Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Music for the soul...

One of my favorite things is to hear the sound of my children's little singing voices...drifting from their bedrooms.

Things like "glowious an' mighty, yor awsum in buty" and "gwace upon gwace flows down, flows down..." (Levi) or "...that saved a wretch like me, I once was lost, but now am found..." and "let your kingdom come, let your will be done, so that everyone might know your name." (Ella).

They both have such a vast repertoire of music in their little minds. Ella knows many more than her brother and has an incredible knack for retaining ALL the words and the tune. She sings when she is resting, she sings when she is playing and she makes up songs to talk to me.

Her soul is full of music.

And it is good music.

Sound, solid, Christ-centered stuff that is filling her mind and heart.

I was encouraged by a recent post on Girltalk that was helping mothers of young children find ways to preach the gospel to themselves throughout their busy days. The whole series was good...actually excellent. Their final point was "listen to gospel-centered music". (They linked directly to Sovereign Grace Music...which is a personal favorite of our household as well.)

I don't have music on all day. I relish quiet moments that are fleeting. :o)

But when I do listen to something (which means my kids are too), I want to be sure that it is going to uplift my soul and keep my mind in the right place. I don't want mindless "easy-listening", "soft-rock favorites" that leave me empty, without any hope.

I want something with words and melodies that enhance my relationship with the Lord and instill attitudes and actions of peace, joy and praise in my children.

Sounds like alot to ask from a song, doesn't it?

The song is not what saves, but it is a part of the list of good things I want "taking up space" in my children's (and my) brain.

Instead of "the wheels on the bus", we are singing "Fairest Lord Jesus"...instead of "the farmer in the dell", it's "Holy, Holy, Holy".

I love it.

And it is just one of many ways to feed my soul and more importantly...

the souls of my children.

So if you are a busy person :o)...then I would encourage you to use the gift of music God gave us as a tool to feed your soul and stimulate your mind. You can use it while you're washing dishes, playing with children or running errands. The possibilities are endless and the rewards can be great.

I wish you could hear my daughter in her bed even now..."then sings my soul, my Savior, God to Thee, how great Thou art, how great Thou art..."

That precious little voice...high and squeaky...

and beautiful.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Things to unpack...

So you are probably wondering...what is taking her so long to unpack?:o)

Well, I have been thinking back through this past year and the events that took place. Starting back in April when we moved out of our home in East Wenatchee and Josh stopped real estate and started seminary.

We moved in with Greg & Candy for 4 months and then moved to Portland. Living with Carey & Tarah, Josh was in school full-time, I was coaching volleyball and Josh was commuting to GCC every weekend.

Now we have returned to Greg & Candy's while our homes are rented and Josh continues his commute weekly to Portland for school. I am back to work at the hospital and we are worshipping as a family once again at GCC.


Tiring?...maybe a little. Enjoyable?...every minute of it.

The opportunity for growth during this time has been limitless...so here are a just a few things I have learned during our time in Oregon…

-For me, home is where your kids and husband are…it’s not a certain city or a specific house.

-Family is a wonderful blessing. Treasure them while you have them. Especially if you have them near.

-Don’t let your worldview get small. (Don’t get so wrapped up in your own challenges that you miss an opportunity to help someone in theirs. I am sure there is someone out there who has it worse than you.)

-Portland isn’t really as rainy as I remember

-I really, really wish that Wenatchee had a Trader Joe’s.

-The Lord truly sustains and upholds us when we completely trust in Him. He does not fail…ever.

-Change is a wonderful catalyst to increase our faith

-God created order for a very good reason and I do a lot better when I have somewhat of a “routine”…

-“Routine” does not necessarily mean “the same thing every day”
(It means that some elements are staples in your life and no matter where you are…they are a part of your day. Don’t wait until you are fully settled to have routine…make it a priority wherever you are.
Time in the Word, prayer, being with family…these things shouldn’t be affected by your “schedule” and shouldn’t go on hold while you “adjust". There will always be something new and your life will always be changing.)

-I don’t need half of the “stuff” I have accumulated in my lifetime…

-Paper plates work just as good as china…and even better, they are unbreakable and disposable.

-My hair behaves a lot better with Portland’s hard water and the moist climate…oh, well.

-Being a part of God’s church, His community, is an amazing blessing.
(It was a joy to experience fellowship with another body of believers there in Portland. And it made me miss the people of our church here…)

-Small living spaces are way easier to clean

-Small towns are really fun to live in…I like it that the bank teller knows my name, the post office woman is friends with my in-laws and my husband waves to an average of 3 people a day while we’re driving around town.

-There can be great joy in reconnecting with old friends…it’s well worth the effort.

-I love being married to my husband…he is a wonderful visionary and gifted leader who brings me along with him on his fabulous adventures.

-Communal living is a blast…sharing meal prep, dinners together every night and memories that will last a lifetime...these are only some of the benefits.

-Big cities are fun to live in…no one knows your name, there are really cool coffee shops on every corner and you can learn 3 new languages while you stand in line at Fred Meyer.

-The Lord has called my husband and I to be here in the Wenatchee Valley…serving these people and living in this community...

...and we call this “home”.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Returning to Washington...

We are officially back on "God's side of the mountains", as my husband so affectionately calls it. We made a "little" move on February 20th, bringing only the essentials...clothes, important papers, cell phones, and my food from Trader Joe's. :o)

We have been settling back into life here in Leavenworth, where we are excited to again be sharing a home with Josh's parents (although I think they feel like they are in an old Cosby show episode where the kids always come back...and they even bring their small children!) :o)

I am excited to share some things I've been learning during these days. In fact, things I've been learning over this past year. What a ride it has been...and what a blast! From April of last year until now...we have enjoyed some of the most wonderful fellowship with family, adventures in moving and growing relationships with friends, old and new.

So as I am unpacking here in Leavenworth, I will also start unpacking some of those wonderful memories to share with you. I think you will enjoy them.

Stay tuned...

P.S. Here's a couple pics of our recent days here in Washington...enjoy.

Puzzles with Nana

Snow in March?

Happy hiker at Aunt Helen's