• Devotional,  Encouragement,  Fighting Fear

    Take Two {Day 1}

    {A few months before my diagnosis in 1998, I rested while my hubby and his parents walked around the Miami Zoo.) Well, as I posted devotionals weekly for about 6 months or so, thinking my subscribers were receiving my blogs, it turns out maybe 3 sweet friends were the recipients. Ha. I’ve since updated my subscriber list to include all my favorite people who have asked to be included. Can you do me a favor? If you were receiving my blogs in the past, can you comment below and let me know? This way I’ll know if I need to make further adjustments. Because of my snafu, I’m posting my…

  • Devotional,  Encouragement,  Fighting Fear,  Uncategorized

    Pausing {Day 30}

    {Photo credit: Ben White via Unsplash} {Day 30} “Yet I am confident I will see the Lord’s goodness while I am here in the land of the living. Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the Lord.” ~ Psalm 27:13&14 NLT   God is good. He is perfect. This world, my friend, is not. Maybe this is why I’ve dreamed of discovering that elusive genie who supposedly grants three unbelievable wishes, because my first request would be to wipe away every disease from this planet. But you know what? This dream of mine will one day come true, but it won’t be from this…

  • Devotional,  Encouragement,  Fighting Fear

    Say What? {Day 29}

    {Photo credit A.L. from Unsplash.com} {Day 29} “This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” ~ Joshua 1:9 NLT   I’ll never forget the day in 2019, when I pounded widely on my steering wheel, yelling out to God. Looking a tad crazy didn’t faze me anymore, even if I was sitting at a stop light. And I’m sure the cars next to me imagined this mom must have gone nuts. But I no longer cared. Truly. I know. Not the most peaceful type of action a strong believer should admit to, right? But sometimes my…

  • Devotional,  Encouragement,  Fighting Fear

    Who Stands Beside You? {Day 28}

     {Day 28}   “Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right side to accuse him.” ~ Zechariah 3:1 NIV   “Saints are formed in the crucible.” At least, that’s what my inner healing counselor said after I wept away at the current difficulty facing us. Saints, she said, are Christians set apart for God’s special purpose, and their purifying trial that they walk through (their crucible) leads to the creation of something new. Leaning in, she said that the fire scorching my skin (my husband’s unexplainable health issues) only grew my faith, and I should consider that…

  • Devotional,  Encouragement,  Fighting Fear

    Living Between Two Gardens {Day 27}

    {Day 27} “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” ~ John 16:33 NIV   I’ve looked, but I’ve yet to find it. You know. That profound verse in Scripture that reassure us that we will live perfect lives here on earth, free from any conflict. This dreamy ideal hasn’t lined any page of the Bible. If it did, I’d have these words tattooed along my arm, and I’m not a tattoo-type of gal. But for this type of promise, I’d ink away any part of my body, because I long for…

  • Devotional,  Encouragement,  Fighting Fear

    Sickness Brings Freedom? {Day 26}

    {Day 26} “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.   Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” ~ Proverbs 3:5-6 NLT   In my mid-forties, I grew a goose-egg sized knot out of the center of my chest. (You guys, I can’t make these medical oddities up.) But here it was, protruding inches below my neck for all to see. And of course, I wasted time imagining this growth was another tumor, since it was directly above where my first growth had mushroomed back in 1998. The good news is that after another CT scan,…

  • Devotional,  Encouragement,  Fighting Fear,  Uncategorized

    Starstruck, Anyone? {Day 25}

    {Day 25} “In the [reverent] fear of the Lord there is strong confidence, And His children will [always] have a place of refuge.” ~ Proverbs 14:26 AMP   I remember the day I met Jerry B. Jenkins. You guys. Jerry.      B.      Jenkins. Some of you crinkled your nose, didn’t you? If you’ve never heard of Mr. Jenkins, let me just tell you, he’s a successful Christian writer that co-authored the uber-popular Left Behind series. So for a speaker-turned-writer like me, meeting him in 2010 at his Writing for the Soul Conference felt like shaking the hand of Will Smith, Ryan Reynolds, or Reese Witherspoon. Yep. Pick your favorite celebrity, and…

  • Devotional,  Encouragement,  Fighting Fear

    Believe With Me {Day 24}

    {Day 24} “Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.” ~ Proverbs 16:24 NASB   “I’m believing God is healing you!” That’s what a sweet friend of mine said multiple times as I battled my countless illnesses. She was my encourager. My rock. My messenger from God to cheer my weary soul. Each time I talked with her, she shared some Scripture that always filled my heart with hope. I needed this. I just wanted someone to believe with me that I would beat whatever sickness I faced. And she wasn’t the only one. My husband was right there, cheering me on day after…

  • Devotional,  Encouragement,  Fighting Fear

    Set Your Spirit Free {Day 23}

    {Day 23} “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and love and sound mind.” ~ 2 Timothy 1:7 NKJV   I don’t want to worry anymore. Especially about my health. Or money. Or my kids acting like kids. Everywhere I turn there is something I could fret over. Like at the time of this writing (2018), we had mold mushrooming in the corner of our bathroom closet next to our AC unit. With my husband pretty much fatigued day and night, this led my mind down another rabbit trail. Could mold be the reason for his failing health? I’ve cried out for help, and…

  • Devotional,  Encouragement,  Fighting Fear

    Sling a Sucker-Punch {Day 22}

    {Day 22} “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person’s strength.” ~Proverbs 17:22 NLT   We were still in a scary season of my husband’s unexplainable health issues, where we hopped from doctor to doctor, practically begging someone to find out why he felt like falling asleep each time his sat to rest. Emotionally, we were spent. It wasn’t until many months into his slow healing process that I was reminded of this beautiful truth of how God created a built-in medicinal aid that releases endorphins when we do one simple thing: Laugh. Do you want to sling a sucker-punch to the gut of your…

  • Devotional,  Encouragement,  Fighting Fear

    You Can Do Anything {Day 21}

    {Day 21} “I know that you can do anything, and no one can stop you.” ~ Job 42:2 NLT   December 2018 was another rough month. This time, my husband was fighting an additional odd sickness. His new gastrologist ordered a colonoscopy test after he felt much fatigue and stress from a taxing job, gobs of pressure, and his current physician switching some of his daily medications. On top of this, he decided it was time to start his own company. Health-wise, his body was shot. My husband is a brilliant go-getter, yet I had never seen him this frail before. During this transition of starting a new company, I’d…

  • Devotional,  Encouragement,  Fighting Fear

    Today is Going to be a Good Day {Day 20}

    {Day 20} “The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.” ~ John 10:10 NLT {Emphasis added}   Oh, please reread that last sentence that Jesus said above one more time. I’ll wait. How cool is it that Christ wants to give us a satisfying life? But honestly, I struggled to wrap my brain around this verse, especially during one Thanksgiving holiday when my husband discovered a rather odd bump on his body. Of course, my mind hopped to the dreaded C-word after I looked up the warning signs on WebMD. Each day I obsessed, wanting to know…

  • Devotional,  Encouragement,  Fighting Fear

    Words Have Power {Day 19}

    {Come on. This middle school picture of me is hilarious. ; ) } {Day 19} “And a small rudder makes a huge ship turn wherever the pilot chooses to go, even though the winds are strong. In the same way, the tongue is a small thing that makes grand speeches. But a tiny spark can set a great forest on fire.” ~ James 3:4&5 NLT (emphasis added) & “Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you.” ~ Deuteronomy 31:8 NLT   I used to call myself a dumb blonde. I know. Not the…

  • Devotional,  Encouragement,  Fighting Fear

    Stay Alert! {18}

    {Day 18} “Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.” ~ 1 Peter 5:8 NLT   It started with a whisper. Do you feel that? That pinch in your upper chest, near your heart. My hand tapped the area. There it was again. If felt like someone had threaded my vein with a needle and left the pointy metal lodged inside. A couple of years prior, a stent, or small tube was placed in my Superior Vena Cava (SVC), and I had read that sometimes stents slide and need to be sutured back in place. Many…

  • Devotional,  Encouragement,  Fighting Fear

    Everything? {Day 17}

    {Day 17} “Do everything without complaining and arguing,” ~ Philippians 2:14 NLT It turns out, my breathing problems, extreme fatigue, and upper body swelling after open-heart surgery were caused by a blocked vein called the Superior Vena Cava (SVC). Basically, my blood flow was restricted from my heart to the rest of my body from scar tissue where my port (internal IV connected to main artery) was placed 14 years prior from my chemotherapy treatment. This type of scar tissue is not normal, and typically does not affect other patients. Yet, we had hit another hiccup, one that drove me into a rather laughable despair considering the crazy medical journey…