Anything is Possible!

With Faith, Hope and Perseverance


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A Man Who Can Listen AND be Manly

SOCS

Today’s Steam of Consciousness prompt, brought to us by Linda G. Hill, is “man.”

Aside from the fact that I have trouble with using the word, “man,” to mean all humans, just as a matter of principle, I still imagined myself with a man as a partner. I love the company of women, because it’s usually easy for women to understand each other, as long as we are mature enough to avoid the petty drama of adolescence that some people never grow out of. But when I imagined my dog-loving soulmate, I imagined a man. It’s too bad that I still imagine a man sometimes when I think of God, and I wonder if I’ve been brainwashed, or a better word would be influenced, to imagine God as male based on the language in the Bible and mainstream Christianity. But I really didn’t mean to go there. It’s the Stream of Consciousness that led me there. Let me just swim back up river and pick up another part of the stream, because I wanted to tell you about a song I made up when I was looking for, hoping for, my soulmate. I didn’t make up the tune, and I bet you can recognize the tune by the words.

But first, some background: As you may know, I’ve always been a big Star Trek fan with Mr. Spock being my first crush. Later in life, when single again, I developed a crush on Chakotay, the first officer on Voyager.

Anyway, here’s a stanza of the song I made up:

Oh Lord, won’t ya find me, a man who can listen.

Someone like Chakotay, who’s not been to prison.

I’ve tried on my own Lord, and I have been missin’

Oh Lord, won’t ya find me, a man who can listen.

Chakotay was a man who could listen to a woman, because Janeway was the captain. But he could also give orders and be, well, manly. He didn’t give orders to Janeway though, he was protective of her and a good first officer.

It turns out that the Lord did bring me a man who could listen and be manly too. And protective in a non-dominant way. That’s what a real man is anyway, right?

For a chance to win a free, signed copy of When God Says Wait, sign up for my monthly newsletter before March 21st by clicking the box on the side bar on the right, or just click here: http://eepurl.com/ch52KT

Here are the Rules for Stream of Consciousness Saturday:

1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing, (typos can be fixed) and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.

2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.

3. There will be a prompt every week. I will post the prompt here on my blog on Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The’,” or simply a single word to get your started.

4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours.  Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top. NOTE: Pingbacks only work from WordPress sites. If you’re self-hosted or are participating from another host, such as Blogger, please leave a link to your post in the comments below.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read everyone’s! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later, or go to the previous week, by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find right below the “Like” button on my post.

6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!

7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.

8. Have fun!


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“Wait Is a Four Letter Word.”

When God says, “Wait,” we can control only two things: how we wait and who we become along the way.  __Elizabeth Laing Thompson

When God Says Wait

Enter for a chance to win a free copy by signing up for my monthly newsletter to the right >>>

It’s always something. If it’s not waiting for your soulmate, it’s waiting for your kids to become independent, or waiting to retire, or waiting for your manuscript to be ready for publication.

I’ve just started reading the book, When God Says Wait, by Elizabeth Thompson. It’s easy to read with well-fictionalized biblical stories, personal stories from the author, and simple exercises at the end of each chapter. I sure could’ve used this book 15 years ago when I was wondering if I’d ever fall in love again, if I’d ever find a partner who’d be a good fit. Still, the messages about “navigating life’s detours and delays” clearly relate to my life now.

Finishing the manuscript for Trust the Timing (see my Work in Progress page) has taken a lot longer than I ever imagined, though I’m getting closer every day. Fortunately, waiting to publish and not rushing have allowed me to work through questions about my own history and about how much of other people’s history to include.

This has been a struggle. Early in the writing process, I was encouraged to dig deeper and to show more scenes, which is fine if you’re writing fiction, and okay when it comes to my own baggage, but not so comfortable when it comes to other people’s baggage, or what I call OPB. Even with name changes and changes in identifying characteristics, there has been an uneasiness about exposing some OPB. Earlier drafts have more OPB, and I’ve deleted and softened quite a bit of that. Yet, there are some pieces of OPB that are important to the story. This is one of the big challenges of writing a memoir.

I’ve been praying hard for guidance every time open the manuscript document. It’s helped to ask this  question:

What does God want me to write?

Things often become clear when I ask that question, or some version of it, and then listen to my gut. God often talks to me through my gut. Sometimes God whispers in my ear. But I have to be quiet and open to get the message.

Waiting gives God time to work things out in us and others. Waiting gives us time to become who we are meant to be, to become ready for our heart’s desire. After all, that’s what my book is about. It seems to be my life-long lesson. And I’m learning, slowly but surely.

For a chance to win a free, signed copy of When God Says Wait, sign up for my monthly newsletter before March 21st by clicking the box on the side bar to the right, or just click here: http://eepurl.com/ch52KT

What are you waiting for?  What helps you wait?


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Love Songs with a Twist

agape-candle

When I was single, one of the things that helped me tolerate and even embrace love songs that came on the radio  was to sing them to God. I know it sounds corny, but it helped. One day, on a solo road trip, that old song came on the radio: “Some Kinda Wonderful.” I was about to change the station, when I got an idea. I substituted the name of Jesus for “my baby.” Later in the song, I sang about my sweet loving savior.
And I’m telling you, it worked. Singing love songs to or about Jesus helped ease my loneliness.

Just try it. When a love song comes on, but you don’t have a romantic interest, or if you have one who’s not good for you, substitute the higher power or ideal love of your choice. Think of someone who’s always got your back.

 

Can I get a witness?

I realized I could do this with any love song. I even sang love songs to my dog who was always there for me. Cause you know what dog spelled backwards is. Dogs are like mirrors reflecting unconditional love. Natalie, at Sacred Touches, agrees.

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As I write in Trust the Timing:

“The dogs provided more comfort and less stress than the men I dated after the divorce “

 

 

 

You can sing love songs to any body you want to. Because love is valuable and wonderful . It doesn’t have to be romantic love, though romantic love is pretty darn special. I’m talking about caring for someone else so much that their happiness is just as important as your own. (Love your neighbor as yourself, not more than yourself.)

Whether it’s brotherly love, sisterly love, parental love, platonic love, romantic love, self love, dog love or AGAPE God love, love is good.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Love,

JoAnne/JoAnna

 


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A Gift You Can’t Buy in the Store, Part 1

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Tuesday was my last full day at the job I worked for 30 years. In January, I’ll go back for a few hours to wrap up some paperwork and get the rest of my stuff, and there will be a “retirement” party. But these things will be on my terms and at my convenience.

My husband told me he was proud of me for retiring on my terms. But it was because of him that I was able to do it that way, cutting my hours back gradually, building my courage for the leap of faith, trusting that I would be taken care of. My husband, not wanting to contribute to the commercialization of Christmas, doesn’t like to buy presents from a store, but he loves to make things from wood like candle holders and Christmas ornaments like the balloon above. I tend to agree with him. He’s giving me the best gift of all the Christmas – the gift of retirement.

It was hard to say goodbye to my clients. But it was the right decision for me. Now, I get giggly inside, like a kid at Christmas, as I realize I don’t have to go back to the bureaucracy, to the demands to do more in less time – or bringing work home,  or to the witnessing of the wreckage of addiction.

I am forever grateful to have witnessed the triumphs over addiction and for the privilege to be able to help a little. I’m thankful for all that I’ve learned. But I believe I’ve paid my dues. Now, it’s my turn to follow my heart back to its creative home. I’ll probably do a stress management group somewhere, maybe a group with a creative twist! But it will be on my terms.

I will remember all those late nights I drove home exhausted, my hands aching from the keyboard, wondering if I would ever get caught up on the paperwork, wondering if I  could make it another 10 years until social security and medicare kicked in, wondering if those benefits would even be there for me in 10 years.

I will remember praying to God for deliverance, telling myself, God has a plan.

Little did I know how marvelous that plan would be. God was watching me, loving me, encouraging me, and doing the same for my soulmate 700 miles away. God waited for the perfect time, when my soulmate and I were ready to journey together. (And in case you didn’t know, I’m writing a book about that.)

Ten years ago, I asked God to take away the desire for a partner, or to send someone who is a good fit.

Today, I thank God for the gift of my husband who is a good fit. And I thank my husband for the gift of freedom to be me. On my terms. And on God’s terms.

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Four Years Ago…

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December 1, 2012

 

I never would have imagined that at the age of 56, after twenty years of marriage and the unexpected divorce that brought me to my knees, after the rebound from hell followed by the rebound from purgatory, and after five years of celibacy when I almost gave up on romance, that I would end up marrying the love of my life.

God had a plan all along. We just had to be ready. Not perfect, just ready to work on our stuff together.

Never give up.

You never know

what wonderful surprises

are waiting right around the corner!

 


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Gratitude Makes Sense of our Past

“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.”

Melody Beattie

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 Twenty years of Holy Matrimony

Tossed out like old shoes.

What happened to the promise?

To the the dream?

To the love?

Change ran them off

Down divergent paths.

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Years

of

Confusion

and

Loneliness

Finally passed as

 Acceptance

Seeped into the empty space

 Making room for new possibilities.

 I found my self again.

And loved me for my soul.

And  when the time was right,

Everything made sense.

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Now I’m thankful

that he made that space

and found a better fit.

I’m thankful for the time to heal

and learning to let go.

I’m thankful for the lessons learned

on long and winding roads.

I’m  thankful for convergent paths

That brought my true love home.

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© 2016 JoAnne Silvia. All words and photos on this post are the property of JoAnne Silvia.

Happy Thanksgiving to all my friends and followers for whom I am very thankful! 


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What Ghosts Are You Bringing into Your Relationship?

Sharing this post from my friend, Andrea, cause she is courageous, hard working and keeps it real.

Dating with Jesus

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Since today is Halloween, this seemed an appropriate post…

Another way to put this is, what sins are you making your current partner pay for that aren’t his or hers? And how are they hurting your relationship?

You?

Him or her?

All of us, no matter who we are, bring some baggage into a relationship. None of us on this side of heaven are perfect. Still, some of us may bring a little or a lot more than others, and it can hurt or hinder ourselves and the other person, leading the relationship to become unhealthy, sour, or even end.

What ghosts of our past are lingering in our closets, causing unhealthy fright and worry?

Shortly after my sweet boyfriend and I began dating, the crazy began to come out. He doesn’t know “all” the crazy because I tried to go to God, my counselor, and my girlfriends with the…

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