Tuesday, April 11, 2017

My Girl

Yes, you're lovely, with your smile so warm
And your cheeks so soft
There is nothing for me but to love you
And the way you look tonight

This girl is changing me. Where I previously wished the hours away until bedtime, I now find myself ignoring the clock just a little bit more so I can take in the darling fat rolls forming on her beautiful legs and breathe in the freshness of her new baby smell. I sat with her on this blanket, legs stretched out in front of us and had the weighty feeling that I wouldn't have enough time with her. I'm not sure if the feeling was meant to foreshadow something dark or if it simply was there for me to recognize that she looks slightly more like a little girl today and a little less like my squishy newborn I brought home in July. It doesn't matter, though because either way, it's true. I don't have enough time to cherish this sweet girl. I began whispering suggestions for her. You can't be boy crazy because God is preparing someone for you. You have to focus on God and He will find the one you should pour your time and energy into. You will be his helper. Start praying for him now. I know you must be thinking- that's silly! But even if my brown eyed girl doesn't understand a word I'm saying, I know I'm communicating love to her in those moments. I touched her olive skin and I quietly sang to her as she looked at me with her adoring eyes and it hit me. I'm different because of her. She's my girl. She has changed me. I prayed for her, for the mother she would become. And now as she's laying on her back in her crib with her little hands curled up in those cute baby fists and sucking on her lower lip, I can only hope that she won't grow up too fast, that I'll be able to SEE her, to smell her, to have her wispy hair tickle my face as we dance together in the backyard, that I won't let the busyness of life take me away from my truly important mission right in front of me.

Saylor Eden.

My girl.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

When God Calls You

Have you heard of flow psychology? It's the idea that your body is functioning completely in tune with an activity at hand and you're able to naturally accomplish what you're challenged to do. People experience flow when they're playing a musical instrument, running a race, or any other time they're doing something they love to do. Every breath and movement that escapes their frame is working toward their goal. One is more likely to experience flow when goals are defined and require specific responses. So, yesterday when I glanced my eyes back from Abel in his car seat to the interstate in front of me and I saw a glimmer of brake exhaust, to my surprise, I felt a strange calm as I began to try to stop my car from slamming into the one that was flipping right in front of us.

The driver tried to brake quickly, lost control and slammed into the right hand side wall, then seemingly tried to over correct the problem when she drifted a few lanes over, hit the wall again and began flipping her car. Eye witness accounts are notoriously inaccurate, but I thought the car flipped 2-3 times while others behind me counted 4. Anyway, I thought I wouldn't be able to stop and if I did, the cars behind me would surely hit us. I came to a stop and just looked back at my sweet Merit, eyes wide with fear. Still, this calmness settled in my heart. I'm supposed to be here right now.

Miraculously, the cars behind me did not hit me or the car in front of me. When it stopped rolling, I moved around because I could see gas dripping and I thought it looked like a good way to get blown up. As I parked my car on the other side of the interstate and checked on the three kids I had in the car, I got out and went to help. It was interesting to see how people came together using their gifts. One lady started accomplishing all the practical obstacles- let's call the police, let's organize this traffic so the glass doesn't cut their tires, let's find who saw what. Another focused her attention solely on helping the woman get out of the car and yes she walked out of it. I couldn't believe it. As I got out of my car, I knew what I was supposed to do and that was pray.

Growing up, if you were going to ask me to pray in front of people it felt like the most massive task. My voice would shake. My heart literally hurt to be exposed in that way. I didn't feel like I was talking to God; I felt as if I had to perform. Eloquence under pressure. A shy, quiet introvert speaking to God for everyone to hear (and judge) is a good recipe for a nervous breakdown, in my case anyway. Honestly, I still feel a little on edge when I'm called to pray but it has gotten better over the years. Yesterday, the message I heard was clear: DO NOT LEAVE THIS SCENE UNTIL YOU PRAY OVER HER. 

Just like in the case of flow, the goal was defined and required a specific reaction. My body knew what to do despite the shock of what was happening around us. I was able to walk over and ask the young woman if I could pray over her. I hugged her as I thanked God for protecting her and her family (she told me she had just dropped off her baby). I don't write this to highlight me, I write this because God orchestrates it all. He needed someone there who would pray. He needed someone there who would jump into action to take care of the practical side of this situation. He needed someone who would have the words of comfort and companionship as she sat on the side of the road bleeding and pulling glass out of her face and hands. He called each of us to something that day. 

1 Corinthians 12:6 "There are different ways of working, but the same God works all things in all men."

Hebrews 13:21 "{He will} equip you  in every good thing to do His will, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight..."

I was so glad to be used by Him. This sinner. Apart from Him, I am nothing. Yet He loves me. He gives me purpose. He will use ME to glorify His name. He calls us even when we feel unworthy to do His work. You've heard it said that He uses the most unlikely of people and it's true in my case, too. I'm no good, but when He orders my steps I can fulfill a greater purpose than any of my own. I'm not sure what praying did for that girl or any of the folks that witnessed the scene from their cars on the road that day, but it doesn't matter because God has a detailed, intricate plan for all of us. The Savior of the world loves me so much that He would reach down to this stay-at-home mom who often feels aimless and give me specific directions to accomplish His will. That's big. Thank you, Jesus.

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