Sunday, January 30, 2011

THIS is what I've been wanting to say....

This is what I have been wanting to say for some time now. I'm glad to know I'm not the only one dealing with this spirit of infirmity in our household.

I'm also pleased to report that God is answering prayers and moving mightily in other ways!

Check it out!

I have no idea how to link to the actual I just copied and pasted it.

Sunday, January 23, 2011
All Dressed Up and Nowhere to Go

The Jones family has been under the weather for the last week. I came down with some kind of weird stomach bug last Sunday night. I tossed and turned all night with a horrible stomach ache that stuck around for several days. I finally consulted Dr. Google, who diagnosed me with a stomach ulcer. That would make sense since I tend to be an overly anxious person. Remember my resolution not to freak out about things?

When Jackson started complaining of a stomach ache on Wednesday, I knew my problem had been a virus and not an ulcer. That's good news. The bad news is that Jackson had to go through it and now a week later, this virus is still in our house! Jackson refused his breakfast this morning and said his stomach hurt. It sort of appeared as though he'd learned to wield the power of the bowel complaint and was using it dishonestly. Surely the virus was not still in his body five days later. I busied myself getting ready and we finally got in the car to leave. A minute down the road Jackson's complaints got louder and his face was as white as a sheet. Curtis turned the car around to drop us back off at home and I started crying. I just wanted to have a normal Sunday! My attitude was pitiful. The kids and I had missed Wednesday night church because of this, too. I was and am so ready for everyone to be healthy and for us to get our lives back to normal.

I had Jackson lay down in his bed and he didn't fight me. That's a pretty good sign that he wasn't bluffing. A few minutes later he was in the bathroom puking. Bless his heart. My pouty attitude quickly changed to compassion and thankfulness that God did not let Jackson get sick in the car or at church. This was the first time we've seen puke all week and I'm definitely grateful for that. Hopefully this is an extension of the first bug and not a new one. Ugh!

So many weird health issues have come up lately that I'm wondering if there is a spiritual component to all of it. If the Lord brings us to mind, will you pray for my family that this infirmity would leave our house? I know without a doubt that there is a spiritual battle going on around our family - and yours too - and I would be grateful for any of my friends' prayers for our marriage and children.

As weird as this sounds, when we turned off our TV we became much more aware of the battle. For example, one day I started feeling unreasonably afraid for my kids' safety. It had been quite a while since I'd fretted about it and this paralyzing fear came out of nowhere. I might have blamed it on something scary I'd seen on TV, but that was no longer an issue. Because I was able to discern the source of this fear as darkness and not truth, it was easier to reject it and not let it set up shop in my mind. (I'm sorry I keep talking about the TV thing, but it has brought so much fruit into our lives.)

God is building our faith and giving us vision, which is incredibly exciting. He is answering prayers that we've been praying for years, but it has definitely turned up the heat. Pray that we will not shrink back from the enemy's intimidation, but that we will fight the good fight and believe our powerful, almighty God. Thank you, friends.

Ephesians 6:10-20

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.

The web address is...

Saturday, January 15, 2011

The sickness/bacteria/germs in this post are just staggering, I tell you.

So I walk into the waiting room and the receptionist says, "Have you been here before?" And I look at her and in my funny and yet sarcastic, drop.dead.serious. voice I say, "Oh yes. This is my third time here in a week...but I'm out of children now so I don't anticipate coming back any time soon." She looked at me with an, "I'm really sorry I asked/I'm really sorry" look and handed me the SAME EXACT piece of paper that I have already initialed TWICE in a week so that I can initial it yet again...this time...barely legible. halfway on purpose. not really. ok kind of.

But let me start at the beginning.

A long, long time ago.....scratch that.

Ten days ago, Caleb started feeling pretty yucky because of the huge-gantic, ginormical pollen count that we have been experiencing here in the hill country. Paul took him to the Urgent Care on Friday and they determined that he had tonsilitis. So they gave him some meds and we began the process to we thought.

On Sunday he was still feeling really crappy and so I took him back to the Urgent Care and after long minutes and waiting and consoling my child who looked and felt h.o.r.r.i.b.l.e. they determined that on top of his tonsilitis he also had the flu. Good times. So we started more meds and NOW we are on the road to recovery...for real this time.

Skip to Tuesday. Caleb is back at school. Jacob is home from school. That's right. Jacob woke me up at 4:00 am with a significant fever. I took Caleb and Abby to school and then took Jacob back to the Urgent Care. I told them about Caleb, so they started with the flu test. Which by the way, takes 15 minutes to process. Do you know what there is to do in an exam room that is 1.way to warm and 2.way to small and 3.way to beige. Nothing...except for maybe look at my options for kicking my husbands tail at Words with Friends. ...anyway, back to the flu test. Negative. What? Are you sure? (that's what I said!) So on to the strep test. Positive. So they gave him some meds and we began the process to we thought.

Jacob did not bounce back from the strep like I felt he should and so for 5 days he laid on the couch and bed, eating nothing, drinking little and spiking high fevers every 4-6 hours. Today, Saturday if your counting, was the first day that he was upright and he ate 3 meals today...a record for the week.

But wait! I'm not done!

Abby has been complaining about her head hurting for the last couple of days. On Friday I really thought she was playing the "how come the boys get to miss school and I don't" card, so we let her stay home. She was spiking fevers every 4-6 hours all day on Saturday and we had decided to just let the sickness run its course. Until...

She was crying and her fever was on fire! I gave her some Tylenol and took her to the "Agent Care" (aka Urgent Care). That's when I had the little banter with the reception that I opened with. Fast forward.

And we waited and waited for Abby's flu test to be done. Side note: She was wearing her "What happens in Kindergarten, stays in Kindergarten" shirt and she said, "Mommy What GERMS happen in Kindergarten do NOT STAY in Kindergarten, they come home with me and get me sick!" We had a good little chuckle over that! Anyway...Abby tested negative for the flu and negative for strep. The doctor remembered me and Jacob and asked how he was. When I told her about his week long affair, she apologized and told me she should have gone with her gut. Which was to treat him for both flu and strep. That's just what she did for Abby. So they gave her some meds and we begin the process to healing...I hope, I pray.

I do not want to go back to the "Agent Care" no matter how nice they are.

Urgent Care Co-pay1 - $30
Meds round 1 - $48
Urgent Care Co-pay2 - $30
Meds round 2 - $132
Urgent Care Co-pay3 - $30
Meds round 3 - $8
Urgent Care Co-pay4 - $30
Meds round 4 - $132
...not to mention the countless bottles of Tylenol and Motrin...I've lost count

Being able to say, "My children are well." - I'll pay anything.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Warning...this post is raw feelings and emotion. Reader beware.

Well I hope you took heed to the warning in the title!

This is a post that is coming from a pretty raw place in my life right now. It all started almost a year ago when Paul and I really felt like God was calling me into a new place in my life. I went back to "school" and got my teaching certificate. (and by "school", I mean, 6 weeks of intense classes, reading, projects and a significant amount of money)

I finished and all I needed was a teaching job to complete the process. We felt so confident in the way that God was leading us. I had my first interview in May 2010 and waited and waited and waited to hear about the coveted job that I was seeking.

Well fast forward 8 months to January 2011. I have now been through the interview process 4...FOUR times and still have very little to show for it.

Don't get me wrong, I have a job, with the district, that I like. Which is MUCH more than many people have and for that, I am grateful. However I am so far away from where I thought I would be! I thought I would be in a Kindergarten classroom by now, teaching, using my gifts and knowledge.

Instead I have an aid position teaching preschoolers. Not a bad gig at all....just not the direction that I thought God was moving me.

I now have been passed over again. I will get to move to my kids' school (for those that know the full story) but it is a lateral move to another aid position. Please hear my heart when I say, I am THANKFUL that I get to move to my kids' school...again...just not at all where I thought I would be at this point.

Maybe my expectations were too high. But is that really possible with God? Is it possible for my expectations to be higher that His? I of course don't think so. Somewhere I went wrong, though. Or I'm not understanding His ways that are clearly higher than mine. Is He protecting me from something? Is He holding out on me? Is He saving something better for me?

For whatever reason, I know with my head that His best is always BEST. I struggle with believing that with the rest of my heart though. Because I cannot fathom what is better. I thought I knew what I wanted. I thought I knew what would best suit me. Apparently, I don't.

I'm so frustrated. Have I don't something so wrong that God is punishing me for my disobedience? Am I so far out of God's will that I can't even hear or trust Him with my decision? Honestly, I don't know.

I KNOW with all of my being that God has control and knows what is best for me. I also know that just because things are hard doesn't mean I'm out of God's will. But I. am. struggling. deeply.

This is arguably one of the hardest journey's I have been on with the Lord. I find it very difficult to decipher His voice from my wants and desires. My husband helps. a lot. but I must struggle through this. Honestly my desires and wishes continue to push to the front and it's a constant battle to hold them back long enough for me to hear what the Lord is saying to me. It's a constant battle with my flesh to hold back what I want in order to do what God wants.

...and I'm terrible at it...

God is still answering prayers for me though. For the longest time...and by longest time, I mean, this semester... I have wanted to be at the same school as my kids. That prayer has been answered...although...I'm so jilted about this whole process that I'm sort of at a "I'll believe it when I see it" attitude. I confess that attitude as sin though. I'm also to the point that I'm expressing my frustration to God. I believe He delights in my honesty and yet seems to be holding back on me in the answer department.

Of course I don't believe that God is really holding out on me. He can do as He wishes and is in much as I'll let Him be. Which is another area that I am struggling in. big.time.

What I really want is to hear Him more clearly in this situation. AND for His will to be my will. The problem is what I struggle with is I want my desires to be His will and at the same time MUST remain in His will because I KNOW it's the best place to be.

However, I can't see the forest for the trees. I can't hear God's direction because I'm so focused on what I thought He wanted for me. UGH!

I'm ready for this entire saga to be over, but I'm afraid it won't be over until I've learned what I'm supposed to learn from it. So I'm praying that God will be the Revealer to me over the next hours, days, weeks.

Above all, with tears streaming down my face, ABOVE ALL, I want more than anything to be in God's will for my life and for my family. I want what He wants, no matter how hard it is. I'm willing to do whatever. I may go kicking and screaming at times, but I'm going. I will serve Him. I will praise Him. I will trust Him.

Because I know He cares for me.