Today was my birthday. I turned 38. <<sigh>> I am not even 40 yet but this one seemed to weigh heavy on me.
My family blessed me so much today. Underdog brought me a Venti Chai Latte and a breakfast sandwich from Starbucks. (I wonder if he saved the receipt.) We cleaned house yesterday so there wasn't anything to do around the house. Here's what I did do:
* Spent a lot time this morning looking into different orphan care ministries that I would like to spotlight in future posts. Found some great ones.
* Found an app for my phone that will help me train for a 1/2 marathon that I want to run in October. WooHoo!!!
* Read a little more about barefoot running as I gear up to begin training again. I am hoping to run my next 5K in April in my 5-finger shoes. I LOVE my shoes.
* Found some budget planning software for us to use. Underdog and I are taking the Financial Peace University class with our church right now. The further we get into it and see the possibilities, the more excited we get. God is totally in this. We can see where this is really going to help us increase our giving and possibly even reduce how much we're consuming. Budgeting has definitely made me sit up and think about were all our excess income in going. I am hoping when I get my 7 challenge I'll see where even more excess if creeping in (or out in this case) and make further changes.
After I finished with all my internet work, I was finishing my day up with a quick note to friend. One of my children, who will remain nameless, needed to tell me something. Since this was the third interruption in two minutes I motioned to the child to wait until I was finished. Apparently this wasn't what this child wanted. When I finished the note and called the child back to talk to me they asked in the most snotty of voices, "Well I am not sure I should tell you because, well, how can I be sure you won't motion me away again."
Remember those moments as a child when you sassed your mom and you thought she was going to breath fire. Now you know what my child saw in me today. Honestly, this is the first this has ever happened with any of my children. (I think I know how my mom felt when I was a butthead toward her. sorry mom!!)
I won't go into much detial, but let's just say that this child will probably never be snotty or sassy with me again. After breathing fire, giving a fairly significant grounding, and then dad stepping in, I am pretty certain I will never have anything but great respect coming out this child's mouth in the future (yeah, right!) We had a good talk after everyone had calmed down and I've definitely seen heart change this evening.
Part of the catalyst behind is how this child has been spending time recently. We have a tremendous opportunity taking place at home right now. Several of the boys on our block now congregate in our front yard playing basketball. Many of these boys are from single homes and there are several families living in one home. There is no dad and so Underdog sees a great opportunity to be involved as mentors to these boys. Our boys are also making some pretty good friends. But these friends don't share the love for Jesus that we do. We hope that someday they will. That is our prayer. But until that point, there is a worldly influence on our children that they are not familiar with yet. So we're seeing the need to be certain we help our children understand that they are to be a light in the dark out there. Have fun. Talk smack that doesn't include corruptible talk. Remind your friends when there is corruptible talk that mom will move the van in to the driveway and end the game. She end it for a couple of weeks if her five year old comes into the house again speaking corruptible talk. Be bold enough to stand up when the standards of our house are broken but be gracious. This takes alot of courage for our kids and time to learn. This one child was seeing something different from the way our family practices life. This child is learning the difference between talkin' smack with your friends on the court and talkin' smack at your mom when you're unhappy with a decision she's made. It will take time and there is great grace to cover those times when they don't. They are just kids and need much encouragement. God is at work in their lives to make them who He needs them to be. This was one of those opportunities for both of us to grow.
When that was all said and done, dad got our burgers on the grill and I took a bath to get ready for church tomorrow. The burgers were great, as was the conversation we had to go with it. I love sitting down to dinner with my family. Once dinner was over we started kitchen clean up and then my in laws called to wish me Happy Birthday!!
My favorite part of the evening was the new tradition we've started for our birthdays. Each person that is old enough to write in the house must write a special birthday blessing or letter to the birthday person. I LOVED my letters. According to these very authoritative letters:
* I am the best mom in the world (sorry all you other moms, I got you beat!!)
* Despite having one child mad at me yesterday, they realized the error of their way and decided that I was necessary for their life.
* I am better than chocolate cake and "I love you forever, I like you for always, As long I'm living my mommy you'll be." <<sniff, sniff>>
* Again, I am better than chocolate cake and the greatest mom in the world.
I will treasure those letters forever. They are better than the gifts I did get. hehe!! I got a recycled necklace. It's beautiful!!! I got a beautiful homemade flower pen that I will be able to use at the speech and debate tournament (I always have my special flower pens with me!!) In the spirit of Living Little, Giving Big, my family gave me a pair of Tom Shoes. Buy a pair of shoes, they give one away. Yay!!!!!! If consumerism must take place, I'll take it. And finally, my sweet husband with the stash of cash I apparently didn't know existed, is going to take me to Cirque De Soleil. He saw this show while he was in Las Vegas on a business retreat with his new company. He was so fascinated by it that he decided to take me. We're definitely not in the seats he wanted but I just feel blessed to get to go.
The night is almost over. The kids are playing the Wii, because there is a birthday in the house. LOL!!!! Dad is working on Big Sunday material for tomorrow and I am here blogging. Once I sign off, we'll pour of glass of my favorite wine (Underdog bought that for me too) and race each other in Mario Cart.
It's been a great day. There is a restlessness in my spirit BUT I am at peace as I know that the Holy Spirit is working change in my heart. I have no clue what the next year will look like. So many changes are coming our way in the coming year. Exciting but (at times) frightening changes. Learning to live little and giving in big ways. God is Sovereign over it all. He was reigning the day I was born and He will still be reigning as King next year. I am growing to love my Lord and King in new and exciting ways. Sure does make getting up in the morning for the start of another a whole lot easier.