Sunday, October 13, 2013

Grandparenting With Grace: God Working

God has an amazing way of working in each individual person's life. I have gone from hate (for my daughter) to brokenheartedness in my situation. As I watch my precious grandchild grow into an amazing and intelligent person, I am broken-knowing that my daughter is missing that which is so precious and important.

I may never understand. I may never have answers. However, I do know this precious child is what, and who, I am called to minister to. Never before has God's direction been ever so clear to me. I am humbled by the trust and affirmation He has given me. Please cover me in prayer as I walk this path in utter amazement of His confidence.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Grandparenting with Grace:despairing

 I have been in despair for the past 2 1/2 years. Sometimes the crippling lying in the fetal position-if only in my mind- kind. I was entering the empty nest period of life, my youngest going off to college when my oldest gave my husband and me the privilege of raising our precious grandchild-then not yet 2 years old. We had been pretty involved up to this point, but now it was all us, still is. I won’t go into details, just that the love is strong. The desire is there. But the fear, the feeling of unfairness that I should have to once again be there all this way through for another-in this world that can so easily crush a child, when I have no control-can only trust and it’s so hard to trust at times. I cannot make the way clear for this child. So I pray and try to trust. But more often than not I fail and find myself deep in despair knowing what could happen when she’s not in my care but in the care of the one who should love so intensely she would die to protect. Instead, I would die protecting her if I could, if need be-yet I cannot protect. I can only love, and that so intensely I ache. Despair comes, moving over me. I fight to rip it off and spend my day loving, teaching, holding, and praying-praying even when the words won’t come. I know He lives, I know He hears. I know I am where He wants me to be even when it isn’t where I wanted to be. I am working on accepting it all and making it beautiful. I also know that it is okay to hurt, to struggle and find one’s way through to the other side in my own time. It’s okay to question to want it different- for even Jesus asked God if it had to be. He felt anxiety and sweat blood all for me. His body hung broken for all to see so I could fall at the foot of the cross. He lives and I can ask for the eternity I was created for. How can I not do a fraction of that for one little life?

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Grandparenting with Grace: The true meaning of Easter

 With Easter approaching I have  been faced with answering questions. It is interesting how much this little one of mine 'catches' in the living and going about our daily lives as pertains to Easter. I have found some neat activities to do together besides the annual dyeing of Easter eggs and the visit by the Easter Bunny, both are fun yet lack the true meaning to the Easter season. So we have ventured into looking at the true reason for the season-JESUS- Small children are so open and true. The questions have challenged me to truly look at my faith. When I answer a question I am renewing my relationship with the Savior. I am solidifying my faith in His promises and looking at my need for a Savior. If you are interested in teaching your little ones about Jesus try these links. 

Grandparentin with Grace: When enough is enough

I believe I am an observant person, and when my grandchild continued to toe walk past 22 months I became concerned, when it stretched into 3 years I continually repeated to her doctor the need for sensory testing. I chose the clinic and we have been going since September of 2012.  Being we go weekly to an hour of PT and OT, you would think we would have plenty to do, but never have I been assigned activities to do over the week. I have just done on my own. I believe it is time to look else where for help. It seems strange to me that the PT didn't even realize the child walks on her toes 99% of the time. So why have we continued to go since last September? Good question,  time to move on. I think we will try Gillette Children's next since years of toe walking has  to affect the alignment of a growing child's skeletal and muscular system.

So I found this awesome site to go to for fantastic ideas to help me work on issues my grandchild has with SPD.  I can usually come up with plenty, but here is a place to go when I cannot think. Many of our issues are caused by a lack of depth perception. Can you imagine seeing the world totally flat? Up in a tree you cannot judge the distance to the ground, so 2 feet up is no different than 25 feet up-looking down it all looks flat-add to that the fact that in your world the objects on the ground are moving (because your eyes don't work together and your brain switches between eyes without your consent).  Try this. Close your left eye and focus on an object with your right eye- now quick shut your right eye and open the left. Did the object seem to move? That is what happens in my grandchild's world, only the brain switches eyes without being told to (and without closing the eye, the brain just shuts the eye off, or the child sees double). This is a non recognized disability. She's not blind, she is cognitively smart as can be, she will struggle, people will judge her, and I will fight to have her understood. Life will be a challenge, but we will prevail.    

So many gains have already been made, but I cannot sit idly by and expect the "professionals" will do right by us. They do their best, gains are made, yet more needs to be addressed. It all falls back on my realizing when it is time to move on and finding the right path. Life is a journey and nothing is easy. I have realized it will not just happen-it takes effort and attention

Friday, March 22, 2013

Grandparenting With Grace: Living in obedience

Over the past few years God has truly been teaching me contentment in where I am. If you are like me, we plan out our future as if we own it. We leave little space for God to work, and when He shows up, derailing our plans, we become angry. I used to jokingly say that I wished God would send me a postcard specifically telling me what He wanted me to do in a particular situation. Well I believe I was quite foolish to say that. For indeed He has written down what I am to do. As a matter of fact He has given me an entire book. What is a measly postcard compared to His Holy Word? Besides, with my track record, I doubt a postcard would have made much of a difference.

While it is true I am unable to just go do what I want to do, when I want to do it- I am blessed beyond measure with the love and trust of a precious little person. I believe with every fiber of my being that God has a special and wonderful plan for this child's life. (“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” Jeremiah 29:11, NIV). He will use her mightily for His good purpose and Glory. She amazes me daily with her quickness of mind, and tenderness of spirit. I am determined to cover her in prayer and bow down before my Father God to obediently and gently hold the clay that He, the Master Potter, is shaping and forming right before my eyes to be His masterpiece. ("O LORD, you are our Father; and we are clay, and you are our potter; we are all the work of your hands." Isaiah 64:8, ISV) This love I feel within my heart for this child is indescribable. And if I love this deeply, wow-God You are amazing in your love.

Beyond the tiring days, the running for PT and OT, preschool, doctor and dentist appointments, extra laundry and the clutter of toys everywhere, the demand for the dressing of dolls, stuffed animal picnics, the rescue from 20' up a tree, the temper tantrums, etc., there is my pot of gold at the end of a rainbow. The promises of God fulfilled for one's obedience. For today is not the end of all things, there is tomorrow-and if not tomorrow there is eternity. I am made for eternity. ("So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal." 2 Corinthians 4:18, NIV ) Until then I will worship and honor my God. I will give thanksgiving for His blessings, trust in His goodness when I do not understand, and love; Oh will I love.

1 Samuel 15:22- 23, NIV
". . . Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices
as much as in obeying the Lord?
To obey is better than sacrifice,
and to heed is better than the fat of rams.
For rebellion is like the sin of divination,
and arrogance like the evil of idolatry.
Because you have rejected the word of the Lord,
he has rejected you . . .”

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Grandparenting With Grace: Clarifying-Accident; Mistake; Sin

In light of the Steubenville tragedy I believe we have to assess what we are teaching our children, or perhaps what we are not teaching our children. I believe we need to teach 3 things each and every day. Now many of you may disagree, because the word sin has no place in your vocabulary.

I have begun to purposefully teach my grand-daughter the meaning of the words/actions of accident, , mistake, and sin. She is ripe for the learning as she is telling me "Grandma I had an accident." "Grandma, I made a mistake."  "Grandma, is this a sin?"

Let's clarify definitions:

an undesirable or unfortunate happening that occurs unintentionally and usually results in harm, injury, damage, or loss; casualty; mishap
1. an error in action, calculation, opinion, or judgment caused by poor reasoning, carelessness, insufficient knowledge, etc.
2.a misunderstanding or misconception.

1. transgression of divine law: the sin of Adam.

2. any act regarded as such a transgression, especially a willful or deliberate violation of some religious or moral principle.
 (All definitions are from
 One may question whether a 4 year old can willingly sin. I have been told by the "professional" in my ECFE class children do not lie on purpose-I disagree. My granddaughter lies to avoid punishment, disapproval, or making me unhappy/angry. These are the same reasons I lie. Yes, I lie. I sin. Horrific and unsettling as it is- I need to admit it. How can I teach a child what sin is and how to refrain from it or admit sin if I can't admit I am guilty? Impossible. 

Each of these definitions needs to be attached to the actions of every day living in order for a child to learn the difference. Spilling a glass of milk can be any one of the three, depending on why or how it was done. An accident would be inadvertently knocking the glass over during meal time. A mistake would be, over-filling the glass. A sin would be pouring the milk out purposely to make a mess, knowing it angers another. A questionable "sinful" spilling would be fooling around at the table after being asked not to and spilling one's milk-disobedience. (Handle that "child's" behavior carefully. Be sure to target the disobedience, while at the same time understanding a child's childish behavior.)  

My point is, if we do not teach our children the difference in intent, they have no clue as to what is acceptable behavior. But please- teach with love. Teach with a heart burdened to do God's perfect will. And know you will suffer the consequences of accidents.  You will make mistakes.  You  will sin. But I implore you to continue on in good faith, the task set before you-until He calls you home. For not to do so is sin.
(Hebrews 12:1 "Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us")

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Grandparenting with Grace: Grace so amazing

I may continue to  struggle, or one could say wallow. In Self-pity. I am ashamed. How did I become this person I am? How did I become so ungrateful for all I have and when did I start focusing on what is missing, what I want, how it should be? My way.

I am so glad I came across and Ann Voskamp. I am certainly put to shame by her quiet thankfulness. My life is God planned, and God directed. It doesn't have to be special in the eyes of anyone except God- not even me.

I remember many times saying that, "If God would just send me a postcard telling me exactly what He wants me to do- I'd gladly do it." Well He has and I still respond foolishly. It has been spelled out clearly to me exactly what is being asked.

May I be grateful for all I have, all I will have, and the love I am capable of receiving and giving. may I truly be in awe of the trust, faith, and belief my God has shown me-may I return a fraction back.

Thank God for grace so amazing..

Grandparenting with Grace: Fulfilling His will

It is amazing how God can use others to renew us. I am so thankful for our new Pastor, not that our interim, or previous, Pastor was not inspiring. However, I have really needed these recent sermons.

I had my  next ten years planned, and things fell apart. I was angry. I was bitter. I felt cheated out of time for myself. Yet today when I hear that dear sweet voice telling me I am loved, how can I not just squeeze that precious child? I know what is important. I know what I am being called to do. It may not be what I thought it would be, but it is what He is calling me to do. That is all that matters. My obedience is what He will reward me for, and I am already being rewarded. The blessings abound. My heart cannot hold the love I feel for this child. All I had planned is of no importance.

In the past I have always believed I was ready to do God's will. I wanted Him to be clear, write it out for me so I could please Him and fulfill His plan. It's funny how I thought I was so willing, yet I realize all my life I have been kicking and screaming through what He calls me to endure. What He asks me to accomplish for Him. My prayer today? That I have ears to better hear His whispered requests. That I have eyes that see beyond my own desires. That my hands eagerly reach out to whom He wants me to touch. That my feet are quick to move for His purpose, and that my heart remains open regardless of what life hands me.

Fear can be such an enemy of obedience to God. Yet fearing what "could happen" so robs one of the joy of today. I want today's joy. Fear has no place in my life if I am to do His will. If I am to be Him to others, I cannot fear.

Grandparenting with Grace: The Problem with pride

Tuesday, October 9, 2012
I have been reading and working my way through the book Brokenness the Heart God Revives by Nancy Leigh Demoss and published by Moody Press. I find that my occasionally falling into the pits of giving myself a pity part is a sign that I suffer from the sin of pride. Yup, there it is- Pride, the culprit that is ruining my life. Now this is something I can do something about (Is that pride, being so sure?). Yet, as I try to eradicate pride from my life, I find it lurking behind every corner, beyond every hurdle  I manage to clear, this thing called pride gathers new life and masquerades as another unique and companionable form.

I believe pride, in some shape or form, is probably the basis of every sinful action or thought I have. Pride is so easily disguised.  It is easy to dress pride as living a godly lifestyle. Pride can be dressed up in the garment of ensuring my rights are not being overlooked. Pride parades around as a desire for recognition and affirmation. Pride can slow dance me right into isolation, believing that no one understands and no one cares about me. Pride is a nasty companion. It is so deceptive and damaging because it prohibits me from enjoying what I have, asking for what I need, and allowing God to transform my life.

I wonder at times why God seem so far removed from my cries. Could it be my friend Pride has driven Him into the distance? Psalm 138:6 states, "Though the Lord is on high, yet He regards the lowly; but the proud He knows from afar." It may take the rest of my earthly life to die to Pride, but each day I pray that with God's help one more deceptively dressed friend of Pride will be recognized and left to wither when I refuse to give it life. Perhaps in denying Pride I will become who it is God is calling me to be and He will become my ever present companion, replacing Pride. I do believe I just might enjoy the change of company.

Grandparenting With Grace: Today the Grace Eludes Me

Wednesday, September 26, 2012
Some days are just not fun. I am reminded again that I cannot control how each day will progress. I can plan, but more often than not, plans do not unfold as expected. Take this last Monday for example, I had some errands to run and then the afternoon was going to be spent at home getting a few things done and enjoying the beautiful day. However, my grandchild decided to have one melt-down after another,,,, until I had one of my own. Yes, I became as mature as the screaming, thrashing 3 year old in the back seat. Usually I can hold it together and talk her down from whatever set her off. Monday, nothing worked. Instead, after each burst of temper and emotion-another followed with her next breath. Nothing got done. To make matters worse we were in the car on the way to an appointment, which I canceled. Silly me, I had pulled over for her to watch two Bald Eagles on the side of the road--huge and majestic birds flying off, then returning to eat some road kill. The melt down was caused by not being able to see the road kill. Had I ignored the Eagles perhaps we could have avoided the melt down? Her first melt down that morning had been over not being able to hug and kiss the cats goodbye after their vet appointment before we left for the chiropractor (after dropping them off back at home), they were too quick getting out of their crates. No chiropractor, no groceries. We turned around and went home. Unfortunately it continued to be meltdown day. Every request, every correction was met with a meltdown. Finally I just put her to bed. She slept for 2 hours. Go figure, it was only 11:30 am, she had slept in til 8 am. I never thought she could be so tired. But, I was. Tired of the crying, screaming, demanding. Tired of trying so hard to get it right. Tired of holding everything together for everyone. Tired of wanting so much and having to settle for this--the muddling through of raising another child. I don't care what any expert tells me, or you, we never get it "right" (perfect) because all situations are different and each child unique. I know I was a better mother 20-30 years ago, no matter  the experience I have gained since. I wish I had that same energy and expectation I had back then, the hopefulness for the future. I have too much knowledge, too much experience and I am tired. Monday I was happy. Looking forward to the week, but Monday drained me and today I am still sad, grieving for HOPE.  She seems to have gotten away from me.

There is so much that needs to be done. Just the simple tasks of everyday life. I can't seem to get them done when I am drained by the demand for patience that is beyond what I have to give. My husband doesn't understand that once drained of patience, energy is not easily available to give to other tasks-or even enjoyable activities. For even my enjoyable activities demand patience. For example, sewing, interacting with my horses, teaching a Sunday school class, etc, etc. You get the picture here? There are days I have nothing left to give. I have nothing, I am an empty vessel crying out to be filled. I pray, read scripture. I cry and keep trying. But I am alone, so alone. Where can encouragement be found? I have asked for help, but there is none to be found. There are few to ask to give me a break. My friends are busy with their lives and do not like the interruption of a child during our conversations or visits, so these have become few. I know God must be at work in this, but it really feels like a long distance relationship.In addition, I have no rights, no authority. I am reminded of this constantly, being told I need the mother's signature- information cannot be released to me, even though I am the one bringing the child everywhere telling whoever what needs to be known. I say screw it. Each day I become a little more invisible, I fear one day I will cease even being able to see myself.

I also know I am dealing with feelings. Feelings change. I am wondering if tomorrow will bring something better than today. I am tired of being sad. I want to smile, to laugh to feel light and free to enjoy life. I want someone to tell me I am doing a great job. That they're proud of me and admire me for what I have undertaken. I want someone to come alongside of me and carry my cross for a few steps up the steep hill of life. I'd like someone to cry with me, understand my fears, and my insecurities. I am tired of having to hold it all in because no one wants to hear me speak of the pain. Because after all "Grand-parenting is so fun".

Grandparenting With Grace: My Selfishness

Friday, September 14, 2012
So many things have been on  my mind over the past months. I have not written because I have struggled with the selfishness inside of me. I had so many plans for my time. I was entering the empty nest period of life, I could finally pursue my wants, my dreams and make them come true. I was done parenting. No more responsibility for another person's well-being. I was free!! Sigh. Not to be. Yet, that small hand in mine, that "I want my Mama (what my grand-daughter now calls me). The little face snuggling into my neck, the "I love yous" proclaimed throughout the days--what could be of greater value in life. Oh, God I pray I pass this test. Give me the strength I need to parent once again. I fall before you in utter humility and ask, "Why me? Who am I to be chosen for such a privilege as this? To once again mold a little life; to guide an innocent to You. Please be with me all the way, as without you I cannot prevail. Amen."

Grandparenting with Grace: It's been one of those days

Wednesday, June 27, 2012
     Today I tried to mow, the mower broke. I tried to go on a bike ride with my grandchild and my bike trailer tire needs a new tube(?). My van has standing water in it from the rain and smells moldy, and tonight when I wanted to do something with my horses my grandchild wouldn't settle down and go to bed. Some days I just don't understand the unfolding of events. I am so limited in what I can do. Between finances, time, and having a three year-old, there is little of what I had planned on doing actually getting done. Don't get me wrong, I love the child. It is just I see my life as on the downward slide, and limited for time. Oh, don't let me forget the fact I have chipmunks moving into my house. Yes some days it just seems everything goes wrong and life is the pits. Then a little voice says Grandma I love you, and a hug follows and everything is brought back into perspective. Because that is really all that matters.

Grandparenting with Grace: Life is a bit busy right now

Monday, April 23, 2012
I have been so busy trying to finish up my college courses I have had little time to blog. The end is in sight and I will graduate with distinction. I have enjoyed the journey.  However, it has been stressful. For now, I will take the summer off to enjoy my grandchild and catch up on much I am behind on. I expect my summer will be over in a flash with so much catching up to do. I do want to go on for my Masters, and am looking into my options, but time will tell.

Another activity for my summer is OT and PT with my little one who has been diagnosed with a Sensory Processing Disorder. It took awhile to get the doctor to listen to me, but finally we have what we need in place to seek help. Now if the insurance stays static we can get the help the kiddo needs to adapt to the environment and interact appropriately. I am hoping this experience makes life easier for us all.

I hope to blog regularly once I am done with my college classes. Stop back over the summer and learn about SPD with us and the gains made through therapy.  

© Copyright 2012