I was driving in the car this morning and was completely overwhelmed with the presence of God. It was so tangible I can hardly explain it. Everything around me seemed greener, brighter and so much more beautiful in those few moments. Four or five hours later I read something that made my heart so sad, angry and dissapointed that it hurt. Also so tangible I can hardly explain it and I found myself in tears. As I was wondering around my house trying to make sense of my thoughts and feelings and keep my kids occupied I realized something. I can’t change what happened or what anyone believes, I can’t fix things I can’t fix, and I can’t make everything ok or even make it go away. ABOVE ALL ELSE… God is good and I can trust Him in all things, whether I am feeling the beauty of His presence or the ache of His heart
I have been dwelling on this phrase for a few days. It has been rolling around in my head and surfacing in those moments when I want to be impatient. Sometimes I make the right choice and other times I have momentary amnesia (= However, the other night I had a new insight into 1 Corinthians 13. I was asking the question “Why does patience come first in the list of what love is?” I feel like God pulled away a layer for me. If I will first be patient and listen with a heart of love and a desire for relationship then the Holy Spirit will step in and lead the rest of the way. This takes submission, listening and following but what you get in return is a map to walking out love in its truest form. Something we could never do on our own anyway, but could quite possibly die trying. This is about relationship. A journey. That is why it starts with patience!
The sticky film you can never seem to mop up completely from under the kitchen table….I have decided to call it “glaze”. Sounds fancy and as if it is supposed to be there, which makes my kitchen a lot cleaner than it was two minutes ago. Done!!
We have been going through a “season” with Luke. Yes, he is absolutely adorable, but he has also learned the words “EWWW…YUCK!” Also adorable, unless you are his mother and set down some homemade chicken pot pie in front of him and hear those words in chant like fashion. (= Being the innovative mom that I sometimes pretend to be, I asked Ben to get the ketchup for me!! Yes, I drizzled ketchup over his chicken pot pie so he would eat it and partially so I would not have to make him anything else to eat. I realize that some parenting books would say to let them go hungry and then feed them the same food for breakfast, lunch and dinner until they eat it, but you do not understand how this boy works. He will wake up hungry in the middle of the night, or worse, will get up really early (before 6am) crying out for food and never go back to sleep.
This morning when Luke was done with breakfast, he just cleared his tray of everything…juice cup,spoon, and bowl of cereal complete with milk inside…all to the floor. We tried to ignore it and just go about our business and the older boys did a great job of not giving it too much attention, but after everyone was excused from the table Jack came over to me and said, “Mom, maybe we need to start saying prayers at breakfast too.” Love that boy and Amen!!!
Even though the snow barely covered the little bit of grass we have in the back yard, my kids went absolutely nutty this morning. I told them to go look outside and that was the end of it. If I would have known what was to follow I would have delayed their looking! The cutest part was when Jack said, “This is the best gift ever” and John said, “I have been waiting for this my whole life!” Luke simply said, “mommy, snow!”
It was 7:30 am and I was fighting them off. I had to bribe them with a DVD just to be able to eat my breakfast before going outside. Finding the “perfect” snow clothes was a job in and of itself. There was yelling, pushing and several rounds of tears (and we won’t even go into how the boys acted….haha). We finally made it outside and all was well with the world. It is amazing how much effort it took and how much of a toll it took on the kitchen, but it was worth it. These boys definitely have a need to conquer something every day (they should put that in the Charlotte Mason homeschool book). I think the list would be more complete if it read like this:
1. Something to do
2. Something to take care of
3. Someone to Love
4. Something to Conquer
The snow is fun, but I am kind of glad it is warming up (don’t tell my kids)!!
pictures to follow (=
If there is one phrase I say over and over this would be it…”use your words, use your words, use your words.” Whenever one of my kids screams or whines I tell them that I cannot hear them or help them until they “use their words”. Well, you would think that since I say it so much that I would have it down myself, but I sometimes find that is not the case. Today I got upset at how my husband responded to me and instead of “using my words” to ask him what he intended to say I got upset and left the room with my feelings hurt. What am I, a three year old??? Uggg! To make it worse, later in the morning I was getting onto one of my kids for getting angry with their brother before talking it through with him (insert conviction and more uggg!!) Yes, you guessed it. I immediately emailed my husband an apology. I guess I need to learn this lesson before I can expect my kids to do it right 100% of the time. That is why there is grace for today and bright hope for tomorrow (=
You know..the one at the end of the tunnel! We had major breakthrough today. Jack read!! He realized he could do it. He sat down and read 50 pages in his reader. Something opened up for him. He is sitting by me right now and just said “mom, now I am going to be reading all of the restaurants for you” (food is very important to him). This is not just huge for him, but for me too. As a new home school mom working with my first kid I am constantly asking myself if this is actually going to work. It works for other people but they are probably better at this than me, so will it really work? Well, it does and it did. I feel like I was successful at something for the first time in our home school journey. We have had small accomplishments, but this is the first big breakthrough and it is so rewarding…even more than I thought it would be…to see your child get excited about reading and start inhaling every book that looks even half way interesting. My heart is so full of a really deep and rewarding joy. Thank you Lord for this moment…I am treasuring it fully!
It has been quite a month. Mainly because my little one fell and busted up his teeth. He ended up losing one, or so we thought and we finally got him into the dentist for an x-ray and they said the tooth was fractured and the root was still in the gum and the other tooth was loose and would have to come out too. Now we are looking at extracting both. I basically just had a pit in my stomach. Now, I realize that it is not the end of the world and it is “only his baby teeth” but it is HIS BABY TEETH!!! The cutest teeth a kid will ever have…one of my favorite features about him. I don’t think I have fully grieved the fact that this happened to my baby, but it bothers me. He is oblivious to it all, except for a few inconveniences and of course will still do nose dives toward the fireplace despite my obvious discomfort (= Anyway, through this whole process what I realized is that there is this lingering pocket of unbelief in my heart from when my dad passed away. After all, we were praying and all believing that he would be healed. I know he is in a better place, but we still did not see what we were believing for. For the last year my heart cry has been to see God show up in a major way and do the impossible. I want to see the unseen….I am contending for it. God revealed to me that just praying for Luke was not enough, but I needed Him to heal the unbelief in my heart. I have tried to overcome it on my own by just saying that I believe, but this scripture called me out. Mark 9:24b ” I do believe, help my unbelief.” That is exactly what I feel!! I set aside some time to seek the Lord on this and it was amazing what He did in my heart. I woke up Monday of this week with this untainted hope and expectancy in my heart. I have not felt that in so long, and it was not from a place of striving or fighting, but of rest. It is actually an awkward feeling, but good. I am resting and trusting and God did it all. I have let go of my expectations of what healing looks like and just have this expectancy in my heart that God is on the scene and will be true to His Word. I am asking for Jesus to have compassion on Luke and to heal his teeth and gums…I am believing for a miracle in his mouth, but the amazing part is God started with a miracle in my heart.
You know….the years you would rather be jogging through, running through, sprinting through or even flying through, but God prefers that you walk through slowly with eyes wide open so you don’t have to learn all these lessons again when the cost is greater. For me it is being at home with small children (aka “the refiners fire”).
I love to jog. I know some do not relate, but it is one of my favorite things to do by myself. My head feels so clear and I feel so alive after a good run. Anyway, between being pregnant three times, three c-sections, three nursing babies and then the fact that there are three boys to take care of I have not exactly gotten to jog that much over the last six years. I do however go on walks.
One beautiful spring day I loaded up the double stroller with my five year old and my three year old, including drinks and snacks for the journey, wrapped on the baby sling and tucked my little two month old inside. It was our first big walk since he was born. It felt so good to be out, however, pushing 80 pounds around the neighborhood is not as refreshing as I thought it would be. As we were rounding our last corner, exhausted and ready to be home, I look over and was instantly overcome with feelings of depression. It was a young girl in her 20’s with her mp3 player clipped to her sleeve, her headphones tucked perfectly in her ears (blocking out the whining coming from my stroller) and her new jogging shoes moving so smoothly past our toddler parade. She looked so peaceful and light without a care in the world and it was then that I realized, I am in “the walking years”. (more to come on how God has redeemed this moment for me)
Seems like years since I have written a blog, and as a matter of fact it has been. Something about that third kid just makes it hard to sit and type, but I am feeling it is more necessary than ever, so here goes……