7/9/13

Purify Me!

READ 1 John 3:1-3

1 John3:3 And everyone who has this hope fixed on Him purifies himself, just as He is pure. 

Our HOPE is purifying in Christ! Are we "working" or "doing" something to try and make ourselves holy? Christ has done all the work - and our HOPE is in this work that is already finished ...

THIS PURIFIES US :)
HOPE IN CHRIST PURIFIES US!

If our focus is on Him then we walk morally -
If our focus is on Him then we remain Holy -
If our focus is on Him our JOY is complete!

WE HAVE HOPE
IN CHRIST
BECAUSE WE ARE CHILDREN OF GOD!

And since He is pure, we are pure before God...

My Prayer: teach me, enlighten me, open my eyes. Give to me fresh revelation. Excite me about your work within us! Rule in my heart... Help me to relay Your Truth to others... Amen




4/2/13

remembering that "waiting child"

Every time I kiss my baby grandson, touch his face, tickle his feet, every time I'm reminded....

Every time I try to pass by but end up stopping to smile at him, then wait to see his returned joyous grin, every time I'm reminded...

Every time I kiss his hands and feet and sing him a silly song, and watch every other adult in this house do the same thing, every time I'm reminded...

My big baby girl NEVER had this. Nor do those still waiting in orphanages all over the world...

She wasn't kissed, or hugged or loved. She didn't have anyone blow raspberries in her neck, or tickle her belly. Was only touched when needed. Oh yes, she was fed-the institution she was in wasn't the worst. I'm sure a bottle was propped up in her mouth at feeding time then promptly taken away when or if she even had a chance to finish, schedules need to be followed at an orphanage or the work load escalates. I'm sure she had her diapers changed promptly at the same time each day, whether they needed it hours before or not. All babies get changed on the same schedule.

But there's emotional neglect, deprived of the love of a family. Lined up like cattle or sheep to be bathed, fed, whatever... disconnected. But to an orphan, this is normal. No child should go a lifetime without being told how much she is worth, how much she is love, how much she is cherished. How smart.

No child should ever need to go through life without a hug.


But God sees. He hears. He loves. Everything inside of me wants to proclaim this.

GOD LOVES HER. She IS His princess. His child. His chosen. He pulled her out of darkness and has shown her His light. And we have the privilege of watching her life unfold as it should have long before.

We get to watch as God fulfills his promise to "restore what the locust have eaten".

We Love our baby girl. We are growing together each day. With the good, as well as the difficult, we are learning to navigate together.

Her testimony is a mighty one. I know God has a mighty plan for this child! She has an amazing spirit that can only be explained as God's grace in her. Learning step by step.

Two years ago yesterday she walked out of the plane that brought her home, to be a forever family together.

It was probably the most difficult thing for all of us. But also the most rewarding to see her life blossom as it has.

But I still remember... there are so many others who need to come home as well. Oh Lord I pray that more open their hearts and home to a "waiting child".

2/3/13

Late Post on Christmas

We had one of the best Christmas' ever! I know this post is late, and I considered skipping it, but it was such a blessing that I wanted to write the highlights down... Last year (2011) I felt so stressed, and life was just.... ummm.... heavy. Just a really hectic year- so many adjustments for all. I was glad to get to 2012. And 2012 proved to be a turning point for our home and family.     And it ended Purrrrrrfect! LOL! With two new additions to our family - Maxine and Sophie
Amy, my oldest daughter came up from South Carolina with the boys for a visit during Christmas! It was a blessing to have them here to celebrate our traditions together! Awesome! My only regret was not having my son-in-law David with them. :(

Add caWe made Cookies this year all together, cut them out and baked them...The following day we iced them up and decorated them... so much fun. We all got in on it!ption





 



Look at this face! So proud!



One of the most precious times we have with family throughout the holidays each year is lighting our advent candles. We really don't do it any specific way. We just light a candle (any color) for each week of advant, pray, do devotions that teach about the coming of Jesus into the world to bring the light... And how we are anticipating the day of His return! We talk about the darkness and how Jesus is the light, salvation, the free gift of God, etc. And on our final week of Advent this year Amy and the Boys were able to join us... be still my heart!
That advent candle holder has been with us through about 15 years of lights... it even caught on fire one year haha! Maybe I post about that one day next year.
 
 
Christmas Eve... haha, in their festive jammies. I look at these kids and realize just how blessed we truly are !These three get along so well! A match made in heaven... for real! Arielle is so helpful with her brothers, and they love her to pieces.

The one thing that stands out so much in comparison to last year is the transformation of Arielle. She is a testimony of what love can do. She's beautiful, with a beautiful heart. Wants to serve. Struggling through (in a good struggle) learning about family, relationships, and most of all what it means to have a relationship with Jesus Christ. And she is learning fast. She's a busy girl too. Loves to be doing something all the time. A far cry from when she first came home. It's like the world has exploded with "LIFE" for her and she was happy to walk through the door opened. She is still learning and growing but aren't we all? :)

I told Brad and the kids to get a "fat" tree when they went tree shopping for the familyroom Christmas tree... and fat is what I got! WOW! it took up the familyroom! That'll teach me to leave the tree hunting up to the children. I do it every year :)

This is the night before Christmas....
 
 On Christmas morning we get up and the kids open some stocking gifts while we drag ourselves out of bed. Then we do a devotion. This year we did our devotion different. We usually read out of Luke, but this year we not only read the Christmas story, we acted it out. The kids had fun with it. Here is Joseph and Mary with the newborn Jesus.
 
After our devotion we cut the ribbon to open up Christmas :) I originally started the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony about 20+ years ago to keep my first batch of kiddies (Amy, Lauren and Bradley) from coming downstairs too early! It worked and it started a tradition. Now I get to do it with my grandbabies!
We were very organized this year as Santa placed the presents in order of each child, haha! I guess he had more time on his hands this year!
After opening presents we eat a pancake breakfast with fresh pancakes (moms recipe), real maple syrup, breakfast casserole, bacon, sausage... and other yummy things... and in addition Bradley, Melissa, and the Rebstocks came for breakfast, FUN! love love love!
 
Grandmom and PopPop came over soon after and also Lauren and Mike. The house was full :)

The porkchop had his first Christmas! Awwww, I remember Amy's first christmas.
Lauren and Mike
Bradley and Melissa
Grandmom, PopPop, and Micah
Porkchop aka Micah
Me and my hubby Brad Sr


It really was a blessed Christmas. I'm excited anticipating what this new year will Bring.


Maybe more additions to the family?  :) God is Good!