World Mental Health Day – October 10th

Mental Health is an issue near to the heart of Pastor Ed Boston. Coming from a family where issues with depression and anxiety have been inherited in at least 5 generations, he believes that the Christian community as a whole needs to learn more about this topic. The days where we told people to just pull their boots up and move on or that you wouldn’t have issues like this if you had faith in God need to be a thing of the past.

While he is normally not a big supporter of the WHO (World Health Organization), Pastor Ed says that not addressing this issue would be negligent on his part.

As part of the buildup to Sunday’s World Mental Health Day, each day Pastor Ed is posting a YouTube video he found relating to this topic. The first one is this.

Read more about World Mental Health Day below.

World Mental Health Day was celebrated for the first time on October 10, 1992, at the initiative of Deputy Secretary General Richard Hunter. Up until 1994, the day had no specific theme other than general promoting mental health advocacy and educating the public.

In 1994 World Mental Health Day was celebrated with a theme for the first time at the suggestion of then Secretary General Eugene Brody. The theme was “Improving the Quality of Mental Health Services throughout the World”.

World Mental Health Day is supported by WHO through raising awareness on mental health issues using its strong relationships with the Ministries of health and civil society organizations across the globe. WHO also supports with developing technical and communication material.

MORE HISTORY ON WORLD MENTAL HEALTH DAY

World Mental Health Day was first observed on October 10, 1992. It was created by then-Deputy Secretary-General of the World Federation for Mental Health (WFMH), American psychiatrist Richard Hunter, as an annual activity of that NGO, consisting of professionals, paraprofessionals and interested individuals devoted to advocacy, education and prevention of mental disorders. Since then, the Day has been commemorated every year on October 10 by the UN, civil society groups and individuals around the world. The first three years of World Mental Health Day were a two-hour telecast broadcasted globally from the United States information agency satellite system in Tallahassee, Florida, with board members  able to participate from other countries, like Australia, Chile, England, Zambia, Geneva and Mexico City.  During the first broadcast, people from Swaziland called in, and viewed the program, unannounced and unanticipated, proving to WFMH leaders that their initiative was far-reaching and significant.

The aims of the celebration have always been to promote mental health advocacy and educate the public on relevant issues in mental health. The first theme was identified in 1994, called, “Improving the Quality of Mental Health Services throughout the World.” Feedback reports came in from 27 countries, especially Australia and England, leading to more excitement about the project, that within the next three years became a valuable occasion for nations, NGOs, and all people around the world, to learn about and commit to improving, mental health care and access for everyone. 

Since 1994, the yearly themes have covered a wide range of topics, e.g.,  women, children, human rights, chronic physical illnesses and diversity. This year’s theme was “Mental Health for All Greater Investment – Greater Access.” (WFMH, 2020). The World Health Organization (WHO) has also sponsored the events every year, such as “Dignity in Mental Health” in 2015, “Psychological First Aid” in 2016 “Mental Health in the Workplace” in 2017, “Young People and Mental Health are Changing” in 2018 and “Focus on Suicide Prevention” in 2019.

Latest Email from Victor Marx and All Things Possible

Greetings,
We’re so thankful for all your prayers over the last few weeks as we are creating strategies and plans to help our brothers and sisters in Afghanistan.
We always want to keep you up to date on our work in the Middle East.
Here’s the latest:

  • We’re still supporting some nonstandard evacuation operations but are pushing most of them to Save Our Allies. They are equipped and ready to coordinate these types of efforts long-term.
  • The Common Operating Picture (COP) — We’re still focused on developing a central place for organizations like ours to coordinate manifests, resources and plans. Quiet Professionals and Echo Analytics Group are refining a product we hope will be the focal point for many of these disparate efforts. (We’re considering repurposing the COP to counter sex trafficking and/or the migrant problem.)
  • We’re still watching events in the Panjshir Valley to see if and when humanitarian help will be allowed in.
  • We’re exploring other organizations to be our long-term partner in resettling Afghan families. React.org is the leading group that we want to work with.

As always, we are asking for continued PRAYER for our team and in each of these areas. 
We’re also grateful for any financial support you’re able to give as we continue this important work.

When you GIVE to our programs, here’s where your support is going: 

  • There are a handful of Afghan families we’re directly funding. Most are family members of ATP friends and others we happened to pair up with amid the chaos of the fall of Kabul.
  • We’re pushing money into Afghanistan to assist in hiding some Afghans being hunted by the Taliban. There aren’t many of these cases, but we’re helping them survive until other options are available.
  • ATP is providing lodging and food for hundreds of Afghans sitting at Mazer-e Sharif in northern Afghanistan as they await flights out. A few flights went out recently, but many more are needed soon.
  • With your support, we’re creating Lions and Lambs in Dari and Farsi to provide trauma relief to Afghan children scattered across the world. We ordered 35,000.
  • We’re connecting with various locations in the United States to see where we can assist the refugees.

This work is far from over, but we’re grateful for any monthly and one-time gifts you’re able to provide. 


Would you partner with us today in supporting our work in Afghanistan and around the world? (Click on the picture and the donate section is at the bottom of that page. Pastor Ed)

As always, THANK YOU. We’re so grateful for your continued support as we seek to bring light and hope to some of the world’s darkest places.

Victor Marx

Founder & President

All Things Possible Ministries &

The Victor Marx Group

The Afghanistan Aftermath

AUTHOR: DR. JAMES DOBSON

Dear Friends,

I must share with you what is gnawing at my spirit today. It is obvious that the mainstream media has decided to “move on” from the tragedy of Afghanistan. They apparently believe it undermines their narrative of what happened and why. Thus, it is likely that there will be no accountability for the mistakes that resulted in the needless deaths of 13 U.S. service members and more than 180 desperate Afghans who perished on a street in Kabul.1 Watching the news coverage of this carnage was gut-wrenching for viewers. Nevertheless, liberal reporters are ignoring the past and changing the subject. Most politicians obviously agree.

Neither Democrats nor Republicans appear eager to find out why Bagram Airfield was abandoned or why billions of dollars-worth of our state-of-the-art military weaponry and equipment was handed over to some of the most dangerous terrorists in the world.2 Remember that the Taliban provided a safe haven for Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda. They were responsible for the destruction of the World Trade Center on 9/11. Now they are fortified by one of the best equipped militias on earth. Shouldn’t we find out which generals, admirals, politicians, and advisors engineered this disaster? To date, they have paid no price for their malfeasance.

President Joe Biden, who as Commander in Chief made the ultimate decision. He acknowledged during one of his concluding press conferences that some American citizens would be trapped in enemy territory after the pull out. He expressed no compassion for the Afghans who risked their lives serving the Americans as translators. Biden clearly knew they and some Americans would be abandoned.3 4 America betrayed these people and broke our promises to them. An unknown number of these unfortunate “friends” are in the clutches of the Taliban today. Every indication is that they and many Christians are being slaughtered unmercifully.5

Deeply disturbing reports have emerged from Christian organizations and other witnesses, relaying unthinkable accounts of mass murder occurring in Afghanistan. One of these reports is titled Taliban Going Door to Door Seeking Christians, Searching Through Phones for Bible Apps. It was written by Jon Brown, of Daily Wire, and I quote:
 

An underground church that partners with Frontier Alliance International (FAI) has reported that the Taliban are targeting Christians for death. According to FAI:

The Taliban has a hit list of known Christians they are targeting to pursue and kill. The US Embassy is defunct and there is no longer a safe place for believers to take refuge. All borders to neighboring countries are closed and all flights to and from have been halted, with the exception of private planes. People are fleeing into the mountains, looking for asylum. They are fully reliant on God, who is the only One who can and will protect them.

The Taliban are going door-to-door taking women and children. The people must mark their house with an “X” if they have a girl over 12 years old, so that the Taliban can take them. If they find a young girl and the house was not marked they will execute the entire family. If a married woman 25 years or older has been found, the Taliban promptly kill her husband, do whatever they want to her, and then sell her as a sex slave.

Husbands and fathers have given their wives and daughters guns and told them that when the Taliban come, they can choose to kill them or kill themselves—it is their choice.

Taliban are also reportedly rifling through people’s phones to look for any apps that would give them away as Christians.

“We’re hearing from reliable sources that the Taliban demand people’s phones, and if they find a downloaded Bible on your device, they will kill you immediately,” said Dr. Rex Rogers, who is president of the Christian nonprofit organization SAT-7 North America, according to Religion News Service. “It’s incredibly dangerous right now for Afghans to have anything Christian on their phones. The Taliban have spies and informants everywhere.”

“Because it’s so dangerous to seek the company of other Christians, many Afghan believers are totally alone, with not even one other Christian with whom to talk,” Rogers said. “Our local director told me: ‘Most dare not attend a house church. They’re alone, fearful, and looking to us. We’re their last resort.'”

According to a video released by FAI, a member of the underground church in Afghanistan wept as he described the situation unfolding as the Taliban quickly resumes the reins of power.

“We are unable to control our emotions because we’ve worked so hard for 20 years,” the man said, whose grief was apparent despite his blurred face and disguised voice. “All of our work over the past 20 years has been lost overnight. Only God understands how much pain we have and how broken our hearts are. We are not crying out of fear, but because our hearts ache for our beautiful country. It has now been destroyed by this savage and extremist group. Claiming the whole world has abandoned us, the man went on to assert, “We are not leaving the field, we will fight harder and will continue in God’s work.”


“I’m sorry I cried and became emotional,” he later added. “My heart hurts.” 6
 

Surely, we Christians in America must be praying fervently for these brothers and sisters who are being massacred, even as I write. Their children are being abducted and/or left as orphans. Evil continues to envelop the land of Afghanistan. Only Almighty God can intervene on behalf of the families there.

Returning to our circumstances in America, the damage being done here and to our allies is enormous. Perhaps you saw Tucker Carlson’s television show on the evening of the bombing. He interviewed Miranda Devine. She is an Australian and a columnist for the New York Post. Tucker asked her, “What do you think the rest of the world is thinking about our country and the Biden administration at this moment?”

Devine replied, “I hate to say it, but you know, America, in one fell swoop has managed to make itself look untrustworthy, feckless, and weak. For a country that has the best military in the world—that is the leader of the free world—that the rest of the free world looks to for leadership—it’s gone and [left] a vacuum, and everyone is scrambling to figure out what to do. I mean today in the face of this disaster, this massacre at Kabul, the President….just went missing again.”7

I ask you, does it make sense for us to ignore these blunders and simply move on? To do so implies that the war against terrorism ended with our departure from Afghanistan. Knowledgeable observers tell us that it has most certainly not. Former Secretary of Defense, Leon Panetta, a liberal and a career Democrat, obviously understands the implications. He said on CNN several weeks ago, “We’re going to have to go back in to get ISIS. We’re probably going to have to go back in when Al-Qaeda resurrects itself, as they will, with this Taliban.”8

Why would those with responsibility for protecting America continue to ignore the dangers it faces? Consider this: The Taliban, Al-Qaeda, ISIS and other terrorist groups still hope to humiliate and bring down what they call “The Great Satan.” We are sitting ducks for them as the southern border of the United States stands wide open. Also, since our ignominious surrender in Afghanistan, our politicians and generals have been importing thousands of unvetted Afghans to America and releasing them into the cultural mainstream. Common sense would tell us that there are probably huge numbers of trained terrorists within this hoard who are now planning their next move. We have to assume that it is true. We need to defend ourselves from those who hate us, yet the FBI and other intelligence entities have no idea who or where they are. The bottom line: If we do not carefully evaluate the parade of horrors that led to the tragedy of Afghanistan, AND if we fail to hold accountable those who were responsible for it, America could experience something worse than 9/11 in the future.

If you haven’t done so already, please contact your representatives today and demand that they call for a full investigation into the many failures in Afghanistan that brought us to this point. I’ll say it again for emphasis: Unless we identify the incompetent and foolish decision-makers who created the mess we are in today, those responsible for it may still be in power when the next crisis occurs. In that case, the past will be prologue.

Again, prayer is our best resource. Those of us with a Christian faith must petition our Heavenly Father for His blessings and protection. As King David wrote in Psalm 33:20, “… he is our hope and our shield.” For our part, we must never forget the lessons of 9/11—and of Afghanistan!

May God be with us.

Signature

1. Burns, Robert & Baldor, Lolita (August 30, 2021), Last troops exit Afghanistan, ending America’s longest war, AP News,
https://apnews.com/article/afghanistan-islamic-state-group-e10e038baea732dae879c11234507f81
2. Kheel, Rebecca (August 19, 2021), Billions in US weaponry seized by Taliban, The Hill,
https://thehill.com/policy/defense/568493-billions-in-us-weaponry-seized-by-taliban
3. Transcript & Video (August 26, 2021), President Biden Remarks on Suicide Bombing in Kabul, C-SPAN,
https://www.cspan.org/video/?514304-1/president-biden-terrorists-we-hunt-make-pay
4. Nichols, Tom (August 26, 2021), A Bungled Mess, The Atlantic,
https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2021/08/biden-afghanistan-policy/619902/
5. Morris, Andrea (August 23, 2021), ‘We Are Coming for You’: Afghanistan’s Christians Continue to Call for Prayers Amid Reports of Taliban Persecution, CBN News,
https://www1.cbn.com/cbnnews/cwn/2021/august/we-are-coming-for-you-afghanistans-christians-continue-to- call-for-prayers-amid-reports-of-taliban-persecution
6. Brown, Jon (August 19, 2021), Taliban Going Door To Door Seeking Christians, Searching Through Phones For Bible Apps: Report, The Daily Wire,
https://www.dailywire.com/news/taliban-going-door-to-door-seeking-christians-searching-through-phones-for-bible-apps-report
7. Carlson, Tucker (August 27, 2021), Tucker Carlson interview of Miranda Devine, “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” Fox News Television,
https://www.foxnews.com/transcript/tucker-carlson-tonight-on-afghanistan-violence-chaos
8. Burnett, Erin (August 26, 2021), Erin Burnett interview of Leon Panetta, “Erin Burnett OutFront,” CNN,
https://transcripts.cnn.com/show/ebo/date/2021-08-26/segment/01


This letter may be reproduced without change and in its entirety for non-commercial and non-political purposes without prior permission from Family Talk. Copyright, 2021 Family Talk. All Rights Reserved. International Copyright Secured. Printed in the U.S. Dr. James Dobson’s Family Talk is not affiliated with Focus on the Family.

Pastor Ed Boston Interviews Michael Feighan

Multi-talented Michael Feighan to Release Solo Project Someone Prayed Oct. 15, 2021; First Single “I Still Believe” Available Aug. 27, 2021

 July 30, 2021 (Crystal Beach, Texas) — Notable artist/drummer/songwriter, Michael Feighan, will release his solo project, Someone Prayed, on Oct. 15, 2021. Besides delivering great vocals and music, Feighan has assembled an incredible team for the project. Matt Bissonette (Elton John, Ringo Starr) joined as producer for Someone Prayed, while his brother, Gregg Bissonette (Ringo Starr), added his drumming expertise for the EP and five-time Grammy® Award-winning engineer, Chris Lord-Alge (Bruce Springsteen, Tina Turner, Tim McGraw) brings his talent to the mix. The project will be released through Label Logic, with distribution being handled by Ingrooves.

The first single, “I Still Believe,” will release on Aug. 27, 2021 and will be available on all digital outlets. It’s a patriotic song that honors our military during Labor Day, September 11th and any day that salutes our nation. The single was co-written by Michael and Matt Bissonette, and fulfills Michael and his dad’s, Chief Master Sargent Mike Feighan, love for our country.

“Working with Michael has been an amazing blessing in my life,” said Matt. “Our friends from Label Logic put us together and we began writing songs together. I knew Michael was a really good singer, and a great drummer as well, but was blown away at what an amazing performer he is in the studio. He really brought all the songs to another level and his lyric skills really made it easy to write the songs. But more important than that, he is a great human being with a desire to honor God in everything. God first, everything else follows. It’s a great motto and principle that humbled me and made me want to do the same. What an amazing honor it is to work with this blessed man.”

Someone Prayed is a four song EP, which includes the title track and “I Still Believe,” with two additional songs that were written for his wife and daughter. “Joy of Life” centers on the difficulties that his wife, Christie, faced during a rough period of time, and Michael’s musical message centered on the joy of Christ.  Jesus, give me the faith that will move every mountain/And teach me to trust You always/Father teach me Your ways that I want to be my ways/And give me the Joy of life today. “Before Time Began” is a loving message to his daughter, Tatiana, after Michael and Christie flew to Russia and brought their daughter home to Texas after her adoption.

“Writing with Matt on this project was a dream come true, and one of the songs we did together was especially rewarding,” said Feighan. “I had some previous lyrics that I had written about my daughter, Tatiana. My wife and I adopted her from Russia, and I thought it would be great to have Matt talk about his son in the second verse. He came up with the idea for the third verse that puts it all together, and how we are all God’s adopted children—and one day in heaven He will be looking back at us. This song came out very powerful!”

Michael’s high-profile career began when he joined the Christian metal band Whitecross, and he was ranked as of the top 10 drummers in Christian music. The group’s music grew around the world that included the states, South America and Europe, and led to three Dove Awards for recordings with Triumphant Return (1990), In The Kingdom (1992) and “Come Unto The Light” (1994). 

Michael became an on-demand drummer that led to other opportunities outside of Whitecross. This included being signed to Star Song Music (1991-1993), R.E.X Music (1994-1995), Madison Line Records (2013), playing with Curious Fools on the Gotee label in 1997, performing with Oz Fox of Stryper and pop artist B.J. Thomas.

For more information about Michael and Someone Prayed, fans can visit his website and on social media at Facebook, and Instagram.

New Podcast: Natasha Owens Releases “Stand”

The latest podcast feature Christian music artist Natasha Owens talking about her new album “Stand”. Natasha and Pastor Ed also discuss what’s keeping her busy, a women’s conference she’s hosting and a discussion on church lockdowns and it’s effect on mental health issue. Go here to listen: https://anchor.fm/edboston/episodes/Natasha-Owens-Releases-Stand-e163u34

Christian Music Powerhouse Natasha Owens Takes a “Stand” with New Album Produced by Ian Eskelin
Christian music powerhouse Natasha Owens returns August 6th with her latest studio album, Stand, a 12-track testament to perseverance and empowerment that finds her reconnecting with longtime label home Radiate Music and GRAMMY-nominated and multiple Dove Award-winning producer/songwriter/fellow artist Ian Eskelin. 

“Through the last year or so, there has been a lot of chaos going on in our world,” observes Owens. “It’s incredibly easy to look around us and instantly become anxious and fearful at all that we see. But there is a hope that I have found that is stronger than the enemy that tries to intimidate us; His name is Jesus.”

The album’s just-released lead single, “Lion,” takes the chaos of the past year head on, reminding us to move forward no matter how insurmountable one’s surrounding circumstances may seem.

“This song has driven me by the truth that our King is bold, fearless and courageous,” Owens explains. “Revelation 5:5 refers to Jesus as the Lion of the Tribe of Judah who prevails. Instantly, I was then reminded of Proverbs 28:1 that promises us that the righteous are as bold as a lion. What a declaration! He is our defender and has given us the strength to stand in boldness without fear. This is our battle cry.”

Other standouts on Stand include the joyful sentiments of “Fly,” the praise-fueled acoustic tenderness of “Hallelujah,” a stunning tribute to a lost loved one, “Home,” and the optimistic closing anthem, simply titled “Yes.”  

“Even when every door seems closed, there’s no need to second guess. You know what’s best,” she confidently sings in the latter. “Every time you tell me ‘no,’ it means that there’s a better ‘yes.’”

There’s even a throwback to Owens’ previous project with the bonus track, “Warrior,” a brand new rendition of the modern classic recorded live in front of a roaring crowd. 

“I want to show people that they can make it, too,” Owens asserts. “Being a warrior means that my wounds have healed, but I still have the scars to prove it. The scars remind me that I don’t have to worry about the next battle because I know God will be standing with me.”

As Owens plans to return to touring and as host of the national Christian women’s conference known as the Warrior Event, she’s looking forward to sharing her courageous story as a means to inspire others, while always making sure to meet listeners exactly where they’re at.

“So many people are at different stages of their story,” she says. “In any crowd you have people ranging from being at the beginning of their grief all the way to being overcomers. I’m taking people on the full journey, making them feel all of these emotions, but leaving feeling hopeful.”

Owens’ path to a successful music career is unique, rooted in agonizing heartache and unbelievable tragedy. Seven years ago, her father died suddenly while cleaning his guns when one misfired, placing a bullet in his chest. The themes of grief, heartbreak, and redemption permeate throughout her music, which served as therapy for her along the way.

Today, she is intently focused on being a proactive and prayerful advocate for mental health awareness. She has been open about her battle with severe depression, and her season of extreme lows brought on by tragedy. But she’s quick to share how God showed up in the most magnificent way. “He said, ‘trust in Me that I’ve guided you this far and I’m not gonna let you down now.’”   Owens knows that God has kept that promise, and Stand brings it all full-circle.

Owens will hit the road this summer performing at multiple festivals, sharing the main stage with Michael W. Smith, Newsboys, Danny Gokey, Matthew West, Skillet, Mandisa, Colton Dixon and many more. Plans for a fall tour and a Christmas tour are also underway. To view her complete concert schedule, visit the official website at http://natashaowensmusic.com

About Natasha Owens: Owens exploded onto the Christian Music scene with her 2016 debut, No One But You. She suddenly found herself touring as the opening act for Christian Music’s most iconic artists, including Michael W. Smith and Jason Crabb. Her 2017 follow-up, We Will Rise, was named “Inspirational Album of the Year” at the 2018 We Love Christian Music Awards. And in 2019, Owens signed to Radiate Music and released her third album, Warrior, produced and co-written by award-winning producer Ian Eskelin (Francesca Battistelli, Sidewalk Prophets). During the downtime the pandemic provided, she recorded and released the jazzy holiday album, Christmas Memoriesin the fall of 2020.Instantly relatable, Owens has quickly resonated with listeners and has had extensive media coverage including appearances on Fox News, Newsmax and HLN, among others. She has toured with some of Christian Music’s bestselling artists, including Michael W. Smith, Kutless, JJ Weeks, Ryan Stevenson, Jason Crabb, Matthew West, 7eventh Time Down, Audio Adrenaline, Point of Grace and more.


About Radiate Music: Founded by Ian Eskelin, Radiate Music launched summer 2015. Eskelin’s 20-plus-year resume in the music business, ranging from being a recording artist to a record executive, gives him a unique perspective in partnering with artists who are passionate about impacting culture with music. Eskelin, who has recorded more than 50 Top 10 singles in the United States alone, including 20 No. 1 songs, and whose songs have been licensed for use by ABC, NBC, CBS, ESPN and many feature films, is looking to break additional ground with Radiate. In addition to King, Radiate’s artist roster includes, Natasha Owens, JJ Weeks, About A Mile, Attaboy, John Waller, and Inspiration Worship.

From the VA: Afghanistan: Let’s Talk About It

Veterans from all eras are reacting to the events in Afghanistan, such as the U.S withdrawal and the takeover by the Taliban.

You are not alone.

Veterans may question the meaning of their service or whether it was worth the sacrifices they made. They may feel more moral distress about experiences they had during their service. It’s normal to feel this way. Talk with your friends and families, reach out to battle buddies, connect with a peer-to-peer network, or sign up for mental health services. Scroll down for a list common reactions and coping advice.
Resources available right now

Veterans Crisis Line – If you are having thoughts of suicide, call 1-800-273-8255, then PRESS 1 or visit http://www.veteranscrisisline.net/For emergency mental health care, you can also go directly to your local VA medical center 24/7 regardless of your discharge status or enrollment in other VA health care.

Vet Centers – Discuss how you feel with other Veterans in these community-based counseling centers. 70% of Vet Center staff are Veterans. Call 1-877-927-8387 or find one near you.

VA Mental Health Services Guide – This guide will help you sign up and access mental health services.

MakeTheConnection.net – information, resources, and Veteran to Veteran videos for challenging life events and experiences with mental health issues.

RallyPoint – Talk to other Veterans online. Discuss: What are your feelings as the Taliban reclaim Afghanistan after 20 years of US involvement?

Download VA’s self-help apps – Tools to help deal with common reactions like, stress, sadness, and anxiety. You can also track your symptoms over time.

Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) –  Request a Peer Mentor

VA Women Veterans Call Center – Call or text 1-855-829-6636 (M-F 8AM – 10PM & SAT 8AM – 6:30PM ET)

VA Caregiver Support Line – Call 1-855-260-3274 (M-F 8AM – 10PM & SAT 8AM – 5PM ET)

Together We Served –Find your battle buddies through unit pages

George W. Bush Institute – Need help or want to talk? Check In or call:1-630-522-4904 or email: checkin@veteranwellnessalliance.org

Elizabeth Dole Foundation Hidden Heroes – Join the Community

American Red Cross Military Veteran Caregiver Network – Peer Support and Mentoring

Team Red, White & Blue – Hundreds of events weekly. Find a chapter in your area.

Student Veterans of America – Find a campus chapter to connect with.

Team Rubicon – Find a local support squad.
Common Reactions
In reaction to current events in Afghanistan, Veterans may:

Feel frustrated, sad, helpless, grief or distressed
Feel angry or betrayed
Experience an increase in mental health symptoms like symptoms of PTSD or depression
Sleep poorly, drink more or use more drugs 
Try to avoid all reminders or media or shy away from social situations
Have more military and homecoming memories

Veterans may question the meaning of their service or whether it was worth the sacrifices they made. They may feel more moral distress about experiences they had during their service.

Veterans may feel like they need to expect and/or prepare for the worst. For example, they may:

Become overly protective, vigilant, and guarded
Become preoccupied by danger
Feel a need to avoid being shocked by, or unprepared for, what may happen in the future

Feeling distress is a normal reaction to negative events, especially ones that feel personal. It can be helpful to let yourself feel those feelings rather than try to avoid them. Often, these feelings will naturally run their course. If they continue without easing up or if you feel overwhelmed by them, the suggestions below can be helpful.

Strategies for Managing Ongoing Distress

At this moment, it may seem like all is lost, like your service or your sacrifices were for nothing. Consider the ways that your service made a difference, the impact it had on others’ lives or on your own life. Remember that now is just one moment in time and that things will continue to change.

It can be helpful to focus on the present and to engage in the activities that are most meaningful and valuable to you. Is there something you can do today that is important to you?  This can be as an individual, a family member, a parent, or a community member. Something that is meaningful to you in regard to your work or your spirituality? Such activities won’t change the past or the things you can’t control, but they can help life feel meaningful and reduce distress, despite the things you cannot change.

It can also help to consider your thinking. Ask yourself if your thoughts are helpful to you right now. Are there ways you can change your thinking to be more accurate and less distressing? For example, are you using extreme thinking where you see the situation as all bad or all good?  If so, try and think in less extreme terms. For example, rather than thinking “my service in Afghanistan was useless” consider instead “I helped keep Afghanistan safe.”

Finally, consider more general coping strategies that you may want to try including:

Engage in Positive Activities. Try to engage in positive, healthy, or meaningful activities, even if they are small, simple actions. Doing things that are rewarding, meaningful, or enjoyable, even if you don’t feel like it, can make you feel better.

Stay Connected. Spend time with people who give you a sense of security, calm, or happiness, or those who best understand what you are going through.

Practice Good Self Care. Look for positive coping strategies that help you manage your emotions. Listening to music, exercising, practicing breathing routines, spending time in nature or with animals, journaling, or reading inspirational text are some simple ways to help manage overwhelming or distressing emotions.

Stick to Your Routines. It can be helpful to stick to a schedule for when you sleep, eat, work, and do other day-to-day activities.

Limit Media Exposure. Limit how much news you take in if media coverage is increasing your distress.

Use a mobile app. Consider one of VA’s self-help apps (see https://www.ptsd.va.gov/appvid/mobile/) such as PTSD Coach which has tools that can help you deal with common reactions like, stress, sadness, and anxiety. You can also track your symptoms over time.

PTSD Coach Online. A series of online video coaches will guide you through 17 tools to help you manage stress. PTSD Coach Online is used on a computer, rather than a mobile device, and therefore can offer tools that involve writing.

If you develop your own ways of adapting to ongoing events and situations, you may gain a stronger sense of being able to deal with challenges, a greater sense of meaning or purpose, and an ability to mentor and support others in similar situations.

Friend of the Ministry – Gretchen Keskeys Releases “20 Years”

Friend of the Ministry/Podcast, Gretchen Keskeys just dropped a new video named “20 Years” in remembrance of 9/11/2001. In a private message with Gretchen, she told me,

“I just pray it’s an encouragement to this country as we look back at that time at what our country can be when we are united”.

Gretchen Keskeys Remembers 9/11 with Heartfelt “20 Years” Single and Video
Christian music songstress Gretchen Keskeys pays tribute to the 20th anniversary of 9/11 with the heartfelt new single, “20 Years.” The music video, which she hand-curated, picking out and editing the content to match her vision, can be viewed now at her official YouTube channel. Watch the “20 Years” video here: https://youtu.be/WBMbicQfiHMGretchen was a young wife and mother to a one year-old when the terror attacks of September 11, 2001 took place. Rising early that day, she turned on the TV and sat down with a cup of coffee. Nothing could have prepared her for what she was about to see.”I had just turned on the news right as the second plane hit the South Tower,” she said. “Within minutes I was on the floor in tears crying out loud to God.”Her thoughts immediately went to her baby daughter and what this could mean for her. Would her husband, a firefighter, need to go into work (he did), and would he be in danger? And she watched in pure horror, agony and heartbreak as the videos began to come in of those in the towers trying to escape the flames. For every American, that day was traumatic. But up out of the ashes, something beautiful emerged in the days and weeks to come. Gretchen remembers, “There was a true and deep humbling that happened. We truly felt helpless. And God was our help and refuge. We WANTED to go to church. We found comfort and strength being near God and each other. We WANTED God to BLESS our nation. It was no longer about ‘me,’ it was about ‘us.’ And OUR nation. OUR country. We cared about each other and wanted to do everything we could to protect our nation.”  What we experienced in the aftermath of 9/11 was, as Gretchen calls it, “the most beautiful outpouring of love and patriotism and brotherly love and camaraderie that we have ever seen in this country.” We couldn’t thank our police and firefighters enough.  Throughout Gretchen’s life, when something has touched her heart, or broken it, she’s written about it. And 9/11 is no exception. For most Americans, it broke us in ways we could have never expected.As the chorus states…

And in the sadness there was beauty
A country bound as one in unity
That day back then our toughest test
But that was America at its best


Adds Gretchen, “I wrote this song with all of this on my heart as we remember the 20th Anniversary of September 11, 2001.”Gretchen’s upcoming fourth studio album, Her Faith, will be released this fall. Inspired in part by the trials and tribulations of 2020, and her own experience, Gretchen penned each song on the new project, which she says focuses on the hope of Christ and His help and strength to endure tough times.



About Gretchen Keskeys: Inspirational singer-songwriter Gretchen Keskeys released her third studio album, “Words of Truth” (Creative Soul Records), in 2019. Over the last 5 years, Christian music fans have quickly embraced Keskeys as one of the most powerful female voices in the genre. She stormed onto the scene in 2016 with her debut album, “Walking in the Spirit,” and 2017’s follow up, “Pure Hope.” She’s appeared on Fox News Channel, and has made frequent appearances on Christian television programs nationwide. Keskeys regularly performs at churches, events and women’s conferences nationwide, where she openly shares her songs alongside an inspirational testimony detailing her complete deliverance from anxiety and depression. And she is also a regular worship leader at the Folsom Women’s Facility at Folsom Prison. For more information, visit the official website at www.gretchenkeskeys.com and “Like” Gretchen Keskeys Music on Facebook.

Check Us Out On TikTok!

As a ministry, we are always looking for new ways to get the Word of Jesus Christ out to more people. Having noticed numerous Pastors who are using this way of communicating, including Pastor Greg Locke – who I admire his work greatly, I have decided to test the waters.

Go here to see all of our videos, and if you feel led, “Follow” us.

Email from Lila Rose and Live Action

Ed,

I have something important to share with you …

Here’s a quote from a man we interviewed in Miami:

“I’m pro-abortion. That sounds bad, but I think that people should have the choice if they’re not ready.”

Have you ever heard someone make this statement about abortion before? How does it make you feel?

Do you think people with this perspective can change their minds?

In 5 short minutes, this man changed from pro-abortion advocate, to someone who is moved by the value of life. See his reaction here:

https://www.liveaction.org/mots-ep1/

Here’s the truth: Anyone can change. And in just 5 minutes, that’s exactly what happened with this man in Miami.

All it took was a little bit of education and an honest conversation. When we share the truth about abortion, hearts and minds change.

If you ever feel like you can’t make a difference in ending abortion, know that you can. One conversation at a time.

I’m grateful to be in these transformational efforts with you!

For life,

Lila Rose
Founder and President