Character Begins With You

I promised an Old Testament moment- journey with me, will ya?

I loved the first time I read that Isaac loved Rebekah. I re-read it over and over, because I had never seen anywhere in the Bible where a husband and wife loved each other. Instead it was all legalistic rules about daughters being sold, or given as property over to another. It made me sad for the, but somewhere inside of me, I always believed I could be in a loveless marriage and bring love and joy to it. I don’t know why I believed I had super powers: for the record- I don’t and I do love my husband and he loves me too.

I started to read about Isaac and Rebekah again last night and I was captivated by the kindness of this woman who loved her husband, and was a selfless individual. She was kind to a stranger and his animals. In Genesis we read that she not only got water for this stranger, but also for his camels, and she didn’t dawdle or take her time, she ran to care for them. That impressed me. I thought- this chick puts me to shame. I started to study what I was reading, and the more I read, the more I realized that I really don’t understand, or attempt to learn enough about what God has said to us in days past to support His dream for our future.

Rebekah marries Isaac when he is 40. It says that she was a great comfort to him at the death of his mother. We learn that Isaac was given two similar situation to his fathers; he lied about his wife being his sister- gross- stop doing that guys! He got busted because he and his “wife” didn’t get a room; instead it says, ahem, “he groped her in public”… yep- that happened and I bet most of you ladies understand Rebekah’s plight- groping is never a good thing! His second issue like his father’s was a seemingly barren wife, and he prayed for 20 years before Rebekah became pregnant.

She of course in true God awesomeness was pregnant with twins. God is cool like that. At some point within her pregnancy she had to go to God for prayer because her twins were fighting each other in the womb… what in the world. What would that even be like? How incredibly painful. I know there were days that just one in my belly caused me anguish, but to have two battling so severely that I have to go to God for answers as to why? Well, that is an entirely different situation. God not only answered her with a simple- “because they will be rival nations”, but followed it up with- “oh, by the way- I hope this doesn’t affect you in your ooey gooey mommy heart- but your oldest sons descendants will serve the youngest sons descendants.”  The End… Just kidding.

Well as all mothers know, it affects us very deeply indeed to see injustice with our children and as uncommon births go, this one got interesting. Instead of a traditional baby boy a Big Foot was born. A hairy little baby, with his not so hairy brother holding his heel… smile- photo time! What’s a mom to do but love on the “normal” baby. I wonder if Esau and his hairy self was treated differently by his mother? So differently in fact that a parental preference is shown from mother to youngest son, Jacob and father to olde son, Esau. Jacob was at home more often with his mother in the house, while Esau joined his father and other men hunting and gathering; developing incredible skills outside.

Rebekah has spent the last 20 years of so hearing the words of the Lord rattling around in her head, and I wonder if she had ever shared them with Isaac?  Would that have changed his decision on his blessing? More of that in a few. Jacob proves that he has been under his mothers control using food as a weapon against his very hungry hunting, working out in the elements brother, and essentially trades his literal birthright because of his body’s physical need. I have to say I was shocked that He didn’t eat in the wild, or that he appeared back at home hungry, but more so that in his day and age he didn’t care about his birthright. It just doesn’t make sense- he was the grandson of Abraham! His grandfather was literally called the “Father of Nations”… that’s a wealthy guy, and the inheritance Isaac received was full and incredible. What person could care so little when status mattered sooo very much! Apparently Esau.

Jacob is well please with himself- but should he have been, I mean dudes typically just lie, women more often deceive- throw stones if you want- but it’s true. He resorted to what he had to have learned from life with his mother.

Time goes by- I didn’t study the timing… my bad.

Rebekah hears that Isaac is prepared to offer his blessing on Esau and she panics. She creates a plan to deceive her husband in a benefit to her youngest son. I am sure that what the Lord had said was in her mind throughout this and she was probably proud of herself, like she was bringing God’s plans to pass- how many of you know that while interesting in thought- that actually doesn’t work. His plans are good enough- He really doesn’t need you to do the planning, just the carrying out!  She actually sews and makes hairy items to cloak Jacob in. He goes to his father and receives the blessing, despite Isaac’s uneasiness at Jacob’s voice coming from Esau’s body. Don’t dupe blind people guys- It’s not cool.

Esau comes in from outside and prepares the meal as Jacob had already done and went to his father’s side, where Isaac learns that he has blessed the wrong son, and is unable to retract it. Esau weeps. I can not imagine the bitterness that I would feel at my brother, and certainly my mother when I found out her involvement. How could they take not only his birthright and the place of the first born son- but to steal the blessing- ouch.

His father gave a minimal blessing after this to Esau and what we see of Isaac’s interaction with Rebekah doesn’t show any antagonism at all… I know my husband would be furious with me. I don’t understand, and more so I am lost as to Rebekah’s change. How do you go from being the kind of woman that runs to get water for a strangers 10 camels to a women who deceives the man who loves her? Where did the change occur? Did bitterness come when she believed herself to be barren? Was she angry with the Lord for giving her a hairy son, maybe one who embarrassed her? What was it? Was it Isaac’s favoritism for Esau or just her love for Jacob? Did she just lose herself somewhere along the way? I don’t know. I have looked, I can’t see where a direct answer is given for why she would do these things.

I can tell you what I have learned from my short time being a wife and mother- I fail so often. I believe as women, we can get swept away in our failures, and what we can present to others matters far more than it should. Rebekah wasn’t unlike any of us. Each of us has hurdles to jump. I remember when I was sweet and kind, and completely un-jaded by life. A time before I knew agony in marriage, agony in death, and agony in dreams. I was different. I bet you were too. Back before you made that one mistake that has marked you. I bet if we got all of Rebekah’s story we would learn that there was a moment where everything changed. An event, a word, a heartbreak, that caused her to nosedive big time. Can you imagine what the cost of her deception was in monetary form? I bet none of us has ever cost one of our children a million bucks. The value of the inheritance Abraham left to Isaac was significant. I bet none of us has ever tried for literally 20 years to get pregnant. If you have- Bless your heart- and leave a comment- because we want to celebrate God’s faithfulness with you. I bet none of us are prepared to see what our lives would look like written out by someone else’s hand. The shame I would feel- would be overwhelming; but for His grace and mercy.

What we learn from Rebekah is that when God makes a promise to you, He does not need your help, deceitful or faithful to make it happen. He just needs you to be willing to carry out what He asks of you. There is beauty in that. In knowing that He has a plan that goes beyond you. If we didn’t believe that in the depths of our souls where would we rest? What we learn from her is that the beginning of our story doesn’t have to end the same, and vice versa. If you were like Rebekah- like the un-jaded me- we don’t have to stay in our “new”state- we can become even “newer” and reflect Him. We in fact, are called to look more like Him. There is more on the line than the way other people perceive us ladies, there is the internal perception our children not only see from us, but will reflect in themselves. We can build their character or break it. We can be a blessing to our husband or we can be a curse. It actually is, up to us.

May you have new strength to walk out His plans and purposes for you, May He show you the area of weakness that He will make strong, and may you choose to make today more than yesterday and the days before.

Blessings,

mel

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It’s a Struggle

To do or not to do.

To say or not to say.

To give or not to give.

No matter how we slice it- we always have a choice to make.

 

I am guilty of making the wrong choice- too often. I have a temper.I don’t want to have a temper. I would love to be even keel, but it wasn’t how I was programmed, so I have to consciously make a choice to be kinder than necessary in moments of frustration.

I really blow this often. You guys know from pasts post’s that Loralei and Cash call me Hulk Smash, and they have become great indicators of when my temper is rising. Cash began raising his eyebrows when I start to get frustrated. I have asked them to help me. Doing that let’s them know that a.) I don’t want to be that way, b.) I am willing to change, c.) That I value them and want their help in my struggle to beat this thing.

They have learned that when I walk out of a room, to not follow me, and I extend the same courtesy. We have a literal open door policy. When you are in your room, unless you are changing your clothing, your door is open. No doors should be slamming- ever. This has been difficult as Cash has walked through some moments of increased frustration due mostly to academic struggles, and his natural response tends to be destroy and slam. I have to accept some of that upon myself- as he has learned from me in my moments of anger to lash out; how that wounds me as a mother. This is a large reason that I try to change and include them on the journey.

Cash is much like adult me, while Loralei is like a younger me.  When she is angry, she just cries, and hides. I often did the very same thing as friends and family can attest. It was how I coped. What we have gone through with Cash has been far different than anything I have seen before. While he indeed learned negative behaviors from me, he has some that are all his own. I share these, not to embarrass or humiliate Cash, but to let other moms know- You are not alone; and for the children who do these things- You are not alone either.

We have seen incredible growth in Cash’s ability to regulate himself, but there are many times that he simply is maxed out- on everything. It can feel like a normal day with laughter and joking and then in a moment there is a snap in his demeanor. A sudden and unpredictable change. Most often this occurs during homework time, and I began this journey assuming he was overly tired, or hungry, and those still may be reasons, but I am just not sure. His temper will take over and before I know it, he is in a rage. Yelling, throwing things, destroying whatever is in his path. He covers his ears even though he is the one making the noise. I hold him, as loosely and yet as tight as I can. I want to protect him, and keep him from harming himself, and then I pray. I hold him, and rock him and he pushes against me, fist clenched and he hits, and kicks and I hold to him; just as the Lord does me. His skin is so hot to touch- it’s like a fire is caught on the inside of him. Then a time will come- it seems as though it’s days later, but its mere minutes and he relaxes, and his hands have found a blanket, a shirt, or a string and he whirls it around his nose, his fingers that we try so hard to get him to stop sucking settle into his mouth and he starts to breath in and out, and then I know, I have my son back.

It is traumatic, it is hard, and it is unfair- but this is our hand, and we know with the Lord’s help we can play it well.

He apologies before I have even let him go and he ushers in promises to clean his now destroyed room, and after a few minutes of cooling down, he does- his skin temperature is coming down and we together work to fix the mess. For the remainder of that day, he will stick closer to me, and I to him, reassuring love back and forth in the midst of  the days events. I come away bruised and wounded, absorbing his crushing words in anger, and injuries in action. In these moments I want nothing more than to know what causes his reaction so that I can stop it. Is it a food? Stress? A smell? A word? A tone of voice? What is it?

I doubt many of you experience this, if people did, it would be talked about so much more; or would it? Are we afraid to say our children like us, have flaws? Are we unwilling to reach out to one another for help? For encouragement, for strength?

I don’t know; but what I do know, is everyday I have to make a choice to be a faithful wife, and a good mother. After working a full day at work and caring for the needs of a corporation, it is difficult to be either of those things. It is then, in the weariness that I have to acknowledge that it is a choice, I can get into the action, as I do with Cash; or I can sit there and watch it pass me by. Tired or not, weary or not, overwhelmed or not, I have a choice, and I have determined that because of Whose I am. I can do all things, and so can Cash. He can overcome because Jesus overcame. It may be a test of our strength or his will, but because of the blood of a sinless man on the cross at Calvary, we can do this. You and I. We are able. In His strength, and not our own.

Blessings,

mel

 

What I learned from Fridays and Dunkin Donuts!

When Cash was in Kindergarten we used to have to drive to a bus stop near us that was the earliest route, so that I could get to work on time.

It was really frustrating. We would get there early every time, because you can’t chase the bus down with your car… well I guess you could, but it isn’t like me to chase anyone! 🙂 Something we did during that season was read the Bible together and work on Scripture Memorization. It was so much fun, and even now two years later, the kids know the scriptures, what I didn’t realize was how much it would impact me and my ability to remember the scriptures.

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That’s What I Love About Fridays!

Friday- My favorite day.

I love Fridays. I remember that my love for Friday’s started in High School. I loved going to the football games, the smell of hot chocolate, hot dogs, and the brisk air- perfect fall weather. It was my happy place. I am a jeans and sweat shirt kinda girl. I think that also began in High School. As an adult I realize that it was a struggle with body image, and I was in no need of being concerned about that- but I was. I wore larger than necessary sweatshirts and I could hide inside it. Friday’s have continued to be a beautiful part of my life. It is the day I get to go home to my family and then stay with them for 2 extra days. I love that.

I love sitting on the floor piecing a quilt while my babies come to talk to me. (They will always be my babies, but they are respectively 7 & 8). We talk about all sorts of things. The bring up topics and we deal with them without embarrassment or shame. My son heard a song a few weeks ago and while we were riding down the road he brought it up- our conversation went something like this:

Cash: “Mom, I heard a song today.”

Me: “Ok, what song did you hear.”

Cash:”I can be a freak.”

Me: “Hmmm (in s sweet sounding way)… where did you hear that?”

Cash: “From someone. I wanted to ask you about it though- because I didn’t think it was good.”

Me: (My spirit is soaring- he knows- even without understanding!) “I am so glad that you asked me about this, because that song isn’t appropriate.” “What is most important is that your spirit spoke that to you before I did, and that means your relationship with Jesus is working!”

Cash: (Smiling largely) “That’s good, right, mom?”

Me: “That is very good. Thanks for bringing this to me and trusting me to talk with you about it.”

 

Our conversations aren’t always so easy- or so quickly solved. There are days when, like everyone else, we struggle to understand one another. I have often felt robbed of the time at home with my children, and when the Lord allows me to speak into the kids’ lives and have them trust me, it assures me that despite my feelings or availability, He will continue to lead them in truth, with or without me.

There is something about a Friday. I’m telling you. I don’t know what it is, but it brings possibility to me. I begin creating crafts in my mind before the materials are even in hand. I process through all of our options for the weekend and how best to use our time and finances to make memories. I long for the days of fall football games and spring basketball games, sharing these events with our children before it’s their time to be in school. I want us being there to be a normal occurrence. I don’t want a day to come where they think, “Why are my parents here?” Instead- we go together, and while they can go off and learn what it is to fall and get back up, emotionally and socially, we will be there, to cart them home, wipe their tears speak words of encouragement and love and remind them who they are and what they are called to be.

We can’t continue to live distracted, heads turned by every little thing, if I am not intentional now, teaching what end results should be, I am not preparing them for Friday nights and those awkward middle and high school years; and man, those days are rapidly approaching. Praying I can continue to be a mom who hears with heart, mind and spirit when those really difficult conversations come.

Praying for you too, that if you are already there or are headed there, that your relationships would be founded on solid rock, unmoving, unwavering, undisturbed by the storms of this life.

 

Blessings,

mel

When Favor Comes In

I have expressed on here multiple times that we have a son who is struggling with his education; I have been advocating for him as fiercely as I can. It has been a trial. A true trial. A long and hard struggle and the hardest parts haven’t come yet.

I have never looked at my children and thought- “they are gifted”, I haven’t ever thought, “my kids are below average”. I have thought, “why is my kids paper so different?”

Mom’s are given this beautifully unique gift that is just ours- not to say that there aren’t dads out there with it, but it’s predominantly moms. We hang up papers that make no sense, have no true artistic or aesthetics value, that would be something I would have to pay someone else to take, and we see how beautiful it is. We remember that at one point, they couldn’t hold a crayon at all. We remember the first line they drew, the first time they could form a letter and then piece a group of letters into their name. It is beautiful to us, and more so because they brought it home, un-crumpled it from their backpack and handed it to us, with their beautiful eyes shining begging us to show appreciation and recognition of their accomplishments.

When I walk the halls at their school and stand outside of their classroom and look at the brag wall- I know immediately which items are my children’s. I am not cutting them. They are so beautifully created.

Loralei is the absolute sweetest person I have ever met. She is beyond measure the most tender hearted and loving girl I could have ever asked for. She makes me cards and tells me how much she loves me all the time. Melt my heart.

Cash is a builder, a creator, an architect in the making. A musician, an anything he puts his mind too. The robots made from cereal boxes are hiding in every closet in the house- almost.

They have encountered difficulty. They have persevered. They have not given up, or given in. They continue to pursue excellence. We have fought to have the children tested to find out where the difficulties are coming in. I had beautiful advice given to me regarding my daughter from her sweet first grade teacher. When we say LD in the school system it means Learning Disabilities; as most children are considered “normal” the thought of your child being labelled LD is heart wrenching. Knowing they will be put in special classrooms, or pulled out of class makes you cringe. That they should stand out for anything below excellence in their studies is scary. The social interactions that they could endure, the hurt and pain; you just want to protect them, so you fight the LD for awhile. You say- “Testing?” uh… no. This was my husband’s response. Tim was completely against testing. No one was going to call his children anything but normal. Unfortunately, he married me, and no one is going to hold my children to a standard they can’t maintain when they are giving their best. I pushed and he acquiesced, finally allowing me to pursue testing. I got through to him using the advice from Loralei’s teacher, “you cannot view LD as a disability- just a difference. Everyone learns differently, but some children need additional help because their differences are more extensive than others.”

This changed Tim’s view and allowed me to go into warrior mode. I don’t fight for many things, in fact I sit silently and pray for most things, I don’t go into verbal war unless you touch one of my passions; but when it concerns my children- prepare yourself!

I compiled various papers with scores and family histories, multiple concerns noted by myself and the teacher and met to discuss a Child Study Meeting. Here in Chesterfield, VA. we have to go through a step by step process to get approval for testing. After a bit of work, I finally got approval for Loralei to be tested. We knew she struggled, but just didn’t understand why; after testing it was shown that she has a long term memory recall. A large part of that began to make sense to us; even just in home activities. Loralei can not do multi step directions. She needs 1 direction, time to execute and then can come back for a 2nd instruction. To overload her with multiple directions, it is a recipe for disaster.

Cash was considered too young per his progress vs. the National standard. Unfortunately, he isn’t meeting the county standard so we were at a loss. He works so very hard to read and write. His writing is huge, messy and everywhere. Everything I read of his makes me laugh. He is so funny even in his writing. I fought like a warrior and was turned down flat for testing. I agreed to retain him because his progress in reading and writing were so minimal, but the more I thought of him staying behind, the more it started to bother me. Because he is so intelligent and he shouldn’t lose time because of something he can’t control.

I spent days and days searching for someone who could do private testing. Hopes and dreams and let downs, and days later, I began praying for favor. I got a call back today from a Psychologist who can provide the testing we need, and even greater, our insurance will cover all of his services.

Can I get an Amen!!!! Dancing for joy, singing in the rain, so incredibly happy to know that the Lord is here, that He cares and is ready to dispatch angels who mess with appointment calendars!

If we find that Cash has no abnormal findings; we rejoice. If they find out he has something that hinders his abilities to read and write; we rejoice. That is the purpose of knowledge. When Adam and Eve ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, the Lord had no choice but to punish the behavior; but all He had tried to do was protect the amount of information they would later have to store, and then use. When we are knowledgeable about things pertaining to ourselves and our children, we are able to develop tactics and prayers to fight on their behalf.

We have a couple weeks before the test and another until we receive the results. How I long to tell you I was wrong, and he is perfectly fine… if he isn’t, his mom is a warrior, standing guard and ready to do all she has to; to ensure he has a successful future.

If you are fighting a battle today- we believe with you that favor is coming your way. Never lose, faith or hope. Continue to persevere. You will find Him in the place of your greatest perseverance.

Blessings,

mel

 

She’s a Teacher; and so much more

What I write may never change the world, but it will always change me.

I write for me. I see so many bloggers and writers and I admire what they say and how they got to where they are and often I feel ashamed of my work. I don’t measure up against the incredible talent I see around me. I read articles and posts and I am astounded and inspired. I am touched and pulled into a someone else’s world. I see the best of them, and afterwards I often sit and think, “I can never be that.” I probably won’t ever be that, that isn’t to say that I don’t value myself I do, but when you have so many areas of interest, having one reign seems impossible. I am not a good photographer- in fact I normally don’t even have a camera available to catch those incredible moments. I can’t do tutorials, because I am teaching myself as I go. I can’t speak on home making or decorating, because those are things I haven’t been blessed to do. I tell you about life, my life and God’s faithfulness and if that is all I ever do, I pray that His words upon your heart will mark you for His Kingdom! This isn’t a place where you will ever be profoundly changed by anything I say or do; but I will tell you about those who profoundly impact me.

My best friend is a teacher. She shouldn’t even be labelled as a teacher, she is a wife, a mother, a daughter, a sister, a co-worker and a friend. She inspires, develops, creates, and empower’s those of us Jesus viewed as the greatest; the purest, children. She lifts them up when life is dragging them down. She holds their hand, eases their burdens and wipes away tears. She goes home and makes being there a priority, she doesn’t get a sick day, or a mental health day, there are no vacations from little taps on the shoulder, or a cry of need. She is incredible. She did marriage the right way, finding the man God had for her, marrying in purity and then living in blessing. She inwardly holds her frustrations and anxieties to not taint the world around her. She overcomes the enemy with a prayer, sometimes whispered sometimes heaved glancing at the sky and asking for strength to go another day. One more day to guide the lives of countless people. By guiding one child, she is touching thousands. Each of us has a number factor following what impacts us. If I am impacted the world around me is impacted, my children are impacted, their children, their friends and the cycle continues. She makes a choice daily to make learning as visually and mentally stunning as possible.

 

The goal is not just to learn, but to learn in an environment that breeds peace and comfort, joy unspeakable. A place where faith and imagination come together and say, “Yes, we can”. She makes me weep, when I remember her desperate love for me to return to the Father. When I was lost, she called my name in the wilderness until she finally heard me answer. She is precious. A gift from God, my friend, my sister, the one who like it or not, says it. I wish I was more like her. If she ever made a career of writing, she would have you constantly laughing, but that isn’t what matters to her. She is able to guide her talent in one direction. Of this I am envious. I am wrapped in so many things, writing, sewing, singing, crocheting, making- something going on all the time. I never stop; but I rarely finish. As each new year comes to a close I listen and I hear her heart for her students. How each year she is using her money to make changes in a classroom that to most teachers is just a room. To her it is a home away from home. No child can enter and feel inconsequential. No parent can enter and think she is just riding it out until retirement. She is gifted. She doesn’t know she is gifted and will shrug it off, but she has a God given ability to bring atmosphere with her. She operates in the fruits of the spirit in her classroom. She is kind and gentle, loving, and generous. At the end of my life, I hope I will have been- more like her.

I have known her since childhood. We have walked through life’s unbelievable, so painful you can’t breathe trials, and we continue to come out the other side and I can tell you without a doubt; she is vital to my life.

10 [b]Who can find a virtuous and capable wife?
    She is more precious than rubies.
11 Her husband can trust her,
    and she will greatly enrich his life.
12 She brings him good, not harm,
    all the days of her life.

13 She finds wool and flax
    and busily spins it.
14 She is like a merchant’s ship,
    bringing her food from afar.
15 She gets up before dawn to prepare breakfast for her household
    and plan the day’s work for her servant girls.

16 She goes to inspect a field and buys it;
    with her earnings she plants a vineyard.
17 She is energetic and strong,
    a hard worker.
18 She makes sure her dealings are profitable;
    her lamp burns late into the night.

19 Her hands are busy spinning thread,
    her fingers twisting fiber.
20 She extends a helping hand to the poor
    and opens her arms to the needy.
21 She has no fear of winter for her household,
    for everyone has warm[c] clothes.

22 She makes her own bedspreads.
    She dresses in fine linen and purple gowns.
23 Her husband is well known at the city gates,
    where he sits with the other civic leaders.
24 She makes belted linen garments
    and sashes to sell to the merchants.

25 She is clothed with strength and dignity,
    and she laughs without fear of the future.
26 When she speaks, her words are wise,
    and she gives instructions with kindness.
27 She carefully watches everything in her household
    and suffers nothing from laziness.

28 Her children stand and bless her.
    Her husband praises her:
29 “There are many virtuous and capable women in the world,
    but you surpass them all!”

30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last;
    but a woman who fears the Lord will be greatly praised.
31 Reward her for all she has done.
    Let her deeds publicly declare her praise.

While I could have highlighted all of it, I don’t want her ego to get too inflated! : )

She is my sister by choice. I pray that she knows she has value, and worth all the days of her life. That she is highly favored and blessed in incredible abundance. May she walk in dignity and honor and withstand the war of comparison.
When attacks come may she have the strength to war in Heavenly places, while the angels stand guard. May she rise and fall in the safety of her Father’s arms. May she never doubt the love and faithfulness of the Lord. Let the watchman guard her thoughts and mind, letting nothing that defaces her heart enter. May a spirit of peace and comfort rest in and on her forever. May lives be changed because of her love and dedication to the Father. Lord, would you have your way in her life, giving her all she needs for life and Godliness.

My dear Maureen- be blessed richly today. You are a world changer.

 

Blessings,

mel

 

What I have learned from my children

I have learned so much since having children, some about my own parents, some about God, some about grace and so much has been love.

I learned that love truly is unconditional.

I think until you have children you don’t realize that your love has conditions. You believe you love regardless of the circumstances- but we don’t. We walk away from people who hurt us, we turn our backs when our portion of grace has run out. We destroy memories and moments shared with the people who are no longer in our lives; we are conditional. Nothing can cause me to stop loving my child. No action, choice, sin, disagreement could make my love for Loralei or Cash diminish.

EVER.

 

I learned that I don’t know as much as I thought I did.

Remember when your parents tried to tell you something, and you were bound and determined to figure it out or do it yourself? Yep. I remember doing things like that. I thought I knew. I genuinely always believed they were wrong. They weren’t, and now that I sit in that same seat, I just want to help them and teach them, but they “already know.”

 

I learned that when I have given the last bit of my patience to them, the Lord renews it and allows me to love on them.

When really what is going through my mind, isn’t so loving. When the Hulk smash moments come and for me- they do, I am able to tell them, “mommy isn’t perfect, she messes up and then she says she is sorry.”

 

I learned that I am sorry, goes miles and miles in depositing trust into our relationship.

When I acknowledge my errors, I teach them that they will be loved and forgiven when they make errors.

 

I learned that they will be what I am, not what I say.

This one takes my breath away, because I still don’t have it all together. I am still a broken mess, a wounded and hurt woman, who has years of heartache stored up, kept tightly within the confines of my heart and when even a small portion escapes, the great pain I feel drip drops onto their tiny heads. I know that until I am truly broken and give every secret place to God, I will continue to rain my pain, instead of my joy upon them.

I always thought that the secret places people talked about were places that people tried to hide from God, but I now see that is it actually the places that have such hurt, and anguish that you don’t bring it to light because of how incredibly painful it would be for that thing to be dealt with.

I have learned that it MUST be dealt with, for me, this agony could render me helpless. It is frightening and yet, because of the unconditional, incredible love I have for the two young souls under my authority, I must face and conquer what plagues me. I must allow the Lord to mold those hurts from something painful and ugly, into something joyful and beautiful.

It is no wonder that Christians who fall away from their love of Christ during their Young adult years, come running back to Him when they have new responsibilities depending on them- new little and helpless people depending on them. We run back, because HE is THE WAY, THE TRUTH, and THE LIFE. FOREVER.

This is what I have learned in the last 9 years… I can only imagine what the next 9 will hold.

 

Blessings,

mel

 

Mom Fails

I have been looking through pictures for a few weeks… and feel almost as though I missed all of the times I was taking pictures- as I looked back I really began thinking about who and what I am as a mother- and I thought I would share my epic Mom Fails with you. You aren’t alone. You aren’t the only mom who thought things would go one way and they swung wide in the other direction. You are the  one the Lord gave your children. He saw beyond what you could see, and whatever the circumstances- He is prepared to strengthen you as a mother and give you wisdom for your children- specifically.

 

Mom Fail # 1- I rarely- if ever take pictures at Birthday Parties.

  • Yes, I know that they will want pictures of these special days- and that is why God gave them grandparents, aunts and Uncles… : ) Thank You Aunt Lindsey for documenting that I did have Birthday Parties for them.

 

Mom Fail # 2- I am so easily distracted by other things, that I don’t always feel the gentle tapping on my arm or leg… and in a moment of frustration- turn to face them with my annoyed face.

  • I know I’m not perfect- but I hate that they know it too.

 

Mom Fail # 3- Letting the kids leave the house in Mismatching clothes.

  • Yes- I know I should have their clothes laid out- but I am so glad to see their sweet smiles when they put on their clothes and walk out looking like Kings and Queens in their mismatching both color and season outfits. They are adorable. I know other people must think- does she not care??? (I don’t. I really really don’t. I much prefer their sweet smiles and genuine hearts to looking the part without any of the heart!)

Mom Fail # 4- Thinking I was going to be such an incredible mom, and then realizing that I am not an incredible mom.

  • I know that dreams of grandeur rarely come true, but I really believed this one would be everything I thought. I love being a mom- I just never realized I would be a working mom. It’s so difficult to have your children molded by everyone they meet and spend time with; and then when you get home to them- you get to start all over… every single day. I didn’t know that I would have moments where I would just cry in defeat- thinking I won’t really measure up to other mom who have it all together. I didn’t know how alone I would feel disciplining our children- because Tim and I come from such different backgrounds. I didn’t know, I could love it so very much and cry anew each month when that dream of having another awesome child won’t come true. At the end of everyday, I have to acknowledge that I am me, and only God in His awesomeness can change my inner character until I resemble the mother that I dream of being.

Mom Fail # 5- Realizing that when they were born- I had to give them back to the One that gave them to me.

  • Watching your children try new things is hard- there is fear and anticipation, joy and concern. They will get hurt, and I am powerless to stop most of those hurts. Giving them up is hard, but if I want them to succeed with the life the Lord has for them, I can only house them like a wounded/ baby bird, and trust that the one who has His eye on the sparrow, would not let me little ones out of His sight.

I have learned in the last 9 years, that I am nothing I thought I would be- but also- that my children, didn’t have a preconception of who their mother and father would be- so even when I feel I am disappointing their standard, they can only compare having me- to me. I can either become a better mother or a worse mother based on the standard I have set for them. How I long to be the best momma I can be for them- because I so dearly love them.

Blessings!

mel

 

Amazing

I look around me, at everything that exists in the World we live in and while chaos seems to reign, there is an inner peace that just says, “Amazing”. Everything, every person He creates is Amazing.

Loralei has so many questions about being a lady. Things that I am certain I didn’t learn at her age, but things that society has forced my hand on. I answer honestly and attempt to not be embarrassed as I do. If I am embarrassed she will be embarrassed when the real questions of moral value come in.

She is 8. She is wonderfully innocent. Completely oblivious to most things other children her age get. It leaves me feeling unbalanced. Wanting her to “get those things”, yet, wanting her to stay innocent, and oblivious as long as she can. She asked some questions this week that made me say, “Let’s talk”. I want more than anything for Tim and I to be a moral compass- not the moral compass-because the standard is not us, or our beliefs, but the life of Jesus, displayed beautifully in His word and on the cross. I want her to understand her body’s functionality, but also the spirit that is within, that guides and demonstrates His love for her, His promises and His truth, His values. I want her body to know innocence until the Lord himself places her hand in that of her Beloved’s; the one created long ago in the heavenlies for her.

When she questions I answer, and everytime while I explain, I am reminded myself of how amazing our God is. To create our bodies exactly as He did. That the Earth itself is a habitable place for us functioning exactly as we are. He is amazing- the earth and it’s people, troubled yet beautiful…they are amazing; they are desired by the heart of a Father, and despite the pain here, His amazing works are everywhere surrounding us on mundane and glorious days.

He made you to be Amazing- don’t let something or someone cause you to miss His purpose for YOU.

You are destined to leave a mark on the world- let that mark be Amazing.

Blessings,

mel

 

Instincts & Wisdom

Instinct-

: a way of behaving, thinking, or feeling that is not learned : a natural desire or tendency that makes you want to act in a particular way

: something you know without learning it or thinking about it

: a natural ability

Is it a bird? A plane? A super Cash?

Is it a bird? A plane? A super Cash?

I really love this definition. All of them, bu mostly the 1st one for this discussion.

My son- I talk about him all the time, I know. Cash is an adventurer. He is a David of the Bible. He is strong, confident and incredibly sensitive to those around him. He would grab a sling and a stone in a second. David had a slightly better advantage than our Cash. David was visual, we learned that in his fall with Bathsheba- terrible how 1 wrong act can define to generations behind you; we use David to teach bravery to children and weakness to men and women, but David lived in times before media was constantly in your face.

David had to go out of his way to sin sexually, while my son turns on a t.v., uses a cell phone or computer and will be inundated with visual stimulation he isn’t even able to comprehend yet. Cash wants to please the Lord, He brings excellence with him wherever he goes, yet I know, that should he continue without intervention in this society as it is, he will believe that homosexuality is something you are born with instead of a sin you choose. He will learn that he is a sexual creature and that no door is closed to him, he will be convinced that sin is not sin, just some choices that didn’t always have great results.

Cash won’t continue without intervention, we will not allow him too. He will know that all he has and all he does are his father’s and mine to go through. There is no privacy outside of showering and changing your clothing in our home. I grew up knowing my mom and dad, and then Chris could go through ANYTHING I had at anytime. Period. I had no desire to attempt to hide anything from them and there were very few times that Keith attempted to either. We knew, if it was in their home, it was theirs. I had so many friends who either had parents so disconnected from them that they could do anything they wanted anyway and others who flat out lied, and lived separate lives in front of their parents. Transparency is key!

Parents- you better know that you know that you KNOW your children. They need you to be in their business, completely “up in their grill”, they are desperately seeking attention, and if they aren’t getting yours, I guarantee they are getting someones. A little secret, they want you in their business. They want you to lay down boundaries, they want to know where the lines are, they want you to say no, when every friends parents have said yes. Its’ easier for them to have your no, than acknowledge they aren’t comfortable doing certain things with their friends.

In no way am I saying they will like you for this time of their lives. The good news- you weren’t created to be their friend- you are their guardian, their protector, the one the Lord determined for you to be. When they become adults- true adults around 24-25, you can have your friendship with them, while they are raising their children, they will come to you; they will look to the one who protected them to teach them how to protect the people they love the most; their children.

Cash is an adventurer. He is going to go on so many adventures and I won’t be able to go with him, he is going to travel the world, make friends, be a husband, and a father. I pray that the Lord will give me wisdom beyond my years to make him into a man worthy of his wife, and his children. That he will know true transparency and never want to live a hidden life. A false life, but instead with his eyes wide open declare with word and action that he is a follower of the Most High God. He is a child of the Great I AM. He is a gift to me, and this parenting thing is so much harder than I thought it would be, the little secrets, the small but real lies and shame begin now. The need to wear a mask has begun; I can only pray that the Lord will prepare us to guard this new generation surrounded by sin, and give them the foot up they need to make this life, everything He desires for it to be. His instincts are incredible already, he senses things that blow my mind. Every child is born into a sinful world, and the instincts within battle. Make sure you are refereeing their battles, so that they will not be in the ring alone.

Blessings,

mel