Saturday, April 29, 2006

A surreal and scary night

As I am typing these words in the light of morining, last night's events seem like a bad dream. I have to share what happened with you all, partly just to get it off my chest and mostly because I must testify about how God protected our family from a horrific tragedy.

We decided to have a spur of the moment cookout with our neighbors last night. We had just finished eating, and all the kids were playing and jumping on the trampoline. A car pulled slowly into our driveway, about 30 feet away from where we were sitting. Dan, my husband, recognized the car as belonging to a man who has a prearranged service with our funeral home. Even though it was a little late, I didn't think it was too unusual since people stop by frequently to talk to Dan or ask questions about their accounts. However, as I heard my husband's voice, I sensed something was wrong.

I turned back around to look at the car and saw Dan leaned into the driver's side. He appeared to be struggling with the man, and I heard him say,"What are you doing?" I got up to see what was going on, and as I got about to the front bumper of the car, I heard Dan say, "He's got a gun, get the kids into the house!" I could see that Dan was still struggling with the man, but turned and ran to get the kids to safety. As one of the other adults called 911 on his cell phone, I rushed into our neighbors's home, where I stayed with the children. The other adults were still outside. For several long and scary minutes, we waited inside, away from the windows, not having any idea what was happening outside. My daughter was hysterical, and I asked her what we do when we are scared. She answered, "pray" and my children and I hit our knees right there in the kitchen, along with our neighbor's kids, and prayed fiercely.

Finally, our neighbor came into the house and told us everyone was OK. The police had arrived and taken the man into custody. Apparantly, this man has a terminal illiness and severe mental health issues. It also appeared that he had been drinking. He told the police that he had decided to take his own life, and in his confusion and despair, believed that it would be most appropriate to commit the act at the funeral home. However, his gun was fully loaded, and we will probably never know exactly what was in his mind.

I eventually learned that when Dan approached the car, the man told him to get the kids into the house. He saw a snubnosed shotgun on the floorboard as the man reached for it, and Dan grabbed it at the same time. Dan was able to get his hand over the trigger guard, and he and the man struggled over the gun, with the man trying to pry Dan's fingers away so he could reach the trigger. Dan was eventually able to wrestle the gun away from the man and unload it just before the police arrived.

I cannot express with words how proud I am of my husband. His courage and fast thinking saved that man from harming himself. I am humbled by the knowledge that he was willing to sacrifice his own safety to protect his family. Greater love has no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. John 15:13

Truly God's hand of protection was on us last night. Our decision to cookout was spontaneous, and if we hadn't, no one would have been outside to stop the man, or even worse, the kids might have been playing outside alone. I know God gave Dan the strength to get the gun away from that man and at the same time keep the trigger covered.

I would appreciate your prayers, in thanking the Lord for His protection, for my children as they deal with the trauma of the incident, and especially for the man and his family. He so desperately needs healing and the hope of Jesus.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Elijah's first day of kindergarten

I had big plans to start kindergarten with Elijah last fall, but between moving and a baby, it never really seemed to happen. He's been ready for quite a while now, and after weeks and weeks of asking, I finally caved and agreed to teach the poor child. Isn't that sad?

Here's a picture of the kindergartener on his first day:

So, enrollment at the Krabel Academy is up by 50%. With just two days under our belt, he's doing very well. I treasure the opportunity to teach my children. When I started homeschooling, I thought I was doing it for my kids. Six years later, I realize that my calling to homeschool has been a gift from God to me.

Monday, April 17, 2006


I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday. Ours was so nice. We went to Sunrise Service at 6:00, and my daughter, Katie, and I played a flute duet. Then we went to our regular 9:00 service, and then to my Aunt's for dinner. The rain held off and the kids were able to enjoy playing outside with their many cousins.

Here is a picture of our family in our Easter finery:

Monday, April 3, 2006

Basic Training

I recently attended a Hearts at Home convention. If you ever have an opportunity to attend one, you should. They are very fun and very encouraging.

During one of the seminars this year, the speaker said something that really stuck with me. She said that as mothers, we are "raising an army useful for the Lord."

I have been mulling that statement over for several weeks now, and I am thinking that I may need to change my perspective on homeschooling. Not that this is anything new. My perpective on homeschooling is always changing as God continues change me.

Am I raising an army useful for the Lord?

I'm not sure. Many days my troops in training spend more time fighting with one another than preparing to someday fight against powers of darkness. We have become mired down in the daily grind: academics, chores, music lessons, etc. When people ask me why I homeschool, I still tell them how we want to disciple our children and give them a solid Biblical foundation, but to be honest, if you had observed our homeschool for the last few weeks, you probably wouldn't have seen much evidence of discipleship.

We are very "behind" according to our school calendar. We started late and have had many interruptions. The past two months, I have been trying to cram more and more math, history, science, spelling and grammar into our days to catch up. I have felt a persistent sense of urgency, as though something terrible will happen if we don't get finished before the end of the summer.

That sense of urgency has been noticably lacking, however, in our spiritual training. As I strain to sqeeze in more academics into our day, Bible time, devotions, and prayer time are slowly squeezed out. What's wrong with this picture? While I have been so distracted and stressed about wordly standards of education, my soldiers have been getting out of step. Disipline issues are taking more and more of my time and attention.

My brother is a captain in the Army. He was deployed to Iraq six months ago. Just a few months prior to his deployment, he was given command of a company of soldiers who had not been well trained. Their previous commander had been negligent in his duties. Without the proper training and leadership, this company of soldiers was ill-prepared for war. Not only would they have been ineffective in their missions, but their very lives were at stake if someone didn't line them out and get some discipline and order in the ranks. It was not easy, but my brother did just that, and the company has successfully served in one of the most dangerous parts of Bagdhad with minimal casualties.

I do not want to send my little army out into the world ill-prepared for war. I want them to be effective in the work the Lord has for them. Their souls and the souls of others are at stake. So tomorrow, it's basic training time. If I truly want to raise an army useful to the Lord, I must refocus my attention and energy on Christ, and point my children towards Him also. I know that if I do that, everything else will fall into place.

"But seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you." Matthew 6:33