Resigned to the Situation, by Paula Rose Michelson

If Casa de Naomi: The House of Blessing took place today, what Naomi experiences would be classified at Human Trafficking. For The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, defines this crime against humanity as “…an act of recruiting, transporting, transferring, harboring or receiving a person through a use of force, coercion or other means, for the purpose of exploiting them.”

I bring this up because the public discourse about illegal immigrants changed when the category of Human Trafficking was accepted and, “…the UNODC, as guardian of the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (UNTOC) and the Protocols thereto, assists States in their efforts to implement the  Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons (Trafficking in Persons Protocol),” separated that heinous crime from it’s inciting incident  which is an individuals need to change their life, thus endangering them.

Therefore, please note that when I speak of illegal’s I speak about those brought into this country illegally that do not know what their lot will be, but assume it will be better than where they came from.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~Today’s Read~~~~~~~~

Resigned to the situation, Naomi tried to find something positive to think about, she saw that a baby grand piano held the place of prominence in the sparsely furnished room and smiled in spite of herself when memories of playing the piano for Abuela Sosa surfaced. She reconsidered her assessment of the place and added the word grand. When her consciousness flooded with memories of the many times she had played for the Sosas’ blind grandmother, she reminded herself, That was another time, another place. Abuela Sosa is no more. Images that had brought her comfort as she traveled the world with them flashed before her eyes. In an attempt to stop them, she reminded herself that the promises they had made they had broken. Now those bright hopes will only bring you pain. It is best you think about this situation since it seems worse than the one you just left.

“Come.” The old tía pulled her through the living and dining rooms while she searched her ring. When they crossed the kitchen’s threshold, she found it and unlocked the handcuffs. She eyed Naomi. “This was just a precaution!” She threw the handcuffs down on the battered kitchen table.

Naomi looked at the cold steel.

“Sit down!”

Naomi obeyed, felt her will disappear, and wondered if the old tía viewed her as a tool to mold to her demands.


Do you try to help others and end up hurting yourself?

Is this a habit, a life style, or do you get joy from living your life this way?

If you could find a way to change your behavior, would you, and why? If not, why not?

~~~~~~~~~~~Authors Comment~~~~~~~~~

Everything in life has a value and either a positive or negative emotion attached to it. Although our hard drive may have become programmed to do anything to get noticed because we are cogent we can retrain our responses thereby freeing ourselves of the need to feel better if we feel worse, or if we place others needs above ours.

However, our society seems to value selflessness. Therefore, the question one must ask and answer is who matters most? If you do, then your course is set. That is until you fall in love. For love has been known to be the great equalizer. And passionate love the great deflator if the object one loves does not respond in kind.

Contrary to popular opinion, to be self-centered does not necessarily mean that one is less likely to experience angst, or rejection. For the one who loves self might do so superficially to hide a deep loathing.

Caught between the proverbial ‘ying and yang’ of the id one might wish they could live in Limbo Land, and some do. Enter Human Trafficking and Naomi’s plight which needs to be understood within the larger issue of illegal immigrants who come from every place and look just like you and me! That’s right! Though they are suspect, they might not be the ones that are killing Americans at the boarder! Their not just Mexican, or Spanish. Their not coming here to wage war against America anymore than your family did when they first came here. There here because being there is horrid! So the next time someone looks at you esque, it just may be that their wondering if you’re here legally.

Now that you’ve walked a mile in Naomi’s footsteps’ you might understand her plight as we move on. And you might have taken a moment to think about what you would do if you were this frightened teenager.  

If you think I’m misguided in what I say, let me share that while withdrawing funds at my local bank my teller who had read Casa de Naomi: The House of Blessing, shared that years ago she was telling a coworker about the vacation she was going to take, and discovered that this blue-eyed, blond haired woman could not go on vacation because she was an illegal immigrant. The teller was amazed for this woman looked and sounded as if her family had been here for many years. However, because my teller was of Latin decent and her family spoke Spanish at home, she often noticed many cast curious glances her way.

Ask yourself, "What would I do, how would I feel if that happened to me?" When you know the answer to that question, you will be better equipped for whatever life brings your way.

Until next time, may all your days be blessed, and may you rest assured in Messiahs blessing!

To order your copy of Casa de Naomi: The House of Blessing, visit

Tomorrow Authors' Event

Meet the Authors’ Event! My friend Marlayne Grion and I will be selling and inscribing books at The Farmers Market at South Orange County Design Center, 3115 Harbor Blvd, Costa Mesa, CA 92626 Saturday, January 28, 2012 from 9-3, and hope to see you there!  

Can Running Away Help You Change Your Life? by Paula Rose Michelson

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Text~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

While Tía spoke about saving young girls—her niñas, she called them—from deportation, Naomi understood a little about what she had agreed to and her heartbeat slowed. Her thoughts drifted to the letter from her uncle and her plans to find him once she had arrived safely in America. She placed her free hand in her skirt pocket and felt the letter’s edge, worn rough from her family’s continual folding and unfolding of this breath of freedom from across the ocean. She could not remember a time before the letter from her tío for his description of the bright promise of America had given her family hope. Whenever life became bitter and difficult, her parents would pull it out and read it to the family. Then they would commit to each other, “Next year in America!” instead of the customary “Next year in Jerusalem!” as every Jew says at the end of the Passover meal. For, to them, America was the promised land. Naomi fingered the letter’s edge and silently promised, I will find you, mi tío. I will find you as soon I am able.

Tía continued to talk while she dragged Naomi through the vestibule. The girl stumbled, righted herself, and noticed the parlor on her left. When Tía stopped to put her mail on the sideboard, Naomi looked around. No one would ever suspect that a house so unkempt on the outside had such comfortable furnishings within. She wondered at the absurdity of her looking at the place and thinking as she had, rather than trying to find a way to flee, and reminded herself that although she was in America; nothing had changed.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Authors Observation~~~~~~~~~~~~

Today we see Naomi’s situation through her eyes, as she realizes the sad truth that nothing has changed. Whether this is really true or not, does not matter. For as we believe we are, and we continue in that belief until something within us changes thereby allowing us to own a new reality.

Friends, helpers, or even family members may try to assist with our changing perceptions, or help us reground ourselves. If you wonder why many chose to get involved, the reasons are as varied as the colors of the rainbow. However, it is sufficed to say that if the rainbow colors they speak of are theirs you might not end up living the life you ought.

The truth that I learned many years ago and continue to relearn when difficult situations occur is that no one can fix what we are going through. As much as they wish us well, they can, however, impede our learning what we need to so that we can move on.


Who can you go to that will love and not judge you?

Must others believe that your truth is true before you will feel valued?

What can you tell yourself that will allow you to own your own reality? 

Although I do not know how you will respond to the questions posted today, here is a Scripture that helped me on my way. I hope it will speak to your heart as they did mine.

When I read, Matthew 6:33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well, I discovered that there was someone I could rely on who had already given me what I needed.

Yes! God is Involved in the Details! By Paula Rose Michelson

As some of you might have noticed, on the 14th of this month I removed this blog from Face Books NetWorked Blogs, and the following day I deleted my Year of 5,000 Books blog as well. While on my Face Book page today, I noticed that the system showed that I write a blog. When I checked NetWorked Blogs I found that they must have reinstated this blog.

This is amazing!

Why, you might wonder, is this amazing?

Because although FB had told me that this Blog was smappy and dangerous, in hindsight, I found myself wondering if the issue was one of having two blogs posted there. Besides, I missed all of YOU! So hallelujah, Casa de Naomi Reflections is back!

I’ll be posting to this blog next week and look forward to seeing all of you then!  

If you haven’t joined me before, I post excerpts from Casa de Naomi: The House of Blessing Book 1, and post some reflective questions that you can answer or not, as you chose.

Interested in the idea, but want to know more before you buy the book? You can watch the trailer at: To watch the trailer, visit

Wondering Why? by Paula Rose Michelson

Wonder why the cluster of 81 people following this blog through NetWorked Blogs is missing? It's simply a matter of remaining true to first things first. Firstly, I felt called to write, and God gifted my work. Before the book this blog was named for was printed I decided to begin this blog as a means of connecting with readers and others that might become readers.

Since my first blog, "Year of 5,000 Books," was posted on Face Book, I felt this one should appear there as well. Almost from its inception, my "Casa de Naomi Reflections Blog" seemed to come under some sort of scrutiny. Last week I tried to link my new posting on this blog to Face Book. The system informed me that this blog was spammy and dangerous! I sent several inquires through the system to no avail.

Perhaps it was that nameless, faceless systems lack of response, or perhaps it was a bigger picture of what a blog could be and how limiting it is for someone no one had ever seen or met, or may not exist to label another's work that led me to pull the blog. I may never know for sure exactly what motivated me. What I do know is this, numbers or pictures of people following do not a following make anymore than dying ones hair red makes them a redhead.

You are the reason this blog exists! So please drop by often and invite your friends to check out the postings as well. And, if you feel that this blog needs your in put, please be sure to leave your comments or critiques.

Here We Are! But where is Naomi? by Paula Rose Michelson

Authors’ Question and Comment: Every wonder why you're not experiencing the life you thought you would? This is Naomi’s issue. In fact, that thought caused her to flee Spain. This same type of thinking places her in such peril that she takes a road few would choose if another choice were available.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Text~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

            “Here we are.” The old woman opened the latch on the weathered gate, which led to her casa, pulled Naomi in, and shut the gate firmly behind her. Naomi heard the latch close and knew she had given up much more than she had gained. She wished to be anywhere but where she was and shivered with apprehension while the woman dragged her up the path… and pulled her up the porch stairs. Once they were on the landing, the old woman opened her mailbox and retrieved her mail. Naomi sneaked a furtive glance at the place and realized the shutters and front door were as weathered as the gate. Aware that behind that foreboding door lay the unknown; she looked at the handcuff that encircled her wrist and grimaced.

            “Come.” Tía pulled Naomi to the door’s threshold. They stood under the porch light while she dug in her purse for her keys and muttered, “I know they are in here.” She found them, selected a key, and worked it into the lock. “What is your name?” She opened the door and motioned for the girl to enter. “Naomi, I … I thought you heard … that.”

            “No, I did not. I had only one thing on my mindI had to get you out of there before someone came in and questioned you.”

            “Oh! You … you … were afraid for me.”

            “Now let us understand each other. I have an obligation to help young women like you!” The old woman pulled the girl across the threshold and locked the door behind her. “I have done so before and will most likely do this again. Those I help work for me or for someone else in the community until their debt is paid. Then I help them find a job or a husband.”


Has someone planned your life for you?
Why did they think they had the right to do that?

Did you smiled and agree to everything they suggested, or struggle with the realization that you had to agree?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~From My Side of the Fence ~~~~~~~~~

For years I had to yield my will to my parents. That might not sound too difficult except both my Mom and Dad were linear thinkers, as was my brother. I had an artistic flare. Where they saw absolutes, I saw unlimited possibilities. Where they wanted me to walk as they did, I wanted to explore. And it being the 60’s when I graduated high school, I was certain that I was right because everything was changing. Yet, I never put myself in the tenuous situation that our heroine now faces. If I had I might have done as Naomi has for I like her had never read, Ephesians 2:10which says, For we are God’s handiwork, created… to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Now you might wonder what kind of good works Naomi, me, or even you could do. In fact you might even think I’m loopy because I am suggesting that no matter what we are facing if we chose to bless others, blessings multiply, and we are blessed.

Don’t believe me? Want to know why I know that what I’m saying is true? Visit and buy your copy of Casa de Naomi: The House of Blessing today!

If What You Wish and Pray for Came True, Then What? by Paula Rose Michelson

I  am certain that each of us has wished or prayed that a particularly difficult situation or issue would change or magically evaporate leaving no trace or memory of its existence. That is Naomi’s issue. And it is because she takes matters into her own hands that what you are about to read happens.

As before here are some thought questions you might want to reflect upon as you see what happens to our heroine.

What is the scariest thing that ever happened to you?

Where you alone?

Was the problem resolved?

 (Since you saw Tía rescue Naomi from immigration, I’ve moved to the scene on the bus.)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Text – Continued~~~~~~~~~~

When Naomi did not respond, her sponsor turned to pat her hand. Naomi glimpsed a manacle around Tía’s wrist and knew she must flee. She began to stand. The old woman felt her move, grabbed her hand in a vice-like grip, pulled her into her seat, and handcuffed their wrists together.

Naomi froze. Her heart beat so fast she feared she would pass out. She opened her mouth to scream. No one would do this to someone who is here legally. If you scream, you will end up back at immigration and you will be deported. Forcing herself to act calm, she closed her mouth and said nothing. When the lady sitting behind her asked her a question, she bit her lip, shook her head, and tried to look relaxed. Aware that she was trapped, a feeling of resignation washed over her as she upbraided herself for having mistaken the old woman for kindness itself.

She stared at her sponsor, spotted a Catholic church through the window behind the woman and was horrified. Spanish Harlem, she thought, I left Spain for religious freedom but have to hide here just as I did there. Fear of the religious community’s reprisals if they discovered her faith, coupled with the situation she now faced, caused her to flush scarlet. When she did she realized that the old tía could see her thoughts and feelings when she looked at her face.

Tía smiled, nodded at her, and cooed, “Now we will have lots of time to talk.”

Naomi glanced at her handcuffed wrist. “All right,” she said in an attempted show of bravery, which she feared fooled neither of them. “We will talk.” She grasped at her last shred of courage, lifted her chin, and squared her shoulders. “Then we will see about this!”

“Good.” Tía stood to get off the bus and dragged the girl along as she hid the handcuffs with her scarf. “It is a short walk from here to mi casa. Trust me. This will work out well for both of us.”

They left the bus stop, turned right at the first corner, walked a block, turned right again, and continued past three houses. Naomi’s eyes darted in all directions, frantic to find anyone who would help her. There was no one on the street.


If Naomi knew God personally, she might have remembered Psalm 33:20 were it says, “We wait in hope for the Lord; he is our help and our shield.” Or maybe she would have prayed the words of Psalm 17: 8, praying,  “Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings,” and they comforted her. However, having grown up in a place where her Bible and her very existence were forbidden, she did not know these words of comfort.

Perhaps that is your experience. On the other hand, you might have heard about this God but believe him dead, or worse, one who does not care. No matter what you think or why, whether you have ever known God or not, one thing is true, The Creator of the Universe cares for you.