Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Transition

The rain falls heavy outside of the classroom today. As it pounds away, my thoughts lead me to a different pounding.

The pounding of my heart.

My Mama heart is pounding loud these days. It sometimes feels as though it will burst right through the wall of my chest. Being a Mother has always been my heart's strongest desire, and yet my heart feels that this very desire is shredding it into a million pieces at times.

Years ago I moaned and groaned my way through child birth. The pain was horrific, yet at the same time, the best kind of pain imaginable! The early stages of labor bring you to a new kind of excitement. The anticipated moment is finally here, and life sweeps you away in those moments of knowing that everything familiar is about to become unfamiliar. This little person that is half your heart and half of the heart of your love is about to steal all of you. It's kind of a strange thing that the thought of that doesn't seem scary, but invigorating.

And then... transition hits.

It is like a whole ton of stones has come down upon you, bearing down with all of it's weight and heaviness. During these moments it is hard to catch your breath. Everything seems to be moving at a much more rapid pace. Those moments seem to spin out of control! The room suddenly looks different. What was  a few minutes ago a beautiful process, explosively becomes an ugly process. Bringing this new life into the world has become an impossible feat.... That seems to have no end.

But it does.

The baby arrives and the room becomes beautiful again. The ugliness disappears as quickly as it came.

During these days of raising boys in their teens, I feel that I have hit that place of transition once again. The days that preceded were exciting and invigorating. They were full of pain, but nothing that really took my breath away. These days are sometimes explosive, sometimes feeling as though they are rather ugly. Mornings fall into night fall with such speed and disregard of my emotions telling them to halt. Guiding these young men through this life that is so different and much harder than it ever was for me seems impossible.

But I've been here before...

There is an end to this. There will be a day when the ugliness will disappear as quickly as it came to be. This period of transition is just that. It is a necessary place to be to take us to the next place.
I know that the next moment that comes will bring with it it's own unfamiliarity. It too will be a stranger, just as every other moment has been.  

It is all part of the birthing process. This process is thought to be only a short while, but I'm discovering that this process lasts for a lifetime.

I became a mother 17 years ago and I have gone from the early stages to a period of transition. Now I sit in acceptance that this is what the rest of my life as a mother will look like.... Many more years of early stages to transition.

Back and forth with a rhythm that never fails.

But just as a young mother learns more about her body and her capabilities with each subsequent birth, I will learn how to ride these rhythmic waves as each new one comes my way.

Because I love these boys... These men. They are part of me, I am part of them.

Like it's always said... "The pain is ALWAYS worth it!"


Thursday, March 27, 2014

Medicine


Grace is weightless.
Grace carries us home and grace covers it all and grace cures this whole bloodied, battered mess and His grace takes all the weight.
Grace is weightless. And the moment you bind up a wound with forgiving grace, you get to fly free.       ~ Ann Voskamp

Friends, these words came to me today with perfect timing. This woman knows exactly how to put my soul to words so much of the time. I am entirely grateful for her gift that she shares so freely.


Wednesday, March 26, 2014

My Boys

They are growing at rapid paces. They are becoming men before my eyes. Part of me is sad, part of me is excited. All of me is relishing every moment of every day.


Monday, March 10, 2014

What the Body Wants

Caleb and I are on a 10 day sugar cleanse. Today is day one. At this very moment, we are both suffering from HUGE headaches. As I started explaining the why behind the headache to my 12 year old son, I felt it necessary to record some thoughts down here.

" You have a headache because your body will react in strange ways to the fact that it's not getting what it wants. Our bodies WANT sugar, so our foreheads are throbbing!"

After I explained a little more, I encouraged Caleb to sit down and write a little about how fasting from something is affecting him. He was a little confused at the suggestion.

"Hmmmm..... I feel really bad because I want to eat sugar. My head hurts, my stomach doesn't feel right....." He said.

" No, don't just record your physical state of being. Write down how this is affecting your mental and spiritual sides. How does your body's negative response to not getting something you want relate to your walk with Jesus?"

I think it was too deep for my 12 year old boy to get, but I'm here to write.

Have you ever tried sugar cleansing? You must take out all refined sugars. You also have to limit your natural sugars to one small piece of fruit a day. You cannot eat corn because it is very high in natural sugars. Your diet during a sugar cleanse does not include any wheat, gluten, or starches. You pretty much eat meat, eggs, veggies, nuts, and a little dairy for the duration that you have chosen. Sounds pretty easy, right? I challenge YOU!

It's far from easy, and for the first three days your body and soul obsess over the things you cannot have. It can lead to extreme irritability, a false sense of lethargy, and other bodily symptoms such as headaches. I have one question though..... What if?

What if every time you wanted to give up and dive into that bowl of chips and salsa you instead filled your glass with water and asked Jesus to fill you up and take away the desire? What if you denied your body while supplying your soul?

What if in the process of detoxing, you suddenly feel that what our bodies want, most of the time, IS NOT what our bodies NEED?? Want and need are very different, aren't they? Those two words could actually be antonyms. What my body wants right now is something that also poisons my body. The same can be said about life. Some of the things I want in life are poisonous to my life. Things that I want can also be things that wreck me! Only Jesus knows what these things are, and He will build walls where necessary to protect me from this wreckage. Ugh..... SO hard to come to grips with, but I am here to tell you something.

It's easier to accept when I deny my body. When I deny my body, I'm more able to deny my spirit. Yesterday I felt discouraged about some things, but as the day has gone on, that discouragement has shrunk. I see things from different perspective. It doesn't necessarily make everything feel all better. I may experience a "headache" or two. These are just symptomatic though... Part of the process.

I'll be back to share more during this 10 day journey. Who knows, maybe I'll get my boy to make a guest appearance here with some of his thoughts. I'm really looking forward to ALL that The Lord wants to reveal to me. Clarity.


Tuesday, February 11, 2014

All Is Grace

In the end, that's exactly what it is... All grace.

Everyday I make decisions. Some are good, some are bad. I hesitated there for a minute... I didn't want to type "bad". I wanted to put "not so good", but really... Some decisions are bad.

Everyday I respond to life. As I age, I try to respond in more responsible, glorifying ways. Admittedly, I am getting better, but still... Sometimes I really fail at responding to life in a way that is pleasing to others and ultimately, to Jesus.

Everyday I simply mess up. My mess ups aren't always evident to others. A lot of times, my mess ups occur inside of my own heart. I catch myself thinking about something or someone in a way that is NOT positive. People hurt people, and my way of dealing with it a lot of times is to bury it. If my hurt is caused by the same person/people consistently, I bury it. Almost always, I try going to that person and sharing my heart to begin with, but too many failed attempts at being heard cause me to start digging and burying.

I have heard words lately that sting to the core.

All Is Grace.

Jesus extends this grace to me everyday. He pours it over me in all of my decisions, responses, and mess ups. He never stops. He doesn't bury my failures. He covers them. A long time ago He covered them literally with His own blood, and today? Today He continues to do the same.

My heart is heavy with the fact that a lot of times I am not so good at offering grace to others who deserve it no less than I do. Did you catch that? I wrote "not so good". No.... I really SUCK at it a lot of times. I justify in my own head that I have offered up that person's limit of grace. Their grace bank is empty... Moving on now. Time to bury and move on.

Do I want to be someone known for this character? Absolutely not! This is an area of my life that needs refining. I have gone here before too. It's a painful place. I have asked the Lord to improve my character in certain places, and He always does. He can't do it without supplying plenty of opportunities though. I am in the middle of that right now. I am in the refiner's fire, and it is painful.

Grace is here though. It is here to be received. It is here to be extended and to be poured over others.

All IS grace... And grace is all.