Christmas Update 2018

Christmas Update 2018

Christmas 2018 Newsletter

Matthew 1:21: “She will give birth to a Son, and you are to give Him the name Jesus, because He will save His people from their sins.”

It is so easy to get focused on the problems all around us. Our country is experiencing the worst addiction epidemic in its history. In 2017, more people died of drug overdose and alcohol than died in the entire Korean War and Vietnam War combined. And for every person who is part of the statistics, there are family members and friends grieving the loss of their loved one. It is easy to become overwhelmed and think that we can do so little to make a difference in this battle, and yet we have been called to be a light in the midst of the darkness, to point the way to the one true hope of freedom: Jesus.  The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly (John 10:10). Our prayer is that we will be that small drop of water that falls into a placid lake so that the ripple effect spreads across the whole body of water. We want people to see Jesus in the midst of their fear and pain and know that He is the only answer to being set free.

My Daddy's Eyes

My Dad's portrait hangs in a prominent place at a lifecare center he helped to start. As I walk out to my car after visiting there, I always go by his very lifelike picture.  One of the traits of this portrait that has been commented on by many people is that his eyes seem to follow you as you walk by. Though my dad has been in Heaven for 10 years, I still imagine his watchful eyes on me as I walk by.

September, 2018 Update

Beside Still Waters: Discovering Peace in the Midst of Your Child's Addiction

We were blessed recently to be able to republish the book Beside Still Waters: Discovering Peace in the Midst of Your Child's Addiction through Christian Faith Publishing. This story began with a very enthusiastic woman, Ann, who attended the LTTL group at Keswick and called Christian Faith Publishing, very emphatically telling them that they needed to pick up our book. We received a call from the literary agent and the rest is history. Our church, Bayside Chapel, and the Carole Mastroddi Foundation covered the cost of republishing, which was a huge blessing! CFP did a wonderful job with every area of the book, from the editing to the cover design, and we are excited to see where Father will take the book as a result of this step of faith. The book can be purchased at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Apple books.

August 26, 2018, at Friendship Bible Church

August 26, 2018, at Friendship Bible Church

Cherri and I will be sharing our testimonies this Sunday at Friendship Bible Church, 4004 Ocean Heights Ave in Egg Harbor Twp. A huge part of our testimony is how Father continues to use us through our ministry, Love Them To Life, where Jesus provides,” help and hope for family and friends of addicts”! Service begins at 10:30. Please pray for us and feel free to encourage us.We need our Jesus and we need your support. Thanks!

Blessings

“We pray for blessings, we pray for peace

Comfort for family, protection while we sleep

We pray for healing, for prosperity

We pray for your mighty hand to ease our suffering

And all the while, You hear each spoken need

Yet love us way too much to give us lesser things

‘Cause what if your blessings come through raindrops

What if Your healing comes through tears

Deeper

As we go through the fear that comes from having a child in addiction, it is so easy to allow that fear to consume us. We live it, we breathe it, we virtually bleed it until it seems that there is nothing left of the person we were intended to be. Any brightly colored joy we may have felt in the past seems to be painted over by a dull aching gray.

Fixers

Love Them To Life is not about “fixing” our kids’ addiction problems, but rather it is about learning to trust Father. We want to help our children do the right things. We want to keep them from overdosing or going to jail. We want to find out the way to make them more responsible or to help them see how they are destroying their lives. We get happiness from “fixing” our children  because it shows that we are needed, that we have value, and that we stand in the gap between them and the consequences of their actions. All the while we are helping dig their graves and nailing the lids on their coffins. While those are tough words, they are true. When we don’t allow our kids to experience the consequences of their actions, they have no motivation to change. Fixing is enabling and enabling can lead to death.

Thankful... For This?

“You mean I am supposed to be thankful for my child being in addiction?  I am to thank God that they are destroying their lives and our hearts in the process?  All the darkness and ugliness that has taken them over – even for that?”

It is so much easier to thank God in spite of the circumstances, to rise above, so to speak, and thank Him for keeping us through the pain and heartache.  It is a whole different thing to thank Him for the situation and the ripping, shredding, violently consuming agony we are experiencing.

Poem - I Need To Get High

This is not easy to read but it will help those of us who are parents of children in addiction to understand more clearly the terrible choices that threatens the very life of our child.

 

I NEED To Get High.

I’m your child, or spouse, or friend.
But I’ve changed.
I don’t care about you.
Not in the way you want me to.
I care about getting high.
I WANT to get high.
I will do ANYTHING to get high.
I LOVE getting high.
I NEED to get high..
and I will step over you to do it.

The Valley of Weeping

Happy are those who are strong in the Lord, who set their minds on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. When they walk through the Valley of Weeping (Baca), it will become a place of refreshing springs, where pools of blessing collect after the rains! (Psalm 84: 5-6 NLT)

I often feel as if the Valley of Weeping is where I live, not somewhere I am just passing through.  The pain of destructive marriages and of children in addiction has been a part of my life for a long time. The pain of watching my husband suffer for the past 5 years with a debilitating and deadly disease drills into me every day.