Monday, May 26, 2008

Staggering Statistic

75% of marriages in which at least one spouse is afflicted with chronic illness ends in divorce.

This statistic just rocks my little world! If you or your spouse live with an illness it's easy to see why the divorce rate is incredibly high. Chronic illness places additional struggles on any marriage, no matter how strong your faith.

On the other hand, what makes the other 25% stay together? What makes their marriage stronger? I'm so blessed to be married to a wonderful man who loves God, loves me, and loves our children. But I would be willing to bet a portion of the 75% marriages who ended in divorce said the same thing at one point. When chronic illness shows up it changes everything, but there are marriages out there who are made stronger by illness.

Here's where we can learn from each other, what keeps your marriage together? What keeps your marriage strong? Even with chronic illness as part of your marriage, what keeps you two strong?

I will share my thoughts later, but for now I would love to hear from you. Email me your thoughts or post a comment to this post. If you've never posted a comment, just click on "Comment" and you can leave your name or comment anonymously if you'd like. Share your thoughts on keeping a strong marriage in the midst of chronic illness. Thanks for sharing!

Blessings for a strong marriage,

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

IVIG day and ALS

Today was treatment day! Glad to get it over with, but I'm not looking forward to the next few days. My hands and feet are swollen and my head is pounding. Thankfully, I've only gotten sick once today! I can't complain and once again I'm thankful for IVIG.

Please pray for my friend who was recently diagnosed with ALS. He is a godly man with a beautiful family and my heart breaks for them. Thanks for your prayers on his behalf.

Be encouraged today. Even in the midst of illness and heartbreak, God is there. Hope is found.


Saturday, May 17, 2008

"How Are You?" continued

I'm sharing a short thought written by my new friend, Doris Farley. You can read her bio at the end to find out more about this gifted writer! Her words continue with our "How are you?" thought and she says it so beautifully. Share your thoughts!

Blessings for you today,

"Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone." (Colossians 4:6) (NIV).

"How are you?" is a question I often dread. Some people truly want to know, and can relate to what we're feeling. But there are so many well intentioned "others"- those who care, but may not really want to or need to hear our painful answer. I'm finally beginning to ask myself, "Do they really want to know?" before I respond. What will happen, I wonder, if I respond, "I'm
having quite a painful day and I'm terribly emotional?" Will I receive well-meaning advice? Will they stumble over their sympathies, or will there be that long, pregnant pause, because they just won't know what to say?

Colossians 4:6 tells us that our speech should always be "full of grace." Another Bible version I use reads "pleasant, gracious and winsome."

I wonder what can I possibly say that is pleasant when I'm truly feeling rotten? What words can I offer that are seasoned like salt, flavorful enough that one would want to feast on them, or relish them like a favorite dessert? Our words have an impact on others, so perhaps we need to think of our response as an opportunity. Can we, despite how we're feeling, bless, encourage, love, and make them feel warm inside? Perhaps, we can express thanks and indicate how much their caring means. Or perhaps we can share our love for Jesus and the strength He gives us as He helps us persevere each day. Yes, our physical feelings would then remain unsaid, or be said less frequently. But thankfully we know that we can bear all to our Lord and Savior and He will listen, and truly understand, care and comfort us, better than any other human ever could!
Beloved, we have an opportunity at hand! Boy, I know I've got some changes to make in this area! With the Holy Spirit's guidance, we can serve the best tasting words to others.

Prayer: "Dear Lord, when we're feeling burdened by pain and illness, we know You understand. Help us then to know how to speak to others, to build them up and share Your love, despite how we're feeling."

Doris Farley experiences chronic pain that began after an accident. Her circumstances have led to an unexpected, life-changing spiritual journey that has renewed her commitment to our Lord. She thanks God for reaching her and prays that He will reach you also, through the words He gives her to write for you. You may write to her at

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Tagged by Storm

I've been tagged by Storm and I'm not feeling too confident about my answers, but here goes!


1. What were you doing 10 years ago?
Wow! Ten years ago, my son DiMarco was five months old and I was physically struggling to care for him. It was a joyous moment in my life because I just had a sweet, healthy baby boy. But it was one of the darkest times in my life health wise.

2. What are 5 things on your "To Do" list?
Pay bills.
Study the book of Job.
Field trip on Thursday.
Finish this meme.
Find a quality videographer.

3. What are 5 snacks you enjoy?
Oh, good grief!
Marble Slab Cheesecake Ice Cream
Strawberry Squeezer from Keva Juice
Heath bar (especially as a mix in with cheesecake ice cream!)
Nutter Butters
Chips and Queso

4. Name some things you would do if you were a millionaire.
Buy a house and car for my mom and cover her needs, pay off our house and truck (and bills), buy a house with a big backyard for my kids, pay for college for all 3 kids, my husband would be able to start his own business, pay for retirement, save, invest, vacation with my husband and kids, and care for family.

5. Name some places where you have lived.
Michigan, California, Minnesota, Texas.

6. Name some bad habits you have.
To name a few...being critical of others, yelling, overeating, procrastinating, and on and on...

7. Name some jobs you have had.
Let's cream scooper, cake decorator, professor's assistant, secretary, teacher, preschool director, caseworker for attorney, director of ministry development, volunteer coordinator, outreach minister and I'm sure I missed a few.

8. Name those whom you are tagging.
I'm not sure yet.

Monday, May 5, 2008

4 Questions for God by my 10 year old

In church yesterday, my son (10 yrs. old) passed me a note that said Four Questions I'd Like To Ask God. Here they are:

1. How tall are you?
2. How do I KNOW you're real?
3. Have you ever been hurt?
4. Have you ever done anything wrong?

No need for more words. I'm just enjoying this sweet moment. That's it for tonight.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Prayers for my Man

Joyful Sister over at Encouragement from My Heart is hosting 31 Days of Prayer For Your Husband. I'm definitely in on this one and thought you might enjoy it as well. She also has a contest going, so check it out! You'll be glad you did.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Daily Questions

Daily Questions of a Woman With Chronic Illness:

1. Did I get enough sleep to make it through the day?
2. Is the water too hot in my shower? Will it increase my weakness?
3. What should I eat this morning? Will that give me enough energy?
4. Should I push myself harder this morning?
5. If I do, can I make it through until bedtime?
6. What should I eat for lunch? Will that be good for me?
7. Have I had enough water?
8. Did I take my vitamins?
9. Did I order my treatment?
10. Did I call the home health nurse?
11. Did I check the calendar to set a treatment date this month?
12. Am I throwing a pity party today or encouraging those around me?
13. Has anything changed/progressed/improved this month?
14. Why?
15. Will I EVER find comfortable socks?
16. Have I scheduled routine tests with the neurologist?
17. How much will that cost?
18. Will I be a burden my family someday?
19. Will I be strong enough tomorrow to care for my family?
20. Will my condition deteriorate or will it improve?
21. Why?

The questions never end. The grace that covers all never ends.
Wrap me in your grace today, God.