Saturday, April 10, 2010

A Little Heaven on Earth

There is a wonderful scripture that most church goers have memorized early on in their spiritual journey. It goes something like this: "Give us this day our daily bread, forgive our sins as we forgive the sins of others .... Your Kingdom come on earth as it is in Heaven. Yesterday, my daughter Jael sat on the floor holding Lily. She looked up at me and asked: "If I go to Heaven, when can I come back?" I gazed at her and said: "What do you mean?" Jael looked back and said: "I would like to see Dakota and then come back to be with Lily." (Dakota was our 13 year old golden retriever who died last September). After a brief theological discussion about eternity Jael explained: "I want to tell Dakota that Lily is here now."
"Your Kingdom come on earth as it is in Heaven." Lily is a little bit of Heaven come to earth for our family. She is evidence that God cares about even the smallest details of life. He cares for us to love and be loved. He authors the sunsets, paints the flowers and gives personality to every living creature for our enjoyment.
Lily inspires me to live the scripture... and bring Heaven to earth for those around me.

New Arrivals

Do you remember when you were a kid and it took forever for things to happen? Now I feel like life whizzes by and I barely absorb one memory before the next one is being made. On Thursday night Isabelle, Jael and I drove to the airport with great expectation. Jael (3) fell asleep before we pulled out of the driveway. Isabelle on the other hand sat in the back seat asking the same question over and over: "Are we there yet?" At one point she said: "Mom why does it take so long for things that you want to happen? It was a great question.
Lucky for her, the hour and half ride to the airport was uneventful and we arrived with out delay. Upon pulling into the arrival gates, we all peered out our windows hoping to catch a glimpse of our new arrival. Then at gate 6, we saw her. Grandma opened the door to the backseat of the car and laid the most precious 20 pounds on the girls lap.
Lily lay across their laps amongst giggles, sighs, and other joyful sounds. What a wonderful memory... very worth the wait.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

The Most Important Things!

A few weeks ago, I was faced with a choice. I was offered a puppy? This opportunity to replace our family pet launched me into a much deeper conversation. The question: "What is really important to me?" Our family dog died in September, 2009. He was 13 years old. Dakoda had lived with me for one year before I got married. He moved with me five times. He guarded the crib three different times when our new babies came home from the hospital. When he finally passed away, he was crippled and disorientated. It was one of the strangest losses I had ever experienced. My husband and I decided to wait through the winter to replace our pet. It was mostly a pragmatic decision, since the thought of house breaking a puppy in the Wisconsin snow, didn't sound fun! In March we were offered a puppy, the runt of my friends litter of lab puppies. I remember looking at the picture and thinking this is a great thing. I also remember wondering if I could do it. I am already so busy - managing our family, work, ministry and my volunteer commitments. I guess my heart won, when we accepted the gift and began to plan for her arrival.

It amazes me that just the thought of the new pet brings so much happiness and excitement. The choice to accept Lily was also my choice to accept "new life." Just the idea of a puppy brings joy, freedom and new life to our family. Lily is the name that she comes with, but our family feels it perfectly depicts her story with us. She is our Easter Lily... our sign of hope for the future.