Sunday, February 26, 2012

Part of Me

There is something in that moment. When it hits you. When, suddenly, it's clear. A word, a phrase stands out brighter than the rest. Brighter than ever before. And your heart says, "Sit up. Listen. Take note."

The sermon was about being a servant, not just one who serves. He said that serving in the "hidden-ness" is what transforms our hearts. And isn't that what I'm after? Isn't that what Lent is all about, after all? Transformation? Preparation?

He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?”
Jesus replied,
“You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.”
“No,” said Peter, “you shall never wash my feet.”

Jesus answered,
“Unless I wash you, you have no part with me.”
(John 13:6-8)

There is something about serving that guarantees a part of ourselves, that gives a part of ourselves. I can't expect to serve wholeheartedly without giving myself over to the other. And then, too, when I allow someone else to serve me, I receive a part of them. How can I refuse someone's service to me without denying who they are? How can I hold on to myself in the service of others? I can't. I can't.

It's something to ponder, to mull over, to treasure. Because this moment of awareness is not accidental. This moment is preparing my heart, transforming my heart. I was made for this, after all.

And you? What is your moment?

My sermon notes & doodles. Hop on over to my friend's blog to see more doodles from church.

Saturday, February 25, 2012


For the first time, I'm actively engaging in the season of Lent. My husband decided to give up computer use at home, which got me thinking...
about my time
about my habits
about my Bible study
about my conviction

And I knew it was right for me to join him in giving up and giving over, in this time of preparation. So here I am giving up Hulu for Lent. Reminding myself daily that what I fill my mind - my life - with is important. Remembering that being intentional with my God, with my husband, with my son is more important than the characters on my favorite shows.

Because it's not just about my time. Or my energy (or the lack thereof). It's about my heart. He is making my heart a garden. For Him. For His glory.

And in Hulu's place there is to be...

Watch. Listen. Enjoy.

Monday, February 13, 2012


My friend and neighbor told me when my son was born that change is the new normal, or something to that effect. She basically meant that I should expect change. As soon as one routine seems to be set, Jesse will change, and we'll have to adjust. That certainly seems to be the case, and it's not a bad thing.

When I found out that I got into school and was pregnant at the same time, I knew there was a specific reason for it. That's why, as I take this semester off, one of my goals is to figure out how motherhood and writing fit together. (Right now I picture it as less of a balancing act, and more of a marriage. There will always be give and take, but they are meant to be together and make each other better.)

Although this is my goal, the first few weeks I didn't worry about it. I just wanted to get to know my son and myself as a mom. (Not to say that it can be accomplished in a few weeks; I don't think that will ever be finished.) After a bit of time "off" writing, I began to want it again. My fingers itched to get to the keyboard. But when I had a spare moment, I had neither the energy nor the ideas to even begin to write. So I waited a bit longer.

Now I have more energy, but often I feel bereft of ideas. Or I have ideas but no time. Or my boy needs me. Or it's easier to watch Hulu. Or, or, or...

But today, glorious day, my son fell asleep. I took a quick shower, and he was still sleeping. I messed around trying to get my printer to work, and he was still sleeping. So I thought, why not try to write? Eight-hundred plus words later, and I'm beginning to realize that it's not about the time or the ideas. Sometimes it's simply about sitting down to the computer, placing my fingers lightly on the keyboard, breathing deeply, and getting out some words. No matter how many. No matter how good.

I may feel great about it, like today. Or I may feel frustrated and drained and incapable of thought. No matter. It's a marriage. Some days are easy, and some are hard. But this journey of motherhood and writing were gifted together. I trust that they will make the other better.

So here's to change, to constant adjustment. Here's to being who I was meant to be. Here's to being whole - a daughter of the King, a wife, a mom, a writer, a friend, and so much more.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Consider it all joy...

Today, I find myself musing about joy, books, creating, work, and so much more.

At the beginning of the Bible study that I'm doing at my church, the author says that joy is our birthright in Christ. What a beautiful thought. Joy as a birthright. That has been sticking with me over the last few weeks.

I love to read. I can and will literally devour books day after day. Now that I'm nursing, I find this especially true because I'm sitting still for hours each day without the ability to get up and do something. So...I read.

Wouldn't you think, then, that these endless hours of reading would fill me to the brim with joy? Most of the time, they do. However, sometimes I find myself swallowed up by the waves that I once sailed. When I am only taking in without in turn creating, I drown. My joy in reading is stolen when I don't turn around and create or do something with what I'm taking in.

Sometimes I forget that the creating, the doing, is joyful. Madeleine L'Engle says it this way: "Our work should be our play."

I was just recently speaking with a friend about this. We both agreed that our hardest work, the thing that takes the most energy and time and risk is also the thing that is the most rewarding, the most joyful. For me, that thing is writing. It's sad that so many young people don't understand this. (I can recall many instances of my past students saying that they wanted to have a job where they didn't have to work; they just wanted the easy life, to play.) "Our work should be our play." Our work should be our joy.

In the grand moments of inspiration when I'm swept up by the In the work of In the cleaning of the In the changing of a In the waking up tired to nurse my hungry In the reading of the In the moments with friends, In the reading of good In the remembering to photograph my boy each

Consider it all joy.

My husband planning a lovely 27th "Napa Night" birthday party for me.
Consider it all joy.

My beautiful, sleeping boy.
Consider it ALL joy.
In Christ.