Dear, Dear Prayer Warriors,

We awoke this morning after a very nice night of sleep to the blood-curdling screaming of the little boy next door to us. Oh my. It went on and on and on and on. I was almost to cry laying here in the darkness of our room. Then I heard him screaming, “I want my daddy.” I just about lost it. I was envisioning nurses all around him trying to put in an IV or something horrible. Finally, when I could take it no longer, I got up, brushed my hair, put on my parent name tag and glasses, and walked to their doorway. I had looked all around our room for something to take him, but I had nothing that I thought a little guy would like. Anyway, I got to their door and it was open. The mom was in the bed with the litte boy, and I said, “Are you okay?” She actually smiled and said, “He wants ice cream.” I guess they had woke him up to give him medicine and then he couldn’t have anything to eat for a certain amount of time. I smiled and said, “Just checking…I was worried.” THen I came back to tell Nick, because he was awake and wondering what was going on too. Shew…….reminds me to be thankful for all of the mornings I wake up at home with the biggest stress being “what should I wear today” or “what’s for breakfast.”

My mind has been racing this morning with so many things I wanted to share from this week and haven’t had time.

First, I have to tell you about Monday morning. See, I had made a list of ALL things I needed to do before we came to Columbus. Adding Nick’s room makeover to the list added even more things. And then there were things I needed to do for our dogs, too (go to the vet for frontline, get peppy’s hair cut, etc.) Why would anyone with 5 kids have 2 dogs? I’m still wondering about that….just kidding, my kids love our dogs. Anyway, my mind was spinning as I backed out of our driveway, and as usual, I was trying to do two things at once. I had called Robin Waggoner to find out what time I was suppose to be at Olive Hill Christian Church to speak that night for their ladies’ banquet (I had already made the commitment and just couldn’t let them down) and as I was on hold at Prichard waiting for her to answer in her classroom, I continued backing up and the next thing I knew I heard the horrible sound of “CRUNCH” as I backed right into our son, Evan’s, car. I looked into my rearview mirror and there it was…..the top of his white car smack dab behind me. I pulled forward a bit and just leaned my head on the van seat and thought, “I am going to have a nervous break down.” When Robin answered, I blurted out, “I just hit my son’s car” before I even told her who was on the phone. When she realized it was me, she was so sweet and said, “You just have too much on our mind.” We talked for a minute, because I was so upset I had started to cry. Then I asked if she would stay on the phone with me while I looked at the cars. As I got out of the van, I could hear Robin praying on the phone. I walked to the back of the van and I couldn’t believe it! There was not even a scratch on Evan’s car or my van. I heard the crunch but I couldn’t see any signs of even dust being moved. I was in shock. Robin was so happy! Maybe when I pulled forward the fender bounced right back into place, or maybe God pulled out the dent, I don’t know. All I know is that I was spared from a day of insurance and car repairs. I told Robin one of my favorite verses was in Isaiah where is says, “he makes the rough places smooth” and now I was going to think of that with my car!!!! I drove to wal-mart with shaking hands but a thankful heart..I felt so covered in grace. Then as things unfolded with Nick this week……things like some email confusion with getting the gene-testing done and the realization of Nick’s tumor having spread out a bit….I kept thinking back to God making the rough places smooth for me in a very real way in our driveway. I have thought so many times this week of how thankful I am that I backed into Evan’s car. I believe that that was no accident. I believe that God was showing me in a very literal sense just how amazing it is to serve a God who can make the rough places smooth. He was preparing me in an earthly way for the message I needed to hear in a spiritual way. I guess I tell you that to say that if things aren’t perfect in your life, it may be that God is going to use the earthly trouble to speak to you about spiritual things, so listen as you wait! Listen and learn! I believe our God is bigger, wiser, and more purposeful than we could ever imagine! He didn’t just create us and then leave the world to spiral out of control. Yes, things are not so good on this planet, but this planet is not a forever thing. The end is coming, and in the end, it is just our relationship with Him that will last. So, I pray for you that you will seek Him and find Him with all of your heart.

Second, I have had several people ask about Olivia, because I haven’t sent any updates on her. I took her to Shriners in Lexington last week (the day after Nick’s MRI). Brenda Newland drove us, and that helped me so much. I really didn’t want to go, but I knew I needed to keep the appointment. Anyway, her spine looked better, so the doctor didn’t want to check her scoliosis again for 9 months. However, her bloodwork was positive (ANA) and her wrist continues to be puffy and extremely sore from time to time, so I take her back to Shriners a week from yesterday to see their pediatric rheumatologist. I feel silly asking for prayer about so many things, because I start feeling like everyone is going to think our family is crazy or something. The truth is, “Our family is under attack by the devil.” I pray and I need to pray even more that God would be a hedge of protection around our family. In many ways, He has, so I never want to seem like I am complaining. I am very thankful for so much. But please remember Olivia in your prayers too when you can.

Third, yesterday afternoon Tim drove back to Grayson to watch Olivia and Todd in the choir/band concert. He videotaped it for us. He also was suppose to go to an awards ceremony on MainStreet because Olivia had written a letter about why he should be “father of the year” and she was in the top five finalists! They couldn’t make it to the ceremony, though, because it was at the exact time that Olivia was singing in the debut of the Carter Co. Children’s Choir. Later in the night, Tim texted me and said, “Call Olivia and see how she did.” When I called and asked, she told me that dad had WON Father of the Year!!!!!!!!!!!! I was so excited for him and for her. But then Olivia said, “You don’t know how mad I am.” She really wanted to be at the awards ceremony. She said, “Everyone would have been so proud of me.” I tried to explain and so did my mom that we WERE proud of her, and then she cracked me up when her next comment, in a very grumpy voice, was, “Don’t even try to make me feel better.” I told her she needed to go bed! She sounded so grumpy. Anyway, I say all that to say this………..Feeling better is a choice, isn’t it? Olivia was determined to be mad and stay mad. I just felt in my heart that I needed to share that thought with anyone who is struggling with anger or bitterness or jealousy or whatever…….if we get to the point where we are saying, “Don’t even try to make me feel better” we probably need to do some serious soul-searching. I am praying for all who read this and need help in that area. I have been there….it is not fun.

Fourth, please pray for Nick’s swelling. He has a special visitor coming around 9 and I want him to be able to see them. I’ll email after the visit happens.

I love you all so much. Thanks for allowing me to release my thoughts. It helps me.

Your prayers are getting us through!


Is. 42:16
I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them.