Today is our 28th anniversary. We just finished a week of having everyone home (except Rebecca who is off helping orphan African children for 5 weeks; I'll include her email later.) It was great! I love being with our kids and their spouses and our grandkids! What a blessing God has given us! We didn't do anything "memorable" or expensive or unique. We had fun playing in the water in the back yard, jumping on the trampoline, sitting out on the deck, eating together, playing miniature golf -- and, well, just being together. We all tried out Christina's camera to see if a digital SLR might be worth the investment. We spent one afternoon putting in a new window at my parent's house and repainting some of the trim outside. We went with Micah and Allie to look at a house they might be interested in buying if it is still available when the time comes. We remembered the past, talked about the present, and wondered about the future. After Micah and Allie left, we visited the Omaha Zoo and ate at Famous Dave's. For all you who weren't here, I'll post a slide show of our time together. Also, as I promised, here is Rebecca's email from Africa. We missed you, Rebecca!
Right, so Im typing on a computer with the keys in the wrong place, so were going to make this brief. I am safely in Africa...I LOVE it...I might be back in August :] The trip here was long, but so incredibly worth it. I greatly appreciate all your prayers and look forward to sharing with all of you when I return. Our second camp here in Rwanda starts tomorrow. The first camp was incredibl; you should see the pictures. God is so good. My love to you all. Rebecca
My two-year old granddaughter made my day yesterday morning! We were getting ready for church; Kylie was already dressed in a little blue spring dress that made her feel like a princess. Whenever she wears a dress she declares, "I a princess!" Well, she saw me coming downstairs with my church dress on and with a most delighted look on her face, she asked, "Grandma, you a princess too?" That's the closest I've ever come to being called a princess by anyone. It was great! It made me think of one of my favorite "girl" verses in Psalms ~ "The King's daughter is all glorious within. Her clothing is interwoven with gold." (Psalm 45:13) Maybe, when Kylie gets a little older, I'll be able to share that verse with her and help her understand that being a princess is what she is inside, in her character and in her relationship to the King, not what she wears on the outside.
I spent Saturday night in a hospital room holding my week-and-a-half-old granddaughter so her mom and dad could get some sleep. She was on oxygen, had an IV in her hand, and was on two different monitors that kept track of her heart rate, breathing rate, and oxygen levels in her blood. One foot was bandaged where they had taken blood that morning and she had a bandaid on her lower back where they had drawn spinal fluid to check for menengitis. All this on such a tiny little body. Her face was puffy from the fluids they were pumping into her. She had so much congestion in her nose and head that she couldn't breathe laying on her back and she needed the comfort of being cradled close -- so we took turns holding her. They said she had RSV, an upper respiratory disease of young children especially and the flu that everyone else has had recently. She slept most of the night Saturday, waking up only once to be fed and then going back to sleep. I was very glad to be there and to be able to hold her. This is the second time we've gotten a call saying that one of our grandkids was going to the hospital. I'm trying to figure out why that is "scarier" than when our own kids were sick? Maybe it's because there are two to be concerned about -- our child and our grandchild. Or maybe it's because we have absolutely no control over the situation and we are not intimately acquainted with all that is going on. We are not there to evaluate the situation on a moment by moment basis. And maybe also, God gives special grace to parents with sick children to be able to trust Him and handle it in a calm way for the sake of the child (and other children). I was so proud of Melody and the way she handled the whole thing. She did not "lose it" at all, but was calm and composed and trusting (the Lord). And Caleb was such excellent support and strength for them both. They stayed in the hospital until Monday morning so they could get the results back from the 48-hour blood and spinal fluid cultures. I went today to help Melody with getting groceries and a few other odd jobs. They are doing fine. Julia is very glad to have all the tubes and monitors off and to have her hand back! And Ethan and Kylie are ready to get back to being a family again. (They stayed with Caleb's parents during the hospital stay.) I am so very thankful for the Lord's comfort and peace in these kinds of life experiences.
I am a wife and mother - and now a grandmother, a daughter, an aunt, a sister, my kids' "mom" (to their friends), more recently - a pastor's wife. Most of my life has been spent at home, doing what I love most - being a wife and mother. Now that our kids are grown, that looks a little different, but I love it even so. The "center" and stability for my life is Jesus Christ. He holds me together and satisfies the deepest part of me. All glory belongs to Him!