From where I sat this past week,
As an individual, I…
turned 44 on this past Tuesday. The predominant thought on my mind is that my mom gave birth to me when she was 44 years old. As I think through where I am at this season in my life, I find myself imagining what having a brand new baby must have felt like for her. I’m not sure why I keep thinking about that.
Worship was so sweet this morning. I came home from church very relaxed after a week of tremendous outpouring of ministry this week. I got nothing fully accomplished that I wanted to—gardening nor sewing—but oh, the Get Revived conference was wonderful, and just what I needed. My topic was “Increase Your Capacity”—a topic that I’m still working to understand myself as I walk it out in flesh. As I shared with the ladies, I had no idea where I’d go with it even as close as one week beforehand. Yet, the Lord gave me words and even fit them into the schedule at the perfect moment.
Talking about increased capacity, I am so excited about the progress of the work I’m completing for the church. We’ve continued to work through various obstacles in putting together training that will not only change how our church grows its leaders, but it also has great potential within the community surrounding the church. As the vision continues to unfold, it looks as if the training might operate outside of our church, 3000 members strong, and be utilized in a number of neighboring smaller churches that minister primarily to Spanish-speaking congregations. So, guess what? All of my work will be translated into Spanish!!!! Talk about bringing your loaves of bread and fish to the Lord and watching Him multiply!!!!! To say the least, I am so pleased to be a part of this, and thankful for the pastor’s inviting himself over to dinner a few weeks back (for that part of the story, see here).
As a wife and homemaker, I…
am so pleased to have our Hurricane Ike-damaged roof fixed—debt-free. This was a testimony worth sharing, if only for me to reflect upon later. Following hurricanes Katrina and Rita, most of the major insurance companies pulled out of our area, and those left didn’t offer hurricane-related insurance. This cleared the way for a shyster organization to enter, let me tell it, who robbed much of the metropolitan area with its high deductibles and even higher fees. When Ike ravaged our particular neighborhood, most homeowners were left in one of two scenarios. Scenario one: your home was destroyed, forcing you to find temporary housing while your home was restored. For almost a year, there were no apartment vacancies in our little suburb. Scenario two: your home sustained damage, but not enough to meet the insurance deductible, leaving substantial repairs to be completed out-of-pocket. We were in the second scenario. I can rejoice that while our neighborhood took on the look of a ghost town and/or a trailer park, dependent upon which street you drove, we returned to a house with some external damage, but very livable conditions. Yet, we still needed to do some work, and it’s taken a while to make it all happen, but I can’t help but feel good after listening to days of banging above my head (and no, it wasn’t the kids!). I feel as if the house has been restored, and now I can move on to the other fifty projects I have in mind (smile). It occurs to me as many of us encounter various financial challenges that sometimes it’s good to know that God is still Jehovah Jireh.
As a mom and homeschooling parent, I…
enjoyed the week off during our spring break. Plan A was to take a day trip to the Blue Bell ice cream factory during the time off, but the oldest had a 24-hour virus. On Friday night, the men of the house attended a boys’ lock-in at the church, while we ladies had a game and movie night. The week was relaxing, even if I can’t check off as much on my to-do list as I’d like.
I am excited about the schedule for the remaining nine weeks of school. As I began to write in the kids’ planners, I found nice, tidy points of closure for the year. I’m reminded of a saying that an old co-worker of mine would state repeatedly: ‘I see the light at the end of the tunnel, and it’s not a train!’ Hilarious, but there is a haunting ring of truth this year. As usual, we will continue with reading and math (for a few days of week) during our summer, but I want to be sure that I wind down this summer, if only for myself. This was my first year teaching three children at three different levels, and it was nothing short of tough. Barb over at Harmony Art Mom had a great post about finding time for what, for me, is often the stuff that happens haphazardly, and sometimes not at all—nature study, art, music study, etc. I have been using Opal Wheeler’s books, along with a couple of classical for kids’ websites, to cover composers each semester, but this semester, we covered no one. I realized about three weeks into the semester that I’d forgotten to buy the book/ CD set that I wanted, and I honestly couldn’t gather the mental strength to add in one more thing. Though I have used a couple of the techniques she suggested, this was a timely reminder and food for thought for some of what I want to do next school year. Homeschool benefit #1001: this is a very forgiving process. No one tells you that if you missed a week, or a month, or a year, that your child will be damaged for life. (I can’t believe that after seven years, I actually wrote that and believe it–smile).
Having said all that, I saw much fruit on this academic year, which had everything to do with God’s hand upon our year and little to do with me, but I intend to embrace that ever-elusive state of rest. The kids already have plans that will significantly cut into our time—our oldest at a fashion camp, our son at the national dance competition, with associated practices—so if I’m not careful, I’ll over-plan the time, the trap that snares me each year.
Inspired by Karen, who already has next school year figured out (you are just too much, lady!), I started penning my own plans and downloading free audiobooks onto the new MP3/MP4 player my family bought me for my birthday. As I got into a groove with downloading, I began to laughingly think, am I going to read anything on next year? I’ll have to balance my new toy with the need to actually interact with the kids—HA HA! I’m not finished yet, but thankfully, most of what I’ll do is tweaking and not total revamps. Praise God we have something that, for the most part, is successful, even with varying levels of energy towards the work.
As a business owner, I…
focused on a solid delivery at the Conference this week, and I like to think it went well. I met some wonderful new acquaintances that I look forward to getting to know better in the weeks and months to come. I’m continuing to move forward and pray about next steps.
May the Lord bless your week as well.