Seeing is Believing Unfortunately

When you are suffering loss, it is so hard to see it as an opportunity. And yet it is. It can be “the site of your next miracle” (Graham Cooke)–it only depends on choice–your choice.

The thing is God can’t (won’t) choose for us. And if you go into discouragement or anger, it will take you down a completely different road–one that gets darker and darker. Physical hormones cause it! So use your beautiful power!

It’s hard, I know. Negativity is so natural to us. The hardest place for me to fight discouragement is when people don’t choose what I can see would be so good for them. Still? After 25 years of doing therapy with people, I still want to make them choose? I know they have to do it. I KNOW it. And yet it can get to me. They can’t see what I see. And I can’t choose for them.

You know, wars have been fought, people died, because people can’t make other people choose what they want. And most often it is fueled by fear or greed. What is it that gets to you? And more importantly, how do we get out of these potholes? How do we choose our next miracle?

Stop the negative thoughts. Anything that is against you, anything that scares you or stifles your energy and motivation. Switch tracks. Remember there are Four on your side fighting with you and Three of Them don’t lose unless we don’t choose.

If nothing, but fear and negativity, is in your head, ask God for a positive thought. If you are already too negative to hear Him, just start saying thank you for the most basic things–sight, movement, food, clothes, a home–many, many people are without or losing these things. By the time you’ve given thanks for three things you will feel better. And if even that can’t get out of your mouth, start jumping around saying “Praise God!” “Thank you Jesus!” That will make you smile and you will open up the channel to God and the dark side will leave.

By that time, you will be able to do what you need to do: ask God for vision, a plan, perspective on your situation, or give yourself to Them: my Three Favorites: Abba, Adonai (Jesus) and Ruach.

Then practice Their presence by asking, “What do I do with this?” or “What should I say now?” or just by tuning in every time you feel good (praise) or less than good (asking for help).There are Three gracious and glorious beings who are crazy about you all the time–even when you mess up! Even when you’re negative and feel like a worm! They are still waiting to hang out with you! How cool is that?


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Epiphanies Everywhere

Just this morning another lie surfaced. I was sitting with God and somehow it came up. I blurted, “But I always thought You wanted me to feel bad about myself!”

As soon as I said it I felt foolish, knowing it to be total and utter foolishness. But there it was–my truth. And it was ok, I could feel His understanding smile.

I know better. How amazing it is, right there and then, to ask Him to tell me the truth and heal it. And even though I know it, it always almost takes my breath away. “I want you to enjoy life, to love being you, and love others.” Wow! The truth is amazing, but the best part is getting rid of that ball and chain I’ve been dragging around. And it came from religion, no doubt. Sad! We weren’t taught about the true self and the false self. They didn’t know it–even though it was always there. Self was bad period.

So how happy it was to attend “The Epiphany” last weekend. A friend of mine said, “He thinks just like you do,” when he told me about it and Graham Cooke. I was pulled in. And I was captivated by the description. But it was tough getting there–a lot of obstacles and opposition. (Of course.)

I’ll summarize it for you. We need to “unlearn” all the negatives we’ve been taught, or taught ourselves, and began to see that the gospel (religion at its best) really is good news! Everything about it! And when we can see it from a new perspective (my thing, if you know me) we can live in awe and wonder, having new epiphanies (ah-ha moments) daily.

Graham started with (in my words) if your false-self was crucified with Christ why do you keep feeding it as though trying to keep it alive? We need to see differently, think differently, act differently. We don’t have to live in anxiety and fear. We give power to what we focus on.

Relearning can be fun because God is always giving us another chance to learn. We need to see our mistakes as I could have learned… give me another chance! And, of course, He will. Anger and fear allow someone else to have power over you–you have other choices (the nine fruits of the Spirit).

You don’t like what they are doing? But do you like what you are doing? Then change it by choosing. We could die to our false selves and have a wonderful time doing it–learning how to live in the presence of God. There are always four of you fighting your enemies, and Three of Them are omnipotent!

We have been given everything–a credit card from God–all we have to do is activate it. We can give gifts of blessing to everyone. Jesus taught that  everyone can be loved and accepted, no one is safe from blessing. All we have to do is “practice Jesus” asking, “What do I do with this situation?” “What do You want me to ask for?” “What does this mean?”

Too many of us believe the lies that God is angry, that we get blessings for performance, when the truth is Christ in you attracts favor, looks for favor, expects favor.

When you have to unlearn something God is putting His finger on the site of your next miracle–grace is the empowering presence of God that creates the true you! God doesn’t do shame or judgment–Jesus bought your inadequacy–revival is a lifestyle.

After Jesus left, we read, “The Christians are coming! Those people who turn the world upside down,” as if it was a bad thing, but truly many couldn’t wait for them to show up! These are the people who can heal us! Who have gifts of healing and righteousness to give us! They are extraordinary at loving! That’s how people should feel about us. ( This was the best part–as he emphasized how people would feel if we were like that and he  jumped up and down shouting, “The Christians are coming! The Christians are coming!” It was great!)

Move from a sin-conscious culture, like Paul did, to one that gives gifts of righteousness. Why can’t unlearning be joyful? What helps Ruach (Holy Spirit) the most is loving the learning. Being open.

You are completely and utterly adored by God now! If He is wonderful, we are one of His wonders. There is nothing to be afraid of. If identity in Christ dominates the way you walk in life you will practice faith in his constant presence by continually asking, “What do you want from me right now?” or “How do I handle this?”

These are some of his “brilliant perspectives.” Just had to share it.



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On Making a Marriage Good

Today is our 27th anniversary. We have almost twice as many good years as bad ones! So to those of you struggling in your marriage: It can get better–even good. It depends on these two things: you have to be willing to look at yourself honestly and be willing to change. Plus, you have to be willing to see what isn’t yours and not take all the blame, just your part.

Or said another way, you both have to want to make things better– a win-win for both of you. If you are connected to someone who doesn’t want to make things better, or won’t look at him/herself, set a certain amount of time to step back and pray that they will  see the light and themselves. If it doesn’t happen, get out. You can’t change someone else, only God can. And He has to have permission. If God can’t get permission to work, then only stay as long as you clearly hear Him telling you to. If He can’t change your mate, you aren’t going to!

Do not stay in a toxic environment, it will make you toxic unless you live in close relationship to God.

Having said that, when I told God I wanted to leave a few years after we were married, He told me, “Stay put. You’ve got things to learn.” I was obedient. And now I’m glad. I’m glad for the stability it gave my kids, and for what God did in me and in our relationship. I learned to depend on God, and to look to him to get my needs met. A year later my husband decided to leave and God took him in hand and completely changed our relationship. I’ve written that story here before.

Before that it seemed like an impossible situation, causing more stress than I could handle. But I was contributing. I was very defensive, and very good at blaming, and very good at hiding from seeing it. (And I thought I had learned how to step back and let him be him and do his own thing and experience his own consequences before I married him!)

What I didn’t know, even though he regularly told me, was that I didn’t know how to love. I have made some progress, but truly, I feel like I’m just learning to see myself now, over 20 years later! When what you feel inside is different than how you act outside, you often miss it. And it takes the grace of God to see that.

It takes being loved to see that you have had no idea how to love. And nobody can love you like God. He is so gentle and so kind  and so funny it is amazing. He will never shame you, never leave you. He is always there, always listens, always cares, but He is honest. When He confronts, it heals, and even though it hurts like you’ve never experienced, it’s a good hurt that brings change, and doesn’t last long. He’s completely for you, completely trustworthy, completely good. He’s wild about you, and He’s totally worth the risk of whatever you think you might lose. Nothing compares to being loved by Him (and there is three of Them who love you like that for goodness sake!)

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Life Lessons

Today is my grandson’s birthday–he’s twelve–and has been having some issues in that transition time between childhood and adolescence–doing things he wouldn’t normally to fit in. We can all relate.

It took me back to when I was twelve–glad I don’t have to go through that again! And some of the things I’ve learned since then. So I decided to share the letter I wrote to him.

“Today you are twelve!
In Jewish culture, the one Jesus grew up in, you would be considered a man today. They would call you a Son of the Law. And you would read and recite in Hebrew. You would then be considered responsible for yourself–your choices. It seems pretty heavy to me for a twelve year old, but judging from the Jewish mothers I have known, I doubt if they really get to make too many!

Twelve was a hard year for me. I became very aware that people weren’t as good as I thought. (I didn’t know yet that we were all a mixture of good and evil, that we are born with two natures: one that responds to God and one that responds to evil.) So I became very disillusioned with people–very disappointed in them, quite cynical, actually.

I hope that doesn’t happen to you. It took me years to pull out of it. I may not be completely out of it yet, but I understand it at least. Some happy things I have learned since then, that perhaps you can learn from and avoid a lot of pain and pitfalls for yourself, are:
1. Making good choices are so important: good choices make a good life and prevent pain.
2. Mistakes are not sin, (unless you allow them to separate you from God, so take them to God no matter how you feel–He is kind), and failure is not final and seldom fatal, but both are good teachers if you can embrace the pain.
3. God is all good, there is no evil in Them at all–none, nada, zip. They won’t ever let you down. They can’t. It’s not who They are. But there will be times when you feel like They do. They know suffering here can build character. And They want you there–happy forever. They want you fulfilled and happy here too, and will use most anything to get a relationship with you.
4. Doing what you want (aka rebellion or indulgence) usually brings suffering long term, once you’re past the flash of gratification. Typically, it works against the laws of your being. But if it pleases you to please God, you can do as you please.
5. Taking care of your body is so worth it. It makes your mind work better, makes your attitude brighter, promotes motivation and dreams, and it really makes getting old easier. (How many grandmas do you know who can stand on their heads at 66? And who take no medications?)
6. Discipline is not a bad thing, and self-discipline is a great gift to give yourself. Put good self-care in now and later it will come automatically, leaving energy free for creative endeavors.
7. Nobody will ever love you like Jesus. You’ll never be sorry for investing there. That is one of the decisions I reaffirmed at twelve, and I’ve never been sorry.

Happy Birthday! Have a wonderful day and year!
I was looking for a book for your present, when I heard God say, “Why not give him yours?” Somehow I thought mine were too…but I guess not. It certainly is bringing two of my great loves together–you and God. Hopefully, the books will get there today.

I love you,
Grandma Boo”

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Experiencing God

I’m hesitant to post this because it is so personal. And then I had the thought I’ve posted plenty of negative personal things in he said/she said detail, so why not something positive? You’ll understand after you’ve read it.

So I was on the plane, in the middle seat, flying back from a great sisters’ trip, and decided to journal for my time with God which I’d missed. Our pastor has encouraged us to journal on scripture–especially the ones he is preaching on. We write what God is saying, and then what He is saying to us specifically.  He’s just started a new series on Mark. This is Mark 1:8 “I immerse you in water, but He will immerse you in Holy Spirit.”

“I love the thought of being completely immersed in You, Ruach! (Hebrew for Holy Spirit, pronounced Roo ak.) The closest I have come to realizing it is sitting in Your lap, leaning against Your chest in the morning–I’m just waking up, still sleepy, and snuggled up as I have often seen my daughter’s children do after a nap. I love that loved, relaxed feeling. I want to feel that relaxed, that loved, all the time. I want the love to ooze out of me as Val described her friend.

“I know I’m not that comfortable with people or myself yet, but I’m better. Thank You that at least I can see a bit of improvement. I know You don’t usually let us see our improvement because it doesn’t bode well with us–over time we get careless, thinking we don’t need You. I want to always know I need You, but I want more just to want You, and that precious time with You–want to let You flow through me.

“Make me not have to need people’s feedback and approval. At least this trip I don’t think I gave offense to anyone! Thank you for that. And thank You that the meeting with my nephew and nieces was so special.”

And He answered!

“I am so proud of you, and so grateful for your heart. You wanted to share your love–My love–with others in getting them all together. I know that. And I did let you see that I understood your motive by inspiring the writing of that text to C.”

Thank You.

“You are so welcome My Love.”

You see why I was hesitant to share it. But if it helps just one person open up to God in experimental, experiential relationship, then it is worth it. He will be just as affirming, sweet and gentle with you too.

The only religion worth anything is a relationship with God that is real to you experientially.

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15 Ways to be Happy During Trying TImes

Exercise–get your blood moving.

Sunshine–changes your mood and elevates Vitamin D (especially important for depression) 15-20 minutes a day on large skin areas–arms, legs, back, or face (If you’re in cold country take a supplement).

Enjoy one thing–switch tracks, get out of the “aint it awful” groove.

Make good stick–Spend 10-30 seconds on something positive to anchor it in your brain.

Ask a question–Is what I think true? Really? Do I KNOW it? Or am I imagining or being a “mind-reader”?

Put bad in Perspective–in 5 years…in 10 yrs…will this matter?

Change your Thoughts–Your brain can only hold one thought at a time –let go of the negative and find a good one.

Take back your power–Choose –Change your attitude.

Smile–It changes your mood.

Breathe–7 seconds in, 7 seconds out–for 20 minutes. Doing this daily can change your life. It’s the #1 antidote for stress.

Plan time with a Friend/Make a friend.

Try something new–learning is positive and gives new perspective.

Get a Relationship with God–all you have to do is ask.

Spend time alone with God–meet Him in your living room, nature, Holy books.

Pray–talking to God always works if you are willing to learn to live in faith.



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A Perspective Excerpt from Love’s Playbook 5

I’ve decided to share a couple of pages from the book I’m working on. It’s book five in the series: Exodus and the plagues. This is a break in the story for a new perspective.

“Whether or not Satan can create brings up an interesting question. Does God create destructive elements—in this case flies? Egypt has historically had the dog fly. It is large and venomous with a painful bite. And this one God instructed Moses to tell Pharaoh would not come on the Hebrews because God would make a distinction between Egypt and His special people.

It’s possible the first three hadn’t affected them either, but this is the first time God specifically tells Pharaoh it won’t, to make sure he is aware of it. Does God protect his own people from God? Or from enemies?

Back to the original question. It is true Satan doesn’t have ability to create life from nothing. But we have all seen how he can twist God’s gifts to create aberrations. Look at the suffering and disease he has created from sex. Or just the diseases he creates in us from ignorance and from taste, let alone viruses he creates. Remember in this series how Lucifer was given the chance to study the laws of nature and see what he could create. No doubt, he learned a lot about nature and its laws.

At that time he was still under God’s influence, and getting to fulfil his dream. He had not yet defected and activated the law of sin and death. But imagine what he must have done in the lab after he had activated entropy. He is called “the destroyer” in Exodus 12:23 and also in the book of Hebrews (2:14). He would destroy all of us (or have us destroy each other) if God allowed. It’s who he has become.

This is the first plague where it says the land was corrupted—literally the Hebrew is “the land was destroyed.” Would God have done this? Or would he have allowed the dark side to do their thing? I think it is the latter. I don’t believe God is the creator of evil. I think it is the absence of good as death is the absence of life.

Yes, They allow it to exist for choices, but They are winning the “right” now to banish evil, keeping it only as a personal choice forever, because it brings death. God has allowed Satan to have the power of death as long as he is kept alive. When God stops shielding him, he and all of his will cease to exist. Evil can’t exist in God’s presence. Revelation 20 says death and hell will be thrown into the lake of fire which is simply a metaphor for the dark side rushing into God’s unbridled energy to take his new city. (See Rev. 20:7-10.)

So why haven’t we questioned this before? We didn’t have the perspective. Our collective consciousness thought God does what He wants to because He is God, and thought the fear of God was literal along with other metaphors. Most people served God from fear—not what God wants! Now we know that another translation is more accurate: fear is best translated reverence or respect.

So why did God allow this? Because to protect our freedom there has to be hooks to hang doubt on. God can’t make everything completely plain until someone asks. Some things had to be shrouded in mystery until we started questioning and searching for a better understanding.

I don’t suppose I am the first one to question or understand this, just one who dares to interpret scripture this way, write it down and publish it.”

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Interference–Bad and Good

So the day after my post on anger, my little sister texted to ask if her sisters wanted to do a seven-day fast with her for our kids. We said yes; I was thinking maybe I’d fast from sugar, which isn’t a big deal since I don’t usually eat it, and then thought I should ask God. I did and He said immediately, “Fast negativity and blame towards your husband.” So I agreed thinking it would be good after our week.

No sooner had I agreed, than I got hit with little sleep and a load of resentment and blame like you would not believe! It was so intense, I knew it wasn’t just me, and choosing wasn’t cutting it! So I called for back up and got it, but that evening got slammed again and had to shout out to God again.

It wasn’t too rough after that, except I had trouble sleeping which always makes it harder. And at the end I got slammed again, but got through it. I thought I’d done pretty well. Not perfect but well.

The very next day my husband nicely confronted me that I seemed to have gotten more negative and he couldn’t take it. I recognized this was engineered by the dark side, so noticed, but didn’t hook in–didn’t even comment.

But five minutes later he was getting popcorn and I remarked that he couldn’t be hungry–we had eaten lunch not that long before. He exploded that I was like a warden, and I exploded back that he should shut up because NOW I was hurt and angry. I went into the other room and lay down on the bed and talked to God. Emotions are so crazy! So strong, so irrational, so quick!

I had somewhere to go in an hour, and had planned to do something or other and all I got done was processing. I felt so bad, so stupid, and knew that our date night, and the next two or three days were ruined. So God gave me a picture of what I could do–kneel by his chair and say, “I’m sorry. I don’t want to be negative.” But I said, “I can’t. I can see it would work, but I can’t do it.”

So He asked if this was worth it, and I thought about how the evening would go down and the next few days, and said, “No, it’s not, but I can’t do that. So if YOU can do it (get me to) go ahead, but I know I can’t.”

I was watching the clock–I had ten minutes, then five, then three, but it took less than one–on my way out I didn’t kneel, but I laid my hand on his arm and said, “I don’t want to be negative, I’m sorry,” and I left–amazed. I was free! My whole attitude changed, and it was the truth–I don’t want to be negative!

When I went home everything was normal. No pain. No lost time.

You don’t have to feel it, you just have to choose. God can do it for you.


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Reaction to Ivanka and Trump

I thought I’d published this three weeks ago, after the convention, but I guess it didn’t come out. Ivanka’s speech for Trump was amazing! I haven’t liked him from the beginning. He seemed like a hot-head who doesn’t have self-control or filters– “a loose canon” I think I’ve heard him described. Not someone you want representing your country as its leader. I’ve been amazed at his appeal, and then concerned. Is this really what the majority of people in our country are like?

I couldn’t believe it when it got down to him and Hilary. I’m not comfortable with her either. Although truthfully, I think many presidents have great dreams and ideals, and find out when they get there, that special interests and big business choke the democratic process. I don’t think they can do nearly what they plan to. Throw in a congress in opposition, you can do less. But then that is the system of checks and balances, and thank God we have it!

I like Obama’s even-tempered reasonableness. So I was curious what Trump was going to in his acceptance speech, and first I heard his daughter, Ivanka. She was a class act, coming across as real, genuine, factual and emotional. Not over-the-top emotionalism, but engaging and believable. She made him sound so real and credible, she drew me in. Well maybe… I was thinking. She made him glow. She was glowing, talking about “My father…my father…” At one point I even thought this is a speech Jesus could give about His Father!

The one thing that made Trump credible to me was his children. If you have four successful adult children who like you, and will support you, that speaks well for you, and it impressed me–especially since his wife isn’t much older than them. And then to hear them speak as well as they did, well they could be bought or threatened I thought, but then I heard that his daughter worked for him and has for ten years, and still said those things. She couldn’t be lying. I was caving.

I said to my husband, “He would do himself a favor not to say anything.” But that isn’t realistic, I guess.

And then Trump started off his speech trumpeting about Obama and Clinton and all the mistakes and screw-ups they’d made! It was a real downer. It was so typically political it made me sick. I thought he was supposed to be different. Why can’t you at least make the comparison general and tasteful if you have to do that? He finally did get around to saying some things he wanted to do, but then so does every candidate.

He ended strong, even managed to get in a dash of humility and gratitude. His confidence is impressive if slightly over the top. A bit narcissistic sounding, like we’ve got Trump, who needs God?

I have to say it almost makes you want to see if he can walk his talk. His best asset is his daughter. If he wants to win he should have Ivanka do all his speeches. Better yet, let’s elect her!

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Working Your Way Out of Anger, Fear, Hate, Blame…

It’s so crazy how far you can grow and still fall back into the same old stupid patterns with their same old stupid powerful feelings in a minute.

Actually the slide doesn’t start in a minute, but once it has begun a minute is all that’s required for another thought to take you from 0-60. Maybe even a second. It’s unnerving.

And worse is the incredible surprise that this can still happen after all the work and repair and growth–after all the good things that have happened! And then comes the shame and doubt. I will never get it. I will never be a good person, good wife, good mother… 

The truth is you will always be a human; some triggers will get healed if you ask for help or have an understanding partner, and some will not because you won’t be able to get to their source, and some might be hormonal. But the point is don’t get discouraged; we are all in the same boat and we all need forgiveness. We had an episode like that this week, and the anger is what startled me. I would give it to God, let it go, and another thought would come and in a second I would be all caught up in it again.

I was so gratified to talk to my friend who I thought was way past that and discover they had had the same thing this week!

The more awareness you have the more control you will get–that’s how it starts to get better. But you may not eradicate reactions completely. You will always have to say I’m sorry, if you let loose and express your feelings. Thank God I didn’t get that far. There was plenty I wanted to say, but I’m glad, now that I’m through it, that I didn’t. I only had to say sorry to God. And I know He (They) are always so happy to hear it and take me back to sanity. They never get tired of helping us even though we get tired of asking for help. It’s so embarrassing, but God is never shaming.

Ruach (Holy Spirit) kept giving me little thoughts to grab on to when I was so angry, and then I would calm down; and then another negative would come and off I’d go. Finally I remembered to choose, but I almost wanted to be angry. But was it worth it? Yes! Well no, I know what anger does to your body. No, it is not worth it. And then I started telling myself. Just choose. All you have to do is choose. Even when you know what to do and have told people 1000 times, it’s hard.

What always gets me out is writing. I got my devotional and my journal and spent some time alone with God. That smoothed it all out. I fought it for at least 12 hours, but why? Just because I’d been wronged! So what.

God said, “Have you given me control of you life? Do you think I can handle it?” Sometimes I actually say no, because I know They don’t control other people’s choices. But can They work around that? Yes, they are very creative. Peace is worth it. Trust is worth it. He is worth it! But we have to listen and choose.



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