Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Little Red Book

 I will have a positive outlook on life today, an attitude that will allow me to experience joy and move me on a path of acceptance, love and freedom. I have the power to change the way I think. I can choose to change my attitudes, and this is what gives ne freedom. ~ Daily Affirmations for Adult Children of Alcoholics, Health Communications, Inc., 1985

If you have been following me on Facebook, then you may be aware that I am in the midst of a major crisis and have been for a week. To end the crisis, I need the support and guidance of lots of people. I also need to locate some documents from several years ago – one documents that I received and another documents that I sent. 

Again, as I’m sure you must be aware, I am not a neat freak. I have boxes and boxes of stuff, primarily stored in my spare bedroom.

Last week I went through about fifteen boxes, throwing away seven 30-gallon garbage bags of stuff that I need not have saved. As I went through those boxes, I became more and more exasperated at not finding the documents. I even began tottering on the edge of sever depression, as anxiety began to drive my actions.

Saturday, July 17th, I awakened long before dawn, having slept less than three hours. I was a wreck. Still, I began going through more boxes. In one I found a book, Daily Affirmations for Adult Children of Alcoholics, that I had not seen in years. There was a page marker in it; when I opened the book to that page, I was astounded to discover that the daily reading was for July17th! It seems to me that many years ago I had stopped reading on the previous page and now I was taking up from where I had stopped.

The quotation above is the beginning of the July 17th reading. As exhausted and down as I was, to took time to read that entry and then to meditate on it. I changed my attitude. I sought the positives in this crisis. And I decided to postpone my anxiety-driven search and allow myself a weekend of rest and re-creation.

I did. It worked. Today I have continued the process of seeking the documents as well as making contacts to obtain guidance in dealing with it. I have also discovered benefits from my search. For example, besides finding the Daily Affirmations book, I also located a ring that I purchased in (I think) New Mexico quite a few years ago.

I also located the activation codes for Microsoft Office, Paperport, and Corel Video Studio, expensive (for me) programs that I have not be able to use since my computer crashed several years ago because I couldn’t find the activation codes.  I can now use all three.

There is one more benefit to the crisis and my “cleaning out” the boxes of stuff. I need to move soon, to a much smaller place. A few weeks ago I began receiving the services of a financial adviser who works with the agency that provides my primary home health care. After looking at my finances, he pointed out that the guideline for housing costs is 30% of one’s income. For the past several years I have been expending 68 – 75% of my income, depending on heating costs. Therefore I am seeking a place to live that is with that 30% guideline.

Obviously, those seven 30-gallon garbage bags of stuff will not have to be moved to my new home (wherever that may be). As I continue to go through the boxes still in my spare bedroom, finding all sorts of treasures (including, I pray, the two documents that I am seeking), I shall fill and dispose of more bags of refuse.

One final thought, throughout most of my life I have lived by the belief that God provides what I need. It is when, as I did last week, I depend solely on myself becoming anxious and depressed that bad things happen to me. It is when I let go of the anxiety and depression that good (God) things happen.\

I share the blessings that I am receiving with you, my friends.


  1. Oh, Nick. What a wonderful story.

    I'm glad that you found that book. Maybe the biggest point to your search was to find that book and to be reminded of the joy that is in every moment.

    I also hope that you find the paperwork that you need.

    Your post reminds me of one of Thomas' recent posts:

  2. I think you really turned your day around. Your post was most inspiring today. I hope you find the papers you need.

    Many blessings to you.

  3. Nick, I literally feel for the process and the pain. I tend to be fairly organized in most things, but I am terrible about filing papers, and it leads to exasperation at tax time. At times, I'm reduced to tears as I search for "stuff."

    At those times, if I can slow myself down enough to "let go and let God," it is such a relief. Things begin to fall into my hands and I wonder why I didn't let go sooner!

    I hope you find all you are needing and can move on to the next task. There is always that "next task," isn't there??? Downsizing isn't easy, but I have to say, it is freeing to get rid of the bags and bags of things saved and not needed. Perhaps for you and me, it is the only method of finding the important things! Hugs, my friend.

  4. Wonderful story, Pastor Nick. I hope that all goes well with you and Mr. Alex.

  5. I'm sorry you are in crisis, nick and Simi and I are thinking of you. It was meant to be that you found that page!

  6. Back in college I took a class on Jewish mysticism taught by a wonderful Rabbi, I learned quite a bit from him in that one semester and one of the things I remember was him advising a student to meditate on a problem before bed, often times God will help you find a solution via your dreams. It's worth a shot, perhaps God will "lead" you to the documents in a dream.

  7. What a lovely post, nick. I'm glad that God answered your prayers so speedily and effectively and I know that soon you will find the documents that you seek.

  8. Thanks I needed this post as I too have suffered as you. Breath In and Breath out and leave it in God's hands. Thanks again and you will find what you are looking for at a most unexpected time. Peace

  9. Excellent words, Rev. Saint. I pray that God will bless you and your search as you have blessed so many others.