Iridescent Grace

I have been away from my blog for a number of months working with a team launching a new book. We are excited to get it done.

This book, a memoir written under the pen name of Carly Richaven, reveals the cruelty of mental illness, the resilience of a child, and the amazing grace of a loving God.

Most who have read it say Carly’s book is extreme. The abuse is intense, but the love of God and His grace throughout is also intense.  Get ready for a roller coaster ride that you will want to stay on until the peace-filled end.

The abusive Mom had multiple personalities. The three her children were most familiar with were the Quiet Mom, the Party Mom, and the Evil Mom.  They knew which one she was at the time by her eye color. When her eyes changed from blue to silver, they knew things were about to get bad.

How are those children sane? Find out in Carly’s book. You can find it at iridescentgrace.com or amazon.com. Barnes & Noble also carries it.

Carly also has a blog on WordPress. carlyrichaven.com.

If you love true stories of God’s grace and love, don’t miss this one.

The trailer is coming soon. I will post it when it is sent to me. Can’t wait.

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Because He Loves Us

Good morning! It’s been a while since I posted, but I have not been a slacker, rest assured. I’ve been busy working with a team getting ready to launch a new book. It is called Iridescent Grace and the author’s name is Carly Richaven. More about that as soon as the publisher gives us a launch date.

I recently saw a this statement on Facebook to which I felt compelled to respond. There is an idea in our culture today that suggests that because Jesus loves us there are no consequences for our words or actions. That is simply not true.

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I replied in the comments of the posting with this statement, “And as I do, you have to accept the consequences of your choices.”After much thought, I feel I need to respond further to the ideas promoted in the posting. I speak to the person who wrote it and anyone who believes that it’s okay to do these things because Jesus will still love you.

First of all, let’s get to the core of the statement : Jesus loves you as much as He loves me. I am in total agreement with that. He loves you so much that He would have suffered and died that horrible death if you had been the only human on the planet. He loves me that much, too.

Now, let’s look at the other concepts in the statement:

Tattoos. I don’t have any, but that just makes us different, not me better or worse than you. With tattoos, you can probably reach a certain group of people with the gospel that would never listen to me. Open up the Word to them. Show them Jesus and eternal life.

Road rage. I’m sure everyone who drives can relate to that. If not controlled however, bad things can happen. Google “road rage” and read some of the sickening stories. Be angry, and sin not. Ephesians 4:26

Sex before marriage. God ordained sexual activity within certain guidelines. After marriage, sexual activity is beautiful and blessed. Not before. Hebrews 13:4

Swear like a sailor = Cursing. Clean water and dirty water from the same fountain? This ought not to be. James 3:10-11

You love Jesus? Those who love Him keep His commandments. John 14:15, 21

Again, does He love you? Emphatically, yes! He certainly does and because of that wants you to make good choices. He weeps when you don’t, because He knows there are consequences for the choices you make. Choose wisely, so He can rejoice with you.

Yes, He loves you as much as He does me, but is He pleased with your words and actions? I ask myself that every day.

Choices matter. You and I have the same privilege: the ability to choose. I try my best to choose those things that please Him because He is showing me how to really live, not just survive this tenure on Earth.

Do I get it right every time? Of course not. But I repent and aim for better choices as life goes on.

I hope you will do the same. And by the way, I love you, too. We are equal at the foot of the cross.

Gone Home

45 years ago my boyfriend stopped by my house after work and I wasn’t home. He left this note. I was sad that I had missed an evening of riding in the woods with him, and that he had already gone home. I knew I would see him again though.

I was sixteen and he was twenty. We got married just four months after this picture was taken and were together until his exit to Heaven on November 7, 2014.

I found this note while going through some keepsakes after Frank’s passing, and still feel the same as I did the first time I read it. I love you, too, Frank!

Gone Home

God Empowers and Gives Peace

I recently made a nPeaceew friend who shared her story with me. Her story is an ongoing one because she deals with difficulty every day. As she shared the details of her struggles, she also shared evidence of the strength she draws from our Lord to carry on. She has an undeniable peace about her.

This young woman’s mother, a strong woman herself, has a disease that may inevitably cause her demise, but can never take her life. Her life is in Christ, so if the disease claims her body, she will simply step over the threshold into perfect life with Him. Meanwhile, my friend helps to care for her mom and draws strength from God both emotionally and physically to power through the difficult days. Each day she has an early morning devotion that lifts her faith and sets the tone for that day. She strives to keep her mom, her family, and herself in good spirits despite the disease.

That is not her only struggle, however. My new friend spoke of the issues she encountered as she and her husband grew their family. They experienced a difficult pregnancy that ended in the stillbirth of a son at twenty-seven weeks. After the doctors informed the young couple of the son’s physical abnormalities and the handicapped life he would have faced, they knew that God had spared their precious son this tumultuous life and were at peace. They are certain they will see him again in Heaven. Their faith in God was tested, but He constantly gave them reminders of His love and care through the months that followed. And their faith is even stronger than before.

She also spoke of her two other precious children, a boy and a girl. Again, the details of each of their births were not in line with the normal course of conception, growth, labor, and delivery. Let’s just say they are each a beautiful gift from God, made more precious by the difficulty this mother experienced.

Her little girl was born with an unusual condition, which causes her skin to tear easily and her joints to quite often dislocate. My friend told of the first-aid kit she keeps in her car to repair skin tears, and of the times she has to put her daughter’s joints back into place. She said she refuses to make her little girl miss out on life because of this anomaly in her body. Other folks get a little squeamish as my friend takes care of an ugly skin tear or pops her daughter’s arm back into place at the shoulder. Her friends say they just couldn’t do that. I love the statement she made about God giving her this particular little girl. She said, “God gave her to me, because He knew I could handle it. I would be the right Mama for her.”  Oh, what strength! And what confidence this woman has in her Lord and Savior!

We women are nurturers and deal with things emotionally. That is simply how God made us. That said, I am amazed at how He strengthens and uses our emotions and character traits – love, compassion, fortitude, perseverance – to help us be the women we need to be.

After conversing with my new friend, I felt empowered, believing that God is able to strengthen us no matter what we face each day. My difficulties are certainly different from hers, but the same God who empowers her to wake up each morning and face the day with joy and determination, can and does do the same for me.

He can and will do it for you, too.

You Find Change When You Move

ChangeI’ve been away from my blog writing for a couple of months and I hope you will forgive the absence as I have good reason. I’ve been moving to a new area closer to my children. It took just about the entire two months to plan, prepare, and move. I’m now done. I found some change in the process.

Did you know a man can collect a ton of stuff in forty-three years? Yes, I know a ton is two thousand pounds. And I went through every ounce of it.

You may not believe this, but I found a leather bag full of change in his closet. Several hundred dollars worth. If you are going to hoard something …  I found other things, too, in the house and elsewhere. Tools and other guy stuff. Some items I didn’t even know what they were used for. Some I did. What was I to do with fifteen hammers?

I had a yard sale. Mostly my husband’s tools and guy stuff. Filled up his sixteen-foot utility trailer and sold stuff for two days. That was certainly an experience. For those who came from another county and did not know my husband or of his entry into Heaven, it was a little confusing. They couldn’t figure out what his career choice was. There was welding equipment, lawn care equipment, pipe-fitting tools, home repair tools, hunting and fishing equipment (the big stuff for hunting in the mountains or fishing in Alaska. My husband didn’t play). I finally told them he was just an all-round guy. They couldn’t understand why a man would allow his tools to be sold and asked if he was on a trip or was I just mad at him. I said, “Something like that.” Then I told them where he’d gone and they apologized. No need. It was a trip. Plan on making it myself when the Lord calls. They bought his stuff anyway. It’s good stuff.

I still have his gemstone cutting and faceting equipment if anyone is interested.

Then there was my ton of stuff. I found clothes I forgot I had. And didn’t need. Some things only worn once. I asked myself, “Why did you buy all that?” My answer, “I liked it in the store.” (Don’t shake your head. You do it , too. I’ve been shopping with some of you!)

I have downsized. That means I got rid of a lot of stuff I don’t need, so that the smaller house I now live in has room to walk around in.(Don’t look in the garage.) Everybody needs to move once or twice in their life. Very refreshing. Makes you go through your belongings and decide what’s meaningful and what is not.

I kept the important stuff. The things he gave me or I gave him. The furniture we bought and used together. The pictures and the videos. Anything with a precious memory attached.

My life has changed dramatically in the last ten months. My husband’s sudden departure brought on a river of change for me. I retired from public school teaching and moved to a new area. It’s been a bit of a challenge to get everything done and wrap my head around all of the change, but by God’s grace I am moving forward.

I still love him very much. That will never change.