Thursday, September 26, 2013

The Day of Small Things

Zechariah 4:10 For who has despised the day of small things?

          09.24.2013. Today, the Lord has answered one of my heart's desires....to be a part of a CT and scrap my heart out! Amazingly, the site/store's name is  'Leaving a Legacy Designs'.  Scrapping has always been a way for me to unwind and relax. Normally, I would do a layout for days but yesterday, I've seen the Lord's power at work when I finished my first 2 layout assignments in just a few hours!

          I thank the Lord for every blessing that he showers us, big or small I treasure them for they come from the hand of my loving Father. Though I am undeserving of His favor, still He grants my prayers.  Just as I want to bless my kids, God delights in blessing me, too.

          David Guzik said that the day of small things are not to be despised. they are days of priceless shaping and preparation. The small markers of faith in my walk, my small achievements, small victories, small steps that I take, someday, God will pool all of them together revealing a grand plan for my life.

         Thank you Lord Jesus for the joy you give me every morning and the hope you bring for a wonderful future. :-)

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Here's a link to Leaving a Legacy Designs store: Leaving a Legacy Designs





and my first 2 layouts using the kit - Happy Fall Y'All. Grab it while it's 30% off!



Aethan - when he was 6 years old

Our Homeschool Coop







Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Blessing of Unanswered Prayer


     Finally, our packet 4 arrived.  We were scheduled for our U.S. immigrant visa interview last Monday, Sept. 16, 2013.

RN - New York State


    
     I applied for an EB-3 Visa way back in 1996 after I passed the NCLEX exam.  My husband and I thought then that it was the best for us. Oh Yes, there was a time when our plans were anchored to that great American dream.  We prayed for it for a long time and in between prayers, were frustrated cries. During this time, we were in our deepest valley .  Our bills were piling up, we were not able to pay our bank loans and credit cards. We had nothing.  We thought the visa was the answer to our problems.  I asked the Lord why it was taking a long time for us to leave but He was silent and I know He was asking me to trust Him.  John Piper said that great songs are born out of sufferings. Mine was born out of our valleys, in the midst of frustration.

     One of our pastors said that during trials, God wants us to PREPARE, PRAY and PRESS ON. And so we did and we started by obeying God's call to make disciples. By God's grace, my husband and I were able to start a couples group. I also started praying for God's will, not mine. If It is not His will for us to migrate then I asked the Lord to close the doors. As we grew in our walk, my fear changed from not being able to migrate to leaving everything and finding out too late that it is not God's will for us.  I believe that the best place for my family is where God puts us.  

     Unanswered prayers are blessings in disguise.  During our time of waiting (7 years), God worked in my heart, aligning my desires with His.  My priorities have changed also as God called us to homeschool our kids so we can train them to be God-fearing and guide and encourage them to reach their fullest potentials.  My 2 boys are growing up fast and I don't want to miss any single moment.  I want to be with them, to homeschool them ( I cannot do that if I work).   I want to impact their lives in such a way that our kids, their future kids --- the next generation after them would follow God.

     Seeing all that God is doing in our lives, I was worried about what I will do once the visa arrives. I cried at the thought of leaving everything -- our dgroup, our homeschool coop, our church, our ministry ... I was already in my comfort zone. As our priority date moved nearer, I struggled with God and said, "What will happen to our dgroup, Lord, we are growing, we cannot leave them...." and God said, "They are not your Dgroup, they are mine. You are just My steward. It will grow even if I remove you from it." And I argued one more time, "Lord, if it is your will for us to homeschool, how can I teach if I'm working? How can you ask us to leave all this?”  My husband said if it is in God's best plan for us to stop homeschooling then we have no choice but to obey knowing that it is best for us.  This freaked me out because I thought homeschooling was one of our "non-negotiables".  It caused a bitter argument but again God said, "Anak, as a wife, didn't I ask you to submit and respect your husband?" .... and that silenced me. I never brought up the issue again. God made me realize that my fear was all about my wants and not His.  I just sought my Lord until my heart was calm. The moment I finally surrendered all my desires to Him, that was when I felt peace knowing that He is faithful.  I trust Him completely.

     Until the day came when the very thing that caused me stress was right before my eyes.  

our visa interview schedule - just had to delete some info


    We received our packet 4 one month before the scheduled interview.  

     Should we go or not?   I talked to Alvin and asked him what we will do.  His answer totally surprised me.  He said our priorities have changed and God has called us to homeschool! I wanted to kiss and hug him right there and then. He said he has been waiting for the right time to tell me what he felt, God provided the right timing.

     I praised God for the blessing of submission.  I need not contend with my husband when my desires seem different from his. Instead, I just need to lift it up to our Lord.    Sa kanya ako nagsusumbong, umiiyak, nagsusumamo.  What I cannot do, He will do.  I praise Him for completely changing Alvin's heart about this visa and about homeschooling.   God also gave me the courage to write to my Mama and Tita Angie about our choice to stay.  I know their hearts were broken but I know they understand. 

     Should we go or not? At the back of my mind, I signed a contract, and as a Christian, I have a duty to see that everything is in order.    I wrote to NVC and explained about our change in priorities but received their reply just today, 3 days after the scheduled interview.    I also have not been in touch with my employer for years already. They have not contacted me also.  So I thought there may be a glimmer of hope here for me.  I texted and emailed my agency ( I lost their landline number when we changed phones) but did not receive any reply (I was actually praying for that, too.lol )  I asked the Lord to give us wisdom on what to do.  On that same day, he led me to different nursing blogs. I registered in one and found out that before you can be given a visa, you would need to have an updated job offer.  They said it would be useless attending the exit interview because the visa will be "pending due to unavailability of job offer".

     Should we go or not? I did my part. God did His.  There is no doubt in my mind  that the Lord wants us to stay.  We did not attend the interview anymore.  Not that we don't want to migrate  but now, we rely on God to lead us.  We are not closing any door but one thing I know, it would not be under the present circumstances.

      Everything ...  every decision ...  all priorities become simple in the light of eternity.  Thank you for Your goodness, Lord, You have been so good ... so good ... so good...You have been so good to me!


Psalm 37:3-6
Trust in the Lord and do good.
Dwell in the land, cultivate faithfulness,
Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.
Commit your way to the Lord.
Trust also in Him and He will do it...


“Any any choice that takes us away from God is, in the long run, the wrong way.”-Woodrow Kroll
 

An entry from my journal - finally ALIGNED with GOD, ALIGNED with my husband




Our Dgroup
andrea gold template 902
Laitha's design
papers bykathryn estry

Our Dgroup
Scrapangie spicy 1/2012 dd
I do by franb
brandy murry cluster
J - art for scrapbooking

with my boys
Bouquet DES MÈRES  Maria designs
Wa by WA world

With our homeschool coop
Trixie scrap template
jenn ck designs empowerment mini
wa world