Third Sunday of Lent

Gracious Father, we give You praise
And thanks for this Holy Communion
The body and blood
Of Your beloved Son

ah, this is so good. I need this.

Maybe this truth will help me be in a better mood,

give me a better attitude,

help me focus in the right place.

The body is broken
God’s love poured open
To make us new
Lord, make us new

Thank you, Lord.

Thank you for mercy,

for grace.

Abba Father, we bless Your name
And take part in this Holy Communion
Make us all one
To love like Your Son

Yes, Lord.

How my heart longs for that true fellowship of believers.

Wait. Is Phoebe fussing? Didn’t the downstairs neighbor say that she can hear Phoebe crying sometimes? Does she think I’m a terrible mother? I better go make sure Phoebe is okay.

The body is broken
God’s love poured open
To make us new
Lord, make us new

CRASH.

My eyes snap open. Despite the one million times I have told her not to, Ellie has climbed into her doll crib, and, obviously, the bottom fell out.

ALREADY? I just wanted to listen to this one song. I just wanted two minutes and fifteen seconds of peace.

The body is broken
God’s love poured open
To make us new
Lord, make us new

“It’s not your fault, It’s my fault.”

Before I can even open my mouth, my two year old short circuits the thoughts that would’ve made this situation all about me and not about her. All about guilt and not about grace.

And somehow, we have a quiet conversation about how important it is to listen to mommy and to choose to obey, even if my eyes are closed. And I gently remind that little girl that she has her own crib and this one is not it.

And somehow, the bottom of that plastic doll crib fits right back in there and it’s almost like it never broke in the first place.

And somehow, He keeps finding ways to be Immanuel. God right here in our life. The God who came to live with us. The God who isn’t only there when I have a quiet space, ancient prayers, and cup of coffee, but the God who wants to be found. Right smack in the middle of crying babies and disobedient toddlers, if I will only ask to see him. The God who doesn’t need silent spaces or special weekends to change my heart.

The God who is right here in my living room, making me new.

With Child: A Guest Post Series.

The response was overwhelming. Granted, it took a few days. They are all mothers, after all. Each one has a lot on her plate. Those first few days were full of sweaty-handed waiting and continuous phone-checking that would rival any junior-high girl with a serious crush. After more than a year of praying and thinking and dreaming, I was waiting. Waiting to see if anyone’s heart had ever felt the same way mine did. All I had done for months was hope & pray, and once I hit that red send button, there was little I could do but hope & pray some more.

And then the ‘yeses’ started trickling in. Filling up my inbox day by day until there was a yes for every email I sent out.  From women I have shared countless cups of coffee with to women I know almost entirely by the words they write online.  “Yes,” each one wrote, “I will share my story.”

It has been a long time in the making- the gathering of these momma hearts. In different and deep ways, the stories these women are living flood my heart with grace, tug me closer to Jesus, make me a better mom, a better friend, a better wife.

It’s no secret that just a simple Google search will return an overwhelming amount of articles, videos, and websites that might lead us to believe being a momma is actually about the kind of diapers we use, or about how we feed our babies or clothe our babies or birth our babies, or about how many hours we spend at home or at work. I’m beginning to believe that I’m not the only one who forgets that motherhood is mainly about Jesus. How he makes us more like him. How he makes our children more like him. How he makes his name famous. How he accomplishes his mission in the world.  How he allows our families to participate.

WithChild

Over the next ten weeks, you are invited to join us as we tell a different story about Motherhood, as we look for Jesus, specifically in the journeys we take into motherhood.  Each of these sweet women are going to share different stories of the ways that the Lord has used the journey into motherhood to make them more like him, to illuminate the gospel, and to glorify himself. I am so excited to introduce these women to you and to share their stories with you. We are excited to see what the Lord will do with these stories. Each of the next ten Tuesdays, will you join us with a cup of coffee and discover the Jesus in our stories?

how we’re observing lent.

In typical Lindsey fashion, I’m thinking well in advance running around like a crazy person, wishing I would’ve remembered that Lent was coming a week ago. I’m not going to argue for participating in Lent in this post, because I’m firmly convinced and it wasn’t the words of any human who convinced me, it was simply in the doing that I realized how much I need it. And every year as I look forward to it, I remember when it seemed like an empty practice, and how it wasn’t until the first time I observed it that I realized how much missing out on Lent can mean missing out on Easter.  But if you’re interested in it or you want to know more about it, Ann Voskamp has some helpful words.

I know Eliana is young. I know Phoebe is even younger. I know that they don’t yet grasp the meaning of the church calendar or the things that we’ll do during Lent, but I also think that it’s important that we observe this season as a family, so I’ve made an effort to find a few things that will help us talk about Lent and participate in it in our daily lives.

For the Grown Ups

The first is something that’s just for me. I’m going to be making an effort to follow the She Reads Truth Lent study. I got the first day half-way done while I was feeding Phoebe this morning, and I’m really excited about this. You can get access to it on the app for a small price, but if you follow it online or via email, it’s free. Just visit the link above to sign up.

David and I are also going to be going through Reliving the Passion by Walt Wangerin Jr. When we were engaged, we went through another of Walt Wangerin’s books with some dear friends who were mentoring us.  We read yet another of his books aloud to one another after finding it at a thrift store on our honeymoon. We love that guy.

For Our Family

For our family, I found this resource, which is a reading plan that takes you through the Jesus Storybook Bible (up to the resurrection) during Lent/Easter. We have been trying to start (or end) our day with a reading, song, and prayer. I think Lent will be a good opportunity to build that habit.

I also found this calendar and this “Lenten Path” for children. My plan is to print out the path and then add those activities from the calendar to my copy, adjusting to make them applicable to our family. Each day we’ll color a square of the path and talk a bit about the activity for the day.

Also, I can’t believe I actually nearly forgot this one. Have you heard of The Brilliance? They’re brilliant! (I couldn’t resist.) Their Lent album is one of my favorites. Those songs made up a significant portion of my labor playlist. Because labor is kind of like Lent to me, but that’s possibly another post for another time. We’ll definitely have this one on repeat for the next 40 days.

Also, I was thiiiiis close to trying to hurry up and make an “Alleluia” banner, so we could bury the alleluia, but for a few days now, I’ve been trying to consider the meaning behind that tradition and decide if we’re going to do it, so we’ll see- maybe I’ll just try to have it done for the Easter season, and we’ll have until next year to consider it.

I would love to hear how you are planning to observe Lent with your family.

The View Around Here

This gallery contains 21 photos.

So, with each pregnancy I’ve debated maternity photos and newborn photos, and with each pregnancy I’ve ended up making the same decision: skip the maternity photos and don’t skip the newborn photos. So far, I haven’t been disappointed with my decision. Note … Continue reading