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Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Straight Paths On a Winding Road

Proverbs 3: 5-6

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.

A common passage, used often, read often.  Understood fully?  For me, not until this time in my life.  I do not understand all that has gone on in my life these past two months.  I understand that I'm not in control and I had no power to change or prevent what has become of my life and marriage. But I do know this, because of that powerlessness and that lack of understanding, I have no choice but to stop trying to control the outcomes.  I simply trust.  I say, "God, do with me what you will.  Heal me how you see fit.  I know your way is the only way for things to ever be right again, however that is supposed to look."  And amazingly, He is making my paths straight.  Other versions of the Bible say, "...and He will direct your paths."  He is definately directing, but I love the idea of Him not just directing me, but Him actually straightening out the mess of my life and unbending the crooked roads,  straightening my path all along the way.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

2012 - A New Year

My life is abundantly blessed. I am completely and utterly amazed that I have the life I have. At the same time I am completely and utterly aware that it can all be gone in an instant, in a moment, all that is right and perfect in my world can go spinning out of my grasp and out of my life. It's scary to think about that, losing the three most important people in my life. I do though. I think about it a lot.

It seems as though all around me people are losing those they hold close. It happens way too often and way more than it used to. Is it because I'm older? Is it because my friends and family are older? Is it because the world is much worse off than it used to be?

Whatever the reason, it is life. And in this life there is death.

2011 has been a year filled with death, cancer, and heartbreaking loss for people I love. I pray for them the peace that passes understanding and the assurance that beauty rises out of the ashes. I don't know how to help them except to just be present, present in the pain and to pray.


Friday, September 30, 2011

Let the Children Come

A little girl, age 8, and a boy, age 11, lost their mother. Pain. Sadness. Unbearable. Beth, the mom, battled pancreatic cancer for 11 months before it took her life. Cancer. Thief. Killer. A disease that ravages the body by both nature and cure. Not easy. Not right. Not fair.
There's just not much good to say about it...or is there? See, that's the amazing thing! There is so much good that comes from the difficulty, the wrongness, the unfairness of it all. Does it still hurt? Absolutely. But is there good? Definitely. Sometimes you have to look for it. Sometimes it's right there in front of you.
So, my daughter is 8 as well and because of this I get to hang out with the little girl mentioned above. I was with her Saturday. I was with her Wednesday. I am with her now. I can't really put into words the way I feel when I look at her. It's almost as if I'm searching for glimpses into her soul and I can't really get over the fact that inside her (and outside her) are pieces of her mother, whom I miss very much.
What I can express though, is the life she brings to her surroundings. That she and her brother are good things in the midst of all the darkness. When I watch them, I see a strength that only comes from faith. Jesus said let them come. Beth and her husband, Dave, took them and sat with them at the feet of the Savior. And because of this, though they've been handed this awful tragic experience they will breathe life, love, and Jesus into others. They will find and be good and light in all this darkness.
So when they come, watch them and you will see it too.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

What's the Good In This?

Okay, so on our first day of in-service this year we watched a little movie made by a guy named Dewitt Jones. He was a photographer for National Geographic. The movie is super motivational and I haven't been able to get it out of my mind. (Thankfully). He uses his experience as a photographer to teach this simple yet powerful message...What good do you see in every situation? It's simple yes and very common sense, but how often do we go that route. I have more often than not been very easily pulled into the black hole of negativity and just kept myself sinking deeper and deeper into it by focusing on all the things that were wrong or bad. It takes one little shift in thinking to make a difference you'll notice the rest of your day.
I say all this to say that each day of this week I've had a bad start. Usually when my day starts bad it's a downhill spiral of which I can't get off. But this week, a small thought kept creeping into my conscience asking me to find the good in the situation...What's good about it? In wracking my brain to find the "good", it totally took my focus off the bad even if I couldn't find much good. It's been a good switch and has kept me from talking and harping about bad situations. There really is good in all things...even if the good is not immediate, it's there, under the rubble and beneath the smoke, there, waiting to be grasped if only we reach for it.

Friday, August 5, 2011

The Lighthouse and the Parent

Lighthouses stand guard all along jagged and malicious coastlines. Waves churn and beat time with the wind. All around the tower of light is danger. Sometimes the danger rolls in quietly with the fog, others it announces itself with fury, while still others it is just there, the nature of the landscape. It can not afford to not pay attention. It can not wait to provide its protection and it can not assume it is doing enough by just being there. It has to go ahead of the danger. It has to shine before the danger is too near. It has to be watchful, guarding, and persistent as it guides its ships to safety.
In the same way as a parent, I am a lighthouse...not to ships, but to my children. I too must be vigilant. I too must be watchful. I too must be looking ahead for harm. The world offers dangers more treacherous than any coastline. Satan doesn't always do his work with arrogance that spews, "In your face!" Sometimes he slips in softly to the simple and the mundane and the ordinary. And just when you forget to turn on the light of protection, the damage is done.


Thankfully if you are Christ's, it doesn't end there.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

What a Wonderful Life

I am amazed by all the blessings God has given me. Amazed because of the goodness and because I'm so undeserving of it all.
The other day I was driving home from somewhere and as I looked out at the bright blue sky and the billowing white clouds, I was overcome with the greatness that is my life. I felt "joy unspeakable and full of glory" as the old hymn goes. I feel that a lot. And yet, I can look back over my life and count the many whom my husband, Chad and I have lost:

James Moore - my dad
Ricky Sewell - my stepbrother
Erna T Moore - my paternal grandmother
Jason Arrington - my brother-in-law, Chad's twin
Sam Daderio - his step-grandfather
Jim Justus - his uncle
Jewell Hallonquist - my maternal grandmother
Bill Arrington - his paternal grandfather
JD Hallongquist - my maternal grandfather
Tommy Currey - friend/Chad's cousin, brother of my best friend
Buck Ethington - his uncle
Joe Hollinquest - my favorite uncle (mom's side)
Sherry O'Donnell - my favorite and only aunt (dad's side)
Bobby Sewell - my stepdad.
Carline Currey - friend/Chad's aunt, mother of my best friend

My dad and stepbrother passed away before Chad and I were married, but the rest we've gone through together, side by side, and hand in hand. And I could write on and on about crazy circumstances that surrounded many of their passings...from pregnancies and our babies being born to anniversaries and losing grandparents within hours of each other. Each person on that list meant a lot to us in different ways and for different reasons and each made an impact on our lives.
They also represent times in our lives that have not been easy. Which is why I am not only amazed at my life but that I have been given the understanding to see through all the clouds to better days ahead. That I can be full of joy at all that I've been given - from my beautiful children to the bed I lay down in each night. That amazes me too. Where else does that come from but God?
I am because He is and I can because He does.
I don't know how people deal with death and hard times without Jesus. We all face troubles and there is no promise of relief. No promise of earthly protection against hard times. But praise God there is more and we can live with hope and we can die with hope. I am thankful for my life...good times and bad for they've made me who I am and will continue to shape me into who I will be.

Thank you Lord for those I've loved. I miss them!
Thank you Lord for those I love. I enjoy them!
Thank you Lord for those I will love. I look forward to them. Amen

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Need to Blog More

I wish that I had a job that allowed me to spend an hour each morning on the web. I'd like to think I'd spend that time updating my blog and checking in on other's blogs. I just don't ever have the time to do this daily or even weekly like I'd like. Maybe when the baby is born and I'm sitting around the house some I'll find time to make it a habit.
So, until I become a better blogger, I will continue to just do this occassionally.

On a different note, I'm exactly 17 days from my due date. I have been having Braxton Hicks contractions since Friday, but there are no other signs of baby being ready to come into this world yet. I go to the doc tomorrow afternoon and am hoping for some signs of labor. Last Monday they said it was going to be a "big" baby, and that scares me some. Jay was 6 lbs 15 oz and was so so easy. Monday, the sonogram lady said the baby was 7 lbs. 9 oz. She said if the baby goes to the due date, it will probably be around 8.5 lbs!

So, we wait.