The Power of SUPPORT

What we learned over the past 8 months while fighting “our battle” were two certainties:

First, there is peace and comfort when you HUMBLE YOURSELF, place it all at His feet and put your faith in the Lord.

Second, there is a tangible power that comes from support from friends, family and loved ones. I want to focus on the latter with this post – and share our experiences as recipients of that power and our goal to expand our “network of power” in our new journey!

chemo bell

Learn from my past mistakes….

Take time out of your “busy routine” to put a smile on the faces of those you love. (Put smiles on the faces of strangers for that matter. The world needs more people who can make others smile.) Instead of rushing off to work or worrying about your meetings/goals for the week ahead, take time to spend time with your spouse or your kids, and don’t just be “in their presence” be with them. Psssssssss…..put down the smartphone and wrestle, tickle, play, laugh.

Thank God for the privilege of having a family and friends that care for you. Say “I’m sorry” more often and quicker. Make up with your family and/or friends if you’ve had an argument or falling out…..life is too short to waste or wait. Life is also beautiful. Take action today to make the most of it.  “No man on his deathbed ever wished he had spent more time at the office.” – Stephen Covey

tulsa dinner lale family at Reynolds'

Remember the POWER OF SUPPORT and relationships.

family

Let me start by saying, there are literally too many people who came to our side when Tara started her battle with cancer to even begin to list, let alone thank.

THANK YOU ALL for the dinners, cards, flowers, help with our moves, hospital visits, help at my work, fun outings (distractions) for our kids, homes to stay, but Tara’s favorite of all were the prayers!

flowers tara tiaras

So many came to pray over us in our home, in small groups, at Tara’s side during those long chemo treatments, in front of churches and mostly from a distance. We’ve learned about huge groups of strangers praying for her healing and it’s amazing to see the love spread so quickly and endlessly through social media today.

celebrate spa moes  tara strongest woman Amber Jenkins

My hope is, many of YOU get the chance to read this blog and see the answers to your prayers lived out!

We’ve had the chance this first week of travel to hug and break bread with many of those loved ones already.

Our “new life” began with a trip to Arkansas to float the Buffalo River and stay at a cabin with my family. I have 3 younger brothers who are pretty much my 3 best friends, so there are 4 of us boys and we are separated by 5 years in age. My parents, Tom and Debi are two of the coolest and most loving parents you could find.

L-R (brothers: Jonathan, Joe, Tully, Dane, Dad: Tom, Son: Logan in front)
L-R (Jonathan, Joe, Tully, Dane, Dad: Tom, Logan-front)

They’ve all been personally impacted by Tara (the healthy one) and her surprise and terrifying cancer diagnosis. Although, none of them are surprised by her tenacity and positivity while battling and defeating it! (Sidenote: Tara continues to pray that the peace she experienced through Christ and the family prayers throughout will have a “ripple effect” on all of their future.) It was deeply therapeutic to all get together and smile in God’s natural beauty to enjoy and celebrate our health and happiness.

L-R (Back: Jenny with Dane, Jonathan, Tom, Joe, Logan, Tara, Tully, Front: Debi, Ellie)
L-R (Back: Jenny with Dane, Jonathan, Tom, Joe, Logan, Tara, Tully, Front: Debi, Ellie)

Next, our journey took us from Rogersville, MO (aka: HQ) to Kansas City, KS to see one of Tara’s lifelong friends, Ashley Hamrick and her family.

farmstead kiddos farmstead swing

We spent time at a farmstead, a swimming pool and also got to see my Grandpa for dinner.

IMG_2091

We then stopped at Indianola, Iowa where our minds were blown and eyes opened about the power of God’s Plan. Tara decided to just blindly Google search for a ministry we could offer service to since we had a free day in Iowa, and she found Jesus’ Right Hand Ministry in New Virginia, IA. There we were greeted by a loving group of new friends who told us they had literally just been praying for strangers to come offer help because they needed some man-power to start their move as their ministry is growing and expanding to a new building. Wow! Wouldn’t you know, we’ve got the “moving thing” down by now!

Tara and Joyce Mastin take a break from moving shelves to say
Tara and Joyce Mastin take a break from moving shelves to say “cheese”.
Elaine Kephart and her 2 sisters, Martha and MaryJane in front of Jesus' Right Hand Ministry
Elaine Kephart and her 2 sisters, Martha and MaryJane in front of Jesus’ Right Hand Ministry

Even Ellie and Logan were able to offer some help, but more importantly be with us in prayer and service with our new brothers and sisters in Christ.

ellie work at jrh jesus right hand work tully logan work jrh

We spent the weekend with Mark and Jodi Young who are technically friends, but we call them “family”! Tara’s parents flew up to enjoy more smiles together after so much stress and strain this past year. We all enjoyed a slice of “Americana” at a Fish Fry where we also enjoyed some homemade ice-cream, catching fireflies and a sparkler show by the kids!

L-R: Tara, Jodi Young, Mickey Reynolds (Tara's Mom)
L-R: Tara, Jodi Young, Mickey Reynolds (Tara’s Mom)

sparklers

We were also blessed to add another group of former strangers, who had been praying for Tara’s healing the whole time, to our new group of friends! We had the hands of Mark and Jodi’s prayer group placed on us as they all prayed for God’s continued healing in Tara’s body and to bless our journey this year.

prayer group

On Sunday Tara was invited to speak in front of the congregation at First Assembly of God Church in Indianola. She got to publicly share her testimony in front of an audience for the first time (but I doubt it will be the last.)

Tara's about to speak in front of First Assembly of God Church
Tara’s about to speak in front of First Assembly of God Church
Tully and Tara with pastor Barry Hill.
Tully and Tara with pastor Barry Hill.

We saw a college baseball World Series game in Omaha, Nebraska and are now sitting in Badlands National Park in South Dakota. As we visit sites on this “vacation leg” of our journey, I’m reminded that no matter how beautiful the setting or activity, it’s only truly perfect if you have loved ones to share them with.

Badlands, South Dakota
Badlands, South Dakota
Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Sioux Falls, South Dakota

Enjoy the beauty and power of a supporting relationship and know that we appreciate your continued love and support in our comments here as we update our journey…

God bless!

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4 thoughts on “The Power of SUPPORT

  1. Tully and Tara,

    I do not even have the words to tell you how courageous and motivating that you are! God has truly blessed the both of you with being together with your wonderful family! You both are a true inspiration and I wish you all the peace and safe travels along your journey! I will keep praying for you all!

    Liz B.

    Like

  2. Can I say as one of your friends it was a blessing to me to walk
    This road with you. So often I felt helpless and it was hard to do nothing but watch and pray. But being able to do that and watch what God did changed my prayer life again!! I love you both so much (and the kiddos). 🙂 give each other a hug for me!!

    Like

  3. May God continue to blessed you with traveling grace and arriving mercies. Tully you are so accurate about goals for the week, work and if you remember our mantra ” be here now” which none of us were able to accomplish.

    You are going to continue to change lives through your connections. Thank you for sharing.

    Like

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