Living With Gusto, Mimi's Messages

Tell Your Story!

 

 

Tell your story! Seriously, once you share the hard stuff, several things happen:
* it’s not as devastating because it’s no longer hidden
* you actually “hear” it as told to someone else and often make more sense of it
* your story helps someone
* you take away the paralyzing power of what happened to you, and find redemptive power in the telling
* you look back from a new perspective, perhaps more wisdom, or compassion for the person you were.

We don’t stay the same. Though your story may not change, how you respond to it can. You may gain insight. Or resolve.

I’ll tell you right now that I KNOW you have been through challenges, or hard times, or good times, and that you learned something to either NOT repeat again, or that helped you survive, or made life bearable.

Yes, my dear, you can glean from those things. AND, sometimes realizing that our story is valuable happens as we are just telling someone about something that happened in our life.

It doesn’t have to be big. It is usually just us living our lives, daily working through.

But, when we share those daily walks with another person, somehow it becomes even more real in the telling. We realize that we were (are) powerful and creative problem solvers, and so many other things.

And the person listening says that they are so glad to hear us tell it (our story),

or that they never thought of that,

or that it’s amazing to realize that they weren’t the only one…..

There is so much power in our stories, in our lives.

So, don’t be afraid to share your story. You will find others with chapters of the same. A kinship. A support.

And it matters.

Much love, Mimi 

Inspiration, Words To Help

Onion Layers

 So I saw this meme on the internet, and thought I’d comment about it.

And then God begins to peel the layers off and heal in between each so that your heart can once again love and receive love. 

It’s a real process, for sure. It takes time–for me, several decades.

It’s not a pleasant experience. At times you weep. But the freedom and healing are worth the work it takes to look inward, consider the wounds, allow God to stir up your emotions, and allow Him to have the things that wounded you. And to replace the wounding with healing.

He is the healer. He wants you whole and free from the bondage of those things that you carry, those things that cause you to feel wounded.

Hugs and love,

Passionista Mimi

Inspiration

Can We Trust God?

How do you know that someone is worthy of your trust? Most likely it’s because they have proven themselves to you: they are dependable, they have kept your secret, they are loyal and supportive of you.

It takes time, usually, to establish trust in someone. And a kind of “testing”. 

God knows that it isn’t easy for us to trust Him. We are weak-hearted and easily disappointed by people and the events in our lives. We are constantly being let down.

But God is faithful. He is trustworthy.

He cannot lie:

God is not a man that he should tell or act a lie.” Numbers23:19

He who is the Glory of Israel will not lie, nor will he change his mind, for he is not human that he should change his mind.” 1 Samuel 15:29

He does not change:

I the Lord do not change.” Malachi 3:6 

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.” Hebrews 13:8

There are so many scriptures that talk about God’s faithfulness. However, this is an area that often takes personal experience to believe, not just taking someone’s (or the Bible’s) word for it. God’s faithfulness is proven during the course of our life, through provision or protection, and especially deliverance. To me, that one is the first and best proof of His love and faithfulness.

He delivers us:

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”1 John 1:9

We can have absolute confidence that God forgives us. If he couldn’t he wouldn’t be God. Perhaps it takes faith for you to believe that. But let me say that I have experienced His forgiveness, the cleansing of my heart, and the outpouring of his love. It’s not all in my head. It’s a precious way of life that brings me joy.

As far as God’s proving his faithfulness?

He shouldn’t have to because he is God and God is faithful. Period. But yet he does. Over and over to us. There have been times when I don’t even realize he delivered or provided or protected until years later. And when I have those “ah ha” moments it’s pretty incredible.

I think, “Oh that’s what was going on behind the scenes. That is what God was doing!” And my heart fills with gratitude and praise. There are many instances in our lives like this (for example, when I didn’t marry the person who turned out to be of questionable character). We don’t even realize that God has touched a moment in our lives and taken care of something for us. Or sometimes we DO! Like when I was able to pass between two cars that were destined to collide at an intersection. Whew! I praised God for sure while I was shaking in my boots!

You CAN put your trust in God.

“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” James 1:17 

I hope you will risk it. Try him out and see if he doesn’t prove himself to you. I dare ya!

 

Inspiration, Mimi's Messages

Focus On The Light

 

focus on his light

From the book Indestructible by Blake Healy, these sentences really grabbed my attention:

“The enemy is fighting to get you to see things his way because

a simple act can release a massive amount of God’s goodness,

leaving a mark that can last for generations.”

 

Satan does not want us to realize the power that is ours through Jesus!

When we act as “Jesus with skin on” to those around us,

reach out a hand to the hurting, 

when we pray in the mighty name of Jesus and foundations shake,

when we stop hatred and meanness,

when we cuddle a child in need of love……

the plans of the enemy are brought to a halt!

 

“There is no place on this earth that God has not

placed the potential for good.”

 

No place is so “dark” that the power of Jesus cannot break through and shed glorious light! Never give up on someone or a place or a situation!

 

“If we know that God is always ready to do good no matter where we are, then instead of fighting the darkness, we will focus on honoring the glory we see in others, perpetuating the light.”

 

Oh friend, He is waiting to do good. God doesn’t need us at all. But for some reason He chooses to use us as vessels of His light, love, and life. Never think that you are not enough to have an impact for God’s kingdom, or that your calling is too inconsequential or small. It matters! If God has put a niggle in your heart to do something then do it! The rest is up to Him. 

For instance, this blog is not bringing in money, nor do I want it to. I don’t have many who follow me or even read what I write. But I’ve had to come to grips with what my purpose really is. God told me to write, and I believe that those who are supposed to read these simple words do.

So what about you? Have you been hesitant to do something, thinking it doesn’t matter anyway? Hey, are YOU reading this? Then you know the power of one person shining their light. 

And by the way, there is no small act of kindness. It all matters. Just sayin’.

So keep reaching out, touching lives, praying, shining light!!

I’m with you,

Mimi

Inspiration

But How Can I Fly?

Hey there. How are you doing? Are things a bit rough right now?

If you are stressed and worried, it may not help, but you are not alone in that. A lot of us are struggling. Trying to find “what’s next?”.

Sometimes I have dark days. I’m sure you have days like that too.

I wanted to share this with you today. I wrote it, not really very long ago, while I was in the midst of a deeply emotional and spiritual turmoil. I was thoroughly beaten and discouraged and felt pretty raw inside. 

I decided to publish it now because, well, I’m just supposed to.

 
They say, “Fly into your dreams.”

But how can I fly

with wings missing feathers

and bearing tattered edges?

How can I fly with a heart that weighs

heavily like stone?

Lift off is impossible.

And how can I dream when the smokey haze of

night terrors suffocates me at dawn?

I’ve reached the ragged end of strength.

The dark hole has blinded me.

Flight is impossible, but for You, God.

You promised to carry me.

To give me wings like an eagle.

It’s up to You, my strength and the lifter of my head.

And then, rescued from the pit by Your hand, once again will I soar. ­­­­­­­­­

Perhaps you have been where I was. Maybe you are right now.

Maybe it will help, knowing that someone else survived a time like that.

Many in our world (maybe even you?) are in the pit, feeling hopeless, in turmoil, betrayed, and scared.

Where, or in whom, do you place your hope during these hard times?

My hope is not in myself. I’m way too fragile and inadequate.  But my hope is in God, the maker of heaven and earth. Psalm 124:8

But you, Lord, are a shield around me,
    my glory, the One who lifts my head high.

Psalm 3:3

Like an eagle that stirs up its nest,

that hovers over its young,

He spread His wings and caught them,

He carried them on His pinions. 

Deuteronomy 32:11

 

I waited patiently for the Lord;

and He inclined unto me and heard my cry.

Psalm 40:1

 

In my distress I called upon the Lord;

I cried out to my God,

And from His temple [in the heavens] He heard my voice;

My cry for help came into His ears.

2 Samuel 22:7

 

I pray that you find your hope in the Lord. He is dependable and faithful. This, I know.

Much love, Mimi

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Honest, Keepin' It Real, Mimi's Messages

Quit Yer Yappin’ And Pray!

Fear divides us. And I know that there are so many things that cause fear right now. I’m not down-playing the dire situation our world is in. But honestly, how does it help us to bash people, to write ugly comments about our leaders, to become hateful about certain people?

Y’all, our strongest weapon is prayer! God is the source of our strength, our faith, and our love. And He is the One who will bring an end to this virus. It IS scary. Do I worry? Sometimes. Do I doubt? Sometimes. But do I pray? All the time.

Did you know that you can keep up a steady stream of communication with God as you go throughout your day? You do not have to “assume the position” on your knees or with hands clasped. You can position your heart toward God. He has promised to be listening and waiting. He is a wonderful, attentive listener.

I like to focus part of my prayers (actually most) on thankfulness, because it really clears my mind and puts things into perspective. Perhaps you think it’s easier for me because I have food and shelter, and my family is healthy. My heart goes out to those of you who are heartbroken and struggling. It really does, and if I could help you, believe me I would.

So your thankfulness may sound more like this, “Thank you God for your love. Thank you for dying for me so I have the hope of a joyful life here on earth, and the promise of being with you when I die. Thank you for the sacrifice of your son, so I may become a child of yours. Thank you for the air I breathe, the beautiful world you created, the sun and rain, and the peace you bring to my heart.”

As I go throughout my day, my heart is turned toward God. I ask Him for wisdom dealing with my kids. I ask Him to provide for us financially. I ask Him to turn my worry into faith in His provision. And I ask Him to protect the mamas and unborn babies He has assigned me to pray for.

I thank Him for my washer and dryer. I thank Him that my children can tell me they love me. I thank Him for you, my readers, and ask that my words will touch and help someone’s heart.

Y’all, this whole blog thing is for YOU. It is an outpouring of love, and my desire to help.

So I do pray for my readers. Consider yourself blessed. 🙂 

And if the shoe fits…….try a little less yappin’ and a little more praying.

All said in love.

Passionista Mimi

Inspiration, Keepin' It Real

Life Ain’t Always Sunshine and Roses

So here’s the deal.

It’s NOT always sparkle and shine in my life.

There are days like this week when I am burdened for a precious friend and feel helpless in the situation. When I am a bit tired of working, parenting alone, being this age with kids, being indoors, wanting something fun, loneliness, just the keeping on keeping on.

And there are some days when the only prayer I can form is, “Oh God, oh God, oh God!”

That is the real truth, folks. I get in those places too.

I thought maybe you should know.

I never want you to feel as if I downplay your pain. Or suggest that your difficult situation can just go away “poof”.

But I post the positive things I do because SOMEONE needs to read them.

And in my inner spirit those things are ME. They are what I do to keep doing.

I smile, I pray, I spend time being thankful, I reach out to others, I help others if at all possible….

All these things help to center me and bring the “yuck” back into perspective.

I do know that when we fill our brains with positive thoughts,

we attract more positive energy to ourselves.

And that is what being thankful is about.

That is what “speaking to the mountain” (see previous post) is about.

We actually DO have a choice in how we spend our focus/energy.

And when I’m in a funk, I choose to spend mine by rejoicing in all the good I see around me.

Being thankful for the many, many good things in my life.

And realizing that these funks don’t last forever.

Two things I know–God is always faithful, and the sun will eventually shine!

 

This is re-posted from three years ago! Really applies to today. 

Be well, safe, and blessed in these crazy time!

Much love and big hugs, 

Passionista

Inspiration, Keepin' It Real, Raw Honest Brave

A Call to Prayer

There’s a sense of urgency in my spirit this morning. 

We need to pray for our nation!

We have become acutely aware of how helpless we really are.

We need God!

Pray that God will pour out His mercy,

His grace, His love, and cover our nation with it.

The world too.

But today, it’s our nation that needs urgent, heart-felt prayers.

If you are one who prays,

please do that with total abandon, urgency, full commitment.

There’s a shifting going on.

There is a power moving among us.

God’s power! God has commanded His people to pray.

He said that if we will He will hear from heaven and heal our land.

We must, as a nation, turn from our wicked ways.

There is so much evil in our country.

Bad things happening. Besides the virus.

Please pray that God would move in a mighty way.

We are the nation that is “one nation under God’.

It’s time to rise up to that calling!

Only God can heal our nation.

Only God can bring life and truth to our darkness.

Won’t you join with me for the next several days and

pray with an urgency that you’ve never had before?

Won’t you begin to take back our nation for God through prayer? 

“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”  2 Chronicles 7:14

This is not a “pretty” verse in the Bible.

It holds a condition–but also a promise.

We need to stand in the gap before the Lord for our nation,

repenting of the evil and sin that has taken us over.

This is not the time to say “it’s not me”

and just wring our hands about how dire the situation is.

It is time to TAKE ACTION!

Go to our knees before mighty God and

entreat Him to turn our nation around.

To heal our land. 

You may not like this.

You may not like me.

But this is what is on my heart and mind today.

And I am compelled to write it.

Do what you will. I pray that you will take it to heart.

Now is your time.

 

 

Just know that I am there with you.

Much love and prayer, Passionista

 

Living With Gusto

Strength: You’ve Got It

“You never know how strong you are until being strong

is the only choice you have.”

Bob Marley

Most of us have been through things that have shown us—beyond our imaginings—what we are capable of. As we think back on those horrible days we are in awe of our perseverance and accomplishment, wondering how we ever survived. But we are strong, and we rise to meet need as the warriors we are.

I have a close friend who has walked through some of the most difficult things life has to offer. A particularly bad season was when she was making the drive to Detroit several times a week to take her infant son to Children’s Hospital. This went on for several months. She barely saw her husband and other infant son and was physically and emotionally worn out—the kind of worn out that trying to sleep in the hospital and fighting for your baby’s life will bring. The kind of exhaustion that causes you to nod off at the red light. When I exclaimed that I didn’t know how she’d done it, her response was, “What option did I have?”

And she was correct. Sometimes we just don’t have a choice and have to keep putting one foot in front of another.  And somehow the strength comes when needed.

One of the most grueling seasons in my life was during the time my mom lived with us while battling cancer. That was difficult enough, but my husband also had two back surgeries which put him out-of-commission on pain meds (so I was basically single-parenting), I was managing my mom’s in-home caregivers, both she and my husband were making frequent trips to the hospital, my two special needs 4 year olds were not sleeping, or if they were my daughter’s feeding pump would jam—sometimes two and three times a night, and I was rising at 4:30 each morning to get everyone ready so I could go teach my second graders—on very little sleep. Oh, and did I mention I was older—fifty-two, but who was counting? Let me tell you, I’m not sure how I ever survived those months!

mimis tea bag

 

So how do we find the strength to make it through these times? Looking back it seems impossible, but somehow I found the strength to do everything that was needed. I know that I prayed a lot! My prayer was often only, “Oh God! Oh God!”.  (Good thing He can read between the lines.) And I talked with my close friend, who gave me amazing support.

Some women turn to yoga, meditating, or exercise to calm and restore. Some attend support groups, community functions, or read. Sometimes just talking to a friend will help us see perspective and cause us to realize how strong we are and how far we have come.

Talking out loud can help us process our next steps, or just receive the support from another that gives us strength. Never discount how powerful helping to bear someone’s burden can be!

It’s important for women to gather, share, and support each other. Women are social creatures and amazing things happen when they gather and hang out together.

Don’t be afraid to tell your “warrior” stories to others. You may well inspire someone and help them gain strength in their journey. Yes, we may wish we’d done some things differently or better, but in the long run we did the best we could at the time. And most likely we were amazing! And look how strong we have become!

Hang in there Warrior Woman. And share your story.

Much love, Mimi

This post was originally an article written for Women2Women Magazine, of which I’m the editor. You may view our digital magazine online to read other great articles.

 

Inspiration

He Will Heal The Brokenhearted

A friend of mine is going through a heartbreaking time. I made this for her today, and thought I’d post for anyone else who needs to hear it. The “He” in this quote is God, and the words are from the Bible.

Several years ago, when I was enduring the same kind of emotional devastation she is, knowing this promise kept me sane. I reminded God often that He said He would heal my broken heart, and that He promised He wouldn’t break me (by allowing more than I could bear, or by making me walk through it alone).

On the other side of it now, I will testify that God indeed healed my heart and has given me joy. He walked with me through every difficult decision and day of weeping. And today, He used me to encourage another sister who is where I was. He is there for you, too.

I haven’t posted in quite a while, so someone needs this, or I wouldn’t have put it here today. 

for Katee

If it speaks to you, feel free to print it off and put it where you will see it as a reminder. God will see you through.

Much love and hugs, Mimi