Thursday, March 1, 2012

In Honor of National Kidney Month; A Little Diddy about Kidneys!

Kidneys are very important
their quite unique you see,
not only do they clean your blood
they are what make your pee.

Located in the lower back
fist sized shaped like a bean,
they filter out impurities
like toxins not protein.

To be sure that yours are healthy
get a simple measure,
something called GFR for starters
plus glucose and blood pressure.

You may think me rather silly
but frankly I don't care,
I've had nausea and vomiting
even lost chunks of my hair.

To be so little they impact
many things in your life,
and these are some of the symptoms
that give you pain and strife.

So my goal is to bring attention
and I won't be remiss,
as it may save you from suffering
life on dialysis.

Thank the Lord there is that option
no complaints from me,
but prevention can keep your kidneys
working and healthy!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

My Legacy

Imagine that you are giving instructions that are to be shared at your own memorial service for some type of regular observance for people to engage in to remember you after your death. That's a mouthful, but it was a discussion question posed in my recent Sunday school lesson.

Some in the class said they had not thought of their memorial service. Perhaps it's due to the fact I was pretty sure mine would happen sooner than later that I often have thought of mine. We all want to be remembered don't we? I do! I'm also glad God had longer plans for my life than I did!

Why were we talking of instructions for a memorial service? Because the Lord talked about remembering Him when He discussed the Lord's Supper. See Matthew 26:26-29; Mark 14:22-25 and Luke 22:14-20.

The purpose of the Lord's supper is just that, to remember the Lord and what He did for us. I have to admit, it is hard to imagine all He endured just for me and for you. I am, however, so thankful He did. That in and of itself is enough...but He did more.

You see, I began dialysis when I was 8 years old. I don't remember a normal, if there ever was one. One day though, He will make me whole! That is my hope. That is His promise. I will get a brand-spanking new body. You may take yours for granted, but I've never had one that worked properly. I don't know what my "new" body will be like, but with Him I know it will be awesome!

My main message could be summed up in one word: HOPE. It is my word, my promise from the Lord, and my life verse. In fact, if you know me and you do not know my life verse I have failed you. It's Jeremiah 29:11. I know it by heart, I claim it in prayer and He has given it to me time and time again throughout my life.

The verse:
"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a future and a hope."

I want people to know I belonged to HIM - my Lord and Savior! I want them to know that through it all, He was and is my hope.

My hope is in the Lord. He came and lived a perfect life on this earth for me. He endured the torture of the cross and the devastating separation from His Father for me. He knew his purpose and He still came, for me.

So my memorial would have to have Jeremiah 29:11 front and center. References to hope should abound. Giving people the opportunity to know my Savior by preaching the word is of highest importance. Reminding my loved ones and friends they WILL see me again should happen as well.

I'd want you to be thankful that He gave me the years He did give me. I'd be touched if you remembered that through my life adversity, I smiled because He gave me something to smile about (even on the painful days) because He is my joy. You could go on a mission trip in my honor. And last but not least play the following song...

Sunday, February 19, 2012

The Gift of Presence

The numerous ways we have to connect in today's society make me sort of sad. I think it would be nice to go back in time when the means of communicating were face-to-face. I know, I know you are probably freaking out right now trying to picture a life where you can't instantly attach your ear to a cell phone and your daily stream of web information, chatting, tweeting, etc...comes screeching to a halt. Seriously though, how do you form relationships with people when you've lost the personal face-to-face where the rubber meets the road?

In today's world, you can conduct almost all of your business without ever leaving the comfort of your home. No contact with a human being is even necessary. You can do your banking, grocery shop, pay bills, buy clothes and household needs, read a book or watch a movie all through the internet. Some people even do their jobs from home.

With all this cool, high-tech means of doing business and communicating, I think we have paid a price. The gift of interacting with one another. The gift of a person's presence. Even when we are face-to-face, it is hurried and we don't give each other ample attention. We have so many ways to communicate today, but we don't really communicate well at all. We don't engage one another. We don't take time for each other.

Did you know that communication  is only 7% of what you say.  55% is body language and 38% is tone of voice, volume, etc...that's lost if it is not in person. Then there is the listening part. It's not effective if it's not heard. How many times in a conversation have you found your mind wandering off to another topic or thinking about what you are going to say next?

We have to be present with one another if we want to successfully share in each others lives. We are called to do so. The Bible tells us in 1 Thessalonians 5:11 to "encourage one another and build one another up". Romans 12:10 says to "love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor."

There are many references to loving one another and being there for one another as Galatians 6:2  tells us to "bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ". 1 Peter 4:9 says we are to "show hospitality to one another without grumbling" and Ephesians 4:1-3 says to "walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace". I think we have fallen short.

God shared with us. He shared His only Son so we could all share eternity with Him. You may know well the words in John 3:16, "for God so loved the world, that He sent His only son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life".  I am so glad He had a hand's on, personal approach with us.

Jesus walked this earth.. Jesus took time with people. He gave the gift of his presence to everyone He came in contact with. We have the perfect role model.

We need to be better at being present with one another, better at communicating, better at listening, and better at giving of ourselves.

I did a little experiment a while back to the "Hi, how are you greeting'" so many of us call out in passing. When someone asked "Hi how are you", I said I was having a hard day. The reply, "that's great, see you later". We don't listen to one another. I really was having a hard day that day. I know she did not mean what she said, but she said it. it was a hurried greeting in passing.. Not taking time and not being truly present came off as cold and uncaring.

I made a vow to myself that very moment I would not ask how someone was and walk away.. I will stop and listen. This means I may get off course for the day I had planned. It may take a little more time. It may get messy with problems someone is facing. It may be hard to see what they are going through. It could be painful and I may not have the right words, but I know one thing for sure. It will mean being present with them and I think that is what God intends. I think it means being obedient. I think it means being God's hands and feet to people.

I challenge you to make time for people!

I challenge you to give the gift of yourself!

God did!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Worries Grasp

We all know we aren't suppose to worry. The Bible is full of scripture telling us so. No one by worrying can "add a single hour to his span of life" it tells us in Matthew 6:27. Also, Luke 12:29 says "and do not seek what you are to eat and what you are to drink, nor be worried". Worry is not a good thing.

Worry is a useless drain of energy, energy that could be put to better use. I know I for one could put that energy toward praying about my worry instead of wrapping up in it's tight little grasp and suffocating in it. Why, oh why do I insist on suffering that way?

The best way to deal with worry is to pray it out to the Lord. I have found these verses in Philippians are excellent to pray back to the Lord when worry is knocking at the door of my heart, "be anxious for nothing, but in all things by prayer and supplication let your requests be made known to God. And the peace that passes all understanding, will guard your heart and mind in Christ Jesus.

I want that peace. I don't want worry.

I often borrow trouble anyway and commit to worrying myself to death in that suffocating grasp worry tends to have. Thing is, I can't change anything. I do, however, know someone who can! He will too if I will put my energy toward sharing my worry with Him so He can. I fail often and let the worry get the best of me. However, God is faithful! 1 Peter 5:7 tells us to "cast all your anxieties on him because he cares for you."

He cares. He can handle your worry. Quit letting it have a handle on you and hand it over to Him!