Tuesday, October 11, 2011

This is the Day that the Lord has Made

It is 7 am and my 2 little ones are sleeping, Tim is upstairs reciting verses with the 2 older ones, and I just finished reading my Bible and eating a bowl of cereal. It smells like coffee. I don't like the taste of coffee. I have tried to like it because it looks so fun when other people drink it. But, I love the smell of it because it reminds me of Tim.
It is quiet. Really quiet. I love it when it is so quiet that I can hear the sound of the train from miles away. I am thankful for God's peace and the stillness that He brings to my life and to my heart.
Hope has been sick for days and miserable. She just moans. I told my mom she could have been a professional mourner like they had in the Old Testament who would come to funerals and moan and cry for a profession.
She is so cute. So unlike the boys. I am hoping she turns a corner today.
I had just finished nesting and stocking my deep freeze with food from Sam's for Tim and the children for the next month. It was packed. Yesterday, it just stopped working so I have been in panic mode cooking roasts, chicken and anything else I could salvage while we wait for a repair man to fix it. That was not on my list of things to do during the last couple days of pregnancy. My house also smells like barbecue beef this morning because it cooked all night. And now I have 2 more roasts to cook! Oh well, I guess I see it as an opportunity to clean out the freezer and stock pile on frozen meals. I am just so grateful to have food. God has truly blessed us by supplying so much food we need a deep freeze.
I slept through the night last night without going to the bathroom. That is a miracle from heaven and I am so grateful! I am very uncomfortable in the night whether I just can't get situated or am having a calf cramp that sends me to the moon in pain, or going to the restroom, it is always interesting to see what happens after I close my eyes.  My baby feels BIG. I think he might just break through my skin like the Incredible Hulk if he isn't born soon. That is what it feels like is happening. You know it is time to have your baby when YOUR TOWELS ARE TOO SMALL- lol. Pregnancy is so fun. Such an adventure! I praise God that He has let me experience the beauty of pregnancy 5 times. Even in the end, I love it. LIFE is a gift.
Tim and I are both growing in our relationships with God. It is such a blessing to have Christ in marriage because it is always getting better... purer... richer... fuller... deeper...sweeter. Now that my mom is here, I spend every spare second with Tim. I just love to be around him. To hear him talk about what God is teaching him and what he is learning in the Word while we drive to Lowe's to get light bulbs. To watch him teach our children. To watch him change into the image of Christ more and more before my very eyes. To listen to him weep over his sin and talk about the holiness of our God. I still love the touch of his hand in mine. We both know that God is calling us to do things we simply cannot do and we are both so desperate for His strength and power.
We are hopeless apart from Christ.
It is incredibly humbling to have been given such a sweet gift that I don't deserve... a godly husband to serve the Lord with and walk toward heaven with every day. I hope we have enough to time to grab hands in the twinkling of an eye as we soar to the clouds to be with the Lord forever. Single girls, don't believe the lie that marriage DEVOLVES. That is not true. Marriage centered on Christ just gets BETTER. I heard 2 men talking about marriage in the line at Wal-Mart the other day in a very negative way. It hurt my heart. It hurt me for their wives. It made me sad that they have been ripped off from knowing the closest thing to heaven on earth.
 Has our marriage been perfect? No. We have both tried to destroy it with our stinky, rotten flesh but God is greater and forgiveness is powerful. And the tide of grace washes away the power of our sin. Christ is the strong cord and we are the two weak ones. We break, He mends. We knock, He opens. We cry out, He answers. We trust, He supplies. We confess, He purifies.  We fall, He picks us up.
We fail, He gives victory. We love, because He first loved us.

Here is a cool verse I just found...
"The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law."
Deut 29:29

As I am reading straight through the Bible, sometimes verses jump off the page and speak louder than others. I don't know why that is other than reading the Word is like having a conversation with a Living Person Who speaks to you.
I love reading straight through the Bible. I have done that for years. I like that I never have to wonder what to read next and I also love reading the whole Bible.

This verse reminds me where our focus should be. On the things plainly revealed in Scripture and on teaching them to our children but most importantly FOLLOWING/OBEYING these Words. I have seen (many times) people get caught up in trying to solve mysteries in Scripture or trying to gain some "secret knowledge" superior to the simplicity of the Word. There are things God hasn't made clear to us. Things (as Job said) "too wonderful for me to know!". If we get caught up in chasing after these unrevealed things, we will get off track, get weird, and very UNPRODUCTIVE.  People can get more interested in cracking the code of God's Sovereignty vs. Man's Responsibility than they are in "going into all the world and preaching the gospel".  There are some things we can't understand. And, when we try to go after the secret things God left unclear for our finite brains, we can get way off track. We don't know much about heaven or our new bodies but we do know what God wants us to do now... OBEY HIS WRITTEN WORD. Tim and I were talking last night about what we think Jesus will look like when we see Him. Will He still have the nail scars He took for me? I do know His face shines like the sun and fire comes from His eyes as a jealous Husband coming for His Bride who has been endangered by a villain. But, I can't wrap my mind around eternity or heaven or the Banquet He is preparing for me... and for you. I CAN wrap my mind around Romans 12:9
"Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good."
I could spend the rest of my life focused on obedience to that ONE verse along with the thousands of others.
Don't get me wrong. You KNOW I feel strongly about being a STUDIER of God's Word. It is our life because it is alive... it is Christ!
"that you may love the Lord your God, that you may obey His voice, and that you may cling to Him, for He IS YOUR LIFE and the length of your days;" Deut 30:20
So, study it! Memorize it! Meditate on it!  OBEY it. But don't go places where our minds simply can't go because God hasn't revealed it.  You will get weird fast and off track if you chase mysteries and read books by men who claim to have discovered "the more excellent way". The greatest philosopher in the world is not worth following if he doesn't teach the Word in a clear, simple, understandable way. God's Word is not hard to understand. I would much rather listen to the insights of a child than those of a philosopher who overthinks everything and spends 5 hours explaining why the text is allegorical instead of literal. That is dangerous-run from those teachers.
God's Word isn't complicated.
"The entrance of Your words gives light; It gives understanding to the simple"
Ps 119:130
And don't miss the other part of the verse. Who has He revealed things to? US AND OUR CHILDREN! What a blessing. God is the One who reveals things to our children. He has commanded us to teach them but He is the Revealer and He is faithful. This promise allows me to rest as I spend hours discipling my children. I am to be faithful but He is the One who does the true works in their hearts.
"But even as Jesus took three years off from the work of the universe in order to pass his ministry on to his disciples, to live with them, eat with them, love them, instruct them, so as mothers, if we want the same kind of life-changing impact on our children, it will require the sacrifice of our time, our commitments, and it will be inconvenient and life-consuming. But leaving godly disciples is the greatest work we will ever achieve."
~ Sally Clarkson.
I am headed to the doctor today. I should deliver my baby within the next few days. I have 1,000 emotions that will all come out after he is here I am sure. I feel very close to delivery. I am starting to wonder if my doctor will send me to the hospital when I see him this afternoon.
Tim reminded me of something cool. Remembering that when Christ was speared in the side that water and blood poured out:
"One of the soldiers, however, pierced his side with a spear, and immediately blood and water flowed out."
John 19
This is such a powerful picture. Blood and water are the two fluids present at BIRTH. These two fluids that poured out of Jesus Christ were pointing to the birth of the Church!
My Birth! Your Birth!
It is a message to you if you aren't yet a Christian: That His death had the power to give you life.
I will be thinking of that in the delivery room as I deliver ONE child.
That Jesus went through the ULTIMATE delivery- of the world!
Respond to His love. Receive the new life that He died to give you today.
The water and blood were proof that you can have LIFE and DELIVERY from the prison of your sin.
Praise God He sent His Son for us!
"I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full."
John 10:10

I think I have so many emotions about my delivery at this point, I
m numb and just walking forward by faith. I love this adventure that Jesus Christ invited me into when He proposed to me in college to come away and be His Bride. It truly is the greatest love story ever told. He was right.... I could have NEVER DREAMED any of this.
 "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him"— 1 Cor 2:9

"Here's my heart Lord. Take and seal it. Seal it for Thy courts above."

Be Blessed!
(And please pray for my baby boy)


Anonymous said...

I love your comment about a marriage centered on Christ getting BETTER. It is so true! My husband and I will be married for 20 years this December and our marriage is sweeter than ever because of the work that Jesus has done in us and through us. I, too, often hear of couples that do not know Jesus talking of how miserable they are after 20 years of marriage, and they refer to their spouse in such a negative way. So sad! Marriage is a picture of Jesus and His church. Talk about a mystery that we will never figure out this side of heaven! All I know is that I want my marriage to glorify Him and I know you do too! May you be blessed during your upcoming delivery. God's grace will come upon you when you need it! XOXO

Nic said...

I loved that part too! Enjoy your birth.....it is an amazing gift. I can't wait to hear about your new little guy! Praying for you!

3 Blondies Cupcakes said...

Pray for that baby boy everyday! Can't wait to see him. You are such a strong christian! Such an inspiration.

Erin Southwell said...

Steph, I am praying for baby specifically. I already love him. He will probably change the world because of the way God is speaking truth and love tthrough his beautiful mama.

We celebrate our 9th anniversary this year and it does get better with time-like fine wine!!! My heart also breaks for the reputation that marriage has gotten has gotten in our modern (broken)world.