Tuesday, September 30, 2014

DAY 1501: PSALM 28

On edge tonight. My sweet Brownies have sucked the life out of me today. Bodies were piled on top of me all day. A little person sat at the door of the bathroom waiting for me to get out all day long. It's been a crazy two weeks for these kids and I know they sense the uncertainty. The silliness has waned and they have two parents who are either stuck in a fog or deep in thought. I want to move on and just go back to the way things used to be. The waves keep crashing in.

Sorrow over a WM family who discovered their sweet girl has a brain tumor this summer. Praise God it's benign but I still can't imagine. When we thought Bella was having absence seizures that was my fear. I told God then and I still believe now something like that would crush me in unimaginable ways. I hope that I would still trust in God's goodness but I simply do not know how I would continue to breath. I do know The Lord shields you in ways you would never dare to dream. The prayers of His saints carry you farther than you can imagine. Having to put Lilly on the altar almost a year ago I can attest to the peace that surpasses all understanding. Even in the uncertainty now which will not end in death I can attest to that peace that surpasses understanding. I have hope that God will see all of this through. I have hope that anger and sorrow won't be this thick forever. Hope that God will use this for His good and for His glory. Hope that God will provide answers, healing, restored relationships and renewal. Joy and laughter will once again be hallmarks in our home.

There is a lot of sitting and waiting and receiving right now. None of those things are my favorite. I feel like dead weight and old tapes have begun to play that this isn't that big of a deal, forgive and move on. This is such a stinking mess with so many crazy uncontrollable parts that just makes it complicated. Barf!

I can't believe two weeks ago we were in the most beautiful place we'd ever been and now we are in the middle of a pile of ugly poo. I'm so ready for paradise.


God help me to remember that this life is but a vapor. God help us to live courageously for your glory and not our own. God help heal our hearts. Help turn anger, disgust, sorrow, shame and grief into something beautiful. Give us the courage to fully embrace those emotions so that we can heal. Give us a vision for the future and may this not be in vain but rather an opportunity to protect those in the future, to point hearts towards you and to grow us closer to you and a deeper understanding of the depths of your love, power and grace. Keep bringing us back to our mission to live for eternity not for the temporal. Please come back quickly Lord Jesus. Our hearts and souls groan for you. Thank you for your people who have loved us so well and have held up our arms when we just couldn't. 

Psalm 28:
This is my nightmare:

To you, O Lord, I call; my rock, be not deaf to me, lest, if you be silent to me, I become like those who go down to the pit. (‭Psalm‬ ‭28‬:‭1‬ ESV)

I can't do the good days without you God and I definitely can't do the dark days without you. You are my rock. You are what gives me hope, what I cling to when nothing else makes sense. Thank you for knitting my heart together with yours. I want to know you more.

Where I find my strength and rest:

The Lord is my strength and my shield; in him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to him. The Lord is the strength of his people; he is the saving refuge of his anointed. (‭Psalm‬ ‭28‬:‭7-8‬ ESV)

For so long I didn't trust you God. I praise the work of YOUR hand that I can indeed trust you wholeheartedly. That is a gift from you and once again one of the many ways you have been gracious to me.

For sweet friends who dropped off sweet notes, balloons for the kids, sat in it with us today, prayed for us and generously gave gift cards to feed our family The Lord has been gracious to us.

For the reminders that Jesus wept The Lord has been gracious to us. 

For God's understanding and never ending mercy The Lord has been gracious to us.

There are so many sorrows in this world and hearts hurting tonight. Oh Jesus please come quickly. 

D

Monday, September 29, 2014

DAY 1500: PSALM 27

Today I'm stuck in a place of sadness and disgust. The past 7 years feel so tainted. They shouldn't but they do. The place I used to take pride to be apart of feels like a broken down palace. The trust I once held is now completely bankrupt. It all feels so incredibly sickening.

Every single bit of it feels so complicated and confusing. All the data points together feels like such gross incompetence or severe blind spots that everyone on top has. It's so grossly disappointing. It's all so very gross. I am aware that I'm very much critical at this stage of things.

I do have hope in The Lord but my resolve in hoping that everything can be restored is failing today.

I know God can mend our family and heal wounds that can not be seen. I have much hope in that. I just don't know how everything else can go back. Maybe it's absolutely foolish to think it can or should. I hate that my focus is on this rather than advocating for my kid. That will again be the central focus at some point. Tomorrow, maybe the next, or next week. All of it is so incredibly gross and could have been avoided. I don't know if I'll be able to move past that fact.
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More hope tonight but the ever present cloud is still so black.

Exhaustion reigns tonight and my entire body aches. Feeling this verse tonight:
We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; (‭2 Corinthians‬ ‭4‬:‭8-9‬ ESV)

Ps 27:
The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?

For he will hide me in his shelter in the day of trouble; he will conceal me under the cover of his tent; he will lift me high upon a rock.

Hear, O Lord, when I cry aloud; be gracious to me and answer me! You have said, "Seek my face." My heart says to you, "Your face, Lord, do I seek." Hide not your face from me. Turn not your servant away in anger, O you who have been my help. Cast me not off; forsake me not, O God of my salvation! (‭Psalm‬ ‭27‬:‭1, 5, 7-9‬ ESV)

For breakfast, lunch and dinner that was provided by friends The Lord has been gracious to us.

For hope continuing to break forth from the darkness The Lord is so very gracious to us

For a bed to lay my weary head The Lord has indeed been gracious to us.

For precious friends who have loved us so well in the middle of the fog The Lord has been gracious to us.

For Jesus who died to set us free The Lord, the Great I AM has been so very gracious to us.

D

Sunday, September 28, 2014

DAY 1499: psalm 69

So many thoughts swirled through my head today. Not enough brain power left to unpack them today. Things feel very uncertain and up in the air right now. There is no road map that tells us the correct way to travel or how we should get from point A to point B. Only time and space can reveal what lies ahead. It's one day at a time for right now.

For a long overdue day with family without a fury of heart wrenching and adrenaline inducing phone calls or texts God has been gracious to us.

For mostly good health for every member of BrownTown God has been gracious to us. We could be figuring out the ropes of epilepsy right now.

For coming home from the Heard with pervasive sadness surrounding my heart and finding needed supplies from the grocery store, flowers and clean laundry on my front step God has been gracious to us.

For a sweet friend who made lunches for the kids and I tomorrow when making them myself seemed like an insurmountable task God has been gracious to us.

Through friends who organize and deliver meals God has been gracious to us.

For being able to cling to hope knowing that God can make what feels impossible into a possibility God has been gracious to us.

I feel as if God may beckon us to actions that may be harder than anything else we've ever done before. The thought of the death of self that might be required in the future feels like an insurmountable task. Yet God is faithful and He will never leave us nor forsake us. For today He is inviting us to grieve with Him, to allow Him to help us carry the burdens that seem to swallow us up with anger and grief. Today He beckons us to sit and rest at His feet.

I can almost see what would most glorify God in this chaotic, complicated and grief filled situation. It's strange. I see the homerun which seems impossible at the moment and yet I feel compassion and great understanding if the homerun does not occur. He holds together all the moving parts and in that I have hope. My God can heal the wounded and He can make beautiful things out of the dust. The fact that I find much comfort and joy out of those truths is yet again another way The Lord has been gracious to me.

Psalm 69:
Deliver me from sinking in the mire; let me be delivered from my enemies and from the deep waters. Let not the flood sweep over me, or the deep swallow me up, or the pit close its mouth over me. (‭Psalm‬ ‭69‬:‭14-15‬ ESV)

DAY 1498: psalm 100

Light has begun to break forth from the darkness. In the midst of the anger, sorrow, numbness, and feelings of betrayal glimmers of hope have been granted. I've been praying the last couple of days asking God to be gracious to our family. I would not have said this earlier today but tonight I can see the ways He indeed has been gracious to us.

Through a sweet friend who brought us meals and took away our dirty laundry The Lord has been gracious to us.

By providing a last minute sitter so that we could be encouraged, heard, loved on and even laugh with our CG God has been gracious to us.

For a couple of hours outside in great weather with friends even though heavy hearted God has been gracious.

For texts and emails from friends who are praying for us God has been gracious to us.

Remembering that God Himself is fighting for us God has been gracious to us.

Through a gal who had eyes to see and send an email God has been gracious to us.

There is still a very thick fog and intense emotions but today there is hope and for that God has been gracious to us.

I know The Lord will provide for us in the upcoming weeks and even months. Things will eventually slowly but surely return back to normal. The normal may have to change but even if so The Lord will provide.

Ps 100:
For the Lord is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations. (‭Psalm‬ ‭100‬:‭5‬ ESV)

This feels more true today than it did yesterday. The Lord is indeed being gracious through the storm.

D

Friday, September 26, 2014

DAY 1497: psalm 23

This morning I am thankful for the joy of simple things like balloons that if even just for a brief moment made things seem normal. I know as time passes more and more moments will begin to feel like normal but for now the majority of life feels like a swirling dark pit of painful and raw emotions. To complicate matters I have no emotional bandwidth to give to my kids who I grieve for and long to give my everything to especially now.
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Thankful for the joy of a laughing baby. What a sweet end to yet another difficult day. Difficult in new ways which at times feels even worse.

Still caught up in strong emotions. Betrayal, anger, rage, sorrow, guilt, confusion and chaos. In the in between spaces there is no functioning. Thankful for gift cards that have fed our family the past couple days and for a sweet friend who brought dinner tonight. I can't even manage to pull a sandwich together or unload a dishwasher. I feel ridiculous.

I know things could be so much worse. There's a particular family I'm thinking about whose current situation seems impossible and the options for them lead to great sorrow. This world can be so difficult.

Psalm 23:
I know at times I've done nothing but grasp at straws instead of lean in. I know God is in this but today God feels like a distant and cruel relative.

D

Thursday, September 25, 2014

DAY 1496: PSALM 56

I feel like I'm walking in the middle of a nightmare. Our family is in the shadow of the valley of death. I wish I could say I fear no evil but I know my God is with me. There is hope because my God is Sovereign. The same Sovereignty that wrecks me is the Sovereignty that gives me hope. The story is not finished. Light shall break forth from darkness. Righteousness and justice shall prevail. Shades of hope and even joy can be mixed into a heart full of grief and sorrow. This is not the end of the story. He can and He will make all things new. 

I often take comfort in the things I can control as a parent. The things I can put in place to protect my children from danger. Ultimately though I have absolutely no control. I can do all the right things, put all the safety precautions I can into place and the enemy can still creep in even in the places you trust to be some of the safest. The world is full of hurt and pain that is unimaginable. It grieves my heart how sin has affected one of my children tonight. I've been tempted to let bitterness wrap it's tentacles around my heart. In the end the fury and the rage will only rob me of life. Forgiveness brings healing and brings forth life. Though I may still be tempted to let bitterness take root and though I still may struggle to trust the hearts of man I will choose to trust the God who holds all things together in His hands. I will choose to trust that He is Sovereign and that He can and will take this nightmare and turn it into something beautiful.

Ps 56:
Be gracious to me, O God, for man tramples on me; all day long an attacker oppresses me; (‭Psalm‬ ‭56‬:‭1‬ ESV)

Be gracious to us oh God.

D

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

DAY 1495: PSALMS 91

Another emotionally exhausting day. Thankful to be ending today feeling heard and cared for. Tonight to say that I'm grateful for community is a crazy understatement. I feel like six others locked arms with us and have been fighting a battle with us.

Psalm 91 brought great comfort and sorrow today.

Because you have made the Lord your dwelling place— the Most High, who is my refuge— no evil shall be allowed to befall you, no plague come near your tent. (‭Psalm‬ ‭91‬:‭9-10‬ ESV)

I don't believe the above is true and frankly that's hard to reconcile sometimes. I do believe that even when it appears that evil is winning ultimately The Lord and His justice will prevail. 

D

DAY 1494: ZECHARIAH 2-4

Emotionally charged day. Reminded today that I can't place my hope on anything other than Jesus. That is the only place I can find a lasting pura vida.

Today I'm thankful for God's provision in a situation that feels greatly lacking in provision from others. I'm thankful for timing and a period of great refreshment and oneness with my hubs before going through a trial. I'm thankful for community and the great assurance of God's Sovereignty. I'm thankful that the story is never over even when it feels that way. I'm thankful The Lord can redeem any and every situation for His glory. Thankful for the sweet reminder of a friend last night that God doesn't always deliver us from the valley of death but He promises to walk through it with us.

--/-
Why don't kids ever cooperate and just go to bed on nights when everything has been drained already? Rough night solo but thankful for the sweet sounds of children snoring now. I will say again, parenting is NOT for the faint of heart.

Read an article about North Korea and I must say the chaos I'm facing now pales in comparison to the atrocities that those poor people face everyday. Heart broken for that country and for the many around the world who daily experience horrors that are unimaginable. Jesus come quickly.

Struggling with intense white hot anger right now. May I not respond out of the weakness of my flesh but rather die to self even when I'd much rather give full vent to my anger. God help me not grow weary of fighting the good fight.

Zechariah 2:
I so don't feel like reading tonight. I'd much rather medicate with chocolate.
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No comfort in this tonight but I do take comfort in the fact that He fights for us.

D

Monday, September 22, 2014

DAY 1493: ZECHARIAH 1

Battled with fatigue all day. Tried to combat with soda to no avail. I have the funk complete with headache, scratchy throat and painful face. Probably the reason for my I can't wait for bed feeling all day. Hate feeling like a Zombie.

Still going through the pains of reentry in BrownTown. I imagine all of us are going through it to some degree. I miss my Costa Rican friends who brought me cold drinks and drove me around in a golf cart. I bet nobody gets a sore throat in Costa Rica.

I should have shut it when I wrote about sleep trained children. That had ended by 12 that night. I do miss my kid free bed but I also know these little Brownies won't be crawling up to join us forever.

On another note did great being GF till dinner when I realized I didn't have a plan and pizza was easy. I was going to get up and go to Well but when I woke up at 5am and felt dumpy I figured more sleep would serve me well. I don't know how I would have lasted today if I had gone.

Zechariah 1:
Definitely feeling sick. Boo!!!

Reading this chapter the biggest take away I have is how different God speaks to and interacts with each of his prophets. The message is the same but the delivery is unique and tailored to each of His children.

D

Sunday, September 21, 2014

DAY 1492: HAGGAI 1-2

Tougher re-entry day today. Smalls frys are doing good besides being a bit more clingy but the two biggest are messes. So many fights and over the top drama. It's all the more fun in a messy dirty house. Pura vida!

I was thinking at one point as the howls from one wouldn't stop and I was holding a baby while trying to load the dishwasher and two boys were yelling at each other once again that actually being able to say pura vida in the mess of life is the key. It's easy to think life is all good at the Four Seasons in a place that is incredibly beautiful. The key to having a Pura Vida though is not basing what I think about life on my circumstances. Seeking out gratitude is one of the keys to having a pura vida. Pretty confident living in Costa Rica is also one of the keys to a pura vida and I'm willing to do my research. :)

Slowly but surely I think I'm starting to crack the code on one of my kiddos. He goes kinda bonkers during worship at the Dash and tonight I just sat down with him instead of fighting through it the whole time. It was so much better. I also just took him out to get a drink while he was struggling to not be a distraction during the talk. I respond in frustration or anger instead just took things for what they were. I simply can not change that kid or make him do what I want him to do. I can come along side him and train him the best I can or I can keep doing the things I've done in the past and try to change him. I have no control over his choices but I can surely change mine. I tell my kids that all the time. Great to actually act on what I teach.

My girl has been grieving over a loss of friendship. It's complicated and it's not as either of us would wish. Hate her heart being hurt by other people's choices but that is just life. Trying to teach her through all of this to not self protect and that maybe one day things can once again be restored.

Haggai 1-2:
Short and sweet book. Goes well with the sermon today. God first everything else second. Zzzzzzzzzz

D

Saturday, September 20, 2014

DAY 1491: ZEPHANIAH 1-3

I hate that I can be so cynical. I hate that I can get so worked up over stupid things. God help me to see people the way you do and love like you do! Help me to get the log out of my eye instead of trying to get the speck out of my neighbors eye. Ugh!!! Hate that I care about things that don't even matter!!!

Good to be back with all my Brownies tonight. So thankful for sweet friends who loved them so well while we were gone! Normally after something like this we'd end up with a pile of kids in our bed. We already told them no!! It was so nice to not have a single child in our bed while in CR that we are hoping to keep that going for a bit linger. They are all piled up together even Bella and normally that helps. Definitely had fall out today by the three bigs. Oddly enough so far the three smalls are doing great. The little girls maybe a tad bit more clingy but not much.

I miss paradise but so thankful for these six cuties. I can't make Dallas beautiful but Les and I can become more diligent about carving out more time and space to continue to invest in our marriage. The effort to get away is so worth it!

Friday, September 19, 2014

DAY 1490: HABAKKUK

In the air above a vast ocean. I've never been more excited about heaven as I am after this trip. The last five days I have seen the glory of God reflected in creation in ways I've never seen before. To think that heaven is even more incredible is mind blowing. How much more amazing was creation before sin entered the world? I can not wait to find out. In the meantime I pray I live out my life faithfully.

This morning gazing out upon "paradise" I couldn't help but wonder what it would be like if our lives looked differently. What if we had the 2.2 kids and both had jobs and more freedom to go on vacations, not at the four seasons, and so on and so forth. Just writing that gets me choked up. I'm so glad God took what I thought I wanted and turned it into something more wonderful than I could have ever imagined.

There is this tree in Costa Rica that's bark is thorny. Birds roost in that tree because monkeys and other critters can't crawl up it and the birds are safe. God's sweet wonderful provision. He cares and takes care of us in so many amazing ways. The thorns on the trees don't seem like provision, in fact they seem like a hinderance or nuisance, yet it's provision. If God cares about providing for the birds of the air how much more does He care for us. God help me to trust you fully. Help me to trust in your daily bread, your daily provision even when it looks like thorns. Thank you for changing my nevers into my realities. Thank you for unplanned pregnancies, failed adoption plans, a baby with whooping cough and all the many ways you have provided for us big and small. Help me to surrender MY PLANS and fully embrace yours. Help me not exhaust myself for nothing but rather abide in you.

A cherished friend has done exactly what I need and has pointed out that I can finally go GF or continue being miserable with allergies and sleep issues. I love how that girl is wired. So unlike me. She didn't just spur me on but also had great ideas on how to tackle the beast which I'm very thankful for. With all that being said as I get together my official GF plan I'm going to try to be as GF as I possibly can. My desire for perfection or rather my non functioning perfectionism keeps me from doing the good I ought to do. Starting somewhere is better than not starting at all. So today begins a different way of life. May I honor and glorify The Lord with my entire life including my body and what I put in it. Thankful as of this afternoon I can say I've been GF.

(Freaking out in the air over how amazing the ocean is. Weepy yet again over how majestic The Lord is. The God who created all of this loves me and pursues me and the knowledge of that is simply more than I can possibly take in.)

Just realized that one year ago we were in the hospital with Lilly still unsure what the future would hold for her. If you would have told me then that Les and I would be on an incredible chance of a lifetime vacation exactly one year later I would not have believed you. Thankful only The Lord can see the entire picture.

Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail and the fields yield no food, the flock be cut off from the fold and there be no herd in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will take joy in the God of my salvation. (‭Habakkuk‬ ‭3‬:‭17-18‬ ESV)

D

Thursday, September 18, 2014

DAY 1489: MICAH 6-7, NAHUM

Unfortunately haven't been sleeping great at night but I imagine better than at home. I think I'm just a horrible sleeper. I think as Brownies get older and possibly even now I need really investigate this and get a better handle on it. Lack of adequate rest will kill me softly.

Now that I'm writing this and my allergies are just as awesome in Costa Rica as Dallas I really think it's confirmed that I need to be GF. I feel better all around. I don't know why living life without gluten feels so darn overwhelming. I do think it can be done and I know God will help me and provide. This is probably an area I just haven't wanted to fully surrender to The Lord. Part of it is laziness and part of it is just not wanting to give up what I want to eat. Food is an idol. I hate how easily I can turn the good things God has given me into a distraction from Him. How good is it that He loves me more than I can imagine even with my fickle heart.

This place is still crazy breath taking. My breath literally catches in my chest. Thankful for this time and although not excited about the lack of beauty and creation in Dallas I can't wait to see my babies. I'm so thankful for them. So thankful for my husband. Thankful for friends. Thankful for an amazing church. Thankful Jesus whose love is as vast as the ocean and who is always faithful.

Last full day in paradise. Hard not going and doing and seeing everything knowing this is a rare and beautiful opportunity for us. But my booty will be at the beach soaking it all in.

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Great last day. This trip had been such a gift and blessing. Had no idea how much Les and I needed this. It probably took Costa Rica for us to make the effort to go solo. Time away is important. Thankful as we re-enter the beAutiful chaos we live in we will be more unified. Need to pray for what this looks like in the future but know time away is a must for us. So thankful for this time. Words can not express how great it has been.

Read this morning. Lots of thoughts on it. Must go pack so we can get up early and take full advantage of the couple hours we have tomorrow in paradise.

New friends, sunset kayak adventures, sea turtles, my favorite things converging together beach and thunder storms, outside in God's glory, outside showers, monkeys, sea shells, hermit crabs, lots of laughter, glimpses of newlywed life, tico Rico in a bowl, Inside jokes and great music.

D

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

DAY 1488: MICAH 5

Made the transition from momma mode into full on wife mode. I miss my Brownies but the switch has been flipped. I had no idea just how much Les and I needed this time away together. I love that I get to be the mom of six kiddos but I needed this great reminder that before those little stinkpots I am a wife and Les came first.

Still can't get over how unreal this place is. I have no clue how the Blockers were able to give us this great gift. I don't know if I could do the same. I hope until my selfish heart grows I don't have to face such situations. Hate that this is the condition of my heart.

Beautiful sunset on the beach, hubs praying for a woman in need, new friends, amazing views from a crazy beautiful golf course, hermit crabs galore, outdoor showers, sweet friends watching my babies and giving sweet updates, waves crashing, lightening, and ample time connecting with my hubs.

Off the read Micah 5 and then off to bed. Costa Rica wakes up early and goes to bed early.

Ready to dream about Watermark Costa Rica.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

DAY 1487: MICAH 1-4

Still exhausted from this previous week. Went into a town today to get groceries and it was great. Ready to move to Costa Rica :)

Where we are staying compared to outside the compound feels so surreal. It's almost like fantasy land. Strange getting adjusted to it but I am loving the beauty.

I was uptight this morning but I definitely think the boys were on my mind and I haven't fully switched out of mom mode yet. I'm still tired and my head feels a bit crazy. I have either a cold, a sinus infection or nutty allergies here which isn't helping with thinking clearly. Really hard thinking straight.

All of the above has given way to being where I am now. Laying by the beach enraptured by it's beauty, listening to the occasional thunder and my mind has wandered back to the things above. It's breath taking here and as I write that I could start crying again.

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Lightening bugs, lightening, beauty, amazing critters, monkeys in a tree, outside shower while it's thundering.

No real words to explain this time. Insanely grateful.

Micah 1-4:
The word that sticks out most today is complacency. To me it's an ugly word. The things we can justify and turn a blind eye to. Israel has done that and it's taken them to some incredibly dark places. We first turn a blind eye and it isn't long before we are justifying and joining in. Lord let me not grow complacent.

Tonight talking with my hubs I feel at a loss about what our thing is. There are lots of things that get me fired up or that I'm passionate about but it hasn't come together into the thing. That might be a blessing in some ways but in order ways it's frustrating. What is it God? What is the thing we should strongly uphold and champion?

D

Monday, September 15, 2014

DAY 1487: jonah 4

Feel like an overstimulated kid tonight. Sat my booty down and now all I want to do is sleep.

So much today and so very little sleep over the last two days.

Bullet points.

- can't believe we are in Costa Rica. The beauty is breathtaking. Cried as the plane descended. I don't deserve this and yet God is His sweetness has blessed us with this trip.

- I am struggling immensely with shame and guilt. I've definitely noticed a pattern that when I'm extremely sleep deprived this struggle flares like crazy.

- not fully relaxed yet but praying my body will hold up without Lilly and I'll be able to settle in tomorrow.

- rainbows, iguanas, bats, tiny hermit crabs all filled my heart today

- good talks with hubs on the second leg of our flight. Looking forward to four more great days of adventure with him.

Jonah 4:
Gods great mercy. Jonah misses it.

D

Sunday, September 14, 2014

DAY 1486: jonah 2

Exhausted. Four hours of sleep last night. Need to be out the door by 3:45am. Going to start trip exhausted but it's raining all week so sleep will be easy to come by.

So thankful for amazing friends willing to coordinate and watch kiddos for us. Feeling guilt about all of it but trying to rub it in and enjoy the love and this amazing gift.

Drop off went well for the most part. I'm too exhausted and too much in got to get ER done mode to ball. Thankful for that!!

Reading Jonah 2 in car, going to get the rest ready and sleep for two hours. Sleep is for the weak!

Okay now feeling weepy.

Love each of you and thankful!!!

D

DAY 1485: jonah

Up way later than I'd like to be up. Lots of things left to do. Wanted tonight and tomorrow to look different but hoping I can lean in and at least make the most of it. Didn't do great this evening being snappy at my sweet hubs. Thankful for his grace.

Fun today watching my kiddos play most of the day with friends they love. Their exhaustion from the fun of the past two days hit hard late afternoon and it was hard to get them moving and lots of meltdowns.

Reminded tonight that life is but a vapor. Plans we made for two of our boys changed last minute and it's been a hustle trying to move pieces around. Thankful the pieces are fitting and for sweet friends willing to jump in and help! I knew God would provide and He did. I do confess my freak out moment at 12am when my Bit was up crying and this whole thing just seemed crazy to me. It feels crazy because I simply do not have control. I can't control whether or not my kids will have a good time while we're gone. I can't control if they miss us like crazy and are super sad. I can't control if they act like wild maniacs or if they will be full of tude and ungrateful. I can't control if my Bit makes my sweet already tired friend even more exhausted. I can't control if it rains the entire time we're in CR. I can't control if my dog dies while we're gone. I can't control if any of us gets hurt or sick or a bad case of the gout. I can't control if I forget twenty really important things.

I'm ready to have this crazy part done and be on a plane with an incredibly strong cup of coffee next to my amazing hubs kid free thanks to wonderful friends. Tminus 28 hours till then.

In all my sleep deprived oh my gosh I'm going to forget a million things fog it truly came to life that our plans our futile unless The Lord allows them to come to fruition. All the planning and striving is truly meaningless apart from Him. Things can change in a blink of an eye. If I could only wrap my head fully around this. Cease striving, remain in me and I in you. Jesus help me remain. Like a dog who returns to it's own vomit I forget every day to cease the striving. You've got this and you love me like crazy!

Jonah 1:
Forget how great these stories can be!

Oh Jonah, trying to flee from God. Stubborn disobedience. I totally get it unfortunately.

Couple things stand out:
- when the storm has hit Jonah is sound asleep. He knows why the storm is raging and yet he doesn't fear. He also doesn't offer up the reason for the crazy storm on his own.

- Jonah knows how to make the storm stop and yet even when the men choose not to throw him overboard at first he won't just toss himself in. It seems as if he would be content going down with the ship and bringing everybody else with him. Not a lot of compassion for his brethren. This is the reason why Jonah ran to begin with.

- the people on the boat trusted in God after the entire ordeal. God used Jonah's disobedience for HIS glory!

-not sure how much Jonah would have called the big fish provision but it was provision none the less.

Now the Lord provided a huge fish to swallow Jonah, and Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights. (‭Jonah‬ ‭1‬:‭17‬ NIV)

Often God's provision doesn't look how I want it to look. I think I need one thing and yet He provides some other ways. Thankful His ways are not like my own.

Zzzzzz,
D

Friday, September 12, 2014

DAY 1484: OBADIAH

Interesting day. Got to see the beauty of the body of Christ work together at the Nest. Love what a fine oiled machine it has become. Thankful for the gals who busted their bums to make it great today. Love that I get to use my giftedness in that ministry. Missed hearing the speakers which is a bummer because I LOVE and adore the couple who spoke today. They are living out what I hope our family will one day look like. A beautiful legacy of walking with Jesus faithfully. Got to hang with some pretty cute two year olds though. I don't know where the term terrible twos came from. Two year olds are actually pretty awesome. It's been awhile since I've served in yellow. More perspective now. Good to see and be apart of the ministry that serves like crazy so that the Nest can even happen. 

Three extra cuties around our house tonight. The extra entertainment allowed me to get most of the kids stuff pack for this week. Two more sleeps till we drop them off. Makes my heart beat faster thinking about it. I know they will have fun and their world will not end but still hard. Excited though!!

Obadiah:
This is a prophesy against Edom. Being a bystander to evil is no better than committing the evil itself.

This verse caught my eye:
The pride of your heart has deceived you, you who live in the clefts of the rocks and make your home on the heights, you who say to yourself, 'Who can bring me down to the ground?' (‭Obadiah‬ ‭1‬:‭3‬ NIV)

God don't let my foolish pride be a blind spot and be an avenue of deception.

D

Thursday, September 11, 2014

DAY 1483: AMOS 8-9

Thankful for today. Another rough one but we made it. Worn down a bit by the disrespect and disobedience but the oldest two. Oldest boy really pushing boundaries these days. The kid has so much energy it's insane. I don't need a trampoline I need a treadmill to strap that kid to. Think I need to consider soccer for that kid in the spring. Ugh! I'd much rather be free to go camping whenever I want to and have freedom on the weekends. Wonderful lovely boys!

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Amos 8-9:
I'm just going to throw this out there but sometimes when I read it's as if God is bipolar. I say that tongue in cheek but it goes from utter destruction to restoration. That's so how it is though. We have to be broken in order to see our desperate need for Christ. There simply is no getting around the pain of brokenness. Out of that devastation comes the beauty of restoration. Such a paradigm shift to pray for your children to be broken. You must die in order that you might live. God's ways surely are not the worlds ways. I seek comfort at every single turn.

These verses are interesting especially after hearing about the heroics of William Tyndale. Want my kids to know these stories. Freedom is bought with a high price. So sad how freedom cheaply we daily sell our freedom.

"The days are coming," declares the Sovereign Lord, "when I will send a famine through the land— not a famine of food or a thirst for water, but a famine of hearing the words of the Lord. People will stagger from sea to sea and wander from north to east, searching for the word of the Lord, but they will not find it. (‭Amos‬ ‭8‬:‭11-12‬ NIV)

D

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

DAY 1482: AMOS 6-7

Looked at the ten day forecast for Costa Rica and it's looking like we need to make sure to pack board games. 80 percent chance of rain the entire time we are there. So had my heart set on being on the beach and watching spectacular sunsets. Maybe we'll catch some rain breaks and get a chance to stroll on the beach after all. The good news is that because September is one of the rainiest months it's also one of the most beautiful months there. The other bonus is that since it looks like I won't be wearing a swimsuit much I can just keep shoving those M&MS in my face. Disappointed but life is full of it and surely being disappointed in Costa Rica can't be all that bad. Still incredibly thankful to be blessed with a ten year anniversary trip and with sweet friends willing to watch my Brownies.

Today started off with a big smash and crash. Dealt with one kid's shenanigans pretty well this morning but then did not handle another situation well afterwards. To make it even more wonderful is I was turdish right before doing bible. Get on my plan darnit so I can teach you about the bible! Ugly. This parenting gig is not for whimps.

After the morning debacles it was hard to gain traction the rest of the day. Got everything school wise done but it was a long haul. These days are long and hard work but it's good for character development and I'm thankful.

A sweet friend is bringing over leftovers tomorrow and I am so thankful!! Food is definitely one of my love languages. Surely one day it won't be so hard to feed my family. I feel ashamed to write such things. How blessed I am to be able to feed my family. Wish my heart was filled with gratitude and joy doing it but instead I view it as the ultimate beat down. God help give me new perspective. I selfishly pray that it would become easier to feed this crew.

Amos 6-7:
Again these chapters reek of America. Fat and "happy", materialistic, complacent and feel secure by things that are false. We are prideful and take pride in self reliance. Truth is snuffed out and turned out and labeled as intolerance and bigotry. Justice and righteous is the plumb line God holds up to Israel and the same will also be held held up to America. Woe be to us if hearts do not change.

D

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

DAY 1481: AMOS 3-5

Brain tired. Baby up and super wiggly. Getting closer to our school days looking like a full day. Grammar and writing left to add in a couple weeks. Oldest handled doing the same math as her bro incredibly well today. All of us did have a coop hangover but I think we'll get into a good routine in the upcoming weeks.

Kids still up and it's driving me slightly bonkers.

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Toads stole my attention. The toad thief not as on top of taking care of the toads these days. She must know that her Momma enjoys them more than her. I could probably sit and watch them gobble up bugs for hours. I'm pretty sure that makes me weird but I'm okay with that.

Better job abiding today. I had to mentally switch from slugging out the day and being annoyed by the boys being crazy to being okay with their childish antics. I really wish our backyard had more to offer them. It would be so fantastic to turn them loose on an acre or two. Lots of over the top dramatics but I know it's because they are exhausted. In my own exhaustion it's been hard giving them the sympathy over the "badly broken bones" in their poor little bodies that they are desiring. Ready for it to get cold so they will be more sedentary. Screen time turns them that way too. So thankful they are well and their bodies can crawl and jump and bang holes into walls and make lots of noise and chaos. Thankful for the sweet and tender moments mixed in with the I wanna pull my hair out moments. Thankful for the daily sanctification. It's painful and brutal some days but it's so worth it for each one of these kids. I am blessed beyond measure.

Luke read a book today and was so proud. He doesn't know the names of most letters but he knows the sounds oddly enough. I think we both needed that encouragement. I see his confidence growing and I'm so thankful for that.

Amos 3-5:
Today, today is what my heart yearned for. This reading is sad and reminds me a lot of our country. In the sadness and the continued judgement that will fall upon Israel I am reminded of God's great love for us, His sovereignty, His power and might. I needed to be reminded of how much He loves me regardless of whether or not I shoved M&MS in my face all day long. He loves me when it's hard to love my children. He loves me even though I'm stubborn and I kick and scream. I'm loved by the creator of the heavens. The creator of wonderful things like toads and people and beauty no artist can fully capture. That guy loves me and it's crazy and it doesn't make any sense but He does. Nobody can snatch me out of His hands.

And just like that exhaustion has hit like a ton of bricks.

D

Monday, September 08, 2014

DAY 1480: AMOS 1-2

Felt bad this morning not getting up to go work out. Right now I don't know how I would have possibly made it. Running on fumes.

Good first day of coop. Kids had a blast and two in particular wish they could go back tomorrow. No thanks. It's great but one day a week is just fine. Thankful for this good fit for our family.

Came home and I was a grump and so were the kids. Definitely seeing more need to get down time from the chaos. Once we can get our school rhythm down a mandatory quiet hour will be necessary for my sanity.

Missed worship at ReGen tonight and wanted to cuss up a storm. Made me realize how much I've been running on fumes lately. Feel like I've been colliding into things rather than abiding. This evening I could feel how withered I am.

Amos 1-2:
This isn't exactly what I was hoping for this evening but I do trust that this is exactly where I need to be. This is a list of nations and the judgement of fire that will be rained down on their walls. If it isn't bad enough the worst is saved for last and it's God's very own people.

Good stuff remembering the judgement I deserve but thanks to Jesus my debt is paid in full.

Zzzzzz
D

Sunday, September 07, 2014

DAY 1479: JOEL 1-3

Tired. Today I'm feeling weary of feeling like I keep screwing this thing up. Not enough of me to go around. Some days that really stinks.

Once again my fumes are going to this time. Hate that. Sleep deprived. Not sleeping well. Think it might be Costa Rica anxiety? Right now I'm more anxious than excited. Boo!

Joel 1-3:
God sends an unexpected yet devastating army to humble His people and turn their hearts towards Him. More disaster is on the way if God's people don't fully turn from their evil ways and repent. So much is revealed about God's character in this book. He can and will use anything to get our attention and He longs to fully restore relationship with His people.

D

Saturday, September 06, 2014

DAY 1478: HOSEA 11-14

Okay day. Got stuff mostly ready for co-op Monday. There's so many emails though that I think my brain might explode. I think I hate email.

Had an office space moment today at Mardel's. I probably looked like a madwoman and I felt like one too. At the time I think I would have paid a hundred bucks for the books I was copying. Now that the toner has settled and in the end I'm saving close to $50 bucks I feel better about the whole ordeal. I'm sure by tomorrow I'll feel stellar.

Fun family night. Thankful for this crew. I am ready for this entire crew to be asleep now though.

Hosea 11-14:
These chapters are a mixture of the horrors of Israel's ways, the justice that will be bestowed upon them and the great mercy and redeeming love of The Lord. It's crazy how much He loves even while we are still sinners.

Whoever is wise, let him understand these things; whoever is discerning, let him know them; for the ways of the Lord are right, and the upright walk in them, but transgressors stumble in them. (‭Hosea‬ ‭14‬:‭9‬ ESV)

D

Friday, September 05, 2014

DAY 1477: HOSEA 10-

Good day at Perot Museum with sweet friends. I'm whooped though. Late nights have stacked up and it feels as if my body is falling apart. Hurray mid-thirties!

Last night found out a sweet girl around Abbie's age has relapse with brain cancer for the second time. I don't know this family personally but I've been following their story for years. My heart aches for them. I can't help but ask God why? Why has that family and that precious girl been put through so much suffering? How can God receive glory through all of this and yet He can and He will. I pray it's for sweet Kate to be healed on this side of heaven but if it's not I know He is good all the time even if it doesn't feel that way. God help this family. 

Hosea 10:
Eyes not staying open but great verse:
Sow for yourselves righteousness; reap steadfast love; break up your fallow ground, for it is the time to seek the Lord, that he may come and rain righteousness upon you. (‭Hosea‬ ‭10‬:‭12‬ ESV)

You have plowed iniquity; you have reaped injustice; you have eaten the fruit of lies. Because you have trusted in your own way and in the multitude of your warriors, (‭Hosea‬ ‭10‬:‭13‬ ESV)

Ouch.

Zzzzz
D

Thursday, September 04, 2014

DAY 1476: HOSEA 7-9

Tired. Sitting here rocking w/out a baby in my arms and realizing how physically, emotionally and spiritually tired I feel. Other than anxiety creeping in about Costa Rica I feel incredibly content though but my time with God has lacked much. I've really tried to remain grounded in the truth that I have been set free this week and it's been pretty sweet. Still it's been thing after thing and check list after check list. Lots of good things but forgetting that this extrovert needs solo quiet time and frankly there hasn't been much to go around. 

Today was rough. Boys were full of energy and I was a total knucklehead and too focused on what I thought we were supposed to get accomplished. It's awesome that it only took till 10:30 to realize that. Sheesh! I feel like I should have a small herd of boys after this pack simply so I'll be able to put all my mess ups to good use. These boys are so fantastic. Thankful for them even on the days I feel like I'm living with the Three Stooges.

Gretchen fell off the roof today. My cycle is so incredibly bipolar right now but I'm thankful that my "no period in Costa Rica" prayers seem to be answered. I know anything is possible at this point but I'm going to consider myself thankful for today. Speaking of periods which makes me think of chocolate I've been using M&MS hits to help deal with the crazy in my days. My hubs mentioned something about how sweet potatoes were this morning and how everything is being genetically modified to be full of sugar. For whatever reason that really resonated with me and dangit I don't want to be a slave to sugar but I am. I am an addict and truly there is no getting around that. I need to kick it to the curb and my addict mentality wants to go immediately to that M&MS jar and use as much as I can before I'm convicted enough to truly do something about it. Ugh. So incredibly gross. 

My Bunny has some awesome diaper rash  and it has been traumatic for the both of us. I just know I'm scarring her from having to manhandle her to wipe her poopy bottom and put diaper cream on. I've definitely experienced the joys of changing a poo diaper on a super rashy bum before bit this firecracker took it to a new level today. We're both going to need counseling before those cute pinchy buns are fully healed. 

Hosea 7-9:
Thankful for the moments of quiet tonight. Tank filled.

Chapter 9 reminds me so much of America. There's so much in this chapter but this verse stuck out the most:

Like grapes in the wilderness, I found Israel. Like the first fruit on the fig tree in its first season, I saw your fathers. But they came to Baal-peor and consecrated themselves to the thing of shame, and became detestable like the thing they loved. (‭Hosea‬ ‭9‬:‭10‬ ESV)

They became detestable like the thing they loved. The thought of this is horrifying. It makes perfect sense but it's horrifying none the less. I think it's so shocking to me because you see it happening all around. People who have given over their lives to their own pleasures and selfish desires and where that road can lead people. 

God help me not be the frog in the pot of boiling water. Thank you for your Word that is living and breathing and pierces the soul and the spirit. Thank you for community who is willing to speak truth and love. 

D


Wednesday, September 03, 2014

DAY 1475: HOSEA 5-6

Good day. Not an easy day but most are not. Realistic expectations are golden.

Interesting night. Pulled up to WM and lots of punk kids there for Shoreline. I miss working with teenagers.

Nest volunteer kick off went wonderfully. It gets me choked up every time when I see how God has brought together such an incredible team. It took time but that ministry runs beautifully. Sweet to see a room full of eager volunteers especially when The entire thing used to be as big as our group of volunteers tonight. Sweetness. Fun speaking to a group of gals about God. I miss doing that. Thankful I have six little ones who I get to teach everyday. It really won't be all that long before we can breakdown scripture on a deeper level with them.

Hosea 5-6:
So tired. Israel's unfaithfulness and God's everlasting love. Truly hard to wrap my brain around it!!!

For I desire steadfast love and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings. (‭Hosea‬ ‭6‬:‭6‬ ESV)

D

DAY 1474: HOSEA 4

Kinda whooped today. Lil Bit up till 2am last night and then up off and on. I definitely think it's teething as she's been a total mess today too. There's molars and all kinds of teeth erupting in her mouth. Hopefully I'll wake up tomorrow to a baby with a full set of teeth.

Kids super rambunctious. Might need to sell a kidney so I can take them to drop in gymnastics a couple times a week. I once was a foolish twit who thought boys began to calm down around five. After five it takes even more activity and constant motion to get their energy out. Need to get the flat on the jogger fixed so we can run laps around the neighborhood. Or maybe a trampoline so they can jump off the roof of the house onto a safe landing. I could always profit off of their boundless energy and have them roll tiny cigarettes with their tiny fingers for extra money. Obviously the molars and the energy has completely zapped mine.

Second day of school went fairly well despite everything. Sweet friends stopped by with a really sweet treat which had my crew incredibly jazzed. It was the fuel we needed to push through. So far pretty fired up about the choice I have made for bible and science. Might even have my neighbor start coming over for bible. Really like how hands on and conversational all two days of science has been. I could end up hating it all by the end of everything. There's always military school.

Still giggling over a certain neighbor who thinks our house is always clean and organized. Maybe our ministry on our street should be to let people come in and see the real deal. I feel like at least a half dozen have stopped by and gotten a good look at how we really roll. Need to have that family over for dinner and not clean a single thing.
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Fun times chatting with a friend this evening. Love that gal and treasure the times I have to hang out.

Hosea 4:
The word whore is throughout this chapter. Hard to read that harsh of a word but it's appropriate.

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge; because you have rejected knowledge, I reject you from being a priest to me. And since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children. (‭Hosea‬ ‭4‬:‭6‬ ESV)

Feel like there is lots of rejecting of knowledge these days and adoption of utter foolishness.

D

Monday, September 01, 2014

DAY 1473: HOSEA 1-3

Good day. First day of school in BrownTown. Nothing magical and not a complete full day yet but good day. My hubs had lots of opportunity to connect with our neighbors. Love that. Love this hood God has placed us in.

Praying through whether or not I should do ReGen. I do want to do it at some point but right now it sounds like a royal beat down. The homework sounds awful and I really would love the time on Monday night to have a couple uninterrupted hours with Jesus. I'm open though and I'm at least going to do the groundwork book since I'm sitting in Open Group right now anyway. I am aware today though how much I have an issue with pride and control though. If I'm going to go through ReGen I'd prefer to lead. Part of the reason is I'd be less likely to be a slacker and part of the reason because I like to do things my way and have a difficult time being lead. Hurray for pride and control! Life would be a lot easier if I could just stop sinning. :)

The baby is angry and I probably need to rescue my hubs. She has less than two weeks to stop teething.

Hosea 1-3:
It's hard to understand why God would have Hosea's life become a living illustration of Israel's unfaithfulness. Why must he marry somebody who The Lord knows will be unfaithful. Why must he call his children those awful names: no mercy and not my people? Yet I know that God is good and His story is beautiful but by no means comfortable. God help me to be willing to leave my idol of comfort so that I might fully be apart of your beautiful story.

D