Wednesday, August 1, 2007

One Year Ago Today

I was looking back over my life this last year. We've come a long way baby...

August - November 2006

Paul has been out of work for 3 months now.

No money left in savings, no money left in checking.

Trying to live off of my part-time paycheck from the church. We cut out every "extra" in our lives. We eat lots of rice and beans.

Paul and I, a 5 year old daughter and an infant old son living in a small 2 bedroom apartment.

I go and sign-up for WIC to get food to feed my family.

We have to ask Paul's parents for help to pay the bills.

My mom comes to visit and loads us up with groceries and household supplies and diapers to last us a really long time.

Alanna is starting Kindergarten and we can't buy her new school clothes. My mom sends some outfits. We were able to buy her a pair of shoes to start the year. Vanessa gives her a free haircut because we can't afford to get her hair cut the start the new school year.

Everyone gives us baby clothes for Luke - thank God, we can't afford to buy clothes for a growing baby.

I learn how to make baby food - I can't afford to buy baby food.

We choose to tithe even without knowing how we will pay the bills, feed our kids or keep a roof over our heads.

Calls from friends and family of support and love at the times we needed it more than anything eles.

A million tears, a million questions, a million prayers.

August 2007
I woke up this morning in my new built 4 bedroom, 3 bathroom, 1633 sq. foot home. I look around my room. All new furniture. I turn on my TV with cable watch CNN, go to my master bath to get ready, pick clothes out from my walk-in closet. Go downstairs - all new furniture here too. (p.s. all bought with cash - not financed with credit cards)

Alanna is ready to start 1st grade at her new school - she has to wear a uniform. I just got her 6 uniforms to start the year. We're going shoe shopping on Saturday.

Luke is 1 and has more clothes and toys then he knows what do with. Most are hand-me-downs and I am so thankful for the blessing of friends and family with older boys. They keep my boy looking really cool.

Paul is a school he loves. He is making a difference in kids lives that have little or no hope.

His position was suppose to end for the summer on June 30, then mid July, then August 3rd. It's August 1st and his principle asked if he could keep teaching.

We choose to tithe knowing we can pay the bills, feed our kids and keep a roof over our heads.

A million thanks and praises to a wonderful God who walked us through a time of heart ache, questions and tears. All to prepare our hearts and bring us to a place of maturity for the blessings He had in store.

As I was writing this I was crying, remembering the pain and heart ache of that season of our lives. I know that at times a felt so alone and abandoned by God - but looking back I see how our every need was provided for. Our children did not go without. I never had to put my children to bed hungry, we never spent a night on the street, we always had enough. I learned so much about what really mattered. I learned to look for God's blessing in the everyday of life - not just the once in a lifetime.