Monday, April 29, 2013

Ironic...

So.  Last week I wrote this post on Words.  And then on Friday I got a call from my First Grade son's teacher about his choice of words.

Irony.

Oh Jake.  

Ben and I like to joke that Jake is (almost) 8 going on 80.  Like a grumpy old man in a young little body.  He's not easily amused or impressed, and on any given day he's pretty easily annoyed by whatever and whomever. And his "filter" is, well...we're working on that.  

It's just one of his quirks.  I like quirks in people, it's what makes us, us.  That being said, the kids has some great qualities too...and dimples.  Dimples are like my kryptonite.  All he has to do is smile... 

At school on Friday one of Jake's classmates declared that it was going to be a great weekend, which Jake then replied something to the effect of "I hope you have the worst weekend ever."  

When his teacher repeated what he said to me, I couldn't help but wish he'd been using some sarcasm...but he hadn't.  Jake was annoyed, and blurted what popped in his head.  

As I sat Jake down that afternoon to talk about it, I said that part of maturing was thinking about what we say before we say it.  Filter 101.   So we ask ourselves, Is this kind?  Is this helpful?

And in the back of my brain God is whispering, do you hear yourself?

And as a parent, I was disappointed that he chose those words...but I've also been there.  Or maybe I am there.  I'm 35 years old, and I've learned to filter thoughts when in public.  And, when you become a pastor's wife, God helps you install a double-filtration system for your tongue.  It's like a requirement. 

But at home...my filter is maybe not working so great.  I'm quick to tell the kids all the things I think they are not doing right. Without really filtering if it's kind and helpful in training them.   And I skip that part because I'm impatient and irritated

And that's not ok.

So in the parsonage, we are all working on: Is it Kind?  Is it helpful?  And guess what?

It. Is. Hard.

I was trying to explain to Jake that it's a problem we all struggle with, even grown ups.  But if we don't learn to tame our tongue we end up being rude and hurtful...and someone that people don't want to be around.  

And that got me thinking...maybe the people who don't bother to filter what they say drive me so crazy because the rest of us are doing the work to filter! The hard work.  It's like when I see people in pajama pants in public.  It's not so much that I hate the pajamas (ok, maybe I do) but that if the rest of society goes through the effort of putting on some pants, then so should they.

Wait...was that kind?  was that helpful?  Hmmm.  I'm not sure.  See, still working on that. ;)




Thursday, April 25, 2013

Never Too Late to Easter

So technically Easter Sunday is long over.  But it was so early this year (I like it later better) let's just pretend it wasn't that long ago.

Plus, I'm a Jesus Lover so every day is pretty much Easter.

Let's just do pictures. 




I ordered Lucy's dress from Target online.  I'm having her wear it to a wedding in June too.  Double duty baby.

This is Nelson, laying in the sun with a fleece sweater on...wishing his family would move farther south and out of the cold.



Real life.






Exhausted.  And yes, if you look at the chair in the background, that is indeed Lucy's artwork.  In permanent marker.  



Side note:  I FINALLY made it through the entire The Passion of the Christ movie this year.  I bawled a lot, and watched most of it from the other side of the house (because it just seemed more tolerable from farther away) but I did it.  We also had the boys watch it too, because "Jesus died on the cross for our sins" was becoming a kitchy phrase they hear us say all the time and now...not so much.

So thankful for Jesus.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Words

This is one of my favorite songs right now.

Words by Hawk Nelson


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anVweXDcxhA


(Nelson is also the name of our dog.  That's just bonus random info for you)





Words can build us up, words can tear us down.  Start a fire in our hearts or put it out. 

Let my words be life.  Let my words be truth. I don't wanna say a word unless it points the world back to you.

I wanna speak Your love not just another noise.

The song speaks some serious truth.  I'm not sure we truly realize the power we hold in our words.  I'm also not sure that Christians listen to themselves all that much.  I mean really listen to what we say in regular conversation on a daily basis.

It often reeks of selfishness, arrogance, pride, harshness and criticism.  

Let's stop doing that.  It makes us look like idiots.  

And if someone points that out to us, we are quick to defend our reasons why we are justified in it...aren't we?  Sometimes God whispers to me, do you hear yourself?  Stop it.

And sometimes I want to say to other people, do you hear yourself?  (but that generally does not go over well ;)

But in my head I'm asking it. 

The Bible is clear.  This is one of a ton of verses, the Bible is not silent on the tongue.



Proverbs 18:21

New International Version (NIV)
21 The tongue has the power of life and death,
    and those who love it will eat its fruit.

We have the power to speak life to those around us, our husbands, children, friends, family, neighbors, community and strangers.  And internet land.  

Or...we speak death.  Which is another way of saying we crush people with our words, or tone, or our blabbering on and on about whatever.

Those around us, they hear us.  Whether we want to be honest with ourselves or not is up to us.  If you are brave find someone who will be honest with you and ask them the tough questions so that you can hear what you sound like. (and then when they tell you the truth, accept it.)   

What consumes my conversations?  

Am I quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry?

Who does most of the talking in conversations?

What does my attitude generally portray about me?

Am I an encourager or do I leave people feeling drained after being around me?

Where are my sights and perspectives?  Focused on temporal or eternal?

Well, you get the idea.  Go ahead, do it.  I dare you.  When I did it the first time...it wasn't pretty.  But through God's grace the answers to those questions are changing.  

The weird thing that I didn't expect, is that some people don't want to see you change!  They view it as criticism against themselves...and/or other stuff I don't quite understand.   So I go back to this truth:  God called me from the way I was speaking, and to a way to control my tongue in order to bring life to those around me.  I didn't make it up, and I can't do it on my own.  In Him and through Him, because ultimately:  I want to walk in obedience to Christ.  Who gave His life for me.

That's it.


Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Lucy Turns 3

Saturday we celebrated Lucy's third birthday.  Well, we actually had a party for her the week before (with her cousin), which means we've totally confused her.  She has another party on May 12th.  Poor girl thinks birthdays happen at least three days a year.  


I can't even explain how much pink she has brought into our lives.

And in case you were dieing to know...no, I did not make the cake.  

Ha.











Three short years.  From this:




To This:


She is so much fun.  Happy Birthday Baby Girl.  Now it's unofficially, officially time to start potty training.  For real.  Tomorrow...

Monday, March 18, 2013

Oh I Laughed...

Last night the whole family was spread out on the couches watching our favorite Sunday night series, The Bible on the History channel.   It got to the part where Jesus is in the desert, having fasted for 40 days and Satan arrives, in the form of a snake.

And then he's in the form of a sort-of human in a black cape...and when we saw his face both Ben and I gasped and looked at each other, and as our eyes met we knew we were having the very same thought.

"Don't say it!"  I whispered at him.  I didn't want the boys to hear us and repeat it.

But sure enough, one of the boys said "Satan looks like Barack Obama!"

And they were right. Here's a link to the picture.

Now, I'm not a huge fan of the president, but I respect the office he holds...I also don't go around equating him with Satan...but I'm not gonna lie, I chuckled.  

A lot.

Today I found an article from the producers of the show, they claim he bears no resemblance.  Pffff.  Again, I chuckled.

These are the things that entertain me during the Winter That Never Ends where I live.

The End.


Monday, March 11, 2013

Life in Random

Let's Random, shall we?


  • It's March 11th and we have, yet again, another snow day.  It hurts.  Is it possible to overdose on Vitamin D supplements? In my head I keep chanting, spring is coming spring is coming spring is coming.  Because it has to.
  • Lucy is going to be three next month.  Wow.  She loves Dora, Strawberry Shortcake and most recently:  Spiderman.  I love being home with her...even on the days that she makes me crazy.  
  • I have a new baby niece named Ella.  She is the cutest.

  • We have been watching The Bible on the History channel on Sunday nights.  The boys love it.  It's been a great opportunity for dialogue with them.  They get annoyed with us pausing it all the time to tell them background info or to explain that certain parts of the movie didn't really happen like that.  But it's the perfect opportunity to see the Bible come to life and fill in truth in their lives.  


Spring is coming.  Right?

Friday, February 1, 2013

Eleven Days

Eleven days since my last post, yet it feels like I've lived eleven months worth of stuff in that time.

(Actually, it's now 14 days since my last post.  I started this one three days ago and then something else *hit the fan* so to speak.)  So it's a little inaccurate now.  Whatever.

*Deep, deep sigh*

Today all the kids are finally back to school and the flu has hopefully left our house for good.  

We had an ice storm, and then last night we had a thunderstorm.  In January. Weird.  It's like the weather is matching all the other crazy stuff going on.

(No worries though, because we also had a snow storm and school was cancelled three days this week...that's just part of the update for you.  Confused yet?  I am.)

Our tiny little church was a part of two funerals in the past two weeks.  

And some things you think would never happen.  Happen.

And you pray.  And pray and pray and pray some more.

Because life sometimes...well, it's terribly messy.  And hard.  And sometimes walking with people through their hard stuff brings a unique kind of pain.  

And sometimes you just want to blame it on the terrible month of January, and let yourself believe that if you can just make it to February 1st, it will be better.

Because maybe it will.  

A few weeks ago, I came across this verse from our Bible Study and although I'd heard it before, I heard it that time in a new way.


John 16:33

New International Version 1984 (NIV1984)
33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”



Jesus sets the bar at trouble.  "You will have trouble"  Period.  It's like He said to me, expect it.  Don't be shocked, and certainly stop trying to live life in ways to avoid the trouble.  Life is trouble.  But Jesus has told me the things I need to know and hear, so that I can have peace.  And then He gives a big, fat, fresh dose of perspective by reminding me that these current troubles, are just itty bitty in the scheme of things.  

Big picture:  He has overcome the world.

The world, and all the crap that it has to offer and throw at me...I can deal with because of Jesus.  

He has won already.