Category Archives: God

She Carried On

My friend lost her husband to a heart attack a few weeks ago. I wrote this short poem for her. Just thought I’d share:

 

 

 

 

 

She Carried On
By Patricia Potts
Dedicated to Margaret Millom

And so it was
That she carried on…
Despite the loss, despite the stress, despite the hills ahead…
She carried on
With fellow saints.
Onward, upward, with true grit and courage
Born of deep faith and countless hours and days
Of storing up the words of her Lord, the words of her leaders, the words of her heart
She carried on.
She tucked precious memories
Within the recesses of her heart…
And carried on.

The Guilt Trip that was Aborted

road

Help! I’ve been kidnapped and taken on another guilt trip. 

 

It was though guilt came in the form of stout and scowling Aunt Hilda.  She sweeps into my life, packs my bag full of past guilt trip paraphernalia.  When I ask what she is doing she answers gruffly “You asked for this.  I don’t like coming here like this any more than you do but you asked for it.  It is your fault.  It is always your fault!” When she is satisfied she pulls me like a small child across the hall, drags me down the stairs and out the front door, away from the security of home.  After effortlessly tossing my luggage up to the carriage driver she forces me into her four wheeled monster and hurries away from leaving peace and serenity far behind.  

 

Aunt Hilda is not a pleasant person to travel with.  She chatters constantly from the bouncy carriage seat with frayed, navy cloth reminding me of my mistakes as well as everyone around me.  She knows everything bad about everyone.  Sometimes our miserable trips last for minutes, sometimes weeks and a few times they have lasted for month.  

 

Her chatter seems endless but finally she begins repeating herself like a broken recording and I begin thinking of a way to escape.  Finally when I have “had it up to here” with her critical rendition I grasp at the faint memory of a past relief and cry out in prayer “Father, please cast Satan far from me.”  Abruptly the car comes to a halt.  Aunt Hilda’s balding head turns to stare at me.  She pouts and acts hurt as she throws my luggage from her carriage and pushes me out and I land face down in the dirt. 

 

She stays right where she is, glaring out the window.  I suppose she is waiting for me to come to my senses.   

 

By now I am standing on the deserted road like a figure from an old cowboy movie.  I wish she would go away, I wish I had a compass; I wish I had a bottle of water and I wonder how I can ever find my way back home alone.  Then you appear out of nowhere motioning for me to follow.  You are an ordinary person yet so extra ordinary.  I know you but I don’t know when we met.  I can trust you fully, completely.  I wonder if you can lead me back but then as though you read my mind you say “I can help you because I’ve been this way before.”

 

Aunt Hilda fades away as we walk along the well-worn road, patches of weeds line our way and the sound of the wind plays with the trees like harps in a musicians hands.  You remind me of good times, of things I have done right and you create pictures in my mind of past memories that embrace the essence of love and goodness, kindness and hope. 

 

Somehow the miles pass, the sun dips down in the forgiving sky and the horrors of my guilt trip fade away and are replaced with your hug or your arm occasionally loped across my weary shoulders.  At last I see home in the distance with its lights and soft music.  The trees bow across the road with honor and the crickets sing their happy welcome. 

 

I rush forward to stand on the front porch then look back only to find you are gone.  Vanished in the folds of the night yet somehow integrated in my heart and I smile as I open the welcome to my home.

My Loved One Gave the Gift of Life

anonymous-donor3
By Patricia Potts
patriciapotts.com

(Wherever possible my loved one wishes to keep his gift anonymous, so in keeping with this request I will not disclose his name.)

He allowed another person to reach inside of him and take his kidney so that another person could have life.

Those who are closest to him saw him give 20 – 30 hours prior to the surgery so he could be interviewed, poked, prodded and tested to make sure his kidney would be a good match for the recipient. In the mean time, the recipient went through poking, prodding and testing as well as training so that he could learn how to properly take care of his new kidney so that the gift would not have been given in vain.

At the hospital following surgery, I visited him. He and others like him painfully moved their scared bodies along the hallways of the hospital to begin the long recovery process their priceless gifts required.

In addition to the donors, many recipients roamed the halls of the hospital. One woman beamed when I asked what she was doing there. “I received a kidney and also a pancreas! I am about to have a whole new life” she declared!

And so, as I plan, buy and wrap Christmas gifts this year I will reflect on my anonymous friend and his sacrifice. I also find myself remembering another loved one, my brother Jesus Christ. I remember His sacrifice, His pain and His scars. When I feel joy, energy or gratitude I know it comes from the new heart He gave me. May I remember my own training, take excellent care of that heart and thank Jesus for the gift he so lovingly gave me so that his sacrifice for me may not be in vain.
christmas-gift-of-light1<

Our Daughter, Trisha found a NEW WAY to BRIGHTEN her day! -patriciapotts.com

tricycleNovember 10, 2008 entry:

http://dtsimonsmiles.blogspot.com/

Paper Prayers-patriciapotts.com

notesI confess. I am a notorious note-taker.  I am addicted to writing notes wherever go from church to seminars.  My husband can verify this vice.  Do I reread my notes?  Do I keep it up to win koodes from others so they will think I’m paying attention?  Do I write wrecklessly to keep myself from falling asleep or to make the presenter feel profound? Who knows.  Maybe the answer is “D” all of the above.  How long have I had this addiction?  I think from the time I could write.  

 

I confess.  My addiction has caused many a tree to fall, a box to be filled, a hungry waste basket to be fed and the total lbs. in our house to increase proportionately. 

 

I discovered, however, that after all these years of notes taking, the most powerful form for me is now “paper prayers.” My friends began telling me about it through books, emails and conversationsyears before I actually tried that type of praying and made it a part of my daily life.  They explained that praying on paper was similar to praying out loud without the sound sound-waveswaves.  They suggested that I simply write a letter back home to heaven.  Thanking, expressing concerns, asking questions and listening for the spirit to answer their prayers then recording their answers.

 

After watching their examples and seeing how much more peace this practice brought them  I finally I decided to begin my “capturing” on a beautiful summer day on my rocking chair and began my half hour daily of personal study with my trusty spiral notebook. I embarked on my paper prayer journey by addressing my Father then I let my thoughts, feelings, questions, requests and gratitude flow. Soon I began using symbols because they allowed me to say more in less time and helped me get to the “meat” of the conversation quicker.  The 3 symbols I use are hearts, arrows and question marks. 

 

To illustrate here is part of my paper prayer today:

 

Dear Father, Jesus and all my heavenly Helpers…

heart(heart) I thank thee for…

(heart)   a good nights sleep

(heart) Our home

(heart) Our dog

(heart) The fireplace

(heart) My painted toe nails…etc.

 

Please help me with…

arrow-up(arrow) My weakness in judging one of our children

(arrow) My right knee pain

(arrow) My marketing efforts for the two books we have written

(arrow) Racing thoughts

 

 

I was wondering…

question-mark(Question Mark) When can I find time to dejunk the computer area, the dresser in our room

…leave space for the answer…

(Question Mark) What is the best way to bring up clutter with the grandkids?

…leave space for the answer…

(Question Mark) Should I advertise again for my 3 guitar student openings?

…leave space for the answer…

 

 

Well, you get the idea.  When I ask questions I allow for plenty of room to write the answers.  Sometimes the answers come quickly.  Sometimes they come after reading scriptures or some other inspirational thing.  Sometimes they come during the day or later. 

 

Either way, when they come it is a miracle and I can relate to the quote in First-Aid for Feelings that reads:

 

If I sat at the feet of Jesus and listened to His words, I believe I would

have pen and paper in hand to capture the peace and wisdom that

would flow from Him. When I receive inspiration, promptings and

directions from His Spirit, why is it that I so often fail to write it down?

(Patricia Potts)

 

 

So, for all you note-taking addicts out there (and those of you who just want to try a very spiritually rewarding experience) I challenge you.  Go ahead, increase your paper-load, use up those pens and mechanical pencils. I promise that this is one addiction you will want to keep! 

     

 

Codependent Bookmark: From Darkness to Light

 


  • Except when instructed by the spirit take your love

 to your loved one, your frustrations to the Lord.

  • If what your doing hasn’t worked the first 1000 times

 why do you think it will work the 1001st time?

  • Teach him true principles then respect his right to choose
  • Do what we can to help him feel a part of the family
  • Am I honoring his agency and letting life teach their lessons?
  • Men are that they might be free to choose liberty and eternal

 life or captivity and death.

  • Don’t worry.  The world will teach him. My efforts won’t

speed up the process but they may slow it down!

  • He values sleep, play and friends. W value integrity, work

 and family. We may not agree with him right now but perhaps

 by accepting him where he’s at I may be able to stop judging and

start allowing him to be on mile 2 instead of expecting mile 5.

  • Forgive him, Father, for he knows not what he does.
  • It is as it is…it cannot be otherwise
  • It is not my job to compel, coerce or prod
  • War didn’t humble them- only famine did
  • Remember the prodigal’s son.
  • Every knee shall bend…
  • They (the rebels) will return unto me.
  • He granteth  unto men according to their

Desires.

For more help see patriciapotts.com or you

can purchase My Journey from Darkness to Light

through Amazon.com. 

Depressurizing Part 2!!! …..Fear,Stress

Once I prayerfully prioritized, I felt a release of time tension but I knew emotional garbage clogging up my ability to function.  I then recalled the lessons the Lord taught me the law of the vacuum:

 

Cleaning Out My Vacuum Cleaner

One morning when I turned on my vacuum cleaner, it made a loud whiney sound as if to say, “leave me alone!”  Then to make matters worse it spit dust into the air causing me to sneeze.  Next it refused to pick up a thing!  Coughing and sneezing, I turned it off, and sighed, resigning myself to the disagreeable task of opening it up and pulling out the bag.  As soon as I got the bag off it was easy to see why it couldn’t pick anything up.  It was clogged with dirt all the way along the hose! 

What an appropriate analogy for my own life I thought!   Too often I let my emotions build up and “clog” things up instead of cleaning them out.

 

I’ve found that there are many ways to process negative thoughts.  Here is the one I used this morning.  I simply opened up my notebook/planner, found a place with plenty of paper, made columns and started writing:

 

1.Thoughts   2.Feelings    3.Is This True for Sure?         4. Feelings

                                                           

I’ll never be able to do all my A’s this week (“Why should that matter?”)

Fear, Stress

Yes (No human could!)

Amused

If I don’t do them God will be disappointed (“Why should that matter?”)

Sad

No (God loves me unconditionally)

Defiant

I’ll get behind.  I will feel awful and stressed (“Why should that matter?”) 

Stressed, mad at myself

No (If I am living one prayer at a time I can make progress and that can be good enough)

Peace

Then I’ll get sick (“Why should that matter?”)

Fear

No (It is possible but if I choose to live one prayer at a time it is less likely)

Accepting

If I get sick I can’t get stuff done (“Why should that matter?”)

Fear

No (My external to-do’s may be at a stand-still but if I get sick maybe God wants me to work on my heart and mind) 

Accepting

If I don’t get stuff done I’m worthless (THIS IS THE ROOT OF THE STRESS)

Fear

NO.  I am not a human-doing. I am a human-being.  I CAN live one prayer at a time and choose priorities through inspiration instead of desperation!                           

Free

 

As you can see, the 20 minutes it took to do this exercise was well worth the time.  I was able to breathe easier, thank God more naturally and love  others without the uptight stance I took earlier.

 

My friend, Darla, calls these kind of exercises Truth Therapy.  I think she is right on.  I believe that Satan wants us to be stuck in lies and worry and fear.  He would want us to keep vacuuming with clogged bags  but we can choose to dump the junk and choose light, truth and love.

 

I have to admit that even though I have used this type of therapy for years I still find myself procrastinating.  I don’t want to make the time to get into it. One of the things that has helped me is the one-page “circle the answer” form I developed and put as a free download in my website patriciapotts.com.

I must take a minute to thank Darla Isackson for introducing me to this kind of processing and Dr. David Burns for sharing ideas and forms in his book Feeling Good, Byron Katie in her book Loving What is and the many people who have shared ideas during support groups I have attended in Twelve-Step Recovery Programs. Additional ideas and applications can be found in My Journey from Darkness to Light.

 

 I believe that true personal peace comes only through our Brother and Savior Jesus Christ but I also believe he has given us Truth Tools to help us!

 

          Whether you begin to uncover your truths using ideas from this blog, these books, scriptures or some other source… Try it! You’ll like it!

Depressurize with Dots and Dashes!!! Part One

Depressurizing with Dot Dashes!!! Part one

 

 

This morning I woke with “to-do lists” swimming around in my mind.  It reminded me of a video I watched where hundreds of minnows were swarming around a giant fish. 

 

“How can I possibly do it all today” I asked myself.

 

“You can’t” came the answer.

 

An idea from My Journey from Darkenss to Light came to my mind

 

I only have from 8:00 – 12:00 (I have another commitment at 12) = 4 hours

 

Planned Tasks

(one dot = 15 minutes.  One slash = 1 hour. 

1 (Unplanned Stuff)

1.. Laundry-wash, fold, put away

   Dishes

….. Kitchen cleaned

.. Personal Study

…Shower and Dress

.. Exercise

……Get Groceries

.. E-mail

.. Calls

______

8 ¾ hrs. I only have 4 hours to work with (no wonder I feel overwhelmed!)

 

As I evaluate what is MOST important. I use ABC priorities.

A= very important to do in this time frame  (A must!)

B= important but could be done another day (Can BE done another day.)

C= I’d like to do it when I have a chance  (Do when I have a CHANCE.)

 

***Pause to pray for wisdom***

 

ABC Example:

     B ..  Laundry (change laundry. Leave the rest for later

     B ..  Kitchen cleaned (quick straightening and dishwasher)

A .. Personal Study

A .. Shower and dress (quick shower, pull hair back)

     B .. Exercise

     B / Get Groceries

A . Emails (I am expecting an important email)

     B .. Calls

A / Unexpected (I know it will happen)

Add up dots and slashes:

2 ¼ hours Total A’s

2 ¾ total B’s

Now all I have to do is eliminate some of the B’s

 

I then turned to a blank page in my notebook/planner and began my “depressurizing” exercise. 

 

Today my depressurizing included calls, cleaning house, marketing for my book, teaching guitar, commitments to family and friends, seeing the Chiropractor  and unplanned. 

 

The Chiropractor visit wasn’t in my plans at all until I woke up with neck pain.  I have to admit that I especially resent unplanned time demands.  I try to remind myself to be more like Mary and say Be it unto me according to thy (will).

 

I had 7 hours to work with and my demands exceeded 10 hours so I did the dot-dash thing like an old fashioned Moris Code person.  In the end I cut it to 6 hours 45 minutes!

 

Sometimes I think “I don’t have time to do the dot-dashes but the truth is, I save time because I am able to prayerfully seek the right priorities and work on them with more purpose and less spinning wheels.

 

See part II later this week…

Depression,Fear,God: I Dreamed of Drowning in Murky Waters

Good Morning Dear Friend,

 

Last night I had a dream.

 

In my dream I was thrust into the ugly, cold, dull-green waters of a lake. There was darkness all around when reality replaced shock and I was paralyzed for an instant.  I.  felt cold waters begin to wrap me in their tentacles as surely as a spider must bundle her prey. Knowing that I had precious little time to escape, I began fighting. I kicked my legs and tried by sheer energy and determination to get to the top but it seemed I was only going deeper.  Exhausted and scared beyond belief I finally started looking for where the light was and began focusing on the light as I swam slowly upward. 

 

It was not until then that I discovered I had a life jacket on. By now my energy was mostly spent and I stopped fighting.  As I trusted the life jacket to do it’s job I began ascending more rapidly but I was almost out of air.  My husband Dan swim downward in a panic and passed within a foot of where I was been but I didn’t have the strength to touch him as he swished by.  “Whether I make it or whether I don’t,” I prayed “I will put my trust in thee God, either way.

 

As I slowly floated upward memories of family members began filtering through my heart and my tears mingled with the apathetic, cloudy waters of the lake.

 

Then suddenly and completely I surfaced.  My lungs burned, my limbs shook and I was nearly frozen but I was alive because I finally stopped fighting what is and began trusting in the life jacket of God’s care and love.  It was God’s power and my trust that allowed me to ascend to the light.

 

My dream ended.

 

I awoke gasping for air and sat up in my bed feeling very grateful to be alive.  I then began asking what this had to do with real life.  I don’t know about you, but I didn’t have too far to look to find that progress will come only when I am willing to “let Go and let God” help me in matters of parenting, the financial crisis the country is in, headaches and other things. It brought a calmness to my thoughts and a deeper trust to my heart.  I hope it helps you in the same way. 

 

I’d love to hear your stories and experiences about the power of trust in crisis as well.

 

Your friend,

Patricia   

patripotts@mstarmetro.net

patriciapotts.com