Harder Family

Harder Family

Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Update 6/18/24: Trust in Action

Psalm 56:3 "When I am afraid, I put my trust in You."
Psalm 31:14 "But I trust in You, Lord; I say, 'You are my God.'"

The definition of trust is a firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone of something. I believe that faith in God is trust in action. I'm not sure how else David in the Psalms above could express such trust and faith in God, despite what he was facing. 

Life has been speeding along and at times, I feel like the train is out of control. I am sure I have mentioned before, but I like to feel like I can control things or at least come up with a great plan for life. It is quite hilarious that I even think for a moment that I can control or plan anything, and yet I try. I don't know about you, but I am a slow learner. God has been working on these areas of my life for nine years. I am a work in progress!

Although life has gotten somewhat back to a "normal" feel, things still aren't normal. I have a hard time accepting that some days. Shan and I are making loose plans to try to visit China next spring. It is hard to plan anything when we don't know what life will look like from one week to the next between Wayne's health and mine. I'd like to believe in complete healing, but I know that God doesn't always answer that way. I do firmly believe, and it is evidenced in Wayne's life, that God controls the number of our days. But for someone like me who wants to come up with a plan, it is hard to sit back and wait! Can anyone relate or is it just me?

I had to go to our Airbnb today to clean it. On the way there, God spoke to my heart and encouraged me through songs. Two of my favorite from this last year came on: "Worthy of my Song" and "Even If". The lyrics spoke so deeply to me. As "Even If" says, I know that God has been faithful to me in the past and that I can trust Him to walk with me through any difficult journey, as evidenced the last 16 months of our lives. He can save me through the fire with His mighty hand, but even if He doesn't, my hope is in Him alone. That is trust in action...when we keep believing and keep trusting, even when it doesn't seem like God is answering our prayers. That is a hard place to be, but also a place of beauty. 

God used the song to remind me of what He has brought me through the past few months with my cancer diagnosis. I don't know the future, but I do know who holds my future and that is why when the next song, "Worthy of my Song," came on, I couldn't help but sing loudly in the car and worship Jesus. Because whether in the blessing, in the pain, or whether He says yes or no, He is worthy and deserves all of my worship and praise. I know that I can surrender control, even if it is moment my moment or day by day, to a loving Savior who cares so much for me.

Update Wayne: Wayne continues to defy the odds. He is now 7+ months out from stopping all treatment for his brain cancer. I am so glad that he has clearly communicated what he desired for his health so that I can honor it. He recently clarified a few points about his health, which will further help me honor his requests. Wayne does PT two times a week as well as speech and OT once a week. He goes to the gym a few days a week with a friend to walk the track. Sometimes living with Wayne feels like what Forest Gump described, a box of chocolate. We never know what the day will bring. Some days, Wayne's speech pretty clear and we can understand him. Other days, it is a struggle for him to communicate basic things. He just keeps life interesting.

Rebecca Update: I continue to feel stronger each day. My PT for my hip has really helped me. If I could just get things to slow down in my life, that would be even better. I am sure all the moms out there get it. Some days it is difficult to juggle Wayne's appointments, driving kids around, cleaning our Airbnb, helping my parents, and the list goes on. I collapse in bed many days just worn out. I am working on trying to figure out how to keep doing life, but also taking moments to rest. I have my next doctor appointment with blood work and immunotherapy treatment on the 28th. Just continuing to trust Jesus with my health.

Warning: Photo Dump as I work to catch up the blog!

A few weeks ago, Shan had the opportunity to go visit his best friend, Sibin, in Washington DC. They were best friends in China and God orchestrated all the details for both of them to be adopted in the US. I was so thrilled when we found Sibin's family so that Shan could stay in contact. They talk on the phone a lot and it just makes my heart so happy. Sibin was baptized and wanted Shan to be there for it. They spent a week together making amazing memories and eating lots of Chinese food! Thank you again Susan for having him!

Hot pot! Shan told me it wasn't thankfully as hot as he used to eat in China, since his tastebuds have changed.

This was the morning of his flight. I hadn't seen Shan smile this big in a long time.


They were sad to part. So thankful for such an amazing friend in Shan's life.

Graduation Sunday at church. Crazy that I had two graduates!

Since Naomi is now out of high school, she has been invited to be part of the worship team at church. I love seeing my kids serve Jesus!

Someone took this picture of Wayne praying with the girls. I was playing the piano, so I was so thankful for this special gift!

Wayne with his palliative nurse visit. She couldn't believe how well he was doing. She only said it like 100 times. 😆

Before Shan left for Washington DC, we had to make an emergency trip to Shriners to get him new liners for his prosthetic leg. It was hanging on by just a little fabric. I didn't want him to be without a leg!

Months ago, I found out that Shrek the Musical was coming to EKU. The girls love this show, so I asked them if they wanted to go. They of course said yes. Joella has watched it a few times and has the whole thing memorized. She wasn't too happy when they switched lyrics around in some of the songs or skipped songs.

She was upset that they changed the lyrics to one of her songs. 

Abigail bought her Shrek ears as an early birthday gift. 

We were privileged to attend a few weddings this summer. This was the first one of the summer.

Grace invited Wayne to dance and they had a great time together. I love his smile in the picture below. This is called making precious memories with your kids!

We have had lots of guests this summer. Our friends, the McMahon family, came for a visit during their furlough. We met them in Canada on a mission trip years ago. We just love their family!

Grace decided to save herself hundreds of dollars by changing her own brakes. She did a fabulous job. Grandpa and her dad were impressed.

A new driver in the house!! She passed with flying colors. Her tester was awesome!

We celebrated Abigail's graduation by having family over for a steak dinner. It was extra special since Abigail's boyfriend, and her grandparents from WA were there to celebrate her.

My kids are growing up. Grace and her boyfriend Davis.

Abigail and her boyfriend Elijah.

This picture cracks me up. Wayne and his dad made a bet five years ago and Wayne won! This is grandpa paying up!

Micaela has been my helper at my parent's house. She helped clean the chicken coop while I mowed. Joella has helped me pick berries too. Work on the farm is never ending.

Micaela and Joella are doing a summer swim team. I mainly use it as a fun way for them to exercise. Micaela has done two meets. Joella was a kid's camp during this meet. Micaela was excited that Grandma could come before she headed back to WA the next morning. 

This is my friend Juyi from Taiwan. We met back in 2019 when we were matched up through the UK English partner program. Unfortunately, COVID separated us, but God connected us. She is back in the states for a few months with her son. We have been enjoying some fun times together. Lord willing, next spring on our trip to Taiwan/China, she will travel with us and will be our translator. Her husband is helping us plan the trip. We hope to not only visit with her in Taiwan, but also visit the missionaries there that our church sponsors. We also hope to visit other missionaries, as well as catch up with my other friends, Wei Wei and Yuan, in China. 

I joined the girls on a hike with the youth group up at Natural Bridges. It was a beautiful morning for a hike. When we reached the top, we read through Matthew 5 and discussed how we can better live for Jesus each day. I am so thankful for health that allowed me to make this trek up the trail.

We had our first taste of Miguel's pizza.

Hiking buddies

Prayer Requests:

- Wayne: Please continue to pray for Wayne's health and for endurance for him with all his therapies. 

- Rebecca: Please pray for strength for me to juggle all the things and wisdom to know when to say no. 

- Kids: Please pray for Sophia, Shan, and Micaela as they get ready to leave this weekend for a week at encampment with the Civil Air Patrol. 

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