In times of questioning… Part 1

In this time of questioning, one must ask, “What is Your will Father?” When all else seems to be lost in the time of confusion, one must ask, “Will You clear the way?” Yet, here I sit typing away wondering about the days to come. Not because I doubt His plan for us, rather what do I do to be obedient to Him.  When you don’t know what to do, what is the best option? Wait. Wait. Wait.  Wait until His path is illuminated. Wait until He tells us what to do. What until there is peace in the decision-making process.  So how am I going to do that??? I don’t honestly know.

These past few weeks have been really hard.  Challenging and frustrating. Scary and sorrowful.

I homeschool two of our three children. We have had an amazing year. A quote from Charles Dickens comes to mind, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…” Homeschool can be just that! Amazing and wonderful most days, but there are days I want to snatch them bald to be perfectly honest.  (They still have all of their hair 😉

Last week, my daughter’s computer crashed.  The one that she has been using for all of her school curriculum. In my 40+ years, I have NEVER had a computer crash. Needless to say, we lost everything. Why now?

We had some options. Option 1 was send the hard drive to a team of specialists in a white room where they would take apart every little minute piece of our hard drive to try to save the data, to the cost of $600-$1000.  Or option 2, (which we chose) was to replace the hard drive and lose everything.  EVERYTHING! All of her work since August was gone.

That left us with a very creative fun week of letter writing, cooking and library trips, to check out our weekly 60 plus books.  Though the computer was returned in perfect working order, I am bummed about the loss of her hard work.

We then received word that our health insurance policy was expiring, and they were not going to be renewing our policy. WHAT? Ok. Now what?  After doing research, finding an agent, and meeting at a local restaurant, we find that our income doesn’t support the need we have.  Swallow. Deep breath. God has this under control. He really does. Yes. He. Does. I continually tell myself. HE DOES. Full time work may be calling me out of the home.  God knows. He does.

That same week, my littlest runs in from the shop yelling that there is something wrong with one of our cats.  He had been sick, but not for long, and I had a feeling that Mr. Pickles wasn’t going to live much longer. Within moments of that conversation, he had passed away.  Sadly, their little hearts were throbbing in and their cries of hysterical pain echoed across the open area between the shop and our home.

Typically we have to bury an animal quickly, but daddy wasn’t home and I couldn’t break the rocky ground with the shovel. As hard as I tried, I just couldn’t get a hole started. The questions came from the kids, “Why did this happen to Mr. Pickles?” “Why couldn’t we have one more week?”

Helping children whilst crying yourself, isn’t always effective.  Through the tears and struggle, we made it through the day. Daddy came home and we buried Mr. Pickles.img_1054

I will close this post by saying this, life isn’t easy. Pain comes and hearts that once beat strongly, are snuffed out. Exhaustion is getting the best of me so I will close. Part 2 will not be far behind.

May you find solace in the One who catches every tear in a bottle.  Psalm 56:8 “You have kept count of my tossings; put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book?”

I know we have been covered in prayer and seek that same solace.

Blessings,

Tara

 

 

 

What is rotting under the house!!?

This past week there has been a stench permeating our bathroom and bedroom. At first we thought someone “missed” the toilet. Then we thought perhaps there was a leak in a shower pan or the tub. Maybe a pea trap is plugged? Alas, it was not that sort of smell! We did smell check all over the bathroom and realized that seeping through the floor boards, was the putrid odor of something dead!

 We opened the windows, turned on candle warmers, sprayed Lysol (and whatever else we could find finally we lit candles about the house. Nothing really helped take away the unpleasant smell.

 As I sat there in that same rotten smelling bathroom, thinking about the parallel to sin, I was disgusted not only by the bouquet of death permeating my life and surroundings, but sorrowful for the things that the Lord is revealing to me about my life and the sins He finds as offensive as the dead carcass rotting under my home. Hidden sins that are locked underneath the darkness of my heart rotting my life. Sometimes, there are sins that we don’t even realize are there until the Lord reveals them to us! Resentment or hatred or lying may be the culprits? Possibly bitterness is eating away at our hearts? The list goes on and on! These things invade our lives, our homes, our marriages and our families.

What can we do about that awful smell?

 Did I humble myself  and go under the house to investigate and be confronted with the reality that what I see may just make me physically ill?  I have not!

Have I spent the time listening to the Lord and asked Him to point out the sins that have crept in and gotten sealed up without my realization? I had not until now.

 He wanted a very vivid picture for me to remind me that there is no reason for rotting sins to reside in my home, His temple.

So for the next several (I would like to say minutes, but let’s be honest here) hours, I asked God and  to reveal to me places that were rotting in my heart. I prayed and listened to His gentle revelations.

The verse “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.” Psalm 51:10 Was the gift He gave me to me and as I prayed to be cleansed I was spiritually cleaned. I asked Him to forgive me for accepting the stench and for allowing it to leach out into the rest of my life just as it had in my home.

 God, thank you for loving us despite our sins and though they are like filthy rags, you wash us white as snow. (Isaiah 1:18 “Come now, let us reason together, says the LORD: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.”)

Is there anything rotting under your house???

Fly Paper Mama

Are there times when in the distance, you hear someone calling your name? Are you actually listening?  Do you care?

Then you realize the person is right next to you, repeating your name and calling you. MOM! MOM! MOM! Can you hear me? I am talking to you. MOM?!”. Is there a frustration that builds as they pull you from your own blissful world of silence?

Being a stay at home mom can be a challenge at times. There is a constant barrage of questions and answers that trickle in through the calm. Constant redirection and correction are your tools. Little rears, little noses and little hands that all need attention NOW!

Little lips are kissing my arm like one of those water pecking birds.

lips

I am in the midst of doing some chore. The other two are speaking as they increase the decibel level by 10 so that they can be louder than the other to get my attention. The garden needs to be watered. Five piles of semi folded laundry are scattered in the living room. Dinner is in the oven and the dishwasher is in over drive.

Then someone announces, “The dog just rolled in horse poo mom and she wants to come in!”  

“NOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!! DON’T LET HER IN!!!”

“Hi Angel.” (In a very gushy talking to the dog voice. Those who have dogs, know what I am talking about!)

“OUT! OUT! OUT!”

“Mom, she wanted to say hi.”

“She can say hi from the door next time.”

(True story) 🙂

Do you feel like you just can’t listen anymore because you are so frustrated with life going on all around you?

Do you feel like Fly Paper?

flypaper

Turn this situation around to yourself.  Imagine you are with a friend or a spouse having lunch or a coffee.  You are chatting away only to realize they did not hear a word you said.  Shock and dismay are pretty common reactions here. Feeling unimportant to them is another.

I really like to speak and be heard. I really like to listen. I have to remember though, that even though my children are little, they are still little people. They do need to be heard. I am training them by my actions and reactions how to be adult listeners.

Am I showing them that is ok not to listen while someone is speaking to them?

OR

Am I making them feel special, because I am taking time from my busy day to demonstrate the same love that I want to be showered with?

There is a great responsibility before us as we raise children to be good listeners.

Lend your ear today.  Listen to what the little people are saying. 🙂

ear

 

Lord, let me be a good example to my children today. Guide me as I teach and instruct them in Your ways. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 James 1:19-20 NIV “My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20 because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.”