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August/September 2013


Dr Cris Beer

Joins The Biggest Loser Team

How Healthy is Your Thinking? Join our thought detox forum!

A Basket Full of Goodies - Great treats to enjoy!


Authors of The Marriage Code Bill & Pam Farrel


Rebuild ing Bunda berg Life

after Oswald2013 | 1 | August/September

Indulge eMagazine is part of the iluvthoseshoes Project which seeks to empower women in their journey through life by resourcing them, spirit, soul and body. Empower = make more confident; to give authority Resource = source of help; solutions to problems


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Anita Henderson

Website Development

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The Cover

Cover: Dr Cris Beer Photography: NMEDIA.COM.AU


Catherine Johnsen

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Dr Cris Beer Kate Bishop Emma Corney Shannon Crozier Gina Hamilton Anita Henderson Candice Schmidt Charissa Steffens Kirsten Willams


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EQUIPPING LEADERS CREATING THE FUTURE You and Your team are invited to join

Church Volunteers Non Profit Education Government & Business Leaders The Global Leadership summit is a unique event featuring world class leading edge input from influential leaders, thinkers and practitioners from Churches and Christian Organisations, Business, Academia and the Arts. The Global Leadership Summit fuels the passion and sharpens leadership thinking and skills as we strive to create the future that God has imagined for our world.


World-class speakers presented via videocast GEN COLIN POWELL


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Indulge | August/September 2013 | 5

From the Editor...


veryone faces challenges in their life. Challenges range from the mundane, like simply getting out the door each day with the school bags and (hopefully) the children; to the more serious, life draining experiences, of sickness and loss.

T PRINs in issue 4 201

This is Indulge’s 22nd issue and we are constantly blessed and encouraged by the wonderful feedback that we get from you, our family of readers. We are often asked to take Indulge to print, so that it can be shared among even more women. So we are very happy to announce that from 2014, Indulge will step into the new adventure of becoming a print magazine. We will keep you posted about how this will work, so make sure you are subscribed online at to find out what our exciting plans for the future are.

Recently, a family friend passed away, unexpectedly, and I was left shocked and saddened for those closest to this person. Their passing made me pause and remember the devasting effects of loss. Loss happens all around us, sometimes from afar and sometimes it is so close, so intimate, that we cannot breathe. This issue of Indulge is dedicated to those whose lives have been marked by loss, in whichever shape it has taken. While we can’t avoid our lives intersecting with these moments, we can learn to lean into God and allow Him to hold our hand and walk through the journey with us.

One change that will take place, from this point forward, is that Indulge will become a quarterly magazine. We will still have our regular weekly blogs on our website from the many beautiful women in our world, and of course, all our past issues will be available for you to browse through. We will maintain an online presence as well as growing into print.

The Holy Spirit is also known in the Greek as the Parakletos – one who comes along side. In John 14:16 Jesus tells his followers, “I will pray to the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever.” Jesus does not promise us that we will avoid difficult times when we become His followers. He instead gave us One who would nurture, heal, restore, rebuild and be ever present.

Love Charissa xx

As you read through our collection of stories this issue, draw strength from each one. Remember the gift of the Holy Spirit and allow Him to take you by the hand and heal well.


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Thank you for your wonderful support of Indulge and we look forward to sharing the journey ahead together.







A Life’s Journey {08} Anita Henderson

A Church Full of Mums, Aunties & Sisters Emma Corney {26} Ya Gotta Have Faith {32}


Shannon Crozier

Spring Dreams {60}

Candice Schmidt

Healer’s Heart {64}

Destined to Prosper {36}

Tanya Epis


Dr Cris & The Biggest Loser

The Marriage Code {42} Bill & Pam Farrel Interview

How Healthy is Your Thought Life? {48} Kate Bishop

Be Your Own Doctor {66} Dr Cris Beer

A Basket Full of Goodies {68} Angela Frost

After the Rain - Rebuilding Bundaberg {52} Kirsten Williams

Book Reviews {56} Gina Hamilton

Indulge | August/September 2013 | 7

STOP FOR At Indulge, we believe that every person matters and

“Safety and security don’t just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear.”
 Nelson Mandela

Human Trafficking… IT’S NOT OK! In Cambodia, the SHE Rescue Home exists as a safehaven for girls aged 5 to 16 who have been trafficked, raped, prostituted or at-risk of any of these things. The reality is that slavery still thrives. It now encompasses people of all race, colour and age and has a new name - human trafficking. It robs people of all dignity, hope and a future.

There are an estimated 27 million slaves in the world today. This is more than twice the number of people taken from Africa during the entire trans-Atlantic slave trade. Today’s slaves are not bought and sold at public auctions, nor do their owners hold legal title to them; yet they are just as trapped, controlled and brutalized as the slaves in our history books. For more information on the She Rescue Home visit their website at

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R THE ONE we love to support organisations that stop for the one.

Shine’s Reach: Over 30 nations Over 1000 organisations Estimated participation of over 20,000 girls and women Outreaches to refuges, schools, ethnic groups, religious groups, rural communities, indigenous communities, correctional centres, war-torn countries, girls homes and so forth Translated into seven languages

“I believe the seeds of greatness are within us all. The key is in creating the correct environment for them to then surface into reality” – Bobbie Houston Since 1997, the SHINE and STRENGTH programs have been unique personal development and group mentoring tools that use an inspirational, practical and experiential approach to learning. These programs are founded upon the premise that every life counts and has intrinsic value and fosters an awareness of this belief. As a result, individuals are equipped to become effective global citizens for the future.

For more information on the Shine Programs visit

Indulge | August/September 2013 | 9

Spirit 10 |

A Life’s Journey

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A Life’s Jou Words:Anita Henderson Images: Natasha Smith NSP Studio Photography Hair & Makeup: Tanya Epis


grew up in a small, close knit family consisting of my mum, dad, older sister and myself. From a young age my mum, my sister and I went to church. Dad preferred to stay home, read the paper and enjoy some time for himself. As I entered my early 20’s, I never imagined the challenges my family were to face over the next 12 years. However, I also could never have imagined God’s faithfulness, graciousness and goodness during our darkest days. In July 2000 at the age of 22, my then 26 year old sister Karyn was diagnosed with a benign brain tumour that required immediate life-saving surgery. Specialists informed her how incredibly serious the surgery would be. She was told that if she did survive the operation her life would never be the same again. This news rocked our family. At the time Karyn was a young mum to a gorgeous one year old boy. All we could do was pray and cry out to God for a miracle. I had never previously experienced this level of tough in my life and it drew me into a deeper place with God. Miraculously, she came through the surgery,

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surprising even the specialists. She had to learn to talk and walk again and Dad would daily walk her through the hospital corridors. After only six weeks in hospital she was able to come home. It was a miracle. As a family unit we were quite traumatised by the unexpected challenge we had already faced. At that time I had the erroneous belief that there would only be one sickness per family per lifetime, especially if they were a ‘good’ Christian family. However we were soon to be rocked by another wave of sickness, attacking our family. In April 2002, two years after Karyn’s surgery, Dad was diagnosed with an aggressive type of prostate cancer. Surgery, radiation and monthly tests became the norm. It was during this tough time though that Dad’s heart really softened to the things of God and he started regularly coming to church and made a commitment to the Lord. I spent almost a year in the Philippines on missions and was regularly updated on Dad’s progress.


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On my return from the Philippines my sister was informed that another brain tumour had begun to develop and that it would need to be closely monitored with MRI’s. We continued to pray and believe God for a miracle. Around this time I met and fell in love with the man who became my husband. I asked him if he was sure he wanted to do life with me as my life was pretty messy. He did and as we planned our wedding one of my greatest prayers was that my dad would be here to walk me down the aisle. I remember so clearly the day Karyn, mum and I prepared our wedding invitations. We were at the Wesley hospital because Karyn needed stereotactic radiotherapy treatment. With a ‘crown’ screwed into her forehead we cut and glued invitations. Meanwhile, Dad was in a room close by receiving his radiation treatment. They were tough days. Dad went through eight weeks of radiation treatment and finished the Friday before our wedding. God answered my prayer and he did walk me down the aisle. Sadly he passed the following year after a six year battle with cancer. My sister’s specialists continued to monitor her brain tumour and in September 2011 it was decided that it would be necessary to operate the following year. We were all devastated by this news. Karyn was especially upset that Dad would not be there to hold her hand and teach her to walk again. In December 2011 she was rushed to St Andrew’s emergency department with a significant brain bleed. So here we were back at St Andrew’s Hospital, our lives looking very different to how they did 12 years earlier. I now had a two year old little girl and a husband, mum was widowed and Karyn’s son was now a teenager. 

Anita 14 |

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Karyn was admitted to Intensive Care and for the first three weeks she was critical. Each day we would sit by her bed side not knowing if this would be her last. She was ventilated, non-responsive and unrecognisable. The specialists knew they had to operate but they were waiting for some sign of improvement. Finally it was decided that they would operate on the 23rd December as it was her only hope. On the morning of the surgery we were pulled aside and told it didn’t look like surgery was a viable option anymore. The specialist would run one last test and then inform us of their decision. After hours of waiting, feeling like this was the end, they went ahead with the surgery and miraculously she did survive. Once again we had hope in our hearts; God had done a miracle in her life 12 years earlier and we knew He could do it again.  However days turned into weeks and weeks into months and Karyn was not the same. She did not recover like her first surgery due to significant brain damage and complications. There was some limited movement from the neck down and there were times when she was able to communicate and interact but the majority of time she was in a sleep like state. Day after day we sat with her and prayed. We were definitely on an emotional roller coaster. 

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There were days where Karyn seemed to be making some progress forward but then she would rapidly decline. There were many times we rushed to the hospital to say our final goodbyes. The situation at times felt overwhelming. In one of these dark hours I remember driving to a women’s meeting at my church and clearly telling God that He was not good and listing off all the reasons why. I nearly fell off my chair when the speaker shared on, ‘The goodness of God’. I came away with a renewed hope and love for a God, who truly is good.  On one of Karyn’s good days I asked her if she had been talking to God. She said “yes”. So I asked her if He had been talking to her and she said “yes”. I was so excited to hear this and I asked her what He had been saying and she said, “He loves me and everything is going to be ok”. Wow, it was just the encouragement we needed to hear. Even though in the natural it didn’t look like much was going on in her body, the Lord was with her, pouring His love over her, reassuring her heart that He was near. After five months in hospital, Karyn eventually stabilised to a level where she could be released to a rehabilitation facility. We were very aware that her level of function would not be anything like it Indulge | August/September 2013 | 17

was before. We wanted her home and this was one step closer. Karyn showed such determination and gutsiness while in rehab. Sadly, in July 2012, she contracted pneuomonia and went back into a sleep like state; the rehab team were not able to progress any further. It was a time of waiting, trusting and praying God’s best for her.  I had a picture one night of Dad in heaven, reaching out his hand to take Karyn’s and together they walked. I knew it was from the Lord in preparation for what was to come. On Father’s Day 2012, nine months after being admitted to hospital, Karyn went to be with the Lord.  There have been many life changing lessons learnt through this journey. The foundational principle being that salvation is the greatest miracle of all. I am so grateful for the privilege of knowing the Lord personally. I cannot imagine doing life, through the good times or the bad times, without Him. I celebrate my own salvation. I also rejoice that I will 18 |

see my dad and sister again. I don’t know why they were not physically healed this side of eternity but to know that they are now fully restored  and that we will see them again brings enormous comfort to my heart.  God, in ways that only He could do, also used these challenges to draw some of our extended family into relationship with Him. Loved ones started reading the bible and going to church.  He truly does turn all things for good. I have never been an overly optimistic person. Through these challenges God has taught me, and is still teaching me, to appreciate life and to seek out the good in each day by maintaining a grateful spirit. When faced with enormous amounts of negative news we had to choose what our focus would be. For example, when Karyn was in intensive care on life support, would we allow ourselves to be overwhelmed by the prognosis of the specialists or would we thank God that she was simply still alive?

“Through these challenges God has taught me... to appreciate life and to seek out the good in each day by maintaining a grateful spirit.�

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We choose to be thankful that she was still with us and while there was life there was hope. When she had her eyes opened, made slight hand movements or when she said a few words, we celebrated and thanked God. We did not ignore the reality of the situation but focusing on the positives helped maintain a buoyant spirit. Life can be messy and is not perfect but there is always, always, always something to be thankful for. Finally, I now have such a deeper love for the body of Christ. I have always been a very private person who is happy to help others but reluctant to receive help. I’ve learnt though we are not meant to do life by ourselves. God knew what He was doing when He called us into fellowship with one another, bearing each others’ burdens. It has been a process to learn how to receive from others, how to be vulnerable and how to take off the mask of pretending I had it all together. When I allowed others into my world, I was overwhelmed by

their love, support and generosity, never feeling alone through it all. While in the natural we were exhausted, prayers and practical support energised and carried us along. Even though I no longer have any siblings or a father here on earth, I have many spiritual dads and sisters in my beautiful church family. So now we are in a new season and for the first time in 12 years our family is not overshadowed by chronic sickness. I am so very proud of my mum for her strength, courage and faith during the storms we’ve faced. Together we are learning how to do life again and to dream new dreams. We are not waiting for the next tragedy. We know that God is good and that He has good days ahead for all of us, especially for Karyn’s son. We take great comfort in knowing our loved ones are in heaven, smiling and cheering us on to run our race well. *

“We are learning how to do life again and to dream new dreams.”

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“There have been many life changing lessons learnt through this journey. The foundational principle being that salvation is the greatest miracle of all.�

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w: b: m:

24 | 0431 882 123

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A Church full of

Mums Aunties & Sisters 26 |

Words: Emma Corney Images: Natasha Smith NSP Studio Photography Hair & Makeup: Tanya Epis


itus (2:3-4) talks about community; about the older women being an example for the younger women. I have learnt from firsthand experience how very valuable it is to be part of a community of support, encouragement and example. This is my story; of how the love and support of a church full of honorary mums, aunties and sisters helped me grow and develop, even after a childhood loss. When I was 12, my Mum started to feel unwell and very tired. As the mother of three children, ranging in age from five to 12, we thought it wasn’t completely surprising that she was tired. Mum was generally a robust, healthy person. Apart from pregnancy, she’d never been sick a day in her life. I don’t even remember her having a head cold!

“These women have taught me by word and example how to be a Godly woman.”

But soon it became obvious that it was more than just tiredness from a busy life. She started a range of medical tests, and it was decided that she would need an operation. That was all right, the operation should fix things and she’d be back to normal. Or so we thought. Mum had her surgery and was recovering. But the next week, the pathology results came back. She had cancer. A very rare form of cancer. Our world was about to change forever. Over the next few months, Mum started on chemotherapy. There was little chance it would do any good on the type of cancer she had, but being so young, and with a young family, they tried everything. Even during this period, my Mum and Dad kept our world as normal as possible. Looking back with the clarity of an adult, my respect and admiration for the way my parents handled this season grows more and more. I honestly don’t know how they managed.  They were always honest with us. As time moved on and it became obvious that this cancer was terminal, they chose to tell us the truth, which I will always be grateful for. Indulge | August/September 2013 | 27

During this eight month period, our family was so wonderfully supported by our church family, both locally and further afield. From memory, there were people praying for us all over the world. People were also wonderful with practical help, from driving us to school to help with meals. Truly a community at its best. Sadly, just over eight months after the original diagnosis, at the age of 39, my beautiful Mum made her final journey to heaven. Over the following months and years however, I have been truly blessed to have a Dad who has always been loving and supportive, and a church full of mums, aunties and sisters. These women have taught me by word and example how to be a Godly woman. If I had to lose my Mum, I’ve always said I was in the best place to not only survive, but hopefully develop into a mature, Godly woman. I was only 13 when my Mum passed away. Nearly 20 years later, I am convinced that there is no good age to lose a Mum.  I’m sure being a teenager is a difficult enough time without a major loss. I was tired and struggled to fit in socially. Everything seemed difficult, more than it should be. I don’t remember a lot of specifics from this period of my life, it’s all a bit of a blur. I just remember struggling to make it through every day. I am so grateful for the people who stuck by me during this period of my life. I was very intense, very stressed and anxious. I know it must have been hard for all of them to know how to best support me and I am very grateful for the ones who still had my best interests in mind, who gave me loving guidance when I needed it, and most of all, made sure I knew I was loved.

Emma 28 |

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supported and encouraged me. I know that I would not be able to live life and make a contribution to the world around me without them. My life is a wonderful example of what the church family can be at its best.  There are things that I have learnt through my own experience of loss, as well as walking the journey with friends who have also been down this path. I’d like to share some of them with you. Even now, I find it so difficult to really express how much I care and would like to help someone in a distressing or difficult situation. Everyone’s experience seems so different.  It is so incredibly difficult to know what to say to someone who has suffered a major loss. I have learnt to avoid saying that I know how they feel, because I probably don’t. Instead, I have found it best to simply say that I’m there if they need me, and do what I can to help them practically, as they need.  I have had to learn to let people find their own way in these situations, which I find very hard because I want so badly to help them. But what I think they need and what they think they need are sometimes very different, so I have learnt to be lead by the person I am trying to support. In my early 20s, I discovered that I had a medical condition that affects my endocrine system. One of the side effects of some of my endocrine levels being out of balance was, amazingly enough, feeling stressed and anxious. I learnt that my blood calcium levels being too high (or low) causes anxiety.  Once I had surgery to remove the glands that had developed tumours, which was causing this high calcium level, all my anxiety and stress disappeared. I still remember several years ago, one of my colleagues saying how she thought I was the calm one in the office! I was very excited by that compliment and to this day, being told I am calm is one of the greatest compliments I can receive. Again, through this last nine years of battling this illness, the wonderful people around me have 30 |

Another thing I have learnt is that there is no set timeframe for someone to “get over” a loss. Nothing that happens in life is in isolation, and there will be other factors, often unknown to other people, that will influence how someone works through grief. It just adds more pressure to have someone asking if you’re “over it” yet. These are just a few personal reflections, based on my experience and observations. As I reflect on the past 20 years of my life, I also look forward to the future. I know that it is going to be full of good times and bad, because that’s what life is. But I know that I have a great chance to make good, however God leads, because of the love and support of a church full of mums, aunties and sisters. *

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Ya Gotta Have


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answer our prayers. I have walked and journaled and thought long and hard about what I was doing wrong and why God had not answered us and given us what we so long for. Well meaning (and beautiful) people in our lives remind us that we need to have faith and let us know that they have faith that it will all work out. But then what do they have faith in? What have I been having faith in? A baby. A situation to happen the way that I believe it should? For things to happen when and how I want them to? Words: Shannon Crozier Image:


here is a scripture in the bible that I love. It is in the book of Hebrews. You can find it in Chapter 11, verse 1. It says this: “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see” (New International Version). I love that we can have faith and that it gives us assurance and hope for the things that we cannot see. Faith has not always been a positive word for me. Sometimes I have felt that faith (or my lack of it) was holding back so many blessings in my life. I am not sure about you but for me I have always thought faith to be something that we need to (MUST) have for something to happen. I have always thought that we must have faith so that the very thing we are praying and believing for will happen. I have always thought that if a prayer is not answered then maybe it was because I did not have enough faith. I can assure you that this is not true. Our God is not a God of expectations that must be met before He will hear and answer our prayers. He loves us too much to put criteria on blessing us and giving us the desires of our hearts. Our story (my husband and I) is not that unusual to many others. We have wanted a baby for many years and yet this is a dream that is yet to be fulfilled. I have spent (and I am now a little embarrassed to say) years (yes, years) desperately hoping, praying and telling God “Yes I have faith” just so that we could have a baby. I have spent nights crying and almost begging God for Him to

In September 2011, I thought our ‘faith’ had worked. We fell pregnant. It had been a long (almost) three years of hoping and praying. We were at the point where we felt that we would almost give up. And then it happened. Then. What felt like a few short moments (days) later, our tiny baby went to Heaven. In September 2012 and March 2013 the same thing happened. Our faith was tested. I honestly felt that I had just not gathered enough of it in my heart to save our babies. I realised then that my faith should be in God. I had faith in a situation that left me devastated over and over again because my eyes were not on Jesus. My faith should be in Him - in my creator; in the answer to everything; in my God who made me and purposed me to be alive; to be living; to be making a difference in the world.

I have spent years desperately hoping, praying and telling God “Yes I have faith.” Indulge | August/September 2013 | 33

Faith - not in a situation but in a God that can do all things. And He will. I just know that there are people everywhere who have a dream in their heart to see something of significance happen for them and for those they love. You have a dream. You have desires. Some of them are deep within and you think no one knows. God knows. He put them there. Don’t get me wrong. Pain and heartbreak are real. There are some days where you just want to hide under your blankets and let the world go by without you. There are days where you don’t feel like putting on a brave face, smiling and telling the world “I am great”. There are days where chocolate (and lots of it) is the only answer. There are days where tears just flow and you cannot stop them. And that is completely ok.

You have a dream. You have desires... God knows. He put them there.

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Sometimes it feels like nothing will change – like a massive brick wall that will not budge. I urge you to take your eyes off the wall (don’t even give that ugly wall the time of day) and face our wonderful Jesus instead. There is nothing, sweet girl, that you have to do. God knows and He will bring you through. He feels what you feel. Have Faith (that means to just know) that God is with you, holding you in His lap and wrapping His strong arms around you. Take your dream and give it to God. Take your faith and place it in God. He is faithful, He is our hope, He is our peace and He knows us better than we will ever know ourselves. How amazing that we can trust Him with our lives. * Shannon lives in Mackay, North Queensland, with her husband Rog and her cute puppy Hamish. She is an early intervention and behaviour teacher and loves her job as passionately as she loves to write. Rog and Shannon attend New Life Church and are currently studying a Graduate Certificate in Theology together. Shannon loves drinking tea, spending time with those she loves and playing touch football to keep fit.  She believes that miracles can be seen in every day life (even during those times that bring the most pain). To read more of Shannon’s stories you can visit her blog: Girl Average. 

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Destined to Prosper

Words: Candice Schmidt Image: Natasha Smith NSP Studio Photography

“Beloved, I pray that you will prosper and be in good health, even as your soul prospers.” 3 John 1:2


he good news is that we can be healed and our soul can prosper. Our past does not define our future because Jesus paid the price for us to be free. I love that Jesus came to fulfil the words of Isaiah 61:1-2. He came to bind up and heal the broken hearted, He came to set us free, open our eyes, to comfort all who mourn, to bring beauty for our ashes, joy instead of mourning and praise instead of a heavy, burdened and failing spirit. What a trade! He takes our mess and transforms us into a message of healing and hope.

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Not only does Jesus come to heal but He wants to restore and make us whole. In Isaiah 61:3 God says that He will rebuild the ruins, restoring the desolations of many generations. The metaphor for our lives is that of ruined, broken, plundered cities that have been desolate for generations and which God comes to restore and rebuild. This scripture is so exciting as we walk to take hold of our freedom and receive all God has for us. The victories we encounter bring a freedom that is not just for us – but for our family tree, our children and our children’s children. God restores what was lost and gives us back our inheritance that will bless many generations to come. I have a favourite Greek word in the bible. It is the word “Sozo”. This word appears 110 times in the New Testament. This word is used in different contexts that mean “Saved”, “Healed” and “Delivered”. It means to be made whole. In Luke 10 Jesus healed ten lepers and

they left to go on their way, but one turned around and came back to Jesus to thank him. Jesus said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well”. While the other nine got physically healed, it was this one who returned to Jesus that “was made well” – he was Saved, Healed and Delivered. He received a full “Sozo” and was made completely whole – Spirit, Soul and Body. Hebrews 12:1-2 says “…let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith”. We receive Jesus by faith and need to “throw off everything that hinders” to receive our full inheritance and run the race marked out for us. It is, however, hard to run when we are weighed down by a backpack full of unnecessary weight accumulated on our journey of life. In my journey as a Counsellor and ministering to people in areas of deliverance, I have identified some Hindrances to Freedom: Emotional turmoil – Turmoil comes from a build up of emotions from the past that we have not processed and let go. If we are often tense, irritable, can’t cope, explode or withdraw, feel hurt or offended often, have racing thoughts and emotions, then it is a sign that there is unfinished business. God’s desire is for us to not have a spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind (2 Timothy 1:7). Wounds – Enter through unmet needs when growing up; neglect, various types of abuse, trauma, losses and grief. As children we are excellent observers but often, poor interpreters. We make meaning from events in our life that may be real or incorrect; either way the hurts can cut deep in our heart. Divorce in a family can result in a child feeling they were not “enough” to keep the family together. Rejection or bullying can result in feelings of being defective in some way. These thoughts we have are not how God sees us but can be etched unconsciously into our brain neural pathways that become a lens through which we look at life. Our negative self-concept is then reinforced because we don’t notice the good but are tuned to the negative, reinforcing lies we believe about ourselves. Lies – At any one time there are three voices we can listen to – God’s voice, our voice or the demonic whispers. Ephesians 6:1 explains that our real battle is not against people but against demonic spirits in the atmosphere. A negative voice in our head that is questioning and talking

to us throughout the day is often from the enemy. “You’re so stupid … such a loser, why even try … you will fail anyway… the situation really is hopeless…”. It may sound like our voice or our parent’s voice but if it accuses and reminds us of our failures and imperfections and we feel bad, it is likely lies from our spiritual enemy. Strongholds – We filter life through a mental grid that looks to support what we believe to be true. If we begin to repeat these lies in our head and believe them, they can set up a stronghold in our life. If we don’t think people like us we may be unfriendly and push people away. These people respond to our unfriendliness, leaving us alone, which reinforces the belief that people don’t like us. Strongholds are incorrect thinking patterns and need to be replaced with the truth of God’s word and what He says and thinks about us. Unconfessed Sin – We need to confess sin (1 John 1:9), receive God’s forgiveness and then stop sinning. If we struggle to stop then ask God what is at the root. Addictions such as food, pornography, overspending and alcohol numb the pain and will meet a certain need such as comfort but will leave us feeling guilty and ashamed. Ask God what opened the door to sin and the need it is meeting. Then repent and turn towards God to receive His mercy and grace. Allow God to meet our needs, heal our hearts and give us strength to live life according to His will and purposes. Unforgiveness – Forgiveness is a key to freedom. The effects of bitterness on the body are toxic and can lead to sickness, disease and mental health problems. If somebody has wronged us, and we still think about their wrong whenever we think of them, then it’s time to give those feelings to God. Unforgiveness can come between us and God and can give the enemy a legal ground to bring torment (Matthew 18:23-35). Know that God truly cares for us and will bring justice as we trust Him. Walls/defenses – When we are concerned our needs won’t be met or have fear and anxiety through past experiences, we can build up walls to protect our heart – they keep out bad influences but also hinder us receiving all the good things God has for us. Our earthly experience with our family and friends affects how we see God and can hinder our ability to connect. Pride, hopelessness, independence, anger, rejection, etc can all be walls that keep people from hurting us but also keep us from enjoying healthy relationships. Encountering a God who loves us will dissipate our fears. 1 John 4:18 says there is no fear in love but perfect love drives out fear. Indulge | August/September 2013 | 37

Be free to prosper - keys for healthy living... Spirit [Receive

God’s unconditional love and acceptance. Spend time with God; in worship, prayer, reading the bible, enjoying His presence and receiving His mercy and grace. [Receive the gift of the Holy Spirit who leads us into truth, is our comforter, counsellor and guide and will help us to live a well-balanced, purposeful life. [Know our identity as a child of the Most High God and bring our mind into agreement with His word and by faith receive His promises. We are royalty, adopted at a price, loved and delighted in, and purposed for destiny.

Soul [We

were created for relationship; to be in community. The bible says God puts the lonely in families. We need friends and family to talk to and have fun with. Live a life giving and receiving love in healthy friendships. [Soul space – do things that you love to do; walk on the beach, enjoy a bubble bath, a massage, sing, dance, paint, whatever refreshes and energises your soul. [Practice random acts of kindness. We were created to give as well as receive. [Notice the blessings in life – start a thankfulness journal. [Learn good boundaries and when to say “no” to protect our heart and use our time well. [Develop good communication skills to get our needs met in a healthy way. [Cast

your cares/burdens on Jesus - 1 Peter 5:7. Be real, be honest and dialogue with God about your struggles. The gospel is imperfect people connecting with a holy God who gives us “all things pertaining to life and godliness” (2 Peter 1:3).

Body [We

need to look after ourselves; exercise, healthy eating, enough sleep and water. A healthy body leads to a healthy mind and more energy. [Laugh – it has numerous health benefits. [Cry - tears are a way for stress and emotion to leave the body. [Develop healthy coping strategies – deal with those addictions. [Take responsibility – we have choices and with God all things are possible. [Write down dreams and consider - what we do,

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say, read, watch, who we will hang out with, what we allow in or out. Consider the fruit - is it leading us toward God and His Purposes? God desires for us to prosper. Take a regular health check especially of your thoughts, feelings and behaviour as they are interconnected. Let God come and gently tend to any wounds, clean out the infection and bring healing and restoration so only a scar remains. When we are healed and made whole in body, soul and spirit then we are unhindered and free to run the race God has for us and win in this life and Eternity. Our freedom carries the power to release freedom and destiny in those around us and for generations to come. [ If you noticed some of these areas need attending, I would encourage you to ask the Holy Spirit to help you find a good friend, pastor, Counsellor, Christian Psychologist, Pastoral Care worker, Chaplain etc. For Sozo ministry see

Candice desires to see people thrive in every area of life. She has been married for 18 years to a Paediatrician and they have lived in South Africa, New Zealand and Canada but have called the Gold Coast, Australia home for the past five years. They have four children between the ages of six and 14. Her passion is to “Live well, laugh often, love much”. She has a Degree in Psychology and a Diploma in Counselling. She loves to help people live to their full God-given potential spirit, soul and body. She enjoys counselling and watching God bring healing and restoration. She is a trained facilitator of 'Toolbox Parenting' which offers families hot tips on parenting well.

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The Marriage o Code

Bill and Pam Farrel talk marriage

Words: Charissa Steffens Images: Courtesy of Bill & Pam Farrel


ill and Pam Farrel are gifted communicators who skilfully combine biblical truth with practical tools to help couples navigate life together. Authors of best selling books “Men are like Waffles, Women are like Spagetti” and “The Marriage Code”, Bill and Pam are in high demand as international speakers. On a recent visit to Australia, we chatted about their marriage journey and some of the key factors that can strengthen marriages today. Can you share your stories with us? How did you start your marriage ministry? Pam: I think desperation might be the best word to describe why we do relationship ministry and why we help encourage couples relationally. I come from a home with domestic violence. My dad was an alcoholic and I watched the marriage of my parents fall apart when I was a college student. It was really heartbreaking to see a woman in that much pain and a man making such poor choices. Indulge | August/September 2013 | 43

felt like I could recognize what healthy was. I went to a leadership conference and at that leadership conference the speaker sent us on a quiet time to see if we were called into ministry. So I came back knowing full well that God had called me to help other people around the world. I walked into the lobby and sat down on a sofa and in walked a very handsome man and his name was Bill. Bill: I really honestly believe everybody was made with a purpose and you can find that purpose if you are listening. And there are three things you have to listen to. You have to listen to your experience, because I believe God orchestrates the experiences of our life. You have to listen to your pain, because often God takes the pain of our life and uses it to make us compassionate towards other people and the third is the desires that He places in our hearts. We are all really attached to different things in life. Bill: I look back on my life and I grew up in a home run by a mom who was very afraid and very controlling. My mum had been through some significant abuse in her teen years and her reaction to it was to try and control her life and avoid the fear. So she isolated our family. I was the youngest in my family so I watched my brother and sister fight against her and concluded that didn’t work so I was just numb emotionally.

I remember praying as a little girl of eight, “Lord when I grow up I don’t want to live in a house that’s like this”. I want to have a house that is full of love, joy and goodness. I didn’t want to repeat that pattern. So I began to look for role models of people that had healthy marriages. I also began to notice that I was dragging around some baggage because I was raised in a home that was disintegrating. So God challenged me, kind of radically as a college student, “Pam you are addicted to men and you kind of have this loser magnet. I’m going to put you on a dating sabbatical. Pam for one year, I don’t want you to date.” And that was kind of a big deal in the States. I had won Homecoming Queen and I was a cheerleader, so I was addicted to guys. Pam: So God said “Just don’t date for a year and fall in love with me instead”. I just dug into God’s word and studied who Jesus was. I found out what love looked like when He had relationship. By the end of that year I 44 |

Then in my sophomore year of high school I went to see the movie the Exorcist and it shook me up. I heard it was based on something true. I didn’t know how to respond to this because I didn’t see a difference between the girl (in the movie) and me. So if anything like that could happen, I didn’t know how to prevent it in my life. I didn’t know anybody to talk to but we had a bible in our house so I started reading it. I would actually sleep with the bible because I’d seen vampire movies, you know where you hold up a cross and keep the vampires away. I thought if I hold the bible I’m going to be safe. After doing that for a month I read 1 John 4:4, “Greater is He that is in you than He that is in the world”. And for whatever reason, the light went on and I realised if I can get Jesus in my life I’m going to be ok. My brother taught me to pray and I asked Jesus to come into my life that day. I slept all night for the first time since seeing that movie. I woke up the next morning and I knew something had happened. My brother and I snuck out of the house the next Sunday and went to church and that lasted for three weeks, then my mom found out about it and banned us from going to church because she didn’t want us around groups of people that could influence us.

Pam: Most parents pray their kids into church. She was freaked out that they were there. Bill: It was so real for me what had happened. I got there with my brother and said, “We’ve got to do something. What do we do?” We’d heard that you are supposed to study the bible so we started a bible study. We had no idea what we were doing but we started a bible study. We got together with some students and it grew from five the first study to 60 high school students. We just shared what God was teaching us and we prayed for each other. That is all we knew how to do. Now while I’m attending this bible study this young lady in the group says, “you know men tend to marry women like their moms”. And it frightened me to death. So when I met Pam that’s kind of the attitude I had. I wasn’t at all that interested in relationships. I was really afraid that if I did get interested in somebody, it was going to turn out to be somebody like my mom, who was led by fear, and who was very controlling. So I was just keeping my distance. I was ok being friends with girls. So when I walked into this lobby where Pam was I just looked at her as another person involved in this Christian movement we were in. Pam: I remember thinking, he is so incredibly gorgeous, he’s Godly, wow, ok I’m interested. So we started at that conference to hang out. At the next conference we started talking more, the kind of talking like when you are holding an ice-cream and it totally melts because you forget to eat it.

Bill: I’m still thinking, yeah she’s cute, she’s a good friend and I’m glad she loves Jesus because that makes her a trustworthy friend and that’s as far as I’m thinking in my mind. Bill: After I prayed to receive Christ I had not had a girlfriend. So I’m like I don’t know how to do this. So I’m 19 years old I have no idea and I just don’t want to mess it up. So I’m like I can’t concentrate, so I ask Pam to get together that night and when we got together I said “Pam I think I really like you and I’d like to spend some time getting to know you. Are you ok with that?” Pam: At the beginning of the Summer we decided we would take time out and see if we should be together. So we set a certain day, at a certain time and we decided that we would show up at the same place and have dinner and see what God had told us. Are we called to be married? So we both showed up at that restaurant. Bill: We were married before our 21st birthdays. I look back at my family and I appreciate my parents’ loyalty because they are very loyal to each other but beyond that I can’t think of anything in my parents’ marriage that I want to repeat. So, how do we do this? We would go to church together and I would have us stand at the back and we would just scan the crowd and look for couples and we would sit right behind them so that in the greeting time we’d have to meet. Pam: We could tell that they like each other. They’ve got their arms around each other. They’re holding hands.

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Bill: After we greeted I’d look at the guy and I would say “You look like you are in love, how did you do it?” Which usually would take him by surprise and we would end up having lunch after church. I would just grill them with questions because I wanted to know what do you do every day that keeps you connected to each other. What have you done that you would never repeat? I was just relentless because I needed to know how to do it different. Now little did I know back then that that was the beginning of our training for running a marriage ministry. I just knew it was in my heart to ask those questions.

seemed to appreciate having both voices. Shortly after that, not even a year, I thought I don’t know enough to be a pastor so we called a mentor from seminary.

Bill: That’s why I said follow your desire; I believe God put that desire in our hearts early because He was training us for that, so that we could help a lot of other couples.

Bill: I had no drive to be an author. I just wanted to be a pastor and help people figure life out. And when he asked me I knew it was another of those moments where God had just called. So I said yes.

Pam: We went into youth ministry, practically the day we got back from our honeymoon. Our church didn’t really have a youth ministry so they started asking us to talk to the youth. We would lead this Wednesday night bible study of six kids and it soon grew to 60 kids in just a few weeks. We thought, “There is something here”. So we, Bill and I, started teaching relationship seminars to teenagers when we were newlyweds. Before we were 22 we were teaching on relationships together. Bill: And what we realised when teaching them was that most people didn’t know the basics. Just the simple things about how you communicate between a man and a woman. How to grow personally, how to show honour and respect and how to become a trustworthy person. I just realised they had no idea; they are just hoping it turns out well. Bill: I had too many young men telling me, “You know I’ve been spending time with this young lady and she just won’t straighten up”. The average guy has no clue and he’s confused. But he’s attracted so he hangs in there. I just thought, “I’ve got to help these guys be smarter about how to have a relationship with a lady because they are wanting someone in their life that acts like a man but looks like a woman and that person doesn’t exist”. Pam: And vice versa Pam: Our heart began to be drawn into relationship ministry. We went from youth ministry into senior pastorate at 28 and we started teaching on marriage and family. That was our first teaching series we did and we taught together, which was kind of unique to have both men and woman up there at the same time. The audience 46 |

Bill: I started to meet with Jim (Conway) to figure out how do you pastor a church and raise a family in that context. I would go see him once a month and we would sort through all these questions and after 18 months he approached me one day and said that his wife and he wanted to co-author a book with us. Now up until that moment if you had told me I was going to be an author I would have laughed at you.

Pam: The book was titled Pure Pleasure - making your marriage a great affair. The topic of our first book was what did the sexual revelation do, what was the damage caused and how can you heal from that damage. Most people don’t write about sex in their first book out of the gates. So we have always been the example of the unusual, but crazy enough to take on the subject of sexuality. Bill: We’ve always had the approach we had to be both male and female friendly in our approach. We went into this thinking we have to be really practical and we have to be encouraging and confrontative with both males and females. Bill: Our bestselling book is, Men are like waffles, Women are like spaghetti. We choose that title because, one it’s a food illustration, so most people love food, and second, it forces you to be light hearted about it. Bill: Women need to know that us men really do break things down into individual subjects in life and hence the boxes on a waffle. When we get too many subjects going we get lost and once we’re lost we shut down. It’s a hard concept for women because women have an incredible ability to just keep going. But for the average guy it’s confusing. Pam: I think the goal is just to appreciate the opposite gender, because whether you are single or whether you are married, you have to interface with the opposite gender and so if you can value the uniqueness of the genders in society, life is just happier, understand that somebody is just acting the way they have been created.

Pam: I think a husband and a wife both bring uniqueness to the table that benefits society, family, and the church and when we see and value them all of society is helped. What are some key recommendations you would give to couples that may be struggling in their marriage? Pam: My favourite tid bit, because we live in a really stressful world, and it doesn’t seem to matter whether it’s the United States or Australia, we all have a lot of responsibility and how men and women process stress is very different. How women process stress is we talk our way through stress. Like when I’m stressed out my mum knows it, my sister knows it, my prayer partner knows it, my best friends know it, and the clerk you know at Coles knows it. We talk our way through stress.

BOOK GIVEAWAY We have a signed copy of Bill & Pam Farrel’s book

The Marriage Code

to giveaway. To enter, simply email by 5pm (AEST) Friday 6 September 2013.

But guys, when they process stress they like to go to their favourite easy box to rest and recharge. It’s kind of like sitting in a battery recharger and if you look at a battery sitting in a battery recharger what does it look like it’s doing? Nothing. But it is doing something, it’s recharging. It is a really simple thing of asking how we are going to manage stress and most couples don’t stop to ask it, they let the stress define them. Bill: They blame each other for it. Pam: It’s supposed to be your fault, must be his fault, her fault, must be the kids’ fault. But sometimes it’s just life. It’s not you, it’s not me, it’s just life. So how are we going to handle life? Bill: Two things we tell people is first learn how to forgive and you know in almost all of our books we have a very simple process of how to go through the six steps of forgiveness. Then we tell couples that they really are one breakthrough away from having a great marriage. It feels to them like it’s a long long way away, but when a couple is in conflict there is lots of energy in a relationship and when that energy turns compassionate it ignites the relationship. Pam: And sometimes for a breakthrough to happen you just need to say, you know what, I don’t think we have enough tools in our toolbox. Do we need to go and get a book on marriage? Do we need to talk with a Pastor, a counsellor? Do we need to go to a seminar? Maybe we just need some more tools in the toolbox. And often times just one simple tool like a wrench or a screw driver would fix the problem at your house. Sometimes one simple tool can fix your relationship. *

For more information on the Farrel’s go to their website

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ur ability to think is incredibly powerful and part of God’s amazing master design. I had the privilege of listening to Dr Caroline Leaf – cognitive neuroscientist and communication pathologist - in Brisbane last year, and this year at Colour Conference in Sydney. Since 1981, Dr Leaf has researched the human brain, with a particular emphasis on unlocking its vast untapped potential; and has concluded (in a nut shell) that “everyone can find freedom in their thought life”, and that science is catching up with and proving what the Bible has taught all along.   Dr Leaf says in her book, Who Switched off My Brain?,  “We can achieve our full potential in Christ by cleansing our thought life of toxic thoughts and emotion”.  Toxic thoughts are thoughts that trigger negative and anxious emotions (such as anger, rage and unforgiveness), which produce biochemicals that cause the body stress.  They are stored in our mind, as well as in the cells of our body. Every time we have a thought, it is actively changing our brain and body. We think all day long, and it has been calculated that on average we have 20,000 (and up to 70,000) thoughts per day. For this reason, every thought we have should be weighed carefully, just as the bible tells us in Proverbs 23:7a that “as we think, so we are”.

Words: Kate Bishop Image: Natasha Smith NSP Studio Photography

How Healthy Is Your Thought Life?

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James Allen, British philosopher and author of “As a Man Thinketh”, wrote: “A man is literally what he thinks – his character being the complete sum of all his thoughts. All that a man achieves and all that he fails to achieve is the direct result of his own thoughts. In a justly ordered universe, where loss of equipoise would mean total destruction, individual responsibility must be absolute. A man’s weakness and strength, purity and impurity, are his own, and not another man’s. They are brought about by himself, and not by another; and they can only be altered by himself, never by another. His condition is also his own, and not another man’s. His suffering and his happiness are evolved from within. As he thinks, so he is; as he continues to think, so he remains.”

Every word or action was first a thought; our behaviour literally starts with a thought. Thoughts stimulate emotions, which then result in attitude and finally produce behaviour.

“Our mind is so powerful that: You can think yourself clever. You can think yourself calm. You can think yourself healthy. You can think yourself out of worry and anxiety. You can think yourself out of bitterness and resentment. You can think yourself into forgiving. You can think yourself in control of your emotions. You can think yourself out of stress.“ Dr leaf explains what happens when our thoughts are negative or toxic. Toxic thoughts produce toxic emotions, which produce toxic attitudes, resulting in toxic behaviour.   The great news is that toxic thoughts are controllable, and that toxic thinking can be eliminated – great news for us! According to Dr Leaf there are only two types of emotions – each with their own anatomy and physiology – love and fear. All other emotions are variations are these. Out of love branches emotions of joy, trust, caring, peace, contentment, patience, kindness and gentleness. Fear based emotions include bitterness, anger, hatred, rage, anxiety, guilt, shame, inadequacy, depression and confusion. In 1 John 4:18 we read that, “There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear.  For fear has to do with punishment and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.”

I love that in God’s master plan we have been wired and designed for love. Our negative thinking is a learned behaviour. We must, however, deal with our toxic thoughts. If we repress and hide toxic emotions, a time will come when those buried emotions will come pouring out.  Dealing with toxic emotions (emotions based on fear) will greatly improve our thought life, and our physical and spiritual well being. During the recent school holidays we had friends stay with us. Of course that meant I had to clean up our day to day mess (as you do). I felt pressure to clean the house and make it look as perfect as possible. I placed a whole lot of clutter (including paperwork, books, shoes, balls) in the upstairs linen closet – with the view to deal with it later.  Out of sight, out of mind. When our friends had left, I opened doors to pack away clean linen and everything fell out (in much the same way as it was stuffed in the cupboard).  It reminded me that this is how we often deal with our negative thoughts and toxic emotions, we repress and hide, and then at a later stage when they can no longer be restrained they come pouring out! Our brain is incredible, and according to Dr Leaf it can be re-shaped and re-formed. Thoughts can be measured, they occupy space (mental real estate), they change and grow and shrink and adapt, but most importantly, they represent you. Paul in Ephesians 4:31-32 NIV writes: “Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as Christ God forgave you.”

The science of positive thinking

The Brain is made up of nerve cells called neurons. Each neuron (or thought) is made up of, among other things, an axon and dendrites. Indulge | August/September 2013 | 49

The dendrites (tree-like branches) are where memories are stored. They grow extensively on the nerve cell as we think. Dendrites can shrink and fall off with continued high levels of stress due to toxic thinking.

spirit and health of our body. Dr Leaf ’s research shows that around 87 per cent of illnesses can be attributed to our thought life – and approximately 13 per cent to diet, genetics and environment.

New research reveals that unforgiving, resentful, pessimistic or negative thoughts cause the “memory trees” in a brain’s dendrites to become sparse and thorny. However, the more our thoughts are loving, forgiving, grateful and positive,  the more these dendrites branches grow and flourish on the nerve cell, and the happier, healthier and more intelligent one becomes. 

Negative thoughts and reinforcement releases negative chemicals, and positive thoughts and reinforcement release positive chemicals. Thoughts can de-stress you, making you more clever, calm and in control of your emotions – or they can do the opposite.  The choice is ours.  God has given us a design of hope – we can lead a healthy lifestyle simply by learning to control our thought life. Dr Leaf says that “even though we can’t control our circumstances, we have the power to choose reactions.”

The brain builds a double memory every thought – one on the left side of the brain and one on the right side. The left side of the brain processes information from detail to big picture, while the right side Paul writes: “…Fix your processes information from big picture to detail.             In     Philippians                      4:8      (NLT)    Both sides of the brain take part in every activity, but thoughts on what is true, and honourable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about from different perspectives. The more focused and aware we are of our thinking – the more that this synergy will occur between both sides of the brain, and the stronger the memory will build – then the branches of the ‘trees’ will flourish – like the healthy tree.

Thinking our way to better health We have been designed with three parts that interrelate: body, soul and spirit. Spirit – the true you, our innate conscience, communion with the Holy Spirit. Soul – intellect, will, mind, emotion. Body – the physical part of you.

Paul understood the relationship between spirit, soul and body: 1 Thessalonians 5:23 NIV “May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you (to set you apart, to make you holy and pure) through and through.  May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless (without guilt) at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” If our soul (or thought life) is chaotic, then our spirit and body will be adversely affected – through our mind we are influencing the development of our 50 |

“It is possible to change our thought life and wire out toxic thoughts“ things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” When you think, you will make a choice; when you choose, you cause genetic expression which can alter DNA – this is known as the science of epigenetics. We are designed by God to change our minds – (of course, as women we tend to change our minds more than men do!!). Put simply, if we have wired in a thought, we can wire it out again. The brain, through a process call “neuroplasticity” can change and make new connections, re-wire itself and even grow new brain cells - simply as a result of our thought life and experiences.

Join us as we

It is possible to change our thought life and wire out toxic thoughts. Paul says in Romans 12:2 that we’re to renew our minds or in NLT translation: “…Let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” And in 2 Corinthians 10:5 (NIV)  “Take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”

Think Ourselves Healthy!

Every time I chose to stop (or take captive) the lies in my thoughts, I am rewiring my brain. For example, because I’m a perfectionist, I could believe the lie that nothing I do is good enough or that I need to work for my love and acceptance of Christ, but I choose not to.

The Indulge Team have decided to get mentally fit and detox our minds.

Every time I have a new understanding or revelation of God’s grace - I am rewiring my brain. Every time I chose to trust Him - I am rewiring my brain. Every time I chose to pray or worship, despite how I feel at the time, I am rewiring my brain.

You can join in too! Here is How:

I can, you can, redesign your brain.*


Go to Dr Caroline Leaf ’s 21 Day Detox website

Kate has been married to Peter for 22 years and they have three great kids.   She is passionate about laying the framework for women to live out their full potential in God. Originally from Tasmania, she has lived and worked in five states. She has a background in Banking & Finance and is currently Director of Women’s Ministry at Nexus Church in north Brisbane. She loves spending quality time with her family and friends and appreciates good coffee.


Sign up for Dr Caroline Leaf ’s . 21 Day detox program (see website for details and cost)


Join o Healthy ur Thinki Forum ng on t Indulge he eMa Faceboo gazine k Page (from 1 5 Sep tember 2


Indulge | August/September 2013 | 51

#indulgemagazine #healthythinking

“Bundaberg looked like a war zone, with a state of emergency declared� 52 |

After the Rain Rebuilding after the Bundaberg Floods

Words & Images: Kirsten Williams


he beginning of the year was shaping up to be a good one. The weather was magnificent, not too hot and not looking like being any different for months. Little did we know what was about to take place. Australia Day weekend 2013 turned out to be a memorable one in more ways than anyone would care to remember for our community. The weather turned bad, really bad‌ A tropical rain depression descended over Bundaberg and the Wide Bay region that dropped a remarkable amount of rain over the area. It all happened in a bit over a week. Ex-tropical cyclone Oswald made its way down the Queensland coast, leaving a trail of destruction and flooding in its wake. The destruction was incredible. Homes, businesses, and churches were inundated with water, debris, and an incredible amount of mud. In the course of the drama people were uprooted from their homes, some with few possession and keep sakes, others with nothing but the shirts on their backs as they were airlifted to safety.

Indulge | August/September 2013 | 53

Homes were literally washed away, removed from their foundations. Some were never seen again, others were found as the waters subsided kilometres from where they were built. Nowhere escaped the devastation. Bargara, a sleepy seaside town was all but destroyed by mini tornados and waterspouts that ripped apart the homes of countless people. Bundaberg looked like a war zone, with a state of emergency declared and the army called in to help with the clean up. North Bundaberg residents were hit the hardest, many losing their homes and their possessions. Streets were demolished as the floodwaters carved a new path of least resistance. Throughout the crisis many stories emerged of hope, of great triumph over tragedy, and of God working in the midst of our beautiful city experiencing a “once

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in a lifetime� disaster. During such a crisis our true nature is exposed. We are a tight-knit community and in the middle of everything that took place, people banded together. People who were not yet friends helped neighbours clean up, they helped businesses get back on their feet and friendships were forged for life. This is how the healing process began, with the generosity and kindness of people helping people. As the crisis played out across the nation’s media, our community was on the end of incredible generosity. Many people from all over Australia donated cash, much needed essential items, and their time to help. Our small town swelled with the ranks of people from all over the state coming to help in any way they could. They donned gumboots, brooms and rubber gloves to get in and provide muscle to clean up. Others provided a much need shoulder for people to cry on or an ear to listen as those who were affected recounted their tale of

what happened. Kids helped out, cooking cupcakes to deliver to those who were sweating it out in homes covered with inches of mud. One family who couldn’t do much in the way of lending a hand went and bought ice creams and walked the streets and handed them out and talked to people, lending moral support and a much need reprieve from the work that was taking place. Another family who lost everything, literally, was on the receiving end of a local church in action. With no insurance their home was gutted, cleaned out and put back together at no expense to them, complete with new kitchen and everyday items. Needless to say, the church is alive here in Bundaberg! It’s now been seven months since the floods. There have been tough times for sure but in the re-building process there is hope. Hope for new beginnings and new possibilities for the future. It hasn’t been an easy road to healing, either individually from such an event, or as a community. Often it’s been taking one step at a time or seeing each day as another day to get a job done. For many who lost everything it’s been a process. It’s taking time to rebuild, time to reestablish homes, families, and businesses. Time is a

“Throughout the crisis many stories emerged of hope, of great triumph over tradgedy, and of God working...”

great healer of many things, it is often time that helps us see a tragedy like this with a different perspective. Re-building homes can be done. It’s another thing to rebuild lives, but Bundaberg is recovering. People are healing. The city still shows the scars of what took place all those months ago but there are many signs of health. Families are beginning to move back into their homes that were damaged which is bringing a sense of joy and relief to people’s lives. There is certainly much more to be done, but the most important thing is that people are seeing good things come from this. New friendships have formed, families have stronger bonds and the community has banded together to overcome many difficulties and immense sadness. Businesses are beginning to see recovery and people’s lives have settled back into a new normal as they’ve adjusted to this disruption in their lives. Above all of this God truly subsides over all that has taken place. The church community across all denominations has given tirelessly and without reservation to help in the time of need. It has been a stark reminder that we are all part of one body and as we work together amazing things can be accomplished and people can experience the love of Christ above and beyond what we can do on our own. *

Kirsten is a mum, wife, businesswoman and pastor. She is currently studying Marketing at University while working, and running her own graphic design company Salty Fish. Kirsten and her family live in Bundaberg, Queensland. Kirsten has a heart for women, and is part of the pastoral team, alongside her husband, at Hertigae Christian Centre, Bundaberg. Indulge | August/September 2013 | 55

Book Reviews Grace –

More than we deserve, Greater than we imagine

by Gina Hamilton The Vow Kim & Krickett Carpenter

Max Lucado “If you ever catch yourself thinking, I can do whatever I want because God will forgive me, then grace is not happening to you. Selfishness, perhaps. Arrogance, for sure. But grace? No. Grace creates a resolve to do good, not permission to do bad.” In Max Lucado’s latest book on grace, he inspires a refreshing and insightful concept of what God’s grace truly is. He is a masterful storyteller and Bible teacher all wrapped up in one. The Biblical narratives he shares are written with wonderful imagery as though he was an onlooker at these events. This book has given his readers a creative perspective of how God has used certain characters and situations to unconditionally extend to us how His grace works, such as through the story of the woman caught in adultery that the community wanted to stone and of Barabbas being spared on the cross while Jesus took his place. Grace is a light-hearted and uplifting book that is truly indicative of the beauty and majesty of God’s grace for us. Grace is something we all want, but few of us genuinely understand what it’s really about. Lucado takes his readers on a journey to better understand God’s grace without holding back any part of himself. So that further study can be undertaken, a reader’s guide has been included at the back of the book which is designed to elicit a personalised response to the topics covered in each of the succinctly arranged chapters.

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An autobiography that shares the strength of the marriage covenant, The Vow, is a story narrated by Kim Carpenter, which is bound to have readers in awe of this couple’s faith and trust in God. At just 10 weeks into their marriage, Kim and Krickett are involved in a horrific car accident that leaves Krickett with a significant brain trauma, erasing her memory of the past 18 months. This includes any memory of ever meeting, dating, marrying and honeymooning with new husband, Kim, who is now a complete stranger to her. Evidently, Kim is devastated yet through his dedication to the wedding vows he made with her he is determined to restore the marriage relationship they once shared. Kim soon realises that if he is to win his wife back then he must literally date her all over again. God’s purpose that their life together was always meant to be is revealed in a spectacular way when their love for each other is re-kindled and they renew their marriage vows. This is a story of hope and second chances that is reminiscent of the Biblical story of Job. Recommended for pre-marital reading, this book emphasises the sanctity of marriage and the honour that should be placed on it. Inspired by the book’s ideas, a Hollywood film has been produced in recent years of the same title yet the film is in no way a replica of the Carpenter story and about the glory they have given God for healing and restoring their relationship.

citywomen BRISBANE making our city a better place for women and girls




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PARTNERS Australian Christian Lobby • Bella Magazine • Cherish Life Queensland • Churches of Christ Care City Women Toowoomba • Emily’s Voice • Hope Foundation • Indulge Magazine Priceless Life Centre • Teen Challenge Queensland

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Indulge | August/September 2013 | 59

Spring Drea The weather is warming up and the fashions are too!

Here is a look at some of the latest fabrics and styles from Mode Voyage for Spring.

Love Tanya xx 60 |

ams Indulge | August/September 2013 | 61

Hair, Makeup and Stylist: Tanya Epis Photography: Natasha Smith Assistant Stylist: Tess Belford Model: Imogen Gray Model: Lauryn Cribb Outfits courtesy of Mode Voyage 0755358824

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Indulge | August/September 2013 | 63

Healer’s Heart a new passion for Dr Cris Article & Picture:

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ou may recognise Doctor Cris Beer – she is our regular women’s health columnist, a sought after health and lifestyle consultant for radio and television, and has just added yet another accomplishment to her ever-expanding list... Dr Cris has just assumed the reigns as The Biggest Loser Retreat by Golden Door’s health, lifestyle and fitness guru. Currently practicing as a registered medical doctor on the Gold Coast, Dr Cris helps real patients with real health issues every day – and she will be on hand to do the same for the participants of The Biggest Loser Retreat, located in picturesque Gold Coast Hinterland. Whether guests are looking to lose 5kg or 50kg, Dr Cris Beer, The Biggest Loser Retreat’s official doctor and expert in nutrition and health, said an investment in your health and weight loss can save years of medical expenses later in life. “The program at the retreat is, in many cases, a viable alternative to surgical procedures for Australians who are above their most healthy, comfortable weight and the related illnesses that can occur,” she said. “Looking after yourself now is the first step to ensuring you are at your optimum healthy weight range for life. “At the Retreat, we educate people about making the right food and lifestyle choices and incorporating exercise into their daily regime. It’s very important to be active.” She also hosts several insightful healthy living workshops every week such as ‘Habits That Will Change Your Health & Waistlines’ and ‘Foxy Ladies, How to Get Your Sexy Back’. Dr Cris, who is a registered medical doctor, specialist in nutritional medicine, health coach and personal fitness trainer, focuses not just in the prevention and treatment of illnesses, but in attaining optimum health. She believes this state is “achievable for anyone”.

“I believe a person can develop resistance to illnesses that plague our society today including premature ageing, obesity, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, osteoporosis, emotional and mental health problems, as well hormonal problems by employing simple lifestyle strategies,” she said. “It doesn’t have to be about pain and sacrifices. The program is about taking small steps and incorporating your newfound knowledge into maintaining a healthy lifestyle.” Her qualifications in medicine, biomedical science, integrative and nutritional medicine, health coaching, as well as personal fitness training making her a perfect fit to support retreat guests. “Without good health we really can not achieve anything else in life to the fullest degree,” she said. “By empowering individuals to live their healthiest lives, I get a real sense of purpose and satisfaction.” The new-look, dedicated weight-loss retreat in the peaceful hinterland aims to create positive and permanent lifestyle solutions resulting in lasting weight loss and improved health.  The retreat offers a brand new tailored program aimed specifically at weight loss with activities including bush walks, team gym all-out training, aqua team challenges, H2O cardio, hill intervals, obstacle course challenges, aqua combat, weekly team challenges, spin and cardio intervals, cooking demos and classes, games nights, night walks and a graduation celebration, plus a host of educational seminars. Dr Cris believes, “A restoration of health and vitality can be achieved. It’s about making healthy lifestyle choices with simple habits; nothing too complicated. To enquire or make a booking, call 1800 816 906 or email reservations@ biggestloserretreat. Visit www.  Indulge | August/September 2013 | 65

How to Be Your Own Doctor Article: Dr Cris Beer Image:

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ur bodies are made to heal. Furthermore, our bodies are remarkably hardy. I am often surprised that some people are not sicker than they are given the way they treat their bodies. But like anything, there is only so much one’s body can take. This is the principle of homeostatic reserve, which simply refers to how much our body can handle before it breaks. Before we get to this breaking point, our bodies are remarkably forgiving. But better than just living on the edge of illness, or simply just not feeling great, is a place of wellness. This place of wellness is easier to achieve than we realise. Given the right conditions our bodies will naturally move towards this. So what are the right conditions to create wellness and essentially avoid a substantial amount of illness in our lives? The Right Fluid – This is by far the most important step. Getting our hydration right is key to curbing appetite, improving cellular metabolism, and

reducing fatigue1. Many of us do not drink enough of nature’s elixir – water. One reason for this is people say that they don’t like the taste of water. Interestingly our taste buds only request what they are used to. So if our taste buds are used to sugary or caffeinated drinks they will respond with repulsion to anything that is blander, including water. But there is hope! It takes about 30 days to re-train our taste buds so any of us can get used to drinking water. The Right Fuel – Likewise with water we can re-train our taste buds to enjoy fresh, unprocessed foods. If our taste buds are used to high fat, high salt, and/or high sugar foods then this retraining can take time, but with consistency we can learn to enjoy foods that our body really needs. I like to advocate living by the 80:20 rule with 80 percent of our diet being fresh, unprocessed foods and 20 percent of our diet being everything else including indulgences. This is balanced eating. The Right Rest- This next step toward wellness is by far one of the hardest to achieve. It involves getting enough sleep per night2. This in itself can be a struggle for individuals for various reasons. The average adult requires 7-9 hours of sleep per evening2. Not only do we require sleep but we also require quality rest. This rest is meant to be restorative and allow for reflection. All of us require this but many of us do not allow the margin in our schedules to truly rest. What you find restful may be different from someone else and may include going for a walk, reading, talking with a good friend, or having a massage. Whatever it is, it is important that we pencil these activities into our diaries otherwise they simply won’t happen. The Right Activity – Fascinatingly, our bodies consist of about 640 muscles attached to 206 bones. Essentially, our musculoskeletal system is one consisting of numerous pulleys and levers. Put simply, we were made to move. I like to replace the word exercise however with the word activity. Not only does activity improve heart health but also helps to regulate our metabolism, improve sleep, curb our appetites, and improve our mood3. Our aim really should be to increase our activity levels. The best form of activity of course being one you don’t know you’re even doing. This is the basis of incidental

activity. Whether this involves taking the stairs rather than the escalator, parking the car further away in the carpark, or playing an enjoyable team sport, it all adds up. The Right Attitude – This is certainly a challenge for many of us. Especially being the case if we are used to finding reasons for why we are not doing the things we know we should be doing. Too often it is easier to look for the ‘magic pill’ that will dissolve away all our body fat, improve our health and fatigue levels, and basically transform our lives. Although there are many products on the market which claim to do these things, they really will only make at most one percent of the difference to our wellbeing and waistlines. By far the majority of the difference involves a change in lifestyle. Admittedly, this takes time and consistency. But like the old adage goes, practice makes perfect. Hopefully by putting into place some of the ‘right things’ into our lives we can maximise our energy, health, and overall wellness. These principles might very well put me out of business as anyone can learn how to be their own doctor! 1 – Mayo Clinic. Nutrition and Healthy Eating. 2 – American Psychological Association. Why Sleep is Important and What Happens When You Don’t Get Enough. topics/sleep/why.aspx 3- Mayo Clinic. Exercise: 7 Benefits of Regular Physical Activity. http://

Dr Cris MBBS (hons), BBMedSci, ACNEM Primary Course, P.T. As an expert in nutritional medicine Dr Cris specialises not just in the prevention and treatment of illnesses, but in the attaining of optimum health. She believes that this state is achievable for anyone and passionately shares this message as a media personality. Dr Cris believes a person can develop resistance to illnesses by employing simple strategies. Dr Cris has compiled these simple strategies from her broad studies in medicine, biomedical science, integrative and nutritional medicine, health coaching, as well as personal fitness training. She holds recognised qualifications in all these areas. For more information visit

Indulge | August/September 2013 | 67

A Basket Full of Goodies

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Cooking with Angela

Petite Cheese & Onion Tarts Makes around 36 cook in prep 30 min |  cook 30 min   4-5 sheets puff pastry 50 gms butter 4 red onions - chopped thinly 3 tbsp fresh thyme 3 eggs 150mls cream 1/3 cup parmesan cheese - grated salt and pepper to taste   1. Preheat oven to 180ºc. Cut pastry with a 6cm cutter and press into a mini muffin tray. Melt butter in a frypan and add onions. Stir over a medium heat and allow onions to soften, add thyme and combine. 2. In a bowl beat eggs and cream, season. Then add onion mixture and parmesan cheese. 3. Pour mixture into pastry cases, sprinkle with extra parmesan cheese and bake for 25 minutes or until filling is set and golden - serve warm.  

30 es! t u n i M

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Sweet Chilli Chessy Wonton Bites makes around 15-20 bites | prep 15 mins | cook 3-4 mins   1 Pkt Wonton wrappers 250gms Brie 1/4 cup sweet chilli sauce 1/4 cup chives- thinly sliced oil to fry 70 |

cook in

5 es! t u n i M

1. Cut brie into bite size pieces. Lay out the wonton wrappers. Place a piece of brie on to the middle of the wonton. Add a small teaspoon of sweet chilli sauce and a sprinkle of chives. 2. Fold into a parcel shape. 3. Fry the little parcels in oil until they are golden and crispy. 4. Serve warm with sour cream and sweet chilli sauce.

cook in

60 Sticky Chicken Wings es! t u n i M with Blue Cheese Sauce serves 6-8 | prep 30 min | cook 1 hour   1 kg chicken wings 1/3 cup soy sauce 1/3 cup tomato sauce 1/3 cup maple syrup 1 tbsp chill flakes - optional   Blue cheese sauce 1/4 cup sour cream 1/4 cup mayonnaise 80g blue cheese 2 tsp lemon juice 1 garlic clove - crushed  

1. Preheat oven to 180ºc. Place chicken wings in a large ovenproof dish. 2. Combine soy sauce, tomato sauce, maple syrup and chill in a glass jar and shake well. 4. Pour over chicken and bake for 50-60 minutes until golden and sticky - serve with blue cheese sauce. To make blue cheese sauce Place all ingredients into a blender or food processor and blend till smooth and creamy. Place in a small bowl and refrigerate. 

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An Invitation to Love... Dear Reader, Our prayer is that you would know how much you are loved by our Heavenly Father. So much so that He would send His only Son, Jesus, who would choose to die on a cross for you. It is through Jesus Christ that we can know and come into a full relationship with God. You do not have to be perfect, you just have to believe and ask Jesus to meet you where you are at in life. He will come and set you free and bring you into a peace and love that only God can offer. If you are unsure that you have a personal relationship with Jesus then we would love you to say this simple prayer.

Dear Jesus, I believe in you. I believe that you died on the cross for me. Thank you for your love. I confess that I have sinned and I wish to turn away from sin, please forgive me. Please come into my heart and change me from the inside out. Make me a new creation and let me know that I am your child. Help me to live my life for you from this day forward. amen

"This is real love: not that we loved God but that He loved us and sent His Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins." 1 John 4:10 If you have prayed this prayer, we would encourage you to find a local church and speak to a pastor. We would also love to hear from you here at Indulge eMagazine by emailing us at 72 |

Profile for Indulge Magazine

Indulge Magazine - Heal Well  

Aug/Sept 2013 Issue. For christian women who desire become whole – spirit, soul and body.

Indulge Magazine - Heal Well  

Aug/Sept 2013 Issue. For christian women who desire become whole – spirit, soul and body.