We are in a hazy phase of life where I am not ever sure what day it is or what time it is. It is a combination of raising medically complex children but also raising one very active and robust toddler. I thank God often for the “typical” even though in the moment the chaos isn’t always sparking thankful thoughts in me.
Levi is a toddler tornado and loves to capitalize on moments when my focus is elsewhere. He waits until I have to make a phone call to jump in his Power Wheels and head for the tree line. This week he has been grounded from his car, which is a sentence I didn’t think I would ever have to say about my three year old.
The dogs have become his newest focus in life, and bossing them around brings him such delight. I laugh and laugh at the photos I take of them, seeing the “rescue me mom” look in their eyes.
And while Levi produces some big sighs from me throughout the day he also elicits some heart warming moments that I will never forget. Today I sat him up from a diaper change and he unprompted said “Happy Mother’s Day”. It was the sweetest little voice, so I of course made him do it again for the camera so I could hear it again 20 years from now.
As I heard those words roll of his lips I had to keep myself from crying, knowing that when we made the decision for his big vocal cord surgery we were exchanging his voice for his trach free breathing. We grieved over neither of our children being able to speak audible, coherent words and God surprised us all with the most beautiful voice I could imagine. What a true gift those sounds are to a weary momma heart.
We pray for miracles, and that little voice reminds me of the goodness of God.
Malachi has also had a great week, getting to spend a lot of time with his buddies. He even got to drive the neighbors tractor for a bit!
On Thursday night his big seizures sparked again, affirming to us that the new med is building up in his system and proving to be too big a dose. We will continue to tweak and adjust until we find the perfect balance. When he goes into those sessions of large seizures he isn’t able to get more than 3-4 hours of sleep, and lack of sleep is a huge trigger for even more seizures. We get caught in a vicious cycle that takes days to recover from.
One of the pups got a little too excited this week and jumped up to kiss Malachi’s face, nicking his face in the process. Malachi didn’t make a peep about it, excited to get kisses from his buddies.
We have been working with the dogs on going out in public and maintaining their training. We take them one at a time, and Malachi is so much happier with the company it provides him. It is so sweet to watch him put his hand out to reach for them.
This week I had the privilege of speaking at a women’s event at a church in Chattanooga. The theme was “Precious In his Sight” and I was so touched when I showed up and all of the decor was themed around Malachi and Levi. They had printed out over a hundred photos of the boys and used them as the centerpieces, bulletin board, and decor around the church. Everywhere I looked I saw their sweet faces and it was such a blessing to me.
It was so rejuvenating to me to be able to spend time in prayer about what specifically God wanted me to share with this group of women. I crave those moments with God where I can ask Him to guide me and He very clearly does so. It reminds me of the importance of my relationship with God being an intimate one that requires constant communication and connection.
God very specifically led me to talking with this group about how we allow our brokenness to cause us question our usefulness in the kingdom of God.
Psalm 127:3-5 “Behold, children are a gift of the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them; They will not be ashamed when they speak with their enemies in the gate.”
A few years ago I really struggled with this verse; many of you may remember me blogging specifically about this very thing. My arrows look so different than the ones I pictured in my mind. Each surgery, hospitalization, diagnosis has changed them from the “perfect” arrows that this verse conjures up and replaced them with arrows filled with imperfections.
You might also be an imperfect arrow. You may have something in your past, a regret, a broken relationship, a diagnosis that has convinced you that you are too unreliable imperfect to pierce this world for God. But it is those very imperfections that strip us of our pride and allow us to be beautiful, humble instruments for the Lord.
God isn’t looking for the perfect. He is looking for the obedient and the willing.
We foolishly believe that it takes arrows to complete the work of God. But in reality the Bible shows us time and time again that He takes great delight in using the most inconspicuous tools for His greatest victories.
David used a rock to slay a giant.
Joshua’s army used ram’s horns and shouting to take down a kingdom.
Gideon and his 300 men used torches and clay pots to terrify and overcome an army.
How foolish we are to believe that God requires perfect arrows to complete His greatest tasks. And how embarrassing it is that we often use the excuses of being unqualified to not pursue the paths He is calling us to.
I am so honored that God has chosen us to carry such beautifully unique arrows in our quiver. And the piercing that they have already done is such a testament to the power of God.
May we always remain malleable in the hands of the hands of the Potter so that we can become any instrument He calls us to be. And may we desire the same of our children, even when it means they don’t fit the vision we have for their lives.