Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Life in Pictures

I realized that I'd like to have more day-to-day things on my blog, as a way to keep my friends/family in touch with what's going on in our lives. I sorted through my recent pictures, and decided on a few that should give a peak into our ever so busy but fulfilling lives :)

Since pregnancy has been a pretty big topic this far in the blog, I'll start there. This is what my poor tummy looked like on one side after maybe three or four of the blood thinning shots I have to give myself while pregnant. Apparently, your whole stomach looks like this by the end of pregnancy. Yikes!

The weekend we lost our little one, we had the wonderful chance to go visit Reed's family in Tennessee. What a great distraction, and chance to be with family as we mourned our baby. We spent some time with Reed's folks, who were in from Korea (we hadn't seen them in a year).

We also met our newborn nephew Anderson and played with his big sis Maddie:

When we got back from Tennessee my brother Clee came to stay with us for a week, while he was on Spring Break. He hung out with Michael, the baby I watch:While Clee was here I took sweet Sophie, one of the other kids I watch, to a birthday party at a local (awesome!) children's museum:

On Easter, Reed, my brother, and I left Lynchburg very early in the morning to make the Easter service at our church in Maryland. Afterwards, my dad, his wife, my mom, Clee, Reed, and myself went out for coffee:
We went to my grandparent's house for Easter dinner before our drive home, but I don't have any pictures. :(

Of course, these pictures are in no way an exhaustive itinerary; I don't have any pictures of us in school, or Reed at work, or me with the other 4 I babysit, or church activities.... etc. I need to break out my camera more often! I will leave you with some cute pictures:

This is a cake I made one night when we had company. I thought it was pretty cute!

This one cracks me up! We have these espresso mugs (that Reed's parents brought us from China) which look like mini coffee mugs. Michael is always trying to grab my coffee out of my hands, so I thought I'd give him a little (empty!) mug of his own. He was having a drool-y day, so it looks like he spilled his drink down the front of his shirt!

Okay, I've got a soft spot for this big, crazy haired baby (and all the kids I watch, really). This is 4 month old Michael working on sitting up. I spend more time with this kid than anyone else in my life... Reed included. He is so precious!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Trying to Conceive

God has been teaching Reed and I so much in these past weeks. It is wonderful to me how God can use one lesson to teach so many different things to my heart. We have gone from trying to praise God through our storm, to knowing and trusting it was all for His glory, then realizing His will is greater than ours. This last lesson is the one I am currently still growing in; acknowledging that God is Lord and I am not is a hard lesson learned for a selfish sinner such as myself.

I find myself thinking about having a baby in the back of my head, this interior monologue that plays throughout my day. "Am I pregnant now? Will I be this month? If I am, when will the baby be born? Will there be complications? Will we lose the next one, too?" I have justified this constant parade of baby-thoughts because I feel that this is now my role in life, to have children, and since it is not going according to my plans, I am trying to plan even more. But no matter how I try to hide what my feelings truly are, I must be honest with myself: my thoughts during the day are nothing more than worry and attempts at control.

This is sin! In Matthew 6:24, the Bible says "Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble." Worrying about tomorrow does nothing but try to take control out of God's hands. By worrying or planning, I will not change a thing. Proverbs 20:24 says, "A man’s steps are from the LORD; how then can man understand his way?"

Not only should I not worry, and not try to over-plan my life, I need to rejoice in the truth that God's knows not only what is best for me, but for His glory! God is an all-knowing God, He alone knows why I am not pregnant. Maybe there is a lesson He wants me to see, a sin I must overcome. Maybe I would become violently ill when pregnant (like my Mom did) and would have to stop working. Maybe we're going to have triplets and we need to save up money first. Maybe He wants us to adopt all of our children and is teaching us patience first. It is not my place to know! My job here is to step out in faith, and trust in the Lord to do what is right.

The purpose of my life is to bring God glory while I am here on earth, and to obey Him in all I do. If the reason I want children is to glorify the Lord, and He would have something else for me in my life right now, than children must not be how He wants glory right now! I do not want my children, before they are even born, to become idols in my heart. God is first; if my heart truly wants children for selfless reasons, then I will be happy to surrender parenthood for God.

I need to step back, and not allow 'trying to conceive' to become my identity. That is not who I am, but a part of it. I will continue to follow my husband's lead and try to start a family unless God makes it obvious that He has some other plan for us. But I will no longer allow a month to feel pointless and wasted if I did not get pregnant. My desire is for Christ, and His best for me, not my best for me.

Psalm 37:4 says, "Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart." This verse is not saying that God will give me want I want if I love Him, but that if I love Him, my desires and His will be one in the same. If that is true of my heart, than my desires and Christ's will be one in the same.

Lord, have me desire what it is that YOU want for my life. Allow me to use this time in my life to serve You and others in ways I will not be able to if you bless us with many children. Teach Reed and I what it is we are to learn, and continue to conform our hearts to Yours.