Hey friend. I’m so glad we could get together. I’m loving all the fall flavors and feels and definitely the Pumpkin Spice Lattes. I can’t believe we’re already staring down the holidays, and before life hits warp speed, I wanted to make sure we could take a few minutes to catch up. Love you so…
This is one of those tender seasons for me…
And as such, there will probably be a few tears. We’ve entered fall with a certain weariness that weighs on us in a sad sort of way. So much around us feels broken – internally, externally, globally even – and our constant prayer is that God would take what we see to be broken and make something beautiful out of the mess we are standing in.
He’s the only one who can.
We’ve prayed a certain prayer for over the last eight years, and still we have not seen God’s full and complete answer. We’ve encountered His faithfulness and His goodness and even His work in our lives that is nothing but miraculous, but not the prayer itself answered.
And waiting, friend, is such hard, hard work.
Harder perhaps than the sleepless nights, and college classes, and growing pains eight years of building a family have brought us. Maybe even harder than the struggle itself we wrestle with. Because waiting feels like silence, and forgottenness, and invisibility while life charges full steam ahead for everyone else.
We really thought things would be different by now.
That this prayer we pray would now be a testimony of God’s finished work in this chapter of our lives. A period at the end of a very long and complicated chapter. A page turn and blank space full of promise ahead of us.
But it’s not yet.
So we’re straddling a very uncomfortable place of uncertainty, living in a reality we wouldn’t choose, believing for one that hasn’t yet come. We are – as Mark Batterson has so perfectly worded it – working like it all depends on us, and praying as if it all depends on God.
Because at this point, it does.
I am looking forward to Christmas this year even more than I normally do. There is so much beauty about the holiday, so many wonderful family memories, but more than anything else – it reminds me that I am not the only one who waits. I’m not the only one who has spent long nights and tiring days looking for hints of God’s promise and His deliverance in my everyday life.
Most importantly, it reminds me that in all the ways it matters, He already has provided. He has already redeemed. He has already made straight the crooked paths before me. He has already sent the most complete kind of deliverance in His Son.
And I am so grateful to be reminded.
We are just now settling into something of a routine with school after what has been the most difficult start of our entire four-year homeschooling experience ever.
I know that sounds dramatic. But homeschooling with a toddler is like nothing I’ve ever done before. The level of distraction has been raised by about a thousand percent, third grade itself is some serious kind of schooling, and we cannot find a normal sleeping routine to save our lives.
But this is the season we’re in, and like my friend Leah reminds me all the time, there truly is magic in our mess. Micah is starting to say words. Noah has decided math isn’t all that bad. Elijah is engaging history and culture in new ways.
All struggling aside, I love this more than I ever thought I could, and there are days I am amazed this gets to be my story.
Since summer I have been working on some really exciting site updates – the most visible of which is a new design and layout – thanks in part to some really honest feedback about the look and feel of my original site. I am doing this again as a solo project, so it’s definitely more slow moving than I’d like, but it’s incredibly cost effective. So yay!
Feel free to nose around if you’d like, but be gracious. Lots of links and landing pages need to be updated and reordered. So you’ve been warned :).
And of course I’ll let you know when it’s finally finished!
What I’ve been reading…
Sometimes when life gets a little stressful, I read. A lot. Here’s some of my favorites over the last couple months:
Finish | Jon Acuff
I’ve been a huge fan of Jon Acuff since his book Quitter, and Finish did not disappoint. Not only is he funny and incredibly smart, Jon possess a certain talent of taking solid business concepts and making them accessible to the average person trying to make something of their everyday life. Finish is all about goals – so it is as appealing to someone trying to achieve that promotion at work as it is to me as a stay-at-home, homeschooling mom of three who’d like to shed a few pounds.
It totally could have been easy for me to read this book and feel marginalized by my situation, but instead I felt empowered to pursue my own dreams at a pace that makes sense for this season of life. Perfect message for me right now!
The Baxter Family Books | Karen Kingsbury
Ok, so full disclosure, I think Karen Kingsbury is an insanely brilliant book writing machine. How she is able to churn out title after title after title and land them on the NY bestsellers list ALL THE TIME is beyond me. She gives me serious #writinggoals.
But what is even more brilliant is that she has a series of books surrounding one family that spans TWENTY-SIX NOVELS AND COUNTING. Since I’m starting about ten years late, it’s like a written soap opera I can binge as I please. Which, of course, is exactly what I’ve been doing!
Since July, I have read ELEVEN of the twenty-six Baxter family novels. This is a serious personal record for me and I am absolutely unequivocally hooked on the drama of this family. Because I love you, I’ll include a LINK for the first five titles as a Kindle collection (The Redemption Collection), and a LINK from Karen’s website for all the titles ever written about the Baxters.
And because Karen is so stinking successful, you’ll likely find ALL OF THEM at your local library or through interlibrary loan. You’re welcome :).
Alright it’s your turn.
What’s new? How are you doing really?
What are your kids going to be for Halloween?
And what are you doing for Thanksgiving!?
We’ll talk soon….
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