Monday, December 26, 2011

Old Writings # 1

I've decided to post a few things that I've written over the last few years about significant things in our life.  The first one is about my little Quinn.  It's her birthday week so I think it's appropriate. This was written not long before Quinn was born- sometime around December, nearly 3 years ago.  This is just a sort of journal of my thoughts during that time--but I dedicate it to Quinn.  She is a treasure.

Quinn's presence in my body has taught me many things.  She is our first baby and she is extraordinary.  I am concerned with her every move, every new change.  I've learned that I can live through vomiting every day.  I have learned that the body is made to stretch in all sorts of creative ways to make room for a tiny little girl.  I have discovered what the other side of 200 pounds looks like.  Enough talk of physical revelations- God has revealed interesting things through this baby girl and she hasn't even made her grand appearance yet. Quinn has a favorite spot in my tummy.  She gets in the top left corner of my tummy and nestles herself in under my ribs.  I have wondered why this spot is favored over others.  I was talking to a friend and mentioned this to her.  She said her nurse told her once that babies love that place closest to the heart because it is soothing to hear mommy's heartbeat.  What a parallel!  My little girl wants to be close to my heart.  She wants to hear what my heart has to say.  Shouldn't it be the same in our relationship with God?  Oh, that we would long for his heart in this way.  If only we would find our greatest rest and comfort closest to God's heart.  Sometimes when she makes herself at home in that special place near my heart, it becomes uncomfortable after a while.  I feel the need to move her from her place of comfort to a place where Mommy can have a moment of relief.  And so I nudge and push gently on this baby girl and try my best to force her move.  As soon as I make contact with her tiny frame, maybe an elbow or a knee, she jerks away.  It's as if she's trying to say, "No way! I've found my comfy spot and I cannot be moved!"  I continue to press gently until she gives in.  I like to consider this molding her will before she's even born.  Doesn't God want to do the same in our lives?  Just as we've found that comfortable spot where we can put up our feet and hang up a "WELCOME FRIENDS" sign, he gently nudges us to get us moving.  Complacency and apathy are bred in places of too much comfort and he loves us too much to let us stay there.  Like Quinn, as soon as we feel his gentle nudge, we quickly pull away and dig in our heels.  With gentle love he continues to push.  We slowly release defenses and let go of, at least for a moment, that secure place.  Once we give in, we find that God has been moving us to a place that is much more spacious and comfortable all along.  He only needed our cooperation to get us there.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Making Memories.

This pic has little to do with this post, except that it was taken during this season.  They're just so dang cute.

So far, with the help of the Lord and my sweet husband, I've made it through the majority of the Christmas season without feeling overwhelmed or stressed.  This has been a VERY memorable Christmastime so far and I just love that.  The Christmas parade in our little community was super sweet this year.  The little kids made adorable green peas.  Quinn was able to participate and rode along in the truck cab with some precious friends and her little buddy, Maggie.  They had fun giggling and listening to Veggie Tales sing "Feliz Navidad."  I did get a little stressed out preparing the float decorations, but I recovered and really enjoyed the day of the parade.  In the end our float won an award, which was a fun little add-on to an already great day.  Chris and I had a night out Christmas shopping and my mom-in-law kept the babies OVERNIGHT.  This is the first night we've had without babies in the house, I think since Quinn was born nearly 3 years ago.  It was very quiet and I slept well.  At least until I woke up thinking I needed to get up and check on Judah.  I realized that he was safe with Lonita and went back to sleep. Ahhhhhh.  One night a couple of weeks ago, Chris, Quinn, Judah and I went through a drive-thru Bethlehem.  I wanted to cry as my babies rode along and watched the story of the life of Jesus.  I explained the story and tried to answer questions as Quinn wanted to know, "Why did John the Baptist baptize Jesus?"  She was very interested in John the Baptist; he had a wild black beard and big, bushy black hair.  She later told my Mom that he "looked like my Daddy."  Today we went to the local nursing home to sing for the residents with the little guys from church and some of the adults from the senior's ministry.  It was great.  I was so blessed by the entire visit.  Watching the kids bring joy to these folks who were sitting alone quietly when we arrived was amazing.  Quinn just talked and smiled when the little elderly ladies oohed and ahhed over her.  She introduced them to "Red Nose the Reindeer" on her dress.  Watching my little girl, my sister's children and the sweet kiddos that I have the pleasure of teaching in kid's church minister to these people just warmed my heart.  I believe that God's heart was warmed too.  More thoughts about loving the elderly to come later- until then, IT'S SO IMPORTANT.  This week I'll prepare to be out of the office next week and to be with family all weekend for Christmas.  I was challenged early this December to commit this Christmas to Jesus, stress less and invest in creating "Jesus-centered" memories with our family.  I am so grateful; this season has been incredible.  It really has been "just what I've always wanted."  And Christmas isn't even here yet!