Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The surprise was a success!!

Yesterday my wonderful father turned 60 so I decided (several months ago) to drive home to surprise him. The surprise was a total success! Many family and friends were also able to join us for a wonderful fall evening! I drove alone through hours of downpours on the 400 mile journey, but God safely brought me to mom and dad's house! I will put up photos eventually!
I am now going to be staying with my parents and a college friend for the next week. While in Viking country I will be able to see friends from elementary school, high school, and college! Today I am off to do some tax free shopping... then going out to my favorite place to eat with my dear friend Jessi! Brandon is at home working this week, but I am confident our church family will take great care of him! Yes, I already miss him!
Time to eat lunch with my daddy!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Town house closed yesterday!!!

Over Brandon's four years of seminary we were so blessed to live in our cozy and delightful town house. During our time in seminary we met a wonderful agent who sold the home of a family I nannied for. Gloria loves the Lord and loves her clients! Many of you know the story of our house, but the ending is SO AWESOME that I need to recap the story!
1. Live in a great home for 4 years
2. Meet wonderful agent
3. Watch housing market FALL
4. Learn that no houses have sold in our sub-division in a year
5. Brandon becomes Sr. Pastor and will move in less than ONE month
6. Prep house for sale, PRAY, and go on 17 day family road trip (pray BOLDLY that house sells while traveling)
7. Pray through road trip and people look at the house
8. Receive a negative comment from potential buyer about "religious stuff" in the home... we keep praying!
9. Receive great offer on final day of road trip, house under contract within 18 hours at home!!!!!
10. Jump though inspection, appraisal, underwriter etc hoops which are hard in this market!
11. Close on house on September 15th 2009
12. Receive an email from wonderful agent l with this in it on September 16th: "I asked him (them) what they especially liked about the house, and they said that the condition impressed them-how lovely it showed-no clutter-and a presence of Christ. So, the Lord had His hand in this transaction from the very beginning. :) "
13 (an following) WE PRAISE GOD!!!!! All along my prayer has been that this home would be a place ministry until Jesus returns or it falls apart. I also prayed that someone would feel the presence of the Holy Spirit and not even be able to think about a home besides ours. Our great God who is rich in mercy has answered so many prayers in this home sale that I feel it has a testimony of its own!!!!
To God alone be the Glory!!!!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Feeling thankful!

I just updated my facebook status about my thankfulness and decided to share some ways I am thankful today with each of you!
1. We continue to have great weather here. I am really liking fall a lot more than summer mainly because it is oddly warmer now than it was in August!
2. I went on a walk with a lovely woman from church this morning and set up another walk date for next week. I am also going on the women's retreat this weekend. Please keep praying for a couple of really good connections!
3. Our air ducts were cleaned this morning! We found out that they were not quite as disgusting as we thought. I guess that since our carpet had never been cleaned the fibers were settling after the cleaning and that it why it seemed sooooo dusty. I asked the cleaning guy if I was crazy for wanting it cleaned and he said he thought it was a great idea. He showed me what came out of the ducts and I thought it was plenty disgusting!!!
4. Two blogging friends have had BIG days. One announced pregnancy and one had a offer accepted on a house. God is so faithful!
5. Yesterday was a massive laundry day and now my dirty piles are so tiny - great feeling!
6. I had a late night talk with my best girlfriend last night! Great conversation, great therapy!
7. Brandon has no meetings tonight! Looking forward to tasty dinner and some time together!
8. The past few days we have mourned with a family from church on a death in their family. I am thankful for Brandon's strength and pastoral heart through it all and for the dear family who became dear friends. I am also thankful that we do not grieve as those who have no hope! We know that M is in heaven now!!
9. We have received tons of information from the adoption agency we plan to use. There is A LOT to be done, but I am truly excited for it!
10. I am also thankful for many exciting things coming up. I have never liked the fall, but this year there is joy!!!
11. I am thankful for my Bible and the wonderful time I had reading James this morning!
So you see... in the midst of transition and messes there is much to be thankful for.

Happy New Year 2002

Yes I am serious!!! It is New Year's Eve in Ethiopia (about to be 2002) and they are just about to shout Happy New Year! Praying that 2002 in Ethiopia will be a great year for adoptions and specifically major progress on our baby coming home!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Moving Weekend #2

We continue to feel overwhelmingly blessed by friends and family during our transitions! Before I tell you about God's faithfulness and blessing I want you to know that not every day is filled with smiles from morning to night. Transition is hard at times. I mainly blog about the good, and recognize that it might seem we live in dream world. I have shed tears this week and I have had to call my mom for a calm down session, but... I want to share with you some ways that Our Great God has been faithful this week!
Yesterday we moved the furniture out of the town house and into a U-haul. We had the wonderful help of a dear couple from church. It was a long day, but we managed to get everything into the U-haul, truck, and car! The town house is empty and clean, but amazingly still looks cozy, homey, and peaceful empty! We walked from room to room saying good-bye to four years of memories. There were tears as we said bye to the nursery which never housed a baby! The tears were both of sorrow as I reflected on the battle, and joy as I thought about your our future family! I am a little thankful that airplanes will bring our babies home... not my labor! We sat in our empty living room for a final time of prayer. We prayed for our dear neighbors, (we got to say good-bye to most of them) for M the future home owner, and mostly we praised God for our great time in the home.
After a tearful good-bye Brandon and trailer headed north to the parsonage and I headed west to cheap groceries! Yes, after my local grocery store search I determined the items that are still twice the price here and stocked up! I then headed north...alone... in the dark. Actually I made it home with no problems, but wow there was a lot of traffic. I guess it was Friday night of a holiday weekend.
After my arrival home, we unpacked the car and the back of the truck and I ran upstairs to do what needed to be done after fluid intake and a long car ride... AND what I noticed while washing my hands was INCREDIBLE... the bathroom had been painted!!!!!!!!!!!! Yes friends, while we were packing, moving, and cleaning as amazing person in our church finished the top half of the kitchen, the laundry room, and the upstairs bathroom! I actually shed tears of joy! What a great way to end a long day.
This morning was the monthly men's breakfast at church. After eating the men came over to our house to unload the U-haul. There was such a great group of strong men here, that after 25 minutes EVERYTHING was unloaded! WOW!!!
Now the real fun begins (which is why I escaped to blog (: ) Today I hope to start actually putting a few things away. The living room, family room, and kitchen are not fully painted and the bedrooms have not been started, so it is a mix of putting things away and putting things "in holding" until they can really be put away!
Brandon is working hard this weekend. We had our first death in the church so there is much to do preparing for the funeral (I will post on this next week!) and for the Sunday service. Poor Brandon! It is a lot of work, but I believe he is gifted in it and the Lord blesses it! I try to be his cheerleader and help where ever I can. Mainly that means prayer, food, back rubs, and love!
Well, there is much to be done, and hiding in the guest bedroom won't check anything off of a list, so off I go!
I hope everyone has a wonderful Labor Day Weekend. Brandon will celebrate by "laboring" at the church (or home office) while I "labor" at home! We are so blessed by your prayers! Truly, I say over and over again, "God just answered a prayer that someone prayed on our behalf."

** One more thing that should bring a smile. I had a dream about your baby two nights ago. HE was around two in my dream and I was holding him in a basement family room (I have never seen the room) and he was saying mama and daddy when Brandon came down. He also was saying his name! It was SO real and he was so beautiful! Sad I had to wake up, but excited that means we are one day closer to Ethiopia!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

What a BEAUTIFUL day!

Today is one of those days that you just have to smile! God has been so faithful to Brandon and I, wow we are blessed! This morning has been super! It is a BEAUTIFUL day here, actually feels nice out! I had a great time studying God's word and praying this morning-what a wonderful morning date! I also went to coffee (well I didn't have any coffee but it was at coffee shop) with a wonderful woman from my church! She and I chatted and learned that we both have the same desires when it comes to health/medical issues. She told me all about her Dr. and I am sold! Thank you Lord for leading and directing the conversation! I actually spent all afternoon yesterday trying to find a local Dr. and had no real success. I was lamenting to Brandon last night that I didn't know how to find a natural all in one sort of guy and God blessed me the next day!
After our chat I went to get milk with a free milk coupon. Well, milk was on sale and instead of just free milk they give you the value of the coupon so I got a gallon of hormone free milk and a whole watermelon for 28 CENTS!!!! Time to pay bills and walk to the post office!
Hopefully I will get better at filling my blog with Godstories so we can all be reminded of the ways He is daily meeting our needs!