I'm fairly new to blogging so this may take me a little bit to get adjusted to this so please bare with me. :) I decided I wanted to start a family blog for 2 reasons; #1. So I can write my thoughts out better, and #2. So I can look back and grow from what I've learned through past situations God has led me through. So that is why I'm starting this, plus its sorta fun! A diary I don't mind people reading:)
Well I suppose I should start at our beginning. Ben and I grew up in christian homes, he was home-schooled and I wasn't. I am the youngest of 4 with 3 older brothers, Ben is second of 4 with 2 brothers and a sister. We met one summer through some friends ,I believe we were around 13 or so, at the county fair where I showed some 4H animals. He was a goofy/funny kid who loved to joke around. I loved to have fun and laugh so we got along pretty well right from the start. Several years later we saw each other again and started dating and the rest is history:)
We've had our fair share of problems in our relationship that is for sure. One big thing that divided us for a long time was that Ben was a believer and I wasn't. It was difficult, loving each other but feeling an invisible wall separate us.
I grew up believing very different than him. I didn't believe in God's sovereignty. A lot of people don't, its a very self denying truth that God hasn't opened many eyes to see. ("Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump, one vessel for honorable use and another for dishonorable use?"-Romans 9:11. "But now, O LORD, you are our Father;we are the clay, and you are our potter; we are all the work of your hand."-Isaiah 64:8) I used to like to think of myself as in control and make God appear weak, which many people do. I use to look at all the bad things in my life as works of just the devil and all goodness works of God. If we look in the bible: many times God shows us over and over that he is in control of all things good or bad. He has showed us though that He can work through many people and avenues for His will. So yes, God is responsible for both good and evil(by working through the devil to bring about His will). Its a very hard truth to grasp, it goes against the grain as sinners we are consumed with ourselves. Its hard to be humble to God without Him intervening.
We met with a couple from church for a long time before we got married. They counseled, challenged, and taught us a great deal about living a God glorifying life and relationship. Meeting with them was hard for me at first because I didn't want to be selfless, but through them God opened my eyes to His truth. It changed my life forever. I thank God for blessing my life with such encouraging God loving people like the Edminstens! I'm so thankful for the many people that God has brought into my life that have helped me grow and encourage me!! All the loving people at my church are true blessings!!
Everyday I feel how insignificant I am, yet I feel God working in my life daily. He has given me since then many encouraging moments along with some very hard challenges, and I love Him more and more each day for every trial as well as the "mountain top" experiences. I could go on and on about how God has changed and worked in my life thus far!
Ben and I were only married 5 months when we discovered surprisingly that I was pregnant with our first baby. It was both exciting and scary at the same time but we knew that God was in control. Throughout my pregnancy I had a strange fear of preeclampsia. I was scared that I would develop this. Preeclampsia is manifested by a combination of; a rise in blood pressure, sudden swelling, and leaking of protein in the urine. Its the most common problem that can occur in pregnancy. If medical help does not act quickly it can be deadly for mother and child. At 29 weeks I was told I had developed preeclampsia(thank the Lord for giving me a "feeling" so that I researched on it). My condition got worse almost over night. I went from just having it to having a severe case of it. When the doctors felt it had reached its limit on me that any longer without medical intervening would be too dangerous, they immediately rushed me into the OR for emergency c-section. The baby wasn't in any danger, I was. Later we found out that the cord was wrapped twice around the baby's neck and if they had let me labor it would have tightened and my baby could have died. Thank God for His mercy! I'm not going to lie, that was the scariest moment in my life so far. I knew that God was in control but I felt like I was lost in shock and horror in my situation. I know if God wills me to endure that again I will pray to be a better witness and let go of all fear and trust more in Him. After all of that I just had another "feeling" that even though the baby was born very early that he would be okay and that God was working. And He was working because He gave my son strength to fight for 6 weeks til he was well enough to come home, but even if he had died I know that God was still working and that my son was still used for His will.
The struggles continue to this day through our life in this world. Ben just finished surgical assisting school, and felt good about his chances at getting a job that had been open. Everyone knows well enough how bad the economy and financial situations for many people are now. Our life was not immune to the world around us. Our finances have not been good and we're barely making it, God provided help from dear friends and loved ones has kept us a float. We got papers from our bank saying that if we didn't pay the mortgage that they were going to start foreclosure papers. It was really scary and sad all at the same time. At first all I could do was cry because we knew that if Ben didn't get the job that we would lose our home. "Its just walls", quoting a few friends, and its so true. After I got over my shock and tears I just started to pray, pray, pray and pray some more. And not for him to just get the job but for His will to be done because I know He's in control and He would provide something for us. Its so comforting and mind clearing to cry out to the Lord. I listened to some sermons and articles about anxiety from John Piper at desiringgod.org. He said something that I though was really good, " Casting your anxieties on God is part of humbling yourself, and it is hard to humble yourself as a sinner because it takes away from you and if we want to be humble we have to cast our anxieties to Him" And He answered, Ben found out that he got the job! Yay! Such answered prayers from a God of mercy!!
God's ways are so complex and we have no way of knowing, but to know that its His will. I often think of God's will like ripples in still water. One act, one single action of His preordained plans ripple out into many. He touches thousands with one action. We are merely pieces on the game board, so we can't see the big picture. We are so thankful for all that the Lord has blessed us with: encouraging friends/family, our home/job, beautiful baby boy, and many others! We're both excited to see where God leads us in this world, and pray continually that through it all we can magnify His glory!!