Thursday, July 22, 2010

"big waves!"

Today is National Fragile X Awareness I thought I would post an update to make a marker of sorts as to where we are at in our personal journey. To begin with, I must say this summer has been going exceptionally well for Landen. He has had two summer school sessions and has really enjoyed it. We see him growing up a lot. He is talking really well, and loves to sing along to every show he watches. It is really funny to hear his voice!

We are really proud of him...we went again this year to Austin to our friends' house (The Low's) and we noticed that his anxiety was much better overall, and he of course loved being on the lake. It is such a joy to see him able to float out there in his life jacket, splashing around to his heart's content. It is a great time for our family to be able to do something together as a mini-vacation. And there were no incidents of "Landen-mischief" stories to post about (as I did last year..=) He got to ride in the golf cart with "Mr Tom" again. He likes to look at the "reindeer" (the deer that wander through their backyard in the hill country). He calls the hills "mountains".

Last weekend we went to my mom's house in Kemah. Landen gets to ride his 3 wheeled bike out there. We also took the ferry to Bolivar Peninsula and hung out on the beach for a while. We had a great time. Lanny played in the water with his Spongebob buggy board, played in the sand, and got stung by a jellyfish (along with the rest of us! yuck!) He handled it quite well and got back in the water within minutes. I don't know if that makes us bad parents to let him go back out, but we were just so proud to see him so brave and having such a grand time. There were no more creepy creatures after that! He perched himself on his board, yelling "big wave!" and gleefully anticipating each one to send him tossing about.

This summer so far has been quite interesting...we find ourselves feeling some relief and renewed hope as we watch Landen learning more and settling himself in new ways. At the same time, there are many peripheral struggles, fears, and dreams that we feel God walking us through- giving us new perspectives and waves of peace that keep us tethered to Him. We are seeking the Lord about many decisions right now. Sometimes the waiting for answers is gut-wrenching, testing our resolve and hope to the limits. Each day, I find such encouragement from the words in Streams in the Desert, a wonderful devotional book written by a great woman of faith from the early 1900's, L. B. Cowman. The writings come from a period of time in which she cared for her dying husband after they had journeyed the world together as missionaries. Talk of summer and beaches and waves reminds me of a particularly great entry in her book. She spoke of how Pebble Beach in California has become such a tourist attraction because of all the beautiful pebbles and rocks that are found there....

"The raging white surf continually roars, thundering and pounding against the rocks on the shore. These stones are trapped in the arms of the merciless waves. They are tossed, rolled, rubbed together, and ground against the sharp edges of the cliffs. Both day and night, this process of grinding continues relentlessly. And what is the result? Tourists from around the world flock there to collect the beautiful round stones." She contrasts that with the area just around the cove, a quiet one that is "protected from the face of the ocean, sheltered from the storms, and always in the sun, the sands are covered with an abundance of pebbles never sought by the travelers." She goes on to say these other rocks have been left as "they have always been-rough, unpolished, and devoid of beauty-for polish is the result of difficulties."

How great is the challenge to entrust our sharp edges to the All-Knowing chisel of our God. But we can be assured that the waves and storms of life are shaping us into something more refined when we submit ourselves to the process. I think the greatest challenge is keeping our hearts longing for that polished and crafted piece of work that He will create in us, and not escape the throws of the pain it takes to get there.

"His way is in the whirlwind and the storm" Nahum 1:3.

"He made me into a polished arrow." Isaiah 49:2