Thursday, June 28, 2007

She Went All Out! (Or: I wish I could be that brave)

So I'm sure that all my adoring readers will recall my last post on wanting to be the kind of girl who gives 110% regardless of how 'foolish' I think I'll look. Now I have an example to point to as an object lesson. (however, in revealing this example I'm going to also reveal that I am entirely shallow and wasted an hour of my time last night)

Who will admit that they watched "So You Think You Can Dance?" last night...... show of hands? ..... anyone?.....

Okay, so maybe I'm alone in this. We do not have cable but our antenna picks up enough US stations that I caught this talent competition last night. It was the last couple of the evening that showed me exactly the kind of moxy I want to display in my areas of skill.

As it goes, the last couple to dance went to rehearsal yesterday morning and the girl partner passed out or something and the doctors wouldn't let her dance last night. However, the male partner had clearly practiced all week too and deserved the opportunity to dance for his votes to stay in the competition. The producers of the show said that he could perform with the choreographers assistant who had helped coach these two contestants all week.

Oh sure, I thought. He gets the thrill of dancing with a professional, fabulous, dancer. I'm imagining a long legged, drop dead gorgeous, pro to come out and make him look good no matter how practiced he was or wasn't...... I couldn't have been more wrong.

I wish I had have paid closer attention to what her name was because I would love to give her credit here for being my new short term role model. This choreographers assistant was shortish, pudgy-ish, and just kind of plain. Instead of wearing some brilliant, revealing costume, she wore a simple swingy skirt with what looked like a nice t-shirt kind of thing....and of course a great pair of heels.

I catch my breath and think, "oh you poor thing. You are going to look ridiculous. No one will take you seriously....I hope you don't make a fool of yourself". But then the music started! And she DANCED!!!

Now, she is clearly not going to win the next international ball room dance competition. She definitely falls more in to the "those who can't, teach" realm of excellence. But did she ever kick some serious butt! She had all the steps, she had all attitude, she had all the moxy, all the sex appeal, all the everything she needed to really go for it. She even let the guy pick her up and flip her over his back somehow.

I had judged her in the way I judge myself and expect others to judge me, and boy was I wrong. I very much underestimated her skill and her committment to the task. I was humbled and encouraged, and challenged. With only a few hours of notice she came out and gave it her all, and no one looked at her like she was a fool, and if they did, shame on them because she was amazing.

So here I am still wanting that kind of drive to really really do the things I know I can do. And wanting my kids to get there too. Years ago my husband and I were taking some of our youth group out to play pool for a couple of hours and before we picked up one girl her father, our pastor, said to her "Remember, boys don't like girls who don't try." She was convinced that she wasn't athletic and that she was going to stink at pool. Her dad wisely reminded her it was better to try and goof up slightly than to stand in the corner saying "I don't know how."

Any day now, I expect that will sink in to my brain. I've only being mulling it over for 9 years now....

Tuesday, June 26, 2007


If I could supernaturally impart some character trait on my children RIGHT NOW it would be to always give their 110% without worrying about looking like a turd so that they can look back without regretting doing a half-hearted job.

Now I'm not saying I want them to go out and make fools of themselves attempting things that God has not gifted them for, but in areas where they are seeing some fruit or have been confirmed in their talents, I want them to go all out and give it all with out shame.

This little rant is coming after my just having watched the highschool musical version of Narnia that I was in 15 years ago. I was Mr. Tumnus and I did a fine job. I could have done a really really good job. And at the time I knew it. I was holding back out of fear of 'trying to hard' and looking like a fool.

Fast forward 2 years. I'm in second year university and my brilliant pastor has written a brilliant musical for the church family. I was in the chorus, and an understudy for a lead role, and I gave about 75% because I was new to the church and I was afraid that someone would look at this young 18 year old and say "who does she think she is coming in all diva like that?"

You can repeat this scenario two more times because said brilliant pastor wrote two more brilliant plays that I was in, and each time I watch them I can see and hear myself holding back. Intentionally. This wasn't fear of screwing up. This was fear of going all out and being mocked for that.

It's like the time our cell group was playing soccer baseball (where the pitcher rolls a big ball to the batter who kicks it and then runs the bases) and I was tired of always being the unathletic girl. So I decided that I was going to bunt the ball and then run like the dickens to get to first base. You know really give 100% and who cares if I'm out of breath when I get there JUST GET THERE and then you can recover because at least you won't get embarrased by being out JUST RUN and block everything out.....

And I did get to first base with out being tagged. Except the whole time I was pep talking myself while I was running, the rest of the cell group was trying to get my attention to say it was a foul ball and I was running (retardedly hard) for no good reason, only to have to go up to the stupid batter's box and do it again without looking like a turd. You know, doing the "oh yeah. I knew it was foul, I meant to do that stupid run like the wind routine. I was just warming up."


So, I've decided this:

Wheras I am skilled and gifted by God in certain areas; and wheras God is most glorified when I serve Him fully; therefore: be it resolved an enacted that I shall give my all each time I am asked to do somethng and I will care only what the Lord says.

Also: whereas I have not been skilled or gifted by God in certain areas; and wheras other really have been; therefore: be it resolved and enacted that I shall humbly and gladly step aside to let others perform to the glory of God where I am woefully unable.

Sounds like a plan.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

It's All About me

Oh I know, you are reading the title of this post and thinking "how self-centered", but you wait and see. I'm right about this one (kind of).

How many times have you heard someone say (or maybe said yourself) "the corporate worship in such-and-such church is so unfilling / dead / unheartfelt / dry."?...and because of that 'corporate experience' your personal experience suffers. Or, to the opposite, have you ever felt the joy and sincerity in a body of believers and had your personal experience improve because of it?

Well, it isn't about the building, the number of people in the building, the kind of songs they did, the amount of sunshine on that given Sunday, or any number of other variables like that. It is all about me (and you and the guy beside you and the other how many individuals in the room).

We all need to understand that the 'quality' of corporate worship (I use that word 'quality with much reservation, because it sounds more shallow than I intend it) depends on the genuineness and sincerity of the individuals. The corporate experience is the sum of the personal worship experiences (now that is some pretty basic math right?)

So if worship really is about a heart connection between me and the Lord that can happen any where, any time, then the Sunday morning Corporate experience for me should just be an extension of what I've been doing all week. If it is 'good' or 'fulfilling' than I would expect it is because my heart is connected to the Lord regardless of what is going on around me. If it is 'bad' or 'disappointing' then chances are I've been far from the Lord all week and am now too easily distracted by what is going on around me.

Can the corporate influence or enhance the personal? Certainly. The body is there for the edification of all its parts. However, my walk with the Lord starts with just Him and me. My walk will end someday with just Him and me. I would expect that on Sunday mornings my worship needs to be primarily about Him and me (with all those around me doing the same which adds up to a REAALY Great thing.)

If you want to talk more about worship visit to follow the conversation they are sponsoring about worship. (their posts may make a bit more sense!)

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

My Breath Prayer

I read a brilliant book called Prayer: Finding the Heart's True Home by Richard Foster. Actually I've read it several times now and each time I am drawn by his conversation on the simple complexity of prayer.

One of my favourite suggestions he makes is to select a breath prayer for yourself that you offer up many times a day. Something that is on your heart that can be said in one breath, so to speak. How often do I intend to pray "if only I had more time". This gives me the ability to pray without ceasing on one matter that will greatly impact my day, and my heart (oh, I wish you would go and read the book. I'm making this sound an awful lot like a chore...he is much more inviting about this...)

So here is my breath prayer (it is actually more like two breaths worth, but close enough). It is Psalm 19:14.

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Thy sight, O Lord, my rock and my Redeemer.

There is never a time when I don't need to keep that prayer on my lips. There is never a time when my speech is so pure and pleasing that I can stop worrying about being acceptable. I will be saying this silently, under my breath, out loud with a cry, and hopefully with my children on many occassions today.

"Commenting on breath prayers, Theophane the Recluse notes, 'Thoughts continue to jostle in your head like mosquitoes. To stop this jostling you must bind the mind with one thought, or the thought of One only. An aid to this is a short prayer, which helps the mind to become simple and unified." (pg. 130 Prayer: Finding the Heart's True Home)

In the meantime, you really should find this book. It is such an "open window after a fresh rain" kind of feeling.

Thursday, June 14, 2007


This won't likely be the most pretty post in the Carnival of Beauty this week, but it will be about Truth as it is supposed to be. (please do follow that link and read the other participants of this weeks carnival.) Sometimes the truth of a situation is not pretty, but the Lord's truth comes shining through in His beauty at the right time. That is what this post will look like. Ready?

After baby #3 and baby #4, I struggled with what I'm guessing is Post-Partum depression. I say I'm guessing because I didn't actually go to the doctor to find out if that's what it was or not. Truthfully, I had previously thought it was a joke, the whole PPD thing. Seriously, maybe you are tired, maybe you are grumpy, maybe you just want some attention, but honestly? SNAP OUT OF IT!

Except then I felt that way too. And I realized my arrogance and rudeness and judgemental attitude that I'd held for all those years. So now, as I was feeling like a loser for having been so wrong in the past, now I also felt like jumping off my roof onto a concrete pad, hoping that it would be a far enough jump that I could just wake up in Heaven.

I remember calling my friend and after hearing her "hello" I said "Remind me again why I should want to still be alive?"

I never had one dangerous thought towards my children, for which I praise the Lord. Quite the opposite. I figured if they were done with me they, and my husband, could move on to a better mom, better wife, better life. (see I told you this might get ugly).

And still, as I laid in bed every morning, so dismayed that I had actually woken up again, I knew I couldn't just stay there even though my limbs were like cement. There were 4 children who needed me. If I didn't get up they would not eat. They would sit in their soiled diapers in their cribs all day crying out for a mother who was failing them. I could not let that happen. I had a choice to make. Dragging my self through the day with tears and prayers, I did what I could to do the bare minimums. There was no joy in my soul. I loved my children, I loved my husband, I loved worshipping my Lord, and yet it was all hollow. There was no 'getting myself out' of the pit. I needed Someone's help.

For me the help came in the form of the Word of the Lord. I was believing lies: I was a failure. I couldn't do it all. No one understood. My guilt was too great. My life was too hard. I would never feel joy again.

Turning to the Word for TRUTH, beautiful life giving truth, I found words of encouragement and promise that I wrote out in my Bible to read and re-read every day. Without these I would sink. With them, by the Lord's strength I could slowly stand.

It took time, it took a deliberate choice on my part, and it took the Beauty of the Truth of the Word to pull me out. God is good. I have not found myself there again, by His mercy. And I still stand on these words of promise (this is a long list so get ready!)

(Mat 5:4)

"Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.

(Mat 11:28)

"Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.

Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS.

"For My yoke is easy and My burden is light."

Psa 73:26 My flesh and my heart may fail, But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

2Co 4:8 we are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing;

persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed;

Psa 28:7 The LORD is my strength and my shield; My heart trusts in Him, and I am helped; Therefore my heart exults, And with my song I shall thank Him.

Psa 43:5 Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why are you disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him, The help of my countenance and my God.

Psa 16:10 For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; Nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay.

You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.

Rom 11:1 I say then, God has not rejected His people, has He? May it never be! For I too am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin.

God has not rejected His people whom He foreknew. Or do you not know what the Scripture says in the passage about Elijah, how he pleads with God against Israel?

Jer 31:13 "Then the virgin will rejoice in the dance, And the young men and the old, together, For I will turn their mourning into joy And will comfort them and give them joy for their sorrow.

Psa 139:11 If I say, "Surely the darkness will overwhelm me, And the light around me will be night,"

Even the darkness is not dark to You, And the night is as bright as the day. Darkness and light are alike to You.

Joh 14:1 "Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me.

Job 17:7 "My eye has also grown dim because of grief, And all my members are as a shadow.

Job 17:9 "Nevertheless the righteous will hold to his way, And he who has clean hands will grow stronger and stronger.

Psa 30:2 O LORD my God, I cried to You for help, and You healed me.

O LORD, You have brought up my soul from Sheol; You have kept me alive, that I would not go down to the pit.

Sing praise to the LORD, you His godly ones, And give thanks to His holy name.

There were other verses that He used to speak the truth of His love for me, but space would dictate that I don't include them all. The Beauty of Truth is that EVERY TIME it combats the lies that live in our minds. Thank You Lord for that.

I'm Gonna sing this like I mean it (and then hopefully I really will)

It has kind of been "one of those weeks" in the "how are you doing?" department. I refuse to cave in (permanently) to that yucko blah feeling. So here goes my attempt to change my path: (sing along if you know the tune).

I can see clearly now the rain is gone.

I can see all obstacles in my way.

Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind

It's gonna be a bright, bright, sun-shiny day.

I think I can make it now the pain is gone.

All of my bad feelings have disappeared.

Here is that rainbow I've been praying for.

It's gonna be a bright, bright, sun-shiny day.

Look all around there's nothin' but blue skies

Look straight ahead, nothin' but blue skies.

I can see clearly now the rain has gone.

I can see all obstacles in my way.

Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind

It's gonna be a bright, bright sun-shiny day.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Heard at My House (or: Spelling the Homeschooling Way)

Daughter #3 (age 1 week less than 6): Hey mom, I know how to spell "hello".

Mommy (rather surprised): You do?

Daughter #3 : yup! dot-seven-seven-three-four

Mommy: Close enough for now.

(did I mention she was holding a calculator upside down when she said this?)

Monday, June 11, 2007

A Sunday Surprise (or how the smallest thing made the biggest difference)

Several of you reading this wee blog are aware of my baby dilemma (to conceive or not to conceive, that is the question? Whether tis nobler to have a 7th baby....okay I'll stop).

So yesterday I go to church. Very good. I'm doing okay. Haven't bawled like a toddler with his finger pinched in the door way for several weeks now. I walk in to the sanctuary and there is the young married couple that used to be kids in my husband and my Youth group when we led it a million years ago, and lo and behold, there is their week old baby girl in the carseat in front of them.

And here comes the lump in the throat.

You need to know that I just had been at a baby shower maybe 14 hours earlier with little impact on my emotions. But now this wee baby girl and her lovely young parents. I squated down beside her (which was a feat in itself) and placed my hand on her belly. Her entire torso disappeared in my grasp. She apparently is under 6 pounds right now. Just the size my 2nd was at birth...

I looked up at her parents and said, "Oh my word. I'm going to cry." At which point the father puts his arm around my shoulders and gives me a little squeeze and a little rub (for goodness sake's will someone tell the world that touching a woman who is about to cry only makes the tears come faster?) The thought of these two young people who I watched grow up, now married, now with a baby, really trying to follow hard after the was all too much.

And so I felt my heart well up with blessings for this baby and for this new momma and papa. What a wonderful path they are beginning down! Do they know what they are in for? How far are they willing to go down the path of self-sacrifice? Are they prepared for the joy and pain being parents is going to bring them?

And then I couldn't stop crying. The whole service was a battle to regain my composure. In my head my life long battle raised up again: Do I want another baby? What if I can't conceive again because of the complications after baby 6? Will I be devastated? Will I be relieved? If I have one more, does that mean I'll end up with 12? Am I willing to go through this again? Am I willing not to? How much does God require? What does "be fruitful and multiply" really mean? How far does a girl have to go?......

And on, and on and on andonandonandon.......

Congratulations Kate and Chris. She is beautiful. I just never expected such wee girl to have such an impact for the Kingdom already.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Worship, Plain and Simple

One of the areas of life to which I most heartily devote myself, (both doing and figuring it out...clearly haven't mastered it yet) and the state in which I am always trying to rest (but just knowing what to do doesn't always make it easy), is that of worship. This is not a Sunday morning thing, but rather a lifetime of enjoying the presence of God. Romans 12:1 reminds us to "present [our] bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is [our] spiritual service of worship". This is clearly in some respects a very daunting task, although it is equally freeing as we realize that we are not bound to find the 'perfect' style or the 'right' place to 'do worship'. What worship seems to be about is my heart connecting with my Father's. My relationship with Him deepening, and my experience of Him being more tangible. If I believe that there is no one right way/style/place to worship, and if I see worship as serving my Lord with my whole life and watching Him at work around me, then worship can be as divine as hearing the Hallelujah Chorus or as mundane as changing my baby's diaper. It is about my heart. Am I able to soften my heart to feel His love and give praise back to my Father when I find myself scrubbing toilets?

For me worship needs to involve both knowing who God is, and then feeling His love for me and mine for Him. There is both the head and the heart that need to be engaged. John Piper is helpful when he writes "True worship comes from people who are deeply emotional and who love deep, sound doctrine" (pg. 76 Desiring God) For me to serve a God that I really haven't met through the Word is not true least not worship of the Lord as He says He is. And for me to delve into the depths of theology but not feel a stirring of my heart and emotions, delighting in my knowledge and experience of Him is not true worship...perhaps it is merely a good academic exercise. If I can go through my day filling my God-given role in a way that glorifies Him and satisfies me in Him, then that is worship, Sunday morning music or not.

And speaking of Sunday morning music, I have been witness to so many extremes of congregational singing from acapella psalmody to men's choirs, from full band teams to classical soloists, from the extremely talented and trained to the family dinner table. Each of these have on occassion been entirely 'worshipful' and entirely trite and 'entertaining'. The difference is when I see the heart of the worhsip leader and when my own heart is engaged. "Where feelings for God are dead, worship is dead. " (pg.79 Desiring God).

Perhaps when you strip away all that is cluttering our concept of worship, what is left is relationship. And the best way to grow and develop any relationship is to get to know that person really well and to soften your heart to show love to them, being equally vulnerable to receive love from them.

For more on Worship visit Wonderful Pages.

This Was a Great Read

I know many of you HSB people get the Homeschool Minute in your inbox already, so maybe you've read this. However, I felt Todd Wilson's bit today was particularly stellar. The topic for the day was "Friends" and I loved his perspective. Here are his words:

Hey Mom,

This is going to be a short one. I'm parked in a McDonald's parking lot at about a 30-degree angle and my laptop is about to slide off the table. I know the "girls" will have gobs of advice for growing and nurturing friendships: it will probably have a lot to do with tea parties, scrapbooking, and "feelings."

My only thought about friends is - make your husband your best friend. Don't let any other girl friendship displace your man from being number one. It's easy to let happen, because "he" doesn't think, feel, or understand like a woman.

I know my wife will sometimes say, "I'll call my sister, she'll understand."

When she does, I can't help feeling a little like second-rate goods. I know other husbands feel that way too. A friend of my wife's announced her pregnancy to my wife before she told her own husband. I know he wouldn't have screamed and sounded as excited as my wife did; but that's beside the point.

So, Mom, don't let another friendship overshadow your friendship with your husband. Here's a little way to tell if one already has: ask your husband who he thinks you'd rather talk to and be with --- him or "her."

If he says "her," do whatever it takes to show him he's number one on your friendship list.

The Lord made man and woman different, but both in His image. As much as a girlfriend is a wonderful blessing from the Lord, He intended for us to be completed and fulfilled by our spousal relationship first. Perhaps 'needing to share with a girlfriend' is just one more tool in the arsenal of our enemy to destroy marriage.

Lord help me to use my friendships wisely and to not let anyone come between me and my husband.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Heard At My House

(Mommy and 3 year old son snuggled up in bed pretending to be baby birds in a nest...)

Mommy: kisses son

Son: "Mommy, we can't kiss. Birdies don't kiss"

Mommy: "Why not?"

Son: "Because birdies have beaks."

Mommy: "Instead of...?"

Son: "Birdies can't kiss because they have beaks and not tongues."

(Mommy: mental note...find out who has been teaching my son to kiss!)

Friday, June 1, 2007

Thought-Provoking Question

Alright, all you blog readers, deep thinkers, and occassional is your assignment. I'm going to ask a thought-provoking question and you can give me your best answer either as a comment here or as a link to your blog where you have shared your vast wisdom. Ready? My husband and I have discussed this and I would like to hear your thoughts too.

The book The Five Love Languages explains that one way people express and receive love is through encouraging words (I would be one of them). Assuming that God created this in a person (which I believe He did) how does one reconcile the desire and appreciation of encouraging words without being someone who is driven by seeking the praise of man (Matt.6:1-5 speaks of doing righteous deeds and praying in a certain manner, in front of man, to be noticed by them, honoured by them etc. Jesus says in doing that those people have already received, through the praise of man, their reward in full.)

Have at it. Discuss with your spouse, read the Word, and let me know what you think. Some of you lurkers may even feel like commenting and sharing your wisdom.

Looking forward to reading your input!

Saturday, June 2, 2007 - Great question…
Posted by Jeremy
Here’s my go at it… If someone has done something well and we fail to praise him or her for it, then I think we have not fulfilled our responsibility as a friend, a spouse, a church, a co-worker, etc. Too often there isn’t enough praise given because we fear stoking the flames of vanity. But giving or receiving praise for accomplishment isn’t vanity. Let’s take singing, for sake of argument. If you sang a solo for the glory of God yet no one complimented you, you might be discouraged and think you have not accomplished what you wanted to do. It is for God and you want the solo to be excellent. Praise from your listeners confirms your job was done well. Also, singing a solo in front of a congregation is supposed to impact the audience. If it was just for God alone, then you would only sing in the shower. Praise confirms that people were effected. C.S. Lewis talked about this in Mere Christianity and John Piper picks up on it. When we read a great book, listen to a great song or watch a great film, we tell our friends about it; we “praise” it. When someone accomplishes something, and someone praises him or her, it is a confirmation that the accomplishment was enjoyable and that it affected you. To praise something is also enjoyable… I mean, why do I go on and on about Homer on my blog? By praising it, I am enjoying it anew. (So, to not accept praise for a solo would hinder someone’s fulfilled enjoyment)

As a church we are called to build each other up, to recognize, acknowledge and hone the gifts of the saints. This is done it part through praise. God created humans with unique gifts to be used well. By praising His creation and what His created beings have done, we are ultimately praising Him. Stradivarius violins are the best violins in the world. When the violin is played well, we marvel at the instrument but ultimately we praise Stradivarius himself, the creator. Vanity is when we do something for praise in order to elevate ourselves over God and over others. To seek praise for encouragement and confirmation is actually an outgrowth of a humble heart. Instead of having high esteem for your talents, you have high esteem for those you are seeking to serve by seeking praise from their lips, not your own.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007 - What we give, not what we get...
Posted by MrsPages at
I've been thinking on this all weekend.

First off, I think the Love Languages book is excellent and has helped MrPages and I in many ways.

But I can't help thinking that the Love Languages are supposed to be about what we give, not about what we get.

It's sort of like Paul's instruction to husbands and wives. It's not our responsibility to get our husbands to love us; it is our responsibility to respect them.

It is not our responsibility to get others to love us in a manner that we desire. It is our responsibility to love others in a manner that speaks to their hearts.

And I guess the down side of this, is that we may not get the love we desire from the person we most love. And that is probably the part of my Christian walk that I most detest, and I most fail at.

I have tons more that I could add, about communication, and conflict resolution, and stuff...but another day.

• Tuesday, June 5, 2007 - This is good!
Posted by bestsister
I think MrsPages has touched on what my problem with this question has been all along. And I think Jeremy gives me a bit of clarity in dividing my one question in to two parts.

I completely agree with MrsPages that in my home, in loving my spouse, in serving my children, it is about what I give, not what I get (as grating as that can be to sit under sometimes). Here, in the domestic arena, I know what is required of me regardless of feedback: For example, I am expected to feed my children a healthy meal. Whether or not they praise me and give me encouraging words for my veggie and tofu stir fry is not the point.

However, in serving at Church and using the gifts the Lord has given me, the feed back that Jeremy is talking about is crucial, most times, to see that the work He has called me to is indeed glorifying Him and meeting the needs of others. Now having said that, I know there have been and will continue to be many times that we serve in the church (background or foreground) and never get 'noticed'. I know there will be times where serving the Lord will result in persecution, not praise. But I do think that part of my joy in serving the Lord is see His people respond to Him the way He intends.

However in both the domestic and the corporate, if I am serving IN ORDER TO RECEIVE the comments and praise, instead of being motivated by LOVE than I have missed the point, and have received my reward in full.

Does that make sense?
Thanks for your input. I hope more still come.

• Wednesday, June 6, 2007 - heavenly hash and heavenly beings....
Posted by halfpint
I was ruminating over this with a bowl of heavenly hash.... Your blog made me think of angels. We see them all throughout the bible going place to place to fulfill God's calling for them. They are so beautiful that people are tempted to bow down and worship them. What is their response? Basically it's ' get up! don't worship me! I'm only the messenger here to do my master's bidding! Worship Him! He is the worthy one!" They are seen fighting in His army and proclaiming his glory from the heavens both when He was born in Bethlehem and now in heaven around His throne......"Holy, Holy, Holy!" What struck me about them is how unassuming they are. You don't hear them say "yes I'm fabulous, go ahead and admire me." They know what they were created for and they DO it. Do we know what we were created for? Why did God make all things? 'For His Glory' as the catechism says. John Piper says our chief end is to 'glorify God and enjoy him forever.' I am reminded of a human example in all of this. There is a man in my extended family...... he has been a faithful husband, father and servant in his church. He is not dynamic or a great speaker or singer but he serves with all he is again and again and again. I would be surprised if he gets thanks very often or any form of praise. He serves his sick spouse and has for many years and continues to help out his children when they are in need though they are fully grown. I see Christ in him and I see a reflection of the angels in his unassuming manner.
It is wonderful to give encouragement, I'm all for it. Instead of saying "you have a fabulous voice" or "you are such a talented speaker" perhaps people should be saying.... "Thank-you for your ministry to God, it has blessed me" or " God spoke to me through you." I think our lack of confidence in ministry and life in general might be a reflection of us not knowing God deeply enough, how He see us and how we see Him. It might also be a lack of understanding of what the word service means which Barb and her friend have mentioned. My prayer for my life is that I can see past myself to get to the reality of seeing HIM. amen.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

I Love My High beams

You may remember my harrowing late night drive home I blogged about before. Well, that same route, in very different weather, shed some new light, pun intended, on my spiritual health (or maybe lack thereof).

This time the drive home was equally late, equally dark, and yet dry and clear (praise the Lord). I knew the hour drive ahead of me promised to be relaxing, peaceful, and uneventful. And so it was (praise the Lord again: I do still have 6 wee ones and a husband who need me...for something or other).

However, here is what I learned: even in excellent visibility I like my high beams. I like to see not only what is at the end of my hood, but also several car lengths ahead, not to mention wanting my periphery 'enlightened' as well. I'm not just meaning the lane to my left and the ditch to my right. I mean I want to see Bessie in the field having a late night grass snack. I want to see what man and his sons names are on the barn I'm passing. I want to see if that old farm house has a wreath on their front door (and if so what colour). I want to see lights on in living rooms and over kitchen sinks glowing to my left and right. I don't want to miss a thing. It helps me to feel "connected", or rooted. To see how my car in this exact square of real estate relates to all those other squares really helps me feel safe and in control (didn't I mention I have a problem with this in another post?).

Yes, I like the big picture. I suppose that is the problem with those snowy rides home when the flakes come down thick and heavy in that hypnotising, dizzying way. All you can see is from the windshield to that first flake...not far enough.

And then the Word comes to me. Sing along with me, if you know the tune: "Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path." This does not conjure up flood lights and high beams. This is not even one of those cool million candle strength flashlights Canadian Tire sells. This is a lantern, a beam, that highlights one step, then the next, then the next.

This is what the Lord calls us to, and this is what I kick against. Walking one step by faith, and then the next, not always knowing what is happening to the left and right of me. Not always seeing how what is happening to you affects me and vice versa. How does my kingdom purpose fit into the puzzle with yours? Don't I want to be all-knowing sometimes? Don't I want high beams from the Lord to show me the entire landscape of my walk with Him at once?

Oh Lord, give me the faith to walk one step at a time. To trust you to hold me safe even when I don't see how I'm connected to You and Your Body. To believe that exactly where I am right now is in Your will and that the next step You lead me to will be clear enough when I get there.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Heard at my house

Mommy: (cracking eggs into the muffin batter)

Daughter #4: We only eat those kinds of eggs.

Mommy: What kind of eggs are those?

Daughter #4: The kind with no baby chicks in them. (deep intellectual pause)

Because the other kind would be wrong.

(could this be why daughter #1 is a self-proclaimed vegetarian?)

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Why do I read things?

Sometimes I like to think that I can figure out the right thing to do with just my own 'smarts'. More often then not I'm wrong, so I ask my husband, because his smarts are based on the Bible, where mine are based on self-preservation and the desire to avoid conflict. So why today did I decide to read chapter 7 in a book I love called "Everybody's Normal Till You Get To Know Them" by John Ortberg. Sorry, onfire we might have to talk about this over tea before Friday...maybe you can help straighten me out. Do you have our brain this week?

Anyhow, here is a quote:

But Jesus is [scandalized by lack of love]. Love was His supreme value. His summation of the total teaching of divine revelation is captured in that single word: Love for God, and love for people. Therefore the greatest crimes against the Kingdom of God are crimes against love. To slander another human being, to carry a grudge against someone who I think has hurt me, to gossip about someone I have not even confronted-- these are direct violations of Jesus' fundamental command. Yet these behaviours go on all the time--even in churches. We are not shocked by them. We would be shocked if they suddenly ceased.

I am thinking about my homeschool group and my dissatisfaction with it. And my desire to run away and hide so I can just stay hunkered down with my little family. I am thinking about my issues with the group and the 'reasons and rationales' I have for wanting to quit, except I see now instead a whole lot of my bad attitude where I used to see justification for quitting. You see, any other day I would have read that aforementioned quote and said "yup. They are all like that. I'm outta there." But today I see myself in those lines too. Am I part of the problem? Of course I am. Am I obligated to stay and fix it or should I leave and be one less problem? I have no idea.

What I do have an idea about is my lack of love, and my need to reverse that. Lord, I do not have it in me, as is obvious by what overflows from my heart and out of my nasty mouth. So please come by Your Holy Spirit and make me a loving person. I want to see others the way You do, so I can love like You do. Somehow You love me, let me have that same grace for others, because right now, I clearly don't have much to pass around.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Heard at My House

Today, I've been inspired by others who have done this (see this dad and these two moms) so here is what I heard at my house today.

10 month old Baby Girl, after nursing, with a smile on her face: "Yum"

My oldest daughter was here to witness it. She is so smart speaking so young...she is homeschooled you know!

Now scroll down and read my other post for today. It was really good too!

Want to know a Secret?

Be prepared to amaze your friends and shame your enemies. Be prepared to thrill your taste buds and satisfy your dietician. Be prepared to silence your sweet tooth and still maintain your New Year's Resolution to cut out the junk. Here is my (soon to be) world famous recipe for:

Shockingly Yummy, Yet Brilliantly Healthy

Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins!

(really wish I knew how to add a sound clip of wild applause here)

3 cups whole wheat flour

2 cups chocolate chips (okay so that isn't healthy, but everything else will justify it)

6 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt (or less)

2 cups unsweetened apple juice

2 eggs (okay, so slightly un healthy)

3 large bananas, mushed (I like to leave mine a little chunky)

(notice there is no added sugar or oil in this mix! You'll notice it on paper but not in flavour!)

Mix first four ingredients in a large bowl. Make a well in the centre. Add remaining 3 ingredients to the well and beat them together slightly before stirring the whole thing together. Now spoon this into your greased muffin pans (or sprayed with Pam etc.). Bake at 375F for 17 minutes. Voila! Delectable, easy, wonderful yumminess. Makes 24 (which for the 5 of my kids who eat solids are all gone in one breakfast....I'm not kidding)

This morning I made them "surprise" muffins by making one dozen as above, and for the other dozen I filled the muffin tins half full, then added a dollop of raspberry jam (or pie filling etc) and then finished filling them with the muffin batter. When they were baked you couldn't tell one from the other and the kids were delighted to find the surprises in some of them.

So there you are. I love this breakfast. I have the recipe memorized now and can have the batter ready before the oven has heated up, so it feels like a real quick and easy thing to do in the morning. Please let me know if you try them how you like them. Enjoy!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

How I Learned of God's Omnipresence

This week's Carnival of Beauty is on the Beauty of Sunshine. I had no trouble thinking of something to share this week. It is one of my favourite memories and a real "aha" moment. So, I want you to use your imagination as you read and really try to put yourself in my barefeet so you too can feel the same way that I did that September day almost 7 years ago.

I was away at my favourite bed and breakfast that my dear husband usually sends me to once a year for a solitude weekend. I had spent the weekend resting, reading, praying and enjoying the company of my 6 month old daughter who had accompanied me. Truth be told, I was also watching quite a bit of the Summer Olympics from Australia, as I do really enjoy watching these beautifully dedicated men and women pushing themselves to their physical limits and beyond. All in all it was a simply perfect weekend.

It was our last evening there and I really felt compelled to go and watch the sunset over the lake with my wee daughter. I wrapped her up in blankets and tiptoed across the quiet, grassy hills to the perfect vantage point and waited. It was so remarkably beautiful, and I felt praise for the Lord welling up in my heart. I wanted to sing to Him and worship Him there on that hillside, but as I tried to open my mouth, nothing came out. Just tears flowing down my cheeks as I realized that, as John Piper says, often the first and most appropriate response in worship is silence. So as I sat basking in the beauty and power of this sunset, I waited quietly as nature worshipped the Lord in ways with which I could never compete.

Knowing the walk home was a little tricky underfoot, especially with a baby in tow, I left my lakeside altar before the sun had completed its descent. I returned to my bed and breakfast with the glowing sun behind me, just in time to see a Canadian winning the broad daylight.

And then it struck me. I know my geography just well enough to know that Australia is really really far away from my little place in Canada. I also know that the sun is really really big. However, I don't think I realized until that moment that I could be seeing the sun go from low in my sky to horizon while the rest of the world was seeing it too. Somehow I was astonished at the size of the sun and its 'presence' over all the earth. But how much moreso then, the size of my Lord, the presence of my Lord throughout the whole earth...all the every place and circumstance...omnipresent.

The beautiful sunshine that day shrunk my world and expanded my view of my Father. I was so thankful for the insight He gave me that day. I am learning to trust in His constant 'everywhereness' everyday, so that no matter where I am, what I'm doing, I can know without a doubt that He is before me, beside me, behind me...hemming me in on all sides. And He is there with you wherever you are too. Too high for me to grasp. Too lofty for me to comprehend. But I'm trying.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Hard lessons

My dear daughter is taking piano lessons as I have mentioned before, and is doing quite well. When she first started I never had to remind her to practice. Every time she walked by the piano she would play a song or two, run through her scales and then hop on to the next thing to occupy her time.

As time has worn on though, the days can tick by without a spontaneous note being struck. If I remind her, she willingly sits and plays for 20 minutes or so, but it needs to be mentioned to her. If I don't bring it up, she doesn't play....and so here we were today.

Realizing a lesson was coming up and no practicing had been happening for sometime, she sat and began to play. It didn't come as easily as it sometimes does, and so she was frustrated. I tried to help her along and remind her of what she knew how to do. I reminded her that as the novelty of taking lessons wore off the hard work of practicing would catch up with her. And with a sigh, and a tear on her cheek she said this deep insight:

I wish I could learn it without having to actually learn it.

Ah Lord, how many lessons do I wish you would teach me without me actually having to do the learning bit.

I want you to teach me patience, without making me wait; teach me humility, without making me look foolish; teach me contentment, without denying me the things I want; teach me sacrificial love, without actually costing me anything.

But you don't work that way. So let me be a willing student as you are the perfect, patient tutor.

Monday, May 7, 2007


I was lurking over at Amy's Blog which is a place I love to visit, but seldom comment (so rude I know...I'm sure no one would ever not comment on my blog...). In her side bar she had this link to an outrageous article. How about this little excerpt:

"Having large families should be frowned upon as an environmental misdemeanour in the same way as frequent long-haul flights, driving a big car and failing to reuse plastic bags, says a report to be published today by a green think tank."

I put it in green so you could see my environmental agreement to their arguement...not. Seriously. Out of all the reasons to put out there for the necessity and moral superiority of a small family this must be the lamest. Right up there with socialization as the reason not to homeschool.

However, for the record, now that we have 6 children and I can do nothing about shrinking my family size, I have at least told them to only breath every third time they have the urge.

Hope that helps.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007


Last summer my darling husband planted 3 fruit trees in our yard. 1 peach, 1 pear, 1 apple. Our apple tree, however, was the victim of a nasty neighbor who decided to jump/climb it (even though it is but a sapling). I shouldn't be so harsh. We didn't actually see anyone climbing the tree. We are just assuming. Let's give them the benefit of the doubt and say it was a strong wind that attacked my tree. There, that's nicer. Still, after this incident a large branch at the center of the tree was broken, nearly all the way through. It was just barely connected. Since it was nearing the end of the growing year, my husband decided that next spring we'd likely just need to dig it up and try again with a new one.

Imagine my surprise, then, when I walked around the yard looking at signs of spring and saw my lovely apple tree in blossom...even on the broken branch.

The beautiful flowers over this branch that we had assumed was dead was such a sign of hope for me. John 15:2 and 5 remind us that Jesus is our true vine and we are the branches. Every branch that abides in the vine will bear fruit. This passage always conjures up the picture of a solid connection, deeply rooted, firmly grafted. This is true enough. And quite often I find myself in such a solid place that this verse is a comfort.

Still other times though, I feel rather disconnected. I feel like I'm wandering away and that I've broken fellowship with the Lord. In these times, this passage is terrifying. How connected , or how unconnected, have I been over my life? How much fruit, or lack of it, is showing in my life? In those broken days, is there any of the Spirit still at work in me?

And then I see those beautiful flowers on my broken apple tree, and I feel hope. The Lord is strong enough to hold on to me tight, and His Spirit is living enough to fill me up, even when I am feeling disconnected. It is because of Him, not me, that I bear fruit. It is because of Him, not me, that I have life.

I know that this spring, as we tend to our broken branch and graft it a little tighter to the main trunk, that branch will grow healthier, stronger, and more likely to bear much fruit. As I bind myself more tightly to my Lord, and graft myself into His wounds, I know that I too will grow stronger and more fruitful.

But in the meantime, those wee blossoms remind me, that once I am in the palm of the Lord, no one can snatch me away and His life is still flowing in my veins. Thank You Lord.

Saturday, April 28, 2007


I'm into deep thoughts today. Are you ready? I know it is Saturday afternoon and my brain should be mush, but I just drank a French Vanilla Cappucino so I'm having a lucid moment. I actually have 2 deep thoughts (shocking!) but I will save the other one for Monday (ooh...cliff hanger). But seriously, here is some good Fuel.

My wee daughter has not been receiving passing grades in the sleep department of late. She is 10 months old and really should be a stellar sleeper according to her past track record, and what I've experienced in our other children. Alas, it is not so. The last few weeks have seen me up with her in the middle of the night, often more than once. Sometimes I feed her and tuck her back in, other times I let her try to settle back in on her own. Either way the next night is the same. And either way, I am exhausted. In the day time she cries herself to sleep, only to wake up early from her nap. As I am crying out to the Lord and confessing sins and seeking out why the Lord is trying to get my attention with this lack of sleep, my husband, very practically and logically, says "I think she is over tired. I think she needs shorter wake times, and more naps."

Being an obedient, submissive, and clearly out of ideas of my own, kind of wife, I try it. And wouldn't you know it....he was right. (as usual). All she needed was more rest.

Did you hear that? Ah, the moment of truth. So this is what the Lord was trying to tell me. This is what He was getting my attention for. Dear girl, all you need is to rest in Me.

I've been loving this post and have read it several times now. Mrs.Pages seems to know my heart and my need for a waiting, resting spirit.

As I was praying about my baby's sleep and the message the Lord might have for me, I fell asleep and had a dream full of frustration, temper, and discontent on my part. At some point in the dream, a friend of mine looked at me and said "You know, things would go better for you if you didn't always have to be in control."

Ah yes. Back to the control issue. Lord, help me to rest in You, to trust in Your ways, to wait for Your timing, and to keep my hands folded in my lap with self-control as I let You handle all the stuff in my life.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

She did well!

Yes, a little update from yesterday. My wee girl played very well and of course we were all thrilled. But the best part was her response to the BIG question: So, how do you feel?

I feel really good. That was fun. I think I'd like to do that again. I didn't win but tying for 3rd place is place is really good especially since it was my first festival ever.

Yahoo! The Lord is good. I'm so thankful that she definitely takes after her father in this area....funny, most of the good points about her come from her dad. I think all she got from me was her quick way with sarcasm....not really a great thing.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Momma Bear

My first born, precious, vulnerable, so young, not yet wounded, unaware of how cruel the world can be daughter has her very first piano festival competition today. She's actually feeling pretty good.

I'm scared spitless.

Okay, I know my father-in-law is not a huge fan of that phrase so let me say it another way....I'm worried like a momma bear wanting to protect her little cub. She has been practicing so hard, and really is doing quite well, but under pressure I'm afraid she'll wobble. And I don't really care how she does on my end. I know I am going to be beaming at my wee girl and clapping louder than everyone else. Heck, I might even tear up a little (shocking, I know). But for her....oh if she fails or feels like she has, I hope she recovers.

My biggest issue (tied with a few others) is never having had (or felt like I had) the freedom to fail. To do your best, screw up, and go, "hey, at least I tried". Nope. Not me. Didn't matter how prepared or how pleased everyone was for me, I felt like I had disappointed the world and made an.....ahem, fool of myself. And then of course the opposite struggle that if I did well, then maybe finally people would like me.

I don't want that to be born into my daughter today.

So Lord I pray that you will guard my little Garbanzo Bean (she hates it when I call her that) from feeling the pain of failure, or the puffed up pride of success. Help her to see her performance today, however it goes, in the light of enjoying music, loving doing our best for You, and not finding 'who' she is in 'what' she does. (okay, and help me learn the same things too....I'm not too old to get it, am I?)

Monday, April 16, 2007

What Did You See This Weekend?

My good friend wrote a lovely post today about her wonderful weekend, and ended with the question "What did you see this weekend?" I was going to leave a comment on her blog to answer, but as I know she checks in here I thought I'd post my reply instead.

This weekend I saw my 88 year old grandma, who is doing pretty good for an old girl. She loved on my little ones with hugs and kisses, new colouring books and homemade brownines ("because one or two won't hurt them"). She cuddled my baby, marvelling at the blessing of having 13 great-grandchildren (almost half of whom are mine!) who are all in perfect health, beautiful and bright. She told me about stories I'd heard before, and mentioned again how much she still misses my grandpa, even though it has been 11 years. So in her I saw a woman who is living everyday of her life the best she can, with love, and was humbled by her praise of my parenting in light of her years of expertise.

Then I saw my husband patiently loving his wife and children even in his fatigue. Listening to one more child's account of our day, giving one more tickle and zerbert. I saw him praise them for their spontaneous act of service in 'weeding our garden' and setting our our patio furniture for our first bar-be-que of the year.

Then I saw our church family rally around each other in love, worshipping together in Spirit and in truth. I saw the heart of our pastor as he confessed a weakness of his from the pulpit. I saw my own sin come before me as he challenged us to love one another (I mean really love, even those we don't like) and I realized the biggest challenge in that for me was to start with my self. So I saw my heavenly Father patiently scratching away another layer of hurt and sin in my life to 'un-dragon' me. And I didn't feel condemned by him,....just loved.

And then I saw my children fast asleep in our car....peaceful....with out in our family's strength and our Lord's covering....and in that I saw that despite my failings and my fears, the Lord is having His way with our family, both immediate and extended. I cannot fix all our problems no matter how hard I try. Only His hand of love will push and pull us onto His path. And wouldn't you know it....He is doing it.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

C.S. Lewis is Brilliant

hope you have a cup of tea, a kleenex, and several minutes as you visit here today. I intend to do a lot of copy work to practice my typing. Well, that 's not why. But I am going to extensively quote from The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C.S. Lewis. Now, I'm not just copying it out for the sake of a good read. No, I have something a little deeper in mind.

First, some audience participation: Call to mind that one thing (or maybe several things) that plague you. Maybe it is a besetting sin you can't break free of, or a word curse spoken over you that you have carried with you for years. Is it chronic impatience? Faithlessness? Greed? Pride? Addiction? Anger? Grudges? Self-loathing? Fear of failure? Fear of the future? Only you know what it is that keeps you up at night. I have mine in mind too. Okay? Ready? Now picture that thing like a heavy skin over you. Put yourself in the position of Eustace in the following excerpt, who had been turned into a dragon with scales and all. I'm sure like him you want to be free of your scales. I'm sure like him you've tried to shake them off in your own strength and power, with no success. I'm sure like him you want to bathe in the Living Waters. Now read these words as if they are your own "after" story:

The Lion told me I must undress.... I was just going to say that I couldn't undress because I hadn't any clothes on when I suddenly thought that dragons are snaky sort of things and snakes can cast their skins. Oh, of course, thought I, that's what the Lion means. So I started scratching myself and my scales began coming off all over the place. And then I scratched a little deeper and, instead of just scales coming off here and there, my whole skin started peeling off beautifully, like it does after an illness, or as if I was a banana. In a minute or two I just stepped out of it. I could see it lying there beside me, looking rather nasty. It was a most lovely feeling. So I started to go down into the well for my bathe.
But just as I was going to put my feet into the water I looked down and saw that they were all hard and rough and wrinkled and scaly just as they had been before. Oh, that's all right, said I, it only means I had another smaller suit on underneath the first one, and I'll have to get out of it too. So I scratched and tore again and this under skin peeled off beautifully and out I stepped and left it lying beside the other one and went down to the well for my bathe.
Well, exactly the same thing happened again. And I thought to myself, oh dear, how ever many skins have I got to take off? For I was longing to bathe my leg. So I scratched away for the third time and got off a third skin, just like the two others, and stepped out of it. But as soon as I looked at myself in the water I knew it had been no good.

Are you still with me? Is this sounding familiar? How many times Lord have I tried to stop my sin, tried to change my attitude, but to no avail?

Then the Lion said..."you will have to let me undress you." I was afraid of his claws, I can tell you, but I was pretty nearly desperate now. So I just lay flat down on my back to let him do it.
The very first tear he made was so deep that I thought it had gone right into my heart. And when he began pulling the skin off, it hurt worse than anything I've ever felt. The only thing that made me able to bear it was just the pleasure of feeling the stuff peel off. You know - if you've ever picked a scab of a sore place. It hurts like billy-oh but it is such fun to see it coming away....
Well, he peeled the beastly sfuff right off - just as I thought I'd done it myself the other three times, only they hadn't hurt - and there it was lying on the grass: only ever so much thicker, and darker, and more knobbly looking than the others had been. And there was I as smooth and soft as a peeled switch and smaller than I had been. Then he caught hold of me - I didn't like that much for I was very tender underneath now that I'd no skin on - and threw me into the water. It smarted like anything, but only for a moment. After that it became perfectly delicious.... After a bit the lion took me out and dressed me - .... in new clothes - the same I've got on now, as a matter of fact..... and [I've] been - well, un-dragoned.
2 Corinthians 5:17 "Therefore if any man is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come"
Hebrews 12:11 "All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness."
Isaiah 1:18 "Though your sins are as scarlet, they will be white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, they will be like wool."
Lord, thank You for being ruthless in Your cleansing of my heart. More and deeper Lord, I pray. My sin is ever before me and only You can put it far from me. You have not dealt with me according to my sins, nor rewarded me according to my iniquities. Rather, as far as the east is from the west so far have You removed my transgressions from me (Psalm 103:10-12). Change me through and through. And let me never be the same again.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

The Destination is Worth The Journey

Thursday night, after a most moving Maundy Thursday service, I found myself driving home very late at night on some treacherous roads. It was the last (Lord Willing!) snow of the year and I was caught in the midst of it. What ought to have been a 54 minute drive (but who's counting) ended up being 1 hour and 45 minutes.

As I drove, white-knuckled and shoulders to my ears, I prayed (through my clenched teeth and sore jaw). I prayed for the storm to stop. I prayed for the roads to clear. I prayed to GET HOME. I prayed for the road home to miraculously shorten. I prayed for skilled driving on my behalf. I prayed there would be no other cars on the road (you know, less obstacles to hit should I spin out of control). I just wanted it to stop.

I even considered on more than one occassion how I could get myself out of this jam. If I turn here, I could spend the night at my in-laws. But no. What about my still-nursing baby waiting for me at home? Who would feed her in the morning? If I turn here, I could spend the night at my parents' house. But no. It really isn't that much closer and the roads are more curvy and hilly.

And then the thought came. What if I just pull into some farmer's driveway and wait it out until daylight? Maybe just sitting here in a cold car with no food, blanket, or even weather appropriate clothes wouldn't be so bad. It might just be better than continuing home. Certainly easier. Certainly requires less faith. Sadly along with that thought came a split second consideration that was a little frightening. I could just drive as fast as normal, spin out of control, sail over the guard rail and wake up in heaven. That might be the easiest yet. Yet also, it would have been the coward's errand.

And so I thought again about my children tucked tightly in their beds and how I wanted to see their chubby faces in the morning. I thought about my husband waiting in our bed, keeping it warm for me, probably snoring, completely unaware of my current stress, and getting ready to steal the sheets when I crawl in beside him. Then I realized: I had to push through this storm to get to the better part. I thought about the service I had just attended and the call to live our lives through the resurrection power of Jesus.

The Word says in Hebrews 12: 2 that Christ endured the cross by focusing on the Joy set before Him. He knew that the End was worth the Means. That is the resurrection power that lives in us now so that we can say with Paul:
"I press on in order that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus...forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward to goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." (Phil. 3:12-14)

As I crawled in to bed that night beside my husband, safe and sound once again, I realized it was worth driving through that storm to get here. Lord, grant me that vision as I travel through the storms of life that I would persevere knowing that the prize of Christ-likeness at the end is well worth the pain and fear I endure along the way. Thank You for loving me enough to let trials like these come to get my attention and draw me back to You. (Heb. 12:4-11)

Friday, April 6, 2007

Good Friday

Today is always a special day for my heart. There is almost something more precious to me about Good Friday than Easter Morning. The idea that Christ would suffer for things that were my fault, that He would do the thing that fixes my mistakes, that He would die so I could live is to me the more stunning thing. Not that Him raising Himself from the dead isn't amazing, but He is God after all. There is a bit of an expectation in my mind that He could do that.

But to willingly say "It's alright, my sister. I see your sins, I know the punishment that is coming your way because of them. I want you to live and serve our Father. I will take that pain for you." ....that is a miracle I can barely fathom. Thank You Lord. You are so good. (and what a sad understatement that is).

It's like when I try to explain to my husband how shocked I continue to be that a) he married me and b) seems to still think it was a good idea. For him it was just the most natural thing to do. For me, it seems to be an otherworldly act that I can't grasp. For Christ, dying on the cross was the right thing to do, and the thing He wanted to do.... I can't get it.
But on a lighter note, maybe this year I will do some Eastery crafts and things with a meaningful touch to really highlight some of this season's beauty. Here is a great recipe that I might actually try. Sounds pretty yummy, not to mention actually useful for teaching the Easter story. Now this looks very cool, but as some of you know painting in my house is a major ordeal, so adding eggs to the mix (literally) sounds not only messy, but expensive. Still, my kids would think I was supermom if I did it. (maybe I'll let Oma know, and she can try it sometime! hee hee).

Regardless, I've been thinking about song lyrics the worship team will be singing on Sunday Morning. One song is pretty repetitive and simple, but sometimes those are the deepest ones. The chorus simply says, over and over, "I've Found Jesus" and I think I need to take this out of the "running-to-the-empty-tomb-and-then-turning-around-at-the-sound-of-his-voice" context and think daily, as I look around at my kids, my calling, my marriage, my circumstances....I've Found Jesus. Seeing Him in the details is going to be the goal this week, and all the weeks ahead.

Because of You every Friday is good Lord, every day is good. You are GOOD! Thank You.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Top Ten List

I just read this over at my friend's blog and was inspired to do a variation. Here are:

The Top 10 Comments I Hear When I Leave The House With All My Kids
10. Are they all yours?
9. Don't you know what causes this?
8. You should watch more T.V.
7. You must be busy!
6. I couldn't do that.
5. You must be very patient.
4. You must homeschool.
3. Are they twins or triplets?
2. Be glad they're not boys.
And (drum roll please) the Number 1 Comment I Hear When I Leave the House With All My Kids
1. What kind of car do you drive? A bus?
Well, I'm sure you've heard the same, or worse. At least now we can say that we are the proud owners of a new (to us) GMC Safari, otherwise known as the "Christian Mobile" by a lady here in town. Seems all the large-ish families drive one (you know, before they get so big they need to buy a bus). So sorry, Onfire, you are going to have to memorize my new license plate....once I figure it out myself!

Monday, March 26, 2007

When Will My Grumpy, Selfish, Judgmental Attitude Go Away?

disclaimer: for those of you who don't want to actually get to know the real me, stop reading now. This post is going to be a little too honest.

Do you ever wonder how long it will take for the Lord to complete that good work in you that He started. You know, the one He will be faithful to perfect? yeah. me too.

So here I am in Church yesterday and the service was run by the guys from Teen Challenge. They are full of life men who were previously addicted to drugs and alcohol and who have found freedom and new life in Christ. The program is fantastically successful (is fantastically even a word?) and the men have the most stirring testimonies. So I was really enjoying the service.

And then I saw one of the guys, and for a moment, actually for a long moment, I was pretty convinced that I knew him. Not only did I think I knew him, but I thought he was my boss (who I didn't really get along with very well) from my days of working at Tim Horton's (a job I really loathed. Stay tuned. There is a blog coming about that). Here's where the old sin nature in me rears its ugly head. I was just dying to know if was him or not. My stomach got all full of knots as I remembered what it felt like to work for him. I remembered how small and stupid I felt working for this guy who made himself look pretty big and impressive at his employees expense. And so instead of looking with Christian compassion at him and thinking "Wow. Is that him? I wonder if he's okay. How sad that he must have hit bottom, but thank God for His mercies and for this program to show him the way" I looked at him with my old sinful heart and for a moment thought "Now how do you feel, Mr. Wonderful. Guess now I'm the one who's "got it all together"."

Seriously? How can I be like that? We had just sung praises and worshipped our Lord with lyrics like "To You I lift up my soul, In You is all my hope", and "You set my feet upon a rock, You made my footstep sure", and "We are the broken, You are the Healer", and boy did I mean those things. Really really. Except then not 20 minutes later I am revelling in the thought that someone else might be in that same pit that I have supposedly been lifted out of!

Lord, my heart is two-sided. I am a sad representative of your forgiveness. I am too much like the man in Jesus' parable who was forgiven an enormous debt by the King and then proceeded to require payment from another man who only owed him a little. Rend my heart. Pour into me the compassion for my fellow man, even those who have hurt me, so that I can be like You, who had compassion on me, even though I killed Your Son. Let me not be the kind of person who wants to see my enemies "get what's coming to them" in such a vindictive and caustic way. And mostly, forgive my lying lips that in one minute praises You for being my redeemer, and then in the next mocks a man (whoever he was) for needing that same redemption. We have ALL sinned and fallen short of Your glory. Let me not be proud that I have not sinned "in that way". As if my sin was any more appealing to You. I'm sorry that for all the work You have done and are doing in my life that I am stil so resistant and that I'm making so much more work for You to do.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Photographs Don't Lie (But Sometimes I Wish They Would)

I have a photograph of myself that I like to keep as "Motivation" (read: punishment). It is from a million years ago when I was 21 and my husband and I were visiting the Grand Canyon. What is interesting about it is that I am unbelievably skinny. And so the "motivation" (read: torture). I like to drag it out every so often to "motivate" me to get back to that weight, that happier time (as if weighing close to nothing is a remedy for stress). But here is where the truth of the photo comes in: I used to be skinny. Now I'm not. Hmmm. Can't deny it. It is right there in black and white (literally).

Okay: another example. My wedding album is filled with truly gorgeous pictures of truly happy people. Except for one. The photo that my sister decided to show up for clearly communicates the tensions in my side of the family. There we all are, "smiling". But the mood in that picture is in stark contrast to the genuine love my family is exuding in every other picture. You can tell by her 'smile' that she would rather be any where else, and you can tell by our 'smiles' that we are well aware that she would rather be any where else but we don't quite know what to do about it.

Okay: another example. How about a happy one this time. I am holding my wee baby girl at the local fall fair in the baby competition (yes, I realize that is a little pathetic) and I am smiling. Really smiling. The smile of a woman content with her choice to change her mind and want another baby even though she knows it is going to be hard, tiring work, but who understands there is a joy to be had here in just holding this little one and showing her off (and all that she represents) to the whole world. (I hope you are okay with run-on sentences...). The truth in this photo is that I can see that when I do what the Lord puts on my heart to do, I have that look of contentment all over me because it is oozing out from the inside.

It is kind of like the Bible. The Word is compared to a mirror in that when we read the Word our true selves are revealed. So, I can't keep saying to myself "I've always been fat and so I'll always be fat" now that I've seen that skinny picture. In the same way, I can't say "God will never forgive me for that" now that I've read His promises to forgive. The Beauty of Photographs, is that they truly represent who we once were, where we once went, what we once saw. The Beauty of the Word is that it truly conveys the Truth of who God is, what He has done, and who we can be through His grace.

Lord, let me use the photos of my history to see your hand in my life. To remind me of who I was, and who You are making me to be. Thank You.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Good Enough To Eat

The other morning, as my family was dashing out the door to a homeschool event, my dear son said the most remarkable thing to me. I was feeling a little frumpy that morning (can anyone relate?) so to perk up a bit, I spritzed on some of my perfume ("Obsession" for those of you who want to know).

As I was buckling the baby into her car seat and doing up my son's shoes, he leans in and says, "You smell good, Mommy. So good I think I want to bite your neck and eat you! Why do you smell so good?"

And so began a conversation on perfume. However, if I had really been on the ball, I would have made it an object lesson and said, "Well, Thanks be to God, who always leads us in His triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place. (2 Cor. 2:15)" Well, that might have been a bit much.

Still, the fact remains that when Christ is dwelling in us we exude an aroma, a fragrance, that is pleasing to Him and to those who are being saved around us. And the Word challenges us to "Taste and see that the Lord is good. (Ps.34:8)" If we are open to enjoying the fragrance of His presence, maybe we will be bold enough to 'take a bite' and experience Him fully. That is true satisfaction! And hopefully that fragrance will be a better fix for the 'frumpy' days when they come.

Lord, let us be like that garland of grace that is made of Your fragrance. Let us be noticeably beautiful to those around us, both those being saved and those perishing. And let us seek You for the fulfillment we desire. And in the meantime, thank you for precious sons who love their mommas.

He Shall Add Bitterness

This morning with my children, we discussed one of the bible accounts of Moses and the Israelites in the wilderness. Remember the story when they were desperately thirsty, they found water and it was dreadfully bitter? Okay, so that is what we were discussing.

I reminded my second born that the meanings of her first and second names, when put together, are "He shall add bitterness". I told her that this story in the scriptures helps to explain why that is not a bad name-meaning for such a beautiful girl.

The year she was born came in the middle of some very difficult years for us. My husband and I had some very large and difficult life decisions to make primarily regarding his work. But his work change was actually just a symbol of the greater whole of what the Lord was doing in our lives. He was breaking us down so that He could build us up His way. They were years of tearing down old, false foundations so we could lay firm foundations on things that would last. They were years where I cried out from my heart with the psalmist:
"Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am pining away....but Thou, O Lord, How long?.... I am weary with my sighing; Every night I make my bed swim, I dissolve my couch with my tears. My eye has wasted away with grief." (Ps. 6)
And yet in the middle of those years, He was so overwhelmingly gracious to us, physically, emotionally, financially, spiritually...abundantly meeting all of our needs and shaping us into vessels He could use.

This is what I wanted the children to notice in the Bible story for the morning: In the middle of their bitter time, the Lord granted sweet springs. He still works that miracle today. In the middle of our bitter times, He provides sweet springs of living water. So yes, He shall add bitterness, but along with it comes the sweet miracle of hope.
"For the Lord has heard my weeping. The Lord has heard my supplication, The Lord receives my prayer." (Ps. 6)

Thursday, March 1, 2007

Too Much Information

At my Sign Language class on Monday I was privy to a most discouraging conversation. I am clearly the "old mother hen" in this group of College girls. There are two women there who are likely older than me, but, judging on their comments in class, they are definitely in a different paradigm than myself.

So somehow the conversation began: "When did you hear 'the talk'?" With some trepidation and a little curiousity I waited to see where this would go. One by one these girls talked and laughed about how they learned everything from health class in public school, videos in high school, teen magazines and all-nighters, and well-intentioned, but embarrasing chats from mom. These chats from mom were always accompanied by a box of condoms "because you'll need these". One of the ladies, a mom of preteens, said "I tell my children everything, and I mean everything. I want them to hear it from me, and I want them to hear it early so that I can put my spin on it. I tell them not to tell others at school who may not be ready to hear about sex yet, but for my children...I want them to know details so they can make the right decisions."

Now, if I listen to the "experts in sexual education", these girls must be the most responsible and 'safe' girls around. And I, in contrast, must have been recklessly endangering myself on a regular basis at their age because I never really did get "the talk".

Still, the evidence points to the contrary. I am the one in the room having had only one partner, no diseases contracted, and 6 children all born in a healthy marriage relationship. These poor girls, in contrast, are constantly talking about this boyfriend and that, and whose going on a vacation (one with her boyfriend and one without because "you never know who you'll meet", and whose sister is pregnant at 18, and whose cousin is having an abortion, and whose baby will be nearly a year at her mother's wedding....

Don't get me wrong: I made plenty of mistakes growing up, and sinned in relationships too. But God has been gracious to keep me fairly innocent inspite of my foolishness. These girls, supposedly armed and educated by the best, are walking, if not running, headlong into dangerous, costly sin....and then bragging about it.

The Word implores us to be 'excellent at what is good, and innocent of evil'. These poor girls have been fed a lie, loudly and repeatedly, that random relationships are not evil, but rather, part of a strong sense of self and a right they should exercise.

Lord, have mercy on this and the coming generation. And give Your people the wisdom and the clarity to teach our children modesty, and rightly placed confidence, and a picture of Your beautiful plan for relationships.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

What Happened on the Way to Sign Language Class (or: Why I'm Glad God's Timing Is Perfect)

Monday nights I drive to our local college for Sign Language Classes. I've been really enjoying the drive these last few weeks as I get to actually leave during the remaining day light, instead of the pitch blackness of deep winter.

Last night I left a few minutes earlier than usual. And I do mean minutes. Maybe even 45 seconds. But it made all the difference.

We live on a dead end street with 2 stop signs before you reach the main highway that goes through our small town. As I approached the first stop sign I saw a van driving towards me from the 2nd stop sign at a high rate of speed. So fast in fact, that when he reached the top of the hill at that 1st stop sign (right where I was coming to a nice full stop) he actually caught air. That's right: this GMC Safari actually had all four wheels off the ground. I watched in amazement through my rear view mirror as the vehicle landed, skidded and swerved, and, with some difficultly, came to a stop. They then turned around and drove back out to the highway where I saw them race though town, passing me in the process. As I followed them (at a distance now, because of their speed) I saw them enter the parking lot of our local Tim Hortons. I stopped at the Petro Can across the street and called 911 on the pay phone to report the reckless driving I witnessed. Whether or not the police were able to follow through on the call, I don't know. The van left TIm's before the Police arrived. And as I expected, they drove exceedingly fast towards the city down the highway, and disappeared into the darkening night.

What struck me is two things: 1st, how angry I was and indignant at the audacity of these young men, going for a joy ride in such a reckless way. 2nd, how thankful I am that I left just those few seconds earlier. Had I not, I would have been in the middle of the road as they were trying to gain control of their vehicle after their short flight. It would not have gone well for me, I'm sure. This led to a thought of "What if the neighbors were out on the road on their snowmobiles, like they sometimes do in the evening? What if the neighbor was walking her dog? What if my children were on the edge of the road playing in the piles of snow left by the snow plow?...."

And then I was even more angry. People often say "It only affects me, so who cares" about all kinds of behaviour: smoking, reckless driving, even homosexual relationships. Society is such a self-centered, individualist mess that there is no sensitivity or considerations of others. In a world where tolerance and acceptance are preached (meaning 'anything goes') all I see is an increasing lack of concern for how one's actions affect others. This boys thought they were having fun; they could have killed someone. Maybe they did. Maybe I'll find out that later that evening they were involved in a serious car accident. Who knows.

What I do know, is that I'm thankful for the Lord's timing and protection for me and my family last night. "The Lord will guard your going out and your coming in from this time forth and forever more." Psalm 121:8

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Humbled, Again

My wee 4 year old princess came to me today and with great enthusiasm and affection said "I love you Mommy". I made the foolish decision to ask "Why do you love me, honey?" How thrilled I was with the first part of her answer: "Because you are smart, and you know things" then the sweet pause, then "Don't you?" Hmmmm. Do I?

It was like my life flashed before my eyes: Of course I know things. I make brilliant homemade soups and entrees, quite often with no recipe. I now know how to bake really healthy bread from scratch, and I've learned how to cast on and off in knitting. I used to be a University student, I am now studying Sign Language at a College Night course. I can fix nearly any boo-boo that comes our way, not to mention recite nearly every nursery rhyme ever penned. I have sonnets memorized by both John Donne and Shakespeare. I even took Calculus and Algebra in my last year of high school, and took French right into first year of University! Whew! Let me tell you, I know things.

Of course, the humbling quickly comes when I realize that seriously none of that matters one wit.

The Word says that "The foolishness of God is wiser than men" (1 Cor. 1:25) and that He "has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise" (1Cor. 1:27). So what do I care how un-knowing I am? What profit is it for me to have gained any wisdom, unless it furthers the Kingdom of Heaven and makes my Father Glorious?

My desire is that someday when my dear princess tells me she loves me, her reason why will be because I have led her closer to the foot of the cross. And hopefully that will be all I cling to as well.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Can It Really Be True?

Several years ago I managed to sneak away to a Ladies' Retreat with my church just weeks before my 4th child was to be born. The highlight of these retreats was a beautifully laid out half day of prayer. We were given a booklet full of scripture, aids to prayer, aids to confession, devotional thoughts, praise lyrics and the like to fill our 3 hours of solitude with the Lord. I looked forward to this part of the weekend more than the escape from daily life, more than the meals I didn't have to cook and the dishes I didn't have to clean. Just a time to really be with the Lord and to hear from Him and to get right with Him again.

I suppose it was the "getting right" part that I expected would take centre stage. I spent the first 2 hours of my time alone trying to find that "thing" I needed to confess: That one benchmark sin that I had been holding onto, or hadn't 'fully' confessed to date. I dredged up things from my past, I fine-tooth-combed my present issues, and then extrapolated to what sins might come up in the future. And still, I felt no satisfaction, no reconciliation, no real sense of having met with the Lord.

And then Isaiah. My eyes stumbled on a passage that I'm sure I had never seen before:
"I, even I, am the one who wipes out your transgression for My own sake; And I will not remember your sins." Is. 43:25
What? Could this really be true? I mean I knew He forgave my sins, I figured He must overlook my sins, but to think He wouldn't remember my sins...entirely earth shaking. I always imagined standing before the Judgement Throne with Father looking at me and seeing - remembering - all my sins, but loving me anyway because Christ was there covering me. I never imagined He would actually 'not remember' them.

But I couldn't stop there. What about me? Is there a way, Lord, I begged, that I too could 'not remember' my sin? I was led to turn to Isaiah 53:4
"Fear Not, for you will not be put to shame; Neither feel humiliated, for you will not be disgraced; But you will forget the shame of your youth, and the reproach of your widowhood you will remember no more."
Yes! This is what I was longing for. I prayed and thanked the Lord for this revelation and asked that He would burn the truth into my heart so that I would not forget it.

As I returned home, my thoughts stayed with these insights, and as I meditated on these passages I found out even more beautiful aspects of these truths. The word 'remember' as used in the first passage I mentioned implies "Calling to mind, Looking at, or Considering" Ahh, release. Now I knew that when the memory of those sins came to haunt me I could in all honesty say "this is not from the Lord. I have confessed this, it is forgotten. He has wiped out my transgression and will not remember them or call them to mind." In fact He has turned His gaze from them and has stopped considering them as part of who I am.

All of this certainly gave me a deeper, more beautiful understanding of Isaiah 1:18
"Though your sins are as scarlet, they will be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, they will be like wool."
This is not just a painting over or a covering up. This is not just a glaze that can be scratched away or seen through. This is a new beginning with the past erased. Thank you Lord for such a gift. I pray You will enable me to walk in it daily.

Monday, February 12, 2007

I Should Know This By Now

At Church on Sunday, our Pastor gave a very helpful sermon. While I'll spare you all the details, I will share with you the two points to mull over. Here's the final two points to go home and mull over:

I need to love God more and more.
I need to care what people think about me less and less.
Sounds easy. Looks beautiful. Hard to master. The good part is is that apparently the two go hand in hand. The more you love God and live like you do, the more you will need to care less about what people think, because it could start to be unfavorable. Mind you, the less you care about what people think, the more inclined you'll be to just love God more and more.

Funny though, I'm pretty sure that I've been working through this for some time now. Particularly the 'caring less' part. As I mentioned in a previous blog (Christmas Story, Daily Truth) I am fairly driven by fear, particularly fear of man. So this lesson from this sermon is a bit of a trick for me.

Still, Lord, I believe You are calling me to it. I believe the life you are asking me to lead will cause (or is causing) many to think I'm a fool. Yet, with faith and eyes fixed on You help me to press ahead into Your will and Your ways. For only then will I be truly satisfied.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Noses...Why the fascination

This will be short today.
Why do children insist on shoving small objects up their noses?
And why do they do it when you are already feeling like maybe we should just close shop for the rest of the day?
And why do they have to be round things that spin when you try to pinch them with tweezers?
And why do they never do it when Daddy is home?

I'd love to hear your "up the nose" experiences. I'm sure you all have one (a story, that is). We have two.
If you can find any relavent scriptures that I can find wisdom from today regarding noses I'd like it. The closest I can think of is this paraphrase: "It is easier to get a gold shiny bead out of a 3 year old nose than it is for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of Heaven." I came up with that myself. Not bad.

Friday, February 9, 2007

A Shocking Realization

I have recently come to a most shocking realization. Maybe you have discovered this for yourself already. Maybe you haven't, and you really need to. Are you ready? This is life changing for me.

My children actually like me. And your children actually like you.

This may not seem to be a staggering truth at first glance, but let me explain the sheer magnitude of this fact.
First, I've given them lots of reasons to not like me. You know, like saying "No" to them for no reason other than that to say yes would make a mess for me to clean up, make my work take longer, or in some other way interrupt my life.
Second, I've been more rude to them, on occassion, than I've been to complete strangers. For example, the snapping and pointing and waving them away when I am on the phone; the rolling of the eyes when I need to repeat myself. Is this familiar to any of you?
Third, I just don't find myself terribly fun to be with. In our house there have been days when Daddy comes home from work and the house erupts with laughter and I realize: "I don't think any of us have laughed all day until just now." Sad.

These are just some of the supporting evidences for why I am shocked that my children actually like me. I so often parent in a way that protects myself from getting hurt or feeling rejected. I expect them to not reciprocate the love I have for them so I play disinterested so that I won't feel as snubbed. You know, just like walking into the High School Cafeteria, trying to sit at the 'in' table, realizing that they don't want you and walking away saying "Who cares? I didn't really want to sit there anyway." (nice cover up.)

But I heard the other day that the person of greatest influence in a child's life is the same gender parent. The second greatest influence is the opposite gender parent. So, I can influence my wee ones positively by believing and living as if I am someone they like, or I can influence them negatively by living as if maybe they really don't like me. Can you imagine the pattern of rejection I could set up in my dear daughters and sons if they pour their interest and affection on me and I respond coldly as if to say "oh you don't really mean that."?

Lord, I love my children dearly. Please strip me of the self-centered attitude that worries that "maybe they don't like me", and help me to be more focused on loving them and showing them what healthy, safe, trusting relationships look like. The mother-child relationship is no place for me to be shy and intimidated. They like me. They really like me. (maybe I don't get why, but they do). Lord let me live so that they know I REALLY like them back.

Monday, February 5, 2007


Okay, so apparently mothers aren't supposed to brag on their children. It is supposedly only in the realm of grandmas and omas to do that. But since neither of my moms have blogs, it is up to me to tell you something truly outstanding about my children.

Last night they both ate 2 pieces of my homemade lasagna.
Now before you cry "foul" and say that does not make them outstanding, let me clarify: I make a mean lasagna. This was a truly divine dish. We are talking "serve it at a posh restaurant on an oversized plate with a garnish of watercress coulis and a side of exotic mushoom saute" divine lasagna. But you might not think so having just heard the ingredients before you took a bit. In fact, I dare say some of you grown ups out there may not even be so brave as to take a bite knowing only the ingredients. But here is the list of delicacies in my divine lasagna....

Whole wheat noodles, spinach, roasted eggplant and zucchini, and (drum roll please) tofu.
And yes, my children are all 8 and under. And yes they really did all have 2 pieces. And yes we really will fight over who gets to enjoy the last 3 leftover pieces (easy answer: me, me and me). I mean, seriously, who eats like this? How many kids do you know who will even eat green beans, let alone the things I feed my kids? (Don't even get me started on how my children feel about brussels sprouts). It just really struck me last night how blessed I am by these little foodies.

If any of you feel inspired and would like to try out my divine lasagna on your own children, email me and I'll be happy to share my original recipe with you. If nothing else it is fun to astound the produce manager at the grocery store with your cart (it really helps to have my 4 year old daughter in tow saying "Are you buying eggplant?! I LOVE eggplant!!" It turns heads everytime.)

And by the way, for her birthday lunch today my 7 year old daughter requested French Onion Soup and marinated cream cheese on baguette. cool is that?!