Update on our “new life” :)

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Well, it’s been about 9 weeks since Karie and her kids came to live with us…and I can’t believe I’m just now writing an update! It’s a little crazy around here!! Now that the kids are out of school, things have slowed down some, but it still seems like non-stop activity in this house!

The first 6 weeks were pretty rough, I’ll be honest. We had SO many adjustments to make…combining 2 large families from 2 completely different worlds. It seemed like every time I turned around there was another “issue” to deal with. Lots of conflicts, between the kids and also between Karie and myself. We kept having “family meetings”….giving people a chance to air their concerns. We’d work through one issue, and immediately be faced with the next one. Honestly, I felt like I was drowning in “issues”!

The most difficult part was that I was meeting resistance from Karie. She didn’t like being told what to do! And even though I hate conflict and didn’t want to tell her what to do, it came with the territory. Bringing 6 people into our home meant that we had to constantly explain how we do life. It also meant that they needed to learn how to adapt to doing things they’d never done before. The longer it went on, the more resistant they became. Karie’s attitude gradually got worse and worse until things came to a head.

A couple weeks ago, she and I got into a heated argument, and she said she was just going to leave. I had seen it coming, and didn’t try to stop her. I really didn’t know how to make this work. We were offering her a new life, but it meant she was going to have to make some changes. If she wasn’t willing to do that, I didn’t see how it could work.Then right in the middle of this huge discussion, the phone rang. It was our pastor, Peter Hubbard, and he was asking if Karie would be willing to share her testimony that Sunday at church! We were going out of town for Memorial Day weekend, so that wasn’t going to work, but that phone call changed everything. I went to her and told her about the call. She was visibly shaken by it, and ran out of the room. I’m not sure how it happened, but after that, she came to me, broken and completely sorry for her attitude. It’s weird, but it’s as if God used that call to remind her that He is up to something BIG in her life, and she was fighting Him. She apologized to me, and has since apologized to each person in our family, and has had a complete change of heart since that day. We laugh now about how she was running out the door and God grabbed her and said “Where do you think you’re going?” 🙂

We still have issues and it’s still a challenge, but our hearts are on the same page now. Karie has a deeper sense of humility, and I have more compassion. And amazingly, as she and I are growing and working together, the kids are changing too! They are so much more respectful and cooperative. We are all experiencing so much more peace. It’s just so amazing to see God work like this and experience His life-transforming power!

Please continue to pray for us as we “take up His call to be part of the most important thing happening in the universe: REDEMPTION.” (Paul David Tripp, Instruments in the Redeemer’s Hands)

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4 Responses to “Update on our “new life” :)”

  1. Cindy Leigh Wilson Says:

    Wow Charity! I finally made it here to get an update and what a great update it is! My favorite part about it is the honesty of it all. Having had a young woman live with us for about 8 months I can relate to a lot of what you must be facing. Our house guest did not have any children with her, but she was dealing with several issues. Trying to recover from drug addiction seemed to be the priority at the time, but looking back there was so much more. Her time ended one evening with an empty room in our house and a short thank you note with little other explanation. It wasn’t until much later that we learned all that had been happening which led to her abrupt decision.

    Many people asked me if I regretted opening up our home to her. I could only say that at the time we made the decision, we were not saying yes to her, but yes to God. People had a lot to say about the negative affect that it might have had on our home life etc., but again, we left that up to God. He knew our hearts and He knew her needs. He divinely brought her to us as a stranger with literally no where else to go. Hearing how you and Don are handling things makes me feel like we failed in our communication with her. Yet, in my heart there are no regrets. It was a learning time, a blessed time, a painful time….all in all it was God’s time for us to practice our faith.

    I have talked with her since and she reports that she has been sober for over a year now. Another Christian woman has taken her in and is trying to help her get on her feet. There is so much more to her testimony and I pray she will one day be ready to share it with boldness for the glory of God. When that day comes, we will not be able to say that we were the ones who helped turn her life around. As Christians, we all know that is not the “praise” we seek when we serve Him anyway. But we will know, as a family, that we had been willing to say yes to God’s calling to reach out to one of the wounded ones in this world. And we will share all the more in the joy of her testimony because we were blessed to travel along side her for part of her journey.

    I didn’t mean to make this comment so long, but I thought there might come a time when someone says something that might make you doubt opening up your home and family to Karie and her children. I wanted to affirm you through our experience.

    We will be praying for Karie to continue to feel God’s grace and to stay close to God as He works out His purpose and plan for her life. I know it has to be hard for her in her position. I admire her for not walking out that night. I also admire you and for keeping the communication lines open with your family meetings. Our family will continue to pray for both you and Don. You are a blessing to so many….most importantly I think you will find you are a blessing to your children by walking out your faith instead of just speaking it. I have heard how awesome your kids are and I don’t wonder why.

    Love and prayerful support,
    Cindy Leigh

  2. Charity Says:

    Thanks so much, Cindy, for speaking these words of encouragement and affirmation! I DID need to hear that! Every word of it!!

    I didn’t even know you guys had done something like this! It’s funny, we’ve already had people question us. Karie has had people question her too. Cracks me up when people say, “do you know how hard this is going to be?” hahahaha! NO, actually, I don’t…and that’s probably a good thing! All I know is that God is the One who has orchestrated it, so I can trust that it’s exactly what we all needed! And who knows how far-reaching the effects may be??

    For your situation, too, Cindy! You probably won’t know–until you get to heaven–just how far-reaching the effects of your obedience have been. Yes, what God calls us to do is often hard! But we serve a GOOD God! So we can know- without a doubt- that what He’s up to is GOOD!! 🙂

  3. Dee Hall Says:

    Josh came down the other day and we talked. I had meant to call you and check on you or FB you but we have had one thing after another here and so it did not get done. However, I knew you were still experiencing difficulty. I just felt it.
    Then when Josh came down the other day he said things had settled down some.
    So glad that God knows best.
    We admire your family as you endeavor to walk this journey. We will continue to pray for you guys and Karie and her family.
    love and prayer,
    Dee

  4. Charity Says:

    Thanks so much, Dee. God is really doing some amazing things…in all of us! Please keep us in your prayers! I know the enemy does not want this to work, so please pray that God will protect us and give us unity and fill us all with His peace! Thanks!!

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