Monday, January 9, 2017

Secrets From The Stable

It has been such a long time since I wrote a blog post. I have thought about revamping my blog, giving it a new look and start posting more often. But I have 4 boys, and a crazy life, and I well…Can’t. And if I am to be completely honest, everyone and their mom and their mom’s mom blogs. Have you noticed this trend? My time blogging has come to an end. But that is not why I am posting this. I won’t take down my blog as I know it is still to this day a source of some kind of comfort for girls walking the journey of infertility. I know now why that is a subject that is difficult for me to say anything in anymore. I am no longer climbing that mountain. That was a season for me, and a short one compared to the years and sometimes life some women have to walk it. I have no voice for that journey any more. My voice that went through those hard days is written for anyone who would ever need to read it. I am so thankful, so so very thankful that during that time I did not listen to people who did not agree with my complete and honest approach of living in a glass house and allowing people to see me stumble, fall, question and even be really angry with God. Jesus was glorified in that blog time and time again. AMEN?!? (I can hear you all!)

Okay, the real reason I am posting!!! Secrets From the Stable. ((If you don’t know what I am talking about you can read “Meet Gabe” on the right hand side of my blog or email me and I will tell you all about it!))  I can’t even. Really, I have thought about writing this since the advent season started. This year was by far the absolute best year my family had during the month of December. All the pieces of the puzzle came rushing together. Jesus in His sweetness made my paths cross with a sweet Girl who designed a Shepherd. In all my days y’all I had never thought of a Shepherd to go with my sweet animals, but can you make any more perfect?? I can’t. So this year Gabe and Shep teamed up. I wasn’t too sure my kids would remember Obi, the sweet Owl who helps them piece together the Nativity Scene. But boy did they. When he wasn’t there on the first day they were very concerned. But he came as promised and they were thrilled with his arrival each and every time he flew in and out. And this year we also had Kia the camel join in!! He brought three sweet boxes for the kids to fill up with pictures, drawings, and gifts for Jesus. It was truly incredible. I have 7 animals, with 7 different themes, and 7 different stories. By the time Jaden and Ty are  9 (only two more Christmases, stop it. Stop it now) We will have all of them in my home at once.

It has transformed our Christmas. It has brought it into focus, but not just for the kids….for Kevin and I as well. We have seen the transformation in my kids as they focus on the true meaning and realize that the gifts are all extra. They see now that Christmas Trees and lights, and decorations are all for one of the grandest most exquisite birthday parties you will ever be invited to. One for a King! They speak less and less of Christmas day because all month we are celebrating. In fact, all my boys separately took time to tell me they were sad a bit for Christmas day to come because our Stable friends would leave. I don’t brag, or boast about SFTS to gain anything, I am not trying to sell it….I truly share with you because If you haven’t considered doing this I really wish you would.
I posted on the Facebook page that I was closing the page and the website until next season where I will relaunch it. We have so many things We want to improve so that it is easier to navigate and understand. I still feel people get a bit confused by it and I need to make it more simple. I have prayed over and over and OVER if this should be something more? As in published and copyrighted and sold in a book store. That all sounds so dreamy. I have of course had moments of fear that someone who I have shared my ideas and dreams with would take it and make it their own without me involved in it. I would be lying if I said I never had those thoughts or concerns. But I REFUSE to live in that fear. Jesus has told me time and time again to share without reservation, it has been my whole life. To be transparent and to live in that glass house. There was a season when I tried not to be this way. That I allowed the voices of man to speak louder than the voice of God and I lost my identity of who I was IN Christ. And when I find myself doing that, stepping outside of my wholeness IN Christ…. I get anxious and worried and concerned. BUT JESUS. Oh y’all, Jesus just on repeat says “I got it.” And I breath deep, and step back into my Identity of His daughter who HE will protect and guard. He is not concerned; so why would I be?

I allowed myself to go down the what if path of fear once. And you know what? It isn’t all bad. My focus, my heart, my desire is that Jesus would be brought into homes all across the world. However, He chooses to use me I say yes to even if it wasn’t what I had hoped for. His way will be greater and so much more gift filled. I rest. Yes, I rest in that!

So I am not sure what the future will hold for SFTS but We have plans on stopping or not sharing. In fact next year we plan on sharing more! As you know my girl Jamie is my partner in all of this. I can’t take credit for all of it ever. Jesus knew I needed someone and she has always been that someone. She has inspired, she has invested, she has stood with me in my fear and walked with me back into our identities IN Jesus. She has spent HOURS on the phone with me brainstorming and talking through each animal and what each animal’s theme would be. She has written me a poem in I kid you not, no less than ten minutes. She is my soul sister. As we remain open handed about SFTS Jesus has put even more into those hands. That is the beauty of living our life in openness, there is always room for more. The more closed off, the tighter the space. Try letting go of your squeeze…Jesus never ever disappoints. He has been giving us gifts for new things left and right. We feel overwhelmed with His goodness and trust in us.

We have never felt like we should advertise. Every single time I would post something on FB it would say “Do you want 5,000 people to know more about your page? Pay us $10 and we will make that happen.” Every. Single. Time. And every time I would pause and think…. yeah…. Jesus 5,000??? And he would say “No.” I rest in that answer. We have 174 people who have liked the Facebook Page, Y’all that was all your doing. You shared it on your page and passed the word out to your friends. What a sweet gift it was to see you comment or share on that page. I wish you could have seen my face light up each and every time. So thank you!! I believe that SFTS will be passed along in ways that are way bigger then we can see or even know. And at the moment in time the only reason I would ever want to “sell” anything would be to make it more simple for you guys. I know some of you love the package idea. But for now, Jesus has asked me this “is there anything free in this world?” Very rarely.  Right now, free is the theme until He says otherwise. I have zero desire for profit. That has never been a motivator for us in any of this.

So I ask this, pray. Please pray that we would never allow fear to be a driving force for SFTS and future projects Jesus is releasing in our hearts. Pray that Jamie and I would be open handed in all things, and never tighten our grip with ownership…it is not ours. It has always been HIS. Pray that Jesus would do what He wants with it so that more families can experience Him in their homes next Christmas. And more than anything, pray that everything we do drips with His goodness and praise and that He is Glorified in it all!