Romans 12:2

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

Friday, February 17, 2012

All Things Work Together for Good

Romans 8:28

New International Version (NIV)
 28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[a] have been called according to his purpose.

 In the midst of a lot of good and difficult changes and hardships, that Lashae and Chaney are going through in their young married life....broken down truck, financial hard times, a big LONG move (further from me, ugh.), a change of job, pregnancy (hormones), and all that comes with being newly weds, pregnant, and away from everything familiar...God gives GOOD GOOD gifts.

 And God is so good that He works some good things into some difficult situations.  The only thing Charlie and I can spare right now to help anyone   is a truck and a guess what Chaney and Lashae happen to need for just a while...a truck and a person. 

 The good news is, I get to see my girl!!!!  Yep....You heard right, Lashae is flew in Wednesday night!!!  She will hang with us for a few days and then she will take a truck and her sister and they will head to Montana to get ready for a big move.  I'm so excited and amazed at how the Lord can turn all things to GOOD!  

I would have never wished their truck to break down and cost them a lot of money, but only God can bring a gift out of that, and the gift is, that me and Lashae have been aching ACHING to see each other, I miss her so bad, and I just need to lay eyes on her, as it so "happens", out of their hardship, we get to see each other, and spend some time together.

I just want to add;  I'm so proud of these young married kids of mine.  They are doing so well.  They love each other a ton, and they love the Lord and seek HIM in every single decision they make.  So whenever I get on my high horse and start worrying about stupid stuff, I am ever so gently reminded(and sometimes less gently..Robert) that they hear from the Lord, they seek Him daily, and Chaney is a man of his house and a man of I'm trying to crawl off my high horse and just remember this and be thankful, so thankful!

PS...I just have to add something I think is so's just a glimpse of how Dads are always Dads, and their little girls are always their Princesses that they will literally take off their give only "the best" to their girls.  

When I told Charlie that Lashae and Chaney needed a truck for a bit, and I had offered them the Ford, which is in great shape, runs perfect, not one problem with it, but it is older than his, and the tires are not as good, Charlie said, "NO WAY", I was like, "WHAT???"  He said, "She will take MY TRUCK, it has better tires and it's just better, and she needs my truck." this blessed my heart.

Then I was talking to my dad, Lashae's Papa, and he heard of the situation and he said, "Ok, how can I help, I want to do something."  I had to laugh, because he already did without knowing it at the time, he gave Charlie the really good snow tires that are on Charlie's truck that he is lending to Lashae.  I love how everyone got to be a part of it without knowing what was going to be needed. 

 If our dad's on this earth care so much about our every need and are willing to give only their best...How much more does our Father in heaven give?
He gave His only Son to die for us so we may have eternal life with Him and He will gives us everything we need on this earth, and PERFECT HEAVEN  for the rest of ETERNITY once we leave this earth...Oh, there are some good Fathers on this earth, but our Heavenly Father is Perfect and gave it all once and for all!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The Valentine Proposal

Everyone is posting their Valentines love, I couldn't resist!!! 

 Today, 23 years ago my man asked me to marry him.  It was NOT a story that we really share with anyone very often,( so I thought I would just blog it and get that exposed too. haha),  it was not romantic and it is NOT recommended, but it is our story and I love it because it is unique to us and I love "US".   
I would NOT change one thing...even the proposal :)....because it was from my man and I love him more now than ever before, and I loved him to the moon and back even then.  
Here's the Story:

We were having a Valentine"s dinner alone, that I had made for him.
The whole dinner,  I thought he was breaking up with me because he was soooo quiet and deep in thought, but, instead of breaking up with me, when he finally spoke, he proposed!
I had a very hard time shifting gears from tears of fear to tears of joy, so I sat STUNNED at what had just happened, but of course I said YES!

  I was a Senior in high school, and we did not tell a single soul until I graduated. 
Once I graduated he asked my dad and gave me a very special ring that has been passed down for 4 generations.  When he gave it to me, it was also passed around the table to everyone else to see before I got to look at it.
 Again, we are not very romantic but we are very UNIQUE, and that just works best for "us".

It felt odd, to go to school and home and I knew in my heart I had accepted a marriage proposal, but there was no ring and no congratulations, just a big awkward secret.
  I felt excited and guilty, excited about my future, guilty about my secret.

Now we laugh about all that, it is a story that will be told many times in the years to come, and probably get better and better with each telling, if you know what I mean.

 ***  Warning***** 
 My kids better NEVER do anything like this.  

Happy Valentines to my Sweetheart!!! 
 We have been married 22 years and I would NOT trade one day of it for anything else. 
 It is fun, and crazy, and hard, and wonderful and unique. 

Thanks Mom and Dad for not killing me and always being so supportive of me and Charlie and our "unique" ways.
  And Dad  thanks for saying yes, and not killing Charlie. 
 You both took it so much better than I would have.


Monday, February 6, 2012


I just have to testify to God's grace and goodness today.

This is a story of what God did for "this girl" that  just blesses me to my very bones.

I went to the mail today, Feb. 4...usually the chore that raises my blood pressure the's just never good news these days you know what I'm sayin.

So today...I went...and guess what guess what....I have AGAIN filled out REAMS of paperwork for St. Charles Hospital to get my bills with having Maezie reduced...I did that with Charlie's hand injury 2 years ago, and they reduced it by 25%...a huge help.  That was a couple thousand dollars straight off the portion of the bill that I owed after insurance.

So, I filled out this paperwork, and sent it in...and a gal from their finance office called a few days later and said they only had  part of  the packet.  WAIT. WHAT???  The lady looked high and low and said she only had parts of things, that something happened when they scanned it in, and they were missing most of it...ugh...I went to my room and hid under my covers...LITERALLY...I could not face more paperwork to PROVE how financially wrecked we are,  it is degrading, and sickening and frustrating and THE whole time, I feel like vomiting. It just has a way of making me feel like a big fat loser, and you can tell me all day long, that many people are struggling and it's just nice that I can apply for financial help and all that junk, but it still just FEELS rotten. 
 I prayed under those covers for them to find the paperwork or for me to have the energy to do it all AGAIN!!

So, I crawled out from under the covers and began gathering the information I needed to once again take copies and send...I was headed to town to copy it and I got a call on my cell, and the lady from the finance office found it ALL.  She said she had everything she needed and she was sorry. 

A few days after that phone call....I got one more thing in the mail from them questioning  the fluctuation in our income, I explained we were self employed, and it was always different, but it is all reflected in the TAXES that I sent them in the big hefty packet.

TODAY, YES TODAY...I went to the mailbox and got a letter  from the hospital that states, they cancelled all our debt with them, ALL OF IT....ALL OF IT...EVEN THE BILLS FROM CHARLIE'S HAND SURGERY, and REECE'S 2 HOSPITAL BILLS FROM WHEN HE HAD PNEUMONIA  A YEAR AND A HALF AGO, AND ME AND  MAEZIE'S BILL FROM WHEN I HAD HER!!!  OVER 8,000 DOLLARS WORTH..CANCELLED!!!! 

You see even though we have insurance we have a very high deductible.

 I had not even thought they were considering the old hospital bills. 

Sunday, February 5, 2012

One Year Ago..Feb. 5-8

Feb. 5 - One year ago today......I met my daughter Esther.  It was a beautiful day, one I will never forget.  It was much the same feeling as when I gave birth to my other children.  It was hard and wonderful and a relief , there were tears of every kind all at the same time.  I was unsure of many things at that moment, but very sure of the joy, and the love that I felt, and the presence of God creating something beautiful, and allowing me to be a part of it.  I am grateful beyond words to Him for allowing me to be a mom to EVERYONE of my children.  
Such a  gift straight from God Himself.

Feb. 6 - One year ago today.....We went to church with the Redeemer House kids, and my sister and her team of women, that just happened to be in Uganda at the same time (that still just blows my mind how the Lord worked the timing out on that extra bonus), and then we loaded up in a van, with 11 other people and headed on a 7 hour journey to go to our court date for adopting Esther.  That 7 hours was such a rich time; as I spent those hours getting to know my daughter.  It was also exhausting, the Uganda roads are crazy, just crazy, and being pregnant and in the back of a van in 85 degree weather with many other people and no air conditioning was very challenging physically for this mama.
  I thought my bladder or my brain or stomach might explode at any time.  But God had compassion on me and everyone else in the van, and none of the above happened.  

Feb. 7 - One year ago today, we arrived at the courthouse to see the judge at our appointed time.  Feb. 7 was EXACTLY 9 months to the day after Charlie and Lashae had met Esther.  Isn't that amazing how the Lord does those fun things. 
 We were used to waiting 9 months for our kids.  :)
  We sat at the courthouse for 3 hours to only find out the judge would not be hearing any cases that day.  We were so disappointed and scared, as we had no guarantee of WHEN she may hear our case.  We went back to the motel, and spent some good time with Esther; we showed her tons of pictures of her siblings on the computer and she got to know each of them by name.  That was fun, and she still talks about that day.  After showing her a bunch of pictures we all laid down and took a little family nap together.  That was also something she remembers so vividly.  

Feb. 8 - We got up the next morning, put on the same clothes as the day before, our "court clothes", and headed back to court in faith that the judge would hear our case.  We had nothing to do but pray and sit and wait.  We waited another 3 hours and began to get very worried that this would be a repeat of the day before.  Then a man came out and announced that the judge would hear the adoption cases ONLY!!  That meant us, and one other family that had traveled up with us.  We went into the judges chambers and went through a VERY intense time of questions and was told that we would get a ruling Feb. 16.  
This was us after our day in court.  These are our lawyers and friends standing with us. 

There are so many details that I don't have the time to type out, but the word that the Lord just kept impressing on my heart the entire trip was PERSEVERANCE.  When I would open my Bible to read before we went to court on that second morning I read the scripture: 

2 Peter 1:5-7

New King James Version (NKJV)

Fruitful Growth in the Faith

But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love.

The only thing we could do to persevere was persevere in our waiting, and SHOW UP.  There was not one thing that was in our control, but just HANG IN THERE.  We were not to give up or get discouraged, but persevere in our faith that the Lord would go before us and handle the situation.    I am in awe of how the Lord comes through in such beautiful way.  He always teaches us along the way, and why should we be surprised , He is the Father, He is never going to miss an opportunity to teach His children more about faith, more about love, more about Him.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

One Year Ago - Feb 2nd

One year ago today...Feb 2, I woke up knowing I had a very big day ahead of me.  I started out with time with the Lord. Why, because I knew I would not be able to handle the day for one minute on my own.  I got ready headed out for a quick stop by our Women's Bible Study to update my friends on our plans.  I told them we were headed out that night for Africa.  I could only stop by because I had been asked by a precious lady if I would come at speak at her Wednesday Bible Study, which consists of some of the most dynamic senior citizens I have ever met.  I did not know them, I had never spoke to a group before, but I felt that the Lord was doing so much for us and with our lives that I had to "testify" and give testimony any time I had the opportunity.  

When I stopped by to update the ladies at our Bible study I could barely speak and I personally knew every single one of them.  I got a bubble in my throat the size of a bull frog and bawled like a baby.  They prayed for me to have strength and words as I went and spoke to the group I had been invited to.  As usual, God blessed my socks off!!!  I went to bless the people and "testify" of God's goodness, and He gave me the words and the strength, and He even got rid of the giant bull frog that I thought was lodged in my throat permanently.  They listened, and they loved on me with prayers, and encouragement, and financial support.  Oh I can't tell you how humbling and beautiful it was.  I went to be a blessing and as usual it turned on me and I WAS BLESSED.  I got in my car and called Charlie and bawled my eyes out.  It was a joyful, humbling, thankful bawling!! 

I came home and did some crucial paperwork for the adoption, our trailer raffle, and our business.  I gave Lashae orders that went something like this;  "Honey, you are in charge of EVERYTHING...the kids, the animals, the raffle, the house, and I have not one second to show you a thing or help you get ready, you are up, it is up to you."  As usual the Lord just took over and gave her everything she needed, the patience, the understanding, the knowledge, the energy, the desire.  She took it all on with such a beautiful attitude.  They were blessed while we were gone with so much food and help from friends they were wishing I would be gone longer.  :)

The Lord also provided the perfect job for Charlie. We are self employed and you can't just leave the job you are hired to do, if you aren't there, you aren't paid and the job is not getting done.  There is no sick time, no vacation, no benefits like that.  But, he was working for a neighbor that was so supportive of our adoption, and he said no problem, he would just see Charlie when we got back.  What a blessing!!!

That night we went to prayer meeting for just a few minutes and they prayed for us, for everything we needed would be supplied at home and in Africa while we were gone.  We came home at about 8pm, we packed and headed to the airport.  I'm telling you without all that prayer I could not have done any of that, but the Lord went before us every second of every minute of the day and provided what we needed to get out of town.  The finances, the time, the energy, the peace we needed to keep moving forward.  We got to the cargo department and picked up the bags that didn't make it from my sister's trip (and there is a long story to go with this, but I will leave it out for now), and headed to bed for about a 4 hr. sleep.

As I'm reflecting on all that the Lord has done day by day right now, I began thinking of the story of the 10 lepers.  The thing that strikes me about this is that they were willing to do anything to be healed and have a touch from the Lord.  They were crying out to Him, and he told them to "go" and show themselves to the priest.  They were totally and quickly obedient because they wanted something from Jesus.  They were healed on the way, and only ONE came back to give Him praise and thank Him.  I could not take a step without talking to the Lord last year at this time, I needed Him to do SO much for me, that I walked closely to Him, asking Him for help constantly.  I want to be the leper that comes back and gives Him praise and is thankful.  I want to be like the one that did not forget who healed him. 
 It makes me wonder...we always ask the question as to why God allows hard times, or waiting,... could it be, that during those times we are desperate for His touch, His provision, and healing, and we are close to Him and seeking Him, and then He does what we ask and we don't return.  We may say thank you as we are running off, but do we come back and fall at His feet and give Him praise.  Only 1 in 10 in the leper story did.  Ouch.  I want to remember that closeness with God that I had when I could not move one step without Him!  I want to fall at His feet and thank Him every day.

Luke 17:11-19

English Standard Version (ESV)
Jesus Cleanses Ten Lepers
 11 On the way to Jerusalem he was passing along between Samaria and Galilee. 12 And as he entered a village, he was met by ten lepers,[a] who stood at a distance 13 and lifted up their voices, saying, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us.” 14When he saw them he said to them, “Go and show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went they were cleansed. 15 Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back,praising God with a loud voice; 16 and he fell on his face at Jesus' feet, giving him thanks. Now he was a Samaritan. 17Then Jesus answered, “Were not ten cleansed? Where are the nine? 18 Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?” 19 And he said to him, “Rise and go your way; your faith has made you well.”[b]

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Feb. 1st- One Year Ago

One year ago today....Feb 1st.  I told Charlie very early in the morning that I was pregnant.  His response:  he just walked off, I asked where he was going....he said he had to pray! 
 Well, that is not a fairytale response, but it was a good response.
  I think when we are thrown a curve ball, good or bad, rain or shine, at all times, in response to ALL news, we should pray. 
 Then we proceeded with our day, he headed off to work I went about my day.  When I got to the computer I had a couple of URGENT e-mails from our Uganda lawyer.  She was desperate to get ahold of us because we got a court only problem is we had to leave THE NEXT DAY!!!  I called Charlie with the second news of the day. 
 His response:  get the tickets, let's just do it!!  We knew the court day would be sometime soon, we were praying for that, but you usually have a couple of weeks notice. Not us, not this time.
 God LOVES to surprise us with gifts and blessings and He was having a ball with us that particular day.
 I remember being completely elated and overwhelmed!
 So we bought our tickets and figured out that my sister who was leading a team of women on a mission in Uganda, had a luggage disaster!
 5 of their pieces of luggage which included a very important wheelchair apparatus for a child with cerebral palsy did NOT make it.  The luggage was full of donations, medical supplies, and essential items that they had gathered to bless the orphans of Uganda with.
 And as the Lord would have it....we got to take this luggage..EVERY LAST STINKIN piece of it to them in Uganda, in time for them to do the mission that they were in the midst of.
  I'm telling you the Lord had a plan down to the very bag.  It was astounding just watching the events unfold before our very eyes.  It was a total gift from the Lord, He was showing me His faithfulness, and His care EVERY time that I would begin to panic about anything, He was showing me in VERY tangible ways that He was in TOTAL control, and the only thing I had to do was be obedient to the things He put in front of us and to keep our eyes directly on HIM.
 Every airport was a question for me, from God, if I was going to trust HIM.  I did not have the strength or the faith..I was sick sick sick from pregnancy, and over exhaustion, and He met me with His grace and strength at every step of the way, and He brought along this humungous luggage that we carted around to remind me who was in charge and who was orchastrating EVERY move we made.  When we reached Uganda and EVERY piece of our 7, yes 7, pieces of checked FREE luggage had made it ,I just had to laugh out loud.  My faith was so small and He was working with me.
Praise God for His faithfulness and His love and patience.