Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Updated Life

I realize now, I am a horrible blogger - and I thought I would be so good at it! Bummer!
Less than 6 weeks until we deliver baby J - dont forget to check out my last post for pictures and info on his little life.
On my darling E - she turned 3 and with that came a new child - I mean this with all seriousness. Why didn't anyone warn me that 3 is not the same as 2 - terrible twos, it laughable, it should be terribly terrifying threes...... I can't say I was prepared, because I wasn't, not at all. However, this past week all my hard work for the last 2 months is finally bringing about a positive change in those challenging behaviors - I could not be more proud of E and myself, we made it!!!!!
In fact, E is now becoming an even greater joy to me - she is such a little story-teller. Yesterday the stories were about chocolate milk that has blueberries in it, that tasted like strawberries, ranch dressing, and cranberries.... Interesting stuff! She also told me that she and I are afraid of dragons and daddy is not, and when we are scared he cuddles us and makes us feel better. I mean that is just about the sweetest, best-est, most honest, and loving thing a little girl could say. I am so glad she sees her daddy as a source of comfort and strength! E is also now reciting bible verses, talking about God being with us, and Jesus saving us - I am just in awe at her ability to know and remember these truths. She has come to a time of fearfulness and it has been refreshing to my spiritual growth to go back to the basic truths with her, the uncomplicated truths of God as our protector, through His power and strength. I feel myself approaching these truths openly, honestly, and fully - it is such a cherished time to share with her my truest heart and love for God. Even speaking to the power of God is us, that I am only able to comfort her, just like daddy, because God has given us those abilities. The full circle of speaking through His truth in a way she understands, building knowledge from nothing but her sweet little, practically pure heart, it's simply put, the most exciting part of parenting yet. And thanks to the terribly rough beginning to 3 - I take it as God opening our hearts to rely on Him to survive it, but also to teach us through it. The beauty of living in obedience to Him - never have I been so challenged to BE LIKE JESUS then when she was losing her mind and by His grace, I kept mine! That power and example of loving her through it, teaching discipline through it - God opened opportunities! Grateful!
E also can't wait to meet baby J - and neither can I! I am ready to have him in my arms - but I know, I know... I should appreciate the journey of pregnancy - and so we wait... 5 weeks, 4 days..... plus a few hours.... hahaha! He is such a treasure to me, like E has always been, feeling him move, I wake up most night with my heart rejoicing at the thought "He is alive, my son is alive." It has been a overwhelming and blessed pregnancy, despite the constant discomforts that come as a baby grows, kicks, and moves. I love him so very much - unexplainable love between a mother and her children.
Life is busy, we are still adjusting to our new home life... All is well, we are blessed to be close to our family. I see the blessing of their closeness in E's bond to them. It is so different, but in the best, and clearly God sent way. Yet, I have found myself complaining more than I should, which Chase made clear to me this week. However, I am processor - I think over things like hundreds of times. I reflect on our life here, there, and what the future will be like here vs. there. And life is about to drastically and blessedly shift with J's arrival. I haven't settled as quickly as I wish I could, but that doesn't mean complaining about it, so I press on, trying harder not to complain! The best thing for me this week was reading back on the emotions and timing of God moving us here, the clear knowledge that we did follow His leading, it was not anything but His desire, and in obedience we moved. The knowledge that our lives are being lived out by His will - there is no greater peace then being smack-dab in the middle of where you should be! Whoop, Whoop!!!!!!!
Prayer for the coming changes of J being in our arms and able to cry, out loud! :) With love, I pray all of you are doing well, very well too!

Searching for scripture of what our lives look like, this is one of my favorite passages in all of His word. Love the Lord, in that love obey Him, His good plans for you are waiting on the other side of you following Him in obedience. He is both protector and provider. His truth is not just for you, but for you to pass onto your children - that what you do, would be blessed by Him if you only obey - both in the suffering you had/have experienced and the freedom He gave you when you were released from your bondage and gave you the blessing He has stored up and prepared for you. You have seen the great work God has done... Dont forget it!

Deuteronomy 11 (HCSB)

Remember and Obey

11 “Therefore, love the Lord your God and always keep His mandate and His statutes, ordinances, and commands. You must understand today that it is not your children who experienced or saw the discipline of the Lord your God:
His greatness, strong hand, and outstretched arm; His signs and the works He did in Egypt to Pharaoh king of Egypt and all his land; what He did to Egypt’s army, its horses and chariots, when He made the waters of the Red Sea flow over them as they pursued you, and He destroyed them completely; what He did to you in the wilderness until you reached this place; and what He did to Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab the Reubenite, when in the middle of the whole Israelite camp the earth opened its mouth and swallowed them, their households, their tents, and every living thing with them.
Your own eyes have seen every great work the Lord has done.
“Keep every command I am giving you today, so that you may have the strength to cross into and possess the land you are to inherit, and so that you may live long in the land the Lord swore to your fathers to give them and their descendants, a land flowing with milk and honey. 10 For the land you are entering to possess is not like the land of Egypt, from which you have come, where you sowed your seed and irrigated by hand as in a vegetable garden. 11 But the land you are entering to possess is a land of mountains and valleys, watered by rain from the sky. 12 It is a land the Lord your God cares for. He is always watching over it from the beginning to the end of the year.
13 “If you carefully obey my commands I am giving you today, to love the Lord your God and worship Him with all your heart and all your soul, 14 I will provide rain for your land in the proper time, the autumn and spring rains, and you will harvest your grain, new wine, and oil. 15 I will provide grass in your fields for your livestock. You will eat and be satisfied. 16 Be careful that you are not enticed to turn aside, worship, and bow down to other gods. 17 Then the Lord’s anger will burn against you. He will close the sky, and there will be no rain; the land will not yield its produce, and you will perish quickly from the good land the Lord is giving you.
18 “Imprint these words of mine on your hearts and minds, bind them as a sign on your hands, and let them be a symbol on your foreheads.  19 Teach them to your children,talking about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 20 Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, 21 so that as long as the heavens are above the earth, your days and those of your children may be many in the land the Lord swore to give your fathers. 22 For if you carefully observe every one of these commands I am giving you to follow—to love theLord your God, walk in all His ways, and remain faithful to Him— 23 the Lord will drive out all these nations before you, and you will drive out nations greater and stronger than you are. 24 Every place the sole of your foot treads will be yours. Your territory will extend from the wilderness to Lebanon and from the Euphrates River to the Mediterranean Sea.25 No one will be able to stand against you; the Lord your God will put fear and dread of you in all the land where you set foot, as He has promised you.

A Blessing and a Curse

26 “Look, today I set before you a blessing and a curse: 27 there will be a blessing, if you obey the commands of the Lord your God I am giving you today, 28 and a curse, if you do not obey the commands of the Lord your God and you turn aside from the path I command you today by following other gods you have not known. 29 When the Lord your God brings you into the land you are entering to possess, you are to proclaim the blessing at Mount Gerizim and the curse at Mount Ebal. 30 Aren’t these mountains across the Jordan, beyond the western road in the land of the Canaanites, who live in the Arabah, opposite Gilgal, near the oaks of Moreh? 31 For you are about to cross the Jordan to enter and take possession of the land the Lord your God is giving you. When you possess it and settle in it, 32 be careful to follow all the statutes and ordinances I set before you today.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Our Son!

Hey Yall, since I am officially a resident of a small southern town, I will resume using yall as often as possible! It feels so good... Love this place! I am missing our family home, our cherished friends and family everyday. But for the sake of positivity I will say this move thus far, blessing! Blessed by those that really showed up and made our time there matter - and those that met us here to help us become one with our new home...
Anyways, to the blog title - Our Son - we have a son! I can't believe it. Mothers intuition has nothing on Gods purposeful plan for Chase and I's SON! I was convinced it was a girl, there were moments of doubt, but for the most part I was sure. God really wanted to surprise me, and boy did He, literally. When they told me, I started laughing hysterically and I could not stop. I have a son, I have now settled and am overjoyed and overwhelmed. I feel like it is really starting over, not just a baby but a whole new set of rules and teachings and promises.
Elizabeth, I cherish teaching her how to become a woman of God; something I have been taught, I have attempted to closely live out, and it comes so much more natural to me to understand a girl! Boys become leaders, heads of households, so God just gave me a household! I am truly freaking out! Raising a boy to become a man of God and loving Him, and then being the kind of man I was blessed enough to marry; Our son becoming that, I have tears in my eyes just thinking about it!
Women are raised to do amazing things, some going beyond what I even believe they were ever taught or readied for. Yet, not in a holier or better way but with Men the bar has been set, all a man should be laid out. Raising them to become like our perfect example, raising them to be like their Heavenly Father. WOW! It's a lot, and God trusted me with a son! I am overwhelmed!

In being the name crazed momma I am, I take more stock in the name meaning then in the actual name itself - thankfully every name has history even if you make it up - the parts came from somewhere - but I am also a traditional gal, so I don't tend to make up names! Our Son, we had no names in mind or even a list when we went to the appt to see Him, but we prayed that if it was a boy God would tell us his name. So after finding out "ITS A BOY," and my hysterically laughing subsided I started to let people know we have a son!!!! Immediately a friend text, "Jackson" - I sarcastically turned to Chase and said "Jessica says we should name him Jackson" Chase's response "I actually was thinking Jack." Then I get to work and my sweet co-workers, a huge part of my daily life had made a list of names for our son and Jack was at the very top.

Since I do not believe in coincidence at all, I started looking into what Jackson means. Jackson means son of Jack - but Jack is derived from John. John, the cousin and the feet sent to prepare the way for Jesus' earthly ministry. It means God is gracious, and He is. The middle name I knew I wanted something different, that started with an A, that was also biblical. We stumbled through a huge list of obscure biblical names and found Abram, which to me isn't that different, but enough. Abram means high, lifted, or exalted. Jackson Abram "God is gracious and exalted." I could leave it there but I believe in the legacy of this name. Gracious people are loved, but often can be taken advantage of or stepped over. Yet God is gracious and lifted up, we praise Him for His graciousness. Forgiving, compassionate, merciful, kind, and generous all qualities of Gods graciousness in the bible. My husband is a gracious person, a gift from God to him, nurtured by his own earthly father. Many times because of his gracious nature and giving spirit I know Chase could have been looked over, but God made him looked at. Others love and respect Chase because of his graciousness. Its a legacy that I pray Jackson will become like, following the gracious nature of his Heavenly Father and his earthly one; waiting for God to lift him up, instead of the world! Again, it's a lot but a challenge I am honestly ready for!

If you have scripture or encouragement for our son, post below or on facebook - I would love to share them with him and pray the words of God over him!

"Lord God of Israel, there is no God like You in heaven or on earth, keeping His gracious covenant with Your servants who walk before You with their whole heart." 2 Chronicles 6:14



Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The Faith Post

So this post is long overdue and literally a little over a year ago, I wrote a similar post with similar circumstances just for God to tell us NO! Last years post was about God fulfilling promises to our family, but promises that were not fulfilled my way but His way. Last year I was so excited to share about expecting a child God had promised to me in prayer, and He gave me that child for almost 12 weeks - I see blessings over that whole experience with Eli and I have grown and my heart has expanded because of that pregnancy and personal tragedy. I posted that one other blessing was coming but I did not share what it was - I am glad I didn't because God never granted PEACE over it, but now I will tell you - it was a job offer Chase planned to accept in Pensacola, but ended up turning down the position! All those things ended the same week. God purposed us to stay and so He began the process of fulfilling that promise of one day moving home to family but it wasn't time.... It is now, months ago Chase told me his desire for us to move home I said "No way, I am pregnant (oh, by the way I am 18 weeks pregnant!!!!! EKKK!) and this is not the time to move." I said I would consider it in another year and half. But soon after I realized I was wrong, God stated violently working in my heart and I literally had a pregnancy induced, emotional, crying and calling mommy day where I finally faced the truth, that the desire Chase had to move was from God and that is was the right time to pursue moving home. Within weeks we were prepping our home to sell and soon it will be listed and started sending our resumes to local courses and stadiums for employment opportunities. With all the unknowns one would think we felt uneasy, but God gave us complete peace in this decision, I am assured constantly that this move is His will. Anyways, God moving us... That is happening and here is how He has proven Himself Lord again in our lives. Chase called and asked around, but no jobs were available, so we figured our home would go up for sale and we would just wait out a job as best we could. I prayed one day and said "God how is this going to happen, what if things don't fall in place" His response in the depth of my heart was "Can't you let me WOW you?" I said "Yes, You can WOW me." I shared this with Chase and then waited, so sure of what was coming and still no earthly answers. But the weekend before we signed all the paperwork to list the home God called, in the form of a Country Club in the Pensacola area - and offered Chase a job, it was humbling and still is... But God gives glory to the humble - I can't wait to see what His glory is all about at this new job and location. I already feel He is using us, it feels weird because I haven't even done anything there yet, but I feel it coming, like ministry coming at me! Leaving our current home and created family here is going to be the rough part, I never imagined this day would come so quickly and I pray constantly that God helps me balance the flesh of my desire to love this place with His ability to let me love this place, yet accept His purpose in us leaving. The Faith Post, it is all about to happen but it is not done and until then we live in the faith of what is coming. Tonight I prayed at work and said this "God, You have granted so much peace over this move, it is not the time now to start doubting - I trust You with this move." and I do. He has the details, I just have to get there, one faithful step at a time.

Oh, and on Monday we have our ultrasound and after that I will post the story of this child - she is pretty special. Unless the she is a he, then he is pretty special, but more on that later!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Graceful Parenting

Last year I read a post by the wonderful Anna at http://annapianoruth.blogspot.com/. She is my cousins wife, and I have loved following her parenting journey. This specific post on graceful parenting was one of my favorites and often I think on her words about her childs behavior, his fear of consequence and this time, she choose to just hold him despite it all - giving him some grace. My little E is getting there, fearing consequences for mis-behaviors, and me trying to balance discipline and mercy. I find myself gaining patience and loving the interior, heart change that comes with this extended patience. Something I love and yet struggle though is that I always see the good in people, in E it is easy for me to see, she my daughter, my bronze love (God being gold and Chase coming in silver - obsessed with the Olympics, I think YES - hate it has been over.). Who she is becoming I love because I see the goodness of God all over her, but where is the line drawn between teaching her respect for what is right, integrity to choose righteousness over disobedience and sin and then, teaching her what mercy, grace, and sacrificial love looks like. The love that says "I don't care what you have done or will do, I just love you, no matter what is costs me." I ponder this daily, I think for the most part I get it right. I overdo the discipline here, give to much grace there - it all equals out, at least I hope it does. Just kidding, I am really trying here! Parenting sure isn't getting easier, but it is changing, she is changing and like I said, so am I; and I like it!

"Thank you God for the gift of parenting E. She is a treasure, I won't hide her away or keep her for myself - Lord, I choose to lead her to You. Let Your love grow in her heart - so she will choose Your truth and Your ways. Lord, when I think about her purpose, more than I can imagine or know; I realize that surrendering her to You means that when the cross-road of discipline or grace come, I must turn toward Your wisdom for guidance. So that my actions reflect Your heart, that my words are Your words. Help me live my life before her with integrity, the kind that chooses to do things Your way by obeying Your word and submitting my life before Your standards. Lord, also let me see Your people with Your love for them first, help me give grace and mercy to those You love so that E will one day do the same, even if that day is not as far off as I think it is right now. She is growing faster than I planned Lord and I just don't know how much longer she will be my baby, but You are ready for the person she is becoming, I need to follow closely, so soon she will too."

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

How becoming a mother was very becoming for me.

I fit into motherhood well, I am far from a perfect parent. I struggle through lazy days, housekeeping, and just figuring out anything for us to do - but becoming a parent fit me. I remember E when she first came into my arms - it made sense, it felt so good. When I look at pictures of her babyness I honestly do just feel my spirit filled with flutters of love and affection for the small, innocent child, it is good for my soul to remember that baby as we enter the "terrible twos." I don't feel that these days are actually terrible, but they are rougher than before, she is a little fighter - just like me. Anyway, when I think of her as a baby I remember the hard parts and question my desire to "go back," I mean I want another baby - but it is so much work, worthwhile work, but work. Then I look at those pictures, and how well God placed her in our family and just that overwhelming love we were given for her. I loved her helplessness and dependence on us, but her with another baby, can I handle that work? I already said I struggle through housework and suffer from fighting my laziness, I am not sure I can handle it! But motherhood is so becoming on me, I feel made for it, I know I am. So when I question if it will work the answer is yes. I am just not sure how or when so... "Lord lead!'

Check out my next post, I wrote it back in Sept - thinking on the coming Christmas - so many unanswered questions then about having more children, and raising E.... blessings......

Christmas Letters...An intended post for Christmas, but something I have wanted to share.....

Written Sept 8, 2013

Tonight I was reading Misty's blog (carryinganna.wordpress.com) and she had uploaded her Christmas letter in Dec and in March, well, I cant even believe that Annas birthday has already come and gone. I hold her in such high esteem because of all she has endured, and how she endured it. Then I also read about Sophie, born Sept. 1 to Lindsay and Kevin, and their inspiring faith. Faith I know I have, not even having walked through what they have. Their feet must hurt, those steps, they just seem unbearable. Okay, all the tears flowing, my eyes are swollen. But Christmas letters came to mind and I went and re-read ours from last year. I started wording ours for this year - the fact our baby Eli was due to be a Christmas baby, and our June baby Cary was mentioned - losing Eli the same week Cary was due, it was so rough. How will I share this again, how will I write this year. I think it will be something like:
So this is Christmas, what have you done, another year over and a new one just begun. I thought this Christmas I would be packed up to go to the hospital, praying off delivering on Dec 25th, hoping this time the baby would wait for his due date, Dec. 27th. If not, I told Chase we would celebrate at the hospital with Elizabeth, and I wanted a tree in the room (not sure if I told him that but I thought about it often). I had told the Dr's that I was sorry in advance if they were working Christmas on account of me, they laughed and said it would be fine, they would not be mad - it happens. I loved the promise of a Christmas baby, like he was more like Jesus, because to me (though I know it was not Jesus ACTUAL birthday) they shared a day of celebration (see how I worded that... go me). I thought I would have him before the due date and in my mind I did see that hospital Christmas - I was so happy about it. Those dreams are gone, my reality is an at home celebration, but we might just have to vacay because I think this year it going to be hard, really hard. The joy of Jesus upon us, I will smile and celebrate Him, I will even celebrate what He has done for us, but I will be sad. This Christmas wont be what I thought it should be, and that wont change. Thankfully this Christmas will be a greater reminder of what it meant to have Jesus come to earth at all. The salvation that could only come from His choice to leave heaven and meet us here, on earth. My children have already benefited from that gift - I wait for the inheritance part along with Chase and E and right now, I dont mind waiting. One more year, one more baby.
How do you write a letter like this, its a good thing I have time.

Other thoughts, E turns 2 in 11 days - WHAT!!!! Where did 2 years plus pregnancy go? I am not sure, I love her so much! I pray for her, the life God has given her to last and be fulfilling for her (selfishly for me as well). We pray off Satan for our children so often, and in Gods name I know he cannot have power here. God protect Elizabeth - thank You for Your mercies Lord, Father, Jesus. Anyways, I just cant believe she will be two!!!

Thoughts:
It is hard seeing pregnant ladies, really hard. I dont like it - I am still happy for them, but when you think of how you should look and you dont - its hard.
I dont know how I can ever get pregnant again - because I fear it, fear the loss that could be, that God could potentially desire that I lose another child. Knowing that His will could be that I have another child I could not keep (like Anna and Sophie) because "I know You trust me God, You have already given me so much to share, and I trust you with my life and my children's lives, but I am not ready right now. I feel like what You want for me and to hone in me to may require more loss; what this is and it may not be what I think, the outcome is Yours alone. You may want me to step out in faith despite the outcome (and I know this is true) but I am not ready, it's to much right now. Please grant me patience or in Your power and holiness lead me toward what is best. My Lord intervene in an unexpected way."

Friday, December 13, 2013

NEWS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

SO I have great news - I got some testing done to see why I keep miscarrying and the results came back as a blood clotting disorder. It is something treatable and there are lots of women who have healthy babies once diagnosed and treated during pregnancy (simply with a daily baby aspirin or herperin shots - great right!!!!). Chase and I can have more children! Best way to end the year - Thank you God for this answer! I still have lots of questions before I plunge back into trying for another child, but I am glad that God is allowing these answers to come our way. I am grateful I live in a place where I have access to these tests and can have proper medicines. Beyond grateful! All that being said, I have to share this: I was really sad when I first found out, the idea this is treatable and I could have held my babies if I had just known, or even that just one of them could have lived, I was sad. God and I had a long talk, and He reminded me today that a pill is not the reason I should have such peace about having another child, in fact a pill does not at all remove His sovereignty from my life. I cant have more children because I can take a pill, but because God will heal my body of this disorder, whether by treatment or miracle (I mean, I do have one amazing, miracle daughter). He is Creator, Sustainer, Giver of all good things, the children I lost they were good things, He created their lives and did sustain them for a time. A pill wasn't going to change His plans for my life and theirs. I have said to Him "Lord, You know You could have told me (when I was pregnant) to take a baby asprin, and I would have obeyed. You know I would have. I would have blindly obeyed You." In my heart I know this is true, but He didn't tell me; and I am never without Him. He didn't miss some memo to intervene on my babies behalf. I dont fully know why He choose this or allowed this but I know He IS with me each moment, He sees me, He is intentional, and He is purposeful beyond what I can comprehend or understand. Those are hard truths to digest in my soul. These truth weigh heavy on my heart - but they are fully His truths. God gave me two children I wont ever know - and He will allow me more because of the timing of His answers and His healing in my life. I know it's a lot to just throw out there, but it's His truth in my life, and Yours. He is never far from us.........



Now Momma can get to "cookin" too. Is that inappropriate to write here.....

And just in time, one out of diapers (almost).

Practicing holding a baby perhaps.... Lets hope not, poor Mickey is getting plenty of love, but maybe not oxygen... (good thing he doesn't need it, right)

Let the fun begin!!!!