My summer routine pretty much consists of driving 3 kids to various activities from 9 am to 5 pm. I know! You are probably thinking that it's a shame our poor children are so busy with little time to enjoy summer. You are probably having an urge to give me the address for some of those better mommy blogs where they write about their precious ones running through the sprinklers or playing with chalk or making crafts. Speaking of crafts, you probably want to suggest I do some with my four year old as we talk about Bible stories. Trust me, she did some two weeks ago with her wonderful grandmother. Here is a photo of sweet Sarah when I picked her up from what we call "Camp McKinney" which is actually a week with Blake's parents. She couldn't wait to show me the paper mache' pig she made!
I've pinned about a million craft ideas on Pinterest, but here are the ones she did with Grammy last week so I'm thinking she's crafted out for awhile anyway. Aren't they adorable?!
And by the way, she even cooked with Grammy AND ran through their sprinklers! See, my kids really are having a perfectly lovely summer!
I did recently get super creative with breakfast...notice the frozen waffle and paper plate.
As much as I try, I'm not that kind of mom usually, and we aren't that kind of family. I'm okay with it, really! It's how we thrive honestly. I mean, seriously...this crazy family will choose the vacation to a crazy big city over a leisurely mountain cabin any day. I'll spare you all the pictures of our recent trip to Washington DC. Even when we are in nature, my husband and sons prefer to live on the edge!
Suffice it to say that we really do enjoy being busy.
Please don't judge us! It's not that we don't talk about Bible stories or appreciate some quiet time. We really do! It's just that we find ourselves in the high school, middle school, and kindergarten stages all at the same time. All three of our kids are active because they want to be. They each have their own activities, so we have some really great opportunities to meet other families in our community. We have dinner together around the table almost every night. During the school year we have breakfast together every school day and morning devotions.
But one of my favorite things about all the busyness is that we have captive moments in the car to talk about Jesus. We also try to spend the beginning parts of our drive praying for others. We pray for teachers, coaches, church staff, neighbors, even strangers in ambulances as they rush by. When several of us are waiting in the car for a sibling to finish summer school, voice lessons, drum lessons, ballet, gymnastics, church orchestra, or pool time we have the best conversations about how we see God at work in the world! (Here we are waiting for Justin to finish a voice lesson. You'd be surprised how much you can learn about God's love for us as you see hints of redemption even in Disney stories on the ipad!)
Because we are in the car a lot, we play several car games. One of our favorites is "I Spy".
A funny thing happened this week as we pulled out of the garage. I reminded Sarah that we needed to pray for Coach Jana as we headed to gymnastics. Sarah volunteered to go first and started, "I spy with my little eye..." before we both started to laugh! Sometimes we don't think before we speak. Sometimes we just "phone in" our prayers. We did pray for Coach Jana and talk about how we have to take that seriously. Sarah honestly just said what came very naturally to her in the car...she wasn't trying to be funny, but I was reminded by Sarah that prayer really is an invitation from God to spy Him!
I believe that He is always at work, but when I'm consciously praying about something or someone I'm compelled to watch for an answer. Honestly, it's sometimes easy to go for hours in the day without acknowledging His presence or speaking to Him. I know i should be praying, but I just get busy. I don't know if my prayers change God's mind necessarily, but I do know that prayer changes me. It focuses me. It reminds me that He is doing something so big that I'd hate to miss it! It's an invitation to play "I SPY GOD!"
Do you spy God at work in your busyness. Prayer is the best way to make yourself spy God! If you are talking with Him, asking Him to reveal Himself, then looking hard for Him, you will spy Him! God spoke to the rebellious nation of Israel through the prophet Jeremiah and even said, "You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you..." (Jeremiah 29:13-14a)
My challenge to you, to myself too, is to play "I spy" with God! Talk to Him! Ask Him to reveal Himself to you in new and surprising ways. Beg Him to move in your life and your circumstances. Plead with Him to move in your friends' lives. Even tell Him and others where you've "spied" Him lately! I'll just bet that when you pray about some things and then watch for His answers, you'll spy Him in all sorts of places!
This week I'm hoping to spy Him at the gym!
I'm betting He'll turn me upside down in the process! (Sorry, I couldn't resist!)