Summer Reflections

Someone told me yesterday that today, we are too busy to make time for reflection. We don’t pause, we don’t stop, we just go-go-go-go-go to our own determent. I’ve definitely seen that to be true in our life this summer; it’s been a crazy one with home buying and selling, moving, our favorite friends, grandparent visits, a little too much of the flu, a whole lot of painting, and even more unpacking, lazy days with our closest friends, another amazing Beth Moore study under the belt (Entrusted) with some wonderful ladies, a few weddings photographed by the side of some talented women I’ve really enjoyed getting to know, and not enough writing (oh, how I’ve missed you #threfreshlens)!
Our family didn’t get to the Zoo enough (unless it’s once a week, it’s never enough!) the lake enough, and we didn’t go on nearly enough walks. Things have been so busy! But, today, I’m keeping my eyes forward on all that’s to come and all that we will do – unknown and unknown – for I know He works it all for our good and I can’t wait to see what that good looks like for my family. 
This fall we’re going to be taking a lot more walks in our new neighborhood, and having a lot more family down time (especially with our new to town sister in town!) Rest and reflection are what I’m hoping for in the upcoming season. And, when I do look back I’m going to remember this summer as being sweet — overflowing with hot, lazy, days. And right now, I’m thankful that this summer is not quite done!
Will you make time to stop on reflect on this season? What are you hoping to do in the next one?

A Mother’s Imperfect Habits and Messy Love

I recently submitted a free write to the Her View From Home blog, all about imperfect mothering and messy love. Take a look here and copied.

Originally posted on the Her View From Home blog!

I am not habitual. I am not routine. I am not particularly disciplined, though I’d very much like to be.


I am spontaneous. I am adventurous. I am random. I am sometimes brave, and always passionate.

The world tells me to be a good mom I need to set my alarm at 5 or 6 am every morning to achieve a certain checklist before my kids are awake. That happens some days – not every day.

There are weeks I have a glass of wine – or two – before bed while my husband is at work and I’m in complete survival mode. My alarm clock is usually my 10-month-old the following morning. There are weeks I go to bed at 7:45 pm right after my kids doze off, and I’m up at 5 am for a spin class at the local YMCA. The point is, it’s not ever the same.

I have a planner. I have a few actually – one for work, one for our family, etc. I’m obsessed with planning, scheduling, and laying out our life perfectly – but the reality is life doesn’t follow my perfectly planned playbook, does it?

When did being a good mom start to mean sticking to the family planner and daily routine? Does it mean the same alarm clock beep every morning, the coffee pot set and scheduled the night before, and the same bedtime every night? Because if that’s being a good mom, I can’t do that.

The thing is, God didn’t pick a creature of habit to mother my children… he actually picked me.

He picked me.

He picked the one who is ADHD about her workout routine, diet, and sleep patterns. One week I’m an avid runner, the next I can’t be bothered to put down the latest Kiera Cass, Suzanne Collins, or Beth Moore, to head to the gym. One week I’m eating strictly paleo (or gluten free) the next week all that’s on the menu is coffee and chocolate. One week, I’m spending 5 hours a week at the public library with my growing readers, the next I’m deciding it’s educational for them to watch the Hallmark channel all day long in honor of the Christmas season. You get the picture, I think.

My kids might not learn about alarm clock patterns from me. But, they might learn to book a flight with two days’ notice to see a dear friend. From me, they probably won’t learn about nutrition (thank gosh they have their dad for that), but they’ll learn to be 10 minutes early, rather than one minute late, to everything. They might be confused about my discipline methods, always changing, and never consistent (probably the one thing they should be), but I’m hoping that they will learn I love them immensely. They’ll learn I tried everything in the book(s) to be the best mom to them, to show them how head over heels crazy I am about them. Always wanting their life to be exciting, adventurous, meaningful, and never boring or predictable. I didn’t ever aspire to be a good mom to them, really, anyone could do that. I wanted to be a great one.

Oaks of Glory

She woke up feeling broken. She had been told she was broken too many times, and one morning something snapped and she couldn’t shed the weight of it anymore.

She became quiet and withdrawn. She stopped trusting. She stopped trying. She carried it with her, the burden of being questioned, doubted, rejected and ultimately abandoned.

She longed to be accepted, understood, and loved wholly and unconditionally.

And it hurt. She hurt. Every second of every day when she couldn’t spend enough of her energy on distractions, the pain would find her. She couldn’t escape.

Then the truth found her.  The darkness has not overcome the lightJohn 1:4-5. Why was she living as if the darkness had won?

Because she was questioned, she also had questioned. She had questioned His love for her, His care for her, His provision. Because those that rejected her and tore her down didn’t love her well, she forgot that He does. He loves well.

She saw that God was standing by her side in the brokenness, longing to heal her, if she would simply accept his healing affection. He would build her up. He would lay a new foundation of unrestrained, undeserved, break-the-gates-open-wide kind of love for her.

She saw that this love – His perfect love – could fill the cracks where things have been shattered, stolen, beaten, and broken.

God wanted to use her that way, with old cracks that show through the surface, with new ones that have yet to be healed. In Him, she is worthy to be used even while broken, rejected, misunderstood and mislabeled.

Not every broken piece has been found and put back into place. She knows that he will finish his work of fixing, healing, and loving until complete wholeness is restored.

To she who mourns He will give: beauty where there were only ashes; pure joy in place of deep sadness; uplifting praise instead of heaviness. For God has planted her like a strong and graceful oak for His glory. | Isaiah 61:3 paraphrased.