Friday, May 9, 2014

Be Mindful on Mother's Day

This Sunday is Mother's Day.  For many woman across the globe, it is a great day.

But for some it is a dreaded day.

The Lord has placed 2 women in my life who have inspired me is so many ways.  Their lives are lived not just in service to others but in a way that encourages others to seek truth in Jesus. What these 2 women have in common is they have not been able to have children.  According to society, they are not moms.  But I do not agree. They may not have given birth to children or raised children in their home, but both of them have had a huge positive influence on many children, touching their lives in a way than most mothers never will.

One friend I have already blogged about in this post.  But, I decided to introduce you to my other friend.  Of course I won't use her name. I just want to tell you a little about her and how she has inspired me.

Like I said, my friend has no children of her own and desperately wants them. She has experienced the painful loss of miscarriage. Her heart aches & yearns for children. So, you can understand why Mother's Day is a very difficult day for her.  She yearns for the day when she can be celebrated by her children.  She looks forward to the day when in church on Mother's Day they ask all mother's to stand and she can join the other mothers in the room.

While she waits for the Lord to give them children he has her very busy at a very difficult job.  She counsels young girls considering abortion.  While her heart is aching for a baby, she sits across the table from a young girl wanting to get rid of her baby.

Can you imagine the pain my friend experiences as she counsels with these young, very confused girls?

I can't imagine.

But yet she does it. It is important enough to her to push through her own emotions and do what God has called her to do.  She has amazing stories and testimonies by young women whose lives were changed. What she is doing is possibly changing whole generations.  The Lord is using her to save lives!

In addition to that, she also speaks in schools to students about the right kind of sex education.  She teaches unheard of concept today. She spends time with young people, pouring herself into them encouraging them, teaching them truth and equipping them to make wise decisions. For many of these students she is the closest thing to a mother any of them will ever experience.

The Lord is using her is such a huge way in the lives of so many students and young girls.  I'm so thankful for her.  She is such a blessing to me and has inspired me in so many ways to reach beyond myself and look for new ways to bless others.

I hope & pray that one day my friend will know the joy of being a mother. Until then, I love how she continues to do what the Lord has called her to do.

I encourage on this Mother's Day you to be mindful of those dear friends we all have whose dream of being a mom hasn't or will never come true. Maybe send them a special note or give them a quick phone call, letting them know how much you are blessed by their life.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Lessons from Charlie

Here is my view as I write.
Today is Charlie's 2nd birthday. Yes, I know...already!

He is very much a typical 2 year old boy. He loves to eat everything he isn't supposed to & not eat what he needs to. He is a boy of few words, but knows how to get his point across.  He is happier outside then inside (the reason for the sand table). He will take a bucket of cars over a book all day long.

Last year I blogged about the difference a year makes. The Lord has often felt very far away, but Charlie is our constant reminder that indeed he is also very close by.

I have said it many times before on here, but Charlie truly is the joy of our family. It isn't because he is the youngest.  God has used Charlie to teach our family many very important things.

1.  Dates are important to God.  15 years ago today is when the kids & I were in that horrible car accident that triggered a season of depression & panic attacks for me.  For many years we hated the date, May 7 because it always reminded us of what had happened. We do not believe it is coincidence that 13 years later the Lord blessed us with Charlie on that same day.  Now, May 7th is a day of celebration for us.

Sarah and Charlie near the site of the accident.

See the bent t-post? They never fixed it. We found Sarah laying under the post. That post saved her life. The suburban rolled over that post, bending it. She has no memory of the year before or the year after the accident.

2.  Joy is possible in the midst of difficult days.  Even though we were thrilled when we found out we were expecting Charlie, we were in the midst of a very difficult time and I was really concerned about having this baby.  I knew God had a purpose, but trusting his purpose was a totally different issue. Here is my post about what was going on at the time: You Have Given Me Greater Joy!  Little did we know the impact Charlie would make on our family. The Lord used Charlie to bring our family together during a trial that could easily have torn us apart.  He brought joy to our lives.

3.  God truly knows!  Not that I ever really doubted this, but ok...yes I have.  When I realized we would have to move unfortunately one of my first thoughts were not, "God knows what he is doing." It was more like, "Really? You are letting this happen now?" And yes.  I was upset with God.  If it were left up to me, I would never have chosen to have a baby at that time. I am so thankful it isn't left up to me. I can't imagine the blessings we would have missed out on if we had decided 10 kids were enough & made sure to not have anymore.  Charlie is proof we do not know, but God does. His timing is perfect. He could easily have given us Charlie several years earlier,but he didn't. He could have never given us Charlie at all.  In the eyes of many that would have been best.

I'm so thankful God knows what I need exactly when I need it!

When I begin to doubt God's timing or plans, I look over at Charlie and am reminded that God knows, He gives joy & everyday is important to him.  Suddenly, my doubts fade and my joy is renewed.

Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. Psalm 51:12

My latest lesson?  Sitting outside with your laptop while your boys play in the sand will result in sand all over & possibly inside your laptop. Not sure that was a good idea.