Thursday, October 31, 2013

Build and Demolish

  • This past week has kept us mostly home, just a chiropractor visit, church, a fall festival, and Grandma took Aolani to the library for some new books :)
  • Foot: The chiropractor thinks that the bones in my foot are not out of joint but a callous has formed on it and causes all the pain. We go to the podiatrist tomorrow and find out what's happening...
  • Miscarriage: I am still bleeding with yesterday being my heaviest day so far. Hopefully, it lessens by Monday or I have to go in for another scan.
  • Micaiah loves "futballll"; he is so going to enjoy Thanksgiving with my family ;)
  • Aolani and I were rubbing noses last night while we were cuddling, and she exclaimed, "Mommy, Mommy! Our noses are going teeter-totter!" ;)
Our dear friend gave Micaiah his first real haircut (bittersweet; he looks so much older now).
 Micaiah got to blow each hair clump after it was cut. He did great!
Baking apple cookies with Grandma
Sink or float activity
 Funnel fun (with rice)

 Pool-noodle painting
 A big ship (I don't know if the farm animals are the crew or passengers)
 Aolani always buckles up when she gets in my wheelchair -- safety first ;)
Grandma brought her large puppy puzzle for Aolani to play with; she does it by herself several times a day! [Aolani and I do a small puzzle every other week, and she has gotten so good at it that I called her my 'puzzle pro' last week.]

This is one of our favorite books -- Who Said Coo?
  • Verse to memorize this: Colossians 3:8 ~ But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

God's Leading to Symptometry -- Part 3

Remember how earlier this month I mentioned that a big announcement would be forthcoming? Well, that is this post. {It's like Part 3 of the healing series I've been doing. Here's Part 1 and Part 2.}

I'll begin with a story. A true story that happened on a Saturday morning in late June of this year.

My perspective:
We run into a Romanian woman at the Farmers' Market. She tells us all about her daughter, also in a wheelchair, who was on her death bed just a year ago. Her body was jaundiced and shutting down before her parents' eyes (basically, the insides of her body had stopped working). The parents traveled around the country seeking help and spent $60,000 in the process. To no avail. I do not want to tell their story in details, but... the daughter was dying before their eyes and in excruciating pain. Anyway, after much prayer and fasting, God intervened and spoke to them about their daughter's healing. They were led towards this program called Symptometry and the daughter started it last summer. While the daughter is still in the healing process, her results so far are nothing short of miraculous.

Okay. So, the lady quickly tells us all this and gives us her contact information, telling us to get in touch with her if we want to get together.

However, I had just found out that I'm pregnant, and I store this encounter away in my mind for when I can better process it a few months down the road.

The Romanian lady's perspective (from what I have gathered from this family during different interactions): Her husband tells her a month beforehand that God told him that he was going to meet and minister to a young woman in a wheelchair.

The week before we meet, God tells the lady that she is going to meet the girl in the wheelchair soon.

That morning she prays for God to direct her steps, and He tells her to go to the Farmers' Market. She thinks, "Huh. I've never been to the Farmers' Market." She gets busy doing other things but leaves late morning to go to it.

She gets there and walks all over searching for a girl in a wheelchair but cannot find me. Finally, she is on her way out when she feels God prodding her to turn around. And, out of nowhere, there I am. She thinks that I must be the girl.

Then, the talk (and hugs).

She left thinking, "Well God, now this is in Your hands." After months of silence on our part, she wondered what would happen but knew that she had done her part. End her perspective.

Yeah -- quite a God-ordained encounter.

A couple months ago, we get to processing this and realize that the five of us (my mom included) should at least go over to their house and chat. So, we did (and have since formed a good friendship).

There are many details I could tell. But, I'll spare you.

We spent most of September praying about God's leading for us and whether or not He wanted us to pursue Symptometry. We ordered and read several books; we checked out the website and did Google searches about it. We watched YouTube clips. And, to be honest, we were not that impressed. If it were not for the Romanian daughter's healing story, we would not have been giving Symptometry any real thought (especially since it's dietary part is so paradigm-shifting and different from everything we have ever heard or thought).

Basically, it all came down to God's leading. That's all we wanted. And, it is all we needed.

Soon, we came to believe that Symptometry appeared to be God's leading for us and that Symptometry is what He might use to bring about my physical healing, the fulfillment of that promise to me twelve and a half years ago.

Now, this threw us off guard because... well, we naturally had always assumed that whenever God chose to manifest my healing, it would be instantaneous. You know, like when the Beast transformed back into his human form (from the Disney movie Beauty and the Beast). We never, ever thought this miracle might be a process.

Then, when we felt like God was giving us the green light, I was sort of hush-hush about it. I didn't know how to get into it, and I did not want people to think that we were pursuing my healing versus the Healer. And, it's tricky to get into God's leading and the prophecy and Symptometry and try to connect them, in a short-story fashion.

Anyway, the Symptometry therapy program has two parts: a "detox" part that involves taking particulates and a dietary part that takes a lot of work.

I have not yet begun taking the particulates per the doctor's instructions to wait until Avalynn's body is out of my womb. Also, I wanted to get all this posted before I begin.

However, I have begun the diet part. It is a lot of work. My mom is doing a ton, and I've recruited my friend, Superwoman, to do a lot of baking, cooking, and preparing (I could not do this diet without her help). Before we started three weeks ago, I had a lot of preparation (creating meals, changing my recipe book, making lists galore, ordering the right things, researching, etc.) to do -- about 60 hours worth. This first month has been a huge learning curve for us. I could go on and on, but I'll stop. We've been busy to say the least. [This is a big reason my mom is here -- to help us get started and find a groove.]

*I want to add that while we did not think Symptometry had much credibility on its own, (besides the real-life story of the Romanian daughter) we have since begun to see the science behind it all and think that it might be dead-on. It's only been in the public arena for a few years, which is why many (all) people have not heard of it. Symptometry has had success even with people who have had genetic diseases, because it involves getting down to the cellular and DNA level; Symptometry is all about treating the root cause of health problemsWe are excited about God's leading!

We don't expect anyone to agree with us about Symptometry. We know the proof will be in the pudding :)

Anticipating what God has in store for us,

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Blood, Bones, Bedtime, and Books

  • Our schedules are picking back up somewhat -- flea market, cooking dinner for some friends, doctor appointment, small group, Rick had an all-day conference yesterday...
  • I have (finally) begun bleeding this week and am still going...
  • We went to our family doctor for a foot problem I've been having. I thought a blister had formed on the bottom of my right sole, but the doctor said that was not the case. He thought that two of my bones had slipped out of joint and that the pain I felt if there was any pressure on it was from standing on the bone. Anyway, he wants me to see a podiatrist for it -- appointment is next Friday. We are going to make a cushion for it in the meantime.
  • Aolani was still drenching her diaper at night; however, I figured she's three-and-a-half and doesn't need diapers at night. So, I told her once the diapers were gone, she could use a few pull-ups that we had. Then, I told her three things once the pull-ups came out. One, she could get up to potty if she needed to at night. Two, Daddy will take you to the potty right before he gets in bed (between 11 p.m. and midnight usually). Three, if she doesn't pee in her pull-up after seven nights in a row, then she can wear panties to bed. Ten nights of pull-ups, peed in them once (when Ricky did not take her potty one night; so not really her fault), starts panties tonight! She is so proud of herself ;) Why ever did I wait this long? She was very ready for this. [We have learned that Ricky must take her potty once at night to avoid any accidents.]
  • After we would watch one book together before her nap, she would always ask to watch another one. My answer always depended on time; yes was the common answer. However, if my answer was not what she wanted to hear (no), then she would throw a fit and scream and other negative behavior. I fixed that by telling her that if she could not accept no graciously and throws a tantrum, then she will automatically not get to watch a book the next day. It took a few weeks for her to figure out the cause-effect, but she's got it now :)
  • Sorry for the lack of photos this week. This 30-second video is not that special, so skip it if you are short on time.
  • Verse to memorize this week: Colossians 3:7 ~ You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

God's Promise to Heal Me -- Part 2

Not quite share how to segue into this, but…

Last week I shared about praying for healing. While that is one reason that we pray for my personal physical healing (because He has not said no), there is actually another reason as well. And that is...

Twelve and a half years ago, God spoke to me about my physical healing. Here is a short excerpt from when I spoke at one of my college's chapel services about 10 years ago that tells this part of my story. Warning: my name in this video is Leslie Oliver. As I briefly mentioned before and will detail later on, God changed my name (but it was about a year after this speech).

I edited the speech, so this first video is just the one-minute part of me talking about the promise. However, Ricky insisted that I, at least, give you the option of watching my whole eight-minute speech about my disease and hope. This is the second video. [It is from 10 years ago. While I feel I have changed a lot since then, and I want to change many things I say or how I say them... oh well. This is me a decade ago ;)]

Now, I want to add why I have not talked about this a whole lot since I have gotten married six plus years ago. It was during our engagement that I learned about how this present earth will likely be burned and then renewed to become the new earth. When God told me that He was going to heal me on "this earth", I got to thinking that I wasn't sure about whether He meant this present earth or the new earth, since both are "this earth". While confident in His promise to heal me, the timing became all the more unknown. Hence, I shared this word less, which I regret. At least Ricky shared this word plenty when I was silent.

Here's Part 1 and Part 3.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Looking Here, There, and Up

  • I had an ultrasound a couple days ago, and Avalynn's body is finally breaking down. My uterus is closing in on her body, and she is just a little heap now. [I must admit that it was quite sad to see her little body collapsing into a heap.] No real bleeding yet, but that explains the spotting going on for a week now. So, now we're waiting for her imminent arrival.
  • Micaiah's mishaps: is a climbing monster, copies everything his sister does, wants attention and to be included, and is trying to say most words (not clearly though).
  • Aolani's antics: calls the Disney movie 101 Dalmastations (it is super cute), called our friend named Peggy Miss Piggy :), while eating yogurt with papaya in it she told Grandma "You can put blueberries in this... you can go to the store and get some. You can; you can!", pretends to order pizza for us on a "phone" and requests for Daddy "pineapple juice with some pizza on it" (her version of pizza with pineapple on it)...
  • We watched an adult movie one night, and Aolani got up a few times. The third time she asked Ricky to turn it down a little and said, "That scary thing woke me up." He tucked her in her bed. When we went to bed later on, Aolani was sleeping with her brother in his crib. I guess she thought there was strength in numbers ;)

Can you see the foam rails under the sheets? 

Sorry this video is so dark... we keep the blackout curtain pulled close, and I didn't think to open it.
Here is a shot of half of our living room (picked up!)


Oh, and our banana milkshakes consist of 4 bananas, 1.5 cups evaporated milk, and plenty of cinnamon.
  • Verse to memorize this week: Colossians 3:6 ~ Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. 

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Why We Pray What We Do {Healing} -- Part 1

I think about this often -- probably because it is controversial, somewhat.

Sometimes, you run into those people who simply pray for God's will to be done without praying for specifics. Now, while we always intentionally pray for God's will to prevail, we pray for specifics.

Yes -- regarding physical healing. After declaring our ultimate desire for His will to be done, we pray for so-and-so to receive healing in their such-and-such.

"If it is His will not to physically heal so-and-so on this earth, then why are you praying for it?"

Good question.

Offhand, I can think of three examples in the Bible that lead us to pray thus. One, we feel commanded to pray for healing (James 5:16). Two, in 3 John 1:2 he prays that his brethren would enjoy good health -- should we not also pray likewise? Three, James 5 also tells us of Elijah's radicals prayers for it to not rain and then rain. And it happened. And, Elijah was a man with a nature just like ours. Those are some crazy-prayers with crazy-specifics.

That's enough reason for me to ask for miraculous healings, that are according to His will.

Now, let me add an important aside right here: We make it extremely clear that physical healing is for God to get all the glory; it is not just for our desire for comfort and ease. We need to always remember to keep the correct purpose forefront in our hearts, minds, words, and prayers.

Okay... the awkwardness. I will admit that when I pray for someone's physical healing, and, well, that person is not healed right then and there, I can feel discouraged and uncomfortable. Maybe even a little foolish. But, I don't worry about the momentary outcome or my feelings of awkwardness because I feel like I obeyed Scripture and...

Just because it did not happen instantaneously, when you want, doesn't mean anything at all. Many (okay, most all) people assume that because a person has not received their healing quickly, then God must be denying their request. Whether He is denying them or not, they make time out to be god and let time speak for Him. They think time proves God's will. We should let God speak for Himself, not time.

The real problem is our lack of patience and persistence. If He has not said no, do not assume. Jesus told several parables exalting persistence and persistent prayer. Paul asked for his thorn to be removed three times before God spoke up. In other words, he kept asking and only stopped because God talked to him about it. That is an example to me. We should keep knocking and asking until He tells us no or speaks to us about the issue. We should not stop asking or praying just because time has us waiting.

There could be years of silence. But all that means is keep waiting and keep pressing on (with joy in your daily grind) and keep praying. It does not mean that because God did not perform on my timeline, then His answer must have been 'no.'

A friend of mine, a missionary in Haiti, wrote this on her blog recently, about perseverance:
"Luke has been blessing my socks off with story after story of people, MY people, who stepped out on simple faith, radiated truth and belief, and were in turn crucial parts of His story. People filled with the Holy Spirit, people waiting and praying and believing for insane amounts of time. Young and old people -- self-declared bondservants of the Lord -- believing and stepping out in faith that crazy stuff would happen.
So that it could.
As I think upon their long-suffering, their perseverant prayers, their mostly mountain top moments recorded and daily heartbreak/monotony mostly unknown, I am reminded of His many many calls in Scripture to be steady."
Unless He has spoken, do not let deteriorating health or time or silence sway you. Keep believing and trusting and praying -- until you hear his voice about the matter. Embrace the call to be steady. Persevere, my friend. 

{whether praying about physical healing for yourself or for others}

Here's Part 2 and Part 3.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

What is Death to a Three Year-Old?

  • Well, I'm going to announce that I will be making a big announcement on here later this month -- sorry for the suspense! So, most of this week's past activities will have to wait for that disclosure ;)
  • The other day Aolani shut us in the bedroom and declared, "We're going to die!" I responded by asking her if she knew what 'die' even means. She answered affirmatively and shouted, "JESUS!" I cannot express the pride, joy, tenderness, love, and sheer delight I felt knowing that she got it right. I pray that she will never fear death but realize that it is just a door to His presence!
  • Micaiah is obsessed with animals, animal noises, and face-parts.
  • I am seriously lacking pictures this week -- sorry. 
  • Verse to memorize this week: Colossians 3:5 ~ Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry.  

Monday, October 7, 2013

Be Thou My Vision {video}

I am aiming to start writing again next weekend, but this past weekend was slammed!

Well, this is beautifully sung. This guy did several songs, but I'm posting this hymn because Ricky (and I) sing it to the kids every night before bed. It was our class hymn (from college) and is, therefore, special to us.

[Thanks to Ann Voskamp for sharing this guy's videos.]

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Broken to Fixed

  • Ricky's parents visited over the weekend, which truly was a God-send because... 
  • A few days prior, Micaiah was playing too rough in his crib and busted the bottom out. Although it was temporarily fixable, I did not feel like it was safe. So, I typed up a list and sent everyone to IKEA to pick up all  the necessary items for new bunk beds! Aolani sleeps on the bottom bunk, and Micaiah sleeps in her old toddler crib-bed. Micaiah gets to sleep with a blanket now, and we decided to skip daytime nursing (leaving it at twice a day, morning and night). Aolani has her very first pillow, and we use these neat foam rails to keep her from rolling off the bed. Both of our kids love the new bunk beds and treat them like a jungle gym ;) I'll take a picture for next week.
  • Oh, and I'm still waiting on Avalynn! But, my final two pregnancy symptoms went away this past week -- insomnia and having to get up at night to potty -- woohoo!
  • On our way to church, we pass road construction. Micaiah keeps pointing and yelling, "Dirt, dirt, dirt, dirt, dirt!" Nonna says, "Micaiah, you talk very well." Aolani adds, "Yeah, Micaiah talk dirt." :)
  • Micaiah was in his highchair being naughty, hitting probably. Aolani went up to him and said, "Jesus doesn't want you to hit. Be kind to one another. Create in you a pure heart," lays her hand on his chest and repeats it. "Those are Mommy's Bible verses she taught me." :) :) :)
  • The following three shots are from August:

  • One day last week, we did an expressions' photo shoot:

Micaiah made it through two pictures before wiggling down!

  • Verse to memorize this week: Colossians 3:4 ~ When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Set a Fire {video}

Working on balancing our budget and playing Will Reagan's Set a Fire song over and over... it's taking way too long because I cannot help stopping every minute to.just.worship.

*Some other Will Reagan worship songs we like: Bless the Lord, Commission, Break Every Chain, Take Back...