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Author Archives: Healing Eyes

Evening with the Stars

So I am struggling with what to share about my day. Part of me just wants to share the ‘Doing’ part and a bunch of kid photos. But my heart is being pulled to a different direction. It is rewinding back to last night and my conversation with God. Be warned this conversation is a mixed bag of emotions and a bit hard to share since it just exposes my vulnerability more. Perhaps that is what I am supposed to do when Go said, ‘Write’.  Plus if I had my way I wouldn’t share my private journal with the public but maybe God’s ways are better than mine.

The sun gives me a reason to breathe.

Helping others gives me purpose.

Is it because of taking care of Andy?

Am I trying to make up for his death?

Help me God!

I can’t do this alone

What lesson am I to learn?

Oh what misery I feel when loves first kiss is gone forever. Never to return again… I long for you Andy.

“I have called you to follow me on a solitary path, making time alone with me your highest priority and deepest joy. It is a pathway largely unappreciated and often despised. However, you have chosen the better thing, which will never be taken away from you. Moreover as you walk close to me, I can bless others through you.” -Jesus Calling book

Don’t let your service become self serving.. Don’t let it become mere busywork, losing sight of walking with God.

Watch carefully that VBS, Girls and Boys Club, and the Lighthouse do not become busy work, pulling you away from me and slowing the rebuilding of our relationship. I must remember to have my solitude – to write and to listen. Take time to enjoy the world God has given us.

“God what do you want? To use me to bless others thru simple interactions that may seem unimportant and are awkward.”

Be in many places for now but do not be busy, calm yourself to be in my presence. Spend time with me – even in guilt – even if others think you are slacking. It is not there ways but mine. Guard your heart and walk slow.

Tell the story of your heart. Do not doubt your ability. If I give you gifts I expect them to be used. Even if you can’t see how or if they exist, trust me. Over and over I say trust me. My love – my child – my gift to you is time. So appreciate it even though you fight it! Embrace boredom – see past what you were taught about living. You were taught for years to be busy. You fought the stillness I sought to give you!

Do not fear the night for tonight the stars shine for you. Sleep in my arms – rest in my love.

Why do you think you disliked the ways of how Christians try witnessing to non-believers for all those years with Andy? Does it feel to forced, scripted, rehearsed, fake, and ungenuine? Only I can change a heart. Only I can lead others, you are to be a follower, let me take your control away. Let your will go. You are finally seeing what it means to be open to relinquishing that control so now let me lead you.

Remember you need to first walk with me and learn how to believe again.

So long you were gone and hid from my face…take this time to remember me.


Soon after writing that I stood up and went out on my patio and saw that the clouds had parted and the stars were the brightest I have seen since living here. I nearly cried with joy as I felt a bit of loneliness lift from my heart. I laid down on the patio chair and stared at my stars and listened. The star Vega shown so bright and I felt Andy near me. I felt God surround me and comfort me in that moment. If I hadn’t calmed my mind and gave God an evening with me than I wouldn’t have slept so great last night. I felt the tears flow from my heart to my eyes and then fell into a deep sleep. It won’t always be like that but I’ll take that moment and maybe those moments will become more frequent as I learn to be still.

Ok enough mooshy stuff. Here Are the photos from my day! At one point I had to swim out into the ocean to save 2 kids who tipped from the paddle board and bring them in, so now I am learning how to be a lifeguard.

Healing Eyes

Experience felt at the Mechanics

I dropped my Jeep off at the mechanic to get the gaskets replaced and the first thing that made me smile and cringe at the same time was the smell of the Auto Shop. The grease, exhaust, tires, tools, and engines all brought back a comforting memory. Me and Andy working in the garage together on our Toyota Mr2, the smells are what bring back memories of times long past. Pre-cancer we could work on cars and play on windy tracks, that all changed after the stomach came out and his strength was lost.
The song on the radio when I first started the jeep was, Follow me..everything is alright. Ironic?

I am trying to follow but I am so sad when the sun sets.
When the sun exits and the moon rises
The ghosts of yesterday return
No more hugs
No more talks
He is gone and does not miss me
He is at peace while I am not
What a cruel twist of fate.

I can find some comfort I suppose in my spontaneous page flipping to these versus that were directed towards my heart in the midst of crying. A few people have compared my journey to the ‘Refiner’s fire’, I am being molded by fire that burns to the touch, it consumes every part in order to produce a diamond.

Isaiah 33:14
…Who of us can dwell with the consuming fire? Who of us can dwell with everlasting burning? Those who walk in righteously and speak what is right…

To await that day when the light will finally break and dawn brings that blessed healing of grief’s despair.

Isaiah 58:8
Then your light will break forth like the dawn and your healing will quickly appear..

To experience once more a peaceful night once that sun sets over the horizon. No more is it a darkness that enfolds me but a light so bright as if sunset refused to obey.

Isaiah 30:26
The moon will shine like the sun, and the sunlight will be seven times brighter, like the light of seven full days, when the Lord binds up the bruises of his people and heals the wounds he inflicted.

To hope once more that the choices made will bring about change in the heart, healing of the memories long gone, and hope to try each day for an abundant life.
It’s yet to be seen if hope will survive amidst so much loss all around. I see glimmers of it in the eyes of children, thru their frustration with being little and never being heard, as if there size means they aren’t more in tuned with the feelings of the heart. Are we not have a childlike mentality and to trust fully the Father, at what point in our life did that get lost? What evil robbed that innate gift from us and how can we get it back if fear clouds us from action.

Job 11:17
Life will be brighter than morning. You will be secure, because there is hope..

Healing Eyes

All is well..or will be at least

With much trepidation I sent an email out at work explaining this Friday will be my last day working remotely and I will not be returning. What an agonizing thing to write and now to follow thru on. I’ve heard words of encouragement and cried while reading them. The grief over swept my heart so hard that it was a tight pain in my chest. It was all compounded by having to go to Office Max and wait for over an hour for some print offs for the VBS I am helping with next week. Andy loved office max and anything with electronics, he loved shopping. I hate shopping! I then had to go to Kmart to get Band-Aids, Neosporin, and alcohol wipes (which cost $17!) since the next time I volunteer at the Girls and Boys club I want to be prepared for the next toe victim. It wasn’t any easier going into that store the second time around. It still reminds me of Andy and the games we would play while shopping, like whistling for each other over the aisles, begging for candy when Andy would say no, and hanging onto his arms as he dragged me around the store.

I had reached my climax of pain for the day and I sat down on my couch and cried out for some answer, anything at all. So then I flip open the bible and first thing I see was

Acts 13:41 – Look, you scoffer, wonder and perish, for I am going to do something in your days that you would never believe, even if someone told you.

Habakkuk 1:5 – Look at the nations and watch and be utterly amazed. For I am going to do something in your days that you would never believe, even if you were told. 

Poof, just like that he said, “Sarah, breathe for a second, I am going to do something you never would believe, so watch and be amazed. You will be taken care of.”

So screw it if I end up having to sell my beloved bike to eat, and so what if I can’t bike anymore or do things I took for granted in Michigan. Tomorrow I am going to wake up and see the kids, take them on a field trip, and fricken enjoy it! Then next week I am going to try out teaching kids! The impossible can happen!

Healing Eyes

Ministry for Kids

Your sponsorship would support:

  • Volunteer work at the Boys and Girls Club of America for the Summer Camp 2014. This includes being there to provide love and attention to the kids, arts and crafts, and going on field trips on the island with the kids.
  • When school starts up again in September I hope to split my time in between Lighthouse Missions after school program and the Boys and Girls Club of America program.

Check out the ‘Contact Me Page’ to be added to the Supporters list here


Personal Testimony

 

Donate Button with Credit Cards

 

Healing Eyes

Everything is Awesome

A Boy sits across from me and taps me on the shoulder, he says, “My name is Eddie Smith, will you remember me”? I look back shocked, “Yes, now that I know your name is Eddie I’ll remember you”.

My chest feels like its been opened up and my heart and all my vulnerabilities are exposed. Like its been in a deep thaw for years and God is pouring hot water on it, burning off the hardened shell and then taking a sledgehammer to it.

The sledgehammer was when Andy died in my arms. Now it’s a little hammer every few weeks that’s wacking off the thin shell that keeps hardening back over it.

Today I was at the Boys and Girls club all day. I didn’t pack a lunch and didn’t bring enough water so I am shocked I survived until 3pm, but I did! Where to begin? It was very awkward at first as I stood around aimlessly wondering what I got myself into. Eventually all the kids were brought inside and then the manager called out my name, “We have a new volunteer today, Miss Sarah. Sarah come over here, we want to bless you”.

Bless me? What is this crazy mumbo jumbo stuff but I was not in control and I went with the flow. I held my hands out with palms out as the whole group of kids and adults started to Bless the fact that I was there and that me being there was important to them and that it made a difference. They then did a very loud ‘HooRah’ at the end. I won’t lie I got choked up and almost cried. That was the first smack on my heart with the hammer.

I ended up in the 5-9 year old room where I met Eden (which was Eddie, he goes by both names). I think he tells people Eddie until he likes you, than he is Eden. The first boy who talked to me right when I went thru the door was Dante, no idea what he said but he was happy. Then there was Kalina, Frank (who I called Fred and they laughed), and Qui’nyah (such a pretty name). I read books to the few kids crowded around me and had them read back some of the words. Played some games and really just felt so out of my element (but secretly liked it).

Outside for snacks and lunch I sat at a picnic table with boys. Very odd since usually its girls I’ve been around. Eden was there and he has a temper I soon realized. Jackie (pronounced not like it looks, he’s a boy) who is really creative and was playing with some jenga blocks, he was making a fort and zombies were attacking it. I later filmed his debut movie of the zombies attack and got them to sing the ‘Everything is Awesome’ song from the Lego movie. During all of this Eden kept losing his temper and I think he was testing me. Kinda like one special girl at the lighthouse. Then I went on the field trip to the bowling alley. Now by this time all the high school kids that volunteer from the states during summer camp  had left (they did the morning shift). Others thought I was with them since I was white and young but nope, I am solo volunteer.

While waiting for the vans to take us back after bowling Eden was really clinging me to all of a sudden and asking me questions. If I had any kids, a husband, how he died, what age was he when he died, when did my baby die, pretty much all the questions adults are afraid to ask. He made me sit next to him on the bus so I must have made it thru some door where he trusted me more. It’s so odd, sometimes it feels like kids don’t see me but off and on at the bowling alley they kept saying hi and smiling. Was I now more credible than the others that come in the morning? I don’t know what God is up to but I feel like an odd duck amongst everyone, no matter how I look at it I don’t blend in well.

Another thing that happened at the picnic table with the boys was a discussion about God and how you get to heaven. So weird how that conversation got started but it was so surreal.

I noticed though that the kids are so used to having there photo taken and as I looked around in the morning I noticed all the high school volunteers from the states were snapping photos. Do these kids think that is all we are about? They come and come and take photos and then move on with there life. By helping are we just making the kids feel like they are only worth a photo opportunity? Too soon to tell I suppose. But I can’t help but remember Eden saying “will you remember me?”

Healing Eyes

Support

I’m liking the living by faith thing. It takes some of the pressure off of knowing all the answers and controlling everything. This morning I ran out of fruit snacks and I was sad but then this afternoon I got a package from a new supporter and it had…FRUIT SNACKS! Problem solved!

My first supporter mailed me two boxes stuffed full of food and goodies. Yay! Thank you Becca! This past sunday I finally put money in the offering plate and it was a bit more than I thought I could afford being jobless soon but I didn’t have change. Anyways, a friend said I wouldn’t regret it and that God would give it back somehow. So I’m not saying this was directly related but.. ‘it kinda feels like it’.

It’s gonna be ok. My new job will be learning to live by faith and sharing the story as I flounder around. Maybe eventually I’ll get my sea legs on solid ground and stop waffling.

Written on the outside of one of the boxes: Isaiah 53:4-6

Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering. Yet we considered him punished by God, Stricken by him, and afflicted; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.

To give your life to Jesus fully? Wreckless abandonment?

Be directed even if it means your heart is broken over and over again? Is that possible?

While living in a fallen world there will be sickness, cancer, death. Is it a fantastical dream to want a world where no more sickness lives?

Matthew 8:20

Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of man has no place to lay his head.

Matthew 8:22

Follow me, and let the dead bury their own dead.

 

We can have all the plans in place prior to following God’s call, we can wait until our timing is ready. But what if all that is meaningless excuses and we must go when called…

I made a huge upheaval after Andy died and now I am on an island. None of it was easy and still it hurts. I grieve Andy! I grieve loss. It’s a great cost to follow this madness. It would be easier to go back instead of forward. Would Jesus accept any of my excuses to give up?

Healing Eyes

psst This Way

My life the movie?! That’s what the person I just got back from seeing about volunteering said to me. Well not those exact words but basically she was excited to meet someone whose life seemed like a movie. Husband gets sick, dies, widow sells it all in search of faith, heals thru helping others, never could have kids of her own and now seeks ways to get past that pain by loving kids.

Hmm ok I guess I can kinda see the screen write for that movie.

This morning started off with a jog and pushups on a rock..yes just like a Rocky movie where I find a random rock on the beach and start doing pushups in between jogging. I am working on my physical health to clear my mind. I hear more from my invisible friend when my mind is clear.

It of course worked because I had an interesting conversation with a girlfriend after running that then led me back to something I have been procrastinating on. I’ve been running from because it’s too hard and too overwhelming to go after. Yes, I am fighting God a bit on this task he put before me. Maybe that’s why I’ve been forced into solitude because of my disobedience. But no more God! I called the person I was supposed to and will meet at 5pm with her. So you can stop punishing me while yelling into my ears to follow through on your request. Geesh already!

Great news to report, I have found my place. Well, I think I have. It has kids and a need and I start Thursday. You know how when you step into a room and it feels right, that after all the searching something clicks in your heart. Well, I think I found it. Last Sunday I had brunch with a few people, which included 3 widows, yes I say widows with pride. Our husbands might be gone but we still are alive, we still need to band together to fight grief and survive. Anyways, it was a brunch of guidance from God. He put some people I knew from a few weeks ago back into my line of site. He showed me how they just quit their jobs and went full time ministry without really much support and they are still alive. I got a contact for the Boys and Girls Club of America on the island from them. The next day I call over there and find out they are just up the hill from the Lighthouse. Funny part is I stepped outside the lighthouse and the person I was talking to on the phone stepped outside and was waving at me from the top of the hill so I could see where to go. It’s like God was finally, literally, waving at me for the next turn in my faith walk. ‘Sarah, come this way, right up the hill and then await further directions’.

Each day is a battle over worrying about money and letting go of my ‘real’ job in less than 2 weeks! The clock is ticking down and the bombardment from every direction makes me feel like a bulls eye being shot at repeatedly. All the tricks and tactics are being used to sway me from leaving my job, packing up and moving somewhere else, and throwing in the whole faith crap.

But I’m stubborn and determined to not give up.

God has every detail in place though, even though I doubt his hand in it too much, he brought me here and then over time he is putting different people around me to keep my feet on the ground. I may feel alone at night but when the sun is shining (as it does constantly) I have plenty of people encouraging me to smile.

Thanks to my landlord who has my back on the Jeep maintenance and safety of where I live. Thanks to the random people I meet when I step outside. Thanks to the woman I chatted with about volunteering and is giving me a chance to fix my ‘kid phobia’. Thanks to my girlfriend who was used to remind me to stop procrastinating and gives me a spot to jog and jump in the pool in my underwear, LOL.

Island life = let me quick throw clothes on cuz I’m always in a swimsuit, NOT! Ok yes, I might have just gotten down swimming when I had a phone call back home with my job, but in my defense it is my day off.

Healing Eyes

Shopping without my partner

Andy would be proud. I broke down and grocery shopped. The instant I took that step into Kmart the memories of Andy overwhelmed me. He loved grocery shopping more than me. I hate it. He loved looking for clearance deals in electronics and automotive.

I got the oil changed on the jeep. I bought a tire wrench. All for Andy. Check that off my list of getting past. I even bought rainx windshield cleaner and micro fiber clothes because that’s what Andy would buy. Oh it’s hard starting over and living without my partner. It’s terrifying each time I go out that door to face a world without Andy.

Early morning after a night of sleeplessness I finally fell into a deep deep sleep. I remember Andy whispering something to me..as if he was there helping me sleep. I even thought I felt the dogs on my legs but that’s impossible since they are alive still. So much I miss from my life with Andy and the pups. Normally we would go to the dog park before grocery shopping and also take the dogs out to eat first during the summer months. So many ‘no mores’.

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Healing Eyes

Coconut Oil

What do you expect when you wake up and start your day? My day involved serving breakfast to the homeless at the Catholic Church. Followed by a phone call from social security to discuss my deceased husbands back pay that I may be eligible for. Helping clear heavy palm leaves from a friends estate in the summer heat. Finally ending with a treasure hunt for cold pressed coconut oil which involved Rasta’s and goats.

My adventure to find coconut oil began after I just got out of my friend’s pool to cool off after hard labor (of which I had forgotten my swim suit and for the first time just said, screw it I’ll go in my underwear).

Another friend led me to the spot where he thought the street vendor would be that sold the oil but that ended up leading to another vendor, followed by fake directions to throw us off the scent of the true coconut oil vendor. Eventually after stopping and going in the middle of the road, backing up, turning around, and just laughing at the obscurity of the task at hand we found a man with goats. Yes, we ended up down a road and he said lets just stop and talk to this guy with goats. Alright why not. He was a Rasta, an organic, true to nature and all around nice guy. At first I was scared since this was a stranger down a back road and he looked unapproachable. But I followed And smiled as he asked about where the coconut oil could be bought and imagine the coincidence when he said his sister sold the oil and she was up the road. We then started asking questions about goats and sheep, on how they will eat the grass differently. Sheep will eat the grass down do the dirt but goats won’t completely annihilate the earth. There was a dog that guarded the goats. The dog’s sole purpose was to watch the goats, he was not a buddy and you did not pet him or see him but he knew his goats. The chickens will peck you if you get too close. The guy burns the top of the beak off so that they won’t kill each other. The white geese, three of them, lay there eggs but the darn mongoose keep stealing them. How crazy this new world is when you have the right guide to lead you around.

Up the road we found the oil and a very nice lady named Violet. The place was what looked like an old cargo container on the side of the road and a vendor stand in front. It was clean and there was fruit, soap, oil, handmade items and all were very nicely displayed. The oil is in a very nice bottle and it just seemed almost unreal that in the middle of no where it was like we found a mini bath and body works slash fruit stand. I am being taught something from a ton of different angles and I like it. Plus now my skin will be smooth and moisturized from the coconut oil and I can protect myself from the sun. I even got some nice natural bug spray.

A year ago I was in Michigan and Andy was sick. Now I am traveling around an island with my ex-marine friend and having my eyes opened to new things and realities. Thank God I got out of Michigan. There is a whole world out there just waiting to be explored. Some days are dull but days like today remind me why I went and why I was supposed to go.

Healing Eyes

Empty me

I cry for my love

I cry for his pain

I cry for memories gone

and memories to never be.

I cry for the pain endured

to finally let go the chains

that held him on this earth.

I weep tonight – I weep for the day yet to come.

For when tomorrow comes without you I grieve even more.

I am left with pieces of a man

pieces of a blessing I held so dear.

If life goes on amidst the pain

then God take my life, take it and make it free.

Free from pains deadly grip upon my heart.

Let others feel my pain thru your plan in me.

My eyes only see fear and doubt but thru my heart find the crack to break me more.

 

A song someone shared with me a few days ago… Thank you friend.

Keep making me. by Sidewalk Prophets

Healing Eyes