30 July 2013

summer

We are exactly one week out from the first day of school.

Oh, and this is Wilson's last year of elementary school {if God keeps us in the area}.  Tears have been shed over this.  {Wilson has already stated that he prefers if I do NOT accompany him to his classroom on the first day of school.}

This summer has just been a sweet gift.  Perfect?  No.  But just extraordinarily pleasant.  I think it helps that last summer was pretty much exactly the opposite.  I knew it was hard then, heavy and lonely and just plain exhausting.

I really didn't know what to expect of this summer.  I made a sketchy-plan (sketchy = pencil lines; not sketchy = shady characters).  I tried to be a bit more intentional with some things that I let slide last year.  I begged God to make this time sweet.  And He did.  More so than I could have imagined.


When you open your hands to offer to God what you have, it is thrilling to watch Him fill them back up with the most lovely gifts.  He did this over and over throughout these summer days.

If I am honest, I don't want it to end.

I like the little rhythm we created these lazy summer days.  I even like the extra messes from exploring new things.

In looking at the snapshots, I am reminded that He gives good gifts...in His time.  It would be silly to not expect Him to be able to do the same as the school year begins.

I am trying to be deliberate with these last few lazy days, soaking up the precious time.

I am also asking God to help me pry my hands open to offer this school year to Him.  I know He will fill it with better things than I can imagine.  If only I wait for Him and trust His wisdom.

"For the LORD God is a sun and shield; The LORD gives grace and glory; No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly."  Psalm 84 11

from Sara Groves, "Open My Hands".


26 July 2013

five minute friday :: broken

I'm writing with a timer set for five minutes, the writing prompt this week is broken.

GO

Last night I saw a little heart break.  Daddy was at men's bible study so while I slathered the boys in lotion (just the youngest two) and got their jammies on, we talked about where Daddy was.  Because normally, he's on the floor with me for this part - and some nights its just him doing it.  So when he's not there, he is missed.

We talked about how Daddy loves God and he goes to bible study to learn more about Him.  And that it helps Daddy love us better.  I told the boys, in toddler language, that we could pray for the job God is getting ready for Daddy.

I don't know what I said, but the saddest little cry came from Lincoln, "MY DADDY!"  Just over and over, "my daddy, my daddy!"

I reassured him that Daddy would ALWAYS be his daddy - no matter what his new job might be. "Daddy will always always always be your daddy, Lincoln."

When we came downstairs I had to retell a bit of the story to the big boys because Lincoln & Franklin were repeating parts of our talk, like, "Love God" and what not.  When I told the part about Lincoln getting upset, he lost it.

Bawled.  Heart broken.  "My daddy!"  All over again, but louder and sadder this time.

I don't know what triggered this deep fear in this little heart, but I know it was real.  Even there was nothing about it to understand, I knew his little heart was broken at the thought of his daddy getting a new job that didn't involve him being his daddy.

Daddy will always always always be YOUR Daddy.

done.  

I feel like there is so much more to say about this.  But I am a rule follower.  I am ignoring the grammatical errors up there, and linking this up anyway.


Lisa Jo's blog is down because of that fantastically, awesome post she wrote about her husband this week.  It was shared around so much that it made her blog crash.  So she's hosting the link-up on FB today.  You can find her here, if you want to check it out.

22 July 2013

worship

Yesterday was a work day for Brad.  I still dislike that he has to work some Sundays, but when I remind myself that I went to church solo for 15 months of Sundays, it doesn't seem nearly so bad.

There was something dynamic in our worship yesterday.  Or at least it seemed like it to me.  I do adore belting out the songs at our church.  In my mind, I feel like I can sing as loudly as I want and nobody else can hear me, which allows me to sing as loudly as possible.  The lead-worshipper did say yesterday that he was tempted to hand his microphone to a guy in the front row because he was singing so loudly, so perhaps my assessment of "nobody else can hear me" is off.  I'll just keep on belting out the songs.

As I sang and we collectively poured our worship offerings before God I just felt this peace.  The kind that can't be shaken.  The kind that says no matter where we go, God is already there.  No matter what job Brad gets, God is already preparing him for it.  No matter which school district we live in, our God will be there too.  An unshakable peace.  In those peace-filled moments, my thoughts led me to some of the things I am praying for others too... that this peace would be theirs even in the middle of the circumstances they encounter.

We sang a new-to-our-church song, which has long been belted out in my car, living room, and even on my street while I run.  I awoke with it in my mind again this morning.

I had intended to type up this little post this morning, but I could not figure out how to pair the keyboard to my iPad [is that even the right way to say that?] {I don't dare turn on the desktop in the quiet hours while boys still sleep!}  I played the song on repeat instead, and as I reflected on the lyrics it turns out God had some things He needed to reveal to me first.  I was a little caught off guard by a disconnect that God pointed out to me.

You see, while we are waiting for the Army to decide how much longer Brad will be in; Brad is hustling to search out job listings and tweaking his resume.  All the while, I stand by and say "wherever!"  And if I am being honest, I am a little proud of my willingness to go wherever.  There I said it.  And that's not even the worst part.  Gah.

Here comes the disconnect.  Brad found a job posting last night.  He printed it out and brought it to me.  It is basically a job description of all of his skills.  It is almost as if the person that wrote the job description had watched Brad at work for the last seven years.  I could barely finish reading it because my jaw was hanging open.

When we figured out where it was located.  My "wherever!" attitude was nowhere to be found.  Instead, I was shocked at my first thoughts about the location.  And embarrassed.

God was not surprised.  Not even a little.  He knows my heart.  And He ever-so-gently reminds me of this often.  Today, He is calling out my "wherever!"  I can't begin to predict if Brad will get this job and we'll move to the state of Washington someday.  It doesn't even matter today if that will happen.

The important thing is that God is correcting me in a grace-filled-peace-giving way.  All I can do, is humbly ask Him to prepare my heart and continue to call me out in the places that I haven't surrendered as much as I thought I had.  I don't just want to sing of surrender and feel peace while the music plays.  I want to live it out.  I truly want my "wherever!" to be honest.  He will continue to refine my heart in this process.  There is so much work to be done, I'm so grateful that He is so faithful.

"I lay me down.  I'm not my own. I belong to you alone.  Lay me down.  Lay me down.
Oh! Hand on my heart, this much is true; there's no life apart from you.  Lay me down."

20 July 2013

photo scavenger hunt fun!

So you might have noticed the little "I blog for Compassion" button over there on the right side bar.  Its a recent addition to the blog, although I've posted a few times over the years about our involvement with Compassion International.  By signing up, I basically volunteered to write about prompts that will be emailed out.

So this is the first "officially prompted" Compassion International post!  Fun, huh?

Even more fun is that the prompt was basically to read about the Photo Scavenger Hunt that Compassion International is hosting for the remainder of the month of July.  Read here to find out all about it.  You can totally join in on the fun.

Its a way to celebrate their two year mark on instagram.  I wanted to wait to participate until Wilson and Walker got back from Camp Barbie.  I think they will have fun searching for the items to photograph with me. Of course, one of the items was easy enough for me to just turn and snap right here.




Oh, and did I mention there are prizes?  You know me with prizes, right?  Check them out! Giddy.  I tell you.

We love the work that Compassion International is doing around the world.  It is an honor to play a small part in their bigger work.  By supporting a child, we are helping to keep his birth family intact.  I know its hard to imagine from the comforts of North America, but the depth of poverty in some parts of the world is a major factor in the orphan crisis.  Compassion International does an outstanding job of releasing children from poverty in Jesus' name!  They take a holistic approach and the benefits that children in their programs receive end up helping their entire family to some extent.  Their approach has even been researched by a third party with outstanding results... read more here.

I could go on and on.  If you have questions, please do not hesitate to ask.  I believe with all my heart that Compassion is in the business of orphan-prevention.  It is a critical piece to the larger Orphan Care movement.

18 July 2013

ten!

All the cliches about how fast time flies seriously don't really capture it. 

Unbelievable.  Truly.

Here you are, ten years old.  I am ever impressed with the person you are becoming.  I rarely catch glimpses of "baby-Wilson" anymore, rather every once in awhile I catch a glimpse of the man you are becoming.  As your mother, it makes me both proud and terrified.

I still can't believe we let you play tackle football last year.  You ran onto that field fearless...oblivious to the size discrepancies between you and 90% of the other players.  You worked hard.  At practice and at games.  I think I knew this before but you proved it during football.  You have no quit in you.

School was a little bit tougher this year, not the work so much as the environment.  I know it wasn't always easy.  The thing that impressed me though, was that you were able to make the best of it anyway.   You came up with some of the sweetest adjectives to describe your teacher and I know you meant it.  It is a gift to be able to accept the way things are, then to go a step further and make things the best they can be.  You go a step further every chance you get.

I know God has wired you uniquely.  I pray you will always strive to be true to the way He wired you - especially when your wiring seems different than most.   I appreciate your ability to empathize with others.  When your little brothers are bothered by something, you quickly try and come up with a solution for them - and when there is no solution to be found, you offer your comfort.  It is always a joy to watch this happen, even if maybe you shouldn't be offering comfort to someone in time-out. 

Happy birthday bud, I pray great things for the year ahead.  Even if we end up moving to Africa...God is the one that is preparing the next place for us.  

17 July 2013

a decade of motherhood

This morning I laid awake for a few minutes before mustering the energy to get out of bed. Last night I had fallen asleep quickly, but then I woke up and could. not. get. back. to. sleep.

So the first half of the night was long because I was trying to fall asleep without keeping the man awake.  I do a lot of my best praying during these awake-but-wish-to-be-asleep times.  Eventually, after revisiting my mental prayer list a few times, I did fall asleep.

Then Franklin woke up.  Screaming.  I am not sure how long that went on.  Longer than any of us hoped, that is for sure.  I was awake, but useless because I had just fallen asleep shortly before the screaming began.

This morning when my clock told me it was time to get up, I was slow moving.  I prayed about my mothering, before rolling out of bed.  I know these days that follow nights with little sleep are generally tough ones.

Sometime between rolling out of bed and pouring that first cup of coffee while the house was quiet, I thought back to 10 years ago today.  July 17, 2003, I drank a concoction of raspberry tea and castor oil.  While the initial aftermath was wretched, I am pretty sure I had forgotten about it by the time I went to bed that evening.  When I woke-up with stomach cramps, I thought it was the castor oil, but didn't think it was labor.  First-time pregnancy bliss!

  

(we put on a happy face for the camera)

 I didn't wake Brad because I was pretty sure the castor oil was only going to cause intestinal unpleasantness. {That was the warning in everything I read, but I tried it anyway.}  I quietly went into the nursery (where eventually that sweet baby never ever slept), and began reading some of the children's books we had neatly tucked into a basket. I prayed. I sang hymns. I acknowledged how scary this whole motherhood thing was that loomed before me.  I felt like I needed to get it right and yet knew nothing about how to do that.  I whispered dreams for this baby to the Author of all dreams.

(this photo tells the story a little more accurately)

 
Its funny how many times, ten years later; I still think those thoughts.  And pray those prayers.  And sing those hymns.  And whisper those dreams.  In the middle of the night.  In the quiet mornings.

I'm grateful that God always meets me in those places.  Ever faithful.  Always ready.

15 July 2013

just do the next thing

Sometimes my mind overwhelms me.  I think over things I don't necessarily need to be thinking about... a lot of times, I pre-think.  Please tell me I am not the only one.  You know, you spend time thinking over something that you don't actually have to think about until later on down the road?  Super common, right?  (Right??)

I think some people would classify it as daydreaming.  Others might call it worry.

Here's how it went down recently for me.

Many of you have generously sent donations to fill up the clothing racks and fulfill the need for bags.  Also, during VBS the kids brought in toiletries throughout the week - enough to fill and overflow the shelves.
this is seriously only a portion of the toiletries.  and see all those various size diapers?  so awesome
I started thinking about what might be next.  Should there an off-site location to handle the overflow of donations?  Should we begin thinking about potentially starting something like Taylor's Closet?  or Our Big House?  The what's next pre-thinking thoughts begin to jumble up the what's now thoughts and before too long there's just a mangled mess of  worried-daydreams in my thinking space.  Gross.

This messy-mind is enough to plant my feet firmly in the muck of uncertainty.  When my feet get planted in uncertainty its hard to move.

But God says, "Sister, get over yourself.  Just do the next thing."  {paraphrase of Psalm 143:10}

So the next thing for now, is to share the list of supplies that we still need downtown. 

Remember, this supply closet is a place where caseworker's can grab what they need for kiddos that have come in to care.  In the scheme of things, its just a little something to help the difficult day go a little smoother.  If there are clothes in the appropriate size and toiletries available to help a child get washed up, it frees the caseworkers up to get to the work of finding a home for the child to go to.  

Items needed:

Girls' New Clothing
  • newborn - filled
  • 3-6 months - filled
  • 6-9 months - filled
  • 12 months - need 1 outfit
  • 18 months - filled
  • 24 months - filled
  • 2T - need 3 outfits
  • 3T - need 3 outfits
  • 4T - need 3 outfits
  • XS (4/5)- need 1 outfit
  • S (6/7) - filled
  • M  (8)- need 1 outfit
  • L (10/12)- need 1 outfit
  • XL & Juniors (size 14 and up) need a few outfits*
  • need girls' socks all sizes

a peek at the clothes.  there are 4 more racks like this!


Boys' New Clothing
  • newborn - filled
  • 3-6 months - filled
  • 6-9 months - filled
  • 12 months - filled
  • 18 months - need 1 outfit
  • 24 months - filled
  • 2T - need 1 outfit
  • 3T - need 1 outfit
  • 4T - need 1 outfit
  • XS - filled
  • S - filled
  • M - filled
  • L - need 1 outfit
  • XL & Juniors, need a few outfits*
  • need boys' underwear 2T, 3T, 4T, and XS, S
Another need is blankets.  Often times children spend quite a bit of time at the office while the caseworkers they to find a home for them.  As with most large buildings in the south, the AC is cold.  It would be nice for the kiddos to be comforted with a blanket during their wait.  The blanket would then become theirs to keep.  If you are crafter and want to make some, bring it!

* There are some larger clothing items in the storage closet, but most of it doesn't go together and the sizes are random.  Generally speaking, this size range is not needed as often.  Usually an older child will be able to dress and care for themselves - however, if an older child has come in to care and is in need of a change of clothes, etc, I would surely think they are keenly aware of it... which is why I desperately want to provide a few outfits there as well.  

If you have any questions ask here or on FB.  I'll be in touch!

12 July 2013

five minute friday - present

I am doing the five-minute-friday thing again.I thought I would include the rules if you want to see them... its pretty simple!
 
1. Write for 5 minutes flat – no editing, no over thinking, no backtracking.
2. Link back here and invite others to join in.
3. And then absolutely, no ifs, ands or buts about it, you need to visit the person who linked up before you & encourage them in their comments. Seriously. That is, like, the rule. And the fun. And the heart of this community..


See? Simple!

Five Minute Friday 

Present.  GO:

This morning when I went out for my run, I didn't turn on a playlist.  It was just me, my heavy breathing, that lady from runkeeper periodically telling me how fast to run, and my prayers.

I prayed for a friend that is pregnant, in the at-risk-years; and she's weary.  I prayed for renewed energy and confidence.  I prayed she would sense His presence.

I prayed for a job for Brad.  Not just one that pays the bills, but one that floods his heart and challenges him everyday to seek God's presence more. 

I prayed for a courtdate with a little baby in the middle, and all of the hearts that will be impacted for a lifetime by the decision today.  I only know to believe that God is present there.

I prayed for housing for friends, and upcoming moves, and challenges that might measure small to some but are big when they are right in front of you.

I felt his presence as I ran around my little bitty neighborhood streets.  I know He heard these prayers and that He interceded in ways that I didn't know how.  It is refreshing to run in His presence even in the heat and humidity here.

He is always present.  Sometimes I just ignore Him.  I hate that.  I hope He continues to draw me closer.

{so much that I want to go back and edit here.  But I am following the rules anyway}

11 July 2013

out of the blue





I have just a little special moment to share with you. 

Maybe it struck me as so special because last summer was just so hard.  Lots of little illnesses, combined with a heart-wrenching trial, all while becoming a family of 6 but waiting for the courts to make it official.  Hard summer days.

So this summer has just held a whole lot of joy in the middle of little regular moments, like boys splashing in our tiny pool while I blow bubbles.  Special treasure.

This morning, though, I got a little extra treasure out of the blue.   As Wilson & Walker and I discussed what to pack for "Camp Barbie" we also talked about how many days they would be away. 

I told the them that I wasn't sure if they would be back on Tuesday or Wednesday.  Walker said, "Well, I hope it will be Thursday."  Wilson replied, "Thursday is my birthday."

Then Wilson adds the little extra nugget of treasure.

"And as fun as it would be to celebrate my birthday at Mrs. Barbie's house, I would like to have my little brothers there."

And I almost cried.  It is so fun to glimpse the beauty God creates.

I'm sharing this post today as part of a link up at Chasing Blue Skies.  Its a fun way to reflect on a little special blessing that God brings you right out of the blue!  You can join in here!



09 July 2013

the things we carry


I posted this picture yesterday; with the little story about the elderly man that gave me the crosses.  He quietly approached our family at Subway and gestured to Linc and Frank and asked, "are these your boys?"  After nodding yes, he quickly asked if they were adopted, another nod yes, and with a bit of relief he told us that he was an adoptive father too.  Before leaving, he pulled these little crosses from his pocket for the boys, and told us that the wood was from Isreal (I think, I keep forgetting to fact-check this with Brad).

This will be added to the stories I carry with me.  

It got me thinking of another story that I've been carrying around with me.  I think its time to share it with y'all.  I don't think I ever told you about this unexpectedly difficult event while we were transitioning from a family of four to a family of six.

We were in the middle of the back-and-forth days.  I'd pick Lincoln & Franklin up from the foster parents' house after I dropped the bigs at school.  We'd spend the day at home practicing meals, and naps, and playing in the living room.  After dinner, we'd pack up and drive across town to take the boys back to the foster parents' house.  These were long, hard, exhausting days. 

Caught in the middle, with no clue how long it might last.

On one of these long days, I got a text from the foster momma to call our caseworker.  Great.

Our caseworker was hoping we could "stop by" and be on a panel for one of the foster-parent-training classes.  That night.  Super.

We were less than thrilled that we had been chosen to take this show on the road; we'd been in those classes, and we didn't feel like we were in a position to really offer anything.  We were still in a place where Lincoln and Franklin weren't always thrilled with us being the ones to offer comfort.  The idea of putting the transition on display for a bunch of hopeful future foster/adoptive parents made me a bit of a wreck.  But we were also caught in the middle, and didn't want to be contrary in any way that could possibly make this process take longer.

{Now that I am out of the middle, I don't really think saying "no" would've had an adverse impact on the process, but the thing is, when you are in the middle it feels like it all weighs heavy.}

After dinner, we did our best to make ourselves presentable.  Surely I put my crazy-end-of-the-day hair in a pony tail.  We wiped off four faces and combed hair quickly.  We made sure we had some of those Gerber fruit puffs in the diaper bag and agreed to let Wilson and Walker bring whatever gaming device they wanted.  Although, I do remember suggesting Wilson bring a book to read.  

Because, really, wouldn't that look better while we were on the panel?

On our way there we had to wait on a train crossing the street.  And then reversing back across the street.  And then pulling forward again.  I sent some texts to our caseworker to let her know we were going to be late.  She tried to suggest an alternate route, but we were not familiar with any of the other roads to get to the DFCS office.  I broke into a bit of a sweat.  I did not want to be a sweaty mess when we got there - which I think made me sweat all the more.

We finally made it and  walked in to a full room; 30-40ish people maybe.  Our seats were right up front facing the class.  I suggested Wilson and Walker sit off to the side where some chairs lined the wall - thinking if we could reduce the number in our show, then the presentation might be more polished.  Of course, some "do-gooder" quickly got up and dragged two more chairs right up front next to ours.  Thanks, man.

The caseworker introduced the entire panel.  Our family, an investigator, another caseworker, someone I don't remember, and...

...a boy that wanted a family.  

Oh my heart.

His parents' rights had been terminated, he had no family members to go to. 

Y'all.  I could not look down the line at him.  I think he was 11 or so.

At this moment, I was grateful that I had been so self-absorbed when we walked in that I didn't notice him sitting there. 

I could barely handle it.  

The caseworker graciously started with us so we could leave immediately following the question time.  The thing is, I don't remember the questions we were asked.  

All I can remember is that there was a little boy sitting on a panel in front of a room full of adults because he wanted a family.  I remember that I wondered about who was sitting with him, was someone holding his hand?  I think I tried to inaudibly whisper to Brad that I could not look down there.  

We weren't there long, the babies were fussing, it was late, and it was a school night.  When we got back to the van I was once again absorbed with the daily tasks during this middle place of transitioning.

But I carry this story with me.  It comes to mind more often than I can say.  The memory of the brave boy on the panel.  He is a reminder of so many others just like him that are waiting.  For a family to call their own.

Right now, I don't know what else I can do but share his story.  And pray.

"A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in His holy dwelling.  God sets the lonely in families, he leads out the prisoners with singing; but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land."  Psalm 68:5-6

05 July 2013

five minute friday : beautiful

I am taking a little bit of a departure here, I thought I should tell the four of you that read this thing on a regular basis.  I've decided to participate in a writing-prompt-party on Fridays.  It's only five minutes and anyone can join.  I thought it would be a fun way to get some words out there without thinking too terribly much about it.  I'm writing this introduction after I did my "five minutes" and I gotta admit, I am a bit of a sweaty mess after that timer starts - and maybe a teensy bit more so before linking up.  I think its good to stretch a bit though.  Feel free to check out the party here.



Five Minute Friday

Five Minute Friday

BEAUTIFUL

I used to think the word beautiful applied to things like sunsets, and rainbows, and super models and artwork.  I thought "beauty is in the eye of the beholder" meant that it was something that changed from person to person.  But I don't think that anymore.  I think the beholder can train her eye to see beauty...  and pretty soon there are beautiful things all around.

A toddler hand on a mommy arm.  Boys that scramble to the door when daddy comes home.  Clouds racing across a bright blue sky.  Fresh fruit for picking.  Dream-sharing date nights.  A grandmother that repeats the same answer to grandpa over and over, with the same intonation each time; weary but not giving up.  Sisters laughing.  Brothers throwing crab-apples.   Squirt guns in baby fingers.  Ice cream cones dribbling down fingers, arms, shirts and pants.

STOP!

If you might be interested in joining in on the fun you can click right here to find out all of the details.  This is my second week doing it, and I will admit I am not nearly as sweaty as I was last week. ;)  TMI?


02 July 2013

the slow business of becoming unflappable

Remember that word for the year?  The one that was almost embarrassing to admit.

You might be wondering how the move from flappable to unflappable is coming along.

It is coming along.

When you ask God for a word and a focus.  He gives it.  It might not be the word or focus you would've chosen.  When you ask Him to change you.  He does it.  Not all at once though.  The thing about being a believer in Jesus is that the Holy Spirit dwells in you.

[This might sound weird to those of you that don't know Jesus... and might make you skeptical because wouldn't all of us Christians be better at this Christian-thing if we had a HOLY Spirit living in us?  I get that.  The thing is our human nature still lives there too.  While Jesus gives us victory through the power of the Holy Spirit, we still need to ask for it.  And walk in it.]

So back to the flapping and the Holy Spirit.  Oh my.  The conviction over a shout-burst.  The instant recognition of my flappable ways has been profound.  And frequent.  I still find myself face-on-the-floor often over my mothering failures.  But I find grace too.  Reminders that face-on-the-floor is not a bad place to be.  He finds me right there and gives me courage to get back up and try again.  And again.

He has also reminded me to keep my eyes on my own paper.  You know how when you get pressed with something uncomfortable, its easier to look at others and say, "well, I am doing way better than...."?  You've done this, right?

God gave me a really wonderful visual reminder to look back on throughout this flappable-to-unflappable process.  In January, Wilson was on the honor roll and there was an assembly.  Brad wasn't able to attend so it was just Franklin + Lincoln + me.  I tend to break out in a sweat when going to a school gathering with the two of them.  Toddlers + sitting still for a long time; well, that's just not really a thing.  We got there on time and were able to get seats at the end of the row where the stroller could be parked easily and out of the way.  Victory!

There was another boy a little older than the twins running all over the gym.  He was more or less ignoring his momma.  Not too unusual really.  He turned around and his t-shirt shocked me, it read, "I may be small, but I run this sh*t."  I almost took a stealth photo of it to post on FB.  You know, so everyone could weigh in on how ridiculous this was.  I could see on the looks of other parents' faces that they were not impressed either.  Pretty soon our kids that were able to read were going to walk in and see this shirt.  Classy.  So I sat there in all my judgey-glory, internally condemning this mother and her lack of reason and inability to make appropriate choices.  I imagined what some of your responses would be to the FB photo post of this little dude that was running things.

And just like that.  It hit me in the face.

How many times a day do I make an appalling-parenting-choice?  How many things happen {maybe in the privacy of my own home} that would make a room full of other parents judge my lack of reason and my inability to make appropriate choices?  I think my cheeks flushed as I realized how my flappable-ness would make great FB fodder.  I knew God was telling me to "keep my eyes on my own paper."  Quit looking for others' faults so I could clearly see my own when the Spirit pointed them out.

Instead of posting I picture of that little guy, I posted this one::


But I haven't forgotten what I learned that day.  I think of that little boy's shirt all the time.  Of him running around and the way I judged his momma.  So not my place.  I have work to do in my own home.  Who am I to judge?



P.S. I started this draft awhile back and finally found the courage to finish it off.  God is good and I can see His work in our home, in my mothering.  But, oh, He has so much more work to do here.  Thank you for cheering me on along the way!