Clever title, right? I do not know why I never think of good and catchy titles. But, I digress.
Yesterday was so much of a roller coaster type day of emotions.
First off, my niece that I posted about? Erika? She delivered the twins at 9:43 and 9:44 that morning, and they both weighed in at three pounds, fourteen ounces. This was a good weight in our eyes, because they were born at 36 weeks gestation. One was doing well from the start, and one had to be placed on oxygen right away. Also, the one that had been doing better was also put on oxygen because of how pale she was. And then last night, right before eight o'clock my time, I got a text that said both babies had been taken off the oxygen! She got to hold them BOTH yesterday. The one that struggled from the start was the one she didn't think she'd get to hold for a few days.
I really believe that God performed a miracle in this. Some may not agree, but my God is a God of miracles, and He is our great Physician. To Him be the glory.
I know that yesterday could have looked a LOT different for my family, but God is sovereign and His plan is perfect. I don't say that lightly, either. I have a friend who had a baby last Monday, and the baby only lived a few hours. Please pray for her. Her name is Rachel, and she is so brokenhearted over the loss of precious Lyndi. I do not understand how God works, and why things happen the way they do, but I do know this: He is good. He is sovereign over all. He is faithful. He is Creator and Author of life. Even if our day had looked very differently yesterday, I would still say all of this, that God is good all the time, in every circumstance, not just when things turn out good. He is good all the time.
I have said that a million times, and I will say it a million more until the day I die.
Yesterday I also received news that a sweet friend of mine had passed from this earth into heaven. Tarin and I met six years ago, in the midst of a tragedy at our local elementary school. A teacher there had two sons (out of three) that were killed in a plane crash, and a group of us moms met in the back of the school parking lot to pray for her. Tarin was there that day, and the next week, we started a new location for Moms in Touch (now it's Moms in Prayer). To my knowledge, we were the first group of moms that started that up, and it is still going strong today. We met every single Monday for the rest of the time my kids were in that school. Jonah and Noah only attended through the third grade, and the next year I started homeschooling them. For years, then, Tarin and I prayed together weekly. We saw her sick and we saw her healthy. I never knew her without cancer, though for a short while, she was in remission. Her son Cannon and my Drew and Graham played lacrosse together for two years, and Drew and he were best friends for a while. She has two more kids, Katie, who is a freshman in college, and Kari, who's in the seventh grade.
The life of this dear woman of God impacted so many lives all around her. Mine is just one. Her faith in God never wavered, and even on her sickest days, she was full of praise for Him. I've never known anyone who loved like Tarin loved people. Her kids, her friends, perfect strangers. She ministered to so many around her as she fought off this wretched disease in cancer clinics. God strategically put her in specific places during her sickness so that others could come to know Him. She used everything that God allowed her to go through for His glory. I have never met anyone else like her.
A sweet memory of her was one time when she invited me to a womens conference at her church. I didn't want to go, I didn't feel good, and I basically fought her over this. She refused to leave my driveway until I got in her car and went with her. It turned out to be one of the best weekends I'd ever had, and I was so ministered to as I sat under the teaching of Priscilla Shirer. Another time I remember, the only time I ever saw her like this, was when I stood with her and then held her as she screamed, and begged God for a miracle to heal her of cancer. She was so tired of fighting, even back then, and she was so scared for her kids. She wanted reassurance of seeing them grow up. We stood in her front yard that day, after her screaming stopped, and just held each other and cried together, because words failed me. And she didn't need my words, anyhow, all she needed was someone to hold her tight.
I said this before: God is sovereign. I don't always understand His plan or how He works, but I know that He is trustworthy. I know now, that God kept her here so that some things could be fixed, relationships could be restored. I know without a doubt that her kids will be in good hands with their dad now. God healed her broken heart, I know, and He gave her sweet assurance that they would be okay in the restoration of a friendship between two parents of teenaged kids. God is good, all the time, in every circumstance.
Please help me to pray for her family here. I don't know of other family members, just of her kids and her church family and friends. I am so thankful that God is close to the brokenhearted. He comforts and He gives peace. Drew said he would attend her funeral with me whenever it is this week, so that he can be there for Cannon. I pray that God can help them to be friends to one another again, they just grew apart eventually, as teenagers often do in their friendships.
I have written all of these things out to God. I have told God how thankful I am for His hand in these circumstances I've written about today, and I have found many things to be grateful for in all of this. I'm trying to practice gratitude every day this year, and each day, I write out five things to be thankful for. Some of are silly, some are very serious.
I've written lots over the past couple of days, needless to say, because that's just what I do. When words fail me in coming out of my mouth, they flow easily out of the ink of my pen.
On a much lighter note, I finished my journal this weekend. I am sad to see that one go, the Lord and I had some great quiet times together in the past couple of months, and the pages were so full of my heart poured out to Him. As sad as I was to put that one away (I haven't actually done that yet), I am always excited over the prospect of a new one. Thursday night after dinner, my mom-in-love and I went to the Lifeway by her house and I bought these. They were all bound together, and though each one is thin, together, they're a lot of pages. Aren't they beautiful?
I'm using the one sitting on top of my bible first. I have already written so much because of a conference we've had at church the past two days. In two days, we've attended six sessions of the Answers In Genesis conference, and it was amazing. I'm so thankful we went! And my kids are done with history and science for the week. (Kidding, but not really...it was a LOT of information.) Homeschooling perks.
Well, I have a lot to do in the space that is called today. Thanks for reading my blog and for being in my life...I know a lot of you don't comment, but I know you're there reading, because I can see it in the stats. So, thank you so much. Also, so many of you commented on social media how you were praying for my family or me, and I cannot say enough how much I appreciate those prayers. If I can pray in any way for any one of you, please tell me how. I promise to keep it between God and me.
I am so thankful that we can be there for one another, aren't you? God's gift of fellowship is just that...a gift, and I am so grateful for it.
Love to all.