January 31, 2008

Sad News

Very sad news. This morning they found the body of my friend's father-in-law. They found him in the water but we weren't able to talk long so I don't know any details as far as cause of death. It is a very good thing though, that they were able to find him so there could be some closure. His wife, has to go ID his body today and needs much prayer for that as I am sure it will be very difficult. There is so much to pray for. They have to figure out all the details to get him home which can be very challenging. Their kids have been having a terrible time trying to get down there so pray there will be no more problems. There are many things for his wife to figure out as far as their farm and just life stuff. Pray also for the Lord to work in the lives of everyone involved.

January 29, 2008

Please Pray!

I just received a call from a good friend of mine who I work out with three days a week. Her inlaws are in the Cayman Islands where they have a time-share. Today her father-in-law was diving and has been missing since 2pm. He is also diabetic so that is not good either. Please pray for this family. I will put out an update when I know more.

January 28, 2008

What we've been up to

Well, it was a crazy month of January! A couple weeks ago we stayed at a hotel and hit their waterpark in honor of Noah filling his potty chart with stickers. It was a very momentous occasion because he is actually totally potty trained! It was thrilling to not even have to put a swim diaper on him while swimming. The older two boys had a blast on the slides, in the pools and in the hot tub. The littlest man however was not too impressed with the temperature of the water so for the most part he enjoyed the hot tub in small chunks of time. We did get him in the kids pool and then the little pool for a very short amount of time and he had fun.

Caleb has become a great swimmer and traverses these places by himself (as long as we are watching).

Noah has no fear of the water, but needs assistance still on the big slides.

Elijah didn't mind playing out of the water!

Normal days at our house bring all sorts of fun. The boys keep this place hopping pretty good. This next picture is one of my favorite sights when I come into the living room. Even though he is almost always on the bottom and hits the floor first, Noah loves to wrestle with Caleb. They roll around like little puppies.
Elijah loves his bottles and Caleb loves helping him with them.

Why is our bed so lumpy?

Because of the little critters roaming around in it!
I taught the boys something that should entertain them for the next ten years or so. We went out on one of the beautiful, warm days and built a fort in the trees around our farm. It was a blast! As a kid my sibs and I used to spend many summer days building forts like this.
We had a pretty exciting night last night. The power went out for about two hours. It was great! We had the fire going and we sat around and sang songs and then made smores. What is too bad is that it took a power outage to make us spend that time together in such s sweet way. We all had so much fun and it was a great memory maker! It doesn't get better than praising God together from the oldest to the young. You can't tell in the first picture but it was very dark. The second picture will give you an idea.

Staying warm by the fire!

January 14, 2008

Crazy!

Maybe, you have seen this, but we hadn't. This video is absolutely crazy! It takes a while to watch so give yourself a little time (8min and 23 sec.). It is worth it though. Don't quit either, more happens than it appears. This shows there is Power in Numbers.

January 8, 2008

Heal the Wound but Leave the Scar

Heal the Wound but Leave the Scar is the title of a song on the latest album by Point of Grace. It is a sweet song and as I was listening to it this afternoon it made me think of something that happened a couple weeks ago. The song is talking about the wounds as a result of mistakes made in life, bad decisions, that kind of thing. It maybe refers more to sin in our lives and things in the past that we are embarrassed about. I think is can be seen two ways though. Let me explain.

About two weeks ago, I was driving to Minot to go to the doctor (imagine that), about an hour drive for us. It is very normal in my world since the summer of 2004, that every time I am in a car by myself for any length of time I begin to think deeply about Micah and the accident that occurred. Generally, I have to relive parts of it. I am not sure why this happens, but it always does. I don't know if it is because I am in a vehicle and it was vehicle related, or just because I have some quiet, down time but either way it is a common thing in my world. I don't tell you this so you will feel bad for me, it is just part of my life and who I am now. Those are memories I have and marked a change in me, my life, and our family forever.
Anyway, this particular day I was hit much harder than I had in a long time. I was in tears most of the way (usually I cry but not that long). The memories were so vivid and took me right there again. I had to feel and see it all. After working through it, I wrestled with the Lord a little, wondering what is the purpose of that. Why do I need to feel it all and hurt so much again? Now, it never goes away, there is always pain, but not so intense any more except in moments like this one. I pondered for a long time the Lord's purpose in those painful memories but was unsure why it was necessary.
A couple days later, I again found myself in the vehicle for an extended drive by myself. That is when it occurred to me, I need to remember so as not to lose my compassion for others, especially during Christmas when so many are struggling. I spent that drive praying for others who I knew were hurting. This is not tooting my own horn. It obviously took a lot for the Lord to get my attention and put my focus on others.
The song this afternoon made me think about all that again. We all have wounds in our hearts, either from sin in our lives or painful things that happen along the journey. Whatever the wound is from is not important, what is important is that we have that scar to remind us of what God taught us through the pain. My prayer is that each wound the Lord heals in my life I only hope He leaves a large scar so I won't forget. Our scars should lead us to praise God for His mercy and remind us of the beauty there is in suffering (as the song says). They should lead us to compassion and hearts and hands that go out to others. We shouldn't hide those scars either. The Lord wants us to encourage others with them. As Steve Saint (son of martyred missionary Nate Saint) told me not long ago, "Don't be afraid to let your scars show."
Lord, thank you for leaving the scars in my life, and please continue to do so. Use them Lord to bring me to my knees in awe of your mercy and how you use broken hearts, and to inspire me to compassion toward others.