We recently had a guest speaker at our church who challenged us in Sunday school to talk to God about everything.......and I mean, everything. He reminded us we are supposed to keep in continual conversation with our Heavenly Father Who already knows all, not to inform Him of anything He may have overlooked but rather to help us ask for His help at all times and with all things. This is really hard to do! I get so used to living my own life according to my own schedule and needs that I forget to include God; actually, I should be centering my life around His Will and His desires. But once in a while, I get it right. :-)
Do you ever feel a nudge from the Holy Spirit? Do you ever have a random thought pop into your head that you realize, in hindsight, came from our constant Guide? This week, on Thursday, that happened to me. I had begun class and gone through the morning routine to the point that pledges were over and we were halfway through the Bible lesson. Suddenly, I realized I had totally forgotten to take prayer requests and lead in prayer! Some great teacher I am, huh? As soon as the Bible lesson was over, I sought to rectify that error. I was already in the middle of the prayer when a thought jumped to the front of my brain: What if our class were to change, either by adding or subtracting a student? I'm sure I've had this thought before and simply let it drift away, but this time was different. I included that idea in our prayer by saying, "Lord, we enjoy being together in this class, but it is possible that someone might move away or someone else might move here and want to come to our school. Please help us make them feel welcome and a glad part of our class." I ended the prayer and moved on to the next subject, thinking no more about it. Not fifteen minutes later, our principal walked in and announced that we would be getting a new student the very next day! One of our second-grade girls' cousins were going to be attending, starting on Friday. Boy, did our mouths drop open!!! The boys who were in the classroom with me at the time were astounded as well, exclaiming about how we had just prayed that very thing and now it was to happen. Was I ever glad I had listened to the Spirit's quiet words and voiced the thought He gave me, so that my class was now prepared for a new student. She's fitting in just fine, although Friday was a little chaotic for her, having to get everything unpacked and stowed away and trying to learn our routines and schedule. We are excited to have another student in our class, and the girls are especially thrilled to have another join their ranks!
Dale is doing simply great. He is walking around more and more by himself, even at school and up/down the ramp to the portable as needed. He is gaining confidence in his ability to steady himself when he gets shaky and is losing the fear of falling. Not that he falls any less often! Thursday, approximately one hour before we were to leave for Dale's checkup at the doctor's office, Dale jerked and fell out of his chair in math class. He knocked his head pretty hard and has acquired a new red rash on his face where his cheek broke his fall, but he'll be okay. His teacher came and got me right away and that hasn't been necessary for a while, so I knew he had fallen pretty hard. When I entered the room, Dale's classmates were sitting so quietly, almost as if they were hurting along with Dale. His friend, Josiah, had moved to a seat near Dale just until the teacher came back, which seemed to me to be a nice gesture; the young lady who had been occupying that seat gladly relinquished it until Dale was able to be helped up and into his seat again. I joked with Dale about needing a seat belt just to stay in his chair, and the rest of the class grinned along with me. It must be hard on them to see their formerly energetic and crazy classmate have such difficulty with everyday life. All of the students in the junior high and high school have been so willing to help whenever Dale needs it; what a blessing that has been. It relieves me to know Dale has help when he needs it, and it takes the pressure off his older sisters so that they do not always need to be the ones to assist Dale.
The doctor visit went well; Dr. Heistand was pleased to see Dale (last visit was one year ago---imagine the change in Dale since then!) and encouraged by how well Dale is doing. He asked about Dale's education plan and was satisfied to hear that our wonderful teachers and principal are doing all they can to help Dale be at school and thrive in school. He said he'd wait to read the neurologist's report on Dale's mental progress when we go see him in a few weeks before recommending any lab work. This was good to hear, since we had already been there getting our shots (Amanda---2, Dale---2, me---1). We were more than ready to just go home and nurse our wounds!
Amanda seriously fought Chad and I over having to get the flu shot; she insists that the only time she ever got the flu was right after getting a flu shot. We won, but she didn't have to get the shot; they used the FluMist on her instead. So far, she has shown no symptoms, and for this we praise the Lord with utmost gratitude! :-\ Her birthday is today, and I really didn't want her to be ill on her 18th birthday. So far, so good!
Back to Dale---it really seems like Dale does better when he works at his own pace without the pressures of classroom life. He gets more one-on-one time when he has a question, and he absorbs the information much better. We're unwilling to pull him out of his classes just yet for two reasons: 1) We just tweaked his ed. plan to allow for less homework and more studying. We need to see how that works before making any changes. 2) Dale is thriving socially in his classes. This is not to say that he is mature socially (is any thirteen-year-old boy?), but his attitude has brightened and his go-get-'em outlook has returned since being in regular classes with his classmates and friends. Please continue to pray for Dale to improve academically and socially as well as physically and mentally. Our God is not done with Dale yet, and we've seen how our prayers affect the heart of God. Please pray with us for God's complete healing of Dale.
These next few weeks are going to be hectic. Next week is a short week because of the end of the quarter on Wednesday which results in a Teacher InService Day (no school) on Thursday, followed by the school wide Pumpkin Patch trip on Friday. The following week gives us only three and one-half days of school; we get out early on Thursday to help set up for Christian Ladies' Seminar (CLS) which will be held on Friday (no school) and Saturday. Then, we have an evangelist coming the next week or so; plus, Veterans Day and Thanksgiving break. I think I'll just scream now and get it over with.
I hope you have a good day today and a great week coming up. Remember: your God loves you because of Whose you are, not because of who you are. Take care! Love, Kirsten
I John 3:1 "Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew Him not."