"If the God you believe in as an idea doesn’t start showing up in what happens to you in your own life, you have as much cause for concern as if the God you don’t believe in as an idea does start showing up. It is absolutely crucial, therefore, to keep in constant touch with what is going on in your own life’s story and to pay close attention to what is going on in the stories of others’ lives. If God is present anywhere, it is in those stories that God is present. If God is not present in those stories, then they are scarcely worth telling." ~ Frederick Buechner

26 June 2016

To be Nourishment

For the past several months, ever since I realized I would be approaching noticeable discomfort just in time for our city's annual fireworks celebration, I had been saying I would stay home this year with Little Lady (and that the guys could go on their own). 

Well, guess who was the pushover of the day? 

We headed over to the park after dinner, opting to drive part of the way instead of walking the entire way like we usually do. This ended up not being as great of an idea as we thought because: illogical drivers. It took us much longer to get home, but the kids were troopers! 

They clearly take after their father.

Case in point: while we were waiting for the fireworks to start, I got grumpy because one of B's glow sticks hit me in the face (I had already asked him to stop throwing them around). And then A spilled an entire cup of lemonade on the blanket we were sitting on. Nich whisked the kids away for a potty break so I could compose myself (and not erupt!). 

Tonight, after I had put A to bed, I read this: "You always know the man who has been through the fires of sorrow and received himself, you are certain you can go to him in trouble and find that he has ample leisure for you. If a man has not been through the fires of sorrow, he is apt to be contemptuous, he has no time for you. If you receive yourself in the fires of sorrow, God will make you nourishment for other people."

Oh, for the humility and teachable spirit to be true to who God has made me to be, even in times of sorrow and stress! And to be nourishment to those around me, even in the midst of adversity! 

I crept into B's room to apologize for my grumps earlier and found him fast asleep ... and burning up with a 100+ fever.  As I stroked his head and prayed healing over him, he reached up and held onto my arm in his sleep. 

I'm so grateful for grace. Grace in every day, to try again and again, to be better, to be truer to who He has called me to be.

21 June 2016


Only our closest friends (and a few others) know this: when I was pregnant with B, we had two major "scares." At a routine ultrasound (and the first appointment where Nich couldn't be with me), I learned that our precious firstborn had a cyst in his brain. The doctor who informed me of this was one I hadn't met previously, and she completely lacked compassion and patience for a stunned new mother. She abruptly delivered the news to me, told me I needed to schedule an immediate Level 2 ultrasound so they could get a better look at the baby's brain, and walked out of the room. I have crystal clear memories of numbly walking to my car in the pouring autumn rain and just sitting there in the cold, not knowing how to process this information I had just received.

And out of nowhere, God reminded me:
"’Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just to take Him at His Word.
Just to rest upon His promise
And to know, 'Thus saith the Lord!'
Jesus, Jesus, how I trust Him!
How I’ve proved Him o’er and o’er;
Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus!
Oh, for grace to trust Him more!"

I repeated that over and over in my head until the tears had stopped and I could call my husband without gasping for breath through my tears. We didn't tell anyone; we just prayed.

A few months later, following another ultrasound, we learned that his left kidney looked to be missing.

Another Level 2 ultrasound was scheduled. 

Again, those lyrics ran through my head endlessly. And we prayed.

And in both instances, by the time we had gotten to the Level 2 ultrasound, the issues had been "resolved." 

I know those were not medical flukes. I know those were moments of trust-building, of God teaching this Type A control freak early on that, ultimately, I was not, and am not, in control of my children's lives, health, or what have you. And as this blogger says, "It also showed me where peace is ultimately found: Not in pleasant circumstances or the feeling that 'all is well' in my child’s world, but in the palm of God’s hand as He allows whatever He will to come [their] way and mine."

I currently have a fairly large fibroid cyst sitting quite close to my cervix. It has the potential of blocking this baby's birth if it continues to grow and if it does not move over the remaining months. 

I've been reminded repeatedly of God's faithfulness to us in the past, that He knows this little girl even better than I do, that He knows exactly what she looks like, what her personality will be, whether she'll have curls like her sister or soft, brown eyes like her brother. 

Oh, for grace to trust Him more.