Thursday, January 30, 2014

Christ the Rock

Well, I thought we were on the verge of getting out of "zombie" mode, but this week Lu decided that she's not ready to fall asleep until midnight.  Brian, Mr. Night Owl, has been fighting a nasty cold so he's gone to bed early each night, leaving me up with a spunky, ready-to-party Lucy-Lu.

There's a pesky tooth struggling to come through her bottom gum - I think that's the culprit to our sleeplessness.  Despite her discomfort, I'm so thankful for her happiness.  She is such a contented baby.

Nevertheless, I decided that THIS is the week I was going to get up early to spend time in the Word and prayer each morning.  That time to reorient my heart and mind before the throne of grace is what I've missed more than anything since Lucy was born last May.  Girltalk recently wrote a great post answering this question How do you get up early when your kids are up all night?  Yes, those suggestions are excellent and have helped sustain me these last 8 months, but there's nothing as sweet as meeting with Jesus in those early morning hours, coffee in hand.

Our church's women's bible study has enjoyed Nancy Guthrie's Seeing Jesus in the Old Testament studies.  Because there hasn't been a women's bible study at church yet this year, I decided to order Nancy's The Lamb of God: Seeing Jesus in Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers & Deuteronomy and study it myself.  Today I was immensely encouraged and just had to share what I read.

I love it when I have the "ah-ha" moments when studying God's Word.

The chapter I studied this morning was "Salvation & Provision" from Exodus 13-17.  

The Israelites continued to wander in the desert, quarreling with Moses (17:2), and Moses cried out to God asking Him for advice, for the people were ready to stone him (17:4-5).  God said, "Behold, I will stand before you there on the rock at Horeb, and you shall strike the rock, and water shall come out of it, and the people will drink," (17:6) (emphasis mine).

Nancy Guthrie helps us see how opposite this is: God is standing before Moses.  NOT Moses standing before God.  Here, Moses is the judge. God identifies himself not as judge, but as the rock.  He instructs Moses to strike the rock.  "He [God] will stand in the place of the accused, identifying himself with the rock, and he will bear the judgment the people deserved for their rebellion.  Instead of receiving punishment, they will be flooded with the mercy of a gushing stream of water flowing from the rock," (pg. 107).

We see, as Paul saw, that God (in the person of Jesus Christ) stood on the Rock and was struck with God's just rod of punishment for a guilty people:
For I do not want you to be unaware, brothers, that our fathers were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, and all ate the same spiritual food, and all drank the same spiritual drink.  For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ.
I Corinthians 10:1-4

So long ago, using a rock & steam of water, God demonstrated to His people His plan for salvation: strike Christ for sinful rebellion while saving guilty sinners like us.  Wow.

Nancy writes, "Are you seeing that the physical salvation of the Israelites at the Red Sea  provides a picture for us of the spiritual salvation available to all who trust in Christ?" (pg. 108).

So, if we're trusting in Christ the Rock, what is our responsibility?  "Drink. Drink. Drink the living water that flows from Christ alone. Believe in him; enter into a trusting, ongoing relationship with him in which he daily fills you with his own overflowing life and joy," (pgs 107-108).

Today I am drinking deeply.
This is the sweet gospel.
Thank you, Jesus.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Lucy is 8 months old!

Lucy Jane is 8 months old today! As I reflect on her life, I am overwhelmed with gratitude and thankfulness.  I know all things in life are true gifts from God, but every single time I look into her lovely face, I am reminded of God's goodness, mercy and love in not only sparing her life, but in causing her to thrive.

At her 6 month check up a month ago, she weighed 18 pounds, 4 ounces (73rd percentile on the normal charts!).  Again, so thankful.

Lucy is spunky, fun, and a joy to be around.  I love her squeals of delight when we dance in the living room and her shrieks of happiness whenever she sees her brother.  Brian and I find ourselves laughing at her so much - she shouts for only a second if she's in a position she doesn't like; she very forcefully pushes her bottles away when she's had enough; and she grunts "Bah" when she hasn't been looked at for a few if we've forgotten she was there!  I am thankful to the LORD for her very fun, magnetic personality.

Lucy has always been very a mover and a shaker.  About 3 weeks ago, she began rolling over like crazy.  I'm thankful for a video monitor because she rolls over in her crib, even when swaddled, and needs to be repositioned often.

She loves sweet potatoes!  Shortly after Christmas we began with avocados and rice cereal, neither of which she is a fan of.  Today was the first day she ate an entire frozen cube of food.  I'm thankful for the progress!  No, she doesn't have teeth yet.

While I was on bedrest last May, a friend (also the mom of a preemie) sent me an online poster-thingy via FB that said, "I'm the mom of a preemie.  What's your superpower?"  I didn't understand, at all, the true meaning of that at the time, but now I do...somewhat.  Having Lucy eight weeks early nearly did me in.  It's only been in the last couple of weeks that I've finally felt like a normal human being.  Those early months of feeding her every 3 hours around the clock were incredibly difficult.  Since last week, she's been going to sleep at 7:30 pm, enjoys a dream-feed at 11 pm, and sleeps until 7:30 am.  It's simply glorious.  My eyes are still red and the black circles remain, but I have energy!  

With this energy I am planning to blog again, Tweet, rise early to spend time with Jesus, and do "school" more regularly with Aidan.  I'm thankful to be out of the survival mode.  Today I started my first online course through Morningside.  It is the first of three classes to obtain my TAG endorsement.  Yes, I still enjoy teaching 7-8th grade TAG for two hours/week.

Thank you to those of you who have continued to pray for us on this journey with Lucy!  Who could have imagined how amazing the outcome would be!?

And we can't forget about my favorite boy.  Aidan is doing so well too.  He prides himself in the ability to make his sister laugh, enjoys his tumbling and music classes, loves memorizing Bible verses and catechism questions, and is a HUGE ball of energy.  Both he and I are anxiously awaiting spring's arrival so he can burn energy off outside.  He also enjoys playing games (Cheery-O, Dominoes, Old Maid, etc.) and putting puzzles together.

Here is my boy on one of our recent dates:
Love him.