Joy Journey.

My Pastor's Wife threw out a question on Facebook the other day.
She asked:  "What's your word for this new year?"

What word do I want to "claim" - for lack of a better word - that I want be a reflection of me for these next 365 days?
Kind of a heavy question...But a good one to ponder.
Indeed we do....
I do know this:
I want to be a more intentional Mama.
I want to be a more deeply invested wife.
I want to be healthy - spiritually, physically, emotionally.
I want to be more of a prayer warrior, and I want to go deeper in my walk with the Lord.
I want to take seriously - and enjoy this journey of Homeschooling my four kids
I want to be wholly here - so that I can be witness to the Holy Here that is always all around me.
I want to be the best version of me wherever I am - at work, at home, at church - wherever.
I want to live the best life that God has written for me.
Three Hoolie Loves.
Mostly, - through it all - wherever I am, I want to "be all there." ~ Elisabeth Elliott
And I want to do it all with JOY.

Thomas Acquinas once said:  "No man can live without Joy," and this is one of my most favorite quotes in the world.  It's a good one to remember in the throes of Motherhood.  It's good to remember when the future looks a little scary....or when the "right now" feels unsure.

So, that's my main word for this year, I think...
I'm claiming Joy.
Her stash.
And I think, too,...... it's good to have goals; and it's fun to have bucket lists.
Even if this is a season of very little "me" time - which just so happens to be the one I'm livin' in.

Right now, my "me time" consists of any time before 7:00 in the morning, and that's pretty much it.
My evenings are full, so my very early mornings are my own.
Time in the Word.  Time to pray.  Time to write.  Time to read.  Time to exercise.  Time to be still.
These are the things that fill me.
These are the things I do during solitude.
These are the simple Joys that bring me life.
And the rest of the day - for this short little season - is filled with being a Mama and a wife in these four walls and a waitress and Director of Hospitality outside of them.  And I want Joy in all of this, as well. Maybe someday I'll go back to school to be a midwife.  Maybe someday I'll have my own little creative business or outlet of my own where I can be my own boss and make my own hours.  But, this is not that season.  This is the season where most of my hours are not my own - they are full and they are rich - but they are not the life of the footloose and fancy free.  Four sweet babies, homeschooling, housekeeping, laundry, meals, church, life, being a wife - wash, rinse, and repeat....daily bringing order out of chaos, breaking up sibling tiffs, wiping bums, stepping on legos, potty training, learning letters, grocery shopping, training up little souls, teaching boys to be men and little girls to be ladies, making space in this tiny house....and making space to connect with my man who lives this crazy life right along beside me.

The life of the not so glamorous.
Repeating....LOUDLY...every word he says.  "Reading" for herself.
But the life of the Holy ordinary.
A good season where the days are long, but the years are fleeting.
And I don't want to miss out because I'm too busy focusing on something else.

And so we dance that delicate spin of balance.
Filling up so that I can pour myself out day after day after day.
Throwing myself into the Life that is mine in the here and the now...and yet not losing the "me" that that still exists outside this world of motherhood.
My mantra.
So, I like fresh starts and new beginnings.
I like sitting down and writing out my goals...assessing how I spend my days.
I like hashing out dreams and plans with Kev and seeing what needs to come off of our plates and what can also be added.

I like being focused.
I like asking the questions.
And I like making the lists.
Wherever "her boys" are...there is this girl...with her bedhead.
I've got some goals.
And my ever present bucket list.

Included on this year's:  Run another half marathon.  Or maybe a full.  Save enough money to rip up our carpets.  Pay off our debt.  Potty train London without destroying said carpets.  Teach the boys to do their own laundry.  Focus on their character over curriculum.  Get up before the sun each morning. Give the Lord the firstfruits of my day.  Eat a little more clean.  Get back into the rhythm of consistent exercise and soul care...
Legos.  My life is Legos.  Everywhere.
Judge less.
Love deep.
Quit comparing.
Stoop lower.
Listen more.
Truly see.
Swallow pride.
Savor the Simple....

I want to read more.  I want to write more.  And I want to shoot a deer.
Simple joys.

But I want to do it all being fully present.  And aware.
Counting the joys.  Naming the gifts.  Recording the answered prayers.
School this year.  Countries and cultures.  And Geography.  I'm horrid with Geography.
And so we begin again on this silly, simple little joy journey that we started years ago...
...just picking up right where we left off...

Because, "counting the ways that He loves - this is what multiplies the Joy." ~ Ann Voskamp
And "the life that counts blessings discovers it's yielding more than it seems." ~ Ann Voskamp

Maybe it helps us to see a little better this Holy Ordinary...
New Year.  New Days.  Because His mercies are new every morning.
Oh - how He loves us!

#5836 ~ Waking early - up before the sun...and my Loves.
5837 ~ Wishing I'd gotten up earlier - soul care, soul food, Jesus and coffee.
5838 ~ Thirsting for More...Claiming the Joy.
5839 ~  Perspective that shifts after time in the Word.
5840 ~ Freedom to read, to pray, to openly confess my love for You.
5841 ~ Kevin Scott...and growing deeper.
5842 ~ Four sweet souls - breathing deep in sleep.
5843 ~ This home.  This life.  These days.
5844 ~ A Monday to be nowhere...but Here.
5845 ~ Reminders to be fully present - to be wholly Here.
5846 ~ Nights before the diet...

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