Tag Archives: children

Rejoicing in the day-to-day

Boy!

This was a long time ago.

I ran across this while searching for something else.

So many memories return with a look at our girls grown big before they were large.

How does it happen so fast?

You simply try to deal with life day in and day out while the miracle of childhood turns into the blessings of adulthood.

And suddenly:

Those tiny fingers and messy heads and snuggly cuddly bodies have stretched out.

You look and see not a child.

And it’s a common phenomenon.

On Saturday we traveled to a wedding ceremony for a man who we used to know as a little boy.

He too stretched out and changed in the day-to-day growth of children.

But I haven’t forgotten the little boy that he once was.

My voice was absent as I hugged him, all polished and ready for this major life change.

But he looked down on this tiny lady who loves him and said, “I love you”.

I signed, “I love you” hugged him again and let him return to his duties.

What a joy!

To daily walk in this miracle of children growing into men and women.

Only God could come up with such a wonderful blessing as babies to child to adult.

What an incredible honor to have years of daily opportunities to instill character into the future generation.

Of course we can only do that through Jesus.

He’s the One who guides, leads, and directs us, we simply have the privilege of holding, comforting, caring, and training those littles He for so brief a time.

And He adds the blessings of loving other littles too.

Children of our friends or church family.

Neighborhood children or those I was blessed to work with.

So many opportunities to share Jesus with those who have yet to leave childhood behind.

As I cherish memories of my children’s childhood, I praise God for the day-to-day.

Praising Him for today and all those which have come before.

Psalm 35:28 KJV — And my tongue shall speak of thy righteousness and of thy praise all the day long.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You so much for today! Thank You for all the days we have shared with our children and with others. Thank You for pouring into our lives. Please continue to guide, direct, and teach us as we purpose to do the same with our remaining two who still live with us. Lord, please shine Your truth into other parents, that they might use these precious years of childhood to raise amazing adults. Thank You for Your love of children. Thank You for Your love of each one of us. Thank You for all You are doing day-to-day in our lives. We love You, Jesus. Amen.

Answering the tough questions

It was obvious something was on her mind.

So, instead of just ignoring it and going to bed, I asked what was wrong.

It took a little bit of conversation to uncover the issue.

“Mom, I just can’t deal with the possibility of you dieing. Not again, not right now.– Mom, I need you too much.”

Words can’t express the emotion we both were feeling at this juncture.

“Honey, you have to let go of me and cling to the Lord.”

“Mom, are we going to make it?”

This isn’t the kind of question you handle flippantly.

Because anyone who has lost a loved one knows, you are never the same after the loss.

Of course my heart hurts for my daughter.

Of all the things which have been difficult during this illness, watching my family watch me struggle has hurt most.

But God is so good!

He already had an answer ready for this really tough question.

“I don’t know what is going to happen. But God has all of our days in His hands. None of us knows when our last day is, but we can trust God. We can do the task at hand and worship and praise Him, for every day is a gift from God.”

“I want you to remember that heaven is a real place. And it’s incredible!”

Our conversation continued a short while longer, but it was obvious the question had been answered.

Sure, we will probably need to chat again, covering the same ground.

But that’s true for all of us.

No one is immune to fear, doubt, or worry.

But Jesus and His Holy Word are the cure.

I praise God for tough questions.

They give me the opportunity to pour into the lives of our children.

And I was blessed to be able to remind our daughter of something I’ve said many times.

“I don’t like the fact that you and your siblings have to walk through this with me and I know it must be scary and hard. I can’t help but think that God has a plan for this. He is going to use it in your life. Somehow He will use it, maybe to prepare you for the future He has for you.”

The same is true for all of us.

Whatever we are going through God can use it.

He can use it for His good in the lives of others.

Isaiah 61:3 NKJV — To console those who mourn in Zion, To give them beauty for ashes, The oil of joy for mourning, The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; That they may be called trees of righteousness, The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified.”

I don’t know what may occur.

But I want to bring glory to the Lord Jesus.

May He be glorified!

Scripture memorization

Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful;
Psalms 1:1 NKJV
https://bible.com/bible/114/psa.1.1.NKJV

It began after watching The Chosen.

I had been struck by the number of people who could quote God’s Word.

Then it hit me.

They had to.

Being able to read wasn’t common, books weren’t easily available, so if they wanted to remember what God’s Word said, they had to memorize.

So, I picked out Psalm 100, and told the kids we were going to start memorizing the Bible together.

They are so much better at it than I am.

We’ve only been at it a little while, but the kids have Psalm 100 and Psalm 1 down.

We are going to move on to Psalm 15.

I’m encouraged that even a small amount of scripture memorization will benefit all of us.

I want God’s Word in our hearts.

I often pray that for our family.

What better way to get it there than to purposefully add it?

Of course it’s not about adding to our knowledge to puff up our pride, nor is it a way to punish or force our family into religion.

It’s instead like falling in love.

When I began to date my husband, I wanted to learn all I could about him.

After we were married I wanted to be familiar with his family and took the time to memorize the names of his mother’s siblings, all nine of them.

It’s the same thing with scripture memorization.

I want to know all I can about Jesus.

I want our children to constantly be learning about Him too.

And this is just another opportunity to know and love Him all the more.

My heart resonates with the psalmist:

Psalm 119:10 NKJV — With my whole heart I have sought You; Oh, let me not wander from Your commandments!

It’s so much easier to follow Jesus and His commandments if I know them and understand what they are teaching.

And I won’t give up Bible study or solid Biblical teaching, instead it’s just adding another layer of sweetness.

For that’s what knowing Jesus more truly is.

I praise God for His Word and I cherish this opportunity.

Psalm 119:16 NKJV — I will delight myself in Your statutes; I will not forget Your word.

“May it be so Lord!”

“God’s creation is beautiful!”

Earlier this week, I couldn’t keep from heading outside to weed the flower bed.

Of course I’m not really supposed to be taxing myself with yard work so I told Jase he was coming along.

I expressed my joy at how well the tulips he planted were doing.

Busily pulling weeds, I began explaining the difference between them and the plants coming up.

As my energy began to wane, I stopped talking.

My eyes were on the weeds, all around me.

My mind was warning me not to overdo it.

The task started to feel over bearing.

Silence settled around us as I kept working and wondering how much more I should do.

Then his voice broke the air.

“God’s creation really is beautiful!”

“Isn’t it, Mom!”

I was startled.

I looked up.

His face was aglow with wonder and appreciation.

His eyes were looking above me, focused on the two blooming trees in the neighbor’s yard.

They’re bountifully blossomed in pink.

Showing the glory and creativity of our Master in their tiny bright flowers.

He wasn’t hindered by the weeds.

He was able to lift his eyes to the beauty above us.

What a wonderful reminder!

Our son, one of God’s creations, rejoicing in another of God’s creations.

Jesus said it best:

Matthew 21:16b NKJV …And Jesus said to them, “Yes. Have you never read, ‘Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants You have perfected praise’?”

Our son was an example to me.

It’s important to look for God’s beauty and not get bogged down by the weeds.

The gift of prayer

One of the pictures we took today.

Ever since the wonderful news was given, I’ve been praying.

When they told me that they were expecting a baby, all I could do was hug her and cry.

This has been a long awaited child.

We are all thrilled.

My prayers have been for the pregnancy, the health of both, and the blessings of God.

Each child is so unique.

Every single one a miracle.

All children need love, training, boundaries, and so much more.

With such incredible blessing there is equally important responsibility.

The weight of such can be overwhelming when your arms cradle your first child.

Yet, it is a wonderful weight.

It brings knowledge and understanding that on our own we could mess up badly this small life.

But through Jesus, we can find all the answers.

He gave us a wonderful guide book, the Bible.

And He is right there, to walk through it all.

These and many other things have been in my prayers for this family who are adding this long desired child to their home.

When I was praying for wisdom on what I should make this new little one, the Lord spoke clearly to my heart.

A book of prayers.

At first I felt a bit confused.

“You want me to write a book of prayers?”

Add pictures.

I knew exactly what the Lord was asking me to do.

Honestly, I had doubts.

How long will this take?

Where is my camera?

Do I have energy to add another project to my day?

Trust Me.

Walking in faith, I got up to look for my camera.

My kids were curious as to what I was doing, but once explained, they joined in to help.

I was surprised at how quickly we were able to take pictures.

I was stunned at how fast the layouts were completed.

I’ve been working on it all day, whenever homeschool would allow.

I’m not sure when it will be ready, but I’m trusting God it will be in time for the baby shower.

Honestly, I’m humbled by God’s love and mercy.

I’d never have even attempted such a thing, if He had not spoken to my heart.

And now I can hardly wait to see it completed.

What a pleasure to give the gift of prayer.

Both in act and in words.

Praise the Lord!

Dependant

He’s legally our dependant.

And in many ways he depends upon us to provide for his needs.

Yet, I was very aware yesterday (it was his birthday) he may not always be.

Although his life is vastly different from the average, he’s made some astonishing progress.

He’s not going to meet the same milestones as other people do, but I’ve been encouraged lately about his future.

With our move and my health I’ve come to depend upon him for several things.

He takes the trash out and he makes sure the cans are on the curb Monday morning.

He vacuums.

He does nearly all my yard work.

He helps in the kitchen or tidying up around the house.

It’s been an incredible blessing.

I depend upon him for his love and kindness.

He’s often ready to make me a cup of tea or sometimes he just holds my hand when I don’t feel well.

He goes with me to the allergist to get my shots.

I asked him yesterday if he wanted to go.

He looked at me a little surprised.

“I’ve never missed one yet.”

He’s very good at remembering landmarks and notices details faster than I do.

Which has become great when driving in unfamiliar areas.

I’m a country girl and this town driving has me often lost.

He prays for me.

His eagerness to learn about God makes Bible study a joy.

It’s been such a blessing to have all of our children.

Each one is special and valuable.

Each one so very precious.

All of them have made personal commitments to follow Jesus and I pray for them daily.

As they grow and leave home (I’m down to only two at home!) I’m so thankful for the time I’ve had.

Psalm 127:3 KJV — Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.

It’s so true!

I praise God for our dependants, may they always be dependent upon Jesus.

They’re off!

They’ve been best friends for ten years.

This morning I dropped them off at the airport.

Their first step in an adventure of time devoted to God.

Since travel and serving Jesus rarely goes as planned, I expect some things to change, but their main reason for this trip is to volunteer in a cafe owned and operated by a church.

August is holiday season and it’s more difficult for the church to find volunteers for keeping the cafe open.

I look forward to hearing all the Lord does.

My prayer for both girls is to shine the light of Jesus Christ wherever they are and to draw closer to Him each day.

As Jase and I walked back to the car he looked at me.

“Mom, there’s no crying,” he said gently.

Then he put his arm around me and reminded me they were going to be fine.

I just smiled.

I wasn’t tearing up because of fear of their safety.

It was the realization that they are children no longer.

My Mommy heart just doesn’t want the childhood chapter to close, but my Lord reminds me:

As one chapter ends another begins.

I wonder what amazing blessings, miracles, and acts of God will occur in this chapter?

Understood

image

These are our beautiful kids.

Our oldest is in college now.

Our middle girl is in high school.

Life seems to move on whether I like it or not.

As I’ve been walking with the Lord this school year I’ve had many surprises.

There have been some sorrows as well.

Yet the thing which caused the biggest impact was the turn our kids’ education has taken.

We’ve been aware that our three younger children all have learning disabilities.

Yet God had a change, He was guiding me to teach my kids, myself.

No, I’m not a prefessional in learning disabilities, but I have been being trained by others and the Lord on how to teach my children.

It has been an exciting time.

I continue to look forward to all that the Lord is going to do.

And He’s given me so much help.

I have my wonderful husband who supports me 100%.

I have a tutor in a nearby town.

I have our public school Special Education teacher and his aids.

I have our public school’s speech teachers.

I have our Christian school teachers.

It is truly amazing how God has provided so much for our children.

What a wonderful God!

He’s love and provision astounds me.

I can’t say I’ve always looked at the circumstances this way.

I have had moments of selfish motives when I wished God would just change my kids so they could learn like everyone else.

There are times I’ve asked Him, “Why does it have to be so hard?!” “Why do my kids have to struggle? ”

And of course they have asked me the same questions.

I love the answer.

“Because you can’t see how all this is working together for their good.”

And in my heart I know it is working together for my good as well.

If everything came easy I would never learn try, perseverance, or even compassion.

If struggles in childhood didn’t come how would my children learn how to deal with the real world?

If God didn’t create us each individual where would creativity and expression come from?

God didn’t create only yellow.

He created a vast rainbow of colors.

God didn’t create one person with a set of blue prints to make the same model over and over.

He creates each person beautifully unique and gifted.

It’s all about understanding He has a plan, a purpose, even for the hard things.

I know I’m not completely able to grasp it all.

I know I’m unable to see exactly what He’s doing.

But I also know,
He has a plan and is working it out daily.

Even my kids can look at our lives and see it.

For us our comfort resides in God.

His love for us.

His provision for our needs.

His ultimately in control.

We can smile and say:
“Understood!”

Again

image

The end of the season.

In this case,
middle school track.

Tuesday was a cool and at times wet afternoon as we stood watching the events of the District track meet.

God blessed our girl as she competed.

She was able to take eighth and second place in the 200 and 400 meters.

Although some of the season was extremely difficult for her,  she was able to rise beyond the circumstances.

As the track meet came to a close my focus was more on the warmth of the car and the meal awaiting me, but our daughter caught my attention.

“Well, it’s over. I won’t run again until next year. ”

For me, next year is way too soon.

For her, it’s an extremely long wait till she can again do something she loves.

How easy it is to focus on my own wants,  desires, needs.

During the entire afternoon I never once prayed for our daughter to be able to make the most of her last track meet.

I prayed for ability to do her best.
I prayed for her to be a good sportsman.
I prayed for her to not be injured.

I left out any thought or concern for how she felt about it all.

As parents it can be easy to view everything from the adult perspective of how the child or children reflect on the parent.

Yet God doesn’t call us to raise our children for how good it makes us look.

He calls us to be the example of Christ to our children; teaching them in the Word and guiding them into lives which are focused on bringing glory to God through daily association and relationship.

To do this means we first have our own personal relationship with Him and secondly to know our children as individuals.

Both of these requires time.

So again I have been reminded to look into,  spend time listening to,  and think about the person who is also our middle daughter.

What does she need today?
How can I bless her?
Where should we go from here?
Does she know she’s loved?
How should I pray for her?

As I seek to answer these questions, I praise God for reminding me,  nothing is wasted when I’m investing in the person who is also our child.