Streams In The Desert: February 18th, 2017

Have faith that whatever you ask for in prayer is already granted you, and you will find that it will be   (Mark 11:24).

When my little son was about ten years of age, his grandmother promised him a stamp album for Christmas. Christmas came, but no stamp album, and no word from grandmother. The matter, however, was not mentioned; but when his playmates came to see his Christmas presents, I was astonished, after he had named over this and that as gifts received, to hear him add, “And a stamp album from grandmother.”

I had heard it several times, when I called him to me, and said, “But, Georgie, you did not get an album from your grandmother. Why do you say so?”

There was a wondering look on his face, as if he thought it strange that I should ask such a question, and he replied, “Well,  mamma, grandma said, so it is the same as.” I could not say a word to check his faith.

A month went by, and nothing was heard from the album. Finally, one day, I said, to test his faith, and really wondering in my heart why the album had not been sent, “Well, Georgie, I think grandma has forgotten her promise.”

“Oh, no, mamma,” he quickly and firmly said, “she hasn’t.”

I watched the dear, trusting face, which, for a while, looked very sober, as if debating the possibilities I had suggested. Finally a bright light passed over it, and he said, “Mamma, do you think it would do any good if I should write to her thanking her for the album?”

“I do not know,” I said, “but you might try it.” A rich spiritual truth began to dawn upon me.

In a few minutes a letter was prepared and committed to the mail, and he went off whistling his confidence in his grandma. In just a short time a letter came, saying:

“My dear Georgie: I have not forgotten my promise to you, of an album. I tried to get such a book as you desired, but could not get the sort you wanted; so I sent on to New York. It did not get here till after Christmas, and it was still not right, so I sent for another, and as it has not come as yet, I send you three dollars to get one in Chicago. Your loving grandma.”

As he read the letter, his face was the face of a victor. “Now, mamma, didn’t I tell you?” came from the depths of a heart that never doubted, that, “against hope, believed in hope” that the stamp album would come. While he was trusting, grandma was working, and in due season faith became sight.

It is so human to want sight when we step out on the promises of God, but our Savior said to Thomas, and to the long roll of doubters who have ever since followed him: “Blessed are they who have not seen, and yet have believed.”
–Mrs. Rounds

Classic Jesus People Music:February 17th, 2017

When I came to faith in 1976 I didn’t know what Christian music was. I’d heard a few hymns along the way but nothing like what was come to be known as “Jesus People Music.” This is the music I grew up with in the faith. I hope you enjoy the songs I have chosen from that era.  Allan

Song List

1.  Clean Before My Lord-  Honeytree

2. King Of Hearts-  Randy Stonehill

3.  Holy, Holy, Holy-  Maranatha Music

4.  Childish Things-  Sweet Comfort Band

5.  Jerusalem-  Gentle Faith

6.  Maybe-  Parable

7.  Shotgun Angel-  Daniel Amos

8.  What A Day-  Phil Keaggy

9.  Praise The Lord-  The Original Praise Album

10.  Sail On Sailor-  Mustard Seed Faith

11.  The Witness-  Denny Correll

12.  Reader’s Digest-  Larry Norman

13.  Morning comes when you call and The Son comes over the hill-  2nd Chapter Of Acts

14.  For Those Tears I Died-  Children Of The Day

15.  Sometimes Alleluia-  Chuck Girard

When Kids With Mental Illness Can’t Live At Home

Taken from  the Chicago Tribune  which is found   HERE.

Many of Christine Walker’s friends are just starting to help their teenage children plan to leave home, whether for a job, college or a gap year. But Walker’s 16-year-old son Schuyler has already lived away from his family for seven years, spending nearly half his life in residential treatment programs and schools for children with severe mental illness.

“When Schuyler was 7, that was when I had tried absolutely everything — every pill, every doctor, every diet, every therapy, everything — and we were still at a point when home was unsafe,” says Walker, who lives in Winnetka. “I realized then that everything we had been trying to do wasn’t enough.”

Walker and her husband knew that the only way to meet Schuyler’s needs and protect their two younger kids was to have their oldest child live elsewhere. However, it took two years to finally act on that decision.

“It’s a last resort, but we had to check into that resort, because we’d done everything else,” Walker recalls.

Although it is rarely talked about, the Walkers’ experience is not uncommon. In 2015, 271,000 children ages 12 to 17 received care for mental illness at a residential treatment facility. Half of all chronic mental illness begins by age 14, and 13 percent of American children ages 8 to 15 will experience a severe mental disorder, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness. More children in this country have a psychiatric disorder than have cancer, diabetes and AIDS combined, and for the most severely affected, residential treatment is the best way to ensure their safety and help them stay out of the juvenile justice system.

However, families that send their child to residential treatment programs often face judgment and misunderstanding. Mental illness, which is often treated as a taboo topic, is even more stigmatized in its youngest victims.

“If Schuyler had cancer, I would never think of myself as a failure if I didn’t do chemo in my living room,” says Walker, whose son is on the autism spectrum and has a mood disorder. “I would never think of myself as giving up. This is a brain disorder.”

Doctors are sometimes hesitant to diagnose psychiatric disorders in children, and school systems and law enforcement are ill-equipped to handle the needs of children who can be violent and unpredictable. Too often, these systems look to the parents to explain children’s behaviors.

“There is a theme that we hear often, that parents are to blame: They need parenting classes or need to learn how to handle their kids,” says Jennifer Zielinski, program coordinator for Idaho Parents Unlimited, an organization that assists parents of children with disabilities and mental illness. Zielinski has four children, and her third, who is 11, has been in residential treatment for two years. The move allowed Zielinski to shed the roles of nurse, medication manager and parole officer and focus on being her daughter’s mom.

Most importantly, residential treatment provides the structure and resources that children with mental illness need to thrive.

“Part of it is sad, but the gift that we gave Schuyler is being surrounded by adults who get him and think he’s an amazing kid and know (how to) offer empathy and de-escalate,” says Walker, executive director of The Chasing Hope Foundation (www.thechasinghopefoundation.com), whose mission is to establish therapeutic residences within school districts as an alternative to students relocating out of state. Her son attends Wediko School in Windsor, N.H.

Even when parents realize they are doing what is best for their child, the process is painful. Christianna Hale, of Texas, says that she felt guilty sending her then-12-year-old son to live outside the home, despite years of experience working in the mental health field.

“Even within the profession, there is a judgment that if your child is in residential treatment you must have failed, that you can’t be a good parent if he’s in residential treatment,” she says.

To maintain her connection to her son, Hale makes a six-hour round trip drive each Friday and Sunday so he can spend weekends at home. Research has shown that family involvement like this is essential to the child’s long-term success.

“You can see that groups that have a higher level of (family) involvement have better outcomes,” says Gary M. Blau, of the Child, Adolescent and Family Branch of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

Blau is also the director of Building Bridges, a national initiative aiming to increase family and community support in the treatment of children with mental illness. He says that while residential treatment is sometimes necessary, facilities must move past unproven practices that limit communication between children and parents, and toward community-based services that allow the child to remain at home or at least have regular, meaningful contact with their family.

“We need to show these family members that they are not alone, and that help and hope are out there for each and every one of them,” Blau says.

Hale’s son is currently transitioning to living at home, and she is hopeful that he will be able to stay under her roof. However, she avoids putting too much emphasis on returning home as the ultimate goal. For some children with mental illness, this is simply not possible, and Hale believes that those children need to feel that they are succeeding, as well. She says that she would accept her son returning to the residential school in the future if that were best for him.

“It’s about finding the place where he can be successful,” she says. “Him being successful and feeling successful is the most important thing.”

A Motown Love Song Extravaganza: February 14th, 2017

 

1.  What Does It Take (To Win Your Love)-  Jr. Walker & The All Stars

2.  Just My Imagination-  The Temptations

3.  Oh Girl-  The Chi-Lites

4.  If You Don’t Know Me By Now-  Harold Melvyn & The Blue Notes

5.  Three Times A Lady-  The Commodores

6.  Be My Baby-  The Ronettes

7.  Come See About Me-  The Supremes

8.  I’ll Be Around-  The Spinners

9.  My Cherie Amour-  Stevie Wonder

10.  I Second That Emotion-  Smokey Robinson & The Miracles

11.  Do You Love Me-  The Contours

12.  Cowboys To Girls-  The Intruders

13.  When A Man Loves A Woman-  Percy Sledge

14.  It Takes Two-  Marvin Gaye & Kim Weston

15.  Baby I Need Your Lovin’-  The Four Tops

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Excellent Overview Of Depression

Taken from  The National Institute Of Mental Health  Which is found   HERE.

Introduction

Do you feel sad, empty, and hopeless most of the day, nearly every day? Have you lost interest or pleasure in your hobbies or being with friends and family? Are you having trouble sleeping, eating, and functioning? If you have felt this way for at least 2 weeks, you may have depression, a serious but treatable mood disorder.

What is depression?

Everyone feels sad or low sometimes, but these feelings usually pass with a little time. Depression—also called “clinical depression” or a “depressive disorder”—is a mood disorder that causes distressing symptoms that affect how you feel, think, and handle daily activities, such as sleeping, eating, or working. To be diagnosed with depression, symptoms must be present most of the day, nearly every day for at least 2 weeks.

What are the different types of depression?

Two of the most common forms of depression are:

  • Major depression—having symptoms of depression most of the day, nearly every day for at least 2 weeks that interfere with your ability to work, sleep, study, eat, and enjoy life. An episode can occur only once in a person’s lifetime, but more often, a person has several episodes.
  • Persistent depressive disorder (dysthymia)having symptoms of depression that last for at least 2 years. A person diagnosed with this form of depression may have episodes of major depression along with periods of less severe symptoms.

Some forms of depression are slightly different, or they may develop under unique circumstances, such as:

  • Perinatal Depression: Women with perinatal depression experience full-blown major depression during pregnancy or after delivery (postpartum depression).
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD): SAD is a type of depression that comes and goes with the seasons, typically starting in the late fall and early winter and going away during the spring and summer.
  • Psychotic Depression: This type of depression occurs when a person has severe depression plus some form of psychosis, such as having disturbing false fixed beliefs (delusions) or hearing or seeing upsetting things that others cannot hear or see (hallucinations).

Other examples of depressive disorders include disruptive mood dysregulation disorder (diagnosed in children and adolescents) and premenstrual dysphoric disorder. Depression can also be one phase of bipolar disorder (formerly called manic-depression). But a person with bipolar disorder also experiences extreme high—euphoric or irritable —moods called “mania” or a less severe form called “hypomania.”

You can learn more about these disorders on the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)’s website (www.nimh.nih.gov).

What causes depression?

Scientists at NIMH and across the country are studying the causes of depression. Research suggests that a combination of genetic, biological, environmental, and psychological factors play a role in depression.

Depression can occur along with other serious illnesses, such as diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and Parkinson’s disease. Depression can make these conditions worse and vice versa. Sometimes medications taken for these illnesses may cause side effects that contribute to depression symptoms. For more information on ongoing research on depression, visit www.nimh.nih.gov.

What are the signs and symptoms of depression?

Sadness is only one small part of depression and some people with depression may not feel sadness at all. Different people have different symptoms. Some symptoms of depression include:

  • Persistent sad, anxious, or “empty” mood
  • Feelings of hopelessness or pessimism
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies or activities
  • Decreased energy, fatigue, or being “slowed down”
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions
  • Difficulty sleeping, early-morning awakening, or oversleeping
  • Appetite and/or weight changes
  • Thoughts of death or suicide or suicide attempts
  • Restlessness or irritability
  • Aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems without a clear physical cause and/or that do not ease even with treatment

Does depression look the same in everyone?

No. Depression affects different people in different ways. For example:

Women have depression more often than men. Biological, lifecycle, and hormonal factors that are unique to women may be linked to their higher depression rate. Women with depression typically have symptoms of sadness, worthlessness, and guilt.

Men with depression are more likely to be very tired, irritable, and sometimes angry. They may lose interest in work or activities they once enjoyed, have sleep problems, and behave recklessly, including the misuse of drugs or alcohol. Many men do not recognize their depression and fail to seek help.

Older adults with depression may have less obvious symptoms, or they may be less likely to admit to feelings of sadness or grief. They are also more likely to have medical conditions, such as heart disease, which may cause or contribute to depression.

Younger children with depression may pretend to be sick, refuse to go to school, cling to a parent, or worry that a parent may die.

Older children and teens with depression may get into trouble at school, sulk, and be irritable. Teens with depression may have symptoms of other disorders, such as anxiety, eating disorders, or substance abuse.

How is depression treated?

The first step in getting the right treatment is to visit a health care provider or mental health professional, such as a psychiatrist or psychologist. Your health care provider can do an exam, interview, and lab tests to rule out other health conditions that may have the same symptoms as depression. Once diagnosed, depression can be treated with medications, psychotherapy, or a combination of the two. If these treatments do not reduce symptoms, brain stimulation therapy may be another treatment option to explore.

Medications

Medications called antidepressants can work well to treat depression. They can take 2 to 4 weeks to work. Antidepressants can have side effects, but many side effects may lessen over time. Talk to your health care provider about any side effects that you have. Do not stop taking your antidepressant without first talking to your health care provider.

Please Note: Although antidepressants can be effective for many people, they may present serious risks to some, especially children, teens, and young adults. Antidepressants may cause some people, especially those who become agitated when they first start taking the medication and before it begins to work, to have suicidal thoughts or make suicide attempts. Anyone taking antidepressants should be monitored closely, especially when they first start taking them. For most people, though, the risks of untreated depression far outweigh those of antidepressant medications when they are used under a doctor’s careful supervision.

Information about medications changes frequently. Visit the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)  website for the latest warnings, patient medication guides, or newly approved medications.

Psychotherapy

Psychotherapy helps by teaching new ways of thinking and behaving, and changing habits that may be contributing to depression. Therapy can help you understand and work through difficult relationships or situations that may be causing your depression or making it worse.

Brain Stimulation Therapies

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) and other brain stimulation therapies may be an option for people with severe depression who do not respond to antidepressant medications. ECT is the best studied brain stimulation therapy and has the longest history of use. Other stimulation therapies discussed here are newer, and in some cases still experimental methods. For more information on these treatment options, visit www.nimh.nih.gov/health. To find clinical trials, visit www.clinicaltrials.gov .

How can I help myself if I am depressed?

As you continue treatment, you may start to feel better gradually. Remember that if you are taking an antidepressant, it may take 2 to 4 weeks to start working. Try to do things that you used to enjoy. Go easy on yourself. Other things that may help include:

  • Trying to be active and exercise
  • Breaking up large tasks into small ones, set priorities, and do what you can as you can
  • Spending time with other people and confide in a trusted friend or relative
  • Postponing important life decisions until you feel better. Discuss decisions with others who know you well
  • Avoiding self-medication with alcohol or with drugs not prescribed for you

How can I help myself if I am depressed?

As you continue treatment, gradually you will start to feel better. Remember that if you are taking an antidepressant, it may take several weeks for it to start working. Try to do things that you used to enjoy before you had depression. Go easy on yourself. Other things that may help include:

  • Breaking up large tasks into small ones, and doing what you can as you can. Try not to do too many things at once.
  • Spending time with other people and talking to a friend or relative about your feelings.
  • Once you have a treatment plan, try to stick to it. It will take time for treatment to work.
  • Do not make important life decisions until you feel better. Discuss decisions with others who know you well.

How can I help a loved one who is depressed?

If you know someone who has depression, first help him or her see a health care provider or mental health professional. You can also:

  • Offer support, understanding, patience, and encouragement
  • Never ignore comments about suicide, and report them to your loved one’s health care provider or therapist
  • Invite him or her out for walks, outings, and other activities
  • Help him or her adhere to the treatment plan, such as setting reminders to take prescribed medications
  • Help him or her by ensuring that he or she has transportation to therapy appointments
  • Remind him or her that, with time and treatment, the depression will lift

Where can I go for help?

If you are unsure where to go for help, ask your health provider or check out the NIMH Help for Mental Illnesses webpage at www.nimh.nih.gov/findhelp. Another Federal health agency, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), maintains an online Behavioral Health Treatment Services Locator at https://findtreatment.samhsa.gov/ . You can also check online for mental health professionals; contact your community health center, local mental health association, or insurance plan to find a mental health professional. Hospital doctors can help in an emergency.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, get help quickly.

  • Call your or your loved one’s health professional.
  • Call 911 for emergency services.
  • Go to the nearest hospital emergency room.
  • Call the toll-free, 24-hour hotline of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255); TYY: 1-800-799-4TTY (4889).

Streams In The Desert: February 11th, 2017

As soon as the soles of the feet of the priests… shall rest in the waters… the waters shall be cut off (Joshua 3:13).

The people were not to wait in their camps until the way was opened, they were to walk by faith. They were to break camp, pack up their goods, form in line to march, and move down to the very banks before the river would be opened.

If they had come down to the edge of the river and then had stopped for the stream to divide before they stepped into it, they would have waited in vain. They must take one step into the water before the river would be cut off.

We must learn to take God at His Word, and go straight on in duty, although we see no way in which we can go forward. The reason we are so often balked by difficulties is that we expect to see them removed before we try to pass through them.

If we would move straight on in faith, the path would be opened for us. We stand still, waiting for the obstacle to be removed, when we ought to go forward as if there were no obstacles.
–Evening Thoughts

What a lesson Columbus gave to the world of perseverance in the face of tremendous difficulties!

Behind him lay the gray Azores,
Behind the gates of Hercules;
Before him not the ghost of shores,
Before him only shoreless seas.
The good Mate said: “Now we must pray,
For lo! the very stars are gone.
Brave Admiral, speak, what shall I say?”
“Why, say, ‘Sail on! sail on! and on!'”
“My men grow mutinous day by day;
My men grow ghastly wan and weak!”
The stout Mate thought of home; a spray
Of salt wave washed his swarthy cheek.
“What shall I say, brave Admiral, say,
If we sight naught but seas at dawn?”
“Why, you shall say at break of day,
‘Sail on! sail on! sail on! and on!'”
They sailed. They sailed. Then spake the Mate:
“This mad sea shows its teeth tonight.
He curls his lip, he lies in wait,
With lifted teeth, as if to bite!
Brave Admiral, say but one good word;
What shall we do when hope is gone?”
The words leapt like a leaping sword:
“Sail on! sail on! sail on! and on!”
Then, pale and worn, he kept his deck
And peered through darkness. Ah! that night
Of all dark nights! And then a speck–
A light! A light! A light! A light!
It grew, a starlit flag unfurled!
It grew to be Time’s burst of dawn.
He gained a world; he gave that world

Its grandest lesson: “On! sail on!”
–Joaquin Miller

Faith that goes forward triumphs.