About Me

South Africa
My husband, Brett and I live in beautiful South Africa and have been blessed with the most precious family. We have 2 very beautiful and brave daughters, Tianna and Angelee and a very precious little boy called Zac who touched our hearts forever in his 1 day here on earth. We never would have imagined that we would have to live this side of Heaven without our sweet boy who was born with half a heart, but every day Jesus carries us through and is teaching us more than ever how to live, laugh and love fully. A year and a half later, our faithful Great Restorer graciously blessed us once again with another son ... our beloved Gabriel ... a ray of sunshine in all our lives! This blog has been a place where I have been able to journal my journey through loss, hope and choosing to live a life rich in love.

Blog Archive

30 July 2011

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff

This year has been a year of learning how to "let go". If you are wired anything like me, this is not always easy. I'm one of those people who has a big heart and feels very deeply - sometimes too deeply. I looked back over my journals and discovered once again how long my very gracious Lord Jesus has been walking around this mountain with me ;0) It's a learning curve to create the habit of "letting go" before things mount up in your heart. Just this week my eldest looked me in the eye and used my very same words to her ... "Mommy. Don't sweat the small stuff." I was so proud of her for being able to recognize and remind me that her and I are learning the same principle together. There is nothing like observing something in another persons life to help you recognize that you still have work to do in your own life. This is a very wise principle that my sister Niqui has taught me over many heart felt conversations. Oh how grateful I am for her in my life! For so long I have been plugging away with my firstborn to help her learn how to let the small stuff go and not stress so easily, yet I have been walking around with the same ailment for so long. I thank God that He uses my precious children to mould, refine and teach me so many life giving lessons. 
As I worked through and processed what was stressing me out so much yesterday, I heard His encouraging whisper to look for the blessing in amongst the disappointment. We all have our faults, because we are all on a journey to wholeness and freedom. To become engaged in offense which most often comes through misunderstanding, robs us of the blessing that was ultimately intended. It always amazes me how hard that choice to "let go" is when you feel so justified in your interpretation of events. But I can truly say, no matter the level of hurt ... there is nothing sweeter than the freedom and liberty that blows upon your heart when you finally let go. Oh the lightness! 
So here's to a stress free weekend as I let go and trust God. He is after all capable of working all things out to His glory!
Love you all xxx

21 July 2011

The Beauty of a Gift Lavished in Love

Yesterday our "Power Hour" girls Bible Study group was talking around Philippians 4. There are so many amazing and encouraging promises in this little chapter for all of us to draw from. Promises about how to walk free of anxiety and in peace and contentment, no matter what we feel or whatever our circumstances might look like. Promises that teach us how to receive the gifts that God has stored up for us. There are so many uplifting promises. I encourage you to give it a read today. I was sharing with the girls around verse 19 which says "And my God will liberally supply (fill to the full) your every need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus." Doesn't it just blow you away when you read God's certainty. He says that He WILL (not might or maybe) not only supply ... but He will LIBERALLY supply (which means fill to the full) EVERY need that you have according to the riches found in Jesus Christ. My heart was so filled with courage and hope when I see the certainty of God's promises for all who will look to Him and call on Him believing. 
Then we started talking around what kind of needs Jesus is able to fulfill. This verse says EVERY need. That means not only our material needs, but our body, emotional, spiritual, intellectual, ... basically any need that we may encounter in our day. He is waiting for us to look to Him and His infinite resource of love to meet any need that we may have. 
As we were talking I realised that when God gives us a gift ... it is a good and perfect gift, not given to us at our own expense. No ... when God gives ... He gives to us that which will enrich us and it is given at His expense. We started sharing around the many gifts that God has given each of us over the years and I shared with the ladies how God has really blessed us through this pregnancy with little Zac. Over the last six and a half years I have given away all our baby equipment, clothes and things. We are totally starting over from scratch. I had my heart set on  finding a lovely compactum with baby bath inside. In the last 3 weeks I was contacted by a sweet friend who offered me her wooden compactum (with bath inside) and matching cot for R600! I was blown away! It is so beautiful (pictures to follow when the nursery is ready). Within days my very precious mommy darling whom I have been missing SO MUCH (she lives in the U.S.) heard about it and blessed us with the money to get it. This means so much to me because it is a constant reminder of her presence with us and Zac when we miss her as much as we do. 
Then earlier this week, we were blessed with a rocking chair, something that I never had with the girls but always desired. This chair is so special to me because it originally belonged to a very dear friend of mine who nursed all three of her children in it many years ago. She is a mother that I have always admired and looked up to in the way she has raised her 3 children. She too lives in the U.S. and I so miss her friendship - so this chair is such a sweet reminder of her being closer. We are going to have it recovered with the material draped over the chair to fit into our little room. Isn't it beautiful! 
As I shared these testimonies of God's amazing blessings with the girls I was so overwhelmed with God's love that not only has He given us the gift of Zac ... the son we have prayed for for nearly 2 years, but He is lavishing all the practical gifts we need to welcome him into our home. As if this has not been enough, later that morning a dear friend of mine came to me and gave me 8 packets full of little baby boy clothes from newborn to the age of one that my sweet little Godson has outgrown. I was simply blown away. Just take a look at these blessings ...

Today may you be reminded that Jesus has the means to supply any one of your needs. Maybe you need His wisdom or perspective in a matter. Ask Him. You will be amazed at the ways He will speak to you, whether through a friend or book. He wants to meet your need. Maybe you need an injection of strength and joy again. Right now as I sit here and type I have been given a wonderful afternoon off to rest while my children are being taken care of. This was one of my needs that God has met through a precious mother in grace. Ask God and then share with someone the amazing testimonies of how He has met your needs. 
All my love xxx

15 July 2011

The Adventures of my Little Bear

My precious firstborn had the best day yesterday. She has been waiting for 2 things over the last 2 weeks ... Firstly ... to chop all her hair off. I tried and tried to talk her out of it, but this little bear knows exactly what she has in mind so off to my lovely friend Sandra's salon we went and she had some pampering done. Just take a look at her sweet little face soaking up all the "big girl" treatment ...

 Just look at how beautiful my little girl looks! What a stunner!!!
What touched my heart most was that when she looked at herself in the mirror she was able to say with confidence "I am so beautiful". Yes my precious Tianna, you are absolutely beautiful! May you always know that and carry your confidence with such simple grace.
Now the second thing that she has been waiting for not-so-patiently is for her letter to arrive in the post from her Lala. As we got home she checked the post box and low and behold ... her letter arrived!!!! It was truly her day in every way! Just look at that tender little smile. 
Thank you precious Lala for making Tianna's day with your precious words of love. She has her card packed with all her treasures ... safely in her heart xxx
All my love,
Janine xxx 

08 July 2011

Happy Birthday to a Precious Mother-in-Grace

My very precious mom-in-law has never let me call her my in-law. She has me call her my "mother-in-grace". This post is dedicated to saying a very happy 60th birthday to this amazing lady who has taught me so much by the way she lives and loves. I realise how blessed I am to have 2 wonderful mother figures whom I love and respect dearly. 
Happy birthday to you mom. We love you so very much!!!
All my love xxx

06 July 2011

A Letter in the Post

There is nothing more exciting that getting a special letter in the post. My precious Mommy Darling who lives so very far from us in the U.S. has started something special with all her grandchildren by posting them a card in the mail every now and then. Angelee finally got her turn. Her card arrived in the post this week. Just look at that smile!!!
Watching Angelee's joy showed me once again how easy it is to impact anothers life when we show love intentionally. Something as simple as a letter can shape memories that will last forever. Thank you my precious Mommy darling for making us all smile even from so very far away. We love and miss you. 
Love Always,
Janine xxx