Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Farmer's Daughter

Words can define who you think you are and sometimes we let the reflection in the mirror or the weight on the scale define us. I want to be defined for nothing that has to do with me. 
This week has been a discovery week for me. For the first time in 2 years my family is not in Belize on a mission trip during Spring Break. My heart and prayers are there but physically we are home on the farm. A farm with a legacy longer and older than the city I live in. 
I am the fourth generation to call this farm home. My children are the fifth. Generations ago there were animals, milk production and no such thing as phones much less blogs. Two generations ago there were three brothers and a sister who worked the same fields I do.  The floors in the house I live in were once tiptoed on at 3 am for morning milkings at the dairy farm.  There was work and there was hard work. Even though my daddy made me help on the farm growing up, I don't know half about the hard work that came before me. Defining characteristics of a generation come and gone. What will be said of me, the farmer's daughter? 
There are parts of this farm so overgrown and boarded up that remind me of the condition of my heart. Just looking at this old covered wagon that was home to chickens tells a story of neglect. What and who have I neglected today? But each day we wake up we get to do it again. Write the story. 
We get to not be defined but we get to leave it behind. We tear down what we boarded up. We let the sun come in. We get ready for new life. We open up to what we shut out. 
And maybe we dream a little about being not the farmer's daughter but the farmer.  Maybe we start a new chapter. Maybe just maybe we open the door to something new. 

And he who was seated on the throne said, "Behold, I am making all things new." Also he said, "Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true." (Revelation 21:5 ESV)

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Letting Them Be A Loser

This has been a debated topic in my house for years.  Travel ball vs. Park Ball. This year both kids made the switch to travel. There is a whole other blog just about that decision and that debate. However, we feel we have made the right decision with both kids at this stage in their life. Marlee is playing with her best friends and the best parents. Tyler is playing with his best friend and his coach is from our church. As parents our goal for sports is to make sure they are having fun and being active. Simple. Real simple. 

Marlee's team entered their first tournament this past weekend. They went 0-4. After being run ruled by a team, she came out of dugout and looked at me and said, "this is the most fun!" Trust me when I say this is not always the case. There have been tears over losing. There have been tears over a spelling test or two but it made me stop and think how many times as a parent do I prevent her from losing? When I am playing UNO do I let her win? What if your child never learns to lose and smile? What kind of adult does that make.  Life will be full of success. Life will be full of failures.If you are defining success as merely the absence of failure, that’s a sad way to live your life.  Anyone can avoid failure by just having low expectations. But if you define success as learning from your failures, suddenly losing the ball game is fun. 

What is in the best interest of my children isn't thousands of baseball and softball games. What is important to my children? Do we expect too much of children today? Do we expect too little of children today?  Is it okay with me if my child is in the middle? 

It's okay with me. 

Do I want them to taste victory? Yes. I love to win as much as the next crazy yelling momma but I have to parent both. 

Letting them forget something.

Letting them do the school project themselves. 

Letting them recieve the consequence. 

Letting them be a loser. 

But many who are first will be last, and the last first. (Matthew 19:30 ESV)