Like a shepherd he feeds his flock; in his arms he gathers the lambs, carrying them in his bosom, leading the ewes with care. (Isaiah 40:11)
The Raver girls hail from Bateville, Indiana. If you’re following along with my “Mad for” series, you’ve already met one of them, Renee (Raver) Schwegman. Today, I want to tell you a little about the other amazing Raver sister, Kathy (Raver) Cruz. Kathy is the husband to Charlie and mother of sweet Lilah and Max. Sorry, Renee, but it appears to me that Kathy is definitely the “responsible sister”. Kathy is all about safety first, whether it be proper floatation devices for the kids while they take walks on the pier in Michigan (see above photo) or when shopping for the healthiest foods available for the family. I could certainly learn some things from her there! She’s a woman who reliably does the right thing.
Kathy is gracious, kind and sunny. She’s done phenomenal charity work over the year’s for “Joy’s House”. She likes to laugh and she’s gracious and easy to be around. Also, Kathy has had a rough start to 2019. She had emergency surgery to remove her appendix…and things did NOT go smoothly. She was home from the hospital, then she was back again. Life is hard sometimes, isn’t it? Despite all we do to live up to our responsibilities and obligations in daily life, the Lord occasionally tosses us a curveball.
Here’s the thing about Kathy that I noticed during this time. Despite her physical pain and incredible frustration, she just kept doing her level best. She allowed others to help with her beautiful kiddos and she must have seen that she had no choice but to admit she couldn’t manage by herself. She seemed filled with grace even responding to my nosy but genuinely concerned texts. Family and friends stepped in with food and logistics help. Her work family, I presume, did the same. I know she’s been a valued employee for many years.
Hopefully, what Kathy noticed during this time was that the Lord is right beside us, loving us throughout the journey. When we feel crummy, when we speak angry words in frustration, when we are in the middle of a series of bad days– we are usually right in the middle of a God-filled time. Sometimes when it’s me in the center of the hurricane, I don’t notice it until later. However, that’s what I saw when I watched Kathy climb back the hill to health. I saw what a blessed woman she is, and I noticed how many people love her. She’s a very lovable person who does so much for others, therefore it was reassuring and gratifying to see the compassion returned to her. I think God loves when we lean in and let Him carry us. We are his beloved children, after all!
Kathy, I hope Charlie and the kids, your mom, dad, Renee, Jeff, Laine and Ty all have been spoiling you this weekend as you celebrate your birthday. You are an amazing, character-filled woman and you deserve all the laughs and smiles you can gather to celebrate YOU! I know my life is better for having met you and I hope the rest of 2019 will be all smiles and sunshine! HAPPY BIRTHDAY, KATHY!