Matt Walsh Blog- “I’m a Christian and I think ‘Noah’ deserves a four star review”

Preeeeeeeeeetty much explains why I won’t be spending a dime on this movie.  

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Little Man

My kid.  I have no idea where he comes up with some of the things he says, but I’m finding it hard to stay one step ahead of him. He’s 3.  THREE! What’s going to happen when he’s 12?! 15?! 20?!

Mercy. 

My LEO and I decided a while back that one was good enough to complete our family. We’re often asked about the timing for #2, and I don’t get annoyed by it.  I am, however, always a little taken aback by their shock.  

“You mean you only want one nowright?”
“No…I mean ever.”

::Cue look from other person that always makes me wonder if I’ve grown antlers::

My one and only little boy.  I’m perfectly ok with just him. He’s enough to keep us busy.  

The things he’s saying now, however, just make me wonder if he has some kind of little internal radio linked to a man much older and wiser.  Sometimes he spits out things that are accidentally insightful (“Ducks don’t talk, mama.  They laugh.”)  Usually, though, they’re just funny.

Yesterday, he and the LEO (off duty) dropped by the police station for a bit.

“Dad, are there officers here?”
“Yes.”
“I’m…I’m scared of officers.”
“What?! Since when are you scared of officers? I AM one!”
“Oh yeah?! Where’s your OFFICER clothes, then?!”  

He never forgets anything, and is always talking about things we did more than  year ago.  Namely, a trip to the zoo in St. Louis. He wears me out, he keeps me laughing and he’s truly unique.  This morning. I laid next to him and just admired what God had done.  This was in the early hours, as he had woke me up singing his ABCs in his sleep.  Totally fine.  He’s such a marvel.

Yesterday I learned so many things about him from turning off the radio, asking random questions and just listening to what he had to say.  

Favorite color? Red

Favorite fruit? Apples

Favorite show? Duh. Spongebob.

Favorite thing for dinner? Dinosaur bones (mac and cheese)

Best friend? Daddy.

Are you sure? Yes.

 

We’ve been trying to get him into pre-school but, due to our making above the poverty line and Little Man having no disabilities, it’s proven impossible. We are paying more for our daycare than we do for our house, and we are ready for a change.  So, now we’re shopping private pre-schools.  I laughed when someone suggested home schooling.  Just because we make above $19,000/yr does NOT mean we can afford for either of us to stay home (and I’m trying to pursue my own law enforcement career).  It’s also not what I feel is best for my child.  I know that whatever doors are opened will be what God has provided for us.  

In the mean time, I’ll continue to be amazed by the work of wonder he is.  The fearfully, wonderfully made art with which we have been so very blessed.

Sons are a heritage from the LORD, children a reward from him.  Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are sons born in one’s youth.  Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them. They will not be put to shame when they contend with their enemies in the gate. Psalm 127:3-5

 

Love,

Brandi

Seriously…

Stop the Crazy!!

Can’t say I completely disagree with this article (normally anything from HuffPo makes me want to face palm. Hard). The meaning of the holidays has become convoluted enough. I shudder to think what the holidays will be like when LM is in grade school.

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God’s Not Ok with Me

A beautiful, wonderful, sweet friend of mine shared this on her Facebook today, from author Lysa TerKeurst:

Say this with me today… God is okay with me even when I’m not okay with me. (And that’s a beautiful truth!)
Lysa didn’t post any scripture with her status, just this sentence.  I read it.  I read it again.  I read it a third, fourth and fifth time.  Then I stared at the wall for a few minutes.  Why did this simple, feel good sentence bother me so much? It’s a wonderful concept, rooted in great intentions… but the whole thing just bugged the snot out of me.
I responded to my friend’s status (though I try not to share such opinions when they aren’t solicited… but this was like a thorn in my foot!) with the following:
So…I read this about 5 times. Chewed on it a bit and thought about it… and here ‘s what I came up with. God isn’t always ok with me, even when I am ok with me. I’m most definitely a work in progress.Paul says, ““In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:4-6

I’ll agree that He *loves* me, even when I don’t love me, and I think *that’s* a beautiful truth.

It wasn’t long before my post was seen, and replied with (by a third person):
God may not be ok with our behavior sometimes, but he is always ok with us because of the work Christ did for us. We may not be ok with our children’s behavior all the time, but we are still ok with them because they are ours.
I respectfully disagree (though I took my own advice and didn’t reply), because I think being “ok” with someone and loving them are two very different things.  While God’s love is unfailing, that doesn’t mean He’s “always ok” with us.  If my son turns out to be a drug addicted bank robber- I will still love him.  That doesn’t mean I’d be “ok” with him. I’d see need for drastic change.  I think God sees the same in us.  Grace covers our sins and, as a child of The Father. I am forgiven.  However, again, that doesn’t mean there isn’t work to be done and growing to accomplish.  I have so much to do, and there is so much to be done in me!  Do I have to be “ok” with Little Man’s decisions to love him? Certainly not.  Will I believe in God’s word, and continue to love the living snot out of him while praying for a direction in his life that aligns with God’s will? Oh, you betcha.  Daily.
I surely wasn’t looking to open a debate on the topic.  I was just very perplexed about the whole thing, and couldn’t let it go for whatever reason.
On the same token but kinda different token (yep), I started thinking about all of those who speak on God’s behalf, often in a seemingly flippant manner.  I’ve always been a little put off by books written in the first person of God’s viewpoint.  I think there’s a Book where He spoke for himself plenty.  Do I think we need to dig deeper, meditate on His word and grow from it? Oh, without hesitation! Yes! I just think we should use a lot of discernment in whom we place our trust to help us form those opinions.
The Bible isn’t all feel good and sugar sweet. I’ll even go as far as to say that “love” isn’t God’s pinnacle attribute (a lesson, learned from my pastor, that has stuck with me).  God’s pinnacle attribute is holiness.  Everyone wants to say God is love and God is just.  Yeah, He is. However, I feel the reason we have both sides is because they’re tied together in Holiness.  You’ve got to take the good with the hard to swallow, but that’s another post for another day.
My point is this- take the Word, the whole Word and nothing but the Word.  Meditate on it, pray about it and beware of cherry picking as we all tend to want to do.  Also, I’m so thankful God isn’t through with me, yet.  We’re fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14), and daily molded to serve His purpose.
Xoxoxo,
Brandi

The Book of Brandi

I’m doing dumb things.

All the time.  A moment or two ago, I had to call a friend and ask her what website my blog was on because I honestly didn’t know.  I’m not sure how long it will take me to live that down, but it’s a drop in the bucket.  Putting Little Man in the car while still wearing my pajamas, forgetting BIG things at work- it’s amazing I know how to spell my name.  

Wait..

Yep. We’re good there, barely. 

I don’t know what’s going on, but I’m a little frightened.  I believe, perhaps, it is stress.  I am at a point where all the cracks in the ice around me have converged and I’m facing one big giant Looney Tunes sized hole.  This morning, I woke up to a text from our Engineer and we were having a major issue at work because I simply left without doing my job.  Not on purpose, but that doesn’t change the fact that it happened.  I told him there’s no way I’d not done what I needed to do, because I do it every day.  Then I realized he was right. I’d not done it. He was up from around 12a-1a trying to fix my mistake.  

I can handle panic when I’m able to put my hands on it and fix it.  However, when someone else has to step up to make up for my own shortcomings, it makes me miserable.  I take a lot of pride in doing my job, even if it’s not something I want to do long. I like doing a good job…and I didn’t.  Worse, someone else had to make up for it.  That hurts.  So I did the only reasonable thing.  I got LM in the car and took him to school.  My LEO met me there to take LM in, and saw that I was simply falling apart. When he came out, he stood at my window and I just unloaded about everything.  Work (eh), Siren stress (though I love it), Bellicus stress ( his company that I basically do most of the planning for, and though I also love it- it kills me some days) and Church obligations (I love them too).  Just because we LOVE something, doesn’t mean it doesn’t cause weight on our shoulders.  With all of the above keeping me busy, trying to spend time with the family and finding time to get a shower or two- I’m left with little sanity.  

I also applied for an LE position with my husband’s department and am praying for my first POPS test at the end of the month.  I have my doubts about being ready, but I did do 28 minutes worth of wall balls and burpees last night at Crossfit… so I’m off to a good start.   The thought of leaving my family for 18 weeks makes me a whole lot of homesick. My LEO is in the process of recruiting under KSP, and that academy starts in August.  All of this is commandeering my brain. 

When I finally left the LEO from our daycare therapy session, the struggle with other issues at work continued.  I’ve faced a lot of stress before, but I was always able to show myself that I was making progress or how, in some way, it was rewarding to handle it.  I can’t say the same thing in my current place.  You know what’s awesome, though? Seeing how God has put His presence in this office in the last few weeks.  

I had the blessing of witnessing to a sweet sister of mine a couple of weeks ago.  She came to Christ the following day, was baptized Sunday before last and has held me accountable a time or two since.  I’m so proud of and for her. The next Monday, a prayer group was started in our building.  

Then, that burden was gone.  I’d ached for her for so many weeks and then my immediate mission was complete.  Of course there’s work to be done because there’s growth to be had.  But that’s an ongoing, lifelong process.  Have I done what I’m supposed to do? Is my time ending in my current place? 

Chapters are so intricately, yet roughly, closed. Are they not? I’ve never ended something in my life with a soft landing.  It’s always been a torn edge. 

I thought today as I was getting ready and praying for God to place His hand on my day (because what I didn’t need it to do was follow the path of my morning).  If my life were written as a book in the Bible, what would people read and think about me? I shuddered. Physically. It makes my skin crawl to think about being that transparent with the world.  

“Why does she keep making the same mistakes over and over?  Doesn’t she know what God is doing? She’s been spoken to so many times and, yet, she still questioned Him?”

It’s the same things I’ve said while reading about the Israelites.  They got MANNA! FROM HEAVEN!! And, yet, they’re praying to whatever they can conjure up? The Spirit of God went before them and fought their battles, but they’re complaining and acting like they never knew God existed?  It goes on and on.  

Oh, how guilty I am of the same!!!!! So many one-on-one experiences with the Maker and, yet, I forget all He’s done.  I freak out about stupid, trivial cracks in the ice when my God walks on water.  Like Moses, my God goes before me and fights my battles. I need only rest. 

But KNOWING and ACCEPTING are two very different things.  I’m working on it.  If God were through with me, I’d no longer be here. I do accept that.  

I need a nap, perhaps.  

Need a smile? There’s always this

-Brandi

The Siren

OSprJIS

Since our last chat, God has really been putting up big neon, blinking signs- just as I requested.  I’ve been putting up big excuses.

“I don’t have TIME to invest into anything else.” Here- stomach bug. Now you have plenty of time to get everything organized.  As in, four straight days.

“I don’t have the money to put forth into this venture.” Have you forgotten your tax return?

“I don’t know how to do all these spreadsheets, I’m better at guns and guitars than I am style stuff and I have no idea what I’m doing running a business.” I’ve blessed you with friends who are more than willing to help, and you’re already a business manager for someone else. Use those skills here.

“But…” Nope.

So, I’ve been doing a lot of work. A LOT of work. And, I’m scared. This is a huge leap of faith.  We don’t have a lot of money and, what we do have, is already spent.  My LEO has been so  supportive in this, though. I took a nap yesterday and, when I woke up, he told me I’d been asleep a couple of hours and should probably check my store.  Indeed, it was a good call.

My fears are financial, of course. I’m also afraid of letting it consume my time to the point that I start losing sight of my priorities. Today, I stopped and took time to pray that God wouldn’t let me stop praying. I don’t want to rest on a taste of success (yesterday and the day before have been great days, though I’ve not quite made what I’ve spent yet).  I want to continue to grow and give glory to God. I’ve prayed to let this be a ministry.  I AM giving 10% of all sales to an LEO based organization (by need). I plan to do so quarterly when I pay my taxes. It’s all new, and I just don’t know how it will all work, yet. I just know I have to do one of those blind steps in faith.  I just have no answers.

What I do know, however, are there are big changes on the horizon.  A small part of me wants to go back to bed. I’m a creature of habit. While I love adventure, I’m easily homesick and like my patterns.  However, the biggest part of me feels as if it is my birthday! I  am so excited and full of joy. It’s inexplicably overwhelming and I can’t help but nearly bounce off the walls when I think on it.

I also know Jeremiah 29:11 holds a promise.

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord,

“plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

Prosper me? Hope & a future? How can one NOT rest in that?

Not to mention 2 Timothy 1:7:

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.”

Be bold!

-Brandi