Thursday, February 18, 2010
Monday will mark fourteen years ago that we were blessed with a baby boy. We weren't expecting him, at all. He was predicted to be a girl. So much so that there was only one boy outfit period in all that we had. I was so shocked when the doctor announced he was a boy, I knocked the sterile drapes down because I didn't believe him! I wondered what on earth I was going to do with a little boy. I was used to bows and dresses and dolls. Girl stuff was what I had known since Taylor was born. I shouldn't have worried though because I was a tree climbing, frog gigging, lizard hunting, fish catching little tomboy myself. But there we were, and there we held, the little boy who took us by storm in the delivery room that day...he has continued to be a never ending source of entertainment and at times button pushing to the max, adventure. That little boy of mine just happens to be a lot like his mom. Don't let him know I said that though, or the eyerolling and denials will commence on the spot. He definitely has his mom's stubbornness, and his mom's ability to contribute more vocabulary words daily than surrounding ears are equipped to absorb. And yes, like his mom, he seems to always strive to have the last word. It's been an amazing thing to watch him grow from a little blond haired Tonka, Lego, helicopter loving youngster into the teen who loves nothing better than to whip everyone around him in Xbox games. He can spend hours proving his worth against any competitor who dares to enter his domain. Very few walk away in triumph, after an encounter with him. He welds a pretty nasty guitar in Guitar Hero too, although his sister has him on that one! Along with the normal teenage striving for independence, has also arrived the sometimes sullen, grumpy for no reason, I'm mad at the world attitude we all as parents dread. In and out of the normal ups and downs are some tear jerker episodes, and then, there are times that make me say..."Hey! That boy right there? That's my boy!" See, it seems sometimes, God opens the window just a little, and I see the character that is developing inside him. For a time it may be hidden by his longer hair and clothing that we seem to fight and fight over...but it's in there. And it's growing, day by day. One thing I'm finding out, is that this boy, is quickly growing into a young man. And some of the observations that come out of him every now and then astound me.
Most all of us have been affected by the economy, in some way or another. One of the things Keith and I decided was that we needed to become better stewards of the money that comes into the household. This brought on some changes. Some changes were forced by the economy and some we felt would just form better habits for us and for our children. We aren't as quick, to hand out money as we used to be. Now, our kids have to think about the different things coming up and decide which things they are most interested in doing. Sometimes they choose things like youth trips with the church, and sometimes they decide on things that involve other groups of friends. They know, though, that when they have earned the money for something, that's it and they may have to sit some other things out once their money is spent. Sometimes (it's the mom in me) I would like to do more for them. This, brings me to the moment I want to share with you. Cody and I were discussing what he'd like to do for his birthday. He had three things he would really like to do and/or have. I told him I really would like to do every one of those things, but because of different reasons, mainly financial obligations coming up, he would have to choose one idea. His attitude really surprised me. He made his choice and he seems pretty happy with it. Then, my fourteen year old boy looked at me and said "Mom, I'm okay with the ten or twenty you and dad give me every now and then. I think, that if you guys handed me money all the time, I think that I would have a really rotten attitude." I guess that really struck me as awesome coming from him because Keith and I don't hand either one of the kids a ten or a twenty very often. They really have learned ways to stretch their money. It's really more of a priviledge and definitely a treat to even have the chance to earn it. Just to hear that come from Cody, was like a window opened for just a moment, letting me see how this boy really looks at things. Would he love to do everything every friend of his does? Sure he would! And I'm sure sometimes, he is disappointed to sit some things out. But we've started sticking with, when the spending money is gone, it is gone...no if's, and's or but's about it.
Anyway, this is my moment to have more than a little pride in my son, and share a glimpse of the man he is one day going to be...I"m proud of him (most of the time :) longer hair, funny faces, weird sayings, skinny jeans and all....He is my youngest; he is my baby (I hope he doesn't read that or I'm in so much trouble)...Yes,that boy is MINE! I will enjoy this feeling today...for tomorrow I'm sure I will be pulling my hair out!! Lol...
A friend posted this...it fits the mood I've felt about the ups and downs of being a parent...get your kleenex ready...
Saturday, February 13, 2010
Finally, a snowfall special enough to write home about! This deluge of white was enjoyed through the lense of the camera, rolled in, rolled up, thrown around, sculpted into the strangest of forms and last but not least, it was eaten as snowcream. This blanket of white transformed our dreary winter world into a wonderland of white...awe inspiring in beauty that only God could create...and thoroughly enjoyed by adults and kids alike...Relished for a moment, and remembered for a lifetime...
Thursday, February 11, 2010
"Holy, Holy, Holy,
Is the Lord God Almighty.
Who was, and is, and is to come.
With all creation I sing: Praise to the King of Kings!
You are my everything, And I will adore You."
This morning I pulled up "The More I Seek You" and "Revelation Song" and spent some needed time in the presence of the Father. When the words to the section above came across, images began to play in my mind; images of waves building and cresting in height and crashing down in force and splendor; the lightening struck, the thunder shook; and trees, that normally would stand straight and tall bent down, almost touching the ground. It was almost as if the very winds that were blowing them were carrying the name of "Jesus" on every lash. Images of earthquake ridden areas with buildings crumbled, and the sides of mountains lost their height, and leveled, into nothingness. The images were powerful, almost as if the Earth was bowing and crying out the name of the One who spoke her into existence. Picture a flowing music scale with different names for God intertwined throughout the lines,[Jehovah-Sabaoth, El Shaddai, Jehovah-Shalom, El Elyon, Jehovah-Jireh, Jehova-Elohim, Adonai] moving across the earth. It was like all creation was crying out "Holy, Holy, Holy, Is the Lord God Almighty".
Monday, February 8, 2010
As parents, it's our job to raise our kids and teach them the ways of life, the foundations of faith, and so many other things. It seems to me lately, though that I'm learning a lot through listening to my children.
I have one child whose faith is strong, although like anyone else she has her share of struggles, and through her I'm learning that many times I need to close my mouth and listen more (that one's a little difficult for me.) Then,I have one child who, at this point, well I just call him my prodigal...my handsome blue-eyed prodigal. It is through his eyes that I am learning just how so many unbelievers view those of us who profess to be Christians. See, my boy point blank asked me, "Why would I want to be a Christian? I treat people better than most Christians do." And the sad thing is, I had no answer. I simply told him, "Son, I'm proud of you, and I'm proud of the character that you've shown." That was a startling revelation to me as to how he's looking at things and why he's made some of the decisions he's made. See, he didn't arrive to where he is overnight. There was a combination of life circumstances, combined with personal choices that created the disbelief. No amount of scripture quoting and preaching from me or anyone else is going to change it. But seeing Jesus...Seeing his arms really reaching and His heart really loving through His people...That will, yes it will, one day, along with a move of the Holy Spirit; that will captivate his heart. His watchful eye is stopping first, on my doorstep. I am daily having to examine myself, and work on shortcomings that in themselves may be a hindrance to bringing my boy back home. I worry every time I get frustrated and lose my temper, or come across harsher than I mean to that I'm pushing him further and further away...so I pray for patience and I pray for longsuffering and wisdom in punishment and setting limits.
If it weren't for this stage in his life, maybe I never would have been convicted of some of the things I'm feeling such a strong conviction on now. So yes, my prodigal is growing my relationship with my Father and he doesn't even have a clue. You see, it is through him that I'm realizing how short I'm falling. It is through him, that I see how important it is for those of us who call ourselves followers of Jesus...to try to act more like Jesus and have more of a servant's heart, a heart of compassion.
Jesus said to them, "It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners."
Sometimes I believe I get so busy being a "Christian" that maybe I forget I was once a sinner, unforgiven myself.
Friday, February 5, 2010
I discovered last night, that it isn't the wisest of moves to leave two teenagers home alone for hours. You'd think by the time they are seventeen and fourteen that the time has "arrived" that you can fly the coop for a little while and come back to.....TOTAL CHAOS! But, I'm not griping mind you. On the way home I started receiving texts from Taylor..."Can I fry chicken?" "What chicken do I use?" "Do we have cayenne and paprika? I don't know what these things are!" "MOM, how do I do it?" I offered to help, if she would just wait. The reply was "I wanna do it."
You know how there are little warning signs on the roads? Well those texts were warning signs...screaming..."DON"T GO HOME...TURN AROUND NOW!"
Upon walking in the door...I thought my eyes would bug out of my head...the kitchen...MY kitchen, looked like it had regurgitated all over itself. There's no other way to describe it. Two teenagers, had obviously been eating since the moment I left them and had now decided to learn what flour, eggs and spices are all about. Wouldn't you know? Standing in the middle of the mess was the girl...looking like the cat that ate the canary...lol. Honestly, it was a moment I would have frozen in time if it were possible...A scene of flour, everywhere(or maybe it was a blizzard) I don't know, way too much garbage pushed into a walmart bag(split and spilling over like the cup that overfloweth), and Arby's wrappers from one end of the bar to the other. (Thanks Mimi and Papa for seeing they were fed!")...Ahhhhhh...I felt like I became obssesive compulsive with cleaning in a matter of seconds! It was MIND/MESS/OVERLOAD!! This story doesn't make sense, and there really isn't a point to it...period. It's just one of those things, I walked in on, and at any other time I might have blown a gasket. But last night, the whole scene, just kind of hit me between the eyes that this is one of those crazy, rich times that struck me as humorous....My hat's off to my kid who definitely gave frying chicken her best shot. And it was pretty good...although it could have tasted like dirt and I would've told the world it was better than the Colonel's!
And just to give my girl a pat on the back, and redeem her from the disastrous kitchen episode...She did do laundry and clean the entire basement earlier in the day! :) Go Taylor!
On second thought, and this just hit me; I'm just wondering, if the Father ever looks down on us and sees us trying so hard. In the middle of the trying we sometimes make the biggest mess of all time. Does He ever think to Himself, "Now if she had just waited, a little bit longer, and let ME show her the way, there wouldn't be so much clean up to do?" But yet, He is patient and He still loves us and probably even finds humor in some of our shenanigans. I sure hope He does at least, because if He doesn't, I'm for certain I would have driven Him to the point of exhaustion by now.