Archive for Faith

Drive Gone Bad (Then Re-routed!)

I was driving around town with my husband. I was really excited about this morning. For weeks, my husband has been gone EVERY day. But today the kids didn’t have school and we were able to go and get out for a little bit. Now Joe gets out every day, but I don’t. I am home EVERY day. So I was very excited to just get out and explore and talk with each other.

But then my husband got some bad news early into our adventure, and this put him in a bad mood. I challenged him and said, “Are you going to be in a bad mood all day?” (Most people when asked this would say, “No, but since you put it that way, YES!”)

No response.

Wives listen up! Here is how my thought process went…

Well, then I will just have to have fun with out you. I don’t need you. I can go out by myself. I can have a life with out you. I don’t need you to make me happy.

I was rather hurt that here we finally had some time together and he was grumbling about how awful his life was. For women this translates, “…how awful my life with you is…”

This little conversation went on for a couple of minutes in my head.

Oh the things I could do…without you.

Then I had a realization…

This is how people end up divorced.

  • “We grew apart.”
  • “We have nothing in common.”
  • “We’re not in love anymore.”

I reigned in my pity party. This isn’t about me. My husband needs my support. He just got some terrible news. He has every right to be upset. There will be other days to go out and explore and have fun. Be supportive. It isn’t about me. And that is what love is about…

Love is not self seeking.

After a little bit, his smile came back, and we had a nice time out. Thank goodness I didn’t listen to that little voice.

What about you? Do you pull away from your spouse because you think you’re not important or needed? Do you plan ways to “get away”? Or maybe your trying to get even. What way can your put your needs aside and be there for your husband or wife? Look up 1 Corinthians 13:4. Are you loving your spouse?

Comments (6) »

Where You Lead

I was talking with someone the other day about my posts on adoption. She gave me some advice about adoption. She told me how you should never adopt a child older than your youngest child. It is detrimental to the birth order. Statistics have shown this to be damaging to children.

I kind of stared at her blankly.

While I agree that this is true, I don’t know that it pertains to our situation.

If you are trying to increase your family size and add children into your family, I agree…don’t adopt children into your family older than your youngest.

If your son’s best friend is in serious need of a loving home environment, please do not inform him, “Sorry, you are older than our youngest child, so you need to live in your harmful home or on the streets.”

If God has put a child in your life and He has told you, “Adopt this child as your own.” Do not tell that child, “Sorry your too old.”

I need to make something perfectly clear…

We are not seeking to adopt. We are only keeping our hearts open to having other people’s children in our daily lives. This may mean feeding a neighbor child pancakes for dinner.

Or cheering for a football team that we don’t have any children on. Or maybe someday, it might mean having a child into our home who doesn’t have a safe place to sleep. I really don’t know.

All I know is that we are saying to God, “Where you lead us, Lord, we will follow.”

What paths do you not follow because studies have shown, or statistics say, or your friend says that it is not wise? What ways have you followed God in spite of what society would have you do?

Leave a comment »

Other People’s Children

One thing I strive for in my posts is transparency. My hope is that our lives will be an open book. So I need to make a confession.

I don’t always like other people’s kids.

Often times people tell me I must really love children to have so many…Well, I love children, but I don’t really like all children. Actually, I don’t always even like my own children.

I just don’t have the patience to put up with a bunch of crap. I actually consider this character flaw to be to my advantage as a mom. But it is not an advantage when dealing with other people’s children. I can’t scream at them, spank them, or give them a time out (all of which I have done to my own children). I can’t even just tell them to shut up.

Shortly after moving into our new home, a neighbor girl was coming into our house every now and then to tell me of some wrong doing that my children had done to her. After about the fifth time, I was quite exasperated and said to her, “You’r right! Since my children aren’t being very nice, I think that it would be best that they stop playing with YOU!” And I had them all come inside.

Needless to say, she ran home crying.

Yep, I am THAT evil mom.

So how does a woman who doesn’t like other people’s children welcome them into her home?

Only through God.

Comments (3) »

Adoption on My Mind

When I was a little girl, my family was friends (and still is) with a family that had one biological child and three adopted children. My family was also a foster family. I have many, many foster siblings that I have long lost touch with. I also have an adopted sister, who is no longer a part of my immediate family, but will always be very near and dear to my heart.

I also had a fascination with stories of large families…like “Cheaper By the Dozen”, “Acres of Hope”, and other autobiographies of adopted families. As I entered into marriage, both my husband and I had hoped to have a large family mostly through adoption.

But as I began having children and realized that I was extremely fertile, adoption always seemed like a distant option. The time was never right. We didn’t have the money. We didn’t have enough room. Like they say, “God’s plans are not our plans.”

And you know what…the time is still not right, and we still don’t have the money or room, but for whatever reason the desire is becoming stronger. It is no longer in the back of my mind. It is not just on my mind either. 

About 6 weeks ago, my husband texted me out of the blue and said, “I think we need to look into adoption.” How bizarre! We hadn’t talked about it for years. 

For Joe and I, we both have no desire to adopt internationally. We also don’t want to adopt an infant. Somehow I think that God would bring the right child to our family at the right time. I’m not seeking some private adoption agency. I’m not on some waiting list. But our hearts are open. And we are praying for income and a larger home for our family.

Will you join us in praying for God’s will? Will you pray that God will bring the right child(ren) to our family at the right time? Will you pray for added income for our family? Will you pray that we move to Prineville?

Did you know that if you order something through our store we get a small percentage from Amazon.com? Please consider making your next Amazon purchase through us.

Comments (1) »

By a Thread…Part 2

So some have wondered why I am angry and frustrated. Well, the short of it is that I am tired of living hand to mouth. I am worried about the debt that daily looms over our heads. I want to get ahead.

So I took my frustrations and anger to God. I realized that even though I may be “hanging by a thread“, God is completely supporting and carrying us…and that’s a great place to be.

I took my eyes off of Jesus, just like Peter did when he walked on water. God is here for us, just as He was for Peter. He never lets us fall. Never. Not once.

All we need to do is get out of the boat, and fix our eyes on Him.

Leave a comment »

By a Thread

I am unsure of what to write today. I had an idea of sharing an epiphany I had last night about the verse “suffer the little children unto me.” But I am just not feeling it.

Quite honestly I am frustrated and mad, but I can’t show it. I am hanging on by a thread…ready to be broken at any moment. One thing I try so hard to do is keep a joyful attitude. It doesn’t do anyone any good for me to be mad and upset. And It says, “Consider it pure joy whenever you face trials of many kinds.”

I could go on about the things I am mad about, but it would just make matters worse. So instead I am clinging to my Father. He will provide.

Comments (3) »

A Bug…of the Stomach Variety

Oh, for those of you who so diligently follow this blog you may have wondered why the absence for a couple of days. I have been trying to hold myself accountable to writing three blogs a week…Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

A bug has invaded JoKars Wild…a 24+ hour stomach bug.

Someone made the comment to me the other day as to how we handle sickness with a family of 10. Well, the only answer I have for that is “by the grace of God.”

When the kids were younger, I honestly don’t ever remember being so sick I couldn’t care for them, or maybe Joe was around. Earlier this year, our family was hit very hard with the flu…myself included. But it was just high fevers and complete fatigue.

This time it has been the messy, but thankfully short lived. Kira got sick first on Thursday. Azariah was next on Saturday. Nehemiah quickly followed on Saturday night/Sunday morning. Hanna and Elijah were next. Then I took a turn on Monday. And rounding us out has been Joe and Josiah on Tuesday. As I write this, I have a feeling that Michaela will be sick tomorrow or this evening (Tuesday night). That leaves only Petra who has stayed relatively healthy.

Since Kira was sick first, by the time I got sick she was well and able to help care for the little kids. I really don’t know what I would have done without her. Joe, Josiah, and Michaela were gone while I was sick, so it would have been very difficult if I hadn’t had her help. Now that I am well, I can help care for the older ones.

This situation totally reminds me of how my God cares about the little details. He knew I would need help. He knew what we needed and when we needed it. Also…and this is going to sound bad (please, don’t feel sorry for us!)…we are a little low on food. Having so many people not wanting any food is helping us get through the end of the month. (Again, please don’t sound the alarms…we are OK! There are so many people who need it far more than we do!!! We have plenty…just not what the kids want, if you know what I mean…we are not starving!)

OK, I digressed. I just wanted to say how amazed I am that God cares about all the little details. I hope that you can see that in your own life. I hope you know how much He loves and wants to know you. Start a relationship with Him…now…today.

Additional Note: I had been trying to make sure and include a picture with each post, but for the sake of all of you, I chose not to this time. Your welcome. 🙂

Leave a comment »

The Lucky Penny

After attending high school for a week or two, we discovered that Michaela was in desparate need of some clothes. An RV wardrobe is not the same as a school wardrobe. So we prayed that God would bless her with some new clothes. Then a few days later, Michaela received some money in the mail from a friend. (I really shouldn’t be surprised by such answers to prayer, but Wow! God is so good.)

So after school, I took Michaela out shopping. Being that she only had $50 and she didn’t want to pay the outrageous prices of major chain stores, we headed to some bargain/consignment stores. (We had already been to the local thrift store and found they didn’t have much.) Before going into the first store, we asked God to bless our shopping.

After going to three different stores and not having much luck, our luck changed. (No, I don’t believe in luck, but it fit with the name of the store…lol.) We were directed to the Lucky Penny. At first we were a little overwhelmed at the amount of stuff they had, but with a little searching Michaela was able to find several things to add to her school wardrobe. She got 5-6 shirts and a dress for $20! How awesome is that!

Comments (2) »

Where was I…? Oh, yeah, relationships…

If there is one thing that I can convey to you, it is the importance of relationships…a relationship with your spouse, a relationship with your children, a relationship with Jesus, and relationships with friends.

As a mom, I find it very hard to keep in close relationship with friends. As other moms can relate, it is often difficult to finish a conversation. As I have written these few sentences, I have been interrupted at least 12 times. (“Hanna put away the vacuum. It’s not a toy.”) One of the reasons I write this blog is to stay in relationship with other people. Also, I want to encourage, I want to share my heart with you. Taking care of 8 kids has made that difficult, but this blog allows that to happen. (“Kids, turn down the TV!”)

The other day I was given an opportunity to see a friend in person…I know, what a weird concept! My husband took our boys for the day, and I headed to Lincoln City, OR with Kira, Petra, Hanna, and Nehemiah. It was a 4 hour drive one way, but well worth it.

Along the way, I stopped and snapped a photo with my cell phone.

My friend and I and the kids had lunch together. We were able to talk about old times and also find out some new things. We encouraged each other. We lifted each other up.

Some might think that 8 hours of driving was not worth the few hours of time we had together. But this is what we were created for…to be in relationship with one another and God. We are supposed to be in relationship. (“Kira, can you come and get Nehemiah?”)

It isn’t always convenient. It isn’t always easy. It isn’t always even pleasurable. But I guarantee that in the end it is worth it. (“Be there in a sec to finish dinner!…”)

Leave a comment »

Pie Anyone?

With our very challenging economic times, the temptation might be to hold on to our possessions even tighter; or to buy things cheaply and store them away. But it is more important now, than ever before, that we release our things, give them away and give them away freely.

JoKars Wild has been very fortunate to have some generous people in our lives. As stated in Showers of Blessings, we have been given money and food and clothing. A couple of people have given us some extra house hold items they had…some knives and pie plates.

In our trailer we had 5 knives and one pie plate. We now have 6 pie plates and 35 knives! But even with our large family, this is way more than we need. I don’t think I would ever make more than 4 pies at a time, and we only need the one best knife for its job (carver, chopper, bread, etc)…after all I only have one hand to cut with!

So I will soon go through the pie plates and knives and pick out the ones I need. The rest will go to a local charity.

It is so important that we exercise the generosity of the people who gave me the household items, and get rid of the things that clutter our lives. We spend so much time and energy buying stuff we don’t need; that is only going to break or collect dust in a matter of days…my self included. I don’t want to go back to that. I don’t want to live that kind of life again.

Please, don’t let stuff control your life. Give your life to Jesus and let him control it.

Comments (5) »

%d bloggers like this: