Where Is My Security?

L11UPufHow many times do we look for our security in our husbands? I know, what a question to start with. But it was something I was dealing with only a yr ago! I didn’t understand what was in my heart or why I responded the way I did in many situations. I didn’t know I was seeking my security in my husband, instead of in God!! As I have watched other wives struggle, I can identify. I was there!!

What changed? Him or me? It is rather obvious, it was ME!!! He didn’t need to change. God made him just how he was suppose to be – PERFECT!! For ME!

Why could I not accept him, accept his love, the way he loved and the way he handled life? Why did I think I needed to change him? Why did I have to live in fear and doubt that this is where God wanted me?

Maybe I should start back at the beginning… To put it frankly – I lived in fear. It had a grip  on me I didn’t understand. The days leading up to our wedding were so full of fear. If someone would have offered an easy way out, I would taken them up on it. But with trembling heart, I committed my life to his. The only thing I held on to was the way God had brought us together. I knew deep down in my heart, I was to marry this man.

Our honeymoon was fraught with tears. I didn’t know what to do with his unconditional love. I craved it, yet feared it! It was all so bittersweet. We didn’t understand in the least bit what was happening in my heart & my emotions.

As the years sped by, we lost 2 babies & had 3 boys in 4 yrs. We poured ourselves into them. I was learning to love him. But still feared so many things about ‘us’.

As I watched other wives relate & interact with their husbands, I marveled at the carefreeness of their relationship. The way they interacted with each other and most of all the love that seemed to show for all to see. One thing I could never understand, was how a wife could go to the door after being apart for the day, and greet her hubby with a hug & kiss. Me? I would stay away, and let him come find me!! Oh, I would try it for a while. But that fear of love, of him, of myself, was so big!! I could never overcome it. At least not on my own!!

I didn’t understand my heart. I wanted to completely trust my husband. I wanted to freely love my husband and be able to love up on him, the way God intended. And many times I thought I was. But something would always come up. I was never completely free!! But what was it? I could never lay my finger on it.

DSC08272 smThings escalated and came crashing fall of ’12. I finally told him we either needed to go get help somewhere together or I was leaving to go find help. My heart was a mess. My relationship with God was a mess. I was ruining my relationship (what was left) with my husband, with those around me and with my boys. I knew things needed to change.

God brought about an amazing series of events in the next few yrs, that only HE could orchestrate!! A couple days being alone (for me), a slip-slop week of counseling that gave us a few tools to use to work on understanding each other. And then a pregnancy when we least expected it, (he was born fall ’13). Spring of ’14, I started renewing a friendship with an old friend from years ago. It was obviously God’s prompting!! A visit to their home began opening our eyes to the darkness around us and in which we were living.

The next 8 mths were rough as we tried to understand what they were showing us. I say rough, but in many ways it was better. We had a renewed hope for ‘us’. God was working in ways we had no idea of what all He had in-store for us.

ffc82cc26328fb3b35ed791a4167f142Then in Jan. of this year, we went to a conference of some intense teaching for 4 days. Little did I know just how BIG this weekend would be!! My eyes were being opened in ways I never had seen before. I realized for the first time, that my life was NOT surrendered to God. He was not LORD of my life like I thought. I was living in so much fear, hurt, pain, believing lies and burying so much stuff, I couldn’t let God into my life!! I realized I was not a Child Of God’s!! And one night I finally surrendered my whole life to Him!! Oh glorious freedom and victory!!!

Our marriage immediately began to heal!! It had NEVER in all our married life been like this!! It didn’t take days of counseling or weeks of working through things. It just took me surrendering my life to God to change things. I was FINALLY free of so many chains and so much bondage that had held me back. And I sit here weeping as I remember those days. Living in the bondage, and the roughness of our marriage. And marvel at how God has redeemed us!! Healing our relationship in ways we never even asked, as we never thought it possible! It is so beautiful!!!!

DSC08277Over the weeks and months, I kept noticing small things that changed. And it was not on my hubby’s part, but on my part. Or he was changing because I had changed? I didn’t keep track of who was changing where. But I no longer feared hearing his footsteps coming to the door.  I no longer resented his ‘coming from behind’ hugs that felt like he was asking for more later. I didn’t desire for him to change or to make changes. I could love him, in the bedroom, freely and without reserve. I was loving him for HIM!!!! We began the honeymoon we never had! And we were still living our day to day lives. We had 4 boys who got splashes from our love, and they were blossoming.

And in all of this, I freed my husband!!! I had put so much pressure on him to preform to please me, he was not himself. He worked so hard to keep me ‘happy’, but it was still never enough. He was so worn out emotionally, spiritually and physically. I was a very leaky, holey bucket into which he could never pour enough love, time, you name it… it all went right through. So yes, he did change. But not because I was asking him to.

6bba09b0047434b293706db50649cb50When my security was placed in God’s Hands, THEN is when I was no longer looking to my husband to be the perfect person to fill that void in me. God took away my fears – fear of man, fear of love, fear of hurts/being hurt, fear of rejection… this list goes on!!! In finding my freedom in Christ, I became free to love God, love others, trust others and let others be who God wants them to be!! I am blessing my husband without realizing how much love is splashing over onto him. It’s contagious and just keeps growing and multiplying!!!

And I need to share the BIGGEST God blessing’!! I am due with #5 in 11.5 wks, Oct 15th. God gave us this gift, right over my own New Birth!! And He is blessing us with a little girl after 4 boys. Many, many tears have been shed as I look back at the past. I feel so humbled, so unworthy of this gift God is placing in our arms!! Many times I have ‘demanded’ things of God. Then was upset when I didn’t receive them or felt guilty when I did. This time, I truly see this as a gift!!!

God is an awesome God!!! And I marvel at my relationship with Him, at how He never gave up on me, and I can finally see Him as a LOVING Father!!! I know there is more to this story, another side of it. I am only sharing the marriage side right now.

And for those who love a Love Story, you can find mine here, Part 1.

Photo credits – JT Photography  Summer ’14

Posted in Husband, Inspiration, Love, Marriage | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments

Life on the Farm, It’s been 7 yrs!!

It is LONG past time to get this posted!! In fact I had a bunch of it written up and then lost it. Never like when that happens!! So here we go again… The boys are at Grandma’s swimming. My hubby is planning to grill pork steaks for supper, so I’ve got a few minutes to myself.

11This is what the farm looked like 7 yrs ago. It’s hard to believe we have been here that long. But we have. And many changes have been made. Some I didn’t like, others I don’t mind. But I love old buildings, so when it came to tearing some of them down… It was a bit sad. Some we didn’t have a choice. Like that big tree going down on the corner of the grainery. Pushing the whole building sideways. It pretty much had to go. And now the little garage is gone, the great big silo, that heifer shed on the very left hand side. They talk of taking down the other silos too. But I really bulk at that one. What’s a farm without silos?? It just doesn’t seem right!! And this… coming from a girl who said she would NEVER marry a farmer!!

1 20150628_181803This was taken, with my phone so not best quality, but as they were beginning to take the heifer shed down.

IMG_0109smThis was just beginning to tear down the silo… I didn’t think of videoing it. So duh!!! It was really neat!!

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Slowly, slowly pushing the top off.

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IMG_0125smIt made an awesome crash… with 4 guys leaning over to watch it crumple into a heap!!

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And this is where 2 boys watched the action…

IMG_0142smAnd where this little guy watches the action. He about could not have it that he could NOT go outside very often!! But once they started dropping those huge, heavy silo staves, I was not about to let him go out!!

2 20150702_074206I posted this pic on facebook the 2nd morning. There were guys taking down the grey shed, the milk truck picking up milk, the silo guys taking down the silo, a hobbled cow deciding if she should go for a swim and a 7 yr. old watching all the action!!

IMG_0144smThis was the 2nd day. They had some for platform inside the silo that they lowered as they went. And a pulley system for lowering the bands and other stuff they saved. The staves dropped into fresh sand with a thump I could hear inside the house. (Don’t ask how I felt to wake up to that in the morning, with no clue what I was hearing!!) Then some of the guys would save out the good ones, piling them on skids.

IMG_0155smIt was about in here that they couldn’t save any more. And the whole one side they didn’t save either. The blocks were full of fine cracks. So they were not able to save as many as they were hoping to. So things went pretty fast from here on out! They popped bands, and then just knocked out blocks from fairly low, letting lots of staves crash.

IMG_0160smGetting ready to knock out the last of the walls, loading up what they could haul home and cleaning up the mess…

IMG_0161smWhat my view to the barn looks like now… Well, that end piece of the heifer shed is gone now. Still waiting for them to take down one last small section.

So Sunday I went out to take pictures… this is all going to be changing again…

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Pile of rubble behind where the silo was. Waiting to be crushed and used for fill. The neighbor up on the hill (hard to see) right above that pile of rubble (pic on right), is the one who took down the heifer shed. He repurposes old wood.

IMG_0164smSo now we have heifers right inside the barn, in an empty calving/sick pen.

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We have heifers at the back end of the barn, in some empty stalls penned off.

IMG_0174smAnd we have heifers out in the dry cow lot, in a penned off area.

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And these are the heifers in another old shed. In fact the other week, we were just sitting down to eat supper. And were trying to quiet the boys down to pray. When Delvyn really started telling everyone to quiet down!! I could tell he was listening to some strange and strangled cow sounds. And soon he was bolting for the door!! Well, Dad stops to put shoes on, the boys don’t. So they beat him to the heifer shed. Soon I see Delvyn running back through the yard, through the office, through the barn for the skidsteer. And 2 little boys, slow walk back towards the house. And then I knew it was bad. If they don’t even stay to see the action, they can’t stomach whatever is going on. So I decided to head out there with Karson. By then, the worst was over.

And they were fixing up the broken row of headlocks. For some reason a section of headlocks broke off, keeping 2 heifers entangled in the locks, one basically on top of the other.  Just a few minutes longer and the story would have been completely different. We were so thankful it happened while we were home. As it was, the 2 heifers were shook up, and needing some  R & R, but nothing major!! They walked away!! I think the rest of us were about as shook up as they were though too.

IMG_0192smAnd I had to smile at this scene. A certain 6 yr old loves horses, and he has this saddle that he tries to ride many places. Guess this is a great place to ‘store’ it. Although when it began to rain the other day… he made fast tracks to get it!! No he does not ride it way up there…

IMG_0184smAfter walking around the farm, I went for a walk up the road. This is way across the fields…

IMG_0186smA bit closer to home… on the far right is my in-laws farm. Now you know why the boys are *always* over at Grandma’s?? It’s just across the corner!!!

Anyway… WAY too much time has passed!! The boys are back home (at least when they play on the slip & slide they smell clean and soapy even if they are still dirty!), the grill is fired up, my rice is cooking and I need to get off. We have some fun family plans for this evening… FINALLY getting the boys rewards for saying their memory verses at church one Sunday. They each won $5 gift cards to Culvers. And then the park or something else fun like that.

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The Cow in the Oven & Other Random Tails…

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One day Collin was pulling his lunch from the oven, and for some reason Rylen had thrown a small plastic cow at Collin at the same time. It hit him on his head and of course went right into the oven. Oh, my, you would have thought the house was on fire!!! At first I couldn’t figure out what was going on… Until between the breathy words I figured out there was a cow in the oven!! And why would it land in some easy place to retrieve it? Of course it had to slide right down in the vent thing on the bottom of the oven. And it took some digging to get the little thing out. I was just thankful we had been using the broiler and not the oven part. So it was not in danger of melting, and it was only a tad warm in there.

I often have to listen really hard to discover whether they are talking of actual barn happenings or just playing. Collin just walked in the door from doing calf chores and asked, ‘Anyone else calve?’ I was like, ‘Whhaa?’ *you are the one who just walked in from the barn* ‘Oh, yes, # so & so, and # so & so just did’, Jevan replied. (I forget the numbers that were rattled off.) ‘Ok. What else has been happening?’ ‘Well, these need to get trimmed. And these are just dried off.’ ‘You know, I think we should just start over!!’ Ok, then. Farm reorganization coming right up!! I’ll send Karson in. He makes an awesome tornado!!

‘You can tell the difference between a human & a cow. A cow goes a whole lot faster!!’ -Collin

‘When the computer wakes up, it’s gonna be gassy!!’ – Jevan, on a Sunday morning

One day the boys were playing ‘prisoner’. One gets beaten, I didn’t catch why. But then he is thrown into jail (a nearby closet). Soon I hear, from the dark recesses of said closet, ‘God! Jesus! Please help me!!!’ ‘Jesus’, he says again loudly, ‘are you there?’ The guard quickly rushes in & hauls him off to be beaten again. (I’m never sure what to think of re-enactments like this!!)

One day I told Jevan, ‘Tomorrow you are gonna go with Dad to get heifers.’ ‘Yeah, I know. We are gonna get Steer’. ‘A steer? There aren’t any steers up there,’ I said surprised! He knows what is raised at the heifer raiser! ‘Mom, it’s Steer!! A heifer who is so mean, we call her Steer!!’

Karson was fussy and grumping around. Finally Jevan had enough and firmly told him, ‘Karson, we are farmers. And farmers don’t cry!!’ -May ’15

Overheard while sitting in the van one evening, waiting on dad… ‘When I get married, and after my wife has my kids, I’m just gonna get rid of her.’ -Unnamed

‘WHO farted??!!!?!????!!! Why didn’t you just empty your tank at home?? -Unknown

‘Jevan, time to go to bed.’ Down the steps he goes. 2 minutes later he comes back up… ‘I don’t know what to do!’ ‘Ummm, GO to BED!!’, I said. ‘OH’, he replied!

Flash flood warnings out tonight! In the vicinity of 2 corners and stainless caverns. The was a large leak in faucet city that overfilled Lake Stockpot. Mr. Spider and Miss Dust Bunny have lost their homes. Many rushed to the scene to redirect water into proper channels, one of which, they unclogged the dam. The worst of it is over. (Thanks Collin!)

These are a bunch of quirps I have saved for a long time… no clue on dates. It’s been so long ago that I put them in here, I had to find them from many odd corners of my house.

And I just found a whole bunch more… these at least have the month and yr added to them. 🙂 So that helps… I had to go back digging on my blog for my last ‘Homemade Humor‘ posts and make sure I didn’t repost things. And I was having merry fun rereading all the things those little boys of mine said. My dad loves reading these, and he made mention of them again today. So I thought it time to do another post of them. I don’t write stuff down nearly like I used use to. For one, they are getting older and the childish humor just isn’t there as much. But the BIG humor is coming…

Friday, the day after we got home from our trip to CO, Collin came in with a silly grin on his face and I knew he was up to something, but I had no clue what. ‘Mom, he said, ‘Grandpa’s have a Kabota’. ‘Umm, yeah’, I replied. ‘Where do you think I have been and how long do you think we were gone? Of course they have a Kubota.’ ‘I’m serious Mom!! They do.’ ‘So what’s the joke?’ I finally asked, realizing he had more up his sleeve. ‘They got a Kabota mower now too.’ He said with a merry laugh as he chortled his way out the door!! -June ’15

Anyway now for the quirps I’ve been saving for over a yr… er, 2 yrs!

I can’t see!! I got salt and pepper in my eyes!!! -Collin 4-30-12

There was a stray cat that showed up at our church one evening during revivals. It was obviously a house cat, she had a flea collar and a little collar with a bell. The children were all out playing, petting and holding her before the service. She snuck in the door a couple times with unsuspecting peoples. Soon after we were seated in our bench, Rylen looks at me with a silly grin and says, ‘I die meow.’ *he pats his stomach and licks his lips* ‘Eat meow, it nummm yum’. I figured he’s either really hungry or just plain gross!!!! -Rylen -May ’13

Mom, when I a high boy, I unna caught a doe! (High boy- Big boy. Hunt a doe.) – Rylen

Mom, when I a high one, I get a bue (blue) un (one) and go brummmm! (He wants a blue pickup when he grows up. -Rylen -Spring ’13

‘Make Jevan get down’. ‘Why?’ ‘He’s bugging. And I hate bugging me. It makes my head go wrong!’ -Collin -Spring ’13

I gave Jevan the bowl and scraper from making frosting to lick and enjoy. (The scraper was the kind the handle slides off of.) Collin comes along and sees him licking just the spatula end of the scraper, no handle in sight. ‘Jevan’, he exclaims, ‘You ATE the STICK?!?!?!’ -Collin -Spring ’13

‘Rylen, you are wearing my shirt’. ‘Uh uh!’ ‘Yes, it used to Jevan’s after it was mine. you know back in 1983!!’  -Collin -Spring ’13

Jevan reaches for a black marker. ‘Jevan, is your favorite color black?’ He just grins and starts to color his stars a deep black color. ‘Do you think starts are black?’ *Giggle* ‘If stars were black, you wouldn’t be able to see them.’ ‘Yeah! he replied, ‘Just open them up and you can!!’ -Jevan -Spring ’13

Rylen’s favorite sayings…

You tell him something he thought no knew about, or he tried to hide, etc, he says, ‘How hmm (you) know?’

If he wants to do something by himself he is quick to tell you, ‘No man help me!!’

We finally got him to start saying ‘Thank-you’ but it comes out- ‘Fank me’! -Spring/Summer ’13

He dearly loves his baby sibling growing within my belly… A lot of mornings he will crawl into bed with me, pat my stomach and say, ‘G’Morn-in’ Su’shine. Time ‘ake up!’ -pregnant with Karson -Summer ’13

After asking about the baby and what it’s doing and such in my belly. I told the boys it’s just sleeping and floating in water in there. Rylen’s eyes get big and he says, ‘En a BOAT in der??’ -Summer ’13

Jevan was fiddling with Collin’s octopus, and suddenly he says ‘Collin. I have something to tell you.’ Collin comes over and says, ‘I did something too.’ And at the same time they tell each other, ‘I took a leg off the octopus’. (This was one of those things that absorb water and grow the longer it is in there. And they were both feeling guilty for tearing off a leg.) -Aug ’13

‘It’s raining!’ ‘Good, we need the rain.’ I said. ‘But I don’t see any rain drops.’ – Jevan – 9-’13

After noting the mess of toys, bikes etc. across the lawn, I commented to the boys, ‘This place sure looks like it has kids living here.’ ‘They all looked at me funny, so I explained what I seen. Jevan dryly remarks, ‘Yeah, but we should be piggies.’ – Jevan -9-’13

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Feeling Incredibly Thankful and Blessed

20150613_163002There are times you wonder if God really is working…

I mean, others tell you they see changes, see growth, see progress. And it is so encouraging! But when you are the parent it is hard to see your child’s growth and changes. You are in the nitty-gritty of life, teaching, correcting, building up, and so many times it seems like there are more steps backwards than forward!!

I have known I did not have the heart of my oldest son, age 10. And it hurt. It was for more than one reason. One beings my health was poor for so long, many others stepped into my role as ‘mom’. It hurt to see him go to others the way he should be going to me, but there wasn’t much I could do. And then, my heart wasn’t right towards him either. I had so much pain, hurt, and fears. I really didn’t know how to train him, or keep and guide his heart.

But for the past few months, I have seen slow progress, changes, that made me really hope his heart was turning towards me.

Today, God showed me just how much his heart has turned towards me. I know he can feel my love in ways he never did before and he wanted to show me his love!! I literally got choked up when he came in with his gift for me. Seeing his brilliant smile, his heart full of love for me – his MOM!!!

The 4 boys went with Grandma to a Grand Opening for a bulk food store half hr away. I sure enjoyed my time alone, and got lots done! But I was happy to see then come home again. I didn’t notice what Collin had done, just seen him walking back out of the flowerbed. Then about the time he walked in the door, I seen a new, HUGE hanging pot of flowers on the flower pole in the flowerbed.

20150613_162946He quickly asked, ‘Mom, did you see what I got you?’ ‘Yeah’, I answered. ‘They are really pretty!! And it’s so big!!’ ‘Mom, I didn’t get you a birthday gift, (which was back in April), so I told Grandma I’m getting you these!! It only cost $39.99!!’ ‘Oh’, I said in surprise! ‘Maybe you should go get your money to pay Grandma back then.’ To which he happily went to retrieve the cash.

She was surprised when he handed her the money. But I knew it was what he wanted to do!! When he came back in the door, he was beaming again. I looked at him, and he came towards me. ‘Collin’, I said, ‘you don’t know how happy you just made me!!! I love those flowers and I LOVE you!!’ He gave me a big hug, melting into me.

And the tears just flow now. I am so blessed. God knows just when we need these ‘God Hugs’!! The encouragement to keep going, we are doing the right thing. No matter how hard it is, no matter how much opposition we get from the devil. God IS working in my boy’s hearts!! And I am so blessed and humbled that He has entrusted me with 4 boys to raise & guide into Godly men. It is not of me, but God working through me. I could never do it without Him or without my wonderful husband who is doing an awesome job raising them too.

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Can I Be A Child? With No Fear?

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Lots of thoughts have been rolling through my head… so much to learn. So much to think about. So much to grow in. So much I see needing done in my own life, not to mention the lives of my children. And yet, I know how much God isn’t expecting me to attain perfection right now. I can’t expect that of my children either.

The other day I had to smile to myself as a scene played out in the living room, while I was in the kitchen making breakfast. (And I hope someone doesn’t mind me using them. 😉 ) And I couldn’t help but make correlations to it and our lives as Christians.

We had a special guest spend the night here Wed. night. The boys had been highly anticipating her arrival. Waiting all day. And randomly sitting out by the road, willing her to come. (They couldn’t seem to understand it would be after supper, in reality bedtime until she came!!) But that didn’t seem to stop them from talking about her. Looking forward to every little aspect of her coming. They talked about all they would tell her, everything they wanted to show her and whatever else they could think of.

Well, all but one child was sleeping when she finally came that night. So in the morning there was LOTS of happy chatter in the living room as they filled her in on all the happenings in their lives since they had last seen her.

Then Karson had woke up, late, as he has been this past week. The boys blasted back to his room to get him. They wanted him to share in their joy as well. And couldn’t wait to bring him out to this special guest. I right away told them not to push him. He would probably not remember her. And she even told the boys to give him time. Well, Karson watched his brother’s excitement, happy chatter, and had no fears!! He climbed right into her lap. And enjoyed all the happiness too.

As I thought about all this, it was like God was gently showing me a few things. And I was blessed. So I’ll try to share them with you too.

How many times am I actually like my boys? Anxiously waiting, anticipating and longing to spend time with Jesus. Do I look forward to that? With as much enthusiasm as they were? Do I lay aside all cares of time, and spend time preparing myself, as they did?

They had no fear!! No worries about how she would respond to them. What she would think of all their childish ways, or the mistakes they made. They chattered over each other and around her. They knew she would love them just as they were. They didn’t have to perform! I can be the same way with Jesus. No fears! No performance needed!! He just wants ME!! Just as I am!!

Then when Karson woke up, he was pulled right into the excitement. He may not have remembered her. But the lack of fear in those around him, made him feel safe and secure. And he trusted this new person too. Are we like that to others around us? Is our excitement contagious? Does it make others desire that fellowship too? Do they want to know our Savior in a personal way? Or do they sense fears in our lives and it makes them question things? Hesitating to know Him as Lord.

Fear has been such a big part of my life, that I see it or the lack of it easily in others around me, mostly my boys. And how it affects so many aspects of ones life. The control it has over lives. Not to mention how easily it can still grasp hold in my own life again. I need to stay alert and be ready to fight those battles of fears, not allowing them to grow roots in my heart again. I can be secure in my position in Christ. I don’t need to fear others, what they may think, how they may respond… the list could go on and on. I can BE ME!! Who Jesus wants me to be!! I don’t need to perform for Him!! How sweet that thought is!! There is freedom in Jesus! Power in His Name!!

This song, ‘Whom Shall I Fear (The God of Angel Armies)’ has blessed me!!

I found David Wesley on Youtube this past week and have been so blessed by his songs. Check him out, you might find a blessing there for you as well.

Picture Credit

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Whose Goals? Mine or God’s?

BinocularEver since I have read about this in a book, it has been going round and round in my head and I can’t stop thinking about it. Which is a good thing. And I decided to try and share it here. I hope I can explain it so you can understand without me having to write the whole chapter of the book. ha

We all have goals in life, things we want to do, places we want to go, personal growth we want to see happen, and the list goes on and on. But some times our best and most well laid plans for our goals are not in harmony with God’s plans and goals. Probably what has most gripped me in reading this chapter was the example he gave, and I’m just gonna rewrite it here, so you can, hopefully, understand what I am saying…

Suppose a wife and mother says, ‘My goal in life is to have a loving, harmonious, happy Christian family.’ Who can block that goal? Every person in her family can block that goal – not only CAN, they WILL! A homemaker clinging to the belief that her sense of worth is dependent on her family will crash and burn every time her husband or children fail to live up to her image of family harmony. She could become a very angry and controlling woman or a defeated victim of life’s circumstances. Either option could drive family members farther away from her and from each other.

For so long I was there… When my health crashed and I was no longer able to be the Mom in my dreams, accomplishing my ‘goals’ in life. I got depressed as well as feeling like a victim. It was not pretty.

‘When you base your future success on something that can never happen, you have an impossible, hopeless goal. Your depression is a signal that your goal, no matter how spiritual or noble, may never be reached. We can be depressed for biochemical reasons, but if there is no physical cause, then depression is often rooted in a sense of hopelessness or helplessness.

“Depression often signals that you are desperately clinging to a goal you have little or no chance of achieving, and that is not a healthy goal.”

Since I shared the Mother example, I’ll stay with that, but it really can be applied to any area of your life. But suppose my sense of worth depended on how my children turn out. If they start choosing independence from what I had planned for them, what does that do to me? I will start to manipulate and control them. Instead of remembering that parenting is an 18 yr long process of letting go. ‘The fruit of the spirit is self-control, not child control.’

People who control others  believe their sense of worth is dependent on other people and circumstances. It is a false belief, shown by the fact that the most insecure people you will ever meet at the manipulators and controllers.

So what has spoken so strongly to me, is this…. If God wants something done, or has a goal for my life, nothing will block the fulfillment of that goal!! God will not assign me goals that I can not achieve! I have needed to distinguish the difference of a godly goal from a godly desire.

A godly goal is any specific orientation that reflects God’s purpose for your life and is not dependent on people or circumstances beyond your ability or right to control.

I have found so much freedom and a new JOY in life as I have let go of my expectations and goals of others. And have sought God’s goals for my life. My days are no longer a struggle, stressful challenge to get through. As I give each day to God, and let Him lead and direct ME, I can be who He wants me to be. Not who I am trying to make myself out to be, or trying to make my family be, by coming in line with my goals, causing strife and discord.

‘Trials and tribulations can actually be the catalyst for achieving God’s goal for our lives, which is our sanctification.’

My one and only goal is to become the wife, mother, & Child of God that God wants me to be!! I want to allow difficulties to refine my goal of being the woman God wants me to be!! Every thing else has to come through God’s filter. If it doesn’t happen, I am learning not to stress about it. My days are sweeter, easier and joyful. And no, I have not ‘arrived’!! It is still a daily laying it down as I learn.

Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have it’s perfect result, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. James 1:2-4

*Excerpts from ‘Victory Over the Darkness’ by Neil Anderson

Photo Credit

Posted in Randomness | 1 Comment

::Sharing my Heart::

roseIt has been on my heart for a while now, and I really felt God ask me to write last wk, but it some how never got done. For one I am not sure how to say what I am feeling, and it always scares me to put my heart out there. I have always protected my heart, and guarded it very closely over the years. Life moves on, and I am growing, changing, allowing God to work in areas of my heart that I have kept even from Him. Although I would have told you God has complete control of my life. It really would not have been true. And I would not have really known that most of the time.

For years I have struggled with trust. Some of the closest people to me, and some very close friends, hurt me. My trust in people was shattered. I could share up to a point, and then that was it. Even so I talked. A lot! I often controlled the conversations. Lulls of silence bugged me, I felt insecure, I didn’t know where the conversation would go. So I would talk to fill the void. I find it hard to listen to others. And I am not proud of that fact. It is something I am working on, with God’s help. And it is one reason I had been silent so long, with few scattered posts in the past couple of years.

In many ways I felt like my faith was shaken. I was struggling in trusting God. The One person I should be able to tell everything to, I could not open up my heart and pour it out to Him. The one who cares the most!! And this is an area I am still growing in, and find hard too often.

I fought depression most of the years I was battling lyme. It was very hard to be positive and think straight when my body was in such a mess. There were times it would be better for a while, but then it always went down again. And my spiritual life followed the ups and downs. Many times I thought I should just have faith, power through it. It’s just in the mind. I know I can overcome this. And I could for a while, but it too never lasted.

It was like so many of the different things I tried in my journey to finding healing and gaining my health back. The different things would work for a while, but always, it would never get to the core issue.

So spiritually and physically, my life would go up and down, up and down. It was so wearying!! It would drain me. Many times it was like a yo-yo, I would feel like I was learning and growing spiritually, and I would think ‘Yes, this time I finally passed the test.’ But then my physical body would crash. I would have no energy, and I couldn’t do the things a ‘normal’ mom should be able to do. And I would begin to feel discouraged and attacked again. And it does not help me in one bit to have my house falling apart around me. When things are a super mess and dirty, oh, it fairly drives me nuts!!! There is a certain level of mess that is ok, and needs to be ok when you have littles. But when the mess is taking over the house, I can get really grumpy!! (Just being honest here.)

Then there would be times my energy would be coming back up, and I would feel good. I felt like spending time with God. I had energy to pursue a relationship, and so I would and life would be good for a while. Then my body would crash again. It was like I would go around and around and around again!!! One way or the other it would hinge on each other. How I longed for stability. For a less mountainous road. Oh, I don’t mind hills, and curves and such. But when it is hairpin turns and craggy, rocky peaks with sharp drop-offs, – that was so hard to ride through in life.

So then enter a pregnancy, in Feb. ’13. Just imagine all the wild hormones then… My life was literally upside down. I did NOT know how I was gonna handle a baby when it took all of me to be mom to the 3 boys I already had. My hearts cry was that God would show me what I was to do!! Everything I had been currently doing to try to gain healing in my body was brought to a screeching halt. And frankly I was scared of the next 2 yrs!!

For this pregnancy we went to a different midwife. In our talking she fast realized I often felt depressed. And she had me take a questionnaire thing to see just how depressed I was. Let’s just say she was not impressed, I was even surprised at how bad my results were. So she kept a close eye on me. Since she didn’t really know my health history, she didn’t understand all I was going through or all I had went through. But she did an awesome job of being there for us and helping us work through some fears. And now looking back I realize there were many times my brain just felt too tired, and too fried, I couldn’t think straight or reason properly. Many times I just didn’t care. And yes, there were times I felt suicidal. My brain-fog was worse than I even realized at the time.

And then God brought Plexus into our lives. How I wanted to have the hope that this would be the answer. That this could be the means God wanted to use to bring order back into my body. Was I scared? Yes, I was!! How many things had I tried? How many things had we prayed over? So many times we felt God had lead us. And then we would wonder why my body would crash again. We don’t regret most of our ‘chases’, as we feel God would allow them to work for a while. And I wasn’t just letting my body go down hill for however long. I was active in seeking health, and each thing would help. It just was never enough. But Plexus, was it really different? I was not interested in another MLM. I had been a part of a couple such things and didn’t wanna do it again. But God wouldn’t let it rest. And we felt a peace to try it.

Little did I know just how much my (our) lives would be changed. Allowing my body to heal from the inside out, allowing my hormones to rest, recharge and heal, allowing my pain ridden body to relax, allowing my foggy brain to once again think clearly… oh the list could go on.

The biggest, and greatest thing I thank God for is my clear mind!! I no longer get overwhelmed so easily. I can roll with the punches of life. (Just ask my hubby.) Those steep mountains and sharp corners no longer throw me off track so bad. (I just get thrown to the curb, not over the side every time!) I am feeling God’s love and care like I never have before. I am s.l.o.w.l.y. learning to trust Him and other friends. I feel so much hope on the horizon. Like with God’s help I am finally emerging from the shell that used to be me. And I am learning to BE a new me.

Has Plexus changed our life and ‘fixed’ everything? No!! A million times NO!! Plexus is not some magic drink to be our savior!! We live in a fallen world. Our bodies are not perfect. The foods we eat are not the same foods they ate a hundred + years ago. We live in an incredibly toxic world. It’s full of disease and imperfections. We cannot, nor should we expect some little thing to be our ‘magic’ potion that heals us. Should we trust Jesus to heal us? Yes, I believe God uses many different ways to bring healing. Could God have healed me without Plexus? Yes, I believe He could have. Is there anything wrong with taking a product that helps a body deal with the fallen nature of man? I don’t think so. God asked us to take care of our temples. I am thankful He choose to restore mine as He has. And I’m thankful He is not done. My body is still healing, it has not been an overnight fix. I still have hip pain, I still have some skin rash issues, I still have tired days. I still find I feel better eating little to no gluten. And we still still greatly limit our sugar. I still feel strongly about eating a clean diet. I like organic, but it is more costly, so we do what we can. But I am just thankful to feel so much better, for the energy to teach my boys, spending time with them, doing fun things. (Who doesn’t have tired days? And with a 13 mth old who still has really rough nights… I would be dragging more than my tail by now before Plexus.

I like to think of Plexus as a tool. A tool to help your body, as you heal and restore where your body has failed, is over worked and worn down. You can’t take a good probiotic and keep eating tons of sugar and processed foods and expect to see results. You just can’t. You are what you eat, no matter what supplements you may be taking to counter act that. You can’t expect the Slim to control the blood sugar levels if you keep pumping in the sugars all day. It’s all common sense.

So that’s my heart. Or a chunk of it. I am still amazed at where I have been & where we have come… And it’s exciting to look ahead and wonder where God will take us! I no longer fear what the future holds, or have fear I won’t have energy to be with my family, or fear I will be taken from them long before my time.

I am thankful I serve an awesome God, who cares about me and loves me, more than I can ever understand!!!!

Posted in Faith, Health, Plexus | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Better Than My Best

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I prayed for strength, and then I lost awhile
All sense of nearness, human and divine;
The love I leaned on failed and pierced my heart,
The hands I clung to loosed themselves from mine;
But while I swayed, weak, trembling, and alone,
The everlasting arms upheld my own.

I prayed for light; the sun went down in clouds,
The moon was darkened by a misty doubt,
The stars of heaven were dimmed by earthly fears,
And all my little candle flames burned out;
But while I sat in shadow, wrapped in night,
The face of Christ made all the darkness bright.

I prayed for peace, and dreamed of restful ease,
A slumber drugged from pain, a hushed repose;
Above my head the skies were black with storm,
And fiercer grew the onslaught of my foes;
But while the battle raged, and wild winds blew,
I heard His voice and perfect peace I knew.

I thank Thee, Lord, Thou wert too wise to heed
My feeble prayers, and answer as I sought,
Since these rich gifts Thy bounty has bestowed
Have brought me more than all I asked or thought;
Giver of good, so answer each request
With Thine own giving, better than my best.

by Annie Johnson Flint

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Random Fall Update & Lots of Pictures

Time for another picture post, mainly for my sis again. But you all can enjoy them too. We now have 2 birthdays in the fall close together. Seems we like to do things by 2’s. Collin & Rylen’s birthdays are 2 wks apart in May. And Karson & Jevan’s are 2 wks apart too, Oct. 17th and Nov. 1st. Jevan never liked having his birthday so far from his brother’s, so it is nice to now have a birthday with a brother too.

Anyway… we will start with Karson’s first birthday. We had both sets of Grandparents and all aunts & uncles who were around. Which ended out being only my parents and then all the Martin’s.

karson bday1

Karson was enthralled with all the people, gifts and wrapping paper!! We just had a simple party, and I went with a ‘Jungle’ theme as I had found some party stuff on sale this summer, so just used that. I thought it turned out pretty good.

karson bdayIt’s hard to believe my baby is a yr old. We tried to get him to walk, but he is just not so interested. It seems so late, as the others were 9, 11 & 10mths when they started walking. Now at almost 13 mths, he is taking 3-5 steps all the time, and stands a lot. But is not walking yet!! Let him crawl… and he is like a low glider, he covers ground FAST!!! (Much to his brother’s displeasure!! Farms are like a magnet to him, he MUST wipe out ever cow that is standing on feet!)

11 Nov 14Then Nov. 1st on Jevan’s 7th birthday, Grandma wanted to update her grandchildren pictures. Let’s just say it was pretty much a disaster!!! Between it being really cold and a baby who was NOT impressed with picture taking in the leaves, a group picture wasn’t gonna happen. But I loved the ones I got of Jevan.

11 Nov 141We went to Pizza Hut with Marv’s. Cory is a few mths older than Jevan and they are Best Buds!!! Lys’ birthday was a few days later, so we brought 2 cakes and icecream along in. I have never had a birthday party at a restaurant before and I must say, it is pretty nice!! We didn’t have to clean up the mess. The waitress also brought out 2 cookie pizza’s for the birthday kids. And Jevan was unimpressed. That was NOT his cake!!

11 Nov 142Last week we butchered 7 pigs. It’s always a fun day, with friends and much laughter. It was a cold day, but we were done around 1. It always amazes me how fast work can fly with a group of people. And it sure helps as the children get older and can help more. The first time we did it Collin was a yr old & the oldest of the group was around 8. So our freezers are once again full of pig meat to enjoy this winter. All I have left to do is pumpkin pie filling. And I keep putting it off, I am rather tired of canning and am so ready to be DONE!

11 Nov 144On Thursday some of us got together to fill shoe boxes for Samaritan’s Purse. It’s always fun to do. Then afterward we played some indoor games with the boys. And a few girls who got involved. (Like me, jumping rope.)

11 Nov 143Collin was having fun learning to jump rope too, and seeing how high or low they could go!

There, I think that’s about all the pics, opps, forgot this one…

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Evidence of the 5 gallons of shell corn in my basement! I *almost* felt bad making them clean this mess up. But not bad enough. They had the basement quite er, em, a mess!! So now they have to play upstairs for a while again. Much to their displeasure. As I mentioned before, Karson delights in messing up their farms!!!

I have been reminded again these past wks, just how thankful I am to be feeling so good. And that I have energy to carry me from day to day and activity to activity. Before I could never have done all these things back to back like this and survived. Well, I might have survived but my family would have suffered, as well as my house, but relationships and upkeep of home would have been in sad states! I just love being able to bounce from day to day. Even though my nights are not totally restful yet either. Karson still bounces back and forth from sleep 9-4 or getting up every couple of hrs. He just really likes his mom.

Well, I must run… supper is ready and waiting. And everyone is hungry!! Um, so supper is over. The ‘men’ set off a bunch of old firecrackers that have been laying around here, just asking to be blasted off. Nothing like a {COLD} night outside to have male bonding. Now they are waiting on me so we can watch a movie… Do you know when the last time was that I watched a movie? I don’t either!! We are gonna watch Blind Side. Have a Blessed Sunday!!

 

Posted in Boys, Family Life | 2 Comments

Airing My Dirty Laundry

Towels drying on the clotheslineOr maybe I should say my ‘Clean’ Laundry!!! For those of you who have been with me for a long, long time, may remember my post on laundry and trying to get my towels to be absorbent. Well, I never really did get them to be very absorbent. I just tried to ignore the problem and pretend it wasn’t as bad as it really was. We just sorta lived with towels that didn’t soak up water so great and rags that pushed spilled liquids around until it finally gave into to soaking up the mess. Well, fast forward a few yrs, and I am cloth diapering my 4th son. All was well until he hit about 7mths old, and suddenly my diapers are no longer containing the wetness. And that causes major problems!!!

So began another search… This time FB, and the world in Pinterest has come to play big roles in research. And I think I have found the answer!! I am still struggling some with my diapers, but my towels and rags are amazing!!! I had been feeling for some time that my homemade laundry soap was not cleaning my clothes very good. But the thought of discontinuing my cheap soap wasn’t very exciting to me, especially living on a farm, I do LOTS of wash each week!!! Well, in my search & research, I found a group on FB called Fluff Love & CD Science. (If you don’t mind a lot of drama, the group is ok. I don’t follow it anymore, as I was just tired of all the action there.)

Wow, my eyes were opened and some of my thoughts were finally ok’ed. Like why do we have to use a special laundry soap just to wash diapers? I know back when I was a baby my mom never had 2 different soaps. Why should it matter what soap goes on diapers that touch a babies bum and what gets used on clothes that touch the skin on the rest of the babies bodies?? Hmmm, right?? I know some of the thoughts are on the absorbancy,but if it’s properly washed, our towels should be absorbent too right? If not, there is problems.

So… in their studies this is what they have found: (And it does line up somewhat with what I had researched before, dealing with hard water.)

Most regions of America has some degree of hard water. Often the only way we notice it is when we are scrubbing mineral deposits off our sinks, showers, or faucets. Many people don’t think about how it affects their laundry, especially if they are already using a good detergent with built-in water softeners.

When it comes to cleaning cloth diapers, hard water makes a difference. Those mineral deposits that build up around your water sources also build up in the fabric of the diapers in ways that wouldn’t concern you with normal laundry. A dingy shirt here or there is no big deal, but mineral buildup in your babies’ diapers can wreak havoc.

As mineral deposits build, they trap bacteria. That buildup leads to ammonia or barnyard stink issues, repelling or leaks, and even rashes or burns. Hard water deposits can greatly impact the absorbancy of your diapers. Many people mistake hard water buildup with detergent buildup (which is a myth) because they notice suds in their water long after the detergent itself should be gone. The good news is that no amount of detergent will keep fabric from properly absorbing, but when hard water traps residue, it can hold on to detergent like it does everything else and release residual suds. What you’re actually seeing is the effect of hard water on the fabric, and if it’s holding onto the detergent residue, you bet it’s holding on to bacteria as well. -Kinsey Marie -You can read the rest here.

It goes on to say about adding softeners to your wash routine as well, such as borax, calgon or washing soda. People have asked me, ‘But the homemade has the borax and washing soda in it.’ Yes, it does, but only like 1 1/2 c. of each in 5 gallons of water. They recommend adding like 1/2c. per load.

But first you need to get your diapers or towels back to square one and do a Mineral Strip!! And bleach soak. I was amazed at how white and clean my clothes and towels and diapers were!! Side note:I did not strip colors much, just as a precaution. It was a bit time consuming, but so worth it. We are loving our towels and white clothes again!!

mineral strip

You can also find more pins with info on my pinterest page here. That will save you from having to join the group page if you rather not. The bleach soak info is on my page as well.

So now I am buying either ALL Free & Clear or Foca. I can not stand the strong smells perfumes in laundry soap. Foca isn’t bad at all and is cheaper than the All. Now I just need to figure out how to keep my diapers from leaking out the sides. I am thinking it is compression leaks. So need to keep trying different things and see what I can figure out. So it goes… At least I never get bored.

Laundry Photo Credit

 

Posted in Cleaning, Home, Household Tips | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment