Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Busy-ness leads to emptiness

So I am having a small taste of what super busy moms experience on a daily basis and boy does it leave a bitter taste in my mouth! I am overwhelmed by just a few things and my children being drug out of the house seemingly every day for final practices for end of year things. I can't imagine living a life like this every day. It creates a gap. It creates a void - a longing! I have experienced the longing for peace and for slow lately. I have seen the communication between Tony and I dwindle down to very little as we are just ships passing in the night. "You take Chip to soccer and I will stay home to cook dinner" as Chip jumps in the car from Praise Kids practice to soccer and then home to eat, shower, and bed. There is no time for family, for talking about our day, for teaching or for guiding as 6-year old boys need. WHEW!!! Boy am I glad that this is only a short season in our life at the end of the year. For those of you who do this daily, I ask: "Why?" What is the point of making your child "well rounded" by participating in all those things outside your home if you do not have the time to pour into them the love of Jesus, the ways of life, the confidence of knowing that stillness and home is not a bad thing? Why are we so worried about our children's college sports future at 6 or 7 years old when we need to be worrying about their spiritual future and the habits we are forming for them to take into their future relationships and marriages and families? I don't want Chip growing up thinking that a marriage isn't meant to be lived together, but separately and on the run all the time. I don't want Chip growing up thinking that to be a 'happy family' requires of him to be always busy, and striving to be part of the 'crowd'. I want him to be confident in himself enough to not always need the roar of a crowd or the cheer of an audience as an accolade to his life. But to know that in his personal relationships with others and in the way he loves his family and treats those closest to him, he will make a lasting impact.

I write all of this as I see the next couple of weeks being chaotic for us and all the while, I am going to intentionally impress upon Chip that this is only for a short while and that "This world is fading away, along with everything that people crave, But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever." 1 John 2:17

Consider this, friends, something to instill in your children. Consider that being still and quiet and together is not a bad thing, but the way God intended it to be. Take a moment this week to watch a movie together, to read to your kids, to have a meal together, and to actually ask about how they are doing! Consider asking what they need from you or even if you can pray for them in a certain way! You might be surprised at what they say to you!

Bless you all!

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Dystonia Advocacy Day 2015

I was honored this year to attend the Dystonia Advocacy Network's Dystonia Advocacy Day yesterday on Capital Hill. I joined 100+ other advocated and proceeded to share my dad's Dystonia story and ask congress to help us in the fight for research funds. What a great day and what beautiful weather we had! I was able to traipse all over Capital Hill with Stephens attached and made a huge impact on congress. We were able to celebrate the passing of the SGR as well as thank them for their continued efforts with the DOD acceptance as well as ask, along with so many other activists to increase the NIH budget to $32 billion. Thanks, again, to the Dystonia Advocacy Network and all the groups associated with the DAN to make this opportunity for myself and other Dystonia advocates possible.

Now, I would like to take this time to remind you all, too, of the group of runners we have running the NY marathon in November. We are in the process of raising $25,000 for the DMRF and need your help. If you would so kindly print the flyer, post it at your work, share it with your friends, and consider donating yourself, we would all so greatly appreciate it. I also know that the more than 300,000 people in North America who suffer with Dystonia would appreciate it, as well! Bless you all and thanks for everything!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

God's grace is new every morning

Yes. Today was the morning that I blew it. Today I woke up on the wrong side of the bed, had lots of expectations about how my day was to go with no regard to anyone else in my family, and I expressed those expectations when things didn't go my way. I expected my husband to do things "just right", my son to be as independent and motivated as a 16 year old at 6 years old, and I expected my 8 month old to not be fussy -AT ALL- because he slept pretty decently.

Yes, this isn't just this morning, but EVERY morning. I am a selfish human being who needs God's grace and mercy each and every moment of each and every day. I constantly need correction and reality. I constantly need love and patience. I constantly need a re-do. I try each day to be a little better and most days, I succeed at being a little better than the day before, but other days I totally blow it and seem to go back to where I was 5 years ago.

Today, I cling to the plea and the promise found in Lamentations. Lamentations 3:22-24 says, "Because of the Lord's great love, we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, 'The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.' "

How beautiful is God's love and grace! We are not consumed by our evil and by our sin because his COMPASSIONS never fail! Wow - what a generous God we have! He has compassion when I have none. He has no expectations of others when I have too many. His faithfulness to have new compassion each and every morning, even when I don't deserve it, is what gives me my portion for each day.

Wow - if only I could be a fraction of what God is.... I will have felt like I didn't blow my day totally. This, though, is what keeps bringing me back to the foot of the cross - his forgiveness and grace to allow me to get up and try again, keeps me in His arms and in His hand. If i didn't need him, I wouldn't keep Him in my life. He is my portion - forever. Allow Jesus to be your portion forever, too, and find yourself at the foot of the cross each day when you are not enough because Jesus is enough!