Sunday Morning Madness

The faint melody of my alarm clock slowly brings me out of my glorious rem cycle, letting me know a new day has arrived. If I recall, my clock read 11:44pm as I finally drifted off to sleep last night, warranting a few more “snoozes” than usual before my feet actually hit the floor.

Sunday morning.

I make my way to the kitchen, flick the coffee pot on, pour a cup, and cozy up on the couch for a few minutes of quiet before the beautiful chaos of our get-to-church-on-time routine.

{The very fact that it is Sunday means every detail possible will work against our effort to actually get out the door on time.}

Now it is Lucy’s turn to slowly moan her way out of her glorious rem cycle until her moaning becomes “MAMAMAMA!”

The day begins.

I open the door to her room and see her happy little morning self. I’m reminded to savor these small, in-between moments.

{Breathe it in. Before the commotion of the next 45 minutes, take this moment in. Don’t miss it.}

Scrambling eggs to the chorus of crying because Lucy is suddenly convinced that she is starving to death. Slicing oranges into tiny, non-chokable-sized bites as fast as I possibly can. Before I can get her food on her tray, the now hangry (yes, hangry) cry quickly becomes: “Rldrldrldrldrldrld!!!” {MILK PLEASE}

All at once.

{25 minutes to go time. Oh, and I’m still in my pjs.}

Brush my teeth. Deodorant. Makeup. Clothes. Hair (Kind of).

{Negative 5 minutes to go time.}

Lucy’s sticky face. Poopy Diaper. Her church clothes that I forgot to lay out last night. Grab her beanie because there’s no time to rummage through her bows.

Nate grabs Lucy, I grab the diaper bag, and we are finally out the door.

~Sunday morning, ya’ll~

Just as we pull into the church parking lot, I realize I somehow forgot to eat breakfast. Nate parks while I grab a muffin from a nearby cafe and we both barely make it inside just in time for worship to start.

The worship team invites us all to stand as we worship Jesus together this morning.

I close my eyes, my sweet husband standing next to me holding little Lucy girl in his arms, the quiet hum of my fellow brothers and sisters singing along with me.. This is grace.

I am blessed.

{Another small, beautiful moment – breathe it in.}

We sit down and the sermon begins. Ten minutes in, and Lucy’s already bored with every item in her diaper bag. Here we go.

I look to my left and I see another mama also telling her little girl, Lucy’s age, not to make loud, spitty noises with her tongue.

Then there’s the embarrassed mama in the balcony who, in trying to entertain her toddler, accidentally flings several napkins down onto the ground-level folks.

It is here where I am overwhelmed with the gracious reminder that I am not alone. None of us are. We are all in this together – this beautifully messy Sunday morning routine. This routine where we gather from all different backgrounds to remind each other why we endure the day-to-day grind that is life. It is here where we remember how worth it it all is.

Remember today that it’s worth it. You were made for this.

Your heart is what Jesus is after. Never give into the temptation of believing that perfection is the end goal. You will be terribly disappointed and robbed of so much joy along the way.

Instead, embrace it – all of it. None of your shortcomings are too much to entrust to Jesus.

May your trust in his constant presence empower you to press on, facing each day {including Sunday mornings} with confidence.

Your strength is not your own, but that which flows from the perfect, forgiving, unconditional love of Jesus.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All the Colors of Fall

fall-3Orange, yellow, brown, green – sometimes all at once.

The leaves – oh, the leaves.

Pumpkins.

Cinnamon Sticks.

Squash of all kinds and colors: butternut, acorn, pumpkin.

Cider, coffee, tea.. any warm beverage, really.

Yummy, autumn-scented candles.

Blustery, rainy days spent cozied up inside.

Sunny days that bring all of the beautiful colors of fall to life.fall-2

Or both at once. Cause it’s fall, and “inconsistency” is fall’s weather forecast.

Good books.

Crafts & projects.

Baking.

Anything and everything pumpkin: bread, pie, soup, coffee {Yes.. coffee gets counted again. Because I’m that excited about my new Pumpkin Spice blend I’ve recently discovered.}

Ah, yes, and soup. {Yep, soup gets counted again too. Just cause.. well, it’s soup.} The comforting warmth of soup on a chilly, fall day. I’ve recently spent more hours than I’m willing to admit on Pinterest stalking up on my soup recipes for the coming months.

And finally, running in the rain.

{This is one I dreaded until I tried it. But sometimes, what makes us stronger is facing the very things that we dread. There is something truly healing about being bold and fearless and running into the storm with full confidence. About the rush of physically pushing yourself beyond what you think you are capable of. It’s a powerful image of real life, and how approaching the inevitable obstacles and challenges of life are much like approaching a long run in the pouring-down-rain. It seems impossible and not fun in the least, at times. But coming out on the other side stronger than if you’d never tried at all – that’s not something you regret. Not to mention all of the beauty along the way that you don’t see if you choose not to run at all.}

Yes, sometimes we need to get drenched in the rain.

fall-4

Fall. So much to love.

But my ultimate love for fall is that it embodies the beauty of each season in one. Both literally and figuratively, seasons exist in life. We need them all for the world to keep spinning. Each of them gives some sort of unique touch to the fullness of the human experience. Some seasons are harder, while others seem easier. But it is when we learn to be content in the One who created the seasons that we find beauty in each one, regardless of what they bring.

 

Laying Down Perfection

“You have said, ‘Seek my face.’ My heart says to you, ‘Your face, LORD, do I seek.’ ” -Psalm 27:8

The simplicity of this verse stills my soul. All of my lofty goals and ambitions are suddenly laid to rest.

“Seek my face.”

All you desire is for me to seek your face.

To dwell with you.

Here.

Now.

You desire my honesty. My raw self.

It is here where I am able to find real life. Where I find my worth. Where I find what determines my joy, my peace. Where striving ceases and your restful yoke of grace and strength for this present hour is placed on my shoulders.

Yes, Lord. You desire me – the “now” me.

Because the “now” me is where you find the hungriest version of me. The me who doesn’t have the answers and is so desperate for you that all pretenses and obstacles in your way of getting through to me are torn down.

This is real purity – because this is where I understand what it really means to hunger and thirst for righteousness. After all, that is what you’ve called me to do – it is all you’ve called me to do. You say it is when I hunger and thirst for you that I will inherit your kingdom and live with you forever. And I cannot hunger and thirst for you if my soul is quenched with my own false idea of achievement and success.

So, for now and for always, “Your face, LORD, do I seek.”

I will hunger.

I will thirst.

I will choose to set my face towards yours and find my rest.