Showing posts with label faith. Show all posts
Showing posts with label faith. Show all posts

Thursday, November 25, 2021

Thankful God Had Plan B

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
November 25, 2021
When I was five years old, I had a fractured skull, concussion and head trauma. Aside from everything else, it caused a speech problem. Kids being kids, I was made fun of and limited what I said out loud. When I got older, it was easier to write instead of speak. My pen was my voice.

In my senior year of high school, my English teacher said I was a natural born writer. I wrote a speech for a national competition and it won first place. The thing was, I had to have one of my classmates read it because when I got nervous, words didn't come out right. My typewriter was my voice.

In 1982 I was introduced to the term Post Traumatic Stress Disorder when I fell in love with a Vietnam veteran. I had no way of knowing it at the time, but I had it too. My ex-husband tried to kill me and then stalked me for years. It helped me to understand what war did to my veteran. The more I learned, the more convinced I was that people needed to know about this. Writing was still my voice and I wrote to local newspapers.

In 1993, I got online and started to write about it on as many places as I could. My computer was my voice.

When I got older, a friend told me I missed my calling and should have become a preacher. The problem with that was, as a Greek Orthodox woman, that wasn't possible. I did not want to renounce my faith to join another church where my preaching would be welcomed. My computer was still my voice.

In 2002, I finished writing my first book on PTSD. For The Love Of Jack told our story and I wrote about the importance of our souls aiding in healing, I had to republish it in 2012.




My computer is still the voice I use most of all, but in today's world, it also because my way of speaking through videos.














One of the first videos I did was back in 2006. Coming Out Of The Dark. My video camera was my voice.
Why be afraid if you're not alone? Life is never easy, the rest is unknown. The song is by Gloria Estefan and the first time I heard it, all I could think about were the Vietnam veterans I spent so much time with including my husband. You are not alone fighting to heal PTSD just as you were not alone during combat.


All these later, almost forty of them, healing PTSD has used everything God planned for me as well as the pain others caused me.

This past summer, I was at a crossroad and not in a good way. After all these years, I had nothing new to say. I did the writing, research, created over 700 videos and had three books. I was depressed reading reports on PTSD and constantly seeing failure after failure, topped off with reporters never telling the whole story of the lives of survivors.

My faith in God was stronger than ever, but my faith in myself was at the lowest point in my life. I did what I usually do. I turned to God and prayed for a way to express what He taught me all these years. I wanted to give knowledge as much as I wanted to give hope.

God answered that prayer with The Lost Son.

Before I was done with this one, God delivered a second one to begin. Alive Again

Both book are like the Parable of The Lost Son because the main character was supposed to be a priest, but became a reporter. He walked away from God because he believed God walked away from him first. As with the lost son in the Bible, he went back to his Father and God rejoiced. He used Chris's talents and all the gifts he had to deliver messaged to the world that God still hears prayers and answers them through other people.

The stories involve veterans dealing with PTSD, but also everyone else trying to come to terms with being a survivor. I hope you find understanding and, above all else, hope that your life story is one that you determine and define. We are limited in what we can do but there are no limits on what God can do for us, and through us!

On this Thanksgiving Day, I am grateful for God's plan B for me! God gave me back my voice.

Wednesday, November 17, 2021

New Books To Help Churchless Children Of God Heal PTSD

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
November 17, 2021 

By the summer, it was getting more and more difficult to find anything new to say about #PTSD. After all, next year will be 40 years after I started. I was feeling pretty hopeless about helping anyone new, especially when the increase of people suffering showed no signs of going down. I mean, there is only so much a person can do. I needed a miracle to be able to say what needed to be said in a new way. 

The books I wrote are for other "churchless" children of God, like me. I don't go to church anymore, so I couldn't go into any kind of building, other than my own home. Considering that Jesus didn't have a church, early Christian prayed outside or in their own homes, I knew God could hear me no matter where I was, with them as examples. I prayed for a way to do it and put it into God's hands.

What came next was the story of The Lost Son based on the Parable.


The Parable of the Lost Son
11 Jesus continued: “There was a man who had two sons. 12 The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them.
13 “Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. 14 After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need. 15 So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs. 16 He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything.
17 “When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! 18 I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants.’ 20 So he got up and went to his father.
“But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.

21 “The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’
22 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. 23 Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. 24 For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate.
25 “Meanwhile, the older son was in the field. When he came near the house, he heard music and dancing. 26 So he called one of the servants and asked him what was going on. 27 ‘Your brother has come,’ he replied, ‘and your father has killed the fattened calf because he has him back safe and sound.’
28 “The older brother became angry and refused to go in. So his father went out and pleaded with him. 29 But he answered his father, ‘Look! All these years I’ve been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders. Yet you never gave me even a young goat so I could celebrate with my friends. 30 But when this son of yours who has squandered your property with prostitutes comes home, you kill the fattened calf for him!’
31 “‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. 32 But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’”
When we survive the events that cause Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, no matter what caused it, we often turn away from God. When you live your life trying to do the right thing, for the right reason, and end up subjected to what happened, it is human nature to wonder why it happened to you. I know I did, each and every time. There were ten of them for me. The thing that made surviving them different for me, was while I lost faith in myself, I didn't lose it when it came to God.

That faith helped heal me but it did not mean I was totally resilient. I had a rare form of it that was linked to my ex-husband. I suffered for decades until I found out he passed away and couldn't hurt me anymore. The only thing I had to fear was the dark side trying to pull me back in and stop me from walking in the light of God's love.

As I said, I prayed for a new way to say something that wasn't new. I thought I'd be writing one book but God had other plans for me too and gave me two books to write at the same time. 

Having faith in God and Jesus, does not mean we have to be perfect. The Lost Son and Alive Again are written in the language we all use as adults. In other words, there is swearing going on. They involved adult situations, including drinking alcohol and using drugs to stop feeling anything. The list of causes covers most of them. By the end of both books, God's love won!

The Lost Son begins on September 13, 2019 and ends in 2020. Alive Again begins on September 13, 2021. The events are in Salem, MA and fictional town of Gabriel, New Hampshire. The number 13 plays an important part of both books but you'll have to read them to discover why that is. 

Monday, November 15, 2021

God still answers prayers, and people deliver His miracles!

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
November 15, 2021

Two new books are up on Amazon! As hard as it was to write two at the same time, it is a lot harder for far too many people with #PTSD.  We all see to focus on just veterans when that is the subject, but that is only because reporters never focus on the survivors of the events they cover. I thought it was time for someone to tell the stories of the rest of us. I also thought it was time to let people know that they can put their darkest days behind them and start walking in the light of God's love. After all, He didn't send harm our way, people did. Other people do what He asks them to do and they come to help us heal.

Think about whatever caused your PTSD and then think about the people who came to help you survive it. That is how it works when you are trying to survive surviving itself. There are people out there who will help you heal and live a happier life. Most of the time, they only thing they want back from you, is for you to pass it on to someone else in need.

I hope with these two books, you'll see that God still answers prayers, and people deliver His miracles!

 THE LOST SON
The scars on his body were reminders of what he survived but the scars in his soul were reminders of why he didn’t want to anymore. The condo in LA with his office covered with awards, was no longer his and he was living in a studio apartment back in Salem Massachusetts. His marriage ended when his ex-wife tried to kill him and then stalked him. All his friends were out of his life except his favorite bartender at a local bar.
Chris thought everyone he knew burned down the bridges between them and him. He couldn’t see he was the one with all the matches and his friends were trying to find the firehose. He was right about one thing. Seven years was too long for him to be suffering instead of healing, but God had other plans for him. That night, Chris was sent on a mission to save himself and millions of others when he discovered a secretive society changing the world one soul at a time.
ALIVE AGAIN
Chris spent the last two years walking in the light and did not want to go back into the darkness he had been in for seven years. He learned to secret to healing PTSD was to see beyond the pain others caused, and finally see what miracles bring to survivors. God agreed Chris should stop suffering and start to change the world. As a reporter covering the worst that people do, he used his skills and experience to report on what people do after reporters move onto the next story. As a best selling author, he proved people want God to get as much attention as Satan does.

Thursday, November 11, 2021

Who knows PTSD better than veterans?

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
November 11, 2021

The Lost Son is live today and I couldn't think of a better day to do this, because it is Veterans Day!


Who knows PTSD better than veterans? Three veterans saved the main character's life. He was just a reporter, doing his job covering the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. His best friend Bill Gibson. joined the Army right out of high school while Chris Papadopoulos went to college to study journalism. 

After September 11, 2001, he did everything possible to be assigned to where Bill was deployed. Bill's buddy, David Mac Donald was side by side with Bill during every deployment too. The other veteran who knew what PTSD did, was a Vietnam veteran. The three of them, along with others joined forces to not just save Chris, but went on to change the way people look at PTSD. no matte what the caused it.

Seven years after a bomb blast in Afghanistan nearly ended Chris's life, he was still wishing it had finished the job instead of beginning an endless cycle of suffering. First came the scars on his body Then came the scars in his soul. His marriage to Bill's sister ended when she started to abuse him, and then tried to kill him. His career ended because he was getting more and more miserable because he wasn't able to do his job anymore. He drank more and ended up moving back to Salem Massachusetts from LA, no longer reporting for a major news paper, he was reduced to writing greeting cards.

The only friend he thought he had left was his bartender, Ed Hamilton.

On September 13, 2019, seven years after the blast, he was fighting with himself and wanted to just give up. He went back to the bar to say good-by to Ed and then miracles started walking back into his life. In thirteen days, he went from wanting to end his own life, to giving hope to millions around the world by letting them know miracles not only still happen, but they happen when we least expect them to.

If you are interested in a print copy of this, I'm working on it but it took all day to get this up. It will be coming soon. It will also be followed up by Alive Again, the second part to this. I hope they give you hope and a better understanding of how your lives can change for the better.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Finding miracles in Wounded Times

Inspirational reminders of miracles


PTSD Patrol
Stories from Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
May 13, 2020

With all the bad news in this country because of COVID-19, it is easy to become depressed. Social media has been spreading the bad news, division along with outright lies. Hopelessness follows.

But within the pages of friends sharing thoughts, there are messages of hope, love, humor, inspiration and miracles. Hope is fueled.

I take more comfort knowing there are people out there trying to make our days better than they would have been, than those constantly focusing on the negative.

A couple of days ago, I started searching the web for stories on miracles for a book I was planning on writing. In all honesty, I was searching to help my own mood as well.

Then it dawned on me that out of over 32,000 posts on Wounded Times, there is a treasure trove of miracles intended to fuel hope.

I opted to drop the book idea and decided to put the posts up here until I run out of them. Judging by the ones already discovered, that should take a long time to happen.
read it here

Here is the first one that just went up on PTSD Patrol
For those I love I will sacrifice

PTSD Patrol
Story from Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
May 13, 2020

One of the first post I put up on my views of faith, was in September 2007. To lay down his life for the sake of his friends posted September 26, 2007. Almost 900 people read it and shared it, plus 1,200+ subscribers sent it along with 90 followers. 

Do you think God abandoned you still? Come on and admit that while you were in the center of the trauma, you either felt the hand of God on your shoulder, or more often, never felt further from Him. In natural disasters, we pray to God to protect us. Yet when it's over we wonder why He didn't make the hurricane hit someplace else or why the tornadoes came and destroyed what we had while leaving the neighbors house untouched. We wonder why He heals some people while the people we love suffer. It is human nature to wonder, search for answers and try to understand.

In times of combat, it is very hard to feel anything Godly. Humans are trying to kill other humans and the horrors of wars become an evil act. The absence of God becomes overwhelming. We wonder how a loving God who blessed us with Jesus, would allow the carnage of war. We wonder how He could possibly forgive us for being a part of it. For soldiers, this is often the hardest personal crisis they face.

They are raised to love God and to be told how much God loves them. For Christians, they are reminded of the gift of Jesus, yet in moments of crisis they forget most of what Jesus went through.

Here are a few lessons and you don't even have to go to church to hear them.


And you can find the miracle that came afterwards....
April 18, 2008 I wrote the post PTSD Is Not God's Judgement to go along with the video. The video was put back up in 2015.
There is suddenly a lot of talk about "moral injury" and combat PTSD. It is survivor's guilt adding to what is known as PTSD but unlike other causes of PTSD, this one is harder to heal from. The good news is, you were not judged by God but He has put what you need to heal already in your soul. It is our job to connect you to it again. Contact Point Man International Ministries to show you the way.

Monday, May 4, 2020

"A Few Good Angels" and other miracles

Collection of miracles


Veterans Voice: Vietnam vet says divine intervention spared him
Providence Journal
By Mary K. Talbot, Special to The Journal
Posted May 3, 2020

Retired Sgt. Mike Montigny, 74
Seven years ago, he had just finished a round of golf. His partners on the course included old friends and some new acquaintances. One guest noticed the well-worn ring from Vietnam still on sitting on Montigny’s finger and with encouragement, Montigny shared his story with that newcomer, Ed Iannuccilli, former CEO of Rhode Island Hospital.

Later Iannuccilli would observe, “Churches are made out of wood, brick mortar and stone. Priests are human beings just like you and I. What happened to you is something spiritual that we can’t explain. Angels appear in all shapes and forms.”

Stories from Vietnam started flooding Montigny’s memory bank and Iannuccilli inspired him to begin chronicling those experiences. Soon the stories became chapters which turned into an inspirational book, “A Few Good Angels,” that Montigny published in 2016.

Mike Montigny left for Vietnam in 1965 and he attributes his unlikely return journey as one made possible only with divine interventions. Montigny was a survivor. Defying all predictions he made it “to hell and back” as a machine gunner for the U.S. Marines and lived to share his story.


Jason F. Wright: What you're about to read is a miracle or an odds-smashing coincidence
Northern Virginia Daily
Jason Wright
May 2, 2020
I asked Tyson what he learned from this memorable and moving moment on a morning train. “This was a real reminder to me of how personal and tangible God’s love is for each of us,” he said. “God is so aware of our circumstances. She may have been a stranger, but in reality, she was actually my sister. I know God works through His children, and what a cool chance it was for me to be an instrument for Him.”


'Absolute miracle': NYC surgeon, 74, beats 'severe form' of coronavirus with help of 3 doctor sons
FOX
Celeb Parke
May 1, 2020
Dr. Manuel Bulauitan, 74, is thanking everyone involved, especially his three sons, who are all doctors. They rushed to his side after their family noticed on FaceTime in mid-March that Bulauitan was sick.
Dr. Manuel C Bulauitan recovering on the medical floor after downgrading from the ICU. (Courtesy of Philippe Bulauitan)
"I am grateful that I'm here and my deepest thanks to all the medical professionals – from attending doctors and nurses – [they] are deep in my heart," Bulauitan told Fox News over the phone. "They tell me it's a miracle I survived."


Thursday, April 9, 2020

What we do now will show what we truly are, a curse on the earth or blessing to all

Let this be my solemn vow


Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
April 9, 2020

The world is in crisis now. The Coronavirus pandemic does not acknowledge national borders and has crossed over all the world. It strikes old and young, male and female.



Each nation has experienced great sadness. Some people have used this for their own sake. They have taken all they could, leaving many with nothing. They did not care if they spread death or not.

Yet all nations have also experienced acts of great kindness and compassion. When some risk their own lives so others may live. The list is long and worthy of so much more than simple expressions. When this is over, the world will be forever changed by what we do right here and right now.

When this season of misery is over, those who decided to take, shall be known for what they truly are and condemned for taking pleasure out of the suffering they caused.

When this season of misery is over, those who decided to give, shall be known for what they truly are and treasured for all they were willing to do for the sake of others.

When this season of misery is over, they will mourn for those they could not save and we shall comfort them.
"Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted."
When this is over, the rich who used this time for their own profit shall be known for what they truly are.
Proverbs 22:16
Whoever oppresses the poor to increase his own wealth, or gives to the rich, will only come to poverty.
The rich, who decided to use their wealth to help others, will be known for what they truly are.
Proverbs 19:17
Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for his deed.
All of us will be judged for what we truly are.

James 2
5 Listen, my dear brothers and sisters! Didn’t God choose poor people in the world to become rich in faith and to receive the kingdom that he promised to those who love him?
6 Yet, you show no respect to poor people. Don’t rich people oppress you and drag you into court?
7 Don’t they curse the good name of Jesus, the name that was used to bless you?
And those who did whatever they could for the sake of others, shall be known for what they truly are.
We Show Our Faith by What We Do
14 My brothers and sisters, what good does it do if someone claims to have faith but doesn’t do any good things? Can this kind of faith save him?
15 Suppose a believer, whether a man or a woman, needs clothes or food
16 and one of you tells that person, “God be with you! Stay warm, and make sure you eat enough.” If you don’t provide for that person’s physical needs, what good does it do?
17 In the same way, faith by itself is dead if it doesn’t cause you to do any good things.
Let us know who shall be blessed when this misery passes and let this be our solum vow, "to take this moment and live each moment" choosing to be defined by what we can be....worthy.

Matthew 5 The Beatitudes Introduction to the Sermon on the Mount
5 Now when Jesus saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him,
2 and he began to teach them.
He said:
3 Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
4 Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
5 Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.
6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
7 Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
8 Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.
9 Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
10 Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
11 “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.
12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

Let There Be Peace on Earth
Let there be peace on earth
And let it begin with me

Let There Be Peace on Earth
The peace that was meant to be
With God as our Father
Brothers all are we
Let me walk with my brother
In perfect harmony.
Let peace begin with me
Let this be the moment now.
With ev'ry step I take
Let this be my solemn vow
To take each moment and live
Each moment in peace eternally
Let there be peace on earth
And let it begin with me
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Jill Jackson / Sy Miller
Let There Be Peace on Earth lyrics © Mccg LLC

Friday, April 3, 2020

"...persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed"

"Commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God"


In times of trouble such as these, it can be hard to find hope. It is so much easier to find misery. The thing is, hope surrounds us even though we are reluctant to see it.

I love to see reports of regular people rising above their own pain, fears and concerns, to take care of total strangers. They exemplify what true heroes are.

We are called to rise above our circumstances at the moment because we know we may be "...persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed" because we are not alone in any of these times of trouble.


2 Corinthians 4 New International Version (NIV)
Present Weakness and Resurrection Life

Therefore, since through God’s mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart.

2 Rather, we have renounced secret and shameful ways; we do not use deception, nor do we distort the word of God. On the contrary, by setting forth the truth plainly we commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God.

3 And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing.

4 The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.

5 For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake.

6 For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,”[a] made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.

7 But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.

8 We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair;

9 persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.

10 We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.

11 For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may also be revealed in our mortal body.

12 So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you.

13 It is written: “I believed; therefore I have spoken.” Since we have that same spirit of  faith, we also believe and therefore speak,

14 because we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you to himself.

15 All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God.

16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.

17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.

18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

What was God doing on 9 11?

Where was God before the Towers fell?

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
September 11, 2019

After reading about a firefighter being identified all these years later,  I was thinking about how God was in so many places on 9 11 before the Twin Towers fell.

He was there when the firefighters rushed into the buildings so they could save lives after the Towers were hit. He was there when workers were helping each other find their way out of danger. He was there when total strangers helped the wounded make their way to getting medical care, and be there to just offer a shoulder.

He was there before the South Tower fell at 9:59 and still there as people in the North Tower were trying to save lives before it fell at 10:28 am.

God was there before the passengers decided to fight the hijackers on Flight 93 causing it to crash at 10:03 am.

Thirty-seven phone calls were made by 13 persons on board the plane between the time of the hijacking at 9:28 am and the time of the crash at 10:03 am.
He was there all along. Whenever we witness someone doing anything for the sake of others, He is there.

I was going to write a long piece until I came upon something I had already written.


Looking for God in the wrong places 
by Chaplain Kathie
Wounded Times Blog
September 12, 2012

Last night I was watching The Four Crosses at Ground Zero.
"As rescue and recovery began, fireman, police, and rescue workers would be forced to endure the nightmare of working and living inside Ground Zero. Minutes turned into hours, hours turned into hopelessness as the reality of what had happened sunk in. While working in Building 6 in the World Trade Center complex, workers discovered a cavernous type hole in the debris."

As I listened to some of the people there, while I thought it was a beautiful story, I kept thinking of what was missing from the program.


It is easy to wonder where God was on that horrible day as other people decided such evil acts were justified when they used everything in their power to kill. Where was He? Why didn't He stop it? How could a loving God allow it to happen?


We ask those questions all the time. We suffer in our lives, then try to figure out why God thought we deserved it. What did we do to make Him turn away from us?


If we search for Him in the dirt and debris we are looking for Him in the wrong place.


God was on those planes that hit the Twin Towers and the Pentagon as much as he was on the plane that crashed in Pennsylvania. He was not the pilot but He was the comforter. When one hand reached out to comfort someone else, He was right there. Whenever people push past thoughts for themselves to think of someone else, He is there.


Many wonder why He didn't just cause the hijackers to suffer a heart attack an spare so many innocent lives. Others wonder why He just didn't stop them from doing it. The truth is in the Bible that God does not interfere with freewill so He would not have just snatched the hijackers out of their seats. Still how do we know He didn't try to get them to change their hearts?



It is natural for us to ask what caused other humans to do such horrible things but we miss the other question about what causes so many to do compassionate things afterwards.

What caused the police and firefighters to rush into the buildings after pure evil struck them? What caused them to climb the stairs over and over again trying to save as many lives as possible after others tried to kill as many as possible?



While the evil that man does is apparent, the good they do is inherent. It was not just public employees risking their lives that day, there were average citizens in the Towers thinking of others instead of their own lives. Some of them could have survived had they used the time they had to think of their own lives, but they had the lives of others in their thoughts and actions. It was God driving them to do for others and they had the freewill choice to allow His voice to guide them or not.

But then there were smaller miracles. Survivors reached out to help others. Strangers took the hands of other strangers, put their arms around people they would have normally just walked past under normal circumstances. Then people rushed to the area to give whatever help they could.


Days passed while more and more people showed up to help find survivors and recover bodies. God was still there hearing the prayers of the nation and comforting the weary as they refused to leave.


Families of the missing were comforted by others while the time of hope faded into thinking of funerals for when the remains were found.


Every street across the country became decorated with flags and so did our cars. We were all thinking of others glued to our TV sets and reminded to be kinder to other people.


Even members of Congress joined together on the steps side by side. And we know it took a miracle to do that.


Whenever we look for God in what has been lost, we miss where He was all along.

*******
This is the story that caused this post
A firefighter killed on September 11 is identified 18 years later


CNN
By Faith Karimi
September 11, 2019

(CNN)A firefighter who died on September 11 was laid to rest Tuesday after his remains were identified 18 years later.
Michael Haub comforts his mother, Erika Starke, as they attend a funeral service for his father, firefighter Michael Haub.


Firefighters and loved ones gathered to mourn Michael Haub after his remains were conclusively identified, the Uniformed Firefighters Association said in a statement. It said the service was to provide his family with closure and a peace of mind after the medical examiner last week identified more of his remains that were recovered at Ground Zero.

As of July this year, the remains of only about 60% of the 2,753 people killed at the World Trade Center that day have been positively identified, according to the medical examiner's office.

Haub was a 13-year veteran of Ladder Company 4, according to the association.

"We remember him and the 342 other firefighters who perished that fateful day, and will be forever grateful for the courage they show," it said in a statement Tuesday.

In addition to the firefighters killed that day, hundreds more have died in the following years. New York officials say an additional 200 firefighters have lost their lives from illnesses linked to their time working at the World Trade Center after the terror attacks on September 11, 2001.
read it here

Monday, February 18, 2019

Help Herbie, WW2 Veteran, Dying Wish Come True

Fundraiser Underway to Help 96-Year-Old WWII Veteran Live Final Days at Home Care Facility


Faithwire
February 18, 2019
Friends of Gordon’s set up a GoFundMe campaign called “Herbie WW2 Veterans Dying Wish” to help cover the costs. It had raised more than $11,000 of the $35,712 goal as of the weekend.

A community is trying to give back to a hero who served this country by ensuring he gets to live his final days comfortably in the home care facility where he spent the last years with his late wife.
World War II U.S. Army veteran Herb Gordon, 96, has had multiple brushes with death, the latest being in 2017, when he broke his neck while volunteering at a medical center, he told WPBF-TV.
“They were so certain I was going to die on the operating table, but I had my family here and God listened,” Gordon said of his caretakers at the Atria Senior Living Facility in Lantana, Florida. “And here I am.”
read more here

Sunday, January 13, 2019

In the shelter of your arms

You are my shelter

Combat PTSD Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
January 13, 2019

An open letter to Jesus

This is a very hard time for me because it seems no matter what I do, what I know and how much work I do, others get praised, even if they are thieves passing my work off as their own.

I have no power to stop them. I have no power to make anyone listen to what I have to say. The only power I have is to do whatever I can to help whoever seeks it.

You know what is in my heart and I know that the gifts I have came from you. You guide me to seek knowledge and share what is truth. You give me courage to bypass fear of the powerful for the sake of the flock. You arm me in spite of those who ignore all you equipped me to do.

You are my shelter. 
Psalm 91 1 Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
2 I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”
3 Surely he will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence.
4 He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
5 You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day,
6 nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday.
Psalm 91


You brought me into my veteran Father's home and surrounded me with other veterans. You brought me into my veteran husband's heart and showed me what pure love is, as well as the pain I saw in his eyes. 

Then You showed me what it was like to go beyond the times of darkness, so we could walk the rest of this journey together, still holding hands and loving the way our lives have grown beyond what others thought was even possible.

You know the hours, the heartache and you know what it is like for me when someone reminds me of why I do what I do.

You had put a voice within me that I used to gladly sing, but those years have passed and while there has been a song in my soul, it has not passed my lips because there has been too much pain within me.

So now I sing a song for You beyond the tears that came because I know, if I share this with those I am supposed to reach, they may know that others go through the same dark times, even if they believe, as I do, that nothing is beyond Your love. 
The Shelter of Your Arms
Neil Diamond 
In this cold world
No matter where I go
The crowds are all the same
To them I'm just
A pebble in the sand
A face without a name
Nobody gives a hang
For what I say or do
But you
And in the shelter of your arms
I find peace and comfort and care
For I am wanted there
In this cold world
You struggle to survive
And sometimes
You can fall
You think someone
Would lend a helping hand
They'd sooner see you crawl
But just when life itself
Seems more than I can bear
You're there
And in the shelter of your arms
I can find strength and safety and then
I rise and start again
Just give me one good reason
To go on living
To keep on trying
For what I ask you, for what
If not for you
And all your love to see me through
But just when life itself
Seems more than I can bear
You're there
And in the shelter of your arms
I can find strength and safety
And then
I rise and start again

Monday, January 29, 2018

God grant me peace with memories of yesterday

A Prayer For Heroes
Combat PTSD Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
January 29, 2018

God grant me peace with memories of yesterday.

Courage to face what comes knowing I can make a difference this day.

Hope that tomorrow will be a better day.

Yesterday is gone. I cannot change what has been.

Help me do the best I can today and tomorrow, begin again.

You created me to be able to help others.

Help me to accept help from others.

You created within me courage to do what had to be done.

Help me to ask for help when the one in need is this one.

You surrounded me with people who would die for me.

Help me trust them with my heart so they may see the wound within me.

Let me accept help so that I may continue to 
do for others as you created me to do.
Kathie Costos 
©2018

When I think about regular people, like me, losing hope to the point where they commit suicide, it is heartbreaking. 

Hope is what keeps all of us from giving up this life we have. Often it is not enough to love others, if we feel as if we do not deserve to be loved.

There was a time in my life when I felt that way. While I did not attempt suicide, I prayed that God would to it for me. I lost hope, a sense of self worth, but above those, I lost faith that God even cared about me.

When the people committing suicide were those who dedicated their lives to saving others, it is beyond heartbreaking.

If you are among those in the military, veterans, police, firefighters and first responders, please read the prayer I wrote for you because after all these years of working with some of you, that is what I see within all of you!


Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Defeating PTSD Demons by Faith

Do You Still Battle Against Demons Unarmed?
Combat PTSD Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
October 24, 2017

You may have been deluded up to this point and think the number of veterans committing suicide are just OEF and OIF veterans. You may have been convinced that only they suffer PTSD because of the stupid commercial talking about veterans being forgotten right after listing what PTSD had been called UP TO THE 70'S but they leave that part out too.

God still knows they are there even if you close your eyes.

If you want to help veterans stay alive, you better come prepared to fight for them. Considering what true demon defeaters are facing, we need all the help we can get.


You need to know what we're actually dealing with beginning with the enemy within them.

The rates of veterans batteling PTSD are: 15% currently diagnosed from Vietnam with 30% had PTSD in their lifetime. Gulf War veterans, 12%. OEF and OIF veterans between 11% and 20%. 

According the Department of Veterans Affairs, there were 16,962,000 combat veterans living after older wars as of April 2017 out of 23,244,583. 4,444,533 Veterans receiving service connected disability benefits with the majority of these veterans from prior to Afghanistan and Iraq. 

Also according to the VA, the majority of the veterans committing suicide are also from those previous wars, 65% are over the age of 50.

While so many want to run around the country pulling stunts, we're lifting them up. When they are talking about numbers, we're rescuing souls. When they are dismissing importance of the spiritual connection, we're standing by their side.

If you think there are not that many veterans with a religious affiliation, you have been deluded by people who do not know what they are talking about.

A fabulous report, yet again, from the VA, is a list of veterans believing in God and breaks it down by faith groups and states. About 19 million claim to be affiliated, while 1,198,391 are listed as "unknown."  

The three largest veteran populations listed under faith are California with 1,711,106, Texas with 1,592,385 and Florida with 1,472,665.

If you still want to dismiss spiritual healing as a way to prevent suicides, then please find something else to do with your time. "The harvest is plenty, but workers are few" and users outnumber the rest of us.



"Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give."

In the 70's Vietnam veterans began the battle for the healing PTSD and it was known back then that is has to be done with by treating the three parts of the veteran. Mind-body and spirit. Too many want to dismiss the spiritual because they do not understand it, and fear it.

Last time the Constitution was read it still had the words that "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

If you are really trying to help them, then first understand, they are not suffering because of God. They are suffering because of the Demon telling them what they did wrong so they forget WHY THEY WERE WILLING TO DIE IN THE FIRST PLACE and that was to save lives.


Sunday, October 1, 2017

Burnette Chapel Church Of Christ Fellowship Unbroken Faith

Nashville church tries to move forward amid shooting trauma, questions
USA Today
Holly Meyer
September 30, 2017
"I sat out here. It was early Monday morning and I was looking up and I could see Orion's Belt," Carter said. "I mean just how great — don’t understand why — but how great God truly is." Terry Carter
The sound of gunfire haunts Terry Carter.

She and the young students in her Bible class barricaded a classroom door one week ago as a masked man opened fire at Burnette Chapel Church of Christ, killing one woman and injuring the minister and six others, police said.

The shooter did not go into the classroom, but the Sunday morning mayhem clings to Carter's thoughts.

"You can’t get some of the stuff out of your head for a while," Carter said. "I’ll gradually get there. But those sounds. The pop."

Carter and other members of the small Antioch church are trying to process what happened in the violent attack. In the midst of the pain and big unanswered questions, the congregation is moving forward.

The crime scene tape is gone and so is the carpet in the chapel. The 25-year-old suspect, Emanuel Samson, is in jail on a homicide charge. They have buried 38-year-old Melanie Crow, who was gunned down at the end of last week's service. And the victims who remain in the hospital are in stable condition.

After the Wednesday night service ended, Carter stood in the church parking lot chatting. Her great-grandchildren played nearby.

"It’s kind of a relief that we can get together and have a fellowship," Carter said. "That’s what we’re supposed to do, have fellowship and encourage each other. It’s going to take a whole lot of encouragement."

She was not certain the Wednesday service would occur nor that she would want to attend Sunday. But Carter will be there equipped with plans for better classroom safety.

She remembers hearing the first shot. It sounded too close. Carter put her finger to her lips, told the children to be quiet and turned off the classroom lights. Together, they moved furniture in front of a door and she cycled through scenarios in her mind.

Carter has her own questions. She knows nothing is guaranteed in life, but her faith is strong and she believes God is everywhere, Carter said.
read more here

Andrew Nelles
Kaitlyn Adams, a member of the Burnette Chapel Church of Christ, hugs another church member at the scene after shots were fired at the church on Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017, in Antioch, Tenn. (Andrew Nelles/The Tennessean via AP)

Tennessee church suspect may have sought Charleston revenge