Being a Mom :)

I started writing this post July 9th, but since I don’t have internet access at home, it’s taken me a little while to actually get it posted 🙂  Enjoy!

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I’ve learned a lot about being a mom in the 4 weeks since Johnathan joined our little family.  It’s all been a learning experience, but it didn’t really hit me until yesterday, just what being a mom really is.

It’s sacrifice. 

I always knew being a mom wasn’t easy, and required a lot of work, but I never truly understood the amount of sacrifice, and selflessness it took.

Gone are the nights of being able just to sleep – here to stay for awhile, are the nights of getting up every few hours to nurse a hungry baby, change a messy diaper, and rock my little guy back to sleep…while fighting not to fall asleep myself.

Gone is the freedom that I used to have to just be able to take off with Kyle at a moment’s notice and go do something fun – now we either have to plan ahead, or sometimes I just get ‘left behind’ because it would be too difficult to take Johnathan.

Gone is the ability to “plan” my day – now it’s just a matter of getting done what I can while Johnathan’s sleeping, or between feedings, and diaper changes.

Gone are the days of being able to put on an outfit in the morning and wear it all day – I now have more laundry than ever, due to baby spit up, and overloaded, leaky diapers.

And if that was all I focused on, then life would be very discouraging and overwhelming right now.  But it’s so much more than that! It’s all the ‘little’ things that keep me going, and make it so worth the sacrifice, and selflessness…like a little toothless smile as he dozes off right after he’s eaten, or those times right after his bath, when he’s all fresh and clean and in his pajamas, and I can just cuddle and rock him.  It’s those little cooing noises he makes when he’s swinging in his swing; happy as can be.  It’s those big, baby blue eyes looking up at me; so full of wonder and amazement.  It’s his little hand holding tight to my finger.  It’s his little head on my shoulder as he sleeps; feeling his warm breath on my neck.  It’s the funny facial expressions he makes when he’s looking at me (my favorite is when he crosses his eyes and purses his lips!).

So yes, while life as a mother can be very taxing and draining (both physically and mentally), it can also be the most fulfilling thing ever!

But it does take an amazing amount of sacrifice and selflessness.  I have to learn to put Johnathan’s needs before my needs/wants.  I have to learn not to dwell on what I can no longer do, and instead, focus on what truly matters, and thank the Lord for this time of life.

I have found that the most difficult times for me, are when I do get my focus off of what matters, and focus totally on myself and what I’m not getting.  When that happens, I find myself very emotional and worn out (just ask Kyle, he’ll tell you just how emotional I can be at times! 🙂 ).

I’ve said to myself during difficult times that “this too shall pass”. But at the same time, I don’t want to miss out on this time of life.  There are so many little joys at this stage, if I just keep my focus where it needs to be.

Let me end by saying this…..being a mom is wonderful – albeit challenging at times – and I wouldn’t trade it for anything! 🙂

Sara & John

 

Life is Not a Dress Rehearsal

I don’t normally post twice in one day, but today is an exception 🙂   I just finished reading the last chapter of “Life is Not a Dress Rehearsal” by Sheri Rose Shepherd , and it is so good that I want to share it with you all…and ask that you truly think about what it says.  I know for me personally, taking every chance I get to witness and tell others of what God has done for me, is definitely something I need to work on.

Life is Not a Dress Rehearsal

“Every day, each of us gets only one chance to live for Christ.  The opportunities we have to witness for Him that day will never come again.  We can’t keep waiting for something big to happen.  It’s happening now, as you read this.

If the curtain comes down and this is your last day, will you go to heaven?  Are you sure?  God tells us there’s only one way to heaven, and He made it possible for us to get there by sending His only Son to die so that we might live.  (Read John 3:16-17.)

I heard a true story that gives some sense of the sacrifice God made for me.  There was a man who worked on a drawbridge, lowering it when trains were scheduled to come across, but otherwise keeping it raised so ships could pass underneath.

The father had one child, a son, whom he loved bringing to work with him.  Every day they would visit together in the tiny cab high on the bridge where the controls were.  They ate lunch together and watched boats go by underneath them.

One day the man heard the whistle of a train.  An unscheduled express was barreling down the track, headed for the drawbridge at full speed.  He ran to the controls to lower the bridge, but as he looked out the window, he saw his young son had fallen in the gear mechanism.  His mind raced frantically for a solution, but he knew there wasn’t time to rescue the boy and lower the bridge.

This left the man with a horrible choice.  He could leave the bridge up, saving his son and killing hundreds of passengers on the train, or he could lower the bridge, crushing his son in the gears but allowing the train to cross safely.

With his trembling hands gripping the lever that would, in an instant, be both an instrument of salvation and of destruction, he looked through tear-filled eyes, casting one last look down at his only son.  Then he closed his eyes, turned his head, and pulled the lever that lowered the bridge.  As the train went by, he saw passengers inside talking, eating, reading newspapers, or napping, completely unaware of the sacrifice he had made so they could live.

Every day, so many of us take life for granted, never giving God a thought, never acknowledging that He allowed His Son to die so we could live eternally in heaven with Him.  There was no other way to save us.  The cross is no longer a symbol of death and sacrifice; it is a symbol of life everlasting.  That is a sacrifice we cannot afford to waste.  Every day counts.  There is no rehearsal.  There is only the daily reality of the cross, our salvation – and God’s infinite love.

Who’s running the show in your life so far?  You or the One who created you?  If you were to leave this life today, what would you be remembered for?  What would you wish you had done, or wish you hadn’t done?  Does anyone in your life today need to hear you say, “Thank you,” “I love you,” or “I’m sorry?”

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The Secret of the Alabaster Box

I just started reading a book tonight called “Lady in Waiting” by Debby Jones & Jackie Kendall, and so far I am really enjoying it!!  The following excerpt I found really interesting and it made me think…alot! 

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The Secret of the Alabaster Box

 In the days Jesus was on earth, when a young woman reached the age of availability for marriage, her family would purchase an alabaster box for her and fill it with precious ointment.  The size of the box and the value of the ointment would parallel her family’s wealth.  This alabaster box would be part of her dowry.  When a young man came to ask for her in marriage, she would respond by taking the alabaster box and breaking it at his feet.  This gesture of anointing his feet showed him honor. 

One day, when Jesus was eating in the house of Simon the leper, a woman came in and broke an alabaster box and poured the valuable ointment on Jesus’ head (see Mk. 14:3-9).  The passage in Luke 7 that refers to this event harshly describes the woman as “a woman in the city who was a sinner” (Lk. 7:37). 

 This woman found Jesus worthy of such sacrifice and honor.  In fact, Jesus memorialized her gesture in Matthew 26:13 (see also Mk. 14:9).  This gesture had such meaning, for not only did she anoint Jesus for burial, she also gave her all to a heavenly Bridegroom.  Yes, she was a sinner (who isn’t according to Romans 3:23?), but this sinner had dreams and wisely broke her alabaster box in the presence of the only One who can make a woman’s dreams come true.

 What is in your alabaster box? Is your box full of fantasies that began as a little girl while you listened to and watched fairy tales about an enchanting couple living happily ever after?  Have you been holding on tightly to your alabaster box of dreams, frantically searching for a man worthy of breaking your box?  Take your alabaster box to Jesus and break it in His presence, for He is worthy of such honor.  Having responded to your heavenly Bridegroom in such a manner, you can wait with confident assurance that, if it be God’s will, He will provide you with an earthly bridegroom.

How do you know if you have broken your alabaster box at the feet of Jesus?  Such a decision will be reflected in reckless abandonment to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.  When the Lord gives you a difficult assignment, such as another dateless month, you will receive His terms without resentment.  Your attitude will reflect Mary’s response to the angel when she, as a single woman, was given a most difficult assignment.  Mary said, “I belong to the Lord, body and soul…let it happen as you say…” (Lk. 1:38).

 Take your alabaster box, with your body, soul, and dreams, and entrust them to Jesus.  When He is your Lord, you can joyfully walk in the path of life that He has for you.

Alabaster Box