Tuesday, November 8, 2011

36 Blessings and Things That I am Thankful For

1. My salvation
2. My cute home
3. Sadie
4. Good health
5. Isaac
7. Therapy
8. Beloved church family: Big Valley Grace
9. Sweet friends
10. Kensley
11. Family who love each other regardless of differences and struggles
12. Fragrant flowers
13. Zoe
14. Giggles from the seemingly locked up soul of an autistic preschooler
15. Neighbors that have become family
16. My Nikon and the ability to "see" God through a photograph
17. Cole
18. Jesus, my Savior
19. Bookclub: otherwise known as free therapy!
20. Music
21. Knitting needles and enough yarn to cover the heads of many small children
22. A mentor whose love challenges me to grow and gives me courage to face the pain
23. A day away at the beach with a special friend
24. Thursday morning bible study
25. Peppermint candy in a mug of hot chocolate
26. Evan
27. Hot soup on a cold day
28. Prayer and the ability to talk to God when there are no words
29. Being born and celebrating my life during my favorite time of year
30. Vanilla Chai lattes
31. My curly hair
32. Cold crisp mornings and a warm scarf
33. A great pen and my little pink journal
34. Quiet mornings with my Bible, journal, cup of tea, blanket, and cinnamon candle
35. Rain falling on the roof as I am waking up
36. God's incredible and deep love for me!

Monday, October 10, 2011



What exactly is therapy?

Well, Websters defines it as "treatment of bodily, mental, or behavioral disorders".
This definition sounds so clinical and methodical. And in many respects, this is true. And believe me, it is helpful and at times necessary in life. But what I've found to be true is that therapy comes in all different forms.

Any of these ring a bell?

Physical therapy (I have not been in need of this up to this point and from the testimony of a few friends, hope to never need)
Occupational therapy (I've been witness to this one first hand. Very helpful but sometimes heartbreaking to watch)
Speech therapy (Again, helpful but difficult to watch when the client is exasperated)
Behavioral/Cognitive therapy (My line of work...Autism, reason that I've witnessed aformentioned therapies)

How about these less heard of treatments?

Retail therapy (Might want to rethink this one, it can propell you right to the therapist's couch in the first place!)
Horse therapy (I love horses but really....is launching myself onto the back of a 1,000lb animal going to diminish my fears and anxieties...I think not!)
Swim with the dolphins therapy (really?????)

When life has really got me down, I tend to turn to these forms of therapy....

Listening to children laugh therapy (blissful)
Smelling the flowers therapy (love,love,love)
Sitting and devouring a new book therapy (comforting form from childhood)
Gentle rain on the roof therapy (instant relaxation)
Dance until your feet ache therapy (never occurs enough!)

And my favorite of all.....

Listening to the waves crash up on the banks of the beach therapy (like Heaven to me)

Why my focus on therapy?

Well, I am in the midst of some major life changes. Most notably the changing of my thought patterns and the renewing of my mind. In order for this to happen, I've had to spend some very difficult time revisiting the ruins of my life. The places with cobwebs and rusty old abandoned memories. The places that no one chooses to willingly revisit. As I've traveld down the dusty road of my childhood, teenage years, and young adulthood I've had to partake of different forms of therapy.
To identify the injuries and scars that seem to continually chase me down, I am grateful for behavioral/cognitive therapy and my exceptionally compassionate and wise therapist.
This type of therapy is the one that helps me dig, dig, and dig some more into the muck. It is the painful part. I am grateful for it.
But in order for this therapy to work I have to continually engage in the other types that I mentioned.
Like today, I was on the playground of a local elementary school and my spirit was lifted up by over 60 second graders laughing and giggling over various ball/blacktop games. Or this morning as I was drinking my Vanilla Latte and reading my Bible, the gentle sound of rain falling outside my window. Or another that I will engage in with much excitement this weekend at my cousins wedding, dancing, dancing, dancing the night away!

As I am in the midst of the painful pr0ocess of seeing the freedom that God has for me, I must remind myself to engage in the "therapies" that refresh my soul.

Besides, they don't cost $40.00 a session!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Sleep and God

I have trouble sleeping.
I don't have trouble getting to sleep but rather, staying asleep.
I don't know why.
I don't like it.
I wish that I could just sleep like a baby. No care in the world, no sin on my mind, no ache in my bones.

I have trouble sleeping.

As I was thinking of what verse to memorize for these 2 weeks I stumbled on Psalm 121. It is a part of scripture that I've heard many times. It is a Psalm that I attempted (well, not completely) to memorize when I went through the study "Stepping Up".

In it is a little nugget; a verse about God not sleeping.

It just dawned on me this morning, God knows what it is like to have a sleepless night. Not that He needs sleep like I do. But He knows.
And further, He is awake when I am waking up hour after hour.
In the darkness, when I awake and cannot fall back asleep, when my emotions are frayed, and my tiredness is making me miserable, God is there for me to talk to.

To remedy my sleep problems I've tried many things.

Warm milk.
Hot bath.
Soothing music.
Read until my eyes burn.
Chamomille tea.
TV on.

and last but should be first,


I find that after I am so worn out and my emotions strung out I turn to God. I don't know why it is that I turn to Him last, when I know that He is there with me through the struggle.

He is there.

He is not sleeping because for one, He does not need to but probably more importantly, because He wants to watch over me.

So, the next time I have trouble drifting off into LaLa land or I am waking up when I should be sleeping, I'll remember to open the conversation lines with my Father who does not sleep or slumber.

"I lift my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you WILL NOT SLUMBER. BEHOLD, HE WHO KEEPS ISRAEL WILL NEITHER SLUMBER NOR SLEEP." Psalm 121:1-4

Thursday, July 21, 2011

verses 9-14

I am so behind in keeping up on this blog. I figured that since virtually no one read it that it was okay to let it go by the wayside. I've since decided that it is at least good for me so, as a new goal I've decided to pick up the pen again.

I've been memorizing (more like meditating) verses with the LPM blog this year. A smaller group of us have also been memorizing together on another blog (ladiesscripturememoryteam.blogspot.com). I had intended to get all of my verses on this blog as we progressed but as life would have it, I didn't!

Never too late though right?!

Verse 9
Psalm 27:13-14
I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living! Wait for the Lord; be strong and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!

Verse 10
Lamentations 3:22-23
Because of the Lords great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.

Verse 11
Psalm 84:5-7
Blessed are those whose strength is on you, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage. As they pass through the Valley of Baca, they make it a place of springs; the autumn rains also cover it with pools. They go from strength to strength till each appears before God in Zion.

Verse 12
Psalm 3:3
But you, O Lord, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head.

Verse 13
Psalm 68:19
Blessed be the Lord, who daily bears our burden, the God who is our salvation.

Verse 14
Psalm 121:1-4
I lift my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber. Behold; he who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.

Lord, teach me your truth as I meditate on your word!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Verses 7 and 8

Well, here we are half way through April. The beginning of the month I had the wonderful opportunity to attend LPL (living proof live) in Fresno. Beth spoke from James 5. I found so much that I could identify with in her talk. It was encouraging to focus on where God has me at this time in my life. At first I thought that I was between the rains (rains of blessing) in the valley of wait, but upon further reflection I realize that I am in the midst of rain in somes ways and waiting in others.
I really wanted to cement the truths that I received that weekend so decided to memorize James 5:7-11 for the month of April.

Here goes:

James 5:7-8
Be patient therefore brothers, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient about it, until it receives the early and late rains. You also, be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand.

James 5:9-11
Do not grumble against one another brothers, so that you may not be judged; behold the Judge is standing at the door. As an example of suffering and patience, brothers, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. Behold, we consider those blessed who remained steadfast. You have heard of the steadfastness of Job, and you have seen the purpose of the Lord, how the Lord is compassionate and merciful.

I have to admit that my memory work is not coming with ease this year. I've procrastinated and have had marshmallow brain it seems! Just having a much harder time getting the verses to "stick". But I've decided to not condemn myself about it. I am meditating on the verses and trying to plant them in my heart. God's Word in me will not come back void. He will produce a harvest in me. I am humbled by His love for me.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Sounds In My World

Clock ticking.

Computer fan running.

The melody of windchimes.

Tinkling of my cat's collar bell.

Walls creaking.

Neighbor cheering.

Sirens blaring.

Cat yawning.

Phone beeping.

Me breathing.

Worship songs playing.

Refrigerator cooling.

Airplanes flying overhead.

My world can be so noisy. Amid the many different sounds that fill my days, the sound that I long to hear the most is the one that only comes when I slow myself down long enough and quiet my heart.

The sound of my Saviors voice.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Verses 3,4, and 5

I've been out of the loop lately with the blog. Just have not had much to say but do want to make sure and document my experience with my scripture memory this year.

Verses 3 and 4 really focused my mind on being renewed and and how God gives me power to conquer those things in life that get in my way. It truly does all begin in the mind. I struggle so with what goes on in my mind. I do need the truth of God's word renewing the ugly lies that Satan feeds me over and over.
Will I ever gain victory?....Yes in Christ I will!

Verse 3:
For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.
2 Timothy 1:7

Verse 4:
She will have no fear of bad news; her heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord.
Psalm 112:7

Verse 5 was taken from my recent readings in the book of Deuteronomy. It just really spoke to me about who God is and how I am to hold to him with all my might and will. And to acknowledge that He is my praise and MY God. Just realizing that I need Him so much and for some reason I find myself not turning to Him first.

Verse 5:
You shall fear the Lord your God. You shall serve him and hold fast to him, and by his name you shall swer. He is your praise. He is your God, who has done for you these great and terrifying things that you eyes have seen.
Deuteronomy 10:20-21

Saturday, January 15, 2011

SSMT Verse 2

Well, here we are on the second posting of a verse for the SSMT (siesta scripture memory team). I had a harder time this go round of chosing a verse that spoke to my life. I spent a considerable amount of time this morning searching and searching for a verse. Usually, God gives me a verse without much trouble but this time that was not to be. I don't know why...could blame it on my weird mood lately...kind of disconnected. But I am learning that nothing is wasted when I give it to God and I've been trying to give those feeling over to him.

He is so good to me and I know that He is molding me into His image. Working on my character and producing hope within my heart. I almost chose to memorize the verse from Romans 5 that says that suffering produces endurance and that endurance produces character and that character produces hope. What I love is that it goes on to say that hope does not put us to shame (or as another version state, does not disappoint) because God's love has been poured into our hearts. I just may have to really meditate on this verse too!

But, alas, the verse that I've chosen to marinate in for the next two weeks is this:

No distrust made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, FULLY CONVINCED that God was able to do what he had promised.

I chose this verse because I need to be reminded that my faith is a constant and daily choice. I have to chose to trust God with everthing in my life each and every day. Sometimes, each and every hour. And on occasion, each and every minute.

I will confess, I struggle with distrust. Distrust of people and sadly enough, distrust of my Lord. I am trying so hard to trust Him with everything but it is hard. I think that it is in part connected to injuries of the soul that we all experience but I also think that it is connected to my sinful heart at times. I just don't want to trust God because trusting God means giving up what I want. It is a walk toward less and less selfishness. It is something that I do desire but really, the sinful man within me fights it.

God has made me a promise, one that involves my blessing, my freedom, my healing. If I would but trust him and not waver in my faith, I will become fully convinced that He will prove himself faithful!

Lord do it!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

SSMT Verse 1

Lord Jesus,
You promise to keep me in perfect peace when my mind is focused on you. I pray Lord, that in this new year I would have a mind that is stayed on you and that as I learn to keep it focused on you that you would build my trust in you.
You are good to me and I know that you are my rock. Help me to lean on you and you alone.