Joni's Posts July 2012

Have You Blessed Me or What?!

  • By: Joni Eareckson Tada
  • July 31, 2012
  • 71 Comments
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19-year-old Joni drawing with her mouthWhen my husband 'took over' my blog yesterday and wrote you about July 30 being the 45th anniversary of my diving accident, NEVER did I dream I would hear from so many friends – and from all over the world, no less! And I have been so BLESSED reading your comments. See this 19-year-old girl in this photo? Fresh out of rehab? She's come a long way since the late 60s, and God has been faithful through every month and mile. THANK YOU for celebrating the goodness and gracious provision of our wonderful Savior toward me these many years. And the best is yet to come. He's promised (just read Revelation 21 and 22)!

Personal from Ken...

joni and kenHi, this is Ken here. I asked Joni if I could take over her blog today, because there’s something I want to say about my wife. I am so proud of her. Monday July 30th will mark 45 years that she’s lived as a quadriplegic. I don’t know anyone who has handled it with such courage. God has blessed Joni with such incredible health (I feel funny saying that knowing she’s had cancer and deals with pain daily, but it’s true, she’s in great health). I know it would bless her if you would send a word of encouragement as she looks to the future (I know she likes to look at her blog). First Corinthians 1:8 says that “He will keep you strong to the end…” and I'm believing that Joni has many more years of service ahead of her. Also, be sure to read the note she wrote – thanks for cheering her on with your prayers and support for this ministry, for I know it means a lot to my wonderful wife. I sure do love her!

We Love Nick Rice

  • By: Joni Eareckson Tada
  • July 26, 2012
  • 1 Comment
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nick rick with his mom and the joni and friends radio teamMeet one of our summer interns, Nick Rice, who served in our radio department through June and July -- Nick has a real heart for radio, and he loved helping research ideas for upcoming programs (plus I interviewed him about how God has spoken to him through his cerebral palsy). On the last day of his internship, we traveled down to Ambassador Agency, the group that edits, produces and distributes the "Joni and Friends" radio program -- Nick got a first class tour! During lunch, we presented Nick with a special thank you plaque for his time with us. Why the John Deere tractor? Because his big dream second only to being a deejay, is to one day drive a real John Deere! Watch out world!

Meet Auntie Shizuko...

  • By: Joni Eareckson Tada
  • July 25, 2012
  • 10 Comments
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ken and his aunt shizukoMy husband has a tender heart for his family -- especially Auntie Shizuko who is in her 90's and just suffered a stroke. Yesterday Ken drove three hours north to Fresno to see Dad Tada's sister, talk about Tada growing-up memories, and share his testimony of how Jesus Christ changes lives. Auntie is Ken's last remaining relative on his father's side, so please ask God to pour out His mercy on her, strengthen her frail body, and illumine her heart and mind to the Gospel of our Savior. After his visit? Ken turned...

A Family Retreat Akwaaba!

  • By: Joni Eareckson Tada
  • July 24, 2012
  • 1 Comment
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Last week while Ken and I were up at our Family Retreat in Mission Springs, California, another group of special-needs families were enjoying the same experience halfway around the world. And for those of you who pray for and support our work? These Ghanaian families shout "Akwaaba!" That means a big heartfelt "hello" in the twee language. The gospel of Christ is going forth in the uttermost parts of the earth to those who need His message most! (And I am so excited that 17 of the STMs were themselves from Ghana – and they are committed to keeping in touch with these disabled kids and their moms and dads). By the way, thank you for praying me through "Radio Day" yesterday – as energized as I felt, I KNEW you were praying!

Prayer Needed: We're Recording Today!

  • By: Joni Eareckson Tada
  • July 23, 2012
  • 1 Comment
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joni and rainey in the radio studioEarly on Monday morning we will be heading into the studio to record a big batch of "Joni and Friends" radio programs, as well as 47 one minute features – it means I'll be asking God to supply extra energy (especially since we just came off of a busy week at Family Retreat)! Please ask God to give breath, strength, and a pain-free day. Most of all, ask the Lord to bless the hundreds of thousands of listeners who will be drawn to the Savior's side through these...

Meet Three Awesome STMs...

  • By: Joni Eareckson Tada
  • July 20, 2012
  • 9 Comments
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Andrew with his 3 STMsThis is the last day of the Mission Springs Family Retreat and it's been an extraordinary experience. Part of that is because 60% of the special needs kids attending have significant degrees of autism. For instance, meet "Prince Andrew and his Royal Court" - Andrew is non-verbal and non-stop when it comes to energy; he is, in fact, a "runner" so it takes three STMs to keep up with him. Everywhere I turned this week, there was Andrew going full-steam with Naomi, Mariellen and Derek keeping pace (giving mom and dad the chance to relax for the first time in ages)! About midweek, the STMs discovered Andrew LOVED pushing a wheelchair over the speed bump -- I snapped this photo somewhere after the 18th time crossing that bump. And the STMs were smiling all the way. My hat's off to these three awesome STMs!! And now? We're heading...

You are God's Masterpiece

  • By: Joni Eareckson Tada
  • July 19, 2012
  • 4 Comments
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The message at this week’s Family Retreat? Our disabilities are often God's “frame” around the portrait of Jesus Christ which He is painting into our lives as we trust and obey! Tonight at Mission Springs Family Retreat is the big “Masterpiece Event” – everyone is to dress up as a “work of art” and be a part of our Masterpiece Parade. And the song I’ll be singing to the special needs families? Take a minute and listen...

A Taste of Home...

  • By: Joni Eareckson Tada
  • July 18, 2012
  • 4 Comments
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joni and ken at family retreat holding a plate of crabcakesThere is so MUCH to post about this Family Retreat here in Mission Springs, I can hardly keep up. On Tuesday night, Mark Williams, Area Director for Joni and Friends in the Bay Area, provided fresh East Coast Chesapeake Bay Blue Crabs to the camp cook (in the apron) to surprise Ken and me with homemade crab cakes to celebrate our 30th wedding anniversary. We were blown away and they tasted pretty close to my Mom’s family recipe! That’s what Family Retreat is all about – surprising these families with something super special and personal at every event. Psalm 34:8 says, “Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.” Thank you for praying for these families – hearts are melting and couples are opening up in such a powerful way, thanks to Jesus!

It's Hoe-Down Time!

  • By: Joni Eareckson Tada
  • July 18, 2012
  • 2 Comments
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joni and ken at a hoe downSwing your partner because last night was the big square dance at Family Retreat - and I'm proud to say that I didn't run over anyone's toes in my square! I can't begin to tell you how much these new families are enjoying this first-time Family Retreat... One single mom with her disabled son told me, "It's like we've come home!" And they have. Home into the heart of Jesus. Souls are softening, so keep praying!

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