Deuteronomy 6:5-9

"You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

An excellent wife?

This summer has been crazy. We've had some serious emotionally draining, life changing things happen this summer, good and bad. In one week the girls will be living with us full time. In two weeks our school year officially begins. Needless to say, I've been extremely stressed. My mind has been in a million places. Okay, maybe not a million but at least a hundred. (Just ask my hubby) I have lists upon lists. I cross two things off and add four more.

One of the first and most important things I do each year before school begins is pray and organize our life. (At least on paper) Because of my overwhelming lists, I haven't been able to focus on one task completely. I stepped away from my regular Bible reading plan for that very reason. I've continued reading through Proverbs and then just done some keyword searches. I didn't want to keep reading through 2 Sam. and 1 Corinthians and not be able to fully focus and learn. I have found it refreshing to step back. God knows where I'm at in my life and this is allowing me to search the scriptures that minister to what I'm going through.

Today, July 31, brings me to Proverbs 31. The very popular Proverb, especially for women. In verses 10-31 we see a description of an excellent or worthy woman. I almost didn't read through it again thinking this might overwhelm me more. But trusting the Lord, I broke out my highlighter and pressed on. I am so thankful that the Words of God are living, active, and sharper than any two-edged sword. I love how the Lord ministers to my heart through this living Word.

I mentioned earlier that I haven't been able to focus on the overall organization of our life for the next year. It just seemed/seems overwhelming. However, Proverbs 31 really helped me this morning. I know this is my goal. In verse 10 the scriptures says, "An excellent wife, who can find?" There's grace! I know that I cannot be perfect or meet all the expectations of an excellent wife/woman, but with God I can press on! In the verses following there are several attributes of this excellent woman.

  • Her husband trusts her
  • Works with delight
  • Rises while it's still dark
  • Feeds her family
  • Uses her money wisely
  • She's physically strong
  • She works late and even into the night
  • She reaches outside her household and ministers to those around her
  • She makes sure her family is clothed well
  • Strength and dignity are her clothing
  • She smiles at the future
  • Speaks with wisdom
  • Teaches with kindness
  • Looks well to her own household
  • Is not lazy
Verses 30-31 are my favorite:
"Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised. Give her the product of her hands, and let her works praise her in the gates."

My goal for this year is to, "Fear the Lord." That in itself encompasses a lot. I am going to try, with His help, to love Him more, listen to Him more, obey Him more, walk with Him more closely, respect Him, and fear Him. I'm praying that like the scriptures say the products of my hands will then praise me. I am hopeful I will see the fruit of my labors. 

Friday, July 26, 2013

11 years...

Warning: Lot's of mushy, lovey, dovey stuff...

That's right 11 years ago I said, "I do" to my best friend. I was so smitten by him. I look back at our wedding video and laugh. I could not stop smiling. We looked so much younger. We had a lot to learn. (And still do)

I must share a little of our story. When I first met Martie, I was very driven. I was doing well in my career. I had Taylor, who was 2 at the time, and I was okay doing things by myself. However, I wanted to be married. I desired a relationship that would last. From the first time I saw Martie, I told my best friend, Brandy, that, "I was going to marry him." She of course laughed.

Then there was the first phone conversation. This is when I questioned my thoughts of marrying him. He informed me that he didn't want to be married, he never saw himself with kids, and he didn't really see life beyond 25. At least he was honest. That was about the only good thing that came from that conversation. Regardless, I was still very attracted to him and decided to pursue a relationship.

11 years and 8 children later, I am just as smitten. Our relationship in itself is proof there is a God. Looking back where we both were, and seeing where we are now is a miracle. I still love holding my husband's hand and looking into his eyes. There's so much more to it than on the day we were married. Our love is even stronger, it's grown deeper, and it's built on something that can not be destroyed.

Our rock, the foundation of our marriage is Jesus. It's only because of the grace which he has lavished upon us, that we can have a marriage as strong as ours. Martie and I surrendered our lives to Jesus before we were married. About 6 months before our wedding we really started living our faith out. We trusted in Jesus in a very different way. Being a Christ follower started changing the way we thought, the way we walked, our decisions... The day of our ceremony we vowed to love one another as Christ loves the church. Martie promised to love me in a way that mirrored the way Jesus loved me. I vowed to trust him, follow him, serve him. I took our vows very seriously then and I cherish them today. Our foundation has not changed. We know and cling to Him, the One who has all power and authority in this ever changing world.

Thank you for the best years of my life! Today and always, I honor you. I love you. Thank you for daily laying your life down for me. I truly praise God for this gift of marriage. You are my very best friend and you always make me laugh. You understand me and are patient. I promise to trust you in the decisions of life. Thank you for listening to me and taking all my concerns to heart. I pray that our love for the Lord and one another continues to grow and that He would use us greatly on this earth.
Faithfully and forever yours,

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Adoption update

I have a feeling I'm going to have to work backwards from this blog. There has been so much that I haven't been able to share. For the last month we have been providing respite care for 2 sweet girls. Ater meeting them and reading their case study, we told our social worker we wanted to pursue adoption.

Today, Tuesday, July 23 we met with the Adoption Comittee at DSS. We were interviewed for about an hour and a half. We were then walked out so they could decide if our family was the best fit for the girls. About 30 minutes later we got the call saying, "The girls will be placed in our home with the purpose of adoption." We'll meet this week and decide how to transistion them.

For now I get to finally share pictures!

Shyana (7)

My self proclaimed "Twins."

Our Elite Eight
Dasiyer (10)