Monday, August 18, 2014

Thank You

"And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful."  Colossians 3:15

All weekend I kept thinking, I really need to say thank you. 

There are so many wonderful people in my life, friends and family who love me so much.  It will be difficult to properly acknowledge every blessing.  But, I will try.

And this is just for this weekend!

First of all, I want to thank all of my praying readers.  Thank you for sharing comments and links, encouragement and your own experiences. Ever since my last post went "viral"  ( defined by exceeding 100 page views.  Matt Walsh, I am not. )  I have had a great sense of peace.  I know there were, and still are, many people praying for me.  And I thank you all.  Never discount the power of prayer.  The tiniest old lady, bedridden by a stroke, unable to communicate to the world around her, could very well be the mightiest prayer warrior in the Kingdom .  Prayer really does change things!  

My husband has seen me at my kicking and screaming worst, and he still loves me!  Thank you, Rob. You have been there through the very best of times and the very worst of times.  Thank you for frying chicken and making ice cream when I refused to because the mess paralyzed me.  Thank you for cleaning the kitchen on the nights when I hid in the closet.  And thank you even more for teaching our boys how to clean the kitchen.  I absolutely do not have the nerves to teach that myself, right now.  It ranks up there with On The Job Bomb Defusing Training.  I'm just not brave enough.  You are my hero.

My mom is an amazing lady.  We've been through a lot together.  She has always been there for me.  Not easy, when she is the hub of a large family.  But I know I can count on her.  She has been there for the birth of each baby.  She let me move in when Rob had to go to New York for a summer.  She dropped everything and drove four hours to the Panhandle once, because I was homesick.  Thank you so much, mom.  I am continuously learning from you.  And now I know why you took such long showers when we were kids!

One of these days, Susan and I will be on top of the world at the same time.  Then, watch out world!  We will be unstoppable.  But until then, we sort of ride this see-saw together.  The one that is up encourages the one that is down.  Meeting with the Body of believers Wednesday night left me so encouraged.  Thursday body slammed me.  On Friday I felt like I had been hit by a truck.  I have these mysterious fevers.  It's different than being sick.  Tylenol doesn't really help.  The more depressed or the more advanced I am in PMS, the higher it usually is.  On the months when I am doing well, I don't have it at all.  On Friday it was consistently at 100.  Susan came over and literally put me to bed.  She pried the shoes off my feet.  (I wear bright fuschia tennis shoes, all day, every day, from dawn to dusk.  I don't take them off until I collapse)  She fixed lunch and guarded my bed room door.  She vacuumed and washed the dishes.  She put all the kids down for a nap.  Thank you so much, Susan.  Without that rest, there is no way I could have possibly made it through this weekend.

 Robert needed solitude in order to prepare for preaching, Sunday night.  I literally spent the entire weekend away from home with all the kids.  That could have been a disaster.  But, thanks to Amanda and Sherry, it was a blessing.

Operation Solitude began at 1900, Friday night.  Since I had spent most the day in bed, I was able to lace my trusty tennies securely to my feet and carry on.  After a speedy dinner of Little Caesar's pizza, (thank you, Rob!) I loaded up the troops and headed to the local theater.  Cy had only three requests for his birthday, celebrated earlier in the week.  1. Steak  2. Rush Revere and The First Patriots on Audiobook and 3. To see Dinesh D'Souza's film, America.  He is my All-American!  I couldn't help but catch the kids excitement.  They were going to see a MOVIE!  In a THEATER!!!!  This is a rare treat indeed.  I was actually smiling by the time we marched up to the ticket counter.  

"We would like to see America," as I adjusted the baby on my hip.  The lady looked up, startled.  "You do know that this is a documentary?" in what can only be described as a cynical whine. 
"Oh yes, the kids are so excited to see this!" as I hastily searched for the little dears. 
They were playing hide and seek behind the singing Annie poster. 
"They are?  Okaaay . . ."

Well, Cynical Cynthia notwithstanding, I am pleased to report that we all had a marvelous time.  Cy declared that this was the best movie he had ever seen in the theater.  Better than the LEGO movie.  For real!  Everyone should see this movie.  And so, I want to thank our troops, border patrol, police and firefighters, freedom lovers all over our great land.  Thank you for serving us day in and day out.  Even when most of us aren't as grateful as we should be.  I am thankful for our Founding Fathers and our Founding Documents.  I am thankful for our Providential history.  The hand of God has brought us through many toils and dangers and snares.  And now, as the world is on the brink of madness and an evil that has not had it's equal for several generations, I hope and pray that God will bring a revival of Biblical proportions to our land. 

Saturday morning came way too early, but Operation Solitude was still in effect and the boys had violin lessons at 0900.  I would like to stop here and thank my wonderful father-in-law, Ron.  He is providing the boys with violin lessons.  They are loving it.  And I am loving watching this camaraderie and love of music spring up between the boys and their grandpa.  Ron has also insisted I use some of the music funds to do something for myself.  Something like hire cleaning help.  Bless you, Sugar Daddy!  Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Sweet Miss Amanda met me before lessons to take Alvin and Elle and Ana off my hands.  Blessed relief!  I got to spend the morning with just my two oldest sons.  We made some special memories.  At this beginners class all the kids sat in a circle and introduced themselves.  Dee was very forthright, stating his name, age and favorite hobby of climbing trees.  Cy started off by saying he was the big brother to "five, no four, no it's three brothers, well, actually two brothers and two sisters.  And boy is it hard to keep track of them all!"  Bless your heart, little man.  When we went to the Philbrook Art Museum afterwards, he practically skipped across the parking lot, so relieved that he didn't have to hold anyone's hand.  Thank you, Cy for taking care of your family.  Only nine, but so dependable.  You bless me every day with your sweet spirit, love for the Lord and love for everyone around you.

After a while, Amanda called me to advise Ana, aka Stinker Bell, positively refused to eat from a bottle.  She bought a special bottle that promised to satisfy finicky breastfed babies.  She tried feeding her with a blanket over her head, all to none avail.  So, I headed towards Catoosa.  I was at a stoplight when my engine's temperature gage dinged.  My van was overheating.  Thankfully, I was right at a Utica Square, a trendy shopping center.  I pulled in front of a cute little sandwich shop and waited ten minutes for the engine to cool off.  I have put coolant in my engine many times, but I'm always terrified a little concerned that the whole thing might explode in my face.  So, I opened the hood and stood there, looking rather fragile and helpless.  Sure enough a kind man with his wife instantly materialized to offer assistance.  Thank you so much, random stranger.  And thank you to all you men out there who do the same.  Feminists might protest, but deep down, they really are grateful.

Back in the saddle, I arrive at Amanda's house and retrieve my little girl who missed me so much.  She snuggled her little head under my chin and wrapped her dimpled arms around my neck.  Thank you, Ana for making me feel needed.  Sure, it would be nice to be able to leave you with a friend every once in a while.  But, at least I know I'm not easily replaced.  We all need to be assured of that sometimes.

Amanda offered us lunch,
Which I gratefully accepted,
She started a movie.
Which I gratefully accepted,
She started the sequel,
Which I gratefully accepted.
She invited Robert to join us for supper,
Which he gratefully accepted.

Thank you, Amanda for serving us in such a practical way, all day long.  And even the next day she took Ana once again so that I could go to WalMart in between church services.  If I am tired today, I know she must be twice as tired.

I also must thank our Pastor's wife, Miss Sherry.  She single handedly kept the crime rate of Coweta from rising, yesterday.  If I had taken my other four hot, sticky, tired, overstimulated children into a crowded WalMart, full of Back To School Panicked Shoppers . . . Well, let's just say there is no way to know what sort of headlines were avoided in this morning's paper.  But beyond that, Sherry has been there for me, much like my mom, more like my sister, always my friend.  She has given far more than I could ever repay.  In twenty minutes, I will take my children back to her house while I go to the doctor to see what might be going on with me.  This is supposed to be the Pastor's Family Day.  Thank you, Sherry for your unconditional love and for teaching me how to minister to others by ministering tirelessly to me.

 While I'm at it, I would like to thank the others who have blessed me by loving and caring for my children.  This is just huge!  Such a ministry, you have no idea.  My sister, Joanna.  Miss Velma, Jeana, Amy and Lisa, Brenda and Linzi.  You gals are awesome!

I want to thank my Pastor, Brother J.C.  His love for Christ and His sheep is apparent every single day.

And there is yet my brothers, aunts and uncles, childhood friends, Facebook friends.  Thank you everyone for being a part of my life.  I love you all.

God is so good to place us in a network of friends and family.  Most amazing is the way my church has circled around me.  We can't do this alone.  If you do not have a home church to be committed to, please, pray about this.  Find a church that preaches the whole counsel of the Word of God and is strong in the love of Christ.  It is not enough to warm a pew.  We all need a place where we can love and be loved, serve and be served, feed and be fed.

"I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy, for your fellowship in the Gospel from the first day until now." Philippians 1:3-5

I will try to update when I have a better picture of what might be going on with my health and the steps I will take to remedy it.  Thank you again for your continued prayers.