Part I is here. Check it out first then the story continues...
As we stepped out on faith, God met us there and provided our every need. We had an exceptionally large income tax refund that year, along with many friends who came to us and blessed us with financial gifts and gifts of service. We had an abundance of food gifts that were bestowed on us in various forms, bumper crops of apples, pears, tomatoes, pumpkins, and salmon. God was providing for us in a way that was more than we could ever ask or imagine. There were many times when bills were paid by unknown benefactors. I had a utility bill that would come in the mail each month with a zero balance or a credit and I didn’t have any explanation, but that some philanthropist had paid it for us.
God provided thirty days of active duty for Bear during the month of August, which helped to pay the bills as well. Because we were so good at being frugal by this time, the two army paychecks we received stretched us through another two months. And a pay miscalculation was resolved and another miraculous paycheck appeared just when we needed it most.
Finally in December, Bear started working in a good civilian job with good health benefits, a major necessity with 5 kids at home needed stitches, casts, prescriptions and glasses.
Then in January of this year Bear received orders to attend the Army’s Chaplain training school in South Carolina. This is what we had hoped for! Even though it was only for 45 days, we could stretch the paychecks and maybe catch up some bills or make needed car repairs. Plus Bear would be getting the army training under his belt so that he was one step closer to becoming an active duty chaplain.
Once he got there, he requested to be able to stay for the whole course instead of just the first part and was accepted. I was so happy for him, and proud of my soldier. Then Bear suggested that I think about coming to the spouse’s training at the end of CH-BOLC in April. Wow, that would be great, but I didn’t think it would ever happen.
Through many blessings and multiple benefactors, I was able to attend. I was so blessed by the experience and want to share many of the things I learned.
I flew into SC on Sunday and arrived late that evening. The first session of the spouses seminar didn’t start until 1300 on Monday. (Army time, that’s 1:00pm to the rest of the world.) Bear had to go to PT that morning, even though he had a hernia, he had to “attend” for accountability. (Yep, you’re here, yep, you can’t do any sit-ups, thanks for showing up, Hooah!) He came back to the room and we got ready for chapel at 0800.
It was so good just to be able to sit near my hubby and worship together with him. I missed his baritone voice strong in my ear, and his arm around my waist.
I was introduced to many of his Chaplain buddies, it’s a good thing the army has nametags on uniforms, I am so bad with names and faces. I knew that I would soon be meeting many of their wives so I tried to make mental notes for later.
The first session was back at D-Hall where we were staying so after lunch, armed with my notebook and a smile I entered the room. I made my way over to an empty space and looked around the room, lovely ladies surrounded me, smiling and chatting. I am so fearful about first introductions and stepping forward to make “first contact” so to speak. Those of you who know me well, will find that hard to believe, yet, it is very hard for me to open my mouth.
(And obviously hard for me to finish a story in one sitting!)
Next part coming up…