Wednesday, July 16, 2014

I'm a Good Girl and I'm proud of it.

“You’re the Lord of all creation
And still you know my heart
The Author of Salvation
You’ve loved us from the start.”

These song lyrics are so beautiful to me. They compare the bigness of God to the fact that He still sees the smallness of me. They somehow help me grasp the infinite timelessness of Him while at the same time show me that He stakes a personal claim in my life.

Big yet Small
General yet Personal
World-Maker yet Me-Creator

It just makes my mouth drop open in awe that He is all those things at once.
Because He is.
And that’s seriously mind-boggling.

So, I’m here to ask you a simple question today:
Do you believe that the huge God of the Universe could care about little ol’ you?
Do you really believe that He loved you before you were even a speck on the map?
Because even though you weren't here all those billions of years ago when God created the earth,
God already knew you.
By. Name.

Yes, He knew the name your parents would give you.
But that’s not what I mean.
He knew (and still knows) you.
Cause you’re more than just your given name.

Genesis 1 (msg) says it like this:
"God created human beings;
 He created them godlike,
   Reflecting God’s nature.
       He created them male and female.
God looked over everything He had made;
       it was so good, so very good!- v.27 and 31

God sees you.
God know you.
And He calls you “good.”

I looked up the definition of good in the Merriam Webster dictionary and this is what it says:
“Of high quality.”

It seriously says that.
So that means that before I was born and ever even had a chance to do anything of value or worth...God called me valuable and worthy.
He looked at me all pruny and tiny and said, “ Harmony, you are good.”

Here’s the catch!
Here’s what we almost always miss when we look at the vastness of creation in comparison to our smallness-

He calls us good because He created us.
He makes us good.
He makes us of high quality.

That’s it.
What did I do as a drooling infant to earn this name?

He did it all.
By simply creating me good and fashioning me for His good life already prepared for me.
(Ephesians 2:10)

What a thought!
My finite life started before I was even a tiny seed in my mother’s womb.
Because God’s infinite love planned for me to be here.
His love literally gave me life.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Wash. Rinse. Repeat.

Last Sunday, my pastor preached a sermon on overcoming.....Discouragement, Defeat, Fear.

Check it out here:

One thing he said that really stuck with me was this phrase:
"I may be stressed, but I'm not stressed out!"

He challenged us to declare that phrase when we're going through hard times.
And I have been.
Literally every single day this week.

Because sometimes I feel like I'm on the losing end when it comes to this parenting-my-kids-right thing.
Some days I'm just on autopilot and the same phrase literally comes out of my mouth 10 times.

It starts out simple enough:
“Put your shoes in the closet.”
“Please remember to flush the toilet.”
“Don't ask me that again.”

Then it escalates a bit:
“Why am I tripping on your shoes??”
“Who forgot to flush the toilet again??”
“If you ask me one more time....”

Now, it's all hell breaking loose:

You know what I mean, right?
(Please tell me I’m not the only one!)
I liken those days to a pile of dirty laundry getting ready to go in the washer.


That dirty pile of clothes needs to be washed.
If I leave it sitting there in it’s dirt, oil, and muck, it’s just going to stink.
I can try to ignore it.
But I’ll have to get to it….eventually.
I have to wash the clothes.

So I throw them in the washing machine.
Soap and water flow through the clothes until all the dirt is loosened from the fibers.
And the time to rinse them through begins.
Until all the brown water drains.
Until all the dirt is gone.

Then alas, I have to accept the fact that I will be doing this all over again in just a few days.
Because laundry is never done.
It’s an ongoing process. (Exhausting as it may be.)
Until we die.

Isn’t that just like parenting?
It’s never done.
It’s my job as a mom to never let the cycle get interrupted.
It’s my job as a mom to fix the washing machine when it breaks.
It’s my job as a mom to separate the whites from the darks.

And when I do, as exhausting and draining and trying as it is, the clothes come out clean.

Every. Single. Time.

Oh it’s not my own awesomeness that cleans my kids up.
But my awesome God that is living inside of me is the One that gives me the grace to keep that cycle going.
Because God knows I can’t do it in my own strength.
I don’t want to even try to parent without His grace to empower me.
I would jack up my kids. :)

This week has been tiring because that endless, repetitive cycle has made me feel like my kids aren’t learning anything.
That they’re stuck in their muck of dirty, sticky behaviour.

But again, God reminds me that without my willingness to “repeat the cycle”, they would be stuck:

Not knowing how to make godly decisions.
Not knowing how to listen to His voice.
Not knowing what path to take in life.

And if God has to constantly remind me to remind my kids to pick up their shoes then it means I’m listening to the right source.
So, they will follow by example.
And EVENTUALLY I will begin to see the cycle play out in their own lives without my having to remind them.

Because isn’t that the goal?
To raise amazing God- focused kids chasing after God-sized dreams with a God-centered heart and God-fueled passion?

So I’ve decided to keep doing the laundry.
Because who doesn’t love the smell, look, and feel of clean clothes just out of the dryer?