An honest reflection of me- in fragments. Imperfect- Grace Covered. Balance. Mom. Wife.
Nurse. Homeschool Teacher. Christ follower first. Second changes. Thankful.

Empty Love

Friday, May 30, 2014

His eyes light with the love he held for me
And mine locked on his
Ten years ago we said I do
He said he wouldn't cry and I knew I would
He did
Overwhelmed with a joy that I had not known existed
Until that moment when I was his
 In front of God and everyone
Eternally free to grow with him, laugh with him, hold his hand, and be with him

 For better or worse
And when the worse came it drained our joy
Until we were empty and tired And the love was changed but for the better, stronger, more
And Still "I do" and "He does"
Because when love doesn't feel like it should, it becomes an action
And love does
It wasn't about us but about eternity
 And how we wanted to be found there - together
And how right now, matters And how we weren't good enough for each other, but God was good enough for both of us
Until the joy resurfaced and it was better
Not because we were better
 But because God is a God of love, a God of action and of miracles
And because we learned how to love each other

He loves me with empty things
Like laundry baskets and washing machines, and dishwashers and open car doors
He loves me with patience and understand and silence and time
And how he fills my empty hand with his
(he learned that from his parents) 
He loves me by listening and asking
He loves me by leading me in a way that doesn't feel lead
And I've learned how to let him
He loves me by the emptying of himself
And that kind of love makes me want to be empty for him too
He fills my gaps

This love we share works because, it's empty
It's empty of ourselves
We're not perfect
But God is
And I'm trust Him to keep leading us in the pursuit of this empty love
Love that
Moves and breathes and gives and tries and builds up and forgives and feels and hopes and keeps
Love that is enough when I'm not

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails. - 1 Corinthians 13:4-8

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Following your heart is easy, but is it enough?

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

"It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak.  We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea.  We are far too easily pleased."
- C.S. Lewis (The Weight of Glory, and Other Addresses)

We are encompassed by whispers of self-assurance
It's a self-made, self-reliant culture
Begging for our individual hearts to seek and find personal truth
Wrapped in dreams of temporary,
Built on fleeting pleasure, short-sighted vision and unstable emotion
"Do what feels good, follow your heart"

But assurance within ourselves is unsure at best, continually wavering
And the myth of control will always be found out as such
A myth
For within myself I can not find sustaining truth or grasp lasting pleasure
I can not control their behavior, her cancer, his work schedule, not even my own emotion
This beating heart bleeds
This changing emotion lies
This short-sighted vision is not worthy of following

I don't want to be self-made
I want to be remade
I don't want to be self-reliant
I want to be dependent
Wrapped in the reality of eternity
Built on unimaginable joy, peace, unchanging truth, purpose and promises

I don't want to do what feels good
I want to do what is right
I can't trust my heart
And so I'll seek His

I don't want to be too easily pleased
I want to be
Trusting in something much more than myself
Encompassed by whispers of truth

Linking up with Coffee For Your Heart
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All I Needed Was To Say Thank You

Thursday, May 8, 2014

It was a morning...
A REAL honest, hard morning
I woke up with that feeling in my chest, you know the's tight because your mind awakes reeling with the list.  It's going to be busy, and in the middle of it all they are going to need you
Good morning God I whisper, but the list interrupts His time and I don't wait for Him to answer

Runny eggs, bagels, giggles, silliness, beautiful - loud child-like behavior, conversation about pokemon, and some imaginary person whose name escapes me, and a prayer in Jesus name for the day ahead.
Over-view of school work to be completed, appointments, a time-line for the day and this one little thing
"Your chore today is to unload the dishwasher after breakfast"
Go team...
But it seems like I'm the only one going, and I can't enjoy them being seven and eight
Because after eighteen reminders
It's not done
And I come undone
Worn down from the asking, it's heavy, and the feeling in my chest tightens and I feel tired
How can I be tired?
But the time for appointments is now, or more like five minutes ago
The gas tank is empty
And still it gets heavier - the day - and over what?

But it's not the dishes
It's the obedience, but more than that it's my lack of patience, and self-reliance
So in the quiet of the car with eyes on the road, but heart open to Him
I speak His name, and beg Him for help
Less of me, MORE of Him,
That His Spirit would take over because I'm a mess and missing it
And when I think of Him
I can't help but thank Him
Thank Him for giving me two amazing kids who act their age, and who are learning how to show love in their actions, because it is a learned thing - love in action, something I'm still learning with them
I need His forgiveness
For the times I neglect to love Him with my actions, times I miss loving them with my actions
And I thank Him
I thank Him for His grace and patience with me
Because the list is long;
Moments I wasted walking away, in ignorance or selfish disobedience, disregarding instruction, too loud, or too busy to listen,
And still, He's never given up on me
He listens,
He gives me more grace,
His Word,
His counsel,
He gently reminds me what obedience looks like
How grace feels
I exhale and the heaviness starts to lift
Because with thanksgiving I give Him my day, my list, my kids, my heart
Eyes open
Quietly driving them
Late to appointments
Overwhelmed with the weightlessness of this needy gratitude
It's not easy to surrender,
I can't put it into words, but it's lighter
And I am grateful

Linking up with Lisa-Jo Baker and Five Minute Friday - today's prompt is Grateful.

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These are the [homeschool] lessons I didn't plan

Monday, May 5, 2014

The kind you can't measure with hands on a clock
This time is measured in heart beats and moments
Building an impromptu scale-model of Noah's ark
Laughing together, and at ourselves
Drinking hot tea in the afternoon
Sharing tears and a long hug after eight minutes spent in the corner
Watching him grow to care about her
Watching them become friends
Playing in the rain
Sitting with the sun on our faces doing math or art or just sitting
Realizing I need to be still, and present, and here
For the question I would have missed - but didn't

The kind you can't make perfect sense of or memorize
This addition is life - relationships, joy and trust
This subtraction is self and all the good things that weren't right things
Because this year was going to be about ME - rest, writing, going to the gym, serving
And then it wasn't
It wasn't about me at all, but about the subtraction of me
Stripping away my ideas, and my plans - replacing them with right ones
Being faithful
Capturing joy
Learning to ask for help
Finding community and being intentional
Living authentically - Sharing the best in each other, forgiving the worst
Being faithful with His plan
His timing
His kids

I am certain this is His plan, and what He wants of me, of us
The echos of my pleas resounds in my memory
My defiance, bargaining and uncertainty
Contrasted by His answer, His patience, His faithfulness and His goodness

All these lessons I didn't plan
He planned for me
I am learning
How to be faithful, and joyful, and need Him
How to cherish them
How to embrace the ways they are like me and the ways they are distinct
His quiet determination and concrete deep thinking
Her bold self-confidence and imagination
Learning that's it's okay they see me tired, and messy and real
It's okay I need their forgiveness
It's okay for me to need
And to learn
Time, doesn't pause
Second by second, day ticks away into night
And every night into a new day
Until the days blur together and the time is gone
A temporary now
Yet, the more I subtract myself the more I find myself in Him
Real, Renewed, Needing Him
But unexplainably fulfilled
Joy in faithfulness and shepherding and unplanned homeschooling
Hopeful for an eternal someday
Where I won't be a mess,
But where we will still be together
Just better
Understanding each other's hearts
And sharing His

And for now...I get to teach them
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