Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Memorial Stones Post

It's been forever and a day since I've posted a story of what God has done in our lives. This one is miraculous and it just happened a few minutes ago. I wanted to write it down so I can look back on it and remember how God works on our behalf. 

If you don't know what a memorial stone is, you can read the story behind it here. Basically, it's my attempt to document and remember what God's been doing in our lives. Sometimes the stories are miraculous, sometimes they are pretty ordinary, but every story is a glimpse into how our God is working all things in our lives together for our good and His glory. 

So, on to the story. The Hubs is in grad school and we've been trying to pay for it completely debt-free. This is something we have felt like God was asking us to do, and I've been looking at it as a faith exercise. Each time one of those grad school payments is due, we have no idea how we will afford it. We never have the money saved up in advance, but when we need to make the payments, God always comes through for us. 

Well, the payment for this installment of his school bill was paid last week, and it left our bank account pretty bare. Ok, really empty. Basically, we have about $100 to make it through the next few weeks. Not impossible, but pretty tough. Today, the Hubs looked online at his classes and he realized that he has homework due on friday for one of his classes and we haven't had the money to buy the book. I was hoping he could make it a few weeks without the book, but it looks like he needs it before Friday. I checked all the discount stores and re-sell places in town, but no one is selling the book he needs. 

At this point, I started to panic because the full cost of the book online is $130. Plus he has two other textbooks he needs to buy as well. I couldn't figure out how we were going to come up with the money. 

At this point, I would love to tell you that my first reaction was to pray about it. But it wasn't. My first reaction was the one I usually choose as a default position; fear and panic. I got overwhelmed looking at the prices of books online and I just turned the computer off and decided I would deal with it another day.

But God. He heard my needs even when I didn't bring them to Him. And He showed up.

See, I was in a car accident with a friend of mine a few weeks ago. She was driving and the lady who hit us was uninsured. We got a little bit banged up and both of us ended up with whiplash and had to go to the chiropractor. Thankfully, there were no major issues, my friend's insurance covered all of her car repairs and our medical payments, and we didn't have to pay anything out of pocket. I thought that was the end of it. I was just thankful they didn't make us pay anything out of pocket to go get checked out. 

But I got a call from the insurance adjuster who is handling the claim, and she just wanted to let me know that they were wrapping the claim up and that all the bills were paid. She also wanted to tell me that they were going to send me a check for my time and trouble. 

Wait, what??

I've been in plenty of wrecks before, but no one has ever sent me a check that wasn't for car repairs. I'm thinking it might be like $50 or something. 

Heck no, techno. 

She said they were sending me a check for $600!! Ha! That's enough for school books, groceries, and a few unpaid bills that are sitting on the counter!

The point of this post is not to brag about how much the check is for, or to whine about how little money we had before. I honestly hate sharing details like that. BUT, the story wouldn't be the same if I didn't tell you how God not only provided for the need I was worried about, but He also provided for the other little things that I hadn't even started worrying about yet. He is a faithful God. He knows my needs even before I ask. And He always, always, always shows up and provides for us. 

Friday, August 16, 2013

All of Me

I go through phases where I find a new song or a new artist and I can't get enough. Right now it's All of Me by Matt Hammitt. (See the bottom of this post for a youtube video of the song)

The first time I heard it I only caught the end of the song, and I thought it would make a great wedding song.

The chorus goes like this:

You're gonna have all of me
You're gonna have all of me
'Cause you're worth every falling tear
You're worth facing any fear

You're gonna know all my love
Even if it's not enough
Enough to mend our broken hearts
But giving you all of me is where I'll start

Then I heard an interview with Matt Hammitt and he told the story behind the song. And it means so much more now. He and his wife found out his son Bowen would be born with a heart condition. The doctors didn't know if he would live or how long he would make it outside the womb. The song was written as Matt's way of giving the situation over to God, promising he would give himself completely to his son, regardless of the outcome. Sidebar: you can check out Bowen's Heart for the full story and updates on Bowen.

As I listened to the full song, I couldn't help but think how it applied to all the things I was going through when we had Hope. For kids in foster care, the primary goal is almost always reunification (meaning the child goes home to their parents or eventually goes to live with family). That doesn't always happen and it isn't always in the best interest of the child. But sometimes it can take a while for the state to figure out exactly what is in the child's best interests. Until a judge sends them home, foster parents are supposed to raise and love this child as they would their own. You have to be prepared to lose them at a moment's notice, all the while planning to continue life as "normal". It's hard to  love someone with all your heart and simultaneously prepare to lose them. It's even harder knowing that's how it's supposed to work. And that's what this song is about. 

It's hard, but it's so worth it. She was worth it.