The Macs » Blog

oh my…

This week I have been asked to go WAY out of my comfort zone.
Last week we had been contacted by the Newton Kansan (our local paper).  They wanted to do a story about Cora’s Playground and wanted to interview us.  If you know me you will understand that this is totally outside my box.  I am a pretty private person and would rather go unnoticed than be in the spotlight. I know you are laughing…there is no going back now!
We agreed to do the interview and met with the reporter on Monday.  She was very kind, but the interview was really hard for both Joel and me.  Harder than we thought.  She wanted to know all about Cora and I started crying the first time I opened my mouth.  But, we made it through.  We felt like it was an opportunity to share what God is doing in our lives. That’s why we did it.
The article was published in today’s paper.  You can read it here.  I don’t like having my picture on the front page of the paper AT ALL.  But, it was awesome to read about Jesus in our local paper.
Today when I got home (I had just read the article), my phone started ringing.  I looked at our caller idea and it was Channel 12 News out of Wichita.  I thought there was no way that it could be a reporter.  But I was scared that it was and didn’t answer the phone.  As I listened to the message I couldn’t believe that someone would want to do a story about our little Cora.  They did! They wanted to interview us today and air the story on tonight’s news.
I just cried because I didn’t know what to do.  I just waited and thought.  Twenty minutes later she called again. I knew I needed to answer the phone.  She wanted to come to our house in two hours to talk to us.  I told her I needed to talk to Joel and I would call her back.
I am not a good decision maker.  I don’t like talking publicly, especially in front of a camera. Not to mention I didn’t think I could get through an interview without crying again.  But, I knew this was another opportunity to share the love of Jesus…with LOTS of people.
I called Joel.  I prayed that if we were supposed to do the interview that Joel would say we needed to do it.  Of course he was hesitant, but he thought we needed to say yes. After all, it is not about us. We are here to glorify God. This might be our opportunity to do just that. We prayed that He would give us the words to say.
So here we are…

A few hours after that phone call from the reporter, she was in our living room and we were telling her all about the Cora’s Playground project.

This is for all the locals.  Our story will be on the 9 o’clock news (on Fox) and the 10 o’clock (Channel 12) news after the basketball games.
Oh my!
We are praying that God would be glorified through this story!
sharepinTweet
  • jen christians - I am so proud of the two of you. God on the news and Jesus in the paper. Amen! Too bad it was at such a huge cost to you. please know that I still pray daily for you and ask others to do so as well. To God be the glory.ReplyCancel

  • Alisha - “We are here to glorify” God….that just amazes me. You don’t know me but I am so sorry about your baby girl. I have an 11 month old daughter and I can’t even begin to imagine your pain. You are really inspirational. Take Care!ReplyCancel

  • Logan and Rebecca - Jesus Christ is so proud of you both, and I am too even though I don’t know you. I’ve been following your blog since you found out Cora was sick. I pray for you all often. I am so glad you are finding some comfort in our Savior’s arms.ReplyCancel

  • michelle - Wow…your love for God is undeniable. You are such an awesome couple!!! I honestly wished I lived closer so we could hang out. 🙂 Thank you again for sharing your family w/ us…I continue to pray for your healing.ReplyCancel

  • Kathryn - I don’t think i’ve posted before, maybe i have. But largely i never feel i have words for you. What can you say when someone has lost so much? I ache for your empty arms & pray for you. I cried when Cora died, & worried about your faith.

    But you are so strong (tho i know you don’t feel that way) & hanging on so tightly to Jesus. I know he will reward you. Your testimony is so true & will touch so many people’s hearts.

    God bless you.ReplyCancel

  • shepherdsgrace - oh sweet sister, may your testimoney be used by our sweet Lord to touch many hearts and may they be led to salvation in Him…

    blessings on your faithfulness through the pain…

    and praise to Him, our Rock…our Comforter…closer than any brother…

    thank you,
    SarahReplyCancel

  • The Moffats - Wow – when I called today and said I wondered how the interview went I certainly didn’t expect this! You guys are being so faithful to the Lord and impacting hundreds of lives. Precious Cora will live in the hearts of so many and people will be changed forever because of her and because of your testimony. Hang in there. Love you bunches and bunches.ReplyCancel

  • Amanda - Jess this is awesome! I’ll definitely be watching from Riverside.ReplyCancel

  • Cathy - Bless you…how are the contributions to Cora’s Playground coming along? That was such a wonderful idea in her honor and I so admire your faith…I can only pray that someday I’ll know what it is to experience that much faith unconditionally.ReplyCancel

  • Heather - So wonderful!!ReplyCancel

  • kati - you are such a special family. my heart breaks for you, but i am so inspired. keep on keepin’ on. i wish a future of all good things for you.

    i love the wall of photos of your beautiful cora along the wall behind you…ReplyCancel

  • Polka Dot Moon - You are an inspiration to all!

    Not a day goes by without my thinking of you both and praying for you daily.ReplyCancel

  • mommieof2 - That is such an awesome way to share Cora’s story and inspire other families. It is very hard for me as well to come out of my comfort zone, but there is a reason they called for these interviews. Good for you!ReplyCancel

  • blessedmomto7 - We were in a similar situation with adopting all our drug exposed kids-but you are right! Anything to get GOD’S WORD and WORK out there 🙂 How AWESOME that Cora & her story will be known by so many more. You guys are SUCH A GREAT witness for the kingdom-God knows what he’s doing! Hopefully it will be on line 🙂 We don’t get Wichita only Topeka and KC-wish we could see it 🙂
    Through the blessing of my children God has made a once TERRIFIED public speaker (me) into a national public speaker to help STOP illegal drug use during pregnancy. God does some AMAZING things & I have a feeling he is just getting started with you 🙂 Hugs!ReplyCancel

  • Samantha - I am so SO SO happy to hear that Cora’s story will be shared even further. She has touched so many lives and hearts. You all have. I commend you for putting God first and going out of your comfort zone, I know that must be hard. I am a pretty private person myself so I can understand your hesitance. I hope you can post a clip of the interview!ReplyCancel

  • Team Alix - I’m glad you did it – and to glorify God! Remember public speaking didn’t come easily to Moses, either. He trusted in God and let God speak through him!ReplyCancel

  • Trish - your family continues to amaze me and i can see that your faith is so real and not just an act! sending you hugs and so glad you decided to step out of your comfort zone. the story was beautiful 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Scarlet O'Kara - It is wonderful that Cora is helping you witness to so many people…ReplyCancel

  • Anna - How wonderful that Cora’s legacy continues to live on! I know this must have been so hard to do, but I pray that by your going public, that someone will be touched – and even may come to know God because of her story! My He get glory through your tragedy. Thanks for sharing with us!ReplyCancel

  • Miranda @ Traveling Treasures - That is amazing! The fact that you are putting God into the newspapers and on TV! Cora had so much more to do. And you are being the best parents and sharing Christ through her with as many people as you can. AWESOME!
    It’s ok to cry on public TV and during interviews. You are human and have an undescribable amount of pain. You are both so strong, physically and spiritually.
    Keep telling about sweet, precious Cora.
    Hugs to you!ReplyCancel

  • Julia - woohoo!ReplyCancel

  • Margaret - God is using you to do such great things. I am sure that lives will be changed because of your little Cora. You two are so strong.ReplyCancel

  • Midwest Mommy - Wonderful article. I wished I lived near you to see the news tonight.ReplyCancel

  • Micah - What an amazing and heartwarming story. Thank you for being so open and willing to spread your Hope and Glorify God through this trial.

    “Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior. The Sovereign Lord is my strength; He makes my feet like the feet of a deer, He enables me to go on the heights.”
    Habakkuk 3:17-19ReplyCancel

  • Tricia boutellefamilyzoo@yahoo.com - Jess and Joel,
    As always, my prayers continue to be with you.
    I have had some of your words in my head all week, and I thought I would reiterate those words to you.

    On October 2, 2008 you said:
    “Julie is a WONDERFUL mother and is being so loving and patient through all the ups and downs. She is so faithful to trust God and has such a positive attitude even as she spends those long hours in the hospital. I only hope that I could handle a situation like this with such grace.”

    Jess you have handled your painful struggle with amazing grace. Your openness, strength, and intense faith in God are touching more and more people every day.

    May God continue to bless you.
    Thank you,
    TriciaReplyCancel

  • The Russell Family - WOW – you and Joel are amazing… Through it all you have remained steadfast honoring GOD… I’m really at a loss for words but feel led to encourage you! What a wonderful legacy Cora is leaving 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Kristi REDISKE - I am so proud of you two-no doubt you Love your Lord-thanks for being such a witness for Him. Iknow what you mean about being in the background and not being noticed-thats how I am. I love to do things behind the scenes-I know this must have been hard. I wish I lived in Newton so I could see it on the news. I have called my mom who lives there and she is going to watch. I have been telling her about you all non stop-she doesn’t have a computer. You have really been helping me want to draw closer to the Lord and to realize more how precious our time is with family. I am praying that you can raise the rest of the money you need. I can’t wait to see the playground. Wow-this is long-I thankyou for posting-and following our Loving God.ReplyCancel

  • hoosier68 - It’s okay to cry. We all are crying with you. What a testimony to your love of Cora and Jesus Christ. Praying for you each day.ReplyCancel

  • Anonymous - You and Joel are AMAZING!
    I too love the wall showing beautiful Cora!
    Sad that I won’t be able to watch the news, but greatful that I could read the article…So proud for you that roughly 31,000 has been raised for Cora’s Playground, I so hope to get to the needed 45,000.

    Kim(alabama)ReplyCancel

  • Ethansmom08 - WOW! Amazing, I think it is fabulous what you are doing to glorify God and tell the story of your beautiful Cora’s life! And, congrats to you and Joel for stepping out of your own comfort zone to spread the word!

    I really enjoyed the article and SO wish that I was local so that I could see you both on TV! I have been wearing my Cora flower in my hair everyday and when someone comments on it, I feel priveledged to tell them about Cora. Your family and faith have had such a profound impact on my life.

    I can’t wait to buy more things too!

    Praying for you all everyday…
    Love,
    Sara (VA)ReplyCancel

  • Anonymous - Oh Jess. Thanks for being obedient to God’s call and sharing your story with the news and newspaper. I’m sure it was more difficult than any of us can imagine, but God is going to use it to glorify HIS name. Praying for you and Joel tonight. –Emily (a fellow K-Stater & Challenge alum)ReplyCancel

  • Amber - I am so proud of you guys for being so brave. That sounds a little strange to say that b/c I don’t even know you. But being a Christian, I feel a fellowship with you. And I can only imagine the pain that comes along with doing this. You could have just said no, or didn’t even answer, but you did. And that takes courage and strenth. God is using you both, and CORA in a mighty, mighty way. Her legacy & spirit will live on forever.ReplyCancel

  • Marlene W. - There’s not a doubt in my mind this will have a profound impact on many people who haven’t yet heard of Cora and who need to hear of the steadfastness of God’s love . . . bless you two for being so brave and available! As always, praying for you. Though I have yet to meet her, Cora will always have a special place in my heart.ReplyCancel

  • The Meineckes - This comment has been removed by the author.ReplyCancel

  • HighlandGhillie - wow. very powerful. I’m glad you found the strength and courage to do it.ReplyCancel

  • The Meineckes - AMAZING!!! God is using you both in incredible ways through this. May SO MANY people hear His name for the FIRST TIME tonight!!!!

    Continued thoughts and prayers,
    Shannon
    Ft. Worth, TXReplyCancel

  • Marla Taviano - Crying. God is so good. I know that none of this can ease the pain of missing Cora, but praise God for your faithfulness in sharing the gospel of Christ through your grief.

    Bless you, bless you, bless you!!ReplyCancel

  • ~Kelli - God will be glorified through this story!! Great article. My continued prayers for you.ReplyCancel

  • Heather @ boy, girl, and a pug - Just watched…and cried. Thank you both for sharing your journey with us. I think about Cora and pray for your peace daily.ReplyCancel

  • gatheringpeeps - You both did a great job! It just aired on FOX news…
    to GOD be the glory!

    TamiReplyCancel

  • ang - Cora was amazing. Your faith is incredible and you are such an inspiration. You are in our daily thoughts and prayers. My 8-year old daughter tells people about Cora when they ask about the messy flower pin. Her picture sets in our living room as a reminder to pray for you and Joel.ReplyCancel

  • PamperingBeki - Oh Jess!!!

    I’m in tears for you!
    I can only imagine how scary and emotional that was.

    I have the dvr set to record you. 🙂

    Love you guys!!ReplyCancel

  • Anonymous - I am so glad to hear that Cora’s story will be shared even further. She has touched so many lives and hearts.
    You are an amazing family. Especially going out of your comfort zone to spread the word of faith and hope.
    I look forward to seeing the clip.

    I pray for your family often. I am so glad you are finding comfort in Jesus arms.

    Lia from AustraliaReplyCancel

  • McKenzie - I also just watched on FOX in Winfield, KS. You were so beautiful and so brave! God’s grace is amazing and it is the most powerful that I have ever seen it as I do through your eyes. Your faith is amazing, a rock and example for all who are weary! Cora is an angel in the army of Jesus and she is the most perfect addition!
    Great job Jess and Joel!ReplyCancel

  • Megan - Wow. I am really amazed by your strength. God will be glorified by this!ReplyCancel

  • Heather's Home (aka Chez Hez) - I can’t watch over here in Iowa, but I’m hoping someone will post something sooner or later on here.

    You both are a blessing, a light, and a joy, Jess.

    <3

    Bless you all!

    ~ HeatherReplyCancel

  • The Sweigart Family - You guys did a great job. God is definitely being glorified by you too.

    Also wanted to let you know…Maddox includes in his prayers everyday, “and please bless Cora’s parents.” I still get teary eyed every time.

    Love you guys and praying for you everyday.ReplyCancel

  • The Boccias - Nathan and I watched together, both of us crying. That must have been so hard to do but thank you for doing it. We could see Jesus in you and that is beautiful. Praying for you every day.ReplyCancel

  • The Gayden's - I watched from Wellington. I cried and cried for you and your loss but I also cried happy tears because so many people have just heard of God and were directed here, I trust that God will lead those that come here to him. You both did so wonderful…thank you for your courage, your faith and sharing Cora with us all. You are in my prayers daily…

    KristinReplyCancel

  • The Boccias - Forgot to say–loved that you were in green. 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Lacie and Stephen - I too was asked to give an interview just 3 weeks after the death of my daughter. We did it because we knew that it would help others in our situation as well as spreading the word of Jesus Christ. We are praying for you and feel your pain with you. Keep on keeping on! What a wonderful faith you have!ReplyCancel

  • Kimberly - Wow, I’m so proud of you!ReplyCancel

  • Gina Dreher - Just watched the news segment – you did such an awesome job of keeping Jesus as the focus! I don’t know if anyone could’ve watched it and not be touched. God is doing amazing things!!ReplyCancel

  • Jeremy, Jennalee and Julia Ekeland - You guys did an awesome job! God sure knows what He’s doing! 🙂ReplyCancel

  • angie c - I just saw the Fox news, you did great! It brought tears to my eyes. My hubby saw the preview and said “where was that family from with Baby Cora?”… and I said “newton” and he said “well they are going to be on the news.” You are special people and loved by sooo many!ReplyCancel

  • Anonymous - Great article. God is doing big things through your little girl. I am still so sorry that she is not in your arms, but through the things you are doing her legacy will live on. You are both in my thoughts and prayers.
    Blessings-
    Laura from FLReplyCancel

  • Wehoagies - I just read about Paul in Philippians 1 this morning. I want to encourage you with your hard choices. It is obvious that you are empty and God is filling you with HIS strength and abundant grace. May you feel His peace as He works through you in mighty ways!

    12Now I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel. 13As a result, it has become clear …that I am in chains for Christ. 14Because of my chains, most of the brothers in the Lord have been encouraged to speak the word of God more courageously and fearlessly.

    …20I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. 21For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.

    27Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ….29For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for him…ReplyCancel

  • ran shae - Go God!!!ReplyCancel

  • Leah - I loved that they aired your statement about Jesus 🙂 No sweeter name….ReplyCancel

  • Cristy - Wow You guys! My family just watched and you both did so wonderful. Jess, I was just in awe of how your sweet spirit came across-even on TV. I was just telling my friend the other day that I would not be surprised if this story made National Headlines.

    Bless you Jess and Joel. ((Hugs))

    Cristy HarderReplyCancel

  • Anonymous - For those who aren’t local, as I am not..I just watched the news here..
    http://www.kwch.com/global/story.asp?s=10039663

    Amazing, strong, brave souls!
    Heartbreaking…THANK YOU

    KimReplyCancel

  • Melody - That’s amazing!! And what an awesome thing that you can be so far out of your comfort zone, but say “this isn’t about me”. I am going to read the article right now, and I hope you can post a link to the interview if it goes up!ReplyCancel

  • Kelly @ The Beauty of Sufficient Grace - Wow! Beautiful…your willing hearts to bring glory to the Lord through sharing the story of your precious Cora…are so beautiful. Thank you for sharing this with us…and for bravely trusting the Lord as you shared with the local news today. Continuing to lift you up in prayer…standing in awe of our mighty God as He works in and through your life.ReplyCancel

  • Sarah Furlough - God bless you!ReplyCancel

  • Misty Rice-Baniewicz - Oh my that would be a bit scary…but WOW praise God in how he likes to keep us on our toes. What a busy day you had… but although you are spreading the word to so many people around the world…. I think God knew exactly what JESSICA “Jess” needed today also… distraction, a day to praise Cora and keep that light burning.

    I am so proud of you guys. I can’t read a post with out tears flowing down…. but I am so honored to witness this journey and get to know you guys even only through words and pictures.

    YOU are an amazing sista in christ… You both are such inspirations and I know you get told that a hundred times a day probably….

    PS: On lighter note, to bring a little smile to a girls face from a girl to a girl…GREEN is so your color, your hair looked fabulous and I LOVE seeing the smiles on both of your faces.

    Thanks for this fun post… I got all giddy and excited over this for you.

    HugsReplyCancel

  • Bambi - You remain in my prayers and I’ll be watching later tonight.ReplyCancel

  • Melody - Oh wow! (This is my 2nd comment, sorry! LOL) I just read the article. What an amazing piece!! I can’t believe they were so liberal with the name of Jesus and Scripture- what a blessing that is!! I am praying that that article reaches just who God means it for!ReplyCancel

  • forever folding laundry - Cora is continuing to touch lives! Praise Him. Still praying for you….ReplyCancel

  • meg duerksen - SO COOL!
    i was picking up the dog at diana’s today and picked up her paper for her off the her sidewalk…and your face was peeking up at me. i smiled and opened it up. i was so proud of you both. that’s a big deal.
    it was such a nice article.
    you are so humble sweetie.
    God is using you both in amazing ways.
    it’s awesome to see so clearly God’s work.ReplyCancel

  • Anonymous - Your faith is amazing and inspiring. I wish I knew you IRL, because you two are the type of people that I try to surround myself with. Those you are fortunate to call you friends and family are so incredibly blessed.

    You are a beautiful witness to our heavenly Father and to the beauty of Christ’s love, comfort, and strength.

    I find myself thinking of you throughout each day, and I pray for you each time that you come into my mind. May God bless you both beyond all comprehension. You are amazing!

    AmyReplyCancel

  • Anonymous - You cry all you need to no matter what you are doing. I do not know you, but have come to know something so much bigger because of you and your baby girl. I am a mommy of 3 and because of you I hug them a little tighter, kiss them a little sweeter, hug them a little longer and thank God for them awhole lot more. I know that Jesus Christ is so proud of you and I know that he will guide the rest of your days.

    Keep the faith and keep on keeping on. Step by Step!

    Many BlessingReplyCancel

  • Diane - Oh…AWESOME for you to be able to put GOD on the FRONT PAGE!! WAY TO GO! Please be strong..you are doing an amazing thing…I am praying for you and Joel. I am so sorry for you loss…the pain must be unbearable.
    You are making a huge difference in the world by giving birth to your amazing daughter. God is so powerful…
    Still praying for your comfort…
    Diane
    in so. californiaReplyCancel

  • Enos Family - How is it I can get goosebumps every single time I read your blog? You are amazing. Simply amazing…are you getting tired of hearing that? You deserve so much good, and I know that you will get it. You have been through so much but you will make it through and you will be even more amazing because of it…the world is learning from YOU.ReplyCancel

  • Anonymous - Thank you so much for your sharing your story. I have followed your blog since Cora went into the hospital. My faith has grown tremendously b/c of Cora and your journey. Thank you for being great role models. You are never far from my thoughts and even though we have never met I am your sister in Christ. God Bless you both!ReplyCancel

  • Stephanie Lane - Praise God! He is continuing to use you in the lives of so many. He and little Cora are cuddling as they beam with pride over your faithfulness and hope and perseverance. Thank you for being an inspiration to me. May God continue to pour out his peace and blessings upon you!!!
    In Him,
    StephanieReplyCancel

  • Michelle - I can’t imagine how hard that would be. It’s one thing to blog about something so painful and personal, but quite another to be on tv, which scary in itself. I bet your angel is proud, watching you spread your wings.ReplyCancel

  • The Wildings - My husband and I were talking tonight about why sad, bad, and horrible things happen to good people. After witnessing your example, we know why.

    Way to go guys! I know that is must have been so hard to do what you have done, but the good that has come from this is amazing. The avenues that have opened up for people to hear, and re-hear about Christ, truly is nothing short of a miracle!

    You have a Father in Heaven that is so proud of his son and daughter! And I know that Cora must be beaming with happiness because of the faith of her parents!

    Still in my thoughts and prayers.ReplyCancel

  • Whimsical Creations - WOW!! You guys did a great job. Cora is touching so many more lives. Very inspirational.ReplyCancel

  • Molly - That’s amazing! I’m so glad word is spreading about your precious little girl! Your story is helping other people, I’m sure.ReplyCancel

  • Marsha - You all are amazing! I know that God is so proud of you! Continuing to pray for you each and every day! Love and prayers.

    Marsha in VAReplyCancel

  • mallorykt - I am currently going to school for education at Ferris State University and a part of our community service is Relay for Life– In remembrance of your sweet Cora I donated $$ under her name and wanted to thank you for sharing on your blog the joy of her life!

    Stay strong – God will lead Cora in Heaven!ReplyCancel

  • Mandy Rose - Your story continues to give me strength. I have been following your blog since Cora was first diagnosed and I could not imagine your pain. However, you might be one of the strongest set of parents I know…and for that…you are amazing! I recently had a miscarriage and even though it is not even near what you felt by losing Cora, it was hard. I immediately remembered your story and the strength that you had and somehow knowing what you had been through gave me strength! Thank you for sharing your story and for glorifying Jesus!ReplyCancel

  • Judy - I just read the newspaper article! It was beautiful! You glorified God and honored Cora with your words! I also love the picture in this post. The pictures of Cora in the background are just beautiful! I know this isn’t a platform you would ever ask for. Just like Moses did NOT ask to go back to Egypt to speak before Pharaoh! In Exodus chapter 3 & 4 he questioned God and basically begged him not to send him, but the Lord said (Exodus 3:12) “I am with you.” So keep honoring the Lord with your testimony – HE is with you!ReplyCancel

  • sarahross - WOW! WOW! WOW! Did you once wonder about the possibility to impact the world from Newton, KS?!ReplyCancel