Tuesday, November 30, 2010


At the time that I accepted that my life was falling to pieces, I reverted to Catholicism after being an evangelical Protestant since I was 15.  My conversion, or reversion, was a process that God started in my heart about a year and a half earlier.  There were several things that held me back before, and as my life started to crumble apart, I ran home to the Church that my Lord has prepared for me 2,000 years ago.  It was been a beautiful, absolutely magnificent reunion for me.  I could go on and on about it, but I will post more on that later.

My oldest little boy, Todd, turned six not too long ago.  I enrolled him in the same Catholic school that I attended when I was little.  He has only been going to Mass for about five months, and it has been a transition for all of my kids.  They used to have children's church at our Protestant churches, and they were entertained there while we attended service.  So for my then five-year old to go from that to having to sit for an hour and be quiet during Mass, well, it was quite a difficult transition.  And he is going to Mass twice a week, once with his school on Tuesdays and once with me and his brothers on Sunday.  So it's been a challenge for him.

Todd is a very special boy.  He has always studied people and their emotions.  He is reflective and contemplative.  He is loving and kind, and he has the best manners of any kid I know. 

But he is six yeears old.  Mass is boring to him.  When you're a six-year old little boy attending a Catholic church for the first time in your life, it is boring and almost like torture compared to what he experienced before. 

Every Sunday morning I race around getting everyone cleaned and ready to go to Mass.  Every Sunday morning Todd complains about having to go to Mass and explains why he doesn't want to go (again, because it's boring).  I usually explain to him that it is very important that we worship God and tell him that it is very important to me for us to attend Mass.  Sometimes I explain to him (briefly, because I am not sure how much he can take in right now) that it is important for me to go there and receive the Body and Blood of Christ.  I am not sure how much he understands, but I can tell he often thinks about what I just said. 

This Sunday he complained that all Mass is is sitting and standing and kneeling.  I knelt down beside him and explained that it is so much more than that.  I explained that while he is sitting quietly and standing quietly and kneeling quietly, that maybe something will happen to him on the inside, and I put my hand over his heart.  I told him that the reason that I love going to Mass is because of what happens to me on the inside.  I told him it is very special and from God.  I wasn't sure if he understood, but he stopped his complaining.  Maybe it was so that I would stop the lecture.  But I was glad I had explained it to him so that he could remember it the next time he felt like complaining about Mass.  I was happy to be touching on the real "meat" of faith: what happens on the inside.  It was a great seed that I felt like I had planted, although Todd never said anything about it.

Last night as he was waiting for me to tuck him into bed, he shoved his fists up in the air and said, "Yes!  I get to go to Mass tomorrow!"  (He has Mass with his class on Tuesday mornings.)  I was shocked to hear the excitement coming from him.  I didn't make a big deal of it, because I was just literally too shocked for words.

So I contemplated it and asked him this morning about what seemed to be excitement from him about going to Mass.  He grinned and admitted that he likes Mass.  When I asked why, he replied, "Because I get to sing and worship God."  Again, I was absolutely speechless.

How special it that?!?!

I am so blessed to have this special little guy who amazes me beyond words.  My heart is warmed to a higher degree this morning.  There are no words to express the gratitude that I feel to my Lord for such an amazing gift.

Kyrie eleison

Saturday, November 27, 2010

between a rock and a hard place...

So, I have some big decisions to make for me and the boys in the future.  Right now I am waiting on God.  I am in no hurry to make the decisions until I know it's time.  

Boy, waiting is hard.

Something happened the other day that left me feeling hopeless.  I have developed a numbness that allows me to "stay strong" and not cry like a baby every day.  But that night I went to bed crying.  A big part of me wanted to give up.  But giving up means taking some steps that I never ever wanted to take in my life.  The phrase, "between a rock and a hard place" entered my mind, and that's how I felt.  I cried to God to tell me what to do.  And then I listened, hoping I'd hear His voice.  But I heard nothing.

The next day we did our usual routine.  I took my 3-year old to his speech therapist's home that morning before going into work.  After his therapy, his therapist walked out to the car with us, offering to help load the boys, talking to my 22-month old.  She never walks to the car with us.  And it was a cold morning.  She had no shoes or socks on and no jacket.  So I thought it was odd that she was even out there with us.

After I loaded the boys up, she said something to me.  She said that she wanted to encourage me not to give up.  I knew instantly within the core of my being that it was from God, and my eyes started watering.  She asked to pray with me, and what she prayed was exactly what was going on in me.  I thanked her and told her I needed to hear it.

Sometimes I want to be "special" and hear God's audible voice so that I know that I know that I know it's Him.  But then it wouldn't be faith, would it?  Maybe the second best scenario is for Him to send a message through one of His believers.  

So now I know the path I am supposed to be on right now, and that's not to give up.  And I heard it from God himself.  And that's all I need to know right now.

Kyrie eleison!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


I got a new camera a couple of months ago, and it's been a lot of fun playing around with it.  By no means do I see any amount of talent in anything that I photograph, but it is a fun challenge to learn a new hobby.  I don't have very much spare time these days, so just reading the instruction booklet is a slow process.  It just doesn't happen much.  For example, I picked this particular camera because it had a video camera function.  I have to yet to find that function.  I wonder if I got suckered. 

Here are a couple of pictures of my favorite subjects (no critics, I know it's not top quality photography):

Eli and Isaac

Todd, Isaac, and Eli

(They really are as sweet as they look!)


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

the stakes are officially high

"Your bid--for God or no God, for a good God or the Cosmic Sadist, for eternal life or nonentity--will not be serious if nothing much is staked on it. And you will never discover how serious it was until the stakes are raised horribly high."

--C. S. Lewis, A Grief Observed 

Um.  Excuse me.  I am pondering these words.  This one got me in the gut.


Monday, November 1, 2010

I don't want to lose me

My life isn't what it was a couple of years ago.  This is certainly not the way I planned things.  But I don't have control over people, and people are people, so here I am.  

I have been through a lot of pain lately.  I have tried the best I know how to protect my beautiful boys from experiencing their pains, too.  I wonder what lies ahead for us.  I hurt.  I cry.  

I have known for a while that I am different than people around me.  I feel compassion in ways not like others.  I love life and I love the gifts that I've been given in the people who love me and whom I love.  I see the love that God has for others.  I see the beauty in the everyday living.  I trust to the point of being taken advantage of.  

I am afraid of losing that.

I am afraid of losing the gentle person that I am.  I am afraid of becoming hard and pessimistic.  I am afraid of becoming a bitter old woman who always has something negative to say because of the hurts I've experienced and not seeing good in anything or anyone any longer.  I am afraid of turning off my feelings so that I don't have to get hurt anymore.

I don't want to become that person.  I'd rather stay who I am and see the good in people.  And maybe get hurt again in the process.  I'd rather keep trusting, even when it means I am vulnerable.  I want to stay the kind of person who effortlessly has a smile on my face while I am amid chaos.  Don't get me wrong - it's not a fake smile.  It's a smile that acknowledges that there is more good in life than bad.  I want to continue seeing the good. 

Kyrie Eleison!