Sunday, September 28, 2008

Stitches

Beyond the stitches of time,
within His iron will,

i am to be His and He is mine,
healed by His Word,
His purpose He will fulfill.


"By His stitches i will be healed."

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Imperfection

Today i've been reminded of what amazing things God has done in the past few months. I am in awe of the hearts that have been touched simply by watching Christ through my imperfect body.

I was greeted with an exuberant smile and hug by a man i've not formally met. We were in a workshop together last spring, before i was having trouble walking. A few weeks after that, my body 'crashed' at dress rehearsal for the show i was in. The very next day i performed the show in a wheelchair. This man saw that show; which was the next and last time i saw him until today. I am convinced that he was touched by the performance. Whether he recognized it as God's power or not.

It is truely awesome how God can create beauty out of imperfect instruments. And astounding that, the more frail i have become the more of God's glory i have seen! "For when i am weak, then i am strong."

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Mellow Yellow

Yesterday, my neighbor Ebony said, "Jenni, you are mellow."
Now if you've ever met me, mellow is probably one of the last adjctives you'd use. Bubbly, perky and impetuous perhapse, but not mellow.

Yesterday i spent all day on the phone with Social Security, Medicare, Medi-cal, CSULA Financial Aid, and the Apple Store. Medicare alone is a doozy, and we all know about the dreaded Financial Aid office. So yes, it was a full on hard core day that would leave any human being a dejected, stressed-out, hot mess. But then how was i mellow?!

Yesterday i came to a more full understanding of how resting in God's sovereignty feels. So much energy had been expelled trying to fix and prevent problems in a loving manner, that i barely had enough to sit up straight. Yet understanding i have no control of it, that God knows exactly where i am, what He is doing, what is to come and He does not make mistakes... i was completely at ease. No really, completely at ease. Most areas of my life right now are strug-ugg-gle and my Daddy is aware and in complete control of every one. That knowlege gives you the energy to rest and rejoice in The Lord.

Yesterday, i was mellow.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Saturday, September 13, 2008

From Where I'm Standing

I have been letting go of an array of things lately, material, physical, relational and metaphysical. It is crazy being stripped of the 'things' that make up my life and facing what is left. Everything stripped away so there is no distraction, no covering up. So what is left?

My friend, Beth introduced me to this song. It is a bit more twangy than my style but it grew on me. I forget the artist's name... the girl from "Dr. Quin Medicine Woman", i guess.
Anyway, the more i listened to it the more it seemed to be written from the Father's perspective. I'm sure that was not at all the intent, but i'm calling creative license (cl)!


"From where I'm standing you're the quiet side of the room,
you're lookin' so lonely and I can't stop lookin' at you,
your head is hangin' tryin' to beat those good-by blues,
and I bet you'll be fine,
I bet you'll be fine.

CHORUS
I guess it's not the way you always planned it,
looks like you're headin' for a crash landin',
that's just the way it looks from where I'm standin',
from where I'm standin'.

From where I'm standin' I think I caught your eye,
are you lookin' at me cause I swear I saw you smile,
I'm comin' over gonna take things off your mind,
and I bet you'll be fine,
yes I bet you'll be fine.

repeat CHORUS

BRIDGE
Let it fall,
let it come down,
let it crash around you,
around you.

CHORUS

And I might make you Mine, (cl) I have made...
I might make you Mine,
From where I'm standing."

"Be still and know that I am God;"
Psalm 46:10a

Friday, September 12, 2008

What can you accomplish in 11 hours?

Yesterday God's grace and mercy was apparent all day!



I finally was fed up with waiting for Medicare so i went into the ER. Yes, it's true. My relationship with Arnie is getting stale.
Apparently one who has Medi-cal (such as myself) can get a referral to see a specialist who will take Medi-cal if one goes through the ER.

If you have ever been to the ER you know the process: you go in, register with the disgruntled nurse, wait 4 to 6 hours before you see a disgruntled doctor, wait another 1 to 2 hours for labs only to get a referral to another doctor that doesn't have an appointment available for 4 to 6 months.



After a little breath prayer, this was my day:



7:15 am Arrive at the ER. Sign in. Register with disgruntled nurse. Sit in waiting room.

I sat down with my iPod, books, and a snack completely resigned to the fact that i wouldn't hear my named called for some time.



7:25am Name is called. Disgruntled nurse (who is now very pleasant and sympathetic) sends me to have my vitals checked.

The nurse that checked my vitals was so sweet and totally won me over when she said, "Holy Potatoes!" after seeing the list of my symptoms. She told me it would be pointless for me to stay in the ER (waiting forever) when all i needed was a referral. She made me an appointment in Urgent Care at 8:30am.



7:50am Register in Urgent Care.


8:30am Check in with disgruntled Urgent Care nurse.

8:45 am Name called to see the doctor.

I was called into an exam room with an internal medicine doctor. He talked to me for a moment, left the room, came back to do an examination, left the room again to talk to his supervisor and then came back to send me to have blood drawn.

9:45am Have 8 viles of blood drawn.

The nurse (Annette) that took my blood was so sweet! She must have kids because she was talking to me like i was 5 years old. She was very careful and gentle (needles are #1 on my ewww list) and talked to me the whole time.

10:00am Back to the waiting room.

10:15am Name called again. Back to the exam room.

The doctor did a few more tests on me, going in and out of the room for 45 minutes. He came back in and explained how the referral process worked but then surprised me. He said the neurologists come in at 1pm. He had spoken to his supervisor and was able to get me an appointment at 1pm! "I could get you in today but you'd have to wait 2 hours until they come in. We can always schedule you an appointment but it will be in 3 to 6 months."
Hmmm, lets see... wait 2 hours or 6 months... i'll take 2 hours please!

11:00am Sent to the waiting room, again.

11:15pm Snuck out for a snack and a couple phone calls.

12:00pm Checked back in with the now pleasant nurse. Waiting...

1:15pm Waiting...

2:15pm Waiting...

3:15pm Waiting...

3:30pm Called into exam room. Saw Neurologist #1. Full exam and questioning.

I had forgotten that when a doctor says 2 hours it actually means 4 hours... ah well, i got some crazy reading done!

4:10pm Back to waiting room.

4:35pm Doctor checks past testing.

Ya, she actually came out to the waiting room to tell me she was going to look at my past MRIs and blood work in another office and would be right back!

5:20pm Called back to exam room.

(Again, 'right back' means 45minutes) This time there were two neurologists! The new guy did the same examinations the previous two doctors did, then began questioning. At one point he asked me if i see or hear things that aren't there. Naive as i am i said, "i do get a ringing in my ears and spotted or blurred vision."
He then asked, "Do you hear voices that tell you to do things?"
"Oh! (laughs to self) No." I didn't realize he wanted to know if i was schizophrenic!

5:45pm Sent to Lab for 4 more viles of blood work.

The one and only person that was rough with me was this lady. She stuck me, drew but then yanked that needle out like she was tugging off a loose string from the hem of her shirt! My left arm has but a small red dot; right arm has a puffy purple mound the size of a dime.

6:30pm Discharged. Hallelujah!

So i spent 11 hours in the hospital, everyone was so nice and gentle with me (if not right off the bat, within minutes of talking with the individual). I seriously received the royal treatment (for the ER anyway). I have been waiting 4 months to see a specialist and yesterday i saw two! And to think i almost didn't go.
What normally would take 6 months, took 11 hours! What can you accomplish in 11 hours? Absolutely nothing! But God can accomplish miracles! Ya that's right, my Father the Creator of the universe. Take that Arnie!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Suffering and Comfort

"Sometimes the reason for our suffering is more important than our comfort."

Friday, September 5, 2008

Discipline




Let us break this down. . .





Sometimes we are disciplined when we've sinned. But sometimes we are disciplined to prepare.

Ever notice that 'discipline' has the same root as 'disciple'?

When i was a musician i practiced daily. Because i was a drummer, i suffered blisters, bruised fingers, dislocations, nails ripped off, muscle pain and even broken bones. I continued because i loved music and through that persistence i got better and later was able to teach.

You know what... i have another example. In the words of my physical therapist/chiropractor, "Dancers are crazy with what they do to their bodies!"

We have a certain discipline to maintain health as a dancer, however that comes with some pain. Injuries that dancers are prone to may include: Achilles tendinitis: the tendons at the back of the ankles can sometimes be strained and in bad cases even snap; Blisters, Bunions, Bunionette: a bone deformity usually in the dancers little toe; Bursitis, Bruises, Bruised toenails, Calluses, Contusions, Corns, Cuts between the toes; Dancer's heel (Plantar fasciitis), Dermatitis, Dorsal exostosis, Extensor tendinitis, Fungus nails, Hallux limitus and rigidus, Hammer toes: when the toes bend up permanently at the middle joint; Heel bruises, Heel spurs, Ingrown toenails, Jammed big toes, Muscle tears, Neuromas, Plantar warts, Sesamoiditis, Sprained ankles, Stress fractures... and that is just the feet!

Our bodies are our instruments so we discipline our bodies so that we may be able to create beautiful works of art.

I was reminded today by my elder that this pain i have now is just that, a discipline to create a strong instrument. A strong disciple of God.

C.S. Lewis said, "I could write a great sermon on victory over pain if i could just get over this headache", and of course he was being a bit facetious. Victory over pain does not come after, but during that pain. We continue through that pain as faithful servants, in chains because we love Christ because He first loved us.

2 Corinthians 4:1717For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;

1 Corinthians 9:26-27
26 Therefore I
run in such a way, as not without aim; I box in such a way, as not beating the air;
27 but I discipline
my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified.

Colossians 1:11
Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;