Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Philippians Chapter 4, verses 13 and 14

This devotion just sort of struck a cord with me as I was on vacation.  I usually always pass this verse, it seems like it's everyone's 'favorite', everyone 'memorizes it', but as I read these Two verses together, a light turned on. Not just Phil. 4:13 but 14 too!. And possibly it helped to read this devotion to know how one shares in one's trouble.  It made me realize that you do need other's praying for you and that it is okay for other's to know your struggles. 

"I can do everything through him who gives me strength. Yet it was good of you to share in my troubles." Philippians 4:13-14 (NIV, 1984)

Lysa TerKeurst

I don't understand some things that happen in life. When one of the most vivacious, fun-loving, beautiful, determined-to-tell-the-world-about-Jesus women I knew found out her cancer was back, my heart broke.
Short of a miraculous healing from God, Brenda wouldn't make it through the end of the year.
One afternoon, I sat with Brenda talking and processing her reality. At one point she got very quiet. It was as if she could see things I couldn't. After a few minutes of silent reflection, she leaned over and whispered, "I know in my heart I'm not going to be here much longer. And I need to know my girls will be okay. They need godly women to walk with them, speak into them and guide them into the future God has for them."
With tears streaming down my face, I committed to being one of those women.
A few weeks later, Brenda's feeling was confirmed as she let go of her family's hand and walked into glory.
Paige and Philecia were 19 and 14 years old, the same ages as my oldest and youngest daughters. I had no idea how to do this right. I didn't have a game plan or a degree in grief counseling. My schedule was crazy. My own kids made me question my sanity some days. And I was so hyperaware of all the many ways I'm flawed. But one thing I knew I could do — be a female voice that whispered often into their lives, "I love you."
Uttering three simple words into the deep grief of two brokenhearted little girls didn't seem like much, but God used it in profound ways.
I couldn't take away their pain. But I could bring joy in the midst of it.
I whispered "I love you" at simple, everyday dinners at my house. I wrote "I love you" on the tops of their birthday gifts and Christmas morning surprises. I texted it when I invited them for afternoon coffee and movie dates. Nothing about it was organized or done perfectly. But just the effort seemed to be what mattered most.
And bit by bit, day by day, love is helping us all figure out this hard time together.
I wonder if you have a friend going through a really tough time. Have you wrestled like I did with not knowing what to say? Being afraid of doing or saying the wrong thing? I understand.
But I've learned it's better to risk doing it wrong than to do nothing at all. A simple "I love you" said or written in conjunction with meeting a practical need is a great place to start.
In May, the girls celebrated their first Mother's Day without Brenda. I knew they would need an "I love you" to help ease the ache of this day. So, I invited their family to join mine for dinner that night.
Halfway through the meal, I wished I had thought in advance of some wonderfully profound words to share to honor Brenda. But right as I was lamenting not being better prepared for this moment, Paige pulled out a framed letter they'd written to me. In honor of Brenda, they'd decided to give me a gift they knew she would have loved ... a gold cross necklace.
I was crying so hard I could barely read their letter. But since then, I've read it many times. It sits on my bedside table as a reminder of how powerful love is. In the letter they included one of Brenda's favorite verses, "I can do everything through him who gives me strength," (Philippians4:13). Interestingly enough, the very next verse reads, "Yet it was good of you to share in my troubles" (v.14).
Yes, it is good to share in each other's troubles. And so, with a willing but very imperfect heart, I will keep whispering "I love you" into the lives of Brenda's beautiful girls.
I still don't understand why this happened. And I don't always know the right things to say in response to deep grief. But I do know love is a beautiful thing to bring into the gap of all the unknowns.
Dear Lord, thank You for showing me the power of Your great love. Help me to be a reflection of Your love to the ones You have entrusted to me. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
(Completely copied from Proverbs 31 Ministry, daily devotions from my gmail inbox. Follow this link to find the out where to sign up for daily devotions.) 

Friday, July 25, 2014

Vacation reading

Well, I say vacation but I am not sure it is one. I'm single parenting, have been at three houses in four days (by choice), I won't lie, it has been a little hectic. Now that we are at our final destination for the rest of the week, it has seemed to be a bit more peaceful.  Cheers!

What I can say is this book, "glitter and glue' by Kelly Corrigan is a good, simple read!  A memoir of a girl, heading out to travel around the world, get's stalled in Australia and then finds herself a nanny job. Through her job figures out why her mom has used the term 'glitter and glue'.  It came out this year, 2014 and reminds me of what I use to read when in high school. I'm glad I picked it up from the library before we left!

Happy Reading! 

Sunday, July 13, 2014

This Boy

I love this little man of ours!  He arrived April 2013, He is pure fun! He introduced to us, a few weeks ago how to be a climber, he is starting to telling us what is on his mind, directing us with hand motions.  He is understanding baby sign language and I just love to see him use it.  He also pushes everything with wheels! 

Today he was climbing the slide in our back yard! He would get up to the top and sit down, turn onto his belly, slide down, get up, walk the long way around the swing set and do it all over again.  He was having so.much.fun!  I Love him to pieces.  

I  asked for a smile, here he is! (15 mos)

I made these for him last night.  I love creating garments for my children.
This boy has had more booties made for him then my two girls put together.
Material: Modern Textiles of Fargo ND

He just bumped his head, he was not to excited about that.
He gave it a rub, a  little mumble to let me know it didn't feel good and was on his way. 

I think... I am back...

Yes, I think I am back, wanting to use this space to share my life with others, the ones who are dear to me but far from me.  This little space I can share more of my story then just a picture or two on Facebook.  (BTW, I have decide to take a break from FB, I think I am going to enjoy it.)

It has been two years, two years with a lot of change, two years of thinking about sharing via this space, thinking 'Is it worth sharing?', trying to make since of simple post not long dramatic ones. Trying to make this a journal, a record of my artistic side of life. The sewing, crafting, painting, house projects, and gardening. But also bit about my children, the ministry that I am involved in and the great people I have in my life. 

So, here's to trying again, with no set standards, just write when I can, about my projects and life.