Tuesday, May 26, 2009

This is the cross-stitch I just finished. It took over a year to do, but was well worth it! We gave it to some dear friends. :o)

Noah's New Toy! :o)

Noah saved up his money to buy this new toy!
It goes up to 38 mph. on our acreage.
Nathan is saving up for something bigger...a car!
He'll be 16 in December! :o)

Oasis in the Country

Psalm 107:1
Give thanks to the Lord for He is good; His love endures forever.
1 Thess. 5:18
...give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.
As I was sitting on the front porch this morning and enjoying the coolness in the air and hearing the rumble of thunder in the near distance...a sense of gratitude and contentment washed over me...so did the idea of our house being and "oasis in the country."
Many of you know that our large family of 12 has followed Dave Ramsey's advice of "live like no one else, so you can live like no one else!" Meaning, you may look crazy by the way you are living by the world's standards while you are working on paying off debt, but in the end, you'll be the one sitting pretty when your debt is paid off! How are we following his advice? By working diligently to pay off our non-mortgage debt. We haven't borrowed money (no loans, no credit cards) in 3 years! We are living like no one else, because we are a family of 12 (with the exception of our oldest son who is no longer at home) living in a 3-bedroom, manufactured home.
My husband and I finally started listening to God as He was condemning us for our non-mortgage debt. All our married lives we had debt! To make a long story short, we were finally feeling convicted about it. We looked at all the interest we were (and still are) paying each month . We were saddened to think about what that money could be used for (the Lord's work, blessing others, giving our children more opportunities to do things). So, we sold our big 5-bedroom house and moved to our "Oasis in the Country" 2 years ago. That's not what I would've called it 3 years ago (you don't want to know how I would have referred to it)! Just to tell you how far I've come in a couple of short years, if my husband had suggested we move into this little house then, I would've said he was crazy and he would've had to bring me here kicking and screaming!
All that to say, I could be discontented and wish we had more bedrooms, a bigger kitchen, nice trees, and the list could go on forever! However, I know that we are in the middle of God's will and that by making sacrifices and working hard, we will see our debt paid off before we know it! I also know that our children are learning from our mistakes and at least they'll be able to say "my parents made the mistake of getting into debt, but they worked hard to get out of it," instead of "my parents got in debt and stayed there." It is fun to see the debt going down and we celebrate small milestones as we go along.
It's not easy and I am very tempted to be discouraged and ungrateful sometimes, but when I remember "...give thanks in all circumstances," that helps me keep my eyes on the Lord and to be grateful for all He has provided. It also helps me be so grateful for my dear husband Don and for his obedience to the Lord in this...and, I am so grateful for all of our children who are such blessings...nothing else really matters.