Sunday, November 16, 2014

Why Be a Critic When You Can Be An Intercessor

Tuesday mornings my husband meets with a group of pastors from all over Prince Edward Island. They gather to pray and support one another. The different churches gather once a month to pray for the island. This month the pastors thought they would gather for an entire day of prayer. They wanted to honor all those who intercede for them and the island. It was a great day.

All the pastors spoke and had encouraging words to share. My husband spoke about honoring the intercessor and the difference between an intercessor and a critic. They are different sides of the same coin. I was moved by it. It started me thinking and looking into myself to see which side the coin was facing up for me.

When you Google the word intercessor the definition is simple: a person who intervenes on behalf of another, especially by prayer.

When you Google the word critic the first definition that comes up: a person who expresses an unfavorable opinion of something. Synonyms: detractor, attacker, fault-finder.

A critic talks to others; while an intercessor talks to God about a person. A critic builds walls between people; while an intercessor builds bridges between people to God. A critic gets his reward from others; while an intercessor gets his reward from God. A critic lacks faith and trusts only in himself and his knowledge; while an intercessor has faith and trusts in God. A critic trusts in what he thinks he sees; while an intercessor trusts in what he can’t see. A critic gets power from others of like-mindedness and builds his case against another person; while an intercessor gets power from his relationship with God trusting that God is bigger and in control.

So my prayer for myself is this:
Lord help me to criticize less and pray more. Help me to build bridges and not walls, especially around myself. May I be someone who trusts in You more than I trust in myself. I pray that I love the people you place in my life and trust You for the rest.

© Nadine Zawacki 2014

Monday, January 06, 2014

Gotta Love YouTube


I’ve crocheted in the past but it was so long ago I forgot how. Back then I winged it as I went along with some basic stitches I learned from someone or someplace. I made some blankets for the kids and my hubby.

Fast forward to the present. A friend at church was making baby blankets for needy families and I thought that was an awesome idea. So she helped me get started on a blanket. We laughed more than I paid attention to anything. My blanket sides started to be wobbly. I should have paid closer attention. In need of help, I turned to YouTube. 

I love YouTube. Not only did I learn how to crochet a baby blanket but I’ve also made some booties. The blanket (pictured above) and booties (pictured below) are for one of my daughter’s friends who's expecting a baby. 
So if you need to learn how to do anything – hop over to YouTube and type in your “how to” question.

Nadine Zawacki © 2103 

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Congratulations to . . .

I want to thank all of you who participated in the book giveaway. Congratulations Jill B. for winner Lauren's two books. I know you will enjoy reading them. Thank you Lauren for giving away not one but two books.

Thursday, December 05, 2013

Book Giveaway

I’m delighted to know Lauren Stinton who is a freelance writer and editor with a degree in journalism from Evangel University in Springfield, Missouri. She edited my first book, Prisoner of Circumstance. She is an excellent editor who is honest, thorough, and extremely fun to work with. I couldn’t have finished the book without her.

Lauren also is a creative and imaginative writer hereself. Her first novel, The House of Elah started a journey.

The following is a description of The House of Elah:

Twin sons are born to the House of Elah.

According to the tenets of the country’s religion, one son is chosen for sacrifice. His death means blessing and honor for his father’s house.

The infant is sent to the temple to die. But the sacrifice never takes place—the son of Elah is stolen.

Years later, war makes him a slave, and in the midst of his despair, the god of death that claimed him at his birth comes to claim him again.

But wait . . . this book giveaway doesn’t include just her first novel but the second book of the series which is hot off the presses, The Alusian's Quest.

The following is a description of The Alusian's Quest:

When the Alusian put her hand to Marcus in Ausham, she changed his future in a moment. Hileshand can only watch as Marcus slips away from him, drawn by the fierce magic of a foreign god.

All Hileshand wants to do is protect his family, but this commitment carries a high price, especially when Boerak-El, the Alusian god of sorrow, has plans for Hileshand’s son Myles as well.

This book giveaway is open to US residents. All you have to do is leave a comment to enter a chance to win not one but both books. I will announce the winner next Thursday, December 12th.

Sounds exciting, I can’t wait to read it myself.


© Nadine Zawacki 2013

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Day 18

I’ve been juicing for the past 18 days. I’ve lost 23.4 lbs thus far. Has it been hard? Unbelievably hard! It’s a daily battle that some days I do well and others I would cut you for a piece of steak.

Several days ago I hit a wall. I couldn’t think of anything but food. It was on my mind every moment of the day. I thought I would go crazy. I found the more I thought about it the more I wanted it. If it weren’t for Tom (my hero) I would have crashed and burned. I needed help to make it through. Sometimes I just need to have Jesus with skin on (that’s what I call someone who loves me) to get me through a hard time.

I knew I was in trouble when I couldn’t wait for Sunday. Not because it was a day of worship but I couldn’t wait until communion so I could have a piece of bread. If that wasn’t bad enough I searched the basket for the biggest piece. I couldn’t wait for Tom to say, “You can partake of the elements.” Everything he said before that sounded like the teacher from Charlie Brown (waa waa, waa waa, waa). Can I go to hell for that? Nah.  

This experience confirmed what I already knew deep down – food controls me. I eat when I’m hungry, when I’m sad, when I'm happy, and whenever I’m awake. Of course I need to eat for health and well being, but I can’t use it as a way of escape. Instead I need to lean more on God. I need to learn balance. Food isn’t bad but the grip it has on me is.

The hardest part of being addicted to food is that I need to eat to sustain life. It’s not something I can stay away from. As we would say back in Brooklyn, "I need to make it my bitch" and not the other way around. I need to learn to enjoy it without letting it destroy me or control me from the inside out.

This cleanse has taught me so much. I feel better. My knees are starting to forgive me. I walk better. I have more energy. It’s given me a chance to reflect.

I watch Tom everyday get up, exercise and plow through the tough parts of the day. I’m encouraged by his progress and his willingness to be open about his struggles. He’s so determined that it helps me to be also.

One day at a time is my motto. I can do this. I can do it because I’m not alone on this journey. I feel all the love and support from the people around me. I’m grateful beyond words for Tom. I would have given up a long time ago if it wasn’t for his love and support. It helps to do this together.


© Nadine Zawacki 2013

Saturday, September 07, 2013

Day 8

It’s been a week since Tom & I started this adventure called Juicing. The first few days were tough. I found that I didn’t miss ice cream or potato chips but I would have killed for a nice piece of steak. The truth is that I feel better. I’ve lost fifteen pounds. I had lots of issues with swelling, especially in my legs. The swelling has gone down. These are all good things. You can’t really notice the weight loss but I know that will come also. When you’re this heavy it takes many pounds before a difference is seen on the inside. That’s okay because my insides are very happy with me right now.

There is this thinner, healthier woman in there and she’s screaming to come out. She wants to dance! She wants to run! She wants to live long enough to hold grandchildren in her arms. I’m afraid if I don’t let her soon she may never come out.

I started to walk this week. Funny thing about that is the first day I didn’t get very far. I walked about a block and a half and was sucking air from every pore of my body. My hip hurt. My back ached. My knees wanted to slap me. Tom was encouraging. He told me if I couldn’t walk any further he would walk back and get the car and drive me home. He’s my hero. But he didn’t need to put on his cape because I limped back to the house. The next day I went further and with less discomfort. On the third day I walked even further. It gets easier every time.

I found that after a week of juicing, I’ve developed a system. I still like to play with recipes and have come up with some that don’t taste like grass. I found that if I make all the juices for the day in the morning it only takes an hour (including clean up) and I’m done. I’ve gathered some tips that I found helpful.

Tips:
-If I clean my veggies when I buy them and store them in plastic bags or containers it saves time when I’m juicing. Example: kale & celery can be washed and left to dry on the counter, then stored.
-If I make my fruity drink first, then my carrot based drink and then the green drinks I only have to wash my juice machine once.
-If I store the drinks in  16 oz. (500 ml) mason jars it makes it easier to keep air out of the jar. Fresh juice keeps for a day or two if there isn't any air in the jar.

Some people have done juiced for as little as three days up to sixty days. I’m not sure when we’ll stop but one day at a time is my new motto.


© Nadine Zawacki 2013

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

Juicing

There’s this gal at our church who started a juice program. She looks great.  I was inspired, but deep down I’m thought to myself I like food. I like eating.

I’ve tried to lose weight before in my lifetime and I was very successful. Ready for the big butt (pun intended) – I couldn’t maintain it. Why? Various reasons but mostly because I couldn’t change the way I ate in the long run. It was hard to eat healthy when you don’t live alone. I’m not that strong.

Tom wanted to do this juice thing. He was inspired too. He wanted to feel better. Our friend recommended we watch, Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead. I added it to my list on Netflix to watch, but didn’t watch it.

 We watched the documentary recently. It was good and it inspired us. We invested in a Breville juicer. It’s very good by the way. It’s super fast and it juices well.

Tom’s very brave and posted his weight on Facebook (daily). I have not. It’s only day four of this new journey but I’m encouraged. Tom’s motivated. He’s inspired me to hang in there. He has lost 10.2 pounds and I’ve lost 9.5. Then he did the craziest thing and purchased a used elliptical trainer. Hmmm. Now we must add exercise. I think he’s secretly trying to kill me.

I’m not brave enough to share my starting weight but let’s just say I need to lose about the size of a very tall healthy freshman in high school. I took a before picture, but I still look like that picture to post it. Maybe when I’m halfway towards my goal I’ll share.

For now I’ve started a journey to better my health. I want my knees to not revolt against me for making them work so hard. I want to shop in the normal section of the store and not in the Plus size which is just a polite term. Omar the Tent Maker is more accurate.

I’m determined to reach my goal. I know that I’ll get there because I’m not walking alone; I have Tom on this journey with me.


© Nadine Zawacki 2013