Saying goodbye…


We said goodbye to another friend on Nov. 2nd. Him and his wife were a part of our homeless family when we were homeless. They had finally gotten off the streets and gotten sober in Jan. of this year. Bret was in dire need of a new liver but knew his chances of getting one were slim to none. He went in for heart surgery to patch a hole and put a couple of stints in some blocked valves about 4 wks. ago. Surgery went well but he had a bleed somewhere so was opened back up. He never woke back up completely. He was on the respirator for all but a few days. His kidneys failed, his lungs collapsed, then he started bleeding again, finally he got pneumonia.
All the while his wife was by his side. She clung on to hope. She had a hard time understanding what the doctors were talking about and didn’t know what questions to ask. She had only 2 friends that would visit Bret in ICU and 1 or 2 friends that were there for her exclusively. She struggled to make decisions about what measures she should or shouldn’t take. Her and Bret never talked about a death plan. They were together for 20 yrs. and all but this last year was homeless and drunk. Christine finally had to choose wether or not to take him off life support. The hardest decision she has ever had to make. Bret told her before he went into surgery that he had his teeth fixed, now his heart was getting fixed and he was ready to go to heaven. Yes, he was saved. So he has gone home to be with Jesus. Christine is struggling and as far as I know hasn’t had a drink. I don’t want to see her end up back out on the street. Please pray for her.
During this time, my husband and I have thought about two things in particular. First, how grateful we are for our health. We are immensely blessed and don’t deserve to be as healthy as we are because of the lifestyle we led in the past. Truly, if you knew everything, you would understand when I say we are walking-talking miracles. The second and because of the first thought, why does God bless some with good health and not others? How does He choose which ones get to live and which ones get to die? I mean really? Please don’t get me wrong! WE ARE GRATEFUL! I just wonder how I get to be one of the lucky ones and I know it’s not about luck… It’s about Grace… Much Grace.

Unforgiveness…. Me?


I took a break for a few days. I’ve been busy with school and doing some thinking. I’ve debated on writing on the following topic because it’s kind of a sore subject for me. Ok, not kind of, it is a sore subject. At any rate, I’ve decided to try and articulate my feelings and put my thoughts on paper (so to speak).

When I was 15 yrs. old my mom and dad split up for the final time. A year later my dad ended with a girl 9 months older than I. She had lost her father basically the same year I lost mine. Only mine was still alive and hers wasn’t. He was a cop and got shot in a routine traffic stop that obviously turned out not so routine. Anyway, this girl was now my dads’ girlfriend. Oh joy! They eventually get married and she has serious jealousy issues with me. Bad news. She made my life miserable whenever I visited my dad, which really wasn’t much. At one point they lived with my first husband and I for a while. I hated that too but what can you do?

Years later, she ends up with six kids from my dad and I hardly ever talked to him because she made it very difficult for me. She made it very clear and minced no words at telling me my dad didn’t need me in his life anymore, he now had his own family to watch out for.

My dad ended up having a heart attack and need quadruple by-pass surgery. The doctors didn’t know if he would make it. All this time they lived in California while I lived in Oregon. I didn’t have the means to run to his bedside, although I wanted to. I tried calling the hospital to talk to my dad before surgery and she wouldn’t let me talk to him. She said he didn’t need the likes of me upsetting him before surgery. I was smack dab in the middle of my addiction at the time, but I had the sense enough to know I loved him and needed to make peace with him in case he didn’t make it. My blood boiled when she wouldn’t let me talk to my dad. thinking about it today makes my blood boil.

My dad and her were married 20 years before they divorced because she had an affair. She turned their kids against my dad and broke his heart over it. It was a nasty divorce she was very vindictive and hateful. Now I know none of that is my issue. However, I am glad they aren’t together because now I have been able to have a relationship with my dad that I was unable to have because of her.

My dad now lives here in Oregon in my neighborhood. I see him everyday. I enjoy having him close, even though it’s difficult to have an ongoing conversation with him, but that’s just dad. I love him and love it that he is close.

He tells me last month that “she” invited him down for a BBQ so that he could see all the kids (all but two are grown) and grand kids. Instantly warning lights start flashing in my head. DANGER! DANGER! DANGER Will Robinson! I kept silent until just before he left to go to California. I told him I loved him. I also told him to guard his heart and be watchful. He left and came back. He said it was good to see all the kids and grand-babies. Then he drops the atomic bomb on me and that’s exactly how it felt. He told me “she” was coming up next month with the two youngest girls.

You know… I’m not worried about him having a relationship with the other kids. I know my dad has enough love in his heart for all 10 of his kids and 13 grand kids. My fear is that if he gets back with his EX, I will lose him again. She has never liked me and never pretended she did, except when dad was around. However, she made his life miserable if he even thought about me.

I thought I would never have to see her or deal with her ever again. I had buried her so deep I had forgotten how much I despise her. I know this doesn’t sound very Christian, not even a little bit. I have come to realize I have very deep seeded unforgiveness towards her. In fact, I feel hatred towards her. I have also come to realize how I don’t like the feeling it puts in my chest. It feels tight, like someone sitting on my chest. I know I have to forgive her. Not so much for her but for me.

I have always felt that if I forgive someone for the horrible things they have done to me, it’s like letting them off the hook. I have recently learned that is not the case. It is really letting me off the hook. It is freeing me. I know this to be true. However, it still doesn’t “FEEL” that way. Thank God we don’t have to live by feelings. I am able to walk in faith. So, I am asking for prayer to be able to walk this journey of forgiveness out in faith.

I would like to do this without having to talk to her or see her. Is that possible? I am really hoping that the Lord will allow me that. We’ll see.

Colossians 2:13-15
You were dead because of your sins and because your sinful nature was not yet cut away. Then God made you alive with Christ, for he forgave ALL our sins. He cancelled the record of the charges against us and took it away by nailing it to the cross. In this way, he disarmed the spiritual rulers and authorities. He shamed them publicly by his victory over them on the cross.