Monday, June 28, 2010

Growin' Up

I think it is really hitting me for the first time, just how "grown up" my girls are becoming. It probably helps that I'm not distracted by an infant, but I am really noticing some dramatic changes is so many ways: their physical appearance and growth, their mature conversations and deep questions, their thoughtfulness and instinctive care-taking for their brothers. their growing skills of negotiating the natural bumps in the roads of relationships (especially with their sisters!).....the list seems endless.

Many times over the years, older, more experienced moms would look at me and my little ducklings and often comment, "Hang in there. It won't be this way forever. They will grow up before you know it!" I held on to those words through sleep deprivation, sickness, melt-downs, potty messes, endless meals, etc. There was certainly joy that was felt during those years, but, honestly, it was all sort of a blur.....a happy blur of survival. HA! I like that phrase if I do say so myself. Listen to me, I sound like I'm out of this stage of life.....not quite, but the season is changing a bit and I'm enjoying the changes!

Now it's summertime and I get to have all 5 kiddos home with me everyday! I LOVE IT! I know there are many moms who dread the summer for this reason. But, honestly, I'm so grateful to Jesus for my family. Life is surely not a bowl of cherries (or chocolate, which would be my preference:-) But I still wouldn't trade it for anything! My physical therapist looked at a picture of my family and I at the beach recently and said "You are rich!" Ah. Yes. So true! All thanks goes to my Daddy! I'd be poor without Him!

Sunday, June 20, 2010


When a man puts his physical seed into a woman, he creates a responsibility for himself for which he may or may not have planned. This, in my opinion, is not fathering in the truest sense of the word. True fathers are investors but in a philanthropic sort of way. They lay down their life for those under their care, with no regard or consideration of a return. It is solely for the betterment of his "children" and, ultimately, eternity. True fathering has nothing to do with a physical seed. It is the spiritual seed, the planting of all he has into the soil of a young, tender garden. It is a choice to initiate demonstrative honor towards those younger than him, physically, spiritually or both. Fathering is a flat out sacrifice of all that one has. The Father of all fathers set the standard when he turned his Son over to death and hell for the investment of eternal life this act would provide for the rest of His kids. Wow.

I have interacted with a few dads lately who speak with regret of the physical lives they have helped to bring into this world. One man even said, "if I had it to do all over again, I wouldn't have had children." Ouch! That hurt my heart. I can't even imagine the Father's perspective. Children, physical or not, are not a commodity. They are not to be seen as a source of selfish gain or pleasure. Children are a vault of limitless wealth, waiting for a father to come along, with keys of honor and selflessness and unlock the treasure.

Today, I honor all fathers who have and continue to plant seeds of life and eternal value into their children, biological or not. May your supply of love, compassion, mercy and grace be endless as you daily lay down your life for others. And may the pleasure and love of The Father overtake you as you fix your gaze on Him, your source for all that you need.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

"Private Office"

Our house is about 100 years old and has beautiful character - hardwood floors, chestnut trim around every window and doorway, wooden pillars and banister. We are also grateful for the full walk-up attic with a wood floor. It has been GREAT storage space over the years for my dozens of rubbermaid bins. We considered finishing the space to make another livable room, but the roof pitch is too steep and we have already had too many near concussions while "visiting" the attic.

Recently, I have been "cleaning house" and getting rid of LOTS of un-needed "stuff". It has felt SO good to simplify life a bit (although a simple life is never possible with 5 little ones around). Needless to say, some space has been created in the attic, where the roof is high enough for 4-footers and we decided (per my dad's idea) to put a small desk for each of the girls up there. My kids share EVERYTHING, including underwear. They've tried to create their own "space", but when there is a shortage of that already, it all tends to bleed together. Plus, little brothers like to infringe on space and possessions not belonging to them. Little brothers aren't allowed in the attic.

Wow. I never would have guessed the measure of delight this new "girls only" space has brought to them! Now, remember, it is an attic and does get sweltering on hot days. We've already had to tell them (as we observed their bright pink cheeks and sweaty heads) on occassion that they must come down because it is too hot. Grace posted a sign on the door "Girls Private Office". They are up there as I write, creating cards for Father's Day while the boys nap, one of them occupying the girls' bedroom (yes, they even share beds). Their own desk and chair, complete with their own drawers and storage......I'm so happy for them!

Now, if I could only find a place for my own private office.... I'd even take a private bathroom at this point in life....