Thursday, April 4, 2013

When Life Looks A Lot Different Than You Thought

We just passed the four year mark of Rich's illness. Whenever an anniversary comes up I look back and try to figure out just how we got here.

How did we get here? How can you go from ministering for a congregation full time, running full tilt and then in a blink of the eye, to be in a chair or in a bed or couch unable to function like you want to? How could such an active ministry get shut down because it's servant leader can't function anymore to that level?

Where is God in the midst of all of this? What about all those dreams we had? Where have they gone? Our youngest son Michael graduates from high school in just a couple of months. We had children young so that we could be active and ready to jump to a new level of ministry when they were launched from the home.  All that time spent on schooling them, going to ball games will be done and then we could jump into the next level of ministry.

Why? Weren't men created so they can go out and kill something and bring it home? Don't worry, it's just an expression. God created men to to go out and make a living. Their jobs define who they are, right or wrong that is what happens. When a man is struck down at a  young age where does he go from there?

These anniversaries are painful but also good for me. I have to go back and mourn the loss of a dream once again and then look to the lessons I need to learn from here. "We are where we are" is Rich's line. At this point it doesn't matter how we got here, we just are. While we continue to pray for healing we understand that after four years it appears that God has said no. Could he change his mind and heal Rich? Absolutely. He has the power, no doubt but for now he chooses not to.

Thankfully Rich has started to write again. He has always been an excellent writer. Even when he was in the military he wrote and received recognition for his excellence in writing. Rich wrote lots of great articles for the bulletin that were filled with meaty thoughts. I have always loved reading what he writes so I am so pleased to share his blog that he started. You can find it at  

I started my training as a midwife. It takes me away from home but allows me to serve women who want support to give birth in their own homes. I am so blessed to witness the holiness of the birth process. I am going to take the experiences I am getting and go to Cap Haitian to MamaBaby Haiti which is a non profit free standing birth center for the women of the villages to come and have a safe birth. I want to be the hands and feet of Jesus and serve the needy. The death rate of babies and Mama's in Haiti are some of the highest in the world. I want to go and make a difference.

So where are we? We are trying to continue to serve the LORD exactly where we are. We know God has not abandoned us. He has allowed all this suffering for a reason and he just asks us to be faithful. Until our last breath we will serve the least of these and we will try to encourage those along the way. He has done so much for us in spite of the turn that was taken four years ago. In light of that we will be faithful till he calls us home!  

So at the start of year five I say, bring it on! If God is for us, who can be against us?

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the ground each morning Satan says, "Oh crud, she's up".


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