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Friday, October 30, 2009

my story, His story, HISTORY

i've been really remiss at updating my blog. it's been an overwhelming couple of weeks. between business stuff, surgery for my son, a teen suicide, MORE water in our basement, and preparing for fall camp with our youth group. it just doesn't seem right to take time out to write.
which i love.
not the not writing. . .
the writing. i love to write. [okay, ramble]
i have so much floating around my brain that it's almost paralyzing trying to think of letting it out!
so i have a few minutes (literally) before i leave for fall camp, and knowing that you, my faithful readers (i couldn't believe how many of you compassionately commented on the suicide post. . . thank you!) would stand in the gap for me this weekend.
i have been asked, along with five other of our youth leaders, to be a speaker this weekend at our camp.
i could stop there. that is flattering, humbling, heart-palpitatingly, panic attactingly crazy. i am unworthy to share, but also realize that i am not the only broken vessel the Lord has chosen to fill, and to declare otherwise or remain silent is not possible.
would you join me in praying for our church's youth? that they would receive these stories of brokenness and redemption and see God's amazing glory? that our stories would illuminate His story, and that we would have a part in making HISTORY in the eternal lives of our youth? that the enemy's tricks and lies would be foiled this weekend? that His name would be held up and worshipped in spirit and in truth?

that i wouldn't choke on my own spit while i'm speaking?

i hear the liar's whispers. he woke me up at 3:15 this morning.

you're too disjointed. you're not focused. you don't have anything worthy to share. you have too much to share. you're such a screw up that who could even figure out what you're trying to say?

thank goodness i don't really listen to him.

it's not my story, it's HIS story. and i'll tell this story and make HIS story, their story.

pray for me, my fellow leaders, the students, our time, our worship, the weather. . . anything that comes to mind.

thank you from the bottom of my heart!

Monday, October 26, 2009

new day; a day of thanksgiving

i remember last friday, i was very much having a difficult time with the whole idea of being thankful in all circumstances.
thankful in the face of a young man's suicide. . .
and then i remembered Job. how he lost everything. his family, his fortune, his shelter. and as he sat at the curb, scraping his boils (i mean could the guy not get a break??) he falls to the ground in worship, "Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked shall I return; the Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord."
he worshipped.
and he blessed the name of the Lord.
being thankful doesn't always mean rattling off a list of blessings.
sometimes it just means being thankful that God said he would never leave or forsake us.
wow, i am certainly thankful that He is my rock.
and He is theirs. the suicide family knows Jesus (as did the young man) and is relying on his great provision of strength as i write this.
Take the old prophets as your mentors. They put up with anything, went through everything, and never once quit, all the time honoring God. What a gift life is to those who stay the course! You've heard, of course, of Job's staying power, and you know how God brought it all together for him at the end. That's because God cares, cares right down to the last detail. (james 5:10-11, the message) patient respect and trust in God even in the midst of our sufferings.
wait on the Lord; be of good courage and He shall strengthen your heart. wait i say, on the Lord. (Ps 27:14)
not exactly my strong suit.
i'll say too, that after going to this young man's funeral and hearing about all he has done in his 21 years that honors Christ, how he thought of others first and had a kind word for everyone. . . it made me think that if this kid could succumb to suicide, perhaps we're all vulnerable.
it caused me to remind my children that suffering requires being able to stand on that bedrock of Christ. and to be able to recognize the voice of the deceiver. be vigilent. the enemy is looking for a foothold. recognize his lies. and cloak yourself with the one who is victorious.
love well. and stay close to Him who loves you most.
and to my friends, those of you who offered up prayers and words of encouragement. . .
how incredibly blessed i am to have sweet, loving friends who love and encourage well. what a wellspring of generousity that bubbled up from my last post. you all are treasures and i am incredibly thankful for the blessings you have brought to my life. thank you, Jesus for my i-friends. treasures, i tell you!

Friday, October 23, 2009

heavy heart

it's been a while since i posted. or visited. i've been a little M.I.A. some really awesome things going on, then some not-so-awesome.
i was really hoping to come back and post some scrumdilliumptious photos of our new store that opened up on monday (i will do that, i promise) and i had a really promising meeting for the new business that is percolating with my partners. the rain has (somewhat) stopped, i think i lost 2 pounds, and i won a ridiculously amazing giveaway at mckmama. i mean could life get any better?
but then the unthinkable.
i got word that a friend found her son this week. hanging in his bedroom.
my little mind is reeling trying to think how tragic it would be to have that little video replaying in my mind for the rest of my life.
and it makes me want to gather my little chicks close to me and remind them how much i love them and that no matter what the problem is that we can work together and get through it.
both of my offspring are enmeshed in their first relationships. ever. and i hope that they won't have to have the kind of heartache my friend's son must have experienced to take his own life.
he knew Jesus (thank you, Lord), and he had a great relationship with his parents. but he let the enemy's whispers drown out rational thought.
a permanent solution to a temporary problem.
oh how this mother's heart grieves with my friend and her husband.
how this mother's heart aches for the young people affected. the brothers. the girlfriend who had just broken up with him. her friends. his friends. her parents. grandparents. the fallout from suicide is like a nuclear blast. the radiation stays in the soil. stays. in. the. soil.
this is where i have to really dig deep. and try to wrap my small mind around what to do.

give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” 1 Thessalonians 5:18

give thanks.
in all circumstances.
this is God's will.

He is already at work in this situation. thank you, Jesus.
the young man was a believer. thank you Jesus.
the parents are strong believers and have a vast network of believers supporting them. thank you Jesus!!
my children are healthy and loved. thank you thank you Jesus.
and the students left standing are noticing Him. thank you, Jesus.

give thanks.
in all circumstances.
this is God's will.

not that children commit suicide.
but that He is our comfort. our rock. our redeemer. our shelter in the storm.
that we recognize His provisions. that we still trust Him.

i have to ponder this in my very heavy heart.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

raining and growing.

this is normally a dry month where i come from, so all this rain is pretty unexpected. it's pouring. it's rained pretty much most of this month.
i was sharing about rain with a little girl who should be out jumping in puddles, but is fighting for her life instead. that ugly beast. cancer.
as much as i like to grumble about the rain, i need to remember what a blessing it is. it's necessary for growth. and after several days of rain, isn't it gloriously wonderful to see the sun? and without rain, would we ever witness a rainbow?
God is as much in the rain as he is in the sun. in fact, i would argue, even moreso. because we take sunshine for granted. but it's in the rain where we cling to our savior.
how hard to process rain in a young child's life. it doesn't seem right. but i know God has a plan. and he's going to use the rain to grow this family in ways unimaginable.
as much as i want every day to be cloud-free and blazing sun, i would become parched and withered.
washing clean.
living water.
fill me up.
cling, regan. we are praying for you.

Monday, October 12, 2009

nope, that couldn't be me!

it's hit or miss around here as far as hooking up with my favorite blogger, mckmama, and deciding whether or not i have any viable fodder for her not me monday blog carnival. i've got some stuff that i would never admit to doing, as i'm sure you don't as well… you can head over there and link up with all the others avoiding true confessions…
i would never take a work break only to write a blog post. i mean if my boss could see me now, he would more than likely have a problem with that. even though i sleep with my boss on a very regular basis (relax, i work for the hubster), it gets me nowhere. in fact, it probably gets me more accountability than i'm really interested in. but i digress…
the kiddies were in town this weekend for fall break. i would never count the minutes until bama girl arrived. that would be weird, and for a woman buried under a mountain of work, a rather lame use of my time! i didn't drop everything when she arrived and didn't spend more time than i should have looking at all her new tshirts from her sorority and patiently wait for her stories. it seems like long talks with her have been more rare in the last year, so i didn't just drop everything like a hot potato to just be with her.
we also didn't make plans for a family dinner for 9:30 on friday nite. i mean who eats that late? and who has to make a date with their own children two weeks in advance?? and our plans weren't ambushed at all by the six guests that arrived, slightly rain-soaked from the high school football game that was cancelled because of lightning, and ended up staying for dinner. we didn't rush to the freezer to grab more stuff to grill and didn't throw the rest of the bag of potaotes in the oven… that would mean the $200 i spent on groceries (for three people in our household) was not ridiculous. the stocking up didn't turn out to be a pretty wise investment at all and we avoided a quick trip to the krogers!
we didn't end up laughing and talking and enjoying the fellowship of our kids' friends in the least and weren't the least bit sorry that our quiet evening with the family ended up a rowdy night of remember whens and unbridled laughter. i didn't catch the hubster stealing a wink to me to say how much he had missed these important beings in our lives, and i didn't tear up once!! and i didn't dab my napkin at my eyes instead of the corner of my mouth one time…
i did not grumble in the least when my kids made me put my camera away. and they did not give me the "we don't want to be the next photo on your blog." sigh. so busted.
we didn't have a great weekend in the rain with our kids.
and it didn't make me at all want to start an advent calendar for thanksgiving, the next time we'll all be together again.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

disappearing act

i haven't disappeared. i'm just snowed under by work with our new store opening up in a week. i must focus and support the family. . . for such a time as this. on a crazy schedule right now, but soon it will all be under control.
the world continues to rotate without my blogging, much to my narcissistic dismay.
i miss you, friends, but will be back soon.
until then, i send you greetings from the bottom of a huge pile of work!

Saturday, October 3, 2009


noise. there's so much of it. and distractions are something i struggle with. i'm contemplating silence, and i invite you to as well.
stay tuned. . .