Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The King of Hearts

Relax....This is only a test.......

 But He knows the way that I take; When He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold. Job 23:10

But, O Lord of hosts, You who judge righteously, Testing the mind and the heart....Jeremiah 11:20

The last two weeks have been soooooo weird! Well, it is October AND the moon is full---I saw it yesterday morning: Claire Bear was hibernating too long, so she drove us to school and there it was. Claire said, "Did you see the moon?" It was beautiful!  

One of the funny things that happened last week is that my sister finally got me on the phone when I was coming home from Claire's school---Claire was driving again---I guess it was last Monday. Everyone called me on my birthday which was on the 13th and I only talked with my brother Christopher, everyone else left messages-and they were funny too! I tried calling my sister back but couldn't reach her. Dad and my step mom were out of town. My sister said Dad was in his "mood" -so my step mother will finally meet the real dad, she said. But, I've been thinking about that....Is THAT my real dad?? When 90% of the time he's normal?? idk?

I posted this picture on my facebook the other day.....

This is what I said: Oh I never run out....but I did forget to take it Tues. haha That may explain alot.....but seriously my doctor says I'm a "normal"  BiPolar person lol whatever that means--really that's an oxymoron---but what she meant was I wasn't like the Bipolar patients that have to go to the hospital because they're extremely suicidal or delusional----And THANK GOD FOR THAT!

When my doctor told me I was a "normal" BiPolar person, I said, "Yeah that's good and all but it keeps my dad, who is like me, in denial...." Oh I'm not like THAT, I'm not suicidal...I'm not crazy or my fav. "Don't call me a maniac!" (No, Dad I said "You're manic" Not a maniac -there's a difference, right?:).....so he won't take the medicine and level out.

So my dad wants to sell his house and is unhappy with his pastor....etc. Yeah Dad and I have a problem with people, especially those in authority when we're manic...Like you want to trade in your spouse/boss/pastor, also sell your house, move to....there's just got to be something better out there! 

 Kay Redfield Jamison said, "There is a particular kind of pain, elation, loneliness, and terror involved in this kind of madness. When you're high it's tremendous. The ideas and feelings are fast and frequent like shooting stars, and you follow them until you find better and brighter ones."  ("An Unquiet Mind")

When the man who came to Women's Aglow was talking to me about having enough faith to come off of my medications, he kept talking about "depression" . Which showed his IGNORANCE of me AND BiPolar Disorder! BiPolar Disorder involves "Ups" and "Downs"- so I am on an antidepressant AND a mood stabilizer for it. Perhaps one day God will take away this man's pain? If scarecrow only had a brain! lol What was this man doing at Woman's Aglow anyways? Get lost mister!

 Yeah when I got in trouble at my old church back in 2001- I was very angry with the pastors over there and Bob. I thought they should have confronted Bob about him insisting on building a big house that he wasn't even finishing. I wrote them angry letters and I initially was in trouble for sharing my Average Girl article with a teen at church.

It has been edited some but much of it is the same -OK I've never shared this before-so listen up-I'm giving more secrets away. So that's why I called it "BiPolar rants" - Because "Average Girl" is a rant against the evil teenage boys I had to deal with in high school. So Bob and my pastors (at my old church) met and I guess decided together that I wasn't allowed to write anything....What!? Are you kidding me!? So part of my next (slightly sarcastic) note said...."Please share this note with Bob. I'm trying to get him to divorce me. Maybe he'll just shoot me. Darn! He won't do it and you won't kick me out of church either. I guess I'm not too good at being a "bad girl", maybe I should try harder?" If you think someone's crazy (and I WAS) and you send them for counseling, why would you take seriously something like that? Isn't that obviously a joke?

 They told him I wanted him to divorce me or shoot me

My next (most major/worst thing) manic "episode" was when we had changed churches. I actually thought this married man at church was "in love" with me and I said something to him that alluded to this (Not in church- through an e-mail) I was DELUSIONAL. Thankfully this was my first (hopefully last)  "break with reality". I think that's what had to happen for me to admit I was BiPolar and get help for it and I did. God was still there and He spoke to me. No, I wasn't hearing voices! I had one of my many "desperate moments"- where I get on my knees and open up my Bible and I read......

The heart is deceitful above all things,
And desperately wicked;
Who can know it?
I, the Lord, search the heart,
I test the mind,
Even to give every man according to his ways,
According to the fruit of his doings.
Jeremiah 17:9-10

So back to my sister and I's conversation-you know the one in the car? She said, "We need to go on  'Long Island Medium' and contact Mom" What?! So I said, "Um, I can't...it's against my religion" My sister was like "What? Why is it against your religion?" I said, "It's in the Bible that you're not supposed to contact the dead." This is in Leviticus 19:31, 20:6, 20:27, Deuteronomy 18:10-11 But guess what I said?! Because she continued on "What's with all these rules? Why does your religion have so many rules?" ETC I said, "Oh never mind I'll go with you." What?! What's the matter with me?! Yeah I'm the "Waffle girl".

I was thinking about a particular story in the Bible with regards to this. It's in the old Testament and it's about King Saul and the Prophet Samuel. It's in I Samuel 28. Samuel had already told Saul when he was alive that God was displeased with him because of his disobedience. That's in I Samuel 15. In chapter 28 though Samuel has died. In verse 5 it says the Philistines were assembled close by, ready to attack and Saul was afraid, he tried to inquire of the Lord in different ways but it didn't work. So he decides to go to a medium and contact the prophet Samuel. And Saul who was king had himself, probably as an appeasement to Samuel "put the mediums and the spiritists out of the land." You know it also says in the book of I Samuel 16:7 "For the LORD does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” Joyce Meyer says, "God is all about motives. He cares even more about WHY you do what you do than what you do!"

So Saul disguises himself and goes to the medium and calls up Samuel and Samuel reprimands him and says, “Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?” (verse 15). I remembered this part of the story and was saying to my family, "I can hear Mom reprimanding me now, 'Susan! I thought you knew better!'"haha

 So the point I'm making here, is NOT that this medium Saul went to was a charlatan- she really called up Samuel! Probably with the help of demons, though. The point is Saul was not hearing God because of his disobedience! When we're disobedient we're not trusting God to work things out in His way and His timing. Samuel tells him,

"Because you did not obey the voice of the Lord nor execute His fierce wrath upon Amalek, therefore the Lord has done this thing to you this day." (Verse 18)

In I Samuel 15:22, Samuel had told Saul,

"Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, As in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams.
And then Samuel says the saddest thing to Saul,
"And tomorrow you and your sons will be with me." And "his sons"!? I would be like "Just take me, it's me, it's MY fault, leave them out of this!" Wow, that makes me really want to obey God, how about you?

So I started writing this post about how God tests our hearts, but now I'm talking about OBEDIENCE? Well, yeah because God tests us to see if we'll be obedient! I wish I could say I always pass these tests! But I've heard it said you don't flunk out of God's school, you just have to keep taking the same test until you pass it! This is called MERCY.

Waffling about the medium reminded me of  July when I failed another test. You see my aunt Dorothy came to visit and her and my Uncle Howard are like wine connoisseurs- which is cool with me, really. They had never been to see us before! I was so glad they came! They hadn't noticed that when we went to see them that I didn't drink and....I had some wine!!!! OMG! It's not a big deal, really, Jesus turned the water into wine right? Well, for you (especially if you're over 21) it's not but for me? I wrote about drinking, chains , addictions etc. If you've read what I've wrote about/against drinking I think you may be very disappointed in me right now and I wouldn't blame you! I had just a little and I didn't have the courage to tell my auntie that I don't drink! What a coward I am! So I finally "came clean" and told her the truth some weeks later.

This time of year makes me think of hearts. Why? It's NOT Valentines Day! Well, let me explain; Two years ago I was the evil "Queen of Hearts" (From the movie, "Alice in Wonderland")  for our Fall Festival at church. Lydia was Alice, Brooke was "The White Queen" and Bob was the "Mad Hatter" . We have fun. Then last year we did "The Wizard of Oz" and Brooke was Dorothy (Because Lydia was the "main character" last year), Lydia was the lion and I was the Tin Man. It was funny, I was talking with Lana, one of my Sparks at Awanas on Sunday and we were talking about the Fall Festival and I asked her what she was gona be and she asked me, "Are you gona be the Tin Can again?" lol They're too funny! Love them Sparks!

But originally I was gona be the lion, Lydia the scarecrow and Bob the Tin Man and I laughed inside to myself when I thought, "Yeah cause he's heart-less!" lol But then Bob went out of town. Also I found a silver jacket that was perfect to be the Tin Man. 

But wait! This story is NOT over yet! God is always working on me and it's rough but at the same time, it makes me feel special/loved that He would pay such attention to lil o me! In Hebrews 12 it says when He chastens us He is treating us as His sons and daughters! One thing He is always trying to help me to do is listen to my husband. I have trouble trusting men but more on that in my next post.

When Teddy first went off to school, he came home one Christmas with his friends who visited us for a few days before going home to their famlies. My kids all know that Mom and Dad have an "Open door policy" -we love having people over! So we had Al, Francisco and Patricia over- they were in the CURO Program with Teddy at the University of Georgia and only about 16 freshman Honor Students get into this every year! So while they were at our house a cute little black dog showed up and they all had decided to be room mates the next school year and Teddy really took to the dog, so they decided to keep her and take her to college. I tried not to be too jealous---Lucky dog- she gets to go to college and I don't! But Bob was not too keen on all this, he said, "That's a Pit Bull- they're dangerous" Funny one of the names they considered for "Layla" was, "Danger" which would have fit her, actually! Bob also said, "Where's she gona end up when you all are done with school? We can't keep her!"

To make a "long story short" we ended up with Layla because Teddy and his friends moved into an apartment that didn't allow pets---Then last August I was babysitting my friends little girl and Layla bit her! I was devastated! Layla is an insecure but sweet dog! Betty Kate loves dogs and I wrongly thought that they had got to know each other and I turned my back on them, I was cooking dinner. I think Betty Kate made a move that Layla interpreted as "threatening". I was determined to find a home for her, somehow. I had to take Betty Kate to the Med Stop and Layla was quarantined (at home though) by the Health Department for a few days! I couldn't help thinking, "Oh how I wish we had listened to Bob!!!"

                                           Lydia with Layla

August turned to September, September to October and I still didn't know what to do with Layla. I had called Teddy and told him the whole story. I did place much of the blame on myself. NEVER leave any dog, especially a Pit Bull alone with anyone! Especially a child! Dumb move, Susan! My friend and her family had moved to Washington state. If they had not been about to move, it would have been more awkward to keep the dog. I wouldn't have felt like I could have Betty Kate over anymore with Layla around. But my kids and I still loved/love Layla.

So now we're to October and the week of the Fall Festival. I ended up having to take our family dog, Bobby to the vet because she couldn't get up one morning (hip dysplasia). This was when Bob was out of town. So I decided to put Layla up "Free to good home" on the wall at the vets, but wait! I can't lie! So what do I say? "But careful she bites!" "Free to good home with no children"? So I told the receptionists the whole story. They said, "You can't give her away, if she bites someone again, you're liable" What?! I'm like, "So what can I do with her?" So they said they'd go ask the veterinarian. And the vet? She sentenced Layla to DEATH! That's the best option? No, no, no ,nooooooooo! But we love her! But Teddy's already mad at us, now we have to kill his dog?! Like I said Bob was out of town 'til Friday night, that's when we have our "Date Night". So I prayed about it. God's like "Remember what you learned from Layla about listening to Bob? Let Bob decide" (Again This is NOT an audible voice! lol) "No way God! He hates the dog. He'll kill her for sure!" But with some anxiety, I decided to let Bob decide, I told him the whole story when we went on our date, what the vet said etc. If we didn't put her to sleep we'd have to keep her....Bob paused, then replied, "I don't want to have her put to sleep" Then he added, "I'M NOT COMPLETELY HEARTLESS" lol I was soooooo relieved! You see, sometimes when you are just willing to sacrifice to be OBEDIENT to God---He will give it back to you!!!! You CAN trust Him! He loves you! He's definitely NOT HEARTLESS!

This is what happened with Abraham and Isaac:

Now it came to pass after these things that God tested Abraham, and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then He said, “Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.” Genesis 22:1-2

 Some people can be offended at this, how could God ask such a thing? In today's civilized society - it sounds outrageous. My father-in -law seemed astonished at the thought. He said it showed the "dark side" of God, but God is only light in Him there is "no shadow of turning". And in Abraham's time of idol worship, it was a practice to sacrifice your children to the "god", Molech. It is referred to in many places in the Old and New testaments.

Abraham and Sarah waited so so long for their son Isaac. Isaac filled their hearts with joy. But when you get blessed like that God knows there is a danger of you putting the created (Isaac) before your Creator (God) and turning God's blessing into an idol:

 I found this song, it like cuts to the quick- Jimmy Needham sings it (but it was written by someone else). It's called, "Clear the Stage" and here are some lines from it:
Any thing I put, before my God, is an idol
Any thing I want, with all my heart, is an idol
Any thing I can't, stop thinking of, is an idol
Any thing that I, give all my love, is an idol

Abraham passed his test and he didn't have to offer up his son! God provided a ram for the sacrifice!

"Every time God gives us a test, we can tell how far we have come and how far we still have to go by how we react in that test. Attitudes of the heart that we did not know we had often come out through tests and trials. Embrace your tests as opportunities for growth and development. " Joyce Meyer, "The Everyday Life Bible"

I wrote this poem in March and struggled with it ever since....Why? Because I didn't know whose heart it was, but I thought I did. And I just didn't have the heart to do it! lol

The Heart                                                                                                                         

O Responsibility,
One that I never asked for,
What's in my hand?
A heart?
O that it would depart!
Take it away, Lord!
"Break it" He says,
"I will bind it up"
"No, I can't!"
"Do you love Me?" He says,
"Lord You know I do!"
"If you love Me, you'll keep my commandments"
"Lord, I do! You said to be kind!"
"But not this time",
"But Lord I can't, it's just too hard!"
"That's a lie" He says to me,
"You can do all I require"
"Just trust Me, I will take you higher"
What's up there, Lord?
I cannot see,
"Didn't I say, 'Just follow Me'?"
"What's in your hand, Susan?"
"Oh, the heart!"
"Break it! I said
And give it to Me,
Some day you will understand
Just follow Me, I have a plan"

Heart on my Sleeve
(I just wrote this)

I took the heart from my sleeve and held it in my hand,
Lord why must I always wear this here,
I don't understand,
People don't either,
What's that on your sleeve?
Must be a red flag,
You must be dangerous,
Why do some think me courageous?
I cannot tell a lie,
I give all my secrets away,
Cause I would rather die,
Then lead someone astray,
Yeah I'm so good because of me,
Nah I want them to see,
It's only 'cause of Him
If my prides already gone,
There's noone that can hurt it
If my heart breaks it's OK
Because I hear my Savior say,
Now your heart looks like Mine....
Broken hearts are the best kind....

The LORD is near to those who have a broken heart, And saves such as have a contrite spirit. Psalm 34:18

1-29-13 While Birthday shopping with Lyd on Sunday we got Layla a new tag!!!
9-30-18 So in 2014 I got the crown tat and in 2017 completed it with the heart on the opposite forearm

And Part III: Who Holds Your Heart?