Strongholds- finally, the how, why, and how to overcome them.

We are either FOR or AGAINST God. You cannot pick and choose your obediences.

WARNING: this is a heavy blog. I don’t want you to hurt your brain. Only 3% of people will “get” it, and have a revelation about their own lives with these deep thoughts.

This principle is a big deal for me. I believe that it’s vital to grasp and act on this revelation in order to move forward in my spiritual growth.

There has never been another time where “new” Ideas are exalted to the point where they have come against the knowledge of God with such openness and force as there is in our day and age. Just because it’s been demonstrated to us, and it seems to be the way it’s done, Does not make it okay.

Many people are vehemently opposed to the “old” biblically based truths that their hearts have been hardened. They twist the scriptures to say what they want it to say. They won’t hear the truth of it.
And slewfoot is wringing his hands in glee!! Goes around saying “gotcha” “gotcha” “gotcha” to all the (unaware) well meaning “christians” and they continue to live a defeated life without even knowing it.
Thinking deeply today about strongholds and how they are affecting me and my family. I believe that strongholds begin when you are a child, as you watch others, and fight to use manipulation to get what you want. And it gets stronger as you grow, till you think nothing if it, yet you think you’re following Christ and openly confess His Name.

Strongholds are thought patterns that yield to spiritual reality.

Real life recent example….
Recently (12/17/16) we went to a graduation… the invitation clearly stated there was to be no food or drink brought into the arena. Yet, I brought nuts. A seemingly innocent thing, but I had two of my grandchildren with me. I even got the others in our party to disobey the rule by getting them to sneak some of the bags of nuts in their pockets. I was convicted and felt a strong sense of remorse as we entered the arena, and wanted to say something to the others in defense of my disobedience. But I knew it was too late (at the time).
We have a tendency to look at rules, and figure out how we can get around them and do what we want anyway. Not realizing that we are disobeying the “laws of the universe”. It’s the intrinsic obedience that is what’s important NOT seeing how clever you are to do what you please anyway.

(I know there needs to be a crucial conversation with those young minds to tell them about my repentance and explain my theory on strongholds.)
I have now come to understand that you are either for or against.

The mind is either “renewed” or is at war with God. Simple as that.

He is going to set up His kingdom with renewed minds. Not with those who are at war with Him.
See, strongholds begin with manipulation and control. It’s the grasping for control outside of the divine order. THATS where it starts.
Proverbs 21:22
“One who is wise can go up against the city of the mighty and pull down the stronghold in which they trust.”

This is the verse that got me thinking about strongholds.
Strongholds are thought patterns that evolve into what we trust.
So Strongholds are things that people trust in other than God. It’s MISPLACED trust.

Strongholds are thought patterns that yield to what we should be trusting in, which is spiritual reality and truths.

Strongholds are developed through thought patterns that evolve from manipulation and needing to be in control.

When patterns develop outside of Gods reign, those patterns eventually become strongholds.

If there is a stronghold in your life, then it means your spiritual wall of protection around your heart and mind has been compromised. The way to REBUILD THE WALL is to
Develop Godly thought patterns that will build that wall back up!

We have to seek to Live in A place of safety and protection though GOD-birthed God thought patterns !
Some of the things that happen in our lives are because of perverted or misguided ways of thinking: misplaced thought patterns.

We give place to unseen realities in our thoughts. And these feed off of what we hold in our hearts and minds as important to us. Be careful to strive for purity and obedience.

If I am striving to set my face as flint towards my Lord and Savior, and “renew my mind”, these frivolous and seemingly unimportant disobediences have to stop. Because it’s the principle behind that disobedience that is causing me to “war against” that which we are striving to accomplish. REframing concepts, habits and intentions is another way to put it.

We are either FOR or AGAINST God. You cannot pick and choose your obediences.

Galatians 5 mentions witchcraft as a sin of the flesh.

Scriptures that back up these thoughts.

1 cor 10
Mark 8
Ephesians 6


The last word on conquering LIMITING BELIEFS. Part III of 3


When limiting belief speaks:

* I will keep you slave to your perpetually time-wasting, guilt-inducing, relationship-sabotaging, self-hate talking habits. Because habits are either your cruelest master, or your best servant. (I don’t want you to know that!)

* I will keep your family dysfunctional with your co-dependant relationships in the hopes that you’ll keep going to bed at night with your tissue box after too many grossly dissatisfyingly bad days … Having been told (in other words)… You’re a useless failure and a disappointment, and all the good things you do, do not make up for your mistakes and poor choices you’ve made. (This could come from family members, friends or coworkers…  It’s Graceless. And leads to debilitating self-hate, Very poor self talk that perpetuates itself.)

* I will keep you blind to the fact that if you keep doing the same thing over and over the same way, you CAN keep expecting different results.

* I will keep you thinking that you are great, because of your erroneous belief that if you continually find the shortcomings of others, and point them out to other people by “Putting others down”. That makes others think what a good person YOU are.

* I want you to hang on to your loser mentality with all the “lofty plans” you have for your life (which are never going to happen he he), Because I don’t want you to know that if you give that up, there’s a better future that is waiting for you!!!

* I keep you thinking what a bad person you are deep down, so that your lack of self-love makes you keep your distance from others … Making you believe that no one could love you. In fact I don’t want you to love you. Or to even LET someone love you.

  • I want you to keep believing what your grandparents and your parents may have believed that all you have to do is “get good grades, go to college and get a degree, get a good job, and you’re set for life. (I don’t want you to realize that the J. O. B. Gives you poor returns; no time, energy and patience for your family; that it’s Industrial Age thinking in a Digital Age Era; that Corporate Business WILL FAIL YOUR FUTURE!!)

And on that note, I want you to continue your strong belief that your J. O. B. is going to get you your dreams for your future. (I don’t want you to discover yet that the 401K will turn into the 301K and then into the 201K and then it will not be okay!)

This list could go on and on and on! And please feel free to add any other wonderful possible “limiting beliefs” I may have missed….


There are so  MANY MANY good “reframing” verses, notes, cards I’ve written to myself and quotes I’ve memorized, I could offer them all here but I believe this about sums it up…

“[ Wake Up from Your Sleep ] Watch what God does (and says), and then you do it, like children who learn proper behavior from their parents. Mostly what God does is love you. Keep company with Him and learn His way: a life of love. Observe how Christ loved us. His love was not cautious but extravagant. He didn’t love in order to get something from us but to give everything of Himself to us. Love (and live) like that.” Ephesians 5:1-2 MSG


Again I could list endless quotes from personal experiences, books and CDs that inspired this blog… But this about sums it up….

“The only thing limiting your results in life is your own thinking.” Orrin Woodward, in reference to His talk about “The Ant and the Elephant”.

(One of my other favorite authors Chris Brady calls it STINKING THINKING!)

Last word: “The fact that my God makes good come out of my wrong does not make my wrong any better; I have simply utilised God’s permissive will to go in a circle when I should have gone straight.” –Oswald Chambers

Hello, my name is LIMITING BELIEF! Part II

PART II of 3.

My name is limiting belief. Please don’t read this if you’re happy in your subserviency to your personal failures. If you are disappointed in yourself and constantly have negative self-talk, and don’t mind. DO NOT READ!

Hello, I am your limiting belief…

  • I will keep you living in the past with it’s mistakes and bad choices, so as to stop you from seeing the bright new future ahead if you. (I don’t want you to discover that if you just repent, forgive and “move on” with a strong resolve to be a better self, I’ll lose you.)
  • I am going to make sure that your stinking thinking will get in the way of anything that gives you hope, or puts you on a path to success.
  • I am going to head off your feeble efforts to read the books that will help you because the vision and strength you will find there will put a damper on your tendency to think that here and now is all there is.
  • I’m here to keep you believing that you are better than your neighbor because you have a bigger SUV, never mind about the large monthly payment that keeps you enslaved to the J.O.B! (Just Over Broke)
  • I’m going to make sure you keep thinking that you care about your FICO score, even though – if ever you reach your goals, and eventually pay cash for everything no one cares about the score.
  • I will keep you from going that one extra mile, because that’s the test of the mettle that will help you finally succeed.
  • I will keep you unaware that the things you disapprove of in others, are the very things that you do yourself. ( BIG ONE that will hold you back from success with people.)
  • I’m going to stop you from discovering that “wherever you go, there you are”.  (THAT’s the reason everyone  else is “so messed up”!) Deep one. Takes a lot of thought to get this one.
  • I will never let you discover that the key to knowing how to get somewhere, is knowing where you’re going. And why.
  • I will keep you making lists, because in doing so you will never accomplish anything on them.
  • I will keep you from going for first base, because if you reach second or third base you’ll discover the satisfaction of trying. Which will cause you to move on to other areas in which you could have successes.
  • I will make sure you keep thinking your own thoughts so that your results in life will be limited. I really don’t want you to “get” this: Insanity: doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.
  • I’ll make sure you are pre-occupied with accumulating wealth, because then you’ll never discover that it’s not the key to becoming wealthy.
  • I’ll make it a point to give you a staggering array of justifications, excuses and rationalizations to keep your belief in check.
  • I’ll keep you thinking and saying “I’ve always done it this way”, then you’ll never discover the wide array of easier and better ways to the same end.
  • I’ll throw many challenges, obstacles and less-than-perfect conditions at you so that you will continue waiting for everything and everyone to be “just right” or “Perfect”, that way you’ll never discover that with each uncomfortable step you take , the stronger you would grow, the more skilled, the more self-confident and ultimately the more successful. (A BIG Part of this is allowing your spouse or “friends” to hold you back with all their baggage, limiting belief, busyness and fear!) PLEASE WAIT FOR PERFECT!! 
  • I will keep you looking to the people around you for your validation, self-control and happiness, and not to your own heart, and your relationship to your creator – as it should be.
  • I will keep you thinking “I DONT HAVE TIME”! So you’ll never get past “the two knobs” (the door knob and tv knob) and Do ANYTHING to get the future that is waiting for you!!!!

Add your own compilation of YOUR limiting belief in the comments please… For the last in the series…. go to PART III of 3


Limiting beliefs – lets conquer them!


As we live out the last days of 2016, i invite you to join me in evaluation mode. We tend to look at our lives…. what we’ve done, where we’ve come, what we’ve accomplished, and where we are going in the future. I love this time of year between Christmas and new year, it’s a great time to reflect. To look back at the promises I made to myself and see which ones ‘stuck’. It’s the ones that didn’t stick that grieve me, because if they had, I would be in a different place right now.

Over this past year I have been writing down some of my obstacles, in the form of a series of challenges for myself and for my friends with whom I have been having the “great conversation”. This conversation is about shortcomings in our lives and how to motivate ourselves to overcome them.

For the next few days I will be sharing some of the challenges I find re holding me back. I’m going to write them from the ‘failure’ perspective… Let’s see if it pushes any buttons and flips any switches in our brains….

While searching for my lists in my notes, I came across this. When Olivia was about two, I recorded memorable moments…. this one is so applicable here.

Olivia “tied” Tia to a branch in the Christmas tree using her leash. The poor dog complied. She sat there for a long long time, patiently watching and waiting to be ‘untied’. Eventually I had to go over there and move her, because she could have just walked away and the leash would have unw

ound itself, and she would have been free. Reminds me of a great life’s principle:

The circus elephants were standing behind the tents. The circus director had given Tommy and his grandfather permission to go see them. Tommy was so impressed his grandfather knew a circus director. He was sure there would be plenty of good stories in store about grandfather´s youth when they got back home.

Grandfather was holding Tommy´s hand in his when they saw the circus elephants for the first time. Tommy was very happy about it – he had never imagined the elephants would be so enormous!

There were five of them, all eating hay. Tommy looked at them, mesmerized by their size and the elegant movement of the trunks. An older man was carrying more hay to them and smiled at the old gentleman and the little boy.

“Want to come closer?” he asked and smiled at Tommy, winking his eye to grandfather – they seemed to know each other too

Tommy couldn´t get a word out of his mouth. He looked up at his grandfather who smiled back.

“Do you want to?” Grandfather asked.

Tommy just nodded.

“Can we give them treats?” Grandfather asked the man.

“Maybe not – if you only give one elephant something good to eat, the others want to have some too. Might be a bit scary for a small boy to be surrounded by five elephants…”

“Of course. Come, Tommy!”

Tommy followed grandfather to the nearest circus elephant. Grandfather patted the huge animal – it kept on eating. Tommy gathered all his courage and reached out his hand. Shyly he stroked the thick, wrinkled skin. He looked up and saw the elephant looking at him.

The other circus elephants kept on munching their hay, but the one Tommy had touched reached out his trunk and gently stroked the boy´s hair, as if smelling him. It was an amazingly light touch. Tommy´s face lit up and he couldn´t help but smile.

The men laughed and Tommy relaxed into stroking the trunk. Then his eyes caught sight of the rope that was tied around the hind leg of the animal, keeping it in place.

“Couldn´t he escape? The rope is so thin…” Tommy said and pointed.

The elephant man smiled.

“He sure could! All these elephants could break their ropes any time.”

“Why don´t they?” Tommy wanted to know. In his imagination he already saw five elephants running through the tents, through the fair ground. He could vividly imagine ladies with parasols fainting, children screaming, lemonade sellers running for their lives, clowns scattering to all directions…

“Well – when they are young, they are tied down with similar rope,” the man said, “Only the rope is tied so well they cannot break it. They try, but they can´t snap it or pull it loose. And so they learn the rope keeps them in place. And when they grow older, they keep on believing it and don´t even try to escape anymore.”


Little Tommy looked at the huge circus elephants in disbelief.

“And that, little man, is a good lesson for life,” the elephant man said, “It is just as easy to make a man believe in his own powerlessness. If someone makes you believe you are powerless to change things, and they do it so well that you really do believe their words, you keep on believing them. If you do that, you sabotage your own life by not even trying to reach for better things. And only because you never question what someone in the past made you believe.”

Tommy looked at the man and then up to his grandfather. Grandfather nodded.

“That is true, Tommy. So when ever you meet a person in your life who tries to make you believe you are not valuable or that you can´t do something, remember these circus elephants. Don´t believe when others belittle our abilities. They cannot know the great things you could do in life – only you can.”

“So when mommy says I should not climb to the apple tree in the back yard she is wrong?”

The men laughed out loud.

“No, Tommy. When you are young, listen to your parents because they know what might be dangerous to you. They advice you out of love. But you will meet people who would like nothing more than to drag you down when they see you could do great things. They can be children, they can be adults.”


“Because they have that invisible rope around their ankle. They don´t try new things because of it. And when they see someone who does – deep inside they know they could do it too. But snapping that old rope is not easy, and it may even hurt because they have built their lives believing in their limitations. Old habits die hard… And so they try to stop you from trying to make your life better because it makes them feel uncomfortable. If they succeed in stopping you, they feel better again. But you will feel lousy.”

The elephant man patted the circus elephant.

“And if you feel lousy, you know you have acted against your heart. When that happens, stop and think if you shouldn´t follow your own path anyway.”

The circus elephant affectionately wrapped his trunk around the elephant man.

“I followed my heart,” the man said, “Even though all my friends said joining a circus would lead me only in trouble.”

“Did it?” Tommy asked.

“Well – if you say owning your own circus is trouble, I guess they were right,” the man laughed.

“You own this whole circus?” Tommy’s eyes were the size of saucers.

“I do. And I love owning it. Only because I listened to my own heart and not others, I have had such an adventure filled life. And lots of fun too!”

Tommy watched the circus elephants quietly for a while, all standing there with a rope around the ankle. Great giants who could have walked away from the circus any time, but didn´t because they believed they couldn´t.

“Time to go, Tommy. Dinner is waiting,” grandfather said.

They walked away, hand in hand, turning to wave at the elephant man before disappearing behind one of the tents, little Tommy deep in his thoughts.

Have you ever stopped to review your old habits?

Lets look at some of our habits, in the form of limiting beliefs, and how destructive they can be to our progress and success. (Go to part II)

What are my TRUE intentions?

It all comes down to your TRUE intentions.

Sometimes when we pray, pray for something really serious, and difficult…. He doesn’t answer in the positive… (in our minds it’s not the positive). But in fact, if it’s HIS WILL, it IS the positive – no matter what the answer. For we do not see the unseen, He sees ALL things…. no matter what the answer… it’s the positive.

When we come to the point where we have the capacity to believe that… THEN we are on the right path.
Choose to believe the right thing!

“Not all who sound religious are really godly people. They may refer to me as ‘Lord,’ but still won’t get to heaven. For the decisive question is whether they obey my Father in heaven. 22 At the Judgment[d] many will tell me, ‘Lord, Lord, we told others about you and used your name to cast out demons and to do many other great miracles.’ 23 But I will reply, ‘You have never been mine.[e] Go away, for your deeds are evil.’
Matthew 17:21-23

Lord, Clean my intentions. Amen.

Dear Lord.. remind me…

Thought I’d share this little personal struggle here so I can come back to it and be reminded of my strong resolve.

Choosing a gentle reply doesn’t mean you’re weak; it actually means you possess a rare and Godly strength.
“A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” Proverbs 15:1

It’s the difference between a ‘knee jerk’ reaction and a reply.
Knee jerk reaction is typically a harsh words used to prove how wrong the other person is. NO GOOD EVER COMES FROM THIS!!

I need a preplanned template to keep me from spewing.

1. Begin by honoring the one offended. Not the words spoken or written, but the PERSON. FIND SOMETHING good to say first… then give your well thought out, kind and sensitive reply.
2. Keep your response short and full of grace. The wordier, the riskier. Clarify your response wrapped in grace. STICK TO THE ISSUE AT HAND… not history. And thank them for understanding and extending you grace in the situation.
3. End by extending compassion. Hurting people often hurt people. Sometimes, harsh words, texts or emails are better left unanswered… it may be they person just needed to vent. As I often tell my children: Don’t make their problem yours.

Remember: Honor, Grace Compassion.

Dear Lord, I commit to the challenge of holding my tongue in order to honor, give grace, and have compassion for others. Please give me the strength to do this today.
(And when something really angers me, please help me understand why and deal with it in MY HEART!)

*Credit goes to Lisa TerKeusts “Unglued”.

Happy Birthday Daddy!

Durban beach Holiday 1959ish

Durban beach Holiday 1959ish

My Dad. Henry Edward Schultz. (Otherwise known as Harry) It’s his birthday. He would have been 93 today. Happy Birthday Daddy. I could not wish for a better father. He is my hero. Pulled himself up from poverty to success even though he had some serious limitations. We always joked about how he couldn’t spell. He loved crossword puzzles and often had some problems because he would find a word that fit… but it wasn’t spelt correctly… it was our inside joke … he played along and did it for some fun.

My Dad - 1981ishHe had a great sense of humor. He LOVED telling stories of his youth and LOVED learning new things. He was very passive, tolerant and gentle, but when his morals and values were questioned or threatened to be compromised he stood up like a giant and fought for right.

My personal favorite memory (and I think of it often) is being gently held down in church on his lap, with his two fingers over my eyes holding them closed so I would go to sleep and stop my distracting nonsense.
This is a “minds eye” picture of my heavenly Father and His love for me. We are so often distracted by the world and we forget where and who we are … * Father ‘holds me down’, and i know i am in his eyes watching me*. The best thing is Father knows what’s best for me and makes me remember that with this picture. We often think that we know what we want and need, but He knows best and if we allow it, if we are teachable and willing, He will help us to “get back on track”.

I love you Daddy. I miss you down to the deepest part of my being.
I know you are singing in heaven today.

*Adapted from a song by Michelle Tumes:
(I believe it’s because of my earthly dad that I can say this song speaks exactly of who I am….)

Durban beach Holiday 1959ish

Durban beach Holiday 1959ish

– Michelle Tumes

when i wake
when i sleep
by your whispers that seek to reach me
my Constant One

when i dance
when i leap
where i run
You are with me

everyday every night
after death in this life
You are constantly keeping
in my joy
in my strife
when i taste my desires
i am caught in Your eyes holding me
my Constant One

when i feast on Your words that You speak
they will feed my hunger
my Constant One

where i lay
when i rest
i will say that i love you

everyday every night
after death in this life
You are constantly keeping
in my joy in my strife
when i taste my desires
i am caught in your eyes holding me
my Constant one

i wanna kiss the mouth that soothes me
when the smile has vanished from my face
when I sparkle in the mist that clouds me
be sure that I am lost in You
lost without a trace
my Constant One

lost without a trace
my constant One

On this, my birthday… deep thoughts and promises to myself.

Thank you Lord for your Love and Mercy that brings me to another day that indelibly marks your blessing on my life. I receive it. Thank You for the broken chains that I see in the ashes around me, because of Your great love and kindness. You know before I even know, what my life needs.
“So this is my prayer: that your love will flourish and that you will not only love much but well. Learn to love appropriately. You need to use your head and test your feelings so that your love is sincere and intelligent, not sentimental gush. Live a lover’s life, circumspect and exemplary, a life Jesus will be proud of: BOUNTIFUL IN FRUITS FROM THE SOUL, making Jesus Christ attractive to all, getting everyone involved in the glory and praise of God.” Philippians 1:9-10 The Message.
Mmmm “bountiful in fruits from the soul”. Deep thoughts.

You cannot be satisfied with loving others until you are satisfied with loving yourself; who you are, and happy/satisfied with that. We’re often times self loathing because we have let ourselves down in some form or another. We have a mental picture of how we want ourselves to look and be. When we have those momentary glimpses of who we really have become, sometimes in character and sometimes in physique. We realize that we have let ourselves go, allowed ourself to “give in” even though we know what’s good for us. And we become depressed and hopeless. Thinking we have no control over it.
That feeling of dissatisfaction bleeds onto others… And sometimes it’s not pretty.
The thing is : WE DO HAVE THE POWER TO CHANGE IT. All it takes is the realization of that, and a strong resolve to love yourself enough to hold to your wisdom; the self-control you know you need to commit to, that will give you “the fruits of the soul” that you long for in yourself.

Establish what is appropriate, sincere and intelligent; make the decision to live like that in public AND in private. Simple as that! (If someone spoke to us like we often speak to ourselves, we would avoid them at all costs.) So take yourself in hand, and turn the negatives into positives… Be true to yourself.

I resolve to live my life circumspectly: (deliberate and guarded), and exemplary: (admirable, blameless, with character, honorable); a life Jesus will be proud of.

My heart cry is that my children KNOW YOU IN THIS WAY.

* I am worthy of the best, worthy of being satisfied that I do have personal integrity that, when I “catch a glimpse of myself”, I am satisfied that I’ve been true to myself.

(This deep moment was inspired by:
1) … the instructors in Bikram Yoga who often say: “Be honest with yourself, you’re the only one who will know.”
2) … Orrin Woodward in a LLR cd, in explaining personal integrity, said “Fitness Is a byproduct of personal integrity.” I have claimed that as my lives mantra… Success, in everything, is a byproduct of personal integrity!
3) … the words that are spoken of me when I get up to speak in a meeting.
4) … My Lord, who loves me unconditionally. There’s nothing I can do to make Him love me more. There’s nothing I can do to make Him love me less.

Click on this link to be fully blessed by an incredibly loving Father who’s shown me grace, loving kindness, redemption and broken my chains….

Our Children Are Going to a Time and Place that We Will Never See? (What are we Sending ?)

(This was written on 4/30/14)

When I was a child, we would play a variation of ‘hide-and-seek’. There would be a ’sentinel’ appointed at ‘base’ to “HOLD THE KEEP”. They guarded the ‘base’ so no one could come and seek refuge there, because if you ‘blocked yourself’ on base, you ‘won’ and could not be captured. 

Does your child know their responsibility to “HOLD THE KEEP”? Teach your children to stand in DEFENSE of the FUTURE that we will never see.

I had the privilege of hearing an amazing speaker and business partner, Lupe Gamez speak at a business meeting.
Of the many meaningful and motivational things he said, this is what I have not been able to get out of my mind:

“Your children. They’re going to a time that you will never see.

What message are you sending with them?”

This gripped my heart.


Then, this morning, I was listening to something and this word jumped out and set up camp in my mind.

I looked it up in the dictionary…





a person or thing that watches or stands as if watching.

a soldier stationed as a guard to challenge all comers and prevent a surprise attack: to stand sentinel.

to watch over or guard as a sentinel.

verb (used with object), sen·ti·neled, sen·ti·nel·ing or especially British sen·ti·nelled,sen·ti·nel·ling

sen·ti·nel·like, adjective
sen·ti·nel·ship, noun
un·sen·ti·neled, adjective
un·sen·ti·nelled, adjective
1570–80;  < Middle French sentinelle  < Italian sentinella,  derivative of Old Italian sentina  vigilance ( Latin sentīre to observe) + -īna -ine2 )

1, 2. sentry, guard, watch, lookout. Unabridged
I got very emotional as I read the Definition of this word.
When I first heard Lupe say:

“Your children. They’re going to a time that you will never see. What message are you sending with them?”

I immediately thought of the way we parent our children, relate to them, discipline them, transfer our morals and values; and (with all I am learning lately) I was thinking “in regards to their self-talk”. So my first thought was a personal and self-image kind of “message”. 
But then this morning I heard that word “sentinel”. It was like a bullet that pierced my heart. Tears flowed as I realized how we have failed. We as a people have failed to convey to our children the importance of “standing guard”, as a soldier against that which would come against our freedoms, our beliefs and our futures! And “to prevent a surprise attack”, wow, this reminded me of a quote by Edmund Burke: 

“The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil is that Good Men Do Nothing.”

I feel that we have fallen into, or been lulled into, a complacency. WHERE HAVE ALL THE SENTINELS GONE?? If there aren’t any Sentinels today…. There will be non tomorrow.
I have a challenge for parents. Don’t allow media to influence and mold the moral values and virtues of your children! This is a deep subject, and I welcome any and all comments and opinions. Lets band together and vow to “hold the keep”. 
When I was a child, we would play a variation of ‘hide-and-seek’. There would be a ’sentinel’ appointed at ‘base’ to “HOLD THE KEEP”. They guarded the ‘base’ so no one could come and seek refuge there, because if you ‘blocked yourself’ on base, you ‘won’ and could not be captured. 
KEEP (from the Middle English kype) is a type of fortified tower built within castles during the Middle Ages by Europeannobility. They were usually considered as fortified residences, used as a refuge of last resort should the rest of the castle fall to an adversary.  There is a vast and interesting history, but suffice to say, the stone KEEPS during the 10th and 11th centuries were built with a round, square or rectangular design, made with Stone, and could take up to a decade to build.


They carried considerable political as well as military importance, and the younger generation were taught how to seek refuge there, and given explicit instruction and were very well educated on the culture, beliefs and moral standard of the country/kingdom, were all the leaders and rulers be killed. They held the future in their hands.
Are you teaching your children to ‘HOLD THE KEEP’ for coming generations?
Deuteronomy 11:18-21 “Place these words on your hearts. Get them deep inside you. Tie them on your hands and foreheads as a reminder. Teach them to your children. Talk about them wherever you are, sitting at home or walking in the street; talk about them from the time you get up in the morning until you fall into bed at night. Inscribe them on the doorposts and gates of your cities so that you’ll live a long time, and your children with you, on the soil that God promised to give your ancestors for as long as there is a sky over the Earth.” The Message (MSG)

Last days of my mother…

last writings from failing eyesight
In loving memory of my mom. From my point of view.

Always on my mind, forever in my heart. Best mom anyone could ask for.
She is my benchmark for a deep and genuine relationship with my Lord. Brave. Committed. Consistent. Strong. Faithful. Spiritual. Loving. Kind. Gentle. Companionate. Patient. Marvelous granny. Good cook. Crafty. Knowledgable. Moral. Upright. Assertive. Fearless. Integruous. Friend. Spiritual Giant!

Towards the end of her life my dear mom did not have it all good. My heart bled for her everyday. She was in a frail care facility for which I am VERY grateful (especially to my big brother Henry who sacrificed much to ensure she received the best care). Mom had glaucoma. She had waited too long to seek help and as a result became legally blind in her 70s. Her and my dad were very blessed to stay in the AGS “Old Age Home” in a lovely apartment in Table view Capetown. They were there for each other for a long time before my dad passed away. Dad was mostly deaf, and would always joke and say “I have the eyes, she had the ears”. But my dear old dad is a subject for another day.

For many many years aft16437_1303658632809_1108864_ner dad passed away, the only contact I had with mom was a phone call. She moved to the Frail care facility in Kliprivier, Western Cape. The public phone was about 25 steps away from her room; Often times I would call and no one would answer because the staff was busy taking care of bed baths, medication allotments and/or dinner time. When someone did answer the phone usually they could not (would not) speak english and I battled to get them to understand for whom I was calling. Eventually they’d say, OH Ms Schultz, hou aan, I’ll get her. Then a long, long wait…. then I’d hear her voice coming closer and closer, and then the shuffling, then the search for a chair so she could sit, and then her sweet frail voice… Hello, who is this? Jan, Jan is that you… then through tears she’d tell me how she’d been thinking if me, praying … how were the children… go through each one. It was heart rending to be 10 000 miles away!!

I was enormously blessed to be able to spend 3 weeks with her in South Africa during the last year of her life. a blessed time I will never, ever forget. This is when I really got to know my mom and what she had gone through, and what she had become.

During these last years of her life, there were many limitations that could not be overcome; the biggest one being that the facility was of another faith and language. Yet she never complained about those who would come and care for her who could not (would not) speak english to her. She would smile and just be grateful, kind and forgiving, muddle through whatever it was they were doing for her. She would pray for them.

She was hard of hearing. We had provided a radio/cassette player for her so she could spend the endless days at least listening to some music or listening to tapes of sermons or motivational talks. But what happened was, she could not use the ear phones, so she would have to put it so loud that the entire place was subjected to whatever it was she was listening to. As a result, a nurse would come and unplug it from the wall, so that it would not work…. she’d fiddle with it endlessly and then tell us it was broken. Until my brother Ernest or some kind person would discover the ‘fault’ and plug it in again and so the cycle would start again.

There was a ‘deacon’ from the affiliated church that was assigned to visit with her each week. He was VERY Afrikaans and had a hard time reading to her from her English Bible. But it was a hi-light of her week.

For mom to get around comfortably without her cane, we would stand facing her and we’d link our forearms and we would walk backwards. We joked about it and said we’re “doing the shuffle” again. She preferred just hanging on to us like this rather than using her stick. (besides, we were scared of her with a stick!) lol

Her bed is so high she had to hoist herself up onto it. When she was sitting on it her feet didn’t touch the floor. That was the extent of her daily physical exertion. At least it was something…

While I was there she got me to tidy and sort through her things. It was a very emotional thing for me. Many of the things she thought were there, were not. Only conclusion being that “someone needed it more than her” is what she said. Several sad things I found… my dads papers and lifes “treasures” – of which there were few.
There were two boxes of his belongings that mom had not even looked at since he passed away… some of his treasures… His wallet, his pocket knife, an old clock he’d had since I can remember, his nail cutters… (Choke, sniff).

I also found Many letters unopened, from me, and my niece. The pictures in Lesleys letters were so, so precious. She desperately tried to see them with her 1/2 inch thick glasses and magnifying glass, but she said “there’s not enough light”. She got me to put them on her wall next to her bed where she could touch them.

Mom had her hair washed and styled every Friday. This week dec 4, 09, she had a perm. She wanted to know if it looked good. She also has a Lady come and “do” her nails about once a month. I’m really glad about this. It’s not something people think about, but for the elderly this could be a serious problem. Besides, a girl needs to feel a little pampered and beautiful now and then right?

THE most heart rending thing was that I got to take her to the hospital for her eye check up. This was a ritual that happened about 4 or 5 times a year. Usually the home would call a “taxi” for her and she had to pay. She was so, so happy that her appointment was during my visit. But the sad, sad thing…This was a very very difficult thing for me to see. Moms eyes are way beyond help, but she had to continue to see the specialists in order to keep tabs on the pressure- which would give her severe headaches; and to remove the eye lashes that continue to grow in towards the eye, scratching and irritating the eye ball no end. The pain my poor little mom had to endure during this procedure was excruciating. Even the doctor was apologizing profusely with each eyelash removed. She had to remove about 20 or more.

Mom says: “don’t worry you do your job, and I’ll moan. It’s worth the pain for the relief I will feel tomorrow”.
It saddens my heart at the thought that she has to go through this alone every 2 or 3 months. Oh what a heaviness it is to me that I was so far away, and there was no one to take her.

While I was visiting I “broke mom out” of the frail care Facility (we joked). We treated her like a queen, she said. She was in her element! I put a chair in the shower and she said it was the first shower she’d had in years. She LOVED it.

The most important thing I found was that her face was set as flint towards her Lord. Listening, hearing and interceding for her country, her people, her care givers and her family.

She would talk about her great grandchildren and say don’t forget to teach them “Jesus Loves me this I know”.

I was privileged to be able to ask her some deep questions …. Question: What would be some last words you’d want to say to your loved ones?
Answer: it was wonderful to be your mother and grandmother. I loved to watch you grow and become independent. Seek The Lord with all your strength because He is the guiding light of our lives. Even if you don’t believe, He gave His Son as a sacrifice – it is awesome that we might be fully redeemed. Although we as human beings let Him down so badly, He still stepped up and gave His life. Tell satan to go to hell and take his devils with him!

I love you mom.

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