Archive for December, 2009
I’m at home tonight and the house is pretty quiet. Olivia is sleeping and Jack Johnson is playing in the background over the blackness of 3am that’s coming through the windows. A small lamp lights half the room enough for me to wade through things that haven’t been touched in nearly 2 years. If you listen really closely you can hear the drops of tears falling on the wooden surface of my dresser top.
I’m going to guess that most of you are reading that expecting my tears to be for things lost. Yes, I have shed many tears for things lost…but tonight my tears aren’t for things lost at all. The tears I cry are out of an overwhelming sense of gratitude for how God is rebuilding my family; for what he is giving us, not what he has taken. See, I’m going through the remainder of Misty’s things and separating out some stuff that I know I want to keep for Olivia. Here’s what gets me though… Only a few days ago, I sat with Kristin (who I have been dating for a few months now) and she told me all the things she knew Olivia was going to really want when she gets older. Kristin, for all intents and purposes, lost her mom at age 8. A massive stroke left her unable to care for herself or even know her family. She grew up with a burning desire to know the character traits, the funny stories, the likes and dislikes, etc. of her mom. She knows exactly what Olivia will be feeling in the coming years. I’m in tears because God has brought someone into my life that could sit with me and tell me from first hand experience what will be most significant for Olivia.
Most people would think that my dating will in some way bury the memory of Misty. How incredible that God puts someone in my life that not only won’t hinder Olivia’s knowledge of Misty, but that will actually facilitate it. This was a prayer of mine. A prayer that God is answering in a way I couldn’t have imagined possible. As I see God’s hand so clearly in my life, I can’t help but be overwhelmed.
There were actually a handful of things that I put out to God as “criteria” for me to start dating. God has answered each of these very unique requests in Kristin and in more than one case, he has answered in a way that is better than I could have even dreamed. I wish I could adequately express how this feels…I guess it’s like, for the first time in many painful seasons; I’m seeing God’s hand so clearly in my life. He is so clearly making a way out of the hell we walked through toward a future of peace and joy for me and Olivia. God has brought someone into our lives that is absolutely perfect for where we are and where we are heading. And on top of that, I’m seeing that we are precisely what Kristin needs as well. And if that weren’t enough…we are totally unequivocally in love :)
I hope that your heart is happy when you read this, but I know that for a few of you this just opens a wound that struck so deeply last September when we lost Misty. I’m so sorry that this brings pain for some of you. God has really done something in my heart to allow me to be where I am right now. I’m so thankful for what he is doing for me and even more so what he is doing for Olivia. God is speaking so clearly lately; I promise to tell you more in the coming weeks.
I am not always on top of the little things in life. Like, paying bills, mowing the lawn, or putting gas in my car. A couple days back I had to steal Kristin’s jeep because it has a bit more space than my little golf cart (scion xa). I was helping my brother Justin move into their sweet new condo.
Anyway, Kristin took Olivia for a few hours but they found themselves out of gas stranded in the middle of a Walgreen’s parking lot. Luckily a few friendly folks pushed them into a spot where they decided to play pretend till the cavalry showed up with some unleaded. I’m a huge fan of voice recorders lately. I have 3 and leave them all over so I can record a little audio journal about experiences/ideas/prayers/revelations/etc. Well, Kristin saw the voice recorder in my car and decided to leave us a message. It was too cute to not post for you.
Now, I told her I was going to take a vote on who should be responsible for this mishap…but the truth is, she only drove like 3 miles and I guess I did leave a fat bag of m&ms on the dash covering the gas gauge. I’ll take the blame for this one :)
Listen to the voice message: HERE
PS- on a side note, a voice recorder (one that has a USB port so you can dump the files to your computer) is a really incredible journal tool. I keep one in my car so as I listen to audio books I can take notes without risking my life and typing the thoughts on my blackberry while driving :)
I’m excited to finally have a cut of the video to post for you all from this summer’s trip to Zimbabwe. I traveled with Ryan Keith (president of Forgotten Voices) and Steve Pilgrim (video editor extraordinaire). I had the lovely job of shooting the footage. Hope you enjoy it. Oh, and you can give money if you want…they are really great and obviously close to my heart :)
Visit them at http://forgottenvoices.org