I was guest blogging at Over a Cup with Tara Wednesday. This is a great post if you are interested in learning a little more about my life journey as well!
Hello Over a Cup Readers!
If you are a regular reader you know that I live now in Vienna, Austria. My husband is the European Director of Operations for a great Non-Profit Organization called Eastern European Mission. We want everyone to have the Bible. This is an amazing organization that we are proud to be a part of. It is by the providence of God that we live here and have the opportunity to serve and work alongside many who have given up the lives they once had to build one in hopes of seeking and serving the lost fulltime. I always wanted to be in Missions but how it came about in my life is a testimony to who God is and how he works.
I thought for a long time that I knew God's plan for my life. I was born and raised in Colorado, my husband was born and raised in Poland. We met and married in Oklahoma. Once we were married we started planning and working towards moving to Warsaw to do Mission work. We even led yearly campaigns taking students and young adults to teach English there for a month. We worked toward building a team during that time as well.
We were blessed to celebrate our daughters first 4 birthdays with her grandparents in Warsaw. This always made it seem so real that we could one day have this life I dreamed of. Living abroad and sharing Jesus. As we all know things do not always go as plan. Proverbs 19:21 reminds us that we can
plan, but what matters is that God's purpose is accomplished. We also know that we are not given all of the details. This is where faith comes in. That is where we learn to trust him, and discover the peace and joy that only he can breathe into our lives. I will share my journey with you now.
We had a beautiful 2 year old daughter when I learned I was pregnant again. About 7 weeks into the
pregnancy we learned there were complications. A few weeks later they told me I had lost the pregnancy and I would miscarry at any time. I waited. I did not miscarry and I was showing and everything. I started to build up hope that the Doctors were wrong. After all, I clearly was pregnant RIGHT?? My cravings were strong, I was gaining weight and wearing maternity clothes. Then I started to feel sick, we went again to the Dr and she informed us that I would have to have the pregnancy removed. So I had a D & C. After a few days I felt normal again. My Dr called after my post-op appointment. I thought it was weird for her to call me since they said everything went well. She started out by saying..."If you were my sister I I would want you to meet with this Dr." Interesting, I thought to myself. She continued and explained that she did some extra tests on my blood and found something concerning.
As a result I was at OU hospital the following day. I remember how scared I was, and how that increased as I read through the 13 pages I needed to fill out prior to my first visit. It didn't take me long to realize this Dr was an Oncologist. Now I was scared. My husband and I went in and found out that I had what was a rare form of miscarriage/basically there was a cancer that prevented the baby from growing. I started Chemo the next day. It was meant to last about 2 weeks. I went through 3 types and 8 months of chemo. I lived life waiting to learn the numbers each week from the Dr. God's grace and the peace he gave me during those times kept me going along with the hope of my life after cancer. I never took my mind off of the idea dream that we would be moving to Poland shortly after this was over.
We had a team, we were preparing and planning for that next step. We already informed the church, family and friends we would be leaving. I had failed on form of Chemo and was on a 2nd experimental treatment, we traveled to Warsaw on a scouting trip and upon our return all but 1 person declared they were no longer interested. I was devastated. I was so sick, and now I was falling apart emotionally too. We can't move without a team. This can't be God's plan. I was determined it would all work out.
After a 3rd type of Chemo, I was declared Cancer free. The Dr said to me go and live like this never happened. Live a normal life. That is not possible. I was not the same person. I surveyed the remnants of my former life and turned my eyes again to Warsaw. Unfortunately, there was not a workable solution. We had to move on from the idea and accept that it was OUR idea and not HIS plan. So we came up with plan B. After all we had already begun the process of moving out of our life in OKC. We decided to move to my hometown, get out of ministry and into business.
With 3 job offers to consider my husband sat in his office and asked God to help him choose the one that would impact the Kingdom the most. The phone rang. A man from EEM was calling to ask for my husband to consider coming to work for them. They were looking for an Eastern European with a business degree and church experience in the US. WOW! It was hand made for him. He proceeded to say thanks, but we are moving in 2 weeks to Denver. Our electricity, telephone and cable were all scheduled to turn off. We were packing to move in with my parents down the road until we made the trip to Colorado. Again, thanks but we have other plans. Then he hung up and thought! Whoa, called them back and said I need to talk to my wife. He called me, came home and we talked.
Could it be that this is what we are supposed to do? We decided to pursue the possibility. It was tailor made for us. There were elements specific to each of us. In the end we took it and rebuilt our life in Vienna. Chemo was the chance I had giving me the most possibility of more kids. When we moved to Vienna our daughter was 4. When she was 6 after 4 years of wondering if it was possible. I was pregnant again. We held our breathe, prayed and waited. The heart started beating, the baby grew. We passed 14 weeks (the time I lost the other one). That was huge for me. I started to loose anxiety, and gain more faith. We watched the baby grow, learned he was a boy and rejoiced as he was born the day before his Daddy's birthday. God is good! His ways and plans are grander than our own. When my little guy was 17 months old, I discovered I was pregnant again. The second time there was more trust, no doubt and less fear. My baby girl is 8 months now. We have 3 kids and I have grown, changed and been blessed abundantly by the father. He taught me how he loves me, he strengthened me and showed me his peace.
Countless nights my tears ran into my pillow. My heart was full of pain and fear. He has taught me how good he is. He has shown me his plan for my life. He desires to give us the treasures of our hearts. He wants us to be who HE needs us to be. His ways will be passed on to my children and their children. His love endures forever. From Everlasting to everlasting the Lord shares his steadfast love with us.
I hope you were blessed by hearing my story. Have a great week!
Feel free to visit me and keep up with my busy little family @ www.notimefortea.com