Counter Pressure

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She handed me this card on my way out of Bible study. I had found the courage to share with our group that night that suffering hearing loss was hard, extremely hard, but I was confident that there was purpose in it, great purpose. It’s something God has been showing me through the years. Trials press in on every one of us. Some days, some months, some years press harder than others, and in our weakest moments we may question why there must be suffering. Why does God allow this? Why must we take these hard-pressed journeys? But one thing I know; Of one truth I am absolutely certain… God is good. Always. So when this life presses in on me, I remember: “We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed...” (2Cor 4:8)

We are Jars of Clay.

I took an art class long ago and learned the most basic of pottery.  But I loved to watch the more gifted artists work at the potter’s wheel, forming beautiful jars of clay. The precision and devotion encouraged me. The end result amazed me. The entire process of forming each masterpiece required the master’s hand to apply pressure both from without, and from within. Without pressure on both sides, the entire jar collapsed; crushed. Imagine walking through this hard-pressed life without the Holy Spirit living inside of us. He keeps us from being crushed by the pressures of this world. “But we have this treasure in jars of clay…” (2Cor 4:7)

God’s Holy Spirit inside of us gently presses against the trials, firmly holds us up against the suffering, applies counter-pressure, and in the process forms a beautiful work of art; a vessel in His image. Suffering transforms us. Great purpose.

 

“But now, O LORD, you are our Father;
we are the clay, and you are our potter;
we are all the work of your hand.” Isaiah 64:8pottery

We will only regret that we did not suffer more.

Shared form my heart~ Stacy

In God’s Hands

It shows itself at such unexpected times, this matter of trauma. When life is good, and we are happy, laughing, talking about all of life’s hopes and possibilities, suddenly tears stream down his face and he asks, “Why did I get this life? Why didn’t I die?”

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Sometimes I forget how close to the surface those thoughts will always be for him. Experiencing starvation, and orphaned by disease, those traumas never completely fade. I wish I had all the answers for him when he wrestles with this mixture of gain and loss.

I hold him close and whisper, “It wasn’t your time, Sweetheart. All the days ordained for you were written in God’s book before one of them came to be.(Psalm 139:16) He has plans for your life. Plans to give you hope and a future. (Jeremiah 29:11)”

He wonders aloud what his life’s purpose will be, and I remind him, “There is plenty of time.”, and I thank God for every ounce of time that He has granted me, to be these sweet boys’ Momma.

Teddy Indy for blog

dzintars for blog

Time is in God’s hands.

 Time

You Say Goodbye, I Say Hello.

Goodbye blessed Christmas. Hello exciting New Year.

96bd818d-525f-4e17-a5b9-360e23220b71I’ve been blogging since 2008, which I suppose makes me old in blog years. The posts may be fewer, as life is fuller, but this site is still my joy, so I continue to share my heart into the next year. 2016… welcome! After the fullness of the year behind, may simplicity be your theme.

Happy New Year All!

Shared form my heart~ Stacy

Be Anxious For Nothing

Not because my life is easy, but because my savior is good. 

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There is a sweet settled peace that keeps my heart steady. Another move ahead, and so much to do. A million plans to be made, and boxes of memories to pack away.

But first things first… Refreshment from God’s Word. He always knows exactly how to calm my fears and erase my worries.

Bittersweet Highlights

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It has been Quite. A. Year.  A bittersweet year.

I’ve spent months recovering from two major hip surgeries. My husband is currently recovering from back surgery. Our sweet Daisy, beloved pet for the last 13+ years, passed away.

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Daisy

And our son, Nate, moved nine hours away to attend college in Oregon. I miss him like crazy!

But there have been countless joys intermixed…

Andrew moved in. We’ve known him since just before he and Nate started kindergarten together, and he’s visited us in every home we’ve lived in since. But spending his senior year of high school with us sealed the deal… he became like a seventh son.

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Nate and Andrew, Kindergarten and 12th grade

What a special thing it was watching these two graduate from high school together. This summer he moved away, joining the Army, but we look forward to his Christmas visit!

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Graduation, May 2015

 

Sarah became a part of our lives. I have nothing but good things to say about this precious young lady. We love you Sarah.

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Graduation, May 2015

She and Nate are now both in Oregon for college, wearing promise rings, and envisioning their future together.

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Prom, May 2015

Nick also started college, part time at the JC down the street, receiving dual credit for high school, with a 4.0. He amazes me!

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Nick’s 16th, December 2014

He even became a licensed driver this year. Be warned! 😉

And to those of you who followed our adoption of Dzintars, you’ll be excited to hear the next joy… He officially has a L@tvi@n-American cousin! My sister and her family finalized their adoption of Dennis this year. Welcome to the family!

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Back: Adam, Dzintars, Nick, Papa (my dad), nephew Thomas, Nate, Kaleb, brother-in-law Clint, Middle: Me, Nana (my mom), niece Savannah, Front: Teddy, nephew Luke, new nephew Dennis, niece Sophi, Indy, sister Shawna Christmas 2014

And a forever precious summer memory spending a week at the beach with all 9 of “our” kids, including Andrew, Sarah, and Kaleb’s girlfriend, Eve.

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Eve and Kaleb

 

Dzintars, Andrew, Indy, Teddy, Me, Nick, Nate, and Sarah