Thursday, March 25, 2010

Perfect Love

If you've ever been a nursing mother, perhaps you're familiar with the nifty little "family rooms" they have at some malls - complete with comfy rocking chairs, handy diaper changing table and sometimes even a magazine to peruse. A while ago, when my oldest son was just an infant, I was taking advantage of one of these rooms when the conversation between some of the other moms caught my attention. I wasn't eavesdropping - I had actually been a part of the conversation but when talk went from baby weight to husbands and stripclubs...welll...I just...clammed up. The ladies talked about their husband's unsavory behaviour as nonchalantly as they would discuss what they had for lunch. Yeesh! I left the little family room quite sad for how 'normal' infidelity was for some of these ladies. I also left with a thankful heart for my husband.

I feel blessed to say that I don't worry about 'other women' when my better half leaves the house. I don't have doubts fly when he comes home late. And if I found lipstick on his cheek...I would probably assume his mother had been around. :) I know my husband is not perfect (though close...) but I do feel confident in his love. His actions and manner with me over the years have spoken of his deep commitment and love.

God used my marriage this week to remind me of His own faithfulness and love. I was praying for His peace to replace fears in my life. Fear of the future, the unknown, of what God might allow in my life. I had let fear overshadow God's character. He showed me how I trust my husband and his actions towards me because I am confident in his love. Why couldn't I trust God and His actions towards me? He has shown me His faithfulness over and over as He has provided for my needs. He has shown me His delight in me in quiet moments when I sensed His presence. He has showered me with gifts of sunsets and meadows, friends and family, babies and my own prince charming. :) He has shown me unconditional love by giving His own Son for my wrongs. So, why would I doubt Him? Why would I not trust His actions towards me?

1 John 4:18 says; "There is no fear in love. Perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love (NIV)."

God's love is more perfect than we could imagine. We can have complete confidence in God's plans for us because they are made from perfect love. I pray that when fears come I let the proof of His love drive away doubts.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Daddy, Come?

My oldest son's world revolves around his father. "Daddy fix?", "Daddy's coat?", "Daddy's 'tar (guitar)?", "Daddy work?", "Daddy's 'soos (shoes)", "Daddy go?", and a million times every morning before lunch..."Daddy, come?"

Josiah knows that his daddy comes home almost every day for lunch. He will go about his morning routine of playing with his toys, sneaking dried pasta from the pantry, climbing up and down the stairs, upending our boot tray, chasing the dog with his mini hockey sticks and 'loving' his brother. However, numerous times he will stop, look at me and ask, "Daddy, come?" The first few times I tell him "Daddy will be home for lunch", and then as noon hour grows nearer I say "Daddy will be home soon". That gives him enough reassurance to keep on playing.

His longing for his dad is quite adorable and warms my heart. Josiah longs for his dad's return for a number of child-like reasons...wrestling, laughing, playing, singing, guitar playing, jumping, running ("fast" as he likes to say...) and watching Handy Manny together. But mostly just to be with his dad.

I wonder if God longs for us to have the same excitement for Jesus' return? Do we long to see what delights God, in His creative power, has waiting for us in heaven? Do we anticipate the music that will accompany God's glory? Do we look for the day when we will see loved ones who have gone before us? Do we imagine what it will be like to be free of every pain, worry and fear? Do we long to be with Jesus and finally see Him face to face?

John 14:1-3 says; "Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may know where I am."

I can learn a great lesson from my son. As much as he loves to play and go about his busy day, thoughts of his daddy coming home are never far from his mind. As an adult, I can definitely get caught up with laundry, dinner, work, schedules, husband and kids...but how far away are my thoughts on Jesus' return and eternity?

1 Thessalonians says that His return is something that we can encourage one another with.

"For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore, encourage each other with these words (NIV)."

So, be encouraged. Jesus, come? Soon!

Monday, March 1, 2010

For Tom...Vancover 2010

So, my husband loves (is obsessed with...) the Olympics. He said I should write a blog about the games even. So this is in honor of my favorite sports enthusist...

The fact that the Olympics were in Canada this year added to my husband's fascination. Our conversation was peppered with who was playing and when. I listened to who was in the running to win while eating my eggs, heard all about the story behind a hopeful gold medal winner while fixing my hair, found out who lost by a millionth of a second while putting on my get the picture. He knows all the athlete's names and where they're from - even in figure skating! This may be the only time in the next four years that he will tolerate ice dances - whatever would get our nation another gold. I was more excited for my husband than for Team Canada when they won the "big game" on Sunday night!

I have to say, I enjoyed the excitement myself. I especially love watching figure skating...I know, so girly of me...but I do.

I was so impressed again at how seamlessly the athletes dance their program. They make it look so easy. They are performing in front of the whole world with the pressure of a country depending on them for a medal and yet they seem to skate with such ease. They don't pause and try to remember the next step - it seems to come as natural as breathing. We watched one pairs team practice in a hallway with no skates and it looked as if they had been doing those same lifts and spins for all their life.

But, we all know that it didn't come that easy. The years of discipline and practice and falling and getting up again and early mornings and long hours all came down to that few minutes where now the choreography was almost a part of them. Perhaps that's how Joannie Rochette was able to perform so beautifully and capture a bronze medal after her mom passed away just a couple days before. All the hours of practice enabled her to complete her dream and her mother's even in the midst of such circumstances. The dance had become second nature.

It made me think of when Job, from the Bible, fell down to worship God even in the midst of great sorrow. I don't think it was a spur of the moment thing. I believe that Job's life had been a life of honoring God and drawing close to Him.

"There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil"(KJV) Job 1:1.

When destruction hit, it was just second nature that he would turn to his Lord. I pray that my life would be full of drawing near to Him so that in surprising moments, His will is my second nature. I pray that I would perform beautifully when someone buts in front of me in the line up or that I would answer softly when my child makes mistakes or that I would be ready with an answer for what I believe for the person sitting next to me in the airplane.

Let's get training!

"Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil...that you may able to withstand in the evil day, and have done all, to stand firm (NLT)." Ephesians 6:10-13