Christine Duncan

Love, Laughter, Life Preservers

It’s Been A While… And a Book Review, Too.

I know, I know. It’s been a minute.

The last time you heard from me, I was figuring out what recovery from Lyme was going to look like. And what I might even do with the blog and the writing once recovery was done.

Let’s just say, God knew exactly what He was doing when He asked me to enter into His season of waiting and rest. Because it turns out that the process would feel more like a battle than a healing for the last year and a half.

Not only that but in the shift of priorities, self-care, and physical recovery, I could feel the pull of starting fresh, being given a new lease, and as lovely as that seemed, it also felt like pressure.

Once the waiting was over, who was I even going to be? And what would He have me do?

Turns out, before revealing any plans, He’d prompt me to take this time to start making some personal changes, and teach me how to heal in many ways.

One of those ways was how I was to start looking at food. Food as a tool, not an escape. Food as connection, not isolation. Food as a blessing, instead of a badge of shame or defeat.

And that, my friends, is where my first book review in FOREVER AND A DAY comes in.

With perfect timing, just as I’m feeling overwhelmed at changing my food regime, a sweet friend places a book in my hands and asks me to maybe say a few words about it if its message and author resonate with me at all.

Friends, on almost every page was the guidance, truth, council, and testimony for the kind of relationship we all need to have with food, with ourselves, and with the Good Father.

The book is The Living Diet: A Christian Journey to Joyful Eating, the author is Martha Tatarnic, priest and pastor, wife and mom, and a home-gown Canadian. But most importantly, as you turn each page and underline yet another paragraph, you come to understand she really is adept at communicating “why Jesus chose food to build community and reveal the love of God.”

In a world that loves to profit off of being at war with our bodies, Tatarnic’s message boils down to our intention towards ourselves and food, how poorly we use it, worship it, think about it, abuse it, and waste it.
And then gives us the good news, that there are simple yet powerful ways to stop obsessing and to start utilizing all the ways God has created for us to enjoy our relationship with food.

As I read each chapter, I started to get a much different picture of what food could represent, and how God has designed us to experience freedom in regards to it. And joy. Peace. Community too.

I turned the last page knowing I had been armed with an attitude shift, a healthier perspective, and small but practical approaches to being more intentional about how food belongs in relationship between God, others, and myself.

Armed, I tell you. Equipped. So encouraged.

I know this message will really resonate with many of you. This beautiful book feeds the soul as well as the belly, and I can’t recommend it enough.

I will list all the necessary links below if you’re interested in knowing more, and I send a big thank you to Martha for bravely putting her journey into words for the rest of us. If you’ve had a similar experience with this book, be sure to let her know right here on FB!

Book Website
Amazon.ca
Goodreads
Youtube
Blog

You Wait Here, I’ve Got Some Things to Rearrange

When God Says Wait

It was a kind of bizarre moment.

The journey was already long and drawn out, a roller coaster of health ups and downs, answers to prayer, release and relief.

So when I started to prepare to enter back into life as I knew it, and suddenly felt a holy hand go up in front of my hurried hustle, I was confused.

He had answered my prayer. I had come back to life. So why the hold-up?

Turns out He knew some things.

Some things that would happen to me. Some things He would do in me.

And I wasn’t lacking in faith.

I wasn’t doubting the answer.

Hadn’t got a head of myself.

But there was a stretch where I couldn’t figure out why I was still in a holding pattern when it seemed perfectly safe to land.

At one point I was talking to a friend who knows a thing or two about holy rest and waiting on God, and admitted that I was so ready to get back to all the things I loved, was actually raring to go for the first time in almost a year, and yet felt very definitely that He was being firm on “wait”.

But didn’t know what I was waiting on.

Her emailed response settled upon me, and asked me something my heart hadn’t considered, her words adding light to see more clearly by.

“Think of this season in terms of God saying to you, ‘Can I trust you with what I have in mind next?”

He had brought me this far, so if He was saying wait a bit longer He had a good reason.

My heart un-clenched.

I realised I wasn’t given a “wait here on a never-ending loop” directive but a “you wait here, I’ve got some things to arrange” directive.

So I relinquished all my “here I come, world” and instead offered up a “here I am, Lord.”

And I waited.

Turns out, He knew that my new health season would require some recoup that wouldn’t kick in right away. That when it did, He would have to see me through it, hard.

And so I entered a season of healing pains.

My body so happy to be rid of a little something called Lyme that it would then try to regenerate every bit of tissue, nerve, joint, muscle, and brain wave that disease had affected through the years… all at once.

Sometimes we know we’re the most alive, and in the most healthy transition of our lives, when we enter a pain cycle, the proof that life really is returning.

Like when a limb feels like it’s on fire after it’s fallen asleep, He knew that would be me- body, mind, and soul, for another 7 whole months.

Good pains but still hard pains that would wipe me out.

And He had known they were coming.

You circle in a holding pattern until the tower says all is clear. It’s for your safety.

So while I embraced His “wait” and used it to rest and heal further, He began to reveal that He was not idle while I was out of commission, but that He was rearranging and orchestrating some things, old and new.

“You wait here, I’ve got some things to rearrange.”

“I need to clear the tarmac. I’ve got to prepare you for what’s to come. I know you’re going to need more time to adjust.”

“I’m doing this not just so you can get back, but so that you can thrive. ”

Can I trust you with what I have next? Click To Tweet

I’m posting this because there’s a feeling in the air like we’re transitioning out of the holding pattern and into new destinations.

Will you wait with me, just a little bit longer, as He directs me out of this hard season and into a few things I’m slightly surprised at?

I have a new feeling. That what He has is going to be good. And maybe different. Maybe needing courage.

Always needing faith and obedience.

Thanks for hanging around while this new season is about to be released, readers! It won’t be very long and we’ll be doing this thing called life together again.

Now, you wait here please… I’ve got some things to rearrange.

The Time My Kitchen Was a Battle Zone

A Guest Post for Danielle Macaulay at her blog From Milk To Meat

When my dear friend and fellow writer Danielle asked me to guest post on her blog and write about my journey with my mood disorder, I knew exactly what I should write about, but didn’t know if I could.

I’ve taken a few deep breaths over this ol’ keyboard today, friends.

Seeing as her beautiful blog is about life and food, and family, and kitchens… was I really brave enough to talk about how for almost two decades my kitchen, and therefore my home, was a war zone?

And I wish I was talking about the normal kind of kitchen-as-a-battle-ground.

The small victory over the piles of dishes that never lasts.

The mounds of homework that tangle relentlessly with the mounds of junk mail.

The constant belief that maybe today is the day you won’t be missing that one single ingredient needed for your Pinterest-worthy supper.

Or maybe you’ll be victorious over all the picky eaters who have converged at your single table in one fell-swoop.

Because trust me when I say, that was only the beginning for someone like me.

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Please join me for the rest of this post over at Danielle’s by clicking HERE

Thanks for reading, friends, and praying He takes you through your battle ground in victory!

Doing Busy Better! A Review For You

Book Review for Doing Busy Better!

I don’t know about you, but the busier I become, the less I do well.

This is especially true for me in regards to my chronic Dysthymia. All it takes is to add one more thing to the life-load and suddenly I’m struggling on all levels.

Constantly.

So when the opportunity came up for a chance to read a new book* on the very topic of “Doing Busy Better – Enjoying God’s Gifts of Work and Rest”, I almost did a little dance.

Almost immediately, author Glynnis Whitwer reveals in it’s first pages that this is a dual transformation book. That the words inside won’t just apply to your lifestyle and schedule. Her advice and real-life revelations will also change your spiritual life for the better!

Basically, she had me at this quote tucked inside chapter 1:

“There’s absolutely too much to do in God’s kingdom for us to not be busy about our Father’s business… but there’s too much to do to not rest and recharge in the presence of Jesus.” ~ Glynnis Whitwer
“Doing Busy Better” Enjoying God’s Gifts of Work And Rest

Well then.

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