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Sunday, October 24, 2010

He is Enough

"Come, let us return to the LORD. He has torn us to pieces; now he will heal us. He has injured us; now he will bandage our wounds." Hosea 6:1

Sometimes life just hurts. Circumstances cause us to be torn and broken. We wake up smiling and go to sleep injured, hit so hard that we lose our breath. He always sees us. He never leaves us and He gets us through these moments. He allows the pain, the sorrow, the tearing and the injuries. He Himself does the tearing to pieces of our hearts, He Himself allows the injuries. Then He puts us back together and heals our wounds. Yet, there is always evidence of these hurtful moments by the scars that are left behind. Scars that we bare on our bodies as reminders of our trials of pain. Scars that tell our heroic stories of survival in the midst of severe adversity. Scars. We all have them. We all have at least one. Some are larger then others. But, a scar is a scar. We were torn apart, we bled real blood and our skin was broken in order to get this scar. It hurt. Sometimes so much so that we go into shock from the pain. Yes, He has injured us in some way or another. Yes, we may never understand why we have to suffer. But, really if you put it all into perspective, we have never and will never have to endure the pain that He endured on the cross. He died that we may live. "But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed." Isaiah 53:5
This is enough for me. Even when it hurts so bad I can't see past my tears I know He is enough. What He did for me was enough. Even though He tears me to pieces and it hurts so bad... He is enough.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

How we Live Our Lives

Isn't it amazing how time can just escape us? How before we know it a week, month or years have passed before we have given time to God. Time. How priceless it is. How important it is. It goes by, tick... tock. Then before we know it, it goes away. Just like that. Snap! A vapor. A mist. I did not realize how few our days were until my dad got sick with terminal cancer. I didn't realize that his last breath would escape him within a stilled second in time in the middle of the day. It made me realize something. What is it I am waiting for? Why am I even waiting at all? Why do I put off things for tomorrow? What if tomorrow never comes? What if today will be my last day here on earth?
Over the Summer I had a Breast Cancer scare. It reminded me of how vulnerable and fragile life is. How at any given moment it can change in an instant. As I was facing the possibility of facing a fight with cancer my very existence buckled. It was during this tumultuous time that I finally got it. It is not about how much time we have, it is about what we do with the time we are given that matters. How are we living our lives?
My dad was taken way too soon, but during the time he lived, he lived so well. He lived full. He dedicated his life to God. He made everyone feel excitement for living for God when he spoke each Sunday Morning at church. He fathered many. He uplifted everyone when he was present. He told me before he died that he wanted to help more people. He was just a great servant of God that helped people. There were over a thousand people that came to his funeral. All with a memory, a story, a thought about my dad and how he helped them.
Although my dad is gone and I miss him. I want to remember him and pay tribute to his legacy by helping others. Helping others the way my dad did. Not necessarily by words or deeds, but simply by how I live my life. To speak without words. To live for God and tell His story as I live my life day to day. That is why I write this blog. It is a reflection of my life for God as I live it. A peak into my heart. A heart that is fully, 100% dedicated to God. This is something I learned from dad. To live for Him every day and gaze upon His beauty, so that my life is beautiful to others and especially beautiful to God.

"One thing I ask of the LORD, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple."
Psalm 27:4

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Back in a Groove

So I have been back to work for over a month now. I will say I am finally back into a groove with my busy schedule again. I had 10 weeks off over the Summer. I had time to sit around and pray, read the bible, worship and blog. Now I have no time what so ever to do such things. I had to find time to fit these things into my day. It was essential to me to do so. Imperative to my well being. Every time I would find a moment, something would go wrong. Like my dog's disharmony for a while. I am happy to say they are fine now but there were a few weeks of fighting going on between them. It was horrible. It took time away from my day that I could have used doing all of the things I mentioned earlier. Then there was all of the back to school meetings and open houses I had to attend. These too took away time from my day to do the essential spiritual things my soul was craving. Now that all of the back to school nights are behind me I am finally on my way to being Back in a Groove. Back to my morning bible study and prayer time. Back to reading and writing in my journals and blogs. Finally. I am in a groove. I felt drained by all the extra curricular activities. I am so happy they are behind me and I can get back to the basics in my life.
I need my time with God one on one in the morning dancing, singing, praying and reading His word. I need to read all of my favorite blogs and write on my own blogs daily. It is like a therapy for my heart and mind. A release. It is also a time for me to be refueled when I am empty.
For as long as I can remember I have had a special time during the day set aside to just be with the Lord. Yes, things can get in the way of this time on occasion. But for the most part I try to fit in this time with God every day no matter what. Even if it is at midnight. I have to have it. I long for it as a deer pants for water. So much so that even when I found myself too busy I would pray, sing and talk to God in my mind. I had to have this moment with Him even if it was for a brief moment in the car as I drove to and from all of those open houses. I had to. My mind and heart insisted on it.
I think it is those mind moments with the Lord that got me through the last few hectic weeks of my life. So now that I am back in the groove and can easily find time again each morning to do all of my spiritual essentials, I am doing it with gusto. Singing loudly, dancing with great enthusiasm and just lapping up every drop of Him that I can. I do this because I don't know when the next hectic, can't find a minute, time in my life will come again. Enjoy Him today. He is so Amazing!!! Lap Him UP!! Every drop of Him.

"So what shall I do? I will pray with my spirit, but I will also pray with my mind; I will sing with my spirit, but I will also sing with my mind."
-1 Corinthians 14:15

Monday, October 11, 2010

Fullness of Life

"The thief's purpose is to kill, steal and destroy. My purpose is to give LIFE and FULLNESS." John 10:10

We all are familiar with this scripture. I could quote this one in my sleep. But today I saw the meaning of this scripture in a whole new way...
What is Fullness of life?

According to Webster's dictionary fullness and life are defined this way; Fullness: " The state of being filled; complete."
Life: "the period between life and death. The sum of activities."

So with these definitions in mind, how would you describe Fullness of life?

For me, my life up until this point had been a series of robberies. Much had been stolen from me. My very identity had been stripped away from me over the years. I had no idea who I was, nor did I feel that there was any hope for my future in finding who I was meant to be. Fullness! Ha! There could never be any fullness in my life. I was completely empty and void. Outside of my husband and children I had absolutely nothing. My life was dry, parched and barren. Then, over the summer something amazing happened to me. I began on a journey of finding my place in this world. Finding my identity. Finding my life. Thus, my life began to fill to overflowing. I became full... complete. My life as I knew it changed from barren to lush. The sum of all the activities of my life now had hope for a future. Because I learned this summer that Life comes from God and God alone. Not from my striving to be like Him or to know Him better. But, simply from being His and allowing Him the freedom to have His way with my life. By losing my life through surrendering it back to God I found my life and the fullness thereof. I found out what FULLNESS of LIFE really is. It is completeness in HIM for the sum of all of my days. Start to finish. It is knowing without doubt that He is in control and I can surrender all of my control to Him who will satisfy me all of my days. I am so thankful, so humbled and so grateful for His amazing grace in my life. In my FULLNESS of life.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

It's Been a While

Hello to everyone who faithfully reads my blog. I know it has been a while. I have been very busy living my life. My life that can be crazy and hectic sometimes. I have been faithfully spending time journaling in my hand written journal and doing my Thin Within Workbook study. I am just starting week 5 and I have been so blessed by this workbook series I cannot even begin to tell you. Today I recommitted myself, my heart and my mind to believing truth over lies. To knowing for sure that God is in fact that truth. The only truth in my life. He is there instantly when I cry out to Him for help. Without waiver He helps calm every storm in my life.
Thankfully, my life has been peaceful even though I am busier then ever right now. I am so thankful to God for that. That He has calmed the sea of my life. He really has. Yes, there are still problems. Every day I am faced with a challenge. But, boy His peace passes all understanding for everything I must face. I can face the storms life brings me, the tremendously high waves that wash over me sometimes, and the mountains I must climb every once in a while. I can face all of them because He quiets every storm, He calms the waves and He makes every mountain flat. His loves never fails. Ever! He comes to rescue us when we cry out to Him for help. This is a truth I know for sure and cling to every day of my busy life.

"O people of Zion, who live in Jerusalem, you will weep no more. How gracious he will be when you cry for help! As soon as he hears, he will answer you."
Isaiah 30:19

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Old Things New

I am amazed at how I can look a scripture a million times and even memorize it. Then one day, I wake up and that same old scripture becomes something BRAND NEW. During my dads illness and eventual passing we had a theme scripture that we meditated on throughout the entire event and then even after he passed we used this same scripture to comfort us day after day.

"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 hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

I have worn this piece of scripture as a badge for the last 13 years of my life. This scripture badge was worn to remind myself that no matter what happens in my life and in the lives of those around me that I love and care about; that God has a plan of hope for my future. So when we had to face illness, and the death of my dad, even though it hurt more deeply than anything else I had experienced, there was still a peace there. This peace was able to be present in my life because of the glint of hope for my future. This peace came because I wore this scripture as a badge of hope for my future. I pulled it out every time I started to feel sorry for myself for losing my dad. I held on to it tightly every time I was faced with turmoil in my life after he passed. I ran my hearts fingers over it every time I felt like I was in a place in my life that was dark, cold, lonely and hopeless. This scripture and I have been through many wars of life together and it has become my comrade in the heat of each war that we have faced together.

Today however, I have seen this same old comrade of a friend scripture in a new best friend way. Let me share my new friend with you.

"This is what the Lord says: “When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will come to you and fulfill my gracious promise to bring you back to this place. 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 hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.”" Jeremiah 29: 10-14

You see my old comrade introduced me to some new friends. He brought along other verses with him. Verses 10, 12, 13 and 14. Boy, do these new friends pack on a whole new meaning for me today. For a long time (13 years to be exact), I have been in a land far from home. A foreign country. A country of captivity, bondage, hurt and hopelessness. You see, even though I clung onto verse 11, I still felt hopeless in my life. Even though verse 11 was in the trenches with me... I was still in the trenches period! I was trapped in the trenches, or shall I say the ditch! The pit! The cave! It was a dark, gloomy and scary time for me. I knew my day would come that the war would end and I could come out of the trench, and go home. It took many yesterday's to get to today. Now, I can finally say those yesterday's are over and I am finally going home. The war has ceased and it is a brand new day. I am going back to the place I call home. Home to me is a place of safety and refuge. A place of hope and newness. I am getting there. My faithful friend is going with me along with my new friends, and God Himself is leading me. I am so thankful that God has taken something old that I have grown to love and lean on (a simple scripture), and turned it into something new. Isn't it just like Him to make all things new? Even His own words of truth. Rejoice today! Yesterday is gone but not forgotten. Today is a brand new day to wear a whole new badge. I will wear both badges with honor. With the hope that I do and will have a prosperous future ahead of me now that I am going home.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

God Lavisihes His Love on Us

Today I learned something new. Yes, I have always known that God is love. That God loves me. But today I learned something new about His love that I just was not seeing all of these years of loving and serving Him. For a very long time I thought that my family had a generational curse on it. That everyone died to early, sickness was rampant and just getting by financially was the norm. I never thought in a million years that God in His great love for me wanted to lavish me with His love and provision. But I was proved wrong today in scripture.

"You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, 6but showing love to a thousand [generations] of those who love me and keep my commandments." Exodus 20: 5-6

So I learned something today. I learned that God loves me and will bless my life for a thousand generations. The curse that I thought loomed over me was a lie. His truth set me free today to believe for blessing and the lavishness generosity of His love.

Be blessed today my friends even in the face of adversity, because His love outweighs it all.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Life Changes in an Instant

It is amazing how life can change in an instant. I came home today after a long day of work and BOOM my dogs started fighting again today. Out of no where. I was all alone taking them for a walk and they just began to attack each other. As I picked my smaller 15 pound dog up to protect from my 40 pound dog, I was bit bad. I know you are not suppose to get in the way of fighting dogs, but it was a mommy thing. I tried to separate them. I held my little dog, and led my bigger dog by the leash all of the way home. Once inside I immediately separated the dogs and nursed my wounds. Ouch did they hurt. One puncture wound was a bit deeper then the others and took a while for me to stop the bleeding. It was frightening. I have to start all over with the dogs again. I don't know what triggers them to fight. We were just on a walk. That is usually our happy time. They had not fought for a week. I am at a lose for words. Please pray for me. This is difficult for me. I am not sure what to do??? Anyone have any suggestions?

Monday, September 13, 2010

Something Old, Something New.

Today I had a good day. I did not have a great day, or a perfect day. But, I did have a good day. I went to work and did all that was required of me. I came home, walked the dogs, waited for the kids to come home and made them a treat when they did. I listened to them tell me about their days as they ate their treats and I realized something. My life is good. My life is really good. I don't know why I complain or get upset sometimes with my crazy, busy life? I can't imagine what I have to complain about? I have a good life. So today I will rejoice in the fact that I can recognize things are good. I will try to hold on to this lesson today and keep it safely tucked away in the pocket of my heart so that I can easily pull it out when I have a bad day. So that I can remember life is good. I am okay, and I have a lot to be thankful for today.

"For the Scriptures say, "If you want to enjoy life and see many happy days, keep your tongue from speaking evil and your lips from telling lies." 1 Peter 3:10

Sunday, September 12, 2010

In the Thick of It

Sometimes life is just hard to navigate through. I just started the workbook series of my Thin Within journey and already I have fallen. I ate all day yesterday out of 0-5. I ate all day period. I was stressing about a recent heated discussion I had gotten into with my husband. Without getting into detail about that heated discussion lets just say, it got very ugly! I ran to food for comfort, which surprised me. I thought I had gotten past all of that. But, to my surprise I had not. I ate, and ate, and ate some more! It was disgusting really. But, I learned a lot about myself. I have not arrived. I am not even close to arriving and God has a lot of work to do in me before I will ever arrive. I do not want to keep running to food when I get into the thick of it in my life. I want to run to God. Crawl if I have to. I want to sit at His feet and cry, scream and yell instead of run to food and stuff my sorry face. Isn't this what it is all about though? We run, we fall and then we get back up again. Hopefully in the process of it all we learn a new trick or two along the way. I know that sometimes when we stumble and fall we get hurt and scraped up a bit. We may even brake a few bones. But, I heard that when we brake our bones the bone actually gets stronger after it heals. So we only get stronger when life gets thick, we fall, get hurt, then get back up again. It is never to late to start over. So today I will wait for 0 to eat. I will start over. I will get back up today stronger, and I will start over. Thank God for His unconditional love and help. Thank you God for your newness every morning. You are my strength when I am weak.

"Even if he has a fall he will not be without help: for the hand of the Lord is supporting him." Psalm 37:24

Thursday, September 9, 2010

All Work No Play

Sometimes we just have to work. Work is a part of life. Every one's life. Nothing in this world is free. I wish money grew on trees and things were free, but money is not grown it is earned and the things that we need cost money! I wish I had more time to write on my blog and sit and read all of the blogs I loved and followed. But, lately I am lucky I have time to go to the bathroom. Today I have the day off so I can write. But, yesterday I was too busy working to write. That is just how it is. One of my husband's favorite sayings is; "It is what it is." Well, it is what it is and right now my life is all work and no play. I know in the past I have gotten stressed out from this and when I am stressed out I run to food. That however, is in the past. I no longer run to food when I am stressed. I have learned to run to God. I have learned that I will no longer be a victim of stress. I will no longer allow stress to distress me. I will instead run in the victory that God has given me. I will remember where I came from. My wounds of the past are in the past. But, the scar of the wound is a reminder for me to remember that God has protected me in the fierce battles of the past wars I have fought in. I am not maimed by those scars anymore. I am no longer fixated on those scars, and I will no longer allow those scars to make me feel disfigured. I have been set free. I have been made new. Yes, the scars are still there. They are still visible, and I can tell you what each scar represents. I can tell you how each scar was inflicted upon me, how much it hurt when it happened and how long it took to recover from the wound. Now, I can also tell you that it does get better. You do heal. You do recover. You do have victory in the end. Yes the battle may be fierce. Yes the battle may be long. Yes the work may be hard. Yes sometimes there is no play time. But all wars end. All work ends. There is a time in every day that you get to go home. There is a time where the work of our hands is estableshed, blessed and we are rewarded for our hard work. Until then; work, fight, and run to the battle. It will only make you stronger. NO RETREAT!

"From now on, don't let anyone trouble me with these things. For I bear on my body the scars that show I belong to Jesus." Galatians 6:17

"May the favor of the Lord our God rest upon us; establish the work of our hands for us--yes, establish the work of our hands." Psalm 90:17

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Back to Work I Go

My life of leisure is over. Summer was a wonderful time for me. A time of renewal and freedom. Literally! Now reality has sunk in. I am back at work. Back to the grind. I am okay with that. For the first time in like forever I am okay with working again. I was always resentful towards my husband for not making enough money to support us, and leaving me no option but to have a full time job to help with financial obligations. When we were first married it was a joy to work. I was full time teacher in a Christian School. I was able to teach ABC's and Jesus. It was wonderful. When I became pregnant for my first son Christian 16 years ago, I decided I couldn't take leaving him, so I resigned from my teaching position. But, my husband said I needed to continue to make money, so I began a babysitting business in our beautiful home. I watched 2 other kids along with my son. It was a nice time. But, very hectic and busy. I can remember the parents of the two boys I babysat getting upset with me if I had to take a day off or schedule vacations. I felt trapped in my own home sometimes. Then I had a second son and well, things just got really hard. But, I had no choice but to go thorough the storm of babysitting and taking care of my new baby. We needed the money. During these years I began to get more and more resentful towards my husband. I didn't even know that I was feeling this way. It just kinda happened. Little by little the feelings of resentfulness festered into feelings of hate. I hated my husband for making me work when all I really wanted was to be a stay at home mom with my own 2 kids and no other kids in sight. The joy of being a teacher left me completely and I was just a baby sitter now. Not a really happy one, but one who just went through the motions of doing the job right. I was a good babysitter don't get me wrong. I went above and beyond most days, because I do love kids. But in my heart I was just not really happy with my life. I had this burning inside me that I was made for more than what I was doing. My poor husband was the target of my frustration of not living my dream life. I didn't do it deliberately, or intentional, but I did shut him out of my heart for a very long time. I wrote him off as being someone who could never fulfill my hearts desire. I learned something this summer. I learned through Thin Within that no one can fulfill our hearts desire ever! Only God can fill the God shaped hole that we try to fill with other people or things. It's like putting a round peg in a square hole when we try to put people and our jobs in place of what only God can fill. I learned that life can be difficult and hard sometimes. There are seasons in our lives when we feel like we are in a dark storm, and other season's in our lives when the storm finally lifts and we find a colorful rainbow after the storm. That is where I am now. I have released the resentfulness I had for my husband all of those years for making me work when I didn't want to, and I have felt so free in doing so. I can finally look out over my life and see the rainbow instead of the clouds. That is why it is okay that I am back at work. I am fine with working to help meet the needs of my family now. Because I am being fulfilled by God in my heart and I am not looking for my husband to fill something he was not meant to fill. I am looking to the one who is, can and was meant to fill me. Jesus! My Savior, friend and the one who brings rainbows after a storm.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

The Day After your Birthday

OK so today is the day after my Birthday. I did not wake up to a bunch of singing family members or presents today, like I did yesterday. Today I woke up to a busy schedule, 3 loads of laundry, barking dogs wanting to be walked and 3 grumpy men (my 2 sons and husband). Welcome to the day after my birthday. The day where I started back at work. Sat in a uncomfortable chair for 3 hours during a welcome back to school workshop. Shuffled the kids and dog around all day so that I could sit in that uncomfortable chair at the welcome back meeting. And then, rushed to get home to finish up the laundry I started at 5 am. Ugh! My life can be hectic. Especially now that I am back to work. But, I can honestly say that I am thankful to God for the hectic life that He has blessed me with. There are some people who are not returning to work this year because of all the budget cuts in New York State to School districts. Thank God, I got to back to work today. There are some people who have been out of work for several months and can no longer receive unemployment. I am thankful today that I have a job and can pay my bills. Even though I am only a 10 month a year employee and have to budget over the summer months when I do not get paid, I still have 10 months of a steady income. I am so grateful to God for that. Yes, my life can be a little hectic, but I have peace even when things get a little crazy. I have joy even though I do have everything I want due to being on a budget. Because I know that with God I have everything I need. He fills me completely, till I overflow and He is more than enough for me. So yes, I am back to my everyday humdrum life that sometimes can be a grind. But, I wouldn't trade my life for anything. I am so thankful that God gave me all that I have. The cup I once saw as empty, I now see as overflowing. All because of His great love and amazing grace.

"...and the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus." I Timothy 1:14

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

My Birthday

Today is my 42nd Birthday. I woke up to a beautiful sunny morning... thankful. I was thankful for all that God has brought me through these past few weeks. I was thankful for showing me who He is again in my life. I was thankful for hearing His voice speak to my heart again. I was thankful for old and new friends, my family and my dogs. I was thankful for health and happiness. Happiness. That is something that had become so foreign to me over the past 10 years. I had forgotten what joy and happiness was. I had tasted so much pain and bitterness for so long the sweet taste of joy and happiness was alien to me. But, now that is all that I taste. It is sweet like honey when joy enters your life. That is the only way I can describe having a personal relationship with God is. Sweet like honey! I would have never thought I would be here at this moment writing about joy. A year ago from today I was crying by myself in my room over my horrible life. I was so lonely and unhappy. What a difference a year makes. Well really, what a difference these last 4 months have made. Today on my birthday I received a package. It was the Thin Within Workbook series. I don't even know why I received this package. I lost every contest I entered to win one, but today on my birthday I received one. I think I have an idea who sent it to me, and to her I can only say it was the best Birthday present I have ever gotten. Thank you. You have blessed me so much and I haven't even formally met you. I prayed hard that I would be able to afford this workbook when I returned to work next week but truth is, it would have taken me a while to have had the extra money to get this workbook. I put my needs last on the list of things that need to be bought. My kids are always first and well, there are sneakers, school supplies and clothes that need to be bought for back to school. That is what I planned to use my Birthday money on as well as my first couple of paychecks. Then I would save up to buy that workbook. Now I don't have to worry. Thank you, you know who, for this workbook. I am not sure what made you do this wonderful thing for me for the second time, but I am forever grateful and God is truly doing a great work in me through it all. Thank you my friend. I wish I could hug you!!!!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Good News!

I just got home from vacation and I am so excited to post to you all. My breast biopsy results were negative. I was so happy to hear from my doctor while on vacation. I had a wonderful vacation and will write more about it to you tomorrow. For now I will rejoice and be glad in the good news.

Friday, August 20, 2010


I leave for vacation tonight. I have been busy all morning packing and doing all the million things that a woman needs to do to prepare their entire family for a week vacation. I am going to leave tonight knowing that God has things under control. I am going to step out in faith, walk out on the water of the unknown and believe that he will hold me up. When the wind starts to blow I will look deep into His eyes and stay the course. I will not let the wind of my current situation of possibly having breast cancer get in the way. If I see it, if I hear it, I will keep walking forward to Him who stands in front of me. Him who is always walking before me, preparing a way for me. Preparing a safe place for me to go. The one who will get me through the fire. I trust Him today. I will know for sure by Monday or Tuesday. I gave Image Care my cell number, and the Doctor has agreed to give me the results over the phone. She was very understanding, that I would be away and could not schedule a time to go in for the results and did not want to wait until I got back from vacation to get the results. She just said she would call me herself and give me my results by Monday or Tuesday morning. Until then I will rest in Him, knowing He has my best interest at heart. He will not let me sink. He will hold me up, carry me if He has to, this I know for sure. I will not have access to a computer. I am leaving my laptop home while I am away. I want to focus on my family and be in every moment of my vacation this week. I will be back on the 29th and I will gladly post my results to you all then. I leave you with this.

"These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold--though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world." 1 Peter 1:7

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Celebrate Health

Sometimes in life God throws us a curve ball. I was thrown one today when I returned back to the Image center to go through some more mammogram testing. As I was being squeezed and pancaked by an obnoxious machine , I was crying out to God; "Please don't let there be anything wrong with me." They took several very uncomfortable images of my right breast and I had to hold my breath through each one. The tests hurt and I felt like I was suffocating. It was horrible to say the least. I went from room to room and tech to tech. After they took images I was moved to the ultrasound room, where yet another tech took several pictures with the sonogram. Then to top it off, I had a biopsy. I had no idea Image Care even did biopsies. But, apparently they do because I had one today. I was numbed up with lanacane (I think I spelled it right, it is similar to Novocaine like dentists use), and then pierced with a needle to scrape away tissue to see if I had cancer tissue. I was beside myself through it all. Crying out to God inside my head and heart; "Why?" Then a doozie... The main Doctor of the entire Breast Center at Image Care came in to speak to me. She explained what all the test results were. Showed me all of the images that were taken and the area in question that was biopsied. She stressed how she was almost certain that everything would be okay and that they were just making sure that everything would be okay by doing the biopsy. I have never been more scared in all my life. Except of course when I found out that my daddy had late stage 3 prostrate cancer. I couldn't help but turn my attention to my father today. How devastated he must have felt the day he was all alone like I was today and going through his biopsy. I began thinking of the millions of people who every day face biopsies and get positive results that they have cancer. Cancer. I have grown to immensely dislike that word. It is a notorious serial killer that comes upon us suddenly and violently assaulting innocent lives. I was screened today for the possibility that I may have been a victim of cancer's ugly crime. I will not let it kill me spiritually though. I will celebrate my health today. I will celebrate that I am living and breathing. I will celebrate that I can hug my kids today and kiss my husband good night tonight. I will celebrate that I leave for vacation tomorrow and that I will enjoy every last moment of it. I will not let the thought of cancer impose upon my life. If I have to face it's ugly face I will. I can. Because I know something that cancer doesn't. I know that God is in control. He has a plan and a future for me. He has given me a hope for that future. I can do all things through Him who strengthens me. I can even fight cancer if it is His will for me to do so. So my friends celebrate your health while you have it because you never know when your health will be taken from you. Pray for those who have had their health taken from them. They are the bravest people on our planet and deserve to be prayed for.

"Beloved, I pray that in all respects you may prosper and be in good health, just as your soul prospers." 3 John 1:2

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Freedom Sings

So yesterday I dealt with a serious depression issue. But today is a new morning. A morning which brings a new song to my heart. I reread a poem that I wrote shortly after my dad passed away. I was writing out my feelings of the deepest grief and pain I had ever encountered. I would like to share that with you today.

By Angelina Brignola written January 2004

Can you still stand when you are bent over with burden?

Can you get up even if you have fallen, because the ground all around you is violently shaking?

When the voice of confusion is screaming in your ear, can you still hear His Still Small Voice whispering ever so gently?

When you fall and have no strength left to stand back up, will you trust that His hand will not only lift you up but also allow you to soar on wings like an eagle?

When the distant, cold world keeps shouting NO, will you hear Him who stands right beside you saying YES!?

When you have been stripped naked and you stand bare before Him what will His eyes really see?

When you have been pressed in on every side, what will come out from inside of you?

When the earth is dry and bears no fruit, are your roots deep enough to tap into the stream of living water that knows no end?

Although the trees are barren all around you, is your tree still bearing His fruit?

When the circumstances of life have rendered you helpless, will you have faith and trust that He will see you through?

When the cords of death have entangled you and you feel the bitter sting, what kind of song will you then sing?

Do you hear the drumbeat of His consistent, ever present, ever lasting, unconditional love beat with perfect rhythm? Can you hear His song when you have stopped singing?

It is a song of joy in the midst of your deepest grief and pain.
It is a song of strength when you are in your weakest hour.
It is a song of long suffering and peace when affliction assaults you and confusion consumes you.

His song of love wraps it’s arms around you and covers you in the storm.
His song is everlasting, timeless, limitless, priceless and endless.
His song can be heard by anyone who opens their ears to listen.
His song is unlike any you have ever heard before.
He sings it right now, this very moment, exclusively to all.

You can be pressed down and shaken to the very core but when you hear His song of love you will be running over.

Although the sun does not shine today and you are crying alone in the midst of the darkest hour you have ever known tonight. Hold on, be strong and arise from the ashes. Because the light of His amazing love and grace will shine brighter than the noon day as His Joy will come quickly to greet you in the morning.

I hope that this poem brings you some strength today in whatever weakness you may feel. It always helps me. Even when I get tempted with food and my weight. I apply it to whatever situation is getting me down. God bless you today

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


Okay, so yesterday I dealt with depression all day. I was just down. Really down. Normally when I get depressed I run full speed to the kitchen. But, I would not do that yesterday. I wanted to find out where this was all coming from. I wanted to go to the bottom of the pain and resolve it. No matter how much it hurt, I was determined to do this yesterday. In my journey to discover where this depression stemmed from I learned something about myself and about God. I learned that I am not alone. I am not invisible and I am seen and known by a God who loves me unconditionally. So, what was the cause of my depression? I was hesitant to tell anyone because I felt so childish at first, but I must release this because I feel so much lighter today from the disclosure of it. There was a drawing for a TW workbook done on Sunday. I was entered into it along with 2 others. I was praying I would win it because Lord knows I am on a strict budget and I can't afford a lot of extras right now. But, I did not win the drawing. Lindsay did. I am so happy for Lindsay but I was so disappointed I did not win. I brushed off the feelings but for some reason my disappointment turned into depression within a 24 hour period. I was so depressed yesterday, I went up to my room at 6:30 and stayed there isolated until I worked through what I was feeling. Just before that I gobbled down a sloppy Joe and some salsa and chips. I was only at 2 at the time and I ate until 9. Disgusted with myself I retreated to my room. Depression hurts. I felt numb from the pain. Like a zombie. I just wanted to sleep. Why was I so upset about not getting picked for the drawing? I am not a selfish person. I really was glad for Lindsay that she won, but I felt so invisible. Like I didn't mean anything to anyone. But, that is such a lie. I cried out to God to show me where this was all coming from. I know it wasn't from not winning a drawing, it was so much deeper then that. I thought back to how my whole life I have never felt good enough. Never felt important enough. Never felt significant. I was the youngest of 5 children. You would think I would be the spoiled baby in the family. At times I was, but to be honest, I do not remember anything before I was 12. Why is that part of my life a blank? I just remember my whole life trying to fit into a world that I felt separated from. I was picked over in gym class, ignored by the smart kids and left out by the really popular kids. I learned to be a lone ranger. Never getting too close to anyone, because every time I did get close to someone they found something wrong with me and passed me by for someone else. I hated, loathed, despised myself. That is the feelings that began to stir up because I lost a drawing. Deep seeded self hate issues. I cried out to God last night, well really at 2 am this morning because I couldn't sleep. I asked God, what is up with me God? What is wrong with me? Why am I so damaged, so bruised, so full of hate for myself? Why can't I remember anything before the age of 12? What happened to me? God did not answer my question.... there was silence. I felt invisible again. Invisible to a God that sees everything. Why didn't He answer me? Truth is He wanted me to go all the way through the tunnel of my self hatred. Even though it was dark, cold, lonely and I felt invisible. He wanted me to get through to the other side of it. All the while I felt alone and alienated from Him, He was actually carrying me through. Holding me close and carrying me. He lead me to this scripture;

"Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the LORD your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:6

He goes with me through the hardest places of my life. He holds me and never leaves me. He will get me through to the other side of things. Sometimes I get depressed because I am afraid of looking back to find out what is making me depressed. It is like a big mean enemy ready to attack and I feel overpowered by it. But, God assures us He will never leave or forsake us, He will get us through. Our enemies will be a footstool.(Psalm 101:1). Even the enemy of hating ourselves and depression. I know this is a feeling and emotion I will have to revisit. My battle with my self hatred is not over, but there is a huge crack in it's power over me now. I learned all this all because I lost a drawing. So, I am thankful for losing now and Lindsay WHOO HOO to you for winning. Thank you Jesus!

Monday, August 16, 2010

The Names of Jesus

Just reminding myself who He is today. When I feel a little down this helps. He is a my EVERYTHING!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Letting Go

Yesterday morning we had our Thin Within Chat. The topic was about forgiveness. A subject I have been on for the past couple of weeks. A subject that is something I think needs to be worked on our entire lifetime. Forgiveness. Someone brought up that they would eat every time their husband left on a business trip. I could seriously relate to this. When I was first married my husband was a Regional Manager for a Kitchen Supply Company and he traveled weekly to various locations. He was gone at least one or two nights every week. I was stuck home alone with 2 young children. I was also babysitting at the time to make extra money. It was hard enough raising my own two little ones then, to add 2 other toddlers to the mix. I have to say this was an adventurous time in my life. I was exhausted all of the time. I ate non stop. My husband was off on his business trips in nice hotels and getting to eat out. He didn't have to cook or clean and he got to sleep uninterrupted through the night. While I on the other hand was home cooking, cleaning, taking care of the dog, the kids and doing it solo. I became resentful towards my husband and towards my kids. I forgot how bitter and miserable I was until someone brought this topic up in our chat yesterday morning. All day yesterday I forgave my husband for having a job that kept him from me when I needed a little help. I forgave my kids for being so needy, (I mean really, can you believe kids are needy? ) and making me feel so overwhelmed. I let it all go. I felt a huge weight lifted. For the first time in a long time I felt closure. I know this sound trivial, but it was important for me to do this. Even though I was not feeling this way at all anymore I still had to do this. Even though my husband is home ALL OF THE TIME now. I still had to do this. Even though my kids hardly ever need me anymore I still had to do this. I felt such a new found joy for my family. Such a new found happiness and peacefulness. I am so thankful for what Thin Within is doing in my life. I am so thankful that God is teaching me to let go. Plus I lost 2 more pounds this week. My scale works up here. I have 18 to go. I am more then half way there and such a better person for it. Thank you God! Thank you all the ladies in our chat yesterday (especially Heidi).

"Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before..." Philippians 3:13

Saturday, August 14, 2010

The Rock of my Salvation

I was so overwhelmed the last couple of days about my Mammogram report. Two days ago I decided to call my Doctor to find out if she could shed some light on the report for me. I left a message with her answering service and the next morning (Yesterday) my Doctor finally called me back. She read the radiology report to me over the phone. A density was found in my upper right breast. There were no signs of malignancies, suspicious spots or clusters. She used several large medical words I did not understand nor do I remember. But, the bottom line was this. It did not look like cancer. I asked her what density meant. She explained that in a lot of cases when your breast is positioned in a weird way during the test, it can look dense. In most cases density is just from the position of your breast at the time of the test so I do not have anything serious to worry about. They just have to by law make sure that your breast is okay for sure, by getting a clearer picture of it. I was so relieved. I rejoiced all day yesterday. Now today, as I reflect back over the sequence of events I can only come to one conclusion. Life is short and comes with unexpected twists and turns. It is important to have a good foundation in our lives so that when those twists and turns do come and you get blindsided by them you will not crumble. Be careful where you build your life house.

"He is like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built." Luke 6:48

Even though I was shaken by the storm I knew I had to press into Him in this storm I may have had to face. I was very scared. I was shaken, but I did not crumble. I felt like I was aboout to but, I didn't. This whole experience has just given me more resolve than ever to press on in my journey to lose weight. To reach my 40 pound goal. No matter what lie comes at me. I know where my house is built now. On Him my Rock.

"He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he." Deuteronomy 32:4

He is the rock of my salvation. The one I am built upon. So that when the storms of life enrage around me, and the seas begin to toss high upon the shores in my life. I can rest and know without a doubt He will protect me and keep me standing. I can't wait to see how much more He shows me on my adventure to lose weight.

Friday, August 13, 2010

God is my Healer +Inspirational+

I do not have words to write today. Only this song to sing with you today. He is my healer! The one who holds me in His hands, directs my every step and brings me forward. I do not know what the outcome of my breast exam will bring on Thursday the 19th. But nothing is impossible for Him. Stand with me in prayer as I trust God to bring me through this storm. Thank you for all your prayers. Sing this song as a prayer with me today. There is strength in numbers.

Thursday, August 12, 2010


So yesterday, I was feeling more free then I have in years. Free because I was letting go of so many of the things that so easily entangled me. Free because I was forgiving and loosening the chains that were so heavy around me. I felt like I had just been let out of a dark, dreary prison cell with no window. I was just released from that cell and let out into a beautiful Summer Garden, filled with the most fragrant, colorful flowers and humming birds. Then BOOM! Out of nowhere I get a phone call. It is the Image Center where I had my annual mammogram on Monday. They called to tell me they need me to come in for further tests because they had saw something on my mammogram that they were concerned about. In a dazed confusion I made my appointment for next Thursday, August 19th at 11:00. I hung up the phone and felt numb. I felt scared, confused, deflated and numb. Like the air of my lungs was punched out from me. Like my new found Summer garden had just turned into a tornado. The peace before the storm they call it. Well, not just a storm a tornado or earth quake was more like how I am feeling right now. I went online several times yesterday and looked up breast cancer. I found courageous stories, sad stories, stories of hope and stories of horrible tragedy. But, no comfort. I was even late for my Thin Within Chat last night because I got so caught up with looking at Breast Cancer on the inter net. I don't even like to think about it but it is possible. Everyone of my family members told me not to worry until I know for sure why they called me back for more tests. But, I am worried. I saw my dad get taken away from me at age 66 from Prostrate Cancer 6 years ago. Cancer is a horrific disease. I saw someone in my life waste away from it before my very eyes. Here one minute, gone the next and he did not want to go yet. So here I am in a new freedom and now this. There has to be a reason? Food is the last thing on my mind. In fact I have to force myself to eat today if my stomach growls, because I am not even interested in food at all. So yes, this blog is about my weight lose journey. But today this blog is about me. My life. My story. I do not want to die. I am not sure if that is even a possibility, but just the thought that something may be wrong with me forces me to examine the subject. I am not ready to leave my family. My mom, sisters and brothers, husband and children and my baby dogs. I do not want to leave yet. But, what if God has written the last chapter of my life? What if it is time to live my last chapter? Would I be as courageous as my dad and accept the fatal blow of cancer? Would I be able to drink from the bitter cup of death? He says that He does not give us anything that we can't handle. I pray I am not strong enough to handle this so that He does not give it to me. I don't want it. I want to live longer. I want to see my kids grow up, get married and start families of their own. I want to live to see my grand kids get married and have kids. We all want a long life. We all want the good things in life. But, sometimes we have to drink from the bitter cup. Walk in the shadows. Crawl among the ashes. It is just the way things are sometimes. He is Sovereign. He has a plan. He has a start and a finish for all of us. Please pray for me today. I need your prayers. I am scared. But, I also trust in my Sovereign King who holds my future in His loving hands. God blessing to you all today. Kiss your kids and loved ones and hold them close today. Life is short.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


I saw this video today and it made me realize how important it is to forgive. While I am simmering in chapter 20 of my Thin Within Book about forgiveness. I felt this video was vital to my letting go process of some of the deeper things I need to let go of and to forgive. This video brought cleansing tears of healing to my soul and heart. I hope it does the same for you. We all have someone or something to forgive in our lives. Big or small. Forgive. Let it go and once you do your future will look so much more brighter and hopeful.

"Make allowances for each other's faults, forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others." Colossi ans 3:13

So what does this have to do with losing weight? Well forgiveness frees us. It sets us free from a prison of bitterness and hopelessness. In this freedom we are able to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that everything is going to be okay. We are not wounded from the offences of others. Therefore we can move forward freely without the weight of unforgiveness. For me I would run to food when I was upset about what someone else did to me. Unforgiveness would fester and I would eat even more. But, by releasing this unforgiveness I don't even give food a second thought. It is an amazing freedom. I hope you come to experience it.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

What a Difference A Year Makes

This picture represents Liposuction instruments used by Doctors. OUCH!

At this time last year I had considered meeting with a plastic surgeon to go over some plastic surgery options such as liposuction and a tummy tuck. I had done some research on these topics on the inter net and was weighing out the options. I am so thankful to God that I was not in the financial place to afford these procedures last summer because I would have never had the opportunity to experience my Thin Within adventure this summer. I would have never known if I had taken the easy way out (Plastic Surgery), how rewarding it is to do things God's way (the not so easy way out). Sometimes it is easier as people to just seek out the created things such as Plastic Surgery instead of the Creator Himself. God. It is easier to work 3 jobs and save the money then, to spend not a dime and receive so much more then what Plastic Surgery could give me. You see by taking the not so easy road, I really chose the easier option. God's way is the best way for me. It is the easiest way even though it caused me to let go of my selfish ambitions and run after His plan instead. It would have been a lot easier and a lot quicker for me to get Plastic Surgery. I would have had the instant results I was looking for. But at what risk? I have known people who have had surgeries and have had to get them redone for various reasons. I have known people who have had liposuction and have gained all the weight back. I have heard that people have even lost their lives during such procedures. Liposuction is not the answer. A tummy tuck is not the answer. God is! At least He is for me. You see the way I look at it is like this: If I had Plastic Surgery it would have never caused me to look at the very reason that I ran to food for comfort. Surgery would not have removed the greed and the gluttony that I had in my heart for food. It also would have never caused me to dig deep within and find out why I was running to food in the first place. Therefore, I probably would have gained all of the weight back after going bankrupt to have my instant results. On top of that, I probably would have gained even more weight then I had on me before I had the surgeries. That is what statistics tell me anyways. So why was I so obsessed with surgery last Summer after knowing these statistics? Well, simply because it would have given me the instant slimming results I so desperately wanted. I would have had the desired body I wanted without exercising and making food behave. I was so sick of counting calories and eating tasteless meals to make my weight go down. I wanted the best of both worlds; the body I wanted and the food I wanted. Thus, Plastic Surgery was the answer. Or so I thought. God had a different plan in mind for me. A plan of total surrender to a master surgeon. Yes, I did have surgery. Heart surgery that is. God used His skilled surgeon hands to cut out all the weights in my heart, all the things that pulled me towards food. The weight came pouring off. This kind of surgery, the kind that God does lasts forever. There is no fear that I will gain the weight back if I continually allow myself to go under his surgeons knife. The best part of it all is that it is free. I just have to surrender. Fully surrender. Through the surrendering there is transformation. My size 14 shrunk down to a size 6. I went down 4 sizes in 4 months. Yes liposuction and a tummy tuck could have given me results like this too, but would the results have lasted? I think not. I still would have run to food for comfort and eventually I would have put the weight back on and probably have felt even more hopeless then ever. Thank God He has called me by name and I heard Him. Oh! By the way, I can eat whatever I want and still lose the weight His way. No calorie counting or tasteless foods required. My Thin Within Adventure has brought me a freedom that is unbelievable, unimaginable and quite remarkable. Because He is UNBELIEVABLE, UNIMAGINABLE, REMARKABLE, WONDERFUL, TO MARVELOUS FOR WORDS!

"O LORD, I will honor and praise your name, for you are my God. You do such wonderful things! You planned them long ago, and now you have accomplished them." Isaiah 25:1

Monday, August 9, 2010

In the Details

Over the past month the Lord has really worked out some of the big issues in my life. Huge details of my life that were just easier to ignore rather then to deal with. Thin Within showed me how to deal with them. I felt weights lift off me day by day. Freedom surge week after week and I was able to release more physical weight as well. I am much lighter physically, mentally and spiritually. Closer to my goal of losing 40 pounds. I am at 127 pounds today. I lost a total of 20 pounds since I started this journey. I have my last 20 pounds to go. Now I have to face all of the little details in my life. The small things that add up to 20 more pounds of extra baggage. Things like letting go of control, walking in His promises, having more faith and trusting God for the little things as well as the big things. I learned from a banker once that they are taught to detect counterfeit money by studying the real thing. So in order to detect all the false little details of my life. The little lies that I have believed over the years I must study the real thing. God. Sit at his feet and learn about who He is again. Dig into His word and feast. Listen for His voice and respond, and to be grateful for the bumpy journey thus far. For some reason all of the larger pieces of baggage I was carrying around with me skewed my vision of who God really is. I am learning to be grateful again. Learning to hear His voice speak to me again. I am writing again. I was a passionate journaler all of my life. But, when circumstances started to intensify in my life, I stopped writing. I had writers block for 12 years. Now, that block has been lifted since I started Thin Within. I can write again! I started this blog and a personal journal that I write in by hand every day. This new small detail of writing again has added a magnanimous resolution to my life that has brought both freedom and a beam of glorious light that illuminates the dark places in my heart. I can finally see that there is hope for my future again. I know that I will reach my goal weight of 107 pounds. That is a healthy weight for me. The last 20 pounds may not come off as quickly as the first 20 did, but I know that it will come off. I will take my time allowing God to work on the little details of my life, one by one, inch by inch, and pound by precious pound.

"...not even the smallest detail of God's law will disappear until its purpose is achieved." Matthew 5:18

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Sunday Morning

It is Sunday. My day of rest. Even though it began at the crack of dawn when my dogs Chance and Jammer jumped up on me and started to simultaneously lick my face until I woke up from a deep sleep. They did their job perfectly waking me up. They were ready for their morning walk. One of my 3 goals for the Thin Within Goals is to run one of the walks I take my dogs on. So, today I thought I would give it a go. Normally I lose my breath just thinking about running, but today I am proud to say I get to tell a new story. I ran. Not very fast, but I ran. I did not lose my breath, feel like I was going to throw up or get a cramp. I just eased into it and felt good doing it. I use to be a long distance runner when I first met my husband in 1990. I ran at least 8 miles a day with no problem what so ever. I ran all the way up until I had my first son Christian 16 years ago. Then I switched over to biking. I was not fanatical about exercise. I just enjoyed running. There was something therapeutic about it. I used my running time as a prayer time with the Lord. It was just me, Him and the road. I was able to learn many new things from God during this special time with Him. When I switched over to biking it became mine and my son Christians singing time. We sang every song we could think of together as we road along on the bike. I had a special seat put on my bike just for him to sit in. We loved our time together on the bike. It all ended after my second son Dominic came along. I just didn't have the time anymore. So I started to just take short walks when I could fit one in with the two boys in their double stroller. During this time of no running or biking in my life (the last 13 years to be exact), I noticed a steady climb in my weight. I use to think that exercise was the key and that if I just started to exercise I would lose the extra weight I put on over the inactive years of my life. But, all of us Thin Withiners know this is not true. So, as you can imagine, I failed at every attempt to lose weight with diet and exercise. It wasn't until I surrendered my stomach and my eating to the Lord that I began to lose the weight. Now after 4 months of Thin Within, my heart is in a new place. A place that knows it is through Him and Him alone I will lose all my weight. Now that I have reached this place I can finally without false hopes in my heart restore running back into my life. So I am. I have no goals on how many miles I will run. I just have a goal to start to run again. For temple maintenance. It is good for your heart and body. So, I am thrilled that I can have my prayer time of running back with the Lord. Along with two special guests, my Chance and Jammmer. They love to run. It is good for us all. I am grateful this Sunday morning that God is restoring my health. That God is restoring running to my life again. He is faithful. He always comes through. He has brought me from a sluggish, heavy place. To a energetic, free place. I am free indeed!

"...I rejoice like a great athlete eager to run the race." Psalm 19:5

Saturday, August 7, 2010


My whole life I would strive to be perfect. The perfect daughter. The perfect friend. The perfect sister. The perfect mother. The perfect wife. The perfect Christian. The perfect everything. Trying to be perfect is exhausting and depressing because it is not something we can ever achieve until we get to heaven. But... try convincing a perfectionist of this and you have a serious fight on your hands. You see, when I fail at something I would usually go into a depression about it or a denial. I would numb myself with food from the pain of not fitting into the perfect mold I thought I needed to fit into. When I was faced with adversity, I would pull the shades, lie in fetal position and cry, cry, cry! Or I would run to kitchen and eat, eat, eat! I was depressed and overweight. Yet, I did this when I was alone only. I never tried to let people know how depressed I was on the inside. How hopeless I felt. I hid this side of myself. I had to be the one who was strong. I have to be the "good" one. The one who had it all together while all around me my life was falling apart into many fractured pieces. Pieces that were as small as dust particles floated around me and put me in a deep depressing fog. I was overwhelmed by my circumstances and would use food to anesthetize myself to the pain of it all. I felt like there was no hope for me on the inside. Yet, on the outside I tried to make it all seem like everything was perfect and things were fine. My pretend perfect world was a world I lived in most of my life. I was too afraid to face myself in the mirror, because I was so unhappy with myself and the way my life had turned out. Most people who feel like a failure tend to be perfectionists. At least this is true for me. I felt like a failure so I had to be perfect at everything to make the imperfections go away. Thus, I felt a void and tried to fill it with lots and lots of food. Mangia was my middle name. But I am learning that I am accepted flaws and all by a flawless God. I do not have to be perfect nor am I expected to be perfect. I just need to be His. When I start to strive and be the old fake perfect self I remind myself that Jesus is the only perfect man that walked this earth and I am not Him. I am made in His image, but I am not Him. I need Him to save me from myself every day. So I let Him save me every day. Instead of trying to save myself and be the best at everything, I let Jesus be my Savior now. I had to forgive myself for being so hard on myself, and I had to let myself be rescued by a Savior who loves me flawed and all. We can't save ourselves, from ourselves by being perfect. We need a perfect Savior to do that. So I let God be God and I let Him save me today from my fake perfect world and all that that implies. I forgave myself for disappointing myself all of these years. Thank God for forgiveness. It sets us free to be exclusively His, and Him to be our Saviour.

"For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God not by works, so that no one can boast." Ephesians 2:8-9

Friday, August 6, 2010


So yesterday in the midst of my frustration I read chapter 20 of the Thin Within Book. It was all about forgiveness. FORGIVENESS! How can I forgive this, that or the other thing? How can I forgive him for doing that to me or her for doing this to me? But, God does ask us to forgive.
"Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you."
Colossians 3:13

Forgiving someone who has hurt us deeply can be so difficult. There have been several people in my life that have hurt me deeply. In Chapter 20 I had to list them by name and then release each one. I found that by doing this I was actually able to release myself. I may have to continue to do this several times before I truly let some of the bigger grudges and unforgiveness in my heart go. I am not a bitter person or anything, but there are just some injustices that happen in our lives at the hand of others that take us a while to release and forgive. So I am going to take my time in this exercise. I found myself even having to forgive God for allowing me to go through some of the difficult things I have had to go through in my life. I was angry and mad at God for testing me so much with difficulties. I had to release my anger and forgive God and I felt so free in doing this. During this time of reading Chapter 20 and writing in my journal all of the releases and forgiveness prayers for each person and circumstance I did not even think of food once. I had a great eating day yesterday. I feel lighter in my heart and in my body and I am ready to forgive, release and let go again today. I am going to reread Chapter 20 before I go into Part III of the book. I am going to take my time and simmer in this Chapter a bit. Allow God to burn away some of the fat of unforgiveness and the bitterness in my life until I am a sweet aroma in His nostrils today. Fat representing my unforgivness towards others. Fat that gives me no peace. So that my High Priest (Jesus) can make atonement for me and set me free. I want to be fat free today and every day that follows. I choose to forgive today. FORGIVE,
let go, and be set free! To no longer be a bitter taste and smell. But to be sweet. That is what forgiveness can do.
"And all its fat he shall burn on the altar, like the fat of the sacrifice of peace offerings. So the priest shall make atonement for him for his sin, and he shall be forgiven." Leviticus 4:26

Thursday, August 5, 2010


Frustrated! I am just frustrated. I went to the Doctors yesterday and was weighed. I only lost 3 pounds more since I left work over a month ago. I know this is not where God wants me to stay. I know I am not at my healthy weight yet. I have to lose 15 more pounds at least. I really want to lose 20 more pounds. But that might be unrealistic. I am praying about it all, to see at what number God really wants me to be. But is it a number I must shoot for here? I do not think so. So what am I so frustrated about? Well my weight yes. But the things that are causing my weight is what I am most upset about today. I have been on cloud nine since I started Thin Within about 3 weeks ago. But, I had been losing weight before I started. I actually lost most of weight before I started. 16 pounds to be exact. Before Thin Within I was doing Weigh Down. Which is the same principal as Thin Within eating only when you are at 0 (they call it a stomach growl), and stopping when you are full. I did not like the way I always felt convicted when I used WD. I use to listen to the free WD videos online and I would feel so convicted all of the time. Thin Within calls this "Club of Condemnation". I didn't really focus on my heart towards life with WD. I only focused on my heart towards food. It was only when I found Thin Within by accident that I started to really deal with my heart issues about life. Thin Within's approach may seem the same at first as Weigh Down, but the heart of Thin Within is s different then the heart of Weigh Down. It is really like apples and oranges. Both fruit, but totally different!
So what does this have to do with why I am frustrated today? Well you see I like to bring out that club and beat myself a lot. If I do not see fast results and get instant relief, I tend to feel like a failure. Thus, the "club of condemnation" is always at an arms length reach for me to grab and club myself senseless with. I am actually beating myself with one hand and typing with the other right at this very moment. I feel like 3 pounds is hardly enough weight to release in the 4 week period since I last weighed myself. But hey it is still 3 pounds more that I lost and not 3 pounds that I gained right? Why am I so much of a control freak? Why do I beat myself up so much? I guess I have a lot to learn don't I? I have not arrived yet by any means. The last 20 pounds will be the ones that will come off slowly, with a vicious fight but they will come off. Because: "being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus" Philippians 1:6
I must not forget this. But, I sometimes do.
How about you? What frustrates you about this Thin Within journey you are on? Please write me back, I could use the encouragement today.
God bless you all on your journeys.

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." Romans 8:28

"I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus." Philippians 3:14

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Thank You God

We are going over God's Attributes in my Thin Within Group Chats and studies. Here is a list of some that I started to work on. This list is not finished yet. Also, I have included a visual of some of the ones dear to my heart. Hope you enjoy. Apply these attributes to your day. When life tells us no we can't. Remember who He is and know that God says yes we can! He is AWESOME! When food calls out to me and I am not at 0 I try to remember who He is and the temptation usually goes away. I may have to do this several times during the day. When I am upset or anxious about something, I read my list that I started and watch this video I have included. Sometimes I need both. Hope these help.

Attributes of God
By: Angelina

The Prince of glory,
Everlasting King.
He is my strong tower,
A Shelter over me.
He is my hiding place,
A Warrior,
A King.
He is the Great I am,
He has rescued me.
He is the Prince of peace,
The one who calms the raging sea.
He is the great physician,
My fortress when I am weak.
He is the Lion of the tribe of Judah,
The all consuming fire.
He is Jehovah Rapha
The one who heals me.
He is the King of kings,
The Lord or lords,
The Redeemer,
The Rock of all ages,
The Anchor,
The one true God.
He is my all in all,
My everything,
My one and only.
He is the truth,
The way,
The life.
He is the Alpha and Omega,
Beginning and End.
He is also everything in between.
He is my hope for the future.
The restorer of the breach.
The beauty for my ashes
He is the song that I sing,
The song that I dance to.
He is the cornerstone,
The one the builders rejected.
He is the Saviour,
The Messiah,
The Lamb who was slain for me.
He is my defender,
My shield in times of trouble,
My protector,
My best friend.
He is to me what no other can ever be,
My hero.
He is indescribable,
He is undeniable,
He is uncontainable.
He is Amazing!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Come Awake!

This is a very powerful video that touched my heart deeply. It is timely for me to post this today. I have been set free from so much these past four months on my adventure to lose weight. I share this video today to remind myself and others of the great miracles that have taken place already and the ones I have a hope to be set free from tomorrow. God is AWESOME! Behold Him today. COME AWAKE!

Cast Your Anxiety on Him

Yesterday even though I wrote about a new season in my life, I had a bad eating day. I ate outside of 0-5 almost all day. You see, I was worried. I was stressed because I was worried, and I was emotional. With these 3 strikes against me I was sure to have a bad day. In truth I have always been a worry wort. I worry about worrying. But God tells us to :

"cast all your anxieties on Him because He cares for us.." 1 Peter 5:7

I know this scripture by heart, but it totally slipped my mind yesterday when I was eating everything in sight because I was anxious. I am anxious because I leave for vacation on the 20th and I have to leave my beloved dogs at home. My 20 year old nephew is coming to house sit and dog sit for me while I am gone. But, I am still nervous about it. My dogs mean a great deal to me and I want to care for them, because I don't think any one else can care for them the way I can. I am WORRIED I am ANXIOUS. So much in fact, that in the midst of the new spring song I am hearing and the new dance moves I am learning to this new song; I ate, I ate and I ate some more. But God spoke to me this morning through a great woman of God that I met through the Thin Within Website. She spoke today in her blog about "The Divine Marble Jar". She even had a video teaching on her blog. As always this woman spoke to my heart. She said that even when we mess up not one marble will be taken out of the jar. The marble jar represents all of the good moments in our journey. All of the moments we did do the right thing and eat the right way.I encourage you to view her blog especially if you have had a bad eating day. You can view her blog at:

I also have her blog listed under my favorite links category on my blog.

Remember today that yesterday is gone and:

"He who was seated on the throne said, "I am making everything new!" Then he said, "Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true."
Revelation 21:5

Amen to that!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

A New Song

As I sit and stare out onto the water; reflecting, relaxing, feeling alive again. I realize that the Winter Season of my life is over now. Gone! Spring has finally arrived. I see buds on the trees where leaves will start to form, green grass that once was buried under many feet of snow. The snow is melted, the ice has thawed and I am in a new place. A place where the meadow flowers are about to start blooming. A rainbow of colors are about to burst forth and a beautiful fragrance will again fill the air all around me. Yes the winter was long. It was cold. It was lifeless and colorless. But now comes the Spring. The birds have returned home to their trees singing their lovely songs. The trees of the fields all clap their hands. I finally can dance again to the music of Spring. Yes, Winter is hard. The song of winter is sad and brings many tears. But, this song is vital. Because without the Winter song we would never learn to dance when spring sings to us a new song. This new song of Spring brings with it a hope for the future to hear the Symphony of Summer.

"You will go out in joy
and be led forth in peace;
the mountains and hills
will burst into song before you,
and all the trees of the field
will clap their hands."
Isaiah 55:12

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Better than a Hallelujah (lyrics) Amy Grant

Today I share with you the song on my heart today. Well to be honest this song has been in my heart all week. At the bottom of this post is a video of this wonderful song by Amy Grant and some visuals that echo some of the miseries I have experienced before. I love how our miseries are like a melody to Him. Just the thought of knowing that when we cry out to God about the things that have gone wrong in our lives He hears our sorrowful cries as a sweet and tender melody in His ear. A song that to Him is better than any Hallelujah can be. Don't give up hope today my friends. Whatever place you are in right now, whatever season you are in Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall... God sees you, He hears you and He will come quickly to rescue you. He hears the song you sing, and He sings a new song back to you. A song of joy, a song of love and a song of acceptance. Let His song be the song in your hearts today.

"My heart is steadfast, O God! I will sing and make melody with all my being!" Psalm 108:1

Sing a new song today. Even in the midst of a dark storm in your life a song can arise. Enjoy this video.

Friday, July 30, 2010

A Song to Drive Away my Friday Fizzle

Let's face it, sometimes life just fizzles. It gets so monotonous that we forget how very precious it is. We get into a routine and like programmable robots we just get through our programed day. In our robotic trance we miss it. We miss the beauty of it all. Take for example this morning. I woke up to the same thing I wake up to every morning. My two dogs Chance and Jammer pleading with me to go for their morning walk. There I was in my robotic trance, going through the motions. Thinking, can't someone else walk the dogs, why am I always the one who has to do it? The truth is, my dogs don't want anyone else to take them for their walk. They want me and me alone to take them for their walk. I am their master, and they love when I meet their needs. They expect it, they relish in it. So, there I was this morning walking my dogs in a trance. No life in me. Just going through the motions. Then something happened that caused me to break out of my trance. My dogs (both of them), sat down in the road, in the middle of our walk and just looked up at me. Both of them wagging their tails just looking up at me. Then in harmony they began to howl while they looked at me. They were singing a sad song. A song with a story. I looked into their sad eyes, and I could tell by their eyes that they were trying to pull me out of the trance I was in. Singing the blues to me saying, "Mommy why can't you enjoy this time we have together? Please Mommy! You are not taking us for a walk, we are walking together." I got down to their level. Kissed each of them on their adorable faces and said; "OK boys lets go for our walk together."
They both got up and began walking again. I walked with them. Taking it all in. Shaking off the Friday fizzle of my same old, same old day and realizing for the first time in a long time, "This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it." Psalm 118:24
How does this have to do with my weight loss journey? Well,my dogs sad song broke the trance I was under. It helped me to shake off the Friday fizzle. God's song over my life helps to break free from not just a fizzle but years of bondage in my life. My journey with Thin Within has allowed my ears to be open to God's song over my life again. To break me out of the trance of this world and what the world says about weight loss. His song gave me the courage and faith I needed to trust in His melody over my life and to dance with Him to this new song. Just like my dogs song helped me to break out of a trance and walk with them this morning. I don't want to just go through the motions anymore. I want to give my all in everything and rejoice while doing it! I want that new song to be my theme song.
What new song is God singing to you today? Stop! Break free from the trance of your Friday fizzle and listen to this new song. Embrace it! Dance to it! Rejoice!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Take me out to the Ball Game.

Last night I had the rare opportunity to go to a Ball Game with my family. My husband's company gave him tickets for our whole family to have a wonderful night out together. I was excited to go. But... a little nervous too. I was raised to believe that when you go to the Ball Park you have to eat Ball Park food. It is a must! You must try the Ball Park Hot Dog, the peanuts, and of course the popcorn. In the back of my mind as we drove to the stadium all of these programed "lies" danced inside my brain. I had been brained washed by these lies for my entire life. How could I possibly overcome the power that these lies have over me and not eat Ball Park Food? So, the battle began. I had to remind myself of the simple guidelines that I was following for the past 4 months. Every time a lie began to dance it's flirtatious dance inside my head I began to combat it with the truth. So when I thought about how great a Ball Park Hot dog would taste, I reminded myself, "Angie, you are not hungry, you just ate. You are at a 4. Yes, a Ball Park hot dog is yummy, but obedience to God is better." Then when I started to think about the peanuts, surely I could have a peanut. I am in fact only at 4. One peanut would bring me to 5. I could eat a mere peanut. Again I was reminded, "Angie you just ate, you know you will not stop at one peanut, why torture yourself? You can fight this urge to eat, greater is He that is in you then that peanut." Was I really going to loose to a peanut?
So, we get to the Ball Park. As we were walking to the stadium from the parking lot, the smells assaulted me. They cried out to me. They beckoned to me. I knew my battle with Ball Park Food had really just begun. The mind battle getting to the stadium was only a preview, the real fight awaited me.
We entered the Ball Park, found our seats and sat in them. They were awesome seats. Right behind the dug out of the home team. We were in the middle of all the action. The mascot danced in front of us tossing free tee shirts and baseballs to the crowd. The Vally Cat dancers were dancing the chicken dance, the team players were signing my sons baseball, and I got a free give away. It was a perfect summer night. Not a cloud in the sky and a nice breeze to keep us comfortable in the warm summer night.
My only complaint, I wish I could have been more present in the moment instead of fighting a food battle in my head.
I could not tell you who hit a ball or who struck out, I was too busy looking at the hot dog the guy to my left was eating. I couldn't tell you the color of the valley cat's uniform, I was too busy looking at the family eating the ice cream Sunday's in front of me. I couldn't even tell you the final score, I was too busy noticing what all the others around me were eating too. Like the guy to my right with the bag of peanuts and box or popcorn. Or the little girl diagonal to me eating the cotton candy. I was too busy fighting not to desire food that I missed it all. The whole game. Before I knew it the game was over. I do know our team won, but I don't know by how much.
My goal, my hearts burning desire, is that through this journey to become Thin Within I can start to be present in my life again. That food and all that that word implies will not be my focal point. But that life and the fullness thereof will be my focal point. That the battle not to eat will be replaced by knowing I am where I should be and enjoying the moment when I am in the moment. That a peanut will not be the end of me. I mean really, a peanut! I end with this scripture that God led me to as soon as I got home and prayed about the night. This is my prayer and goal for myself today, at this very moment in my life.

>"And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise." Phillipans 4:8

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Before The Morning ~ Josh Wilson

song of the day... enjoy!

Cutting Deeper

Last night during a live chat with my Thin Within group, our wonderful leader said something quite profound. She mentioned how God is like a surgeon with a scalpel. Ouch! Was my reply. Every day I have a private prayer and meditation time with the Lord. During this time I open my bible every day to wherever it may fall and start to read. I was astounded when my eyes fell upon this scripture today.

"For the word of God is full of living power. It is sharper than the sharpest knife, cutting deep into the uttermost thoughts and desires. It exposes us for what we really are. Nothing in all creation can hide from him. Everything is naked and exposed before his eyes. This is the God to whom we must explain all that we have done." Hebrews 4: 12-13

How powerful this scripture is. When I read it my jaw fell open in awe of Him. I felt for the first time in a long time His presence wrap around me. I feel His breath on my cheek and hear His heart as I laid my head on His chest. It was a special prayer and meditation time this morning. Life changing.

I began to reflect on one of the lessons in the Thin Within book that I did last weekend. It is called Mirror, Mirror. I cannot tell you the page or chapter this lesson was in because remember I forgot my book at my camp. But, I can tell you it had a profound effect on me. Basically the lesson was to go in front of a mirror and look at your self naked and exposed. Look and see yourself as God's workmanship. God's temple. I was very nervous about looking at myself in the mirror. I hadn't looked at myself in years. I never ever undressed near a mirror. No way! No how! But, I wanted to invest 100% into this book and it's teachings so I did it. I looked at myself in the mirror. Here is my journal entry for that day and that lesson.

OK day 4. Look at myself in mirror and what did I see... At first it wasn't pretty but I tried to embrace it and look deeper. Just a body on the outside. Yes, But can I look past the flesh into the spirit... the heart? It wasn't easy but I allowed God to wash over me and go deep. Past the flesh... I saw a wounded child. Hurt and confused. Wondering how I got this way. How? I have many "locked closet doors", that need to be opened. I will finally give God the key's back and let Him unlock the doors I kept hidden from Him and myself all these years. Clean out the cobwebs and find that hidden, deep hurt that I obviously have not forgotten or gotten over or I wouldn't be here. So the digging begins... I will no longer use food to numb the pain of this digging. I will instead work past the pain. Just like I did when I was in labor for my two beautiful boys. Have a focal point (Jesus) and breathe... Then in the end new birth. Can't wait to see what it looks like. Keep you posted.

God already sees what I have hidden deep within me. Even the ugly awful things. He loves me anyways. He loves me unconditionally. Yes, He does have to cut some of the disease and sin out of my life. But the pain of being exposed is so minimal compared to the pain of keeping the disease and sin hidden. My heart ached and I felt so tired and depressed when I tried to hide myself from God. But, I feel free now that I am allowing God to work on the deep things inside of me. As He uses His scalpel (His Living word), to cut away the dark places in me, I feel better, stronger and more alive then I ever have in years. I am truly becoming Thin Within and oh yea, I am getting thinner on the outside too.
What are some things God is cutting in your life? Where have you felt His scalpel? Sit back let Him cut and wait and see what comes forth from it. Go deep my friends. DEEP!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

A New Day

So today is a new day. A day where I am forced to go even deeper. I was forced to deal with an issue in my life that I was afraid to look at. That I really did not want to even touch with a ten foot pole. But, someone else's courage to speak out about a certain topic opened a door of opportunity for me to do the same. The topic is of a mature nature. Sexual Addiction. Not my addiction but someone else's addiction that has effected me personally. A loved one whom I care deeply about has had a pornographic addiction for a long time. I have personally known about it for 12 years now. But, I am sure it started long before I discovered it. How does this person's addiction relate to me personally? Well, you see this person means a great deal to me. He is my best friend really. When he decides to look at porn instead of spend time with me it makes me feel rejected by him. It makes me run to food instead of God. Sounds silly I know. But it is so very painfully true. When I feel rejected I run to food. When I feel unloved I run to food. When I feel like I am not good enough I run to food. I am safe with my food. It won't hurt me. It will make me feel better. It is always there for me when I need it.
In truth food is hurting me. It is making me feel worse about myself then my friend makes me feel. It is not the answer or the solution to my rejection problem. As a matter of fact food makes me feel more rejected.
Imagine being told by someone you love and care about that they do not want to be with you because you are too fat. Well this special person that I mentioned in this post told me that once. Given we were in a heated argument at the time and usually he would never say something so hurtful to me. But, he did. Those words resonated with me for many years, adding pounds to the scale with each painful thought. Words. How powerful they are. But, actions are more powerful. The fact that my special friend would prefer a pornographic inter net encounter over a real person to person relationship with me drove me to food in a way that caused me to gain weight like crazy. The hurts, wounds and scars in life should not drive us to food. On the contrary, they should cause us to run in the arms of the one that loves us unconditionally. The one that loves us in spite of the weight. The one who can take the very things that knock us down in life and use them to get us back up again.
Do not let the short comings of others bring you any where but to His feet. Sobbing uncontrollably if you have to.

" He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever."
>Revelation 21:4

I feel lighter in my heart then I have in years. All because the courage of others. Others who have walked where I am walking now and have survived and grown. These messages of hope have given me the courage to know beyond the shadow of a doubt, I can face the things in my life that plague my heart and conquer them. I can run to God and find freedom. I can sit in His presence and cry for hours and walk away in freedom. This freedom comes by His glorious light. A light that illuminates the dark places in our lives and brings us hope for our future. There is nothing too dark that the light of His love cannot shine upon and set us free from. I feel the light of His life in my life. I am finally breaking free out of the dark places. Nothing anyone does or says to me can take this light from me. You too can have this light in your life. You can feel freedom like never before. If I can, you can. Prayerfully, my special friend can too.

"When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."
John 8:12