22) Our home church has sort of disbanded this week. Not in a bad way; we're not all mad at each other or anything; we've just all decided it's not really working anymore. And I'm a little sad. A little anxious. A little wondering what the heck that detour was all about because I was sure we were following God. As it has been slowly disbanding, I've been comforted with the words of Jeremiah, which providentially I've been reading through this week. Jeremiah 29-33 contains a lot of beautiful language about God's heart for His people and where He wants to take them in their life journeys. We all know the famous Jeremiah 29:11, "For I know the plans I have for you; plans to prosper you and not to harm you; plans to give you a future and a hope." The 365 Promises of God devotion I'm reading in conjunction with it says that the original Hebrew was that His plans were for our SHALOM. Literally, our completeness. Our peace. His plans move us forward, not backward. No matter what it may seem like. His plans are to enrich us, not diminish us (Jeremiah 30:19), no matter what our feelings tell us. "For I will restore health to you and heal you of your wounds," says the Lord in Jeremiah 30:17. He extends grace in the wilderness (Jer 31:2) and waters our souls (Jer 31:12). "Yes, I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will assuredly plant them in this land, with all My heart and with all My soul." -Jer 32:41. I trust this in this moment, although I'm wondering what's next. I don't want to jump around every 6 months. I want to be planted in the land where He wants us and I want our family to flourish there. I don't know where we will go tomorrow but we will move forward knowing that He is good and He does only good (Psalm 119:68).
23) Yesterday was one of those glorious days where you feel like, despite yourself, your kids really are learning and life really is becoming a school. Fridays are our busy days. Our "go to town" days, the only day of the week that we have to be somewhere at any certain time. Allie and Maggie have violin and piano on Friday mornings in Huntsville, and while they are there I take the "littles" to Hays Nature Preserve. The leaves were brilliantly colored, the air was cool and crisp, and we savored the last few leftover cupcakes with sprinkles that our friends the Nelsons had brought me for my birthday. While we were there, I got a message from a friend about NaNoWriMo, which Allie and I are going to attempt this year. We went back to pick up "the bigs", then across town for Sam's weekly allergy appointment with Dr. Jarvis. We always learn so much from her. She gave me some lemon mint from her garden and rosemary oil for our soap. We talked about "bowels" in the King James Version and how it's used interchangeably to mean physical bowels and the seat of character traits and emotions and courage and compassion and all those wonderful things. Once again, it is so amazing how intricately linked our minds, bodies, souls and spirits really are. From there we took a picnic to eat outside the downtown library, where we chose fresh new books for this week's reading. Our last stop before coming home was the Far East Market for a few items to make Thai Chicken-Coconut Soup with Galanga Root. We saw a dragonfruit, something we had never tried, and decided we needed to try it (at the beach we tried star fruit for the first time. We are into trying new things). We came home and made the soup, learning how to use lemongrass and galanga root. We ate the dragonfruit for dessert, learning that it is a "superfood" that we should probably be eating every day. Plus it looks cool. Afterwards we put on our PJs and sat in the yard on blankets to watch the Penumberal Lunar Eclipse. Not very dramatic visually, but it sure was fun to play outside together as a family under the bright full moon, chasing our moon shadows and wondering if we would get moon burn.
24) Bethany is asleep, Brian has everyone else outside building a fort, and I'm supposed to be making a grocery list. I really better get to that. . .
11 more things, coming up soon I am sure. Stay tuned. . .