+[an altar of sorts]+

When you walk out our glass backdoors, you are standing at a firepit surrounded by two one seater rocking deck chairs and two, two seater twins.  The deck is painted a color something like raw clay; I call it Indian Summer, though I have no idea its real name.  The backdrop for the firepit area is a wall of native boulders extending 5 ft from the ground, a lower tier of the yard.  Endless flagstone provides the footing surrounding this area and leads to a rock staircase of sorts which takes you to the upper tier of the yard.  There are more Ponderosa pines and Aspen than I can count growing upon this land, and more flowers than any landscape center in the area.  A water feature area (rock waterfall and pond) bring complimentary sounds to the whispering pines.   There are benches scattered amongst the trees beckoning for one to sit awhile and take in the beauty.    I created none of it.  None.  It was all here when I came.

If you step beyond the firepit, and the waterfall and pond, and walk another hundred steps or so you come to the boundary of our yard and the beginning of a 500 acre park.  Full of lakes, hilly trails, breathtaking views and a forest of excitement, we do everything from hike, to sled, to picnic, to listen to outdoor concerts back there.  Its our backyard!  Sometimes that still takes me by surprise.  We so did not plan for this.  Remember, we came here with no job, no savings, no idea of what it would look like.  This is all Provision...we just showed up.  Doug followed the leading of 2 years of prayers and I answered an ad to cook for a widower upon arrival.  We ended up living in the 2 bedroom basement apartment here in the widowers home for 6 weeks, then he moved to TX leaving the entire home to us.    It was not a journey without bumps and bruises, but it was, and is, Provision.

Im not sure that Ive ever shared what our surroundings look like here before, other than a couple of pics from our master bedroom windows.  So I thought I would today. 

Wednesday is the one year anniversary from the day we stepped foot off the plane from MN, as a family,  to move here.  No furniture, no housing, no job, no savings, nothing.  The Lord was leading Doug and that was all we had.  And that was enough.  Things stayed that way, only 1 suitcase each and layers of uncertainty for 13 weeks.  Christmas held no gifts, no tree, no decorations - just a few candles in the windows.  I realized at that time that singing "Youre all I want" was a lie.  I wanted much, much more.  Still, He was faithful and in January Provided for ALL of our belongings to be moved here, something we had no money to make happen.  I still remember when I got the email telling me that another family had footed the bill to move our belongings here.   Amazing. 

The Lord had a Plan and a home ready for us the day we got here, and long before.   The Lord wanted to be the only Source to point back to in the roots of our establishment here, and He is.    He built this life for us in this season, we did not. 

I guess this is my online building of an altar.  Noah built one when he walked on dry land following the flood, Abraham built one when he arrived in the land God had sent him to, Moses raised an altar and called it The Lord is Our Banner to celebrate victory... and I am to.  

I never want to forget this journey which brought us to where we are now.  I also never want to live only amongst that past journey.  I do want to, however, continue to testify of the faithfulness I have seen in my God. 

This morning I prayed with the girls that we would not be lulled to sleep by these blessings, but that we would stay awake for whatever is ahead.    None the less, here is my online altar, my remembrance of what transpired a year ago this week, and my pausing to reflect upon all that is Good in our lives, even more so the Source from which all Goodness flows.  It was a long, hard journey.  Much had to die, much had to be born.  The Best is still to come.

Today I give thanks and remember.

all pics via Regional Park