Some of you may be wondering where my posts have been. I’ve been experiencing technical problems in getting posts published. Whether this is due to my internet connection (I live in a somewhat rural area, with lots of hills and valleys, so topography could certainly play a part) or something else, I don’t know. But I run into problems when WP is saving the draft–then the connection seems to “go in and out”. I don’t know how else to explain it. I may be typing merrily along, thinking the whole draft is being saved, only to find out later that just half of the post has actually been saved, and I need to input the rest all over again. That, my friends, causes much frustration, because I do want to publish posts!! Sometimes it produces enough frustration that I give up for the evening. It is also frustrating because I don’t know what to do about the situation.
Be assured that I do want to continue with the blog. I enjoy writing pieces and reading your comments. As the ripples in my header picture illustrate, the blog is a means to connection, and that means a lot to me.
Turn on your television, and you will find a home improvement or makeover show. Renovation is the going thing. People are updating, creating, repairing, and they are telling everyone else about it.
Even our bluebirds got into the action this year. Our family put up a beautiful new birdhouse, but it evidently did not quite meet Mrs. Bluebird’s ideal. When we went out to look, we found that on the sections where they nested the entry holes had been painstakingly enlarged. They renovated!
I confess, however, that the renovation shows frustrate me. They spend way too much time on the details of demolition, foundation repair, and other behind the scenes work. I just want to see the before, the plan, and the finished product, with lots of attention to the finished project. When I stream a show, I often fast forward to the last few minutes…
For most of my life I’ve listened to voices in my head. The voices belong to authoritative people from my past. They say things like, “Why do you want to do that?” “Why bother with that?”
It’s likely the questions were designed to help me see I needed to put some more thought into what I was proposing. But the tone in the questions led me to believe the speaker didn’t take me seriously or worse, considered me stupid. I lacked the inner resolve to take the matter any further and didn’t know how to figure out solutions for the problems. I dropped the matter, even though I considered it important.
At this late stage I’m finally learning I have to take the position of: “This (whatever it is) is important to me. It is what I’m going to pay attention to, no matter what you say.” I’m learning no one gives that right to me; I have to take it, and be prepared to stick to it.
Writing is the activity which allowed me to realize this. I believe my desire to write is something God gave me. To other people He gave an enthusiasm for sculpting, or working on cars, or decorating, or any number of endeavors. To me He gave an enthusiasm for writing. It is that thing which makes me say, “This is important to me”.
I decided I can take that example of inner resolve and extend it to other areas. There are places where I need to speak up.
Musically, Easter brings to mind a favorite tune from back in 1988, Secret Ambition, by Michael W. Smith. The last line of the chorus summarizes the whole song:
🎶 Nobody knew His secret ambition was to give His life away.🎶
Michael W. Smith
I grew up Baptist, and the Passion of Christ (the events from the night before his crucifixion until his death on the cross) was not emphasized. Nevertheless, during the Easter season the Holy Spirit draws me to passages, like Isaiah chapter 53, where Jesus is described as our Suffering Servant.
The deer that frequent our yard and the stray cats have been acting a little strangely for the last couple of days, and I began to suspect that a large predator was in the vicinity, and this morning my new neighbor’s garbage looked as though it had exploded. (I forgot to tell her about the kitty litter on top of the garbage bag trick.) My suspicions were confirmed when I looked out my bedroom window and saw this young fellow. Weighing in at about 150 to 200 pounds, he isn’t the biggest bear I’ve seen in my yard, but he was certainly the least timid. He even stepped to the window to say hello, which made me a little nervous, I must confess. Especially when my cat Boots jumped up to the sill and started to paw at the window. I wish the photos…
I am pleased to introduce a guest post by brother Bruce Cooper, one the brethren filling in for me while I am busy preparing for a family wedding. Bruce’s writes regularly on his blog Reasoned Cases For Christ. Bruce majors in apologetics and defending the faith, with frequent Bible Studies, all of which I have found instructive and a blessing to me. I would recommend following Bruce’s blog to anyone who is seeking Biblical instruction. Here is Bruce’s post for you today.
“Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.”
In this post here, I mentioned my mother’s uncharacteristic behaviors last spring and summer.
At first I thought it might be due to side effects from her two COVID vaccines. Her doctor did too after an MRI of her brain and a carotid artery scan didn’t reveal any abnormalities. Then I thought it might be the beginnings of dementia. That provoked enough anxiety in me, as her only child, to make me wonder if I was going crazy.
As the summer wore on, new problems appeared. Her leg strength weakened, and she needed my help in going to and from the bathroom. Since my mother refused to see her PCP, but agreed to physical therapy, he sent her to physical therapy to build up leg strength. But the physical therapist noted that she seemed to be lacking energy and be run down.
In late August my mother was admitted to the hospital for bleeding. Following an endoscopy and colonoscopy she was diagnosed with a bleeding ulcer. With that diagnosis, the doctors prescribed medication to cut down on stomach acid, and an iron supplement to raise her hemoglobin to proper levels.
Since a leaking ulcer reduces blood flow to the brain, cognitive and other processes are affected, and since blood flow is reduced to other parts of the body, physical strength becomes limited.
I am glad and relieved to be able to write that my mother is doing better than she has in a long time. I post this to give a heads-up to anyone who thinks an older relative or friend is developing dementia. Before jumping to conclusions, have a medical doctor check the person out. There are other, treatable reasons for strange behaviors.
“The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; On those in the land of the shadow of death, a light has dawned.”
Dear Reader, may you experience and walk in the light and love of Jesus this Christmas season and in the new year to come. Sincerely, BethAlisan
My blogging friend GW at His Eye is on the Sparrow, a blog I highly recommend, introduced me to the work of singer/ songwriter Simon Khorolskiy. For this advent season, I share with you Khorolskiy’s rendition of one of my favorite Christmas carols. Merry Christmas!
I'm Joanna, a busy married mum of two beautiful boys aged four and three. I'm sharing my experiences as I navigate the wonderful world of motherhood! Mistakes, routines, mum / life hacks, cleaning, beauty...little bit of everything!