Saturday, April 26, 2014

What happens after Easter...

Now that Easter has past, what happens now?  We remembered His death, so amazing, so sacrificial. Those crosses still sit on our kitchen table.  I'm afraid to take them down for fear I'll forget...  for fear that life will go on and that amazing grace will seem lost.  Sometimes the colors of the world stand out bold and clear while the cross and the tomb that could not hold Him seem dim in the background.

May our children remember that it's more than a story.  It's our reason for living.  It's the daily dying to self so that His glory may be proclaimed.  For us as mothers & fathers, "we look to Jesus not only as our example; we also see that He is our power to love God and our children.  Because Christ has done for us what we could never do for ourselves, with His power we can ask forgiveness of our children when we sin against them, because God in Christ has forgiven us." - Gloria Furman

Let the light never fade.  May we teach our families daily to "love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength... impress them on your children... talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up." All day, every day, everywhere! (Deuteronomy 6:5-7)

Treasure the blessings God has given us!  "Because of the gospel, we can rejoice as we find our hands full of blessings in Jesus, because all we know is grace." - G. Furman

Hold tight to family, yet be willing to let them go.  Savor every moment, every holiday, every phone call, and every picture-taking moment.


"Let the rest of folks go ahead and pack up their Easter decorations and turn the calendar page over and they can roll up the banners and swags but there's this Resurrection People who aren't going back to before and we refuse to live like that stone's been rolled back.  

He is alive and He is risen and I'm going to keep that on the chalkboard and keep saying it over the burnt pots and the overflowing sinks and I'm going to keep singing it like a refrain:  He is Risen Indeed - because I want Him to be risen in me." - Ann Voskamp

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Losing the love...

Some weeks are just harder than others, not visibly to other people, but only known to the ones closest to you.  Humility is a hard dose to take, yet so vital to growth.  

"You have forsaken your first love" (Revelation 2:4) - lost or abandoned your first love, referring to the first commandment to love the Lord your God with all your heart...

Conviction filled me as I realized how often I do that.  I idolize other things before my Lord.  I worship the devotional, the author, the blogger, the newest song, more than our God they are writing about.  

I fail to stop at the instrument without going further to the conductor.  

These instruments are still important.  The fault doesn't lie with them, but instead with the musician.  When I place someone's words, someone's thoughts at a higher level than the origin behind them, then the love is lost.  Let my words not be misunderstood.  I am so thankful for the men and women that God is using daily to help me to grow as a child of God, a friend, a mother, and a wife. There have been many seasons in my life in which I firmly believe God has used the words of others to point my eyes back on Him.  But I also know there have been times in which my eyes fall short and instead of keeping my eyes on the conductor of this amazing piece of music called "life", I focus on others.  I may even idolize them.  

"Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.  This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it:  Love your neighbor as yourself." (Matthew 22:37-39) 

Not always as easy as it sounds.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Aspirations for April...

Can I just start by saying that God is amazing?!  This may seem like nothing to most, but to me, it was kind of cool so I had to share. The other day, on my morning crawl (which has still not reached 4 miles again), I glanced down at this lonely dandelion.  I couldn't help myself in capturing this little weed, front and center on such a gorgeous morning.  When I got home, the verse in II Corinthians came to mind, "So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen.  For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal."  This weed will be gone tomorrow and so will my to-do lists and my monthly aspirations, but God's word will remain, the souls of my family and those around me will remain, and that is where my focus is to be.  Those are the things that will last forever. Then, the very next day when I woke up this verse came to mind again (which is rare for me, considering my horrible memory these days.) But then... (this is the amazing part to me) what was one of the verses in my devotions?  II Corinthians 4:18!  Coincidence?  I don't think so.  That was a God thing.

Reviewing my Musings for March:
1. Teach at least one essential oils class.  Nervous, oh my!
2. Plan (with my older girls) a ballerina/pirate party for my youngest (who is turning 4!!!)
3. Focus on discipling my girls (with an emphasis on Bible memory).
4. Let go of some things of the past... (more may be shared in the future.)
5. Spend as much time outdoors as possible (more bike rides, park visits, picnics, and maybe getting back to running 4 miles again... maybe.)

- Teaching my first essential oils class was terrifying to me.  I'm still learning and researching, so my inadequacies overwhelmed me. Yet God is so good and anything good that came from the class was only from Him.  The time with old and new friends shared over Peppermint Patties and lemon water made it worth it all.

- Sophie's party was a blast!  As usual, I eliminated half of the ideas and expectations I had for the party, but the time spent watching her dance with her sisters, cousins, & friends made the party a success.  Naomi was my planning partner, helping me sew the little tutu's for the garland (which then became doll tutu's), bake the cupcakes, make the frosting, and browse Pinterest for party ideas.  Special times with my little middle!  Chloe took the role of ballet teacher, choosing songs for both ballet and tap, planning steps for each song, and fully embracing the role with great maturity on the day of the party.  I couldn't be more proud of my girls!

- Discipling my girls has been heavy on my heart for a while.  They have worked hard on their verses for Wednesday nights at church (not quite completing all the verses, but we'll keep trying).  But through studying these important scriptures (with the use of the Evangecube), something greater has occurred that Marty and I have been praying for. 

- Little by little, I'm letting go.  

- With our crazy North Carolina weather, we did the best we could getting outside.  It would feel like spring one day, then forecasting snow the next.  I'm looking forward to more walks and trips to the park this month.

Aspirations for April...
1.  Plan a new spring menu (less grains, more veggies & protein).
2.  Point my girls to the real meaning of Easter.
3.  Start every day with a clean kitchen table.
4.  Finish two of the books I'm reading:  Not a Fan by Kyle Idleman & Cleaning House by Kay Wills Wyma.
5.  Truly rest on our little family spring break.