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I am in awe of how The Lord works. Where to start…

About 10 years ago, I started physical therapy school. There were about 35 people in our class then at Indiana University’s PT program on the IUPUI campus. There were only a few of us that were married or got married while in PT school. Since those of us that were married were in a sort of different stage of life than others, we tended to hang together, study together. One of those people was a guy named Andrew Bauermeister. We would often see his wife, Lisa, as she was a nurse & would sometimes be able to stop & see him or have lunch. (Medical campus…) So we survived PT school (I was the girl that passed out on the first day of cadaver lab. There has to be at least one & it was me.), graduated & scattered off to work.

I know a lot of people dislike Facebook & I agree completely that you can allow it to become something evil, but if tempered with wisdom, it can also be a blessed place to connect with friends far away-other states, other countries. So I was able to see pictures of the Bauermeister clan as they added children & updates via Facebook, but otherwise we haven’t had opportunity to really connect.

As The Lord weaves a beautiful tapestry of our lives together-all of us…let me tell you a story. I’m going to copy & paste some segments from Lisa’s writings and her note to us that we received a couple days ago.

“Four years ago, my husband Andy could barely run one mile without being totally out of breath. Since then he’s ran multiple 5K’s, 10K’s, 15K’s, 50K’s, half marathons, the Chicago marathon, Bourbon Chase Relay, the Peace, Love and 50 miles trail marathon in Hell, Michigan, as well as his first 100 mile trail marathon at the Indiana Trail 100 in Albion, Indiana. When Andy first started talking about wanting to run 100 mile trail marathons, he had a strong desire to simply finish the race in the 30 hour time limit. He ran the Indiana Trail 100 in 27 hours and 30 minutes under some of the absolute worst weather conditions for Indiana in April. When he talked of wanting to run more 100 mile races, he discovered a passion to start running for a cause. We talked and prayed about it and decided his next race in Leadville, Colorado on August 17 would be a great opportunity to accomplish that goal and help bring a sweet two year old boy named Tucker home to Ryan and Amy Abell; however, God clearly wanted us to do more, so we set a goal to raise twice the amount of money that they still needed to fully fund their adoption in hopes of helping other families, as well.

On August 17th and 18th, Andy completed 100 miles in 28 hours and 44 minutes. Our friend Matt Limeberry ran 50 miles with Andy and I ran the last 5 with him. We were even able to talk with Amy on speaker phone the last half mile while we crossed the finish line. Andy wouldn’t have finished the race without the help of family, friends, many prayers, but mostly the motivation to help bring these sweet ones home to their forever families. God rocked our world when we found out we had raised all $10,000 of our goal almost right after crossing the finish line.

Read Andy’s race report for a more detailed description of the race:
http://bauies-run.blogspot.com/

Since then, we have raised a total of over $11,300 for the Abell family and five other families who are choosing to be obedient to God’s desire for their families to adopt a child. We have prayed over this money, as well as the families we feel God is leading us to bless with these funds. So many people were involved in getting us past our $10,000 goal! Over 100 #runningtuckerhome t-shirts were sold, a 12 year old girl held a China themed babysitting night for our community, doctors, nurses, children, Andy’s patients, family and friends donated to help bring Tucker and other sweet ones home to their forever families.

God put a desire in so many individuals to donate to #runningtuckerhome. Most of them have never met and will never meet the Abell family or yours. We know that adoption, whether international or domestic, is incredibly expensive, but we are so excited to help and be able to pass along these donations to your family and continue seeing your adoption process. We have written and will be mailing you a check for $1,000.”

Woe. Speechless. These people I haven’t seen in probably 8 years are sending US a check for $1000 for OUR adoption?????!!!!!! What?! How?! We are so undeserving. And yet isn’t that just how The Lord cares for us?

And I can’t wait for the day to reconnect with them, to let them meet my little girl whom God predestined for our family & to sit together basking in the joy of his peace, his plan, his purpose & reminisce how he wove our stories together.

Here is a picture of the Bauermeister family:

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If you’d like to learn more about the Bauermeister’s friends’ adoption that inspired Andrew’s 100 mile trail run you can read Amy’s blog here.

Hebrews 10:24 (ESV)
And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works

Inspiration. Let me tell you some stories about some families that have adopted and been a part of the holy spirit’s stirring in our hearts.

Part one: The Palm Family
A sweet friend from high school went to college & met a sweet man & soon they were married. Both loved The Lord & sought after him. They purposefully & intentionally sought his will in their lives-through work, through marriage, through increasing their family by children. Theirs is not a perfect story (for no such human story exists), it is not without trial or trouble. But it is filled with the love of Jesus & they have made themselves vulnerable for his sake to share their lives & his love with others.

By God’s grace, he has increased their children to nine. And as a family of 11, they have advocated for the orphan, pleaded the cause of the weak & lavishly loved the unloved in the parts of the world that The Lord has sent them.

I would do an injustice by trying to re-tell their adoption stories. My friend Lovelyn (aptly named), has a blog where she has shared their family’s adoption journeys & I’d like to share that site with you. You can learn more about their family & adoption experiences there.

http://www.momentswithlove.blogspot.com

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The Lord blessed me with another year of life. Each day is a blessing. And I am so thankful for these days.
I cut my hair to even it up with my short hairs from surgery. Here it is:

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Someone asked me the other day about if I felt fully recovered-and specifically about speech, swallow & hearing. I feel fully recovered. Two of my girls from my running group are running with me tomorrow (Saturday) in my first half marathon. It’s in Charlotte, NC. We are on our way now.
As for the other recovery items-I’ve adjusted pretty well to hearing with just my right ear. It’s harder with background noise, but I think I manage pretty well. Swallowing is fine, & my voice is normal enough. I don’t know that I can sing as well as before (not that it was great, but I can tell the difference).

Would love your prayers tomorrow morning as we run-for freedom from injury & a successful finish. Thanks friends!

Well we are on our way. By the time we reach our destination in Columbus we will have traveled 2217 miles total to come to this point in this adventure. This has been my wonderful chauffeur for most of those miles:

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My wonderful husband, my best friend. I thank God for giving me such a blessing in this man.

“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls, for he has no one to help him up.” Ecclesiastes 4:9,10

Some thoughts as we travel:
Fear. I cannot say that I am completely without fear, but I have been continually amazed how “the peace that passes all understanding” has come over me. The following are a sampling of verses that I found comfort in as I prepared for my scheduled C-section (Will!) in 2005. I was so scared. I remember as a young married couple talking about having kids with my husband & telling him that I was excited to be pregnant & give birth to our children. I told him we could have children as long as I never had to have a C-section. Silly. So of course God taught me that I could trust Him through that. Now these verses are again comforting as we go through this adventure.

“The Lord is my light and my salvation-whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life-of whom shall I be afraid?”
Psalm 27:1

“I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.”
Psalm 34:4

“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea”
Psalm 46:1-2

“May your unfailing love be my comfort, according to your promise to your servant.”
Psalm 119:76

“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
Isaiah 41:10

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Jeremiah 29:11

“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”
1 Peter 5:7

I am so thankful to the many interceding in prayer for us before the throne of grace. I know I have asked for many specific prayers, but I am hoping I’m not asking too much to ask more-
-For safe travel
-For good rest tonight
-For the kids to be of good spirit & good humor as my precious aunts care for them in my parents’ absence as they travel to/from the hospital to be with us for the surgery
-For successful surgery
-For peace for Nick, my parents, & his parents as they wait in the waiting room
-For opportunities to minister God’s grace to the staff around us

No matter how “perfectly” it all goes, our God is perfect & sovereign. To Him be the glory.

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