Saturday, April 23, 2016

I Work and He Works

Summary: Anger made disrespect even worse. I would try to keep it in check, fail, and grow depressed. Quite trying, and another kind of depression joined. Last year's issues -- anger, respect, 'trying' depression, 'not-trying' depression

Now what? In my anger post, I had written, "But just having His Spirit in me doesn't bust it. I have to depend on Him and activate God in me..." How do I depend on Him and activate His Spirit in me?

I compiled a list of 70+ things that I (would) think when I felt the anger rising. Unfortunately, these thoughts often did not help. I don't know why exactly. Maybe I still felt in control, still wanted my way (automatic and easiest) versus submitting to God and His ways, just wanted the Spirit to do the work, was rebelling against being told what to do... Maybe it is just really tough to learn new ways, new habits. I knew the thought but doing it just wasn't happening, whether I tried or not. 

It used to happen like this: situation --> anger --> thought --> ahhh, can't do it! = fail 

There was no way I could implement these thoughts, no matter how good or biblical they are.

So, as I continued to feel like things were spiraling out of control and grew more desperate than ever before, I had lost all reliance on myself and my ability. No confidence in myself at all. I only messed things (people, relationships, moments) up. I was utterly dependent on Him. Finally, I was right where He wanted me -- at the end of my rope and bottom of the pit -- helpless, dependent, and desperate.

Now, when I feel the anger rising, I cry out to Him, "I know full well I cannot handle this. If I try to control myself or do a helpful hint, I'll fail. I've tried and given it all I got. And, I still can't. But I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that You can." Then I think a thought, and relying completely on His Spirit to empower me, it works! So, I think my thought but do not believe in my ability to carry it out, and the Spirit enables me to do it. 
...continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. ~ Philippians 2:12-13
I work and He works. My work is not to try or just rely. But both. I must take the first step (the step of faith and obedience), and trust Him to walk me through it. Like Peter stepping out of the boat.

It's like this now: situation --> anger --> plea for help --> thought --> help

It doesn't seem that much different; it's all about recognizing the source for the strength.

I still botch things sometimes, trying to rely on my flesh to accomplish what I want. Ricky calls these moments blips in the new norm.

I will try to post my helpful hints list next week. 

[I'm working on uprooting my anger, so there should be posts about that later this year. At least, the outward effects of my anger are much less and better now. Of course, I want the roots to be removed, too.]

Monday, April 18, 2016

Training with Ten {link}

No time to write today or over the weekend, unfortunately. Next weekend...

Anyway, here's another's post that nicely draws the same conclusion as I did in Look Up, Not In ;)

Friday, April 15, 2016

Enjoying It All

  • Last week -- the kids went to art class. Helpers/friends came. Teresa stayed for the week. We went to hang out with some friends and let our kids play one evening. We finished taxes (this was the first year I did a lot of it alone, which was yucky). I had a birthday and got two bouquets of flowers (from Aolani and my parents). We took three days off of school as a result. We played games and did art & crafts. My sweet parents visited to celebrate with us! They came laden with gifts, worked hard, and got to play with the munchkins! We went to the accessible park, rode bikes, flea market, painted nails, games, watched the Masters' (golf), pizza/movie night, church, restaurant, and planted green bell peppers in our Earthboxes :)

A wheelchair swing

Aolani loves the zipline!

Right now, Micaiah prefers the scooter to the bike and the swing to the the zipline (Aolani is the opposite for both).
  • Verse to memorize this week: 2 Corinthians 3:16-17  But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Messed-up, Flawed, Not-good-enough People

Still pondering and working on my summary post I've been mentioning. In the meantime, here's a super-great quote:
"It’s still messy and ugly and hard. 
But in the midst of this struggle, I have never been more acutely aware of my own need for grace, nor more comforted by the realization that God uses our imperfection to do His best work. 
In fact, if there is one thing the Bible makes abundantly clear, again and again, it is that God uses the most messed-up, flawed, not-good-enough people to do His will again and again, because messed-up, flawed, not-good-enough people are all that he has to choose from. 
There are very few Hollywood endings to be found; on the contrary, there is only story upon story of people who failed, yet God somehow used them anyway."

~ Ruth Soukup

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Adding Up

  •  Last week was pretty normal -- our friend visited all week, Ricky took the kids out to visit friends for a cultural experience, pizza/movie night, church, small group...
  • Aolani lost her other front tooth, and she's now lost four. We're giving a dollar in exchange for a tooth.  
Trying to break an egg by squeezing its ends (pretty impossible; we all tried!)
Taught Aolani to play Mexican Train Dominoes
Her house
Front toothless
    Aolani made a book (her own idea)
  • School verse: Matthew 5:14, 16 Y -- You are the light of the world… Let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.
  • Verse to memorize this week: 2 Corinthians 3:15  Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts.

Monday, April 4, 2016

To Try or Not Try?

I was going to write a nice tie-it-all-in piece, but I'm going to add one more thing and write the cohesive post next week, I hope ;)

More (on) depression. Just what we want! ;)

Not only did I battle the depression I wrote about last week last year -- the striving and failing kind. [Where, no matter how hard I tried, I would botch things and feel like a failure as a wife, a mother, a friend, and a Christian. I may fail at being all my roles, but I shouldn't focus on being anything, except being in Christ. He is the One I ought to focus on, not myself and how I measure up. Just look to and fix my eyes/energies on Him and trust all else to follow.]

But, I also got to battle a new kind of depression. Driven by the first kind and a let go and let God attitude (applied wrongly, mind you). "If I only try and fail, then stop trying and let His Spirit do the work through me." Sounds good, but it led me to an even greater depression. I stopped trying, and I ended up worse -- miserable, downtrodden, consumed, helpless, and (above all) I felt powerless and desperate.


Trying, didn't work.
Not trying, didn't work.

The following verses were the constant cry of my heart!
For troubles without number surround me; my sins have overtaken me, and I cannot see. They are more than the hairs of my head, and my heart fails within me. Be pleased to save me, Lord; come quickly, Lord, to help me. ~ Psalm 40:12-13 be continued

Friday, April 1, 2016


  • Last week was mostly normal. Ricky had Good Friday off. So, we ate an early dinner and got to attend a church service that evening. We've been out-of-town for this weekend every year we've lived here until now. We all painted together on Saturday, which was the kids first time painting with Daddy (final products picture below). Ricky took Aolani with him when he gave blood because she really wanted to watch (and she thought it was so cool ;) ). Our cherished friend came to visit on Resurrection Day (she'll be here for week or so). We did our science experiment for the week on Resurrection Day, which the kids always enjoy!
  • The kids and I have been listening to the Gospels (audio) during breakfast during the week, and we are all really enjoying it!
  • Measurements: Aolani -- 44 lbs weight and 45.5" height; Micaiah -- 36 lbs weight and 40.5" height
  • Micaiah's mishaps: "Why is Tripp (a friend) named TRIP, like HIT or SLAP?"; we watched a short clip of a wombat one morning to show the kids a wombat, and tonight he told us that he wanted to see a wombat attacking someone! [I cracked up; one of those little boy things that you would never hear a 4-yo girl say :)]
Aolani loves to do hair!
Our egg-patterned mosaics
  • School verse is the same as last week: Matthew 18:3 X -- Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
  • Verse to memorize this week: 2 Corinthians 3:14 But their minds were made dull, for to this day the same veil remains when the old covenant is read. It has not been removed, because only in Christ is it taken away.