Tuesday, March 31, 2009

On Bein' a Mama

i mentioned in my last post about G having the flu while we were gone.
One day, he just refused all foods. i thought he was maybe acting funny because we were in a new place and daddy was gone - but that night, he started throwing up.
The only thing he would take in was my milk... not even a sip of water.
Over the next couple of days, my milk supply - which isn't huge at this point, over a year in - built quickly back up as he was up several times in the night to nurse & it was the only thing he would take in in the day.
i noticed how quickly his little face seemed to slim down the little rolls on his legs seemed a little smaller to me. He's a really chunky guy (he was over 27lbs when i weighed him at 1year) so, he's not skinny by any stretch of the imagination - but my mama heart went out to my little one who, usually so content, writhed in my arms - inconsolable - at night.
And so, as most mama's know - my heart worked on my body - and emotions ganged up with hormones, worry with need - and soon all i had to do was look at my darling boy & my milk would let down with a bang, soaking my shirt. In my desire and need to *do something* - my body *did* what it could - whether it was needed or not.
It's a funny story - but it's where my sister has been living for the past month - & it's not funny anymore.
Sadie, Jessie's sweet 27lb 3 year old darling - has been drinking over 6 litres of water a day - and peeing out the equivalent. It has been decided by the medical professionals, that this is not an emergency & they'll see her in a week.
It's amazing how i feel like i can relate to Jessie's craving for action - her need to "do" for her little girl... Her heart working on her body - emotions ganging up with hormones, worry with need - she's getting raging headaches, and her body hurts.
i remember when i had my first, someone commenting to me that motherhood was like, 'letting your heart walk around outside your body' - & it's true.
Your mama bear instinct is so strong - you would fight to the death - or lay down & die for your little ones - & yet so much is out of your hands.
God - turn our eyes to You -
Our little ones are in your capable hands -
Give us the peace that passes all understanding
'Cause You are trustworthy.

"As a mother, my job is to take care of what is possible and trust God with the impossible."
-Ruth Bell Graham

Monday, March 30, 2009

Creature Comforts

While at my inlaws, Gagey got a nasty stomach flu. When Neil took the bigger 4 skiing for a day, i stayed home with Molls & Gage. Mollen ended up having quite the morning. It's her birthday soon, so my mother-in-law took her shopping & bought her a few goodies. When they came home, i had decided to give Gagey a little bath just to freshen him up. My mil suggested that i put the 2 littles in her gorgeous soaker tub and so we ran them a little bubble bath.
Mollen hummed happily, "Toys please!"
My mil dumped a little basket of toys in the tub, & then asked me, "Would you like a drink or something?"
Molls replied without a pause, "Yes, latte please!"
With a smirk on her face, my mil went to get us some tea.
Mollen reclined back into the bubbles, closed her eyes, crossed her little legs & said, "This is the life."

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Same Planet, Different Universe

i've been at my inlaws this week. They're awesome. i love getting the chance to see them loving my little ones - & yet - it's so funny how they're not *mine*... How suddenly i'll say something & i'll realise that the words i spoke are so foreign that it's almost like another language. i know that it's the same for them...
Family is such a precious thing that i would never want to take for granted. It's a relationship that is worth all the effort that we pour in.
They have been so gracious with me - choosing to try to understand - when instead they could have fought to be understood.
Neil has taught me many valuable lessons, like pretending you didn't hear something that you could have fought over - but instead, choosing to sift. Makes me wonder about all those times he says to me, 'what? oh, i didn't hear you...' hehe...
My own sisters seem to often know what i'm about to say before i say it. i've needed them both at different times to help me put thoughts into words... they see the good in me when i'm sure that it's not there & they make allowances for me because they know where i'm weak.
i was talking with my mother in law about marriage - how it can be such a beautiful, beautiful thing - the give and the take - the support given and needed - the love and tenderness required to keep it alive.
Extended family almost has the same needs. Sometimes it's giving support without your opinion, love without expectations, or tenderness without frustration.
's what i'm thinking about on this quiet Saturday afternoon.

Friday, March 27, 2009

What am i made of?

i wonder that too often.
i know - it has been the subject of many of my blog entries.
My sister Stephanie & i were talking about it one day - how you don't... can't... really know - until the defining moment that makes clear the kind of a person that you have allowed yourself to become.
i feel like this life is my study hour - God has given me some incredible resources - besides the bible, my friends, my family... He's given me the Holy Spirit.
When i hear stories of martyrs - the persecuted church, stories of love so overwhelming and humbling... People making difficult - impossible - choices in the name of Love. i pray that should God have me walk through the furnace, that the Holy Spirit will give me what i lack so that the question isn't: what am i made of? But is instead: What can God make of me?
i get so wrapped up in my failings that i forget that they don't negate God's truth. The reality of God's love and sacrifice doesn't depend on me getting all the answers right.
i find myself longing to be in a place of complete surrender. Where my will becomes His will. Where my instincts are His. Where His Truth lives in me.
What can you make me, God?

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Our Father - by Mollen

Our Father, who aren't in heaven
low be my name.
The kingdom come,
my will be done - on earf as it is in heaven.
Give us dis day, our daily bread.
As we forgive those who trespass against us and forgive us this trespasses and trespass against us.
Lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom forever and ever.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Still no sleep

"Neil?" i whispered.
Neil was packing & i was nursing Gagey to sleep after a quick lunch on Sunday afternoon. The roads were horrible & Neil had to be in Edmonton by Sunday night, so he was leaving a little early.
"What?" he asked without looking up.
"Lookit his fat little tummy."
Everytime i grazed the side of his tummy with my fingernail Gage would giggle even though he was almost asleep.

Neil laughed at me - & then stopped what he was doing to stare at us.

"Isn't he worth not getting any sleep for?"
"Yes. He is worth not getting any sleep for."
Gage was done, but in denial that it was nap time. He squealed and stumbled across the bed to Neil.
Into those familiar arms.
He layed his downy head on his father's shoulder, knowing that even though he had valiantly won the battle, the war against his afternoon nap was going to be a sure loss.
Sweet boy.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Good from Evil?

i had a comment on my blog that i wanted to respond to - it was in reference to my post on human embryonic stem cell research:
"This is one I've always struggled with - not that I think abortion should ever be an option - don't get me wrong. But if that child has been aborted why not create something good from evil? Why not give another child a chance to live again from the child who never had that chance themselves? I don't agree with them doing abortion ever - and certainly not just for the right to have some "material" to work with!- but can we not make something good come out of the little lives who never had a chance? I know - I opened a can of worms :-0 But it is something I wonder. "

First off - i don't worry too much about cans of worms. Sometimes i think we shy away from topics that we could all benefit from thinking through on a little deeper level.
i'll give my humble .02c on this one - & anyone else who reads my blog & feels like it can chime in too.
i referenced an article in that post (that i think is *so* worth the read...) but it talked about the Nuremburg Code, a set of internationally-adopted directives for human experimentation. It held this quote from the Code:
The Code states: “The voluntary consent of the human subject is absolutely essential. This means that the person involved should have legal capacity to give consent; should be so situated as to be able to exercise free power of choice, without the intervention of any element of force, fraud, deceit, duress, over-reaching, or other ulterior form of constraint or coercion; and should have sufficient knowledge and comprehension of the elements of the subject matter involved as to enable him to make an understanding and enlightened decision.” It also requires that human experimentation be aimed at yielding fruitful results for the good of society, unprocurable by other methods or means of study. Further, it states that experiments should be conducted as to avoid all unnecessary physical and mental suffering and injury. No experiment should be conducted where there is an a priori reason to believe that death or disabling injury will occur.
If you believe, (like i do - and like most people did, until it became extremely inconvenient) that life begins at conception, then we must believe that these embryos are teeny, tiny human beings... and the Nuremburg Code applies to them too. They're not dead - just frozen, helpless; discarded by their parents and by the doctors who created them. These little ones have all the genetic material of their parents - and given a chance - and a womb - many of them would grow and live full lives. These little embryos are killed to extract the stem cells needed for research. i firmly believe that we have a HUGE problem world wide with the excess in fertility clinics. We are creating life, for sure destruction and it needs to stop. The problem of killing isn't redeemed by using the remains of the murdered to heal ourselves. Here is a link to another article that says, 'How 500,000 frozen embryos are forcing us to rethink life, choice, and reproductive freedom" - It's not from a Christian perspective - or even from a prolife one, but it's food for thought, and it sheds some light on the growing problems that are caused by thoughtless action in fertility clinics.
Now, i don't want to take for granted that the comment was about human embryos who obviously *aren't* aborted - just not given any chance at life... She wrote about children who have already been aborted. This happens too - in fact a lot of our vaccines come from aborted fetal cell lines, so really, we're all faced with this exact dilemma every time we bring our child in for vaccination. So, is it ethical to benefit from something that we find morally reprehensible? The Vatican issued a statement that we should push by all means to get acceptable alternatives to aborted fetal cell line vaccines, but that until that happens, it is a matter of conscience for people to work out in their own hearts if they need to vaccinate or not. -(No, i'm not Catholic, but i think it's interesting that the Vatican made a statement on this issue.)
For different families, it's gonna look different. For Neil & i - it has meant that we've made the choice not to vaccinate our little guys. -(If you're interested in finding out which vaccines use aborted fetal cell lines, http://www.cogforlife.org/ has a webpage that has the relevant information sorted by country).
For me, i feel like any time we condone or profit from this culture of death, we slip a little farther into a moral & ethical slough & i feel like it's time we started looking for a little higher ground.

1 I waited patiently for the LORD;
he turned to me and heard my cry.
2 He lifted me out of the slimy pit,

out of the mud and mire;
he set my feet on a rock
and gave me a firm place to stand.
3 He put a new song in my mouth,

a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear
and put their trust in the LORD.
Psalm 40:1-3

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Et tu, Brute?

Sweet little monkey girl - i thought we had a deal... You'd keep your chicklet teeth forever & in return i'd let it slide that you still sneak into bed with dad & i almost every night.
Looks like you didn't keep your end of the bargain.
Baby girl, - i find myself fighting the urge to try to keep you tiny.
Another little milestone passed - another rite of passage in your journey through childhood. You are loved and cherished, Molls.
Love, mom.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Why Are We Doing That?

Because We Can.
That seems to be the pervading argument lately.
Science should never be limited, or stopped. Not, is it right, good, fair - but, will it bring us profit, answers, health... Progress at all costs. The end justifies the means.
It's just not true.
There are times when we need to pause and let ethics catch up to us.
i read this article today:
Sixty years ago, 23 German doctors and medical staff sat in the dock in the city of Nuremberg, charged with crimes against humanity. In his eloquent opening address, the American prosecutor, Telford Taylor, said that the world must not forget their atrocities:
"These defendants did not kill in hot blood, nor for personal enrichment... Most of them are trained physicians and some of them are distinguished scientists. Yet these defendants, all of whom were fully able to comprehend the nature of their acts, and most of whom were exceptionally qualified to form a moral and professional judgment in this respect, are responsible for wholesale murder and unspeakably cruel tortures. It is our deep obligation to all peoples of the world to show why and how these things happened... The perverse thoughts and distorted concepts which brought about these savageries are not dead. They cannot be killed by force of arms. They must not become a spreading cancer in the breast of humanity."

(The full article can be found by clicking on the above link...)
i think we're there again.
i've heard the argument, "God gave us the ability to think, problem solve and to achieve these scientific goals."
Was that His goal? That we would bow down to the god of science and medicine. Giving all our worldly goods, rejecting the Creator for the created, sacrificing our children?... Sounds familiar... molech, baal, chemosh...
i've heard the argument, "Those embryos are being used to save lives."
How far can we carry that logic? How can we begin to measure one life against another? How can we argue that because one is weak and vulnerable, it's expendable?
i've heard the argument, "Those embryos would have just been flushed anyway."
Should we not then, take a look at our fertility clinics, and the ethics of fertility treatments before we strive to make a profit from the loss of a life?
i know - this post sounds a bit harsh... i don't want to be harsh - but the thought of my children asking me, "Why didn't your generation stand up and say anything?" haunts me.
When i think of the people who profited from slavery, from the holocaust, from the oppression and manipulation of others - i see my generation... sitting by and applauding a president who decided we're not going to hold back on human embryonic stem cell research anymore.
North America has taken a stand on the value of human life.
It's just not one that i agree with.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

a new journal

i've kept a journal since i was in grade 3.
By the time i got married, i had stacks of them. Some were crappy coil bound notebooks, some were pretty hard cover ones with the silky bookmarks...
i felt like at that time in my life, i was starting fresh, so i burned them all & only kept the one i was working on at that moment - it was orange with 2 huge butterflies on the cover & it covered my pregnancy with Cai & my wedding... plus it wasn't done yet... so it was spared.
Since then, i've finished about 5 more - the most recent one being my cute little orange '70's Design Anika Leppkes journal.
i've had it's replacement for almost a year already. Neil & co. bought me one for mothers day last year & it's been sitting, waiting for me to be finished with it's predecessor so it's white empty pages could be filled too.
Today, i cracked the cover - trying to get over my trust issues with this unfamiliar book... & flipped through the pages... right to the end... & wondered what words would fill those lines.
My old journal has broken binding, lists of the dates Neil was gone for a few months when i felt like keeping track, a countdown chart with each day crossed off leading up to Gage's birth, lists of possible baby names - circled or crossed out, entries that are sad, hopeful, grateful, happy, funny, blue, or mooshy & lovey dovey...
It's my favourite journal to date...
It's kind of sad to close it - & put it on the shelf...
& trust that my Father knows where He's leading as i begin this next journal...
It's pink.
With the word 'inspire' inscribed on the front.
i doodled our names all over the inside of the front cover...
& started some lists in the back...
i read where my family had each written something to me when they gave it to me last year... Charter's made me smile, "to the best mom i ever had, love Charter"
& then i wrote the date at the top of the first page.
& started.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Come, ye sinners, poor and needy

Come, ye sinners, poor and needy,
Weak and wounded, sick and sore;
Jesus ready stands to save you,
Full of pity, love, and pow'r

i will arise and go to Jesus,
He will embrace me in His arms;
In the arms of my dear Saviour,
o, there are ten thousand charms.

Come, ye thirsty, come and welcome,
God's free bounty glorify;
True belief and true repentance
Every grace that brings you nigh.

Let not conscience make you linger,
Nor of fitness fondly dream;
All the fitness He requireth
Is to feel your need of Him.

Come ye weary, heavy laden,
Lost and ruined by the fall;
If you tarry till you're better,
You will never come at all.

(text: joseph hart, refrain source unknown)

i've been singing this song all week... what an invitation.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

My husband is never ridiculous

i'm the one who trips & falls, tries a new hair-do & ends up looking like Dog the Bounty Hunter, laughs & juice comes out my nose, wears the wrinkly shirt, sits in a spill... (the list goes on & on...) He's always so.... so.... perfect.
*Note: After i typed that, the doorbell rang & it was the pastor's wife, picking up my 2 big girls to babysit at the church. i put on my best smile - to hopefully distract from my hair that was too tangly to brush this morning, so it's in a heap & my pj bottoms that are a little big & always slipping down...
Neil, meanwhile, looks so handsome in his work clothes this morning. He's got it all together in his tidy little office.

So, i'll tell you the story of when Neil was ridiculous.

i was about 9 months pregnant with Gage. i was tired & achy & ready to just sit like a lump in bed eating snacks till babe came. i asked Neil to buy me a labour ball so i could use it to labour at home if i needed to a bit before going to the hospital. Neil being the awesome husband that he is, did pick one up for me & one evening, while i was sitting in my crumbs in our bed, he blew it up. Funny thing was, it came with these straps... 'what are those for?' we wondered.

Neil had already rowed & done his push-ups, but he proceeded to attach the straps in a way that probably looked right to him - & showed me, "See, honey? You just do it like this. This is a great work out!! You should try this & get some exercise!!" i just watched from the bed... unable... unwilling to move.

His arms were pushing, he held the ball down with one foot & gave a mighty pull with his arms... grunting, straining...

...the ball suddenly bounced up and smashed him in the face.

*now... for the rest of the story, i'm just guessing what happened 'cause i was hiding under the blankets wondering how hard you can laugh before you put yourself into labour...

He quietly took off the straps,

Went across the room... found his glasses - checking to see if they were bent or damaged in their flight,

Turned off the light & climbed into bed.

My side of the bed was shaking in the silent darkness.

i love that i got to see that little chink in his armour. A teeny moment of weakness - a small hint of 'ridiculous' - from my tower of strength. i love that - as close to perfection that he is - he still isn't there. i love that his side of the bed started shaking too & we laughed so long that we probably got a better work out than that old ball could give anyway.

So, no, my husband is never ridiculous - but one day, he was.

& for that i'm grateful.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Could It Be...

Could it be that God has something greater for us than our happiness?
How many times have we heard that phrase, "As long as s/he's happy..."
Is that the greatest goal that we can have for our children? For ourselves?
Or - could it be... that there is something more valuable out there.
What if God allows those refining moments - those moments that seem devoid of happiness to build into us -


Holy - set apart for His use.
God doesn't lack Goodness because we can't see that He's giving us something far more precious than our own comfort...
God hears our cries. He has compassion. He knows it might hurt to be stretched - & brought to a place of surrender & yet... in His Goodness - He still allows it.
Oh - i believe that He is Good. What comes from His hand *may not* make us happy and comfortable...
What comes from His hand might bring happiness or sorrow, comfort or aching discomfort -

But i trust in Your unfailing Love - My heart rejoices in Your salvation -
i will sing unto the Lord -
for He has been Good to me.
psalm 13

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Sunday mornings - how we do it

Sundays have really changed over the past year. That change has come about mostly because i've been doing a lot of music at our church... On the days where i'm helping out with music, i need to be at the church at 8:30.
Sundays *feel* different at our house. i get up, shower - my sweet husband gets up, puts on some music and makes the coffee. Sundays feel mellow. Cai showers & i get Gagey all changed, fed & happy... Neil & i have our coffee by the fire & the rest of the little ones roam around in various stages of readiness.
As 8:20 rolls around, Neil drives me & Cai & Gagey to the church (so that we only have 1 vehicle there). Sloanie holds down the fort for the 5 minutes it takes him to drop us off - in nicer weather, we've walked... but man, it's been awhile.
My little wonder woman has usually packed snacks & a sippy cup for her little sweetheart & her & Gage seem to enjoy the musical morning getting ready for the service.
Our service starts at 11 - so Neil & co. arrive a few minutes before that so that he can snag Gagey & the other littles can get to Sunday School. After the music part, Neil & i sometimes take turns with little man. He's feeling frisky these days, so he's not the greatest for sitting in church - but there's a family room where he can roam - or like he did today, he can rule the foyer, makin' eyes at all the ladies.
The part that stuck out for me from the sermon today?
Well, it's funny - 'cause it was more of a side thought than the focus of his sermon (Jesus our Redeemer), but he said (talking about Ruth) that a good wife can be like a crown & a bad wife can be like a cancer... the girl next to me looked at me & we raised our eyebrows. 'i think i'm like a cancer,' she whispered... half joking... 'no', i said... 'we're just really, really heavy crowns'.
We visited a bit - & our conversation fed me & reminded me that church is the body of believers. (Thank you, C).
After the service ends - we round up the troops & slowly find our way out to the van & home to leftovers or some other such lazy lunch... (today it was ham buns & leftover lasagne).
It's not always about the sermon, the music, the ambiance... It's about fellowship, edification, correction, and sharpening. It's about Jesus - learning more about Him - worshipping corporately - & showing my children that even in this far less than perfect congregation, God will show up & help us to grow.
i've heard this sentiment from other Christians - & i've found it to be painfully true in my own life: i love Jesus, but Church is hard...
Churches have bad reputations that they have earned. A lot of churches have sacrificed Truth for numbers, Jesus for a fallen man, ministry for money. Neil & i have struggled over the years wondering 'what's it all for?'
But for now - we've found our little spot. We feel like we have something to offer and that we are being fed.
So, Sunday mornings - that's how we do it. :)

Friday, March 13, 2009

Zion's song - for Gagey

*during my pregnancy with Gage, i struggled with anxiety. This is the song i sang when i dedicated him to God before we knew his name.

Zion's Song

So extravagant, so luxurious - this love - this love
how can i express, all my gratitude for this gift, this gift

Darling growing and moving and stretching, oh!
Will you really be mine?
Didja really push away rainclouds and stormclouds, oh!
You brought the sunshine.

So extravagant, so luxurious - this love - this love
how can i express, all my gratitude for this gift, this gift

Though You owe me nothing, Your love is abounding, oh!
i will always be yours.
You give and You take - but you've given me more than i
could ever deserve

and i know that they're in Your hand -
and i know i am safe in Your hand
and i know that they're in Your hand -
and i know i am safe in Your hand

So extravagant, so luxurious - this love - this love
how can i express, all my gratitude for this gift, this gift

they're Yours, they're Yours, Father -
they're Yours, they're Yours, Father -

Thursday, March 12, 2009

mama's song - for Cairo

i held her all day long
she smiled at me
i sang her a song
she looked inside my soul
and saw i'd been reborn

For all that You created me - for all that You created me
For all that You created me - i'm yours.

In me, i let her grow
protected her from this cruel world
so many in danger there
Lord, listen to my prayer

For all that You created me - for all that You created me
For all that You created me - i'm yours.

To bring You glory, Lord
my highest calling,
my greatest goal
To serve you here and now -
in this home - i sing my song

For all that you created me - for all that You created me
For all that You created me - i'm yours.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


You'd think with all the talk in the news lately about Obama's lifting of restrictions on human embryonic stem cell research, that my post might be on that topic...
Or Euthanasia - considering that was the subject of a poll in a major newspaper this week.
Ethics in fertility treatments...
Words that we've kind of gotten used to being bandied about in political debate.
i'm so tired.
i read this week on one of those debate forums (i tried to find a direct quote, but it looks like it's been deleted) that the only way that we are going to see a decline in abortion is if we make birth control accessible to all - and make sex education a priority in all public schools.
i just felt tired.
i wasn't even participating in the debate. i just happened to stop in because i think there's value in understanding other's opinions & the topic of abortion is something i am passionate about.
Is that where we're at then? i guess from where i stand, birth control is pretty standard - & sex education is starting younger and younger... & yet there has been no real decline in the number of abortions. i agree with them that there is only one solution.... but i disagree with them about what that solution is.
It feels silly to even type this...
What if we as a Nation...
As a Continent...
Experienced a change of heart.
What if - we could admit that what we've been doing is shameful and wrong...

To me, this is the only solution to the problem of abortion. Sounds simplistic... and unrealistic - doesn't it?
But, isn't that what it's *always* about? Our hearts?
What if children were no longer regarded as a plague. A dreaded disease that required the intervention of medical professionals to stop the spread.

(If you've been there -
There is love, compassion & forgiveness -
It's not about what we've done - it's about what He can do in us. )

A tangible way to start...
Here are my humble thoughts.
Start with acknowledging those little lives. There seems to be a silence around miscarriage and stillbirth. i think this is because we don't know how to reconcile the grief of loss with the acceptableness of abortion.
Allowing for grief opens the door for change. Our hearts can't help but be softened when met with the reality of loss.
The Walk to Remember is a tangible way to reach confused, hurting families - and to reinforce the truth that their little one matters. We should include the families of the little ones who have been lost to abortion.
Next, we need to change our perception of motherhood. Here is a quote from my sister Stephanie that she probably doesn't even remember making, but that resonated with me years ago:
Motherhood is my extremely hard, but inestimably valuable contribution to our world & to the kingdom of Heaven.
Motherhood is a lifetime commitment. My family - Neil & my littles - are my first priority. My loaves and fishes offered daily in my role as wife and mama will be multiplied for the Kingdom of God.
Finally - & most importantly -
Christians need to keep pointing to Jesus. He is the one who can change hearts and minds. No political debate, or personal tragedy will change the world - but a change of heart - from God, the source of all Truth -

Monday, March 9, 2009

Small Enough

Nichole Nordeman

Small Enough
oh, great God, be small enough to hear me now
there were times when i was crying
from the dark of daniel's den
and i have asked you once or twice
if you would part the sea again
but tonight i do not need a fiery pillar in the sky
just wanna know you're gonna hold me if i start to cry
oh, great God, be small enough to hear me now

oh, great God, be close enough to feel you now
there have been moments when i could not
face goliath on my own
and how could i forget we've marched around our share of jerichos
but i will not be setting out a fleece for you tonight
just wanna know that everything will be alright
oh great God, be close enough to feel you now

all praise and all honor be
to the God of ancient mysteries
whose every sign and wonder turn the pages of our history
but tonight my heart is heavy
and i cannot keep from whispering this prayer
"are you there?"

and i know you could leave writing on the wall
thats just for me
or send wisdom while i'm sleeping,
like in soloman's sweet dreams
but i don't need the strength of samson
or a chariot in the end
just want to know that you still know how many hairs
are on my head
oh great God, be small enough to hear me now

My sister sent me this song a few months ago - love the words...

What an amazing thing - that we can serve a God - who will meet with us - & have a relationship with us on a personal level. What a beautiful thing - to rest in the knowledge of His goodness & to daily be drawn closer to Him.
Romans 12:2 (New International Version)
2Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Poetry and a Man to waste it on...

So, i was checking out my friend's blog & it's their 5th anniversary of wedded bliss.
Later on, i was looking for something in my dresser drawer, & i came upon a poem i had written for Neil in our first year of marriage.

it's as subtle as the passing of the day
& as compelling as the cry of a baby
It's as strong as the pull of the outgoing tide
& as pure as the sweetest mountain spring
oh, my heart...
my soul...
my love...
Happiness in being together-
i am - myself - with you,

(each line is separated with a heart... really... i should frame this...)
i totally remember writing it... Keeping our home while he was off working one of his grueling 12 hour shifts shoveling the floor as a labourer in a mill at 19 to support his wife & child. & i remember presenting it to him - with a little laugh - as he looked at me blankly.
"um... thank you?"
i'm laughing now as i type this - remembering. His lack of enthusiasm (which was probably more confusion than anything) didn't hurt my feelings 'cause i've always known who we are. He's the no frills, nose to the grindstone, feet planted firmly on the ground manly-man (think: Shrek). i'm the scatter-brained, artsy, buck the system girly-girl (think: Donkey). i presented it to him with a flourish because it was funny watching him read those words and squirm - not knowing how, quite, to respond.
He did the same thing the first time i wrote him a love song... i wanted to tell him 'thank you' for the way he had cared for me when i had lost our little son & i didn't know how else to express myself. He listened & said, 'it's nice' - but i probably got more out of writing it than he did listening. The way he cared for me when we lost our baby? He picked me up after i had a second hospital stay from some complications - & bought our first VCR on the way home so we could watch mindless crap. He also gave me a No Doubt CD :) to help pull my mind out of the deep places it never wanted to leave & brought home a bucket of KFC - so we could sit on the floor watching movies & not worry about cooking or cleaning up. He sat with me... in silence... when there were no words.
When we dated, i would show up at his rugby games in my hippy dresses & he showed up at my college jury with cowboy boots. Our differences make our marriage what it is... a give & take - a balance whose delicacy belies it's strength.
i will always be the one with the bull-horn declaring my undying love.
He will always be the one quietly acting out his love.
i use to wonder if he would have been happier with a girl more *like* him. Someone who didn't get so wrapped up in dreaming that she forgot supper - someone who golfed, knew how to iron shirts & had it all together - but then i remember my secret power:
Nobody else could love that man as much as i do.
& i am satisfied.

Friday, March 6, 2009

The Compliment Game

It started when i had a few less children... i needed a way to teach my children to speak lovingly to each other. To see each others strengths & to hear words of encouragement from their siblings (& parents).
We would sit at the table & one person would start:
Cairo: Sloan, i like the way you shared your juice today.
(Now it would be Sloanie's turn)
Sloan: Thank you Cai. Peyton, it was nice when you didn't complain when the baby wrecked your picture...
You get the idea...
Anyway - it had been awhile since we played the Compliment Game, but we had written it on some of our strips of paper for Lent.
That morning dawned a little grumpy & compliments were hard to find in the dim light.
There were bed-heads, hoodies pulled up & maybe even a thumb in a mouth as i announced the Game.
"i can only think of bad things."
Finally, i went around & started us off... Speaking lovingly about each of my children - strengths that i've seen budding - acts of selflessness & grace. i thought maybe i had managed so soften them up as i opened up the floor.
Mollen went next, "i like going to Gammie & Gampie's house for CHRISTMAS!!"
Ok.. not quite what i was looking for...
Sloanie, "i'd like it if Charter was less of a whiner!"
K, now we're really missing the mark...
Peyton, "Gagey, thank you for wearing that blue shirt so we can match!!"
(*editor's note - Peyton is wearing a bright pink tank top*)
We all look at her...
"What?! i'm going to change!"
i give up.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

stuck in this moment

o - he was so tired. i had given him a bath - put a fresh diaper on him. He was bare-chested with his car jammie pants & his little amber necklace.
He nursed & gazed at me with his blue eyes
- fading -
& then clung to my neck with his downy head resting on my shoulder as i carried him to his little nest.
i willed my arms to lay him down -
but instead they held fast to the wee sleepy burden.
Oh, God.
i whisper in his ear - his breathing is soft & rhythmic as he balances precariously between sleep and wake.
Thank you - thank you - thank you - thank you.
i have no other words.
Gage leans his dreamy head back to glance up at my face - wondering why his light is dimmed, his fan is on, his tummy has been filled - but we seem to be stuck in this moment.
The tears sting my eyes as i look at this little one who might never have been.
Oh, God.
The gratitude wells up in my chest & i can't keep it contained.
i hear whispered giggles outside his room & i know if i don't lay him down - i could waste the sprinkling sand that the sandman has left - & that his little eyes - drooping now - will perk and waken as he hears other little voices.
i lay him down.
Soft blankets.
He sighs.
i sigh.
Sleep, baby.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

treading gently - honesty

i can't count the number of times in my life that my mouth wanted to blab...
my heart made me pause...

& it's an even embarrassing larger number of times that i missed that gag order from my heart & barged ahead & never realized it till it was too late.

i don't want to be silent because fear holds me back - truth is worth so much more than my discomfort. & yet - there have been so many instances - more than usual lately, it seems - where i've held back - & i think (hope, pray)... it's been the right thing to do.

Getting access to another person's heart is a very precious thing. i don't take it for granted that someone would open up to me. i know how much it takes for me to be able to open up to others - & i count it the richest gift when others have let me in.

The last thing i want to do - is jump in like a bull in a china shop - upsetting the delicate balance & making myself at home.

So, God, i'm sitting - waiting... willing myself to tread gently.

Give me Your words to speak truth in a corrupt world.

Give me Your wisdom to cut to the heart of the matter & expose the truth that needs to be brought to light.

Give me Your Love - to wash it all in - to bathe any wounds that i would make - & to cover my ignorance & pride.

Give me discernment and the fruit of the Spirit - so that my own opinions become Yours.

Bring me correction & discipline constantly. Help me walk in your Truth.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Will You Marry Me?

oh, aren't those beautiful words?
Neil's cousin & her husband were over this week & we asked, "So, how did he propose this year?"
They've been married for almost 7 years - so seems a funny question... but when he first proposed i guess he didn't do a very good job & she thought he was breaking up with her when he was really asking for her to be his wife. So, each year, on the anniversary of their engagement, he gets her ring polished & thinks of some new, creative way to propose again.
i love it.
i love the annual question - & the reply affirmed again and again.
There's that old joke about the man who never said i love you to his wife & when she bugged him about it, he said, 'i told you i loved you on the day we got married & if i change my mind, i'll let you know.'
i don't want to just trust that it's understood.
My little ones need to see that love thriving & winding & weaving it's strong roots around our family - helping it grow & making it strong.
*i* need to hear that he loves me & wants me - still - even now - when i do something annoying, or silly, or stupid.
He needs to hear my reply again too.
Yes. i will marry you. i will take you in the good, & the bad. i will visit with you in the tubby & drink my coffee with you by the fire. i will be your sounding board. i will have your back.
We will be a team.


Related Posts with Thumbnails