Welcome! Nuestra Casa Es Su Casa ...Our house is your house

A glimpse into the life of Daniel and Jaynee Lockwood and their 12 precious blessings. Thank you for visiting; we pray that what we share here may always bring glory to our wonderful God and Saviour. May you praise the Lord with us for the great things He has done and continues to do as we serve Him sharing the gospel here in the little town of Cuidad Insurgentes, BCS Mexico. He alone is good and faithful!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Wonderful Life...And Samuel's Surprise for Mommy

I almost feel normal! :) I'm sure anyone that "really" knows me would get a chuckle out of that...Jaynee...normal???....ha! :)
But I do feel soooo much better! Just waiting for my blood to catch up a bit...still tire easily, but how wonderful it is to mostly be back to doing what I love so much!
Yesterday evening, I was able to go to church...I missed being there so much and not only was it so good to see everyone, I was encouraged, convicted and blessed by Daniel's message too. He's my very favorite preacher in English and Spanish! :)
Yesterday, our littlest girl turned 5 years old! How is that even possible!?! Each birthday that comes reminds me to cherish all the more each day I have with them.
Susannah was very excited when she woke up as there was really "zero" days left as she had counted down the days for much of the month.
The girls helped me make a special b'day lunch and a couple of cakes to celebrate...one for our family party and another to take to church that evening to share.



I just loved this wrapping paper...Bb for burro, Cc for conejo, Jj for jirafa...


I had wanted to plan and make special decorations, but since I wasn't able to, the sibings took on making a special birthday banner :)


Susannah's favorite part of the meal...4 different kinds of soda to choose from!! :)


One of my favorite things to do is watch a child overflowing with excitment open a gift...


And to think how much more our Heavenly Father loves to give good gifts us!


Between services, the girls disappeared to play :)


And the boys rested/read :)


Yes, life is pretty much back to normal around here....






Oh...I forgot to tell you all...
The night I got home from the hospital, Samuel had something special to show me!
My last little baby started walking! And I wasn't even there to see it, the little stinker!
Oh, they grow up so fast, don't they? Thanking the Lord for each and every new day!

video

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Quick Update :)

We drove down to La Paz to see the doctor today. Stitches out. :) Pathology report came back with good results. Ultrasound done to check kidneys...all looks good. :)
I'm on the mend! :) Just weak and tired from the blood loss. The doctor told me to eat and drink well and rest much...physical excercise/work as I feel up to it but not to the point of exhaustion. He thinks in a couple of weeks, I'll feel like new :).

The greater the trial, the greater the blessing! Praising the Lord for all He has done, all he has taught me, and for just how wonderful He is!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Sharing my Heart Tonight About it All

While at the hospital yesterday, Daniel talked with two of my doctors about my "plumbing" issues :). They were concerned and sent Daniel home with a diuretic for me to take with the instructions to bring me straight back to the hospital if I got any worse or didn't improve by morning. The doctor called yesterday evening to see how things were "going" :).

Several trips and 5 liters later, I felt like a new person! :) And we learned that a liter of water weighs exactly 1 kilogram or 2.252 lbs. We just got off the phone again with the doctor tonight, and he was happy. He encouraged me to eat and drink well...a banana a day to keep up my potassium; fresh fruits and veggies; protein; and to stay well hydrated. If I continue to feel better, then I will go back down on Thursday to get my stitches out and to get checked.

I'm up walking and Hna. Tola made the most delicious chicken-vegetable and rice soup which was the perfect thing to finally perk my appetite! For a sweet tooth like me, it's been so weird not wanting to eat candy. (Don't worry, Joel...I'm sure it won't last long :). )

Whatever they did inside me sure hurts a lot more than my c-sections ever did! But it is amazing how I feel today versus how I felt last week. The Lord is SO good and how wonderfully our Creator made our bodies! Someday we will have new bodies too...glorious bodies like our Lord! Isn't He just wonderful!!

To answer a couple of questions that we've been asked...
The hospital (Central de Especialidades Medicas, La Paz), doctors, and nurses who attended me were wonderful! I was at the best hospital in our entire state; it is the same hospital where Daniel went to in May 2008 when he had been told he had gallbladder cancer (which he didn't!!).
The hospital is clean and has updated equipment. The doctors are all specialists in their fields and the level of care they gave me was so caring, professional, and I felt so safe. They took so much time with me, explained everything so well, and were there to answer any questions I had. Before we left, my main doctor gave us his cell phone and encouraged us to call if we had any questions or concerns at anytime...day or night. And he's called our house the past two nights just to check on me.
The nurses were so helpful and sweet. When I first got up to walk, I just had on my socks and the nurse ran to get me a comfy pair of new slippers. They were bright white...for the first hour I had them at least :). Daniel and I always step on eachother's feet.
The night I was so grave they were so very concerned. They stood around my bed watching me and caring for me for hours. They had one nurse sitting there the entire night long just to watch me and my vitals.
The accommodations were so nice too! Daniel was able to be with me the entire time. We had a private room, I had a very comfortable adjustable bed and Daniel had a nice comfortable couch right next to me. There was a large bathroom with shower in the room and we had phone and Internet.

I know many were concerned that first night I was hurting so badly and they had not given me any pain medication. I was concerned too :) Ha! It was by far the worst thing I have ever felt in my life. A day or so after I had stabilized, the doctors came in to explain things and we finally understood why the first night was so hard. They really were not sure if I was going to make it. I had lost so much blood and my blood pressure was so low and so many other things they were concentrating fully on keeping me alive. They were concerned that another drug in my system just might push an extremely delicate situation over the edge.
But the best part is that night, Daniel asked you all to pray for me. I didn't even know it, but I do remember at one point feeling like I just could not take it anymore (not sure what I would have done about it...I don't think I could have really gone anywhere :) ) and I was trying to pray and it just hurt too much to pray and I called Daniel over and asked him to please pray for the pain. I remember him holding my hand and I remember him starting to pray. I don't remember the prayer...Daniel said as soon as he finished, I fell asleep for about a half an hour. Isn't the Lord so good? And when I think of how I felt that night and then imagine all Jesus suffered for me...not for anything He had done, but for all that I have done...and HE suffered so He could give me all that He deserved and as He took all that I deserved...Oh, what a loving, amazing Friend! So my pain is a reminder to me of His pain; I just want to be counted worthy to suffer for Him too.

You know, the Lord's hand was so clearly seen through each step we took. Since it was going to be a simple d and c, I just wanted to go to the small hospital in the next town over from us with my local doctor. It was so much closer, less expensive, and I didn't see the need to go to the better hospital for something so routine. But God knew. And Daniel didn't want me to go to the hospital here in town. He insisted we go to La Paz and I'm so glad I wasn't stubborn enough to change his mind (he says there wasn't a chance I could have anyways :) ), for I don't think I would be here typing this right now if I had.

I appreciate so much the love, concern and prayers for my heart (emotionally) knowing that yes, our little Samuel will always be our baby...our last child. You are all so thoughtful and caring to think of me and pray for not only physical healing but for my heart as well and I thank you so much.
But I want to give testimony to one of the first things I shared with Daniel once I was coherent enough to have a conversation. For the last couple of years, as I have gotten older, I knew that one day, we would have our last. And when I would think of it, it would always give a twinge of pain to my heart. After we lost this last pregnancy, I felt the Lord's closeness like never before as I grieved. And then, the past month, every time I looked at Samuel, I felt the Lord telling me that he was going to be my last. And surprisingly to me, rather than that twinge of sadness, I felt complete peace. It was as if the Lord specially prepared my heart ahead of time.
I have always loved having babies. From our first night of marriage until now, we have always wanted to let the Lord give us however many children He wanted us to have. And we prayed many, many times as to that decision and just wanted to follow Him as He led us. And we have just the children He gave to us.
I always wanted to have many, many children...it wasn't having a bunch of children that worried me when I was young; I always had to ask Him to help me be content if wanted me to only have 1 or 2 or none :). As years went on, that worry soon was a distant memory as our children came so close together. And now, at 37, we have finished that blessed stage of life. And we have 12...and I love them all so much and thank the Lord each day for giving me Timothy, Elijah, Rebekah, Benjamin, Abigail, Isaiah, Josiah, Noah, Susannah, Nehemiah, Eliseo, and Samuel...and for their most handsome, wonderful daddy too! I am sooo very blessed. And I couldn't be happier! Well, maybe I will be tomorrow...because every day with Jesus is sweeter than the day before.
Do you know Him? Is He your Jesus? He wants to be so badly! If you don't know Him and you want to, we'd love to tell you how He can be yours and you can be His very own. Are you lonely, hurting, lost, unloved? He understands for He suffered all those things too.

Maybe you don't have a family who loves you or one to love...He wants to make you part of HIS family! And just to be His own child! And to have brothers and sisters in Christ who become so dear to you.
One of the sweetest parts of this trial has been feeling so loved by my Lord and so loved by my brothers and sisters in Christ.
For years and countless times, we've been asked, "How many children are you going to have?" I've never had a "number". But you can ask me now...the Lord gave us 12! We've got the 3 big boys, the 3 middle boys, the 3 little boys, and the 3 girls. Just perfect! And there is nothing better than a family...loving, playing, working, sharing, caring. God is SO faithful and SO good!


PS- Daniel just read my post and said, "Jaynee, you have a lot of "so's" in there." :) Ha! SO I do :)

Monday, September 20, 2010

Monday Morning Update

2 Corinthians 12:9-10
"And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong."

What a beautiful verse...one that has become so dear to me ever since we have been on the field and even more so this past week. I'm so thankful for God's Word.

I just wanted to give a quick update this morning. We got home Saturday night...what a blessing to ride not only in a car that had a reclining seat but one with a/c...a very unexpected blessing! It was a very comfortable ride home and I'm so very thankful.

Daniel had all the children sit down in the living room and then brought me in. I will remember forever each of those sweet, warm 12 hugs I received. Then we all talked about what had happened, shared what the Lord had done, how so many were praying and let them ask questions. Their questions were so sweet and so sincere and what child like faith. We then all went around the room and took turns praying.

We went to bed and a couple hours later, Nehemiah crawled into my bed and a couple minutes later, we found out he had the stomach flu. By the next day, several of the children were down. Admittedly, it was a bit discouraging, but even when all I wanted to do was cry, I continued to think of how all things work together for good to them that love God and clung to that throughout the day. It was a long day...Daniel had to be at church all day, but he brought dear Hna. Tola over and she stayed all day long and helped take care of well, most everything since I am not very helpful right now :). The children woke up much better this morning and Hna. Tola will be here all day each day this week. I'm so thankful for her help and so thankful for my husband making sure I'm taken care of when he can't be here.

Daniel went back to La Paz this morning because he has to pay the remainder of our hospital bill, return Rick his car and pick up our truck, and...should I really say this...Daniel said I should...he has to drop off my uterus at the lab. Yes, my uterus has been in a jar in our bedroom this entire weekend. It needs to go to pathology, and the patient is responsible for delivering it, but the lab was closed over the weekend when we got discharged and they didn't give it to us until then.
Well, at least we had time to tell it good bye. :) Don't make me laugh...it hurts my tummy :)

I'm feeling weak but the pain is better. My main concern right now is that I am not eliminating fluids as I should. Please pray this issue resolves. I get a bad pressure headache anytime I lay down too. We called the doctor last night and he gave us a prescription and told me to drink even more. Early this morning I drank another 600 ml. but nothing has come out and I feel all the more swollen and full. The doctor told us to call later today if things don't start resolving. So please continue to pray.
I'm scheduled to have my stitches removed on Thursday and the wound looks clean for which we are thankful.

Those couple days where things were so grave and all I could do was lay in bed, moan and pray as I could, a little bird with a bright yellow head came to my window. And he stayed there for almost an hour pecking on the glass, flying around, looking in the room. My eyes filled with tears and I told Daniel that God sent that little bird just to remind me that He loves me and is caring for me and is right by my side. Just a few minutes later, Daniel opened the computer to read me the new comments and someone had typed out the entire song of His Eye is On the Sparrow. I can't tell you what a special encouragement that was! I cried as I listened and drank in each word.
Thank you so much for your love, encouragement, and prayers. How wonderful is the body of Christ! How faithful and good is our Lord!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

We're Home

I thought I would write a quick post to say that we are home and Jaynee is resting in her own bed. She still has a lot of abdominal pain... she is very swollen, but we are hoping that that will go down after the next few days. Please keep praying for her as she regains her strength.
I want to thank Rick from La Paz for his kindness in loaning us his Yukon so that Jaynee could go home comfortably and with A/C. Jaynee gets car sick and even more when it is hot. When we left the car thermometer said 100 degrees. It has been such a blessing to meet other missionaries there in La Paz and to have that kind of trust. The first time I ever met Rick, he was loaning me his car... that is Christian community, the bond and sweet spirit that Christians have in Christ. That was so generous, and Jaynee was so thankful. We were praising the Lord on the way home.
We met 6 new American missionaries while we were down there, and we talked about having a future activities together. Funny how God works. :-)
Well, again we thank you for your prayers and care for Jaynee. Everybody was so good to get the word out and let others know. And thank you Rick for letting us use your car.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Sweet Home

This is Jaynee :)

The doctor came in to check me this morning and I gave him my best smile and my most hopeful "Can I go home today" face and he said when my doctor comes in this afternoon to check me, if all looks well, we can head back home. :) To just think of all that happened on Wednesday and now to think I might be going home today, I just think how amazing the Lord is and how he hears and answers our every prayer.

Please pray for the trip home. I'm still quite sore and we just had come down in our little pick up truck (since we had NO idea what was ahead of us) and the seat does not at all recline. It's a very hot day here too, so while I know this sounds so trivial in light of all that has happend, I know the Lord cares for even the little things and that means so much. Pray I don't get car sick (which I often do) since I can't imagine how it would feel to "lose lunch" with my sore stomach.

I'm just looking forward to gently (key word :) ) hugging my all of my children and while I know it will be quite a while till I'm back on my feet, just to be out of the hospital and home...how sweet is that word. How much sweeter will our heavenly home be some day...no more pain, tears, sorrow, sin, or hurts...But I'm so glad the Lord has let me be here to serve Him here on earth for a bit longer. He is so faithful and good!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Reaction to Antibiotics

Jaynee just had a brief reaction to the medicine, which actually caused a red line to run up her skin along her vein. But they stopped it right away, and right now they are trying to figure out the cause of it. Jaynee is allergic to penicillin, but it is not penicillin based, so everybody was kind-of scratching their heads. However, she has been feeling great. The doctors say if she continues to do well she might be able to go home tomorrow. PTL! Keep her in your prayers. We have appreciated all your very kind and encouraging comments.

Daniel wants to post this :)

Always in His Hands

Thanking the Lord for another new day! You have no idea how much the outpouring of love and prayers for me have meant! When I am stronger, I want to share more, but for now, I just want to say I love you and that I love our good and faithful Lord so much. Thanking Him for my husband's never ending care of me here, thanking Him for Hna. Tola caring for my children knowing they are in good hands, and thanking Him for another beautiful day.

I sort of look like a marshmallow...have retained a lot of fluids! :) Thought that would make you all smile :). Please continue to pray for no infection and no internal bleeding.

How close God holds us and how wonderful to just crawl into His lap and rest.

It's a new day!

Jaynee got up this morning and walked for the first time since the whole ordeal started. She didn't get too dizzy, that's good. She's was able to get cleaned up which I know will make her feel a lot better. She is standing up, an in a little bit they will take her for an ultra sound, they want to make sure that there is no internal bleeding. Pray for clarity and wisdom on the part of the doctors... pray especially for NO internal bleeding

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Thank you For Your Prayers

Right now Jaynee is resting well. She still has much abdominal pain, but the pains meds allow her to rest. Her color is better, blood pressure was up to 107 over 70 (although it dropped a bit later), they have given her two more units of blood bringing the total to 5.
She is stable, but delicate. Please pray that she gains strength, and doesn't get any kind of infection. The doctors seem happy overall.

She's Looking Better.

Jaynee is in good spirits, but still in a lot of pain. She has a lot of needle pricks, because it is hard for the nurses to actually get into her veins. I think she told me that she has had 28 needle pricks, which makes her wince a bit more each time. They are now giving her plasma, three bags. something to do with the blood. I'll let you know more when I know more

She Seems to be Doing Better

One of the things Jaynee was worried about was internal bleeding due the great pain. Turns out the doctors were thinking the same thing. But due to her hemoglobin levels (rising and not falling) they do not believe this is the case. They believe that the pain is coming from tendons normally attached to the uterus, that were stretched to a different area. It turns out that this is where all her pain has been coming from,... stretched tendons. So that looks positive.
She has had 8 natural births and 4 c-sections, and 3 miscarriages, and she said this was the most pain she has ever had. It must be bad.
She is swelling a lot due to the quantity of liquids (IV's), and uncomfortable. but on the bright side she looks much better than she did 24 hours ago. Pain is now under control, she is sleeping restfully. The doctor seems pleased with her progress. He told me the surgery story... wow! The Lord has really been watching over her, she could have easily lost her life. Please continue to pray as she recovers.

Her blood type

Jaynee's blood type is A-. My blood type is O+, I am unable to donate. I just went to the blood bank, and talked to them, they said I need to find 5 people with A- blood to replace what Jaynee has used. Remarkably, the Doctor had ordered more blood and the blood bank said they didn't have any more, but after talking to them they "came up" with another one that was supposed to go to someone else??? (It's Mexico don't ask, I don't get it either). The good news is that Jaynee is going to get what she needs now. Now pray that I can find people with the right blood, today. They have to donate tomorrow at 8:00

Need Blood

The Doctor just informed me that the blood bank is saying that in order for me to get more blood for Jaynee, I need to get about 14 people to donate blood here in La Paz. Pray that I can find that many donaters here.
Si por casualidad hay alguien leyendo esta pagina que vive en La ciudad de La Paz, pido que me ayuden con donar sangre para mi esposa. Me puedes contactar por celular (045) 613-105-8420
Jaynee just told me to tell you, "the Lord is faithful and good".

Doctor says its still grim

The Doctor just pulled me aside and says she is still very grave, her hemoglobins are at 6.7 which Jaynee says is very low. Please pray for her pain, she can't hardly bear it, and the shot they give her every 12 hours wears off after 2-3 hours. He said it is still very serious. Thank you for continued prayers. Jaynee has asked me several times if I think she is going to make it. She has felt pretty horrible.
They have decided to give her more blood.

Sweet Dreams

After so much pain, she just got an intramuscular pain medicine shot, and was asleep within minutes. Pray that she will get lots of much needed sleep. She is doing so much better now, thanks be to the Lord for His healing, and His amazing design of our body. We are very thankful to have access to good doctors, who are really tools in the Lord's hand. even if it is 3 hours away. It is interesting that we are sitting in the same hospital were I lay 2 years ago, on May 23rd 2008... although this time she was "trying to die", :-).
Life is so fragile, sometimes we have the arrogance to think that we are in control, only God can give and take life. As Job said (and many of you have mentioned).. the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away, blessed be the name of the Lord.
You know a lot of things happen on the mission field that affect the missionary, that we never write about or share. Recently a man choked to death in the street, it was the first time I ever saw a man die. No one would help him, two police men standing by watching told everybody to stay back, even they didn't know how to help... they did nothing. I was picking people people up for church. When I arrived I was shaking... I wept. I composed myself and asked the congregation how many people have to die without being told. For 2 months in our town people started dying all over (about 10 different people), almost all of them I knew, about 6-7 I had witnessed to personally, but several I had not, and that bothered me. We are all going to die someday, where will you go after you die. That is the most important question that can be asked this side of eternity. Do you know Christ, do you believe in Him? He is the way and truth and the life, no man cometh unto the Father except through him. Are you prepared? He paid the price that we owed. Jaynee is ready, her eternity is secure through Jesus Christ our Saviour. How about you? Do you believe God's promises? He will save you if you will only believe and call upon Him.
We are so thankful for your prayers and concern, please continue as the Lord leads.

Her Color is Better

Jaynee was able to sleep about half of the night, so she did get some rest. She has a new kind of pain that anybody who has ever had abdominal surgery can understand...trapped air. She can't seem to get it out and it causes great pain.
On the good side, her color has greatly improved after receiving the 3 units of blood, and her blood pressure seems much more stable. If I remember correctly, her blood pressure was about 70 over 40. I don't understand those numbers but maybe some of you do. Thank you so much for the prayers through the night. I've talked to the kids and Hna Tola (the babysitter) and things appear to semi-normal at home... :-) whatever semi- normal is with 12 kids :-). I'll try to keep the blog updated throughout the day on any progress.
A special thank you to my mother in law, Becky Smith, my mom, sister in law Amber Lockwood, and several different pastors who have all been a special encouragement. Also Jaynee's Uncle Ron who made me laugh last night for the first time. Thank you so much to each and every one of you who have prayed, it is so comforting to know so many Christians around the world are praying for my wife. What a blessing!
Oh and yes, she did finally get her pain medicine. Although she still hurts badly, it did take the edge off.

Still Very Critical

Again I thank you for praying and urge you to continue as God leads and prompts you. A couple hours ago Jaynee began to have difficulty breathing and "wasn't feeling right" apparently her blood pressure was getting really low, dangerously low. She is still in very critical condition. She said that she was in the most amount of pain that she has ever been in... I think that may caused (at least in part) the dip in her blood pressure.
They finally got her some medicine. Please keep her uplifted in prayer!! She is not out of the woods yet.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Update

Thank you for all the prayers. Jaynee now knows what happened, but she is still very groggy. She is now on her 2nd unit of blood. They still haven't given her the meds for pain that she asks for. Apparantly blood transfusions, and pain meds don't mix. If you would, just pray that God would take the edge of her pain, He is more capable than any medicine is! We just prayed for that specifically, and she's been asleep ever since. That's good.
I told Timothy and our church here, so they were praying. Again thanking you for praying.

Brief Update

Thank you for your prayers and encouraging comments. Jaynee is resting and recieving her first unit of blood, but in a tremendous amount of pain. When she stirs she keeps saying "mucho dolor" (great pain), and then tells me she needs medicine, that she can't handle the pain. They can't mix the pain medicine with the blood transfusion so she has to wait for 2 hours.
Thank you for caring. Jaynee is always the one caring for others, now she needs our prayers

Urgent Prayer Need

Dear Readers,
This is Daniel Lockwood. I thought I would let you know briefly of an urgent situation. I am currently sitting in a hospital in La Paz, waiting for Jaynee to return to her room. She is very delicate right now.
As you may know Jaynee had a misscarriage over a month ago, but the misscarriage never completed (another words the baby was still inside), but because there was no fever, pain or other signs of infection, Jaynee really wanted to wait it out to see if it would "complete" naturally. After almost 6 weeks, nothing had happened. So yesterday evening we decided to come to La Paz where there is better medical attention. Her appointment was at 8:00 a.m. After preparing her for the D&C, and praying together, they wheeled her into the quirofano (where they do surgeries).
After about an hour the nurse told me the Dr. needed to see me. He said that she was hemorrhaging badly and that they had to remove the uterus to stop the bleeding. I told them to do whatever they needed. What was supposed to be a fairly routine 20 minute procedure, turned into a 4 hour life and death surgery.
After the surgery they told me that she was stable. Apparently she had a placenta acreta which means that the placenta had grown into the tissue of the uterus, when they scraped it off, she began hemorrhaging.
She lost about 3 quarts of blood. She is very pale, in a great pain. As I was writing this post they just wheeled her in. Jaynee still does not know any of what I have told you. Please pray for her as you read this. We have a very BIG GOD who loves us immensely. For several hours I really thought I was going to loose her, but she is truly the Lord's. I praise the Lord for His protection.
Please pray for her recovery, and for the children. The Dr. said they are going to give her 3 units of blood every 4 hours. Pass the word around so that more will pray

Saturday, September 11, 2010

First Week of School

Tuesday, September 7, 2010. The first day of our 2010-2011 school year here in the Lockwood home! And we are so excited and so thankful! We have seen such sweet and amazing answers to prayer in preparing for this year and we feel so very blessed.

This is the latest I have started a school year in a llooonnnggg time! When Timothy was a little thing, I remember always starting the day after Labor Day; it seemed like a perfect end to summer and a great time to begin. But as the children grew in grade level and number, I began to start earlier as it always seemed we needed those early weeks to get a jump start on the year in order to finish our goal by summer.
In recent years, we have started early and still finished later than we'd planned. So when it was inevitable that we'd have to start this year later than I'd hoped, I told Daniel that maybe we'll start late and end early! Wouldn't that be a change! :)

Oh, but we just love school! I love to see the children learning, growing and so excited about each new day and what it will bring. The children look forward to each new day, each new page, and even when it is difficult and it seems they will "never be able to understand", what joy to my heart as well as theirs to see them persevere and with the Lord, overcome those obstacles!

I finished our school schedule a couple weeks ago and with the new schedule in the front of their binders, the children referred to it regularly the first few days, but by the end of the week were moving smoothly through each activity without me having to direct their every step. We still have a couple of areas that need readjusting (what looks great on paper isn't always practical when put into practice :) ), but overall, we are just so thankful for how the Lord directed and helped us in putting it together.

I took lots of pictures our first day! :) Usually, I'm so busy teaching and supervising during the day, I don't have time to take pictures, but I always try to keep the camera close by me our first day to get some shots. These I want to print up and put into their binders when they get filed away at the end of the year.

In praying about our schooling and about my schedule, the Lord clearly led and opened the doors for the answers. Hna. Tola, a dear widow lady who has been in our church since almost the beginning, needed a job. The Lord opened the doors for her to begin working here in our home. What an amazing blessing she has been! She arrives early, helps make breakfast, does some general cleaning and laundry, and makes lunch while I continue working with the children. And it's wonderful to have so much Spanish being spoken in our home! She's so thankful to be able to work, to be indoors, and to have a Christian environment. She is like a grandma to our children and we just love her and her grandson Ivan so much.

Each year, while I feel more comfortable in some ways with the teaching, scheduling, problem solving areas of home schooling, I feel more and more the deep need for the Lord. I need His grace, wisdom, strength and help each day. I feel so weak and inadequate sometime, but as I read in I Corinthians 1 each early morning this week, when we are weak, He is strong.
How quick I can take glory for the "good" that happens. He is the only One who deserves glory! And I want our lives to bring glory to our wonderful Savior! The other chapter I've been meditating on is I Corinthians 13. How I want my life to be filled with love for my Lord and others. How I want our lives to shine Christ's love to a hurt, crying, lost world. How I want us to reach out to help, encourage, and uplift others and point them to the One who will carry them, bind their wounds, and heal their hearts. Praise the Lord for His Salvation!

Here's a little glimpse into our first day...it didn't run perfectly as planned, but it was just the best!

Every child gets a binder for the year where they keep the years work. We buy the ones with the clear plastic covers so they can decorate it as they'd like. The day before we started school, I handed out a new schedule to each school child to keep in their binders and we went over it together so they would know what to do and I could answer any questions they might have at first.

First day of school pictures. It was overcast that morning (very rare for here!) and it was extra bright outside, so a few of the children were squinting (think getting up extra early + bright :) ), but I think they are just so handsome/pretty/cute all the same :)

Timothy- 13

Elijah- 12

Rebekah- 11

Benjamin- 10

Abigail- 9

Isaiah- 8

Josiah- 7

Noah- 6

Susannah- almost 5

Nehemiah-3

Eliseo- 2


And we can't forget little sleepy Samuel :)

Reciting verses together

Rebekah's favorite time of her schedule each morning...teaching the little ones :) She does wonderful at it; it is amazing what she has helped them learn!
This little guy loves his mega blocks...they keep him happily busy for quite some time.
Phonics review
Algebra
Math
Pre-school

Lunch Break! Peanut Butter and Honey Sandwiches :)

Time playing together

Nehemiah planting his beans

So much to learn!
Timothy and Elijah have been running all week for PE...they've been extra hungry!
What a blessing to work, play, study, and pray together...what a blessing to be a family!

Monday, September 06, 2010

Wanting to Give What I Could







A couple of weeks ago, my grandpa passed away. This past weekend, I boarded a plane and flew north to attend his memorial service. Seeing all the pictures of his life and hearing person after person share stories and testimonies of who he was and what he did to bless their lives, my heart just soaked it all in.

Grandpa served the Lord as a pastor for 45 years. He had served in the Army Air Corps during WWII and after his discharge, he became a very successful insurance agent. He was making very good money and was the top in his field in the entire country, but he could not shake the unrlenting tug of God calling him into the ministry, so thus he followed and obeyed the call of his Lord.

But what impressed me most about Grandpa was how much he loved people. I sat for hours Saturday with tears in my eyes hearing story after story of how Grandpa touched others lives.

During the memorial service, they had a time when anyone who wanted could come forward and share a memory about Grandpa or just share what he meant to them. I didn't know that they were going to do this and so I didn't have anything prepared. But as I sat there hearing one after another come up to share, my mind began to fill with what I would say if I could. I was so very nervous. There were so many people there and I sometimes get nervous just playing piano or teaching children's Sunday School in our little church here. I didn't even realize how much I was shaking until my cousin's wife who was sitting next to me reached over and gently placed her hand on my knee.
As my thoughts quickly gathered, I prayed and asked the Lord for help. I asked Him if He wanted me to share that He would give me that peace and give me the courage to take that first step out of my seat.

Finally the thought came to me that I was never able to give very much to my Grandpa, but on this day, I wanted to give him what I could...all that was in my heart.
I don't remember word for word what I said, but I want to write down what I remember.
I am the oldest granddaughter of my Grandpa and mommy to 12 of his 20 great grandchildren.
I am so thankful to be able to be here today at his memorial service.
I remember the summer I was 12 turning 13 that I spent at Grandpa and Grandma's house. That time was one of my most wonderful childhood memories! I had so much fun and loved them both so much. I'm so thankful for the time I had with them that summer.
I remember this church building so well. Grandpa was pastoring here that summer and I remember a funny story I want to share. One service, it was time to serve communion. I had taken communion in my Baptist church, but never in a Lutheran one. Grandma told me I could take it, so I went forward when our row was called. I knelt down in the front and first Grandpa passed out the bread and but rather than passing out little individual cups for the grape juice like we did in my church, Grandpa went person to person having each sip out of one large cup. It was my turn, and I took quite a large sip and as soon as it hit my tongue, I realized that the grape juice was not grape juice...it was wine! It surprised me so much, I spit it right back out into the cup! :) I can only imagine what my Grandpa must have thought; he never mentioned it and I don't think I brought it up either. When I got back to my seat, Grandma was chuckling and handed me a package of breath mints. :)
**
Sadly, after that summer, I don't have any more memories of my Grandpa or Grandma. But as I have sat here today and heard the many testimonies shared, I know Grandpa was a man of prayer. And I praise the Lord so much knowing how much my Grandpa prayed because in January of this year, I was able to see my Grandpa again for the first time in almost 25 years. And it was as if we had never been apart. He got to meet his great grandson, little 2 year old Eliseo too. What a joyous, blessed reunion it was! He hugged me, cried, and told me how much he missed me and loved me.
We live in Mexico about 800 miles below the USA border where we serve the Lord as missionaries. My Grandpa, who I'm sure didn't know very much about computers, took the time and effort to email me. And I have every one of those emails. He told me how proud he was of me and how much he loved me. And in the last email he ever sent me before he got too sick to write, he encouraged me to always love, forgive, and reach out to help others. What true words that I want to always follow. I'm so thankful for the Lord Jesus Christ and the salvation we have through Him alone. I know how much Grandpa loved music and loved to sing, and someday, we will all be together in the presence of the Lord forever and I want to hold Grandpa's hand and sing next to him before the Lord.