I must not complain. I MUST NOT COMPLAIN. I MUST NOT COMPLAIN! I MUST NOT COMPLAIN!!!!!
I hope I am getting better about that. When so many have, and are, suffering SO MUCH. I shudder to think how it must sound to people who had to say their last goodbye via cell phone. My own little issues are so insignificant in the face of the reality of Covid-19. I suppose I’m like the rest of humanity in the face of enormous grief, enormous death… all we can really see is our own little corner, our own miniscule lives…
. That’s the thing that is SO remarkable to me about God. How can he love us so much? How can He care about a selfish little worm such as I. It is because He Is Love. Not “He has love.” Not “He feels love.”
. He IS love. He IS LOVE.
. Some people have been fed the lie that it is God who causes suffering. In reality, the Bible teaches that it is the evil one who caused death and suffering, by lying to the first human pair in the garden of Eden. That one caused them to die by his lie that they could eat the forbidden fruit and not die. “You surely will not die.”, he claimed.
” Then death spread to all men”
. But God made a way out for us immediately. Immediately, right there in Eden. He spoke about Jesus, about how His Son would ultimately kill off the devil, do away with death forever, and by his willing sacrifice would give humans a way to forgiveness and a clean conscience before God.
. Even little worms like me! Isn’t that amazing. Yes. It really is.
. So, don’t ever doubt God’s love, or that HE IS LOVE. He did not cause this pandemic, nor will he allow such things to continue forever. There will be an end to all human suffering very soon…you can count on it. Don’t give up, keep on seeking…
. I will meditate on these things today, and stay upbuilt, and focus my mind on helping others…and I wish you all peace. We will give a great shout of praise to our God, all of us together, in the not too distant future…
Is anyone out there as old as I am? I grew up to the Mary Tyler Moore show, on every week as I recall. When I was 10 or so, she was beautiful to me, not just as a pretty woman (which she was and is, if she is still alive, is she?…)but as a woman in “the workplace”. I was too young to understand the dynamics of discrimination against women, I was buying into the whole “be a good girl, speak when you are spoken to” misogynist mantra.
Flamingo Billiards Tour at Amy’s Billiards (pictured) The Year Before Fall
Day Old Cleopatra
Mommy and Izzy, in Alabama
my sweet, one eyed pup
That is where the slogan “We’re going to make it after all” first made me feel warm and fuzzy. My folks both worked long, hard hours to feed my brother and I. We saw them briefly each morning. Mom on her way to bed after all night at a local “old folks” hospital, and Dad on his way to the Speciality Steel Mill. The only thing “special” about the steel mill that I could see was the fact that Dad was “‘specially”angry when he got home.
In God’s Memory
baby cleo, in her new dress!
Dad and his Fan Club!
aren’t i the cutest thing you’ve ever seen?
inside the circle of my heart
KODAK Digital Still Camera
Baby Cleo, who had to learn to live with one eye!
. We didn’t want for anything that I ever knew, except that I never got designer jeans like my best friend, with the rich dad. No, my belly was full, and I was as happy as a chubby pre-teen with thick glasses and a mouth full of braces could be in the late 70’s. The only thing lacking was joy, any kind of joy, at home. Even “The Holidays”, when I still celebrated them, were joyless, because there was always disappointment lurking under the tree. Family gatherings were nice before I got old enough to feel the undercurrents of dislike and tension that flowed thru the affairs, like the lambrusco in the fancy glasses.
. We are going to make it. After all.
“i’m not sure how my feet work yet…”
He Love Us!
African Lily, one of my favorites!
sunset in paradise
. I’m in the ” after all” phase of life now. And I have made it, thus far . All the family drama is distant history, now that my parents are dead they don’t fight as much.(chuckle). I have learned to live without them here, and I have gleefully learned to live without my abusive ex and now deceased husband. (No, I’m not gleeful at his being deceased.)
. I have lived on my own for 4 years now, Dad died on 3/7/16, and Mom on 3/21/10. The grief did not stab me like a bayonet to the stomach this year, no, it was a dull, ongoing ache that I thought I didn’t feel, until this very moment. A heaviness inside my heart, a gray, damp blanket on my view. But I have made it, after all…
My Izzy, 2005-2017
This is me now, the pain has mellowed, I see love ahead!
“The Sentinel’s Prayer”, acrylic on canvas, Susan T. Martin2017
. I want to share happy tidings, tho’, not the fear mongering that is flying all around the internet and all the airwaves. Yes, this Pandemic is a very, very bad thing. Many of our loved ones, friends and neighbors will get very sick, and many will die. More people will die than usually do in a “regular” time period. It will be very difficult to work, to shop, to meet with friends and family. However, we must endure these difficulties with a hopeful demeanor, and share our hope with Everyone we can!!! We All need to support our fellow humans, and we CAN!!!!!
You may ask why, and I understand how hard it is not to have a pity party when one has no access to TP or Oreos. I am not immune to this situation, especially the Oreo thing. But as a person who has lived with chronic intractable pain all over my body for the last 20years, I do have experience with the power of positivity shared. This will be a HUGE HELP TO ALL OF US: BE UPBEAT AND POSITIVE WHEN SPEAKING TO OTHERS! DO NOT BOG OTHERS DOWN BY SHARING NEGATIVITY SUCH AS WHAT WE CAN’T DO, BUT FOCUS ON STEPS WE CAN TAKE.
One thing we must do to help is STAY POSITIVE when we talk to others. Just as you would not talk to a Child about negative outcomes of a storm, we all, ALL need comfort from our fellow humans right now. Just as we would not want our Mom to be overly anxious about a situation, think of your friends and neighbors who are anxious also!
. We want to help the people we love, and hopefully we want to help our fellow man who we don’t even know. I am going to work on this, and I already know it helps, because people who cared for me when I was incapacitated did it for me. And I made it thru to better days.
. I hope you are doing well, that you can see the sky today, wherever you are. One thing that helps me so much is prayer because I know God is close to me when I pray to him in his Son, Jesus name. Reading the Bible books of Psalms and brings me peace, and talking on the phone to others about God’s promises soon to be fulfilled. If I can just smile at someone, it lifts my mood and hopefully theirs as well. I send out my warm hugs and smiles to all of you.
I have been spinning my wheels today, trying for hours to get my blogs here on WordPress all straightened out. It is very difficult to keep settings and numbers straight in my head since I sustained that TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury) in a fall in 2013. Along with all the other physical and Mental challenges I have, I just did not want to accept the fact that I have more struggles now. 0
It is amazing, however, that the life I have now with Jehovah helping me, no matter what the challenges may be, I am more content inside than ever before in my life! I used to wish I was younger, but when I look back the only real times of loving family memories are ones that I have created in my imagination. I had buried myself under so many layers of fantasy, that I believed I was happy in the World. Happy doing drugs, happy smoking stinking cigarettes. Happy letting people use me. Beautiful in my filth.
But I cried every single day, I hated the way I looked, I never felt safe, I was always jealous and insecure…I wanted to die most of the time. But I was young and pretty, right? No, I was tired and sick and overly made up, and either starving cause I was doing speed or puking cause I thought I ate too much… So beautiful… Did you ever see a stung out 20 year old who has been awake for a week so wired that she can only drink beer to try to come down. Make up all smeared and clothes stinking from sweat and alcohol and cigarettes, in skiiiinnnn tight jeans that leave red imprints on her skin, and her hair all stringy? No, you never did?
Believe me, you don’t want to. Nothing very attractive to see there. The eyes were the worst , though. I had dead eyes. No light, no twinkle, no shine of good health and vitality. No glow of clean living on my skin. And fear was my constant companion, though he took many forms. Fear of Judgement, fear of running out of drugs or drink, running out of love, running out of gas, losing jobs, fear of having no money for bills, for food, for gas. fear of not being able to explain where I was , what I was doing, who I was with. I feel a knot forming in my gut now, as my fingers fly over the keyboard, like the dogs are behind me now, panting, jaws dripping teeth glistening, necks straining, moving in for the kill…
STOP! STOP THE MERRY GO ROUND!
I breath a deep sigh as I write this, and I feel cool rain on my skin, a cool breeze wraps around me and the wretched image disappears. Like a steaming apparition, fading away into the night. No more to chain me down, no more to lure me into dense darkness with promises of belonging, promises of fame, promises of beauty. No, I have seen the errors of my past and I have
REPENTED, TURNED AROUND, HAD MY SINS BLOTTED OUT SO THAT THE HEALING LIGHT of HIS LOVE has HEALED ME…
For the longest time after I became a baptized servant of Jah, I hated my old self. I had to create a whole new persona for myself, strict and unflinching, upright and uptight. I never wanted to look the way I had in the past, it was as if I physically cut that person out of my life and off of me like a surgeon divides Siamese Twins. Just as I cut out my ex husband who hurt me so bad, and just as I cut all my old “friends” out of my life, I also cut myself off from the music I listened to, the tv shows I watched, the clothes I wore, and the books I read.
Was this necessary? Did I have to be so stern, so strict? Yes, at that time I did. The break from my past had to be as sure and swift as beheading a chicken with a hatchet. Like Jesus said, “If your right eye makes you stumble, tear it out! for it is better for you to enter the Kingdom of God with one eye then to be pitched into fiery Gehenna…”
This had to be the way for me, I was so determined to show Jehovah that I want to make Him happy, that I never, never wanted to go back to the way I was. And that is as it should be. But in my zeal, I was actually running away from myself. And I know that Jehovah does not hate me, but I hated that me. I hated her, and I blamed her for my “fall from grace”. That person, that Me was evil, she was bad, rotten to the core. I never wanted to look at her or acknowledge her ever again. I spent the first ten years as a Witness trying to figure out who I was now, how should I look, act, speak, dress. And here was a big problem: How Should I Feel?
Blue Beach Day
a rainy day…missing you.
seeking some sanity
seems like an eternity ago, when my hair was long, and I still felt pretty. This is before all the accidents, surgeries and injuries and before Mom died.
Any time I had bad thoughts I shut them down and cast them, out like throwing out the trash. But the self loathing would not go away, and I could not forgive myself for them. Even though I asked my true friends how they felt, and how they thought, and I tried very, very hard to mimic them, I felt cursed to always be bad. I even told people I felt like Pig Pen on Charlie Brown, carrying all the bad around me like a cloud of dirt. I blamed it all on that Me. And I was suffering. Jehovah did not want me to feel this way, and I know now that I never have to feel that way again.
How did the situation resolve, you ask? Let me explain…
I have been seeing a mental health professional ever since I quit using drugs and alcohol. The reason I began to was that I was still VERY depressed after being clean for a year and when I sought help they diagnosed me as Bipolar. (more about that another day…) On a therapy day, not long ago (maybe six months) Dave , my therapist noticed my loathing for the Me of the past. He was very intuitive and suggested a type of play acting. I had no idea what was about to happen. He placed the other chair in the room across from me, and had me turn my chair to face it. As I sat looking at the empty chair he asked me to visualize my old self.
“What does she look like?”, he asked.
“Well, she’s kind of pretty,” I saidM, “she’s got long dark hair, and a bunch of earrings, and tattoos.”
“What is she feeling?”, he asked quietly.
” I think she is very sad,” I repli ed, continuing,”She has the saddest eyes and I think she wants to die.”
“Tell her what you told me, Susan. That you hate her..”
“No! I don’t want her to know I said that!” I had tears running down my face…
” Well, what do you want to tell her?” he gently nodded at the empty chair.
As I sat there seeing old Me as clearly as I see this tablet, I began to talk to myself…
” hey there, don’t cry… You will be ok… I know you are scared right now, but God loves
you… I…I love you… poor girl.” With the tears just pouring down my face, he helped me to realize that old Me wasn’t evil, or someone I had to hate or shun… I did not have to cut myself in half anymore. I was seeing myself in a new light, as I would look on any other sick and sad individual who was beaten up and trodden down by Satan’s system of things.
This therapy tool had a profound and lasting effect on me, and I still can use it when I lose my focus and start berating myself for my sinful nature. Jehovah knows we are dust, as our Creator, he knows we want to be happy and He knows exactly what we need to live meaningful and purpose filled lives.
I am so grateful to be just me today, a whole person joyful serving God, under the rule of His Son, Jesus Christ, alongside millions of other faithful ones all around the world!
It has been such a struggle during this cold and gloomy weather to drag myself out of bed, to put my feet on the floor, to be motivated at all. I have in my mind always that I should be helping other people to come to know Jehovah, to help them see His great love for them. That I pray daily for these things is some comfort, but this huge burden of immobility just crushes me down and makes me feel unworthy, and lazy.,
Over and over I have been reminded that Satan uses this as a tactic, that discouragement can distance us and keep us stuck in the mire of self hate, the sediment of low self esteem and depression. Recently at my meeting for worship
one day soon!
we went over the fact that those feelings can be overcome by considering the ransom of Jesus Christ, and by earnest prayer for soundness of mind, which is promised to God’s faithful ones.
It is very easy for me to not take the steps I need to take, but then the way to death is a wide and spacious road the Bible tells us, while the road to life is a narrow and cramped one. I must struggle thru the weeds and brambles on this hard and narrow road, not fall prey to the worldly wolves and lies that are strewn about like stumbling blocks. Keeping my eyes fastened on the light I see before me at the head of the path I will throw off these burdens and keep climbing.
Physically I may be weighed down, and my mind and body are full of sin and imperfection, and my breaths come more shallow and labored than ever before. But just like the Bible says at 2 Corinthians 4:16-18,” Therefore, we do not give up, but even if the man outside is wasting away, certainly the man we are inside is being renewed from day to day.(17) For though the tribulation is momentary and light, it works out for us a glory that is of more and more surpassing greatness and is everlasting,(18) while we keep our eyes, not on the things seen, but on the things unseen. For the things seen are temporary, but the things unseen are everlasting.”
one day soon!
He Love Us!
looking west at sunset
I hope no one else suffers from the disquieting thoughts that I do, recurring images of the life I once lived, that come unbidden to frighten and distract me. But these I know, and I want others’ to know, will one day vanish forever, and will NEVER AGAIN poison our lives. We will be free from all the flashbacks, all the debris, all the residual effects our current circumstances inflict on us. I believe this, I know and have faith in this fact this because God has promised it to me, and to all who serve Him .
I want to read it now, so I will write it down here:
Revelation 21:3-5 With that I heard a loud voice from the throne say: “Look! The tent of God is with mankind, and he will reside with them, and they will be his people. And God himself will be with them. (4) And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. The former things have passed away”.(5)And the One seated on the throne said, “Look! I am making all things new”. Also he says, “Write, for these words are faithful and true.”
What incredibly beautiful words. What a certain promise.
LOVE ONE ANOTHER FROM THE HEART. LOVE JEHOVAH OUR GOD WITH YOUR WHOLE HEART, MIND, SOUL AND STRENGTH. TAKE IN ACCURATE KNOWLEDGE OF OUR GOD, AND PUT FAITH IN HIS SON JESUS CHRIST. DEDICATE YOURSELF TO JEHOVAH, AND SYMBOLIZE YOUR DEDICATION BY FULL IMMERSION BAPTISM. HELP OTHERS TO LEARN THE TRUTH OF JEHOVAH’S LOVING KINDNESS, AND HIS UNIVERSAL SOVEREIGNTY, AND UNDERSTAND AND SHARE WITH OTHERS HIS PROMISES OF RELIEF FROM PAIN, DEATH, SORROW AND TEARS. BELIEVE IN HIS PROMISE OF AN EARTHLY PARADISE, AND LIFE ETERNAL. WE HAVE SO MANY BLESSINGS TO PRAISE HIM FOR. PRAISE HIM FOR BEING WHO HE IS, ALMIGHTY GOD, CREATOR OF ALL, AND THE SUPREME SOURCE OF ALL GOODNESS AND LIGHT. PRAY TO JEHOVAH THROUGH JESUS CHRIST AND JOIN ME ON THE ROAD TO LIFE. “TRUST IN JEHOVAH AND DO GOOD”
And you said GLUE? AS IN SUPER GLUE? AND CONSTRUCTION GLUE?
Uh, yea. What’s the big deal? I use my mask all the ti…oh. OH…OH, now I understand. I got up sicker today, and wheezing, and groggy, with a blazing headache… And I didn’t put my respirator on when I sprayed that wall hanging last night… it was just going to be a couple seconds…the mask was inside…just a couple steps away,, but I was LAZY. AND FOOLISH. AND NOW MY LUNGS ARE SCREAMING. only I can’t hear them cause I CANT BREATHE!!!!
I made it to my standing Doc Appointment 5 minutes after I got out of bed. I mean, my hair already sticks up, but I seriously looked like Einstein.
seeking some sanity
I told her I thought maybe I had Pneumonia, pressure in my head, chest, headache, weary etc… And being the Real Physician she is (i don’t know why I said “Real”, too much news) she listened to my lungs.
Wow. I did not need a stethescope…The Rice Krispie Trio was playing a tune in my lungs. Holy smoker, who quit 20 years ago! No, I thought, not me!
Which is a rediculous thought, I have known for a couple years now that my lungs are failing. How did I know this? Well, it seems that I used CONSTRUCTION ADHESIVES to build an assemblage a few years ago… The year I had a Pulmonary Embolism from laying around too much after the 3 surgeries I had, the year I fell 4 times due to vertigo..etc etc… Oh . here is te health litany.. STOP.
The point is that I ALREADY have the knowledge of what NOT TO DO if I want to stay healthy. I already have KNOWLEDGE that I damaged my lungs and body severely with my lifestyle in the past, and I KNOW what to do to help myself.
The REALLY SAD THING is that I lost my Burning Desire to be my best me, my healthy me, the BEST Version of myself that I can give to my Creator in Thanks.
I lost my FOCUS, and I let the bad ways back in for a minute, the way of shortcuts, laziness, seeking material weaBEAUTIFULlth, and I cheated myself of some breaths of life again. And I didn’t even light a match…
When the Doc said she would let me try to change some of my test numbers without meds, I really let myself down, because I opted for the meds. I told her I just DID NOT HAVE IT IN ME TO MAKE THAT MUCH OF AN EFFORT RIGHT NOW.
I even felt sick as it was coming out of my head into my voice box…DONT HAVE IT IN ME…TOO MUCH EFFORT…why dont you just puke and fall over in it?
I felt shame, burning shame, not burning desire. That I did not feel I am worth the effort. That Jehovah created this wonderful human being of ME, and I “don’t have it in me to make that much effort right now? What an insult to my loving God, who sent His Beautiful, PERFECT and BELOVED SON, Jesus Christ to die for me. This same me that I couldn’t muster the will to TRY to save. Oh, for shame, susan.
I tried to backtrack as soon as it was uttered, claiming that I just feel so sick that everything is extra hard right now…I haven’t slept, you know…
NO! I WILL NOT LET MYSELF DOWN LIKE THIS.
Nor will I INSULT my GRAND CREATOR, SOVEREIGN of the UNIVERSE, JAH!!
I WILL BE ON FIRE WITH DESIRE starting THIS VERY MOMENT!!!
BREATHE, GIRL, BREATHE!!!
RUN WITH ALL YOUR MIGHT! WE MUST FINISH THIS RACE!!!! YEEHAW!
I have not been going out preaching, the God-given work I love. As one of Jehovah’s dedicated Witnesses, I have promised to tell my fellow man about “the good news from God”. I must help them learn to take in accurate knowledge from the Bible, to put faith in the ransom sacrifice of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins, to repent from past mistakes. Then, when they are ready, I can be there when they are baptized and dedicated to serving Jehovah, right alongside the rest of us.
Many people who are opposed to Jehovah’s Witnessed don’t know why we go door to door, or out in the ministry as we call it. They wonder why we would do something so annoying as bothering people at their homes. There actually is a very good reason to do this, one that is designed to help even the people who don’t like us:
We do it out of Love. Love for Jehovah God, and love for our fellow man.
God’s inspired Word, The Bible, explains when it says, at the book of Matthew 22:37,38,
“He said to him:”You must love Jehovah your God with your whole heart and with your whole soul and with your whole mind.” This is the greatest and first commandment.”
( If I love God this way, then I will obey Him, to make him happy.) Then the Scriptures go on to say, in Matthew 22:39,
” The second, like it, is this: “You must love your neighbor as yourself.”
( Here I believe that I must love my fellow man as my own brother, and so doing, I must do what ever I can to help him, to save his life. Because I love Jehovah, I will try to save even people who hate me, because God does not want anyone to be destroyed. So, just as I would throw my neighbor a life preserver if he were drowning-I will knock on his door and give him the life saving message( of God’s means of salvation from a dying world) that God has commanded me to give.)
This answers people who just think that J.W.’s are crazy to go door to door, that we are just there to aggravate them. We come to do a life saving work, out of love. And our door to door preaching was even commanded by Jesus, who gave us an example to follow. The Bible says, at Matthew 28:19,20,
“Go, therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy spirit, teaching them to observe all the things I have commanded you.”
( If Jesus commanded me to go out and make disciples, then I must teach others to go out and do the same thing, and they will teach their students,etc., etc….)
And if someone I talk to still thinks I could just put a sign out, the Bible, God’s inspired Book of directions, describes the disciples of Jesus Christ doing this witnessing work centuries ago. In the Bible book of Acts, chapter 20, verse 20, we read,
“…while I did not hold back from telling you any of the things that were profitable nor from teaching you publicly and from house to house. But I thoroughly bore witness both to Jews and to Greeks about repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus.”
Also, this method of preaching is again mentioned in Acts 5:42, where the apostle Paul writes under inspiration,
” And every day in the temple and from house to house they continued without letup teaching and declaring the good news about the Christ, Jesus.”
Today, Jehovah’s Witnesses have other avenues of preaching available, for instance, a handicapped person like myself can write letters or call people locally. I have even found the courage to witness to my neighbor’s right here, on my own blog. All I know is that I love Jehovah, and I love you all out there, too.
It would be wonderful if I could meet you someday in Paradise, and find out that you came to know Jehovah after you read some lady’s blog. But even if I never know someone that I preach to, I do know that Jehovah’s will shall be done. That one day wars will cease, and wickedness will not be found anymore. Dead ones will rise from their graves and live again with their families, on an Earth that is no longer dying or polluted. Animals of all kinds will lose their fear of mankind and each other, and a child will be able to pet a lion and come to no harm. No one will ever have to feel pangs of hunger, of cry out of loneliness or fear, or pain.
Children won’t die of cancer anymore, neither will anyone die in war. Food will grow, water will be drinkable, love will flourish.
We will know what true happiness is, for the first time.
I hope we are there together. May you find peace, love and rest from your weary road, my neighbor…