the Steidingers
Steidinger family

this cross we’ve been given (by Jaelah)

Posted by on November 1, 2016 in Brazil with 11 Comments

take up your cross-blog

god loves you










this cross we’ve been given. 

it is different than yours. it is difficult. meeting new people & then having to move on, because God is calling us somewhere else.

we recently learned from mom & dad that there is a region to the southwest/west of us where there are not many churches and so they need someone to go and plant more. and they need airplanes really bad too. so dad got the call.

We are planning to visit in January, so then we will know better if that is where we are supposed to go. we probably won’t move till next year or even the year after maybe, if we do at all.

it was difficult, as i said up there. our wonderful friends that have mostly all become like family. and they are family in the spiritual sense. :) and Santarém, we are finally here. our destination all along, and we’re (finally) here, after a year in Michigan, MTI (mission training international in Colorado for 3 weeks), then we ended up staying in the States longer because of visa problems, Campinas for 11 months for language school, and finally here. it probably seems like little, especially if you’re a missionary reading this who had a much longer process to get where you (hopefully) are now. but to our family, it was hard. hard to leave all those people, some (MTI) who we weren’t sure if we would ever see again.

so, i kind of side-tracked from my title, but i wanted to just say why i put that. the night they told us i thought of it. because almost from the moment dad stood up and pointed at the map, i got teary-eyed (i’m very sentimental) and knew that he was going to say there was a possibility of us moving (again)…

but, this is the cross we’ve been given, so we must carry it faithfully until the end, until we receive our heavenly prize from God in heaven.

and the thing is guys, is that, God did not give it to us & leave, then expect us to carry it on our own till we got our prize. He didn’t say we had to do it on our own & if we asked for help from Him or someone else He would take away part of our prize.


no, He gave it to us, but stays faithfully by our side, whether we know it or not. and we have seen that from Him. my mom says that He gave us wonderful friends in Campinas at church & some at us kids’ school. she was worried about that, but He provided and proved faithful. and now in  Santarém, He has provided many, many, many more.

so carry your cross, whatever it is, a mom or dad, a lawyer, a secretary, a nanny, a sibling, a student, a waitress, a cook…whatever it is. and when you stumble or fall, CALL OUT to Him, because He will be there to catch you.

i think most people struggle (sorry if you’re not one of these! maybe give us some advice on how to have more faith….:)) with calling out to God & not feeling Him, thinking He up & abandoned them. i have. people say, ”God where are you?! you said you would never abandon us. never leave us. but i don’t feel you. i don’t feel  your arms around me, helping me.”

and maybe you were thinking that i had a solution to this…but i’m lost too. i’m a sinner too. but i do know that God is there, and somehow we have to have faith & not forget that. i do have a poem that i found in a coloring book the other day. it touched me. it was wow, eye-opening.



one night i had a dream.

i was walking along the beach with the LORD

i noticed two sets of FOOTPRINTS in the sand.

one was mine, and one was the LORD’s

to my surprise, i noticed that many times along the path of my life,

there was only one set of FOOTPRINTS

the LORD said:

‘my precious child, where you see only one set of

FOOTPRINTS, it was then that i carried you.’


wow. it may not have touched you the way it did me, but God is there, and here is a confirmation of His love for us. that He carries us, thru trials, tribulations & hard times. there is a verse in the Bible that says, ‘blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love Him.’ (James 1:12 if you want it for yourself :))

so you see, there is no verse after that that says, ”and when you are going under trial, you must persevere all on your own, or you will only receive a sack of 1,000 gold coins instead of a crown of life.” nope, not there, and i’m pretty sure not anywhere else in the Bible either. because God is not like that guys. so if you just lost a loved one, or are going thru trial and you may not know it, a hard time in your life, God is there. and please DO NOT BLAME HIM for this. people blame God most of the time when they lose someone they love, but guys, you shouldn’t. and i know, it’s easy to say that because i’m not going thru that. but i did. i lost my grandma Jane (Steidinger) when we were in Campinas during language school. it probably lessened the blow that we were in another country so we didn’t realize it as much, but we still hurt from time to  time.  and my grandpa. wow, guys, i admire him. he came out with many scars, i’m sure. but he did not turn from God. he might have blamed Him at some point, but i don’t think he does in the long run.

lots & lots of people blame God. for lots of different things. but i have seen a lot of someone very very dear to them dies, and they blame God & turn their back on Him. like i said, we were young(er) & in another country, but my parents could have turned on God. said, ‘we’re done. we’re going back to the states,back to our old lives, & God, don’t think about calling us back here or anywhere else, cause we’re not going.” in fact, my dad has 7 siblings. they all could have turned on God. but none of them did. they are still following Christ, living for Him, doing His will, teaching their kids about Him, serving Him, etc. and here we are, still strong, might even be going somewhere else to help advance His Kingdom.

Job,  guys, read his story when you’re going thru something like that! it is a good reference. 😉

it is a joy to serve Him. there are trials, and hard times. but EVERYONE has those. because everyone on this earth is human so, technically, no one ”escapes”. maybe some people have heavier crosses than others. maybe some people live in a dirt shack made of falling apart junk & others live in a 2.2 billion mansion. maybe some are starving & have 1/2 meal a day, while others have 3 full ones, all 4-course made by the finest cooks. yeah, talk about differences.

but the ones in the shacks are no less than the ones in the billion-dollar mansion, guys. we NEED to see that. they aren’t less by any means in God’s eyes & really, shouldn’t be in our eyes either. sometimes we look at people that have better ‘conditions’ with more respect. and that’s fine. but when you see people living in shacks or a homeless person on the street, have the same amount of respect. help them out. let them know God loves them, and because He loves them, well then, that means you love them too!!

everyone could probably use some more lovin’ in this world, so how about we start givin’ some more?


sorry that i went off on like 3 different points (i didn’t count), i hope you guys followed.

if you have any questions feel free to comment below :) would love to hear from you.


God bless thanks for reading come back always!





Tania Bazzell on November 1, 2016

What wisdom. I am in tears. So thankful to see your heart, Mariah! What beautiful precious faith and each word so true! Your family has been an I inspiration to me as we felt called to Texas! And your dear Grandma was so dear to me!!! Thanks for sharing! I will be praying for you and the decisions your family faces trusting God to guide and work in your hearts! Love, Tania Always remember this world is not our home!! "The Eye of The Storm" was so meaningful to me in my last month's in Illinois.

Jarrin on November 1, 2016

Jaelah, you probably don't have any idea who I am, but yeeeeeears ago I went with your parents to Brazil and you stayed back. It was one of the most life changing trips I have ever experienced. It was there that Aldine looked at Renee Leger (Slagel at the time) and I and told us we were both destined to be on the mission field. I remember talking to your dad about it after telling him I could NEVER do that - I wouldn't have the support from my family and it would be so hard. Matt looked me in the eyes and he said "do you have a Daddy?" And I said "well sure but he doesn't even think I'm a Christian. He would be so upset if I left home and went into missions..." to which your dad replied "No, do you have a Daddy?" To which I remember saying "oh, well yes obviously..." that was in 2006, and in May of 2009 I moved to Mexico to CVE to be a missionary. I tell you all that for a few reasons. One, I'm a missionary and your story for how long it took your family to get where you are and where you call "home" now DID take a long time. I want to validate that for you. God grew you all in that time, and it was hard. It's ok to look back and see the hard and feel it, as long as you can look at it and see Jesus wove in and out of it as well. Two, you shouldn't feel bad for the tears in your eyes at the possibility of moving again. The tears mean you are investing in where you call home now and they mean that you are connecting with people. Tears are a good thing. Three, just like you said, Jesus hasn't left you, nor will He. Keep giving for the Kingdom! Blessings! Jarrin

Terry & Betty on November 1, 2016

Our hearts are so moved by the maturity of these comments! Yes, he can still be trusted by those whose hearts are intent upon following His voice. Our love and prayers!

Janelle on November 1, 2016

Thank you for your comment Miss Tania!! yes Grandma Jane was such a dear <3 She will always be remembered as a godly woman who loved God and others so so much! Thank you for your prayers! They are always appreciated! If y'all have any request we would love to pray for you guys too! Love, Jaelah thank you for the song also! will definitely look it up and listen to it! ;)

Janelle on November 1, 2016

Thank you Mr. Terry and Miss Betty! It was so good to have breakfast at your house that morning when we were back in the States! you guys are the ultimate hosts :) Amen! Love to y'all too, Jaelah

Dot Elliott on November 2, 2016

Jaelah, Wow, you do have a way to write! Continue to write! I don't know if you remember me, but I was with you at MTI. At that time it had been more than 10 years before that God had let me know that I would be going into missions, sometime in the future to an unknown destination. I tried to figure out when and where He wanted me to go. Finally after I realized He would let me know, He did just that, in His time. It took a long time to even get to MTI. It took longer to get actually get the support raised to be able to go. When we were at MTI I 'knew' I would be going to Verona, Italy. It was perfectly clear in my mind as I did not want anything to do with living near a world capital - Rome! I was studying Italian in the States, so I 'knew' I would be speaking well within 6 months after arriving. Isn't it funny how we think we know things! Verona? One month after arriving in Rome for language school I found out the door to Verona had closed. But I then had such peace with the decision to stay and work near Rome. (I love living near Rome!) Language - After a year I was struggling with the language. I was frustrated. Then 2016 hit and I started having more medical issues than I have ever had in my life! I had to go to different doctors, I had to have tests, I have had 2 surgeries (one requiring me to be in the hospital for 5 days!) What a way to improve your language! I now feel like I am starting to have real conversations with people. I've lived in Italy for over 2 years now. (I will be having radiation treatments very soon, so I'm not out of the woods just yet! Just learning more vocabulary!) Even through this I've seen lives change and those people say my presence here made a difference in their lives! Praise God! Things back home? Tough, one daughter had a baby that I knew was on the way when I left, all three of my daughters had car accidents (but no one was hurt in any), friends of mine (who were like parents to me) died in a car crash, my girls dad 'married' his significant other (so sad), another daughter severely broke her arm, another surprised us all with a baby the day after my last surgery, many other things happened. However, through it all I do see how God is there! How I thank Him daily for giving me the opportunity to share with many people I would never would have met without following His leading. Currently, there are still many issues I don't understand. I have the desire for my kids and grandkids to be able to come visit me. I'm not looking forward to having radiation (but thrilled I don't have to have chemo). But, I am again giving it over to God. In Him I put my trust. My 'go-to' verses this month are Philippians 4:4-7. To be able to share His peace is worth it all! Thank you for sharing! Thanks for letting me share. -Dot

Lindsay and Benny Childers on November 2, 2016

Love and continually praying for your family. Miss your jovial spirits. Jaelah, ma'am....I still haven't received my FB request. <3 I miss you little one and I think of you often and how special you are. Lindsay

Aldine on November 2, 2016

Jaelah, you are being greatly used by God and will continue to impact the world wherever you go! We are so proud of you and love you so much! Great writing and sharing of your heart and the Word of God!!! Hugs, Aldine

Janelle on November 6, 2016

Thank you Aunt Aldine! I love you all so much! you guys are such a HUGE blessing to our family. You ARE family <3 And I have thought about what you said. maybe one day a book will come with all my blogs ;) who knows....will have to wait and see what God has planned for the future I guess :) Love, Hugs, & Kisses, Jaelah

Aunt Joy on December 8, 2016

wow Jaelah!! I just read this and two things: One: I will be praying hard for your sweet family! Change is hard; however change can be so good for our spiritual walk with our "Daddy". Two: Your writing and understanding AMAZES me! God has given you a talent and always be prayful that he will use that talent to further His kingdom and I know you will! :) Love you all and miss you so much. AUNT JOY P.S. I wish this were last year cuz I would be coming to visit in May when we brought naomi and sheree :)

Janelle on December 9, 2016

thank you so much Aunt Joy! your prayers are SO appreciated! Amen! I am thankful that He has given me this talent! I really do love to write! Miss you guys so much too! Give everyone a hug for me/us! Jaelah Eden PS. awwww yeah me too! :)

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