Friday, October 26, 2012

Time to Celebrate!

We had a mini celebration in our house tonight! 

It was originally planned to celebrate Lydia passing her wheat challenge.

Plans had to change. She didn't pass the challenge, and we also found out about two new allergies to garlic and beef. Yes- beef, as in hamburgers and steak and chili and spaghetti sauce.

I was bummed. Really bummed. Party cancelled. But then the pity party cleared, and I realized we had plenty to celebrate. So- instead of wheat, we celebrated our amazingly blessed life. 

We celebrated living in America. I start each day knowing that I can provide my kids with clean sheets, clean water, healthy food, education, a home, and a whole bunch of other frivolousness that we often confuse with "needs". Lydia has nine different food allergies, and yet I still have an abundance of safe, healthy food to buy for her. 

Yep, lots to smile about!

She was wondering why we were staring at the cake instead of eating it. 

Wheat free, dairy free, nut free, soy free, artificial dye free,  and very, very yummy. Even ultra wheat-free critic mama thought it was good. Namaste chocolate cake mix- allergy friendly, not cheap. 
Prayers for our little girl are always welcome. Her allergies are getting worse, not better- and it can be very frustrating. Bill and I are constantly on alert to protect her. We skip eating out altogether unless we pack her meal separately. Movie theaters feel like death traps with all the peanut M &Ms and buttered popcorn. Meal planning is- well, a challenge. Most of her allergies cause severe rashes, but a few of them do try to kill her. Several weeks ago she took a sip of cow's milk from a cup that somehow made it past my paranoid, watchful eyes, and she reacted immediately. Hives popped up over her face and torso, and by the time I ran her up the steps to shower off her skin, her lips and tongue were swelling. We had to use her epi pens and call 911. Food allergies are no joke. I remind myself every time I start to drown in self pity that I am a child of the Almighty, and she's in His care. I trust Him implicitly.  I also think of the orphans in Haiti and Africa who would look at our life and think we live like royalty.  And that's just looking at material things. There's the story of the poor man who sat at the table with his bread and water, and gave thanks saying, "All this, AND Jesus?!"

What if I woke up tomorrow and all I had left was what I gave thanks for today?

Self pity, go away. Cake tastes way better.

Friday, October 5, 2012

In the Meantime...

I think that great pain in life is not always that of our own, but the inability to remove it from those we love. 

To know that someone is hurting, and words feel empty, and there is nothing to do but pray. And even that feels inadequate at times. Then I'm led back to that same old question I've been asking over and over and over again. Why all the hurt and pain in this world with an all powerful, all loving God? Why do toddlers get raped, and children get beaten, and women hold dying babies? Why do wars rage, and nations starve? I already know the answer. That God is not the source of evil, and one day He will set all things right. But in the meantime....all this pain....

I came across this blog post today. 

"Why is there all this loveliness?"

And I realized, I've been asking the wrong question.

Instead of asking, "Why all the evil, when there is a God?"

The question  I should really ask, "If there is no God, why is there so much good?"

Evil wants us to think that God doesn't care. That He doesn't see silent tears in the middle of the night, that He doesn't feel our sorrow and loss. The truth is that He holds us with nail scarred hands. The truth is that we never walk alone. 

There is still beauty in the midst of pain because there IS A God. A beautiful, loving, compassionate God. And one day, He will set all things right. And in the meantime...all this good...

Romans 1:19-21

For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made.
So they are without excuse.
For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him