Show up, be present, be a presence

So Happy New Year almost!! Hope you all had a most enjoyable  Christmas and will have a blessed new year. I was reading another blog and one phrase that caught my attention was “show up”.  I do not remember the blogger  or the full context of what she was saying but she had lost her phone n the snow and had a choice to make about searching for it or showing up at an event – she chose to show up and look for the phone later.  But do we always choose to show up? I think not, because  sometimes we are physically present, but not a presence , not focused in the now but on future things and lists and events.  And sometimes life requires us to be a presence, not just be physically there but a presence, available not just physically but soulfully and spiritually, cognizant of feelings, both spoken and unspoken.

I have seen this with the youngest as there are times when he cannot or will not verbally say what is happening. And I have to be fully present to understand what the difficulties may be that are affecting his demeanor. Some days this is easy, a trip for a blood draw may impact him due to the car trip and the blood draw. But there are other times when it is not quite so easy and then it requires not just my being there and showing up but also my presence.

so today I am thankful for the presence of the Lord. Always present always nearby always abiding and awaiting my request for more of His presence. So in 2017 I hope to be more abiding and resting in His presence. 

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The difference in small things!

So last week was grey, gray and today the sky is still grey, gray. We have had very cold days and today the high is supposed to be 70 and then tomorrow the high will be 38 – what is with this roller coaster weather. Luckily I have had a lot of practice with riding roller coasters with the youngest’s illness. I do not like roller coasters!!!

We were still in the down cycle when on Thursday we had to get a renewal of the prescription that was not working, so off to the pharmacy and glory – the medicine that does work was finally approved by the insurance company. Light in the  darkness, perfect for this Advent season.

Today while reading a devotional from Rick Warren from his Daily devotions I read that we should be thankful in all things. And then Pastor Warren stated this“Thank God in all things. No matter what happens, give thanks. The Bible doesn’t say, “For all things give thanks.” It says, “In all things give thanks.” You don’t have to be thankful for bad things in your life. You should never be thankful for evil. You don’t have to be thankful for cancer or a car accident or war or abuse. But God says in everything give thanks. Why? Because you know that God’s going to take care of you. You know he’s going to meet your needs. You know he’s going to help you.” 

Do you see the difference?? It struck me that I was struggling to be thankful FOR all things when I should be thankful IN all things. And yes there is always something to be thankful about. I believe that God the Father is In all things, Over all things and Through all things. Our circumstances must never dictate our joy, hope and love in Christ, and yet there are days when I forget this and stumble into the pit of despair and have to refocus letting the three ogres despair, hopelessness and discontent  know that my Lord is stronger , deeper, higher , longer than the misery they dispense to the world.

So today, even in the grey of cold weather, my prayer is like the man whose son was having fits and being thrown into fires ” Lord help me in my unbelief”, because you Lord are the God Father who is In all things, Over all things, and Through all things AMEN

 

Grey, gray day

Yesterday was a grey, gray day. I am not sure why. Perhaps it was the dingy sky awash with grey, gray clouds. Perhaps it was because we are still awaiting pre approval of one of the youngest’s drugs which has kept him stabilized for nearly a year now and since it has gone off preferred meds from our insurance and his Medicaid won’t pick it up we wait. This is perhaps the greatest reason that it was a grey, gray day. We have been in this wait for a week now and it seems like eons and we are carefully watching the youngest for slips downward back into the dark hole of depression which took months to get out of and back into a doing forward moving place.

It was a day for knitting which I did quite a lot of and making elf hats or gnome hats the pattern says. So far I have made three, they are cute but did not lift the grey feeling of the day. And if I could have, I would have crawled back into bed and not dealt with any annoyances that kept popping up throughout the day, like the medication issue, the renter who has bailed and not returned the keys or paid the rent, and the persistent cleaning by hubby when I and my sore back cannot help which makes me feel less, less helpful, less hopeful, just less.

Today is still grey, but busy. We went out to the eye doctor – the youngest had not been in 10 years and he was a bit nervous so I had to go. And hubby also had to go and get his eyes checked. It took most of the morning. Then the youngest confessed his phone had died so after switching batteries and deciding it was truly dead. We then made a plan to take the gifts the church had collected to the organization in order to get the phone taken care of tomorrow. That took the afternoon and the day is about done. And it is still a grey, gray day.

So for my prayer today is for the sun to shine, the grey, gray to lift. For me to remember the promises of “plans to prosper and for good” from the one true Lord of all – especially in this Advent season, to remember Emmanuel “God with us” because He is with us through the grey, gray days and the bright sunny ones also.

Holidays, Holy days, hopeful days

December and the holidays can be a little hectic and when someone has a serious mental health illness well things are far from “normal”.  We have been cleaning and sorting out the house in anticipation of visits from friends and family, some will breeze in and out others will stay and relax. We got the tree up last week and this week will be a busy one of appointments sort of anticipation planning for the influx of the holidays.

img_2598Yes the house appears ready, not sure if I am. We have started our Advent services and there is a quiet peace about Advent. The anticipation of the Birth of Jesus. Funny though Emmanuel (Jesus) means God with us, and if He is with us how can we anticipate His coming?!?! In reflection of the year we have had a precious forward moving year, and are in hopeful anticipation for the next year. But for now we need to pause, reflect, give thanks and even though things aren’t perfect they are okay and much better than last Christmas.

So just for today, and for this Advent season I am pausing to reflect, give praise to God for all the miracles the tiny ones and the big ones. Praise for the blessings that all the children will be home the this Christmas, not scattered about the world serving the God of all in far away lands. Thankful for the quiet times, the pauses, the giggles with the grandson when he gets here. So my prayer is that all will pause, reflect and feel the presence of EMMANUEL GOD WITH US, because He certainly is with us and He is certainly in all things, over all things and through all things. Amen, peace, goodwill, and glad tidings to all may you have a blessed Christmas.