Embrace Your Now. Enjoy the Journey.

#sufferwell
MS. 

Smh. 


This is an illness I wish NO ONE had to suffer. I believe God chooses us for certain types of suffering, because He knows we will carry out His will to completion. It’s not the suffering, but our decision in how we will conduct ourselves in these times which bring honor to God the most. God receives glory in how we allow Him to show Himself strong and mighty in our lives, but it is in the praises to God others bring to Him when they see us suffering through, well. It’s not us, but the Christ in us they SEE. It’s Him they glorify and Him they learn to trust, because of our testimony. 

I must endure… there’s no changing that – unless God does the changing. I must give myself shots 3x’s a week to stay out of the hospital. I’m tired. I’m tired of being ill, sad, struggling with blurred vision, slow in my movements, stiffness, and bouts with memory loss. I’m tired of stuttering and battling insomnia. I’m tired of the aches and pains, bouts with chronic depression, hearing loss, overheating and fatigue – just laying or sitting still makes me overheat, tired or feel extremely cold. I’m tired of this fight. MS INTENSIFIES EVERYTHING!! 

I get soooooooooooooo afraid when Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays approach. I sometimes cry or hide myself under my blankets, pretending it’s another day or I watch the time pass, because I don’t want to give myself this injection. 

What keeps me going?

Truth: God and others. 

Every now and then someone will bravely write me or walk up to me and inform me that my struggle to keep going inspires them. I cannot even imagine HOW, but God knows… 😳

DAILY, I battle depression, isolation, distrust in others, feelings of inadequacy and abandonment, feeling odd and insecure around others, feelings of unfamiliarity around people I know I should be familiar with, increasing feelings of loneliness, fear of crowds, loud noises, weirded out by bright lights, friendlessness and thoughts of disappearing forever. I have no idea why I’m still here, but I can say this –

Through abandonment, infidelity, divorce, homelessness and going months without money or food for a long period of time God birthed something in me which gets me over my lowest points. God placed in me the thought that everything I am meant to face and suffer – it’s never for me, but for someone else. #itsnotaboutme Someone I may not know or do know, but don’t know is watching…. he/she is gleaning from me the courage and the will to stay the course and go through… He/she is learning by my example how to suffer well, just as I have learned from Jesus how to suffer this life well. 

God always answers prayers. I believe the moment I learned of my affliction (MS), I WAS IMMEDIATELY HEALED, IN THE NAME OF JESUS. God healed my soul, though He allowed this. Yes, my body is blessed by God to be broken in this season. FOR SUCH A TIME AS THIS! 😁 Everything I was carrying (which was not mine to carry), INSTANTLY fell from me – the weight of unforgiveness, abandonment, injustice, sabotage, disobedience, betrayal shame, guilt, anger, resentment, bitterness, and the like, all fell away from my heart, mind and soul. I am no longer held captive – prisoner to the things I allowed to weigh me down for so long. 

I remember being wheeled into my room, after being admitted into the hospital. Looking around REALITY hit me so hard in the face! I realized – I was IN THE HOSPITAL!!! Really! I realized there were bigger fish to fry than those little smelly, old anchovies I was carrying around all those years. I IMMEDIATELY FORGAVE THEM/IT ALL!!! IT WAS FINISHED!!!!

I was given a ~NEW NORMAL~

I was given more important things to think about and new battles to consider being in or not. The past no longer mattered to me. 

My health became my focus. That part. 

The moment I was freed – I was able to make my way through to lay myself at Jesus’ feet. For the rest of my life this affliction is assigned by God to lead me to the feet of Jesus, to lay at His feet in humble thanksgiving. ~JESUS DID IT ALL FOR ME~ #deathforlifelifefordeath #thesweetestexchange #nocharge #nopaybackoption #itisagift

Jesus said that if He be lifted up He will draw all men to Him. I believe it is through the breaking down of our bodies, Christ is lifted up and more people (by way of observing us) are brought (led) to Him. More people trust God, because of what they see Him doing in our lives – as we choose to suffer well in it all. 

When we hide in shame, and refuse to let anyone know… how then can they overcome or be saved from what they are going through? We cannot shy away from our truth. People whom God wants will perish – they’ll struggle more and harder than they ought to. We have to allow the suffering and for others to observe us in our suffering. It’s how we all are able to overcome this life. 

My body maybe broken, but my heart no longer is. God holds my heart forever. My body maybe broken, but I’m FREE!!! One day I will receive my new body from the Lord. A body free of illness, sin, pain, mood swings, wrong thinking and false emotions. I am dead to this world in my broken body, but ALIVE IN CHRIST IN MY NEWNESS which I have received from Him at the point when I was diagnosed with this ugly disease. 

Yes –

I hurt. I cry. I anguish over the things I must do to slow down the progression of the disease. Sometimes, I want to just say “…. ..!” And never take another shot or swallow another pill, and just allow the disease (the lesions in my brain) to rapidly increase and the nerve damage to spread throughout my body. I’m tired. Believe me, I am, but God won’t let me. He keeps me going – doing the right things for my body and the alien I live with now inside of me. It is truly Him and His strength. I cannot even give credit to my prayers that I’ve prayed and He’s answered. They have anything to do with it. God is good and He’s just. 

No! It’s ALL GOD! God and God alone. He alone gets all the glory.

We are not suffering just to be suffering. We are all on assignment. God controls it all – even the diseases. We are going through these things for someone else and the honor/benefit of teaching them how to maneuver (rightly) through both the good and the hard times. 

God never promised us this life would be easy. He promised He’d always be with us – He’d never, never abandon us. He’s closest to us when we think He’s the furthest away from us and His power is perfected in our weaknesses. God would never allow us to go it without Him. He loves us too much!

So know – 

If you stop, lay down, cry or your strength gives out – God will do it for you. He will pick you up, carry you through, wipe your tears, gently kiss your face, and strengthen for the new day, the journey ahead. God will renew you and give you everything you need to make Him proud. He will not hold anything against you. He withholds nothing good from you. 

You are still ~HIS FAVORITE~

God loves you. πŸ™‚

You’re not in this alone. 

-It’s just for now…

Trust Him. #eveninthis❀️❀️❀️

Embrace your now. Enjoy the journey. πŸ˜‰

“Stand-offish” (It’s intentional)

I back away, because I no longer feel safe: You cause me to question… to feel I’m no longer welcomed – I’m unworthy of genuine affection. 


My intention to stand alone is solely for my protection. 


I stay far away, because You cause me to feel unsafe. I no longer know where I stand. I always feel judged by you although you’ve not said much. I often feel misunderstood by you – and a bit distrusted when we’re in the same room. I used to believe… but you changed that for me when you began to treat me differently.
I choose…

I must fly solo.

I am safe just being alone. 


I quickly remove myself from your presence in passing, because I don’t trust you. I keep my distance, because your shiftiness scares me. When we’re in close proximity of each other, you cause me to feel very uneasy. The best thing for me is to just make my exit –

Leave the scene. 

I stay away, because I cannot call you “my friend”. I tried… I trusted, but you proved my apprehensions to be right. No one but God can be trusted. People disappoint… they always disappoint. 

It’s okay. 

I never expected much. 

I’m used to being let down.


My distance is a sure sign – you’ve changed. Thank you for any help or consideration and kindness you’ve shown me, but I’m a creature of habit. Consistency rules my heart. I can’t help it. 


I speak. I treat you the same, but my trust in you no longer exists. You’ve probably noticed…

My silence. My distance. My lack of interest in…

I can tell you the reason:

We’re no longer friends. 

I feel safest just keeping to myself. 


I don’t trust what you pretend to extend. 

I’m better off – without…

I leave no apology for being stand-offish. 

Distance is my safe place. 

-See you in passing, where we’re doing our usual…

Acting cordial.

I choose to keep my distance.

Yes, it’s intentional and it’s personal. 

God’s Choice: Highs and Lows & The Unnatural Fight Against Complacency

Tired…Went to the Word for strength to get over… highs and lows come in waves. Thankfully, God stays the same – no matter what. 


Father God KNOWS… He sees… He feels… 



HE CARES so deeply about us and what we long for… go through day in and day out – our desire to be more spiritual, our irreconcilable differences, separation, anxiety, sleep deprivation, loss of a loved one, the desire for better health and mental stability, the desire for less restrictions within our finances, new spacious vehicles, displacement, our desire to find a way to meet the needs of the household without robbing Peter to pay Matthew, John and Paul, the need for energy to clean and fix things around the house/car, more living space, money for school, a new better paying job, bouts with memory loss, endless doctor appointments, unruly neighbors, disrespectful children, hostile employees or family members. 


God even understands our simple desires, such as, school supplies, uniforms for school/work, new under garments for the children, clothes, shoes, toiletries, bouts with weight gain/loss, the weight of having to take medication, too much of this, not enough of that. God gets it! Listen – every basic need we have right now – God cares about and will in due time meet them ALL. One by one we will see our giants fall and see them no more, if we stay the course with God and keep trusting Him. He knows the way through. His path is best for us.


God cares about it ALL. 

God really does believe in us and everything we are facing matters to Him. Even when we don’t recognize His closeness or His compassion. He’s here. God stands near us. He stays right here next to us and collects every unspoken word, every secret thought, and every tear we cannot let down because the pain is just sometimes too great. God gently soothes even the cry lodged in our throat. He hears everything we want to scream out loud, but can’t. God doesn’t think we’re crazy. He understands it all. 


As I was giving someone encouragement, God read this to me, as well – to encourage us all.

 Galatians 6:9 (KJV)

9 And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.

God asks that we try to just hang on for a little while longer. He asks that we try to be patient. To wait for Him. 

Today, I kept hearing, “Every kingdom has its rise and its fall”

Some will have and some will lose. It’s how life works.

The Lord reminded me it’s best to go through this period of lack with gratitude and contentment. It will determine how well we manage His blessings and how well of a steward and sower we will be when the tides change. Bitterness and resentment which we allow to breed in our hearts during our time of need/temporary lack will cause us to make very irresponsible choices and mounds of mistakes in mishandling our blessings once we come to a place where we have plenty and are no longer in need. 

God asks that we not allow the darkness we maybe in right now to cause our hearts to grow bitter, but to find delight in Him and in what He’s already provided. This sets goodness before us whether we have or don’t have. Goodness and mercy will always be our covering. In all times if we choose wisely.

I encourage you, as I do my best to encourage myself, don’t fight the lows with anger and resentment. Don’t fight the hurt with wishes of the old (better) days. It’s meaningless. Be responsible. Be wiser than you were, yesterday. Fight the lows with the belief that every one of God’s promises has your name on it and in due time each one He will indeed release to you. Mature in the lows. Appreciate every lesson they bring. Most of all, NEVER FORGET… Be a person of great compassion for others. Treat everyone with the love and care Jesus has for you. Forgive the unforgivable. Love the unlovable. Help – meet the needs of those who could NEVER return the favor (nor desire to). It’s not about you. 


End suffering by placing yourself in positions to help others. Pray when people request prayer. Call and check on those who you know may need to know they are not alone. Sit next to someone whom you see is often alone. Reach out to those who you think want to be left alone. Reach out to them anyway. For most people – it’s a sign that they feel unworthy of anyone’s genuine love, care, lasting affection, and friendship. It’s true!

One time help doesn’t fix anything or give you a special “do-gooder” badge for the year. God wants to use you and the good He’s placed in you, consistently. God wants you to be a stream overflowing for Him which others can draw from. God desires continual cheerful givers. Keep being His vessel for His own personal use. 

Each one of us is on assignment until we take our last breath. 

Life doesn’t get easier. We get stronger, wiser, better, when we finally surrender to God what all belongs to Him. 


Even the highs and the lows belong to Him. He knows exactly what He wants to do with it. 

God has lots more in store than what we see in front of us or in how we feel in this time.

Find out His plan. Go to His Word. 

Galatians 6:9 (KJV)

9 And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.

~KEEP READING HIS WORD~

Don’t let go. Don’t give up. God rewards His faithful children. Always~Always. ❀️❀️❀️

…As I Am. πŸ˜‰

Good evening, everyone! Hope you all have been keeping cool. 
I wrote and posted this on my FB page. I try to bring humor to my battle with MS and feelings of failure. I hope this lifts your spirits as it has mine. What we all are dealing is real, but we mustn’t allow it to kick us around. As I share with my family and friends – just getting out of bed and cutting on the shower is a great accomplish for me. I mean that! So give yourself more credit than you do. Most could not handle what we’ve been handed to manage and still live our best life in this. You all are stronger than you realize. 
Enjoy! 

“Acknowledging and addressing the battles within are the first steps toward a peaceful resolve. 

Honesty, Admittance, and ACCEPTANCE is the best place to begin when deciding to head in a new direction. ~Undisturbed~ πŸ˜‰πŸ™ƒ

I’m honest: I’m tired. 

I admit: I don’t want to clean.

I accept: My comfortable bed’s invitation to lay down and call it a day. 😜😁

See! It’s that easy. Problem solved. 

So –

Every so often, I get a small window of opportunity where I just get this JAZZED feeling to clean or to finish old projects I started in my last attempt to clean and do away with… It’s a very small window, mind you. When that window closes – I’m done! 


I was doing alright today with all my “Jazzy” summer cleaning, until I WALKED OUTSIDE. 😳😡😡 I was outside all of 5 minutes. Came back into the house and can’t think straight. It’s TOO HOT!! 


Zap!

Nope! Don’t feel much like cleaning. I literally want to take EVERYTHING in one swoop and throw it all away! If I had the strength… I’d be like “Olive Oyl” from “Popeye” the cartoon, eat my spinach, grow big muscles, and tote a big pile of everything in my house I don’t want to clean, I no longer want to put back, nor find a new place for any longer – I’d carry it all on one muscle then toss it into a giant dumpster with one thrust. 


Dust off my hands and lay down watching a Marathon of old M*A*S*H episodes. 


Oh to be a cartoon character. Must be sooooo niiiiice. 😜

Never change clothes or shoes, hair stays neat. Go into the water dry – come out of the water and dry up in seconds. Get hit by a train and get right back up and continue on with the chase. Get back up after being hit with a huge frying pan or crushed by an anvil. Now that’s the life. 😁

Real life sucks, sometimes. It’s less exciting. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

I’ve literally been sitting here praying to God for energy, strength and a game plan. Where do I begin? πŸ™„

Too bad… my plan today to be and do better than I was/did yesterday was just my imagination running away with me. It was a nice thought and gesture. 😁

“A” for effort.

Calling it a day. Going to bed now. 

This day’s a wrap. 

Oh well –

“After all, tomorrow is another day” -Scarlett O’Hara”

When God Enters the Scene…

God SHOWS UP & SHOWS OUT on behalf of everyone He is in divine covenant with. (At the appointed time) 

Exodus 14:13 (ESV) And Moses said to the people, β€œFear not, stand firm, and see the salvation of the Lord, which he will work for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall never see again.

We are really growing together in this journey of faith. Many of us are truly thankful for every one of these challenges we’ve been given the choice to meet by our Pastor. 
My family and I have WITNESSED some REMARKABLE MIRACLES during the first two weeks of this 15 week fast with our Pastor, and our Light and Life West church family. Indescribable. God LITERALLY took a two year struggle/battle and turned it around in our favor in just 1 week. No one BUT GOD…


We literally are LIVING a “THEN GOD…” testimony day by day, by day – only by HIS GRACE. Not just by our prayers, declaration, expectation or efforts, alone, but also by the pure grace, favor and compassionate affection of the Lord. Him Only! He looked on us with great compassion and met our need for restoration and parted that big, Red Sea. Nobody, but the sovereign, living God. 

Trust, it’s not that God will make the climb easier, but He has promised to be with us every step of the way. He’s gives us each a measure of faith to use when the climb up gets too difficult, and in due time, after we have struggled for a little while in the time of testing, He rewards our obedience, our efforts, our consistency, and bravery to keep covenant with Him – (even when the promise has not yet manifested) but as we commit to stay in the trenches and work – keep the faith, keep believing Him, keep praying and verbally recalling His words to ourselves, speaking life into our dead/dry places and continuing to remind ourselves and others “He’s come through for us before – He’ll do it, again” – He sees and hears us and brings us closer to the promises and provisions we stand in need of. 
God rewards faithfulness to Him. 


His rewards (great or small, noticeable or unnoticeable) are always GOOD, whether they are spiritual rewards or other tangible rewards – God gives Faithfully and generously, above and beyond all we ask of Him and desire to even think of what He will do for us. We have seen HIM DO IT with our own eyes – not even looking for a blessing from Him. We were ready to settle for crumbs. We just needed Him to move the mountain a little so we could possibly squeeze through to get closer to the other side of our tedious journey. We were prepared for the climb/the fight. 

God crushed the mountain just like THAT! We see it no more. Now we must get into position to possess and protect the promise He’s given to us. Mercy. God acts FAST. He told me very audibly, one afternoon in 2013, “When I do this, you’ll know I DID THIS.” Each time He acts I am reminded of that time I was faced down on my floor – snot-nosed, crying out to Him from my gut, and heard Him speak those words loud and clear to me. 

He makes me into an even more convicted believer ~GOD CAN DO ANYTHING HE WANTS TO DO WHEN HE CHOOSES TO DO IT AND FOR WHOMEVER HE CHOOSES. HE DOES WHAT HE PLEASES. HE IS GOD ALL BY HIMSELF AND HE DOESN’T NEED ANYBODY ELSE NOR DOES HE HAVE TO EXPLAIN HIMSELF TO ANYONE. GOD IS SOVEREIGN~


It’s better to trust and obey Him and to try Him. Even for a little while (if you’re weak in your faith and it’s all you’ve got to offer Him – for now). Try God, try His way, first. He will not disappoint nor fail you. 

When God sends our leaders to us to challenge us to go up a little higher in Him – TAKE THE CHALLENGE. You will be soooooooo glad YOU DID. #proven


The Lord God is our ~EXCEEDINGLY GREAT REWARD~ (Genesis 15:1, ESV) 

READ: Exodus 15 

Living Well: Unbothered. The Price of Peace

Late Sabbath evening, (Saturday) June 17, 2017 

For the weary and faint of heart: Fret not. 

Psalm 91:2 (NLT) 

“This I declare about the LORD: He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; he is my God, and I trust him.”

Joshua 1:7-9 (NIV)

7 β€œBe strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. 8 Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. 9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

I take NOTHING & NO ONE for granted. 

Taking my time, Sabbath afternoon – making my way back to the other side of the park, where my car was parked, I saw something I wasn’t too pleased with. 3 boys bulling a flock of geese which did nothing to deserve being mistreated. Their crime was simply that they were born and they were different, and most importantly, they were minding their own business. 

Merciful, Jesus. 

However, I continued to push my walker down the opened pathway and watched…

These geese blessed my soul. Just minding there own business, up walks 3 mean boys who OBVIOUSLY had nothing better to do than to bother this family flock. They kicked at, chased, screamed at, and threw things at them – laughing in amusement that they could scare the geese and make them go in different directions. But I think what kept up their attempts to hurt them was the fact that though the kicking, chasing, screaming and throwing of rocks, trash, sticks and backpacks at the flock would break them up – it would only break them up temporarily. The flock always managed to find their way back and rejoin each other – banning together. It was an incredible visual to see. Nothing and no one succeeded in the effort to break them up and scatter them in different directions. They kept finding their head leader and they continued to move together – looking for the plan to find safety.

Mercy. πŸ™‚

I was sooooooooo hurt and disturbed by the boys’ rude behavior, I let it show on my face, as I got closer to the scene. 😑 I let it be known I was not at all impressed nor amused. I felt sorry for the defenseless animals, for these kids’ parents, for future victims and for these ruthless kids – and the future troubles they are possibly creating for themselves through the mistreatment of animals in broad daylight – while we all watched them victimizing these birds – who did nothing wrong to them to begin with. 

I watched… smh. 😞 It’s very apparent with disturbed children as these were/are – No one took time to show them how loved, valuable and worthy of good things they really are. It’s too bad. Too, too bad. It’s just a vicious cycle. Smh. 😒

So – onward.


The head goose decided (for itself and the entire flock, obviously) it would take safety in its natural habitat – into the lake it went… but it wasn’t alone. Everywhere this goose went, the flock would follow – and into the water they went with the head goose, to be safe from the 3 mean boys. 


They stuck together like as if they were glued together. If the head of the flock decided to go left, they all went left, or right, they all went right. When He swam faster, they kept up, swimming just as fast.

Seeing them peacefully move on from their temporary torment from those evil kids gave me so much inspiration. -Taught me something about my life. Being quiet and deciding to move on doesn’t equate to being someone showing fear and weakness. It just simply implies we are better than this, we value who we are, our peace of mind, and we’ve got more important things to tend to. We’re focused. Disciplined. Conditioned for something better than to be mistreated and disrespected by others who don’t realize nor value our worth as we do. 


This showed me what true balance and harmony appears to be like when our eyes are centered solely on our Head Leader, which is Jesus. The evil one can come up and attack or send attackers our way, but he cannot reach us once we make our way into the living waters of safety. All we need to do is turn to God and hide in Him. It shows we are wise, God who is in us, directing us, is stronger than the enemy, and we know where our help comes from, and we’re not required to handle these troublesome burdens, direct, unduly assaults/attacks and roadblocks alone. God calls us to take shelter in Him. 

Once the geese retreated to the waters where they knew they were safe, the 3 boys stood, looking dumber than dumb, turned and walked away. Bored. Nothing to destroy. I saw them no more. 

The head goose quickly led the flock back to shore when he saw it was safe again, and one by one they each leaped out of the water, flapped their wings, allowed the water to roll off their backs, and quietly and peacefully went back to finding their resting place for the remainder of the evening. 


As they crossed my path I couldn’t help but to notice, they never ran in fear of me. I mean, I’m human! Right? I was pretty close up on them, as you can see in the pix. They just simply kept their distance and looked straight – eyes on their leader. Never deviated from the path, from the first to the last. No shortcuts or a race to be first. Each one went atbtheir turn, keeping up. It literally was as if I was not even standing there, that’s how secure they felt in coming back onto safe shores once they noticed the boys left the scene, altogether. 


Peace KNOWS Peace. Peace is respectful of boundaries, beauty, uniqueness and the desire for all to remain and thrive IN PEACE, SERENITY, and TRANQUILITY. Peace is not disturbed by another’s peace. You feel me? 

Agitation is disturbed by another’s desire and decision to be at peace and to not be bothered with nonsense. Money cannot buy this level of intelligence and strategic, willful execution. 

There are MANY PEOPLE walking this earth right now who have MUCH, but lack what most of us who have so little possess… Real Peace Within and the natural inclination to cohabit ~UNBOTHERED~ 

Without fail: We perform what we practice. 


There’s so much we can take from the animal kingdom. God has hidden so many secrets to living a great life now – this moment, in all of nature. He created nature and has given us all access to learn the ways which lead to having all peace. God’s peace is all around us. God is Peace.

Stop and SEE. Take notice and ask God to reveal to you the lessons which He has for you to learn. Believe me, there are always more than 1. Keep living. πŸ˜‰ By this time next year, this and other scenes will have a whole new found meaning to you. Life is funny that way. 

Everything holds a special place, a special purpose, and a special meaning for where we are in life, right this minute. Look deeper. God is speaking directly of you to you by way of what you stop to take notice of. 


Just like we see… GOD SEES… HE KNOWS… and HE CARES. ❀️❀️❀️

Nothing goes unnoticed in or under His heavenly abode. 

Take courage. Stand, boldly. Stay the course. See with your heart, not just your eyes. Trust what you KNOW. 

Troubles don’t last, always. πŸ™‚

As often as you can – INTENTIONALLY Enjoy every gorgeous sunrise and especially, stop enjoy those beautiful  ~SUNSETS~ #promiseofanewdayisnear

#LBCCA #iamdanalewis44 #authorandphotographer

http://bible.com/1/isa.26.9.kjv