Born to Solve a Need…Created for a Purpose & the Apostle Peter’s Shadow. 

Lately, when people ask me how I am doing I am compelled to respond with, “I am crazy, supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, amazingly FANTASTIC!!!” Their mouths kinda drop open as they try to process my answer and what I am talking about. Then, I follow up with, “I have FINALLY found the problem I was BORN TO SOLVE!”. 😍😍

Everything and Everyone that exists on this planet Earth exists to solve some orld. No one is on Earth by random selection or accident. Everyone has been given a Divine Gift to meet some need in the Universe. No one is born by mistake.

When you find your God-given gift; you find the reason you were born. Have you found yours yet?

To explain what I am talking about, I want to share with you a short story, based on real events, I wrote titled:  The Apostle Peter’s Shadow.

The Apostle Peter’s Shadow for most of Peter’s adolescent and adult life seem to exsist for no apparent reason. 

You should understand, the Apostle Peter was a fisherman by trade and by long family tradition. Fisherman live a nocturnal lifestyle. They go out on the sea while the sun is still down, and cast their nets to see what they can catch by sunrise. ( Refer to book of Luke 5:1-5) Most early mornings, when the sun is on the rise and shadows are being “created/ born”,  fishermen are returning home after a long night’s work to rest and sleep and get ready for the next evening’s work night. Peter’s Shadow (could have) thought his existence and purpose in life was to watch Peter while he slept during the day. 

Have you ever felt like Peter’s Shadow? Wondering, Questioning, Why am I here? What is the reason for my existence? Is my life purpose to just watch myself live a boring life of  eating, sleeping and no real impact or purpose? Until one day, I am buried and no one will ever remember that I was here?!

If you can relate to this, continue reading.

Peter’s Shadow existence radically changed on that fateful day (Book of Luke 5). That morning when shadows are ‘born’, ‘Shadow’ noticed a shift in Peter’s daily routine. , Peter decided to follow Jesus instead of return home for his normal nap time. Shift #1.

The rest of the AMAZING changes that Shadow ‘witnessed’ are available for you to  read yourself, I will not write about all them in this short story.

 However, there is one other Shift that I want to point out that radically changed Shadow’s perspective of why he existed. 

Imagine for a moment, that you have felt like Shadow. You have felt the feelings of uselessness, boredom, purposelessness, and the feeling of being completely invisible to the world around you. Imagine….one morning, before 9 am (Standard Middle East time)… something AMAZING changes You, FOREVER.

The day of Pentecost when all the believers are together praying (probably throughout the night) and suddenly a violent wind fills the whole room and tongues of fire are resting on each of the Apostles. And they all start speaking languages that they were not their native language. (Book of Acts 1-2). Peter stands up and addresses the crowd of thousands at the Jewish Pentecost Festival and says, “What you are witnessing is an act of God,…it’s not even 9 in the morning.”

“Shadow’ was just in his beginning stages that morning (most shadows are at their strongest peak at High noon of the day) but he ‘witnessed’ the whole incredible event in Acts 1-2. 

From that point on, EVERYTHING changed and EVERYONE noticed “Shadow’. He was no longer invisible and useless anymore. The sick and dying were laid I’m the street, so that Peter’s Shadow could fall on them and they would be healed. (Book of Acts 5:14-16)

Do you want to find your reason for living?

Do you want to know what is the need you were born to serve?

Do you want to know what is your Divine Gift? 

My suggestion for you is…Ask God…Ask the Divine Creator who is the Source of your gift and life…Go to a quiet place and pray and seek the answer in silence.

I truly believe that God will ANSWER you. (Book of Jeremiah 29)

Nothing exists without a purpose. Everyone on Earth has a Divine Gift inside of them. Everything on the Earth is created for a reason, a reason to serve, to meet some need. Nothing is an Universal accident. Not even the Apostle Peter’s Shadow..😊

God Bless!!

 

Treasured Boot Camp Series

pink-camo
Treasured Boot Camp


Last year, I created and conducted a series titled, Treasured Boot Camp. The series was for the local young girls in my neighborhood. We had “cadets” as young as 8/9 to 17 years of age. The series was to empower and encourage these young girls about their value, worth and Divine blueprint in their Creator’s eyes.

Recently, I surveyed my camp graduates for their testimonies. Their transformations and takeaways were AMAZING! 

B.L ( age 16)
My favorite lesson was when you taught about the most precious and valuable jewel being in the back of store, protected and secure. It was a great analogy how my creator sees us!
Also I think the analogy will help girls to see that you don’t have to be the center of attention to considered valuable. That’s my biggest takeaway from this. Its easy to think that my value comes from what other people think of me but in reality my worth is guarded and secure and no one can strip me of it because it is protected! and this analogy shows that the most beautiful and precious things are only seen by the “OWNER” of the jewel itself and those who are qualified and worthy enough to see it..

E.L ( age 19) ( now in college)
I loved the workshop and I still sometimes think back to it when I struggling with finding acceptance in ( college) campus. It really helped me discover and accepts all of my qualities and realize I am worth something more. and I think it not only helped me find myself but it helped me to get to know the other gals in the group. i think it help to know others and keep in mind what to encourage them about.

B.L ( age 10)
the lessons helped me because…”it made me realize how special I am and how God keeps a special spot for me”

I.L ( age 16 )
The one I remember is being like God’s precious jewelry and we are in a jewelry box which is the Safe-haven where God is protecting the jewelry box and safe-haven. It’s encouraging to know that someone views me as their precious jewel.

If you know of a young girl or group of girls who are in need of these valuable perspectives. Contact me Today, and fill out the following form. I would love to help them have similar experiences.
–Candice Joel Fathi


Ho’oponopono. I love you. I’m sorry. Please Forgive me. Thank you.

 

Making peace with your past self so you can be fully present with yourself right now. Recently, I have been having conversations with friends about this concept of Ho’oponopono. The Hawaiian tradition of mental cleansing through reconciliation and forgiveness. Ho’oponopono WIki

It is the idea of making peace with your past so that you can be completely healed and present for your Today. Ho’oponopono , the way I understand it, is a healing process of clearing out the past, through confession, and reconciliation, by focusing on what is “good, pleasant, lovely, praiseworthy, in yourself. This Hawaiian tradition, is similar to the idea of “self-care,” or ‘taking care of the child within you.” It is not a new concept for me.

My personal conviction is that we cannot give away what we don’t already possess ourselves. Jesus, said that the greatest commandments in the Bible were Love God with your heart soul and mind and Love your neighbor, AS YOURSELF. The assumption, is that we actually LOVE ourselves, and therefore should treat our neighbors with the same kind of gentleness, kindness, respect, and tolerance that we treat ourselves.

What happens when we pride ourselves on, holding ourselves to a higher standard, or we try to act nicely to people around us but “hard lined on ourselves”?? How can we give away, what we are not willing to share with ourselves? What do we do then?

I am sure you have heard it said, we respond and react badly to others when we see something in them that reminds us of ourselves. In psychology this is called “projecting”. Psychological Projection We see something in someone else that is similar to a trait we don’t like about ourselves, but rather than extend compassion, and empathy, we judge and criticize their fault; we blame shift. For example, a lazy person, may see another lazy person, and rather than show love and compassion; they accuse others of being lazy. Or a Christian, who is struggling with their own level of sacrifice and zeal, may come down hard lined, and harshly on others who they accuse of being lukewarm and apathetic.

Rather than connect with empathy toward the faults we can relate to in others.; we may more than often, react in a critical and judgmental way towards them.

Jesus says in Matthew 22:36-40: that the greatest 2 commandments were Love God and Love others. Verse 39 says: 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b] 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.

If we actually, made peace with our past self and our faults, we could actually respond to others with the type of empathy, and compassion, and understanding that the Bible calls us to Matthew 22:36-40. We would be the true healers that God wants for us to be to each other.

 

 

 

 

Connecting Emotionally with Kids. Using Limbic Brain Languages. Testimonials.

I wanted to share a few awesome testimonials from my friends who have implemented Limbic Languages to connect and communicate with their kids.

First, I wanted to explain how I coined the term Limbic Language. A few years ago, while researching behavior and neuroscience studies. I realized that if we want to connect at a core-emotional level, we cannot communicate through the traditional methods of words, and written languages. Words are Useless! 

We must communicate in the Language of the Limbic brain: smells tastes, long term memory which has been connected to music. Music and Memory

The Limbic Brain is the only part of the brain the is fully developed at the time of birth. It is responsible for limbic system that controls your automatic systems like your beating heart, and breathing. The Limbic brain is where long-term memory is stored, also where the seat of emotions and motivation is. The limbic brain also is responsible for smell memory.  The one thing the limbic brain doesn’t have is the function to communicate verbally. 
The limbic brain is why one bite or smell of something can take you right back emotionally and psychologically to a memory long forgotten in your long term memory bank. Ratatouille Taste Test  Theses are the AMAZING brains we ALL have at birth! 

If the science behind these studies was correct and accurate, then we must speak the language of the part of the person that is fully functional at birth to communicate and connect with them at their core level. Those are the Limbic Languages: emotions, motivation, music, and smells.

In my workshops and one-on-one coaching, I work with parents to identify their child’s Limbic language and encourage them to use that as their primary focus for connection and communication. 

Here are a few testimonials from some parents who have put my coaching into practice.

Tina’s testimonial: implementing limbic language with her son and his football coach.

Testimonial from Virginia: “Good morning. I wanted to thank you for yesterday’s talk. You have opened my eyes on how to relate better to my kids. When I came home from work  I was excited to see my son and gave him an apple fritter, he loves them, and he was excited  then when I was cooking dinner  I asked him to help me he couldn’t but he did sit there and talk to me. then in the evening when I put him to bed, he seemed so positive and calm and was letting me see another side of him. He was talking about playing the drums and guitar complete with sound effects. He was so relaxed like his anxiety had melted away.”

Testimonial from Jersey:“Remember when you were talking about our children speaking the same limbic language as us.  Check this out. Growing up, my husband was a baseball and basketball jock and in high school he was MVP both baseball and basketball…I asked him if would he be able to go to practices and it’s mandatory that you have to coach as well sometimes.  He said yes!  The only day that he is off, he will get to be with (our daughter) doing what? ..Speaking the limbic language of Basketball.  

If you want to talk more about how to communicate and connect with your non verbal, or child with special needs, contact me, and let’s talk about how I can help you have a similar experience. 

Email Candice

God bless you.

CJF

“Become yourself, the ‘You’ I planned you to be.” – God the Creator

BECOME YOURSELF

When God created Adam, He put him in the Garden and told him to work. Not the kind of work we assume, like working a job. I have heard it said that God instructions to Adam was not just work but to “Become Yourself”.

Interesting idea to become who God intended for us to become. Become His vision; become who He made us to be. How many of us are working in a job, a 9-5, but we are not becoming who God had intended for us to be when He put us on this earth?

Think about it: seeds become trees. It’s what God intended for the seeds. The eggs become birds that fly; no one can take that away from them. It is what they are. No one can fire a bird from flying. Or a fire a fish from swimming. It is what they are. God intends for all His creation to become themselves, and to become what He intended for them to be.

Also, when God sends His creation to earth, He uploads it with its own raw material and resources. Like flying is innate to the egg, as a tree is innate to the seed. Same is true of us! We have within us already uploaded our software and programming of who we are meant to become. (Jeremiah 1:5 / Jeremiah 29:17 / Psalm 139:13-16) God has our future and plans for us before our first day of life. Our God-given future is innate within us when we are born!

Continue reading “Become yourself, the ‘You’ I planned you to be.” – God the Creator

When you feel like God has abandoned you and let you down. Don’t you care Lord?

**WARNING THE FOLLOWING CONTENTS MAY CONTAIN MATERIAL NOT SUITABLE FOR ALL AUDIENCES**

Have you ever felt like God doesn’t care? Have you ever had a time in your life when everything seemed to be going great and then all of a sudden, out of nowhere, the Lord hands you a curve ball, that makes absolutely NO SENSE to you, and the result is…HEARTBREAK. Have you ever had your heart broken by God?

I understand, that for some people the idea of blaming God, or getting mad at God is a very sacrilegious concept, it seems UNHOLY, SINFUL, and WRONG.

But allow me to explain myself and various examples from the Bible where people, not only felt they had their feelings hurt by God, or Jesus; but they felt in many ways abandoned and completely doubted God’s care. Many times in the Bible, strong and faithful disciples asked, “Lord, Don’t you care…?”

This evening, I went to an AWESOME women’s midweek devotional, my pastor’s wife did a lesson on: What do we do when God hurts our feelings? Do we pull back? Do we rage at the skies, and give God a piece of our minds? These are the 2 typical ways we respond when God disappoints us, and hurts our feelings. We read the story of Martha and Mary when their brother Lazarus was sick and died. Jesus was less than 2 miles away from their house and the Bible states he didn’t come until after Lazarus had died and was in the tomb 4 DAYS!! Both sisters were devastated by the Lord’s decision to not show up, until after their brother, ‘whom Jesus loved’, died and was entombed four days. Both, Martha and Mary, ask Jesus the same question, “if only you had been here, my brother wouldn’t have died.” They were both, feeling let down, hurt, crushed, and maybe a bit abandoned. As if to say, “What happened? Where were you? Why didn’t you show up when I sent for you? You’ve completely broken my heart, Lord. If you had showed up when I asked, none of this would have happened.”

Have you been there? Have you ever felt like God totally let you down, and broke your heart? That IF only the Creator of World, would have shown up; everything would have been different. But He didn’t ‘show up’, or answer the prayers the way we expected and had appealed to Him “in love”. So we like Mary and Martha, and the burly fisherman in the storm, ask: Don’t you care, Lord?

If you know me, or know my story. You know that my heart was broken, when God asked me to step off of the Middle East mission field and return to my birthplace: the USA. I felt devastated, crushed, ticked-off, and completely abandoned by God. I came back to the USA, full of tears, hurt, and resentment. I couldn’t understand why IF God really cared about me, and the mission, why would He ask me to return to the USA? My attitude with God, over the last 14 years (off and on) has been: “Lord, if only you had been here… and wondering: Lord, don’t you care?”

In order to spare you from the LONG and MANY details. I will say this: I believe with ALL of my heart, that no matter what it is we are going through, that God truly cares, and plans for our good. I finally understand the Victim-Society Club, where I was a platinum card member, is built of the faulty and cracked foundation cornerstones that God is Cruel & God doesn’t Care. After 14 years of being upset and angry with God, I realize that God has NEVER abandoned me. (Hebrews 13:5). He did NOT leave me in my darkest times (Psalm 139), NOR in the lowest points in my journey (Psalm 139). God has been SO GOOD to me all the time (Exodus 34) and He has ALWAYS cared about me, and ONLY intended for my good and my future (Jeremiah 29:11).

I don’t know where you are at on you journey. I don’t know if you are hanging onto your victim society club card, taking swim laps in the pool of self-pity tears: like I was for 45+ years. All that time, I never realized that the clubhouse was going to collapse on me and the members because the foundation was FALSE and cracked.

I don’t know if you are just feeling abandoned, and got your feelings hurt by God, like Martha and Mary (John 11); and you are working through anger or, struggling with pulling away from Him.

We ALL our on our individual journeys back to God. We all start our life journey as an idea in God’s mind. ( Jeremiah 1:5) Then, He puts our soul and inside of our mother’s womb and our hearts begin to beat, we are ALIVE and we have life (Psalm 139). And from the time we are born till we enter into the grave, we are on a journey to get back to God, and  to have the pure unaltered relationship we had with Him in the womb: complete and total dependence on Him for our every breath.

God says that BEFORE we are born HE KNEW us and had plans for us, plans to give a HOPE and a future, NOT to harm us. (Jeremiah 1:5 / Jeremiah 29:11) Special note: there is a difference between hurt and harm. Harm is eternally damaging; hurt is painful suffering. Even God Himself suffered excruciating pain on the cross. God promises not to irreparably damage us; He does not promise that we won’t experience terrible pain.

God LOVES us and CARES for all of His created human beings, no matter what we make feel or think. I love Exodus 34 in the Bible because it is the only time God comes down and introduces Himself to a human being, and explains His name, His character to a human being (before the life of Jesus).

Exodus 34:5-7 Then the Lord came down in the cloud and stood there with him and proclaimed his name, the Lord. 6 And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, “The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, 7 maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation.”

God truly is GOOD ALL the TIME.

I leave you with my friend Jana’s video testimony about one of the most painful times in her life. I LOVE how she recounts God’s footprints in the sand, during those times, carrying her and her family through that terrible storm.

God Bless You.

 

 

Have you ever felt frustrated because of misunderstanding and miscommunication with your child or another adult? #canyouhearmenow?

This morning, I attended a business networking meeting with a friend as her guest and was able to share with the attendees about MARVEL VILLAGE, our online community for Special Needs families; a place to help them feel empowered, connected, and have a sense of community.

The networking event was going MARVELOUS, until I was asked to sit in the hot seat as a test subject for how to hone in on the “message of my business”. Anyone that knows me knows how passionate and intense I am when I am speaking about something I believe in: track and field, hurdling, athletics, speaking each other’s love language, communicating with visual learners and exceptional people, and living on the mission field as a Christian missionary. I could, and have in the past gone on and on for hours about what I strongly believe in.

Part of the exercise was to say what is your WHY of what you do and WHAT problem you strongly believe in solving. The presenter asked me the questions and he intentionally changed what I said in order for me to HONE in and reiterate my message. Honestly I left EXHAUSTED! I would say something, and he would change it, and say… oh this is what you mean? I would restate it, and he would again change my words. It was just a simple exercise for a good intention. But it made me SO TIRED!

I left thinking of how our children must feel when they are trying to communicate with us and we FORCE OUR form of communication and project our perspectives ON THEM. They must feel so tired, and so exhausted with their parents, their teachers, or coaches.

One of the statements that the presenter posted on the presentation screen literally snapped me out of the hot seat and ONTO my feet STANDING: “Special needs kids ‘cannot’ communicate…” (I know he was changing my words intentionally) but MAN, was I triggered and UPSET! No, no, no!!!

“ALL children, ALL of them with or without special needs, are communicating with us 24/7. The problem is that we as adults, are not listening on the correct channel!!” When I got home, I explained to my 13 year old son, “Stating someone is ‘INCAPABLE” of communicating is like flying to a foreign country, and declaring the entire nation mentally handicapped or with special needs simply because they don’t speak your language!” Preposterous!!

OUR CHILDREN ARE NOT BROKEN!! They are different and have some challenges and they are unique. They have different thinking styles and different ways to connect and communicate. BUT THEY ARE NOT BROKEN!! They are VERY CAPABLE of many things, especially capturing our hearts. Our kids are our TEACHERS that have taught us what it feels like to LOVE someone UNCONDITIONALLY and INTENSELY. They are not broken, or incapable.

As if that wasn’t enough, then the presenter said, “Oh so the problem is the PARENTS… The parents cannot speak their children’s love language.” NO, NO, NO! That’s not it either!! I was really getting hot and bothered. I said, “Look at me and listen. ALL of our children have been SPECIFICALLY chosen for us to be their PARENTS. 9 out of 9 parents are already FLUENT in their future child’s soul language, LONG BEFORE they are even pregnant or adopt that child. (Please see my earlier blog, “HELP I am LOCKED Out” about speaking your children’s soul language”).

GOD is NOT CRUEL. He wouldn’t abandon our children to parents who were incapable of connecting and communicating with their child at the heart level. GOD searches over the planet and out of 7 billion people He sends children to the PERFECT parents for them. Parents that can communicate and connect with them. (That includes biological and forever families/adopted). I am done with God getting the BAD RAP: “God made a mistake and gave that kid the wrong parents”. Even in broken homes, at some point, God places a guardian angel-adult, to shelter and show love to those kids and show them a different side of parenting and kinder side of humanity. Parents are not broken either! We have ALL been specifically selected by GOD for a unique mission and Divine plan”.

I want to leave you with two messages I received recently from 2 friends I counseled on these 3 things:

  1. Your children are not broken; they are communicating 24/7.
  2. YOU are the perfectly chosen parent for your child. God doesn’t make mistakes.
  3. Speak your child’s soul language; you are most likely fluent in their soul language LONG BEFORE you were their parents.

1) “Good morning. I wanted to thank you for yesterday’s talk. You have opened my eyes on how to relate better to my kids. When I came home from work I was excited to see my son and gave him an apple fritter, he loves them, and he was excited  then when I was cooking dinner  I asked him to help me he couldn’t but he did sit there and talk to me. Then in the evening when I put him to bed, he seemed so positive and calm and was letting me see another side of him. He was talking about playing the drums and guitar complete with sound effects. He was so relaxed like his anxiety had melted away.”

2) “Remember when you were talking about our children speaking the same love language as us.  Check this out. Growing up, my husband was a baseball and basketball jock and in high school he was MVP both baseball and basketball. ….I asked him why he never shared that with me and he said he just didn’t think it was important…Well anyway…I asked him if would he be able to go to practices and it’s mandatory that you have to coach as well sometimes.  He said yes!  The only day that he is off, he will get to be with (our daughter) doing what? Speaking the love language of Basketball.  God opened the door for this to happen and I believe like you said that (My daughter) has been put here to be a solution…  She has brought healing to me.  God had used her to tell me that I have been blind all my life and he’s opened my eyes to see crystal clear.  He’s taken the veil off my eyes. God wants me to know that all my pain and tears and heartache have not gone unheard.  He was there all along but I was looking to the wrong thing and blaming God for the wrong problem.  Isn’t our God so Amazing Candice. Praise God!!!”

 

“Become yourself, the ‘You’ I planned you to be.” – God the Creator

BECOME YOURSELF

When God created Adam, He put him in the Garden and told him to work. Not the kind of work we assume, like working a job. I have heard it said that God instructions to Adam was not just work but to “Become Yourself”.

Interesting idea to become who God intended for us to become. Become His vision; become who He made us to be. How many of us are working in a job, a 9-5, but we are not becoming who God had intended for us to be when He put us on this earth?

Think about it: seeds become trees. It’s what God intended for the seeds. The eggs become birds that fly; no one can take that away from them. It is what they are. No one can fire a bird from flying. Or a fire a fish from swimming. It is what they are. God intends for all His creation to become themselves, and to become what He intended for them to be.

Also, when God sends His creation to earth, He uploads it with its own raw material and resources. Like flying is innate to the egg, as a tree is innate to the seed. Same is true of us! We have within us already uploaded our software and programming of who we are meant to become. (Jeremiah 1:5 / Jeremiah 29:17 / Psalm 139:13-16) God has our future and plans for us before our first day of life. Our God-given future is innate within us when we are born! Continue reading “Become yourself, the ‘You’ I planned you to be.” – God the Creator

Taste and Smell that the Lord is GOOD!!- my MARVEL story

I am super excited and encouraged to write for the Marvel families. I woke up thinking of the MARVEL families this morning.

Many of you know this story, but I wanted to share how I became a Special Needs / MARVEL family’s advocate. What is my MARVEL Story?

Back in 2009, the day after Christmas, I had a very special dream about my friend Paula’s daughter, Maia who has Downs Syndrome. I could have considered it a normal dream but it was not. At that time, although we were not close friends, my dream was about Paula’s child, instead of my own and strangely, ‘dream-Paula’ was Caucasian, not Afro American. So there were more than a few extra-ordinary things about the dream that had me believing it was not ordinary. In my ‘MARVEL’ Dream, I used a handmade book to study the Bible with Maia to explain scriptures and spiritual concepts to her. The next morning, I woke up very early, (also unusual for me 😉 frantically writing down all the pages I saw in the dream Bible study.

The next day I called Paula, and excitedly told her “I have to meet you ASAP for lunch or coffee there is something I need to show you and talk to you about” Not really the kind of phone call you want to get from your pastor’s wife on your Christmas holiday. 😉 Nevertheless, Paula, agreed to meet me for coffee at a café, in Stafford, VA.

After I explained  my dream to her, Paula said something to me that I will never forget, “I don’t know why God chose you to write this book, but this book will not only help kids like Maia, this is going to help adults; even people ‘without disabilities’.  There are many people who need to have the Bible explained in a way that is simple and easy to understand.”

In 2011, after transitioning from of the full time ministry, I finally put in the book digital form. And titled it “Worth More than a Ten Thousand Words”

The following is an excerpt from that book:

Ephesians 3: 7-19   And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

         Knowing how to read and write is NOT paramount when it comes to understanding Gods love and His Word.  Jesus’ own disciples were described as unschooled ordinary men.  

Any child that is gracefully gifted to feel, see, smell, and or touch can experience His love that surpasses knowledge.

I have written Worth More than Thousand Words, with the exceptional learner in mind. By using all their senses your child can have a live experience of the Living and Active Scriptures.

          My history:  When I first moved to mission field in Istanbul, Turkey I was completely unable to communicate in Turkish language: I was completely ‘handicapped’ in reading, writing, or counting in Turkish. I used everything I could think of: pictures, modelling, hand gestures, and acting to communicate. I used anything to help me connect and communicate with others and help them connect with and understand the Scriptures.

This experience helped ME connect to the Bible and God in a way I never had before: kinetically, emotionally, mentally.  I was connecting to God with all my 5 senses: see, hear, smell, taste, and feel.

After living in Istanbul, Turkey for 7 years, my relationship with God and the Bible grew SO CLOSE, SO INTIMATE, and SO TIGHT; I NEVER wanted to leave the mission field.  As I have shared with many of you, in 2003, I left the mission field kicking, screaming and clawing the ground! 😉

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:  

  • How could your experience with your Special family be your mission field?
  • In what way, could God be using your ‘handicaps’ to call you to a closer, tighter, more intimate, and more experiential relationship with Him and His Word?
  • What are the different ways God is calling you to connect with Him, the Bible and others around you? ( kinetically, visually, musically, etc.?)

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL ACTIVITY: The Smell and Taste of Comfort

  • Find a cinnamon flavored item in your home.
  • Maybe its inside of your spice cabinet, or a  warm baked cookie, or cinnamon rolls, (yum!) or maybe a simple cup of warm milk with some cinnamon sprinkled inside of it or  warm cinnamon tea.
  • What do you feel when you smell this flavor of cinnamon?
  • Do you feel a sense of warmth?
  • Can you taste that sense of “delicious-thanksgiving-ness” COMFORT?
  • Ahhh…isn’t that feeling soothing and calming?
  • Where do you feel this sense of comfort? Your nose? Your stomach? Deep within your guts?

This is the feeling of DEEP COMFORT and CALMING PEACE that David describes in Psalm 23.

  • Read Psalm 23. Recite it out loud.

       1 The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing.   2 He makes me lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside quiet waters,   3 He refreshes my soul.  He guides me along the right paths for His name’s sake.  4 Even though I walk  through the darkest valley,[a]  I will fear no evil, for You are with me;  Your rod and Your staff,  they comfort me.   5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.  You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.  6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever. 

FOOD FOR TODAY: TASTE AND SMELL THAT THE LORD IS GOOD!!

(Please Bible scholars don’t stone me. 😉 You could re-write the words of Psalm 23 to read: “Yea though I walk in Death Valley, I am not worried, because you have given me cinnamon tea and cookies to soothe my stomach and make me feel peaceful and comfort. I am never afraid in the presence of my haters, my cup of blessings overflows. I NEVER WANT TO LEAVE YOUR HOUSE! Your spiritual food is AWESOME!” 

The comfort and peace David feels is the similar sense of comfort and peace we feel when we smell cinnamon and drink a warm cup of cinnamon tea. David feels it DEEP within himself, he feels fearless and strengthened by it. He is not afraid because God’s staff and rod guide him and direct him. Psalm 23 is not so much about David’s human courage and  MUCH MORE about God’s powerful ability to make us feel comfort and peace all the way inside deep in our guts and souls!

How do you feel when you “Taste and Smell that the LORD is GOOD?”

Try it and let me know what you think?

In Him,

Candice Joel

 

 

HELP, I think I am LOCKED OUT!

Every parent wants to connect with their child. No parent ever has thought or said, “I wish I could be permanently LOCKED OUT of my child’s heart and her world”.  Recently, while doing research for my graduate course for teaching  children with special needs and disabilities, I had an epiphany: There IS a key into each of our kids’ worlds. NO PARENT is hopelessly locked outside of their child’s world without a key.

God, the Creator of our amazing, special, unique, exquisite children, places a key outside for EVERY parent to have access into their child’s world. No parent, fostered, adopted, biological is a parent by coincidence, mistake, nor chance. The Creator, of our awesome children, knew LONG AGO that you were the Mommy or Daddy that was going to be in this child’s life. And like every well-prepared host, God leaves a key outside for us parents to find so that we can welcome ourselves into our children’s heart and world.

I recently visited San Diego, California, for my grandmother’s funeral. Although the visit was a surprise trip for me (none of us know the date someone will die), my cousin who hosted me was totally prepared for my trip. She had a guest room, linens, and comfortable bed ready to welcome and receive me. She made sure that there was a house key left under the mat for me to let myself in. What a pity it would have been if she had brought the groceries, filled the fridge, cleaned the house, and dressed the bed and FORGOT to leave a key outside for me to get into the house! I would have been locked out and missed out on an awesome connecting experience.

My cousin is AMAZING; a real life Puerto Rican Wonder Woman. However, her amazing preparations and home organization skills cannot compare to the Divine Creator. The Divine Creator of the moon, the sky, the trees, the mountains, the flowers and the bugs on the ground, is the ULTIMATE HOST. God knew long ago exactly who our children would be and He thoughtfully places a KEY outside for us to WELCOME ourselves into our children’s worlds.

For parents who have children with special needs, or a disability, the feeling of being “locked out” or disconnected with a non-verbal child can be all too familiar. The word autism is from the Greek word “auto”,  which means “self”. Autism is defined as being locked inside of one’s self thoughts or world. Dr. Temple Grandin, autism advocate, author, and professor says, “If you want to know how to connect with your child with autism, look at what is your child in to, what is their obsession.” A light bulb went off in my brain when I heard this. “Amin! Amin!, God places a key outside each of our children’s world so that NO PARENT is LEFT outside!

Before, you doubt this. I have seen this epiphany put to the test. My friend’s daughter, Maia has Downs Syndrome. She is 16 and not coherently verbal, yet. Maia’s soul language is music. She knows her numbers and can communicate using written language and numerical symbols. When God searched for the perfect parents for her, He found her a Mommy, who sings in choir, and a Daddy who is a producer and musician. Coincidence? I don’t think so. Whenever I talk to beautiful Maia, I sing to her; and we connect because we are speaking  in her soul language.

Another family friend of mine has 3 boys with autism. Their oldest son, Eddie, loves to make clouds by rubbing chalk with his fingers. I talked with his dad and told him that I thought he was a probably what Dr. Grandin calls: a pattern thinker and really good at geo-spacial thinking.  His dad looked at me totally puzzled and said, “He is, but HOW did you know that?”. I said, “I just observed him in class and saw that he LOVES making clouds with his fingers”. I also mentioned Eddie probably would enjoy other pattern/cloud making activities: Making dust clouds, or making colored clouds using coloring dye in a water tank. His dad stared at me kind of bewildered and asked, “He does enjoy that, BUT how did YOU know that?”. I explained to Eddie’s dad that I figured, “You are an amazing audio visual engineer for our church congregation. Therefore, God knew that the perfect Dad who spoke Eddies’ geo-spatial-pattern heart language, was you John, a AV mastermind. ” 😉

My last story, is about my girlfriend, Laticia. Her very sweet daughter has a very rare disease that less than 100 people nationwide have been diagnosed with. It has effected her daughter’s development physically and delayed her communication. However, Laticia’s daughter DOES communicate and connect with her dogs, Chico and Lola. I shared Dr. Grandin’s Ted Talk and my epiphany with Laticia.  As we began to talk about Chico and Lola, her daughter looked directly at me, gave me focused eye contact and started to smile and laugh; she “knew” we were talking about her furry buddies and she was “fully engaged” in our conversation. Laticia is in the process of getting Chico an official caregiver pet vest so he can travel with the family and her daughter can have a buddy with her to help her make connections.

God has not abandoned parents to irrelevancy and a life of being locked out of our children’s worlds. We may need to look for the keys in a different location. Just remember, not every spare key is under the welcome mat, some are on the door frame, or hidden in an old plant on the porch, or on the dog’s collar. But regardless, there IS a key for us parents to find, unlock and enter into our children’s worlds.

Where do you think the key to your child’s world is tucked away?

How do you think you are the perfectly chosen parent to use that key?

God Bless!

-Candice Joel