Born On Mum’s Birthday – Honouring My Mother

On my mother’s birthday I honoured her with this speech before blowing a candle and cutting the cake together. Mum was moved to tears.

Dear Mum

It’s my honour to share a birthday with you. What a special day!

Mum,  the fearless lioness who always protected us.

With your example I learned to fearlessly protect my own.

You loved us without conditions and so we also learned to love without conditions and without fear.

Mum – I worked a little while with you and saw how you worked in the packing factory.

There, I understood the sacrifice you had made and learned to appreciate what you did for us.

Mum– Your efforts were selfless. You kept your 3 daughters clean, combed, dressed and well fed. You worked hard and arrived home shattered every night. But you continued working, cooking and cleaning.

I don’t know how you did it!

You are the driving force behind me wanting to be a good person, the best mother I can be and loving wife.

What a blessing to be able to spend another birthday with you.

I love you mum

Happy 76th Birthday.

In Spanish

QUERIDA MAMA

Siempre fue mi orgullo de cumplir junto contigo.

Para mi es un dia muy especial.

Mama, Sos la leona fiera que siempre nos protejia con todo el alma.

Con ese ejemplo aprendi el valor de protejer lo mio – mis hermanas especialmente……..nadie las podia tocar!  Solo yo.

Nos amaste sin condiciones y asi tambien aprendimos a amar sin condiciones y sin miedo.

Mama – Yo tabaje contigo un tiempito y vi como trabajabas en la fabrica de empaquetar.  Ahi, supe el sacrificio tuyo y aprendi a apreciar lo que hicistes por nosotras y mas cuando  nacio mi hija.

Mama – Tubistes a tus 3 hijas limpias, peinadas, vestidas y bien alimentadas.   Laburaste al lado de papa sacrificando por tu familia y llegabas a casa destrozada pero seguias laburando, cocinando y limpiando.  La casa siempre limpia. No se como lo hacias!

Sos el motivo y la fuerza detraz mio que me lleva a ser buena persona, buena madre y una esposa cariniosa.

Que bendicion de poder pasar otro cumple con mi vieja!

Te amo mama 

Feliz cumpleanos.

Vantage Point – How We Look At Life

Our point of view is our point of reference affecting how we see everything.

Most human beings tend to develop around the society we each live in. Our minds are focused on knowing all we can about life, nature and the world around us. We all want to know who we are, where we came from, how we fit in and what purpose we have for living.

Social rules have changed somewhat from my teen years and they continue to change. One of the many talks my father about the changing world he said, “Sandra, what was right will always be right and what was wrong will always be wrong no matter how trends change.” He was saying in the 80’s that what is in right now doesn’t make it right.

Immediately all the lines which I tested and crossed as a young girl were bought to mind. He said, “We are all born with a measure of right and wrong.  There are no blurred lines.” In that he was absolutely right.

Then he went onto say, “That guilty feeling you feel inside, it’s borne of your character. Listen to your inner voice, trust it and if it feels wrong, then it’s wrong for you.” Yet in all his wisdom in this was where he erred.

There have been plenty of times where I’ve done the wrong thing and it felt absolutely right at the time.  Like taking revenge for instance.  It felt right and it felt GOOD! But, deep down inside I knew it was wrong.  We can’t escape the truth no matter how much we try to justify it.

God gives me a better vantage point than any earthly wisdom.  Each boundary is for my own protection and the lines are never blurred. In Him I trust. Just look at the ten commandments.  Do you know anyone who hasn’t broken one of those?  Yet it’s God’s standard for holiness.  It’s humanly impossible to be good all the time. We live in a fallen world that is broken and unholy.

So how can we ever face a holy God when we are so riddled with sin?  Jesus made a way and it’s in God’s grace through Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection that we have forgiveness.

Most of all God is stable in all He does and all He is. He is the same yesterday, today and always. His wisdom is eternal and he is a father to the fatherless.

If you’ve never read the bible or you don’t own one and want to learn about Jesus who is known as ‘The Word’, visit The Bible Gateway

 

 

 

 

 

The Perfect Toy For My Child

KIDS TOYS!

There’s nothing quite as wonderful as watching a little one play with toys because as parents we want our children to learn from them, to grow and love life in general and be happy.

When my daughter was a baby, I had the tendency to buy everything in pink. My little girl had pink bedroom, pink clothes and her toys were just about all pink.  It was no surprise that when she could talk she told me that she didn’t like pink.

So I decided to take her out shopping to see which toys really stood out to her.  To my surprise she liked boys toys. There were cars, trucks and even soldiers.  She liked puzzles, magic tricks and some of the more complicated Lego toys.  Her world was much larger than mine and I was learning from her.  I allowed her to explore with different types of educational toys and today my child is no longer little and as a teenager she’s grown up to become quite a bright young lady.

Kids know what they want.  So my suggestion is, show them, let them have some input and you’ll be amazed at their bright little personalities!

Your child’s perfect toy is a safe one for their age group that they’ll play with to keep themselves amused, enjoy and grow from.

By Sandra Ciminelli

Originally posted on: www.cleverideas.com.au 

 

The Coward With A Hardened Heart

I’d met my childhood sweetheart at the age of 15 and we were married five months after my 18th birthday.  At the age of 32 I divorced a violent and narcissistic drug addicted schizophrenic man who in his twisted way believed that he loved me. He probably did but in my mind it was shallow.  At first I stuck around hoping for change and later on it was fear that kept me by his side for believing in his threats.

Since the divorce I’ve been dealing with stuff that surfaces slowly. You see, I’ve been a runner avoiding emotional pain and have done so for many years burying things deep within not to feel hoping it would go away. As a child I thought that If I didn’t feel it that it wouldn’t affect me. I wouldn’t let it. I thought I was tough to be able to swallow my pride, put things away and not face them again. In reality I was a frightened kid with a hardened heart who accumulated one trauma after another.

Refusing To Feel is Refusing To Heal

Funny thing about burying these very real feelings, they don’t die. They resurrect when you least expect them. Undealt with pain sinks into the chambers of our most inner being, seeping out poison slowly to remind us that these badly filed emotions need to be dealt with. The longer we leave them, the more thought processes and actions will be impacted affecting our character.  That’s how I became a very angry young person.

No wonder I ended up with depression. Recently (after 20 years) I uncovered exactly why I left my ex-husband.  When visions of the past rose to the surface playing as if on the TV, they seemed so remote to me I had to re-analyse them before I could recognise the past and own it.

Our hurts will resurface giving  us the opportunity to file them under, ‘forgiven’ not under ‘forgotten’ because that’s been proven not to work.  I’m living proof! We can’t completely forget trauma and past hurts.

The key to my healing was forgiveness.   It’s not within our nature to forgive such things. It’s a supernatural thing.  God gives us the ability to make that choice.  Our hearts catch up with our choices.

The bible says, “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?”

Will you ask God to give you a forgiving heart?   Choose today to forgive and release yourself!

Today I make the choice to forgive………………………… but I don’t know how. Jesus come into my heart and give me the ability to forgive…………………………… for…………………….    Forgive me for my sins as well I ask in Jesus name.  Amen.

Once you’ve done this, it’s filed behind you under, “forgiven”.  Thoughts may resurface but when feelings of anger rise up again remind yourself that you’ve chosen to forgive, thank God for his forgiveness .

If you struggle with thoughts resurfacing, unwanted thoughts and pain too unbearable to face seek the help of a counsellor or talk to your church leaders.  I’m glad I did!

 

Dealing With A Past We’d Rather Forget.

Recurring thoughts happen for a very simple reason.

Most of us have done things in the past or have had things done to us that we’d rather not think about.   These recurring images and thoughts can bring about mixed emotions. Numbing the pain with addictions and substance abuse in order to forget will just make us repeat or ‘groundhog day’ until the next time the brain gives you another nudge jolting your memory.

These thoughts just don’t and won’t simply go away.  They are written deep within the hard drive of your memory as being, “undealt with.”  So they’ll just keep popping up until you file those thoughts in the right spot which is behind you. The only way to do that is to forgive yourself, forgive others and forgive God! Whatever method you’re using other than forgiveness won’t work and the cycle of recurring thoughts will keep going until you forgive.

You might still be angry, but if you don’t let go you will be stuck in a level of emotional immaturity and your character and actions will form around that bitter root.  To get past it simply make a choice to forgive even if you don’t know how to. Let it go. Unforgiveness leads to bitterness and bitterness leads to illness.

NOW FOR A SPIRITUAL TRUTH
The bible talks about the importance of forgiveness which is releasing someone from a debt and choosing to forgive, even if you don’t know how, to forgive them and no longer hold them accountable.

Matthew 6:14 – “For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.”

If you read the passage above you may have picked up on the fact that YOU are attached to that unforgiveness.  By forgiving others you release yourself!

WIKIPEDIA
Forgiveness
is the intentional and voluntary process by which a victim undergoes a change in feelings and attitude regarding an offense, lets go of negative emotions such as vengefulness, with an increased ability to wish the offender well.

ONLINE
I’ve read that unforgiveness is like swallowing poison hoping the other person will die.

WHAT FORGIVING IS NOT
Forgiving someone doesn’t mean that you have to be friends with or associate with the person you’re forgiving.

Pray the following prayer if you want to forgive but don’t know how.

Lord Jesus,  today I make the choice to put the offense of (name the offense) behind me and to forgive (name the offender/s) that hurt me even if I don’t know how to.  I ask for your forgiveness and love to flow through me and  I ask you to forgive me for the unforgiveness and release me and (names) from effects of the sin and from bitterness and resentment. Cleanse my heart and make me whole. Amen.

Now you’ve prayed,  the decision you made might not match your feelings right now, but they eventually will.  If those thoughts come up again, simply tell yourself that all is forgiven and move on.  Don’t dwell on the past because when you entertain those thoughts they tend to move in and take over.

JUST AS DIRTY AS I AM – Nobody gets in a bath unless they’re dirty!

God welcomes everyone. As we learn from him and about him, we can’t help but fall in love.

It was 1996, I’d recently gone through a divorce with a violent, drug addicted and schizophrenic man who had me living in fear for almost 17 years. Wanting to get closer to God in the cold Canberra winter of 1998, my sister took me to her little Pentecostal church held at a local school hall, as they didn’t yet have their own building. Looking around at people with seemingly perfect lives noticing they were nicely groomed wearing dressy but casual clothing, their kids were happy and all I saw was one big happy family. Panicked within (anxiety), in my mind there was no way I’d ever fit into this scene.  Within me there was a storm.  At the time I was angry, sad, unhappy, lonely and just sick of life.

Feeling uneasy about being there I confided about those feelings to my my younger sister who is a strong Christian.   She said to me, “Sandra, don’t think that these people here have got it all made, they’re just as dirty and dysfunctional as you are.  The only difference is that they admit it and want to change.  They acknowledge that God is the source of all life and that it’s God who cleanses them. You don’t get into a bath unless you’re dirty!”

Then she said something else, “God accepts you as you are so let him in and he does the changing from within.”   I thought, “what? Wait a minute he accepts me then he changes me?  Isn’t that a contradiction?”   Reading my bible, I couldn’t help but fall in love with Jesus and his words.

I read somewhere that Jesus died for us while we were still sinners. It’s not the sin God loves, its us. He wants our hearts and Jesus also came so that we may be reconciled to God, have life and have it abundantly.  So the change in me was that I was going to befriend God and learn the true meaning of life and love it?  That was exactly what happened. The changes were gradual but sure.

It’s June 2017, I’m still in the bath, I’m not perfect and I’m slowly transforming into what God wants for me and I have inner peace in my life.  We hurt and deal with our hurts in our own dysfunctional way that can make us really bitter, or we can be free from fears and hurts while keeping our peace.  Its Jesus who wants to heal our hearts with his perfect love that casts out all fear.  

If you’re worried about sin, God forgives us, no matter what we have done.  What the bible calls sin, is sin, everyone in the world falls short because God is holy.  Nobody is perfect and we can’t point the finger in judgement of anyone else.  “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only son for who-so-ever believes in him shall have eternal life” John 3:16  OK it states who-so-ever.  It doesn’t matter who you are or what you’ve done? That’s powerful.

If you believe that then pray this short prayer asking Jesus into your heart.

Jesus, I know you died for me and take me as I am.  I’m not perfect and will never be that in this world.  Thank you that you took my sins upon your body and they were crucified with you on the cross. I ask your forgiveness and for you to come into my heart and grant me your peace. Let me grow in your wisdom and in truth. Fill me with the Holy Spirit that I may have your helper so I can follow you. Amen

What can you do now?

If you prayed that prayer, find a local Christian church, be baptised, read your bible and pray regularly. Walk close to God and remember that nothing can separate you from His love. If you have done all that and are filled with Holy Spirit you have been born again as the bible requires you to do so you can enter heaven. Live in relationship with Jesus offering constant prayers for those you love and for your enemies.

Christian bloggers are invited to share your posts on my Facebook group at Christian Blog Space

How Is Vulnerability Essential for Personal Growth?

By avoiding vulnerability we remain stunted and emotionally immature in areas where we refuse to feel.

Vulnerability is a difficult thing to master. Yet, it is in vulnerability that we cultivate courage within ourselves.  I personally don’t like being vulnerable. There’s a creepy sense of transparency that makes me really uncomfortable. The shame of not being good enough or the dread of being judged by others is why I have avoided public speaking for years!  Regrettably, It’s a real fear I’ve held onto instead of working through it.

Recently I’ve learned that the more that I allow myself to become vulnerable, the more growth I experience. Those people who practice vulnerability are generally seen amongst the most courageous, happy and intelligent people in society. How many public speakers do you know that don’t get nervous before making a speech? Not too many, right? Yet to onlookers they may look typically calm and collected.

It’s natural for us to protect ourselves from pain as we’re mostly inclined to shield ourselves from feeling anything negative.  By avoiding situations that require a certain level of vulnerability we remain stunted and emotionally immature in those areas where we refuse to feel.

Vulnerability is essential for our personal, emotional and spiritual growth. By stepping out of our comfort zones we’re allowing ourselves to experience and grow.  Speaking from experience, some of us tend to avoid it like the plague!

Brené Brown, Vulnerability Researcher summed it up perfectly when she said, “We numb vulnerability.”

MY EXPERIENCE

Allowing myself to become vulnerable I got on a plane after 40 years of avoiding flying due to a bad landing experience during a storm in Tahiti when travelling as a young child. So, not long ago I booked a week long holiday catching a plane to Queensland with my husband and daughter.  Since then I’ve been flying with my family and with work. It’s been fantastic and liberating.  But, I still cringe at the landing!

So my motto now is, “Do it afraid!”

2 Timothy 1:7 “For God has not given us a spirit of fear or timidity, but one of power, love and self-control.”

Watch and listen to Brené Brown’s TED Talk, ‘The Power Of Vulnerability.’

Sandra Ciminelli
PEN WITH A VIEW