Monday, September 27, 2010

I didn't know I could sweat this much.

I exercise every morning. It's part of my day and I do it because there's absolutely nothing better in the morning than getting that heart-rate up before dawn, feeling your lungs burn and your muscles ache.

Well, except, maybe, hot, fresh, coffee and a Snuggie.

Or sleeping.

Or public speaking.

Or having bamboo shoots driven under my fingernails.

Ok, those last two...exaggerations.

Actually, I do like exercising in the morning but not nearly as much as Scout or Hannah and they both get all grouchy and malcontent if we don't go walking in the wee hours of the a.m.

And, because it's been 8 billion degrees outside, we kind of sweat. What's even more pathetic is that, more often than not, I'll come home, throw my workout clothes on the floor (deep breath all you type A characters, deep breath) so the next morning, when I'm fumbling around in the dark trying to get dressed, I can just put the same clothes back on.

Gross, yes? I know - but isn't it this kind of honesty that makes you thankful you don't live next door. I know - silver lining. You're welcome.

Anyway, I spent last week preparing for a talk I was giving to a MOPS group on Friday. Although I was a communications major - at an Agricultural and Mechanical School - I haven't spoken publicly in years and the whole process made me really nervous.

I sweated.

A lot.

I needed double-extra-strength antiperspirant. Have you ever tried to spell that word? I had to look it up because I kept getting the red, squiggle, underline thingie.

The group was so sweet and welcoming and didn't hold it against me that I probably missed their annual topic by a mile and forgot the age of my youngest child. Six. She's six. Six.

I remember what it was like being in their shoes - having all my chicks underfoot all day long and what a fun break it was to spend some time with other mom's who were equally as covered in spit-up as I was.

I prayed a lot about what I should say and what I remembered, or wished, someone had shared with me.

Sadie is six.

I really believe the Scriptures are clear on three things in relation to raising kids.

1. Become a lover of God's Word. It is this primary means the Lord has used to reveal himself and there is not a word of advice or counsel or exhortation, inside or outside the four walls of a church, that should not be sifted through the sieve of the Word of God. Love His word and great wisdom is needed so that we don't fall into the trap of thinking there is anything else of significance besides Christ alone.

I have hidden your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.
Psalm 119:11

2. Learn to love what God loves. The world launches grenades at us insisting that our End Game is a child who is bright, well-socialized, active in various sports – even great at sports, who performs increasingly well in a rigorous education process so he or she can graduate from high-school, go to the college of their choosing, land a well-paying job and become leaders in their industry – or at least marry one who is. And as for us, our homes are clean and perfectly decorated. We throw fabulous birthday parties with homemade invitations, and still find time to cook all our organic meals from scratch.

In Christ, we have been freed from these all these ridiculous expectations but, unfortunately, like dogs returning to their vomit (sorry, that's gross but I love that illustration from Prov. 26:11), we often handcuff ourselves back to the things we've been liberated from. As we learn to love the Lord, we learn to love the things that He loved. They define our End Game and give us a hope beyond this vapor that is our present life.

For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God.
1 Peter 1:23

And 3. We need to know that Life in the son has always been a corporate affair. His word knows nothing of an independent, individualistic, insulated disciple (Jesus Manifesto, Sweet and Viola). You have been given to one another as a gift – to love, encourage, and exhort one another in the things of the Lord.

Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints.
Philemon 1:7

Perhaps they would have rather had George Clooney just stand in front of them for 45 minutes but I couldn't get a hold of him so that's all I could come up with.

I sweated a lot, more than when Hannah and Scout make me walk, but it was so fun being with young women who are just on the precipice of life with kids. I was way blessed.

And I put my clothes in the laundry basket. And washed them. In case you were wondering.

She's six.


Henley on the Horn said...

I can only imagine how blessed those women were to sit under you for 45 minutes. She's six, remember?

Polly said...

your blog always leaves me in stitches. As a former MOPs attendee with an almost 6 year old ;) I agree that those mamas were so blessed by your presence

Candy said...

You go, girl! I think we celebrated Sadie's sixth birthday March 2nd. Not to be outdone, however: I could not remember my SS# on Saturday morning. But I do have a few years on you.

Thankful it went so well. You gave them good food.


I Just Want A Cup of Coffee said...

Ok, blogger is acting strange so forgive me if this is a duplicate. Thank you for the reminder about loving God's word and the things that He loves. I needed that! And, I thought putting your clothes in the floor for the next day was a great idea, considering this Type A hates laundry. Doesn't motherhood sort of morph us into Type B's anyway??? HUGS, Ruth

Holly said...

We loved having you. It was a pleasure to meet you on Friday. And no one noticed the sweat! You were a tremendous blessing and I know for at least me that it was a divine appointment as God NEEDED me to hear your message. Thank you for blessing me!

Missy @ It's Almost Naptime said...

Oh, I know you ROCKED it!!! You know how I know? a) because you rock and b) because if I don't cry a little at every MOPS type event I go to, I ask for my money back, and you just made me tear up. It was point #2, in case you wondered.

emily said...

Came out of packing hole to read this! Bet you blessed those women greatly. Love the sweaty clothes too, awesome.

Missy @ It's Almost Naptime said...

Oh, I know you ROCKED it!!! You know how I know? a) because you rock and b) because if I don't cry a little at every MOPS type event I go to, I ask for my money back, and you just made me tear up. It was point #2, in case you wondered.

missy said...

even tho i feel like i'm more the age of a mentor mom than a mops mom anymore, i needed to read this today.

kathy said...

I found you through Moody and Emily....I grew up in Atown with Moody, went to Dr. A, and the whole nine yards. We currently live in MN and so reading your blog feels like I'm at home with "my people". In fact, sometimes I read it outloud just to keep my southern accent up to date. :) Love your stories and honest words; always leave feeling blessed and challenged...thanks! Kathy

Linda said...

"Agricultural & Mechanical" School...You make me laugh! Thanks for the great reminders about how simple our faith should be...Enjoy! Linda

Candis said...

Thank you so much for coming! I did not notice one drop of sweat! Everything you said was so relevant but my favorite thing was your example about instilling within our children our passions (Mexican food, etc.) and whether they see that same passion/pursuit for Christ within our family. Thanks again!

LLMajer said...

Thank you so much for coming. I finally posted about meeting you and how kind you were to me!