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Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Need milky prayers

Now that I'm sick, my supply is practically zero. I was lucky to get an ounce each time I pumped last night. After more than four hours between pumps and more than three hours sleep, I still only pumped ONE OUNCE. I resorted to formula because he was hungry. Well, he refused the formula. I turned him over to Mike, telling him that if I don't get sleep, there's no milk, and since he won't take formula, that means a feeding tube. Thankfully Mike understood the severity of it and took over. I'm pumping over two ounces each time today, but since he eats three, I'm barely keeping up. (I pump more frequently than he eats.) I'm taking insane amounts of More Milk Plus, drinking till I float, eating around the clock, resting as much as possible, using all my old pumping tricks, and nothing is helping. We're in a sorry state right now.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Mikey Update 1/5/09

We saw the craniofacial surgeon yesterday. She thinks she spotted hemifacial microsomia, which is a genetic nerve disorder. If he has it, it's very minor. They don't do anything about it until the child is about 5 or 6, after he has a full set of baby teeth and they can see the full extent of the disorder. This is nothing to worry about.

We see the craniosacral therapist on Friday. She does cranial manipulation and has a lot of success in a short amount of time. Hopefully she'll have luck with Mikey. She is working with our wonderful chiropractor, and they feel that will help our efforts.

Mikey nursed three times between New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, but he quickly refused again. He's also having trouble with the bottle and my finger, so I know he's having pinched nerve issues.

He is also gagging, choking and coughing a lot, especially during and after eating, and he's congested after eating. It makes for some long nights 'sleeping' upright in a chair. We're having a modified barium swallow done on 1/28 to check for aspiration.

On top of all the existing issues, he has an ear infection, so he's on antibiotics. Let's just say he's not enjoying that.

He nursed once today, but once he fatigued, he refused again. His tongue doesn't work properly for any length of time, and his jaw fatigues. Our lactation consultant thinks this is a pinched nerve issue.

Monday, January 4, 2010

God's Blessings This Week 12/28-1/3

Monday: Ellie got her first sticker on her potty-training chart!

Tuesday: God spoke to me about my marriage by way of a blog post. I am not alone!

Wednesday: Mikey instantly calms when I look at him.

Thursday: Mikey nursed for the first time in weeks!

Friday: God spoke to me through my own words. (See this blog post.)

Saturday: Ellie called out to Mikey at dinner, and he turned his head to her and smiled.

Sunday: Ellie went pee pee in the potty first thing this morning!

Review of this week's recipes

Meaty Monday:
Gluten-free pasta w/ sauce from a jar and crumbled spicy sausage - Always depends on the sauce; our new sauce didn't cut it
Did Sesame Garlic Broccoli tonight instead
Garlic Bread - sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds for added crunch and nutrition...yum!
Tasty Tuesday:
CrockPot Tuscan Chicken from Saving Dinner served over rice - served with Italian green beans (sauteed green beans tossed with Italian dressing)
Wild Card Wednesday:
Old Chicago!
Spaghetti Night (Well, since we did Spaghetti Night on Meaty Monday, we'll do Meaty Monday on Spaghetti Night):
Morton's Roast from Costco on the grill
Sesame Broccoli (like this recipe) - had to switch to sweet potato fries

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Bible reading tips and reasons

Thoughts on the ESV Study Bible (now that I’ve read it)

This is a great review, but this particular section - which can be applied to any translation, not just the ESV - contains some thought-provoking tips, if you will:

1. If God made sure his words were recorded for us, why wouldn’t I want to read all of them numerous times?
2. Reading large portions of Scripture regularly slows me down so I can think about life from an eternal perspective. I was in tears today as I finished Revelation, realizing the purpose for which I was created and the sure future that lies ahead.
3. In my daily life, I am constantly bombarded with images, philosophies, thoughts, reasonings, and attractions from the world, my flesh, and the devil. I need large quantities of God’s thoughts, empowered by his Spirit, to resist them.
4. I trust my own thoughts too much.
5. Each time I read through the Bible, I’m humbled as I realize how little I actually know and understand God’s Word.
6. Reading a lot of the Bible helps me more easily see how it all fits together.
7. As a leader of congregational worship, I want people’s faith to rest on God’s Word, not my music or opinions. Therefore, I want Scripture to be the overflow of my heart, not something I occasionally use for a desired emotional effect.
8.The ESVSB was very even-handed in providing alternate interpretations of
difficult passages, while continually directing my attention to other Scriptures for
greater clarity.
9. The ESVSB notes never seek to say more than the Scriptures themselves say.
10. The large number of maps, charts, and illustrations were extremely helpful for understanding the geographical settings, details, and overall flow of different books.
11. I repeatedly felt pastored through the comments, as my heart was directed towards the living Word, the crucified and risen Savior, Jesus Christ.
I hope this is helpful to all who study the word, and I find it especially poignant for those of us setting out to read the entire Bible this year.

Describe me in one word

Please leave a comment with your response!

New Year Benediction

Thank you, Joyfully Living, for this beautiful graphic, and thank you, Felicia, for sharing it!

Bible in a Year 2010

A friend issued a challenge to join her in reading the entire Bible in 2010. I accepted her challenge, and you can, too! I will be using my own reading plan, found at http://www.biblestudytools.com/bible-reading-plan/read.aspx. Here you can choose how you'd like to read the Bible. I chose chronological. I started the plan in December, but I only got through three days before I got distracted, so I restarted my plan yesterday. I look forward to the challenge and to learning what God has to teach me this year!

Friday, January 1, 2010

God Speak

My day is just full of God speak....and Thank GOD for that! I was on Comfort Joy's blog again and saw another great scripture verse I had to share: "The LORD is near to the brokenhearted, and saves the crushed in spirit" (Psalm 34:18). I thought, "That's good! I bet someone needs to hear that right now, so I'll post it on facebook!" It was only after I posted it and reread it that I realized it applies to me right now. I just said, out loud and with a great sigh of realization, "Oh, wow." God knows us better than we know ourselves, and he knows just what we need. Thank God for God speak!

What is "God speak," you might be asking? Well, it's the infinite ways God speaks to us. The key is knowing when it is, in fact, God speaking and not our own minds or, God forbid, the devil himself. Remember: the devil knows the word of God as well, and he's an expert at taking it out of context and of delivering it in deceiving ways. Just look at how he tricked Eve and how he tried to cause Jesus to stumble in the wilderness. How do you know it's God speaking to you? Pray constantly. One of my favorite passages is from I Thessalonians 5 (and I recommend reading the entire chapter): "16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you." Additionally, I frequently recite this passage found in Matthew 7:7 and Luke 11:9: "Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you." All of those verbs are in a tense that implies infinite continuity: ask and keep on asking, seek and keep on seeking, knock and keep on knocking. In other words, constantly seek God, satisfying your spiritual hunger with his word as you would your physical hunger with food and your thirst with water.

2010 - My year for renewal through prayer and study

I felt the urge to follow suit and create a New Year blog entry. I really don't think I could write one better than the blog I posted earlier today, but I didn't realize that was a New-Years-Day blessing until much later. Additionally, many of my fellow bloggers have inspired me to thank God for 2010 in a big way. I'd like to give credit to some of them right now for their New Year inspirations. Thank you Felicia and Rev. Mark Brown, and this Maxwell's blog gives me great inspiration for my family. Thank you, Comfort Joy Designs, for directing me to this perfect new-year scripture:

"Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert." Isaiah 43:19

I love to make resolutions. I don't just make them for the new year, though. I make them all year long! In fact, I start my "New Year Resolutions" about a month early ("running start" and all that). That said, here are a few of my current resolutions:

  • Get into my healthy weight range by my birthday (6/13) - started after Ellie was born (got 5 pounds closer) and restarted after Mikey's birth this November
  • Study God's word every single day - started almost a month ago, a little bumpy but gaining momentum
  • Strive to be the wife God would have me be - a few years in the making

Finally, I added a new resolution for 2010. (Yes, here's an actual New Year Resolution.):

Use my blog to bring Jesus to my friends and family and anyone else God directs my way

So, my most wonderful friends and inspirations, I'm calling on you to hold me accountable, keep up your incredible, faith-filled leadership and follow God with all your hearts. To you and everyone else: I'll pray for you and I ask for your prayers for me!

God bless you and send you

Equip yourself with God's word (I'm glad I did!)

I have observed that I am a better person - more in control of myself, more free and more positive - when I study God's word every day. I got away from my daily studies when life happened and I neglected to make studying a priority. I really started to spiral downward. I had two sleeping children yesterday afternoon, so I sat down right away to get back on track. I started by reading my daily scripture and prayer for our country (part of a 40-day prayer challenge). Then I completed my study on Eve. (Thank you again, Jen, for getting me involved in that study!) My Eve study led me to explore the Word a bit more, sending me on a scriptural path through Ephesians and I Thessalonians. I completed my study, put away my books and moved on with life as both kids woke up just as I completed. (I thanked God for giving me the time to study. He knew I needed it!) I didn't think much more about my studies, other than being grateful for the 180-degree turn my day and my attitude took after my time of renewal.

Today I was on an emotional roller coaster. Mikey started nursing again last night and this morning but then completely refused this afternoon. The experience makes me feel so disheartened and is so trying. I know God won't give me more than I can handle, but that doesn't mean He doesn't challenge me! I was telling Mike how hard it is on me - the emotions, the hormones, the lack of sleep. I told him how I "knew" the nursing wouldn't last, but I talked myself out of the negativity and into hoping it would. I further explained that I never used to allow myself to hope because I "knew" I'd be disappointed, and I'd rather be pleasantly surprised. I said all this with quite the tone of vexation. Immediately, a verse popped into my head: "For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope" (Jeremiah 29:11). That was part of today's daily scripture from my 40-day prayer challenge. I was humbled. A couple of minutes later I pursued my self-pitying diatribe with more talk of how disheartened I was. As soon as I said the word "disheartening," another verse popped into my head: "And he told them a parable, to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart" (Luke 18:1). Mind you, this particular verse was a memory verse from a few weeks ago. (I guess I memorized it!) I laughed. I couldn't believe how right God was (well, duh!) when he told us to equip ourselves with His word (put on the armor of God, Ephesians 6:10-18), part of my study tangent yesterday. I told Mike about this. Even though I felt he might not appreciate the situation, I knew I couldn't keep it to myself. I have to admit feeling a little guilty, though. Here I was not only distrusting God's goodness but expressing that distrust to another person (though not quite in those words)! I prayed for God's help with that and thanked Him for His goodness. He put it on my heart not only to study His word but to study those particular words these last few weeks. He IS good. I learned an important lesson today:

He loves me so much that I always have hope, so I ought always to pray and not lose heart.

By the way, I have committed to a challenge issued by a fellow facebooker, Rev. Mark Brown. The challenge is to constantly seek God in 2010, committing to an hour of study each day. Rev. Brown provides a scripture a day and insights as the Spirit moves him. To sign up for the challenge or simply follow along, go to Rev. Brown's blog at http://journeydeeperin2godsword.wordpress.com/. I know today, more than ever, how very important constant exposure to God's word is. As Ray Comfort of Way of the Master says, you feed your body with food every day; isn't it just as important to feed your heart and mind with the Word?