Thursday, April 10, 2014


Every baby is a wonder-filled miracle and our Peter is no exception. He is our baby after. After our sweet loss. After I thought I didn't want to take another chance. After Jesus showed me His mighty peace and tender courage.

I remember lying on the hospital bed in pre-op after 2 days of pills had left me feeling guilty, unsure and very, very sad.  The doctors now needed to do their work.  I was clammy with too much emotion.

Eric sat beside me and my only clear thought was that I didn't think I could do this again.  I didn't want to be so sad, I didn't want the questions of "did I do something wrong", I didn't want the pain of loving.

I think Eric prayed but really I don't know.  I was inside my head talking to God, repeating over and over, "I don't think I can do this again." I was scared and needed Him, needed to keep talking to Him.

"For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you." (Isaiah 41:13)

Then Jesus came. He let me hold my baby. A baby girl swaddled and wearing a pink knit hospital hat. I remember her sweet chest just showing where the blanket wrapped around itself.  And I knew her. I knew she was mine. I realize this sound crazy because there wasn't a baby left in my body. But I know this more than I know anything of this world. Jesus was there, closer than close.
He is truth. He is reality.

I would try again and He would be with me, whether our next baby lived for me to hold in my arms on this earth or not. He is enough. I wasn't given a "you'll try again and everything will be turn out the way you want" vision. It was more solid than my desires. Jesus was there and would always be there.
He was speaking into my life and my circumstances but it was truth for eternity.

His presence is more precious than any gift, more grounded than any grand oak, more powerful than the strongest wind. Experiencing Jesus, living IN Jesus, is more real than anything or anyone I've ever known.

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it." (John 1:1-5)

A gift born from sadness and steps of faith in Christ.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Porch thoughts

You know how you might nod your head in agreement or even give some age-old advice, but when you take a real close look at your own life, you see the big hypocrite living in your flesh and blood.  Oh how could it be that my own reflection is so foreign at times? It happens to me when I don't turn my face to the Light, and let the grime come to the surface of my soul to be
scrubbed. and cleaned. and scrubbed. and cleaned again.
it was really warm, and yes, proper safety protocol is always enforced.
 Faith is active.

uh-huh, I nod my head in agreement.

I believe this but do I really live this?  My grime is revealing; I'm selfish and most of the time I don't live this at all.  But you know if I really believe in the good news, in the good news living and present in my life now, not just as an admittance card for heaven then my life should look very

I want to sit and think, to process, to have some guy on stage with a microphone and flashy polyester suit tell me what to do.  But what I've been learning is is active! In following Christ to love my enemies (which sometimes hold the title of friend or husband), in following Christ to forgive, in  following Christ to serve the poor and downtrodden; processing happens. And that guy holding the microphone is Jesus shouting His love to me and to the world.  And I get it-it's about Jesus!  It's about His work on the cross! It's about His work!  It is not about me.

It is not about my feelings, my disappointment, my embarassment when I look in that mirror and see all that dirt.
And when, in my head, I say, "I'm tired of doing all the work"-the work of loving my husband, the work of forgiving my enemy, the work of serving.  Oh, how weak my mind, how thin my body of true wisdom.  It isn't me that loves and forgives and serves, it is Christ in me! Christ, the fullness of God and perfect man!  His power.  Not my own.  It is His love, His forgiveness, His service and yet I think I get to choose who gets to have it.

And a whole lot of the time (ok, all the time) the loving and the forgiving and the serving reveals more grime, and more of Jesus and His love and work.  And that's hard, because my pride doesn't want to see that kind of dirt.  I want to love and work and serve...and then get a pat on the back, not just the knowledge that I'm the dirtiest of them all.  See the grime?  See the dirt?  Ughhh, never-ending.

Ahh, but Jesus.  He has washed and He is washing.  And I am immeasurably thankful that God doesn't see me and my dirt; He sees His Beloved, pure and washed clean.
My prayer is that in living and working in Christ, I let the grime reveal more of Jesus and His work in

"To trust the real person of Jesus is to have confidence in Him in every dimension of our real life, to believe that He is right about and adequate to everything."  Dallas Willard, The Divine Conspiracy (my favorite book right now, eventhough I'm only 50 pages in)

Thursday, January 24, 2013


 "For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the founder of their salvation perfect through suffering." (Hebrews 2:10)

"and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery." Hebrews 2:15)

Hebrew 2 is perhaps not the chapter I was really looking for when I opened the Bible on December 13. I'm not sure what I was looking for; I knew that sweet quips and literary pats-on-the-back weren't it.

I could feel the fear and pity and anger swirling together. And many, if not most, would have said it was warranted, ok, natural to feel that way. But I had yet to really, really turn my heart and all that I am to The Lord. I felt like I didn't "get" Him. I felt tricked.
It was all about me.

For four years Eric and I had not pursued having more children because of medication worries, sweeping changes in our lives and fear of the what-ifs.
We contentedly gave this to The Lord. I knew we were pursuing God's will for our lives rather than our own plans. And I found the treasure of obedience and joy in the offering of my mind and body to The Lord.

This October a sweet life came into our lives. We were astonished and thankful.
In November we saw that sweet life beat with light and warmth; it filled up the darkness on the screen, it was so...alive. And we were thankful.
In December, December 12, all was quiet and still. That sweet life was gone. The next few hours were filled with sobbing telephone calls and difficult decisions.
And I gave thanks for the time we held that sweet life here with us.

In the morning though, after long hours of wondering about the next steps, I slipped into self-centeredness.
And I knew that I was feeding myself lies as I laid there on the couch reliving every detail of my life up to that moment in time, and every detail I was sure was coming in the next 10 years.
And I could feel the Spirit tugging me to pour Truth over my wounds, to let Love bind it all up.

Hebrews 2 awaited. I did the total, non-committal, lazy, just flip open the Bible technique.
I don't want suffering. I can't claim to be that mature. In fact, I recently confessed to friends that I would love to have something be an easy happiness. But I see the great richness in struggle. I know my weakness, and His great strength. I see His tenderness and patience as I flail and cry. Even as my rebellious spirit spits and throws punches, He draws me to Himself.  How beautiful!  My suffering Savior, strong and tender, admonishing and loving.  Truth.  Hebrews 2.

He peels away the anger and uninterrupted sadness shakes me. I cry on the couch, in the bathroom, laying on the bed, and as I sit in the dark gazing at that beautiful boy. I unclench my hands and let go of it all. Let go of my life.

I breathe through the tears of giving. Giving myself to the only one who can hold it all. All the joy and sadness...and lighthearted happiness too. He makes it all. And I feel the thanks, the thanks He is giving to me.  I'm a mixture of sadness and joy that doesn't seem appropriate for my feeble human emotions that want it all one-tracked and simple.  But I'm both and I am totally His.
"For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities-all things have been created through Him and for Him." (Colossians 1:16)

And I'm able to see a place for sadness in worship, because it is all His. Nothing is wasted, through faith-eyes given in grace, I see it is all Christ. And I know that a life without sadness doesn't mean a life of joy. I know that you can be sad and joyful and at peace as you give thanks; but you have to give yourself to do this. You have to die. I have to die.
"and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery." (Hebrews 2:15)
I won't be a slave to death. Death won't own my life. I won't fear death. But I will die. Die daily to have Life.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Afternoon fun

So, Pinterest. I love it. I like browsing through the pretty pictures and the good ideas. I like the inspiration, but truth be told, I don't actually do anything with my Pinterest inspiration. I especially don't do a whole lot with the fun kid activity ideas. I mean, you can't improve on a good exploration through the woods, but sometimes you need some some hanging out indoors fun too!
And so, I took on Pinterest one afternoon.
And the results? Pretty fun. (And easy, nothing new to buy!)

Baking soda, food coloring and vinegar

Painting with food coloring

Pipe cleaners in a colander

And I had to replace our old play-dough, so I threw this activity in

Super mom at your service-ha!

Who knew play dough was so troubling?

Monday, August 13, 2012


It's here again, that funny tug, that smile that comes with a lump in my throat.  A lump that grows from the ache in my heart as I get to watch Oliver step into little boyhood.
getting ready for Open House!

This past year, Oliver didn't go to Mother's morning out or preschool, he just stayed with me. We took walk after walk in the "whistling woods" by the "rushing river", threw countless rocks and floated stick boats.  We built train tracks and castles and came up with inventions of all sorts (most revolving around some sort of crane-like contraption).  We ran errands, went to doctor appointments, baked in the kitchen, decorated the house for made-up parties about every. other. day. And we perhaps did a little too much sewing at times.
We did life.
And I know that it sounds ridiculous to think that Oliver going to school two days a week is going to be some earth shattering event, but it is.  For me.
The thing is, I don't mind having that sweet boy with me.  It certainly gets draining at times, to always be answering questions or disciplining in love or coming up with something to eat (what's so wrong with cereal for all 3 meals?!).  But I love it.
Before Eric and I had Oliver, I actually remember having the realization that I was excited for all the mess of motherhood.  Of course I didn't really know what it would look like for our family and how it would feel maybe, but I knew, I just knew that I was ready and excited for the tough parts, the tough days or months or years.
Maybe it was having some experience working in early childhood classrooms,  teaching children that had far from any ideal situation at home. Maybe it was just kind of my personality.  Maybe it was a whole slew of things.  I do know that I never had any picture in my head of how it was going to go, no big expectations.  I didn't read a whole lot (only on cloth diapering, I researched the mess out of diapers), and I was completely unaware of the supermom-blogging world (even though I had a blog) and so I entered motherhood rather happily.
Tired, very tired and perhaps at times emotional, but happy.
And so this BIG, BIG gift weighing 8 pounds and 1 ounce was given to me.  And I was happy and excited and nervous and proud.  And on Thursday, my sweet boy, my little man, my golden little boy will be off to school--happy, excited, nervous and proud!
sharpening some new pencils!

writing fancy in his new notebook

"writing like daddy at work"

Thursday, August 9, 2012

A Recap

Summer 20-12 has been full to bursting with cousins,

beach running, lake chillin', sprinkler running, late night sky watching,

and a few good naps!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Happy love

Last week Eric and I wandered up to Hendersonville, we meandered through antique stores, junk shops, restaurants and soda shops. And in a store that smelled a little too musty and had a few too many pieces of crystal for me to feel comfortable with, we found her. She isn't a fancy colonial antique, she won't ever be prized for her monetary worth or even style, but she was the perfect anniversary gift for us to give one another.

No matter the weather I hope we always fly home to Love.