Mish Mash

A bundle of mish-mashed thoughts.

First, though…I had a wonderful ride with Harley today. My trainer and I went to a place with cows romping around. The upshot is, this was quite an adventure…and God put His peace upon Harley and in me. We did a little trotting and even moved the cattle gently. Harley seemed at one point to “lock on” to a cow and want to move him. All of this is such a miracle.

I believe that this is a parallel to new things God is doing in me and in my relationship with Daniel, too. You see, to Harley, the cows are like big bombad bad guys. Together, Harley and I can move them. As I provide boundaries and God-dependent leadership to Harley, he found confidence and his fears dissipated…as did mine.

I believe that the same is true for my Daniel and me. Daniel will face a lot of “big bombad bad guys”…a lot of “cows” in life. Right now, as I provide boundaries and God-dependent leadership, Daniel will find confidence and his fears will dissipate, too. Even as Harley’s did.

I know some of you who visit this blog have been praying. THANK YOU. I have found SUCH joy in my son in the past three days. Though having Asperger’s Syndrome, Daniel enjoys being cuddled and held so I have been doing a lot of that and a lot of praising him for as many things as I can. Daniel has just been beaming under this kind of attention. THANK YOU FOR YOUR PRAYERS.

How does this affect my eating? In a HUGE way it affects me. My eating is impacted by my relationship with my son and my fears of Harley both. Facing into these things with delight, and relishing them for whatever God will choose to bring my way…agreeing with Him that I can stretch for what He invites me to become…there is peace and release in that. As I quit striving, the food thing isn’t quite the battle.

I am still not back at “stellar” with regard to 0 to 5 eating. There are yet tiny justifications (not really “tiny” at all). But these two are being offered to God bit by bit.

I will confess, I have thought about deleting some of my posts…the three about autism–accepting it or it being a gift from God or not. The last thing I want my posts to do is create shame in others or something else that the enemy can use. No way. I have felt that I should leave the posts, though. They are an honest chronicling of *my* journey. No one else’s.

My pastor called this evening and shared with me that he feels differently about some of these things. The way he put it resonated with me. There is a Divine Mystery associated with the will of God and what is “allowed” or what is “ordained,” what is “acceptable” and what is “perfect.” In reducing it to words and black and white labels, I have perhaps done myself a disservice.

If I can understand the way God works, if I can fathom “three yet one,” “free will and sovereign choice,” and other lofty mysteries…then I have basically reduced the Almighty down to my intellectual level. That is pretty scary.

So for now, I think He calls me, He perhaps calls you….to accept what has been given to us. To delight ourselves in HIM. Not in any earthly gift or condition or situation, but in HIM. I believe that the Lord wants to be the delight of our hearts. As John Piper says, God is most glorified in me when I am most delighting in Him. That is sufficient for me.

Lord, may I delight utterly, completely and with total abandon in you.

What if the answer is…a horse?

Hmm…I have been SO focused on FOOD in my mind today. WHAT IS UP WITH THAT? I know I am tired. I know that I am more vulnerable when I am tired. But this is crazy.

So tonight, when hubby brought home fresh french bread and I hadn’t eaten dinner, but only “shaved my hunger a bit” with a few almonds, I had a bunch of it with real butter. I chased that with some ice cream with graham crackers and Hershey’s syrup. I couldn’t believe it, but I wasn’t past a 5 even ten minutes later, but I know the truth….It was rebellious eating. My heart wasn’t right. I should have fasted my hunger (or almost hunger) until my heart was in a different place.

All day I thought about food…a LOT…more than EVER in a long while. So, I asked myself what my accountability partner will probably ask me if, in spite of the way my hunger graph reads for today, I ‘fess up and tell her about my struggle with my thoughts and attitude:

“Who do you need to forgive?”

Hmm…I couldn’t think of anyone.

And then there it was. THIS is who I need to forgive:

This sounds pretty pathetic, but the “person” I need to forgive is Harley–the horse in the photograph. Today I had a lesson with my trainer and Harley (and my trainer’s horse, Amadeus). It was really challenging for me. I was anxious before getting there and had to acknowledge my fears.
For five years, I have tried to be something I am not for Harley or to make him be something he is not for me. I think I am only now beginning to realize this. God uses my horses to teach me a lot…and now, tonight, I wonder if the pain of yet another lesson is coming to fruition…I could be on the verge of changing a lot myself (not necessarily a bad thing if it is from the Lord)–in a way which would affect my relationships with people–I believe I can’t separate out who I am with my horses from who I am with people and with God. So…right now, I may be either on the verge of “becoming,” which, as “romanticized” a notion as it is is verrry frightening to me, or I must let Harley go to a new home. Most who have never been owned by a horse would think that should be no big deal. Well, I have to tell you…long story short…that neither option feels very good. In fact, either option throws me into an emotional bout with insecurity.

While I “should” be praising God for the blessing of having horses at all, let alone four!!! I am fussing about “becoming”…good grief. The truth is, the way I am isn’t satisfactory. I have to change to experience that for which I have longed. In a way, it touches on my…well…inadequacy…again.

And here it boils down…releasing my unmet needs, my disappointments, my failures, my unmet expectations, even my so-called “rights,” means letting go of a dream (or 10). Does God want me to cling to Harley and what we almost experienced together last summer? If I continue with him it will mean always wondering if we will be safe. It will mean never letting down my guard, but always being ready for filling in to give him what he needs assuming I am even capable of that. It will mean my confidence will be shaken time and again, as it has been these past 5 years, and each time I will try to “pull myself together” to offer again, leadership with calm confidence…yeah, right!

As with all horses, Harley is a prey animal and his instincts are all about flee now and ask questions later. Apart from him developing a tremendous amount of trust in my “leadership,” we will always be riding the wave, ready to crash land. Something I haven’t been able to offer him in all the time we have been together is trusthWORTHY leadership. The fact I have never had a bad accident with Harley is a blessing…but one I am not sure I want to presume upon.

So, why my obsessive thoughts with food today and why the rebellious eating? Well, boiling it down, it appears that I am, again, disappointed with God. After all, I have gone to him every step of the way about this. When we bought Harley…well, I better not “go there” in this blog entry, but let’s just say, from the very beginning…this has been something prayed over and decided and yet so many things have “gone wrong.” Or maybe they have gone according to God’s plan and His ways are not my ways.

Then, too, It could be that Harley just still reminds me of Daniel as he did when Daniel was going through the first stages of puberty…and that is the most difficult thing I have to accept in my life–that God makes some people autistic and God makes some autistic children with mothers who aren’t equipped…who were never nurtured properly themselves…and, well…

It is all connected for me in some really warped package. It is warped and add to that the fact that the very thing which God intended that I receive with thanksgiving, I treat as a “curse” of sorts. He wants me to welcome the trials, the testing, the learning…as opportunity for growth to be Christ-like. Does that mean I welcome Harley and what he challenges me to “become?” Can I give up the cuddly but potentially volatile relationship I have with him in exchange for a no-nonsense business partnership that says, “This is what we are going to do and that is the way it is?” He needs me to be confident and, while he loves to be scratched and is quite solicitous, interprets my doting all over him as weakness. I don’t know why, but he does. Can I offer boundaries and leadership? Solid, reliable leadership? Fair, consistent, calm, confident leadership? Boundaries? When all I really want is to bury my head in his mane, drink in his scent, throw my leg over him bareback and canter (heck, a walk would be fine) across the field? I don’t need him to be perfect. I don’t need him winning ribbons running barrels or working cattle. I don’t even need him to *do* that *much*. Just cart my sorry bum around a few days a week and be relatively ok and calm as we go.

See? Even as I write that, I realize how like my unverbalized thoughts about my son this is…Daniel needs to be accepted for who God has made him to be, just as Harley does. Daniel needs me to provide him with calm, consistent, confident and fair leadership. He needs me to not love the cuddles and giggles more than the gift of providing clear concise boundaries so he knows the standards all the time. Sure, in Harley’s case I can send him packing to a new home…but then am I allowing myself to grow and mature the way God wants me to? And what if becoming what I need to for Harley would make me a better Mom for Daniel (and Michaela too for that matter)?

No wonder this has been a day consumed with thoughts of food and then this evening’s massive inhalation of french bread and dessert…it touches on the deepest places in my heart, where I feel failure the most keenly (in my parenting).


I got on the scale this afternoon and it said I have released 63 pounds since mid-November. (YAY!!!) That is down 1 pound since May 1. I am pleased given where we have been with my health this month.

I must confess to obsessing a bit about the number, given it just blew my socks off that I felt I could be walking in faithfulness, doing what the Lord said and yet my weight jump could up so quickly in a short period of time. Given that there were *other* things with my health going wrong, it stands to reason that the sudden weight gain was related to that and coming off the high blood pressure meds as well (diuretic). In June, I will ask my Doctor about the water I retain and if I should let go of the diruetic again completely (I am taking half a pill right now). I just don’t understand why I am retaining so much water.

The ulcer continues to give me a good challenge. I was encouraed by the Lord this morning while I was doing my Thin Within workbook lesson that fellowshipping with the Lord in his sufferings may mean that I am assigned trials and to really identify with the Lord in his sufferings, I will respond as he did to his. I know that I could never suffer like Jesus did, but what I do face, I can submit to with a humble heart. If I do this, I will experience the power of his resurrection as well, lived out in my life…that “living the resurrected life” that is spoken of so much.

With this ulcer, that means (at least) that God wants me to learn to hear HIS voice with regard to when, what, and how much I am to eat. Right now, 0 is painful. So, I must ask the Lord when he wants me to eat. So many foods I have been eating with joy (yes, even healthy choices) since November, right now would send me into pain. I must learn not to be owned by them. Perhaps that is what this is about. God is squeezing out of me what is left of my ungodly attachments and my insistence that I can do things myself within the boundaries that I have learned “work.” See, that isn’t godliness either.

God wants me to listen to his voice PERIOD. There isn’t this realm of all these choices that I can make that are ok to make independent of him. I think I have had this perspective…that I could do whatever I wanted as long as I ate 0 to 5…he would just leave me be if I “obeyed” in that way.

The truth is, he wants me to listen and obey his voice in each moment, period. Now I get to really do that…much more, I guess. I can’t pretend to be good at it. For instance, at lunch, I was having some macaroni and cheese–which works well on my stomach. The amount I need is minimal…even less food than before. One reason is because he often leads me to eat before I am totally empty (he is gently sparing me from the discomfort of my stomach acid from hunger doing yet more damage to my stomach lining) and I can’t go to a 5 for sure because that would make me uncomfortable too…even more than before. So probably 4 or 5 bites of the macaroni and cheese would have been fine. I zoned…it HURT BIG TIME very suddenly. I didn’t eat very much, but that isn’t the point right now. (A fist-sized portion would KILL ME!!!!) The fact is, I needed to heed him.

Right now, he seems to be leading me to have these small meals 4 or 5 times during the day and typically preceded with a bit of milk at each one. Generally, I am managing ok AS LONG AS I LISTEN AND OBEY HIM. If I don’t…I end up hurting like I did earlier today with that mac and cheese. I feel like I get majorly kerbonged!!!!!

I hope to allow this to be a learning time that will carry me forward even after the ulcer has healed.

I just want to have a soft, tender heart…and respond to him with love. He has done so much for me. I can’t believe that I have so many ungodly attachments (to so many things) that yet remain in my life.

12/10/06 Day 18 Thoughts

Perfect timing, once again, for the material that I come to in the book! Wow! Chapter 18 focuses on godly boundaries using the story of Nehemiah. It is a great story, but I appreciate most the focus on godly boundaries.

My 12 year old daughter is in a holiday mood. She equates this with baking. I wonder if I have modeled this for her in past years. I don’t know. She rarely eats what she makes, it seems. (She is thin.) So now there is a big pan of brownies and a plate of sugar cookies. I have only sampled both…I realized when reading this chapter that God has been working on me in establishing my boundaries already. Frankly, brownies and cookies don’t do much for me any more. It is an astonishing work of His Spirit in my life.

Not that there isn’t any temptation, mind you. But it is a very tiny obnoxious little voice. In the past, with peppermint ice cream, sugar cookies, and brownies in my house I would rationalize that NOW isn’t the time to try to remain focused on TW. I wouldn’t even TRY to eat those things 0-5. Silly, huh?

The brownies have been here since Weds and I think all together the tiny bits I have had equal about 2 inches by 2 inches when put together. I had the tip of two Christmas tree sugar cookies yesterday and one whole cookie…not very satisfying. I won’t be tempted today.

Well, the book mentiones the categories of pleasers, teasers, total rejects, and whole body pleasers. The meal experience from day 15 showed me that a cheese enchilada from Cafe Delicias is definitely a WHOLE BODY PLEASER! YUM! 🙂 But not many other things are. This surprises me!

I am learning so much. It is such fun!

“We must remain even more vigilant, however, regarding what satisfies our souls, which is intimacy with the Lord. Wehole-body pleasers, regardless of the quantity, will never satisfy the emptiness that God wants to fill with His presence, power, and love. Let’s continue to participate in this journey, which is strengthening and building your spirit, mind, and body as a temple for His glory. ‘My soul will be satisfied as with the richest of foods; with singing lips my mouth will praise you’ (Psalm 63:5).” from page 189

I missed this before. Before, I wasn’t surrendered to him. Before, I hadn’t laid down MY will about things. Sure, I gave up food and ate 0-5 with success, but I couldn’t keep it off because it was MY performance. It didn’t seem like it, but without the pride being laid down, without the gratitude…it was a smoke screen hiding the truth. It isn’t about the food and eating. It is about belonging 100% to the Lord. I know I still am witholding….I had a miserable failure yesterday. Not food related, but related to pride….and it got me in a bunch of trouble….God used it to expose to me just how great a work is yet ahead.

I am still skeptical about myself. I have to remember it isn’t ME. It is HIM. He IS doing a new thing. I am not just saying that this time! He really IS and I DO perceive it! (Referring to the verse in Isaiah.) He IS completing the work He began…and he will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ (Phil 1:6).

Today is a big scary day to me. I am way out of my comfort zone. This is sort of one of those godly goals…being willing to be up front in front of people again when I have been hiding for a long while. Our family is lighting the advent candle today and doing a presentation on what we do to keep Christ in Christmas. This is during our church service this morning. At about 10:40 pacific time, we will be on. If you get this and want to pray, I would appreciate it!

Tonight, my daughter and I are in the Christmas radio play…front and center. My son and husband are doing lights and sound. I get knots in my stomach. I still want to hide….God is calling me out of my shame. HE is GOD. I am NOT. He WILL be exalted!