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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

2011...we chose JOY

We chose JOY.

In 2011, we walked a path that was new to us but God, our family and friends walked along side us with comfort and love.
These difficult times have helped us to realize and
remember how infinitely rich and beautiful life is.
Our son, Eric, passed away on May 4th from complications of his
bone marrow transplant.  He left us with a lifetime of happy
memories. Although it is tremendously hard to be without him,
 we take JOY in knowing he is enjoying the presence of Jesus.

We have found our family….and have drawn even closer.
We have found our friends who have surrounded us.
We have found JOY…in our church family...such support.
We have found JOY in Sam...insert smile.
We have found JOY in  each ordinary day.

“Dear God, thanks for this beautiful life.  
Forgive us if we haven’t loved it enough.”

On those ordinary days...Ben can be found in his shop building houses for the American Kestrel Falcon.  Or he can be found at  agriculture meetings  promoting his latest business, Orchard Guard....showing orchardists how to protect their crops from bird damage.

On those ordinary days, Shari can be found in her craft room
creating greeting cards that will touch people’s hearts or maybe even make them laugh. Or, she can be found along with her business partner, Nadine, promoting their business, Paper Blessings, selling their greeting cards and other paper “blessings”.

On those ordinary days, Sam can be found  at the foot of anyone  willing to give him a bit of love.

As we  welcome this  wonderful time of year, 
may our hearts celebrate 
the true reason for the season 
and may our homes be warmed by 
His JOY, peace and love.
Merry Christmas,
Ben and Shari….Sam too

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

I've got it!...I'm jumpin' up and down excited!

Those of you who know me, know that each year I choose a WORD...just be my guiding light, my mantra...a benchmark.

For 2010, my word was PEACE.  Eric had just been diagnosed with Cancer.  I needed PEACE.  God gave me  that when I needed it most.  For 2011, my word was JOY.  God provided JOY even in the midst of our grief at losing Eric.

Now for 2012...I choose GIVE. I believe God will use this to continue to heal the pain that is ever present.

365 days of PURPOSEFUL gift-giving.  
Here's the deal...every day I will purposefully look for a way to gift someone. 
(stuff I do anyway won't count)  It has to be purposefully.  
The gift can be my time, something tangible, money...maybe even something hard to give.  
Get this picture?  Want to join me in the fun journey? 
 I am "jumpin' up and down" excited about this.  Something special is going to happen, I just know it!
'The Lord has abundantly blessed me all of my life.  I am not trying to pay him back for all His wonderful gifts.  I just realize He gave them to me to give away.'
My GIFT to YOU today is a REMINDER
We all have gifts to share