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6 Ways to ReCharge Your Batteries

 
Hi, there.
 
Does the mundane life drain you? The day in-day out life. The rut.

  • Wake up.
  • Get ready for work.
  • Go to work–or school.
  • Work all day.
  • Come home.
  • Have dinner.
  • Turn on the TV.
  • Fall asleep on the couch.
  • Go to bed.
  • Repeat.

I’ve been there. I am there.
 

My American Bulldog Shuga


 
But I refuse to stay there. As they say in recovery circles: I’m tired of being sick and tired.
 
Here are six ways I’m recharging my batteries.
 
 

Picking up a hobby again.

God gives us talents and interests, activities that spark life and excitement in us. When we don’t exercise those creative outlets, we grow frustrated and lack the glow that comes from things that bring us pleasure. It could be photography, writing, woodworking, sewing, to name a few.
 
This past week, I contacted a local Choral group. Lo and behold, just in time for auditions. My heart flutters just thinking about singing alongside others again.
 

Listening to the Bible.

I’m going to be honest. Reading the Bible? It hasn’t been top on my list lately. It hasn’t even been on my list. The desire to read the Bible–or anything, for that matter–has been nonexistent. Does it really need to be as cumbersome as we’ve made it?
 
So I’ve started listening to the Bible on my morning commute to work. I plug in the YouVersion Bible app into the car’s audio system. Hearing God’s word out loud early in the morning is helping me to focus on Truth throughout the day. It’s also giving me hope and faith that God is with me, even in my funk (Romans 10:17 NCV).
 

Exercising.

The dilemma… Not having enough energy to exercise versus exercising to get more energy. It’s counterintuitive, a cyclical conundrum. But I hear it works. So I’m taking small steps to make my life less sedentary. For me, that’s parking farther away at work or at the grocery store. Or doing leg lifts while at my desk. Even walking the dogs more. (Note: Morning walks in Florida… sweat central.)
 

Spending time outside.

There’s just something about being outside. I’d forgotten how much I love the green of the trees. The rustle of the grass under my feet. The sun shining on my face. (Did you know that the sun provides necessary vitamins that help with depression?)
 
The outdoors is God showing off. The work of His hands whispers to me, to you–and to anyone who will stop and notice.
 

Getting back to date nights.

Setting and sticking to a date night schedule can be difficult, especially with three kids. I’ve noticed that part of my funk is not getting to spend quality time with my husband on a regular basis. I miss those moments.
 
Planning our date nights is taking a little more creativity. Hubs and I have already decided to join the gym together. Not necessarily a date, but it’s a start. Maybe we’ll take a detour by the ice cream shop instead.
 
Anyone up for watching three kiddos?
 

Visiting my doctor.

Lastly, to be sure there’s nothing wrong other than my usual ailments, I’ve scheduled some doctor visits. Gotta take care of this temple.
 
 
My funk will come and go. It might even linger. (Oh, has it lingered.) But acknowledging my issues and working on them… That’s what the recharged life is all about.
 
 
Come alongside…. Are you in a funk? Have you ever been in a funk? How did you get out of it? What other tips can you add to this list. Please share with us in the box that says, “Leave a reply.” Remember you can reply anonymously.
 
 

Is it time yet, God?

 
 
Hi, friends!
 
So I was scrolling down my Facebook newsfeed, and a meme caught my eye. I shared it on my author page because it resonated with me at the time. Thing is: I haven’t been able to get it out of my mind.
 
Here it is:
 
timepicforpost
 
Let that sink in.
 
We hear that God is never late. I believe it 100%.
 
But I’ve never considered that “God is never early.” That’s the part that has stuck with me.
 
I picture a timeline. If one point marks early and another point marks late, then there has to be a certain point on the timeline that is…
 

  • Right
  • Perfect
  • Exact
  • Precise
  • Dead-on

 
Think about the birth of Christ. Jesus didn’t come early to Earth. Neither did He come late. He came at the precise time. In the fullness of time.
 

 
But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son. (Galatians 4:4)
 

 
When everything was as God wanted, Jesus made His entrance onto the stage called Earth. Nothing and no one could rush his birth. Nothing and no one could stop it from happening. Everything was as it should have been for His supernatural entrance.
 
 
Same with His death and resurrection.
 

 
He gave himself to pay for the sins of everyone. That was a witness given by God at just the right time. (1 Timothy 2:6).
 
You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. (Romans 5:6)
 

 
And with the death of Lazarus (John 11:1-44). Although Jesus knew about Lazarus’ illness, He waited a while before visiting him. By the time Jesus arrived, Lazarus had been dead four days! Both of Lazarus’ sisters told him, “I wish you had been here! Then my brother would not have died.” Jesus replied, “Lazarus is dead. For your benefit, I am glad I was not there. Now you will believe.”
 
 
Friends, I’m going to be transparent here: I have several things I think God is late on in my life. But after seeing this meme, I wonder whether it’s still early for Him to shine. Is it still too early that we’ll think we figured things out on our own?
 
 
TimeYetGod
 
 
I feel like time is running out. But I know He is never late.
 
And now I know, He’s never early. He is on-time. Precise. Exact. Perfect.
 

 
The suffering won’t last forever. It won’t be long before this generous God who has great plans for us in Christ – eternal and glorious plans they are! – will have you put together and on your feet for good. (1 Peter 5:10)
 
Our suffering is light and temporary and is producing for us an eternal glory that is greater than anything we can imagine. (2 Corinthians 4:17)
 
A thousand years to you are like one day; they are like yesterday, already gone, like a short hour in the night. (Psalm 90:4 2 Peter 3:8)
 

 
So … I wait. We wait. With hope and prayer and, many times, wavering faith.
 
And just when I think time is up…
 
 
 
Come alongside… Do you agree with God never being early? Why or why not? What are you waiting for? Does it feel like time is running out? How can you choose to believe that God will be on time? Please share with us in the box that says, “Leave a reply.” Remember you can reply anonymously.
 
 
 

Forgive and Forget? Not Really. (Part 2)


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Hi, friends!
 
forgiveforgetrev1
Several months ago, I wrote the post, “Forgive and forget? Not Really.” In that post, I said I agreed with the “forgive” part of that age-old saying. (If you haven’t read it yet, hop on over to that post and chime in on our discussion.)
 
 
I ended that post saying I would address the “and forget” part in the next post. Summer came and went. So did the holidays, and still no follow-up on the post.
 
 
I haven’t wanted to talk about the “and forget” part–much less, blog about it. Several things happened after the first post that have challenged me in the forgiveness department. It’s as if God was saying:
 
 

“Do you really believe what you say you believe, Daphne?”

 
 
With God’s help, lots of tears, and the help of my family, friends, and my recovery group, I’m working through the forgiveness part–and doing well, at least, for today. 😉
 
 
Lately, the “and forget” part has come to mind, which, if you ask me, shows progress. Does that mean I should just go ahead and forget about what happened? Should I erase the bad things that have consumed me for the past year? Do I pretend the harmful things that have dominated every waking–and “sleeping”–moment of my life since early summer no longer matter? No.
 
 

Pain matters.

 
 
Forgetting the pain my family and I have gone through would also erase the good that has come from it.
 

  • More conversations about feelings and long-standing issues with low self-worth.
  • Healthy boundaries.
  • New directions for our family.
  • A simple life that treasures even the little things.
  • Courage to protect myself and my loved ones.
  • Restored relationships with estranged family members.
  • Right priorities.
  • Tighter family relationships.
  • Renewed importance of the fragility of life.
  • Better listening skills.
  • Learning about each others’ lives–things we didn’t know about each other that we will carry with us for years to come.
  • Giving and receiving advice across generations.

 
 
Who knew that negative situations could produce such positive change? And this is just a short list of good coming from bad! There were plenty of good things in our lives last year. That’s an entirely different list of God’s blessings. Should I forget it all–2014?
 
 
When we “forgive and forget,” we essentially tell God our pain is better left in the past. Nothing good has come from it. I am where I am today by my own merit, not anything God has done.
 
 
“Forgive and forget” is an affront to the sovereignty of God who turns evil into good (Genesis 50:20, Romans 8:28).
 
 

Pain is important to forgive. It’s also important to remember.

 
 
forgiveremember2“Forgive and remember” until you can do so without an inkling of anger, bitterness, or revenge. That, my friend, is healing. “Forgive and remember” speaks hope: Look what God did for me in this situation. He can do the same for you. That’s the power of remembering. That’s the hope you can share with others. “Forgive and forget” lacks hope. It has nothing to offer anyone. Your pain is in vain.
 
 
My pain is not in vain. God has brought much good from it–and I know He will continue to do so. This is the hope I offer you: God can bring good from whatever wrong was committed against you or whatever hurtful thing was said about you.
 
 
Forgive and remember.
 
 

 
All praise to the God and Father of our Master, Jesus the Messiah! Father of all mercy! God of all healing counsel!
 
He comes alongside us when we go through hard times, and before you know it, he brings us alongside someone else who is going through hard times so that we can be there for that person just as God was there for us. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)
 

 
 
 
Come alongside… Do you agree that you shouldn’t forget the wrongs committed against you? Why or why not? What have you been trying to forget that you need to remember? Please comment in the box below. Remember, you can comment anonymously.
 
 
 


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Thankful for Abundant Life, Clear Skies, and Stable Booths

 
Happy Monday, friends!
 
I hope you had a joyous Easter. We had such powerful worship at our morning church service. It moves me to tears to know my God is alive. And because He lives, we can too. And not just live, but live abundantly.
 

 
I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly. (John 10:10)
 

 
This past Saturday, I had the privilege of showcasing my books at “Meet the Author on the Park” in Winter Haven, Florida. This event was sponsored by my friends Sandy Knowles at Three Rivers Press and April Whitt at Grapefruit Press.
Cover3-widget
 
I met many people and was able to learn about their lives, their interests, and their troubles. Sandy and April, the organizers of the event, offered authors the opportunity to speak to the audience via a loudspeaker system. (Yikes!) I was up for the challenge and spoke to festival-goers about some tips for writing about difficult topics. I also shared about my latest book, Dragonflies, Ketchup, and Late-Night Phone Calls: 31 Days of Journaling God’s Blessings.
 
 
I haven’t officially shared with you about this book, which was such an inspiration to me as I wrote it. Dragonflies, Ketchup, and Late-Night Phone Calls is a unique thankfulness journal where you literally “jot down” your thanks to God throughout your day.
 
 
Here is a snapshot of one of the chapters.
 
 
Book Snapshot
 
 
As you can see, I open each of the 31 days with praise to God and then provide you some space to give thanks to God throughout your day. No journaling for 10, 15, 30 minutes or an hour-not that there’s anything wrong with that. 😉 The approach is to jot down your thanks as you go through your day or when you lie down for the night.
 
 
I asked people who stopped by my booth what they were thankful for that very morning and these were some of their answers:
 

  • Shoes on my feet
  • That I didn’t have to cook Easter dinner
  • That it wasn’t raining (The weather called for rain.)

 
 
By the end of the festival, I gave thanks to God that my booth didn’t tumble away with the wind. 🙂
 
 
During my 10-minute talk, I was honored to talk about the inspiration for my book, which came about during my husband’s job loss last year. Writing Dragonflies, Ketchup, and Late-Night Phone Calls was my way of keeping a thankful spirit during our financial troubles, our roller coaster feelings of hope and frustration, and all of the emotional, physical, relational, and even spiritual side-effects of such a loss. God truly can help us through difficult times when we are intentional about giving thanks in all circumstances. It’s not easy; it still isn’t, but we have renewed hope and know God has been our provider during this time.
 
 
Remember, friends: God might not change your circumstances, but He can change you when you choose to thank Him.
 
CircumstanceREV
 
I was also excited to showcase the Spanish version of the book, hot off the press. 🙂
 
 
To order the English or Spanish version of Dragonflies, Ketchup, and Late-Night Phone Calls, visit Amazon, CreateSpace, or your preferred online book retailer. You may also purchase a copy here on my Web site, and I will mail you a copy with a message just for you. 🙂
 
 
Big hugs. So… What are you thankful for today?
 

 
They stood every morning to thank and praise the Lord. They did the same thing every evening. (1 Chronicles 23:30)
 

 

Relapse Ain’t Got Nothin’ on My Recovery Group


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Hi, friends!
 
RelapsenothinrevLet’s talk recovery. More specifically, relapse.
 
We see it over and over again on the news, mainly with celebrities whose relapse into addictions and unhealthy behaviors results in death. Singer Whitney Houston comes to mind. Just this week, actor Philip Seymour Hoffman died after being clean more than two decades. He relapsed last year.
 
This isn’t just about celebrities. We see relapse more and more in the lives of those around us—family, friends, acquaintances, even people at church. We might be the ones in relapse.
 

I’ve relapsed.

 
This past year has been incredibly difficult for me: Emotional stress, financial issues, and tense relationships. Like others in recovery, I’ve had a hard time not falling back into old habits when I face triggers. I’ve had some missteps–even skidding back to square one in several areas. I’ll be honest: I wasn’t practicing what I wrote two years ago about preventing and reversing relapse:
 

  • Reflect
  • Expose your triggers and plan your escape strategies
  • Look up and re-learn scripture passages
  • Activate your accountability partners
  • Pray, pray, pray
  • Share your story
  • Evaluate regularly

 
(You can find more detailed explanations about each of these tips in part one and part two from 2012.)
 
One thing has been important for me to step back onto–and stay on–my recovery path:
 
 

I started attending weekly recovery group meetings again.

 
 
Recovery groups aren’t just for people who struggle with drugs or alcohol. Recovery groups are for people who struggle with anger, codependency, food addictions, workaholism, pornography addictions, fear and worry, trust, and so much more. People like me and possibly you.
 
I made a lot of progress when I was attending group, so I didn’t see the need to keep going once I was “better.” Now I remember why it’s important to attend my recovery group regularly. I have people who hold me accountable. They don’t judge me, criticize me, or look at me any differently when I make a bad choice. They listen, understand, and love me no matter what. My recovery group keeps me from relapsing. They are my family.
 
 
Attending weekly also helps me to live consistently, my word for this year.
 
 
I don’t know why I ever stopped attending. 😉
 
 
LastRecoveryGrouprev
 
 
Today, I encourage you: If you’re struggling to stay on your recovery path–or if you’re already on an unhealthy and destructive path, find a recovery group in your area. Celebrate Recovery is a great place to get connected. You’ll meet with others who will walk with you, encourage you, and love you.
 
 

Two people are better than one. They can help each other in everything they do. Suppose someone falls down. Then his friend can help him up. But suppose the man who falls down doesn’t have anyone to help him up. Then feel sorry for him! Or suppose two people lie down together. Then they’ll keep warm. But how can one person keep warm alone? One person could be overpowered. But two people can stand up for themselves. And a rope made out of three cords isn’t easily broken. (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12)
 

 
 
Don’t go it alone. Relapse ain’t got nothin’ on recovery groups!*
 
 
Come alongside… Are you staying on track in your recovery? Have you taken steps back? What can you do to get back on the right path? Share with us in the comments below. Remember, you can comment anonymously.
 
 
 
*Note: I don’t mean to minimize addiction by saying it’s easy to recover by solely attending recovery groups. Other resources and treatments might be necessary to address recovery. Recovery groups are just one component to address recovery, relapse, and addictive behaviors.


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Daphne Tarango is a participant in affiliate programs with Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, DaySpring, Church Source, Hazelden, Christian Strong (via Conversant and ShareASale). These advertising services are designed to provide a means for sites like DaphneWrites.com to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to said merchants. Some images and articles may contain links to products on merchant sites. Should you choose to make purchases through those links, please understand that I will receive a small commission. Please do not feel like you need to use these links to make any purchases. The links are only for your convenience. Thank you.

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