Monday, 8 October 2012

Praising God through my storm

Let me begin by saying that this blog is 100% an act of obedience.  With that being said, Praise God with me through this storm...

Last week Eddie and I found out we were pregnant...   over the weekend we lost the baby.  I was not far along at all, but a loss is a loss.  This is miscarriage #2 for us.  As I sit and pray I have been overcome with a great sense of peace and comfort.  something that can only be obtained when it is generously lavished upon you by our Heavenly father...  This gave me a calm through this sad and painful time.  I step back and look at my life through my sadness and I see an amazing husband, 2 beautiful daughters, and a home FILLED to the brim with Love...  GODS LOVE!  over the last few days I have received many e mails from friends who have no idea what is going on but just wanted to check in and see if I needed prayer for anything...  <--- if THAT is not Gods love being poured out on me and my family then, I don't know what is!   I am so happy with the life I have been given, I am choosing happiness and I am CHOOSING Praise though this experience.  God has richly blessed my life with wonderful children and a super patient man for a husband.  the blessings in my life completely outweigh the troubles...  or at least that's how I choose to see it!  God will use this experience for Good...  I cant wait to see what our future holds!  Thank you God for your many blessings!  

"we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.  For I am convinced that neither death nor life, nor angels or demons, nor the present nor the future nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the Love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord." 
-Romans 8:37-40

Friday, 31 August 2012

PWOC retreat 2012

throughout the last 9 months or so I have had my ups and my downs with God...  I have felt like he called me to this huge task last year and then left me to go it alone...  I was so heartbroken and bitter that I have struggled to really reconnect with him.  

Even this summer, I wasn't sure that I was going to attend the PWOC retreat.  when a friend asked me at church one week if I was going, E jumped in before I could answer and replied "yes, she is going, when is it and how much is it?"  well I guess I has my answer...  I was going :)  E and I had just bought a new van so we were tight on money...  the next week I got a call from a friend that works at the chapel and she said that someone wanted to pay my registration fee...  "WHAT?!"  I do believe that was my initial response...  it was nearly $200 and someone just wanted to pay that for me...  WOW!  clearly I was supposed to go to this retreat...  ---> fast forward to the day of the retreat.  I felt unconnected and isolated at first on the bus...  I knew God had something for me, but I was in such a valley and really so hard hearted at this point that I wasnt sure I would recieve what he had for me...  The retreat began and as we were in worship God brought to my mind my miscarriage, I havent thought about this in a long time, but when he brought it my mind he showed it to me from a different view.  it was as if I was seeing myself the way he saw me...  I was so broken and sad and yet I was praising God through the pain.  we were so close at that point...  It was like God was on my speed dial, anytime I needed him there he was...  I cried out to him the day we lost the baby .  I wasnt mad, I just wanted to understand.  God came to me in a dream as I cried myself to sleep...  he told me that he allowed me to loose this baby for my husbands salvation...  WOW!!  first of all HE CAME TO ME IN SUCH A REAL WAY!  he called my spirit instantly and at that moment I knew it was all part of his grand plan...  to see all of this from his view point...   it was so beautiful to see my brokeness raised up to him completely. ugh I dont think there are words to fully explain the beauty of that moment...  As I was singing praise to God, Tears just started to pour.  I couldn't even sing anymore, I missed him so much!  I was still asking the question "why did you leave me??"  after the first night I kind of chewed on all that had been going through my hear...  all that I had come out of that night with for sure was that I was longing for that closeness again BUT in my mind it was Gods fault that we weren't as close...  (REALLY??) 

SO the next morning we had another lesson and I was kind of there but not...  just soaking it all in I suppose..  we then had some free time I am currently training for yet another half marathon so I had a 10 mile run to do...  running is USUALLY when God can really work in me, mostly becasue I have to rely on him AND I am QUIET!!!  (that is not often the case! you can ask my poor husband!)  so as I was running, I began to pray to God, I said "God you clearly had a plan for me here..  I am not seeing it, I havent had any breakthrough, all I know is that I miss you SOO MUCH!  I feel like you have left me all alone to fend for myself and I am tired and weak and I dont know how much more I can take...  please God just tell me what I am looking for...  I need a neon sign here, I am clearly missing something so please tell me what I am looking for"   you want to know the response I got?  a woman's name ( I wont name her as I dont know that she would be comfortable with that) thats all I got though was her name...  So, I kept running and I began to think about what that meant...  should I pull her aside and talk to her?  maybe she has a special message for me?  maybe she is prepared to lay a holy smack down?  am I supposed to seek her out or let her come to me?  UGH so many question...  then I just cleared my mind and enjoyed the rest of my run...  that night we had our last session of the retreat and wouldn't you know it?  the woman whose name God gave me WAS THE LAST SPEAKER!!!  HAHA!  way to be patient AMBER!!!  

so her lesson prepared me to rededicate my life to Christ...  I asked a more seasoned woman to pray with me and talk with me...  as we talked I told her about how alone I felt and how I longed for that closeness again.  she began to pray with me and as we finished she began to ask me questions like , how is your marriage?   "Great" I said.  "God has really restored us."  then another question met with another praise, and another question met with another praise...  she looked at me with tears and said "Amber, GOD IS HERE!" she then said "could you possibly be being stubborn?"  OUCH!  but as I thought about it I WAS!  this is the visual I got in my head...  I had built these walls so high around my heart shortly after I felt like God left me alone and I have been attempting to come back to him with out realizing that I had created a fortress around my heart.  So all this time I have been praying God where are you?  and he was standing right outside my fortress tossing in blessing after blessing hoping that each one would bring some walls down...  That night God started helping me to tear them down brick by brick...  He allowed restoration of some relationships that I had hurt along the way.  His love was never more evident that it was in those hours of me asking for forgiveness and them granting it no questions asked!  I didn't deserve it and yet God moved their hearts to to forgive anyways!   There has been a complete transformation in me...  walls are gone, my heart is so open and I am so hungry for Gods word!  I feel sooo good!  God is amazing!  he never ceases to amaze me with all he can do WHEN WE LET HIM IN!!!  I want to say Thank you to all the ladies around me for not giving up on me, thank you for your prayers and your love and support...  Thank you to my amazing husband for not quitting on me either...  Thank you to my God for chasing after me and not letting me completely disappear!  I am so thankful for the LOVE God has put in my life!  

and to address the questions about FB, I have come back simply because God has made it clear to me that it was just for a season for me to be away from it.  If I were to stay away any longer it would just aid in my not being connected and I am made to uplift and praise and FB is just another avenue for me to use!  THANK YOU GOD for your patience!!!  

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Blessings overflow

Over the past year, I have struggled with feelings of depression, not being loved, rejection, and the list goes on.  I feel so often that I give and give and give and never receive anything in return..  REALLY?  Jesus gave his life for me and I am pouting about giving TOO much of myself???  In the past 3 weeks God has poured no, not poured....  literally drenched me and my household in Love...  random things here and there.  E and I were on the list to attend a marriage retreat this coming weekend, but then our childcare fell through, so I let the chapel know that we couldn't attend due to this issue, and 2 wonderful women stepped up and readily offered to take our kids for the weekend.  I couldn't believe it!  frankly, I still cant!  not only that, a few weeks ago I knew I was attending the PWOC retreat next month, but funds have been tight since we have bought a new vehicle, so I wasn't sure where exactly to pull from when out of the blue I get a call from the chapel office (a wonderful friend of mine works up there, well, a few of them do!) and she says "I just got a phone call and someone wants to cover your cost for the retreat in August.  Is this something you would accept?"  I had literally just that day been going over and over where to pull from....  its not cheap either, nearly $200.00 to go, again I was completely astonished.  (Thank you to who ever you are that paid that fee!  what a blessing you have been...  a real God sighting!)  and the biggest blessing of all, the one that I seem to glance over each and every day, my children that God hand picked for me and E to raise.  I went out to a base event with a few friends on Tuesday evening, and before I left I told A that I was going and it was just for mommies, she burst into tears because she didn't want me to go.  in that moment I felt blessed by her tears, because I felt like it was reassurance that I was doing something right, and in this moment right now, I feel overwhelmed with love, That child has the biggest heart, she loves so freely and deeply, I pray that I would be more like that.  I pray that I would be more like my wonderful blessings...  In the last few weeks its as if God has literally reached down from heaven, held E and I in his hands and just poured on the love.  Since my disappearing act from Facebook, I am not in close contact with many people, but the ones that I have been in contact with have also just poured out onto our little family.  Thank you all for being the feet, the hands, the words, the breathe, and the love of God.  Through all of this, and many other little things here and there its as if God is saying "Buckelew family, I love you THIS much!" and even more specifically me personally, he has really laid it on thick!  I have sooo needed a good chat and a good long hug from my heavenly father and tonight I am FINALLY experiencing it, I really am blessed beyond belief, Thank you God for sticking with me through my mess...  I will likely continue to be a mess until I die, but I thank you for putting up with me and even blessing me when I have really done nothing to deserve it.  Thank you lord for not judging me but instead, welcoming me back into your arms.  This is a place that I have longed to be and I am finally home.  and I plan to stay here for a while...  Thank you for not giving up on me.
 here is a video that was shared with me after I posted this blog, it beautifully states everything I have been feeling.  Enjoy!!!

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

End Goal

So over my last few months I have really begun to seriously think about me...  who I am, what I do and why I do it...  I have discovered something...  I am LAZY!  If there is not an attainable goal at the end of whatever I am doing, I wont do it...  here a are a few examples...  After having B I lost 72 lbs in an 18 week period...  WHY because I was in a competition where the winner would get cold hard cash...  I took second place and what happened as soon as it was over...  I started eating whatever I wanted and stopped exercising...  why?  because I wouldn't win anything...  after about a year I managed to put back on 28 lbs....  laziness....  Training..  I have trained for and ran 7 half marathons...  but once the training is over...  so is my running!  why not stick with it?  because there is nothing I am pushing towards... So, in the last month, God has started a new work...   well he was probably always doing it but I am just now allowing myself to partake...  Each day our heavenly father gives us just what we need for that day...  once this realization struck me, I was able to tap into that through prayer and being focused.  I am working toward a better me... whether I can see what I will look like, or how I will act at the end or not.  God has given me all I need for THIS day and its my job to really focus on him and partake in this gift.  Through prayer and daily Bible reading I can just feel a shift in my spirit, I am much calmer, my thoughts are orderly, my family enjoys being around me and I them, relationships have been restored, my reactions to unforeseen instances are NOT what I would expect of myself, God is again at work in a mighty way in me.  I have been able to stay on top of my fitness 6 days a week!  not only that but I am able to even manage my food intake...  loosing weight getting healthy and with no end goal other than my personal success!  there are many times that I don't want to count the calories that I am eating, or that I don't want to read my bible or that I don't want to work out, but then God just whispers, "you can do this", and I do!  I don't know that I have ever been so focused on anything quite like I am now.  there has been a shift and I do believe this shift will have ripple effects in my life for many years to come.    

Friday, 18 May 2012

new beginnings

This month marks the end of a season and the beginning of a new one for me.  This is the month that my role as PWOC president has come to an end.  It is rather bitter sweet.  At our last PWOC Wednesday during praise and worship God showed me a wonderful display of where I started this term and where I have ended.  I do believe that the main area of my life that God has grown / changed me is motherhood.  during that display I saw that my patience has grown, my volume has lowered, my love has blossomed, my fear has subsided, my faith has been grounded, my mind has been focused, my marriage has been strengthened, my heart has been changed, my being has been transformed.  now I am not at all saying that I did this on my own because that is just silly, I was open and begging for change.  I cant count how many nights I cried in my bed.  or how many days were filled with tears and frustration.  but I can say for 100% certainty that God slowly began a good work and the best part is that its NOT done!  I am excited about this new beginning.  being able to focus all of my attention on my family.  we have all grown and changed through this year, and I am so excited to see where God takes us from here.  

My girls and I at a mothers day tea at the base chapel! 

Update on our food adventure:
we successfully made it through our first month of whole/ organic eating.  We have met with some opposition  to anything GREEN...  but once A tries it she usually enjoys it.  its just a matter of getting her tr actually try it!  the food has been yummy and we have only has 1 dud so I would say thats pretty awesome!  it has been made 100%  clear that Dye is a HUGE offender for A.  she can have chocolate and be fine but give her m&ms and she is a whole different child...  I know I personally went through a crazy Detox period for about 3 weeks but now I feel great!  and the month of meals in my freezer helped me stay on track and not go for a less healthy option...  its been so nice!  dinner time has been MUCH easier! 

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

our food adventure

We have been home nearly 1 week now and I am super excited to say that Ash has already started to simmer a bit!  I got an e mail a few weeks ago about this once a month cooking stuff...  so I tried it out here is a link if you would like to see it.  (i did the April whole foods menu)
The results for my home was 20 dinners (with leftovers that will be used for lunch) and 6 Breakfasts frozen and ready for use!  here is a look at my freezer.

and the best part of all is that about 90-100% of each meal is ALL ORGANIC!  this is going to make meal time so much easier for me!  I am really looking forward to it!  I had Ash try bites (of fully cooked food) as I was cooking and she LOVED it all...

Throughout this week, I have been so taken back by the out pouring of support.  I am thankful for the articles that people send me and the meal plan suggestions, and everything really!  THANK YOU all for your support.  I am so blessed to have 2 wonderful children and an amazing husband, and all the wonderful friends God has placed in my life. God has placed some amazing people on my path, and I am am just very thankful for that.

Well, I have a very eager 5 year old who is wanted to help clean the mess I have made in the kitchen!  better take advantage of that while I can!  enjoy your day and check out that awesome website.

Thursday, 5 April 2012

disappearing act

Ok, I have said today that I am going to delete my Face Book account.  I am going to, but I want to clarify my reasoning behind it as it may seem abrupt and harsh...

First let me start by explaining a little something...  I have a very lively (to put it nicely) 5 year old.  we took her in to a child psych. and she has 14 of the 18 markers of ADHD.  The Doctor was reluctant to actually diagnose her 1) because that wasn't actually what we were there for. and 2) neither Eddie or myself have been diagnosed with it and its a biological disorder so unless one of us has it, she cant have it...   the problem with this is that neither of us have ever been tested...  All this to say we have a VERY hyper possibly ADHD child on our hands and at times it can be very trying...  I often find myself so upset with her and ,to be honest I know its not her fault...

early in march Eddie and I went to Paris and while we were there something clicked in my brain about food... everything around me in paris was fresh whole food....  why cant we eat more like that I thought..  well, when we got home I started researching organic and whole food, why its good and what the benefits are...  one thing that kept catching my eye were articles about ADHD.  so I started digging in...  did you know that one of the biggest triggers for ADHD kiddos is not actually sugar?  its Dye...  and dye is in EVERYTHING...  did you know that in Europe companies such as Kraft and Pepsi are required by law to put a warning label on their products if they contain dyes?  in order to get around this they simply don't use the dyes for the products sent there...  why not just change all foods world wide?  because its too expensive and no one in the US is making them...  not that Kraft foods or Pepsi is the best for you anyways, but you get my point...  so after reading and reading and reading some more, Eddie and I decided to Focus and go Organic and whole with our foods.  I only got to try this diet on my oldest daughter for a week and a half here in the states but I can say WOW!!!  what a change!  she is a different kiddo...  now back to Face Book...

For me personally, FB is a HUGE distraction.  I tent to spend hours on there.  (my blog is all about honesty!) countless hours are waisted in my house on Fb...  This is something I have personally struggled with for a few years now.  I talk myself out of deleting it so many times because of what other people say.  If I can help someone today by being vulnerable, then why not right?  but if that help is coming at a cost of my lack of attention to my family, that's not ok...  I need to find balance, and right now for ME personally my balance is letting go of FB.  I will eventually come back I am sure.  but right now my main focus is getting my little lady's food under control.  breakfast, Lunch, Snacks and dinner...  it takes a lot of planning and a lot of preparation. EVENTUALLY, I will have it down but to begin with, I need some time to focus on this task at hand.  I need to pour myself out all over my family and not be stressed out because I am doing too much.  and often FB is something that I give a lot of my attention too.

This will not only allow me to focus on our diet change, but it will allow me some much needed quiet time with my heavenly father.  This is something I have not been as diligent as I should be.

Please understand that I am going to be around, but my main focus is my precious family that God has blessed me with.  This food stuff is not something I am naturally good at, don't get me wrong I could bake all day long, but cooking, not so much...  and because I am not naturally good at it I tend to get a little tense in the kitchen which leads to stress..

Ok so now that its all out in the open, I pray that you all understand exactly where I am coming from, I just need some time.