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.