Some would say our family has endured much this year. However; Christ has been both our Refuge and our Rock throughout. He has manifested Himself in ways we, at times, find difficult to put into words. He has allowed us to experience great tribulation as well as great joy! The year started with Phillip travelling every week for nearly four months. The weekly goodbyes were difficult. God saw fit to end that and allow a new job in Seattle. Then my best friend experienced a mini-stroke and Christ reminded me just how dear my husband truly is. A month later, we welcomed our sweet Justus in the world. He was born with Down syndrome and a heart condition. We count it such honor and joy to have this special boy within our family. The months passed and we had the opportunity to say one last goodbye to Grandma Bender before she passed in August. My children listened around her hospital bed as their grandfather told old family tales, a blessing in the face of loss. We will see her once again: for she was a believer. August also brought with it a need for me to have gallbladder surgery. I was thankful to say goodbye to the gallbladder attacks. September was the month that our sweet Justus had open heart surgery. That brought our family closer together in ways that cannot be expressed. There is nothing like facing the possible loss of a baby that will drive you and your loved ones to your knees in prayer. After nine days in the CICU, "Butter" as Justus has come to be known - was able to go home with a heart that could now allow him to thrive. The Lord worked in a mighty way in many peoples' lives through this time. Justus has truly been a vehicle for the Lord's blessings in so many ways and he is not yet eight months old. This year is coming to an end and yet is the beginning in so many ways. We are truly thankful for His provision, leading, and care for our family's health needs.
May we not forget the lessons learned this year.
Thank you Jesus for all you have wrought.