Saturday, November 1, 2014

Direction after acknowledgment

In His Great Master Plan, I think God wants us to have more children. You see, He pretty much placed an angel child in our laps via Naomi. She sleeps well, she eats well, she smiles constantly, giggles adorably, has great bed hair every morning, and wrinkles her nose when she grins. She is curious about everything, sprouted two teeth without a complaint, and loves the dog.  If she was ugly and screamed all the time we might be second guessing a second child.

But, OBVIOUSLY we've got this parenting thing down and our child recognizes the blessing she has in her parents and is showering us with thanks via cuteness and a great personality.

                                      Here is her old lady picture. Saggy, wrinkled skin and all.


This is her craaaazy eye face. (Name that movie)


Her first campfire experience! May there be many more!


Wook at that wittle face!!



The other day, I was proudly shoveling mixed vegetables, applesauce, and beef stew into her mouth. It was her first experience with the stew and she loved it. Applesauce. Yum. Beef stew. Yum. Vegetables. Yeah, okay. Beef stew. Yum. Applesauce. Yum. Vegetables. HOW DARE YOU PUT THOSE IN MY MOUTH?!?!

Jim and I stared at her in disbelief. She...she...she was throwing a fit. Over what she did and did not want to eat. What in the world?! How could this happen?! WHO TAUGHT HER THIS WRETCHEDNESS?!?!

Oh yeah. Adam and Eve. Thanks a lot guys.

We stumbled through our first obvious issue of a sinning child as parents. Don't give in. Don't yell. Don't respond to the screaming. 
I don't know about my husband's brain but I was almost in shock. What now?! What book did I not read correctly?! What book do I need to read? Should I call my parents? How would they have responded? Have we allowed her to act like this and just haven't realized it?! Why don't we know what to do? We should have known this would happen! We should have prepared for this! 

I remembered something my Dad said frequently to us as we grew up. "I don't know! I've never done this before. I've never had a _____ (14 year old son, newly graduated daughter, 10 year old youngest daughter, dog this sick...etc) before!" It made me realize that no matter how hard I try to prepare for life as a parent for my daughter, there are going to be moments that hit me like a rock between the eyes and leave me staggering with bewilderment. Maybe I sound a little dramatic over a 9 month old crying about her vegetables but it truly was a wall-crumbling, eye-opening moment. We don't "got this." We never have and we never will. I have a feeling that parenting is right up there with marriage in the sanctification process. If we don't lay it all down before His throne and then come, broken and humble to His feet, we will always be one step behind in understanding. We will always be trying to plan and analyze and be ahead... when He wants us to submit, wait and slow down. I read earlier this week that instead of waking up with an "What am I going to get done today?" attitude, wake up with a "What is God going to do with me today?" attitude. Parenting is going to get much much harder than loss of sleep, diaper rashes and vegetable tantrums. What will the next rock be? Because it's a guarantee that time has one hurtling towards us. It could be severe allergies. It could be severe stubborness. It could be cancer. It could be death. I know I sound morbid. I don't mean to. And believe me I pray every single night over that little warm, sleeping human that we will be spared that particular rock... but I have no idea what God's plan is for our family. Because as much as I beg God to spare us from certain things, I don't know what He has in store. But I do know that I'm going to need strength and grace and trust always. Especially if there are big rocks coming. I'm not trying to dwell on dark "what ifs." God's grace does not exist in what ifs. But what I am trying to dwell on is my need to pray without ceasing. That "in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path."


Sidenote/Footnote/Whatever : I apologize that more often than not, my "devotionals" become long-winded, meandering rabbit-trails. I don't put hours into these blogs. Yes, week go by in between them, but it's not because I'm wrestling with the layout of the next one. So, if you reach the end of one and are all, "?!?!?!?!?!" I am very sorry. Often, as I type, the lesson I'm learning is only hitting me just then. And so I attempt convey all the new realizations of my brain and 2 paragraphs later, I'm on an entirely different tangent. I can't promise that that will change. Often they end so abruptly because I know that I do not have the time or the talent to convey what God just taught me. I type, delete, type, retype, delete...for the eternity of 30 minutes... hoping it will read like a Jonathan Edwards sermon. Ridiculous, I know. Even this S/F/W note is about to end. I just wanted to apologize for abrupt endings, confusing trains of thoughts and... and... dang it. No third thing to apologize for. 
The End.