Friday, April 13, 2012

Fighting off the "what-ifs"

Does anyone else get bogged down in the "what-ifs"?  I mean bogged down: can't get off; wish you could do something as cool as you saw on Pinterest; wish I wasn't so tired during A's naptime; what if we had another $100k to spend on a house; what if we lived in a different city; how did my house get so cluttered; why doesn't my table and dinner look like a 4 star restaurant; why do I waste my time doing this - kind of bogged down.  Not that I live in negative land; I'm not bummed about any of the things above.  (Believe me, I would love to have that extra 100k, but...)  I am completely realistic and feel like I use my time well and am excited for what the future holds for my little family.  But yesterday I just felt behind all day.  All day!

I have always had an extremely active imagination.  That's one reason I have always loved to read so much.  In 2nd grade I imagined my name next to Nancy Drew's.  In 4th grade I wondered how a cute boy from class (a prince, of course) could find away to climb up to my room to rescue me since I didn't have hair like Rapunzel.  (Would he use a hot air balloon?)  In high school my "what ifs" involved the future: what if my high school boyfriend follow me to Samford?  Would we get married and move back to Lakeland to live happily ever after?  In college my "what ifs" seemed to be about other people: what if I looked like her?  what if I had clothes like her?  What if?  What if?  What if?

Now it is simply an imagination thing: I watch a show about kidnapping and lay awake wondering what I would do in the same scenario.  The initial offer we made on a house didn't work out, so I spent the next two days "what iffing" how we will bring a baby home into this two bedroom house.

When it comes down to it - active imagination or not - none of this is really a good thing.  How much mental energy do I waste contemplating a life I don't have?  Or beating myself up over my lack of magazine-layout-home-making-ability?  Or how my child looks just "normal" in her Carter's outfit and crazy hair?  Or how much easier _____ would be if Brad would just ______.  It's just so ridiculous!  It drains me and makes me want to drain our bank account to get these things - as if they matter.  It makes me a tired and annoyed wife and mother.  When in reality I cannot imagine my life much better.  Most women would be green with envy if they knew all the stuff Brad does for us.  And I'm pretty sure that even on her "normal" days, A is the cutest gal ever, and I'm so thankful for her (usually) sweet disposition.

I am thankful for a God that is all-knowing and powerful, and still interested in the little things of my life.  After "what-iffing" myself yesterday into a frenzy of work in the kitchen and laundry, a new long list of homes to check out, a list of activities for A and I, and all around exhaustion, the Holy Spirit woke me up this morning.  I am fairly consistent about waking up early enough for a quiet time before Addie gets up, except on Fridays.  That's our morning for breakfast out with Brad, so I wake up running.  This morning, however, I was up eeeaaarrrllly, and not by my own design.  :)  God had some words for me about desires of the flesh vs. desires of the Spirit.  He reminded me that just because I've been a Christian for a long time doesn't mean the "old" self doesn't rear her ugly head every once in a while - or daily, haha - and I need live in the freedom He provides.  Amen.

Oh, by the way, this afternoon we negotiated a contract for a house I love.  I love how God works.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

He is Risen! He is Risen indeed.

Hey all.  Dusting off the ole' blog today while we wait for Daddy to get home from church to celebrate Easter lunch.  I hope you found a place to worship this morning and celebrate our Savior's victory over death.

We have had such a laid-back spring.  Lots of new things happening - potty training attempts, serious house-hunting, Brad basically working two jobs, and a couple of fun trips - but nothing huge.  (Well, yesterday when A tee-teed in the potty for the first time, it was a pretty big deal, haha.)

Oh, and we're expecting baby number 2!  I just realized I never got around to posting that.  We are thrilled and can't wait until September to meet this little guy or gal.  This pregnancy has been very different from my first, so I can't help wondering if baby Gowing # 2 will be a boy.  Brad, however, is still convinced we are having two girls, and has been so confident he's almost made me a believer, too.  (It would be pretty great to have a sweet pair of girls to grow up to be close friends.  And wear cute matching clothes when they're little.) So we shall see what the Lord's blessed us with in a few weeks at our next ultrasound.

Easter this year has come at a time when I've been especially aware of God working in our family.  It seems that every few days A makes some "revelation" from the backseat of the car or her stroller or crib or something, and I am amazed that He is already using people like nursery workers and Sunday school teachers to reveal Himself to her.  Here's what I mean: we passed a church with a cross in the window on our walk the other day.  She pointed to it and said "Jesus."  I agreed that it had to do with Jesus, and told her it was called a cross.  She proceeded to tell me "Jesus loves you."  Yup.

The next day we were in the car and I was singing "He's got the whole world in His hands."  (We have so many relatives that this song takes on about 15 verses, so it took a while.)  When I was finished, A said "wide world in hands. Addie loved Jesus."  Does that mean she loves Him because He has the whole world in His hands?  Maybe.  There's no way she get's all of this from Brad and I.  I guess it's all about that "village".

So this Easter Sunday I was especially moved.  Not inspired, but reminded and renewed, and possibly in need of re-defining my definition of "faith" with regards to how I will teach my kids.  The words of one song we sang in worship this morning comes to mind.  I'm sure you've heard it, but I'll repeat it here...

In Christ alone my home is found
He is my light, my strength, my song
This Cornerstone, this solid ground
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm

What heights of love, what depths of peace
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease
My Comforter, my All in All
Here in the love of Christ I stand

In Christ alone, who took on flesh
Fullness of God in helpless Babe
This gift of love and righteousness
Scorned by the ones He came to save

Til on that cross as Jesus died
The wrath of God was satisfied
For every sin on Him was laid
Here in the death of Christ I live

There in the ground His body lay
Light of the world by darkness slain
Then bursting forth in glorious Day
Up from the grave He rose again

And as He stands in victory
Sin's curse has lost its grip on me
For I am His and He is mine
Bought with the precious blood of Christ

No guilt in life, no fear in death
This is the power of Christ in me
From life's first cry to final breath
Jesus commands my destiny

No power of hell, no scheme of man
Could ever pluck me from His hand
Til He returns or calls me home
Here in the power of Christ I stand.