Sunday, April 12, 2015

Sunday Morning Musings: Early Morning Comfort

I value authenticity in a writer.  I bring as much of it to this blog as I can.  But, as others have said, our lives intersect with many others and often the deep, core things in our lives should not be shared publicly out of respect for the other people involved.
And yet there is this longing to share and connect, especially in the bleary hours of the night, when circumstances and fears press us from sleep and we abandon our beds in search of, if not comfort, at least distraction.
I rose around four yesterday morning, after hours of pretending sleep was just about to descend on me - like that sneeze that you feel coming but hasn't quite burst out yet.  I was worn and distinctly un-hopeful.  As I realized defeated was my main emotion, I started asking myself, but. . . am I?
Because the truth is that a daughter of the King does not live in defeat, that defeat can only be real if there remains no hope.  But. I. have. hope.  Often we believe the lie that we are defeated, when Jesus reminds us we are more than conquerors.  More than conquerors!

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And Jesus whispers again, your emptiness and my abundance are a perfect match.  This past Lent of stuffing myself full of scripture rewards me as I putter around my kitchen, making tea and listening to the verses swirling in my head.  Let not your heart be fearful or troubled (John 14:27).  In Me is life and this life is the light of all (John 1:4).  More.  And fragments of song: I am pressed but crushed; persecuted not abandoned; struck down but not destroyed.


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Despite the weight of whatever's pressing in on me, on you, we are not destroyed.  When we call to him, he answers in love and care. I am not defeated and there is hope and audacious joy.

To find joy in this day, you must live within its boundaries. Do not worry about tomorrow, or get stuck in the past. There is abundant life in my presence today.

Monday, March 30, 2015

lent as an anchor


Lent.  A period of repentance and renewal.  A time of anchoring ourselves in our faith - in the age-old pattern of emptying ourselves of, well. . . ourselves, and filling back up with Jesus.  By choosing to take a new expectation upon ourselves (either by giving up, or adding in), we place Someone else higher than ourselves.  We remember that we are dust, and to dust we shall return.


Lent isn’t about forfeiting as much as it’s about formation.
We renounce to be reborn; we let go to become ‘little Christs’. It’s about this: We break away to become.”
For Lent this year, I've (tried) to give up scrolling aimlessly through Facebook and Pinterest.  In it's place, I took on a challenge to read with my family through the Gospels in 40 days.  With Easter right around the corner, we are now about halfway through Luke, so we will likely not finish until late April.  But that's just fine.  This time of focus has been lovely for drawing my family in together and, for myself, clarifying what was missing from last year. . . an anchor of any kind.



Saturday, March 14, 2015

2015 - Anchor

We are still in the first half of the year, so I can still write a New Year goal type post, right?

Dear Blog, I have missed you!  Oh sure, I wrote a few half-posts, full of nonsense and bad grammar, but I found myself unable to write anything worth sharing for months.  A wave of change swept over my family and I sort of went under for a while.  Look, I made a flow chart (with misspellings) to help me understand my messed-up self.


Thursday, November 13, 2014

Birthday joy



Birthdays always make me reflective.  Yesterday was my birthday and I thought a lot about a post I wrote two years ago, describing how my family gave me the stomach flu for my birthday and the odd sort of joy I found in the day:

I was sitting cozily on the couch, finishing up The Return of the King, when my family burst in the door.  Ava headed straight for the bathroom. . . I'll shorten the story and just say that the puking continued through the night and into the better part of the morning (and later it was my turn). . .

Saturday, October 4, 2014

A Birth Story of Sorts (Part 2)



Part two of our foster care story.  Go here for part one.

I listened to a podcast recently in which Phil Vischer (creator of Veggie Tales and What's in the Bible) interviewed Todd Komarnicki, who is a writer, director, and producer, and produced the familiar movie Elf, among other projects.  It's a longish podcast: enjoyable but sort of rambly (my kind of show!).  The last fifteen minutes, however, are pure gold, and Komarnicki's comments speak directly to this story that I'm telling:

If [your desire is] what God wants you to do, then go do it and you'll find out.  Just move in the direction of your prayer and your dreams.  It doesn't mean that it will work out, but it means if you're doing it then other things will work out. . .This is the key to everything, in my opinion.  You plant corn, you'll get wheat.  If you plant an apple tree in the front, you'll get a lemon tree in the back.  Nothing in my life has gone according to plan. . .  but every time I've farmed, every time I've planted, it's been rewarded.  Something else has grown up always.  Now, if I hadn't planted, I'd have two empty fields.  And I didn't get what I wanted, but hopefully, by living by grace and focusing on God's will, I got what he wanted.  And now, at 46, I don't want anything except what he wants.  I have no desire for anything outside of his will. . .and the process is beautiful.

As I shared in my previous post, I was certain God was leading our family to foster care, but could not see how it could happen.

A Birth Story of Sorts (Part 1)

Next week, we will be welcoming a sixteen year old girl into our family.  For real.  Remember that post at the beginning of the year, where I looked ahead to a year likely full of the same old same old?

b

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Books to Consider: September 2014


And now for our semi-regular/completely random series: Books to Consider.
Books to Consider series note: To avoid spoilers and make these reviews unique, I will include a short comment about each book, and one or seven of my favorite quotes from the book.

I'm only including two books this time, because I loved these particular two so much that I included way too many quotes and my blog post runneth over.


Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Fall Art: Pastel Pumpkins and Apples (OiLs)

What's Back-to-School time without an apple craft??



He wasn't as melancholy as he looks!

Today we squeezed in some art time.  In the morning.  Before math (gasp).
We classical Christian educators know in our bones how vital the arts are to producing real humans and to drawing us ever back to our Creator. . .and yet. . . art is hard for homeschool moms!  It takes up so much time, makes a mess, and what do you do with the baby while your hands are covered in glitter glue?  (I personally have zero tolerance for glitter glue.)  Here's my soapbox reminder: It's worth it, parents.  But it won't happen if you leave art time for the end of the day, after all the "real school" is finished.

Ava, age 7

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