Saturday, November 29, 2008

"Bella" Redemptive Value

I watched the movie "Bella" the other night. Only because so many people raved about its redemptive value and how pro-life it was. At the end of the movie I couldn't believe that it was over! I guess the "redemptive value" everyone was excited about was that the unwed main character decided not to abort her baby. But the craziness of the whole film was that instead of giving the baby up for adoption or marrying the male supportive role, and having the family she expressed that she wanted "more than anything", she instead gives him the baby to raise-although it was not his child and she stays in New York living her life and at the end of the movie she comes to visit the girl-obviously for the first time when the child is about 3 or 4 years old. It was ridiculous. Moreover, she "gave" the baby to this man, who was formally her co worker to raise because years prior, he was involved in a terrible accident that resulted in the death of a little girl who was no more than 3. So I guess in the end he felt redeemed and forgiven because he had the chance to give life to the "little accidental baby" his co worker clearly did not want. The whole ending, the whole reconciliation of tragedies in both the lives of main characters was so selfish. The woman eventually decided that she shouldn't kill this child by aborting it, so she gave it away to be raised without a mother, because it was too much for her to deal with. That in itself is tragic not redemptive! She felt she couldn't be a good mom. She didn't even try! And her coworker thought that he could once again be a "good and happy" if took care of this unwanted child and prove to the world that he was not the irresponsible, careless person that was involved in a tragic accident years prior. This was redemptive? The only thing redemptive thing that I got out of the whole movie was that Jesus made it so abundantly clear, that you "being good" does not redeem you or score you points with Him. Yet we strive and strive to prove ourselves to ourselves and to others that we matter and that we are important because we are "good" and do "good"things and we volunteer, and give to the needy. It is so hard to believe and get through our heads that Jesus loves us through and through and that being good or striving thereof only leads us down around to performance orientation, where we perform to get the approval of people, and of God, which usually stems from living a childhood where we had to strive to get the approval of apparents. Know this, that He knew us before we were born, He knit us together in our mother's womb (Psalm 139). All have sinned and have fallen short of Gods Glory, but the gift of God is eternal life (Romans 6:23, Romans 3:23) . God came that we may have life and life more abundantly (John 10:10). He wants us to experience life on our jobs, life in our families, life in our thought processes, life in our health, Life in the decisions we make, or don't make. Only He can redeem us. Only He has the power to turn around impossible situations. Yet why is it when we hurt, we blame Him and run away from Him? And why is it that when he does something for us, that can not be explained away yet by saying it was a miracle from God, we don't acknowledge Him or give Him any credit? Where is the redemptive value in that?

Monday, November 24, 2008

Never mind Proverbs 31 ! What about Proverbs 17:22?

The evidence is a bit fuzzy but that's over a pound of Cheerios on the floor. The conversation went a little something like this:

"Mommy can you get me more CEREAL????" Noahkeem usually wants his food right now.


"Spisssssssshhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh" (that's the sound of the Cheerios spilling on the floor)

"Haaaaaaaaaha haha haa haa ahaaaa.... Ahhhhh Hahahahah ahahahahh haa aahaaaaaaaaaa!!!!"

That's the roar of laughter that we all let out because I started it all.

Now what would possess me to run and get the camera instead of cleaning up the cereal? The same reason why I always grab it when crazy stuff happens. It's just all too funny! I had to take a picture to remind myself to laugh at myself more often.

Besides, the absence of silliness and fun during the course of the day makes this momma look like she needs resuscitation of one form or another.

"A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones." Proverbs 17:22

25 Things I am thankful for

I am forever taking pictures of animals. This one I took about a year ago at a museum that has a little animal sanctuary/zoo/habitat thing going on on its property. Unfortunately this was as much as my camera would allow me to zoom in. I'm old school and I am about to revert to my slr camera that is not digital and just get the pics saved to disc when I develop them. My slr just captures my subjects with more clarity and superiority. Yet I do like the convenience of the digital cam.
Now that I have gotten all of that off my chest allow me to run down my thankful list.

Things I am thankful for:

  1. My house ; Its true, there is no place like home.
  2. My family that fills my minivan and my heart
  3. My minivan; it gets me from point A to B
  4. butterflies & moths
  5. my extended family
  6. friends near and far
  7. the smell of baby powder
  8. chalk
  9. the lake
  10. hugs from little people who should be in bed already
  11. a safe place to worship
  12. the gift of hearing
  13. the ability to discern if the cry I hear is for attention or if someone is really hurt
  14. A merciful God who gives second chances
  15. the convenience of modern appliances
  16. the ability to walk
  17. the gift of sight
  18. seeing crumbs under the kitchen table that reminds me that I have been blessed with 4 awesome kids who share with the floor.
  19. Lemonade- the most natural, corn syrup, high fructose, and dye free drink that I love in the summer time.
  20. Green grass
  21. books to read
  22. A Savior who loves me just the way I am
  23. watercolors
  24. play dough
  25. Artificial Christmas Trees; I can put it up and take it down when I want to.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

What are you talking about? God is already here.

Step by step I am realizing that God meets you where you are. Growing up I was led to believe that you are to pray, have quiet time, read the Word etc. before the crack of dawn. The more you pray, the longer you pray the more holy you will become and you should be reading your Bible through each year. This is so not true. I just don't fit into that puzzle. When Cookie was a newborn she would wake up for a 2:30 am feeding so I would keep a Bible in her room and read and have my little 15 minutes with God then. When Rocco was born, I fit my "quiet time" in where ever I could. When Noahkeem was born, I was so busy crying out to God for help and always looking for my Bible, I only prayed that God considered all of that "quiet time" Now that Dolly is 21 months, Bible reading happens before bed, prayer happens all throughout the day. Worship is changing a diaper with a spirit of excellence and showing little ones how to lift their hands and say Hallelujah before they jump off of the changing table and into my arms. We are always in the presence of God. Although I have been told we have to sing 5 songs and pray a certain amount of time, and praise the Lord in between all of that in order to "enter" into the presence of God. God is here now. He is not some far off being in the sky. He is watching as I am blogging -right now. You know what makes me smile? The fact that the Word says that he sings over us with a happy song. Zephaniah 3:17, New Living Translation says:
"For the Lord your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears.[a] He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.” That's the kind of Heavenly Father I have been waiting for. That's the kind of presence we live in, that you live in. Now go rest in Him. He's already with you.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

3 time's a charm! Only because she's a 4th child

My first born was potty trained by age 3, so was my second, my third-that's another story. My dear Dolly however, has been pooping and peeing in the potty several times a day. Yes,She is still in Diapers. I refuse to waste money on Pull-Ups with this one, she will go from Diapers to Underwear when she is completely trained.

As an American Mommy of course I'm making a big deal about all of this. If I were in the Motherland, and she had to pee, I would take her out of the sling that I no doubt would be wearing and sit her down on my feet and open my feet a little so that everything would trickle to the ground. When she was done, I would put her back into the sling and continue my work in the field/jungle. I wouldn't be blogging about it. It would just be life to me. Just a natural pattern of progression.

She seems to have done a lot of things her older sister, never attempted. She has climbed on tables and pushed around the chandelier, climbed on the outside of the stairs, holding onto the railing, hid in dark closets thinking its funny-when there is no hide and seek going on, climbed into the tub fully clothed to take another bath with her siblings. She has always helped herself to my lipstick and shared it with her big brother...the list goes on. She will always be my Dolly.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Don't even ask!

First and foremost my dear crock pot was sparking up like the 4th of July last week. The cord was kind of caught between the ceramic pot and the metal thing you sit it in and all I could say was, "Look out, Noahkeem, What just happened?" Right when I was developing a wonderful relationship with her-the crock pot.. everything just blew up. No more homemade 12 alarm chili, soup, roasted chicken, no more anything.. at least not waiting for us after church.

I am proud to say that Dolly sat on the potty today and pooped 3 times in a row! We all went up in the bathroom cheering and clapping over this natural bodily function. She's only 21 months. Now we have to get Noahkeem to do the same thing everyday, in the potty.

Why I stayed up till 2 trying to watch Iron Man, I have no idea. All I know is that when the sun was shining in the bedroom this morning, I could hardly open my eyes. When the kids asked for brownies instead of breakfast, I don't even know how I managed to cut them, hand them out, walk back upstairs, get back in bed- all with my eyes shut because I was so tired, and the sun was too bright. 30 minutes later I realized, I should start going to bed earlier and in the mean time, get up and start my day. It's so fun to be me.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

What do you do?

This is a funny question. Especially if its followed up with, what do you do for yourself. This is what I do. I teach. I take care of my kids. And that is more than some do in a lifetime. It still bewilders me when I answer this question, with a simple answer why the interviewer looks at me like I am throwing my life away. I also tell many that raising my kids is my ministry. Why on earth do I consider that a ministry? How dare I consider that? What on earth gives me the audacity to consider nose -wiping, pancake flipping and homeschooling a ministry? I have 4 minors in my full time care, placed there by the miraculous hand of God, to care for temporarily. I am called to give them food, clothes, and shelter. I am admonished to educate them in His ways over and over again. .Whether I am at home or walking along the road or going to bed at night or getting up in the morning. (CEV). Would shipping them down the street to get a secular education and unsupervised peer influence be easier, yes it would. But who is called that doesn't have to depend on God for strength, peace, and discernment?

At any given time we swing on a pendulum that either registers a clean domain or loud, utter, chaos. I now ask, Who Cares? Why do people who know nothing of me or think they do care?Why do we spend so much time comparing ourselves to others? Why do we assume others have it so much better than us? Why do we assume that others have it all together? Galatians 6:4, Contemporary English Version, "Do your own work well, and then you will have something to be proud of. But don't compare yourself to others". Need I say more?
My "well" is different than yours. And your idea of doing something well looks different than mine. I do not have a theological degree. But I am still a minister. I am not an accomplished musician but I am still a singer/ songwriter. Never choreographed a performance but,I am still a dancer. I am called and I answer on many levels . And that my friend is what I do. What do you do?

Saturday, November 8, 2008

It's already started

I returned some lovely spoiled meat to Walmart yesterday and they were already gearing up for Christmas. Part of me doesn't care for this time of year and I already feel myself shutting down. It's all about buying stuff that we don't need, going into debt, putting up with traffic and shoppers who run red lights, buying tons of food for a huge meal saturated in fat, salt and all the trimmings which is certain to make your blood pressure rise, your cholesterol go up and your hips wide.

I hate the fact that so many people expect you to give a gift or a card and it is not even their birthday- It's Jesus' birthday. We give Santa Claus more thought during the season than the one who created the season in the first place. Somewhere in between all that we try to squeeze Jesus in with a little pageant here and a little birthday cake there. But who are we fooling? We all know that the commercialization of Christmas rules our Holy-day. (Holiday)

I'm not crazy about Christmas shopping. But we live in a society that has groomed us into believing the true meaning of Christmas is for us to "give". And that usually means gifts.

Yet I am not a total Scrooge. I do plan to give my Children a few things. Send out a few cards and give out ornaments to a couple of my favorite people as I have been doing every Christmas for the last 4 years.

What they( the kids in this house) usually enjoy the most is firing up the Christmas Tree with all the lights and taking out all of the ornaments and of course eating what ever I put on the table December 25th. 2 years ago we grilled Italian Sausages for our Christmas meal. Last Christmas we had a simple meal of Brisket, Asparagus, Rice and Macaroni & Cheese. I'm not quite sure what I'm serving this year, I'm just concentrating on Thanks Giving.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Morning the loss of Matthew

Over the last year at least 6 hermit crabs have come into our lives and marched right out. Lastnight sometime, Matthew who has been with us only 1 month died. I knew he was on his way out because he kept staying in one corner of the tank, despite fresh water and getting spritzed occasionally. All of his legs were off and next to him when I peeked into the tank this morning. I guess that we should just stick to webkinz, they seem to have a longer shelf life around here.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The election results

The results of waiting on line only 1 hour, taking Cookie to dance, and watching the election updates til the cows came home equate to this:

Everything under my bathroom vanity taken out and "nicely" placed around the house.

One broken guardrail

a box of 13 gallon garbage bags strewn all over the living room floor

a winter coat in the hallway

dirty dishes piled high

and one 5 year old with Mary Kay night emollient cream all in his hair.

And the Democrats keep telling me change is a' comin' ? When?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

I thought I never would see the day

I told my mother years ago, that there would never be a black president because no one wants a black president and if one were elected, he or she would be assassinated. I was a preteen when I made those statements Well here the day is,2008, Barack Obama is our new president. Although I do not agree with MANY of his views and politics, Our job is to honor whoever is in office.

I would admonish all of us who like to talk or throw rocks, find ways to be active and take dominion in any area of government local and beyond so that your influence, Godly influence is felt . For some reason, God wanted you to be born in this day, to see this day, and to do a work for Him in this day that he may be glorified. Let's not dishonor him by the things we say about who is or who is not in office. Lets not dishonor him by not acting when we can act and not praying when we can pray. God is in love with Democrats, Republicans, Independents and all those in between.

May God Protect our country and God Bless America. Good Night.

I'm a little slow

Obviously I don't spend every waking moment updating my blog but, then through the course of the day I say to myself, "Oh , I have to blog about this or that". Well to play a little catch up here are some of my recent happenings:
  • Noahkeem facilitated our beta fish's return to the bottom of the sea. Translation: He took him out of the 2 1/2 gallon tank, had him in his hand, squeezed him put him back in the tank, knocked over the filter in the process, gave access to Rocco so that he could put some quarters in the tank, and consequently causing "Isabelle" an untimely death.
  • I baked a delicious smelling loaf of white wheat bread and left in on the counter top at 9:00 am yesterday and 3 hours later upon my return I discovered that the bread was hacked up and mutilated because a set of 5 year old hands grabbed chunks of it and ate it at his own leisure. (This is following a warning at 7am not to do this).
  • Dolly is going around saying" Poo Poo" and "Pee Pee" and taking her diaper off. She is also starting to sit on the little potty pretending to Pee and Poop. This is a hopeful sign that she will learn early and usher us into the "No More Diaper Zone". Which is the season of life where you skip the baby isle altogether because everyone under 18 functions as a semi-independent pre-adult. (eat the same foods, with the same consistency and use the same lotions and wear clothes that aren't paper or do not have Velcro).
  • Noahkeem keeps telling us that he is a man. "I a Man". Some one in Walmart or WalMark as Noahkeem likes to say said to him yesterday, "Excuse me little man" Then Noahkeem said to me "See Mommie I am a Man!" Breaking News Flash: Little Man needs to start putting his bowl in the kitchen sink and maybe get a paper route to offset some of his "Littlemanish Liabilities".