Monday, April 30, 2012

Lonely Noise Turned Loving Noise

I started writing this over a week ago.  However, I feel a tugging in my heart that I should finish this and post it today!  So here goes nothing!

There are so many things swirling around in my head.  Things I want to say and stories I want to tell.  However, in my thoughts there seems to be an underlying theme.  Loneliness.  It is as if in every part of my life I see people and the common theme is loneliness.

There are so many ways for people to keep in contact these days, that we take for granted we are actually talking to each other.  I can send an email or a quick text message but when is the last time you took the time to sit and visit with some one for the sake of visiting?  We constantly have some sort of media around us all the time; hang on my phone is ringing, I have a text message, or wait let me Google that!  I see that people are surrounded all the time by conversation and noise, but so often I hear them say, I have no one to TALK to. 

I think one of Satan's greatest weapons may be the whispers found in our own heads saying, you are all alone.  Clearly you can go on Facebook or Twitter and have hundreds of friends who will "Like" what you are saying or "follow you."  I ask this, how many will stop their day, take the time to ask how you are really doing? Then the next question is, why not?  Or,  will you really tell them how you are doing?

I believe there is a lie out there, and it says: NO ONE CARES.  It is propagated by the media.  The stories on the evening news tell of tragedies that were forgotten or of injustices done, while these stories may be true, I do not believe that they are the "NORM."  We desensitize our lives and act as if things don't really matter, when they do.  It is funny, people will unite in protest over an alleged injustice, but the unification is almost never without some violence, bad language, or destruction of property.  In the midst of all the outrage, you never see anyone actually caring for the victims.  The only time you see care for a victim on TV is in the case of a natural disaster, but that is often coupled with an element of criticism over the type or quality of care.

I believe that people do still care about people.  We spend our time talking, talking, talking, but not acting, acting, acting.  As a Christian, it is hard to live the words of God.  As a Christian, there is a constant commentary on how to be and how not to be: are you being inclusive or judgmental?  In all the rhetoric surrounding how we should be, it appears as though many are just not moving in any direction.  If we want to change our society, our home, our lives, sometimes the place to start is with ourselves.  The media would say, you have no personal responsibility, it is your parents fault, or well, anybody  fault except your own.  However, I have found that when I want some one or something to change, the change has to start in my heart and attitude first.

I believe that loneliness is the single thing that drives most of the problems we have today.  We fill our lives with white noise.  We talk about things of no importance, and hope that the important things are handled by someone other than ourselves.  We may ask each other how we are doing, but the answer is seldom more than a, "Oh I am fine, same old same old."  The truth is that we would feel less alone if we shared our lives with one another on a level deeper than the superficial.

It is not only sharing our lives with others, we also need to share our lives with GOD.  I sometimes find myself fumbling around in my head questioning my life and decisions only to end up thinking I've done everything wrong.  I contemplate my life with diabetes and all the sudden NO ONE can understand and I have fatally wounded myself with worry and what if's.  I carry it on my heart and do not speak a word about it to anyone except maybe a casual, "I am OK but," mention to my family.  It is when I am broken that God reminds me, "Cast all your care upon HIM for He cares for you."  It is like an epiphany, in all my worry and conversations in my head, I realize I should be sharing this with God.

I think we all want to hash things out, out loud to God and with trusted friends.  However,  it is easy to carry a burden creating loneliness and wish it away, without giving it away to God.  After all, without the presence of God those burdens only seem to gain weight.  I don't know about you, but I don't need any extra weight!  We carry our real burdens with us, and so often we tell no one, not even God.  We think that they are unimportant, too embarrassing, or that no one else could possibly understand. That is the lie that Satan would like us to believe.  He wants us to feel alone and isolated.  The truth is that we have a loving God.    We have a God in Jesus who became human to understand all of us.  All we have to do is share our concerns with him, trust him, and most of all believe that He is the son of God.  When we share our burdens and lives with Him life is not lonely, but abundant.   If we will allow ourselves to be open and vulnerable to share our lives, He will not only fill us with the Holy Spirit, but he will give us people at the right time to encourage us, and help us live a life connected and fulfilled.

Today,  I challenge you, to stop leading a life of the lonely and start sharing it with God.  Take the burden you are carrying and hand it over to God.  I challenge you to ask someone:  How are you today?  Then really listen to the answer.  I challenge you to pray for your concerns and for the concerns of a friend or two.  Let's make this life of constant noise, be noise that is loving to one another.  Let's silence the loneliness and fill our lives with more God and more love!

This is my mindset, now let me hear yours.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012


Today was a hard diabetes day.  I have been sick for about 10 days now, and I am not shaking it the way I want to.  The thing I hate about being sick on top of diabetes is that I am forced to face the awful word limitations.  I am forced to face my limitations, which in turn makes me feel weak. It is also the time when I get scared.  I could have a regular cold, but in my head it is the beginning of the complications that are associated with diabetes.  Let me qualify this by saying, that the fear only comes after a round of antibiotics and still not much improvement.  As I have said before, diabetes life most of the time is just something I do, and not often do I find myself in the dull drums of diabetes.  Today has been a beat myself up, talk myself down, scare myself day, because I am tired of it.

I sit and think; maybe some chocolate would do the trick?  Then I am reminded, that chocolate will only make me feel worse about myself.   Chocolate tastes so sweet but it betrays me with the high blood sugar, and weight gain.  Oh sweet sweet chocolate you are a tasty tragedy!

The first few days I was sick, this was my prayer.  Dear God, please let this take its course and please show me what I need so I do not have to repeat this anytime soon.   As a result of my Bible study on trials, I was thinking, this is a short trial.  I want to learn what I need to learn so that it will pass, and I will be left stronger, immune-ally speaking.  Then by Friday, I was calling out to God, ok, cough cough, cough, I am, cough cough, cough, ready to be better.  While I feel better, I am not completely better, and I have set into frustration and discouragement.  It took all I had to go to bible study this morning.  I had not done my homework.  I purposely skipped the first hour thinking I could get there in time to see the video portion, and that I would not have to share.

God had something very different in mind.  This week, they watched the video first!  I sat there with almost nothing written in my book.  I had not even read the sections of the study.  As I sat there listening to the over view of each of the 5 days’ worth of homework.  God gave me this

“My grace is sufficient for you, my power made perfect in weakness……”   
2 Corinthians 12:9

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I have heard this verse like about a million times.  Immediately that Christian song by Chris Tomlin; Your Grace is enough, comes to mind.  I am singing it in my head now.  For me, the real nugget here is that God’s power is perfected in weakness. 

Today I feel weak.  My spirit is weak, my resolve is weary and I feel a bit of a mess.   It is like I need to just cry it out or whatever, so I can get on with the getting on!  However, according to the rest of 2 Corinthians 12:9-10: 

“….. Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities.  For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
Now if I read that right, then GOD is closest to me when I feel this way.  He feels my heart ache and frustrations over the things I cannot change.  The power of Christ rests on me.  That is incredibly encouraging, a little scary, and almost overwhelming.  I admit, I cried a little after I left class.  I guess my tears were a mix of comfort, and guilt.  After all, I didn’t do my part (homework/scripture reading/ and struggled with my prayers in the last week), but GOD IS STILL DOING HIS PART EVERY DAY ALL THE TIME!  Amazing!

It is funny how with God, it is always perfect timing.  He knew that I needed to sit and listen.  He knew exactly what I needed to hear.  I would love to say that I am never going to be discouraged again, but I am hoping that the next time I am caught in the feel sorry for myself syndrome, I will remember that in my weakness, God’s grace is enough, and His power made perfect in weakness. 

As the day draws to a close, I find that after writing this and pondering these verses, I am renewed.   I am in fact made strong knowing that, at the end of the day God is enough.  It is his strength I need to rely on, not my own.  I will continue to walk this life with diabetes and there will be more tough days ahead.  I hope that I will remember that those days when I am discouraged, scared, and at my weakest are really the days that God is closest to me whispering," My power is made perfect in your weakness, let me rest my power upon you."

This is my mind set, now let me hear yours!