how to heal


my back is sore today.

it feels like a classic flare up.  just have to heat, ice, rest, and medicate it.

my biggest lesson i am sharing is this:  God doesn’t do what we want, we do what God wants.  wow mind blower right.  not really.  how many times have you heard that.  but yet i found my prayer today an attempt at getting Him to do what i want.  by the end of my prayer i realized that it was a whole big attempt at me feeling more comfortable and the world being about what i want.

as i write this it roles off very easily in my mind.  i’m sure your thinking “yeah, yeah, yeah… heard that. know that. so what.”

but i do not want to miss how jacked up that is.  how sinful that is.  how not being honest about who God says i am and who He says He is is not going to lead to life and health. for whatever reason He has not healed me, i don’t have a lot of patience about it, and so i abused my talk with Him by not being open to the most beautiful and ultimate which is His will and being in accordance with Him.

here is what i heard

not in an audible voice, but that deep inside Holy Spirit tug on your being voice.  though, i really wish it were audible.  those people who say they audibly hear God’s voice can equal parts freak me out as well as make me a little jealous. know what i mean?

here it is:


that is impactful because i didn’t stop working and abusing my back to get me into this spot in the first place.  so i have been frustrated today because i want to be back (pun intended) to being a capable individual.  its  still hard for me to ride in the car, do house work, tie my shoes.  and why is that…. because i didn’t stop.

so again today, deep down in me, i heard Him say “stop”.  but now i realize that it is more than a literal stop working and irritating your back.  though, at the time that is what i was thinking.  but now i am actually hearing God.  i thought about it after He said it. i felt His grace for making it about me.  and thats when i got it.


the days are long and the years are fast


this story your living is about more than you


you are learning, do not miss that


it will work out

i am going to heal.  maybe not physically, at least not today. that is hard to acknowledge. but knowing that i am healing and i am spiritually unable to mess things up between God and myself makes stopping easy and enjoyable.

work and prayer

imagine yourself in a row boat or a canoe

a storm comes up on the water

first a drizzle

then some wind

waves start to cause splashing of water into your boat

worse trouble if the boat sinks

so you pray

and you continue to paddle for shore


view work accordingly

minimalist gift guide from Leo at

The Zen Habits Holiday Gift Guide

By Leo Babauta

The holiday season is here, and with it comes consumer madness.

I’m not a fan of buying a bunch of gifts and getting into credit card debt just to stress yourself out more and work harder to pay off the bills, all to add to the needless clutter we already have in our homes.

So I say opt out.

Don’t be a part of the madness. It’s a trap, designed to get us to spend our money, but we don’t need to fall prey to it. We can opt out.

What should you do instead of buying a bunch of crap? I have a few ideas, but I’m sure you can come up with even more.

The Zen Habits Gift List

Here are some alternative gift ideas for your loved ones, to get your creative juices flowing:

  • Create a personal website for someone, complete with photo montage, if you’re good at web stuff.
  • Create a picnic for the two of you, or for the whole family or group of friends.
  • Plan a day trip into nature.
  • Create a scrapbook.
  • Find a board game at Goodwill and customize it for the person’s personality.
  • Make a treasure hunt for them.
  • Sew them a personalize quilt.
  • If you have an expertise, give them the gift of coaching: be their personal trainer, French tutor, guitar teacher, if that’s what they’ve been wanting to do, and that’s in your expertise.
  • Pass along your absolute favorite books (including mine, if you already ordered one).
  • Massages are often appreciated.
  • Clean their house or wash their car.
  • Bake brownies or a berry pie.
  • Make a personalize card set for them for Werewolf / Mafia and play with your group.
  • Help them realize their dreams.
  • Do a challenge with them.
  • Take a class together (community classes are often free or cheap).
  • Pass on your digital camera if you aren’t using it and they would.
  • Gift certificate for mowing their lawn.
  • Make an illustrated book about how awesome the person is.
  • Create a video from family/friends with everyone sharing what they love about the person.

These aren’t all free, but they aren’t part of the consumerist holiday shopping tradition. They take extra effort, which is why they’re special. The loved ones in your life are worth more than a few clicks online and a hit to your credit card.

entry number one: health, God, & minimalism

i am starting.

this is a blog.  i know that i don’t have an audience and that i’m talking to no one.  like a professor in an auditorium lecturing on and on with full presentation materials but having no attendees in class.  i doubt any professor has actually carried on a class with no one there to hear and participate in the lecture.  so with that in mind i realize that this isn’t worth anything because no one is here, well “worth anything” is debatable.

and that is why I am doing it. i need to heal.  i need to do this for me.  i need to communicate things to myself and have myself realize how loved it is.  so this is for me, sappy and self help ridden as that is.

there are so many people out there trying to get healthy. Myself include.  Joella and i talk about being healthy often.  not so much physical health.  the other healths. relational, spiritual, emotional, mental.  those healths.  here is the deal.  we are all deeply unhealthy.

explanation as to what got me to this point is as follows:

i blew my back out.  its gone.  it seems to be healing. the same as the polar caps seem to be melting.  i cant see it, and it is slow.  so so so slow.  like life.  slowwwww…  so i am in physical pain.  not for the first time in my life.  i have been in physical pain for a solid month.  i just finished a heavy dose of anti-inflammatory roids.  felt lots better while on the meds.  now i hurt.  but i am getting better and am emphatically avoiding surgery.  despite some recommendations otherwise

now i want to be healthier.  my back needs to be healthier so that i can be back to normal (pun intended).  though, i don’t think that i want to be my old normal.  i not only want to drop 10 pounds, for my back and bodies sack. i need to be healthier so as to not live with pain…..

think about that.  i need to be healthier so as to not live with pain….

listen to it…. say it out loud.

i need to be healthier so as to not live with pain….

i have been journaling regularly for a decade now.  most of it is junk, but i’m sure i have some good writings in there.  i don’t know for sure, nor will i ever know.

what i do know is that writing has helped me.  i didn’t know that i liked it.  i didn’t know that i was a writer.  mostly because i thought writing was hard and that i wasn’t good at it.  that was the case for my two older siblings so i fell in with them.

that is not my case; though it maybe my siblings.  i like it.  and i am good at it.  so here i am to do something that i like and that helps me to be healthy.

this is a blog for my health and for the hope that it helps someone else’s health as well.

it is physically painful for me to write right now. but i am going to push through because it is mentally, emotionally, and spiritually beneficial. not so much relational because there is no one reading this at the time of writing.

you will find that my plan is to be minimal with this blog.  yes i am a minimalist.  and yes it is a form of consumerism, just on the flip side of the coin.  no it doesn’t look like your minimalism or like what you think minimalism should look like.  i have also been working on being a minimalist for about a decade.  well before it was in vogue.  when i talked to friends and family about it they would become combative and negative.  steve is the one who sniffed out for me that it was another form of consumerism, just on the flip side of the coin.

as well as being a minimalist (reluctantly so), i am also a christian.  and here is the deal with these things and how they relate in life.  they both don’t fix things.  or to stay in with topic “make you healthy”.  they help. but its not going to fix me.  its not going to fix my pain.  its not going to heal…… thats why i am writing. because i want to remind myself that it isn’t going to be fixed. God isn’t going to fix me.

so i need to stop using Him.  really stop using anything.  thats where the freedom is.  thats where the health is.  i hope to find myself and this blog to fall in the middle of being philosophical and tactical.  meaning not everything is going to be a philosophical understanding of the healths or a tactical step by step guide to get better.  but somewhere in the middle of all that. somewhere we all need to be.

because we cant use things. it doesn’t work. we cant use God to make us better.  i cant use Him.  He doesn’t work that way.  He isn’t going to… using him as a lucky rabbits foot or as some wish granter is balderdash and leads to people hating him. i just read something from a kid who understands god so much deeper than he has ever.  the kids conclusion though is that he is now an atheist because God isn’t going to magically fix him.  he got it right, but somewhere the kid failed to truly understand God’s love and what God truly says about who He is and who we are.

we fail ourselves and others when we teach or believe moralism and that God owes us.

we fail ourselves and others when we teach or believe that we will be happier…if or when….____________……

that is the premise of this blog, Christianity, and minimalism.

sign up so that i have followers.

thank you

benjamin lee howard