I guess I didn't realize that it has been this long since I wrote last. Honestly, so much has been going on that I didn't even think that I could organize my thoughts enough to get them on paper. Life has been a whirlwind lately. It is just moving and it seems to go by faster each and every day.
Over the last few months, I was able to be a part of my new church's launch. I can't even begin to describe how alive I feel in my spirit these days. It has been a lot of hard work alongside some amazing people. To say it has been great would be an understatement. I have seen people in a way that I haven't in a long time. I find myself having a heart for the hurting, the broken-hearted and the sick more than ever before. I have always loved people but I think I was stuck in my own world for a while. I could see people but the path to get to them seemed too hard to travel or it was just my blurred vision. My heart has opened up again. Since all of this, I have had mended relationships. I had to let go of some things and pick up right where the relationship left off. Nonetheless my heart has been able to love the ones I thought were unlovable. I have been able to look past the opinions of others and give people a chance. We often miss the opportunities to meet great people because we let others influence our opinions of those people. Open your heart. Sure you may get let down at times or hurt but I can guarantee that your heart will still beat. And as long as it is still beating then there is love in it ready to be shared with others. When you let God in, He makes it easy for you to pour out His goodness, love and mercy.
I also got to see answered prayer when one of my friends finished chemo and found out that her cancer is gone. I don't know when was the last time I prayed for something so diligently and with such confidence. Through her battle, I was able to see a community come together and friendships become even stronger. Many tears were shed through the journey. At times they were sad tears but like God's word says "though the sorrow may last through the night, joy comes in the morning." I know so many who are dealing with cancer right now. Cancer is an ugly word. But I know what God did for my friend, He would gladly do for anyone. He orchestrated divine appointments and friendships and I am so thankful that I was able to be a part of such a beautiful story. There were touching moments that will forever be embedded in my heart and mind. I am looking forward to many more years with my friend. Don't walk the paths of life alone. Grab someone special and let God show you the way. The journey will be worth it.
One thing that hasn't changed since my last post is that I am still raising two boys who challenge me each day. Bo keeps me smiling and laughing. He has a personality that just leaves an impression on everyone he meets. He is the child who wants to be a part of everything. He is very compassionate and is always thinking of ways to make someone smile. Right now I am battling the splitting of my time. I felt guilty quite often these past few months for leaving Bo at practices so I could go watch Christian's games or go to meetings. And because he has an older brother who is very active, I am always trying to make sure that I acknowledge Bo's accomplishments no matter how big or small. He is the child that gets super excited when he is chosen to be Eagle of the Month or who gets to sing in the choir on Veteran's Day. He wants to make sure Mom and Dad are there to see him. It doesn't matter how many times I hear "God Bless the USA" in a high pitched 9 year old voice, I had better act like I love it like it was my first time hearing it. I pray every day that I am showing him love and that he feels special and affirmed for the talents and gifts that he possesses. You would think since he is the baby that he gets spoiled but sometimes I feel like he gets the shaft. Does any one else ever feel this way?
Things are totally different with Christian. He has kept me on my toes recently. There is so much change that goes on with boys at this age. You have moments when they still rely on you like they did when they were little and then there are times when they open their mouth and you think you are talking to a grown man. He picks on me daily and I have come to accept that this is the way he shows me love. When it comes to him, I constantly have to ask for direction from God. Since he doesn't give me details, I have had to learn when to push and when to back off. If I ask too many questions he shuts down. Then there will be those special times when he opens up and I just have to be silent and soak it all in. I feel like I learn so much from him. He was that baby that cried all of the time and when I look back on those days, I thank the Lord we are at this point in life. Now I am the one crying with each new adventure he takes us on. But with each new step, I have had so many opportunities to say "Man that kid makes me proud!"
Raising boys is more fun than I ever thought it would be. My patience has been taken to new levels. I have learned to not panic. I have learned that they never really grow up and that is perfectly fine. I see my boys laughing and giggling at something only boys would. Just when I want to correct them, I look at my husband and see him laughing and giggling at the same thing. Boys can be gentlemen and they can be respectful. Boys will pick you up just to show you how strong they are. They will laugh at fart noises. They will make anything into some sort of weapon. Boys have a strong bond, kind of like a locker room bond with one another. It is a relation that most of us girls will never truly understand. Boys will call each other names and still come back together. Boys will think your crazy when you break down and cry because you can't put into words just how much you love them. Boys will like girls. And you will learn to care about those girls because you embrace what your boys care about. But isn't that how God is? God cares about what we care about even down to the smallest detail. Boys will make you pray more. You will pray for good friends, good girls, bones to not be broken and a whole lot of other things. Boys will open doors, take out the trash and get something off the top shelf for you. Boys will make you proud to be their momma.
So this is the re-cap of my life over the last few months. I have had to "hide my crazy" a few times. This time has been one of the most hectic seasons in my life. But it has also been a season full of revelation. I am working on being a better Hope. I won't have all the answers. I won't have it all together. I won't have the cleanest house. I won't be the perfect parent. I won't always say the right thing. But, I will be transparent enough to admit my faults and shortcomings. I will learn from my mistakes. I will love my kids and honor my husband. I will tell you that there is hope in any situation. I will spread the love of Jesus!
Blessings to you and yours!