Wednesday, July 24, 2013


The year of 2013 is shaping up for us as one of continual transition. With Arthur, with Artmil, with Dennis turning 65 next year and being required to go on Medicare, with our health insurance, our status quo is anything but!

Because Arthur turned 18 on March 1st, we had initiated the process of becoming his legal guardians at the close of 2012. After the court appointed us his guardians in May, paper work to be filed with the state about how we plan to spend his money the first year was prepared with the lawyer's help. Since Arthur has no estate, this assumes he will receive some form of state aid funds that we would oversee and report on. Our lawyer and guardian ad litem both encouraged us to apply at the Social Security Administration on his behalf for a monthly stipend to defray his living expenses.

He was denied Social Security Disability because he has not ever worked, but was awarded Supplemental Security Income, or SSI, in less than a month! We opened a guardianship bank account for him before we applied for SSI, and within a week, two months of payments had been electronically deposited into it, pending approval! Another astounding byproduct was the fruit of the government streamlining their notoriously inefficient bureacracy: the SSI application was automatically forwarded to the DSHS system so that Arthur was also awarded medical coupons right away (also pending his approval for SSI.) This swift approval, now in place and activating these government programs, appears to have been based on the faxed blood work report establishing he does have Trisomy 21 (down syndrome) that I had kept in his files since right after his birth.

At Artmil we underwent a major change in April when Kathy left for work at her brother's firm and we hired a full time web guy. (Kathy was my daily prayer partner so adjusting to the loss of sharing and praying about our concerns has made dealing with all the other transition more difficult for me.) Dennis has joined Business Network International to find and help new customers and has increased the amount of time and effort he is giving to Artmil toward reinventing it once again to meet the changes of the times and the challenges of our economy. Therefore we have been doing less remodeling and less bluegrass. We hope to move toward semi-retirement from Artmil but this year isn't shaping up to be that transition time yet.

In a move to decrease our hefty health insurance premium, we have moved to Medi-Share as of next month. This is a Christian organization that qualifies under Obamacare as health coverage though it is not insurance but rather a method of sharing health cost needs different members have. Because Arthur has medical coupons now,  our outgo for catastrophic coverage will be a fraction of what we had been paying. And because Dennis turns 65 next year, with his going on Medicare, our premiums or share may be further reduced.

Wish I could say I have sailed through all these changes but I haven't. I have prayed and praised the Lord at times and I have complained bitterly at times and gone "on strike" in my heart. What I am learning is that fear is something to be faced and gone through, that it is part of the fallen world we live in and needs to be reckoned with to keep from being paralyzed by it. Courage is not the absence of fear (my old belief). Courage is facing the fearful circumstances with trust in God to fight the battle in faith. Refusing to complain, choosing to be thankful, to keep on praying and trusting and living one day at a time trusting in Him-- those are the lessons. To keep working when everything is hard and scary and uncomfortable and seems useless. To keep encouraging myself in the truth, to stay in the Word daily. Facing my laziness engendered by fear allowed to go unchecked hasn't been pleasant, but God is faithful. He never gives up and leaves me to myself.

We still have our little church which so far hasn't changed, so everything isn't in transition. But in another way, circumstances and people are changing all the time, they don't really stay the same-- that is just an illusion that makes us feel secure. In truth, everything is winding down in this sinful fallen world, including our bodies and minds. Only those souls who have been filled with God's Holy Spirit are delivered from this decay.  They are being renewed daily in their new, inner man by Him and they cannot be shaken when everything that can be shaken is shaken, for they are anchored on the Rock. "This world is not my home, I'm just a-passing through."