Monday, May 27, 2013

Huffin' and Puffin'



And thus starts the final upward climb.  I have less than 5 days until all my National Board writing projects are due.  Although I have worked diligently all year, videotaping, collecting work samples, writing rough drafts, it is now that it all comes together (hopefully).  I have likened this journey to a long hike.  And just as you near the crest, the trail gets steeper.  Hikers call this the "huff and puff".  Friends, I will be huffing and puffing until Friday at midnight.   If you have a personal message for me, please DO send that, especially if it's encouraging.  My prayer through this whole process has been: Lord, bless the work of my hands.  Not for my glory, but Yours.  I would like to add this plea: please multiply my time and help me stay focused.  Your servant........Susan out.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Daniel Fast: Day 9


This is Day 9 of a series of posts on the Daniel Fast.
Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 6

Day 7

Day 8

Today's word is "pain".

I have pretty much been in pain throughout the entire fast.  Not hunger pains.  I have not been hungry, aside from the "four-hours-later-it's-time-to-eat" hunger.  This pain is in my lower body.  It's sort of a dull achy feeling.  I imagine that it's my body metabolizing my fat reserves, as I have been consuming only about 600 calories per day.  Either way, it's uncomfortable.

Which got me googling.  What is this pain, which has increased in intensity daily?  What does it mean?

The first few websites said it was a sign that I was dehydrated.  Not true, as I drink close to a gallon per day.

The next few websites said it was an imbalance of sodium and potassium.  One website said it can be dangerous and hundreds of people end up in the ER every year from it.

All the websites suggested that I stop the fast.

And I heard his scheming little voice again.  "You already technically broke the fast.  God isn't talking to you anymore.  You don't want to end up hurting yourself."

"Stop! ......... Speak Lord, Your servant is listening.  I don't want to diminish the work You are doing in and through me."

I will continue the fast.

I looked at a few more websites.  Not sure really why.  After reading a few, I was almost convinced I had prostate cancer.

Another website said that fasting is a detox.  If you have had any problems with a certain area of your body, the toxins are working their way out; hence the pain.  For me, it has always been my lower back.  I have scoliosis and a few times per year, it gets so bad that I can't stand up straight.  Either way, I'm not letting pain stop God's work in and through me.

Daniel Fast: Day 8


This is Day 8 of a series of posts on the Daniel Fast.
Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 6

Day 7

Lord, I don't want to diminish the work you are doing in me and through me.

Today was hard for a different reason.  Satan kept whispering in my ear to break the fast.  He kept reminding me that I had tasted sugar already when I licked my finger.  He put me in a room with a coffee pot of fresh coffee and he put a box of donuts right. in. front. of. me.  "Quit," he says.  "God isn't going to reveal any more to you.  You have already received confirmation on a few things.  How much more do you want?"

A lot more.  All God's blessings.  Lord, bless me indeed.  

Daniel Fast: Day 7

This is Day 7 of a series of posts on the Daniel Fast.
Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 6

Today, my word is "force of habit".  Ok, so it's actually 3 words, but you get the idea.

I am realizing how much food I put in my body is purely by force of habit.  I am so thankful for this fast, to show me this insight and to make me think more about what I do subconsciously.

As I was pouring cereal for the boys, a square missed the bowl and landed on the island.  I instinctively picked it up.  When it was half way to my mouth, I stopped.  What am I doing?!  I put it back into Jack's bowl.  Interesting.  I never realized that I had that habit.

I was making pasta for dinner and got to the part when I would normally start checking to see if the noodles were aldente.  But, I realized that I can't eat it.  I was not about to throw pasta up against my wall, so I had to ask Jack to test it for me.  Strange feeling, cooking and not knowing how it tastes.

At dinner, the boys didn't finish all their food.  I was just about to say that I would finish it, when I realized that I can't on the fast.  Again, strange feeling to realize that I eat their food only because I hate to waste food.  The food was actually wasted the minute I put too much on their plate.  I am not a human garbage disposal.  I think this will be one habit that I will not return to.

Finally, after a long (longer than planned) hike, I made ice-cream cones for the boys.  Some ice cream had dripped on my finger as I was scooping.  Yes, this is the same ice-cream that tempted me from the freezer on Day 3.  By habit, I licked the ice-cream running down my finger.  And I froze.  I just broke my fast.  Just like that.  Seven days of being so careful and intentional.  Seven days of cleansing and letting God work through everything.  Dang habits!

My friend asked if I would continue the fast.  I said yes, as it was intentional that I licked ice-cream.  I want to continue as I don't want to diminish God's work in me and through me.  Which leads me to.......

Daniel Fast: Day 6


This is Day 6 of a series of posts on the Daniel Fast.
Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Today, my word is "preparation".  Preparation is key.

I have made it more than half way through the fast and I have been 100% successful, which I didn't actually think was possible before I started.  God has provided everything I have needed and has given me strength, and then some!

Yet, today is Saturday.  A day that might prove challenging.  See, thus far, I've been at work during the day. I don't have many temptations at work.  I take my own lunch.  There are no fast food places nearby, and even if there were, I have no time to leave campus and get a bite to eat.  When I come home, I'm so tired and the boys are hungry, that we go straight home. And again, no fast food to pass on the way home.  Relatively, temptation-free days.

On the weekends, however, well that's a different story.  I had to drive into town to run a few errands.  I knew this would mean being the same parking lot as my "arch"-nemesis.  McDonald's.  I would also be right next door to Subway.  Healthy, but not on my fast.  And actually in the same store as Starbucks.  Worse yet, is our little tradition.  We never eat fast food during the week, so on the weekends, I treat the boys to a happy meal or Subway sandwich.  I knew that I couldn't stand that kind of temptation, so I prepared for it.

We packed picnic lunches.  Simple, yet so inspired.  I told the boys if they put away their laundry, I would take them to Woodland Lake Park.  Genius, I know.  We all ate, they played, I chit-chatted with friends.  And then, when I went into town to do the errands, we were full and not as tempted.  I could still smell the french fries, but they had no power over me.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of fast food, I will eat no french fries.  For Thou art with me.  Thy fruits and Thy water, they sustain me.


where Glory meets my suffering