HOPE*ann*FAITH

Learning to Live , Again, On Purpose.


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How God Assures Me He’s On It :: A Much Needed Sunday Healing


Sweet, Sad Eyed Boy

Sweet, Sad Eyed Boy

This is my sweet boy. My youngest. My sad little guy. And OH how he had reason for that sweet, sad look. And OH how I sometimes, still, ache for my blindness.

The Man

The Man

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is the man… angry and battling his demons. Very scary demons. And OH how I dreamed of reaching that sweet boy who was hidden in that angry man. I was incapable of reaching into him, to the boy. He wouldn’t let me. I wasn’t, still am not allowed to even hug him. It’s truly heartbreaking for me. And I’m sure his heart is broken. But He battles daily with his illness, his addiction. Heroin. And even when he stumbles, slips and falls flat out; he gets back up to battle. He’s superman in his head. He still thinks he needs to be I think. Because, I couldn’t protect him, because he couldn’t tell me … until they did, when they were barely in grade school … and the man (teen) you see above hid the sweet boy. Seemingly forever.

He fell this week. Wasn’t able to recover from an apparent stumble and now he starts over again. And my heart is broken watching him be sick. Very sick as he starts to stand back up to this illness, this craving, whose whole intent is to kill that sweet boy he has hidden in his heart.

Shane light editThis is him at the beginning of the last run of sobriety. Tired but strong. He’ll be there again.

And I know this because God and I met in worship this morning at church. I started the day very worried about my sweet boy, who hasn’t been so sweet these last few days. He was sick and in pain and irritable. I mean who wouldn’t be when they felt sick; I certainly am not fun when I am ill. But this is different.

There’s nothing I can do. And if I do something I am jeopardizing his life by enabling him. He has to walk out the withdrawl himself. He has to want to feel better. He has to choose between sobriety  and oblivion.

Unlike the cancer his father battles, the boy chose his illness. Chose oblivion over the demons of something he had no say in and I had no knowledge of. The demons who continue to tell him it was his fault. The demons that tell him I should have known. The demons who tell him he’s superman and he can live through the dangerous choices. The demons who tell him no one loves him because he’s unlovable now. This monster heroin quiets the demons I imagine. But then they begin to rustle again and bite … I cannot fathom the pain, though I experience his pain and suffering while he battles the withdrawl and fights for the breath of air that sobriety brings him.

As I sang praises to God today. As I worshiped the Father that promises to heal us. I cried out and from the depth of this mother’s heart and soul I sought my God’s assistance for my sweet boy. And God assured me that with that relinquishing, once again, of my boy to His care, that the boy, the man, would be healed.

During this song, as the lead singer of our worship band and assistance pastor sang this favorite, God met me in my aching for my sweet boy. I quieted and prayed for him and for The Hubs and was assured that He had them, that their healings were imminent, promised. And I quieted into the precious peace of the music, in Father’s presence.

You see, I’ve realized that the enemy has put a hit out on this family. Two of my men are battling grave illnesses, and the boy does not know the promises we believe! So I, WE, as a family must believe for him. He does not know that heroin addiction cannot kill him, as his father knows the cancer cannot kill him, though we tell him.

The boy does not know, as the father does, that because we believe, he is saved from his illnesses and cleansed of his sins, sins that are not even his own, but believes to be. The boy doesn’t believe that Jesus loved him so much that he took the heroin needle for him to the cross and died there with that illness upon Him! So we must believe and pray until the boy understands his worth to the Father.

And what mother, father and brother wouldn’t do this for a boy, for a man?

Oh how I wish the boy believed that he would live. Oh how I wish the boy believed he is loved beyond his mother’s ability to put it in words. Oh how I wish he knew the joy I get when he is well and smiles and is a participating member of this family. A participating member in his own life.

So I leave this post as another prayer to God. It holds no scripture, only a song of worship and praise to our Father God expressing my love and honor to him. I leave it as proof that I acknowledge His response to my need, my boy’s need, this morning. And I thank him again and again, without end that my sweet boy is starting to feel better and is two or three (I’m not sure) days back on the road of sobriety.

To every parent of a child who battles the illness of addiction, or any illness for that matter, I sing this song for you and your child. I pray that God vanquish this demon and send it to hell from whence it came, and I put the enemy and heroin under the feet of Jesus.

We are healed. Our children are healed. Our land is healed. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Thanks for listening to this outpouring of a mother’s heart.

ASignature

The sweet boy’s mom. =)


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Finding my Grateful When Life is Difficult | A Tuesday at Ten Post


God,  Thank you. Love, Me.

God,
Thank you.
Love, Me.

It’s Tuesday at Ten time! And Karen’s prompt is right on time and right on the money, again!

Really, what am I grateful for … so very much!

Life is difficult here in Hutchland, and probably in your life too! Yet I remain grateful, even if I have to be reminded to count my blessings in the moment of challenge, for this life we have.

So how do I find my Grateful in times of difficulty? Here’s the story of how I keep my gratitude in order.

Like yesterday ….

I didn’t think I’d be doing much of anything today. I am tired and not feeling great after yesterday’s medical appointment adventure day! It really was a long day, with some hiccups in what we expected to be the plan, and the outcomes of the day.

Feeling great, and optimistic, when we started out on what we knew was going to be an extended day, turned into information we weren’t expecting, tests and retests and then a long drive home in quiet reflection!

LOL! Quiet reflection! Oh! I am so grateful for the humor we enjoy in this relationship of our, The Hubs and I. Somewhere along the line in our travels back and forth to appointments and chemo and radiation we saw or heard a commercial, or in a movie, that basically ended in one of the characters saying, “from now on the car will be a place of silent reflection.” So the thought of that just cracks us up!

Anyway! Back to grateful!

I’ve had several kinds of “counseling” since about the age of 19. Due to family issues, abuses and neglects in my life. From childhood and far into my adulthood. But the one form of counseling that has had the most effect on my true healing is a simple AA Beginners Learning to Live group and Step Meetings with women who think like I do and incorporates a LOT of God into it.

Over the years I have been grateful to find that AA is actually based on Christian counseling methods! It’s developed, over time, to incorporate all beliefs, but it has never denied it’s Christians roots.

The Higher Power is defined as God in all the literature. =)

All that said, I have learned, from constant consistency from my sponsor, that when I get in a REALLY bad way I need to make a GRATITUDE List.

Not too different from the guidance of the bible and probably originating there:

Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. Colossians 3:16
( I have found in my studies of scripture that many of the most profound messages in the bible are in [fill in your bible book here], chapter 3 and verse 16. Seriously, has anyone else noticed this? God surely makes these things so easy for us to find!)

Gratitude … on Facebook I’ve seen, lately, the encouragement of picking and challenging friends to 5 or 7 days of posting what they are grateful/thankful for. I’ve also noticed, among my list of friends, that if one is having a hard time or has slipped into a negative rut they are especially encouraged to write this new form of the Gratitude List. What I like about that is that it makes me feel accountable to others around me.

After all I’m supposed to be shining my light and showing those around me Jesus. Well it’s hard to do that when I am overwhelmed with the world or my current circumstances. It’s hard for anyone. I have a friend on Facebook, who over the years, I have become very close to. She could be my daughter. Usually a very happy and positive lady, she’s been having a hard time with the world around her. She even made this evident this morning. Her words broke my heart for her. ” Stick a fork in me, I’m done and it really doesn’t take much these days especially in a world where you constantly being shown how worthless you are. Don’t get me wrong, I am grateful for SO much… it’s the rest of it I’m absolutely choking on. HAPPY MONDAY POSITIVE PEEPS!”. I began to pray for her relief from her pain. This lady will soon be back to her wonderful positive self; but it’s so evident how all of a sudden when a tragedy crops up we truly see the world as the fallen place that it is!

This life is not easy, but as humans I think we begin a slow amnesiac type of tolerance to what’s around us; and until something makes those things that we think to be important the small things that they truly are we are unable to remember what is important and to count those amazing everyday blessings that fill our lives!

But! I’ve been taught by my God and my relentless friends of like mind that that is EXACTLY the time to write that list.

A very dear friend, mentor and powerhouse in the Ministry of Prayer, reminds me and encourages me too, in this. I must say, my mentors and friends really do cause me to be so thankful to God for putting them in my life!

I have also come to see my gratitude list as a prayer of sorts, for the day or for the crisis at hand. =)

Further Instructions: Colossians 4:2 Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.

They say:

Just get to it! Write that list of what you are thankful for! Count those blessings! Pray! It changes one’s attitude immediately! It works!

Well it must work, it works for me. It’s guidance from the bible and from any good counselor!

So, what am I grateful for today? After yesterday and the Monday before? Here goes … 10 things I’m grateful for this week, today:

My Gratitude List

1. Those who take the time to remind me to count my blessings. Today I must thank Karen for this, and Margie, who has been doing this for over a week with me, reminding and praying for and with me.

2. That God is our healer, not the doctors.

3. That The Hubs let me know what he thought on that. He said, “It’s ok. God heals me, not the doctors or the chemo!” So grateful for his sharing how he thinks about these things! That said …

4. For good doctors and specialists.

5. That 6 weeks out, The Hubs remains in good health!

6. I am eternally grateful that God made me smart enough to realize His choice for a husband for me almost 26 years ago!

7. I am grateful for God’s faith working in me. It is my stay and fortress.

8. My crazy and odd family!

9. For my Dachshunds and the Cats that remain. Always there and always faithful!

and lastly but never leastly …

10. For this blessed life that God has provided for us here in Hutchland!

Finding the grateful in the roughness of this life is not always an easy task, but I promise you, my sweet readers, that when practiced it has a profoundly positive affect on you, your attitude and ultimately the world around you! I encourage you to join us all at Tuesday at Ten and begin that Gratitude List of yours! We are all here on the same journey. We might be at different legs of the journey but I, for one, am grateful that you are here with me and I am not alone on the path.

Blessings to YOU and thanks for reading.

ASignature

Tuesday @ Ten

Tuesday @ Ten


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Simplicity of Healing :31 Days:


My daily 5 minutes in healing scripture! A 31 Days of Writing in 5 minute challenge. Click the buttons at the bottom of my posts to: Go to all my challenge posts or to go to any of the blogs that hosts these two challenges! The buttons are self explanatory. =)

Now onto the challenge of writing this post in 5 short minutes!

Go!

Walking with God ... Beyond the Cross

Walking with God … Beyond the Cross

Matthew 9: 5-8

Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralyzed man, “Get up, take your mat and go home.” Then the man got up and went home. When the crowd saw this, they were filled with awe; and they praised God, who had given such authority to man.

The world would tell us that certain “illnesses” or “diseases” are terminal. Cancer, heart disease, addictions! Some would even say the afflicted could have avoided these ailments with different lifestyle choices. However, with all of the study and research and information available and applied these things continue to exist.

What is it about healing that is so very hard for the human race?

It is now my understanding that healing is a mind thing. A spiritual thing. Which is easier, to accept forgiveness or to accept healing? I believe for some both are virtually impossible; that is until they come to an understanding of God and His character.

When we decide to believe God and His promises we should begin to live right. And in that living right we begin to heal … Mind, Body and Spirit.

But it always goes back to BELIEF.

Belief in Jesus. Belief in healing. Belief that God means what He says and does what He promises.

And Healing was and remains a promise!

Whether you believe yourself to be Born Again or “just” a spiritual person, God sent Jesus to HEAL the world. ALL of them, not only the “chosen”. ALL of THEM!

“THEM” are US! ALL of US!

Mark 2:17

When Jesus heard this, he told them, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor–sick people do. I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners.”

It’s simple. We can heal, we just need to believe what Jesus came to do. We are often asked if we believe in The Cross … and we say yes. But … do we truly understand the gravity of what that means? The Cross is so much more than a piece of wood, or a tree … The Cross is Jesus and what He provided for us. The Cross is a bridge from the fallen world and a fallen life to a Life of Abundance in all things; salvation, healing, righteousness …

I’ve said it before and I’ll likely end up here several times in this challenge.

HEALING was complete in the Atonement! We said YES to Jesus so essentially we said yes not only to salvation but to complete healing body, soul and spirit. Is it a process? Yes … because we question and we doubt and we delay the renewing of our minds.

The Fruit

The Fruit

The simplicity of healing is at the cross … the completion of healing is beyond the cross; is a changing of the mind and life. Complete healing is a fruit we bring forth in our walk with God.

Stop!

I for one, am not content with just sitting at the cross. I am going to accept my forgiveness, and forgive myself too, get up and walk and complete my healing and the healing of my family. I’m going to work this process and deepen my understanding and relationship with Jesus. Amen.

Thanks for stopping by.

Andrea

Andrea

 

31 days of Five Minute Free Writes

31 days of Five Minute Free Writes

 

 

31 Days Journey to Healing

31 Days Journey to Healing


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I will give you a new heart, He said.


Good morning! It’s Day 2 of 31 Days of my journey to healing in the Word, in 5 minutes of writing.

Today I cheat. For over a year my posts have centered almost entirely on my husband’s (and our family’s) battle with lung cancer. Trust me, this remains my focus, but when I started this challenge it was to get those scriptures of healing deeply within me where they can really do a work.

I honestly want what I’ve seen others obtain: That TRUE understanding of healing and wholeness that God provides. And I honestly want to live and walk in that promise. I honestly want that for my whole family.

When I chose this theme I wrote in the intro that our whole family battled health issues, and this is true. So I’m going to spend the next few days presenting those issues.

My scripture today is Ezekiel 26:36 and this is my health battle. It’s been an almost five year battle.

Go …

My Story ~ My Heart

Joyful

Joyful

 

Hello, my name is Andrea, and this is my story.

Ezekiel 36:26

26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.

I was at that crossroad in my life, I realize, that everyone talked about. I just never imagined it would be on a gurney, on the packed hallway of a local ER.

As the attendees of the sick and dying bustled about, I felt, for a moment, much more than my forty five years. For the very first time in my life. A young doctor, a decade my junior, came to the bedside, to tell me my fate, I assumed. Instead he unceremoniously introduced the Cardiologist.

‘Great!’, I thought silently, ‘I handle this alone, too.’ My husband had not arrived at the hospital, yet.

Astonished, I saw from the young physician’s expression, that these green eyes were as wide as they could go, and glistening with the tears; I was desperately trying to hold them back.

“We want to admit you. You are in congestive heart failure and waist deep in fluids.” the doc said. The rest of what Dr. A. said sounded as if it were moving away from me in a tunnel as I began to pray.

In my head I heard that soft, familiar voice say, “This is what I am going to do. I am going to give you a new heart. I am going to give you a new spirit. I am even going to remove that stone heart from your body and replace it with a heart of flesh, a heart that is for Me, God. I am going to make it possible for you to live according to my will, you are no longer your own. I promise you will find it easy to be obedient to my commands with this new heart. You will live. You are mine, and I AM yours!”

With that, my hearing surfaced and I heard the doctor explaining the condition of my heart.

“…so your heart is enlarged, and like any overworked muscle it is thick and hard. Therefore it cannot pump adequately enough to control the fluids in your body…” Dr. A. said seriously, yet with a soft kindness that was endearing.

I listened intently to everything the doctor said, I was enveloped in an unspeakable peace. Even as he spoke I heard God say, “I have removed the stone heart.” in that still soft voice.

This was the last chance, I realized, that I had been looking for. I listened intently to God, just then, because that is how hope grows up to be faith.

I have yet to stop listening. However, there are obstacles and frustrations, which this new journey has around each bend. And I know this well after almost 5 years. Things have gotten away from me; the fervor the writer of this particular blogger has been dampened by life and desires that hinder her original diligence. That is what I hope this 31 Day challenge within God’s healing scriptures will reignite!

My intention with this challenge is to get ALL of God’s healing scriptures and promise deep within my spirit so that each time an ache or a temptation to deviate from the healthy interjects it’s self into my thinking I can conquer it once and for all with the Word!

FYI: I will refer to the heart illnesses that have been diagnosed with the “heart event”; to the cancer with  the “cancer event”; to my son’s addiction as his “addiction battle”.
Silly or not, this is how I will go about “not giving voice” to the disease that has been reported. I will not empower the works of the enemy by using the names that I have already put under the blood of Christ Jesus.

Welcome, I’m glad you’ve joined me.

* This was an easy Five Minute Post today because I wrote this post for another blog of mine about 5 years ago. I’ve added updates to it, of course i.e. the cancer event and the addiction battle explanations and more. I hope you can forgive me for the quick cheat. I simply wanted you to know the foundation of this 31 Day challenge theme. Thanks.

You can also find me linked with Kate’s Five Minute crew here and The Nester’s friends here.

Andrea

Andrea

 

31 Days: A Journey to Healing

31 Days: A Journey to Healing

 

 

31 days of Five Minute Free Writes

31 days of Five Minute Free Writes


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To Accept the things … Change | A Five Minute Friday Post


Here we are again. Friday. Five minutes of free, from the heart, honest and unchecked writing. FMF has a new home and everyone is welcome.  Come join us and connect with 200+ writers as we bear our hearts with one another, abandoning the restraints of rules and proof reads. Just our hearts and our words writing on the same prompt. The only rule is to write for 5 minutes only with no editing. Just throw caution to the wind and let the cursor follow your heart on to this virtual blank page.

We do ask that you read and leave some love for the writer who hooked up before you.

That’s the heart and fun of this really … reading what another heart feels about the prompt and encouraging them in this journey of writing that we are all on.

 

This weeks prompt is, drum roll please …. CHANGE. Go!

To accept the things I cannot change.

To accept the things I cannot change.

Change and serenity! Really? The thing I could not accept for the longest time was that I could have a sense of serenity when things were about to/in the middle of/or had already changed!

The two seem to be the antitheses of one another, wouldn’t you agree? Most would. You hear them all the time … I think at one time or another each and every human being has made the statements, “I hate change!” or “I just want things to go back to the way they were!”

But do we really? In our natural selves we like our nice comfortable little now. Even if that now is not the height of joy or passion or even just happy and content. We are comfortable with our now and don’t want to look forward to who we will be in the next moment.

And that is the point … Change dictates that I am not the same person I was when I began this post. This post, this prompt, has ignited creativity in my being and at that moment I changed.

Nothing earth shattering just a little shift in my outlook on life or my attitude … a change.

We change from moment to moment. And the bible has a wonderful scripture that, now, makes the changes in my life more acceptable:

2 Corinthians 3:18

As all of us reflect the Lord’s glory with faces that are not covered with veils, we are being changed into his image from glory to glory. This comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.

I’m still working on the acceptance of those things I cannot change; but eventually I hand them to God to handle. I’m getting better about that. And then there’s the courage to change the things I can … now that’s a BIG one … but that’s for another post!

Stop!

Your turn now … click the FMF logo up top and join us!

Andrea

Andrea

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Copyright © AHutchinsonPhotography™ 2007 – 2014- All rights reserved. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material and/or photographs without express and written permission from the writer/photographer is strictly prohibited.


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Gather … ing … T@T


Good evening my friends and Welcome to Tuesday at Ten! I am joining Karen over on her blog, Finding the Grace Within, for her new Tuesday night blog Link up where you have 24 hours to use the prompt word to your liking! It’s not about writing perfectly, or even writing … it’s about connecting with one another creatively!

Whether it be just writing a story behind the prompt word, or being as creative as you wish using photos, poems, art, or graphics – whichever creative way you choose.

You have 24 hours to write and link up your blog at the bottom her page {the link is above} so that others can link up with you. Be sure to visit your “link up” neighbor and spread the joy of connection! Karen will choose writers and their writings to be posted on the blog and the Tuesday at Ten Facebook page each week, so join us in this gathering and give us your best take on …

Gather – go!

Gathering

Gathering

When I ponder the word Gather these days it’s about gathering things to me … not necessarily people, they’re aren’t many around in my current isolated circumstance.  In fact, as lonely as I get sometimes with what’s going on I find myself digressing to my old self and hoping people won’t be around. It’s really a vicious circle for me; the old behavior, I mean. This allows me to indulge in my self-protecting isolation. I hurt so much sometimes, lately, that I don’t want people around, I don’t want to know that they don’t call because they don’t know what to say so it’s easier for them to stay away and while that thought hurts me, I don’t initially do anything about it.

For me it’s gathering those spiritual things that help us to push through the tough times. I have to gather the courage to get through some days; many days lately. The courage to face the facts of The Hubs’ illness. The courage to not break down in tears because the illness is making him tired and absent a lot of the time.

I have to gather the faith to pray. Frankly I have to gather the random access memory in my brain to remember to pray, sometimes.

So how do I handle the isolation and the constant urge not to gather … not to connect?

Quite simply I do the next right thing, even if I don’t want to.

I find things like today’s link up and I gather in with all of you wonderfully talented and spiritually connected writers and I write. Sometimes my writing surprises me with it’s eloquent message and sometimes it’s simply words gathered on a page expressing my feelings or describing my day … not necessarily fit for others to read but necessary for me to continue on this journey of mine.

When I sit with my sponsor and we work through whatever we are working through she always reminds me that the sharing of my thoughts or feelings or just my day cuts the hurt and the pain in half, each time. And for someone who naturally prefers to isolate that is vitally important; as is the gathering with others.

The Word says …. “For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” Matthew 18:20. For the most part I believe I gather here, at these link ups, where we all meet, with other godly women, in pursuit of connecting our faith, in one place, in His name, to make this world a better place. Or at least to make the day better for each other. Helping each other on this journey called life. =)

Gathered

Gathered

I know for me it makes my world a better place. Thank you.

Andrea

Andrea


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The Heart Breaks …


In the light.

In the light.

Today:
I said: “I hate to see your heart get broken again”.
He said to me “My hearts been broken so many times it can’t be broke no more”.
I said, “That’s not true … the heart breaks and breaks and endures more breaks and still the heart wakes one day to love again and endure”.
See that’s how God built the human heart … how He built the human being.
So proud of the work he is doing. So proud of his heart that is beating to endure and improve one more day. So proud of my boy, this man. He’s been through the wringer, life inflicted and self inflicted … and still he breathes and his heart beats another day and he fights …
Love this kid until my breath is taken!

He was listening to this song, and I was captive in the car at the time … it speaks to him, his desire to get his life back. The lyrics are harsh for some so don’t listen if you will be offended. See God sees Shane’s struggle and doesn’t care what he listens to if it moves him closer to Him. Praise God.