Tuesday, July 31, 2007
Me holding up little Joseph's photo: "Baby, do you know who this is?"
Joshua quickly and confidently answered, "Yes."
Me, surprised: "You do? Who is he?"
Joshua, bored with our conversation: "Yeah, he's the guy that brings me cheese dip at the cheese dip house. You know him, Mommy."
And, if that wasn't enough. . .
The other morning I got JCT out of his crib and brought him downstairs to say good morning to his Daddy. JCT was bright and cheery as always.
Erik smiled at him and said, "Buenos Dias!"
JCT didn't miss a beat. He looked Erik right in the eye and responded, "Quesa - Dilla!"
I think we may be eating Mexican a little too often??
Sunday, July 29, 2007
5 Reasons that I love Jesus. . .
1.) He is unboxable!! I think that my absolute favorite thing about Jesus is that He is too big to be put in a box. He cannot be contained. He cannot be reduced to our wildest imaginations. From the beginning of time man has attempted to put Him in a box, to explain Him, to figure Him out, to make Him what man wants Him to be. But, He is beyond all that, beyond all that our human minds can conjure. And, I love that.
2.) He wasn't afraid to get His hands dirty. He wasn't afraid to reach out to the sinners. He didn't care what the "religious leaders" of the day thought - or anyone else for that matter. He reached out to the outcast. He touched the sinners and the sick. He loved people more than His reputation. He looked on them with compassion and not judgement. Now that is a Savior!!!
3.) Grace. He doesn't expect me to be perfect. He saved me not only from a life of sin spiraling downward unto death, but also He saved me from a life of measuring myself daily and the guilt that accompanies not measuring up. Does that make sense? His grace didn't end when I went forward and gave my life to Him. No, I still need His grace today, and something tells me that I will probably need it tomorrow, too. It is His grace that keeps this perfectionist from living a life full of guilt, fear, and self-condemnation. I figure if He can forgive me than I ought to work on forgiving myself. Grace, it is a beautiful thing.
4.) He chose fishermen and not scholars to be His disciples. I absolutely love that He didn't choose the smartest, the most well liked by society, the most religious, etc. No, he chose simple men. And, by walking with them day in and day out, they learned about love and grace. And, He taught them that the greatest among them would be the servant. And, He washed their feet. And, they followed Him. And, the world has never been the same because of it.
5.) He knows the number of hairs on my head. He knows me intimately. He desires and enjoys relationship with me. He could have left a book of rules for each and every situation that I would encounter in my life. He could have made life in Him black and white. But, He chose not to. He chose to make me dependent daily on a relationship with Him. He chose to make me dependent on His guidance for my everyday life because He loves me and He wants to be in constant communication with me. Breath by breath. And, that is unreal.
My answers to her 5 questions:
1.) Is your life today the same as YOU planned it to be?It is quite similar. I have always wanted to be a stay at home mom. But, God did throw me a bit of a curve ball by giving me all boys!! I have always been a girly girl, and I never dreamed that God would bless me with a house full of boys!!!!
2.) Why do you attend the church that you do?
Good question. Erik and I actually get this question alot. And, the only answer that I have is that my husband and I know that we know that we know that God called us to be a part of our church.
3.) If given the choice, how would you spend tomorrow morning?
Ahhh, I love this question. I would have my mother come over (she only lives 4 hours away :-) and take my children on a fun outing!! And, I would sip coffee on the back porch with my Bible and a good book. Oh, and it would be fall outside - cool and crisp with lots of pretty trees to look at and a gentle rain falling on the roof above me. . .
4.) What is your favorite Bible verse at the moment?
"Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom." Luke 12:32.
I just think it is cute that He calls us "little flock." It is so endearing. It is sweet to my heart.
5.) What's your idea of a good vacation?
No stress. I don't like to be places where there are big crowds. I would like to be somewhere quiet, peaceful, yet fun for the boys! Maybe somewhere close to nature. But, not camping. I don't want to be that close to nature.
Thursday, July 26, 2007
You are still a mystery to us, little man. Erik and I were discussing your personality the other night, and we are just beginning to see glimpses of the person you will become. Oh, I can't wait to know you better and better. As much as I hate for the baby days to pass, I cannot wait to know who God made you to be, my sweet Lijah. He has a wonderful life for you, and I can't wait to walk through it with you!!
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
Sunday, July 15, 2007
I slept for seven straight, uninterrupted hours last night!! I put Elijah to sleep in the Moses Basket at 7:30 so that Erik and I could bathe and put the older two to bed. At 11:00 p.m. little Elijah was still sleeping soundly in the Moses basket, and I was ready for bed. So, I carefully picked him up, took him into our bathroom, changed his diaper and his clothes, nursed him, and put him to sleep for the night. I woke up at 6:45 a.m. to the sweet pitter patter of Joshua's feet coming to climb into bed with Erik and I.
But, the craziest thing is that the child is still asleep. It is 10:21, and he has yet to wake up. I keep going in to check on him. And, yes, he is breathing. He even coughs occasionally. He must be growing? I feel certain that I will hear his sweet cry soon! But, I am celebrating a full night of sleep with a hot cup of coffee and my computer!!
Saturday, July 14, 2007
As I stare deeply into their eyes, I see different things.
In my little leader Joshua, I see gentle love and a tender, sweetness. Yet, there is an underlying strength there. Not the kind of strength that dominates, but rather a powerful strength that is harnessed by pure, unchanging love.
In JCT's eyes, I see LIFE filled to the brim, joy, and a yearning for adventure. His eyes are full, full of thought, activity, and unbridled passion.
In Elijah, I see sweet peace and trust. He stares deeply into my eyes as I bathe him, change him or feed him. And, the look is pure trust and security. Serenity. I am his constant, and nothing brings me greater satisfaction.
And, as I search the eyes of my little men, I wonder. . .
What will God do with their lives?
Where will they go?
Who will they become when they are grown?
And, then I come full circle, and I pray for their little lives.
I give them to You, my God. May they glorify You.
Because that is all that really matters. If they glorify God while they are here on earth, then they will have lived well.
Friday, July 13, 2007
Thursday, July 12, 2007
Joshua has taken swimming lessons off and on since he was 3, and he always takes from the same wonderful teacher, Ms. G. She is incredible - the perfect mix of fun and discipline, and the kids really learn alot.
Monday, July 09, 2007
Erik bought a song called "I'll be" by Edwin McCain on itunes, and he wanted to play it for me. So, I sat back and relaxed my tired body into the couch, and he started the music. He stood behind the couch, so I leaned my head back so that I could look up into his eyes as I listened. And, as the music played he gently touched my cheek with his hand, and our eyes locked.
And, just for a moment time froze. For a moment I didn't hear the playing children, the sweet cooing baby or even the music that was playing. All I could hear were the words that Erik's soul whispered to mine through his soft brown eyes. And, tears filled my eyes, so much so that they began slowly rolling down my cheeks. He softly wiped them for me. All I could think as we stared into one another's eyes is, "We are so blessed, so blessed. My life partner, my one and only. . . the one that my soul loves. So, blessed. Thank You, Jesus."
Only two lines stuck out to me as I listened to the song. And, those two lines were. . . "I'll be the biggest fan of your life," and "I'll be better when I'm older." How true. I am Erik's biggest fan, and there is no doubt that being married to him has made me better. He challenges me with his selfless heart and unrelenting passion for our God.
As he gently stroked my face, I reached my hand down and softly stroked the face of our baby. And, I have never felt so blessed. Our sons playing in the background, our baby smiling sweetly, soft music playing, and our eyes locked taking it all in. My eyes opened to the floodgates of blessings surrounding me, the everyday blessings, the biggest blessings of my life.
Monday, July 02, 2007
I have been missing my evening jogs for a while now. Missing them, longing for them. . . So, you can imagine how excited I was when Erik called me one evening last week at 5:30. I could hear his radio in the background, so I knew he was in the car on his way home. Hallelujah!! 5:30 is early for my Erik, so I was thrilled. I immediately suggested to him that we take turns running. He agreed. So, as he walked in the door, I high-fived him and headed out! I was walking on air, smiling at the setting sun! It was a good day, or so it seemed. . .
Anyway, I didn't just want to go for a leisurely jog. No, that would be much too layed back and easy, and three words that will never describe me are layed back and easy. No, I wanted to not only run 2 miles, but to run them in my old time. You know, my old time, my best time. Never mind the fact that since I last ran 11 months have passed, one baby has been had, and 15 pounds have been added to my frame. None of that really matters. I had something to prove to myself. So, I looked at my watch and took off like a shot!!! As I began running, I smiled thinking to myself about how nice it will be to walk in the house and brag to my husband about how good I felt and how fast I ran. I'd tell him my time, and then dare him to try and beat it! It was really a nice little daydream. I enjoyed it quite a lot, and that is a good thing because it was the closest I was going to get to being able to boast.
I really did feel good. . . at the beginning. But, honestly it didn't last long. I think it was at the 1/2 mile mark that I noticed my ankle was hurting a bit. No biggie. I'm tough. I have run through side cramps that would have left a weaker woman on her knees, or at least walking. So, I continued. A few minutes later my knee started hurting. I slowed my pace a little. It got worse. Sharp pains, hard pains. But, I kept running, with a serious limp. I couldn't quit. Neighbors passed me and waved. Their looks of pity confirmed my fear that I looked like a wounded race horse who refused to give up long after she should have. But, I kept on. . . for a while. But, finally at about the one mile mark, I quit. I hate that word. Quit, gave up, gave in, began walking. And, if you were looking carefully, you just might have seen a little drop of water coming from my eye, maybe. It was a sad day for me as I walked with a slight limp back to the house. I had hardly been gone 10 minutes. I wanted to smile and tell Erik that I was finished and I felt great. But, that would not only have been a lie, but also he never would have believed me. So, with my tail between my knees, I walked slowly up the driveway and into the house.
I'm just thankful he didn't ask me if I stretched really well prior to running.
Well, I couldn't give up after just one try. Erik got home at 5:30 again the next night, so I got all dressed up in my running duds ready to hit the road again. Erik instructed me to run and walk. Yeah, yeah, yeah, whatever. . . I wanted to run. So, I decided to pace myself and run very slowly. I started out at a turtle pace. I ran about a half a mile, and my knee hurt the entire time. So, I decided that Erik may just know what he's talking about, and I better follow his advice and walk for a while. After a few minutes of walking, I tried to run again to no avail. My knee felt like it was just about to pop, and it hurt in a way that made me afraid to run on it for fear of doing far greater damage to it. So, I went back to walking.
As I topped the hill I like to call heartbreak, I heard a gang of dogs barking and running towards me. No biggie. I know these dogs. They have bothered me for years. Except this time I notice that there is a new dog. And, it isn't just any ordinary new dog. It is a fully grown dog of the doberman pincher breed. I'll admit that my heart may have started beating a little bit faster at this point. But,I reminded myself that I am not afraid of big dogs. I mean, after all, the first dog I ever owned was a Newfoundland, and I am now the proud owner of a Weimeraner. Big dogs, Smig Smogs. They may sound horribly scary, but they just want to lick you to death. I've always liked big dogs.
The only problem was that this big dog didn't like me, at least not on its property. It growled, it barked, it lunged, it ran circles around me, putting its mouth against my calf over and over. I really thought it might bite me. I have not been that scared in a long time, perhaps my whole life. In the distance I could see the owner of this crazed dog running after it yelling, "Zelda, Come, Zelda, Stop." Well, Zelda wasn't listening. Zelda didn't like me. And, I thought the owner was never going to get to me in time to save me. His driveway is probably an eighth of a mile long, so it took him a while. The Doberman was much faster. He finally got to us, grabbed Zelda and leashed her.
He apologized, but all I could say was, "I had no idea. . ." I had no idea that they had a new dog. I had no idea that the new dog was so aggressive. I had no idea that my run could get any worse. My hurt knee was enough. This was over the top. It was time to head home.
So, I, once again, walked with a slight limp back to the house, but this time there wasn't just one tear in my eye. There were more like one hundred tears pouring forth from my eyes - if only it could have been sweat running down my face instead of tears. I walked into the house, took one look at Erik, and said what I had been thinking the entire time I walked home, "I just want to run." I don't want my knee to hurt. I don't want scary dogs to attack me. I just want to run. . . like I used to. He assured me that I would, in fact, run again, patted me on the back, listened to me ramble about Zelda for a few moments, and then went out to run.
3 miles.Without knee pain.
Without meeting Zelda along the way.
But, I'm not bitter.
Not the least bit.
So, what is the moral of this story? I'm leaning somewhere between. . . Pride comes before a fall (or a meeting with Zelda). And, more research proving the benefit of stretching prior to exercise in the reduction of sports related injuries.