Thursday, July 18, 2013


After a solid two months of summer-time busy-ness . . . the t-ball practices and games, the swim team practices and meets, the week spent back in Lincoln doing VBS . . . it is so refreshing to be home and have no pressing engagements.  I've been thinking about home lately.  Two years ago we were making plans to move out this way and after the home I had hoped for fell through we really had no idea where we would be living.  I had plans for living in Holdrege, not Arapahoe.  Then a rental with three bedrooms would be available the end of July--we were emailed a few pictures of a rather messy home, in desperation we decided it was workable.  And here we are.  Is it my dream home?  No.  But it is a happy little place.  We've painted some walls, filled it with lots of spruced-up {mostly second-hand} furniture, added family photos and lots of books.  Flowers bloom outside and we're getting some veggies from the garden.  Josh told me a few months ago that he never will worry about where we live, that he thought I could turn any home into something special. I have to say that might be one of the best compliments he has ever given me. I have thought about how there are some big, nice "we've arrived" houses I've been in or seen pictures of and how they just seem so cold and "soul-less."  And I think of the homes that belong to so many of my friends and family members--how they burst with life and warmth because somebody is there paying attention to the little details.  I would much rather have some small little place to invest my heart in than have something rich and grand and empty. It's not the fancy stuff that makes the home--it is the people there and the memories you are making.

I think far too often everyone is buying into the notion that if it is bigger or newer or trendier then it MUST be better.  I sit in my little bright blue ranch with a yard of grass and weeds (that if we're being honest tips slightly more toward weeds . . .).  My two girls share a room.  My three boys share a room.  Josh and I have the smallest of the rooms with our bed shoved up against the wall in the corner.  Optimal arrangement?  Probably not.  However, this is where God put us.  I could live my life all bent-out-of-shape and waiting for the "arrived" moment to happen.  But oh would I be missing out!  I was flipping through our photo album from last year and all those pictures that captured daily moments, and all I can think is what a great life!  What a happy life!  We can choose to be content anywhere.  Or we can choose to be miserable and keep waiting for the next best thing.  I think my picture project has opened my eyes to the blessings around me.  I have always wanted to keep a running account of things I am thankful for, and I think in the end, that is what my photo albums are--a visual way of counting blessings. Life is so full of beauty.

 Sure if we had more money we could have some cooler things.  But I can't help but think of all the skills we wouldn't have.  Josh has really learned a lot about car repair.  If we could afford to take our vehicles in or afford nicer vehicles he wouldn't have learned that skill.  And I have learned so much in the DIY area!  When you can't afford the things you like the only other option is to figure out how to make it.  We are more capable than we were when we first married.  That is good stuff.

Recently I came across this blog post "God's Board" (really, you must click over and read it!). ;o) It made me think about why I use pinterest, and I think I would have to say it is for inspiration and a way to organize all that inspiration without saving pictures or links to my computer.  Dare I say I find it educational?  I like to keep learning new things and finding new recipes and learning how to dress myself . . . (some of us just aren't talented in that way--I've given up on ever figuring out how to apply make-up!). ;o)  I love what she says here though, "God has given you a tremendous gift. He has chosen your life for you. He has chosen the lessons that He wants you to master. He has chosen your hardships, your headaches, your health problems, your children, your husband, your house. Let the things that God has chosen for you be the things that you willingly pin. Things that you say, “Yes! This is my style!"  And so I think about what God has "pinned" on my "life board" right now--He has me right where He wants me.  And you too!  You are exactly where you are supposed to be.  How wonderful to go through life trusting in His sovereignty over everything.  Anyway, just a little something on my heart right now.  It's so much easier to go through life with a happy and joyful attitude than a grumpy one (trust me, I've tried it both ways . . .). ;o)

Psalm 16:5-6
The Lord is the portion of my inheritance and my cup;
You support my lot.
The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places;
Indeed, my heritage is beautiful to me.


Anna said...

Oh, Janna--this is so beautifully written, and what a precious reminder of what's truly important in living the life the Lord puts before you. I *LOVE* the description of your vibrant happy home *insert romantic sigh here* --and your thoughts of what the Lord has put on your heart...thanks for the encouragement, dear friend! (I've been praying for you...hope it's a smooth week!) *hugs*

Kathryn said...

It's posts like *this* that make me cheer, "WRITE YOUR BOOK!" I was teary eyed reading this. SO very, very beautiful. Thank you for sharing. (and I *love* the sunflower pictures, too. I don't think I can ever look at them as a weed--which I guess is just one more proof that I am, indeed, a city-girl)

sarah j. said...

so wonderful to hear about your happy home and your happy heart taking great care of this home God has given you. praise the Lord for the blessings that He showers on us! hope the rest of your summer is nice and relaxing. said...

Janna...even this older woman can read and learn! I spend a lot of time on pinterst and find myself actually thinking I'm "doing" those projects instead of just pinning them. Sick, I know! I want to "pin" my heart to the Lord...and let HIM make my home what HE wants it to be! Thank you for sharing this...I LOVE IT! {and I planted sunflowers this year!!!}

Brooke said...

Oh I love those verses! Need to put them on the fridge. What a wonderful reminder, thank you friend! (And yes, Kathy is right- WRITE YOUR BOOK! When you have a spare moment of course ;-))