An attempt to declare the Glory of God for what He has chosen to do with our lives. A legacy to leave to my children in the telling of it.

Monday, February 17, 2014

To Repent of an Inadequate View of God

Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God!
    How unsearchable His judgments,
    and His paths beyond tracing out!

 “Who has known the mind of the Lord?
    Or who has been his counselor?”

 “Who has ever given to God,
    that God should repay them?”

 For from Him and through Him and for Him are all things.
    To Him be the glory forever! Amen.
Romans 11:33-36

Tomorrow marks three years that my son has been in Heaven. The mother in me goes insane at the thought of that reality. I have been fighting the approaching date, knowing that it will eventually arrive, but not knowing what to do with it. The impossibility of honoring the meaning of such an anniversary makes me want to ignore it. Three years in the presence of God. My mind doesn't even know how to comprehend that.

On this side of eternity, the earthly pain of the anniversary was ushered in early via a wrong number dialed on a teen-age boys cell phone last Friday. A friend pushed the wrong button and the call rang through to our house and was answered by Rob. When he kindly asked what was up, the young fellow responded that he was headed out to go skiing with the youth group. Instant flashbacks found a grown man bauling in the kitchen on Valentine's day.

Flashbacks have been a constant companion of mine, also, the past few weeks. Paralyzing memories that bring on panic attacks and mind numbing apathy. Desperate prayers, void of any further desire other than for God Himself to come to the rescue. Longing for the reminder that this suffering is for His glory.

This morning, the dawning of the eve of the anniversary, found me in a sorrier state than I thought I was already in. Thinking that I could stoically make my way through this, God soon revealed that He had other plans. Plans to put me on my knees physically and spiritually. Plans that included many tears and much repentance over the lowly place that I have put Him.

Without realizing it, I had dethroned the King and minimized His very being. Whining and pathetic, I have enjoyed wallowing in my own created pity party and refused to even look up.

Nevertheless, in His mercy to haul me out of that pit, God revealed a glimpse of Himself and what I saw was glorious.

In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord,
high and exalted, seated on a throne;
and the train of his robe filled the temple.  

Above him were seraphim, each with six wings:
With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet,
and with two they were flying. 

 And they were calling to one another:
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty;
    the whole earth is full of his glory.”

 At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook
 and the temple was filled with smoke.   
Isaiah 6:1-4

I was graciously reminded that this was the God that Trent stands before right now. The God whose robes fill His temple. The God who sits seated upon His throne, ruling His universe perfectly. The God who gives me breath for this moment is the same God that chose the day of Trent's death, the ways to make Jesus' name known through it, and the same God that will sustain me until I see His face.

I was reminded all over again of my inadequate view of God.

For all you sweet well wishers who have prayed me through this trial and have wondered how I am faring this week, please take the time to watch this video by John Piper. This is how I'm doing. This is what I am hoping in:

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Cabin Fever

My children are witnessing to the dog.

Do we need any other evidence that cabin fever has set in with a vengeance? Creative excuses to get out of home school for the umpteenth cold day in a row runs rampant by this time of the winter season. Their great desire to assure that Lady goes to Heaven probably has little to do with the state of her canine soul and more to do with dealing with their fear of sending their good friend off to her new home. Besides Lady, there are her brood of barking offspring that are just about ready to find somebody else's house to chew everything in sight and demand potty breaks numerous times a day from their lucky new owners. Eight weeks of puppies and I am about dogged out.

The heralding ground hog saw his shadow over the weekend, assuring us that there would be several more weeks of this glorious winter wonderland. Honestly, I am glad. I have taken somewhat of a personal responsibility on myself for torturing all the rest of you in the northern region with such a ferocious season of cold and snowfall. You see, I have needed just such a winter and have prayed often to ask and thank God for it. The longer days have only added to the realization that the time is short to finish the work at hand.

In the midst of our big move I have been convicted to finish several huge projects before the weather turns nice, and the deep freeze has provided the opportunity to stay home and work on them.  Eight picture books are officially completed as of last night and just waiting for the finances to get them printed. Eighteen hundred and some collages later, with an average of at least ten pictures per page, (which doesn't even include all of the pictures taken in the last six years) and figuring that those pictures needed to be handled at least six times before their final format, means that in the last three months I have viewed and sorted some 110,000 pictures give or take. Hmmm.... anybody else convicted that we mothers just might take a few too many photos? But I wouldn't trade a one of them, nor do I regret the many hours behind the camera or the computer screen, other than the fact that my children are tired of not seeing my eyeballs and my back has become a tangled knot from being so hunched over as I peer into the little box of blinking lights.

The collages have been a therapy for me. A grueling, heart aching therapy. To relive Trent's life, and our life, before and after the accident has been emotionally exhausting. One that needed a long, cold winter to sort through.

My next project is to finish the two books that I have been plugging away on for too long now. OurCrazyFarm the Book is our story of life at the farm. Probably just for the family, it chronicles our move here and all the crazy adventures that were lived. When Hope Survives is a devotional book based on First Peter 1:3-9 that lays out God's glorious hope for the sufferer. After those accomplishments, I have great ideas that I feel God leading me towards to continue to write, write, write. Knowing that the time is short, I long to be faithful.

As far as the farm, we *think* it might be sold. A family who looked at it last summer has been trusting God to lead them to their desired farm, and this just might be it. Final details are working themselves out and we await a signed purchase agreement, but the tentative plans are to close by the end of March and move by June. I'm trying not to hold my breath while I anticipate that it could be this easy.

Everybody is starting to get nervous about the move. Living in limbo is so hard, and fear seems to be the first response to the unknown. That and witnessing to the dog. Upset children about getting the room that is minuscule inches smaller and has the window in the wrong direction are really screams to long to be in control. To give up every earthly thing that brings comfort is one of God's hardest and most gracious ways to pry our fingers off of this world. As I try to give the right answers, I am praying that it's the heart that will be changed rather than the living accommodations.

As for myself, I am almost refusing to let my brain race ahead. I am committing myself to the tasks at hand, trying to finish well here at the farm. Wrapping up the photo albums and the books are top on my list, along with home school, college planning, and a graduation in the Spring. Longings for what the new place will mean in terms of serving and seeking God continue to pop up, but I force them to stay in their little compartmentalized places until the other priorities are taken care of. But I can't help it. I am so ready to have our lives poured out in ways that we can't right now due to financial and time restrictions. To live as if Heaven is reality and this life is a mist. To be able to store up treasures there rather than building our Kingdoms here. I can't wait.

So for now we will work diligently on the tasks that God has given us. Continuing to plug away and wondering if this will be the day that Jesus returns. Hoping and praying for it, while at the same time attempting to be faithful until it is.