Thursday, February 27, 2014

No Arguments

I was reading in Numbers 27 this morning.

Here is a very brief recap if you are unfamiliar with the story.

Moses had been leading God's people for years through the wilderness, to a land promised to them.
I'm sure he did much that went against the his better judgement as he lead the Israelites, but one particular decision was the deciding factor that kept him from being able to actually take the final steps to leading these people into the land himself.

Starting in verse 12:

"The Lord said to Moses, 'Go up into this mountain of Abarim and see the land that I have given to the people of Israel.  When you have seen it, you also shall be gathered to your people, as your brother Aaron was, because you rebelled against my word in the wilderness of Zin when the congregation quarreled, failing to uphold me as holy at the waters before their eyes.' ... Moses spoke to the Lord, saying, 'Let the Lord, the God of the spirits of all flesh, appoint a man over the congregation who shall go out before them and come in before them, who shall lead them out and bring them in, that the congregation of the Lord may not be as sheep that have no shepherd.'"

The text never states that Moses had a rebuttal.
Or that he tried to prove his case.
Or try to fight for his "right"to enter that land and lead these people he'd given his life to lead.

I'm pretty sure if I had led these grumbling, complaining and most certainly annoying on occasion, people for 40 years in the wilderness, I would have felt entitled to be the one who led them into the land the Lord had been promising.  Like I deserved that privilege.

And I'm not sure if it was actually better or worse that the Lord allowed him to "see the land that I have given to the people of Israel" right before describing his deadly fate that occur before the actual entrance into the land.

Moses' lack of pity for himself turned to a concerned heart for the people who surrounded him during this heartbreaking exchange.

Instead of mulling over what he didn't get, Moses thought about the people who he had grown to love as he lead.  He wanted to make sure they would be taken care of, with a godly leader who could help them finish this thing in obedience to Christ.

In this, Moses was faithful to His God. His leader. His provider. His sustainer. The ONE who knew what was best for not only Moses, but for His people. For the story that would be read and passed down from generation to generation.

This generation.

Reminding me to look toward others and their needs, even when my own circumstances seem less than stellar or even unfair.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Words Worth Remembering

Cai:"Oooooohhh, I know it.  An apple is grapes."


Cai:"I weewee wish that flower seeds could growed up to be flowers."


Zeke:"I think I'm gonna have to try really hard to not have freakouts if I don't do good in Baseball."


Me:"Alright Zeke, for real.  Do that problem."
Zeke:"I just really want to tell you the words that I have in my head that I want to say."


Cai:"I know a good idea at we can do...Alethia you wanna go play outside and play in that water that smells like poop?"


while working on homework
Zeke:"Daaaaad. Less talking, more working!"


Me:"Cai you need to come outside.  We're going to play out here now."
Cai"But I didn't want the wind to be out here."


Alethia:"Mom, I tried to put my clothes in the laundry but it is getting big, big, big and has too many clothes in it."


crying at breakfast
Me:"Cai, what's the matter?"
Cai:"My bootie hotes?"
Me:"Your bootie?"
Cai:"Yes, my bootie hotes from all the pockets on it!"


shutting the door
Me:"Goodnight boys"
Cai:"Moooom, you didn't nibble my cheeks yet!"
Me:"Yes I did.  I JUST did!"
Cai:"No you didn't.  You only gave me kisses and hugs."
Jude: poking his cheeks saying, "cheech, cheech!"

Friday, February 21, 2014

Friday Free-For-All

Today is the first day in a long time that I haven't felt like I'm in a haze.
My mind is clear and focused.
My heart isn't racing for no apparent reason.
My fingertips aren't going numb and my legs don't feel like Jell-O.
My anxiety has vanished, just as quickly as it came storming in.

Deep breathes.
The silence isn't consuming.
The storm outside isn't depressing.
Contentment is here.

Nothing has changed.
But that's anxiety.
Sometimes there are definite triggers that set it off.
Sometimes, a lot of times, it's just nothing.

I have a dear friend who sent me a bunch of quotes about anxiety and depression.  This particular one has sung true for me...

"I yearned to get better; I told myself I was getting better. 
In fact, the depression was still there, like a powerful undertow. 
Sometimes it grabbed me, yanked me under; other times, I swam free."

The season on Lent is right around the corner.  I have a friend who is working on making So Much Bigger Than The Bunny into an ebook.  But for now, if you are interested in buying it you can go HERE.  Make sure you download the songs that go along with it HERE.

With the kitchen done(ish), the dining room complete and the living room finished (I'll post pictures of that later) I have decided to take a break and just enjoy what we have accomplished so far!  It's kind of nice to have those painting projects under out belt.  I can't wait to redo our countertops in the kitchen and fix the flooding issues in the basement:)

I had another idea for the ColonyShop.  A charm bracelet called "The Ebenezer Bracelet".  You can add different charms to it to signify key moments and monuments that God has brought you through.  Each disc would stand for something different.  Maybe it's just special moments you have walked through like the birth of a baby, your wedding day, the day you got saved, or a season marked with hurt or pain that you found yourself tested through.  Who wants to be my first test subject!  The bracelet with 1 charm will be $10 and then add an extra dollar for each additional charm/memory.

Ok, this rain is making me tired so I gotta get up and move around a little bit.
Happy Friday ya'll!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

New Favorite Space ~ Dining Room

Since we finished up the kitchen/laundry "space" we moved onto bigger and better things...

The dining room

This is our dining room at a glance before we painted and fixed it up

Here is what it looks like now!

We painted it grey

I painted the built-in corner cabinet white
and spray painted the hardware with silver rustolium

Then we used some some of the crate boards that we scavanged around the area
and framed in the chalboard I painted on the wall.

slowly but surely!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

He's 2 : the next generation

When Zeke and Cai were two I had ongoing posts of the shenanigans they would find themselves in.

Somehow I find myself here again.

With a two-year-old.

Who has jumped head-first into the world around him with strong will and endless messes fervor and eagerness.

So I decided, just like every season, to document for blackmail memories purposes.

I mean, I ALWAYS check the sink for the missing shoes I'm looking for;)

P.S. The ColonyShop giveaway awarded Jennifer Hamilton with a FREE necklace of her choice.
A huge thanks to everyone who participated and spread the word about our shop!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

ColonyShop Giveaway #ColonyShop

because the ColonyShop reached a personal goal of mine
(I'm honestly shocked it happened, but so thrilled)
and mailed off it's 50th item

and because the orders keep coming in

and because giveaways are just fun...

the ColonyShop is proud to present its first giveaway.

All you have to do is: 
"re-tweet" the giveaway tweet on twitter 
tweet about it and hashtag #ColonyShop

"share" it on Facebook but make sure you tag JoshTashaVia
so I can make sure I get your entries:)

I'll announce the winner on Wednesday
and you can pick the style and personalize it just the way you like!

Thank you to everyone who has helped get the word out about the ColonyShop.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Words Worth Remembering

while counting for hide-n-seek
Cai:"1,2,3,4,5,6,9...uh, heehee, I mean...1,2,3,4..."


Rainy:"So, who ended up winning the game last night."
Me:"Well it definitely wasn't the Broncos!"
Zeke:"So the OTHER team won?! That's awesome!"
Me:"What?! You were going for the Seahawks?"
Zeke:"I said I was going to go for whoever won, and they did!"
Me and Rainy:"You can't do that, ha!"


Friend:"Hey, how are you?"
Me:"I'm GREAT! I got a shower today!!!"


Cai:"Aleeeeethia! Come lay down so I can give you a mashosh!"


Cai:"I wished I could marry Karis."
Alethia:"But you can't cause she's your cousin."
Cai:"I know. I just wish I could because I love ho."
Alethia:"And you can't marry Rainy or me cause we are your sisters."
Cai:"Then who am I going to marry?"
Me:"God is going to find just the right girl that you will love and you can marry her."
Cai:"Who even started talking about this married stuff anyway?"


Cai:"I don't like to get shots...but Superheroes have to get shots."
Cai:"Do policemens have to get shots."
Cai:"What about bad guys. Do they have to get shots?"
Alethia:"and teachers have to get shots."
Me:"They sure do."
Cai:"When I growed to 5 I'm not gonna get shots anymore."


Alethia:"I know EVERYthing...but not really."


Cai:"I'm gonna put myself on silence for you, so shush!"


Cai:"Mom, you don't have anymore pickthie dutht?"


Zeke:"You know what I wanna be when I grow up?"
Me:"Yeah, an ice cream truck driver that tells people about Jesus and passes out "All That Glitters" CD's."
Me:"Well that's what you've always wanted to do before..."
Zeke:"Well I'm REALLY going to be Batman."
Cai:"And I'm gonna be Green Lantern!!!"
Zeke:"No Cai, you can't be Green Lantern. He's not real!"


Josh:"buddy, this is the 2nd time I've had to talk to you already this morning.  You are OLDER than Jude and you need to talk more kind to him when he is doing something you don't like.  You need to be more patient with him."
Cai:"Ah, I just keep forgetting!"


Cai:"Can I pass out the gummies, cause that's my chorb now!"
chorb = job/chore


Zeke:"Bye mom, I'll see you after school.  Try not to be anxious today, k? But if you do get anxious when I get home I'll give you a hug."

(they love me...EVEN in the midst of my storm.)

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Living A Life Of Significance In An Average American Home

Two different churches
in two different places
two different mission fields
Did you know that it is MY responsibility, YOUR responsibility to reach the lost people all around the world?

not the pastor's
not the student pastor's
not the family who sold everything to move to another country
not the seemingly super-spiritual person who knows theology better than I do
not the person who has been called into ministry

not even the person who seems to have more time than we do
or the other family with more resources
or money
or influence

The responsibility is OURS.

Our pastor always says, "wherever you eat, play, work or shop"...that is our mission field.

When 2 families in my family packed up their American lives to head to Uganda and Haiti I wrestled with the "normalcy" of my own life.  The lie that I wasn't doing enough for the Kingdom.  The fact that I wasn't selling all that I owned for Him.  The "un"adventurous life I now lived compared to them.

But after months of praying through this mentality I have realized just how important MY story is, right here in the "small town, bright future" of Rolesville.

Sure, we could sell everything we own and head overseas too, but that isn't where God wants us right now.  Josh and I have to continually ask ourselves where we will have the GREATEST impact for God.  And right now, that is in our small town with the families of our children's friends from school, the church body, specifically the worship team God has surrounded us with and my 5 little bundles of joy even though I wanted to pull my hair out because of them yesterday.

It doesn't matter where you work, if you are right where God has planted you.
Speak truth to those you work with.  Their souls are just as important as the starving soul in Uganda.

It doesn't matter where you live, if you are right where God has planted you.
Be grateful for this season of warm water that comes pouring out of your shower and the fast food you can pick up ANYTIME, and the washing machine that fits an entire load of sheets and blankets.  The people who live around me are just as important to God.

I have to shift my thinking.

Because God has a way of making sure we don't get too comfortable and in a moments notice I could find myself on the dirt roads of a third-world country again, or in a state completely outside of this Bible belt I've always known.

Don't take your purpose lightly.

Embrace where you are.
God has given it to you as YOUR mission field.

Make it YOUR responsibility to reach the people around you, WHEREVER it may be.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

It's OKAY To Fall Apart

I have a friend.
A "country" friend ya'll.
And when it's been "one of those days" she refers to herself as "a hot mess".

The first time I heard her say that phrase I about peed in my pants.
I'd never heard such a thing, ha!

You know what, though?
It's OKAY to be a hot mess sometimes?

It's okay if you feel like you're falling apart.
It's certainly not the best feeling in the world, but it's OKAY.

It means you are normal.
It means life happens and you are honest enough to not deny that there are parts of "life" that downright  hurt.
It means that the kids are doing everything BUT obey.
It means that people disappoint.
It means the funds weren't in the account.
It means that the health of a loved one has failed.

And it's ok to be a hot mess as you lean on Christ to get you through it.

You just can't stay there!

Get the help you need if you are having a hard time getting out of that hot mess.
Find the friends that encourage and walk with you through the real ups and downs of life.

You are going to have times where you are falling apart.
Everyone does, even if YOU don't see it.
You just can't stay there.

Monday, February 3, 2014

I'll Never Be A Jones

I don't think I'll ever be a Jones.

You know, that family whose mother wears the perfect style, always looking her best.
The kids with more fashion than my whole family put together.
The latest and greatest technological devices and the brand spankin' new car.
The American dream home with vaulted ceilings, plush carpets and no flaws.

The thing is, none of us will EVER be a Jones.

We try so hard though, don't we.

No matter what the cost.

We think if we can just find the perfect couch, or get that sweater at the mall, or upgrade the crappy phone, you name your "Jones' temptation", then we will finally feel complete.  Finally feel as though we've arrived.

This desire for more is a beast though.
Times are always changing.
Styles are continuing to evolve.
There are ALWAYS home projects to be done and upgrades to be had.

If I look closely at that American dream, that "Jones" mentality, I don't see a single relational aspect though.

We could have all the gadgets in the world, but if my husband was so glued to those gadgets instead of engaged with the little people pulling on his leg, it would be meaningless.

I could have an abundance of money to keep up with the beautiful and changing styles, but if my heart was so impatient and rude toward those in my home, the beauty would only get me so far.

There is nothing wrong with the Jones's.  They are a fine family...but if it means that the focus is on all the stuff, all the possessions, all the "junk", then I say "no thank you".

Give me a home where my family feels safe, even if the toilet keeps overflowing when my husband leaves town, ha!
Give me a style that I can embrace with what I have, and the car with the shorted CD player and weird creaking noises (it is working just fine isn't it?), the old house with fun projects to tackle together after the kids go down for the night (even if they end up taking WEEKS to complete;).

Give me a family with love and respect for each other and a fear for the God who has given it all to us.

That's all I want to desire.