Saturday, September 12, 2009

My so-called perfect life.

We took last week to soak up the sun and fun in Destin. Our last hurrah for the Summer of 2009. Me, Brian and the girls met up with my very best college-girlfriend, Kristi and her family. I see her just a few times a year. A whole week with her? Heaven.

So really, I enjoyed hiding from the sun, under the big umbrellas and chunky sunglasses. But Brian and the girls soaked it up! When I worked at Disney, I used to giggle from my lifeguard stand at the sweet little British children who were SLATHERED in sunscreen.

So thick, you would need a butter knife to scrape it off. They were so cute…and SO white with sunscreen.

Now. Fast-forward 13 years.

Brian and I must be half-British. Our children left the condo every morning looking like cream cheese coated bagels. And we loved it. They played for 4, 5, 6 hours in the sun and got a tiny golden color and absolutely no burn. (Stephanie, I used that great sunscreen from Arbonne. Loved it.)

The beach was perfect. Bleached white sand, crystal clear blue water, gorgeous skies, and wonderful weather. All really was PERFECT…but I was not perfect. Not even close.

I have been super-discouraged recently. The girls are in, what me and everyone else is calling, one of ‘those stages’ that children go through. The fussy, not compliant, not-fun-to-be around, bad attitude, not really even that sweet, non-responsive, uncooperative, grumpy, whiny stage.

So, as their Mother, and the one who is with them constantly, I have heard all the fussing, all the gripping, and tried everything in my own power to fix it. I have done time-out, popped bottoms, taken things away, bribed, memorized scripture, had them memorize scripture…nothing seems to work. It hasn’t seemed to change anything.

So, I am discouraged.

Even optimistic, happy Brian is struggling, a little, with this. So, while at the beach, I talked to my sweet friend. She is such an encourager, but of course her two girls are little angels.

God took us to Destin, where we had some time to sit, relax and think and had the girls in this season of life, for me to realize this. There is nothing I can do.

It is ME that God wants to change. NOT them.

It is ME whose attention He wants. It is me He is shaping, molding and growing. And it hurts.

After church today, God showed me this.

Philippians 3:20 ~ But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.

Then it goes on.

Phillipians 4:1stand firm in the Lord, dear Jennie (it actually says friends, but as I read it, I see Jennie.)

Jesus Christ is absolutely worth it, he is worth it all. My girls poor behavior. He is using my sweet little girls to draw me to HIM. My life is SO not-perfect. And you know what? For that, I am glad. Because as I struggle with these girls and keeping them on the path, keeping their behavior acceptable and keeping their eyes and hearts on the Lord, I realize what a work God is doing in ME.

No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. Hebrews 12:11

I love that. (Thank you Erin A…it really is finally sinking in…) So, I am being trained by the Lord.

Hebrews 12:1-3 says, "1Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart."

So now, I am trying to not grow weary and lose heart. Correcting always, giving tons of love, giving grace, still getting discouraged but knowing that this is the Lords time. He created this time for me to fall at His feet and learn what it is He would have me to learn. Makes me feel loved and adored. Like a daughter of the most High King. It also is painful and it makes me want to cry.

I want to run this race and finish well.

So I am pressing on.

And I am praying more than ever.

Reading my bible more than ever.

Memorizing scripture more than ever.

And being patient as the Lord works on ME.

Not them.

I also got to see my sweet, sweet Love, Stephanie. Dinner conversation encouraged Brian and me to venture into new exciting things. Huge. Thank you Girl.

I love this family!

These two cuties. One month apart.

And older sister and Carlisle, one year apart.

My sunglasses broke. So I borrowed Carlisle’s Hannah Montana’s.


gillian said...

Oh girl, I wish I had read this before I saw you at Awana today, or maybe you hadn't posted yet, i don't know...but i know exactly what you're going through with the girls...i've been going through it with Owen for YEARS and i JUST realized over the past few months that it was ME and not HIM! I'm praying for you as you go through this! My bff and I are reading/studying a book calleld 'The Ministry of Motherhood'

Love the pictures, they're beautiful!!!

The Severances said...

J - Wow. Sounds like He is doing so much. What a beautiful way to claim HIS promises. HE is so faithful. Looking forward to talking more about it all.