I just started reading a book by Elyse M. Fitzpatrick and Dennis E. Johnson called Counsel from the Cross. It’s a book that is rich in Biblical truth–so you have to read and then soak it in. And then read some more. If you lived by me, I might have to convince you to read this with me and discuss…completely my kind of book…I am a mom that NEEDS the gospel and daily transforming. I need to view life after being transformed daily–and to not interpret things the way I want to–but to come to the cross with all my stuff, see my daily sin for what it is, be changed and cling to Him…so that I may live through His strength and in His will. We serve a forgiving God–and we mustn’t get chained down forgetting we are already forgiven. Because WHEN we remember the power of the cross and the grace that happened there for our sake, we will no longer be robbed of living “those Christlike qualities of kindness, generousity, gentleness, and longsuffering. It will also rob us of the only acceptable motives for obedience: love” (page 28).
I want to thank YOU…those of you who are out there and for whatever reason…have read my blog and prayed about being used by God. YOU have been a beautiful picture to me of what it means to live like Christ and even serve those you do not know…simply because you are filled with His love…
…over a month ago, we shared the need for mosquito nets for the kids going to school at Korah. In 24 hours, many of YOU reading now were led to my blog that day–and you gave! In 24 hours, God used YOU to supply those kids with protection from malaria. Your heart was broken to think of your own child going to a malaria zone without protection…you identified with the need…you gave…YOU are literally being used to change lives!
…about a month ago, we shared the need for panties and pads for these girls and for the women at Wiphan…they continue to get infections and not attend school because they didn’t have sanitary things to help during their menstral cycles. HUNDREDS of you were led some how to read about the need that day…and HUNDREDS of you made the commitment to DO SOMETHING. You loved these girls and ladies from afar…you gave…and through you–there will be change.
…a few weeks ago I shared about a family who are missionaries and adopting (you remember…the incredible “Yellow, Red, Black and White” shirts.) You all took the challenge to share their need and joined us in not only buying their shirts but sharing their need with others…THEN just two days ago–I shared another sweet adoptive family’s shirts…and ONCE AGAIN…YOU (whoever you are out there I don’t know…but I do know that God leads the sweetest, most giving group of people to my blog during the most perfect times!)…YOU went over and bought lots of shirts…making my sweet friend one busy lady for 24 hours (they sold almost 50 shirts in just ONE day!). Many of you are adopting YOURSELVES…yet you continue to LOVE, GIVE and CHANGE lives. WOW.
I have to tell YOU this. God is using you to minister to me…to not give up loving, giving and changing. THANK YOU.
Lately, I have gotten really tired with the unknowns of our doctor visits. One doctor says he has parasites…another says his stool samples showed they were negative. One doctor says he has asthma and gives us a round the clock regime to follow…while another says he just has a virus. One doctor says his belly is big from giarida…another says it’s from malnourishment…and the GI specialist whom we waited an entire month to see told me after once glance and not doing ANY test, “His belly is big because he is obese, you feed him too much and I’m referring you to my nutritionist to put him on a diet.” (Don’t worry, I’m not taking that last specialists advice–and when I asked him how many post-malnourished babies with distended babies he had seen, he said none.) He also wrote me a prescription for reflux when I told him about night sweats and night terrors…it only happens 1-2 times a week…but he said it was probably just reflux. (Not sure we’re filling that prescription either). Some times I wonder if NOTHING is the wrong…just a simple case of hypotonia and all these doctors referring us in circles will give us any answers. I’m wondering if the pain he is in has nothing to do with the physical…and it really is only the Great Physician who can heal the pain, the delays and the hurdles.
AND just when I want to toss it all out to the birds…YOU remind me to not give up loving, giving and helping change happen.
I was driving home tonight from meeting with a friend, and I was thinking about how incredible it is that I could sit in my living room and share these CRAZY nneds across the world and across the country. I smiled thinking how our husbands probably all make fun of us for blog reading. BUT then…YOU guys use it to learn of need—LOVE…then you are led to GIVE…and lives are actually being CHANGED. Without blogs, the internet and technology–you all would not know these needs and neither would I. Yet YOU are using them to be used and YOU continue to step up to the plate and serve. THANK YOU. I am so encouraged.
While I feel like I can be judgemental of the culture, the church, believers…whatever NOT loving, giving, changing…really–my being judgemental IS sin and it is not trusting and it is NOT from the cross of Christ. When we carry grudges, hurt feelings, judgement that others aren’t helping the problems of the world…or even little ole us in our need…IT IS SIN. BUT…there is HOPE. We can confess that—and stop TRYING so hard…we can stop trying to do so much and wondering why the church and believers aren’t joining us…we can stop working so hard to improve ourselves…AND we can even stop asking what would Jesus do…and then becoming so consumed and overwhelmed because it is TOO MUCH FOR US. It can NOT be us working. We can NOT do it. It must be Him. When we begin to really think about what has ALREADY BEEN DONE through the cross…when we REALLY focus on that and see us and see others how He sees us and how He sees others…then the heaviness fades away and He can be the one doing the work through us and being glorified. When I begin to really understand the grace HE has given ME…it becomes so easy to extend that same grace to others. All of the sudden I am trusting Him in new ways to provide and be glorified through my life.
AND THEN…I SEE YOU! You, who are ALREADY there—and even in the midst of financial strain or raising money for your own adoptions…you continue to LOVE, GIVE and CHANGE.
I just wanted to encourage YOU. I know I said the other day…this blog world can so often feel one-sided. BUT I love to watch how YOU make it something different…how YOU hear a need and you don’t think twice. And I am just so honored to get to do this life with so many of YOU. YOU continue to pour out your love and resources for change–and I am so encouraged every time I say a need or prayer request. When personally, I am tired–and have shared our journey and prayer requests and like I’m even too tired to pray…I know YOU my sisters and brothers in Christ are there. And so many others you lift up and care for. Thank you for loving, giving and changing. Thank you for shining Jesus and being used in the lives of so many He dearly loves. And thank you for encouraging me through your faith and good deeds to keep on keeping on. Goodness, I feel like ending like Paul so often ended his letters…
“The grace of the Lord Jesus be with you. My love to all of you in Christ Jesus. Amen.” (1 Corinthians 16:24)