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Old 04-05-2009, 06:39 PM   #231
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Reisterstown, Maryland
Posts: 28,304

Sunday, April 5, 2009 7:19 PM, CDT

Good Sunday evening,

Some days my thinking cap doesn't work..I can't come up with anything meaningful or creative in my mind to help me through a situation or circumstance. Other days, my mind won't quit and I can't stop it from producing constant thoughts...thoughts that flow faster than the waterfalls at Niagara that cascade over the edge. It's days like that (today, for instance) when I don't seem to get much done, physically productively speaking, as I my mind is so active. I have yet to find an on/off switch for it...someone forgot to wire it with a control panel. So that is why some journal entries are strong in meaning and others are just informational. I try to write both when I can.

I use this CaringBridge site for more than just a venue to keep everyone up to date on Sicily's journey, it's my megaphone, soap box, therapy session, and record keeping book all rolled up in one. Some day, when Sicily is older, she will be able to read every word that is written and know how she was cared for by many, many people. I also hope she can see how this was a journey of faith for all involved. I've come to the realization that having faith takes work and effort. To some lucky few it comes easily and naturally...they were born with the ability to have it, share it, spread it, keep it and live each and every day by it. They truthfully "walk by faith and not by sight!"

Others, faith is a day to day work in progress. Some days it can be strong and conquering, and on other days it's meek and wavering. To be completely honest, I fit into the latter category. I wish I was the former, but faith is something I have to work at. But I do work at it! I also believe that having faith is a decision that has to be made...I choose to have faith. Some people walk around expecting that an apple will fall from a tree, hit them on the head, and "whola"...they now have faith. That may happen to some, as well, but for many of us, faith is work to have and to keep. And knowing that I have to work at it day by day keeps me aware of my personal fluctuations. Those days when my faith is higher than a mountain top is when I need to share it more, and on those days when I feel lower than the ground the ants walk on is when I need to ask others to share theirs with me. Isn't that how life is in general? Those who have, should give, and those who need, should ask. And we can't be so narrow minded to only surround ourselves with those whose faith is unabiding. We need to be around others whose faith is non-existent so that they, too, may learn about faith and what it can do for them by how it has helped and sustained us.

Case in point, spending what little time I did around the Travis family has been humbling to me. This is a family that serves as missionaries to God. They've traveled to India and plan to return soon, hopefully with Esther. They will return, non-the-less, however Esther's story plays out. Being around them has made my faith barometer I said before, it's contagious. But I also recently watched, from the outside and at a distance, as one mother's faith dwindled at the loss of her precious daughter. It hurt to see and feel her pain and frustration...but also made me pose the same baffling questions to God as she did..."WHY? HOW COULD HE?" But that is when I've learned that by surrounding myself with others whose faith is intact, they will carry me through the times when the questions arise.

Just like the "Footprints in the sand" poem. When there was only one set of prints was when we were being carried. And that's okay to need to be carried from time to time, as long as we sometimes are the ones who are the carriers, as well! I truly think that God doesn't expect us to be straight arrows when it comes to our faith relationships. He gives us perilous situations that are meant to test our faith, and by being tested, we learn and grow in our faith relationship with Him. Some tests are harder than others...some are down right unbearable. But like little Esther says, "Win or lose, give God the glory!" This out of the mouth of a six year old girl battling a very painful and draining war with cancer. Amazing. I truly see the face of Jesus in this little girl. I believe she was sent to earth as one of God's angels to teach each and every one of us a lesson in faith. She is teaching...we are learning. Even those who have never met her and never will, are learning incredible lessons from her. Again, amazing...that's about the only word I can come up with each time I think of her.

Webster's definition of the word amaze - to fill with wonder or surprise; to astonish. Enough said! So, if you're sitting on a mountain top of faith right now, go "amaze" someone...if you are crouched down in the soil sinking with each burden that is about to bury you... "ask, and it shall be given to you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and he who seeks, finds; and to him who knocks, it shall be opened." Luke 11:9-10

With ALL that being said, (sorry for the rambling) Sicily is doing great. We have so many people ask us how we get through all of this, and that's why I sat down to explain how, personally, I can do this. Sicily still manages to make all of us around her who are watching her and caring for her smile with pride and satisfaction at how well she handles her situation! As so many kiddos do. I will sign off for now. My mind is actually worn out, surprising, huh? Goodnight and God bless!

Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don't worry; God never blinks.
America will only be the land of the free so long as it is the home of the Brave
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