Saturday, April 29, 2017

Fluid and Flexibility

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I have been told this my whole life!!!

And so I continue to learn how to be

Fluid 
&
Flexible!!

We worked our three weeks on, three weeks doesn't sound like much
but
21 DAYS!!!
now that's a long time.

We had 19 GREAT days!!!

The 20th and 21st days were a bit crazy!!!

But we made it!!!

We have had lots of changes in our home unit here at
Methodist Boys Ranch
but after the turmoil
we see the 
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Our home has had the same eight boys since last November.
In the past six weeks we have had three boys discharged leaving us with five boys.
Last Wednesday we got a new to us young man who has been on the ranch for quite awhile but due to some different circumstances he was moved into our unit.
1 ~ 14 year old
2 ~ 16 year olds
3 ~ 17 year olds

and anticipating some new changes in the next few weeks.

We have one graduating May 2017
and may be getting another 16 year old this coming week.

Some goodbyes are very hard to handle,
some we breathe a sigh of relief.

Our boys are not bad boys,
but the reality of things is that sometimes
the boys won't work the program,
sometimes their needs are more indepth than what we can handle
but through it all it is sad to see them go.

Sometimes we know where they are going,
sometimes we just know they were released to a different care facility
yet through it all we continue to pray for them.

We have had the opportunity to connect with eleven boys 
since we have been here at MCH.
Some connections have been wonderful,
some very difficult
but the constant through it all is knowing that each of the boys are  
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and for that we give 
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If you think of us,
please say a prayer
asking the Lord
to continue to give us the
love, grace and mercy
we need as we serve HIM
here at 
Methodist Boys Ranch.



Sunday, April 16, 2017

Easter with the Boys


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This morning we were up early as the chapel services started at 8:30 AM.
Surprised they all got up without any complaints.

The chapel service was a bit different
as we are just not used to Rap music celebrating the Risen Lord.
The message was great ~ it was on "The Last Word"
Pastor Ahmad asked how many like to get the last word,
nothing like four sets of eyes looking directly at me.
But they are right ~ I like to have the last word!!!

Pastor Ahmad challenged us to seek out what
"last words" 
we let rule our lives.

Is it a negative thought a parent or someone in authority spoke over you?
Or is the Lord saying "you are my precious child!"
and
it reminded me to be careful what the last words are 
each of the boys hear at night as they go to sleep,
when they get out of the van to go to class and 
even the first words they hear in the morning.

My prayer today is "Lord help me to put pleasant words/thoughts in the hearts of these young boys that you have entrusted to us to care for."

What "last words" are you letting direct your life today?

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In talking with the boys the past few days we were a bit surprised to hear two of them say they had never received an Easter basket ~ something we have provided for our children for too many years to count...but saddened to hear two of them didn't know what we were talking about.

So off to Dollar Tree and Walmart
I bought six little wooden baskets
and filled them with a chocolate bunny, peeps, jelly beans,
eggs filled with candy, malted eggs and of course a few of these

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The baskets were waiting for the boys when we returned from Chapel.

One of our boys even had tears and couldn't stop thanking us.

And all I could think of was Pastor Ahmad asking
What is your last word?

My last word to these boys is that we love you!!!

And though some days are hard
the better days out number them by lots.

We have three more sleeps to go and then we are off...
thinking back to the first day back on this 21 day shift I prayed
Lord help us to have the energy to get through
and He has more than answered that prayer.

And the many prayers of all of you.

As we go into the last 2.5 days on duty, 
we pray for continued peace in our home
and to be a light into these boys lives.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

End of Day has Come

What a roller coaster ride today has been!

First off the mountain top ~ 6 of our 7 boys met the requirement to go on the weekly outing.  Much better than last week where only two earned it!!

Down to the valley ~ finding dip, dip cans and spit bottles on the floor and hidden in a cut out of the van seat :(

And a little deeper ~ feeling so discombombulated on the inside ~ beginning week two of new eating habits, increased water intake and seeing
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everywhere!!!

I love Peeps!!!!
and feeling as crummy as I was 
I was so 
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But I did not succumb!!!

Instead I crawled into my bed and cried
and cried some more

Feeling alone, 
missing my coffee buddy,
missing a good friend to just vent, cry and pray together
missing Christian fellowship

And deeper into the valley I went ~
feeling alone in this journey as a Home Parent ~
questioning our values and beliefs,
wondering if our expectations are so high, they are unachievable?

So I began the climb back to the top of the mountain ~
one step at a time,
first journaling
what did I want?
what did I need?
how do I go about getting it?

So I sent an email,
I cried with Ron
I asked for prayer
and cried some more

And then life hit ~
boys home from school,
phone call from the 2nd in command,
explained some of my frustrations,
dealt with more boys coming home from school,
getting yelled at by a student because HE did something wrong,
more phone calls
and lack of information caused more tears to flow,
wanting to run,
so I ran to my hubby's arms,
he hugged me, we talked,
dealt with boys refusing to follow the program, 
talked to the 2nd in command AGAIN,
cried some more,
talked with and walked with my sweet hubby
(the one who shows me in tangible ways God's amazing love)

And met with the administrator of the ranch,
shared some of the issues,
discussed a young man and what to do,
cried and talked some more
(I really need to buy some stock in Kleenex)

Felt God's peace coming over me,
back to the unit,
put our plan in action,
concerned about hubby driving alone with said student
yet God heard that unspoken fear
and provided a second adult to ride with him
~~ thank you Lord for like minded thinking with others ~~

Went to dinner
Good Ole Comfort Food ~ homemade mac & cheese
only ate one serving
didn't give into really wanting a BIG second helping

Came back to the unit,
one boy working,
one boy to the gym,
leaving four boys playing games
and I got to watch
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One boy to the shower,
2nd boy to the shower,
2 boys watching survivor with me
2 boys playing minecraft
=
peaceful evening!

Back to the mountain top of
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Now six boys are in bed,
all is quiet on the homefront,

Reports can wait till morning.

Time to crawl into the loving arms of my hubby,
snuggle under the warm blankets,
and rest knowing that
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An Emotional Day

My day has been filled with tears and more tears.
Feeling lost and discombombulated.
Missing sweet fellowship with other believers

Heard ~ dreaming that will happen
Anxious ~ about most everything today

Missing girl talks, coffee dates,
and having a couch to sit on and just dump

Missing prayer partners in person
Missing good Christian fellowship

Missing!!!

So the tears fall,
snapping at others way too much.

Cried alligator tears into my pillow
feeling alone even though there are people around

Decisions, decisions, decisions.
Not wanting to disappoint others
Yet wondering where do I fit in

What about my feelings?
My fears?
My anxiety?

No more time to think
Boys coming home in minutes
Need to wipe away the tears
and put on the smiley face.

Going to be one of those nights of 
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God's Perfect Timing ~ Always

I am always amazed how the Lord puts things in my path  to remind me over and over that He is in control ALL the TIME!! This mornin...