The Art of Growing Up

This is a bit of a heads up. That when the facet turns on it might stay on, and do more than drip. Those words and the writing and the overflow of the heart. I wouldn’t blame you if you pressed delete or unsubscribe or walked away from words when they start flowing more frequently. I have begun sometime in 2012 it seems to write daily. Certainly I hope you’re blessed and not the dictionary definition of its opposite. Yesterday I wrote here, of my word for 2013. I am inspired by it. It sort of showed up on my doorstep like a lost dog.


one word button

It just happens. And in some seasons more intensely and profoundly than others. This growing up. This learning.

We did a lot of it in my home yesterday. And we will do more today.

And it’s more pronounced  with one of my little tribe members. But whenever we have spikes in learning and growing, I am stretched and changed too. So it’s more pronounced with ME. And I need growing and stretching and refining. God knows I need to be the one on the potter’s wheel. I am wet clay in His hands.

I need to learn to love it. Because after the trauma and drama and when the dust settles and we all exhale and the learning starts to stick, there is new growth. Buds of change on the way to maturing.

Oh how I long to learn the art of growing up with grace with them.

Some lessons hurt and sting and bite and nearly draw blood. Well that’s how it feels when there are tickets from cars with lights on top that total two hundred and something dollars. It hurts to count. And the government doesn’t like to negotiate pale blue tickets.

It’s easy to scoop them up. It’s hard to let them scoop themselves up. There is tension in the two.

And then the news, so terrible and horrific in its level of violent evil comes on. The local news. And I lock the door at the horror of it all and we huddle around the fire, feeling loved and safe. And the lessons dim a bit and I know the violations and transgressions could be worse.

What part of parenting and growing up was easy? Are we there yet?

And I think of the grace I am extended daily from The One, who made me. But he has gently and lovingly taught me and stretched me. Oh to parent like He does. I made it hard. I fought and dug my heels in and made the easy more difficult.

When the page on the paper day counter turns,  I could panic. And I could begin to count in weeks or even days, the ones remaining under my roof. Eighteen year olds grow and fly and leave. If all goes as planned.

There is much remaining on my momma’s plate to teach.

And in that there is much for me to learn.

I would do well to explore the art of release, the art of patience, and the art of careful attention to detail.

We have a few months until the Spring and I refuse to waste the days I have to learn and grow with him.

He is teaching me the art of growing up. 

And there are days I want to run and hide and hand the reigns to another. But there are days when the joy and growth explode like laughter from the belly of the child. I prefer laughter and joy.

There is beauty in the process. There is joy in the pain. And there is relief in the release. And comfort in the fact that I am never truly alone. Never am I without a helpmate.

I am learning the art of release, leaning into The One that knows and loves me all the days of these tense days of parenting.

The road to adulthood is paved with rocks and rubble at times. The road of adulthood is paved with shards of broken objects at times.

He smoothes the path and goes before and is my rearguard.

There is endless joy and loud alleluia in that.

I hope that today is full of laughter. I hope today is filled with singing.

Growing up. Its an art not a science. And on my knees is a good place to make some art worthy of offering to Him.

And honestly, we are on the verge of making ticket collecting an art form I’d rather not venture into.

shadow and lydia at lookout mt


Oh Me Of Little Faith

She tells me this is where Faith comes in.

If God had limited patience instead of limiteless patience, I would have worn Him out yesterday.

It was a hand wringing day. And I know better.

I am surrounded by nativity scenes. Hemmed in by mangers. One to my left, one to my right and one behind my doubting Thomas head.

The Trinity symbolized I see now, by my three scenes of His birth. And  I still wring the hands though He wrought a life of pain and sacrifice for me.

And even with the physical reminders of my Savior I still need to be told….and this is where Faith comes in.

She knows my deep struggle. She is what I needed God to bring my way months ago as my struggle as a parent of a child who learns like we all do, uniquely. Who is wired like we all are, by Father God, individually, with strengths and gifts. Who is growing, as we all are on this journey, at his pace marked by his beautifully and wonderfully made intricacies.

But a mother wrings her hands and a heart has been know to skip a beat or double up on beats. And she has come along to hold my hand in the dark nights of the soul.

And there is another too. Who writes a beautiful letter. He is patient and strong and godly. And he tells me things that make me cry, too busy in my doubt and worry to see on my own. Too close and too doubled over in confusion to see or own or know, truly. Words of confidence and hope. Words of affirmation and decisiveness.

The two come along side and bolster my spirits and I know they are life savers wearing flesh and blood and bones to a mother of waning faith.

And at the end of the night, when the black curtain pulls over a day marked with fatigue and anxiety she speaks into my soul. Words I don’t read until His new mercy morning arrives.

And she write these words “He is a great kid…we just all need to help him learn how to access his strengths and use them…it will come with time, patience, and persistence! HAVE FAITH!

And like the perfect storms of life, she is talking and texting and emailing me with a diligence and committment to shoring up my child’s struggles with a tender and firm spirit. And the calm before the storm comes in fact after the storm has passed.

She knows the language which sounds like Greek to my ears of misunderstanding and misinterpretation.  I am learning daily the language of ADHD. And it is Russian and Chinese and Hebrew all rolled into one. I need a translator. I need help.

It comes in the form of co-pilgrims and co-laborers.

I wrote a letter yesterday to my church  which was hard to explain to a questioning child. She looks on me with doubt and lack of understanding. I tell her, if you read my letter you will understand why I feel lead to step back for a season from serving.Because I know in the letter I have said I feel like this is an act of obedience. And there is confusion and fatigue from schism and division and I need a season of quiet and contemplation and prayer and clarity.

A pause in my serving to steady a wobbly spirit.

But I can see I have let her down. She worries that it means we are leaving the church. We are not. I am taking a pause in my service in several different capacities.

And the quiet sets in. And the last thing I want to do is disappoint a child.

But she is questioning and maybe confused. And who can read a sixteen year old girl’s mind.

So I look at the managers that hem me in. There are three. Some days I need one hundred and  three. Days like my yesterday.

I thank Him for His new Mercies, for the rain and for tears.

My husband walked in from Fishermen men’s ministry, last night.

Our friend spoke. He has months to live. He has cancer.

And when you have been in the midst of one so full of faith and full of life you radiate the Glory and the Hope that come beaming from the face of a man at perfect peace. From our friend Pete.

You bring all that home with you from a night in the presence of living, breathing, Hope.

He tells me pieces of  stories that Pete told the men. Some of it I grabbed and some of it my weary hand wringing self let fall to the ground.

A weary soul doesn’t hold tight to Hope.

But you long  to brush up against Hope like this and pray that the remnants and particules like dust fall on you and stay. Fall on a weary dusty soul. Dirty with doubt.

And I pray my daughter can wrap understanding around my walking away for a season of pause. That I didn’t throw in the towel , its only in the wash for a season of renewal. And to gain clarity of mind and heart and spirit. That in obedience to Him He will give me a language of love to explain to her rightly my decision.

Just like the language of understanding I need to learn to speak with my son in his struggles that are uniquely his own.

Its raining outside, the day weeps as I weep.

And I think that today I will play as I did when I was a child. With the manager scene. Didn’t we all. Move the pieces around and marvel. Look on the Mary and Joseph and the animals and the moveable baby Jesus.

I think I’ll move in a little closer to the manager today and the baby who bears the weight of the world and the weight of my sin.

And today, the weight of a mother’s pain as she seeks an increase in faith.

This rainy December day, I know anew, His mercies are new everyday.

And that I can proclaim Alleluia Anyway.

ESM and Stella

Linking with Emily, Jennifer, and Duane today. Joining Joy at joy in this journey dot com for Life Unmasked.


When Peace Walks In And Takes A Seat

Peace walked in at five o’clock sharp, sat down in comfy chair, sat fireside. And chatted like the days that never were before. Under a roof, and in a house, this one. All shiny penny new. There was a grown sound in the belly of the boy about to be a man. And he had caught Peace like you catch a cold. It just covers you up and you need boxes of Kleenex and some tender love from a momma. But here you need all eyes open wide to see that Peace has come and it was not caught, it was prayed for and waited on, and there are bits and pieces of the Prodigal all over this like one walks through the woods and picks up beggar lice. Its grace. But we’re not picking any of this off. No a momma thanks and praises and tells others like she did the other day. She told the momma with tears in here eyes, you stand on the edge of the cliff in that waiting. You stand hanging by the thread of hope, all worn and weary and dangling, and you never give up. You hold tight and hold fast and you pray hard and you claim and cling. And when the Peace stays longer than you thought you finally breathe and you exhale and you pinch your own skin and say it is not a dream. It is a walking miracle sitting by the fire and talking all grown-up man. A language so new and beautifully different, as foreign. And if they ever tell you otherwise, those who lose their hope and lost their hope all along the way, you say yes yes it comes, the peace. The journey walkers do walk in one day and drop their peace on a home. And the bag is full to overflowing with letters dipped in grace. Unwrap and open each one slowly. There is beauty there. Always cling hard, you momma warriors to the knowing that the one day peace will come. And maybe even at five o’clock sharp, as promised. But this time the promise kept, and the heart filled with peace and a new fullness of maturity and ripeness for the picking. With the tender fingers of the momma’s heart she picks up the pieces of the peace, holds them to her bosom. As longed for, waited for, peace settles on the home and sits by that crackling dancing fiery flame of warmth. She re-reads each letter sent straight with piercing to the heart. A bullseye to her soul. Savors the words spoken, written on her momma heart. They are good. And they warm more than any flickering orange flame from the brick laid hearth every could or would. Peace walked in at five o’clock sharp. I hope she’ll stay awhile. She warms the once cold places as she settles in and makes herself at home. I close the door and bolt it shut. While making up the guest bed, I pray Peace will stay a good long while.

joining Laura today at Laura Boggess dot com and with Jen at Finding Heaven Today and Heather for Just Write.

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