Tuesday, October 7, 2014
Tuesday, October 15, 2013
"I think your sadness encourages you to keep away from one form of worship that sets you free. Kill that."
Whoa. The words sort of crushed my heart and lifted my spirit at the same time- painful truth.
"Why are you down in the dumps, dear soul? Why are you crying the blues? Fix my eyes on God— soon I’ll be praising again. He puts a smile on my face. He’s my God. When my soul is in the dumps, I rehearse everything I know of you, From Jordan depths to Hermon heights, including Mount Mizar. Chaos calls to chaos, to the tune of whitewater rapids. Your breaking surf, your thundering breakers crash and crush me. Then God promises to love me all day, sing songs all through the night! My life is God’s prayer."
Monday, September 30, 2013
It is in this moment that I feel the weight of His hand on my back and a whisper.
Thursday, September 19, 2013
It is in these moments that I despise parenting the most. It's true. Sure, the constant arguing and lack of personal space get uncomfortable, but nothing stings as much as a seemingly magical moment gone awry. I think every parent EVER understands this. Each of us has a rolodex of memories that leave a little to be desired- the special dinner turned toddler freak out, the quality time vacation turned family bonding cotastrophe, quick errands turned three-hour whine fest. It is one of the threads that binds us together.
These moments, all lined up without any of the awesomeness in between can seem like a recipe for crazy, and maybe they are. But these moments also make us. More importantly these moments make our kids. More accurately, our reactions to these moments make our kids. Have you ever stopped to wonder why we find such tiny mishaps so troubling? I know exactly why they get under my skin. It always always always has to do with me. When my idea of how things were supposed to go down gets all messed up, I get all bent out of shape. It goes against what I deeply believe about my life, that it's all about me. Ugh. There, I said it. This is one of those times where Paul's confusing dialogue about doing things that he doesn't want to do and not doing what he does want to do comes into play in my own life. Every single time my kids bust up my dream world with their nonsense I am reminded that the very thing that I am trying to steer them from is what is alive and thriving in my own heart. "Stop fighting. Share. Don't be selfish. Speak kindly. Be pleasant with one another."
My boys will always follow my example before they hear my advice. Until I begin to examine my own motivation, take captive my own thoughts, release my mind to God's transformation, and mirror my heart to the heart of my Jesus, I will continue walking away from these encounters with an ache in my spirit.
Inventory your reactions and learn something about yourself today.
These little people are the leaders of the tomorrow. The way we lead them is shaping the way they will lead others. Youch.
Tuesday, August 27, 2013
Have you ever made a change, a huge God-said-it-beyond-a-shadow-of doubt change and then freaked out? Yeah... that.
Homeschooling. It is the most misunderstood thing on the planet, by those that scoff and love alike. I have a handful of friends that still believe that homeschoolers are nerdy and unsocialized and wear strange clothes. I have another set of friends that think "your husband must makes loads of money if you can afford to stay home and do that." Then there's the friends that smile and nod on the outside but on the inside they think I am overprotective and only homeschool because I am worried about peer pressure or sex education. And then there's a whole group of folks that think they totally get "why" I homeschool. Truth is, probably none of them do.
If I am completely honest, I have to admit that I am simply doing what I was told. Obedience. It goes a long way these days. My heart does break for the moral decline of our society and in turn our schools. I do hate watching our kids slip through the cracks barely making it through their school years, jaded and not thriving. But my position is not mine to defend. I heard the Lord loud and clear on this issue. I have to be the one to pour my heart and soul into my kids 24/7. I have to do it because He asked me to. There are lessons to be learned here for me and for them. I am learning to trust God's heart, His character, even when I can't make sense of it in my own mind. That's my heart on the good days.
What about the hard days? What about the days when I think I will go crazy if I have to do one more retrace of my steps just to remember where I put down the last locate-able eraser in the house? What about the days when I want to walk down two blocks to the elementary school and tearfully beg them to accept my children back? What about the days when one of the kids finds me in the kitchen scooping Nutella from the jar with my finger because all available spoons are in the sink and washing one would just be too much? What about the days when I just want to quit?
I don't resent the hard days. I can't. I do not like them, but they are vital. Why?? Because it is on these days that I press in hard to Jesus and lean on Him completely. It is on these days that I know for certain that I am blazing a trail that is God-inspired and not Bekah-inspired. If it were my own convictions, my own plan, that put me here it would be easy to quit. But the faithful nudging of my Dad keeps me focused.
Nothing amazing comes easy. Nothing. So, yes, maybe once a week I fill the shoes of awesome homeschool mom that has it all together, if I'm lucky. The rest of the time I am just a tool. And I am ok with that. I need to be used. In fact, I was made for it. And so were you.
Hope this finds you embracing usefulness and everyday graces. Happy Wednesday.
I have been overhearing conversations lately about the way I dress. I am not joking. I have literally walked up on or turned around and found folks talking about my color choices atleast 4 times in the last two weeks. That would be enough to make some women retreat to hiding. It has been in response to yellow shorts and coral stripes and teal pop Toms and coral skinnies, turquoise tank tops, plaid button ups, and big rose stud earings... a few of my favorite things. This isn't a post about insecurity or gossip or comparison. This is not a post about what-not-to-wear. In actuality not a single person has said anything ugly. It has been more "How are you wearing that and pulling it off?? It doesn't match at all." Either way I am actually compelled to share the madness behind the shift in my own heart. I pray it is liberating for someone.
If you have been around for some time and know the me of even 5 years ago, then the process may have been so gradual that you didn't notice. But if I were to show you a comparison in photos, I think people would be surprised.
I used to be neutral obsessed. My closet looked like a brown paint sample strip. I even sorted my clothes by color and they basically ranged from white/khaki to dark espresso/ black. All of the walls in our house were coffee shades. And our furniture was khaki and dark espresso. Brown made me comfortable. I lived by the rule "stick with neutrals and accent with color." It is a great rule, but I often limited my color accents to barely shades of green and blue.
[Insert disclaimer: if you love neutrals, this isnt an attack against you, just an observation of myself.]
I was playing it safe. There is a crazy comfort in what you've always known, what comes natural. But then there's those things that call to us from deep inside- wishes, hopes, dreams, fresh perspective. Those things are color for me. Freedom is color. Jesus is color. God's presence is color. For me, as I started really chasing God, loving Him in the quiet and stillness and also the hurried craziness of life, I started seeing the colorful reality of the everyday.
I am a quilter, a lazy self-taught one, but I love it. I love it for the colors. I had a friend tell me "I don't get quilts. I don't get the patterns and the mixed matched colors." Gasp. I realized that all the things she disliked were all the things that I loved.
It was in that moment that I saw the weight and reality of what God was working in my heart. As I pray for more creativity and more vision and more Holy Spirit goodness, I get louder and crazier and more colorful. And it's ok. Because I am not afraid of color anymore. Today I wear lots of color, and our home is full of all the colors that make us happy. There's hardly a brown thing in sight, and we love it.
I am free. I refuse to play it safe. After all, the only safe I need is Jesus.
Hope this finds you changing and embracing. Happy Tuesday.