Nagging toddlers and persistent widows

Having previously mentioned that I found our church festival challenging, I’ve been thinking, and prompted by a statement by Chris that he’s been pestering our daddy God like our three year old, found I needed to write.

I didn’t just find the festival difficult, life can be quite difficult I find with a toddler (as well as wonderful) Every parent in the world probably agrees. However, recently it has been specifically so. Our toddler has started repeating himself whenever he wants something, especially if we have told him he cannot have it. It feels like a form of torture.

One example is, I DO want it, I DO want it, I NEED it, I NEED it, I NEED it, I NEED it, I NEED it, I NEED it, I WANT IT, I WANT IT, I WANT IT, I WANT IT, I WANT IT, I WANT IT, I WANT IT… I need the television on mummy, I need the television on mummy, I need the television on mummy, I need icecream, I need icecream, I need icecream, I need icecream, I need icecream, “not for breakfast, we don’t have icecream for breakfast” but I NEEEED it, I need it, I need it, I need it, I need carry, I need carry, I need carry, I need carry, I need carry, I need carry, I need carry, I need carry, I need carry….play with me, play with me, play with me, play with me,play with me, play with me…this is an extremely shortened, restricted version of it and only one example of his persistence, it is a very effective technique for wearing someone down. He is persistent and tenacious and although annoying and very difficult for us, we feel this is probably actually a gift, not a burden. A couple of our friends have also said this. My problem is actually responding calmly rather than blowing up and also sticking to my guns when required!

Chris said the other day that it reminds him of the parable of the persistent widow, this is the ESV (English Standard Version) of Luke 18:1-8:

And he told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart.  He said, “In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor respected man.  And there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying, ‘Give me justice against my adversary.’  For a while he refused, but afterward he said to himself, ‘Though I neither fear God nor respect man,  yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will give her justice, so that she will not beat me down by her continual coming.’”  And the Lord said, “Hear what the unrighteous judge says.  And will not God give justice to his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? I tell you, he will give justice to them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?”

So! there is a lesson in there with our nagging, annoying toddler who is also wonderfully comical and funny and serious, standing there with his hands on his hips telling me to stop talking or to get off my computer,or demanding another story or food or milk or attention or to play with him.

God asks us to pray persistently, to cry out to him, to keep going, to pester him! As Heidi Baker said in her talk on Sunday at our Catalyst festival, God loves to play with his kids. And I can learn a lot through our challenging toddler. A lot more than I have written here!

What would happen if we really prayed? and prayed? and prayed? and prayed? what would happen if we spent quality time with God, got to know Him more, if we LOVED spending time with Him. This is my aim for this year again.

“Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37.4)

He also changes the desires of our hearts… Oh Lord, I delight in you, I love you, thank you for everything, thank you for the fact that Jesus lived the life we cannot live, died the death we deserve and rose again from the dead to give us back our relationship with God and to give us eternal life. Thank you that with you death is defeated and we rise with you into the lives we should have had originally and come to know you, our maker, our reason for living, our everything.

Finally, one of my favourite parts of the bible, the beginning of John, (John 1:1-5 ESV) I find it really dramatic, I can almost see the words going up on a screen at the start of an epic adventure film:

In the beginning was the Word,

and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 

He was in the beginning with God. 

All things were made through him,

and without him was not any thing made that was made. 

In him was life, and the life was the light of men. 

The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

 

Jesus is the answer to everything!

My posts are like buses, nothing for ages, then a load at once….

 

 

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Update..

I think it’s been a week since I last wrote anything, it seems more like a month. We’ve been camping at our church group’s festival at Stoneleigh and I both loved and hated it. Both children were poorly whilst we were there, our three year old decided sleeping wasn’t for him, well, definitely not in the tent and the baby had quite a temperature and I was really worried at times. However, it also showed me what an awesome family God places us in when we let Him and the love and care and company we’ve had whilst we’ve been there has been awe inspiring. Going to these things is so different when you’re married and have little ones. I went to the first one 5 years ago, 5 months before I got married and at that time I was able to just do whatever I wanted and be fully involved. So things have changed but I don’t think for the worse, I think they’re different and God has worked in us and spoken to us despite not being able to concentrate on preaches or worship. We have to remember He isn’t constrained by anything, He is God. We just think we are constrained, when we actually have Jesus living in us and He can do anything.

In relation to our house we’d had a lull for a week in regard to viewings. However! since Tuesday, it’s gone mad. Quite a few seem promising, and have been back for second and one even a third look. Although I am learning you cannot often tell what people actually think from what they are like when they’re with you. I always thought I was good at reading people, turns out I’m not that good.  The croft we first saw on Shetland is still on the market, we thought we’d lost out as a closing date was set, however, there were no offers so we may be back on!

It is quite exciting, Chris is travelling out in a couple of weeks with his dad to view the croft. They’re going to drive up to Aberdeen, get the overnight Northlink ferry to Lerwick, drive to see the house and croft and then drive back to Lerwick to again get the overnight ferry back to Aberdeen. I LOVE the sound of doing this, but it just wasn’t practical for me to do it. So Chris has got the privilege. I’ll try and get him to take photographs to put up on here. I rang the owner of the croft to book the viewing, he has such a beautiful voice! and I could understand him which is always a bonus.

We are also going out to the Orkney’s fairly soon for a family holiday and to look at ‘properties’, I am so looking forward to taking the journey there, we love the ferries, it is so exciting travelling there, first from Scotland to mainland Orkney and then from Kirkwall in Orkney to Sanday. We’re looking forward to seeing the difference in the landscape and wildlife from April which is when we last went to now and also the difference in weather and light! Also looking forward to a bit of a break maybe.

Haha – in relation to potentially becoming crofters, I’ve been reading this morning about butchery, tanning sheep hides and spinning your own wool. More to come on that possibly….:D stoneleigh

over and out!

Cathy

My husband

image.jpegI feel like I need to talk about Chris. ” an ode to Chris” ❤️

I haven’t always been and am often not what I would call a good wife, it’s been a steep learning curve on how to share my life, how to give rather than take, what it means to  love and be with someone and it’s one I’m nowhere near skilled at yet. But you know what, this is for keeps, we made a promise to each other and to God when we got married and I think if we always act from this perspective then in the long run all will be well.

I’m not always good at showing respect, I’m impatient, I expect my needs met rather than looking to what my role should be and how to love others well. And I think God is often prompting me in a kind and gentle manner saying “listen” “watch” “don’t react quite so quickly”, and I think He Says “first and foremost you are mine”, “look at me first”. I love psalm 27:8 – you have said, “Seek my face.”My heart says to you, “Your face, LORD, do I seek.” And proverbs 3:5-6 “trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him and He will make straight your paths”.

We are two imperfect people attempting to do life together permanently. Because that’s the way it should be. And it’s only through Gods love and mercy and the forgiveness we have through Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross that we can do this and keep forgiving and loving because of the love and forgiveness we have known through Jesus. It may not always look like that. Or feel like that. But that is how it is. Gods grace is awesome.

Chris is gentle and kind, he is hard working and thorough. He is a loving dad and has a wicked sense of humour. He is practical and can make things and fix things in a way I really don’t understand. Whatever he undertakes  he is wholehearted about it. He loves God and sometimes battles with self doubt. (He also loves rc planes and fpv) He is Chris, he is awesome, he is precious and he is loved.

When God talks about love he says if there is any excellence, look at that. I so often don’t, I so often focus on bad stuff, but that’s not Gods way and I think He is a slowly coaching me through this. I love that He gets us completely and loves us exactly how and where we are. He also loves us so much that He doesn’t just leave us there.

Night!

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC2LZEfOvs0T5X1esnkyRmAw (This is Chris’ YouTube Channel, I think he would love people to take a look) #drones #rc #aeroplanes

The Journey Begins

Thanks for joining me! So!!! We (the Shepherd’s) are starting our quest for a different type of life. God willing…

In short, we want to move from Derbyshire, England in a small terraced house, to either an Orkney island or Shetland, preferably to a little house or croft/smallholding with some land and this blog is going to document it all! The good, the bad and the ugly (perhaps not too ugly). Oh yes, and we haven’t really got a clue what we are doing. Should be entertaining.

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