Sunday, February 24, 2008

A Vent

Oh, we have been struggling at our house. Many of you know Elijah to be a sweet, well-mannered, and as my sister points out, compliant little boy, so it may be difficult for you to picture the stubborn, strong willed, yelling side of Elijah. I am happy that he typically shows his great side when others are around but as a woman who struggles with patience I wish he wouldn't always show his stubborn, strong-willed side with me.

Two days this week, on our commute into work/daycare Elijah has spent 20 minutes or more yelling at his mom. One day he was very mad that I had taken his cereal, as he had politely requested I do. Another day he was very mad that I had taken his cereal, as he had politely requested I do. For some reason, in his brain when he says," Here you go mom" that means I should take whatever he is offering and hold it in front of him until he decides if he needs it. I figured that out on the first day so I tried to reason with him by saying, "Mommy is going to put it on the seat and when you need it back you just need to ask with your nice words." He agreed with this but as soon as the bag was out of my hands the screaming began. It is hard to show patience to middle schoolers when your two year old has emptied the bank that morning!!

The commute has not been our only struggle. Bedtime has reverted back to 8 month old Elijah where he cries, hoping someone will come back. The catch here is that he only cries when mommy puts him to bed. That one is easy to solve you may say, just have Chris put him to bed. The problem is Daddy has been gone 3 1/2 weeks out of the last 8 weeks (not all in a row).

Why is my two year old unable to see my logic? It is the best logic after all. Of course he redeems himself every time he says, "Love you too" or "How you day, Mommy?" or when he sings Jesus Love Me (he actually knows most of the song now) or when he rubs my arm or when he asks, "Are you okay?" when I cough, or when he snuggles close when we read Little Quack or when he tells me about how David fought the big mean giant, "Liath".

Friday, February 15, 2008

Baby Bump

I am 25 weeks pregnant. For the past two weeks I have heard countless times how pregnant I look. I think this is a veiled way of saying, "Oh my, your belly is huge!" I don't mind, it is what being pregnant is all about.

But it did get me thinking. In 15 weeks I am going to have a new child to take care of. Am I ready for this? Seriously, I have a hard time handling my "I-have-my-mommy-wrapped-around-my-little-finger" two year old. He is sweet and stubborn and talkative and opinionated and adorable and prone to yelling "MINE" at the top of his lungs whenever you touch something, anything that could be his. Am I ready for this?

It doesn't matter if I am ready am or not because it is happening. I just pray God continues to shell out the wisdom and extra patience that is needed. I can tell already that this baby will be a force to be reckoned with; the kick I just received affirms that. But what fun it will be to guide that force and shape this baby into the child, the teen, the adult God wants them to be.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Lent Sacrifice

Teaching in a Lutheran school and not being Lutheran has lent itself to some interesting questions. The one I always get at this time of year is, "Mrs. Anderson, what are you giving up for lent?" The students expect me to say sweets and wish I would say assigning homework.

Last year I actually asked the pastor to explain the purpose of giving something up and found out that giving something up really is a sacrafice or a fast that is meant to bring you closer to God. So last year I gave up sweets as an experiment. Didn't do much growing. So this year I thought about what it is that I do a lot of: discipline, talking, eating, going to the bathroom (darn baby), and worrying. After a short prayer and a common sense moment I decided to give up worry.

So, this lenten season whenever I worry I turn it to prayer. I think this will really help me in my resolution of finding joy and gaining strength. By the way, I have prayed a lot in the past 48 hours and anticipate that the Lord and I will be in much conversation over the next 38 days.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Prison Drama

"This group tonight is going to present a drama. Not prison drama but actual drama."
This is how Susan introduced the drama team from Faith Covenant last Monday as we anxiously awaited our time to do the show. Not prison drama but actual drama...that thought stuck in my head.

Last July, two other women and I wrote a drama that interweaved our faith stories with the psalms. After performing it for a church service we were excited to present it again and that opportunity arouse when we were invited to revival night at a local women's prison. To be honest, I was really look forward to having the night be over. At this point in my pregnancy I am lucky to remember Elijah's name much less lines for a 40 minute dramatic presentation! This was to be my last drama until after baby is born and I was glad to get my Thursday nights back again.

The women filled the room, there were 100 of them. They were about three feet from our performing area and there were no spot lights to blind us and hide their faces. Some faces were alert, some faces skeptical, same faces down right angry. We all struggled to remember our lines, until we remembered we needed to pray. We prayed for us, "Lord bring our lines out in such a way that it will be authentic"; we prayed for them, "Lord, prepare their hearts, touch their hearts, change their hearts."

Worshipping with them and presenting the drama was much like I imagine it would be like in a Southern Baptist church. Most of them worshipped with their whole beings; their faces shining in the Light. Those that were not quiet there worshipped with their mouths; their faces yet skeptical. There was more Amening, Yes Lording, did she really say that, and applause going on during our presentation than I have ever heard in my 29 years.

At the end our director suprised us by asking us to speak on what God was doing in our lives now. Not prison drama but actual mind raced. What could I possibly talk about that would ring true to these women. My life has drama but I do not have prison drama and my drama seems much more petty compared to their situations. Oh Lord, bring me words.
I told them about how God had been beating me into submission when it comes to controlling my life. I implored them to remember that in all things God has control; we just have to remember to let go.

It was a blessed night all around. These women are forever in my heart. I pray that their prison drama will lead them to Christ.