Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The book!

David and I received the recordable book "twas the night before Christmas" as a gift. It was given to him to record the book for the girls and let them listen to it, to hear his voice.

You would think easy thing to do! No not in our case!

You see, this is David's last week of seeing the girls, holding the girls, putting the girls to bed, just being with the girls for a whole year.

How do you record a book with that on your mind?

It was emotional!! Neither one of us could get through the book without crying. It was hard. I was crying for David, and for the girls!

I cannot image going a whole year without seeing face to face, or hugging, or touching my babies. It is beyond my thoughts.!

But God gave us strenght!!
David was able to finish it in about 3 takes followed by many tears and prayers.

I gave them the book on sunday after David left, I know Christmas is over but they needed to hear his voice.

Hollyn would not put the book down, she hugs the book and loves it so much!

We listened to it once or twice then the book stopped working!! I was so upset for them. But after praying and putting the book down for a day, it started working again. I don't how it happen or what was wrong with it but thankfully it is working now.

Just today, Hollyn has listened to it 10 times. She will not put it down, plus she carries a 8 X 10 picture of David around with her also.

I was watching her this evening when while she was listening to the book for the umpteenth time. On the last page, David says 'remember I love you both always and forever'. She opened and listened to that page five times before closing the book. I asked her with if she was ok? she said yes, I asked her if she is sad? she said yes with tears in her eyes.

oh Lord, I pray for her and Corryn tonight, that they will be comforted by their heavenly Father who loves them so much, put a hedge of protection over them, dry their tears, love them.
Father, give me a love for another book, your Word, may I never leave it, may I never go anywhere with your Word in my heart, may I never put it down, may I love it like no other because I know I will not be able to make it through this year with You!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Just wanted to post some pictures!

I love these girls, I know it has only been 3 days since he left but I am wore out.
Mentally it is exhausting! So much to think about, to do, to plan, to keep up with!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Holding hands!

We love to hold hands.

I hold my girls hands every time we walk somewhere.

We hold hands when we pray.

David and I hold hands in the car.

These little girls fight over who will sit by Daddy, who will hold his hand when only one is available, who will be in his arms. They love their Daddy.

But today, they knew. Daddy is leaving for a long time. Hollyn esp. knew it is going to be a long year.

She would not let go, she would not leave his side, she would not let him out of her site.

She really held on.

So I hold on, hold on the One who will never let go!

Holding on to faith, to love, to hope, hope and a future.

Holding on to God! My God!

Psalm 143:5-6,8
I remember the days of long ago; I meditate on all your works and consider what your hands have done. I spread out my hands to you; my soul thirsts for you like a parched land.
Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Two phone calls!

I wanted to post this last night but just didn't have the energy!

Yesterday, we received two phone calls that changed the course of the day.

The first one was around noon, telling me to come pick up my sick child. She was so pitiful, asking will she be sick at Christmas, will grandma still come for Christmas if she is sick? Poor thing, really am praying she feels better very soon! But besides dealing with a sick child, I had leave work early, go to the grocery store when they are predicting snow, and pick up my other daughter. I felt so bad for Hollyn, all she wanted was to rest at home but after a couple of hours rest we had to leave. It was real hard going to the store in the rain/snow mix with two kids and one who is sick. I felt like a bad mommy. But we made and the good thing was we went to CVS which wasn't crowded at all. So this first call really changed how I was going to spend the afternoon and evening.

The second one phone call came during supper time. Making supper for the girls and I, my next door neighbor calls. She was making sure we were home because she wanted to drop something for us. Thinking she may have a little gift for the girls or Christmas lights, I met her at the door.(Jean and Fred are super nice, they watch out for us when we are not home. They have left things like floats for the pool, car seats, Christmas decorations for us.) So I was thinking it was something like that. But I was wrong, very WRONG.

Jean handed me a card with a letter saying, we want to make sure David gets home for Christmas and if his trip is already paid for use this gift card for the girls. My heart broke, tears welled up. We were standing out in the freezing rain, both of us just crying. I was crying tears of thanksgiving, tears of love, and tears of shame for how I have been feeling likely. I was so shocked! They chose us to give this gift to.

You see, my heart has been filled with worry and fear lately. My job is in danger and I don't know what will happen next year with it.

But God showed me with this gift He is still in control. All I need to do is just trust Him, to reach out, to not worry or be afraid. Why is it so hard to give that control to him, why is it so hard to let go, these are questions I have struggled with for years.

The lord is teaching me very gently I hope that He is all I need. He gave me a little glimpse of His goodness. What a mighty God we serve, I serve.

This second phone call will change how I am going to spend this next year of deployment and the rest of my life.

Forgive me for my fear, my worries, it is just sin and I am sorry it has allow to grow in my life. Give me a heart of hope, love, peace. A heart only you can give.

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but a spirit of power, love and a sound mind. 2 Tim. 1:7

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

A little girl's wish list!!

Today, Hollyn came home with her letter to Santa. She has been fixated on getting a piano ever since David showed her a Disney one. We will get her one but not the toy one nor a real one but one that teaches you the basis. She also loves stuffed animals and wants a web kins, and wants some tegs (things) to make tegs (things) which translate she wants more stuff for her easy bake oven.

But besides the list of 3 things, she put in her list something that shocked, overwhelmed, and surprised me. On line 7, hidden between wishing Santa a merry Christmas and telling him to have fun, she asked Santa to "cip my dady saf". To keep my daddy safe! It sometimes just breaks my heart that a 6 years old worries about the safety of her father.

But this post is not about whether you do santa or not. Or even about Santa.

It is about a little girl and her wish list!!!!

It is about a little girl who prays every night to God for her father. It is about a little girl who will spend the next 11 months of the next year away from her father. It is about a little girl who tells her mommy that 'the army sees more of her father than we do and it is not fair'. (I agree) It is about a little girl who smiles the biggest smile you have ever seen when she hears her fathers voice. It is about a little girl who hugs a phone when her father calls because she misses him so much.
It is about a little girl who loves her father more than anything that on her wish list she asks Santa to keep him safe.

It is also about a girl who prays every night to her heavenly Father to keep her girls and their father safe. It is about a girl who will spend the next 11 months of the next year and the rest of her life clinging to her heavenly Father who is always with her. It is about a girl who trusts her heavenly Father even when life is unfair. It is about a girl who smiles big when she hears her heavenly Father's voice. It is about a girl who will be hugged by her heavenly Father every time she calls on him. It is about a girl who will ask her heavenly Father to hug her girls and their father whenever they miss each other. It is about a girl who loves her girls' father more than anything, that on her wish list she is asking Jesus to keep him safe.

It is about a little girl and her wish list!!!!

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. Matthew 7:7

Saturday, December 12, 2009

I Believe!!

I have struggled all week with having some Christmas spirit. I have been tired, alone, discouraged, lazy, you name it I probably felt it the past 6 days. I have had it all but Christmas spirit. Even more so, my house has shown it, all we have done is the tree. No presents, no garland, no wreaths, no nativity. I justified it by saying I don't want to get a lot out because it will be me alone cleaning it up. I didn't even want to go to our ABF Christmas party. (But I did and am very glad I did)

But today was different.

I decided we would go out and have some fun. Get in the Christmas spirit. Big mistake. Went to the girls favorite place, a craft store, got - you guessed it, crafts. Came home, started the crafts, but honestly it didn't help. It's not working.
Why am I so blah???? What is going on with me?????

Maybe church will help. Off to church we go for the Christmas program. One child is crying she doesn't want to go because she wants to finish her craft, the other is mad she can't go to the nursery and play, she has to come with me to the program. I am exhausted by this time.!!! Maybe I shouldn't have done this.

But what a mighty God we serve. He showed up in a amazing way. This program was great. All the songs ministered to my soul. I had forgotten the real reason for the season. It is so hard to stay focus sometime.

My mind has been on what or who isn't here with me now vs WHO is here with me now.
I have been consumed with self pity.

Then I hear a song, "I Believe". Never heard this song before but it spoke to me, personally.

"I Believe, I Believe He came down just for me" WOW!!!!!
I believe He loves me!
I believe He cares!
I believe He is with me always!!!
I do believe He chose me!!
I do believe He came just for me!!!
I believe the true meaning of Christmas is Jesus!!!

It's not about the decorations, the music, the things we do, it is about my heart. What does my heart believe. It is about the relationship with my savior. It is about do I believe, and do I live like I believe!

I came home and decorated with my nativity set but even if my heart is not right, that would not give me Christmas spirit. I need to be right in my spirit with God to have Christmas Spirit. I need to be in worship with Him. My mind needs to be focus on Him and that He came just for me.

Thank you Lord.

Dear Lord,
Forgive me for forgetting the real reason for this season. Forgive me for not living like I believe. Forgive me for forgetting that I do believe.
Change this heart! Make it new! Fill it up with YOU.
In Jesus Name

I believe!!!!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Prayers tonight!

"I hope Hollyn's dad doesn't get killed in the war", this is a quote from one of Hollyn's classmate from school today. Me too I thought. But at that moment I biggest fear was I hope Hollyn is not worrying about that! I hope this has not even crossed her mind.

So my prayer tonight is keep their minds in perfect peace. My prayer is keep my mind in perfect peace also. Peace that passes all understanding!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

God's Plans

For I know the Plans I have for you, Declares the Lord; Plans for Hope and a Future. Jer. 29:11

This is one of my favorite verses, I have it written on my wall in my living room.

I make plans all the time and sometimes anything can change them causing me pain in my life like yesterday when I had to make an unplanned trip to the dentist. This was something I didn't want to do but it was necessary. Even though this was very painful (physically) I knew there would be pain relief when it was done and I was right.

God's Plans are Perfect! God has already made the plans and nothing can change His plans! I am where God wants me to be. I may not understand the plans He has for David and I, but I am so thankful I don't have to.

This year of deployment is certainly something we did not plan to do or want to do, but it is necessary.
There will be physical, emotional and spiritual pain! Or pain that just breaks your heart like yesterday when the girls are going to bed and they want their father to give them hugs and kisses and he is not here. But then there is pain relief when I tell them God is loving us and hugging and kissing us with his love as I give them extra hugs and kisses!
There is pain like when you feel alone, hurt and discouraged like no one cares but then there is pain relief when someone calls or writes to you telling you they care and are praying for you. Or a verse comes to your mind telling you "I am with you always" "I will be your strenght, Joanna" "I have the plans for you Joanna, Plans for Hope and a Future" !! This is to me such sweet pain relief!!! I hear you Lord! I'm trusting in Your Plans!

I know this year will hold many painful moments but I also know that this year God plans for me, for us, for the girls will hold many, many pain relief moments. Moments to savor and to love and be amazed by!

So I am trusting in God's plans - Plans for a Hope and a Future!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Lord is My Strength

"The Lord is MY Strength" -- this is what I repeated to myself over and over this past weekend.

David's unit was mobilized to active duty status to serve a year in Iraq. He reported to Greeneville Tn for duty and the unit left for training in Ms on sunday.

It truely was an awesome site to see. We arrived to the unit at 8:10 am and it was already packed. There were a sea of people everywhere. The armory was packed, the local schools had made posters (100's of them) of encouragement to show their support. The posters lined every wall in the armory. It was beautiful!!!!

The morning consisted of formation for the soldiers, then a little wait time allowing more families to say good bye. Then the last formation outside where it was about 30 degrees.
Tears started to fall, the girls were crying, I started to pray "The Lord is My Strenght"! Two weeks, we can make it, "The Lord is My Strenght".
Finally loading of the buses, each soldier went by slowly, one last hug and kiss for David and I. Then they rolled out. About 10 emergency vechiles, 10 harley davidsons with american flags lead the way followed by 3 buses loaded with troops, bringing up the rear were about a hundred cars of family members. Clapping, horns blaring, cheers, yelling, crying, music, you name it , you heard it. It was amazing, increbible, the support for these soldiers was uplifting. But I know in the quiet of the day, when no one is around, "I will lift up my eyes to heaven for "the Lord is My Strength."

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Homecoming and Daddy Little Girls!

Yesterday I picked David up at the air port. I was way early don't know if it was nerves or scared I would be late.
But once he got off the plane and walked through the door it was amazing. Just seeing his face and being able to hug and touch him was incredible. He wouldn't let go. and I do believe he was crying a little, What an awesome man who has emotions to express how much he loves me.
I can not put into words the how sweet it was to see the homecoming with the girls.

We picked up Corryn first, she smiled so big and ran into his arms telling him how much she missed him and then runs to her cubicle to get something for David. She had made cards for him. When we left, the girls normally run ahead of us but this time Corryn ran a little ahead STOPPED and Turned around and looked at David ( I think to make sure it wasn't a dream) and then ran back to him and grabbed his hand and walked with us.
Corryn is a big home body, she always wants to go home and never wants to go get Hollyn. But once we got in the car, she talked non stopped about we need to go get Hollyn so we are all together again.!! What a sweetie!!

At Hollyn school, we walked down the hill to the playground, she saw us, walk a little to us, then Stopped (could it be) then took off running yelling "Daddy, Daddy", they ran into each others arms, hugging and crying! Oh my! What a homecoming.!! I wish I had a camera, but my heart will alway hold this memory!

Neither girl could stop talking! I think they were pretty excited to have daddy home. We went to eat I asked for a big booth so both girls to sit by David. I sometimes feel like a fifth wheel but I really don't mind. I am glad he is home and we are together even if it is a short visit.
All night long, it was David and his too little girls, but I don't mind. They need him and he needs them, they are Daddy' Little Girls!!! and I wouldn't change anything about it.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

What's on my wall?

Daniel 5:5
In the same hour came forth fingers of a man's hand, and wrote over against the candlestick upon the plaster of the wall of the king's palace;
Daniel 5:27
You have been weighed on the scales and found wanting

This was from sunday's sermon and one of the questions pastor Sam asked was "what is written on your wall"
I have been thinking about this question for awhile ever since I got on FB. What do I want to post. A friend asked me soon after I got on FB what did I think of it and my reply was "I thought it would be more encouraging or edifing to God. Her response to me was "maybe that is something you can do" ouch! Do I really want to be told what is right. But she is right, If I want my wall to be a blessing then it is upto me to make it that. Not only that, I want others to know where I stand, so my question to myself is "what is on my wall?"
What do I want on my wall - I want my wall to be filled with encouragement, love, and praise for the King. I'm not speaking just about the physical wall of blogging or FB but my spiritual life also.
We all put up walls. They protect us, (we think), we don't want to be hurt or allow someone to get too close, or we want to be isolated. We don't want to share anything, maybe we are selfish, scared, hurt, the list could go on. But what is written on our/my wall is written in our/my heart. So I go deeper - what is written in my heart? Is it bitterness, anger, jeolousy, guilt, selfishness, greediness,fear, lack of faith, discouragement, etc. It is all of these and so much more and I will be weighed and found wanting.
I want a new heart, a new wall, Please Lord rewrite my wall
I struggle everyday to rewrite my wall, to change, to have a new heart but I am so thankful I have hope. I press forward, I run the race. I read my bible, I pray, I mediate on His word, I love others, I love God, and slowly my wall will be changed. It will be rewritten by The Savior who died for me, who saved me, who fills this heart up with His love, peace, joy, faith! I can't rewrite the wall only He can and His word. So So thankful!!! Praise the Lord!! He is worthy to be praised.
I know I will be weighed but with God and God alone I wont be found wanting!

Psalm 119:11 Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Mornings!! How I love them!

It has been a long weekend until this morning. There is alway something good, renewing about the mornings for me. I am a morning person. My hubby is not. But that is whole other post.
So last night, I was feeling low, discouraged. Hadn't heard from anyone about anything in a couple of days. I was feeling no one cares, oh me, having myself a pity party. But then my hubby called. That made it some better. But I was still down on myself too because the day did not go as I had planned. Daughter grumpy, I spent money I shouldn't have, my house is a wreck, I need to clean but didn't, I wanted pizza but had pb&j sandwich ( it just doesn't compare does it), I could go on with my whining but I will stop. So off to bed, and after 7 hrs of sleep, interrupted by my oldest, I wake up to a beautiful day.
Even if it were raining I would love the mornings. Ever since I was a kid, going to bed and waking up to a new day made everything better.
My mood is lifted, I look forward to the day, and what it may be like. A new day and new start. I love the anticipation of what it will bring!!!
Driving to church today, the sun is so bright, it warmed my heart! The weather is awesome. Cool in the mornings, beautiful fall colors. Christmas music playing (i know a little early). I just want to be able to praise God no matter what. I knew I failed last night. Could I do this for a whole year? Something has to change now. I need YOU now! Lord, stop my pitiful whines, my grumpiness. I want to be better at this, a better Christian. There is so much I should be thankful like everything. I don't want to be this person who whines, complains, argues, yells at her kids. I want to go through this deployment with grace. I want to be remember as someone who is praising God not complaining. Thank you lord it is a new day, a new start.
A few months ago in preparations of this deployment, my thoughts went to how I want to be in a year from now. I don't want to waste this opportunity to grow closer to God. What kind of person will I be. My thoughts went to 1 Cor 2:2 For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.
I don't care if anyone calls, my life is based on my relationship with Jesus not anyone else. I need HIM! I will get what I put into it. If I give HIM nothing, I get Nothing in return. I have to get to know Him. I failed at reading my bible this week , this past month. My mind is paying for it. I am so confused, so jumble, so clutter. Help me Lord. I obsess over silly things and not YOU. Forgive me for that. Forgive me for failing Lord, for my lack of faith, my self pity, my anger, my selfishness, my lack of time with YOU.
Thank you Lord for the mornings, for a new day. For Forgiveness. For starting over. I love you lord.

Friday, November 6, 2009

God showing up!

I really want this blog to be real, I am not a good writer but I know God is real in my life and I want to share it with everyone.
David left monday for training but God showed up. Granted He is always with me but He showed me how much He cares for the little things in my life.
God showed up when Corryn got sick on tuesday, we thought she had the flu. Took her to the doctor, she tested negative but he still thought she had the flu due to her symptoms. Came home gave her medicine for fever then by seven, she along with her sister fall asleep on the couch. I called in to work to keep her home thinking she is going to be sick for days. Well after many people praying, she woke up on wednesday, NO FEVER, playing, eating, and laughing. What A GREAT GOD we serve!!!! God showed up.!!!
God showed up when I got a card from church today saying they are praying for me. Awesome! It is such an encouragement to hear that. Now I need to be sending someone that too. Because I just don't want to receive but to give also.
God showed up when Hollyn after waking up 6 nights in a row with bad dreams on the seventh night she still woke up but NO BAD DREAMS!!! What an awesome God.!!!!
God showed up when friends called, FB, or emailed me saying they are praying for me.
How can I ever pay them back. Lord, teach me to pray, to be a true friend.
God showed up when I thought I lost twenty dollars, I prayed that whoever finds it will be blessed by it, God showed up by allowing me to find it and blessed me and my girls with gift. God showed up. I was reminded this week by someone, we can not out give God!!!
Thank you God for showing up.!!!

Monday, October 26, 2009

In Christ Alone

I started this blog to keep a record of my life as my husband serves our country. I also wanted a place for prayer requests and updates for David.

One of my favorite songs is "In Christ Alone" and I know I will not be able to make it thought this next year without Him. Just reading the words sums it up. 'He is my light, my strength, my song', awe what an awesome God we have. We all have hope, He is our hope, He is our strength, our love!!!

In Christ alone my hope is found,
He is my light, my strength, my song;
this Cornerstone, this solid Ground,
firm through the fiercest drought and storm.
What heights of love, what depths of peace,
when fears are stilled, when strivings cease!
My Comforter, my All in All,
here in the love of Christ I stand.

In Christ alone! who took on flesh
Fulness of God in helpless babe!
This gift of love and righteousness
Scorned by the ones he came to save:
Till on that cross as Jesus died,
The wrath of God was satisfied -
For every sin on Him was laid;
Here in the death of Christ I live.

There in the ground His body lay
Light of the world by darkness slain:
Then bursting forth in glorious Day
Up from the grave he rose again!
And as He stands in victory
Sin's curse has lost its grip on me,
For I am His and He is mine -
Bought with the precious blood of Christ.

No guilt in life, no fear in death,
This is the power of Christ in me;
From life's first cry to final breath.
Jesus commands my destiny.
No power of hell, no scheme of man,
Can ever pluck me from His hand;
Till He returns or calls me home,
Here in the power of Christ I'll stand.


On sunday oct 25th, David and I went forward at church to have a special time of prayer with our pastor. It was amazing, we took our girls up with us. I did this to show them what a body of christ does. How they pray and show love to one another. I really want God to be real in their lives this coming year.
Pastor Sam started off by saying 'thank you to David for serving his country, and when he did that the congregations stood up and clap. It was overwhelming and amazing to see. I was not expecting anything like that. What an awesome God we serve. After the prayer, some many people, many I don't know came by and just loved us, gave us hugs, and cards with phone numbers, offers to help. I was and am truly amazed by it all. What a mighty God we serve!!

Thursday, October 22, 2009