January 5, 2010


Well, I've attempted to write a post three times and deleted each one!
I am faithfully inconsistent...that's the great thing about blogs-I am free to write or not write.
When I sat down to post 2009 in pictures, I was overwhelmed by the amount of pix to choose from and the events of the past year.
A Quick remembrance brings me to my knees in gratitude for His faithfulness and power and for His work to heal my heart.
If I were to choose just one facet of my life Jesus has been working in me, it would have to be establishing me in His unconditional love-experiencing Grace and my understanding of that Grace.
But since I cannot possibly stop at just one, indulge me as I record the many events that made last year one that I won't quickly forget.

We began this past year leading a series at our church called, Immersion. We listened daily to the New Testament, met with only one woman for several weeks before we had to stop due to circumstances, but the effects of listening to the Word daily were demonstrated in His strength flowing through me in the situations I found myself in all year long. It was the beginning of a healing I so needed.

Our dear, dear friend, Donnie Gavin, passed away in January, pushing ahead our vacation to Buffalo to see our newest granddaughter, Trinity Faith Ritenburg-born on December the First, the previous month. That trip was bittersweet. An etched memory of grief, coupled with joy.

We were blessed with our new car-to us-from my brother-in-law and sister just as the one we had gave up the ghost. Timing was amazing. And watching the 'Pick -N-Pull' tow it away as well as give us $300 for it was equally amazing. That came literally on the eve of our trip to Florida to pick up our car and visit with the Walker's for ten days.
While in Florida, we awaited the decision about my brother in law getting a position here in SA...that came after we left and it fell through. Needless to say, we were all bummed.

At the end of April, my friend, Diane, paid for three tickets for the boys and me to head back up to Buffalo to stay with her for her birthday and be together again after the death of her husband. I was so excited to come back and visit family again, get up to the Allegheny mountains and see how Triny had grown. What a great visit that was. I hated to leave them all, but missed my love terribly.

Three trips in five months was a lot. It was time to settle down and get to work with my business, Designs By D.A.U.N.E. That began a wonderful journey of collecting fabric, supplies, and painting the 'shoppe'...I think I enjoyed the time I spent in my search for those things as much as I did in actually creating aprons and then designing my two websites, Designs by Daune-one a blog and the other an actual site that you can buy from. Late hours spent on that and I haven't actually been able to get to those sites lately...

I was stretched by performing at our church and, once again, it was an uncomfortable stretch. I prefer to be in the background, not before a thousand people; but I will say that if my acting before men furthers His kingdom, then stretch I will. We performed two different times together and then in the fall I recited Ephesians 4:1-10 all by myself...and oh, I officially became a member of Grace Point Church this past summer. Being in community has been a hunger I've had for over a year and yet I recognize that it's more than joining a church; it's making connections and working in unity toward a common purpose-establishing His kingdom on the earth...

Then the news came...my sister and her family were moving here...oh the anticipation of having her near me, beginning a business plan and then executing it together after all these years of talking about it...they'd be here in September..much to do with little time to spare.

But, oh, my parent's had been talking a lot about mom's health, her being in the hospital so many times in the last year and how she might not make another cold winter. We payed, encouraged them to come and they finally decided to take the plunge...flying here for dad was nothing short of a miracle since he hadn't been on a plane since the 50's and vowed to never fly again!

So, three weeks after Karyn got here, we welcomed my folks and things changed again. The dreams of having a business had to take a back seat to this wonderful opportunity of caring for my aging folks.

But our house was way too small and not warm enough for them! That meant another move...we've already moved five times in almost four years and I'm beginning to feel like a vagabond! But God knows what's best for every one of us and had already prepared a beautiful home just for us. So, the Saturday after Thanksgiving, we moved again. This time around, I learned about patience and His timing. More growth.

Christmas was spent celebrating with family that haven't been together in years. I don't believe the Walker children have ever spent it with extended family, so that made our time together even more special. There were so many presents and this year I was lavished on like never before. It was overwhelming.

We ended the year with a 70's disco ball party. It was a small gathering, but it was a lot of fun. Earlier on New Year's eve, Caleb commented on how he needed to use baking soda so his teeth would be white for the party! Is that not sooo cute?

'School' began in September with a plan, but as I look back, I see His plan was Life, learning to change, and make the main thing the main thing...knowing Him when the wind and waves were pounding against our house.

As a mother, I can only give my children what I have inside of me. Love and I took a class this summer called, Grace Based Parenting and although we didn't make every class due to work schedules, we gleaned some things that as they've been applied, there has been good fruit.

We also took a class to lead others in healing called, 'Whole Hearts'. The knowledge and experience gained from that class has reverberated in our own personal life and I believe was a gift from His hand at just the right moment.

Freedom comes at the cost of looking at truth-that can be uncomfortable.

But freedom is what Jesus died to give us.

I've made a couple of decisions/goals for this coming year. One is to lead at least two people into a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. To that end, I am praying for one particular girl.

Another goal is to see Designs by D.a.u.n.e. become a viable avenue to fulfill the first goal by giving me an open door to meet people and share His life with them. To that end I will plug away at the sewing machine, believe for creative ideas and then follow through.

Last year's two words that Jef and I had a revelation of were: Intentional and purposeful...I see these words being a capstone for our future. Do you have any words that propel you forward in this new Year?

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