Friday, January 27, 2012
There was a baby dedication in church on Sunday. Our church does not do baptisms on babies, we dedicate them and their lives to Jesus. Basically, the whole premise of it is this, "Thank you Lord for giving us a child, we now will give this child back to you so that you can watch over them and fulfill all your wants and desires for their life. We trust you to take care of them."
Do you think most of them have ANY idea what they are doing? I was sitting listening to this on Sunday and I can honestly say when I found out this would be happening I was actually dreading it. For more reasons than one but that's quite obvious already. Anyway, I was sitting there and most of the time all I wanted to do was run up there and tell them to stop. STOP STOP IT RIGHT NOW...DON'T YOU REALIZE WHAT YOU ARE DOING? You are basically giving God permission to do whatever He wants in your baby's life. You are telling Him that you are ready and that you trust Him with your child. Do you get it? Do you know what that means?
Dan, the pastor and my father-in-law, kept saying over and over...give your child back to God, giving your child back to God , you are going to give your child back to God. All I could think about was how we are the ones who gave our child back to God, these people haven't and more than likely they will never have to. August 13th came and we gave her back to God before we ever even had a chance to try to trust Him with her life. We had to give her back before we could dedicate her to God. I guess dedicating is all about trusting. So, we are back to that again. Trust, boooo. I'm not a fan but I guess it's something I must do in this life so I should probably tell you that I am trying. By trying I mean kicking and screaming all the way. I told Wesley that I'm not so sure that I want to dedicate our future babies to God. I am still not so sure that I am that trusting of Him yet and in his GREAT wisdom I'm sure babies won't come until I am ready. More boooing for that. Don't you think that patience should be a bad word? I TOTALLY do. I'm getting off topic. It's 6:47 AM, give me a break...
So, I guess to all the parents who have dedicated their babies to God or will dedicate their babies to God, I will say this. I hope you know what you are telling God in that moment. You are saying that it is ok if your 3 month old suddenly stops breathing one morning, you are saying that it's ok for your 3 year old baby boy to suddenly have cancer that is growing, you are saying that it's ok if they are 13 and killed suddenly by a drunk driver. You are saying that it's ok because you trust Him. You will trust His plan and you will believe in His hope. I am learning, slowly but surely. And I guess my conclusion this morning is that this life...it blows. Horrendous things are going to happen whether you put your trust in Him or not so I guess I would rather have it be in Him than not. I love the couple that dedicated their baby back to Jesus that Sunday. They have a sweet baby girl that was born 1 week and 1 day after our Ellersley. God does that sometimes. At first it seemed like a horrible joke that He was playing on us but now that baby is so sweet and we get to see firsthand what our sweet Ellersley would be like. How big she may be (even though she was preemie so she may have been a tad teeny), how many stories she'd be telling, if she could hold her own head up yet...all kinds of things. I know this couple knows the pain of those in their congregation. They know that there is more than 1 couple sitting in the audience that really has given their baby back to God. They know...I just wonder about all the others. Give your babies back to God and I hate to say it but brace yourself...cuz it could get ugly!
This seems entirely more negative than I meant for it to be. Oh well, it's how I'm feeling lately. It's a blog, it's my feelings...God told me to write it, so I wrote it. You can't be mad at me for that right?
Lord, be with me today. Lead my steps and guide my words. Give people an understanding of you and how you work Jesus. How about just give Me an understanding of that? : ) I love you and I am learning every day how to trust you and what that entails. Thank you for a growing relationship and continued learning. This life will never stop moving until the day that it does. Thank you for that. Give me peace today, you and I both know that yesterday was just an ugly day for no reason at all, whatsoever. I'm not sure what was up with that but I wasn't feeling it. Thank you for always being near...
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
Sunday, January 22, 2012
Winter has arrived here in Ohio! It decided to come pretty late this year. We had some 55 degree days at the beginning of January which is just a flat out miracle for Ohio, but alas the snow has come and I'm pretty sure it's about 15 degrees outside right now. If it's not 15, it feels like it's 15. I love that statement from the weather man, "High in the mid 20's today but it will feel like it's about 10 degrees." Why don't they just say it's 10 degrees, who cares if it isn't really 10 degrees? I mean really do you notice the difference? Hmm let's go stand outside for about an hour and we will both guess what the temperature is...by the time you are done you are both frozen and it no longer matters what the temperature is. The only thing that matters is how you are going to get the feeling back in your fingers and toes. Ridiculous...I hate the cold. Ellersley told me that heaven is not cold, so there. Wesley and I have debated a move to the south many times. Well, it goes more like this..."I hate the cold, let's move to Hawaii". "Ok, let's do it". Then, we continue driving to our destination and once we step out into the cold, somehow it stops our memories from working and we forget that we ever decided that we were going to move to Hawaii. That's really a bummer...
So, I've been thinking a lot lately about how much I hate the cold and also about why we are all still living on this Earth even though sometimes the pain is too much to bear. The other day I was talking to a friend and we were talking about something HORRENDOUS that had happened to a family that we both knew. I said to her, "This world just really blows..." She came back with this..."Yeah it does, sometimes. God always makes it worth living though." I laughed at what she said and the way that she said it. Almost every single person I have said 'life blows' to has come back with the exact same response. It's a true-to-the-core statement, what she said, but my life is so very different now and I'm starting to really notice the things that people say to me. Before Elle passed away that comment would come out of my mouth now and then about some horrible tragedy and everyone around me would say, "It sure does, this life just blows." Now, people are always trying to make sure that I am aware that life is hard but God is good. It's like they need me to know that life is still worth living and to not give up yet. It's interesting, I've never had people worry about me in that context. It's just new to me, I guess.
I can honestly say that not one time has ending it all even come to my mind, thank you Lord. That is because of Him and only Him. I just know that is NOT an option. I am called to life and life more abundantly with Him. I am living for a purpose and a calling. God has a plan for my life just like he had a plan for Ellersley's life, he still has one. Her life is making a big difference all over the place, how amazing is that??? A purpose and a plan even after life. I can only hope that my life does that; that it changes people even after I'm gone.
I'm still living because of the risk of Joy. There is a risk, there is a chance that Joy could come. I live this life, every day, with the idea that maybe, just maybe, Joy might be right around the corner. I know that the Joy of this life outweighs ANY and ALL of the pain and sorrow that this life could throw at me. The joy of a smile, the joy of watching our nephews run and play in the summer, the joy of the beach, the joy of knowing Jesus, the JOY of a new baby. Wesley and I are ready for another baby; we are longing for the day that Jesus's plan lines up with ours and we bring life into this world again. How is that possible? That doesn't even make sense in my own mind! It is all because of JOY! Ellersley's life inside my belly brought us tears of joy, smiles every morning, excited laughter during the day and giggles late every night. We know that Joy made it all worth it. We would do it all again if we had to, just to feel that joy again. And that's what we are willing to do. We are risking it all for that joy. We hope and pray harder than we ever have that baby # 2 will be so healthy when it does come. We pray that the birth of our second will not be it's death also. We pray that I will be healthy in body, spirit and mind. We pray that God would fulfill all of his promises and that this baby will be raised in Him. We are ready to experience that Joy again and that's what we are living for, the Joy that is found only in Jesus. In the meantime, we trust that it will come and we just keep looking and searching and waiting for it.
Psalm 30:5 - Weeping may last through the night, but JOY comes with the morning!!!
Keep searching for JOY, it's out there...you may just be missing it! Thank you Jesus for the JOY you allow to flood this life. Thank you for the risk of JOY! Allow us all to search for it around every corner of this life; to expect it and anticipate it. It's the only way to live life and live it abundantly, like you have said to do! Thank you for the things you have been whispering to Wesley and I...your promises fill our hearts with more JOY than we ever expected! You and your plans are more than we can handle most days. Thank you for them and thank you, again, for our JOY!
P.S. Happy Sunday! That should give you some JOY!
Photo courtesy of : Tamiz Photography
Saturday, January 14, 2012
my little butterfly, it followed me everywhere this fall
had some serious fun with these crazies...rolling around in the dirt, naturally
this is blurry but fun at the Newport Aquarium in Kentucky!
the best of friends
Mr Carter turned 5!!!!
We were chefs for a night :)
and then Kyle turned 4!!!
Wes turned 8? haha no silly 26!
I turned...well anyway
Gib turned the big 2 1...wooo
we had a wedding shower!!!
We had a bachelorette party at Gervasi
We had Christmas Mondays and danced the night away!
We had a wonderful Christmas!
Love you all and can't wait to see what God has for us and for you in 2012!!!
So, it's cold and snowy and it's 10:13 pm and I feel the urge to post pictures...so here are some of my favorites from 2011...It was a year of fun, joy, sorrow and hope :)
|Most disturbing photo of 2011...but still a fuuuun day spent whale watching and snorkeling at Molokini|
|My brother, Danny, and his mullet...never fear it did not stay that way...for the dignity of all involved|
|The Mr. and I in paradise|
|Yeah, that's a double rainbow in Hawaii....nothing better, absolutely nothing!|
Wednesday, January 11, 2012
Isaiah 49:23 Those who trust in me will never be put to shame.
I was having a bad day a few months back, like we are talking grouchy as all get out and crying for no apparent reason. Well, except for the one reason that is always apparent, but hey no other reason for the unending tears. I was in my recliner, the recliner that was intended to be Wesley's but somewhere in the chaos of life it became mine. :) I must say I'm pretty happy about that. For a few months there, the recliner was the chair used to yell at God. I know every morning when I got up God was watching with anticipation and hoping that my steps wouldn't turn right into the living room and make their way over to that chair. I sat, I cried, I yelled and I told him how unfair all of his choices for my life were. I told him that I was so tired of being patient and I wanted answers. I wanted to know why. Then, I opened my Bible. I can honestly say that what happened next has never happened to me before in my entire life. Normally, I read the Bible and of course it is full of AWESOME revelations every single time but nothing that was a direct answer to my questions. I opened my Bible to Isaiah 49 and I started reading verse 8...
This is what the Lord says, "At just the right time, I will respond to you."
I laughed out loud. OK, OK, I hear ya! I kept reading...verse 13 - 16...
Sing for joy, oh heavens! Rejoice, oh Earth! Burst into song, oh mountains! For the Lord has comforted His people and will have compassion on them in their suffering. Yet Jerusalem says, "The Lord has deserted us; the Lord has forgotten us." Never! Can a mother forget her nursing child? Can she feel no love for the child she has borne? But even if that were possible, I would not forget you! See, I have written your name on the palms of my hands. Always in my mind is a picture of Jerusalem's walls in ruins.
Insert more crying here. God is forever showing me that He has me on His mind, ALWAYS. My name is written on the palms of His hands and forever in His mind is a picture of that day when our lives were devastated, when our dreams were in ruins. Today, I was reminded of how much He loves me. He is doing some Mighty things around this Deem household and I hope you are seeing the Mighty things he is doing around your home as well. When Ellersley was born all I wanted was for everyone to know her. I wanted to shout from the highest mountain that we had a baby girl even though she could not be seen. I wanted anyone and everyone to know that our baby was LOVED and that we were overjoyed to have had her in our life for the short period of time that we did. As a Mommy to a baby that is not on this side of eternity, I needed people to know about her. I loved and still love talking about her and how precious and perfect she is to our family. After 5 months, those feelings have dwindled. I LOVE talking about her, don't get me wrong but the need for everyone to know her has diminished a little. The point of this all is to say that God knew that urgent need of mine and is making it happen. Now, 5 months later, Jesus is working and Ellersley is going to be known and seen by a lot of people. I am valid and complete proof, God hears our cries. He listens to our pleas and he LOVES to bring them all to fruition. He loves to make the things that felt so wrong to begin with come to feel oh so right. I just love the Bible...
Those who trust in Me will NEVER be put to shame.
How awesome is that? I mean seriously...That tells me that what Satan saw as an opportunity to bring shame and depression and anger, God saw as an opportunity for us to trust Him and that if we did, shame would NEVER come our way. Jesus brings freedom where shame could reside, Joy where depression could live, and Love where anger could overtake. Our trust in Him has brought us through the depths of sorrow. I remember crying in the hospital those first few days and I remember thanking God for discouragement that does not lead to despair. We have not fallen into despair because we have the hope of Jesus. Hope and a promise to restore all that has been destroyed. Isn't God so awesome? Trust in Him and you will NEVER be put to shame.
Thank you Jesus for continually showing me that you are a part of this life that I am leading. Thank you for never forgetting me and never forgetting that day. Thank you for listening to my pleas, cries, rants and raves. Thank you for the promise of no shame in exchange for trust in You. Thank you for fulfilling the desires of my heart, you are my King. Thank you for ALWAYS loving me in the wonderful way that you do. From my heart to yours, I love you...