Thursday, January 27, 2011

Hard Eucharisteo

 This week has been rough, its been a hard eucharisteo. So many hurting friends, so many prayers for grace, so many exhaustive and  lonely days and so many bad attitudes. But... I've been counting blessings, counting this hard week as a strengthening of spiritual muscles.

697. Little boys in kune skin hats playing with rocks and giggling like best friends.

698. Warm weather - many walks around the block and time for Drew to test out his new wheels!

699. Little girl smiles at 4:00 am as I massage her tummy to get out lots of gas. The joy of being reminded that these sweet night meetings, night time cuddles, sleepy eyed girly needing mommy's tender touch, are not going to linger much longer.

700. Great friend Nicole who makes all my kids Birthday so special with her cake creations! No other friend would spend hours creating a castle cake to appease a blossoming 6 year old.

701. Patience amidst chaos.

702. A calming verse when all seems lost, a little boys quick repentance once he sees mommy reading her Bible. Seriously, I got out my bible and read a few verses, then went to deal with my disobedient child, before I made it to the kitchen, said child  asked, "Mommy did  I make you read your bible? I'm really sorry I didn't obey when you asked me to, I'll not do that again..." Thank you Lord!

703 Little girl playing in dead calla lilly compost - a mother in law who is coming in March to help tame this wild mess of a yard.
704. Giving my sweet husband a well deserved foot massage.
705. Encouraging words from a mentor when I'm down and depressed.

706. Little boys who grab books and bread and sit at the table with racing imaginations.
707. Lego creations, proud child who finished one all by himself!

9708. Delighting as child grasps concept of greater than and less than - I just love watching that "light bulb" come on!
709. Proud 3 year old who wants to do everything just like older brother.
710. Holy Spirit words that come across phone lines to speak life into a friend... or at least life into this Hard Heart.
711. Fasting husband who disciplines his life and asks big questions and seeks big answers from God.
712. The undo button since I just deleted this entire post and then brought it back to life! I think that is a sign I'm tired and need to go to bed!
713. Dirty diapers to clean, piles of laundry to wash and beautiful front loaders that magically make laundry not so much of a chore.
714. Little boys who go to bed without dinner, but are reminded that tomorrow is another day with no mistakes.
715. My boy who still prays for Santa and Rudolph at every meal. Young innocence - I just want to bottle it up and keep them this way forever.

~ Blessings, Melissa ~

Monday, January 24, 2011

Naming Them One By One

"The real problem of life is never a lack of time.
The real problem of life - in my life - is lack of thanksgiving."
One Thousand Gifts
A. Voskamp, Page 72

672. Blessed to  be a recovering Cynic! *Read a praying life by Paul Miller to give counsel from The Word on overcoming this accepted form of sin.

673. A message from God for a friend - a voice of encouragement, an intercessor for prayer, a shoulder to lean on in time of need.

674. A Birthday Bash for our Big 6 year old Drew, so many came to love on him and celebrate his life with us.

675. A mere sparrow singing at my window while I prepared pancakes - the worm in his mouth I'm sure he was thankful for.

676. Reviewing lists of Thanksgivings that encourage and uplift - reminding me of how far I've come and how far I still have to go.

677. My "ferocious thrash with joy" as I battle between emotion and obedience.

678. Blessing a friend, wish I could see the smiles!

679. A cold morning, another fleshly desire overcome, it was quite the battle this morning.

680. Weary mama trying to bless the day of her Birthday boy - man that kid has  a memory, he recited all the Birthday traditions I did for Gabe and  expected them all - even the action figure surprise on his whip cream covered pancakes. I love it that my kids really get into family traditions!

681. Saving faith - Lord you have been refining me through fire, I am blessed to know that my faith is real and not some imitation that never will satisfy. Thank you for satisfying my soul. after so many years of struggling with intimacy I've finally been shown that seeking after You was all I needed to do - that seeking  was spelled "T.I.M.E" - time the the Word, time humbling praying and memorizing You Words. Lord may I never look back and press on to a disciplined and grace -filled life in step with You.

682. Disciplined obedience, the ability to overcome temptations when  walking in your strength. Lord, help me to grasp each moment and walk in the fullness of your saving and redeeming love.

683. Quiet mornings for meditation and prayer before the battlefield of chaos ensues,

684. The poem "The Llama who had no pajama," this poem made the boys just giggle and giggle. I must have read it 3x and its a long poem!

685. Say this quick "Yellow butter, purple jelly, red jam, black bread." The boys and I were in fits and giggles trying to say this poem/tongue twister fast.  I love our new poetry book - Llama Llama who had no pajama, the poems are so fun and its really teaching them the art of interpretation.

686. Night out renewing my mind studying how to read and interpret the Bible accurately. I am really enjoying Greek and Hebrew!

687. Another day with a messy house, been too focused on work and schooling to get housework done.

688. A daddy who surprise his son by coming home early and taking him to Burger King for a birthday dinner.
689. Remembering the evening my son was born and the night we both laid awake just staring into each-others eyes.

690. Sweet red dress, leggings and adorable black/White "hippy hat" made with love from Oregon.

691. Turned on a  movie for the kids and didn't feel guilty!

692. Remembering Drew at 2 - he was so quiet and that smile was just contagious. Now Drew talks a mile and minute and I can't get him to slow down enough to see his smiling face! How life has changed in the last few yearsl

693. Looking tonight at pictures of Drew over the last 6 years, how he has grown and changed. I am a blessed mama to wake up to this big boy each day. He delights me with questions and keeps me focused on those things that truly matter in the Kingdom of God. I pray that when Drew looks back at his childhood, he won't think that  I was an anal and up-tightly perfect mother, but will remember that I was a "sinner saved by grace- filled" mother who tried to model and point him to Christ. May he remember that we had fun and laughed and sat at the feet of Jesus.

694. Office littered with Nerf weapons and How to Train Your Dragon swards - a battle occured just a few hours ago.

695. First introduction to King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table - boys LOVED it. Thank you Great Nana for the thoughtful Birthday gift!

696. Silence --- Sleeping and peace filled children down for the night.

~Blessings, Melissa ~

Inscriptions For Drew

My son, Today you are 6, how can that possible be? I remember the  day I birthed you so  very clearly. You were our first -- the fist to get all the new baby things, the first for me to rock and cuddle, the first to walk and say "Mama". I loved celebrating with you all those "first" milestones.  I was so blessed when you were born, you just filled my days with such joy! Your Daddy worked nights and  was going to school that first year, so it was just the two of us most days. You slept so well - almost 18 hours a  day for the first few months and you just fit into my life so perfectly. You had reflux and puked all over everything we owned.  I looked through some pictures to post and almost all the pictures showed your passy (splash shield as Daddy fondly called it) and a spit up rag.

You so were very eager  to make your appearance, that last 3 months of pregnancy was the hardest period in my entire life, I had no idea how much trouble a little human could cause - but it was worth every moment. I especially remember Daddy  and Titi making Thanksgiving dinner because I was on bed rest. A  few weeks after that I ended up in the hospital already dilated to a 3 at 28 weeks. Then I had a kidney infection and my temperature spiked to 105 degrees. You weren't moving and we were so worried that we were going to loose you. After that we were so sure you would be born premature, yet thanks to the Lord you held off until 35 weeks. I gained so much weight with you! I sat around for 3 months eating, reading, and watching TV. It was all that weight that grew you to 6.6 pounds at birth. You were perfect- I'd never met a more beautifully formed baby. You had a head of hair and a perfectly formed face that in no way looked "preemie-ish"! The labor was almost funny, I went to have you naturally, believing that labor wouldn't be too bad - after all I was already at a 6! You came so quickly that I could feel you flying through the birth  canal pinching all my nerves as you went down. You came out sunny side up which gave me the most intense back labor,  it was so painful, but nice and quick! You came so quick the NICU weren't there right away to check you out. I loved having you on my chest while we waited - there were no signs of breathing trouble -  they declared you perfectly healthy! That night we cuddled all night long, I couldn't sleep and you dozed all night. 

Now you  are 6 - six years and two siblings later you have blossomed into a little boy of such gentleness! You just love to play with your brother and sister, this past year I've noticed that you think a lot more about serving them. You love to tell Gabe stories and imagine great battles. Your favorite movie is How to Train Your Dragon. You love music - you listen to all the words and ask me lots of questions. Today we were eating lunch and you heard Chris Tomlin's CD and  commented, '"Mom, we serve God, where He goes we go and when he leads we follow. I heard that in the song!" I just love your active imagination and funny epiphanies you share with me. Last week you asked where cheese came from and how it was made. You spent hours looking at video's and looking at books about cheese. I bought you A.A Milne's book, Now We Are Six to read this year. You also were excited to begin King Aurthur and the Knights of the Round Table. Your reading has improved  a lot this year, you can read three letter words! I'm so proud of you. It seems you have  your fathers gift for math - all the concepts you've learned this year came so easy, I didn't really even have to teach it, you just figured it all out. We were working on even and odd numbers today and you said, "Look mom, its a pattern - every other number is odd/even!"

Drew, you are growing into a boy with integrity and passion for serving others. I'm so  excited to see the amazing things God does with your life. You love to pray for everyday occurances and have such a thankful heart. I love it that all your prayers begin with Thanksgiving to the Lord. I'm so blessed to call you my son. God will do awesome and mighty things in and through your life. I'm so excited to walk along side this journey with you.

Lord - I pray that you would help Drew to keep the ways of the Lord, May Drew grow to be a man of righteousness and justice. Bless Drew as you blessed Abraham and bestow upon him great and mights responsibilities that will bring  You glory!


"For I have chosen (Drew), 
that he may command his children 
and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord 
by doing righteousness and justice, 
so that the Lord may bring to (Drew) what he has promised him.”
Genesis 18:19

Friday, January 21, 2011

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Counting Them One By One

 To read His message in the moment, I'll need to read His passion on the page, wear the lens of the Word, to read His writings in the world. Only the Word is the answer to rightly reading the world, because The Word has nail scarred hands that cup our face close, wipe away the tears running down, has eyes to look deep into our brimming ache and whisper, "I know. I know." The passion on the page is a Person, and the lens I wear of the Word is not abstract idea but the eyes of the God-Man who came and knows the pain."
One Thousand Gifts Page 87

657. Early to rise as alarm beeps in my ear - thank you Lord for grace to lift my weary body out of bed for one more day.

658. Homemade laundry soap - tried a new recipe just for front loaders that need low suds. Smells delightful & costs relatively nothing!

659. Photographs - have  you ever noticed that a mere moment in your life captured on file reveals more than meets the eye? I can study pictures and see the intricacy, the personality, the hidden things that my bare,  naked, grace-less eyes fail noticing because I'm so consumed by self.

660. Arriving at the gym  early to insure I got a bike - the class filled up just 2 minutes after I arrived. Thankful for a great workout and wonderful gym shoes my sweet husband bought me for Christmas.

661.  Spectacular smiles, greeting me in the morning and a daughter who loves to yell "Ma!, Ma!" from her crib alerting me that she is indeed ready for her morning.

662. Unique and fun way my children explore this beautiful creation - from castles in the living room out of sheets; to weapon created draw bridges - they keep me on my toes and my camera snapping.

663 Brisk morning smell of night's end with a  full, foggy moon glowing in the distance.

664. Procrastination - cleaning my house hasn't been much of a priority this week, but reading and cuddling with the kids has, I'm thankful for God's grace and mercy that changes this meticulously anal woman over 6 years - from obsessive cleaner to ignorer of dirt and dust bunnies.

665. Blindness - my corneas are degenerating, which has gradually removed all clarity from my vision - thus I don't notice dirt, wrinkles, gray hair and frown lines. Now that is a blessing! Scary moments though when I put on my contacts and see the real dirt in this house and the wrinkles - I prefer to live blind. John prefers me blind too!

666. Fun with my Preschooler - Gabe's pirate interpretation after going potty. I love this boy!

667. Angelic little boys who stop for smiles - can't you just see the bus in the background with the navy battleship on top. They have wild imaginations - especially when trying to avoid school work.

668. Quiet moment this morning meditating on 1 Thessalonians and The Word - which happened to be a theme I pulled out of the first three chapters. The sun rise was beautiful and the silence was divine.
669. Home with my kids - a blessing that has changed me from the inside out.My life is certainly full - full of love and laughter and littles.

670. Little girl and castles with Big homemade hat and smile.

671. "A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step." Here, this journal, is my one giant step towards a life of accepting grace and living out ... joy.