God always surrounds our family with adventure and excitement, it just doesn’t come in the usual forms of adventure and excitement, such as rock-climbing and hiking in the mountains.
For us, adventure and excitement looks like daily living. Each and every child God has blessed us with brings adventure and excitement to our lives. We never know what each day will hold. Maybe it’s a pizza and bowling birthday party.
Or maybe it’s a day at the lake with friends who are so gracious to invite our big family every summer their beautiful (and fun!) lake house.
Or maybe the thrill of flying airplanes is the best adventure of all!
Or maybe adventure is just daily living with joys such as bubbles. And love. And milestones. And challenges. And, yes, even things such as pooping, biting, and hitting. Adventure!
While we never know what each season of our lives will look like, we live each moment trusting fully that God is our guide, He knows the plans He has for us, and He will give us all we need, our daily bread. Some seasons are more challenging than others, but He is always by our sides, encouraging us to keep trekking through the adventure of life.
This year, God has brought us to a season of exceedingly abundantly, a season of blessing beyond compare, meeting our needs and providing far more than we could ever think or dream of asking. Oh how wonderful it feels to enter such a season, as the season following losing Chrissie on May 19, 2010, has been the hardest season He’s ever asked us to adventure through with Him.
Of course, God has been oh-so-faithful, every step of the way. But even with His faithfulness, sometimes we get stuck in those valleys, believing this is what life will be from here on out. But He has a plan to give us life abundantly, and while it may take days, months, even years for the season to change, He is faithful to lead us from the valley to the mountain top. (Adventuring through life with God never means staying on the mountain top, but it’s great fun to enjoy the view while it lasts!)
We are so excited that God has asked us to home school Cooper and Conner this school year. While this means more work for us, He has given us the help we need to make this possible. He has placed excitement in our hearts, and He has lined up so many wonderful opportunities for these precious sons of ours.
God used this summer to bring us to this new seasons with Cooper and Conner. While they had an excellent year in public school last year with much progress, we flat out missed them in our home!!! God began showing us His new plan for this school year, and He has allowed everything to fall in to place beautifully.
We have some new therapies in our home: music therapy and ABA (Applied Behavioral Analysis) therapy! (These are in addition to physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy.) Cooper LOVES, LOVES, LOVES music, and it was always a goal for him to receive music therapy. God has blessed us with a wonderful music therapist who will be working with the boys every Saturday morning.
I have been praying for months to find an ABA therapist to help us with the boys, but time and time again, the plans would fall through due to expense and logistics and availability (there’s an 18-month waiting list in our area for in-home ABA, and this is not covered by insurance). There are some orphanage-learned (institutional) behaviors we haven’t been able to extinguish, and as the boys get older and bigger and stronger, it’s more and more important to find successful ways to modify behaviors, but we were fresh out of new ideas and methods, which made me pray more for an ABA therapist to help us figure things out.
A couple of months ago, God introduced me to an ABA therapist at our church who visited with her family. I had no idea she was an ABA therapist, but God told me to encourage this visitor by complimenting her on how good she was with her sons (who are autistic). That’s when I learned that she’s an ABA therapist with a ministry to provide in-home ABA training to families in our area!!! That’s God for you! Exceedingly abundantly more than we can think or ask!!!
This wonderful ABA therapist is a Believer who prays for God to help her to see what types of methods/programs to use with each child. She is now training us to do ABA therapy in our home with Cooper and Conner. A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!!!!!!
Oh my, ABA therapy is A LOT of work!!! From gathering reinforcement toys to organizing notebooks and schedules, there’s much work to be done. Ideally, each boy will receive six hours/day of ABA instruction in our home. This is such a fabulous program where they’re learning proper behaviors while learning skills and meeting educational goals simultaneously, all using positive reinforcement. Wow, we’re impressed. And completely overwhelmed.
So that’s where God has us. Full of love, life, and adventure. Exceedingly, abundantly. As I ponder my 42 years of life (celebrating 42 today!!!), I’m more grateful than ever for my life and all the children, family, friendships, and relationships God has blessed me with.