Monday, October 22, 2012

He Provides

For those curious about how we are doing, settle in, grab a cup of tea, this is a LONG post (but I think a pretty good read!).

Well, we've been in our new city for 2 months.  Can you believe it?  We sure can't.  Here is my attempt at bringing you up to speed with us:

As we drove away from MD into the unknown, we were filled with sadness and excitement.  The trip down really went as well as could be expected.  Three kids and a dog on a 29 hour journey and we were prepared for some bumps along the way.  But they really never came.  We didn't get lost.  No one got car sick (including the dog-which was a major concern).  There were very little traffic jams.  There were no potty accidents.  Attitudes were gracious and the whining was minimal.  It was truly a direct result of prayer and the hand of God!

Along the drive we got to stop and spend some quality time with some really dear people, Zack's mom and Grandma, and our sweet friends the Caruthers.  Both stops provided us with some much needed rest from the road, as well as great company.

For those that spoke with us and prayed for us during this part of the move you already know that the most stressful part of all this for me was figuring out a place to live.  We have never moved with kids before and my our need to feel settled was amplified by wanting to begin homeschool shortly after we moved.  We basically had two options: live in base housing or buy.  Rentals were extremely over priced.  After much prayer and wise counsel, we decided to live in base housing.  When we were two days from arriving I called the housing office to inquire how long of a wait we had ahead of us.  (At this point we were #5 on the waiting list and had already been on the waiting list for 2 months.)  They informed us that we had about a 5 month wait!  To say I was stressed would be an understatement!  Z lovingly pointed out that God already knew where we would be living and we needed to be patient and wait on his timing.  Such a wise man I married.

So, we arrived in our new city.  All five of us and our dog in a one bedroom hotel with paper thin walls.  IT.  WAS.  INTERESTING.  The thought of living like that for five months terrified me.  "Trust.  Obey.  God will provide,"was my mantra.  Since we arrived at night, the housing office was closed our first day here.  So, first thing the next morning (three days after they told us it was a 5 month wait) we marched ourselves into the housing office to get some answers.  To set the scene: 1 husband trying to provide, 1 wife frazzled and desperate for a house, and 3 crazy kids-nuts with excitement over our new city and not being in the car.  Although the lady we talked to was nice, and sensed our urgent need for a place, she did not give us a house.  We had moved to #1 (yay) but we still had a 1-2 month wait.  No one had put in their 30 day vacate notice yet.  So, we left our number with her and told her we were praying someone turned in a notice that day.  She laughed politely, but I could see in her eyes that she thought we were a bit nuts.

That afternoon, as the kids were waking up and we were trying to load up in the car to explore our new city, my phone rang.  It was housing.  After the lady told me who she was the words, "I can't believe I am saying this." and "This never happens." were spoken.  A service member was supposed to sign their lease and move in that day.  They backed out and the house was ours.  OUR GOD PROVIDES!!!  We could move in Monday.  I was jumping up and down in the hotel room, close to tears.  We piled in the car and headed to check out our new place (we were just going to look at the outside but it was unlocked so we went in too!).

That Monday we moved in (although our stuff wouldn't come for another month).  In the next few days we met our neighbors.  Would you believe that our immediate neighbors (our houses are attached) have 4 kids, homeschools, are believers, and attend the church we visited the Sunday before.  OUR GOD PROVIDES!  Our neighbors across the street also homeschool, are believers, and attend our church.  OUR GOD PROVIDES!

Since our things got here, we have been settling into our new life.  There have been days when I am just so homesick for MD, but God is gracious and we really feel a peace about being here.  I have jumped right in our local MOPS group (I'm even taking over as co-coordinator-yikes!), have joined a bible study, and have enjoyed our new church.  The services have been so challenging for us and provided great conversation on Sunday afternoons.  The church also offers a Wednesday night program for the kids (which they LOVE) and Zack and I use that hour and a half to have a dinner date.  Every week, y'all!  I get a date every week!

We are excited about what our time here in the lone star state will bring.  I can guarantee that God is here and He has tons in store for us and our kids.  I am thankful we chose to obey and move here.  Missing the known (MD) but who knew that the unknown held so many blessings?  He provides.


Thursday, May 17, 2012

Change is Coming

Five years ago God moved us from Korea to Maryland.  I was 7 months pregnant and wondering what was in store.  No house, no church family, and only a couple friends.  We were praying that God would provide for us.  We were praying that we would be able to make it to 2 years before we were moved back to Korea.  I remember the ache and longing for deep meaningful relationships.  The community we left in Korea was like family to us.  It's like that overseas.  We ate dinner together, took trips together.  Now back stateside, the reality of "you do your thing and I'll do mine, we can just live next to each other but not get too involved"was so HARD!  I couldn't wait for Z to change careers and move back near family.

Looking back over the past 5 years I can't believe the way He has blessed us!  The ways we were able to get involved with His work here in MD.  The ways He grew our family.  Who knew that in 5 years we have grown from 2 to 5!  And the family we have found here in our friends.  The holidays we spend away from our blood relatives have been filled with the company of the people who answered my prayers and sought to build deep meaningful relationships with us- all of us.  They have loved on Z and I and our kids.  We have grown and been blessed.

After 5 years of living in the north, still feeling called to this same career, we have orders to head south.  This summer we will embark on a new adventure in the lone star state.  I have to admit, I am SAD.  Leaving our church and friends here is going to be difficult.  Moving with kids across the country seems overwhelming to me right now.  How will I explain that the only place they have ever lived is no longer their home?  That they can't go over to their friend's house.  That the C's wont be coming for dinner tonight, even though it's Tuesday and we always have dinner with them on Tuesdays.  It BREAKS my heart!  Is there a church in TX for us?  Are their friends there that will become family?  Where will we live?  Why is there NOTHING near our new city?  (seriously- the closest city is 1.5 hours away)

The answer to all those questions is easy.  God will provide.  He has proven himself to us OVER and OVER.  Why do I doubt he will do that again?  So I have peace.  Glorious peace about this move.  When I think about how he has kept us here for 5 years (when we were not promised more than 18 months) is just shy of amazing.  He kept us here so I would have support while Z was gone.  He kept us here so we would see the #2 eye surgeon in the country pertaining to Se's eye condition (is it a shock that we got orders right after her surgery and that she doesn't need another one?).  He kept us here so we would have the amazing opportunity to witness and be involved in a church plant.  HE kept us here.  And now HE is moving us.  I am sad to leave, but so excited to see what is in store for us in the south.  God is good all the time!  Even in the desert!

Watch out Lone Star State!  You are about to be invaded.

Our kids do not know about the move yet.  Please speak with care in their presence.  We are waiting till closer to the big move to save them from undue stress.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Prayer from a Little Person

My oldest Mo is such a sweet, tender hearted little girl.  She LOVES praying for people, and often stops mid-prayer to see if we have any other needs she hasn't covered.

A few nights ago I was battling a killer headache.  Mo was praying, thanking God for her day, her friends, and requesting a good nights sleep.  She stopped, looked at me and asked, "Momma, does your head still hurt?"  I said yes and she earnestly asked for healing on my behalf.  She then looked up at me and asked, "Momma, is Mr. J still in Afghanistan?" which I said yes, and then she earnestly asked for his protection and that God would help him come home safe.

Her sweet thoughtfulness at the tender age of 4 is humbling to me sometimes.  Does my 4 year old pray for my friend at war more than I do?   She makes intersession for him almost every night.  Had I stopped and asked for healing for my headache?

What a joy it is to see my children seeking the Lord for help so early and to see them realize answers to prayer is even better.  Just a year ago it was her daddy she was praying for and now (7 months after he has returned) she will still pray, "Thank you, God, for bringing Daddy home safely."

May she always pray for others and may I learn from her and her sweet spirit.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Long Time No Blogging

Life has been lived so abundantly the past several months and I just have not blogged one single event in this life story we have been living.

I promise we are still alive and doing well.

I promise to return to the blogging world.  I have a TON to share.  God is so good.

But for tonight I will leave you with this, something I have been dwelling on lately:

Micah 6:8 "He has shown you, o mortal, what is good.  And what does the Lord require of you?  To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God."

Ephesians 4:2 "Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love."

Thursday, June 16, 2011

That's My Girl

My desire is to model modesty to my two little girls and handsome little dude.  I want them all to see the value of it, and that it is an act of obedience.  I take this task very seriously and the word 'modest' is used often in our home.  Yes, my oldest is only 3 but I feel she needs to learn about it now.

"Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine.  They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled."
Titus 2:3-5

It is my job that my kids, my daughters especially, learn to be pure.  I believe a huge part of that is modesty.  Often when Mo is being silly and forgets we have company over she will leave the bathroom door open, lift up her shirt (just because she is being silly, not provocatively) or request naked booty time.  She has also been known to strip down anywhere and everywhere if there is a swim suit and water fun near by.  I use these times, however innocent they are, to teach her how to modestly behave.  You know, shirt down, bathroom door closed, not changing in front of boys-the typical 3 year old stuff.

Tonight, a good family friend was over and lavished some attention on my kidlets.  They LOVED it!  One of their most favorite times was wrestling and walking on the ceiling.  I could not be prouder when I hear a cry from the wrestling floor, "My mom said I HAVE to be MODEST!!!"  Moriah was being flipped and her shirt rose up.  She made the wrestling stop so she could put it down.  At 3.  That's my girl!  You keep your belly (and chest!) covered!!  My sweet dear friend (the wrestler's wife) called Mo over and taught her how to tuck her shirt in.  She was thrilled to be able to wrestle with the boys without being improper.  Seriously-so proud of the little lady she is turning into.  My heart is full of love for her and the Godly women she will one day become. 
My modest Mo, shirt tucked, walking on the ceiling

Just for fun, my little dude, copying what his big sister does.  He sure looks up to her and loves her.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

A Bit of a Rough Patch

It happens to all of us.  We hit a bit of bumpy road in our life.  Well, since I promised to be honest on this blog, I want ya'll to know I am there now.  My absence from the blogging world is because Mom always said, "If you don't have something nice to say, don't say anything at all."  And there it is.  The honest truth.
Not that nice things haven't happened recently, because they have.  I just haven't been in a place where I can happily blog about them. 
I am tired. 
My days are long and the nights seem even longer. 
My baby Se is weaning herself and it has been miserable.
I wake up overwhelmed, hit a mommy groove in the middle, and go to bed feeling overwhelmed again.
But God is good, and His grace is sufficient.  He has been providing for me everyday.
I know it will not be this way forever, and I will use this time to learn and grow.

Have no fear, I will be back to the regular scheduled program very soon. 
But for now, I am just going to sleep.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Beach Bums

Se's first time seeing the ocean!

Mo enjoyed playing in the sand this time but was still very hesitant about the water.  She only got her big toe wet!

K and L

"What is this?"
"It doesn't taste very good."

It was a gorgeous day

"We love Daddy!"

Off to check out the water

Se was not impressed

This was the beginning of the end.  L didn't stop crying after this till he was safely deposited into the stroller.

Our beach day only lasted 30 minutes.  Weeping and crying forced us off the sand and into the pool.  It is foreign to me that my littles don't care for the water, sun and sand.  Every time we come to FL I take them again, in hopes that they will change their minds.  I have already seen a little bit of 'like' for the ocean shine through.  Mo and L both played in the sand and liked it this time and Mo put her feet in the water voluntarily.  It helped that our friends we went with LOVE the ocean and little K had no qualms with getting wet and sandy while tromping through the beach.  Maybe we will shoot for an hour next time.  Someday we will work our way up to an actual day at the beach.