Life Hacks: Water Play With Littles

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Hello blogging world! I am back! Sadly, it has been a long time since my last post but never fear, I have a whole slew of topics bouncing around in my head that are just dying to get out! Hopefully over the next few weeks I will be able to share some of them with you. So where have I been, you might ask. Why haven’t I been blogging or updating my Facebook page? I think this picture about sums it up….

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Levi is why. This is what happened when I turned my back for 5 seconds today. 5 seconds yall! And really, this was mild. I won’t go into the weekly toilet incidents or tell you how many things I have fished out of the toilet. I don’t even use gloves anymore! When I was big and pregnant with this sweet babe, people would often assure me, “the 3rd child is always the easiest.” And to that I say Ha! Levi is arguably our hardest child. In fact, as it turns out, my 17 month old bouncing boy is a bonafide thrill seeker. This kid has no fear! He can climb anything and will jump off anything. So, in short, the reason I have been absent on this here blog is because I love my kids and don’t want them to die. I mean, really I could say “I have three boys, ages 5 and under” and I think that also speaks for itself. Boys don’t just eat you out of house and home. They also get hurt–a lot. No lollygagging on the job for me! Pretty much every time I pick up my phone or check out for a couple minutes I hear the phrase “Mom! There’s blood!” We easily go through a box of band-aids every week. Batman themed, Trolls, Avengers, Minions–we’ve had them all. Owen is convinced they are magic stickers that have healing powers. Thanks Disney. Who would have thought that band aids could effect your bank account. Anyway, moving on…I do actually have a topic that I want to talk about today!! We are smack dab in the middle of the summer! I live in Texas which means it is ridiculously hot and sticky. Water play has become a weekly staple and I have a few hacks that I think could be beneficial to other Mom’s.

Hack Number One:

Spray sunscreen. It’s a game changer y’all! I have always been opposed to these type of sunscreens. They have several ingredients that are less than ideal, they carry on the wind and get in people’s eyes and mouths, and they can cause asthma if breathed in. That being said, spray sunscreens are the best thing ever!!! First off, the “healthier alternatives” are ridiculously expensive. Second off, when I use the expensive stuff, it takes forever to rub it into their skin. Third, aint nobody got time for that! Bottom line, I am too busy keeping my kids alive to spend 5+ minutes on each individual child endlessly rubbing in thick sunscreen that smells like butt paste. Blurg!!! With spray sunscreen you can literally line them up in a row, spray, rub it in for 10 seconds, turn them around, spray, rub it in for 10 more seconds and be DONE! Fun in the sun here we come!

Hack Number Two:

Extra towels. Never bring one per person. There is always some unforeseen reason or event that will end in your children having an epic fight over who gets Mom’s towel. A few weeks ago, one of our towels got soaked in pee. Levi had a hand in that. ūüėČ Did I mention that he is obsessed with toilets?? Thank goodness we had extra towels!

Hack Number Three:

Bring along the tear free baby shampoo. Whether we are going to the splash pad, a friends pool, or even to our own backyard to play in the baby pool, I have started bringing along our trusty foaming babyorganics shampoo (the organic part is to make up for the spray sunscreen ūüėČ ūüėČ ). The last thing I want to do after coming home from a long day in the sun is put forth any ounce of effort. I want to lock Levi down in the high chair, turn on some cheesy kids show and VEG OUT. Junk food for everyone (okay so I guess the organic shampoo is kind of a moot point)! Seriously though, who wants to peel off wet clothes and give three starving kids a bath? Not me! Nope nope nope. Here’s what I do instead…while we are still at the splash pad, about 5 min before I’m ready to dry them off, I lather them up with shampoo and send them back out onto the splash pad for a couple of minutes. When they come back, they come back clean! Well, clean enough for me anyway. It’s basically the same thing at the pool or at home in your yard. When they are done with the waterworks, lather them up and then spray them down with a hose. Works every time.

Hack Number Four:

Put your kids in matching clothes. Cheesy I know, but when you are at a giant water park or even at the local splash pad, it is helpful to be able to easily identify all of your kids. I don’t even say their names in my head anymore…I just make sure I count three Treherne’s and we’re good. :’)

**disclaimer** No children were hurt in the making of this blog post. This was the product of a well utilized nap time. Incidentally, because of a day at the pool, all three kids are asleep at the same time. Basically my thought process was, either I could clean up the diapers or write a blog post. ¬†ūüôā

The Days are Long and the Years Short

“YOLO”

“Life is too Short”

“Carpe Diem!”

“As for man, his days are like grass; As a flower of the field, so he flourishes. When the wind has passed over it, it is no more, And its place acknowledges it no longer.” -Psalm 103:15-16

Time is moving and it is moving fast. There is no escaping this constant, unmovably moving passage. Some choose to ignore the markers that are pointing to this reality, but as¬†Mothers,¬†there is no room for such delusion. Our children are a very regular¬†reminder. This life¬†and their lives are passing all too quickly…baby boy rolled over for the first time; seems like only yesterday you heard his first cry, raw and guttural…brother jumps two clothing sizes over the summer…the twins perform in their first play…little sister isn’t so little anymore and is about to get her permit…big brother has graduated and is heading off to college…

Oh yes, for us Mom’s, the reminders are almost as constant as time itself.

The old adage, “The days are long and the years short” couldn’t be more true. ¬†Sometimes the tyranny of the urgent: getting¬†the children dressed and out the door or putting the baby¬†down for a nap, can cloud our vision, but as the dust settles and we see the subtle and dramatic changes that come with growth and maturation, we can not help but stare down the barrel of time. I don’t know about you, but whenever¬†my children reach new milestones and especially when they leave one behind, I feel a deepening¬†sense of responsibility and urgency. I am reminded that while the day might seem like it is never going to end, these children that God has entrusted to me, are rapidly approaching adulthood¬†and eventually death. I am reminded that much like the servant with his talents, these children are not¬†mine.¬†They belong to God and I have been charged to invest in them, to “train up a child in the way he should go; [so that] even¬†when he is old he will not depart from it. (Proverbs 22:6)” One day, I will stand before God, my Master and have to give an account to Him for how I handled, treated, and invested in these¬†people he has entrusted to me. Will he say “well done my good and faithful servant” or will I be like the servant that wasted his talent, burying it in the ground?

‚ÄúFor it [the kingdom of heaven] will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted to them his property.¬†To one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away. He who had received the five talents went at once and traded with them, and he made five talents more. ¬†So also he who had the two talents made two talents more. ¬†But he who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground and hid his master’s money.¬†¬†Now after a long time the master of those servants came and settled accounts with them. ¬†And he who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five talents more, saying, ‚ÄėMaster, you delivered to me five talents; here, I have made five talents more.‚Äô His master said to him, ‚ÄėWell done, good and faithful servant.¬†You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.‚Äô¬†And he also who had the two talents came forward, saying, ‚ÄėMaster, you delivered to me two talents; here, I have made two talents more.‚Äô¬†His master said to him, ‚ÄėWell done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.‚Äô ¬†He also who had received the one talent came forward, saying, ‚ÄėMaster, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed, ¬†so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here, you have what is yours.‚Äô¬†But his master answered him, ‚ÄėYou wicked and slothful servant! You knew that I reap where I have not sown and gather where I scattered no seed? ¬†Then you ought to have invested my money with the bankers, and at my coming I should have received what was my own with interest. ¬†So take the talent from him and give it to him who has the ten talents. ¬†For to everyone who has will more be given, and he will have an abundance. But from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away. ¬†And cast the worthless servant into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.‚Äô” -Matthew 25:14-30

We do not know the day or hour that our¬†Master, King Jesus will return but we do know that we are supposed to be ready and alert, not letting time slip¬†by, wasted. Practically everyone¬†has an opinion on how our children should be raised and disciplined but just as the talents were given to the servants “each according to his ability” God has intentionally chosen you to parent the children that God¬†has entrusted to you. So don’t waste precious time worrying about measuring up to that cool Mom on Pinterest or even to another godly Mom friend. “Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. (Ephesians 5:15)” And how do we know what his will is? By reading, studying, praying over, meditating on his word, the Bible. We should never hold ourselves up to the standards of others, but instead hold our lives and efforts up to the infallible word of God, looking humbly to¬†Jesus, He is the living word. It¬†is by his stripes that we have been healed and saved from sin and it is only through his sacrifice and his¬†strength that our efforts will be any better than those of the slothful servant.

So where do we even start? How can we be faithful to God and invest in our children? Start small. “You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much.”¬†You don’t have to come up with some big grandiose 10 step plan. There is no magical formula. Take baby steps and feed yourself on the pure spiritual milk that is God’s word. Feed your children.

“like newborn babies, long for the pure milk of the word, so that by it you may grow in respect to salvation,” -1 Peter 2:2

“And how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God¬†may be complete, equipped for every good work.” -2 Timothy 3:15-17

Use Your Words!

use-your-wordsSome how, some way all three of my boys are napping at the same time, two days in a row. So here I am sitting at my laptop enjoying the clicking sound of the keyboard and snacking on my children’s applesauce. ūüôā I love to write. Partly because it is enjoyable to organize my thoughts and feelings (believe me they are not organized in my head!) and partly because I am convinced that words have a great potential to stir souls and move hearts. Words are uniquely powerful…both written and spoken. “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits. (Proverbs 18:21 ESV)” A lot of times we acknowledge and teach how dangerous words can be but forget that they can also¬†bind wounds, nurture¬†souls, and in the case of God–create something from nothing. The Lord could have brought the Universe into existence with the clap of his hands or wrinkle of the brow but he chose to use spoken word. “For he spoke, and it came to be; he commanded, and it stood firm. (Psalm 33:9)” We, of course, cannot speak things into existence but, our ability to speak and intelligently communicate with our mouth is a gift from the Lord that uniquely belongs to mankind. It is a power the Lord has¬†bestowed upon us–a part of what it means to bear the image of God. Jesus tells a parable in the book of Matthew about a Master that before leaving on a¬†journey, entrusts three servants with a sum of money. Two of them invest their talents and have a surplus to give their Master when he returns. The third, however, buries his money in the ground and does not seek to multiply that which¬†has been given to him. The Master is very displeased and severely punishes him. While this story in and of itself has nothing to do with words, I do think there is an underlying principle to be learned. It is not enough to¬†avoid doing evil. We are called to use what the Lord has given us for good. So, applying that to the topic at hand:¬†we could simply make it our goal to avoid speaking evil but then¬†we would essentially be burying our words in the ground. We must take it a step further¬†and pursue speech that glorifies the Lord and lifts others up. While we cannot literally create life with our words, we can speak words of life to others. I am always telling my kids, “Use your words!” Which is ironic because that is exactly what I should be telling myself. As we go about our days¬†as wives, moms, friends, sisters, and daughters, let us remember to be intentional to use our words for good.

What’s A Girl To Do?

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Have you ever had one of those days where every time you try to accomplish something you are quickly interrupted? “Mommy, Mommy! Come here! I need you!” or “Mommy! Come play with me!” or as my 10 month old likes to put it, “Ma Ma Ma AHHHHHHHHHHHHH AHHH MA MA MA MA” and on and on it goes until “MA MA” drops her task and gives them her full attention. I have a lot of those days. In fact, I do believe every day is one of those days! It’s very sweet that my children are so excited to spend time with me but many days there are things that really do need to get done! I mean I could wear dirty underwear but should I wear dirty underwear? ūüėČ It might be laughable but clean laundry¬†is no easy thing when you have three littles competing for your attention and time. So what’s a girl to do? I find that as is the case with most things, there is no simple answer. Often times when we come across a problem or road block we tend to be reductionistic. We oversimplify and try to put everything into a neat little box but we have to be careful because in doing so we often gloss over the root problem and rob ourselves of an opportunity to examine our hearts and the hearts of our children. That being said, instead of asking yourself something like “How can I get stuff done despite my children interrupting me?” or “How can I get my kids to stop interrupting me?” it might be more profitable to ask yourself more probing questions such as:

“Why do my children demand my attention every time I start to clean house?”
“Am I spending too much time cleaning and not enough time with the kids?”
“Am I spending too much time with the the kids? Am I teaching them that they always need to be entertained by someone?”
“When I spend time with my children, is it quality time that nurtures their soul and leaves them feeling loved?”

For me, the answers to these type of questions change mostly depending on how well my relationship with the Lord is going. When I am not being intentional to spend time in prayer and time meditating on the word, my priorities tend to get out of whack and the time I spend with my kids tends to have less impact or rather not the right kind of impact. The past week or so, my children have been a little more demanding than usual and after asking myself the above quesitons as well as talking to my husband and asking the Lord for wisdom, I am pretty sure that the problem is twofold. One: I am not spending enough quality time with them. I have been putting too much emphasis on creating a “well oiled machine” and not enough emphasis on shepherding my children’s hearts (which takes focused time). Two: I have been inadvertaintly training them that they need to be entertained 24/7. Because I’ve been trying to get our house in perfect order, I have been setting them up with a myriad of crafts, shows, and activities to keep them busy and distracted. Crafts and activities are not bad in and of themselves but it’s important that we don’t model or teach our children that they need to be entertained at all times. Our goal in life is not happiness–it is holiness.

You might be saying, “That’s all well and good but I still need clean underwear!” Yes you do! I do too! But maybe I don’t also need to clean the baseboards today or cook that new complicated recipe I found on Pinterest. Maybe instead, I will plan something easy for dinner, get the kids involved in folding laundry, and when conversations inevitably turn to Christmas lights I can take the opportunity to talk about Jesus–the Light of the world.

Blessings!
Grace|HouseWife|BoyMom

Tips for Helping Newborns Sleep Better & Longer

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My husband and I have lived through the newborn stage three consecutive times. I think that is quite an accomplishment! Having a newborn is no easy thing. Their only form of communication is crying and they are up anywhere from every five minutes to maybe every 4 hours if you’re lucky and you are willing to risk a low milk supply! That being said, while my mantra was always “if we can just make it to the two week well visit we’ll be good” I do miss those early days and tiny babes. Today I wanted to revisit those memories and share with you my tried and mostly true tips and tricks for helping your newborn or young baby sleep longer (because sleeping through the night is a myth!) at night.

1. SWADDLE. I can’t stress this enough! Newborn babies have what is called the startle reflex and it is exactly as it sounds! If they aren’t swaddled at night, they will startle themselves awake over and over again! Double swaddling worked like a CHARM with all three of my boys. Here’s a tutorial my best friend wrote!

https://sarahjtk.wordpress.com/2012/07/23/the-double-swaddle/

Sometimes people think their babies don’t like to be swaddled because they cry while they¬†are wrapping them. But usually their tears have more to do with you messing with¬†their¬†limbs than with the swaddle itself. And can I just be real for a minute? Even if your baby doesn’t like it, it is proven to help them sleep better and sleep is very important for their brain development¬†not to mention¬†your sanity! Newborns cry, it’s what they do. I know it’s hard to stomach¬†but a little fussing for a short period of time is okay as long as you are comforting and loving on your baby.

2. Heating pad! Before you start baby’s¬†bedtime routine, go plug in a¬†heating pad and place it where your child will be sleeping.¬†When it comes time to lay them¬†down, remove the heating pad and place baby onto their now cozy sheets. The warmth makes it less obvious that¬†Mommy is catching a breather.

3. Rice Socks! When my boys were newborns, I filled a couple of socks with rice and positioned them around their bottom half. I would even put one (that only had a little bit of rice) over their chest. The slight pressure made them feel like I was still holding them and would often help them sleep longer.

4. White noise!! Our neighbors like to play their bass at all hours of the night. Thankfully having a steady background noise cancels out their poor taste in music. :-p I use the app Chroma Doze. You can download it for free on android phones. I am not sure if it is available on the iphone but I would assume that there is at least one app out there that would do the job! If all else fails, a box fan will cut it.

5. Kissing baby’s eyes! When baby is very young, kissing their eye or eyebrows¬†every few seconds will force them to close their eyes often enough that it will put them right to sleep.

6. Room Temperature. Make sure baby is not too hot or too cold. That can majorly affect their ability to sleep. The rule of thumb is to take what feels comfortable to you and and add a layer for baby.

7. Frequent Daytime Feeds. This right here is key! Make sure you feed your baby often throughout the day. My goal was every two hours. If you go 3-4 hours, while it probably will not hurt your child, he will make up for it that night and nurse more often which means he will wake up more often.

8. Reality Check. Remember that it’s normal for newborns to wake up often. No matter what you do, sometimes your baby will be up every 30 minutes. Don’t spend the night stressing and worrying that something is wrong. As long as baby has plenty of wet and dirty diapers and¬†does not have a fever, he is most likely just going through a growth spurt which means cluster feedings! At the beginning, those nights can sometimes be more often than not and it is easy to get discouraged or feel hopeless. But it’s important to remember that this is temporary. It is a season and like all seasons this too shall pass. As with every season we go through, the Lord has things that he wants to show us and opportunities for growth that are unique to that¬†particular time. Don’t miss out on those things like I did with my first! Set your blurry sleep ridden eyes on Jesus and ask him for strength, wisdom and endurance and ask him to draw near and grow your faith.

Hope these tips help!
Many blessings!
Grace|HouseWife|BoyMom

Ways Nursing Mom’s Can Boost Their Energy

I have three boys, each a wiry ball of energy! Just one of those bouncing super heros¬†has more energy than I do but when you add them all together-wowee-that’s three times the energy! Triple Trouble!¬†(Did I mention I have three boys? Three bouncing balls of energy? Three sticks of dynamite? Three-oh, I did? Well, okay, I’ll move on then.)

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So what do you do when your energetic kids are super revved about the day and your not so energetic self just wants to pull the covers over your head? I don’t know about you, but if I’ve had a rough night with the baby, I usually down a cup of coffee. It’s my go to- it’s most people’s go to. And it works. For a while, anyway. After about 3 to 4 hours, I start crashing–hard. Like head on collision crashing. Like 8 hours of sleep sounds better than 8,000 dollars crashing. Usually by that point, despite my delirious state, I still have enough brain power to know that I don’t want to risk a second cup otherwise it might¬†transfer through the breastmilk and contribute to another rough night. But all is not lost! There are several other things that we nursing Moms can do to give us that extra boost.

Vitamin B12 and B6:
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These supplements are safe for baby and are not only great for upping your energy level but can also help ward off postpartum depression.

Water:
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I am terrible about keeping up with the recommended water intake  but on those rare days that I do drink enough, I always notice a boost in my energy and milk supply! Double win!

A Quality Vitamin and Probiotic:
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Not only do children generally have more energy than their parents, they also¬†consume¬†what little we do have! Even baby joins in, taking what he needs from our¬†breast milk so that he can grow strong and yes, you guessed it, energetic. Taking a good vitamin/probiotic is super important. A lot of times, we have deficiencies due to poor diet or some other factor (like having three kids back to back). Thankfully, our body is going to take what baby needs whether we have enough to spare or not.¬†But while good for baby, that can sometimes leave us depleted and wan¬†thus the importance of taking a good vitamin!! I take Garden of Life’s Raw Probiotic/vitamin blend.

Honey:
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Many moons ago, before my little energy suckers were born,¬†I used to work at a coffee shop. On the days that I opened, I had to be there very early–around 4:30 am. Instead of drinking coffee, I would put a TBSP of honey under my tongue and let it dissolve. It would give me instant energy. Definitely something to check out¬†if you are trying to avoid caffeine or have reached your daily limit!

Nuts:
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Fatty snacks such as nuts or avocados tend to give nursing Mom’s a nice¬†boost of energy and if eaten in moderation the fat won’t go to your hips!

Sunshine:
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Looking out the window won’t cut it. Put on your shoes and your kid’s shoes and go get you some vitamin D! It will give you some energy (if you don’t spend¬†too much time out there) and might just help your kids sleep better tonight.

Get your Heart Rate Moving:
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Most people would recommend exercising to increase energy but who has time for that? Or rather, this Mama doesn’t want to do that! If you aren’t feeling the gym, turn on some music instead. Go grab your kids and have a dance off. I guarantee you that it will get the blood pumping and lift those tired eyes. Guilty music pleasure: Shake it Off by Taylor Swift. ūüėČ

As always, don’t forget that our main source of energy can not be depleted or restored by external means. The Lord is the one that sustains our bodies. He is holding you, me–the whole universe together. Don’t forget to spend some time in prayer and ask him to give your body and soul what it needs¬†to use the day for his glory and the good of your husband and children.

Well, I am off to bask in one of those rare moments that my child wants to sit still and cuddle. Adam, my four year old, just asked me, “Mommy do you want to come watch Caillou with me and cuddle?”

“Yes son, yes I do!”

Blessings!
Grace|HouseWife|BoyMom

Reflections on Birth and the Gospel

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Lately I‚Äôve been reflecting on Levi‚Äôs birth story and the gospel. Funny how pain drives us to our knees; figuratively speaking and literally. It has been my experience that the hard things of life uniquely shine light into dark areas otherwise left untouched. The more excruciating the pain, the clearer the gospel comes into focus and our desperate need therein. On my knees up against the hospital bed, 20 hours in, I can remember crying out to my husband, Bailey, ‚ÄúTalk about Jesus again. Tell me about the gospel.‚ÄĚ ¬†It was the only thing that made sense in my mind, broken with pain. Every second passed felt like a second frozen in time. Even though he was my third child to birth, the pain was unimaginably raw, tremendous, excruciating. ¬†And yet, as so often is the case, it is in those painful moments, hours, days or whatever amount of time the Lord has allotted, that his glory is so clearly revealed, resonating inside of our souls. It is in the hour of desperate need that we are often viscerally confronted, comforted by the gospel. ¬†I remember clutching my wooden cross as an especially long contraction began to swell. I was walking the halls with my dear Mom and precious Mother in law- both women, his hands and feet materialized. As my abdomen began to tighten beyond what I felt I could bear, I stopped and asked them to pray with me. I started to ask God to take the pain away, to stop this madness when I remembered the words of my wise husband. Earlier as we walked into the hospital unsettling the morning dew, he had taken the quiet moment to impart courage and prepare me for the hours ahead. He charged me to be intentional and specific in my prayers to the Lord. To pray for relief but more importantly to pray that I would suffer well and glorify God in my anguish. So, right there in the hallway, a stone‚Äôs throw from the nurses station, as my mind started to slip into the blinding reality of pain, those words came back to me and took root, grounding my mind. I began to pray that my suffering would point others to the Lord, that my tears would bring glory to his name, that this ushering in of life would point others to the one who ushers in and offers spiritual life to all mankind. I had always thought the saying ‚Äúpeace that passes understanding‚ÄĚ to be overused and trite and yet in that moment, those words are exactly what I would use to describe the calm that settled down on me, around me. The peace and love of the Lord sifted through my soul physically warming my body. I felt the presence of God¬†in a way that I don‚Äôt know that I have ever felt before or since. They say that when you get married and then again when you parent children, you experience the gospel in a more personal way, that you get a hands on glimpse into eternity. I would submit to you, as would scripture that birth is another one of those pictures that point us to Christ. The affliction and wonder of birth certainly¬†offered me perspective into the¬†eternal beauty and mystery that is Jesus, the cross, and his glorious resurrection. You see, labor is an affliction. It is a curse, a result of sin, original sin wrought by Eve. And yet it is also¬†a wondrous thing, it is the beginning of a new precious life.¬†The days my sons were born are simultaneously the¬†worst and best¬†days of my life. The day that Jesus died¬†was simultaneously the worst day and best day of history. Worst because the sin of mankind culminated in the murder of the God-Man himself and best because this same man¬†sacrificed himself¬†for the very ones that nailed him to that cross. He sacrificed himself for you, for me.

I did not suffer well every frozen second of the 26 hours. But there were those blessed moments, almost portals that transcended time, transcended the numbing pain. I will never forget those glimpses of glory and will always treasure this palpable perspective that the Lord has gifted me, established in my heart. Just as I painfully suffered so as to bring one life into the world, on a much grander scale Jesus perfectly suffered the brutality of the cross so as to bring many to life. But make no mistake, his savage death is not the culmination of his suffering or the cause of his bloody sweat spent at Gethsemane. What is more jarring than any torment by man is the wrath of the Lord God poured out on him in retribution over the sin of mankind. Jesus took the destruction that we deserved and tasted bitter death. It was in this hideous suffering that far surpassed my guttural screams, that birthed many sons to glory, that lit up the entire universe. Six months later, I look into the light that is my son’s eyes and I remember. I remember the pain, the brokenness, but more importantly I remember the light that is God’s glory.   DSC_0325