Thursday, November 27, 2008

So Much To Be Thankful For!

What a day this has been! I must admit we have not been looking forward to Thanksgiving (or Christmas for that matter) without Claire! Halloween was a very difficult evening for all of us, so you can imagine what November has been and December will be!

This time of year I seem to reflect upon all the Lord has done for me and my family over the past 12 months. In doing this over the past 5 years or so, I have begun to realize how quickly our lives can change in a year! As I write this I am reflecting on all that I have to be thankful for! Honestly, it is hard to look past the "Great Sadness" that is upon our family and understand that God does in fact have a perfect plan for us! We miss Claire more than words can express and not a moment goes by that I don't yearn for her arms and legs to tighly wrap around my body! In our prayer time together the other day, Jeff was thankful for how Clarie stretched us individually and as a family in ways that no one else ever has or ever will. Man, how I miss that strongwilled, independent, funloving, spirited person always full of life!

Through what we believe was divine appointment (and a little help from Claire), we decided to road trip to NYC to watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade!! I know, can you believe it!! Let me just say that if this is on your "Bucket List" then do it! It has been great!!

So for today, Thanksgiving 2008, I am so thankful for:
* a Godly Christian husband who loves me and has held me many a moments these past four months while I sob in his arms and questions God's plan for our lives
* three daughters (Abbigayle, Caroline and Sarah) who bring more joy and pride to my heart and soul than I ever thought possible
* friends and family who have remained faithful to minister to us on a daily basis these past four months
* friends who are willing to follow a God Size Dream with us!
* and most importantly I am thankful for a Heavenly Father that has a plan designed especially for my life; Jesus Christ who was willing to sacrifice himself in order that I would have eternal life in His presence and the assurance and comfort that Clarie is resting in His presence and a Holy Spirit that is amidst my every move, thought and feeling (even when I cry out to God for understanding)

"I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify him with thanksgiving." Psalm 69:30 (KJV)

What are you thankful for this evening?

Hugs those babies a little tighter, kiss your husband a little longer, tell your parents how much you love them, send your friends and family a note of encouragement and praise God for what He has done in your life!! You never know what the next 12 months will bring so make the most of them!

May God give you a special blessing today!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

"Look Homeward Angel"

OK! I actually have never read that book, but I thought it was a great Blog title for what I want to say, so maybe I should read the book (in my spare time :))!

I want to follow up on my last blog, Jonathan is doing great!! Praise God!! He is home and is recovering well! God is still so evidently in the miracle business.

Even though Claire's outcome was not as humanly favorable it was certainly a spiritual victory! Jeff and I can look back on the three days that we spent dealing with Claire's medical crisis and count the miracles that Our Heavenly performed right in front of our eyes! Thank You Jesus!!

We are still recovering as a family and as I have said before, life is hard!!!! Even though, God continues to share His mercies with us and we continue to be blessed!

Last week was a particularly difficult week for us. We came off of several weekends in a row filled with activity, Jeff has had a lot of things going on at work and we were just exhausted. Wednesday and Thursday were probably the most difficult days that I have had!! Several things occurred on Wednesday that were totally out of my control and they just got the best of me!

I have heard and read several times about how the waves of grief come and go, well there was an undertow with the wave I felt last week! Thanks to a terrific husband, wonderful children and remarkable friends I was able to give in to that undertow and have the day to deal with my grief as I needed to!!

Thursday morning Jeff and I got up and helped Abbigayle and Caroline get ready for school! After they left for the bus, Jeff suggested we have a picnic breakfast at the cemetery! So, Jeff, Sarah and I got dressed and off to the cemetery we went to have breakfast with Claire! As we pulled up to her grave I thought "you know a cemetery is a rather clean place to have a picnic" and at the same time I felt this nudging from God that said "don't look here for comfort." Well, as I walked up to Claire's grave I noticed a fresh pile of dog poop in the middle of her grave! I thought "you have got to be kidding!!" Jeff was kind enough to clean it up and we proceeded with our breakfast. It was a sweet time!

When we got home, Jeff made plans for the children for the rest of the day and I went to bed! That was the first day I have spent in bed since Claire died! I really needed it!! When I woke up (about 3pm) I noticed a reflection on the bedroom door frame, it was of a fist with the index pointing straight up toward Heaven. Again, I felt God whispering "look to me for comfort."

I was able to spend Thursday crying out to My God, begging Him for a different outcome, trying to make sense of Claire's death and trying to be still and listen to His voice. And then, just when I needed it the most, the scripture God brought to me on this day of sorrow is from 2 Corithians:

"So we're not giving up. How could we! Even though on the outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside, where God is making new life, not a day goes by without his unfolding grace. These hard times are small potatoes compared to the coming good times, the lavish celebration prepared for us. There's far more here than meets the eye. The things we see now are here today, gone tomorrow. But the things we can't see now will last forever." 2 Corinthians 4:16~18 (The Message)

Blessings To You!!