Welcome to my blog! The title "To Train Up a Mother" refers to the profound effects our children have on us, and how as we set out to "Train them up in the way they should go"...we find just how much God wants to teach us through them! These are my daily musings; a young mother to seven little souls on loan, how I've been so blessed by opening my heart to His plan and gift of CHILDREN, and...how I'm being totally transformed along the way.
I'm Liz, wife to Brian, and a homeschooling Momma to our seven wonderful children. We believe that children REALLY ARE a GIFT from the Lord, and have been blessed incredibly by trusting HIM with the number and timing of these gifts, trusting Him to provide financially, spiritually, emotionally and practically in the raising of them. We also homeschool them(sometimes more in theory than practice! haaaa!)
I was born and raised in Skagit Valley, WA. and met my amaaaazing better half Brian, at the tender age of fifteen. By seventeen,I didn't see any point in refusing his proposals any longer! We were engaged in October of my senior year of highschool, invited the whole school to our great big happy wedding,got hitched the friday night before Spring break. (Now that's the way to do Spring break ;)
We both always knew we wanted a lot of kids, but our conviction to actually release the timing and number of that to their Creator, came graaaadually.
My big "15 minutes of fame" came this January when I gave birth to my seventh, a little daughter Juliet Mercy, in the passenger seat of the family van while driving to the hospital. (Don't miss the news clip on that one!)
...how He "knits them together in their mothers' wombs"? And all we do is just watch the beautiful evidence of the miracle that is happening, completely and utterly mesmerized at The Creator's handiwork. How can anyone see it and not know we have a very great God with a very great Love?
The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. ~Psalms 19:1
How much more is this beautiful image a declaration of our God and His great loving hand?
Surely my husband with the fractured foot wouldn't have? He was told not to put weight on his broken foot. Surely he couldn't have lugged 100 lbs. of garbage down this hill..... on crutches?!?!
But it would seem that he somehow did.
I think his words when interrogated were "What? I just used a crutch."
But I'm still trying to imagine how in the world he did it.....????? Hmmm....
Just when I think I've seen it all! This man inspires me! I would do him a great injustice at this point if I didn't take this opportunity to say what is really great about my husband. God's Word does not say it is muscles that move mountains (or hurkin garbage cans) but it is faith. Not just faith, because we all have faith in something. The kind of faith that moves mountains is the the kind that acknowledges the One who created the mountains as the object of the faith. The example of Jesus Christ, is where my Superhero gets his super. His is the kind of faith that would hold fast if God chose to break both his legs and whatever else because he knows it is an undeserved gift and he knows his God is good and works in very mysterious ways. He knows that his ability to work comes only from the God that puts breath in his lungs in the first place. In a world that looks pretty bleak at times, you can still easily find these guys if you know where to look. They are around and you will know them by their love. That verse about faith moving mountains goes on to say:
If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.When love and strength run low like it does for all of us at times, the guys that amaze us are the ones who find their strength and example in the ultimate hero ~ Jesus. These are the ones that keep the world going round. The next generation is eagerly watching these men and learning that they are usually disguised as regular guys, while doing superhero things.
They're the ones weed-whacking and disguised in ridiculous looking plastic bags over their casted broken legs; very often disguised behind babies...
with hands that serve...smores...with obvious love in their eyes...with heads bowed in prayer as they seek wisdom and strength... living out for us the very gospel of Christ in such colorful pictures day in and day out that we cannot see it and not be immensely blessed and changed by it.
I was a little surprised when my sister recently commented that my Gum Removal post had been the most practical and helpful post that I've blogged. She seemed to think I should share more practical advice. I have found that the more kids I have, the more I find myself focusing on (and bloggin about) principals instead of the methods that have really faded out of importance in my mothering. My memory seems to have retained only what it deemed the essentially important stuff (which usually is, the principle). I have found that children survive whether they were scheduled or on-demand, whether they wore huggies or Pampers, etc... Whether little butts ought to be slathered in organic diaper cream or stinky ole Desitin doesn't get me real revved up anymore. I usually don't even remember what worked and what didn't. These days, I cling to my principles and very often just shake my head and laugh, run for the camera and instruct as I go. But I think my sister has a point. New mothers do need a little methodology sometimes to bring godly principals into practical mothering because it is such new ground. So, I've decided to try harnessing some principal with a little more step by step practical help here on To Train Up a Mother. Beginning with.........HOW TO RESPOND WHEN YOUR SON RIPS APART YOUR HOME AND YARD TO MAKE A HOMEMADE CAST IN IMITATION OF HIS FATHER: 1. First, breathe. Try to see past the gaps in your little white picket fence and look at your son's heart. He wants to be just like Daddy. What a beautiful thing! Scripture says the heart, is "the wellspring of life" so we don't want to bypass it's intentions! I highly recommend Shepherding a Child's heart if you have not read it.
2. Get the camera. We want to capture these beautiful things.
3. Laugh. Because...it is funny. The kid has a pair of Fruit of the looms wrapped around his foot, held securely with a bungy cord. He has ripped apart the white picket fence of the American dream in such perfect childish irony.
4. Now of course, instruct him. After you get a good pictures, make sure he puts back his Father's bungy cord and understands to ask permission next time he gets into Dad's stuff. Make sure he puts the briefs in the laundry, and that (here's the clincher!) he fixes the fence. If you fix it for him, you've just crushed his dream of being like his hard working Daddy.
5. Don't feel guilty if you need a margarita now. A lot of us would. ;)
It was a pretty great one though until Superhero finally showed a human weakness and broke his foot. Actually, it was still pretty fun even with the broken foot! Thanks to our great ER escort Jack and his treasure trove of stories and jokes, we had our funnest ER experience yet! (Thanks McPs and Melody for watching all the littles.) I am really relishing in our church community these days! Well...and then there's always Vicodin. But look at the man still hard at work! He's so dedicated. This is him last night after the color came back to his face but before the ER. (Still a bit nauseous) He's hamming it up for the camera hardly out of shock. I guess he heard it pop when he twisted it. Ughhh.... I had never seen a person's face get so white! Brian is such a strong and steady guy that it made the rest of us a bit nauseous seeing him go down! He's the type of guy that will tackle Costco with seven kids in tow and not even break a sweat. He's so strong and dependable that I've actually had dreams that my husband is actually is an undercover superhero. In times of certain disaster he just whips out his flying skills, Superman style and swoops in to rescue falling ladies and their babies and I'm like "Oh! Nice work hon! Well that's handy!" Napolean was right. It's all about skills.
So anyway, it is a bit of a shock to have him out of commission and I realize even more how much I depend on him and what a blessing he is.
What am I saying... out of commission? He was walking by just now on his cruches when he heard this Soggy Bottom Boy song and started dancing and stomping his crutches. Maybe I should have warned them back at the ER about mixing Superheroes and Vicodin???