Monday, April 6, 2015

Chapter 1 - SO MUCH FUN!

There was SO much great stuff in Chapter 1 of For the Love.  I want to share every word with you, I really do.  But I think that will get me in big trouble with the bosses of the publishing company.  So I'm just going to share a bit with you.  The rest you will get to absorb and enjoy when the book comes out in August. 

How often do you rest your precious head on the pillow and say to yourself, "I can't believe I just pulled this day off. It's a bloody miracle."  Last night?  Me too.

While I was reading Chapter 1 of For the Love I kept wondering if my best friend Jen Hatmaker had been spying on me again.  She says, "...we combine the best of everything we see, every woman we admire in every genre, and conclude: I shall be all of that."  Yes Jen Hatmaker, that is EXACTLY what I do!  How did you know?

Good moms cook.  The internet told me so.  My children are lucky if I nuke some steamed vegetables in one of those pre-packaged steam baggy thingys.   Otherwise, we dine on a steady diet of Blue Coast burritos and chicken nuggets.  It’s NOT what I want for my family.  I laugh about it to keep from crying. 

Do you know what happens when I try to cook?  I will tell you.  This morning I decided to prepare a crock pot meal for the girls and Chris Jackson because I have to teach class tonight.  I placed the frozen chicken on the bottom of the crock pot and gave myself a fist pound.  I drained a can of crushed pineapple and poured it over the chicken.  "I'm crushing this meal like Dole crushed these pineapples!" I said out loud, to myself.  I opened up the BBQ sauce and began squirting it over the chicken.  “Why is this squirting and not pouring?” I asked myself.  “Because it has a tiny squirt hole lid instead of a big open top, that’s why,” I answered myself.  “This tiny squirt hole is too slow,” I announced, “Time for action.”  I squeezed that bottle with my big muscles.  “Winning!”  I shouted to my empty kitchen as the BBQ sauce poured out over the chicken at the appropriate emptying speed.  Then I realized why the sauce was pouring instead of squirting.  Because that tiny hole lid had blown off into 40 ounces of BBQ sauce, that’s why!  I spent the next 30 minutes searching for the tiny hole squirt lid in the crock pot.  At one point I wondered, “What would be the worst that could happen if I left that tiny squirt hole lid in there?  Will it totally melt or just get soft?”  But then I decided that was a bad choice so I kept searching. If I smell like BBQ sauce for the next 4 weeks, you now know why.  NAILED IT.

Real women create a welcoming home for their friends and family.  Glossy magazines with children in linen sitting on white couches warm my heart and make me yearn for the same thing for my own family.  When you walk into my home I have to say things like, "You want to sit down? Oh sure! But wait! I need to make sure you aren't sitting where one of the girls wiped a booger this morning.  Sit here, this cushion is clean."  I’m totally serious that this happens to me.

I’m not the best at my job.  I don’t volunteer enough at The Trifecta’s school.  And sometimes I have to say things to my sweet Chris Jackson like, “Please.  Please do not say any more words to me today.  My brain is broken.  Just tell me what you need through interpretative dance or draw me some pictures.  And also please fold these socks.”

So then that wise lady JH hits me with, "The only thing worse than this unattainable standard is the guilt that follows when perfection proves impossible."

Yes. Yes, that guilt happens to me.  Has it happened to you?    Does this sound familiar?  I know it does.  I am certain I’m not the only one trying to live this crazy life.

Jen Hatmaker says, "We need to quit trying to be awesome and instead be wise.”  I’m going to say her words one more time.  “We need to quit trying to be awesome and instead be wise.”  This really punched me in the gut.  Because I totally want to be awesome.  At everything.  All the time. But being wise would be REALLY
Because you know what happens when we figure out how to be wise?  JH states, "Wise women know what to hold onto and what to release, and how to walk confidently in their choices - no regrets, no apologies, no guilt."
Doesn't that just sound WONDERFUL?  Releasing what stresses us out.  Walking with confidence in the decisions we make for ourselves and the people we love instead of feeling like we let everyone down, all the time.  Being the best for the people that matter instead of giving our best to everyone EXCEPT those who love us the most. 

How are we going to do this, Friends?  We are going to listen to Jen Hatmaker, that’s what we’re going to do!   She reminds us, “When you can’t trust your own discernment, you can certainly trust His.  God has no agenda other than your highest good in His kingdom.”

I’m going to start asking God to help me stop trying to be awesome.  I am going to ask Him to teach me how to be wise instead.

And then I’m going to read Chapter 2.

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