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more than i can handle

5 Jun

I’ve said it.

I’m pretty sure you’ve said it too.

“God won’t give you more than you can handle.”  

Really?

Really?

Pretty much every minute of the day, I have more than I can handle.

Not in an I’m-so-overwhelmed-that-I-can’t-function kind of way {well, sometimes!}

but in an I-need-the-power-of-Jesus-to-live-the-Christian-life kind of way.

The longer I’m a Christian, the more I see my complete and total need for him in every area of my life. There is not one moment of my day that I don’t need His strength and grace to get through.

Love my husband and kids? Need Him.

Be content? Need Him.

Homeschool effectively? Need Him.

Manage my time well? Need Him.

The list goes on and on…but you get the picture.

God does give me more than I can handle so that I am propelled to be totally dependant on Him.

Totally.

Because even in pulling off a “successful” day week without His help, my self-satisfaction rises up and I pat myself on the back for a job well done…apart from Him.

“For apart from me you can do nothing.”

Nothing.

So why do we think that self-sufficiency is so great?

Why is an independent attitude applauded?

No where in the Bible does it say, “My power is made perfect in independence” or “the Spirit helps us in our self-sufficiency.” As Christians, it is through our dependence on God that we are strengthened and equipped to live a life that pleases Him. And yet, I still want to do everything on my own.

Why?

Because of PRIDE.

Pride stops me from admitting my need for help.

Pride hinders me from being vulnerable.

Pride recoils at the thought of submitting to Someone Else’s authority.

Because what it all comes down to is this:

To be dependant on God requires admitting that I am weak and imperfect. That apart from Him, I have no goodness of my own. And, that to be a follower of Christ, I must daily die to myself and fully rely on the Holy Spirit to live through me.

And the pride in me hates that.

The solution?

Humble myself before God.

Admit that I am weak and needy.

Receive the strength I need to tackle everything that comes my way.

It’s the only way to truly handle it all.

to prove i’m still alive…

20 Oct

It seems like years since I’ve been here. And truthfully, I even feel a few years older. This is a tough season of life for me. I’m the curious sort that has a love/hate relationship with change. And unfortunately, the kind of changes that I’m not so fond of have popped up a lot recently.

Most notably…September 16th my dad lost {or won, depending on your perspective} his struggle with cancer, and finally met his Savior. The last few days before his death were exhausting emotionally, mentally and physically. The weeks since his death have been hard too.

But not in the ways I expected.

It’s hard because…

…no one grieves the same way, yet we all have expectations of what grief should look like. I don’t grieve like my mom or brothers, or even my husband. And sometimes my way of grieving conflicts with their way of grieving. And, instead of getting offended or lashing out, I have to remind myself that we are all going through this together. And that lots of grace is required as we navigate this unfamiliar territory.

It’s hard because…

…life goes on whether I’m ready or not. There is a family to take care of, a house that needs cleaning, home schooling to be done, etc. There is no “pause” button to push until I’m ready to face the daily grind of life again. Moving on is part of the process, even when I’d like the luxury of making time stand still for a bit longer.

Along with that major life change, comes the start of a new school year. As much as I was looking forward to starting 1st grade with Sam, it was another transition to acclimate to. I’m happy to report that it’s going well…even though it’s not the well-oiled machine that it could be. We are working out the kinks one by one and I look forward to the next couple of weeks when we get into our “school groove.”

Ava turned two this month and is well on her way to perfecting her “terrible” status. Not really…but she is quite the drama queen and keeps us cringing or grinning, depending on her antics! She has a will of steel titanium and really dislikes to be told “no.” Her favorite response is to look at us with an expression that says, “Your rules don’t apply to me, I’m too cute!” Oy…

Rachel is 7 mos. old and has matured from newborn to baby {a change that any parent can appreciate} and she is now demanding my full attention. She loves to play peek-a-boo, squeals at her brother’s antics and loves to be surrounded by family. She has thighs that rival the Michelin Man’s and eats non-stop {or so it seems!}.  Her smile lights up the room and there is nothing, I mean nothing, that brings a grin to my face quicker than listening to her belly laughs.

So there’s the update of my life in a nutshell.

Just wanted to prove to you that I’m still alive. ;0)

a few new canvases

1 Oct

Hello, friends! Long time, no see.

Life snuck up on me and it’s been waaay too long since I’ve been here. One of the things that has kept me busy is working on canvases. Here are a few of my new creations.

my hope is in the Lord

26 Aug

The chorus of this song is really speaking to me today. I’m soaking up this truth, and so thankful that my God is always faithful to me.

day 16

27 Jul

Passage: Joshua 1:1-14:15

We can do amazing things when God is with us. 

“This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

{Joshua 1:9}

If ever there was a person that had reason to be afraid, it was Joshua. He had inherited the daunting task of leading the grumbling, rebellious, Israelites into the Promised Land. As if that weren’t enough, he was also responsible to clear the land of nations that were already settled there…nations much bigger and stronger than Israel.

So the Lord spoke.

“Don’t be afraid, be strong and courageous.”

“I will go with you. I won’t abandon you.”

Like Joshua, I have charge of a {sometimes} grumbling and rebellious little clan. Daily, I am in a battle to protect them from the enemy of their souls and bring them one step closer to the “promised land” of salvation. And, apart from the knowledge that the Lord is with me, my heart would be faint and my resolve weak. Who am I kidding, even knowing that the Lord is with me I still get scared and overwhelmed! I feel Joshua’s pain when rebellion rears its ugly head in my 5 yr old, or my {almost} 2 yr old decides to engage in a battle of the wills.

But as the Lord reminded Joshua time and time again, he reminds me.

“Don’t be afraid, be strong and courageous.”

“I will go with you. I won’t abandon you.”

And the stength comes.

And the fear subsides.

And God moves in ways that truly amaze me.

day 8…cheating

18 Jul

Passage: Leviticus 1:1-14:32

 Well, I’m not really cheating. I just think that Amy over at Mom’s Toolbox said it better than I could. So here’s the link to her insight for this passage:

Even unintentional sin is sin.

a place to call his own

12 Jul

Sam has a habit of choosing the most unusual places to read. When he was a toddler, we found him buried {E.T. style} in the middle of his stuffed animals, looking at books. If there is a nook or cranny to be found, Sam has discovered it and uses it as his own personal book retreat. Today I found him here.

He was singing to himself and reading his latest library book. And I couldn’t help but smile because in the chaos of our crazy little house, he had found a place to call his own.

i think i can, i think i can…

11 Jul

I’m on a quest.

Recently I came across Moms’ Toolbox, a blog that offers practical advice for moms growing in Christ. Today begins a challenge to read the complete bible in 90 days.

Ambitious, YES! Impossible, NO!

So, my quest is to {finally} get the whole bible read from cover to cover. Want to join me? Check this out, or follow along here. I’ll be posting each day’s reading schedule, with a quick comment on what I got out of the passage. Today’s portion is Genesis 1:1-16:16. I’ll be back later to share my thoughts. See you then!

for you

9 Jul

A prayer for you today:

“I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God. Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen.”

{Ephesians 3:16-21}

a beautiful day in the…hospital?

15 Jun

What a crazy week this has been.

Last Wednesday night Marko started saying that his heart was racing. He took his pulse and it was pretty high. He ate, took his medicine and it came down some. So he went to bed. Around 7 the next morning he woke up to his heart racing even faster. He called our brother-in-law and they took off to the Emergency Room. He was admitted within minutes with Atrial Fibrillation and spent the entire day on a stretcher (great for the back!). At 4pm his heart rate was still elevated, so they finally decided to admit him as an inpatient. At 11pm, and after some very strong medication, his heart rate stabilized. By the next morning he was still stable, and by that afternoon he was home. Hooray!

Or not.

Around 9pm Marko’s heart started racing again. By 11pm is was racing to fast that I could hear it when he walked by. So, we called our brother-in-law (because we had three munchkins sleeping soundly) and he whisked Marko back to the ER. After a sleepless night, he was finally re-admitted to the hospital. Friday morning (after more very powerful medicine) his heart rate finally slowed down. This time the doctor decided to monitor him for a while before discharging him (thankfully!). Saturday,  he had another episode  and at that point an Echocardiogram was ordered for Monday- to see what was going on. So we waited…and waited…and waited some more. On Monday the Echo was done and the results came back normal. In the meantime, Marko’s heart rate had stabilized and we received a ‘all clear’ for Marko to be discharged, pending the results of the Echo. So…yesterday afternoon he was discharged. Thank the LORD! We are so relieved to have Marko back home!