Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Overblown Diagnosis by Susan L.

It doesn't take long for TV shows to exploit psychiatric labels. A new one for me was Complex Grief Syndrome. The person was hospitalized against their will I believe. That is a terrifying thought. Apparently, in the new book of psychiatric diagnosis, the DSMV5, the human condition is concidered being mentally ill. Since when did handling situations in our own time and our own way mean we're broken or sick? Against who's standards? Psychiatrists? I've had personal dealings with cruel and twisted doctors who should not be in the psychiatric field. Talk about God comlex and bullies! Hey, if they can label humanity and the shoe fits! On second thought, if the human condition can be diagnosed and put in a box, those of us struggling against prejudicial labelling will have lots of company. Even if it is against their will. However, I will share that my own, asked for diagnosis of PTS and depression did open doors of understanding. There is the key. I asked. It should and must be up to us if we want or need to know. Not a doctor. "You are completely born in sins, and are you teaching us? (the Pharisees) And they cast him out." Jn 9:34

Monday, 29 April 2013

Black Tides by Susan L.

The gray day is matching my mood. My heart is heavy. Church was tough yesterday. The married couples had finished the Marriage Course so the pastor's sermon capped it off. He taught about the Biblical ways a marriage is meant to be with God at the head. I should have listened to the inner voice urging me not to go. It was tough to sit through and extremely triggering. After getting the drunken phone call Saturday morning...yah. Crappy memories of my own marriage. I sat there fighting the urge to run by drawing on the programme. I tried not to listen. That didn't work too well but someone was watching. She complimented my artistic abilities and asked if I would be willing to help her. She needs to design a medieval castle for the children's summer Bible camp. I leapt at the idea and the opportunity, glad to be distracted and glad the Lord has given me a way to help the church. As for the rest, tomorrow is a new day. "And the Lord will deliver me from every evil work and preserve me for His heavenly kingdom. To Him be glory forever and ever." 2 Tim 4:18

Sunday, 28 April 2013

Tangents by Susan L.

My son and daughter-in-law were over yesterday for dinner. Both of them are talented artists so a good chunk of our conversation revolved around art. They taught me about tangents. It's just like the old saying, "Off on a tangent" when a person gets hold of an idea and goes on and on about it. In art, the same thing happens only with images. A classic example is the photo of a person with a tree growing out of their head. What a tangent does is flatten a picture. Objects in the foreground and background end up connected so it robs the image of depth. I had done a little water colour painting of a split rail fence with a dilapidated old barn in the background. There was something about it I wasn't happy with. When the three of us looked at it last night, sure enough, there it was. A tangent. One of the fence posts looked like it was part of the barn. Now I know another thing to watch out for in my drawing and painting. In my writing? I'll try and keep my tangents to the few paragraphs for my blog! "My heart trusted in Him and I am helped; therefore my heart greatly rejoices, and with my song I will praise Him." Ps 28:7

Saturday, 27 April 2013

Preaching Practice by Susan L.

The phone rang shortly after three a.m. waking me out of a sound sleep. Fuzzy, panicky thoug of my elderly parents buzzed through my mind as I grabbed the reciever. "Hello?" It waa a man's voice my sleep addled head didn't recognize. "You know who this is? It's your best friend!" I asked him what number he was calling. He repeated himself. Eventually he quoted my home number as the number he was calling although he refused to identify himself. I could hear laughter in the background so I hung up. This man was not a kid playing a prank. His actions were purposeful and his voice was too mature. As I lay in bed, it dawned on me who it was. It took a while to fall asleep, part of me waiting for him to call back. Thankfully, he didn't. Am I angry? You bet! Am I worried? Yes, that too. I pray this won't happen again, that it was some wise idea of drunken entertainment. Meanwhile, I can choose to forgive him and give his actions to the Lord. He knows far better what needs to be done . Salvation is for everyone. "Rebuke is more effective for a wise man than a hundred blows on a fool." Prov 17:10

Friday, 26 April 2013

The Double "F" by Susan L.

"If you can't forget, you haven't forgiven!" This particular teaching grieves me to no end. I may have written about it before but it bears repeating. Yes! We are told to forgive. Yes! We are to emulate our heavenly Father who forgets our sins the moment we repent and ask for His forgiveness. Thank You, Lord, for that gift. For little things, like when someone cuts us off in traffic, the forgive/forget can be as automatic as breathing. There is no personal attachment to that. Or maybe there is...we all have our triggers. I struggle with Post Traumatic Stress, a physical, mental illness birthed in trauma. Memories, charged with emotion can overpower me. These key events couldn't be forgotten because time and again the same core, hard and hurting memories explode, unwanted. However, choosing to forgive those who have hurt me in terrible ways has opened my eyes and my heart to healing and recovery. It isn't easy to sit in these memories but I need the Lord's insight and understanding about them. I ask Him outright, "What do You see?" Over time, He has replaced the harmful, worldly core beliefs birthed in these events with His truth. Most of these events have lost their power to disrupt my life. Although, a couple of weeks ago I did get sideswiped. That's okay. It means another layer of healing. "Where were You?" Initially, I asked that particular question out of anger. God has forgiven me for that. Now I want to find Him in every aspect of my life. Knowing where He was brings peace to otherwise traumatic events. It has taken time to get this far and mountains of paper, journals and tissues and tons of human support but now those same memories bring comfort. I was never alone and now, I don't want to forget. How can I allow the testimony of God's grace and awesomeness to remain untold? "Create in me a clean spirit, O God, anthd renew a steadfast spitit within me." Ps 51:10

Thursday, 25 April 2013

Pause For Thought by Susan L.

There was a major decision/realization made yesterday. I often need more than once to fully understand a lesson the Lord wants me to know. It's okay if I should miss a blog once a week. It's not a failure. It's not a "performance" problem. I don't need to feel guilty for not having lived up to some kind of imaginary obligation. If I'm pressed for time or too tired to write, that's okay. It doesn't have to be the same day every week, this day of rest. It can be a floater holiday, taken if needed. If I choose to write every day, that's okay too. In this case I get to make the rules. Or a lack of rules might be a better way to put it. Commitment was never meant to be a burden. Dedication was never meant to consume us. Thank You, Lord, for those last two sentences. They are freedom words. "You have dealt well with Your servant, O Lord, according to Your word. Teach me good judgement and knowledge." Ps 119:65

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Explorations by Susan L.

I heard of a technique in pen and ink drawing so I decided to give it a whirl. It has to be the least expensive art medium I've ever run across: a sharpened twig with Indian ink. I usually use a fine tipped black pen to get the clean, perfectly uniform lines I like in my drawing. The twig added a textural quality to those same lines. My twig was cut in a rather imperfect point so depending on how it was held, the line was thick or thin. Having to dip the twig repeatedly into the ink added its own wobbles to the lines as well. It's these imperfections that gave the images an organic quality which is absolutely lovely. It added a dimension of life and vibrancy that pulsed on the paper. Imagine! Imperfection and beauty going hand in hand. "The glory of Lebanon shall come to you, the cypress, the pine, and the box tree together, to beautify the place of My sanctuary." Is 60:13

Monday, 22 April 2013

Sweet Memories by Susan L.

I've spent most of today outside. The sun is finally shining. Nice after the freezing and unusual blizzard of two days ago. These first few forays into yard work are tough. Muscles ache, feet ache...the usual signs of a long and sedentary winter. I give thanks that I am able to do it. One of my greatest pleasures is weeding my veggie garden barefoot, the earth warm beneath my feet. It will be another six weeks before I can plant but it's nice to wander around. There's life stirring in the trees and perennials. The maple sap is running freely. I was watching it drip from newly broken branches far overhead. It reminded me of my son when he was young. He was trying to catch the drips with his tongue. He came in with sticky clothes, sticky hair and his ears full of sap. He had the biggest grin on his face. I had so much fun just watching him from the upstairs window. Gotta love those magic moments. "The trees of the Lord are full of sap, the cedars of Lebanon which He planted, where the birds make their nests." Ps 104:16

Sunday, 21 April 2013

Bountiful Gifts by Susan L.

Awareness.Adaptation. Belief. Community. Competence. Calm. Change. Correction. Compassion. Creativity. Deliverance. Determination. Dishes (that one's for me!). Dance. Expression. Encouragement. Evolution. Food. Forgiveness. Faith. Friendships. Frivolity. Gentleness. Gender. Growth. Giving. Humanity. Holy Spirit. Honour. Healing. Heart. Hope. Humility. Help. Instruction. Identity. Intimacy. Jesus. Joy. Knowledge. Life. Love. Laughter. Logic. Listening. Learning. Ministry. Music. Mercy. Name. Optimism. Openness. Organization. Peace. Praise. Patience. Passion. Prayer. Play. Protection. Refuge. Repentance. Redemption. Relationship. Resiliency. Receiving. Silence. Strength. Sensitivity. Satisfaction. Stories. Searching. Sin. Strangers. Truth. Tenderness. Tears. Thought. Trust. Trials. Time. Unity. Union. Uniqueness. Value. Victory. Wisdom. Worship. And the greatest gift is the connection to our heavenly Father made possible through the work our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ did on the cross. Just for us, you and I. One more thought. This list is truly the short one! "I know your works, tribulations, and poverty (but you are rich). " Rev 2:9

Saturday, 20 April 2013

Present Present's Presence by Susan L.

Yesterday's scripture hit home with me . To paraphrase, "God's gifts are irrevocable." It raised the need for some soul searching, forgiving and repentance on my part. I'm thinking that the gifts we are given are like our brains. We only ever use a fraction of the whole. There are countless reasons. The devil wouldn't want us to be the best we can be. Perhaps these inborn gifts weren't nurtured or encouraged. Or worse, they were criticized and minimized, stifling what could have been amazing. Perhaps we were in an environment that didn't allow us to discover these hidden treasures at all. Poverty, the fast pace of life may be just a couple of obstacles stopping us from reaching our full potential. A word of caution, I'm not talking about success as the world sees it. Honestly, if I hadn't had such a difficult struggle with depression and the effects of trauma over the last several years, I wouldn't have discovered my love of writing. I wouldn't have found the voice in art. Or even the gift of my humanity, bumps and all. Gifts. There's no ifs about it. Everything is one no matter how it's wrapped. We only need to explore to tap in to what is hidden behind the devil's rhetoric. "Nevertheless He did not leave Himself without witness, in that He did good, gave us rain from heaven and fruitful seasons, filling our hearts with food and gladness." Acts 14:17

Friday, 19 April 2013

More "i" Am by Susan L.

My Wednesday therapy session generated yet another breakthrough understanding in regards to something that took place over the weekend. At the home show on Sunday I had been sketching in pen and ink to while away the time and keep me grounded. (One of my coping tools.) Across the way was the local Arts Council booth where a watercolour artist was applying her skills to paper. I wandered over to chat with them and watch her paint. I decided to show them the little landscapes I'd drawn that afternoon. They were well recieved and the ladies encouraged me to get involved with the arts community. I thanked them and returned to the Krasman booth. I began to shake. Waves of guilt and doubt about this prideful behaviour nearly drowned me. For me to share my art with others outside my comfort zone was very unusual and way outside that comfort zone. Here's the crux of the matter which came to light on Wednesday but needed art therapy last night to cement this understanding in my heart: being proud is not the same thing as being prideful. Pride looks down on others. Proud is celebrating the gifts God gives to us and using our skills and talents to bless others. I think I can do that now with a confidence that is slowly blossoming. Thank You, Jesus. "For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable." Rom 11:29

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

A Taste of Eden by Susan L.

My friend showed up on Monday wanting to go for a walk so we headed into the park. It was early evening and to my delight the spring peepers were beginning to sing for the first time this year. It won't be long before this lovely frog chorus will be accompanied by the deep voices of the bull frogs. Ahhh, sounds of spring! It's a nice time of year to go for a walk. The mosquitos aren't out yet. There are footprints everywhere in the soft earth of the path. Not just human and dog but racoon, deer, mice, rabbit. There's a warm bank where turtles lay their eggs although the racoons seem to always find this tasty treat. There are beavers, too. They have cut down a lot of trees. Poplar, birch, and pussy willow appear to be their favorites. Some of them are quite a ways from the water which surprises me. They must be strong for their size to haul the branches so far. I'm glad they have the conservation area where they can do their thing without retaliation from angry home owners. It's great to actually see them once and a while. The nice thing too is there are no campers in the park yet. It is like a private garden where I can watch spring unfold.: fiddle heads, trilliums, violets and the greening of the trees. The promise of summer. "The Lord God planted a garden eastward in Eden, and there He put the man whom He had formed." Gen 2:8

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Small World by Susan L.

I made some phone calls yesterday to get quotes on taking down a huge and dangerous black willow in my front yard. The yellow pages had several tree companies listed so I randomly picked four. The first came out last night and as we were negotiating he said, "I know you." The discussion began. Turns out he's living on the farm where I toiled for so many years. He had met me briefly at a neighbours one time. I was impressed he remembered. I didn't. He complimented me on the farm's paint job because he liked the various faux finishes I had used. They hadn't changed a thing, liking my colour choices as well. This was the first time I had decorated without thinking about resale. I used the rich earth tones I love so much. No builder's beige for me! Memories bubbled up.. Some good, some not so good. One of the good things is I ended up not living there long enough when the renovations were completed to get tired of the colours. I carried them with me to my new home starting with my sunshine yellow kitchen. "When you have eaten and are full then you shall bless the Lord your God for the good land which He has given you." Deut 8:10

Monday, 15 April 2013

Wound Up by Susan L.

Had some trouble falling asleep last night even though I was very weary after the show. My mind was replaying some of the conversations that took place over the last couple of days. We met some wonderful people, had some laughs, heard some heart wrenching stories. I guess the weekend could be called a very human experience, rich in the variety that proves us unique in all ways. There were more than a few however who read our signs and quickly looked away or walked a bit faster past our booth. That's okay. Seeds were planted. That was the main reason we were there. I can't help but be an advocate because if we are reluctant to show our own faces in connection with mental health, nothing will change. If we don't get the message of recovery possibilities into society...how can I in all good conscience not hold out a hand to someone who may be struggling. For things to stay as they are simply isn't good enough. "And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him." Mat 15:31

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Onward and Upward by Susan L.

The first day of the Home Show was a success although the arena was cold for those of us not walking around in coats. Imagine, a cold hockey arena! What did I expect? We talked with a lot of people. Some who knew our name but didn't know who or what the Krasman Centre was all about. Now they do. There were others who were pleasantly surprised that such a place even existed.Success! There is a competition for best booth. It was extremely unnerving when the five judges came by with their clipboards, studied our setup and made little official check marks on their papers. Didn't that trigger some uncomfortable memories of psychiatrists I'd seen in the past. It didn't derail me though. Success! There was a vendor's dinner after the show closed for the day. I waivered between going/not going. I ended up checking it out and ended up leaving. The noise was too much after the long day. I needed some quiet because I wanted to be at my best for today. Practicing healthy self care. Success! All in all, a good day because in the grand scheme of things this is what it's all about: "To proclaim liberty to the captives and the opening of the prison to those who are bound." Is 61:1

Saturday, 13 April 2013

The Debut by Susan L.

I pray Lord, for open minds and open hearts over the next couple of days. Lord, let those who need hope speak with us without fear or shame. I pray that You would give us the words to speak. Help me, Lord, not be overwhelmed by the busyness.and noise of the Home Show. Thank You for bringing me to this place of missions. Let me be a living example of what recovery looks like. All the Glory goes to You. I couldn't have got here without Your awesome love. These things I pray in Jesus' name, amen. "Unless the Lord builds the house, they labour in vain who build it." Ps 127:1

Friday, 12 April 2013

A Bit of History by Susan L.

Tonight we set up for the Home Show this weekend. I'm so excited about it for many reasons. Mostly it's because this is a great opportunity to get our recovery message out there to people who may never have heard about it. This is a relatively new concept in mental health that has been growing rapidly since the 1980's. Budding psychiatrists, social workers, psychologists are given, at most, an hour in all their years of training to learn about strength based recovery possibilities. That's if it is even mentioned to them at all. It depends if their teachers or proffessors know about it. It also depends if they are willing to rock the boat by stepping outside the clinical/medical models of treatment that have been standard practice for centuries. All of the social service organizations look at problems not solutions or hidden opportunities. There is no mandate to empower people who are merely clients or patients. In fact, the medical system will often strike back in a harsh and punitive manner should a person living with mental health struggles decide to own their own lives. Many people have been and continue to be forcibly hospitalized because they questioned or refused the course of treatment prescribed by the "experts". When nearly half of us living with trauma related mental health struggles, this type of bully tactic treatment has to stop. There are better ways. Doctors and medications are simply one tool that can enable recovery. "Now a certain woman had a flow of blood for twelve years and had suffered many things from many physicians." Mk 5:25

Thursday, 11 April 2013

"Pathways to Recovery" by Susan L.

In one sentence Pathways to Recovery is a strength based program which opens the door to wellness and can unlock our hidden potential. I believe anyone can benefit, not just those of us who live with mental health challenges. The workbook itself, the "road map" is clear and concise. (Available at Amazon.com) It asks questions that make you think while building confidence and hope in a straight forward manner. It takes the 'T' out of 'can't'. It is a book that can be worked through individually although a group adds a richness and a diversity of approaches to the various subjects. And it is more fun to be with a group of like-minded people. I enjoyed the facilitator training and have finished these last three days feeling good about my own capabilities. It helped me understand that a facilitator is not a teacher in the traditional sense. We merely try our best to provide a safe space for everyone to grow and learn about what our own wellness might look like. Never in a million years did I imagine I'd be where I am today and even though I didn't sleep too well last night, it's nice to wake up with a smile on my face. "And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient." 1 Ti 2:24

Monday, 8 April 2013

A Break by Susan L.

I just want to let my readers know I'll be back on Thursday. God bless.

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Bald Is Beautiful by Susan L.

The turkey vultures have returned. There has been a pair which nest across the road at least as long as I've lived here. I don't know much about them, how long they live, whether or not they mate for life, what noises they make. They aren't the prettiest birds on the planet but when they fly, it's a sight to see. They surf the wind, swooping and spiralling among the thermals. Massive, barely moving wings sensitive to the unseen currents. Their tails make minute changes to make the best use of air flow. It's a subtle ballet of motion and awesome to watch. Cartoons often portray them as the bad guys. Rather unfairly I think but I suppose their dining habits turn us off. Too bad. I mean similarly feathered wild turkeys are central to a major North American holiday. It must be the chest puffing,tail fanning thing they do to woo the ladies. The epitamy of pride but nevertheless something wonderful to see. Redeeming qualities. I think the Lord in His generous way gave us all some didn't He? "So God created great sea creatures and every living thing that moves...and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good." Gen 1:21

Saturday, 6 April 2013

Restoration, Inc. by Susan L

I was in the local office supply store yesterday. To my delight they restocked the ink refills for my fountain pen. Today's blog is like being in touch with an old friend. The act of writing is once more enveloped in artistic pleasure. We've covered many pages, my pen and I. Thousands of words in prayer, in repentance and forgiveness as well as gratitude offerings have filled several spiral bound notebooks. It was this pen that began my recovery journey when I submitted both it and the page before me to God. I knew nothing of the terribly dark times that lay ahead but Jesus had met me in my own garden of Gethsemane. I chose to submit to whatever God's will was for my life. When I was hospitalized and feeling suicidal, they took my pen from me for a while. It broke my heart.The nurses were afraid that the steel point could be used as a weapon to hurt myself. Nothing was farther from the truth although my pen has been a mighty weapon. Eventually they returned it but only while I was in the common room. Things I was unable to vocally articulate poured out. Another layer of healing began. Thankfully, a change in medications got rid of the suicidal ideology. "Then He said to the woman, "Your faith has healed you. Go in peace."" Lk 7:50

Friday, 5 April 2013

Squeaky Wheels by Susan L.

At Wednesday's meeting our coffee break conversation revolved around the difficulties of being a peer support worker in a medical/clinical organization. And, yes, even those at the forefront of radical change are hampered by prejudice and language. Not swearing but labelling, derogatory comments, and low expectations aimed at the people utilizing their services. There are frequent, unacceptable tresspasses against basic human rights. My question is: how do we support the support workers? They/we are the vanguard of a movement which is geared up to change a system that is in contact with people who happen to have mental health challenges. How do we make sure their/our voice is heard above the medical rhetoric and diagnosis? How do we change centuries old language and understanding without judgement? Like us, clinicians, doctors, nurses, only know what they've been taught. As peer support workers in a fledgling movement we cannot afford to be silent in the face of discriminatiin and prejudice. We need to be the squeaky wheel because our silence is a tacit approval of the status quo. The status quo has to go. It simply isn't good enough. "The people of the land have used oppressions, committed robbery, and mistreated the poor and needy; and they wrongfully oppress the stranger." Ez 22:29

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Pathways Training by Susan L.

We got word yesterday that there were two cancellations for further training in the PREFER program (Peer Recovery Education for Employment and Resiliency). This group is one of the three sessions my friend and I have left in order to become certified peer support workers. This is where we begin to learn how to facilitate groups. In this case, Pathways to Recovery. I'm glad we got in although it's going to make next week rather hectic. Three days training, 9:30-5, followed by the Alliston Home Show on Friday to Sunday. Far more than I like to have on my plate at any one time. It is only one week and both experiences will be invaluable. My excitement about the show is building because it is such an amazing out reach opportunity. I just pray that the people who would benefit from what we have to offer will cross paths with us. I also pray that shame be silenced. I pray that hearts and minds will be opened and the truth about mental health challenges be accepted. In Jesus' name, Amen. "Let no one seek his own, but each one the oher's well being." 1 Cor 10:24

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Threads of Mirth by Susan L.

In a word, it's absurd, Laughing moments, helpless facial orifices running in a flood soaking fingers no longer able to hold What's left of a Royale three ply tissue. It happens but nothing particular comes to mind. Hysteric grab rib, tummy torture roaring, Run-to-the-bathroom-quick-fear-filled-I-won't-make-it! I did! Hilarious play with words, the puns that stun the logical and the stern. It happens, alright, but nothing exactly comes to mind. Man o man! You-should-have-been-there scenarios when nose blown Cheerios and milk christened the kitchen table, Silly nonsensical, giddy whimsical childish delight. Remember when? But nothing precisely comes to mind. Ah...the irreverant giggles. Worst possible moment explosions: body jiggles, everything wiggles in a silence that rocks the pew and the one or two on either side whose down the nose looking only makes it worse! That's happened more than once I'm afraid, but nothing specific comes to mind. The startled burst has to be the worst! Under table crawling more desirous than to be the only one whose amputated "Ha!" echoes round the room...the room...the room. Face flushing betrayal gives away the fact that it was you, uncontrolled. That's happened more than once, if I recall. Circumstance of mis-chance, convoluted happenstance, the jaw-dropped question, "What just happened?!" followed by an incredulous snort making its report, the starter's pistol for breath stealing gales just waiting to run. There was this time...I remember it well. I confess only I was laughing about boot sucking mud and stocking feet and a rather crazy cow. It's a long story from long ago but one that still makes me smile. Thank You Lord for the good times. "Is any one among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing psalms." Jas 5:13

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Beneath the Every Day by Susan L.

The word "Redemption" is rattling around my head this morning but I have no idea where this is going. Or, maybe I do after all. I'm thinking of my little house. It was a party house before I moved in and sadly in need of TLC. Redemption. I had the skills to do 99% of the work my self. Learned during the latter, unhappy years of my marriage. Redemption. The yard was just as neglected. Most of my landscaping has been done using found objects, other people's discards or half dead plants. Like the house, they only needed TLC to bring them back. Redemption and redemption. These are tangible symbols, small examples of what God does within us. He takes the abused, the neglected, the discards, the hidden talents. Under His Tender Loving Care (no abbreviations for Him) they bloom and grow. We often only see the finished product, the manicured pristine garden. The public face. I forget how much weeding, soil preparation and plant relocation has taken place. It takes time to find the right spot for a plant to thrive and blossom. Yah...Redemption is a beautiful word for a work in progress. "Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my strength and my Redeemer." Ps 19:14

Monday, 1 April 2013

He Is Risen! by Susan L.

Yesterday's blog was missed. Easter Sunday ended up being a day of "Selah" and reflection, church and a meal of leftovers shared with a friend. I had mine, she brought hers. We've done this many times. A spur-of-the-moment dinner together. It makes reheated food taste so much better. We season it with good conversation and I am always blessed by her presence, her insights and knowledge. She is an avid reader who brings a buffet of spiritual topics to the table. Meat and potatoes ideas that we chew on for a while. Ideas that even though our hearts and minds are filled, we are left hungry for more. More Jesus. More faith. More wisdom. More patience. Well, more of the good things our Lord and Saviour offers us. That list would fill, not just a few lines in a blog, but notebook after notebook after notebook...the Divine inheritance Jesus left for us on the cross. "If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you shall ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you." Jn 15:7