April 26, 2008

Like No Other Son

“My A . . .” is what you called yourself as a baby. You’ve always known who you were. Big brother "J" would go left, you would go right. "J" would go right; you would go left, because you knew you were "A . . ."!

In the middle of adventures you were the shepherd-brother-hero. You kept an eye on little sister and held her when she cried, you showed little brother how to stick Lego’s together, and you gave "J" some great game ideas – all at the same time.

I’m fishing around in my head tonight to find words, and because I’ve been scrutinizing words most of the day – new ones aren’t coming to me easily. (I’m in the middle of a proofing project.)

What I would really like is to look into your eyes, again; and try to decide what color they are, again. I’d like to wrap my arm around your neck, and tell you “happy birthday”. I would love to watch you play with your son and adore your wife. Instead I am sitting here late at night trying to pull up some words.

When I get myself in a stew, or become anxious and confused about my life, I often hear God asking me, “What do you want?” Usually it’s when I’m swimming around in a meaningless prayer, but trying (again) to find the right words. When I decide to listen, I can hear Him: “Kathy, what do you want?”

A silent pause.

I’m thinking.

“Lord, I want you.” It just all boils down to “Lord, I want you.”

My list is long, otherwise. (It would be great to see your family, for one; and money in the bank would be nice.) There are a lot of “wants”, but this is the sum of them all. In Him there is perfect rest, and in “I want you” there is perfect worship!

I love you, my wonderful son. As long as I am able to speak, you’ll hear me say that. God didn’t make a man more outstanding than you. There’s no such thing! I keep trying to express it, but words are never really enough . . .

Have an awesome week celebrating the years that He has given you.
from Mom

April 20, 2008

I Am Allowed to Stare At Him

I am allowed to stare at him.
I am his mother.
I admire the man he is.
His was the soft little fuzzy head, my infant son,
that I cradled on my arm
and caressed with my hand.

He doesn’t know how my eyes
are adoring his profile,
following the line from the top of his forehead
to his chin - so familiar to me.

I watch him handle his instrument,
engrossed in his craft.
He is unaware
of the power of the love I have for him.

Because the emotion is screwing up my face,
I have to divert my eyes
and distract my thoughts.
If I look any longer, I’ll embarrass myself
in this public place;
but maybe that would be okay.

I turn my eyes to my child’s child,
dozing on his mother’s shoulder;
his fuzzy head hanging limp.
How beautiful the pride of motherhood looks on her
– who is carrying another child I cannot see.
Thank you, Lord, for joy in my motherhood!

+ + + + + + + + + + +
Perched in the choir near my husband and daughter, I could observe my son on his guitar. What a blessed woman I am, to stand and worship God in this place - with my family!

April 16, 2008

Nothing Like Being a Mom

Simply put, I was made to be a mom.

After I married my husband in 1978, I discovered that my history of job descriptions all added up. I was meant to be a mom. Following high school I worked as a dishwasher, child care provider, cook, teachers’ aide, sandwich maker, and building maintenance worker. My free time was spent in Bible study, singing and playing guitar, outdoor adventures and journaling.

My faith, which I also call my “self-talk”, said that if God created my body to bear and nurture children, then he must have intended me to be a Mom. Out of respect for his design, I must say that he did a complete work; therefore the next step in my reasoning faith was to say “I can do it, because he designed me to”. Because of his loving creative power, I would see tremendous success, enjoyment, and satisfaction in this. Besides these reasonings, my desire for motherhood was strong (second only to my desire for a godly marriage).

Sure enough, when my first child was born – I knew my calling. I was made to bear and raise and teach and lead my children! There was no doubt that this would require my almost continual presence in the home. Like Jesus, who lived with, walked with, slept near, shared meals with, and talked with his disciples on a daily basis, I committed myself to “being there”.

My faith also caused me to say “if I follow his design, he will make the way”. My personality strengths include creativity and independence. These gave me the power to stand out in a crowd, to be more than what was considered normal for my time. I stayed home.

I encouraged myself that as my children saw the real me – with all my own needs and shortcomings, they would realize how much I relied on God’s presence and strength every day. The disciples of Jesus saw him heal. They saw him weep. They saw him suffer abuse, and they saw his love endure all things. They worshipped with him. They heard his voice, and they learned of his correction and his anger. They saw miraculous provision. They came to know God.

As a mom I could express my creative nature and choose to drop my duties on a whim, in order to engage in all-out play. I could capture a teaching moment as it came by me, like Jesus did when he pointed out an unfruitful fig tree on the path and taught his disciples a life lesson. I had the power as a stay-home mom to reorganize my plans for the day when a child was sick. When one of the children started singing, we could all bust out in unplanned worship. How could a mom do these things if she weren't there?

The heartfelt hugs, the pockets full of bugs, the off-the-wall questions, throwing rocks in mud puddles, the giggles – even the whining, all had their place. The challenges of growing and learning . . . . There’s nothing like being a mom!

April 11, 2008

Arthroscopic Surgery Still HURTS!

He is sure that he was told he'd need his crutches only 2-3 days, then he'd be on his feet. Like he says, "that ain't happenin'!" My husband had knee surgery Tuesday, and today he's going a bit stir-crazy (Friday). Apart from the pain and stiffness, his backside is just tired of being sat on! His head is weary with watching videos.

Acquaintences who have had arthroscopic surgery have said that it's far easier to recover from, and less painful, than conventional surgeries. Perhaps the medical personnel were just giving him a rosy "best case scenario", so he wouldn't be fretful before the procedure. Maybe he just heard the information differently than I would have, had I been there. I dunno . . .

It's just not going the way he had expected.

April 9, 2008

Strengthen My Frugaltude

Frugaltude

It means an "attitude of frugality". A strong word, like the word "fortitude". I want to strengthen this quality, so here are my thoughts on it:

Being content with little, delaying satisfaction for greater pleasure at a later time.

Enjoying simple pleasures in life NOW. Anticipating simple pleasures growing in scope, duration, or value LATER.

Like fertile seeds that we've been given or have harvested ourselves; some we eat, some we share, and some we put in the ground to harvest later.

The picture I see in my mind is of a woman in Africa scooping up spilled rice in the dirt, to sift out later in the privacy of her home. She works quickly, fingering the individual grains of rice and putting them in her basket. She may be poor, or she may just have frugaltude! Perhaps she can offer some of her recovered rice to a missionary pastor, or invite a hungry friend to a meal to share the gospel with her . . .

One aspect of my frugaltude is to avoid going into any kind of debt at almost all costs! Debt robs me of my "tude" of contentment. I may be practicing frugality, but it's not fun if I have debt!

I have been contemplating this word for about a week now, and it makes sense to me. It's an attitude I've cultivated over my adult years; at times becoming an obsession, but usually balanced and enjoyable. I've never heard it before, but I think I'll use it now!

Strengthen your frugaltude, young lady!

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