Sunday, August 30, 2015

What My Heart Sings... "Beyond Me"

Our conversation left me uneasy...

I don't like this
I don't want this
I am not made for this

and then it dawned on me that I was wrong...

this is exactly what I was made for

to serve Him
to trust Him
to give Him

complete control over my life
because this life is beyond me

but

He knows all
He has plans
He does things

in ways that I would not necessarily choose
and sometimes that is what scares me most

 because

I would rather live the

easy
light
carefree

kind of life
(if that even exists)

I would rather do the things that come

naturally
easily

and without any sort of

toil
worry
burden

I would rather have one of those

"I-didn't-even-know-that-I-was-pregnant" smooth labor delivery stories
(if those are even real)

Then as we sat remembering...

our pregnancies
our pains
our past

we began to laugh

and I secretly marveled at how

what once felt like could kill us is actually funny to us now
(how is this funny to us now?)

but as

we sat
we laughed

with joy

as we relived

the uncomfortable
the unpleasant
the uneasy

and I realized that life is just like that

There is really no such thing as "smooth labor"
(its an oxymoron, really)

because by very nature the term labor indicates something difficult
and so when you are attempting to birth something

it will not be easy

Then as I got in my car to leave, this song was playing...



and I wondered

how he could have known
how he could have penned it so perfectly

because I am coming to understand that

pregnancy
labor
childbirth

and life

can all seem to be painful experiences that

stretch us
mature us
grow us

and fill us

with uncertainty...
and hope

but

this is exactly what I was made for

even if
even when

it seems to be
way beyond me

Friday, August 21, 2015

Find A Way


I've heard it said that...

If you really want something, you'll find a way, and 
If you don't, you'll find an excuse

And Jesus clearly

told us
showed us

by dying
rising again
sending back His Holy Spirit

the promise
and Power

for which all we need to do is

seek
ask
receive

And yet...

we don't seek
we don't ask
we get distracted
we try to do it on our own

get lost

and don't even try to find

The Way

(sharing this today)

Monday, August 17, 2015

Let Him Flood Your House... (One Year Later)

I kneel here daily to pray



and as I speak to Him
I find peace in the place that once offered only panic

But this time?  Today?

He speaks back

and says

open your eyes
look up
remember


And as I do, I am aware that it has been almost one year

in this very spot
where I am

kneeling
praying

that my ceiling landed on the floor

And it's almost as if I can feel Him saying...

Yes, that was hard, but look up.
You have things now that you didn't have then

And I open my eyes to see

fresh paint
recessed lighting
a new ceiling fan

and soggy carpet that has been replaced
with hardwood supporting my full weight

as I worship here on my knees

Then once again my house begins to flood
(only this time with tears)

because you can only know Him like this

if a house floods...
when a house floods...

So, my dear friends, I want to encourage you to please

Let Him flood your house

because yes
you will

worry
cry
question

wonder and experience
the most vulnerable moments of your life

you will come to know

both calamity and comfort
fear and faith

and perhaps you may even panic
(right before you remember to praise)

But then, and only then, can you look up to discover...

that the things you have now are

even better
much better
way better

than the things that you had then

(sharing this today)

Friday, August 14, 2015

On The Quest To "Cure" Boredom... Let's Learn To Sew



I came out of the store...

smiling
quickly got in the car
and immediately pulled out my purchase

My husband looked over at me as he backed out of the parking space and asked...

"What is that?"


"Fabric remnants... your daughter wants to learn how to sew"

and I was excited because
I also learned how to sew by making doll clothes

a skill that has come in handy
a skill that I want to cultivate again
a skill that I want to teach BOTH of my children

(because I believe that boys should learn to sew too)

and I know that...

the best way to learn something new
is to attach it to something you love...
_____________________________

(Five Minutes is up... you'll have to come back later to see what we make)

Friday, August 7, 2015

You Are Always Right... Here

I put my hand over my heart and sang along until tears streamed down
 
"You are welcome here..."
 
because when I was young
and vulnerable
 
I was told that all I needed to do was
 
open the door
ask you to come in
allow you to come in
 
and she was right
they were right
You were right
 
there...
 
And now many years have past and
 
we have history
we have memories
we have relationship
 
and so I smile as I sing along this Five-minute Friday
with my hand over my heart and tears streaming down
 
because You have done it again

proved
with

a sermon
a Scripture
a song

that You are always right...

here
___________________________________________
 
Holy Spirit
by Francesca Battistelli
 
Holy Spirit you are welcome here
Come flood this place and fill the atmosphere
Your glory God is what our hearts long for
To be overcome by your presence Lord
 



Wednesday, August 5, 2015

On The Quest To "Cure" Boredom... Going To The Beach

The kids are not the only ones...


enjoying
learning
experiencing

new things this summer

because this week we took a trip to the beach with the entire family


 

And although I have always lived in Southern CA
I have not always had an appreciation for the beach

the seaweed
the sand
the sea

are just not necessarily my favorites

but I went
and watched
and wondered

about how

Jesus calmed the sea
walked on water
met his followers

right there on a beach

And I had no idea...

that He had plans to also meet me right there on that beach
until my daughter showed me


as she

studied
examined
collected

and returned back to my side, smiling, and holding a bucket full of sand and shells


And I should have known...

that Jesus loves the beach
walking on water
speaking to the wind and waves

(and to me)

because I watched

as she took her shovel
held down her shells
and poured out the sandy water

And when I saw it, I looked up at her and smiled
and she smiled back

(although I'm not even sure she realized what she had just shown me)

because

in
that
moment

I finally realized that life is messy

We all have

water
sand
seaweed

and shells

all mixed together in our buckets

but the only way to fully

enjoy
appreciate
love your treasure

is if you are willing

to stop
to sort
to separate

your sand from
your shells
 
(click to continue on the quest to "cure" boredom)

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Just Try... A Lesson From a Stranger

This Five Minute Friday shout out is to James
from Bella Gelateria in Vancouver
for his reminder to... "Just Try"

___________________________

We met him on vacation
and he captivated us right away

Ever met someone like that?

Someone with whom you feel completely

content
comfortable
familiar

And the irony is that although we had waited

in line
outside
for over 30 min

just for an opportunity

to experience
to taste

his internationally award winning gelato

he made us feel like celebrities

While...

gold medals
honors
news paper clippings on the wall

(proved that he was the best)

tasting his gelato and actually meeting him

(proved why)

Because just as we were leaving...

he pulled up right beside the crowd
and began manually unloading his own truck and

he saw us
he noticed
he stopped

to

thank us
talk with us
encourage us


And maybe he felt it too...

that we were

content
comfortable
familiar

because he invited us in
showed the kids how to make gelato

and told them

stories
secrets
successes

that reminded us to

"slow down"
"love what you do"
"embrace failure"

then "try again"

because as he simply put it...

Most people in life are afraid to fail, so they never try
which means... they have failed already