Monday, December 8, 2014

Beauty in Chaos

I take pictures. Lots of pictures. But sometimes, I get so focused on what I see behind the camera, that I forget to see what is in front of the camera. I get so focused on making things look pretty in my lens, that I miss the day to day moments. I miss my boy riding his sister’s pink tricycle across the front yard and into the ditch just cause it seems like the thing to do. I miss my girl getting out her plastic rake, and raking the front yard because she thinks it’s fun. I miss my boy dragging his wagon through his sister’s leaf pile, because, well, after all, he is a boy, and antagonizing his sister is part of his daily routine. Sometimes, I get so distracted because of the things that I need to do, that I miss the magic of every day moments.  I miss hearing the giggles of two little boys, who are supposed to be napping, but who’ve figured out a fun game to play instead.
And honestly, there are days that I want to miss it. There are days that I want to be somewhere else. There are days that I just want everything to be in its place, and I want it to stay there. But I know that when things are pretty, there won’t be baby giggles anymore. There won’t be plastic shovels everywhere. Or dolls, or trains, or cars. I won’t find bath toys waiting for me in the shower, because a little boy thought that I needed them.  There will be a time that I’ll have quiet. And uninterrupted moments. But now is not that time. And that’s ok. But for now, I’ll try to enjoy the beautiful chaos God has given. 

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Little Hearts

“I have a bad heart, Mom. And I don’t know how to change it.”

She’s 6. And she’s asking big questions, and trying to understand hard concepts. Concepts that I still don’t know that I fully understand. 

“Why, Mom? Why do I have a bad heart?”

So we talked. We talked about why Jesus died. We talked about why He rose again. We talked about her name, and what it means. We talked about what it means to pray. And how she has to pray on her own, and how I can’t do it for her. 

“Can I go color now, Mom?”

Sometimes I think I am more moved by these conversations than she is. But I also know that I don’t understand what the Lord is doing in that little heart. 

I just pray that He continues to work.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Of Blackberries and Mosquitoes

Blackberries. Big, beautiful blackberries. 

Totally worth every mosquito bite in the fight to harvest them. And totally worth every thorn prick, too. 

It’s funny how sometimes, we don’t really think about mosquitoes and thorns until after we have had our fill. But other times, the mosquitoes chase us away. 

And I wonder ... how often do the “mosquitoes” of this life chase me away from God? How often I let little things cause me to sin, instead of reaching out to Him. And I wonder, is it worth it? Is this life worth it? Is it worth fighting off the little things to reap the benefits of the fruit? It certainly should be, but so often I know I lose focus of the reward and only see the things that get in the way 

... But maybe, just maybe those things don’t really get “in the way”. Maybe, just maybe, those things are used to grow us, to strengthen us and to give us scars. Because don’t those scars remind us of the battle fought? Of the victory obtained? Or maybe the battle fought that was lost? 

And yet, there is someone who bears scars only because of a battle won. The victory over sin. The victory over death. A battle we don’t have to fight, because we would never win. And yet, He saw fit to win it for us and bear the scars that should have been ours. 

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

So Strong

If I’ve heard it once, I’ve heard it a million times. “You are so strong,” people say. “How do you handle being a military wife?” Most times I am just left speechless, because I have never really figured out how to respond. Tonight, my husband and I figured out that he has left every year for the past 4 years, and next year he will probably be leaving again. All because of the military. Not only that, but we’ve also added 3 children to the mix in those 4 years. 3 children, in addition to the 2 we already had. So, that makes 5 children in 5 ½ years, plus my husband has been gone a total of 13 months out of those 4 years. Thankfully though, this last 3 months of training we were able to go with him. But anyways, back to the original statement .. “You must be so strong.” I finally have a response. I’m not strong, but my God is strong.
A long time ago, in very different circumstances, I remember my husband telling me that our God was bigger than the situation we were in. And that statement has followed me ever since ... My God is bigger than (fill in the blank). My God is bigger than any deployment. My God is bigger than mushed blueberries all over the playroom floor (the carpeted playroom floor). My God is bigger than melted marshmallow on my 6 month old (someone was trying to share). My God is bigger than being without my husband for yet another anniversary. My God is bigger than my kids being without their daddy for another 6 months.
So am I strong? Maybe, but I don’t think so. I can’t be strong enough. But my God is. And He isn’t surprised that my husband may be going away again. And even though I struggle (a lot), I am so thankful that I don’t have to do it alone.

Know therefore that the Lord your God is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, to a thousand generations (Deut. 7:9)

Sunday, April 27, 2014


Dear Little One,

You had to say goodbye this week. You had to say goodbye to two people that you love with all your heart. And you didn’t understand why. You didn’t understand why we had to stay here, and they got to go home to “the Glove”. But then, you realized that to say goodbye to “the Glove” means to say goodbye to your family and friends there, and to say goodbye to Texas means to say goodbye to the wonderful people we have met here. And you cried. And I cried too. Sometimes it’s hard having a daddy in the military. 

But more than that, sometimes it’s hard following what the Lord has for you. But you know what I’ve learned here? It’s easy to be comfortable. It’s so easy to be comfortable in the places that we are familiar. And we are comfortable in “the Glove” because it’s all we’ve known. But you know what? We’re not supposed to be comfortable here on this earth. That’s what I’ve learned here. I look at our home in “the Glove” and I love it, because it’s what I know. Then I read my Bible, and God says in it that we shouldn’t look at this world as our home, but it can be hard sometimes not to. It’s hard to look beyond this place to a place that we can only read about. But that is why God calls us to live a life of faith. Faith that looks beyond the here and now, and looks to the place that He has in store for us. Faith that says the things I do today matters for eternity. Faith that says He brought us here for a purpose, even though I don’t know necessarily what that purpose is. Faith that says He is going to take us away from this place, where we have met people we now love. Faith that says we have an eternity with Him, if we believe in Him as our Savior. And do you know what, little one? That place is the best place to be. And do you know why? Because He is there. 


"... These all died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. For people who speak thus make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. If they had been thinking of that land from which they had gone out, they would have had opportunity to return. But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one ..." Hebrews 11:13-16a