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the story of the trees–part 1

I have been asked so many times now about how my husband, Chuck and I met and decided to marry.  it is a wonderful story and i love telling it and i truly want my children to have it and know it so they see the hand of God in our lives through it all.  Once Chuck and I began talking, we noticed things that only God could have done……he began calling those ‘the trees’….we each have a different picture of what that looks like.  but the idea is the same….the trees line up and lead down the path….together….his vision of trees is the above picture….

….{my} idea of trees lining up…..not the leaning part but the lined up part 😉

i had just come from a very tumultuous marriage situation.  i had been married for 20 years and had 9 children–8 of which came from this marriage.  i had home schooled them all up to this point.  when it became painfully obvious that this marriage was not going to work (i can expound on that another time, but since this is mine and chuck’s story, i will try to keep with that :)), i put the kids in school.  to see the hand of god in even moving us to this place 3 years earlier, i just stand in awe.  there was never even a THOUGHT of us putting the kids in school–ever according to my {ex} husband. And the provision of schools in and of itself is a miracle!

i had been a broken woman….a very broken woman.  and i was in counseling.  i had been for 2 years by the time i met chuck.  god had done some miraculous things in me through this counselor. i even began working for/with him in the counseling room–gleaning as much as i could….this concept of living from my heart and learning to see through the eyes of my heart was a life changer for me.  to say the least.

one day, i had been crying out to God to save my marriage (we had been separated 6 months at this time) and asking God why he wasn’t changing my husband’s heart.  my counselor asked me how long was God asking me to wait for him…..in my heart, i heard 6 months, but i was afraid to say that, since it had already been that long 😐  .   I said a year….and I felt God smile on that…that I was willing to wait longer….not sure what i was waiting for, but god knew.  i just wanted to stay married and have a good marriage and a testimony of how god had miraculously saved it.  i didn’t want my children to go through the life i did…..ok…so much more here is coming up about the marriage part….i will need to get that out…another time…..

one day i was driving down the highway.  i passed the mall and a heavenly smell passed through the car.  i glanced over and saw an Outback Steakhouse.  What I heard in my heart was, ‘you will know i am working the next time you eat there’.  o.kay…….not sure of that, so i let it go real quick.  but there does need to be some explanation of it.  i had eaten there once–my mom took me there for my birthday years ago and I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED it.  My husband didn’t care for it, so never ate there again.  Didn’t even think about it.  until that day.  and even then it was fleeting.

I was attending Celebrate Recovery–for some major codependent issues that had come up through my counseling times.  There was this man who was always greeting those coming in.  I would not look him (or any other man) in the eyes, because although i was going as a single {mom}, i didn’t want to ‘look’ single.  it never occurred to me that walking in with SEVEN kids would take away ANY thought of that  :).

So this man….he was a greeter at CR and also one of the parking lot crew…actually he ran the parking lot crew.  One Sunday, our family had to leave early…for one reason or another–it was always happening.  this ‘crew’ member came out to our van as i was loading kids up and asked how many of those were mine….we actually did have some extras that day, so i told him which were mine and which weren’t.  he said…’well, how many kids do you have?’…..i answered 9.  i didn’t know this at the time, but my referenced name became Ginny9kids.

i always worked on fridays at the counselor’s office.  I had 5 part time jobs at the time, so that i could remain home with my preschoolers.  i worked outside on tuesdays and fridays.  friday nights were CR…..so I would go straight from work to CR.  on one particular friday, we had had some cancellations at the office, so i got a {by that time} rare counseling session.  i don’t remember exactly what was said, but my counselor (more like a dad to me at that time) said some things to me–i remember it being more of an admonishment/exhortation of where i was in my walk.

i get to CR and it is a different format that night.  it is a free testimony night, where people just stand up and casually share what God has been doing in their lives…not a long, drawn out deal….well, this guy gets up and starts talking….and out of his mouth come the EXACT words my counselor had just spoken to me just a few hours before…the EXACT words…scripture reference and all…..I kinda (not literally, but surely in my heart!!) plugged my ears and sang as loudly as i could so that i could not hear what God was saying…..because i knew he was speaking and I didn’t want to hear it.

From Chuck’s perspective, he said he didn’t want to share, but God told him to get up and what to say at that moment.  he says that the whole room was dark except one light that was over me….and i was nodding my head in agreement to what he was saying (ok…I don’t remember THAT part ;))….He said he remembers thinking that I was the only one in the WHOLE room who was getting what he was saying…..

more to come……….

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Wally Black - March 18, 2011 - 11:43 am

You have no idea how much I look forward to hearing this whole story. I have to admit, I remember a little of it from Chuck’s viewpoint!

Pastor Rod - March 18, 2011 - 4:02 pm

Wow, brought me to tears. Again, thank you, thank you, thank you for letting me be a part of the journey. Amazing. You are a great story teller and its true! God works miracles for the broken. The next baby is going to be a book!

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