Thursday, August 19, 2004

Rebecca's Journey - 50

Greetings Friends!

We trust that you all will have had some rest and enjoyment this summer.

There are a number of changes taking place here. I'll put the details below for those of you who'd like to read about them. But first, from Rebecca:

"Last week I was doing a particularly painful and difficult exercise in my physical therapy. Without even realizing it, I cried out: 'Thank you, Lord Jesus, thank you!' Donatienne (my physical therapist) said: 'Now, I don't understand that. Why do you thank the Lord when something is difficult and painful?' I explained to her that by thanking the Lord, I'm reminding myself that because my life is given to Him, He is in control, and He is working everything into His pattern for good for me. (Romans 8:28, Phillip's NT: 'Moreover we know that to those who love God, who are called
according to His plan, everything that happens fits into a pattern for good.') By thanking Him, I remind myself of that, and I remember to give the situation to Him and draw upon His help and strength. 'O,' she said, 'Now I understand.'

"I remember a time many years ago when Paul and I were driving in Northern NY with a car load of friends. We'd been complaining and grumbling about something. Through the conversation the Lord began to speak to us, and challenged us to stop complaining, but to instead give thanks. (I Thessalonians 5: 18: 'Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.') It was a turning point in my life.

"In the second book of CS Lewis' Space Trilogy, Ransom, the main character, is speaking to the Eve figure on a new planet, Perilandra. He's referring negatively to something that had just happened. Her response was something like this (I'm not quoting exactly): 'How can anything that comes from Father's hand not be good. It is just a different kind of good.' When I read that it was confirmation and clarification. I prayed, 'Lord help me to see, from your vantage point, what You send and allow, and give me a thankful heart.' I believe that one of the things God values most is a grateful heart."

Changes at the Petrie household:

~Annie has been here for the month of August, and returns to France on the 29th.

~Stephen has extended his time at home until the end of September to be a help - which he always is. He'll take a gap year before starting university and will be living with Susannah and Phillip in Cleveland.

~Margaret and Andrew Howell, friends from Paris, will be here to help us for the 1st 10 days of September.

~Judy will arrive on 2 September and will be here for 3 ½ weeks, after which she returns to the US in preparation for her son's wedding in November.

~My cousin, Diane, arrives from Toronto on 28 Sept. for 2 ½ weeks.

~Then Rebecca Joosten from Mobile comes on 19 October for nearly 3 weeks while I'm in North America. Annie will be back here to help during that time.

~Robert and Tracey Vaughan will be moving back to the US mid-Sept. We'll miss them.

~Wade and Karen Channell, and their girls, have arrived, and will take over the Vaughan's home. Wade is an attorney who has worked internationally for several years, living in Burkina Faso and in Croatia. We've know Wade since he was a child. His parents have been very close friends for many years.

So we have some residential help with the care of Rebecca through early November. Please be praying with us for the Lord's provision in this. There are some possibilities about which we're praying. I have a fairly full autumn, but that is all contingent on adequate care for Rebecca.

Well, that's sufficient for now. Many, many thanks for your prayers.

With love from us both,

Paul & Rebecca