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."