James and Ben are having lots of "firsts" here in the USA.
James is doing cub scouts for the first time,
selling boy scout popcorn for the first time
learning to play the clarinet and is in the 5th grade band.
He's mowing the grass with a reel mower,
playing on a community soccer league,
experiencing cold weather for the first time ever..
Ben is playing American football for the first time,
going to a big high school for the first time,
carving a pumpkin for the first time in his memory,
getting ready for his first homecoming dance, having a job that pays for the first time,
experiencing cold weather for the first time in 12 years - he was five when we moved to the Philippines so life in the USA for him now is almost as new to him as it is to James..
Moving to the USA after 11 1/2 years overseas entails starting all over again - with bedding, blankets, towels, dishes, pots and pans, utensils, silverware, purchasing a car, obtaining coats for cold weather,..the list could go on..
but I want to attest to God's faithfulness and abundant grace and blessing..
I look around my house and see the hand of God everywhere.
Every piece of furniture, piece of silverware, dish, glass, towel, bedding tell the story of His grace, of how the Isrealites could walk the desert 40 years and have nothing wear out, of how His eye is on the sparrow and how He watches over me and my family, of how He knows the numbers of hairs on my head, He knows my name, and He, as a loving Dad, wants us to ask Him for needs and desires.
He has blessed beyond measure in this transition from Davao, Philippines to Goodrich, Michigan.
Furniture has been given to us, pulled from storage, found along the roadside as someone is throwing out items no longer needed, or purchased at incredibly low prices from yard sales and thrift shops.
The same story holds true for silverware, glasses, dishes, towels, bedding, and clothing.
One morning I was telling my Abba I'd really like a cheese grater and later that same day a neighbor from across the street came over with some pots, a cheese grater, and some silverware asking if I'd like all those items..of course I said 'yes' and thanked her for the blessing and thanked my Abba God for His provision.
And Psalm 145 plays through my head often - “I will extol You my God and King and bless Your name forever and ever. Every day I will bless You and praise Your name forever and ever. Great are You, Lord, and greatly to be praised and Your greatness is unsearchable. One generation shall commend Your works to another and declare Your mighty acts. On the glorious splendor of Your majesty, and on Your wondrous works, I will meditate. They shall speak of the might of Your awesome deeds, and I will declare Your greatness....”
We moved to the states the end of May and into a house the beginning of August. In the meantime, this blog program crashed, but my handsome computer husband has resolved the issue, so hopefully it will stay up and running and you'll hear more from me than you have these past few months.
Transition is never easy. We've been living in packing mode and out of suitcases since early May - and to be honest its really old now....but thankfully, we are unpacking and settling into a house we recently purchased in the village of Goodrich.
The boys are registered for school and start August 27. They'll be going to Goodrich public school - high school for Ben, grade 11 and Oaktree Elementary for James, grade 5. Ben is playing American football this year and has had two weeks of practice. He's enjoying playing this sport which he hasn't played before.
James is signed up to play soccer which starts the end of August. Both boys are making friends and the lonliness they were experiencing when we first moved is easing up a bit with the increase of friends in the neighborhood and at church.
It is such a blessing to be together again as a family.
We are so thankful for the many items that have been given to us for moving into the house - furniture, friends who helped us move, clothing, dishes.... we are so thankful for God's provision and watchcare.
The minute the wheels of the airplane touched US soil at the Detroit Metro Airport, James was officially a US Citizen!
Immigration went well and we are ALL in the states - in Michigan. Happy to be together as a family again.