Friday, December 23, 2011


Eleven years ago, on a night so cold that I put on an extra pair of my boyfriend's pants over my own to keep warm, we walked along the canal and stopped for a kiss on the top of this bridge.

Then he asked me to marry him, and pulled a ring from his pocket. I'm one lucky girl.

Monday, December 19, 2011

What Matters

It doesn't matter
that my floor is cluttered,
or that there is laundry to be folded
and put away.

What matters is God
is always,
has always been,
and forever will be

It doesn't matter 
that yesterday was full 
of mistakes and 
shortcomings and

What matters is God
reminds me to seek him,
redeems me from the pit,
forgives my sin,
and gives me new mercies
every morning.

 Today I want
And by his grace
the desire of my heart
and the joy of my life
to be found in him.

Thursday, December 15, 2011


Conversations are interesting things when little ones are about. Today while talking to our doctor's billing office, I found myself saying, "We don't step on cats, Hope. That's not nice." The giggle on the other end reminded me I had listening ears.

Also today while Hope was making some very unladylike noises, I asked, "Hope are you a lady?"
"No," she said. "I'm a girl."
Not to be deterred, I rephrased, "Are you a girl?"
"Girls grow up to be ladies."
Trying to change the subject she pointed at her dad, "And he's a man." Hope said.
"Yes," I replied, "but you are going to be a lady. And ladies should not make tooting noises with their mouths."

Another long interruption where she tells me who in our house is going to be a man and who is going to be a lady. Then we look down to see that Breeley has emptied a tub of crayons on the floor.

"And look at the mess the little lady made." Hope said.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Red Stains

Today we practiced for our church's Christmas program. Like last year, we practiced in the sanctuary on the "regular stage" for a several weeks. Then the church undergoes a dramatic transformation when they build the set into our sanctuary. Really, it's quite amazing that they do what they do. I love watching it come together.  Each year they gather the set that was broken down the year before and move it in and put it together like one giant 3-d jigsaw puzzle. Although it has minor changes year to year the main structure stays the same.

We practiced on the set for only the second time today.  As I stood behind a curtain waiting for my cue I was looking over the set. Taking time to notice a few details I don't normally pay attention to. On the back of a wall someone had written LCT 2000 - AWESOME. It made me smile to think of the people who wrote that. The story is just that: awesome.

Some days I get bogged down by the struggle to learn a dance, remember a cue, get all my kids their costumes and get them into them. Some days of practice are great community builders. Some are just gotten through. Some days, I forget that it's an honor to be a part of retelling this Story. This tremendous Story.

This last week was one of those weeks.  Doug and I are both just worn out, burnt out. We're ready to be done. And it was with a rather rotten attitude I headed to practice today: the first of 9 practices and performances in 8 days. Getting cranky kids in costume. My body hurting from past weeks of dance practice. My emotions torn between my commitment to the show and my baby who was teething and wanted Mama.

All this was on my mind as I stood looking at the scenery. It is beautiful. Our set designer and builder does a great job, but that wasn't what caught my eye.

What caught my eye was the red stain on the floor. Over the years the red make-up from the back of the man who plays Jesus has soaked into the stage.  I was entering to dance where the cross would soon stand.

In that moment, I experienced a rush of gratitude, humbleness and meekness.  My feet would dance where the red stains from make-up had fallen on the stage. The truth is my feet dance everyday because of the blood shed and grace of Jesus Christ. My hope, my joy, my peace are the gift of a red stained road He walked for me.

I am so grateful for the red stains on a plywood floor today. Tomorrow will be another long day of practice. My baby will still be teething, my four kids will probably all lose something and need me to find it in a rush, I will still be tired, but I will be dancing with a refreshed sense of joy, humbleness and gratitude on red stained floors.