Just A Reminder. . .

Just A Reminder

 

 

Can’t wait to see you this weekend at the Anoka County Library Local Author Fair!  Be sure to stop my booth to say “hi”, sign up for my giftcard giveaway, and of course, to pick up your copy of Scattered: Finding God in Your Story.

img_0580

 

 

2016 Author Fair

 

Photo Credit: “Time” by Unsplash, permission through C.C.

Advertisements

Throwing Up With Words

Scattered: Finding God In Your Story (Chapter 1)

 

Hey, I hope it was a great Monday for you today.

 

If not, hang in there – it’s almost over and tomorrow will be better.  Remember, God’s mercies are new every morning.

 

God’s loyal love couldn’t have run out,
    his merciful love couldn’t have dried up.
They’re created new every morning.
    How great your faithfulness!

Lamentations 3:22-23 (The Message)

 

Right now, I’m bobbing my head like an idiot, listening to Andy Grammer, because you can’t not move, listening to Andy Grammar and I’m staring at the rain drizzling down the window at Starbucks and – – – oh my gosh, I forgot to tell you, Starbucks moved in like a mile from my house.

 

Ba-bam!  There it is, proof that there is a God and he soooooo loves me!  I am one happy girl slurping on my PSL (that’s a Pumpkin Spice Latte, for those of you not yet fluent in Starbucks speak).

 

At any rate, I thought I’d share an excerpt from Chapter 1 of my book, Scattered: Finding God In Your Story.  I’ve had several people tell me recently that they have always wanted to write their story.  Maybe you’re one of those people, harboring the dream of becoming a story-teller and sharing your life with the world.  If so, then this is for you tonight. . .

img_0580

 

1

Bleh

Throwing Up with Words

 

 

The thing about writing is – there really are no rules in the beginning, except one.

 

Just write.

The temptation is to overanalyze or criticize.

You’re not in it for anyone but you at this point.

The idea is to just get the raw emotion out.

 

It’s a lot like throwing up.

 

After my husband and I first got married, we went to a fondue restaurant.

It was awesome, except when it wasn’t.

 

Which was about an hour after we got home.

 

We both had gotten food poisoning.

 

For the next 24 hours we took turns tossing our cookies, – – er, fondue.

 

We would roll over and gently rub one another’s backs and say encouraging things like, “I’m sorry babe, it’ll be o – o –ohhhhhh no, Where’s the bucket?”

 

Romantic huh?

 

That’s kinda what I had in mind when I started writing.

 

Throwing up that is, not romance.

 

I had been poisoned by some things that had happened to me as a child and I just needed to get it out.

 

Hence, the figurative “Bleh” all over my laptop.

 

I would have Oscar-winning rants; all while sipping joe and jamming out to Goo Goo Dolls.  It was messy, it was painful, and in the end – it was healing.

 

I would look up new words to express things like sad and mad.  And later, I expanded my writing to include phrases that expressed deeper emotions . . . like – “really sad” and “really mad”.

 

And there was a beautiful clarity that began to form as I wrote.  .  . I was a hot mess.

 

When I started writing ten years ago, I was really emotionally damaged.

 

As in, I made train wrecks look good.

 

But I heard God speak to me.  It was only one word at the time, “write”.

 

I think I responded dumbly with an “uh, okay.”

 

Really though, what are you supposed to say when God tells you something like that?

“No?”

 

And so began my journey of Bleh.

 

I cried and bled for the art of it all.

Facing painful memories and hoping for answers.

 

After a couple of years, it was there – my art of “Bleh” in black and white.  And it looked something like a Van Gogh.

 

My life splashed on a typeset canvas.

 

Except no one liked me well enough to buy my art of “Bleh”, but on the other hand I didn’t hate it enough to cut off any body parts – you know, like an ear or something.

 

More years passed and I began to value what had been slowly happening to my life through something as simple as writing.

 

Old wounds that never seemed to heal were finally beginning to scar over.

 

I wasn’t as scared of letting my walls down and letting people in to see me in all of my vulnerability.  My relationships with others began to heal, I began to value myself, and my perception of God took on new lenses.

 

So this is my story, and I hope that by the end of this journey, you’ll find that it’s okay to share yours.

 

Because your story is worth telling.

 

To help heal your own heart as much as lend courage to someone else, who may just be in the very place that you have once been.

 

……………………………………………….

 (taken from Chapter 1 of Scattered: Finding God In Your Story by Joyce Ackermann)

Photo Credit: “Woman” by Unsplash permissions through C.C. by 2.0

 

Psssst. . . Don’t forget to come by the Anoka County Local Author Fair on November 5th, 2016 from 11 am – 2pm.

 

Why Boundaries Are Necessary

Why Boundaries Are Neccessary

I saw this tonight and I couldn’t wait to share this.  Great post by Kris Vallotton on boundaries, why they aren’t selfish and how to start creating some.

 

By Kris Vallotton
October 19, 2016
www.krisvallotton.com

If you don’t manage your life, others will. If you don’t take care of yourself, no one else will. If you don’t set boundaries for yourself, the crowd will get what they think they need from you, but soon there will be nothing left to get. Then they will discard you like an old pair of shoes.

MANAGING YOUR SOUL

If you set boundaries to manage your soul, many won’t like it. They will accuse you of being arrogant, uncaring, not spiritual, unloving, etc. They will tell you about the life of Jesus, who never turned away anyone…of course He didn’t begin His public ministry until he was 30 and died at 33. He also had no wife or children to take care of…no soccer games to go to, no sleepless nights…up caring for a crying babies etc…

If you have a public platform, most people think you are obligated to carry out their will…pray for them at their convenience, take pictures until all you can see lights, hear every detail of their story, while 40 other people wait in line behind them, follow you out to your car or talk to you over the bathroom stall. You are expected to answer every post, email, phone call, text, etc.

If you love God and are passionate about caring for people…if you give people hope and believe in miracles…if you pour out your soul for the broken and the poor…if you are radically generous…you WILL have favor with God and man. BUT if you don’t steward the favor of God…if you let the fear of man be your shepherd…if you convince yourself that you are the savior of the world, obligated to meet every need that you are exposed to…YOU WILL CRASH and the crowd will find another savior.

LEARN TO SAY NO

So a little advise from an aging man; chill…you are not that important. Have fun! Enjoy your life. Learn to say NO! Operate out of overflow. Let Jesus love on you. Let the crowd think whatever they want…and remind yourself that there is always enough time to touch everyone Jesus sent to you.

 

Photo Credit: “Fence” by Unsplash permissions through C.C. by 2.0

The Eye of God

The Eye of God

I write for my sanity.

You thought I wrote just because I loved you.

I do.

I really do.

But writing also helps keep me sane.

You see, by writing I have a built in excuse to go to a coffee shop every week and write.

My husband is a business guy, I call him the Human Calculator, because, we’ll he is.  It is freaky how well he can calculate numbers and percentages in his head when it comes to money. And because he’s a bottom line kinda of guy, in his mind – paying for coffee every week is a business expense -which means I can get away with it.  (Take notes ladies, this is how it’s done.)

So that’s part one of my self induced therapy plan – self-medicate, ie, drink coffee.

But the other part is to write about how I feel and how I’m processing the world, because . . . lean in. . .  I’m a stuffer.

 

Yeah, you heard me.  I stuff my emotions.

Which is why blogging is a such a great outlet.

At the heart of blogging is connection.

It’s all about letting another person into your world, the way you think and what you feel.

Because of this, bloggers are awesome people.

 

But right now I hate blogging.

And I kind of hate being a blogger.

And I definitely don’t feel awesome.

 

Because it means that I’m one of those people who processes her world by writing about it.

 

 

I’m a stuffer who writes about the stuff I don’t really want to write about because I figure if I put my stuff out there, I won’t be as much of a stuffer anymore. – Say that 10 times fast.

Here’s what my stuffy side doesn’t want to say tonight.

 

God’s not done healing me.

 

I actually thought he was.

I thought I had finally moved past all of my childhood issues and was on the cusp of something big. . . like the promised land of adulthood.

But I don’t think he got my memo.

 

Actually it’s the opposite.

It’s like he saved one of the biggest bombshells for last.

 

And here it is: Because of growing up in a home with a schizophrenic mother and living in a constant state of childhood trauma – I have  ummm — cough — tendencies.

 

What?

 

I said, I have — cough — tendencies.

 

Alright, fine.

 

I HAVE CODEPENDENT TENDENCIES.

There, I said it.

 

Maybe not a shocker for you, but it is for me.

 

And now I’m going from a season where I thought I was finished with all of this inner healing stuff to my-dreams-are-feeling-a-bit-like-sand-slipping-through-my-fingers-all-because-I don’t-know-how-to-not-be-overly-responsible-and-just-trust-God-when-it-comes-to-other-people’s-emotions.

Grrrrr me.

 

Here’s the crazy part, I knew he was up to something.

I was playing the piano one afternoon and just spending time with him, when God shows me this picture of a giant eye.  It reminded me of the nebula in the photo above.  Not intimidating or scary, but I was very aware that my heart was being searched.

And since then, I haven’t heard God say anything about it.

But I’m pretty sure that this discovery of codependent tendencies is tied to that day.

 

God means what he says. What he says goes. His powerful Word is sharp as a surgeon’s scalpel, cutting through everything, whether doubt or defense, laying us open to listen and obey. Nothing and no one is impervious to God’s Word. We can’t get away from it—no matter what.

Hebrews 4:12-13 (The Message)

 

Okay seriously, I didn’t even know I had codependency issues until like 2 months ago.  And it’s not like I want to keep them or anything but man, I wish that God would snap his fingers and make it just go away.

Open a can of miracle, right here, right now.

Because I am one bewildered girl right now.  Lez just be honest.  I did not realize I was as messed up as he is showing me I am.

 

My friends and family, however, are not as shocked.

 

To make matters worse, this has not been a fast moving kind of revelation.  This is more like a slow as molasses revelation.  As in, every day I’m going to show you what is going on and how it is affecting you and the people you love.

 

Ouch.

This really sucks.

 

But I don’t want to stay this way.

I really do want to change.

 

Repentance at its core is being willing to go through the process of being changed.

 

Now that we know what we have—Jesus, this great High Priest with ready access to God—let’s not let it slip through our fingers. We don’t have a priest who is out of touch with our reality. He’s been through weakness and testing, experienced it all—all but the sin. So let’s walk right up to him and get what he is so ready to give. Take the mercy, accept the help.

Hebrews 4:14-16 (The Message)

 

Okay, Jesus, so healing is what you’re offering me in this season.

I’ll take that mercy.

I’ll accept that help.

 

Photo Credit: “Helix Nebula” by WikiImages, permissions through C.C. by 2.0