Treasuring Christ In The Midst of Motherhood

Your love is without limit, Your love is constant
Your love goes on forever, Your love is endless
Your love is overwhelming, I can't contain it

Endless- Reckless Love {Cory Asbury}

I would be utterly lying to you if I did not say I have not had this album on repeat since it came out, each and every song holds something and just strengthens the relationship I have with God. And those country influences sure bring a spark to the worship. Cory Asbury has written a wonderfully, raw and honest album and I cannot urge you enough to get a copy for yourself, heck everyone you know because it is just superb. {Koorong}

One of the songs in particular "Endless" have been on my mind more than the others. For me personally I think it is in connection to how much God loves me and how much His love for me reaches, which reflects on how much I as a mother, love Phoebe and bebe #2 due very soon. I love how the lyrics say that God's love for us is so endless, without limits and constant even when we do not feel like we deserve it or need it, He never ever stops loving us. His love for us is so overwhelming that we cannot even begin to understand or contain it. It just magnifies in my own heart, how much I am valued, loved and treasured as His daughter but also makes me thankful for the blessings that He has given me, that is the amazing man by my side on this journey, my husband but also the two little ones that I never even imagined would be a part of this life. And also how much He loves them and the blessings He has already bestowed on their lives and the many more to come along in their own stories. 

I won't lie and say that the past few months have been a struggle for me with Phoebe already hitting that stage of terrible two's and just challenging me to the core, at times it has been hard for me as her mother but also personally to cover myself in patience and to not let all the emotions and sleep deprivation get the better or me. At times I find myself in quick tears of frustration and immediately lash out on myself mentally with non encouraging words after an episode of just pure rawness with Phoebe and in those moments even though they are fleeting and for a second I battle with myself to not let them define me. I have been constantly aware of trying to strengthen my relationship with God and in return strengthen my character and my faith so I can let all the stresses of motherhood just roll right over myself, it is something I want to continue throughout the year not only for myself but to be faith-ready to encourage my daughters on their own journey. 

Over Christmas I knew all I wanted was to be knee deep in the word of God so I spoilt myself with some new books with words of encouragement and faith. I plan to read them everyday, well at least a chapter a day and to just have that one on one time with God that my heart seeks. I want to continue to add to the pile of books as I finish them so I am forever on track with keeping that connection with God and to stay focused. But it is very hard to find time to have that quiet time with a toddler literally climbing all over you and the minute they are actually down for a nap you end up cleaning the house or just sleeping but I find time even if it is just an half an hour or if I only get to read a paragraph, it all counts for how much goodness and guidance I receive out of it. I encourage you to find the time for just yourself and that special time of reflection with God, we really cannot rely on ourselves for all the strength and never ending love to fuel through the motherhood journey, we need God right there beside us because He is our greatest strength.

I chose some key words that I connected to for this year and I plan on really focusing on them and etching them into all that this year will bring. The words are "PATIENCE, STRENGTH AND VALUE/SELF WORTH". Patience, because as I say motherhood has been testing me to the limits and I know it is only going to get harder for me in the new few months and just being patient in general for life, it is very hard for me to just sit & wait for things to unfold so that is something I need to work on and to put my faith in God. Strength, is tied into all of that but emotionally and physically to be stronger as a mum, as myself and my relationship with God. And value/self worth is about me focusing on how much I am treasured and loved by God, to be thankful for all that He has done and the blessings to come, to not be define by my failures and to find my own self worth. 

I recently finished one of my books and it was a very tiny one but I drew so much out of it so here is a few things that I connected with that I think every mother should hold onto. The book is "Treasuring Christ - When Your Hands Are Full" by Gloria Furman.

"a mother who has been born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Christ has an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled and unfading, kept in heaven for her"

"We need other Christian women in our lives to help us grasp how wide, how long, how high and how deep is the love of Jesus"

"The world is brimming over with false hope and nearsighted dreams for motherhood, but Jesus endures forever, Jesus is sufficient"

"We miss the rising sun that signals another day of grace in which God has entrusted us with nurturing his little images bearers to love and honour him first and foremost and forever"

"believe God is with you in your good work of mothering. But since "the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us" then let us not fix our eyes on these temporary pains but on Christ. Respond to Gods call to worship throughout your days and nights, serving and nurturing helpless little ones and worshiping the author of life"

"too often we settle for throwing cliche glow sticks into the darkness of our doubts. And their light and comfort quickly fade. Perhaps the scariest feelings in the midst of these frustrations come from one particular dark thought. It's a life that we're tempted to believe. This idea has more to do with karma than with grace: we suspect that however the day went is how God feels about us"

"your future includes manna. It will come. There is no sense devising future scenarios now because God will do more than you anticipate. When you understand God's plan to give future grace, you have access to what is arguable God's most potent salve against worry and fear" Ed Welch

"your worst days are never so bad that you are beyond the reach of God's grace. And your best days are never so good that you are beyond the need of God's grace" Jerry Bridges

"I remember that motherhood is not a blessing given to me because I deserve it. It isn't a reward for my good deeds or (as some might suggest) a sentencing for my bad deeds. God made me a mother because he jealously and rightly desires praise for his own name, and this is how he saw fit to do it. God aims to glorify himself through our family, and we get to be carried along by his grace. He has created these children, in these circumstances, for such a time as this"


A Day Spent In Newcastle

We ventured to Newcastle just the other day chasing the sun, little did we know that we would get sunburnt to the nines but also drenched to the core running to the car in the rain all in the same day {seriously Phoebe only got sun-kissed and is currently sporting the best tan ever} and of course the entire day she only had the shortest naps in history so she was the wildest thing ever. I mean praise God I got blessed with an independent child am I right? She won't even let us hold her hand if she is in one of her "moods", but she had a blast of a day catching up with family, eating an ice-lolly, kissing a random dog, sharing that ice-lolly with that dog, playing in the sand, dipping her toes in the ocean and just blessing all of us with some great memories. 

Little Viking | 20 Month Update

Cannot believe you are twenty months old kiddo! That is twenty months of having you earthside with us and enjoying the beautiful, wild soul you are. Your almost two years old in a few months and I swear I need to start saving for the pretty darn awesome idea I have for your second birthday party because hell I figure next year you will probably demand some Sheriff Callie or Paw Patrol themed party. (please God no) 

It is another new year with you sweet Rey, you have been super affection this month, giving kisses and cuddles on demand or whenever you feel like it which is alot, you love sharing all the food with Dakota still which is cute but also rather annoying because she is becoming one hell of a scavenger of a dog. You seem to be braver with people you have not seen in a while, you say hello to them and give cuddles when its time to go. I cannot wait to see how you will be with bebe sister due very soon!

You vocabulary is growing rapidly every day and you learn new words like the Dickens! these are some of the words you know this month, frog (although is still sounds like a swear word), same with Fox, Frankie, car, truckie, plane, please (which is darn adorable), you can say your own name now, Tra and Ty (Tracy & Tyler), you have been saying mum more which is nice, you love saying "no mum" and "no" to almost anything we ask you, you try to call Dakota by smacking your lips, you say thank you but it sounds like go half the time, sometimes it sounds like your trying to say your welcome or how are you, uh oh, book, buggie, fan, shoes, socks and sand. 

Speaking of sand you have been allowing us to wash your hands in the sink after you play in the sand which is better than you rubbing it on my pants or your clothes but you still do that anyway. We have a hard time getting you to come back inside once your out there also. 

When you have your nappy off while your bath fills up you do not immediately wet yourself which is nice although I probably will totally jinx it and you will now, but perhaps it is a sign that your getting closer to start potty training, you also bring me nappies when you need a butt change. We probably should start cutting down your night bottle to half soon if we want to start training you but I also swear I am going to forget to do so when bebe comes or you will just magically not want the bottle sometime soon please. 

You started to sleep through the night again after your whole canine teething phase but now your bottom ones are coming through, well they have broken through but are still giving you grief so we are up all ours of the night again and early wake ups which is not ideal. I am determined for you to not drop that afternoon nap even though majority of days you do not take it, I will just keep trying because I am not ready to loose that break time from you. Sometimes I put a sleepy-time rub on your chest and it seems to help you calm down and sleep so we need to get more of that asap and probably some more oil for the humidifier in your bedroom. 

You love trying to figure out things by yourself, like putting things into other things where they do or not belong, trying to plug my phone charger into my phone or the PlayStation remote, putting things in bags and containers and unbuckling shoes. I noticed you figured out how to stack your wooden blocks and you sure are chuffed when you get it up high. 

We went swimming alot this month in our local pool and you loved it. It was a scorcher of a day the first time we went so we only stayed for a little bit, you totally got sun-kissed even though I put sunscreen on you! Your such a water babe though! We also enrolled you in swim lesson for a term which is exciting, we did your first lesson towards the end of the month and you loved the daring, wild activities but got super freaked out by all the singing we had to endure, hell so did we! So many babies in the class and you are the oldest so hopefully things progress quickly so you can move up a class. Your attention span was quite thin despite having a nap beforehand so towards the end of the class you were a little bit fussy and did not want to partake in the activities. You naturally kick though and when we tell you to, you dislike getting water on your face so not sure how putting your head under will go! I have all the anxiety for that moment and hope you don't get traumatized so much so that you don't want to go swimming ever again. We dipped our toes in the ocean this month and we went totally unprepared of course, you would of gone straight in if we let you and you had the sweetest smile on your face every time the waves lapped at your toes. So of course we are going to do a beach trip sometime soon, hopefully this mama does not die in the heat.

You learnt how to do eskimo kisses (this deserves it's own line because its adorable)

You have become rather unruly and just plain naughty this month, I suppose it is those terrible twos, teething etc but holy moly some days you are a terror and you bring out the worst monster mum in me. I am trying my hardest to be paitent with you and to not be irrational towards you but you test me to the brink. I really do want to be that mum who tries to find understanding, who gets down to your level and tries to reason with you before jumping to irrational outbursts but it is very hard to think like that in the moment when I am sleep deprived and wanting a break from your wildness. I am trying to learn to see things with God's eyes, to see the beauty in the chaos and be kinder so forgive me.

I just hope we find a balance and routine fairly quickly when bebe #2 comes soon. (A girl can dream right?)