Andrej decided to try to ride his brother’s BIG bike while Petr was away at school.
I was shocked to find him accomplishing his goal. He could barely reach the ground but that didn’t stop him! He flashed a smile of glee as he rushed past me proving he was not so small. Andrej just won’t stop pushing the limits of his physical abilities. I love the way this little guy “goes for it”. Wondering what is around the corner…hopefully not a trip to the emergency room.
We have light! Paul’s parents blessed us with a new light for our dinning room. The old light was very dim and we were straining to do homework, Bible Studies, and just see our dinner (well, it wasn’t that bad!). We had gotten used to it and were content, not really noticing. Paul’s parents really wanted to bless us and said that we “needed” better light. Danny was gracious to spend the time to install it for us. The light is just simply beautiful. I never thought I would get so excited about a light fixture over our dinning table. But, it makes a big difference. We didn’t know how much in the dark we were until we had good light. Isn’t that how it is spiritually? God shed’s His light on our life and we realize how much we were walking in the darkness before we knew Him. Sometimes we think we just need to put in a new light bulb but what we really need is a whole new light – Jesus, the Light of the World! I enjoy reminders of God’s goodness found in the details of everyday life.
Remember the big wheel growing up? For me as a child, the big wheel was the riding toy to have. I grew up in a house that had a killer driveway. It was perfect for picking up speed. When Paul’s mom and I were shopping we came across this great big wheel. It is the only one I’ve seen since being here so Sherry decided Andrej just had to have it as an early birthday present (his birthday is Dec. 5). It sure brings back memories as I watch my little guy speed off with his big wheel. Thanks Grandpa and Grandma!!
Petr’s class doing a skit about Noah’s Ark for Chapel
Petr is in first grade! My mommy heart is trying to comprehend how our first son grew so fast. Petr’s first day of school was filled with excitement when he found his very own desk! I watched in awe as he spent every moment possible organizing the inside of the desk (yes, the top lifts up…so cool) By the look on his face, you would have thought Petr was sitting on a throne instead of his school desk – he looked so proud! Well, if you could have seen my face….you would’ve seen that I was even prouder! My baby turned into a little toddler and now is becoming a big boy – half of a man, as our Pastor in Africa puts it.
When the Lord called us to Africa, I knew without a doubt that we must go. There was not one ounce of my flesh that wanted to go, but my spirit was hungry to serve the Lord and remain in His will- not my own. There were some tough times in the process of getting to Africa, mainly telling our dear family and friends that we would be moving oversees, away from all those we hold so dear to our hearts. However, God continued to confirm His call for us to go. He confirmed it over and over…I really needed confirmation as I am so weak at times. One confirmation was a scripture given to me a month before He called us to serve Him in Africa. The scripture was Isaiah 41:8-10. The Lord talks about not having fear because He is MY God, and that He will strengthen me and HELP me and UPHOLD me with His righteous right hand. The scripture continues even more powerfully in the lines that follow…for I MYSELF will HELP you, declares the Lord, your REDEEMER, the HOLY ONE of Israel.
Nothing could be more true of God and HIS care for me and our family as we have been here. There are countless times that His hand has held me up. One such event started a week ago when I found out we lost another precious baby (our third miscarriage – I have not written yet about the second miscarriage as it happened a month before the AIM Air plane went down. Our loss seemed minimal compared to the loss the families had in loosing a husband and father to their four children.) This time I made it to 9 weeks…really 11 weeks and then went in to discover that the baby didn’t have a heart beat and only measured 9 weeks. I went through the necessary procedure to pass the baby naturally (as I successfully had done the two times before). Yet, this time I was in for a journey I never would have imagined was ahead of me. I spent two hours trying to “pass” the baby and it was too big. I did all that I knew to do. The baby was more than half way out (sorry for those who don’t like hearing detail, but I am a woman of detail. And for you to fully comprehend what I went through, I think it is a valid detail). After more than two hours of blood loss, I started to pass out. I called Paul and he found me in the bathroom leaning against the bathtub. When he called my name, I came to…only to find myself about to pass out again. Everything went dark but I didn’t become unconcuse this time. I was breathing hard and started to sweat profusely. Paul said I was completely white, including my lips. We knew this was bad. Paul became a machine. I told him to get me oranges from the kitchen. I am thankful I married a sprinter as he returned in record time. We knew I had to get to the hospital….and remember we are in Africa so ambulances are not the way to travel. It is much faster to get in your own car and go. We had to arrange for the kids so Paul ran down the street to our neighbors and dropped the boys there. Then he came back for me. We got to the hospital very quickly since we only live 5 minutes away. The doctors immediately put an IV in me and tried to get blood from the vein for a blood test- there was barely any. This is not a comforting thing, especially when it means you might need a blood transfusion and you are in Africa! Thankfully when they hooked me up to the IV, I started to get some color back to my face. The rest of the story consists of an evening of very low blood pressure, a D&C the next morning, and another day of low blood pressure – measuring 80/35! I had to stay two nights because my blood pressure was not going up. They finally released me when it was 90/50. I have been struggling with weakness since. Each day I have been feeling improvements but am still extremely weak.
All in all it has been a long week. My emotions have been on the back burner as I’ve been forced to focus on my physical health. Now I am in a place to face the emotions of our loss. My faithful Lord has already used willing vessels to minister to me and my family with providing meals, taking care of our boys, and sharing words of encouragement. Today, our AIM IS pastor, Dick, sent me a text on my phone saying he was praying for us in our time of sorrow. He ended it with Psalm 63:8. I immediately went to my Bible and opened it up to read this verse. To my surprise, I had underlined verse 8, and only verse 8, in Psalm 63 about a month ago when I was praying about this pregnancy. Psalm 63:8 says, “My soul clings to you; your right hand upholds me.” In my time here in Africa, the Lord has consistently pressed upon my heart the fact that His right hand upholds me so I need not fear. I am forever amazed at how He continues to reveal this truth to me – I see it in action. I see His hand upon my life and how He guides me to His great purpose. I think about how my sons are wanting to become independent of me, not holding onto my hand as much as when they were younger. They want to grow up and go their own way. I pray that I am dependent on the Lord and able to reach out, accepting His mighty hand. I pray that I will not grow up in the ways of the world but cling to My Lord’s guiding hand. Psalm 37:23 “If the Lord delights in a man’s way, He makes his steps firm; though he stumble, he will not fall, for the Lord upholds him with His hand.” (this was another scripture the Lord directed me to about a couple weeks ago…got to love His tender way of repeating His truth to a heart that needs it)