Saturday, April 30, 2011

Day 120: Tonight....

... I bought my husband's book, the e-version of it, that is. I have an e-mail confirmation, but not the link or file to download yet.

I think that, and that alone, is a lot to praise the Lord for. It's a neat experience.

Now I need to decide if I wait for the file to show up in my e-mail, or if I go to bed and hope that it will be a surprise waiting for me in my inbox.

Isn't that I nice thing to have to decide between?!

Thank you Lord! Your blessings are so good!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Day 119: Myopic Creep

Nope, that's not an episode title of a Scooby-Doo mystery. It's something we're on the lookout for concerning my daughter's eyes.

Today she had an eye exam, and it tuns out she needs a bit more correction, which isn't a big deal. But it's something to watch. If, by the time she's eight, and each year her prescription needs to get stronger and stronger, we may need to do something therapeutic for her eyes to prevent myopic creep.

In the meantime, we were able to pick out some cute new glasses, and I am so thankful that we were able to get them for her and that I had the experience to measure her pupil distance. Norah thought that was pretty cool having her own mom step behind the counter and measure her eyes instead of my nice co-worker doing it (because to her, he's scary!).

She's been looking at herself all day since getting her glasses, in every reflection she can find. She feels so special today. In fact, she didn't even hesitate posing for her picture:

I told her to "strike a pose", and I think she went for "The Myopic Creep!" Oh this girl! She's a hoot!

Lord, thank you for my spunky little girl! Thank you for your provision in caring for her eyes, and thank you for access to a doctor who can examine her eyes so that she can take in all that you have created around her! May her eyes always seek to see your glory!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Days 115-118: The Week Hit HARD!

The title says it all, really. From Easter and the days following, I have been hit hard. There's been dome discipling happening in this home, and some resistance to said discipling. Then of course came the work days for me, and then today I literally have been out of the home more than in it. That's pretty rare for me, but I will tell you that it was a very blessed thing to be out of the house all day.

Not because I didn't want to be home.

I took my children to school, and then went out to pick up my grandmother. I have the honor of taking care of certain things for her and helping her with things. And that's what it is: an honor.  She let me know that she wanted help looking into what would be needed to get a lift chair as she's been having greater and greater difficulty getting up from her chair on her own.

So that was the plan.

And isn't it always the way with plans that they never quite go as planned? It is for me anyway. I would say that's why I don't plan, but that's not the truth. I don't plan because I'm kind of lazy about it. That's what I call a grace opportunity in my life... but I digress...

The plan was to pick up grandma, take her to the place, and get her back home in time for me to pick up my kiddos from school, or at least bring grandma with me to pick them up and then take her home. Simple right?


Upon arrival, we discover that the place had moved. Go figure. It moved very very far, on the complete opposite side of town. So, we could squeeze that into the allotted time. Off we went instead on a little outing to spend some of my birthday money, then to pick up the children.

New plan: Take grandma home after making a stop for her to get some fruit from a grocery store.

Actual happenings: Take grandma to the store, then out to lunch with a stop at the newly relocated medical supply place (for the lift chair), as well as a home decor place- just for fun! Then grandma was taken home, and I took the kids to Chuck E. Cheese for a celebration stopping thumb-sucking cessation (we got a call from dad telling us that Norah was invited to come and play).

Now, this is not a typical day for me. Not in the slightest. In fact, I have a headache right now because it was a long day for me! But it was worth it.

My grandmother doesn't get to go out all that often and would never have the chance to drive all over town or do the things that we did today had I not come and  taken her with me. She got to spoil my children a little bit, which I let her do (within reason of course). She hardly ever gets to do that. And overall, it was a mutually blessing for each of us. I haven't been able to spend much time with her, and she hasn't had many outings lately.

So, even with a tiring week, and an at-time trying day, I wouldn't trade in this headache I have for missing the opportunity to take out my grandmother or to do the activities of that day.

Good night.

Thank You Lord, for headaches.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Day 114: He is Risen!

He is risen indeed!

This is my favorite at church. To hear the pastor pronounce this sweet truth on Resurrection Sunday that, "He is risen!" And then for the church to confess in agreement, "He is risen indeed!" is just beautiful. Let the whole world know that our Redeemer lives! He has conquered death and sin! He reigns! There is a freedom and hope in him and him alone.There is no other path to heaven and salvation but through faith in Jesus Christ.

Oh, it is a sweet, sweet truth! It is one that I live in daily, and yet am not nearly as thankful for it as I should. The gospel is the heart of every day living. If you think that you can ever move on from it, then you are mistaken and must go back to it!

Yes. He is risen. He is risen indeed!

 Gracious Jesus thank You for the cross. 
Thank You for life in You. 
Help me to live in this truth of the gospel and to never forget it.
May it always be with me and move me to glorify You.

Day 113: I am a Blessed Mom

Friday, April 22, 2011

Day 112: Good Friday

Growing up, I always found it really, really difficult to understand why Good Friday is called thus. I just could not understand why we would call Christ's death as good. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I knew that He was a sacrifice for my sins, but golly, why in the world do we want to celebrate His dying?!

And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice and yielded up his spirit.
And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split... When the centurion and those who were with him, keeping watch over Jesus, saw the earthquake and what took place, they were filled with awe and said, “Truly this was the Son of God!” Matthew 27:50,51&54
For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, 
so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
2 Corinthians 5:21
There are so many things that I can write about why today is a good Friday, but in these few lines of the Word, we have a few.

1. Jesus yielded His spirit. It was done, when He decided.
2. The old covenant was done. Enter the new covenant. Curtain, torn.
3. The world trembling at the sacrifice of the Son of God. It was a testimony to His deity. 
4. He was sin on our behalf. Why? For our sake.
5. His righteousness becomes ours. Why? For our sake.

So, as an adult, I can rejoice in Good Friday. Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! Golly, why in the world would you not rejoice?! We know Sunday is coming!

Day 111: I Wish We Could Grasp His Name

So Judas, 
having procured a band of soldiers and some officers from the chief priests and the Pharisees, 
went there with lanterns and torches and weapons. 
Then Jesus, 
knowing all that would happen to him, 
came forward and said to them, 
“Whom do you seek?” 
They answered him, “Jesus of Nazareth.” 
Jesus said to them, “I am he.” 
...When Jesus said to them, “I am he,” 
they drew back and fell to the ground. 
John 18:3-5

The place: The garden at Gethsemane. 

It's night, or at least dark. To take into custody one man, the Pharisees and religious leaders had assembled quite the posse. 

It really wasn't needed. Jesus was going to go willingly, like a Lamb to the slaughter. He knew His time had come. Under the distress of knowing all that would happen, He was sweating blood. But He stepped forward anyway.

The gospel of John emphasizes Christ's deity, and I think that this passage is absolutely amazing. He says, "I am he," and the whole group of people there to arrest and exercise authority over this man, fall to their faces, prostrate at Jesus' confession. That is power. 

Jesus is powerful. His name is power.

I wish we could grasp the fullness of His name and the fullness of His deity. He is the great I AM. He is Yahweh. We don't use Yahweh all that much. It is the covenant name that God gave Himself when He spoke to Moses at the burning bush. 

Thursday came and went. Friday's dawn broke. All creation longed for this moment. I AM was headed for the cross. Willingly. In power.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Day 110: Project Joseph

This evening we had the pleasure of attending a celebration for our friend and pastor. Like Casey, he has published a book, and it has been a long and sweet process, one that has been edifying and a stretch.

It is a joy to see that my husband and pastor Joe Castaneda have been able to connect personally through their endeavors and be an encouragement to one another. My prayer is that they can both continue to bring God glory in their pursuits as well as their fellowship.

It is so sweet to be able to rejoice over these sorts of accomplishments. You can look at Joe's book here, and you can purchase it both here and here.

Father, thank You for giving men the heart to minister through 
unpacking Your Word through books. 
Thank You for the work that You have done in the life of Joe, 
and continue to do both in him and through him in ministry. 
Our family so appreciates his work with the young people at church, 
and we appreciate the godly example he is to the church body. 
Bless his efforts and hard work that he has put in, and may his book be used for 
Your purposes and for Your glory.

Day 109: Isaiah 53

It's Passion Week, and as Resurrection Sunday draws near, I can't help but think of texts like these, written so many years before Christ. It's powerful. The Word speaks for itself.

For he grew up before him like a young plant,
and like a root out of dry ground;
he had no form or majesty that we should look at him,
and no beauty that we should desire him.
He was despised and rejected by men;
a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief;
and as one from whom men hide their faces
he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
Surely he has borne our griefs
and carried our sorrows;
yet we esteemed him stricken,
smitten by God, and afflicted.
But he was wounded for our transgressions;
he was crushed for our iniquities;
upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
and with his stripes we are healed.
All we like sheep have gone astray;
we have turned—every one—to his own way;
and the Lord has laid on him
the iniquity of us all.
He was oppressed, and he was afflicted,
yet he opened not his mouth;
like a lamb that is led to the slaughter,
and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent,
so he opened not his mouth.

Isaiah 53:2-9

Monday, April 18, 2011

Day 108: Less Than a Month

I have less than a month until I take a test that will determine whether I will be an optician or not.

I have less than a month to get through all the studying and test prep and flash cards.

I have less than a month.

Lord, give me a clear mind and a diligent spirit to get all the studying done that I need to do. 
Please help me with finding time and being honest about when I need help. 
Thank You for letting me learn all these things, 
and help me to remain thankful even when I feel very humbled in my lack of knowledge.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Day 107: Between Sleep and Awake

(Before I start, I know that I numbered yesterday as 206. I never said that this challenge would show any perfections!)

There is that place that we all know when our bodies are almost at perfect peace, in sleep, but our minds are lively and active. In that place I had a wish that my husband would be able to be in full time ministry again, that he would be able to serve in that way again. Nearly as soon as the thought was completed, fear entered into my consciousness.

The experiences that we have had in full time ministry are enough to keep anyone from wanting to re-enter. In so many ways both my husband and myself have been stretched and tried. Our hearts have been broken, and we have been humbled. We have been carried along a difficult path through unemployment, task reversal, criticism, and heartache. Hope has been continually deferred.

This isn't to say that there hasn't been encouragement, or sustained strength provided by the Lord. It's just been plain hard.

The thought of putting everything on the line again for service in the pastorate, is frightening. There's nothing on the horizon, that I know of, but I know that it is the desire of my husband. And it is my desire also. It's just a little scary. It's scary being at the mercy of congregations or the goodwill of elders. They are all sinful and imperfect just like me and my husband.

So when I thought about how I wished that Casey could re-enter the pastorate, and the fear came, I was reminded of how much healing has happened. I thought about how much healing has come from the process of publishing this book that will release soon.

My husband was beaten down. There's no other way to put it. Every weakness was tried. Every fault was found. Every thing that could discourage him seemed to have come his way.

But the truth that he communicated through the Word was heard and appreciated. He was encouraged. I'm not even sure that I have the words to express all that the process has meant to healing some of the wounds that were inflicted and dispelling so much doubt.

God has preserved my husband's heart for ministry. He has used many things to do so in recent years, and one of those things is allowing this book to be published, letting Casey bless others with some truths from Scripture.

I can't say that all the fear is gone. I know that when the time comes, I'll be more confident and sure of whatever may lay ahead. It's only the unknown that I fear, and there's no use dwelling on that for more than 2 seconds, amen? Deeper than any anxiety I may have for a re-entrance into ministry, is the desire for my husband to serve others in ministry. 

I am again, so thankful that Cruciform Press is publishing what Casey has written.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Day 206: Overflowing Cup

I am a blessed woman. Every day I walk this journey through life with my husband by my side, and our most recent chapter involves a book. As May approaches, he will be a published author, and in the process of getting to its release, he is given kind words of encouragement through endorsements, as well as friends and family being excited for him.

Today, he received an e-mail from his editor with an encouraging word from one of the proof readers and her impressions of the book. So far, I will say that this is the greatest endorsement he's had:

The depth of insight, the relentless God-centeredness, and the breadth of biblical understanding--it's wonderfully overpowering... I could imagine teaching someone how to do expositional Bible study with this book--it shows the obvious benefits of going deep in a text, just the text, and studying God in it, but also watching for common themes across scripture. Of course, it goes much further as well, revealing the careful study this writer has done, and that's what blows my mind--nearly every page offers some tremendous, riveting truth that makes me simply want to pause and marvel. Furthermore, its cultural applications seem rather timely with all the "emergent" press lately.

My cup overflows. I'm so thankful for this experience.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Day 105: Fro-Yo

I got 30 things today. For my birthday, my mother and father-in-law put together a fun gift for my 30th birthday that contained 30 of many different objects: Q-tips, paper clips, pennies, nickels, dimes, quarters, dollars, Wet Wipes, facial tissues, Hot Tamales, $30 in a gift card, teeth flossers and spoons and forks. We celebrated over frozen yogurt that is sold by the ounce, which is a very interesting and trendy concept. Overall, it was a kick, and a very fun thing for them to do for me.

Lord, thank You for my husband's parents. 
I'm so glad that I'm theirs too.

Day 104: Meds, Strawberries, and a Chimichanga

I'm diabetic. We don't have health insurance until June 1. I ran out of medicine to regulate my diabetes a little while ago. I thought that I could maybe handle it with diet and exercise.

I can't.

So today I was able to go to the doctor, a new doctor, and get an Rx written (there's a lot of details as to why I had to do that, but I'll spare you) and filled.

I will tell you that I have been feeling just awful. My blood sugar levels have been elevated, and it's just plain awful. There is no better way to describe it. When it's like that, my moods are harder to control, and well, I just feel awful- get it? It's awful.

So today, things are reset, and it's getting better!

On another note, it's our turn to bring dessert, and so strawberries and angel food cake was a must. It is a diabetic friendly dessert, and just plain delicious.

AND we got to go out for my birthday, and I chose a local Mexican restaurant where I had a delightful chimichanga and cheese enchilada. Yum!

Thank You Lord for Your provision to get to a doctor, be able to pay for it, 
and to have given us the medical knowledge to treat diabetes. 
I thank You have I have diabetes for it is a constant reminder of weakness 
and that I am under the fall 
and in need of Your grace. 
Thank You for the different seasons and the delicious things that each season brings, 
like strawberries! 
Thank You that You have given us so many things to enjoy. 
I pray that I would enjoy things to Your glory recognizing Your grace 
in each delicious experience that I have.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Day 103: Happy Birthday to Me


I have been given thirty years on this earth as of today. It sounds old, but it really isn't. I have a ways to go, should the Lord have that for me.

I'm thankful that today is a day that I can look back on the years gone by and the blessings I have. Every good thing is from my Heavenly Father, and so it is only fitting that I think upon those things today.

1. I have Christ.
2. I have a family in Christ.
3. I have a husband who I love and who loves me.
4. I have Norah.
5. I have Haddon.
6. I have a mom who means so much to me.
7. I have a birth mother who gave me life.
8. I have a sister.
9. I have brothers because they are my husband's brothers.
10. I have sisters-in-law.
11. I have a grandmother who loves me like crazy.
12. I have nieces and nephews... 11 to be exact!
13. I have an extra mom, who is a great encouragement.
14. I have a dad, who stands in the gap for one who walked away.
15. I have a home.
16. I have a home in heaven.
17. I have godly pastors, both in my past and in my present.
18. I have daily bread.
19. I have a work family.
20. I have encouragement.
21. I have hope.
22. I have peace.
23. I have joy in the Lord.
24. I have been given a new heart.
25. I have things that I can enjoy.
26. I have all my needs met.
27. I have so many wants met.
28. I have laughter.
29. I have romance.
30. I have life abundantly.


Day 102: Always a Day Behind

I got to have a date night with my husband last night by going to a Portland Trailblazers basketball game. It was a nice time. It's funny. When we got to the arena, I really wasn't all that excited to be there. I mean, if my husband turned to me and asked if I would mind if we just left, I would have been fine with that. But he didn't, and we stayed. It turned out to be a very fun game with some really fun plays.

It's nice to be able to go to something like that. It wasn't an expensive date, and for dinner, we didn't have anything fancy. But it was just nice to be out and about, enjoying a game. That's just a nice thing to do. We don't do that too often, and it's just nice that we did.

We had some friends watch the kids, and they were so attentive to them, and I'm glad that our children were able to spend that time with our friends. I hope that it was a mutual blessing for all!

Thank You Lord for times of recreation, for friends' willingness to help,
and for our children having a break from their mom and dad.
Thank You that they had obedient spirits and a fun time.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Day 101: Love Built Differently

Last night I got to go out to dinner with my mom, sister, daughter and niece. We were celebrating my birthday as well as my girl's. It was so nice to talk, dote over Seble, and enjoy a meal that none of us ladies had to cook.

The highlight of the night, in a way, was when we were leaving the restaurant. In the parking lot we came across two sisters that we knew from school growing up. They of course doted more over Seble, and then the younger sister asked a question that I could tell she was nervous to ask.

"Um, how is it, or, is it... Is the love different? I mean, is it different than having your own?"

It was such a beautiful question. These are the questions that I am so glad that people will ask. It's a brave question, and she approached it nervously, not wanting to offend. She explained that she and her husband have been talking about adoption, and this was something that has come up in their minds.

Just so you know, I believe that it is a very fair question.

It's a question that seems very odd to me because my whole experience as an adopted child proves that there isn't a difference in the attachment and love that my mother has for me and my sister.

But if you don't have any adoption experience, this is a real and legitimate question.

My sister answered that there wasn't. She told this childhood school mate that there was some nervousness on the part of her husband in this very respect, but he has discovered, like every adoptive parent, that the love for his new baby girl is just as great and boundless as for his other five children.

I'm glad I was there for that. My mom put her arm around me and kissed me on the cheek, and said, "They just don't know." I just smiled. My prayer is that someday she can know, if that's what God has put on the hearts of herself and her husband.

The experience is different. To say otherwise would be untruthful. Instead of an ultrasound, there is a referral picture or moment that you cling to as you wait. Instead of knowing your child intimately through kicks and flutters, you wait and hope and pray. Instead of laboring to deliver, you wait anxiously and are given a gift that is a great sacrifice. The end result? Same love. God just built the love differently.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Day 100: The Centennial-like Post

Praise the Lord!
I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart,
in the company of the upright, in the congregation.
Great are the works of the Lord,
studied by all who delight in them.
Full of splendor and majesty is his work,
and his righteousness endures forever.
He has caused his wondrous works to be remembered;
the Lord is gracious and merciful.
He provides food for those who fear him;
he remembers his covenant forever.
He has shown his people the power of his works,
in giving them the inheritance of the nations.
The works of his hands are faithful and just;
all his precepts are trustworthy;
they are established forever and ever,
to be performed with faithfulness and uprightness.
He sent redemption to his people;
he has commanded his covenant forever.
Holy and awesome is his name!
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;
all those who practice it have a good understanding.
His praise endures forever!
Psalm 111

Leave it to my husband to do math for me, and bring me to the knowledge that I have been a day off in how I have numbered my posts. So today is the true 100th day, and from here on out my hope is that I will count the days properly, though I make no promises.

I don't have anything overly profound to say for today, except that I am very glad that I took up this endeavor. It has been an enriching experience for me, and I think that it has built up my faith, with establishing a very important habit to always be thinking of how I can praise God every day in every circumstance. I think I have preached the gospel more to myself than I ever have before. I have been very conscientious to look for the things that I can direct glory to God for. It's also been really humbling for me because when I seek to give God glory daily, I also see more and more of my own sin, how I fall short of God's glory daily.  

Friday, April 8, 2011

Day 99: In Which I Write of Fiber Bars and Fruit Snacks

It's been a crummy week. There. I said it, er, wrote it.

There has been broken sleep, sickness, crabby children, and thus crabby mom tends to follow. Every day has been a fight. I have lost my keys twice. Yeah, I can't find my keys tonight. I have absolutely no idea where they are. Every plan I have made has fallen through or has been sidetracked by something.

I have been brought to the point tonight of just total defeat.

Then I went to the grocery store for the third (yeah, third. Don't ask.) time today, and I knocked over a display of fiber bars and fruit snacks. I'll repeat that. I knocked over a display of fiber bars and fruit snacks. You see it on commercials as a joke or a gag on a sitcom. Me? I did it in real life.

It dawned on me in that moment as I'm on the floor almost laughing to myself (I say almost laughing because I was kind of too tired to laugh, and still pretty defeated) and picking up what I had ruined, that I've been taking myself and the circumstances of the week way too seriously. It's all just been such a silly week.

Everything has been so silly. The lack of sleep, the vomiting, the croupy cough, the lost keys. It's all just little stuff that has happened, and I'll just keep on going. It's no big deal. So the display got knocked over. It was picked up. It took 20 seconds. The world didn't crumble. And the world will not crumble if I don't get all the laundry done or the house spotless before I work again tomorrow. Just because I'm home most of the time now doesn't mean that it's going to work like it did before. And it's okay that adjusting to this new routine is harder than I expected.

It's okay. We'll figure it out. It's okay.

Lord, thank You for letting me knock over the fiber bars and fruit snacks. 

Day 98: In Which I Write of Triplet Movies

When It's a Wonderful Life came out, Jimmy Stewart played a man who got to see what it was like if he had never been born. Other movies have used that device of showing what things would be like if... fill in the blank. Another of those is The Family Man with Nicholas Cage. He's no Jimmy Stewart, but it was a fine flick. A wealthy business man gets a glimpse of what his life would have been if he hadn't left his college sweetheart behind at an airport. What he discovers is that he walked away from something greater than wealth or power.

I watched another movie that was basically The Family Man. No really. It was just the same movie, but with a Christian theme, and instead of Nick Cage, the man in question was Hercules himself, Kevin Sorbo. I'll give you a second to calm yourself....

Anyway, this particular movie shows a young man who leaves on a bus to enter the world of business instead of staying behind in his hometown and pursuing the pastorate, along with his college sweetheart (who happens to be Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the movie one, Kristy Swanson). Then his own "Terrence" or angel-like man (John Ratzenberger, thankyouverymuch) shows Sorbo the What If of his life.

So, three movies, very similar concepts. Triplets, you might say.

There are a lot of things that we could choose to be, and many routes that we could choose to go. I know this is true of my husband.

He could have been many things, and he could have pursued many different things. He has many gifts that would allow him to be more, in the world's eyes, than what he is. But he has chosen a course in life that doesn't offer much wealth or power or prestige, but brings much joy. He has the love of family. He has the joy of serving His Lord, and he has the privilege of studying His word.

I'm proud to have married a man who chooses the greater thing.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Day 97: Mushifying Mind

Now see, I waited until too late in the day to put together this post. My mind is mushifying as it generally begins to shut down every night at about 9:45, and seeing as I'm looking at the clock and it's 9:58, my mind is fading pretty fast. In fact, when it hits the top of this hour, that's just about when it expires, and I am absolutely good for nothing.

I have been mulling over what I would have to say today, and really, I'm not thinking of anything. This would shock my mother since I almost always have something to say. My mouth tends to be the most active part of my body, but right now, saying something through type isn't coming.

So, what do I do with that? I can think of a bunch of things that I'm thankful for, but I don't want to just fill a post just because I'm supposed to fill a post. As mushy as my mind is, I know that there is something that I can take and reflect back to God's glory.

Okay... I went onto Google Reader, and looked at the ESV verse of the day. So I'm going to simply look at that, and meditate on that a bit. We'll see where this mushified mind goes.

But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name,
he gave the right to become children of God....
John 1:12
So that's the verse for today. Obviously that is such great and amazing statement. But there's a problem with this. This is in the middle of a thought. Even with my brain starting to shut down, I can gather that (besides general familiarity with the passage- wink, wink). And I have always been taught, context, context, context. If I'm going to think of this verse, I have to look at the verses around it.
The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.
He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him.
He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him.
But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.
John 1:9-14

Oh, now this is just fantastic. Sometimes I forget the profound beginning of John's gospel, and I am not just referring to the first verse, which is just so key to so many things; but this few set of verses is jam packed! In this you have the eternality of Christ (the world was made through Him, going back to the first verse of the chapter) and His role in creation. There is the rejection of Christ, and the doctrine of adoption for those who did receive Him. How we come to Christ is in this also, not by blood, or the will of flesh or man BUT through God. (There's one of those "but God's" that my husband's book reminds you to look for.) Christ's humanity, and His divinity are referred to in this section of verses: becoming flesh, and being called the Son.

Okay, so this is just too much.

Now I'm completely overwhelmed and too many thoughts are going through my mind about all the amazing things that we are if we are in Christ.

I'm going to focus on the verse in the middle though.

I am His child. I am a child of Most High God. It is nothing that I did, of my own will, but through God. Nobody on earth willed it, but God. My husband's right. Those words are indeed the heart of the gospel. I am so humbled and give praise to God that there is the "but God" in my life.

Thank You Father, that I am Your child. Not that I did it, but You did.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Day 96: Cinco de Mayo is a Month Away

So, I'm not really sure what to write about today. I'm feeling a little random or something like that. I noticed that it's April 5, so that made me think that Cinco de Mayo is a month away. That's the kind of thing I'll think about sometimes.

I have a couple things on my mind.

1. I'm really glad I made it through my workday, and am anxious to get to bed at a good hour because I have an even longer workday tomorrow. I wasn't feeling well yesterday, and I'm still not all that chipper today. But I'll take it. I think a good night's rest without a little Nink in my bed will do me some good.

2. My husband's first official endorsement for his book came through today. This is such a neat experience. You can read it here. You can like it here. I am so proud, and I think this whole thing is so so cool. I am so grateful for this whole publishing experience, and I pray that people are blessed by what Casey has written.

3. Norah's attitude towards her dad hasn't been very pleasant. It's gone beyond just favoring me, and it's been a burden on my heart. It seems that today she has finally lightened up on this bad attitude. Obviously she has to prove that I'm still her favorite- at least for now- but there's been a bit of a turnaround. I am so thankful for that.

4. What am I going to write about on Day 100?! Should it be just like any other day? Or should I write something kind of different? Triple digits. I've actually stuck with this for nearly 100 days. Even if I have put a couple days together here and there, I have still been practicing what I have intended to do every single day, and that is to make a conscience effort to find the grace gifts from God in every single day. This is a very cool thing. I'm pretty pumped- as pumped as I can be and be feeling this tired.... I digress.


After all these things that I think about, Lord, there is only one response.
So my words are few.
Thank You.

Day 95: Sick Day

Early in the morning I was woken up by a scared newly-six-year-old who was ready to throw up. She did. I held her hair, and thus began our journey into a sick day. I woke up, having very little rest, feeling under the weather as well. So there we were, Norah and I, laid up. She was far worse off than I, but even so, it's not all that great to have two sickos in the house with no adult feeling well enough to care for the down 'n' out.

Then there was Haddon. Unscathed. He was patient as mommy laid around and was very little help to anyone really. He was kind and left his sister be. He was amazing. There was not one complaint or anything out of the boy's mouth. He just went with the sickly flow!

When daddy was up, he was so jazzed to have someone actually talk to him, and we saw all his energy come out. He was able to go with his dad for his favorite: "chicken 'n' chips". (Chicken nuggets and french fries.)

I am so so thankful that God gave our H-Bomb patience and understanding as his mommy and big sister didn't feel well. I am thankful for everyone in my family and the special gifts they bring to our home. Today I'm thankful for my son's spirit of contentedness.

Lord, thank You for who Haddon is, and for giving him the grace to
make it through our sick day.
 Thank You that he's not sick.
Thank You.

Day 94: Six Years...

... marks the time as her mother.

... of wiping her tears.

... teaching her the Way.

... guiding her.

... helping her.

... hugging her.

... of her.

Happy birthday, dear girl. I am proud to be your mommy.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Days 92 and 93: Whirlwinds

Definition of WHIRLWIND

1: a small rotating windstorm of limited extent
2a : a confused rush : whirl
b : a violent or destructive force or agency

I've hosted two birthday parties on two consecutive days. Yesterday's was for family, and today's was for friends. I have experienced a little bit of 2a as Merriam Webster defines it.

I'm thankful though that everyone was able to come over and celebrate our daughter's sixth birthday. I'm thankful that she has such sweet friends, and that they were all able to come and play. Norah had so much fun, and really, I did too. I like hosting things, and it always ends up being fun, though it never fails that I hit a snag. Yesterday, I went to get birthday candles down, and wouldn't you know it? All the candles were gone. Apparently, we used them all up. This morning I wanted to have something with more protein, so I made an egg leaving two for the cupcakes I had yet to bake. Guess how many eggs I needed to make the cupcakes. Three. So I had to make a trip to the grovery store. You can't help but just laugh at these things, really.

So tomorrow is the marker of enjoying Norah for six years.


Didn't she just learn how to walk?

Lord, may the whirlwinds in life never distract me from what's really happening.
May I hold on to every moment, for it goes by all too quickly.