Monday, January 21, 2013

I Can't Stop Smiling!

You know that you had a great weekend when you used the phrase, "I can't stop smiling!" several times.  I love my family.  No, I LOVE my family.  I love that God blessed me with Drew.  He really is way more than I could have even dreamed of for a husband.  But then God wasn't finished.  He, in his timing, decided to give me so much more than I had even expected or dreamed and blessed us with two amazing little children.  I hope that doesn't sound boastful.  I really am not trying to boast, I am just SO thankful.  But, I also completely understand that apart from God, even with these amazing gifts, I would not have joy.  I know it is the relationship that I have with my Heavenly Father, which grows stronger daily, that gives me pure joy.  I am so weak, but He is strong. 

I know that my joy comes from the Lord.  You see, I am a young woman and mother who has been diagnosed with (but praying I will soon be saying "healed from") an advanced cancer.  I feel like if I were fighting this cancer battle solo (without a close relationship with my Heavenly Father), I would be joyless.  Where would my hope be?  Remember Job from the bible? He was a righteous, wealthy man (maybe the richest man on earth at the time), who was stripped of everything (his wealth, his sons and daughters, his sheep, his oxen, his camels and his servants).  He lost everything except his faith in God.  In fact, Job even made the following statement after losing everything:   "Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD." (Job 1:21).   He praised God in his despair.  Job said that, if we pray and remember our blessings, God will restore us to joy and righteousness (Job 33:26).

After Job's trials and tribulations, God blessed Job even more than he had it in the past.    Job 42:10-15 (message version) says:  “After Job had interceded for his friends, God restored his fortune—and then doubled it! All his brothers and sisters and friends came to his house and celebrated. They told him how sorry they were, and consoled him for all the trouble God had brought him. Each of them brought generous housewarming gifts.  God blessed Job’s later life even more than his earlier life. He ended up with fourteen thousand sheep, six thousand camels, one thousand teams of oxen, and one thousand donkeys. He also had seven sons and three daughters. He named the first daughter Dove, the second, Cinnamon, and the third, Darkeyes. There was not a woman in that country as beautiful as Job’s daughters. Their father treated them as equals with their brothers, providing the same inheritance."  (If you want to read a good summary of Job story, click here.)

I use the illustration of Job as a reminder that we should pray and remember our blessings daily.  We should praise God in all things at all times--during times of happiness and times of despair (1 Thessalonians 5:18).   Doing so has given me such great joy and I want everyone to have the opportunity to experience this!  Cancer schmancer!

Below are a few of the many reasons I could not stop smiling this weekend:

On Saturday, Luke told me he wanted to build a skyscraper and wanted to use some of Abbey's "megablocks" to do so.  He asked me to assist him, but apparently I wasn't quick enough to approach the task with him.  When I was finally ready and able to assist him, I saw that he had already brought his step stool from the bathroom (that he uses to wash his hands at the sink) to help him place the blocks higher.  This made me smile.  He had already accomplished quite a bit by himself and I was amazed how tall the skyscraper was and at just how resourceful he was.  The skyscraper was significantly taller than him.  But, I got involved and helped him build it higher.  We built a pretty impressive skyscraper.  But on Saturday night, daddy, the ultimate block architect, assisted Luke in building the "skyscraper of all block skyscrapers".  The final product was taller than my 6 foot 3 inch Drew!  (sorry for the poor photo quality--bad lighting and taken with a phone camera):

Drew with the skyscraper--Luke is placing a few more blocks at the base.

not sure what Luke was saying in this photo.  My guess is he was yelling, "Look at the huge skyscraper!"

On Sunday, we aired up the tires in our bikes and the bike trailer and set out on the trails for a biking adventure.  

This was my view on Sunday afternoon.  It was a perfect day--perfect weather, and the trail was so pretty with the trees hovering over.  Pure bliss!   It was the first time that Abbey rode in the bike trailer (kids can't ride in it until they are at least 1 year old.)  As we were riding, I told Drew, "I just can't stop smiling!"  It's a good thing there weren't any bugs flying around or my teeth would have been covered in them!

We all enjoyed the ride and the weather was beautiful.   Abbey giggled loudly each time we went over a bump.  She was not fond of the spiderman hand-me-down helmet from Luke though.   We need to get one for her that fits a little better.

Lastly, here is my little gal "chillaxin" and enjoying the beautiful day today!


  1. Your post made me smile too. Thanks for sharing with us all the wonderful photos of your family. We are praying for God's total healing.

    1. Thank you SO much, Andrea, for your continued prayers!