Listening to uplifting and inspirational music every morning is a huge way I get myself thinking positively and hopefully at the beginning of the day. I do this while getting my breakfast shake, tea, supplements and healthy energy drink ready.


I begin with a selection of songs by Avicii, put together by my younger son Max. The names of the songs are: “You Make Me,” “Levels,” “Broken Arrows”, and “Trouble,” but the best one is “The Best Day of My Life.” Tacked onto the end of this playlist is a Rend Collective version of “Be Thou My Vision,” – the theme song of the Emmaus weekend I participated in several years ago. This young talented singer actually died a few years ago of a debilitating illness. I stopped listening to his songs for a little while, but returned to them because of how happy and uplifting his music is. They’re all on a Playlist in my IPhone that my son set up for me. 


When the playlist is over, I turn to YouTube, where I then listen to the following songs beginning with “Living Hope” and ending with “The Goodness of God.” The order of the rest of the songs depends on how Youtube plays the songs for me.


1)    “Living Hope,” by Phil Wickham

2)    “Diamonds,” by Hawk Nelson

3)    “You’re an Overcomer,” by Mandisa

4)    “I Will Follow You,” by Chris Tomlin

5)    “Alive and Breathing,” by Matt Maher

6)    “Raise a Hallelujah,” by Bethel Music

7)    “Goodness of God,” by Bethel Music


Usually, “Goodness of God” is playing as I’m getting ready to do my morning devotion, and sometimes, as I’m praying. 


It’s hard to describe the peace and order and hope that listening to these songs every morning gives me. As they start out, I might not be quite awake, or I might be feeling crabby. “Best Day of My Life” is the third song that plays, and sometimes it kind of slips right by me; other times, I sing and/or dance to it. I’m definitely singing by the time “Be Thou My Vision” plays. And as all the songs from YouTube play, I’m lifting my voice in gratitude and feeling God’s presence. Waking me up to another day. Another day in His world. 

if you're recovering from an abortion that still haunts you, and you'd like more ideas about how to bring routine, order, and positivity to your days, please join me in our Facebook group: Gentle Breezes. It's time.

Blessings, Carol Stribula

Transformation in God

As often happens lately, when I read scripture, it feels like God is talking specifically to me, and specifically as related to the holistic healing I’ve done over the years in relation o the abortion I had. The last two mornings, the scripture has been in my face, in a good way. I’ve just finished reading The Shack, and, as any of you who’ve read it, you might know what I mean. 
I have a few big take-aways from The Shack. One is, God definitely desires for us to allow Him to be right in the center of us, in all of who we are, who we love, who we’re friends with, how we spend our days…
The second take-away is that we all have our shacks. The deepest, darkest part of ourselves that we’ve somehow allowed to define us, limit us, diminish us, and probably, separate us from God. 
The third take-away is about transformation, which is where today’s scripture from the book of Romans comes in. 
“Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God — this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world 🌎, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is — His good, pleasing and perfect will.”
(Romans 12:1-2)
Because of God’s mercy as it relates to our imperfect selves, we can offer all of who we are — our heart, mind and will — to God as a living sacrifice. We can do this because we have a new life of the Holy Spirit. As we begin to do this, our minds are transformed over time, and the result is that we become more in tune with God’s will for our lives. We then also become less tethered to the ways of the world (NIV Study Bible, pp. 1726-1727). It’s a miracle in the making!
I’ve been allowing God to transform me for many years now. Little by little. He’s especially doing a lot of transforming this summer, as I’ve begun to open up to people about my abortion in ways I never have before. It’s hard, emotional work, above and beyond the Big Healing I did from 2016-2018. But, He’s right here with me, guiding my every step, my every share, my every insight. 
How about if you allow God to transform your life? If you’ve had an abortion that still haunts you, please contact me and join our private Facebook group: Gentle Breezes. It’s time.