One of those “words” I mentioned…

Psalm 50:23
The one who offers thanksgiving as his sacrifice glorifies me;
To the one who orders his way rightly
I will show the salvation of God!

Sometimes it is a sacrifice… but the Spirit-lilting, lifting joy, and power that follow are all grace. Grace, grace, grace.

And how amazing that even my meager sacrifice is worth something, something… to the Savior.

Write My Heart

Write My Heart

I recently revisited some writing I have begun for my boys. A tale of virtue…And I found the words working hard on my own mind and heart. Convicting. I want to get back to it- but time is elusive and I wonder if it is the season for it… yet- I am called back to examine my own heart and repent, draw higher than I am and have been. I also want to live the truths those words are illuminating. Live them. Not just write them. Live them for my boys who are growing, growing so fast.

Two posts by Sally Clarkson have really, really been working in my heart and mind and relate to this-
So-

Holiness

“No one can be holy for you.”
These words have been finding me in quiet, odd, alone places. So very true. What is the integrity of my private, alone life- because even I, with children all about from day til night- have it. The minutes where the rubber meets the road- and what will I choose? What will I choose???

And, “When I graduated from college, I worked on the staff of Campus Crusade for 2 years at the University of Texas and then I moved to Eastern Europe to travel in Communist countries as a missionary. I had the illusion that because I had a committed heart, I was mature.So he gave me a husband and children, so that I could really find out what sacrificial love was all about. It has not been easy to pull out the weeds of expectations; to fight the storms of giving up my rights; to endure the drought of feelings that did not always match up to what I thought a loving wife and mother should feel in a happy home. But, I kept holding on to Him, pondering His life and seeking to be loyal through faith in His reality and presence, even though I could not always see Him. “ (bolded part is my emphasis). Ah, yes- this struck hard for me… I had the illusion that because I had a committed heart, I was mature. Work this, work this in me Lord. She reaps fruit now, years and years later. Will I?

I want to live an authentic, “fessed up” repentant life of faith. I am called to question the ministry to my children and how it can be more of what it ought to be and what I truly desire it to be. The days spin by. Even in days of exhaustion, fatigue, irritation, burdens- I need to live in the power of the life of Christ and not in my flesh. I can think of any excuse- but excuses don’t stop the march of time. What will I make of it by the grace of our God, within the boundaries and limits He has placed me in, with the measure He has given me?

May His Word light up my heart like yellow-white flame on stone. Alive, it flickers, let it flame.

1 Timothy 6:11-12 (English Standard Version)
Fight the Good Fight of Faith
11But as for you,(A) O man of God,(B) flee these things.(C) Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. 12(D) Fight the good fight of the faith.(E) Take hold of the eternal life(F) to which you were called and about which you made(G) the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.

Endless Gifts

Endless Gifts
Otherwise known as a small gratitude journal, quiet “quick” shots of God’s grace in my life. As my youngest brother said to me, “God is unchanging. He never changes. It is us that are cyclical and we move through seasons. He is always the same. Everywhere. ” He is.

1.)The sound of a “just waked up little boy” playing quietly happy in his crib before the start of the day…
2.)A Holy Experience– which somehow- helps me find myself when I feel lost, sometimes
3.)An unexpected birthday card
4.)An unexpected gift, with an unexpected note. Sweet friend, I appreciate you and your precious, praying girls.
5.)A bouquet of multi-colored lilies from my brother. Delivered on my birthday- and still they bloom. Beautiful. And their beauty lifts my heart. And his generosity and love stills me quiet.
6.)These words from an old Keepers At Home… “Make a habit of noticing and treasuring little bits of beauty scattered throughout your day…God is a master artist! Notice how He uses color, texture, scents, and sounds to creaty beauty. Let’s make a habit of noticing and thanking Him for His handiwork…As wives and mothers we can paint much beauty onto the canvas of our family. We need to imitate God and creaty beauty for them. Ladies, we need to drink from the Well of Beauty each morning if we hpe to imitate Him in our own life…There is so much beauty in kindness. Let each one of us seek for ways to bring beauty into the lives of our family and others we meet on the path of life.“ by Mirian Wengerd, Keepers at Home Volume 17, Issue 4, Winter 2009. She ends with, “Shine for Him!” Yes. Yes. Yes.
7.)A sweet Christian friend who delivers to my door on my hardest day- a bountiful, bountiful meal- and provisions- silverware, plates, glasses. And she even brings me ingredient lists. Right on my radar. We all open eyes amazed. And even more than the generous care- the opportunity to point my children to Jesus and show His tangible love. Thank you. Thank you with all my heart. Eyes tear. Also just to see her smiling face. We all light up.
8.)Twin girls growing in the womb. We all start to wrap our minds around pink bundles. More and more. Amazing blessing(s), God- I thank You.
9.)Pansies- sweet faces blooming. Lift my heart- when all I can see is the mud on one of our plots and the trailer that needs organizing. 😉 How sweet to see their purple, white, yellow faces blooming.
10.)Our fireplace. We are still having issues with our heat pump- and our large stone fireplace- the centerpiece of the Great Room has been warming hearts and bodies lately. And even I have gotten moderately good at keeping it going and layering the fuel.
11.)Art and Sculpture that feeds the mind and soul. I just can’t bear to replace the Rembrandt- so we are going to set up a smaller “gallery” downstairs to rotate artists several times a year. Next up Van Gogh and then maybe Cassatt… we’ll see. But the Rembrandt is staying put. WillowTree Demdaco- carefully chosen pieces gathered over years- memorializing. Bright family photographs in frames. A local artist who paints our mountain glory and two small framed prints on my walls.
12.) Vinyl wall lettering. I love it. I love it when its Scripture, especially.
13.)The Word. It never returns void. And right now my mind grasps aimlessly trying to recall specific words that have fed me this week. I can’t. But I know they did… 😉
14.) And I cannot forget- the sweet, sweet delight of my two year old’s chirping voice as he repeats Scripture with Daddy almost every night at family bible. Precious, precious, precious and how my heart melts and smiles and I can’t stop the grin when I hear him. How is he big enough to say all those hard words of whatever verse his turn lands upon? Yet he does. He does.
15.)O yes, and the dear sweet lady I met this morning at a different church who took the time to talk to my children. Proclaimed to me with precious sincerity how much she loves children, and also proceeded to praise Todd and I for how we have raised them thus far. Her words, they were precious, and they fed my soul and I prize them. Thank you.

holy experience

What’s On My Mind

What’s On My Mind

Baby Names.
Baby Names… Baby Names.
More Baby Names.
We have a slightly narrowed down list- and yet- I still can’t rest in it.
Twins adds this whole new dimension to everything (including me.)
One of our girls will bear a family name. The rest of our family follows a pattern of biblical names. Also, we have always carefully chosen names based on their meanings as well. Finding a biblical name for precious Baby B that also flows well with her twin sister is making my mind swirl. Plus- I seem to have this penchant for flowery, elaborate or strange/unique names this pregnancy. Then there is the “twin thing” aka how similar/ dissimilar should their names be… etc. Here are my two favorites- that we will NOT be using: Isabella (Bella) Rose and Amelia (Ami) Hope. Ah well. I have also recently discussed Sylvie, Esme (Es- May), Amity (love this one- has a bad association for Todd so we can’t use it.  It is a beautiful virtue name), Nora (Honora/Honoria- Todd brought up Nora- I needed it to be a nickname), Adelaide, Bethanie, Arabella, Annabella. I liked Avery til I learned it was pagan. Blek. Name overload.

This is a big change for me- as usually, through prayer, and “listening” to the little one in the womb- I have a definite, strong, unshakeable sense of the name.

I am very high maintenance this pregnancy (girl hormones) and do NOT like being unsettled about anything- including baby names.

Nesting. I have an unshakeable urge to organize, purge, decorate, and otherwise, change, alter, and manage our house. Thankfully Todd jumped on the wagon for me. Thankfully. And I am working my way systematically down my several page list of “to do” items. I give full rein to it when I have the energy because it is so unpredictable as to the days when I am able to push through and the days when I have to rest more. I want to move furniture, rearrange rooms, etc. Right now I am contenting myself with “decorating” a.k.a putting up pictures, scriptures, maps, etc. and organizing clothing and closets and bookshelves.

My grandmother. I wish I could ask her how she did it and how she felt. Also- if her twin girls were on time and how big they were. I could ask my aunts for those details. Hopefully I will!

Priorities. The fledglings in my nest need more from me than I have been giving them and I am purposing to focus on that and order my days accordingly.

Baby plans and delivery.

Some of what’s On My Mind.