Sunday, July 31, 2011


Why do we hate separation? Children hate being separated from their parents, like our one year old son who panics sometimes when Jessica or l leave the room. We all hate being separated from those we love, like when a young man goes to serve in the military or a young woman moves out of the house to live with her new husband. We also hate being separated from the things and the places that mean a lot to us, like a family home or the country we love.

I was reflecting on this a few nights ago after we took our oldest son, Kian, to the airport. He left the Philippines to go to The Master’s College in the U.S. We are very proud of Kian and excited for this new chapter in his life, but it is a bitter sweet time because we won’t get to watch him mature each day as we had for the last eighteen years, and now we will not be able to see him make his mark on the world. Although we are family, our family is forever changed. It

will never be quite the same. I suspect that in some ways, things will be even better as Kian grows into the man God made him to be; perhaps even having his own family someday.

However, when we sit around a table with our other five children at a restaurant, one

less seat will be occupied. When we pile into the van, there will be one less face in my rear view mirror. And as the voices compete with each other to share with me how their day went, there will be one less waiting to get a word in. I know we have the internet and various ways to communicate today, but it won’t be quite the same and I must say that I don’t enjoy the separation. I suppose I better understand how my mom felt when we left our home seven years ago to serve as missionaries.

These feelings of dislike of separation got me thinking about how horrible it will be for those who see the glory of God at judgement only to be separated from Him for eternity because of their refusal to acknowledge God for who He is. They will forever have burned in their eyes the

sight of the most beautiful and awesome being whom they will never be able to

see or approach again. How sad to see the beauty of God and then to go through eternity knowing that your own choices permanently separated you from Him. This makes the sorrow of being separated from my son by his leaving for college seem insignificant. It also reminds me of the urgency to warn others of the consequences of their choices.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Kicking and Fighting

Two held her down while two others attacked her. She begged to be let go and cried "Get me out of here!" as blood began to run down her head. However, we couldn't give into her request. As much as it hurt, it was for her best, so Jessica and I helped hold her down as the doctor and her assistant pulled her skin together with three stitches.

Jessica and I were actually glad that we missed the call and text from our oldest son while we were on our way home from teaching a Preaching class. Though only 30 minutes away, it would have been a torturous ride if we had read what Kian wrote. Only after walking in our room and finding our four year old Isabella happily playing and with a bandage on her head did we find the text and missed call. The text read, "Don't want to worry you, but Bella fell from the top bunk and split her head open. Lots of blood, 3quarter of an inch gash, but minimal pain, and no panic what so ever. She's got a bandage but will likely need to go in for stitches in the morning."

It had already been a long day and Kian had assured us that he googled 'stitches' on the internet and learned that we had eight to twenty four hours to take her to the hospital, so there was no need to go to the hospital until the morning (it was already almost 9pm). Even though we were tired and Kian is a pretty responsible eighteen year old young man (headed for college next week), I decided to investigate myself. He was right about what the web said, but I wanted to check out her cut myself. It took about one second for me to say "Get your shoes on, were going to the hospital". Just below her hairline above her right eye, the gash was about an inch long and a quarter of an inch wide at it's center. It was fairly deep, needed to be closed and I wasn't taking any chances with my baby girl. If you are not squeamish, can handle the sight of blood and are curious then you can click here to see Bella's cut, otherwise just read on.

While we struggled to hold her down on a table in the hospital emergency room, I couldn't help being reminded of how we do the same thing when God tries to help us. Our fear and lack of understanding causes us to kick, scream and fight against Him when He is only seeking our best and only trying to help us. We often fight Him like a scared and confused little child. Even with medication to numb the wound, my ipad playing the movie "Toy Story" next to her and promises of balloons and candy, she still struggled and cried.

Three stitches later her terrifying ordeal was over.

It wasn't long till she was her sweet and happy self, exclaiming that o so familiar phrase, "Can I have a snack now?" Like a master manipulator, she milked the moment as best she could (who wouldn't, I suppose?). First, she worked the doctor for three surgical gloves: two to take home and one to have blown up like a balloon. Then, after settling with the hospital, we proceeded to the pharmacist for medicine and snacks. Once again, all was well as Bella drank her favorite chocolate milk and ate a candy bar. We didn't take anymore pictures that night, but here is one of her usually smiling face.