Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Saying Goodbye To Our Dog!

With all the excitement surrounding our new home it is tainted with sadness.  We cannot take our dog, Eowyn, with us.  Tomorrow she will go to the shelter.  Our hearts our breaking. I have cried so much.  Keep my kids in your prayers...saying goodbye will be tough.  

Today, we will love on her and hug her.  She will probably get a bunch of treats.  

We love crazy dog.  

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Move In!

We have been looking to move to a new city, where our new church is for some time now.   We know that God has told us to go there; but we have hit some road blocks in getting there.  Our biggest problem has been selling our home and finding a new one in the place God is telling us to go.  It has been so frustrating to know that we need to go; but not knowing how to do it!  

But when we step out of the way, God can do something amazing.

God wants us to be obedient!

In September, God told me to go get boxes.  I felt that He wanted me to start packing; because He was going to move us.  I got to a point that if I wasn't going to get them then I would be disobeying Him.  So, I turned my car around and went to pick them up.  As I threw the boxes in the back of the van I thought, "This is nuts.  We don't have a place to move to and we have not sold our house.  I have lost my mind...yup...lost it."

Three Wednesday's ago, at our new church, I went to choir.  A dear friend of ours stopped me and told us about some townhouses they use to live in and that we should check them out.  How could I have ever known that small conversation would start a chain reaction of miracles? 

The next day, John and I ho-hummed about checking into them. We finally decided that it wouldn't hurt to call to see if they even had anything we were looking for.  When praying for a home I felt God wanted me to pray very specifically for our next house, bedrooms, bathrooms, basement, everything.  I felt that was crazy too.  The lady at the townhouses told us that they had a four bedroom available.  She said that it was odd to have one open and no waiting list.  Apparently, there is always a waiting list for the four bedrooms.  On Monday, John went and got the paperwork.  

I then asked some ladies to partner with me in prayer, over the next several days, regarding the sell of our home and a new one.  Here is what I asked them Tuesday, Oct 2nd...
"Would you all take some time this week in your prayer time and pray for us. We really feel strongly that we need to move to our new city soon. Would you ask God to give us wisdom and release us from our house here. We need either a miracle in our house selling or some one to rent. Our house is what is holding us back from moving forward. It is time to move forward. You all are dear sisters and I know that you will lift us up in prayer. I know that you have been already. I just wanted to give you specifics on how to pray."

The next day, Wednesday, we went and looked at the townhouse together as a family.  It was perfect.  We loved it and decided it would be just right for us.  But we left depressed; because we could not afford rent and a mortgage.  We needed to hear from the Lord.  We needed to know if we were about to make the stupidest decision of our lives or take a leap of faith.  I was really hoping we were not making a stupid choice.  We needed God to speak to us A.S.A.P!

We were about to hear loud and clear what God wanted us to do as we walked into our new church that evening.  We each went to our different Wednesday classes.  And each person in my family talked to God about our situation.  My nine year old asked her class to pray for the sale of our home and to find a new one.  My 12 year old prayed about it in youth group and felt we should move to the townhouse...Could have been God or it could have been her own room.  She tells us it was God.  LOL  My hubby felt as someone prayed with him that we would be in the townhouse by Christmas.  

And then there is what God spoke to me in choir....

My choir has over 100 people in it.  It is like mini church in a big church.  I love, love, love it!  I stand way over on the side in the alto section towards the back.  We typically have praise and worship, short devotion by Pastor Leon, and then we practice.  We had just finished an awesome time of worship and I was putting my music together and looking at it while Pastor Leon was sharing what God had placed on his heart.  Yeah, I wasn't paying attention (sorry Pastor Leon) until he said something that captured my undivided attention.  

He said, "Some of you have some giants in your life that you are facing right now."

In my head I thought, "Yup Pastor Leon, my house is a really big giant, it is not selling."  

Pastor Leon the said, "God wants to remove that giant in your life.  In fact, He promises He will remove those giants for you."

"Ok, Pastor Leon I hear you, but God isn't removing my giant.  I don't understand why.  I know that He wants us to move here.  But we can't because of our house, our giant.  I can't make my house sell.  What can I do?" I said to myself

He then followed my question with this, "There is a condition on us for God to remove our giants from the land.

"Bring it Pastor Leon, I'm ready.  Tell me what it is I need to do!  I will do it...Lay it out there brother. I am ready."

"You need to go in and OCCUPY!  You need to MOVE in!"

"What!  Are you crazy?  Are you kidding me, Lord?  Am I hearing this right?  Is Pastor Leon hearing my thoughts?  Yes, I think I might be going crazy.  You are telling me to move in?!  Seriously!"

Pastor Leon said, "God has placed His desires in your heart.  You need to be obedient and move in!"



Yeah, I think he said it three times.  Finally, I told the Lord...."Okay Lord, I hear you loud and clear. We will take the leap of faith and MOVE IN!"  I hope Pastor Leon is really listening to the Holy Spirit; because this could be really bad.  Hahahahahahaha  I decided I better not tell him what we were about to do. I'm a pastor myself, I know that he might talk this insane lady out of it. LOL

(just in case you were wondering....yes I really thought those things and I talk to God like that all the time.)

On the ride home, our family decided that God was trying to tell us to move and we needed to be obedient.  It's crazy...but we will be obedient.  

Look! He has placed the land in front of you. Go and occupy it as the Lord, the God of your ancestors, has promised you. Don’t be afraid! Don’t be discouraged!’ Deut. 1:21 nlt

God wants us to listen

I think it was Friday that I was shopping at the local grocery store here and I was in a hurry to get home.  I was pushing my cart through the bakery and saw someone from our old church, we call her grandma.  I had to make a decision, do I talk to her or do I keep walking.  She hasn't seen me yet.  Has that ever happened to you?  I'll be honest there have been times that I have kept walking.  But Thank God, I listened to the Holy Spirit and stopped my stupid busy life to make time for someone.  

We chatted and then she said, "I sold my house, and I am looking for one in town."

"Grandma, you know we are selling our house?"

We chatted some more a determined our house was out of her price range.  The last thing I said to her was, "God has a home for you and a buyer for us."

I stood in my kitchen later that day and felt that God wanted our house to go to Grandma.  "Lord, if you can figure out how we can break even and she can afford it.  She can have it.  In fact Lord, I want her to have it. Work it out Lord, work it out."

We got our moving truck and my husband called Grandma's daughter to talk about the house and see if there was anything we could do.  

Last Wednesday, Granny sat our kitchen table and signed the purchase agreement.  God provided for both of us.   Our home will become Grandma's home in November.  God is so cool.

God wants to provide

God took care of releasing our home and He provided us the townhouse to rent. 

Last Friday, we signed the lease to our new home.  We left with the keys in our hands and the lady's there scratching their heads saying, "We have never seen anything like this, there is always a waiting list.  It was like it was meant for your family."  

We move in this Friday into the land that God promised us. 

Yup, God takes care of his children!  I have no doubts about that!

Here we are standing in front of our new home. 
Shorty did like it even though his face says otherwise.

Anyone want to help us move?  LOL  Not kidding!


Monday, October 8, 2012

Yet, I Will Rejoice!

I was walking in the park a few months ago. I had to let off some steam.  I was a very angry at where the Lord had led me to in my life.  I had some very dark thoughts running through my mind and I had to work some things out in my head.  Has that ever happened to you?  I'm pretty positive; I am not the only one.  

On my walk, I realized that it was getting pretty dark.  I thought to my self, "You are really stupid!  Why are you walking in the woods in the dark?  How do I get to a place where I feel more comfortable?  Walk faster and get out of the park...yup that is what I need to do.  Get to a place where there is more light!"

And God began to speak to me in that very moment.  Sometimes, we are lead to very hard places by our own making, others choices, or because God wants to refine us.  Those places in life, those circumstances can be painful, scary, frustrating and just plain to hard to handle.  You may feel like you are walking in dark woods alone.    

Habakkuk reminds us that even when faced with tough times, discipline, loss or when you just cannot see a light at the end of the tunnel... God is our light. He is our strength.  He is our joy!

Habakkuk 3:18-19
Yet I will rejoice in the Lord!
I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!
The Sovereign Lord is my strength!
He makes me as surefooted as a deer,
able to tread upon the heights.

God has been teaching me a whole new aspect of joy.  True joy is not that happy, bubbly, good feeling that as Christians we are suppose to feel.  HA  There is nobody who feels like that all the time.  If someone says they do, they lie.  I bought into that lie myself.  What I have discovered recently is....True joy is that feeling, deep down inside of your gut when facing the most horrible time in your life, that says,"Even though my world is crashing into pieces...I know God loves me."  "Who you are ain't what you're going through!" (Group 1 Crew "He Said")

"I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!  The sovereign Lord is my strength!"  Joy is knowing that God never leaves you or forsakes you.  Joy is knowing that God gives you the strength you need to face any situation.  God will not allow you to break!  When you don't think you can take once more step in your circumstance say, "The joy of the Lord is my strength!"  

That joy is knowing that God loves you. He died for you.  He saved you.  He has given you a future hope with Him forever in eternity.  He keeps His promises.  He meets your needs.  He is all you need.  Really knowing and feeling that I am a child of the Most High.  That is joy!  Joy is knowing you are loved no matter what by the Creator of the universe.  Joy is peace with God!

We cannot manage our lives, try as we may.  There is nothing we really can control.  All we can control in our life is our reactions.  God is the only one who can manage our lives.  He knows the beginning from the end.  He has our best interest in His mind and heart.  

Jeremiah 29:11

New Living Translation (NLT)
11 For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.

We have a new saying around our home these days...

I can't...

God can!
I might as well let Him!

True joy can only be found in the mighty God who made us and loves us with an everlasting love.  

Jeremiah 31:3
The Lord has appeared of old to me, saying:

“Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love;

Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you.


This song is my new favorite this year!


Saturday, October 6, 2012

Perfect Fall Day

Can I tell you what a picture perfect fall day it was today in northern Michigan?!
So perfect that we took the day to clean out the garage.  That lead to me checking our tents and making sure all four of our tents were neatly organized and put away.  We got a few out for fun!  The girls hair go a little static-e ...I had to grab some pictures.  

 We then drove over to our wonderful apple orchard to get some cider and apple cider glazed doughnuts.  They were so good and yummy.  It was a busy place to be at; but it was even more fun seeing my friend Angie and her family.What a good surprise to see them. We talked and filled our tummies with all that yummy goodness. 

 There were some fun old cars at the orchard.  I had to grab a picture of this car.  It was just too wonderful!  Don't you just love this car!

I decorated our front door,  I just love fall decorations.  I thought the football was a fun idea!  
Fall is my favorite season and I enjoyed every minute of it today!  Can't you tell?!!!!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

1, 2, Buckle My Shoe!

Don't you just love the old red desk?!
Did I mention that I am also homeschooling a preschooler?  I may have gone mad!!! LOL Just kidding.  Actually, something very exciting has been happening with my little four year old.  Before we started the school season, I could not get that boy to color or write.  He would not even try.  He would say, "NO, You do it!"

Surprisingly, I have been able to get him to do both.  It has been fun to see him really grow in his writing and coloring abilities.  I could not be more proud of shorty.  It has been rewarding to be personally involved with his learning process.  

He is too cute!  Everyday, he asks, more like begs to do school.  How fun is that?!  I am so glad that he is enjoying his learning.   

Do you see his "H" he did all by himself?
We have a very simple schedule that starts when we want to start, when I have a break in my time, or he has bugged me enough to get started.   hahahaha  Here is our schedule.... 
  • Do "The Day"
  • Work pages
  • Table Time
  • Book Time 

During "The Day"  we talk about what day it is.  We talk about the weather and seasons.  Shorty has an "About Me" page that has his name, birthday, age, and favorite color on it along with a picture of him.  We also go through the alphabet, count to 100 or 150.  Colors and shapes are also a part of our routine.  

He likes doing it so much that he goes through them all on his own now.  In fact, yesterday he was doing "The Day" for our dog.  I made all of "The Day" posters on card stock.  I will probably add some more in the future.  I used scotch tape strips on some so I could move the arrow or star each day easily without tearing the paper.  

I purchased a preschool work book from Walmart.  We are working through that right now.  It seems to be perfect for him.  We work on a letter and number each day.  We also do mazes, groupings, find objects, and a few other pages.  I figure we will be through it by December and I will go pick up another one.  

Table time consists of puzzles, blocks, projects, play dough, legos, or anything "special" (as he calls it) to do.  Yesterday, we did puzzles.  I pick what he does or we would be doing play dough every day...Messy!   I love my wood puzzles.  I have a bin of them and they are fun to pull out every once and awhile.  Yeah, there are toys that I keep put away for special times.  If I didn't do this all the pieces would be missing.  Hey, I know my kids and "how well" they take care of their things on their own.  Hahahaha      

We do not do preschool everyday.  Our lives have been a little nutty lately.  We probably get four days in and it seems to being working out perfectly.  I would like to tweak some things like praying before we start.  I keep forgetting that.  I also want to incorporate some singing time.  I have not been good about book time.  I want to challenge myself to read to him each time we do school.  I would also like to work on doing some more fun projects with him...Pinterest here I come.  We are definitely a work in progress.  

I am finding that homeschooling a preschooler is a joy!