“…But where sin abounded, grace abounded much more…”
Merry Christmas dear friends and family! I had the joy of chatting via text with my cousin Judy last week and she asked for a family picture. It prompted me to do a small order of photos for those we hold near and dear. I have always enjoyed keeping in contact through annual Christmas cards, however we get to stay connected with many through Facebook now. Consequently a few of you will be receiving this in your mailbox, but the majority of you will receive it digitally online. It has been what I lovingly call a brutal and beautiful year.
That is why I chose the above scripture for this 2013’s Christmas letter. This “grace abounded much more” has been so true in our lives. If I’ve learned anything, it is that none of us know what tomorrow holds.
In February my mom had a stroke and she received an IV med called t-PA that had three possible outcomes: no change, fatal brain bleed or reversal of the stroke. The medication reversed most of the stroke and now Bethany lives in a new facility with fabulous, caring friends at “Hour Home Senior Care” just five min. away.
In March our daughter Sarah was such a confident, beautiful bride! It was our joy to welcome Tanner James Hutchinson to the family! Thanks to them we got an extra international visit from Marie & Christian and girls since they were all a part of the wedding. It was a wonderful time for all of their guests.
On Memorial Day weekend we launched “Klein’s Country Cottage” with our first guests. We have had so much fun working together to create a source of income for retirement! It has been consistently full. We have met all sorts of great people! If you would like to see it – here is the address: www.vrbo.com/472934
What was supposed to become our retirement income, the Lord saw fit to use to sustain us in the days ahead. The Friday before Father’s day, Danny was laid off of a “sinking ship” company. This was a blessing as he was the only one who received severance. Soon afterward, one by one, his co-workers left on their own accord.
In September Danny insisted I continue on with my previously planned trip to Moldova for three weeks to visit with Marie and Christian. I was able to reconnect with Mercy and took a train trip to visit Romania!
Speaking of Mercy, she is here visiting with her sister Addysen, along with her mama & daddy! Since our six children are grown and all doing well, I thought I’d tell you a little bit about each of our grandchildren! Little Mercy (2 ½) has found her “voice” and is a little affectionate lover. She feels very strongly about things, let’s call her passionate! She calls me “Boppie” and no-one knows why.
Emma (4) is my special girl and always has a hug for her Grammie. She has an incredible smile and is getting tall! Addy (5) is already bilingual, speaking both Romanian and English. She critiques any Romanian word I try to say! Spencer (6) was big enough to participate in our church’s Christmas program. My heart did a flip when “Joseph” used ASL to tell his Grammie during the performance “I love you”. It is easy to enjoy your grandchildren when their parents are doing such a super job working with them and lovingly raising them!
Watson, our miniature schnauzer, just passed his AKC Canine Good Citizenship test. This is the foundation of him becoming a hearing dog for me! He already is alerting me to things I miss hearing. My next goal is to teach him to alert me when the cell phone rings. I often cannot hear it or tell where the sound is coming from.
We are starting a new business called Integrity Sales Consultants and are working out the final contract details to factory rep for six different companies. Danny will also be doing private consulting on a job by job basis. I will be handling the financial side of the company and the VRBO. We enjoy working together! We are shocked at how the past six months have been so brutal yet beautiful. God’s grace has truly abounded more!
SO our future hope is to grow the company, possibly hiring another salesman, and eventually traveling to Romania during the summer months. We have a deep desire to go and work alongside the Burtt’s and help them in any way they need. In September, I had the privilege of helping one afternoon with abandoned babies.
Unless a volunteer comes, these little ones have diapers changed only twice and propped-fed three bottles a day. I held a little curly dark haired girl (3 mos.) that was smaller than any of our newborns ever were. It was sobering to me that Isadora’s first years were in a similar environment without any volunteers. It was surreal.
This is the message the Lord has placed on my heart for these children. There is brokenness everywhere in this world….but where that brokenness abounds, His grace abounds even more! This we know is true. Merry Christmas! Danny & Bonnie
I have a Maker, He formed my heart. Before even time began my life was in His hands.
I have a Father, He calls me his own. He’ll never leave me no matter where I go.
He knows my name, He knows my every thought.
He sees each tear that falls, and hears me when I call.
He Knows My Name by Tommy Walker