When It’s Time to Say Goodbye

Sad Couple Holding HandsLosing a loved one in death is one of life’s most difficult experiences. It’s something each one of us either already has or someday will go through. Knowing it will happen does not make it any less painful.

Certain deaths make the news, such as those who died in the Boston bomb blasts or the West, Texas fertilizer plant explosion just recently. Or country singer George Jones who died last Friday in a hospital in Nashville, TN.

But most deaths never make network news. It’s your mother or father, your husband or wife, your brother or sister, your child, your best friend who leaves this life. And you are left with the very personal loss of someone you cared about, someone who can never be replaced.

The journey of grief is just that – a journey.

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You Know Your True Priorities When …

Pointing FingerWith all the talk about priorities, how do you know what yours truly are?

It’s good to decide what you want your priorities to be. But the only way you really know your true priorities is when they are tested.

My priorities have been tested this week. My husband became ill while I was out of town, and was hospitalized. Would I leave patients who legitimately needed my help? Would I come back home to be with my husband at an extremely vulnerable time? Was the cost of the extra plane fare worth it?

We face such choices all the time, whether we realize it or not. If you want to know where your family fits in your priority list, look at your schedule.

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How I Got My Husband to Change

How I Got My Husband to Change

Thumps UpWarning: reading this post may create illusions of power and seasons of marital amazement.

Yes, I got my husband to change. When we first met Al was a smoker, and had been for 45 years. He was seriously overweight, and had been much of his life. He ate – and loved – the typical unhealthy American diet. He drank nothing but Coke and diet orange soda, and rarely ate fruits and vegetables. He was on a number of medications, and was frequently ill.

Today things are completely different. He hasn’t smoked since we got married: that was a huge accomplishment, and made a big difference in his health right away. Now he drinks water most of the time, and has a Coke perhaps every 3 months. I can’t remember when he last ate processed meat, and he greatly misses his fruits and vegetables if we don’t have them. He’s lost 65 pounds, and is off a number of his medications. He feels like he is healthy enough to stick around for a while now!

How did I get him to change? (Hint: this is where the illusions of power come!)

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5 Things to be Angry About

5 Things to be Angry About

It’s good to be angry! There are some things to be angry about. If you are not angry at intolerable evil, you will never have the motivation to do something about it.

This past week many of us have been angry over the terrorist bombings in Boston. And rightfully so! Anger provides the emotional energy to push back against things that are wrong. Sometimes we push that anger away too quickly. Anger is our warning light that something needs to change. When the problem is outside of our ability to control we cannot always accomplish all the change we would like to. But we can do something! Paying attention to the anger is important.

Here are some things I hope each of us is angry about:

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Seeing You from God’s Point of View

Man Pointing to WatchWe’re a fast-food, instant-information, entertainment-on-demand society. We’re not used to waiting. And we can get rather irritated when we have to do so.

Whole industries have formed based on helping us do things faster, as if that were the measure of success. We are so bent on knowing and doing NOW that we will pay extra – a lot extra – for instant news, instant meals, instant pain relief, “instant” transportation, even “instant” love. We may know that the best wine is aged a long time, but we accept that fact only reluctantly.

What does “a long time” mean to you?

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