Monday, July 20, 2015

Tenez Bon

My mom has a small, hand-stitched saying framed at her house. It says "Tenez Bon". Roughly translated this means "hold on" or "prevail". A dear friend gave it to her as encouragement when she was going through her first battle with cancer.

The story behind it is that this friend, French Canadian by birth, had a mother who would accept no complaints until her children could tell her at least one good thing that happened that day. The children would come home from school, ready to complain about how their day went or how much homework or chores they had; but, their mother would say to them "Tenez bon! Tell me one good thing that happened today!". 

As a family, we have had some challenging months recently. And I have shared our challenges as well as some of our good times. But as I look back, I noticed that I am not nearly as grateful for the every day graces God gives me. I have allowed myself to be worn down and have lost sight of the good moments that are part of each day.

So here it goes, these are the wonderful things that have happened to us in the midst of our tough times:
  • I have developed a more personal, deeper, stronger relationship with God. I have learned how to allow Him into the gaps in my life and to just be still and wait for Him.
  • My husband and I have drawn nearer to God and, in turn, nearer to each other. Our marriage has thrived during this time and we have reached levels of commitment and closeness that we could not have under any other circumstances.
  • I have witnessed the redeeming grace of God in a deeply personal way.
  • I have realized a lifelong dream of being able to stay home with and homeschool my children.
  • We have reconnected with old friends, both local and long distance. God has rebuilt connections and used these relationships to support us and walk with us down this difficult part of our path.
  • We have discovered that there is more to a job than the salary. There is so much value in the relationships Rick is building and has built at PIU. His co-workers friends work family has prayed over us, come alongside us in hard times and celebrated with us in good times. 
  • I have reached out to and been met by my "mommy-friends" in my most desperate hours of need and in my times of great rejoicing. God has placed beautiful, godly women in my path to pray with me and for me, give me godly advice, and share all of the messy beautiful moments along the way.
  • Our family is growing closer and stronger. We are still messy and loud, but we are fiercely loyal to one another and committed to being better for each other and for God.
  • I have fallen more deeply in love with my husband than I ever thought possible.
  • God provides. In big ways. In tangible ways. Every single day.