Mommy, Concentrated

Jesus Centered Family Focused

Puppy Love

He chews on anything he can sink his sharp little teeth into—stuffed animals, my leather sandals, socks—except his own toys and rawhides. Three times a day we toss his mat into his crate. Three times a day he drags it back into the den. Every now and then he still has an accident if we don’t get him outside in time. He can’t bathe himself, pay for his own food, or ring that handy bell we hung beside the door. He definitely takes time, energy, and money that I don’t have—and I…adore…him. It’s inexplicable. But what’s even more amazing is how unfailingly happy he is to see us, the people who lock him up for hours, feed him the same food every meal every day, and who force him to pee in the rain. My little people don’t recognize their mama who’s become this dog-loving person—this Oscar-loving person—who greets her “baby” before saying hello to anyone else in the house. My sweet sister gave him to me, but only God could know that smelling his little corn-chip-scented feet and watching him hop like a bunny after his ball would lift my spirits at the end of a long day. Leave it to my Father to anticipate such a need, and meet it with a four-legged solution. “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, who whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.” James 1:17...

Our Bugs’ Life

When our repairman asked, “How many kids do you have?” I told him twenty—that’s how it felt that day. I guess that’s how it looked, too, because he responded, “Your family is like an ant colony. You know, when you see an anthill from afar you see chaos, lots of scurrying around.” An ant? Did he just call my little people ants? But he may be onto something. More and more I find we’re “scurrying around,” running from one activity to the next, checking off one task after another, lugging around larger-than-(my) life responsibility, biting anybody who tramples on our hill. It’s not chaotic necessarily, for all our activity has a purpose, much as life in the anthill. But it often feels like mostly work and little play. Perhaps I should be more like the butterfly, gracefully flitting from one of my little “flowers” to another, enjoying the beauty of the life God has provided. And what about the queen bee—busy, but focusing on just one task while God sees to my every need? Hmmm…the ant. I guess it beats being a black widow spider. “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matthew...

Words Unspoken

When I told M&M he had to apologize for hitting his friend he calmly explained, “But I don’t know how to talk.” Um, yes, that got the side-eye. Needless to say, he found the words he was looking for. Actually, M&M and I have a lot in common. For instance, I struggle when I’m trying to explain heavy topics like why people hurt others, or why we change the channel during certain commercials, or what it means in Genesis to “know carnally.” I’ve had trouble putting my thoughts on paper, telling Hubby he’s wearing “dad jeans,” responding to a friend without seeming confrontational, or even voicing my needs to God. My grandma summed it up when she sang, “When I can’t say a word…I’ll just wave my hand.” God puts it best when He said, “Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.” Romans...


Remember counting down to the big day when you were a kid? Well, that’s what we’re doing over here, and we’re down to ten days—ten days until the Crusader arrives home for Thanksgiving break. Maven has been planning out his favorite breakfast (fried chicken and waffles), dinner (barbecue chicken pizza), and dessert (Heavenly Cake). Think Tank can’t wait to play PlayStation with him. Hubby anticipates catching up on what’s happening in the world of folks younger than 20. I’m looking forward to trying out my new zip strips attaching his wrists to mine. But remember how Dorothy felt watching the hourglass empty? Well, that’s Songbird. She adores her brother, but the Crusader’s arrival marks the day she returns the pillows she borrowed from his bed, the hoodies she lifted from his closet, and the “oldest kid mantle” she borrowed from his unsuspecting shoulders. All this prep, anticipation, joy, hope, trepidation… I pray our hearts are just as eager and ready for Jesus’ return! Are you praying for it or fearing it? “…so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation.” Hebrews...

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