Thursday, June 23, 2011


I've been wrestling with the idea of self-absorption lately. All of the small groups at our church are going through this 8 week long study called The Tangible Kingdom. A couple of days ago the day's lesson asked us to "Spend some time today in a busy place. Simply sit still and look at the faces that go past you. Imagine some of the things that might make up their life stories. Pray for them." As I sat contemplating (insert whining) about how this wasn't possible, since a small child was under my care and watchful eye, it hit me "Listen to yourself April. All you care about is me, myself, and I. When was the last time you actually cared about the people around you?"

According to the US Census Bureau there are almost 7 billion people living in the world today, 300 million of them live in the US. I make up 1/7 billion and my immediate family makes up 3/7 billion, I don't even want to attempt the math when it comes to getting that into decimal form. Somehow though I continue to live like the other 6,999,999,999 don't exist. Why is that?

I know my family is important and God has called me to take care of them. I also know there's no possible way for me to get to know or even attempt to know all the people on this planet, but where do I find the balance? Lately I've been so concerned about all the things I want to get done, or what my baby needs, or what would be best for my family that I've completely forgotten about everyone else. So I know what I'm doing isn't right, but how do I know when it's ok to guard time with my family and when I need to just give it a rest and go hang out with friends/neighbors? How do I teach my baby that she's important to me but she's not the end all be all for our family?

Last night one of the guys in our small group shared that he felt like God was saying the same thing to him lately. He said he felt like God was specifically saying to him "Stop looking in the mirror and start looking out the window." My prayer yesterday, today, and for a long time honestly, is that God would open my eyes up to see what He sees and that not only would I see but I would respond to what he's showing me. No more ignoring people because I don't want to make them uncomfortable (or let's be honest here, make myself uncomfortable), no more "to do" lists that make me so focused on all the things I have to do, that I don't stop to see God working in the faces around me.

Expect similar posts as this revelation continues to unfold, I'm not ignorant in thinking I won't continue to struggle with this the rest of my life, but I am hopeful that God can change my heart. Feel free to pass on any advice you've learned along the way too. I certainly know I'm not the only one trying to figure this whole "how to live life" thing.

Friday, June 10, 2011

The Infamous Pity Party

I know how to throw a good party. A pity party that is. It starts out something like this "Nothing ever goes my way" or "Nobody likes me" and unfortunately it only goes down hill from there. Imagine for a second a snowball rolling down one of the Rocky Mountains, as it rolls it picks up more and more snow and by the time it's at the bottom it's gotten so big it can crush you. Welcome to my life.

Most of the time I love being a woman. I love the privilege of being a mom and a wife, doing girly things, and so so much more but there are times I literally despise it. Like when I'm alone with my thoughts and all my mind can dwell on is the negative. Don't get me wrong I recognize life is hard. People are messy. I'm messy. Lately I've found myself longing for the restoration that Jesus will bring when He returns to Earth. But I can not allow myself to keep living this way. The snowball is waiting.

God promises in Philippians 4:6-7 "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." This *coincidentally* enough is one of my memory verses so far this year. As I seek to move out of the way of the snowball or heck, get rid of it all together, I am realizing more and more I not only need to know God's promises but be willing to put them into action and BELIEVE them.

It's quite easy for me just to memorize them. There's a part of me (let's be honest there's a whole lot more than just a part), that loves the feeling you get when you accomplish something. If my husband would let me I honestly think I would put a star chart on my refrigerator recording every verse I memorize (identity or self worth problem you say? we'll save that for another post). But if I got a star for every time I applied those truths to my life and believed them, my chart would be empty. Unfortunately I let my emotions and feelings get in the way and before long I've completely forgotten what God has to say about it all. Lately my prayer has been that when those thoughts flood my mind I would look to Him first rather than that snowball. And maybe, just maybe, some day I'll throw a "no more pity parties" party.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Summer Loving

It's summer time and the living's easy. At least that's how things go here in Blacksburg. It's sort of a ghost town with the large majority of Virginia Tech students scattered across the land for the summer. I have to admit it's not really my favorite time of year. A lot of "the locals" love it because you can park anywhere downtown without driving in circles for 3o minutes trying to find a spot, go to any restaurant you'd like with virtually no wait, and enjoy all the benefits of living in a small town. Besides the fact that there is no line at Chipotle (good for my tummy, bad for my wallet) I could care less about those things. I really enjoy having students around but I'm learning to appreciate life for where I am now and not where I think the grass is greener.

So here I sit on the "veranda" of our local Starbucks, enjoying the cool summer breeze with a little Matt Wertz streaming through my headphones.

(Forgive the lack of makeup and baseball cap friends, it's been a long day)

It's my weekly "me" time thanks to my precious husband and I'm blogging, what the heck? I did a little self evaluation last week and discovered writing is something that I actually really enjoy, whether I'm good at it or not is still up in the air. If you looked at my blog lately perhaps you wouldn't think that but life hasn't been quite what it used to be the past five months either (love you Sadie).

I watched a video by Jon Acuff a few weeks ago and he mentions the "all or nothing" principle that most bloggers adopt. He says they either commit to posting daily (which quickly gets overwhelming unless you're getting paid for it) or they leave their blog deserted for months on end, there's simply no happy medium.

Hello that's me, guilty as charged, as evidenced by my complete failure at the 100 joys challenge. So I'm stepping forward with a realistic goal this time. I'm *hopefully* making a commitment to blog one or two times a week from here on out. Maybe I'll even throw a few 100 joys posts into the mix. Who's excited? This girl.