Honor Me

Sometimes God is clear. Other times He is a nagging feeling you don’t want to pay attention to, a bout of indigestion best warded off with sleep and ice water.

Sometimes his nudges feel anticlimactic and a nuisance. Or simply mundane daily life with an emphasis on relationships.

It’s God saying, “I planted you here (or maybe you planted yourself) but sow nonetheless, because I am here too”

It’s God saying, “I don’t really care if this is fun, this is the rainy season”

“Honor me in this.”

honor meI’m uncomfortable, and barely getting out of simple survival mode as I wrap my head around a third unplanned but dearly loved pregnancy, as we enter into the third trimester before I blink.

I’m forced to sow where I’m planted, and I’m down right tired of planning and looking ahead, I just need DAILY bread. (preferably sourdough with salt, Jesus)

“Honor me in this…”

I’m not sure what that looks like truth be told, but whenever I’m not sure I fall back on love. Above all else God is love, so its time to start living out love. Even when I’m tired, even when the new neighbors are annoying, even when I have one hundred viable excuses not to.

It is time.

– J

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I am forgiven

Today wasn’t my best parenting day. I am sleep deprived. Probably chronically so. It’s been 3 years. I’m praying it’s not 3 more.

I had little patience. Very little. They didn’t nap. I snapped a lot. I cried numerous times too. Mostly when they couldn’t see.

I didn’t get to hold Nici as he fell asleep. Bug was crying. I was juggling. I snapped. He said I’m just talking and fell asleep watching me rock her.

I cried some more. Today was a rough day and I didn’t get to say I’m sorry. Or kiss him before his eyes closed.

I wanted to. Desperately. I leaned in close enough to feel his skin on my face and whispered I’m sorry. I love you. I will do better tomorrow. I promise.

And I will.

And now I must forgive myself. Because I am held too, and I am flawed and broken and have bad days. And that’s ok. I get tomorrow to make it up.

I’m just momma and I’m doing my best.

And thank goodness for grace like an avalanche. My weary soul needs it.

– J

Press On

“I press on…forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead” Philippians 3:12-13

I’ve been in a rut. A bitter, angry, borderline depressed rut.

Luckily, while in this crevice I’ve had support and bug and bear kisses to keep me from lying down in it.

I’m physically tired. But I’m also tired of not being happy. I firmly believe I get to choose happiness (or not) regardless of my circumstances and countless irritations pressed in daily.

Happiness is a choice, joy is a choice.

“True joy is not something that can be conjured up or willed. Joy exists apart from our control, we simply choose whether or not to enter in to it…joy is not a momentary pleasure…joy is a fruit of Gods spirit” Sarah Matheny

joy is a gift given freely but we must choose to accept it (Galatians 5:22)

so today, “I press on…forgetting those things (bitterness, irritations, selfishness etc) and I reach forward to this things which are ahead.

And so many good things are ahead.

Life is changing, its been changing and I press on trying my hardest to not let the bad, press onhard, inappropriate define my day.

I am looking forward to, I am entering into Joy, with confident assurance in the goodness of the Lord- faith and hope in what I cant yet see, but already know. (Hebrews 11:1)

-J

Momma’s Wild Child

My Nici Bear has the worst sleep schedule of anyone I know. This includes parents of newborns…and he’s going on 2 years old.

I’ve had many well-meaning people offer me so many well-meaning suggestions.

Co sleep, don’t co sleep, stricter routine, cry it out, don’t cry it out, later bedtime, clothes that smell like us, face-time with daddy, no middle of the night snacks, phase out naps (he’s done that on his own now).

I could continue, I wont.

Yes, all well meaning; also useless because I’ve tried them all. They don’t work for my wild child. My walking contradiction of aggression and puppy dog kisses.

He will change the world, but it will be on his time frame and with a snack in hand.

This morning a friend restored my tired spirit with her simple and profound words, “I pray for you all the time…Nici just has too much to contribute to this world that sleep is not an option for his spirit.”

(I pray everyone has this kind of friend.)

That reminder, that peace, it brings more rest to MY spirit than any sleep theory advice has ever come close to. Raising humans is hard (and it never ends, just ask my mom).

I’m strict on Nici in so many hard and right ways, but for only so long can I soothe his nightly loneliness.

mommas wildchildFor only so long can I comfort every fiber of his tiny being simply by letting him cuddle into me…and then roll like a gorilla all over my bed and body.

I could get mad and irritated, I do get tired.

But at this point, my body is fairly well adjusted to very little sleep, so sleep deprived mommas hang on…even if your child’s sleep doesn’t improve your body will adjust….so try and smile at you 3am gorilla child.

They are on a journey of greatness and sleep just isn’t an option for their spirit. Compassion starts right now, in the middle of the night with them.

Hold their loneliness and let their wild run safely free in the jungle of your bed.

-J

Force Peaceful Moments

It’s raining outside. The tin in our fireplace is echoing. A candle is lit and the wick sends shadow dances across the dark room. My boys are sleeping and I’m drinking hazelnut coffee (my new favorite).

And its 4 am, and I’ve been up since 1:30am with a wide awake 1 year old.

And I’m overcome with peace.

Not because my circumstances lined up perfectly, or even semi-according to my plan, but because I force peaceful moments into my routine.

I know ‘force peaceful moments’ sounds contradictory, but in my crazy life, sometimes a little force is necessary!

I get out of bed in the morning anywhere from 3-5am. Every. Single. Day. (and no I’m not the freaky person who requires little sleep). I’ve just discovered that 3-5am is the only time I cab guarantee a quiet house, and making time to sit quietly with my God at the start of my day is more soul replenishing than an extra hour of fitful sleep.

Yes, I’ve had to make some changes to be able to do this…rather simple ones… go to bed earlier and make sure coffee is on auto start ~ It’s so worth it.

Sometimes we don’t talk much (God and I). Sometimes we do. Sometimes I just sit quietly and watch the candle dance with Him. Sometimes I start daydreaming and have to refocus my attention on God, and then sometimes He gives the perfect little nudges. And other times, they’re more difficult nudges.

That’s the thing about good friends. They are there with you all the time, and will sit quietly and help you process ideas and sift out the good ones from the bad and give you motivation when it all feels too hard and too exhausting.

Mornings are my favorite: the coffee, the candles, the easy communion with my God…

But also the Honeynut Chex, and apple juice spilled, 100th (same) episode of Octonauts, and sleepy slobbery Nici kisses.

Making time for God…it’s the most important thing I can do as a wife and mother.

I can’t give 110% of myself away (especially at 6 am) without first filling my tank.

My husband and I read The 5 Love Languages (which I highly recommend). Afterwards he kindly informed that I am all 5 love languages and have 5 separate tanks, that require 5 different types of fuel….he’s probably right.

Which is why it is so important that I take part in filling the tanks and don’t rely on him (or anyone else) to make me whole.

The only one who has ever filled me up, who sustains me day after day, who overflows my soul is Jesus.

But I have to slow down enough to let Him!

I have to force peaceful moments into my crazy schedule and meet Him face to face.

Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed. – Matthew 1:35

 But he would go away to places where he could be alone for prayer.  – Luke 5:16d

– J