Monday, December 31, 2012

God's GPS

I ponder every morsel of wisdom from you.
Psalm 119:15 (MSG) 

I will meditate on thy precepts,
And have respect unto thy ways.
Psalm 119:15 (ASV & KJV) 

Like the descriptive meaning of Psalm 119:15 from Gill's Exposition of the Bible
"I will meditate in thy precepts,.... In his own mind; revolve them in his thoughts; consider well the nature, excellency, usefulness, and importance of them, and the obligations he lay under to observe them. The Targum is, "I will speak of thy precepts;'' in conversation to others, and recommend them to them;
so the Arabic version: and have respect unto thy ways; or "look" (s) unto them; take heed unto them, and walk in them, and not wander from them; make them the rule of walk and conversation; as travelers look well to their ways, that they do not miss them, and go into wrong ways; they observe the directions that have been given them, and keep unto them; and so good men refer to the ways of the Lord, which the Scriptures point out unto them; see Jeremiah 6:16: “This is what the LORD says: "Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls. But you said, 'We will not walk in it.’” 

As I read that this morning, what came to mind is my own personal "GPS" from God. However, the GPS only works as good as you pay attention to the directions. And God's GPS ALWAYS has the right directions, unlike some GPS/Map Aps from companies.

The overall idea of Psalm 119:15 is that first I realize the importance of God's Word in living day to day. Secondly, the goal is to "think about it, so that it has an effect on my life". God's Word should have an impact on my actions, attitude, and speech. And lastly, this doesn't "just happen" I have to make a conscious effort to ponder every morsel from God. 

Each day as I make an effort to "Create a positive day", I have to realize that can only be accomplished if I follow God's GPS. 

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Ponder Every Morsel!

"I ponder every morsel of wisdom from you."
Ps 119:15 (MSG)

One thing about living with chronic pain is not sleeping well. I've learned not to be bothered by not sleeping, rather I have enjoyed "Treasure Hunting"! When I go "Treasure Hunting", I read through the Psalms looking for great treasures which I can think on throughout the day. 

As I was thinking about my "Treasure Hunting" I wondered what God could teach me from the Psalms throughout 2013. I picked 31 Psalms and will focus on a Psalm each day, repeating the same Psalms each month.

I created a book to keep track of what God teaches me. I call it my "I ponder every morsel of wisdom from you." Ps 119:15 (MSG) Book

Here is the page for the FIRST of each Month:

I'm excited to see what God will teach me as I focus on His Word. Looking forward to a year filled with God's blessings and care. I have no idea what God has planned for me in 2013, but I know that whatever it is, He will be there with me. My prayer for 2013 is that I get to know my God better and grow in His knowledge and grace. 

Creating a positive day is not about me and what makes me happy, rather it's about living a life that brings honor and glory to God. In order for me to do that, I must continue to learn about Him. 

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

A Laugh and a Reason to Shout!

Was up very early today, 3 am... so I went "Treasure Hunting" through the Psalms.

Here is my Treasure for today! This passage made me LAUGH! And then made me SHOUT, "God is GREAT!"

Read it and let me know if you laughed. Just picturing vs 26! Love how David is so "real" with God. Sounds like something a "kid" would "wish", but isn't that how we all often feel? Reading through the Psalms has enhanced my prayer life, as I learn to be "real" with God. He knows my thoughts anyway... I might as well talk them over with Him. 

After I got done laughing, I had to focus on verse 28.... do I say "over and over, and over... God is GREAT"? Again, it reminds me of a little kid who likes the sound of something and continually repeats it. I should "like the sound of "God is GREAT!" that I WANT to SHOUT it over..... and over..... and over... and over.... and never get tired of SHOUTING it or repeating it. 

Psalm 35:23-28 (MSG)
Please get up—wake up! Tend to my case.
My God, my Lord—my life is on the line.
Do what you think is right, God, my God,
but don’t make me pay for their good time.
Don’t let them say to themselves,
“Ha-ha, we got what we wanted.”
Don’t let them say,
“We’ve chewed him up and spit him out.”
Let those who are being hilarious
at my expense
Be made to look ridiculous.
Make them wear donkey’s ears;
Pin them with the donkey’s tail,
who made themselves so high and mighty!
But those who want
the best for me,
Let them have the last word—a glad shout!—
and say, over and over and over,
“God is great—everything works
together for good for his servant.”
I’ll tell the world how great and good you are,
I’ll shout Hallelujah all day, every day.

Just KNOWING the FACT that God is GREAT, adds a wonderful positive aspect to my day! 

Monday, December 17, 2012

My Agenda or God's Agenda?

Monday. Was just planning my agenda for today as I try to get things accomplished before surgery on Thurs, Dec 20. I had to stop in the midst of "MY PLANNING" to realize that I need to make sure "MY AGENDA" is what God wants me to accomplish today.

I want to spend my day "God-looking" not "Rhonda-doing". For if my focus is on me and what I want to get done, I'll miss the wonderful things God wants me to accomplish and the blessings He has waiting for me. 

Time to pause and talk my day over with God to make sure He's included in my plans and I'm listening to His directions as I go throughout my day.

When I include God in my planning that makes a positive day!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Well-Thought-Out Plans

"God, you are my God.
I celebrate you. I praise you.
You’ve done your share of miracle-wonders,
well-thought-out plans, solid and sure."
Isaiah 25:1 (MSG)

I'm claiming this verse for my 'surgery week'. My goal is to celebrate and praise God and share His miracle-wonders...knowing that no matter what the outcome of the surgery it's all part of HIS well-thought-out plan...very solid and true! What a peace and comfort that provides! 

And the very thought that God has a specific plan for me sure makes the day a positive one! 

Note: On December 20th I'm scheduled for back surgery number nine. I'm trying a new Spinal Implant Stimulator Company. The goal of this surgery is to see if the Dr. can place wires without removing the 'paddle' from the other Stimulator. I'll be "wired" for a week to test the placement. The wires will be removed in back surgery number 10, on or about December 27th. If the new wire placement works in helping reduce my leg pain, I'll make then decision whether or not for permanent placement.


Had to run some errands the other day, one being getting my hair cut. I stopped into the place and asked if my stylist was working today... not for over an hour. OK. Figured I'd go finish my errands and come back.

On the way out of the salon, I stopped to look at some pics of shorter hair. I mentioned to a lady waiting, that "I'm going shorter... just now sure how short." She asked, "why?" I replied, that with upcoming back surgery, shorter hair is easier to care for.

She then asked if I was in an accident. I briefly explained and then her expression changed... and she said "Wow, you must be in pain.... but you are smiling." I replied, "That's the joy of the Lord. God loves me and cares for me in amazing ways." After we talked for a bit longer, she thanked me for sharing about God's goodness. We parted with "Merry Christmas!" 

And I thought I was "just running errands" today... but God had something more specific in mind!
"If you want to know your calling, don’t go “calling-looking.” Go God-looking. God knows where He wants you, what He is calling you to do, when He wants you to do it, and how He wants it done. Therefore, if you want to find your calling, look for God. When you find God, His calling will find you." Tony Evans
It's fun going "God-looking" and sharing His awesome love with others. And when I'm "God-looking" that makes the day a positive one.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Grace. Love. Friendship.

Grace. Love. Friendship.

Add some adjectives to describe those nouns: AMAZING, EXTRAVAGANT, INTIMATE. That makes them even more special.

But now look at the SOURCES: Jesus Christ, God, and the Holy Spirit.

Now realize that EACH of us has those in our possession each and every day... WOW! 

"The amazing grace of the Master, Jesus Christ, the extravagant love of God, the intimate friendship of the Holy Spirit, be with all of you."
2 Corinthians 13:14 (MSG)

How will knowing that I have amazing grace, extravagant love and intimate friendship with Jesus Christ, God the Father and the Holy Spirit, impact me today....and everyday..?

If I really want to create a positive day, I need to realize that I have these 3 gifts (grace, love, friendship) from Jesus Christ, God the Father, and the Holy Spirit. 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Life LARGE with Strength!

Read Psalm 138 this morning. I really like verse 3. The very thought that the MOMENT I call upon God, HE steps in and makes my life LARGE with strength. WOW!

I like picture that creates... a life LARGE with strength... and ALL-POWERFUL God making my life LARGE with strength.... awesome concept, and truth.

Thank you! Everything in me says “Thank you!”
Angels listen as I sing my thanks.
I kneel in worship facing your holy temple
and say it again: “Thank you!”
Thank you for your love,
thank you for your faithfulness;
Most holy is your name,
most holy is your Word.
The moment I called out, you stepped in;
you made my life large with strength.
Psalm 138: 1-3 (MSG)

When I rely upon God's strength, the day is an "extra positive" day!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

"I See You" (by Bryan Duncan)

Singer and song writer Bryan Duncan has a new CD out, "Conversations". One of the songs is titled, "I See You". 

"I see you watching over me every day another way 
That I can see your love 
I see you lookin out for me all I wanna do is 
Thank you thank you" (Bryan Duncan, "I See You")
Written by: Bryan Duncan/Slam Duncan Music (ASCAP) and John
Schreiner/John Andrew Schreiner Music (ASCAP)

Last night, I could shout, "I SEE YOU!". Once again God provided a need in a very detailed and creative way. 

I needed to go to the grocery store to get some food. I looked at my cash, $10. Then I saw my "Change Bank". That's where I put all my change when I'm done shopping. I counted out what was there, and that gave me just over $11 more. Yeah! Got to the store and got the items needed. Yes, I was that lady in line counting out nickels, dimes, and pennies. I was very thankful that I had enough money to get what I needed.

Down to my last few nickels and dimes... literally... I was wondering what I could do to "get by" until my disability check was deposited. Well, God had a plan in place! 

To look at the details, we need to go back to October 16, 2010!

In October 2010, God provided a new grill and accessories, which was too much/big for me. So I "exchanged" the  grill package with friends for a smaller electric grill. (You can read all the details about how God Multiplied His Blessing here: What I didn't know is that God wasn't done with His "multiplying" of that contest win.

Part of that contest win included a Deep Fryer. I had passed that along to my friends when we did the "grill exchange". But they didn't want it, so they were going to sell it at a garage sale. I figured they had sold it, and thought no more about it. 

Last night, I was with my friend, and she said she had a surprise for me. They finally sold the fryer and the guy was coming THAT NIGHT to pick it up and pay for it... and they were giving me the money. WOW! 

My friends had tried to sell the fryer several times, but no buyers. But, God tucked away the fryer until a time when He knew I'd needed the money. God's attention to details and His timing is ALWAYS perfect!

So last night I was SHOUTING

"I see you watching over me every day another way 
That I can see your love 
I see you lookin out for me all I wanna do is 
Thank you thank you" (Bryan Duncan, "I See You")
Written by: Bryan Duncan/Slam Duncan Music (ASCAP) and John
Schreiner/John Andrew Schreiner Music (ASCAP)
I continue to be amazed and in awe of God's creative and very detailed plan to care for me. I'm also grateful for my friends who continued to work over the past two years to sell the fryer, and made the choice to give me the money. My friends were willing to be "used by God" to supply my need. Very grateful for the wonderful friends God has given me.

How can I NOT create a positive day,
when I know that God is watching over me every day?
To learn more about Bryan Duncan's music and books, visit his website:

Friday, November 9, 2012

Reached My Goal!

With the support of my family and friends, Dr. Timothy Moore, and the Staff at the Moore Health Wellness Center, I have reached my goal! 
I started at 40% body fat, and now I'm at 24.9% body fat. Lost 10 inches at my waist and over 60 pounds.
Thanks to each of you who supported me on this journey of weight loss. I now have to continue to eat the appropriate combinations and amounts of healthy foods to maintain a healthy weight.

The support from each of you
made each day of this journey a positive day!
Thank you!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

12th Annual Blessings Celebration Day!

Twelve years ago today, I injured my back. Each year on the anniversary of my injury I take time to count my Blessings. When living with chronic pain, it's easier at times, to allow the pain to become the main focus. My philosophy is "CREATE A POSITIVE DAY!" That means each day I focus on the positive aspects of my life and what God is doing in my life. 

Each year on the anniversary of my back injury, I have my BLESSINGS CELEBRATION DAY! I take time to count all the AMAZING blessings God has given me over the past year. It's fun and encouraging!
Each year I am OVERWHELMED by God's GREAT goodness. He takes care of me in the most creative ways and allows me the most amazing opportunities. 

Please join me in my BLESSINGS CELEBRATION DAY and count your blessings. I would love to hear about some of your blessings, simply comment on this post.

Thanks for joining in my

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Strength comes Straight from God

Was praying for a friend today, and God led me to this verse.
"God said this once and for all; how many times Have I heard it repeated? 'Strength comes Straight from God.'"
Psalm 62:11 (MSG)
As I thought about the verse, a few truths came to mind.
1. God is watching over me every moment, therefore, God knows when I need strength.
2. God knows EXACTLY how much strength I need, and will provide the strength at the PRECISE moment I need it.
3. God's strength is AVAILABLE to me. I don't have to "go it alone".
4. The strength God is supplying is "stronger than" my situation, my problem, my fear, my weakness, or anything that may come my way.
5. Since the strength comes DIRECTLY from God, it will NEVER run out, or weaken.
6. God is providing strength. Am I grasping hold or am I relying on my own strength—which is weak and limited?
7. God said it. That means it's SOLID TRUTH! As song says, "God said it, I believe it. That settles it for me!"

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

My Success (so far)

In February 2012, I started on the Moore Health Ideal Weight Loss Program. I am so happy with the results! Not only have I lost 63 pounds, and MANY inches, but I now have a lean mass/fat ratio of 74.5 to 25.5. On Sept 28, 2012, I started Phase 2 of the program.

There are many things which I like about the Moore Health Ideal Weight Loss Program. I like that I was monitored each week to make sure I was losing fat, not the lean mass/muscle. It is EASY! It works! And that I am learning about nutrition and what my body NEEDS for nourishment and fuel to function at its best. 

I'm looking forward to continuing to maintain a healthy weight and lean mass/fat ratio so that I can, as Moore Health says, "Celebrate Health & Wellness".

If you live in the South Elgin, IL area, I'd recommend the Moore Health Ideal Weight Loss Program. To learn more, visit their website:

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Chicagoland Speedway Part 1

WOW! What an amazing day I had on Sunday, Sept 16, 2012 attending the NASCAR Sprint Cup Race at Chicagoland Speedway. Because the day was so amazing and filled with so many blessings, I'm going to be sharing about my day in several posts. This is Part 1.

First, I need to thank the people who made the entire day possible.
1. Dan Leon, president of The Hero Organization and Hero Energy Shot. 
2. TJ Bell, NASCAR driver
3. Fas Lane Racing Team and Sponsor, Green Smoke Racing.

The Drive
Due to my back pain, sitting for more than 15 or 20 minutes becomes unbearable. So, I was wondering how I'd be able to drive from my home to the Speedway. But looking at the routes I could travel, the decision was quite easy. I drove down "old Route 53". This road weaves through many towns and I was able to stop when needed and get out and walk around. God provided the "right" stopping points exactly when I needed a "sitting break". I enjoyed several store parking lots, a gas station (filled the tank, too), a Duncan Donuts (no donuts, but did buy a small iced coffee). Arrived at my destination without any trouble.

The Parking
Entering into the Speedway, I followed the signs toward Handicap Parking. I, along with several other cars were directed down the wrong road (they had closed that access to the Handicap section, but someone forgot to notify the Security/Police directing traffic.) I and the Vans turned around and then were directed to the correct road.
Upon entering the Handicap parking lot area, the Vans in front of me, turned off into the very first row just past the gravel section. I thought, "that's too far back, I think I'll see if I can get closer to the front, near the main gate". Wasn't sure what would be left, it was almost 8:30 am. But thought I'd at least try to get closer. I drove down row 2 from the front, and noticed an empty spot in row 1. I drove around the corner and PARKED! I couldn't get ANY closer!

God "saved" the spot!
After getting out of my car, the gentleman and his wife parked next to me, returned to their truck from shopping. The gentleman commented on me finding a spot so close, this "late".

He then told me why the spot was empty! A representative from one of the many companies in the nearby tents had parked there FIRST thing this morning. But the gentleman next to me, contacted the Company letting them know that since the car did not have a handicap placard or plate, it would be towed with a hefty fine.

The representative moved his car JUST before I pulled in! Now, if God had not led me down that "wrong road" just a few minutes early, the spot God 'saved' for me, would not have been empty! God knows how to take care of DETAILS!

A Golf Cart
When I finished talking to the gentleman and his wife parked next to me, I finished gathering my stuff out the car, and locked it. I then turned around to head to an Information Booth to ask for a golf cart to take me to the Credential Trailers near Gate 5. But as I turned around, a Golf Cart drove up and asked if I needed a ride! I didn't EVEN make to the blue tent in the picture above! God sent the Golf Cart to me! Again Details!

The Credential Trailer/Hot Pass
If you read my blog post about my first visit to Chicagoland Speedway, you know that there was a problem in locating my tickets. But God used that to provide Pit/Garage Passes for my friend and me. (God's Attention to Details Makes a Blessing Filled Day!) This time however, all the details were in order, and after completing the paperwork, it took me less than a minute to get my HOT PASS and exit the trailer!

Next Golf Cart Ride
After getting my HOT PASS, I asked a Speedway Staff member to call a ride for me. He quickly did so, and a very short time later, a golf cart arrived to drive me to the Garages.

I'll end this post, with my arrival that Garage/Pit area. Please return to read more about my amazing day at Chicagoland Speedway in Part 2.

I'll have to say that CREATING a POSITIVE day
was extremely EASY on Sunday, Sept 16th.
God blessed me abundantly!

Friday, September 14, 2012

God's Gift of Laughter!

But let me run loose and free,  
celebrating God’s great work, 
every bone in my body laughing, singing,
God, there’s no one like you."
 Psalm 35:9, 10 (MSG)

Today did not go as I had planned.
However, it was not a surprise to God.
And He knew that I'd needed a special blessing today!

Today, during a treatment for my pain, we hit a nerve, literally, and it flared up my sciatic pain quite severely. We changed treatments to help settle down the flare. This is not what I had planned for today. I was trying to keep my pain level as low as possible, so that I would be the "best I can be" for Sunday's activity.
However, we did learn something today when we "hit the nerve", it allowed us to pinpoint where a majority of my pain is generating. And that could prove to be very helpful for the treatment I'm receiving on Monday. God's timing is perfect. 

Although, I was "pleased" with the new information, that didn't help with the intense pain. I arrived home, checking my mail as I made my way to my apartment. I tossed the mail on the shelf, the mail would wait until later... looked like junk mail anyway. As I lay on the Daybed trying my tricks to lower my pain, I had to stop and take comfort that this was not a surprise to God. After resting for a bit, I got up and decided to read through the mail. Opened one envelope and found a check for $14.22. At first, I thought it was junk....then I read the letter and started laughing! 

God knew that I needed a GOOD LAUGH today! And I had to stop and think of God's great sense of humor. The check is LEGITIMATE. Come to learn, a company was reviewing what I had paid for my pain medications and I had overpaid. But what I thought was so funny was the DATE I had overpaid the $14.22....was November 27, 2007... YES, FIVE years ago!! 

I laughed. God continues to supply my needs in the MOST creative ways. And once again, I was reminded that God is not limited by TIME! On a day I was feeling a bit low, God knew that I needed to laugh. So, He sent me a gift via a FIVE year old overpayment. God does have a great sense of humor!

Creating a positive day can be done even on the "not so good days" when I take the time to accept God's blessings...especially when He sends them in very creative and unconventional ways!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Changes with a "stamp of approval"

I DO NOT like change. However, I realize that there are times that change is needed. Now, is one of those times in my life when a change was needed. 

For those of you who are new to my blog, I'll try to fill you in the highlights of the past 11 (almost 12) years. 
1. Oct 2000 injured back followed by several years of surgeries... a total of 8 surgeries to be exact....and more procedures than I can count.
2. In June 2010, with the help of my Pain Management Dr I weaned off my pain medications (morphine & Tylenol 4).
3. From August 2010 until February of 2012, I was Vegan and Gluten-free, trying to rid my body of toxins and see if the organic, natural, gluten-free diet would lower my pain level. (It did not.)
4. In February 2012 I started a new diet program offered by my Chiropractor.  (I've lost 57 pounds and have almost reached my healthy lean mass/fat ratio goal.)
5. In March 2012 my Chiropractor started some electro-acupuncture treatments. These treatments have helped increase sensation and feeling in my left leg. 
Since going off pain medications, I've tried a variety of holistic supplements to see if there is something "natural" to lower the pain level. My Chiropractor did find some products with help ease the leg cramps and headaches. However, nothing took the edge off the intense back pain. It was time to revisit my Pain Management Doctor and discuss some options. 

But first, God had to lay some ground work for that visit. In August I attended an annual Vegetarian Festival. At that Festival, God made sure I spoke with a gentleman who told me about a medication used in injections that is made from a plant. I was intrigued and very interested in learning more about this medication.

Yesterday, I met with my Pain Management Doctor to discuss some options to help me deal with the chronic pain. We discussed some medications, which I could take "as needed" for pain control and settled on one to try. We then talked about the "natural drug". It is one she does use. We scheduled that procedure for next week.

Today, started extra early for me, as I went to the hospital to have some tests done. However, during the registration process I learned that I'd be responsible to pay for the tests, and the price tag was too much for me at this time. So, I left not understanding why God allowed this delay, but I know He had a very good reason—but He's not telling.

This afternoon, after my chiropractic appointment, I had to pick up my pain medication and then go to the grocery store. What I'd buy at the grocery store, all depended on the price of the medication. I was EXTREMELY happy that my pain med was UNDER $8.00! Yeah, I could pay with cash.
So, I went to the grocery store with $19.00 still in my pocket.
I bought the veggies I needed, then headed to the fish counter. I looked at the prices and discussed which fish was 'wild'. (I can't eat farm raised due to allergies.) I settled on Cod, and bought enough for dinner. The Fish Monger told me that Cod goes on sale tomorrow... almost half price. It would be nice to put some in the freezer...but not sure it's in the budget.
I was done shopping and went to check out. I watched the total rise as each item was scanned. With each scan...the total got higher...but stopped at $18.74! I had 26¢ to spare. How cool.

As I stated, I don't like change. Yet, it was time to make a change in my pain management. I don't like that I have to go 'back on meds', but know it's a necessity. I think God also gave His "stamp of approval" on my decision by making the medication my Doctor chose to be one of the "cheaper" medications. God then made sure I still have enough cash to pay for my groceries.
Oh, and you remember that Sale on Cod? When I got home and checked the mail, there was a letter and enclosed was some money. God's timing is ALWAYS perfect. 

Creating a positive day includes making changes from time to time. And making changes with "God's stamp of approval" makes it an extra positive day!

Saturday, September 8, 2012


Just had the MOST amazing thing happen!
I was once again reminded of God's attention to details! On Friday, a local food store had a sale on grass-fed ground beef. (Due to my soy/corn allergies, I need to avoid soy/corn fed as much as possible.) So, when there is a SALE, I do my best to "stock up". I bought several packages of the meat.
Today, I divided the meat into single portions, weighing each so that I would have the correct amount for my diet. I figured, that the last two patties would be larger/smaller ..... but I was WRONG. I came out EXACTLY EVEN! Each patty was exactly 6 oz!
God made sure I picked up packages so that I'd be able to have EXACTLY what I needed. What a great example of what God does in my daily life. God gives me exactly what I need in the correct portion for each day! His mercies are NEW each morning. His Grace and Love are available to me throughout the day. God KNOWS exactly what I need and supplies the PERFECT amount.

His attention to details continues to amaze me.
I'm so thankful that He is a DETAIL oriented God!
"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! 
I’m sticking with God (I say it over and over).
He’s all I’ve got left."
 Lamentations 3:22-24 The Message (MSG)
Creating a positive day is about letting God TAKE CARE of the DETAILS... but making sure I TAKE NOTICE of the DETAILS!

I can't believe I did that!

This quote was posted on a friend's FB wall the other day.

"It's better to look back on life and say: 
'I can't believe I did that.'
than to look back and say:
'I wish I did that.'"
As I look back over the past 11, almost 12, years since my back injury I have to say that there have been MANY things to which I can say, "I can't believe I did that!" 

God has SHOWERED me
with the most AMAZING
blessing and experiences!

From a riding in the Good Year blimp (yes I did that!) to being in the Pit lane at a NASCAR Nationwide Race to..... are you ready for what God has planned for me next week???

God has provided the opportunity to BE ON THE PIT BOX during the NASCAR CUP RACE at Chicagoland Speedway! Yes, that's right. I'm so thankful to all the people who have worked to make this very special opportunity possible. But most importantly, I thank God for His amazing blessing.
"I can't believe I did that!"... and the only way I can do those amazing things... is because of God's blessings He sends my way.

I’m thanking You, God, out loud in the streets,
    singing Your praises in town and country.
The deeper Your love, the higher it goes;
    every cloud is a flag to Your faithfulness.
 Psalm 57:9, 10  The Message 

Creating a positive day isn't about what I have planned but rather enjoying all the amazing, wonderful blessings God sends my way, and giving Him the praise and thanks for those blessings.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

God is so Creative!

One thing which I have enjoyed over the past 11 years, since my injury, is seeing all the creative and fun ways God uses to supply my various needs. This week, once again, God supplied in a very fun and creative way. 

Since February of this year, I've lost 56 pounds through a diet program offered by my Chiropractor. Therefore, all the clothes that WERE in my closet were too big. I needed to buy smaller sizes. YEAH!

A local thrift store chain was having a 50% off sale, so I visited several of their stores in the area. WOW... the deals I found! 
I was able to buy: 5 cardigans, 6 dress shirts, 3 pair of dress pants, 2 pairs of jeans (green/black), 1 pair of shorts, 3 light jackets, 1 windbreaker, 1 fall jean jacket, 1 winter jean jacket (lined) and 1 winter coat (with removable liner). And the best part of it all—was the price! All this for UNDER $75.
When I see what I was able t
o buy—and that a new winter coat would have cost that much—WOW!!

Very thankful that God provided a SUPER SALE, so that I could buy some nice clothes and coats for the coming months. The sale was one way God used to supply my needs.

But God was NOT done supplying!
God had a VERY special
SURPRISE waiting for me! 

As I was sorting all the "new" clothes for either the laundry or cleaners, I went through all the pants pockets. And that is when I found the surprise God had waiting for me! In one of the pockets there was a $20 bill! 

I had to stop and realize all the DETAILS that God had to work out, so that He could give me that $20! 

  • the person who donated the pants, had to leave the $20 in the pocket. 
  • each person who inspected the pants at the thrift store, had to "miss" the $20. 
  • not sure if anyone else tried on the pants, but if they did, God had to "keep their hands out of the pockets". 
  • I had to pick that pair of pants to try on... and buy. 

Just thinking of ALL the details that God took care of to give me a surprise of $20 to help me buy 'new' clothes—once again shows His awesome care and love for me. 

When I think of all the creative and fun ways
that God supplies my needs,
it is VERY easy to CREATE a POSITIVE day!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Max Provides MORE Laughs!

Max continues to make me laugh and smile. The other night we were watching the NASCAR race at Bristol Motor Speedway. Max enjoyed watching the Race—on TV this week—from his perch. 

Here are two videos of Max's reaction to the Race. 

In this one, Max tells what he thinks of RACING

In this one, Max tells what he thinks of CAUTIONS
Laughter sure helps anyone create a positive day! And Max provides many reasons to laugh.

Monday, August 13, 2012


PayDay. That phrase has two meaning.

One is good—payday, as in the day you receive payment for services rendered. You get "money"!

The other meaning, means that it's time to "pay-up". The day YOU have to pay has arrived. 

Today is "payday" for me... and no I'm not receiving money... rather I'm "paying-up" for the activity I did the previous day.  I had to opportunity to attend a local, annual Festival, a Car Show, and meet with some staff of a Company which makes a great product. When I chose to do anything, I have to consider.... "Is this activity worth the extra pain?" 

Often, I'm asked, "If it increases the pain, why do it?" Well, I live with chronic pain—it is a CONSTANT. And over the years, I've learned that if I do "nothing" I still hurt. So, when I have the opportunity to do something fun and enjoyable, I do my best to enjoy it. And yes, all the while, I know that I'll have to "pay for it". So, I'm now "paying" for the activity. My headache and pain is severe.

SO was the activity really worth the increase in pain? Let's see....

Pros of "doing something fun":
1. Learned about new products to help me as I continue to work toward being healthier. 
2. Met some nice people at both the Festival and Car Show. 
3. Met the Staff from Sunshine Burger and enjoyed talking with them. 
4. Spent time outside in the beautiful sunshine. 
Cons of yesterday's activities:
1. Increased pain. 
Four to one... I'd say that the activity was worth the increased pain.

So, now that "payday" as arrived, what do I do? Again that comes down to choices. I can focus on the pain and how much I hurt, or I can enjoy the fun memories and continue to enjoy today. 

How long will "payday" last? It varies. It can take a day for my pain level to return to "normal" or it can take a few weeks. One aspect of learning to live with chronic pain is realizing that the pain will get even worse from time to time. And making wise decisions in choosing what to do when. 

Since today is a "payday" for me, I knew that I'd have to change my focus from my pain to something better. So, I have been listening to some great music this morning (Bryan Duncan, Damaris Carbaugh, The Ball Brothers, to name a few). And I listened to some Sermons on Ecclesiastes (Calvary Baptist Church)

"By day the Lord directs his love, at night his song is with me—a prayer to the God of my life." Psalm 42:8 (NIV)

On "payday" the key for me is to keep my focus off the pain, and focus on the positive and uplifting! On some paydays, that is more difficult. I've learned the when I change my focus—payday (having to owe), turns into a payday—receiving blessings from God!

Even on "payday" I can create a positive day... if I make the right choice in changing my focus!