When it comes to grace, people usually go wrong in one of two ways.
We either think that we’re too far gone for it and dismiss it. Or we take it for granted and abuse it. ... While they’re on opposite ends of the spectrum, they’re actually just two different expressions of the same problem: They both view grace as weakness.
The first group lives as if grace is too weak to rescue them. The second group lives as if grace is too weak to transform them.
Both are wrong. Grace isn’t weakness.
Grace is power. It is power to save and to transform. To cover all of our sins and remove them from our lives. To get you off the hook and to get you into the zone of transformation.
Gabe: "Hey Mommy! Do you know what I had dreams about last night?"
Me: "Nope...tell me."
Gabe: "Well I dreamt that I saw Jesus....He was wearing a yellow dress, the sun was shining
really bright, He had a beard and He was very quiet. I sat on His lap and He was smiling at me."
Ellie: "Wow Gabe! I dreamt all night about zombies! I really should stop watching Scooby-Doo!"
Aubrie: "Hey guys! Do you know what I dreamed? Well I dreamed about horses. They were pink and and so sparkly!"
She then breaks out in song:" Oh a pink sparkly horse....a pink sparkly horse. Oh my pink pink pink hoooooooorse. Do you know my pink sparkly horse???"
Gabe: "I bet there's pink sparkly horses in Heaven! But no zombies for sure!"
And there ya have it....just another normal day at the monkey house ;)
This parenting shenanigan is not for the faint of heart.
I never knew such little people could cause so many emotions to come forth.
At one point today, my heart was literally bursting with joy and pride.
I came across Ellie sitting Gabe down in the living room to help him memorize his Bible verse
for Awana tonight. Without me prompting anything.
At another point today, I was frustrated beyond frustrated that certain little monkies couldn't listen
and follow directions the first time given....even though we have talked about this concept 100 million times...every. single .day. of. their. long. legged. lives......
At one point....I was scrubbing dishes like a mad woman and flinging soap suddy bubbles everywhere because a certain 3 year old was throwing a fit because she "DIDN'T WANT TO EAT HER LUNCH EVER AGAIN AND SHE JUST WANTED TO GO WATCH PRINCE CHARMING AND CINDERELLA RIGHT NOW AND IT IS SO NOT FAIR THAT I MAKE HER EAT FOOD EVERY DAY OF HER LIFE!!!!"
At the suppertable, that same little 3 year old thanked me with the sweetest voice and sweetest smile and said, "Thank you so much for making us supper....you are the best Mommy ever."
During school time today, Gabe kept leaning into me so I gave him a kiss on the head which made him start a game of leaning back and forth. Every time he leaned over I would kiss his head. I was rewarded with the cutest little boy giggles and a smile that lights up the sky every time.
There were highs...there were lows....there were mediums. I didn't always keep my cool.
But tonight when that little blonde haired feisty 3 year old, disobeyed the instructions of:
"Stay right by my side while we walk to the van in the dark parking lot because there are a lot of cars picking up kids tonight..." Well this Mama heart just busted.
As that little laughing crazy monkey bolted from my side and raced as fast as she could to get to the van.....time stood still. I screamed her name and for her to stop as a car came towards her from out of nowhere and barely missed her innocent and carefree little self. I don't know how I got to her as fast as I did, but I do know I picked her up so fiercely that I scratched her hand in the process.
And later as she cried and said, "But Mommy....you hurt my hand."
I cried and told God, "But God...they hurt my heart."
And we held the kids close....we talked about the day...and the importance of listening the first time.
We talked about how much we love them and how Daddy and Mommy still make mistakes too.
And as we cried and prayed in a tight little huddle....we thanked God for His angels tonight protecting little Aubrie.
And this Mama....well I'm learning our hearts are so much stronger than we give them credit for.
It swells, it busts, it excites, it angers, it frustrates, it joys, it breaks, it mends.....
and it does it again and again....day after day.
And I'm beginning to realize that faint hearts become beautiful strong hearts... in this journey we call parenting.
LOVE is when sticky, dirty, mischievous, but oh-so-sweet little arms wrap around an exhausted, frustrated, discombobulated Mama.....and that one single act can make the sun shine brighter, the skies become bluer, and that Mama....well... she can conquer the whole world.
“Communion with Christ, the continual conversation of the heart, wherever you are, this is what makes the heart love.”
Love can only be what communion is — a pouring out, a breaking open and a passing around, a sacrifice.
And if love is what makes itself into a roof around a heart to absorbs all the storms, love is the only real dwelling place, and communion with another is all we have to offer and it’s all we have to crawl up under. When I don’t live love, others live homeless. When I don’t love like Christ, I evict souls.
Christ is love embodied and no matter where we are, He and His body are Home.
1-The cloudy dreary cold morning turning into a beautiful sunny fall day.
2- Gloria Jean's Pumpkin Spice Chiller
3- New piano music
4- Ellie informing Aubrie: "I do like pink Aubrie, but officially, my favorite color is purple."
5- Pumpkin cake with vanilla frosting
6- 1 hour phone conversation with one of my favorite aunts....she gives me hope that sassy little blonde haired 3 year old stubborn onery crazy girls will eventually grow up and be beautiful hard working determined amazing kind hearted young ladies :)
7- My mama introducing me to Panera's Cherry Vanilla bagels
8- Bedtime prayers tonight... Gabe's turn: "And thank you God for Pastor Shawn and Lizzie and for undies. Amen."
Ellie: Mommy, Gabe has something he really needs to tell you.
Ellie: Gabe, you should tell her now so you don't get in more trouble later.
Gabe: SILENCE AND BIG EYES.....
Me: Gabe, you got something you need to tell me?
Ellie: Come on, Gabe, you can do this.
Ellie: Gabe, it's ok, you will be fine...just tell her the truth the first time.
Ellie: Gabe, you really need to tell her, it will be ok! Just tell her the truth!
Ellie: (leans over and whispers) Remember, tell the truth the first time so you don't get in more trouble than you already are in!!!!
Gabe: (frantically) ELLIE! YOU JUST TELL HER!!!
Ellie: (very calmly with a very smarty pants voice)
Ok Gabe....Well, Mommy....this is what happened. Gabe thought
it would be really funny to steal my brand new pet puppy Princess. He took her and he hid
her and thought it was a really funny joke. But it wasn't a really funny joke because it made me
really upset. So it wasn't really kind that he did that. And that was a really bad choice that he made.(Big pause.....then she leans over and whispers:)
Gabe? That's how it happened right?
Gabe: SAD EYES.....Yes, that's what happened Ellie.
*Not only did I just listen to monkey #2 illustrate how she was wronged by monkey #1 AND get him to confess all without me saying more than 1 word....but
I'm pretty sure I just saw our little girl put on her own future MamaMonkey big girl pants on.
Dear Lord in Heaven....help us all. #monkeybusiness #neveradullmoment #lovethemtothemoon