Thursday, November 23, 2006

A Lifetime of Thanks

It is Thanksgiving Day, and we are simply taking it easy this morning. We will not leave for my dad's house for a few more hours. So, I thought I would take a moment to try and put into words all that my heart is feeling today.

My first thanks must always be to my God. You brought me out the pit and set my feet on a Rock. Even when things have gone totally crazy this year, I may have been shaken but my Rock is my firm foundation.

As we have rehearsed so many times these past few weeks for the pageant, I am so moved at the sacrifice of your Son, Jesus. It was for me that He was sent. He thought of me by name as He hung on the cross dying. Jesus was separated from You, His Father, to be a sacrifice for my sin. Jesus was willing to do this for me. Yes, I know that He died for all mankind, but I think it is more personal than that. You see as individually not as a mass of people.

Many times I fail to say "thank you" to my husband. Thom, you are amazing. You have walked with me through seemingly impossible times. Times when I have wanted to give up on everyone and thing. You have remained strong. When our child, Morgan, passed away, I wanted to give up, but you remained strong that God would be our Provider. Eighteen other children have come into our lives. God has truly provided. When Mike decided that he needed more independence, you stood with me. We loved, prayed and hoped for him. We still do.

Since retiring a year and a half ago, we have seen God provide us with a new house and community. While the community still seems a bit peculiar, our home has become a refuge. This is where we belong at this time.
Thank you God for my son, Mike. I love him so much. He is on my mind daily. Please keep him safe. Bring him back to You and to us. We know that You brought Mike into our lives for a reason. Let him know that we truly love him.

God brought two miracles into my life this year. One is named Hazel.

Hazel, you are a beautiful four year old bundle of energy with long sandy blond hair and soft blue eyes. At first, it was hard to see the who you really were. The rage that filled your heart and mind was terrifying to me. The screaming made it hard to get close to you. So, God in His wisdom allowed you to become seriously ill in February. You were hospitalized with RSV and pneumonia. Your SPO2 level was 85%. Sleeping with you in an oxygen tent as you struggled for each breath allowed our hearts to be bound together. At times, I do not know where my heart ends and yours begins. We have bonded in a way that I cannot explain.

The second miracle was Emilly.

In January, at seventeen months of age, you were quiet withdrawn with eyes that had little to no life. Hazel was your everything. She had raised you since birth, and you needed her like the air you breathed. Ten months later, you are still shy around "new" people, but for those of us "old" people you are quiet the performer. Silliness comes easily and naturally for you. Cute does not begin to describe you. Since turning two, you have become much more independent. Your favorite words are "No", "I do it myself", and "I don't want to!" Amazing! For a child who would not complain about anything, you have matured immensely in these past few months.

Hazel and Emilly, I am so thankful for the joy and laughter you have brought to our home these past months. The ride has been bumpy at times, but we have done our best to maintain a smile on our face. I know that God is in our situation. He will not fail us. This next year could possibly be one of the hardest that we have ever had to face, but we serve a God who is alive and active. He is not quietly sitting on the sidelines of life watching what is happening to us. God is in control. Nothing surprises God. Let us trust Him in it all, and we will watch the amazing things that He will do. A year from now, I am believing that we will be celebrating together how God has delivered us from this situation.
This is only the beginning. I have many more things to be thankful for, but right now I must go get ready to leave for our celebration with my family.

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