***I'm going to try and re-load the pictures from the last blog! I just realized that they never loaded!***
It's hard to believe that we have only been home 3 weeks! I feel more like we are working on 3 months! These past days (and nights) have been some of the most exhausting and draining days of my life, but the Lord is faithful, and I know that so many of you are faithfully lifting Sophi and our family up in prayer! We are so very, very thankful...
43. Strolling - Back when Web, Palmer, and Hank were tiny (Web had just turned 2 and Palmer had just turned 1 when Hank was born), I bought my triple jogger stroller! It was not cheap, but I knew that it would be worth every penny! And it was! That once bright red stroller has been everywhere - downtown to watch for trains, to Burger King for breakfast, to the park to play in the creek, to the gas station for treats, and any place at all that we could watch construction or road work! We've chased the trash truck more times than I can count and put some serious miles on those 4 tires! With snacks in hand, my 3 little guys were happy, content, and, most importantly, they were contained! For me, I felt like it was the only time of the day that I could catch my breath! Huffing and puffing as we went up the hills in our neighborhood, I could barely breathe, but at least I was breathing! I was making it! I was exhausted and overwhelmed with my little stroller-full, all three still in diapers, but I was alive!
While I have so many sweet memories from those early days, they were hard days! There is so much more to that story that I would love to share and maybe one day I will find the time to share, but it's amazing to look back and see how the Lord used that time in my life to prepare me for this current season of my life! Those challenging days were all mercies, mercies in disguise, as the Lord was preparing me for what our life looks like now!
Now, those three little babies are three big boys, and now there are three more little ones riding in their places! Now, I have 3 more all in diapers, all so very needy and dependent! Now, that bright red stroller is faded and stained, and the treads on the tires are all worn down! Now, I can barely breathe when I'm pushing it up the last big hill before we make it home, and now this crazy and exhausting life makes me more breathless than ever before! To say these are difficult days would be an understatement, and it would not be truthful for me to paint the picture any other way! This is, by far, the hardest thing I've ever done! I feel worn down just like the tires on that old stroller! I feel like I'm running a marathon that has no finish line! But no matter what I may feel, I am alive! I am still breathing! God's Spirit is alive in me, and He is filling my lungs and our lives with each breath that we need! We are making it, one step at a time, one day at a time! The Father to the fatherless, our merciful Father, is giving us the strength to keep pushing!
God's mercies are written all over this stroller! And even though sometimes I long for a lighter load, I cannot forget that it's full of so many blessings... a blond-headed little boy that was an answer to my heart's cry after several years of being unable to get pregnant and wondering if we would ever have another baby again, a brown-eyed baby girl whose sweet little life was such a surprise blessing, bringing so much joy to our family these past 3 months, and another brown-eyed little girl from a far-away place that I could never have imagined would become part of our family!
These little ones get strapped in every morning and off we go! We all look forward to our morning stroll, and that, in and of itself, is such a huge mercy! Sophi even will climb up in the seat to "tell" me she wants to go! :) All three are happy, content, and once again and most importantly, they are all contained! This makes me very happy and content, too! I turn my praise music on loud enough for all of us to hear, and off we go, looking for puppies and trash trucks and turtles and street sweepers! As if pushing the stroller wasn't tiring enough, I am constantly reaching down hand-feeding Sophi every bite of her snack and trying to keep her from grabbing Barrett's snack (and vice versa) and putting Evie's pappy back in her mouth, and, well, it is all so very exhausting! And in the midst of it all, I am crying out to my Father, praying for wisdom and discernment, compassion and patience! The load is heavy, but as long as we are moving, everyone is good! And I am good because God is good! Every gift He gives is good and perfect and sent from above to accomplish His purpose and reveal His glory! I might be breathing hard, but I am still breathing and pushing and breathing and pushing... It is hard and it hurts, and it's a lot like childbirth, and I wonder if the pain will ever go away! When it eases up, it is mercy, and I can breathe a little easier! And when it starts up again, and I forget to breathe...Well, that is mercy, too! Because I know God is good, and He is birthing something beautiful!
44. Pink Bows - When we finally get home from our morning walk and we finally see that big pink bow still tied to our mailbox, I count another mercy...every single time! Some days I have to CHOOSE to count that pink bow as a mercy, but deep down, regardless of how I feel, I know that it is! And so my mercy counting continues! Two pink bows in two months, lots and lots of morning strolls, and so many morning mercies...
Just For Fun :)
Here are the Top 5 Comments I've gotten over the years when I'm pushing my stroller:
5. Are those triplets?
*Really??? Do they look like triplets?
4. I sure hope you picked up a play group! Those can't all be yours!
*You should see the looks on their faces when I tell them it's only half of them!!! People used to tell me that I don't look old enough to have that many kids, but I don't get that comment so much anymore! I think those first 3(or maybe it was the last 3) that gave me a few gray hairs and lines around my eyes!!! ;)
3. Do you need a special license to drive that thing?
2. You need a motor for that stroller!
1. Wow, that looks like hard work!
*Oh, if they only knew!!! :) Pushing this thing is the easy part!
Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think of anything as being from ourselves, but our sufficiency is from God...
2 Cor. 3:5XOXO,