Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The Starfish Story

The Starfish Story
 (adapted from The Star Thrower by Loren Eiseley 1907-1977)

Once upon a time, there was a wise man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing.  He had a habit of walking on the beach before he began his work.

One day, as he was walking along the shore, he looked down the beach and saw a human figure moving like a dancer.  He smiled to himself at the thought of someone who would dance to the day, and so, he walked fast to catch up.

As he got closer, he noticed that the figure was that of a young man, and that what he was doing was not dancing at all.  The young man was reaching down to the shore, picking up small objects, and throwing them into the ocean.

He came closer still and called out "Good morning!  May I ask what it is that you are doing?"

The young man paused, looked up, and replied "Throwing starfish into the ocean."

"I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?" asked the somewhat startled wise man.

To this, the young man replied, "The sun is up and the tide is going out.  If I don't throw them in, they'll die."

Upon hearing this, the wise man commented, "But, young man, do you not realize that there are miles and miles of beach and there are starfish all along every mile?  You can't possibly make a difference!"

At this, the young man bent down, picked up yet another starfish, and threw it into the ocean.  As it met the water, he said, "It made a difference for that one."

The statistics are staggering.
Their plight is overwhelming.
Yet, you can make a difference in the life of a child.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

The Pharmacy Fairy

Another blessing I wanted to mention... we have a pharmacy "fairy"!  Magically (divinely) our prescriptions have been showing up on our front porch... paid for!  Thanks pharmacy fairy!!! We love you!!!
John has been out of work for five weeks now.  He was promised four weeks severance which has not been delivered (I have no idea why this is all underlined, but I can't fix it) yet.  HR says it will be processed by May 28th (?!?!?).  Also, he has not been able to collect unemployment yet because unemployment thinks we're living off of severance.  There's the rub.

Also, the mom of a child in Sam's class has been another angel in our lives.  She works for the ARC of GSO and took me to this warehouse where I got a bunch of stuff for very little money!  She has been so encouraging and is trying to help us through paperwork and such to try to get medical assistance for the little guy, as well as sent me a bunch of info on camps for special needs kids!  It is amazing how God puts people in our lives and we have no idea what He has planned out and how he intertwines peoples lives together to accomplish His purposes!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The Notebook

Okay, sometimes I just need some stress relief and this method has really paid off for me!  I have a notebook that I always carry in my purse in case I need to take notes for some reason or to write something down so I don't forget it (because of my missing brain cells due to college life and having babies).  So anyway, I decided that when I had a sarcastic comment to make (which is usually daily for me), I would write it in my notebook instead of spew it out of my mouth.  The paper in my notebook has perforations so I could easily tear them out and "ticket" people if the need should arise; which it did today.  I "ticketed" Jake and an angry driver.  LOL.  Yeah, it's stress relief because I'm still cracking up about it.  I'll give you an example, but please don't judge me.  One page in my notebook reads "Get a grip"; another reads "Nice parking! (including a heart on the bottom of the exclamation point and smily face)".  It helps me.  It really does.  I'm needing some levity in my life.

Oh yeah, and I have some AMAZING blessings to tell you about tomorrow.  xoxo   

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

More Blessings

Well I'm behind on my blogging again (surprise, surprise) but I want to catch you up and let you know of God's many blessings over the past week or so!  Last week we received another box of some diabetic supplies:  Test strips (which are very expensive), lancets, and alcohol wipes.  A friend sent us a $25 gift card (Thanks LG!), and anonymous friends of my parents sent us $300!  Wow!  Why does the faithfulness of God always amaze me?  We're His children and he is abundantly taking care of us.!

This week God provided us with a blessing of $250 cash!!  Also, a $100 gift card to Walmart and $50 to the movies so John and I can go on a date!!  Dates with my hubby have been among the first things axed as we've tightened our belts.  What a blessing to have such Godly and generous friends in our lives.  The thing that blows my mind is that none of our 'angels' are rich; they have even given sacrificially!  What a wonder to be part of the family of God!  We are truly blessed.

And as we're blessed, my heart remains heavy for people such as these who are literally starving to death in Uganda.  This week I hope to give back in some way, and pass some blessings on to those who really need it:  Orphans and widows in the far reaches of the earth who have no hope of food, clean water, and the basic necessities of life.  Will you join me, even sacrificially?  Here is one way you can help!  Click here!

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

The Mysterious Email: Another Chronicle of God's Faithfulness

Here is another amazing story about how God is providing for our family amidst unemployment:

A few days ago we received this anonymous email from someone who so cleverly created an email address just for this purpose. The email read:

Dear John and Kirsten,

We heard about John getting laid off and your concerns about medical insurance. We are praying for you and your family each and every day. We wanted you to be reminded that God loves you and will continue to be your provider! And to know that you are loved by many many friends. We mailed a package to you today that should arrive by Saturday or Monday. We had planned to put this letter in the package, but forgot to bring it to the post office. Please use the contents of the package to help fuel your job search and the money orders to help with medical coverage or anything else you choose.

With God's love and ours

WOW!!  We were so excited and waited with anticipation for our package.  Then it came:

Four packages of our FAVORITE coffee and $600 in money orders!!!  
Plus, we had received another $100 in the mail that day for other things.
That's $700 plus coffee in one day!!!

God is so good!!!  We are so blessed to be children of the most generous Father!

And because God has blessed us, we are able to pay some forward by helping here:  

Will you consider helping too?  Even facing unemployment, we have more than we could ever ask for or imagine.  We have so much more abundance than these babies dying in Ethiopia.  Even if you can only give $5, please please do so.  You could save a life!!!
Praise be to God!

***A special thank you to vogelfriend@gmail.com for being the hands and feet of Jesus.  We love you dearly and are so thankful for you!!  xoxo

Monday, May 04, 2009

Chronicles of God's Faithfulness, Part 2

It has been one week and two days since John was laid off from his job due to the current economic situation in the U.S.  In this short time we have been blessed beyond belief by the Lord and our brothers and sisters in Christ.  Some of these things may be out of order, but I want to recount everything the Lord has done for us so that for years to come the stories of God's faithfulness to our family can be passed down to our children, grandchildren, and generations to come.

We were invited to a close friend's birthday party and had to decide whether or not to buy a gift or to save our pennies wisely.  Our friend knew of our situation and assured us that no gift was necessary.  My sweet children, instead of pouting about not buying the gifts they had in mind, found gifts to give from their own collection of toys.  The thing that impressed me the most was that they picked from their 'best' things; things that they knew that their friend loved to play with when she came to our house.  It warmed my heart to witness their generous spirits and desire to give their 'best' to others.  Then, at the party, not only were the presents a big hit, but the grandma stuck $40 in my pocket.  This is a lady who works hard for her money and doesn't have a lot of it.  I felt so incredibly and truly blessed and humbled that day.

Another day I went into the school office as I usually do.  One of the receptionist's husband had been laid off also and she knew my anxiety over simple things like lunches for my kids.  Four kids packing four lunches and snacks for five days a week really adds up:  Juice boxes, snack packs, etc.  Did I mention that my kids can EAT?!  Anyway, she pulled me aside and offered that since John was laid off my kids could get free lunches.  I had never thought of that and part of me hated to swallow my pride, but my kids are now thrilled to get yummy lunches every day.  Their school does not have yucky cafeteria food, but the Booster Club brings in Golden Corral, Chick-Fil-A, Papa John's, and Subway.  It's all like a slice of heaven to my kids and beats peanut butter and jelly any day!!  Another huge blessing to not have to buy that stuff!!

The other day I went to the grocery store with a friend so we could get some great sales.  Some of the things were buy two get three free.. awesome!  Anyway, when it came time to check out, my friend insisted on paying for my stuff since we got so much stuff for such a small price.  My friend is a single mom and doesn't have a lot by any means.  Of course I argued with her about it but she said that God had blessed  her and she wanted to pass it on, or 'pay it forward', so to speak.  Again, I am humbled and awed at how God is providing so much for us!!

Last night at OFY there were hotdogs, buns, chili, cereal, and milk left over.  My friend there insisted that I take some extras home.  Let me tell you, there is more food in my fridge than there usually is!!  Praise the Lord!!  And this is just a little glimpse of what 's God been doing... Just wait until tomorrow!!


Friday, May 01, 2009

Chronicles of God's Faithfulness - Part 1

As sad and as hard as it was to hear that John was being laid off, we have never doubted for a moment the our Father would provide for us.  The Bible says that when we accept Christ's gift of forgiveness and eternal life and turn our life over to Him, that He adopts us as one of his very own children.  You know that we love this picture of adoption and how Sam is loved immensely  like a child of my own womb.  That is the same picture that God has of us.  We become HIS children.  He is our abba Father (abba is translated as "Daddy").  As an earthly father nurtures and takes care of his children, so God takes care of us, his children.

God knows and is sympathetic toward our anxiety about medical stuff.  We shouldn't be anxious, but present our requests to Him as we've done.  This is the first of many ways that God our Daddy has answered our prayers:  I contacted a Christian medical supply company about supplies for Jake's insulin pump.  Of course, it all sounded too good to be true and I kept waiting for the 'catch'.  I thought I'd believe it when I saw it.  Then,  a couple days after John was laid off,  we received a box in the mail.  In the box were three boxes of infusion sets (retail $110 per box), three boxes of insulin cartridges ($81.25 per box) and three boxes of IV prep ($14.25 per box)  That is $616.50 worth of insulin pump supplies for FREE.  We didn't even get charged for shipping!!  

I cried when I opened the box.  My heavenly Father is so faithful.  He knows the hairs on my son's head and He will take care of him!  I am awed and humbled!!  Thank you Jesus!

Stay-tuned for more God-stories while we're on this unemployment journey!  You will be amazed!  <><