Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Thank you, Pauline!!

Friday, June 14, 2013

What Are You Waiting For?

Good intentions.
Great ideas.
One day I'll....

I am the queen of good intentions.  I am an "ideas" person.  I can come up with some pretty darn good ideas.  Those ideas don't always gain traction - both at home and at work - but man, I can come up with some great ideas.

My children don't always understand that my ideas are sometimes just that.  Ideas.  Things we could be doing.  In their eyes, my ideas have become a promise that I have made to them that I don't always follow through with.  To them I am a walking Pinterest site - full of great ideas and plans.  Some of them are accomplished and create great memories.  Sadly, much of the time my ideas quickly turn into the disappointment my children feel when there just isn't enough time to do it all.

This is not something new to me.  I was made this way.  It is a blessing and a curse.  Fortunately I have been able to turn this characteristic into a job skill.  It has been an integral part of every position I have held.  My creativity has been able to put groceries in the cabinet, gas in the car, and helped keep the lights on at the house.

But last weekend my daughter and young son said something that stopped me in my tracks.  We were going to do a craft project.  Both of them had responsibilities that they needed to complete before we could do it.  I had things that really needed to get done, too.

My husband and I are pretty strict about delaying the things we want to do when there are things that we need to get done.  This is an important lesson that we really want our children to understand.

But before I got to the "if we get that done" portion of getting them excited about the project, both of them said in their own way, "If we have time.  We know Mommy.  If we have time."

I've been chewing on that for a few days. "If we have time."

Time.  My whole life I've heard little quips and clich├ęs bout time. How you never get it back.  You can't stop it.  How it marches on.  I've learned that the mundane seems to drag along and the moments you want to treasure and cherish go screaming by.

Sometimes you don't even recognize a cherished moment until it is long, long gone.  

The past few weeks I've had a chance to ponder some pretty scary thoughts regarding my health and this has changed my perspective on how much time I have been spending making plans and having ideas that never come to fruition.

I've made a decision to start doing more with my ideas.  I've decided to follow through with them to the end.  I've decided to re-ignite the hope and joy and creativity that is burning bright in my children but had been dimmed a little because time and certain responsibilities were getting in the way.

The dishes and clothes that need to be put away can wait.  I would much rather use the two days each week  and short hours each night that I get to spend completely with my children doing more with them and not quite as much around them.

I am going to do more of the things that I have intended on doing sometime in the future "when the time is right".

I'm not going to wait any longer to tackle tough things that have been ideas floating around in my head.

I am going to serve the Lord more boldly.  I am going to volunteer more. I am going to get my hands dirty and help others more. I am going to write more.  I am going to climb a mountain with my husband.  I am going to play with my children more.  I am going to run in as many races as my little legs will let me.  I am going to take my kids to Disney.

I am going to live a full life.  

This week, my husband and I finally put life and responsibilities on hold and took our children fishing.  After work.  When we were tired.  We left dishes in the sink and unfolded clothes on the couch.  And had the time of our lives.

We have no guarantees on exactly how much time we have in this life.  It doesn't have to take a health prognosis to make you re-prioritize your life.  It could just be that you look at your children one day and realize how quickly they are growing up.  It might just take a glance in the mirror.  It might come to you at that quiet moment just before you fall asleep after a long, hard day at work.  But grab that moment of clarity and go with it.

My thought for the week:

Be deliberate with your time.  It is the only thing in life that you can't get back.  

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

The Most Important Thing

I was not feeling it this morning.  

At 3:30am I was awakened by the loud shriek of a cat in my yard.  Then another one.  The two of them were quite vocal.  This went on for quite awhile.  If you have never been blessed enough to hear cats socializing during the night, it is a blood curdling sound that just seemed to be amplified by the fact that all of our bedroom windows were open and the streets below were silent.  


I've started torturing myself with exercise early in the morning.  On Tuesdays and Thursdays, I am up at 4:30am for an exercise class.  So much for that extra hour of sleep.  I should be used to sleep deprivation... I think I can count on two hands the number of times my three year old has slept all the way through the night.  But that last hour of sleep would have been so nice.  

I zip through spin class and expect to come home to a quiet house.  6:00am and I am usually still the only one awake at this point.  Unless aforementioned toddler has crawled in bed with my husband.  My dear daughter isn't exactly a "morning person", so typically I am giving her a nudge at about 6:30.  She is seldom as happy to see me as I am to see her sweet, sleepy face.   

Today was very, very different.    

Today my sweet, bright-eyed little angel was already up.  She greeted me as I came in, smiling with her mess of curly red hair because she is happy.  So very happy.  She announces to me that she has been up for a little while, she has already fixed her snack and picked out her clothes, and she has her toothbrush in her hand - ready for action.  Then she remembers breakfast and follows me down to the kitchen.  As we are waiting on our bagels to finish toasting she tells me why she is so happy.  

"Mommy, I prayed this morning when I woke up.  I guess I wanted to pray because I dreamed all night about God, and Jesus, and the Holy Spirit.  They were all there... in my dream."  
I had to peek around the corner to respond to her.  Because an announcement like that deserved eye contact.  I said, "That's great sweetheart.  I'm so excited that you woke up and started your day talking to God."
"Wanna know what I learned in my dream?" she asked.  
"Of course I do," was my reply.  
"I dreamed that God just wanted me to know that He was the most important thing in life.  That's all.  So I woke up and prayed.  I thought it was weird that He wanted me to know that because I've been knowing that for years, like since I was 5 or 6.  Do we have cream cheese?" 

We had our bagels and chatted along through our normal morning routine but I haven't been able to shake her words.  Wow.  

I've been rocked pretty hard lately with what's important.  Perceived priorities.  But in one simple revelation that was just so obvious to my seven year old daughter, I gained true perspective.  

God is the most important thing in life. Period.  

Everything else comes after that.  Health, finances, career, family... everything.  Yeah, it is something I have always "thought", but is it really playing out in my priorities?  My actions? How I manage my life? 

Am I living like He is most important?  

I am pretty sure that it wasn't a huge revelation to my daughter. She has a keen understanding of God that is beyond my comprehension.  She has no idea the impact that her simple and direct faith has on me each day.  I didn't clue her in today that her words from God may not have just been for her but for her to share with others. As a parent I have really steered away from directing my children's relationships with God but rather fostered opportunities for their own personal relationships with God to take root.  But her message was so clear and I felt led to share it with others.  

God is the most important thing in life.  

Pretty simple words, actually.  Even my seven year old has been "knowing it for years".