Monday, May 23, 2011

Personal Experience With Depression

I have personally suffered from depression for years and took anti-depressants for more than 10 years. I have struggled, seeking answers.

Three years ago I was able to wean off of the anti-depressants (not without fear and trepidation!) by starting a daily regimen of Omega-3 supplements along with 5HTP capsules. The 5HTP helps me get into a deep sleep and stay there through the night, as sleep problems many times contribute to depression.

I highly encourage anyone suffering with depression or mental illness NOT to make anti-depressants and medications their first option. Seek to find the SOURCE, rather than just treating symptoms. This is what most anti-depressant drugs do: treat symptoms.

Seeing a naturopathic doctor helped me as well, to check for food allergies, etc. Sometimes a gluten or wheat allergy wreaks havoc on someone’s system! Until someone reaches “bottom,” he/she may be unwilling to change his/her lifestyle and diet, but trust me, once you reach that all-time low, you’re willing to try just about anything. It seems to me that it’s better to try healing your body naturally with the things that God created (herbs, vitamins, etc.) than to immediately jump to a synthetic solution. Too many times the cure proves worse than the disease in the medical arena. (I speak with all due respect to medical professionals. I believe there is definitely a time and place for their services.)

Another thing that helped me is an exercise regimen. I definitely see a difference in my mood and a lack of feeling hopeless when I’m exercising or active in some way.

Most important of all–-and above any natural health or fitness solution-–JESUS is THE medicine! Singing and choosing to be with people (instead of isolating) are areas that helped me also. But THE most important is the input of GOD’S WORD daily. Jesus IS the WORD (John 1:1). Play Scripture music. Play the Bible on CD. Read it. Post print-outs of Scripture around the house. Make your own songs up out of the Scriptures that are meaningful to you. Meditate and saturate yourself with Scripture!!

The Apostle Paul had a "thorn in the flesh, a messenger of satan to buffet" him. He asked God three times to remove it, but God told him that His grace was "sufficient." This is how I have come to accept my battle with depression. I do all the things that God has allowed me to find that help me, but if I fight a day or two here and there when I feel depressed, I accept it that God still wants me to remember I need to run to Him first. He is my hiding place (Psalm 32:7); not my Omega-3 supplements or exercise, or anything else outside of Him that I have found to help me. Those findings are good and important, and I believe they are answers from heaven. However, when it comes down to it, HE is all I need. HE is my all in all.

...And when it comes down to it, I have a choice. 

‎"Lincoln once said that most people are about as happy as they decide to be. In the end, you may have to pray for the grace and courage to decide to say "yes" to life and, by so doing, prove to the world that you have indeed been saved: "by grace through faith." To make such a decision is not to be a Pollyanna. It is willing to will the will of God." ~ Tony Campolo

If you would like more info that I have found  in my search for help with depression, please feel free to message me.

From the Holy Place to the Holy of Holies

Roy Hession's words in Shadow to Substance resonate with me...

There was a time in my Christian life when I did not seem to have problems in my relationship wtih others. I imagined I went through the world smiling at everybody, with everybody smiling back at me. There were problems, all right but I was blissfully unaware of them... [when I went from the Holy Place of the Christian life to the Holy of Holies], I found there were many things in my attitudes to others that needed my repentance and God's forgiveness, and I discovered that not everybody had been smiling at me; they had seen and noted and remembered the wrongs I had done and the wounds I had inflicted. And I had the humiliation of having to take the place of the wrong one on this, that, and the other matter, as I entered the Holiest.

It's true. When we decide to go from just plain "living the Christian life" to living in the Holy of Holies, choosing complete consecration to God--total yieldedness in every area He reveals, we find so many things that used to be acceptable to us are no longer acceptable. We find that, as Roy Hession said, we may have hurt people in the past without knowing it.

As a teen, I carried around in the front of my Bible a little pamphlet entitled, "Others May; You Cannot." [See article below.] To others it may have seemed rigid. And to be honest, when I was a teen and a young adult, I harboured a great deal of pride in my heart at being "right" and living "righteously." I had a great deal of growing up to do--and still do! Yet, the older I get, the less I seem to know! The more questions I have!

Nevertheless, we all know that the baby should not be thrown out with the bathwater. A desire for holiness naturally brings forth a different kind of living. Sometimes it's viewed as radical. Crazy. Ridiculous. Extreme.

By G.D. Watson

Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any [man] will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. ~ Matthew 16:24-25

If God has called you to be truly like Jesus in all your spirit, He will draw you into a life of crucifixion and humility. He will put on you such demands of obedience that you will not be allowed to follow other Christians. In many ways, He seems to let other good people do things which He will not let you do.
Others who seem to be very religious and useful may push themselves, pull wires, and scheme to carry out their plans, but you cannot. If you attempt it, you will meet with such failure and rebuke from the Lord as to make you sorely penitent.
Others can brag about themselves, their work, their successes, their writings, but the Holy Spirit will not allow you to do any such thing. If you begin to do so, He will lead you into some deep mortification that will make you despise yourself and all your good works.
Others will be allowed to succeed in making great sums of money, or having a legacy left to them, or in having luxuries, but God may supply you only on a day-to-day basis, because He wants you to have something far better than gold, a helpless dependence on Him and His unseen treasury.
The Lord may let others be honored and put forward while keeping you hidden in obscurity because He wants to produce some choice, fragrant fruit for His coming glory, which can only be produced in the shade.
God may let others be great, but keep you small. He will let others do a work for Him and get the credit, but He will make you work and toil without knowing how much you are doing. Then, to make your work still more precious, He will let others get the credit for the work which you have done; this to teach you the message of the Cross, humility, and something of the value of being cloaked with His nature.
The Holy Spirit will put a strict watch on you, and with a jealous love rebuke you for careless words and feelings, or for wasting your time, which other Christians never seem distressed over.

So make up your mind that God is an infinite Sovereign and has a right to do as He pleases with His own, and that He may not explain to you a thousand things which may puzzle your reason in His dealings with you.

God will take you at your word. If you absolutely sell yourself to be His slave, He will wrap you up in a jealous love and let other people say and do many things that you cannot. Settle it forever; you are to deal directly with the Holy Spirit, He is to have the privilege of tying your tongue or chaining your hand or closing your eyes in ways which others are not dealt with. However, know this great secret of the Kingdom: When you are so completely possessed with the Living God that you are, in your secret heart, pleased and delighted over this peculiar, personal, private, jealous guardianship and management of the Holy Spirit over your life, you will have found the vestibule of heaven, the high calling of God.
G.D.Watson (1845-1924) was a Wesleyan Methodist minister and evangelist based in Los Angeles. His evangelistic campaigns took him to England, the West Indies, New Zealand, Australia, Japan and Korea. He also wrote several books. Source:

If I'm going to be extreme about anything, I want it to be in the area of my love for God. Seriously, when you're in love, you are radical about the person with whom you're in love, are you not? Does my life show that I am crazy about God? That I am radically different than those who are not crazy about God? How does it come out?

I remember that, when I first fell in love with my Peter, he was constantly on my mind. I talked about him; ate, drank, breathed, dreamed PETER! Nothing and no one else could take his spot.

Think of how "different from the norm" my life would be if Jesus Christ was constantly on my mind. What if I talked about Him; ate, drank, breathed, dreamed JESUS CHRIST?! How radically different my life would be! How crazy I might seem to others--and sadly, even to other Christians who mean well and believe they themselves are truly devoted to Christ.

Am I really that radical? Do my neighbours and unsaved friends see that I am different? Do they know that nothing and no one is as important to me as Christ in my daily life (not just on Sundays)? 

Am I truly yielded to the Holy Spirit in every little area of my life? 

How regularly do I so hunger for the Word and spiritual food that I forego watching TV or pleasure reading just to spend the time with HIM?

Do people see a LOVE in my heart that only Jesus can give--a supernatural love for those who are unlovely or those who are merely different from me? Can I reach out and tangibly show love to someone who has hurt me or criticized me?

The truth is that with the Holy Spirit living inside of me, I have all the power to be all these things. It takes no effort on my part; it's simply my resting in Him and His power. He does all the work. 

THAT is the way I want to live. 

And THAT is living in the Holy of Holies.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Blogger Interview

Meet Me... Dayna!
First, tell us a little about yourself.
I have the most wonderful teddy-bear husband in the world--though he likes to pretend he's a grizzly! I am Nana and full-time caregiver to the cutest, curly-topped grand daughter you ever saw! I have two beautiful daughters and one handsome son. My passions are ministry, music, graphic design, and editing, but frequently those are back-burnered to teach little Curly Top her ABCs and numbers!

If I’m not blogging, I’m…
cleaning, cooking, coaching--not just Curly Top, but also the choir and music groups at church!

Little known fact about you:
In addition to singing and playing piano, I also tinker around with a small harp.

Favourite top-of-your-lungs-in-the-shower song?
Different songs at different times... usually an upbeat Southern Gospel song that has blessed my soul recently... such as "I Am Redeemed" as sung by the Greenes.

Favourite way to spend family time:
Together... usually in our recliners either watching a movie, Fox News, playing on our laptops, or all three at once!

If you could be a member of any musical group, what would it be?
Probably a group like Sisters, Collingsworths, Perrys, etc... a Southern Gospel group.
Do you have a favorite TV show?
French Food at Home, WWII romantic movies, movies set in Victorian England, historical fiction, or an older girlie movie like While You Were Sleeping.
Favorite simple pleasure:
-Dark chocolate with almonds, chocolate ice cream with nuts, kettlecorn
-I love to drink a hazelnut coffee (preferably Starbucks Caffe Verona blend) out back at the picnic table as the sun is coming up!
-Watching retro Southern Gospel youtube videos for hours!
Real-life heroes:
Missionaries like Darrel and Louise Champlin. I can't wait to meet Hannah Whitall Smith, Rosalinde Goforth, Andrew Murray, Oswald Chambers, Jim Elliot, and many others in heaven!
What song would you consider your personal anthem?
It's hard to pick just one!
-"I Am His and He Is Mine"
-"Come On Home"
-"Did I Mention (That I Love Him)?"

Top 3 things you’d like to do in this lifetime:
-Publish a book(s)
-Go back to Europe with my Peter
-Visit the Caribbean with my Peter

What book is currently on your nightstand?
Meet Mr. Moody by Warren Weirsbe
She Always Wore Red by Angela Hunt
Favourite quote/motto:
"The Lord God is my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds' feet, and he will make me to walk upon mine high places." ~ Habakkuk 3:19

"Live the difference."
How long have you been blogging?
About three years
What was your original intention when you started your blog?
To have an outlet for things about which I'm passionate. I love writing.
How long did it take before you felt like you had a decent audience on a consistent basis?
Not sure I still do!
Where did you go for help when you needed it?
I google for blogs on topics in which I feel I need help: Christian living, homemaking, rearing children, etc.
What do you like best and least about blogging?
I love having a place to write and publish something that might bless someone else. I dislike the pressure I can allow myself to feel at times to live up to other bloggers.

How have you seen God in your blogging journey?
He pervades every part of my life as well as blogging journey. He teaches me a lot through writing. It's always been that way for me. That's why I've kept a journal since I was in 2nd grade.
If you had to start over from scratch with the knowledge and experience you have now, what things would you do differently/the same, in regards to blogging?
If I did not have any other commitments in my life, I would do more to get my blog link out more. (Link up to other blogs of like content more often.) I would have set up my Facebook blog link much earlier.
What are the top 3 things or tips you would like to say to newer bloggers to help them in their journey?
Link up to other blogs of like content often.
Consider choosing one blogging topic on which to focus... a theme.
Don't allow yourself to feel blogging peer pressure; commit your blog, no matter the outcome, to God on a regular basis.

Now it's your turn... copy/paste into the comments or into your own blog!

Meet Me... ________!

First, tell us a little about yourself.

If I’m not blogging, I’m…

Little known fact about you:

Favourite top-of-your-lungs-in-the-shower song?

Favourite way to spend family time:

If you could be a member of any musical group, what would it be?

Do you have a favourite TV show?

Favourite simple pleasure:

Real-life heroes:

What song would you consider your personal anthem?

Top 3 things you’d like to do in this lifetime:

What book is currently on your nightstand?

Favourite quote/motto:

How long have you been blogging?

What was your original intention when you started your blog?

How long did it take before you felt like you had a decent audience on a consistent basis?

Where did you go for help when you needed it?

What do you like best and least about blogging?

How have you seen God in your blogging journey?

If you had to start over from scratch with the knowledge & experience you have now, what things would you do differently/the same, in regards to blogging?

What are the top 3 things or tips you would like to say to newer bloggers to help them in their journey?

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Mother's Day

This weekend I am praying for all the women who desire to be a mom and for whatever reason are not.

I know how you feel.

Romans 8:28 seems trite, yet it is true. No matter the hurt, God will work it all out for good to those who love Him. Love involves trust, and you can trust the *good* heart of God. He knows why.

I am thankful for the three [step]children God has given me through marriage, and the granddaughter we have with us in our home, but for many years it was not so for me. I was alone, and I longed for children. There is still, at times, a little ache inside when conversations come up about pregnancy, carrying a child inside your body... and the statements--albeit true--that "you cannot understand until you experience it."

When I hurt like that, I must ask myself two questions:

1. Will I trust the good hand of God? That He knew best for me and that He allowed it to happen in my life the way it did for a reason? (Or will I choose to be bitter about it?)

2. Is there another area in which I do this to someone else? Another topic/area of life entirely where I may have been granted something that they have not. If God puts His finger on an area, am I willing to be more sensitive to that person (even if he/she is not sensitive to me), realizing the hurt he/she may be feeling? Am I willing to see him/her through Jesus' eyes?
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