Saturday, December 16, 2006

Well, this has been an interesting week for us. We finished up our schooling for the most part and are very much looking forward to Christmas break. The girls have a couple of tests to take on Monday/Tuesday but for the most part we are done. I am praying for and anticipating a better start after the first of the year. On Monday, Jonathan had his drum lesson. He continues to do very well and works hard to improve his skills and learn new things that Mr. Brian teaches him. On Tuesday, Jonathan had a follow up visit with the eye doctor. The doctor had just returned from a low vision conference which he attended with Jonathan in mind. He received a lot of information about new technology that is available for people with low vision issues. He seemed very excited about the available possibilities for Jonathan. He did not have time to process all the information and check it all out before our appointment, so he is in the process of doing that now and is suppose to get back with me in a couple of weeks with his recommendations. Right now Jonathan just uses a store bought magnifier to help him read. The doctor said he needs a particular magnification based on his vision and the corrective glasses that he is wearing. He is supposed to be figuring out what that is so that we will know what kind of magnifier he needs. Of course, all this wonderful new technology means that it costs quite a bit. But God made Jonathan’s eyes and He knows his needs better than any of us do, so I have no choice but to trust Him to heal Jonathan’s eyes or to provide the means for us to obtain whatever he needs. On Wednesday, we went to visit Santa in the afternoon. I told you last time that Jonathan and I had been talking about the gift he would wish for that money could not buy. That gift for him would be his healing. In talking about that, I told him that I didn’t think that Santa would be the one who would bring him that, but I also didn’t think that God would mind him telling Santa that this was his wish. Well, as we were approaching Santa, Jonathan asked me if he should tell Santa what we talked about and I told him yes if he wanted to. He had not said anything to his sisters or anyone else about this, so they had no idea what he was going to tell Santa. So after visiting with Santa and taking their pictures with him, I asked Jonathan what he said. He told Santa that he wanted some high top tennis shoes (which is a top item on his Christmas list) but most of all he wanted to be healed. Jonathan said he just looked at him, sat back and said, “Okay.” I’m not sure Santa knew what to say. Jonathan is not bashful when sharing with others about his needs and desires regarding his situation. Nor is he hesitant to share his faith and belief in the only One who can meet those needs and fulfill those desires. This precious boy blesses me, speaks to me, challenges me, and helps me with his love and trust in the Lord. That evening, Jonathan finished up Awanas by completing the third chapter in his book. He worked very hard and was able to pass the 8 sections of this chapter in about 3 weeks; that included about 6 individual verses, the 10 Commandments and saying all the books of the Bible in under 2 minutes. He is doing such a great job. On Thursday, he had his second basketball practice. This is no play time for Jonathan. Coach Ben works him hard. He expects the same hard work and effort from Jonathan as he does from the rest of the team. The boys are very encouraging to Jonathan and they have picked up right where they left off last year. Uncle Timmy and Aunt Keby came to watch some of his practice and that just urges Jonathan to work even harder when there are others there watching him. We spent the day today helping to decorate Grandpa Cooper’s house for Christmas while he is away in Israel. He and Uncle Chris will be returning this coming Wednesday so we are working to get everything finished before they get home. Tomorrow will be a busy day for us at church. If you are at home around 6 pm tomorrow evening you can hear the Sanctuary Choir and Orchestra present “Gloria, the Wonder of Christmas” on KCBI 90.9 fm. We will be presenting it at 3 pm as well but I’m not sure if it will be aired on the radio then or not. This will be my first concert with the choir since returning to First Baptist and I can hardly wait.
I hope you will be in prayer for us on Monday afternoon as Jonathan goes to see the gait specialist at Cooks. I’m not sure what to expect. I just know that it is like a clinic where all the therapists get together and evaluate him at one time. Please pray for wisdom for them and that they will be able to offer the specific help that Jonathan needs to help him improve his walking. Please pray that Jonathan will not be nervous. He seems excited about going because he is expecting them to help him with his walking. He seems ready to do whatever is necessary to improve his walking. Please pray for me that I will have wisdom and discernment as I consider their suggestions and the options available for him. Please continue to pray for his diet and exercise. His blood sugars were better this week so his body must have adjusted to not taking the glucaphauge. Also pray for me as I try to spend some time over the Christmas break researching and seeking the direction that God has for us to take regarding his diabetes. Pray that God will lead me very specifically to the right people/person that we need to help us with his diabetes and his weight loss.
I said at the beginning that this has been an interesting week for us. While things have gone well and have been positive on one hand, we have found ourselves in the midst of another crisis of belief in our family. This time last year we found ourselves praying for God’s financial provision for our family. We watched as He faithfully provided all that we needed to meet our financial commitments for the year. It has been another wonderful stone of remembrance for me throughout this year as I have reflected on God’s faithfulness to us in that particular situation. This year we are back in the same situation, although at a much more sever degree that we have ever been in our family. Worry has been close at hand as I have been praying and crying out to God for His provision and deliverance for us again. I am almost finished with my Believing God Bible Study and this week, God has spoken to me on several occasions regarding this very issue. I don’t know why I’m always so amazed when God does that. I know I have shared these verses with you before; I even have Jonathan’s name written out beside them in my Bible. But this time they spoke to me about this particular situation in our family. I want to share them with you.

2 Corinthians 1:9-11- Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. 10 He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us, 11 as you help us by your prayers. Then many will give thanks on our behalf for the gracious favor granted us in answer to the prayers of many.

We have felt this “sentence of death” in our family a number of times over these last couple of years. Death has come to mean many different things to me. Right now, our sentence of death is our desperate financial situation. But the verse says that “this happened so that we would not rely on ourselves but on God who raises the dead.” I can’t tell you the number of times I have prayed for God’s provision this week while at the very same time there were thoughts running through my mind of how I can handle this if God happens to not come through. Am I a dork or what? I’ve been there, I’ve done that and God drastically showed me who was in control 2 years ago when Jonathan became ill. We can’t do this on our own; it is God who raises the dead. Verse 10 says that it is God who has delivered us in the past and he will continue to deliver us, therefore our hope is set on Him. And not just that, but we are being helped because there are so many of you praying for us and yet again we will all give thanks for the gracious favor that He will grant us in answer to our prayers. Because of your prayers, you share a significant part of the miracles that God performs in our lives. I have quoted this Scripture over and over again and it gives me courage and strength to stand in faith and Believe God yet again for what we need. You may be at a crisis of belief in your life with a sentence of death in your heart. Take heart – it is God who raises the dead! Set your hope on Him. May God give you a blessed week.

John 15:7-9 7 "If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it shall be done for you. 8 "By this is My Father glorified, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples. 9 "Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love.

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