26 February 2015

My Sparkle. And more on life.

Ready for a long post?  Grab your coffee or tea and read on!  

In our family we have six boys and one girl. Our oldest son, Caleb, attends college in America.

The next three sons, Ian, Dan and Joseph, are teenagers living in our home. They attend school on site at Mattaw Children's village. 

Next is Elisha, who is now a first grader. I've fully submerged myself into the homeschool world with him. He is now keepin up with the footballers his age out on the Mattaw soccer field. 

Then there's Claire who adds all things pink and sparkly to our family. She attends the school of motherhood. Some days she's helping feed and play with our Sprouts babies. Other days she's leading the littles who live in Mattaw houses, those that aren't yet in the school at mattaw. She usually leads them around Mattaw to play barbies, make mud pies, swing, sing songs she's made up, color pretty princess pictures and scout out which house they can drink chai in. 

Then of course, there's the baby, Ezra. He is usually eating their mud pies, cutting the hair off the barbies, pushing them off the swing, dancing to their songs, eating crayons and crashing in on their tea parties. I recently wrote about Ezra on the post "Ezra and life". I also shared about life here and what sometimes being a mama looks like. More on this but I first have to share about yesterday to satisfy the grandparents and those that massively love our one and only girl of the family. 

Yesterday that girly girl turned 5!  She is indeed the sparkle in our life. 

We went with our family and Rebecca (who Claire considers her as Auntie Rebecca) to Eldoret for our son's orthodontist appointment. (Yep, you can get braces here and yep, we too are going through this phase of teenage life). So we ended up at a pool in Eldoret, then went for french fries and milkshakes. As everyone on the American side of the world is enduring what seems to be an eternal blizzard, we are in the middle of summer here. It's swimming pools and  ice cream instead of snowmen and hot chocolate.  (Oh but just you wait, you'll be enjoying the pool during your summertime while we are in what feels like eternal cold monsoon season and everything is covered in mud.) But it was the perfect day for the princess!  Thank you grandparents for the gifts sent. She felt so loved.   

So back to motherhood and mission life. I shared last time about some life lessons around here. Mainly focusing on how the simplest acts of love in our family is what raises our children into world changers. And sometimes that means focusing on our children at home more than "going out" for ministry. My whole point was that being a mama is a high honor and we don't want to forget our children as we chase our God given dreams, whether that's in foreign missions, business or whatever God might lead it to be. Being consistent with our littles is important whether that's homeschooling, bedtime bible stories and prayers, eating meals together as a family no matter how hectic life gets and just fully being present in their life.  Like this last week for me... my husband went to Turkana for an incredible week of ministry by feeding the hungry and getting to pour out love and hope everywhere they went. I was on edge to get an update everyday, my heart longing to be there!  More on this SOON. But I knew for that trip, the best thing I could do for my kids (and husband) was stay home, do school and love them in little ways. 

Then there are other times we've run out on adventure together as a family.  I mean obviously we live as a family on mission now but there's also the going out. But Holy Spirit must be our guide in every step. For us, there's not a set of rules on how we live as a mission focused family. We have to hear where the Spirit is leading and obey with fearless love. So there's one side of this whole parenthood thing where we need to focus on the family.  Then there's another BIG side of it where we need to be a family with a focus. And take our kids with us into the mission and place of ministry. 

What has God called your family to? 

It's a good question to often ask. And I would highly recommend having some goals and visions written out that you feel Jesus has given your family. We sat and did this as a family the week of New Years and it really helped us all know where we are going. I've known people to even paint their family mission on pallets and hang on the wall (http://wearethatfamily.com/2012/11/why-every-family-needs-a-mission-statement-project/). 

In a little over a week we are about to go back to Turkana. This time as a family.  Some mamas are called to go out more. Some aren't.  Where we begin to lose purpose and feel defeated as a mom is when we start to compare our lives to others.  Comparison will kill the joy in your life!  There's a great story (in the bible) about a man that kept his eyes on Jesus and walked on water but when he took his eyes off him, he sank. So be the best you. And keep your focus on Jesus.   

Last year I had the incredible opportunity to go to Congo. It was a long time dream fulfilled. We are still praying what's next in going there and what our part is in helping and loving that nation. There are very few days the children and people I met aren't on my mind, heart and prayers. If you haven't already, visit Justice Risings website and read how they're bringing massive change to that nation. 

I bring up Congo because when I went, there was this incredible prophecy given by Stacey Campbell that was for anyone going on missions that year through the organization (Burn 24\7) that I went with. IT ROCKED THIS MAMAS WORLD. I wrote it all out as quickly as I could on two papers and tucked it away in my bible. I still have it tucked away and often go back and read it to get lit up by the love of the Father and His call He gives His children to be abassadors to the nations. So on the next blog post I'll share all about it :).  One part of it, I was not expecting, was when she went into being a mama and taking your kids with you into the mission and mandate God has given.  I about lost it as it nailed me to my core on what God created us for as a family.  "We have permission to go after God with radical obedience. We don't have to decelerate because of our family. We can actually do more!  What they can add to it is powerful". 

More soon :). 

Love you all.


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