I haven't posted a blog post with actual word content in a very long time.
Finding the time and the quiet that necessitates such a post is few and far between these days, but I wouldn't trade this season for anything!
In fact, NOT being attached to a screen is kind of something I've been working on over the past couple of months...some days are better than others, but it is a personal conviction I've needed to get control over. So there's that.
But as I was sitting outside on this beautiful breezy day, in the shade of my carport after a nice little workout, sifting through 7th grade curriculum (how is that even possible?!) and just looking around me I began welling up with gratitude for all that God has given us.
I look at my Areyna Joy and the tangible joy that she is to be around. I see her growing beauty into young womanhood. I see her peacemaking spirit in action almost on a daily basis. I see her confidence in who she is in Christ. Can I just stop and say how special it is to see her activity on the Bible App that we share and how she is getting in the word all on her own now!
I see Zeke and how far he has come over the past few years. I remember the feelings of that difficult season with him so clearly but can hardly remember him being in such a difficult spot. I see his sensitivity and compassion. I see his creativity and leadership qualities growing. And the difficulties that come with an artistic kid like Zeke, who thinks outside the box, quickly becomes overshadowed by the positive qualities that accompany those exact same qualities.
My "mama bear" came out on behalf of my Alethia Grace this weekend! If you are not an adoptive mama you may not understand the magnitude of this, but the bonding process is most definitely a process. You might move forward a step but moments later fall back 10...but I feel like this past weekend was a stride in this mama's heart in my relationship with her. I have also seen her grow in so many emotional areas throughout this past year that I thought may never improve.
Cai brings the laughter that this Colony so desperately needs! His giggle, his jokes, his daily random facts, his artistic ability to create something from nothing...he is loud and overly inappropriate with bathroom humor to be sure, but man I love this kid (and the fact that he STILL lets me nibble those chubby cheeks!).
Jude, oh Jude...so extra, so sassy, so confident, so persistent. JUST. SO. MUCH. This kid is smart as a whip though. And when he is sweet, MAN he's sweet. He is an all or nothing kid. Determined to the core (unless he is tired...or hungry, ha). If he can't figure something out he'll keep trying until he does. Again, so many good qualities can and will come with his fire cracker personality.
What a blessing to be able to stay home and just be mom. I don't take it for granted...well, actually I do sometimes, but I am so very grateful for this opportunity. We may not have much wiggle room in the bank account because of this choice, but God NEVER ceases to amaze us with his provision, and over abundance that he lavishes on our family. From clothing, to food, to toys for the kids, activities for our family to do, childcare for dates, a beautiful safe home to open up to anyone and everyone. I don't even have to apologize for the bathroom issues anymore!
My husband loves and follows hard after Jesus and is so in tune with the Holy Spirit that he makes submission easy. Not perfect by any means, but he is humble and teachable and growing into such a sexy leader;) He loves me and the kids well. We are learning to fight fair and not hold things in. We have committed to learn from our own mistakes and poor choices, as well as other people's. And we wholeheartedly believe that we are not exempt from any temptation, meaning we are continually reevaluating and praying that we will be aware of the enemies tactics. We are learning to say "no" and all the freedom that comes along with healthy boundaries for our family and ministry.
Our life is not perfect. Kids disobey. Appliances break. Bank accounts are depleted. We hurt each others feelings. Relationships waver. People disappoint. Difficult seasons with friends, and each other, come in tidal waves...
He is so good, and so patient. He is always waiting for our repentance so that he can wrap us in grace and help us move forward. He loves to give good gifts to his children. And then smiles when we generously give them away.
Life is full of hurt and sin and pain. But God also allows these glimpses of good to hang on to. We all get them, we just have to be willing to see them. Contentment. And today I see it and I praise His Name, Jesus, the only one worthy of that name, for it ALL.