Am I just crazy to say that this was by far the most amazing holiday I have ever had? Now, let me start by confessing that there were tears, lots of tears.....tears with thoughts of what I would be doing had I been 32 weeks pregnant with twin boys . Its been a hard long year on many fronts. Not, just the loss of our babies, there have been other things. Things that rock you to the core. But, ever then HE has been there. There in the dark, there in the moments when your not sure what to do next. There when you think you have just made too many mistakes and sinned too much to ever be forgiven. He does...He takes it all and I have found that not only does He take it all, He is mindful of our heart, mindful of how we are doing day to day hour to hour. I know because after the kids opened their gifts and my man was laying around watching Christmas Vacation for the one thousandth time. I was alone in my room on a heap of pillows crying my eyes out. We had had the perfect morning....what else could you want than a crackling fire, two big brown eyed babies coming down the stairs checking out the cookie plate they left for Santa only to see the pile under the tree?...oh then the shrills of delight when you see your little ones light up when they "finally" got the American doll she had been wanting for so long. There is just not much to be sad about. But, I was sad. Very sad. I was thinking about how much I wanted those babies, how much I was hoping I would have been cleaning up the infant carrier preparing to deliver them instead of cleaning the loads of dishes. But, then even through the tears in my white fluffy bed I hear Him, I felt Him. It was if I was being scooped up once again into the lap of my Abba Father,the only man who could really meet all my needs and He did not need a full stocking to prove it. At that moment He met me, He showed me once again as He always does that He is true to His word. I loved it. I stood by it in those moments. I continued to choose His oil of joy instead of mourning. I remembered that He is still for Me. I can look back at this year and say, as hard as it has been that there has never been a year with more fruit in my life. I owe Him all glory and honor for that one. I could have NEVER been apart of such life giving, grace enjoying moments without Him.
Friends, your are reading a woman who will never ever ever ever be the same again. Eternity seems so much closer to me this year, life seem so much more fragile, my earthly babies seem more important to me than ever before (they are the ONLY things I get to take to heaven, better make it count). Its a year that will go down in history one I hope I won't forget. Although 2012 is here I am still living in the absolute grace of Jesus. I am still being carried, I am still human and wreck my own life sometimes and always will. But, then again I would not need Him if I could do it all by myself. There has never been a day when I need more grace, more of His power evident in my life. I am thrilled to be on this journey. I am thankful He choose me to be the mommy to two babies that I will not hold on January 20th. He knew, He knew He would carry me, He knew I would make His name renown with all my heart. He knew I would not shake my fist at Him. He knew that I have always had a pure heart and would love Him no matter what. I can tell you just as His word says that the pure in heart do see God. I have seen Him more than ever these past few days and weeks and I want more.
More of His goodness....
More of His power....
More of His grace....
More of His love...
More of His forgiveness...
More of His redemption...
Just all I can get and more.
I don't deserve it, but He loves me and He loves YOU too...
I don't understand the depth of that love but, I'll take it, do you want to join me?...
2012 will be a year that goes down in the books, I just know it. After His goodness to me this year and maybe you too what possibly could be next? Good or bad He has us in the palm of His hands.
This year I choose His power. No small living, gossip feeding, insecure living for me....only large territory, authentic relationships and genuine living for will do!
Until we get a glimpse of the Almighty's face, for which I can not wait...we must live loud, full and deep. I am asking God to get me out of my comfort zone in relationships, asking Him to let me be more of Jesus to those who needs His grace. I had a friend tell me the other day that she was having an issue with a friend that had no filter, she said God spoke to her and said, "you have no grace filter". I loved that.
Let's be REAL this year, lets quite worrying about what others think and pray for someone even if in public when you know you are supposed to. Lets ask someone for forgiveness or investigate a friendship that seems to have been lost or off track. Lets be mindful of those that may be hurting, take the extra time to send a card, make a meal or call just to check in. Lord knows I have had my fair share this year from so many that love me and have a "call back, thank you writing list" a mile long I am still working on (hence why I did not have time to do a Christmas Card this year) That was huge to me. I always delighted in showing my beautiful family off every single year. This season you may not have gotten a card. You just got me in all my rawness. A woman whose pain of loosing two babies and watching the hand of God sweep mercy all over her beautiful family is what you got this year.
A GIFT I WOULD TAKE ANY DAY OVER A CARD THAT ENDS UP BEING COMPARED TO OTHERS THEN IN THE GARBAGE JANUARY 1.
Seventeen days after I had my babies my friend Jenny asked me if I wanted to get out of the house for a bit, it was my first day out in public since my loss. Jenny was pregnant with her third baby was so gentle with me. It was so wonderful to get out, be with a good girl who loves her babies, loves to decorate like you do and just be normal. I had been in the depths. I needed this day. We started off at a place that sells neat Christmas ornaments, I found some that stopped me in my tracks and caused tears to well in eyes, they were in the shape of crosses and they had one word names on them they said:
I bought one of each. For the first time in my life I knew what EVERY single one of those names meant. I knew it with all that was within me. It was the theme of my holiday, as I lay in a pile of pillows and cry out for His grace He once again shows me His healing....His comfort...His redemption...
I pray every day I will embrace those names....
2012 no small living for me will do. I try so hard not to judge but its always been so hard for me to understand people who are alright with the status quo. I get CRAZY and fleshly about it. We only live once. We only get one chance to make our mark. Do it. No matter what season of life you are in...if your in my season, the dish wash emptying, diaper changing endless laundry sort of season you still can, it just may look more like praying with a friend over coffee with toddlers under your feet or mobilizing efforts to help a friend get ready to get a baby from Africa. We may not be able or called to be a Beth Moore type on a stage with millions watching and listening.....but, we each have a ministry designed just for us. Pursue it, ask God to show you what yours looks like.
I want to leave you with the one single verse I have been living by, its a known one, but a ever true one for me and maybe you this year:
"I pray that our of His glorious riches He may strengthen you with His power, through His spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Saints, to grasp how wide and long and high is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled, to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to Him who is able to exceedingly more than we can ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus, throughout all generations, forever and ever, AMEN!"
Now for a little peak into my holiday with entailed 176 people in my house starting December 9th!! Madness and I loved it!!!!
A fun night out on the town with fun girls!
Atlanta High Tea with Santa......at this gorgeous hotel my little angel boy derailed a massive toy train....they literally called "engineering" in to fix it.....the joy...the horror....but He's my boy and His father's son....they high activity was inherited and not His fault!
The love of a man who was given to me by a God who knew exactly what I needed in a husband.
Sissy F the kissy one is for you I know how you LOVE PDA ;)
Day one of Christmas Clothes
Trimming the tree
Caroline's first race which she did amazing at....came in 3rd (the only girl to race)
fun women at a very fun Christmas party
Tis the season to be married to the amazing man!
Magical Christmas at a night time play date
nothing better than a homemade ornament from a little one
eat him up in a jon jon and cowboy boots...part his mama and part his daddy
Gingerbread Play date hosted by my babies and I
one of the many Santa's we met this year....This one was a big one!
nothing more I like than pure chaos and fun...children everywhere having a ball
Caroline's 4k class party
UGLY sweater party at our house equal SO MUCH FUN.
Cookie exchange with the girls
Bight eyes at the Polar Express train ride
the real "reason for the season"
Mr. Lonnie...our favorite bellman in Atlanta
Where has the time gone, such a little lady at her high tea with Santa.......Have I mentioned I LOVE having a little girl
A December morning in a hotel in a big city.....oh the wonder.....
J and His mini me
I love this age
a little shy of Santa....but she did mention to tell Him she wanted an American Doll!
My beautiful Niece and Nephew Sammy....
love the glow of Christmas
Christmas Eve festivities