I am so irregular at blogging, guess we know it will never become a full time career. But, alas, after 7 (yes I said 7) very blessed years of having my husband home it is indeed our turn for a real deployment. By real I mean, pack up the belongings you are going to a war zone for a year deployment. For those that read me before, we don't really consider Haiti a deployment, more of a TDY. But anyways, 7 years, almost to the day (I think as we don't have our papers in hand yet) my Beloved will be headed to Afghanistan to work providing religious support to the soldiers stationed there (and any other duties he decides to pick up) This time I won't be counting days on the blog we know it's set for 365 with a 14 day break somewhere in there. Instead I plan to focus on counting my God sightings.
You see, I went to the PWOCI conference recently and kept leaking. By leaking, I mean that I kept tearing up and I didn'thave any idea why. So, finally I just said "God, what's up? Why do I keep leaking." and He said "Fear, you're holding it in and pretending it's not there. Turn it over to me." So boy howdy, the flood gates opened and I let out all that fear and the tears that went with it. "But," God said, "this isn't a one time thing. You're going to have to do this every day!" Now this is where some coolness comes in I got to spend several hours on Saturday with Sarah Horn, author of God Strong-the military wife's spiritual survival guide. See, with a deployment coming up, you take all the deployment classes and avoid the one's that say things like "ministering to PTSD families" (which is one of the fears I'm daily turning over". See this book was born from her own journey of deployment, and I needed exactly this encouragement. Because during our first deployment I was so didn't know an ACU from an ACS. So, I'd packed up and moved home to be close to my family and church. But, now see I'm a veteran army wife. I've been around a bit and learned some acronyms and even PCS'd a few times once was even DITY. So, after Haiti, I was feeling pretty Army Strong, I've got the skills to handle a deployment now, God can take a rest (or so I was thinkng!)
Another wonderful teaching from the weekend was from Priscilla Shirer. She taught from Genesis 28:16 and Jacob's journey from his home to another town to find a wife after betraying his brother. It was a hard, desolate journey and he stopped at a certain place, and taking a rock as a pillow, slept halfway between here and there. And where for the first time he encountered God for himself. The faith of his father's truely became his faith.
She taught that "there is good stuff in the hard stuff". Well, I know there are lots of hard things, but for this family we are walking squarely into some hard stuff. I can't say that I'm excited about this like I have been about some hard stuff of my past. But, I'm determined not to leave any good stuff behind. So if you don't mind today and in the future (if you keep reading I guess you don't) I'm going to share the good stuff in the hard stuff. Mainly, so that I'll have the record. My altars will be built that I may return to see what the Lord has done and if by chance this encourages you or helps you to know God a little better then that's an added bonus.
Today's hard stuff, watching my husband pull out his stuff, the little things that mean something to him and make him happy. The stuff that he wants in "his space", certain books and tchotchkes that are uniquely him, and loading it all into black plastic boxes. Seing my kids pick legos and build him houses to take so that he'll have a part of them with him. My five year old building lego people to represent each of us. My ten year old saying "I'm going to hate not having a dad for a year." Then, the bickering. I wish I could say it was just the kids today, but I was short tempered and on edge too. See it's so much different when it goes from playing out in your head to living it in reality. And those black boxes in my living room are real. But, you know what so is MY GOD!
Here is how He's shown himself to me recently-facebook. Yeah, I said it, facebook. Yesterday I posted a need for a used digital camera, He answered the request in half an hour through a highschool friend I hadn't seen since graduation until we "met" again on facebook. Then today another sweet friend, who has borne a decade+ long cross with faith, grace and dignity posted, on facebook, lyrics to songs all day that just encouraged me and lifted me up. Songs of God's faithfulness in our weakness. So, while I still was on edge, was able to listen when God first prompted me this morning that K's short temper with her brothers was not hormones but the pain and reality of watching her daddy pack. See she was only 4 when he went the first time and this whole war thing was new, she and her 2 younger brothers had no concept of time or war. But, now I have 4 and two of them were born into a time of war. They do not yet know what it means to live in a country that isn't at war, and for practical purposes, neither do the older two.
See, now they know that sometimes daddy's don't come home and sometimes daddy's come home missing parts of their body, mind, or soul. So they will have to learn for themselves, that while we don't know what God has in store for us, He will help us find the treasures buried in the stones, if we let Him. So as my sweet sister reminded me in her post on facebook on a past day. When things are bad, and we're not wanting to go to the hard place, once again we turn to Jesus and pray as he did. "Not my will, but thy will be done." So, dear friends, it's hard for me to say this, but don't pray for us to not have to endure the hard place, but pray that I and each of my children will find the treasures buried for us there and make the rocks our pillows and that at the end of the journey when we return to being a physically united family that we will reap a great harvest from the seeds that are planted now.
Blessings to you.