We are all Spiritual Fledglings

Every day I come to work, I drive through the same gate. It’s a beautiful gate, really a bridge, that let’s you onto base. As you cross the water, there is an old dock, out of service at this point. While it does not provide space for people to use, a certain Osprey (Sea Hawk)  has taken it to nest her young. Every day I drive on the bridge, she is there, nesting and feeding her 2 young Osprey’s. Wikipedia tells me that the birds will stay in that nest for 8-10 weeks, until it is time for them to take flight, and eventually be on their own. This part of the process is called fledging. But for those 8-10 weeks, the mother takes complete care of the babies, tending to their every need. She will even sacrifice her food supply so the babies survive. But there comes that time, almost instinctively, when the mother knows that it is time for the babies to do their own thing. If birds were capable to think like humans do, this moment in the young birds life would be a troublesome time, knowing that the big vast world lies ahead. They would certainly be afraid knowing that the nest, and the old dock it’s built on, will no longer keep them safe from everything. Maybe you see where I am going with this, if not, let me explain.

In this scenario, God is the adult Osprey, we are the babies. From the time we are born, we are in that spiritual nest. We go to church, study the word, and continually grow our faith in The Lord. Then one day (most certainly not 8-10 weeks), God tells us it is time to go, time to take that first flight. He feels comfortable enough knowing that we can handle that flight, and go out into the world. The timing for this “flight” is different for everyone. To be honest with you, I think the green light for me was just about 3 months ago. Yep, instead of 8-10 weeks, it took me 24+ years. I should point out that there is a distinct difference in using the term fledging, and fledgling. The latter means that the bird will continue to be dependant on it’s parent to take care of it. I am a fledgling in the spiritual sense (and my mom may say the physical too, just depends). I rely on Jesus for my spiritual feeding, and I know that I can’t tackle the world without continuing to fly back to him.

I look at it this way: God has been prepping Emily and I for this situation for a while now. He was equipping two totally un-equipped individuals to undertake a journey they had no original right taking. We prayed, read, and spoke with people during this whole process. When God allowed Harrison to come home, I fully believe is the same time He told Emily and I, “It’s time for you to go. Fly and spread My word. Know that I will always be here. It will be tough, and you WILL have bumps, and you WILL get bruises. But know that I will always be here to fly back to. I will nurse you back to health. Remember that you cannot do this without me. Now go.”

A few things I would like to point out. First, you will not find in the Bible a place where God says he won’t give you something you can’t handle. I fall into the lure of saying that, but in all honesty, it is not there. If He never gave us something we could not handle, there would be no need for God, because we would be self-sufficient. However, I do wholly believe that WITH God, there is nothing we can’t get through. It says in Matthew 11:28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28) Secondly, I believe we are ALL spiritual fledglings, or we should be. The second you think you can get through something without God, is the second that the devil will snatch you up.

I was talking with a very dear friend of mine today. I used this analogy as well. We are all in a spiritual war. Our opponent, the devil, exists in many forms. It may be in the form of tough decisions to make, alcohol, drugs, finances, health. We are all in the front line, fighting. Back in revolutionary time, each unit of the military would have its own place to fight. The foot soldiers would be in the front, and more specifically, the Field General would be in the rear. He would sit on his horse and check out the overall scope of battle. The perspective of a foot soldier is vastly different than that of the Field General. The soldier see’s directly in front of him, and many times it seems like they may be overwhelmed. That’s precisely why the FIeld General is in the rear. He dictates where re-enforcements need to come in, to hold the line. God is our Field General, and while we are fighting these spiritual battles, while we are feeling completely overwhelmed, He will call in the reinforcements right on time. I believe that reinforcement’s could come in the form of a phone call from a friend, or one of the many other ways God sends us that message to say “I am with you.”

I know this has been a very long post, but I have had alot on my mind. I appreciate each and every one of you who take the time to read and share this. You may not know, but you serve as my “reinforcements” every time I get a comment, text, phone call. It let’s me know that even though the situation is still rough, God is with me. We love each and every one of you.

God Bless,

James

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | 9 Comments

A One month letter from Mom and Dad

Here is a letter from each Emily and I.

Dear Harrison,

Happy One Month Angelversary Son! I can’t believe it’s been a month since I last saw you.   So much has happened since you left this world, and it makes daddy really excited. Remember how I told you the night I held you in the hospital that I would never let the world forget about you? Well, your mommy, daddy, your family, and all our friends are working very hard to make that happen. We were also thinking about starting this group, who will help families who went through what we did.

It’s been really tough without you around buddy. Daddy see’s all his friends who have babies, and sometimes daddy gets really jealous. But then daddy remembers that Jesus gave you to us for a very specific reason. See you had to go live with Jesus so that other people here on earth could hear about your story. Harrison, your story tells about the love of God, and the love between your mom and dad. So all of daddy’s friends who may be reading this should not feel bad, but be proud. All of us are God’s children, and we will all reunite with one another when the time is right.

This whole month without you has not been easy. But daddy has been reading alot of books (kind of like when daddy would read books to you while you were in mommy’s belly). These books have given daddy some knowledge (that’s the stuff you get when you learn things) about grieving, and it makes me feel better. The easiest way for daddy to feel better is to talk to God about everything. I have been sleeping better lately, because I also know that you are watching over me. I made you and Jesus a promise last night. I told you that I was going to make sure that you and Jesus would be proud of the way I acted, and the way I treated people. I am going to do my absolute best keep that promise. There will be times when daddy doesn’t keep that promise, and I will be ashamed of it. But luckily your heavenly father will forgive me, that’s why he died on the cross. He died so when mommy and daddy’s make mistakes, they can still get to heaven and see their children. When we all get to heaven, we will praise Jesus, and laugh and talk. I can’t wait for that day Harrison, but until it’s time, I have to stay on earth.

I love you so much, and miss you like none other. Happy 1 month angelversary Harrison,

Your dad.

 

Dear Baby Harry,

Hello my precious baby boy! I can’t believe it’s been a month since I first (but not last) saw your perfect little face.  It pains me so much to write this letter because it makes me miss you even more than I already do.  I think about you constantly and sometimes wished you were still in my belly. I miss feeling you practice your karate and seeing you move around a bunch when I ate ice cream.  I know you would have had a sweet tooth just like your momma.

Harrison, your daddy and I are so incredibly proud of who you are and how much of an impact you have had on this earth.  You have changed, not only me and daddy, but hundreds of others are inspired by your story, and I am honored to call you my son. You have taught us to trust in Jesus’ plan no matter what, which is sometimes easy to forget. You have taught us to not be afraid of witnessing to others about how amazing our God is. And you have taught us to be strong and never lose hope in what our future holds because everything happens for a reason.

It hurts so much to know that I will never be able to take you swimming or help you finger paint or even kiss your little toes, but I know once I get to heaven I’ll be able to do all of those things, and so much more!  You have made heaven sound even more heavenly than it already was and I can’t wait to experience it with you, but until then, someone has to wash your daddy’s undies. Harrison, thank you for coming into my life and being my very own little guardian angel.  I love you more than words can express.  Be a good boy.

XOXO,

Momma

p.s. I found this picture the other day and IMMEDIATELY thought of you. Take away the hair and purse and it’s you! I love you

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

A Child’s Point of View

Emily and I came to a realization this week. We are pretty giving people (especially Emily. She puts the needs of herself aside frequently for ANYONE else), and for lack of a better word, pride has dictated that it is difficult to accept any “charity”. However God has been working on us in this issue. Our pride has been stripped like whittiling a twig. We are learning to accept help from people, whether it is emotionally, financially, or physically. This facet of being humble is one we are just gaining experience in. See, for some people, being able to bless others in any of the ways listed above in turn blesses them. We went from looking at it in a prideful “We don’t like charity” kind of way to “God uses everyone in different ways, and you shouldn’t fight God” kind of way.

 

I just finished reading the book called, “Heaven is for real” by Todd Burpo. It tells the account of a small boy who “dies” and goes to heaven. While it is a touching story, the part I clung to most is where the child describes seeing his kid sister, whom had been miscarried before he was born. The girl recoginized the young boy, and it was just a reassurance that God loves every child, no matter if they never took a breath on this earth, or live to be 100. We are all God’s children, and He loves us so much. It is so encouraging to me to know I will get to meet my son one day, and have a conversation with him. It also serves as a personal accountability issue. I want my son to know that everything his earthly father did was to glorify God. I know that as a sinful human I will not be able to achieve this, but I can certainly strive for perfection. It has made me think about the words I say before I say them. Not only am I accountable to God for my actions, but I have my son to be accountable too.

 

You can believe what you want to about heaven, and the facts surrounding it. But take comfort in knowing that our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ Loves EVERY man, woman, child on this earth so much. It does say that children hold a special place in God’s heart. “Then Jesus called for the children and said to the disciples, ‘Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of God belongs to those who are like these children.’” – Luke 18:16

I encourage you to be honest with God when praying. Understand that He knows exactly how you feel before you even say it. You don’t have to have a PhD or Master’s to pray. Pray with the candidness of a child. I ask specifically that you pray for the Yusko family tonight. Many of you who read this do already, but I am asking you to keep them in your prayers. God is bigger than trisomy 18. He is bigger than anything you can imagine.

 

God Bless,

James and Emily.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

“Who are YOU to doubt MY plan?”

That is the overwhelming question I am getting from God lately. Every single time we begin to lose faith, or stop trusting, God comes through. Things the last few weeks were getting really bad (to us, at least). I basically said to God, “So taking my child away from me forever wasn’t enough? You had to just pile it on by screwing with our finances, our emotions, and everything else?”

God said to me, James, take a breath. Realize who you are talking to. I gave my ONLY son, who died on the cross, not only for your sins, but everyone elses. Yet He did not complain. 

Just as of a few days ago, we thought we were going to have to move out and find a new place. I told you we got that a notice, saying that our rent was being increased. The Lord provided once more and we got a phone call, and just like that, Emily got a full-time job for the summer! Man, how petty was I acting? How many times will it take me to understand that God is IN CONTROL. (Bolded and Italicized for emphasis)

Let me repeat that: GOD IS IN CONTROL

As mere mortals it is so easy for us to epitomize our struggles, as we lack the overall perspective. Many times we are given hindsight after the fact, and we see that things were taken care of. Hindsight may be 20/20, but foresight equals faith.

Proverbs 3:5- Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding

God Bless,

The Mummerts

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

We are starting a Non-Profit

Part of Emily and I’s vision was to also start a Non-Profit organization, which would almost have a direct correlation with the 5k. Trying to organize a 5k is already alot, but we thought why not just add a non-profit to the mix? In all seriousness though, we have been getting questions to what we want to use money for with the 5k, etc.

It has been laid on our hearts to help out families who are going through something similar to what we did. Not specifically Trisomy 18, but a pregnancy with alot of difficulties. With the amount of bills and other financial things that come with high-risk pregnancies, any kind of unexpected relief would be a welcome sight to many families.

I have talked with some people who are either in the process of setting one up, or who have done it, and they all said it was much easier when you had a lawyer who would draw up the paperwork. There are many legality steps with a Non-Profit, and its less stress if you have one who helps do much of that paperwork. We obviously cannot afford a lawyer, so this why I am bringing this up. If anyone who reads this has it laid on their hearts, and would be interested in helping (pro-bono) or knows someone who just may, we would appreciate it more than you know.  This is the great thing about the body of Christ. Everyone has their own skillset God has given us, and when we put them all together great things can happen.

Many exciting things are happening with the 5k/Non-Profit efforts. So many of you have reached out offering your help, and as we get more details together, I will be calling/emailing/reaching out to you. It’s a blessing to see the passion many of you have for this, it means so much to Emily and I, and I know Harrison is in heaven smiling down right now.

Romans 12:3-5
3 For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you. 4 Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5 so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.

 

God Bless,

The Mummerts

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

God is good all the time, and all the time God is good

 

This piece of Chalk Wallpaper for the longest time said, “It’s a boy!!” Emily and I just realized yesterday that it was probably time for a change. Emily asked me what I thought we should write…so I thought about it, and after a while, came to what you see above.

Today we received something in the mail saying that our rent was being raised, and then got a phone call no later than 20 minutes later saying Emily’s grandma was in the hospital with congestive heart failure (prayers for her would be appreciated!) I guess it’s best summed up by what a friend commented on in an earlier blog post:

“Hang on to our Savior and to one another!  Satan is no wuss, and he knows how to fight dirty. But our Savior has already won your victory, so all will be well.  His grace is sufficient!  You’ll be telling us how he brought you through this time in another post not too long from now.  “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.” – Isa 43:2″

 

This is precisely the reason we put that on our chalkboard. God IS good ALL the time. Satan wants nothing more than for us to come on here and talk about how bad we have it and blame God for it. Nope, not gonna happen Satan. We may come on here and explain some of the situation, but we will praise OUR GOD through the storm. (Coincidentally it is storming right now).

We have to find joy’s in the little things in life right now. Here are some instances in which we do:

^Getting to facetime with our Nephew Bryson

^Catching our dog Diesel in the act of peeing on another dog we are watching (Sorry Bowie family!!)

^Enjoying a day with my beautiful wife :)

^Who doesn’t love endless root beer floats from Red Robin?

 

Take a moment this weekend and enjoy the little things friends.

God Bless,

James and Emily

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

Who do you turn to when times are rough?

As we start to settle back in Virginia, things have not gotten any easier. The house is getting back in order though, and my Air Force family has graciously provided us meals for a while. I’m going to be real with you, our family still needs prayer, which I know many of you still are praying. The Devil has layed it on our family so thick it’s hard to breathe right now. Part of me thinks back to the book of Job. Our story is no where near Job’s, but it certainly feels like it. Not only have we lost Harrison, it seems like everything else is crashing.

I understand that early in marriage, things are supposed to be rough. For some juvenile reason, Sum 41′s In Too Deep lyrics come to mind:

The faster we’re falling,
We’re stopping and stalling.
We’re running in circles again
Just as things were looking up
You said it wasn’t good enough.
But still we’re trying one more time.

Maybe we’re just trying too hard.
When really it’s closer than it is too far

Cause I’m in too deep, and I’m trying to keep,
Up above in my head, instead of going under.
Cause I’m in too deep, and I’m trying to keep,
Up above in my head, instead of going under.
Instead of going under.

 

Emily and I have been trying so hard to do things right. But no matter what we do it feels like we are sinking, or get the shaft. For instance, we are trying to get ahold of the death certificate. We were told it would take 7-10 business days for it to be sent. Harrison went to the Lord on the 29th, so that time period has long gone. On our way back we tried to pick it up, only to be told it wasn’t in. Ok, fine, things get held up. I tried to call today only to be told there is no way to tell me over the phone if its even arrived. So I have to drive 2 hours one way to find out. If it’s not there (after waiting 40 minutes in line) then we just wasted 4 hours. The devil has attacked us financially, emotionally, spiritually, and any other way possible. I feel like we are being kicked repeatedly while already down.

So we have turned to the only person possible, God. Through all of this we have trusted that He will take care of us. We have not waivered on this belief, but it has not made it any easier. We have not changed our belief that God won’t give us anything we can handle, but we are still human. We have been broken down, battered, but I promise you, we will still praise God through this. We know somehow, someway, we will come out of this stronger than ever. God has brought Emily and I closer than ever, both to each other and to Him.

 

Friends, I ask that you specifically pray that God surrounds us with His comfort. I want to say thank you so much for the kind words and support that you have poured on, its close to the only thing thats kept us going. We love all of you.

 

God Bless,

James and Emily

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | 16 Comments