Transitional Friday: Why Doesn’t God Answer My Prayer

God hearsFor years I waited, longing and struggling to change and improve my circumstances and situation.  After leaving an abusive relationship, the journey to heal and recover took years.

I wondered if I would ever find the person I’d lost along the path.

I longed to be able to stand on my own two feet and to find a way to do this, but nothing seemed to be working.

I wondered if God heard my cries and prayers!  Had He forsaken me!  Would my circumstances ever improve?

Don’t get me wrong, my circumstances weren’t awful and were a whole lot better than they had been in the abusive relationship.  I just wanted more to my life.  There are still things, such as a family, that only God knows if and when that prayer will be answered.

God reminded me:God answers

  1. His reasons are often beyond are grasp
  2. He hears all of our prayers, cries, and tears
  3. His way is better than my way
  4. He is preparing me for a future that only He knows
  5. His timing is not my timing
  6. Sometimes His answer is no or not right now
  7. It’s not all about me.  There are times we are where we are to help someone else.  One example is being a caregiver.

What have you learned in the wait?

Caregiver Monday: Warning Signs of Burnout for Caregivers

Caregivers often get burned out.  We are often caring around the clock for ourselves and {at least} one other individual.  Some signs of burnout are:

  • Excessive stress and tension

    Do You Struggle with Caregiver Burnout?
    Do You Struggle with Caregiver Burnout?
  • Debilitating depression
  • Persistent anxiety, anger, or guilt
  • Extreme irritability or anger with the patient
  • Decreased overall life satisfaction
  • Relationship conflicts and social isolation
  • Lower immunity and greater need for healthcare services
  • Excessive use of medications, drugs, or alcohol
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Mood swings
  • Loneliness
  • Exhaustion


Physical warning signs of burnout:headache

  • Stooped posture
  • Sweaty palms
  • Tension headaches
  • Neck pain
  • Chronic back pain
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Weight gain or loss
  • Problems with sleep

Behavioral warning signs of burnout:

  • Overreacting
  • Acting on impulseburnout
  • Using alcohol or drugs
  • Withdrawing from relationships
  • Changing jobs often

Transitional Friday: 7 Lessons Learned from Discouragement





There have been times when I wondered if anything was going my way.

No matter how hard I tried or how much effort I put into the endeavor nothing seemed to work.

This led to great disappointment and discouragement.  There were days when depression hit and I nothing could lift my mood.

When discouraged, I have to remind myself that:discouragement quote

  1. This too shall pass
  2. God is preparing me for something better
  3. God has a better plan
  4. There is a reason for this
  5. I need to spend more time in God’s word and in prayer seeking His will
  6. I need to work off the depression
  7. My circumstances don’t identify me as a person

What has discouragement taught you?

Caregiver Monday: What to Look For When Hiring a Caregiver

You can hire caregivers from an agency or on a freelance basis.  Different individuals have different preferences.  Personally, I prefer the freelance basis.  That way if I don’t feel an assignment is a good fit, I have the choice to say no thank you and walk away.

Other people swear by hiring someone from an agency.  You have to decide what you prefer.

Choose a Caregiver that meets your needs
Choose a Caregiver that meets your needs

There are pros and cons to either choice.  Research your options to find the solution that will best fit your circumstances.

With an agency, caregivers are:

  • Licensed
  • Bonded
  • Insured
  • Often have workman’s compensation coverage


My best piece of advice is to interview the caregiver and make sure the individual is a good fit with you {you will essentially be the one in charge}, the person being cared for and the overall situation.

When you interview a prospective caregiver make sure you:

Make sure the caregiver’s physical abilities match your needs

Define the duties and expectations of the job

Feel comfortable with that person and leaving the senior adult with this person

Transitional Friday: 10 Lessons I learned from Job Searching

not hiring






Even before unemployment kicked in, I spent two years searching for a position.

Searching for a job is very overwhelming and frustrating.

What I learned is:got work

  1. There are so many options it is overwhelming
  2. There are times when there seems to be no options to choose from
  3. Narrowing down a job position is essential
  4. Although I want to rush the process, the company has other concerns that can slow things
  5. Networking is essential
  6. Persistence pays off
  7. I must have confidence in myself and my abilities
  8. Seek help from anyone and everyone possible—the least they can say is no
  9. In time the right fit will come along
  10. God is in control and has a plan

What lessons have you learned?

Caregiving Monday: Personalities are Magnified in a Caregiving Situation

There are a number of personalities and every person is different.  Likewise every caregiving situation is different in some ways from all others.

Each person brings their own personality to the dynamics
Each person brings their own personality to the dynamics




One of the different things to keep in mind is the different ways the various personalities relate with one another.

In the case for my grandmother, she is very passive and we often wish she would be more vocal about her needs and wants.  My mom is the peace maker and calm one.  She keeps the peace.  I’m the passionate one.  I’m very protective and vocal when I notice an injustice or disservice towards my grandmother.

With the lady I sit with, there are three primary caretakers.  The three of us are very different and diverse in our personalities, interest and attitudes.  However, the three of us balance one another out.  One characteristic that is a weakness to one person may be a strength to another.

When dealing with the loved one you’re caring for, siblings, aunts and uncles, cousins, mixture of personalitiesfriends or other people assisting with the care of your loved one, then you have to find the balance that works best for you.  The one thing you want is to keep the environment calm and safe for your loved one.

Often I hear stories of the person receiving care being the volatile person.  This makes the situation a lot more different.  When I was caring for my ex-husband’s grandfather, there were times when he was never happy no matter what was tried.  On more than one occasion I had the plate of spaghetti I fixed for his dinner thrown at the wall because he wanted to be contrary.  This is difficult to deal with on a constant basis.  Again the mix of personalities will dictate the best way to deal with this situation.  All I can say is pray hard, remain calm, allow space if possible and seek help when necessary.

Transitional Friday: 10 Lessons I Learned from Unemployment

unemployment line      For ten months I was unemployed, following the death of my boss.

Even before my job ended, I faced a cut in hours.

Unemployment is frustrating due to the financial instability and uncertainty.  There are moments when hopes are raised only to be dashed and other moments when life and circumstances seem hopeless.

As we’ve discussed in the past, for everything there is a season.  However, it is difficult to see over the horizon at times.

What I learned from unemployment:unemployment

  1. This is a learning and growth opportunity
  2. You will be tested and tried
  3. For every job, there are numerous others also applying for them
  4. Sometimes we have to be patient for God to orchestrate the necessary events for the job He has for us
  5. God may want me to go in a new direction
  6. This is an opportunity to pursue my creative dreams
  7. This is a great time to volunteer
  8. Networking is essential
  9. This is a great time to dig deep, discover who I am meant to be and God’s will for my life
  10. God will always provide for basic needs, but not our wants

What have you learned from unemployment?

Creativity Thursday: 7 Ways to Recover from a Bad Review

bad 2



The song has been written, the portrait painted or the book written, but none of these are well received.

The critics are harsh, your fans are not impressed and nothing is selling.

So what do we do?

  1. We cry—allow yourself the opportunity to mourn for the project
  2. We gather feedback—at times critics can be harsh, but are there tips that you can use in that critic.  How about the feedback from your fans?  What are they saying?bad
  3. We re-evaluate—we take the information from our critics and fans and re-evaluate that information.  What parts of this is valid?
  4. We are brutally honest with ourselves—this is difficult to be so brutally honest with ourselves about our “baby”.   Why did this not work?  Was this a pet project?  Was this a process that was cathartic or helped through grief?  Was this a project just for us?
  5. We revamp—is this something we want to improve?  Does the book or song need rewriting? Is there one particular area that needs the most work?
  6. We move on—sometimes the best thing is to move on to another project and put our failure on the backburner.   Later on we can decide if we want to revisit it.
  7. We learn from the process—life and art is a learning experience.  Not everything is going to be a hit!  In the beginning of our careers, especially, there is a steep learning curve.  What can we learn?  How can this process help us to be a better individual and a better artists?


How do you recover from a bad review?

Caregiving Monday: Why We Don’t Like to Be Reminded of Our Own Mortality

GG* has only one first cousin left on her mother’s side of the family.  Recently, another first cousin passed away.   GG’s  first reaction was “I’m the oldest now.” death

She said this with a badge of honor, that she was the oldest of the cousins.  However, there was also the unstated statement of “I’m next in line.”

Although she did not verbalize this statement, it was obvious this statement was on her mind.

The older senior adults become, the more aware they seem to become of their own mortality.  Some are more than ready to pass over when the time comes, while others are scared of fighting over.

I’ve discovered that many adults that have a personal relationship with Jesus are prepared for death, while those that do not have a relationship are scared.

However, there are also other factors that play into this feeling and belief.  For each person that feeling and belief is different.

What is important is to have an understanding of your senior adults feelings towards growing older and their own mortality.  Don’t be scared to ask why they have this feeling!

What issues have you dealt with?


*Name altered

Transitional Friday: When Divorce Strikes

divorce Most people do not enter marriage thinking, “one day we will divorce.”

However, over the last three decades the divorce rate has continued to grow to include over half of the population.

I’d like to believe that most people enter marriage thinking “this is the man or woman I plan to spend the rest of my life with.”

There are a variety of reasons why marriages do not work out, but irreconcilable differences and finances are two of the most common reasons provided.

Divorce isn’t easy.  When a couple decides to divorce, this means the end of their hopes, plans and dreams together as a couple.

If you are going through a divorce or know someone going through one, a few things to keep in mind are:

1. This is a transition that takes time and adjustment.divorce 2

2. Pray and seek God’s will for your life.  Where is He leading you and what is He saying about these changes?

3. Time heals all wounds

4. Healing takes time–we all heal at different rates.  There is no set answer for how long healing can and should take.  The important thing to remember is to allow yourself this time to heal.

5. Do not rush–you can’t rush the healing.  Give yourself the necessary time you need.

6. Focus on yourself–this means to focus on figuring out who you are, your new goals and plans, seek God’s will for the next step and review your dreams.

7. Do not rush into a new relationship–give yourself time to recover from the previous relationship before rushing into a new one.  Most counselors suggest a year, but take longer if you need it.

8. Don’t be afraid to dream–what dreams do you have that were not achievable in the past relationship?  Are they achievable now?  What steps do you need to achieve them?divorce decree

9. Healing is a process–healing takes time and is not a step that can be rushed.  Give yourself the time to work through the steps of healing that are necessary.

10. Do not be afraid to seek help–do not be afraid to seek professional help from a counselor.

11. Join a support group–groups such as Divorce Care and Celebrate Recovery are wonderful resources for working through this difficult and challenging time in life.

12. Nothing is impossible with God–whether you’re rebuilding your life from scratch, seeking reconciliation, or pursuing new dreams, nothing is impossible with God.   Share your heart with Him, seek His path for your life and be willing to follow His lead.  He’ll never lead you wrong.

13. Be careful what you share and who you share it with.  It is easy to share our hurts with everyone but this can later come back to do us more harm than good.   Remember the old saying, the less said the less to take back.

14. Not everyone will understand–to the outside world you may have been the perfect couple.  Also, if a person hasn’t been divorced they may not understand.  divorce 3

15. Don’t allow your emotions to guide you–divorce is an emotional time and it is easy to act accordingly.  Take time to stop, think and pray about a situation before reacting.

16. There is hope–things will eventually get better.   The key is giving them time and waiting out the storm that is passing by.

17. Find a way to communicate–if children are involved, you will continue to have some part in one another’s lives.  Finding a way to communicate and tolerate one another for special events is important for the family.

18.  Don’t put other’s in the middle–don’t get anyone involved in the middle of your affairs.  This only leads to more trouble later on.

19. Don’t force friends to choose sides–if people  are friends with both the husband and wife, this is difficult on them as well.  Do not put them in the middle or force them to choose. divorce 2

20. Friends will be weeded out during this time.  True friends will reveal themselves.

21. Forgiveness is essential for my health.   Forgiveness isn’t easy and takes time, but it is better for me all the way around than being angry.

22. Remember Proverbs 15:1: “A gentle answer turns away anger, but a harsh word stirs up wrath.”

What lessons have you learned from going through a divorce?

Creativity Thursday: 9 Ways to Survive as a Starving Artists





Some people may enjoy being a starving artists, but most people don’t.

Talent and a dream is a great motivator, but there are times when it’s not enough.  Even some of the great artists of our day struggled for years before being discovered or reaching the pinnacle of their success.

In the meantime, the rent must be paid and food must be put on the table.

So what are some ways to provide for oneself while reaching that dream?

  1. Ask yourself is this a legitimate dream that can be reached? Are you being realistic?
  2. Do you have the drive and determination to reach the dream through all of the negativity or criticism?Starving Artists
  3. Find a job that is flexible with your dreams
  4. Do you need additional training, education or mentoring?
  5. How can you continue to polish your skills and talent?
  6. How can you use your talent to help others in your area?  Can you play for a nursing home or church?  Teach art at a local school?  Direct community theatre?  Write for your church?
  7. Find a group of other starving artists—you’ll be amazed at what you can learn from one another, provide a critique and offer encouragement to one another.
  8. Do you have other skills and talents to lean on?  How can you use these to gain experience and bring in extra income?
  9. Step out of the box—find innovative ways that are out of the box and out of your comfort zone to let others notice your gift and talent.

What other ways have you moved from starving artists to professional artists?