Sunday, October 30, 2011

God’s Ways Aren’t Our Ways

Do you ever think about all those prayers you prayed that were totally off base, the ones where you prayed answers instead of questions and those that our Lord has the graciousness to say a resounding NO to? I am thanking Him once again today that His ways aren’t my ways and that He can and has told this daughter NO.

Awhile back He whispered to my heart saying:
Child, my ways are not your ways so they don't always appeal to your logic. 
However, you can walk there-in if you continue to yield.  Quiet your SELF and the Holy Spirit will become more audible all the time.  I love you with a never ending, eternal love. Rejoice in me. Selah.

In Exodus 33:13 we learn  “If you are pleased with me, teach me your ways so I may know you and continue to find favor with you. Remember that this nation is your people." (NIV)

Deuteronomy 8:6 says “Observe the commands of the LORD your God, walking in his ways and revering him.” (NIV)

 A bit farther on in Deuteronomy 10:12 [ Fear the LORD ] “And now, O Israel, what does the LORD your God ask of you but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all his ways, to love him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul…..” (NIV)

Prayer: Teach me Your ways, Oh, Lord, I know that some of my ways are still “crooked” and I want to walk straight paths after You!  AMEN

(C) Marijo Phelps all rights reserved. Use with with proper credits.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Stormy Blue

Stormy Blue and Katy Dancer as kittens

Our beautiful blue eyed boy quit eating a couple days ago. this has happened before and usually the expulsion of a nasty hair ball fixes him right up and life goes on. This time, however, it was followed by his meowing and going to the water bowl, sticking his head inside and then not drinking more that a few sips. He was not going to the litter to either. No, he wasn't going anywhere else.

Our Stormy has had kidney troubles for a couple of years and perhaps we should be glad he was chasing around the house last week with the other cats and jumping on the bed even with his arthritic hip, where Katy had dumped a heavy wooden ladder on him in his kittenhood. 

I wasn't glad as we begin to observe more and more signs of renal (kidney) failure. This cat, above all others, is not a "let's go ride-y in the truck" cat. One trip he managed to get so worked up he had diarrhea twice and got his blood sugar up to 250 riding into the vet and he doesn't have blood sugar problems.

We determined that unless he was suffering and needed to have help with that we would keep him at home and as comfortable as possible. I know that within 72 hours of no water the end would come. His little sister went two years ago with both Mick and me at her side (one on each crying our eyes out) and she had no distress until the last 10 minutes.

Stormy Blue - the greatest cat rescue story we have ever had. He was dumped at the vet in a snowstorm with his two sisters and almost frozen when the vet found him on Monday morning. This kitten came home with us to claw his way up the bathroom wall and hang in the corner by his front paws - terrified. He then retreated to the linen closet where he stayed 2 1/2 weeks. He wouldn't come out when we were around. He would eventually play with us but we had to have the swizzle stick poked through a roll of toilet paper so our hands were not near the little guy.

To say he has come a long way would be a total understatement. He now sits up on his hind legs and begs for food like a dog, he purrs whenever anyone comes to pet him, he comes when you call his name and even became a lap cat somewhere around 8 years of age.

His fur is the most silky and his blue eyes still astound us. He is the kitty who takes any of our "new arrivals" under his paw and loves on them, after an initial hiss or two.

Where do cats go when they die? In the Bible it speaks of a time when the lion lays down with the lamb. I am hoping that there will be a time when the house cat will lay down with a mouse and that I will be there to see it. Perhaps all of our house cats, who have gone on before us, will volunteer to be there too.

Today I am praying that Stormy will go quickly and without suffering. Mick and I will be suffering enough for this household and my tears are beginning to flow just writing this now. Ahhhh, Stormy, how did those 15 years go so very fast?

I think the thing which bothers me most is to know that one day it will be Mick or me going, leaving the other behind unless the Lord comes back and snatches us both away first. (Rapture of the church - could be much closer than we think!)

PS Stormy left us crying October 28th at 9:04 PM. He had only about a minute and a half where he was unable to breathe and passed quickly. We have been crying ever since. He was a GOOD kitty!

(C) Marijo Phelps - all rights reserved - use giving proper credit only.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Encouraging You in Jesus

Big Bear on the left in the wagon

Looking at the word “encourage” we see the word courage. Does it mean to give courage?  The thesaurus says to give confidence, hearten, cheer, support, persuade, push and promote among other things. I think to give courage would fit right in here too. Jesus definitely gives me courage, to hope, to trust, to believe, though I haven’t yet obtained and to hang on tightly to the promises in His Word.

Today He is once again sharing His thoughts with us in that still, small voice:

Child, I’d like to speak to more than your heart. We need times to listen together - times for you to be still and KNOW that I AM God. I LOVE you. Really (selah) pause and think calmly about that.

Still amazed after all these years that He loves me, He knows me lumps, bumps, flaws, missing parts and He loves me all the more. Is it like looking at my old teddy bear, the one with the button eyes and faded blue fur, the bear of my infancy? Big Bear still has a place of honor in my home. He has gone from close childhood companion to a perch high in the kitchen in a little red wagon. Big Bear looks out over the most precious room in the house, my kitchen, and surveys all. The bear of my childhood would not win any beauty bear contests but he doesn’t need to as he has won my heart long, long ago. Yes, I love Big Bear maybe because of his lumps, bumps and flaws. He is unique to me and we have traveled far together.

Maybe that is how God sees me. Maybe all those things which make me uniquely me and completely His are what endear me to Jesus. I only know that He cares oh, so much for me and for you, way beyond our material value, looking straight into the heart of us. He values who we are because He made us, planned for us and knew our each and every thought yet He loves us still. And that is His unconditional love. Will you allow Him to draw you close? Will you allow Him to make you His child? His forgiveness is there for the asking. He is nothing less that God wanting to set the captive free. Believe me, you have never known a freedom or love like His.

Prayer: Ah, Lord God, please help us to slow down, to walk liberated in all the light we have. Help us to get a picture, glimpse by glimpse of your most incredible love for us. Help us to listen and ask and walk upright in You. Thank You for your most inexplicable love that wants to spend time with me. Thank You most of all for who You are and what you did and continue to do. AMEN

and that you may love the LORD your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the LORD is your life, and he will give you many years in the land he swore to give to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. (NIV)

In Psalm 46:10 we are encouraged, given courage to be still and know that He is God. It also states that  
God will be exalted above the nations and above the earth.
In John 16:27 Jesus is speaking saying “No, the Father himself loves you because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God.”

I wonder at the special, individual place each one of us has in the heart of God. I think there are really no words to explain that place which is most wonderful to experience more and more as we walk with Him. Give Him your hand. Give Him your heart. Walk with Him today.

 (C) Marijo Phelps all rights reserved. Use with proper credits.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Breast Surgery Update

I saw my 2 surgeons today and both were very pleased with the progress I am making with healing. The Plastic surgeon pulled some sutures that I didn't know were having to come out and I survived my first day in a bra. Mick is getting a cold and I cancelled riding with him tomorrow (coming blizzard) as he has too many appts for his own work schedule already. Will catch the oncologist and massage therapist next week. THANKS for all your prayers.God is SO good!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

And By His Stripes We Are Healed

Many of us have read the physician’s account of what happened during the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. It was something even this RN could not get clinical about and then to think He did that just for you and for me. To say that sacrifice “boggles the mind” would not begin to touch the subject.
Are there things in your past that are raw and hurting like they happened today? Do you suffer from something that traumatized your emotions, your physical self or your family?

The Lord Jesus can gently take you by the hand and bring forth a healing process that will set you free. How can I say this with certainty? I know from personal experience as there were shattered parts of my life that the Lord Jesus Christ has made whole. Those pieces of my life that were not even recognizable as anything but shattered pieces. The “me” which came out of those pieces walking hand-in-hand with Jesus is more whole and complete than I had been to start with before the fragmentation. I have also experienced physical healing on occasions. My doctor has the before photos on my chart and I am living proof of the “after”. HE is able.

But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed.

Several years ago I sat with notebook in hand and wrote the following that I felt He was placing on my heart:

Oh, my daughter, there is so much for you to learn. Healing flows not undimmed by human tears, where freedom is found. Allow Jesus access. His healing balm flows through you.

Daughter there are others who need my touch where you are. I will bring them to you and as you lift me up they shall know deliverance and health in my name.See my life flow freely forth, beauty out of ashes. Your scars can heal others as I have healed you. Don't cover them up (scars) share in love. 

In 2Corinthians 1:4 the Bible is speaking of Jesus saying that He comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

Although that particular scripture is a tongue twister it is full of promise and meaning. I have seen His faithfulness to that scripture in my own life over and over.

In James 5:16 we are encouraged to confess our trespasses to one another, to pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.
That is generic for mankind and also applies to us gals.

In 1 Corinthians 14:3 the gift or prophesy is mentioned “But he who prophesies speaks edification and exhortation and comfort to men.” (NKJV)

Romans 15:5 exhorts us to be look at God who is the God of patience and comfort that He might grant you to be like-minded towards one another, according to Christ Jesus.

All of that to say God will help us have patience and comfort each other.

In 2 Timothy 1:6 we are reminded along with Timothy to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of hands. 

We have all been given gifts from God and they are to be used to encourage and reach out to others. We are His hands and arms here on earth until He comes back. What an awesome responsibility and honor!

In Isaiah 61:3 is a verse that several songs have been based upon. “To console those who mourn in Zion, To give them beauty for ashes, The oil of joy for mourning, The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; That they may be called trees of righteousness, The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified." (NKJV)

God is so faithful. He can and does heal today. All we need to do is ask. All we need to do is allow Him to use us to reach out to others. Can you let Him use you to be an instrument of His peace?

Prayer: Dear Father, please help us to reach out in your name. Help us to share the comfort with which You comforted us. Help us to be an unclogged vessel for your use daily, in our Jerusalem, in the most wonderful name of Jesus we ask this, AMEN.

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(C) Marijo Phelps all rights reserved. Use with proper credits.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Psychics, Spiritualists, Witchcraft and the Owner’s Manual

Psychics, Spiritualists, Witchcraft and the Owner’s Manual

Mel: Beth certainly has become a good friend, I’m so glad that our kids are in school together and we have time to talk once in awhile. She seems to have some strange ideas about life sometimes but also has much peace…… hum, she is out working in her iris garden, maybe we will have time for coffee today. What in the world is going on with that truck of hers?

“Bethany, what is your new Tundra doing in the driveway with hay sticking out of the extended cab and the bed? I think I even saw some mice running around in the hay….”

“Well, that Toyota owner’s manual wanted me to change the oil – a nasty job – and use gasoline in the truck. I read that gasoline can cause fires and make a big mess. You know our neighbor, John Jamison? He raises quarter horses and has written a wonderful book about them and their care. I got his book and decided to try his suggestions on the Tundra.”

“Beth, your Tundra is not a quarter horse. Tell me this doesn’t have something to do with our conversation last week about owner’s manuals?” Melissa walked slowly around the pick-up truck shaking her head. “There ARE mice in there on your new leather seats!”

“Mel, the enemy of your life can come as an angel of light. Before there can be a counterfeit there has to be an original. Does it make sense that the one who put this truck together might have the best ideas for its care and maintenance? You were telling me about consulting a psychic for a kick and that it was no big deal. Well, I tossed the Toyota owner’s manual and am using John’s book to “feed and care for” the Tundra. Never mind that John didn’t create the Tundra and is writing a book about horses. I don’t LIKE the Toyota manual and want to do this my way.”

“I can’t believe you are letting MICE in your new truck – they could ruin the seats and chew the wiring”

“I love you, my dear friend and think this makes a good visual….who is your owner, Mel, who made you? Does it make sense to seek the advice of a psychic or spiritualist or go to a palm reader for help? Besides there is only one mediator between man and God and that’s Jesus. Let’s go into the house for coffee while the kids are in school.”

Mel: I remember the talk we had about electricity. You can’t see if but that doesn’t keep you from turning on the switch and expecting the lights to come on. Our lives would be pretty miserable without electricity. Yes, used incorrectly it can kill. And we talked about power sources and being plugged in to the right one. Hum, where IS Beth going with this one?

“Coffee sounds good, do you have any of that amaretto creamer? Beth, I am in control of my life and there are things that I, well, like to pick and choose and just see how that goes, know what I mean?”

Beth: She didn’t know me years ago – how can I communicate that I know all too well what she means. Actions have consequences and some of them are terrible to you and those you love. We have all broken God’s heart and done things which have badly hurt ourselves and those we love. He has written a wonderful “owner’s manual” for us with a bunch of promises in it. Man, they are sort of like gift certificates made out to us – ready to use. He also has parameters to keep us safe and healthy. It isn’t like he is a great cosmic kill joy in the sky – He loves us and knows what makes us tick and what will destroy us too. That’s one reason why He inspired the writing of His “owner’s manual”.

“Mel, I do know what you mean. Do you know that years ago I was into astrology, tarot cards and transcendental meditation? I found out that by doing some of these things I was opening the door to entities I had no idea about.”

“Like what?”

“Well, like electricity, there are other things that we can’t see…..”

“OK, I could agree with that but what are you saying, Beth?”

 “There really is an unseen part of our life, our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. There are some things that we should not be messing with and things that we do that invite unwanted involvement….”

“Now don’t go getting all spooky with me, Beth!”

“Mel, we are back to that owner’s manual again. God loves us, he wired us and made our personalities and, believe it or not, He has a purpose for us being here. SO does it make sense that He might have a few insights into how we should go about that perfect plan of His?”

“OK, I will give you that but it sounds so, so restrictive.”

“When your Josh was a toddler did he ever run towards the street when a car was coming?”

“Oh, Beth, I can still remember one time in particular when I scooped him into my arms just in time. He was looking back over his shoulder giggling and running away from me thinking it was a big game. He had no idea that car was coming straight towards him.” Mel was getting tense just thinking about how close of a call that was.

“Can you picture us as the toddlers and Jesus as our loving God scooping us up into His arms just in time?” Beth reached over to gently touch her friend’s arm.

Several days later:

Ding dong. “Hey, Beth, what happened to the Tundra, not a mouse house anymore?”Mel grinned as she opened the door to go into the house.

“Hey, come in – coffee’s on and the amaretto creamer is out on the countertop, good to see you! How did Josh do in the soccer game Friday, Melissa?”

“Well ,he’s had better nights but he did make one goal”

“It is so exciting to see those guys play, isn’t it? Micah’s team lost but they are getting better each game.”

“Beth, I have been thinking about what you said about power sources, you know, where we get our power from. It reminded me of when we were in Germany and I tried to use my hair dryer. Even with the supposedly right converter, what a mess that was….I was plugged into a power source but it sure wasn’t the right one.”

“Interesting, Mel, guess that brings us right back to what we were talking about regarding the Owner’s Manual….”

“Yeah, and I am beginning to see why it would be not really very smart to go to a psychic or card reader to find out about your future. If God created me and put all my interesting parts together and has a plan…. Why would I want to go to someone I don’t even know for advice about my life? I was doing a bit of reading in your Owner’s Manual and found something that fits here, I think…. It is in Isaiah 8:19-22 (New International Version “19 When men tell you to consult mediums and spiritualists, who whisper and mutter, should not a people inquire of their God? Why consult the dead on behalf of the living? 20 To the law and to the testimony! If they do not speak according to this word, they have no light of dawn. 21 Distressed and hungry, they will roam through the land; when they are famished, they will become enraged and, looking upward, will curse their king and their God. 22 Then they will look toward the earth and see only distress and darkness and fearful gloom, and they will be thrust into utter darkness.” I wrote it down because I wanted to ask if this is what you were talking about last week?

“Mel, that is a great passage for what we were discussing, I’m glad you wrote it down! God knows us so well, He also knows the unseen things we shouldn’t be dabbling with. Some things are not as they appear to be. This takes us back to the power source. Basically, what power source is behind some of the seemingly innocent things out there for us to pursue?”

“I was thinking about that too, what we talked about regarding electricity and not seeing it but it was there and could be wonderful and it could also kill us if we didn’t use it properly.  I have learned enough to know that besides the world we see and function in there is, well, a spiritual world. When we talked about satan coming like an angel of light….I was thinking about that.”

“What thoughts did you have?”

“Does that mean that he can appear as something or someone good, yet really be trying to pull us in with lies and deception or maybe that he appears to be something wonderful to drag us in?”

“I sure have found that to be true in several ways. Little things that just seem like games; tarot cards, Ouija boards, seeing a fortune teller, consulting a psychic – they can all seem like something to do at the fair or a party game but you can be opening the door to entities you never dreamed were there or were interested in you. They are very real and not what they are posing to be.”

“Do you think that is why I began having nightmares after going to that psychic? I just did it as a kick, for something to do with Zach when we were in New York City for the afternoon. I sure didn’t mean anything by it but those awful nightmares began right after that.”

“You might have a point there – would you like to pray about that now?”

“Do you think I could get a good night’s sleep again if we did pray, Beth?”

“Mel, there is so much to learn and Jesus wants us to be FREE. Have you asked Him to forgive you for the things you’ve done to break His heart and to be your savior and Lord?”

“Well, I thought that might be a direction I wanted to go but there were so many other things in life which seemed to be presenting “The Answer” – guess I have gone down a few rabbit trails since I was at the point of praying to ask God, Jesus, to be my savior. I know I have made kind of a huge mess of my life.”

“It isn’t something to be done without thought, Melissa. Jesus is fully God and fully man – he lived here among us and was sinless, that’s why he could pay the penalty that I owed and that you owed. Something about the wages of sin is death….”

“Yah, that’s one payday I wouldn’t mind missing….oh, Beth, my tears are like a faucet but they don’t make me clean. Besides God, I have hurt so many I love by my words and actions; things I have done that were just flat out wrong.”

“Mel, let’s talk to the Lord about all of this….”

The following week:

“Beth, how can I ask God to forgive me? I have broken His heart and those hearts of my family and friends – I guess that’s what sin is, right? Messing up and making bad choices and hurting everyone, even myself in the process…”

“Melissa, we have all been there – it is a matter of just talking to Jesus like we are talking right now. You don’t need an appointment – He is always ready and waiting to talk with you, you know. Just tell Him what is on your heart, those things you are sorry for and need forgiveness for and, well, talk to him like he was right here in the kitchen because He is….”

With a muffled sob Mel began to talk to God “Jesus, I have made a real mess of things – hurt my best friends and my marriage and I know I have broken your heart too with my choices. I shouldn’t have gone to people seeking advice when I didn’t even come to you. I have lied and called them “little white lies”, those lies were not true and lies just the same. I have maneuvered things and people to get my way and hurt others in the process. I have been nasty to people at work for the same reason because I wanted what I wanted no matter what. Please forgive me, Jesus? I want to be new from inside out and start putting you first…..”

“Wow, it is like a huge weight was just lifted off my shoulders Beth. I feel clean and how can I tell you? But, you already know don’t you?”

“Mel, do you know how long I have waited for this day? How I have prayed that God would make himself real to you and be your best friend?” Beth walked around the table and gave Mel a really long hug.

“I had no idea – I feel so calm and “feet on the floor” kind of  well, solidness AND I want to dance! And Beth, there are questions, SO many questions.”

“It’s good you live so close and that when we put our boys on the school bus we can have some time together, isn’t it?”

“Beth, how did you figure out which parts of the Bible you could take at face value and which parts were allegories or illustrations – boy, do I have questions that need answers.”

“I hear you, getting to know Jesus and the Bible are exciting – I can’t believe how many questions I still have but so many were initially answered just as I began to read. Things that never made sense before got clear and some scriptures seemed to just jump off the page for me.”

“Beth, thanks doesn’t begin to cover what I am sensing. And to think you had to let those mice get into your Toyota to make a point – you sure do know how I learn, don’t you? I have to run but can’t wait until our next coffee time together.”

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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Writing Winter’s White

Whispered words wrapping round
As slow snow whitely drifting down
Winsome winter-scape gauzy covering
Frosted trees with sunlight sparkling

Weeds transformed before my sight
First snow of winter, crystalline delight
Frosty pure, cleanly white
Piling the roads with fluffy might

Resident rabbit to petunias hops
Nibbling, gnawing, gobbling stops
As neighboring deer pauses to feed
On green grass now snow crusted weed

Mountain meadow talking to me
Alpine heights delightful to see
Fall came briefly and now must go,
Making way for first winter snow.

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(C) Marijo Phelps all rights reserved. Use with proper credits.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Cancer FREE!

My surgery biopsy came back and I am cancer free!!! Praising our glorious Lord and Savior - and thanking Him for "saving" me yet again!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Oh, Ye of Little Faith......Breast Cancer and Bras.....

Stormy and Hooney reminding me I am not in this alone...THANKS JESUS!

Doing much better today – even drove to the mail box (3 miles one way approx). Took a shower with no one standing by and made dinner, baking corn bread etc.

Am taking a leap here (but maybe a logical one as the Lord knows I “do words” and write and play with written communication all the time.) He laid it on my heart that “this is not unto death”. I have been cogitating and came up with “yah, but there is a lot of territory between whole and having breasts left and having a mastectomy”

You seen the pretty bras I ordered in my expected size to encourage me sit on the bed unwrapped because I am not washing them when I might have to send them back. Why would I have to send them back? If the surgery biopsy showed cancer and cancer outside the ducts then I would be a candidate for a mastectomy.

SO today it came to me (did I conger it up or was it the still, small voice? Am I unpackaging those bras and running to the washer? Nope, I am typing an e-mail to you my Teri-sounding board.)

“This is not unto death….” The unsaid part being not even death of a breast….so I am trying to make that flying leap that means I am still going to have both breasts and wear bras and not have a mutilating mastectomy.

I put my hand in Jesus’s hand this AM in the living room and took those two steps – walking after Him wherever He leads.

Don’t I just love waiting? Oh, oh, I think I am flunking Patience 101 – again…..

I “saw” the light coming down from heaven as I praised with uplifted hands into my fingertips and shining, glowing golden light across both breasts. At that time I had no idea that both were having surgery – they did though. I should grasp that “vision” and hang onto it like it is gold because it was and is. HE is able, when I am puny His strength is made perfect.

Would it be a leap of faith to put those bras in the washer or an act of presumption. Well, at least I have put 3 of them in for now….

Glad most of my blog readers are girls - would hate to subject guys to this!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Breast Cancer Through the Eyes of This Nurse

I took a really good look at my incision sites today. Maybe I shouldn’t have. Retired RN with only one patient (me) might not be good.

Ductal Cancer in Situ, two little grains of calcium overlaying cancer, my once rather large breasts are now much, much smaller and so swollen they look like tiny, overblown balloons. I have never seen balloons which were bruised, holding surgical glue and steri-strips before.

This really hurts more looking at the site of the attack. Yes, I was invaded by cancer and then again by two well known surgeons in their effort to make me healthy and somewhat “normal” again. I am definitely not the “me” who has looked back from the mirror for years now.

I won’t tell you what the surgeon said, that they took almost 2 pounds off each breast. Now I suspect some of my sweaters will be huge and other button down shirts might fit without straining for the first time in years. OK, but I really liked those sweaters. Yes, I know how to sew.

Who is that woman I catch a glimpse of in the bathroom, the one with the tiny (for me) top and the usual size 10 jeans. I don’t recognize her, only that she is posturing like she hurts. Sometimes she is pain free if she holds still and doesn’t move her arms. Other times her whole upper torso burns like a chemical burn. Sometimes there is a perpetual ache. This too shall pass.

The incisions look clean and they seem to be healing through their betadine tinged scrub which is still evident past several washings, as are the black marks made free hand by the plastic surgeon.

I think I am in mourning for a part of me that has been there for over 50 years, could that be possible?
How did I become so vintage, and now so rearranged?

I am pouring out my heart and soul to this piece of paper still not knowing if this frontal assault and the prayers of so many did the job in eradicating that terror with the short name, cancer. I should find out in a couple days what the final biopsy says and know if we go to radiation from here or if further, more drastic surgery is yet necessary. I have ordered new, colorful and pretty bras. I wonder if I will get to use them?

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A Season for Thanks All Year Round

We are about to celebrate Thanksgiving on a special day, one for family, friends, food and focus on our provider, God. We pause to remember His special gifts to us beginning with our salvation. If Jesus hadn’t come and lived among us and then gone to that terrible splintery cross and died so that we might live, where would we be? I hate to even think with the path that I was running before He saved me.

Perhaps it is good to reflect on where He met us and what He delivered us from. He delivered us from ourselves, our sin, our choices which broke His heart on a regular basis, our self focused life styles leading ultimately to our destruction. If He hadn’t come to pay the debt we owed and yet we could have never paid, where would we be? Jesus is God, sinless yet tempted just as we are all tempted. He left heaven. One day we will see with our own eyes exactly what He left, or maybe better put WHO He left. He left the presence of His Father to become a baby boy who’d grow up to be that man on the cross. The only one who could have died and paid the terrible price for your sin and for mine.

Long ago, yet it seems only yesterday I heard His speaking to my heart or hearts:

My child, rejoice for I have saved your soul from sin and damnation. Climb unto my heavenly pathways – let Me lift you unto Me as you lift Me up in song, in spirit with joy. I care. I love you. Quiet your spirit before Me and I will teach you My peace.

The following scriptures amplify what the Lord Jesus Christ laid on my heart in the above “word” from Him to me and to you. The scriptures below clarify and some could even be used as prayers to the Lord.

not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit…(NKJV)

I acknowledged my sin to You, And my iniquity I have not hidden. I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the LORD,” And You forgave the iniquity of my sin.  Selah (NKJV)

[ Redemption in Christ ] Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ…..(NKJV)

Surely I have calmed and quieted my soul, Like a weaned child with his mother; Like a weaned child is my soul within me. (NKJV)

[ Be Steadfast ] Therefore, beloved, looking forward to these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless…..(NKJV)

Prayer: Thank you Lord Jesus that you CAME and didn’t call 10,000 angels but went through the agony of death and separation from the Father as he turned his head. Oh, Lord, will we ever begin to grasp what that sacrifice cost? Thank you that you can and will teach us Your peace. And thank you that I have grown, yes, in tiny increments but little by little is still growth in You! AMEN

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(C) Marijo Phelps all rights reserved. Use with proper credits.

Nasty Drug Reaction Needing Prayer

Just posted this letter to my pastors in an effort to stay awake and stop the nightmares. Standing in the need of prayer please:

And what, you may wonder, am I doing up at 1:30 in the AM? It began with a visual hallucination of a cat – a very creative and fanciful cat which I saw right by my recliner (with a long curly tail – I knew it was a hallucination although I had not had any oxycontin since 6 PM – I mentioned the cat to Mick (looking nothing like any of ours by the way and I knew it was a hallucination)  then drifted off again.

Woke with terrible nightmare (prayed in here somewhere telling the enemy to get lost) I was in a large croud at huge retreat center – looking for Colette. Someone was upsetting some priests who lost a tiny ball of some kind,. All the sudden I realized something was wrong with my surgery (came against that too) and had to find a private place to look as I felt drainage. Finally got into a girl’s locker room shower type area and closed some curtains – and looked. Teri – it was like my breasts were shreds of rubber and the betadine they scrubbed me with was running down my tummy, and legs. I was devastated.

Got up and peed and realized right away it was nightmares – had read somewhere this could be rare side effect of that drug. Prayed some more and drifted off to have a series of WWII related night mares about ice flows, and people coming and going and freezing etc.Bob Schidler was in one and Maxine too. They tried to help me. By flying me above the sceenerio…. (I can’t spell)

This time I told Mick what was happening and came into computer room drinking much to get it out of my system and writing to you to get it out of my system (when we were little we would have nightmares and tell them out loud to mom and then could go back to sleep and be OK – you aren’t mom but I know you will pray. I seem fine while awake (no lightness of head or anything else)


I might make some tea.

Will call doc in AM for sure.

I googled and all of this can definitely happen on that drug. Along with the inordinate sense of well being I seemed to have the day after surgery.

Might send this to several other pray-ers too and get that support going. Definitely do not want to sleep again and want to get this out of my system.

Might have Donna sit with me today so someone is on hand – will e-mail this to her so she can see what is up.

Love you and I know you will pray!


Sunday, October 16, 2011

First Shower Post Op

I am sure our house looked like this after my shower today!!!

Well, today was a milestone - even if I take one pain pill I sleep and sleep - I am guessing I need that - trying to take pain pill only at night but so far today (we were up at 6 something - that little internal clock goes off no matter what!)

I got to take my first shower. Didn't was my curly mop but got the basics done and Mick changed the dressing. i always seem to get a little queasy with that procedure but he is very good!

I got my scrambled eggs in bed today and today he asked me to show him how to run the washing machine (yes, we have lived up here almost 7 years but I have been retired all but 2 months of that time) and the dishwasher. So with both machines purring away I reclined. I told him to please, please go for a hike. It is now 10 AM and I woke up to go to the bathroom.

ALL my plumbing is working once again - yahoo!

My sister says she hasn't gotten one e-mail from me since surgery (we talked on the phone twice) but where did they go? Maybe the pain meds have me drunker than I think?

I am sleeping too well and having pleasant dreams and loving my e-mails from friends literally all over the globe. THANK YOU and biggest, bestest thanks to my Jesus!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Jesus the Head of My Surgical Team and My Healer

Actually, my Lord Jesus Christ is the head of my everything team and definitely the head of me! I am SO glad too. I have taken a couple pain pills since yesterday's blog. Mick is spoiling me with breakfast in recliner, which has been my bed since surgery. We both decided that our 18 year old bed needs to be replaces - too many nests in it and we aren't squirrels nor as young as we were even yesterday.

The e-mails from you all have been so encouraging and overwhelming, close friends, relatives and writer friends I have yet to meet but love over the internet. Our neighbors got me slippers and a lovely lap robe which I have managed to keep all 4 cats off of as they aren't allowed to be in the same room with Mommy right now, too many roaming paws to upset the apple cart.

The weather is a gorgeous fall day and I shuttled Mick outside for a nice, long hike.And I have caught up on more (probably much needed albeit drug induced) sleep. Have been up drinking fluids and some chunky soup for lunch.

One time this AM when Mick changed my dressings that I thought I was going to faint or do something else medical and because you aren't all RNs will spare you. that went when I reclined and got some cool fluids down.

All in all this has been an incredible procedure and not at all the thing I imagined in my nurse's heart and mind. THANK YOU, Dr. JESUS!!!

I am not released to drive for some time yet but will keep you all posted on this odyssey of God's healing grace! Next milestone is awaiting the surgical biopsy report this coming Tuesday or Wednesday. I know my Lord is taking care of that too.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Day after breast cancer surgery! PRAISING the BEST, JESUS!!!

The surgery took 1 1/2 hours LESS than they thought. I threw up once and then was good. We actually got out of Colorado Springs in daylight AFTER having a soft serve ice cream and Taco Bell.... I felt like I had 5 underwire bras on TOO tight but no real pain - just tenderness.They didn't intubate (the RN said they would) so no sore throat!

This AM I am a bit spacey from the pain med (not taking the big guns one just the Percodan or Percoset 4 hour one.

I have only a tiny tenderness where my arms rest on my ribs.

Praising God and can't believe this as the surgeon intimated I might be taking pain meds 12 days from now still.

Jesus, my Lord, savior and Doctor - you are the BEST!!!!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Night before surgery

tomorrow is my big day. the breast surgeon is so personable she gave me her personal cell phone number and told me to call her with any questions or concerns tonight. surgery will take 4 hours (gulp) and they plan to send me home afterwards tomorrow. We need to go back Friday Am and see the plastic surgeon as he leaves for a week out of town and usually doesn't do surgery when he will be gone.

The Lord is SO close and I know it is the prayers from all of you! Mick and I are ready to do it and have this in the "rear view mirror". I will try to e-mail all just as soon as I can type!

Love you and thanks so much for your love, prayers and support!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Again, Do not Fret

I needed to hear this today. My health issues are making me a bit crazy. As a retired RN I know just enough anymore to be dangerous. I do know that when blood pressure is creeping up and seemingly my BP meds are making my blood sugar readings go up and up even when my diet is perfect. Perfect for something with 4 feet and long, silky ears… if I eat any more veggies I will grow those ears myself. Veggies and lean meats, poultry and fish (ugh) along with some legumes and a few nuts. OK. Then I try to get quiet and hear what the Lord is saying to me:

Child, don’t panic. You are exactly where I want you right now, there is a perfect purpose in it. You aren’t “ahead of schedule” or “behind schedule” but right on time and where I desire you. Look neither to the left or the right but up, to me, your FATHER. Rest, be still so that you can mount up with wings as an eagle. Then shall you walk, not run, on higher ground. Steady and supported by ME- I AM that you might BE, through my strength made perfect as you seek my will in childlike faith, acceptance and expectancy. I do care so deeply.  Do not fret your “progress” or lack thereof but draw nigh unto me. Selah.

Prayer: Thank You, my Father. I also pray a prayer to send the enemy far from me. He is the one who seeks to cheat, lie, rob, destroy and accuse. I trust in You, my Lord Jesus and that you will either heal this ornery body of mine or give the medical personnel wisdom and the right med choices and answers. Praising your name for reminding me whose most capable hands I am in. AMEN

(C) Marijo Phelps all rights reserved. Use with proper credits.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Are You Overflowing with Joy? You Can Be!

Happiness and joy are different things although we all enjoy both of them. Happiness seems to depend on circumstances and come and go but joy can be deep and abiding even in the “bad time” circumstances. Joy is based on being free in the Lord Jesus Christ, forgiven and made into a new creature. When I listen carefully I can hear the Lord whispering in my ear:
I have come to bring you fullness of joy.

Open up more to me in worship and praise. It is your God who reigns and directs and loves you so very much.

Yield up the dross which my fire has separated – don’t cling to that which drags you down but release it to me.

You are learning. You do grow. You are loved. Look up to Jesus. Be not bound by man or self enslavement but free in the Spirit.  I love you, Daughter.

In John 15:11 the Bible is quoting Jesus in saying “these things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.” There is no better joy we can have than the perfect joy given to us by Jesus.

In John 16:24 Jesus encourages his followers to “ask in My name”, ask and you will receive that your joy may be full.” It is almost as if He is handing us a check with His signature on it if we are willing to ask. He wants us to have His joy and a full portion, not just a tiny bit!

We need to allow Him to turn us the heat at times to get rid of the impurities (dross). He is so able to make us pure and shining. Sometimes the heat is not “fun” but most often it is very necessary. Can we be willing to say “yes, Lord, yes”?

Dearest Lord, please help me to let go of anything brought to the surface as impure by Your Holy spirit’s fire.  Help me to receive the fullness of joy that You offer and to be ever yielded to the work You would do in my heart.  Take my life and make if Your own more fully. In Jesus most wonderful name. AMEN

(C) Marijo Phelps all rights reserved. Use with proper credits.