Thursday, September 10, 2009

From Ordinary to Extraordinary

I woke up this morning to see the sun burning a deep orange red. It hung in the sky just long enough for me to stand at my kitchen window amazed at this part of God’s creation. I turned away briefly and when I looked back it took its normal place in the sky with its usual color. From the unexpected to the ordinary.

The past few weeks I haven’t seemed to have the time to write, to read or to reflect. My girls have kept me busy, but that’s not the reason why. Everything is starting to hurt. I’m missing friends more; missing my place in the scheme of things. I don’t think that I ask for a lot. I long for that perfect day- the kind of day where the kids wake up happy having slept well. We spend a peaceful morning reading and singing. Maybe we take a walk and watch the leaves begin to change color. We come home to have lunch, and both girls take a nap. A friend comes over and we sit at the table, drinking coffee and talking while muffins bake in the oven. The girls wake up and we spend the afternoon together playing and getting dinner ready for my love’s eminent return. A nice family meal, an evening walk and time at the park and then some family cuddle time on the couch before they turn in for bed. Finally, my day ends with time alone with my husband. I don’t think I am asking for too much. I don’t want riches, privilege or things; just time with friends and family. What makes me sad is that it seems so out of reach…All I want is the ordinary, but right now the ordinary has turned extraordinary. But the sun in the sky encouraged me. It was God’s message to me to not give up. Just when you think you know what to expect, God gives us something spectacular. Something special. Something out of reach.

Today I am going to expect the extraordinary. One of these days it will happen. He promised.

Thursday, August 6, 2009


I have been staring at a blank screen for some time now, unsure of where, how, or even if I should start. I have never felt so broken. We used to do this intense weekend at church called Encounter. From Friday night to Sunday afternoon it was a time of tearing, ripping, and filling. Somewhere around Saturday evening you think that it can't get any worse. Past hurts, sins, and all the things that we like to hide are brought out to surface to deal with. It is a sickening feeling. But just when you get there, the feeling passes and you are brought to a place of healing and relief. I have that Saturday evening feeling, with no relief in sight. I know God is in the middle of a major work, but it is taking a LONG time! It's like having work done on your teeth and the anesthesia wears out.

I've been reading Joanna Weaver's book, Having a Mary Spirit and I am surprised at how much it is dragging up. I wrote before about trying to figure out who I am at this stage in life. That's just part of it. It's like everything has been ripped away. I'm just trying to get my footing, all while attempting to stop mixing my metaphors.

I had a moment of peace this afternoon. Kathryn asleep in her room. Me sitting in my favorite chair near the windows with the wind blowing in so sweetly. Sophie sleeping on my shoulder. No agendas. No to do lists. Just a mommy moment. Peace. Gratitude.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

The Father's Heart

My sleep was interrupted last night with yelling from outside that appeared to come from the ally. I should be used to street noise by now, but there was something different about it. I had just finished nursing Sophie and I heard glass breaking. There was some argument near the empty lot behind our building. It was clearly escalating and I could swear I heard a baby. I don't want to be one of those city dwellers who ignores the goings on around them so I called 911. I stayed near the back window and continued watching and praying. There were several people involved and it just kept getting worse and worse. It looked as if someone was stomping on someone else. I called 911 back and told them they better hurry up. Finally several cars responded.

Here's where I know I'm not in Kansas anymore....the police didn't ask me for a statement. They didn't take anyone in. They just sent them on their way.....The mom walking in one direction with her baby in a baby stroller (it was now 2:45 am) and the man who wouldn't let the kid go, in the other. My heart hurt watching that. First, how hardened are we that a violent domestic disagreement doesn't warrant further inspection? I am not proposing that all children be ripped from their famil, but may God's hand of protection be on that precious child who will undoubtedly continue to be witness to violence both verbal and physical.

I stayed up for another hour or so, tossing and turning and praying. My heart was broken watching the altercation. I can only imagine the Father's heart as He watches us.....

Friday, July 31, 2009

Who We Truly Are

I read in some class that not knowing who you are as a person is a sign of mental instability - what a scary thought. That idea has always haunted me. Who am I really? Are the things I like and identify with truly part of my identity? If I would change my mind on what style of clothing I like, or the way I wanted the house decorated, or what kind of music I was into at the time, I would worry that there was something wrong with me. Let's not even consider the big "what am I going to do with the rest of my life" question.

Even now, I wonder if I really know myself. There's a cheesy line in a tourism commercial that says we are most ourselves when we are somewhere new. Given that we recently moved somewhere where we are unknown, I began to think that there may be a little truth to that. A couple weeks ago I was sitting in worship service and the following thought came to me...

Looking back over my life the times I am NOT myself are the times I am not fully surrendered. Only when I allow Christ to fully use me and truly control me do I feel myself. Perhaps I should have figured this out before, but it just struck me today as I took communion. I often feel as if I am lacking self-confidence, but I don't need self- confidence, I need God-confidence - the knowledge that God is guiding our steps and shining His love through us.

So who am I? What is my place in community? I need to find out.