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Welcome to the CMWF Blog! We hope you'll find some encouragement and comfort here through stories of military life and truth from God's Word.


He Isn't Mine To Give

By Molly Huggins

 


“Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever” (Psalm 118:1, NKJV).



I hate the word “well.”

As in, (August of 2010), “Well, I might have to go to Pakistan.” He did, two weeks later, while I was pregnant, after we had sold our house in preparation for moving to Germany. But that is another story for another day.

So he came home around the beginning of September (of 2012) and said, in THAT voice, “Well, I got an email today…” I almost threw up in the dishwater.
They needed one man. ONE MAN to go to Afghanistan--in two weeks--and he just might be that man.

I preach and preach about being content with God’s will for our lives. I say that my life means nothing without Christ, that so much of what I value is wheat and chaff, that I surrender my plans, confident in His loving kindness and mercy.
And then He tests me.

Husband came home and said, “Well … “ and I choked down sobs at the prospect of more goodbyes. And more tears pooled on my cheeks because my womb was empty, and now there would be more months of not being pregnant. But, I breathed in slowly and looked hard at my handsome man, and I knew, I know still, that the Master Planner will give us the grace we need in the moment we are desperate for it.

Oddly enough, I wasn’t angry that he had to leave. Debating the politics of the situation in the moment is a luxury we forgo when we choose this life. Logistically, I have leaving down to a science, and we are perpetually prepared. This is his job and he’s willing to do it.

Additionally, there was a not-small part of my heart that was grieving at the thought of another family living out this same abysmal waiting. If we didn’t go, there would be another pregnant “well …” being spilled out in someone’s kitchen. Is that weird? It’s who I am.

I felt completely divorced from the civilian world.

This one is hard to admit. I felt immense guilt over not being angry at the situation, of looking him in the eye and loving him more for the man that he was in that moment, of being proud of the choices he makes. I felt like I should put up a fight, I should rage and scream and cry because he’s leaving us again.

The world tells me that romantic love feels good and I should be happy and how could he do this to us? And I love him fierce and hard and true, and yet this, this did not feel good. Do I not love him enough because I was not mad at him? But oh, I do, I love this man.

Something about this reeked of sanctification.

This one is even harder to admit because in my fear, I lost sight of real, hard, truth.
This would have been deployment number four. And after the first year, I cannot shake the feeling that every time he walks away - after every goodbye - the odds markedly decrease that he returns whole, or at all. I cried hot tears at the thought of losing him. It wasn’t rational, but it was real.

He was never mine to give, but in my fear I clung desperately to the falsehood that he was mine to keep. This is how I felt … but what did I do? What did I do two weeks later when yes was an ugly, heavy word and we planned our goodbyes? {We had a reprieve, he wasn’t supposed to leave until mid-October}. How did I calm the storm, the wind and waves boisterous around my sinking feet?

The circumstances in which they chose my husband aren’t necessary to relate here. Suffice it to say I was proud of this husband of mine. He is an honorable man and I loved him even more, if possible, throughout these events.

So this is what I did. I wiped away the tears. I bought him some new underwear at Wal-Mart. I bought him some fancy headphones to keep the music piping in, the loneliness at bay. We updated the will. I winked at him a little more from across the room and I held his hand a little tighter in church.

And I surrendered him.

But, they fought for our family, his bosses, they fought for us. If he had gone, our home life would have been predominately daddy-free for 21 months … six months deployed, two months of training post-deployment, four months home, and nine more months gone. I am weary just writing it down. It wasn’t terribly unusual for us, these staccato bursts of time … together, apart, together, apart … but it. is. so. hard.

And so, there were more weeks of not knowing, of surrender and fear and worry, of uncertainty. And who could I tell? It’s unfair to get people worked up about maybe, even a maybe of this magnitude. I whispered it in asides to a few dear friends in the beginning. I was more careless as the time dragged on and on, fatigue loosening my tongue. I was consumed by this. I was a reluctant, recalcitrant child of God, shaking my fist at a Heavenly Father who, even still, works His plans for good.

And, well - after all that - he didn’t have to go.

I was eternally grateful for his command team. And for an Architect who designs us to live right where He would have us. Which sometimes is in uncertainty. But right then, was still in Tennessee. Together.

I won’t lie, it was hard to be grateful for this process. And I was weary on the other side, more weary in this Army life than I’ve ever been. Weary of the toll this life takes on our family, on our marriage, and on this husband o’ mine. But God is good and He promises us rest. And so, I kept winking at the husband from across the room and holding his hand a little tighter in church.

He isn’t mine to give … and so, I am grateful for every gift of a moment with this man I love so fierce and hard and true.

And, even in the midst of this exhausting Army life, I am flat on my face, grateful to the Lord for drawing us closer together, for strengthening our marriage in the face of uncertainty. He did the first year, and the third, and the fifth, and September 2012, and even now.
His mercy endures forever.

(And friends? The sad truth is that not every story has a happy ending. Please know that it is by God’s grace that our marriage survives--we are wholly unqualified to make it on our own! If that was not the case for you, it does not mean that His grace and mercy have abandoned you. My heart aches for you and your loved ones, and I pray you will know peace and comfort from our Heavenly Father.)




Molly Huggins (All The Grace Between) is an Army bride, one-time helicopter pilot, compulsive writer, friend seeker, and lover of color and all things textile. Her current occupation is ringmaster of the Huggins family circus (party of five). She has a B.A. in English from Covenant College and a passion for meeting other women right in the middle of their own messy stories. Pull up a chair at her virtual beat-up kitchen table, listen to her stories, and maybe even tell her yours.







Don't Lose Heart

By Laura Moore


16 So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. 17 For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, 18 as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal. 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

 

 

As I grow more familiar with the military community and wade deeper into this lifestyle, naturally I gain confidence. That has been such a great thing! The whole experience has taught me to be much more independent. I’ve run a household on my own and lived out weeks at a time as a single mother. I’ve repaired a broken heater and toilet, taken the car in for an oil change, and paid the bills for my family.  I'm laughing because those seem like silly things to be proud of; but to me, it was a big deal! I was nineteen when I got married, and as a young military spouse I didn’t have as much experience in those areas. Even though to someone else it may have not been a huge deal for the heater to break, to me it felt like the end of the world. Or when the toilet broke and I discovered a quick fix with the chain was all it took to start working again- I was beyond proud of my new abilities!

I may have gained confidence in the ability to roll up my sleeves and handle those things, but along the way I realized that no amount of strength willed by my mind would carry me through an entire deployment, a season of work-ups, or the handful of moves in a short period of time. I didn't have the strength and my heart failed right away. The first week Darren was away I was saying how I missed him and ready for it to be over, but we had only just begun the long time apart. I would have thrown in the towel if not for truth found in the text of 1 Corinthians 4:16-18.

Taking a close look at verse 18, we're reminded that we should look to the things that are unseen. We should look to God. Yes, yes, I know that already and you do, too- but what does that really look like? Maybe it means that we don't pretend to have it all figured out for the sake of looking good, that it's alright to admit how sad we are or stressed in order to come to a place where we can say we are truly at peace. And not because of anything we did, but because of everything God works out through us. The secret is to move into the presence of God daily to be renewed each day.

During momentary trials, I looked to the Lord and it was made clear He had a plan in all of this. Resting in His strength allowed me to live content. He provided and was faithful over and over.

I hope that no matter where you are in this journey, when other people look at you they don't hear you boasting in your own ability, but that they hear how God renews you and gives you hope along the way. I know how tempting it is to want praise for all this hard work, but let God reward you. Our hope is not only for our good but it's also for the glory of God to show in our lives, so that others may to be drawn to Himself.

Reflection

Where do you tend to fix your eyes? On yourself? On the approval of others? On some other desire?

What steps do you need to take to fix your eyes on Christ?


Prayer

Lord, I am so thankful for Your great love for me, and that You are all-sufficient in every season of my life. I confess that I look to other things besides You- those things never bring true peace. Help me to turn my eyes on You in all situations, for all things. I trust that You are more than enough for me. Amen.



Laura is a Christ-follower, Navy wife, mother to one toddler, writer, and coffee drinker. She writes about Faith, Military Life, and Motherhood at Embracing This Life.


Molly's Story

By Molly Huggins

 


I love stories and storytelling. I love seeing the threads the Master Planner stitches into our lives and the ways they change us. But in all honesty, here's the truth about the weaving: I didn't design my tapestry this way. And the push and pull of the needle as it pricks my heart - well, sometimes the weaving hurts. There's a particular thread that, for the longest time, I wanted to wish away. I prayed, begged, and pleaded for the Lord to cut it short. To change my story to fit what I wanted.

I’ve been staring at my computer for days trying to figure out how to fit all the emotions onto one screen, into one story.

How do I tell you that they called me when my daughter was five months old and told me I would be deploying in the fall?

{I was an Army National Guard helicopter pilot at the time}.

How do I tell you that we already knew Husband, an active duty helicopter pilot, would also be deploying in the fall?
Is it possible for you to feel the way I felt, bewildered and still surprised, when I climbed on a plane headed overseas?

I truly believed God would take this away. I thought this would go away if I said all the right things about God’s plan and His will and trust and sacrifice and all the other Christian buzzwords that sound great and echo hollow in our reeling hearts.

I was like Abraham, waiting for the lamb while I offered up my child. And when none came, when I waded through a long summer of preparation and emotion, oh, I was so angry.

I didn’t want to leave her. And I said all the right things about duty, and my job, and what I signed up for, but I’ll be honest with you- I never, for one second, thought it would happen to me. That’s another story for another day, but I really thought I would just sail through this Army life and have all the fun flying and none of the sacrifice. I was selfish, so selfish.

My sister and her husband took our daughter for a year. She was one and a half. I cried salty, unceasing tears through all the airports with the memory of her chubby arms squeezed around my neck in our last goodnights.

We got her back when she was two and a half. There will never be enough words to tell you how that felt. I tried, {and there are pictures of our reunion here}. I am still trying, even now, to tell that piece of the story.

It took me two years to stop being angry, and I still grieve the loss of time with my child. It took me two years and then some to understand, and be grateful for the stories He is writing for me and my family.

That’s the end thread of this story, and I am grateful. For the humbling of my selfish heart. For the dismantling of my pride. Even for the two and a half year spread between children that resulted in the gift of our first son.

The stories we fear become our Story and the hard parts change us, they carve into our souls and make new shapes. And maybe the mystery is that I am grateful for the shape I'm in, but I'm just honest enough to admit that most days, I wouldn't have chosen His method of carving.

I can grieve, and be grateful.

Friends - how has the Lord shaped you? What hard stories is He using to draw you closer to Him? I would love to hear them, and to pray for you.

 


Molly Huggins (All The Grace Between) is an Army bride, one-time helicopter pilot, compulsive writer, friend seeker, and lover of color and all things textile. Her current occupation is ringmaster of the Huggins family circus (party of five). She has a B.A. in English from Covenant College and a passion for meeting other women right in the middle of their own messy stories. Pull up a chair at her virtual beat-up kitchen table, listen to her stories, and maybe even tell her yours.


Psalm 27: Take Heart
{Trigger: Combat loss}

Word of a crash travels quickly in the aviation community.

On this particular Tuesday, I was fortunate enough to hear the news from my husband, which meant I also knew he was safe.

But grief still comes with relief, with the knowledge that somewhere, on six different doorsteps, two solemn uniformed soldiers are ringing the doorbell. Six lives changed in a horrible, irrevocable way. Six people waiting on a phone call that isnʼt coming.

Bear with me, I am going to go a little backwards here. I want to tell you about Psalm 27, a psalm characterized by Matthew Henry as being, “Expressive of the pious and devout affections with which gracious souls are carried out towards God at all times, especially in times of trouble.”

And oh, in this life there is trouble.

Verse 14 tells us to wait. Specifically, “Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart, and wait for the Lord.”

 

 


We wait on the Lord, but the stark truth is we donʼt always get the answer we want--healing, prosperity, life. But friends, that does not void the promises made in His inerrant Word. We are not abandoned. We are loved. We are FORGIVEN. We are known. And He works all things for the good of those who love Him.

And while we wait, may this be what we seek:

One thing I ask from the Lord,
this only do I seek:
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
all the days of my life,
to gaze on the beauty of the Lord
and to seek him in his temple.
For in the day of trouble
he will keep me safe in his dwelling;
he will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent
and set me high upon a rock {Psalm 27:4-5}.


“The gracious presence of God, his power, his promise, his readiness to hear prayer, the witness of his Spirit in the hearts of his people—these are the secrets of his tabernacle, and in these the saints find cause for that holy security and serenity of mind in which they dwell at ease. This sets them upon a rock which will not sink under them, but on which they find firm footing for their hopes; nay, it sets them up upon a rock on high, where the raging threatening billows of a stormy sea cannot touch them; it is a rock that is higher than we” {Matthew Henry Commentary on the Whole Bible}.

So we wait, we rest, we cling tight to the promises that are true even in the darkest days. And sisters, I know there are days, weeks, months even that the knowledge of His promises must carry us through the treachery of our despairing hearts. What we know is not what we feel.

“Those that wait upon the Lord have reason to be of good courage” {Matthew Henry}.

 

Reflection

What does it mean to “wait on the Lord?” What should your attitude be while you wait?

How easy is it for you to remember God’s promises during times of heartache? Why?

 What is your typical response when you don’t get the answer from God that you were hoping for? What does God want for you during those times?




Prayer

Father, give me the strength to wait on You in my times of heartache and fear. Let Your Spirit remind me of Your promises. I believe that You are good, and that You love me. I trust You as my safe dwelling, my shelter, my Rock. Amen.

 

Molly Huggins (All The Grace Between) is an Army bride, one-time helicopter pilot, compulsive writer, friend seeker, and lover of color and all things textile. Her current occupation is ringmaster of the Huggins family circus (party of five). She has a B.A. in English from Covenant College and a passion for meeting other women right in the middle of their own messy stories. Pull up a chair at her virtual beat-up kitchen table, listen to her stories, and maybe even tell her yours.


Psalm 91: The Soldier's Prayer

 

 

Psalm 91 is often referred to as the Soldier’s Prayer or the Soldier’s Psalm. Countless veterans of the many wars around the globe have prayed this Psalm and carried it with them into battle. As military wives, it is our responsibility to wield the Sword of God’s Word in our homes, and Psalm 91 is one of the sharpest swords in our arsenal. If your husband is deployed, this passage of scripture can be prayed as a hedge of protection around him in battle. If your husband is home, these verses can be prayed over your entire family as you seek God’s protection from not only physical harm, but also from oppression, spiritual attacks and other wicked schemes from the enemy.

 

If you are not in the habit of praying God’s Word over your husband, I encourage you to start with some of these verses from Psalm 91. You can insert your husband’s name as I have done below. Your husband may fight physical wars in the military but as Christians, we all fight in a much larger spiritual battle. As military wives, our roles are very significant. We are Warrior Princesses of the Most High God, called into His service as a Sword wielding warrior. Pick up your Sword, Princess! It’s time to battle for those we love.

 

Bob, who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
Will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say to the Lord, “You are Bob’s refuge and his fortress,
Our God, in whom we both trust!”
For it is He who delivers my husband from the snare of the trapper
And from the deadly pestilence.
He will cover Bob with His pinions,
And under His wings Bob may seek refuge;
His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.
Bob will not be afraid of the terror by night,
Or of the arrow that flies by day;
Of the pestilence that stalks in darkness,
Or of the destruction that lays waste at noon.
A thousand may fall at my husband’s side
And ten thousand at his right hand,
But it shall not approach Bob.
(Psalm 91:1-7)

 

Reflection & Prayer
Pray the words of the psalm over your husband today, and rest in the truth that God goes before him and beside him in any battle he faces.




Heather Tabers is the wife of a wounded warrior and the mother of five children. She is also currently a full time student, a specialty cake baker, and a volunteer with the VA Public Relations office. She writes about her life and her faith to encourage other women on her blog, Wives of War.



Psalm 139: Search My Heart

 A little over a year ago my husband left for two months of training. We’ve been together for years and living without him provided new challenges for me, like how to sleep in an empty bed, how to make meals for one, how to laugh and how to talk through my day. I felt an emptiness without his presence.

 

Within a week I was lonely. Although I was surrounded by friends and family, nothing could fill the void my husband left. I was desperate for comfort but was reminded of Psalm 139. My anxious heart found comfort as I prayed the words of the Psalm,

 

“Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” (23-24).

 

This prayer is a constant reminder to stay grounded as I strive to please to God while facing the challenges of missing an absent husband. The loneliness I felt afforded me the opportunity to dig deeper into God’s word.

 

The Psalmist exudes love for God and praises His companionship in verses 4-6; “Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely. You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain.” As I missed my husband and the way we would finish each others' sentences, I learned to recognize that my Father God is always present and knows my sentences before I even think them! Although this was knowledge I already had, the Holy Spirit comforted me by bringing it to my remembrance when I needed it the most.

 

Aside from working and spending time with family, I dedicated our time apart to God. I sought to build a more firm relationship with Him by putting Him first in every situation. Psalm 139 encourages a dialogue with God, a conversation about the ways that He loves me and is always with me, constantly encouraging me to draw closer to Him. During a season when I needed God the most, I found Him through His word and His precious thoughts of me (17).
In retrospect, as I think about the time apart from my husband, I realize things were not as gloomy as they seemed. As we prepare for another separation from each other as well as the support of friends and family, I am thankful I have God as my light for whom, “even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you” (12).

 

Reflection
What actions, thoughts or behaviors in my life may be “offensive” to God?
How can I pursue a stronger relationship with God every day?
Do I prioritize other people or things above God in my life? How? Why?


Prayer
Pray the words of the Psalmist today as you go about your day, inviting Him into all the things you are doing:

Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

 


 

Mary Parker is an Air Force wife who works as a public relations writer. A South Carolina girl at heart, she and her husband have recently relocated to Fairbanks, Alaska. Mary spends her spare time honing exercise and cooking skills, and is a self-proclaimed DIY addict. You can read about how faith and hope shape military family life, and check out Mary's latest projects, at Mary's Mischief. 




Dear Military Spouse: You Are Not Alone


I walked into the guest room as he was packing his bags. I had to weave through the camouflage catastrophe to get to him, making miracles of space in an oversized rucksack.


I leaned over his shoulder, kissed him, and eased myself out of the room.

I hate watching him pack his bags.

And this morning, when he stands framed in the wavy leaded glass of the front door, an olive drab duffel bag in each strong, tanned hand ... my heart cracks a little under the weight of it. This is the image I will carry through the next nine months, his broad back filling the doorway, walking away.

And we are not alone in this ... there are a million goodbyes whispered in doorways in the dark, on tarmacs, in hangars, and everywhere else soldiers gather to be shipped away. Many have gone before us. He represents them all in this moment, gathered in the shape of one man gripping his bags and hefting them on his shoulders.

And I curl inward on the hurt from my breaking heart, tears welling up from the dark, hard places that know about the leaving. Fat drops that pool in the corners of my eyes before I hastily brush them away. Because I ... we know about the leaving, the goodbyes, the what-could-happens. Grief and loss are begrudging companions on this journey we’ve traveled.

We all know about the leaving.


With wet cheeks, I uncurl from the leather chair. Because, sisters, here is the truth that keeps me breathing deep.

He’s leaving tomorrow. But I am not alone.

I am never alone. My loving, heavenly Father promises he will never forsake me. Never abandon me. {Hebrews 13:5b}

“Fear not,” he says, “for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; You are Mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, nor shall the flame scorch you. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior” {Isaiah 43:1-3}.


I know this is true. We’ve lived it. The Holy One has walked with me through moves, miscarriages, deployments, and death.

We serve a steadfast God, who lives with us in the hard places. One who knows about the leaving. And I will urge you {and preach to myself}, in the same way Moses exhorted Joshua before the battle of Jericho, against all odds: 


“Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you” {Deuteronomy 31:6}.


He’s leaving. But I am never alone.


Molly Huggins (All The Grace Between) is an Army bride, one-time helicopter pilot, compulsive writer, friend seeker, and lover of color and all things textile. Her current occupation is ringmaster of the Huggins family circus (party of five). She has a B.A. in English from Covenant College and a passion for meeting other women right in the middle of their own messy stories. Pull up a chair at her virtual beat-up kitchen table, listen to her stories, and maybe even tell her yours.



Dear Military Spouse: When God is in the Lonely Nights

Dear Military Spouse,

 

Military life can be so lonely. Deployments, TDYs and overnight training exercises leave us home alone much more often than we would like. When the kids are sick, the car breaks down, or the washing machine starts leaking, we often find ourselves asking, “Where is my husband?!” Even harder on the heart are the nights we lay in bed alone, curled up with a t-shirt that still smells like him and praying that God would bring him home safely. It has been during those moments that God has revealed Himself to me in a deeper and more intimate way.

 

Since I was a little girl I have known God has my Savior. As a teenager I began to know Him as the Lord of my life. As an adult, I learned how to go to Him as my Father. But it was not until I found myself all alone in our bed one night that I learned how to trust and love God as my Husband. That’s right; I said that God is my husband.

 

Isaiah 54:5 says, “For your Maker is your Husband – the LORD Almighty is his name…”

 

I remember reading these words and wondering how God could possibly be my Husband. I continued reading and found that God tells us that He will call us back as if we were a wife “deserted and distressed in spirit.” Oh sister, have you ever felt deserted or distressed in spirit? It was as if God had penned those words just for me. The more I read the more I learned that God has deep compassion for me and those words soothed my aching heart. How good is our God? Not only is He a Father to the fatherless, but He is a Husband to the single mom (even the geographically single mom!).

 

Whether your husband is sitting next to you as you read these words, or whether he is deployed on a mission, or he has abandoned you and his marriage vows, your Husband God is never going to leave your side. His love and compassion are never ending. His promises are never failing. Dear Sister, I encourage you to bring every unfulfilled expectation in your heart to God, lay them at the foot of His cross and exchange it for the peace that passes all understanding. Then curl up in the welcoming arms of your loving God and rest in His presence. He loves you, dear Sister. He always has and He always will.

 

Love,
Heather

Heather Tabers is the wife of a wounded warrior and the mother of five children. She is also currently a full time student, a specialty cake baker, and a volunteer with the VA Public Relations office. She writes about her life and her faith to encourage other women on her blog, Wives of War.



Dear Military Spouse: When Plans Come Undone

“Ah, Sovereign Lord, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you.”

Jeremiah 32:17


Dear Military Spouse,

You've probably been there, and so you know- deployments come with a great deal of planning. I made the decision to move into my parents’ home while my husband would be deployed for ten months. There was a lot of planning and preparation put into this move. Two days before the deployment, I stood in the kitchen surrounded by boxes. My mother-in-law and I were cleaning and getting things together when I received a phone call from a friend. She was asking if I had heard the news about deployment being canceled.

Can you picture that? I have to believe you’ve been through similar experiences. How everything you set in order is turned upside down and there lie all the scattered pieces of your well-thought-out plan.

I stood outside for a moment, trying to accept our new reality while mumbling under my breath, “I don’t know what to do.” I must have said that over and over for at least an hour. I was suffering from serious whiplash!

That afternoon we fielded dozens of phone calls and messages from family and friends offering assistance, and a place to stay for however long we needed. What a gift!

Sometimes when you’re going through something, it’s not clear what God is up to. It’s only when you’re out of the fog that you can turn back around and see where He was working things together for your good and His glory.

He is in control of our circumstances and nothing is a surprise to him. It’s one of my favorite characteristics of God because I love having a plan! He is not shrugging his shoulders about the direction of our lives. We can trust that he is at work through this challenging lifestyle to which he’s called our families. We are led by the God who is in highest authority and rules over everything that was, and is to come.

Laura



Laura is a Christ-follower, Navy wife, mother to one toddler, writer, and coffee drinker. She writes about Faith, Military Life, and Motherhood at her blog, Embracing this Life.


Thanksgiving, Together

 Editor's Note: On this Veterans Day, we'd like to express our sincere gratitude for all those who have served in our country's military. Thank you all for your tremendous sacrifice and bravery, and for serving our country in such a big way.

 

***

  Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Philippians 4:6


The table is set with Grandmother’s China. The kitchen is filled with the delectable smells of turkey, sweet potatoes, pumpkin pie and baked apples. The men are watching football and the ladies are chasing kids out of the kitchen. Sound familiar? This is the Thanksgiving I’ve always known, until last year. Our family spent Thanksgiving standing in long lines at Disney World making magical memories for our children that none of us will ever forget. I felt beyond blessed to be there but it just didn’t ‘feel’ like Thanksgiving. A phone call was all it took to put things into perspective.

 

For my husband, every holiday is an occasion to celebrate ‘Thanksgiving.’ Whenever friends and family call to wish him a ‘Happy Birthday, Father’s Day, Veteran’s Day and ‘Merry Christmas,’ his response is always the same, “It’s great to be CONUS!” A reality check every time I hear him say those words, it still warms my heart that he is thankful for the things we often overlook. In his thankfulness of being “CONUS,” I’m reminded that we have so much to be thankful for; he’s state-side, with family at home!

 

Never mind my grandmother’s China or the pumpkin pie, my husband reminds me of what is most important- our love for each other and the quality time spent with our children. This Thanksgiving I am not only going to be thankful that he is home, but I am going to be thankful that HE IS thankful to be home. I am thankful to be loved by a hero, and to be on his list of things that he is thankful for. I am thankful for the opportunity to love a warrior and to be loved by a warrior.


Reflection
What are you most thankful for?
Are there any people in your life that help you keep an attitude of ‘thankfulness’ despite your circumstances?
What is one thing you can thank God for today?

Prayer
Heavenly Father, thank You for the gift of my husband. Thank You for filling his heart with so much love for me and our children. Thank You for the special times we spend together. Bless and protect us when we are apart. Open my eyes to see the blessings all around me, and the ones I take for granted too often. Amen.


Heather Tabers is the wife of a wounded warrior and the mother of five children. She is also currently a full time student, a specialty cake baker, and a volunteer with the VA Public Relations office. She writes about her life and her faith to encourage other women on her blog, Wives of War