Every little girl can be Cinderella…..

I spent the day with my 7 year old today.  We left late this morning, grabbed some lunch and headed to the movie theater to see the new “Cinderella” movie.  I have LOVED the story of Cinderella since I was a little girl, I think all little girls at one time want to be Cinderella!

Recently we have been running into some new avenues with parenting that we didn’t expect for a while.  “CRUSHES!”  Why does my belly feel funny when that boy is around?  Why are we saving kisses for marriage? Why should I not hug a boy?    These questions are so hard for me to answer in 9 year old language!  It is really hard for me to explain certain things to a child who isn’t old enough to know the big picture yet, but still becoming curious about God’s design.  In my mind since my oldest was born I’ve pictured her growing up and finding a Godly man and having the perfect fairy tale marriage…then I say to myself, “Life isn’t a fairy tale.”

I heard this all the time growing up!  “Life isn’t a fairy tale!”  “Marriage isn’t a fairy tale!” “Marriage is hard work!” But I realized today while watching “Cinderella” that- that is EXACTLY what my girls should be looking for and nothing less!!  Why not teach them that their own love story can really be exactly like Cinderella?

Even in a fairy tale, there is hurt, there is loss, there is struggle!  Cinderella lost both her parents and was left to be a servant in her own home!  She wasn’t allowed time for mourning, she still was forced to get up every day and go to work!  She was isolated, lonely, and treated like dirt!  But still– in the midst of the storm she found joy!  She marveled at God’s creation, the gardens, the animals, the birds of the air.  She didn’t wallow in her sorrow of how miserable her life was, but she was joyful always, and made the best of her situation.  She wasn’t a fan of her “boss” or step-mom but she still treated her with respect because she was her superior.  She made promises to both her parents and she was vigilant in keeping her word to them.

Each meeting she had with the prince, you could see by his look how much he loved her.  It showed in his actions towards her and his words that he chose.  He only touched her a twice before they were married.  While they were dancing his touch was respectful, and appropriate for dance.  It was obvious that he was being gentle with her, and treated her like she was delicate.  The next time he touched her was to hold her hand after he had asked her to marry him.  He did not kiss her till they were married.  He did not speak any ill word to her, but only words to encourage her, lift her up, build her up, and make her feel how loved she is, he accepted her for who she was and didn’t need her to be someone else for him to love her.

The Prince was being pushed to marry someone he did not love.  Someone he knew was not God’s best for him.  She was beautiful but there was something not quite right about it.  His father was dying and most people want to be married and have their parents present for their weddings but The Prince knew that it wasn’t right.  He chose to wait for God’s best and not go off and choose just anyone because he was tired of waiting for her.  They searched the entire kingdom for the girl whose foot was the exact size to fit that slipper perfectly.  He could have picked someone who was close to fitting it, or whose foot fit but was really tight….but he waited…And soon he found his princess and the wait was completely worth it.

God has a spouse out there for my girls.  The perfect husband for them!  A prince who will carry around a glass slipper and wait for God to bring them together!  God’s best, is out there for them and if they guard their hearts from all the other glass slippers that don’t fit correctly, and avoid giving away pieces of their hearts to others, one day- they will have a glass slipper of their own.  One day, they will have God’s best!!

My girls CAN have a Happily Ever After!  Yes of course marriage isn’t easy, but when two people know that they were made specifically for one another, and that they waited patiently for one another, then no one else will ever do!  They can work through the most difficult of circumstances, they can have a fairy tale romance.

My husband is completely without a doubt my best friend, my biggest fan, my greatest love, and God’s best for me.  Of course we have disagreements and get angry with one another but WILL live happily ever after because NO ONE ELSE will ever be able to fill my glass slippers for him, or me.  No other glass slipper given to me by anyone else will ever fit perfectly, or as comfortably as the one he has given me.  HE is my prince charming, and God gave me a real life fairy tale.

No little girl should ever give up their dream to be Cinderella!  Every girl is a princess of God and if she keeps her Joy, if she keeps her promises to the Lord, if she keeps her standards high according to God’s word–I truly believe that having a fairy tale romance can be realistic.  One day she will find her Prince!

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We can’t escape God…

me and grandma 2

It has been a few weeks now since my Great-Grandma passed, yet I can’t stop thinking about her in my daily thoughts; even more now than when she was here on earth!  The silence throughout facebook, is heartbreaking.  Though my family is far away I can hear them crying and mourning through the many posts of her photos and videos of her singing!  Our family group page was quiet till last week; just stillness. We all miss her!

In our home, there is a little less quiet.  Our lives have gone on, homeschooling must still happen, chores are being complete, business is being done, and there are seven kids to feed three times a day.  Busyness has stolen my time for mourning, so in the wee hours of the night, I sit here tapping the keys of my laptop, spilling it out to the world because I haven’t had time to stop and reflect about it during the day.

I think about her house, sitting there empty after all these years and I can’t get past it!  It was hers for so long the thought of it not being a place of refuge, a meeting place, a place of worship, a home to my aunts and uncles, is unbearable.  Will I ever get to see so many of my family members together in one place ever again, like I would, being at her house?

My Grandma, like I said before, had a way of making everything beautiful because of her love for Christ.  She showed me something very profound in her last days.  When our family went to visit her three weeks before she passed, she had dementia and couldn’t see very well.  I sat next to her and held her hand.  She was 98 years old, weak and tired, but had a stronger grip than that of a grown healthy adult male!!  It was as if she wanted to show us how much she loved us through how hard she squeezed our hand!  Some of the conversations we had went something like this:

Grandma, “How old are you now?”

ME, “Grandma, I am 32 years old!”

Grandma, “wow, you are a BIG baby now aren’t you!”  “I think I am 94, but I’m not sure, isn’t that awful?”

Me, “awe, no Grandma, that isn’t awful!”

Grandma, “Who are you honey?”
Me, “Grandma it’s (my name), I’m Debbie’s daughter!”
Grandma, “OH, honey do you remember when you were a little girl at my house and you told me, “grandma when I grow up I want to be a Christian,” do you remember that?”

She would have moments of clarity, then moments of confusion.  But one thing I noticed was that not ONCE did she forgot who Jesus was!  There was not one time she forgot what he did for her, and what his word said, how to be a Christian!  She may not have remembered her age, or who I was, or that I was not a baby anymore, but she remembered who her Heavenly Father was at all times.  She remembered every word to every Hymn, and scripture, and what The Lord has done for her!

As a created being, we were made to crave a relationship with The Lord!  We were created to worship God!  Without him we are never whole, we have a void that can never be filled with earthly things.  No matter how much our spouse or children love us, we will always feel empty inside unless we allow God to fill that missing piece.  A telephone that was created to ring, doesn’t fulfill its calling if it never rings; just as we won’t fulfill our calling if we don’t make Jesus Lord of our life.  My Grandma knew this!  She knew it was true for her own life, as well as ours!

In one of my bible classes I took at Liberty a few years ago, I was taught that once you truly experience the presence of Jesus in your life – you will never be able to turn from Him!  I’ve taken that statement and I have studied it by putting it beside some of my family who I was told walked away from God, some of my friends, whom I witnessed walk away from God, and even a time in my life, when I was younger, when I walked away from God.  I came to the conclusion that either none of us ever REALLY experienced the true presence of the Lord like we thought we did, OR none of us ever REALLY could get away from Him like we wanted too!  For myself, I never got away from him.  Sometimes it is easier in life to run away, ignore God, and live the life you want to live apart from him.  Living for God isn’t easy!  But you will never be complete and whole until you do!

When we were visiting my grandma I saw this statement in a new light.  Every conversation she had was about Jesus, every song was about Jesus, every goodbye was I’ll see you at the pearly gates!  Even dementia, couldn’t take my grandma away from the knowledge of the truth!  My grandma was so passionate about bringing the word of God to others, even in those last few weeks of her life, that you would often find her having a family member kneel beside her bed so she could pray with them!  Now that is a woman after God’s own heart!

I desperately want to be like her!  I want my children to know the Lord because of my love for him!  I want to be their rock!  I want to be so full of the joy of the Lord that I am leading others to Christ till the day I die!  I want my passion for God to be so overwhelming that people can’t even be with me without feeling the presence of God.  When you say my name, I want my children to think “my mom loved the Lord” just like I do when I think of her!  I want to pass down her legacy!

It has been tough for me watching my family being still these last few weeks- and not be close enough to visit them.  I know it is because they are still mourning, and some feel down and are trying to figure out life without her here.  I’m the opposite, I want to tell the world about her- that is how I celebrate her life!  I wish I could have remembered every word she said to me those last few days I saw her!  There was just so much said, and so many moments I wish I could have frozen forever!

I know that when it comes time for me to enter the kingdom of Heaven, she will be the first face I see waiting on me at the gates!

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