Sunday, June 30, 2013

Hadn't Realized


Since Dw has been gone to Africa,
I've not had much opportunity to get exercise.

For me, personally speaking, exercise helps me stay 
pretty mellow. 

If I feel myself getting stressed, exercise *always* helps.
{Besides spending time with the Lord.}

With Liberty being the oldest and Ruby's seizures 
really can't go too far, 
so instead I've managed while Dw is away, 
to just ride around and around the blocks
surrounding our home.

Never more than 2 minutes from the house.

Having not ridden my bike for several days,
yesterday
I asked Liberty if she was okay with watching the kids so 
I could ride for a bit.

Venturing out my only thought was, 

"Wow, it's still pretty warm."

It was 7pm so it had to have cooled down from the 
122 degrees it was supposed to have been. 

Pedaling, pedaling and pedaling some more I began to 
wonder what the temperature really was.

Paused for a second to do a search and found 

it was still

115 

degrees. 

It made me laugh.

Guess I hadn't realized, after living in the mountains of Colorado
where it cools right down in the evenings,
that it's not quite the same here in the desert....

No wonder it was feeling a bit warm.

Saw a couple of my neighbors who were out hosing down 
their driveways.  Actually asked one if I paid them a
dollar would they be willing to turn their hose on me for a minute.

We laughed.

At one point I saw something out of the corner of my eye.
{Sorry the picture is so blurry.  
Riding by my phone did not cooperate well.}

Two bunnies sprawled on a neighbors lawn.

Did a double take.

I actually thought they might have both succumbed to the heat.

Nope.

They were both just sprawled out perfectly flat. 

Apparently it's the way a bunny keeps cool. 

Not to worry for Phoenicians - 
it's supposed to cool down by the end of week -

 to a high of only

110.

Downright shiverly,
 I suppose.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Progress


Before Dw and the June 2013 IVO GO Team left for Africa
Dw had been working a bit here and a bit there 
on the kitchen....

It's coming along beautifully...

We are trying three different colors on the doors...

The left is a bit lighter version of 
Summer White,
called 

Restful White

**

The center is the deepest tone of the three - 
kind of a creamy yellow tone 
called

Summer White

**


The far right is the most bright white
{with a teeny-tiny tad of a yellowy tinge that is 
not visible other than the guy at the paint store
 said it has yellow in it}

It's called

Westhighlander White

**

{They only make the little samples 
in a eggshell finish, so they look a tad dull.}



Can you tell a difference?
It's hard to capture the three colors accurately with the lighting 
in our kitchen and the camera I own.
I do know which one I like best.


Any thoughts?

Friday, June 28, 2013

A Beautiful Glimpse


I often wonder how moms ever survived when their children 
went off to serve in foreign countries in years past.
Before there was internet, cell phones Skype and Face time.

Having read dozens of missionary biographies over the years,
I always stood amazed at the courage of missionary's moms.
How grateful I am that I live in 2013, as opposed to 1813.

At the moment, over in Africa,  International Voice of the Orphan's 
Legacy Leadership Conference is in full swing.

Emma was able to speak to the pastors gathered about
the ministry God has called her to. 
 I guess she spoke through an interpreter
for about 20 minutes.
Personally, so very thankful for pictures through the internet
to be able to get a glimpse into it all.  


Graham has had several opportunities to lead worship.


Grateful for all of you for your generous donations  - the
construction of the dorm for House of Praise 
is in full swing.
Although the June 2013 GO team had several days without power, 
no doubt, they have had an authentic taste of life in Uganda
as they've served wholeheartedly.  

Crazy how much joy a picture can exude.

June 2013 GO Team

Although most of the GO Team is heading home 
our family contingency is staying on for awhile. 

God has done amazing things through the team and
we are blessed to have them serve the country and people we love so very much.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Dylan Redwine

Most of you will remember that in early March I did a blog post about young Dylan Redwine.

Dylan was missing from the area where we pastored in Colorado.  He'd been missing since a few days before Thanksgiving.  Dr. Phil had even done a 2 day interview about it all in late February.

Today it was announced that law enforcement had found the remains of Dylan's body in the Middle Mountain area.



Our hearts grieve at this tragic news.

Thank you to all who prayed for Dylan's safe return.
No doubt the family is comforted that so many cared and showed it.

We pray for peace in the midst of this horrific storm for all of Dylan's family and friends.  

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Finally!! It's Tonight

This silver haired mama is getting all set.
For special family to arrive, you can bet.

The sheets are changed,
The room, well, it's been rearranged.

Even the pantry has goodies not normally there,
This mama wants to be sure everyone knows she cares.

Mama's only desire to make all her treasures feel pampered,
Especially looking forward to the little feet that will scamper,

Through each room and swim in the pool...
Cause the rumor is the temps here in Phoenix are gonna' be cruel...

But not to worry, not one little bit,
There's ice cream in the freezer, skip worrying about clothes needin' to fit...

The agenda is set:  Making memories, swimming and loving is all we need
So we best head to the airport, cause their visit is gonna' be amazing - indeed.






Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Any Therapists Out There?

Although I've always had an appreciation for therapists -

physical, occupational, speech, sight, etc.,

I never really grasped all that they do on a regular basis with each of their clients.

Until Ruby.

And then every bit of past appreciation mounted into heaps of gratitude and joy...

Each of Ruby's three therapists have helped us navigate Ruby's needs along with her abilities and have given us a pile of ideas of things to help her achieve the next goals.

We have welcomed these three precious women into not only our home, but our lives.  And each of them have become a hero to us...as they have celebrated with us each of Ruby's new accomplishments.  

As a result of Ruby turning three, she is no longer eligible for any of these therapies as it sits right now.  
We are fervently asking the Lord for favor 
to be eligible for therapies under a 
different structure within the state of Arizona.  

But I could not let this "Therapy Season" slip past without honoring each of them.

I asked each at their last therapy session if it was okay to take pictures and post them.

They agreed.

I was so choked up and teary as each left after their final session.
They have become sweet friends of our family.

Most have heard me mention Artemis.
She's been with Ruby for a year as her physical therapist.
Artemis' visits to our home are always anticipated by each of us.
She's become a sweet friend to my heart as she has tenderly loved my precious baby girl.

Artemis' skill and expertise is amazing as she has shown us things to do that we never would have had a clue about.   She has worked diligently to bring Ruby to a place of moving.  She has introduced us to equipment we had never heard of or seen before {like a stander, which Ruby loves}.  Artemis is a.m.a.z.i.n.g.  

There is no doubt, hang around a little while and you will see that Ruby clearly loves her "friend" Artemis.

I was tickled to catch this picture of her peering up, with such an endearing look, at her friend.





In the picture below, Ruby's rockin' the sitting position and 
holding her head at center...
which was never dreamed possible by most  - 
but look at that girlfriend!


Then there's Deanna

Ruby's occupational therapist.


Ruby has loved Deanna's weekly visits - Deanna always had the funnest ideas!
Playing in her stander with stuff like foam soap or giant squishy balls.
Deanna worked with Ruby for the last six months...such a delightful young woman.
We will make our paths cross...cause if nothing else,
Deanna has to see the mountains that God is continually moving
for Ruby and the miracles that are being accomplished because of His great love.

More recently, Ruby has had a therapist from the Arizona Blind Association...
Marie came to work with Ruby's sight.






Marie has introduced us to all kinds of site aids to stimulate Ruby's vision
{which we are praying the Lord will provide}.   On a separate note,
Miss Marie has a close family member with similar challenges to our Ruby...
and it's obvious that Marie's tender care for Ruby is reflective of her
sweet love for her loved one.  

Such a comfort to our souls.

I realize that those of you who are therapists encounter all kinds of situations...and I have to say, that our therapists have been around when we've had some difficult times due to circumstances that were out of our control...and they have always been such precious encouragements to our family.

So today I honor the three therapists who have played such an important role in helping our little Ruby Grace:

Artemis
Deanna
Marie

They are heroes to our family and we will be forever grateful to the Lord for
allowing our paths to cross.  Their tender care for our daughter will never,
ever be forgotten or taken for granted.

To each of you who are therapists, I would love to have you 'introduce' yourself {if you wouldn't mind}....

And although you are not Ruby's therapist, on behalf of our family and the families you serve:

Thank you.

Thank you.

Thank you.

We pray that you are blessed a hundred fold for your dedication
 to helping families learn to overcome, 
work through or work in the midst of
 often times tremendous obstacles.   

You guys are amazing!!

Monday, June 24, 2013

{Miracles Continue} Ruby's Trying To....

Isn't it amazing how God keeps working?

I mean, think about it.

He could just leave us high and dry.

But He doesn't.

He moves.

He answers prayer.

He works.

He performs miracles.

He cares.

He comforts.

He rescues.

He strengthens.

He provides.

And yes, He heals.

He is intimately involved with our lives

every

single

day.

How can we even begin to fathom that?

The God of the Universe wants to be part of our every day life, every day.

For those who have been hanging around

our Place Called Simplicity

you all have watched, first hand, what God is doing with our little miracle-treasure

Ruby Grace.

The miracle of Ruby continues....

Our precious treasure who some medical professionals never
thought would be able to do anything?

Their interpretation:

Extremely medically fragile with most of her brain gone 
from infections and abuse.  
Multi-loculated hydrocephalus.  
Cerebral palsy.  
Seizures.
Don't waste your time.  
Prop her in a corner.  
She'll never do anything.

Enter 

Our 
Miracle-working, 
Mountain-moving, 
Awe-inspiring, 
Gasp-giving God.

That God...
whose plans trump man's ideas every time.

I am giddy beyond words and my eyes fill with tears, the joy of sharing this new video with you...

Ruby with her therapist Artemis, taken last week.


Yes, indeed, Miss Ruby has decided that she is going to crawl.

And she is working hard to do it!

All praise and honor and glory to Almighty God.

In our Memorial Box we are going to put a dollhouse baby in a crawling position.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Heroes and Cereal

Once upon a time a silver-haired mom knew a hero up close.

For real.

He was loyal and strong and so very courageous.

The mom and hero were very close and had spent years laughing together as the hero had grown.

As the days passed, the hero's life calling would eventually take him far away at times.  Very far.  So far no one even knew where he was.

Being that the mom loved her hero so much she lovingly would pack a box to send far, far away in hopes that he would know just how much she loved him.

Always praying for her hero, the mom would slowly gather things that she imagined her hero would love and tuck them gently into each box.

Dried fruit, pictures hand drawn by little treasures in awe of the hero, handwritten letters filled with stories of home and always homemade cookies.

One day the mom thought, "I will change this recipe for no-bake cookies.  The hero will think they are extra yummy."

So the mom put coconut oil in instead of peanut butter, and almond chunks for extra crunch.

The mom had everyone taste them and everyone said, "Yummmm.  They actually taste like an Almond Joy bar."

So off the box went to a far away place, in hopes it would eventually reach her hero.

Weeks passed.  The mom prayed all day long for her hero.  And yes, she prayed that the things she packed with care would soon reach him and encourage his soul.

Then out-of-the-blue, {as in yesterday} the mom was having an ordinary day and suddenly her cell phone rang.  

It was the craziest number ever contrived.



She gasped.

Hands shaking, she answered the call.

"Is it you?  Is it you?," she quizzed the caller.

Before the mom could even hear the voice on the other end, she hastily asked,

"Wait!!! Are you okay?"

The familiar hero voice answered, "No, Yes, I'm okay."

That split second of "No" before the "Yes, I'm okay" made for a split second of panic, but the mom started to laugh, "Don't say, "No"...I know you were saying, 'No, I'm okay'...but it made me almost pass out in an instant..."

They both laughed heartily.

Silly silver-haired momma.

In the midst of the moments of listening to her heroes voice, she remembered,

"Hey!  Did you get the first package yet?"

"Yes, I did.  But you know mom we {they open them all together, 
everyone shares - even the letters and pictures - everyone enjoys -
 unselfish heroes, they all are indeed} opened the box and said, 

'What the heck?' 

There was stuff all over everything.   Were those no-bake cookies you sent?   
I guess the Tupperware container you put the cookies in broke in
 transit and they were crumbled all over.  
We didn't even know what it was at first."

"Oh, honey, I'm so sorry son," said the mom to her hero.

"It was no big deal.  We just took everything out of the box, 
and put all the crumbs into a bunch of bowls, 
poured milk on it all and ate it like cereal
 It was delicious!" 

The silver-haired mom is still smiling.  

She heard her hero's voice.

He got the package.

The mom and the hero laughed together.

The hero and his hero friends ate the mangled and smashed cookies like cereal.

No doubt, she will smile happily for days and days.    

Friday, June 21, 2013

Strong Emotions

 Many of you who have been hanging around our 
Place Called Simplicity for a few years will remember
me mentioning Wolf Creek Pass.

It's a mountain pass that we would have to travel through
fairly often: heading anywhere North like Denver or 
Isaiah's casting appointments or East, like to our hometowns. 

Wolf Creek Pass is gorgeous beyond words. 

Here's a picture I took up on Wolf Creek a few years back.
Loving the landscape, I've taken tons of them.

And truly, one can't grasp the beauty without seeing it
for oneself.
It makes me gasp every time.
I love, love, love the mountains.



Autumn called the other day to ask me, 
"Have you heard about Wolf Creek?"  

I had not.  

{Autumn and Karl live about 1/2 hour south of Wolf Creek pass.}
She went on to tell me that there is a terrible fire raging up there in the
 thousands of acres of national forest.  
Autumn and Karl's home is not in any danger 
{unless the wind shifts}.

Personally speaking, probably as a result of losing our home
to a fire, I have very strong emotions when it comes to fires.
I hate them.  
They freak me out.
They are so powerful.
And in this case, so much of God's natural beauty destroyed.

West Wolf Creek Fire - Photo from Pike Hot Shot/ Twitter

The little town below of Del Norte is where we have stopped 
dozens and dozens of times...
I am in disbelief.  
We know the area very well.

 Laura McConnell, PIO Mountain View Fire Rescue

So many natural disasters these last few years.
Where, once upon a time, they were a rare thing.
Now it almost seems daily.

Below is a picture that Autumn took of the Wolf Creek fire
as she went into work last night.


If it crosses your mind, would you pray with me that the fires cease
{in Colorado and elsewhere}?
For protection for the firefighters, residents, etc.?

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Life is Short

Breakfast in the park for a change of pace....

Running in the grass while it's still cool...

Walking the trails for a long ways....



Chatting with the ducks who came a-callin'....

I only had one question for our quacky friends:
"Are you related to Uncle Si?  Cause I totally want to meet him."

Some days Isaiah's Arthrogryposis causes him pain,
so Lizzie is always up for giving him a piggy back ride. 


But the highlight of the day was breakin' the rules.

The crazy thing was that just yesterday I whispered to the Lord,
"Where is a splash pad?  
It would be so fun if we could find one for
free."  

And lo and behold, there it was.

We'd been to this park before, 
but never in splash pad season...
so I had completely forgotten...

Only thing was that

we had our clothes on.


But ya' know...

there are just some days we must break the 
"if-you-go-in-the-water-in-your-clothes-you-will-get-the-car -upholstery-all-wet-and-besides-we-have-errands-to-run-after-how-would-it-look-to-see-a-bunch-of-soaked-kids-walking-together" 
rule..

Cause, 

quite frankly, 

life is short...

and there are only so many opportunities 
to go to a {free} splash pad... 


And their expressions tell the story.....






Ruby and I even tried the splash pad,
but she said she actually liked the "no splash pads ever" rule.

haha.

Maybe someday she'll change her mind.

YOU Did It!

Yesterday I received an email from the couple who had
 generously offered the Matching Grant for
$12,500.

Their email was completely crazy.

They had been praying and felt the Lord wanted them
to up the amount by another $2,500.

WHAT?

Seriously?

Yes indeed -

they graciously and generously upped the ante and
now the challenge was for:

$15,000.00

****

Well on behalf of International Voice of the Orphan, I am overjoyed, elated and giddy 
to announce that you all have 
generously given 
and the challenge has been met!

You guys are amazing!
Gracious be...I just keep giggling...


**We now have $15,000 in donations,
 matched with the $15,000 in Matching Grant
for a grand total of $30,000  
enabling the GO team to accomplish
 all that God has called them to.**  



May Almighty God richly bless you each and every one!

Yippee Jesus to all of you who have contributed - 
no matter the size of your gift - 
you gave and God honors the giver...

"A generous person will prosper..."
Proverbs 11:25

Celebrate with us!! 
 The faithfulness of God is beyond comprehension.  

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Gettin' All "Fluffy" Over Here



"Bright eyes gladden the heart; 

Good news puts fat on the bones."
Proverbs 15:20

If good news puts fat on the bones, 
we are getting mighty fluffy with all this good news coming in!


Some of the treasures at House of Praise. 



Yesterday I put the call out to help build a home for House of Praise.
There was a matching grant given to IVO

The Lord knew the need and stirred a bunch of your hearts.

At this moment, with about 30 people contributing, we have raised just over $10,000.

The Matching Grant is for 12,500.

So adding the $10,000 to the Matching Grant - that is $20,000.

{To those who donated to House of Praise these last couple of days, check your inbox on Friday morning, Lord willing, there will be a special treat there!  Yay!}

Dw and the team were driving to Emma's home as I shared 
the news of the donations.

There was some serious joy going on in the van! 

The June 2013 GO Team cannot thank you enough. 
The children at House of Praise cannot thank you enough.  
We cannot thank you enough.

God is so good
and you guys are such a blessing.

PS  If, by chance, you are still wondering about donating, 
there is still $2,500 in matching grant money, thanks to those very generous
friends of the orphan and IVO.

Rejoice with us!

Those who give to the poor 
will lack 
nothing!
Proverbs 29:27   

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

A Yukky Story That Must Be Shared...

This story is a serious one.  
I have prayed for a couple of months about sharing it.

Because of the yukkiness of it, I just couldn't bring myself to.  
However, the circumstances are such that,

the time is now.  

I would ask that you kindly read it in it's entirety or 
feel free to skip it altogether.

At this moment, I am sitting in the comfort of my home, 
the kids are watching Despicable Me {one of my personal favorites}.  
We picnicked on the floor for lunch {my littles favorite thing to do}.  
Liberty made a yummy Mexican dish she found on Pinterest.
It wasn't an expensive nor was it a fancy meal, but it was yummy.

This morning my treasures and I were talking about life.  
One of them was sharing their heart about being an orphan
and their pre-family days.  
It was a serious discussion. 

And although their life was not-so-nice prior to coming home, 
they are home.

Safe.

Protected.

Loved.

Cared for.

Wanted.

Snuggled.

No longer lonely.

No longer wondering.

"What's wrong with me that I don't have a family?"

Such a sharp contrast to a situation on the other side
 of the world.

At this moment Dw, Graham, Savannah and the rest of the June 2013 GO Team 
are speeding their way toward Uganda.  
 They will land in a few hours.  

They have chosen to GO because of the needs they have either seen or heard about.

But this trip is different, on a level that is hard to describe.

Let me back up a speck.

A few years back Dw and I began  a ministry {501c3} called
 International Voice of the Orphan.  
We felt that God would use it be the voice of the orphaned 
and vulnerable children around the world.


Among many "arms", 
one of the most prominent is the our feeding program. 

Many of you have graciously given to it.
Shopping at Orphan Wares or donating something handmade
for others to buy,
provides food for Front Lines + feeding program. 

International Voice of the Orphan's Front Lines+ Feeding program feeds 
both the street orphans of Kampala and an orphanage where we have served.


Which brings me to the yukky part of the story....

A couple of months ago we received a Facebook message.  

It was from our "daughter" Praise who runs the orphanage, House of Praise, 
where we serve and where we feed the children there..  
Praise wrote that the day before, one of the little treasures in 
House of Praise had had an accident outside, his finger had been cut pretty badly
and they had wrapped it up.   

However, in the night a rat had come, smelling the blood,
 had gnawed on his finger and had eaten a good portion of it off.  


His finger now had the bone largely exposed.
He was taken to the hospital where they attempted to fix the finger.


Friends,

What are we doing?

We {me included} live in a beautiful home,
where laughter, joy, friendship,
food, commodities, perks and goodness flow freely.

Yet on the other side of the world,
a little boy in an orphanage has a good portion of his finger eaten off
by a rat in the night as he sleeps?

I can barely talk about it.

This just shouldn't be so.

We must do something!

Little ones who already feel rejected by life,
having a rat gnaw their finger off as they sleep?

We cannot sit back!

We must do more!

Trust me, I hate asking for anything.
But I promised the Lord I would spend the rest of my 
life being the Voice of the Orphan.

Which brings me to now....a few days ago 
we received a message from a friend of IVO.
They wondered if they could talk to Dw.

Dw called and spoke to the husband.

This generous couple had been praying and had 
wondered if we would be willing to take their very generous donation 
and use it for  

Matching Grants?

We were overjoyed.

The team that is speeding their way toward Uganda is going to work
on several projects.

One of their projects will be to begin building a rat free dorm for House of Praise.
They will build as much as we can afford.

That's where the matching grant comes in.

Trust me, I hate asking for anything.
But I promised the Lord I would spend the rest of my 
life being the Voice of the Orphan.

Every dollar donated will have 
a dollar matched 
from this generous donor.

As you look around your home,
open your fridge, peek in your pantry,
glance in your closet, gander into your garage... 
Is there a chance that you give a generous gift
to build this dorm for House of Praise?

The thought of rats running freely as the little ones sleep
 is something that is 
beyond our comprehension. 

These are the projects that the team will be doing,
{and gifts, no matter the project, will be donor matched}:

~ dorm for House of Praise
~ building a rabbit hutch for API
~ a secret project {that will be shared before too long}
~ a Legacy Pastor's Conference where local Ugandan pastors will be 
challenged and encouraged to live lives 
that leave a Legacy for future generations.

If there a chance you can help with one of these?

There are two places to donate:

IVO's website here.  

or

IVO's Facebook page has a donate button here.
{please like our page while you are there, 
it encourages the heart so much}

Or if you prefer to mail a check:

International Voice of the Orphan
3820 West Happy Valley Road
Suite141 - #510
Glendale, AZ 85310

As always, 
100% of the money donated to the projects will be used for the projects.

 Thank you, in advance for your gift ~
no matter how big or small, we commit to steward it well. 

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Time to Pray {and Fast}

So many needs.

So many monstrous seeming trials and troubles.

So many health concerns.

Some struggling with loneliness.

Others struggling with addictions.

Some having troubles in their relationships.

So many in need of a touch from Almighty God...

And in the midst of it all, there is one thing we can count on:

God is able.

Almighty God is able to move every single mountain,
obstacle,
blip on the radar,
trial
 or
 problem to accomplish His good plan.

Let's post our requests
in the comments below 
and pray for one another...

Contending that Almighty God meet needs,
move mountains,
heals broken bodies,
flatten hills,
span crevices,
throw a bridge in where there is only a cliff...

Whatever

However

Whenever...

He is definitely able.

Miss Ruby Turns 3

Yes, it's a miracle day for our family.

Dw said he couldn't think of a better day to coincide with Father's Day -
Miss Ruby Grace's 3rd birthday...

The princess started the day as any princess should begin her day -




breakfast in bed -

next to the best daddy in the world
{since it was Father's Day}!

Breakfast was her favorite:
oatmeal with a speck of maple syrup

Daddy and the rest of us tried a new recipe Savannah had found on Pinterest.
It bombed.
Like seriously bombed.  {haha}

It was not Savannah's fault, she's a great cook.  It was the recipe.
In fact,
Jubilee came downstairs and asked, "What that?"
Savannah told her it was breakfast.  She said, "Euuu. Stinks bad."
We laughed and laughed.
Note to self:  Lose the recipe.  Cereal would have been delicious. Stick with cereal.


Church was awesome and to make the day more festive
we tied a balloon to Ruby's stroller.

Lunch was another favorite for her:
Organic mixed vegetables with grains and flax seed

The rest of us had chicken and corn {with lime} 
on the grill.

It is hard to imagine that Ruby is already three.

Miss Ruby Grace has been up to some miracle stuff....
{more about that later}

All glory to our miracle-working,
mountain-moving, awe-inspiring, 
gasp-giving God... 

This little treasure of ours is a 
magnificent mountain of miracles, 
and clearly, 
the miracles are not over.
{giggle}

And if you feel like wishing our miracle girl a happy birthday,
I will read them all to her and tell her each of her friend's names.
I'll try to capture it on video and post it on Youtube, 
so you, too, can enjoy how she 
grins when she hears about her friends -
she gets soooo excited.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

"Momma"

For those who have been praying for Mattie, there is a pile of joyous news froms Mattie's hospital bed this morning

Mattie signed "momma" to his momma.

This is a monumental step and we are rejoicing like crazy over here in Phoenix.

Faithful God.

"Those who hope in Him, will not be disappointed."

Friday, June 14, 2013

4.3 Million People and He Chose Us

Last night we had one of the wildest things ever happen.

In fact, we are still shaking our heads and saying to each other,

"*That* was the crazy.  
Out of 4.3 million people, He chose us
What a privilege."

So the six youngest ones were tucked into bed as we sat down to wait for an
alarm system sales man to come to talk to us about his service.

His appointment was for 9pm, at the end of his very long day.
This young man came with such rave reviews on Yelp that I
was eager to meet him and hear about his business.

A few minutes after 9, he arrived.  He came in and sat down at the kitchen table
and just as quickly as he sat down the front door bell rang again.
I glanced at my cell phone and saw it was 9:09pm.

Hmmm.

That's weird.

Who would be at our door at 9:09pm?

I looked at Jim the salesman and Dw.  Both looked just as perplexed.
Dw went to the door, opened it and stepped outside.

Jim and I started to talk, but in the back of my mind I was wondering who was outside at this time of night chatting with Dw?  It could only be someone with a problem.

But who?

We hardly know our neighbors, basically are the new kid on the block, so if someone did have a problem, they'd likely go to a more familiar house.

About 5 minutes passed and I said,
"I think I'd better go see who it is with Dw, it's kind of concerning me."

Jim actually said, "Yeah, it's kind of weird" and followed me to the door.

I opened the door and found no one.  Not even Dw.

I called, "Dw?"

No response.

Okay, now I'm starting to get creeped out.

Then I kind of yelled, "DW?  DW!?  Are you there?"

Finally I heard his voice, "Yes, I'm here.  I'll be there in a minute."

Standing with the door open wondering what in the world was going on, suddenly
Dw came from behind where the cars were parked in the driveway, slowly walking with
a beautiful and frail little elderly woman.

She looked confused, frightened, maybe even terrified.

My mind was racing.

Where had this sweet little lady come from?

What was wrong?

Understanding what she was saying was difficult between her broken English
and very heavy accent.

Slowly piecing together the bits, we found that this sweet little Japanese lady
was trying to get home but had gotten lost and confused.
She had seen Jim approach our door and decided to follow him.

She stood in our foyer going through her purse for anything that would help us help her.
After she settled a bit, we invited her to come in and sit at the table with us.
Liberty got her some ice water.

Still not having a clue who she was or where she was from,
Graham went to her car and got her registration.

In the meantime we had called the police because maybe they even knew she was missing.

As the story unfolded we found that she had been visiting a friend this afternoon,
 and when she left her friend's home, had become confused,
turned around and had been wandering the streets in her car for hours and hours.

And now she was an hour from her home!

With her car registration, Graham hopped on his computer and searched and searched and searched until he found one of her son's home phone number {incredible in this day and age!}.

She was so scared and confused.

Over and over we reassured her that she was safe with us and
we would help her get home.

I showed her our treasures pictures, holding her hand, reassuring her over and over that she was safe and would be soon sleeping in her own bed.

I was able to show her Ruby on the little video monitor sleeping soundly and then took her to our bedroom and showed her our sweet baby girl, Ruby, sleeping in our bed.
She smiled, nodding when she saw Ruby.

We even were able to Skype in Emma and introduce her to K.
We told her about our family and she told us little pieces about hers.

As she settled and realized she was safe, K made us giggle as, over and over,
shaking her head she would say,

"No more drive again.  
He {her son} take keys away." 


Dw called her son and talked to himwhile a plan was beginning to be made to get her home.  Somewhere in there the police came {which scared the hooey out of K initially}.  Liberty was patting her arm and I was holding her hand, both of us constantly reassuring her she was safe and we would not allow anything bad to happen to her.

We had the joy of having K sit at our table for just about an hour and a half.
Eventually her son was able to come to pick her up.



As the events were drawing to a close, 
Jim, the alarm man {who is also a believer} said, 

"I will never, ever forget this call.
I feel like I have spent an evening in the
presence of God."  

It's true friends.  
When we are His hands and feet, 
allowing Him to use us for whatever He wants,
there is tender awe...

Out of 4.3 million people living in the metro Phoenix area,
{seriously, what are the odds, out of zillions of homes}
K would come to our door? 


We will likely shake our heads in 
wonderment for the rest of our lives. 


Such a beautiful privilege from His loving hand.
We thank Him for choosing us.  

*Anytime, anywhere, in any way.  
We're yours Lord.  
Please use us.*