Friday, May 24, 2013

I just don't know

As some of you know, Mike and I are in the process of selling our home. It is a process, and has been a long time in the making, but once the decision to sell was made things have progressed very quickly. The first question people ask when they hear we're moving is, naturally, "Where are you moving to?" Our answer often surprises them. Or worries...or frustrates...or confuses...

We do not know.

We have a plan, but there are a lot of factors that may sway or change our course. We're ok with that, and ultimately, we really have no clue where we'll be living when our home closes. To add to the confusion, we are doing a short sell so even though we have an offer on our home, we have to wait for the bank to approve everything and it is a time consuming process and requires a lot of waiting.

The fact is, this is absolutely thrilling for us. We've made a decision without having a solid plan in place and are stepping out in faith in what we feel is obedience to God. Not having a plan is very unusual for us but we feel as though God has spent the last few years stripping us of those things we find our comfort and security in, that are not Him. While this is exciting for us, the kids see it a little bit differently.

Last week, before church began, the kids were asking about when and where we are going to move. I told them, yet again, that we do NOT know, but that God does. They continued to ask questions.

"Will we take our TV?" Yes.
"Will our new house have an upstairs?" Maybe.
"Will we take the fireplace?" No.
"Will we take our beds?" Yes.
"Can my stuffies stay with me?" Of course.
"But the light switches...will they come, too?" No.

So. Many. Questions.
At one point, Brooklyn began to cry and wailed,

"What if our new home doesn't have a baaaaaaathrooooooom?"
It was comical. I tried to suppress a laugh (unsuccessfully) before I went to give her a hug and assure her that Mike and I will make sure that her basic needs are going to be taken care of.
And the words just slipped out,

"Why can't you just trust that we will take care of you?"

Oh man.

Did the Holy Spirit totally just talk to me while I was reprimanding my daughter?


The kids have never moved before so this is a new experience for them, but I honestly reached a point where I thought, "Have we taken such terrible care of you, have we provided so poorly for you, that you can't even trust us to make sure you have a place to go to the bathroom?"

How many times do I do that with God? How many times have I become hung up on these details that are of no consequence? How many times have I questioned His ability to care for me, or to provide for me, or to love me simply because I can't see what He has in store? When things don't go the way I expect, how quickly do I become despairing and begin to wail and moan that He isn't giving me what I think I need?

I've been told that raising children is a refining process that reveals much of your own sin. Over the years I've thought this meant that I would see how selfish I am (it has) or how impatient I am (yep...that, too) or whatever other sin I think I am struggling with. I didn't think it would be revealed how little I trust my Father to take care of me.

In that moment with my daughter, I felt a deep compassion for her and a need to just hold her. I heard myself saying,

"Mom and Dad are going to be there. We'll be with you. We'll take care of you. That will never change."

I could feel God saying the same things to me.

I don't know how our story is going to play out. I don't expect that we will always be comfortable, or warm, or honestly, that we will always have a toilet to pee in. God has never promised us those things. But He does promise to never leave us and that He does work all things for good, for those that love Him and are called according to His purpose. I'd like to think that means having a toilet, but ... you never know. I do know He has it all planned out and I am thankful that even when I'm crying out to Him because I just cannot for the life of me figure out what is going on, He can gently chuckle and put His arms around me and whisper to my heart,

"You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord God is an everlasting rock." Isaiah 26:3,4

So, no. We don't know where we're going to live.
But God does.
And by God's grace, I'm content to rest there.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Today was a wonderful day.

To my shame, I don't often take the time to really sit back and think of all the ways God has shown up in my day. As the sun was setting today though, I realized what an amazing blessing today has been and I just felt the need to share my joy with others.

I will never tire of these blue skies!

1 - The sun was shining and it was warm. This kind of weather is so good for my soul.
2 - Today was our last day of homeschool co-op until the Fall. I really can't explain what a blessing the women of this co-op have been to me. Each Monday of co-op, I come home feeling full and encouraged. While I look forward to having a little down time from having to get out of the house so early each week, I will sorely miss the women whom I have come to cherish so so much.
3 - I left my cell phone in my friend's car yesterday afternoon. She returned it today, but I had almost 24 hours without it and I realized how much I enjoy the quiet. I am thankful for the reminder.
4 - A friend whom I love dearly but don't get to really visit with often enough, had sent me a text asking if we wanted to have a play date while my phone was away. To my great joy, when I finally was able to respond, she was available still and we had a great visit! God spoke through her to get through my hard heart. I treasure her so much!
5 - Mike is at refresher today and was home at 5 p.m. We get to go to bed together tonight and wake up together in the morning. A week of "normal" work shifts is wonderful.
6 - We stopped for dinner and I met an amazing homeschooling mother of six. From the time our conversation first began I knew she knew Jesus and she gave me hope and encouragement that she had no way of knowing I needed.
7 - My sister cleaned my house. It is sparkling and wonderful and I could kiss her (and probably will!)  for taking care of me this way!
8 - I got to read my Bible. I'm still working on making this a habit that I stick with, but God is so gracious and patient with me even just a few verses feed my hungry soul.
9 - I'm still on a high from having spent the weekend with the women from my church. While it wasn't what I expected, it was more than what I hoped for and God affirmed the love I have for our church family.
10 - The blog post from Imago Dei photography of our family session went live today. You need to check it out. Xiomara did a stellar job; we were brought to tears!!

I'm determined to take stock of the little blessings more often. I have a feeling if I were to look, I'd see God a lot more often in my day. I'm so thankful He's always there.

What are some of your blessings today?!