Marathon Days.

There really is no other way to put it.  My days feel like I am running a marathon…with my sweet little bed welcoming me at night.

Things I am thankful for:

I LOVE my Emma.  Her two-toothed grin and sparkling blue eyes light up with joy.  Her giggles bring unending joy.  She brings peace to my days…and love always.  I love seeing her delight and distaste in different foods…the joy of learning her sweet little personality.

I am thankful for Hannah’s bone to HEAL completely!!!  This is a huge miracle for me to grasp hold of today and PRAISE Him for:  Our GREAT Healer!!

I am thankful for the obedient spirit I see in Lewis…growing each day.  I am thankful for all that he is learning with his friends right now…learning to love, learning to overlook offenses, learning about God’s love over him always.

I am thankful that spring is coming SOON.  We had a snow last night, and as it melts, I wonder if it is the last one.

I am thankful that my body is able to lose the rest of this pregnancy weight…I really did wonder if it would all come off this time…I am thankful for the time to work out and the calories nursing burns!  I always gain much more than the recommended amount.

I am thankful that I am loved, cherished, accepted, and redeemed…bought with a price by Him.

I am thankful for God healing our colds.

I am reminded this week that God is FOR me and not against me.  Isn’t it so easy to confuse God with life?  It feels like I am battling so much right now…difficult attitudes, regression in behavior…I want to feel disgruntled…but I know that God is on my side.  He is working with me.  He cares more about all of this than I do.  I know the remedy for a disgruntled attitude is a thankful heart.

Lately, it seems we’ve had a bunch of setbacks…potty training, behavior.  Hannah was dry even at night just two weeks ago…and now we are back to “sweet treats” to get her to go on the potty.  I have found lots of “surprises” the past 2 weeks…after asking her to go potty…she runs and hides…giggles and goes. My little 3 is such a challenge…daily…for me.  It feels like regression some days…and others, I succumb to the “terrible 3” explanation.  She has dropped her naps entirely the past 2 weeks…despite quite an effort to maintain them.  She feels so deeply…and has opinions about everything.  She doesn’t hold back how she truly feels.  She is so determined!  She has a great memory.  She really is so smart, she surprises me daily by what she knows, remembers, and can do.  She is SO independent.  I am wondering how all of these qualities will be used someday…in ways that I know God will use to bless others.

We’re working hard on obedience right now.  I am so passionate about their hearts…I know this is a gift, but it does mean that my heart is burdened right now…I keep taking those burdens right back to the Lord.  I love them…even if I don’t like the sin.  He is able to handle all of it.  I must press on.

I am SECURE in HIM right now…not the blessings God has given me…He giveth and He taketh away…my security, my confidence is in Him.  I am SURE of Him.

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So much provision, so many blessings :-)

I haven’t written in some time!  The kids have been sick the past two weeks, and Lewis is going into his 3rd week of sickness now…all with different sicknesses.  My heart aches when my children are sick.  It really breaks.  After two weeks of pretty intense sicknesses, several trips to the doctor, and continued, new symptoms, tears flowed from my eyes.  I was so tired of them throwing up!  Each time they leaned over the toilet/bucket, tears flooded my eyes.  I really don’t like seeing my children in pain….

Through all of this, we’ve learned that Lewis has an allergy to penicillin.  There was a huge reaction, and the doctor and nurse were very surprised to see his huge splotches of rashes, some huge and some little…all over his body.  There literally wasn’t a spot not covered in a rash.  My little champ said he wondered if it would be the biggest, baddest rash they’d ever seen 🙂  God gave me a spirit of strength through it all, despite moments of sorrow for my littles…but we have mostly overcome our sicknesses now 🙂  We are praising God for His continual healing.  I reminded Lewis of what it would be like if our sicknesses or injuries never healed…Brian said, it would be sort of like leprosy.  Later that day, Lewis’ school work had stories of leprosy in them, bringing the picture to us in full circle, of what it would be like without Jehovah Raphne’s continual healing.  Our hearts were full of thanksgiving.

My morning sickness still lingers, knocking me out completely on some days…I am so thankful those days always seem to correspond with Brian having a bit of time here and there to take the kids out to play.  God truly provides in every way.  The Lord is giving me a strength of mind through being so frequently sick and tired and a contentment with whatever I am able to do that day.  I am headed into my 6th month of pregnancy now, so I am truly hoping this sickness will fade away soon  However, in the meantime, God is teaching me to fix my eyes on Him through my weakness and turning to Him in FAITH and Hope and as my ever-present help.  He gave me a beautiful devotion last night as I lie sick, to cling to His “golden strand of Hope,” as well as other devotions and experiences to teach me my value to Him even in unproductively, and encouraging me that my anguish shall soon be forgotten when this precious little gift is in our hands 🙂

He’s encouraged me also from the struggle that this move here was for me, that with much failure comes a huge growth spurt.  I have felt Him working deeply in my heart…and I can sense Him bringing about a more mature faith in me…this brings me much joy knowing this truth and trusting in it.  He has to bring the sin up to the surface for me to see it and give it to Him to work to remove it from my life.  My part is resisting and relying upon Him.  He does the impossible part 🙂

He is giving me little bits of ministry outside of the home…which have been most precious to me.  I am becoming content with however ‘much’ or ‘little’ He gives me for each season, knowing that there is no way to measure the eternal impact of each ministry He gives me…nothing is too little.  Relationships are being built, most carefully, most slowly, and this is also so precious to me.

In parenting, He has opened our eyes to something both in us and our littles that needs to be slowly refined and changed more to His character.  It was something that was beginning to bother me in the children, but that I didn’t quite see yet in us.  But, we talked and we both saw it and chuckled a bit….and set about earnestly to ask the Lord to change us in this way.  In short, we can be a bit needy at times 🙂  And the Lord is giving our family more peace and patience and self-control 🙂

The Lord has given us incredible blessings to rejoice over!!!

-We have an incredible babysitter here who also works in the childcare room during PWOC, who LOVES our children and whom they also love.  She is giving Brian and I precious time together, given all the nights and days he spends studying.  These date nights have been some of the best nights we’ve ever had together 🙂

-The Lord is giving Lewis a beautiful heart of prayer!  We usually pray before dinner together and in the morning and night when we can, and, most of the time, the kids enjoy singing their prayer, especially at dinner 🙂  But, lately, Lewis has been interested in praying silently to the Lord and why we do that.  I told him it was so that what we say can be heard and treasured by Him and Him alone.  It is just meant for Him.  Lewis really liked this idea and has been praying a lot on his own…some quietly and some aloud, but his prayers are SO earnest and heartfelt….so incredibly touching and beautiful to me.  Tears fill my eyes as he turns to me and says, “I said my prayers mommy, but only for God to hear…”  🙂  I tell him that I know that God loves hearing what he has to say just for Him.

-My sweet husband has a wonderful group of Christian men here (close by!) with which to have fellowship and accountability.  His heart for God’s Word is beautiful, his desire to lead our family, and his desire for Christian fellowship are filling my heart with joy.  I am so thankful for the community that the Lord has placed us in here, with similar minds and hearts for the Lord…and that Brian has much more time to spend in fellowship than he did at our last assignment being in the field, half the time and working so hard, and the time before that being in Command and far from our place of fellowship.  This is a precious jewel for me to see and rejoice in with my dear husband, a beautiful answer to much prayer beginning to powerfully unfold.

-Hannah and I have been having a week of beautiful mother-daughter bonding.  We’ve had a rough few weeks with her sick…and this past week she has been stuck to my side, with an obedient heart, desiring to please and love so sweetly.  Her voice is so soft and precious.  Her cuddles are a priceless gift.  Our commissary trips are so much fun now, as we sing from aisle to aisle and talk together about the things we want to purchase 🙂  It seems more than a toddler-mommy relationship…God is giving me a glimpse of a beautiful mother-daughter relationship blossoming and I am so encouraged and filled up with Hope and Delight!

God is so faithful!!! There are so many more blessings, as I counted them in my head today, I could’t even keep track of them…they are so continual and so wonderful…I am only able to remember the most precious ones to us of recent.  We are so thankful!!!

 

Healing Rain…

It always amazes me how many times the Lord heals us…Brian woke up last night in the middle of the night with flu symptoms…he was aching, with a fever, and felt nausious and terrible.  I began to pray.  Then I fell asleep…and then the Lord woke me again at 5:30am…and I knew it was to pray again.  Buddy woke up around 7…and I asked him to pray with me for daddy.  Buddy, our little prayer warrior for healing…didn’t want to pray.  He wanted to pray later…and didn’t think God liked his short prayers.  I told him it was important to pray now and not later because we wanted God to hear our prayers now and begin healing daddy right away 🙂  And then I told him how much Jesus loved hearing his prayers, no matter how he says them..no matter how short.  So, his prayers for healing were rejuvenated.  He prayed and God answered.  Brian is already feeling better not even 24 hours later.

Buddy asked me about healing today…why daddy didn’t feel better right as we were praying…why sometimes it takes time.  I told him that God has a sort of big cup in His hands…and sometimes, when we pray, the prayer is answered with healing right away, and othertimes, the prayer cup has to be full for it to tip over and bring forth healing.  It is something hard to understand.  His eyes lit up though and it made him excited to fill that prayer cup up with prayers for daddy!

It got me thinking.  It got me praying.  Prayers for healing have been on my mind.  We have a prayer meeting each week here at our home…and we send lots of prayers up to the Lord, but it has been difficult to measure the answers to those prayers.  We often don’t get to see the answered prayers.  I am longing for the tangible answers to prayer right now….for our prayer group’s faith to be lifted up…to help our faith to be rejuvenated.  We don’t need the miracles to believe…but we long to see the power in intercessory prayer…and that is when it HIT me.

I began to pray to the Lord to ask him about intercessory prayer and what kind of prayers are pleasing to Him…for a friend oceans away praying over people who are in need of so much healing and love and life….and also for our prayer group…and lately, Brian.  I have seen God heal instantaneously before.  I have seen his miracles.  I know there is power in prayer.  And that word kept echoing in my mind…POWER.  I gave it to God and asked for a Scripture to focus on.  And then I went to church yesterday and the songs were about the Power of the Lord…and His Authority over Everything.  God is putting it on the forefront of my mind.  And then this Scripture popped out at me at the bottom of a friend’s e-mail:

2 Peter 1:3  “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.”

God’s POWER has given us everything we need for LIFE.  He has power to rebuke disease, to Heal, to break strongholds, to fulfill all His promises.  His power is what we pray by and believe on.  His great and glorious power and might.

And then we get to watch Him display His glory.  I’m looking forward to praying His power in intercessory prayer.  I ‘m looking forward to seeing His merciful answers to our pleas for our brothers and sisters and the unsaved.

Beautiful Healing

I am always amazed at the Lord as the Great Healer.  He heals so often, with so much grace, and so many times unbeknownst to us.  The other night, as we went on a family trip and were staying in a hotel…Hannah spontaneously started to get a fever at night and her voice went raspy, then she started coughing….and soon struggled to breath.  I was so thankful to have my calm, steady husband at my side, counseling me.  I was ready to fly to the ER.  We prayed…and waited just a bit…her breathing calmed…the Lord gave us a peace…and I kept her by my side the whole night.  The whole next day, she did so well…the whole trip back, she was amazing!  We saw that God gave this to us as a gift…when we got home, the next morning, she got worse again (minus the breathing problems).  It showed me just how wonderful a gift that was to us while we were on our trip.  Most of today she has been sleeping, her body catching up on rest and allowing itself to heal.  God has such incredible timing.  His gifts are so continuous and great, so many of which we would miss if we are not very still and quiet.

My body is tired…it has been several days since I have had a good rest…but don’t you love how God gives strength when we aren’t able to sleep and promise of sleep when we need it most?  I am resting in that.  He has proven it to me over and over.  He will renew my strength and give me rest in Him today.

Hannah update!!!

Another Hannah update 🙂

We had to go see Hannah’s sweet pediatrician to update her EFMP before we move in DEC and we received GREAT news!!!!  Hannah no longer needs to be in the EFMP program!  She is all caught up and doing FANTASTIC!!!  The braces are helping to fix her ankles and everything else has caught up to her age now.  What a sweet gift from the Lord.  He told me to trust Him all along the way…no matter what…and the sweet, sweet, glory of everything is all HIS.  Thank-you Jesus for an A ok report from her doctor.  That has been a journey for us with both kids and it is SO good when we have finally received that report with both our children.  Amen!

Tomorrow, I travel a 4 hour round trip to see how her ankles are doing with those braces!  One step at a time and He is taking care of every detail.