July 2009


I meet her in front of her closet, wearing a purple long-sleeved shirt over another pink striped long-sleeved shirt. This proves to be too bulky, and her arms have uncomfortable looking lumps down their length. Her jeans are pulled snugly up over her multi-colored tights. She is reaching on her toes, stretching her two-year-old arm to reach her hanging yellow dress. This addition will officially make her outfit too much. For me.

It is agony for me to let her dress herself. Tya looks adorable whatever she wears, but there is an unknown force within me that still grasps to control the process. She deliberates and takes such meticulous time and care into her ensembles. She sees her wardrobe options as art exploration and expression.

‘Tya,’ I try to reason, ‘you don’t need a dress over your shirts and pants.’ She keeps reaching. ‘No Tya, you have enough clothes on already.’

She couldn’t have heard me, too focused, because she asks me earnestly, ‘Can you get my yellow dress for me?’

‘Tya, no.’ Persuasion increasing. ‘We need to get ready, and you have too many clothes on already,’ I repeat.

Decision final. Done.

She looks up at me, her blue eyes searching mine. She speaks- not as pleading, but as whispered truth. Soft and direct honesty, offering a portion of her soul into my very hands:

‘But I want the yellow dress so I can look more pretty Mama.’

I am mute. Undone.

‘Ohhh Tya. You are the most pretty girl ever to Mommy. Of course you can wear the yellow dress. I am sorry, I didn’t know how important the yellow dress was to you.’

I carefully lift her priceless treasure off the hanger and gently, sacredly, place it onto my treasure. I bend slowly to meet her. The dress hem catches as I pull it over the shirts, over the jeans, over the multi-colored tights. I linger over each item, lengthening the moment. Finally finished, I admire her creation. She glitters, she dazzles me. She is a masterpiece.

Heart swelling emotions, I whisper and encourage her, ‘Go show Daddy how beautiful you look in your pretty dress.’ She lights at the thought and scampers out the door, gracefully in her bulky attire. I can hear her squeal as she searches for greater praise, knowing where it can be found.
 

I stand and steady myself from the whirl of the encounter. Awed by the power she has over me. Awed by the power of my love for her. Can it be that she can change my heart so instantly? So entirely? I step to exit her room, lingering in the frame…

My mind floods with the stories, memory-seared since my own childhood. I think of the widow pleading for justice, who is listened to because of her persistence. I think of Abraham, who is allowed to bargain with God to save Sodom if only 50, 45, 40, 30, 20, even 10 righteous can be found. And God changes, because of Love for His child. Can it be?

Can God’s heart be changed just as completely by His love for me? His heart changed…by me?!

I am dizzy, disoriented contemplating this Divine Love. In haze I step forward into the empty, echoing hall. My leg lengthens, seeking equilibrium. The realization of this Divine Love seeps through as marrow, bringing life to these dry bones. Searching for an anchor in such lopsided Love, He draws me; Love-Words reflecting off the close walls, entering into, convincing my heart:

‘…you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ…’ Ephesians 3:18

What kind of Love is this Father?  

No, I cannot grasp; still, I embrace it.

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holy experience

Tammy drew my attention to Holy Experience (which I only sometimes read) and to the Wednesdays where she is focusing on reading the word.

She asks…how do you read the word? She invites comments.

What about us, here…how do you read the word? What are some of your ideas? What works for you? Where has your well been dry lately? What do you need to be encouraged? Please, if you are willing to…share your ideas and thoughts in our comments.

For me…it is so often about relationships or community. Matt and I try to follow a reading plan (and I do say TRY) that we purchased at Breakforth. He likes to do his reading in the morning and I like to do mine at night…but when we’ve read the same thing in the day, it brings forth natural conversation about what God was brewing in us through it.

Tonight I started a journal for the times I do, do readings and I am partly thinking of giving it to Eden when she is older. This is inspiring me to read and reflect on God’s word, hoping that one day she will treasure my thoughts on what God is stirring in my life.

Sometimes I am overwhelmed with a hard day with two kids or a fight with Matt or just pure lack of desire to read. Sometimes I have a lot of things to do around the house and just can’t don’t find the time to dig into God’s words.

Sometimes I feel sucky at this, other times I feel so entranced by the lover of my soul that I can’t wait to sit down and hear his voice.  Other times I just do it because I should do it and hope something good comes out of it.

What about you?

Tonight I read this and felt encouraged… “Be strong and courageous! Don’t be afraid or discouraged because of the King of Assyria or his mighty army, for there is a power far greater on our side! He may have a great army, but they are merely men. We have the Lord our God to help us fight our battles for us! Hezekiah’s words greatly encouraged the people.” 2 Chron 32:7-8

I am encouraged to press on to pray, to read, to move forward… for there is a power far greater on our side.

 

june 2009 049It’s the morning after a busy weekend. Needless to say she’s still a little tired from the nights rest and thus a little emotional. Her pouty face tells all. Her words are short. Her feet are heavy, she’s upset. Those aren’t my favourite moments. It takes patience to work through these moments with a two year old. But I understand because I too have moments like this.

She comes to my side, she asks for a story.  Wrapped in my arms, with a great story enfolding on our laps, my tender voice whispers sweet words of love, adventure, and new possibilities. We both soak in the moment.  We are both calmed as the emotions of the morning slip away. Grace, love, peace, rest remain.

May you find some time this summer to sit at your father’s side, with His story, Your story, on your lap. Take in the whispers of God. Enjoy. And know you are loved.

Those of you who are with us for  Memory Monday we want to let you know that we are taking a break for the rest of July and into August. We’ve worked on some wonderful passages and maybe you’d like to revisit those or find some on your own. May God’s words surround you in love this summer.

You could also check out Holy Experience, on Wednesdays, Ann is featuring a Walk with Him post. I’ve found her writings edifying, maybe you will too.

So it’s been two weeks since I started dry brushing.  One week I was gone camping and didn’t do the dry brushing (something to do with finding a private place to do it combined with staying up too late eating smores and going to bed too tired to put in the three extra minutes) but I did dry brush every day, twice a day for the first week.  It doesn’t take very much time and did make me feel invigorated in the morning and relaxed before bed.

I wouldn’t say after one week it is the best thing I have ever discovered skin wise, but people it is good enough that I am going to keep on doing it.  I still had to use lotion on my face, but haven’t used any on my body for the whole two weeks (which I normally would when camping as I find my skin is drier then).  My skin is less blemished, feels way better to the touch and looks less dry than I would expect from not using lotion on my sun abused legs.  Also my feet tend to be so dry they get cracks in them (sorry if this is too much information) and I had a crack in each foot when I started and they have both totally healed, which actually is kind of amazing, considering I normally have to use tons of stuff and the cracks still often come back if I skip putting heavy duty lotion on them for one day.  Oh my, I just re-read that and feel like an infomercial, lol.  I promise, I am not getting any personal revenue from the natural brush manufactures of America 🙂

We have made it to the end of this passage! We are memorizing verse 12 this week, and if you are like me, also firming up the other verses this week.

Thank You Father for Your promises to us, that we are only filled by spending our lives on others. Let our light shine to bring You glory! Amen.

‘Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:

to loose the chains of injustice

and untie the cords of the yoke,

to set the oppressed free

and break every yoke?

Is it not to share your food with the hungry

and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter-

when you see the naked, to clothe him,

and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?

Then your light will break forth like the dawn,

and your healing will quickly appear;

then your righteousness will go before you,

and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.

Then you will call, and the Lord will answer;

you will cry for help, and he will say:

Here am I.

If you do away with the yoke of oppression,

with the pointing finger and malicious talk,

and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry

and satisfy the needs of the oppressed,

then your light will rise in the darkness,

and your night will become like the noonday.

The Lord will guide you always;

he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land

and will strengthen your frame.

You will be like a well-watered garden,

like a spring whose waters never fail.

Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins

and will raise up the age-old foundations;

you will be called Repairer of Broken Walls,

Restorer of Streets with Dwellings.’

This was not supposed to be today’s post.

 

I was working on a story last night. Almost finished, I was going to post it this morning. I just can’t see that happening now.

 

Before 5:00 this morning, I was up twice with my 11 month old, and once with my 3 year old. Then my 11 month old was up for the day at 5:00 am. So here I am.

 

I know that so so many of you have been here. Apart from love, I think that maybe exhaustion-empathy unites us most as mothers.  I even asked my husband last night if I am making an idol out of sleep. Some days… I yearn for it, think about it, long after it, desire it most.

 

So I have been feeling a critical lack of joy this morning. I have asked God so many questions, not really seeking an answer though,  just complaining. ‘How long can I keep doing this God? Could You please pave a way for my children to sleep through the night? What am I going to do?’ Done venting, I finally asked, wanting to hear from God.

 

‘Father, can You encourage me right where I am now?’

 

A gentle promise rolled in as a rippled wave to the shore. ‘Joy Cometh.’

 

This is enough for me for now Father. I have faith that joy will come, and that hope brings me joy in the now. Help me to count all sufferings blessings, because there I discover Your presence, purpose, and power.  I love how You care for me and provide for me in all my circumstances. Thank You that You can often be seen best by my tired eyes.

16_05_75_prev Come let us return to the Lord.

He has torn us to pieces;

now he will heal us.

He has injured us;

now he will bandage our wounds.

In just a short time he will restore us,

so that we may live in his presence.

Oh, that we might know the Lord!

Let us press on to know him.

He will respond to us as surely as the

arrival of dawn

or the coming of rains in early spring.

hosea 6:1-3

15_30_53---Sunrise_web

I am so glad we have a God who is so faithful, he will respond to us as faithfully as the dawn.

On days like this, when I see hurt around me that I don’t understand, this is good news.

Thanks God.



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