Friday, March 5, 2010

How Long Has It Been's been a while. Four birthdays have passed. Isha turned 2, Jared 17, Andan 6 and Justin 16. So here are some stories and photos to share (just to get you caught up).

Isha's new trike.
Momma and Isha on his 2nd Birthday.

Andan received this awesome Peacemaker Medal in his school's Peacemaker Assembly. What an awesome thing it was to see my child receive this reward! My heart was glad!

And so was he!

What a beautiful boy and an awesome photo. His dad captured this moment.

This is a Layout I created recently, of our Anniversary. We revisited Julian which is where we Honeymooned. We had an awesome day together hiking Azelia Glen Loop Trail. The trail has severely been altered by fallen trees due to recent fires and rains. We had quite an obstacle course and even thought we were off course and possibly lost at several points during the hike. I quickly metaphorically related the hike to our 3 year marriage, and as the story goes we stayed our course through many challenges and obstacles and completed the journey.

We sure did have a lot of rain for San Diego during the last couple of months. Have you ever had to contain young children indoors for days on end? If you have then you know that as soon as the sun is shinning through, you release them. So what if the backyard is a swamp? Put some old clothes on them and set them free. Don't worry they wash up well! The kids, that is. Not the clothes.

I had the honor of attending a retreat last weekend with a fun group of ladies from Sweetwater Community Church. I find God has a way with timing. He knows what you need and when you need it. I had been having some "heart" issues in the weeks prior. Heart issues are those
things that we are struggling with or dealing with at the core of our being. Those issues that you know your not handling right. It could be anger, selfishness,, bitterness , unforgiveness or any of these human traits that we seem to carry around like baggage. God had been trying to get my attention and I had been resisting Him. He would continually bring it to my attention and I continued to resist his gentle, persistent, "Julie, how about this issue." "No God, not that." In truth He just wanted me to lay it at his feet and let Him carry it. And here I find myself on this retreat. No demands of busy days and tiny voices requiring my attention and time. And in the quiet, His nudging just got stronger and stronger.
Now it is the final day of our retreat and as part of our Sunday morning service, we went off to have some time of solitude. As I sat I felt this incredible love and I finally surrendered. It felt as if I was being held in my Father's arms. And though he was correcting me he was embracing me with the love that only my Creator could give. I started to share my heart issues with Him. I started to confess and pour out my hurts and failures. He just continued to hold me in his embrace, loving me, excepting me.
As a child, I don't recall a time in my life sitting in my parents lap being disciplined yet strongly feeling their love at the same time. I'm pretty sure I would have struggled against their embrace
even if they tried. And here I am 37 years old and my Father in Heaven is allowing me to feel and experience this unconditional love like I never have before.
THIS is the same love and grace that I want my children to experience. I don't just want to be correcting them. I want them to experience and know how deeply I love them. Even in their shortcomings and their failures. I am so thankful that God finally got hold of me last weekend and I was able to rest in His arms and feel his love. It is something I am sure I will remember
I can't believe that this photo was capture. This IS the moment!