So there you are throwing your hand up to give me a high five and here’s me…..blink, blink, blink….letting your hand float suspended up high with nothing to come down and smack.
I said I was setting up my next post and I still am….oh yes…we will be talking about some weighty issues like passionate children, homeschooling, how I’ve been broken like a colt, and how merciful God is. BUT….there have been a few wrenches thrown in my gears the last two weeks in the form of SNOW DAYS, VISITORS, I am having a two day indoor consignment sale at my house this week and the fact my best friend and her family and another extremely dear family in our inner loop are moving to the Middle East this week as missionaries.
I have no time or emotional margin right now to dedicate to writing this post this week. I do promise next week…oh next week I will pour out my heart and mind on this. Thank you for checking in…I see you there in my visitors stats you faithful return checkers…. I see you there.
Thank you for your patience.
In the meantime here’s a couple cute picture of my kids. It’s always good to force feed people your children, they really appreciate that
This is what I am going to call a prelude post. As in….this one is setting up the next one. I actually wrote this post a hair over four years ago about Bennett. Oh my Benny Boy! I will be sharing what I have learned from this extremely refining child now that he is almost six but this post really gives the best microcosm into life with Bennett and frankly I was dying laughing reading back over life with him at 21 months old and how far we have come in some regards and NOT A STINKING INCH in other aspects. Please enjoy a little walk down memory lane from our families resident thespian, Bennett Wade. You will know where my next post is going to go after this and you will probably be picturing one of your children who also holds the emotional temperature in your house.
I love my son, I really really do. I could positively sop him up with a biscuit most days. He is so stinking sweet and handsome. From his little round hippo teeth/gap to his adorable smiley eyes. He is full of life and full of passion. HE LOVES to laugh, he LOVES to climb, he LOVES to move 24-7. He does NOT like when you tell him “no”, he does NOT like when you take something away from him, he does NOT like when you don’t give him his way 24-7. There is no guessing Bennett’s mood. Subtlety is not his strong point. Ryan and I joke that he is a special kind of jerk (sorry, we call em like we see em in our family) when the world does not revolve around him. He is a hitter and a thrower and shows an amazing array of emotions. There are days when I want to put a red bow on his head and put him on the curb….but those moments pass quickly and he is back to his affectionate, sweet self. He is a virtual pendulum.
“It’s BROOOOOOOOOOOOOOKE-ING MAMA!!!!!!!!!”
You have to imagine Rhett’s sweet little face curled and contorted in angst and frustration as dozens of little Legos fly out of his hands. Usually, for extra drama, he takes the few left in his chubby paws and chucks them on the ground in his three year old fury. His “tower” is now in a million pieces like his tiny little heart.
Depending on if this is the first Lego outburst of the day or the 20th I tend to meet his frustration with semi-patience, a sigh, and I do that super unflattering mom bend over and start picking up the pieces with a short but concise explanation, “Rhett, you can’t put the small Lego’s on the bottom, you need to put the big ones there.”
He looks at me with those giant doe-eyes rimmed with tears. “I’m sorry mom were you talking?” (he doesn’t actually say this but he looks as though he is thinking that.)
He pleads his case again, “IT’s BROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOKE-ING MAMA!!!!!!!” Big pouty lip sticks out.
I know I should correct his grammar but it is so darn cute when he says this, NOT cute when it is screamed however. He also calls the playground the “prayground” which is AHHH-dorable. Bennett used to call the dining room the “diamond room” and I couldn’t bring myself to correct that either because of the sweet factor and I felt super fancy eating in a DIAMOND room each night.
A few days ago I was picking up yet another round of shattered Lego dreams, I turned around and said, “I really wish you understood physics and engineering Rhett, it would make your Lego building experience so much more fruitful.” Then we talked about quadratic equations, how to solve world peace and what my next hair cut should be. Rhett’s super fun and intellectual like that.
As I sat there in a Lego trance fiddling around with the 25 pieces I collected while he gave up and moved on to the next toy I had a small epiphany. How many times am I like Rhett before the Lord? Instead of Lego’s it’s my life I am building. My little kingdom of Kelly.
I too tend to take the small, unstable bricks around me and force them to be my foundation. Let me shove a little pride over here, self-reliance over there. Let’s add a tiny dose of impatience and selfishness. Gonna put my STUFF on top of that, my busyness above that brick, my agenda above that one, oh yeah…. my lack of self control on the tippy top. There…now I’m ready to build my life and heart. Am I surprised when my lopsided tower comes crashing down at the first attack from the enemy?
Maybe it’s more like this. Maybe I am not necessarily living in the flesh. Im actually abiding in the spirit, foundation is more steady, a little wider than the tower I am building but then something major happens around me. An attack on a friend or family member. Their tower falls against my tower and I am feeling helpless to hold them and me up. I cry out to the Lord “It’s BROOOOOOOOOOOOKE-ing Jesus!”
Instead of being met with impatience or a sigh like I tend to react with. Jesus beckons us near to him with love and patience in his eyes. Instead of saying “I wish you understood engineering and physics Kelly”, he says “I would love to teach you about my mercy, goodness, and faithfulness through this. You don’t have to hold up their tower, I am here to do that. I want you to see that your life could be made infinitely more enjoyable and peaceful if you understood more about my character, my sovereignty, and my plan for this world, for your friend, for your loved one.”
Thats just it. When the storms of life blow in around and on me my foundation is tested. If I am tossed about like a wave in the sea then it’s time for me to get honest about my theology of God. If I say he is trustworthy then why am I hemming and hawing in a frenzied state of worry? If I say He is for my good and not my destruction then why to I jerk back the wheel of control and start to go it alone? If I say my God IS LOVE, then why do I look to others for my worth and value?
I’m SO grateful that the Lord does not weary with my outbursts about my life being broken. When I’m face down on my kitchen floor kicking and screaming over a situation that burdens me or my heart is broken for a loved one I don’t have to bathe myself in hopelessness.
We are promised the good life, not the easy life. Maybe we need to understand what the good life means. I am assuming you, like me, take the word good to mean…pretty perfect or easy. Anything less than that we start to immediately question where is God, what is He doing, why would HE do this? We see him as this cosmic carrot dangler that puts good things, people, situations in front of us and snatches it away at random and replaces it with things like financial ruin, divorce, cancer, death, estrangement, job loss, car accidents, affliction…really whatever difficulty we find ourself or someone we love encountering has that feeling of a carrot snatched away.
You parents—if your children ask for a loaf of bread, do you give them a stone instead? 10 Or if they ask for a fish, do you give them a snake? Of course not! 11 So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask him. Matthew 7:9-10
I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world. John 16:33
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27
In everything we do, we show that we are true ministers of God. We patiently endure troubles and hardships and calamities of every kind. We prove ourselves by our purity, our understanding, our patience, our kindness, by the Holy Spirit within us, and by our sincere love. 2 Cor 6:4,6
You know, a lot of days, living peacefully or joyfully feels like it might as well be physics. It seems so far above my pay grade that I impatiently and resentfully toss my Legos to the ground with God and say “It’s broke, it’s too much for me, I don’t want to do this the right way, I want to do it my way.” The right way is usually the slower and more refining way. It causes me to set myself aside and lay face down at the cross. It puts me in proper perspective before the ALMIGHTY CREATOR OF THE UNIVERSE. I see that if I stick with it…really put in the work and the time to learn these foundational attributes such as loving my enemy, forgiving those that hurt or betray me, offer a cup of cold water to those in need, serve without credit or kudos, live sacrificially, put others first, etc…. There is a bountiful harvest of good that my heart, soul and mind reaps that allows me to transcend the circumstance, get perspective, feel equipped for the battle, and because I believe REALLy believe this is for my good or good will eventually come from it I can yoke with Jesus through the process of trials and tribulations. It doesn’t make me super human. I still grieve the AWFUL circumstances I come face to face with or the injustice that liters our world but I have hope and assurance that ALL chaos, sin, death and destruction will be ordered once again in the completed work of Christ’s return.
But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Peacemakers who sow in peace raise a harvest of righteousness! James 3:17
Can we unfurl our grip from the blocks of our lives instead of slamming them into place the way we think they should go? I mean Rhett is very confident of his building skills. I watch him and I try to hand him the right ones or suggest a block and I am given the cold shoulder. Do we see our Lord standing there? He is offering us life, abundant and good life. He has the brick perfectly formed, sturdy, solid, paid for by His blood. He knows that if we build upon HIS solid rocks we will be UNSHAKEN, unbreakable, and world changers for HIS name and HIS renown. I’m so all in on learning this.