<![CDATA[Purely Living Wellness - Blog]]>Tue, 16 Jan 2018 07:25:45 -0600Weebly<![CDATA[Are Paleo and Ketogenic Diets Fad?]]>Sun, 07 Jan 2018 20:24:40 GMThttp://purelylivingwellness.com/blog/are-paleo-and-ketogenic-diets-fadPicture
Today Robyn Openshaw shares her opinion on Paleo and Ketogenic diets. Also known as the Green Smoothie Girl, she shares my opinion that these fad diets do not offer sustainable long term health, for the same reasons I have been doing my best to educate those who are open minded about holistic wellness.

Four years ago I shared my thoughts about Paleo on my blog and apparently Robyn has also voiced her same thoughts in the past. Now she explains why ketogenic diets  may be harmful. I encourage you to share her blog post with anyone who is on the Paleo or Ketosis bandwagon. I fully acknowledge that as an author, your friends may be more apt to heed her words than my own…since I speak from life experience and seven years of self-learning in cancer diets and preventative lifestyles.

I believe in living a primarily ANTI-INFLAMMATORY lifestyle - being mindful of which foods contribute inflammation to my body and for the most part, avoiding them. I learned much of this from trial and error, and paying attention to what my body was telling me. Fortunately, with the discovery of bio-resonance and the food sensitivity and inflammation panel testing I can offer to my clients, we can remove some of that guesswork.

As a certified bio-resonance technician I have created a program for my system that allows me to scan an individual for the well known diets touted in the wellness industry - Gerson, Budwig, Ketogenic, Bali, Anti-Inflammatory, and more...which helps direct a person to a protocol that should prove beneficial and eliminate some of the guesswork. 

Please contact me if you want to learn more about my L.I.F.E. (Living Intentionally From Experience), or Qest4 Bio-Resonance services.

Cheers to a HEALTHY and HAPPY 2018!
Rita S.

<![CDATA[Purely Living Receives Recognition]]>Mon, 11 Dec 2017 21:40:40 GMThttp://purelylivingwellness.com/blog/purely-living-receives-recognitionPicture
We are proud to have received a number of emails this week where this website is getting noticed for the educational content it provides to our readers.

I received an email from Shree of Home Remedies for Life and am honored to be included on her list of Top 25 Health Bloggers.  Shree highlights my own journey back to health, but of course, personally I am most proud of all the research I have done well beyond 2010 and turning my own health around, as I focus on helping others in their cancer journey and most importantly, educating on cancer prevention! 
If you would like to see us listed and leave a comment feel free to visit the article here, and take  note  of all the amazing women dedicated to healthy living!

Fellow blogger Jesse Miller has offered insight as the benefits of one of my favorite root vegetables - BEETS!  It includes 15 health benefits of beets and 8 delicious recipes. Jesse found my roasted beets recipe, here, and as well - I have a variety of smoothie recipes that use beets.

Jenny contacted me from Best Mattress Reviews after seeing the effort I put into educating and providing healthful information for cancer patients. The research her company provides goes hand in hand with some of my work. Her team has been researching how people sleep, and have collected some great information for cancer patients and caretakers. You can read their full guide on the bestmattressreviews site.

Here are a few of their findings:
Sleep disorders vary among different patient populations: The rates of sleep disorders reported by cancer patients vary based on the type of cancer they are being treated for and the type of treatment they are receiving. Some patient populations experience a 75% chance of sleep disturbances, while others experience rates as low as 25%.
Sleep problems can continue after treatment ends: Approximately 25% of cancer survivors continue to report sleep disturbances or daytime fatigue. This is due in part to the long-term effects of some treatments on the body; it can also be a lingering effect of experiencing the trauma of a life-threatening illness. Fortunately, both physical and mental causes of sleep disturbances are treatable, and patients have many options available for returning to a healthy sleep cycle.

Of course I am an advocate of encouraging people to consider sleep as vital in their health recovery program. Chemical foam mattresses are some of the worst cess pools of toxins one can lie down in, or place your head upon. If you have electric mattress pads...they serve as conductors for all the EMFs you have going on in your home (wi fi, cell phones, Smart Meters, etc.) - it is like sleeping on one large antenna!  I love my organic latex mattress from Satara Mattress in Middleton, WI and also choose to sleep on a BioMat at lowest temp setting during cold WIsconsin nights. I also have a SafeConnect protective shield on my cell phone, as on the rare occasion where I do need an alarm to get up unusually early, I am at least not swimming in harmful energies from my phone.

Again, I am honored to be recognized in the Top 25 Health Bloggers by Home Remedies for Life. Be sure to explore their site - they have much great information to offer.

Be well and reduce your stress this holiday season!
Rita S.

<![CDATA[Collecting Herbs for Winter Use]]>Tue, 31 Oct 2017 01:57:53 GMThttp://purelylivingwellness.com/blog/collecting-herbs-for-winter-use Picture
As we enter into November and the holidays we may already be catching wafts of the smells of the season. Warmed apple cider, cinnamon scent of burning wood as the smoke drifts from the neighbor’s chimney…

On Thanksgiving Day the smell of sage, a seasoning often used in turkey stuffing may trigger memories of family gatherings. According to Mike Castleman’s book, “The New Healing Herbs”, the history of sage used in medicine is vast –prescribed for snake bites, epilepsy, and intestinal worms and made into a poultice to bandage wounds. An English proverb, “He that would live forever/Must eat sage in May.”
With frosty nights in the air, NOW is the time to harvest your perennial herbs if you have not already done so, to preserve and dry leaves for use during the winter. The herbs in the photo above are described in order, left to right, below.

Sage (Salvia officinalis) – Dried sage leaves are an excellent remedy to have on hand for sore throats due to its anti-bacterial properties and containing astringent tannins. In Germany a “hot sage gargle” for sore throats and tonsillitis is recommended by physicians.  Some writings suggest mixing sage tea with a bit of apple cider vinegar for sore throats.  Sage also helps to settle indigestion.  A chemical in sage, thujone, is considered potentially toxic, however the heat used to make an infusion eliminates much of the chemical making the amount recommended for medicinal purposes is minimal.
Yarrow (Achillea millefolium) – Yarrow is a versatile herb, having potential as a digestive aid, menstrual remedy and mild sedative – to containing substances that can possibly stop bleeding and offer pain relief in wounds healing, with anti-inflammatory benefits.  Chamomile and yarrow tea are a synergestic tea team to help relax the smooth muscle of the digestive tract. Yarrow can do the same for the smooth muscle of the uterus, making it a useful remedy for menstrual cramps.
Chocolate Mint (Mentha peperita) – A cross between water mint and spearmint, this spreading mint plant is wonderful to have on hand for chocolate lovers who wish to curb their cravings. I have enjoyed adding this herb to my chocolate protein smoothies during the growing season for an extra burst of delicious flavor. Check out this link for more ideas on Chocolate Mint uses, such as mojitos and adding 5 chocolate mint leaves to your coffee. I am willing to bet you will want to add this to your springtime planting list!
Mint is known to aid in digestion, and has been used to treat nausea and headache.

Catnip (Nepeta cataria)– At Purely Living Wellness Catnip is the key ingredient in our homemade insect repellent. Although felines have an affinity for catnip, humans can benefit as well. Catnip is a wonderful sleep-inducer, much the same as the more well-known Valerian root. For this purpose consider combining with chamomile. When used as a tea it does not give the “kitty high” effect, and instead it calms the nervous system – consider catnip tea for a child, sweetened with a bit of raw honey. Perhaps some catnip tea would do your feline well prior to a veterinary visit… Health benefits of Catnip include anti-oxidants of Vitamins C and E. In the mint family, Catnip is a mellow version of mint minus the menthol.
Each of these plants may make lovely additions to one’s landscape, and of course, catnip grows wild here in Wisconsin so you may find it readily in ditches, along fences, hillsides, and more. Since I began foraging and learning about the health benefits of herbs my spring plant purchases are focused on one thought, “what benefit can my family reap from this plant if I am to purchase and/or plant it”.

As I typed this blog post I added to a shallow pan of water what remained on my towel after rinsing my herbs prior to hanging them to dry. This included two sprigs of chocolate mint, a large sprig of catnip, a sage leaf, and a small piece of yarrow.  Once the simmering water extracted the phytochemicals I strained the leaves, pouring the hot water into my mug and added two drops of liquid stevia extract.  Without the stevia I was not too keen on the taste, but once sweetened ever so slightly the tea is delicious!

If you do have these plants in your landscape and you have never thought of actually harvesting them for your own benefit, I encourage you to obtain a book on herbs and their benefits, learn, and put your landscaping to work for your health!

Rita S.

​Note that to make an herbal infusion I would have allowed the plant leaves to steep much longer. Susan Weed has an excellent article on herbal infusions and is considered a foremost authority on use of herbs.
Please note that pregnant or nursing women, nor children under age 2, should use herbals without first consulting their trusted physician.
<![CDATA[Well Rested and Well Healed?]]>Tue, 15 Aug 2017 18:12:03 GMThttp://purelylivingwellness.com/blog/well-rested-and-well-healedPicture
Well rested and well healed, apparently!!
I went to bed at 10:30 last night (not my usual night owl habit) and did not wake until 8:30 this morning. I was shocked to see the clock!

I have not slept this long in  years - a 10 hour stretch without having a flu bug or something? Very outside my norm. I feel great, and have been feeling fantastic. I don't attribute to the 10 hr. stretch to anything other than my body needed to catch up as I have had a few deadlines with my website and training keeping me up past midnight for the past few weeks - several days at a time. Which of course I realize is not good for me. I often explain to my clients how God designed our bodies to heal while we sleep, and the greatest healing comes between the hours of 10 pm and 2 am.  Obviously I miss half my "healing time" by being a night owl. (I heard that time frame mentioned in one of the integrative/holistic healing summits a couple of years ago - and I realized my sleep cycle could be my doom someday if I don't do something about it.) 

For 2017 I have made a point to listen to my body. In fact, I will take a break from my bio-resonance scanning, or other daytime work, to use the tranquil therapy room in my healing center to take a mid day nap on the BioMat massage table. I spend 15-20 minutes using the Chi machine first to lull me into la la land. Since adding Wholetones sound to the therapy - these one hour breaks have provided quite the self-care experience!

Last night's long stretch of sleep meant I had to fly out the door this morning "au natural" - wash and go to meet a friend for coffee at 9 a.m. It was wonderful catching up with my friend, who is also a widow. God has blessed her with a new mate, both in their 70s, to share her life with. I love hearing their story, and patiently wait for God to reveal and write the next love chapter in my life. As always, He teaches me patience, as I do not deviate from the qualities I seek. Perhaps God will send me someone with good sleep habits that will encourage me to retire more early in the night.

Healing while we sleep...is there irony in that this article appeared in my inbox today? The Sacred Science Team e-news has an article focusing on this very topic, and the six hours I typically get each night is not enough for the body to regenerate and heal. I will be more on purpose with a longer sleep pattern. How about you? How many hours of sleep do you receive each night? 

<![CDATA[Recommending Local Energy Healer]]>Tue, 25 Jul 2017 01:25:04 GMThttp://purelylivingwellness.com/blog/new-services-available-at-purely-living-wellnessPicture
In May I had the pleasure of meeting a fellow health nut…just on the other side of town!  Stacey Bitter shares the same passion for living a healthy life style, is a foodie as well, and also has been gifted with hands that have brought healing relief to his family members since the age of 8.
Once I experienced what Stacey could do for my neck, which had not been able to rotate to the right for months (despite chiropractic and massage therapy), I knew that I had to introduce him to several friends. They now sing praises of how much better they feel after their session with Stacey. 
As a single dad who works full time, Stacey will be offering  sessions on a part time basis. Certified in reiki, Stacey also has a gift for intuition. Our clients continue to rave how “Bitter's healing energy makes them better”.
A bit about Bitter's background: Stacey has been offering his natural gift of healing touch since he was a child, when he learned to massage his mother as she went through cancer. His grandmother always told him he had a gift. 

You may contact 3rd Eye Touch at the number above to schedule a time with Stacey Bitter at his studio.
Purely Living also now offers the healing sounds of Wholetones Ancient Frequency Music in the Wellness Center therapy room.  Wholetones is being played world wide in some of the most prominent integrative and holistic wellness/cancer centers.  There is no fee to experience Wholetones. All we ask as that you allow your body to inhale the frequency vibrations and allow it to fill your being
If you enjoy Wholetones, Purely Living Wellness is now a proud affiliate, and you may purchase your own set for home healing enjoyment. It has been reported that pets who have not been faring well improve with the sound of Wholetones. It is also excellent for any being whom experiences anxiety. During the Immune Summit, currently airing for free, one of the speakers talked about the correlation between emotions and healing. The doctor stated how critical it is for every person to spend 20 minutes a day, twice a day, in total relaxation. With each Wholetones track having a time of 22 minutes and 22 seconds – it can be your perfect escape to take you on a journey to a higher, healing plane each day.

Durng a BioMat session in our relaxation room you can experience Wholetones in combination with the original Ancon Chi vibration machine, to assist with lymphatic movement. The cost is $1 per minute for the first 5.  $5 for 5 min., $8 for 10 min, $10 for 15 min If you wish to have this service we do need to allow for the extra time between appointments, so please let us know in advance.
We are excited to recommend 3rd Eye Touch and as well, offer you Wholetones and Ancho Chi vibration services to help provide you optimal wellness at the cellular level. 
To your health,
Rita S.

<![CDATA[Eczema - or TSW (Topical Steroid Withdrawal)?]]>Thu, 13 Jul 2017 15:37:36 GMThttp://purelylivingwellness.com/blog/eczema-or-tsw-topical-steroid-withdrawal

Public Service Announcement on little known TSW.

​I encourage you to read a post shared on my Facebook timeline today, July 13, 2017, by a dear friend who has had her life turned upside down by this syndrome - caused by TOPICAL STEROID CREAMS applied when she was a BABY. Continual breakouts of eczema throughout her lifetime, and contiual applicatin of steroid creams...some prescribed, and some also purchased by my friend in trying desperately to alleviate her skin condition.

First time around, once a steroid cream is applied the eczema improves (usually as a baby). When eczema returns - it is caused by the STEROIDS! If you read my friend's story she is more functional than many who suffer from Topical Steroid Withdrawal. Her skin feels like she is continually being cut by razor blades...as an example of a symptom. Not Pleasant! For those with babies and grandbabies we really need to spread the word on TSW and I ask you to read her post and share the information with anyone who is dealing with eczema.

In her post Renata mentions a mother whom she referred to me to help her son using bio-resonance scanning. The child is 8 months old. I created a program in my Qest4 system to test for TSW and programmed remedies I had researched into my system. Fortunately for the baby boy, who tested with an active TSW energy in his cellular scan, it was caught early and ONE bottle of homeopathic drops was able to alleviate all of his symptoms on short order. I was also able to direct the mother to foods that the baby is sensitive to, that she may be eating as a nursing mother.

Most with TSW do not have this happy ending, because it is not discovered until into adult hood. Those suffering really start researching their own symptoms when they finally get tired of their dermatologists wanting to only give them more steroid creams. I give God the credit for bringing the existence of TSW to my knowledge base through my friend so that I can be of help to others and spare babies from a future ordeal.

I also want to point out that in almost ALL cases, a baby with eczema is indicative of a food sensitivity. My son had had terrible eczema as a baby, and it was not until he was in his teens that I learned he has sensitivities to both dairy and gluten ...both of which I was eating way back in 1997 before I began my health journey. Nursing moms...your baby IS what you eat. If your child is not a picture of heatlh, please consider an anti inflammatory diet for a minimum of 30 days and see what it can do for your child. I am certain they will be a happier, more comfortable baby.

Take your largest organ, your skin, seriously. Remember it absorbs 60% of what you put on it , into your bloodstream and organs in 26 seconds according to the EPA.  Products are full of hormone disruptors in the form of artificial ingredients, petro chemicals, parabens, and more. Ask me about pure and beneficial alternatives for babies and adults.

To your health, 
Rita S.

PS. If this has been of interest please learn more about a documentary being produced to bring to light the many who suffer from TSW.
<![CDATA[Heart Health Truth - COCONUT OIL is GOOD!]]>Sat, 24 Jun 2017 15:33:04 GMThttp://purelylivingwellness.com/blog/heart-health-truth-coconut-oil-is-goodPicture
Don't let recent articles lead you astray in heart health... coconut oil IS very very good for you. Not only for your heart, but 3 T a day can help keep Alzheimer's at bay.

Today an email from UW Hospital system (Madison, WI) arrived in my inbox with an article on cholesterol...I thought, ok, let's see if they got it right. What do you think?

In the article by Dr. James Stein of cardiology, he does a fine job explaining cholesterol...but it was the diet recommendations I wanted to check out... FAIL!

Stein is correct on soluable fiber and recommendations to increase vegetables..fiber is key to drawing toxins and excess estrogen hormone out of the body.  Regarding fats, just like the American Heart Association article released this past week stating coconut oil is bad for you, it is no wonder Stein gets it wrong. He writes, "Increasing soluble fiber can help lower triglycerides, so choose whole grains over simple carbs and eat more fruits and vegetables. Also, substitute good fats, such as olive or canola oils, over bad fats, such as coconut, vegetable and palm oils."

CANOLA OIL is a silent killer... in fact, since the American Heart Association has been recommending canola oil high cholesterol has reached epidemic levels in the United States. Cancer goes hand in hand. Canola and vegetable oils -hydrogenated in processing, are some of the worst products you can have in your kitchen pantry.

In general, avoid PUFA (poly unsaturated fats) which promote free radicals in the body. Canola is a major GMO crop and also contributes to abnormal cell growth and depletes oxygen from the cells.

Coconut oil health benefits include reducing the risk of Alzheimer's (in fact, in the Alzheimer's summit this past spring it was noted that 3 T a day can help prevent, whereas 6 T. a day can stabilize or even reverse symptoms).  High in natural SATURATED fat it helps boost HDL (good cholesterol) and helps convert LDL (bad cholesterol) into HDL. It also helps cure UTI and kidney infections, and this article on PubMed shows how it can help reverse damaged liver.

If you want real HEART HEALTH TRUTH please read this article by Dr. Russell Blaylock - especially the information on statin drugs (a major contributor to the boon we see in Alzheimer's today). Cook with coconut oil and grapeseed oil, and use Extra Virgin Olive Oil on your dressings or at very low heat settings. The tips in this article will also benefit anyone with concerns of type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and cancer. We NEED cholesterol as it serves an important function in our bodies for brain health and hormone production.

Inflammation, not cholesterol, is the silent killer in our bodies. You can be in shape, excercise daily, and run 10 miles a day, but if your diet consists of a number of inflammatory foods (consider store bought salad dressings loaded with bad fats) - all the exercise in the world will not cancel out an inflammatory diet. Dr. Mark Sircus posted a very good article on inflammation as it relates to heart health, and how magnesium is your natural anti-heart attack supplement.

Be smart, follow the money trail - statin drugs are the biggest source of income, more so than cancer drugs, driving our messed up medical system. 
If you find this blog post of benefit please share with others who may be fooled by the fool"hearty" information that has gone mainstream recently. 

Still concerned about your heart health? Learn how bio resonance scanning can help pinpoint the root cause issues your body is dealing with and natural ways to rebalance.

Be smart, be heart healthy,
Rita S.

<![CDATA[Spring Foraging Time!]]>Thu, 11 May 2017 13:50:56 GMThttp://purelylivingwellness.com/blog/spring-foraging-timePicture

It is spring and God is providing us with a flora of God-food!! Don’t waste it, and certainly don’t spray it –

I have been enjoying the healthful benefits of the plants growing in my backyard, and adding them to my daily green smoothie.

Now, before you start pulling weeds to consume - you MUST be diligent in learning and knowing your plants. If you decide to embellish your juices or smoothies with wild plants it is up to you to know your plants. That is my disclaimer! 
I enjoy websites such as Wild Edible and Mother Earth News
. Another source for facebook users are private forums - search edible wild plants and you will find a host of forums to learn from and share images of plants you may be questioning.

In the photo above - top going clockwise:
Wood violet – rich in Vit. A & C (more than oranges!)  
Cleaver Weed is a diuretic and promotes lymphatic drainage
Creeping Charlie – high in vitamin C, benefits kidney and urinary tract

Dandelion – helps with liver detoxification and function
I encourage you to click on the web links if obtaining your nutrients and taking an organic approach to your health is of interest. In particlar, the Dandelion link takes you to the website of Dr. Edward Group, who is very well known in holistic and alternative circles, and has been a guest speaker on the Truth About Cancer summits. I hope you decide to bookmark these links for future reference.

Check out my Chocolate Wild Plant Smoothie recipe in the smoothie tab.

Enjoy the spring foraging benefits - and be well!
​Rita S.

<![CDATA[Gut Checks &  Intuition]]>Sat, 08 Apr 2017 12:46:07 GMThttp://purelylivingwellness.com/blog/gut-checks-intuitionPicture
"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever." Hebrews 13:8
Today I am reminded through morning devotions that God is my constant Companion, and although I go through seasons of change He remains constant in who He is.  As life’s circumstances draw me closer to Him in fervent prayer and petition, with my eyes closed, the sun filtered in through the glass on my living room door this morning and rested gently upon my eyes. I felt my whole body warm to the presence of the Holy Spirit.

I am certain that the devil is wrestling with a friend, trying to distract him from a Calling that will glorify God in such a way that the dark prince is deceptive in preventing any such light from shining forth in this world. It is my prayer that God will provide the gift of discernment, peace in his heart, and a “gut check” as God speaks and moves on his behalf.

"What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us?” Romans 8:31 NLT
I trust that God is by my side through all things. All of life’s seasons, changes, heart issues, emotional struggles. Through the years I feel my intuition has been heightened, and I have learned to trust my gut. I find my gut knows truth, whereas my heart can be deceived. Does that make sense?
While in prayer I often have that “gut check”, but I find it comes more easily these days, and I believe it is because I converse and pray throughout my day, not only during devotions. I pray often for wisdom and discernment, and as I mature in faith I feel God provides this as I seek Him.
I remember one of our pastors giving a message one Sunday about the gut and soul connection…I do wish I could remember which Sunday that was to go back and listen to it again. But I did find a quote by Wayne Dwyer, and I believe it follows the take away from that message.
I also found a quote from Dr. Joyce Brothers, “"Trust your hunches. They're usually based on facts filed away just below the conscious level."  As mortals we only tap into a small portion of our brain, I believe it is 6% for the average person. Some people operate at higher frequencies, and tap into a high conscience. Dr. Caroline Dean writes in one of her books that that above 10% will be used when we are in heaven, communicating in the presence of God. So in reading this quote, it leads me to the conclusion that our hunches, our gut check, intuition…whatever you want to call it – is indeed the higher conscience of God speaking to us.
The big questions is, will we listen, or do we let the devil win and allow the fear he plants supercede and take away the greater glory God intended?
My prayer for all of you is that you have a gut check, that you are able to connect with God at such a level that you learn to Trust Him in All Things. As we enter in to Holy Week, we can be assured that even when we fail to listen to God, our ultimate victory is in Christ Jesus, and the devil can never win when we put our hope in the Cross.
Rita S.

PS. Here is the light coming in through the glass of my door - isn't it beautiful!? May God's Light fall on your eyelids as they are closed in prayer, and fill you with His warmth and love.

<![CDATA[Enjoying R&R]]>Sat, 01 Apr 2017 10:54:24 GMThttp://purelylivingwellness.com/blog/enjoying-rrPicture
As I write on this first day of April there is only a short time remaining of my spring break in the Gulf Shores of Alabama. It has been my first time taking a trip to the ocean waters completely non-work related. Which means I had plenty of time for R&R.  

Now I know what you are thinking, rest and relaxation, right? And yes, it has been. But today I am focusing on two other words - Reflection & Restoration.

Reflecting on God's goodness. I am so very blessed. Blessed by my friend Cindy who invited me and my daughter to stay with her at her Gulf Shores Villa. Grateful for great captains who know how to find dolphins, and ensure you see the wonder of God in a sunset over the gulf waters, grateful for baby kangaroos (yes, I got to hold one!)...first time experiences I will not forget.

I am also grateful for the people God is putting in my path...He is at work on my behalf, daily! Of this I am certain. I know for fact that the best days of my life are yet to come. Friends ask what is my secret to looking 20 years younger, and as I reflect...it is hard to provide an answer. Diet is a given, but honestly I think it is a zest for life. I feel good about myself, who I am, where I am going, how I look...and yes, I feel sexy again. I feel loved by God, family, friends...and I give love back...and it generates a glow from within. I guess that must be my secret...and it is available to anyone.

Yesterday I waded in ocean water for the first time. The waves were high, so there was no swimming allowed...but I have always loved watching crashing waves. For me it is such a tiny glimpse of the Creator who controls those waves. There was such an intense awareness of God while I was in that water and watched and felt those waves come in and crash around my legs. If I was not standing firm and steadfast I could have easily been swept off my feet.

And isn't that a little bit like life? Maybe you feel like the waves are crashing around you and are going to swallow you up. I have been there, especially after my husband died. This is where restoration comes in...not the restoration of our physical human body that comes with good food choices and exercise, but a SPIRITUAL RESTORATION.

"He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake." Ps. 23:3

Jesus is the only one who can pull us out of the ocean depths and breathe everlasting life into us and restore our souls. If it were not for my TRUST & FAITH in God, relationship with Jesus, AND allowing the Holy Spirit to work inside me, the swirling waters of life could have sucked me down into the depths. But I chose to rise above death and uncertainty and keep my eyes on the eternal prize.

As I ready to return to Wisconsin, I can still feel those waves swirling around my legs, and almost toppling me into the water. It is an exciting time in my life, my firm foundation in faith is solid, He has blessed me with wisdom and discernment, and I have been given the path that allows me to serve others...and my soul feels very much restored!

I pray for each of you that you find your R&R...take time to reflect on His goodness in your life, and allow Jesus to restore your soul. I promise you will feel younger and a zest for life will return!

Rita S.