15 September 2014

1st day of Preschool

Haven began another year of Ironkids preschool. After much debate [mostly my own], we decided to send her yet again to Normal Community's Child Development classes so she can seek & develop the socialization she craves. She loves Mrs. Thomas, the Big Kid Buddies (high schoolers who take the class) and the friends she makes. It is also a great way for her to humbly realize she's not the "only fish in the sea".

Haven was very excited to learn her Big Kid Buddy from last year, Ms. Ali, is also her buddy again this year!

While many tears were shed by some preschoolers, this one forgot to hug me goodbye and settled right in! :)

07 September 2014

go back-stay here-move forward

I'm typing this blog 2 days before the third anniversary of my Dad meeting Jesus. Because today [Sept. 7, 2014] Arlan and I have the privilege of spending this Lord's Day with over 200+ college kids at our AC College Camp in Monticello, IL. It's a neat part of our ministry where we get to love on & interact with college kids from all over the U.S. It's special to hear their hearts. Share their pain. And tell our own testimonies of life. Which usually somehow come back to a journey in life, like the death of a loved one. In fact, just yesterday, we spoke on the topic of "Discerning God's Will". Wow. Not easy, huh? Thankfully, my wise husband took the lead and I was merely his "assistant" :)

Aside from the necessary adoption updates & prayer requests, I've done a poor job of documenting our lives this summer on the blog. But towards the beginning of August, my mind often wanders to this early September post and how I can possibly capture with words the thoughts and emotions that cross my mind in regards to losing my 62 year old Dad to the horrible disease of prostate & bone cancer.

I force myself to think about the journey it has been over the last 3 years. 1095 days. Hmm...that seems like a while. It hurts to still see Mom hurt. It is tempting to want to stay in my self-pity. When Dad first died and I would go grocery shopping, I remember wanting to walk into the store and shout "Guess what? I'm sad. I just lost my Dad." to everyone. I was sure the strangers would all come hug me & tell me it will be okay. I still sometimes want to shout that at the grocery store...why the grocery store-no clue? I just do.

It's the simple everyday things & routine days where I miss Dad most. Sure I think of him on holidays, anniversaries, celebrations and the like...but I miss him most when I can't see him get out the car with Mom, or call him up on his phone, or watch his pick-up pull up in the driveway at home or tell me to stop talking so loud. Oh...to hear him tell me to stop talking so much. I miss that. :)

I lost my Dad when I was 31 years old and statistics/averages will tell me I will most likely live more years without my Dad than with him...that's difficult to type. Let alone think about. 

However at the end of my thoughts & the end of each day, I do realize this:
1. My God is sovereign and He is good. He knows our lives & plans for us better than we should/could/would.
2. God doesn't call us to a life that is healthy, wealthy or easy. He calls us to holiness.
3. Daily provisions are ample & enough. Just like the Israelites got caught up in the complaining of manna, manna, manna...I, too, can also get caught up in my self-pity (think grocery store example :) and can forget that often, manna is enough. 

And the last encouragment I remember is below:

You can't go back.
You can't stay here.
You have to move forward.

I like that saying. I wish it was my quote. It's not. I read it somewhere once.
It's honoring. It's a motivator. It gets the focus off of me and to what plans our sovereign God has in store for us.

So...I move forward. I'm blessed to spend today with many college kids. Many friends. My husband and son (of course, Covey came to his first CC!). And with many prayers for my family today.

Thanks for listening to my heart. And thanks for your prayers.

For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.
Jeremiah 29:11