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I went to our church’s annual Christmas program and had a wonderful time.  Every year they do something a little different.  This year they had a few people from the choir and orchestra tell of past Christmases that they had enjoyed. It made me stop and think about my own Christmas memories. I seemingly have a VERY bad memory. I have had 40 Christmases so far. I can only remember 2 of them. Wow, that is pathetic. I guess I need to up my Omega 3 intake.  ;-)

The first Christmas I remembered is when I was eight years old. On Christmas Eve that year my oldest brother Jim, his wife Linda, and their little baby Becca came for Christmas.  Jim was a wonderful older brother to me.  He used to call me Lena Horn…funny guy. That night he and Linda had bought me a Connect Four game.  My younger sister Flossie and I played it non-stop after I opened it.  We had a blast that night.  After a fun-filled evening Jim, Linda, and Becca gathered their things and got ready to go home.  Everyone headed outside to wave good-bye. Flossie and I however decided to stay in and play our new game. My dad stepped back in the house and said, “You two get out here and say good-bye. You never know if this might be the last time you see your brother.” I was a tad peeved that I had to go outside, but I was soon hugging and kissing and waving along with the rest of the family.  Little did my dad know that he was being quite prophetic in that moment. The next day…Christmas…the phone rang.  I answered it and was surprised to hear one of Linda’s family members on the phone asking to talk to one of my parents. Jim had been accidentally shot that day in a hunting accident.  He died on the way to the hospital. This was a VERY difficult time for my family. None of us wanted to go on. We all slept together in the living room for many weeks.  No one wanted to be alone. I remember going to sleep listening to my family sniffle and cry. We had a few animals at the time and my dad and I often did chores together.  We would walk back to the house from the barn hand in hand. Usually half way back dad would turn to me and say, “Just think Hannah…we are one day closer to seeing Jim.” It was such a comfort to think about that. Christmas has never been the same since.

The second Christmas I remember is the year I was pregnant with Uriah. I was due on the 27th of December. My doctor had told me she would induce me 3 weeks earlier, but decided she didn’t want to be bothered over the holiday. I was miserable. I was in so much pain I could hardly walk. All I wanted was to hold my baby in my arms. I have to admit I didn’t enjoy Christmas much that year. All I could think about was having that baby. A week later I did…only to have him die as well.

This Christmas I will remember as well. This Christmas will be remembered by many. The parents of 20 first graders will NEVER be able to forget this Christmas. What an awful memory for these families. I had presents for Uriah under the tree that Christmas just before he was born. I’m sure these families do as well for their children. Can you imagine what it must be like for them?

Some people may look at the two Christmases that I remember as awful memories. I suppose I could focus on the negative of those Christmases, but I chose not to do that.  Instead I think of my wonderful brother having been able to enjoy the last 32 years with his Lord and Savior. He’s been able to be with Uriah for the last 3 years. I bet he has just about pinched Uriah’s cheeks until they are almost raw. My family will know what I mean by that. Today I am another day closer to seeing them both. I am ready to see them. Ready for people I love to stop hurting. Ready for this world to stop hurting each other. Ready for the killing to stop. Ready to have Christmas every day in Heaven.

I’m ready….are you?  If you’re not ready for heaven, don’t you want to be? If you don’t know for sure you’re going to heaven someday, please message me and I will be more than happy to share with you how you can know and be ready to enjoy eternity.

Merry Christmas and may every Christmas that you have be a fond memory for years to come.

One of my favorite memories of Phebe, when she was little, is actually centered around a picture. She had a little friend her age…probably around 5 years old. Her friend was VERY white and Phebe was VERY black. The picture was of just their hands. Her friend saw the picture and asked which hand was hers and which hand was Phebe’s. I remember loving the fact that the color of skin wasn’t noticed even though this little girl knew her colors.

Growing up bi-racial in an all-white community was…well…let’s just say interesting. I was called a few colorful names. I never told anyone. Those names hurt me to the core. I think it’s funny how as I get older my skin seems to get lighter. When I was little I remember wishing I could take a bath in bleach so that I could look like the rest of my family. I would try to stay out of the sun as much as possible just so I didn’t get too dark. The problem was I loved to swim too much to not be in the sun. Now most people don’t even realize I’m part black. Shoot, my husband didn’t even know it until he heard me talking about it a few months after we were married. :-)

My son Abner is quite dark too. He has had some very rude and crude comments said to him over the years. I recall when he was about 6 he came to me and asked what a certain word meant. I asked him where he had heard it. He said his fellow teammate in T-ball had called him that. For me that was a very sad day. I try to protect my children, but sometimes it’s just impossible.

I’m sure a lot of people would think I’m too concerned with color. I don’t really care. I do everything I can to protect my children from cruelty. Today someone stopped by the house to pick something up I was giving away. I wasn’t looking my best so I was going to send Phebe to the door. I suddenly was afraid that the people wouldn’t take it because a black person was giving it to them. So at the last second I sent Abner to the door and told him to be a gentleman. Abner is a bit lighter than Phebe so I was hoping it wouldn’t be a problem. I listened from the living room to the whole conversation. To be honest I was a nervous wreck. I imagined this woman throwing the item away the first chance she got. A couple hours later I received an email from her. She wanted to thank me for the item and to praise my son for having such good manners. WOW! I decided to let her know my fears. She wrote back and said I was a silly woman. That I should be thankful I have such a wonderful son, and that I must be a very good mom to have a son like mine. She agreed that we do live in a very funny world and she understood my fear, but that for her it wasn’t a problem.

Isn’t it funny how we can let our imagination run wild? Well, maybe you don’t, but I sure can at times. We have lived in the Kalamazoo area for almost 2 years now. It just struck me today that since we’ve lived here we only have had one incident concerning color. Maybe it’s time for me to relax a bit about this issue and enjoy where we live.

I’ve wondered many times who will marry my older children. Will they be the same color? I couldn’t care less, but many people don’t feel that way. I love how Moses married a black woman, and God honored their marriage. In fact, he caused Miriam to have leprosy for making fun of his black wife. I wish I could do that sometimes. I pray that my children marry godly spouses. I don’t care what color they are. I also pray that if they are a different race that the extended family will accept them just for whom they are.

So tonight I rest my head…thrilled that we live in an area that accepts my family and go to a church that loves my family! We have quite the array of color. I’m anxious to see what our new little one will look like.

I would love it if she was as dark as her big sister. Boy, wouldn't that turn a few heads. *snicker snicker*

My husband and I have been trying to explain to our teenagers the importance of praising the Lord through song. I’m beginning to wonder if it will ever make any sense to them. I myself LOVE to sing…especially to the Lord. I've noticed since Uriah died that the lyrics of many songs I sing have such a new and different meaning. Heaven seems so much sweeter, God’s grace is much more meaningful, and Jesus’ love is more precious.

Tonight in church we let little Asher sit with us during the song service. He loves music more than any other child I have ever known. He always wants me to sing to him, and he LOVES to sit on his daddy’s lap and listen to him play the piano. So it only made sense to let him enjoy the song service. I've tried many times to get him to sing. The closest thing he’s done is say e-i-e-i-o. Tonight we were singing a song Steve Green used to sing called “Lamb of Glory”. Asher was sitting all relaxed on Jesse’s lap. He suddenly sat up and stared at me while I sang. Within a few seconds he started singing, “Ha-way-woo-ya….ha-way-woo-ya!” Hallelujah wasn’t even a part of the song. Well, it wasn’t one of the words in the lyrics, but for some reason Asher heard ‘Hallelujah’. I’m positive that’s what God heard as well. I couldn’t keep from crying. Did the Lord cry? I don’t know, but I do know that was the most precious sound I had heard in a very long time.

Abner mentioned on the way home that it was very distracting when Asher sang so loud. He was right…it was distracting but in a very good way. I wish the whole world would have been distracted by his innocence. I wish the whole world could be distracted by God’s unconditional love, grace, and forgiveness.

We had a little singspiration at our house tonight...

He was really getting into it!

So was daddy :o)

Make a joyful noise unto the Lord!

This past Sunday a man sat in front of me holding a new baby. The baby was nestled into his neck sleeping soundly. Every so often this man would tip his head down and kiss the baby’s head and linger for a moment to catch that sweet baby smell. I have to admit I was a bit jealous. There just isn’t anything like holding a new baby. Do you remember the first time you held your children? I do…and with each one it was pure love and happiness.

Each morning my alarm clock is my little 20 month old Asher. He shares a room with his older brother, but for some reason the older brother is deaf in the morning. ;-) It
doesn’t matter how tired I am…when I hear Asher start to jabber away each day it brings a smile to my face. While we were on vacation I would wake up and call for him. He would start talking “his talk,” and come running to my side of the bed. I would pull him up on my lap and he would continue to tell me…well, I’m not sure what he was telling me, but I could tell it was VERY important! When he was finished with his tale or request he would jump off the bed and go back to whatever it was he was doing before. I LOVE these moments with him. I crave these moments with him. My older kids will come and talk to me, but it doesn’t seem as often anymore, and this makes me sad.

I began to think about my heavenly Father, and I wonder if He feels this way about me. Does he look forward to my first word to Him in the morning? Does it bring a smile to His face? Does He miss it when I forget or don’t have time? Does He love it?
Does He crave it? I believe the answer to all of those questions is YES!!!!!!!!! I can picture Him tilting His head down as I sleep and kissing the top of my head…lingering to catch my fragrance. I believe He sits with anxious anticipation waiting for me to wake and talk to Him. Sometimes when I talk to Him it doesn’t make a lick of sense, but I think He understands anyways.

Zephaniah 3:17
“The Lord your God is in your midst,
A victorious warrior.
He will exalt over you with joy,
He will be quiet in His love,
He will rejoice over you with shouts of joy.

Isn’t that something??? He will rejoice over me with shouts of joy! That’s how I
feel about my children. How much more must God feel that way about me. No, I’m
not perfect…not even close. Yet, He loves me, He exalts over me, and He shouts for joy. All I can do is shake my head in amazement, and talk to Him each morning. I want to always bring a smile to His face!

After moving to our new home almost 2 years ago I never even thought about where I would find fresh produce. Last year we had so many issues with Phebe I didn’t get to put many things up. My poor son was about ready to have me horsewhipped if I didn’t provide him with more homemade strawberry jam.  I started asking around about where to find fresh strawberries and I finally received a good lead on fresh berries…even though it was 40 minutes away.  It actually ended up being further away than that because I forgot my purse and had to go back ½ ways to meet up with my hubby who was kind enough to bring it to me.

When I was asking around about berries everyone kept asking what I did with them. When I told them I made jam they started asking to come and watch because they had never made it. I was amazed at how many people had never done this. So I planned on having a group of ladies over for a fun evening of jam making. However, no one’s schedule seemed to match up with mine. Sooooooooooooooooo I am going to post how I make my freezer jam.

I've been making this since I was a teenager and I hope to soon pass the torch of jam making on to one of my children.  

Yeah right!

Asher isn't allowed to have jam...too much sugar. So he eats the berries til they come out his ears.  :o)

These are all the ingredients.

These are the supplies I use. (I forgot to put the whisk in the picture)

This is 4 quarts of berries. This is also the boring part. Don't tell my kids...I tell them this is the best part.  ;-)

The finished product...nice and clean!

OK so this is how the recipe says to mash them. I used to and then I woke up...20 years later. Grrrr!!!!

Once I wised up I started using a food processor.  Just remember to keep it chunky. At least that's how we like it.

In a saucepan pour 3 cups of sugar. Isn't that nuts? This is the low sugar recipe too!

Then add a box of Sure*Jell, whisk well, and add 1 cup of water.

Heat over medium heat, and stir until your arm breaks off. 

After it comes to a rolling boil stir for another minute. Ok, so my first batch I have no clue how long it boiled because poor Mr. Asher was having a nervous breakdown I needed to attend to. 

Pour boiling mixture into 4 cups of crushed berries. Stir for another minute.

Pour into 2 cup containers.

Let them set for 24 hours before placing them in the freezer. 

4 quarts of fresh berries will actually make 8 containers. I made 24 containers tonight and plan to make 24 tomorrow.  I'm hoping this will last us a couple of years.

I don’t know when it started.

I feel as if it has been my whole life, or at least as long as I can remember.

I don’t feel lovable.

Does that make sense?

What I mean is I don’t feel like anyone could ever love me.  I’m not sure why I have felt this way.  I often wonder if it’s because my birthmother gave me up for adoption.  How was I not good enough for her as an infant to not be loved?  My mom (adopted mom) always said that my biological mom loved me most to be able to let another family raise me. I’ve never believed that.

As a child the only time I felt loved is when I did something right and my family praised me.  I really shouldn't say “as a child” because I’ve felt that way even as an adult. I’ve written before about not really believing God could love me. I’ve just never felt worthy of His love, but 2 ½ years ago I finally accepted that God did love me. I realized there was nothing I could do to make Him love me less and nothing I could do to make Him love me more.  What an amazing day that was.  I finally realized that being His child made Him love me unconditionally.  That was it!

This has not carried over into my everyday life however.  I still didn’t believe that people loved me.  This included my family and friends….yes, even my husband.  It’s not as if he never told me…I just didn’t believe him. I’ve been married before and have heard “I love you” many times.  If it was true I believe I would have never been divorced…twice.

Jesse, however, is a whole new story. I have NEVER met ANYONE who is as patient as he. I will be the first to admit that I have NO patience. It’s really quite ridiculous. He has helped me greatly in this area!

When Jesse and I first started telling each other that we loved the other I thought he was lying. I have told him many times how I feel. He just continued to proclaim his love.  Others have done the same thing, but Jesse didn’t stop with words.   I have said hundreds of times that actions speak louder than words. He has proven this to be true. I hate to admit this but during the first year of knowing each other I did everything I could think of to get him to leave me. I didn't have any desire in the world to get married again and have him leave me. I ignored him, belittled him, made fun of him, and even told him to leave. He never said a word. He just continued to love. When our son died I honestly thought that when I came home from the hospital Jesse would be gone. I felt like Uriah was really the only reason Jesse stayed with me. So when he died I thought Jesse would be in the wind. Instead he continued to love me. When my daughter started having numerous medical issues and the medical bills grew to new heights I asked him when he was going to leave. Who in their right mind would stay around through something like this? He just shook his head at me and loved.

He’s done so many things for me…too many to list.  I find it amazing that a couple of months ago was when I finally realized he loved me. You’ll laugh when I tell you when I knew. Jesse had been working two jobs and was rarely home. I was pregnant again and quite sick and, to be honest, very depressed. It was a Saturday and he was working around the house…doing things I would have normally done in the past. By the end of the day he was exhausted. I was upstairs getting the baby ready for bed and he came in to kiss me good-bye. I asked him where he was going and he said he was taking the van into town to vacuum it out. Jesse HATES vacuuming the van. The last time I got him to do it was just before bringing Asher home from the hospital. He knew I couldn't do it and he knew I wanted it done. Jesse is a typical man and never seems to notice when the vehicle needs to be vacuumed.  I used to do it every Saturday…silly me. Anyway, I turned to Asher and said, “Asher, your daddy really loves me and I hope you grow up to be just like him.” Jesse just smiled and headed to town. I sat there and cried my eyes out. Why? Because it was the first time in my life I felt unconditional love from another human. I’m 41 years old and had never felt that before. I truly believe there is nothing I can do to make him love me more or love me less. What an amazing feeling!

Why am I writing this? Because I want the world to know what a wonderful man I have. I want my husband to know I finally realize he is telling the truth. I want any man or woman out there that wonders if anyone could love them to know that the answer is YES! I want to thank my Lord and Savior for bringing Jesse into my life. I want people to possibly learn to love unconditionally. I want to tell my husband, “Honey, I love you with all of my heart and I am so proud to call you mine!”
April 2012

Outside my window…is still and dark. I love the night-time. 

I am thinking…that I should have never agreed to get a dog. 

I am thankful...for my wonderful husband. 

From the kitchen...was homemade goulash.

I am wearing...maternity clothes…again. 

I am remembering...what it felt like to be thin. 

I am going...no place for the rest of the week. This makes me very happy! 

I am praying…for a healthy pregnancy and our new baby girl. 

On my mind…is how many things I NEED to do. 

I am hearing...Asher jabber himself to sleep, Jesse on his computer checking work and eating his dinner, Phebe doing dishes, and Abner singing one of his crazy songs. 

Around the house...is a lot of dog hair. That dog sheds more than any other. 

Noticing that….being a mom again at an “older” age is far better than a “younger” age.

Pondering these words…”WOW”…It’s one of Asher’s new favorites.

One of my favorite things...is making others laugh. 

A picture thought…I miss all of Asher’s curls.

Have you ever had anyone do something for you that you could never repay the favor? I have been in that predicament for the last year. I am so thankful that I can’t even express my gratitude.

My last baby, Asher, was born the end of October of 2010. One thing that I had looked forward to the most was breastfeeding my son.

My first time feeding Asher Oliver in the NICU.

Uriah, his brother, died 10 months before that. One of the most difficult aspects of his death was that I was never able to feed him. I had pumped colostrum for him, but he was never able to use it. Not only did I go through the grief of losing my son, but then I had to suffer the physical pain of “drying up.” I remember at his funeral that I was in so much pain from this I couldn’t think.

Anyway, I was truly looking forward to feeding my next baby. He was a preemie so I was not able to breastfeed him until he was a week old. I had been pumping up to that point but, as I found out later, not often enough. I should have been pumping every couple of hours. Instead, if someone came to visit I didn’t want to be rude and leave for ½ hour. So I would wait for them to leave, and then the nurses would tell me that the doctors would soon be making their rounds and I wouldn’t want to miss that so I would put it off. I had no clue this would affect my supply. After being in the hospital a week we headed home. He was nursing very well. I was so excited.

After being home a couple of days I could tell he wasn’t getting enough. He wanted to nurse all the time. He wouldn’t even wait 15 minutes between feeds. If I tried to express my milk there was none. I had nursed my first son 11 years prior. He had also ALWAYS been hungry so I supplemented with formula. I also worked full time back then with quite a bit of overtime. I was too nervous to take my pump to work (State Prison) so I would just wait until I got home to try to pump. Every time I tried to pump I couldn’t get a drop. Even after working 16 hours straight I would get nothing. He still loved to nurse, but I honestly don’t believe he ever got much of mommy’s milk. When he was 4 months old I gave up.

So here I was 11 years later with a bit more knowledge of the importance of nursing. Asher LOVED to eat, but was eating practically around the clock. At 2 weeks of age he went in for his first doctor’s visit. He had not gained an ounce. I knew then that we had a problem. My hubby and I had done quite a bit of reading on how bad formula can be for a baby. I felt absolutely awful. Why couldn’t I feed my baby? I read all of the books, websites, and talked to multiple lactation consultants. No matter what I did I couldn’t build my supply. I even tried a prescription…to no avail.

When we left the NICU he weighed 5#. A week later he still weighed 5#.

I had heard some staff members at the hospital talking about donated milk. I can only imagine the look on my face when I overheard this. Seriously? People actually use other moms’ milk? The thought of this totally grossed me out. After getting home from the doctor’s office that day I decided to do a bit more research on this. There was a local milk bank, but they charged $9 an ounce. Eek! I found a lady on Facebook from Canada, Emma Kwasnica, who had started a type of “Meals on Wheels” for babies. It was actually called “Eats on Feets” at the time. There was so much wonderful information on this site and I seriously started considering it. My hubby and I ended up calling Emma in Canada…a rather expensive phone call, by the way. She was crazy helpful. She not only explained the benefits of the milk, but the benefits of continuing to breastfeed. So Jesse went out and bought us a supplemental nursing system (SNS). The SNS ended up bringing me to tears so many times that I gave up after a few weeks. It was so funny…there is a breastfeeding center at our local hospital. I called them in tears over the SNS once and they had me come in. Of course, for that feeding Asher latched on EVERY single time without a single solitary problem. I went home all excited. Started the next feeding and he refused….yet again.

I immediately hooked up with two wonderful milk mommies. I sit here crying at my computer just thinking about what they sacrificed to feed my son. We have had over 15 milk mommies who donated. Some moms lived so close we were able to use the milk before it was frozen. Some moms I couldn’t get a ton of info on so we would pasteurize their milk. I remember getting up in the night to pasteurize milk. Yes, I would much rather just have rolled over and nursed my son, but sometimes we don’t always get what we want. Instead I would nurse him for a total of 40 minutes and then pasteurize and then feed him his bottle. This was every 2 hours around the clock for many, many weeks.

He burped like a pro. His brother was so proud!

At his following appointments he was always in the 50th percentile for weight.

My son was able to use, almost exclusively, breast milk for the first 14 months of life. To me that is an absolute miracle. He has tons of antibodies he would have never gotten. He has tasted a variety of foods. By the way the old wives tale of babies not being able to tolerate certain foods was totally proven false to me through this experience. He never once had a single tummy ache from someone’s milk. He’s been protected from illnesses, infections, allergies, obesity, and so much more. We have traveled all over Michigan, and even Indiana to get milk. We even received milk from a lady from California, when she visited family in Michigan.

Here I am all these months later not having a clue how to thank these moms. Not only did they sit and feed their own babies, but they also sat and pumped for mine. Can you even imagine the amount of time this took? Every single one of these ladies was a stranger, except for one. They didn’t know me or my baby from Adam. Yet, they were willing to bring nourishment and love to my son. Isn’t that amazing?

I’m praying with all my heart that I will be able to feed my own baby next time, but if not I’ll know what to do. Thank you milk mommies for your sacrifice, your empathy, and mostly for loving my son!

A couple of my awesome milk moms.

I can’t believe two years have passed since you’ve been in my arms.
It seems like only yesterday we turned off those alarms.

You felt so warm and heavy as you nestled in real near.
I knew the end was coming fast; my heart was full of fear.
I’d thought so often, for 40 weeks, about what you’d be like.
I figured you’d look like your dad, and act like mom for spite.

You did look like your daddy how you act we still don’t know,
but I suspect you’re full of spunk and put on quite the show.

We miss you more than words can say, and wish that you were here.
It seems there’s something missing and that something’s you my Dear.

I try to think about what you’d be like on earth.
Walking, talking, running too, and filling us with mirth.

Your sister’s an adult now and a beautiful young woman.
Your brother Abner’s growing tall and always full of fun.

Your little brother, Asher, has been a healing balm.
The Lord knew what we needed to feel a peaceful calm.

I wish with all my heart I could hold you on my knee,
and make you giggle, sing you songs, and fill your heart with glee.

I know you’re happy where you are and I won’t take that from you.
It’s just I miss you baby boy, and wish I were there too.

The time will come someday I know and we will be together.
The giggles, songs, and silliness will then last for forever.

I love you Uriah my little boy you’ll always be.
You’ll never know the peace and love that you have given me.

Throughout the day today I have thought back to what was happening at that particular time 2 years ago. Waking up feeling little Uriah have strange hiccups. I remember the contractions starting, the epidural, giving birth, and the silence when Uriah was delivered. Oh how I hate remembering the silence. It’s not that I needed someone to say anything, or that I needed to talk. I needed to hear my baby cry. It never happened though.

I remember going into shock and my body shaking uncontrollably for 2 hours straight. I remember being wheeled into the NICU to see my son. I remember the sounds of the monitors, the hush of the staff working with him, how he smelled, and how he needed to be cleaned up. I asked the nurse if I could clean him. She told me it would be too much stimulation. She said I could touch him, but not to rub or pat him…again, too much stimuli. He felt so cold. I remember pulling my hand away. The nurse explained that they were lowering his body temperature in hopes of bringing back some brain activity. I remember the silence of the nurse when I asked if I should pump milk for him. Her silence told me the truth of what was really happening. I remember being scared, I remember wanting to run. I wanted to run far, far away. I didn’t want to be in that room with that cold baby. I asked to be taken to my room.

My room…not what I had envisioned. As they wheeled me into the room I saw what looked like a postcard on my door. The picture was of a green leaf with a teardrop in the middle. I didn’t know what it meant. I learned later it meant that I had a baby that had either died or was going to die. I remember the silence of my room. I could hear people talking and sniffling in other rooms, but no babies. I couldn’t hear the squeaky cries of a newborn. I remember the sadness. At that time I decided I wouldn’t go back. I couldn’t bear to see my baby that way. I wanted to remember him as I had dreamt about him, not as he was. Not with tubes and wires and needles. Not with dried gunk all over his body. I couldn’t figure out what I had done wrong. Why was this happening? This was not what I was supposed to be feeling.

My friend came to encourage me. She unfortunately understood how I was feeling. She knew what I NEEDED to do. She hauled my rear-end back to that NICU. I will never be able to thank her enough. She told me I needed to make memories…she was right. By the time I went to bed that night I was one hopeful mommy. I had pumped milk for my baby. I had prayed for my baby. I knew my God was the Great Physician. I KNEW he could heal Uriah. I went to bed with hope in my heart.

When I pray I try to always say, “Lord I only want this if this is what You want.” It’s a very difficult thing to say and mean. That day 2 years ago was the most difficult it had ever been.

Have you ever looked through a keyhole in an old house? Imagine for a minute peering through that hole. Can you see that huge king size bed with silk sheets and draperies hanging from the four huge bedposts? What about that ginormous garden tub in the corner surrounded by plants and candles? The little reading nook in the back is so unique. There are pillows everywhere and books lining the floor-to-ceiling bookshelf. The sunshine streaming through the windows makes you wonder if you want to take a nap in its warmth or read a book by its light. Isn’t it beautiful? I could spend a month in there without ever wanting to leave…especially if my favorite foods were delivered. ;o) The problem lies in our view. It’s only through that stinkin’ keyhole.

God looks from above and can see the bedbugs lying in wait for a warm body. He sees the mold under the paint that will cause our lungs to burn. He hears the rats as they run through the walls. He knows this is not the room for us. He loves us too much to give us a room like that. So he steers us away. Some of us cling to that doorknob as if our life depends on it. Some of us look back longingly. Some of us follow reluctantly. Some of us run to follow Him. I will admit right now. I didn’t run to follow Him, but I knew whatever He decided was what was best for me. Why? Because He loves me completely. I don’t know what Uriah’s future on earth may have been. What if it was full of pain? I would much rather he was safely in heaven with my Savior waiting for me, than to have him suffer at all on this earth. Why? Because I love him completely. The best thing in all of this is I get to spend eternity with him. Not only that, but I now have another little boy that would have NEVER been had Uriah lived. Oh, Asher is such a joy! Yes, he is a typical 1 year old that makes me want to pull my hair out at times, but he is exactly what I needed. He is exactly what my Father wanted me to have. He is my hope.