Dear Readers,

In the event I haven’t updated you here, most of my new posts will be on my other Christian Health Coach blog, so please click on the link to keep up to date or subscribe to those posts, which will also be on my Facebook page

Since I am on a personal quest for improved emotional, mental and brain health, a lot of my blog posts in the next while will be on these subjects and I welcome your dialogue, discussion and comments, of course.

For the starter of this series, please click HERE




Many of us prior to Thanksgiving, embarked on a daily practice of gratitude. So now that the Thanksgiving holiday is over, will it be a habit we continue to practice? If not, then why not? And if so, then why?

Practicing and being conscientious of the abundance and blessings in one’s life actually contributes to our mental, emotional, spiritual and physical well-being, as we are multi-dimensional and our being is interconnected. When we conscientiously care for our being, ourselves, it is called ‘self-care’. 

Being Christian, we acknowledge our Biblical knowledge of how we are to ‘die to ourselves‘ in multitudinous ways, however if we do not live intentionally whether in service to others and to the Lord and with our own schedule and wellbeing, and in deliberate self-care practices, we may find ourselves in a state of overwhelm, frustration, stress and dis-ease

Surrendering ourselves to the Lordship of Christ in all areas of our lives is what brings peace, balance and contentment. Many of us discovered in our practice of gratitude, that peace, joy, more evidence of the fruit of the spirit and a sense of God orchestrating and leading more of our activities and appointments, were by-products. And these bring more ‘ease’ into our daily lives, diminishing the degree of dis-ease or lack of wellness. 


Have you thought about the practice of gratitude being a ‘self-care’ habit? For this Health Coach, it has been and I have no intention of stopping now. I find myself almost lifted to new  spiritual growth and awareness of God’s Presence with me and in my life when I am practicing gratitude. I do it when walking the dog and find myself alone in a large park area so I can speak it out loud. I practice it through singing and worship and sometimes dancing when alone at home. I practice it verbally when reading the Word and what delights me is that I am discovering how often I do it silently when driving or going about daily errands. A huge benefit as well is how quickly I realize when I am NOT speaking with gratitude but with grumbling or complaints. I so appreciate the Holy Spirit’s quick prompting so that I can break agreement with the complaints, repent and again break forth with thanks.


So as everyday self-care can include drinking more pure liquids such as water, eating a rainbow of colored fruits and vegetables,  exercising a minimum of 30 minutes per day, spending daily time outdoors, let’s intentionally add the practice of gratitude and enhance the quality and quantity of the life which God lends to us to serve him and others. 

What changes have come about for you from your daily practice of gratitude? Please share.

Recommended Links: 

21 days of gratitude

56 Bible verses about gratitude

The attitude of gratitude: A Bible Study suggestion

Gratitude Songs

Grateful even when it hurts

How to cultivate gratitude this holiday season

Lifestyle Wellness Coaching




For many years, I’ve been familiar with the word, “soaking”, in regards to spending time with the Lord, perceiving His presence and simply basking in it and worshiping. At times I have an intense craving for being in His Presence and I so enjoy closing my door, turning on the music and just basking; with time being of no importance at all. It’s the place where ‘As I wait upon the Lord, I will rise up with wings like eagles, so I can run and not grow weary, where I can start walking and not faint”  Isaiah 40:31

I want to crave Him like that all the time. I DO want to desire Him more than anything else.

My human nature, my flesh, my ‘old man’, so-to-speak, often convinces me with so many excuses as to why I cannot schedule that segment of time into my schedule. I can justify almost anything. And then I live with the consequences of neglecting the Life Giver and the Bread of Life, My Comforter and Counselor and the Giver of Perfect Peace.

I upbraid myself when after-the-fact, I realize that I’ve sacrificed peace and soul-rest for chaos, stress and unrest. But our God is a Redeeming God and I simply need to stop, turn around, repent and run into His Presence again. His arms are never not opened to us.

Today I was gifted with finding a 5 minute audio devotional called, Living The Upgraded Life in a devotional soaking set by Graham Cooke. And oh, I was immediately drawn into God’s Presence and it felt as if I was lifted up to another dimension.

I want to gift you also with this. Please carve out 5 private, undistracted minutes sometime soon, to listen, to be still, to open yourself up, to receive and to be loved on and ministered to by the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. [link is above underlined and bold]

Please share in our comments if you did and perhaps how you were ministered to.

Other Links:

Do you crave the secret rest of God?

Free soaking music with Julie True


I am a Canadian married to an American and living in the USA, therefore US Thanksgiving occurs a month after Canadian Thanksgiving (October). It seems each Canadian Thanksgiving, a sadness of sorts creeps over me for a few days as I would like to be in my parents home, gathered with my family on that occasion. For some reason, the most meaningful holiday all year is Thanksgiving. For me it is a tangible, cognizant time of contemplation, soul-searching and celebration. I find it is a time of year when I truly draw close to God in relationship.

I don’t decorate much for other seasons or celebrations but I REALLY love to decorate for Autumn and Thanksgiving. I want to make a public proclamation in my neighborhood and present a reminder to BE THANKFUL. I even get my beagle involved🙂 [More posting below photos]…

For a while now, I’ve been practicing the daily habit of Thanksgiving. I do it immediately upon opening my eyes in the morning, it’s very easy to do when I am outdoors in nature, which I am each morning for an hour (dog walking/jogging), during dog walking (my p/t job), cycling (trying to be consistent and cycle 10 mi/day) and then during the early evening physical activity (cycling, hiking or dog jogging).

When I find myself complaining in my ‘inner chatter’ about something, the Holy Spirit is so faithful to remind me to focus on the positive, so once again I declare with my voice things that I am thankful for. From time to time I even apply grace to find something to be thankful for midst the event that I’m not all so pleased about. This habit I’m trying to form takes deliberate intention and it is becoming more natural.

I find that as I practice this, my soul fills with joy, I smile more, I like to worship more and I am participating less in my chronic besetting sins, one of them seeing the glass half empty rather than half full. This week seemed extra challenging to me and I found myself grumbling profusely in my inner chatter. When I noticed how my body and emotions were reacting and ‘being’ when I involved myself in this, it is then that I ‘picked myself up by the bootstraps’, so-to-speak and once again turned my focus to “what is beautiful, right, pure, lovely, trustworthy…” Philippians 4:8.

I am finding when the enemy brings accusations to my mind, whether that accusation is against myself or someone else, and then a judgement forms, I MUST “submit myself to God and resist this with the Word of God”  James 4:7. I also do this with praise and thanksgiving. When I do, truly the heaviness and condemnation lifts and my heart is once again light.

When choosing my post title this morning, the word ‘cognizant’ came to mind. I went to the dictionary to verify that word.

Cognizanthaving specified facts or feelings impressed on the mind

Related wordsaware, mindful, alert, attentive, careful, cautious, heedful, observant, open-eyed, regardful, vigilant, wary, watchful, wide-awake, hyperaware, hyperconscious.

Does reading these words also cause you to say, WOW! ?, like I am? This is the point of what Scripture is speaking of, I believe. It certainly made a deep impression on me. It helped bring the prominent and substantial truth to me about how ‘hyperconscious’ and ‘vigilant’ I am to be to “follow after the Spirit and not the flesh/corrupt nature Romans 8:13

It’s all about P.R.A.C.T.I.C.E. isn’t it? A deliberate, intentional choice, effort [the active use of energy in achieving a resultto produce a habit, whether its the habit of thanksgiving or resisting being negative or critical.

How I thank God for the gift and presence of His Holy Spirit to us who are His! Aren’t you?

This morning on Facebook, a friend posted a link to a site for a 21-day gratitude challenge. I decided to participate. Will you also?

US Thanksgiving is 21 days away; let’s get started! Invite a friend to participate with you or to be accountable with. If you decide to participate, will you let us know on my Facebook page so we can all be accountable together and pray each other through the next 21 days?

I’ll leave you with this lovely song by Don Moen: Thank You Lord to help you get started!

Could you use some great tools and resources to help you deal with the stress in your life?

Tracie Miles of Proverbs 31 Ministries is offering 7 FREE GIFTS to do just that! Check out the Stressed-Less Living FREE GIFTS page before Octover 7th for all the details!

Click HERE to read the Table of Contents of this book

Click HERE to read the intro and the first chapter

For FREE RESOURCES  on this topic, Go to:  http://www.stressedlessliving.com/#!freebies/cg47


I am VERY excited to share this link with you as today is the First day of 8 weeks of online study of the book of Colossians with Good Morning Girls.org!

We are SO very blessed to have all endless online resources to feed our spirit and encourage our Christian growth in the knowledge of Christ for the transformation of our inner being so as to live a life worthy of the Lord and be pleasing to Him.

Without a healthy spirit, I believe our minds and bodies will truly not be as healthy as what they can be. And I for one, certainly desire to honor the Holy Spirit as he resides within this temple. I want to please God. I want to live a life worthy of Him.

If you aren’t yet committed or over-committed in a group for your spiritual encouragement,  I invite you to join this exciting study of the book of Colossians.

Here’s the link for today’s study

And please share your inspirations here in our comments if you join!

A pregnancy loss is still a Birthday”

Stillbirthday.com is a wonderful sight offering support, encouragement and resources for women and families experiencing pregnancy loss, at any stage, that I highly recommend. Please pass along this website to your women’s groups, church groups, to friends so that others can be comforted and benefit from the resources provided.


In my 2nd year of marriage (1991), I experienced a miscarriage but did not know it until I took a Crisis Pregnancy Center worker training course a year or so later, as it was through the videos that I watched that I realized the image I was viewing on the screen was pretty much the resemblance of a tiny piece of tissue that I had expelled previously.

At the time of that event, I simply had experienced very bad cramps, backache, nausea etc. which for me was much the same as I experienced each month, as I had a debilitating conditions called Endometriosis. Since expelling large clots and tissue was a norm for me, I didn’t think much about it, yet I did examine it out of curiosity. It did not resemble that which I was accustomed to seeing.

No more thought of that event occurred to me until viewing the image on that video and then that realization was startling, as I had two detriments to strongly prevent a pregnancy from ocurring:

1. Endometriosis frequently prevents pregnancy

2. A surgery that I had undergone –  highly reduced the chance of pregnancy to about 1-2%

So to realize that I indeed had been pregnant settled it within me that if I were to ever become pregnant again and carry a baby to term, it certainly would have to be with Divine intervention and probably God’s definite will that I become a mother for that child.

Several years after this, my husband and I had 2 separate opportunities presented to us to adopt newborns. We prayed about it and in each case, responded affirmatively. We named each baby before they were born and one, a little boy, we named Brandon Michael Aaron, we actually got to hold and rock on the day of his birth. Then and there in our hearts, he was our baby. Due to the Law, we were not able to bring him home until day 3 and it was on that day that we received the devastating phone call from the Mother’s  Lawyer saying, ‘do not come; she has changed her mind’.

The letdown, disappointment and sadness was profound and to add to that, the insensitive comment of ‘it’s better that it happened now than if the baby was older’ added a bit more injury.

[We’ve all done it though, haven’t we? We mean well but we’re brain-dead and insensitive when we open our mouths to offer comfort. It’s good to forgive and walk away at those moments].

There were sad events that followed that baby’s early life and that of his older brother and eventually ended in the tragic death of their mother, sending both boys to foster care. But here’s the redemptive glory and mercy of our Compassionate Father God:

Approximately 5 years after we held little Brandon Michael Aaron, we saw him again as part of God’s great and amazing BEST PLAN for him! We were at church and a visiting Francophone pastor from a neighboring community was speaking and his family was with him. A friend who had known about our near-adoption situation shared with us who this couple was, and who their sons actually were: those two little boys were the sons of that Mother who decided to not adopt out her baby boy to us 5 years prior. And what had our loving, compassionate God done? He had given a childless couple a family and he had provided a loving, christian home for 2 young boys in the foster care system!

“And anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf is welcoming me” [Jesus] Matthew 18:5

Talk about the elation and rejoicing in my heart at learning of this marvelous situation. I actually wept with joy. I praised God for that storm we had passed through and thanked Him for His much greater plan for those little boys. It was one of those aha teaching moments: to always trust our Heavenly Father, for what is allowed to enter our lives can be used for our spiritual good and for His greater glory. I do want to continue to live and trust like that, but of course, I don’t do so consistently.

The above personal account is not shared to in anyway bring shame or discomfort to any grieving parent or family. I simply wished to share my own personal pregnancy/miscarriage experience and it was only natural to share about the failed-adoption story as well.

Wishing all the grieving parents and families the compassion of friends and of the community and comfort from our Heavenly Father as you pass through this heart-breaking valley. May StillBirthday.com be a helpful part of your healing  journey.

Recommended Links:

Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep – free professional portraiture to parents suffering the loss of a baby

Seeking Purpose and Giving Back – the blog post of Lisa Marie Imagery, who is a volunteer photographer for Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep

Online Community Group MSIL – Miscarriage, Stillborn and Infant Loss

When Tragedy Comes To The Just – article and list of helpful things for parents newly grieving the loss of a child

There Must Be A Reason – Song

In Christ’s love, Lori

P.S.: I would be most glad to pray for you in your time of loss and grieving and offer utmost confidentiality to you and yours.

Email: christianhealthcoach@gmail.com

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