Jan 30, 2008

The words .. they have escaped me

There has been so much going on here this week. Good things and some not so good things, but MANY things. I have been wanting to write it all down and share with the 3 of you who read my blog, but there is so much. I have not been able to gather my thoughts and have it all make sense in an entry, BUT HERE GOES!

God IS a healer
God loves me
Jesus died on the cross for me and YOU, he didn't have to, but He did
Even when I am at my lowest, I can always look UP and look to HIM
Even when I do not understand what is going on, God does and He knew before I did ..
God ALWAYS answers prayer. Yes, always. It may not be the way I want Him too, but He does
God answers are YES, NO and NOT YET
I am my husband's companion - no one else should have that position
I need to go to bed WAY earlier than I do
I need to stay in bed even when I wake up in the middle of the night
Even though I surround myself with praise music and Christian TV, I still need MY time with God
I need to pray more and listen for God's instruction
I need to say I love you more to those I truly care about
You can never say thank you enough
Write, NOT EMAIL more thank you notes and letters.
I should balance my checkbook better, thank God He is Jehovah Jireh, my provider
I should not ride on fumes, they do not last as long as you think
I need to decrease and let Him increase more in my life
The order for my home is God, husband, kids, THEN other things .. sometimes I get confused
I need to be a better friend
I need to stop comparing

These are all things I know and it is nothing new, but ..... I miss my parents, a man died at 45 this week, he left behind a wife and three young daughters, a friend's mom was rushed to emergency because she has too much fluid around her heart, a young girl was killed by her former boyfriend because he was jealous, someone close to me is in the process of losing her home, people in THIS country are hungry everyday, rice & beans and cornbread DO make a difference, another friend's dad was on death's door and in less than 72 hours, he is walking out of the hospital HEALED, Ethan made 4As and 2 Bs for the first semester! We paid off a credit card! I have a wonderful marriage, a fellow blogger has been dealing with a tumor and now she is praising God it is no longer there! On and on and on.

At every turn there were things to pray for and then things to praise Him for. I do not understand, but it is not for me to understand, God's word IS clear ..
Proverbs 3:5,6 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight (NIV)

Jan 28, 2008

Time to laugh .. at least I did ...

I got some exercise in UNEXPECTEDLY this morning.

To make a long story short, I took Ethan to school late today (we're all a little under the weather) He has to be there by 10:00 am or he will be counted absent. D had already left for work.

As we prepared to leave for school, I got locked out of the house AND got locked IN the garage, so I had to find a way out. I went out the door to the patio and had no choice but to ......... hold on .... don't laugh, ok, yes, laugh with me ... I had to ....SCALE THE FENCE!!!!!!! With a long blue jean skirt on and flip flops .. if you could have seen me .. I was even laughing the whole time saying Lord, Lord, Lord. Just trying to get my child to school. I am not a spring chicken!!

God's word came to mind .. although a little out of context, but nonetheless, Isaiah 40:31 "They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint."

I know I must have burned 1200 calories just now .. so I am off to get some BenGay (it is starting to hurt all over) and Baked Multigrain Tostitos.

Make it a great day!

Jan 23, 2008

Just an ordinary day ..

11:45 am
Nothing special going on around here today. It is COLD .. brrrr and we will have made a thousand cups of cocoa before the day is over to warm up. Austin has told me over and over .. mom, I need marshmallows in my cup please! DeClan has been yelling cacka (cracker) for the last hour and nothing I have pulled out the pantry that look like cackas to me seem to qualify as the cacka he is calling for.

D went to work at 6 this morning, so I got up to make him lunch (bless the lord for crock pots, I made his lunch last night at 11:30pm in the crock)I never quite got back to sleep and now of course I am tired. Probably will invest in a nap for an hour or two perhaps three. I cleaned out the drawers in the boys bathroom and threw almost everything away except the toothbrushes, toothpaste, brushes, combs, shampoo, conditioner and lotion. Isn't that what is supposed to be there anyway? Why they had so many "junk" happy meal toys in the bathroom, I'll never know.

Each morning has been a struggle getting Ethan up, fed and dressed for school, but I can't blame him not wanting to get out his bed or his footed pajamas. This morning was extra hard because it seemed colder than normal and we needed to leave 15 minutes early so we could turn in our library books and DVDs that were due at 11:59 last night. Everyone had to get up earlier because of my decisions. I should have had D drop them off when he went to church, but we just had to see one more episode of the Cosby Show. If I had let him do it, me and the boys would NOT have been trying to beat the library lady to the video drop off at 7:30 this morning. Sorry Ethan!

I guess after my nap I will get dinner started (it is my calling you know), meatloaf, sweet peas and mashed potatoes sound real good right now, but by then I may only have the strength to make baked fish and veggies in foil packets. (Such a contrast).

I have a many other things I could be doing, but it is just too cold. I am enjoying winter season in more ways than one and my list of things will continue to grow and I am doing what I can .... no ..... really I AM. This is such a contrast from last week, we went somewhere EVERYDAY and now we are paying for it. We didn't have to go many of those places we went ... but ... you know how it is. I was once told being a stay at home mom, sometimes means staying at home more than you go and this week by golly, WE WILL be still. Besides gas is almost 3.00 again.

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own (NIV) Matthew 6:34 ... is my verse for today ..

So as I pull the blanket a little further on the bed, I am going to rest, take care of me, concentrate on today and I will get to my list tomorrow or the next day instead.

Jan 18, 2008

Love the one you are with

Some of this is a repost from May 2007, but after what I heard today, (another Hollywood marriage or should I say "union" bit the dust after 2 weeks ... (what?) ... this entry deserves a second look AND I have entered a writing contest from Lysa TerKeurst @ Proverbs 31 ministries.

This is an old song, but I keep hearing this phrase in my head over and over again this week. Love the one you are with. Love the one you're with! On one side I have marriages literally falling apart around me and on the other side new marriages forming with people saying, "if it works okay and if it doesn't, that is okay too". Is it? Why do we do this to ourselves, don't we know Satan is in the wings waiting to set us up for attacks? He is already very busy and very crafty and does not need any help.

Why do people get married? Why did I get married?
I got married because I fell in love with my fantabulous husband "Fish". We met and married in the same year (with counseling and approval from parents and our Pastor). It was love at first sight, but God was front and center in this relationship and we kept asking, is this what we should do? Unbeknowst to both of us, He was writing letters to God, I was writing letters to God and all along we were looking out for one another. I am NOT saying everyone should meet and marry within 9 months, but I know without a shadow of a doubt, with tweleve years under our belts, that this was what we were supposed to do. We do not complete each other, that was already done BEFORE we were married, but we complement each other and we are about doing God's work TOGETHER!

Love is a feeling, but you need way more than lovely feelings when you are about to scream to the top of your lungs and mentally hit your loved one over the head! Love is a continual action. Love is not self serving .. if it was I would have been out of here a long time ago, BUT see that is what I am saying .. people give up at the first sign of trouble .. he puts the toilet paper up instead of down, he doesn't like Colgate (what do you mean, you can get that stuff for .25cents after coupons and a sale at Krogers .. sorry that is another story) .. but really the first sign of "differences" people are ready to head to Judge Mabalene .. no way, no way .... Why is it that when people get married, they RUNNNNNNN to the church, but when it is time for help and healing .. the last place they want to see is the church? You must think at every turn, what would Jesus do? I'm serious .. what would Jesus do when your spouse innocently says you might need to do some extra walking this week - - I (Natural) would say .. what? And who are you .. isn't that your second helping on ice cream?What happens when you are a spender and he is saver? You spank, he spoils? You cannot run away! Just as we have run to Jesus to bless the union, you have run back to Jesus as things are falling apart! The grass is NOT greener on the other side, I mean, really check it .. it could be some of that grass artifical grass I saw on TV last week) no really, check it .. when you leave the one you are with .. you are just jumping into another fire this time with more stuff to blow up the fire because this time you have some junk to put in the fire. DON'T DO IT! DON'T DO IT!

Pray and ask God for radical HELP! I am not saying I know what people are going through that are going through a breakup, seperation or whatever, but please STOP, Look, and Listen to what God is saying .. even if you do not like it. Be truthful and honest with yourself and God, He alreadyknows .. but wants to hear from you!

Marriage is a covenant agreement, especially with God's children. Do you realize that you have not just "gotten out" of your agreement with your other half, you HAVE betrayed God!
Stop, confess, cry out get some counseling, have someone hold you accountable and ask the Lord for HELP. God knows and He loves you!

Marriage Scriptures to meditate on
these are not for "a scripture a day to keep Satan away", meditate on them!

Hebrews 10:24 (New International Version)
And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.

I Corinthians 13:4-7 (New International Version)
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Proverbs 18:22 (New International Version)
He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the LORD.


Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy!

Ethan is home from school today .. AND let's just say .. I AM OUTNUMBERED!!!!!!!!!
oooo yeah, I am outnumbered, everyday, but you know me, I can take on a 2 1/2 and a 1 year old with one fail swoop if the noise level is above 1000 decibels ........ NAP TIME!!!!!!!! BUT TODAY, the 11 year old has no school, he is excited about sleeping in, walking around in his pajamas at 11:00am and as I type (I wish I had soundbites for you) they are racing, YES, racing through the office, kitchen and den with their Christmas cars and adorably LAUGHING. (Even DeClan). Ever seen Winnie the Pooh do a wheeeley? He is flying in the air right now!

Starbucks .. I'll have a TALL White Chocolate Mocha with extra whip .. pleeeease.

Jan 16, 2008

Whose report will you believe?

D and I spent the morning at Ethan's school yesterday. We met with ALL of his teachers, speech therapist, diagnostician, and principal because we got back Ethan's neuropsychological report just before Christmas and we wanted to give them the recommendations from his doctors. Whenever we have to meet with the school district staff it is NOT easy for me, because I know that they have to use "district lingo "and "educational labels" for Ethan that I do not approve of, but it is what it is and I use the "biblical lingo" God gave me. Thank you very much!

Ethan's doctors had already spent an hour with me last November going over his reports and their findings and what they wanted to see in his schoolwork and future "testing", so I made it clear at the meeting that I already knew what was going to go down. (I sound like a western fight) Anyway, the battle is the Lord's and not mine, so I asked God to reign over the meeting and guide me and D's words as we worked through the laundry list of items we needed to cover. God blessed us with a meeting where tempers did NOT flare and the adjustments we asked for and the doctor's recommended were accepted. BUT .. I still walked away from the meeting thinking what happened to the days when school was for learning things, 2 + 2 = 4, science, art, reading, field trips, etc. NOT teaching a standardized test? Why is it important to learn how to take a test. Yes, Ethan has some of the subjects I mentioned, but the focus is so much on the standardized test for schools these days. I wanted to ask and when the tests are finished, what will Ethan know? What will he remember? The tests or the that blue and yellow make " green"?

Ethan has made great strides since his surgery last July and even bigger strides since he started having seizures in 2003 and he is no dummy, but if you read the reports from the school and listen to those who work with him sometimes, it is as if he will NEVER do better or that we shouldn't have expectations or goals for him ... Philippians 1:6 says, He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." God did not create my son to just exist and die on the vine. He has a plan and a purpose for Ethan .. Jeremiah 29:11 says "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Just because Ethan has learning challenges, does not mean he cannot contribute to society, start his own business, marry the woman of his dreams and raise his children in the fear and admonition of the Lord.

This family believes the report of the Lord ... Psalm 127:3 Children are a gift from God. Psalm 123:14 "I will give thanks unto thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: Wonderful are thy works; And that my soul knoweth right well".

Jan 10, 2008

On behalf of someone else ...

I knew when we first heard the news that Ethan had a brain tumor that this season of our lives was bigger than us. Prayer began immediately and has not stopped. Ethan has been prayed for ALL OVER THE WORLD. I know that for a fact. When God healed Ethan, I also knew that God did not heal him just for us, but because He wanted others to know of His goodness and what He IS capable of doing. He used us as the vehicle for HIS message and I am glad He allowed us to be used. (I couldn't have said that just a few years ago).

So many people are going through "something" and many people are asking for God's healing power ... Through the blogworld, I've been introduced to one such person recently. My family has been praying and are asking you to pray for Joseph.

Jan 8, 2008

The devil .. he DON'T like prayers

This week my family has entered into a week of prayer. We pray all year long, but this week is focused prayer to begin the new year. Constant prayer. Together, individually, in the morning, at night and yes, even with Austin and DeClan. I have been told that when you really want to get serious with God and spend time with him, everything in the world will begin to happen and distract you. IT IS TRUE. Sunday night while having family prayer, Ethan got the giggles, Austin threw a pillow at DeClan and DeClan threw the pillow right back at him and started a quiet but noticeable pillow fight. Oh my! This began me and D's lesson in respect, patience and diligence. We scolded them and started again and finished without a peep from the oldest two. Notice, I said ... the oldest two. How very interesting because we do not have these issues throughout the year, perhaps because we pray in the morning with boys and at night before they go to bed, but it is the family times that get us into these "situations". We are trying to demonstrate a lifestyle or prayer for the boys and show them that we can't make it without God. We must depend on Him and Him alone. So, when the devil sends his "distractions", you must take your eyes off of "whatever"that may be and keep your eyes on Jesus during your prayertime and for your life!
Philippians 3:14 - - I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

Please tell me we are not the only ones this happens to.

Jan 3, 2008

He was and is faithful to me!

I can hear blogger saying Jai, you need to post an entry, you need to post an entry. I actually started two entries three days ago .. but they never made it to "publish". The Christmas and New Year's seasons have me WWWOOOORRRRRRNNNNNNNNN out! I am so shocked that I am THIS tired. We actually had a great season, but it all came and went way to fast. It seems like we just got back from Kentucky celebrating Ethan's birthday, no it seems like we just finished praising God for Ethan's healing, no ... it seems like we just got the news that Ethan would absolutely have to have his surgery .. no it seems like the year just began .. oh, I know it has, but I mean 2007. My daddy used to say .. take it all in .. take it all in .. savor each day, because when you get older, get married, have kids ... it all goes by way to fast .. and yes, I do agree daddy .. Ethan turned 11 last year and yet he is STILL my baby, I remember his first few years on this earth sooo fondly. Austin had has to grow up fast, because before we knew it, DeClan made his appearance and yet, I can envision my first wedding day like it too was just yesterday. (in another entry, I will explain what that means).

2007 flew by. When I was told Ethan would have to have his surgery last year, I cried, screamed, even called my Pastor and screamed some more. Then I calmed down, my sister prayed HARD over me and I began to think we would NEVER make it out of the month of July. Once they gave us the date, I couldn't see past July 13th, Friday, July 13th. No, I am not superstitious, but come on .. you gotta see the irony, if can use that word, in all this. God is omniscient, an all KNOWING God. He KNEW exactly when Ethan would have his surgery when this all began in 2003. God knew even BEFORE then, but you see what I mean. Now here we are in the few few days of 2008 and I pray for a closer walk with God without all the drama. Oh, I know when you pray and ask for something .. watch out, God heard you .. and you may have your answers before you know it and in a way you would have never foreseen. That's what I like and love about God. His ways are not my ways .. thank God .. because if they were .. I don't think my life would be as rich and as interesting (I am sooo boring)as it is. Still, I pray for closeness without a lot of drama .. but whatever my Lord sees fit, is fine with me, because He is NOT very far. He is right here. My family enters into prayer and fasting the first full week of every January and each year we have praises and prayer requests during that time. One of our prayers for 2006 and 2007 was to know HIM .. to know the Father, up close and personal and this is what our God revealed to us last year.

1) Jeremiah 29:11 - For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. (We have LAID on this scripture)

2) In early January, we were told that DeClan had a hole in his heart and he would have to see a cardiologist. He was 6 weeks old. (He is VERY WELL TODAY)

3) In late January, we were told that our insurance was not going to cover the cost of DeClan's delivery (hospital OR pediatrician's bill) .. they would only pay for my portion. (huh?, we lost that battle and now have another bill to pay) My father owns the cattle on a thousand hills

4) February ... Ethan makes it ONE YEAR without any seizures! Hallelujah!

5)March and April are all quiet on the homefront - PEACE ..... BE STILL

6) May - hit with the news that Ethan's tumor is now growing more and he WILL have to have surgery (Thank God for His people that He placed in our lives .. I cannot pray, I have no words.)

7) June - still no seizures, but preparation for the surgery .. I am numb, scared and do not want to do this, BUT we get confirmation from the Lord about what we are about to do! (Help Lord, Help)

8) July - the surgery .. oh, the surgery ... God is sooo good!

9) August - Ethan is doing so well, he starts school on time! (Restoration, Joel 2:25 --- And I will restore to you the years that the locust hath eaten, the cankerworm, and the caterpiller, and the palmerworm, my great army which I sent among you.)

10) September - Ethan is still doing well and gets 5 As and 1 B his first 6 weeks of school. He is doing so well that I am able to take a part time job to help "D" get some money in here (these boys can eat) Praise Him, Praise Him!!! (yelling, Praise Him)

11) October - Ethan is like a sponge, DeClan starts walking and things look good. We're start paying down debt (Wooowhoo!)

12) November - I loose my part time job (a lesson in obedience to God (post later). A week later, the water heater needs repairs (ahhh, no, we need a NEW water heater), the van needs tires before we leave for Kentucky, Ethan's grades drop, the washer and the toilet starts leaking ... BUT, it's Ethan's and DeClan birthday and we are gonna celebrate AND we ARE going to eat in KY, I mean see GranGran! (Major valley! Major valley! .. but what can you do, but trust God! Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding .. in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.

13) December - Most of the above are repaired, replaced or on a list to soon be taken care of) Jehovah Jireh .. Darrell and I celebrated 12 years of marriage and we celebrated the birth of Jesus and the end of another year. Celebrate Jesus, celebrate!

So, I have written all of this to say, NOTHING happens without God's knowledge, will you trust Him with everything you have? In everything you do? You say? In the plenty AND in the lean? In the good and bad? You just gotta do it! In the end, He will leave with you with such a rich history and legacy and relationship with Him. He will NEVER leave you or forsake you and has His hand there for you too hold.

My prayer in 2008 is no matter what comes and goes, I WILL hold on to God's unchanging hand.