Sunday, December 6, 2009

A day in the life...Version "That" woman

As you can tell on my blog, I've been pretty introspective lately. I've had something like 5 or 6 major life changes within the past 3 months--you know, those that qualify for big stressful "points" or whatever. It's definitely been a place of transition for me. Some days I'm patient with myself, and other days I wish I could run to the opposite end of the world from myself. :) If only that were possible...

On my rough days, I'm usually frustrated with "why" can't I do it all? The world seems to think that it can be done. That a woman can be Career Woman--climbing the corporate ladder. And Wife/Mother--being that perfect housewife and doting mother who always has time to do the baking and scrubbing the baseboards. And Super Christian Woman--making sure she is helping to feed the hungry, spend an hour in prayer/Bible study every day, and encourage others in their walk with the Lord.

I ponder these things. I realize that I "could" do them all--but probably not well, and most likely my health would suffer. I come to a place of acceptance that it must not be God's will for me to do everything perfectly and then I try to focus on one thing at a time. But still I'm frustrated. I feel like there is something missing and that I constantly don't measure up.

Last year, I spent some time in a Bible study about marriage where we looked at the example of "That" woman in Proverbs 31. I would look at this woman and think, "Who IS this woman? And where does she live? What does she have that I don't, and how on earth is she doing all of this, doing it well, AND the people in her city praise her? What gives?"

One night, the Holy Spirit gave me this revelation about the Proverbs 31 woman. He said, "You're looking at her life and thinking she is this perfect woman and does all these perfect wonderful things every day. But my intention was to show you her LIFE. Not a "day in the life," but her WHOLE life."

You see, it's a picture of seasons. In one season of her life, she selects wool and flax, working with eager hands. In another season, she considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard. In still another season, she makes coverings for her bed and is clothed in fine linen and purple. Later on, she speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue. As she gets on in years, her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: "Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all."

Of course, this is just my interpretation and how I feel God explaining the passage to me. But it is SO encouraging. I don't have to be under this pressure to be a perfect employee, perfect boss, perfect mother, perfect wife, perfect housekeeper, perfect Christian--all day, every day. Instead, the Lord showed me He is looking at the book of my life to find the value. Not at each individual chapter (though He sees them all). It's the process--the journey.

Every day I remind myself that without Him, I am nothing anyway. I am never great at asking for help--but I'm trying to remember how much I need Him. Am I going to fail, and have bad days and bad "chapters?" You bet. But then I think those situations might lead to something that would help me to "speak with wisdom" and give me "faithful instruction" for someone else going through that season of life.

I'm learning to like "That" woman--I hope you will, too.

A day in the life...Version "Me"

Some sweet pictures and later, some thoughts.

First, Kenna practicing her girliness. She loves necklaces, scarfs, purses, shoes. Combinations are especially important.

Her new thing when she watches "Praise Baby" DVDs. I love the crossed legs and arm holding up her chin. Nightgown and slippers complete the ensemble... She is already way more girly than I will ever be!

Me and my sweeties, in Washington, D.C. We took a crazy, spur-of-the-moment trip there yesterday (only 3 1/2 hrs away), and got back tonight. None of us had ever been, and we braved the snowy roads on the way there. We were rewarded with beautiful, clear blue skies and plenty of amazing monuments and buildings. The architecture and history behind all the sights is just overwhelming. Marc & I fell in the love with the city--we hope to go back & visit again when we can spend more time. The beauty of it is that almost everything is free. My kind of city!

Kenna Boo at the mall this weekend. New play areas always fascinate the kids. This one was not enclosed--to our displeasure and Kenna's joy. :) She spent most of her time here testing us on "staying on the carpet," and would walk right to the edge of the carpet, look at us, put her foot in the air, smile, and then turn back around to run to the other side and do it all over again.

Zach and the "important man." (his words after I explained who Lincoln was!) Both my kids captivated the tourists. People kept coming up to us & asking to take pictures of the kids. Kenna especially seems to have this magnetism with strangers--we'll have to watch her closely! Marc says he thinks that with her strong will and this magnetism "we've got a leader on our hands." A bit scary that it's our job to raise her....we have to remember to be intentional about looking at this in a positive light. She's not "strong willed" but "determined."
Zach really loved the Lincoln Memorial and asked to go back up a second time. He's definitely a "Stone" though--the 2nd time he went up, Marc said on the way out Z managed to bang the large metal sign which proceeded to echo throughout the whole memorial. The sign reads, "Quiet please, let's be respectful!" Ha ha. The Stone family has a reputation for being clumsy; I think he'll fit right in.