Chest pains, trouble breathing, nausea, heart beating out of my chest....the beast is back. This beast is a senseless, useless, completely unwanted fellow.
This all makes no sense.
That's what I keep thinking. I mean, they tag what I have with phrases like "Anxiety issues" and "panic disorder", and everything I read (especially Christian things) tells you how to relax, stop worrying, let go and blah blah. Here's the thing: I'm not worried. I'm not stressed. This, in my life, is truly SENSELESS.
As I sit here, in the middle of my second try at the medication dance, I am trying desperately to praise Him in this, to not let this consume me. So tired of daily life being all about ME and survival.
I am so thankful God has brought this to mind. I have literally laid here in my bed with my arms lifted high, praising Him.
How? How do people go through these things (and much worse) without a loving heavenly Father who we know loves us and cares what we're going through? I am truly mystified by this.
I'm quite sure that by the time I post this, all will be well. That's the way this dance works, today is awful but tomorrow will be quite all right. So, no worries (Jessica...), I have full faith that at some point we will figure this thing out and I'll be looking back on this as a time when God pulled me out of the pit.
I write this, not so that you will feel sorry for me, or leave me "oh no!" comments. No. I write this because I want you to know that you are not alone. That we all struggle. Whether it's with a mental issue like mine or a physcial or spiritual one. We all struggle together. It's called "community", and it is beautiful.
This life is not a prima donna on stage with her solo performance. This life we live together is much more like a crazy country western line dance. So let's all heel-toe-dosey-doe knowing that we have friends to help us along the way.
Ah, my friends. My sweet, virtual friends. I hope you had a great week. Summer's here, along with the heat that suffocates (at least here in Arkansas), so I hope you had a week filled with water-related frivolity.
I've had a hard time blogging this week, have you? Something about summer laziness.. Show us what you've got! This is a just for fun link-up, which means you can post your blogs about any subject (within reason, we are G rated...). Please link back to the party so we can keep it going, and feel free to grab the button on the side to pretty up your page (because it's pink).
"Ridiculous Happiness" is the title of my newest Facebook cover photo. In case you aren't "friends" with me (not my Pieces of Amy page, I try to keep that one a little professional....but I do not try such things on my own page), here it is.
I have no purpose in this post, except to say that I love PicMonkey, and am still laughing at myself.
Hello Friday Fans! Welcome to your weekend. I hope your week has been a special one. Mine has been....interesting. Let's just say that this BEAST they call panic disorder has been stalking me. If it seems like I disappeared from the social media world, I'm sorry! It makes me an unreliable person, and that's one of the worst parts of it. Next week will be better! I've informed the BEAST that he will be caged.
And now for YOU! I have really been enjoying reading all your link-up posts. I've been trying to comment on your blogs and say thanks for linking up, but this week has been iffy - so if I haven't commented I'm sorry! I am reading them!
Her post "Relax Your Grip" was touching! The fact that she opened with the verse that has been helping me hold on this week, really reached out and grabbed me. Then she goes on to write a post that really spoke to me about discouragement, especially with where i am right now in my health. I don't want to tell you too much, I want you to go read it! Thanks for sharing, Donna!
Now it's your turn! Keep those great posts coming. I can't wait to grab a cup of coffee this week and just enjoy all of YOUR creativity! Don't forget to link back so we can keep the party going, and grab the button on the right to share the fun! If you haven't become a "follower", jump in! When I reach 100 I'm having another giveaway!! Thanks everyone!
My phone buzzes, I look down from the missions lesson my co-teacher is presenting, expecting it to be a text from my husband, only to see a text from a sweet lady down the hall saying "your daughter has some big news for you!".
Ten minutes later, Sadie passes me in the hallway and says "Momma! I accepted Jesus into my heart!" I smile, say "that's great honey", and as she walks away I look around to see others looking at me and know they are wondering why I am not weeping and hugging and emotionally out of control. For a moment I feel like a REALLY BAD CHRISTIAN. But they don't know....
They don't know that Sadie has accepted Jesus into her heart 80 times in her bedroom. That she asks questions all the time, that she's struggling to figure it all out and reading her Bible more than I do. That she watched her friend get baptized in front of everyone in worship rally yesterday and REALLY wants to get in that cool tub. That she is in process....that she is "being saved..."
See, we've worked with either youth or college students for the past 12 years of our lives. We've seen the damaging effects that can happen when someone is rushed to say a prayer, "accept Jesus", and baptized before they really understand what it all means - then later in life they struggle with knowing if they really ever had salvation. We've seen so many kids "rededicate" their lives, when really it was probably for the first time. I have been that kid.
Not all of them, mind you. Some really do find Jesus at 7 and "get it" and never turn back. My personal opinion is that this is rare.
There is no magic in that prayer that is prayed when the lights are low, and the music is playing softly and someone is speaking dramatically hushed. I want my children to accept Jesus with their EYES WIDE OPEN, counting the cost and knowing that this is not game or a fairy tale or an emotional experience.
So, my husband took Sadie for "coffee" that night and they talked about it. We knew after the talk that she is still a bit confused. She thought you "become a Christian" after the baptism, so there's still some work to be done. He used an illustration with her that I thought was really intriguing.
He put a peppermint in her hand. He had her hold it, smell it, observe it. There is so much you can know about that peppermint just by being an observer. You could research how they were made and what herbs are in them, and know from the smell how they might taste. But, until you put that peppermint in your mouth, it is all just intellectual. There is no personal tie to that peppermint until it is in your mouth and in your stomach. You could never TRULY say that you knew peppermint, unless you've actually eaten one.
As parents, we personally believe that Sadie is holding that peppermint and lifting it towards her mouth. Her taste buds are starting to water as she anticipates the minty freshness. BUT, it's not quite there yet.
Is it for you?
I wouldn't want you to miss a blog post, why don't you subscribe now? If you'd like Pieces of Amy in your email, click here, to receive it as RSS in a reader click here. Enjoy!
I mean, I love that my kids love VBS. I love that kids learn about Jesus in creative ways. I love that other people seem to love working at VBS. I love lots of things about VBS, I'm just NOT peppy enough for it. I'm just not. You have to be peppy for VBS and anyone who knows me knows that I...am....NOT. But, I did it, and I'm glad I did. Now I'm going to sleep for two weeks.
Leah linked up a very thought provoking post this week! I would tell you all about it, but I really want you to go there, so I don't want to spoil it for you!
Aside from the devotionals she blesses us with, she also sells the most beautiful crosses, picture frames, mirrors....amazing stuff that would look great in any of your living rooms! And BONUS, she sells them to raise the funds for her family to adopt from overseas. Any of you guys need a great gift idea, or even just some new decor for your cozy nest? Head over to Joy-full Creations! You'll bless your home with beauty, and bless the life of a child who will soon (hopefully!) be adopted!
Now for the part you've all been waiting for.....it's link-up time!!! Link your favorite post from the past week so we can have a little peak in at your life! Don't forget to link back here so we can keep the party going, and grab the button on the side - it's my free gift to you, ha! Have fun guys!
It's 12:30. I've just driven my children home from a long and fun-filled day at Vacation Bible School. I've spent the day teaching Missions to 4 groups of amazing little second graders. It's lunch time and I'm starving.
It's 1:30. I am lying in bed, staring at the wall. All I feel like I need for the rest of the day is to stare at that wall and listen to the white noise of the fan next to me. My children ask me questions but I don't hear them, all I hear is the white noise and all my mind can think of is that wall.....
It's 3:30. Maybe I'll get up now.....maybe I'm ready to re-enter my own world. Maybe....
A question to all you public schoolers out there - HOW IN THE WORLD DO YOU DO THIS EVERY DAY????? We would not survive public school. Only three days of everyone getting up, getting ready and having to be somewhere has almost killed us. And you guys have to do it EVEN EARLIER. Blessings on you, you are heroes.
I've been pondering prayer lately. I have daily quiet times, dig into the Word, try to help out at church, lead Bible studies, etc. - but my prayer life is like an anemic weak little child. I pray, but I have realized through the years that I never really learned "how to" pray. I know that may sound silly because everyone can pray, it's just opening your mouth and speaking to God. BUT, I feel like there is something missing in my prayer life, so I've been praying about it - ha.
In my ponderings, I've been reading a lot more about prayer. I'm sure I'll be writing about it here and there, but for now I wanted to share this bit I found in a little book by Oswald Chambers titled Prayer, A Holy Occupation. It hit me between the eyes and made me think through my own prayer life, I hope it does the same for you.
"The job of every Christian is to pray. Plain and simple. Yet we want to do more than simply pray. We want to do something important for God; we want to be someone important to Him. We want to build; we want to mobilize; we want to show our strength and exert our influence. Prayer seems like such a small thing to do - next to nothing at all in fact.
But that's not what Jesus said. To Him prayer is everything; it's a duty as well as a privilege, a right as well as a responsibility. We use prayer as a last resort; Jesus wants it to be our first line of defense. We pray when there's nothing else we can do; Jesus wants us to pray before we do anything at all.......
And so we try to help God along. Many times we even try to answer our own prayers. We have the idea that more people will become Christians if we can make God look good to them. So we try to convince them of God's generosity by proving that He answers prayer. If we can help God spruce up his image a little, we can get more people on his side. And that's what he wants us to do, right?
Wrong. He wants us to pray. Always and about everything. During times of joy and sorrow. He wants us to talk to him, not about him. He wants us to talk to him about unbelievers before we talk to unbelievers about him.
Prayer is our business, our only business. Prayer is our Holy Occupation. Plain and Simple."
Helloooo Weekend! I'm thrilled it's Friday, and I'm thrilled YOU are here! Thanks for stopping by. Grab a cup of coffee, get cozy and dig through some wonderful blogs linked up below. Trust me, you'll be glad you did.
I've made a few changes to Just For Fun Fridays (in this ever-evolving blog world...), from now on
Friday is going to be about...
No longer will there be long discussions about me, me, and me on Friday. I'm going to start picking a blogger from the previous weeks' link-up and feature YOU, you beautiful people.
In honor of Memorial Day, this week I'd really like to send you all over to Diane at
Her link-up last week to a post about her husband returning from deployment after an entire year (OH MY WORD!) had me sitting in tears at my computer. I just peeked through them again and teared up all over again. Thank you, Diane, for being a strong Army wife and holding down the fort while your husband was defending our freedom.
We are so thankful for men like him and wives like you!
Make sure you also check out her business link at sweeteuropeandreams.com and see all the wonderful treasures she has brought together from all over Europe. Her blog about the County fair made me wish I lived closer!
Now, it's your turn! Link-up to the Pieces of Amy community, and make sure to link back so we can keep the party going. Please grab my button (it's hanging out over on the right side, just waiting to be copied...) and share our community with the world!