I will have to say that God surely does have a creative way of getting my attention at times. The title of this book, for instance, being one. I have been told more often than not that I am a strong willed person (imagine that!) so when I came across this book I had to take a second, third, and maybe even a fourth look. I was more than curious as to what the author would have to say... so I read the back cover, decided that it sounded too much like me and walked away from it. But wouldn't you know it, two days later I got a flier in the mail for this very book. I ignored that to. But then my mother called and we were talking about my strong will, a subject that comes up often with her, and as soon as I got off the phone with her I spotted the flier for the book. I felt God gently said to me "So when are you going to get the hint?" I would like to say that I dutifully went out that day and bought the book...but I waited a couple more days, 4 if you must know, to get it. Hmmmm must be the strong will in me that "made" me resist doing what I knew I should do. Anyways, I finally got the book, but of course I put off reading it until last night. Did I mention that I bought the book 3 days ago? Well, I read the first chapter, and lets just say that I was offended. Really! It described me to a capital T! I almost put the book down and went to bed, but I decided to skim through the rest... Fast forward 2 1/2 hours later and I finally put the book down. The point of this book is learning how to use my strong willed personality to honor God and my husband with a little thing called submission. A biblical concept that I am not good at! The author Dr. Debbie Cherry writes that "We are all experts at making excuses for our behavior". And boy did she hit the proverbial nail on the head when she wrote that. I am good at making excuses for why I am the way I am, none of them are good mind you, but I am good at making them. But she also explains what submission is and is not. It is not surrendering my identity, being a quiet " I'll do whatever you tell me to do" wife, not ever expressing my opinion, or giving up my dreams, goals, or needs for my husbands. But submission is the process of putting off my selfish desires and putting on "one flesh" so that my husband and I can do the things that are necessary to reach the ultimate goal, having a God-honoring marriage. Now, if I can just remember the steps of, " How to Relinquish Control" from chapter 15...
God opened my eyes last night and I know that, with the help of my strong will, my husband, and God, I can make the changes to myself I need to make. I realized that I really do want to honor God and my husband, and I can do that without surrendering who I am. Now if I can just teach my daughters before they make the same mistakes!
Friday, August 17, 2007
I was pretty sure that I had prepared myself for every scenario, but I know now that I was definitely kidding myself. The first day we had a major meltdown. The second day we only had a minor meltdown (this one mine). And, thankfully, by the third day things got a little easier. We are still trying to find a comfortable routine that works for us, but I have faith that by the end of our first month we will have settled into one. This being the first week, I also realized that I was a little rusty on some things... but I am happily relearning everything that he needs to learn. Zachary is a very smart "little" guy, and I am enjoying watching him get excited about learning something new. He really loves history and science, they are his favorite subjects, and I am enjoying putting together fun ways for him to learn about both subjects. I can't express enough what a privilege, and how much fun, it is for me to be able to help shape my sons future in a more hands on, active way. We have a long ways to go if we are both going to make it through 4th grade, so I ask for your continued prayers and encouragement on our behalf. And if you happen to have some ideas about how to teach in fun ways please pass them my way. I am willing to lean too!
Posted by OUR FAMILY... at 1:08 PM
Saturday, August 4, 2007
Camp Barnabas was probably the most memorable experience I've ever had. Although I attended last year as a "Barnstormer", this year being a C.I.A. impacted me much differently, and at a deeper level. This year I got to work one on one with the camper specifically assigned to me for the week. And I have to admit that at first, I was dreading it. I honestly didn't feel up to the challenge of surrendering every moment of my week catering to the specific needs of someone that I didn't know, with a disability I wasn't sure how to handle. This being the first year I would have individual contact with the campers, I was unsure what to expect and a little scared. The next day I met my camper, Heather. She is 17, non-verbal, and mildly autistic. Most of my worries went away when I figured out she could understand me, she just communicated back with fewer words and gestures (her favorite two were "I love you" and "loser"). She could also do most everything herself, with verbal encouragement. But as the week went on I got to know Heather better, and I came to realize that she was more than just the basic list of disabilities that they give you at the beginning of the week. She was very smart, had a lively personality, a great sense of humor, and interests very similar to my own. She made everyone laugh, and she always had a smile on her face. I had so much fun spending time with her and the being her best friend for the week, that I often forgot she (or any of the other girls in my cabin) were there because of a disability. They all laughed and payed and complained like everyone else. I realized near the end of the week that I had come to Barnabas with certain expectations and ideas that were all drastically changed by the time I left. I realized that these campers were no different than you and me, and they are people with personalities, interests, feeling, and opinions. Their disabilities were only a small fraction of the amazing people God made them to be. More often than not, their disabilities could be considered a blessing. Camp Barnabas helped me realize that God doesn't care if you are paralyzed, blind, deaf, autistic, have Down's Syndrome, or are "normal" by the worlds standards; He has a plan and a purpose for you that nothing can hinder. It also made me think if complete submission and self-sacrifice to Heather could be so fulfilling and rewarding, what would it feel like to do that in our walk with the One who created her. -Victoria Deecke
Posted by OUR FAMILY... at 8:19 PM
Welcome to our new blog! Since most of our family (well actually, all of our family and a lot of our friends live out-of-state we thought this would be a great way to share what was going on with the kids, Ted and I. We hope to keep you up-to-date with family adventures, sagas, comings and goings, and photos. I can't promise weekly updates but I promise to at least up date you all monthly.
To start I'll share what has been happening this summer...
Ted, the kids (minus Amanda), and I spent a week at Palmetto Bible Camp in June. Everyone had a great time, especially Zach since this was his first year as a camper. Then we all spent an adventurous time in Chicago, and by adventurous I mean not-planned-mishaps everyday, but in the end fun was had by all. Kevin and Tori then went to camp Barnabas (a camp for special needs children)Iin July, where Kevin spent his week as a "barnstormer" and Tori was pared with a special needs camper. I will post a copy of her article for our Church bulletin as soon as I figure out how to... They both came back blessed by their time there. During that time Zach and I had some great one-on-one time while Ted was off on another whirlwind job throughout Ohio visiting 4 of their offices. If you all are wandering what has happened to Amanda, no, we have not forgotten her. She moved out into her first apartment with 2 of her friends and is finally experiencing the "Real World". We see her about once a week when she gets a craving for a home-cooked meal, other than frozen pizza and ramen noodles. She seems to be adjusting well, but between work and her now loaded school schedule we won't see much of her.
This next week Tori (who is now in 11th grade!) and Kevin (who will begin his freshman year, I can't believe he is this old now!) will start school, which they are so "happy" about, while Zach gets to have one more week of vacation before I start homeschooling him. I know that this is the right decision for us and I am looking forward to being able to play a more important role in his education both intellectually and spiritually, but I also am nervous about my decision because it is my son's future that I am taking into my hands. I would appreciate your prayers for he and I. I have no delusions that this will be easy but I have a peace about this and know that we will do just fine, with support of family and friends and God's guidance.
I pray that eveyone is doing well and that we will be able to see everyone soon. We love you all!
Posted by OUR FAMILY... at 5:38 PM