Wednesday, February 25, 2015


“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come. The old has gone, the new is here!.” 2 Cor 5:17 (NIV)

I needed to get things together for a garage sale my Bible study group is having. I thought I would go through my closet and dresser drawers and get rid of clothes I don't wear anymore. As I was pulling out my clothes I thought about all my prayers for healing and for my strength to return from my falls. My injuries caused the progression of my CMT, Charcot-Marie-Tooth.  I truly believed I was going to get stronger.  I held onto my clothes like a caterpillar wrapped in a cocoon.
I finally came to the acceptance that this is as good as its going to get. I needed to re-evaluate my wardrobe. As my CMT progressed I have lost some of my upper body strength and my hands have weakened. Buttons, zippers and tight fitting clothing had to go. Dressing is now limited to simplicity not style. My attire consists of  loose fitting clothes, elastic and Velcro. I exchanged my stylish fashion to one of comfort and ease.
A few days prior a friend gave me some of her clothes that didn't fit her anymore.  In cleaning out my dresser drawers I was able to replace my old attire with the new ones given to me.  I filled up a large suitcase and got rid of most of my old clothing.
I thought about my relationship with Christ.  As I mature in my faith I need to let go of many things.   In order for me to take on the new clothes of righteousness I must first get rid of the old attire of self control.  As a new creation I can no longer wear jealousy, anger, bitterness or self -centeredness.  I want to clothe myself with kindness, humility, patience, gentleness, peace and love. (Colosians 3-12-15)  Just thinking about these characteristics  brings my spirit comfort and ease.

As my friends dragged out the heavy luggage of clothes, it was like dragging out the garbage weighing me down.  My spirit was lifted. It felt good to get rid of all that I was holding onto for so long. I was embraced in peace.

I may not be fashion savvy and you won't see me on the cover of any beauty magazines. But, my name is written in the Lamb's book of life and it's even engraved in the Master's hand. What more could I ask for? Hallelujah,                                                                                  the old is gone and the new is here to stay!


Thursday, February 19, 2015


Deuteronomy 4:9 “Don't forget to pass them on to your children and grandchildren”
“Grandma can we play?” Such precious words to my ears. The joys of being a grandmother and having a child desire your attention. “Grandma can you push me on the swing?”  How do I explain to a young child that I am unable to?
When my granddaughter came into my life three years ago she was two years old. It was during this time that my CMT progressed due to many falls and fractures. My mobility is extremely limited where I am in need of using a rollator walker around the home and either a wheelchair or scooter for long distance walking.
It just broke my heart that I couldn't take my grand daughter to the beach and run and chase after her. I couldn't even take a walk with her and feed the ducks. And when I took her to the playground I would have to sit on a bench and she would want me to help her on the swings. I couldn't even push my walker to where she was as there was an island of sand right in the midst of the playground.
Oh Lord, I have the joy of being a grandmother and I don't have the physical ability to show her a fun time. I used to watch other grandparents play with their grandchildren, or hear them share of their fun adventures. My heart was heavy. My son would want me to spend more time with her, as did I. However, what could I do?
The next time she came to my home she wanted to play cars. So I sat on a chair and helped her arrange a race track. My back was hurting from bending over but it was something I could do and she had a blast. Loved hearing the giggles and “Lets do it again”.
As time went on we explored different adventures. She has such an imagination and loves me to tell stories. We sit on my bed and pretend its a boat and the floor is the ocean with all sorts of creatures swimming in it. She also has a creative soul and loves coloring and making projects. I got in trouble for this one as one morning while her parents were still sleeping, she cut out pictures from their papers and glued them onto another paper.
Last weekend was her first sleepover. I thought how am I going to entertain her the whole weekend? It was exhausting but fun. We had a Barbie doll wedding and all her dolls got dressed up. The extra bonus was that Barbie doll clothes now have Velcro. With my weak hands it was easy for me to help change their clothes.
The most memorable experience for me was the time we were in my car coming back from a visit and I started singing songs about Jesus and how much I love Him and He loves me. When I stopped singing my precious love said, “Don't stop, sing it again”. The next time I came over to my grand daughters house she was in her bedroom singing the same song. I realized what was really important wasn't what I could do physically, but spending quality time with her. Showing her how much I love her and how special she is to me and to God.
 One day she was getting into something she shouldn't of and when I came in to see what she was doing I asked her about it. At first she lied but when I told her she wasn't in trouble I just wanted to know, she confessed. I opened my arms to her and she ran right into them and I just loved on her like grandparents are meant to do. It gave me a visual of our Lord holding His arms out to me when I mess up and I am forgiven and loved immediately.
I take every opportunity sharing stories about Jesus and events in the Bible. Sometimes I put my granddaughter in the boat with Jesus when He falls asleep and a storm comes. Imaginations are wonderful. I can make up our own adventures and we can have as much fun and excitement as we want.
I am always amazed on how my grand daughter gets so excited coming over to grandma's. I don't take her places, I don't spend a lot of money on things for her and I'm not the most jovial person either. But I love her with all my heart and she has become my best buddy.

Monday, January 26, 2015


My sheep hear my  voice,and I know them, and they shall follow me.   John 14:27

 I just hate it when I'm talking to someone and they ignore me. Whenever I'm saying something and the person I'm speaking to is not paying attention I speak louder as if they didn't hear me. My ego tells me my words are important and they need to hear what I'm saying. I get annoyed and frustrated and will not take being ignored lightly. Sometimes I will go to great lengths to get my point across. It doesn't always produce good fruit.
So why do I become surprised when I'm trying to do right by God's ways and follow His voice that the enemy's voice becomes louder and annoying? Trying to stay positive and forgive and love as Christ calls us to and those negative reminders of the flesh shouts accusatory daggers. The enemy could be voices in your head, people in your path or the real enemy, Satan.
Just the other day I tried to enjoy a beautiful day. The voices in my head were reminding me of negative comments made in the past. Feelings of anger and injustice were surfacing and controlling my emotions. “Wait a minute”, I thought, I was reminded of Galatians 5:22-23,” But when the Holy Spirit controls our lives he will produce this kind of fruit in us: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,gentleness and self-control”. Hmmm doesn't say anger, bitterness or self pity. No those spirits produce rotten fruit. I recognized immediately which spirit was taking control over my life.
So I spent time in prayer. Praying and forgiving those who hurt me and asking God to bless their day. To overlook the faults of others as well as my own. God never said it would be easy to follow Him, but He does provide a way out of those tempting negative thoughts. In fact when I do it God's way, verses Ellen's way, oh the peace and joy that surfaces is glorious. “Father, please forgive those who have wronged me and forgive me for those whom I have wronged. Help me to be a shining light in a darkened world. Let me produce the type of fruit that is pleasing to you. Help me to overlook the sting of words and to put up the “Shield” so the enemy's taunts will not harm me. Thank you for loving me so much that when I stray You send comfort and words through the Holy Spirit to bring me back on track.”  

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Overcoming Loneliness

Have you ever been one of the kids who stood on the side lines during recess while everyone buddied up on the play ground? I have. There I stood wishing I didn't have CMT,  (Charcot Marie Tooth ), and I was normal. How I prayed a friend would come along side me and ask if I wanted to play. I cried to my teacher and she said , “I bet if you ask someone they will let you play”. So I took the risk and feared rejection. I asked some if they wanted to play and they either ignored me or said no. With my head bowed down and dejected, I walked away feeling like the biggest looser ever. Than I saw a playmate sitting by herself eating lunch. I approached her and asked if I could sit with her. She lifted her head up with the biggest smile and quickly we become the best of friends during the rest of the school year.
Fast forward into adulthood. Life has changed and I find myself at a lost for purpose. Loneliness overtakes me like a blood sucking leach. Looking for friends is as frustrating as shopping for shoes. Oh don't even get me started in trying to find the right shoe that I can wear with my AFO's, walk comfortably in and are some what stylish. I used to go to a variety of stores and look to no avail. Finally settling on a plain black sneaker that many of the waiters wore at the event I attended.
My CMT has progressed to the point where I need help getting in and out of the car. I can't walk long distances and use a walker around my house. In order for me to go places I need someone to help me. Those that are closest to me have a difficult time watching me struggle so they are unable to give me the support I need.. Life has  become way to busy with work and family that although others mean well it's just not in their agenda to visit as often as they would like.
So like shopping for shoes I've tried shopping for friends. I attend a few bible study groups and  enjoy the groups and love the people.  I do have one friend who blesses me with lunch and shopping once a month. But the other days in the month can get lonely. This is what I have found to be helpful in my quest to overcome loneliness. 
Just like the friend who was sitting by herself at lunchtime when I was younger I need to look for people who need a friend like me. Someone who's social calendar isn't penciled in with events.
I look for ways to  help. I hate that others see me as needy. The other day I visited with my niece who works two jobs. Her kids were off from school and I had my grand daughter with me. I sat outside with the children and watched them while my niece was able to get some much needed work done around the house. I loved watching the kids have fun and I even received lots of hugs.
Select what you want to see on Facebook. This one is my biggest challenge. It hurts to see pictures of others getting together for fun. I delete or hide the pictures and posts. I used to make comments on how  I would have loved to be included and it never went well. Its better to just hit delete.
I change what I can.  About a year ago I started a CMT FB page called, CMT Fellowship, with another CMTer, Mark. This keeps me busy praying for those in need and responding to some of the posts they share.
And like shopping for shoes, I'm not giving up until I find what I'm looking for. I want a friend who isn't crushed with family, work and a busy agenda. Someone who I can be comfortable with,  accepts me for who I am and one who can have fun being around me. I continue to seek out different support networks through church and other areas. I don't wait for others to give me an invite but I request their e-mail and phone number and try and stay in touch between groups. Starting out small and see who responds will help build a bridge. I am also looking to start a CMT support group  in my area.

If your struggling today with loneliness I pray some of the ideas that are working for me would work for you as well.  I think of the the verse in Proverbs 18:24 “A man that has friends must show himself friendly, and there is a friend that sticks closer than a brother”. Oh one last thought, as much as I want to complain I must bring joy to the table not negativity.  Happy Shopping.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Pack The Halls With lots Of Folly

Have you ever felt like you were the object of a big pin ball game? In fact bouncing from side to side would best describe my shopping experience on Black Friday afternoon. I was going shopping with my future daughter in law, Sara, who was running late. I saw an attendant pass my car with an electronic cart so I asked if he would bring it to me and he did. I proceeded to go into the store and do some shopping. While waiting for Sara to arrive I went into the men's department to shop. The aisles were so narrow with the clothing racks all close together. I had to maneuver the cart  several times,  I went forward, hit a clothing rack then back up to bump off another rack, repeat, turn wheels, hit a rack, repeat again. Each time I bounced off the racks like a pin ball off a bumper. It's like a Humvee trying to fit into a parking spot designed for a Honda. I finally was able to turn the cart and started down an aisle when the wheel of the cart caught onto one of the clothing racks dragging it behind me. I had to rearrange the men's department just to to turn around. Released from the snares of the devilish racks I moved forward to get out. As I approached the end of the aisle I saw it was closed off and packed with foolish sale items offered on Black Friday. “You've got to be kidding”, I stated out loud. You guessed it, I had to back up and try all over again to turn the cart so I could be free of this nightmare. Backing up, I banged into a rack causing me and the cart to jolt. One man near by started laughing. Most people just looked the other way. I'm sure if someone video taped this and posted on You Tube it would bring much laughter to those watching. I was so exhausted and flustered by this time. I worked up a sweat and had to use the restroom. I found Sara and told her I needed to use the facility. So both of us proceeded to go into the woman’s room. Unfortunately this experience was worse. I was unable to even get into the restroom they have a small hallway and the cart is way too big to fit. I had to back out of the bathroom and into a maintenance closet so that I can try and turn the cart. I had to physically get out of the cart where Sara and I had to pull it manually to straighten it out. With my legs crossed, I kept praying I wouldn't fall or loose control of my bladder. Sara is saying “Mom be careful, what are you doing? Get back in there and let me pull it.” She's just a tiny little thing and I could not see her being able to pull the cart with my butt in it. Between the both of us we were able to get out of that predicament. Once again others are standing near by but no one offered to help, there weren't any store clerks around either . During this whole experience the only person who showed any sympathy was a little girl shopping with her baby brother. I was backing out of the aisle and hit the shelving unit. She comes running over, “ Are you OK?" she asks. Her parents should be very proud of her. I know I was. I wanted to give her a big hug but instead made it a point of telling her how kind she was to ask. Having worked up an appetite and still needing to use the restroom we left there and went to a near by restaurant.

I decided to write a letter, sharing of my horrible experience, to the guest relations department for that store. I received a reply stating that they were very sorry for my experience but they meet the requirements for the ADA (American Disability Act) and in the future if I have any problems they have Redbox telephones to use to call somebody and they can come and help me. Well while I'm stuck in the men's department there is no red phone for me to have access to nor do they have red phone's in the woman’s restroom . I then called customer relations in the corporate office and explained my situation to them. I'm not looking to cause trouble or report them to ADA but look into the situation and find solutions. They need smaller carts, instead of the Cadillac version expected to fit into the narrow aisles. I also suggested to make the restrooms more handicapped accessible where buttons could be installed on the outside of the doors enabling them to open automatically. Once again I received,  "Thank you for your response. We are sorry for what you went through. We really do care what our customers think. I will pass this information on to our corporate office". Unfortunately I don't think that anything will change.  This store is one of the few stores that offer the electronic carts plus they have the automatic door opener to get into the store. The way it is now I'm like hurricane run wild. Shoppers beware!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Psalm 40:1-3
I waited patiently for the Lord to help me. He turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me up out of the pit of despair out of the muck and the mire and set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along.”
I went canoeing, a few years back, at a local state park in South West Florida . I was with two other people when our canoe tipped over. The others were able to wade through the water and onto the shore. I proceeded to follow the others. However, with my leg braces on covered by pants, a vacuum of water got in between my legs and braces. It caused my feet to sink into the mud beneath the surface. I couldn't lift my feet. The water was waste deep but my feet were sinking. I cried out for help. While waiting for someone to come get me, I looked up to read a sign saying swimming was prohibited due to alligators in water. “Oh great if I don't drown I'll  get eaten by alligators”, I thought. Finally two men jumped out of their canoes and one by one they lifted my feet out of the mud and I was carried onto dry land.

Today I find myself stuck once again. This time emotionally. I don't know what my purpose in life is. I take a few steps in a direction I would like to pursue only to find myself stuck and sinking. I mentioned previously in my blogs the importance of support. My husband is going through his own stress and so we do not do many things together. Just this past weekend a few family members got together for a fun event and I was excluded as they knew physically it would be difficult for me. My son and his family are a blessing and they never make me feel like a burden. However, with their work and school,  I might see them once a week. I have asked friends to meet for coffee and we have to set it up like months in advance as their lives are so busy. I meet two times a week for fellowship at bible studies and do enjoy my time there. But other than a few a hours a week I spend most of my time home, alone. I have now reached out to a total stranger and will be exploring a prayer ministry in hopes of finding some sense of purpose in my life. I am reminded of my experience of sinking into the mud and asking for help. Remember that sign of alligators being present? Unfortunately, as we try and explore ways to get out of the pit of despair, the enemy will look for ways to stop us. But God always wins. I am learning to reach out to positive people who will support me. I'm excited to see where my life is going once I get my feet back on solid ground. I will keep you posted.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

But blessed are those who trust in the LORD and have made the LORD their hope and confidence.
They are like trees planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water.
Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought.
Their leaves stay green, and they never stop producing fruit” Jeremiah 17:7-8

Several years back ,my mother had a young palm tree growing wild in her yard. I was a single mom at the time and my yard consisted of weeds and a few shrubs. I asked my mom if I could have the tree. Upon her approval I dug it up and planted the palm in my front yard. I watered it immediately. I was so excited to have this tree grow into a majestic beauty. Every night I went outside dousing it with water. That worked well for a few months but after awhile it didn't look like it was growing. A friend from church, a landscaper by trade, came by to help with a repair. I asked him about the palm tree and how much I should water it, he told me they didn't require a lot of water. He continued, “The more you water the weaker it becomes. When the tree is dry the roots grow down into the natural spring beneath the earth looking for water. If you continuously water it the roots will stay near the top. When the roots grow deep it makes the tree stronger and it weathers the storms.” A few months later a friend was going to throw out a sprouted palm growing wild out of a coconut. I took that home too and planted it near the first palm. I made sure I didn't over water.
What I love about the above verse in Jeremiah and the palm tree experience is how God works in ways we do not understand. Like a tree's roots growing under the earth, we cannot see what God is doing. Eventually, we might see the results or the fruit of His plan. For the past three years my ministry in bearing fruit seemed to be over. I had one injury after another and felt the ravages of the storms of life. I would sit outside and watch the squirrels play and the lizards leap. At out Bible study group we were challenged to spread the word of God. To be disciples of Christ. I mentioned to my fellow Christians, how the only witness I get to give is to the squirrels and lizards. Although we had a laugh it really was disturbing. On the way home I said, “OK Lord, what do you want from me. Let me produce fruit for your glory”.
Shortly after I was on an internet chat room with other CMTers. Someone quoted a few bible verses and caused a stir in the secular group. The scripture verses were deleted from the page and the bible quoter resigned from the group. It really disturbed me. I contacted the administrator of the page and explained how someone posting “What type of shoe helps you” to “What bible verse gives you hope” should be one and the same. After all are we not doing this to help encourage one another?” After a few conversations, and her helpful advise, shortly after Easter weekend of 2014 our CMT Fellowship page was born. We are now over 75 members and it is a great place to share our experience, hopes, prayers, inspirations and Bible verses. I than continued to spread the word of hope through this blog. Just this last month for the first time in 50 years I shared my story and faith in having CMT.

I didn't see all God was doing to prepare the way. I felt at times barren and forsaken. However, I didn't give up and just kept pushing deeper. I allowed my roots to grow deep into my faith and found the spring of living water. That palm tree that grew out of a coconut, well it grew into a majestic beauty and gave off numerous coconuts. Both trees continue to grow through the droughts, heat and storms. I too am growing stronger in my faith during this difficult time in m life. I know more fruit will be produced as long as I remain in our Lord. (Romans 15:5).