Monday, April 27, 2009

The Disappearing Act

It was bound to happen and today it did.

I was standing on a chair getting some things down and when I turned around I saw it:

The Grandkids room (as I've always called it) wasn't there anymore. I had been working most of the day in this room pricing things I didn't want to keep and setting things aside that I did want to keep when all of a sudden, as I turned around, it didn't look like the same room. It was gone.

I had dreamed and planned this room for some time with Jake and Max in mind. I got finished with it just in time to have them spend two weeks here while Josh, Jodi and Oliver went to Africa to pick up Noah.

It became their room. As a matter of fact, Jake told me that just last week when I jokingly asked them why they were in there without asking me if they could be (they had beat us there after church). He replied "well, it's our room!" That's what I had wanted - their own place to be away from home.

But now, even though the basic room is still there, it's gone.

I must admit - it brought me to tears.

This is hard. Really, really hard.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Count Down Begins

It's official. We have too much stuff.

I saw a picture once of the belongings of an American house and also those of a few other countries, outside on their lawns. It was embarrassing to see what the average family has here in the United States compared to the rest of the world.

And the even sadder, more embarrassing thing:

I do believe we have even more than the average.

We've made it through the basement so far. Sorting, pricing (for our sale) and setting aside the things we want to take. So much stuff that we kept because we might need or want it someday. I think there will be freedom in letting it go. Freedom in having less. I found it easier and easier to NOT add things to the save pile as the week went on. As a matter of fact, I'm sure I'm going to sort through that very pile again as I pack and whittle it down even smaller.

I really don't want my identity in things. I want there to be more to my life after I'm gone than a bunch of stuff. I want to invest in things that matter. Things you can't put a price tag on. I didn't really give it that much thought until I saw the pile of empty tubs today. You know, the ones that had been full at the beginning of the week. The contents I no longer need.

There should be some empy, plastic tubs at our sale too.

Monday, April 20, 2009


I just got an e-mail.

They'll take the cat!

They'll take the cat!

The Alter

Our God is a miracle God.

When asked where we were in the process of getting ready to go to Brazil we would respond, "Well, the next step is to sell our house." Most usually we would get the look, sometimes people would say it right out. "Good luck in this economy." And just to make the point, some would even add, " Nothing is selling right now." After one such encouraging conversation, at church, I commented to Warren that I wished people would know how discouraging that can be when you're in the waiting stage. He replied that the story of Elijah had come to him and he wanted to say "bring on another barrel of water, then we will know it's the Lord. Where would the miracle be if it were a sellers market? But this way, when the house sells, we will not be able to take any credit and it will show everyone that it is the Lord".

We had an offer that Friday evening and by Saturday the counter offer had been accepted.

The buyer saw the house and property for the first time on Saturday! The inspections were also done on Saturday. At the end of the day we got a call that the buyer would like to meet with us. We had an hour and a half with just the three of us talking. Warren answered some questions and then he began to share about how the Lord had brought them to this house. As he told the story we were, once again, amazed at our God. How He does work everything out for our good. How He is working behind the scenes when we are unaware. All along there had been "barrels of water" poured on this alter and yet God was able. God has even answered the little desires of my heart with these buyers. They love the house. They love that we repurposed things for use. That we kept the integrity of the age. They wanted a place to garden and have fruit trees. He does woodworking as a hobby and is so excited about the shop. They want to put a tree house in our grand Oak in the back yard. (We wanted to do that for our grandchildren).

They are even buying our tractor.

Now if I could just convience them that adding cat number 5 to their pets is no big deal....

Saturday, April 18, 2009

It's in the Picture!

I'm feeling a little like this looks today!

It's the day the buyer comes to view the house (remember he's never seen it!) and also the day of inspections. I know that God has all of this under His control, that He knows all there is to know, and that He is working all things out for our best - but I am still nervous and will be glad when this day is over.

I battle with this. Knowing how to put faith into action. I was talking with Josh about it yesterday and he said that he believes we all struggle with it at some point but that it's so important not to let it immobilize you to the point that you refrain from acting on faith. That is the danger.

I know that God knows my make-up. I know that I have a big God. I know that He wants to do big things. I know that He is able. I know that He has always shown Himself faithful.

Now if I can just tell it to my sick stomach. :)

picture by Jodi Yoder

Saturday, April 11, 2009

He is Risen Indeed!!!

Happy Easter!

I am so very thankful that I serve a risen, living God. A God that knows me and loves me as I am. It's mind boggling to think or to try to imagine what He really did for me there on the cross. Thank you, Jesus!

In other matters:

God, once again in this waiting process, has made His will known to us. We had an offer made on our house yesterday, we counter-offered today and a few minutes ago heard that it was accepted. Of course we still have inspections to do and one very crazy hurdle to cross: they haven't seen the house yet! They have visited by means of the virtual tour and then sent the realtor to "spy out the land" and on that have made the offer. They will come to visit next Saturday.

We, once again, stand in amazement of an awesome God. We know that this is nothing short of a miracle and, believe me, we are praising the Lord today. We marvel at the way He has made it so clear that we are to go to Brazil and are so thankful for the clarity of His direction in that. We know that there are likely to be times in Brazil when we are going to have to go back to the past to confirm His will that we are there!

At times I have had only a mustard seed of faith but my God has remained faithful.

We desire your prayers in the completion of this sale. The viewing next Saturday, the inspections and the time frame. In all those areas where the enemy can come in an take our joy.

We are rejoicing!

Picture by Jodi Yoder

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Learning to Know Him

After spending considerable time with these two little guys yesterday - watching them play, tease, cry and console each other - I came to realize that they truly know each other simply because they have spent time in each other's presence.

They can't talk yet but they say things to each other. I was fascinated by the way they communicated without a word and better yet, by the language the two of them have come up with. They know what makes the other one annoyed or happy. I watched as they would cry for the toy the other one had, wanting it only because the other one had it. I watched them pat the other to comfort him when he cried.

They don't know life without the other.

They are companions.

And I'm sure that bond will only grow stronger as they grow older because they spend so much time together.

I was comparing their relationship to mine with the Lord and realized I wanted more time with Him - simply because I want to know Him so well.

photos by Jodi Yoder (and don't worry, Noah's hair has grown back!!!)

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

the Heart of the Matter

I don't think that he got up there with confidence. I'm not sure, I didn't ask. But I know him, and I doubt it very much that he was overflowing with feelings of being an "overcomer" at that moment. I had been anticipating this moment and I was praying under my breath. I was not to be disappointed.

He was the best worship leader ever.

Okay, I know that is probably living in deception (I'm sure there are plenty of mothers out there that would argue this point and they should!) but I couldn't see past the love that I have for him.

Brett is my son.

And when I saw him in front of the church leading worship I reacted with a mother's heart. I was overwhelmed with joy and thankfulness.

My son was worshiping.

I know him. I'm not so naive as to think that he shares everything with me but I do know that I am blessed that he shares a lot. Struggles, failures, disappointments, sins...along with blessings, joys, love and hopes.

I know his heart.

So I looked at that boy and his worship was pleasing to me. It brought me joy. I knew he didn't stand before me or anyone else in that room as perfect but rather as a worshiper before the One who is.

And as my heart filled with {pride} the Lord reminded me that that is the way He looks at me and everyone else that worships. It pleases Him. He is overwhelmed by the offering. It brings Him to tears.

Simply because I am His child and He knows my heart,
I have become the best worshiper ever in His eyes!

III John 4 I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.