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I wait for bedtime for so many reasons.
To rest, sit down, to breathe but most importantly to meet with Jesus and reflect, refresh and restore my soul.
Sweatpants and honesty required.
Come sit with me momma.



April 19, 2014

Saturday

Sitting in an auditorium in college I heard Tony Camplo say, "It's Friday, but Sunday's comin'..." I will never forget the grit and soulfulness of his voice when he spoke those words again and again. He was without words saying, "Rachel you are in pain on Friday but God's glory will show up on Sunday. Just wait. Just wait and see."

As Christian's Jesus' death on the cross on Good Friday is the culmination of all our sins being bore down upon an innocent man. It is heart breaking, heavy laden and full of teary eyedness every time I think about what Jesus did for me before he even knew me.
His act of love was on a Friday. A sad Friday. We call it Good Friday because we already know today what happened on Sunday.
What about Mary, Mary Magdalene, Peter, and the others? They were told what was coming but we all know they likely doubted. Wondered. Hoped.

So what happened on Saturday?
The day between the nightmare and the glory?

The sky became dark, the earth shook, and hearts were overcome by deep, cutting pain that the savior they were promised is dead.

Saturday.
The day in between.

In our lives today, we get Saturday experiences often.
Something that rocks our world on a Friday...
"Your chances of becoming pregnant are less than 1%"
"I'm sorry, your IVF failed."
"You have cancer"
"Your job is being downsized"
"Your child is misbehaving in school"
"Your van will cost more to repair than it is worth"
"Your best friend is spreading lies about you"
The list could go on...

Those are our little Friday's we live everyday.

We know, as Christian's that God promises nothing but good to those who love Him. (Rom 8:28) We trust in his unfailing love and that he is watching us. But why? Why?
Saturday is why.
Saturday is the waiting. The trusting. The discipline of patience and grinding our teeth and sucking in our gut and wiping our tears day after day after day. Its hitting our knees to the floor crying out to God and wringing out our very souls to him. It is more waiting then we think we can take. It is stretching us further than we think we can bare. Will Sunday ever stinking come? Will it?
Trust. Faith. Patience.

Saturday. Let's not forget the Saturday between the Friday and Sunday.
Now Sunday, bursting forth with brilliance and glory and light. Sunday would not be possible without Friday but also without Saturday.

May we reflect on each day of this gloriously brilliant and loud and quiet holiday as a holy day in and of itself. Each day momma. Let Christ be an example to us that though a moment in life may knock us in the gut, though Sunday may seem like lightyears away, Saturday is a vital day. A day of growth, where God meets us in our hurting and prepares us for Sunday.  Whenever that is for our circumstance.  
Saturdays matter too but Sunday's comin'. Glory.

Honestly with love,
Rachel xoxo

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4






April 17, 2014

I'm Just in Line



Sitting at a computer desk filling out a commercial liability policy for a client, reviewing eligibility and coverage’s today and all I can think is I want to go home to my sick boy. It is 2:39 and home is on the horizon. Sometimes God speaks to you that you are just where he wants you despite what you want.

It all started with an impromptu conversation about Jesus and repairing her broken marriage in my office. I got to be a part of her journey today. Shortly after I got home a message from a beautiful mother whom I look up to telling me she wanted my advice. Me. What? Moments later I get a text from someone I love going through infertility pain, I mean true emotional pain, and she says my words written down on a blog four years ago about my struggle have comforted her today.  Seriously minutes later it is followed by a request for prayer from a lovely mom who is facing deep sadness today.  Being asked to walk with these sweet ladies today has taken me by surprise and I am in awe of what God is doing.  My heart is just full. It is overflowing. Words have always expressed for me what I am thinking but today I am empty of them.



How did I get here? I do not deserve this blessing of encouraging other people when I myself feel like I am still wandering on occasion. I suppose we all feel that way and just look to the person in line in front of us to ask for help. I am that person in line in front of them.  I just moments ago walked where they were and can offer a little truth. I feel immense, immense privilege they trust me enough to hold my journey close to their hearts. I have sincere love for their souls- which I know is given to me directly from Christ. I know he walked me through my valleys to strengthen me and to hold someone else’s hand along the way when they walk there too. Oh how He loves us to give us the blessings of these people along life’s way.

There are so many women in line in front of me, who have walked journeys like mine that I look to for help. So many. My mom, my mother in law, two close friends, writers like Sally Clarkson, Lisa-Jo Baker, and a few others whom I can see the light of Christ shining through the heartbeats of their lives.  His rays of light just come from the words they speak and the way their feet walk. Their honesty, their compassion, their love for others, most importantly the way they live out Christ and love their families.


I encourage you today dear Momma. Find someone in line behind you. Someone you can hold the hand of. It grows you and spurs you on to being better. It inspires you to Christ-likeness. Teachers often learn more than the student. Then find someone in line in front of you. Ask to hold their hand on their journey and follow it closely with Jesus. You are not alone on this journey momma friend. You just aren’t. Let His glorious light shine down as you open your eyes and see the millions of momma’s, women and girls who are standing in line with us. Millions. Grab two of those hands today. You aren't alone. 



But he’s already made it plain how to live, what to do,
    what God is looking for in men and women.
It’s quite simple: Do what is fair and just to your neighbor,
    be compassionate and loyal in your love,
And don’t take yourself too seriously—
    take God seriously. Micah 6:8 the message
Titus 2

Honestly with love,
Rach

April 11, 2014

Revisited: I am Done Making My Kids Childhood Magical

Have you read this?


I get it. The author was trying to say she is done with doing all the things to make her kids childhood a magical fairy tale. Tired of the pressure. Tired of telling kids life is romance and roses then placing them in a world that is often polar opposite. Tired.

As I was reading that article, my heart just whispered to me, "no, no Rachel do not buy this. Do not give up."  Old fashioned parenting as mentioned in the article had it's perks and disdain. How many of our grandparents were completely unconnected emotionally to their children? I think that is part of the reason this shift in going overboard has occurred.  Our parents wanted us to have what they may not have had- connection, a voice, more than a couple toys.  Our parents passed that to us and it has just grown more so with this new generation of parents. As mentioned in the article, there is a heavy, burdensome pressure we modern parents are holding to give our kids all the things. To do all the pintrest crafts, to attend every field trip, to helicopter parent, to pour, pour, pour our souls out to them until we can pour no more. When we do that, we do two things: we don't let them experience authentic life, and we don't experience it either because we are too drained.

My favorite word is balance.

I am not saying this article is wrong. It's just not the whole story of what parenting should be.  We are called to encourage the magical, mystery of life in our kids. Spur them towards it. Lead them. Sometimes that means we help create it so they can be in the middle of that swirly tornado of glitter and confetti of "a moment." Sometimes that means we put them outside and tell them to have at it and create it themselves. 

When we stop trying to show them the world, stop succumbing to the pressure of parenthood; our kids lose. A little bit of pressure, a little bit of stress pushes us onward mightily. Pushes us. Growth. Notice I said little. We parents also need to give ourselves a stinkin' break. End the comparison trap. End the need to do and say and be everything to them. 

Balance.

Balance is pressure between two things.  
Balance between stressed schedules and unrelenting laziness.
Balance between having every toy and having none.
Balance between a magical childhood and a boring one.
Balance between helicopter parenting and a lonely child.
Balance between teaching and enabling.


Balance.

This world is broken, when we put rose colored glasses on our kids occasionally they can dream big. When we take off those glasses sometimes and stand by them in reality, they have seen what glory and goodness God has made in our world. We teach them to notice simple pleasures. We can help raise world changers people. World changers. Let's walk with our kids down a journey that is grassy and magical sometimes and muddy and dark others. Hand in hand as they grow and adjust and are molded into the adults God has planned for them to be. 
Just be present. Show them joy, encourage self-reliance and hope. Have a good time with your kids, it's God's gift. Lead them some days, hang back a little others. If you have the energy for a craft, fun vacation or planned event- go for it. If not, let the times you do make up for it. Just be sure there is pressure in both directions.

Don't give up. Don't over do it. Be the balance.

The Message Bible, Ecc 3:
There’s an opportune time to do things, a right time for everything on the earth:
2-8 A right time for birth and another for death,
A right time to plant and another to reap,
A right time to kill and another to heal,
A right time to destroy and another to construct,
A right time to cry and another to laugh,
A right time to lament and another to cheer,
A right time to make love and another to abstain,
A right time to embrace and another to part,
A right time to search and another to count your losses,
A right time to hold on and another to let go,
A right time to rip out and another to mend,
A right time to shut up and another to speak up,
A right time to love and another to hate,
A right time to wage war and another to make peace.
But in the end, does it really make a difference what anyone does? I’ve had a good look at what God has given us to do—busywork, mostly. True, God made everything beautiful in itself and in its time—but he’s left us in the dark, so we can never know what God is up to, whether he’s coming or going. I’ve decided that there’s nothing better to do than go ahead and have a good time and get the most we can out of life. That’s it—eat, drink, and make the most of your job. It’s God’s gift.

Honestly with love,
Rach



April 8, 2014

Mood Shift Meme

Why Not?

Why not make my own little cute meme? Why not I say....

You know how you just have that feeling? In your gut? You can sleep standing up, you want to eat all the things, you want to snap because your husband accidentally brushed you as he walked by. You hold it in. You try to control yourself. You cry at the Pampers commercial. You know it is coming....

As the kind, warm girl I am I thought it fitting to warn my husband of what I could feel brooding.  A warning that all the words coming from his mouth, no matter how lovely and sympathetic, will not be right. They will be wrong. WRONG. 

Standing in the kitchen, he was about to pass me by and accidentally brush me and so I sang this worship song, Revival, we sing in church regularly to warn my dear, sweet husband.  I sang it and we both started cracking up laughing. I thought I would share this to lighten what may or may not be brooding in your loins and to protect husbands everywhere.

Honestly with Love,

Rach