Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The mommy in this picture is Natalie, and I "met" her on Facebook a little over a year ago.  We have two pretty big things in common...#1 We're sisters in Christ and #2 We each were chosen by God to raise a child with Williams syndrome.

The precious little girl in this picture that Natalie is holding is, Abby.  Abby's heart condition, due to Williams syndrome, had gotten bad enough that they will be operating on January 25th.

Pray for Abby's safety under anesthesia.
Pray for a successful and safe surgery.
Pray for John and Natalie that they would have peace and comfort during this time.

John and Natalie, Abby, Chandler & Micah, we're praying.

"Then you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus."  Philippians 4:7

It's nothing genius really...

Sometime late November I started using this dry erase board in our kitchen for prayer requests.  It's on the wall to the left when I'm standing at the sink.  I've always been terrible about using a list when I pray.  I would write requests down but then rarely pull it from my Bible.  So, I started this.   I'd used the board last year when I had home schooled Aubrey, and then it's just been hanging there, blank, for months. 

It's nothing genius really...

I realize it's nothing impressive or ground breaking, but it is a rather fantastic idea...even if I'm not the first to do it.

As I looked over from doing dishes a few days ago, I became utterly amazed that this board really needed some updating.  Many requests had been answered...a few not...some not in the way I'd wanted or expected...but many had.  

The Lord is sufficient to meet ALL of our needs...and I needed some encouragement... encouragement in the form of seeing God at work.

"And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus."
 Philippians 4:19

The requests that are now circled in black are the requests that have been answered.  We're so thankful that the biopsy for Brandon's grandma was benign and that she's recovering well and starting back to work this week.  We're so thankful that our friend Chase, had a successful surgery and recovery.  We're so grateful the Lord has provided someone to take the over the mowing business while Brandon coaches baseball this spring.  One request was a closed door on a job opportunity, but, we're praying the Lord's direction and provision in that situation. 

I'm going to leave the board this way for a few more days so that my prayers can be of thanksgiving and praise for what God is doing.  He's always at work, even when I can't see.

Open my eyes, that I may see
Glimpses of truth Thou hast for me;
Place in my hands the wonderful key
That shall unclasp and set me free.

In a few days, I'll be adding some new requests.  I would love to pray for you.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

This might be really hard to believe, but, I tend to be withdrawn and quiet when I'm in pain or struggling.  During each of my 3 labors, I would just roll over, hold on to the side of the bed, close my eyes and be silent.  I didn't yell, I didn't shout or even get grouchy.     I do believe during Aubrey's birth, this was somewhat of a surprise to Brandon.   Even during Nolan's labor, I was politely asked by 3 nurses (one nurse was mine and the other two nurses had two different women laboring) if since I was "handling labor so well' if I wouldn't mind if the other two ladies could get their epidural first.

So, because I'm quiet and not carrying on like a crazy person, you want me to wait?

Would you mind?

Actually, yes, I would mind, but, go ahead.

 So, I agreed and waited, quietly, while the other two women got their epidural.

I tell you this only to admit that I'm struggling.  Not because circumstances are bad, or something major has happened.  I'm not struggling because I have things worse than you do.  I'm struggling, I think, because the Lord's doing a work in me.  I don't think struggling is a sign of weakness, but, rather, a sign that we're mold able, breakable only able to be repaired by Jesus. 

I was reminded during a wonderful sermon last Sunday that He never leaves.  I knew this.  But, sometimes just knowing this doesn't cut it for me.  I know a lot of things, but taking it in and allowing it to change me, that's where I fail.   In Joshua 1, when Moses had died, and Josh was the new leader, the Lord laid out what He had in store for his people.  Verse 5 says, "No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life,  as I was with Moses, so I will be with you;  I will never leave you nor forsake you."  I need to meditate on this.  To meditate means to mutter.  I need to mutter both day and night...meaning to both of these extremes and everything in between.

He is with me, He is with me, He is with me...I'm struggling, but, He says He'll never leave.

During my quietness I wrestle with life.  I wrestle with wondering when will this medial debt be gone and wondering if there will ever be a time for Brandon and I where we don't always live paycheck to paycheck, only providing for ourselves the necessities.  We're not living high on the hog here folks.  We haven't taken a vacation in 7 years.  We will often go a week and a half with about $15 until the next payday.  All at the same time, I find myself so overwhelmingly grateful that the Lord always does allow us to make it.  We have never gone without food, I know of others who have.  We've never not paid a bill.  I know others who have.  When I get to heaven, will it matter that we never took a family vacation...just the five of us, where we didn't worry about money?  We have so many great memories together as a family not on a beach, or airplane, or with mouse ears on.  No, it won't matter in heaven.  

He is with me, He is with me, He is with me...I'm struggling, but, He says He'll never leave.

I'm struggling with the fact that Aubrey will be in second grade next year, Adelynne will likely be in all day kindergarten, and Nolan will attend developmental preschool 4-5 mornings a week.  I will do the morning school run and.then.come.home.alone.  These kids overwhelm me.  They stress me out.  They can make me crazy.  Sadness comes as I think about my girls being "school aged," and Nolan's pre-school childhood being cut short.  I struggle with sadness and fear of being alone.  I struggle with the "what's next" phase for myself in this transition.  At the same time, I'm overwhelmed with God's goodness to bring us to BCS and the opportunities our kiddos will have there.  I'm grateful for a little time alone as I've been home being mom for 7 years now.  I'm grateful we've made it this far, with everyone still in one piece.  I'm grateful for these amazing beings I get to call my children while the Lord still allows.

He is with me, He is with me, He is with me...I'm struggling, but, He says He'll never leave.

And if we're being really honest, I'm struggling with the fact that I feel like Megan is trapped in someone else's body.  I told someone this morning that I'm really ok with being chubby.  And, most days it seems that I am.  But, if I were really, truly, honest, with you, with myself, that wouldn't be entirely true.  The first year of Nolan's life, I became an emotional eater.  Sure I gained weight with all my pregnancies and lost most of it after both girls, but, Nolan, whoa, a whole different story.  I didn't get a chance to work on losing the pregnancy pounds before the stress, choas and utter paralyzing fear overtook me and I began to eat.  I've created really bad habits and have tried to no avail to really do anything about it.  I've felt powerless, like it's just something I cannot.get.a.grip.on.by.myself.  I tell Brandon all the time that I'm wasting good genes.  Have you seen my mom?  I have great genetics and I'm wasting it on self medication with food.  Yet, I feel so blessed to be in good health and to have a sweet hubby who doesn't care if I'm a little chubby.  I feel like the fact that Nolan is doing as well as he is currently was completely worth each extra pound...even if I don't feel like myself.  

He is with me, He is with me, He is with me...I'm struggling, but, He says He'll never leave.

And while I struggle with the back and forth of being Megan, and my complete and utter gratefulness to the Lord for this life He's given, and all the amazing things in between, I just wanted to say:

Hey, I'm here, I'm ok, the Lord's working, I'm going to allow Him to mold me into whatever He's got for me. In my quietness, He's at work in my struggle.  It's only in my weakness that He's strong, so, I know He's at work.

"Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it.  The you will be prosperous and successful.  Have I not commanded you?  Be strong and courageous.  Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go."  Joshua 1:8&9