Saturday, May 30, 2015

Rambling Fool

I feel like I've been a rambling fool today since my brain is having a hard time so going to stick with bullet points.

1. So thankful for a sweet family to date swap with. Love the family and thankful for the ways my kids are loved on when we are gone.

2. Started reading a book on ADD. So many of the things I feel I struggle with can be attributed to attributes of ADD. Maybe all my joking about having it has some actual validity. It's been enlightening so far.

3. Been thinking about Job today and the perfect timing of being in that book right now. Having God talk directly to Job really has me thinking about the fear of God verses fear of man thing. Why would I care about a gaggle of knuckleheads here on earth if in the end I too will be face to face with God and deal with any fear of man I might of had while living on this fleeting earth. It's insane to think about putting the value of man's opinion over God's in light of that.

This past week when I got my hair done I said something to the effect of being a weird homeschooling parent when asked where my kids go to school. I confessed to my hubs when it hit me that saying things like that is all born out of my own insecurity. Rooted in that insecurity is fear of man. I know what I probably would have thought of a woman with six kids one on the way who homeschooled back in the day. I so don't want to be written off as an over the top child sheltering homeschooling freak show that I feel insecure about. Throw in all the Duggar news and I fear getting lumped in with the same things they ascribe to.

The thing is I really feel God has lead us down this path of many children and homeschooling. I was opposed to both. I've kicked and screamed along the way. I've thrown hissy fits and tantrums and yet God has been gracious with me through it all. I would not have chosen this life on my own and yet I'm so thankful God has set us on this big family path that includes homeschooling. If this is the case, I need not fear what man thinks of it all. I can 86 the self deprecating comments made out of insecurity and confidently talk about my half dozen children that I homeschool.

4. Got a chance to start a conversation about the iEvil and what to do about it. Throwing it in the trash is not a realistic option so was good to brainstorm with my hubs about how to be in the world of smart phones and constant connectedness and yet not of the world. It occurred to me as I was trying to justify texting, voxing, emailing, ect as a mom that a simple phone call would probably take less time in the long run than trying to have a conversation via other means. I think I'm good at multitasking but in reality I really stink at it. More talks and an actual plan to come but I feel for the first time that instead of feeling hopeless in what to do I feel empowered to set up wise boundaries that frees me from the chains of constant connectedness.

5. More Job - was thinking about a situation today that was so freakish and bizarre that I really feel it can only be explain by some kind of divine intervention or an adversary meddling to stir up strife and disunity. Here's the thing the devil and his horrible minions have no power or authority that the Lord hasn't given them. So even when the adversary is allowed to throw curve balls I believe God's intent in allowing those things to happen is to bring about His plan and bring glory unto Himself. It's hard to see that when stuck in a situation like Job's. It's hard to trust when life feels wearisome and painful beyond belief. It's hard to trust God when pain unimaginable is happening all around us and through out the world. Yet His mighty hand is over it all and His is strong enough to bring beauty from ashes.

Job 39:
Thankful for the Lord's Sovereignty. Thankful for His power and might and that He is in control over all the details.

D

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Friday, May 29, 2015

Insert Title Here

Hard to get this started today when even coming up with a title has been a challenge. Lack of sleep is eating away at my brain function.

Thankful for beautiful cool weather, friends, muddy happy children, exercise balls that help ease sciatic pain, our "friends" the Penderwicks, getting caught up with neighbors, running water and soap and cleaning wipes that helped to clean multiple pooplosions today, wonderful husbands who plan and cook dinner and for washers and dryers.

Job 38:
"Where were you when I laid the earth's foundation? Tell me, if you understand.

On what were its footings set, or who laid its cornerstone— while the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy? (‭Job‬ ‭38‬:‭4, 6-7‬ NIV)

Love the visual of these verses. Would not want to be Job right now. Listening to three knuckleheads and a windbag is nothing like being face to face with God being asked these questions.

D



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Thursday, May 28, 2015

Yawn

Sleep was incredibly elusive last night. Insomnia, restless baby and tons of contractions made for a very sleepless night. Needless to say today was pretty stellar. We all survived but we didn't do much other than survive. Trying to practice meekness while being a hot mess is no walk in the park. Trying to practice meekness on any given day is no walk in the park. I see some serious sanctification coming my way. Hurray!

My boys first baseball game. It's not tball anymore but it's still so cute to see them figure it out. I heart little boys in baseball pants. Super super cute! Glad we pulled the trigger on baseball for my boy. It has given him something to channel some of his intensity into. Bummer to only get in two innings before the game got called due to weather but fun while it lasted. Thankful to be doing this but will also be thankful when the season ends after eight weeks.

Job 35-37:
Hard to continue to read Elihu but mostly because I know it's so easy for me to be guilty of his arrogance. He's got some great points and it's clear he's no stranger to the Lord. Yet his assumptions about Job are wrong and he misrepresents some of what Job was saying.

When I can take a few steps back and look at all of Job so far it's hard to figure out how things even got to this point. Three friends come to visit Job to comfort him in his immense grief. Somehow they get off their mission of weeping with those who weep and get locked onto proving Job wrong. Since being right turns into the main focus they not only loose sight of comforting Job but they actually only increase his grief. Sitting in that is incredibly difficult.

I can't help but think about how often I have to tell my kids that it's not their job to be the parent. To flip the tables onto myself, it's not my job to be anyone's Holy Spirit. It's not my job to catch anyone in sin or beat somebody over the head trying to reveal sin in somebody else's lives. Truth in love not truth to be right.

I think some of my disdain for Elihu is also one of the things I'm struggling with when it comes to the church. I think somehow things can be set up in such a way that it makes it super easy to become an Elihu. Who doesn't want to be the most spiritually mature most put together person in the room? Maybe that's just my struggle and that's why I can resonate so much with Elihu and why he makes me want to wretch. I think we can put people up on holy pedestals to a persons undoing. Part of the struggle is that the most humble and meek person in the room rarely is the one in the room with command of the room. Jesus had that market nailed but it's a battle for everyone else who gets up in front of others, especially the ones like me who actually like it. I simply don't know what to do about this in regards to myself. I hate that my natural bent is to be a prideful arrogant beast who would love a nice serving of self glorification for breakfast every morning. I'm so thankful for a Savior who saw it fit to come down to this fallen chaotic earth so that He could die for this prideful arrogant child. While I was still in complete rebellion He loved me and sought me out so that I might become His own. Amazing love how can it be?

D

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Undercurrents

Started writing and for whatever reason none of it really seemed to capture where I'm at right now. Today was pretty busy from the get go and I've been in and out of the house most of the day. I woke up feeling stressed about how our house felt covered in an inch of filth. That's when I jumped on my cycle of crazy. I feel guilty about the condition of our house and yet lack the energy to stay on top of it or at times to even try. Since I can't live up to my own expectations I get angry at my husband. It pains me to even write that. God sweetly and softly opened my eyes to see things for what they were today. So got to start my day with a good look in the full length mirror over the condition of my selfish and sinful heart. Not fun and broken hearted over how my sin hurts others but so thankful for God's loving kindness. Thankful for my hubs and his sweet and caring nature and patience with my hormonal craziness. Poor man has lived with a crazy woman for four and a half years of our marriage. 

Midwife came and my three oldest put on a wonderful performance for her. Then I got the privilege of talking about death when one of my kiddos told the midwife that he hopes Baby Cupcake doesn't die. Again the sting of the reality that this world is not as it should be hit. I can't reassure my kids that Baby Cupcake won't die but I can reassure them that God is good no matter what. I'm so thankful that I can say that wholeheartedly and confidently without doubt. It's been a journey to be able to truly believe that God is good all the time and I'm thankful for God's faithfulness to replace lies written on my heart with truth. 

Heard a sweet friend give her testimony tonight. The world might say the timing was horrible but I believe in a God whose timing is perfect even when we don't understand. The bonus fun was being at a different church tonight. It's was refreshing, beautiful, and painful being at a different church tonight. There was lots of hugging which part of me loved and yet the part of me that has become so much more aware of the world where some people hate physical affection felt uncomfortable. It was hard yet good to see that church is just difficult no matter where I'm at right now. I don't hate it but there are definitely things that are much harder to want to be apart of and I'm sad that there's any kind of struggle. Life is still just filled with small undercurrents of sadness right now. Even in the quiet moments of sadness my heart is so full of gratitude for this season. If I could completely separate out the shrapnel my kids have come across during these past 12 months I'd be nothing but thankful for all that the Lord has done this past year. There has been purpose in the pain. I am learning to surrender the wounds of my children's hearts over to the Lord as we'll owing that He can make all things beautiful. This is still an ongoing journey of completely letting go but thankful for God being right in the middle of the process. 

Thankful to have an opportunity to get my hair colored professionally for the first time for free. I know I've talked my hubs ear off about my new "BFF" who did my hair. The great thing about getting your hair cut or colored regularly is the gift of time with people. So refreshing to me to meet people out of my bubble and get to hear more of their story. Even more fun to realize what an incredibly small world this truly can be. So grateful to get an opportunity to meet someone new in my hood and have a chance to hear about somebody else's story. 

So thankful to run into my next door neighbor this evening. The timing was inconvenient but threw that out the window and jumped at the opportunity to talk to her. This rainy season has kept me from bumping into her more often. I really wish I knew a way to love her well in a more tangible way. I do love her so.

Job 32-34:
Elihu is an arrogant windbag. This verse that came from his mouth is wonderfully ironic.

He makes them turn from doing wrong; he keeps them from pride. (‭Job‬ ‭33‬:‭17‬ NLT)

As much as I find Elihu completely repulsive and obnoxious I know I can be just like him. Bleh!!! I hate hate hate my pride and I know I am so incredibly full of it. 

Sitting here really mulling this over and I think my Elihu issues don't just come from pride and a desire for self glorification but I suffer from a meekness deficiency. I know I'm lack in this area but when I think about what I struggle with and who I want to be my real obstacle is a huge lack of meekness. This quality really sums up what I lack and what I want to be. Hoping to drift off soon but closing my eyes really crunching on this.

D

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Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Sucker

Don't feel great which is pretty common these days. Wish I had the ability to handle it gracefully. Still just a grumpy ole troll. Surely in all this rain a toadstool will grow large enough for me to go live under till the end of July. 

Speaking of toads, all my adamant talk of NO MORE TOADS at the park today was a bunch of hot air. One boy with dimples smuggled a toad in his backpack and this hot mess of a mother, well I'm not even going to finish the sentence. I probably need to have an intervention. Seriously though, what mother could say no to a little boy with puppy dog eyes who is so sad about having to let his toad friend Turbo go. Total freaking sucker. Good thing I really like having those darn toads! Motherhood has dealt me lots and lots of surprises along the way. Being a lover of toads is most definitely one of them.  I think it's part of the child in me that has refused to grow up just yet. Truth be told, if we had more space there would be many non-rodent critters of many kinds residing with us in this crazy zoo. I do wish we could get rid of one horrid cat and figure out a way to get a robotic dog. 

Job 29-31:
That would be better than facing God's judgment. For if the majesty of God opposes me, what hope is there? (‭Job‬ ‭31‬:‭23‬ NLT)

This verse stands out the most to me today. Job sounds like a pretty stellar guy. I wonder how well his friends really knew him. So many questions mostly about what in the world is going on to make his friends continue to dog pile him when they had originally come to comfort him. Maybe it's just that misery makes us crazy uncomfortable and we desperately long to fix rather than to sit. 

D

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Monday, May 25, 2015

Few Words

Few words tonight. Thankful for many things. Thankful for a God who meets us right where we are.

Job 25-28:
And this is what he says to all humanity: 'The fear of the Lord is true wisdom; to forsake evil is real understanding.'" (‭Job‬ ‭28‬:‭28‬ NLT)

D

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Sunday, May 24, 2015

Not Alone

Thankful to actually be excited about going to church this morning to hear a friend preach it up. It's been awhile since I've actually wanted to go. This is no knock on my church. I'm still struggling with church in general. Really it's my rose colored glasses that have finally been shattered and I realize that (gasp!) there truly is no perfect church because we're all just a bunch of sinners trying to pursue Christ passionately and it's going to get all messed up at different points along the way. If my hubs and I were given a vision for a church we could rest assured that it would be jacked up in some way or another because we're just as jacked up and sinful as everybody else. Yet the Lord loves His unfaithful blemished bride. So very thankful for that.

Worship was so good for me this morning. God so sweetly reminded me that He is on this journey with us. He will never leave us or forsake us. He's in it on the hard days and with us down the road when the journey doesn't have the same kind of sting. He's with us when things continue to crop up and the pain becomes fresh all over again. He's with us and He will guide us every step of the way.

I feel like I understand for the first time what God has meant about things not supposed to go back to the way they were. He was sweet to give me a vision of what it could look like and hope for the future. Thankful that what we hope for as the best or what we desire to hold onto most often does not come close to what God has planned for us if we are willing to just trust Him, to wait on Him and stay the course even if it doesn't make any sense.

Instead of napping this afternoon as planned the adults in BrownTown had a lovely afternoon of sanctification. Gentleness, restraint and patience were the object lessons. Who needs a nap when you can choose heart surgery instead. Thankful for the many lessons this one amazing and stubborn child will teach us over the years.

Thankful for a sweet husband who was willing to help me upgrade our toad tank. One of our children found another toad and in a moment of sheer insanity I said he could keep it for a few days before having to release it back into the wild kingdom. Well, this child had been so happy to have his own pet that this dang softie let a few days roll into a week and before I could finally kick the extra toad out of the now crowded toad tank that darn toad went off and "married" one of the toads we already had. The owner of the toad was so fired up about the nuptials that I simply couldn't make him get rid of his darn toad!!! I couldn't make the owner of the two original toads get rid of one of hers to make space either. So we busted out a bigger tank that was originally my first Christmas present from my hubs and gave the newlyweds and the third wheel some extra space. May they live long and prosper. I'm hoping my children have not caught on to the fact that if their mother happens to thoroughly enjoy the pets of their choosing it's hard for her to be anything more than a permissive softie. I love those darn toads.

Job 22-24:
These are the scariest verses to me of all of Job:

I go east, but he is not there. I go west, but I cannot find him. I do not see him in the north, for he is hidden. I look to the south, but he is concealed. (‭Job‬ ‭23‬:‭8-9‬ NLT)

As much as there are things in this life that I fear or hope never happen I do know deep down if God is in the middle of it I'll be okay eventually. If I search for Him though especially in the midst of great pain and difficulty and can't find Him I'm completely sunk!

D

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Saturday, May 23, 2015

Heart Burn

Woke up feeling pretty crazy again. The sleep thing is really kicking my tail. My thoughts get clouded and the prince of chaos tries to take me out. Thankful for my hubs who gave me time to just lay down and rest and sit in the funk. 

Really caught up in the grief of knowing that serving played a pretty big role in what took place last year. The collateral damage of making a choice to serve every Sunday is very real for our family. But the truth is for every choice to expend time and energy on one thing causes less time and energy for something else. How much of my serving "Jesus" has served me more than anyone else? I know I don't want to bury my talents and the workers in the field are few. I will be honest thought, it's far more fulfilling to use my gifts and talents in places other than my home. At home I'm faced with all my inadequacies and my short comings. I'm a horrible home manager. I don't manage time well, I'm inconsistent, I am clueless when it comes to decorating, I'm disorganized, meal planning and cooking seem like insurmountable tasks on most days and the list goes on and on. But I can serve and even if it's not in my sweet spot I can feel like I actually helped or was part of accomplishing a goal. If it is in my sweet spot all the better. Have I been deceived over the years over what is best? How many weeks went by that finding time to connect with my husband was difficult? How much weight did my kids feel as we had to rush off to be at such and such a place? How many meals did we miss eating together as a family? How many times did I just give a neighbor a wave instead of engaging because the clock was ticking? How many times did my soul run weary from the pace of life and my heart long for quiet extended time with God? Have I chosen wisely with the things I've invested in? The time is fleeting and the seasons will come and go so incredibly fast. My adversary has already lost my soul but is on constant prowl to rob me of peace, to steal and destroy whatever he can. He will distort the beauty God intended and come disguised as an angel of light. Have I chosen well or am I living a life that is slowly drifting away from truth and from the goodness God has planned? Time is such a wonderful gift. It's more precious than I could have ever imagined. Lord may I be a good steward of the time you have granted me here on earth. Lord help me discern what is truth and what is off the mark. Right now I feel as if I've been an incredible fool. 

Job 17-21:
Hit with how crazy it is for these three friends to continue to escalate and ramp up their argument to a man who is suffering like Job who is supposedly a friend. His friends seem to have gotten wrapped up on being right and have gone straight for the jugular to prove they are correct. So hard to read. Even harder to get that piercing stab to the heart knowing I've been guilty of the same. Everything begins to fade away and the mission of being correct takes precedence over all else. So gross. The truth is if you stand on the truth you don't have to hammer in that you are right. Truth tends to bare itself out over time anyway. 

These verses make me want to throw up and it scares the heck out of me all at the same time.

"I must reply because I am greatly disturbed. I've had to endure your insults, but now my spirit prompts me to reply. (‭Job‬ ‭20‬:‭2-3‬ NLT)

Zophar is so convinced and confident that he is right. He probably feels it deep down in his spirit that God is prompting him to deliver this message of truth to Job. He's convinced himself that he should play the role of the Holy Spirit. 

I can see this same blood all over my own hands too. It's so easy to take hold of a cause and feel so emboldened and passionate about it and be off. Or to see an area of "sin" in another and be confident that if the "offender" doesn't see things the same way they are in moral failure. I've never been guilty of such! I know my flare to be uber passionate about whatever the latest cause to be passionate and right about can be a huge source of prideful arrogance. There are causes to be emboldened and passionate about but if it's not a cause JESUS himself was passionate about we should be weary and cautious if the way God may be leading us is the same road He wants everybody to walk. 

D

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Friday, May 22, 2015

Shredded

I've put this off long enough tonight. I don't even really have many words or have the ability to put how I'm feeling into any kind of sense. I just feel the weight and the heaviness of how crazy this world can be. My heart aches for so many people and for so many things tonight. I'm so very excited to read Job tonight and continue the uplifting feeling.

Actually it really is kind of fitting. I'm wrestling with the weight of human frailty. It's so easy to get it completely wrong and yet uphold the banner of Christ. Oh how we so easily abuse His name and His cause. How easily we get it all wrong and yet feel as if we have completely nailed it. Job's friends are an obvious example of that. Aren't we all examples of that to some degree though? We are all so fallible. I know this and yet lately the weight and heaviness of that has hit me straight to the core. It makes me want to never speak again and maybe for the first time ever I get being a monk who has taken a vow of silence. I'm completely shredded and yet the more wrecked I become the more and more I know that God is good.

Woke up with two pervasive thoughts this morning. The first came from this verse.

What I always feared has happened to me. What I dreaded has come true. (‭Job‬ ‭3‬:‭25‬ NLT)

Last night I wrote out the things I dread. This morning this verse popped into my head. Then the conversation I had with a friend in the past about how things that we fear the most tend to happen. I know I was being jacked with and my mind wanted to spiral and question the goodness of God. Tonight I can say I His goodness more today than I did yesterday. I feel completely wrecked and shredded and yet I know He's good. Although I ran head first into a sundae from Braum's I'm also running arms open to my Dad.

Job 16:
Even in the midst of his utter dis pair and heart ache Job knows where his ultimate hope lies:

Even now my witness is in heaven. My advocate is there on high. My friends scorn me, but I pour out my tears to God. (‭Job‬ ‭16‬:‭19-20‬ NLT)

D

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Raw

It's crazy late but chewing on so many things right now. It occurred to me last night that I've been anxious this week by the dreams I've been having. It's funny to me how difficult it is for me to recognize the feeling of anxiety. I don't think I'm an overly anxious person but for all I know maybe I am. Anxiety to me feels like a weakness so it makes sense that it would be an emotion that I choose to stuff or ignore. I don't feel like people who struggle with anxiety are weak. Some of the strongest and bravest people I know suffer daily with anxiety.

I think my anxiety has come from two of my kiddos doing things out of the ordinary this week. Tuesday my oldest went with my hubs for his last night of Citizens Police Academy. It turned out to be so great for her to spend that time with her Daddy and she came home beaming. I knew she was pretty anxious about going and her stomach would hurt every time she thought about it. This event was a perfect opportunity for her to take a risk and push through her anxiety. I think I started to grow anxious for her wondering if she was going to completely shut down. She didn't and I'm so proud of her for kicking fear in the face!

One of my kiddos has been extra impulsive this week. Frankly I just don't have any answers for what exactly to do with him. Today he talked about his friends and whether or not they understood him. We've watched the movie Megamind and I think he's resonated with how one of the characters felt misunderstood growing up. It's pains me for him to feel that way as his Momma but I also know God has this. I need to read up on some books and even more than that pray like crazy. I know if I ask for help the Lord will be faithful to guide my hubs and I on how to parent this kiddo in a way that would be most loving.

More hard conversations from another kiddo today. My heart grieves over how I've handled things with this kiddo. I know I've made some serious parenting mistakes but with this kid the mistakes have been huge and very well can last a lifetime. I wish I had a time machine or that I could have a do over. Found out more stuff today and I think eventually the complete truth will finally be known. Even if that doesn't happen that's not the ultimate goal. There are so many more things that are most important with this situation. I do just want to yell and scream at the sky for the mistakes that I've made along the way.

The latest Duggar news is totally messing with me too. There's three fears that tend to trip me up most as a parent. I don't sit and dwell on these or anything like that but it's definitely worst case scenario to me.
1. We out live one or more of our children.
2. One of our kiddos gets the c word. More specifically a brain tumor.
3. One of our kids abuses another one of our kids.
The Duggar thing is my worst nightmare so it definitely has me churning hard. Heartbroken about the whole thing and just again reminded about the importance of bringing things into the light. There are so many lessons to be learned from that situation but can't even begin to unpack all of that.

I think overall today is just a good realization that we're still in the middle of a hard season. It's not cancer hard or this past September hard but it's still an uphill battle. In all of it in very much faced with my fallibility. I'm so incredibly sinful and I desperately need Jesus. I simply can't do this without Him. I wish I was always this aware of my need for Him.

Going to hit one chapter of Job then hopefully get some kind of sleep.

D

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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Though He Slay Me, Yet Will I Hope In Him

I think it would probably do me some good to settle into a nice cry under the covers. Emotional this evening. Heard today that play therapy will be ending for one of my kiddos in the next month. At first I was glad to hear that but now as the house is quiet and I can put real actual thoughts together I think the weight of all of it has landed on me. I know shame and guilt still lingers heavy with him and that this journey is not over. Taking him to DCAC every week at least felt pro-active. Now comes the hard part of leaning in and placing his future on the altar and trusting that God has all of this handled. I have to trust that God will give us wisdom and discernment and eyes that see in the upcoming days, weeks, months and years. I hate that this is part of my sweet boy's story. May God redeem what has been hurt and use it for His glory.

Job 11-14:
These are just the uplifting chapters I needed. Actually thankful again for God's perfect timing. I wouldn't have chosen on my own to be in Job tonight or really ever but I know God's timing is perfect.

Definitely sitting in "though he slay me, yet will I hope in him". God has allowed Satan to strip Job of everything. There have been a couple times in my life where it felt as if God had stripped away everything. The first time was due to my own waywardness and God's faithfulness to pursue me. The second time it did indeed feel like punishment. This latest rough season I felt myself asking why a lot at first. There's a lot less whys and more striving to lean in and trust regardless of the reasons. I hope that one day I'll even be able to say "blessed be the name of the Lord" in the midst of the darkest of storms. More seasons of crazy are indeed headed our way. I just pray we can learn to gracefully accept what He has planned for us more and more even in the midst of bruised or broken hearts.

D

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Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Pregnancy Amnesia

Tonight I'm thankful for pregnancy amnesia. Thankful that holding the gift of a new life erases all the trials and tribulations along the way. I am a miserable wretch. Allergies are the icing on my miserable cake. I hate complaining about pregnancy. I know so many would kill to be a miserable wretch and would enjoy every horrible moment. I'm blessed beyond measure!!! I know this and in light of Job I feel like a big fat whiney baby. Whiney brat or not I feel horrible. I'm feel like I'm just slugging out my days in hopes of getting to bed only to find that rest is so very fleeting. The Bit woke up at 4am and crawled all over me for a couple hours so I know on top of everything I just need some dang decent sleep. I know that at least would clear up some of my mental state. A huge dose of vitamin D would help too. Bleh!!!! 

Job 8:
With these verses Bildad pours salt directly into Jobs wounds:
"How long will you go on like this? You sound like a blustering wind. Does God twist justice? Does the Almighty twist what is right? Your children must have sinned against him, so their punishment was well deserved. (‭Job‬ ‭8‬:‭2-4‬ NLT)

My heart breaks for Job. There is no longer those around him willing to just sit faithfully by and weep with those who weep. 

This is what I fear the most:

"Yet when he comes near, I cannot see him. When he moves by, I do not see him go. (‭Job‬ ‭9‬:‭11‬ NLT)

Trying to weather a storm without the Lord beside me sounds like the most horrible pain one could imagine. I can't imagine feeling as if now the Lord were against me. My heart agonizes over all that Job is feeling in these chapters. I too would beg for the mercy of death.

D


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Monday, May 18, 2015

Not A Creature Was Stirring Not Even A Brown

All is quiet in BrownTown and I'm so very thankful. I unfortunately did not enjoy my children much today. Too terribly grumpy to enjoy childish shenanigans. I truly do feel sorry for anyone who has to spend any kind of extended time with me.

I did the math and I've been in a state of grumpy trolldom for 4.5 years of Abbie's life. That's almost half of her life. I'm sure it's an evil ploy tonight to make me feel shame and guilt for the four and a half years my daughter and my other children have had to endure their grumpy hormonal mother. I wish I was the pleasantly pregnant type but I'm simply not. I'm pregnant and pissed and I feel like my kids need to understand that I feel like Godzilla and I could consume them at any moment. God's grace is sufficient in my weakness and my gestating. If anything maybe one day one of my children will write their memoirs and call it "Mother was Pregnant and Pissed But My Siblings Were Amazing".

Job 4-7:
I wanted to get caught up tonight but don't think I can stomach chapter 8 tonight. Job is such an incredibly difficult and painfully humbling book. Really sitting hard and heavy in Eliphaz's words. Eliphaz didn't come to see Job in order to be a jerk. He came to be with a friend who was in much grief and pain. He truly believed his words to be true and words that would help Job in his painful situation. In some situations Eliphaz's words would have been true and words spoken as truth in love. Yet because of his lack of understanding of Job's situation and lack of understanding that even the saints suffer at times his words crushed an already broken heart.

I don't understand what it would be like to be in Job's situation and I don't even want to pretend. I do understand a bit about the additional pain misspoken words can bring in the midst of painful situations. I think they can almost be as painful as the original source of pain. The pain is even more searing when spoken by those who trusted, esteemed and loved.

I don't want to be an Eliphaz to someone who I love. I don't want to be an Eliphaz to anyone. Yet I know I too can be zealous in what I think I know to be true. Lord help me to be quicker to listen and slower to speak. I confess my husband and my children are not the first ones that come to mind as I reflect on that verse and yet I'm convicted that I'm worst at being quick to listen and slow to speak with them. Lord help me as I know in my flesh nothing would give me greater pleasure than to be wise in my own eyes and to spout off truths that I believe to be true. Slow to speak and quick to listen, may that be one of the many things I keep at the forefront of my mind.

D

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Sunday, May 17, 2015

The Road Ahead

It's been so hard for my hubs and I to be motivated to go to church. We decided last night that it was good for our family to be consistent and to push through. I sat next to a precious friend who was weeping from her own current heartaches. I joined her as the music washed over me and I realized just how crazy this season has been. Life is incredibly hard but the Lord has most definitely been teaching me to put my children on the altar and entrust Him with them. It's funny the three that have brought me to my knees the most are the three who did not want to go to their classes today. Each one for their our different reasons and their own different struggles. The newness of the new campus has definitely worn off and reality has set in. There is no magical cure to set all things that have occurred the past 12 to 18 months right again. There is a road ahead that needs to be continued to be walked out every single day. 

I sat and prayed with my youngest of the three today and heard the struggles of his heart. He like me wishes things could just go back to the way they used to be. But they simply can't go back to the way they were. That's not A bad thing but it's hard to explain to a child that spring will indeed break forth again from the long hard winter. It's hard to remember that myself at times. His heart worries about the baby inside of me, that it too will die. I did not confess that the same thoughts have crept into the back of my own mind. I can't make assurances of things I can not promise. I have no idea how long the Lord has granted this baby's life to be nor mine nor the others I love so dearly. So I give thanks for the gift of today and I trust that no matter what tomorrow brings the Lord will continue to see us through. He holds our hearts and our future in His hand. 

Job 3:
Oh sweet Job and the passionate mourning of his soul. It was probably much "easier" for his friends to sit in the intense sorrow and grief with him while he remained quiet. It would be rather difficult to hear one that you love have such deep sorrow and despair. Unfortunately, I understand why Job's friends struggled to sit in it after they heard Job begin to curse the very day that he was born. Who wants their friend or family member to be in that place? If only to have the right words that will bring comfort or soothe the crushed and wounded heart like a balm. 

So much to ponder and think about. Lord help me to sit and listen to those whose hearts have been crushed by the Fall. May I have the courage to just sit and pray and weep with those who weep. 

What I always feared has happened to me. What I dreaded has come true. I have no peace, no quietness. I have no rest; only trouble comes." (‭Job‬ ‭3‬:‭25-26‬ NLT)

I have read some commentary on the verses above but need to dig more. I feel in some ways my fear of the bottom falling out has stayed and yet changed all at the same time. In some ways, my rose colored glasses have been shattered to pieces. I feel as if the Lord is working on my sense of entitlement. Don't get me wrong that struggle runs incredibly deep within me and probably within most of us who have not been blessed by the afflictions of unimaginable pain. Suffering crushes entitlement and a life lived with little entitlement is a life that is truly blessed. I must remember this for myself and for my children. Pain and suffering does bring forth a refinement of character that can be beautiful. I also know pain and suffering can mean a lifetime of walls and isolation created out of self preservation. The only way to fight this is to invite Christ into the suffering. God soften my children's hearts to invite you into their weakness, into their pain and sorrow and into the depths of their suffering. May the sorrow and pain we experience in this world make our hearts more pliable to you rather than hard and bitter. 

I've gotten lost in a jumble of thoughts but going to bed praying for brokenness. My breath catches every time I pray for this knowing that the Lord is faithful to hear the prayers of His children.



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Saturday, May 16, 2015

Number Seven

1. Thankful for a marriage full of laughter. I take the giggles and silliness for granted.

2. Thankful my boy got to be the center of positive attention this weekend. This kid needed to celebrated and I'm thankful for all the huge smiles worn on his face. Can't believe he's seven!!

3. Thankful that even as my babies grow up and get bigger we still have a home with some littles left. The season with littles will pass more quickly than I could ever imagine. 

4. Thankful for every single one of these Brownies. I am richly blessed indeed.

Job 2:
Two big things that stood out.
1. Satan is the Accuser.
One day the members of the heavenly court came again to present themselves before the LORD, and the Accuser, Satan, came with them. (‭Job‬ ‭2‬:‭1‬ NLT)
The voices of shame and guilt come from the Accuser. Conviction that comes from the Lord may sting at first BUT God's desire is never for us to stay wrapped up in shame and guilt. His love motivates us to turn our sin and our weaknesses over to Him so that He can strengthen us to do what is right and good and true restoration and healing can only come from Him. Satan wants to accuse us of all faults, of all our weaknesses, of all our insecurity and sin. There's no deliverance from guilt and shame though. The Accuser wants to keep us trapped under the weight of shame and guilt so that we will stayed focused on ourselves. We continue to hold onto to everything and try to operate out of our own strength. We will never get anywhere for very long with our focus pointed towards ourself. 

2. When in doubt show up and then shut up. 

Then they sat on the ground with him for seven days and nights. No one said a word to Job, for they saw that his suffering was too great for words. (‭Job‬ ‭2‬:‭13‬ NLT)

We all want to be the one who has just the right words to comfort or rather to fix. It is so crazy difficult to see people we love suffer. Yet most often the most loving thing we can do is to just show up and weep with those who weep.  I have so much growing to do in the area of being slow to speak and quick to listen. 

D

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Friday, May 15, 2015

Stinkpots & Sugar

Thankful for my giggling stinkpots who are still up. Fell off my no sweets wagon. It lasted an entire four days. Even then it was so full of processed sugar that I'm not even sure I can count four days with a good conscious. Most definitely an addict. Leftover cookie cake sitting on an abandoned plate was more than I could handle. So lame. 

Can't believe this dude turns 7 tomorrow. This kid made me fall in love with babies. Took two to break me in so I could fully embrace the joy of holding a brand new itty bitty in my arms. Love this silly little stinkpot and so thankful I get to call him my son.


Job 1:
I knew this book was coming and I'll admit I've been dreading it. I've done some major fist shaking and nashing of teeth while reading this book in the past. It will always remind me of such heartache and sorrow and deep questioning of the goodness of God. I know God's timing is so perfect. Job's story strikes fear into my heart and although I can feel empathy it's not somebody I know personally. Today I'm 27ish weeks pregnant and another cute little stinkpot is tenderizing my insides with kicks and punches. I will never forget the precious little boy who was also 27 weeks who met the King of Kings without ever taking a breath this side of heaven. He has changed me forever and God knew I needed to be in Job during that time so I could shake my fist and scream and nash my teeth so that I might know Him more. Thankful that He can handle my doubts and endless questions. Thankful He is willing to walk with me through green pastures as well as the darkest of valleys. He will never leave me nor forsake me. 

These verses challenge me like crazy. Lord help grow my heart to be this devoted to you, in want and in plenty. You are good all the time. Thank you for showing me this more and more. I know there's so much about you I still yet to know but I yearn to know you more and the depth of your amazing love.

Job stood up and tore his robe in grief. Then he shaved his head and fell to the ground to worship. He said, "I came naked from my mother's womb, and I will be naked when I leave. The LORD gave me what I had, and the LORD has taken it away. Praise the name of the LORD!" In all of this, Job did not sin by blaming God. (‭Job‬ ‭1‬:‭20-22‬ NLT)

D


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Thursday, May 14, 2015

Flood

Feels so good to be laying down. Thankful at the moment our bed is free of kid pee. I'm certain one of these days I'm going to wake up in the middle of a yellow flood and it's going to carry me straight out the door. I did wake up in a kid puddle this morning and after yelling MOTHER FATHER from stubbing my toe on a scale one of my kids moved in the middle of our room I slunked off to sleep on the couch. I woke up to the sweet snuggles of children with bed head and was thankful that God has blessed me so richly with this crazy life. It's not glamorous and it's exhausting, messy and insanely loud but it's so incredibly rich. The one year old just threw her sippy cup at my head. Obviously I forgot to mention this gig can be dangerous too.

Moments of absolute chaos mixed in with some pretty sweet moments of peace and calm too. Rough start to my day mainly because having to stay upright was incredibly difficult. Pushed through another day of exhaustion but thankful for the manna that helped us to get through. These days are long but I am thankful for them.

Esther 8-10:
The decree Haman had sent out to destroy the Jews could not be revoked but Mordecai wrote another decree giving the Jews authority to use deadly force to protect themselves. The enemies of the Jews were defeated and the celebration and observance of Purim was ordered by Mordecai and Queen Esther. Mordecai continued to find favor with God and with men and continued to grow in power given to him.

No big thoughts tonight. Thankful for the example of Esther and Mordecai's faithfulness.

D





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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

The Zoo

Today felt pretty wheels off. These kiddos need to be aired out and the rain is making us all a little batty. A weekend outside exploring in the sunshine would have done all of us some good but no use crying over much needed rain.

Blood pressure low once again. I think this might explain my desire to go underground while harboring offspring. Life takes lots of energy that I simply don't possess right now. I'm at a net loss daily. It's worth it but definitely explains lots of things and maybe just maybe will help me to extend myself more grace.

I did have this magical picture in my head of my kids being at home while I give birth and today that flew out the window. They were all over me today and I can totally see them doing the same while I'm pushing out a baby. "Mommy can I swim in the tub with you!?!?" No, thanks. I'll save crazy for another day. We are not the crunchy family with super mellow kids. Our kids could be a wonderful circus act but mellow and chill they are not. Thankful reality stepped in and crushed my Ann Voskamp visions of homebirth with six children under the age of ten as spectators.

Esther 5-7:
This truly is a fabulous story. The twists and turns in the plot are fantastic. I unfortunately can see one of my children's personalities in Haman. I have great hope the Lord will use this child's passion for mighty works if he will choose to pursue JESUS. Haman let his insecurity, pride and Eeyore spirit take him out. He truly seems like a pretty miserable man who comes to a miserable end. Yet, he had been given great opportunity through the position he held. Identity found in anything other than Christ totally takes a great person out!

D

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Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Clocking Out

Thank goodness my knight in shining armor rode in on his white horse from citizens police academy. Most of my minions are still up and I'm clocking out and hiding in my room. It hasn't been a bad day it's just been a long day and I'm over the shenanigans till tomorrow.

Thankful again for the order that has reigned in some of the chaos by a simple schedule. Definitely feel like we are getting more accomplished or rather have had more time for fun. Thankful that they still think going to the library is a magical adventure. For me, it's quite the adventure but I wouldn't necessarily call it magical. 

Overwhelmed by laundry today. I've hit the point of no return and I am certain we will never ever be caught up. Definitely now understand the joy two dryers would bring. There's too many bodies and too many bedwetters to stay on top of it. Generally I'm okay to live in the land of Mt. Laundry but every once in awhile I do yearn to see my couches used for something other than unfolded or half folded laundry. It will happen one day and the irony of that day is that I will once again yearn for the days of exploding sinks and laundry baskets and kid mess strewn through out our house. Well that shift is all I needed. Thank you Lord for the exploding things around my house that will indeed someday go away. May I not loose sight of how truly quickly this season of life will come and go. We are but a vapor, help us to be good stewards of the days you have placed before us. 

This baby Chupacabra still kicking it at almost 11pm. 


Esther 3-4:
Read commentary tonight spurred on by a friend's love of Esther. I really love this quote by Spurgeon. 

. "You have been wishing for another position where you could do something for Jesus: do not wish anything of the kind, but serve him where you are." (Spurgeon)

I get this Mordecai. Stubborn, bold and strong willed. However, I wonder if Esther would have even needed to be written had he been more humble like Daniel. I don't know all the reasons why Mordy chose to not show respect to Haman and bow to him. Regardless he had a strong grasp of how powerful the God he served was. Esther although intimidated at the prospect of going before the king uninvited steps up to the plate boldly also showing her own faith. This might be the first time I caught that Purim is on my oldest son's Bday.

D
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Monday, May 11, 2015

Monday Monday

Thankful today wasn't just another Manic Monday. I slunk off to my daughter's bed last night as there was no room in the inn for me last night. It was fun to wake up to a whole new perspective in our home. I heard the pitter patter of two wild things first who were rooting around in their sisters' room and who laughed about Mommy being in bed there. Next came two sweet little girls who wanted to snuggle. The sun woke we as it streams into the window early in the morning. My heart was so full this morning and I'm so thankful to wake up with fresh perspective.

Cranked out a schedule and chore chart for our summer to start bringing more order to our days. It did just that. Our home is not perfect by any stretch of the imagination but the common areas apart from a sink full of dishes is mostly picked up. Not perfect but not chaos either. As much as I try to resist a set schedule I think we need it to function as a family. There is just too many of us and I'm not orderly enough on my own. Now the challenge will be to see if I can stick with it.

Already thinking through our schedule for Fall as well. I need to adjust how I do school as I'll now have four kiddos who are going to need me to work with them. In order to keep me from going insane I need to schedule out blocks of time when they can have my undivided attention and help while another is "working" with the littles. So thankful for this crazy crew.

Thankful for time outside today with some sun and friends. Outside did the kids and myself good. Bummed about all the rain and another camping trip having to be erased off the books. However, when I can look past myself I'm so thankful for this much needed rain!! Our little salsa garden is loving it and it will be nice to have a nice green lawn this summer. Green is a very happy color.

Esther 1-2:
Hard to read these chapters. Hate how women could be treated as property. Hope that the women chosen to go before King Xerxes were excited to go and it was some magical Disney dream Come true even if not chosen to be the Queen. Unfortunately, it feels like a situation even worse than the Bachelor but without a say from the women involved. Yet even during this crazy chaos God was at work behind the scenes.

D

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Sunday, May 10, 2015

Grand Multipara

Feel incredibly blessed to be a grand multipara today. I'm so glad God's ways are not my own and He changed this heart of mine. Thankful for the six diverse personalities He placed in our home and for the many ways God uses those personalities to sharpen me and draw me unto Himself. I'm crazy blessed.

Thankful for a hubs who helped bring some order to the chaos of our house and whose mission was to let me rest all day. Glad a stomach bug yesterday kept us from braving a torrential rain fall to get to church.

Lots going on in my head as my hubs and I had a quick in home date and we discussed our kiddos and where they are at and how we are doing at loving them well. Thankful God is right there by our side to help navigate the waters of parenthood. They each need to be parented in such different ways and I know I fall short on a daily basis. Thankful that His grace abounds!

Finished out Nehemiah. Not necessarily an upbeat read. Struggled through the details and then it was difficult to read how the Israelites once again started to return to their vomit. I know I too can be like that dog who returns to their own vomit.

D

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Not For The Faint of Heart

Interesting day. Things kicked off today with a kiddo puking at the table during breakfast. That of course got one of my kiddo's in particular super upset and the day long spiral of fear and anxiety kicked off in high gear. I confess I did not handle it the best this morning and I really handled it poorly this afternoon. I instantly knew the words that came from my mouth were awful and immediately sought forgiveness. Hate how incredibly selfish I can be.

Starting to feel a bit helpless with this kiddo. A good thing that happened this afternoon is I got a fuller picture of how anxiety is reaping havoc. Unfortunately, I think it's starting to escalate to a point that is starting to sound like the beginnings of small panic attacks. This crushes me for this child. This crushes me for anyone. I am thankful to report that my kiddo reluctantly kicked fear in the face and got to have a lot of fun this evening because of it. I do feel lost on what to do to help this kiddo. Praying to have answers on what our action should be to love this sweet kiddo well. We will pray hard and fight hard so that anxiety and fear will not have victory over this child.

Spent and evening with the Duggar's. Really enjoyed their talk and overall thankful to discover first hand that they are the real deal. There definitely is some cornball and I'm mulling over the secular music smashing of Jim Bob's earlier days but love their hearts and their family is sweet. I found it interesting how God lead Michelle through the 12 steps very organically. I doubt she would even know that's what she did. Overall thankful for special time with one of my kiddo's and an evening with the Duggar's.

I am truly pondering the tape smashing thing more than I normally would. I'm generally turned off by such extreme practices. I think Christians can be known more for the silly things they are against than for the JESUS they follow. However, in the OT God specifically laid out laws so that His people would be set apart from the pagan nations surrounding them. The words of Paul come to mind about all things are permissible are not everything is profitable. More pondering on this but yet again it's insanely late.

Neh 9.

D



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Friday, May 08, 2015

Infected

Took my ear getting to new levels of pain for me to call uncle and go to the dr today. Thankful somebody finally gave me a compelling enough reason to truly work hard to get a handle on these Dallergies. This will probably include cutting out sugar, gluten and dairy. Boo! Giving those things up is not nearly as difficult as trying to figure out how to be prepared enough to eat that way. The amount of pizza this family has been living on is pretty crazy. Need to start praying it up and then take ACTION.

Read this morning while waiting in the dr's office. Nehemiah read the people the Book of the Law of Moses and much wailing and nashing of teeth ensued. Nehemiah and the leaders urged the people to stop mourning but turn their sadness into joy and celebrate. They once walked in darkness but now were children willing to walk in truth and light.

Been sitting here mulling over how this truly kicks shame and guilt to the curb. Be sorrowful and truly repentant and turn away from sin but press on towards the prize. Rejoice over spiritual blindness being healed and sweet redemption. Feel like I'm taking some ground here but shame and guilt still is a beast I must fight continually. If I am not able to embrace the sweetness of grace and forgiveness how can I possibly extend it to others?

D



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Thursday, May 07, 2015

Let God Love

I wrote this in my head earlier and I'm so sad it didn't happen in real life. Fast bullet points with hopefully my long winded version tomorrow.

1. Woke up insanely weary. Raging ear infection I think was the straw that broke this camels back. It's so bad I'm headed to the dr first thing tomorrow. That says a lot for me.

2. Thankful for God's sweet timing of provision today in a trip to Arlington for the free evening at Denim Smock Fest. I even saw some Duggar kids.

3. Heard Steve Demme speak and it was encouraging. His big take away was "the best thing we can do as parents is to understand the full depths of God's love for us". He pulled a bait and switch by asking people if they thought God loved them and the the person next to them. Then he sucker punched most everybody in the room by asking if they thought God liked them. In order to love our kids extravagantly we have to understand God's vast love for us. We love because He first loved us. So much more but that's the beginning.

4. Thankful for time by a pond to read and talk to God. Drive to Arlington was also a great time of prayer. Crazy thankful for time with my Daddy.

5. Still very much churning on the idea of praying and then acting. It really feels like the perfect balance against hyper spiritual laziness and self righteous self sufficiency. Loved reading today about how when Nehemiah was angry about the way the upper crust was treating the poor he stopped and pondered the situation and then he acted. He was righteously angry for the treatment of the people and yet he didn't react to the situation he took time to think about it and then he responded in truth and love. Nehemiah is a deep feeler and yet he doesn't get swept away by his emotions. He possesses self control which them harnesses his passion for the Lord.

D

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Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Phone Call

Got a phone call early this morning from J's neurologist. I had it in my head that news early on would not be good and the longer it took to hear something the better the news. With those expectations, my heart sank with an early phone call this morning. Thankful however to report that J's MRI came back normal.

My heart is changing. As horrible as an MRI with something on it would have in thankful to rejoice that this is not part of my son's story yet also be confident in God's gracious provision if things had been different. He is good all the time.

Been cussing like a sailor lately. Generally this has been an indicator of where my heart is with the Lord. I really feel like I'm in a good spot with God so it's been hard to figure what's up. It hit tonight that it's exhaustion that has my flesh so close to the surface.  Insomnia and restless sleep has left me deeply and pervasively exhausted. The weariness of exhaustion has made the days more difficult than they should be. I'm not exactly sure what to do about this other than start sleeping till 12 every morning or taking a shot at Ambien. I do think I would have a fabulous love affair with Ambien. With my luck though I'd be in the percentage of people who do crazy things while on it. I'd rather not find out how much I love prescription sleep medication. Till this season passes grace must abound and naps must be plentiful.

Feeling very much like we are still thick in a season full of unknowns. Yet feel content to be where we are. The waters will once again smooth and there will be new seasons filled with new waves of storms that will cross our paths again. For today I give thanks for the peace of knowing that the God who can command the  storms to be silent and still is with me, is with us through it all. We will fight hard to remember that we need not fear for the Lord goes before us and behind us.

Nehemiah 3-4:
I generally am not a big fan of details and yet I really love this list of names and the parts of the gate they were fixing. It took many people working together as the body of Christ to accomplish the goal of rebuilding the gate. Things start off going well. People even built enthusiastically.

At last the wall was completed to half its height around the entire city, for the people had worked with enthusiasm. (‭Nehemiah‬ ‭4‬:‭6‬ NLT)

Then opposition and discouragement sets in. Yet Nehemiah turns to the Lord. He prays and then he acts. Such a simple formula but a very affective one! Pray AND act in that order. 

The picture of working and standing guard is impactful to me. There will be seasons of keeping guard. They trusted that God would fight for them and yet the stood guard while they worked. This imagine combined with this verse has been churning tonight.

Then as I looked over the situation, I called together the nobles and the rest of the people and said to them, "Don't be afraid of the enemy! Remember the Lord, who is great and glorious, and fight for your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes!" (‭Nehemiah‬ ‭4‬:‭14‬ NLT)

My hubs pulled some really great stuff out so far about building the wall to protect ourselves and not letting things in that would hinder us or throw us off from our mission of following Christ. That combined with the image of being on guard constantly and fighting for your family is sitting heavy tonight. 

D



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Tuesday, May 05, 2015

Long December

Long December by Counting Crows has been stuck in my head for what seems like weeks maybe months. 
"A long December and there's reason to believe maybe this year will be better than the last."
The days are long and yet fly by so incredibly quickly that I'm humbled how quickly we will all fade like the flowers of the field. Lord may we choose wisely what to invest in while we are given the gift of today. 

On the drive to the Pediatric Imaging place with a nervous kiddo I realized the crushing weight that our fallen world can sow so much fear into our hearts. Yet perfect love desires to cast out all fear. We are beckoned to rise to the call to be strong and courageous to not be bound by the fear of our circumstances. He hems us in from the front and from behind. Do not fear for I am with you. Do not worry about tomorrow for today has enough troubles of its own. The Lord is not bound by what we can see and understand. His ways are not ours and He is mighty to save. This "do not fear" theme has been a resounding beat through my time in the Old Testament this year. Be humble. Be courageous.  

The never sleep twins are in my bed watching Flowers and the images always cause my heart to long for heaven. The thought of being in the presence of His unhindered beauty and glory apart from the sin and death of this world makes my heart want to be home now! Till then may I be faithful to what God places in front of me day after day.

Got tests results back for one of my kiddos this weekend. After looking through the results definitely moved to continue further testing. Been praying for wisdom and discernment and feel like I've gotten the answers I needed and going to proceed with testing at Scottish Rite. I've seen more discouragement from my kiddo and I really want to equip him so he can succeed at being the boy God created him to be. Learning should be fun and at times a challenge but not a discouraging whip. I casually went through letters today and it was fascinating to me how he has memorized letter sounds. He has put a picture to each letter and from the picture in his head he sounds out the word and then knows the sound of the letter. This might be kid typical but it's stinking genius to me. He has a hard time deciphering between the letters that look similar but I think that's pretty typical. Overall I think this kid is super smart and I want to keep fighting to bust down any barriers that would hinder him from learning about this amazing world God has created. 

Nehemiah 1-2:
Love the model Nehemiah gives for prayer. He hears about adversity and instantly he fasts and prays. He doesn't fret or have false compassion he goes straight to God to ask for wisdom on what HE could do. The task or the problem could have seemed overwhelming or like something completely out of his ability to help yet he was faithful to pray how he might be part of the solution. One humble heart, one simple request and mighty results. My bible is all marked up with thoughts about today but need to get my buns to bed pronto!

D

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Monday, May 04, 2015

No Guarantees

Some brave kiddos getting dental work done today. My more anxious child woke up with stomach pains. Thankful for God's sweetness in giving me eyes to see my kids and knowing ahead of time that this was coming. Thankful this kiddo chose to turn to prayer in moments of fear and distress. I know this isn't always the first thing to turn to for any of us so I thank God today for this victory.

Thankful to have much peace about tomorrow's MRI for my baby boy. I'm expecting nothing out of the ordinary and neither is the doctor. Thankful to be able to take captive the thoughts of "what if" and not be rocked. Big change from the end of the summer when I begged God to make the what ifs go away. The sacred cows I've held onto have been released, at least for the time being. They are His and so am I. He has all of us in His mighty right hand.

-------
Ezra 7-10:
The timeline of Ezra and my lack of better historical knowledge has me all whack on the timeline of Ezra. Love his passion for God's Word and for carrying out. Dude was humble. So much more but so very very exhausted.

D

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Sunday, May 03, 2015

Vitamin D Euphoria

Really fun day playing all day long. We so needed a day like this together as a family. Baptism was fun and felt a lot less chaotic than it does at the Mother Ship. Still miss the good ole days of baptism at a park or in our Portland and Austin days baptism on somebody's amazing property. Baptism day is amazing no matter what though. I was baptized in a hot tub in an ugly church. I could have cared less where I got baptized I was just excited about my new life in Christ.

Left baptism to go on an adventure to $5 and below and although we didn't score any bike helmets we did score a basketball and a kite that helped spur us on to hit the park.

The park was fantastic! Loved watching the simple joy of one of my kiddos fly a kite. As a total bonus there were a ton of free kites at the park so the solo kite in the air turned into many kites. We returned home with sun kissed cheeks and full tanks. The merriment continued as my beloved kept making me laugh so hard it hurt. So crazy thankful for such a lighthearted, no agenda planned, amazing day! Hopefully our vitamin D euphoria will last us through a week full of rain.

Sunhausted so going to wrap this up. Ezra 6-8 tonight. Things are going well for the Temple rebuilt but then discouragement comes head first towards the remnants rebuild of the Temple. Operations seem to be shut down and out of commission. Yet some brace prophets encourage the remnant to keep building and support from King Darius helps make it possible for the Israelites to finish the work they started. Again pretty amazing how God provides for them in the middle of a time that had to be so incredibly discouraging.

For seven days they celebrated with joy the Festival of Unleavened Bread, because the Lord had filled them with joy by changing the attitude of the king of Assyria so that he assisted them in the work on the house of God, the God of Israel. (‭Ezra‬ ‭6‬:‭22‬ NIV)

D

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Saturday, May 02, 2015

Stay

1. Thankful for a beautiful day today. Lots of rainy days ahead so today was quite the gift.

2. Loved being out in my hood today. There's definitely an interesting mix of people. Fun to discover the ends of the street where we don't know people as well neighbors are watching out for one another. It was also funny to hear how many people think we run a daycare. Good times!

3. Love that we are finally having some success at gardening. No blooms on most of our plants except for our strawberries but I'm so incredibly fired up!! Maybe there's hope for us as gardeners after all!!

4. I love our Pine Cove Toads. I had no clue how much joy I would get out of owning an amphibian.

5. I feel strange knowing that belting out Stay by Lisa Loeb every time it's heard is NOT a girl thing but rather a me thing. I was convinced that song was somewhat equivalent to what the song Let It Go will someday be for my biggest girls when they get older. Maybe I'm the only one who has to contain herself when 4 Nonblondes What's Going On comes on as well.

"So I turn the radio on I turn the radio up and this woman was singing my song..." Seriously sad about this.

6. I need to wrap this up like a Chipotle burrito. In home date night.

Ezra 3:
Read Ch 1&2 yesterday and might get caught up later tonight. Love how God orchestrated all of this. Who would have ever thought the Lord would stir in the heart of the King of another country to help prepare the way for the remnant to return and provision for the Temple to be restored. This really floors me!! This is just how good our God is!!

Favorite verse of Ch 3:
Despite their fear of the peoples around them, they built the altar on its foundation and sacrificed burnt offerings on it to the Lord, both the morning and evening sacrifices. (‭Ezra‬ ‭3‬:‭3‬ NIV)

Love when people punch fear in the face in order to be obedient.

D

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Friday, May 01, 2015

Humility

Uneventful day. Although some would say going to IKEA with six offspring is quite the adventure. Got the joy of having a baby fall asleep on my chest tonight. Truly believe that is one of the greatest experiences here on earth. This particular baby was extra fun to hold now that she is officially adopted. Thankful for brave birth Momma's tonight who chose the road les traveled.

Finished 2 Chronicles tonight. Was going to head straight into Ezra but got distracted by other things. Hard to curb the evil beast of sarcasm that is raging within me right now. Oh how my flesh longs to be Liz Lemon.

The theme that has really resonated with me and punched me in the gut is how the Lord responds to a humbled heart. The consequences of pride even in the hearts of the righteous can be devastating. I need to be reminded of this every single day often hour by hour. I really think my pride is the biggest obstacle to the Lord in my life. Moses, the most humble man, talked with God face to face. Seriously, how amazing would that be!?! I long to have ears that hear and eyes that see and it is pride that keeps me deaf and blind. I hate it and I wish I could cut it out myself. This of course only points to my self reliant pride. Oh the irony!

My prayer for tonight is that the Lord in His great mercy would do the painful heart surgery of eradicating pride in my heart. I pray my children who unfortunately have also been given a nice healthy dose of pride would chose humility and choose to walk in His ways. May He break us so that we might turn to Him in everything that we do giving all the glory and honor to Him. May we serve without chasing after identity or recognition here on this earth. May we serve so that others may increase more. May we truly think of others as better than ourselves. May we not loose sight of the fact that we are but dust. The only reason we have anything at all is because the Lord has allowed it. God let me not forget who I am so that I might not forget who you are.

D

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