the day after

Thanks for my birthday, friends. You really, really made it special. THANK YOU. If you missed it (which is totally fine, because I’m always missing birthdays–even when I love people!!), here are the 37 Things I Want for my 37th Birthday.

And I already got some of them! Sweet!! And some are in progress. Woot! One lone wonderful gal donated an Expecting book to Grace House (a new pregnancy center that friends of friends are starting in Estonia in January). I would loooooove to be able to send them with a whole big box, so if that’s something you’re able to do (or even want to give $2-$3 toward), let me know!

Today, on this first day of November (how is this possible??), the day after my b-day, the day after Cherry came to live with us, the day after a really rough night (lots of anxious thoughts, sleeplessness, then a nightmare), I’m feeling a little bit overwhelmed, a little bit raw, a little bit humbled, and a whole lot loved.


And this 38-second video? Warmed my heart to bubbling and almost bursting this morning. I LOVE THESE PEOPLE.

Now, if I could just get everyone in America to call me Ma-LA, my life would be complete. (p.s. These are my awesome friends, Veasna, Panha, and Yvonne, all of whom are going on the mission trip to India in December. SPONSOR THEM??? Then my life would really, really be complete.)

Last thing. My friend, Sarah, is featuring 30 different women’s stories on her blog this week. They all have a common theme: God. His love, his redemption, his comfort in suffering, his plan (even when we can’t see it). I’m up today, sharing honestly about some tough stuff we’ve been through (and are still going through) this year.

Happy November, friends!!

3 thoughts on “the day after

  1. traci

    Wow marla…you’re authenticity gets my throat tight and my eyes watering. And when one of my girls is close enough to me, I read it out loud…and my voice gets so passionately shaky they think I’m losing it. Then they hear…they hear your words and they say wow, too.

    It’s Jesus. He speaks to my heart through your stories and says, “Yep, I really do love THAT MUCH.”

    I really am not being dramatic when I say that I fall a bit more in love with Him after reading about how He has bent down…gently held your face…looked into your eyes…and said “I”m here.”

    This past year has been a life changer for my family too. My husband lost his job and it’s thrown us into a tailspin. But, yes, with you I can say He is here. So close…so close.

    Thanks Marla~ you’re honest bravery is breathtakingly beautiful. Happy Belated Birthday friend. 🙂

  2. Teresa Henry

    I loved reading your story! I have followed your story through your blog, but I loved how you share that God is always with you. I also love your honesty in sharing how things are still hard…and just because God is there…and good things happen, life is hard…but amongst the times that are difficult we can still count on our God. He is still our strength and our life line. God never leaves us..and that is His promise.

    I am sharing on the 7th…and it’s all your fault..haha…well it’s actually all God’s fault but it wouldn’t have happened if I didn’t read your blog! I keep wanting to revise what I already sent her and add more here and there…but I am going to try to stop negative talking to myself and allow God to do the talking through it.

    Have fun with your exchange student!

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