My “FORCED” restful Birthday Week!

Filed Under (Blogs) by Susan on 04-11-2017

If you have seen any Love Without Reason social media in October, you would know that on October 21, there was a fundraiser for LWR called the SHINE fashion show!  For an event of any magnitude to be successful, you need a mass of volunteers, planners, organizers, workers, idea-producers and etc!!   This event was no exception.

 

The challenge was coordinating a mission trip to Zimbabwe, planning a surgery for Philip in India in July, and returning to school and all extracurricular activities while preparing for an October event.   By the time October 21 midnight arrived, I was exhausted!!   But then I was also frightened.  I was the last person to handle both Santhosh and my phones at the event.  And I believed I had packed them in a box, and sent it with one of our friends to their home.  Unfortunately, the phones were nowhere to be found!

 

Sunday and Monday were a little frantic in trying to find our phones.  And at the same time, there was peace.  No calls to answer.  No emails to respond to.  No complaints to acknowledge (at the moment). Plus Santhosh’s reassurance to me that the phones would be found at the ChooChoo itself.    Ahhhhhhhhhhhh, peace.

 

The amazing staff at the venue for SHINE, a historic hotel called the Chattanooga ChooChoo, found the bag that had our phones in it, and then began the calls.   Monday evening we also received entrance in the RUACH 2017 conference at Redemption to the Nations Church.  One of our close friends from NYC  covered our entry tickets to the conference and demanded that we attend the events Monday to Wednesday evening.   Speakers came from around the country, just to pour into the attendants.  The worship, music, prayers and Word was like a cool drink of water after a marathon in the hot sun!

Friday we were finally able to take advantage of the “Married and Still Loving it” prize package that we won in February 2016.  The prize was a weekend getaway to the Whitestone Country Inn in Kingston, Tennessee!   As we drove the scenic highway and cut through the colorful mountains, it truly seemed like the Lord was wrapping His arms around us.   “Come apart, and rest for awhile,” He once said to His disciples.

 

Well, we did just that.  We drove through the retreat area,  walked, prayed, shared and enjoyed our time together.   It has been quite awhile since we took time for ourselves, without a coordinating mission trip, or event related to the ministry.  God knew we needed to be at a place that was known as a “sanctuary for the soul.”   It was as if the chapped skin of our souls received balm there at the Whitestone Inn.  The service, the staff, the smiles all brought rest to our wearied bodies.

 

As I look back on that week, I can’t help but think how the Lord orchestrated this time.  People on my planning team told me that God Himself hid our phones from our eyes for those 2 days.  God Himself sent us to a conference for refreshing.  God Himself arranged a weekend getaway to renew ourselves for the journey ahead.

 

Nothing is too small for God.  Even before we think our thoughts, Psalms 139 says He knows my thoughts.  My physical needs are on His radar.  Though it seems so insignificant a request, for my God, he arranges everything beautifully in His perfect time.

 

And now, ONWARD for the journey ahead!  :)

Susan

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Tennessee was whooped, and Philip laughed in Georgia’s face!

Filed Under (Blogs) by Susan on 03-10-2017

PhilFootball-youngI’m not sure when Philip started loving football.  I have a feeling something invaded his system through osmosis from this preschool       picture!! He started with just watching the games on television, then watching old documentaries and films on the internet.  The statistics and facts that are stored in his memory amazes me. (How can he NOT remember where he kept his black dress socks?!?)   He would have loved to play for the McCallie School’s football team, unfortunately for him, his pediatrician (and me, his mother) will not give clearance to play contact sports.  Philip, did not let that stop him.  He approached the head football coach and asked if he needed an assistant.  This will be Philip’s third year in a supporting/managerial role for the football team, and he loves every minute of it.

 

He has this competitive streak in him as well.  We don’t need to even mention the Baylor – McCallie rivalry!!!   It extends to the SEC and the NFL.   No one beats his Vols or his Titans and goes unscathed!!   Unfortunately, this weekend BOTH the Vols and the Titans lost!  :(  Philip - football

 

Well, after Tennessee’s horrible 41-0 loss to Georgia, we were ministering on Sunday morning at the Atlanta Revival Center in Douglasville, Georgia.   There were many in the audience who were proudly wearing their Georgia Bulldog Red and Black!!   Well, before introducing Philip to come and speak, Pastor Vance made the church announcements, one of which was a men’s retreat where they would cook “any wild meat” and treat the men in attendance.  I saw Philip suddenly sit up, perk up and smile.  My heart sank, what was going on his mind? He was introduced and his first words to the Pastor and to the church congregation was about the men’s retreat.  “So, Pastor Vance, since you will be cooking alligator and any other meat at the retreat, how about some bulldog?”    My mind immediately thought of Jesus at the temple and how he escaped the Jews who picked up stones to throw at him.  Where is the nearest fire exit?!?  This boy continued on with his testimony, and in between “With God nothing is impossible, even for the Volunteers!”

 

The congregation was generous and loving to us all, rolling in the aisles with Philip’s comments.  But boy, for a while there, I was worried for Philip!  It is amazing how the Lord can use the weak to confound the mighty.  Many may look at children with disabilities and think there is nothing good that can come out of them.  But in the Master Potter’s hands, all things are possible for those who believe!!

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#GreatAmericanSolarEclipse

Filed Under (Blogs) by Susan on 24-08-2017

Monday marked an amazing battle in the heavens with the sun and moon.  For a time, the sun disappeared and the earth became cool :)

 

According to ancient literature, people formed various reasons for why the sun disappeared from the sky.  From that, various superstitions and myths were birthed. Food that is prepared during an eclipse is unpure and poisoned, therefore, people are advised to remain fasting during an eclipse.  To some, an eclipse means disaster and destruction is imminent.  In Mexico, pregnant women are advised to wear red underwear to protect their baby from a cleft palate.

 

Devika and her mother at their home in rural Karnataka.

Devika and her mother at their home in rural Karnataka.

Beautiful girls like our patient Devika were born with bilateral cleft lip and palate.  The mother of Devika was shunned from the village after her birth.  She had told Santhosh and myself that villagers called her demon possessed, saying that she had walked out during an eclipse.

 

What a horrible burden to put on mothers.  As if we don’t carry enough guilt or pain, add on that if your baby is born with a facial birth defect, it’s because YOU stepped out during an eclipse.

 

There’s no proof, no medical science, nothing to prove any of the above.  You must protect your eyes, and that’s the medical advice to remember.  For fun, wear the red underwear, no one will check :)

 

The other thing to keep in mind is what is written in Psalms 19 “The heavens declare the glory of God, the firmament shows his handiwork.”   His glory is shown every day, with every sunrise and sunset.  But on Monday, in the USA, His glory was revealed magnificently and beautifully in the heavens.    And EVERYONE saw it!!

 

God bless you!

Susan

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