Thursday, 21 February 2019

Verbal indigestion

When my children were young we lived amongst a lot of families where we women were all having children or raising children. In the era before every household had 2 cars, we walked our older children to kindergarten or school together, pushing our young ones in prams or strollers. In fact, we called ourselves the “Pram Brigade!”

We looked forward to coming together twice a day toswap mothering tips, discuss household management, recipes and childbearing. High up on this list too were infant welfare visits, vaccinations and Baby’s latest milestone. This was the highlight of our day. And it was good. But as often happens when women meet together regularly, a gradual overlapping of the boundaries of friendship and discretion slowly overtook us. 

A few mothers started gossiping about a neighbour who was not with us on a particular morning. Each woman tried to outdo the previous gossiper with another tidbit of “news” until the poor woman who was the unwilling topic of conversation had been badmouthed into a corner from which there was no escape. I too was guilty of listening, for the morsels of gossip were indeed interesting- I let them slide down my throat easily, relishing the details which seemed to whet our appetites for more.

By the time we reached the kindergarten, this woman’s housekeeping ability, mothering, integrity, morality and even marriage had come under some very expert dissection. We had not only gone through her home and family but had even figuratively been so bold as to enter the marital bed, discussing things that were a matter only between our friend and her husband. 

Suddenly by lunchtime, my absent friend of the morning had become a stranger- a sad figure who obviously had no redeeming points in her life and who was in fact, a person to avoid like the plague. Furthermore, I was suffering from a bad case of indigestion, with the morsels of gossip stuck in my chest accompanied by a vague sense of sadness and guilt. Not yet a Christian, I never thought to pray, but a sense of injustice towards my friend who was the victim of a character assassination was developing, and I found myself grieving for her and our lost friendship. Women can be the cattiest creatures alive. Just a few words can set a bush fire blazing with horrendous results. For the friend who was the victim of this gossiping session, obviously felt something was different the next morning when she took her children to school with us. And there was indeed something different. 

A bush fire had erupted and there was no putting out its flames! Each of us had suffered not only a bad case of indigestion overnight, mulling over lumps of gossip, but those things which were shared had managed to force a wedge between us and this woman. We felt such guilt that we felt uncomfortable with her and she could sense this. Some women tried to compensate by being over friendly and we all came across as false. 

Gradually to the increased discomfort of our maligned friend, we became less verbiose, and our wicked loose tongues at last ran out of things to say. So when at the end of the week our friend announced she was taking her husband to work each morning and then driving the children to school, we all felt that now familiar pang of guilt and regret. We all knew we did not deserve to call ourselves her friend after that morning. And we never did recover her friendship. 

The Morning Of The Gossip heralded the demise of other close friendships too. For each of us in our hearts knew that when women start gossiping you could very well be the next object of interest. Gradually the morning conversations became more formal, with no one ready to be open about anything that was precious to us. Our sense of camaraderie slowly evaporated. And the walks seemed to take forever. 

Forty years down the track, a lot of water has passed under the bridge. I have become a Christian and have learnt the Truth- that God hates gossip and maligning another person. I have repented and try hard not to gossip or listen to it. Whenever I think of my former friend, I wonder where she is and how she is. I wonder how her children turned out and if her marriage survived. I wonder if she overcame her weaknesses and if she regained her health. I pray for her. I pray that she reached out to God and found Him. I pray that she has found some true friends that have come alongside her and really supported her. 

I pray for my other former friends too, that they may have not only taken some antacid for their indigestion that day, but realised the cause of it. I pray that God has taken each one of us through this sad time and taught us the lesson of a loose tongue. And I pray that He in His mercy, stamped out the fire we created and sheltered that needy woman from its flames. I pray that God will see my tears as I write this: tears of sorrow and warning for those of us compelled to speak things of others that we should not. Let my tears help put out the fires of yesterday and bring healing to my friend. And I pray that I will never again suffer from verbal indigestion..

 © Glenys Robyn Hicks 

James 3:1-6 My brethren, be not many masters, knowing that we shall receive the greater condemnation. For in many things we offend all. If any man offend not in word, the same [is] a perfect man, [and] able also to bridle the whole body. Behold, we put bits in the horses’ mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body. Behold also the ships, which though [they be] so great, and [are] driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned abouth with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth. Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth! And the tongue [is] a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.

Wednesday, 20 February 2019

Let the children play!

In the 50 and 60's when I was growing up, we played a good deal of our spare time. Often we played outdoors, making mud pies, making houses in Dad's shed. These houses were not only homes to us, but often were hospitals, churches for weddings, and shops.

Play was often quite physical with the customary games of tiggy chasey, hopscotch, skip jump and marbles and jacks. At school play time we made houses out of stones in the playground. We re-enacted shows on TV such as Flash Gordon and Jet Jackson.

When my children were little, they played similar games to us and I encouraged them by playing with them and making cubby houses for my little girl, Sonia. She would spend many a happy hour making me cups of tea and serving them to me in her tiny china tea service.

Her brother Mark often would jump on her cubby house, trying to fly like Superman, a tea towel tied around his neck. Sonia and Superman would often have a falling out! And later on they were joined by their brother Greg and sister Dianne, getting a ride on the back of their older siblings' trike with the little trailer on the back.

I can still remember with fondness my older son's patience with his baby sister as she toddled up to his cricket bales, knocking them off for the hundredth time, chuckling as he replaced it. She obviously thought that he was doing it for her amusement. They were happy and healthy times.

Today, I have noticed a shift in play. Children don't seem to have much imagination. They get bored easily and need constant stimulation. One child in our family needs a DVD to watch in the car because she gets bored going out and about... bored? I can well remember our fights to have the window seats when Dad borrowed a car for our once a week outing. Everything was exciting!

We had an imagination that came from a natural curiosity with the world, not through constant stimulation of TV, DVD's and X-Box computer games.... There aren't even a lot of children out playing with new bikes and toys in the streets on Christmas morning like days of old. They are too busy being entertained by cyber games and computers. They are getting old and fat before their time.

I saw a documentary recently that said that we must return to the old ways of play, for in them children gained insight to how things worked, and became socially skilled. They learnt many skills both vocal and social and learnt how to co-operate and how to assert themselves without resorting to fighting. They became more confident.

It also found that children who were denied the chance to play with other children or outdoors, lacked the social skills and motor skills found in children who played in the old-fashioned way.

Recently, I have been minding my grandchildren and I have been encouraging them to play out of doors. They have been having a great time riding their scooters, digging in the builder's sand, making mud pies and generally behaving like *children*

It has been good for them and fun for me too. Hearing their laughter reminds me of their mother Dianne and my other now grown children playing as youngsters and it is comforting to know that I am doing them a service by letting the children play.

© Glenys Robyn Hicks

And the streets of the city shall be full of boys and girls playing in the streets thereof. Zechariah 8:5 

Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Guard your heart

I really hate hypocrisy. The world is full of it and it really gets to me. In particular I hate that a person can be the worst person alive, but when she or he pass, suddenly everyone cries crocodile tears and says what a great person they were at their funeral! In my thinking, it's hypocritical. 

Another thing that gets me upset is people who gush all over you, then talk evil of you behind your back. We all know someone like this. Our love should be true-our friendship real and sincere. 

I have learned to get over the hurt of people who say they love us and don't bother to keep in touch or visit us. I saw this with my own father and step-father who were both housebound with heart and lung problems for years before they passed. Everyone of their friends didn't bother not only to visit them, but even phone them- yet there were copious tears and utterances of regret and undying love at their funerals.. and I find the same thing is happening to me. 

In 1969 I found myself pregnant to my fiance at 16 and decided to resist my parents' offer to get an abortion for me or bring up my child as their own, and I married. But my grandmother who was pregnant before her own hasty marriage, refused to attend mine because I was with hurt. 

People, even Christians are notoriously hypocritical at times, which is not only distasteful to me, but smacks of dishonesty and deceit. May we be women of integrity in our living and our living starts with attitude. Let us guard our hearts from hypocrisy at all times.

© Glenys Robyn Hicks

Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. Romans 12:9

Monday, 18 February 2019

Lupus: a hard one to call

Over the past 15 years, I have had so much trouble with aching joints and muscles and tiredness that I have had several series of blood tests for Lupus. Fifteen years ago I have been diagnosed with severe fibromyalgia but there is a question mark over whether I have lupus as well. I am sick of going to the doctors and not being taken seriously.

In spite of getting repeated highly suspect blood results, I am still waiting for a diagnosis. Two years ago I went to a local rheumatologist to get a second opinion. He told me he thought I may have it and asked what my original rheumatologist Dr H thought. I told him she said she wasn't sure and therefore diagnosed me with non-specific connective tissue disorder.

Straight away, he announced that he too thought I didn't have it: after all he had gone to school with Dr H and she was an honours student- if she wouldn't call it Lupus, he wouldn't. I left totally frustrated! And not helped at all. It was an expensive and futile visit.

For anyone who has a diagnosis of lupus or who cares to read further, here are the reasons I believe I have it. Posts are written by myself on But You Don't Look Sick Board.........

Hi. I have been to a rheumatologist and was told that I have Unspecified Connective Tissue Disease and she is not ruling out lupus.

My symptoms are:

extreme fatigue


dry eyes and skin

+ANA- has tripled in 12 months

constantly elevated ESR (mild)

diabetes 2


cardiovascular disease- 3 stents inserted in Oct this year thrombosed radial artery after angiogram

antiphospholipid syndrome

polymyalgia rheumatica

worsening fatigue

sunburnt look across my nose and cheeks

maddeningly itchy raised rash on my back and spreading out to shoulders, and now going up nape of neck and into my scalp- scalp is bleeding from scratching it

severe muscular pains and sore finger joints

swollen glands at back of neck and behind ears

difficulty focusing on things

one lot of eye styes after the other

Mesenteric panniculitis


Grape like blood filled sores in back of roof of mouth that burst and ulcerate- no injury, just happen

Painful fingers- one cant extend straight- wrists and neck and toes ache but not positive for RA

Butterfly shaped MILD transient rash like sunburn after being outside or tired

Extreme fatigue like fibro flare but lasting a month now with mesenteric panniculitis symptoms again

I am not anaemic though. Does this mean I don't have lupus? does it sound like I do have it? I dont want the disease per se, but maybe if I finally got a diagnosis, they could treat it.

Last year I had a return visit to Dr H and she scarcely looked at the results but seemed obsessed with the fact that I have had 3 stents put in my heart and am obese. She said she would put me on Plaquinel if I continued to have pain. I do not intend to consult her again. She diagnosed my identical twin as just fibro, and she now has full blown lupus SLE. My cousin has it also and one cousin has a granddaughter with it... so there is a very strong family history.

Fast forward to today and nothing has changed except I am losing my hair at a rapid rate. My left leg is visibly swollen and painful. My ANA and ESR are even more elevated. I have antiphosphilipid syndrome but most other tests seem OK. Though one with a River Viper serum (?) was abnormal.

The ANA+ was 1:80 in 2005 then 1:323 in  2015 and 
this latest one last month is 1:600 . There seems to be a lot of inflammation but he doesn't know what is inflamed. Tomorrow night I am going to see my doctor and Chris is coming with me. There are now issues with my bleeding too easily. Blood thinners are too potent for me I think. I am a mass of bruises! I cry with joint and muscle pain.

I know lupus is a hard one to call but I want an answer and am requesting more tests and a new rheumatologist. This time I won't tell him about Dr H! Any thoughts and prayers are always most welcome. I just want to be without hurting!

Blessings, Glenys 

Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; Psalm 103:2-3

Sunday, 17 February 2019

What is a home?

A home is a haven and a place of rest,

A sanctuary where love and acceptance

Go hand and hand with the teachings of Christ,

Where He is invited to dwell by His Spirit,

And rule as rightful Head.

A home is the solid earthly foundation

For God’s Word to be lived out daily

And His Love is shown

Even in small things.

Home is a place of worship

Where true expressions of faith

And love for God

Can be expressed in the most intimate

Of relationships, the family.

A home is a blessing from the Lord.

May you find the peace and love of God

In your home.

© Glenys Robyn Hicks

"The curse of the LORD [is] in the house of the wicked: but he blesseth the habitation of the just" Proverbs 3:33

Saturday, 16 February 2019

It's none of my business!

I have been a Christian for over 39 years now, and I have had to recognise that I will never work out things that are too deep for our mind.

I used to wonder how God is God- how He could be the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end...

how the world was created- was it in 6 literal days, or days that equalled eons..

how the Blood covers sin- what was the significance of blood in sacrifice?

how the miracles occurred..

how Jesus rose from the dead... and exactly where He went when in the tomb for 3 days?

There were many more questions I wanted answers to, and I really tried in my limited reasoning to understand...and in doing so, I lost my peace...

Finally, I decided that some things just have to be taken on faith and by trust in God. How God is God and does the miraculous is beyond me. I just have to trust in Him and believe. That's where faith comes in and brings me peace. 

Being faithful and loving God and walking in the Spirit is what God calls me to do- the other stuff, frankly is none of my business....

© Glenys Robyn Hicks

But as it is written, Eye hath not seennor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him. 1 Corinthians 2:9

Friday, 15 February 2019

Don't step out from under God's umbrella

A book I have just finished reading again after many years is “You Can Be The Wife Of A Happy Husband” by Darian B Cooper. In one of her chapters she tells of God’s Umbrella of protection through His Divine Order.In a world where we see the havoc that comes from stepping out of the umbrella of God’s protection, it would serve us well to reassess just what the Divine Order of God’s Protection is. Darian has illustrated the Divine Order in the diagram above.

The illustration is self-explanatory really. In my own life, I have found that when this order wasn’t followed, my life would be out of kilter. I remember the times when I was working outside of the home, that trying to keep the home going as normal, mother my children and be available to my husband at all times produced stress in me that often would end up in illness. I was over committed and fatigued.

God brought me full circle to being a stay at home mother and enjoying it by having me walk through some very rocky valleys. I was hospitalised for weeks at a time during which I was shown how much I did appreciate my home and miss being with my family. A bout of glandular fever which lasted for 6 months, brought home to me that my job was creating a lot of stress that God did not require me to carry. And my children were not being cared for properly by a woman I paid a lot of money to, for before and after school care.

About this time, I was being discipled by a lovely group of Titus 2 women who were the most contented and fulfilled women I had ever met. Through all of these experiences, God showed me that the Divine Order is the best. These women taught me about our priorities as godly women. And I am blessed today to have had the privilege of being a stay at home mother for most of my children’s formative years. I am so grateful to God and to those women.

When a woman places herself under the protection of God’s Umbrella of Divine Order, she not only finds fulfilment as a wife, mother and homemaker, but she allows her husband to become the head of his home- the position given him by God in His wisdom. By allowing her husband to lead, she is strengthening her marriage and home and creating strong bonds to develop between not only her children to their father, but herself and her husband. Where a marriage is strong, there is every chance that godly children will be raised.

And where there is chronic illness, staying under God's Umbrella actually shelters us from trying to take on more than He intends us to have. He knows we are stretched to the limit already and He intends to shelter us from unnecessary burdens we weren't meant to bear.

God has provided the blueprint for a successful marriage and family. It is we who mess things up when we live outside of that blueprint by coming out from under the Umbrella of God’s protection. I urge you ladies, to rethink your life and check if you are living under the protection of the LORD. If not, it would be to your eternal advantage to take measures to step back under His protection and allow God to protect you and your family.

God provides protection for your husband too when he is under His Umbrella of Protection. In providing for you and the family, and despite perhaps being an unbeliever, he is still to be respected as the head of the home. But even so, he is to be in submission to God. This is God’s Divine Order. Many a family has come to ruin because a husband has allowed a wife to usurp his God-given authority as head of the home, and forced his wife to take on the role of leader- a position that God did not intend her to have to take.

We all know of marriages that have suffered because the wife has usurped her husband’s role and has decided to lead. It is often a cause for divorce at the most and the husband’s dissatisfaction at the least. And in this day and age particularly, we often see children ruling the home with demands, petulant displays of temper and tantrums, excessive shouting and fighting, argumentativeness, surliness and disobedience. This is another case of God’s Divine Order being breached- and the family suffer the consequences. Children come under the parents in the Divine Order.

Seeing the trouble that breaching the Divine Order makes for us, we would be wise indeed to stop and reflect just where we are in our own life- and if we find we have come out from under God’s Umbrella of protection for us, we would be prudent in getting back into order so that God can bless us and lighten our daily cares.

I sincerely praise God for making His ways known to us so that we and our loved ones may be blessed as we live under His protection and love.

© Glenys Robyn Hicks

He hath shewed thee, O man, what [is] good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God? Micah 6:8

Keeping peace in your home

Dear Friends,
Our membership is world wide and every religion! We are the keepers of our homes. It is up to us to set the tone for our families. This may be hard, but we can do it! We can do anything for 15 minutes.

Watch your words to yourself and to your babies. We cannot stereotype a people or a religion because of a few bad men. Fear is their goal! When we let go of this fear we have succeeded at allowing peace to enter our homes.

All any of us can do is take care of our little corner of the world; our homes! You can do this by turning off the TV and Facebook. I fell victim to television many years ago. It literally made me sick from watching the negativity of the news all the time.  I am not saying to put on blinders or not to be concerned for your family members who are in the middle of the news, but what I want you to do is keep the home fires burning. Limit the influx of the media. Their goal is to make it sound as bad a possible and I don’t want their one-sided exaggerations to hurt you or your family!

Focus your fears and sadness by doing something to bless your family! Go shine your sink! Fold laundry! Clean out that craft room! Work on your control journal! Pay your bills! Do not spend all your time in front of boob tube having your brains sucked out by fear! Or checking Facebook every 5 minutes. Unfriend people who spew nastiness and hate. Only friend or like pages that lift you up. 

Your children and your pets are very intuitive. You can’t hide your feelings from them. So you have to insulate yourself from those by limiting your exposure. What you think about your bring about! It is up to us to think good thoughts instead of expending energy on worry; use that power to bless your tiny little corner of the world.  Now is the time for us to do what we can, with what we have, where we are! So what can we do?

Feed our families. Get food in the house. Plan your meals so you feel secure. Pull out your family’s favorite recipes and fix their comfort food. Do it together! Set the good dishes and light candles!  Entertain yourselves with your favorite movies. Make a list of your family’s all time favorites. Look for them at yard sales and clearance racks. Gather up some of your favorite books to read aloud.

Play classical music, gospel music, or your favorite music! Let your spirits be lifted in song your special way! Sing together! Play music on the piano, keyboards, or other instruments. Have a sing along! Sing your favorite holiday songs! Go Caroling! Learn how to sing in harmony! What fun! Drag out the karaoke machines!  (if you haven’t flung them LOL)

Pull out the family board games or a jigsaw puzzle. Sit around your dinner table and play games and talk.  You are not going to be able to isolate your children from all of this, but you can edit what they hear and have it come from you! Worry never made any situation better! If you catch yourself doing this, it is time to take care of you!

Remember what the flight attendant always says when you board a plane: You have to put your oxygen mask on first, before you start to help your child. This means keep up with your simple morning and evening routines, continue to declutter for 15 minutes a day and do the missions for your zone.

Your routines will give you structure and comfort! Do Them!! This means getting dressed to lace-up shoes, fixing your hair and face too! When you start to feel yourself get stressed, then change gears and take care of you! This means give yourself a hug! If you don’t know what to do, then go to our homepage and read the Pamper Section, get in the tub, take a walk, or just sit and listen to the birds sing, light candles, turn on all the lights in the house, open up the curtains and let the sun shine in!

Winter is tough on all of us. We can dream about spring, plan our gardens, and plant seedlings. Dream big! Let’s be ready for any emergency. They keep saying we are going to have a long hard winter.

We can do this. We don’t have to let the bad news disrupt OUR peace in OUR homes.  Are you ready to FLY with peace as your guide? by Marla Cilley aka FlyLady

So teach [us] to number our days, that we may apply [our] hearts unto wisdom.  Psalm 90:12
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