Monday, August 26, 2013

Let Him Lead through the Quiet

Good morning, sweet mommas! I'm trying to get creative with a quiet time. For those that have gym memberships, take your littles to the playroom, and then go have a few minutes to yourself before you hit the treadmill. I have to tell's lovely! First thing in the morning has become hit and miss for me, since our room is directly across from Caleb's room, and he seems to hear our every move. Once he's up, there isn't much quiet to be had :-) What about nap time? Right now, I'm usually lying down if he's lying down, but if I get an extra spurt of energy, I've decided that choosing to spend time with the Lord is probably more beneficial for me than watching a re-run of Grey's Anatomy. I've also battled insomnia with this pregnancy. Weird, huh? You would think I'd crash as soon as I hit the pillow, but I feel like my brain is too full right now! If I wake up in the middle of the night, it can be a wonderful time to have a few quiet moments with the Lord. Whenever you do it, try your best to make it happen. Not out of duty, but out of desire for a peace that only He can provide. On the days when my spiritual bucket is empty, I'm not as successful as I would like to be at all/any of my jobs. When we take the time to stand in relationship with Him, He takes the time to bless us with a sweeter attitude, a multitude of patience, and seemingly more hours to complete life. Take it from me, when I neglect intentional time with Him, the rest of my day pays the price. Get creative, and feel free to comment about the time of day that you spend with Him!

Speaking of the Lord helping us through our days, I ran across a precious verse the other day...

"He tends His flock like a shepherd; He gathers the lambs in His arms and carries them close to His heart; He gently leads those that have young." Isaiah 40:11

This verse melted my heart! He gently leads those that have young speaks directly to each of us, as mothers. He is right here. He created us to bring these tiny little souls into this world, and He takes joy in guiding us through these early (and later!) years of motherhood. Spend some time with him each day, so that you may allow Him to lead you in guiding your young. Just a little snippet of a verse to make you smile today. I hope it comforts you :-) Until next time...

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Get Over the Guilt!

Good morning, mommies! It feels great to be back! So much has happened since my last post on June 4, and I am more than excited to get back into the full swing of things, including my writings :-) The biggest news is that Baby #2 is still happily growing in my belly...16 weeks and counting!

The nausea has started to subside, but...oh my. Let me just say that there is a reason our sweet Lord makes babies so cute and cuddly. Their preciousness quickly erases our minds of the misery which ensued while the tiny miracles were under construction in the womb! I was sick with Caleb, but not like this. Not anything like this. And, if you can relate to the pregnancy sickness, you know that you're doing good to make sure everyone stays alive and somewhat fed throughout the day. Thankfully, our (now) 2-year-old is very much alive and well! And, I fervently pray that God will wipe his memory clean of his abysmal excuse for a mother over the past four months (I'm not going to dwell on it, though...more on that below!). To give an update on our little is a latest fave:

He is precious beyond words these days, but don't be totally fooled by the innocent look. He is a handful! My coming-back-to-the-land-of-the-living post isn't the place to elaborate on his latest behaviors, attitudes, and shock-worthy feats, but we'll get there :-) And thankfully, I'm sure he is a huge factor in keeping my baby weight at an all-time low in this pregnancy! He doesn't stop unless he's sleeping.

Since my last post, we sold our previous home, moved into our new home, and then dealt with a slew of problems related to purchasing a home built in 1924. I'm not even joking, mommies...there were several days where I threatened my husband with the option of moving into a Holiday Inn until we could get the messes under control in this new house! I'm talking leaky roofs, spiders as big as your face (okay, not really...but they were BIG!), one broken appliance after the next, bathrooms that smell like campgrounds no matter how much you scrub them, broken door handles, a skunk infestation, and a myriad of other shenanigans. Needless to say, our gift from God came with a few challenges :-)  We have lived here for about six weeks, and things are finally starting to calm down. And as my first trimester symptoms have started to wane, I am better equipped to handle the issues. Eventually, this will be our dream house. Right now...we're in transition!

Before I conclude (thank you, Jesus, for letting my cherub sleep in on this rainy morning!), I want to encourage each of you to not wallow in feelings of guilt. Guilt is defined as:
  • a feeling of responsibility or remorse for some offense, crime, wrong, etc., whether real or imagined.

I have had major guilt in my heart, really since we decided to list our house in April. Guilt that I was being a bad mom as I busily prepared to list a house and find a house. Then, guilt that I was a bad mom after finding out we were pregnant and immediately setting up camp in the bathroom, thereby removing any chance of doing fun and educational activities with my little man. Guilt that I was a bad wife for not keeping up with the house and taking great care of my husband. Guilt that I was a bad mom to our second child for taking every prescription in the pharmacy to help me get through the day. Guilt as I dropped the ball on my responsibilities with my mommy ministry at church. Guilt as I said "no" time and time again to playdates and friendship-building outings. Guilt as I would forego my quiet time so as to get a few extra minutes of sleep each morning. Guilt as I watched my husband move box after box from one house to the next, as I was put on strict limitations due to bleeding. Guilt as I hired someone to clean my home, since the smell of cleaning products sent me through the roof. And...guilt as day after day went by and I was not sitting here, writing to all of you and to myself. It's not that God hasn't given me great topics to mull over and share with all of you. It's simply that I couldn't find the minutes in the day, or the strength, to get here. But...quite recently, the Lord has shown me that guilt is not from Him. Kindergarten lesson, huh? However, I'm sure you can relate to the fact that we all need a kindergarten lesson once in awhile. He is not the giver of guilt, shame, or regret. He is the Giver of just the opposite. He accepts us right where we are. He isn't angry with me because I haven't blogged. In fact, I feel like He has said, "Well done, my daughter. This has been a trying season, and you have done your best." 

Mommies, be at peace when you have done your best. It certainly won't mean that all is done, you look amazing, your kids are perfect, your husband is totally happy, and you can flit around saying how "beautiful and alive" you feel during your pregnancy (um...can I just say that if you do feel that way during your pregnancies, please don't talk to me until this child is out of my belly!). "Doing our best" is subjective to the day. What is He asking you to do today? A to-do list a mile long for which the energy you do not have? Take a few minutes, ask Him to guide your steps today, and complete what is set in front of you. Call out the guilt for what it is, ask Him to remove it, and go on with your day...even if it simply includes lying on the floor and pushing trains around the room for your toddler to chase :-) Thanks for reading, sweet friends. It's good to be back!