The Ministry of Lisa Copen

Lisa Copen, Founder of Rest Ministries which serves the chronically ill, shares about mothering, illness, ministry and more.

Beside you on this daily journey


So, here I am back to this blog. I had good intentions, I looked forward to writing out my simple reflections on a regular basis. And then the holidays arrived…

My family (parents and sister) arrived from out of town and we had a Christmas marathon. We had two fun-filled days of celebrating the holiday (grandma and grandpa brought lots of gifts for my 2-year-old son so unwrapping alone took some time.) We also made it to church.  We sat in the back row in case my son needed a fast escape. For a moment, I thought the people in front of us were being distracted by his jumping around a bit, but then I realized they were watching their own young daughter. She was behind us, all dressed up in a velvet dress with a big bow, and just as I spotted her, she leaned over and stuck her tongue on the handrail and slid along it about 20 feet before her flabbergasted parents reached her.  One less thing to dust!

The next morning we headed out early to Disneyland and California Adventure. We’d planned three days here, (we wanted to take the full benefit of the tickets we got at Costco) but I called a family meeting on Main Street USA the second night and said, "What are we, nuts?" And everyone agreed. . . our feet were tired, the fun was overwhelming and we needed a day of rest.  Donald could wait to see us another time.

Rest included Denny’s, Starbucks, a stop off to the Disneyland mall and then back to San Diego. Not to our house, but downtown, where the Holiday Bowl (football) celebrations were starting. The University of Oregon had made it to this bowl game in San Diego and this is my alumi. My mom also works at the University of Oregon and so my parents had season tickets. We made it up the next morning for the parade and Josh looked the part all decked out in his green and yellow Duck outfits.

Everywhere he went he would yell "Quack Quack" and adults would "quack" back at him and he would giggle. We made it to the game (unfortunately they lost) and then waited nearly 2 hours to catch the trolley to take us back to our car. I told everyone I was sitting on the curb until the line was gone. There was no way I could stand.

How did I do it? I really don’t know. To be honest, I took a lot of medications. I sat down as much as possible. I snacked on protein bars constantly and I kept a close on eye on my son– because the joy in his little eyes over seeing Mickey Mouse or a stadium of 60,000 people was, like the commercials say, "priceless." I was very blessed.

But now I am paying the price. I’ve gained weight, another 4 pounds in the last WEEK alone,  as the extra prednisone has caught up with me. Ever since surgery last August my body has been trying to recover and the doctor said, "just stay at 10 mg." But my clothes are getting tight. And my face is fat again. Puffy. After spending 2 1/2 years not eating ONE french fry, one piece of bread, or one drop of sugar, (I lost 84 pounds) the weight coming ON, not off, has made me depressed. It’s scared me to death. It rules my thougts and then I sneak a bite of my kid’s popcorn and feel even worse.

My right shoulder is thrashed. When the surgeon said, "We’ll consider replacing that joint when the pain takes over your life" I thought I could deal with it a bit longer. Now I am starting to wonder. It throbs up and down my arm all night, shooting that dull ache of pain like someone has stuck a needle in my arm. Cortizone shots are no longer working.

I’ve not "blogged" because I simply didn’t know what to say.

Like you, some days are pretty good. Despite pain, my spirit is joyful, my outlook is bright. Other days, my toddler refuses to get into the car and as I’m trying to sit on him to buckle him into his seat, I worry that soon I won’t be able to do this anymore. It won’t be long before he is bigger than me and stronger than me, and I’m afraid his strong will could continue to grow too if I don’t get a handle on it all.

My husband and I sat and watched 1 1/2 hours of James Dobson’s video series on disciplining children. It says, "stay consistent." Yes, I know… but sometimes as parents we’re just so TIRED. Super Nanny would not be pleased as I say, "yes, you can have crackers for dinner, just sit down at the table."

Some days I am overwhelmed at all the fabulous things God is doing with Rest Ministries and the doors he is opening up. Other days, I look at our bank balance and wonder how I will cover the expenses? How long I can continue to work in the middle of the night? (Insomnia has it’s benefits until the next morning rolls around.)

I pour my heart into Rest Ministries as a volunteer and yet I’m unable to please everyone. There are few complaints but those I receive break my heart and keep me up at night. It’s frustrating because I know people think that they are emailing off their opinions to just "an organization" and not little ole me, who is struggling to just make it through one hour at a time. 

I don’t have any wisdom to share.

Perhaps my only point is you aren’t alone. Have you ever felt like no matter how much you pray, read the Word, go to church, etc. God is just silent? That’s why I haven’t blogged. Life is hard.  I’ve sat and sobbed over personal issues that I can’t share with you. I’ve gone days without sleep and yet have ended up at the park going down slides to make sure my son has something fun to do.  And then he cries when I say, "Mommy can’t go down anymore times. Mommy has an owie on her knees. I’ll meet you at the bottom. Be a big boy!" Right now, nearly every cuticle is infected and just typing is tricky. My hand aches where I stabbed in on a knife last week while unloading the dishwasher.  I’m exhausted. My life is blessed, but it’s not  "all together."

And yet, I can’t complain, I shouldn’t be complaining–right? Because I DO know just how blessed I am. My family has gone through some turmoils but they are pretty-much-healthy-enough. We have roofs over our head. We know the Lord, which makes all the difference in just coping. God IS good!

Many of you said you were glad I was "blogging…"  That it made me more personable, that you felt you knew me better. Well, I hope I haven’t scared you away with my honesty. I’ve caught you "up to date" but it’s nothing special. I’m praying for you. Please remember me in your prayers too.

Your friend,Signature_3


  airline wrote @

I haven’t been up to much these days. Such is life. I’ve just been letting everything happen without me these days, but I don’t care.

  Steve wrote @

An integrated, segregated society is better

  Onerbimemaice wrote @

I ve tried it but it is very hot and fast – i woud better better preffer

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