We are leaving in 4 days to head back home. This will be the first Christmas that we get to go home since we moved. All tho I prayed and prayed that I wanted a baby before the next Christmas all year long I seem to be at peace with God that this year was not the year however I have the hope of the future that is full of hope that someday soon we will have a forever child in our arms to hold forever.
We have a current home study however we have to have another one done. I goal is to get our application turned in Tomorrow along with our questioner from the adoption agency. I feel horrible because it has taken me so long to get it done. I hate feeling like I am the one making this take longer. There are some very good reasons as to why it is taking me so long. I feel like I can only share such a small portion of my life and journey and I don't like that. I want to be able to share the whole journey. One reason is because I know that there is family that reads my blog which limits just a small portion and part two the foster children living with me have so much going on and things that I would love to share as I think that it is an important part of my journey. However due to them being foster children I can't share.
I wish everyone a very Marry and Happy Christmas....I don't know if I'll be able write again before Christmas but hopefully I can share will we are on our trip.
Here's a picture of three of us since I am unable to show you the other two. I really wish I could because they are so cute....
This is a really good book for anyone who is considering adoption and for anyone who really knows me I hate reading and writing. If it wasn't for the support of those in the blogging world I would not be writing this blog..Anyways I have read the book in 4 days with a very busy life of 2 several behavioral children and working 60 hours in a week. Some of the things we have already done and some of them are not possible for us at this time but it is very inspiring.
Hello God, I called
tonight To talk a little while I need a friend who'll listen To my
anxiety and trial.
You see, I can't quite make it Through a day just on my own... I need
your love to guide me, So I'll never feel alone.
I want to ask you
please to keep, My family safe and sound. Come and fill their lives with
confidence For whatever fate they're bound.
Give me faith, dear God, to face Each hour throughout the day, And not
to worry over things I can't change in any way.
I thank you God, for
being home And listening to my call, For giving me such good advice
When I stumble and fall.. !!!!!!! Your number, God, is the only one That answers every time.
I never get a busy signal, Never had to pay a dime. So thank you, God, for listening To my troubles and my
sorrow. Good night, God, I love You, too, And I'll call again tomorrow!
P.S. Please bless all my friends and family too.
Three years ago today you got to go home with the heavenly father. We miss you like crazy and I really wish you were here on earth with us but we know you are in very good hands up there. We can't wait to see you when we get to heaven and finally get to hold you in our arms for the first time. It will be better than I will ever imagine. We wish you a happy birthday day!!!! Love, Mom and Dad.
This time of the year is so tough with the lose of our first baby girl 3 years ago. Every year when I am sitting wrapping presents I wish I would be wrapping them for our precious girl and her siblings who are all up in heaven together. This year is extra hard for me. As of Christmas last year my wish was that this Christmas we would have a child of ours from an adoption in our arms or on the way. This year I do have 2 children in my home that are here to stay for a little longer before moving on to their forever family. My prayers were answered just not in the way that I thought. I should be joyful and happy that we have two children in our home in which we get to spend Christmas with and teaching them about the true meaning of Christmas. However it is just not the same knowing that they are not our forever children. We are not as far along with the adoption process as I would prefer to be at this time however I know that it will happen when the time is right in Gods eyes. However it is so hard to patiently wait another year without having a child of ours close by. I am so thankful that I have God so close by to help me through this hard time.
Other news lack of posting......
We are currently working on getting an application into a close by adoption agency that is accepting us at my age as this has been a big hurdle we have been trying to over come. Age isn't something that is easy to change and change fast. It is so hard hearing people tell you that we are unable to work with you at this time because of your age however when your turn ..... you are more than welcome to come back and work with us and we are looking forward to working with you then. The agency that we are currently talking to has an age requirement of 28 however we applied anyways. When the lady first starting talking with me she was asking me all kinds of phone interview questions to see if we meet their other requirements. We don't quite meet there marriage requirement but we are almost there. She first starting saying....we normally don't accept people under the age of 25. That would mean we would have another 1 year before we could start doing anything. At the end she said she was going to talk with the other lady in the office as I seemed very mature for my age being that we are already doing foster care. It took them two weeks with the holiday in all to get back with the answer. I was expecting to hear not at the time but when you are 25 we would be more than happy to work with you. However that is not what I heard. What I heard was music to my ears. We would love to work with you and your husband. Fill out the in depth application and as long as everything is clear will get started on the next step....YEAH!!!! Finally something to look forward too and there waiting period is less than six months. I am continuing to pray that by next years snow fall...I shouldn't say that it doesn't snow here....by Christmas next year that I will have a child that is ours forever in our hands or on its way.
Sorry I have been absent the last 2 weeks however the little one living with us had to go to the hospital 6 hours away from where we live. Two weeks ago Friday night we ended up in the hospital with her and they informed us that the hospitals close by were all full and had no openings within 24 hours so we would have to travel to Boise or Seattle. Never mind you it was 1 am and she would have to be directly transported there. Not even suppose to come home and get anything. I told them I was going to get my husband to come with. It might not snow here but once you leave the valley there is lots of it. So we left Saturday morning at 3:30 am for a 6 hour road trip one way on nice roads. It took way longer than that but we made it safely. We got to go back and get her last weekend. We are so glad that she is back but it was one of the best things for this little girl at this time. Were just hoping that things don't turn around and we have to take her back. God is definitely working on this little girl and it is so amazing watching her grow in faith she doesn't understand much at this time as she has been through a lot but she does understand him and learns more everyday.
Sorry for the long post....I'm hoping after the first of the year and when a lot of things will be changing that I will be able to get back to my blogging. I sure miss it which is crazy for me because I hate writing and I know its one of my weakness but I miss my blogging family and all of the support.
P.S.-Second Lupron injection completed this week. Yeah for no side effects from the first one...Lets hope the second one is the same.
I received my first injection of Lupron on Thursday the 3rd. I have been very lucky to have no side effects so far. I will have 6 injections total over a 6 month window. Even tho it is so hard to think about and take in for the next 6 months of our lives we are praying that we won't end up pregnant as it would not be a good place for a baby to grow with the current medications.
My Medication came in this box. I did not think it was going to be anywhere near this big of box. It was kinda scary before I opened the box to see the injection medication was actually small in size.
It is so wonderful to see God working in our lives over the last few weeks. We are hoping at the start of the year we will be able to take one huge step further in our adoptive journey that we have been longing to take for years. God is so powerful in the way he makes everything flow together at the right time.
An amazing story. We had to go to the ER with morning with one of our foster kids (this part not good). The nurse that had just came onto shift had told us after hour or so being there that being a foster parent has been on her heart for a long time and now her son is old enough and is ok with being a foster family. She told me that she just questions it with being a single parent. I told her even tho the reason we were there would not want you to be a foster parent. That all of the good things make it worth it beyond words. Its not easy and yes it is heart breaking to send them back home but that is why we have god in our lives. I don't even know if this lady believed in God but it just came out. (I'm not one that will talk about God with strangers as I am fearful to do so). I told her of stories of woman whom I know that are single foster and adoptive parents. At the end see asked me how to become a foster parent and where to sign up. Our area is in a big need for foster parents. I suggested to her that if she was iffy to sign up and do respite care first to see how it goes from there and if now wasn't the time that she could just keep her licence up until the time was right. Even tho I'm glad that I was not there because of what happened. I am so thankful that God used me and my testimony to give this lady the reassurance that she needed to get started and that if it is on her heart that God would help her with the right time. I think God put us there and then to change a persons life and families life forever.
Being a foster parent isn't easy but when a foster kids walks up to you and tells you that he asked God into his heart forever. It makes every sleepless night, sleepless week, heartbreaking tear, every emotional breakdown to God for the strength to continue and every bruise on my body worth it even more then we will every understand and know.
I have watched to movie Letters to God several times and have always been inspired to write a letter to God but never have. We watched it two weeks ago with the kids that our staying with us for the first time since they have been here. Later that day the little boy sat down and wrote a letter to God. He asked us how it really gets to God and we told him several different ways but I later realized that I never explained to him even tho it really never physically touches his hands that God knows what you put in his letter.
Last night at the dinner table the little boy started telling us that on the radio they were saying the prayer like they do in church that says that if you want to invite God into our heart you can say it with them. He then said that I said it with them. We asked him if he knew what it meant to ask God into your heart and he explained the whole meaning of it. I'm so happy for him however I believe that he really needs to see a miracle from God to make him fully believe and understand that God really does care about him after all of the things this poor little boy has had to go through.
This little boy and the movie has made me realize that I really need to do it and not just think about it.
I am so sorry beyond words for my lack of faith in you over the last several months. As my pain was physically getting worse and I was mentally tired from parenting these two wonderful children. I was letting my faith in you fall behind. I slowly spent less and less time in your word everyday. I slowly spent less and less time speaking with you and asking for you to help me along the way. Watching the movie Letter to God meant more to me this time then it ever has. Even time I watch it something different effects me. This time it was the part when the grandpa was explaining to the boy that he was a warrior to God and God has hand picked him to go through this journey. At that point it hit me hard inside. Because over the last months I have been pushing you away because I was not believing that it was really going to happen, the pain would never go away and at that point in my life I felt like we would never have a baby to hold being adoption or our own. But what I should have been doing was praising you and thanking you for hand picking me to come on this journey and if you didn't think I could do this journey with you, you would have never of picked me. God I have been chosen by you and now I am so grateful to be walking it with you. I regret losing faith in you and I'm sorry that you had to provide a miracle for me to wake up. You taking away all of my physical pain after the surgery opened my eyes that you are still with me. I have been in large amounts of pain since 2006 and for the first time I have been pain free. I can't thank you enough for taking away that pain. I still have hurt and have pain of everything we have gone thought and what is ahead but I have you to help me through this. Thank you for giving me light when I thought that the candle had burnt out and was never going to relight. God I am also sorry to all of the people whom read my blog that I had let down. God and I am sorry to you because I didn't show them your glory in that time. Instead I let you down and I did not hold onto your faith and show that I was living through you in such a deep time of need.
And for that I will be forever sorry and I will remember that no matter what you are always there for me. Not only do I need to praise you in the light. I need to praise you in the dark when the candle has burnt out and I do not since the light that is shining down from you.
With a heart full of Love, Hope and Faith in you,
I normally won't share this but I really feel horrible to everyone that was reading my blog because I had truly lost sight of him. I will be forever sorry for that. Because little did I know God was working stronger in my life then I had realize.
The post below is for children in my area however I am sure that there has been a rise in the number of children in foster care all over the world. Please Pray for all of the children.
Not everything that is
faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced. ~James
Please pray and spread this message below to other prayer
warriors, prayer groups and prayer chains you know. Tell them to email firstname.lastname@example.org
to receive Homes of Hope bi-weekly E-Prayer chain or urgent requests as need be
In the 8 counties Homes of Hope supports the average number of children placed
in foster care is 10 kids per month. In September the combined 8 counties
placed 35+ children into foster care!!!!! Last November on Orphan Sunday we had
104 children in care. Today we have 169!!! Clarkston has had to send 5+
kids to Sally's House in Spokane (30-day temporary care). Now, I hear Sally's
House is on the chopping block. Time is now for the Call to Action (James 1:27
and Matthew 19:13-15) for Christians to step up and help these children and the
families who foster and/or adopt them. Also, pray for the birth families. Oh,
my that's a hard one...There is so much despair and hopelessness that these
parents are taking it out on their children. They need Jesus. We as Christians
MUST quit living in our box of comfort and quit judging these parents and go to
them and bring them to the feet of Jesus. I am in NO way saying it is ok for
parents to hurt their kids!!! I am saying there is a message we have to tell
and obviously we are not doing a very good job with these rising numbers of
children coming into care. The redeeming story of Jesus Christ the true author
of Healing and Hope must be told. Right now those parents are kind of like a
captive audience as the state has their kids in care. No better time to come
along side them and share Jesus with them. The call to more foster/adopt parents
is imminent!!! However, they need to be prepared and equipped and supported as
they take on this difficult heart-wrenching journey. Pray Luke 14: 25-32 (Count
the Cost-be prepared) for Orphan Sunday. Please pray.
I feel so amazing after this surgery. I can't even remember the last time that I felt this good. I can't wait until I hit the six week mark so I can get back to my exercise routine. Due to the massive amount of endometriosis that was found they told me that I needed to go through treatment for it with the RE agreement. So starting possible next week I will start injections for the next 6 months that will put me through menopause to totally stop the function of the one ovary I have left. I will most like have to go through hormone therapy at the same time due to the side effects of the first treatment. The long term goal is first to keep the endometriosis from coming back and for the pain to stay away. The second goal would be to lose weight during that time frame and return to my 60 min a day exercise program to shed off 40lbs total. The extra bonus with this could be one functioning ovary that is healthy enough to produce eggs that are big enough to sustain life.
The doctor showed me pictures from my surgery. The doctor spent one hour trying to save the left ovary but he was unable to remove the cell wall at which point he decided it would be best to totally remove it. The doctor then spent the next hour and half removing the endometriosis that had attached itself to my bladder, intestines and kidneys. I have to say that God had his hand in this situation. Around the whole right ovary there was this big circle area in which there was no endometriosis to be found.
If you have been following my blog you probably remember that months ago I said that we were done with RE treatments. With this surgery that possibility could change. I really think God has his hand in this situation. For the last 2 years I have been asking for my ovary to be removed since this was the 4th surgery being performed with the last two less then a year apart. However everyone keep using my age as a reason to keep it. I have been miserable for the last 4 years with high levels of pain. I just wanted to feel life again without the pain wearing so hard on my body. My pain tolerance is very high. Even the doctor couldn't believe that I felt no amount of pain after this surgery. Sure my muscles get tired from being week but really no pain. Its amazing and I can only thank God for this.
Here is the pictures of our candles that we had lighted from 7 to 8 pm on Oct 15th to remember our little ones we had lost over the last 3 years.
Today we are remembering our 3 precious little ones that we are so dearly awaiting to meet when we get to heaven. We are so grateful every year that we get to share our story with people to help increase the awareness. I am so grateful that God has helped us through each and every situation and has taken our loses and turned them into joy. God has done amazing things in our life through our loses and each time I get to grow closer to God. I am praying for each and every person and family whom have a precious little one they are waiting to meet when they get to heaven.
October 15th, WORLDWIDE, Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day - Miscarriage, Stillbirth, SIDS
To promote support, education and awareness for those who are suffering or may know someone who has suffered a miscarriage, an ectopic pregnancy, a still birth, or the loss of an infant.
I am recovering well this time around. I have not taken any pain pills since Wednesday morning. I have my follow up appointment and will find out then exactly what he found. I never realized how much pain I was in until the pain was going. I am in less pain now and even right after surgery then the last few months. I am tired and I can tell when my body has had enough for awhile but really minor pain. Thank you all again for all of the prayers and support.
The surgery it's self went good however there was so much scare tissue and endometerosis that they did end up removing the whole left ovary. We are praying the results come back negative for cancer. Our other hope is that with the non functioning side out that the right side will now be able to function properly. I will update more when there is not so many drugs in my system. Thank You all for your thoughts and prayers,
Its kinda crazy (well not really) but I feel very disconnected from my support world. I really want to get back to it because I feel like everything is building up inside and I have nobody to talk to about it. I don't have a very supportive family and I would talk about it more however I know there is one or two who read this blog every once in awhile. Every time I want to or need to write I end up having to write an important email about the kids that are living with me. This current placement is very mentally and physically draining plus require nightly cares. I really need some prayers that these kids become connected to God and help them understand even tho bad things happen to them that he still loves them cares about them.
As for me I went in for my pre-surgical u/s to find that the cyst has gotten bigger and does in fact need to be removed. They wanted to do it this past Tuesday however that did not work out and had to be reschedule 3 times as to reasons that I am very unhappy with and really wish people would not be so self center. I went in for my u/s on Thursday and they wanted to do it that following Tuesday for a very good reason. By the u/s and labs that were done there is a likely hood that this cyst could be cancerous. Which would explain my contestant feeling of being sick. I feel like I have morning sickness and it is usually all night long. I have also lost 12 pounds over the last 2 weeks which no change in activity I have actually been more lazy due to the amount of pain I am in.
Surgery is scheduled for Oct 4th. They are doing one of two surgeries. I am waiting to hear an update from the doctor soon. They are either going to just remove the cyst or they are going to take the whole left ovary out in hopes of a decreased chance that the cyst grows back and in hopes that they right side will start working. When I first talked with the doctor about taking the left ovary he kept telling me on someone my age they won't take it out and I explain every time that I am not a normal 23 year old and the answer goes like this...At your age this is still hope that things will start working for you and you have a lot of years ahead of you for you to be able to carry a child.
I have turned the situation over to God and prayed to him to help the doctor understand and to help him to decided to do what is right. I have had 3 years of no ovary function at all. The right side creates follicles but nothing to a functional size even with meds. I have accepted the fact (even tho at times I still wish and pray) that I will not be able to carry my own child and that god has other plains for me. Even tho it is very hard to see this at this point in time because we are struggling to save money for our adoption with no outside support. I know that when that day comes when God place a baby in my arms that is mine to keep forever it will be more special than I can image and the timing could not be better. But when I'm in this deep dark tunnel with just a small twinkle of light at the end right now that keeps fading in and out it is so hard to keep handing it all over to god and trusting him that one day I will have a baby to hold in my arms.
Last Sunday in church our pastor talked about some very hard topics...He just came back from a sabbatical.....But he was a 100% right but it is so hard to say.......
He said fill in the blanks.....
Would I rather know God or have______________________________
His sample was.........
Would I rather know God or have my children follow God
For me....I'm crying as I type this
Would I rather know God or have_________________
I would rather know God then have a baby to hold in my arms forever.
Gods love is more powerful then any ones love and without God I would not be able to walk through this journey. Without his music I wouldn't make home from work with out shedding tears of pain, fear and anger. Without God nothing in this world would be the same. Without God I won't be me.
I'm still here. I've had a hard time staying positive all month so its been really hard for me to write. I will find out on the 6th when my surgery date is. My pain in out of control and just wearing me thin. Sorry for the lack of posting. Hoping to get back in the swing of things when the surgery is done. I truly miss all of your support and I am so thankful for everyone of you.
Thank you to everyone who has been praying for us. I have been doing a lot of praying and asking God for guidance on timing and patients to keep waiting. I have never been totally for sure of the agency we were looking at. I had that one little question hiding inside weather it was the right one for us or not. The money thing has also been a big thing on the fact of when we could adopt. I know dept down that when it is the right time that god would take that burden away. Over the last couple of weeks god has been changing things that I was not ready for.
I have been so consumed by our current foster placement that I have been lacking of the amount of time that I normally spend with him and have not been setting time aside to listen to him. I have only been listing to what I want to hear about this current placement. I have been looking for answers to weather or not these 2 our meant to be ours or not. At this point I am still unsure. There are times were I want to say yes and other times when I'm lead to say no. They have been pushing us for an answer. I think we could handle 1 of them but 2 of them at times is overwhelming for my husband. They both have major mental health issues and with there diagnosis they will have life long affects and because of my profession I don't know that we could take the risk of one of the things that could be the biggest issue. I hate to say no because then I feel like it shows the kids that no body really doesn't care and that everyone will give up on them. I don't want to be that for them. One of our other big question is how would they do with other children in the home as we could like to have more then just them in our family.
It's amazing how God answers prayer in ways that you would never think of. God has used other people in my life to answer them. My dad was working at a fair at the wine booth for the vineyard he works at. There was a couple that came up to the table with a baby of a different background. My dad had the courage to go up and ask them where they adopted their baby from and told them that his daughter (me) was looking for a place to adopt to. They talked with him but my dad didn't know where. I find it very amazing that God had my dad go up to a complete stranger to ask them such a sensitive question because that is not something my dad would normally do. Then over the last week this couple went to the vineyard that my dad worked at and gave him information on the agency.
Its amazing how God works because it is the perfect place for us. We are waiting to hear back form them on Monday. They have different programs that they get funding for which greatly lowers the cost. The cost of adoption also varies on your income. We can't wait to hear back from them so we can hopefully get started.
We have also been getting some small amounts of money and some of a bigger amounts from things that we have over paid on. At first I just though it was to help pay for the repair to my husbands truck however the money has paid for that and the rest is adding up in the savings for adoption. We got a call the other day that could not of helped out even more. I have been asking god if all of these extra checks are suppose to mean now is the time. We got a call on Thursday from the dealer ship that fixed the truck that said there was a billing error and we would be getting back half of what we paid them.
God is amazing and his timing is more perfect then we could ever imagine....
We are starting to raise money for our adoption. We our goal is $10,000 to fund raise over the next months or year to help us bring home our long awaited baby. At if any point we decide that this is not gods plans for us all the money we have fund raised will be donated to another family struggling to raise money for an adoption.
Our first up fundraiser......
We are selling gift cards to restaurant.com they sell on the website for $25.00 for a $50.00 gift card. We are selling them for $20.00 to help raise funds to bring home our baby. You can visit the website type in you zip and it will pull up restaurants in our area that you can get a gift card for. If anyone would like to purchase one just send us an email with how many and your address. Thank you to everyone for your support.
It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men. ~Frederick Douglass
Jeremiah 49:11 "But I will protect the orphans who remain among you. Your widows, too, can depend on me for help.” (NLT)
Court did not go as planned and we are further away from knowing anything. We go back in September so we will see what is going to happen at that point. At this point we believe that they are made for another family however we are willing to keep them until that time and we are still keeping our eyes open to the idea of adopting them.
Thank you for everyone who is praying for us we can't say thank you enough. Holly
I can finally show you a picture our very first little one that we were able to hold. However a short time later God decided that at that time that he was not meant to be ours forever. At this point we still don't understand why however we are so grateful that we have been able to keep in contact and get to visit him.
A lot of things having been changing in our life. Things are going ok and slowly improving with our current placement however we were suppose to have them until Dec however things are changing and we have some big decisions to be making in the near future. We have been praying and asking god to help us with the right timing to adopt. Adoption has been on our hearts for a long time and god has been leading us in this direction. However I don't always want what god want for me. I have always wanted to adopt at least one infant just to have the chance to go through all of those stages however I don't know that is gods plans for our first adoption. We have put the current adoption office that we were working with on hold when we got this placement. However I'm not sure of gods plans for us and am praying for guidance as what we are to do. If we are to add these 2 wonderful children to our family and to say no. I don't want to say no because I don't want to fail them like everyone else and I don't know if it is gods plan for them to stay with us or if they are meant for another family.
I sold my car and traded it in for a mini van before we found out about a possible adoption. I'll add a picture here later......
We have had an opportunity to visit with our first placement. He is 3 1/2 months now and getting cuter every time. However it is so hard to give him back every time. He was suppose to be ours forever at first however that was not gods plan and he took him away a short time later. I'm not sure the role god has intended for us in his and his family life but there is a reason for everything that has happened with this little one. We have been able to take him to church with us the last 2 weeks and his family has been asking questions about it which is amazing.
We also were lucky enough to have my family from South Dakota here over the last week. It was fun and went by way to fast..Wish they didn't have to leave....Here's some pictures. I'll post more later...Have to get the kids to bed.
Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all."
-- Dale Carnegie
I am having a very hard time hanging up the hook totally on my infertility treatments. Before we can continue we have to make a trip out to Seattle to visit the RE again. Which isn't the hardest part. My body doesn't handle the treatments very well and I don't think my body can handle more in depth treatments. So I am officially done for right now. I'm having a very hard time totally being done. Done testing, labs, ultrasounds and more testing. I never thought I would be sad to be done. The hardest thing for me is getting rid of my maternity clothes. I have 2 tubs that of them that I have been hanging on to since 2008 and have moved them 4 times and over 1,200 miles. I can't just get myself to get rid of them. To me getting rid of the clothes means I'm officially giving up.
I was really hoping that we wouldn't be done with treatments before we were really in depth working on an adoption. However that is not gods plan. In 08 I told the doctor just to take everything out and to this day still say the same thing due to the pain I have due to my dx. However that is not so easy anymore since we are running into many issues with the adoption process. When I was younger I always had a dream and a wish that I could be a Sergent mother for those who where unable to have children and now I am in need of someone. Its amazing how life really changes.
Our current children that are staying with us are really testing our patients which is very hard with everything I'm going through. We are having sever behavioral issues with one of the children. I want to help them and show them that not everyone will give up on them because I understand how that feels but I'm really struggling to keep going. There is just so much emotion going on between giving up on my dream of having children of my own and not being able to adopt at this time and foster children we sever behavioral issue is just getting me down.
For those who tell people just to adopt or be foster parents have never been through it before. From going to being able to do what you need to do to sitting in the time in room for 3 hours a night and not being able to go to the store unless my husband is home which is only 2 to 3 nights a week. It is not an easy thing.
Thank you to everyone who has been praying for us we really appreciate it.
Sorry for a sad/negative post
I will try to post more often however until the behaviors are under control I won't be able to do much posting.
I went in for my 14 day ultrasound and it was good news. Two hours after my ultrasound my nurse called and told me I had dominate follicle (25mm). Finally for the first time in 3 years I had 1 dominate follicle. However the next day I get another email saying that it was wrong. They said that the ultrasound tech measured a simple cyst which now has a home in the right ovary. That means that both ovaries are over taken by cysts. They had me go in for labs to make sure I didn't ovulate. The results showed no ovulation as of Wednesday and my progesterone number came back at 1.17. On Friday morning I had a positive OPK. I wrote the nurse back and told her. She said to trust the OPK and to cont with treatment. However if this treatment doesn't work I will have to go back out to Seattle and talk with the RE before we can start the next step. So now I'm in the 2 week wait with not even knowing if I ovulated or not.
On Tuesday we got a call form the state asking us to take a 6 and 8 year old on Friday. I never though my husband would say yes. When we got our licence we agreed to only take up to 6 because of me being so young. I was also suppose to have my 4 wisdom teeth pulled on Friday however they called me Thursday night and told me they were having issues with the insurance company and that I would have to pay the whole bill and they would repay me what the insurance paid them once they got things straightened out. However I told them I would have to cancel because I didn't have another $900 on top of the $1500. So it turned out good because I was wondering how well things were going to go with me coming out of surgery and getting 2 kids at the same time.
On Friday afternoon I became Nana Holly to 2 wonderful kids. I really wish I could show you pictures however I am unable to. Its amazing how many people tell me she looks just like me. As long as things work out between us and the kids they will be here until at least December. The cat is taking to the change fairly well considering the little 6 year old girl carries her around like a little baby. My cat is not little by all means, she is about half as tall as the girl. The dog on the other hand is not taking to the change well. We got him from the shelter less than a year ago and he gets scared very easy and 2 kids running around the house screaming and yelling is not his thing.
I will keep you updated as soon as I find something out. I'm praying that this treatment works and that we will not have to make another treat to Seattle just to see the RE. Its all in Gods hands and he has the perfect timing even tho it is so hard to wait.
We got picked as an adoptive family. After an hour and half talk with a wonderful lady form the adoption center we are on our way to hopefully a very wonderful thing. They center picks out the adoptive parents along with the birth mothers and the birth mother picks the adoptive family. We have to do some fundraising to give them the first set of money so we can get out information out there. They normally place within 4 months after paperwork is turned in. If anyone has good fundraising idea's or things they have done in the past we would love ideas.
We are praying that everything will work out. After this last week it is very hard to look forward and see that this will work in his timing. On Thursday last week what I thought was my cycle starting early turned out to be the start of a miscarriage. After my last ultrasound and with the follicles being so small the clinic didn't cont with testing so neither did I. However Thursday morning I was hurting pretty bad which is normal with my cycles so I decided I was going to work through it because I had to much to do. After 2 hours at work the pain multipiled fast. After 10 mins the pain was so intense I couldn't even walk. I soon realized what the pain was from the previous 2 miscarriages. Luckily one of the CNA's came down for something and heard me crying in the therapy kitchen and got me help right away. I had an ultrasound and blood work later that day to confirm what was happening. Thanks to my wonderful husband I was able to make it until they could get me into the doctors office. The RE decided that it would be best to continue with the fertility treatment that I had already started. Thanks to all of the prayers by others. My pain is tolerable and I was able to return to work however the emotional side is still affecting my life.
Thank you to all of you for your thoughts and prayers through all of these hard times.
Life has been crazy over the last few weeks. So lets back up in time. We had family that came out for a week. The original intent was for them to meet baby JL however due to god's plans for us that was unable to happen. My husbands family decided to come out anyways. We had a wonderful time together. God had a bigger plan for baby JL besides giving us continued hope that there is a child out there waiting for us. God used baby JL to change relationships in our lives that probably would not have been changed otherwise. God always has a bigger plan out there for us that we are not always able to see and somethings there is a very rough road to walk through with Him first. I am so thankful for him giving me a positive outlook in a very emotional and heart ripping situation.
Pictures for Hwy 12 (A drive we went on when my husband's parents were here)
Over the last couple of weeks we have went through two failed femara treatments. After the last treatment the RE decided to keep me on the same does of 5mg because it worked however we missed the time frame with the ultrasounds. Femara treatment #3 was the same as treatment #2 however the only difference was we were waiting for the cycle that was not coming. So on CD #54 the RE decided I could go ahead with the treatment without starting a new cycle. However after day 7 of meds mother nature decided that this treatment was a no. So 3 days later we started Femara treatment #4. Same does as last time. Day 14 ultrasound showed 5 follicles however the 2 biggest ones were only 10mm and the left ovary is where the cyst is located and has not changed which is a good thing. The RE is currently deciding if they are going to continue with the same med or change the course of meds at this point.
Other things that have been going on in my life....
We have been working on totally ripping up our whole front yard. We ripped up the whole yard by hand , laid landscaping bricks down, planted plants and moved 13 ton of rock.
The Front Yard (This is what it looked like when we bought our house last April)
Front Yard Before
After we ripped all the weeds out and put landscaping bricks in
After Flowers and Rock was put in
Yard is finally ready to have grass seed put in
The back yard with some work done. We put in the bricks last year because that's where the pool goes.
However our fence blow down last year during the storm and we have to fix it yet.
I talked my husband in to making the garden bigger. Last year it was even with the back of the shed.
Putting grass in the back yard is our project for next year.
Infertility is a heart-wrenching, faith-questioning, relationship-testing, life-altering experience. April 24th begins National Infertility Awareness Week. For those of you who are currently walking this journey with us or have walked this journey in the past understand the heart aches that never get healed. We are sending out extra prayers this week for all of you. If it wasn't for this journey my relationship with God would not be as strong as it is today!
Me and my hubby have been through 2 years of failed infertility treatment and have prayed to God over the last 2 years that he knows when the timing is right and whether or not it is his plan for us. Over the last 2 years God has led us to foster care and the foster to adopt program. Three weeks ago God blessed us with a little baby boy. Baby JL was coming to us as an adoptive placement. However God had other plans for this baby boy. God’s plans for him were not to be with us at all or this point. The future of Baby JL in our lives is up to God at this point. After 3 days God took baby JL and sent him home with this family. God has bigger plans for us that we can't always see. When baby JL left our family we prayed to God for answers as to why he took baby JL away. After weeks of prayers God has shown us that he had a much bigger plan beyond us with baby JL. Baby JL was the answer to other prayer and has changed our life beyond words. He will always have a place in our hearts and we will never forget him. We are beyond lucky that we can continue to see baby JL. This journey in our life is very emotional and heart reaching and without the faith in God this journey would be impossible. As we continue our journey through foster care, adoption and infertility treatments we only become stronger in our faith. Our hearts go out to all of you going through this journey with God. I consider myself to be lucky that God has chosen be to walk this journey with him and to walk a journey less traveled by other.
I'll post another post later with more information on the prayers that we answered by having Baby JL in our lives.
Help spread the word over the next week...Feel free to leave your story
On Saturday April 2nd, 2011 at 11:33am we welcomed baby JL into our family and on Monday April 4th, 2011 at 4:14pm we had to return baby JL back to him birth mom. It was the most wonderful 3 days of our lives but we need prayers. We got the call on Thursday afternoon that we would be getting this wonderful 4 day old baby. We praised god for finally answering our prayers after 2 1/2 years. But then on Monday at 3:54pm we got the call that we had to return him due to the judges ruling. We are so thankful that we got to spend 3 wonderful days with baby JL but we don't understand why we had to give him back so soon. Pleases pray for us to have the strength to make it through the next couple of days. We know that god has a plan for this little boy and we just pray that he stays safe.
Over the last couple of years I have been finding hope and inspiration to continue on this journey through listening to songs and actually thinking through what the song is saying. Over the last week I have needed a lot of inspiration to keep going on this journey. Over the last year this journey has been pushing my emotional strength. I thank God every day for the strength he has given to me to get through every day. My relationship grows with him everyday that I am on this amazing journey with him however some days I need some extra encouragement to continue on this journey and I believe that God is leading me to what I need because sometimes just listening to one song can change a very hard emotional day into one of the most amazing days because I realize all of God amazing power and get to see all the miracles he's created. Lately I have been having a hard time seeing all the pregnant women. I know that it is an amazing thing that God has been able to create all of this wonderful miracles for all of these people. I usually have a hard time because I wish beyond word, hopes and dreams that it would be my turn. Sometimes I just don't understand. Lately, I swear that everyone I see and know is pregnant which is wonderful and exciting but some have only been trying for a couple of months and here I have been trying for years. At those moments I think that I am a very horrible person for even thinking thoughts like that. Then God gives me a hit upside the head and makes me understand.
God has a perfect timing for everything and he has a plan. God's plan for me might not involve being a tummy and heart mommy for the same child. He's plan for me might be me being a amazing heart mommy for wonderful children out there who need my love. God has lead us down the road to foster care and hopefully to adoption. I have been trying to figure out weather or not to carry on down this road of infertility treatments. Stopping the treatments doesn't mean that my journey is anywhere near over. In fact it is going to lead me down another lane on the road with new emotion, struggles and pains. I have been praying and asking for guidance of what to do and where to go from here and I kinda feel stranded. I'm not sure because I feel like he is showing me to go in both directions and if that is his plan then he will give me the strength I need to cont down both road but I just feel so unsure of what his plan is.
This month is a month off of meds not by choice but because of another huge cyst. The cyst is not getting any smaller in fact its getting bigger. I can move the cyst by pushing on my stomach and you can visually see it. The pain is back to where it was only 7 months ago. I had a cyst before we started this new treatments of meds. I still have been doing the normal test at home without the meds and it just wasn't meant to be this month. I still have 10 to 15 days to go until the next ultrasound to find out what the cyst is up to. I some what feel that this Gods way of saying that this is the end of this journey but at the same time things have gotten held up on our adoption and foster care stuff so I am so lost beyond words.
Two months ago I would have been ready and was ready to start on the new road of this journey and to move forward but after last month giving me the first hope that something is possible because of God in the last 2 1/2 years makes me now feel that I'm not ready to get off. I tell myself you can't give up now. I'm just going to cont to pray and to ask God for the strength I need to get through each day and for guidance on this journey. It could all just be that right now is not God's time........His timing of things could never be more then beyond perfect.
So here is the song that I found that gave me hope earlier this week after a 10 hour day at work and a week and a half of neg OPKs.
Not a normal infertility song but this song has always been one of my favorites and over the last couple of days I cont to hear this song and it continually comes to my head so I took at a closer look at to what God was trying to show me.
I had to look deep into the words to find what I was looking for but there I found it. It talks about the fact that everything has a life a spirit and a name. To those of us going through this journey we learn to understand how amazing something is even after 1 day of meeting together at which point it becomes a living thing and we long to meet the little one here on earth or in heaven. It talks about people that think that are people are the ones who look and think like you. But the truth is all of those women that I look at and see might have a long journey behind them that I don't know about and that's why God is so amazing. It talks about hearing animals crying to the blue moon and to me is like asking if you listening to a women going through infertility crying out to God. Can those who have not walked the journey hear our deepest heart crying for the strength we need to carry on. It talks about coming and running the hidden pine trailing and finding amazing things along the way and not thinking about how much there worth. Its just like walking the journey of infertility. The trails are hidden to others who have not walked the journey and there are things that we find along the way that mean more to you than what they are worth to others. It talks about how the rivers, rainstorms and animals are family and it is so true even in the journey I am on. The rivers of tears that flow out of my eyes are my friends and my cat and dog are always here. In fact my cat will come and curl up on my lap when I'm crying and comforts me when there is no one else around.
Sorry for such a long post....I hope it was inspiring to those of you who are walking the same journey I am on. Praying and thinking about all of you. Thanks so much for all of your support, thoughts and prays. Holly
I'm been working on this post for a couple of days not quit sure what to write. My positivity is getting harder to stick to. In the last 2 days I have received $998 bill from the clinic and $287 bill from the company that reads the ultrasounds. Still waiting on my bill from the labs. That is only for 1 month of treatments. So I have figured out that one treatment of just Famara with no other meds is going to cost about $1500+. I have a feeling that in a couple of months we will be taking out another loan for medical bills.
Part of it is that this month without any treatments seems to be going on forever and I'm not even half way through. This month seems to be a test of my strength. I know the last few months have been testing my strength but this one just seems so much harder. I think that I am just getting impatient with waiting. I have been praying and praying for Gods strength to get me through and to give me the strength I need. The amount of pain I have been is so intense which is the same level that I was in last October when I ended up having surgery to remove the cyst. I keep telling myself I can do it...I can do it...but having to miss a day of work because of the pain doesn't make it any easier.
Things I have miss....
Actually kind of miss all the people at the doctors office. They have been so supportive. I go to just the regular doctors office for my ultrasounds and blood work since Seattle is about 5 hours from here. When I call or walk into the clinic they all know who I am and even the people I don't work with know who I am. I kinda miss all the test too...I feel like I have so much time its kinda wired.
Sorry for the randomness but I've been trying to put my thoughts together for a couple of day and its just not working. It has just been so hard to stay positive this month. Like tonight sitting at home by my self on a Friday night does not help. I would love to have kids running around screaming or crying. Its just getting hard because I know I am facing the facts of having to have everything removed this time. I have been ok with it in the past but after last month and actually ovulating for the first time in 2 1/2 years it made it so much harder to accept the fact. Before have I always told them its ok but that was because nothing had happened in 2 years but now that something has happened I'm kinda lost.
I have been listening to lots of songs to try to keep me going positive...so here is one of them...
Sorry for the lack of positivity in this post but I am working on a better one for tomorrow. Some time ago I started posting stories from the bible of women who went through infertility issue and then I stopped and never finished so my goal for the next 2 weeks is go finish that project.
Off the topic I am working on a marathon for 3 months (March, April, and May) I have a feeling that God planned the timing. It is an ultra marathon and for the next 3 months I have to walk a total of 150 miles minimum and I'm out to pass the minimum, my goal is 200 miles. My goal for tomorrow is 6 miles. Walking has always been away of coping for me and I feel that god has led me here for a reason. I use to walk 7 miles a day and I'm really hoping to get back to that. I have also been so frustrated because I worked so hard for 3 months to shed off the 15 pounds I needed to to start treatments and after lots of ups and downs, extreme pain and surgery. I finally got to where I needed to be and now after one months of treatments I have gained 12 pounds of that back. So I am fighting full force to get the 12 pounds back off in the month I have off.
Don't get me wrong because I would give everything in this world up for just the chance of getting pregnant just 1 more time. I have such a huge longing for just one more chance of having one child of my own to hold in my arms that I have and would given up so many of my favorite foods and drink. I have given up my life style I was living and moved far away from my family to make the money I would need make just the minimum payments that the hospital will take and still provide the services I need to continue the treatments.
Thank you to all of you out there who support me and pray for us. You have made a huge difference in my life and just by reading your blogs can turn a horrible day back to a wonderful day just by guiding me back to God faith and word. I can't say thank you enough....
With Love and Hope for all of you out there who are on this special journey down this road that we get to travel on with God. I pray for each and everyone of you that if you are still waiting for your miracle, like me, that god will bless us when the timing is right. Every morning I look at the sunrise and thank god for all the miracles that he is making for the day. And for those of you who are currently expecting a wonderful miracle from God I just pray that everything goes well and that you get to meet your wonderful miracle when its time. And for the ones who have a wonderful miracle or two..I just pray and thank God for giving you the strength to get to where he has guided you so far on your journey and pray that he cont to guide you on your journey with him.....Holly
Lord, I am worn from the weather, the raging waves
That beat against the life I awaken to each day.
I know You are good, and You will never forsake
But it is hard to see You working, in the waves great wake.
So to the Lord I will lift my voice, calling out in my time of need.
I cannot navigate this ship alone, so to You, O Lord, I give the lead.
Lord, hear my prayer, I cry out in distress,
The waves of the storm seem never to rest.
Yet I know You are the Master of the waves
And into Your hands I commit my life this day.
Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, and he brought them out of their distress. He stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea were hushed.
When I was thinking earlier about what I was going to right it was going to be nothing like I'm going to write now. I was going to say how hard it is especially on Thursday when I went in for my ultrasound every women besides 2 in their 60's were pregnant. Then I went in for my ultrasound and I was crying because I was in so much pain and the ultrasound for 45 minutes did not help at all. Then the horrible phone call today which said that the treatment is OFF due to the cyst enlargement. Go in again on the next cycle for baseline and if the cyst has not gotten smaller or stopped growing its surgery again to remove it. The pain is so bad that just sitting here is unbearable.
While I guess I kinda did write about it now but nothing like I was going to but instead I'm going to be (I should say try) positive about this which is so hard considering the amount of pain I am in right now however it is all in God's timing. I went to a seminar today called the connected child and I loved it. I have fallen out of love with my job and have lost my passion which I think is from everything not going well and I'm just wearing down. In the seminar they talked about how you choice the path of which something is going to be positive or negative. This adventure and journey I am on is something only selected people get to go through. Even tho this is one of the hardest journey's I have ever been on there are things that I have gained out of them that I never would of got to of done and won't be where I am at now in my life.
I have gain a relationship with God. I would have to say before all of this started my relationship was not the greatest and I did not give him the time he deserved. However I have changed lots of things in my life and now spend more time with him in a week then I did in a whole entire year. He has led me through all of this and keeps giving me hope that things can and will happen its just when the time is right in his book. I was looking at seeing all of those pregnant women as a horrible thing and why was he doing that to me after just finding out the night before that I wasn't pregnant. Now I realize that it is gods way a reminding me that miracles do happen and my baby just isn't ready yet. I have also gained blogging friendships with all of these wonderful and inspiring women and if it wasn't for this journey I would have never of met them. There are so many other things. I am because of the seminar God led me to today looking at the positives otherwise I would be sitting here crying my eyes out but instead I am sitting here thinking how lucky I am that God choice me to walk this journey with him.
Update...Sorry it took me so long but I have been sick and very busy. My progesterone level from last week Wednesday was 10.4 which means that I did ovulate (The first time in 2 1/2 years) but we must of missed it. So next month we are going to do everything earlier than normal. So now I'm just waiting. I thought I would be nice and schedule the ultrasound ahead of time so we did Day 3 so if it was the next day it would be ok but I guess since I was trying to be organized it decide not to work. They don't think I'll need meds to get it started since I did ovulate :) So the next treatment is going to be the same. Baseline ultrasound day 2 or 3 and Femara days 3-7. We praying that it works this next time.
For those of you who don't know we have been working on paperwork since Nov to become Foster/Adoptive parents and we are signing our paperwork tomorrow at 3 and then we just wait for the phone call from there. However for all those people out there who say just adopt it is not that easy. We are facing some very hard things. A lot of the agency's will not let you start the process or adopt a child well in the process of receiving fertility treatment. So are you not only faced with the fact that you are struggling will all of the things that go along with infertility you also have to stop treatments for the 2 years it takes to totally finalize most adoptions. Sadly that is not the worst part...Some or Most agencies require that if you become pregnant while in the process of adoption...the process is stopped and the child is removed from your home (what a horrible thing not just for the family but the child). For those of us who have been waiting so long to have a child and then to sit here and wonder what if I were to finally get pregnant due to God's amazing grace that if I were in the process of adoption that they would take the child away. So we are now facing the idea of weather or not we want to cont the treatments and hope for a miracle or to stop treatments and just wait for a child to be placed with us.
To break all those theory's out there that once you adopt you will end up pregnant. That's not true. If you do end up pregnant it is because of God and his wonderful miracle that you would end up pregnant and that is not why we are perusing adoption. We are headed that way because we feel that is the way that God is leading us and we are just praying that he cont to guide us in the right direction. Thankfully going through the state of Idaho they do not remove the children from our home or stop the adoption process because you end up pregnant. Going through the state has its ups and downs but we believe that god will lead us in the right direction. For more info on our journey through foster care and adoption. Contact me and I will add you to the blog due to it being blocked.
So confusing and a very emotional ride....Wednesday night the nurse called and said that the ultrasound confirmed that there was no change and that I did not respond. They were to be calling me Thursday to set up the meds for the next treatment and I was suppose to go get the new meds. However that's not quick what happened. They called Thursday afternoon to tell me that the RE looked at again the u/s again and is thinking that we missed the surge and that it might of worked or it still could not of worked to. Nothing like an emotional ride but here is the other half. After the Friday u/s on day 12 they called me Monday and said it didn't work and that I could go back for an ultrasound which was Wednesday or just wait for it to come. However knowing that it doesn't come on its own I opted to pay the extra $300 to just do the u/s so we could just get started on the next cycle. So I was a bad waiting mother to be and skipped the things I was suppose to do because I was just exhausted and just wanted to get the extra sleep I've been needing. The worst part was Tuesday there was a possible pos. OPK but it wasn't as dark but it was almost there and the closet it has ever been but after they confirmed Wednesday night it did work I just gave up. Then we I got that call on Thursday that was not what I was expecting I starting getting mad at myself for skipping needles to say I will never do that again but its hard when it is such an emotional ride. I have to go in for labs on Wednesday to see what happened. I'll keep you updated.
U/S result as the same from last week which is a good thing and a bad thing. Good thing is that my cyst is not growing bad thing is another month a failed meds. They are going to contact me tomorrow with my new plan and send the meds over so we can get started on the next cycle.
Femara Treatment #1 is a failure...Yes that dreaded call from the RE with the ultrasound results after a bad emotional weekend. It was the perfect way to start off my week. Only 8 and all pretty small...I have to go back in for an ultrasound tomorrow to confirm it didn't work then off to the next dose but only higher this time. Side effects have been 12lbs of weight gain, more abnormal pain then normal and never ending hunger part of the day and then the other half of the day I'm so full I don't want to eat anything. I'll try to update tomorrow after I find something out.
I Don't think that there is one thing in this world that I would not give up to for one more chance. I know that it is all in God's hand it is all up to him and I know that he has a plan I just have to wait but it is so hard month after month of nothing. You just struggle inside and its so hard to understand why.
I am done with the Femara as of last night. I had minimal side effects which were weight gain (9lbs not minimal but I can deal with it) and dizziness. My ultrasound is scheduled for Friday. Keeping my fingers crossed and praying my soul out that it works.
ITS A GO :)
After my long awaited u/s that was 45 minutes late....and more on and on...Lets just say my bladder was in more than word can say pain for almost 2 hours. They came out and told me I had to do blood work...I knew then that it was over and not a go because that meant that the cyst is larger then 15mm. We'll it was bigger and I really thought that when she called me it would be a no go but she told me that they decided it was a go...I said what she said its a go....YAYAYAYA!!!!!! Praying that it works....My next ultrasound is the 11th. I start Femara today.
Ultrasound is scheduled for 2pm on Wednesday and Possibly labs...I'm hoping not because that means the cyst is to big to start the meds....I'm praying for no cyst bigger then 10mm otherwise the meds are put off. I'll let you know :)
Sorry for my lack of posting for the last couple of week but the last 3 weeks have been crazy with having to take some classes.
Nothing has happened with the meds yet...or I should say they're not working and not doing what their suppose to do. I have to wait until Tuesday before we can try the med again to get things going so I can take the Famara. I'll keep you updated. So its so short but I've gotta get to class.
Towards the end of last year I needed a boost in faith and needed some direction so I decided to start reading a devotion book start the 1st. I must say I actually have followed through except the last couple of days because I have been so sick. These quick devotionals have helped me believe and redirect me when I am having a rough day. So I'm going to attempt to put them up everyday for anyone less out there who needs a boost on bad days. I'll start from the beginning....
Jan 1st God Is Everywhere If I ride the wings of the morning, if I dwell by the farthest oceans, even there Your hand will guide me, and Your strength will support me. Psalm 139:9-10 If we could actually do what the psalmist suggests and ride the wings of the morning to the farthest oceans, we might end up in Fiji. Situated directly east of the north coast of Australia, Fiji is made up of about 300 beautiful islands. Because the International Date Line passes between some of these islands, Fiji is one of the first countries in the world to welcome each new day. Most of us won't have the opportunity to visit these islands, but if we did, God would be every bit as present there as He is anywhere else in the world. We can experience the love of God and the comfort of His presence no matter we are. He is present everywhere. Father, We're grateful that Your strenght and guidance are always available, ready to refresh us wherever we may be. Amen.
Jan 2nd All of It All scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip His people to do every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 The apostle Paul began these verses with the little word all. "All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful." The Bible tells one story from start to finish. It opens in a garden, closes in a city, and all the way through points to Jesus. We learn about God, ourselves, sin, how God reaches out to us, and how He provided His Son, Jesus, as the way for us to know Him. The Bible equips us to deal with our struggles. It helps us to gain new perspective, because we see heaven ahead of us. What a rich experience it is to immerse ourselves in the Bible-all of it! Father, The gift of Your Word makes us rich. May we value all of it. Amen
Jan 3rd Walk with God Noah found favor with the LORD. Noah was a righteous man, the only blameless person living on earth at this time, and he walked in close fellowship with God. Genesis 6:8-9 Noah wasn't perfect. The Bible makes that clear. Nonetheless, he was righteous and he walked with God. All throughout the Bible, walking is much more than physically putting one foot in front of the other. Walking signifies relationship. Where a person was headed and who they chose to walk with made all the difference in the world. Over the long years (it took 120 years to build the ark), Noah walked closely with God and was commended for his faith, obedience, and righteousness (Herb. 11:7). How delightful it would be if, at the end of our lives, others could say about us, "She walked with God." Father, We long to be close to You and to sense Your favor, Just like Noah. Help us to walk with You each day. Amen
Jan 4th A Mansion Beyond "There is more than enough room in My Father's home. When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with Me where I am." John 14:2-3 Situated on 17 acres in Provence, France, is a stately mansion that rents for $50,000 a week. With 16 bedrooms and 16 bathrooms, there's plenty of space for the whole family! Situated in heaven, with more than enough room, are large and stately mansions for us to live in forever. Jesus paid the price for us to stay there. He paid with His blood because He wants us to be able to live with Him for eternity. Our entrance is secured by our faith in Him. While we may eagerly look forward to our earthly vacations - be they camping or luxury resorts - nothing can be compared to the lavish wonders of our heavenly home. Our holidays may seem to end too quickly but heaven will be our new home, and it will be a place of unending rest and delight! Lord, Thank You that I have so much to look forward to. Help me not to lose sight of the beautiful future You have for me. Amen.
Jan 5th Greater Than.... You belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world. 1 John 4:4 Do you remember the greater than (>) less than (<) mathematical symbols we learned back in school? None of us would ever argue that five is not greater than three, or that one is not less than four. That's obvious. Sometimes, though, the 'greater than, less than' principle looks more obvious to us in the mathematical realm than it does in the spiritual realm. Lest we as God's children forget, the apostle John reminds us that God's Spirit is greater than any fears or temptations we could ever face. No matter what challenges or difficulties we are dealing with today, the Spirit who lives in us is greater than the spirit who lives in the world. Father, Even at times when it doesn't seem obvious to us, help us to believe that Your Spirit is greater than the spirit of the world. Amen.
Jan 6th Free Food "Is anyone thirsty? Come and drink-even if you have no money! Come, take your choice of wine or milk-it's all free! Why spend your money on food that does not give you strength? Listen to Me, and you will eat what is good. You will enjoy the finest food." Isaiah 55:1-2 If you travel to Austria and order Wiener schnitzel for dinner, take some euros to pay for the meal. If you visit India and opt for Chicken Tandori, make sure that you put some rupee in your wallet. Regardless of where we eat, food costs money. When Jesus invites everyone in the whole world to enjoy His gospel feast, He tells us that we don't need any money. All He asks is that we come to Him with a sense of our need - with thirsty hearts. In return for our longing, He blesses us with the free gift of His grace and lasting nourishment from His presence and His Word. Gracious Father, How kind of You to make the finest food available to us all - with no money required. Amen.
Jan 7th God Satisfies He is the God who made the world and everything in it. Since He is Lord of heaven and earth. He doesn't live in man-made temples, and human hands can't serve His needs - for He has no needs. He Himself gives life and breath to everything, and He satisfies every need. Acts 17:24-25 Imagine if we were completely satisfied and did not have any needs. No need for food...sleep...water...money...forgiveness. With no needs of our own, we would be entirely free to concentrate on other people's needs. Actually, that is what God is doing right now. He is taking care of our needs. The One who created food at the beginning of the world still provides it today. The One who sent His Son to provide forgiveness of sins still provides it today. God didn't bring us into existence only to leave us on our own. Instead, He demonstrates His love continually by caring for our needs. Gracious Father, We are grateful for the many ways You show Your care for us. Amen.
Jan 8th God Hears and Helps As for me, I look to the LORD for help. I wait confidently for God to save me, and my God will certainly hear me. Micah 7:7 Great faith isn't just limited to the prophets. The faith of the Old testament prophet, Micah, can be ours as well. Look to the Lord for help. More than taking a peek or a glance at God, we make Him the center of our attention. He becomes our Pole Star as we read His Word, think about Him, and talk to Him. I wait confidently for God to save me. Sometimes we think of waiting in terms of standing in line, but waiting can be more purposeful than that. We can pray, linger in God's Word, and watch for His goodness. Our faith will grow as we look at our challenges in the light of God's power instead of looking at God in the shadow of our challenges. He will help us. Father, What would we do without You? Thank You for hearing us, helping us, and saving us. Amen.
Jan 9th Precious Wisdom Wisdom is more precious than rubies; nothing you desire can compare with her. Proverbs 3:15 Just how precious are rubies? Along with diamonds, emeralds, and sapphires, they are considered one of the four precious gems and are exceptionally rare. Not found just anywhere, rubies are unearthed most often in Burma, Sri-Lanka, Kenya, Madagascar and Cambodia. If we were to purchase one of these gems to be set in a ring or hung on a necklace, we might pay anywhere from $500 to $5,000 for the piece of jewelry. Wisdom is even more valuable than rubies, and we don't need to ravel to Asia, Africa, or our local jeweler to find it. Wisdom is unearthed in God's Word, with the help of His Holy Spirit. The only tools we need to acquire it are a Bible and a receptive heart. Father, We're thankful that we have constant access to Your wisdom. Amen.
Jan 10th A Staggering Debt "Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand talents was brought to him. The servant fell on his knee before him. 'Be patient with me', he begged, 'and I will pay back everything'. The servant's master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go." Matthew 18:23-24
Jesus' parable about forgiveness means significantly more to us when we understand the amounts of money being discussed. The servant is this parable owed the master 10,000 talents.
In the first century, one talent was equivalent to a worker's wages for about 15 years. This meant that the servant owed his master 150,000 years worth of wages! This was a sum no one could ever repay.
So it is with our sin. God has forgiven us far more than we could repay. Because we have been forgiven much, He calls us to forgive others.
Lord, You have forgiven us so much. Give us forgiving spirits so that - like you - we will forgive those who have offended us. In Jesus' name, Amen.
One Minute Devotions ~ Simply Refreshing ~ A Life Worth Living ~ Ellen Banks Elwell