"Once our eyes are opened, we cannot pretend we don't know what to do. God, who weighs our hearts and keeps our souls, knows that we know, and holds us responsible to act." Proverbs 24:12



“There are no strangers here; Only friends you haven’t yet met.”- William Butler Yeats





Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Rising from the ashes....

"In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."


- I Thessalonians 5:18


::tapping on monitor screen:: Hello? Is anyone still out there that reads this?



I know it's been way too long. A few times, I've opened up to this page and have started to blog, but alas, I can't seem to find the desire to put the words together. So much has happened in the past year with our lives.




Today, I'm committed to writing. This has by no means been an easy blog post to write. It's not one of those full of happy-go-lucky-we're-doing-great kinda posts. It is full of reality. It is full of life. But most of all, it is full of HOPE!




It's something I am ashamed of. I am embarrassed to share and I am being told by the master of deceit that it is no one's business. But indeed, it is and I refuse to harbor those feelings any longer.




I'll tell you why.


Many of you know how I feel about the present administration and about the fact that this country has been going in a downward spiral since he took office in 2008. Sweet hubby's job started tightening the reins. There are now no benefits for employees, because they just can't afford it. The quality of the medical insurance (that they do not pay for) is so bad, and the cost is so outrageously expensive that we don't have medical insurance, with the exception of Kai, who desperately needs it. It's been a few months that we've been in this situation and we've decided we need to do something fast. So, after much prayer and lots and lots of thinking, we've decided to move out of state where Scott could find a job doing what he is prepared to do and where we could have insurance for the entire family.



We started looking and looking. Lo and behold, Scott applied for a position with a large international company that bought out the company he used to work for. He knew all the ins and outs of the position. Within days, we were sent an email stating that he was one of the final candidates, followed by a FedEx envelope full of forms required for new employment and blood orders for a drug screening test. Boy! God was showing himself in a big way. After many months, this was the answer to our prayers! He was going to get a nice pay increase and more importantly, we were getting great medical insurance for the entire family for what seemed like peanuts compared to the cost in Florida.



We praised and thanked Him every time the wonderful thought came into our heads, which was about a hundred times a day. The icing on the cake was that the job was in Tennessee. A placed that I've loved since I could remember and have been to many times. The last was with sweet hubby celebrating a weekend together before we picked up our Anna Grace.



Then, as many of you know, the tax credit that we'd had sitting at the IR*S for the past 4 years had been changed to a refund! Oh, yes! Life certainly was changing for our family in a huge way.



You see, last year the economy got so bad, so quickly, that we were forced to do what sadly many Americans have had to. We had to file for bankruptcy. The home that we had so proudly purchased 7 years before, was surrendered in the process. I felt ashamed that we had lost our house, our credit and were left sitting with nothing.



But, God remained faithful. He was pulling us out of the trenches. A new job was almost at our reach and we were receiving almost $40,000. that had been sitting as credit with the government. It was a new beginning for us! Yes! We were going to fix our old, now falling apart van, and use those funds to move the family to Tennessee, finally have medical insurance and start a new life.



So, that's the story of rising from the ashes. Okay, it's not.



As we waited to hear from the powers that be that sweet hubby had gotten the job and a received a starting date, days turned into weeks. Nothing. We checked in a couple of times and were told that they had to divert their attention from that position to another, but to hang in there a few more weeks and we'd have the answer. It all looked good.



We sighed, but trusted and continued to praise.



We also waited for that big check to come in. There were delays because they were doing a 'review', as most everyone I know who is waiting for their big refund, has been told. Several weeks later. We receive the letter from that infamous agency saying that everything was approved and that our check was on its way! Again, more praising. We just had to learn patience. That's it. God was teaching us patience.



In the meantime, bills continue to pile up. We are looking at another surgery for Kai in the next few weeks and praying daily that no one gets sick or injured while we wait. But, it's all good. Patience is a virtue and God was certainly showing us that.



Fast forward to last week. The email from the new job came in. The company decided to go with the other candidate because he was local. "An easier choice." We felt crushed. How could that happen? Sweet hubby had already done his background checks, drug screening, salary was agreed upon, and he knew everything about the position. It was just figuring out the logistics. Well, it wasn't meant to be. Many tears and many questions to God went up from me. So, what did we do?



WE PRAISED AND WE THANKED HIM!



Yes, it's all His perfect plan. Maybe that wasn't the job that was meant for us. Maybe it wasn't going to be 'the best', and we know God only wants the best for us. So, we dusted our sandals and decided that there was nothing we could do. We have to move forward and God will show us what door it is that he wants us to walk through.



BUT...we still that have big check coming! Yaaay! Although that's not completely the answer to prayers, we could give a big sigh of relief that at least we were able to start over. We continued to thank and praise.



We waited and waited for the check to arrive. I spent more hours on the phone with said 'agency' that I ever thought I could or would want to. Person after person assured me that it was mailed 'over a month ago'. They reviewed the address. They gave me a check number. The date it was mailed. "It must have gotten lost in the mail", we were told. Finally, we were instructed to file a form to trace the check. We did as they suggested.



Just two days ago, they found the check! Yes, it had been mailed. The only problem was that it was mailed to the trustee of the bankruptcy courts and not us. Their letter was apologetic over the 'confusion and inconvenience this may have caused.' The bottom line was that our almost $40k dollars that we were going to start life over again with was to be given back. We happened to file for bankruptcy the same year that the adoption tax refund went from a credit to a refund. Therefore, we are no longer entitled to that money.



So now, no new job. No money. No insurance. No starting over.



But the most important part of this is that we remain steadfast in our faith.





GOD REMAINS FAITHFUL!



GOD REMAINS COMPLETELY TRUSTWORTHY!



GOD REMAINS SOVEREIGN AND OMNIPOTENT!



GOD IS IN CONTROL!



I won't tell you that I received the news and jumped for joy. Oh no! I cried. A lot. I ranted. I questioned. I was devastated and angry and sad and depressed. I felt hopeless. Every single one of those feelings was the flesh. That was the humanness in me.




Then something wonderful happened. God's grace took over. I was not only picked up by a God-fearing husband who said to me, "God's plan is much bigger than that, much better. We have to trust! We have to stand firm in His word and in the fact He is in control of all of this." I knew immediately. THAT was the voice of truth speaking through him.



We again, dusted our sandals, picked ourselves up. This time, with more love and joy and hope in our hearts than we've felt in a long time, we thanked Him and praised His glorious Name! Why? Because we believe in everything He is and was and will be. He has not changed, nor will He ever change.



If you've still not realized why I am sharing such a very personal story is because there may just be a person or two out there that is going through similar situations. I just want you to know that there is ALWAYS hope. There is hope in our Savior. He will never forsake you. You just need to trust that with all of your being. I know personally, that I can't wait to share with you what bigger and better plans He has for us because I know He does.



In the meantime, we continue to thank, praise and honor the Name above all names! We trust Him more than ever now. How awesome is that? To think that life is back on track, and then you end up with nothing again. But it is really nothing? No. We ended up with the most important thing a person can have when they feel so down and so deep in the pit that they can't see the light shining over them. We ended up with HOPE! And that word encompasses all that Jesus is. It encompasses the reason He died on the cross for you and me. He is HOPE!



Come what may, bring the rain because we remain steadfast in saying,



AS FOR ME AND MY HOUSE, WE WILL SERVE THE LORD!


- Joshua 24:15





I pray these words bless you as they have blessed me.



Our circumstances in life are worldly.



Our God's love for us is eternal.

(I do want to add that during Bible study this morning, we were talking about God's promises and so forth and Kai burst out saying, "Mama, we're going to get to the Promised Land.... Tenneessee!". We learned about the Israelites a couple of weeks ago. That made me smile BIG! Yes, baby, we are gonna get to the Promised Land!!!)



16 comments :

RamblingMother said...

I am so sorry this has happened. I was recently laid off again and will be severly underemployed when I return to a temp position at the end of the month. I am losing a house to shortsale/forclosure as well. Terrible economy thanks to the one but not surprising to the ONE Who wants the best for His children even if it isn't what we think personally!

Jennifer said...

Dear Ohilda. How hard! But your willingness to be transparent, to share the struggles so that others can see your faith is to be commended. You are amazing. :) I will continue to pray for you guys...and I am SO EXCITED to see what God has for you that is better than any of those things. Keep hanging on...

Sherri said...

I love you.

mom2-4boys said...

Ohilda,

I am so sorry to hear what you are going through. Thank you for sharing your struggles. I assure you that you are not alone..

I am looking forward to hearing Gods plans for you!!

Welcome back to blogland I missed you...

Suzy said...

I hate that you've been walking a rough patch, but like you, I know God has better things for you and your family. Hope will not disappoint you.

Cheri said...

Oh, Ohilda! I am so sorry. Things are difficult for us all. I am so excited that you still have such hope and a wonderful husband who lifts you up. I pray that you will always be clinging to your Savior during difficult times. Where would we be without Him? I don't want to imagine. Bless you, dear friend.

Karin said...

Ohilda...big hugs! I am so sorry for all the disappointment. You are so right, though. God only has the BEST for you and it will be worth the wait. Thank you for sharing this. I was blessed by reading it. :)

Blessed Single Mom said...

Ohilda, I am sorry you are walking through such a difficult time. I know with your faith and our wonderful Heavenly Father it is just a place to pass through and see how amazing God can be. Thank you for sharing your story.

Marmee said...

We're still reading. And still praising! We love you Ohilda! God has great things planned for you!

Julie said...

Oh Ohilda,

let me just say that we went through something similar 3 yrs ago. I'm going to PM you.

Aus said...

Yeah - we're still reading and checking only like every day!!

And we've been praying - becuase it's not like you to just 'disappear'.

And we're so relieved that after all of this you can still bring Witness to our Faith!

As for the rest - Hold fast old friend - the prayer warriors are working in full force!

hugs - it will get better -

aus and co.

Sara said...

Oh Ohilda....I have missed you!!!! Like REALLY missed you. So glad you posted. I was wondering "where" you went...but didn't want to TELL you to post already!!! Hhahaha!! Keeping you in my prayers. You are amazing!!!

Dawn said...

So glad you are posting and being so honest and hopeful as well. I think this adoption tax credit is going to disappoint many of us... In these last days, we as HIS body, will see Him provide for us in many and different ways then we have ever expected. And soon and very soon we will have "mansions" right next to each other! What a party we will have!
Lets keep praying and looking up!
Dawn

TanyaLea said...

Ohilda, I am SO sorry I missed this post last month. I follow you on FB, and somehow I still missed it. You are always such an encourager, and I love that about you. It's no secret I share your feeling about the current administration and what has happened to our nation since he took office on that sad day. But seeing the affects it has had on the lives of so many I love, is just plain hard. I was just griping to my husband the other night, as we've had yet another insurance plan change. The 'control' of it feels so socialist already, and sometimes I just get angry and almost lose it. But I need to reflect on your post and the scripture you started of with: "In EVERYTHING give thanks, for this is the will of God, in Christ Jesus concerning you."

Yes, I know, I need to praise Him in the storm. And even when it feels like there isn't a cent left over at the end of the month, I need to praise Him some more. And I need to make sure we continue to bring our tithes and offerings to the storehouse, so that all of our needs will continue to be met. That one can be harder for the hubs to wrap his mind around, especially during times of lack. But God has been showing His faithfulness in that arena, too. I just want it to take solid root in my hubby's heart, so that he never wavers when it comes to that.

Faith: the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of what's unseen.

Yep, still cultivating that in our hearts on a pretty regular basis. Always longing to grow in this area.

I'm so sorry you have experienced such difficult circumstances. Yet as I witness your attitude and your decision to PRAISE Him through the storm, I am excited, because I KNOW He blesses that faithfulness, and in return, He will be faithful to see you through and BLESS abundantly, more than you could ask or think... and I for one, cannot WAIT to hear that praise report when it comes in!

Keeping you close in thoughts and prayers, sweet friend.

Love and Hugs,
~ Tanya

Isaiah 40:31 ~ "But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint."

Heidi said...

I just found your blog through someone else who follows my blog...isn't that a funny way we get connected these days?
I made a post just last week...in some ways a similar story to yours, but we are still waiting even for that little glimmer of hope for a job for my hubby. He lost his job in 2010 AFTER we uprooted and moved from Wisconsin to Georgia. Leaving all family/friends behind. It's been a long journey, and God has done great things, but we are just entering that really desperate place again---last payment we can make--but He has us still clinging on. We have not gotten to bankruptcy yet. And are still just getting ready to file our taxes for our refund. But, the repeated theme of heartache is similar. I made this post last week...not sure if it will encourage you or not, but here it is...http://breadandotherprovisions.blogspot.com/2012/02/i-lift-my-hands.html

Laine said...

Ohilda I was just checking in on you...thinking of you tonight!

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