One Year Off Facebook – Best Year of My Life

Hello Healing Partners!

I enjoyed one year staying OFF Facebook. So why in the world would I get back on this site? Here are a few lessons I learned.

1. If we want to change the conversation, we need to participate. Contribute. People will talk about the same things unless we give and share something different.

2. Go where people are talking and connecting. We don’t do telephone calls anymore. I learned not to fight the technology, but use it in a great way to leverage how to get the message out to a lot of people at one time. Uh, kinda like this blog! 🙂

3. Be brave enough to share your story. I probably would’ve been fine burying the cancer journey and all its difficulties. But God showed me that there are too many people who are healing from something. I learned what to apply in my life by watching other people heal. Maybe your story will help someone, too.

The healing journey shows that we can approach familiar things differently. Facebook is how most of my family communicates. Instead of dreading the barrage of online stickers or oddly-posed selfies, it was time for me to engage in the conversations and start contributing with messages that show the love of God.

I’ll be guilty of the occasional food foto and even a two-sentence rant about standing in line for way too long (you know, things that don’t really matter). But my prayer is that those are limited. Instead, could you pray that I use social media to show the powerful and purposeful, life-changing love of God to others?

The one year off Facebook might seem like the best year of my life, but there is so much more to come.

What about you? How do you benefit from your online activity? (other than having a great time here on my blog? Okay, I’m kidding). How has online content influenced you in your own decisions? Do you regularly learn new things online?

Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer.” Psalm 19:14

Blessings,

Mahal

I’m in this! – Video with me in orange scarf

Look, Ma, I’m on tv! Well, more like a short video that was shown during the Christmas programs. Either way, my mother was proud 🙂 I’m the one with the orange scarf! A personal thanks to Mr. Nathan Larson, a youth pastro at the church, who has an incredible talent (and tolerance) for editing and production. Enjoy and share the video freely!

Christmas musical 2014 from Nathan Larson on Vimeo.

Celebrating “Normal.” Over a year of tests.

I started this health journey and confrontation with cancer in 2011. I read through a few of the early entries in my personal journal. One of the first people I called after getting the confirmation of the diagnosis  was a pastor at church. I wrote that he said, “I don’t know what God has for you [in this trial].” Boy, was he right.

I started follow-up appointments in November 2012, after chemo and radiation treatments were finished. My assignment was to go to the dr every three months for routine tests and occasional scans, blood work and one outpatient procedure. This foto has snapshots of the letters with test dates, showing that the results came back “normal” every time.

Letters from the hospital showing medical test dates. The foto on the left column shows that test results were all "normal."

Letters from the hospital showing medical test dates. The foto on the left column shows that test results were all “normal.”

I am thankful that the Lord walked with me through the stress or emotional tension that usually surrounded these appointments. I would usually have to take time off from work, which would remind me that I was still dealing with this health issue. But the Lord would be with me, through the commute, the parking lot, the cold waiting room, the lab visits, even with the familiar smells of the hospital lobby, the clinic’s television and lights. He would celebrate with me when it was over and show me the hand sanitizing pump by the exit as my reward.

My dr recently said that since all of my previous tests have been “normal,” then I can scale back on seeing being tested so often and my visits have been spread out to every SIX months, instead of three. I just have to praise God in how faithful He has been and kept me company every step of the way. I would not have three sample letters that show “normal” if it weren’t for His grace and strength to see me through those repeated examinations.

If you in the beginning or middle of your health confrontation, I pray that you are encouraged that the Lord already knows what lies ahead for you and your family. But don’t rush to make everything appear okay and miss out on the precious moments that you would not otherwise have with Jesus, if you didn’t have these situations with which to rely on Him. I personally know that it’s not easy. But God is not one to relax. He will show up to your need, each and every time, with each and every step. I pray that you can cherish the hard times and look to God as a “normal” source of strength, relief and encouragement.

Blessings,

Mahal

10 Power Principles for Christian Service by Warren and David Wiersbe

chrstianservicebook

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I got this book as a gift from church. It was really special to me for two reasons:

It was a marker of the new reality God gave me, that I really was in ministry, even as a single mom with a full-time job. Secondly, it was a celebration of good health, that I have been well enough to be involved in activities and ministries at church. I felt really special when they passed these out. I was so proud when the pastor scanned the room at the people who were standing as an answer to his question of who worked in which ministry, and he said, “Thank you for serving.”

This book is a light read, and it has spiritual reminders that are helpful for people who are new to “volunteering” (which is what I called it when I was a new Christian), as well as strong reinforcements for those who are deep in the trenches of Christian service.

Stephanie Fast – how she healed from childhood trauma

I’m sharing this wonderful and moving broadcast from Focus on the Family with speaker, Stephanie Fast. She was a war orphan from Korea, living on the streets for the first few years of her life. She has a phenomenal story about adoption, salvation and healing. Enjoy this message here. For more detailed stories on Stephanie’s amazing journey, please visit her website, Destiny Ministries.