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Saturday, July 28, 2012

Zippy’s Friend—Stefan

Stefan is a survivor of Amniotic Band Syndrome.

Candida: Did you like Zippy and his story?
Stefan: Yes
Candida: What was your favorite part?
Stefan: When he saved his friends.
Candida: Did it help you in some way?
Stefan: Yes
Candida: What is the biggest challenge you have overcome?
Stefan: Starting school and being teased because I am different.
Candida: What is the biggest challenge you still face?
Stefan: Not sure.
Candida: What advice would you give kids with differences or those afraid of having surgery?
Stefan: I have no advice on this as I haven’t had surgery yet.
Please help me pray for Stefan. It’s not easy being different and I hope God blesses everyone who meets him to see how wonderful he is. Thank you Stefan, for sharing your pictures and answering my questions! I truly enjoyed it. God bless you and your family.   
It is such a wonderful feeling to share Zippy and his story with kids! And I can’t even explain how God blesses me when I see a child holding my book, knowing Zippy gets to be a part of his day. I pray God blesses all children to know they are truly amazing—exactly as He made them.

Friday, July 6, 2012

My Anchor, my God

Life is one big lesson. Some of them we learn and others we put aside. Nevertheless, God takes the time to work with us all. He takes the times to lead us and guide us and warn us of the trouble lurking ahead. However, there are times when we listen and times when we ignore Him and His pleas.

In those times, He has to try something else. His gentle foreshadowing is often forgotten until trouble strikes with full force. And then we understand why God warned us and pleaded. Suddenly it all makes perfect sense, only a little too late to make a difference now.

However, there is good news! If we walk by faith, adhering to His commands, we will have the absolute BEST life possible upon this Earth. God doesn’t ask much of us and His rewards are far greater than any trouble or heartache. I’m not saying life will be easy because I can assure you it will be hard and right down impossible at times, but when God moves in the midst of the storm, it will all be worth it.

If you’ve read my books or blog, Facebook or Twitter posts then you know I think God is so wonderful. You’ve already read how good He is to me. It seems there is a blessings and testimony in everything. If I wrote every moment for the rest of my life, I still couldn’t praise Him enough for just one of His beautiful blessings upon me.

My life has changed with leaps and bounds. I’m in awe at how He is molding me and shaping me. Sometimes I don’t even recognize my own reflection, anymore. I can’t believe what God has done for me. How He opened my eyes and gave me a new perspective on life. I can’t believe how He has pushed me outside of my comfort zones and made me stay there.

It seems every day is filled with something new and different. When I face one fear, another one beckons to me. While my list of accomplishments might not be significant to anyone else they are major to me. Every victory is a testimony for my God.

Last week, my ribs came out of place. It hurt and I left work to get it fixed. After it was back in its place, I was fine—really glad it was over. However, my feelings of triumph soon faded when it dislocated again. The second time it hurt worse, but it was still tolerable. By the third time I was over it. I was swollen and weaken both in body and soul. I couldn’t understand the reasoning for my pain. I couldn’t understand why nothing helped me.

By the seventh dislocation, I was weak, numb, battered, broken—and afraid. I wasn’t able to do simple chores. The effort to take a shower was almost unbearable. I struggled to drive and even eat. I thought about how far I had come, from life two years ago. I remembered what if felt like to hurt with every breath. I remembered how it felt to be dependent on others and so very limited. I remembered the feeling of helplessness as well as hopelessness. I remembered how it felt for the pain to consume my life. And I knew I didn’t want to go back to that place.

I knew God would help me when it was time. So I prayed for me and for others. I used the wonderful tears He gave me and I know He understood each one. And when it got overwhelming, I put one foot in front of the other and walked by faith.

When I thought I couldn’t possibly take another moment of pain, God showed me I’m capable of more than I realized. When the negative, hopeless thoughts emerged I chased them away with God’s word. And I recognized something more about myself—ME AND GOD CAN DO ANYTHING!

P.S. The girl who was terrified of even being on the interstate a few weeks ago DROVE in four lanes of traffic and has a whole new array of possibilities.

Author shares message through Zippy the zebra