lightning fast

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Everyone tells you “it goes by fast” as if fear will motivate moms of littles to cherish every moment. We do cherish it. Those of us who work outside of the home and those of us who stay home. We cherish it just like everyone cherishes their own lives. You know? You know how we have all have to be reminded to “live each day like the last”? Or how every time something tragic happens it jolts us back into the reality of how precious and short life is? Those are humbling moments that bring perspective. If a mom of littles is feeling overwhelmed, discouraged, frustrated, etc. I can guarantee we already feel guilty that we aren’t “just loving every moment”. I know everyone means well by trying to encourage moms of littles with “cherish it now” “it goes by fast” “tomorrow they’ll be driving”. I definitely get it. When someone says this and I feel guilty for having a hard time, I remind myself they’re trying to encourage me. They’re trying to love on me. No matter how much those comments push me to condemn myself and cause me to resolve myself to “never complain again” (however, sometimes I receive these encouragements just because my boys are acting in a way that requires some extra love). I’ve even tried to find my own slant to encourage myself. My husband helps me remember everyday that this is only a season. My oldest was just where my youngest is….yesterday. And before I know it, they’ll both be self-sufficient and momma kisses will be scarce. I would never trade my time at home with my boys. Whether I stayed home or worked and my time was different with them. Just because I know something is my calling and the best for my family doesn’t always make it easy.

My husband and I have gone through some hard stuff recently. That’s where we have no choice but to lean on the Lord and trust Him. We can’t change some of these circumstances. So we roll with it and talk to the Lord and each other about it and how it can penetrate and change our hearts.  I take the same approach with hard days at home with my boys. I can’t change them and I don’t want to but I am here to train and mold them. That takes a lot of discipline and consistency for parents. Sometimes the most encouraging thing someone says to me is “you’re doing a great job.” I know it’s not hardest thing in the world to parent my children and that I’m very blessed to have them and to stay home with them. Just because something is the greatest thing in the world doesn’t mean it isn’t hard sometimes. I’ve had my dream job before (before staying home became my dream job) and it was still really hard! I needed help and I needed admonishment.

This post was brought on by a “lightning fast” milestone for Holt. He stayed up past 6:30 last night because we were at church and did surprisingly well! It caused him to sleep until 8:30 this morning (we’re going to have a GREAT DAY 🙂 I’m not a morning person. The biggest milestone, though, …… no bottle this morning. He ate breakfast and had a cup of milk. Drake pretty well weaned himself off the bottle and I didn’t have to think twice about it. He never held his own bottle so transitioning to cup made sense and worked. Holt can hold his own bottle and when he sees it, he says “nigh nigh” because it’s so comforting to him. He didn’t flinch with no bottle and I know we’ll be fine. My momma heart can’t believe my youngest is almost done with all things that resemble infancy (except those expensive diapers!).

It does go by so fast. As hard as I try to cherish every moment, some of them go by all too quickly. We can’t hold onto these moments. They just vanish. I posted once with Drake that I wish I could have one of him at every stage. It’s so true. The heart strings rip as we want to hold onto the now but also long to see them grow and flourish. Baby gear and items are flying out of his room and getting packed up and all I see are little boy clothes and toddler toys. This year I have a preschooler and a toddler. This year we continue to teach and guide and mold and train.

It’s a sweet honor that He called us to be stewards. Forgive me Lord, when it seems too much. Thank you for the grace to take it day by day and thank you for the grace to know the magnitude of this honor.

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a thorn & the cross

I hear people say “I’m going to take up my cross” and I also hear people say “This is just my thorn in the flesh”. We talk in our house a LOT about a thorn now. Something Paul referenced for himself in 2 Corinthians 12:7

7&nbsp;or because of these surpassingly great revelations.<sup class=”crossreference” value='(A)’> Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh,<sup class=”crossreference” value='(B)’> a messenger of Satan,<sup class=”crossreference” value='(C)’> to torment me.

First, we don’t consider ourselves near the caliber of Paul. So when we reference having a thorn, we are merely stating that we have an inconvenient and constant reminder of our neediness for the Lord. Second, I find it very difficult, now that my husband and I both have a constant reminder of our frailness and vulnerability, to compare any thorn we might have to the thorns that crushed Jesus’ as a crown upon his crucifixion. No thorn I could every encounter will every compare to the weight, symbolism, and pain of those thorns.

So, to take up my cross….

Luke 9:23

New International Version (NIV)

23 Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.

 

I use the Luke version, because it says daily. Deny themselves::my wants, wishes, desires, hopes, needs, what I think I deserve, my plans, what I think is best, ALLLLLL of it.

So there’s an order to this obedience.

  1. I want to be a disciple.
  2. Deny myself.
  3. Take up my cross. Every. Day.
  4. Follow Him.
We make things so hard. Do I want to be a disciple?
What’s a disciple?
2. any follower of Christ.
also to teach or share.
Yes? Okay…next….deny myself. What does that look like?
Through prayer and study of the Word (inerrant) seek out and learn who Christ is and pursue a life that looks like His. This is not an easy task, but a life-long journey of developing a lifestyle comparable to Him. We are sinners. We make mistakes. Along the journey, though, we love people, we repent, we resolve conflict, we point others towards Christ. We deny our selfish ambitions that are only driven to benefit ourselves, putting others first. We deny our need and want to be right. We forfeit the world’s mentality of “me first”. We learn to listen the Spirit because good things do come from the Lord and we don’t have starve ourselves of the best things in order to deny ourselves. That’s why we have the Spirit, we ask Him for discernment.
Walking with Him and talking with Him? Great….now take up my cross.
He died on the cross. Daily take up my cross. Daily recognize His sacrifice for my sins. Daily repent. Daily ask Him for direction. Daily submit to His will which is for me to share Christ and His love with others.
Now, follow Him. “Wherever He leads, I’ll go.” Great hymn, great Truth. If there’s something in your path that is good, trust the Spirit’s leading. Sometimes He really does give us choices and we get to choose and there is no wrong answer. Sometimes, He leads us towards one specific direction and we are to choose obedience.
We have to walk this path together. Taking up our cross daily always involves the counsel of the Spirit and others. A mentor, a friend, a pastor, someone who walks daily with Him too who can ask the hard questions and who can provide life experience alongside your journey is the topping on the cake of life when it comes to maneuvering this life as a believer.