A Month + Worth of Sunday Blessings (#232)

(1) Fun mail!!

(2) Lunch with DB

(3) Homemade bread from KB and WB.

(4) Chatting with KL on the phone.

(5) A fun family event at church despite the weather.

(6) Homemade knoephla soup

(7) Vanilla lattes

(8) Fun night at BK and AKs house

(9) Getting to hold baby Suzie

(10) First Communion class

(11) Texting with my faves!!

(12) Another phone call with KL.

(13) First Communion milestone at church

(14) Faith Formation network meeting at CTs house.

(15) Chatting with Daddy on the phone

(16) Fall crafting event with KD and RD

(17) Awesome PLN!!

(18) A visit from GW

(19) Hugging MR and JR

(20) Hugging CT and her girls.

(21) Awesome LYO gathering!!

(22) Amazing colleagues and friends.

(23) Running into and seeing MH at the ma in Minot.

(24) Kind words from my friends KG and EG

(25) Seeing JT and TT also in the Minot mall.

(26) Finding my fave Scripture on a mug at the B and N.

(27) Leading worship solo

(28) Lots of great visits at our local assisted living facilities.

(29) Running into LC and CG at the grocery store.

(30) Coffee from DJ

(31) Homemade kuchen from LL

(32) Awesome confirmation class.

(33) Halloween donations from Hardees. Thanks Hardees!

(34) Harney and Sons Cinnamon Spice tea

(35) Another awesome PLN!!

(36) Kind words from parishioners. Feeling very loved and appreciated!

(37) Blue Apron meals

(38) Finishing Write 31 Days

(39) Halloween fun!!

(40) Fantastic books…and sharing them with friends.

(41) Kleenex for when the tears fall during your All Saints Sunday childrens sermon.

(42) Holding baby Athena

(43) Flowers shared with me by Athenas family.

(44) All the saints

(45) A beautiful PLN (Post Liturgical Nap)

(46) A sweet card from a parishioner

(47) Stella Berry wine

(48) A beautiful compliment.

(49) Finally using a gift card I won awhile ago

(50) My warm kitten Luna

(51) Hallmark Christmas movies

(52) Z running up to me and giving me a hug.

(53) Another awesome PLN

Burdened

I am linking up for the Five Minute Friday. The FMF is hosted by Kate Motaung over at our Five Minute Friday website. Today’s word prompt is “burden.” We would love to have you join us.

The weight of the world is heavy. I turn on the news and hear of yet another mass shooting. It’s all too much. We must do something. But what? It feels like such a heavy burden.

“My yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Today, many of my friends in the Thousands Oaks California area are feeling burdened. A mass shooting. Then a wildfire. I’ve seen maps. These situations are not that far apart. My friends are tired and weary. Please pray!

It is so easy to feel burdened by the world. But God understands. God loved us so much God sent God’s one and only son into the world for all of us.

“My yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

I Am Still A Daughter!

I open my Facebook feed to read about yet another mass shooting; at a bar in Thousand Oaks California. My body feels numb. It is as if I feel nothing. But the truth is I feel something.

I actually feel everything!  I feel sadness. I feel fear. Most of all I fear anger!

How long, oh Lord?!?!

The truth is that I don’t think I will ever become numb to this horrible news when it flashes across our tv screens. I am still the daughter of a woman who lives daily with a mental illness. And my blood just starts to boil when reporters and everyone else seems to play the blame game. My mom is one of the kindest, most caring, faith-filled woman. She has never let her illness get in the way of her faith. In fact, I know she would give the shirt off of her back to someone in need.

Now don’t get me wrong. I still believe we have work to do. We need to continue to work on breaking the stigma of mental illness. Yet from my own experience with our family, I know that the proper treatment can be found. In fact, the reality is that those with mental illnesses are more LIKELY to be the victims of a crime than to be the victimizers.

So why? Why is mental illness the scapegoat? Why don’t we look at the other issues that come with these situations? How did the shooter get a hold of a gun in the first place?  I don’t have any answers. In all actuality, I am filled with more questions than answers.

I grew up in a home where my dad, grandpa and others hunted. Yet the guns were locked up. And if they were out, my sister and I got gun safety lessons. There was no way our dad was going to let us use them unless we knew the consequences of how they were used. And I know there are others who have grown up with guns in their homes too.

Yet we have a problem, friends! There have been too many mass shootings; too many school shootings. Too many parents who have sent their kids to school where they believed them to be safe. Only to have them find out that the school was not safe. It breaks my heart and I fear for my sister, all other teachers, and their students ever day when they go to school.

I am angry….angry that school is not a safe place. Angry that mental illness is often automatically the reason attached to why a shooting happened in the first place. Angry that so many have lost their lives. Angry that it continues to keep happening. And as it keeps happening, my blood continues to boil. Yet I want and know we can do better!

I am still the daughter of a woman who lives daily with a mental illness. I have learned the power in sharing our story to help break the stigma. Yet when there is another school/mass shooting, it doesn’t seem nearly enough. And so I simply cry out “kyrie eliason, Lord have mercy” while simultaenously crying out “How long, oh Lord, how long?”

How long?

How long?

How long?

Lord, have mercy!

Repetition

I am linking up for the Five Minute Friday. The FMF is hosted by Kate Motaung over at our Five Minute Friday website. Today’s word prompt is “repeat.” We would love to have you join us.

My fingers dance across the keyboard.
Words tell stories.
Voices are heard.
Sometimes for the first time.

31 Days
Words and stories unfolding
A tapestry of God’s love unveiled.

So much pain, loss and grief
Too many taken from us too soon
Peace found in tradition
In the repetition of words

The Lords Prayer
Spoken together
Words that bring peace

More words
Promises spoken
“We commend Barb, Ben, Ralph, Aaron, Rachel,
Stephanie, and Jim to your care
Sheep of your own fold
Sinners of your own redeeming”
Words spoken each time.

Death, grief
Repeat
Death, grief
Repeat
An ongoing journey

But hope and healing
Found in the repetition
Of words