Tuesday, November 18, 2008

A Reflection of Me

I heard my daughter ask my youngest son if he wanted a white cheese stick or a yellow one in this beautiful sweet sing song voice.

"Which one do you want, Sweet Boy?" she asks him about so many things. She gave up her baby place for older sister when she was just two and her first brother was born. Then we had two more boys after that! And yet, I see that God has designed her to be a kind and nurturing girl who truly adores her brothers and takes her job of big sister very seriously!

In fact, when she "graduated" from kindergarten, her teacher compared each child to a person in the Bible. My daughter got Miriam because of the "special way she takes care of her brothers."

"Sweet Boy " is a name I actually use for all of my boys and to hear her use that reminds me again how everything I say is taken in and recorded on my children's hearts. Now when I use a sweet voice and have an abundance of patience, that is a great thing. But when a harsh tone slips out, I cringe knowing that too went into the depths of my children's hearts.

Luckily, I believe God's grace helps to wipe out those impatient times, the little sighs of frustration, and wrong choice of words. With the love that you show your children everyday, the sweet things that they do hear from you , and the fact that they know you love them because they are yours, not because of something they do, that will fill up their hearts with the good stuff and the rest will be forgiven and hopefully forgotten!

How did your children see you today? What was the reflection of your face this morning? Is it something that you want to see right in them? And what is the reflection on our hearts? Are we truly being a reflection of our Jesus?

My friend has a couple mirrors in her hallway and a saying under them that reads, "That we may be a reflection of Him." My prayer is that I may not only reflect our Lord's patience with my children, but his love in all who I come into contact with today. Just like my daughter is a reflection of me, I want to be a reflection of Him so that in all my ways, my Sweet Girl and my Sweet Boys see Jesus!


Saturday, November 1, 2008

"I Miss Beste Far"

...these words were just said from my sweet tender hearted oldest son ...
We just got back from my husband's grandpa's funeral. "Beste Far" (Norwegian for Grandpa)was 94 and had been married to "Beste Mor" (Grandma) for 69 years! She has Parkinson's disease and he was caring for her right up to the very end. That beautiful song, He Was Walking Her Home by Mark Schultz was not only played at his funeral, but lived out in many ways. The other folks at the Home where they lived called them The Love Birds because even though she did not always know him, he stayed by her side. Even when she could not give back, he gave to her. What an act of faithfulness. And what an example, to not only me as a wife, but as a mother.

There are so many times in a mother's life when your children will not only forget to thank you, they won't even know to say thank you because the sacrifice that you are making for them is going unnoticed. But that one day, they will understand what you did for them.

I remember one time I forgot my favorite bookmark in a book that was returned to the library. It had all my favorite smelly stickers on it. Remember those? Well, I am sure I cried myself to sleep that night although I do not remember that. All I remember is coming home for lunch that next day and my mom opening the back door and she had my bookmark sticking out of her shirt! My mom sacrificed one of her mornings to leaf through all the returned books looking for my bookmark. I have never forgotten that moment.

So whether you sacrificed a high paying job to stay home with your children, or just this morning gave up your time to have a quiet cup of coffee and opted for a noisy tea party instead, these sacrifices will be known one day.

Whether these sacrifices are realized today when your children know how comforting it is to come home to mom everyday after school or someday down the road when they look back and realize they are willing to sacrifice for someone they love because of the example you gave. It will all be worth it.

May you be blessed today by knowing the greatest love sacrifice was given to you:

"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whosoever believed in him shall not perish, but have everlasting life." John 3:16

Enjoy this moment given by God to you!


Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Calgon, don't take me away! We're having too much fun!

Hey There!

Haven't been on in a while....
Between moving, school starting, and just the craziness of having four kids 8 and under, it is not that I haven't had the moments,it is that they are coming far too quickly to remember,but hopefully the positive memories will stick and the ones I want my kids to forget will be wiped away by all the love I try to show them.

Apparently, my kids are quite gifted and know when it is time to bathe!
Here's a classic story that I got picture of...

I was upstairs with my oldest son snuggling after quiet time. He had said, "Hey Mom! Is that water I hear?" I didn't think so, but after hearing it for a while, we thought we should go check it out. Well, my four year old, who at last checking was reading on the couch, decided to take his clothes off, and take a bath in the powder room sink! I told him gently, but sternly that he really could have fallen backward and it was not a good idea to do that, but to keep doing it so I could take a picture for dad. :) We were all laughing pretty hard at that one!

Isn't that just like us? Thinking we know what we need, we will take it into our own hands and maybe get part of the job accomplished, but definitely not the whole thing. And all because we didn't get prepared. Whether it is praying, checking with wise counsel or simply giving yourself time to search the Bible for a more definite answer, we just want to jump into the sink instead of a glorious bath overflowing with bubbles.

Jeremiah 29:11 says, "I know the plans I have for you, plans to give you joy and peace."

In what ways are you settling for a bath in the sink? In what areas of your life do you need to give over to God in order to let him bathe you with his joy and peace, comfort and joy?"

Enjoy the MOMents!


Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Example of a Pure Prayer

So my three year old, oops- FOUR year old (He just had his birthday) got his picture in the paper this week. It was right on the first page of our neighbor section. It was him raising his head, eyes closed and praying to Jesus. It was at vacation bible school. The photographer made reference to some of the kids with their heads bowed, and some even playing, but my Sweetie was praying with such complete intensity to His Saviour, eyes closed, but head towards the skies.

What an example to me. In so many situations, I am trying to look good with my "head bowed", doing all the right things to make me feel like I am close to Jesus and make sure others see the service I am giving to Him. And there are even those days where I am just "playing" and doing my own thing, not caring about anybody but myself. I pray I am more like my son, who not only looks to His Creator, but feels His love surround him with all he has to offer His Lord.

"Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith, and in purity." I Timothy 4:12

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Nachos and Macaroni Stains

I went out to meet a girlfriend for nachos tonight. I know, it’s not coffee, I don’t drink coffee, so if I am going to meet a friend it will be for food. Preferably something salty, so here it is…nachos. Not just ordinary kinds either. The kickin’ jack ones. This time, they did not use enough spice for my liking. I wish I had brought my own. How I got my own stash is for another day.

So I am getting dressed before I go and I grab a cute white cotton blouse with these sassy wavy sleeves. No, not puffy sleeves! Now, I did not check my self in the mirror because I knew I liked this t-shirt and no one was home to check me out. My very sweet husband,Michael, had our children at our rental house to unpack some boxes. So I am on my way and I did look in the car mirror at the restaurant to put on a dash of lipstick (Here’s a quick mom tip: Fresh lipstick looks like you care. Mom taught me that. Either her or the Mary Kay gal that I got roped into buying $250 worth of products from one time.).

While I am applying my lipstick I look down and notice not one, not two, but eight stains on my shirt. Apparently the pile I had grabbed the shirt was not the freshly washed pile, but the dirty pile folded to make it look like it was clean laundry on my bed when book club came over that week. And they were not light toothpaste stains, they were macaroni and cheese stains! Yes, I pride myself in healthy meals for my four kids!So I had two choices, run home, change and show up properly dressed, put together, but late. OR go in with my head held high, be on time looking like I have it all together until the stains are noticed.I chose to be on time and I am so glad I did. The lights were dim enough that no one noticed the stains, and I had a wonderful time with my friend!

On the way home, I thought about my shirt and my visit to the restaurant and I realized how our daily life with Jesus can be the same way. So many times we are worried about our outer appearance and spend so much time on what looks good to the world, whether it is certain activities we are putting our kids in, committees we are involved in, and even different church ministries we are serving in. But we are missing our appointment time with Jesus. He is waiting to meet us, just like my friend was. And even for eternity, he is waiting to meet us. And the difference is those stains on my life will not just be not noticed in the dim light, they will be gone in His magnificent light of His grace on the cross. By his death on the cross, he made me clean.

Beautiful and perfect. That is what God will see when I die and go to Heaven. Not because that is what I am, but that is what Jesus is! That is what He will see. Jesus in me. So on to my time with Him…Not only do I not want to be late, I want to enjoy the meal-the feast with Jesus! Only through Him can I be the mom He wants me to be.

Enjoy your MOMents given to you!