Parenting Spiritual Growth

Radical

Well, I got up the gumption to write a big blog post last week – one that sort of spilled out of my soul all over the paper.  To be honest, I wrote it in a Word Doc and let it sit for a few days while I allowed God to remind me that He stands between me and any critics in my life.

Tonight, I’m alone in the living room.  My husband and older son are off in Mexico building a house with a church group for a family who needs something more than tattered boxes to call “home.” I’m praying hard over their trip – knowing God can build much more than a house in this process.  As my two guys reach out to this family, God is reaching deep and I am praying that their hearts will be eternally changed for the good.  It works that way.  We pour out and we are filled simultaneously because we just can’t outgive God.  Giving reminds us that we don’t own anything, and that we could just as easily be the recipient as the giver because there really is only One Giver and we are all beggars in His presence.  Oh, we need those reminders. 

Meanwhile I’m the single-parent to my younger son for a week.  I forgot how hard only children can be.  Don’t get me wrong, we’re having a party over here eating eggs for supper and playing board games and dancing to loud music in the living room and doing just about whatever we please, but it’s a full-time gig being his best friend for hours on end.  I’m cherishing the moments and taking internal Polaroids of his eyes alive with laughter.  I’m tracing these memories into my heart for the years ahead.  This week is a gift I’ll unwrap time and again as he ages.

And in my quiet time – since I have more stillness with the population of our home temporarily cut in half – I am feeling the beckoning of God.  He reminds me that when I am not careful I can fall into rhythms which go through the motions and avoid Him in the process.  How I long for Him wholly.  I want to be changed in the most important places. I don’t want to be changed to be a different person (isn’t that cool – I actually like being me these days!) but I do hunger for the fire to be lit so that I never settle for “enough” in my relationship with Him.  I want to allow Him to have His way in my heart and life so that I can be radical for Him.  Sometimes radical is quiet.  It isn’t always being a foster mom to 18 disabled children or selling all your belongings to go reach those who don’t know Him in East Asia.  Radical is a heart stance.  It is the undivided love which looks at God and says, “yours.”  It is going to Him and saying, “whatever” because whatever includes being with Him in new and deeper ways.  That is the turn I feel coming and it makes me just a little giddy.  Last week I was nervous to let Him enter into places where I am hurting.  This week I feel the promise attached to His invitation.  And the promise is that I don’t have to be perfect to be loved.  And the call is radical like a mega roller coaster.

And, just for tonight I want to raise my hands up on the hairpin turns and let out a serious scream of freedom.  

Photos courtesy of WikiCommons
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10 Comments

  • Reply
    Karrilee Aggett
    July 22, 2014 at 7:39 AM

    This is just all kinds of lovely! I have an Only… she recently grew up and moved out and now my home is silent on a regular basis. I too am feeling this call to a more radical life… in the choosing to let Him in deeper. There have been seasons, but it seems I found myself going through motions without realizing it until all the motion stopped! Loved this: I want to allow Him to have His way in my heart and life so that I can be radical for Him. Sometimes radical is quiet. It isn't always being a foster mom to 18 disabled children or selling all your belongings to go reach those who don't know Him in East Asia. Radical is a heart stance. It is the undivided love which looks at God and says, "yours."

    I will be including this post in my weekend recap of great reads!

  • Reply
    HeartsHomeward
    July 22, 2014 at 8:10 AM

    Karrilee,
    Welcome to HeartsHomeward and thank you. It is funny how God can, and does, sneak up on us in the best of ways. I know from my own longings when I am missing the mark a bit, but sometimes I drag my heels because the going deeper usually means more vulnerability and more pain. The pain isn't so bad once I'm in it, but I sure avoid it like the plague. I am so grateful for your kindred comments. I'm praying for you right now that God will answer the cries of your heart. Funny too that we long for the silence sometimes when children are clamoring all around us, but when they are gone there is a space that tells us of their absence in ways we didn't really hope for. Thanks for sharing my post too, what a sweet compliment!

  • Reply
    Barbie
    July 22, 2014 at 10:05 PM

    I'm feeling the tug to go deeper. And there is so much more surrendering that I need to do. I love you and what He is doing in your heart. Makes me yearn for Him all the more.

  • Reply
    Greta Cheney
    July 23, 2014 at 8:25 AM

    This is beautiful. It's so true about having only one child…I have 3 and my hardest days were/are when I only had one around. I'm yearning for a fire to light and be happy and present in my current moments. Thank you for this post.

  • Reply
    Laura Lee
    July 23, 2014 at 8:51 AM

    How wonderful to get to spend time with your child. I loved your definition of radical! What a beautiful reminder, God's "whatever" is certainly better than any of my plans I may have!

  • Reply
    HeartsHomeward
    July 23, 2014 at 9:19 AM

    Barbie,
    Consider yourself hugged – well hugged – and I am right here with you, cheering you on as you take those daring and scary leaps of surrender. We will yearn and yearning is the gift in some ways. It is the opposite of apathy. And, He will fill and then allow more yearning as we go deeper still. So glad to be walking with you and have you walking with me in this season.

  • Reply
    HeartsHomeward
    July 23, 2014 at 9:21 AM

    Greta,
    Thank you for coming by and reading and for letting me know how this touched you. I'll pray over that fire – the longing for the fire is a longing in itself that will kindle something bigger in due time. Praying right now – that God would gently blow on embers to bring forth a flame.

  • Reply
    HeartsHomeward
    July 23, 2014 at 9:32 AM

    Thanks, Laura Lee!
    I sometimes resist His "whatever" and then when I succumb to His invitation, I am never sorry. Why I kick and scream, sometimes is because of old hurts and the residue of fear and sometimes it is just sin nature alive in me. I'm just eating up the joy of this season in the meantime.

  • Reply
    shelley swanson
    July 23, 2014 at 5:09 PM

    You are so inspiring in so many ways my friend. I think many of us that know you personally are beyond blessed because you radiate Christ. There are days I have a high level of stress and anxiety, yes I turn to Jesus, but I also see your caring smile and hear your tender words and believe me many others do too.

  • Reply
    HeartsHomeward
    July 23, 2014 at 6:18 PM

    Shelley, thank you so much. We all radiate Christ in our own way. That is the delight of His creation. We each get to radiate in our own specific way. When I see the colors and spirit in your art, I am drawn to worship. When I watch the creative things you do with your little pilgrim I am so inspired to live life through my children's eyes. Your words here bless me, sweet friend. I'm so grateful God uses me to bless you.

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