The Vase

I have barely been out of school a decade and I already see a difference in intensity to what you guys are facing compared to what I did.

In regards to sex, “everybody’s doing it” isn’t just a phrase, it seems to be your reality.

While I’ve experienced first hand the beauty of God’s plan for sex, my heart breaks because I have watched how premarital sex hurts people.

I’m not talking about losing your salvation, or being separated from God, or anything like that. No, His love is so great it covers anything you do.

But I am talking about the hurts that are going to have to heal.

Hurts that could be avoided by waiting for the one God has for you.

I’m not being cliché. I have sat with many wives who have poured out their hearts as to the hurt that their premarital sex has had on their marriage, even if they end up marrying the guy.

I have sat with teens who feel trapped in a web of sex that they want out of, but feel like they’ve messed up too much to stop.

I have heard stories of women who gave their whole self to a guy, trying to secure his love, only to be left pregnant and alone.

Tonight God gave me a picture of a beautiful vase. A gorgeous, ornate, exquisite, extremely expensive vase. He has his arms outstretched holding it.

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{Qianlong vase valued at over $80 million US}

Then someone else reached out and took that gift and threw it on the ground and it shattered everywhere.

When they tried to pick it up the beautiful, valuable, incredible pottery cut them deeply. There was a wound that was going to take a while to heal.

This is what I felt the Lord say to me!

“I am holding out this beautiful gift to you, but when you use it at a time that it’s not meant to be used, it becomes broken and dangerous. It will cut you deeply. That thing that you couldn’t wait to get your hands on will leave you bleeding and suffering.

But when you wait and use it the way I intended it, that beautiful gift becomes a display of my great love for you.”

The good news is that the Almighty, All Powerful God of the Universe can come in and pick up the pieces for you, binding up your wounds.

Psalms 147:3 says

He heals the brokenhearted and bandages their wounds.

Please hear this, if you have had sex outside of marriage there is hope. You can be healed of the pain, you can experience freedom. You are not ruined and there is always forgiveness.

But this is my heart tonight, for my friends who are on the fence about this topic: Is the short-term benefit worth the long-term risk?

I beg you, with tears, to ask the Holy Spirit what he has to say about this and let him show you his heart for intimacy.

Don’t sell yourself short or think that you aren’t worth waiting for, or believe a lie that you have to give everything away in order to be loved.

It’s simply not true.

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Check out Ann’s blog post called:
Dear Kids: Why Wait till Marriage – What no one tells you & I wish someone had told me.

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Sunday Meltdown

Sundays are hard. I don’t know what it is about the after church crash for our family that always turns our house squirrelly.

We have a bit of a plan for Sunday afternoons and evenings to help ease the chaos, but it always seems to spiral out of control from over tired, socially drained kids.

My ears are still ringing. I didn’t know a child could scream as loud as I heard Caleb scream tonight. Over a bath toy. Or something. I couldn’t quite understand between the hitting, punching, yelling and crying.

I’m sure our neighbours thought he fell and broke his leg, or worse.

My two and half years old sweetheart dressed like an adorable little Minnie Mouse called me a “stupid mom” today.

She’s not a bad girl, only copying what she’s heard.

Yes, I admit it. Four and a half years into parenting and I still say the word stupid.

These are the days where it can be easy to believe the lie that I am a bad mom.

A friend once told me to look at myself through the lens of how I’m doing on a good day, when I’ve had sleep and when I’m feeling on top of my game.

That has stuck with me because it helps me to remember that I DO love my children deeply, I am good at listening to them, at caring for them, at speaking good words of life over them, at teaching them, at praying for them and at holding them tightly when they feel overwhelmed.

In the midst of making supper tonight I stopped at my cupboard where I had a verse written down from a friend. It said:

The Lord is my strength and shield.
    I trust him with all my heart.
He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy.
    I burst out in songs of thanksgiving.

Psalm 28:7

I hadn’t noticed those three precious words in the middle: He helps me.

Those words are like the deepest exhale for the soul.

He helps me. 

I’m not walking this journey alone. He helps me. With him, I can do it.

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How is my baby 1 on Wednesday?!

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Love her face here! She is so funny!

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This boy. No one sends me for an emotional roller coaster like him. The firstborn of two firstborns. So strong, so determined!

Tiny Princess

I always imagined having all boys. I think it was from reading Little Women as a child and remembering that the heroine of the story, Jo, was one of five sisters and then had all boys. It seemed just how it was meant to be.

The day the ultrasound tech told us that our second child was a girl, was shocking. Even when I gave birth to her I asked the doctor “is it really a girl!?”

It wasn’t until I was pregnant with her that I realized I was scared to have a daughter. I knew every struggle I had walked through, every discontent with myself, every hurt from a boy in the past, and I felt scared to bring her into the world.

Our first year with her was rough. She cried and screamed a lot. I wondered often if this was just what life was like with a girl.

As time went on she stayed a highly sensitive, over emotional child through age one until her second birthday.

Then this summer things started to change. It was like Amayah had been this closed up flower. Delicate, precious and we knew she was beautiful, but suddenly she started to bloom.

We discovered she is hilarious! She had funny comments to make about life and her brothers.

We found out she is a big time daddy’s girl. We always knew that but once she could verbalize “no mommy, I don’t want you, I just want daddy”, there was no doubt in our minds.

We saw that her seemingly over emotional self was extremely compassionate and caring.

Watching her turn from a baby into a little girl has evoked something in my that I hadn’t expected.

Of course I want my daughter to know she is loved, beautiful, worth respect and unstoppable. 

I had no idea this would make me second guess everything that I do, realizing she is watching me every moment.

So often she gets into my make up, smears it all over her face, put on my jewelry over top her pajamas and comes out with this all important question: am I pretty mommy?

Then like a little girl, I see myself do that with my husband, perhaps with a more carefully phrased question so I don’t seem quite so insecure.

I don’t believe that valuing your appearance was wrong, the Proverbs 31 woman was said to be dressed well and looked good. However, what’s cautioned me is my daughter mimicking me and receiving the wrong message about her value and worth.

Her questions have taken me to a place of asking my heavenly Father some of these same questions. I love when he answers the deep questions in my heart.

I don’t want to mindlessly go along with culture and see her follow suit. If I spend time getting ready, I want her to know why, and for it to not be degrading reason.

I want her to see beauty and excellence balanced with grace and humility. And more than anything an imperfect mom who has been changed by Jesus.

So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.

Romans 12:1-2 (MSG)

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She’s so fun!

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More than anyone else, she LOVES when daddy paints her nails!

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