Sunday, September 28, 2014

Care to Prayer

I am a very intense person -- meaning I have strong emotions that I struggle to control.

Honestly, it can be exhausting. And sometimes I just have to force myself to not care about something so that I don't get all worked up over it and drain my energy.

But, I was pondering that a while ago and suddenly felt convicted about not caring about much.

I don't need to not care about something in order to conserve energy; I should, in turn, pray about it. Better than me even getting involved is giving that concern over to God.

Instead of holding my hands up and saying not my problem, I need to hold my hands out and lift it up to the Burden-carrier.

Turning care to prayer,

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Sibling-Togetherness

  • Ricky flew to Chicago to visit his brother for several days. He had a blast and is home now :) He is very overloaded with work right now :( I stayed at home (on "lock-down") the entire time he was gone, but my mom took the kids out twice. Here are a few pictures from his trip:
The view from Robby's workplace
Robby
Ricky saving the city from The Bean
They enjoyed a Chicago Cubs baseball game (Ricky especially loved Wrigley field) and a Chicago Fire soccer game. They also had fun using the Uber car taxi service ;)
  • One night last week, Superwoman came over, and we watched Moms' Night Out. It provided good laughter. I definitely recommend the movie :) It was the first time we hung out without any kids!
  • Measurements: Aolani -- 41.5" tall and 37 lbs; Micaiah -- 37" tall and 28 lbs




I'm not sure which one is talking and which one is listening ;)



They often pile all their toys in the corner, section it off with bins, and call it their "house" :)

They were pretending to be married (she is wearing my dress-up ballerina costume)!
  • Verse passage I memorized completely now but want to take time to review: Revelation 21:1-7 Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Marriage Leads -- Part 1

Pretty much from early on in my marriage, I realized that this is not what I had imagined. This is no fairy tale.

I know most single women think of little else apart from men, love, companionship, marriage. Most all girls (even Christian ones) end up idolizing love and marriage, even above the Exalted One.

I remember dating and being engaged. And frequently praying against idolatry in my own heart -- that I wouldn't treasure Ricky, our love and future marriage too much, so that they would not end up first in my heart. I also remember thinking of how Ricky will lead me to Christ because he is so righteous and holy.

Well, while that may be a danger for single/engaged/newlywed women, that is not a real threat for those who are married long.

The rose-colored glasses come off quick, and you suddenly see that your Prince Charming is just some weak, selfish, sinful creature -- just like you.

But, guess what??

Ricky does lead me to Christ! Although Ricky is regenerated and holy before God, that is not the sole reason. I go to Christ often because Ricky is human! Because he lets me down or disappoints or acts foolishly or cruelly or unjustly or selfishly... I realize that there is a Perfect Lover who desires me! And He is the one I long for; He will meet my needs. For He does indeed love me fully. So, it is to Him I run :)

Because of Ricky.

Thank You, God, for Ricky!!

Note: I post this with Ricky's permission, as I realize this makes him look bad. Just know that however bad he appears, I am incredibly worse! Ricky is indeed a very godly man who also leads me to Christ through his own upright character, faith, and by the washing of the Word.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Fizzing in All Directions

  • I don't have much to say -- normal week happenings of farmers' market, church, small group over the weekend. The kids have been misbehaving a lot this week :( Ricky is having long days working in another county, which forces me to up the discipline.
  • I meant to share this story last week: When Aolani went to the church nursery in Cincinnati, they gave out teddy graham snacks. Aolani refused and told the lady, "That's not 'tometry." ;)
Aolani loved finding the treasure jewels inside
(the armholes of the dress on her head are her "earrings")
  • Verse passage I'm still memorizing (I finish this week but may need to review next week): Revelation 21:1-7 Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Belonging

 
When we received this month Voice of the Martyrs's magazine issue, the title struck me and will not leave. So, here it is to penetrate you:
"Persecution showed me I belong to Christ."
~ Central Asian believer

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Visits and Back to It

  • We had a nice week without kids. It was filled with work, 2 movies (during meals and mango-cutting), a game night with friends, a movie night with other friends, 9 mangoes, a 3-hour doctor visit, a visit with my grandparents, swimming, errands, and church. But, it is nice to be back pouring energy, love, and guidance into my little ones. This is the work God has given me, and there is joy in that!
  • I had prepared for pre-K last week, and we started school on Monday. It's going well over-all, with several meltdowns and battle-of-will moments. Here is our schedule, which I use as more of a guide, not a do-this-at-this-time thing. Our days usually involve friends and unscheduled events not in the plan. I want to follow it, but we have to be very flexible :)
  • It's been two years this month since I cut my hair for Locks of Love. It was about a foot -- meaning, it was time. So, on Monday it got whacked (by a friend) and will be my seventh hair donation, but this time, to share the love, I'm sending it to Children With Hair Loss (a nonprofit based in Ohio) :) My hair is now really short and might take longer to grow out next time. [My mom said it hasn't been this short since I was one year old!] Eager to do what is good...
  • Micaiah's mishaps: Ever since he returned, he has been acting very territorial when others come over to visit or play; it's funny (odd).
  • Aolani's antics: This week's word for her is just plain brat -- disobedient, telling us no and stop, snatching toys, selfish, won't pick up toys, won't listen, won't nap, whines constantly, always making excuses, disagreeable, won't share, ungrateful, always demanding (like she's entitled to get her way)... basically, not very pleasant, frustrating, and hard for us... :( BUT, each day is getting better...
My paternal grandparents
  • A quick slideshow of Aolani's visit with Ricky's parents:
  • A quick slideshow of Micaiah's visit with my parents:
  • Verse passage I'm still memorizing (almost done): Revelation 21:1-7 Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

You Won't Relent {video}

We cannot stop listening to this song, over and over and over, for months now.


Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Sweethearts

  • Whew! What an exhausting weekend! We all met Ricky's parents for lunch and exchanged Aolani, then headed to Micaiah's doctor appointment (his leg looks great) one day. After my mom and Micaiah left the next day, Ricky and I went to a friends' house to swim in their pool, relax, read, and play BoccĂ© ball :) On the Sabbath, we visited a local Hmong church (and they were so welcoming and gracious), went to a friend's birthday party, and fellowshipped with our small group. Labor Day was filled with labor (but from home).
  • When the nurse showed Micaiah to his room, he sadly said, "No more body cast." :(
  • We were going around the dinner table several nights ago and quizzing Micaiah on genders. "Daddy boy. Grandma girl. Aolani girl. Micaiah boy. Mommy sweetheart." He did this three times! My heart just gushed...


    • Verse passage I'm still memorizing: Revelation 21:1-7 Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children.

    Monday, September 1, 2014

    Choosing to Receive Instead of React

    Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. 
    ~ Phil. 4:6-7 
    Most know that I am a prompt person and Ricky is a late person.

    So when we are suppose to be on time for an event or appointment, it's a little trying.

    I used to get anxious and upset every time we had to go anywhere (which caused me to never want to leave the house; it was stressful).

    But for months now, I have not usually been responding to these times by freaking out (aka, getting anxious).

    Do not be anxious about anything... And...

    It will all work out??

    Nope.

    ...the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. 

    I've been partaking of that peace instead of freaking out. And, oh man, it's rich.