Wash me clean, oh lord

Sometimes, the best part of my day is when I wash all of it off. I pull my hair up and submerge my face in hot water. I let the bad rinse off and go down the drain, scrubbing off the remnants of the long day I had just faced. Even my three year old will ask for a baby wipe to wash her face at night. She wipes away all the tears she has cried that day and all of the frustrations and challenges that she faced. Everything is wiped away in the preparation of a new day.

Psalms 51:7 says:

Soak me in your laundry and I’ll come out clean, scrub me and I’ll have a snow-white life.

I don’t know about you, but I can just see the purity in being washed in the lords presence and his grace pouring into me to wash me whiter than snow.

I love washing my face at the end of a long day, but that is so small in comparison to what Jesus can cleanse us from.

For me it’s stress, exhaustion, mom guilt, teacher worries, and a cop wife life.

What I love about the lord though, and this simple little verse, is that he cleanses so much more than just what my day had on me. He can cleanse your worst moment, your worst day, your breakdown.. and when HE cleanses there are no spots left behind. There are no dark spots…no bumps that are now uncovered.

I want to soak in the lords laundry knowing that tomorrow I will start fresh and pure. I don’t have to carry yesterday’s dirt with me.

I have to wash my face every night and I have to ask the lord daily to clean my heart, my spirit, my attitude, and my mind. I’ve learned that even Christians have to regularly bathe in the lords grace.

I can’t explain why I smiled tonight when I washed my face and this verse dropped into my heart. Maybe it was the simplicity in washing my face and applying that to my spiritual life. Maybe it was knowing that’s God’s grace can wash the dirtiest and make it completely clean without spot.

Lord tonight I pray for cleanliness. I pray for a spiritual washing of grace and purity over the person reading this post. I pray that she would know that no matter how dirty her face got today that you can make it spotless and without blame. I pray that if there is any doubt in your ability to make her whiter than snow that you will flood her spirit with your grace. I pray lord that whatever she faced today that as she washes it all off she feels your presence covering her.

Lord I thank you for always putting your word in my heart… even when I am just washing my face ❤️

National Stress Awareness Day

The first Wednesday in November is national stress awareness day.

I used to dislike myself.

People said I stressed and worried too much.

And they were right.

In general I’m not usually a calm person.

I thought that it wasn’t ok to be like that.

That being concerned over things that others perceived as “small or petty” was a sign of weakness.

I thought that having anxiety when I am away from my children made me a bad mother because “I’m too over protective”.

I thought that not sleeping because my husband had a swat call out made me a needy wife.

I will always choose to bring awareness to coping with stress in a healthy way.

For me it took going through some things to help me to grow to love myself and even to conquer some of the things that I faced daily.

God gave me a cyst on my brain (and yes I really think it had a purpose) and I prayed and saw how precious life was and then time passed and the cyst wasn’t life threatening and I forgot and I slowly started to let my stress over the small things consume my thoughts again.

And then god reminded me how precious life is again when I had a biopsy done (benign). And this time I haven’t forgotten.

I cope. And I’m happy. And at the end of the day what matters is that I’m healthy and I have my beautiful family by my side. My world is in color again and I’m loving myself more and more everyday. I’m loud. I’m southern. I still freak out over “small” stuff..

And I guess a part of me will always be that way. But I’m perfectly ok with the people in my circle that get me ❤️

And as we taught in second grade all this week.. the MORAL of the story is to grow through what you go through

When I started this blog it was a commitment to the lord that I would share my story. Whatever that may entail. I have struggled recently in many different areas and needed to focus on myself, my family, and my own Faith.

About a month before I had my second miracle baby, I found a lump on my breast.

Two days after having the baby I had an infection in my throat and had to go to the doctor on my oldest daughter’s birthday.

That resulted in an ultra sound and then a week later, a biopsy.

My village got me through it. The days were long and fear was becoming out of hand.

I snapped out of it thought and started to seek the lord. I had a peace that must of only been from god.

As I awaited the appointments and test results I asked god what he wanted me to learn in this season. I had just had a baby and was supposed to be full of joy yet I couldn’t go five minutes without crying.

Satan wanted to steal my joy. Satan already knew that I struggled with post partum and used it to his advantage.

Thank god we serve an overcomer huh?

God was showing me during this time the things that I have stressed and worried about in the last year.. my job, finances, etc. and as I looked back on the pettiness of it all I just apologized to him for not trusting him in every area of my life.

My preliminary results came back today and the lump is benign. I’m so thankful for the lords peace through this time and the lessons learned in the trial.

He really is a good good father and I really do see that there is so much more to this beautiful life that I have been given than stress and worry.

Petty arguments with your spouse, unresolved family issues… there’s more to life. I let it all go. I always try to learn the lesson in the trial and with a very thankful heart… lesson learned ❤️

A letter to the only… for now

Scarlett,

In twenty or less days we will add another little girl to our tribe.

You were enough for us. If God had only given us you, you were more than we bargained for.

I know that we are leaving behind this time where it has just been you, your daddy, and myself.

For three years we have had the privilege of giving you our undivided attention and now you’re going to have to share.

You taught me a mother’s love.

You reduced my anxiety in certain areas of life that now seem far less important than you,

& I gained a mamas worry about her baby girl.

You were the first,

& for a while you were the only.

Whats greater than the “loss” of the three of us is the gain we will receive when going to four. You will have a playmate and a forever friend.

You will have a sister and you will be a sister.

God has faithfully restored to our family what was taken away by blessing us with two more little princesses.

You and Dylann Blaire have an opportunity to grow and connect with one another. I pray that you will be each other’s right hand gal, secret teller, shoulder to cry on, defender, protector, & best friend.

The two of you, together, complete us. Soon Dylann Blaire will be the little girl we never knew we couldn’t live without.

A lot is changing Scarlett. We will never be able to return to this time of just us. But one thing is for sure, our love and adoration for you will never change. We are gaining so much more in Dylann Blaire. We have all the love to share with both of you and can’t wait to add her to our journey.

Enjoying the journey…

On November 6, 2018 I wrote “Why are you not enjoying your journey? Why are you always waiting for the next thing to take place?”

“I’ll be happy when…..”

Y’all I’m human. I have emotions. I’m not going to be positive every day. But God sure pulled me up out of my funk and said “hey, don’t let this time pass you by- there is beauty in the process”.

I pray that if it is not the lords will for us to have another child, that he will take away my hearts desire.

How can I say that? Because I know that his ways are greater than my own. I truly want his will for my life, whatever that may be.

And I want to enjoy the journey.

I look back on the words I wrote and I’m so amazed at the faith I had in the lord. I’m so thankful that I have enjoyed this journey and the process to baby Hamby number 2!

In three short weeks I will be giving birth to a SECOND child. My husband never wavered. I was impatient. Constantly looking for a way to baby number two. And he, being the person that he is, said just wait.

I know that God has a plan and a divine purpose for Scarlett and Dylann Blaire. There was so much talk about how they would never be here, not carried by me anyways.

God thank you for allowing me the time to enjoy the journey. For not giving me what I wanted before I needed it and for allowing my faith to be tested.

I pray for the other soon to be mamas that aren’t pregnant yet but know they are destined to raise children. I pray that they too receive the desires of their hearts. I pray that they enjoy the process and find the beauty in the journey most of all. Strengthen them when the days are hard and their dreams seem so out of reach; when the tests are negative and the drs are more interested in what science says than your divine plan.

It’s been a true blessing sharing my story, my process, and the beauty within it all.

I just finished year five of teaching.

I have taught over 100 children in the same community that taught me.

I succeeded. I struggled. I laughed. I cried.

Some days I felt like I was doing nothing, and others I was able to see results and light bulbs.

I have made many friends. Some moved grade levels, or to new schools, or retired. Each one hurt. Even the ones that just went down the hall.

I’ve taught in three different classrooms. With three different administrators.

I’m no longer a five year teacher. I’m a “starting my sixth year teacher”.

I do not have this job figured out.

Someone once told me that you can only say what you know.

What I know is what I know…and what I know is ..

that tree in the picture above was struck by lightening. It split into like a banana peeling and we thought it would die. But right there in the midst of its circumstances, it grew. A lot. New growth. Green leaves.

It’s bent and it’s leaning over but it’s alive and flourishing.

It just reminds me about life in general.. that we are going to have hard times and obstacles to over come but we decide if we are going to die or allow new growth to develop on top.

I’m pretty sure that’s why we get summers, for new growth. A chance to come back stronger the next year than we were this year.

Lord I pray for the teachers that closed their doors for the summer today. I pray that they will take the time to rest and relax. I pray that they will put new on top of the old and come back next year more ready than the year before. I pray that the time that is devoted in their classrooms, while their children are with a babysitter, is replenished back to their families this summer. I pray that next year we will all continue to grow stronger and wiser than the year before. There are many reasons we do our job, but I pray that our first reason is unto you.

A few broken shells…

I wouldn’t have picked up these shells if I had seen them myself. Scarlett was overjoyed to find them. They’re all broken and hold no value. As she picked them up with excitement, I couldn’t help but to think that there are a lot of people that would have passed me by because I was broken and didn’t hold a lot of value. Some even that did. I’m thankful this weekend for a savior that didn’t pass me by because of my togetherness or my worth. I’m thankful for a daughter that still sees beauty in broken shells and still picks up “flowers” that we consider weeds. I dread the day that she sees the rain as an inconvenience and not an opportunity to jump in muddy puddles. Brokenness is beautiful and can be a beautiful place to be as you allow the lord to work in your vulnerability to make you whole again.

“I have two daddy’s”. This one is for the mama who feels inadequate today ❤️

Motherhood is hard.

Yesterday my daughter woke up about 4am pitching the biggest fit I had ever seen for a popsicle and tea.

Of course, she didn’t get it because it’s 4am and we are not starting that habit.

She’s been without her binky for eight days and I’m sure that some of her security and comfort has been taken from her and she is having to rely on other things.

She was inconsolable. “Don’t touch me, don’t cover me up”. My husband gets up, holds her, and she calms down and goes back to sleep. Seriously??

Why couldn’t I do that? Why did she not respond to me? Why is she such a daddy’s girl? Am I failing her as a mom? Can I not give her what she needs?

She’s so blessed to have to two parents in the unity of marriage. I love my husband in many different ways and one of the ways that I love him the most is the way that he is a father to our little girl.

We all got up this morning,despite the exhaustion, and my feelings of inadequacy, (did I tell you she scratched me yesterday too?) and we made it to church- on time I must say. As we are sitting on the pew and people are coming back to greet and say hello, a lady asks Scarlett who brad is. She responds with “my daddy” and then the unexpected “I have two daddy’s”. The lady, her eyes big and round looking at SJ like she has three heads, responds with “you do”.

Me, knowing my child and what I have been teaching her says “that’s right Scarlett tell her who your other daddy is”. SJ proudly says “Jesus is my daddy”. Scarlett knows that she has one daddy that has skin and lives in her house and another that we can only feel and lives in heaven with Aunt Joni.

I am not a perfect mom. I have another little girl coming very soon who will also depend on me to show her the way. The responsibility is great and inadequacy sets in from time to time. She’s not a perfect child. I expect her to have bad days. But I also expect her to be rooted in her faith because she has an example to follow.

Thank you lord for showing me that the small talks I have with Scarlett matter. I pray for the mamas that feel inadequate today in their parenting. I pray that you give them spiritual wisdom in each situation so that they know how to respond in a godly way. God I pray that you are the ultimate leader in our parenting. May you be the one to help us discipline our Children. Let us rely on what your word says about our children- that they are wonderfully made and if we raise them to know you when they are old they will not depart from you. Thank you god for filling our inadequate mama hearts with love and comfort from our loving father. ❤️

The Grace to have a new start: 2019

Y’all… I currently do not have this life thing figured out. I don’t know that I ever will. This past year has been crazy!

We’ve been to three different churches. Are we church hoppers? I don’t know. Call us what you want- I personally think we are just young and trying to find some direction. But I tell you what we haven’t lost in our almost 5 year journey to find a church home- and that’s Jesus. Our children have not lacked, our marriage has not lacked, our faith has not lacked. And that’s because the church isn’t god. God is the church. I’ve learned so much about who to put my faith in- and it’s not man.

I’ve been really down on myself about us walking around this same mountain of where to go to church for going on five years now. But I’ve realized too that we’ve hardly ever missed a Sunday where we didn’t go somewhere. My daddy always told me that it didn’t matter where we went as long as they preached the word of god and we went somewhere. Sometimes I feel like we are in the wilderness but I look back over the past year and I realize that god has never left us.

How else can you explain being diagnosed with a brain cyst and then after Diligent prayer… it was no longer a concern.

Doctors telling us.. if you don’t take these medicines and do these tests you will NOT have another child. Now we are anxiously awaiting the arrival of baby Hamby number 2.

It has been a GREAT year. SJ turned 2. We got our precious Abby, brad worked a murder, uncle Ricky passed away, ( even gifts we don’t want are still gifts), we went to Disney, it cost us 500$ to have our septic tank fixed, brad completed instructor school, Kimberly was teacher of the month.

Oh what a year we are able to look back on just by pulling slips of paper from Nanas old corn meal jar.

My mother in law bought me this plant my first year of teaching. I am currently in the middle of my fifth year. I am aware that it doesn’t look like much.

Last year was a challenging year for me. I showed perseverance and strength that I didn’t even know that I possessed.

This plant died last year. I was about to throw it away because it was so dead but I couldn’t part with it because it was given to me my first year of teaching.

I hadn’t really paid much attention to it until I just walked into the kitchen and noticed the liveliness it has.

I was immediately amazed by the lord. This dying plant- in a time that spiritually I was dying too- is now growing new leaves and thriving.

Thank you Jesus for your reminders that life comes in seasons. That there is a time to grow, a time to plant, a time to reap, a time to sew.

Thank you for the season of spiritual growth that I am in.

There is an opportune time to do things. A right time for everything on the earth. A right time for birth and another for death. A right time to plant and another to reap. A right time to kill and another to heal. A right time to destroy and another to construct. A right time to cry and another to laugh. A right time to lament and another to cheer. A right time to make love and another to abstain. A right time to embrace and another to part. A right time to search and another to count your losses. A right time to hold on and another to let go. A right time to tip out and another to mend. A right time to shut up and another to speak up. A right time to love and another to hate. A right time to wage war and another to make peace.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-12