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Sunday thoughts and an open letter

It always feels good to sleep in. For me, 6:30 is sleeping in. So when I woke up at 7:15 this morning I felt like I'd slept my life away!  But boy did it feel good.  

The girls were ready for me when I got out to the milking area this morning.  All their calls said, "Where have you been?!"

I love the quiet mornings filling feeders, collecting eggs, and the tinny sound of hot, fresh milk hitting the empty stainless steel bucket.  And now that it's cold outside in the morning it's just so refreshing and quiet and peaceful.

I haven't been able to be at church for several weeks now.  Between having to work on Sundays (more than I'd like) and Connor's baseball tournament schedule I haven't been able to make it.  But in the hit and miss months I think we've settled on a church family.  The Refuge meets at a community center near 107th avenue and Camelback.  Good friends of ours recently started meeting there and invited us.  There is no perfect church.  The requirements are there.  The abundance of fluff, smoke and mirrors is not.  That's about as close to perfect as it gets for me.  We've been at a few great churches in the weeks I've been looking.  There are some great Bible teaching, gospel preaching, Christ-centered, worshipful churches out there.  Some of them I'd actually prefer to settle down at, but they're far away and my kids haven't made a connection with anyone.  At the Refuge my middle school boys know a fellow middle school aged boy already and the youth group meets on a Wednesday night which allows for the boys to still get together with their peers and learn about God together.  I like that.  I want that for them.

I took the boys to the Arizona Science Center after church.  We've been before but it seemed to be more of hit this year than when we went last.  Ryland was enamored with the 3D printer.  Connor was fascinated with the water works and gears.  Tells me something about them.

This morning I read a post on Facebook that shook me.  The person posted their feelings about the latest shooting in Colorado at a Planned Parenthood.  She aligned the man who did the shooting with right-winged conservative Christians and seemed to think this deranged man who killed three people was a representative of a Christian who is anti-abortion.

My mind went into high gear.  In my head I wrote her a whole letter.  I didn't post it.  I don't know if I should have or not.  I don't want to come across as a knee-jerk reaction Christian who rants about all the things they're "against".  I want my life to this woman to say:  She's a Christian.  And I know because of the way she treats people.

She may never read this, and maybe, if God gives me the grace and the courage and if it's even necessary, maybe she and I could talk about it.  But just to get it off my chest here's an open letter to the Facebook world:

Dear Facebook friend, 
I read your post and had a flood of thoughts.   
I wanted you to know that this man in Colorado Springs is not representative of a true Christian.   
I'm a Christian woman who opposes abortion and knows nothing about the hashtag #alllivesmatter.  But I do believe all lives matter.  And I know this man was not a Christian no matter what he said.  Nor was he for life, no matter what he said.  A true Christian lays down their life for others.  They don't take others lives to achieve some kind of moral state they think there should be.   
To me, both this man and the men and women who perform abortions, commit appalling acts of horror because they take life from a person according to their own judgements of what is right and wrong.   
What is right and wrong?  Who gets to decide?  The man with the gun on a snowy morning at a Colorado Planned Parenthood?  Or the practitioner in an exam room with a young woman on the table and the lethal saline about to be injected into her womb to stop the beating heart of her unborn human baby?   
I wonder what the logic is behind defending either one of those people's actions?   
I guess it comes down to what you believe.   
If you believe we're all highly evolving species of living matter randomly generated by time and chance, then why is it wrong for any Homo Sapien to take the life of another Homo Sapien?   
No one writes CNN headline stories and is grieved or appalled, demanding justice in the pride of lions when one lion kills another.  And it's not just because we're more highly evolved than the lion.  We demand justice and are grieved when people are murdered because we know right from wrong.  We know there is such a thing as evil.  And the only reason why we should know such a thing is if some kind of law higher than our own opinions governs the human race.   
I believe those precious lives taken by that man in Colorado are precious because they bear the image of God. They know right from wrong and were made to represent in their nature the wonders of the Creator who made them.  
What happened at that Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood the other day is evil.  And I grieve.    
I think one day we'll look back at the horrors of abortion in the United States like we look back at the horrors of the genocide in Auschwitz in WWII.  Because we know right from wrong.  We know evil from good.   
I believe the world will get to see what real Christians are like more and more as these days of terror, and evil and violence progress.   They aren't out to kill those who do what they don't agree with.  They are out to lay down their lives for those they don't agree with.  

With love and a heavy heart,



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Wedding Day- Sept.4, 1993
Connor's birthday- April 1, 2003
During our first separation and pregnancy with Ryland- November 2004
Seeking a new start in Arizona all together- October 2005
 Second separation March 2010
Still together on a desert trail- Spring 2015
Today has been a tough day, emotionally.

Twenty three years ago today I made a vow before God and about 100 family and friends to take James as my husband, to have and to hold from that day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and health, till death do us part.

Those are some serious promises.  Better, worse, richer and poorer, sickness and health have all been part of these 23 years.  Honestly, most of it has been hard.  We weren't a very likely match at 19 and 21.  He from the big city, me from a small town.  His dad a pharmacist, mine a log truck driver.  We met in a child development class, taking pre-reqs for nursing.  He hated it.  I loved it.  He had long hair and torn jeans and l…