I work out most of my life’s problems when I take a walk with Jesus each morning. While the humidity hugs my skin and the song of the birds fills my ears, I talk about my problems with Jesus.
On this day, I was preparing to write a message called “Hold on to Hope.” But the problem was that I felt totally unequipped and unqualified to teach anyone about hope. I had not been a stellar example of holding on to hope myself. I needed someone to teach ME how to do it!
As I poured out my fears and concerns to Jesus, I pleaded for Him to help me, to show up, and to supernaturally give me the words. I entreated Him not to abandon me now.
“Jesus,” I begged, “please don’t leave me standing at the altar.”
Photo by Shardayyy Photography on Unsplash
The phone rang. I was out working in the yard, enjoying my flowers, but I decided to run into the garage to grab it. It was a friend in crisis calling for prayer, like many friends before her. I found a quiet spot in the house to sit and fully listen to her story. She had made a mistake on her taxes and potentially owed the government $13,000. $13,000! I did not know what to say, other than “Wow,” so I offered to pray for her. And as I listened to Holy Spirit and prayed for her, these keys for surviving a crisis emerged.
“I can’t live with this pain for the rest of my life,” I thought as I lay in the bed. I can do a lot of hard things, but live with this level of constant, chronic pain was not something that I believed that I could do. I begged God to heal me of it. I lambasted Him for not healing me of it. I begged Jesus to take me now. And then I began to consider how to take my situation into my own hands. A few days later, I left a desperate message with my neurologist, “I’m in so much pain that all I can do is think of how to kill myself.”
January means different things to different people. For some, it means a fresh start on a journey to a healthier you. For others, it means time to clean and organize the house. To many, it means football and the anticipation of the Super Bowl. To retailers, it means Valentine’s Day and garden art.
January is the month when the retailers put away their Christimas merchandise and line their shelves with fresh offerings of garden art. Painted bird houses, metal bird baths, concrete statues. Colorful plaques and rustic stakes and decorative trellises. Here I come, Hobby Lobby! I love filling my cottage garden with whimsical and eccentric garden art. For me, this is the most wonderful time of the year.
Me, with garden art, in Hobby Lobby
“What does a migraine really feel like?” my pastor asked me while we were having a meeting about the ladies ministry. “It is just head pain?” I could tell him a thing or two! I have had migraines for about three years and some of them are quite memorable. Recently I had a debilitating migraine that lasted from 9 am to 5 pm…8 LONG hours.
When I experience a debilitating migraine, I am not only in pain but extremely weak and forced to be in bed. When I have to get up to use the bathroom, I am like a 90 year old woman holding on to the furniture, door frames, and walls to safely get there. This is what I look like: