Archive for December, 2015

In so many ways I wish this wasn’t the end of 2015, as once again I find myself looking back over the last year with great sadness.

Mum 70thWhile 2014 had not been great as Mum was diagnosed with Diffuse Large B-Cell Lymphoma, she had coped well with the chemotherapy so I had certainly started 2015 full of hope that 2015 would bring good news for Mum. Sadly my hopes were dashed early on, as we got the news in January that while Mum’s treatment had helped to a certain extent, the lymphoma had continued to progress so were told they no longer hoped to cure Mum, but still hoped to get her illness under control for as long as possible.

Despite a course of radiotherapy and then starting a course of oral chemotherapy, it was clear in July, Mum’s illness was progressing, and so Mum was admitted to hospital for further tests/treatment. after further scans/test we were summoned to meet with the doctors and Mum, and were told there no further treatment they could offer Mum as her illness was continuing to progress quite aggressively. After a few days of discussion with Mum and the palliative care nurse, Mum agreed to go to the Prince and Princess of Wales Hospice, initially just for a couple of weeks so we could all be sure she was going to be able to be safe if she went home. Sadly though, Mum never got home, as on the 6th on September she passed away peacefully in the hospice.

TiggerMum wasn’t the only member of my family to pass away this year, as in April we also had to get our cat of almost 20 years, Tigger, put down. We got Tigger as a wedding present on our 1st wedding anniversary, so he would have been 20 years old this July. There was a huge emptiness in our home after Tigger died as other than the first year of our marriage, he was part of our married life, so it was a big change for us not having Tigger around the house anymore.

That wasn’t the end of things either as another member of my family passed away from dementia/Alzheimer’s – my Aunt Vida, passed away in August less than 3 weeks before my Mum died.

I’m not quite sure how I’ve got through these last few months, particularly as this included clearing out my Mum’s house, which had not only my Mum’s belonging, but also many of my Dad and my Aunt Mae’s things too (they both died in 2013) – This was one of the hardest and most upsetting things I’ve ever had to do. I feel that in these last few weeks, that Mum’s death has really hit me hard, as prior to that I was so busy clearing her house and getting organised for hubby and I moving to my Mum and Dad’s house, I don’t think I really had much quiet or alone time to stop and think about all that’s happened this year. One thing I do know though is that my world fell apart when Mum passed away. Other than my hubby, Mum was the last of my immediate family who remained, so now Mum’s gone I feel so very alone – Mum knew how I was going to feel when she passed away as I remember her saying to me just a few weeks before she died, that she wasn’t ready to go yet as she wanted to be here for me. I really wish Mum was still here for me, but sadly her time here on earth was up, however I am reassured in the knowledge that Mum will now be with her Lord and Saviour, and that we will be reunited one day.

Just as in previous years, it’s not only been the bereavements that have been on my mind this year, as there have also been several other ongoing life issues to cope with this year which have added to the stresses and strains of 2015.

I’m finding life quite tough just now, as I really miss my Mum and continue to miss my Dad too. After my Dad and my Aunt Mae passed away 2 years ago there was one song that stuck in my head for a few months as it reminded me that no matter what I’m facing, and how bad life seems, God is there for me and He will always be there for me, and that song has once been going through my head again – so here is Kutless with Promise of a Lifetime:

So as you can see 2015 has been an awful year for me. I really hope and pray 2016 is a happier year for me and my family!

I hope 2015 has been a far happier year for you than it was for me, however if it wasn’t, I hope you have had the love and support of family and friends to help you through the year.

I pray that as we look ahead to 2016 you may go forward with confidence knowing that whatever situations you have to deal with, God is by your side not just during this Christmas season, but all year-long.

The Promise of a Lifetime by Kutless
 
I have fallen to my knees
As I sing a lullaby of pain
I’m feeling broken in my melody
As I sing to help the tears go away Then I remember the pledge you made to me  I know you’re always there
To hear my every prayer inside
I’m clinging to the promise of a lifetime
I hear the words you say
To never walk away from me and leave behind
The promise of a lifetime Will you help me fall apart
Pick me up, take me in your arms
Find my way back from the storm
And you show me how to grow
Through the change I still remember the pledge you made to me
I know you’re always there
To hear my every prayer inside
I’m clinging to the promise of a lifetime
I hear the words you say
To never walk away from me and leave behind
The promise of a lifetime  I am holding on to the hope I have inside
With you I will stay through every day
Putting my understanding aside I am comforted
To know your always there
To hear my every prayer inside
I’m clinging to the promise of a lifetime.
I hear the words you say
To never walk away from me and leave behind
The promise of a lifetime I know you’re always there
To hear my every prayer inside
I’m clinging to the promise of a lifetime
Looking back at me
I know that you can see
My heart is open to the promise of a lifetime 

He is born

Posted: December 30, 2015 in baby, Christmas, family, life, music, Relationships, religion
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Hallelujah, Jesus is here!

So how was your Christmas?

Was it a busy day as you shared the day with your family, or was it a quiet relaxing day for you?

Whatever and wherever you spent your Christmas Day, I hope you took time to thank God for Jesus, as if Jesus had never been born on that first Christmas Day, we would not be celebrating Christmas every year.

Jesus is the reason for the season, because He is here!

 

 

He is King

Posted: December 29, 2015 in Christmas, music, religion
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He came to set us free.

His name is Jesus.

He is the Saviour of the world.

He is our King.

He is my Saviour and my King.

 

Are you looking for simple ways to encourage your heart and nourish your soul?

In the last while I’ve given you some ideas which will hopefully inspire you to implement them in your own life, and over the coming weeks I’ll share some others with you.

So here’s today’s suggestion:

Let others pray for you

We all find life difficult sometimes and need support or help from others. What better way can we let others support us than by asking them to pray for us!

I learned a few years ago when I was very ill that even although when times are hard and it seems like no-one cares or understands, God is there for me, and although I though everyone else had forgotten me, many were praying for me. Now looking back on those days I am sure the only reason I got through those dark days was because God was looking after me, and had many folk praying for me.

So whether you feel life is going well, or are struggling to cope, why not reach out and ask others to pray for you, because prayer works!

worship-prayer

 

 

He has come!

Posted: December 27, 2015 in Christmas, life, music, religion
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Hallelujah! Jesus, the light of the world has come!

Jesus came to the world.

He lived as one of us.

He died so that we could be forgiven.

Jesus HAS come, and he is the light of the world!

I’ve done a few Word Associations with you over the last while, but as you’ll see from the title this is another Christmas word association today. It may be a Christmas edition word association, but it’s the same format, so I’m going to throw some words at you  and I want you to note down the first word that comes into your mind when you read each word.

So here goes…

  1. wordsSleigh
  2. Donkey
  3. Angel
  4. Christmas morning
  5. Card
  6. Cooking
  7. TV
  8. Elf
  9. Tree
  10. Home

 

So how did you get on with those words? Did you find it easy? Did your answers surprise you or were they just as you expected?

Well here’s my responses to my questions:

  1. Santa
  2. Nativity
  3. Mary
  4. Early
  5. Postage
  6. Hours
  7. Christmas films
  8. Film
  9. Tinsel
  10. Family

 

Were any of your answers the same as mine? Did any of my answers confuse you? Did any of your own answers confuse you?

I’ve said in previous word association posts that I find I get a bit stressed when I’m doing them as I put a lot of pressure on myself not to over think my answers! Are you relaxed when you do them or do you find it stressful too?

I still believe that when we respond with the first words that come into our minds, our answers tell us a lot about our emotional state, and what’s important to us at that particular point in time.

Bearing all this in mind, review your answers, does my theory hold true?

By the way, if you want me to explain any of my answers, just ask!

A few of months ago as many of you will know, my Mum passed away. My Mum loved everything about Christmas: the music, the Christmas films, family time and of course the reason we celebrate Christmas, Jesus – so I have found this festive season particularly difficult.

Those of you who know me will know I have a few favourite Christian artists, one of whom is Mark Schultz, so when I heard the above song, and the story behind it on Facebook, it really touched me. I knew right then that I had to share it with you today, Christmas Day, in the hope that it may help someone else who is mourning the loss of someone close this Christmas – Here’s what Mark Schultz had to say about this song:

This song is special for me and my family. I wrote it with my wife after her dad passed away 3 years ago. It was our first Christmas without him, and Kate was decorating for the holidays. She came into the garage holding a box of ornaments and had tears streaming down her face. She said to me, “it’s a different kind of Christmas this year”.

At some point in our life we will all lose someone that is close to us, and that first Christmas without them is a tough one to get through. I hope this song will bring comfort to those who are mourning the loss of someone this season. Please share it with someone who might need to hear it this year.

May the peace and love of Christmas be with you today and every day so that the pain and loss you are feeling becomes a little more bearable.

Merry Christmas everyone!

 

Why Christmas?

Posted: December 24, 2015 in Christmas, family, love, music, religion, words
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It’s now Christmas Eve, but have you stopped to think about, and consider why we celebrate Christmas?

The reason we celebrate is that God sent His Son to earth to live as one of us. His name was Jesus, and He is my Saviour, and can be your Saviour too.

The peace of a sleeping baby
The joy in a new mother’s eyes
And the hope a million tomorrows
Be found in your heart tonight
May the angels who sang glory
Be always at your side
And may you find in Christ the Saviour
The reason why

Glory Glory
Angels singing joy and peace
Glory glory
Christ has come
To set the shepherds free

May the star shine bright this evening
To show you where he’s laid
And if the road is long, and you’re tempted
To give the search away
Know the king has also travelled
From a palace fair, on high
May you find in Christ the Saviour
The reason why

Glory Glory
Angels singing joy and peace
Glory glory
Christ has come
To set the wise man free

Glory Glory
Angels singing joy and peace
Glory glory
Christ has come
To set all people free

Imagine

Posted: December 23, 2015 in Christmas, cross, death, Easter, heaven, life, love, music, Relationships, religion
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Imagine if God had never sent Jesus to earth…

Imagine if Jesus had not lived as one of us…

Imagine if Jesus hadn’t dies so we could live forever…

 

It’s not really worth thinking about any of those things it, because God did sent Jesus to earth so that Jesus could live as one of us, and then die on a cross so we could have eternal life!

Heaven did come to earth, so rejoice!

 

 

I’m sure we’ve all heard it said that, “Christmas is a time to love”, but isn’t every day a time to love one another?

Maybe we need to stop for a moment this Christmas and remind ourselves that not only are there those around us who particularly need a hug, or shown love this Christmas, but there are thousands, millions around the world who need someone to show them some love every day of the year.

Don’t Save It All For Christmas Day by Avalon

Don’t get so busy that you miss
Giving just a little kiss to the ones you love
Don’t even wait a little while
To give them just a little smile, a little is enough

See how many people are crying
Some people are dying
How many people are asking for love

So don’t save it all for Christmas day
Find a way to give a little love everyday
Don’t save it all for Christmas day
Find a way, ’cause holidays have come and gone
But love lives on if you give on love

How could you wait another minute
A hug is warmer when you’re in it, oh, baby, that’s a fact
And saying, ‘I love you’s” always better
Seasons, reasons, they don’t matter, so don’t hold back

See how many people in this world
So needful in this world
How many people are praying for love

So don’t save it all for Christmas day
Find a way to give a little love everyday
Don’t save it all for Christmas day
Find a way, ’cause holidays have come and gone
But love lives on if you give on, give love

So let all the children know
Everywhere that they go
Their whole life long
Let them know love

So don’t save it all for Christmas day
Find a way to give a little love every day
Don’t save it all for Christmas day
Find a way to give a little love to everyone, everyone

Don’t save it all for Christmas day
Find a way, ’cause holidays have come and gone
But love lives on if you give on, we gotta give love
Give love