Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Waiting: My Story: Part 1

     If you had told me last year that I'd be engaged by December of this year, I wouldn't have believed you! I've had my moments, when I doubted Gods plans for me, and doubted that I'd ever be in a relationship, much less, married!
     In July of this year,(2014) I wrote a blog post for my birthday: http://daughterofdestiny ... in this blog post, I have another perspective on the little things of life that God blessed me with throughout this last year, instead of looking at it as, an un-married woman.
     After I wrote that blog post, about 2 weeks later, I saw Mark Robinette and his family at a church Family Camp. I met Mark earlier that year, when he came to Russia with us, so I was excited that he was going to be one of the speakers at the Family Camp. Him and my dad were talking at one of the tables one morning, and when Mark waved for me to come over, he began telling me all about this young man, "Joshua Narwold". He kept saying how Josh would be a perfect match for me to marry! I was very doubtful, because, I didn't think there was any
chance that I could meet this young man, because after all, when was I going to be going to Ohio?!
     I gave Mark my blog name, and apparently, he called Josh almost immediately, and told him to look at my blog, and get to know my family. Josh called my dad about a week later, letting my dad know that his intentions were serious, and that he wanted to get to know me, with the intention of marriage.
     Josh came out on September 5th, to meet me and my family. He stayed in Colorado through the weekend, and we clicked immediately, and were pretty comfortable talking with each other. After he left, we started to chat via-Facebook, and talk on the phone. My mom and I went out to Ohio on October 5th, to see him, his brother and sister-in-law, and his church friends/community. As my mom puts it, "When we left Ohio, Caitlin's heart stayed with it." :) Coming back to Colorado was very sad for me, because I really felt at home there in Ohio. I was welcomed as part of the family. Josh and I continued to chat and talk on the phone daily, and got to know each other pretty well. He came out to Colorado again in November, and as usual, our time was wonderful! In December, my parents and I would fly out to Wisconsin to meet the rest of his family, and little did I know, it was going to be on that trip, that he'd propose. I've had my share of times that I felt like I'd never be married for several reasons, which I'll go over next blog post. I'd like to leave you with this Bible Verse from Lamentations 3:25-26, "The Lord is good to those who wait for Him, to the soul who seeks Him. It is good that one should hope and wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord."

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Keeping Christ in Christmas

     Christmas approaches very fast! It's not uncommon anymore to hear "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas". What happened? Jesus is no longer the reason for the season any more. Now, it's true that we should celebrate Christ birth and resurrection every day, not just on the "specific days"; but when did it become too much to hear, "Merry Christmas!"
     A couple days ago, I watched a video of what kids thought Christmas was about, and who they thought Jesus was, what kind of gifts He was brought...etc.. It was extremely disappointing to see how far mis-lead these kids were. You heard some of them say that Jesus was brought lots of money, and clothes; and you heard some kids say that Jesus came as a king riding on a camel. It's very unfortunate that some kids aren't taught the real meaning of Christmas.
     Last week, after going to the store, an older man greeted me with, "Happy Holidays!" I almost said Happy Holidays back, but stopped myself and said, "Merry Christmas!" instead. He looked at me like I was crazy, and moved on. I couldn't help but wonder, what changed? Why have we stopped using Christ in Christmas? Christmas isn't a time for presents, trees, lights, goodies, and such. (although that's fun too!) But, the real reason why we celebrate Christmas, is because we celebrate Jesus coming down to this earth, in the form of "Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger." (Luke 2:12,16)
     "And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night, and behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid. Then the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign to you; You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger." And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying: "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men!" (Luke 2:7-14)
     Let's not forget the real reason why we celebrate Christmas! And this Christmas season, let's keep Christ in the Center! After all, He's the reason for the season! :) Have a wonderful Christmas everyone!

Monday, December 15, 2014

I'm Engaged!!! :)

     Hello all! This past week, my parents and I went to visit Josh Narwold and his family in Wisconsin. While there, Josh got down on one knee, and asked me to marry him! :) Of course, I said yes!!!
     The Proposal Story (the short version):
     My parents and I arrived in Milwaukee,Wisconsin around lunch. We all went to Josh's parents house for lunch, stayed there for a couple hours, and then Josh said that he was ready to go. We planned ahead of time, that he was going to show me the indoor botanical gardens. We arrived there, and walked through the Christmas themed first, then the desert themed, and then the Tropical Themed. As we were walking, he was talking about how we first met, and his thoughts about me. He asked if I wanted to sit down on the bench for a little bit, and he continued to talk. After a little bit, Josh got down on one knee, and asked me to marry him! :)
   Apparently, Josh had it all set up to take our engagement pictures at the gardens by their family friend, Laura, whom they'd grown up with. It was quite the beautiful day! :) I can't wait to Marry the man of my life, and I'm so grateful to God for bringing Josh into my life! I love you Joshua Narwold!!! :)

Our Goodbye's at the airport. :(

Sunday, December 7, 2014

The Power Of Prayer

     When we pray, what do we usually pray about? Is it things we want or need? Is it to heal someone over sickness, doubt, loneliness, anger, or bitterness?
     Recently, I was looking over my old prayer journal's; A journal that I started writing in, a couple years ago. of my prayer request, struggles, concerns, and thoughts to God. Looking back on them always amazes me how faithful God really is... even in the dark times.
     I couldn't help but look back on my life, think, ponder, and reflect on how God had used every instance for His glory. At the time, I didn't understand it, but after looking through all my journal entries, I have those "ah ha" moments that God brought back to my mind. Those moments of confusion, and chaos became clear to me, what God was doing.
     Reflecting back, I wondered, was I praying out of love, or pure selfishness? Was it from my heart, or out of hate and anger? Sometimes, it was a mix of emotions, and sometimes out of peacefulness and tranquility.
     God hears every prayer that we say... whether on paper or out loud. Prayer is conversation with God. Prayer can be the internal voice that directs the external action. The weather may be bad, and the economy may be bad, but even then God is still good!
     Have you ever had those moments when you want to cry out to God, "I need help!" but fear and pride get in the way? A pride that says, "I can't do it!" When it should be, "God, I need help, only You can do it!" That silent plea inside us all to surrender, unto Christ.
     "I practiced what I call, "Let go and let God." I took my hands and cupped them in front of me, held them up, and verbally put inside those hands everything I was fretting over and didn't have any answers to. I said out loud as I held up both hands, "There it is, Lord, I give it all to you."... As I dropped my arms to my side, a wonderful feeling of serenity suddenly spread throughout my entire being. I now had peace in the midst of the storm." ~ Dale Galloway
     "Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness! You have relieved me in my distress; have mercy on me, and hear my prayer." ~ Psalm 4:1~
     "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus." ~ Philippians 4:6-7~
     "Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving." ~ Colossians 4:2~

Monday, December 1, 2014

The Grand Design(er)

     There's a designer to everything. Someone who creates something from nothing. Someone who takes the time and energy to create every detail. Creating something isn't always easy. I often look at things that my little brother or sister created, and think, "Wow! I don't think I have the patience to do that!" We all have our special gifts and talents that God has given us, and God loves to watch us bloom into the person that He created and formed us to be.
     Have you ever seen inside a pocket watch? To see how each individual spring is placed, and how it's all put together, to tell us time. It's incredible!
     I've often wondered how people don't believe in God, our Creator. To think of how God design's each part of us. He molds us into His grand design. We're told in Psalm 139: 13:16, "For you formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother's womb. I will praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made... My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed..."
     In the Noah Webster's 1828 dictionary, the word "Design" is said to: Plan; to form an outline or representation of any thing. To purpose or intend; the general order of the whole; one who frames.
     When you have blueprints to create something, people come together to give their own idea's. They create something out of nothing; and therefore, create a Design.
     There's a designer to everything. However, God, is the ultimate Designer! God created each and every one of us! Our purpose in life, is to Glory God, and enjoy Him forever! As God molds us into who He wants us to be, He chisel's away, and creates a masterpiece. 
     "Indeed My hand has laid the foundation of the earth, and My right hand has stretched out the heavens; when I call to them, they stand up together." ~Isaiah 48:13