Hope…abundantly

Posted by on Dec 19, 2015 in My Blog | 2 comments

Hope…abundantly

Come, Lord Jesus, Our guest to be. Bless these gifts bestowed by Thee. Bless our loved ones everywhere And keep them in Thy loving care. As Christians, we don’t really have to invite Jesus into our hearts,  He is there.  But, this Advent season I am paying special attention to being open to hearing from God just what he wants me to gain from the lighting of the candles, the lovely music, the Scriptures, prayer, the sermons and the devotionals.   I’m coaching myself to be aware that His desire may come to me in a soft whisper, a loud message or even a look on someone’s face…in their eyes. So, thus far, God has laid out for me to understand that Hope and Trust are very connected.  Do you feel you see less of Trust in your life, your world?  For someone to have Hope, they must Trust that God is real.  He’s there.  He won’t disappoint by not showing up.  If we can truly Trust, then, indeed, we can have Hope… and abundantly.   I’m also focusing on Intentional behavior.  It’s good for us to Intentionally invite Christ the King into our hearts because when we actually invite Him in, we prepare ourselves for our Guest.  I think about what I want to do to be ready for His Presence.  I am Intentionally de-cluttering…not the living room, but my mind and my heart so I can be a Good Listener.   I want to be ready. Yes, O Come, O Come Emmanuel....

Read More

I Will Rise Up

Posted by on Nov 26, 2015 in My Blog, Think About This, Uncategorized | 0 comments

As we celebrate Thanksgiving Day in America, we gather with loved ones with whom we share the recognition of the many blessings in our lives.  We express our gratitude. For many,  this is one day in the year that we set aside our challenges and burdens to enjoy a special meal often including our best family recipes and remembering those who shared them and prepared them for us.  Lots of hugs and even some heartfelt tears of remembrance of those we miss. Around the world, in poor neighborhoods in our own towns, even in our own homes, it is a very difficult time for families estranged, experiencing financial crises, serious illness, broken hearts and those who feel very alone. While the majority of our nation & our world have been rocked by the barbaric senseless killings expanding around the world by Issis and other terrorist groups, many of us feel even more committed to maintaining our hope, denying these evil-doers their hope to destroy our SPIRIT! As Christians, we have serious work to do in reaching out to those who suffer and sharing the love and promises of Christ the King.  Whatever your faith is, we, as humankind have the opportunity to be both to our suffering…human and kind. ❤️ I dedicate this post to all in our world that suffer today, feeling hopeless and I challenge those of us strong and capable to take the joy and hope in this celebration of Thanksgiving Day to stand, raise your hand and commit to others who suffer that they are not alone and we all can “Rise Up” as Andra Day sings so beautifully sharing our...

Read More

A Hug So Tight…

Posted by on Jul 8, 2014 in My Blog | 3 comments

A Hug So Tight…

I saw this lovely quote the other day, “One day someone is going to hug you so tight that all of your broken pieces will stick back together.”  I searched and searched to find the author, but apparently that is unknown.  But, even so, I think it is a sweet and wonderful reminder to all who struggle and suffer, the value of  relationships in our lives.  It matters not whether this “Super-hug” comes from a mother, father, sibling, spouse or true friend…what is important for us all to remember is that those relationships exist and we are their beloved.  Haven’t there been times in our lives when we have felt like, “if only all my broken pieces could be stuck back together?” Coming upon this quote, my thoughts  immediately flew across the miles to someone I love very much who has persevered with a chronic illness for nearly three years now.  I believe her miracle is on its way and while she moves along her journey she not only has received many oh-so-tight hugs but she herself has also given those powerful and loving hugs to others she loves. As Henri Nouwen, the spiritual author of many books says, “We need to be angels for each other, to give each other strength and consolation. Because only when we fully realize that the cup of life is not only a cup of sorrow but also a cup of joy will we be able to drink it.” ...

Read More

A New Year…FULL!

Posted by on Dec 31, 2012 in My Blog, Think About This | 2 comments

A New Year…FULL!

I’ve thought a lot about how to celebrate the New Year’s arrival.  We’re so surrounded with sickness, sorrow and loss it seems, so it seems a little inappropriate to say to those folks experiencing those things, “Happy New Year!”  Though, I do want them to be happy and have a good year.  So, my thought process has led me to identifying what really makes me happy. It starts with PEACE…for all… and let it begin with me! JOY…from whence comes your JOY??? HOPE…HOPE is like washing the windows of our minds and souls, wiping out our pain & sorrow, restoring us to the place where we can see beyond and a better day. LOVE.  “Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” New Living Translation (©2007) So, if everyone…in Statesville, in NC, in the USA, in the world…would live to create peace for all in what we say and do, can you imagine how much more peaceful our world would be? If we could see our words and actions as “fairy dust of some sort” and from all our interactions with others would fall a covering of JOY to the WORLD!  Interesting to contemplate. And when we learn of pain and sorrow in someone’s life, a word of caring, acknowledgement, and the gift of our enduring presence with them will spring up a river of hope in their heart…and ours. So, I wish for all a 2013 Full of Peace, Joy, Hope and LOVE…which makes this all...

Read More

October- Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Posted by on Oct 5, 2012 in My Blog, My Breast Cancer Journey | 0 comments

October- Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Here it is again, October!  My birthday month, the beginning of fall which I love so, pumpkins, the cooler, crisp air and the beauty of falling colorful leaves.  Wow!!  But an even bigger WOW!! is the fact that October is Breast Cancer Awareness month…a time when women and men are reminded that “early detection saves lives” and “there is hope for a world without the beast we know as breast cancer.” For me, it’s been 13 1/2 years since I was diagnosed.  How time flies!  This October I am focusing on two things regarding breast cancer: 1)  I am celebrating the joys over the years that I have been blessed to live since my diagnosis, two mastectomies, chemotherapy and return to the world of women with hair!  Along the journey of breast cancer, I gained so much!  Not in pounds but in an awareness of perspective…even in the midst of the extreme sickness, unreal fatigue, loosing my hair and realizing I had “a 70% chance of surviving 5 years” that life is so good and full of gifts that we sometimes don’t see EXCEPT in the darker days. 2) I want to do my part in sharing the message of hope to those experiencing the journey of life-threatening illness while at the same time inspiring the not yet afflicted to be diligent about doing self-exams (I found my lump myself), seeing your doctor for regular check-ups and having a mammogram every year after age 40 or earlier if you have family history. When I found the lump in my breast, I immediately knew it felt different and that I should get to my doctor immediately.  Quickly, tests indicated it was suspicious and just as quickly I had my surgery and began life-saving treatment.  The surgery, in my case, was fairly easy.  The chemo was dreadful.  Each person responds to treatment in different ways.  It depends on what drugs you are given and how your body responds.  Living alone as my two grown daughters live out of state, I had many friends and my brother who checked on me, helped me in a variety of ways and ministered to me throughout. My girls would come to visit on weeks when I felt better in the cycle of treatment every 3 weeks.  This worked well and we had opportunity to love and laugh and encourage and support one another that way. EARLY DETECTION SAVES LIVES!!!!!  Tru dat!  Had I not found my lump, my story would be dramatically different.  We learned from surgery and pathology reports that my tumor was large and that the cancer had metastasized into one of 24 lymph nodes removed.  So, it had begun to spread but only to one.  Time was critical, so had I not discovered it, the cancer would have continued to spread and it does spread quickly, we know. THE MESSAGE OF HOPE MATTERS!!!! Tru dat, too!  I was like an empty earthen vessel on my journey that God filled to over-flowing.  He filled me with lessons, awareness, and gifts.  One of the biggest lessons, awareness and gifts He laid on my reaching up heart was that I had so much while so many others had so little.  I had good doctors, good insurance, family and friends, my church to support and encourage me. I knew the Lord intimately and was filled with His Holy Spirit.  Though I had spent many years working in an outreach career certainly sympathetic to those in need, God poured into my vessel an even deeper realization that so many people are ALONE! So on days & nights when...

Read More

The best thing about the future…

Posted by on Apr 17, 2012 in My Blog, My Breast Cancer Journey, Think About This | 0 comments

The best thing about the future…

Abraham Lincoln said, “The best thing about the future is that it only comes one day at a time.”  Are you like me in that you have some days which at the end of the day, you find yourself giving thanks that that particular day is coming to a close?  I count everyday a gift, but that doesn’t mean everyday is easy, fun and exciting.  I have never had a day that I was willing to give it up…to say to God, I’ve had enough, I don’t want this day.  Take it back. Lincoln had the same perspective that I think many of us do at times and that is that one particular day is about as challenging as they come.  THOSE are the days that make me so thankful that they come to us one at a time. In talking with my niece who has been sick and now slowly recovering since November 11, the other day we remarked about God’s wisdom in keeping the future a “secret” from us because surely, if we knew how long a road to regaining her health was going to be in the beginning, we might not have been able to cope so well.  It reminded me of my days one summer 13 years ago when I was taking chemotherapy for breast cancer…the side effects got worse and worse with each treatment.  I knew I was to have four rounds so I marked them off one at a time and celebrated, 25% there…50% there, 75% there and, hallelujah, I’m done!!!!  With each new symptom and problem, it was good I did not know in advance what it was going to be like and how long those days and weeks and months would seem. The future…for those of us believers in the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, the future is HOPE! Hope of Life Abundant, Life Eternal and Life for always and forever in...

Read More

Hug of A Lifetime!

Posted by on Jan 16, 2012 in My Blog, My Breast Cancer Journey | 11 comments

Hug of A Lifetime!

Each of us has our own way of dealing with a cancer diagnosis in the family.  Some of us are nearly immobilized by fear; some cling to denial and others, like my first-born, find a way to fight back.  My older daughter was in Mexico studying for much of the time while I was enduring chemotherapy.  She returned to Atlanta when I was at the mid-point of my treatments.  On one of her visits to me in NC, she shared with me that she was going to walk in the AVON 3-Day Breast Cancer Walk which was 60 miles.  She explained that it was a way she felt she could fight back by raising awareness and money for breast cancer research so that others would not have to endure what breast cancer patients have to endure.  Now, she was not a runner or even a regular walker.  Sixty miles is a long way, I offered, but she was determined she could do it.  “Mom, how bad can it be when I compare it to what you have gone through these four months!?” So the training, talking, encouraging others to join her began.  All this was going on as she continued working on her 2nd degree in college.   She kept me posted throughout her training and fundraising by getting people to sponsor her as I continued my chemo treatments…each of us pushing ourselves…her to go further…me…to manage my side effects of nausea and extreme fatigue.  Both of us working to stay strong.  My third treatment was the most difficult with the nausea being the most horrendous causing me to need IV fluids three days the following week.  One more treatment to go…I can do this became my mantra!! My other daughter became engaged and planned a wedding for November.  Surely I would be stronger by then.  Perhaps, I would even have hair again! I did not tell my Atlanta daughter that I was planning to surprise her in Atlanta the weekend of the Walk.  I prayed and prayed that I would be strong enough to drive the 4 hours to Atlanta.  My son-in-law was to keep the secret.  My doctor helped me out by giving me some steroids prior to my last treatment to help with the side effects.  Boy, did that work!!!  Not only did I not have the bad nausea, I had appetite and could eat!!  Woo-hoo!  I got through my last treatment which gave me a few weeks to recuperate and I drove to Atlanta to surprise my little Energizer Bunny!  I arrived the day after she started. The next day, we rode the route shouting encouragement to the walkers making certain she was not in particular groups to spoil the fun.  We knew where their “lunch stop” was to be so we went there planning the surprise.  I was so pumped I felt like I could have done the walk.  (However, that definitely was not the case!)  My son-in-law found me a chair and I sat along the side of the road where she would enter the “lunch stop.”  We watched and cheered hundreds by hundreds who arrived ready for their break.  How exciting this was. I was wearing my favorite cap of black sequins with big gold-sequin stars which I called my “Celebrate Life” cap. Finally, I stepped out into the road on top of the hill they were climbing, looked at the next group coming forward and I spied her.  She was leading the pack, on the very front of her group.  I raised my hand and I saw her hold her arms...

Read More

Posted by on Nov 14, 2011 in Favorite Quotes, Inspiration | 0 comments

Read More