Tag Archives: Sarah Young

Hope while you wait

In addition to visiting with my sister who spoiled us during our memory making trip, and walking in the mountains, we were very glad to finally meet Jill Giallanza. Jill’s family and ours have been praying for each other over the last two years. When her husband went to heaven last spring, I felt I had lost a good friend I never had met. So meeting Jill at my sister’s house was a real blessing.

We talked about lessons learned during the struggles we each face and the hurts experienced in the journey. But also evident in Jill’s sharing was the real and sustaining hope in the reunion one day in heaven (what a day of rejoicing that will be!). Hope in knowing that deep dark places of great pressure are where gems are formed. As Pastor Dale said, “What is restored is worth more than it was before.” Hope in realizing the promise of God’s sufficient grace and strength in weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9). Hope in waiting for the One who is always faithful, whose timing is never late.

Most of the time, that is our focus with this walk through Leukemia. Today marks the one year anniversary of my stem cell transplant, another “new life” anniversary. And still we wait, in hope, for the healing, restoration, and repurposing of our lives yet to come.

It is difficult to wait, isn’t it? We all want answers and resolution to our problems right now.  But wait we must when so much of life is beyond our control. Sometimes we have to wait for God’s presence to be made more evident in our daily life.  Are you waiting on God for an answer to prayer? We have a choice: wait in anxiety or wait in faith. Be strong and courageous because you wait on real promises that will not disappoint. “Say YES to your life, trusting God in your struggles.” (Sarah Young)

Be of good courage and He will strengthen your heart, all you who hope in the Lord. Psalm 31:24



From despair to hope

Are you in a dark place in your life? Does it feel like your world is crashing down on you? Or do you find much of your life going well and yet there is this one area that is so disappointing to you, maybe even painful? It is easy to feel alone, like no one else has ever been in this same place. Maybe you feel alone because you are sure no one else really wants to know the real answer to, “How are you?” This isolation from others contributes to your despair. And it seems like the troubles will never end. As Sarah Young reminds us, “It’s easy to project that darkness into the future…and to give up and let the darkness become your companion.”

Wherever you are in your journey, whatever difficult turns in the path that you encounter, there is a truth we need to remember: there is Light to guide us. All we need to do to dispel darkness is to embrace the Light and let it shine brightly within you. Says Young, “For (God’s) children, aloneness is really just an illusion. The world is alive with the (God’s) vibrant presence. The more aware of (God) you are, the more alive you will feel.”

Are you looking for a way out of despair and loneliness and a way to finding real hope today? Cultivate a mind and heart that shuts out the noise and chaos, and leads you into God’s presence. Let his love for you soak in and experience real peace and hope.

From Pieces To Peace

In yesterday’s post we discussed how we all hold pieces of each other’s life puzzle. The key, and the will of God, is to develop a sense of awareness of the people around you because sometimes it is a total stranger who crosses your path and one or both of you hold a piece of the other’s puzzle.

The last two weeks of dealing with high blood sugars on top of the continuing chemo effects has been a struggle. Being pretty active and driven in my normal state, temporary diabetes has me on a constant sugar high. The insulin is helping, but it will take some time to resolve. In the meantime, I’ve tried applying to my life the true principles I’ve learned across 30 years of teaching and fostering personal and organizational change. Truthfully, I learned a long time ago that you don’t really change anyone other than yourself (and THAT is a tough sell too). What you can do is to create and nurture a supportive environment that is conducive for you and others to make better choices about their behaviors.

So in this new manic state, I sleep 3-4 hours per night and am active all day. But all my self-effort to make positive change happen in my life, to be less irritable, less obnoxious, less hyper, less hurtful…it is not only extremely draining but of devoid of power to change. In fact all my self effort to control my behavior actually made things worse.

And then, I read my daily devotional by Sarah Young, who wrote this book, Jesus Calling, (JUST FOR ME.) 🙂 She writes:
“It is not so much adverse events that make you anxious as it is your thoughts about those events. Your mind engages in efforts to take control of a situation, to bring about the result you desire. Your thoughts close in on the problem like ravenous wolves. Determined to make things go your way, you forget that I am in charge of your life. The only remedy is to switch your focus from the problem to My Presence. Stop all your striving, and watch to see what I will do. I am the Lord!”

I am stunned that I had allowed myself to stray from this basic truth that has guided me through this unexpected journey. Switching my focus from the problem to His Presence in me allowed me to instantly calm down. Marcia and I have enjoyed four consecutive days where both of us are freed to be more relaxed amidst the various pains and struggles. It wasn’t just a piece of the puzzle I needed; it was the peace that surpasses all understanding that I needed to reclaim. Looking for pieces of your life puzzle? They are found on the path to peace.

“To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.” Colossians 1:27