Why We Call Our Blog the Miracle of More

The miracle is a beautiful image of Ephesians 3:20--more than I can ask or imagine. Every day is a miracle. Every moment is a miracle. Specifically for our family, the miracle of more is our family growing in ways I would never have imagined when we first committed to adoption 8 years ago. But, the greatest miracle is the change in ME!

If you have questions about adoption, our work in South Africa, or spina bifida, please email me at rbmattox@bellsouth.net

Monday, July 26, 2010

Memorial Box Monday--God's All Seeing Eye

So, I was thinking about this story as the possibility for my next Memorial Box post...and then I went to Linny's blog. Go there and see...do you think it was a sign?

And, I was thinking about my summer and possibly NOT posting a Memorial Box post...and then Josie-Tatum brought up the Memorial Box we have in our home yesterday in Sunday School. Do you think my children are getting the idea? God has been active in our lives before we were even born. Let us not forget.

So this story took place at one of my favorite places...you'll recognize it.

And, Josie-Tatum was just a couple of months younger than she is here:

I don't know why, but she and I were the only ones swimming that day. We had been in the pool for a while. One time she asked me if she could take off her "swimmies," and I said, "No."

At some point during our swim, my daddy came home from work. (The pool we love belongs to Grandma and Grandpa, you know.) I swam to the deep end of the pool so I could say hello to my daddy.

We were talking, and I don't know how long. He was on the opposite side of the fence, and he couldn't really see the pool. But, then I had this feeling.

Moms know the feeling.

Something's not quite right.

Why is it so quiet?

I turned around to see only the top of Josie-Tatum's head.

I didn't have any idea how long she had been in the water. She had taken off her swimmies. She must have been on the ladder and just slipped in the pool, because there had not been a sound, not a splash.

I screamed! I screamed, "Daddy!" I don't know what else I might have screamed. I just know I continued to scream.

I was trying to walk/run around the edge of the pool, where there is a ledge...even in the deep end.

It finally occurred to me that I could swim in the water much faster than I could walk.

I swam as fast as I could to Josie-Tatum and picked her up. I took her up the ladder quickly and sat on the pool deck. She still wasn't making a sound.

I squeezed her belly, and water came out of her mouth.

Then, she began to cry.

At that point, I lost it. I began to cry. I was shaking, and I don't know of any time in my life when I have shaken any more than I did that day.

Daddy had made it through the gate and up the pool deck. It seemed like minutes, but I suppose it was only seconds, and I made it to Josie-Tatum much faster than I realized.

As Josie-Tatum was crying, Daddy said, "You're okay. I think it's your mama who we need to worry about now."

That night, as we were going to sleep, Josie-Tatum said, "I kept looking for my mama." Can you feel my heart?

And, today, I can still get upset when I think about it. But....I can think about it now and thank my Jesus. I don't know how long Josie-Tatum had been under the water, but I do believe it was the LORD who told me to turn around. I thank Him for that still small voice, that sixth sense He has given mothers. I thank Him for all of the times His all-seeing eye has kept a watch on my children. He is our Protecter.

I'm not sure what I will put in the Memorial Box to remember....but I want my children to remember that God watches over them. (Any thoughts on what to put in there?)

And, don't forget, go see what Linny's Memorial Box post was this week.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Our Summer Happenings

So, we've been swimming, to the beach, swimming, to Wild Adventures, swimming, to the beach, swimming, to Wild Adventures, and swimming. I only have one more week of such leisure before I go back to work, YUK! And, I've already been to the new school the past two days, unpacking boxes and boxes...and boxes....

We're headed to the beach again in a few hours...but here's a few photos of our summer fun.

Swimming with the Tolberts at Grandma and Grandpa's house...Eli, Kati, and Levi (from the Philipines.)

Grandpa...the best Daddy ever...joined in the swim.

And, swimming with the Stretches at Grandma's house.

We've had a friend from KY here this past week. She goes home tomorrow. :(
But, I'll spend a little more time on the computer and share some more of our summer fun.

Off to the beach................

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


So you can all hold me accountable.....

I promise to post some fun summer photos by tomorrow....

This week....
we went to the beach on Monday....
swimmin' with the Stretches on Tuesday...
headed to Wild Adventures this morning.....

I love summer!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Memorial Box Monday--The Faith of a Child

Many of you know and will remember that Josie-Tatum and I went to South Africa last summer on an awesome mission adventure. You can read a portion of how the LORD called us to the mission here. If you are further intrigued, you can read one of the LORD's many miraculous provisions for us here.

We've been praying and seeking God's guidance about returning to South Africa next summer. Please join us in prayer. But, as we've been praying and talking, I have been reminded of the many miracles I watched God perform during our journey last year.

This story describes how God can use the faith and obedience of a child.

After we had committed to going to Africa, we knew we needed money...and lots of it...$6,000 to be exact. As we saw God providing I told Josie-Tatum that I felt God has spoken to me. In the story of the fishes and the loaves, when God used the child's gift, do you remember that there were left-overs? Twelve baskets of left-overs? So, I told Josie-Tatum we were going to pray for more than $6,000, and we would use the extra money to help the orphans.

God always does more than we ask or imagine when we step out in faith.

God sent, through many friends and family, over $8,000.

We were able to sponsor two children for a year, and we, along with our church family, continue to care for these two precious children. We were also able to give money for clothes and other needs for children in a home for orphans. We took school supplies with us and toys.

The one thing, though, that Josie-Tatum wanted to take and asked if she could take was Bibles. One day, she and I went to Wal-Mart and purchased every children's Bible and Bible story book on the shelves.

When we arrived in South Africa, we were blessed to help children with their school work in the school on the mission base.

We joined the missionaries in feeding orphans.

We painted an orphange, distributed clothes to the needy, and distributed food to widows. While we were there, our hearts were touched when we met three orphans whose lives were to be forever changes through the work God had allowed us to join.

These three children, Faith, Solomon, and Shandukani were to be moving onto the mission base and living in a home with Auntie Andrea. Her love for them was evident as she prepared their school lunches and talked of them. The staff on the mission base was busy prepraing a place for the children to sleep.

Josie-Tatum remembered her Bible story books and wanted to give one to Auntie Andrea. We couldn't find her, but saw Mrs. Hazel. We told Mrs. Hazel that Josie-Tatum had a Bible story book she wanted to give Auntie Andrea, so she could read stories to Faith, Solomon, and Shandukani.

And, you know what she said.

"Auntie Andrea told me last week that she wished she had a children's Bible to share with the children when they move here."

I felt Holy Ghost chills over my body.

How's that for our Awesome, Awe-Inspiring, Jehovah-Jireh?

He will provide.

He will provide for you.

And, he may just do it through a child.

So, tonight as I shared with Josie-Tatum this story I wanted us to never forget, and how I wanted to include it in our Memorial Box, I asked, "What should we put in our Memorial Box to help us remember?"

And, Stan said, "I have an idea."

He went to the closet and pulled out a small New Testament, the first one he had ever been given.

And, now its home is in our Memorial Box, so we can remember how God provided His word for three precious orphans in South Africa.

If you'd like to know more about Memorial Box Monday, check out Linny's blog:

And, I konw I've not posted much this summer. My plans, though, include lots of photos and updates this week..

And, possibly some exciting news before the end of the week!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

New Family Pets

So, Ellie has developed a new fascination with rocks. No matter where we were on our trip to CT, she would stop to pick up rocks. Ready to step out on a dock on a beautiful river....stop to pick up a rock. See the ocean just yards away, pick up a piece of gravel in the parking lot.

So, these new friends are now part of the Mattox family.

This first rock was found off the coast of Connecticut in the edge of the Long Island Sound. We were at Harvey's Beach in the town of Old Saybrook. We found the water there much like Jekyll Island. It was low tide and muddy, and there were sand gnats. But, the seeing the Long Island sound and picturing God's handiwork was awesome.

His name is Rocky.

Back at the hotel, Daddy felt compelled to join in the game and give Rocky a face.

Ellie chose another rock on the shores of Rhode Island. We were driving back from a restaurant when I saw a sign for a beach. Quite the little detour later, we found a beach town, looked for a while to find a place to park, and headed out all clothed to check out the beach. I like the idea of seeing different beaches. Some sights look familiar, while others are different. And, while we were stepping into the Atlantic waters, like we do when we are home, that water was COLD!!

So, Daddy helped Ellie choose the perfect rock, and I suggested the name Rhoda for Rhode Island and she liked that idea.

On the way to the van, however, Ellie shared that she was afraid Rocky might be jealous because the new rock was prettier than Rocky. And, for the 30-45 minute ride back to the hotel, Ellie was entertained by her two new pets. (Have you considered how much imagination that takes.)

Well, we're driving along, when Ellie says, "Everybody, don't talk to Rocky. When we get to the hotel, I am putting him in the corner in time out because he's making fun of the other one."

Josie-Tatum asked, "Is it because the other one is fatter?"

Ellie said, "No, it's because the other one doesn't have a face."

Yeah, Josie-Tatum and I laughed.

We laughed pretty hard.....

until Stan said in that Daddy takes control voice, "Well, I can tell you one thing. When we get back to the hotel, I can fix that. I can give the other one a face."

You see his handiwork.

Our last full day in Rhode Island found us taking a steam train along the Connecticut River, and a ferry to cross it. After a hike, Ellie and I wet our feet in the water. (I love water.)

And, Ellie chose yet another rock to be her new pet. (Ellie loves rocks.)

I don't know why she chose the name Rosabelle, but that is her name.

Caleb was at work while we were taking this little adventure. When were back on the ferry to cross the river again, the family stood at the rail to take in the beautiful sights to see on the CT River.

Not Ellie.

When we asked her to come look at the river with us, she sat on the deck under a shelter and said, "I think I'll stay here and play with my new rock."

And tonight, I'm upstairs updating the blog when Stan shouts from below, "I'm not worried about Whitney talking to herself anymore, Mama."

"Why is that?" I ask.

And, he says, "Because Ellie is kissing rocks."

Oh, to be a child again.

To enjoy the little things in life.
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