Wednesday, March 28, 2012

What Tool Are You?

Hard lesson to swallow:  Every mother is good at something, but no mother is good at everything.

Question: What is the something you are good at, and how will that something be useful to the kingdom of God through your children?  Because I firmly believe that God gave us the particular children He did for the particular reasons He has.  We just don't know God's mind=)  And in the process of seeking His mind, we learn more about Him and His plan for us, not just our children.

I'm learning more and more that my children are a tool in the hand of a big God to work me into the masterpiece He is still creating, and the vice versa is true as well.  I am a tool in the hand of a big God who is shaping my children into the masterpiece He wants them to be.  I am a tool.

I am a tool.....think about that.

If I am a tool, I have no control over myself.  And to be a good tool, I must relinquish myself  into the hands of the Craftsman, only He knows how to use me properly and effectively.  If I try to control myself, nothing gets accomplished.  Anyone besides God is less talented and less qualified to guide me for the work at hand.  So what kind of tool am I in the hands of God?  How has He fashioned me, and how is He using me to fashion my children and the others in my life?

I'm not a paintbrush.  I don't make life for my children colorful and fancy and fun and exciting.  I don't coat their days with crafts and fun.  I wrongly envy those that do.

I'm not a magnifying glass.  Every opportunity of my day is not intentionally crafted into a life lesson.  My children sit in long silences in the car sometimes.  I answer questions when asked, but don't ask them very often.  Every task in my life doesn't have a deeper, spiritual meaning.  I wrongly envy those that do.

I'm really not sure what tool I am yet.  Maybe someone with an outside view could let me know.  I do know this though.  I think I know the message I want my children to learn.  The Holy Spirit whispered this thought to me today, and I'm still unpacking it in my brain, but here it is.  I want my kids to grow up knowing that Life is good, but God is better.

Let me explain.  You see, I don't need my children to be rocket scientists.  I don't need them to be world renown theologians reaching the far ends of the earth for Christ.  I just need them to love God.  I don't need them to please me.  I just want them to please God.

And in the midst of God's pursuit of the hearts of my children, I want them to know that life is good!  It's hard, but it's good too.  It can be fun and full of joy when you are living to simply love God.

Life is good, but God is better.
Choosing to spend your life in the pursuit of knowledge is good, but choosing to spend your life in the pursuit of the knowledge of God is better!
Choosing to serve others is good, but choosing to serve God is better!
Choosing to love a husband or wife is good, but choosing to love God abandoned is so much better!
Choosing to find a career focused around your strengths is good, choosing to let God use your strengths for His purposes is so much better!

The best part of all? When you choose God first, He often blesses you in return with all the "good" things as well!  You get the best of both worlds when you choose God first.

I always see life in extremes, constantly looking for the balance of those extremes, so maybe God is using me like a level in the life of my children, trying to help them balance because the Lord knows that's how He uses them in my life--as a constant reminder of what and how things can get so out of balance so quickly.  With just a nudge one way or the other, the bubble of life is floating in the wrong direction.  I need the Creator's steady hand to balance my life just so, and in the process, through me, He will balance the lives of my children as well.

So today, for now, I see myself as a level in the hand of God.  He's showing me how to balance.  I'm sure he can use me at different times in life as many other tools in the life of my children.  I look at my own parents and think of the days they were hammers, nailing the truths of God into my life over and over again, despite their and my pain.  I see how they were tape measures in my life, constantly being a point of reference for just how far I needed to go or long I needed to endure. They were also often times the wrench that gripped tight and twisted me out of a tight situation.  They have been the sandpaper that annoyingly rubbed away the rough spots in my life, leaving behind a smooth, finished surface.

My parents have been and really continue to be many tools in my life.  I can only hope to be just as useful in the hands of the Master Craftsman in the lives of my own children as they were and are in mine.  Time will tell.

For these days, for now, I think I am a level, constantly trying to find the right balance and center to life.  Trying to find where the mark needs to be made on the walls of the hearts of my children.  Finding the point where a nail of truth needs to be hammered home.  God is using me as His level.

How is God using you?

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Sunday, March 18, 2012

Savannah Prays

So I've been wanting to post this for a while, but leave it to my most wonderful babysitter in the whole wide world to finally get a decent video of it=)

I'm not sure where my daughter learned to pray like this (and let me assure you, this is only the first few minutes of what is usually at least five minutes long).  Let me emphasize--we DO NOT pray like this at home! I would love to take some credit for this, but this is totally not of Joey or me, so I will chalk yet another thank you up to BSF and their fantastic children's program, and I will also say, I think my daughter might have a gifting in prayer if there is such a thing.

You be the judge.  Again, this is just the opening...

So I've been praying for God to teach me how to pray more effectively and more diligently and more genuinely.  Think maybe He's trying to tell me something through this sweet girl?  Genuine thanks, prayers for unity, blessings for others, scripture?  Not sure I could come up with a better outline=)

Oh how the Lord must wish we could all keep our child-like hearts and attitudes!  May I never become so prideful that I can't be as an innocent child before my Lord.  Happy praying=)

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