2012 has been a tough year, even though we’ve barely knocked out the first quarter.
2011 ended with both my dad and my brother in the hospital, each for separate, serious illnesses… With my uncle on the transplant list for a liver, nearing his fourth year of waiting… With one of our son’s in Afghanistan and the constant worry that entails…
“2012 can not get here soon enough” my husband and I both agreed, repeatedly, even though I felt guilty for purposely wishing even small moments of our lives away.
December 31st, Savannah and I stayed up late, drank our Mott’s sparkling cider, and watched the ball drop. Twenty-twelve had arrived!
The year started out well… Our Utah winter has been pretty much non-existent, so the days were chilly, sparkling blue skies, but no snow to drive through – in other words, perfect! Our son Josh was due to arrive home from Afghanistan before the end of the month in time for the birth of his first child, our grandson, due shortly thereafter.
January 9th I started back to school. I had decided that this was the year to get serious about finishing my degree and signed up for two classes instead of my customary one. “After all,” I told myself, “the kids are mostly self-sufficient and don’t need or have time for me…” It was time to tackle one of the two (brutal) courses I have to pass with at least a B- to get into the English program I’m working towards. And man, that first day of classes was great!
Then, the Very-Next-Day, my husband came home to tell me the dealership where he has served as a service manager was going belly-up, with absolutely no warning. There was concern he wouldn’t be paid for the past weeks he’d already worked. No prospects for job openings where he could earn even close to what he’d been making. Yada, yada, yada… Anger, tears, and whispered what-on-earth-are-we-going-to-do’s became the new norm. But there were still classes to attend and homework to do, and difficult tests to take (another blog post there!), broken plumbing, broken furnaces, sick kids to attend to, and teenage children to help through the complicated emotional minefield that is life. Plus my favorite coffee mug broke… 😦
So, yeah… 2013 was sounding better and better!
Luckily for me, God has blessed me with great friends and family. People I know, without a doubt, that I can turn to for prayer, for a listening ear, or a shoulder to cry on. People who, with small actions or a quick, kind word, (and even a new coffee mug!) brighten my whole day and let me know that everything will be okay.
“What’s your address?” my aunt asked cryptically one day, in an all too infrequent phone call. I gave it to her, definitely wondering what she was up to.
And receive one I did!
Inside was a beautiful tied quilt – all buttery yellows, royal blues, and deep purples (my favorite!).
The attached note, from the RiverLakes Community Church in Bakersfield, California, explained:
“With love, hope and prayers. Each knot represents a prayer that was said for you. “
That, of course, brought me to tears again, but these were good tears… Every day I look at it, running my hands over the silky knots, marveling again and again at the thought of all the prayers that went up on our behalf. Prayers from people who don’t even know us, from 800 miles away…
Even in the midst of all that has been happening, I know that God is taking care of us. The reminders come from seemingly-little things like a replacement coffee mug, to help from an old friend on the furnace, dinner from friends, the list goes on and on. And my prayer quilt… a gift truly wrapped in love.