Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Run with endurance

'Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us. Looking to Jesus, the founder and perfector of our faith.' Hebrews 12:1-2

My alarm goes off at 4am. I barely hear it I'm so exhausted. I turn off the alarm and hear rain, "thank you Lord." Our running coach posted that if it was raining this morning we would run our last 5k tomorrow instead. I wake up a little while later to husband going in the living room to watch the weather. Two sets of little feet go padding down the hallway after him. My whole body is aching. My jaw hurts causing my head to hurt. I need to stretch my hamstrings more so my lower back will stop aching. I lay there. The littlest starts calling out from his crib. Husband goes in to him "Good morning Bub!" Makes me smile. I finally talk myself into getting out of the bed because daughter keeps coming in asking to wear a dress or skirt and can I help her get it. I'm feeling drained. "Father, help me to get my last run in today so I can prepare for Saturday. Just help me. I've been feeling drained, short, unable lately." Short, quick prayer while I pick out a skirt for daughter, clothes for littlest and assess what needs to be accomplished or gathered for middle to go to school. Ok. Husband pretty much took care of everything so now I need to pull myself together, take all my vitamins/meds, drink a Spark, and get my butt on that treadmill. Send middle off to school with hugs and kisses.

I go down in the basement with headphones on worship music, contemporary Christian. I set foot on the treadmill and hear "I'm here." I get weepy. When He called me to be a runner, He was already there, waiting on me. When He called me to run, I wasn't a runner. I actually hated running. He has been so faithful, so loving throughout this journey. I'm astonished at what He has done in me and with me through my running journey. I can say this about everything He has called me to. He is already there, waiting for me, waiting to bless my socks off, waiting to do great things through me. I want Him to use me. There are hard days, there are good days, and He's there.

I finish my last 5k training day before my "big" race this coming weekend. I cry with gratitude and thankfulness. I praise Him. Not just for the opportunity to physically run, but to be able to run toward Him with everything in my life. To give Him my life. Let me run toward Him with my parenting, being a wife, in my relationships, in my friendships. Let me seek Him first. Let me give to Him first. I will cross that finish line this weekend with praise for Him only. He is the only One that accomplished each step, each mile.

Be encouraged friends: even if you aren't a physical runner, I pray that you run toward Him with everything in you!

My prayer for the runners
Father, hold the hand & heart of every runner this weekend. Let You be their encouragement, their prize. I pray protection over spectators and athletes. Lay Your healing hand on those that are aching or injured. Give peace to those that are doubtful of their abilities. Thank you for the bodies to accomplish this, thank you for the opportunity to run. Father I thank you for the support system of running groups and most importantly for families, spouses, that have encouraged, supported, and at times sacrificed so that we may live out the calling you have set before us. I thank you so much for the friends you have given me, old and new, that have pointed me toward You. Father we love You and praise You, in Your precious name. Amen.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

21 Day Facebook Fast

Yep, sooooooo, I'm fasting from Facebook.....doooododo....mmmm....(twiddling fingers). What to do, what to do. I know! Write some blog posts! No but seriously, it's been a super awesome experience. So here's the deal, our church, Lancaster Community Church (LCC) is going through some super amazing, totally awesome, life (er, church) changing changes and our pastor Matthew Johnson asked us to join him in praying for these changes and fasting from something we "like". I knew for me it had to be Facebook. God doesn't call us to be something because it's easy and He definitely doesn't call us to something to just be mediocre! So I knew 2 things: 1. this was probably going to be difficult for me 2. God's going to do something AWESOME! My relationship with Facebook prior to the fast was....well....time consuming. I would spend a lot of time reading & liking posts when I could be doing other important things. Don't get me wrong, I super love keeping up-to-date with all of my friends and even people that I don't get to see often. I think Facebook is a great tool to stay connected with people. But just like any good thing, some of us (eh em, me) can just get too engrossed. I will be back ..... but it won't be as many times a day:)

I know ya'll are just dying to know what I've been doing in the whole week and a half since the fast began so I'll give you an update. The first couple of days I mainly complained and was super negative about not being able to get on Facebook and interact with others. I know, doesn't sound like a Godly woman but it's true. I was not pumped about it. Being a stay-at-home-mom I wanted to interact with other adults. And let me just tell you, good friends who are also fasting from things and even from Facebook as well really help!!! I still have a hard time occasionally.....I'll touch the app to bring it up (and sometimes it's out of habit) then hurry up and press the "home" button. And I really have learned a lot from this experience. I pray. Every time I think I need to get on there for an "outlet" and  god gave me this verse during the first couple days so I have been going back to it often:

'I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or  empty, with plenty or little.' Philippians 4:11-12

Ava has said soooooo many hilarious things since I've been absent! Cash is saying a lot of things and his personality is really showing! And Graham starts school soon! I'll be back before that happens though so I'll be able to post pictures:) So in the meantime we are doing all sorts of fun stuff, sewing, and a lot of reading. I'm beginning to wonder how I had time for Facebook before......:)

Praying for ya'll!

P.S. Email me.....I love hearing about your day or anything else!!

Friday, January 31, 2014

Mommy-ing is holy work

Truly, this is a holy work. Raising a family, Mommy-ing. Wiping boogers, cleaning ears, finger painting, correcting speech, encouraging speech, playing cars, playing Barbies, giving baths, watching cartoons, saying I love you. Total work for the Kingdom. Doesn't feel like it some days and those are the hard days. But the good days, the total joyful days, which are most, are what this Mommy-ing business is all about. Our youngest wants me to rock him all the time. I smell the top of his head and think heaven will probably smell like this. The middle one has a woobie that he drags around the house and when he's tired he hands it to me for us to cuddle it together. His head smells like heaven too, like pure comfort. The oldest loves to talk, about everything. She mostly goes on and on about random things but while she's talking I watch her as her eyes light up, they twinkle. She's a hoot. She wants to be just like her mommy she's saying. Today she's a pirate that has pixie dust and flies around the house coaxing her brother to fly with her.
   Every morning I try to do my devotions, I want them to see me craving God's Word. I want them to see that on the hard Mommy-ing days, I still want to have a heart like His. I want them to see that on the grief stricken days, He's the only one sustaining me. I want them to see that I turn to Jesus first with sadness, joy, praise. Some days it's impossible to get my devotions in. I turn on worship music often throughout the day and we dance and raise our hands in the kitchen. When there's time we sing the Armor of God song and go over memory verses. We pray, many times. If none of these things happen, I'm still discipling God's children. I'm still raising lovers of God. Their little sponge brains see the love of Jesus when I deliver a meal to a new mom or pray with a friend. They hear Jesus' love when their Daddy & I talk to each other, how we interact. They see that we look to Him for guidance in every single decision we make from buying a car to what color to paint the kitchen because we want what He wants. We discuss things like what we need to do at the church, the funny thing that one of the kids said to us in the Sunday school class we teach, things. My job is the most important job. My job is to teach my kids about Jesus, to disciple them. To show them Jesus with my love, my actions & my words. Yes, Mommy-ing is holy work. God work.

I pray you've had one of the good Mommy-ing days today! :)
Love you all!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Speech apraxia, a wordless world. My beautiful boy.

We put on our costumes for trick-or-treat, took pictures, bags in hand, super excited. Ava a Princess, Graham a dragon & Cash a monster. We began our door to door candy begging. Graham was over the moon about the whole experience and in my opinion, the cutest little dragon and just so sweet to watch. Half way down the first street we came up to a house and the one thing I was dreading happened....the person passing out candy said "you have to say trick-or-treat to get a piece of candy". Hurriedly I said "Trick-or-treat!", reluctantly the person put a piece of candy in his bag and we shuffled along to the next house. I quickly studied Graham's face to see if there was a reaction and of course, he was just joyful to be getting candy he didn't seem scathed. Moments like that make me catch my breath and my heart hurts a little. Doesn't phase Graham, hurts momma.

Graham has Developmental Childhood Speech Apraxia. Basically this means that his brain isn't making the connection to his mouth to tell it how to form words. It's definitely correctable with therapy, thank you Lord. The thing with apraxia is that it's a long learning road. He will gain words slllloooowwwllyyy, and after he's gained a word he could lose it for awhile. He's not dumb (actually, he's quite genius). He doesn't have a mental disability. He's not contagious. He's not diseased. He's normal. He's beautiful. He loves trucks, trains, tractors, superheroes....anything boy. He's fearless (which scares me because he will jump off of anything!).

Graham does have a handful of words.....he's says "No!" like a professional:) And a couple months ago he said "mom", lost it for a month or so but has started saying it again! It makes my heart sing😊 And he does make a grunting sound when he has something he wants to "say". God put on my heart to write this blog post to tell ya'll about my precious boy because I've been feeling the weight of others' comments and judgements. He is setting me free of that and maybe our story will help someone or our testimony. It hurts my heart when people stare at him like there's something wrong with him, make judgmental comments, or even comment about our parenting. The good news? God
made Graham. God loves Graham more than we do. It's amazing me how He is putting everything into place so that Graham will get everything he needs to be successful. I Praise Him daily for this! Graham is so intelligent and I can't wait to see what he's going to do for the Kingdom of God!
I am so excited to listen to him....I'll hang on every word:)

Love and blessings to you all!

P.S. I'm kinda hoping for a British accent when he does begin speaking. Wouldn't that be awesome?!! :D

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Mommy, does Heaven have a slide?

Since we have a precious angel in Heaven, our niece Vera, Heaven is a hot topic in our house. We strive for it, long for it, imagine what's going to be there, & mostly wonder about it (lots of questions).

Almost never do my husband or I bring up the topic, it's always Ava or our nephew Jaxson when he's here. I absolutely love the heart of a child, the topic of Heaven included. They always inquire with happy hearts & are excited to get to Heaven. One day while Jax was here & we were all sitting down to lunch Ava asked
"Mommy, does Heaven have a slide?"
Me: "I would think it does. Heaven has all kinds of fun stuff!"

Just yesterday Ava asked "Mommy, how do you get to go to Heaven?". There it was, the ultimate question as a Christian parent I've been waiting for.
Me: "All you have to do is follow Jesus."
Ava: "We do that! I love Jesus!"
Me: "Yes you do."
Ava: "Well sometimes we do bad stuff. And you get mad at us and put us in the corner."
Me: "Yes, sometimes I need to discipline you so that it teaches you the right thing to do because I love you."
Ava: "Well dults (adults) don't get in trouble."
Me: "Actually, adults need to be disciplined too because even adults are sinners. God disciplines adults but He loves us so he disciplines with love just like mommy & daddy do for you and your brothers."
Ava: "Yeah. I bet Vera's going down that big huge slide in Heaven. I can't wait to go down it!"

I just love her heart:)I told her she will be very old when she gets to go to Heaven & that concerns her because "old people don't go down slides". I explained that even old people go down the Heavenly slide:)

Happy Sunday ya'll:)
Go down a slide with your kids or grand kids today to get a small taste of what  Heaven is going to be like:)

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

That's me, Mommy genius.

Bare with me people, this post might seem a little scattered on my thoughts but such is my life.:) Every time I give Ava any food today (breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack etc) she says:
"Mommy, you're a genius!"

I know she's heard it somewhere and is just repeating. I'm just afraid she's going to actually learn what it means & stop saying it! Ha! A couple weeks ago she referred to me as 'Your Majesty' for a couple days. I dug it.

You know those long periods of quiet time you get with God to just "listen"?
Yeah me either.
I was actually laughing about it with God as I was attempting some quiet time in the shower when one of his beautiful creations came in to tell me about Doc McStuffins who had just fixed a robot & then another one came in to so politely demand I get him more milk...right this second...soaking wet and all. I used to feel like I was letting Him down by not allotting specific time to spend with Him. God wants us.... all of us. And He wants time alone with us. But He also gave me this life. He knows what's going on every second and He loves me for all my attempts to get to know Him in this season even when I'm stirring dinner, filling a sippy with milk, and reading my bible study all at the same time. So be encouraged Mommas,  God will help you get some quiet time. I crave it, seek it, long for it. I also know that, right now in this season, my quiet time has to look a little differently than I first imagined it. Like right now, I just turned on Max & Ruby because everyone decided they are on strike against naps today, the new puppy (oh yes, I'm pretty sure I'm crazy but this is a whole other blog post topic) is sleeping in her crate, & the youngest is playing with a plastic box for this second so I'm going to read a couple sentences:)

Happy Chaos all you Geniuses or Your Majesties:D
Abbey aka Mommy Genius

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Let me reintroduce myself....

Wow, it's been a long time since I've posted anything! Life has been crazy, blessed & crazy. A lot of you have encouraged me to write a blog, mainly about the hilarious things my daughter Ava says so I'm gonna do it here. I might post once a week, I might post 3x we'll see how the weeks go:) (As I was just typing that my son Cash puked on my bed ha!)

As an introduction to the hilarious things Ava says I'll share my all-time favorite Ava-ism:
Ava: "Mommy (everything she says starts with 'Mommy') I have 1, 2, boo-boos."
Me: "yes you do."
Ava: "So since I have 2 boo-boos we call them boobies now."

I will also post more about my (our) walk with Christ. Testimonies are ever-changing & I find it incredibly encouraging when I read other peoples' testimonies that they share along the way. So as God lays it on my heart, I will lay it on a post:)

I hope you enjoy the laughter that comes from our home & the love:D If I can pray for something specific for you don't hesitate to message me!

Love & laughter to you all!

P.S. Today, Ava is telling me I'm a genius every time I give her something to eat. The girl has wisdom:)