blessings and departure

Sometimes life just really throws curve balls…

I have been numbering blessings with Ann

#1 A family quilt on the Chiver’s side, Grammy made pillows out of it and gave them out. A piece of family history a reminder of where in California I am from.
#2 A little elephant reminder that Tina bought for me at the Rise and Shine retreat. It’s message is do not let the elephant in the room go unnoticed. Deal with whatever it is that is being ignored and grow through the process.
#3 Cabinets made after the flood in June of 2008 for our kitchen, a blessing, filling me with a reminder of that flood and how God brought us through and back home. Also a reminder to be thankful for the current flooding waters that are now receding.

PICTURES I LIKE!!!!!!!!!6

#1 The way she laughed today in the car when we were on our way home from SMAC playing at Independence.
#2 Her mustache is always better or so she says!!! -LOL
#3 The face he makes when he makes the most terrible noise in the world! And the laughter that followed from the back seat of the car.

 SMAC SONG & Pics

I am only on day two of counting when…

I feel the bed move like someone just laid down next to me when I am taking my afternoon nap. It’s the tree man husband his eyes are full of concern and with worried anticipation when I open my eyes to look at him. He tells me that our new brother in law’s father was just found, he had hung himself in the garage. My heart sunk. Sadness runs in. We heard the sirens in the neighborhood. We heard the sounding alarm and never knew it was an arrow to the hearts of our loved ones.

I am overwhelmed with the wash of what that must feel like until I remember…

It was 1996 on a beautiful summer morning I got a phone call from my mother. It was my Godfather. The man who spoke words of encouragement. The man who let me sing and never let me worry about how it sounded but taught me how to joy in the singing. He was a confidant, a friend, and I loved him. His name ….Richard. A neighbor had seen water coming out of the appt. and called 911 after no one had answered the door. They found him in the bath tub. Drowned, Pills near by. I was devastated.

I reach for my tree man and we just begin to pray, because with pain there is only God, only His healing can cover that.

I had been reading 1000 gifts by Ann Voskamp …and this passage comes back to me…

I awaken to the strange truth that all new life comes out of the dark places, and hasn’t it always been? Out of darkness, God spoke forth teeming life…..All new life labors out of the very bowels of darkness. That fullest life itself dawns from nothing but Calvary darkness and tomb-cave black into the radiance of Easter morning. Out of the darkness of the cross. the world transfigures into new life. And there is no other way. Then..yes? It is dark suffering’s umbilical cord that alone can utter new life. It is suffering that has the realest possibility to bear down and deliver grace…He makes everything work out according to his plan….Eph 1:11

Grace… asking God, redeem the pain that has come, as only You can.

and I struggle –how is this plan???– I don’t understand and I beg for eyes to see.

And I remember…

It was at his funeral that someone stood and said they presented Richard with the gospel and he had accepted. That was the first time I had felt hope. After that I spent all summer chasing joy, chasing love, chasing something to fill me up. Until one day high on pot and meth and at the end of my rope. I called out to God under a moon lite sky and…. ask Are you there? If you are real will you change my life? Two days later I got a call from my sister – whose name is Joy – she says I’m pregnant will you come out to visit. I took as a sign…a change. I sold what belongings I had, I quit drugs cold turkey, bought a bus ticket to Iowa…and never came back home. Instead I found a man who loves me, I met Jesus, I started a family and my life was never the same…

Is there a plan?? I would say yes….It is suffering that has the realest possibility to bear down and deliver grace… hindsight is a way to see what God is up to when we are neck deep in life it is just hard to breathe, looking back reminds us of How good He has been when we feel wrecked!

I pray and in hopeful believing that through the pain and death, that loved ones who don’t know Jesus, call to Him. I pray that somehow grace finds every crack in broken hearts and bears the weight for them. That new life springs forth into radiant light even if I cant see it yet….even if they don’t know it yet. That God does what only He can do….

Comfort and Revive the hurting, the weak , the weary and the lost.

Hearts heavy…….

and God is at work.

-Starla

linking with:

ImperfectProse

update:

Ps… the littlest one (age 8) who’s father is now gone has asked to know Jesus and be baptized!! -Thank you Jesus

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31 Day Challenge – 6 Day

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*FIND SAVINGS

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1. We have sage, oregano, garlic chives,

thyme, spearmint, and rosemary.

and we hung the ones that need to dry

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We also pulled Rhubarb, cherry tomatoes,

bell pepper, celery, and radishes.

2. Ok so it cool enough for sweaters today but not cold enough to turn the furnace on in my opinion. I am the only one who freezes since I am originally from California. So I busted out my little space heater that kicks on once in a while to warm me :0)

*USE WHAT’S HERE

1. Remember all those apples from earlier this week that we cut and got ready to can…

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Husband put them through the squeezer ….APPLESAUCE!

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oh and the apple juice is pretty good too! :0)

*SPEND LESS

My husbands Uncle Ron came to town and he took us out for lunch – BLESSING!! ;0)

Then we entered the BAKERY!!! duhduhduhn!!

Husband loves goodies…so since we have done so well this week on savings we got some treats! :0) Only spent 16 bucks..

we took some home!!

Go to Day 7-8 here

Joyful Blessings

JoyfulSoundOff

linking with Ann for Monday Multitudes

171.  Naps on a Saturday afternoon

172. Not being tied to a schedule for one day and eating toast for dinner..lol

173. Reading free books on my tablet using a kindle app .. YEAH!!

174. Helping our Youth Pastor

175. Making it through a difficult situation

176. Rain to grow the garden

177. Coffee with my Grandma

178. Ladies asking for my time — so blessed to have so many friends.

179. Certain bills being finished adding dollars to the budget.

180. Knowing there is none like Christ who loves me completely.

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Thank you Lord for always accepting me, believing the best of me, and knowing my heart. -starla

JoyFull Blessings

JoyfulSoundOff

linking with Ann for Monday Multitudes

151. Launching into HEART PASSION

152. Putting more focus into Friendships of Love

153. Midnight Dodge ball tournament with the youth

154.  staying up 24 hours for 5 of our youth rededicate their lives  to Christ after the message about living wrong while saying you know HIM.

155. Sleep

156. Eggs and cheese and toast

157. Helping my little man be more independent. Making peanut butter and honey all by himself!

158. A rainbow over my moms house

( photo taken by my sister Joy)

159. Cleansing rains

160. new toys!! ( tell you about it later)

STARLA