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Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit


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Tomorrow, Tomorrow I Love Ya Tomorrow…

By the Rev. Dr. Ed Hird

While back in High School, my youngest son Andrew  had a tremendous experience as Daddy Warbucks in his BCCA school’s Annie musical .  He even shaved off his hair to really get into the part!  The entire school rallied around the musical, resulting in a great sense of school spirit and camaraderie.  Thanks to the hard work of the drama teacher Mrs. Birth and the music teacher Mrs. Gleimus, the participants blossomed and became a close-knit team.  I was very impressed by the quality performance of all the youth that put their heart and soul into the production.

The 9-year-old girl who played Annie was superb.  One person commented that she was as good as the original Annie!  Her fellow orphans were cute, endearing, and believable, especially in the song ‘It’s a Hard Knock Life”.  Another real star in the show was the orphanage director Miss Hannigan, who demonstrated a wonderful slapstick humour: “Why any kid would want to be an orphan, I’ll never understand”.  And who can forget the good-natured BCCA Principal Mr. Jarvie who surprised everyone when he was wheeled in as President Roosevelt!

The Annie musical was based on Harold Gray’s “Little Orphan Annie” comic strip.  Harold Gray invented Little Orphan Annie in 1924 for the Chicago Tribune.  Ironically Harold Gray did not start his comic strip with a little orphan girl, but rather with a boy named Otto (Little Orphan Otto!)

The Annie musical began at the Alvin Theatre on April 21, 1977. The New York show went for 2,377 performances, making it the third longest running musical of the 1970s. In 1982, the movie version was released starring Albert Finney, Aileen Quinn, Ann Reinking, and Carol Burnett.

One of my favorite songs from the Annie Musical is ‘Tomorrow’.  Going through a bitter 1930’s depression, it gave people great hope to remember that ‘The sun will come out tomorrow’.  It is easy to be stuck in the past, in fear and discouragement.  The ‘Annie’ musical reminds us to be future-oriented. To believe in the future gives us the courage to face each day’s challenges.  “Just thinkin’ about tomorrow clears away the cobwebs and the sorrow.”  Life can beat us down and make us want to give up.  The Annie musical reminds us that “ya gotta hang on ’til tomorrow come what may”.  The future can seem very mysterious and inaccessible.  The Annie musical reminds us that : “Tomorrow! Tomorrow! I love ya Tomorrow! You’re always a day a way!”  Visionary people believe that there is hope for their future, that life is worth the struggle, that breakthroughs will come if we don’t give up.

The Annie Musical also reminds me that all of us feel alone at times; all of us can feel like orphans.  Life can sometimes feel very overwhelming.  The answer for Annie’s plea was adoption by Daddy Warbucks.  The answer for our pleas in the 21st Century is the Spirit of adoption.  All of us long for a father who will accept us and love us as we are.  Jesus said: “If you have seen me, you have seen the Father.”  Jesus reveals the heart of a true, loving Father, a Father who loves us beyond measure, a Father who longs to adopt us as his very own children.  God has a special place in his heart for the fatherless, the abandoned, and the rejected.  All of us at some level are little Orphan Annie.  All of us are waiting to be loved.

Daddy Warbucks sang to Orphan Annie: “Something was missing but dreams can come true; that something was no one but you”.  Just like Daddy Warbucks, the heavenly Father is longing to adopt you and give you a new silver locket, if you will just say ‘yes’.  The Father loves you beyond your wildest dreams.  The Father rejoices over you, and is saying, “It’s okay to come back home.  The table is set.  The Adoption Party is ready to begin!”  God’s family, the Church, would love to throw a party in your honour this very Sunday!  See you then.

 

The Rev. Dr. Ed Hird, BSW, MDiv, DMin

-previously published in the North Shore News

-award-winning author of the book Battle for the Soul of Canada

for better for worse-Click to check out our newest marriage book For Better For Worse: discovering the keys to a lasting relationship on Amazon. You can even read the first two chapters for free to see if the book speaks to you.

 

-The sequel book Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit is available online with Amazon.com in both paperback and ebook form. In Canada, Amazon.ca has the book available in paperback and ebook.

It is also posted on Amazon UK (paperback and ebook ), Amazon France (paperback and ebook), and Amazon Germany (paperback and ebook).

Restoring Health is also available online on Barnes and Noble in both paperback and Nook/ebook form.  Nook gives a sample of the book to read online.

Indigo also offers the paperback and the Kobo ebook version.  You can also obtain it through ITunes as an IBook.

To receive a signed copy within North America, just send a $20 cheque (USD/CAN) to ED HIRD, #102-15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC V4A 0A5, Canada.

– In order to obtain a signed copy of the prequel book Battle for the Soul of Canada, please send a $18.50 cheque to ‘Ed Hird’, #102-15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC V4A 0A5.

For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.  This can also be done by PAYPAL using the e-mail ed_hird@telus.net . Be sure to list your mailing address. The Battle for the Soul of Canada e-book can be obtained for $4.99 CDN/USD.

-Click to purchase the Companion Bible Study by Jan Cox (for the Battle of the Soul of Canada) in both paperback and Kindle on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca 


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Saying No to Abuse

By the Rev. Dr. Ed Hird

It takes courage to say ‘No’.  It takes courage to stand up against abuse.  Over the years, I have met many people in abusive situations who have paid a great price to eventually extricate themselves from the vicious cycle of manipulation and recrimination.

Sexual and physical abuse, in particular, scars the victim deeply.  Often the victims falsely blame themselves.  Recovery from abuse involves breaking the conspiracy of silence and deception perpetrated by abusers.  As they say in Alcoholics Anonymous, we are as sick as our secrets.  Only the truth, however painful, can really set us free.  Secrecy keeps us chained to our abusers.

Part of the cycle of abuse is that abusers are very skilled at blaming the victim.  Many abuse victims internalize these false accusations and begin to blame themselves.  Sexual abuse victims often carry a false sense of guilt and shame.  Breaking false shame off victims can be very liberating.  Sometimes scripture can help release people from such self-rejection: ‘You are already clean because of my word spoken to you’ (John 15:3) and ‘Do not call unclean that which God has made clean’ (Acts 10:15).  All of us need to experience the cleansing stream of God’s Holy Spirit.  All of us need to be washed with the water of the Word, removing our stains and blemishes (Ephesians 5:27).  All of us need catharsis in our daily lives.

Abusers exercise ongoing control over their victims through fear and guilt.  The heart of all addiction is the cycle of fear and guilt.  Breaking the cycle of manipulation will release massive breakthrough in a person’s life.  As the Good Book puts it, perfect love casts out all fear.  Breaking the power of fear is critical to putting the abuse victim on a stable footing.  Abusers are always destabilizing the victim’s environment, causing them to ‘walk on eggshells’.  Abusers will often use ‘divide and conquer’ techniques that cuts the victim off from their natural support network.

God’s truth through Scripture can be most helpful here.  It is not by accident that the phrase ‘Do not fear’ is used over 365 times in the Bible, at least once for every day of the year.  As Timothy was once reminded, God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power and love and a sound mind (2 Timothy 1:7) .  God’s gift of ‘a sound mind’ is key to removing ‘stinking thinking’ and giving us instead peace that passes all understanding.  God hasn’t given us a spirit that makes us a slave again to fear but rather has given us the Spirit of adoption (Romans 8:15).  The key to breaking fear is realizing that in Jesus, we are adopted, we are chosen, we are accepted in the beloved.  Nothing can cast us away from his loving arms.

Abusers specialize in condemning their victims as bad and unworthy of acceptance.  The Good Book in contrast says that there is no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1).  Breaking the power of condemnation releases great joy into the lives of abuse victims.  No longer do they need to falsely accuse themselves and beat themselves up.  Instead they learn to accept themselves in Christ’s love.  When the manipulative power of fear and condemnation is broken, victims can become victors in remarkable unexpected ways.  Creativity becomes released. Healthy boundaries become re-established.  Abusers lose their power to control and entrap others.  Victims stop enabling the very behaviours that keep them enslaved.

It all starts when people stop rewarding abusers and start blowing the whistle on them, when people say no to manipulation, say no to fear and guilt, say no to the ways of death and destruction.  It takes courage to reach out to the support networks around you, whether to your teacher, doctor, social worker, counsellor or pastor, but it is well worth it.  It is not your fault.  You deserve better.  Say no to abuse. Say yes to life.  You are worth it.  You are loved.

Two resources that I would recommend in your recovery from abuse are Dr. James Dobson’s book ‘Love Must Be Tough’ and Dr. Townsend & McCloud’s best-selling ‘Boundaries’ book.  My prayer for each person reading this article is that we and our families will be given the serenity to accept the things we cannot change, the courage to change the things we can, and the wisdom to know the difference, in Jesus’ name.

The Rev. Dr. Ed Hird, BSW, MDiv, DMin

-previously published in the Deep Cove Crier/North Shore News

-award-winning author of the book Battle for the Soul of Canada

for better for worse-Click to check out our newest marriage book For Better For Worse: discovering the keys to a lasting relationship on Amazon. You can even read the first two chapters for free to see if the book speaks to you.

 

-The sequel book Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit is available online with Amazon.com in both paperback and ebook form. In Canada, Amazon.ca has the book available in paperback and ebook.

It is also posted on Amazon UK (paperback and ebook ), Amazon France (paperback and ebook), and Amazon Germany (paperback and ebook).

Restoring Health is also available online on Barnes and Noble in both paperback and Nook/ebook form.  Nook gives a sample of the book to read online.

Indigo also offers the paperback and the Kobo ebook version.  You can also obtain it through ITunes as an IBook.

To receive a signed copy within North America, just send a $20 cheque (USD/CAN) to ED HIRD, #102-15168 19th Ave, Surrey, BC V4A 0A5.

– In order to obtain a signed copy of the prequel book Battle for the Soul of Canada, please send a $18.50 cheque to ‘Ed Hird’, #102-15168 19th Ave, Surrey, BC V4A 0A5.

For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.  This can also be done by PAYPAL using the e-mail ed_hird@telus.net . Be sure to list your mailing address. The Battle for the Soul of Canada e-book can be obtained for $4.99 CDN/USD.

-Click to purchase the Companion Bible Study by Jan Cox (for the Battle of the Soul of Canada) in both paperback and Kindle on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca