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Thursday, November 27, 2014

Carolyn McBreen Gibbs Blog: A Turkey Day Birth!

Carolyn McBreen Gibbs Blog: A Turkey Day Birth!: 71 years ago, on Thanksgiving Day, I was born. No doubt I disrupted Thanksgiving dinner, because I was born at 12:45 p.m. There were seven b...

A Turkey Day Birth!

71 years ago, on Thanksgiving Day, I was born. No doubt I disrupted Thanksgiving dinner, because I was born at 12:45 p.m. There were seven brothers and sisters, our Mom, and Grandma. Things were difficult during that war year of 1943. Raising seven children alone, and another on the way had to have been difficult. Immanuel Deaconess Organization was helping with food and clothes, Mom worked, but it was never enough.

The agencies that were helping stepped in and decided my mother did not need another mouth to feed. They urged adoption, she said no. They kept urging, she said no. Finally they said, " If you do not give her up, we will take the other children."  Devastated, no one to advise her, my Mom finally agreed. In those days, mother and baby were not seperated when adoption was the option. I was with her for 10 days, and she nursed me. She had already changed her mind. "We will keep her, and we will manage somehow,"she said. Grandma agreed, and said, "She is a little doll!"

When she told them she changed her mind, they said no, and reminded her of their threat. After 10 days, I was transferred to Immanuel Hospital, and from there sent to Immanuel Deaconess Children's Home in North Omaha. I would stay there only two blocks from my home, for a year, before being adopted. My mother went home empty arms, empty heart, and shut herself in her room for two weeks. My brothers and sisters were told I had died. Knowing now what I know, my Mom was not only sad, but felt so much quilt that she had somehow failed me. The little pink knit sweater and hat my sisters bought with their babysitting money was put away, and eventually was used on their dolls.

Fast forward to 2000. Armed with only a last name, I tried to search for my family. Lutheran Family Services had the records, but the cost of searching was too much. Two individual friends from John's (my husband) had met and married. We all reconnected at Church. God's plan! She  asked what information I had, and I told her I was baby eight, and the last name was McBreen. Her eyes opened wide, and Paula said, " My brother in California married a McBreen from Omaha. Her sister-in-law sort of remembered there had been another baby, and put us in touch with her oldest brother Bill. Over many family pictures, He said, " You look just like our mother." Armed with dates and names, Lutheran Family Services agreed to open the files, and confirm or deny. It was my family. They sent all the records, and all the conversations recorded, that I have shared in this text.

I went from a lonely, only child to one with brothers and sister, nieces and nephews! They have all embraced me, loved me, and accepted me as their own! God did this all! His plan, His execution, His timing! My mother was a believer, she is with Jesus, along with Grandma! At the end of her life, she asked one of my brothers, "Find her!" He had no idea where to start, but Jesus did, and He answered my Mom's prayer! Thanksgiving will always be special because that day in 1943 started my incredible journey. I am so Thankful to my Mom, for being who she was, and thankful that this "Turkey Birthday girl", will see her when our address in Heaven is the same! After seeing Jesus face to face, I want to walk into my Mom's arms, and greet her for the second time! Mom all your children are home!


Saturday, November 15, 2014

I Wonder!

Sometimes my brain goes weird places. Do you often wonder about things? I sometimes think I am the only one who's thoughts take me to wonder about things. At times I not only wonder, I also try to imagine "what if."  I'm watching it snow at the moment. As I look at the gray sky with small, lazy flakes drifting down, I wonder what it's like way above the clouds. Not just the altitude where planes fly, but way up beyond. 

This time of year with Christmas trees for sale, I always feel sorry for the trees. Do trees have feelings? That's probably silly, but I told you my mind was weird! They are a living thing, until they are cut down. That is the end of their life. I guess in my mind I could see them as happy as they grow bigger, and then it ends so abruptly.

I wonder too about birds and squirrels. They have feathers and fur for insulation, but I can't imagine what it is like to be out in the cold and snow of Nebraska, with no leaves to cover the nests. I know God made them with natural protection if they are going to go through cold and snow, but I try to imagine how they must feel.

I wonder what our dog really thinks when we go out the door, leaving her all alone. Does she worry that we are never coming back? Is she heartbroken, afraid?  What goes through her mind when she knows she did wrong? All we have to do is raise one finger, and say," Molly, What did you do?" She hangs her head, and looks really sad. She has a very expressive face, but I really wonder what she is thinking.

Most of all, I think about God working in so many people's lives, and I wonder.....how does He do that? Thinking about how mighty, how wonderful, how omnipresent He is really blows my mind!  He knows every name, He knows every thought, and He has a plan for each of us. When you put our feeble little minds on that, it is of course impossible to fathom!

Sometimes in a group of people, in Church, or at a restaurant, or store, I watch people. God gave me a reliable inner sense about people. He also gave me sympathy, compassion, and empathy. I look at their faces, and see pain, worry, and concerns. Some look so sad, it hurts my heart. I wonder what they are dealing with. Then there are those that are just unhappy. I wonder why, and just want to help.

I wonder about people who have no family, no home, and no hope. What thoughts do they have? How did they get to that place in their lives?  The absolute biggest thing I wonder is, if someone asked
me to deny Jesus Christ, or die.....am I brave? In the world we live in, I wonder that more and more. I wonder how well I would hold up, tortured for my beliefs, or if one of my loved ones was threatened. I wonder if I would be brave and courageous? Much as I love my family, I would choose Jesus! I wonder....am I that strong, that brave?  I Wonder!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Carolyn McBreen Gibbs Blog: Letting Go!

Carolyn McBreen Gibbs Blog: Letting Go!: Hands off! Let it go! Do we really understand what that means, and why is it easier to say than to do? For those of us who have a personal r...

Letting Go!

Hands off! Let it go! Do we really understand what that means, and why is it easier to say than to do? For those of us who have a personal relationship with Jesus, have learned in our walk with Him, to pray for what we need, and then release it to Him. So hard for humans!

We pray, we know God hears, we have learned He can do all things, yet, we give problems and concerns to Him only to snatch them back again. Then we pray some more, give it back to Him, only to take it back again. And so it goes!

As I walk longer with Jesus, as I get to know Him and His word more, the easier it gets to let go. Am I there totally, of course not! I still have skin on, and that makes me imperfect on my own. God has shown me over and over that He can do the impossible, and He alone knows the plans He has for me! I know that on one level, yet get in a hurry, and want to fix it myself!

When I do that, I have taken it out of His hands, and tried human ways to fix the problem. It never really works well. On the other hand, when I do release the problem to God, and let it go, He not only answers, but another piece of my life's puzzle falls into place! He has proven His plans are far above mine, and they are perfect for me, and my situation.

I have also learned, that even when I try to help God, no doubt, He smiles, as a loving Father would, and reroutes me to the right path, so in the end, His plan is once again in place. Each time, He patiently, teaches me lessons I need to learn. The answers and the lessons are nothing I deserve. His Grace, and Mercy are over and above what I merit as a sinner.

Walking with Jesus is the greatest adventure and journey I have ever experienced. Along the path, I go off on "Bunny Trails" and I sin, and fall short of the goal, but He is merciful and just, and brings me back to the trail. Why would He invest a lifetime, and eternity time on me? Because He loves me! Since I asked Him into my heart, and gave my life to Him, He forgives me. He loved me so much, He died for me...Me! If I had been the only human on earth, He still would have died on a cross, and risen from the grave, just for me. That my friends is huge! 

Now, if I remember that, stay in His word, and talk to Him in prayer, I should be able to let go.Even when I don't, I am assured that He continues to love me, and He will always answer when I go to Him. It may be yes, right away, which is awesome, it may be no, because He has a better plan, or it may be wait. That of course is the hard one, at which point, we want to take it back to hurry up the outcome. He asks us to wAit,
because the timing is not right for us or the situation. Take heart, dear one....God is listening! Take hope....and Let Go!