Fear to FAITH, Survival to LIFE

Matthew 15: 31
Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught Peter. Jesus said, “Your faith is small. Why did you doubt”.

It’s been a year and half since breast cancer surgery. I consider my surgery date my other birthday. From the beginning  I wasn’t just leaning into God through my fears, I had jumped in his arms and prayed with great fervor through many, many tears. Forever grateful am I, this child of His.

I was the energizer bunny during the first year of treatment. I kept on going and going and going and thumping my little drum all along the way. I was sooooo grateful, time was a borrowed gift and I had no more to waste.
I was surrounded by beautiful, wise women who each had their own life’s ordeals to find their way through. I knew the support of others was so needed and had decided from the start to take full advantage of everything  available to me. The local cancer network offered many tools to aid through the treatment process, one of which came in the form of a personal trainer through the YWCA. I’m not a joiner by nature but count me in and I loved working out and laughing with the ladies. It was amazing to witness the ability to stretch our human spirit in order to strengthen physically and emotionally.
As said I was going, going, going until all of a sudden the energy was gone, gone, gone. I got a little depressed when the last 6 month check-up came my way. I had a few things on the happ’s besides the annual mammogram and it was taking a toll. I talked to my friend Janie who explained she thinks we operate on adrenaline while in survival mode. I had not thought of that but it sure made sense. I had hit the adrenaline rush wall, was in a funk and stepped back into fear. But this time it was different, I realized I didn’t want to just survive (because sometimes we don’t). There is the real chance cancer does return and there are those who live with ongoing treatment. Both during cancer and then after cancer we are changed, post trauma issues can come as we try our best to survive our survival. We do have the choice in our ability to survive the trauma, LIVE our lives and not doubt His hand is within our reach. Or live in the fear that tears our joy away as it reminds of our mortality. I choose to LIVE in joy, move through the fears and beyond me to Him.
I continue to pray for the best of medicinal treatments in order to eliminate any cancers from the body.
I continue to pray for more options offered and honored in how best to treat cancer.
I continue to pray we are not debilitated by cancer but through miracle motivated to reach out to those who’ve been there, done that and maybe still are.
I continue to pray for healing of faith where doubt is nothing but a memory stepped on to see closer to His face.5536CC72-F8C3-4684-BE39-2BCD88BB767F Continue reading

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My RIGHT To Know LIFE

Life’s lines get blurred when objective is lost
Many say my rights are of the utmost concern
Why then not counsel before such great cost
Not a decision made lightly, the truth to discern

Offer me solution, without destroying another
Tell me the truth as to what to expect
When offered the choice to abort me as mother
The expulsion of life, to relieve my regret

My anguish and panic are not for abuse
Not to be caught in agenda, while fact not disclosed
The remnant of child kept silent, as part of the ruse
Compassion means more, when life’s not opposed

If truly my rights are of the utmost concern
Truth be told please, in full disclosure
When does the rhythm of heartbeat on, turn
Life’s lines less blurred when in light of exposure

Guilt into Love in Action

horizonHebrews 12:11
No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.

Selfish is guilt, when used in the noun
Silently stagnate until in verb form
No movement or action, no motivation beyond
The dark place of shame for some is the norm

Or maybe in self, where justification is rule
We reach out for reason in hopes to deny
Where our failures we choose to fiercely defend
No need to look out from the souls inner eye

Thank God for the peace where repentance is gift
Where guilt moves into action and forgiveness is key
The evolvement of life pushes noun into verb
Life into change, guilt to compassion in Him meant to be

Easter Miracle

John 3:16

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.

The miracles are coming
But they’ve been here the whole time
In the brokenness of spirit
Where He calls us each, His mine

The miracles are coming
In the peace where pain resides
Only His love remains constant
In Him alone I hide

The miracles are coming
Never alone I need to be
Praise God for His omnipotence
His gift of Son for Me

Oh Brother, I Know Where Art Thou

daylily at home
Not too long ago one of my brothers died.
There are four of us kids total, two girls, two boys with one less temporarily.

I’ve been writing about my brother in the last couple of posts.
I will most likely continue to write about my brother for sometime to come.

I believe very strongly that love is never broken. I believe just as much that our loved ones who loved us so, would want us to live, learn and grow in love from their living into death.

This is just the start of acknowledgement to what I learned from my brother;

1. Hate less and love more. For me Christ is love and because I know my brother is now with Jesus, I get much comfort from this.

2. Waste no time getting caught up in petty behavior, whether it be your own or anothers, just don’t do it! It’s usually hurtful to all and so not productive!!!!

3. Say what you mean and mean what you say (I just love this one, because I hate manipulation but have been known to do it).

4. Do not live as if in fear. The worst that can happen is that you try and fail. I think in my brother’s book, it was better to have the guts to fail than to never try at all. My brother was one courageous man and lived life as an adventure.

5. Your family may not be close at hand but love them, praise them, correct them (on occasion) as if they are. Your family is everything Christ has gifted you.

6. For my brother this was his first and foremost lesson for those of us who loved him so. My brother loved his spouse more than life itself. He lived a life where his love for another came before any of his own needs.

Thank you Mike for all you were and all you continue to be.

When God Met Mike On Biscuit Rock

I will preface this by saying, this is not my story but my brother Mike’s.

My brother is an almost 53 yr old man, who has the demeanor of and carries himself with a quiet but powerful strength. My brother has the adventurous spirit of a wanderer. To me he has always been not so much searching but rather participating in the wonder of that wander.

My brother is much loved by many a friend, his brother, sister’s, nieces, nephews, grandchildren, brother’s in laws, aunt’s, uncles, cousins and most certainly by his adoring wife Darlene.
The love of his life and for a very long time his saving grace has been Darlene. Darlene I believe, is now and will remain always Mikes soul mate. I have never in all my life seen anyone love another, as Mike loves his spouse.

It was for Mike and Darlene, that the story began on Biscuit Rock some 19 yrs ago. They were young, in love and both crazy for the out of doors, so a camping they decided to go. With a small tent, 2 sleeping bags and a cooler they were off to delight in all that nature had to offer. As Darlene tells it they went up a highway that took them to the beautiful Uncompahgre Canyon, Colorado. They kept driving until just around the bend Biscuit Rock (because it looks like a biscuit, go figure) came into view.
They had to cross a bridge which led them to Biscuit Rock. (As I’m writing I’m reminded of how many more bridges there would be to cross in their lives and how much that Rock symbolized for my brother a love never shaken and forever constant.)
The two worked together but struggled to get the small tent upright. After much effort they just threw in the sleeping bags and called it a wrap. Sometime through the night the rain began to fall and it didn’t take much to collapse the tent on top of the two lovebirds. So as the rain fell, so did they down the incline of the hill adjacent to Biscuit Rock. All the while they remained wrapped up snug in the middle of their collapsed tent. They were wet but together and managed to sleep well through the night. All these many years later those two have kept that story close to heart. Sometimes a memory can be the best of medicine.

Now we jump ahead 19 plus years. Mike and Darlene have been married for sometime and their bond has grown stronger throughout the years.

At this point in the story, is when I reference back to crossing the bridge on the way to the Rock. It was over two years ago that Mike and Darlene had a huge bridge to cross in the form of Mikes colon cancer diagnosis. He has remained strong and fought valiantly to cross that bridge with dignity, hope and a fierce tenacity.
Upon Mikes diagnosis he did share with Darlene that when his time came it was back there on the Rock he desired to be.
So not too very long ago he and Darlene decided it was time to go back. Mike needed to go back.

Darlene’s entire family lives there in Colorado but as with most families life and circumstance can take a huge toll. The family had not spent much time together as a unit and like most of us, each had their own cross to bare.

Now with all that said Mike and Darlene didn’t impose on any. They were not in the mind to solicit a family gathering of any kind. They were both just happy to be together and heading to a place where my brother knew he needed to be. Thank God Darlene’s nephew Paul had something else in mind altogether. Paul had rented a twelve person van to transport all on the search for the Rock. Eleven family members and one dog came together on this trip to be blessed on Biscuit Rock. Keep in mind it had been many, many years since this family had all been together in one place at the same time.

The family drove for a very long time in the attempt to locate Mikes beloved Rock. Neither Mike or Darlene were sure of the location but they both knew they would recognize it and so, they eventually did. When the van parked and all passengers disembarked they each started off in their own direction.
Grandson’s Jacob and Brayden went to hike Biscuit Rock. Nephew Paul was off to photograph all the splendor. Brandon, another nephew and his girlfriend were just off to walk. Darlene’s son Dwayne was busy keeping a vigilant eye on his boys. Brandon’s dad Joel and Darlene’s sister Bobby hung out at the van with Mike and Darlene until Mike said he needed to go off on his own. He wanted to be alone with God. My brother was with God that day and my quiet, reserved, ever so strong brother was moved to tears and exhausted upon his return to the van.

It was then, as Darlene tells it that she and Mike knew God’s spirit of grace was at hand that day. Each and every family member was guided by a gentle spirit to join my brother and share their own memories, tears, healing and love. What a gift for my brother to hear how he had influenced their lives, what a gift for them as well.
Grandson Brayden had a piece of the rock as a gift and so Mike would always have it with him.

For Mike and Darlene both, they have never felt such a presence of spirituality and love as in that day. The feeling remained throughout their trip and into a visit with Darlene’s sister Gretchen, who due to her own health issues had not been able to attend. God’s blessing continued as Darlene was also able to spend time with her best friend Marilyn.

Darlene says the trek home from Colorado to Arizona was an arduous one. She said they came upon severe weather in the form of deep snow, rain, ice and fog. There were times when they were out on a deserted two lane highway in 2 feet of snow and she just kept driving with the song “Jesus take the wheel” playing in her head.

After my brother returned from his trip, he called me and asked me to please help translate his blessing into words. My brother wanted to share his story as the love he experienced was shared with him that day when God met him on Biscuit Rock.