Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Skateboarding Mama!

My mother who will be 74-years old next week sent me this email a couple of days ago about her trip to see my brother, his wife and their kids Texas. The email was intended just for me, but I requested permission to share it. Keep in mind we all compare my mother to Lucille Ball.

Here is her story:  

"The day I arrived in El Paso the kids wanted me to go out and watch them skate board.... (well it's your fault, I see picts of your little children doing it so I think.... I'd like to try that... if Rachel's little kids can, surely I can…) 

I can ice skate, roller skate, etc.  I won't do any trick or anything like that... I'll just cruise down the street like they are doing.  So Lauren gives me a skate board!!!  I put one foot on it and as I lift the other, zoom! The thing zooms out from under me and leaves me crashing on the pavement.

I yelped, 'Oh no! my beautiful hip, my beautiful hip!!'  (Not that it was beautiful to look at but it was working beautifully.) 

The children laughed and picked me up.  I was hurt so badly.  

Lauren [her granddaughter] went in and told Bonnie, 'Nanny fell off the skateboard!' 

Bonnie:  'Is she hurt?' 

Lauren:  'I don't think so, she's not crying!'"

(Note from me:  Pause for a moment and remember she is 74- YEARS OLD!! I had to stop to laugh hysterically as I pictured my mother flying in the air! What 74-year old woman tries to skate board? I can't even stay on a skate board!!! Now that's a woman who is truly trying to live every second of her life!! :-))

"We laughed about it and I prayed about 50 times that day hoping that I didn't break my wrist and/or hip.   People my age have that happen with smaller falls than that!  I just couldn't sit for several days very well and stairs were hard but as I continued to move, it helped and I am back in shape now. 

The wrist is what is taking longer to heal.  Mike said he could x-ray, but I felt it wasn't broken... just badly jammed with a palm wound.  Aaron [her grandson] had just had a skate board accident the day before and we had our picture taken sharing our matching hand wounds.  I have to wear a wrist brace till it heals.  It was black and blue and it still hurts. *~X( at wits' end  

Over and over again I said…"That was so stupid!!!!"  (Stupid is a 4 letter swear word only worse because it's 6 bad letters.)

Over and over again I thanked God it was not worse.  

So... I skate boarded but only for one millionth of a second!!! (and never again)*:D big grin 
Love, mom.  "

What a funny, lively woman!!  What a blessing she is in our lives, and how grateful to God we are that she is still walking after her skateboard attempt! 

I Need YOUR Help

Gosh, I have so much I want to write about and not enough hours in the day! I can't express how therapeutic it is to put in writing the many ways the Lord is blessing my life. It is healing to go back to a dark few months and see more clearly the miracles along the way… to see HIS ALMIGHTY HAND.

I have been feeling strongly that I would like for YOU: my readers and friends, to share YOUR stories of faith and miracles because YOUR stories strengthen me. I'm not sure exactly how it will turn out, but so many of you have shared your experiences via email, I would love permission to share them on my blog. It is a blessing to share these miracles from God. (I know that some are too private, sacred and personal.) Ever since my children began writing their miracles, they have a tendency to recognize God's goodness in their lives even more.

I have found that ever since I returned to writing again, I am so much more focused on the good in the world. My perspective changes when I write… I feel as if I open a column of personal communication and revelation from God for my life when I take the time to meditate on my life.

I would love it if YOU would share YOUR faith-building experiences to my email, and I will share one of those stories every week on my blog (with your permission only.) I can share it anonymously or with your name- whatever you choose.

My email address is mydailymiracles@gmail.com. 

Please do not stop sharing your experiences with me! I will only share them on my blog if you give me permission.

I know the Lord is working through and in all of our lives, and we are mutually uplifted as we see how HE is creating such personalized miracles for each of our lives… all with the same perfect love.

Please share your stories with me to my email. God is in all the details of our lives. HE is there… even when we do unthinkable things… like try to skateboard as a Senior Citizen!  God is so good!!

Monday, March 30, 2015

Fluffy & Rumblemuffin

Our Bunny Miracle

This past Christmas was AMAZING. I promise to write this week about the miracles that happened at Christmastime with our wish lists… people are so good!

The day before Christmas Eve, I asked Jordan what he wanted for Christmas. He said he didn't need anything at all. (He knew we didn't have very much money and didn't want to put stress on the family.) Tyson overheard him and said, "Jordan go-ahead and tell mom what you really want." 

After much hesitation, he said, "I want a pet that I can cuddle with."

Shocked because I already have about a million human bodies to feed and clean up after, I said "Oh no Jordan- no pets!!" 

Then, he sweetly said, "That's ok. What about a fish?" 

I was touched by his sweet response, and the wheels began turning in my head of how to satisfy his wish. To cover up I said, "No way, Jordan." 

He responded sweetly, "That's ok. A pretend fish?"

Oh my gosh… he was breaking my heart!!  I told Jordan I was sorry but he would have other gifts for Christmas.

That day I called his old football coach. He breeds rabbits. I asked him what was required to take care of a rabbit. He told me to come over the following day, and he would give Jordan a rabbit and a temporary cage. I was so excited!!! On Christmas Eve, Abe and I snuck the cage into our bathroom. 

The rabbit was one of our last gifts to pull out… Jordan and EVERYONE ELSE were thrilled to see the cute, little, brown rabbit… a REAL ONE!!  

They adored this rabbit. I have posted pictures of Juliana with the brown rabbit. They named him Fluffy. 

One day, about a month ago, Juliana left the cage open during the night and Fluffy was gone by morning. The boys immediately ran through the woods looking for him. With sad faces and drooped shoulders, they returned with no Fluffy. The empty cage was devastating for everyone. All kinds of big, wild animals roam through our yard; some have even tried to get into Fluffy's tiny cage. We were certain that Fluffy was gone for good...and most likely dead.

We all prayed for Fluffy, but Mariah continued to pray with the most faith for Fluffy's safe return. I greatly doubted the likelihood of his return. 

The same day that Fluffy was gone, I called our friend and delivered the sad news about Fluffy. I told him I would be returning his cage that day. He immediately insisted that we keep the cage and come pick out a new rabbit. 

By that same afternoon, we came home with a small, white rabbit. The children named him Rumblemuffin.

Rumblemuffin was with us for only two days when Juliana looked outside and saw Fluffy hopping to our front porch! Our brown bunny had returned! You should have seen the excitement! We ran after him so wildly that he ran off scared and we had to chase him down in the forest. 

Mariah immediately reminded us that God brought Fluffy back home safely. 

She was right… what a sweet blessing from God to see Fluffy!  Not only was he alive, but he was sitting on our porch!! God cares about us. God cares about our children. God cares about what makes us happy. We all know that God answered our prayers- especially that of Mariah who maintained her faith and continued to pray for Fluffy. 

God kept little Fluffy safe from the animals in the woods and brought him home. 

God can CERTAINLY bring all of us safely home!!!

But now we had two bunnies!!!  

This too was a blessing. If we hadn't lost the first one, we wouldn't have had the courage to get a second one… and the children were even MORE overjoyed!! 

But now we needed a bigger cage… 

Abe could see that the children were definitely in love with these bunny rabbits, so he did something COMPLETELY out of his nature. He borrowed some tools, turned our garage into a carpenter's lab and built a rabbit hutch.. in his "spare" time.

Yes… my cute city man built a rabbit hutch for the children's bunnies. He even built a divider in case we get a female bunny and some day want baby bunnies… we will wait a bit for that! 

But look at what Abe built!!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

The Talent Show: Touching Hearts

Last fall my children were in a fashion show that was a fundraiser for a wonderful organization called  Clarita's House. http://www.claritashouse.com  I was in charge of the children models. I told my kids to give it their all out there on the runway… oh my goodness… they DID!! They strutted their way to the end and danced their hearts out. Jordan was the highlight of the event when he dropped to the ground and did the worm!  Baby Jayden ran out after him. He too dropped to the ground. I thought he had fallen down! Nope… he was trying to do the worm too. The audience laughed, cheered, and snapped all kinds of pictures. It was a fun day, and the event was a great success.

The following is the video they made with highlights from the fashion show. The first minute and fifty seconds have a little bit of each of us. Even though we missed Jordan and Jayden's second entrance with the worm on the stage, they have a snip of Jordan practicing his worm before the show at 3 minutes and 34 seconds. Crazy little boy… :-)


Soon after the fashion show, we received an email requesting that my children perform in a competition talent show in the Orlando area because they had heard about the kids' performances on the runway. I gladly accepted the invitation. If nothing else, I knew the children would have fun. 

Our family had just sang the song "Glorious" for a Christmas program we had put on at church. (Stephanie Mabey sang and wrote the song, and David Archuleta made it famous.) This song is very close to our heart.

The following link is David Archuleta's version:


Tyson, Jordan and Mariah prepared to sing "Glorious" in the younger kids division, and Jackson prepared a piece on his drum set to compete against the older kids.

Two days before the talent show, the organizers of the event informed me that I would need to prepare a second number in case our children made it to the finals. What?!? I didn't have time to prepare a second piece. The children sang through a couple songs that they could possibly do IF we made it to the finals… but we really didn't have time to prepare anything special. We had guests coming in from out of town that same weekend, and Abe was out of town too. I was swamped.

The day of the event came. Tyson, Jordan and Mariah performed "Glorious" beautifully. When they finished, I trembled as I watched the people rise to their feet. They were the only ones to receive a standing ovation the entire evening! Jackson did an awesome job drumming on his set and received a great applause after his rock session. :-)

They announced those who would go to the finals round, and Tyson, Jordan and Mariah were selected from their song, "Glorious." I immediately grabbed them and ran outside to prepare them for a second number. They knew lots of songs from church that they had been singing their entire lives, so we created a quick medley of "A Child's Prayer" and "I am a Child of God."

I told the children that they would NOT win first place because there were some highly talented children performing. Instead, we huddled as a family and asked God for HIS Spirit so that we would be able to touch hearts.  

I sat nervously through the performances waiting for my little ones' turn. We had only talked about what they would do on stage and quickly sang through the songs. These songs were so simple and basic that I wondered how this could this match their first number?

Their hope was to share God's light.

Mariah stood alone in the center of the stage and sang in acapella the first part of "A Child's Prayer."

Heavenly Father, are you really there?
And do you hear and answer ev'ry child's prayer?
Some say that heaven is far away, 
But I feel it close around me as I pray.
Heavenly Father, I remember now
Something that Jesus told disciples long ago:

"Suffer the children to come to me."
Father, in prayer I'm coming now to thee.

She knelt down for the final words "Father in prayer I'm coming now to thee."

Her brothers then entered the stage from both sides and knelt by her side as they sang with her these words:

Pray, he is there; 
Speak, he is list'ning.
You are his child; 
His love now surrounds you.
He hears your prayer; 
He loves the children.
Of such is the kingdom, the kingdom of heav'n.

Then all three children rose up together holding hands as they sang in strong voices, "I am a Child of God."

  1. I am a child of God,
    And he has sent me here,
    Has given me an earthly home
    With parents kind and dear.
  2. Lead me, guide me, walk beside me,
    Help me find the way.
  3. Teach me all that I must do
    To live with him someday.

    It was simple, and it was beautiful.
They announced the winners, starting with third place. We cheered for everyone and then looked around the room as they prepared to announce the 1st place winner. There was a drum roll… Everybody sat quietly. First place would receive a significant cash prize. We waited and smiled at all the contestants… then they announced, "The Mills Family!!" What an absolute surprise and joyful time for my little performers. They received their prize and smiled for pictures. Then they returned to their seats.

After the entire show was over, my children were still sitting in their seats when a lady approached them with tears in her eyes. She said, "I just want you to know how much you touched my heart." Wow! That was the best part of the day. That was EXACTLY what we prayed for. We wanted to touch hearts. Not only did God allow the children to win the entire contest from singing songs about HIM, but HE allowed them to touch hearts in the process… for that was their truest desire… to touch hearts.

In a day and age where there is so much emphasized on big, spectacular presentations, the audience and the judges were touched by the Holy Ghost as the children shared a humble and eternal message from God. 

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

A Year of Faith: Happy Anniversary!

Today, Abe and I have been married for 14 years!!

On our 12-year anniversary, I wrote about our story of how we met. :-) If interested, the link is below:


This past year-and-a-half, among other struggles, we have struggled financially. Abe has been working jobs all over the country. He has worked as a salesman and has sold just about everything possible in the past year: roofing, alarms, TV, solar panels, outdoor kitchens, etc. He left for weeks at a time and wasn't at church with us even once for 4 months straight because of his travels. He missed almost all of the kids' football/cheer games… for not nearly enough pay. He never panicked. He just continued to work hard.

Miracle at Walmart

Last fall, I ran into Walmart to get some fruit and some crackers for my children for lunch before I had to race them back to their afternoon classes. When I got to the checkout, I realized I didn't have enough money for everything. I only bought the crackers and ran like a crazy woman around Walmart returning everything else.

Meanwhile, my kids were in the car waiting for me with my phone. They answered a phone call from a friend of mine. She told them that she was right by Walmart and wanted to give us some things. This friend who called me had NO IDEA that I had just returned my groceries. In fact, once I returned to my car, I was trying to call her back to tell her I didn't have time for a visit. Before I could connect with her, she pulled up right behind me in the parking lot. She came running out with a bag of Clementine oranges- just like the ones I had sadly returned to Walmart only moments before.

That was an absolute miracle, and I knew it. Who randomly gives oranges to somebody in a Walmart parking lot? How did she know I had gone shopping but had to leave with only some crackers… wishing I had enough money for the fruit too? She didn't know…. but the Lord knew and inspired a friend to remind me that God was and is aware of every tiny moment in our lives. What a sweet gift from a kind friend following God's direction…

This morning I was reading in Matthew chapter 14 when Jesus walks on water.

When the disciples saw HIM walking on water, they feared that HE was a spirit, and Jesus said to them in verse 27: "...Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid." Peter also began to walk on water towards Jesus…

verses 30-31: "But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried, saying, Lord, save me.. And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?"

Like Peter, I sink when I doubt. I have to make a conscious effort to not doubt that HE will stretch forth his hand when I need it.

The gift of the clementines alone is reason enough for me to remember that principle and to have faith in HIS plan for me.

I certainly learned a tremendous amount of faith this past year…

The Flooded Car

The tests of faith continued…

One morning a few months ago, it had been raining hard all night long. Abe was driving Jackson to church at 5:30 am for his early morning seminary class. He was 1 block away from the church, and the street was dark still when he hit a deep puddle. Abe tried to drive faster through the puddle when he realized how deep it was, but his car stopped… and nothing he did could get it started again.

Abe called me as the water rose almost to his car door. Needless to say, his car was destroyed. So here we were, with 6 kids who each had a million activities they needed to be at while Abe was trying to work extra jobs that all required a vehicle… In fact, one day Abe walked 8 miles back from a job because he didn't have the heart to tell me he needed a ride. When I finally found him, he was waving his white towel in the air… I couldn't help but laugh at the sad sight of my weary, sweaty husband…I knew that this too was part of our trial… this was our "boisterous wind," and we were determined to maintain our faith.

The Lord truly did take care of us through our financial struggles. A couple of wonderful friends gave Abe some side jobs: clearing out homes, DJing, and voice lessons. One friend gave me a job to tutor her daughter in reading. Another friend gave me a job to teach her daughter piano. A neighbor gave me a job to make banana bread for his entire office- and he paid me generously. :-) We were making it inch by inch and were truly learning how to trust Jesus and not to "sink."

The Lord Stretched Forth HIS Hand in a MARVELOUS Way!!

Abe applied for a job a couple of years ago while we still lived in Michigan. This particular job seemed like the perfect job. He would be presenting leadership training principles to large companies and organizations. He would be using his public speaking skills on a regular basis. He prepared a presentation and was interviewed by Skype, but he didn't get the job. In fact, the interview ended in a way that Abe felt like they even wondered why he would be applying for such a job.

A few weeks ago, Abe received a phone call out of the blue from the same company on a Monday asking him if he was still interested in applying for that job. What? Two years later? Abe, of course, said he was!

They flew him to California two days later. Thursday he auditioned live in front of the owners of the company, and he was offered the job that very same day.

He started training that following Monday- exactly one week from the initial phone call.

He is teaching principles that he firmly believes in and is working with men and women who have a deep faith in God. He will be home every weekend for the kids' activities and for church. We receive full benefits starting April 1st without any out-of-pocket expenses.

We are still in shock. How did this happen? One minute we were wondering where each and every dollar was coming from, and within one week Abe was working his dream job.

I am grateful to be married to a man with whom I can struggle, find faith, and experience joy into the eternities. What a beautiful challenge this life is. We are not perfect. We make mistakes. We have committed to stay together; and because of that mutual determination and faith in God, we have overcome great challenges.

Thank you, Abe, for trying so hard, for loving and teaching our children, and for using all that God has given you to give us a beautiful life of learning and of love. Thank you for loving God. Thank you for living with passion and heart.

Thank you for loving me and for believing in me and in us.


(Abe's drinking sparkling grape juice by the way. :-))

Saturday, March 21, 2015

I am a New Creation

One of my readers from my blog reached out to me during my months of silence while I wasn't writing. She asked if I would like to do a Bible study program with her.

She didn't know why I wasn't writing in my blog, but she continued to share her scriptures and testimonies of Jesus. I gave what I thought were "very valid reasons" for not responding. I thought I was just too busy. Finally, I had a day to respond to her emails. I sat at my computer and tried, but then I cried and walked away. I tried again and turned away again.

I realized that I couldn't write because my heart hurt too much… I hurt because of choices of others, but I was allowing myself to slip away from my closeness to my Savior. I felt myself slipping away from who I was. I was  subconsciously pushing away the small acts that would bring me the greatest healing. I wasn't opening my heart...

I still read my scriptures everyday and prayed everyday, and that pulled me through the dark hours. However, my heart was boarded up pretty tight.

I never lost my testimony, I was just hurting too deeply and wasn't ready for God's healing  yet… but her testimonies of Jesus kept me on the edge of accepting HIS healing… until I was ready to fully embrace Jesus' healing love into my heart. Through that time, I greatly appreciated, not only her nonjudgmental way of reaching out, but also her efforts to share her testimony regularly. 

(Actually there were several of you who reached out with tremendous love at truly divinely appointed times. I will be writing about that miracle next week.)

She and I continue our Bible study, and this week she shared something beautiful… We were reading in John chapter 2 when Jesus turned the water into wine. She pointed out that it was a miracle of creation. These are just a portion of her words:

"How I apply this to my life is to look at myself as a new creation since anyone who is united with the Anointed One, is a new creation. My old life is gone and a new life began when I believed in HIM."

She also quoted 2 Corinthians 5:17

17 "Therefore if any man be in Christhe is a new creature:old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new."

All of a sudden it hit me. I had been looking at my soul as a stitched up, ripped piece of fabric. I had been accepting my new self as something uglier but stronger. However, God was actually creating me into a new, stronger, more beautiful peace of fabric.

I pondered greatly about myself as a new creation. I went to our temple in Orlando yesterday and felt that newness in full force. God was restoring all the love, forgiveness, and peace I once had when I was fully embracing HIM… when I was "in Christ."  I had never let go of Christ, but I hadn't been fully embracing ALL of CHRIST.

We came home after dark last night, so we went straight to bed.

This morning, I discovered that some of the seeds we had planted only a few days ago were beginning to sprout!! I watched as each of the children walked outside and excitedly exclaimed their joy over the same discovery. 

There is something so special about seeing the green leaves pushing their way through the dark dirt. 

The creation of the garden was beautiful to all of us, and the newness of it filled my soul once again… 

I sat beside my little garden and read my scriptures. I happened to read in Matthew where Jesus speaks of the seeds that are planted in good soil. I felt the Spirit burning within my soul. I knew I was planted in good soil because of the teachings of Jesus Christ that my parents gave to me. I knew my children were being planted in good soil as well, and I thanked God for the creation of the new, little seeds sprouting right beside me representing that goodness. The symbolism of it touched me deeply. 

I thanked God for this friend who reminded me that I am a new Creation. I thanked God for the temple and for the newness I felt within those doors. I thanked God for HIS almighty power to CREATE MIRACLES. I am grateful HE can create me into someone greater in HIM.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

No Inhibitions!!

Yesterday was a beautiful day. I felt pure joy watching my children interact at the beach. Tyson and Mariah surfed together, and Juliana and Jayden were clearly exploding with joy!

What freedom!
What joy!
What love!

Yesterday the children and I did 3 miles of sprints/jogging. As we were finishing our mile running up and down our street, Jackson arrived home on his bike cheering us on as he rode past us.

Jackson had just finished running 4 miles at track practice and then rode his bike 9 1/2 miles home. He went straight inside after he arrived. As we turned around for our final stretch back to the house, Jackson came back outside carrying a table, speakers with energizing music blasting, a pitcher of Gatorade, and a stack of glasses for us. Oh my goodness! How sweet!

I really was beat. (Tyson clearly was too!!) We all had red faces! I hadn't run sprints that fast in years, and my legs felt as if they were going to crumble at any moment. Seeing that sweet Jackson with his Gatorade stand made me finish harder.

As Juliana and Jayden danced their hearts out to the music, Jackson smiled and said, "This is what they do for the runners after the big races."

I realized that Jackson probably would have loved to have had a glass of Gatorade waiting for him after his long bike rides home. Instead of wishing I had done it for him, he took that knowledge and did it for us instead.

In our nighttime devotional, we all talked about the Golden Rule:

Matthew 7:12 "Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them:  for this is the law and the prophets."

Jackson displayed a perfect example of that, and it blessed us all.

I thought about this further…. What keeps me from having that childlike heart? What keeps me from rolling in the sand? What keeps me from setting up a Gatorade stand? I think it's those darn inhibitions!!

Some of my favorite memories of my mom growing up were the moments when she cast all those inhibitions to the wind! I remember her putting on fairy wings and dancing, leaping, and bounding through the house like a fairy!!  Oh we all laughed so hard.

There are a lot of serious sadnesses in this life. There really are. Sometimes they crush us to pieces… and we need to take that time to mourn… but our entire lives do not need to be in that state of mourning. I feel like the older we get, the more pains we hold onto. I want to spend more time freeing my spirit so I can enjoy the vibrance of life that God put into our souls when we were born!!

I mean… why not wear glitter hats and spend time kissing and chillin' with bunny rabbits? (Also part of the activities in one day.:-))

What a life this is and what a life it can be!!!  
…even for us old folks!!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Last Night's Bolivia Miracle

I had a really cool experience last night, but it started with my trip this summer:

I traveled to Bolivia with 19 teenagers this summer. As a group we built a school for the children in Santa Cruz.

Fourteen years ago, I served as a missionary for a year and a half in Bolivia. I spent about 10 months of that time in the city of Cochabamba. Last summer, we traveled to Cochabamba to see the Christus and to go to the temple. We only had 2 partial days and one night in Cochabamba.

 I was so excited to return to the area where I truly learned how to love and how to trust my Savior. I knew I wouldn't have time to visit all the people I grew to love because my time was to be spent with the youth, but I planned a meeting at a restaurant with a special family that had touched my heart deeply during my time as a missionary. The father, (Osvaldo) the mother (Mary) and 2 of their children (Fabricio and Danielito) would be coming.

My heart was pounding all day. Was this real? I pondered about our relationship:  I remembered as a missionary, I was walking through a big outdoor market with thousands of people everywhere in the streets when Mary came running to me. She told me she had a special feeling run through her body, and she knew I was somewhere nearby. She turned around, and there I was. (Our hearts were deeply connected.)

I sat at the restaurant waiting anxiously for our reunion. I walked around the restaurant looking into people's faces trying to see if they were my friends from so long ago. I hadn't seen them for 14 years, so I wondered if I would recognize them right away. I took several deep breaths, decided to go back to my seat and prayed for the Spirit to be with me.

I walked around the corner and burst into tears. Osvaldo was sitting at our table. Mary came next and I cried even harder as I wrapped my arms around her. Mary was never baptized, but Osvaldo was.  However, Mary stood and told the teenagers of the special bond that we held and how the teachings of Jesus had influenced their lives greatly and saved their marriage… I continued to sob.

We took lots of pictures and made plans to meet on the temple grounds the following morning.

That night I sat in my bed and cried uncontrollably for a couple of hours. I just couldn't stop!!  I didn't know why I was crying so hard! I think it was just so real to me. My time as a missionary was in such a different place and with such a different way of living that at times it felt like a dream… but here they were… real people… living beautiful lives… and every bit of our love for each other was just as strong. What a blessing. The emotions ran so deeply that, physically, I didn't know how to handle them.

As I met the following morning with Osvaldo and Mary, I discovered that their oldest son, Kchito, was in Orlando working for the summer. He would need a place to stay for a few weeks when he finished. I excitedly told him how close we live to Orlando, and we made plans to have him in our home. Wow!

What are the chances that I would see Osvaldo and Mary in Bolivia after 14 years and then return to the US and have their son in my home less than a week later? Well… it absolutely had nothing to do with chance. It was all completely in the Lord's planning.

Our time with Kchito was inspiring and moving! Our children fell in love with him. He went EVERYWHERE with us. He even participated in the girls' tea parties. :-)

He too was never baptized, but he learned so much more about Jesus while he was here in our home. In fact, the day before he left, he was giving beautiful devotionals to the family on Jesus. As we said goodbye to him at the airport, he stood in the parking lot and asked if he could offer a prayer.

As a missionary, having taught him as a small boy so many years ago, I sobbed again seeing that he had turned into such a kind, loving man. My heart was so full of love and every good emotion you could imagine! The Spirit was there in full force!

My Miracle Last Night

Last night, I was thinking about some opportunities I had been given. I began to pray about them, and all of a sudden I felt the Lord tell me to follow my heart more.

As I age, I fall into the trap of using my brain too much; and in the name of being responsible, I cut out the experiences that are the most life-changing. Recognizing this, I began to think about the most amazing experiences we have had as a family… hmmm… those were the times that I followed my heart without hesitation.

I began to ponder and pray about the things that made my heart pound with excitement. Very strongly, thoughts of Bolivia and this sweet family came to me. Those thoughts came so strongly that I even looked up flight information to go there! I didn't know how we would pay for it, but the thought came… so I took steps in that direction.

After assessing the cost of making a trip to Bolivia as a family, I prayed again about what it was that the Lord wanted for our family… and how to do it!

I was just about to go to sleep, and I decided to go onto Facebook to check my messages. I hadn't been on for a few days. The first thing I saw was a message from Mary!!!  I hadn't heard from her in several months. She had been so moved by her oldest son's experience in our home, that she wanted to feel and experience the same thing. She asked if she could come to our home at the end of March and stay until the middle of June!!  She would be coming with her own money… etc, etc. She merely wanted the experience.

She had tried to come here before, but Visa, money and work problems held her back. I figured it wouldn't happen for several years, so I was completely shocked at this message!

I immediately wrote her back and told her how the Spirit had just spoken to me about them. I knew this was inspired of God, and we gladly welcomed her into our home!

Wow!! That is all I can say!!! Wow!! When we are willing to listen to the Lord's direction, amazing experiences truly do come our way! The Lord is constantly working in our lives and speaking to us. He wants us to feel joy within our souls and to feed those righteous passions and desires. HE is the one who put those righteous passions and desires into our hearts!!

Where will this experience lead us? I don't know, but I'm willing to find out. :-) It just feels so good to have divine communication… I want to make more efforts to listen with my heart.

The Mission Call

The other miracle… My nephew, not the one who went with me on the trip, but a nephew from another family, received his mission call to Santa Cruz, Bolivia and is leaving in about a week! He did not request or choose this location, but he's just as thrilled as we are!

My heart is just so full I can't even stand it! :-)

I know that it is no coincidence that my nephew, Nathan, would be called to serve in the exact same city, out of all the places in the world, where my other nephew, Cade, and I served this summer. I can't wait to see what miracles unfold. Again, I'm sooo willing to trust God and find out!

Monday, March 16, 2015

Birthday Boy JayJay

Baby JayJay turned 3 yesterday!!

Jayden is truly one of a kind!! He's his own man doin' his own thang!! Strangers everywhere stop to watch him because he is so funny. He doesn't just walk by people… he dances and shakes and hollers his greetings to everyone in his path. 

We sure love this fireball of energy!! He energizes and exhausts me all at the same time… and I wouldn't have wanted him to come any different than the way he is!!  What a blessing and a miracles he is in our lives!! I have written a couple of blogs in the past about how he came to us… how grateful we are!!

Enjoy the Pictures!! The truth is, every moment of his life is a Kodak moment!:)

A few neighbors came over last night to eat pizza and cake and to sing to our little Jayden. Our oldest guest turns 90-years old this year! Yep, Jayden has friends of all ages. 

I love you my baby JayJay!!