and put them in a box to give away," I said.
Christmas had come and gone, and the invasion of new toys demanded
donation and reorganization. Reduce - let go - that's what Jen Hatmaker would do.
And gosh darn it, who doesn't want to be a little like her?!
As I sat on the floor in my children's bedroom and collected the small gadgets -
the soft ones, the ones that light up, that sing, stack, and hold the imagination,
fascination of such tiny minds, a spark of HOPE flared in my heart and I knew that
this act of de-cluttering was being done out of bitterness and despair.
With not being able to conceive a third child - and no promise of conception in the near
future - I was shouting "FINE, God... You've let my body betray me! So I will stand
with my hands on my hips, eyes laser-focused with cheeks glazed in tears, jaw clenched -
and roar back at You..." by throwing away all the baby toys?! Can we say hormonal?
A moment of grace was given that day, as I sat in the sea of toys on the floor.
And rather than a box labeled "NEEDY," I grabbed a Trader Joe's bag (because I think
they are so beautiful) and filled it with the little singing phone, the stacking rings,
rattles, a light-up helicopter, blocks of all colors and sizes for the LIFE
that I believe God is going to give me.
And that's when it hit me. My word for the year...
God hasn't sent me a direct message saying that life will come in the form of a baby -
but I know that He IS the life-giver, the life-breather - and He wants to blow His
healing grace into my world just as He did in the creation of Adam and Eve.
It is for being joyful in the journey. This year is for bringing
LIFE to my family with our diet changes. I will be seizing more moments -
to laugh, to let go, to praise God. I will be searching for opportunities
to bring LIFE to those around me. This year is for digging deeper in my
soul and removing the memories, the resentment that brings death into
my life. LIFE - I know it will come. Because He tells us,
"Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door
will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds;
and to him who knocks, the door will be opened." - Matthew 7:7
Heaven matters. Not the size of my house or the number of shoes in my closet.
The details are passing. Suffering is not fruitless. All an intricate web - a system -
a plan to usher our souls into eternity. Fire refines. Death is not the end.
I'm running out to meet you, Lord. Arms wide open in that field of wild flowers.
My word for this year is LIFE - and I believe that someday I will pull out that
bag from Trader Joe's that has been lovingly packed away - the one filled with tiny toys -
and introduce them one by one to my baby #3.
Do you have a word for the year? I'd love to hear your story!