I had a great week, and I didn't even do anything out of the ordinary, no scuba diving or flying my own plane, no trip to Tahiti.
It was a breath of fresh air!
Just to have a trainride kind of week (much less up and down), not a roller coaster kind of week was oh so sweet. Here are some highlights.
I started the week by going to Bible study, I even got some cardio in while taking continued trips downstairs to break up Micah and Dexter's love hate relationship.
I met with an old friend who has been through more than most could ever imagine, we talked pain, shed some tears and laughed, and the loneliness that has invaded both our lives was a little lighter.
We had family photo's taken this week by Kate, click HERE to see how great she is. Family pics are stressful, although Jake is super great at posing, he'll do whatever you ask (typical man already?) the smile might not be real 90% of the time but at least he sits still right? I had to dance like a monkey to get a real smile from Micah, it worked though, so we all win. And then we took some snow pics, I think at this point i was getting as difficult as the children so we just threw snow, oh i mean they threw snow at me and Kate:) It was an adventure to say the least, but bonding with a friend and getting a sweet Christmas card makes it all worth it.
I am reading two books, "Hinds feet on high places" - interesting and creative allegory and "Crazy Love" by Francis Chan (looove this man as speaker and author), both have spoken so much wisdom into my life, they have really made me step up and take a brave look at how I live everyday.
We took up sledding this week! In portland if you blink the snow will disappear, but here in this little town that is beginning to grow on me the snow is abundant. Thanks to Brad, Mal's bf I have not had to shovel my driveway once (I do pride myself on that).
Ok, Right sledding... we me up with great friends and it does not pay to buy a cheap sled, but it does pay to have the right friends with the right equipment, thank you Shelby and Cory;). Jake loves Cory, he talks about him for hours after we see him, maybe it's the fact that he's a ton of fun and has an answer to everything Jake asks, even if it's outrageously untrue, or maybe it's how Cory goes out of his way to help my kid feel happy, like taking him on a tube, even if it means slamming his leg into a rock, although I'm not sure if he would have signed up for it had he known.... Then we met up with more friends for lunch and imagined what all our 16 kids, yes I said 16 would be like in ten years, we were pretty sure they'd be alot bigger.
Then I went Christmas shopping with Renee and Shawna, we had a great time. Taking 10 minutes at every stores register, getting beeped continuously while leaving one store by an employee who takes her job very seriously (we should have just ran), self check outs who hate us, and almost getting locked in another store did not stop us from getting some good girl time in and checking off our christmas lists.
Sure, i had some bad times, but there were alot of great moments, moments I will treasure in my heart and thank God for as I fall asleep, the good sure trumped the bad.
But I'm not cocky, I have learned, just because life is sailing smoothly it does not mean I can say so long you sucker to my pain; nor does it mean putting God to the side 'for now' until my pain returns. Don't think I am looking at the cup half empty, I need to be real with myself, because I am a "cup half full" kind of person, to the point when things get good and then they crash, my low from that crash can be very intense because I'm so disappointed my "high" didn't stick around, it's like summer camp all over again.
I think God allows us to have these times (half way up the mountain kind of times) that can be a test just as much as he allows us to have weeks down low in the valley (quick explanation: mountain tops are great, sweet, happy times, valley's are hard, sad or painful times and half way up..well i think you can figure that out;).
Will I include God in my life as much as I do when life is a mountain top experience? I want to and I still need to, but what does that look like? Or how will I include all I've learned from my valley days into my mountain days? The verse, "Draw near to God and He will draw near to you" (JAMES 4:8) never ceases to give my soul a jilt. It's true 100% of the time in the valley's and the mountain tops. Just because we're not laden with pain or hurt or frustration does not mean we don't need God as much, if we're thinking like that it probably means we need him more. Some ideas I thought of to draw near to God no matter the day but specifically in the good times... Read the Bible - always something to learn there, God says to "Rejoice Always," that's a big one, praying and thanking God for our blessings with a sincere and passionate heart, praising God - in this we are reminded, it's not about us, it is about Him! And one last one that I pray for myself everyday is, "God please mold me into the woman you desire and mold the events of my days to make me useful," because I have learned his ways are much more beautiful and fruitful than mine. If God just wanted to be there for us when times were hard i'm pretty sure he would have just given us his pager number!
And now I'll go to bed and pray the above, and finish with a short prayer something like, "God please help me to get the sleep that will make me feel refreshed, even though I chose to stay up way to late and blog :)"