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Sunday, July 27, 2008

Meet Marianne

This is so sad to me but this is a true thing that is happening right now. Doctors are diagnosing and medicating for ODD (Oppositional Defiant Disorder). Read about it, it's awful! If only they knew the Lord and obeyed His ways! I often get caught up with my children's behavior and think how far it is from what I want ( or from what the Lord would want). And they are, we are definitely still working! But I have the Lord on my side! I am obeying His Word and I do have rest and peace. Not all the time but I truly enjoy my children and welcome more! My children love to please me and be with me. I love to include them in my life. Some people can't wait for school to start and they send their children away from them . I just couldn't see doing that. I want my children with me. I want to mold their little minds and train them up for the Lord! I couldn't stand being away from them all that time. They are precious and our time with them is quickly passing by. As my dear friend recently said to me "Children are a deep blessing from the Lord." Anyway, read this sad story. Then buy several copies of To Train Up A Child and pass them out to anyone you see struggling.

Pre School Marianne
Marianne is now 4 years old. Her parents were very excited when she turned four that perhaps that would mean that the terrible twos were finally over. They were not. Her parents are very grateful that the Grandparents are nearby. The grandparents are grateful that Marianne's aunts and uncles live nearby. Marianne's Aunt is grateful that this is her niece, not her daughter. Why? Marianne requires an incredible combination of strength, patience, and endurance.
Marianne begins her day by getting up early and making noise. Her father unfortunately has mentioned how much this bothers him. So she turns on the TV, or if that has been mysteriously disconnected, bangs things around until her parents come out. Breakfast is the first battleground of the day. Marianne does not like what is being served once it is placed in front of her. She seems to be able to sense how hurried her parents are. When they are very rushed, she is more stubborn and might refuse it altogether. It would be a safe bet that she would tell her Mom that the toast tastes like poop. This gets her the first “time out” of the day.
In the mornings she goes to pre-school or goes off with her grandmother or over to her aunts. Otherwise Marianne's mother is unable to do anything. Marianne can not entertain herself for more than a few moments. She likes to spend her time purposefully annoying her mom, at least so it seems. Marianne will demand over and over that she wants something. For example, playdough. She knows it must be made first. So her mom finally gives in and makes it. Marianne plays with it about one minute and says, " Let’s do something" . Her mother reminds her that they are doing something, the very thing that Marianne has been demanding for the last hour. " No, Lets do something else"
So after Marianne's mother screamed so hard she was hoarse when her husband came home, Marianne gets to go out almost every morning. At preschool she is almost perfect, but will not ever do exactly what the teacher wants. Only once has she had a tantrum there. Marianne gets along with the other children as long as she can tell them what to do.
Her grandmother and Aunt all follow the same “time out” plan. This means she goes to a certain room until she calms down. The room is empty now at Marianne's grandmother. Marianne broke the toys, and they were removed. She banged the furniture around and it was removed. What sets Marianne off is not getting to do what Marianne wants. She screams, tells people she hates them, and swings pretty hard for a four old. After a half hour it is usually over, but not always. Marianne will usually tell her mom or Grandmother about these tantrums. The story is always twisted a little. For example, Marianne will tell her Grandmother that her mom locked her in her room because she was watching TV. Her grandmother used to believe these stories, and Marianne could tell the whole story of how she was watching this show, and her mom just came in and dragged her to her room. Now it turns out that Grandma doesn't think much of TV anyways, and so this made a certain amount of sense to her. This led to more than one heated argument between the Grandma and her mom. Of course there was almost no truth to this at all. It took the tables being turned for the Grandma to really believe that her Granddaughter could set up an argument like this. Marianne came home and told her mom that Grandma let her eat four cookies and an ice cream cone for a treat and that she was very full. Marianne's mom doesn't think much of treats, and could see how this might happen and thought she would have to talk to her mom. Finally they both realized what Marianne was doing.
Most of the afternoon with Marianne is spent chasing her around trying to wear her out. It doesn't seem to work, but it is worth a try. When she is at her aunts, she tries to wreck her cousin’s stuff. When is she good? When there are no other cousins around and she has the complete attention of her Aunt or Grandpa.
Marianne loves the bedtime battle. She also loves to go to the Mall. But she never gets to go there or hardly anywhere else. She acts up so badly that her family is very embarrassed. Her mother shops and visits only when Marianne goes to preschool. It is hard to know who is more excited about Marianne going to school next year, her mother or Marianne!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Full and good!

What a beautiful morning! My heart feels full and good this morning! The Lord woke me early (or was that Levi?) and I got extra time with the Lord! I love that! It's 10:00am and our house is clean, little ones have done"school", DJ is mowing, Ashley is practicing on the piano, and I am typing on the computer. This is not normal here! But the Lord is good and can do the impossible! We have just today started a new schedule as we look forward to starting school. So the next 4 weeks are a trial run. The school time on the schedule is now being used for whatever the children want to do. Swimming, reading, piano, violin, mowing, playing, or whatever. Lord willing, we can keep this up and get it perfected before we start school!
I'm reading in Philippians and there were some things that really stood out to me. About being a servant and humbling oneself. Also about labouring = to work hard. Couldn't we even say to work really hard? I believe that Paul is working really hard for the Lord. He is not just coasting through life seeing what he can get. He's for the Lord unto death! He knows that death would be better because then he'll be with Christ! Well, I was convicted because of my pride. I really want to be a good help meet to my husband but I can't do it with my prideful attitude. Jesus made himself a servant and humbled himself and was obedient even to the death of the cross. Yesterday at church one of the young men shared about running over their dog and seeing him suffer. It made him think about God's pain in seeing Jesus suffer and the literal suffering of Jesus. I love it when the Lord makes us remember His death so vividly. I was reminded not that long ago about everything Jesus went through for me when I studied about how people were crucified. If you haven't researched that I highly recommend it. You will never again be able to doubt the LOVE of God! And sinning should become very unappealing to you! So Jesus was obedient even unto the death of the cross. I asked myself, "Who am I to not humble myself?" So keep me accountable! I see a long road in front of me.
I also want to be a hard worker for the Lord. For me, this means to be the best help meet and mother I can be. To deny myself daily. To share Jesus with anyone and everyone! To be obedient to the Bible and the Holy Spirit. I have told the Lord that I will obey His promptings no matter how hard it seems and He has been faithful to take me out of my comfort zone! Do all things without murmurings. Feel free to add abundantly to this list! What is your view of labouring for the Lord? Does Jesus think that you are a good and faithful servant to Him? Don't be caught coasting on this joyride of life!