2 comments | published by Linda | August 31, 2010
Psalm 127:3
"Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him."

She must have wondered why there were six broken sticks in my purse. It made perfect sense to me. My children also knew of why. As I shuffled past the sticks, and loose gum wrappers, I smiled. There would be no other explanation of why, if it weren't for them. They are the reason for rubber bands, shells, and gum, and why they matter to me so.

As she moved my items across the scanner, she noticed the three standing beside me. She commented how amazed she was that I have three kids. Feeling like pulling out the line that seems to slay them all, I told her this was only half of my crew. As she tried to compose a calm response, she couldn't help but ask me why.

Returning home, I was chased by little arms that wrapped around my waist so tight, that I could hardly breathe, and was covered with a thousand kisses...yet people ask me why.

Later in the night, her tiny hand rubbed across my face as she slowly fell asleep. I thought again of the people that often ask me why.  

There is no simple answer for the one who asks, just a hope that someday they will come to know the reason for sticks, wrappers, and such things, and come to undersand the mystery of why.
Posted in Play Room    |   Tags: The Mystery of Why
3 comments | published by Linda | August 29, 2010
Psalm 16:11
"You will show me the path of life; In your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore."

He waits for me. It makes no difference to him if he is cold, tired, or the last to leave, he waits for me. At such a young age, he is already quite the gentleman.

As I reach through the car for my purse and my jacket knowing that the others have already run inside, I notice my little man that has once again waited for me. As I thank him for his loyalty, and companionship toward me, he consistently responds, "I will always wait for you Mommy, because I like you." For him, my presence is more valuable than rushing anywhere, leaving me behind.

As with most mom's, I am the last to leave the home, and the last to leave the car at the end of the journey. So many items to collect, light switches to turn off, and doors to check that postpone my departure for those extra moments. For him, to hold my hand, and to walk with me is what matters. Where we are headed is irrelevant. Therefore, he waits.

When I take the time to acknowledge the Holy presence that surrounds me, and I focus on Him, I can attain fullness of joy. When my destination and my schedule become paramount, my joy fades as my priorities have slipped. Far better it would be for me to wait for my Lord in quietness, to be still, and wait even when everyone around me is in a hurry, to find stillness there. 

God's plan for my life is not always fast. There are things He needs to do, and have done first, although I might not understand. I want to always have the patience my little son has, as he stands and waits for me, knowing that what matters to him is remaining in my presence. I can learn from his desire, of the need in me to consistently stand in my Lord's presence. Our destination is irrelevant, as long as we are together. Therefore, I wait.

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3 comments | published by Linda | August 26, 2010
After our towels were folded, our beach toys put back in the bucket, we slipped on our sandals. With arms filled, we headed on our way. Listening for their sounds behind me, I was keeping track that no one was falling behind. The trail of children behind me seemed to stretch out across the beach. The wind was blowing unusually strong, and the crowds had grown. As we weaved our way through the different groupings of people, my feet began to burn. I could hear the kids struggling to hold onto all that they had gathered, and an occasional shovel or or sunscreen bottle was dropped. 

Glancing back, I noticed my youngest was falling way behind. Being so far back, she had given up. There she stood, having dropped her doll and her bucket, she figured she was done. She had no hope. 

Walking back to her, I picked up her toys, put them back under her arm, and took ahold of her hand. She looked up at me and smiled. She had been rescued.

As we continued on our way, the wind was still blowing, the sand was still hot. The people and their towels were not easy to work our way around, and the sun was burning my skin. Her surroundings had not changed, her journey was the same, and yet, it wasn't. She had my hand. I had offered myself, and she knew I would lead her out.

How often we can feel overwhelmed by what surrounds us, and we stop, drop our toys, and loose our hope. Yet, our Lord, knowing our frame, doesn't ever leave us there. He comes, takes our hand, offers himself to us, and we can smile. We are rescued. The journey is still before us, the sand is still hot, the wind blows, but now we can have hope. Holding onto his hand, we know he will lead us out. 
Posted in Living Room, Play Room    |   Tags: Holding onto Hope
1 comment | published by Linda | August 24, 2010
It's easy for me to get several programs working on my computer at the same time. As my fingers are flying across the keyboard, I often look up and notice that annoying little rainbow wheel twirling away at the top of my screen. Apparently, I have overloaded it with information, it has become frozen, and needs some time for processing. I wait. 

After our most recent move, we have found ourselves spending hours in the garage, sorting through the endless piles of boxes. It's the random ones that slow me down the most. As I open one, I find what seem to be pieces, parts of different seasons and memories that I will need to sort through. In one is a toy that was my oldest son's favorite from over ten years ago. I can remember how he would hold it, ask me to watch him as he held it up to the sky, and would talk at a pace I couldn't keep up with. Next to it was a dress. I remember how my daughter wore it on that day we walked through the downtown streets, heading toward the ice cream store in the city we once lived. I become frozen. I need time to process the information I am overloaded with. I welcome these passages back to places where I once was. My wheel turns.

It's no wonder why I can struggle falling to sleep at night. So many things to process, trails to journey down that only lead to another. The older I get, like my computer, I need more time to process, as new information is brought to me and is added to what I am already holding onto. 

As is routine, when I take my baby daughter to a restaurant, she attracts the eyes of older women. Recently, a sweet old woman sat in a booth behind us. As she locked her eyes on the face of my daughter, I could almost see her wheel just turning. She was taken back to a place of joy, a time in her life when she must have held one so small, and cared for her through her days. She was processing, brought back, and frozen for a moment.

We need time to process, to be still, to remember. Life comes fast, and seems to rush by even faster. As years pass, we might appear to become slower, yet inside, we will be processing the joys, the sweetness and the grief that has brought us that far. 
Posted in Living Room    |   Tags: The Twirling Wheel
1 comment | published by Linda | August 22, 2010
Stepping into the bathroom, she caught my eye in the mirror. Dressed in capris, a bright tank, and a plaid button down, she walked over to the bathtub and sat on the edge. After a huge sigh, she told me how her clothes made her look fat. Once again, I told her to pick up my Bible on the edge of the sink and turn to Psalm 139. She grinned, knew the routine, and began to read.

As she was reading out loud, I continued putting my make up on, and figuring out my outfit for the day. After changing several times, I noticed I wasn't listening to the verses, but only hearing my own thoughts about how the shirt I had on had too large of a print which accentuated my belly, and how it fell at a point on my thighs that made me feel fat. Hmmm, I wonder where she got it from.

Reading how our Lord views us, and loves us, is food for our self image. Understanding and believing what matters to him, helps us to focus on what really matters, not what doesn't. When we begin to slip into insecurity, and disliking our outward appearance, we should be reminded of our hunger. We must fill our souls with what he values, and the knowledge of how special we are to him. This is food, we need it often.

Filling ourselves with his word is something we don't need to measure, weigh, calculate, limit or work to burn off. We can fill ourselves with no limits. I would much rather show my daughter how to break away from a self image that tells her she's fat, and replace it with a fat soul, filled with his love.
Posted in Powder Room    |   Tags: Food for Thought
0 comments | published by Linda | August 19, 2010
Hunched down, hovering over the colorful pieces that were scattered across the floor in front of her, she was obviously focused. It was as though she was unaware I was even in the room. After some time, she sighed, and looked up to find me. That's where I am. I'm up. In order to see my face, her head falls back, her eyes are raised, and she finds me. Holding her arms straight up toward me, I lift her up. Now, she can stare directly at me, and she smiles.

Taking a walk, I noticed as I was strolling across the sidewalk that the lines would seem to come and go as I made my way down the street. Sometimes a bush off to the side seemed to intrude over the sidewalk and make it more difficult for me to make my steps straight. A crack in the cement, a piece of trash that was carelessly dropped spilled soda right where I was going to step. I was focused. My head was down. After some time, I looked up to the sky, and I was somehow refreshed. 

As my head fell back, and my eyes were raised I thought of my Lord. This is where he is. My Lord is up. It's so easy to become focused on what is before me, and around me. Sometimes the ground before me is cracked, and trash has been carelessly dropped right where I need to step.

Where am I looking? Where is my focus? What surrounds my feet, whatever circumstances that might seem all consuming shouldn't bring my head down low, or keep my attention. My eyes belong locked on my Lord, and his intense love for me. If I daily lift my arms straight up toward him, he will lift me up, and I will be able to smile.

For a time, I am given the privilege of showing my children how to be loved, to trust, and to look up. God made it this way. For my children, I am up. I am also a mere picture for them of how their Lord will care for them for the rest of their lives. Oh, to show them how to let their heads fall back, raise their eyes, and to be lifted up. 
Posted in Play Room    |   Tags: Looking Up