Sunday, October 27, 2013

A Final Letter to my Father in Law

Yesterday we said goodbye, but I never really felt we had the chance to say hello. For years I listened to the stories of your life, you touched the hearts of many.

I never knew you during the days of the Resurrection House; the days your charismatic personality and love for God reached out to the hurting and the lost.  You were deeply loved by many.

Time changed things; you changed, everyone changed, some for the better and some for the worse.  It’s all just a part of history now.

We met not long after you had begun a new journey in your life.  You did not want your son to marry me.  There was nothing I could have said or done to meet your approval.  I want to believe that your love for your son and your own personal pain would not allow you to accept me for who I was.
You preached surrender to God but you didn't share with me the joy or the love that described you in the past.  I wanted so badly to meet that man, if even for just a day.

You continued to give of your time and money, to strangers.  Your family missed you.  You missed our wedding, the birth and adoption of your grandchildren, the holidays and the birthdays.  You missed knowing the man that your son became.   What a tremendous loss for you.

For the words and actions that hurt so deeply, I forgive you.  I hold no bitterness or anger toward you.

Today I grieve your passing; the passing of my husband’s father.  I grieve the loss that my children never really met you; their grandfather.  I grieve and have hope because even amidst the mistakes and suffering, you knew that you needed a savior.  You knew that it was not by anything you did that you could enter heaven.  You knew that by grace we can become the children of God.  We did not share much but the most important thing we shared was Jesus.

Rest in peace Bun; we will meet again and it will be new and good.  I look forward to saying Hello. 

With love,

Barbara, your Daughter-in Law

Friday, October 25, 2013

National EB Awareness Week

In 2006, the U.S. Senate and Congress declared that the last week of October would become the National Epidermolysis Bullosa Awareness Week.  The purpose in setting this week aside was to:

  • Support the goals and ideals of EB awareness week 
  • Raise public awareness and understanding of EB.
  • Recognize the need for a cure
  • Encourage people to support the week through ceremonies and activities to promote awareness
  • Foster an understanding of the impact the disorder has on patients and their families
To help you better understand the impact of EB, I would like to share the following video with you.  In it you will see many of AJ's friends that battle EB and those that have not survived the disorder.

We are also excited to share the first children's book, that was recently published, about EB.  In honor of EB we will be donating the book to AJ's elementary school.

Thank you again for the support you provide us.  We are thankful that God has brought AJ into our family and that He has shown us, as the song describes,  

Blessings in Disguise.

I'll close with a picture of our little (Big) blessing.  Maybe someday he will be the doctor instead of the patient.  


Monday, October 21, 2013

Changing Leaves

The leaves here in MN have changed to a dusky brown with a few yellows left.  The seasons are changing and we can feel winter in the air.  This reminds me of how our lives are filled with change.  Often I feel like I am on a ride where I might prefer to slow down for just a bit.  Just as the wind is whipping the leaves into a cyclone; life can sometimes feel the same.  How good it is that God is constant; He does not change.  We can be assured of his love and provision. God's word is a treasure that I hold fast to.  I can rest in the knowing that God is able to keep what I have committed and I rejoice in knowing that the day of my full redemption is coming.  I am persuaded of that!

I Timothy 1:12 states,
I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day.

While I wait...I'm not so good at waiting...but while I wait, much is happening.  Here are some of the highlights of this past six months;
  • AJ graduated from preschool.  It was an exciting day for everyone.
  • Katie graduated from Bethlehem College & Seminary.  We had a great time of celebration at her commencement and we are excitedly watching God's plans unfold in her life.
  • We were able to do some traveling this summer, including to our favorite vacation spot in Grand Marais.
  • We had a Shaw family reunion at our home this summer.  It was so great to be able to visit with each person that came.  

  • Sadly my father suffered a stroke this summer.  We are thankful for the partial recovery that God has brought and we continue to pray for He and my Mom; daily life is harder for both of them.  Our dependence on God deepens during these experiences that push us beyond what we thought we could bear and God provides the grace to keep moving forward.
  • AJ has had an entire 12 months free of hospitalizations.  This is a first for AJ and we are so thankful for God's mercy over him.  He is in the 75% on the growth charts; an uncommon threshold for a child with EB.
  • AJ began Kindergarten and is loving every minute. He is surrounded by friends and knows he is loved by many
  • We have a new Granddaughter, Nora Bea Fischer.  She is beautiful and we are so thankful for her.

We have many reasons to celebrate life and along with the changing of the seasons, we sometimes experience sorrow. Scott's father is very close to leaving this earth and meeting his heavenly father.  It is with sorrow and rejoicing that we prepare for this change.  We are so thankful that God is with us every step of the way.

We are excited about the good news we hear from California regarding Arianna.  We are told that the process is again moving along and it is possible that she will be here by Christmas.  I would like to share a story that helps shed some light into her life the past four years.
  • It is rare that Arianna has any opportunity to take part in activities outside of the hospital care center where she lives.  Last month, she had the special opportunity to visit a zoo.  It was in the evening that they visited, as she does not handle the heat well.  Her nurse was directing her to look at a zoo animal but Arianna continued to look off in another direction.  Her nurse told her to look in the direction of the animal but Arianna responded by saying, "No, look at this!  It is the moon!  I have never seen the moon before!"
How incredible and how sad.  A little six year old girl having never seen the moon.  We can't wait to show her the many, many things that God has for her; the adventures to experience and the love of a family. Please continue to pray for us, that we will soon be united together.  We do have a financial need regarding Arianna's placement.  Due to the delays in her adoption, we recently needed to update our adoption/foster care home study.  This was an unexpected $900 cost and if anyone would like to contribute, we welcome the assistance to Arianna's adoption fund.  Donations can be mailed to: Scott and Barbara Fischer, 902 Beachwood Court NE, Stewartville, MN  55976

I encourage you to keep looking for the beauty that God provides during the changing of seasons in our lives. Last evening I walked around my neighborhood while the wind was blowing and a light rain was coming down.  The weather matched my mood to a certain extent.  I shared my sorrow with the Lord and then turned around to see the most beautiful tree.  It was a vibrant red against the backdrop of an emerging darkness.  I thought the beautiful colors of the season were gone but I was wrong.  Here stood this beautiful tree; a reminder of God's beauty even in the darkness.  

A Time for Everything       Ecclesiastes 3  (English Standard Version ESV)

 For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: 

a time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;
 a time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
 a time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
 a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
 a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
 a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
 a time to love, and a time to hate;
a time for war, and a time for peace.

What gain has the worker from his toil?  I have seen the business that God has given to the children of man to be busy with.  He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man's heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end.  I perceived that there is nothing better for them than to be joyful and to do good as long as they live; also that everyone should eat and drink and take pleasure in all his toil—this is God's gift to man.

Thanks again for reading about our journey,