Looking back over the past 10 years it's amazing to see how far the Lord has brought me. Many people moan about getting to be 30, but I honestly can't thank the Lord enough for bringing me to this point. I lost several friends before they ever reached the age of 30 and realize I'm only here by the grace of God. HE is the one who gave me life, saved my life and continues to allow me to live from day to day. He doesn't have to, but HE does!
10 years ago today I had just received my first "snail mail" letter from a young man named Scott. My parents had met him, but I had not. Little did I know how he would change my life:).
At 21 I was engaged to marry him and packing up my room in preparation for moving to a new country!
At 22 I was expecting our first child and VERY sick. There was extreme nausea and weight loss, but the Lord spared my life and brought into this world our first little blessing, Elyssia Anne Holloway. A week late and weighing in at 6 and a half lbs. We moved to Gibsons, B.C. 2 weeks after she was born and spent the next 6 months there. God gave us that time with my dad and I'm VERY thankful for that! It was also the place that we drew closer to God and each other, as a couple. We found our marriage and our relationship with God strengthened in the time that we had away from all the expectations that others had of us. We found joy in serving the Lord because we wanted to and learned to truly love and serve others as Christ wanted us to.
At 23 we bought our first house in Montrose, B.C. We enjoyed picking fruit from the trees in our yard and canning it in preparation for long winters:).
At 24 we found that we were expecting our 2nd child and unexpectedly had to say Goodbye, here on earth, to my Dad. This year was full of rejoicing, sadness, travels to the island and so much more. I was still sick with this pregnancy, but once again the Lord brought me through. We named our second child Garrison Stuart Prisk Holloway, in honor of Dad-Gary Stuart Prisk. We look forward to seeing him again in Heaven. Garrison and Gideon Stuart, his cousin, were the first 2 grandchildren that Dad wasn't able to do the dedication service for. We chose to rejoice amidst the sadness of those times.
Shortly after my 25th birthday we discovered that God was blessing us with our 3rd child! He was born a couple weeks early in March and we named him Caleb Sterling Holloway. I can't imagine what life would be like without this little man or his siblings. They bring so much excitement and joy to our lives:).
The summer that I turned 26 the Lord showed us that he wanted us to move and start a church in Kindersley, Saskatchewan. Busy times... We planned to move the following Spring, but due to my Father in Law's health, the Lord had us move in December.
In January of the year that I turned 27 the Lord gave us an acreage close to Kindersley. He provided a place to rent for church and a new chapter in our lives began. We found out we were expecting our 4th right before we held our first service:). The Lord blessed us with another safe delivery and provided for us through the long days of sickness and extra work with the church plant. We started our homeschool adventure with Elyssia and Kiersten Blythe Holloway arrived in October. She has been a great blessing to us.
The year I turned 28 the Lord gave us our own church building and we had the blessing of seeing him pay it off too! It's been a great blessing and we enjoy all the extra fellowship that we're able to have because of it.
The Spring before I turned 29 we made an epic journey. We hadn't seen most of my family in several years and the Lord allowed us to drive to Georgia and spend a couple weeks with them. He also kept us safe and helped the kids to be well behaved for the majority of the trip. I call those miracles:). We found out shortly after arriving home that we were expecting our 5th blessing. Adelaide Blythe Holloway was born about 5 months after my birthday and she's currently adored by all her siblings and parents:). Her smile lights up the room and cheers up those around her on a regular basis.
That brings us up to today. Today I am 30. It's a day that many dread because they think it means they're old;). I looked forward to it over the past year and thank the Lord that He allowed me to live each day and through all these years and experiences. Our family vacation a couple months ago was the main present, but honestly, the gifts of salvation, family, friends and life far outweigh any earthly gifts that I could ever receive.
Thank you Lord for this 30th year!