Saturday, April 22, 2017

Quotes by Daniel part 3

I have to go to the bathroom,” Daniel let me know last Saturday, as soon as we unloaded David's bike and Daniel's scooter from the back of the van at their school parking lot.

You do?” I asked him with a frown, knowing there was no bathroom available.

I'm not too exciting,” he assured me.

What do you mean?

I mean I can wait,” he translated for me.

“I want to be a real basketball player,” inspired by March Madness. His running commentary when he plays nerf basketball on his own is usually a close game between SC and Gonzaga. Since March, he has gotten more serious about playing real basketball on the court as well.


Orange!” he yelled out at the dentist's office yesterday. “BEAUTIFUL orange!” and he held up his brand new treasured toothbrush like an Olympic torch. He was thrilled that they had his favorite color this time.

Oh Dog. I missed you,” I smiled to hear such a sweet voice drift out of his room. But then a not-so-sweet voice followed. “I'm going to cut all your heads off!

“Underwear first,” talking to himself as he was getting dressed after his bath. “Underwear ALL-ways first.”

"What are you doing, Daniel?" Charly called out while we were lingering at the dinner table with our guests and Daniel, who had already left the table, was being suspiciously quiet. "Picking my nose!" Daniel replied in a loud voice from the kitchen. 

Are you playing a game?” He was already kneeling down next to a stranger on her iPad in the vision therapy waiting room as I pushed the door open a second or so after he'd entered the office. ("Stranger" is actually not a word in his vocabulary. People he doesn't know could be classified as “friends he hasn't gotten to know yet.”)

Wait! I want to stay on!” he yelled as I exited onto the 2nd floor of the doctor's office. He thought the stranger he had just started to get to know on the elevator, who was continuing on to the 4th floor, was pretty interesting and he wasn't ready to leave.

“I still can't stand you,” in frustration after I tried explaining one more time how to do a vision therapy exercise.
“I CAN WALK!” he announced to the produce stocker at King Soopers. as he happily pushed his walker and fully enjoyed his first outing with his new walking cast. “That's cool, buddy,” the guy replied. “I like it.”

I want to do it!” volunteering to walk on stilts during a class field trip on Tuesday.


“Are you pretty excited or really excited that Daddy's coming home tomorrow?” he asked me last night, as we're coming to the end of Charly's almost 3 week trip to China.

“Really excited,” I told him. “How about you?”

Me too,” he said with a big smile.

Quotes by Daniel part 2

Quotes by Daniel









Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Focus

We've been working on therapy exercises quite a lot recently.

Physical therapy to strengthen leg and feet muscles that have been “sleeping.”

And vision therapy to help David and Daniel's eyes with tracking.


David has a really encouraging physical therapist who has been helping him to improve his walking skills and his balance.

Yesterday she had him practice putting one foot directly in front of the other and holding that position for as long as he could. On his first attempts, he could only stand for a couple of seconds before he fell over. His arms were flapping wildly, and he felt discouraged that it was so hard for him. Then she said, “Look at the yellow strap across the room. Keep looking at it and try again.” By focusing on that strap, he was able to hold his position for over 30 seconds!

Having a focal point helped him to keep his focus off of his imbalance, so that he could center himself much better.

One of the vision therapy exercises we've been working on at home involves the boys lying on the floor, while I hold a ping pong ball attached to a string over their heads. They have to follow the star painted on the bottom of the ball with just their eyes while I swing it horizontally, vertically, and in a slow circle. David has learned how to keep his focus, so that I am able to give him spelling words and math problems to solve while he's following the star with his eyes. Daniel's eyes can track for little while, but then they start darting around so that I have to keep reminding him to follow the star. (It reminds me of the wise men.)

We've enjoyed reading the Chronicles of Narnia books together these past couple of weeks. We finished Prince Caspian on Sunday and watched the Disney movie last night. It struck me how Lucy, with childlike faith, was focused on Aslan throughout their journey, while the others had to grow in their desire both to see him and then to trust in him.

It's so easy to lose focus on what's most important in life, isn't it?

Focus.

Helps us to balance.

Helps us to have the right priorities.

Helps us to find our way.

What are you focusing on these days?



Saturday, April 15, 2017

Father, Forgive Them

Father, forgive them,” Jesus cried out on the most horrific day in history. “For they do not know what they are doing.” (Luke 23:34)

In Facing Your Giants, Max Lucado writes, “No one had a clearer sense of right and wrong than the perfect Son of God. Yet, 'when he suffered, he didn't make any threats but left everything to the one who judges fairly.' (1 Peter 2:23)

This morning before the boys left for school, we talked about what Good Friday means and we read in The Jesus Storybook Bible about the Last Supper, the Garden of Gethsemane, the Arrest, and the Crucifixion:

My body is like this bread. It will break,” Jesus told them. “This cup is like my blood. It will pour out.”

“But this is how God will rescue the whole world. My life will break and God's broken world will mend. My heart will tear apart—and your hearts will heal. Just as the passover lamb died, so now I will die instead of you. My blood will wash away all of your sins. And you'll be clean on the inside—in your hearts.”

“God was going to pour into Jesus' heart all the sadness and brokenness in people's hearts. He was going to pour into Jesus' body all the sickness in people's bodies. God was going to have to blame his son for everything that had gone wrong. It would crush Jesus.”

Father, forgive them,” Jesus gasped. “They don't understand what they're doing.”

"It wasn't the nails that kept Jesus there. It was love."

This morning as we read and talked about the events, I wondered for the first time how the disciples must have felt when Judas arrived with the soldiers to arrest Jesus. Clearly he had betrayed Jesus (who had forgiven him before the act had even been committed). But I'm sure the disciples must have felt a sense of betrayal too. How could Judas--who had spent as much time with the Master as they had--turn against Him like that? 


On Good Friday we are humbled by Jesus' death on the cross. His willing sacrifice as the perfect Lamb of God. God's forgiveness extended. Undeserved mercy for sinners.

But after we've received and been cleansed by God's forgiveness, how well do we extend His forgiveness to others?

Last Sunday at Pulpit Rock, Thomas addressed the issue of forgiveness and how it relates to our joy. He asked, "Why would you want to hold on to something that's hurting you?"  He challenged us with the statement: "There's never a reason not to forgive." And, "Whatever Jesus expects of you, He empowers you to do."

On this topic, Max Lucado writes, “Forgiveness is, at its core, choosing to see your offender with different eyes.”

“To forgive is to move on," he explains, "not to think about the offense anymore. You don't excuse him, endorse her, or embrace them. You just route thoughts about them through heaven. You see your enemy as God's child and revenge as God's job.”

When we try to seek revenge, he says it "removes God from the equation. Vigilantes displace and replace God. 'I'm not sure you can handle this one, Lord. You may punish too little or too slowly. I'll take this matter into my hands, thank you.'”

Kind of like Peter, who was quick to react in Jesus' defense and sliced off a guard's ear with his sword. Jesus then reprimanded him, “Peter, this is not the way.” (John 18:10-11)

Can we entrust ourselves like Jesus did, in the face of mistreatment, to the One who judges rightly?

Can we echo Jesus' words, “Father forgive them”?

Can we see our offenders as God's children and route our thoughts about them through heaven?

Can we pray for their hearts to be healed as ours have--through Jesus' broken body and blood poured out on the cross?

Jesus died so that we--and they--could experience true reconciliation.

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Linking up with Velvet Ashes this week on the Theme of Forgive

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