Well, the journey of parenting is a road of many sacrifices. God is constantly doing a sanctifying work in my life through the challenges and struggles of being a mother. This journey is full of joy and blessing, but it demands a dying to self in many areas of life. Before I had children I had NO IDEA how hard it can be sometimes. I could not fathom the depth of sacrifice and strain that parenting requires. Sometimes the level of chaos and intensity of one day is just unbelievable. I think no matter how hard you try you really cannot describe how hard parenting can sometimes be. The only way to find out is to become a parent yourself. I must say, however, that all the stretching, growing, sacrificing, etc. is soooo worth it. Nothing has ever been so hard as being a mother and yet the joy and fulfillment are beyond measure. I am thankful for the high calling of motherhood, and that the Lord has entrusted me with this beautiful privilege. I am also thankful that He is using all the fatigue, chaos, and weightiness of the responsibility to prune my character and draw me close to Himself. I KNOW I am not adequate in my own strength and am forced to run to Him for guidance and strength.
Well, all of that to share with you that Matt and I recently made another sacrifice in our parenting journey. I can say we were giddy with joy in knowing this is best for our family. You see we traded in our black leather, big rimmed tires, dvd player and remote suburban in for a white, twelve passenger plain jane van. :) The people at the dealership were laughing at us, and I can say we were really happy. We know the Lord has led us on this journey, and we embrace it with all of our hearts. We know we do not look cool, lots of people think we are crazy............, but we are too busy to care. We have a joy in wholeheartedly working with all our might to raise up our five children in the ways of the Lord. We are doing kingdom work; this is our life and our ministry. It is exhausting and yet wonderfully rewarding. One day we will not need the big, ugly, white van. One day maybe I will go back to plush leather interior, and I have a feeling I will look back on these days and miss carting around my van full of blessings. Yes, I will take ugly if it is the best functioning thing for our not so little family. :) By the way, I am LOVING the plain vanilla van. It is so roomy and so much easier to get kiddos in and out. God is so good providing just what we need.