The stairwell down to our basement has a mantel full of pictures from our past. From college days to wedding to pre-child ski trips and post-child trampings through fall leaves, we have nearly two decades covered.
There is one in particular that tells a certain story.
The night before our college graduation, we gathered, my girlfriends — who had shared bathrooms and books and boyfriend stories for 4 years –gathered with our parents to celebrate at a friends’ cabin home. The next day we would hide our identities behind matching caps and gowns and walk uniformly through what would be the last stage of life that I’ve known to be uniform.
This picture on my mantel is a ..read more
[ this post is a continuation of Love, Unnaturally, from yesterday]
The tears of years break surface when we least expect them.
We were all packed in, beginning our cross-country trip back home, the home they’d now known for months. Out of the blue the one most steady in our grip burst the silence of six sets of eyes absorbing the great-wide highway’s unfamiliarity with her cries.
“Why did she leave me?” she sobbed.
I absorbed the shock. This was a first for her. What triggered this?
“Why did my birth mommy leave me?” she bellowed, her tears turning to wails.
And while I was formulating my response the one behind her joined in, wet-cheeked already, himself. Sympathy or empathy, I wasn’t ..read more
I knew it would.
I’d been here before.
The most beautiful part of waiting is receiving His response after your heart chose expectation instead of fear. I’ve been in both shoes, frequently, and choosing the former always makes the bitter taste sweet.
She was in the middle of her contribution to our dinnertime banter, tentatively trying her hand at directing what she had, once, only just observed. Her “how about, Daddy, we …” wasn’t our typical fare but we jumped on board with her suggestion. She scootched herself against the back of her chair and sat up, tall. She wore ownership.
And as the quickened chatter (which happens when life just produced a day with oh-so-much to recount) continued, time ..read more
He is their strength in the time of trouble. Psalm 37:39**
When I am not, You are.
Where I fail, You perfect.
I teeter and You stand, bold, strong.
I fold, crumple and weep when poked and prodded by life’s mishaps — and You scoop me up and sing over me.
Father, You are all that I’m not and the end of me is where You begin. This is beauty. You breathe promise into my void.
I worship You, oh God of strength, whose strength could not be fully activated in me without my weakness. You replace me with You — at the moment my flesh might deem least likely — and I have all that I need and, even, want.
Forks clanked noisily to their plates as bare feet scampered across the floor and out the door, their mouths too full with food to squeal.
The moment we’d been awaiting for 10 days finally happened.
The nest we’d been fostering, unknowingly for some time, now housed a family. The incubation period was over, our robin’s eggs had hatched!
I watched the flesh stretched across these nascent babies wrinkle as their mouths released yawns their eyes couldn’t yet see. They were as small as my finger, some only hours old. They nestled, flesh against flesh, as if the shells that contained their frames never existed.
Their world was one I’d never stopped to consider.
My children marveled at a sight that was a ..read more
“For our God is a consuming fire” Hebrews 12:29. It quietly tugged at me from where I’d scribbled it in my moleskine journal as I re-directed her vegetable-peeling strokes in the direction away from my Bible, already stained cucumber green.
This moment was humorous to me.
I pray in secret before the sun comes up to have a primal life-devotion which moves the heart of God — for His fire to consume all of me and for my life to spread His glory … and I spend my daylight hours separating laundry, cleaning toilets, training hands to peel cucumbers and teaching mouths to say “will you forgive me” and “thank you.”
The quick snapshot reveals anything but glamour in ..read more
The scene was familiar, only slightly more intense than the last time. As our house becomes her home, what’s buried down deep begins to find its way to the surface. Pain has a buoyancy.
When I came upstairs he’d been holding her for nearly an hour, my child, unrelenting. She scratched his arms and resisted his hold with shame-infused adrenaline, fighting the very thing her body most craved. She wanted to reject him before he could reject her, the inevitable outcome in her mind to a misstep, corrected by Daddy. The undercurrent of her everyday outlook was loud today.
These are the days we are learning to celebrate, not avoid. The night of mourning always promises a new ..read more
She shared my kitchen space with her monogrammed apron which, already, was too small for the body she’d grown up and out of months ago.
This moment reflected her heart.
She cut lettuce and stirred sauce and mimicked what she’d seen me do. She’d learned so much in 9 short months. But hours earlier, He’d pulled back the curtain on her mystery, to me. Her heart was too small for her body. Lanky limbs reflecting her age disguised a heart much younger in years. We poured out from the wells He was pouring in, but her heart could receive only droplets.
She couldn’t comprehend love. She wasn’t yet growing in love because she had never learned the art ..read more
As my husband says, I’m not the “bloggiest” of bloggers.
With hearts-needing-tending under our roof, with 15+ years of combined fatherlessness to work through … as well as the many years of my own living like I had no Father, I’ve consciously made this blog to be a quieter place.
But your thoughts are warmly welcome over email!
I may not personally respond to each email, however, know that your stories are a treasure to me. I absolutely value how He is writing on each of your lives and love that He lets me play one itty-bitty part in His grand opus in you.
This is my small way of making my little ones, my bigger one, and the biggest ..read more
She, supposing Him to be the gardener, said to Him, “Sir, if You have carried Him away, tell me where You have laid Him, and I will take Him away.” Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to Him,“Rabboni!” (which is to say, Teacher). – excerpt from John 20:11-18**
You conquered the world’s limitation, and You called her by name.
She stumbled, unknowingly, to the rock which held resurrection’s imprint. She hadn’t received Your words of promise. She lived her years beside You, but didn’t understand You. She wept for a loss that was, instead, great gain.
Mary’s easter Sunday was still the dark, black night.
This is the flesh You came to save.
You didn’t chastise her lack of expectation ..read more