Horn Happenings

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Location: San Antonio, Texas, United States

Saturday, January 20, 2007

SETTLED AND SCHEDULED . . . SOMEWHAT

Ecclesiastes 3:1 has been a verse of comfort during our many transition periods these past few years by its constant reminder that “[t]o every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.” Times of transition are not over, nor will they ever be, but how grateful we are to feel settled and somewhat scheduled in our home – our base of operations. Life’s storms are so much easier to bear when an ordered home awaits to provide respite after the day’s battle.

Sometimes one doesn’t value the blessings they have until those blessings are removed for a season. Living in the same house year after year allows a certain schedule and order to develop which can easily be taken for granted; at least that is what I did. After moving cross-country, dealing with escalating issues with our grandfather which resulted in eventual placement, and then moving again, our lives felt ruled by the tyranny of the urgent. Projects, studies, even major housecleaning were all put on the back-burner of daily life as we sometimes struggled to stay afloat and manage all the new responsibilities. But that is when the comfort found in Ecclesiastes chapter 3 would buoy us onward as we remembered that God gives us different seasons of life, and during this particular time we might not be able to accomplish larger tasks or be as faithful in our studies as before. It is not an easy lesson to learn, but one that I am grateful God chose to teach us.

As the year 2007 dawns, it promises to be as full and exciting as previous years, but somewhat scheduled as well. Although interruptions, changes and challenges of magnitudes I cannot even imagine will come throughout the year, it feels good to at last have a scheduled system in place that will help achieve greater productivity and learning during these next several months. Flexibly scheduled is how we desire to live, but always remembering that God might choose to take us down the path of drastic transition at any time He sees fit. We might prefer the “time of peace,” but always shall be ready for the “time of war.”

On another note, this past week has seen a great decline in the health of our grandfather. He is now completely confined to his bed. A few months ago he fell resulting in a broken hip and surgical replacement. Due to his dementia, successful rehabilitation was not possible, and he has grown steadily worse since that time. Last week he was hospitalized due to severe dehydration and pneumonia which had developed in one lung. No longer able to eat or drink, today a feeding tube is being surgically inserted into his body. His recovery from the pneumonia is almost complete and he soon will be discharged and returned to the nursing home. We know not whether the Lord will take him quickly or allow him to remain on this earth, but we are praying that His will be done. What a comfort it is to know that our grandfather loves the Lord, and that even with his dementia his greatest desire was to go home to be with his Father. Once again Ecclesiastes 3 rings true as it explains that there is “[a] time to be born, and a time to die.” Sometimes the “time to die” goes slowly while you see life gradually flow from the body, resulting in a time to watch and cry.

~Cara

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

SNOWBOUND IN SAN ANTONIO

Ok, ok, we’re not really snowbound but that sounds ever so much better than icebound. :)

Due to extreme temperatures for Texas, a lot of the major roads in our area are closed because of the sparkling, deadly layer of ice. Last night as the temperature dropped we gathered in our familyroom to eat dinner before the fireplace, determined to enjoy each and every ounce of winter weather. Keeping our house at a frosty 58 degrees caused us to huddle even closer to the warmth of our first ever fire. After living for so many years in an old, drafty house, there is something special about layering clothes and wrapping up in blankets which brings a warm, fuzzy feeling to my heart. Some might complain about the unusually cold weather here, but to our family these few days are a little gift from the Lord.

Last night felt like we were on vacation. After dinner I sat on the floor in front of the hearth and watched the flames dance while listening to some peaceful music. John later joined me and we both curled up in front of the fire while joining Mom and Dad in listening to Kevin Swanson’s lecture “Suffer the Children” from the Uniting Church and Family Conference last year. Feeling the flames flicker across my face in the darkened room, with most of my dear family sharing in the experience, caused such a sense of gratefulness to God for His gifts of family, fire and frosty weather.

While we are icebound here in San Antonio, Tim is enjoying is own (and much prettier) version of winter in Colorado while on a ski/snowboarding trip with a group of friends from around the country. Poor guy, he always seems to miss out on winter weather in San Antonio, but we’re not feeling too bad for him with all that snow in the Rockies. :)

Well, I’m off to do some baking. There is nothing like a cold day which encourages one to don an apron and crank up the oven. Farewell for now from icy San Antonio.
~Cara

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

HAPPY BIRTHDAY . . . TWO DAYS LATE

January 7, 1995 - a day we had hoped, waited and prayed would come for a very long time at last arrived. At nearly half-past four in the morning Mom gave birth to the little boy who would bring us all so much joy and laughter. With John carefully snuggled in Mom’s arms, Dad led the family in a very meaningful song of praise to God as we sang the Doxology together in the hospital room. After over seven years we had a baby again in our home!

Twelve years (and two days) have passed and still we are incredibly grateful for the gift of John. His love, laughter and little caring ways continually bless our family. It’s been a real joy and privilege to watch him grow up from a pudgy baby into a tall, lean young man of twelve with a heart for the things of the Lord. He hopes to pass Mom and I in height within the next year or two, but we shall have to see about that. :)

Happy Bithday, John!
~Cara