The Ministry of Lisa Copen

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

Archive for San Diego

Preparing for Hand Surgery Next Week

ashridge snow #3 - oak tree
Image by slimmer_jimmer via Flickr


Thank you, friends, for your support in the last few weeks as I have been recovering from Invisible Illness Week, then trying to get organized with “life”. We’ve got a “chore sheet” for our son on the back of the bathroom door and he is getting a weekly allowance. I’ve attended parent/teacher meetings, and have been flaring badly through it all. I bought a big thick daily planner, and then I copy all the stuff for the week over to the dry erase board. I am just about organized, and now it wil all soon be going haywire!

Yesterday as I limped through the house I had my own little sports commentary going on in my head, “And she’s coming around the corner, folks! She’s building speed! Oops, look out, she’s losing her balance. . . oh, she’s back in the race!”

Ever feel like you are barely moving and yet in your head you are running? (Like when people wait in their car for you to cross the street and then they look at you like,  “Could you maybe pick up the pace?”)

And through it all I’ve been visiting many doctors. January or February I will have cataract surgery, as I have a big one on each eye “bulls eye” over my retina (glad I can do something so precise!)

I am scheduled to have hand surgery November 4–next Wednesday. If all goes as planned, (no infections!) surgery will just be out-patient and I will be home that day, with a cast– for six weeks! They are rebuilding my left hand, likely doing some joint replacements and trying to put a few fingers and tendons back into place.

As much as I would love to have some of the use of my hand back, I am not looking forward to any kind of cast on my arm, as my shoulder bones are “bone on bone” and need replaced themselves; and the cast will go above the bent elbow. A couple of years ago a simple hand surgery sent me into the deepest flare I’ve had for weeks, so please pray that it will be more smooth this time.

My parents arrive soon. Dad will be here just a few days and mom will help me around the house and. . . (please pray) with driving. (Sorry, mom, but you know you hate the freeways here is San Diego.) I don’t know how good of passenger I will be as she drives me to hand therapy 20 miles away (the closest hand therapist.)

I have newsletters ready to go out to you in coming weeks and the web site will have new content every day. I’ve been doing lots to prepare for this time I will be off the computer more than on.

Answering emails will be difficult, but I will do my best. I have a voice program, but it doesn’t work when I am on pain medications because my voice slows down too much!

Any way, that is the scoop!

I read this scripture the other day from The Message:

Matthew 5:14-26 says, “Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand-shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives.
By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.” (The Message)

I am going to try to “be a light.” I think that means a “lattern” kind of soft glow, or a bright light, but not the red adn blue spinning lights that we see behind our car. I anticipate not feeling terrific, but I still have the ability to influence everyone I come into contact with – and I get to choose if that influence is positive or negative. I get to decide if I let people walk away from me encouraged or discouraged.

As you prepare for winter and pull out your heating pad and comfort items, remember that God doesn’t want to hide you under a bucket (or in your home.) And sometimes that even means ASKING for help from others. I am going to try to take my own advice and do this (unlike last year when it seemed like everyone assumed someone else was helping-including my own church where I fell through the cracks when I most needed them.)

Know you are not alone in your struggles – with people, spiritually, even with yourself! I am walking that rough road right beside you and learning some things the hard way.

I pray that you are blessed in coming weeks and that the Lord pleasantly surprises you with His light this season.

I think I can manage 140 characters picking out the letters with one hand so you keep up with me at or
in coming weeks.

God bless,

Lisa Copen, Rest Ministries Founder
Rest Ministries Chronic Illness Pain Support

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What Really Matters on the 4th of July?

American Flag in Sun at Florida National Cemetery

In just a few minutes it will be the 4th of July here in the USA. The biggest news in San Diego is that you are not allowed to drink beer or any alcoholic beverages on the beach, but you can float in the ocean water and drink. I asked my husband, “So what does that mean? All the drinking dads will say, ‘Sure, hon, I’ll watch the kids swim’ and then there will be a bunch of drinking out on the water by people who can’t even swim?” A lifeguard’s nightmare for sure.

I tried to think of what ministries or highlights I could share with you that may be of interest on this important day. Here are some I think you may find an interest in. Don’t miss the video at the end. It’s about 5-minutes but wonderful.

Unite the USA is a ministry of Carrie Beth and Stacie Stoelting, sisters who are dear friends of mine who have an amazing amount of energy for all the ministries they have, including Bright Light Ministry.

The Western center for Law & Policy is the nonprofit organization by one of our best friends, Dean Broyles. (We’re actually spending the 4th with him and his wife and kids.) You may be interested in their monthly newsletter that describe the religious rights cases he is fighting (and winning!). Last month Dean received national press attention when a case of a pastor being told by San Diego county that he needed a permit to have small group Bible studies in his home became national news. (The county dropped the case.)

Christian Military Fellowship is an association of believers who are committed to encouraging Men and Women in the United States Armed Forces, and their families, to love and serve the Lord Jesus Christ.  We are an indigenous ministry serving all elements of that society including all military services, all ranks, family members, civilian employees, all Christian denominations and traditions. Within the military society, our members, staff and constituents work to introduce people to Jesus Christ and help Christians to grow in faith.

Christian Military Wife Central is also a great site for women who can support one another during these difficult times.

Call 2 Fall is an effort to remind Christians of the scripture, “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”  (2 Chronicles 7:14). They are asking Christians all over the country to fall on their knees and kneel at least 3 to 5 minutes before the Lord wherever they may gather that day. Find out why our nation needs to fall to our knees.

In God We Trust Free Patriotic Christian Flash Movie
We’ve all heard how our founding fathers had a deep belief in Christ, but have you actually read some of their quotations lately? This video is a wonderful, goose-bumpy-feeling reminder of why the USA is blessed and why we should fall to our knees.


Happy 4th of July. I know many of you may be at home alone today and may not feel very “happy” but we do have much to be grateful for. I never like to comfort myself by thinking there is someone worse off than myself, but do remember today, that even if you are mad about your health insurance, frustrated with the government, or annoyed with your pastor, you have been give the gift of freedom to speak out about it and not end up in prison because of it. We have much to be grateful for.



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