The breath of life

“God of Your promise
You don’t speak in vain
No syllable empty or void

For once You have spoken
All nature and science
Follow the sound of Your voice And as You speak
A hundred billion creatures catch Your breath
Evolving in pursuit of what You said
If it all reveals Your nature so will I
I can see Your heart in everything You say
Every painted sky
A canvas of Your grace
If creation still obeys You so will I” song: So will I, 100 billion x

I remember hearing song posted above and it captivated me instantly. Songs don’t really do that to me anymore, whether secular or worship music but this one caught me off guard. “For once you have spoken, All nature and science follow the sound of your voice.” That lyric in particular, catches me. If everything, spare humans are as God intended, and they still follow the sound of His voice, what was His initial instruction to us?

God spoke: “Let us make human beings in our image, make them
        reflecting our nature
    So they can be responsible for the fish in the sea,
        the birds in the air, the cattle,
    And, yes, Earth itself,
        and every animal that moves on the face of Earth.”
    God created human beings;
        he created them godlike,
    Reflecting God’s nature.
        He created them male and female.
    God blessed them:
        “Prosper! Reproduce! Fill Earth! Take charge!
    Be responsible for fish in the sea and birds in the air,
       for every living thing that moves on the face of Earth.” Genesis 1:26-28

I chose the message version for some of the wording— the words, being “responsible for the earth”, rather than the word “subdue” which some misunderstand for being domineering or controlling, treating however we wish, which I don’t believe was God’s intention. In the NIV, God instructs Adam and Eve to be fruitful and multiply. Multiply of course was make other little Adam’s and Eve’s but being fruitful is another, rather large subject. Jesus spoke a lot about fruitfulness. When God breathed life into Adam and also created Eve, they too, like the song, began to evolve in pursuit of what God said. And so we know how things fell apart quickly and so sin came into their perfect world God had created. They were cast out, to live in a sin shadowed land. Adam and Eve were the original light bearers. They could no longer bear that light because they invited darkness in. But let me ask you something. If Jesus restored the light by dying on a cross for us, taking up sin and death and even illnesses, isn’t our original relationship status with Papa restored?

Because of what Christ did, our relationship is restored to God. Our responsibility here is to be fruitful (expand the territory, bear the fruit of Christ) and multiply in number and also take care of or be responsible for the earth and all of it’s inhabitants. Christ lives within us, we ought to bear the fruit of Christ. We are responsible for the planet, one rather large goal of ours should be to reduce waste and our carbon footprints. We are responsible for animals, we should take care to not slaughter them to satisfy our appetites. (Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. Genesis 1:29)  This place, these animals, these people aren’t “things” that we can do as we please, this is our responsibility to steward it well. I feel like this is often a subject many won’t approach because it is a subject people become very passionate about or can be viewed in other ways or in other versions, the wording is different. Think about it, we were restored to our original plan for relationship with God. God walked in the cool of the evening with Adam, they spoke, God knew Adam and Adam knew God. You could say they did life together. When God looks at you, He sees what His Son did, not the darkness that broke out and cast it’s shadow over Eden.

What is fruitfulness then? Fruitfulness is lighting other peoples torches whose are still snuffed out. It is demonstrating your identity through love and action.

We all know the fruits of the spirit from Galatians 5:22-23,
“But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!” This is merely an outline of fruitfulness. Bearing fruit is so much more. It isn’t just a plan that works out so that you can glorify God. It isn’t just sharing the gospel with someone. It isn’t just filling up a backpack for needy children at the start of the school year. It isn’t “getting people saved,” or moving in the gifts of the spirit. These are great things, I am not speaking against them, I am saying they are not just these things. It is a lifestyle of never ending heavenly expansion, knowing that everywhere you go, you bring the kingdom with you. That even in your darkest hours and on your worst days, you still live and breathe Christ crucified and what He came to restore to you. That even when life squeezes you, Jesus still comes out. The hopeless need to see hope. The loveless need to feel love, not judgement. The lost need their footpath lit for them because after all someone else did that for you at some point! The Holy Spirit with produce these fruits for you. You need only yield to Him. How else can we be enabled to live like that, still having hope in the midst of trials, other than by the power of God? Other people need to see it, this is the kind of fruit people need to see. This is the kind of stuff that make people wonder why you’re so different than everybody else. Allow the Holy Spirit to work this within you.

We have a job here, a directive. Jesus was the exact representation of the Father while on the earth, our job is the same. He handed over the keys to us when He left, then sent His Spirit to give us the ability. There is nothing that is truly fruitful that we can do apart from the Father. Our world has been turned into a mess because of man’s perceived notion of fruitfulness. Man has lined his pockets with the monies made from his “fruitfulness.” It is high time we get our heads screwed back on straight and pick up where Jesus left off. We don’t have another earth to run to once this one is destroyed. If you think animals voluntarily go off to the slaughter and not cry out when they are killed, you are sorely mistaken. If you think someone else will make up for your rudeness, you’re wrong. Let’s love and respect everyone and everything because each are a gift from God. When He originally created everything, He said it was good. It is still good, we just have to get back to treating it like it is good, treating everything and everyone with love and respect.

Your relationship with Papa has been fully restored, there was no part of it that He didn’t take account for or miss. Let us live accordingly. I do know, this life, this walk with Jesus is a life long process. It is a day to day, sometimes minute by minute thing, matching His steps, one at a time. If we don’t have revelation about who we are called to be, then how can we, “Evolve in pursuit of what You said?” If we are uncertain of what He said, He left behind an entire book. And if that isn’t enough, He sent His Spirit. The wrong things begin to repulse us after a while, whether it is thinking patterns or habits. We no longer fit in the old mold from which we came, it’s terribly uncomfortable going back. So, let’s not go back anymore, let’s continue to move forward and evolve. Christ by His spirit will enable us to do so. Oh thank you Father that I am not who I once was! Oh friends, doesn’t that feel good? You have been restored. You are redeemed. You are made whole. You are dearly, dearly loved!

The medical carousel

“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” Hippocrates

When I became a mom again, I didn’t picture myself stepping into the shoes of hardcore medical advocate. Nor did I think it would be such a fight to ensure my daughter gets what she needs and avoids what she does not need. For those of you who are not familiar with myself or my family and have had no introduction to my former blog sites, I can give you a quick run down.

Our little princess was born in March of 2014 with a rare chromosome abnormality called partial trisomy 9&12. So rare that she is the only one in the world with it. We were given generalized ideas of what to expect with Lily but no solidified answers. So, for the last 5 years we have been blazing a new path in the wild Amazon of medical phenomena. Lily is 5 but is said to have the developmental capacity of a 4-6 month old. In fact, just a few weeks ago she spoke the most blessed word (her only word) I had only dreamt of hearing, Mama. I cannot put into words the joy that filled my heart upon hearing her say Mama.

After numerous surgeries; many specialist visits, appointments, therapies and hours spent in frustration and tears, I feel like we are mostly where we have always been but it looks a bit different. Lily stopped eating last summer entirely. Her reflux was so violent that she lost her desire for food. We had been told by many doctors that she did not have acid reflux or GERD but after having a visit with the top reflux specialist in the world, it was finally confirmed, the very thing I had been asserting all along. We were left with no other choice but to have a j-gtube put in her stomach. There was a part of me that had felt like we had failed her, we couldn’t make the reflux stop so that eating by mouth was enjoyable. Let me tell you, we had tried everything imaginable! I cried out to God on many occasions leading up to executing the inevitable. It was either follow through with surgery or helplessly continue to watch her health decline. Of course we did it. It was terrifying but a relief at the same time. We weren’t going to go through the daily struggle anymore of whether or not she will eat her food.

Lily has a tether again. Much like she did when she was on oxygen for the first 6 months of her life. The tether looks like a leash to me; walls, constriction, limitations. I want to cut the tether. Not metaphorically but truly get rid of it. I want to cut the tether to the insurance companies who, if her stuff isn’t billed right or the deductible isn’t met decides not to ship her life giving food and other medical supplies. Do you realize how disgusting that is? Insurance companies decide who gets to live based on what you can afford or if your prescriptions are billed correctly and if not, you don’t get what you need? That isn’t medical care, it’s control and a very sick way of playing god. And I use a lowercase g because there is only One true God, not mere humans who thrive on policies and quotas rather than helping innocent lives flourish.

If I could only express adequately what special needs parents go through just to get their kids what they need I’m quite certain your jaw would hit the ground. I had all of Lily’s deliveries lined up about a month before we moved out of the Midwest. We came to California to get well. We came here for the more consistent weather; the fresh produce, my husbands cancer treatment center (I’ll be writing about this soon) the ample sunshine, the list goes on. So far, honestly, Lily seems happier here. She was effected terribly by the weather systems that moved through Wisconsin on a daily basis, the temperature and barometer swinging wildly every single day. She and I both are human barometers, we both can feel it in our heads when a new pressure system is moving in. It’s not exactly a blessing but I am glad to say, I have not had a headache since being here and I don’t have any reason to believe she has either.

Cutting the cord isn’t going to be easy but we need to regain control of Lily’s health and health plan. I am indebted to the medical staff in Milwaukee for the life saving surgeries they performed on her, she would not be here without them. Now that we have the ease of being able to feed her without the worry of whether or not she will eat what we offer her, it is time to reconfigure her food intake. We need to get her weight back up. For the last 4 months she has been on juice during the day, reaching 68mls an hour. I am hoping to transition her to bulk feeds via a syringe. I had attempted it before with little success due to continued reflux but now that her reflux has drastically improved because of the pure fresh pressed fruit juices everyday, I think it is time to try again.

This isn’t where I saw myself or my family. I never thought I would have to be a medical expert on a bunch of stuff more people have never heard of or been exposed to. I never thought I would be researching the things I have had to research. But I don’t think you can find freedom in all of this until you go through the various stages of grief and acceptance, eventually moving onward and upward. You can’t just camp there. We didn’t ask for this, nor did Lily. Lily depends on us to not camp in our sorrow and to make decisions that may not please all parties involved. I have done my share of arguing my position of why we do or don’t do certain things on Lily’s behalf and I’m not afraid to continue to do it either. I will do what is in her best interest even if no one else understands or supports it. One day when I leave this world I will give an account, that is the only thing I am concerned about. Not what this or that specialist says. I have often come to the conclusion that if it doesn’t make sense to the majority of the people around you, it is Spirit led. I’m sitting here shaking my head with a smile on my face. It’s true. If it’s impossible but you can see the outcome, it’s God. Sometimes you can’t see the outcome but you know that you are supposed to do something a certain way, go, do it. Don’t be afraid, God will guide you. Rely on Him, He is already where you are headed. THAT is comforting.

This is a long hike, we reach plateaus and resting places but we haven’t arrived yet. We just keep seeking Papa’s face every single day to give us the next move to make. I am tossing out my preconceived notions and ideas, the way I think everything should look. The vast majority of my pain has been grieving over what I thought should have been. There is freedom in taking things as they are and relinquishing those things to God to bring good from them. He has no intention to harm us or punish us for some unrepented sin. You died and were raised with Christ a brand new creation and your goodness is because of His goodness. We were meant to be free in this life, we don’t need to be enslaved to rules; fences, limitations and ideologies. All things are possible through Christ. God is Lily’s healer, Jehova Rapha! He put the medicine in the food. He had a plan for all the disease we would encounter here in our lifetimes. He foresaw everything. We just need to return to that plan. It isn’t a plan to ruin your mealtime fun and enjoyment, we just weren’t meant to eat many of the things we do eat. Our household is realigning itself with the original plan and within it, freedom. Many blessings friends, I hope this blessed someone today.