A Child’s Heart – Love of Animals

I care about the hearts of children. Maybe it’s because my own heart is wounded. Deep down, I am still a hurting little girl. God is using this to help me identify with and relate better to children. Sadly, there seems to be a lot of disdain for childlikeness in society. Maybe, not as much now, but the old adgage “Children should be seen and not heard.” still remains, unfortunately. Authoritarians, and parents who themselves were emotionally abused tend to be the least understanding of children’s loves, desires, hopes, needs, wants, dreams, longings, feelings, hurts. etc. As an adult I still feel a though I am on the receiving end of people not understanding my loves, hopes, hurts, struggles, battles, dreams, etc.

Anyway, I was visiting a friend’s apartment to have dinner with her and swim in her complex’s pool. Her son, who is emotionally troubled told me about a couple of stray kittens in the drainage pipe. He was not kidding. I was trying to figure out whether they were feral or not. James, (not his actual name) was able to pet the kitten and he picked her up too. Normally, I look the other way when I see stray cats, but this one kitty, although shy, was still adoptable from what I could tell. When I see this child caring for the kitty, I cannot help but care and identify with his sensitive nature towards her. Children’s love of animals and other forms of nature is a form of childlikeness. It is to be praised and acclaimed, because I still love animals too, but I am especially biased towards Golden Retrievers. I called the local cat rescue, and left a message since it was Saturday. I still have yet to ask my friend what happened, whether or not the cats were rescued.

I am still trying to overcome adults having disapproval and displeasure towards what made me happy. I don’t have exact memories, but when I see a child berated in public, I cringe. I admit, I am no perfect parent either. I still lose my patience towards my son. He has autism, so it is even more of a challenge to keep him happy. I long to give emotional support and continue to give Joshua the proper emotional development he needs, but I am emotionally troubled myself, and I need for God’s love to truly set me free from fear and shame. I know that God will do a wonderful work in me, resolving my hurts, and meeting my emotional needs, so that I might pay it forward and help other hurting children feel loved, using my dog Mercy, when it is the Lord’s timing for me to do so.

Posted in Beauty, Nature, Disappointment, Love, Advocacy, Calling, Destiny, Passion, Enrichment, Comfort, Kindness, Tenderness, Change the World, Dreams, Cooperation, Animal Assisted Therapy, At risk youths, Embrace, Believe, Childlikeness, Hopes, Desires, Rescue, Intimacy, Hurting, Animals, cats, stray cats, Alley cats, Children, needy, affection, affirmation, sympathy, empathy, Pet therapy, Disapproval, Disdain, Displeasure | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Giving the mentally ill access to healing and a future

I have been trying to find a psychiatrist to help my husband overcome his broken heart for so many years now, but to no avail. The latest one we tried, which I was really counting being the one who could finally understand him and give him the true compassionate care and help he needed was the exact opposite. We were very discouraged to say the least. The whole operation was a big bureaucratic mess. Ever since ObamaCare came into the picture, more doctors left the Blue Cross/Blue Shield network (My husband had to leave his previous good psychiatrist because they dropped Blue Cross) Those psychiatrists who remain are so full they are no longer accepting new patients. It’s a nightmare! In this office where my husband went, they treated everyone like they were cattle, “next!”. Okay, so maybe I’m exaggerating, but I have been desperately counting on my husband finding the psychiatrist that will help him. I have employer’s insurance Blue Cross/Blue Shield. Now it feels like Blue Cross/Blue Shield is the new Medicaid, where working middle class people now have to compete with previously uninsured people for the same doctors, while the well to do see the more reliable high quality doctors middle class people used to have or may never have had. I know what Medicaid is like because I used to be poor, and I dug myself out of poverty by the grace of God. ObamaCare, while giving healthcare access to the uninsured, also caused quality healthcare to become more out of reach for working people as good doctors drop out of insurance networks since ObamaCare includes Blue Cross Blue Shield, which makes it more of a hassle for doctors when a whole slew of people come pouring into the office that didn’t used to come. I’ve noticed a doctor I was seeing since before HealthCare.gov went into effect now has an overstuffed waiting room. He still gives great care, and he is a compassionate doctor for me. Unfortunately, he can not help my husband. So we’ve looked through the list of every psychiatrist from A-Z literally that were on our insurance plan. I believe insurance companies and drug companies are paying low quality doctors who are only in it for the money to give substandard care to as many people as possible, not giving them the dignity they deserve, keeping them incompetent and stuck in a rut, so that nobody who is really troubled can become well or whole again, causing them to remain unable to make a better life for themselves and disallowing them a chance at a more meaningful future? They might as well be put away in an institution for life. I have trying to get a psychiatrist who really understands my husband and be his ally in his healing for years and years. Ironically, the doctors who are not in it for the money are not as likely to accept insurance. Unfortunately many people who are dependent on their insurance are no longer able to access quality doctors. I don’t mean to be political. But my whole point is that the healthcare system treats people like they are expendable rather than people of value. True, the previously uninsured now have access to healthcare, but it is relatively of very low quality. They are happy to have a doctor at all even if they are terribly inconvenienced. HealthCare.gov has become the new Medicaid.

I visited the National Holocaust Museum and Memorial and in there I learned that under Hitler’s government, they put the mentally ill away so they would not be in the way of the rest of society. They were also killed in institutions.

Now the middle class patients in this country who also have mental illness are at greater risk of becoming have nots since quality behavioral healthcare has become out of reach for them while low income people especially those without connections are still denied what they really need and therefore have less hope of bettering their lives and are also at greater risk of falling through the cracks of society as well. ObamaCare has not improved this dynamic. Low income people who did not have access to quality healthcare before, still do not have it. The whole system is rigged to keep hurting brokenhearted people excluded from privileged society.  There is now less hope for struggling mentally ill people to get well. I am not going to say in every case that people with certain kinds of insurance cannot have access to quality healthcare. It is just becoming more evident that quality mental health care is becoming more out of reach for those who need it to keep functioning at their jobs who have managed to find a career for example (sometimes by the skin of their teeth) or those who need to find some kind of hope for healing to have the best chance of doing what they’ve been created by God to do.

Our system is broken. As are many people who are troubled, hurting and lonely who are at risk of giving up on themselves due to others not caring. I see that everybody is looking out for number #1. Certain people in the healthcare industry do not care about the true needs, hopes, dreams, desires, values of those who are struggling to fulfill their God given longings. It is not unlike people from low income families being unable to afford a college education so they are at greater risk of staying hopelessly in poverty.

So much more could be done for the kingdom of God if the right people got the right services needed to better their lives or to make a difference in the lives of others. There are a lack of services, programs, ministries to give people the hand ups that would truly benefit them. There are people struggling with mental illness due to unresolved hurts that they needlessly went through. Only affluent people are able to access high quality care including mental health treatment. Meanwhile, the people who really need help are being neglected, disrespected, devalued, undermined, unsupported. It appears as though het devil is sucking the life right out of this world. I want to do something about it before it’s too late.

Only a miracle can help my husband now. I am still relying on God to come through for us, for now we are in a position to receive a miracle. I believe God has called us to a life a privilege so we can give the help to others that they really truly need that other organizations, agencies, non profit mental health ministries and especially government sponsored healthcare doctor’s offices may not be willing to give. I promise to God that if He will come to our aid in our time of need, that we will pay it forward it to others and provide help to them to get back on their feet so they can be empowered, lifted up and equipped to do something worthwhile and meaningful for the kingdom of God according to the desires that God placed in their hearts that they otherwise would not get, for God has not called them to a life of poverty or meaninglessness.

Posted in Behavioral Health, Broken Hearted, Calling, Compassion, Destiny, Division, Exclusion, Have Nots, Health Care, HealthCare Marketplace, Hurting, Love, Meaning, Meaningful Life, Mental Health, Middle Class, Passion, Purpose, Support, Troubled, Valued, Worthwhile | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Going at it alone.

Mercy at Manassas National Battlefield for the Unite to Fight Pet Cancer Virtual Walk.

Mercy at Manassas National Battlefield for the Unite to Fight Pet Cancer Virtual Walk.

I had organized a walkathon that was a subset of the Unite to Fight Pet Cancer Virtual Walk. This was to raise funds for the Morris Animal Foundation Golden Retriever Lifetime Study. I created the event on FaceBook. One person signed up. When I got to Manassas Battlefield Park with Mercy and the rest of my family, where I was supposed to have the walk, I knew I had to go it alone. There were not any Golden Retriever Lifetime Supporters from the state of Virginia there. It was a wonderful walk, nonetheless. I got some fresh air and beautiful pictures. My son Joshua was really happy. I did get to talk to another family with a Collie dog and share with them about the study. I still chose to have a good time despite the lack of participation at my local event that was part of the overall nationwide Virtual walkathon. There were other subgroups of people with their Goldens in places like New York for instance. I was trying to organize something in the state of Virginia, but despite my announcements on different websites and spending money to advertise on FaceBook, I got hardly any response. I thank those who helped me with setting up my event and those who donated including Leigh Collins and Kris Campesi. The lack of connections is a discouragement, but I don’t let it slow me down. I was happy to raise funds for the Golden Retriever Lifetime Study.

Posted in Acceptance, Alone, Aloneness, Being Liked, Belonging, Connections, Friends, God's Grace, Going at it alone, Golden Retriever Lifetime Study, Golden Retrievers, Groups, Identity, Importance, Important Endeavors, Inclusion, Leadership, Loneliness, Meaningful Purpose, Outcast, Popularity, Rejection, Team Manassas, Teams, Teamwork, Value, Worth, Worthwhile Endeavors | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Where I stand today- Closed Doors

I know it has been a while since I posted any updates. I am still aiming to find opportunities to share Mercy and the love of Jesus with other people, particularly children. We visit an assisted living facility on a regular basis, which is what we have been doing for over a year. I have some possible prospects for new opportunities, but they are still pending. I did visit children with autism with Mercy back on January 31st. I have sought to do additional visits, but was told that there was none. I was also told that I would have to watch the director of Summits Therapy Animal Services take her Golden Retriever Titus around to visit special needs kids, but haven’t heard back about that opportunity.

I am also sad to report that my opportunity to visit Novant Prince William hospital through Manassas Therapy Dogs was put aside due to my being reported for Mercy grabbing an elderly person’s muffin out of her walker. I should have kept a closer eye on her, but one of the other volunteers ratted me out, so the hospital visiting coordinator put my volunteer file to the side to revisit in 6 months.

I am expecting to partake in additional R.E.A.D. visits with Mercy like the one I made in December starting this month through Manassas Therapy Dogs and independently in another county.

God is probably teaching me patience through all of this. Was it Michael Jordan who had the record number of rejections by his high school basketball team? Like the heroes in the sports arena, I am not giving up. I know God has great plans for me and Mercy, and I trust that He will put me where He wants me at the right time. I am also hoping to start a chapter of Canines for Christ through my church, but it has been delayed time and time again due to personal problems of mine and the busyness of the staff at my church.

I know that God has called me to comfort afflicted under-served youth through the love of a Golden Retriever. I so long to entertain hurting kids through an entertaining loving sweet dog, who is always happy to see them and be with them, when the people in their lives weren’t. In a sense, I feel like the under-served youth as well. Even though I am getting discouraged, I am not giving up! I had to fight to get where I am now, but it is worth it. I know how it feels to be rejected, which only stirs up the fire of my passion to help the downtrodden even more.

This is the first day by the way of Autism awareness month. I actually have a mild form of autism, Pervasive Developmental Disorder. I struggle with understanding social cues, so that has something to do with why I struggle socially and face obstacles like I do.

This is not about me. This is about God’s glory. I long to see advancements in His kingdom. I want to help love the unlovely. I wish to help those that other people may not want to help as much. God’s will is that we are are in harmony with his plan and with his will and with one another in Christ. We are all working for a common cause, which is having compassion on your fellow man, letting God love them through you. The goal I have is not really any different than any other sincere Christian. I wonder why if God has such an important mission for me, why are doors being slammed in my face. However, I know that Moses was told no by the Pharaoh, even though God commanded him to demand that his people be let go. I am going to be persistent like the widow, while also trusting God to open the doors of opportunity He wishes to open for His greatest glory. If I need special training to be a better therapy dog handler, I trust that God will provide the right mentorship as well. At any rate, may God’s purposes be done.

Posted in Acceptance, Advocacy, Autism Awareness, Believe, Calling, Cheer, Christianity, Closed Doors, Comfort, Common Purpose, Compassion, Cooperation, Destiny, Disappointment, Discouragement, Dogs, Dreams, Faith, Fulfillment, Future, Goals, God, God's Glory, God's Kingdom, God's Love, God's Will, Golden Retriever, Grace, Healing, Hope, Inclusion, Jesus Christ, Love, Mercy, Open Doors, Opportunities, Patience, Promises, Purpose, Rejection, Serving, Thrive, Trust, Unconditional Love | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

For Christmas, I want Jesus Christ to lend me His light.

This Christmas Eve I think about how desperately I need Jesus to guide me, so I do not stumble or fall, or become more lost. I sang a Christmas carol about Jesus lending His light at the candlelight Christmas Eve service at my church. I have feared that I have messed up my life inadvertently even while sincerely seeking God’s will. I put my hope in Jesus for my future. I know His love is what I long for and is more than I can imagine, but for some reason I am struggling to receive Him and the love He has to give.

By God’s grace I was able to book my class after all even though I could not pay my balance. Liberty University was awesome in that they removed the hold on me registering for another class with the proof of my employer’s scholarship award. I am very thankful and my faith has increased and my trust in Him grown. This class I am sure by God’s grace will propel me to new heights.

I still have concerns about whether I have a meaningful future to live for. Okay, so things didn’t go exactly as I hoped they would by Christmas other than being able to register for class. I have struggled with having depression when Christmas is over, because it’s like a big letdown. I need God to intervene with His guidance to get me down the right path, so I do not have to fear my life being ruined. I admit, I am scared that God will let me down and expect me to just figure it out on my own or else. I struggle with trusting in God’s character, love and goodness because of my unresolved hurts. I want a cleansing. I want to be able to shed tears of cleansing. I want Jesus’ love to really become tangible to me tonight even. I promise and ask God that if He gives me hope, that I will gladly be used by Him as an instrument of hope for others. I need reassurance that God will invade my life with His goodness so that I can live a life with a whole heart and soul and a promising future.

Posted in Advent, Believe, Calling, Celebration, Christmas, Comfort, Depression, Direction, Faith, Fulfillment, Future, God, God's Glory, God's Love, God's Will, Goodness, Growth, Guidance, Hope, Intimacy, Jesus Christ, Joy, Light, Love, Meaning, Miracles, Peace, Promise, Reassurance, Trust, Wisdom | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Awarded a Scholarship towards my next class, but might have to turn it down because of unpaid balance

As some of you might know, I am taking classes at Liberty University towards a counseling degree, so that I can serve God in providing counseling and therapy full time. I applied for a scholarship through my present career’s employer and got awarded a scholarship to pay for both tuition and books. I plan to take the Group Dynamics course during the winter quarter. Taking this course will propel me to a new level, not only getting me closer to my next career, but also giving me promotion potential in my current career. I was just praying last week, because I saw one of my FaceBook friends serving with her Golden Retriever in ministry full time, I long to join her ranks. As if on cue, the phone rang and it was Liberty University rep telling me I have until December 31st to register, but that my balance would have to be paid off, even before I would be allowed to pay for the next class in full. I was turned down for a scholarship for the previous class, because it was not relevant to my current career field. I decided to take a leap of faith and take it anyway with the terms that I would pay it off in a year. This scholarship opportunity was not expected, but I applied for it not knowing that I couldn’t even register for a class even if paid for completely unless I had the previous balance paid off. I just got the scholarship award letter two days ago. I know it is meant to be for me to have this class and that it is God’s will for me to take it. I need help paying off what I owe for the last class I took. I cannot fathom telling my employer that I will have to forfeit my scholarship. I need to take this class. I am determined to raise the money I need so I can take this class. I am being like the widow begging the judge for justice. I have already paid $600 towards my last class and I only need $900 more. I will not give up, until I raise the money I need for this class. I know that where there is a will, there is a way, and that God can make a way where there seems to be no way. My future depends on this class. I have to take it. I cannot bear giving it up. Will you support me? Taking this class will go a long way towards getting me closer to my goal of serving with Mercy and/or my next Golden Retriever full time. I have faith that God will come through, but I will need cooperation from kind, caring compassionate folks like you, so that I can therefore pay it forward and help others in need as well. Having my previous balance paid off so I can take my next class would be a wonderful Christmas miracle gift. My fundraiser site is: http://www.gofundme.com/Collegeclass

Posted in Accomplisments, Advocacy, Belief, Believe, Calling, Career, Challenge, Challenges, Change the World, Christianity, College, Compassion, Cooperation, Cooperatrion, Destiny, Determination, Difficulty, Dogs, Dream, Dreams, Enrichment, Faith, Financial Difficulty, Fulfillment, Generosity, Giving, Givng, Goals, God, God's Glory, God's Kingdom, God's Love, God's Will, Golden Retriever, Hard Work, Help, Hope, Important, Kindness, Meaning, Ministry, Miracle, Need, Pay it Forward, Purpose, school, Therapy Dogs, University, Value, Worth | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Mission is too Important to Fail

I feel strongly led by God to do Heaven’s bidding, making His Kingdom my business. However, I do not feel as though I have the time and resources to take the steps that I believe are necessary for a successful ministry. I know God is about to put me into a new line of work. I can feel it. Recently when I was still in God’s presence on two separate occasions, I heard God say “You’ve done enough!” and “Wait on Me.” I trust God with all of my hope that He will keep His promises and better my life so that my circumstances are ideal to go into full time ministry. I will never give up hope. I put faith in the promises of God’s Word, no matter how much it might appear as though we are failing. As of recently, my position was moved even 45 minutes further from my home, but with work from home privileges, which I love and really help, but on the days that I commute into this office 1 hr and 45 minutes going in an 2-3 hours (no, that is not a typo) coming home. Last night’s commute was especially terrible. Everything that could have possibly delayed my commute happened.

I have dreams of being a world changer traveling around the world  for both ministry and pleasure, I will admit. I long and hunger to learn, which means exploring. I was made with exploration etched into my blood, yet due to my limited resources, I am not able to travel as I’d like to. I want to learn about the people I will be serving. I promised God that if He blesses me with increased privileges, I will not use them on selfish lusts. James 4:3

I also plan on having a journey with another Golden Retriever someday, but now is not the time. After all, my services with Mercy are greatly needed. The vast majority just doesn’t know that yet.

I promise God that if He gives me a chance to do more meaningful, important work, that I would not disappoint. I promised that if He gave me an increase, that I would invest in other people’s lives, giving them the chances that the other employers will not give them. (or me) I’m serious! I have vowed and vowed and promised God my life! That’s how desperate I am to have a most meaningful, important mission and purpose! I can’t go on like this! I don’t mean to show my weakness, but I am human just like everybody else. I cannot afford to fail. My future mission is too important for my life to not get better or for me to go under financially! I will keep hope alive, no matter what happens though. Pray for me. There is so much on the line and at stake.

Posted in Calling, Career, Challenges, Common Purpose, Compassion, Destiny, Disappointment, Dreams, Faith, Finances, Financial Difficulty, God's Glory, God's Kingdom, Golden Retriever, Golden Retrievers, Hope, Importance, Love, Meaning, Meaningful, Mission, Purpose, Respect, Success, Vocation | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment