Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Becoming Real

Hi, y'all!  Just kidding.  I never say "y'all".  It sounds cute though. 

Things have been kinda crazy around here, so I haven't done much writing, but I wanted to pop in and say "Hey" and also:

"Why," you ask? 
First of all, because apparently they let anyone have a blog these days.  It is giving me the opportunity to do something I've always wanted to do: be a writer.  Of course I'm not a real writer.  Just like I'm not a real runner.  But these are things I love and I'm having a whole lot of fun turning into those things.  And how else do you turn into a real anything, except by doing what real writers and runners and artists and dancers and whatever it is you want to become, do?

The other reason I am thankful is because of you.  I think about you and what I want to say to you a lot.  And even though I haven't become real yet, you come back to read what I  have to say.  It's quite puzzling and surprising and wonderful.  Thank you for your encouragement and kind words.  I don't think you realize how much you make me smile. 
Love, Liv

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Father to the Fatherless

Happy Father's day to all those daddies out there!  I hope you are having an amazing day.

However, this one is for those who might be having a tough day.  For those who may not have a dad to celebrate, for whatever reason.  Maybe you just miss him because he is on the other side of the world or across the country.  Maybe your dad has passed away, or you've never met him before.  Maybe your dad was/is not a good father.  To some, the word 'dad' brings up anger, sadness, hurt and disappointment.  Do you ache for the love of a father?  Any story you hear or movie you see about a father's love brings tears to your eyes.  You may become angry at those who complain about their fathers because, at least they have one. You miss having a father because every boy needs a hero and every girl needs her daddy, even if she is grown up.  We know instinctively what a father should be.  All of those things you long for in a Father?  God has placed there.  He has put a longing in our hearts for Himself. 

Did you know that you have a special place in God's heart?  You are not forgotten

When my mother and father forsake me, then the Lord will take me up. Psalm 27:10
"...Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine." Isaiah 43:1

I know you know it in your head.  I just wanted to remind you.  Cling to the fact that nothing can separate you from His love (Romans 8:37-39) and let it seep down into your heart until you are wrapped up securely in it. 

Love ya!

- Liv

Saturday, June 15, 2013

When It's Time to Bail

I'm over at my friend, Lindsay's blog, Contagious Comfort, sharing about giving ourselves permission to not have to do it all!

Having a kid graduate makes a girl feel old.  I was hit with a happy/sad nostalgia as I gathered pictures of my son for a photo display.  (He's the little guy in the middle - so adorable!)  Almost 18 years of memories all summed up on a piece of card board.  It was only natural for me to wonder if I would do things differently if I could do it over again.  I would never trade in the sticky kisses and pockets full of rocks and stepping on Legos.  I don't take back the sleepless nights or tears; the Band-Aids and teachers conferences or the trips to the emergency room.

But if I could do anything differently it would be this:  I would keep things simple.  Looking back now, I realize how busy we were.  We had something going on every night.  Good things.  Church things.  And work things.  And Super Momma things .  I planned cool birthday parties and fun play dates.  We had calendar time every morning and learned about cumulus and cirrus clouds.  We did crafts and I even homeschooled for a couple of years.  All.  Good.  Things.  

Click here to

Monday, June 10, 2013

Five Minute Friday: Fall

I'm a few days late, but I am linking up with Lisa-Jo for Five Minute Friday.  By the way, she is on Momastery today.  Check out her post:  For the Dog Days of Motherhood When You Want Your Money Back.  It's perfect! 
Anyway, back to FMF.  It happens every week.  Lisa-Jo gives a prompt and we write unedited for five minutes.  There is just one rule when you link up on her page: encourage the writer who linked up before you.  It's just another great reason to love Fridays!

This is the hardest thing.  Ever.  Knowing you have to let go and let them fall.
When you have done all you can do to love your children and teach them about Jesus and love them some more and pray for them and teach them more about Jesus.  How is it done?  This letting go? 
I have to fall too.  I have to fall into the loving arms of my Father because this letting go – it’s heart breaking.  I have to let go and trust the One who has said “I will never leave you or forsake you”.   And the One who has promised that there is no where we can go where His Spirit can’t find us.   And really, when we let go and trust, isn’t that where we are allowing them to fall also?  Out of our arms and into the arms of Jesus. 

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Guest Post: Hannah's Cry

Eep!  I've been so excited about this guest post!  Lindsay, from Contagious Comfort, is a sweet southern girl who loves God, her family and music.  She writes about faith and motherhood,  sprinkled with recipes and thrifty shopping tips.  Her posts are filled with encouragement and the challenge to "stay contagious".   - Liv

1 Samuel 1:11 “And she made a vow, saying, “O Lord Almighty, if you will only look upon your servant's misery and remember me, and not forget your servant but give her a son, then I will give him to the Lord for all the days of his life, and no razor will ever be used on his head.”

When I read this passage, I am just struck by the heartache of Hannah.  She hurt so badly for a baby.  She longed so much just to be pregnant.  She was in agony, just pure agony.

But you know what shocks me the most is that Hannah was so willing to give him back to God.  All she wanted was to be a carrier for Samuel, and then she was willing to give him back to God.  1 Samuel 1:19-28 talks about how Hannah breastfed him and got him fully weaned so that she could give him back to Eli.  What a huge sacrifice!  What an unbelievable mom!

To just top it off, after she had dropped him off at the temple, she then prays and exclaims:

“My heart rejoices in the Lord; in the Lord my horn is lifted high.....”

“There is no one holy like the Lord; there is no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God.”

Do you honestly think you could drop your kid off at a temple, and then go prancing out with such a wonderful heart? She was celebrating and exclaiming the wonderful privilege of being a mother.  I honestly think I would be a screaming, blubbering mess.  I would try to reason with God, try to change His mind.  Maybe see if I could have custody of Samuel on the weekends, etc.  But Hannah was so incredibly obedient.  She promised God that if she could bear a son, she would give Him back.

So this has been on my mind for the last several weeks.  You see, we too raise our children to give them back.  We keep them in our houses for 18-20 years and then we send them on their way.  We place them in God's hands, and hope that everything turns out.  But we have it easier than Hannah, we get to keep them much longer than she did.

So what are we doing with the time we have with them?

I truly want to run this “parenting race” so that at the end I can say as Hannah did  “My heart rejoices in the Lord!”

So here are a few things I am incorporating into my daily life in order to embrace my wonderful gifts, Mercy and Shep and prepare them for the day where they leave my house:


I am trying my very best to not talk of them as though they are a nuisance. They are a gift, a wonderful gift, that many women would love to have. I try to let them hear me speaking of their strong points to others. I brag, encourage, brag, encourage on repeat right now.  They need to see me proud of them.


I am trying to physically show my children how I pray and read my Bible.  They hear me talk of it, but I want them to see my actually doing it in front of them. I want them to naturally reach for a Bible when they need answers.  I want it to become a part of their daily lives.


I speak of the future often with them.  I speak of the huge plans God has for them.  I tell them that they will not always have me around, so they need to know how to love Jesus themselves.  We talk about good and evil; we talk about sin and pain.  I want them to figure out how to call on Jesus without me around.

Do I do this all perfectly?  Absolutely not.  I am just trying with all my heart to get these little guys ready for a big world.  I know that ultimately I will have to throw them back into God's hands just like Hannah did.  I know that I can't control their little lives forever.  But until then, I will hold onto Jesus and my kids as tight as I possibly can, and we will ride this roller coaster of parenting together.

I hope this encourages your heart today.  Don't give up, Sweet Momma!  Let's live in a way that we can freely give our children back to God and know that He is going to take sweet, sweet care of them.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

How To Run a Good Race

Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us. - Hebrews 12:1
5:30  am - The alarm goes off.  I roll over like Beethoven and decide that I am not going for a run this Saturday morning.  It's been a stressful week - I need the sleep.  I doze back into a far away dream about who knows what.  It must have been pleasant, because I couldn't wait to get back.

5:45 am - The alarm chirps shrill again.  I cover my head as murderous thoughts cross my mind.  I'm thinking a hammer and lighter fluid.  I'm gonna clock that clock over the head - it won't know what time it is.  Okay, sorry.  Not awake enough to be funny. Or pun-ee.  Whatever...

Hubby starts to stir.
"You running today?" 
I play dead.  He shakes my lifeless body.
"Honey, it's getting late." 
I feel him kick off the covers as he sits at the edge of the bed.  Silence.  Blessed silence.

... Never mind.  He gets up and shuffles to the bathroom.  I hear the lid go up, the faucet turns on and the toilet flushes.  The other faucet turns on, and he's washing his hands.  Shuffle, shuffle, shuffle.  He shakes me again. 
"Come on, it's gonna get too hot." 

"Fiiine."  Sigh. I throw off the covers and do my own shuffle, shuffle, shuffle to the bathroom.  It's so hard to get moving.  The sun is out.  My head hurts.  Probably dehydrated.   I so don't want to do this, but I really should.  I won't regret it.  All this goes through my head before I reach the toilet.

6:30 am - We park the car behind the Yamaha building and stretch our dull muscles.  It's been two weeks since we last ran.  It's warm, but not hot yet.  We decide to slightly change our route.  It's the same distance, but goes off the main road and in between the golf course and a housing area.  A little more hilly.  Clearly it's still too early and our judgment is cloudy. 

We decide on a slow pace.  Or rather, Scotty decides to stick with me.  It's actually pleasant -  running side by side, Ed Sheeran playing on my ipod.  We look like that athletic couple who bonds over early workouts on Saturday mornings.  Crazy people.  We are that couple.  We're awesome.  Kinda like this:

We get to the final mile that will take us back to the car.  Uphill.  It's hot.  I'm tired.  Really tired.  Not feeling so awesome now.   I remind myself that I've run more difficult courses. 

My legs hurt.  Just put one foot in front of the other, I tell myself.

My lungs are burning.  Deep breaths.  Ignore the side cramp.  I've slowed to a walk-run.  My shoulders are slumped.  I know if I stop now I won't start back up.  
"Almost there."  Scotty says. 
I'm pretty sure there are horns growing out of his head.

I just want to walk the rest of the way. Don't quit.  Just. Fall.  Forward.

We finally round a corner and I see the Circle K that is across from where we are parked.  I'm thinking about the cold water bottle that's waiting for me.  And rest.  I lift my head, square my shoulders and increase my pace.  I am almost finished. 


Rough morning.  Grumpy kids.  Grumpy momma.  I'm pouting over certain situations and wishing things were different.
 "Is this always going to be a struggle?" "   
 "Put one foot in front of the other." 
 "Lord, I'm just so tired." 
 "Deep breaths.  Don't quit."
 "How long will I have to do this?' 
 "You've made it through more difficult situations than this.   Just.  Fall.  Forward."
Sometimes it seems we are running up hill with tired legs and burning lungs.  But at the top of the hill is rest.  And refreshment.  So, I'm lifting my head, squaring my shoulders and turning up the music.  I'm going to finish strong.


But you, LORD, are a shield around me, my glory, the One who lifts my head high.          - Psalm 3:3
 I will lift up my eyes unto the hills, from which comes my help. - Psalm 121:11