Have a dressed up day!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Thursday, December 9, 2010


We do our Advent devotions and double up again.  My priorities slip under the weight of the season.  I promise to do better.  So glad He is good.

We read of Jacob and the night he slept under the stars with a rock for a pillow.  Of the promises God made to him.  Of his words to test God.  How the Father never fails a test.

We sing Jacob's Ladder.  Sweet son draws my ladder.  Everywhere is a house of God. 

We read of Joseph.  We talk about the colorful lights of Christmas and Joseph's colorful coat and how he helped prepare the way for the baby.  We smile at the way God teaches us,  as the children we are.

We read of Joseph forgiving his brothers.  Our assignment to forgive.  To write name on paper.  I think of her and how I thought I had forgiven.  Then why would I remember - with a hurting heart.  So I write down her name, looking at each letter, and I pray for her but more for me.

I pull my baby son onto my lap and try to explain forgiveness.  I point to the soft spot that holds his heart and remember how Trey hurt him the night before. 

He's a baby, only two.  He didn't mean to hurt you.

He made me mad, Mommy.

I hug him close and ask him if he can forgive and let Trey be his friend.  My son smiles and teaches me -

He alwa be my friend.

I spell the letters and he writes.

We slip his paper under the Jesse Tree and I slip mine under my pillow.

We place the ornaments on the tree.  And wait, for the baby.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Blog Party

Wow, I should do this more often.

Last night fellow bloggers and sweet friends of mine came over for our first blog gathering.  We shared food with one another and lots of laughs.

I got in my ten smiles and more.

Now there's lots of blog recommendations I need to check out and a cheesecake cookie recipe I have to make.

Stephanie walked in with these babies on a green polka-dot platter and I didn't know which I wanted more - the dessert or the platter.  Chocolate chip cookies and cheesecake together.  Oh my.

We made apple pies in jars and sweetly loved on one another. 

The clock chimed 1:20am before we called it a night.

Thanks to all of you for a wonderful evening.  And I made a gallon - I repeat - a gallon of homemade hot chocolate I left in the fridge.  So, now y'all must come back.

Right now, I'm gonna go take a shower - or maybe just move his towel.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Lord will Provide

We're waiting for Christ to come. 

It is only Christ alone who can make Christmas.

Ann says these words in the book she so generously offered for free.  The Jesse Tree Journey.

Last night it was cold and marshmallows were needing to be roasted. 

We gathered around a fire outside and feasted on their yummy goodness in preparation for Advent words from the Father.  When Max who doesn't eat them only roast them had more marshmallows on the ground than in our bellies we began the gentle words of the Word.

We smiled at the birth of Sarah's long awaited son, Isaac.  At his name which means laughter.  At Sarah's words,

. . .  I've given the old man a son! Genesis 21:7 

We laughed at the words of God making us the happiest people.   At my off tune rendition of fa-la-la-la, la, la, la, la.  Max stuck another marshmallow on the fire as I silently hurt deep for my baby sister.  As I clung to the hope of miracles.

We received our assignment.  To keep a smile on our face all day tomorrow.  To look for three opportunities to make someone laugh with us.  

He's Too Good To Me and I look at each other over the fire, knowing things are tougher than they have been in years, we're not so sure of this assignment.

We are behind so we double up and I had not read ahead and did not know this thought of fire for my children, what would be fun for them, would represent the words to come.  The altar. 

 In moments our laughter fades and Izzy's face is in despair.  Her mouth and eyes wide has I read the words spoken by our Father to Abraham.

Take your dear son Isaac whom you love and go to the land of Moriah.  Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains that I'll point out to you.  Genesis 22:2

What?  she says.  Mama, no.

She knows this God of hers.  She knows He asks things not so easily given.  She knows this is possible.  She waits along beside us for the coming of the baby, the one God himself will sacrifice. 

I hesitate as I realize she's forgotten this story of Isaac.  It's been too long.

I don't reassure her and continue to read.  She's leaned forward and through smoke I see it in her eyes.  Fear of the words coming, fear for Isaac.  She knows this is truth, not just a story.  She's having a moment we all have, thinking we know more than God, questioning.

I hear the catch of her breath as I read,

Abraham built an altar.  He laid out the wood.  Then he tied up Isaac and laid him on the wood.  Abraham reached out and took the knife to kill his Son.  Genesis 22: 9-10.

I look to her daddy and see him watching her carefully.  Anticipating . . .

Just then an angel of God called to him out of Heaven, "Abraham!  Abraham!"  "Yes, I'm listening." Genesis 22:11

Yes he was listening.  Waiting for a word.  He was gripped by fear as he held the knife.  His heart screaming to his God to stop this, please find another way.  But he continued as he loved God more and he would obey and then our God of the greatest gifts . . .

I hear her release of breath before I hear the small laugh, the nervous relax as I continue,

"Don't lay a hand on that boy!  Don't touch him!  Now I know how fearlessly you fear God; you didn't hesitate to place your son, your dear son, on the altar for me."  Genesis 22: 12

She breathes deep and slumps in her chair. 

I knew that, I hoped that, she says.

First we hoped, and as a world watched our Father came in the form of the greatest gift and gave Himself, His only Son as a sacrifice.  To die so we would live.

And now we know.

We await the birth of this baby.  Read the story to Max from his Bible.  Place the Advent ornaments on the tree.  Lay ourselves before as an altar.

   And smiling?  Some days are difficult and I awake this morning and look out at the cold fire.  Bad news and no news hovers and I wonder about my ten smiles today.  And laughter - that will be even harder.  He kisses me as he leaves and reassures me and I reassure him and love him deeply.

This One and Only God I worship gifts abundantly.  And Abraham called that mountaintop "The Lord will Provide."  And the provision of Jesus came and He stays forever. 

Monday, December 6, 2010

One Thousand Gifts . . .

We stand in the kitchen and argue about the wirecutters he found in the dirt pile.  Coated with rust and mud.  I feel guilty I can't seem to manage to keep little hands away from Daddy's tools.  Some days are long and difficult and full and I just don't see.

So I twist the guilt.  Lay the blame on him for not giving his little man some old tools, anything "real" to touch and play with.  He's too smart for the toy tools, I say.  I go one step too far -

If you really cared . . .

Why do we do that to the ones we love?  Guilt is too heavy on our own shoulders so we pass it on.

They leave to go do man's work and two hours later my baby son walks in with a tool kit from the hardware store.  Sealed in the difficult plastic and dragged with its weight.  Mind and hands ready to work beside Daddy.  Excitement on his face.  It's weal tools, Mommy.

He looks at me and grins.  I tease him and say, Guilt giftHe shrugs.  He's cutting it open and I continue to tease him, wanting to know where my guilt gift is.  He shifts his eyes to mine with the same look that melted me years ago when I decided there was no other man for me. 

They work side by side all day - till naptime.

My gratitude list continues . . .

when words aren't needed

forgiveness for too many words

rusted wire cutters

dirt piles

'weal tools

yellow hard hats


silver handled hammer

tape measure - 'tirty-nine, Mommy

messy chalk lines

shirtless,  I'm a wourk man, Mommy

little brown hair sticking up from plastic goggles

oreo smiles

dirty little fingernails

scars on a thumb half its original size

little tool belts

bluejeans hanging

adjustable pants tabs

refurbished butcher block

My list, #'s447-465.

Friday, December 3, 2010

This World Is Backwards - The Cast System in Heaven

She told me if I only had five minutes to spend at the computer today to make it this.

I stared.  Leaned back in my chair.  Stared some more.  I could tell by the look on that little face that I did not want to go there.  Not today.  I told Ann no and clicked off.  I walked away.

I came back.  Sometimes He just won't leave me alone.  It's so gentle, that nudge to do something I don't want to do.

Actually it was the title, not the face, that brought me back.  The title God used to bring me back - Depraved Indifference.  I am depraved.  As long as flesh hangs on these bones I. Am. Depraved.  But do I have to be indifferent?

So, if you only have five minutes to spend at the computer today - spend it here.

And as you claw to give those you love more this holiday, remember that more is never going to be enough It is less of you that beckons from above.

Become part of the movement. The movement to give more and receive less this season.

Do it here.  The little boy down the street, the little girl that doesn't have.  By becoming less you will be made more.

There's a cast system in heaven . .
Drawing of me losing my cool courtesy of budding artist, Izzy.

Have a dressed up day!

. . . put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Colossians 3:12