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Three Cheers for Ear Tubes

Six kids in their beds at three thirty in the afternoon.  My cup of tea is steaming next to me and a cool breeze is blessing my shoulders.  I almost didn’t want to write all of that, and if I was superstitious, I would hunt down some wood to knock on right now.  Half an hour ago, it was pretty much the opposite!  Electric guitar blaring, tears, running in circles.  Hold on.  Scratch the “everyone being in their beds” part.  One just crawled out from underneath MY bed.  At least they’re quiet.  And that’s what mama needs right now.  2017-07-13 14.24.24It’s been a wonderful yet challenging summer for us!  Living in a half-torn-up living area, and lots of doctors visits for Matthew.  This morning was his 10th visit this year to his ENT’s.  It included another tube put in the one ear, which should provide some much-needed relief from a ton of pressure he’s been having!  In addition to the infusions last month, it’s been a lot.  Frankly, it stinks.  Because even though everything looks really clear (yay!) his entire ear nose and throat anatomy is not the way it was before Wegener’s.  It’s not even the same as it was a few years ago!  His body doesn’t have the ability to naturally move mucous from his nose and sinuses to his throat.  He rinses 3-4 times a day with saline just to keep it as clear as possible.  Even then, junk starts to collect, because there is only so much a couple pints of salt water can do.  We take stock in sea salt, and (next to me) the neti pot is his best friend.  We live in exciting times, where super smart people are inventing things and even surgeries he’s had done in the past are more laparoscopic than ten or two years ago!  So, perhaps something will become available in the future to help repair the scar tissue and missing parts in his upper respiratory system that have gone AWAL from this disease.  We are incredibly grateful for the good care of his doctors.  We have been encouraged by them to keep taking our favorite supplements, which target gut health, balance and inflammation, and to stay consistent with an anti-inflammatory diet.  What a gift to have doctors who have the incredible expertise and knowledge as they do, and who also encourage plant-based medicine as much as possible!

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Our attempt at a family “us-ie” was almost successful. Accidentally, Betty’s sweet face isn’t there… More practice is needed!

After many many late night classes and studying, I am now a Certified Natural Health Professional.  My goal is to continue to use what God has taught me and is continuing to teach me… through our own health journey, and being a CNHP, to educate and encourage others in their health journeys! 2017-07-26 15.09.47Our four oldest kiddos went to soccer camp last week.  It was wild being a mom of two again.  Betty couldn’t stop saying how “peaceful” it was.  She cracks me up every day!  Like yesterday, when I pulled up to the curb to park.  Parallel parking in Silver Belle is becoming more second nature, but it’s still challenging to line up a 12-passenger van on a city street.  As we got out she said, “Let’s see how you parked.”  Thankfully, I “passed”, because she gave me two thumbs up. “Pretty good!”

Harry continues to melt our hearts into puddles, all over, every day.  At 8 months, he has four teeth now and loves to eat absolutely everything.  Recent discoveries being fished out of his mouth include a mancala piece, legos, an ear bud, a bug, egg shells, rocks, drywall, and spackle.  This does not include the disgusting little bits of food that I never knew existed underneath the refrigerator and dishwasher… until a crawling baby whose favorite pastime is finding tiny chokable bits and pieces wherever his darling chubby fingers can reach!  He loves to wave “bye-bye”, drink out of a straw, make car sounds, bang things together, and call his favorite elephant “Bo-bo”.

Nadine & Elijah start high school in one month.  We all have an element of nervous excitement about this brand new experience!  Now that I’m able to take a break from my classes, it’s time to start school planning for the other three.  Elsie, my resident interior designer, has plans and ideas of making one of the bedrooms into a school room.  This idea is under discussion.  If baby brother would consistently sleep through the night, I would be much more inclined to the idea!  Stay tuned.

Well, my hour is up, and every. single. child. has come to my room.  Haha!  Time to get a celebratory dinner together!  Cheers to big dreams, becoming a CNHP, a new ear tube, and a beautiful life!

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Milk Bath

This morning I woke up a little after 4 o’clock, feeling very uncomfortable and wet.  “Oh no,” I said out loud, not really sure why I wanted sympathy, but just that I did.  Matthew was sleeping too soundly to hear me, though.  Yesterday I had washed and line-dried our sheets.  Of course.  This morning I woke up in a puddle of milk.  Which meant one thing: Harry had slept through the night for the first time in awhile.  He had been doing really well before we did our traveling to Nevada, then Tennessee.  So, I was glad for the sleep, but super uncomfortable.  Somehow I managed to go back to sleep for a couple more hours, and woke up to a chattering baby, who had happily slept 12 hours.  I had prayed the night before with the girls: “Father, please help Harry to just sleep.  He’s chubby enough and doesn’t need the milk.”  We all burst out laughing at the cute picture instantly painted in our mind’s eye: thighs for days that squish and squish.  He answered our prayer, though!

Harry is certainly chubby.  We squeal over him every day.  He is seven months old and loves to babble and crawl and get into everything everyone is doing.  He is a tiny human vacuum cleaner.  Whatever doesn’t stick to his onesie, gets put into his mouth.  Today alone I’ve fished out a tortilla chip, a rock, a dice, and a bug.  This morning he found an apple core and was like a puppy who had found a bone.  I watched him chomp on it for awhile, but once he started to bite off pretty substantial pieces, I had to take it away.  He did not like that.  He is a foodie through and through.  He eats and loves whatever you put in his mouth.  We do a little pureed baby food, but he would prefer small bites of chicken, or curry, or eggs, or chili, or lemons.  He loves them all!

This week the two oldest kiddos are away at teen camp.  It is so quiet!  Betty burst into tears yesterday because she missed Nadine so much.  It is SO much fun having teenagers.  There are stormy moments, but we are all learning this together.  We encourage communication, not stuffing of feelings.  If someone is being selfish, serving someone else is a wonderful antidote.  Late night porch talks are their favorite thing.  A big change is on the horizon this year.  Nadine and Elijah will both be going to Linville Hill Christian School this fall for high school.  It was a huge decision but one we are all excited about!

Jack had an acrobatic accident last month which landed him with a spiral fracture of three bones in his right hand.  Nadine recorded the flip before the flip that broke his hand.  It was impressive.  After a month in a cast, he has only one more week of a brace.  He is back to flips and tricks.  Can’t keep a strong young man down!  The only positive side to having his hand in a cast was that he was opted out of writing assignments the last month of school.

Elsie is my resident interior designer.  She rearranges their room almost weekly.  She actually rearranged the dining room last month with smashing success.  I came home to a new look and liked it even better than how it was before!  She has an eye for design with clothing too.  She is starting to bake more, though she prefers riding her bike or swimming.

Betty is a proud second grader.  She loves to read and reads well! Sometimes the words that pop out of her mouth surprise us with their seasoned-sounding wisdom.  Other times she just makes us laugh with her dry sense of humor.  The other day the girls were walking around with their clipboards taking orders and having us sign our names a hundred times for various reasons.  She came up to me and asked if they could have a bowl of pretzels.  “Sign ‘yes’ or ‘no’ next to your name.  Don’t write maybe.  This is a yes or no question.”  I about died.  Then she asked me, “Is your name Amy?  Can I call you Amy?”  This morning we were moving out a bookshelf I had sold online.  Betty took a look at it and said, “How old is that?  It looks like it’s from 1994!”  The laughing emoji face is constantly circling around my head when that girl talks.

This morning Matthew finished up with his third out of four infusions.  His voice seems to be a tad bit better, though we only have symptoms to base any improvements off of right now til he gets his next round of bloodwork done.  We sometimes battle discouragement, but we know that doesn’t get us anywhere.  Yesterday I read a familiar and comforting verse: “Thus far the Lord has helped us.”  It always pops into my daily reading at a time when something larger than I can comprehend is happening.  I remember when Matthew and I were dating and it seemed like we would never be able to get married.  He was, after all, a teenager.  It was one of the hardest waiting times of our life.  Each season is a stepping stone to the next.  Like trees coming to life in spring and then preparing themselves for fall and winter… each season has a purpose and a beauty all its own.  We can declare with surety and confidence that up until today, the Lord has helped us.  He will never quit being Who He is.  He is worthy of our trust and confidence.

We’ve done a lot of traveling already this year!  Matthew and I enjoyed traveling to Las Vegas for the annual Plexus convention.  I’m over halfway through my studies to become a CNHP (Certified Natural Health Professional).  Ever since highschool, I’ve been passionate about how our bodies work.  I’m absolutely thrilled to have this avenue of study to learn more and this area of work to help people with gut health!  It’s so exciting to hear all of the stories that come my way every single day.

Hopefully it won’t be so long between the next journal entry!  Here is a small camera dump of the past month!


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Sixth Annual Kids Day plus

Today I left the farm with two bushels of tomatoes, and lots of onions, garlic and peppers.  There is something incredibly rewarding and delicious about canning our own tomato sauce each summer.  Nadine was a wonderful help, as she always has been in the kitchen.  We got through one bushel together before I sat down, put my feet up with a cold dandyblend beverage, and let her finish the second bushel.  We chatted about life.  It was a special time together, and I appreciate her youth and helpfulness!  Having teenagers is great!  The entire process took about 8 hours, but we now have tons of delicious roasted tomato sauce canned for the winter.  Not exactly the most convenient day to can and get the kitchen as dirty as can be.  Matthew is busy installing a new hot water heater in the basement, which means we temporarily have no water.  I’m soooooo excited to have hot water again!  Our tank has been leaking for a while, and he is replacing it with a tankless water heater, which confuses me to no end.  Which is why I can the tomatoes and he installs the water heater!  Yes, we did about forty jars, and yes, that one green-lidded fella bothers me too.  It’s the Where’s Waldo of my canning jars.

Processed with MOLDIVYesterday we celebrated Kids’ Day.  This is our sixth year doing it, and it is never a specific date… just someplace in August when the time is right.  The inspiration of this day is due to my sweet friend Ruthie.

It was a rather scattered morning, in which we found out the coupons we had been saving for this specific date were expired.  But we still ended up driving to New Jersey to venture around Six Flags Great Adventure for the day.  It was so fun that we never even got a picture of the kids on their special day.  Most of the day was spent in two groups: the three oldest, who were tall enough for all the rides, and the short crowd who wished they were, but made the most of as many rides as they could.  Each group was accompanied by either a parent who doesn’t really care for rollercoasters because it makes them somewhat sick, or a parent who adores rollercoasters, but happens to be growing another human being and wasn’t able to do any of them.  I’ll let you take a stab at who’s who there.  We shut the place down, and made many memories in the process.

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The Ferris Wheel was the only ride Mom could do, which was fun with the little girls. We started school, and much is done around our table. Elijah had a sweet tea time with the girls to make up for a friend who was unable to come. My diligent artist, learning how to create 3D drawings and illusions.

As the month comes to a close, I relish how beautiful it was.  Playing.  Splashing.  Growing things.  Experiencing imncredible heights.  Being with friends.

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There were a lot of super difficult days, to be honest.  A few in particular which threatened to unravel me for no apparent reason except to remind me that this is not my home.  I’ve also been remembering how different our life was three years ago, when Matthew’s life was hanging between life and death.  It’s not fun to go back to that place, even though somewhere in my deep subconscious I know that this week was the week.  As hard as it all was, it was what God used and is using to bring Him much glory and many people to a place of freedom in their health.  We’re so excited for the stories emerging about how God is changing lives through Plexus!  We share our story, never knowing what He will do!
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Baby “Chip” is growing so much!  I’m twenty-eight weeks along already, and have only begun to realize that we should start getting ready to welcome a baby into our busy little home!  I feel great, though huge, and am enjoying his antics which go on every night around the time I’m crawling into bed.  He is so loved.
2016-08-02 09.59.18-2Have a delightful last few weeks of warmth and summer!


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All of a Sudden

So before another month flies by, I’d really like to share a bit about the time I went flying to Tennessee last month!  It was an unexpected gift, yet one I worked hard to earn.  As my Plexus business grows, I too have been growing.  Stretching my wings a bit, both figuratively and literally.  Matthew is an incredible support and is always encouraging me to keep going, keep learning, keep growing.  So, I was gifted this trip by one of the leaders on my team, to go to a John Maxwell mindset training event given by Sonya Dudley, who is also someone whom I look up to in life and business.  There were four of us total from our team, and we had SUCH a great time together.  All mamas, sharing a passion for Jesus and health and freedom.  It was one of the most inspiring weekends I’ve had in a really long time.  I came home with copious notes.

Mindset really does matter.  “Whether you think you can or you can’t, either way you’re right.”  I realized a lot of lies I’ve let myself believe.  Things about my past which I’ve allowed to define who I am today.  They have played a part in shaping me into who God has made me to be, but they do not define me.  Jesus Christ has set me free from fear of man, shame from bad choices I’ve made, and doubt of what He is capable of doing through me.  Absolutely no one on this earth can do what you have been placed on this globe at this time to do.  No one.

This is my passion: to bring the same hope to others.  I never ever thought a pink drink would pave the way to talk to so many people about hope in Christ and hope in health.
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It’s rather ironic how flat out on our couches we have been for the past month with coughs and tummy bugs.  I would be the last person to claim Plexus as a cure or preventative for anything.  Of course we still get sick… but when we are well… we are thriving!  I can’t tell you just how much stronger I feel than ten months ago.  None of this happened all of a sudden.  It’s been a consistent and gradual change.  My hair is finally growing thicker.  My nails are crazy strong and healthy without ridges and bumps.  I have been the exact same weight for at least 6 months, without fluctuating those 5-10 pounds once a month.  Mood swings are incredibly rare.  I wake up feeling refreshed after sleeping like a log all night.  I am a much more calm and collected mom than I have ever been, thanks to the simple fact that my blood sugar is finally balanced.  It is so simple yet has made such a profound impact on my life as a wife, mom, teacher, and now businesswoman.  This is such a tiny smattering of the blessing Plexus has been in our life.  Just one story of thousands.

So everything inside of me went for a little loop last week when I stumbled through a few days clouded with an old and very unwelcome friend: depression.  I knew what was true, and the thoughts which were tempting me to despair were nothing short of lies.  They shrouded my mind into thinking there is nothing really out there for me.  Like a fog which tricks the eye into certainty of no more than nothingness ahead.  Yet praise God for His Word which is sharper than any two edged sword, and most certainly is able to penetrate light onto my foggy path. He brought me out to the other side and has shown me some incredible promises.  There are some beautiful verses which encourage me that I am not the first one to feel these feelings or think these thoughts.  Neither are you.  It’s what we do with these thoughts that matter.  Only by the power of God’s Word, can you dispel the fiery darts of the enemy.  Psalm 27 is one of my favorite passages.  The last two verses say:

I would have lost heart, unless I had believed
That I would see the goodness of the Lord
In the land of the living.

Wait on the Lord;
Be of good courage,
And He shall strengthen your heart;
Wait, I say, on the Lord!

Lots of exciting things are in store for us this year.  Some huge decisions, and I know that is part of why I felt like shutting down was a good idea.  I love what Matthew reminded me of the other day when I was at my lowest. There are so many pivotal moments recorded in the Bible.  Important stories and dialogues and days, but the in-between days, weeks, months, years… are not all recorded.  Yet always, always, always, God shows up in the mundane.  Solomon, searching for some lost donkeys all of a sudden is anointed king.  Joseph, doing what was before him to do each day in prison all of a sudden was next in command to Pharaoh. Moses, a shepherd, all of a sudden was chosen to be the deliverer of an entire nation.  Jesus, a local carpenter, all of a sudden doing miracles and signs and wonders.  It even seems babies are conceived and all of a sudden birthed in one verse, leaving out the long nine months of waiting and the arduous labor and delivery.  Every single “all of a sudden” moment in the Bible or in your life and mine, has been preceded by many ordinary and unsung days.  Tucked between the ordinary and extraordinary is usually a series of painful and difficult moments, days, months or years.

In the mundane, quitting is not an option.  Trust is vital.  Each moment is but a small stroke in the entire masterpiece.  One day we get to stand back and see how it all fits together.


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We Waited A Decade For This Moment

Today held one of those moments in life which freeze a forever picture onto your mind’s eye.  Matthew had a follow-up doctor’s appointment with a couple of his ENT specialists down at Jefferson.  All the kids came along, and we maneuvered the parking garage, elevators, city blocks and waiting room chairs.  The first doctor took a look down his throat, through his nose.  I have been to every appointment where he has been scoped, and have seen enough inflammation to know the moment the picture came on the screen, that this was “normal”.  I videoed the procedure and now have something with which to compare it.  These are screen shots of a cell phone video… but if you have any sort of medical background you’ll probably be able to see the difference between the two:

Matthew's vocal chords, 2014 and 2015.

Matthew’s vocal chords, 2014 and 2015.

His first doctor said, “What are you doing?”  Matthew told him he’s been keeping a pretty strict diet, exercising, plus added some supplements which have been really helping.  “Well, whatever you’re doing, keep doing!” were his instructions.  He said he had never seen his throat and nose look that good.  In his words: “I see no evidence of disease at all. There is no inflammation.”  He was so pleased.  The second doctor was even more flabbergasted. Especially when he learned Matthew is no longer on any prescription meds.  “There is no crusting in your sinuses whatsoever.  Not even a bit.  It looks completely clean as a whistle.  What are you doing differently?” he asked.  So Matthew told him about Plexus and how we’ve been taking supplements which target gut health, inflammation and balancing blood sugar.  He was super interested and wanted to know a bit more about it.  Then he said, “Keep doing what you’re doing!” and asked for more information.  This journey of a decade has seen us sitting in MANY waiting room chairs.  More doctor dates than I can count.  I am so thankful for the many people who have prayed and supported us through this journey.  It feels like the end of a really difficult race, yet I know it’s actually the beginning of a new lap in life.   One of the hardest turns was two years ago.  These verses spoke into the darkness which threatened to swallow us in that hospital room: 
We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired of life itself.  Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead.  He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and He will deliver us again. On Him we have set our hope that He will continue to deliver us,  as you help us by your prayers. Then many will give thanks on our behalf for the gracious favor granted us in answer to the prayers of many. (2 Corinthians 1)
Today I feel like the last part of those verses has come to a sort of fruition.  We know there has been much glory and praise given to our GREAT God and deliverer today.  Because of what He has done through our circumstances, we are unable to keep our mouths shut.  

I want to take it a step further here.  We feel like nothing which has happened to us has been for nothing.  If our story helps one person, it has been worth it.  Yet, we don’t want to just be an encouraging story you read.  We want our story to stir you into action.  Yeah, it’s not easy to change your lifestyle, eat a whole new way and exercise when it’s almost never convenient.  And if I used strong language I would insert it here.  It also SURE ISN’T EASY to sit in a hospital and wonder if your life will be taken away or spared.  That changes you.  It changed us to action, research, questioning everything, and trying new things.  Our story is not over, but it’s been an incredible page-turner so far.  Everyone’s health journey is SO personal and intimate to them.  But if I could look you straight in the eye and beg you not to wait until it’s too late to get a hold of your health, I would.

We’ve been trudging through a pile of puzzle pieces for so long, and both feel that Plexus has been that last missing piece, bringing everything together.  Because his gut is healing, other things are happening.  In four months, Matthew feels better than he ever has on any prescription meds.  The amount of reading and research I’ve done has solidified my belief.  Now to have two elite specialists giving us their thumbs up: incredible.  2015-09-26 11.59.53

I love this picture of Betty and him counting to 100 while they waited for the doctor to come.  I get choked up in humble thanksgiving that our children are blessed with such an amazing dad.  His faith, endurance, and gentleness stand out to me the most.
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Thank you for praising with us together tonight!


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September Snapshots

This week in school has been busy!  We made gliders in Science class one day to learn about drag and experiment with a long skinny wing vs a short and wide wing… which flies further?  It’s always fun when school can be brought outside.
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Our sidewalk always needs a sweep, and we have a few kids who adore sweeping.  I love her joy and I also love her outfit… which has been going strong for three days now.  I think it’s one of her favorites too!  DSC_7828-2
I’m thankful for homeschooling, but by three o’clock my brain is toast and I need a few minutes of alone time.  The other day Betty, who’s middle name is shadow, said, “I really want to follow you because I have a lot of stuff to say to you!”  I mean, really.  How do you not squeeze someone like that?  She’s also very perceptive of when I need a break.  A couple days ago, she happened to be walking up the stairs behind me as I retreated to my room for a few minutes of silence.  She immediately said, “I’m not following you, mom.”  I laughed on the inside, and her wit started the process of melting away the stress of that day.  She is loving Kindergarten.  She constantly wants to do more and learn more.
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Elijah continues to invent, experiment and build.  He got over his fear and mastered a front flip off the diving board this summer.  He almost made me dive headfirst into our grill while I was flipping hamburgers the other night, when he snuck up behind me and scared the living daylights out of me!  He’s a great big brother.  He loves music and his guitar lesson is the highlight of his week.
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Nadine is doing great in school.  She loves her time with her rabbits.  Yes, Oreo is really jumping into the air.  He races around our front porch and Nadine says he’s happy when he does that.  I don’t speak bunny, but she does.  She occasionally babysits now, which she enjoys very much!  She is super into coloring to de-stress, and continues to be the best letter-writer in the County!
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Jack keeps improving on his reading.  He is strong and a perfectionist.  He enjoys competing with Matthew and one day he will beat him, I’m sure!  He totally beats me in pull-ups, push-ups and the like.  He loves to play with coins and carry them around in a sock.
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Elsie is a great big sister.  She and Betty still enjoy twinning some days.  She is very much into gymnastics, even though not officially taking lessons. She watched some YouTube videos and learned how to do a back bend, and how to do a back pullover on the bars!  She has turned into a bookworm, and I love that her favorite book right now was one of my favorite books when I was her age: Annie Oakley!  She constantly is tidying up around the house, and more than a few times I have come upstairs at the end of the day to find the bathroom scrubbed, or my bed made.  She is a strong girl with a lot of determination!
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In a few weeks Matthew & I will be running the Ragnar relay again.  So I’ve been running a lot.  Since we started taking Plexus and my blood sugar has been stabilizing, I actually sweat now.  I never used to sweat, and so this is a new phenomenon for me and I text way too many pictures of my sweaty face to Matthew because it tickles me… literally!  When I’m not running or teaching school, I’m IN school or in our kitchen.  Things I study: I’m still studying to become a certified aromatherapist, which I love and dive into when there’s a free evening.   Also, constantly researching gut health.  My favorite beverage is a tumeric latte, which helps with inflammation.  It’s a sad evening when the whole thing spills all over the table and dyes the floor yellow.  It’s amazing stuff.
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Time with Matthew is incredibly precious.  The other night we were able to slip away for a little date.  I pulled out some shoes I haven’t worn since I was a teenager.  Fun times!
In closing, I’ll attach a video we made yesterday.  In science we decided to conduct a little experiment about a product in our house we generally think is “healthy”.  But is it?  Check it out to see our amateur video attempts.  This was our first run through, and the kids thought the humor was fun so here it is.  First cut.  Enjoy!


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Running and Free

We were created to be free.  One of my favorite things about being a child of God is the freedom we have in Christ.  Why has Christ set us free from sin and death?  For the incredible and awesome status of “free”.  Free to love beyond ourselves.  Free to truly live and not just exist.  We were on those slave blocks.  Half-naked, humiliated, alone.  Sin had us bought and mocked and tortured some more.  Deep inside all of us is this yearning for freedom.  Real freedom.  Not the freedom from our own procuring, like sneaking out the house at night in search of exhilarating freedom, yet being burdened with guilt instead.  Not like a runaway slave who is constantly looking over their shoulder in fear.  Freedom in Christ is freedom FROM guilt and fear.  It is living truly free.  Free to be at peace with our life today and eternally.

My heart hurts when I see God’s children becoming slaves all over again to fear and guilt.  The very reason our freedom was bought at such a cost was so we wouldn’t have to be burdened ever again.  It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.  Did you hear that?  It’s like a slave being bought from the tortured life of slavery, being given every privilege of a free man, yet still beating themselves every night for old times’ sake.  It’s a mockery of what Jesus has done for us on the cross.  And it’s exactly where our enemy wants us to  be.  If we aren’t taking full advantage of our freedom in Christ, he wins.  Because his tactics are to lure us into self-made cages of fear and guilt.  As long as we’re in bondage again to fear, we are powerless.  Scared stiff.

I’ve been really convicted about being unafraid of doing hard things.  We all have hard things.  Everyone’s story is different.  We simply can not compare each other’s journeys.  We’re all running the race, and it’s a good thing we’re not all the same pace.  Just like running, though, the goal is not to quit.  On our journey, we’ve had some hard stuff.  Our hard has often revolved around health and money.  In fact, last month, the two year anniversary of our hardest battle yet, came and went without me even thinking about it!  I praise the Lord for a healthy marriage, despite unhealthy bodies.  More recently, our hard has been the climbing out of the pit we’ve been diving in and out of for the past ten years.  It’s because of the freedom we have in Christ we have been able to keep going.

Maybe Paul was a runner too, because he often referenced our life to a race. In a race, you’re exhausted, sometimes unsure of how to make the next step, and usually right about the time you feel like quitting, someone with a cup of cold water or a really encouraging word yelled in your direction puts a new strength to your legs and a renewed desire to finish well. 2015-09-08 12.13.17
We all have stories.  I actually made a short video about our journey so far.  I call it ten years condensed into less than five minutes.  Consider it a cup of cold water if perhaps you are going through a hard mile.  We’re not there yet, but I can fully and earnestly say, thus far the Lord has helped us!