Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Surrender Like a Child

It's funny to me, the way our life shifted a few years ago, and how we now feel completely at home, yet still thoroughly, utterly changed.

I don't know, my mind wants to believe that as soon as we've really come "home", life feels normal.

It does. But it doesn't.

Maybe that's the thing about surrender, that once you start, once you really commit, you know too much to believe it's over.

Surrender is never really done.

And the gratitude I feel every day that God spoke clearly and gave us the faith to respond is endless. I don't ever want to forget it wasn't always this way. I don't want to fall back into my old ways of believing my goal in life is to live a life of comfort, stability, security, and ease.

This wonky life keeps proving it means business. Almost everything changed, and we are no exception.

I'm equal parts intrigued and really nervous to see what happens next.

But I know it'll be good, even if we have to cock our heads sharply to the side to see it that way.

I found this school project of Ruby's early this school year.
It wrecked me, in good ways and bad ones. It leveled my emotions.

I wrote all about Letting Go, then the next year, I wrote all about Going.
Sometimes I wrote about what it meant for kids (here and here.)
There were days I was gripped in fear and regret.

But we did this. We walked where we were sent, believing our kids were called along with us, and we'd all be okay.

Ruby is our least-squeaky wheel, and we take note of that. Cory and I area always having mini meetings where we probe the depths of that smart little brain and that good, good heart. She used to wear her heart on her sleeve, but not as much anymore.

She's an observer. A quiet processor.

All of that to say, when I read her words and stared at her illustrations, in unlocked so much in me. For all of our attempts to know what each of them was feeling, it didn't fully come out until she was sitting at her little school, teaching the whole world about what it means to surrender, how badly it can hurt.

It's hard to be new. It's even harder when you're shy.
It hurts when most of your classmates speak Spanish to each other and you're the one feeling left out. (It hurts even more when you envy their long, straight hair SO MUCH. < We've made big strides on this one.)

But oh, the incomparable goodness we find when we do it anyway.

I should have just let Ruby write all of my series for me, because she nailed it.
She is my total hero.


So, so, so, so, so, so much.

I don't want to ever sell my kids short. Their mission is just as important as mine. God has big plans for their lives. 

They can do hard things, too.


  1. There is something about that Ruby gal. She seems so strong and mature and smart. And passionate and wild and free too. You must be so proud! Thanks for sharing her beautiful story.

  2. Why all the fuss about DNA? Rubs couldn't be more my granddaughter even if tried. I love that little gal. She will make a big splash in our world, why she already is!! I always knew she had the courage of a lion and a heart of an angel. She made my heart dance today!!

  3. It took me awhile to figure it out, but now I wholeheartedly agree that our kids are part of our ministry too. They live out the easy, fun and hard times with us, and it grows them in the best possible ways. We've have great conversations after they've been hurt about loving the unlovely. I love Ruby's heart so so so so much!

  4. I know they can do hard things too, but days like today are the worst for questioning it. as I'm escorting one of my 4th grader's classmates to the principle's office, I wonder; what if he deals with his anger the only way he knows how, and retaliates on my kiddo? And so, yet again I'm faced with trusting the One who is Mighty, not because He will guarentee nothing bad will happen, He doesn't promise that, but because He is Faithful no matter what and worthy of my trust.

  5. my kids made a school transition last year. and they had a rough time, but they didn't have such eloquent words to express themselves. this year i see how the change helped them to grow and stretch. i'm using them for inspiration in my life right now. to do the hard, unimaginable things. to see where going and growing leaves big people in a year.

  6. That girl of yours! I've always admired her sassy good looks and her spirit that just shines in every picture. But these WORDS! My, but that girl is already word crafting, like her mama. Love, love, love!

  7. Love this! Hey Shannon, I just realized you are a fan of Shinnola watches? My husband bought me one for Christmas this year and I love it. I love the fact that it was made in Michigan (where my dad went to college) and I love that it is not only American made but high quality and that perhaps we can help that neck of the woods in some small way.

  8. I sure wish that Ruby was my neighbor! She is blooming where God has planted her and we can all gain wisdom from that sweet, sensitive girl full of love! And , I agree with your Mamma...Ruby will make a big splash in the world one day..she has already started!

  9. I love her sweet outlook on life... what a blessing! Just today I found myself in a meeting with the head of the counseling department at my local high school, asking about ways that I can get involved and bless the kiddos in our neighborhood... a meeting prompted by a post you wrote a while back about simple ways to begin getting involved in the community:)

    As always, thanks for sharing... I am always so blessed by your words:)

  10. "Courage of a lion and a heart of an angel" I agree, and it made my heart glad! Lovely person she is. Lots of lessons here.

  11. Kids CAN do hard things! My husband and I are adopting two little girls who just moved in with us after almost 4 years in foster care. Thankfully, they were in only one home during that time, but their little hearts can't understand why they aren't able to stay with their foster mom. They miss her and their old schools, but in spite of all this they bravely go to their new schools, make new friends and amaze us by their strength. I need to remember to tell them how in awe of their courage we are.

  12. The way you turn a phrase just crushes me. And then lifts me up. Like this one: "My husband wore the skin of Jesus and loved me like a parted sea, a flaming tree, an infant King on a bed of hay. Cory became a miracle through our darkest days, lowering me down through the roof to be healed, turning muddy water into wine." When are you releasing a book?

  13. Oh, this has encouraged me SO much. We are planning a BIG move this summer (from the UK to Texas) and my main concern has been for my 10-year-old daughter, such a sweet sensitive soul. She's had lots of change and loss in her life but we keeping remembering that He works all things for our/her good.
    "I don't want to ever sell my kids short. Their mission is just as important as mine. God has big plans for their lives." - Ditto, ditto, ditto that. Your words and heart are just brilliant - Thank You so much for sharing!

  14. Ah!!! This is so precious. It's amazing what they quietly process (even at school!!).