Wednesday, April 30, 2014

out of control.

Well, our much anticipated announcement was revealed on Easter weekend... we are parents!!

This has been such a beautiful experience already. [and that's not just because I have not been sick one single day since I found out he/she was in there - sorry other mamas] Harris and I prayed continually that the Lord would bless us with a child, and in His timing, He did! Our sweet little sour patch kid (nickname provided by sister-in-law) is healthy, growing, and a complete gift.

The biggest and most pronounced of the lessons I am learning as my adventure of motherhood begins is that I am completely out of control. Bare with me, experienced ones, as I discover this new world.

I have done nothing [outside praying and heeding the suggested precautions] to protect or provide for this little one. I am simply here. Me. The fact that he/she is in my body and thriving is literally the Lord's active work and blessing each day. I am constantly amazed.

The good and bad news about this is that my inability to control will continue when this baby is outside of my body and in this world. I will have no power to ultimately protect the baby from the sins of the world. I will have no power to ultimately provide for the baby's every need. God is only able to do so by His strength and by His provision. I'll be a glad and eager participant, in whatever way He would allow me to, but from the moment this baby was conceived, I have not had control.

The best news, however, comes from His Word:
"But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body."  -Philippians 3:20-21

Fortunately, this world is neither my, nor my little one's home. Our citizenship is in heaven. Until then, I have to rely on the Lord to provide for my needs and those of this life He has entrusted to me. I am completely out of control and completely humbled.

We look forward to sharing this journey with friends and family and continually pointing upward.
To Him be the glory!

Monday, April 14, 2014

why do you celebrate?

Yesterday at church, our pastor taught from the passage in Luke 19 about when Jesus came into Jerusalem on a donkey the week before He was crucified on the cross. That's because yesterday was a Christian holiday called "Palm Sunday". On this day in history, Jesus rode into town and the people laid down their coats and waived palm branches as a form of honorable welcome for Him.

I have heard the story many times, and I just figured it was a nice account of a time when believers welcomed their Savior with honor... but apparently it was not exactly what I thought.

Apparently the people in the town were mostly just glad that Jesus was coming for the reasons they wanted Him to come: to destroy their enemies, advocate for their political side, and generally be a dominating leader who would get them what they wanted (which they thought were 'righteous' wants, as humans tend to do).

They were not standing in awe that the Lord would come down in the form of Jesus and save their own confused, hateful, prideful, impatient souls. They were just glad to have a supposedly powerful ruler who seemed like he would fight against the "bad people".

I had to stop a minute and think about the number of times I have only been 'joyful in the Lord' when things are more or less 'going well' in a season of life.

I had to stop a minute and think about the number of times I have thought about the "bad people" in the world, and how much they needed to get what they deserve. (I'm ashamed)

The truth is, I deserve to get the worst of the worst. Fortunately, I had people in my life who love me, tell me about what Jesus truly came for, which is to save sinners like me. To give grace to those who do NOT deserve it. To give life to the lifeless. To offer peace for people who are restless. It's the opposite of how we naturally think the world works. That's grace.

As we come up on one of my favorite holidays, Easter, I hope that I am able to recognize and understand the gospel in new ways. I hope that I am not just excited because of what I think Jesus can do for my own agenda, but that I am excited because of what He has already done in my soul.