What will YOU overcome?

I had to read a lot in college. I majored in english and minored in history. The books I read sometimes overlapped. Something I was learning about in a Literature class would show up on a History syllabus. One of my favorite passages is by the great abolitionist, Frederick Douglass. I was required to read his book, “Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave.” This popular quote out of his book still resonates with me, and many others:

“From my earliest recollection, I date the entertainment of a deep conviction that slavery would not always be able to hold me within its foul embrace; and in the darkest hours of my career in slavery, this living word of faith and spirit of hope departed not from me, but remained like ministering angels to cheer me through the gloom. This good spirit was from God, and to him I offer thanksgiving and praise.”

How does this relate to me? Well, it doesn’t – directly. But as a survivor, I can choose to take the “victim” mentality and not try to accomplish all I know I can! But like Douglas, who stood up for his rights, he even taught himself how to read and write, I have rights too. No one can put limits on my abilities because no one knows what God will do.

What Frederick Douglass wrote speaks to my soul, and it can speak to yours no matter what you’re going through. His confidence that he’d be freed from slavery, and his knowledge of God is parallel to my knowledge that God will set me free of any bondage in my body, thoughts, or predicament! Your challenge may be different from mine. How can you apply this passage by Frederick Douglass to your life? What are you confident about, and know you will overcome?

About Zina

Zina Hermez authored the book Not Without God: A Story of Survival and created the Spinal Injury Solutions! website. Zina works as an English as a Second Language Instructor and has been an educator for more than fifteen years. Her thousands of students have been from many parts of the world, and she writes articles on faith and overcoming challenges. Her stories have been featured in Christianity Today, guest posts, newsletters, medical journals and other publications. To learn more about Zina visit http://zinahermez.com

 

 

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Make Progress

The survivor, the victim, the recovering addict, the overcomer, and the high achiever all have a fear in common–going back! If you fit into any of these categories, I’m here to tell you that is not God’s purpose in your life. I know first hand.

When we survive or recover, we don’t have to fall into depression, or regress back into what was hindering us before. The suffix ‘Gress’ means to take a step. God does not want you to take a step back–He wants you to make PROGRESS! I don’t know who I’m writing this for, but I felt that someone needed to read it.

When Jesus raised a man from the dead (John 11), the man didn’t die soon after that. He lived a long time! When Paul the Apostle made the lame man to walk in Acts 3, he didn’t go back to lie in his bed when Paul left town!

You overcame because you fought. You accomplished because you worked hard. You withstood because you prayed. You got better because you worked on yourself. God will not take that away. You lose your blessings when you believe the lies that say you won’t amount to anything!

About Zina

Zina Hermez authored the book Not Without God: A Story of Survival and created the Spinal Injury Solutions! website. Zina works as an English as a Second Language Instructor and has been an educator for more than fifteen years. Her thousands of students have been from many parts of the world, and she writes articles on faith and overcoming challenges. Her stories have been featured in Christianity Today, guest posts, newsletters, medical journals and other publications. To learn more about Zina visit http://zinahermez.com.

 

How to Defeat Pain

When you are in a painful situation, you can’t always see past it to a better future. It can be difficult to feel that things will ever change. You don’t always see the light at the end of the tunnel, so to speak. But the pain will pass! Everything changes. You have to be gracious. You have to stay thankful. You have to wait.

I encourage you to do that. I am trying to stay thankful in the midst of some stressful situations. When I fall apart it does not help much. So stay strong. Resilience is key. It’s about bouncing back. Don’t get stuck in “woe is me.”

When you rise above those negative feelings you soon realize that you have conquered them. You’ve overcome. You come back to grace… You come back to peace…

A changed mind is a very powerful thing! ~Zina Hermez

About Zina

Zina Hermez authored the book Not Without God: A Story of Survival and created the Spinal Cord Injury Solutions! online website. Zina works as an English Language Instructor, and has been an educator for nearly fifteen years. Her thousands of students have been from many parts of the world, and she’s worked with all ages.

Zina writes articles on faith and overcoming disability, and her stories have been featured in Christianity Today, Spinal Cord Injury Zone, SCI Access, newsletters, and medical journals among many other various publications. To learn more about Zina visit http://zinahermez.com.

A Few Ways I Overcome Adversity

Tonight I’d like to give you a few tips on how you can deal with adversity, or any challenge you may be going through. These are simple methods that you can apply. I bet you’ve already practiced them before. You may be practicing them now. If not, tonight should hopefully reinforce them a little bit.

What are some difficulties we may face? Loss of employment, loss of a loved one, an accident, divorce, and children moving away from home only name a few, the list continues. Some may practice yoga, some may go away on a weekend retreat, and some may take a vacation.

But these are simple, daily things I do that I believe can also help you. My hope is that you receive something, and gain something positive. If only one of these tips help you, that would make me happy!

Daily Prayer – I talk to God daily. I sometimes read Bible verses and short prayers in the morning. If I can commit to just fifteen minutes a day of doing this, it really helps. I especially talk to God when it is quiet. That is when I can hear Him best, in feelings and in thoughts.

We can read the psalms. We can say the Lord’s prayer. We can light a candle. We can simply say “Amen.” We can thank Him throughout the day via a powerful form of prayer, praise.

Exercise – Exercise or physical therapy is something you should be doing at least a few times a week. If you do not need physical therapy, exercise is still priceless. Find a physical therapist or trainer that can design a safe but challenging program for you. Keeping an exercise log is a great way to track your progress!

In his book The Omni Diet: Lose up to 12 LBS in 2 weeks Dr. Daniel Amen says, “When you are ill or in the hospital, your energy demands go up four times and it is protein your body uses as fuel to repair itself. And muscle is your protein reserve. Studies show that the less muscle you have the less chance you have of a full recovery.”

There are more suggestions and tips I would like to give. And you will be hearing more about them in the upcoming weeks. Let me know if you have any ideas of other ways we can deal with obstacles in our lives. You can leave a note for me in the comments.

 

About Zina

Zina Hermez authored the book Not Without God: A Story of Survival and created the Spinal Cord Injury Solutions! on line website. Zina works as an English Language Instructor, and has been an educator for nearly fifteen years her thousands of students have been from many parts of the world and she’s worked with all ages.

Zina writes articles on faith and overcoming disability and her stories have been featured in Christianity Today, Spinal Cord Injury Zone, SCI Access, newsletters, and medical journals among many other various publications. To learn more about Zina visit http://zinahermez.com.