And we quickly became a one car family...


I don't know how to break the ice with the blog, except to say that things are rough right now and they are amazing at the same time. My silence here has been that I have been busy, yes, but more than that I don't know how to put into words for the "public" what all is going on in our family.

Why is it that you always learn the most about God in the deepest of valleys?

Let's just say that the $1000 we just put into the blazer to get us hopefully through next summer, may have only taken us a couple months. And the transmission ($1800 to fix) is coming to and end. In fact, we now still owe $129.97 on a car that we can no longer drive. Not fun.

That's a huge loss for our family, and there's not much extra to work with outside of that.

However, God is so good to us, even though we can't always see it clearly.

We always have more than enough for the day, and I'm so thankful, even when others try to tell me that I don't have enough.

I have been so emotional the past few days dealing with my heart. Now more than ever, I have been in God's Word and had it not been for that, I know my attitude would be so terrible right now. 

Lately, I've heard the voice of the world so strong, and it's led me straight to Jesus and I'm so thankful, because sometimes it takes these moments to send you straight into his arms to cry and know you are being held and he won't ever let go.

I'm so tired of the world telling me that I have to have more. That what we do have isn't enough. That because we don't have the ability to really save money right now that we don't match up. That they are "worried" we won't make it.

Seriously, if all that fades away and the only thing we have is Jesus, then I have way more than anything anyone could ever ask for.

Last night, I got in bed and needed a book to read. I opened my side table and rummaged across whatever was in there and found Radical by David Platt. I started it once with some girls awhile back and never finished it. I opened it to page 1 and started reading it again.  I remember not really feeling very "radical" when I started it last time. This time would be different.

It could not be more perfect for where my heart is before the Lord right now. There are Christians halfway across the world crying and dying because they are taking the gospel forth, and I'm crying because of a broken car, because of an inconvenience to my comfort, because I don't have some pile of cash sitting doing nothing that Dave Ramsey tells me I should have right now.

I was reading Ann Voskamp's blog and I came across her photos of Haiti and her words saying that we should never be so far from the poor that we cannot identify with who they are, and for once I felt like the wall holding up my pride began to break.

"Part of the solution to poverty is doing whatever it takes to get your heart to stay with the poor."

Sometimes that means being poor yourself, even though I laugh at the sight of that word, because I am the farthest thing from poor. I have a ways to go before I am ever poor, and even then I will never ever be poor, because I have a King that rules my life.

This morning I drove to co-op. I accidentally missed my turn and came to a fast stop. I slid the car into reverse and felt the transmission slip. A calm washed over me as I tried to get my car out of the middle of the road. I called Hart and we did what our mechanic told us to do, but when that didn't work, we knew we'd have to have it toed.

I could do nothing more so I walked into a room where children were happily playing without a worry in the world that anything could ever be wrong with the world and I set my own happy, healthy child down.

And it was then, that I lost it. I just needed to cry. It didn't take long for the other co-op members to realize what was wrong and they told me to go take some time. I remember hugging one of them and saying the last free $1000 had gone to that car and there was only $500 left for emergencies. She hugged me and told me she knew. I knew she knew, because we had been praying for months for her husband to have consistent, steady work. A blessing our family has. 

Co-op came to and end and I didn't have time to complete my order,  because I was the only one able to watch the kids today. I just figured that I would have time to do it at drop-off, even though I don't love doing it at the person's home where I take the groceries, because it's usually a really disorganized, dirty and kind of smelly home. I have looked down on them almost every time I enter their home in this way bringing co-op vegetables. Their home is far less like mine and they don't seem to mind. However, I do. I usually can't wait to get out of their house, because it smells like animals and I always wonder how I could be leaving people's groceries there in that home on the floor. They are always SO kind to me. They take my son to see their chickens and dogs. They fill up my cup of water. Today, I was thankful they took Cai out to see their chickens. I sat down at their worn table and I opened the folder to get my order out.

It's been a tighter month and the co-op date was changed. I would have rather cancelled my order completely, but I didn't really have that option. Even though, I knew we would be way over our budget for the month now, I trusted God would provide, as he always does.

When I opened the folder, I saw a check clipped to the pocket. It said TRAYLOR ORDER and it was written for an amount of $54. Enough vegetables to last me more than half of next month.

I just bawled right there at the table.

I didn't deserve that grace and mercy from the Lord that I felt in that moment. God was so good to me. He cared for me. He knew that I needed that encouragement and provision. He took care of everything.

Not to mention the day before when I was trying to be careful with our grocery money at Aldi, some stranger must have heard me tell Micaiah we could not buy the bag of marsh mellows, because we could only buy what was necessary for the day. The bag of marsh mellows was sitting at the register waiting for him by the time I got up there, paid in full.

God is blessing us physically, even though others may not think it's enough. It is always enough.

I have never felt that we could never buy groceries. I have never had to go hungry because we didn't have enough. We have never missed a mortgage payment or been able to turn our lights on. Praise God for these things.

We are thankful that Hart works hard at good job. That he is happy in his job and we pray, yes, that God would bless The Mather Company even more, because he HAS been blessing that company and they are doing an amazing business here in Columbia! We are so thankful for the opportunities God keeps giving them to sell real estate and they are far from giving any of that up! Hart and Charlie have a vision for Columbia, SC and God is moving them in mighty ways for HIM! Hart and I joke that in 10 years it's going to be fun to look back and see how much God has done for both of our families!

We are praying about something more for me (outside of the dance studio), possibly. We are praying about the car situation, which in honesty, we can be a one car family for awhile. My mother in law has already offered me to use her car when I need it to grocery shop. We have an amazing body of Christ that is our support during this time, and we trust that God WILL provide.

And to be honest, we probably COULD save money and we COULD be better stewards of what God has given us. I think God has done this, so that we would become the stewards of our money that he has called us to be. I can do a better job meal planning, so we don't eat out. We can go without more, with joy, right now, so that we can save, and we can count our blessings, because we have millions of them everyday. 

I am praying that I will not be too prideful to accept what that means for us. That if I have to work part-time somewhere, that I will consider it joy.

More importantly I share this for you to be praying, too, and that you will not by any means "worry" about us or "pity" us, but to think about what God has given you and how you can use it to truly reflect His calling in your life.

Love and prayers,

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