Bloggy Gratefulness

Warning: Sappiness Ahead


The first time I went to an autism support group meeting, I remember being intrigued by the other women there. They were beautiful, smart, funny, “normal.” Some had children with Asperger’s. Others with classic autism. Others with multiple children spanning the spectrum. Suddenly I was not alone.

I was surprised. I did not know that this happened to ordinary people… even extraordinary people. For the first time I finally realized that it wasn’t my fault, that I had not done something wrong. In an instant, these mothers took me under their wings, pulled out their day planners and rattled off phone numbers for different doctors to call, places to go, things to do. They tossed me a lifeline of hope.

Today I have been unspeakably blessed with a precious community of friends. We share a bond that cannot be severed. Our community is a reflection of God’s ideal for relationship: That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another. And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it. 1 Cor 12:25-26

I’m grateful for all my bloggy mama friends who get me, get this. There are days when everything is hard. Every. Single. Thing. But I can literally sense you around me cheering me on, commiserating with me, or offering some ingenious solution. I know I can spill it all on a web page and find you all there. “A good friend is cheaper than therapy,” as they say. You make the highs higher and the lows not so low.
And get this. Carrie, Jess, Tahni, Maddy, JoyMama, Laura, Mama Mara, Pixie, Andrea, Jenn, Michelle, Dannette, TiredMama, Lisa, GoodFountain, Ecki, Navywife, Judith, and so many more… Each one of you have helped me love and treasure my little girls better.

Thank you.

I’m grateful for the wonderful Godly examples of Kathryn, Shanda, Beth and other real-world friends who are faithful to walk alongside and encourage me with Truth.

I’m grateful to my Bible study sisters who bring new meaning to the phrase, “I Got Your Back.” From bringing meals when the kids are sick to taking notes for me for my next school meeting, they love in action. We laugh together, we seek God together, we pray for our husbands and children together.

Tahni sent me a notecard wheel to keep a record of verses and thoughts as they apply to Rhema and our family. I felt led to use the notecard wheel as a prayer journal. I spend a day praying for each individual child (I cycle through the list – Day 1 is Josiah, Day 2 is Grayson, etc.)

Simply put, your children have touched my life (through you). And it is my joy and honor to pray for each one.  (I love that my prayer list is growing.)

prayer_list

(I struggled with posting this picture of my prayer list because there’s a Bible verse about praying in private (Matt.6:5-6). I do not do this for show. ) Pardon the mush, but I wanted you to know what you mean to me, what your families mean to me. It may not seem like much, but the most powerful gift I know to give is to pray.

So excited to meet some of you in person this weekend!

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25 thoughts on “Bloggy Gratefulness

  1. seeing kendall’s name on that card just took my breath away.

    there is no more precious gift.

    there is no larger sense of hope.

    there is no more meaningful friendship.

    there is no greater comfort.

    there is no better reminder of God’s presence and encompassing love.

    i cherish you, my dear friend.

  2. You make me smile. I turned off my tv to read your blog in silence so I could soak it in more. I saw “Daniel” on your list. You are an incredible woman. I see where you come from on my blog feed and are in Mass. I have TONS of family in Mass and my mother was born there. In my heart it is my second home. 🙂

  3. This brought a tear to my eye to read that you are praying for my little Chee.

    Your words, your blog, has touched me in so many ways. I think about your faith, your very genuine relationship with God (that is not at all flashy or showy) and it convicts me (in a good way, the right way, the way conviction is meant to work).

    You are working on me in ways that you probably don’t even realize. I guess I should say, God is working on me through you. I thank you for letting Him do that.

  4. Thank you.

    I too am incredibly touched to see my punkin’s name on your prayer list.

    Community is a powerful blessing.

    You need to give Mama Mara an extra hug, OK? so she can bring it back to the midwest for me!

  5. You truly make “community” easy Jeneil! You are real, open, warm, loving, compassionate…you do all the same things you mentioned that others do for you. So, thank YOU!!

    Have a blast at your get together!

  6. Wah! I wish I was meeting you this weekend!! 😦

    Jeneil, what a blessing you are! You wrote, “It may not seem like much, but the most powerful gift I know to give is to pray.” Amen, my cyber-sister! Your prayers are a precious and fragrant offering before the Lord. “… they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.” (Revelation 5:8)

    By the way, Shanda and I met for breakfast this morning, and you and your fabulousity were included in our conversation. 🙂

  7. Your words are a such a blessing to me.

    Every post is brilliantly written. I love the way you mingle God’s Word with stories from your life. You have a gift.

    I think that you should write a book. It would be wonderful!

  8. That’s what it’s all about, helping support each other. I’m so glad to hear that you are actually going to meet some in person, in the flesh! Hope we’ll see some photos in due course?
    Cheers

  9. How fun that you are all getting together! I can only imagine the stories that will spin out of that gathering.

    I appreciate your prayers for my Christian. Thank you doesn’t seem like enough, but I thank you with a heart full of gratitude.

    I want to also thank you for your blog. You are inspiring to me. I admire your faith in God and in His guidance in your life. You definitely have a gift. I praise God for you!

  10. You too have touched my life more than you will know! Your blog is one of those lifelines I always look forward to. I can’t imagine what I would have done in those early days especially if I wouldn’t have had blogs to look to. There were people out there who understood! I can’t believe how people can feel so connected though never having met in person. “There is no distance in the Spirit,” and to know that you are praying for my Josiah is so humbling, and you know your Rhema and Hope and your whole family are always on my prayer list too.

    You mean so much to all of us too!

  11. Backatcha: *warning sap ahead* Janeil, you’ve touched my life in ways I find hard to express. My life, my day to day existence is mired in the material. You bring me back to spirituality, ideas, emotion and sentiment. You inspire me to want to be a better person. Thank YOU.

  12. Didn’t we have fun? And I notice you also have a snazzy black minivan? I loved how you checked for the magnet on the back to make sure it was yours. Our has two TACA magnets and an NAA. My Mia had seizures for four agonizing years. And now they are gone. I hope the same for your beautiful daughter.

    Kim

  13. Jeneil, I only came across your blog a short time ago, yet I find myself thinking about Rhema so often, as well as so many other children and their families I’ve come to “know” recently. We’re all in this together, celebrating our children’s successes and encouraging each other when things aren’t going so well. I used to feel so alone; autism is so very isolating. You are a real blessing to me, and I am so thankful to you for sharing what God is teaching you, and extremely grateful to you for praying for Becca.

  14. Now that is some good company to keep–being among those names on your prayer list. You are outstanding Jeneil. Thank you for lifting up our kids right alongside your own. On that same note, I’ve been busy (in a good way) organizing a Concert of Prayer for Special Needs in San Diego (www.concertofprayersd.org). It’s distracting me a bit from the blogging I must say. But there is no comfort like praying with other moms! You are a radiant witness.

  15. Wow. I have tears, cheers and chills. Thank you for displaying the names – now we can all pray for each other by name. Each of you, every one, is amazing. Thank you, love you Neally Moo.

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