like the Hebrews

Each and every day I have a simple goal. To rise early (before the girls) to read my Bible. Each and every day I fail. Genevieve usually wakes me up. It is difficult to have time alone with God when there is a rambunctious toddler in your lap.

Until today.

I was awake at 5:30. Kate came in wanting to sleep with mommy. We lay there, neither one of us sleeping. Until I finally just got up. I told her she couldn’t get up until the clock said 8:00. She was upset, but she eventually fell back to sleep, thankfully. I made my coffee and sat down with my Bible. It has been so long since I tried to just read it, I wasn’t even sure where to start. so, I just found where I had left off last time, months ago, and began there.

The Hebrews had just left Egypt and were trying to outrun the Egyptian army. (I am sure you all know the story.) God brings the Hebrews through the Red Sea on dry land and drowns the Egyptians. The Hebrews rejoice. They sing and dance in praise and worship to God for his deliverance.

Then disaster.

Bitter water. Bitter attitudes. Angry with Moses and with God. How dare this happen to them, they cry! We would have been better off in Egypt, they say. Really?! How quickly they forgot God’s deliverance. It was just in the previous chapter. So, it couldn’t have been but the previous week, right? I am no Bible scholar, but they weren’t even getting their manna yet, so they hadn’t been away from Egypt very long. They had just seen the greatest miracle of their lives. The Red Sea crossing and yet they were doubting God.

Sounds a lot like me.

Just a week ago, I was praising God in church for his love and care. And this week? I am a complaining, weepy, whiny mess. I don’t know how I could have forgotten already. But, I seem to have. I needed this reminder this morning. God is taking care of me and my girls. Even though the water may seem bitter to me right now. He will sweeten it. I just need to trust Him. I don’t need to forget. I need to remember His blessings that He gives in the forefront of my mind.

God does love me. The Bible tells me so. I am not alone. He is right there with me. He is taking care of us. Here are 3 of my blessings right here.

mother's day

I hope I can remember this lesson longer than the Hebrews.

these days…

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Are rough. Absolutely mind numbingly rough. Sometimes, in the night, Genevieve will be crying, and I will think to myself, what in the world is that noise? Oh, please stop making that racket! I am trying to sleep, here. Oh, wait! The baby!!

You think I am kidding? I am not.

Right now it is 5 am. I have been up for an hour and a half. I finally got the baby to go back to sleep, but now I am up. I have to be up soon, anyway. So, I might as well get some things done.

I had forgotten how absolutely, utterly tiring newborns are. Combine that with an energetic 4 and 2 year old and you have a recipe for exhaustion.

I am enjoying my new baby. Everything is just RUSHED! I have to hurry and accomplish things while the baby is sleeping or happy. For example, I feed the girls, then nurse the baby, get her settled. Jump up and clean the kitchen as quickly as possible, because someone will need me. Whether it is a letting the dog out/in, someone on the potty, an owie, disciplining, reading books, whatever. There is always something or someone that needs Mommy.

Genevieve is finally taking a long morning naps, so I am getting a little bit of quality time with the other two girls. But, with Brian gone, evenings are long and bath time/bedtime is a nightmare. Slowly, but surely, we are settling into a new routine, change is just hard. Hard on all of us.

I get frustrated looking at some of the blogs that I follow or pinterest. Hardly anyone in the internet world is truly honest about their daily lives. I know that their lives aren’t picture perfect, so why portray them that way? As much as I enjoy sewing and crafting and cooking, there is only SO much perfection I can observe. Most days, I don’t even get around to getting dressed, much less craft/sew/shop in a coordinated outfit, down to the matching flats. I usually get spit up down my back within 30 minutes of my morning, just like with Isabel, my new perfume scent is called Glorious Motherhood.

Click on that link. Look at Isabel and Kate. How little and precious they were two and a half years ago. Now look at them.

I read that post, before I linked it up. I realize I had a difficult time adjusting to 2 children, just like I am having difficulties adjusting to 3. It’s just that I am lonely in the evenings. During the day, everything is fine. But almost every single dinner time, someone spills a whole glass or bowl of something. Isabel spilled her bowl of hot soup on her lap Saturday, burning her little legs. I was trying to calm the baby when it happened. So, I put the baby on the floor quickly, jerked off Isabel’s shorts, stuck her in the sink to spray cold water on her. While Kate is calmly dumping an entire box of crackers on the table to eat with her soup. Genevieve is still screaming.

Last night, I accidentally deleted the pictures on my camera from the past 2 weeks. It included my baby shower pictures. So upsetting. I had also taken some precious pictures of the girls Sunday morning after church for their Daddy. Sunday night, we lost the keys to the house and were locked out after church for about an hour while we waited for someone to come help us break in. A lady that I really admire reminds me weekly “to stay above the chaos.” Sometimes that is seems so difficult. I am so afraid of becoming that crazy, frazzled mother who yells and screams at their kids. I am terrified of becoming a bitter, hateful wife because I am alone 6 months a year. So, I turn to the only One who can help. I was encouraged this morning when I read Psalms 77. He says:

In the day of my trouble I sought the Lord: my sore ran into the night, and ceased not: my soul refused to be comforted. I remembered God, and was troubled: I complained, and my spirit was overwhelmed. Thou holdest mine eyes waking: I am so troubled I cannot speak. 

I am so thankful I am not the only one who thinks this way. I am not the only one who feels despair and cannot even vocalize it to the One who can help. Further down in this passage he says:

I will surely remember the works of the Lord: surely I will remember thy wonders of old. I will meditate also of all they work, and talk of all thy doings… Thou are the God that doest wonders.

I just need to focus on my blessings, trusting in Him. He has been faithful, taking care of me and my girls time and time again while Brian is gone. I just need to remember that.

My blessings:

More blessings than I deserve….

last week

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Was horrible on so many levels and in so many ways.

I cannot even begin to tell you how rotten it was. But I am going to try. It started out with me being absolutely exhausted. Mama and I had a yard sale together at her house over the weekend. We went to church Sunday morning, but I could not seem to get out of my chair for church Sunday night. Plus, Kate and Isabel took extra long naps and still weren’t awake when it was time to leave. When Kate finally did awake, she was very hyper. She likes to dance in front of the mirror. So, this night she is dancing and twirling, completely out of control. She trips and falls forward. She landed with her neck wedged onto the edge of a wooden stool, bruising her neck and throat. Needless to say, it scared me to death. She is choking and making these strangling noises. She is drooling all over me while hysterically crying. She has this huge mark across her throat. When I finally calm her down, she can only whisper. She says she can’t swallow.

Then, I made a mistake.

I googled bruised throat, then called my mom.

Of course, she says, RUSH HER TO THE EMERGENCY ROOM!!!

I say, I don’t know. I am think I am going to wait. It is about the time that Brian wakes up over yonder, and sometimes we skype when he gets dressed. So, I told Mama I would call Brian and ask him.

While we are skyping, Kate is in my lap. He is watching her, but she doesn’t realize it. She keeps swallowing and smiling at him. Her voice is still hoarse, but she seems okay at this point. So, we decided not to take her.

The next day, Isabel and Kate are taking a bath. I keep hearing lots of splashing, thumping, and giggling. So, I decide to see what the commotion is. They are both standing up, Kate has her leg up and Isabel is holding it…..then somehow they both fall in slow motion. I see Isabel’s mouth smack the edge of the tub, blood spurts EVERYWHERE! I pick her up and wrap her in a towel. We rush into the kitchen where I pour sugar all in her mouth and under her lip to stop the bleeding. (A trick I learned from my Aunt Trudy.) Poor Isabel ends up with a huge fat lip for several days. It was even black on the inside.

She liked showing it off.
Isabel got into the vaseline and spread it all over her body and clothes. While I was attempting to clean up slimy, greasy vaseline, Kate was skyping with daddy. Well, she was sitting in the office chair in front of the computer. Wait, let me rephrase that, she wasn’t just sitting there, she was twirling the chair around and around. She accidentally hit my coffee cup and coffee went everywhere! All over the desk, computer, bills, letters, papers, and pictures I had just printed out to mail to Grandma. UGH!
This was also the week I decide to redo a dresser for the girls’ bedroom (more on that later) AND their closet AND wash all the winter clothes. All with a serious bad attitude on my part. The girls did not want to cooperate with me at all. Disobedience was the norm. Then, I sliced my finger open on a knife. We also had several more falling downs and other such injuries.
Every single time some disaster occurred, it would frustrate me to no end. Every little thing annoyed me. I wish I could blame it on single motherhood. But, that isn’t true. I had this attitude problem at times when Brian was home.
Everything and everybody was getting on my nerves. I didn’t feel like making dinner, breakfast, or lunch. I don’t even think the girls brushed their teeth but a few times. One day, I literally just screamed and screamed. No words, just screams. Then tears. The poor girls just looked at me. Kate then ran to the playroom and cleaned it up. It was almost spotless. I have to admit I was really proud of her cleaning job.
The Lord has been working on my heart about this again. I get so caught up in myself and my selfishness. I stop reading His word. I stop praying. I take my focus off being what He wants me to be and instead do what I want. I then become a miserable mess. I react to things in a way that is displeasing to God and to those around me. I become a horrible mother and wife.
Now don’t get me wrong. I am not saying that reading my Bible and praying every day makes everything hunky dory and no annoying things happen and all of a sudden I am a perfect little mommy. (Like that horribly long sentence?) I am still human and my children are still bad at times. But, when I make my focus pleasing Jesus instead of myself, my reactions are usually calmer.
I couldn’t have a higher calling than to be a mother. It is the most wonderful thing in the world to be allowed to do. That is what God wants me to be. A keeper at home. A teacher of my children, a helper to my husband.
Titus 2:4-5 says,
That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.

I have been working on a Bible study entitled Holy Women. It goes through Proverbs 31, Titus 2, and lots of different women as examples. It has truly been a blessing and a help. Lots of things I didn’t even know. Not only am I learning them, but I am learning why. I also recently read a book called, Created to be his Helpmeet  by Debi Pearl which really helped me a lot the last few weeks Brian was home.

So, this week, I have been focusing more on God and the girls instead of me, myself, and I. Once again, this has proven to be the way to live my life. Now, the girls still fuss, argue, scream, and get hurt. But, I seem to be handling it better. Because I spent time this morning (and another morning or two) in His word and in prayer. It wasn’t hours and hours, but it was enough to help me to focus on Him.

For you other young girls and mothers who seem to be struggling and have days or weeks where all you want to do is scream and pull your hair out, cry and pitch a fit. I suggest getting up in the morning before your children do and spend some time with Jesus. Then you can truly enjoy moments such as these instead of thinking about all the mess they are making, and all the work you still have to do.


Happy mothering!