Thursday, February 22, 2018

Whatever You Do

I lay in bed early this morning with her feverish little body pressed up against me. Her little fingers laced tightly into mine. Her head heavy on my shoulder. Every few minutes her body seizing.
It's the second time in a week that she spiked a fever although this time it wasn't at the terror-filled 105 level it was a week ago. All three of our littles have battled the fever and cough and body aches over the last two weeks. Just when we think we are through the woods it hits again.
We are in the final weeks of finishing our book. The hardest weeks. The hours in the day not enough to get done what needs to be done.
Our wonderful new helper found another job. We are back to tag teaming child care and work.
Doctors visits, testing and other appointments have kept us on the road more than we would like.
We now have two wearing glasses.
Conventions loom in a matter of weeks. I have seminars I am giving with no time between now and then to prepare for them.
How Lord?
I lay there early this morning holding my baby girl, fighting off exhausting. It is easy to slip into self-pity. Some days I go there quickly. How Lord? How?
Then she reaches her little hand up to my face, pats me and pulls my head down and kisses me on the cheek. She snuggles back down in my arms. Burrowing under the covers. Pressing as close as she can. Back to sleep. Safe.
Those moments.
And these - three littles helping Papa make Sunday morning pancakes.
 Precious moments of pleasure in the midst of hard.
Little girl's seizure still out of control.
How Lord?
I don't know how. It's one step at time at this point for us. But I know that this is what we have been called to do. These kids. Each one. Our business. The books we write. The families we minister to through our material. The students I teach. Simple ministries every one. It isn't glorious. It doesn't allow for time off and days away. But it is what God has called us to do.
So we dig in and plow ahead. Ministering as we go. Trying to be faithful in all that we do. God-honoring. Writing. Talking to homeschooling families. Loving our babes.
Some days better than others.  Praying for grace and strength. Finding joy in the small things.
"Whatever you do, work at it will all your heart as working for the Lord..."


Monday, February 5, 2018

Silver Linings

Though we continue to walk a hard road right now with little girl... we can look around and see little silver linings in the hard.
The prayers, kind e-mails, words of encouragement and private messages that have been sent our way over the past few weeks. They are silver linings.
She is no longer pinching and hitting every five minutes. Another silver lining. 
Instead of pushing me away in frustration and anger, she has moments now where she wants to be held.  Huge amount of silver there. Each morning I get the joy of gathering her in my arms and holding her as she drinks her juice. Rocking and holding and kissing her little face as she drinks. Precious moments. I don't take them for granted.
Another very important silver lining for us is that we qualified to receive assistance through a program here in Virginia. This means that we now have an extra set of hands in our house to help us with little girl. Those hands are priceless and I am thanking the Lord for the help they are giving.  Rob and I both work from home, but since Mary has been here I have not been able to do any work. We have a new book coming out in a matter of weeks and I am so behind on what I need to do for this book that I was starting to drop into a dark hole of depression. This week I have been able to start chipping away at that mountain of work and already am feeling mental relief from everything.
Every night before she falls asleep I go in and sing Jesus Loves Me to her. She will often reach up and wrap her arms around my head while I sing and will sing along with me in her funny little manner. When I'm finished she grabs Pooh Bear and holds on to him tight and burrows deep under her covers. We sing Winnie the Pooh together and then I cover her with kisses and walk out of the room with her protesting loudly until she drops off to sleep.
The singing. The kisses. The hugs. The protesting. They are priceless silver linings. They make me chuckle every single night. They bring a smile to my face no matter how worn down I am.
We have been blessed by these silver linings.
We still covet your prayers. It is so hard to watch our little girl have seizure after seizure after seizure all day long. It's hard to see her drugged and frustrated and unhappy.
She's on three drugs right now and two of them are just completely messing her up. We were backing off one of them because she was raging, but had to stop backing off that one in order to back off the other one which makes her so drunk and drugged that at times she can hardly hold her head up. Think raging drunk and you have a good idea what she is like a good bit of the time! Raging drunks don't know how to make good decisions and have no sense of danger. Raging drunks need to be watched every single solitary moment. Raging drunks hate being told no!
It's a struggle for her and for us as we try to figure out how best to help her.
All the silver linings the Lord has given us in the last few weeks - they are our lifeline in the midst of hard.
The Lord is trustworthy in all He promises
and faithful in all He does.
The Lord upholds all who fall
and lifts up all who are bowed down.