Monthly Archives: October 2015

Her Contagious Smile

I find it very ironic, I prayed for so many years for Katie to be healed, but now I find myself praying to be more like her. IMG_6710 - Copy Her smile says it all, I long for that simple, pure joy. Happiness that comes from just being alive, a mind that it not clouded with the things of this world. She teaches me every day about true happiness.

My favorite moments in life come from the smile on my children’s faces. At a young age, Lexi and Drew have lost a bit of that innocence, smiles don’t come as easily from simple actions. But for Katie all it takes sometimes is my face. When she gets off the bus after school I kiss her and look closely into her eyes, then the corners of her mouth shoot straight up to her ears. So simple!

My mind is filled with too many things of this world…all the ways I could be better, the activities that would be more fun than what I’m doing right now, the vacation spot that would be perfectly relaxing, or just the fear I get from watching a newscast. Katie doesn’t know about all of that, and while I try to protect my other two children, there is no sheltering them from wanting more. Since moving my family to a remote island with no TV or outside influence isn’t an option, how do I get more of that innocence and better yet, how do I instill it in my two youngest children?

“Joy is a consistent attitude of peace, confidence, and satisfaction within you because you know a loving God is at work, we don’t produce it, GOD does.” The Power of a Positive Mom by Karol Ladd

image3 (6)Katie is so lucky because her heart remains so pure and under Gods complete control. I have to remind myself every day, hand it over to God…let Him lead the way. It is a constant battle for each and every one of us to keep our eyes on God and to turn away from the things of this world. I think it has to start with simple things, like what we fill our free time with, the more we inundate our minds with God the more control He has over our hearts. It’s so easy to look around and see all the things we don’t have, all the material things that we think will make us happy. But God says it so plain and simple.

“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieve do not break in and steal. For where treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Matthew 6:19-21

IMG_6180When we die the stuff we have will not be coming with us, none of it will matter at all. The things of this world can only bring us temporary happiness because at any moment it can all be gone. Even the people in our lives cannot be the source of our happiness, because we all die. But when our joy is rooted in just being a child of God, happiness is automatic because that cannot be taken away. That is what is so special about Katie…she brings joy, she brings peace, she brings love because worldly things don’t filter God, He shines through so brightly.

You Need To Sit Down

These words of advice have been calling out to me for days now. Last week, they came from my priest when I finally went to talk to him. IMG_9146 I grumbled, “I just don’t get it, my youngest went to five day a week preschool this year, there is no one home but me for several hours every day. I thought I would have so much time, but instead I am just running in circles trying to accomplish a million tasks never giving anything the full attention it needs. I can’t even write my blog! When I try to string thoughts together too many things flood my mind… I type, delete and then just stare at a blank screen.”

He looked me square in the eye and said, “Girl, you need to sit down! Take time for yourself, take time to listen to God! You’re role as a mommy has been redefined a bit, you need time to figure it out.” But how? There is too much to do to sit down. The dishwasher has to be unloaded, and reloaded from the morning disaster, Katie’s prescriptions need to be renewed, doctor’s appointments have to be scheduled, research needs to be done for several issues Katie is having, and then there is that daily trip to the grocery store…the next thing you know it is 12:30, time to shove lunch in my mouth and head to carpool.

But he was right, I had to find time to refocus myself, what is my new role in the quietness of my home. I was so used to the constant movement of three kids this summer that I got lost in silence. Not what I was expecting! But unfortunately my mind doesn’t know how to stop, it constantly races with all that needs to be done. That’s it!! An Ah Ha moment…what really needs to be done? Does the house really need to be perfect, does my to-do list have to be filled with check marks or is life much simpler? IMG_9213 (1) I sometimes miss the beautiful moments, the moments of interacting with others. I’m in too big of a rush to actually listen to what my child needs, “Sorry honey we will talk later, we can’t be late for school.” Or I just look right through the nice lady in the grocery store who may have needed my help, I’m too focused on my list…always the list, that darn list!!

When I stop, take time to “sit down” and clear my mind I can hear God and He often says, “Just Love!” Everyday life presents opportunities to either show God’s love or not. IMG_9216 To stop and listen to Lexi or rush her along as if her words don’t matter. I can hook Katie up to her tube feeding with a thankful heart because she gets the nutrition she needs or I can gripe because it’s just not fair. I can yell at Drew to stop jumping on the couch or I can sit him down, patiently explain the dangers of his actions and thank God for his ability to jump. When I make my choices based on God’s will my life is way more peaceful.

God’s expectations are so much different than our own. Like in the story of Mary and Martha. Jesus visited the sisters and while Martha rushed to get a meal ready and make everything perfect, Mary sat at Jesus’ feet and just listened. This angered Martha, but Jesus says, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and worried about many things. There is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part and it will not be taken from her.” HELLO!!! My name should have been Martha!

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So as my role as mommy changes a bit I have a choice…I can strive for an earthy perfection that will never be enough or I can “sit down” and listen to what God has planned for me. It’s a daily struggle, but on more days I am making the right choices. The choices that lead to more love, more beauty and more peace.

“For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him.” Psalm 37:7