At Just the Right Time

From James:

You could think of everything that people have done for us as individual instances of compassion, but we are convinced it is God working.

On Friday night (January 14), Ashleigh, Joy, and Elizabeth (three single ladies at our church) hosted a sleepover for our girls at Ashleigh’s apartment. When Ashleigh initially asked me about the possibility, I was a bit nervous about bringing it up to the girls. Would they be afraid to spend the night away from home? Not a chance. When I asked Audrey and Lindsay, they were beside themselves, jumping up and down and screaming with delight.

We could barely fit the girls’ innumerable items of luggage into Ashleigh’s car when she and Joy came by to pick them up. Like any other sleepover for girls of their ages, this one involved very little sleep. They watched movies, ate junk food, made “glow in the dark” T-shirts, made a music video, etc. The three hostesses soon realized that they weren’t entirely prepared for the sleep deprivation about which my girls were so enthusiastic. Word has it that Audrey (the youngest) was the greatest sleep depriver of them all. The last shall be first, and the first last.

So Young and I spent Friday night in Reston, our old stomping grounds where we met and courted. I decided to do so at the last minute, wanting to take advantage of the moment to make it special for So Young.

Our dear friend at church, who we only met days ago, has been a great blessing to us. She has showered So Young with gifts, advice, help, and care, all based on her experience in similar circumstances, which makes what she has done all the more special to So Young.

Laurie is watching all three girls every Sunday night for three hours so that So Young and I can get practical things done, go on a date, or just relax and do nothing. This is so “Laurie” of her to do — something immediately useful and exactly what we need. She is our neighbor of over ten years, and I have to tell you that before any of this happened, I was thinking what a blessing it is to know them, not aware then of how much of a blessing it really is.

So many are fasting and praying for us, even people we hardly know.

My coworkers just finished two weeks of meals for us. One single guy at work, in his twenties, made his family’s favorite meal for us. It really shocked me that he could do this, frankly, but more so it spoke volumes about his character.

On Sunday, I told an old friend of mine that this has been the worst of times for our family, but also the best because of the love we have received from so many caring people. So Young says that it is like Christ’s love for us. We didn’t ask that He lay down his life, but he did it at just the right time — when we needed it most.


7 Responses

  1. From Mom:

    Your reference to our girls made me laugh. I’m not surprised that bouncy, bouncy Audrey kept everyone awake. The girls got ready for school really early so that they could pack before school started. Ashleigh, Joy and Elizabeth were favorites before their gift of love, but now our girls will be first in their fan club.

    Laurie is like an aunt to our girls. There is nothing that one can do that blesses a grandmother more than love one’s family. Laurie goes beyond that. She has befriended me as well.

    Praying people are powerful people. Not because they have the power, but because they are intimately close to the most powerful, God.

    I’m also impressed by the loving gifts of your coworkers. I don’t worry about whether or not you have food because of the genrous gifts of meals and food.

    Thanks to everyone!

    Mom alias Nanna Gage

  2. So glad you have such caring and loving people by your side. Hugs to you my friends.

  3. So Young and James –

    Though I do not know you, I want you to know that I too will be praying for you both, as well as your family. Your neighbor and a sweet friend of mine – Laurie Duhnke shared with me about you. I moved away from Westridge this past summer to New York due to my husband’s Navy transfer. I am part of a bible study up at West Point, and I will add you to our prayer chain. I have met a couple of Korean friends there who are huge prayer warriors – they too would be happy to pray for So Young in “her mother tongue”! We adopted our daughter from S. Korea twelve years ago – so I have an affinity for making new “Korean freinds”!

    Like the biblical story of Jonah, you too are now navigating a life interrupted. I pray that you will cling to the truths of God’s sovereignty and character. I am learning in my bible study that the interrupted life is the priveleged and significant life. It seems to be at these times that we look up and see the face of God as never before. Thank you for your authenticity and testimony. Who knows how many will come to know Jesus through your writing and watching the marathon you are running.

    Praying for you,

    Amy Tate

    • Amy,

      So great to hear from you. It is also great to know that you are praying for us. And thank you for having so many people pray for us. I did a web search the other day and discovered that a church in Kentucky is praying for us, as is a big, local church. I know there are many others. It is a sweet realization to know that we are part of such a large family.


  4. i think this is one of the reasons i wish we were not moving around as often.i feel like when we start making frieneds is time to pack up and move.but i would not traid it for nothing.i have met some many amazing people.thats just somthing i will remember for rest of my life.
    but i am so happy that you guys have so many amazing friends.
    maybe because i come from europe were most of the people this days care anly about them selfs i will say that in times like this you will find who your true friends are.i know i’m pessimist.LOL

    but it’s funny what you sed about Audrey.laura is the same way.that girl will be the first one up us and the last one out.i wish i had even little bit of taht energy.

    • Inga,

      Our amazing friends include you! Thank you so much for the meal you provided the other day. We all loved it, even the kids, and as I’m sure you know, making something that all the kids like is a big accomplishment.


  5. Your story has giving me a much better view of humanity, nothing but negativity in the news. It is great reading about the positive side of people. You all are amazing thanks. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

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