Sunday, January 27, 2013

I Am A Daughter; Part Two

I am a daughter! Yet somedays it is easier to be that daugher than other days. As many of you know who read this blog, I am a daughter of a woman who lives with a mental illness. She has taught me more about faith and life than I can even begin to tell you. She has never let her illness get in the way of who she is. She is the most faith-filled woman of God and has nurtured faith in both me and my sister.

Yet somedays it is harder for me to be the woman she has created me to be. Perhaps I am writing this blog post because that good ol' Lutheran guilt has slipped in. But I really think I am writing it because I too am human. There are days that I find myself snapping back when she asks me the same question twice. Then within a moments notice, I realize that I snapped back. Today she called me as she does every Sunday and asked me if I preached. I told her no, but I know I said it rather quietly because I was in a major department store. She asked again and I said "No" again. It's these little moments that make me realize that I am a sinner just like everyone of us is a sinner. And I wish I wouldn't be so quick to react.God knows I love her with every fiber of my being just like she loves me and my sister with every fiber of her being. Yet it isn't easy.

It isn't easy being the daughter of someone who lives with a mental illness. There are days that I wish my parents wouldn't have gotten divorced. There are days that I wish mental illness wasn't part of what I am called to share and educate about in this world. There are days (probably more than I care to admit) when I ache, ache to have my mama whole; free from this illness. I wonder who will go wedding dress shopping with me when I finally find my Mr. Right. But then I remember that God gave her to me for a reason; to love and to cherish. I am reminded of these words, "For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord, plans to prosper and not to harm you; plans to give you a hope and a future."---Jeremiah 29:11

When I snap back, my mom forgives me without a second thought. When I ache, God reminds me that I am not alone; that I am never alone. God reminds me every day of God's gifts of grace. That gift of grace is continually shown to me through my mama. God's grace is a gift that is freely given. And in that grace, God reminds me that we dont always understand why things happen in life but that God walks with us. God shows us daily what God's love, grace, mercy and peace look like. And knowing this grace, may we all share that grace in the world.

I love my mama with all of my heart. Yet somedays it is easier to say I am her daughter. Growing up I have a feeling she probably said that about me and my sister somedays too yet she continued and continues to love us. So my friends....

I AM A DAUGHTER (a daughter of someone who daily lives with a mental illness)

Friday, January 18, 2013

Smilin' Friday Five

For this Friday Five, what makes you smile? Remembering that Meister Eckhart said that if you pray "thank you" that that is enough of a prayer, share with us five things, memories, or activities that bring you smiles and gratitude.

1. One of my favorite memories is when I was going to seminary at the Castle. My good friends and I headed to the Field of Dreams for the Day. The guys, my friend L and I decided to go through the corn maze. L and I went off one way and the boys went off the other way. Next thing we know the boys decided to scare us and attack us with corn stalks. I remember laughing all the way back to Dbq! (There are so many stories from seminary days that put a smile on my face...visiting in Milwaukee, Ocktober fests, going on a road trip with my friend H, and so many more)

2. Holding a baby or spending time with my fave infants always puts a smile on my face. I LOVE BABIES...and can't wait to be a mama!

3. My Consecration as a Diaconal Minister in the ELCA. My sister was teaching in AZ and told me that she wasn't able to come. She surprised me and came to the consecration. Two of my best friends drove through the night, arriving at my dads at 1 am, just so they could be there to share in this special day. It was such a holy day and I was surrounded by so many wonderful friends and family who walked with me on this journey.

4. SuperAwesomeBibleCamp ALWAYS puts a smile on my face! It is the place that nurtured me into the woman of faith that I am today! I have so many great memories of that place.

5. Lutheran Academy of the Rockies ---hiking in the Rockies, meeting wonderful new people, learning, etc!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Psalm 30

There is something so incredibly holy about this day for me! Three years ago on Jan 12 the earthquake hit in Haiti. I remember wondering if my friends were ok and so much more!

I remember getting a phone call two mornings later (this date three years ago) from a friend! I remember her telling me that Ben was confirmed dead. I remember standing outside and crying together! I remember walking into the refectory and not being able to get the words out as our new friends asked if we had any news!

But what I remember most was the worship that my small group planned and led that evening. It was such a holy worship filled experience. I remember walking into the chapel as Ben's version of Psalm 30 piped through the speakers. I remember goosebumps as we sang the song "Freedom is Coming!" Little did we know that it was one of the most influential songs in Ben's life! I remember feeling a sense of peace as I was surrounded by old and new friends!

To this day, Psalm 30 holds a special place in my heart. Psalm 30 reminds that life does come out of death. Psalm 30 reminds me to continue to pray for our Haitian brothers and sisters. Psalm 30 reminds me that God does eventually take our mourning and turn it into dancing!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Mourning into Dancing

Three years ago on this day,I remember sitting at the Diaconal Ministry Formation Event with my small group that day. We began our day listening to music from Ben and Jon Larson. Sitting in that room, we strained to listen to the words "hands parted after prayer like cups raised to receive!"

Later that afternoon, the news broke about the earthquake! Little did we know that ours and so many lives would be changed that day! I am thankful that I was with friends on this day as we mourned and grieved together!

Three years later there is still so much to do in Haiti! May we always remember and never forget! For I truly believe that God will one day turn our "mourning into dancing!"

Friday, January 11, 2013

Wheres Its Home Friday Five

So: Tell us your favorite homes for five things, the places that you can always and reliably find them.

(1) My Kindle! It is ALWAYS on the nightstand in my bedroom.

(2) Scotch Tape. It can always be found in the junk drawer. That was where Mom always kept it and now that it was where I keep it too.

(3)Toilet Paper...under the sink in the cabinet

(4)My Pampered Chef can strainer. I love that little kitchen utensil. And it is always in the silverware drawer.

(5) My Poetry Binder On the right side, bottom shelf of the bookcase in my living room! :)