Monday, November 21, 2011

What? It's not all about me?

What a crazy trip. I will mull it over and have many words for you later, but I think the biggest thing I was reminded of this week was that God has His own agenda, and it's always better than mine...even if it cramps my style.

This passage has been my mantra the last 4 days, that I would set aside my own earthly desires and focus on what GOD desires of me. And it has been such a comfort.

"Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory." Colossians 3:1-4

Spending these days battling the enemy side by side with my daughter was so eye-opening, and really helped me to stop seeing her as my baby girl but a young woman God is growing and training. She is tenacious in her love for her God, and her commitment to staying faithful to Him inspite of the situation. Such an encouragement to this Mama's heart.

Homeward bound!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Hawaii Day 1- "Whad's da haps, bra?"

What a crazy week! On Tuesday I was fully prepared to keep missing my daughter for another week. Then on Wednesday I got a surprise birthday present- a trip to Hawaii to meet up with her! How good is our God? Steve and I had contemplated sending me with her in the beginning, but we decided to save the money instead and let her have special time with her Grandma.

Well, by day one she was so homesick, and it just broke my heart. Then God blessed us both through my mom's generosity! So amazing!

I normally hate traveling and never want to play tourist, but to see my girl, it makes it all worth it! Not to mention being WARM for the first time in weeks! I walked out of the airport and just had to stop and soak it warm!

It's the rainy season in Hawaii, so I don't know how much sun we will get, but it will be so fun to catch up with my Auntie who lives here and see Jasmine experience this state for first time. We barbequed with the family last night, got thoroughly lost as we tried to go downtown to see a movie, bumped the music as we sped down the mountain and enjoyed the night lights, and laughed until we cried as we "people watched".

Father, you are far too good to me. After a week of tears and worry, between missing my girl, watching my husband struggle with lost, and hurting for teens that have to struggle so hard, God has absolutely put a smile back on my face.

I am going to go soak up the warmth, drive around the island...and praise the Lord for His never ending compassion. Oh, to have a God who UNDERSTANDS us. Thank you, thank you!

"For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need." Hebrews 4:15-16

Monday, November 14, 2011

I hate running.

Yet another first to log in the memory bank today. I put my baby girl on a Hawaii...alone. I know, shouldn't be that big of a deal. But to me, it is HUGE. She was so excited, and nervous, and happy at the same time. With tears she begged us to come with her, and then with a smile and a wave she got on the plane and left. The attitude of that kid amazes me. She is going to be able to get through anything life deals out.

God gave me the grace to send her off with a grin and no tears, but the minute she was out of sight- yeah, that was pathetic. I suppose when the 20 year old kid behind me walked up and handed me some napkins I should of know I am a wimp. But then when he looked me in the eye and said, "I can see your tears through the reflection of the window...can I help you, ma'am?" I officially made "crybaby whiner" status.

All in all, the goodbye is the hardest part. Now I can thoroughly distract myself with work, horses, friends, and yard work. It is going to be a great 8 days and I am not going to whine or cry about missing my girl. I know I have a tendency to make my children into idols- pouring all my energy, efforts and time into them and forgetting that there is only one thing that should have that kind of total devotion. My Jesus.

I have been hanging out in Hebrews the last week, and after cruising through Hebrews 11 and all those "Heroes of Faith", it made me want to believe bigger of God. Then I read this today and it so hit my heart after sending Jasmine off:
"...let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith." Hebrews 12:1-2

We have been running in a million different directions and we are getting nowhere. And as much as I hate it, I need to "run" like my life depended on it but with a SPECIFIC goal in sight. Never quitting, never tiring- but pushing through to the end. I want to "throw off" the sin of self sufficiency, of self indulgence, even of false worship. My eyes need to not be fixed on my family, my fun times, or simple comforts, but wholly fixed on Jesus- my perfecter and redeemer. Thank you, Lord. For reminding me what really matters! Thank You for holding me close when I am weak, and kicking my butt when I slow down. Oh, how blessed I am!

(While I am busy "running" towards you, I put my sweet treasure, my girl, in your strong, safe arms. Bring her back to us soon.)

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

To "dwell" in peace and safety...sounds pretty good.

November. Already? Life speeds by and I just can't catch up. Thank the Lord He doesn't expect me to have it all together. I just keep reading this Psalm over and over...and it frustrates me in the middle- because I know how many "false gods" I have in my life, and how often I shame the Lord. But then the end reminds me how GOOD my God is. That He would allow me to "lie down in safety".

Hope you read it and find the special voice of God for you today, friend.

"Answer me when I call to you,
my righteous God.
Give me relief from my distress;
have mercy on me and hear my prayer.

How long will you people turn my glory into shame?
How long will you love delusions and seek false gods?
Know that the LORD has set apart his faithful servant for himself;
the LORD hears when I call to him.

Tremble and do not sin;
when you are on your beds,
search your hearts and be silent.
Offer the sacrifices of the righteous
and trust in the LORD.

Many, LORD, are asking, “Who will bring us prosperity?”
Let the light of your face shine on us.
Fill my heart with joy

when their grain and new wine abound.

In peace I will lie down and sleep,
for you alone, LORD,
make me dwell in safety
." Psalm 4

(Pictures were from a trail ride on Whipple Creek. Oh, how I love those woods. They are truly the best therapy around.)

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Anxiety can be funny.

I have been spending my days freaking out lately. Really. Anxiety and worry is a full time job, and I am enjoying overtime the last couple of weeks.
Then I got these in an email...and remembered that laughter is my drug of choice for the treatment of all my mental disorders.
(I have no excuse for my insanity of late except my plans for the future have been obliterated and I have been throwing a temper tantrum. So please know I am not making fun of actual mental disorders, my heart hurts for those who suffer from these diseases. But feel free to poke fun at me all you like, as my only disease is sin and self righteousness. ;)

Welcome to the Psychiatric Hotline.
If you are obsessive-compulsive, please press 1 repeatedly.
If you are co-dependent, please ask someone to press 2.
If you have multiple personalities, please press 3, 4, 5, and 6.
If you are paranoid-delusional, we know who you are and what you want. Just stay on the line so we can trace the call.
If you are schizophrenic, listen carefully and a little voice will tell you which number to press.
If you are depressed, it doesn’t matter which number you press. No one will answer.
If you are delusional and occasionally hallucinate, please be aware that the thing you are holding on the side of your head is alive and about to bite off your ear.

* Drive to work in reverse.
* Dance naked in front of your pets.
* Use your Mastercard to pay your Visa bill.
* Make a list of things you have already done.
* Pop some popcorn without putting the lid on.
* Find out what a frog in a blender really looks like.
* Jam tiny marshmallows up your nose and try to sneeze them out.
* Read the dictionary backwards and look for subliminal messages.
* When someone says "Have a nice day!" tell them you have other plans.
* Thumb through the National Geographic and draw underwear on the natives.
* Put your toddlers clothes on backward and send her off to preschool as if nothing is wrong. (Would this work for my teenagers? Hmmmm...)
* Get boxes of condoms and randomly put them in peoples carts when they don't realize it.
* Set all the alarm clocks to go off at ten minute intervals throughout the day.
* Run up to an employee (preferably a male) while squeezing your legs together and practically yell at him "Where are your tampons?"
* Try on bras over top of your clothes.
* Walk up to an employee and tell him in an official tone, "I think we've got a Code 3 in housewares," and see what happens.
* Tune all the radios to a polka station; then turn them all off and turn the volumes to "10."
* Challenge other customers to duels with tubes of gift wrap.
* Re-dress the mannequins as you see fit.
* Test the fishing rods and see what you can "catch" from the other aisles.
* Put M&M's on layaway.
* Move "Caution: Wet Floor" signs to carpeted areas.
* Set up a tent in the camping department; tell others you'll only invite them in if they bring pillows from Bed and Bath.
* When someone asks if you need help, begin to cry and ask, "Why won't you people just leave me alone?"
* Take up an entire aisle in Toys by setting up a full scale battlefield with G.I. Joes vs. the X-Men.
* While handling guns in the hunting department, suddenly ask the clerk if he knows where the anti-depressants are.
* Dart around suspiciously while humming the theme from "Mission Impossible."
* Hide in the clothing racks and when people browse through, say things like "Pick me!! Pick me!!" and scare them into believing that the clothes are talking to them.
* When an announcement comes over the loudspeaker, assume the fetal position and scream, "No, no! It's those voices again!"
* Go to an empty checkout stand and try to check people out.
* Go into the dressing room and yell real loud..."Hey, were out of toilet paper in here!"

"Severe Stress: A woman accompanied her husband to the doctor’s office. After his checkup, the doctor called the wife into his office alone. He said, “Your husband is suffering from a very severe stress disorder. If you don’t do the following, your husband will surely die.” The doctor continued, “Each morning, fix him a healthy breakfast. Be pleasant at all times. For lunch make him a nutritious meal. For dinner prepare an especially nice meal for him. Don’t burden him with chores. Don’t discuss your problems with him, it will only make his stress worse. No nagging. And most importantly, make love with your husband several times a week. If you can do this for the next 10 months to a year, I think your husband will regain his health completely.” On the way home, the husband asked his wife. “What did the doctor say?” To which his wife responded, “He said you’re going to die.”

Wow. I feel so much better now.