Chapter one, starts with a baby girl being born, nearly fifty years ago, with a handicap known as Spina Bifida to an unsuspecting couple with three boys already in the family. I cannot fathom what these parents felt when they heard the doctor say "there is a problem with your baby and she needs to be rushed to Columbia University hospital". While the mother stayed in the hospital in Sedalia, the father and an aunt took the baby to start the extensive testing to see what could be done. Several months later and several tests later the parents were told it does not look good that she will walk or ever be able to have babies in the future. God stepped in long ago and had a different plan that would play out.
Chapter two,is this same girl and she is now eleven years old and no one can tell she has a handicap. This was a monumental year because as she was growing up and attending a small, Southern Baptist, country church she was being taught about Jesus and His great love for us and was being shown through their lives what it meant to be a Christian. During a crusade, on a football field, she heard Jesus calling her name and inviting her to become His child.
Chapter three, is filled with the Jr. High and High School years. Let's just say there was plenty of drama, boyfriends, more drama, and loves lost. Junior year was a great year because she met a great guy who told her he loved her on the first date. He was a Senior and had aspirations of becoming a lawyer. I wonder if this country bumpkin thought she struck it rich? God stepped in long ago and had a different plan that would play out.
Chapter four, he was twenty, she was nineteen and they did marry but God was taking him on a path that led to the ministry.
Chapter five, she became pregnant seven months after they got married. After telling her parents she was expecting, she did not expect the reaction she received from them. They were very concerned about her health and the health of the baby. God stepped in long ago and had a different plan that would play out. During her 5th month in the pregnancy she got a call in the middle of the night that her dad had a massive heart attack and needed to get to the hospital as soon as possible. As they approached the emergency room she saw her brother and another person outside the doors wailing. She knew he was gone. He had a relationship with Jesus and she knew she would see him again someday but she also knew he would not see his grandson when he was born and be a big part of his life. They went through a fog for a few months but knew the day their son Joshua was born that he was born at a time when they all needed him. Almost one year later another phone call came from the mother saying that her brother had been on a three wheeler accident and was at the hospital and to get their quick. The fog came back! She knew he was gone, just by the sound of her voice. John was Joshua's best buddy and only twenty three years old and had his whole life ahead of him! We had Joshua's first birthday on the day of John's funeral. God stepped in long ago and had a different plan that would play out. During these difficult months the loving people of God rallied around them and lifted them up in prayer and friendship. They were serving in a small church in Sedalia and could feel the love and devotion.
Chapter six, they go off to seminary thinking it would be four years but ended up being seven years. God was sovereign and saw to it they were taken good care of and loved by the two churches they served in Arkansas. It was a time of spiritual growth and reliance on God and they became stronger because of the separation from the family back home.
I am Julie Paul and this is my story. I am always amazed by God's grace and goodness throughout my life. He has brought me through good times and not so good times but I know without a doubt God stepped in long ago and has a plan that will play out. God bless you as you go on your journey and share your story!
Auntie M's Bookshelf is very excited to have Julie Paul as an author
on this blog! We hope you enjoy her story, insights and inspirations as she shares the story of God's great love in her life and the lives of those around her. Thank you so much, Julie!