Miracles in the midst of Caregiving

“Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid … for the Lord thy God … will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.”

Deuteronomy 31:6

imagesI believe in miracles.  Let me tell you about one. Continue reading

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Success meets up with Disabilities

imagesAccording to Michal Hyatt, former Chairman and CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishers and current author and blogger, defines success as responsiveness to one’s environment.  He states that quickly one responds to situations will be  measure of how well they accomplish tasks.  Follow through, for Hyatt, is a large indicator of success. Continue reading

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Your Personal Values of Faith are Important as a Caregiver

“Your beliefs don’t make you a better person, your behavior does.”

personal values of faithPersonal values are important, but…

The person who tells you that he is kind to all, then who quickly turns around in the check out line to give a piece of his mind to that mother who can’t control her kid as he pushed the cart into his ankles…is just one of many examples of the unnecessary stress we have because our lifestyles don’t mirror our beliefs.

While it may be natural to say, we all do it, it becomes a big problem when you are a caregiver trying to assist your clients towards better lifestyles.  In my previous post, I gave the example of a group advocating for their clients to define their own goals, but with the unspoken caveat of as long as it is ‘doing it my way’.

So, just how is your value system influencing those people in your charge? Continue reading

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Another Look at Moses and His Speech Impediment

mosesMoses had a speech impediment!  The leader of the Hebrew nation had problems in communication:

Moses said to the Lord, “Pardon your servant, Lord. I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor since you have spoken to your servant. I am slow of speech and tongue.”

Exodus 4:10 NASB

 Did you ever wonder how good of a leader Moses was BECAUSE he had a speech impediment?   Here, let me list out some of the reasons that I lean this direction: Continue reading

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Anxious Thoughts from 30,000 Feet!

Screen Shot 2014-03-24 at 6.27.37 AMAre you trying to suppress those worrisome thoughts or are you dealing with them?  Well, you are not alone.

Though more than 18% of Americans over 18 years have some anxiety disorder, there are a greater number if individuals who just plain worry.

And worry can eat you alive. Upset stomachs. Sweaty palms.  Heart palpitations. Shortness of breath.

I know people like this -as I am sure you do too.  But, by practicing skills such as deep breathing techniques, anxiety can be lessened …if not eliminated.

I speak from experience.   I don’t like to fly, and am currently  inside a Delta Airlines flight 2110, coming back vacation visiting family Continue reading

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Coping with Speech Impediments

I want to mix it up a bit with this post, making it a bit controversial.  The following video is about a lady who speech impediment is helped through using marijuana.

The question I have is this:  Does her improvement with her speech impediment justify the use of marijuana?

Here is the video

 

As you know, my desire is for others to understand that there is a way out from under your disability, but does ‘anything go’?

Here is another way to address this: If you have a friend who is struggling with a speech impediment, would you suggest the use of marijuana?

 

Blessings on your journey,

 

-Michael

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What Can I do with My Life?

live2That is a powerful question to ask because it can imply that you don’t see yourself as a victim of circumstances; but, as one who is willing to make changes towards success!

This type of mental resolve works for anyone! Continue reading

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Do Our Words Cripple us when address Disabilities?

social barrierThe other day I ran across an article that touted social barriers as being more formidable than one’s actual disabilities.  It made some key points, at which I flinched, both because of their truthfulness, and because I have also struggled on how best to handle this issue in my writings. Continue reading

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Effectively Dealing with Struggles

indexI created another worksheet to help people work through struggles.  The big picture here is that there is a way through these difficult times, and if we are watchful, we will learn from our trials. Continue reading

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Beyond Suffering Workshop

imagesA couple of Saturday’s ago, I took the opportunity to attend a full day seminar called ‘Beyond Suffering”

There are several  things I learned that I want to pass along: Continue reading

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Disability Brings Direction

 Choose a good reputation over great riches; being held in high esteem is better than silver or gold.

Proverbs 22:1 New Living Translation

imagesOur nation’s integrity is rightly being called on the carpet.  Since 1989, the Center for Public Intregrity has devoted its energies to revealing “abuses of power, correction and betrayal of public trust”.

Our private sector has not done much better as one needs to only read the headlines, or listen to the daily news.  Consider one recent example of a musician who seemed to be waffling in his claim that he was not deaf –and thus was dethroned at the Oscars.

The reasons I bring up this issue here on my site is to tell you that as you strive to overcome your struggles, don’t loose face.  At the end of the day, you will be held accountable for what you have done or failed to you to make your life –and the life of others- better. Continue reading

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2 Lessons Learned From Anosognosia

2 Lessons Learned From Anosognosia

The other day, I came across a new word, Anosognosia.  It is one of those $2.50 words and basically means ‘a lack of insight’.  Some individuals with mental illness manifest this as evidence by their poor judgment over taking medications.  It is helping me understand that when some individuals just don’t ‘get it’, it can well be more than their lack of education.

 

images-2Anosognosia is more than a refusing to understand, but is a malfunction of the brain.  It is anatomical.

I recently read that 50% of individuals with schizophrenia and 40% of those with bipolar disorder report moderate to severe impairment in their awareness of their illness. One good way we can help people having anosognosia is by ‘being there’.  Support them.   Don’t give up on them.

And, while some of you may be breathing a sigh of relief that this malady has not attached itself to you, I want to posit the fact that all of us to some extent have poor insight… Continue reading

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Life Has a Mind of its Own

FutureI so remember my mother telling me that ‘life happens when you are making plans’, and though she was not the first to say this, the wisdom from her lips is powerful, and here is why… Continue reading

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Are You Still Vested?

imagesAre you still vested in your hopes and dreams for you life?  I know it is hard at some times to press on, but consider that part of the reason for your struggle is because these are your dreams, and unless you take the initiative to move ahead NO ONE will help you BECAUSE no one will know how.

 

That can be empowering if you think about it. For instance, there was a time in my life that I was reasonably content to live with my speech impediment because I had a sister who understood me and a family who loved me. But, as the years went along, this simply wasn’t not good enough.  I became restless, wanting more because I wanted others to understand me without my big sis “running ‘interference for me, yet, it was hard…real hard:  going to speech therapy while still being ridiculed for talking ‘funny’.  Though and option for me was to just socially isolate to avoid interactions with others, I wanted more and so I pressed through.

 

And, you can too.  Regardless of the struggle, once you press in and press through you will be energized even more to continue to excel in your life pursuits.

 

So, here are some practical ways to keep vested in your dreams:

  1. 1.  Find someone to support you, someone who will help you stay focused, especially when you are wavering in your focus.
  2. 2.  Do something.  Regardless how seemingly small, do something beneficial for yourself or others in order to reaffirm that regardless of ‘how you feel’, you are still important.
  3. 3.  Look at your goal frequently.  This will be some good reflection time for you to realize the validity of your goal, while helping you hone it.

My friend, God is vested in your life; is there anything that is holding you back?

Faithful is He who calls you,

and He also will bring it to pass.

1 Thessalonians 5:24 New American Standard Bible

 

Blessings on your journey

 

-Michael

 

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A Story of an Overcomer

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Jessica Pabst

The other day, Jessica Pabst contacted me to ask if I would help promote her book,  Life From a Sitting Down Perspective.  And, after exchanging several emails, I thought it a good idea to show to you that others are continuing to face their disability and to overcome it.

You just may be able to identify with Jessica’s life, and because of this you may find something in the book that could help you.

Please let me know what you think about it.

Blessings on your journey!

-Michael

 

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Living My Dream

imagesBack in November, and, then, just two weeks ago, I had opportunity to live out my dream a bit more when I preached at the Lake Sunapee Baptist Church in Sunapee, NH on the message on disabilities and the church.

This church is just another glimmer of hope for those with disabilities as it is better preparing herself to welcome into its fellowship those with disabilities.

I think that when the church begins to see people with disabilities as people first and foremost, then the church will be better able to view these folks as individuals whom God has gifted “for the common good” as INDISPENSABLE to the body of Christ.

When we, as the church, begin to get past that “elephant in the room”, aka, the disability, we will start to catch a truer meaning of what the body of Christ is all about.

When we, as the church, step through the stickiness of the theology of suffering, to see that EVEN IN THE MIDST OF SUFFERINGS gifts are still manifested, we will begin to appreciate the strengths of each person in the body of Christ.

Yes, the problems that come about because of disabilities are real and must be addressed, but let’s do so in the context of the much bigger picture of God’s redemptive plan: Salvation in Christ through faith.  Let’s let God help us work out the specifics on being more inclusive towards those with disabilities as we keep our focus on that bigger picture.

So, what is keeping you, my friend, from helping your own church discover God’s heart for the disabled?

Let go.  Let God.  Be obedient.  Step out in faith.

Blessings on your journey

 

 

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Struggling to Progress

“Without A Struggle There Can Be No Progress”     

 imagesFrederick Douglas was so right when these words were spoken: “without a struggle, there can be no progress”.  And, while you and I may well agree with him, when we are going through a struggle, there -at times- STILL can seem like there is no light at the end of the tunnel.

And, because of that, I want to offer some words of inspiration and motivation that you and I can be come more mindful of so that the next struggle we face could become, not only, less intense, but even a stepping stone towards progress.

Let me explain…

Continue reading

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Dreamers Needed

Then Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers, they hated him even more.

Genesis 37:5 NAS

Joseph’s dream was that he was going to rule over his brothers and father.  The sibling rivalry really kicked in after this! But the rest of the story is empowering and has a lesson to be learned Continue reading

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What Do I Want to Do with My Life Test

 

 what do I do with my life testThis is only a test. If it were the real thing you would have been given instructions.

For too many years, I bounced around from one occupation to another.  Though I was always gainfully employed, I did not always like my work.   I made the best of situations, always looking at what I could learn from a job or learn about myself, but the employment I had did not make me sing much.   Ever been there? Continue reading

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Rethinking Disabilities

I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; wonderful are Your works, and my soul knows it very well.

Psalm 139:14 New American Standard

imagesHere’s a quandary for us:  if God made us and His Word says this about us what does that mean for the person who was born with a disability?  Can -or should- a person with disability and be able to say “I am fearfully and wonderfully made”? Continue reading

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