Thursday, November 19, 2009

Let's Get Personal Part 1

Yesterday I received a question from a non-real life bloggy friend. She wondered if it was weird for her to ask a serious question to a person you've never actually met but feel like you know via bloggy world. And my answer, without a doubt is nope. Not weird at all. I love blog questions. Makes me feel like someone is actually listening to what I'm saying...which is a good portion of the reason I blog. Because in my real life, it can often feel like no one is paying attention. :)

Before I get to the question, I'm gonna put a disclaimer on this post. I hate disclaimers, they somehow seem like an apology for whatever is being said in order to not offend anyone in the slightest. But sometimes they are with every other single thing ever written on this blog, this is just my personal story. I without a doubt, believe that God's plan for everyone's family size is completely different. And the journey He takes them on, and what He asks of them is each unique. There's no simple 3-step formula for everyone.

Finally...question - Did you know that you knew that you knew that you wanted another baby?

In Short: No.

The truth is, the closer I grow to Christ, the less confident I am in what I want. This drives me crazy, but it is actually a very, very good thing. There have been many things that I was certain I wanted at one time, only to completely change my mind later. And on the flip side, there were certain things I never wanted, that have turned out to have been the desire of my heart after all.

That sounds neat and tidy, doesn't it? I wish it were that simple. But the road to that conclusion was not not easy.

About a year and a half ago Ben and I began to struggle with what it meant, for us, to give control over to God regarding the size of our family. For quite awhile we'd had a peace about how we were going about things...and then...the feeling of unrest settled in. We weighed the options.

The problem, for me especially...because I have control-freak tendency, was that all the options made me feel like I was the one in control, when I really just wanted God to make the decision.

In my head, these were the options:
  • Decide if we are done having kids or not. If we are done, then someone should get fixed. When? Who? (Some finger pointing went on here ;)
  • Do we just go about our current method which was trying to prevent, while yet still leaving an option open for God to do what He wants?
  • Do we do nothing to prevent? There was a joke going around when Ben was in seminary, because everyone was having babies. What do you call a husband and wife who do not use birth control? Answer: Parents. And by my experience, that was TRUE. So, for me, not using anything meant trying...which meant I still felt like I was taking the decision into my own hands.
I begged God to JUST PICK AN OPTION and then let me know which one He'd like. I asked friends about their journey. Each story was unique and it helped to know that others were in the same struggle...whether they already had 1,2, or 10 kids.

Have I mentioned I don't like uncertainty? I want things decided. It wasn't until I surrendered to the fact that it wasn't going to be decided that the peace started to come. I had thought the lesson for me was to find out what option was best, when in reality the lesson was for Ben and I to surrender to uncertainty.

This was a hard lesson for me. And really, I'd like to leave the rest of the story and details out. Sharing parts of my life, and keeping it real come pretty easily for me. But, you may notice that often I talk in more general terms...leaving details out protects me and those around me. I can keep it real and still keep a sense of privacy. It works well for me. But I know on this topic, God has brought me on this journey for a reason, and I'm gonna share the rest of it with you...

Tomorrow. Because I've reached my self imposed blog length limit for the day.

Details. Because in this case, God is glorified in the details.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

My Ideal...

There are two of me. Sort of.

There's ideal Sarah and real Sarah.

Each night as real Sarah crawls into bed she plans what ideal Sarah is going to do differently tomorrow.

Ideal Sarah is going to get her butt out of bed at 5:30 AM (and she'll be happy about it) and she'll immediately get on the treadmill for 45 minutes. When she's done, she'll start the coffee pot (which is not still filled with old coffee from yesterday because ideal Sarah cleans up everything before she goes to bed) and then she'll head up to take a shower and get herself ready for the day. Ideal Sarah even picks out something cute to wear with accessories.

She then heads downstairs while all her boys are still sleeping. She pours herself a cup of coffee and grabs a seat on the couch to spend some time with her Savior, because ideal Sarah never forgets how much she needs Him.

When she's finished, she starts making a breakfast that does not consist of the options of cereal, oatmeal or toast. Ideal Sarah does not raise her voice when she has to tell her children for the 500th time that morning to get themselves ready. She doesn't forget to send the lunch money check and she certainly gets them to school with lots of time to spare.

Ideal Sarah always appreciates that she gets to be a stay at home mom. She never wastes time on trivial things, but goes about her day efficiently completing all that needs to be done.

She plans meals. Enjoys working on homework with her children and at the end of the night, she always takes her make-up off, brushes and flosses before ever thinking of crawling into bed. She's never too tired. Did I mention she also never throws stuff off the bed onto the floor?

Real Sarah despises ideal Sarah. Because even though ideal Sarah does not exist, real Sarah still wants her too...for some reason.

PS - Ideal Sarah also never buys a pound of crab salad and finishes it herself. She would never do that.

Friday, November 13, 2009

It's Personal...

I'm in session 5 of Beth Moore's Daniel study. God has used this study to challenge me beyond words. I haven't blogged on it much because it is so personal, so close to my heart that I need it to just stay there for awhile.

This morning, something Beth wrote hit me hard.

For some, the flow of the world can be easier to resist than the flow of Christian mediocrity.

I struggle with both. Until this study, I didn't realize how much the attitudes of my culture are just a part of me. Even more so, how the attitudes of other Christians around me affect me.

Beth says...

We abide in our subgroups by unspoken codes dictating how far we'll go in our devotion to God. Anyone who goes overboard or takes it too seriously is considered eccentric, not extraordinary.
The truth is, worldly individuals already think I've lost my mind. I came to understand that very, very early in my Christian experience. I get that...I understand that. I can handle that. After all, why wouldn't they think I was a little strange?

What I seem to never get used to is the backlash that sometimes comes from fellow believers during the times in my life that Christ has called me to be different. I can be going about my business, quite happy and content and then God goes and grabs my heart again with something like this Daniel study. And during those times...He requires something different of me. Requires a change.

I've learned that sometimes other believers view my changes as judgement on them. And often, I've wrongly viewed other's changes as judgement on me.

And they're not.

I do have a point to this incessant rambling, I'll try to find it...recently God has convicted the parsonage family that it's time for us to do something different in one particular area. It has nothing to do with how anyone else does this particular thing. He's just calling us to it differently for now, and we can either obey what He's asking and risk being viewed as the weirdos, or we can maintain our norm and just go with the way we've always done it.

But only one way leads to obedience for us.

At the end of each day, I want to be the Christian that is an encouragement to the person who tells me God is convicting them and they want to change. I want to rejoice with them when God calls them to something radical. I want to encourage them to trust and follow even when it seems crazy. I don't want to get in the way of what God is doing in someone elses life...I want to cheer them on instead.

I am so thankful for those people in my life that have cheered us on when God called us to something that seemed crazy at the time. And I'm especially thankful for those who've set the example before me, living out a radical faith.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

For the Life of Me I Can't...

Something has happened to me.

For some odd reason I am unable to make simple decisions. It is driving me crazy. CRAZY. I'm normally the gal who knows what she likes. But lately...not so much.

I hem and haw (wow, I say that all the time but it looks really weird when I write it...) over the most trivial things. It annoys me to death when people can't make simple decisions...and now I'm one of them.

And because I can't get away from myself, it's taken annoying to a whole new level. It takes me twice as long to grocery shop, pick something for supper, make plans, and even get dressed in the morning. And when I do finally make a decision, I end up doubting it.

You know what one does when they can't decide...nothing. I just wait and wait and wait thinking I'll soon be able to choose...and I don't. I just put it off a little longer.

I'm sure there's a spiritual lesson in it somewhere. I'm just still stuck in the "what the heck happened to me, bring back the Sarah who can make decisions" stage. Once I get passed it (and it may take awhile) I'll be sure to fill you in.

In the mean time...should I hit Publish Post or not? Did I mention it's annoying?

Monday, November 9, 2009

I Have No Point...

Because I can't narrow it down to a point....

  • I have been watching a ridiculous amount of football. And generally, every team I'm rooting for...loses. I like the Packers, because my oldest son Noah likes the Packers. Last night I was rooting for the Cowboys because my brother loves them...and they won. Next week the Packers play the Cowboys, and because it is against my nature to remain neutral I must pick a side. I'm gonna go with the Pack. See, I told's gotten out of hand people.
  • My same little brother who likes the Cowboys (who I call little, but he's actually almost 21 years old...but to my almost 32 years it makes him little) was dealt a blow this past week. He found out that he is diabetic. Very diabetic. It sorta came outta no where, with no family history...and so he's adjusting. And because I'm his big sister, and pregnant, I did my share of crying for him...because giving up the something to cry about.
  • I am very much on the verge of getting some Christmas decor out...just the greenery and lights...maybe. I love Thanksgiving, I do. I love it even more when I celebrate it with Christmas decor ;)
  • I am very annoyed with my pants that won't stay up. It's only gonna get worse as my belly gets bigger. I'm thinking it's time to bring suspenders back. Wait, I take that back. I don't' think suspenders were ever in to begin with...let's start it.
  • I am utterly and completely annoyed with our House of Representatives. Praying the Senate has some more sense.
  • I finished the book Methland this weekend. I can't even tell you how disturbing it was. Made me want to crawl back into the bubble I live know, with shiny happy people holding that song is gonna be in my head all day. Hate when that happens.
I think that's enough random for one day.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Good Questions and Yummy Donuts...

Man this picture makes me want some donuts. My love for donuts runs deep...very deep.

Moving on.

I'm joining in on the fun with Linda over at 2nd Cup. I think all of my readers probably already know Linda, but it you haven't met yet, I highly recommend you take a trip over there. She's a hoot.

1. It's early morning, about 2:00AM, and you're driving home. You come to a red light and sit there. There is no one in sight for miles around. Do you wait it out or run the light?
I sit there...until I've convinced myself that the stoplight must not work properly at 2AM therefor justifying my need to go through it. And then, I think to myself *wait!* it's 2 in the morning and there are probably drunk people driving all over the place and if I break the law by going through the stoplight they will probably show up out of nowhere and crash into me. Welcome to my thought's exhausting.

2. If you had the chance to re-do the last 24 hours, would you change anything?
I might change my tall Peppermint Mocha to a grande because sometimes bigger is better.

3. When you reply to someone's comment on your blog, do you reply in your comments or go to her blog and comment? (Or email her)
It just depends. But I am not very good at following up like many people are. I'm always amazed when I leave a comment somewhere and the sweet person emails me about it. Makes me feel special... and then bad because I am not as thoughtful. I do have some good excuses though...I can email ya if you're interested. ;)

4. Your favorite Disney movie is: Aladdin and Beauty and the Beast.

5. Do you recycle?
I do! Only for the past year or so...I'm a little slow at jumping on this band wagon. I don't really enjoy it though...but I can do my part.

6. Games of strategy or games of chance?
Can I say a little of both without cheating the question? My current favorite game is Dutch Blitz. It's a card game with Amish people on it. And I think it involves both strategy and chance...that being said, I am very annoyed that my husband beats me at it 80% of the time.

7. Do you have any recurring dreams?
YES. I keep dreaming that we are moving into another parsonage. Still the same church, just moving us to a different house. Anyways, the houses are big old houses and in the dream I'm trying to figure out where I'll put everything and who will sleep in each room and then I'm trying to figure out what colors to paint all the while I'm wishing I could just go back to my small house where I don't have to worry about any of that.

8. What did you learn from your first real job?
I'm gonna count babysitting as my first real job because I was a hard-core babysitter and man was I good at it. I could keep the kids happy and safe AND clean their kitchen to boot. I was in high demand. I learned to multi-task with kiddos around. Too bad I don't have my 15 year old energy to keep me going these days.

9. Do you buy or borrow most books?
I think I borrow most books. I've just recently started using our little library on a regular basis. I've gotten over my bad habit of not returning books so now it's not quite as scary :) Just yesterday I checked out this book. I KNOW! I saw the author on The Today show and this town in the book is in our general area. My step dad grew up there and we have a good pastor friend who is now pastoring there. I think it will open my eyes to my own tiny town too. I'll let ya know more about it once I pass page 15.

10. What fashion trend of the past did you say you'd never wear again but did?
Pretty much all of them. I tend to eat the word never whenever I use it.

11. When do you start Christmas shopping?
Not until December. It's all about atmosphere for me.

12. Have you ever been so happy that you literally jumped up and down for a few seconds? If so, what was the occasion?
Yes. It usually involves me clapping too. For some reason they just go together.

Go over to Linda's to join in on the fun!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


Just for the heck of it, I took some pictures yesterday and today. Something I haven't done in quite awhile...

I thought I'd document my increasing belly/decreasing lap. At 15 1/2 weeks the lap still wins.

And the baby bump...

And the purple shoes that I've rekindled that loving feeling for recently...

And a new hair cut that was loooong over due thanks to nausea and barfing...

It's good to feel somewhat normal again. Well, maybe normal is a bad choice of's good to feel like me again.

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