Saturday, April 27, 2013

A Complete Stranger's Words

The other day there was something heavy on our hearts.  We didn't sleep much. 

The night passed slowly as I lay awake most of it earnestly praying, every few minutes slipping on the light of my cell to read a few verses in my Bible, pondering the situation and going back to praying some more...

We had some errands to run first thing and had an hour sandwiched in to the early hours that we didn't have to be anywhere.   We went to sit and get a cup of coffee and talk for a bit.  Tucking ourselves into the corner in the very back we ordered our coffee.  

Liberty, Emma and I were all scrunched together talking softly, very engrossed in our conversation, when out of the blue a man suddenly stood in front of us.   I'd not even noticed him approaching.

Several thoughts went through my mind, after all it's not every day someone makes a point of coming to say something, especially when we were in an out-of-the-way place sipping our coffee and sitting in a foreign country where we know few compared to the millions who live here. 

He gently opened his mouth and spoke some of the kindest words I have probably ever heard.  He then said, "Are you Christians?"  We nodded.  He proceeded to give a very powerful prophetic word.

My eyes welled with tears.  A total stranger, in a developing country, in the back of a unfamiliar coffee shop speaking God's truths to our souls.  He would have no idea that I needed that very word from the Lord. 

As it turns out he had been sitting nearby watching us converse.  He felt he needed to come say something.   

When he finished, my soul was encouraged by the unbelievably timely, appropriate and powerful word he had spoken.  

When Dw woke up that morning I could not wait to tell him what the man had said.  He responded, "If you tried to find him again, you probably would be unable, he may have even been an angel."  True enough.  He may have been an angel.

Whether angel or not we may likely never know, but let's just say he was definitely speaking the truths of God's word and they ministered to our souls like nothing could have.   His words brought peace and refreshment, like water to a thirsty soul.

The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
    He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
    he refreshes my soul.  
Psalm 23:1,2

God is always faithful.

He keeps His promises.

If need be, He will use a complete stranger in a foreign country to 
step forward and speak truth into your life.

Oh how He loves you and I.

May you find encouragement today for your troubled hearts.  

He is always faithful.  

Surely God is my salvation;
    I will trust and not be afraid.
The Lord, the Lord himself, is my strength and my defense;
    he has become my salvation.
With joy you will draw water
    from the wells of salvation.
Isaiah 12: 2,3

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Thoughts From My Heart


The April 2013 GO Team had the privilege of going to the Nile 
last week.   Most of our teams end up there.
 It is always such an exhilarating sight for my soul, 
personally speaking.

There is something about knowing that the great prophet and 
leader of the Jewish nation, 
Moses,
once lay in a basket among the reeds
in the Nile River.

True enough, where we stand is thousands of mile from where Moses was lowered 
into the water, yet the powerful story of Moses
ultimate rescue is still felt thousands of years later.


The other day I stood staring at the water, 
 thinking and imagining
what it would have been like to be Moses' mom, 
Jochebed,
knowing that all little boys under two were supposed
to be killed?  

Defying orders, 
 Jochebed secretly hid Moses away until
she could hide him no longer and 
made a basket in which she slipped him, and
carefully placed the basket in the reeds of great Nile River.


Can you imagine the feelings that likely 
ran wild in Jochebed's heart and mind?

My heart races just thinking about it.

Yet, God had a significant plan
in that Moses was drawn out of his basket,
 his life spared,
and a miracle rescue followed!

Moses' own mother paid to nurse him while 
he grew among Egyptian royalty.

I can't help but believe that every single day
Jochebed would look down at her nursing baby and 
whisper over and over and over, 
"Thank you God for rescuing my son.  
Thank you for sparing His life.
Thank you for the amazing plan you surely must have for him.  
Thank you that I don't just get to watch him grow
from afar, but tenderly I snuggle and feed him 
from my own breasts that you filled for him.
You are an amazing God!  
You, alone, are worthy of all praise!"

I just have this feeling that even after Moses was grown, 
and leading the Jewish nation 
{and knowing that everyone knew God called Moses 'a friend of God'},
Jochebed still likely never stopped marveling at the
way God had spared Moses' life many, many, many years before.

Personally speaking, I parallel Moses' story 
with so many of my treasures 
and I would imagine many of you have similar stories...

The miracle health-related rescue.

The aging-out rescue.

The we-didn't-have-a-dime-when-we-started-the-adoption yet every penny came in -
in the nick o' time.

The government we wanted to adopt from said our family was too big, 
but God said, "I will move on their hearts for an exemption."

The "adoption guidelines" said we didn't make enough, 
but God said, "Really? Watch this."

The "agency" said 'you're single' and then came back 
and said, "We'll make an exception."

The "foreign government 'rule' that says 'if you've had cancer you can't'"
and the multiple children who now sit in your home,
evidence that God changes hearts of foreign governments. 

 I think of our Isaiah Samuel, 
whom the entire Chin*se government
said, "you can't have him" 
{after saying we could}
due to a mistake on our agency's part.

But it didn't matter what the government of Ch*na said,
because God in His miraculous plan,
moved every single mountain, valley, obstacle
and government official's heart
to reverse their decision, enabling Isaiah to come home to us.


I cannot look at our Elizabeth Mercy and not think of how 
God rescued her by one hour.

Just one hour.
  
Elizabeth, seemingly destined for a life without a family,
yet our powerful God orchestrated the situation
on her behalf and she will tell the world
for her entire life, about God's mighty rescue.


And then I think of our teeny-tiny Ruby Grace.
A treasured gem from the heart of God.
Although she lay in a obscure garden dying,
God had His protective,
sheltering hand on her.

The African Sun?


The fact that Ruby was only bones with skin on them.

The fact that her brain had had one infection after another.

The fact that there were over 12 places with water pooling in her
very compromised brain.

The fact that she was only six pounds and already a year old.

Yet, God preserved, protected and ultimately rescued her
{and she's thriving - she sure is}.

********

Yes, all those thoughts float through my head almost daily.

He rescues.

He preserves.

He saves.

He obliterates mountains.

He removes obstacles.

He changes hearts.

He provides.

He does it all, because His heart is for the orphan and
He will move on every single government agency,
every high-ranking official,
and any nay-sayer

so that He can show how He loves to put the lonely in families.
He loves to change history with His miracle-working abilities,
and He loves to build our faith.

So I don't know about you....

But is there a situation that has you fearful?

Is there a circumstance that has you scared to pieces?

Is there a mountain that needs moving?

Is there a miracle you desperately need?

He is more than able.

He is the God of Moses 
from thousands of years ago

and 

He is the same God today.

"You are the God who performs miracles; 
you display your power among the peoples."
Psalm 77:14

"The LORD would speak to Moses face to face, 
as one speaks to a friend."
Exodus 33:11

Just cry out to Him.
He is awake
and
He is listening.


Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Twins

The internet connection was out tonight but is back on..

Heading to bed, it's after midnight,
but I was so frustrated that the internet was not working as I 
wanted to update all who have been praying.

The twins are both still alive - 
please continue to pray!

Rejoicing that the twins are still alive
and that the wifi came on so I could tell you...

Nite-nite from Uganda ----
going to climb under my mosquito net.


I will sing of the LORD's great love forever;
 with my mouth I will make your faithfulness known through all generations.   
Psalm 89:1



Tuesday, April 23, 2013

One Little Street Boy

I wrote a post about a street boy and posted it to the
  International Voice of the Orphan blog,
but I would be remiss not to mention it here.

The story of one boy,
a team of people from different ministries,
all working together to minister to one precious little boy.

You can find his story here.

Because quite honestly friends, 

this little boy matters to God...

and he really must matter to us.

His story reminds me of this verse:

"The King will reply, 'Truly I tell you, 
whatever you did for one of the least 
of these brothers and sisters of mine, 
you did for me.'"  
Matthew 25:40 niv

Monday, April 22, 2013

The Streets

She said she was ten years old.  
With strained difficulty she had tried to get
to where we were handing out food.

As she struggled to walk, 
Emma looked toward the young girl's foot,
no wonder she was hobbling - her foot was completely mangled.
In fact it was hard to recognize that it was even her foot.

Her mom was with her.
They didn't speak English, but rather a tribal dialect. 

Quickly Emma looked around trying desperately 
to find a place where we could get her help.
As the Lord would have it, we were standing almost directly 
in front of a building that had a little tiny upstairs medical office.

Since their language presented a barrier,
Emma called an Ugandan friend who speaks this tribal dialect.

He was able to explain to the mom and daughter that we
merely wanted to get medical help for her mangled foot.
Ahhhh, now they understood what we were trying to do.
Thank you, Lord, for the interpretation of a trusted friend.

Once at the medical facility the doctor worked for a long, long time
to try to get the infection out of the deep wound.  He also explained that 
if she hadn't gotten help she could have actually quite possibly lose her foot. 
It turns out that she had had her foot run over as they begged.

One of our team, Laura, sat with her as the doctor worked on her foot.
No doubt, it was extremely painful.
She was so brave.

We sat out in the waiting room and waited and prayed.
This is ordinary life for the people of Kampala who
beg on the streets.
Their lives have such pain, both physical and emotional.
We ministered as best we could given the circumstances and
we found continued medical care for the days to come.
I think of that girl and I always 
think of an ordinary tube of Chap Stick.

To the person who has nothing, medical care is out of reach.
To the person on the streets with chapped lips, 
even Chap stick is out of reach.
When I realized that one day, many years ago, 
I asked the Lord to remind me never to take chap stick for granted.

It's so easy to take Chapstick for granted.  

How can we pretend we don't know?
How can we turn our backs?
Ignoring the needs, when we have the means to help.

"Lord continue to break our hearts with the things that break yours."

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Selfless Ladies + Servant Hearts = Rockin' GO Team






A young missionary called to serve the orphan and vulnerable of Uganda

add

three moms

each with

a teenage daughter

plus

two close friends from British Columbia, Canada.

Nine women rockin' Uganda, to the best of our ability....

ministering to the vulnerable, homeless, orphan, tribal families, special needs adults....

Yes, there were some scary moments.

Sprinkled generously with joyous praise.

Quite a few tears together.

All doused in powerful prayer times.

Some exuberant laughter tossed in for some flavor.

Deep friendships formed.

Hearts tender and open.

Life disclosed.

Memories made.

Tight bonds that will last a lifetime.

True confessions:  I prayed for two years for this team....and God brought together an amazing group of God-honoring ladies whose only desire was to please the Lord, serve Him, love the orphan and minister to the vulnerable.

They rocked it completely and I am so thankful to call them each friend:  Feona, Laura, Emma, Jody, Bee, Karoline, Emily, Liberty, Emma and myself.  {Lynne joined us for a bit as well.}

Uganda will never be the same because of this group of ladies....
all because a group of ordinary ladies said "Yes!"

The next GO Team is getting set for June 2013 with the possibility of two teams...

For more information click here:   International Voice of the Orphan.

Lord willing, there will be another GO Team trip added this fall as well.  

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Storms

We were just outside Emma's new home doing wash.

We hung it all across the lines and came into the house.

About 15 minutes later, this was the sky.

Storm clouds are rolling in and the wind has arrived.

At the same time, our hearts are heavy with the 'storms' around the 
world.  A terrorist attack on American soil and horrific loss.
A earthquake in China where so many babies are waiting.
A fertilizer plant explosion in Texas with much loss of life.

We have no control over any of it, yet it feels very weird to be 
so far away.  

I am thankful that Almighty God sees, knows and hears our 
cries.


The name of the LORD is a strong tower; 
The righteous runs into it and is safe.
Prov. 18:10 nasb  



Thursday, April 18, 2013

Little S...


We were more than relieved to find S still alive when 
we arrived to check in this morning.

Jody and I knew that it was only the prayers of God's people 
that had sustained
sweet S through the night.

We took off their clothes and put the twins against each other...
immediately the bigger S grasped the littler S's hand.

We gasped!  

Clearly it was saying, "I need you to survive with me."

We took the suggestion in the comments on the last post
 of bloggy friend you only live once
and asked the nurse if the twins could please swaddle together?

The nurse was very intrigued by this idea and soon 
we were showing the other mamas this concept.

They were all very willing.

Jody and I weighed them as well.

1.34 kilos {2.95 pounds}
 and 1.67 kilos  {3.68 pounds}

Thank you for your prayers.

They are working, but it's obvious that they are still needed.


Some standard items to compare the sizes...


Bee's iphone....

and a medicine dropper....

 


My wedding ring on Little S's foot....


The bigger S...at 1.67 kilos next to a card that is the size of a credit card....

We told these little treasures that they are 
actually famous because people around the world 
are praying for them, 
that we love them and no doubt, 
God has an amazing plan for their lives....

Please keep praying!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

An Itty-Bitty Request...


As with each team we bring to Uganda, we spend time at different types of ministries to 
expose each team member to different types of ministry here in Uganda.
Our team's path crossed a teenie-tiny newborn set of twins. 
We have been praying and loving on them.

They are so tiny and today we noticed that one is not doing well.
At. all.
Two years ago after loving on Elianah Treasure
{who passed away the very next day} I promised myself 
that I would advocate for care anytime I was even a little bit 
concerned about a tender treasure.

Today it was one of these little twins who drew such concern
from Jody and I that I went immediately to advocate for special care.


We spent time today, as a team, interceding for this life.
We are fervently praying that this little one {on the right} 
will make it through the night.

Please pray with us for S.

The weight when they arrived was 1.4 kilos and, clearly,
more weight has been lost.
The cheeks are more sunken then ever.

Pray with us, please.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Meet This Little Treasure

Today we had the privilege of going to Jjinja and 
spending the day with some of the most precious treasures
in the world.

One was a teeny-tiny girl who reminded me so much
of our Ruby-girl that I actually gasped when I saw her.

Isn't she so beautiful?

Her name is Irene.

I was able to hold her and snuggle her and love on her...
and so did others on the team.

Irene's already had surgery at the same hospital Ruby had surgery at.
She had a shunt put in and is doing well.

   including Laura, who couldn't get enough of her....
Doesn't she look like Ruby?  


Oh me.  

How God loves each little itty-bitty-oh-so-vulnerable in the world.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Sunday in Uganda

We've been without power two different days already so 
again I was unable to post this last night.

The GO team has had the privilege of staying at Emma's 
new home which she rented alone recently...
it's beautiful and huge and amazing and
no doubt, God is getting things ready
for the ministry He has called her to.

It's been such a blessing to be with just Emma, 
her friend, Lynne, who is here serving for a short time,
our team...so personal and intimate...
lasting friendships being built, 
common experiences, deep prayer times together as a team,
ministering on the streets, in the orphanages and in ministeries we love to serve at -
it just doesn't get better than that.

This GO team is a precious group of ladies whose
hearts are purely surrendered to only pleasing Christ.
It's a beautiful thing. 

We were able to worship yesterday at a church out in the countryside.

The pastor and his wife are both beautiful inside and out.
The church is the same denomination that Dw and I pastored for almost 20 years.
Which is super cool to me!

The pastor and his wife have a burden for the orphan and truly 
believe that the church is to lead the way in caring for them.

They have built their church {and others now as well}
with the building below and upstairs is an orphanage.

What a precious time as we toured the orphanage 
and met these treasures and heard their stories.



The road to church this morning was spectacularly 
gorgeous - out in the lush African jungle.  




Notice the little building in the grassy field.
It is the "dollhouse" of some of the orphans
which they play with all the time.
Exquisite to all of us who saw it up close.

More "homes" built by the children.....are they not so spectacular?

The pastor and his sweet wife {she's expecting their fourth}.
Don't their faces just exude Jesus?


A few of the treasures they care for:



Bee lovin' on these precious gifts...



Saturday, April 13, 2013

Greetings from Uganda

We have arrived - 
the flights were awesome.
It was beyond wonderful to hug our girl.
Emmy kept starting to cry she was so grateful 
that we were finally here.

The team is a group of precious ladies...
seven plus me and Emma...
The team has bonded tightly together and they all have 
such pure and tender hearts that have 
come to serve and bless the orphans and vulnerable of Uganda.


Meet Feona


The team brought suitcases loaded 
with supplies to bless the ministry Emma will 
be starting soon.

Check out the many, many many suitcases filled...
Emma is overjoyed...

Check out the sweet dollies Feona's mom, Marianne,
made and sent for the treasures here...



The team had the privilege of meeting James and his mama and 
siblings and auntie...his mama continued to thank us 
and Ruby's Friends {that would you all} 
 for providing the brain surgery for her little guy.


Thank you for the prayers...
please, please, please don't stop....

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Another Ruby Miracle

I really should be packing to leave tomorrow {eeeeek}
 but I just had to stop and share another Ruby miracle
 with you, our friends!

For real, this Ruby-girlfriend is astounding all who know her up close....

I tell Dw that I am the "Ruby-whisperer" since I am with her 24 hours a day and I can usually, by God's grace, understand what she is trying to tell me through her sounds, moves or body language.

No doubt, Ruby is very aware of what is going on around her and she is, 
by God's amazing power, going to show anyone who said, 
"She'll never do anything" just how big the God of the Universe really is.

Since Ruby loves to meet people, if anyone, anywhere, at anytime pays any attention to her,
 I will quickly say,

"Would you like to meet Ruby?
She's a miracle and she absolutely love meeting new friends."

Everyone {so far} has stopped when I've said that and met Ruby.

I feel like it is our little family's way of blessing the world by
Ruby's sweet personality and beautiful smile.

Of course, as soon as they stop, I start signing with Ruby's hand and explaining that we have a new friend to meet...and of course, this has happened many, many times, so she certainly is understanding the routine of it and now, each time she meets someone she squeals and wiggles and smiles from ear to ear.  

Clearly her way of saying, 

"I am so wiggly, giggly, tickled to meet you, my new friend."

Well after explaining who the new friend is and telling them Ruby's name, many will say, "Hi Ruby."  If they don't, I whisper, "Okay, now it's your turn to say, 'Hi Ruby'."  And they follow suit.

As soon as Ruby hears their voice she kicks into her, very perfected
"Ruby-wiggles-giggles-squeals-smiling-from-ear-to-ear-position."
And as many times as I've seen her do it, my heart just thrills.
Our Ruby-girl is such a treasure and God is certainly healing her through and through.

Well after the person says, "Hi Ruby".....I always pick up her hand and wave saying, "Hi So-N-So"....

So the other day, I noticed as I was introducing her to a very kind lady in a store we were in
 that Ruby picked her hand up herself and waving her hand around said, "Hiiiiiii"...."Hiiiiii".

I thought, "Wait a minute! You've never done that before!
I think you're waving and saying "hi" on your own."

Of course, I am a very enthusiastic Ruby-whisperer yet I don't want to jump the gun and think that there is something there that isn't.   If she's done it once, she will surely do it again.

*Giggle*

Enter Artemis - Ruby's dedicated and awesome physical therapist.

Today Artemis came for Ruby's therapy and brought along her boss.  {He was such a kind-hearted man and he love, love, loved Ruby!  He actually asked if we would be willing to allow Ruby to be on a morning TV show here in Phoenix?  To which I replied, "As long as I can give all credit to the Lord for His healing work in Ruby's life - we would love to!"  He smiled and responded, "Of course!"  Woot!  Woot!  He's setting it up for May sometime.}

Anyway, while they were here, Artemis was explaining that Ruby uses sign to meet
 people, etc, and the whole meeting people thing...which I had done when she met him a few minutes earlier.

Ruby was laying intently listening to Artemis and I going back and forth the whole time about her meeting people and suddenly, out of the blue, Ruby

raised her hand and started waving it back and forth saying,

"Hiiiiii......Hiiiiiiii......Hiiiiiiiii..."

Artemis stopped instantly and said, "Look at her! Look at her!!"

I started squealing with delight...

Yes, indeed, our treasure-girl Miss Ruby Grace 
{who medical professionals said "would never do anything
but be propped in a corner"} 
is showing the world that God's healing power
 is way bigger than any diagnosis because He is 
our 
Miracle-working, 
Mountain-moving, 
Awe-inspiring,
 Gasp-giving God....

She was, no doubt, following our conversation, knew doggone well what we were talking about and responded appropriately, interjecting her 'hiiii' while she waved!  How stinkin' awesome
is that?

So from Miss Ruby, 
"Hiiiiiiiii....Hiiiiii.....Hiiiiiii....
So happy to meet you all."

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Ga-Zoo-Nee

Many of you have wondered what family life at our home is like on a day to day basis...here's a little of an average Saturday with our large family....

This morning the boys stayed home {they cringe at the thought of yard sales, hanging with big brother is way more fun} with Graham while Dw chauffeured us around running errands, getting the veggies at Market On the Move and spending a fair amount of time at a Used Kids clothing sale while we sifted through an enormous amount of kids stuff {found just the clothes that I was looking for and everything was 1/2 off today!  Yippee Jesus!}


Since I was on the phone with a friend for a few minutes, Dw was able to walk over with the girls to get the vegetables...Dw told me later that Elizabeth saw the crates and said, "Dad!  Look!  Ga-zoo-nee!  Ga-zoo-nee! Mom can make ga-zoo-nee bread for us."   I giggled when Dw told me.   Yes, indeed, plenty of ga-zoo-nee {zucchini} for bread {and spaghetti sauce}.


While we were gone, Graham and the boys made a little car that is powered by the sun.  It is pretty stinkin' cool.  If we set it in the sun, the wheels turn like a lunatic gerbil on a wheel.

When we returned home Liberty made lunch, I sorted the new-to-us-clothes and started the wash going...while the kids folded and put away a few loads of laundry.

We were able to Face Time with Emma for a bit, which was super special.  We talked to Autumn who had just worked her first all nighter on her new job as a CNA and I texted with Abi about her adventures as a new nursing mom.

After lunch the Liberty, Eizabeth and Jubilee had a tea party while Nehemiah, Isaiah and Elijah swam in the pool.

The vegetables today at Market on the Move were exceptional.  I've been dehydrating tomatoes with sea salt and basil sprinkled on them over the last several weeks.....totally yum.

Anyone else dehydrate stuff?  I'm always up for some new recipes...any ideas?



Lastly this week-end we are rearranging some of the house.  We have decided to move the homeschooling from the dining room to the loft....which we think will work much better for our family.   Kind of excited about it actually.   I have been doing the homeschooling in the dining room, but admittedly it looks like a cyclone at least 90% of the time and since that's the first thing one sees when they open our front door - so not pretty.   Now we can confine the mountains of educational creativity to upstairs.  Sweet relief to all our eyes, I mean, how wonderful and perfect is that?

Speaking of homeschooling, I think I am about to finish up my 25th year.  I just did the math and figured out that I only have 12 more years to go till Elijah Mueller graduates and that means I'll have put in 37 years.  That's almost around the corner.  Ha!  And let's see, I'll be 66 when I finish as it looks now.  Wait!  66?  Seriously?  No way.  Impossible.  I must have added wrong.

Okay, so Math might not be my strong point, but anyway ya' spell it, I'll be 66 when Elijah Mueller graduates.  That 66 thing makes me actually want to vomit - so let's move along and think happy thoughts....

Happy thoughts include the fact that I'm leaving for Uganda on Wednesday - 4 days and counting.  Liberty's going with me and a team of some of the sweetest ladies on earth and I will get to hug that precious missionary daughter of ours.

Happy thoughts indeed!


Thursday, April 4, 2013

Finally! Two Pics For a Peek

So the deal was that Mimi was not allowed to post any pictures until Finley had met his baby brother.

According to Abi, Finn was totally enamored with his newest baby brother...

Stone Wolfer Moon Quisenberry
{Wolfer was Dw's mom's maiden name}




Isn't he precious?



He looks very much like his mama did when she was born 30 years ago.

Completely giddy to have this newest little treasure join the family.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Our Littlest GrandTreasure

Yesterday our cell phones were buzzing with updates and quips back and forth.

Miss Abigail, our oldest was in labor.

Finally!!

Such a time of sheer joy...

awaiting the arrival of the Saunders teeniest grand baby...

I'm not allowed to post a picture {yet!}, but he's here and he is gorgeous!

Rejoice with us...

4:58 am
7 lbs. 12 oz.

Momma and baby are both doing well.

And Mimi is waiting {admittedly not very patiently)  for permission to post a picture and his name
.

Soon, I pray.


Tuesday, April 2, 2013

It's Not Complicated. Just Stop For the One.

My prayer partner sent me this link by Heidi Baker.

It's powerful.

It's truth.

It's reality.

It's all about one.

Just one.

The masses can look overwhelming.

But He only asks us to stop for the one.

And Heidi is right, "It's not complicated.  Just stop for the one."


On a more personal note, those who have crafted, 
helped with or bought from 
been on our GO Teams, donated for Ruby's Friends, 
or served the orphans, vulnerable, 
widows, immigrants, or broken:  
thank you so much. 
Thank you for stopping for the one.


Together we will Be the Voice!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Memorial Box Monday: $10,000



Since mentioning last week that we are going to begin doing Memorial Box Monday on the first Monday of each month, I have been so excited.



Many of you are new to our Place Called Simplicity, so let me briefly explain.
In the Old Testament God told the Israelites, after a miraculous intervention on His part, to gather stones and place them in a strategic place where they could be seen for all.
Then, each time they passed them, to tell the story of God's faithfulness to their children, reminding them of God's provision, protection or providence.

This week's Memorial Box {Monday} story is one of my favorites.  It struck me as I was preparing to type this, that so many times I receive letters from people concerned about God providing for them.  This story will pump you up and remind you that God does indeed provide for His kids!

First though, I have to tell you the whole story.  For many years I prayed for a prayer partner.  I am so passionate about prayer.  I am convinced that God not only loves when we pray, but He also loves when we agree together in prayer with a partner.  

So many years ago I began to ask the Lord for a prayer partner.  I asked the Lord that she be someone that would come to me and ask me first.  I didn't want to pursue a prayer partner and make them feel like they "had to" accept the offer {cause I was the pastor's wife - sigh!!}.  I wanted someone who loved prayer as much as I do, believing in the power of prayer and that she would have to ask me first. 

For years I prayed that prayer. 

Nada.

Nothing.

I was pretty dumbfounded.  But my prayer remained firm.  

Then, a few years back I was mentoring a small group of young women at a coffee shop early, early one morning each week.  One of the young women was named Chelsea.  She was such a delight.  She passionately loved Christ.  She prayed with deep conviction.  And one day she asked me if I would consider being her prayer partner.  I was elated!  Finally, finally, finally, my prayers were answered.

That was just about 8 years ago.  And so once a week Chelsea and I began to meet to pray together.  We met at a local coffee shop at 6:15am.  In almost 5 years we've both overslept and missed our time together only once.  We love each other and we love praying together.  

Chelsea's husband's job took him out of state.  We were unable to keep up for a season, but then, as the Lord would graciously allow it, we began to pray together again, this time via Skype.

We have prayed through some tough seasons in each others life.  We have cried together on so many occasions....we have fasted together.....we have stood in faith together....we have texted in the middle of the night when needs were great....and most importantly - I know that I can tell Chels anything and with this girl? - Yup mums the word!!  Someone could shove matches under her finger nails and light them and she would not budge!  

Loyal.

So wait till you hear this amazing story from a few years ago....

Chelsea's husband is a contractor.  Work has been slow.  Actually almost a standstill.  
Chelsea and her husband were needing to sell their home.  Badly.  But they had to finish remodeling it to get it ready to sell.  One day we were meeting to pray and Chelsea was talking about needing to finish the house to sell it.   They needed the resources to finish the remodel....and there was no money in sight.  And of course, with the remodel not done, they couldn't put it on the market and not on the market, it wouldn't sell.

Like so many of you, the situation was desperate!!  

Hugely desperate!

So while Chelsea was telling me this request, I said to Chelsea, 
"How much exactly do you need to finish?" 

Without pausing she said, "$10,000.00"

Ten thousand?

Yup.

Ten thousand.

And they needed it right away!

God's word says we must ask in faith specifically. 

So we finished sharing our requests and bowed our heads to pray.  
We prayed with fervor.  
We prayed with expectancy.  
We prayed with passion.  
And we prayed for $10,000. exactly.

After our prayer time we headed our separate ways.  
Within about 2 hours, Chelsea's number came up on my cell. 

This was highly unusual...we had just parted ways....
I couldn't imagine what was up as I answered my phone...

On the other end it was her....yelping with joy...

And here's what she squealed...

"Guess what??  
 You are not gonna' believe this!! 

You.are.not!!

Guess what?  
The mailman came by not long after I got home from prayer.....
and 

he handed us an envelope...

and inside the envelope?

You are not gonna' believe this!

You.are.not!!

I opened it up and guess what?  There was a check inside!
It was from the IRS...

They said we overpaid them and guess how much it was for?

GUESS!?!!


Inside was a check for $10.000.00."

I was giddy as I listened to her.

Really?

Yes, really.

$10,000.00

Exactly what we had prayed for just hours before.  

Not weeks.  Not months.  

Hours. 

Chelsea and Pete were able to finish their home and shortly
thereafter, the  Lord allowed them to sell it!  

I still gasp as I think about this....$10,000?  
Only a couple of hours after we prayed!!

They had no idea that the IRS had done the math and yet it was true!

Only our Miracle-working, Mountain-moving, Awe-inspiring, 
Gasp-giving God could orchestrate all this...

And the amazing thing is that He has a miracle for you.  
He does.
Promise.

Do you have  need?

He is more than able.

No doubt, He doesn't always provide like He did that day for Chelsea,
but the point is:  He is faithful.  He will meet the need.  
Sometimes He uses the IRS and sometimes He uses ordinary people
like you and I to meet other's needs.  

And this story was the one I had to share today, because
at this moment,
I need God to show up in a huge way.
To provide for a situation that is deeply troubling.
That's why I choose to share this story today.
Because I need to remember how God met the need - exactly when it was needed.

If you don't have a prayer partner, ask God to provide one.  
Then get together and pray....and watch what He does!!

What about you?  What has God done for you? Please do share your Memorial Box story with us.  
Post your permalink below...The stories people post are total faith builders to all who read.