I want to remember these days. In our cozy nook on a seemingly quiet street. It’s not always so quiet. When I found you existed in our small bathroom and I immediately thanked Jesus a thousand times. The way a bad day is still beautiful because you give me hope. The hot summer days we took our dogs for a walk, then sat in the backyard, my belly bare and daddy in his boxers, hose in between our feet blasting on mist to cool down. I want to remember the way you kick when your daddy prays, when I sing a song to the Father, and when our favorite Pastor preaches at church. The times we aren’t sure how we’ll make it, but we always do. Standing in front of the mirror, breaking down to tears over everything and nothing. Your daddies arms are the hero and wrap me in from behind, reminding me that everything is well. You are weaving in my womb, and so all is well. And I want to remember to always ask Father, to never let us despise these days of small beginnings. One day we’ll look back and laugh at these days, cry for these days back. Oh sweet love, these are the days I want to always remember. The beginnings of you.
It’s been a while. A year ago a few spiritual leaders had given me almost the same word, at different times, in different states. That I am strong. I have a voice. I shouldn’t be afraid to say the words in my heart. But I had hurt in my heart from the unfulfilled. Maybe I had been walking that out. Maybe I had been trying to release the things I thought should be mine in my time and maybe I’d been trying to do it in my own power.
I don’t know what changed in my heart. I don’t know if it was the pastor in the old church that asked me to trust Jesus, just for a year, or the never ending forgiveness and love in my husbands eyes. I don’t know if it was a mix of it all. But somewhere in between, I learned to exhale the dirt and inhale His promise. Hang on to things that matter and let go of things that don’t. Things that we worry too much about and things that we neglect. So I’ve been throwing things away. Clutter, clothes, useless feelings, things I’ve let make home in my mind for too long. I’ve been reading Ecclesiastes. I’ve been breathing in fresh air and exhaling all of the smoke. Been saying words out loud instead of stuffing them deep into a journal.
And the Lord had been preparing my heart all along for what’s here and what’s to come.
We’ve been painting a crib and changing table that was given to us for our baby boy. I’m keen on making sure my love doesn’t miss any spots so it’s perfect for him. Preparing a perfect safe haven for when he arrives.
He’s growing and forming and with each passing day his body becomes stronger. He has no idea of what’s to come in a few short months. That his peaceful life in his mama’s womb is just the beginning. It’s taken some time, but soon he will be ready to venture out into a bigger world. And the dark, safe place he knows right now will be incomparable to the vibrant colors and love and adventure awaiting him. I’ve been preparing a place.
I’ve come to know the Father in these ways. The way He prepares us for new things ahead, makes us a little bit stronger day by day for what’s ahead. As we are living life, unaware of all the ways He is perfectly preparing our future for us. I’ve come to know the Father’s love deeper as I fall more in love with this little lamb whose face I have yet to see. When his kicks grow stronger and I’m filled with excitement, I imagine God’s same excitement when He watches us grow and overcome. Because we will be all the more ready for what is to come next.
I told my husband at the end of 2015 I felt it in my spirit that the Lord was preparing us for change. For things to end so greater things could come to life. At first I became anxious and wanted it all to happen right then, but God needed to prepare us. Grow us and heal us to launch us into what’s to come. It’s not all unfolded yet but I see it coming to life. And I used to feel afraid to leave what’s safe and familiar but I’m not so scared anymore. He’s preparing a place in the distance and allowing us to grow stronger in the meantime.
Dreams will come true. New life in all aspects will be born. Our faith will be stronger than it has been in the past. Day by day. It’s Heaven and it’s now. He’s preparing a place.
” Even if I never believed in Heaven. No matter the circumstances, I would fight for you. I would honor my vows, I would love you still you, because that’s the kind of man that I am. “
You’re the good kind of man, the one who can confess unshakeable love over your easily shaken wife. You’re the steadfast man. The one who is foundation, even through the storm.
And when the past sweeps in like a tidal wave, you are the lighthouse, calling me back to shore.
And when I confess all of my shame, eyes to the floor in the midst of my broken, your soft gaze assures me that, “we’re not all that different.” It seems as though no matter what I have done, you are ready to love me through it.
You’re the man that cleans up the mess your tornado of a wife leaves behind. When life gets messy and busy and loud, you are sure to never leave me behind.
And even when I had been so unloveable, that morning I got home from work you had flowers and chocolate and a card waiting. It was Sweetest Day, and I had forgotten. But you knew. I smiled and forgot why I was mad.
Remember our first year, we lived in a 36 foot long motor home with our dog, thinking we were going to travel this land, but your wife’s ever changing mind realized closet space just wasn’t big enough. So within a month God provided a beautiful home in the country owned by Jesus loving people. And I still believe it was so God could really meet us there, could pull me out of the pit. He changed so much out there in the country. I asked Him to go away but He wouldn’t ever go too far. Remember how we wanted to sell that motor home, thinking it would take awhile, but it was sold right away? And I spent some money and took up scrap booking. You let me get a kitten that first year and we learned love is a fight.
Year two came by the ocean. It was hard and we both cried. Year two came and you learned the well of my soul. I thought this would be the end of it, but you loved me more for it. You learned I’m dramatic and I’m always thinking more than I’m saying and that I long to be a mamma. I learned that you’re willing to go the extra mile and unafraid to say the words that are hard to find and the love you give is a reflection of Jesus. And we spent some money on a real nice camera, ’cause I was gonna get serious about that photography stuff. You let me get a fish that second year, our cat ate him soon after, and we learned love is sweet.
We hit year three in salty air. It’s true we weren’t sure if we would make it at times. Well, you knew we’d make it but it seemed like sometimes I’d made up my mind. Many times I wouldn’t say a thing but you knew by then the well of my soul overflowed. I wouldn’t say a thing so you would wait for me, to find courage. And you were always gentle. Many times I would run my mouth but you knew by now that I was just trying to get under skin. So you pull me in. Love me more. Even after how many times I’ve slammed the door, you pull me in. I crashed the car and you smashed your phone. I’m hard to love but you come easy. We’re still unpacking all of the luggage I forgot to mention I’d bring. But you don’t mind, you say ‘take your time.’ We’ve cried a lot but laughed more. And I spent more money and took up crocheting. Oh, and bath bombs. So there’s an unfinished scrap book, a really dusty camera in the closet somewhere, and an unfinished scarf waiting in the corner. You laugh when I mention a new hobby but you go along with it anyway. You let me get a puppy this third year, and we learned that Jesus is the core of love. You already had known that, but you walked with me through the valley to get to that truth, anyways.
You never give up on me. Always pushing me. Standing like a rock when I throw the hard truth of my faults in your face. And when I think that God couldn’t be this good of a God, that someone like me doesn’t deserve someone as good as you, you continue to show me real Jesus love. You continue to draw me in closer and deeper to His love. That the past is rotten manna. And today is so much better.
Thank you for being you. For worshiping our Father so unashamed. Never changing for anyone, even when they treat you bad. You are sincerely the most genuine, non-judgemental, kind-hearted human I have ever met. Thank you for showing me our Fathers love everyday. Thank you for living out exactly who you proclaim to be. For showing me that we can live life chasing Jesus while being exactly who we are, despite what the “norm” is said to be, despite the looks we receive. Thank you for sticking it out with me. For being my anchor. I love you. And the kind of man that you are.
Sunday my heart hurt as I walked into August with unfulfilled desires that I thought God said were coming true now. As I stood there in church during worship, I remembered what I thought I heard and my chest felt heavy with the unfulfilled. With the desires in heart that I’ve been clinging to. And I remembered the way July has just sucked. Both my husbands uncle and grandma passed away in a span of 3 weeks. Along with a gloom over my heart and no fulfilled desires and the way marriage can sometimes feel like a burden more than the blessing. Dishes pile in sink and I love you’s are forgotten. Like the heat wave it brought, July lit the fire of testing over our life.
My natural reaction is to clench fists, harden heart, put up walls. But I don’t want to be the woman who only holds on to praise in the good times. In the times that everything is fulfilled. I don’t want to be the woman who only releases clenched fists when I can see the road ahead.
We stood in church on Sunday, and though I remembered what I thought I lacked, though for a moment I allowed myself to feel the lie of being deeply alone in this, I closed my eyes and heard His gospel. Eyes closed with unclenched fists, He invaded broken heart and He took the pieces and held them close. He saw who I really was on Sunday, passed fake smiles and clammy hands in fear that they might see what I’m really feeling. Passed the wall and the bitterness and the way I lost my temper the night before. The way I couldn’t comfort the sad eyes of my husband for a moment.
I close my eyes and the gospel sings and wraps me close. Reminds me that I don’t have to be the clenched fist woman when the testing arises. When July brings heat and death and the unfulfilled. Gospel sings and Father comforts and Jesus brings the joy that is mine. So like a thief I quickly consume it all. Hurting heart that slowly mends in gospel.
I write down desires and plans with Father and I trust Him with hope in heart. And today my devotions said to take it slow, as if He knows. He knows. So we take it slow, say a prayer, walk our dogs down the quiet road. We laugh because love is sweet like He said it would be. Like He promised it could be. Fulfilled. And death doesn’t sting in the morning. Memory is good in the morning. I swear we ran into every elderly man in town this morning. Conversation like we are old friends. It’s August and it’s slow and we remember who we are. We believe in who we are. In the One who slowed down life, at least for this morning.
Birds sing, flowers bloom, coffee brews, pups snooze. We begin again. All is well in the land of milk and honey this morning.