Hello!~~~

Welcome!~

It has now been seven years since I started this blog. How quickly time goes by! We are many members but we are one in the body of Christ. Therefore you do not journey alone! Hopefully through this site you will be encouraged by the fact that many things you are going through in your own walk, others are going through (or have gone through) as well. Sometimes we think we are "going through things alone." But we are not. God said that "He would Never Leave Nor Forsake Us." (Hebrews 13:5) and that "There is Nothing New Under The Sun." (Ecclesiastes 1:9). No man is an island. It's easy to forget that. May the words in this blog help you to think, encourage you in whatever spiritual state you are in and may the Lord use them to help us to grow in Him! He is the Author and Finisher of our faith!

I don’t want any readers to think that I am “promoting” being a prodigal. I definitely am not. But what I am hoping to do – is to encourage those of us who either have had or are currently experiencing a hard time in our walk to be honest about it. Personal conviction is a powerful thing, especially if you truly love the Lord. I think that sometimes the Body of Christ critiques and judges to the point where the person who is at the other end of that pointing finger feels ostracized, alienated and alone. I don't think that that is what Jesus intended. When I read through my Bible - I see a firm yet gentle restoration that Jesus ministered to those around Him. Look at John 21:15-19. When Peter who was at an all time low point in his walk - he was firmly, yet lovingly restored by Jesus. He didn't tear him down, or yell or make him feel any worse then he already did. He spoke to him lovingly and gently - and in doing so, Peter was able to repent and minister in a much more powerful, humble and confident way and it became one of the largest ministries ever.

Please note that I am only a vessel, my calling - to write. I dedicate this blog to the Lord and ask that He use it to reach out and touch whoever needs a special, loving, personal touch from Him. My hope is that the Holy Spirit allows you to see Him through the words (and not me). We go through things so that we can extend our right hand of fellowship behind us to assist and help someone else. Our Bible is the same today, as it was yesterday as it will be tomorrow. (I am far from perfect and do not profess to have all the answers...) but the good news is - Our Heavenly Father does! His love, forgiveness, grace and mercy is real!Nothing you are experiencing in your walk comes as a surprise to Him! May He be glorified through this blog and may God bless you at whatever stage in your walk you are in!~



I am a Breast Cancer Survivor

I am a Breast Cancer Survivor
I was diagnosed with early stage triple negative breast cancer on June 24th, 2010 - I have been cancer free for 7 years now. It was only a chapter in my life - NOT my life, but the impact is one that has changed my life forever. Its important for women to know that 80% of the breast cancer diagnosis come from women who don't have a history of it in their family (My family didn't). Early detection is the key. For more information please click on the pink ribbon above. It could save your life.

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August 29, 2010

Sexiness is an Attitude ONE Wears - How do YOU wear it?

My Curls - last Picture to Show before cutting them off - Sexiness is an Attitude One Wears - and it comes from INSIDE. Its not a fashion, its NOT a weight, Its NOT a look.  It's what is INSIDE of you. Society is so wrong. And when YOU know Jesus as Lord and Savior - you have an inner beauty that is indescribable. It's called "The JOY of the LORD"
I've made a decision. I'm going to cut my hair tonight. ME. I'm going to be the one to cut off my curls. Next to losing my life - my biggest dread has been having to cut off my hair. I won't let breast cancer demoralize me. I won't.  And so after an anquishing day of debating whether or not I should do it. I'm just going to do it and be done with it.  None of my pink sisters are around to discuss it with - so I'm going to just do it. I have to. The decision has weighed heavily on my mind. And I know that may sound ridiculous and very vain perhaps, and maybe it is.  But I am someone who was bald for the first 6 months of my life (as a baby). It has taken forever for my hair to grow - and honestly - I love my curls.  They have made me feel sexy, feminine and attractive. But then I got to thinking of a saying I created almost 2 1/2 years ago - one that I really believe... "Sexiness is an Attitude One Wears.. And I wear it well."   What I mean about that  is that sexiness is NOT a weight, its not a fashion, its not a look. It's what you FEEL about yourself on the inside.

It had taken me a while to be at an age when I was "comfortable" within my own skin. Feeling feminine, attractive and self-confident. (Note: Not conceited. Never that). However a woman in her forties feels - well - Mature, feminine, confident, not so concerned about other peoples opinions. It takes a long time to feel that way. I finally "got that." It really IS an attitude - inside of YOU.

That being said - I am going to find ways to make myself "feel" sexy as I go thru all this. Being a "woman" feeling "Womanly" is something that comes from the inside and shows on the outside. Its time to be creative. And creativity is a gift I definitely have... First and foremost I have the beauty of knowing who my Lord and Savior is.  The peace that passes all understanding is something that "radiates" - its what people SEE in you that is soooo different than anything else.  That is still there.  I'm told that half of the battle of this disease is what goes on in your mind because of it.

I am a child of the UTMOST HIGH GOD. My beauty comes from HIM. Hence, its time to be creative. I can do this.  I will and I will be victorious and God will get ALL the glory, ALL the honor AND all the praise. And come next summer - I'm gonna have hair like a Breck girl! (Laughing)

August 26, 2010

DRAW ME CLOSE TO YOU

It's Not That Simple, Simon.

Can you imagine God's viewpoint? Ours is soooo small.
Sometimes the hardest part of being a prodigal is not knowing "how" to find your way back. Throughout my 23 years of being a Christian, from the very start - I talked. Simply talked to God. When I first accepted Christ back when I was a Theater Major at UMass Boston - searching for God. I made it clear to Him that IF HE WAS REAL I needed Him to reveal Himself to me. I challenged Him to do so. He did.  Throughout the years of my walk with Him, I always spoke to Him like I would sitting across the dinner table to a friend.  I wanted His opinion. I wanted to be close to Him. As I drew nearer to Him - He drew nearer to me.  It was intimate. It was real.  It was "the peace that passes all understanding." I fell in love with the Lord. My soul desire was to live for Him.  I would read the Bible until I fell asleep with my face in it at night.  I wanted MORE, I wanted to know. And He revealed so much to me.  His Word - the Bible - TRULY is the living Word. I longed for Him, I sought Him and I found Him. I can honestly say there is NO great feeling in this World than feeling God's arms wrapped around you. That is how it was for my first 20 years in Christ. I experienced my ups and downs as one does when they are on a journey with Him.  I prayed diligently that the things He wanted to change within me - that He would change. And He did - NOT by someone telling me "I couldn't do things anymore" but by Him taking away the desire for those things within me. So that I no longer was interested in them.

We each come from different walks. I use to help minister to women. Looking back at that time, I really thought I had it all together. I probably did - but only because I didn't truly know what going "through" the fire was. I was able to be transparent with my walk before women. To sympathize, to pray, to encourage and hopefully to be used by the Lord. I didn't realize how much God wasn't done with me yet. I didn't realize how my footing could quickly slip. I didn't realize that I would compare myself to the prodigal's son. I took my steadfastness for granted. I didn't realize that unknowingly perhaps, I judged people in my head. I "felt sorry" for them. Compassion yes - but sorry too.  I look back on those times when I felt so strong - and I feel like I'm looking at the life of another woman. For I am not that pillar of strength now.  I have been humbled.  I've been brought down to my knees - and in case you think the cancer did this - I can tell you IT HAS NOT. I was already experiencing sooooo many questions, sooo much confusion (which I know isn't of God) before any of that.

The WORST feeling in this world - is feeling far away from the LORD and NOT knowing how to find your way back. You ask yourself time and time again - How do I regain what I loss? How do I and in doing so do it HONESTLY.  What do you do when your heart is not inline with what people are telling you you should do? Oh it is soooo easy to dool out advice to someone. It is sooo easy when you have not walked in their shoes to tell them what they should do. I realize now that in doing that you can cause a person to feel so divided. It's God who does the changing.  It's God's compassion and mercy for those that are in a prodigal's state to bring them out.  I know that for those who truly want to be right with Him - that it is HIM who has to do the changing. Thankfully God looks at the heart.

You have no idea what the person you are sitting, walking , standing, driving next to - is going through in their life. Perhaps they are being tormented? Perhaps they are crying out for help.  I think remembering my Word - Jesus saw this with people. He was compassionate. He was merciful, He was forgiving, He was loving.  Shouldn't we be the same? If we are to be called "Christians" (to be CHRIST LIKE) shouldn't we be the same?

August 19, 2010

Heaven Is The Face Of A Little Girl- Steven Curtis Chapman

Its Alive!!!!!

He's Only A Prayer Away

*Picture from Imagebank.org/uk
Its so true that the Bible is the "living Word." Today, I've been thinking a lot about the woman in the bible who had been bleeding for years. Let me see if I can find the scripture....(Matthew 9:20-22) "Just then a woman who had been bleeding for 12 years came up behind Jesus and touched the edge of His cloak.She said to herself 'If only I touch His cloak I will be healed. Jesus turned and saw her, "Take heart daughter." He said. "Your faith has healed you." And the woman was healed at that moment."

What faith that woman had. Twelve years of bleeding. She never accepted it. Can you imagine how hard it was for her to get close enough to "touch him"? Crowds always followed Jesus.  But her determination and her faith - even to the point of saying to herself "IF I COULD ONLY TOUCH HIS CLOAK." How loving was his response. I'm sure that in the Old Testament times this woman was ostracized. I'm sure she probably felt very much alone. Maybe she felt as though she had done something to bring this on herself. Day after day she lived with this ailment. My heart goes out to her.

Although I have only been considered a survivor for almost two months now, my life has changed drastically. I guess the only way I can describe it is the difference between a beautifully painted "water color" picture and a vibrant, brilliant oil painting. The water color was before bc and the oil painting - after.  I wake up each morning thankful that God has given me another day.

That woman - I can almost see her determination that no matter what it would take - she WOULD reach Jesus and touch Him.  How did she feel when He turned around and acknowledged that He knew He had been touched?  Was she scared? But I'm quite sure His loving reaction - "Take heart daughter" was as healing to her as the actual reaching out to touch Him.

"Lord - I'm reaching out to you - as she was. I don't know the words to say, because there is so much going on inside me... I want to touch you. The last two years have been the hardest in my walk with You. I know I'm not telling you something you don't already know. I don't know how to - get back to where I was with You. I've always been honest - you know this. So Lord - I will reach out to you today and I will simply say - "Help me." Two words Lord. For I don't know exactly what to pray. I only know that my life is in Your hands. In Jesus' precious name I pray. Amen."

I guess the biggest thing I've learned is that you can't "earn" heaven. Its not about "going to church" church doesn't save you - it helps build you up in Christ and surrounds you with other believers (the body). What saves you is the fact that Jesus died on the cross for forgiveness of our sins. Its His love. It's His mercy, its His sacrifice, its His grace. How strongly I'm aware of that..

I'll bet you her life was vibrant and full and she never took life for granted after that moment. I wish the Bible told us more about her - what her life was like before and after... I think tomorrow when I wake up I will picture what it would be like if Jesus was sitting at a table right across from me.  Perhaps even joining me in a D& D Skim Latte with a thick foam (smiling) and what I would say to Him. I think that is how I shall start tomorrow. For now - I simply say "Lord, like that woman - I am reaching out to touch you. Help me and I love you."

August 10, 2010

The Winans ~ Tomorrow

Will the Sun Really Come Out Tomorrow? Who Promised YOU That? Little Orphan Annie?

Its all in your perception, you either see the rainbow or you don't. Which is it?

How quickly time flies. Have you ever thought about it? I've been thinking about "old people" - whatever that means. Its all in perspective isn't it? When you are seven years old you cannot wait to be "double digits" TEN. How magnificient that sounded. When you are ten, you cannot wait to be a "teenager" Thirteen sounds sooooo cooool. When you are thirteen you dream of being a "sweet sixteen" with high heels and lipstick and bras and "boyfriends."  When you are sixteen - eighteen seems like the age when you are college bound a "young adult." When you are eighteen the cool thing is being twenty-one!  There always seems to be a number higher than whatever you were to reach for. What age was it that all of a sudden we wanted to start "counting backwards?" How is that I feel the same at 43 as I did at 16 - only perhaps "wiser." (I hope). I think its because who we are is what is "inside" this outer shell that grows older every year.

If you think about it - we were meant to live "forever" before the fall of Adam and Eve. Can you imagine that? What the Garden of Eden must have been like? More beautiful than we could possibly imagine, I'm quite sure. And think about it - animals that you could understand! LOL I've often thought about how Eve wasn't at all surprised or afraid when the snake started to talk to her.  Was that a "normal day occurence?" I find myself wondering about that... Imagine understanding the songs of a bird. Eat your heart out Dr. Doolittle you had NOTHING on Adam! (LOL)

Who are you? I mean really - what defines you? What is it you've always wanted to do and why haven't you done it already? We are pretty good at excuses, aren't we?  "Well one day perhaps - after this and that... or when so and so happens..." But here is the thing - why not now? What if later is too late?  We put things off assuming that we will have tomorrow.  As if we are "owed" tomorrow.   I have decided to live each day in full. I won't hold back.  I will tell those I love them - that I love them TODAY.  I will not let the little itty bitty things that are annoyances eat at me.  Life is so short. Even if you live to 101.  We were made to live forever, otherwise that desire to do so would not be so strongly instilled within is. The "will" to live.  We each have it.  Although perhaps there are times in our lives when we wonder about "throwing in the towel" "is it all worth it?" "Can I be all that God wants me to be?" "oh woooooe is meeeeee." STOP.  I have learned over the last month and a half - that when we act like that it is like - well it is like - There stands God before you, your Father, giving you this beautiful gift of today of now.  All "wrapped in a sunrise" and we look at it and we look at Him and we say "Is that ALL you got? I don't want it!"  And we sulk or we have a temper tantrum because life isn't what we expected it would be.  "I want this! I want that! You don't care about me! I'm having financial problems! I'm unhappy with my life! Life is not worth living!!!" And we stomp our feet and we act like the spoiled brats we sometimes are.  (Come on - someone is getting this...) and God looks at us, and He looks at His creation that He made around us.  (You know the one - the one we take for granted every day by not stopping to "smell the roses" that by the way He created... or to hear the birds singing in the trees... Or to look with such pleasure and awe at a sunset at the end of the day.) and He is incredulous. I'm quite sure He is.

I'm not talking only to YOU dear reader. But to me as well.  When you are faced with your morality you suddenly see things more "vibrant." Things perhaps were in a "water color hue" before.  But when you are going through a time where you realize that you are mortal, that the one thing we all have in common no matter race, religion, etc... Is that not one of us is going to live forever.  I don't mean to sound morbid.  Not at all.  I mean for you to wake up tomorrow - and notice something about the day that perhaps you hadn't noticed before.  Something perhaps you took for granted or someone. Or perhaps you've always put yourself "last" maybe its time for you to love yourself as God loves you. Maybe its time for you to ask God - why am I here? What do YOU have in mind for me? Maybe its time for you to realize now is the time.

I do not have all the answers. Not even for myself.  In fact, when you are faced with your mortality all of a sudden you feel sooo "inadequate." Almost embarrassed that although you thought you knew how precious life is - you really really didn't. What audacity we have to feel as though we "deserve" tomorrow.  Because the truth is - we don't.  What a loving merciful God we serve. Who's grace and mercy is renewed every day. Don't put off things for tomorrow. Do them TODAY.  There is a saying that I firmly believe - two actually. The first one is one that my father use to say. "Do what you gotta so you can do what you wanna."  That is sometimes harder done than said! But there is truth to that.  Also I always tell people "don't wait to give me flowers tomorrow. Tomorrow I could be gone - Give them to me today!"   In other words. If you love someone - tell them NOW. Don't wait till later.  Later you might not get the chance. Not one of us is perfect. But God is. The Bible tells us "He knew you when you were formed in your mother's womb."(Jeremiah 1:5) How wonderful is that? How special you are to your Heavenly Father. How much He loves you. How much He has tried to show us (in spite of ourselves!) that He does.

Age is nothing BUT a number.  How you live. Your attitude, your mentality, your actions - those are all the things that are important. How about thinking about that when you wake up tomorrow morning? As you hear the birds chirping outside your window. Or the sun shinning warmly on your back.  It's a good day to be alive. Cherish each and every moment. In fact - make every moment count.

August 6, 2010

He sees You When You're Sleeping - He Knows When You're Awake...

Chemo soon trying wigs



















I was thinking today - how we often berate ourselves. We are our "own worst critic." We look at the person in the mirror and we critique. We look at all our imperfections. We "beat ourselves up." Its time to stop. Its not conducive and it doesn't build you up. Sometimes we don't need anyone to tear us down because we are too busy doing it ourselves... Hmmmm anyone hearing me? (Winking at you). Take a look in the mirror and see the person who is "inside" that shell. The real you. Not the faults, but the strengths. Everyone has things about themselves that need changing.  Sometimes ol' slewfoot has us so down on ourselves that we can't even "pick ourselves up."  I don't see how God gets the victory in that do you?  We cower. We shrink into the background. So put off by the faults and things that need to be worked on we can't see past that.  I think its time we "change our minds."  The Bible tells us to "fix our thoughts on what is true and honorable and right and pure and lovely, and admirable. Think of things that are excellent and worthy of praise."  God wants us to love our neighbors as we love ourselves.  But how can we when so many of us haven't even "begun to love ourselves?"

Celebrate the small victories over things you are struggling with. God sees them - in celebrating the small things it makes us stronger to deal with the "bigger things." Getting back from a "prodigal" state is something that may take one step at a time. Its easy to feel discouraged.  I have found that it really helps to be able to have a sister (or two) or a brother in Christ who you can confide in.  Even your darkest fears. The Bible tells us that "Iron sharpens iron." This should be someone who won't "judge you" but will listen and allow God to use them to help restore you. GENTLY in love.  I have heard close sister say "your standing on the brink of hell" - I gotta tell you THAT doesn't help. You can advise people firmly and gently in love without being judmental. Restoration in love and truth makes a big difference. Jesus did that and He's to be our example. I don't want to be the type of sister who makes someone want to walk away from the Lord because they feel they'll "never get it right." God doesn't work like that.

I've been amazed at how we truly only see in part and God sees in full. I have learned that when God says "no" there is a reason for that.  Sometimes when we go ahead and "do what we think is right" - even when God says no. He allows us because we still have free will.  Praise God for a merciful and loving God who allows us to make "mistakes" and uses those "mistakes" for His glory. Turns them around. Let me use an example. My family and I moved from Massachusetts to upstate New York three years ago.  It was a decision made with a lot of prayer but also a lot of fear.  We'd just gone through a very difficult time with one of our kids - and thought that we needed to get him to an environment that would be better for  him.  I thought God had given us the "okay" but it turns out He hadn't. (Never make a decision based on an emotional hardship - you'll be so tied up with your emotions you won't be able to quiet your spirit to hear from God correctly.) We moved and I can see now where we "missed" the mark.  Not to say that God doesn't take our "lemon decisions" and "make lemonade." But sometimes He says no for a reason that we cannot see or foretell. We only know in part - He knows in full. If we had only ridden out the situation, waited and believed we would have saved ourselves so much more aggravation. I can clearly see it now. Instead of continuing to berrate myself I learned a lesson. The lesson was - God knows so much more than I do (Laughing). I really "don't" know it all. (I'm joking). The lesson I learned was that to think of it in a positive light when God says "no." Because its for our best.  Someone remind me to re-read this blog next time I feel impatient (grinning).

August 3, 2010

You Raise Me Up

Road Blocks? Crossroads? We Already Have a GPS - We Just Don't Use it Properly!

Maybe He wants us to be at "the end of our rope" Because then we'll let go of the rope and hold on to Him. "Not by Power, Not by Might but By My Spirit." Says the Lord (Zechariah 4:6)
 Life is unpredictable. It just is. Once upon a time things seemed sooo matter of fact. But they're not. Life doesn't equal one easy 123. Good does come out of bad. Maybe God allows it because it makes us more humble. More dependent upon Him. It makes us more aware that we are the "creation" and not the Creator. We use to sing a song in Church that had the words "my life is in Your hands" in it. Up until now I thought I was singing that sincerely. I realized that until you go through something that makes you realize how precious life is. You can't possibly know what the meaning of those words really mean.

Is it enough to be able to say, "Lord - I don't know what to do?" or "Lord I can't see my way through this one - so I'll have to depend upon you?"  Honestly, there are certain things that we can't see our way out of. Maybe we weren't meant to. I've been thinking a lot about this... Maybe we are not meant to have all the answers now. Maybe that's why He says in the Bible "My Grace is Sufficient." (2 Corinthians 12:9) Maybe that's why its so important to stay connected with Him through prayer. I'm at a time in my life where I'm holding on to Him with all I have. And you know - it wasn't the breast cancer that brought me to that point. There was something that was already pressing me in to the Father. It is okay for a prodigal daughter/son to admit that they are having a "prodigal moment." Perhaps they don't know the way back home. Perhaps they have soul ties to whatever it is they've encountered. I can only say that during the time I've been a prodigal daughter - I have probably learned more about myself than I have in the whole 22 years I've been a Christian. And the thing is - I'm STILL learning. For me, the hard thing has been to know what to do about what I'm discovering about me. Have you ever come to a cross road in your life where you just don't know what to do because you never expected to BE on the path you are on? Have you ever felt "stuck?" I don't pretend to have all the answers. But I guess that is the point where I am at in my life right now. Having a recent diagnosis of breast cancer doesn't make all the other "problems" disappear. It pushes them to the side but it doesn't make them "go away." I think that God appreciates our honesty. Its ridiculous not to admit what you are thinking or feeling to Him because He already knows your thoughts before you even think them! He's GOD!

This weekend was a difficult one for me. I can't plan, I can't "live in the future" all I can do is live in the present. For someone like me who is a "planner" that is the hardest thing to do. Especially when I'm dealing with the "unexpected." My trust is in God, but also for all those things I'm struggling with right now - I have to give each one of them to Him. Because I don't know what to do. I think it is a time when God makes you realize that "Your life (my life) is in His hands.  How I wish once we decided to make Jesus our Lord and Savior that He did what He wanted with us from there. But its not as simple as that... How I wish it was.

I guess this is just one of those moments where I have to continue to be honest with God. Are you at a point in your walk where you don't know what He is saying to you? It helps me to remember that He promised us "He would never leave nor forsake us." (Deuteronomy 31:8)

I'm uncertain about so many things. The one thing I'm certain about is that I have a Father who loves me (and you do too). I'm not the "perfect daughter" (who of us is?)  I probably have made things harder for myself at times than He ever intended me to. I've got sooo many questions for Him. At this moment in my life I feel "road blocked" at every which way I turn. I envy my brothers and Sisters in Christ who seem to think they have "it" (whatever "it" is) all together.  I don't. I have my insecurities, my disappointments, my desires, my hopes, my uncertainties. Honestly at this point its hard for me to know which "end is up." But here's the thing - God knows my heart. (He knows yours too) and sometimes we have to give the things that are burdening us to Him. The Bible tells us "there is nothing new under the sun." (Ecclesiastes 1:9) So nothing comes as surprise to our Father. Many of the people that we have read about in the Bible - David, Sampson, Joseph, Moses, etc. have gone through things in their lives that WE are STILL going through today! That is why the Bible is full of stories about "real people."

My guess is that with road blocks and crossroads we need to pray them through. Tell God what is on your mind. One thing that one of my Sisters in Christ recently said to me (and it made perfect sense) is that "God's already worked it out while you're trying to figure it out."  Hmmmm makes perfect sense to me. How about to you?