Tuesday November 10, 2009

Somehow the world keeps spinning and everyone keeps moving forward, even when our world has come to a complete halt.
And so we must keep living, too. Sometimes we don’t know how.
It’s hard even to get out of bed in the morning.
It’s hard to put Gabriel to bed at night, for fear that he too might be called to Heaven before I have the chance to say goodbye & I love you — one last time.
It’s hard to button my jeans, for I wonder if they will ever again be too tight.
It’s hard to eat dinner, for wishing I were puking it up.
It’s hard to take pictures because I want the pictures of Peace’s sonogram not to be getting so distant in the past.
It’s hard to know Thanksgiving is coming up, because Glory “ought” to be born then.
It’s hard to get psyched for Christmas holidays when our spirits feel like anything but feasting and rejoicing.
It’s hard to work, it’s hard to eat, it’s hard to love, it’s hard to breathe.

It’s just HARD.

But it happens.
So we spin too.
And we keep on living.

I am making Christmas gifts (I think I’m done actually) — mostly “jar” gifts, as they are my favorite type. I can’t tell you what’s in them, though, for fear someone may read this who is destined to receive one.
I am done Christmas shopping except for a gift for my mama. I know what I want to get her — I just haven’t done it yet. Soon. She’s done so much for us this year, especially over these last seven or eight weeks. I want it to be “just right” to bless her and return just a pinch of the love back to her that she has so generously and abundantly given to me & my family.
Today, specifically, I am making birthday gifts for my grandparents. They will be visiting from California for a few weeks, and their birthdays are soon — we’re having our family party on Sunday. So I made toffee pecans for Grandpa and chocolate truffles for Grandma. Yes, I’ve been licking spoons and snacking on my “messes” all afternoon. It’s my duty. I can share recipes later if you insist.

So, yes, we are living. By God’s grace and through His sustenance. His sovereignty would have it thus.

And today my body is starting to feel more normal. Less like I just delivered a baby. Which is exactly how the last five days have felt. So although that makes me somewhat sad — it makes Peace Nikonos feel that much farther away from me — I am thankful for it. For physical healing. I know people are praying for that for me.

The mourning, grieving, and emotional/spiritual healing is a much longer process.
But God will carry us through that as well.
He always does.

I’ll try to post some pictures soon of what LIFE looks like.
Bless you.

2 Corinthians 12:9-10
[The Lord] said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Saturday November 7, 2009

I do not have the wherewithal to post much new right now.
Like Job, before we can continue with life and pour ourselves into worship, we need to grieve — in Scripture this is described by tearing of garments, covering oneself in ashes, weeping in the square, grieving both privately and corporately, etc… So that’s where we are right now. In deep grief; physically, emotionally, spiritually.
Eventually, yes, the Lord will pull us through the grief and into life & worship.
He always provides.
Our mourning is not inconsistent with the Scriptures or with God’s character. It is part of the process.
So please mourn with us and be patient with us, as we appropriately grieve the death of our child.

Remember the etiquette (“regulating social behavior”, which is loving your neighbor) post, not just for me — but for you, your future, your family, your friends. We are not the only family enduring the death of children.
Remember our cries to God for His mercy, and join us in praying for future grace.
Remember our great love for this fifth arrow in our family, our precious Peace Nikonos.
Remember that there are great resources, both Christian and secular, for dealing with the death of children.
Remember that grief is a process; it takes time, it takes mourning.

Remember the broken hearts, remember the crushed dreams, remember the olive plants who are not sitting around our table, remember the parents & grandparents whose arms are empty, remember the process of grief — and pray to God for mercy upon yourself, your family, your future — and, if you would be so kind, for us & ours as well.

We know that our family belongs to Him.
And we trust Him to lead us through this valley of the shadow of death in His perfect timing.
And we pray for His grace to someday, by His enabling power, fill our home with the pitter-patter of many tiny feet, cries in the nighttime, and laughter in the day.

Thank you for being with us through these trials.
It is so much easier to rejoice with those who rejoice —
but we thank God for you, and your willingness to weep with those who weep.
May God return to you double for your kindnesses.

Friday October 16, 2009

Charlotte, you tagged me! And what do ya know, it’s my first tag, too. 🙂 Pretty crazy!

Charlotte has a lovely blog about her family, and I love seeing pictures and reading stories about them and their homeschooling efforts. I have known Charlotte since before I can even remember, since we grew up in the same church. I think one of my favorite things about her when I was little was when she worked at my dad’s office, and I would love seeing her smiling face and getting a hug from her when I’d stop by to see my daddy. 🙂
So anyway, here I am — obliging with my answers to the survey about my sweet husby & me. 🙂

What are your middle names?

Timothy & Joy
♥How long have you been together?
We’ve known each other for 3 years
Had a long-distance relationship 4 months
Short-distance relationship 1 month
Engaged 3 1/2 months
Married 2 1/2 years… so far!! 🙂

♥ How long did you know each other before you started dating?
Oh, umm, that’s really a trick question for us.
We met online on a reformed singles website… so it wasn’t exactly dating…
and it wasn’t exactly official for a while, but it was always with “that” intention…
so I don’t know. 🙂
Let’s just say like two months. 🙂 Except I think it was more like one month!

♥ Who asked who out?
My dad asked him out. Haha! lol. Just kidding.
No seriously. Dad wrote to him. He wrote to Dad.
Then I wrote to him. He wrote to me.
Over and over and over and over and over…
Until he came to visit.
Then he asked me out.
Over and over and over and over and over…

♥ Who made the first move?
Well, let’s see, he moved across the country for me. 🙂
That counts, right? 😉
He said “I love you” first.
He made the first effort to hold my hand right after he proposed.
Our first kiss, later on, was kind of a mutual thing — simultaneous, you could say. 🙂

♥ How old are each of you?
wifey is 25
husby is practically 27

♥ Did you go to the same school?

♥ Are you from the same home town?
Haha, we are now!

♥ Who is the smartest?

He is more intelligent.
But I am more detailed.

♥ Who majored in what?
wifey- music and liberal arts
husby- religious studies and biblical christology
♥ Who is the most sensitive?

Isn’t that obvious?
The always-hormonal wife. 🙂

♥ Where do you eat out most as a couple?
Starbucks. 🙂 Or McDonald’s! Not even kidding.
♥ Where is the furthest you two have traveled together as a couple?

Umm… to the Mediterannean (but that was accompanied by extended family).
Alone… to North Carolina.

♥ Who has the worst temper?
Neither one of us has much of a temper.
Go ahead with the redhead jokes.
We prove them wrong. 🙂
♥ How many children do you want?
We’re working on our fifth. 🙂
♥ Who does the cooking?

Me, oh pick me! 🙂 I love being mistress of the kitchen.
But on Valentine’s Day, I hand over the apron.
And he always makes a delectable feast.

♥ Who is more social?

Not really sure. We are about equal.
For the most part, we love small gatherings.
Double date type things.
Mostly we sincerely love just being home and being together as a family.
Not that we don’t love parish fellowship nights or parties. Cuz we do. 🙂

♥ Who is the neat-freak?

That’d be me.
I let him have his study to himself.
I don’t tidy it, clean it, or anything.
The rest of the house is definitely neat-freak-maintained.
It’s been a lifelong habit, and so far I haven’t let it go. 🙂

♥ Who is the most stubborn?

We prefer to think of ourselves as staunch and committed. 😉

♥ Who wakes up earlier?
Husby’s alarm always goes off first.
But lately I’ve been lying there awake before that even happens.

♥ Where was your first date?

Depends on what you mean by “date.”
The first time he bought me something was in a resort town by a lake 1 hour east of our hometown.
It was a sweet little independent coffee shop.
The type that serves free trade coffee.
We sat on bar stools by the windows, drinking coffee, people watching, and talking for almost four hours.
<<<happy sigh>>>
I think the first time we went out for dinner alone was downtown at a bistro type place
the night he proposed to me.

♥ Who has the bigger family?

Same size immediate family.
I have more extended family.

♥ Do you get flowers often?

Define “often.”
He loves to bring me flowers for “no reason” every so often.
Most frequently roses. 🙂

♥ How do you spend the holidays?

Since his family lives 3000 miles away, we are usually with my family for at least part of each holiday.
We love the family traditions of Thanksgiving and Christmas especially.
We do lots of reading and feasting and singing and smiling.
We have candles and music and crackling fires.
And snow. Oh we love the snow!

♥ Who is more jealous?

We’ve never been jealous of one another.
We don’t have to be.

♥ How long did it take to get serious?

Well let’s see… not long. 😉

♥ Who eats more?

Usually the husby.
But not always. 🙂

♥ What do you do for a living?
wifey- mistress of the domain, helpmeet, devoted mommy
husby- family head, loving daddy, adoring husband, computer guru at a Bible software company
♥ Who does the laundry?
Definitely me.
♥ Who’s better with the computer?
Hah! That’s another no-brainer.
He’s a computer guru, remember? 🙂

♥ Who drives when you are together?
Husby does 99.8% of the time.
♥ What is “your” song?
At our wedding it was “Love Like Ours” by Steve Tyrell.
But our family song since then has been “God Moves in a Mysterious Way” by William Cowper

Meggan, Krista, and Laura. 🙂

Saturday October 10, 2009

When it comes to honoring our parents as adults, a lot of times people shrug it off thinking “I’m too old for that stuff nowYou know, obeying and honoring my folks.” I’m “of age” or married or whatever. Therefore, I don’t need that commandment anymore.
But, umm, excuse me, yes you do. The commandment does not go away. No matter how old you are. Or how old your parents are. It simply looks a little different than it used to. Maybe honoring your parents no longer means piping out “yes ma’am” when she asks you to take out the garbage — or maybe it does! Maybe it doesn’t mean that you still have a curfew — or maybe it should. Perhaps it no longer implies that you have to call every time you arrive at a destination — or perhaps it would be truly honoring your mother if you continued to do that. Maybe it means calling them, loving them, worshiping with them, eating meals together frequently, having them live in your home, mowing their grass every week, doing the housecleaning, driving them to appointments, bringing them to Bible study — I don’t know. Each family is different. And of course familial honor will look a little different from family to family. It’s in your conversation, in your actions, and in your heart.
The point is honoring your parents according to God’s revealed wisdom for you and your family. Yes, it does change with your age, their age, living situations, marriage status… of course it must.
But still honor your parents.
It is a biblical command.
And it is beautiful.

So for those with especially aging parents, Mrs. Wilson has an excellent new post — please check it out and consider how you may “first learn piety at home” and honor your parents of the older age. What a wonderful reminder!