Monday, January 5, 2015

A Steady Path

We set standards for our lives, rules, boundaries that are put in place not on the brink of sin but instead miles away from it. We are flesh, we are tempted, we will fall!!! The lines we commit to not crossing, the holy thread we allow God to interweave into the material of our being are not there for our glory but to keep us righteous and redeemed. As parents we have an honored privilege, a grueling task, of setting these rules, not to take away freedom but to give our children a path, to help them on their walk with our Father. A walk they will stray from, that they will fall short of, just as we do. Teaching them as Proverbs 19:20 says, "If you listen to advice and accept instruction you will be wise," allows God to use them in ways sin would keep them from.

I am easily persuaded when a request comes from a kind face, a respectful attitude, and my kids have me figured out.  There are times I say, "yes," and  an hour later I wish I had said, "no."  Yet when I  set a firm, non-waivering rule, I am not easily persuaded, my children know not to ask, and the boundary structure stays in tact.
Preparing them for a world that is constantly screaming, "Tear down all the walls of righteousness, come just a little closer to sin," tempting and exciting them by luring us to the shores of sin, where the waves of desire and flesh spray our feet with what our carnal bodies crave.

For the wisdom of the world is foolishness with God.  1 Corinthians 3:19

There is a sweet time in the life of our youth where they should be unhurried, unencumbered to have quite moments with our Father. Instead the world tells our young people to do everything they can because "you are only young once." Instead of building popular children, we should be instilling our Big God into them.

Study and be eager and do your utmost to present yourself to God approved, a workman who has no cause to be ashamed, correctly analyzing and accurately dividing the Word of Truth. 
2 Timothy 2:15

Friday, October 17, 2014

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Learning to Overplay

Crazy, busy, beautiful, full, messy, loud, this picture is our home and what our "normal" looks like.  This year I have promised myself a messy home, cozy moments of sitting together, slow paces and hearts that are being filled with scriptures.

We will not overplan, we will instead overplay, we will not search for things to occupy our time, instead we will occupy each other or be content to sit, stand still and enjoy what God has blessed upon us.

So all the peoples of the earth will see 
that you are called by the name of the LORD,
 and they will be afraid of you. 
"The LORD will make you abound in prosperity,
 in the offspring of your body and in the offspring of your beast
 and in the produce of your ground, 
in the land which the LORD swore to your fathers to give you.
Deuteronomy 28:10-11

Thursday, September 11, 2014

15 years

15 years ago, I said, “I do,” to this man that compliments me in a way that always makes me better.
The knowledge I wish I could share with these two and the risky we can do “anything together” attitude I wish they could remind me of daily. I love the way these two thought, how conquering the world was plausible and obstacles beware because they were ready. 

This picture wasn’t taken on our wedding day or even on the day Corey proposed but on a day that holds my heart fierce in it’s grasp. This day is a constant reminder, a stone in our journey together, of how one’s entire being can love another. This day our path’s became parallel, not yet one but a double lane road. Our plans became similar, including the other in what we sought, with the foresight that our roads would soon be a single lane.
Wherefore comfort yourselves together, 
and edify one another, 
even as also ye do.
1 Thessalonians 5:11
The year that followed was hard and busy, beautiful and strengthening. We saw each other twice in 10 months, writing letters daily, growing on our own and planning this life that was to follow. I will always be thankful for that year, that year of growth, of sharing, of two hearts growing closer, miles apart.  We married at the end of that 10 months and 15 years later we can see how God took two very young people, with goals and dreams that were self-serving and changed them for His glory.
And we know that God causes
 all things to work together for good
 to those who love God,
 to those who are called according to His purpose.
Romans 8:28
He has watched us stumble and braced us, watched us falling and made us fly, and has turned our efforts into perfection. Without Him we would be twisting grasses in the wind but instead God has planted seeds of joy around us, fed us, sheltered us and allowed us to grow.
And yet I show you a more excellent way.
1 Corinthians 12:31
More then anything in these 15 years, I am thankful for the struggle, for the hard times, for the imperfect moments that have developed in us as muscles of strength, a heart of perseverance and anchors of trust.
Hatred stirs up dissension,
but love covers over all wrongs.

15 years ago we were scarless, our battle wounds were few, but the grooves we have now, the etches in our very being hold us tighter together, forging a unity that is ours.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

I Want Less

With fall approaching, with our schedules filling up, our calendars are becoming full.  This week my heart became anxious, my mind heavy with all the "good" programs, the great opportunities, the influentially wise people that are available for my children. I want that for them, full of knowledge, full of good things, and great skills, but my question this week was, "how do I fit it all in, these great things?"
When you say yes to
something there is less 
of you for something else.
Make sure your yes
is worth the less.
-Louie Giglio

So I have prayed and waited and through the realization of our wise Heavenly Father, I have realized I want more of this (pictured) and less of that.  I want more time with them, less busy, less going, and more influence from the parents who God has instructed these children with.  
If any of you lack wisdom, 
let him ask God, who gives 
generously to all without reproach
and it will be given to him. (James 1:5)

Why do I allow my fears and doubts to overtake me, to allow me to question what the Bible says is meant, that God will instill in Corey and me the wisdom to guide our children in the way they are to go.  We pray for them, then question if we have the ability, the resources, the fundamentals to actually train them for this world.  

As I searched through scripture, seeking wisdom in what felt like a fog of, "how do I do this?" "what is best for these people you instructed me with?," I kept coming to this verse,  

Jesus said, 
"If you hold to my teaching
you are really my disciples. 
(John 8:31) 

If they learn nothing else from me in these sweet, vulnerable years that I have with them, my hope is that I teach them to become disciples of Christ, to practice humility, to ask for wisdom, to give patience, to gain self-control, develop perseverance and to cover themselves with the armor of God. 

With all that I am, with all my failings, with all that I seek, what really matters is the influence God places on my heart for these 7 beings He has given us. 

The acid of over-activity eats holes in our souls. 
From those holes leaks the cry of the 
calling that never quite happened.
 -Lysa TerKeurst
@The Best Yes

Friday, July 4, 2014

Happy Birthday America!!

We have had some serious talks today about the country we live in, the men who fought and soldiers who died.  A day of history of when we won our Independence and a reminder of the times we have kept our freedom through the years and the thoughts of what is going on in the world around us today.  We are enjoying and others aren't given that liberty, this day is a great reminder of what we hold in our hands and walk out into each day.

 sign made by:Julia

Happy 4th of July!!!

Thursday, July 3, 2014


People ask many times,"how we do it, with 7 kids." The thought of balance and cleanliness, a sense of order and things going as planned is foreign to them, unimaginable really because the kids out number the adult and one of those parents leaves everyday, in order for the family to survive. So how does one mom handle 7? My responses have always been, "I couldn't do it without my older kids,"  "we grew into this family, it didn't just happen one day, it was gradual," and "train them, train them, it makes a difference." I truly meant those comments every time they were spoken, then last week John and Jacob were gone for 6 days, not long but long enough to know that I didn't appreciate them as much as I thought. They are my helpers, my babysitters, my strong arms, my runners, my go to guys when I need something done quickly and when they were gone, I will admit things got difficult and a little crazy. Daily life didn't work the same, little kids didn't act the same and some things got left undone.  Many times during the week I found myself saying, "I didn't realize how much John and Jacob do."

The big boys' little vacation gave our family the opportunity to have a new oldest for a week and allowed both my girls to fill in and be the extra hands that I needed.  Julia and Jillian, have big responsibilities and chores when our family is complete but I was not able to see what they couldn't do until the boys left and I realized where their training was lacking.  They are both great at caring for  their younger siblings and gravitate to that roll instead of the more physical and less pleasant jobs.

Letting any of my children go is always hard for me, but I am seeing the benefits in allowing them to leave.  Not only were we more appreciative of them when they came home they were more appreciative  of our home, the food we eat, the quietness of our land, the softness of their beds, and the normal that we create.