I Hope You Hope

F799226C-5CE8-4D64-A072-9DDE5E188627Hope is a choice of courage. ~Terri Guillemets

As I sat down and held our old, heavyset cat, we both fell asleep. Easy to do for both of us.  Now, if the cat was writing this, she would write as I was held by my old, heavyset human mom we both fell asleep.7AF681FF-95B3-48CE-9E00-B274FA3030B1

Can you tell that this quarantine is starting to get to me? My days and hours are all messed up, the cats are messed up, they are as confused as I am.

As I was slowly waking up, at 3 am yet again, I was thinking and a lot of my thoughts were, I hope this or I hope that. Just thankful I had hope.

4B9726C2-16AC-41EA-8604-B2DAC95F1E21I hope this period that we are all experiencing, not just in our town or state but worldwide will end soon. I am sure you hope that, too.

I hope that my son is doing okay, as I feel he doesn’t tell me everything and I understand, as I do remember being young. When I called him, as a text message was not enough, I said several times I was not convinced he was okay. A week or two ago, he was not sure this COVID19 was for real. It is. Now pretty well stuck at his home as we all are, he has to manage and I cannot do it for him. So I do hope and pray that he is really okay, as he says he is. I must trust and put my faith in the Lord to help him, care for him and love him. Being a mom is hard, even as our children get older.F080EDCF-7E63-45A0-A26E-B5338A8500C4

I hope that one day I will see so and so.  I hope that one day or soon I will hear from certain ones, as I feel it is out of place to contact them. I wait and see and I hope.

I hope that through all of this we are all experiencing that we each will see life differently and be more appreciative of everyone that is in our lives and just how blessed we really are.

I hope for so many things. I hope I will be a better person, mother, sister, friend, mother/daughter-in-law and most of all, a stronger Christian. I hope I can toss away the intimidation and fear in life, in my praise and worship and not care what others think of me. I don’t want to be the same person that I was. Perhaps this is an awakening for each of us.

749799C1-B069-4FDF-A295-E9A23872970BOn a lighter note, I hope that I can make my hair look nice and not try cutting it myself. No doubt many are stressing, as I am. We will all have new hairdos.  We just might like this change, but I don’t have much hope in that, for me.

I do have hope for each of us. As we go forward through days of uncertainty and distancing, I pray that you also have HOPE.

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Hope is an optimistic state of mind that is based on an expectation of positive outcomes with respect to events and circumstances in one’s life or the world at large. As a verb, its definitions include: “expect with confidence” and “to cherish a desire with anticipation.”

https://lifehopeandtruth.com/bible/bible-study/encouraging-bible-verses/encouraging-bible-verses-about-hope/

I Don’t Like It

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My mind is stuck, my thoughts are not going anywhere, I cannot concentrate enough to write. Even though my mind is stuck, I feel it is everywhere.

There is no surprise here, as everywhere we look, everything we read or hear is about the crisis and rightfully so due to the severity. I don’t have to like it though. No doubt, you feel the same.

Enough already!037F4683-34B9-4667-BE6F-4CA7636AD996

There is a freezing within me of panic although I feel calm, as I know that I must keep it together, otherwise it is insanity.

Alone, my tears will flow as in that old, ugly cry at least once or twice a day. My cries to the Lord to take this away, to protect my children, family, friends, the world. Knowing we are all in this together.

Enough already!90D05FCC-B819-4A90-9ABD-DE1E637F55C8

The day begins, the same routine of cleaning the house, when I really want to go out. Of course, I can go out but in limited space. I want to visit my boys, have dinner to talk and laugh but it’s hard to do by going through a drive-thru.

Once the tears, cries and prayers are out, it is time to get up to start my day, any which way. I hope I am productive and it is a good day, as I will do the same tomorrow and the next day.

The peace of God that comes after a bout of emotions, is definitely worth the time in devotion. He calms my fears, E9457875-0856-4FA7-AB3B-68F33E326314the panic is lessened as my mind is gearing up for the day. I have to put my trust in the Lord, for He is all I have and He is The Way.

Enough already!

Okay, Let’s do this!

 

 

In the Lord our God! Psalm 46:1-3 God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. … Proverbs 18:10 The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run into it and are safe. Nehemiah 8:10 Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.

https://www.biblestudytools.com/topical-verses/bible-verses-for-faith-in-hard-times/

 

 

Different than Before

7962A244-6C49-457D-9431-6D75CB858236While each of our normal routines are disrupted with work schedules, appointments canceled one by one, nowhere to go, so on and so forth, as you know. Of course, I’d like to go out and eat but not by a drive-thru. This will be missed by many, especially as the weekends roll around.

At one point this week, I felt as though I was being punished. For instance, when children disobey and the parent takes away a toy, cell phone, privilege to drive the car. Each day something else was removed from my daily/weekly routine, and yours also probably.9726947E-D6BC-4CEE-9090-D12D395A350EMy work flow is off kilter although I am safe for when we return, the restaurants, businesses, hair and nail salons, dentist, chiropractor, counseling, even church services. Everything is off. It does not feel real but it is. The next few weeks or month(s), we will all have a new normal, although it is not normal.F1D6F7F4-E625-4C1D-842C-EAAEFD891006

The other night, as I listened to my Pastor do a live, online video to share God’s Word, as he did last night, too. Powerful! To not congregate in church and worship, puts a whole new thought process regarding this crisis, worldwide. We can always pray, worship, read God’s Word at home or anywhere and should be doing already.

As he spoke, in his messages, he said now is the time for 49D91A74-4454-4E17-A791-A706A960B4E2the head of the household to stand up in the home and pray. Pray for a hedge of protection around our families, stop being a coward and be the covering over the home, wife, children. In many homes, the head of the home, normally would be the husband/father. Nowadays, he has either taken a backseat or may not even be In the picture. If that is the case, YOU are responsible to pray putting all intimidation away to speak and pray the Word of God. Just go through your home praying and speaking the Word of God, put post-it notes up with scripture, always putting in faith, pushing out fear.

665DB3FF-279B-4934-AC83-3842A3A6FEBAI am one of those in church or in a group that always remained quiet, a bystander letting others do the praying, as they were or are the more spiritual ones. Although I know, He has equipped me just as much as them. I know He has heard my own, private prayers, whether in my thoughts or verbally, through the years.

In church, I have also been hesitant to raise my hands in worship and step out of my comfort zone. I have at times in years past but through many years and trials, I allowed the enemy to remind me of just how bad of a person I am, not worthy, etc., which is exactly where the enemy wanted me, to be invisible. 32259977-AD41-4FA7-9A50-5E8DC86A98C3

While I am doing much better, knowing my worth, trusting the Lord and knowing He has a plan and a purpose for me, as He does for you. There is no amount of lies that we believe about ourselves that will keep God’s plan away from what He has in store for us. We are to lift Him up in our praise, worship and not to forget our daily walk and talk.

My Pastor’s message hit home. There is prayer within each one of us and we are to pray! With everything happening right now within our own four walls but worldwide, prayer will be what gets us through. After this crisis, no doubt many will have more faith or sadly, more anger. We each have a choice.

F7D7F8F2-2AF7-438C-9B4F-E902485EF954The next time we walk through the church doors, we will not be the same as the last time we walked out. Our prayers will be different. Our worship will be different. Our lives will be different.

Many newcomers will be walking 3D5B6131-A12F-489F-A281-C494EBE432F6through the church doors. This is a time that many will call upon the Lord in desperation and hopelessness, we all will possibly, but knowing we ALL must call upon the Lord, be saved and know deep in our heart that He loves us, He holds our hand, He will never leave or forsake you.

It is time to pray! People need hope, more today than ever. Encourage one another.

We have many days ahead of us through this crisis and to cry out to God, He will be there. Many uncertainties are before us but one thing for certain, we can depend upon God.  Trust Him!

Stay Well45298D66-907E-453C-B73D-62F38A90DF40

15 Comforting Bible Verses for Troubled Times

1 Peter 5:7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

Psalm 56:3 When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.

Matthew 6:25-27 “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on.

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How to Pray For Your Family: Prayer Points for Family

 

Chill Out, Mom!

FA196F8F-96AE-42D9-BBB0-4C820F458972We all know what is happening all around us and will have to deal with it in one way or another. If you don’t know what is happening, then your head is stuck in the sand. Get it out and pay attention.

I know for myself, I am tired of hearing and reading about this Coronavirus, of which you are reading about in my writing. I want it over and done, let’s get back to our daily routine. Sadly, we haven’t even hit the peak of this madness.

Why do our children, like my grown son, a millennial, just shrug this off? Mom, it’s nothing, don’t fear the hype. Chill out! My thought… DO NOT tell me to chill out! 6951BD5D-C8D5-472C-8B5B-CE9D1CF9C677

Have you ever just wanted to reach through the phone and jerk a knot in their behind?

The past seven days he has been in Florida working and a enjoying a mini vacation. I do believe his head has been in the sand.  Trying to encourage him to go get some canned goods, etc., and not to forget toilet paper, which apparently is a must through this ordeal. Maybe if and/or when he goes to the local store(s) and see for himself the empty shelves, he will believe me.

As a mom, no matter what age our children are, I have found you still worry, even though you pray for God’s hedge of protection to cover them.

While I am not in a panic, I know many are and fear is rampant on the faces and hopelessness only to grow in the days ahead. Trying to express, without fear in my tone, but the urgency, encourage and push him to action. This may be one time, yet again, that he has to learn on his own and this mom has to back off to trust the Lord through the process.B42F5D6B-EB20-4C02-8BC3-8B7C9E9BA442

It is so hard at times, like God needs my help. You know?  I, of course, know better. My faith will grow, even though tears may fall and the cries of my heart in prayers that are never ending for my child. His faith will grow, too, in God and in his mom, realizing he should have listened

I do plan to have a box for him of food to use if needed and no doubt he will roll his eyes when I drop this off over the weekend. Surely, he will not tell me to chill out while in his presence. Let’s hope not.

Children! You just got to love them.

I know years later, he will regret moments between him and I and of not spending more time with me and knowing his mom better in his adult years.  I think we probably all go through this.

So for now, I’m…C86903F3-4519-46FD-9FBC-0FA8603CBD38

 

https://www1.cbn.com/parenting/parenting-out-of-faith-not-fear

 

How to Trust God With Your Adult Children

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Do You Trust Me?

We are instructed and reminded either by sermons heard or in a crisis and people reminding us to trust the Lord A74A2627-6647-4D3A-96FF-FF5552C617C9with all our heart. Many times this is written in the Bible of Trust Me. The hope knowing He is there for us and always will be with us, brings peace.  Bottom line, we are to trust Him. No if, ands, or buts about it. Trust Him!

In the past, I have trusted Him, I had to. In situations in my life, marriage that was dying, several family members desiring me to suffer and to die, health issues and just barely crawling or even breathing, I knew to hold onto Him.536B0147-9D8F-48B3-A988-1CCD5BDE0122

Of course, many don’t trust Him, which is evident all around us. To be honest, I had my doubts at time. In periods of desperation and loneliness, screaming out audibly at times and most times were under my breathe in anger. Where are You, Lord? Why am I in this situation and You allowed it? Why? WHY? Even to the point of saying, I am angry with You!

BCA0F826-75CB-459A-9503-BD6800399A02Just with that last statement, I am sure some eyes will widen in shock and gasps of the ‘oh my’ with judgement and shameful that I don’t love the Lord. It felt wrong to do that but it was the truth. Well, guess what? He knows I was angry anyway about my situations and even with Him. He knows me, He knows my coming and my going, He knows the number of hairs on my head so it was no surprise to Him that I was and confessed that I was angry with Him. Believe it or not, I felt a deeper connection with Him after that outburst.

FC7471B9-F55F-481F-A51A-5FCA910CB6EFSeveral that knew what I was facing in my marriage said to leave, even a counselor. No, I can’t. I would suffer and hold on for my boys, it was best financially and even though I felt stuck and had no hope or joy, I always felt that it was not in God’s Timing to leave. I will know when it is time. Perhaps a codependency on my part, but I know to wait upon the Lord.

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In regard to my family members, let them talk, tell lies and whatever they do, as I was to remain in peace and forgive. Did it hurt? It just about put me under in all areas of my life, and that was their goal. It does not mean I am to be buddy-buddy with them but at a distance I still care and know they are family, even though they disowned me. I am to pray for them. Yikes! The praying part was a hard one but I can now and do. God knows their heart, as He knows mine and yours, too. There are some that no matter what you do, it would never be enough. The Lord will fight my battles, I need to do nothing. I am not to convince anyone of those that heard the lies and comments that I am a good person.

My health has taken hits over and over again, knowing my situation and what I have dealt with did not help, but I knew the Lord would take care of me and He has. I am not in denial, but I do know to stay put and I know when to move. Moving day is coming.

9B4F9A02-0DC7-4F41-9ECA-7090EB512BEFSo I am to trust God. A couple of months ago or longer, I felt down inside that He was questioning me. The question was, Do you trust me? I heard that over and over and from experience in years past, I know He speaks to me usually repeating three times. Do you trust me? Do you trust me? Do you trust me? Well, I guess I need to trust, don’t I?

I knew what I was to do and to trust Him in this area and I did but questioning for weeks if that was really Him or just me. Again, no surprise to Him that I think I know better than 2E931FA2-D2A8-4BFB-BFA4-5FBB98D62C67Him, doubting and delaying. Lord, was that really you?  I kept hearing and to remind me, ‘Do you trust Me?’ Still, I hear those words in that question. Have I had any great miracles happen? No, but I know to be patient and wait upon the Lord. Do I trust Him? Yes! I know something is about to happen, the anticipation within, but I have no clue of when, where or what so I wait. I know how to wait and be patient, most of the time. His Timing. Always on time!

Perhaps you or someone you know is in a place of wandering around hopeless, unsure what to do, feeling alone, just existing and going from day to day, in a bad situation, etc., Trust Him. Easier said than done, I understand but for complete peace, joy and happiness that is what it comes down to. Ask yourself today as you go about your life and in the days ahead, Do You Trust Him?

God asks the question: Do you trust me?

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The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and His ears  open to their cry. Psalm 45:15

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6

https://www.sermoncentral.com/sermons/do-you-trust-me-david-dewitt-sermon-on-faith-general-42175

http://www.tellthelordthankyou.com/blog/2016/5/16/psalm-1185-6-god-says-trust-me

 

 

 

Millennial Counseling

Sometimes I just do not understand things in life. Surely I am not the only one.

DB086997-9FE1-4DE9-8257-69EE4E0773E6In regard to counseling, years ago and even today, others think you might be crazy to go for counseling or perhaps have a lack of faith in God. Trust me, I have experienced both of those situations. I know with myself, it is nice to have someone trusted and knowledgeable to talk to and gain advice by looking at them in the eye and knowing they are there with you, there’s a connection.

Back in 2002-2004, I went at first and finally insisted that my husband attend counseling so that we could get help 3F17B921-C853-4F57-8608-E331CA7B84D7for our marriage. Mind you, we were both active at our church and this did not look good if they knew we were seeing a counselor, the lack of faith part. We drove one hour to and from in order to avoid anyone knowing that our marriage was crumbling. I was too embarrassed and actually numb as to what was happening so this seemed to be the answer. It was great for awhile, things were improving between us. It was the fall of 2004 when it all went downhill.D2A19302-87E0-4F0E-BD9F-11542A8221E3

I was just done. Done with him, our marriage and done with that counselor.  Being betrayed by him, now the counselor. What do you do with that? I was slowly inching my way into a deep, dark hole of despair and depression only surviving by tending to my children and struggling to do that. While I was there for them physically, the rest of me lacked and, therefore, they lacked having a mother truly happy and whole. All of which I regret as I dealt with anger toward their father of what was lost in our family realm due to his choices, basically grief in the midst of it all. 

Years have passed and I thank the Lord that the boys have done very well but damage is there, as they also suffered, silently.  In many articles, discussions, etc., many argue whether is best to leave a bad marriage than stay and in my case, it was best that I stayed, so I did. Easy? No!

Finally, in 2008, I met with a male counselor for a year before he moved his practice out of state. Enough to get my mind calmed from the chaos of family estate issues on top of everything else. Also I learned that I had a stroke, probably due to the stress of it all. At least this counselor was only fifteen minutes from my home.

A new job for me, my son graduating, another son nearing graduation and mixed in with some friends that I could see trouble ensue and also a husband losing his job of twenty-two years, due to an offshore situation. Still dealing with a few family members and the hatred of me, being the Administratrix of now my brother’s estate, carried over from my parent’s estate, due to greed. How much more? Actually, I was afraid to ask how much more could I go through.0327EB99-60D1-4BFF-9F82-763285A949FC

Fast forward, life got busy as the boys graduated, college, moving to and from dorms to apartments, work, etc. Enough to keep me busy and my mind occupied of the issues and feelings stored within. The empty nest syndrome was alive and well causing now an emptiness along with a loneliness in my home. Each day was like the next while existing and lost in knowing who I was.

7F945197-238E-4E04-9046-7C1219A7A939As in my writings, I share that I saw my former counselor for four years and she was only two miles from church, if that, back in 2014. It did and does not matter any longer to be concerned in what others think, wondering if I was crazy or if I had a lack of faith. I was taking care of me. I had to. I still see counselors, as I find it helps me and I know I have come a long way.

AFC8DA0F-A4D9-4C90-A649-8F5447CEFE5ENow, I am dealing with a son, in the millennial age group, that could use counseling. I mentioned to him and have sent him leads of many in his area that would be good for him to go talk to. He knows I see a counselor, he never asks why but I have no doubt that he can see that he has a happier mother, and I am. Taking care of me so I can them, when and as needed.

Why is it that these millennials nowadays feel that going to counseling is not needed by going and sitting across from one another. It was when he said he would get counseling online. I just cannot grasp that. Perhaps if in an area that is remote but not where he lives. How can there be a connection? I would miss this closeness of meeting and talking, feeling safe to talk about whatever under the sun. I have loved my counselors, even the first one, even though we had an issue that was not handled properly.647E8292-1776-46F8-A84F-0552A21654D0I discussed this with my present counselor recently while trying to ‘get it’ in my head how this would help him or anyone. Trying to imagine myself in that online counseling, there’s no way. Those four years, my former counselor could pick up of me closing in due to depression, lack of self-worth, many physical signs and help me understand myself that a monitor would not do, I feel. I realize technology is the way of life nowadays and while I love it also, face to face counseling is important.

In all that and my thoughts and opinions, it is just that. Whether it be my son or others considering online counseling, that’s their decision. My son is an adult and he makes his own decisions in life. Still, I am his mom. I just have to pray for him, love him and trust the Lord to cover him in his daily life. I must have faith, as He knows all about my son.

 

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Son Up, Son Down

C0F7572C-8427-49F4-90C1-1FC70020B394Yes, it is just that, son up, son down; not sun up, sun down, in this writing.

As a parent of two adult sons, one is just like me when I was young and conflict is battling between us, at times, as we are both headstrong. I have made my mistakes, and still do, but I have learned many things through the years. I know within myself I am trying to  prevent some heartache for him but knowing also I cannot. He must walk this road himself and experience life, good or bad. It is not to say that my heart does not ache in the process to know and to watch him fumble in areas. Would he listen to me anyway? No. I wouldn’t at his age so I understand but it is so hard.

E635C634-89BF-4693-A4DA-99BE40FACAECBeing a mother, the best role ever and I feel blessed to have this opportunity in life with my sons but sometimes it is the hardest role in life. Sometimes, well many, many times, I am so proud and at times just wanting to throw my hands up in exhaustion but still remain faithful to my child(ren) in love but not enabling; having a balance with each personality, etc. My heart screams out at times, Lord, I do not know what to do or how to help.EB1E6905-6FE6-48D0-A84C-B03E4491AE54

Turning our fear and brokenness over to God is all that we can do. He knows my son(s) better than I do. Of course, He does but that’s my son in our selfish thinking and no doubt He just smiles knowing my child, you also are mine, reminding me I am His. I know your concern, worries and I see your tears over your child at this time. Trust Me!  In that, I have to let go and Trust Him.

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Letting go and letting them stretch their wings but wanting to hold on is so hard. I have given them both space to grow, think independently, make decisions, etc., and they have done well, but I am their mom, I need to step in to help. Right? Again, No!

I read this comment from a mother to another and how perfect. Your parenting in the flesh is over.” “It’s time to parent him in the Spirit. Pray for your son(s) and/or daughter(s) and trust God to do what you cannot do — and He will.”  Just with that, the love I know of the Lord and has for each one of us releases me to trust Him. I do not need to fret and have sleepless nights and worry. I, of course, will always love, care and pray for my children. Yes, the worry and concern will pop back into the picture at times, yet to be reminded of this very wise advice, brings faith in knowing God can take care of our child(ren). To think, He does not need our help. That’s God!C84B3BD5-9AB5-47B3-84ED-C27369A9408B

In knowing that my son has dealt with some depression this past year has made this task a wavering one from fear to faith and back again. My son is up but sometimes my son is down. Aren’t we all like that at times?  As a mother, we do not want to see the down, depressive side but at least he is open with me and I can discern the ups and downs. No matter, son up or son down, I will love and support him from sun up to sun down every day of my life, hoping he will know after my death that his mother loved him.D167416F-69FA-49C4-878A-4EFDECE646B1

Respect your adult children’s need to make their own way, to grapple with the issues, morals, and cultural complexities of their generation. Give them space to learn and grow just as you did.”

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