Friday, April 29, 2011

Storms

We got a rather terrifying lightening storm night before last...and after watching the insane weather on radar just barely miss us, and talking to friends and family who were not so lucky over the last couple of days, am I the only one who starts thinking The Book of Revelation?

There were some big, bad tornados that have decimated lot of the south that typically do not get hit by any such storms. I have friends that actually had their house lifted and moved 4-5 feet and then dropped by the tornado...destroying it. I am thankful to say that not one of their family were there, they were in their church basement...but all of their stuff is all a loss.

Many of my family and friends have no power and do not anticipate it being restored for a week. One friend has been charging her phone in her car, and posted on Facebook that they were warming water over candles for coffee...thankful that they were safe.

Whole strips of neighborhoods, buildings, and schools are literally gone. Forests have been razed...hundred year old trees snapped like matchsticks.

A friend from high school posted that she went to her parents' damaged house today and they have heard the cadaver dogs searching all day. They can see nothing but destruction everywhere they look.

Today another friend posted that her husband (who is a contractor) has been let go from his job...which I find bizarre (the entire area is going to be rebuilding from the ground up...who do they think will be doing this??) But in the face of the desolation, how awful would it be to get that phone call??

I have been emotionally tossed about over the last few days...I virtually never watch TV (when it is on, we are usually streaming from Netflix) but yesterday I spent the day searching Facebook for friends posting that they were safe, or reporting that they had talked to other friends...I watched the news for pictures, information, and reports of the damage. Today I have watched the Royal Wedding and the reports of the damage...the highs and lows are making me feel manic depressive...I am feeling darn blessed that my life is boring, normal, and safe.

Repeat after me:
I am blessed. My family is safe. I have a home. (even if it is dirty!) I have electricity. My fridge is full of food that has not spoiled. I can microwave said food. I know where my clothes are. I can bathe and wash my clothes. I can contact my loved ones. I can go to the store and know it is standing. I and/or my spouse have a job. I do not hear cadaver dogs searching for the lost. I can give blood. I can donate to those who have nothing. I still have time to tell those I care about that I love them. I have hope. I know what is important. I can cry and celebrate with others. I know who has His Hand on me and that I deserve nothing....that I am blessed to have HIM.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Princesses

When I was a kid, the term "princess" was a call to proper behavior, and not in the way you would think. Like, "You are not a princess, go clean your room." or "You are not a princess, you need to help your mother set the table/make supper/dust...etc"

I resented it. I mean really, REALLY resented it. Being a princess was such a lovely concept and it was used for rebuke. It was one of few things that I swore I'd not do as a parent that I actually made good on. Most of the "Swearings" have failed because I grew up and realized that my folks were right. There have been a lot of "I'm really sorry I was ugly to you...you were right...it makes sense now..." phone calls made to my mother.

I told my parents that the Princess Reprimand would come to a screeching halt when I had Elise. I found a line at my local Bible bookstore while I was still pregnant with her that had a "Princess" line based on being "The King of Kings" daughter. I thought it was amazingly cool. To their credit, they have backed me on this decision. To the point that my mom and dad bought a Princess Bible for the girls for their Easter basket illuminating the Princess qualities that each woman in the Bible brought that we should imitate. (SO cool...I highly recommend it!!)

I wish I could put my finger on why princesses have such a fascination for us as a gender. I don't think it is the power, or the dresses, or the handsome prince, as many have suggested. I think it is the treasuredness, the belovedness, and the protection that is placed around the position. I really do.

I am looking forward to the Royal Wedding tomorrow. You know, Kate Middleton to Prince William of England...House of Windsor and all that...

I do not have an obsession that many have scorned on the internet...just a healthy interest in someone else's special day. I look forward to them being happy. I look forward to seeing the beautiful cathedral of Westminster Abbey. I look forward to seeing the tears wisked away by the royals, telling us that we are no different deep down. I look forward to the glowing smile of the bride, the victorious pride of the groom. I like the emotions that go on at weddings. I love that they are all the same, no matter the color, the station, or the financials of those getting married. It's a day of joy.

In July of 1981, my mother ripped me from my bed at about 4 am. I do not remember being warned that she would do so. I was not yet 6, and 4 am is VERY early for a 5 year old. I was fed hot chocolate in her best china cup and some kind of baked good as I sat in a bean bag in my basement. My mother and I watched as Lady Diana Spencer married Prince Charles. It was magic. I had never seen a wedding. This one was over the top. A princess!

I treasured that morning. I enjoyed the wedding. It was SO pretty! But the most important part was the hot chocolate and the time with my mama. I was special. I was OLD ENOUGH to get woken up at 4 am and watch a wedding full of beauty and joy....I was old enough to make a memory. I was the real princess.

SO. Tomorrow, guess who is getting woken up for the Royal Wedding? My girls. Charlotte won't remember it, and is a big meanie when woken before her "time", so I'm not going there! I am not banking on Elise, I although I will attempt to get her up to join me. Amelia, however, will be up (she's up by 3:30 in the morning half the time anyway!!)....drinking hot chocolate, and being loved on by myself and my mama, who will be joining us....SHE will be the princess. SHE will remember the time she got to witness her first wedding, and the time with those who adore her....and it will be magical.

And here is a little fun that Disney could not resist putting together in case you are a big sucker like me and want to be cutting or baking all afternoon. I am. I will be cutting out the Kate Paper Doll that will get torn up in about 20 minutes...and Amelia will love every second, so I'm doing it...because it is the time put in that makes the magic...

Sunday, April 24, 2011

He is NOT a Tame Lion

“It isn't Narnia, you know,” sobbed Lucy. “It's you. We shan't meet you there. And how can we live, never meeting you?”
“But you shall meet me, dear one,” said Aslan.
“Are are you there too, Sir?” said Edmund.
“I am,” said Aslan. “But there I have another name. You must learn to know me by that name. This was the very reason why you were brought to Narnia, that by knowing me here for a little, you may know me better there.”
The Voyage of the Dawn Treader 

I believe this explains more concisely than I can my love for the Narnia series. About 3 years ago we started the tradition of watching Narnia: The Lion, The Witch, And The Wardrobe movie on Easter. We always take the time to explain that what Aslan does at the stone table, is just what Jesus did for us on the cross.

Frankly, I think it explains Easter powerfully. The more we have watched it with Easter in the forefront of our minds, the more powerful it is for me, and even the more real the story of the cross and resurrection is to me. The ultimate parable.

The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe
"If the Witch understood the true meaning of sacrifice, she would have interpreted the deep magic differently. That when a willing victim who has committed no treachery, is killed in a traitor's stead, the stone table will crack, and even death itself will go backwards."

"Safe?" said Mr. Beaver."Who said anything about safe? 'Course he isn't safe. But he's good. He's the King, I tell you."

And He is, isn't he? Happy Easter! God is Good and He is risen!! Isn't that just AWESOME???

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Psalm 24 and Earth Day

I was going to save this until tomorrow. This morning Gabriel asked what day it was because he is "supposed" to wear green to celebrate Earth Day tomorrow....

While I don't have anything against celebrating the amazingness of the Earth, it's not it's "mother-ness", but that it is the miraculous creation of the Lord of Heaven, that I am celebrating.

Gabriel will be reading this passage out loud for his sisters tomorrow. I hope you will join me in recognizing WHY the Earth is so spectatular.

"Psalm 24

Of David. A psalm.

1 The earth is the LORD’s, and everything in it,

the world, and all who live in it;

2 for he founded it on the seas

and established it on the waters.

3 Who may ascend the mountain of the LORD?

Who may stand in his holy place?

4 The one who has clean hands and a pure heart,

who does not trust in an idol

or swear by a false god.[a]

5 They will receive blessing from the LORD

and vindication from God their Savior.

6 Such is the generation of those who seek him,

who seek your face, God of Jacob.[b][c]

7 Lift up your heads, you gates;

be lifted up, you ancient doors,

that the King of glory may come in.

8 Who is this King of glory?

The LORD strong and mighty,

the LORD mighty in battle.

9 Lift up your heads, you gates;

lift them up, you ancient doors,

that the King of glory may come in.

10 Who is he, this King of glory?

The LORD Almighty—

he is the King of glory."