It Takes a Village

“It takes a village to raise a child.”
This post is a small tribute to those who have helped Rich and me raise three wild little ones turned strong, well-adjusted, productive, wonderful adults. I wanted to write “turned, by the grace of God,…” but it seems too weak for today as I realize that that “grace of God” has manifested itself in skin and bones to us through this amazing village we belong to. As a young couple away from both our families, the village meant more to us than we could ever express.
~The Sinclair’s tucked us into their family on Christmas day–a sacrifice for them as they loved their own private “family circle.” They made us feel a part of them, and we never missed a thing. And my children learned that there is no lack for those who are His…
~Butch and Karen Fridg were a strong part of our village: they both stood by us week after week as we muddled through the business of raising kids in the Lord. They fed and clothed Matthieu as he practically lived over there many week-ends. And when our house burned down to the ground, they welcomed us into their own for 10 months, never once giving the impression that we were too much, even though we truly were–overflowing love of God at work through them. And my children learned about love being a commitment…
~The Pisarcik family taught them what it means to give, and give, and give with simple joy. And my children learned about selfless giving….
~Paula Harris wove her way into our hearts and made everything fun. And my children learned that different is wonderful, and racism makes no sense…
~Our yearly camping trips with the Kuehn’s toughtened our kids up a bit, and the long nights around the fire ring built in them contentment and delight in the moment. And my children learned the beauty of nature….
~Jackie, teacher extraordinaire, taught our Daniel to play the piano. And my son learned the joy of worship with his instrument…
~Carol Affolter loved them remembering small, silly things, truly wanting to know where they were at. And my children learned the value of detail…
~ The Pivetz’ came to cheer Daniel on at basketball games. And Daniel learned about supporting others…
~The relationship that this family built with Maelys is quite out of the ordinary; Cathy became her confidante, and “grown-up” friend when Mom was a bit too close. And Maelys learned the value of friendship…
~They single-handedly handled Matthieu’s High School graduation party when Rich and I were called away because of an emergency. And Matthieu learned that provision is real…
~And then, there is Grand’ma Hasson. Not their grand’ma per se, yet Mary acted as such time and time again, loving and genuinely caring for them. She searched the entire US for a Cabbage Patch Kid for Maelys after the house fire and found one–had it shipped here. My children were a fixture at their house, playing with the dogs, eating her delicious rolls, bathing in her love. And my children learned about being cared for….
~Harry Carnahan came over when Matthieu was disfigured with poison ivy and layed hands on him. And Matthieu learned the victory of prayer…
~The Saylors opened their home to Daniel more times than I can count. It is still his favorite hang-out when he comes home to Indiana (well, Sub’s n Suds comes close). And Daniel learned the power of hospitality…
~With each birth, we were spoiled with wonderful meals for a least a week. And my children learned that their church family was for real…
~We lived in the basement apartment of the Rusiewicz’ home when we first moved into town. Their washing machine became ours, their car became ours, their food became ours. And my children learned about heavenly provision in every situation…
~The Paouncic’s, the Bucceri’s, the Boring’s, Paula Harris, Linda Yanoski, Susie Triple S, Dave Mosho, Alan Sidok and so many more spent countless Sunday dinners and evenings at our home, sharing their lives with us. And my children learned that the body of Christ is fun, and real, and wonderful…
~When my precious daughter almost died a few hundred miles away from home, Jennie and Walsa took care of her. And Maelys learned that we are always protected in Him…
~When we lost our home, we were clothed, fed, furnitured, strengthened, supported. And my children learned that it takes a village…

I am hesitant to stop here, as I haven’t mentioned many by name. God used each powerful part of the village to make my three beautiful children who they are today.

Thank YOU, Village–Jesus with skin on.

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7 comments

  1. I, too, am so grateful for the people that the Lord used to mold my children when they were growing up. This was a great post, Barbara, and reminded me that “the mind of a man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps”. We have lots of plans and dreams for our kids, but He is the one who knows exactly how to accomplish His best in their lives. Kind of takes the pressure off, doesn't it? ~~~~~Paula

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  2. What a beautiful, glorious tribute to the wonderful people God blessed your family with. I think of the statue of the saviour in the village in France. It was destroyed in the bombings. The village restored it, but the hands were never recovered. They left it that way, with the understanding that THEY were His hands. Thank you for this wonderful message. And for sharing it on NOBH!

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