275 – Jesus Died, I Must Die

275 – Jesus Died, I Must Die

August 26 and 27 1987

Gramma Fern must have sent us a good amount of money. How to spend it was the topic of several of Dan’s and my conversations in my journals and many days of seeking the Lord’s will. We went back to seriously thinking about Christian school for Timmy—at least I did.

This confuses me, Lord, and I need to hear from You. It feels we are getting ‘tossed about’ over this!

Lord, You know the whole issue, but now Dan feels very strongly that Timmy should go to public school. I sort of stormed out of the house and headed out to the country roads. I took an hour and a half brisk walk and confessed all my pride and rebellion, pouring out my heart’s confusion and sadness.

All I could say at the end of praying and praising and seeking You was, “Lord, carry me through this.” I definitely cannot cope.

I was wanting someone to pray with about submission who could be neutral and non-judgmental and give me wisdom. Donna brought a friend she had not seen in years to our Bible study after she ran into her at her son’s soccer game. I almost opened it up, but I didn’t want a big discussion with everyone’s advice and people hearing our problems without Dan there. But this Diane had moved her kids from the Christian School to the public school! I felt in my spirit that she would have encouragement and wisdom to share.

Matthew 27:43 …He trusts in God, let Him deliver Him now if He takes pleasure in Him…

People were saying of Jesus–HA! Let God deliver this man from the cross! I feel this is happening to me—I cannot come down from the cross. There are mockings and insults all around me. I feel I let my children down because they did not do well on the SAT test. I feel foolish and misunderstood by the neighbors AND the homeschoolers.

Then it occurred to me by the Spirit that Jesus did get off the cross. And so will I.

He got off when He died!I will get off —–when I die to this!

When I can really totally say, “Thy will be done.”

And when I do not get emotionally involved in what ANYONE thinks, but only in what YOU think, Lord.

273 – Interrogation

273 – Interrogation 

August 19, 1987

Bema was an 80 year old woman who lived in a cute green house with yellow-trimmed shutters directly across the street from us. She was Leslie’s and Julie’s mother, and the boys’ friend Chris’s grandmother. The daughters would gather daily to visit with their mom on the small patio. Bema and I really liked each other and oftentimes she would venture an opinion.

Yesterday Bema brought us home from Bingo at the rest home and voiced her concerns about homeschooling. She had decided that third grade was getting over my head when I‘d only taught first grade. What about preparation time and having the kids underfoot all day, every day?

I told her that I’d taught first, second, and third grades, and said just the right things, thank the Lord. I was surprised and caught off guard, but did not get defensive.

Just then Markie fell in the street while crossing it to get to our house. Praise God. I was forced, I should say– I HAD THE OPPORTUNITY, to leave the uncomfortable situation quickly.

Later in the evening Leslie came over with more questions about homeschooling. She had been sitting with Bema and Julie on Bema’s patio, probably chitchatting about us! I felt quizzed and uncomfortable. They were prying and I was trying to act like a Christian. This small town living is having its challenges.

Their concern was the prevailing attitude of the 80’s: how can a mom be smart enough and together enough to teach her kids at home, especially when there’s a bunch of them and they are all ages. AND how audacious are you to keep your children at home when they need the socializing that school offers.

All I knew was that the Lord had led me very clearly, Dan had agreed (reluctantly at first, but then wholeheartedly) and God had given me the verse: And when he brings out his own sheep,  he goes before them; and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice.  John 10:5

We did not want the boys to follow just any voice.

I had felt assurance that Jesus was with us in this endeavor.

251 – Musings of a Mother

251 – Musings of a Mother

January 6, 1986

I’m sitting in bed, jammied, creamed, teeth glistening and minty, in Momma’s pink robe, listening to the faint strains of Josie’s worship tape from her rooms below me. I look up and hundreds of pink and white fist-sized roses are cascading down from ‘rose heaven’ on the yellow wallpapered walls all around me. I love roses. I adore roses. Thank You, Father.

I love old things—like this house, 2-story, oak-framed windows and oak doors downstairs, old oak furniture left from original owners, lace curtains in the living room, beveled glass windows and a large bay window where the boys can sit and read. Praise You Father.

And the grass outside on these three beautiful acres is always green even under 13 inches of 4 day old snow. The wind is howling outside, but the house stands solidly around, under, and over me. Bless God. Bless My God.

The mudroom is a precious bonus and much used for muddy, or swimming-pool wet, or snowy-wet or rainy-wet boys.

Our sons–healthy, tired from the hours of this day filled with school work, play, sledding and sliding on icy hills on bottoms—are sound asleep in two bunk beds, warm, jammied in new blue GGDup Christmas jammies—with layers of covers, clean faces, prayed over, kissed, very much loved, daily forgiven. Thank You, Father. Praise my God.

Dear dear Dan, my wonderful God-given man, is at a week-of-prayer meeting hearing from You, worshiping You, being moved, changed, healed by You. Praise You for this once-in-a-lifetime, life-changing opportunity You have given us to grow and be ‘formed for service.’

Who knows what tomorrow brings, what next week or this summer brings? May I please be given, and receive JOYFULLY, the grace to praise You in and for all of the circumstances of my life. Especially, the closeness of my husband and children. May the law of kindness be on my lips; may I truly be the joyful mother of my children.

For Your glory, for my rest.

He makes the barren woman abide in the house as a joyful mother of children. Praise the Lord! Psalm 113:9

The law of kindness is on her tongue. Psalm 31:26

199- Asking God for Help

199 – Asking God for Help

July 15, 1986

Exodus 16:4 The Lord said to Moses, Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you; and the people shall go out and gather a day’s portion every day, that I may test them, whether or not they will walk in my instruction.

I was encouraged in reading about God providing for the Israelites…so I asked God for an invitation out to dinner because I needed one more meal in the week’s menu.

Janet came by unexpectedly with a bag of groceries that will carry us through this week and into next, saying, “the Lord told me– as I was walking through the store asking Him who could use this, and this, and this—that YOU could!”  Janet has been such a faithful friend to us!

July 16

Exodus 17:1-7  [The story of water coming from the rock—after Moses took the people’s complaints to God.]

This story led me to something in my life: the three younger boys would be satisfied to play here at home, I think. But Tim is restless and wants friends his age and more things to do.

So – I bring this complaint to You, Lord.

I have no ideas, no car, no money, no friends to call on. How can I help my son?

And I rebuke fear.

Exodus 17:8-16 [The story Moses interceding for the people during the battle with the Amalekites.]

I will intercede on Tim’s behalf. I will pray about this. 

Many times, just like this, the Bible is my guide. I write down a verse or many verses while I am reading. Often God ‘speaks’ to me and answers my questions and gives me advice. It’s pretty amazing… It’s a relationship that is built day by day.

Little did I know that within a few weeks, Tim would be a first grade student at the elementary school across the field. It wasn’t my choice, but it answered my prayers. Did the Lord lead me to intercede for Timmy so that I would be a bit more prepared for what was going to be happening. I wouldn’t be surprised.

190 – Getting, Giving, and Forgiving

 190 – Getting, Giving, and Forgiving

May 28, 1986

One more week before we leave for New York.

Dan now has 3 moving crates for our all of our worldly goods, which will be loaded on the high school teacher’s flat bed and transported to Livonia, NY. Dan is pleased with them and with the price. One cost $5 and the other two cost $20 each.

Dan took several of our plants to Hydraulic Depot, our friend Jim’s business. Today when I called, the girl who is always such a crabby person on the phone was friendly! Dan said she was overjoyed when he brought the plants. We learned a lesson in softening people’s hearts—bless them!!

Our house on LaRue was snuggled in between 3 apartment buildings. Many of our neighbors worked at the casinos downtown, a few blocks away, and slept during the day. It was a challenge to get the boys and their friends to play quietly outside as they raced around our house, running or on their big wheels.

I apologized to the man with the orange truck who lives next door to us.  I felt the time was right as I saw him sitting on his front step reading. First I went to Dan and he prayed for me.

“Excuse me, but we’re moving and I want to be sure to apologize before we go, for the episode the other day. I know the kids get noisy and I was defensive because I work so hard at having them be quiet.” He replied,  “Well, kids ARE noisy and Mom’s ought to be defensive toward their kids.”

He was gracious and forgiving and grateful for the apology.

I was repentant and humble and sincere.

And I was relieved that he had not argued with me and sorry we had not made friends sooner.

186- Bible Principles

186- Bible Principles

April 17, 1986

Genesis 12:1-2 Now the Lord said to Abram, “Go forth from your country, and from your relatives, and from your father’s house, to the land which I shall show you…and I will bless you…and so you shall be a blessing.

Holy Spirit, precious Comforter and Encourager and Teacher, You are going to have to help me believe that these verses are truly for us. I am so easily shaken. But I saw You build me up in my most holy faith on Sunday through taking me aside to read Smith Wigglesworth and on Monday through praying with Karen and Jackie. I beseech You today to greatly increase my faith and help me to be assured that this is our call and then give me the grace to accept Your details, Your pressures, Your timing. I praise You. I want no idols before me, but I so want You and Your will.

Genesis 14:17 God sent Melchizekek to bless Abram.

God send Your man to bless Dan. Bless him. Anoint him with oil. Prophecy over him. Move, I humbly ask, by Your precious Spirit, on Dan at the prayer meeting right now. His feet are in the Jordan but he does not SEE that the waters are parted for us. Please move through Your servants at that meeting. I ask that the wonderful hand of our God would verify to Dan and the group that the waters are parted, that we are on schedule. Give forth direction, Lord. I pray in Jesus’ name.

(it didn’t happen this day this way, but it did happen!)

185- When to Go?

185-When to Go?

April 14, 1986

Genesis 7:4 For after seven more days I will cause it to rain…

God tells His people what He will do…

Genesis 8:15 Then God spoke to Noah, saying, Go out of the ark…

God can make it clear when to go out—we listen and keep moving toward our destination.

April 15

Karen  and I prayed on the phone last night. Both of us were greatly encouraged in our spirits by God. She felt a major breakthrough regarding fear.

I was encouraged to focus on thankfulness of what God HAS DONE, not focus on the problem of how He still needs to provide. This is a great blessing to me. I know I must be quenching the Holy Spirit through my undisciplined negativism. In Jesus’ Name I ask POWER to change! His Spirit to change me!

We were greatly encouraged by these Bible verses about our pilgrimage to relocate to New York, our efforts to be built up in the Spirit, our goal to do God’s work in saving the lost.

Matthew18-21 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.

172- Back on Track for Bible School – Part 2

172- Back on Track for Bible School – Part 2

December 2, 1985

The next 3 guideposts in Mahoney’s pamphlet were:

5- CIRCUMSTANTIAL EVIDENCE – we had dialogue with Elim housing personnel and they had a house for us; the office manager put Dan’s application forward to the committee even though he had not received Dan’s Bodenseehof Bible School transcripts and we were accepted by the board to become students. Also, our pastor believed in us, and our church was missions minded.

6- THE PEACE OF GOD – I had peace and readiness to cross the country with all of our worldly goods in my 8th month of pregnancy with our sons ages 4, 3, and 2.

7- PROVISION – We were slim on provision, but felt our church would step up to help us get to New York, and Dan could get a job once we were there.

I felt we had 5 and 7 but Dan never felt THE PEACE OF GOD again after the counsel of his elder friends who strongly advised him to stay.

After waiting and praying for weeks, last night I FINALLY felt right about asking Dan what he thought of Mahoney’s pamphlet. I related my thoughts and reminded him that Mahoney says: if anything comes BEFORE inward conviction, confusion results.

Dan was completely receptive to all of this! It was if the blinders came off his eyes. He related that he had just been thinking today about how much he wants to serve God. He has been doing a lot of studying about missions for his four Sunday talks about missions on Sunday nights at church. Also, Sunday morning, the building inspector CAME TO CHURCH!!! He had given the church a HARD time during inspections so we had him on the church prayer chain. Toward the end of the building project he softened a little after Dan invited him to the Dedication and he came! TODAY AFTER SERVICE HE TOLD DAN HE FELT DRUNK! Dan told him he was drunk with the Holy Spirit. He said he will definitely be back. Dan was SO encouraged by this. This is the most important business on earth, bringing others to Jesus Christ. Also, we had found out that this man has a horrible reputation around town. God touched him.

back to 5- CIRCUMSTANTIAL EVIDENCE – I felt that when the church took a collection a few months ago and GAVE us the Suburban that Dan had had his eyes on for months that it was circumstantial evidence. The car was a thank you gift to Dan for building the church and for me for letting him! The vehicle is the kind we wanted to make the drive to NY.

back to 6- THE PEACE OF GOD – Today after church we prayed together on our knees and surrendered ourselves once again to God’s will for us. We asked Him to put this together.

We are waiting, trusting, praying…

171- Back on Track for Bible School – Part 1

171- Back on Track for Bible School – part 1

December 2, 1985

GOD HAS INTERVENED…GOD HAS MOVED…THE MIRACULOUS HAS HAPPENED!

We are back on the track to attend Elim Bible Institute in upstate New York.

Yesterday at church, Pastor Dave spoke very effectively on ILLUSIONS. That very often our reality is NOT God’s reality. We need to face our illusions and let God change them and us. We try to put our facts and our understanding of God into a box or a ritual. But God is greater than our understanding. We want Him to do things OUR way so we’ll be secure.

But we must risk stepping out by faith, and let Him be God in our lives, in our church.

The prayer afterward was a surrender, a releasing of personal fears, and an agreement with God to letting Him make our reality jive with His. We want HIM to move HIS way.

I prayed also, silently, that God would speak to Dan about Elim.

A month ago I sent for this pamphlet by Ralph Mahoney, “God’s Guidance.”

It enumerates 7 aspects of knowing God’s leading and as I look back…

The first one has been haunting me for a year-and-a-half.

1- INWARD CONVICTION: Dan received a CLEAR yearning, a call, to go to SCHOOL. It happened on our anniversary while we watched “Peace Child,” July 21, 1982. It was Don Richardson’s story.

2- GUIDANCE SIGNS: Dan showed me scripture later supporting God’s calling. We felt that our united hearts was a guidance sign also.

3- PROPHETIC UTTERANCE: That was the day when we were both depressed, and I felt I could not endure Dan’s heaviness any longer and felt so compassionate about his frustrations. I prayed (see blog #116 ). Totally out of the blue, spontaneous and unusual, my best friend’s husband came to the house with a clear word for Dan and I– that we were to pursue the schooling we desired in the far north and to do it soon.

4- GODLY COUNSEL – [this is what tangled us up almost 2 years ago]. Two elders from our church stepped in. Dan was becoming overwhelmed at the prospects of taking our young family (our sons ages 2,4,5 and one ‘on the way’) across the country to NY. Also, over the phone, a man from Elim advised us to wait because God had him wait. Yet two friends were strongly encouraging us to GO.           …to be continued…

163- God is Greater Than Me

163-God is Greater Than Me

November 8, 1985

The house began to be messy yesterday and continued today, seeming hopeless.

I started fretting, then looked up and read Timmy’s Sunday School mobile which hangs over my head in the schoolroom.

How to be Happy: Noah obeyed God

                                        Noah trusted God

                                        Noah thanked God

 

So listen, obey, then flow, trust, believe, praise—and leave the results to God.

Interesting, it says nothing about keeping clutter in your house organized and that will bring happiness.

From the boys’ book: The Braggy King of Babylon, about King Nebuchadnezzar:

“You must learn that your God is much greater than you.” (You will be like a beast till the day that you do.)

I felt convicted of not putting God up high enough. Sometimes I feel like a beast! He must be the one I worship and give my attention to.

November 9

I prayed on the phone with my friend Joyce and she had some words of encouragement for me –

*that I needed to be open to hear afresh from the Lord

*that I need to pray about breaking my own strongholds in my mind

*that there will be newness and freshness and variety coming (not monotony)

*she exhorted me to put on the helmet of salvation, to protect my mind

*she asked if I prayed in the Spirit during the day

This goes along with keeping my eyes on Jesus and exalting Him always. These are some specific things that I can do.