Monday, March 14, 2011

for the joyful and the hard

Attempting to meet the needs of all four children, and then later, my husband's needs, overwhelms on some days. Time to give thanks for the joyful moments, along with some hard hallelujahs for the problems.

Monday Gratitude:

- Mary's fun fixation on rhyming words

- Beth's smile

- Beth's joy at being outside

- Brothers playing ball

- Birds flying high overhead in perfectly straight lines, equal distances apart.  Amazing.

- Hospital pictures of a friend's new baby

- Brothers waiting restlessly for the UPS man to deliver their new math program

- Brothers doing math excitedly at 6:30 PM, because the UPS man came at 6:00 PM.

- Noisy din of four children playing hard while Momma cooked

- Boys folding pajamas

- Kids cleaning their playroom cooperatively

- A hard hallelujah for the ADHD son who chews his shirts constantly, ruining them.  God will provide.

- A hard hallelujah for the speech articulation issues in my two-year-old. How will I find the time to get on the floor and play with toys an hour a day, to draw out more words and consonant sounds?  I know that is what's necessary, and it overwhelms me.  I don't play well.  I can read, sing, and dance, give bountiful love, but I don't play, in the traditional sense. Here is some help for me, and maybe you out there?   I'm going to order one of these DVD's to teach me how to draw language out, though play, thereby delighting my toddler and keeping her out of speech therapy.  As she adds longer sentences, it becomes more clear that we have a problem, Houston. We can't understand her!  Therapy would present a problem, since I have no second vehicle.  And I'm too frightened to send my two-year-old on a bus, which is the speech practice in this district for two-year-olds.  With the Lord on my side, I will learn to do this, in my home, and I will love it.  And Miss Beth will thrive.

- A hard hallelujah for my husband's work and personal frustrations.  After a full day and evening of kid issues and homekeeping, I'm out of steam, and that just doesn't work.  Teach me to be gentle and quiet, pouring forth grace--meeting the needs of those around me.

- A hard hallelujah for a nervous disposition, which makes it harder to meet the needs you've presented me with.

- Praises that our family dynamics are a perfect depiction of the Gospel--never good enough, never quite getting there, sorrow over failures, exhausted by attempts at mastery.  Ultimately, needing to fall at your feet and lay down my life, my timetable, my desires, my comforts, for your divine plan.

Dwelling on all these verses this week:

James 1:2-18 (source found here)

Trials and Temptations
 2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. 6 But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. 7 That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do. 9 Believers in humble circumstances ought to take pride in their high position. 10 But the rich should take pride in their humiliation—since they will pass away like a wild flower. 11 For the sun rises with scorching heat and withers the plant; its blossom falls and its beauty is destroyed. In the same way, the rich will fade away even while they go about their business.
 12 Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.
 13 When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14 but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. 15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.
 16 Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers and sisters. 17 Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. 18 He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created.

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