Monday, April 21, 2014

God has Grown Our Family

This is the family that God so graciously blessed us with.  Family that is connected through blood.

And this, this is the family portrait God continues to paint. We are missing Maggie, Scott's lovely 6 year old.

God has brought each one of these individuals to us in a very unique way.   We met Bridget and her family at camp.  She absolutely loves children and babies so our family drew her like a magnet.  ;) Bridget started to hang around us when I became pregnant with baby number 6.  She would come over on weekends and help me with laundry, food preparation, play/craft with the children and just hung out with us.  This was all her idea and at the age of 15.  I was so impressed with this young lady!  She is a worker and would do circles around me.  We began to joke that she was our Alice from The Brady Bunch.  But Bridget was always more to us than an Alice.  She became like a daughter, dear friend and sister.

Next there was Scott.  He is a redeemed recovering drug addict who desired discipleship.  It wasn't until after a short relapse that our bond was strengthened.  Scott has a servant's heart and can't keep still for long.  He likes to team up with Bailie and clean the dishes after supper and carry in wood or any other project that Jeff needs him to do.  Scott is also very good with our children.  It can get pretty loud and crazy in our home and he seems to take it better than we do at times. ;)   Scott continues to grow in Christ every day and it is a joy to watch him surrender the past and walk forward in God's abundant grace and love.  Our relationship with Scott has become more than discipleship, he is like a brother to both Jeff and I.

Then God brought Kaleb to us.  Kaleb grew up in Guinea, Africa as a MK {missionary Kid}.  His parents and sister are still there serving.  Kaleb and his twin brother Ben have both found jobs back in the states... for now.  Ben lives with his grandparents in another state and Kaleb practically lives down the road from us. I think Sam adopted Kaleb before we did.  They are pretty good buddies.  He is learning at a young age how to handle lots of children and all the commotion that comes with a large family {he probably doesn't realize how beneficial that will be when he becomes a father}.  He too is great at helping Jeff when needed like splitting wood and working on our four wheeler and dirt bike.  Even though we have only known him for about 6 months, he is one of us!

The girls and I were at a ladies event last weekend and I sat there listening to Shannon Martin as she gave her testimony and how the Lord has grown her family in a similar way.  One thing she said that I'm still pondering, and I'll paraphrase,

"We think we know what our family portrait looks like, but when we get to heaven God could have a very different one."

How thankful we are that God dreams bigger than we do.  When either one of these family members are missing, we feel the void.  They have brought us so much joy and revealed to us a love that we didn't know was even possible.  Sure we may have to get a new septic system, but they are totally worth it!!! ;)

Disclaimer:  The septic system was inevitable and didn't have anything to do with them.  ;)


bRiDgEt said...

This makes my heart happy. I am so glad to be a part of your family and your life! I feel truly blessed by you and your family every time I step through that garage door with kids running at me yelling, "BRIDGET!!!!" Bailie's heart, Rylie's passion for cooking, LIllie's love of animals and cuddling, Jack's loud and happy voice, Sambo's sweet smiles and love for his daddy, and Maddie's giggles are all things that I look forward to encountering each time I come over.

YOU my friend, have taught me so much! What kind of mother, wife, and friend I want to be and need to strive for. You love the Lord with all your heart and I see the desire you have to please him! He is going to continue to bless you immensely because you choose to serve him daily!

I love you and our family dear friend, thank you for being you.

Nortons said...

Love this Jennie! We have so enjoyed getting to know your WHOLE family. :)