On Things that Matter.

A few days ago, a friend of mine posted this quote on facebook:

"You know, you can never get enough of what you don't really need". 
 -Matthew Kelly

Deep, right?  It has been haunting me since I read it.  In a good way.  In a convicting way.  In a way that makes me think about all the unnecessary distractions in my life.  The short moments when I lose sight of what's important and the longer stretches of time when I have deliberately lived in disobedience.   Both keeping me from a deeper relationship with God.

When I read this quote it was one of those times when I knew God was trying to get my attention.  You know, like when the teacher says "for this project you will need a partner" and, before you even look up, you can feel your friend giving you THAT look from across the room.  God was giving me THAT look.

It was just a few days earlier that I was reading this:  (not.a.coincidence.)

Psalm 4
Answer when I call, my saving God. 
In my troubles, you cleared a way;
show me favor; hear my prayer. 
How long will you people mock my honor,
love what is worthless, chase after lies?
Know that the LORD works wonders for the
the LORD hears when I call out.
Tremble and do not sin;
upon your beds ponder in silence.
Offer fitting sacrifice
and  trust in the LORD.
Many say "May we see better times!
LORD, show us the light of your face!"
But you have given my heart more joy
than they have when grain and wine abound.
In peace I shall both lie down and sleep,
 for you alone, LORD, make me secure.
(emphasis mine)
At this stage in my life, it is my temptation to love "a good day" more than I love God.  I find myself wanting "me-time" more than I want God's will to be done through me.  There have been too many days that I have skipped prayer to get the laundry started and snapped harshly so that I would get the behavior I wanted.  A moment's good behavior and clean clothes will never bring fulfillment, though.  How foolish. 

This week I was desperate for some peace in my house.  The bickering brothers were wearing on me.  But even quiet in the house does not really mean peace in the house.  Jesus in our hearts means peace in our homes.

I don't want to live my life striving after things that I don't need, that don't matter. 
If I am walking in Truth, I don't need a "good day".  I need Jesus. 

You alone, LORD, make me secure.

So, how long will we love what is worthless?  I don't know what it is that you're trying to "get enough" of today.  I don't know what worthless things you have been loving.

Is it Clothes?  Food?  Sleep?  Men?  Money?  Success? The feeling of being liked/wanted/needed? 

"You can never get enough of what you don't really need".

Let us pray.


73 Seconds.

Well, hello strangers. 

August was a crazy but super fun month of visiting for us.  We went to South Carolina and we also went on a very quick trip to Iowa... I'm talking less than 48 hours, but oh-so-worth it. We also had about 5 different friends/family members visit us in Wisconsin.  We had such an awesome time seeing everyone.  The boys just savor the time with the people they love but don't get to see often enough.  We all do.  We really did appreciate every moment with these precious people.  So, if you are one of them, thank you so much for loving us and for being such faithful friends.

And if we didn't get to see you, I'm sorry.  Let's work on that.

So, I have about 3 very serious posts in the making, but I'm not feeling very serious this evening, and I didn't want to wait any longer on posting...since it's been, you know, six weeks or so.

This is the part where I'm at a total loss for a good segway, so here we go:
Today, we went to the Farmer's Market.  We hadn't been for over a month, with all the visiting and what-not.  And, oh my friends, the spicy cheese bread did not disappoint.  I'm pretty sure that Judah thought he had died and gone to heaven.  The kid just loves food.  (I have no idea where he gets it)  He sat still and ate, and ate, and ATE for a good solid 20 minutes.  Donuts, cheese curds, spicy cheese bread, and muffins. 

And, I know you're thinking, "wow, I thought people went to the farmer's market to buy produce".  Well, sure.  Sure they do.  And we did get some great deals on produce today...but I need to be honest...the cheese bread trumps the produce any day.

We love taking our blanket and sitting on the capital lawn and eating (almost) a whole loaf of cheese bread between the five of us.  We also love the produce, and strolling down some of the other side streets where vendors sell art and jewelry and pottery.  We love the street musicians. 

But, let me tell you what we don't love:  the girls that walk around offering free balloons to children.

Ok, the girls seem just fine.  Very sweet, in fact.  It's the balloons that we despise.  And I know...I know I'm being judged right now for being a total fun-hater of a mom. 

How can I hate balloons you ask?  Well, let me tell you, friends. 

Each of our three boys got a balloon today.  And oh the joy.  It was magical.  (And what is it about balloons anyway?  What is so amazing about this floating sphere?  I don't know.  But I do know, that if one child has a balloon, every other child in a 100 yard radius knows about it and is coveting that balloon in their little heart).  So, you basically can't say "no" when someone offers your kid a free balloon.  And, as I mentioned, it does seem like their lives are filled with utter bliss.

For 73 seconds.

Seventy-three glorious seconds.  And then, all Hell breaks loose. 

We had securely tied said balloons around the older boys' wrists and we tied the third balloon onto Silas' stroller.  Bliss ensued for 73 seconds, and then Judah slipped his string off his wrist and let go.  He screams "You dropped balloon!" but, of course, it's too late.  I picked him up and told him I knew how disappointed he was.  We waved bye-bye to the balloon as it floated up into the blue sky.  He cried.  I cuddled him a little more and we continued to talk about how he was sad about his balloon.  We then attempted to start walking back toward the parking ramp.  About every five feet he would go all limp and scream "You dropped balloon!" 

Bliss, no?

Another 5 minutes pass as we get some produce along the walk back to the car.  Judah and Silas are now both messing with the balloon attached to the stroller and Judah continues to lament his "dropped balloon!" while trying to steal his brother's.  Sure enough, balloon number two slips off the stroller handle and out into the great unknown. 

More wailing and gnashing of teeth ensues.

Roman managed to keep his balloon the whole morning.  Good job, buddy.  Except that this made him the target for the rage of the little boys on the way home.  Judah and Silas basically turned into balloon-thirsty zombies.  Roman even tried to share his balloon a couple of times but it was just so dangerous.  The screaming and the thrashing over the one surviving balloon....

Oh my.

We really did have a very pleasant day all around.

But, we might be those parents who say "no" to the free balloons next time.