Friday, June 17, 2011

Parenting 201

We have entered a new realm of parenting - discipline. Eek. Elliot is now crawling all over the place, pulling up, reaching for everything, & even exhibiting a bit of the "human sin nature." Oh boy. Now, if you don't think disciplining an 8 month old is appropriate, stop reading now. Josh & I believe that babies are smarter than they seem, & we want to teach him what is okay & what is not. We believe he has reached the stage where it is time to create boundaries. The problem is, how do I decide what those boundaries are?

You see, I am the type of person that lines up the kitchen table with the floor tiles. It's got to be straight. So, when my baby heads for my photo albums, do I get over it & force myself to think photos warped by drool is adorable? Or do I attempt to keep him away from everything that is not sold in the baby aisle of Target? You see my quandary.

It's hard to think about disciplining him. Who wants their child to get upset? I can see how parents end up letting their kids have or do whatever they want. But I also see what kind of kid that produces, & I don't want one of those!

God is SO teaching me right now to look to Him in EVERY moment. Stop - get my heart in the right place - pray & ask for wisdom/patience/peace - & let Him do it. Be obedient. What a process. It seems He is bound & determined to change me. How about that? Well, I might as well go with it. He really does have my best in mind, & Elliot's best. He is good. I really can rest in that!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Living radically

If you haven't read the book "Radical" by David Platt, I recommend you do so. Even more, I recommend you read it with your spouse. Josh & I are both reading it, & are only about halfway through, but it has caused many conversations between us. Reading it is much more impactful than my summary could ever be, so I won't even try. But here are some of the ways we are being challenged.

We have always been pretty frugal people (some may say "cheap"). But now we are considering - okay, when we choose not to spend our money on something, then what do we do with it? Are we frugal so that we can save save save? Or do we realize what eternal purpose that money could serve?

Now, the basis behind ANY question we ask is motive. Saving in itself isn't bad. Buying a house or a car or going out to eat aren't in themselves bad things. But when we save, is it because we are putting our security in our finances? We need a "safety net?" Is it taking away from our trust in the Lord, that He provides for all of our needs? Maybe. When we buy something, is it because the Lord is leading us to do so? Or because we want the new thing, the bigger thing?

We have, until now, thought that we would need to buy a new car soon - a new (used) SUV for me to truck our kids around in. I drive a small car & Josh drives an SUV with almost 150,000 miles on it. But what about me driving Josh's car until it dies? Well, I tell ya, I get much more excited about the thought of a newer car. But why?? I'm not saying we won't eventually buy a car. But we want our hearts to be in the right place. We want to be willing to sacrifice. We desire to live simply. We don't want our money to go toward "earthly trinkets," but "eternal treasures."

When we save money by not buying something, we are now challenged to consider where we might give it. We have always given money to our church & to other organizations. But maybe we should go above & beyond. Do we give out of excess, or are we sacrificing? God already gave us somewhere to give some money, & put it on Josh's heart for us to do so. I gladly submit to a husband who desires to give to something that will have eternal benefit!

I am also being challenged to consider my purpose. God wants to use us to make disciples; to change the world. Yes, being a wife & a mom is a huge calling that the Lord has placed on my life. But I know that's not all He has for me. & I want to be used where He wants to use me.

It may sound huge & lofty, all good & well, or it might sound crazy or legalistic. (Sidenote: One other thing I am trying to do right now is to make sure I'm not making "rules" for myself. As a rule follower, that is so easy for me. But I want there to be reason behind the things that I do.) Read the book! Platt's heart behind every word is that we might do what GOD wants. Die to ourselves that He might live through us. I am excited to see how the Lord is moving in our lives. He has GOOD things for us, & I want to be a part of it!!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Follow the rabbit trail.

So, one day after Elliot started crawling, he started pulling himself up to standing. Whaat? He is getting so big! It's so cute to walk into his room after his nap & he is sitting up in his crib waiting for me. We are going to buy him a convertible car seat this weekend. Unfortunately he is not a big fan of being in his infant seat longer than about 45 minutes, which makes 5 hour drives really, really long. So we're hoping the next step up will be more comfortable for him. Or I may need to invest in sedatives. For him or for me? I guess you'll never know! (Just kidding. Kind of.)

Last night I went to bed at 8:15. It was awesome.

Tomorrow is National Donut Day. Free donuts at Krispy Kreme & Dunkin Donuts. You're welcome.

Speaking of sugar, is there really anything better than a Double Stuf Oreo? Oh, oreo ice cream & oreo dirt pudding & oreo cake balls... good point.

We are excited for the Winnie the Pooh movie coming out soon. Elliot has two Pooh Bear stuffed animals, & a super soft Pooh diaper that says "Small Pieces of Fluff." It's so cute. I told Josh he is the Tigger to my Eeyore.

I love going through closets & drawers & getting rid of things. Throwing away, giving away, selling; doesn't matter. I love simplifying. Josh came home in a simplify mood so we cleared out our bookshelves & he cleaned his closet & some drawers in the bathroom. It's kind of like our house loses weight every time we get rid of things. It's great.

Here are a couple quotes at my desk that I like:
"The circumstances of life, the events, of life, & the people around me in life, do not make me the way I am, but reveal the way I am." Dr. Sam Peeples
"You are never more valuable to God than you were the day you were born." (I don't know who said that one, but it's good for the performance-driven types like me.)

It's 9 pm. Way past my bedtime!!