Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Half Moon Bay

Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles. (Is 40:31)

The Grover family
Parker, Adi, Lexi-Rae

Bike Rides with my hubby

Sweet Faces

What a wonderful family getaway!!!
Luke, Adi and I spent a couple of days tent camping with the family in Half Moon Bay. It was pretty chilly, but fresh and beautiful.
I would love to say that we came back completely relaxed, but with three little ones under 21 months, an 8 and a 10 year old, and lots of water, sand and dirt....we had our work cut out for us!

Praise to Jesus for grandparents and their desire to give us lots of breaks!!!

I truly felt joy while we were away. Luke and I went for a couple of long bike rides. We peddled for miles along the bluffs; smiling, laughing and falling completely in love all over again.

My strength was renewed. My hope for a brighter future remembered.

My relationships with my family strengthened, my heart happy.

Thank you Jesus!!!!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Called according to HIS purpose...

Who I am in Christ is the best part of me. It truly defines who I am. My identity is found in His truth and promises for my life. I am because of Him. I desire His will, whatever that might be, because I believe that "for those who love God, all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose." (Romans 8:28)

Over and over again this verse comes to my mind. I have read it in so many versions, studied it, clung to it. Nothing brings me more reassurance, more hope, more peace and more joy to know that because I love God, any trial, pain, suffering and hardship that I go through, will "all work together for good." I praise the Lord that His sovereignty works over both the good and bad in life.

Suffering has helped me to grow spiritually. It has helped me to be sensitive to the holy spirit's working in my life. It has made me prayerful. It has brought me to a place of dependence on God and a trust that I would not have otherwise. It brings me into a deeper intimacy with the One who suffered for me. I am learning to rejoice in my suffering. No matter what.

Last night after sewing group, I was talking to Luke about a friend who is going through a tough time. We prayed for her and her husband, and that the Lord would be Jehovah-rapha in their lives. I was pleading with God for this family. After we prayed, it dawned on me that we do not pray for Olivianna any more. We do not need to. We lift our requests up to God almighty, usually having to do with health, safety, peace, etc...and now we have no need to ask God for these things anymore in her life. He has answered our prayers.

We prayed for a miracle and she was given 11 minutes of life with barely any lungs.
We prayed for healing and we have the promise that she is whole and perfect in heaven.
We prayed that she would be beautiful and she was angelic.
We prayed that the Lord would use her life in many ways, and He gave us the opportunity to give her heart/heart valves to another little baby who needed them.
We prayed that He would sustain us, and HE does. Each minute, each hour, each day.
Praise Jesus that He works ALL things together for His good.

On another note, I did well this week with eating right and exercising. It was pretty difficult getting up at 6:30 in the morning to jog when I was soooooo tired. Nonetheless, because of Luke's wonderfully gentle pushes, I persevered!!! Thank you to all who have encouraged me.

This week starts a season of camping for the family. We have a couple of trips planned and I look forward to hanging out with family and spending time outside.

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The land of the beautiful

Our wonderful day trip to Yosemite....


Glacier Point

Life is a journey

Smiling for momma

Adi contemplating the size of half dome

We had a wonderful day today with Nanny and Pappa in Yosemite. I hadn't been here since Luke and my anniversary in November. I was 8 weeks pregnant with Olivianna and I was very sick. The doctors say that sometime around the 8th week is when the diaphragm is supposed to form. I always think about that when I think of Yosemite. My babies diaphragm was supposed to be forming, but God had other plans for her life. He created her a little bit different for His purpose.

Yosemite is a beautiful place to visit. The rocks are amazing. The sky so blue, the valley so deep.
We started our day in the valley. We had a picnic in the woods, played in the water at the beach and walked to the lower Yosemite falls. Although it was hot, there was a beautiful breeze that swept across the valley and refreshed us. The trees were green and the yellow flowers brilliant with color. We finished the day driving up to Glacier Point. The mountain top. A birds eye view of the valley. It was breathtaking. I had to keep a very close eye on Adalin...as you could imagine!!! After our hike back down we finished the day with a treat (of course I didn't get one because I don't want to have to "work" it off!!!) The results of a yummy ice cream cone

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Time to lose it...

My silly little girl. "Sticker time"

Dressing up in mommies shoes

Adi's new "big girl" bed

My beauty

Last night I got on the scale. YIKES!!! I have not lost any weight since I had Olivianna. I am 20 pounds more than I was when I got pregnant, and I would like it off! Luke and I leave for Hawaii in 5 weeks. Starting tomorrow, I will wake up at 6:30 and jog for 20 minutes before Luke goes to work. I used to enjoy jogging so much, but since I had Adi, I don't jog. I think it is because I do not like jogging with a jogging stroller. (I know this is somewhat of an excuse!!!) Anyway, my goal is to lose 15 pounds in the next 5 weeks. I believe I can do that. If I lose 3 pounds a week, I will reward myself the week before I go to Hawaii with $150 dollars to buy a couple new outfits.

On another note...Adi has been in her big girl bed now for 3 days. She has not gotten out of it once during the night OR at nap time. She amazes me. I am having so much fun with her. It seems as if in the last week or so she has grown up. I look at her and am just amazed by the creation that she is.

"The thing is to rely only on God. The time will come when you will regard all this misery as a small price to pay for having been brought to that dependence. Meanwhile, the trouble is that relying on God has to begin all over again every day as if nothing has yet been done."

I read this on someones blog today. It really hit home. I am finding how true it is that misery leads me to rely solely on Christ, being totally dependent on Him. But that each day I am given a new opportunity and command to rely on Him again. I so desire to believe that I can do nothing on my own, therefore always looking to Christ for everything. These last 4 months have brought me closer to that place.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Growing up so fast

Today I met with Lori-Cae, our nurse that helped deliver precious Olivianna Grace. What a God fearing, loving, radiant woman she is. Her eyes filled with tears as she looked at the pictures of Olivianna. Her life made an impact on so many. Lori-Cae and I talked for 3 hours; sharing stories, hugs and tears. We talked about Dr. Altman, and our desire for him to know Jesus. We talked about the way the Lord is using my life, my faithfulness to God almighty for His glory. Oh, how I pray that He will use this difficult situation to bring Him glory. I pray that it will not be waisted.

This afternoon I played with Adi in her tent. We read stories and sang songs. As I looked at her, all I could think of was how much she and Olivianna look alike. Thank you Jesus that when I look at Adi, I also see my other precious daughter. I wonder what she would have looked like if she were with me now. She would be 24 days old today. She has been worshipping the God almight for 24 days. "Better is one day in your courts than thousands else where."

Thank you Jesus.

Tonight Adi started to sleep in a big girl bed.

It made me emotional.
My baby girl is getting big. She is out of her crib. As we took apart her crib, I said to Luke "doesn't if feel like just yesterday that we were putting this up? Joyfully anticipating her birth?"

She is now 21 months. What a wonderful adventure it has been.

She did not get out of her big girl bed once tonight. We told her that big girls go straight to sleep, and she did! Obediant little one!!!!

I am off to bed. I praise the Lord for his provision in our lives.

Thank you Jesus!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

To give us life...

Wood Colony Cemetery

Today we visited Olivianna's plot. It has been two weeks since her funeral. My parents have been so sweet to bring fresh flowers to her grave. My dad even waters the tree next to where her body lays. (He jokes that the tree will be twice as big and shady as all the other trees that have recently been planted). I love him even more for this!!!

I do not have much to say about tonight, except that it was very difficult. Luke and I stood there, looking at a mound of dirt, and as the tears began to drip, we thanked the Lord that her soul is not 4 feet under. That she is in heaven, where there is only love, peace, joy, happiness and praise. We thanked the Lord for his salvation through Christ, a gift to all who receive it in faith. We thanked the Lord for our precious Adalin Rose. For our girls. For counting us faithful and making us more like Him.

I also could not help but think of how it must have felt to allow His own son to be beaten and hung on a cross. But He did this for us, so that our sin could be forgiven and so that we could have a relationship with Him. So that we would have assurance of heaven. Thank you Jesus for dying for a sinful people, to give US life.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is in work within us, to Him be the glory. Ephesians 3:20-21
Today I met with a couple of woman from the church who are starting a new ministry within the woman's minsitry branch at Big Valley. They called me yesterday and asked if I would be available to meet ASAP to bounce some ideas off of. They began the meeting talking about how the church has been praying about and desiring a new local outreach that woman can serve in and that women in the community can be served. They explained their idea of a "clothes closet" for moms to receive clothes and necessities for their children. Moms who are in need would have a short meeting to discuss their families needs, and then would recieve a bag full of gently used and new items to meet that need. The church would be meeting the physical need first, allowing for more ground to meet their spiritual need as well. They explained to me that this "idea" was going to the financial team and then to the elders within the next week or so, but that many things would need to be prayed over and figured out. I thought it was a great idea.
After they talked about the purpose of the ministry, they told me that the purpose they needed to meet with me ASAP was because they wanted to know if they could call the ministry "Olivianna's Closet." A ministry that will carry Olivianna's life on...a ministry that will meet the needs of other mothers. A ministry where relationships can be built and individuals can come to know the love of Christ and their need for a savior.
As you could imagine, I was in tears (as were the women)! All I could think of was..."LORD, USE HER LIFE FOR YOUR GLORY. COME AND MAKE IT BEAUTIFUL."
And I know He will!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Lessons from the Father

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. (Colossians 3:15)

He teaches me daily. He teaches me through His word, through His holy spirit, through His people. Tonight He taught me through a conversation.

A dear friend of mine named Kristyn brought a delicious meal over for dinner. She was going to drop it off around 6:00, but called Luke in a frantic saying that she was so sorry but it was going to have to be around 7:00. I was not home from Pinecrest yet, so it was no big deal. When she arrived, the house instantly smelled of wonderful stuffed peppers and homemade cookies. She began to tell us the story of why she was late. She started preparing the meal around 2:00....making the cookies and prepping the peppers. She had just finished telling her mother how she was so excited to be giving her best to both God and to our family. Serving wholeheartedly with a joyful spirit. At about 5:45 she began to load everything into the car to bring it over. As she was placing the peppers in, they fell out of her hands and splattered ALL over the car, wall and garage. She was standing in an "un-stuffed pepper" mess. Kristyn was very upset. She ran in the house crying and quickly made a second batch of peppers. As the peppers baked for 45 minutes, she had a little conversation with the Lord. She realized that she had just spoke the words about serving with joy and giving her best, and that the devil was trying everything in his power to take her eyes off of Jesus. She remembered the reason that she was baking this meal in the first place...to be a blessing to our family during this difficult mourning time of Olivianna Grace. She looked at her 1 year old daughter in the playpen, and realized that in that moment, she was given the opportunity to choose life. To choose peace. To choose joy.....self control....integrity. She had to make a choice, will God receive the glory, or will I let the devil receive it. At that moment, she called Luke and told him that she would be late. She continued to prepare the meal with the characteristics of Christ. It was amazing....(and it came with a great story).

The lesson I learned was this:
While Kristyn was standing in our kitchen explaining all of this, Adalin came in with Luke's glasses. The glasses that we just bought last year and that we have tryed so carefully to protect. I had just spoken to Kristyn about our desire to give Christ the glory in all situations, most particularly in Olivianna's life, death, and memory. When Kristyn left the house, Luke explained to me that Adi had somehow severely scratched both lenses and that they would need to be replaced. Instantly I became upset and frustrated at both Luke and Adi. I became rude and my attitude became ugly. I blamed him for leaving them too low. Blamed him for not watching Adi. Blamed him for the fact that now we would have to spend money to repair them.

In my ugliness, Luke came over to me and held me and started to pray. At that very instance, the holy spirit began to minister to my heart. I saw the hypocrisy of my lips, the person looking into the mirror that walks away and forgets what they look like. I saw sin. But more importantly, I saw Christ calling me to choose life. To choose joy...peace...patience...self control...integrity. I saw GRACE!

Thank you Jesus for teaching me to be more like you tonight. You work everything for the good.

You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you. (Isaiah 26:3)

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

He bottles up my tears....

I am sad tonight.
Hurting, upset and jealous.
It is late. I am awake. This sucks.
I miss Olivianna. I want her.

Today my two cousins picked Adi up to go play. They are both pregnant and have little ones. Then I went to lunch with a friend who is 5 months pregnant and we talked a lot about being pregnant. Tonight we went to Luke's cousins for dinner, they just had a little baby. His name is Cameron. (He is 8 weeks old). He is so adorable.

As I look back on my day...I feel like I had a smile on my face for everyone else....but inside I was just trying to stay above water. I was trying to pretend like it was all okay, like I am dealing well with not having Olivianna in my arms. Truth is...I am so weak. I crumble at night. I pray each day that the Lord will sustain me...get me through it. Make it to tomorrow.

I know the truth. He will carry me on wings like eagles. He will sustain me. He will uphold me with His righteous right hand. Sometimes my heart and mind just have a hard time agreeing. Especially when I am tired.
Jesus, I am not strong. I can not be strong. I need to limp. Help me to limp in a way that brings you glory and peace in my heart. I desire to draw closer to you as I don't understand why my baby girl is not in my arms, but yours. I KNOW that she is in a much better place. Please help me to have an eternal perspective while I mourn over her. Help me to look to you for hope of a brighter future. You promise that You will turn my mourning into dancing.
Thank you Jesus.

Today I dropped off a card for Dr. Altman at his office. I continue to pray for him. That he will not be able to get off his mind the peace and assurance Luke and I had that our baby girl was forever in heaven with Jesus. Lord, soften his heart and open his eyes to your unfailing love and his need for a savior.

Tomorrow I am leaving for Pinecrest with my family. We are going for 2 days...just to get away and relax. I am looking forward to being out in God's beautiful creation. FATHER, PLEASE SHOW ME GLIMPSES OF YOUR GLORY.

I love you Lord Jesus.

Friday, July 4, 2008


For you, brothers, were called to freedom. Only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity to gratify your flesh, but through love make it your habit to serve one another. Christian freedom is the freedom to serve one another in love (Galations 5:13).

There are two things about the meaning of love in this letter: first, love was expressed by Christ's giving of himself for us (2:20); second, love is the expression of true faith (5:6). Now we learn that love is expressed by serving one another. When the object of our faith is Christ, who loved us, we are motivated and empowered to express his kind of love to others.

Today I kept singing the song...The face of love...(by Sanctus Real)

The face of love
The face of love
You look more like love everyday
You are the face that changed the whole world
No one too lost for you love
No one too low for you to serve
So give us the grace to change the world
No one too lost for me to love
No one too low for me to serve
Let us see...
Let us be your face

I thank the Lord today for freedom to love others.

Freedom to serve others and freedom to lift up the name of the Lord.

I want my face to look more like Christ every day.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

A short and Sweet Poem....

Splashes of Joy

Adalin Rose and Olivianna Grace

how I love to kiss their face

two beautiful girls

created fearfully

brown eyes and curls

smiling cheerfully

One by my side

both in my heart

they bring me great joy

they have from the start

A little poem I thought of tonight while I sat at my keyboard thinking of what to write. Thank you Jesus.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

I have been meaning to add this into my blog as to not forget the specialness it holds for me. My mother in love wrote this to her friends the day that Olivianna was born. It was also read at the funeral by Rick Thompson.

hi friends,
I wanted to thank all of you for your friendship and especially your love and prayers andconcern as we came to this day. June 24, the day Olivianna Grace was born. It was anamazing day of experiencing the peace that passes understanding. We were together as a Grover/Moore family in a special room that was provided. The Lord arranged for the birthing center to be completely quiet, I personally never saw another mother or baby. The nursing staff was pretty much at the desk all day and we had the best of nurses, Lori Cay.
The day progressed very quietly and quickly and the time came when they said she would be born in a few minutes. We waited, 12 of us wanting the door to fling open and the shout of "She is fine" to come through the door. Instead, Christine, Amber's new friend who had a similar experience in December and was the photojournalist for the day, came through the door with tears and invited the grandmas to come. To walk in and see Luke just finishing bathing her..... We were told it was a very peaceful and quiet delivery, she was put in Amber's arms, she lived for eleven minutes and Amber talked her into Jesus' presence.
She is beautiful, perfect. Nothing about her looked abnormal.We all held her, kissed her, smelled her and talked to her. Memorized her.

We know there was a witness in many ways to many people of the transforming life of Jesus in the believer. The nurses we passed by all day were watching.One of them told me we were "an inspiration to them". As I thanked one when I left, she said they will not forget our family.

Please pray that what they saw in us (TRUTH) takes root, brings questions and fruit. Especially pray for Dr. Altman, a Jewish man who stood by as Amber talked to Olivianna about going to be with Jesus. What if someone told Olivianna some day that her 11 minute life brought them eternal life? It will be worth it all, when we see Jesus......old hymn that just hummed through my head.
The Rock is still Solid, love, Connie thank you!