Month: October 2008

It’s my blog and I’ll cry if I want to

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I’m weeping for a nation that has turned away from the God of its forefathers. I’m weeping for a nation that is motivated by money and things instead of by the Truth of God’s Word. I’m weeping and begging God to bring healing to our land.

Only four more days until the election. I’m not feeling so good about this election. Neither presidential candidate holds all the views that I do, however McCain is definitely more closely aligned in some areas. As our Pastor has said many times, please vote biblically on Tuesday, not based on your billfold. I am fearful of what might happen if Obama wins. It makes me terribly sad that in addition to tons of other issues, thousands of babies will continue to be killed.

When I say “in addition to tons of other issues” if you’re not sure what I’m talking about here’s a link you might want to check out. I told Princess the other day that if Obama wins, as Bible believing Christians in a few years we’ll either be in jail or be silent. This fictional look into the future seems to confirm that.

http://focusfamaction.edgeboss.net/download/focusfamaction/pdfs/10-22-08_2012letter.pdf

Although it’s a little long I also enjoyed reading this article:

http://randyalcorn.blogspot.com/2008/10/why-im-voting-for-98-pro-life-john.html

I challenge and encourage you to pray about November 4th. There is so much at stake.

Get informed. Your state probably has voter guides available for specific issues in your state. Here’s a very brief look at how the presidential candidates stand on the major issues.

And vote. No matter what “side” you are on or how you feel about any of the issues facing us today, please vote. Don’t take our freedom for granted. And join me in asking our Heavenly Father to bring healing to our land.

2 Chronicles 7:14
If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.

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Not your ordinary love story, part 8

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I’m a little sad that this is the last installment of our love story. Although it’s been very difficult at times to share, I’ve enjoyed remembering the goodness and faithfulness of our Heavenly Father. Do you have a love story with Jesus? Please email me if you don’t but would like to know how it’s possible.

Read “Not your ordinary love story” parts 1 – 7 here.

I don’t even remember exactly what I said to Hubby and Princess about my heart change and recommittment to Christ. I think in the beginning I was still processing everything and continued to be more concerned about making things right.

I contacted my closest friends from my “first life” and alot of family to offer my apologies. The most difficult part of this was knowing who to contact. There were hundreds of people that knew me and my first husband, that loved us and prayed for us, especially as we battled infertility. Should I contact every one of them? I just prayed that the Lord would make it clear to me who I should contact and hopefully those that needed to hear it most from me did.

I did eventually talk to my first husband. Hubby was aware that I wanted to do this. I contacted a girlfriend of mine that had been a close friend and mentor to my first husband and I. She called my first husband and told him what happened and let him know I was willing to talk if he wanted to. I think it was that same night that he called. He had some questions and I answered them honestly. This phone call was so difficult because I had hurt him so deeply. I asked forgiveness and said I was sorry probably a hundred times. And then we said goodbye.

That first year I did continue to struggle with my own marriage, my choices and the “what ifs”. Satan taunted me day after day, continuing to remind me of my choices. Even though I had been made clean and whole when I recommitted my life to Christ that day, I was still dealing with much baggage. I knew I had to go on with my new life. My new family. But I wanted so badly to hang on to my old life. My old family. Because that is what I knew best. I didn’t know this person I was married to now. We had completely different values and beliefs. Things were just different. I lost the family of my first husband, three sisters who I loved dearly. A mom and dad who cherished and loved me like I was their own. It was my own selfishness that continued to want to hang on to these things, even when it wasn’t best for my marriage to Hubby.

What Satan meant for evil, God intended for good. And it started with Princess. I would drag her along to church with me. Hubby would come sometimes too but not often. One Sunday we saw an announcement for the church drama team. I love drama and I thought it was the perfect way to get involved in something that I loved but that wasn’t so threatening that I’d have to meet a lot of new people. Princess decided to come with me. We became a part of the drama team, both adults and teens made up this group. Princess made a friend, who continues to be one of her closest friends today. The best thing about this group was that at every meeting the leaders shared from God’s Word and made it clear the reason we were there was to bring glory to Him. That it was all about Jesus.

It would be through the drama team that Princess gave her life to Christ. She didn’t tell anyone but I remember seeing the change in her. She has grown to be an amazing woman of God and He has used her in mighty ways.

Hubby and I continued to battle. About everything. I hated this so bad. Not only did I just hate conflict in general but my first husband and I hardly ever fought. So every fight with Hubby would remind me that I had messed up. It wasn’t a reflection of Hubby either. It was a reflection of me. Satan would remind me and taunt me about my past and how I had rejected God. There were so many triggers that would cause me to wonder if I’d ever be completely healed and free from this torment.

One day I noticed that Hubby had changed. He started coming to church with us more often. Our values and beliefs started to mesh a little better than before. He was more loving and kind (not that he wasn’t loving or kind before, but now he was even more loving and kind). It wasn’t until a year or so later that he shared with me when he gave his life to Christ. You can read about it here.

After a few years of battling the torments and reminders of my past Christ brought complete healing to my heart. It was partially a choice that I eventually had to make. I had to let go of the past. I had to release my first husband and his family. I had to finally understand that things will never go back to what they were.

And God reminded me that He can make things new. He can bring complete healing. He gave me this amazing love for Hubby. This desire to help our marriage grow and be strengthened. God gave me a passion and respect and this deep affection for him that’s hard to put into words. He helped me realize the treasure I have in my two step-kids and my new extended family. And I came to actually be thankful for what I had endured. It allowed me to truly understand what I was (or wasn’t) without Christ. I never wanted to forgot what it was like without Christ in my life.

In June 2005 of God gave me my life verse. We had just lost our foster child O, a little boy we had hoped to adopt. I could sense myself falling into a depression. I was reading God’s word and I found myself at Esphesians 3:14-21. I hadn’t read this scripture for almost 3 years. I purposely skipped over it. This was the scripture that my first husband and I used at our wedding. Even after I recommitted my life to Christ I couldn’t read it because it brought back too much pain.

But God very clearly spoke to me that day. I could sense that I was supposed to read it. And I sensed God saying to me that it was mine to cling to. Even though I change with the wind He does not. His Word is steadfast and true, no matter what I’m dealing with. And these verses were meant for me.

And I really believed it. God put this assurance in my heart that He is able to do immeasurably more than we ask or imagine. That His desire is for us to understand and grasp how wide and high and deep and long is His love. That He would reach down into the deepest, darkest pit and rescue His child. God spoke to my heart that not only is the Word for me but that He wants me to share with others about this great love. I was not to hide anymore because after all, I was a new creation. The old was gone. And there were others that needed to hear about the love of Christ.

It was with this that I felt complete healing. Freedom from the taunting of Satan about my past choices. And then I did start to tell my story. My mom and I started a ministry to women and God has allowed me to share at these events and many other invitations have come to share my story. It’s been amazing and humbling.

At one of these events I shared that I know there are consequences to my sin. I do believe that. There are consequences to the choices we make. Afterwards a woman came up to me and wanted to talk to me. She said the Lord spoke to her a word for me and that she was suppose to tell me that there are consequences no more. I smiled and thanked her but as I walked away I thought, “Ya right. I don’t think that word is for me.” A few months later we heard about Belle.

I have to back up a little. I didn’t share this in my story but my first husband and I almost adopted a little girl. It was during this time that my heart had already left my first husband and I was struggling with knowing what to do. Even though we did have this precious girl with us for 6 months she eventually went back to her birth mom. This all happened in December and so December has always been a difficult month for me.

We heard about Belle on December 7th. On December 17th she was legally able to be adopted. This is the same date as the birth of the little girl my first husband and I almost adopted. On December 21st Belle came home. The same date that my first husband and I came home with the little girl. Maybe it’s coincidence but I sense that God has redeemed those days for me. And now Little Pip is due in December. I so don’t deserve to have December redeemed but God had saw fit to do that and I’m so thankful.

As wonderful as the love story of me and Hubby is, the most important love in all of it is of course the love of Jesus. I’m so thankful that He pursued me. I’m so thankful that He is faithful time and time again when I am not. My prayer is that you know this love of Jesus. The love of Ephesians 3:14-21.

And maybe you haven’t noticed but that’s where I got the name of this blog from. Grasp the Love.

For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

I meant no offense!

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So y’all know my post yesterday about Aunt Flow. I don’t think she was happy.

Ironically at 7:30 pm last night I started bleeding. You’ve got to be kidding me.

It kinda felt like I wet my pants. I was at church and was just on my way out so waited til I got home to see that it was blood. And I continued to spot and cramp a little.  Hubby was at work – the one night of the entire year he has to work late – but came home right away. He had called our sister-in-law on the way home and she came over to watch Belle until Princess got home from Youth Group.

And into the ER we went.

We walk in and the lady says, “Do you need to go upstairs?”.

Um, I have no idea. This is my first rodeo.

Yes, we did need to go upstairs to maternity. The nice nurse lady comes into the waiting room with a wheelchair and we wheely our way up to maternity triage. Strip down, get hooked up, pee in a cup, wait, get blood drawn, wait, get checked out my doctor, wait, have ultrasound, wait, wait and wait some more.

Everything looked fine. Baby looked perfect. Strong heartbeat. Kicking away as usual. I can’t really say I looked perfect but they weren’t able to find a real strong reason for why I would have started bleeding.

Although during my initial exam DR did ask me, “Did you fall today or anything?”

“No”.

“Oh, wait a minute. I did kinda fall.” Hubby looks at me like I’ve lost my mind.

Belle and I were heading out to do some shopping. After that we were going to go to my work. So I was carrying her and about 4 other bags and trying to manuever us past the side of the van. I stepped on a box or something and lost my balance and went down. I didn’t go all the way down. I landed hard on my rear on another box of something or other that was under me maybe two feet from the ground. It didn’t really hurt, more so just scared me. And then we went and did some shopping and then I went to work – lugging Belle in and out – having to carry her half the time.  So maybe I just overdid it a little.

Anyway – things are fine. I’m staying home today to rest. And after I finish this post I really am going to go back to bed. I’m still a little crampy but that might be from laying in that awful triage bed for 4 hours.

By the way Little Pip is so cute!  During the ultrasound we saw him yawn this huge yawn and his tongue comes out of his mouth. And he was grabbing his feet with his hands. The tech asked if we know the sex and we said boy. As soon as she brought him on the screen she said, “Oh yes, he’s all boy!”. He was showing off big time! 🙂 She printed some pictures of his face and profile and his head (where you can see hair!) but they are kinda blurry so I don’t think will come through good if we scan them. You’ll just have to wait to see him until he makes his official debut.

Hopefully he’ll hold out about 6 more weeks! Thanks for praying!

Aunt Flow I haven’t missed you one bit

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Disclaimer: Yes, when I say Aunt Flow I mean Aunt Flow, as in that so called friend of the month. Proceed at your own risk.

I was first introduced to Aunt Flow at the ripe old age of 11. Christmas break of my 4th grade year. I had no idea what was happening and didn’t think to ask my mom so for the first few months of experiencing Aunt Flow I made my own protection with toilet paper. Ya, that doesn’t work well.

From the very beginning I had very heavy periods. I remember in 6th grade I would often leak through my pants and would have to wear my coat wrapped around my waist. I was one of the tallest kids in my class at the time and was somewhat of a freak so this didn’t help me in trying to be less freakish!

Overtime in addition to being heavy, Aunt Flow started to cause tremendous pain. Ouch – it hurts just thinking about it. Then of course the whole emotional thing was fun. I’m pretty sure I was the most wacked out person alive.

But as with every woman, Aunt Flow just begins to be a part of life. Something you accept. Something you endure because you know the reason for having to endure it. As bad as Aunt Flow is you know that without it you wouldn’t be able to conceive a child so you just deal. And so even though it often caused me to miss school or work and always caused me to spend a few days in bed every month I dealt.

Eventually though, after trying to conceive a child with no success, Aunt Flow turned into my enemy. With no purpose. No reason for her to be a part of my life. The only purpose of Aunt Flow was to bring me physical pain and to remind me that I wasn’t whole. That there was something wrong with me. That I was a failure and unable to do what God created me to do.

Month after month. Year after year. Every 28 days I’d get my reminder. Approximately 118 months of reminders. Like I needed to be reminded.

One day God brought peace. It wasn’t without much pain, heartache and tears but eventually it was there. I realized there really wasn’t something wrong with me. I wasn’t a failure. There was a reason I was unable to conceive, even though I wasn’t quite sure what it was at the time. I wasn’t a mom in the sense that I wanted to be but I was a step-mom to two wonderful kids. There were numerous kids I was able to minister to in our church youth group. And so even though I eventually understood and came to truly believe this, each month that Aunt Flow would appear, the doubt would creep in. Trying to pull me back into the pain and depression and sorrow that often accompanied the never-ending Aunt Flow.

It wasn’t until I became a mom through the miracle of adoption that Aunt Flow stopped taunting me. Oh she tried. But I knew by then, without a shadow of a doubt, that this was what God created me for. To be Belle’s mom. And Aunt Flow could continue to come each month – reminding me of my inability to conceive – but she would never again remind me that I wasn’t a mom. Because I was.

Three months later she didn’t come. 23 years. 276 months. 8280 days since she paid her first visit. I didn’t even miss her because I had stopped paying attention to her. She was 10 days late in coming before I even began to question where she was. And the answer of course was one that I never expected. Little Pip was on the way.

So now it’s been 7 months since she’s visited last. 7 joyous months. Ironically it’s not the whole being able to conceive part that has been the most joyous. It’s not having to deal with the physical pain and the mood swings and the emotional turmoil that accompanied Aunt Flow all those years. To sense her coming and know that you’ll turn into a monster for a few days. That physically you’ll want to do nothing but lay in bed with your head under the covers.

Oh, how I’ve enjoyed not experiencing those days.

It’s a real bittersweet relationship, me and Aunt Flow. On one hand I’m so thankful for her. Two days before realizing I was pregnant Hubby and I talked about our plans for me to have a hysterectomy. I was a mom. And I’d dealt enough with Aunt Flow. So I’m thankful we didn’t have that conversation a few months prior. Because without her Little Pip wouldn’t be on the way.

But I know that her vacation will soon be coming to an end. Yes, I have a ways to go, especially if I breastfeed for at least Pip’s first year. But in the back of my mind and in my memories she is there. Waiting to return.

Take your time Aunt Flow. You haven’t been missed.