23 October 2008

This is Not a Monkey

We have a favorite book from Grams that we like to read this time of year called, "This is Not a Pumpkin." Every page has a picture of what looks to be a pumpkin, but the words tell us that in fact even though it looks like a pumpkin in many ways, it is NOT a pumpkin. Finally at the end, we discover it is not a pumpkin, but a jack o' lantern!

It's a little like that at our house these days. What looks to be an inflatable monkey is not that. It is a Guitar! Asher has always loved music and lately is hugely obsessed with guitars. We have found him "strumming" everything from stuffed animals to books.
His love of guitars has become so strong that it has replaced a former strong opinion that mommy should not sing along to songs on the radio. Now I am delighted to hear requests saying "Mommy, sing." Not because I suddenly have a beautiful singing voice, but because my son can now accompany me on his "guitar."

Any flies in our Jeep yesterday were probably rolling on the floor with laughter as Asher, with his bright yellow hard hat on asked mommy to sing in the front seat while he sat in his carseat strumming his monkey guitar. .
(Judging from the looks given by fellow motorists, I'm thinking we might want a little more practice before we take our show on the road.)

20 October 2008

Royal Visitors

I wish I had known today was going to be such a special day. I would have gotten out the fine china, ironed linen napkins, and polished the silver (if I had any of those things!), but I didn't have advanced information. Maybe Asher didn't know either, but I am proud of his hospitality as he gathered enough chairs for the most distinguished of guests.

Our guests arrived, and each took a seat. The queen in her seat, the bishop in another, the knight in yet another. If only I had known about this important day in advance, I would have found more chairs so all of the pawns and less important guests didn't have to gather on Asher's booster seat.

You might wonder what the grand occasion was. Why did such royalty decide to visit our house today?

It appears that there was a mighty big checkers game that took place in our very own living room and all the chess pieces wanted to be here to watch!

All the chess pieces gathered around to watch the big game. Unfortunately, I had planned to get new tires on the Jeep today, so we weren't able to stay and root on the best team. This must be a big match-off because our royal guests are still here and the checker game is still in progress.

16 October 2008

What I Expect

When I plug in my hairdryer, I expect it to blow hot air.

When I click send on the button in Outlook, I expect the email to be delivered to my friend.

When I press mute on my remote control, I expect the tv sound to stop.

When I attempt to work for God, I expect Him to use that effort in a way I've already figured out.

Technology has trained me, or maybe spoiled me, to expect life to go as I want. When something stops working around the house I am the first to freak out, panic, and believe that my life is put on hold until its fixed. That's just if the vacuum starts to make a funny noise. It doesn't take a lot to go wrong for me to get anxious and I often stay uptight until the potentially broken item is back to working as it should. After all, things should just work, right?

Maybe in a pre-fallen world life would go like that, just as we expect at the time that we think is best. But as I have learned again and again over the past year, this world is broken. Not only do computers freeze and batteries run out, but non-technological things break too. People get sick when they shouldn't, babies die, and bosses change their minds about plans that we count on.

We take a chance for God and those efforts can sometimes seem failed.

Through studying Moses' life I've recently seen how he had such a experience with his attempts to work for God without getting the results he expected. He heard from a burning bush to do something. He obeyed that bush, and life got worse! This was not what was supposed to happen so Moses ran back to God in a panic, saying that God had not fulfilled His promise of rescue at all! The deliverance didn't happen as Moses thought it should and He lost sight of God's character, that He is I AM who needs no other name.

God has not responded as I expected this year. Some things I've attempted for Him have not worked out as I think they should. When my plans are so logical, I wonder why they don't happen as I would like.

I've come to terms with knowing that technology - which is supposed to be robotic and happen the same way every time - does not always work like I want. As much as I don't like it, I've come to a place of accepting this.

But yet I still haven't fully come to peace with this in the spiritual sense. I'm still fighting to understand that God, who is the infinite opposite of robotic, does not work life out as I expect. I have learned to accept technological problems in stride, but continue to have such trouble when God does not act as I expect, and I wonder why.

07 October 2008

Writing My Article

Doesn't every parent want their kids to love what they love?

I love writing, and lately have been finding more outlets for this long-held interest. It has become more apparent to me that my writing interest is no longer just bottled up and saved for my private journal entries.

Families reveal a lot about what happens within the home and children reflect back what they are hearing. So when Asher frequently tells me, "I need write my article," I take that as a sign that my family is noticing the time I am increasingly putting towards writing

After Asher makes known his need for space to write, he dutifully takes a pen and sits to scribble his creativity onto a piece of paper. I love it! I am praying this means he will really love writing as much as I do.

My newest writing outlet is a weekly Tuesday Tips online column for The Pantagraph, our local newspaper. These are published as a Hearts at Home resource and you can read the first one here. Although they are just short little clips, I'm excited to have this opportunity, but even more excited that these are contributing to my budding article writer.

06 October 2008

Praying for Turtle

When we say bedtime prayers with Asher, we have habitually asked him who he wants to pray for. The usual winners are mommy, daddy, Asher, and often Uncle Sam. We are of course eager to pray for our immediate family and since my brother often scares us with his dare-devil antics, we know he needs many extra prayers as well.

But recently, Asher has requested prayers for turtle, bird, and Albert the alligator. These are his best friends and he takes such wonderful care of them, that I understand his desire for all to go with for them. But Walter and I have found ourselves at a loss of how to pray for stuffed animals.

I have tried,

Dear God, please keep turtle clean and germ-free, please keep all of his stuffing inside, don't allow either of his eyes to come off, and protect him from accidentally getting kicked out of bed tonight. Amen.

But I feel a little funny praying for a non-living object no matter how precious it is to Asher.

Rather than long prayers for the beloved animal of the night, we are instead trying to redirect Asher's request toward prayers for friends and that he will always be surrounded by companions that he loves!