good feeling: the realization that going to bed crying is no longer a common occurrence. 

good feeling: t…


The Vine and the Branches

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.”

– John 15

The Vine and th…

Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers. Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.

My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.

Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirrorand, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it—he will be blessed in what he does.

– James 1

it’s a cold and it’s a broken hallelujah

it’s a cold an…

2 Corinthians 12: I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

2 Corinthians 1…

Psoriatic arthritis.

I was told that Enbrel’s patent expired in 2012 and that then, a generic might appear and might be cheaper or whatever, but apparently their patent got extended another 16 years. I really wonder how this is going to affect me. It makes me want to cry just to think about not having that medicine, and what that might mean, especially now, with my weird foot. This is why I need to focus on gratitude and in being content in every circumstance, because I can do everything through him who gives me strength.

It’s just so hard to have it and then have it taken away from me. I hate the health insurance industry.

Psoriatic arthr…

A discipline like fasting can be very helpful to develop gratitude, because when I fast I learn that it’s possible for me to have an unfulfilled desire and survive. We live in a world that says you can’t survive with unfulfilled desires. When I fast I learn it’s possible for me to have an unfulfilled desire and survive, and eventually it’s possible to have an unfulfilled desire and still have joy and gratitude, and maybe one day I will no longer live at the mercy of unfulfilled desires.

Maybe one day, through the power of God, through practices like fasting, I will learn that a human being is not just a bundle of desires waiting to be filled up. See, we live with this illusion – if I just had _________. You fill in the blank. The house I want, the car I want, the clothes I want, the spouse I want, the marriage I want, the kids I want, the career I want, the success I want. If I just had that, then I’d be grateful.

It’s not true, and it’s especially not true for followers of Christ. Because if we’re not grateful now… we have the gift of life, we’re children of God, we have salvation through Christ, we have a community of faith, we have guidance and power through the Holy Spirit.

But here’s the illusion – “If I had the gift of life, if I was a child of God, if I had salvation through Christ, if I had a community of faith, if I had the guidance and power of the Spirit – plus a really cool car, plus a really nice house, plus whatever.” The illusion is, then I’d be a grateful person.

We really need to think this one through. We can go on filling in the blank for the rest of our lives, and it will never be enough. Circumstances and a whole lot of nice stuff cannot create a grateful person.

We must humbly become a student of Jesus and learn to give thanks at all times, to become a grateful person.

A discipline li…

Sometimes it feels like my stability is just hanging by a little thread, able to break at any moment. I don’t even mean emotional stability, or mental or spiritual stability, I mean like functioning in the world. Like I’m balancing so many things and have so many tasks that I’m just going to break in half and cease to exist.

Sometimes it fe…

God is in control, he knows what is best for me and he has my best interests in mind. I need only to trust him and do the best I can where I am planted.

God is in contr…

Psalm 28:

3 Do not drag me away with the wicked, 
   with those who do evil, 
who speak cordially with their neighbors 
   but harbor malice in their hearts. 
4 Repay them for their deeds 
   and for their evil work; 
repay them for what their hands have done 
   and bring back on them what they deserve.

 5 Because they have no regard for the deeds of the LORD 
   and what his hands have done, 
he will tear them down 
   and never build them up again.

 6 Praise be to the LORD, 
   for he has heard my cry for mercy. 
7 The LORD is my strength and my shield; 
   my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. 
My heart leaps for joy, 
   and with my song I praise him.

Psalm 28:3 Do …