Saturday, January 30, 2010

First Responders Respond to Cry for Help

This past Wednesday, we had the "priviledge" of dealing with several first responders. I placed a call for help, got great assistance over the phone, which was then followed up by about thirteen first responders to my house (I was amazed at the huge number! Our street was filled with emergency vehicles, so thankful our neighbors didn't need to leave their homes as that would have been impossible!) Within a matter of four minutes after the initial call for help, our physical needs were being taken care of and everyone was safe and in good hands.

It was so simple!

1. We realized we needed help.
2. We called for help.
3. Immediate instructions were given over the phone.
4. First responders came to our house immediately.
5. Help was provided.
6. Everyone was safe.

It is the same thing when we need help from God.

1. We realize that we can't do it on our own (DUH!, but so easily forgotten)
2. We pray to God for help. (calling for help)
3. We read His word (immediate instructions)
4. We ask others to pray for us as well (first responders)
5. God answers our prayers
6. We are safe in His arms, always.

The experience in dealing with the first responders was awesome and I have nothing but praises to the City of Scottsdale Police Department and Fire Department. Those that we called for prayer and additional assistance during the initial 24 hours of this crisis heard our praises for these first responders. When God helps us, should we not also being singing His praises?

We are also so grateful for our pastoral first responders and for their encouragement and prayers. Their support has been incredible and has helped us tremendously.

While the immediate crisis was handled and over in a matter of hours, the aftermath continues to exist. My facebook status on Friday was "Strength will rise as we wait upon on the Lord and I'm waiting on the Lord as I need strength. Today, I posted Klove radio's Encouraging Word of the Day. "I waited patiently for the Lord to help me, and He turned to me and heard my cry. Psalm 40:1 NLT". We have many people praying for us and we definitely feel it and are so thankful. We are in a much better spot today than on Wednesday night and Mark and I have had our strength refilled. We will be continuing to work through this situation over the next few weeks and know that God will be walking with us, guiding us every step of the way.

We are so blessed!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Fishing or Marriage? Which to do?

Twenty years ago today, at exactly 2:02 PM, I was asked a question, "Are you sure that you want to do this, or shall we leave your mother to deal with the crowd and go fishing?" My response, "Let's do this and we'll go fishing real soon dad." At 2:20 PM, I was Mrs. Mark Eley.

My father and I have a very unique relationship. The question that he posed twenty years ago (which he asked after all the bridesmaids were in place and the ring bearer and flower girl were walking down the aisle) is one that we continue to tease each other about to this day. Just last week he even reminded me, "We could have gone fishing". That question was his way of letting me know that if I had any doubts about getting married that he would support me and that I didn't have to go through with it. My happiness was his concern.

As I look back over these past twenty years, there have been moments when fishing sounded like a much better idea than working on my marriage. For anyone who says that marriage is easy, I would be concerned. Marriage is hard, no matter who you are. I am very blessed that both my husband and I are Christians and do not believe in divorce, but we have been to the crossroad of divorce/marriage and seriously looked at our options. We fought our way back and we both agree that our marriage is much stronger because of us being at the crossroads. However, we should have never even come close to there if we had been focused on our marriage instead of our own selfish needs.

We have been through so much in these twenty years of marriage; infertility, significant marital issues, the loss of family members, adopting children, and on and on, and God has been so faithful through it all. We finally figured out that if we focus on God's will for our lives, instead of our wills, it is so much easier.

Tonight, while we were on our way to dinner (Monti's, my favorite mommy daddy only restaurant), I asked Mark if he would promise that these next twenty years would not be as hard as these first twenty. He laughed and reminded me that we were now getting ready to enter a new phase of our lives, as soon Jessica will be leaving, then one by one our children will be leaving, starting their own families and then we'll have all of those stressers. But, as long as we focus on God, we can do ALL THINGS, as He strengthens us.

Thank you God, for my patient husband Mark and help us to continue to keep our eyes focused on You and that we will continue to press on and finish the race. Happy 20th Wedding Anniversary to Us!

If you are struggling in your marriage, please know that we are praying for you. Let us know if we can do anything to help you.