Friday, February 24, 2012

Eucharisteo Moment: toothless

Eucharisteo - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember as thanks to the Lord.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

spring comes early

I live in the desert, it can be hot here, it can get downright freezing here, it is dry here. And there are times and seasons when our spirituality can feel the same way, such a fluctuation of "temperatures", such a "dryness" of soul. This week has been hard, and when I say hard, it is like the ground on a day in August in the desert: when the land is parched and cracked and there seems no hope, no life, no rain, just dust. But then the Creator comes and with one touch of His hand, he makes all the hurting and fear and worry go away. Just one touch! An incredible wonder has happened in a life of one I hold dear. A repentance, a miracle, a growing....a SPRING! God has taken all the pain and turned it into the most beautiful springtime boquet. He has made all things new, placed His hand on a dead branch and made it burst into blossom. He has turned my mourning into laughter. I am Lucy and I was in a ship in an island of fog and I can't see, and I've screamed "Aslan, Aslan, if ever you loved us at all, send us help now". And I hear his voice, like an albatross over head, in a soft, gentle, "delicious" voice, in the middle of the dark say to me "Courage, dear heart". And in those few moments, the darkness is.......gone! I am praising God right now, for this early Spring, may it ever flourish and grow. After all, we were all once dead in our trespasses and sins and His RESURRECTING LIFE has made us alive!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Lent and the forgiveness of sins

This year we are really trying to reflect on Lent. What does it mean? Why do we observe it? Here is an excellent post from one of my favorite people on Lent. And here is another one of her posts on Forgiveness, something which is raw and real to my heart right now. Oh the hurting, oh the reflection on my own sin, the thankfulness for God's ultimate forgiveness and how I MUST do the same. He blots out our sins, He remembers them no longer. I am empty, I am broken, I write the names in dust, I wipe them away and I forgive and sometimes I keep writing the same name and wiping it away. Forgiveness is a cycle, it needs to happen constantly, not just once: for we are fallen humans in need of a Savior. Jesus does it perfectly, once, and IT IS FINISHED. I am so thankful, and I am observing lent this season.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

winding down, catching up, and breathing...

God gives us what we can handle at certain times in our lives and He gives us the grace to get through. For what seems like over a month of a teething, fussy, sleepless baby season, the molar finally broke through only to give way to a horrible diaper rash and the constant diapering needs that go with that. We've been busy, busy, busy full of people and places and ministering, but we are finding ourselves exhausted. And at the brink of all that, I had a family disaster take place that has rocked me to my core, made me cry and cry so much, that I am all cried out now, I am mentally and emotionally and spiritually exhausted. It's hard when a brother decides to try and throw everything God has given him away and revel in his own trash instead. It is frustrating to hear and see the pain on his family's voice and hear my own parents heartbroken and weary voices. And when his repentence comes you find your doubts but begging God that this whole thing be final and resolved and be different this time. Oh life can get to it's hardest point and when you think you're about to break, the Lord gives a brief reprieve and low and behold, the baby is sleeping through the night again. I find comfort in my husband's arms and his understanding, in the laughter of my children as we sit around the dinner table telling cheesy jokes. As my husband reads to our family the book of Job (which we've been going through for some time oddly enough) and having the words wash over me, strengthen me and I feel the Lord's arms around me hugging me tightly and soothing my soul and I finally take a deep breath...

In the midst of this, I also find comfort in the kitchen. I know, different things for different people. For me, I just need to bake up a storm or cook up a storm or something. Just to be doing, and not thinking over and over again and getting all caught up in my thoughts and how they can spiral.
made a year's worth of jam: blackberry, strawberry, and blueberry strawberry and some ginger mango granola.

Cooking tomato sauce from fresh tomatoes for two days and then canning them.

 Making sun-dried grape tomatoes
 Large quantities of zuchini muffins to freeze and have on hand for any occasion...
Stewing all the heirloom tomatoes I got at the market. I love them fresh, but there were just too many to be able to enjoy all at once.

And here I am at 21 weeks pregnant, so excited she's a girl, that I'm over half way there.