Monday, February 25, 2013

Always Joy [Part One]

Be joyful always;
pray continually;
give thanks in all circumstances,
for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.

                                       -1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Some moments cause joy and prayer and thanksgiving to gush from my heart.

Like on Friday afternoon when we went on a family hike in Chino Hills State Park.

Beauty everywhere! The blueness of the sky. The crispness of the air. The warmth of the sun when its rays reached down and kissed cool cheeks. Greens of every hue proclaiming their grandeur in lowly moss growing along the earthen path.

And of course the blessing of sharing it with my amazing little boys and the wonderful man I call Husband and they call Daddy.

The best part of the day was when we wandered off the trail to a secluded knoll flooded with tall grass and long sticks. The perfect spot for exploring and sword fights and snacks.

As Chris snapped this priceless picture of our three sons, a digital record of another family adventure, I paused to soak it all in. The chorus of crickets chirping their nature praise. Every blade of grass dancing together to the song of the breeze. The light upon three angel faces, little miracles of God's workmanship knitted together from me and Chris, yet made in His likeness. Amazing.

And as I savored it all, the Spirit brought Paul's words to mind and my heart said,  

"Yes! I AM joyful! Thank you God for this very moment! I praise you because not only are your gifts good but YOU are good. Good ALL the time, Lord!"

It was such a sweet moment. And I was so thankful for it.

*     *     *

But not every moment in mothering is so picture perfect. And my response is not always joy and prayer and thanks. More on that soon...

Friday, February 8, 2013

A Golden Moment

Earlier this week I had one of those golden moments.

When you slow down long enough to see a life full of beauty and love. 

When sweetness and simplicity outshine stress and complexity.

I had just put Jude down for his late afternoon nap. Dinner was simmering on the stove and I went back outside to be with Noah and Elias...

As I step onto the back porch I hear happy noises of little boys playing. Playing nicely. Together. No fighting over who gets what shovel or truck, no pushing a brother or testing a parental boundary. Just digging happily side by side, filling blue buckets with boyhood treasures. Dinosaur bones and diamond rocks. Earth worms and rollie pollies.

Sigh. They love each other and I love them. My heart is full.

I breath in the crisp air of Southern California "cold", tuck my hands into my pockets, and snuggle my feet deeper into my worn Ugg boots. I look up and behold a brilliant orange globe peeking through the neighbor's trees, glowing low on the horizon. God's fingerprints of love and beauty. 

And in that moment, I felt so blessed. Not only because it was a minute of  peace and serenity in a day, week, month, years strung together by the challenge and chaos of raising three little boys, but blessed because God allowed me to see it, to savor the gift of that moment.