Wednesday, August 23, 2017


I sat in the sand as the water whirled past me on each side. The salty air whipping my face. The sun trying to peak out through the clouds. 

My husband and my oldest boy are in view riding the waves. My girls run around in front of me, jumping over waves one moment and bending down to pick up a curious looking seashell the next.

My youngest is sitting curled up in my lap. He has not enjoyed the beach much so far. The water, with it’s constant motion and roar, are a little much for him. He has enjoyed the sand but it has not captured his interest enough to let me out of his sight. 

I sat down in the water and invited him to sit with me. He hesitated at first but his desire to sit with me outweighed his fear of the water. At first he was lying on my lap facing the ocean. But he did not like the way the water would race up to his toes and lap at them. So he turned around and nestled into me. 

“Hold you, Mommy,” he said. So I held him. 

I started thinking, next year when we come, he will probably like the water. My others have faced their fears year by year and next year he will probably have gained some courage and will want to be jumping the waves with his Daddy and older brother. 

So I sit, holding him, as he squeezes my arm every time the water trickles up to us. His squishy little cheek up against mine. His warm breath against my neck. I desperately wanted a picture of us to capture the moment. But I decided to cherish the moment instead. He will not be a baby snuggled up in my arms for long.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Princesses and Prayers

The other night at bedtime I was praying with my 4-year-old, Jaidyn. About halfway through praying she tapped me on the shoulder. I opened my eyes and she said, “Mommy, will you ask Him to make me a princess when I grow up?” I smiled and continued and shared her request with God.

I’ve been thinking a lot about her request over the last couple of days. I think a lot of us would look at her request and think it’s childish, which it is, and a little over the top, which it is. But something about it makes me pause. 

Sometimes I think I go to God and make my requests known to Him, but in my heart my faith is so weak. Now, I know God is big. I know He is powerful. I know He holds the whole world in his hands. I don’t think it’s always as much of a matter of “Can He”, but “Why would He?” I essentially put God’s “No” on the table for him

I’ve been really struggling a lot with some weaknesses I’ve noticed in my life and some lies from the enemy I’ve been believing.  I have struggled to take these things to God because of the shame and guilt I have felt because of them. I have prayed about them but my belief in him acting on them has been very weak. I have felt like they were just too much. I was doubting God’s ability to forgive me and give me victory over these things. I didn’t so much feel like God could not change my heart and give me victory over these things. I think I struggled to believe that he would want to. Why would he do that for me? My heart is too dark. I don’t love him enough. See, what Jaidyn asked for may seem kind of silly, but the fact is, she believed that He could do it and that He would want to. 

The Lord, in his kindness, brought me to this verse the other day as I was reading Grace Based Parenting... 

“Therefore, since we have a great High Priest who has gone through the 
heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess.
For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses,
but we have One who has been tempted in every way,
just as we are, yet without sin.
Let us approach the throne of grace with confidence, 
so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”
(Hebrews 4:14-16)

This passage has reminded me that we have a mediator, Jesus Christ. He is very much acquainted with the difficult things in this life. He knows our weaknesses because he felt them himself. He understands our temptations because he faced them while he was here. God came to earth and because of that He is able to identify with us. 

He became human. Yet, in his humanity, he never sinned. The temptation he faced never became too great. The weakness he felt never overcame him. 

He died a death that I deserved so that I may have life. Because of the cross, I never have to doubt his love. When the guilt and shame I feel because of my humanity become too much, I can remember that the cross was enough. 

I can go to God with confidence because Christ came in humility.  I can have confidence that his mercy is unconditional and his grace is abundant. Christ sympathizes with our weaknesses and his arms are open wide to receive us when we come to him. 

Jaidyn was asking of God in childlike faith. A faith not weighed down by burdens or doubts. And while God may never make her a princess with a tiara and a castle, I’m praying that one day she will become a daughter of the King.

Temper Tantrums

Have you ever been around a toddler having a temper tantrum. Our youngest son is in that phase of life where temper tantrums are kind of the norm. They are usually over the silliest things…like needing to say “please” to get his snack and not wanting to, or having to put his shoes on to go outside, or being told “No” for any reason. 

We have a few different ways of handling tantrums with him, but one of the things I do a lot of times is just hold him tight. He’s not the type to flail about while having a temper tantrum, but he does try to push himself as far away as he can. But I just hold him tight. 
He’s screaming. 
I’m holding him tight. 
He’s pushing away. 
I’m holding him tight. 
He’s probably cussing me out in baby language.
But I’m holding him tight. 
And eventually, 9 times out of 10, he will eventually just give up and collapse in my arms. He will sniffle and wipe his snotty nose on me and then will eventually curl up in my lap. 
The tantrums are enough to send me to the crazy house sometimes, but that snuggle after reminds me of the joy of parenting (because sometimes it’s hard to remember.)

I like to think of myself as that temper tantrum-ing toddler sometimes. I can be so demanding of my own way. I can get so upset when things do not go how I want. I’m not one to kick and scream…I got over that a long time ago…but I can have a pretty terrible attitude when people and situations don’t meet my expectations. 

But, praise God, He holds me tight. He is protective of His children. He disciplines and corrects  his children and He knows what is best for them.
When I’m trying to run 
He holds me tight.
When I’m angry and pull away from Him
He holds me tight.
When I feel lost and confused
He holds me tight.

And when I’m ready to surrender…when I have no fight left in me…He holds me tight. He never left. He was there holding me the whole time…just waiting for me to let go of me and lean into HIm.