Never Give Up

Today is the anniversary of my mother’s death. I felt to share this again and maybe encourage if but one …

cropped-cropped-049.jpg

Eight years ago, my beautiful mother passed away. Six years ago, my wonderful brother passed away. She was eighty, he was forty-eight. She had Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma, he had Acute Myeloid Leukaemia. Neither knew the Lord when diagnosed. So I say never give up.

So many times during the course of mother’s illness, we would talk about my precious Lord. Her beliefs were scattered though and she loved anything to do with Tibet. Whenever we discussed anything to do with the Bible, she somehow managed to skirt around the topic and the subject was closed. This always happened. She was looking for something and would try anything and listen to anyone about everything. Yes, it’s important to listen to others; but not at the expense of one’s eternal life. Everything seemed like a joke. She would go to church; but was forever questioning, sometimes in the middle of a service (makes me smile now; but quite embarrassing at times).

Her illness stayed in remission for about five years. It returned. In the final couple of weeks, the questions continued. I played beautiful Christian music for her when she could no longer get out of bed. I had the Bible in audio form and jamming the repeat button, played the Psalms for her, just on low; but high enough for her too drink in God’s promises.

My Pastor’s mother visited and the questions, yes they kept coming. Still she was undecided. We showed her a plaque with “My God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus”. Still she questioned. Oh! The questions. The Name of Jesus was highlighted for her in the Scripture verse. No other god, image, idol.

Suddenly the Light began to enter her understanding and I believe it was then, only a few short weeks before she died, that she finally began to stop fighting and accept and be loved by Jesus. He had opened her eyes. She questioned again, but she had changed. God’s love shone through her. She had us throw out a statue on her windowsill. A peace settled on her. On us.

Hospital then the nursing home awaited. Psalm 23 played on and on and on. It was also above her head on a beautifully carved, wooden wall hanging. The Shepherd Psalm filled her very being. She couldn’t escape it.

The day she passed was so sad and yet so peaceful. With her last breaths few and far between, (by now my Father and I believed she had gone), I whispered into her ear that Jesus loved her and so did we. All of a sudden she breathed a great breath. It was such a shock that I jumped back and her bed moved, which was a further shock as I didn’t realize that the brakes weren’t on. Such a beautifully painful death. Yet I witnessed her spirit leave. I sensed it. I sensed her life depart.

Praise God, she is with Him. All of those years causing friction, sadness, questioning, frustrations all accumulated into one glorious ending. Underneath are the Everlasting Arms.

So never give up. There is always hope. In every breath, there is hope.

My brother endured months of horrendous treatment and was in ICU for many weeks with only about eight months from diagnosis to final hour. He didn’t believe in God either and conversations between us became somewhat heated at times. Sadness prevailed.

In hospital I would try and once again bring Jesus into the discussions. Not interested. I would pray silently by his bedside when we were the only ones in his room.

Then came the call. I asked his wife to place the phone to his ear. She said he wouldn’t hear me. I spoke lovingly to him of the Lord and prayed desperately for him. All I could hear was laboured breathing. Finishing just as she came back onto the line, I praise God that I was able to witness to him, one last time.

He died. I left him with God. I just didn’t know.

But I never gave up. Nothing is impossible with God.

My Blogging Vacation

A Blogging Vacation

Hi Everyone,
Just a short post to let you know that it will be rather quiet around poetry cottage for a while … struggling with health issues and what time I do spend on the computer … I am refiling and unearthing years of my writing, enabling me to publish my second book … this time, a softcover.

God bless you all my sweet friends … may the Lord continue to bless, heal, deliver and save … and He will.

I will still check the reader from time to time, as I know, like the flowers need the rain, love will always need its companionship and encouragement xxx

Illness Harboured Within

I wish to give God all the glory for all of my inspired writing – the poems, the songs, my e-book ‘Fragrance from the Spring’ … I could never have done it on my own … the writing simply wouldn’t exist without Him.

Illness Harboured WithinLiving in a small space, of what my life’s become
Weakness follows weakness, around this heart of mine
Each step, it feels uncertain
Unsteady and unsure
Tiredness overwhelming
Of this … I can be sure

Believing for His strength
To wash and remain in me
Trying to fathom alertness
Of what’s been left undone
Eyes … they see
But a mist descends upon my view
Pain … it flits so easily
Without a boundary given

The orchestra continues to play
Deep within my head
I don’t remember purchasing tickets
But have been given front row seats
‘Cause I can hear so beautifully
The rhythm of bells and I’ve been given
A momento to take home … Where I can
Repeat all that’s ever been played
Oh! and I forgot to mention, my head … it feels like lead

But I will not forget
No, I will always remember
That the Lord … our Heavenly Father
Is in control and always will be
Yes, He’s given me front row seats
But others, He’s placed on the stage of suffering
And their need is so much greater than mine

Oh! Lord I lift all who are hurting
All who are in pain
All who are suffering … in any way, Father
Unto You
Please flood them with Your healing virtue
Draw those who do not know You, to the well of living water
The well of salvation
Re-affirm Your beautiful presence to those who love You

Every breath is a gift from God
And hope, it lives within each breath

© 2013 Liana Wendy Howarth

Illness Harboured WithinMy beautiful cats, Louie Bear (top) and Meeko … they bring me so much comfort.

When Fear is Silent (A Testimony)

(For quite a long time now I have had ‘a silent fear’ about whether or not I had the same as my dear mother, brother or aunt because of my extreme longstanding tiredness and other symptoms – but praise God I am in the clear, the results came in this morning and even though I know that the Lord has not given me the spirit of fear; but of power, love and a sound mind 2 Timothy 1:7, there was always this ‘doubt’ (being an ex-nurse doesn’t help).  I don’t think I realized until now the intensity of watching a loved one suffer and lose their battle, or rather I did know; but even in all the pain I felt, it was suppressed and the thought that the same journey may lie ahead for me, well without the Lord’s strength, love and grace through His mercy …..

Praying for anyone reading this who has just received devastating results, or is still waiting for results. May you be blessed with love, strength and peace from the Lord’s open hands.)

When Fear is SilentWhen Fear is Silent
Underlying fear is often silent
Comes and goes as it desires
Brings with it all anguish, shed tears
Bounds and lays hold with unseen wires

Wires of worry and wires of doubt
And once again the silence flows
Can this heart harbour so much pain?
A glance, a memory, a tune – only it knows!

Brings the fear undone again
It washes in with tides of thought
Thoughts of do I, don’t I, or do I
Have to live with dreams of nought

For how can dreams survive a battle
Waging with suppressed free joy
When a fear is left unattended
Left to scar and with each breath destroy

But this story has a breakthrough
Dreams will surface and be fulfilled
Fear is now gone and fear not needed
As the truth, the Truth is anew instilled

© 2013 Liana Wendy Howarth

 

Clouds of Invisibility (Battling Chronic Fatigue and Invisible Illness)

storm cloud

I can hear but sounds are muffled ringtones

I can see but sight is blurred

I am awake but I feel so sleepy

But I know I’ll always find clarity in God’s Word

*       *       *       *       *       *       *

I can speak but my thoughts are muddled

I can walk but each step feels unsure

I can breathe but sometimes my heart plays the wrong note

But I know I’ll always find clarity in God’s Word

*       *       *       *       *       *       *

I can smell but fragrance is diluted

I can smile but there’s a loneliness within

I can shed tears even when I’m not sad

But I know I’ll always find clarity in God’s Word

*       *       *       *       *       *       *

I can understand but it’s hard to retain

I can sleep but I awaken still tired

I can venture out but everything has to be well planned

But I know I’ll always find clarity in God’s Word

*       *       *       *       *       *       *

I can feel but my heart likes to quickly close

I have friends but I find it hard to socialize

Fogginess in my head, it leads to overload

But I praise God for the clarity of His Word

*       *       *

© 2013 Liana Wendy Howarth

*       *       *

Prayers lifted for all trying to cope with illness which has affected their precious senses and ability to lead a ‘normal’ life.

Illness that sometimes others don’t see, don’t comprehend … don’t believe in your story.  God knows and believes.  He loves you dearly.

No matter what happens in your life … there will always be one constant.  He never changes and He will always answer prayer from a humble heart.

children in the rain

images courtesy of http://www.mycutegraphics.com

Suffering; but Renewed

21st Jan, 2013 010

Ever stop to think that the reason we are placed in what we think are difficult situations, is that we are spared what is happening should we have stayed in the heat of a matter?

Like a pot plant that is taken out of the intense noonday heat and placed lovingly in the shade.

To be renewed and refreshed in the coolness and stillness, out of the draining heat.

We too, go through trials lovingly allowed in order to be renewed and refreshed.

Tears last longer and are powerful in a trial.

Healing.

Sometimes what becomes of us, the forced rest, a change in direction – any change in us in the heat of the furnace during our sufferings, is actually the remedy for a need that maybe we didn’t even know existed.

*******       *******       *******
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.’

Romans 8:28 KJV

I Wait and Wait … and Wait

Waiting for an Answer

I wait.

For an answer.

To prayer.

The path before me divides.

Which path to take?

I have lifted the need in prayer.

I could go forward.

But I will sit.

And wait.

And trust.

A door will be opened.

In His time.

In His time only.

Just trust.

So I wait.

But Lord ….

I need the answer now.

I don’t have the time to wait.

Something has to be done now!

But still I sit.

And wait.

And wait.

Then one day  ….

A different solution arrives.

It’s easier.

It answers my problem.

And I didn’t have to do a thing.

Just trust.

And wait.

And not take the problem out of His hands.

It’s done!

All I did was wait.

And watch.

And believe.

And wait.

An answer always comes.

And its always the best for me.

Because He loves me.

And I love Him.

********

From “Fragrance from the Spring”

WAITING

“Wait on the Lord

Again I say wait.

In Christ, we find patience

To wait on the Lord

 

Onward Christian soldier

Nearer to Him we be

 

Tell the brokenhearted

He died for you and me

Ever faithful, everlasting

 

Lord, in Your radiance we live

On Your promises we believe

Render to each a measure of faith

Dearly beloved, a treasure to Thee”

 

Shades of Sadness

16th Jan, 2013 091

Pain, it can hide.

Or it can surface.

It can open the way for cleansing tears.

Sadness.

It can leave you feeling so empty.

So alone.

Nowhere to turn.

There are many shades of sadness.

Your life can be tinged with it.

It can be released and cloud your joy.

It can affect others.

It can be totally all-consuming.

And the heavier the burden.

The closer you are to letting go.

This is when the tears will fall.

Beautiful tears, healing time and sorrow.

And eventually, joy will rise with the morrow.

_________________________________

‘And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.’

Revelation 21:4 KJV

A Golden Heart

18th Jan, 2013 058

There is the potential for a heart of gold in each of us.

It’s deep within some ….. waiting ….. waiting ….. as it waits for renewal.

In others it’s full of visible beauty.

And as each act of kindness is given, love is scattered.

Love is shared.

Gold needs a furnace to be made perfect.

In order to be compassionate, one has usually suffered.

Suffered the same or similar to the one to whom compassion is given.

Only someone going through this trial can truly comprehend where help is needed.

Be it understanding.

Wisdom.

A meal.

A smile.

A home.

A bed.

Food.

Water.

A hug.

Love.

Trustworthy advice.

Trust.

Loyalty.

Friendship.

Non-judgmental support.

To be silent.  To just be there.

*******

From “Fragrance from the Spring”

And Just Because

“And just because I have your friendship

And just because I know you care

I pray the Lord, dear friends to send you

Who’ll listen, love and sweetly share

***

And just because you’re always there

And just because your smile’s for Him

I pray the Lord, new strength to send you

Because I know you’re feeling weak, eyes dim

***

And just because of your love for others

And just because of concern for all things right

I pray the Lord, comfort throughout the hours

When you’re needing fresh ‘songs in the night’

***

And just because I know you need help

And just because I know you’re struggling

I pray the Lord, our dear precious Lord

To send a bouquet of His most fragrant Scriptures

A present from our Almighty King”

***

Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.’

2 Corinthians 1:4 KJV