Thursday, May 29, 2008

God Alphabetically

This morning, I was lying in bed and thinking about God and who He is to me and felt inspired to do something I haven't done in a while. Make a list from A-Z with words declaring who He is and His characteristics.

I went to a conference a couple years ago and during one session this is what we did as a group and every once in a while I like to do it on my own. Something happens inside of me when I acknowledge and declare who He is. I find comfort, peace, confidence, strength, joy...

Give it a try some time, especially if you need some extra encouragement. You cannot stay down when you remember and focus on who He is! Then you can share it with me! :)

This is my list from this morning (they never turn out the same). I needed some help with Q and X, but the dictionary is "lost" in a box right now as we finish our homeschool room (aka The Discovery Room). So, they are blank for now. I think I'm going to incorporate this in one of our school activities some time soon.

Update: I added a second list just to see how different they can be, for fun. No, I do not think God and His attributes can fully be described or contained in a list. We are so limited within our language and within our own knowledge. No eye has seen, no ear has heard...

  • A - Abba Daddy All Consuming
  • B - Beautiful Bread of Life
  • C - Creator Comforter
  • D - Deliverer Dream Giver
  • E - Eternal Excellent
  • F - Forgiving Father
  • G - Gracious Giver
  • H - Holy Humble
  • I - Instructor Indescribable
  • J - Just Jealous
  • K - Kind King
  • L - Loving Life
  • M - Merciful Majestic
  • N - Never Changing Near
  • O - Omnipotent Omnipresent
  • P - Perfect Passionate
  • Q - Qualified Q
  • R - Restorer Resurrecter
  • S - Savior Strongtower
  • T - Trustworthy Triumphant
  • U - Upright Uncomparable
  • V - Victorious Visionary
  • W - Wonderful Worthy
  • X - X
  • Y - Yoke Breaker Yahweh
  • Z - Zealous Zion

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Mr. Blue Boots

Ah, two-year olds. Don't you just love them. The way they soak up everything around them. And do I mean everything. Virtual parrots in the house. How their personalities come into full swing. What a fun age! Challenging, but fun.

It always amazes me when that "independent switch" turns on and how life as I knew it changes. And it happens so quickly.
  • The exercising of the will - I am going to tell you no and then run away when I know you are coming to correct me. For the four millionth time. Today.
  • The endless new discoveries of the world around them - Hey, mom. What fun, I can kill a fly with my fingers!
  • The joy and excitement that comes with the conquering of new tasks - Learning that doorknobs allow access to rooms previously unallowed to enter (or exit-and yes, I do mean the back door) by ourselves.
  • The pride of independence and new ideas - Look, mom. I can take your African Violet out of the pot and put it in the juice pitcher. Again! Note: I am permanently giving up on African Violets after several failed attempts. Some my fault, some not. Well, unless you blame me this last time for keeping it on the kitchen table.
  • And yes, the interesting preferences and attachments they develop.

Right now, Samuel, has a thing for his blue boots. On this particular day, his outfit just happened to match.

Most days, not so much. (And yes, that day, I let him continue to wear them on the wrong feet. He was very proud that he put them on by himself.)

I do have to say it is pretty cute when he is marching around the house in a diaper and his boots saying his version of, "Hup, two, three, four." Or marching around the house while we sing one of his current favorites, "I'm in the Lord's army..."

If nothing else, it is a conversation starter with people. "Oh, is it raining out?" "No, we just love our boots..."

Seriously though, I enjoy this age and am thankful to God for this child and that he is so full of life and joy. He adds so much to this family and to my life. In all this, I am constantly reminded of the responsibility I have as a mother and in training these precious, young men of mine. The balance of choosing the battles, helping to shape their wills. Letting them become the unique individuals that God has called them to be. Wow!

So for now, I say, march on Mr. Blue Boots, march on. And may you serve the Lord all the days of your life, always marching on His chosen path for you, little one!

Monday, May 26, 2008

Spring - Signs of Life

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven. Ecclesiates 3:1 (KJV)

I love spring. Okay, I enjoy all the seasons and living in a state where all are visibly different, but isn't spring great! The warmer air, longer days, grills being put to use (yum), playing outside, sleeping with the windows open, and new life everywhere. Trees begin to turn green, flowers start popping up, and baby animals are in abundance to admire. There is something about spring that just seems to fill me with new energy, excitement, anticipation.

This spring is especially awe-filling for me as I feel like I am entering spring in my life as well. What, you say? You know, a new season. A season of life. Yes, I am preparing to give birth to our third child in a month, but that's not it. For the past two years, I have been going through a difficult and painful "season" and in the last week I feel as though I am moving forward again. I can't quite tell you what is different, what has changed, but I know it has. So I find myself filled with new energy, excitement, and anticipation for what God has planned in my life and in my family. So thankful to feel the hope, the life.

I have this rose tree that got badly damaged last year in a storm and I had to prune it way back. Then I ended up having to transplant it to another spot in the yard. I thought I might have lost it. There has been no obvious sign of life. I've babied it, fertilized it, gave it additional sources of nutrients, and nothing has happened. That is, until a a couple of weeks ago when lo and behold, life! Small green leaves were forming at the base of a branch. I performed my celebratory dance in full view of the neighbors and thanked God for preserving this special plant (Richie and Caleb gave it to me 5 years ago for Mother's Day).

This past Sunday as I was worshipping the Lord in church, I saw a picture of my rose tree and just began to cry as I felt like it was a representation of what I have been through and how I too am coming back to life. I have cried out to Jesus, I have clung to Him as He is my Hope and my God. But honestly, there have been more times than not that I have felt alone. That there has been silence. Perhaps this is when we really get to see what we're "made" of, when we either choose to press in, planting our feet, and clinging onto God, never giving up or we do stop, throw our arms up and give up.

There have been plenty of times that I have sat down in the middle of the road and wanted to give up. Times when I have been weary and discouraged, not turning to Him whose yoke is easy. Questioned and moaned. Thrown plenty of pity parties and tantrums. It has not been pretty. But, I always came back to the One thing I know to be true. He is God. He has a plan and purpose for my life-that's why this season occurred in the first place. He will never leave me nor forsake me. He loves me. He loves me. He. loves. me. He never gave up on me when there have been more than enough times in my life that He could have and probably should have. He loves me as I am.

And He loves you that way too. No matter what you are going through, no matter what you have done, He loves you and has a special place in His family for you. His Word promises in Romans 8:28-29, that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. It is for our good that we become conformed to the image of Christ. Keep pressing on, clinging to Him, believing. Spring will come and hopefully, we'll look a little bit more like Him!

Friday, May 23, 2008

In The Beginning...

The actual idea that I would even have a blog is pretty silly to me and something I never even considered until this week. Although I previously worked with a good bit of technology in my past career, it is not necessarily something that I have embraced in my personal life. I was the last one in my family to get a cell phone (almost two years ago), I don't have an mp3 player or iPod, don't use my digital camera, which I am trying to remedy, etc. And I worked with some hi-tech equipment in my career in the criminal justice field. Go figure! Ah, just another one of the many unique things about me. Aren't I supposed to be part of the cyber generation or something? There is something within my nature that rejects this kind of stuff. But hey, I'm open to change...

I had never even read a blog until maybe a month ago when I decided to look at one that was attached to an e-mail from someone I know. The actual encouragement that I received from it was amazing. Isn't it helpful to know that there are others out there who go through some of the same things that we do?! (And yes, I do need to get out more often...) Anyway, her blog led to another blog of someone I know...and the rest is history. Of course, theirs are the only ones I have visited, but perhaps in the midst of having an outlet for what's on my heart, sharing our lives with our family and friends who live far away and recording it for my kids - I'm no good with journaling at this point in my life - maybe someone else just might be encouraged and know that they are not alone. If nothing else, you'll probably get a pretty good laugh at the "goings-on" in this house-we're bursting with character!