Monday, November 22, 2010

I know your voice.....

Kade has a distinct voice. Well, to Michael and I, he does. I'm sure that every parent could probably pick their own child's voice out of a crowd. We memorize the cadences and tones in their voices.

When Kade is in the nursery at church and Michael and I are in Sunday School, we can tell when he is the one crying. As soon as we hear that familiar cry, one of us is running out to door to get him. During church, he sometimes sits with his grandparents several rows back. He babbles a LOT, and we can always recognize his "Dabadaphtasdbhgsedadada!" above all the other babies (and there are several!)

Did you know that your voice is familiar to God? He can pick out the sound of your voice, crying out to Him, above the roar and babble of everyone else.

I've heard people say before--"Well, how could God hear my prayer when everyone else is praying at the same time?! What makes my prayer stand out among the roar of all the others?!"

You are God's child. He recognizes your voice. It's familiar to Him. Even if one million other people are praying at the same time as you, He hears your distinct, special voice. He also hears the voice of His child across the street and the voice of His child across the world. The awesome thing about God is that, even though all of His children may be calling out to Him at the same time, He can hear each one of them separately and distinctly. Each request, each thanksgiving, andeach sorrow gets His special attention. Even if we, as humans, recognize our children's voices, we can only listen to and comprehend them one at a time. Not God. He has supernatural ears.

When Kade calls out to me, I recognize his voice, and I come to his rescue!
When I cry out to God, he recognizes my voice and He comes to my rescue!

How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! John 1:31 NIV

Saturday, November 20, 2010

O, be careful little eyes what you see....

Kade is 15 months old and the new things it seems like he does everyday amaze me.
One day this week, he started slapping his knees and laughing because I had done it while talking to someone on the phone.
We do little hand gestures while we read his bedtime book and he has started doing them along with us.
He's had a runny nose for several weeks and has started trying to wipe his nose himself and in the last couple of days has even attempted to BLOW his nose!
He puts his hands together and squinches his eyes shut when we say, "Let's pray."

I mean, just crazy stuff! As his mother, of course, all these things fill me with pride and reassure me that I have the smartest, sweetest, cutest kid in the world.

I think all parents would admit that there are things they don't want their children to do. We monitor what they see and hear--especially from movies, TV, and even other people in our lives. We try to keep them from the wrong things and expose them to the right things (whatever your "wrong" and "right" is). Especially when they're little.

Sometimes, what we don't realize is that while they're young, WE are the biggest influences in their lives.

When I get aggravated, I growl. Not like a dog growl, but just a frustrated growl. You probably know what I mean.
Anyway, Kade a month or so ago, Kade started growling a lot.
I was confused, but Michael reminded me that I make the same sound when I'm frustrated. He was right.

See, I never thought about Kade picking up on things that I do wrong. I try to read him the right books and sing the right songs and pray the right prayers, but I didn't even consider that he would imitate my "bad" behavior.

We're worried about what our children see and hear from others, but sometimes not so worried about what they hear from us, their parents, in own own house. It's as if (and I'm speaking for myself here) we think we're immune to the standards we've set for our children to live by.

I've been trying to be more patient lately. I don't want Kade to see my outward frustration all the time--especially at the stupid things that don't really deserve any frustration. I want to teach him to be patient and to deal with annoying things in a healthy way. I want to model that in front of him--not just tell him how he should do it and then turn around and slam cupboard doors and bang pots and pans and kick furniture when I'm upset, myself.

The parenting series we're going through right now says that "Behavior is caught and not taught" and that rings so true with me. It's great to tell your children how to live, but walk that walk in front of them and they'll be 100 times more likely to be who you hope they'll be.

Friday, November 19, 2010

FALL'ing in Love

So, I'll get off of my soapbox for awhile and talk about my babe.

Ok, yeah, I know the title is pretty corny, but I couldn't think of a better way to show this photo of my boy (taken by my pretty awesome sister).

Oh, and this one, too, because I like it so much.

And this one, because my boy has pretty awesome hair.

And this one is precious to me because he had just started walking.

And this one, because he's just so darn cute!

I fall in love with this boy over and over again, everyday.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Offense, Defense, Political correctness (hey, it kind of rhymes!)

**Disclaimer: Before I get flamed, I do believe that there is a time and a place for political correctness.**

I've been thinking about the truth and being offensive and defensive and things like that lately, and thought I'd look up a list of politically correct terms. Some of these were funny!

What do you think?

Taken from
Bald=comb-free (Pastor Ken, are you reading this?!)
Bald=follicularly challenged
Body odor=nondiscretionary fragrance
Cannibalism=intra-species dining
Clumsy=uniquely coordinated
Cowardly=challenge challenged
Dishonest=ethically disoriented
Lazy=motivationally deficient
Redneck=rustically inclined
Roadkill=vehicularly compressed maladapted life form
Rudeness=tact avoidance

On a personal level, as a shorter person, I prefer to be called vertically challenged. Because "short" is just...well...offensive. At 5'2", I am short, but vertically challenged sounds so much better.

The truth is kind of offensive, sometimes, isn't it? It's definitely not always comfortable--sometimes, it's because you're still repressing the truth in your heart and sometimes, it's because you already know the truth, but it hurts to hear it. Feeling comfortable is....comfortable, but it doesn't challenge you to think or change. Sometimes, we need to hear the truth, as much as it may make us frown or squirm. A friend recently told me that she has always heard "If you don't leave the sermon feeling offended, it wasn't a good sermon" and I tend to agree. Warm, fuzzy feelings are nice, but that's it. They don't make you wiser or challenge you.

We live in a world that does a ridiculously eggshell-walking dance around everyone and everything (remember my disclaimer: some things do need extra respect given to them) in an attempt to placate the masses. It goes right along with the awesome sense of entitlement that everyone seems to have. Sometimes, though, it's like putting lipstick on a pig. Say what you want, pretty it up a bit, but it's still a pig. If someone did that to me, I would feel like they were patronizing me. I'd rather hear the truth any day, even if I get my feelings hurt.

Jesus--He didn't sugarcoat things. He put things bluntly. He told it like it was. The funny thing is that man (oh, I mean "humankind") has taken His words and tried to make everyone happy and comfortable.

Oh no, when He said that He didn't really mean that. What he really meant was......

And then there's everyone's favorite verse: "Love your neighbor as yourself," because of course that cancels out any other kind of commandment.

Well, that's ok if he/she did that because God said to love them.

Real love is saying, "Hey, I love you, but I've got to tell you the truth, even if it hurts your feelings."

Real love is saying, "Hey, I love you, and I've got to tell you--you're going down the wrong path."

In the end, real love always tells the truth Sometimes, it might step on your toes. Sometimes, it might "get all up in your grill." Much of the time, it may make you feel uncomfortable and defensive.

But that's ok, because real love cares enough to tell you the truth.

**The voice of Truth tells me a different story.**