Friday, October 15, 2010

Checking in

Well, it's been 3 or so since I've had the time to blog. I'm at work today, on my lunch break.
I haven't missed Internet land! Honestly, I am on a computer 8+ hours a day...last thing I want to do is get online when I am off work!

Things are going house is a mess and I am still struggling with how to do all that I have to do...but I think the kids are adjusting well.
I fired our babysitter because I can't afford to pay someone to just sit on the couch and do nothing all day. We are getting things in order with Dave, my mom and #1 son all pitching in to organize who watches the kids when.

School? Hmmm. In process...that's all I will say.

I go back and forth with feeling overwhelmed, guilty and OK with what is going on. I wish there was time to hand out with the kids more, I wish there was time to get my house clean.

On a positive marriage has never been better. DH drives me to work each day and most days he comes and has lunch with me. I work about 5 minutes from our house, so that works.
We have a regular date now too...essential.

I am also seeing SO much that God is for me and that he has not left me alone in all of this change. I am holding onto hope that this is all part of His plan for my life and it will make me stronger.
Honestly, I'm not reading anyones blogs these days. It is too hard for me to see all the wonderful things you are getting done with your children each day. It is hard for me to see you express such gratitude at being able to stay home with your families when I cannot do the same. Harsh, but that is my honest feeling.

Folks, I'm tired. I won't lie to you. Still, I am learning so much about compassion, grace and forgiveness. I am learning what is truly important in my daily life, and it's not the things I used to think it was. Not at all. I was (in many ways) living a delusion. It is good to have clarity on some fronts even if the lesson is a hard one!
Well, my lunch break is over...

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Random thoughts

I am finally able to sit down and blog for a few minutes today. We got Internet access back on at home (yippee) and I have a day off. DH happens to be working today and the kiddos are working on chores and things to get ready for #2 son's birthday party today. Ahhh...a moment to write!
Things in my life are so busy. I work 40 plus hours a week now. My job is very high pressure and fast paced. I am an Admin/scheduler for a roof maintenance company here in town. It is hard adjusting to being gone all the time. Sometimes dinner happens late at night, sometimes we have to go to the store before we can eat! Especially since DH got busy with his work around the same time I went to work. That was not supposed to happen. We thought he would pursue surgery on his back and be home with the kids. I can't get him to slow down. After having NO income for so long, he is trying to get us caught up. I'm just praying that he can hold out with his back issue.
We have a babysitter coming in to help with the kids, not my plan...but it seems to be necessary these days.
Life has taken so many twists and turns. There are time I feel guilty, (daily) about no being home all the time. There are times I feel so overwhelmed that I do not know which way to go! Then, there are times that I try and remember to breathe, stop my thoughts and trust that God has the plan for my life. I am following my husbands leading. If he tells me to quit working, it will be time.

For now, homeschooling is minimal. I know that I need to plan for next year, but I am not even sure if I will be teaching, or if DH will be teaching. I've thought about public school, but we really do not want to do that. I will go back to no income before that happens.

Anyway, that is just an update. Please keep me in your prayers. I need to be sane and have the peace that passes understanding!

My thoughts lately and still are with those who do not know God and depend on Him in times of trouble. If I did not have God in my life, what I am doing now would be intolerable. I almost wonder if God is allowing me to go through this current trial to increase my compassion for working moms. I always had the opinion that moms should stay home with their kids and homeschool. I admit that I looked down on moms who worked. I almost had the opinion that they were not as dedicated a mother as I was, when I was at home baking bread and teaching math lessons every day.
Perhaps God is teaching me to have a new perspective?

I am also moved by so many around me who struggle through addictions and pain. I have always been moved by those bound by addictions.

I would love to see a written plan from God on what to do next in my life. I am not thinking that is going to happen anytime soon however. I'm really trying to remember to slow down and take each day as it comes. Things are radically different and I do not know what the next season holds, but I have to be ok where I am today. Con tenement is not easy to hold on to!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Busy busy

So much has gone on lately. I am at the college taking classes for computers. Not sure if it will do much good in the long run. I know that it is very hard to be away from home as much as I am...on everyone.
Things are very tough right now. I wish I could have something better to say, or something better to report...but we are just struggling so much.
These times try our patience, our resolve and even our faith.

At the risk of sounding like a real bummer, I won't say too much more. Hope to some day have time to think and blog about what I am thinking! For now, it is pure survival mode.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Another month in the wilderness

Oh, how I miss blogging. I miss writing. I feel like the words are going to burst out of me at times if I don't get them down on paper or in cyberspace. life has taken a complete 180. I am now in an advanced computer class 12 hours a week at the local college. I also am required to work in a job training program 20 hours a week.
How does this work for a homeschooling mom of 7 small children? If you have a good answer...let me know! Just kidding...God has this all under control,even if I do not!
Strangely enough, it works like it is supposed to work. DH is fighting a really bad back injury and is not able to *work* even though he is too stubborn to stop completely. He is able to be home with the children while I am out in the world. He has taken over the schooling on some scale that we have not yet determined. So we aren't eating the 3 course meals I used to make...we throw together some grilled chicken and veggies last minute and we are good. So, we realize that we are out of milk as I stare at the children's cereal bowls in the morning...oops...they will survive and I can just run down to the local convenience store at any hour of the day or night!
We are trying to figure out how to get everything done without me there doing in. A great challenge for the whole family.
Some have suggested that we cut the school year short this year and not focus on school much. I am OK with that idea...except we missed so much schooling with moving, me suffering 2 miscarriages and a plethora of other issues, crisis and problems that had to be ironed out this last year. Now, much of our "free time" is spent shuttling DH to doctors, neurosurgeons etc.
A big part of me wants #1 son to really be prepared for his future and get that schooling in...of course...there is not much time for me to fixate on that AND I know that I know that I know that God has his future already planned out for him. *WHEW* My brain is full.
It is a strange season spiritually as well. I am convinced that I am testing some of my ideas on unconditional love with the Lord. Not a rebellion...just pushing some boundaries of who I thought I had to be and how that looks. I am sure that came through in my previous posts on grace vs. legalism.

One thing I wanted to share was that even though I am radically different, seeking, searching and working my butt off out of the house and in...God's spirit is still with me. There are times that I wonder and then I will feel his Spirit prompt me to remember in some old song I love or some comment from a loved one.
The most recent was a Metallica song. (I know...we Christians are not *supposed* to listen to HEAVY METAL...sorry...I rarely do what I am *supposed* to do.) Anyway.
This is on my phone, for music that I listen to when I am at the gym and the heavy beats and guitar riffs get me working out extra hard. (ever tried to work out to Enya?) A song called "One" came on that almost moved me to tears.
The lyrics that got me were only this..."oh, please God wake me"
The song goes on to say that the landmine (from a war) had "taken my sight, taken my speech, taken my hearing, taken my arms, taken my legs...taken my soul, left me with life in hell.
I know this is a leap, but TO ME...I got so much from that. How often am I hurt and shattered from some experience, or someone trying to box me into a certain mold that I feel just like that wounded man?
I can so relate to being blind, deaf, mute and helpless in the face of some onslaught of legalism or control from man. Oh God...please wake me. That is my cry today.
I know that God is waking me. Many will not understand or like the changes that I am awakening to but I can attest that they are all about loving God, freedom and reaching out to the prodigals. Not sure what form that will take yet...I have to figure out where I am on my own long march to the Father. Good thing he is standing there with open arms and Jesus is carrying me over the deeper ruts and valleys.
Thank God...I am not left alone. EVER. Thank God, the word of God tells me that he would follow me to hell and back.
Where can I go from your spirit? Or where can I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there; if I make my bed in hell, you are there. If I take the wings of the morning and settle at the farthest limits of the sea, even there your hand will lead me, and your right hand hold me fast. If I say, "Surely the darkness will cover me, and the light become night around me," even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is as bright as the day, for darkness and light are both alike to you. (Psalm 139:7-12)

Monday, March 29, 2010

It's been awhile!

Still not back online yet and it is really hard to blog on my phone with the teeny keyboard. My brain works so much faster then my fingers.. Oh man, I have so many things to say!!! I am hoping that things get back to normal soon! Until then, don't give up on me...I will be back!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Speaking of Love

I was reading Dietrich Bonhoeffer this morning and came across this; It totally blew me away. I had just posted on love yesterday and was praying about what love means. This is such a powerful passage. I hope it goes deep with you!

"Jesus Christ stands between the lover and the others he loves. I do not know in advance what love of others means on the basis of the general idea of love that grows out of my human desires-all this may rather be hatred and an insidious kind of selfishness in the eyes of Christ. What love is, only Christ tells in his Word.
Contrary to all my own opinions and convictions, Jesus Christ will tell me what love toward the brethren really is. Therefore, spiritual love is bound solely to the Word of Jesus Christ. Where Christ bids me to maintain fellowship for the sake of love, I will maintain it.
Where his truth enjoins me to dissolve a fellowship for loves sake, there I will dissolve it, despite all the protests of my human love.

Because spiritual love does not desire but rather serves, it loves an enemy as a brother. It originates neither in the brother nor in the enemy but in Christ and his Word.

Human love can never understand spiritual love, for spiritual love is from above; it is something completely strange, new and incomprehensible to all earthly love.
Because Christ stands between me and others, I dare not desire direct fellowship with them. As only Christ can speak to me in such as what that I may be saved, so others too, can be saved only by Christ himself.

This means that I must release the other person from every attempt of mine to regulate, coerce and dominate him with my love. The other person needs to retain his independence from me; to be loved for what he is, as one for who Christ became man, died and rose again, for whom Christ bought forgiveness of sins and eternal life. Because Christ has long since acted decisively for my brother, before I could begin to act, I must leave him to his freedom to be Christ's; I must meet him only as the person that he already is in Christ's eyes.

This is the meaning of the proposition that we can meet others only through the mediation of Christ. Human love constructs its own image of the other person, of what he is and what he should become. It takes the life of the other person into its own hands.

Spiritual love recognizes the true image of the other person which has has received from Jesus Christ; that image that Jesus Christ himself embodied and would stamp upon all men.
Therefore, Spiritual love proves itself in that everything it says and does commends Christ. It will not seek to move others by all too personal, direct influence, by impure interferences in the life of another.
It will not take pleasure in pious, human fervor and excitement. It will rather meet the other person with the clear Word of God and be ready to leave him alone with this Word for a long time, willing to release him him again in order that Christ may heal with him.

It will respect the line that hes been drawn between him and us by Christ, and it will find full fellowship with him in the Christ who alone binds us together.
Thus this spiritual love will speak more to Christ about a brother than to a brother about Christ. It knows that the most direct way to others is always through prayer to Christ and that love of others is wholly dependent upon the truth of Christ. It is out of this love that John the disciple speaks "I have no greater jot than to hear that my children walk in truth" (3 John 4)

Human love lives by uncontrolled and uncontrollable dark desires; spiritual love lives in the clear light of service ordered by the truth.
Human love produces subjection, dependence, constraint; spiritual love creates freedom of the brethren under the Word.
Human love breeds hothouse flowers;spiritual love creates the fruits that grows heartily in accord with God's good will in the rain and storm and sunshine of God's outdoors.
The existence of any Christian life together depends on whether it succeeds at the right time in bringing about the ability to distinguish between a human ideal and God's reality, between spiritual and human community."

Dietrich Bonhoeffer-Life Together.

Friday, February 12, 2010


Lately I have been thinking a lot about change. There is so much change always swirling around me. At times I am so resistant of change. Let's face it...change is hard. Recently however, I am embracing, almost seeking change in my life. Change in my thoughts, change in my attitudes. I want so much to go to a new place in my head and my heart.

Life has been interesting these past 3 years. Lots of loss, lots of desert wanderings for me and lots of pain. I can say that God has been faithful through it all. I might not have always recognized that...but my acceptance of the truth does not change the fact that it is valid.

Now, I feel that God is calling me to more change and I am excited by the prospect. Already I can see that He has been moving me slowly, lovingly through all the turmoil of these past years.

Things that bothered me even 4 or 5 months ago have ceased to concern me...especially things such as what other people think of me, or if I am accepted or rejected.

I believe that the pruning that God has done in my life have made me have less fear of man. It is very freeing. I have to admit that I would not (then) have chosen to walk through the pain willingly...but now that I see the fruit, I believe that I will choose change again.

Now that I see what God had in store with each lesson, the loss no longer seems to matter to me. Funny how we hold so tightly to things, dreams and relationships that are not the best thing for us. I am very humbled and thankful that God truly holds the better plan for our lives.

One thing I see glaringly as I look at life through the filter of these changes, is the rampant insistence that I am somehow supposed to change others, or to win others over to a different belief systems. I am not even talking about witnessing to non-Christians. I am referring to believers and how we treat one another.

Everyone has an ideology, an opinion or a pet conviction that they are fervently sharing and defending. It is passion for our beliefs that makes our lives worth it not? It is the essence of being alive and being awake and aware that energizes me and encourages me.

I am all for standing up for what the Word of God teaches us. I am all for seeking a higher level in our walk.

It is when people take things that are "preference issues and make them into sin issues" (thanks Sara for that wording) that I draw the proverbial line in the sand, cross my arms and refuse to go any further. I admit that I can get very rebellious in those moments. This to me is when it is no longer about love.
It is when I see fellow brothers and sisters mocked, shamed and deserted for not lining up to these preferences that my heart breaks and my blood boils. In the back biting and obvious disdain that we show others...I am devastated.

How have we gotten so far from God's intentions for love? Why are we so threatened when someone does not believe exactly as we do about everything? Can someone else disagreeing with us, arguing with us....even shunning us for what we believe actually change it? If so...then we really do not hold that belief very dear, or take it very seriously to begin with.

I have been reading a lot of books on China lately, and some of the things that Mao did during the Cultural Revolution and the atrocoties that resulted from that. It all came down to Mao insisting that all of China line up with his beliefs and ideas no matter what the cost. Millions lost their lives, their freedom, their entire way of life. China was desemated by his policies and laws...culturally, financially and spiritually raped my their "Great Chairman".
No one was allowed to disagree with him about anything.
If I consider history carefully, great caution flags should go up in my heart when I see myself pushing my beliefs on others

When someone struggles, questions their faith or even out right commits a sin, why is it that we as the Body of Christ pick up our arms and attack them in their most vulnerable moments?

There were times that I questioned many things. Things that I had previously declared to be immovable beliefs. The very shadow of doubt crossing my mind caused me tremendous confusion and pain. It did not seem right to question.
It was in those dark moments that I looked around me and witnessed horror, hatred and fear on the faces around me. My doubt and pain seemed to elicit an extreme reaction in the minds of others.

Those terrible dark moments have passed, or a reprieve has been granted, in any case I am stronger for having walked through it. God is good, all the time.

It has left me with a softer approach to those who are grinning through their own pain and walking blindly in their own doubts and fears.

I have also learned a very valuable lesson on true love. When a brother or sister is suffering, hurting, running or sinning that is NOT the time for me to get on my high horse and lecture, preach, condemn or shame them back to the truth, be that my imagined truth or the real truth whichever I am consumed with in that moment.

My job is to love them.

I know I have said that before in previous blogs. What I am learning though it that I really have to mean it. I have to practice unconditional love even fill in the blanks.
Easier said than done. True love hurts. Ask Jesus about that.

True love means that we do not care if our beliefs are threatened (as if that were possible) if our feelings are hurt or if the receiver of our love is all together unworthy. Even if they never love us back., even if they never change. True love means that we give until it hurts and keep on going.

True love is one way. I give, 100% and expect nothing in return. True love means that I allow people to fall apart, question, rage or defy without assuming that they have walked away from God or from pursuing righteousness. Without somehow feeling superior to them. Looking down y nose from my mountain top...forgetting the very valley I just came through.

True love means that I give people the room to bump their heads, to grow and to change without stepping in with anything other than open arms and a pure heart toward them.
God help me!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Thought provoking article

This is written by Reb Bradley

Saturday, January 16, 2010

It's been a while!

I haven't had a spare moment to blog since we moved around the first. I am loving "my" new house. It is a rental...but so feels like home. We went from about 1,000 sq ft. to 2400 sq ft. It is wonderful to have space. The kids seem happier and are fighting less. They aren't on top of each other anymore!

There is even a huge home school/play room downstairs. The drums and pianos are down there, so music lessons can be done without disturbing everyone. There are 4 bedrooms...plenty of room for the 9 of us. I am so thankful for the blessing of this house.
I also thankful for the blessing of every house I have lived in. So many do not have homes. I remember what it was like to not have a home for a while.

Now that we are five minutes away from it, we joined the YMCA get some much needed exercise. I was a member for many years before we moved to the sticks. Good to be back. Cutting our Starbucks will pay for it, along with a generous discount from the Y. Did you know that you can apply for reduced membership fees in hard times? Who knew. Another huge blessing.

I have been overwhelmed by the goodness of God and people. In 2 weeks time we were given gift cards for Christmas (anonymously) a tree and all the decorations on Christmas Eve, a man in Fred Meyer gave us $100,(I know!) a table and 6 chairs to do school on, a computer for the kids to use, an overhead projector for all those wonderful history transparencies I have been packing around all this time...not to mention a washer, vacuum, kitchen things and 2 more bookshelves. Talk about blessings overflowing. God is so good.

I took a small accounting job here at home, it lasted about 14 hours over 4 days. It was a challenge at first to find the time to do it with the kids and my husband and still keep up on schooling and the house. I did, but it meant getting up at 5 a.m. to work. I am hoping that I get more gigs like that. Perfect for our family in these times. It felt really good to make some money and use my skills!
The day I got paid, my brakes went out so I was able to have them fixed that day. Isn't it great how God looks out for the needs not yet here?

There are a lot of things going around in my head...I hope to blog soon on my latest thoughts.