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Archive for January, 2014

I have been on assignment the last 3 nights and driven “the fish bowl”.  I start by taking 178 to 321 N into Columbia, catching 26 E to 176E to 95S then getting on 78N up to 321 going N until the fish bowl is completed.  It is about 167 miles round trip.  What stuck out about the drive part of the trip was the number of deer on 78 verses 176.  I told my husband the next day, “The hunters are a better shot on 176 than they are on 78.”  The room filled with laughter.  I had come across at least 5 families of deer on 78 and one deer just stood in the road until I nearly came to a stop and honked.  Then it sauntered across like, “I am king here!”  And I wasn’t even a quarter of the way around the “fish bowl.”

The second night I kept my eyes wide open, for my second look.  I wondered if my assessment was correct.  And then realized why I hadn’t seen as many deer on 176 as 78.  On 176 there are more open fields and less trees along the road and nearly the entire drive of 78 trees line both sides of the road.  So, it wasn’t that the hunters were better on 176, it was that the hiding places, living places were more plentiful on 78.

So, my assessment from the first night did not include all the information needed to make the decision I had so willingly shared after the first night.  Have you done this before?  Made a judgment without all the pieces, without taking things into the right context (like trees close to the road or open field)?

Too many times I have done this even with my children.  I hear there is a problem and step in to take care of matters only to make a quick judgement on what I see when I walk into the room without checking with the children to make sure I have all the facts.  This has caused me to discipline the wrong child.  Since I have done this more than once, I have given my children permission to interrupt me when I am assessing a situation incorrectly.  I don’t like it when I discipline the wrong child but sadly it has happened.  And when I am made aware of my wrong doing I:

A. Blame the Child for My Wrong Behavior…

B. Ignore the Truth…

C. Immediately Apologize to the child I accused for doing wrong and had disciplined (sadly I can’t take back the discipline but I have found other ways to make up for my wrong, hasty judgement of the situation) but then the child at fault gets disciplined twice.  First, for their wrong behavior and Second, for letting their sibling take their punishment.  Siblings have to know they can trust each other, trust is crusted when they let another get disciplined for their wrong behavior.

Sometimes it is just better to take the second look, make sure you have all the facts, make sure you have fairly judged the situation, make sure you aren’t taking your own “issues” into the situation but assessing from a clean slate. It just works better, some might even call it wisdom.

When hunting season opens again, head to 78 please. There should be 5 families all fattened up ready to fill your freezer.  🙂

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Lydia had a great appointment Thursday.  Too funny when the machine beaped to say her fluids were done she jumped off the bed and nearly ran out of the room still hooked up!  Then the nurse had not changed her dressing on her boviac.  Lydia tried to leave 3 times.  This next appointment will be the last time she has the med. that keeps us there an extra 4 hours!  So excited to be getting done with that!

A huge Thank You God for Lydia gaining another 1/2 pound!!!  This is good news.

She has two weeks and two days before she can eat again.  I was going to do the “count down” but I thought that would be depressing to dwell on it so much every day.  So we delight in another week closer to eating!!!

Blood work all looks great!  She is completely off of the cyclosporine, the 6 month med. that suppresses the immune system to prevent Graft verses Host Disease so now she is building her immune system!  Build immune system!  Build cilia in digestive track!  Build appetite!  It is time to build!

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Need it for the egg on my face!  I was wrong, I was wrong, I was wrong…thankfully God’s love is enormous that the things others will try to hold against you He says He forgives you for.  Did you know that God loves a faithful heart ready to love like He loves?  Hurts my heart to think of those who don’t know the love of God.

In my own weakness I wasn’t ready to believe that this really was the time God had for me to return to the “conference world”.  Honestly, I embraced focusing on expressing His love to people individually, but when He is in charge of your life, He calls the shots.  And no matter how much I wanted to hold onto the doorframe when He flung the door open, it is time to return to ministering in group settings, even conferences.  I shared in a blog last week that God had “set me up” to do a women’s conference by the end of the month well…that is true and not true.

The conference I thought He wanted to do January 31-February 1st is moved to February 7th-8th.  Thankfully God has forgiven me and so much so that He already lined me up to speak at the Bamberg Cornerstone Campus women’s meeting Monday night!  Thank you God for the napkin!!!

AND thank you for the set up!  When I knew the date was wrong I asked God, “Why did you let me post that it was at the end of the month?”  In my heart I felt He said, “Because you wouldn’t have started praying about who was to be on your team and doubt is the killer of the destiny I have put in you.  I knew if you didn’t get zeroed in on a date you won’t have started the process.  Since you started the process I know you will finish it.  I will be with you.”

Love, love, love my God!  He is so kind and can be so provoking at the same time.  “Doubt is the killer of the destiny I have put in you.” Needless to say, I had to repent because, of course, He was right!

Positioning my heart to be full of His love.  Knowing and receiving perfect love removes all doubt.  Thank you Jesus!

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Lydia weighed in 2.5 pounds heavier than when she was discharged from the hospital last Wednesday!!!  Hallelujah!!!  My God is a great and mighty!  He makes a way when there is not way!

Lydia is also 2 and a half weeks into her 6 week fast.  She is not to eat any food for six weeks.  When they did the scope of her GI track they found ulcers and holes in her colon.  The doctors don’t want any food to pass through the colon for the entire six weeks (praying for speedy healing…Mamas just like feeding their children not telling them they can’t eat…but God knows what is best, so I trust Him to give me strength and Lydia).  Thankfully, they are allowing her to drink a specific formula that is already broken down so it should be absorbed into her body BEFORE reaching her colon.  THIS has been our prayer request!!!

The reason she kept losing weight was because her body would not absorb any of the food.  Therefore causing the continual diarrhea.  My Dad explained several months ago that the cilia in her digestive track had not come alive after the radiation yet, because they are what absorbs from the food what her body needs.  We tried to share this with the doctors but they were too afraid it was Graft Verses Host disease.  Thankfully, the GI doctor stepped in and is making sure he handles this in a way that her body will begin to do what it is to do.  Sooooo with a 2.5 increase in weight EVERYONE was amazed!!!

Thank you for praying for God to bring in the doctor’s needed for the task and wisdom to be given.  She is still extremely underweight BUT God is directing her path and continues to sustain her while her digestive system is restored.  We are praying for complete healing of her digestive track, top to bottom 🙂

This is the last week of the medicine that prevents Graft verses Host Disease.  Lydia’s blood work shows that her immune system is building strongly.  The doctor went on to report that Lydia is STILL 100% donor cell.  

Lydia asked, “Is there was any chance of that changing?”

The doctor responded, “No, you have been too high of a percentage for too long.”

Actually, she has been 100% donor since 30 days after transplant!!!  Wahoo God!!!  She is still to avoid large crowds but the Doctor said to Lydia, “You can probably go back to church by Easter. ”

Lydia responded, “REALLY!?”

The doctor, “Yes…Now that will be a celebration won’t it!?”

People it is time to dance on the Devil’s head!!!!

Selah’s response when she hears the report, “Can we go to Monkey Joe’s then?”

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Yep, I am going to pull out the God stick and say, “He told me to, ” and now I feel like the first drop of water that escaped through the crack in the 30 foot wide concrete dam.  All the water following is pushing me faster and farther than my mind can keep up with.

When we don’t understand something or are not wanting to admit we understand where something is headed, we like to say things like, “Wow, that was a coincidence,” or “They called out of the blue,” or “Pretty crazy, don’t you think?”.  Whether we let that thought go on purpose or we really do not recognize the connection there is still responsibility to the things God is putting together in our life.

For instance, just over a week ago I was sharing with a friend some of the difficulties over the last couple of months when all of a sudden I was reminded that I was going to start a ladies small group after Abigail and Josiah went back to Iowa.  I blurted it out and in a long pause I was thinking about all the “interruptions” and hardships over the last couple of weeks that caused me to forget to plan for and get the word out about the small group.  Thinking this was a personal attack from the enemy who would not want me to begin investing in people again and a quick process of this just might be God letting me know this was not the time to commit to a group weekly, without further thought I nearly came off the couch as I declared, “The enemy will pay for this!  Even if I don’t start the small group this month I will do a conference by the end of the month!”  It was amazing, that seemed to be the blow to the dam that opened the crack for me to flow through.

I would like to say that I immediately began planning but there was such a freedom released.  I was strengthened and made whole again after being on the front lines of fighting for Lydia’s healing for nearly a year and with her back in the hospital again.  It reached to the depth of my being and I knew I was ready for the next battle.  Every time I breathed in I became more whole and every time I breathed out I could feel yuck leaving me, scars from the battle being healed completely.  Honestly, I didn’t want the night to end, I wanted to bask in the presence of God.  It was like one of those dreams you never want to wake up from, you call out to your Mom, “Just give me 5 more minutes.”

Nearly 10 days passed and I didn’t do a thing with it.  It floated through my mind a few times and I let it go every time.  But God…He would not let me forget or let this pass me by.  I had spoken it and now it was time to come good on my word.  I have to say when it happens like it happened, it was God speaking through me maybe even to me using my own words.  I remember saying it, that I would do a conference by the end of the month but even as the words were coming out my mind they were slowly going through a bazzillion factors.  Even the thought, “Do you realize what you are saying?!”  I should have known then that God wasn’t going to let this drop.

So, as crazy as this sounds, there will be a conference January 31st-February 1st.  How do I know?  Because God won’t drop it.  Lydia, Selah and I watched our regular online services Sunday morning from Lakewood Church followed by Cornerstone’s.  Generally Joel Osteen does not give the title of the message but he did this week.  He shared about Today is Your Day where he talked about changing our “one day” mentality to a “right now” mentality.  We are to be expectant of God releasing His best into our lives which leads to “now faith” that produces the suddenlies in our life.  He kept saying, “Your attitude should be a right now faith.”  His words challenged the very things God has spoken to me when he said, “Change what you are expecting.  Be bold enough to have “now faith”.  You can be in the right place but in the wrong frame of mind and miss your now.”

Then we got online to watch our churches’ service at Cornerstone Community Church.  Our pastor, Artie Davis, was talking about God’s Voice; God’s voice is the best choice.  He said, “Some voices need to move us.”  He gave the illustration from Luke 5 where Peter has fished all night and caught nothing and Jesus tells Peter to throw his nets over the other side of the boat.  Peter starts to object but relents and says, “nevertheless at Your word.”  And Peter caught more than his net could carry.

And if that wasn’t enough a friend I hadn’t talked to in a long time called within 10 minutes after the service and said, “I had a dream last night about you.  I don’t put too much into dreams but I knew I had to call you.”  I asked her about the dream.  She said in the dream she was at church and had to call me and put me on speaker phone.  There was more to the dream but I had heard enough to know this was God…also.  While she was talking I threw a fleece in my mind, there is no way this can be done because it would have to be done on the 31st.  I checked the calendar and low and behold…the 31st is a Friday!  “Really God!?! You soooo aren’t going to let this go, are You?”

I didn’t hear it but I know He had a smirky little grin and let out a chuckle in heaven as He shook His head and said, “Nope…now get your mind around this.”

From the dream, I knew God would bring people around me to set this up.  Besides, if anyone can mobilize this in under 3 weeks, women of God can.  We are a mighty force!  I am to get ready to speak, because He is putting me on speaker phone. Ready, I will be, for the dam is broken and water is flowin’.

Breathing in His Presence is so refreshing. Thankful for the breakthrough!

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Watched a movie tonight and had to laugh when one of the guys asked what plan B was.  The other guy yells, plan B, we are past plan B, and plan C, D, E!  We are going to need more alphabet!”

I can so identify with that as I head to the airport with Abigail and Josiah for the 3rd time in a week!  We have tried Charleston twice to Chicago and both were cancelled.  Tomorrow we are headed to Charlotte to catch a plane to Des Moines.

We have been so incredibly blessed with the extra time with Abigail and Josiah.  Getting back what we all felt was stolen from us when Lydia was admitted into the hospital, Dec. 27th.  Tonight we celebrated.

When Lydia was admitted she was in a room too small for Scott to bring the rest of the children to visit.  We pray and three days later she was moved to a bigger room.  Scott and the children came to visit and we played games, watched movies and played with new toys in the room for three days.  We (and many of you) continued to pray.  Then Lydia was taken off of isolation so she could go to the Atrium, the children’s play room with all her siblings.  We continued to pray and many of you joined us.  Lydia asked me personally Tuesday night and we prayed again.  Her heart’s desire was to go home and spend time with her brother and sister (Josiah and Abigail) and family time before they returned to Iowa.  God moved some mountains and Wednesday night we all nestled on the floor for a family movie night and Lydia got Thursday and Friday to play with Abigail and Josiah.  God is so very mighty.

As much as we want Abigail and Josiah to stay, Lydia’s hospitalization made the situation very real as to how difficult it would be to home school 4 children unable to know when school would be put on hold and the unpredictability of resuming school.  We celebrate the extra week, bless Abigail and Josiah as they return to GrandDad and Grandma Linda in Conrad, IA for the second half of their stay, seek complete healing of Lydia’s digestive system, and continue to follow where God leads in order to establish His kingdom here on earth.

Lydia can drink 6-8 oz of formula a day and has TPN attached to her broviac for 12 hours.  She is still hungry and wants to snitch a bite.  The current plan is for her colon to have 7 weeks of rest because of the ulcers and holes.  The formula should be absorbed into her body before reaching the colon.  We are praying for healing in her colon, restored digestive track, and desire to eat to still be there when the 7 weeks are up.

Thank you for your continued prayers!  We appreciate every one of them!

 

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Plan F…

I am telling you, we could be our own TV program!  Flight from Charleston to Chicago…CANCELLED!

“Whoever thought plan F was a good idea!” Scott.

Scott’ s friended responded to the news, “God has a plan, just hang in there, buddy.”

To which Scott responded, “Yea, but He ain’t telling.”

lol!

So no flight, will be driving/flying to Iowa…sometime.  Just before we found out the flight was cancelled we found out Lydia was told last night by the gastro. dr. that she would not get to eat for the full 6 weeks!  We specifically gave instructions that ALL doctors where to talk to us.  We left Scott’s mom with Lydia while we came home to get the kids ready to go.  Lydia had a meltdown after the doctor’s talked to her.

First of all, who would be so insensitive to tell an 8 year old when their parents aren’t in the room that they can’t eat for 6 week!  Talk about no care for the patient or the parents!

While writing this more phone calls and the mess just keeps building with what Lydia is facing.  The gastro. dr. finally apologized.  The only good thing may be that she can get out of the hospital this week but still can’t eat.

One thing we have learned…EVERYTHING is subject to CHANGE.  And one thing we KNOW…GOD IS WORKING THINGS OUT FOR OUR GOOD.

Keep up the prayers…they are needed

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