We continue to have people ask us for updates and come forward to share that our blog/story has touched them. All we can say is, “God”. God is in the details of our walk and God is using our walk for His glory. If you are here reading our blog, make no mistake, God has a plan in bringing you here. You are not here by accident.
Details. Details are not always my strong point, but we do have one son who is very artistic. He can describe things/people/places down to the minutest detail and I am amazed! For some reason, my mind is elsewhere and does not take the time to notice all the details. Thankfully, our God does take note of all the details of our lives.
A few weeks ago, I met a lady wanting to become a permanent breastmilk donor. She “just so happened” to live in the same town that my dear friend, Debbie, goes to every other week! In fact, she(her home) “just so happened” to be on Debbie’s way home! This lady Alisha, has tough pregnancies and is on bedrest for most of the pregnancy. She is always having to let others take care of her and her family during these times. She decided with this last pregnancy that she wanted to give back and that she’d like to donate to a baby in need. Seth’s Story shows up! She has been awesome! She is keeping a food diarty for us, so, that we can watch for any reactions in Seth to the milk and then see what she had eaten that day! This is huge as Seth has been struggling with eczema and we do not know if it is related to what someone ate. She is also trying to increase her milk production for Seth!!!! Praise the Lord!
The awesome part of this story is that Alisha and I talked on the phone on a Monday evening. She said that Debbie could pick up milk that night if she’d like. So, I texted Debbie to see if she was still there in town. It “just so happened” that that evening Debbie and her children had to stay later than usual and I was texting her during the time she normally would have been driving home! She would have been halfway home by that time, but I “just so happened” to text her about the milk when she was staying late and she was able to pick it up for us! Praise God! God is in the details!
Most of you know that we were called here a little over a year ago. We left behind family, dear friends, and a few material possessions. One of our material possessions was a cute, Cape Cod play house that Steve had built. Steve build this house about 10 years ago in Indiana. Then we moved it to our farm in IN, then we moved it to CT, then we moved it back to IN, and then we tried to have it moved with our possessions to UT. The moving company and Steve’s company agreed to move it for us. Adorable play house! It would become a sweet, “heirloom” for our children and grandchildren. Steve has a gift to build without one iota of a blueprint-decks, corner cabinets, tables, gazebos, play houses, mini-barns, sewing cabinets, blanket chests, you name it, he can build it. Our younger children loved playing in it. Well, the company finally decided after months of back and forth that they could not move the house. It would not be possible. And yet, Steve had always been able to move the house himself before! 🙂 So, they offered to roll the money that it would cost to move it and rebuild it into a company here in Utah, to build us a play house. Mind you, this amount of money was big in our eyes! We had not spent that much on building the playhouse. So, we agreed. The younger children and I drooled over the fun, expensive play houses that we had to choose from. Finally, it was decided that we would order an adorable house that would include a second story, a slide, and more. Oh, wow, what fun and how fancy!!! That was back in October/November time. A few weeks ago, Steve and I both were thinking about the playhouse and how it had not arrived yet. I had been praying for God to lead us to where the money would come from for our next adoption. Yes, we want to adopt again. We would love for Seth to have a sibling close in age that is adopted too. But, how? We had no clue, as we had just used all of our “excess” (is there any excess?) money to adopt Seth and cover his hospital stay during his drug withdrawal. One night I prayed again for God to give us specifics on how to fund the adoption. The next day, Steve received a call from the playhouse company. They were so sorry that they had not started on building our playhouse yet. They would be getting to us soon. Steve called me and said, “I want you to pray about this. I think we might be able to ask them for the money instead of them building a playhouse for us.” I immediately asked the children to start praying about it and told them what we were thinking-the money could go towards adopting another little one. By that evening, the children had had a meeting, prayed and decided that they did NOT want the playhouse, but instead wanted the money so that we may give another child a forever family. I feel like crying as I type this….our children want a baby to have a forever family instead of receiving an amazing playhouse that every child only dreams of having someday. Wow. God does some amazing work in our children’s lives even when we are not looking. He is in those details too.
So, Steve called the family-owned company and told them our “story” and asked if they’d consider giving us any of the money instead of building a playhouse. They doubted they could do that, but would talk about it. We spent the next week praying, all of us. Praying that they would have a heart for adoption. They finally called…would we accept 85% of what they had been given to build the house? YES!!!!!!!! Our children gave up their beloved playhouse that was built by their sweet father and the opportunity to have one of those unbelievable-castle- size playhouses built for them, TO GIVE ANOTHER CHILD A FOREVER FAMILY!!! Thank you, Lord for the heart you have given our children. You amaze us continuously. You truly are in the details.
As we worked on pulling together the list of all our personal possessions that burned in the fire, I kept thinking about how nice it would be to take some of that money that the insurance company gives us for our personal possessions (clothes, tools, etc.) and put it towards adopting a little one again. But, I knew that we will need that money to build the stalls in the barn as the insurance company only gave us 1/3 of the value of the barn. So, the shell of the barn is being built, but we are having to come up with the means to build the stalls. I kept praying about it. Then Steve said to me that we could take some of the leftover money for the stalls and set aside a small amount from it for adopting again! Praise God!He was in the details of that prayer as I knew Steve wanted to use the money to rebuild the stalls. The loss was only material possessions anyway. A soul is so much more! Please join us in praying that the insurance company will give us the full amount of what we lost in the fire for our personal possessions. If they do, then we will see LIFE coming from ashes! Out of the ashes can come such beauty!
Fannie Mae and our mortgage company did come to an agreement on the insurance money for the barn. We were given the money. So, this past week, the barn building people came and spent 3 days cleaning up our ashes and remnants of our life just a few months ago. As of Friday, they had the posts in the ground w/cement! Praise God!
Another detail of our barn story. The contractor pointed out to us that all (ALL) of our support posts for the two-story barn were NOT in cement! One straight wind and the barn would have collapsed on anyone or any animal in it! The fire was a huge blessing in disguise! That fire may very well have saved our lives or at least several of our animals lives. Oh, the details that we often never know.
Next detail, we have not been out to eat in over 6 months. We don’t usually go out to eat. We eat at a restaurant maybe a couple times a year, if it’s a good year! 🙂 Yesterday afternoon, Steve suddenly said to me, “Let’s call my Mom and ask if she’ll stay with the children while we go out to eat.”
My response, “Tonight?” The whole time I am thinking…oh, but the cost of dining out and I am so tired already…blah, blah, blah.
His response, “Sure, why not?” Steve later told me that he was tired and didn’t feel up to going either, but he felt that he needed to get me out of the house for a little while and we needed to go.
So, we went out to eat. Wow, it was so much fun to have someone else cook for us and serve us! Oh, and the food was so good! Yumm. I don’t think I’ve tasted food that good in a long time, except for when Steve cooks here at home! So much fun! Anyway, when we were seated, Steve left me for a few minutes because he had to go move our car to a different parking area. The waiter comes and asks me if I’d like a high chair for Seth. We took him with us. 🙂 I explained that Seth is not old enough to sit up yet. He then informed me that the car seat could sit on the high chair. Huh? I never knew that! I admit, it has been 6 years since I had a baby and yes, we tended to never go out to eat back then with a baby, but it sits on the high chair? Really? Then two other couples that were at separate tables by us, started giving me suggestions on how we could sit the baby seat on the high chair. A few of them even got up and came over to help! I joked about how many people does it take to figure out how to put a baby seat on the high chair. After we had Seth situated (which ended up being back on the floor!), we began to talk about him. I explained he was adopted and told a snippet of his story. Steve came back a few minutes later and the other couple congratulated him on Seth! We then proceeded to talk off and on through the whole meal with the couple across from us. Where were they from? Steve and the other guy, Gary, were both in the military at one time! They were around our age. They love children! By the end of our meal, we gave them our Glory Acres Ranch business card and shared some more of our God stories. Turns out they are Believers too! We walked out the restaurant together and stood outside on the sidewalk for about 30 minutes sharing more of our God stories with them. Several hugs and handshakes were exchanged at numerous times and then we were off to our separate ways. It all became totally clear that God had nudged Steve to ask me to go out to eat! God had the details worked out that we would sit across from Gary and Shannon! He even worked out the details of when Steve’s Mom asked if we wanted to leave Seth at home with her and the rest of the children, that we would say we wanted to take him with us. Seth opened up the conversation lines beween us! Gary and Shannon if you are reading this, we were so blessed to have met you last night! We know God was in the details of us meeting last night! We are looking forward to having you over for a visit when you come back to Utah! We look forward to you meeting the rest of our family as well. And Gary, somehthing you said keeps ringing in my ears, “You can’t outgive God.” You told us this when we were talking about Seth’s adoption and wanting to adopt again. You reminded us, that we are giving. This is something that we forget at times. It seems that Seth is giving so much to us! Seth’s birth mom gave so much to us. Our friends and family gave so much to our adoption fund for Seth. Our children give so much to us. We forget that we too, are giving. 🙂 Gary and Shannon it was such a pleasure to meet you last night. We thank the Lord that we decided at the spur of the moment, which is not like us at all, to go out to eat. He was in the details of our meeting and we have been blessed to have met you all. We pray you have a safe trip back home and that you will come visit us the next time you are in town. You are always welcome here.
As I’m sure most of you have picked up by now, yes, we want to adopt again. We would love to adopt a sibling close in age to Seth as the rest of our children are all close in age. We have put our name in the “hat” again with some attorneys and agencies. We are preparing for who the Lord will bless us with by continuing to raise funds for our next adoption. The ashes in our life are helping start this LIFE adoption fund already. I look back at all the things we had before our move here and before our fire. Those things are now turning into LIFE for a little one to join our family forever. Would I have dragged all that stuff out and listed it for sale on ebay or in a garage sale? Hard to say, but as a human, I know I wouldn’t try and sell all of it. I would have held on tightly to some things with my fleshly hands. God worked those details out for us. I don’t have to think heavily on each item and if I am willing to let it go. It’s gone. But, a little one’s life will not be gone because we have said “yes” to building something beautiful from our ashes. Beauty from ashes is what seems to be the running theme in our heads these days. Such beauty.
Looking back over the past year here, we see that we have been so unbelievably blessed. It is amazing how we were called here, how we told God “no” to taking the job here, how our realtor in Utah, friends in Utah, and friends in Indiana all kept emphasizing to us that we were to go to Utah. Even our dear friends, who wanted us to stay in Indiana, told us we needed to go. We are beginning to see some of the reasons why. We couldn’t have wrecked a truck into a mountain in Indiana! We couldn’t have had a nine stall horse barn in Indiana! Let alone, have it burn down! We couldn’t have lost our dog in the storm. We couldn’t have met the friends we have met here. And most important of all, we probably wouldn’t have Seth right now! Yes, I know as you read some of the list, you wonder why we would count those things as blessings, such as the wreck, the fire, etc. They are all blessings. We count it all JOY. Dear Friends, you would not believe how much we have been blessed because of the heartache we have been through. We have been SO SO SO blessed. We cannot say it enough. We would not want it any other way. We prayed before coming here that we would be a light to others and that we would give God glory in all things. I also specifically prayed (felt compelled to pray) for our faith to grow even stronger, just a few days before all of the pain started in December. I knew at the time that I prayed it, that we were going to take a walk on the “wild side”, but I knew I HAD to pray it. I was compelled by the Holy Spirit to pray and walk. And God has not let us down. He has answered our prayers.
We will end this post with one more thought. If God can bring such beauty from ashes in our lives, what beauty can He bring from the ashes in your life? Have you given Him a chance to show you? Have you asked Him to grow your faith? To show you His glory? Have you asked him how you can be hands and feet and for Him here on earth? If not, why? Are you fearful? Trust in the Lord with ALL your heart…..For the Lord hath not given you a spirit of fear……I could go on and on with bits of Scripture. Take a moment today and turn off your computer, your phone, your tv, and read your Bible. Soak in God’s word. We spend so much more time doing “stuff” these days and so much less time with God’s word. We need to turn this around. More time with God’s word and less with all the “stuff”. Do your children know the Bible? Can they quote any Scripture? And do they know Jesus? Jesus died for you on that cross. Your sins are washed away with His blood. You owe Him nothing as it is His sweet gift to you. YOU! He loves you that much. He gave his life for you. Have you shared Jesus with your children? Your friends? Your neighbors? Or maybe you are wanting to know more about Jesus. Open your Bible. Our family so desperately wants you to know Jesus as your Lord and Savior. Did you know that we pray for you constantly? Did you know that I have been in tears late at night or early in the morning as I have been crying out to the Lord for you to know Him and accept His precious gift. I have been known to wake in the middle of the night and begin praying for you! I love you so much and want you to know Jesus. I want you to spend eternity with us. My family loves you. We would gladly give all of our material possessions up to have you know Jesus and accept His gift. This is a beautiful GIFT. You need do nothing, but accept this precious gift. It’s time for you to sift through your ashes.
God is in the details of this walk!