Seasons Greetings! Update On Me!🎄🎅

Dear friends,

As you may know, I opted to have an elective surgery on October 2 that left me in the hospital for a full week. When I was finally discharged, I had to go back for almost an additional week due to an infection that could’ve been prevented if the problem were detected early enough. I am happy to say I am at home now and doing much better!

I’m extremely grateful for everyday of health and healing I am able to experience. I hadn’t spent that much time in the hospital since my accident that happened when I was sixteen years old. Since the surgery, my condition has improved and I no longer have an ailment I suffered from for way too long.

I am reminded of the quote shared by the great abolitionist, Frederick Douglass, an American Slave that dates back to his book published back in 1845. The popular passage still resonates. He writes: “I date the entertainment of a deep conviction that slavery would not always hold me within its foul embrace, and in the darkest hours of my career this living word of faith and spirit of hope departed not from me but remained like ministering angels to cheer me through the gloom.”

He continues, “This good spirit was from God and to Him I offer thanksgiving and praise!” How does this timeless verse relate to me?  Well, it doesn’t–directly. As a survivor, I can choose to take the victim mentality though and not try to accomplish all I know I can. But Douglass stood up for his rights and even taught himself how to read and write, and I have rights, too. I am not limited in my abilities because no one knows what God can do.

What Douglass wrote speaks to my soul and it can speak to yours, also. His knowledge of God and the fact that He would set him free is parallel with my knowledge that God will set me free of any bondage in my predicament, thoughts, or attitude. Your challenge may be different from my own, but how can you apply this passage by Frederick Douglass to your own life?

What are you confident about and know you will overcome? Have you ever felt caught up in a situation you didn’t know you could get out of? Did you just know you’d be freed from it? Sometimes we just know that God will deliver us! Was there a time when you knew that only He could help you? Feel free to openly share with me in the comments. I’d love to read your thoughts and get back to you.

May you have a very Merry Christmas and may the Lord Jesus be with you this holiday season and all the days of your lives,

~Zina Hermez

P.S. I was wondering if you were able to catch my Facebook Live interview this past August with Patricia Durgin, the Christian Message coach, from Marketers on A Mission? I recount details of my book Not Without God : A Story of Survival and talk about the accident I was in as a teenager, how I overcame through my faith in the Lord, hard work, and determination.

I also get in depth about my upcoming one, Hope After the Storm. It will be the second in my II part, Not Without God series. In the video, I explain the structure and how it is designed. It’s a narrative like my first, but it gives readers an opportunity to also reflect and write in journal sections at the end of chapters. I also give tips on how to market or pre-launch your own book material or message.

It will help even if you have a desire to write but don’t know how to get started! Click the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0DHHYE3QDJE

Why We Celebrate Easter (special)

This is a video I uploaded on Good Friday to my “Faith Tips” series on YouTube. Instead of writing a post as I regularly do bi-weekly/on holidays, I decided to create a video blog!!! It’s cut a little short, but I hope you enjoy it.

About Zina

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

A Holiday Letter

Christmas gift suggestions: To your enemy, forgiveness. To an opponent, tolerance. To a friend, your heart. To a customer, service. To all, charity. To every child, a good example. To yourself, respect.” –Oren Arnold

Dear friends,

I have some exciting news to share with all of you. I’m happy to announce that my first book, “Not Without God: A Story of Survival” will be released in the spring/summer of 2014 by Morgan James Publishing, http://publishing.morgan-james.com/.

It chronicles how I dealt with and overcame debilitating injuries that left me paralyzed after my accident. It’s about how I walked again through my faith, hard work, and determination.

How I was able to get through college and earn two degrees. How I became a successful teacher. How I’m independent and able to take care of myself.

It offers hope, insight, and ways to heal not just for people with disabilities but for anyone facing adversity in their life. My prayer is that it inspires anyone dealing with any kind of challenge.

I couldn’t ask for a greater Christmas present!

I would like to thank you, my readers who have supported me on my writing journey since I started this blog in June of 2012. It feels surreal. I can’t wait to hold my published book in my hands!

My life has changed so much these last two years. I’ve been active in writer’s groups both off-line and on-line. The blogging and writing courses I’ve taken have helped me strengthen and develop my craft.

I’ve always enjoyed teaching and I have been an educator for over ten years. I have taught multiple subjects to hundreds of students of all ages, from many different backgrounds and cultures.

But the reason I majored in English was not primarily to teach, it was to write. I feel so blessed now that I’m doing what I’ve always dreamed.

Merry Christmas to all!

7 Tips to Keep the Holiday Cheer!

Have you thought about your goals this holiday season? Any New Year’s resolutions? Have you thought about ways to stay healthy? Or keep the holiday cheer? Holidays are fun but can be a demanding, busy time as we try to meet the needs of our family and friends. There are gifts to be bought, turkeys to be cooked, and trees to be put up!

During this hectic period, it’s easy to feel a lot of stress. In giving, the giver feels just as rewarded as the receiver, if not more. However, we sometimes forget to give to ourselves. In your time of giving, don’t neglect your own needs. This will help to reduce anxiety, and keep you calm throughout the season.

Would you like to improve your finances? Volunteer? Do you want to feed the poor? Maybe you want to make some healthy lifestyle choices such as eating better, or losing weight? Whatever your goals, I wish you success!

Let’s prepare to stay merry. Here are some tips to keep you in the holiday spirit!

  1. Be thankful – Nurture a thankful heart. It’s hard to be unhappy when your heart is brimming with thanks! By changing your attitude, you can experience joy even when circumstances don’t change.
  2. Trust – Develop the trust that life will provide you with what you need. Serenity comes from contentment with what you have.
  3. Forgive – Let go of resentment and remorse which wastes energy on yesterday. Forgive and live today.
  4. Give to yourself – Give yourself compassion and understanding. Recognize your abilities and value.
  5. Savor life – Enjoy the taste of cranberry bread, the smell of Christmas cookies, the sight of sunrise.
  6. Do something for someone in need – Write a letter to a lonely friend, make a phone call to an ill relative, or bake a pumpkin pie to welcome your new neighbors.
  7. Love – Remember the deeper truth of life – you are loved. When you feel holiday stress, remember the voice of God who beckons, “Come to me when you are weary, and I will give you rest.”

May your holiday and New Year be filled with joy, happiness, and peace.

Happy Thanksgiving!

–  This holiday letter is reposted from a newsletter I edited for health care