Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Where do you belong?

"Sometimes it feels like I'm watching from the outside
Sometimes it feels like I'm breathing but am I alive
I won't keep searching for answers that aren't here to find

All I know is I'm not home yet
This is not where I belong
Take this world and give me Jesus
This is not where I belong"

Wow! What powerful lyrics! The opening words to the song "Where I Belong" by Building 429. This song has become one of mine and Courtney's favorite songs. Every time I hear it on the radio I have to turn the volume up and praise God. It's such a blessing to hear my baby's voice singing the words from the back seat. These words have been running through my head these last few days. "All I know is I'm not home yet, this is not where I belong, TAKE THIS WORLD AND GIVE ME JESUS, this is NOT WHERE I BELONG". I just want to shout it from the rooftops! I don't need or want anything of this world, Lord. Take this world and give me Jesus...I'll glady trade dung for gold!

"When the earth shakes
I wanna be found in You
When the lights fade
I wanna be found in You"

My wonderful brother in Christ, Pastor Tony, has preached many times on groaning, longing to be home with the Lord. I used to think that I wanted the Lord to delay his coming so I could accomplish what I wanted to in life. My wants needed to come first in my selfish mind and heart. Tony said something during one of his sermons one Sunday that totally changed my heart. I will paraphrase but he basically said that as Christians, our hearts should GROAN and LONG to be in the presence of Jesus. If we are not groaning or longing for His return, have we hardend our hearts towards Him? To not groan or long for His return is like telling your spouse (or significant other) that they are no longer "good enough" for you...they are no longer your true love and you are going to look else where for fullfillment.

Wow! Now that stomped on my toes. Okay, okay! Uncle! I give up! You're right, I'm wrong, Lord. I'm sorry; please forgive me. I had to ask forgiveness from the Lord after hearing those words because I knew they were meant for my ears to hear. I knew I was wrong in what my heart desired up until that point. Now with that realization, the enemy knew he had to get to work...he was losing ground on a major issue. Lies and deception still creep into my mind at times and I have to rebuke them, ignore them, not give them any ground in my life. I refuse to go back to that selfish point in my life where my wants came before my desire for the return of the one true King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

Where will you be when the earth shakes? Where will you be with the lights fade? Will you be found in Jesus or will you be found hiding in a corner hoping He doesn't see you? I know where I will be. I will be found in Him and I thank the Lord everyday for looking past my selfishness and ugliness and loving me anyway.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Home with me or out in the world?

So, it's been a while since I've posted anything on here. Not sure what to post now but we'll see where this goes.

My mind seems to be running constantly lately...always thinking, praying...wondering. As many people know, I left my job to be a stay at home mommy...my DREAM "job" come true. I believed (and still do) that home with my children is where God wants me. I'm content, happy, at peace here and I believe my relationship with my children has improved because of where I am today. My hearts desire was to be at home and here I am...yay! What I may not have shared with some people is my hearts desire is to also home school my daughter. My son is in public school, and has been all of his school age years. While he is doing wonderfully academically, the influences of the world around him concern me.

Have you really sat down and counted the number of hours you spend with your children every day? Even though I'm  home now, I really only see my son from 3:30 to 9:00 (bedtime) during the week. That's only 5.5 hours a day...yet he spends 7.5 hours a day at school. With that said, who really influences my son? Me or his friends at school? Who does he spend  more time with? Who is he socializing with? What are the beliefs of the children that he's hanging out with? What kind of godly, Christian examples is he seeing (and setting for others) at school? How much of a "hold" do I have on him in the daily battle of "good vs. evil"? Is he prepared for what the world may be like when he graduates? Academically, probably...he's a very smart kid. But the better & bigger question is what kind of man of God is he growing up to be when he's surrounded by the "things of this world" at school? Who is showing the love of Christ to him in a PUBLIC SCHOOL where it's illegal to pray out loud? Who is holding my child accountable to show the love of Christ to others while he's at school? I can't be there to follow him around, reminding him to love others as Christ loves him, to treat others the way he wants to be treated, etc. And when he's in a bind, a scary/worldly moment, when he has to decide if he's going to respond to the situation as a Christian, or respond the way he sees and hears others around him respond, what do you think he will do? I can only hope and pray he would respond the way we do here at home, but how would I know? Who is there to hold  him accountable? Who is there for my child?

All of the above fears are now doubled with my daughter nearing school age. Everyone has told me raising a boy is different from raising a girl...for various reasons; "girls mature faster", "boys can take of themselves easier then girls", "girls in school are mean", etc. I can vouch for that last opinion for sure. Growing up in public schools, girls are mean and hateful towards other girls. Children in general nowadays are just plain mean towards each other. With the almost daily stories of bullying in schools, no wonder children are suffering. Times were just different when I was growing up. Even though it wasn't easy then, it's far worse now.

For anyone who knows me, you know my relationship with my daughter is unique. She is my shadow, my best friend, my sunshine. Don't get me wrong; I love BOTH OF MY CHILDREN EQUALLY. My son is the first "love of my life". Raising him as a single parent for 4 years was an exhausting, mind-opening, scary, time in my life but I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world. For 4 years, we had each other to lean on and I learned more about myself then ever before. I will always treasure those years with him. With that said, he is now at the age where "mom's not cool, she doesn't know anything," etc. You know how it goes...we were all kids at one time and thought the same thing. Don't lie! You know you did! :-) Anyway, he's at the age now where he's off doing his own thing and not really concerned about me or what I'm doing...I'm okay with that though because I know one day I'll be cool again.

Now, back to the home schooling thing. Since my daughter was born, we've been stuck like glue to each other. I've always been there to protect her, guide her, love her through all life has thrown at her in these short 4 years. Now that she's nearing Kindergarten, I'm having to face the reality of letting her go...and I can't bear to think about it. Tears come to my eyes (as they are now) and I get a lump in my throat, nauseous on my stomach, when I think of sending her to school. I can't do it. I would need to be heavily medicated in order to make it through the day. The thought TERRIFIES me. When my son entered school, we were not in a financial position to allow me to stay home and home school. And even if we were, I'm not sure that I would have home schooled him; I didn't know that much about it, especially the benefits, at that time. My Christian walk was not where it is now. I'm still lacking in a lot of areas in my relationship with Christ, but I can honestly say now that I'm more aware of the dangers of this world towards Christians then I was back then.

My husband, on the other hand, is completely against home schooling our children so now I'm stuck dealing with the fact that I'm standing alone on this issue in our household. Back to the mind constantly running thing I addressed earlier...this is why. I don't know what I'm going to do besides trust in the Lord. I'm  hoping and praying that when the time comes to prepare my daughter for Kindergarten I will no longer be standing alone.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

What to do?

Have you ever found yourself in a crowded room yet you still feel lonely? What about sitting next to your spouse, or significant other, yet you have nothing to say? What do you do when loneliness creeps in like a fog? You never really see it coming but you know when you're in the middle of it. That's where I think I find myself today. As a Christian, I know I'm never truly alone...I have Christ with me, in me, at all times. I guess that's also why loneliness can also be one of the forbidden topics Christians shouldn't talk about..."What!? YOU'RE lonely??? I just don't see how that's possible if you know Christ." But guess what...it can happen and does happen thanks to our ever present enemy....he always seems to know when and how to swoop in and steal your joy.

After nearly 9 years of marriage, I still find myself struggling with loneliness sometimes. It is in these times that I'm constantly reminding myself that I am never alone (not an easy thing to remember when you're in the midst of the "woe-is-me" feelings). Christ is all I need, all I'll ever need, and more. He supplies my joy, my love, and my peace. Yes, I know all the right answers, I know what I'm SUPPOSED to say and how I'm SUPPOSED to think...now try applying those thoughts and feelings to your personal life when you feel at your lowest (or close to it). Let me know how that works out for you...

I am married to the love of my life, my best friend. He is a wonderful husband, provider, and amazing father. I know anything, and I mean ANYTHING, I ask for, he gladly gives. But still after all these years, I'm still trying to figure things out. How do two totally different people communicate in a way that is pleasing to both parties involved, and keep Christ at the center? Ah, ha! The million dollar question.  My husband and I have a great relationship. He is my best friend, he makes me laugh to the point of tears, brings a smile to my face and butterflies to my stomach every time he walks into the room. Knowing the closeness of our relationship, still I struggle. Outsiders looking in tell me we are "two peas in a pod", "fit like a hand and glove", etc, and for the most part we do...yet we still have some struggles like any other couple. No one's perfect, right?

Jeremiah 29:11

Monday, October 17, 2011

1st blog!!!

So...welcome to my very 1st blog! I've never really had the desire to blog but I've been spending SO MUCH time on the computer, I figured I might as well put my time to good use...and spending time on facebook doesn't count! :-) My blogs are intended to share my thoughts and feelings with anyone who cares to read them. I've always thought I was better at expressing myself through written words...something about sitting down and writing (or in this case typing) my feelings has always been so easy for me...allowed me to be more honest then I would in person. Don't know what's up with that... Anyway, here goes...

How did I get to this point in my life??? Ever since I left my job to be a full time mommy (yay!) I've been filled with contentment and peace...thank you Lord! My heart longed to stay home since my little princess was born 4 years ago but it wasn't in the Lord's plan I guess. Funny how He makes you wait...and wait...and wait...for HIS perfect time. :-) At any rate, it took some "minor" convincing with Jason (my wonderful, loving, adorable, funny, aggrivating) husband, before I could take the bold step to leave the job I'd worked at for 13 years for this new adventure and I wouldn't change it for anything in the world! Sacrifices had to be made, of course, in order for me to be able to follow my heart but I know the Lord will provide and has provided for us in this journey so far.

To give you an idea of just SOME of the sacrifices I had to make...I traded my brand NEW car (not even 1 year old) in for a car that is 7 years (count them 7 years) old! And I'm thrilled I did! Who needs all the bells and whistles??? I just need something to get me from point A to point B. I've also curbed my shopping habit TREMENDOUSLY to the point that IF I'm out shopping, I won't look at ANYTHING unless it's on sale...clearance is even better! :-) And that says A LOT about me. I mean, I'm the girl that used to shop EVERY WEEKEND with my mom and ALWAYS came home with something new. I've since learned materialistic things are void...count them as lost...they bring temporary happiness only to require the need to be fulfilled again with other materialistic things....such a vicious circle!

I'm learning to lean on the Lord and trust Him for what I need not what I want. That's a hard thing to do in today's society. When is enough enough? Well, enough was enough for me when I realized I couldn't take any of my "shopping treasures" or my brand new car with my to heaven. When I realized that my children were growing up without me. When I realized I would rather spend every minute possible with my kids then I would driving in my hot new car to the next shopping center to find the lastest fashion item that would eventually become outdated.

Well, that's it for now. This weather is beautiful and the porch is calling my name! Until next time!

God bless! :-)