Friday, November 04, 2011

Devotion for Baby Shower

I am so sad to miss out on this opportunity to get to celebrate LeAnne and the gift of this baby boy. I was asked to share a devotional and while honored, I also know my wisdom and experience pales in comparison to many ladies that are in LeAnne's life. Especially the example of her mom Judy. I am so thankful for their close relationship and friendship and the instruction that her parents and Josh's parents give to them to seek after the Lord. The is no greater accomplishment. My own parenting has been a constant learning process and with each new child I realize how little I only thought I knew. I pray for less of me and my weaknesses so that HE can fill and lead our family.

Devotional:


Live Fully in the moment. While it is easy to love a sleeping, snuggling, cooing baby. Kisses on warm fuzzy heads & velvet skin. Chubby little fingers, toes and thighs. That breathtaking love so deep that our hearts hurt as they sigh and find utter fulfillment resting on our chests. As those first hours turn into days and then weeks of lack of sleep & showers, crying and dirty diapers, hurting breasts that are barely get a break, the wishing for the next phase of babylife can set in. But that 3, 6, 9-month mark will come all too fast. The time we have to protect, instruct and influence them is short. Lord help us as moms to see thru your eye. To see. To see the gift of each day, hour and moment.


Laugh Often. My own kids antics can quickly push me over the line of sanity when I stop looking at how can this be funny? When I view questions as interruptions, when I view a tired or sick child as a kink in my day I had planned on paper. As I sit typing this up, I watch our 4th and most rambunctious, always loud child, slowly and diligently sorting and lining up his crayons in perfect order in his school box. How many moments have I robbed him and myself of joy for being annoyed that the crayons where on the floor and snapped to pick them up. I saw a wall decal just this week that said "Boy: noise covered in dirt." It made me laugh and brought a fresh breath and new retinas for me as I washed clothes covered in sand and cat poop. As I washed boots that had been filled to the brim with gravel, as I had to tell the boys to put on clean underwear, wash their hands, not to wear their socks 2 days in a row, to take the karate outside, that "no we were eating only meat for supper", that if I can smell them from more than 20 feet away from all the grease from them working on the trailer it didn't matter that it wasn't bedtime, it WAS bathtime. There is a time to laugh and oftentimes it is when we least feel like it.


Love Always. This new baby coming into the Hudson's home is going to be a tangible gift of love from God. Babies are so easy to love and overwhelm us with emotions. To love so deeply a child you have only seen for mere seconds. That we have loved since the instant the lines turned pink. From the first kick in mommas tummy. It is an echo of the Lord's heart for each of us. May we follow the Lords instructions to pursue righteousness in our own hearts as we lead our children to Him.


"The parent must always self-parent first, self-preach before child-teach. Christ incarnated in the parent is the only hope of incarnating Christ in the child." - Ann Voskamp. Love produces better results. Love is Jesus's way. By His example we can see how to gently yet passionately and unselfishly love our children.


Lord thank you for the blessing of this baby boy. Not just another child, but another warrior for your Kingdom. Thank you for the gifts you have bestowed in him already. Open the eyes of the Hudson Family to help develop those gifts as you entrust him to their care. May there be plenty of love and laughter even in the days of long nights and overflowing laundry. May Elijah and Maddie take on the role of mentors to their younger sibling. Thank you for the gift of relationships and children. May we love like you. Amen.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Quick Update

We are moved and not settled and will be moving again in the next 2 months. Or at least that is our personal goal. Allen's new job has relocated us out of state and back to my hometown. The house we are planning to move into is a HUD home so it is taking a little longer to close than what anyone thought. For the time being we are staying with my parents. Thankfully they are very hospitable. After closing there is some work to do before we can move in, or at least before I want to move in. Everything is in storage at this point other than the box of clothes that each person has to live out of. There is still much to be done...new driver's licences....tags...storage building and business back in Arkansas. The kids are enjoying swimming lessons, volleyball camp, and most of all grandma and grandpa.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Thank you Kaldi, the Goat Herder

After 4 hrs of sleep last night, I would just like to give a shout out to Kaldi the Goat Herder for your wonderful observation skills and sharing the wealth of your knowledge.

Also like to say a huge THANK YOU to Allen's grandma as she came over today, helped with meals and swept and mopped and held Wesley a lot in spite of his almost incessant protesting for me. Thank you so much grandma! Which Here's a funny video about cleaning with kids in the house. The story of my life.

Wyatt and Makensie got physicals and shots today. Thankfully the Dr. & her staff know us since Wyatt was wearing the pair of jeans with both knees ripped out, sporting 2 days worth of dirt and I'm pretty certain he was wearing the same underwear he had on BEFORE his bath on Tuesday. The homemade tattoos in green marker all over his back, hands & feet compliments of Gabby were generously pointed out by Makensie. Wyatt is walking slower than normal at this point from the "holes poked in his legs"and Makensie did really well until the time came and then jumped down off the table and asked if we could come back on a different day. Poor things. They should be singing thanks that I opted out of the chicken pox vac and from entering Makensie in the "One less" club. I think we'll shoot for the "Secret Keeper Girl" club instead.

The girls had their friend, Precious Jewel, over to play.

Enjoyed the card swap tonight although we (all 5 kids & I) chose to leave before getting asked to leave. Wyatt dancing and rolling around all over their stage was quite impressive I am sure. Not to mention the rice crispy treats were served on glass dishes.

This week has been one of those weeks filled with arguing and bickering and a mysterious ear virus that causes my voice to be unheard in anyone's little ears. I may just go sit in the Swagger Wagon and listen somewhat loudly to Pink's song and get it out of my system and come back in to do some more laundry:)

You Don't Know What You Got till It's Gone."

I am tired. This has been a long and rewarding day that started 23 1/2 hours ago. I got up at 4am to feed Wesley and could not go back to sleep. I did get some much needed quiet time though. I don't sleep well with Allen gone. I saw a sign that made me laugh and thought I might need to write this and put by our door. It said, "Prayer gets you in touch with God, trespassing will get you there quicker." :)






Got some smiles from Mr. Serious.



Gabby gave me a good laugh today when she was playing with Wesley and trying to teach him to say, "Hi!" and then tells me, "I sure hope that when Wesley starts talking he doesn't speak Spanish and does speak English." As if it's already in there we're just waiting to see what comes out. lol.



Got to briefly see a precious friend who is so amazingly giving much time and love to those affected by the tornado in West Siloam and Joplin. She has such a huge heart.



Today was Day 1 of the challenge to pray daily for my husband during the month of June, following the Power of the Praying Wife book. I didn't start on Chapter 1 because I decided to start where I left off in Chapter 28 - His Self Esteem. This was timely with Allen starting a new job and letting his business go I know he's had some self doubts and yet he knows well what he is doing. I prayed this morning for encouragement for him and confidence not to be shaken. And at noon he called and received a good 2 week report along with the company sending him out to California as a field representative. I am so proud of him. I am so thankful that the Lord gave him a boost in a tangible way and that the new company is seeing so much in him.





A dear friend who didn't mind me dropping off the boys half dressed with a bag of clothes in hand and dirty from head to toe, kept them for me to play Lego's and do boy stuff, while the girls and I went to my post baby 6 week follow up appointment now that we are at the 10 week mark. I thought about foregoing it completely since I missed it by a month, however despite the always humbling appointment, I was glad I went. I have so enjoyed the Dr and his staff over the last 11 years.


On the way home the kids and I stopped off at Barnett's Dairyette for ice cream and hamburgers....for one last time. Was an added bonus to run into a friend and her kiddos there. I found myself even wanting to buy a t-shirt with their name on the front. As if I am a tourist. The old saying, "You don't know what you got until it's gone." is so true for me right now.




Everywhere I look I see things in a different perspective now.

There is so much I want to do and then there is the list of things I need to do. I want to get together and have a pot luck with everyone, (all 4 of our friends:), before we leave town. I have been asked by 5 people for info on coupons and shopping in the last 2 weeks and I would like to actually teach a couponing class (I have decided I want a shirt that says I couponed before couponing was cool!) I want to go to the park and let the kids play and go again to the library and and and...



Allen's Grandma is coming over to spend the day with us tomorrow to hold baby and to help me. I have to say I'm feeling a little uncomfortable with her coming over to do anything but just hang out. Who hands their husband's grandmother a broom and mop and tells her to get busy? Allen told me that MY mom is spoiling him by doing his laundry and cooking for him each night. I thought it was funny that when she does it he considers it spoiling and when I do those things, he calls them, "woman's work". Not to mention that MY mom rubbed RUBBED Allen's feet down with icy hot last night so that after it was on he would not have to get up to wash his hands. Nice. My mom is serving my husband and I'm working Allen's grandma. Talk about feeling like the bad guy.


Gabby and I just finished up the craft project I am taking to a swap tomorrow night. And yes, I realize it is 2:30am and yes, I know that most parents do not let their kids stay up this late, and yes, that is why no one calls me for parenting advise:) It was however perfect and much needed one on one time for both of us doing something we love. The hostess, and my dear friend, Trish almost crossed me off attending, but I wanted to get to participate with these ladies...just one more time. I did not make cards this time however, instead I made these cute little things.


There are 10 sets of 6.



Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Wounded

We each have a different message that haunts us through our lives. Satan knows us. He knows what our destiny is and he knows how to cut deep to discourage us. He won’t bring adversity and pain to us just once, and he isn't random in those attacks. If you’ll look at your hurts, there is a theme to his attacks, to make sure we get the message loud and clear. It starts with our own parents, friends and peers, strangers, and then it carries over into our marriages.

Think for a minute if you have ever had any of these thoughts towards yourself:

I’m not good enough
Someone else does it better
No one will miss me
If I were a better wife or mom or Christian I would be loved more
I feel lonely and I don’t know why
I wish I did not want to be romanced
If people knew the real me they would not love me.
I’m not worthy of being loved
Every time I open myself up I get hurt.
I don’t want to be a burden
No one ever chooses me 1st

My personal message started being memorized. “I am not enough to absolutely be head over heels in love with, to be set aside as precious and valued. If those that know me best do not love me, what is wrong with me? How can God delight in me when he knows me completely? How can I trust Him that I’m of value to Him? Am I second choice? Does He love me because He has to? Am I worth the effort?" Almost as if living in a world where I’m just waiting for everyone to grown tired and leave me.

It is so much easier to believe these statements than the truth which is that we are wonderful, beautiful, delighted in, loved, protected, and desired.

We have been identifying and praying about stepping out into our callings and to go forth. It is powerful to identify the theme of destroying messages in our lives so that we are quick to separate and recognize each individual spiritual battle we are in rather than accepting it to be truth.

Start with your current situations of hurt, then work your way backwards. What is the message that has been etched on your heart that is so hard to shake? Think about the desires of your heart. What adversity comes your way when you follow in obedience to your calling? Think about your love language. These can all be tools used to come against you.

My hearts passion has long been to encourage and uplift other women. Each time I have stepped out to lead a study or speak, that is when I feel the heat. My love language is words, and I can live off a compliment for weeks. But it is by words that I’m also deeply wounded. My attacks have been through words from friends, family, my husband, and most often myself. Those I trust the most. Satan will bring up my own flaws and failures so that I start questioning what I even have to offer other women. Choosing to back off and fly below the radar. Unnoticed. Uneffective.

Even in our failures, the Lord can use us and has a plan. Through my own flaws and trials I hope that other women will be encouraged that they are not alone. All through the scriptures God used men and women not because their perfect track record, but because of their hearts towards Him and some that only He saw potential in.

Monday, May 30, 2011

May 2011

Little Man Wesley

It was a month of many storms. Lots of rain, terrible floods, the Joplin tornado and the reminder of a promise from a loving God.


The last get together of the year and probably the last time for me to have tea with ladies from our homeschool group. I have been so blessed by such wonderful women.

Brian and Wyatt playing "Cops". Brian looking into Wyatt's eyes with the flashlight asked, "Have you had anything to drink today?" Wyatt told him, "Chocolate milk". Then Brian asked him, "have you thrown gasoline on yourself or anyone else today." :)


Wyatt (yes this is his current uniform of choice most days because he daddy has an outfit just like this). Wyatt repurposed Allen's ear protectors that he wears while shooting. They are now for blocking out bossy sisters and crying baby.Year End Pizza Party for the Elementary Homeschool Group. I feel so honored that I got to serve as the coordinator for the past 2 years. I also was choked up most of the day thinking this was probably the last night my kids would get to spend time with a lot of these families. Thank you Lord for another month.









































Thursday, May 26, 2011

Haunted by a Question

When I recently received an email asking if I would be willing to share what I’ve been learning thru the book, “Captivating” by John & Stasi Eldridge, I sat and stared at the words on the screen. The words, “would you be willing to share? Could just as easily have said, “Are you ready to risk adversity and open yourself up to satan’s attacks and the Lord honoring your obedience with growth by stretching and pruning you?” I prayed about it and felt like I could do this and know upfront I was prepared for the trials should they come. I slowly typed in “yes”, and then hit the “send” button. It was as if that very action set in motion the start of an intense battle.

What I thought I knew I was going to be able to easily share regarding the insights I have gained from this book; all uplifting to encourage other ladies, became even more personal for me. There are 3 chapters specifically that really spoke to me and followed just what we’ve been talking about over the past year. Those 3 chapters are: Haunted by a question, Wounded, and A Special Hatred.

At our 1st gathering for Healing the Daughters of Zion, Tammy encouraged us to search our childhood hearts and remember our dreams and desires. Challenging us to come out of the dessert and dry land and to walk boldly into that promised land of milk and honey. To be aware that satan will attack the very area that we are called to follow in order make us feel disqualified, shamed and worthless.

Even though we each have different destiny’s to fulfill, we all start with a common question on our hearts, “Am I Captivating? Am I lovely? Do you see me? Do you want to see me?” We see this search starting in every young girls heart, trying to gain attention from their family and especially from their daddy. Playing dress up, dancing, singing etc.

But we grow up. We give up on our hearts desires.

"Women are tired. Drained. But it's not from a life of shared adventures. No, the weariness of women comes from lives that are crammed with routine, with chores, with hundreds of demands. As Chekov said, "any idiot can face a crisis. It's the day to day living that wears you out." Somehow, somewhere between our youth of yesterday, efficiency has taken the place of adventure. Most women do not feel they are playing an irreplaceable role in a great Story. Oh, no. We struggle to know if we matter at all. If we are at home, we feel ashamed we don't have a "real life" in the outside world. We are swallowed by laundry. If we have a career, we feel as though we are missing out on more important matters like marriage and children. We are swallowed by meetings."

"Most women doubt very much that they have any genuine beauty to unveil. It is, in fact, our deepest doubt. When it comes to the issues surrounding beauty, we vacillate between striving and resignation. New diets, new outfits, new hair color. Work out; work on your life; try this discipline or that new program for self-improvement. Oh, forget it. Who cares anyway? Put up a shield and get on with life. Hide. Hide in busyness; hide in church activities; hide in depression. There is nothing captivating about me. Certainly not inside me. I'll be lucky to pull it off on the outside." - Captivating, pg 44-45

Do you feel beautiful and captivating with your husband? Strangers? Friends?

What about the Lord?

With each pass in front of the mirror we are quickly reminded of each of our outside flaws and while those we can often hide with a new dress, an pretty lipstick, it is that deep heart loss and void that is almost too much to hope for fulfillment. But why the hurt and emptiness?

From the Eve, was easily enchanted with the lies of the enemy and how quickly she was convinced that God was not on her side and had her best in mind. She decided to take control for herself. And because of the Fall, the Curse on women was to have loneliness, want control and be dominated by man.

Aren't our deepest heartaches relational? Don't we all feel the hairs on the backs of our necks rustle when we feel vulnerable? How many times have you felt trapped or hurt and instantly that anger surges up inside and the need to take control, be on top, not look like the fool taken over? But by trying to push down that vulnerability we end up loosing our alluring, tender, feminine and merciful characteristics. Our world in today often rewards the "Get it done, in control" woman. However, consider that this is not truly living and a lack of trust in God. It is robbing the world of the precious self we are trying to hide and protect.

There is also the opposite pendulum swing of the desolate woman. Hiding from being noticed, never speaking up, not building relationships because they could end up hurting us. Quietly slipping into nothingness.

We start to indulge in little things trying to fulfill our hearts, shopping, eating, gambling, drinking, cleaning, working, working out, novels, movies, affairs. Or do we go to the familiar and comfortable self-doubt, condemning, shamed thoughts of ourselves? Giving our hearts away rather than giving them over to God. It make take the pain away for a brief time but it is creating an addiction stronger than drugs to go back to that same place for fulfillment. Losing touch with our hearts and our longing for God. What do you go when that ache in your heart shows up?

We all know we are not what we are meant to be. We all fear that we'll be truly known and then we'll not be loved. But rather than during our hearts back to the Lord and asking him to answer these haunting questions, we turn to other things and people who will hurt us and then we have an ongoing cycle that never fulfills that longing in us. We each set ourselves up for terrible heartbreak.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

There is a Time and Season for Everything

After being self-employed for 6 years and going thru all the joys, frustrations, feasts and famine. Allen was physically and mentally worn down. He had a couple of job offers in Tulsa, OK and while I didn't say no, I, in my best non-outwardly-hormonal-just-had-a-5th-baby-hysterical are you crazy?-way, relayed that if we were going to be moving, I would prefer it not be to a large town in which we knew absolutely no one. Please. Honey.

We have tried to move closer to my family on a couple occasions however the doors have never opened and we had in turn all but given up on that as an option.

So 2 weeks ago we sent out a couple of applications to Kansas and within a weeks time Allen had 2 interviews and one offer. He agreed to take the job, although my heart ached to think of him taking a job that is not in line with his interest just to pay the bills. And it was a wonderful company and a good fit for many men.

He went to Kansas just 2 days ago to go thru orientation and a drug test. He had planned to leave to come home by noon. However, my sister asked to take Gabby shopping for the afternoon so Allen decided to stay there for the afternoon. Shortly after noon, the 2nd company he had interviewed with called and asked to meet him again, without even knowing he was in town that day. God is a God of the 11th hour. That 2nd company offered a long term vision in the line of work that Allen is versed in, with better hours for our family and better pay. So yesterday he accepted this opportunity and Monday he will be starting. It just so happened that Friday the transmission on his glass truck went out. Almost as if to stay, it is finished.

There are so many loose ends and of course the kids and I will be staying here until everything is ironed out.

The last two weeks have left me spinning. At our last months Healing the Daughters of Zion bible study, Tammy shared that God prunes out of our lives what is replacing Him in our hearts. Then one early morning I was feeding baby and having a little T.D. Jakes time and he talked on that same subject. Repeated messages made me wonder what God had in store for me.


You would think that I would be excited to move home and closer to my parents, who my dad was recently diagnosed with Leukemia, and my two sisters and brother and their families. To get to mend and build relationships with those I haven't had the chance to do so. For our kids to have a extended family close by. Not to mention the hope of having an actual date night compliments of grandma. But there was a pain.


I quickly discovered what the Lord was pruning me of….my comfort zone, my friends, my little homeschool supporting, Christian community. I felt an intense grieving. The verse a neighbor close by is better than a brother far away had become a way of life for us. Our friends and community had become our family. There is nothing wrong with that. However, I also realized that I had allowed my friends to replace the Lord as my priority in times of trouble. I would run to them sometimes before I had really spent some time in prayer about issues.

It was in my tears I had a vision of standing alone, naked before the Lord with only Him to clothe me with love. I had based a lot of my worth, my joy, my importance on the level of admiration I received from my friends. I found myself now being stripped away of my safety net. How could I possibly move somewhere that I may be seen as an outcast for being too religious? How could I move and start over, being a no one, having few friends? No large homeschool group with activities for the kids. The Lord will remove from our lives whatever is replacing him, if we will hand him the pruning sheers and trust that He knows the best design.

I am going to be placed in a position to quiet my soul and find my worth in HIM. I'm closing the door on one very wonderfully blessed season in my life and praying that as I move into this next season that it is God's perfect timing to use us to fulfill His plans for our family.

Life is good. Busy, but good.

Wesley Allen



Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Church or be church

One hundred religious persons knit into a unity by careful organizations do not constitute a church any more than eleven dead men make a football team. The first requisite is life, always ~~~Tozer~~~


I saw this quote recently. How true. How many of us are Sunday morning and Wednesday evening Christians, then the rest of the week behind closed doors our love for the Lord isn't enough to make us repent and live a consistent and fruitful life every day that will glorify Him. Would we openly act, speak or live the same way in our homes or with friends that we present ourselves as in the Church building? Christ said that WE christians are the church. Not just at certain times each week but always.

Lord increase my love for you so that I have no desire to live in any way but one that honors you. Let the life we live be one that others will desire to be around to know that fulfillment that only comes from knowing you. Let us be an example at all hours to those we don't even realize are watching. Help me remember today that I have a ministry when I'm loading the dishwasher and doing paperwork that I'm serving my family and how they see me react and speak to them will reflect You.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Waiting

I haven't been writing much at all lately. I miss it. I have found myself substituting status on FB as a quickly way to update, however fear how much I'm forgetting to jot down the fun things in life in a permanent place.

We have 16 days from today for our official "due date" for this little man. And honestly I wouldn't be offended if he decided to make his appearance a little sooner. I have always loved being pregnant, however have found myself sick, hurting to the point of barely walking or struggling with migraines for the past 8 1/2 months. It has been discouraging and exhausting all in one. Thank goodness we moms tend to forget all that when we hold that precious little baby and kiss and smell their warm little heads and chubby fingers and rock their tiny bodies against us as they sleep so contently. We look forward to the gift of a new baby and selfishly I'm looking forward to walking normally again:)

Monday, January 24, 2011

I don't want to forget

I have not been good at keeping up with my journaling. Life has gotten busy, but those little precious moments and comments still come and I so want to remember them verses letting them be lost.

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After going to see a friend's 5 day old baby, on the way home, I asked Gabby if it made her excited about our little one coming in just 8 weeks. She said, "Well, I'd be more excited if it was a girl, but ya get what ya get."

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Each of the kids have a prayer journal and once every week or so we go back thru and cross off anything we have received an answer on or changed our minds about. This morning after Brian and I's time together and marking off several requests, he commented, "It's so cool. It's like almost anything I add to the prayer list and pray about gets an answer. I should totally pray more."

Which allowed me to mark off a little request for Brian to understand the power of prayer off my list.

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Wyatt has turned a corner on his communication. While once a very quiet little man, he now is talking non stop. He is also said quite a few very cute, (only because it is coming from a 3 year olds mouth), little comments.

"No way Jose!"
"Oh, that's just GREAT!" (in a sarcastic tone)
"Hey woman!" (referring to me)
"That is absolutely amazing."
And tattling on me to dad...."mom poked my eye out and won't give it back."

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