My husband doesn’t know it, but I’ve been sitting in front of the TV all morning watching the terrible images of the Oklahoma Tornado. I can’t imagine wondering if I will ever find my child buried beneath the rubble. I can’t imagine it all being stripped from me, in an unexpected moment because of wind and rain. I can’t imagine… Did you know that the winds were so fierce they stripped the bark off of trees. But the trees were left standing–rooted. Being rooted in Christ, I feel like our family is that tree, and no matter what we’ve been through, we are still standing. And because of that, we have to do something.
Everything in me is ready to pack and start the 20 hour drive to Moore, OK. But every doubt and question and reason not to is flooding my head. My attachment to stuff and my worry about money and bills keeps my feet planted. And for the record: I HATE IT!
This can’t be how Jesus intends for us to live our lives. Unable to help, to reach out to those in need, because of stuff. I can’t imagine He desired for us to be so comfortable that it hinders, and pretty much enables us to feed the poor, help the needy, love the broken. More and more I resent this life I’ve created for myself and my kids. This life of stuff and materialism. This world of work hard at a job you may or may not like, that may or may not be your God given gifts to buy more stuff, and bigger houses, that you absolutely do not need…that with a little wind and rain, can be taken in moments.
So I’m concocting this plan…to leave. I believe that going to Oklahoma could change our family, our lives, and my marriage. I believe that going to Oklahoma will ignite a passion for people in my children. I believe that going to Oklahoma will deepen my families faith in a way that we will never be able to be at this place again. I believe going to Oklahoma will further the kingdom, and help a family believe in Jesus who never knew Him before. I believe I want to go…I believe we need to go. In order to go, I’m going to need to raise the money to prove to my slumbering husband how serious I am. I am praying that God is speaking to him in his dreams right now, and I’m praying that by the time he wakes up my plan will be in full swing, and he will be unable to say No.
Will you donate? I don’t need pledges, I need the cash! Can you give? Will you give? I’m thinking we would need anywhere from $1500-$2000 to stay a week, have money for gas and food and be able to freely give to those in need. I will be taking photos and documenting our trip, so you know I’m not trying to swindle you! Help me get my plan in motion, and so I can be completely convincing when my husband awakens. I don’t think my blue eyes alone are going to get me this one.
He looked up at me with his big brown eyes, “Mom, will you color with me?” Who can say no to a sick kid with brown eyes? Not this mom. So we spread out the crayons and self-containing paint brushes and smelly makers. (Score! Remember when smelly markers were the coolest thing ever? And only the coolest teachers had them? Well, now WE have them, so if that makes me cool, then so be it.)
After drawing a few hearts and flowers I started this project. Dots. Small dots. Lots of dots. Dots that take forever.
By the 11th red dot, I was over it. As I was entering into my time machine, transporting myself back to the days of rainbow bright and unicorns, these dots reminded me of how much I HATE hate hate process. Before I even started this little piece of art, I envisioned the finished project. But actually doing the work is a whole other cup of tea.
I hate process. There. I confess. But I made myself finish. And the whole time, I felt the pain of Jesus trying to turn that switch on my heart. And it’s not a flip switch. It’s a turn-one (and yes, that’s the official and proper name for it). By the time I picked up the yellow (lemon) marker I was pushing myself to the finish line. Trying to enjoy every dot, every size, every moment of creativity. In order for me to learn to love the journey, I have to take myself on the journey, over and over, I have to walk that road.
So today I forced myself down another road, to teach me to enjoy the process. And I hated almost every minute of it.
I loved the finish product but by the time I sanded the first plank, I had to remind myself of the beauty of the journey. That there are moments of frustration, and moments you have to force yourself through. Even when you don’t feel like it, you have to take one more step. And each “one more step” brings you closer to the end.
I’ve decided that I will regularly push myself to learn how to enjoy the journey. Even if it’s forcing myself to make colored dots on a piece of paper, I will force myself out of my comfortable, and sometimes unproductive bubble. If I want God to teach me something new, I have to do things differently than I’ve done before. Are you willing to do the same ?
You Are Loved,
She’s finally driving. My daughter turned 15 nine months ago and I finally talked her into getting her permit. She has no intentions of using it, well not often anyway. I pretty much make her drive, or make it sound exciting enough that she wants to. Then she starts down the road, stresses at every light and turn and hates it…every minute of it. She is likely to have a heart attack by 17 if she continues at this pace.
I was emphasizing the importance of a turn signal and when to use it. “Yes, even if you are in a turn lane, you need to have your blinker on.” Followed by the question, “How exactly DID you get your permit?”
Answered with, “The questions were about towing vehicles. I’m not thinking I’m going to tow a vehicle with my car anytime soon. Anytime. Ever. And if I’m in a turn lane, then everyone should know I’m turning.”
Driving boils down to awareness. I need to be aware of what is happening around me, and I need to make people aware of what I’m doing and what my intentions are. Awareness is such an overused term these days. We have “awareness” (and ribbons) for every issue, every disease, every plight, every personal issue, every tick, every fingernail broken. We want everyone to be aware of everything.
All the while, Jesus wants us to be aware of him. Our relationship with him boils down to awareness. We need to be aware of what Jesus is doing around us, and we need to make people aware of what Jesus is doing with us and through us. Our ribbon is how we live our life. It’s pretty much that simple.
I love how when I’m teaching my daughter to drive (and I say that knowing you realize it’s more me screaming and gasping)…that Jesus is teaching me more about Him and His purpose for all humanity. It’s how He rolls.
Are you aware of Him today?
Know then in your heart that as a man disciplines his son, so the Lord your God disciplines you. Deuteronomy 8:5
I am, on all levels, an every day ordinary girl. My nails always crack and my polish is always chipped. I love hitting the snooze button but hate bedtime. I leave drawers and cabinet doors ajar because I hate the sound of them closing, and it drives my very military husband insane. Sometimes I yell at my kids, and hide in the bathroom. I’m always late. Always.
I am ordinary. And so was Amos. Amos bred sheep–I breed sheep or kids, either one. Amos tended to the fruit of the sycamore tree. I tend to my little fruit loops and often am sick-of-more and more of their antics (ha ha, see what I did there). Amos was not from any priestly or noble decent. Even though at times I think I am some sort of princess, I’m just a girl from Texas. Amos was an everyday ordinary guy, and God used him. I like to think that God uses me.
During the time that God gave Amos a message to share, The Northern Kingdom of Israel was rockin’. They were in a place of economic prosperity. There was a sense of security and peace among the people and the nations. Times were good yet the people were smug about God’s favor. However, God was not happy because a midst their seemingly perfect world was a people dedicated to “moral decay and spiritual corruption.”
We all look at our families like that sometimes. Read More