Monday, November 30, 2015

Day 30. One thing I am excited for

I am so excited to grow old with this man. What a joy he is. 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Day 24 something I miss

I miss my island. 

I miss living so close to the water and the breeze that is always there and how 
much cooler it is there. I miss hearing the wind through the Australian pines in the back yard. The boys called it the pee pee forest. They played survival there. I miss the magnolia tree, first tree the boys learned to climb. They would climb on top of the swing set and use it as a balance beam to get to the tree. What beautiful blooms were on that tree in the spring and so painful to step on the seed pods barefoot. I miss the boys racing back and forth on our corner sidewalk, where two boys learned to ride bikes and just all the walking and pushing of cars and trucks back and forth. They loved it. So many trees were in our yard there. So many memories of boys conquering the world.  

I miss our evening beach trips and how close target and the mall was, even if to do nothing but walk. I miss friends who helped to shape me into who I am and saw me through very very hard times. Most have moved on. 

My heart aches as I remember. 

God gives sweet memories. And He calls us deeper and farther than we can imagine. 
Oh to just trust. 

The days I live now I will one day miss, ache for. It is always hard to recognize that the days we are living in now will one day be the good ole days. 

Oh Father, teach me to number my days and to count all the ways I find You in them. 

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Writing Prompt 22 morning routine

Morning routine. 

In June, He and I went to a marriage conference.  The biggest thing we took away from it was what makes us feel loved and one thing to do to show it. 

We had to make a promise to do that thing. I won't tell his, it's only fair. 

Mine was that he wanted me to get up with him and send him off to work. 5:45am. This makes him feel loved. I want to make him feel loved. I do not want to get up at 5:45 am. There are many many reasons. 

I did it. I have kept my promise for 6 months now. I get up with him and get his coffee ready. We try to be so quiet. It is terrifying. 

But I enjoy it now. I miss him if I don't see him in the morning and I enjoy a cup of coffee in the quiet before anyone is awake, usually. 

He challenged me and I have grown. 

He was right. 

Fitting in

Something happened today that felt like a bit of a signal. 

I guess this has to be vague. 

We were leading in a obvious way. One person got up and walked out. 

You know when you realize that you truly are not like the rest? It is a concerning feeling. Being left out, rejected, unwanted. Even if it is by a vocal minority.  Somehow the minority always wins? Because the majority are afraid. 

Today it didn't feel quiet like that. It felt ok. Just letting me know that I don't fit, but it is ok. Freeing maybe. I've never really felt this before. It is a little strange. Ill have to process it a bit longer. 

But it is better than rejection. 

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Favorite Color and Why

Writing prompt for the 18th is your favorite color and why. 

Deeper than I originally expected. 

Pink. For years I think I tried to hide it. It is girly and I shouldn't be too girly... Because that is just not good. 

As I have grown into the woman that I am and as I have son after son, I have embraced my love for pink. It makes me happy. 

I have 7 sons and one in heaven. We lost a second baby, but it was to early to know, but it was probably a boy. 

I have always longed for a girl. A daughter. A sweet pretty child with long blond hair and blue eyes who would grow into my best friend. Who I could shape and mold into a beautiful woman who loves Jesus and knows she is deeply loved by Jesus. 

As our family grew, we knew we wanted many children and as I had c-sections we knew one day we would be limited in that. At times I doubted having a daughter. Other times I just knew that God would hear my hearts deepest longing to have a daughter and since I have obeyed and followed him my entire life, why would He not give me exactly what I desired. He is a good Father. He knows my desire. 

There were times I felt that I heard Him promise me. But He didn't give me what I wanted. 

The grief that comes with knowing that Gideon is our last baby is doubled when I knew he was not a daughter. It is deep. I am still trying to understand why. 

It seems like people knew all along but just didn't want to say it. That I am a boy mom. Boy mom, what does that mean? Manly woman? Woman who can handle a lot of junk and crazy? Woman who is not dainty or girly enough to be a girl mom. Just undeserving of a daughter, a relationship or a friend. 

I have struggled with not being good enough. Beautiful enough, womanly enough. It does have to do with history. People not wanting to embrace their womanly-ness.  

My husband has helped heal much of that. 

But Jesus, He is deeply healing. Even if I feel ignored or unimportant. He is healing and revealing His Fatherly heart to me. 

Daddy knows best. 

I love pink. 

Monday, November 16, 2015

Rays of light

Late afternoon of a Florida fall may be my favorite time to watch... His love. That is the way it feels.

The sunlight streams into the house and everything that it shines on suddenly becomes beautiful. Even the mess of my life, legos, crayons or cars scattered.  Even crumbs on the table suddenly become beautiful in the light.

It streams through the leaves on the trees and through the windows full of fingerprints.  His beauty in the mess. It warms me... softens me... to slow.  To see how He loves me.

He does make beautiful things out of us. It drives me to search for all the ways.  The busy can run me into the ground under all the weight.  But knowledge of His love lightens.

We are all a mess, we really are. But His love does not stop shining... pouring onto us.

Good Father plays on repeat soaking myself in Him.  He is my good Father and I am loved by Him.

Oh, Father, let it soak deep into my soul, that I will never doubt or see myself unworthy. Thank you for your love and the daily late afternoon reminder... a love letter to me.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

In knowing

In many big decisions there are times you just know. Searching for all the answers for months, even years. 

When you feel like something is storing deep within you and you know change will come. 

In knowing direction in missions, in finding my husband, in having my children and in knowing when we have had who God has for us, in ministries and when to leave or to stay. These are the times I have known. No true explanation, just a knowledge and a peace. 

To know intimately I think of different relationships.

 Mother to child. I know which child coughs or sighs from three rooms away. I just know their voice. They may not know me so easily. 
This is where the relationship with my Father begins. 

Husband to wife. In the beginning the knowing is slow. With more and more experience the knowing deepens. Just a sound or just pressure and a slight movement communicates desire, displeasure, joy. Knowing deeply. And the knowledge that it will continue to deepen. Such a holy heavy weight. My soul hurts with it. It is unexplainable. Knowing. 

This is where my relationship with my Lover grows deep. Feeling His nudge with my spirit. Unexplainable. Of course there have been years and years of my relationship being of a Father and a child. It causes me to trust deeply. 

The relationship of my Lover teaches me to know His movements and His touch. When He is filled with desire for me to come deeper or when He has displeasure, feeling the pain of that. Because I love Him I know Him... I learn to know Him and I trust myself that I am learning to know Him and His every movement.

I want to be where He is. 

I want to rest there in His arms... Knowing. 

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Your life in 7 years

Day 14 My life in 7 years!

Wow! It blows my mind. 

My babies will be grown and I will be 42 years old. 

Ages of my children. 
Gideon will be 8
Abram 10
Simeon will be 12
Malachi will be 13
Ezekiel will be 14
Isaiah will be 17
Josiah will be 19

I can only imagine what this will be like. 
I will still be homeschooling these boys. Hopefully I will have two graduates and lots of independent workers. I hope to not have to do much around the house. I also hope that I have a bit of time to do my callings in ministry to women. 

I would like to have a home on a bit of land. 
I also dream that our ministry will be full. Worship and women's and men's ministries. I expect to be fully in love with my husband and that our marriage is even more beautiful and deep. This man is my everything. 

I know that we will look back and say this was abundantly above anything we could ask or even imagine, just like we have the last 7 or even 14 years. 

Father, this next 7 years are yours. Do what you want with us and with these years. For your glory and your fame. 

Monday, November 9, 2015

Bakers half dozen

I homeschool my kids. A bakers half dozen.... Can you call 7 kids that? It probably isn't right.
Anyway. All of them. Are with me all. Day. Long.
No really, I love it. I know I am called to that. 

The day to day is hard but usually the overall feelings are good. 
Lately, like the last year and more recently, it has been much more discouraging. Because of the older boys and the effort they are not putting into learning. I have been at the end of my rope more than I like to say this last year. I lean on grace, and I wonder deeply if that is enough. 

Am I ruining them? Am I doing a disservice to them by not putting them in school. These are deep thoughts. Am I truly failing my boys education. 

Wow. I don't want them to just know how to find the answers in the paragraphs but to know it so deeply it becomes a reaction of the knowledge deep within them. Know how to find the answers, yes. But to live the answers.... 1000x yes. 

So he fails. He doesn't know. I fail. I don't live the answers that I claim to learn. I rage.  
He doesn't understand that it is deeper than just writing the correct answer.
I don't understand that it is deeper than putting a smile on my face.

Wow, do I want that.  I want to know the answers deeply in my soul. I have had so many questions lately about how I should do something or how I should respond to something hard.  I feel like I should know this by now. I shouldn't be struggling. The answer should come right out of me.  Grace and truth comes to mind. I long to walk in grace and truth.... even in a disagreement, grace and truth.

Father, would you put this so deeply in my soul that grace and truth will flow out of me effortlessly.  It comes from rest and trust in You. Give it to me Father. I know I cannot do it on my own.

The last week or so I have felt inside of me that I can just sit and be still... I don't have to 'do' in order to be accepted. I am found in Him. Hidden in Him.

Truly, the lessons that I struggle with my boys are the same as my own just in different areas. Grace and truth should go deeper within me.  Motherhood is sanctifying is the saying, honestly that is annoying to me sometimes. I want it to be easy just like my son wants his math to be easy.  Our homeschool journey is not just about these boys... it changes me.

His lessons build on each other and if he can't get a concept we have to do it over and over until he does.  I do the same thing... over and over and over.  I wish he would realize that he isn't the only one failing. Oh, but for grace.

These 7 arrows. The number 7 means completeness and perfection.  More than just the idea that our family is complete and perfect the way my Father arranged it, but in a spiritual way, He has promised that I am being completed and perfected in Him. What a gift they are to me.

2 Corinthians 12:9
And He has said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness " Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.
I rest in this.
Father, teach me to boast in my weakness so that Your power may dwell in me deeply.

God size dreams

When God begins to whisper God sized dreams it is terrifying. 

God placed His dream in our hearts for the family He has given us. Looking back one step at a time faith builds on faith. To look at the whole picture I am amazed. He has done big things with those dream for "just one more" said over and over through the years. I am already in awe over wheat He will do with each of my sons. I feel an excited expectation. 

It always shocks me when I realize that God has used us to speak into the life of those outside of my home. The feeling that comes to mind is uncomfortable, like attention has been brought to me. I shrug it off.... Appearing to be a snob, inwardly terrified. I don't want responsibility of leading others when I know the weight of it. 

God is placing these things deeper in us and I see glimpses every now and then of how He may accomplish it. His ways are not our ways and the way He accomplishes He plans are never what I expect. Just like with our family. 

I pray desperately for humility and that we will walk each step on the path He has for us. God if we fail, You are with us. You are sovereign and your will will be accomplished. I trust in You. 

We'll be the dreamers of your dreams. 

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Writing prompts challenge day 5

Day 5
A place I would live but I have never visited. 

Being in missions as a young adult and having a love for travel makes me think this would be easy, with Mike. Thinking of all the boys at the age they are now it doesn't sound easy, a romantic thought, but not easy. Probably because life here in America isn't easy, no matter how convient it is. 

Back to the question. 
Anywhere in Europe. I have visited a lot of it but I would love to live anywhere in Europe. 

From a missions standpoint, I would live anywhere I felt the Lord asking me to. The feeling is indescribable, fully alive. Amazing. 

When can I go?

Easy question. 

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Break Free

Days like today are hard. Stress is starting to weigh on me... Hormones too, I guess I shouldn't leave that out even if I want to.

These boys are exhausting some days. The time change has just added an extra hour for me to keep a 3 year old calm, which is always unsuccessful. His screams make me want to rage. I have fought so hard, lost some and won some. So many triggers and I just can't keep it all in check. Ministry, sickness, teething, tempers, homeschooling and math. Everyday things that add up in a mind fast. 

I know that the Lord is working on my raging, opening my eyes to see the strong holds and break them. I hate what I do. Because I remember..... and I know no matter how much I cry and apologize that is what these boys will remember, a raging mom. 

I know that break through is coming. When you acknowledge the sin the enemy loses his power. Turn and repent. 
God's power is greater.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Spinning heads

On days you don't know who to trust. Who is telling the truth. Who can I turn to. 

Jesus come and be Truth in this. 
I beg you. 

Monday, November 2, 2015

Breathing Prayers

When I was a child I would pray desperate prayers... God answered the faith of a child. That was all I had. Faith in the Father who would always provide, His good in His time.  He is so good.  That was my foundation in prayer.  Always desperate.  It carried on to people coming to me know that somehow God heard.  If not for the thing, but always peace that passes understanding.  I think that when you know God is the only option that something will happen you are in a place where He inclines His ear to you. I imagine Him leaning down to me... oh my Father, thank you.

As years pass some prayers aren't answered and a wall is built because I don't understand why He won't heal and answer these prayers that I feel would bring Him glory.  That is just it.... what I feel will bring Him glory.  A child does not know best.  A good Father lovingly smiles and knows and holds.  For years He held me. But my prayers were not as desperate as I began to doubt.  Is He really good.... does He really what my good... questions you don't actually want to voice. They are sin, they are normal... we all ask them.  And we all hide the questioning from anyone on the outside.

He begins to stir again out of my desperation.  Oh I want that back. To know I am lowly and that He is holy and perfect and begging Him, because you will fail and fall if He doesn't come through.  You will look like a fool. God, do not bring me to shame. My prayer is that He would make me a woman of prayer and of faith. To use me for His glory.

He uses the birth and sickness of my 7th son(!!!) to bring me back to that place. Desperate.  Knowing He is sovereign and He will do what He wills.  But Moses! Moses changed the heart of God toward His people.  I remind God of these things.  That I know and I trust, but I know He is able.  What peace He gives.  He answers and He saves.  He draws me to Himself and He shows His glory and what only He could do.  But even if He didn't, I will trust. I've been through too much to do anything else.

As I have prayed again desperately this past year again in new ways and new things that I am asking Him for, He has begun stirring.  My brother reminds me in his words to someone else,  "If you are asking God to do something amazing, why would you expect it to be beautiful and perfect?"  Wow, it is not.  But I know God can... I know He will bring the glory all for Himself and that is what I long for.

Drag us along if you have to Father... but teach me to run hard after you.
Put it in me Father.

Just as my breaths are constant and never ending, let my prayers continually rise like sweet incense before You.