Monday, December 31, 2007
Daddy finally came home today!!! After 78 days in the hospital, Daddy came home on a beautiful sunny day, walked with his arm around me into his den and sat and enjoyed being with family. His speech is great, no longer slurred or hard to understand. He ate chicken and dumplings for lunch, especially made by my grandmother upon his request. He enjoyed coffee, tea and dessert, some fruit cookies too. He laughed and in between conversations watched Georgia Tech play along with the other guys. My brothers installed the new TV before Dad arrived home and so he and Mom were surprised to see it when they came in. There old one died while he was in the hospital. He was thrilled to have a new TV to enjoy while he recovered at home. Mom got re-acquainted with her chihuahua who was pouting at them for being gone so long. It was a great day filled with rejoicing and thanksgiving for the miracles done in Daddy's life.
I kid you not, just last Tuesday he was on a feeding tube, scheduled for stomach peg on Friday along with repairing his epiglottis, his speech was not right...Wednesday - the speech therapist came in and tested him with foods and she said it was a miraculous change from last week..Thursday he had a barium swallow test (again) and this time he PASSED!! Huge, HUGE praise!! The next day he was scheduled for surgery - CANCELLED! because God had healed those things!! Thank you, thank you to those of you who have prayed and prayed for Daddy - you are seeing answered prayer! Praise God!!
Next for Daddy: sees a plastic surgeon on Wednesday to talk about repairing a hole and mesh on his stomach that is not healed correctly. Then, asap, in a month he will need followup chemotherapy to finish off any cancer cells that may be left in his body. He is bummed about that, but willing to go ahead with it.
Thursday, December 27, 2007
This came to me from Desiring God blog and I thought it was so true!
(Author: Jon Bloom)
Each year Christmas night finds members of my family feeling some melancholy. After weeks of anticipation, the Christmas celebrations have flashed by us and are suddenly gone. And we're left standing, watching the Christmas taillights and music fade into the night.But it's possible that this moment of melancholy may be the best teaching moment of the whole season. Because as long as the beautiful gifts remain unopened around the tree and the events are still ahead of us, they can appear to be the hope we are waiting for. But when the tree is empty and events are past, we realize we are longing for a lasting hope.So last night, as Pam and I tucked our kids into bed, we talked about a few things with them:
1)Gifts and events can't fill the soul. God gives us such things to enjoy. They are expressions of his generosity as well as ours, but gifts and celebrations themselves are not designed to satisfy. They're designed to point us to the Giver. Gifts are like sunbeams. We are not meant to love sunbeams but the Sun.
2)Putting our hope in gifts will leave us empty. Many people live their lives looking for the right sunbeam to make them happy. But if we depend on anything in the world to satisfy our soul's deepest desire, it will eventually leave us with that post-Christmas soul-ache. We will ask, “Is that all?” because we know deep down that's not all there is. We are designed to treasure a Person, not his things.
3)It is more blessed to give than receive. What kind of happiness this Christmas felt richer, getting the presents that you wanted or making someone else happy with something that you gave to them? Receiving is a blessing, but Jesus is rightâ€”giving is a greater blessing. A greedy soul lives in a small, lonely world. A generous soul lives in a wide world of love.
It's just like God to let the glitter and flash of the celebrations (even in his honor) to pass and then to come to us in the quiet, even melancholic void they leave. Because often that's when we are most likely to understand the hope he intends for us to have at Christmas.
Monday, December 24, 2007
THen there were moments when he would think that there were little kids standing at his door and he would ask Momma,"who is watching those kids out there?" There were no kids in the hallway... these are the times when we are most concerned. He is not taking any meds like pain med that would make him disoriented. What is causing this and his inability to swallow and speak clearly? Pray that the scans this week will give us answers. It is really strange that he thinks so clearly and can carry on a normal conversation and then he gets this look on his face and asks some crazy question.
As I get ready for Christmas day tomorrow, I ponder my very first Christmas without my parents. I don't like the idea of it, but it is reality this year. Yes, they are in Atlanta and I can go there...we have plans down in Eastman with Keith's family for lunch. I think I will wait and take our kids up on Wednesday and have a more relaxed visit with them. They haven't seen Elijah since Oct. 15th and Robby has only been allowed up there once because of his age.
But this will be the 1st Christmas where we will not go to Mom's house and experience all of the traditional things we have done since I was a child. I will miss it!
Lest you think me ungrateful for the praises of Daddy's recovery, I am very, very grateful that Daddy is alive and fighting to come home. I guess all of these yrs. i have just taken for granted that we've been blessed to be together each yr.
MERRY CHRISTMAS, FRIENDS!
Saturday, December 22, 2007
Saturday, December 15, 2007
Friday, December 14, 2007
Check out my Ivey's new blog face @ http://jesus-freakz.blogspot.com
Keisha did it and she did a great job!! Ivey is just tickled! All for a great cause too!!
Also, my Dad got pneumonia this week, so he is out of rehab and back in the transplant unit until he get better. He still has only a feeding tube because his epiglottis is still not working properly. Please pray for that to heal soon! He wants some water to drink and he is constantly begging my Mom for it. She sometimes has to leave the room because it bothers her so.
Check out our New City website and listen to Keith's sermons! We now have them online. Go to www.newcitydowntown.org and click on media and you can listen...they are a blessing!!
I am so excited to go to a Christmas party tonight with my hubby! I am ready to be festive and have some fun!! Then next week I hope to do some baking...fudge (yum) and try some new things that I have never made...and then I always make fruit cookies because RObby loves them and especially my Daddy (he said to freeze his until he gets home).
Friday, December 7, 2007
This is her way of raising support! Check out her blog and her test pages to see if you would like one: www.walkerwalker.blogspot.com
Keisha and her husband Matt adopted their daughter,Faith, this year from China. They were touched deep in their hearts after visiting orphanages and feel compelled to pray for and do whatever they can to help these orphans.
Just a little about it:
blog re-designs are: $30.00
*right now ALL proceeds will go to help raise money for a BIG Baby shower coming up for Love without Boundaries & their new Cleft House. I am partnering up with Hope's Heart!
So, not that you "need" a new blog face, but you want to help raise money for this cause...please pray about it. Pray for Keisha and this cause and if you can... contact her and get a fantastic, new blog!!
Thursday, December 6, 2007
- Robby had a successful surgery and is doing great!
- Keith had a great birthday and we are so thankful for 40 healthy yrs. and for the adventurous journey God has placed him on! (Never a dull moment)
- We continue to receive surprises and anonymous gifts for the ministry of New City Church! God has definitely confirmed His calling on this church over and over!
- Daddy had his dialysis port removed yesterday! This means they are pretty sure he won't need that anymore!!! Mom called me to tearfully share the great news of this miracle!!!
- Rehab has tentatively set a coming home date for Daddy...December 19th!!! What an awesome Christmas present this would be for us :)
- Ivey has started working with her horse at a new boarding facility 5 minutes from our home, something she has been wanting to do for awhile now!
- We sold another puppy on Sunday and have a commitment for another one. ( 2 left)
- Daddy has taken steps this week with a walker!! Praise the Lord for progress!!
- God's provision as we have taken cuts each month in Keith's paychecks as he transitions out of his job at Mabel and into New City church.
We really are truly thrilled about Daddy being off of dialysis, this was not a sure thing, it has been a God thing! Now we continue to pray for his sugar levels to remain in a non-diabetic state so that he will not require insulin again. Also, we are praying for his swallowing to become normal again so that he can drink fluids and then eat normal foods again. Right now, he is still on a feeding tube because his throat muscles and all that stuff needs more therapy and healing to work normally again.
My heart truly is overflowing with thanksgiving for answered prayers and God's miraculous work in Daddy's life...not to mention in New City Church and in taking us through this time of transition from Mabel White to church plant. December 31 marks the end of our time at Mabel White and the sole commitment to New City Church downtown. A new year filled with watching God's work and being His vessel to minister to a lost city...can't wait!!!
Monday, December 3, 2007
- Daddy is now on the rehab floor, enjoying around the clock intense rehab. I talked with him tonight and he was letting me hear his speech therapy homework. It was funny!
- He is now off of dialysis until further notice!!!!!!! Big Praise! His kidneys seem to be getting rid of the toxins. We hope they keep getting better.
- He walked with the aid of a walker today up and down the hall, and also used the parallel bars to help him strengthen his body.
- His view from his room allows him to see the great big Christmas tree outside the hospital :)
- We sold puppy #2 on Sunday to a big family with 4 boys! This leaves us with 3, and one person coming tomorrow afternoon for a male!!
What a way to begin the week!
FYI: Robby has his rods removed from where he broke his leg (back in February) tomorrow morning in Atlanta around 10am. And Dec. 4th is Keith's big "40" birthday!!!!!!!!!! So... HAPPY BIRTHDAY LOVE!!!
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Anyhoo...I got my results yesterday. Turns out that I had a "tubular adenoma" removed, which means I will need to have the test done again in 2 years. I was really, really surprised..after all...I am only 38! :) I would not have even had this test until I was 50 if my doctor had not sent me for one...only because my Dad had colon cancer.
BTW: tubular adenomas are like precancerous polyps...if left alone to grow they most likely grow cancerous. SO, if this had been left alone, if we didn't know about my Dad's cancer, I would not have had this test for another 12 yrs. Yikes!
So, I am telling you this today with a very grateful heart! I am thankful that I knew I needed to have this test now, instead of 12 yrs from now.
Thank you, Heavenly Father, for giving me this information now and making me take care of it now! ( i hope you don't think I am over dramatizing this, it really strikes so close to home for me). I don't care how unlovely this test may seem, you won't have to tell me twice to have another one! If you had seen what my Dad has been through this last year...that is unlovely! It has been downright nasty.
As for my Daddy: Keep fighting Daddy! We are cheering you home!!!
Monday, November 26, 2007
Thursday, November 22, 2007
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
He is still taking dialysis, but they were able to put in the feeding tube lower to allow him to get constant feeding. We hope this will help his kidneys with the protein they'll give him.
He also got a cap put on his trache yesterday and hope that by the end of the week, they can take the whole thing out!! He then will have swallow tests to see if he can swallow properly before he is given anything by mouth...then he can get rid of the dreaded feeding tube that goes down through his NOSE! Ughh!
We'll just keep praying and hope for more good news.
Monday, November 12, 2007
Mark Driscoll describes my husband: "Most of the time the leaders in the church think he is a troublemaker" ,but he's a DUDE!
and then there's the one about a bunch of nice, soft, tender "chickified" church boys:
Sunday, November 11, 2007
Now we are praying for his lungs to clear up, for his throat, vocal cords, trachea and esophagus to get back to working normally so that he will no longer need the trachea thingy (?)open . Right now they are giving him some oxygen through it and it is open to allow him to be suctioned when needed. He still has to mouth words to us unless he uses the voice device on his opening, which is not easy to use. Once he no longer needs this, he may move to the rehab floor.
This is good news to us, but he is ready to get out! Pray for him to be encouraged daily by his progress. If you would like to and would take the time, please send him a card with scripture or a prayer for him:
6th floor TU 21
Patient: D. Lynn Ivey
1968 Peachtree Rd.
Atlanta, GA 30309
This would be such a blessing for Momma and Daddy! Tomorrow will be 5 weeks they have been there and it can get pretty old looking at those four walls. Of course, Daddy has only been awake for about 1 1/2 weeks. But I think sometimes he wonders...Am I really going to get out of here and be at home again? We believe he will and are strongly encouraging him in that direction. So, if you can encourage him too! I have been telling him of my friends who are praying for him all over the country!
P.S. Pray that these puppies will sell! I really don't need to keep any!!
Wednesday, November 7, 2007
Sunday, November 4, 2007
But it is nice to see his eyes open and his head nodding when you talk to him. He is really weak, but has a strong desire to get well quickly. he is ready to go home in his head, but his body is not ready yet. He does not want Momma to leave him any. She won't leave the hospital, but she does have a room to stay in. Daddy is still in ICU on the vent, he did come off for 7 hrs. yesterday! He is taking dialysis some, but not continually. Therapy is coming in now to help him get his strength built back up. I am sure other types of therapy will work with him as well. He is definitely a fighter! Thank God for walking him through this! Keep praying for more progress!!To God be the glory!!
Friday, November 2, 2007
I had my first today and Mom and Grandmommy told me "oh, it's no big deal!" Well, tell that to the girl who was red all over by the time it was done! OMG, was it painful! I did not know they would include as much skin from my chest as would fit under that cold piece of plastic, which by the way, automatically compresses you until you turn blue! Ths pic tells it all!
Thursday, October 25, 2007
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
We are looking for baby steps with Daddy, it is a day by day, moment by moment thing looking for progress and signs that he is healing, getting stronger, fighting and able to hold his own. One good sign is a skin tear he has on his hand that has healed/healing on its own. That is a good thing! Who knew! His incision is doing well. It looks like he is fighting this infection. He just needs to continue positive steps.
Keep praying! Thank you for the encouragement through the calls and emails too!!
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Sunday, October 21, 2007
Bad news: I got a call from my Mom saying that Daddy had to be placed back on the ventilator late Sat. night. He was having a CT scan today at 2pm to see why he is running high temps and why his belly is so distended. I went up to Atlanta with my brother to see him and he just didn't look well. It broke my heart to see him trying so hard to breathe, even though the vent was doing it for him, he was breathing over the machine. The respiratory therapist said she wished he would just relax and let the vent do it for him. He is even heavily sedated, but still breathing short quick breaths. Anyway, we may know more tomorrow. He has hundreds of wires going everywhere...ugh! How do they know what is what! So, pray, pray, pray!!!
Friday, October 19, 2007
Thursday, October 18, 2007
A cardiologist has also been called in because of some heart issue that occurred during the surgery. I am not sure of what this will mean other than maybe some heart meds.
It is really hard to be here, when they are in the hospital in Atlanta, but I just haven't been able to go back since Monday. We are coming up on our next service this Sunday and it has been an extremely hectic week. I've also been trying to help with my Grandmother while Momma is away. I really hope to go and see them in a few days. Thankfully, Mom and I can talk several times a day, thanks to Verizon .
We have had so many people faithfully praying for Daddy! What a blessing and source of encouragement for them. I have seen such strength in my Mom this week, undoubtedly an answer to prayers! we look so forward to Daddy waking up to hear the good news of no cancer in his liver, or anywhere else that they know of! He hasn't had that good news in many months! Thank you Lord!!!
On another note...my husband and I will celebrate our 16th anniversary tomorrow!! Some sweet friends have offered to watch our kids while we enjoy a date! Thank you Caleb and Emily.
Monday, October 15, 2007
Praise God he was able to remove all of the tumors ( he believes) and he told us for the first time in a long time Daddy is considered NED: no evidence of disease!! Praise God! We as a family cannot wait for Daddy to wake up and get to hear that good news. The last 3 surgeries he has been told not so good news. SO we hope and continue to pray this will be the good news he hears very soon! We are learning to praise God for the daily battles that are won against this cancer. Tonight it was definitely a moment by moment battle.
He is not out of the woods yet, but there are many prayers being lifted on his behalf. I just know God has heard the name Lynn many, many times in recent days and hours. So we praise Him for everything He has brought us through and rest in His perfect will for the days ahead! I have no idea what tomorrow holds, but I am sure that the One who holds us is forever faithful! He will never leave us and never forsake us.
Thank you for your prayers and I am thankful that the prayers will continue in the days and weeks ahead.
Please remember Momma who is sleeping and staying in the ICU waiting area until he moves to a room. She can't wait to caress his sweet face and share the good news with her beloved. My heart ached for her tonight because she was grieving in her heart that she could not be with him and stand by him while he is in ICU, especially while he was in an unstable state. I stand truly amazed at the strength God has given her during this just incredibly trying, exhausting and difficult time!
I helped her the other day on the farm feed the calves...my 60ish yr. old mother carrying 5 gallon buckets full of feed into a pen filled with hungry calves. She could have refused to do all of the dirty, stinking things she has done since Daddy has been sick, but she has not complained one time about having to do all of the odd jobs that he cannot do. It has been only by God's grace that she has done this!
I've gotta give thanks for my awesome Mom in law who has taken the boys for 2 days and loved on them and taken great care of them, what a huge blessing and relief.
Well, I gotta get to bed!
Saturday, October 13, 2007
Friday, October 12, 2007
It is also great football weather! Robby had a game last night and the weather was nice and cool. Tomorrow morning they play Tatnall and I hope the get some pics to post. Robby loves to play and he is really good. He is so sweet off the field, but on the field he means business! Last night he broke through the line and went straight for this really little guy (the quarterback) and took him down. As Robby's mom it was great to watch, but I don't think I would have liked watching if I was the other guy's Mom. Anyway, Robby's team won, the team worked so hard together and had a great game!
I think we are heading to the fair this weekend! Pics to come...
One more note: Daddy will be having 2/3 of his liver removed on Monday morning. The surgery is scheduled for 7:30 am in Atlanta at Piedmont Hospital. Please pray for him, the docs and staff who take care of him and Mom!!
Friday, October 5, 2007
These are tough times we are in right now. I guess I would rather be here than out of God's will, but it is still rather difficult. SO... what is difficult about it, you might be asking... well there are a few tough things. My hubby is working way over 40 hour weeks as he has been for months. Last week for example, he worked 7 straight days and then started over on another full work week. (This is with his pay cut of 20%,...ahem.) (This I really find quite offensive) He still does everything he has done since he began working at Mabel. He really struggles to find time to be with us and then there is our new ministry. this is usually worked on late at night. So...
He is now fighting a cold which will most likely turn into a chest infection which will require antibiotics, mostly brought on by exhaustion and STRESS.
Thankfully, no stresses from New City! Things are going great with the church plant. New people calling often wanting to know more or get involved - great news!!
We continue to be blessed with encouragement from those who sense the spiritual battle going on around us. I read often the following scriptures:
**Psalm 31 - "In Thee O Lord, I have taken refuge; Let me never be ashamed; In Thy righteousness deliver me. Incline Thine ear to me , rescue me quickly; Be Thou to me a rock of strength, A stronghold to save me. For Thou art my rock and my fortress. For Thy name's sake
Thou wilt lead me and guide me. Thou wilt pull me out of the net which they have secretly laid for me, For THou art my strength."
**Psalm 62 - "My soul waits in silence for God only; From Him is my salvation. He only is my rock and my salvation, My stronghold; I shall not be greatly shaken."
This scripture has probably been the greatest encouragement for me during a time when the evil and wicked seem to be running freely and slandering & lies are the norm:
**Psalm 37 - Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him; Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, Because of the man who carries out wicked schemes. Cease from anger, and forsake wrath; Do not fret, it leads only to evildoing.
It seems for this season that evil and wicked are prospering by destroying lives; by lies and deceit prospering. But I have to wait patiently...when in my flesh I want to run and rescue and yell..."STOP IT". I have to wait and not fret. I have to cease from anger (this is a difficult one) and do not fret...just "rest in the Lord."
So, can I ask you to pray for us? Pray that I will cease from anger, fretting and wrath. I want to rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him. I know He will take care of us, but I need to "know". Pray for Keith who is extremely overwhelmed with his responsibilities...here, at Mabel and with New City. Pray for us as we seek partners to financially support our ministry. We drop in pay another 10% each month through Dec. and then we no longer have a "paycheck". We will be all New City in just a few months! Yikes!! We also cannot wait for that day to put all of our efforts into this new ministry that the Lord has laid on our hearts!
Sunday, September 30, 2007
So, what's your favorite smells???
Thursday, September 27, 2007
Also, I have posted my cousin's blog post from today because it is just awesome!! I am so excited to see God using them to love on their 3 boys adopted from Ethiopia and in the process grow their own faith. I hope you are blessed by it as much as I was.
What's in a Name?
My son's have very strong feelings about their new American names. It is a matter of absolute pride for them. They wield the name as a weapon sometimes by giving it back to us when they are angry. "I'm not a McConnell!", they sometimes shout. I usually simply shrug and say, "Ok, but you still must obey". There are a couple of instances that have revealed to me how much their name means to them.The day before school started the boys had an orientation at their school. It was a very exciting time and the whole family went to encourage them and give them support. They were enthralled by the desks, art on the walls, and they were especially encouraged to see that they had their own desk and their own locker. It was truly a thrilling moment for them. And then (I hate writing those words because it seems to happen so often..."and then") they noticed their name tags. Noah was first. Laminated on colorful plastic it read "Noah McConnell". He picked up his name tag, looked at it and then threw it down on the table with absolute disdain."Not my name!", he exclaimed. I picked it up and looked at it. Yes Noah, this is you. NO!! He became angry. Noah McConnell is not my name, no Patrick. Ah, I thought I got it and had a quick answer for him. It's ok, they just shorten your name for school. When Dad goes to work, people do not call him by his full name, just Patrick. At school you are Noah McConnell.But he would have none of it. My name is "Noah Zelalem Patrick McConnell"! Why no Patrick in name? I said, "Noah, you are still Noah Zelalem Patrick McConnell but at school your name is just "tennish" (short). It's ok, I tried to assure him. Josiah and Caleb had separate but identical responses. They were deeply offended that the name I use (Patrick) was not attached to their name. You see, in their culture the child takes on the father's first name as their last. The boys actually wanted to hack off the "McConnell" and just have "Patrick" as their last name.Tonight was another great example. I was trying to explain to Josiah how North, South, East and West worked on a map and he just couldn't get it. So I wrote his name in the middle of the compass and told him "this is where Josiah stands" and here are the ways you can go away from Josiah. He said, "oh, ok, I understand" and then he pointed to his name. "My name is Josiah McConnell when I am at school." I know son, but I am just trying to explain how a compass works on a scrap piece of paper and the important thing to know is that you are in the middle of the compass. "Ok. My name is Josiah McConnell." And he sat there and looked at me, waiting. I scribbled McConnell under Josiah on our little scrap piece of paper and he smiled."Thank you Daddy". You are welcome son.We played soccer the other day at a friends house. The McConnell boys (me included) were on one team and the other family competed against us. It was a very laid back and unstructured game to be sure - I have no idea about any of the rules in soccer except that you can't use your hands. We won the little game 5-2 and you should have seen my sons. They were running around the yard like they had just won the biggest soccer game in the century. And you know what they kept saying? "The McConnell Family won, the McConnell Family won, the McConnell family won." They were absolutely ecstatic.Today I was meditating on 1 Peter 2 and I noticed that Peter thought very highly of what is in a name. "But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession,"Peter was using several Old Testament pictures to describe the believer's position and relationship in the New Covenant with God and he used names. They are names or descriptive titles loaded with meaning and value and as believers we can study the meaning behind those names and have an even clearer picture of who we are. With titles comes a purpose, a direction; with an identity comes security. My son's are learning to find great security in carrying the McConnell name and we should find great security in caring the name of our Father.I have learned a great lesson from my son's and from Peter - knowing who you are means a great deal and it should impact the way that you live.
Posted by Patrick at 11:46 PM
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Felicity Margaret PiperSeptember 23, 2007 By: John Piper Category: Written Posts by John Piper, Ministry Updates
In the hopes that you will pray for us, I’ll give you the news about Abraham’s daughter. Abraham is my son who serves as the Web Content Manager for Desiring God. He and Molly were expecting their second child on Sunday, September 23. Molly was big and healthy. Everyone was happy and excited about Orison’s little sister.
There had been no movement since Thursday. Molly had read this was nothing unusual, but the doctor said she could come for a check-up if she wished. Saturday morning (September 22) they went to Hennepin County Medical Center. No heart beat. Ultrasound confirms: the baby is dead.
The phone call came to me first. It was Abraham through sobs, “We lost the baby.”
Noel and I arrived in a half hour. No explanation of the loss, not yet. After a couple hours they go home to get ready to induce later in the afternoon. At 1:30 PM they come to our home on the way to the hospital. Abraham’s brothers Karsten and Ben and their wives Shelly and Melissa are there. I read 2 Samuel 12:15-23, John 9:1-3, and 1 Corinthians 15:58 acknowledging that the word play on “labor” in verse 58 is not meant to be cute. We gathered around them and prayed. Ben drove them to the hospital. I went to church and dedicated 9 babies and preached from 1 Samuel 12:1-25, “The Sinful Origin of the Son of Man.” Then I went to the hospital to keep vigil.
At 11:54 PM, September 22, 2007, labor complete, Felicity Margaret Piper was born—lifeless. Abraham and Molly spent an hour or so with Felicity alone. Then the grandparents came in. (Molly’s parents, Bob and Darleen Dillemuth had flown in immediately from Erie, Pennsylvania.) Then Ben and Melissa and Karsten and Shelly and Millie and Talitha came in. All the adults held Felicity. I took lots of pictures and made a slide show to the music, “Be Thou My Vision.” It brings tears.
Abraham and Molly went home the next morning. The funeral is set for 11 AM Wednesday, September 26, 2007 at Bethlehem.
I have wept on Abraham’s shoulder with firm embraces. I have watched other men weep with him. I love the ready tears of strong men. I did not know Felicity. But I have known my son since he was Felicity’s age. When he is broken it affects me deeply. I cry when I see him and when I think about him. He loves being a father. He and Molly were both so excited about their girl. We are all numb with incomprehension. She was so ready and so healthy. The doctor who delivered her said the cord was tight around her neck and that was probably the cause.
Noel and I lay in bed at about 3 AM after coming home from the delivery thinking: This seems so preventable. By God and by man. Yes. So easy. But neither man nor God prevented this. Man, because he did not know it was happening. God, because he has his wise and loving reasons that we wait to learn with tears and trust.
Thank you for praying for us.
**On a Watson family note: please pray for us, especially Keith. The spiritual warfare and attacks are huge right now. We will only survive through prayer and constant guidance and strength from Our Provider, Our Sustainer, Our Comforter! We need your prayers!
Monday, September 24, 2007
born August 26, 2007
date of death: Sept. 20, 2007
As I stood watching as two friends grieved the loss of their baby, looking at that tiny casket covered by a beautiful white blanket with a pink monogramming of Kendall, I kept asking "why?"
And all I could tell them was "I love you" and "I am here for you". Ivey went with us and was able to hug and love on Chad's 12 yr. old daughter who stood and grieved the loss of her baby sister. I prayed for my husband who had the very difficult task of delivering the graveside, I wasn't sure if he was even going to be able to speak himself.
I think we share a special bond with this couple because they were in our church family in Eastman and we were able to minister to them when Kristi, underwent surgery for cervical cancer (similar to me) with the hopes that she would still be able to concieve a child in the future. We delighted with them when she became pregnant and prayed for them as she was on complete bedrest for months and then when she delivered at 6 months we prayed for Kendall.
So, I thought I would share his thoughts with you on such a difficult season in this couple's life.
Here is a copy of his blog from Saturday:
While we were in Raleigh for the Acts 29 Boot camp I received a dreaded call from a good friend. Kristie had recently (about a month ago) given birth to a daughter - Kendall. Kendall came at only 6months and weighed less than 2 pounds. We prayed for Kendall. Every time my phone would ring and I would see it was Chad calling, I would be momentarily gripped by fear - afraid that Kendall had taken a bad turn. That's what the Thursday night call was about. I awoke several times during the night and begged God on behalf of Chad and Kristie - I pleaded that little Kendall be strengthened and that she hold on - I prayed that she would live and grow. She didn't. Chad called Friday morning to let us know that during the night Kendall lost her fight. I don't know why - though I ask.Why would this family have to endure such a loss?Why would such a hard conception, carrying, and birth be followed by this?Why would YOU allow THIS?Nothing.I do not know why.Today I will do the grave side service for 2 good friends who have lost a precious and beautiful gift. The truth is I have no idea what to say - but this...The Gospel speaks to this day. The story of redemption includes this day - it includes Thursday night. THIS is not what we were created for. This is not what the garden originally looked like. This is the result of sin's curse, passed on from one generation to the next. I thank God that the Gospel of Jesus Christ has intervened and offers us hope - even in a day like today. I praise God that today is not the end for Kendall - or for Chad and Kristie. I praise Him, that in Christ, for all who believe today is only a sad and horrible pause in what will be forevermore. I do believe that Kendall is now enjoying fellowship with her heavenly Father - the fellowship that as believers Chad and Kristie will one day enjoy as well. I long, especially on days like today for that final day - the day when our redemption is ultimately consummated - and in it there will be no more suffering, no more pain, no more death - and we will live in the glory of our Savior. I pray for Chad and Kristie, even now, that the Gospel of Jesus Christ would speak to their heart - that they would not only know the hope of their future in Christ, but that they would know - fully, completely, experientially know that Jesus Christ is their rock, he is their strength, he is their comfort, their joy, their delight. I pray that they would know that he will never leave them and never forsake them. I pray that they would have the confidence in him today to know that he loves them and cares for them - even now.The Gospel has much to say today.
Saturday, September 22, 2007
Saturday, September 22, 2007
I loved being with Keith, hearing other pastors say the same things I have heard Keith say over the past year. For example: Chan Kilgore (lead pastor at Crosspointe church in Orlando Fl., http://www.xpointe.com/ ) said in his talk that he at one time was working in his cushy pastors job at a large church and one day realized that all of his time was spent inside the church building in meetings with christians and he had no time to spend outside with nonchristians
sharing the gospel, which was where his heart's desire was... I have heard my hubby say the same thing!
Keith finally was in a place this week where he felt he was not the square peg trying to fit into a round hole, a place where the pastors hearts desire was to preach the gospel, and live it everyday.
Everyone we met homeschooled their kids too!! I couldn't believe it. We had so much in common.
We heard from a great line-up of speakers: Chan Kilgore, Tyler Jones, daniel Montgomery, Mark Driscoll and Ed Stetzer. They were full of wisdom and insight, and encouragement. (see Keith's blog for more on that).
One thing that I loved was there push for strong marriages and families. Mark Driscoll pounded the importance of dating your wife and family day with your kids. Keith was encouraged to study at home and be more of a part of the kids schooling, have a time to share his sermon topic on Saturday with us and get feedback. Each pastor strongly encouraged the importance of:
#1 relationship with God,
#2 relationship with spouse,
# 3 relationship with kids,
Even in our interview on Friday, our 2 assessors asked us how we live this order out and gave us advice and encouragement to keep this order. One interesting idea was to have a date co-op where you swap out nights to go out with your spouse and another family watches the kids for each other so you don't have to pay a sitter (cause church planters don't have any money). When you go out split a meal or get coffee and dessert, just do something to be together. Great ideas and such encouragement to keep the marriage strong and your family strong!
I'm just so thankful to be in ministry with my hubby and know that I am to be a supporter and encourager to him. My first priority after God is to be there for him...to love and support him. So, I will fight to keep our home as a refuge, and our family unit strong, our marriage strong and healthy, because I am aware that Satan will prowl around us looking to devour at any chance he can get.
So, I encourage you to pray for your pastor and his family. They are "out there" in that place where they are a threat to satan and his destructive work and therefore in the midst of spiritual warfare if they are working for the Lord and for the spread of the gospel.
To my friends, I encourage you to love your husband, encourage him, stroke his ego!!, don't make him wait in line behind the kids, he deserves first, not last! I know I constantly have to ask the Lord to help me with keeping things in the right order and not just giving the left-overs to my hubby. Let's honor God in being the helpmate He intended us to be.
Monday, September 17, 2007
Here sits the family patiently waiting for the service to begin.........It was so much fun having the Dollars with us on this special day. It was an incredible experience, so many people excited about what God has put together.
The Word was truthfully and passionately fed to eager ears. I saw my husband doing what He loves to do...delivering the Word, laying out the gospel in an understandable message before a room full of people. He was where he longs to be, doing what He was created to do loving every minute of it! Thank you God for allowing us to be a part of Your work! Can't wait until our next service!! To God Be the Glory...
Saturday, September 8, 2007
J - joyful that my kids are at home with me (joyful almost all of the time)
A - always have LOVED Christmas Day!!
N- Neat freak!!
E - Excited about our first Sunday at New City - one week away!!!
So, there I did it! So, now I have to go put away laundry, because I can't leave the house with it still sitting out on the couch. Going to the Ray's home to eat and watch the GA game.
Sunday, September 2, 2007
On another great note of praise: while I was visiting at the hospital the Lord worked it out for another provision for New City!! Todd and Kelli's church wants to help us in the purchase of a TV/Dvd for our children's ministry.i was told this right before leaving the hospital and right after their pastor and family had left the room!! Praise the Lord for arranging that today!! God is so cool!!!!!!!!!
Monday, August 20, 2007
Yesterday, Keith was a little nervous about all of the unknowns and the first service quickly approaching. He just was a bit anxious. So, we talked about all of the things that needed to get done, the items that still need to be purchased and it was a rather long list. Then this morning we were talking about big things that we needed to order (divider curtains for the children area) and some other things. We discussed how much money was available to use and all of that. Well, he left for work with uncertainty about how we were going to pay for the big items and well...God already had that figured out and taken care of. Before lunch Keith knew that we had the $ to order these much needed dividers. He also has blessed us with someone who can help look over the technical stuff and help decide what else we will need for that area. AND, someone donated two large brewers for our coffee bar! - no way -
I mean God is taking care of each area, one step at a time, one day at a time and He is not one bit anxious about any of it. You Go God! You are AWESOME!! You are INCREDIBLE! After all You are the I AM!!!!
It also reminds me of when God called Moses, it was God who did all of the amazing things, He only required Moses to be obedient, it was the same when Abraham was called to offer Isaac as a sacrifice. He was required to obey and God did the rest, He provided the lamb.
Wow, what a day in this adventure. I wouldn't want to be anywhere else. I also thought it was pretty cool that when I was doing my bible study today that I read the verses in Genesis 22 and when I got to verse 14 it said The Lord Will Provide! I thought it was pretty neat that I read that today. Just a simple reminder for me.
So, I probably don't have to tell you that Keith came in on a cloud this afternoon all smiles. (See, I told you :) )
Saturday, August 18, 2007
Wednesday, August 15, 2007
When Papa comes to mind, I always see him smiling that big grin. I loved that! I miss that! i also really miss his huge hugs, the ones that said you are safe and loved. I have so many memories! Swimming at their house, cutting his grass, spending the nights and being scared to death by his snoring!!! I loved going to Shoneys with them, cooking breakfast with Grandmommy when I was small, working around the house with them. I loved their visits with us when we lived in B'ham...Papa loved our old house with the front porch. He loved being Mr fixit! ( the only one ever in our family who loved being mr fixit!!) he loved the odd jobs that required skills that he always could muster. He stayed busy, but he also loved to sit and visit. What a prayer warrior! We all knew that he and Grandmommy lifted their family up every morning. (she still does) I still love to visit with her and just be near her. I know her loss was so much more than ours...I know her grief is still fresh. you cannot live for more than 50 yrs, loving a person and ever get over that.
I'm just so thankful for all of the time together, sometimes doing nothing, but just sitting together. I wish he could have met Elijah and enjoyed him too. I think he would have his hands full with him and Seth. Papa would have been blown away at how much Seth is like his Daddy. HE would have been the one to teach Seth how to swim, not the Nazi swim coach. :)
It's funny the things that I remember and miss the most. I carry those with me like a special treasure that no one can steal or erase. His handprint on our lives is deep and never ending. His faith and love for the Lord, His zeal to share His Lord with others we strive to emmulate. He made an incredible mark on our lives, one that will go on. I often wish he was here to share the journey we are on. to see his excitement over this new church, to be a part of a new opportunity in sharing his love and passion for Jesus Christ. I fall so short in sharing my heart with you, words cannot express my memories, my grief, my longing to see Papa again...one more hug, one more grin! ...One day...:) Thank you Father for giving us Papa!
Monday, August 13, 2007
Sunday, August 5, 2007
Saturday, July 28, 2007
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
I have to say and would really like to shout it out at the top of my lungs....LEAVE MY HUSBAND AND HIS CHARACTER ALONE!!! I know of no other man who has more integrity, more honesty, more compassion, more love for His Lord than my husband! I really dislike it when negative untruths (lies) start to circulate, especially from those who should know better. I have to remind myself that the Lord will take care of those, and us.
But I will set the record straight so there will not be any question. Keith Watson has not, I repeat, HAS NOT asked or recruited anyone from Mabel White to come to New City Church, EXCEPT for Shannon Allgood, only because the Lord dropped him into the picture with such a certainty that no one could deny Shannon was to be a part of this band.Other than Shannon, we have not asked, told, suggested or begged any member of the church. Each person that has made a commitment, has done so on their own accord and by the Lord's prompting.
What is it about people getting mad at a man who has worked his tail off, poured his heart into his job, done everything he could to leave this job with things better than they were before, and do so with his character above reproach, always praying for the church to be healthy and go to a new place only because the LORD has called him out of comfort and into something new...requiring a HUGE step of faith! How can you get mad and spread lies about him?
So....I am calling all our prayer warriors to gird up and surround us with your prayers! The fiery darts are a flyin'!
WE WILL PRESS ON and strive to see the Gospel transform everything within our reach - ourselves, our church, our city, and our world. We understand that our church is more than a building, an organization, a man, or a service. We are a group of missionaries, a family of believers, a population of diverse individuals united by, striving for, and growing in the gospel of Jesus Christ. We are "a worshipping community of missional theologians."
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
Saturday, July 14, 2007
Friday, July 13, 2007
So, I finally took some photos of her lesson this week. It is really hard to catch the jump on a digital camera, but I guess these were pretty good. Anyway, she has a ball!
Monday, July 9, 2007
Page, you are returning to jazzercise, and I am going to start running again. I had quit while recovering from my surgery, then I lost one of my running partners, and then the other one is 9 months pregnant. Of course, she is still doing step class. She is really due in like a week and looks like she is carrying a little basketball. My hero! :)
She plans on training for a half marathon as soon as she gets the okay from her doctor after the baby comes. Wow! She said that will be a good goal to get back in shape. I am not sure that she is really out of shape though, just needs to deliver that tiny basketball!
Well, we have our first prayer time together with all those who are planning to be a part of New City Church tomorrow night at our home. We are looking forward to the time together and to see how God will continue to work in this .
More to come!!