Friday, November 7, 2014

my reward

Once again, I find myself "adjusting".  We have settled into another school year.  This year, our home is filled with a 7th and several 2nd grade scholars.  I am also subbing again.  The adjusting comes from feeling like I am balancing many spinning plates on poles.  Not too long ago, I told someone that it's a good thing I use plastic plates!!! :) Trying to keep it light and not let the weight and pressure of keeping up with the kids, the house, the job, being a wife, helping at church, and on and on, from squishing me like a bug.  The stress of it all has been tangible.  Forgiveness has been asked for my frustrated reactions and grumpiness.  My children so lovingly and sweetly granted the necessary forgiveness. :) As I try to find the balance and meet all the demands, God is continually there gently reminding me that it is He who is my best help.  As I commit everything to Him, and seek Him, my soul finds peace...I still might feel like I need to ask people if my head is on straight...but my soul is at peace as it rests in Him.  aaaahhhhh...there's the contentment.  I will probably have to remind myself of this 1,649 times today when I am tempted to act as a frenzied crazy woman when socks, homework, backpacks, dishes, and the clutter of life threatens to bury me.  Instead I will choose to turn my head and look at this...
 my sweet girl created this picture on the wall of me and her watching the sunset behind some mountains...do you see our silhouettes??
 or this heart that Caleb made me...I use it as a bookmark in my Bible


 Or any of these creations hanging on the inside of my cupboards to remind me of what is really important.  To remind me of the true reward of my hard work.
The little reminders of why I do what I do are all around me.  I can choose to be grateful for the seven greatest blessings a person could ever have (my husband and children), or be frustrated by all the work that those blessings create.  For me, there really isn't a choice.  I will try and remember my God is my rock, and all that I do is for His glory.  Lord, I am Yours.  May I be used by You to shine Your Love and Grace to those I care for today.
This one is especially helpful when I am really feeling the stress!!!! :)

Monday, October 6, 2014

connectedness...

...is that a word??  If not, it should be.  It's a concept that has continually come to mind lately.  A couple of recent facebook posts by friends and minor events that have happened in my own life have me contemplating.  "connections in life are important"  I read a blogpost the other day written by a mother who's words I have read frequently.  Her daughter is losing her hearing and she asked for people to e mail her if they have experience with cochlear implants.  Immediately, there was a connection between her and I.  (I really am fascinated by the way the internet has provided a medium for such connections)  That night I spent a good chunk of time composing an e mail to her.  Someone facing similar circumstances creates a bond, and to many it brings comfort.  Someone to walk the road with.  The "road" has different names for differrent people, depending on the events fhat created the road in their life.  Some travel the road of depression, or infertility, low income might be your road.  Using the analogy of a traveled road works so well when talking about life, doesn't it??  In my mind, my roads are dotted with red barns, to bring a smile to my face along the way.  On that note, the other day, Ali and I were discussing what we would get each other if we were shopping for a gift.  (traveling in the car gives such nice opportunities for fun discussions with my girl!!)  She said "Mom, if I could, I would get you a red barn".  I was touched so deeply by these words because it speaks of relationship between us.  She knows me and knows what I like.  So special!! ...Now back to roads and being connected.  Sorry for the temporary distraction.  I couldn't resist bringing one of my kids into the discussion. :)  Not too long ago, I was at the cemetary remembering my Renae.  As I turned to walk back to my car, I couldn't help but notice a woman who had a familiar look in her eye.  I recognized it because I, too have that look.  Broken, hurting, yet hopeful over the loss of a child.  I initiated a brief conversation that revealed she, too, had lost a baby girl.  Our parting hug was meaningful to me and later learned how meaningful it was to her too as I read the words of a letter she sent to me.  It was the first time she had been able to go to the cemetary alone and our connection helped her.  I believe God plants people in our lives and along our path to help us by granting wisdom and hope.  Talking to someone who is further on their journey than you are can be so encouraging.  I used to watch the show Jon and Kate plus 8.  Sometimes it gave me good ideas for products that would help with my four young kiddos.  My Mom to the 6th power shirt came as a result of my "Kate Gosselin's Mom shirt" google search. 
 I loved this shirt so much there are now many holes in the seams. I should order a new one!!

She was walking a similar road to me and I enjoyed the connection.  My dear husband, on the other hand, didn't quite understand my interest in another's life.  He wondered why I wanted to watch it when I was actually living it. :)

In this world of personal devices, there is a different sense of connection that arises because of the ability to know what is going on with old friends because of text messaging and facebook.  But at the bus stop, in line at the grocery store, across the aisle in the restraunt there are connections waiting to happen.  An opportunity might arise where you can share what you've learned on your road...and the chance to help one another feels pretty good.  I was recently shopping at Costo with my kids and an older gentleman stopped us when he noticed Caleb's cochlear implant.  The kind man also had one.  We talked only briefly, but I was so blessed by his interest in making a connection with my son.  Life holds many twists and turns.  Along the way, I hope to be able to help others because of what God has graciously helped me experience.  I also hope to humbly and thankfully receive help because I am learning I can't do this thing called life on my own.