Monday, June 28, 2010

Journey of Emotions

Grandma Daisy

What a Journey down the path of {EMOTIONS} this past week has been.  In just 7 days I have experienced every emotion known to man.  I guess the Lord is making sure I am prepared for the Mission ahead.  In just 10 days Trenton and I will depart the United States bound for Africa.  I can't believe the time is almost here.

Last Saturday Grandma Daisy suffered a stroke. {fear, anxiety, worry}  It was sudden and I can't say that I am ever prepared to lose someone I love.  She hung on for 4 days which gave us all a time to say goodbye. {sadness, regret, apprehension}   It was very emotional.  We were given the opportunity to share with each other, cry and pray.  We spent time with friends and loved ones that we hardly ever get to spend time with.  I was afforded the opportunity to talk to my little guys about death.

It was a busy week as it was the last week of school.  There were awards ceremonies to attend {pride}, end of the year field trips {enthusiasm}, last day of school parties and then Graduation on Wednesday {happiness}.  Trenton graduated from 8th Grade, Megan (my niece) and Kamille (Taylor's Girlfriend) Graduated from High School.  The next morning Grandma Daisy made her way to Heaven {sadness, grief}.  At times I feel that I move through life on auto-pilot.  Going and doing, saying and praying, plugging along. {optimistic}

Thursday Trenton and I received our Hepatitis Shots and I had a reaction.  I broke out in itchy hives and got really tired. {worried} Perhaps a culmination of the emotional week I had just had.  Taylor had a probation appointment and was not even drug tested.  I was baffled.  I am not sure what the purpose of "being on Formal Probation" is if they do not even see him but once a month and do not even test him!  {frustration, offended}

Friday morning we sent Team One off on the Road To Rwanda Mission.  It was wonderful to hug our friends who are going before us and send them off with a prayer.  {confidence, happiness, love}  I then got to spend the day celebrating Turner's 7th birthday early - as I will be in Africa on July 18th.  Chloe's friend Danyale got us tickets to Sea World.  It was a great diversion for Megan to also get away and have fun with us.  The 3 girls and I toted my 2 lil ones all around Sea World and we had a blast! {exhaustion, happiness}

Saturday night Taylor, Kamille, Trenton and Monique went to the Lake to see a concert.  Some choices  were made and my super mom intuition had kicked in.  I knew something was up with they all wanted to spend the night at Kamille's.  I put my foot down and insisted that I pick Trenton up.  I am glad I did.  Sadly I found out that my trust had been broken {disappointment, betrayal}.  Taylor is eligible to return to rehab July 3rd based on availability.  Pray that he gets in so that I will not worry while I am away {fear, gratitude}.

My husband has been down with the flu for several days and I am praying that I do not get it prior to leaving for our trip. {vulnerable, weakness}

Today is the start of a new week {apprehension}.  I have so much to get done and so much to purchase before we leave {astonished}.  I have no money to purchase all our necessities {trust} as I do not get paid on my photo orders until the day we leave! {resentment} I will just have to trust that God has it all under control.  

The Services for Grandma Daisy will be on Thursday and Friday.  Her viewing on Thursday night in Cypress at Forest Lawn and a Grave Side Burial on Friday morning.  We will celebrate her life with a Memorial Service at Saddleback Church at 11:30 am on Friday July 2nd in Tent 3 - with a Reception following at the Harmsen/Artiano Home.

Pray for us all during this EMOTIONAL JOURNEY.  

Matthew 11:28-30 "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Twenty Two Days

One of my favorite numbers...22.  
Two plus Two = 4...God gave me 4 BOYS!

In just 22 days we will be on a plane bound for Africa.  Wow.  I didn't think a year ago that the time would come so fast!  I am so excited!

The past few weeks have been very challenging.  Today is a good day.  Taylor was released from the Phoenix House for "falling off" his sobriety path.  He went to court and was given another court date - he has 30 days to get back into the program.  He is eligible to return to the Phoenix House on July 3rd barring any drug use.  He went to see his Probation Officer and he needs to return on the 24th to be tested.  If he tests positive he will face 6 months in jail.  He started new meds and has his good days and his bad.  Today is good.  That is all I can ask for.

Tonight we have Kids Small Group Graduation.  I am so sad to see the year end.  I loved every minute of leading Class 101.  I am looking forward to teaching a Summer 101 Class with Kamille when I return from Africa.  I am sure the Summer will fly by and it will be time for Class 201 in no time.  I love each of my students.  Unique, each one in their special way.  It has been a joy to serve.  I think I got more from them than they did from me!

Tomorrow Turner is being recognized at his school for his outstanding Respect, Integrity and Responsibility.  I am so proud!  Friday Trevan will attend a screening at Westpark Elementary.  He is going to repeat Kindergarten next year at a new school with Turner.  They will start on July 26th just 2 days after I return home from Africa.  Short summer for them as the new school year round.  Friday night we have our Rwanda Team Pot Luck Dinner and send off for Team One.

Next week is filled with field trips, end of the year party, Trenton Graduates from 8th Grade, Kamille and Megan Graduate from High School, Trenton and I get more shots for Africa, Taylor visits Probation and then we end the week with a trip to Sea World with Chloe and Danyelle!  Whew!  Hope I make it!

Lord give me strength!

How can I complain?  Lots to celebrate and rejoice in!  Thank you Lord! <3

Off to Kids Small Group - last night for the year! :o(


Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Forcast today...Foggy with a chance of SUN

I wish I could go back in time to the days where I had just Taylor.  Walking along the beach as a young family.  What could I have done differently?  This is the age old question.  If you had to do it all over again, what would you change?

We can't go back.  We can't change the past.  We can only focus on the here and now.  

My here and my now is covered in a deep, dense fog.  I feel like I could sleep for days.  I am in a mode of confusion.  The past four days have been a living nightmare.

Thursday afternoon we got a call from Taylor.  He told us that after nearly 50 days of sobriety, he fell into the snare of temptation.  He used drugs and got kicked out of the Phoenix House.  Our world was once again turned upside down.  

We knew that one day, he could stumble and fall.  We had just not prepared ourselves.  We had no plan in place.  Confusion set in.

Over the course of the next four days we dealt with drugs, pain, confusion, anger, hurt, remorse, guilt, addiction, mistakes, psychosis, illness, mental confusion, withdrawl, tears, violent outbursts, exhaustion, a hospital visit, sleeplessness, fear, uncertainty, doctor's appointments, phone calls, fighting, arguing, helplessness, hopelessness, surrender - the list goes on and on.

We do not know what tomorrow holds.  I don't even know what the next hour holds.  I am weary and burdened.  I know that God will give me rest.  I am just waiting for that to happen.  I am confused.  I am worn down.  I am trying to give it up to God, and not just "give up".  It is just so hard to do.  I struggle.  I fall.  I get back up.  I hold on to HOPE.

Taylor made a mistake.  It is now up to him to do the right thing.  He is to appear in court on Thursday.  In all probability he will go to jail.  He will face the consequences of his actions.  

Is this what I want for my son, no.  Do I have any control over it, no.  I have to accept that whatever happens - it is in God's plan.  I know that God has a plan for his life and for mine.  I have to TRUST in that.  It is all I can do.

I have a lot on my plate.  I want a peace that surpasses all understanding.  I am preparing my heart to go on a Mission half way across the world.  I can not let Satan steal my focus, my clarity.  I will fight each step of the way to keep my eye on the prize.  Giving it all to God, the pain, the glory, the disappointments the victories.  

He has it all figured out.  

I just have to rest in that.

Pray for me, pray for us.  Prayer is powerful - this I know.


Wednesday, June 2, 2010

36 days and counting!

Last night I got the honor of meeting Pastor Francis from Christ Gospel Fellowship Church in Rwanda.  I met his wife Dorothy a couple of years ago.  At that time, I found out that they are involved with The ABC Foundation 

Here is some info on their program: 

Mission and History
Abana B’umwami Children’s Foundation

   Abana B’umwami Foundation started in 2002 in Kigali, Rwanda as a sponsorship program to provide tuition and school supplies to the children of Rwanda. Under the direction of Pastor Francis Mutabazi, the program initially supported 40 children, either orphaned or living in extreme poverty.

   A small team of missionaries from Calvary Chapel La Habra (CCLH) ventured to Rwanda in 2005 and had the opportunity to meet most of these children and many many more in need of support. At the same time, Pastor Francis and his community were praying for an answer, as the support for the program was not enough to meet the needs. 
   The team from CCLH came back with a burden to participate in this foundation. Within months of coordinating with Pastor Francis and presenting the needs to the body at CCLH, the Abana B’umwami foundation was not only able to continue to support the 40 original children, but it has grown to 200 children four years later. 
  With over 1 million orphans and over 101,000 child-headed households in Rwanda, there is a continual need that you can help meet.

I accessed their site and adopted a little girl named Rosine.  I am so pleased to share with you that I get to meet her when we are in Kigali!  If you would like to be involved by sponsoring a child check out their site! ABC HOME

I can't express how excited I am about our trip!  This Saturday Trenton and I will get our Travel Immunizations.  We have a huge praise.  Yesterday I was told how much we needed exactly for the shots.  I then prayed asking God to find a way - as I did not have the funds.  When I checked the mail I found a check in the exact dollar amount needed for the shots!  It was a payment from almost a year ago that had not found it's way to us until now.  Wow - God is amazing!

Just a reminder about the PEACE SKILLS TRAINING this Saturday at Saddleback.  If you are interested in going on a PEACE TRIP there are 17 modules to choose from!  

Check it out here:

Keep those prayers coming as we count down the days until we leave!
Thanks for being a part of our journey!