Friday, August 30, 2013

i mean, God used a craft box.

here's the deal. i'm not naturally inclined to hang out and do intentionally fun things with my family. or my friends for that matter. i don't know why it's hard for me, but i think it has something to do with productivity.

i think it's unproductive to just have fun. i'd rather be working on something or reaching some end.
it's pretty selfish to say that out loud, but i'm coming to terms with not being an amazing human. i tend to say to my kids, you do your thing and i'll do my thing. 

you do your thing with those markers on the couch and i'll organize the pantry. that's usually what happens. or, if i hear you screaming and crying, i'll know you need me. but even then, i'm going to give it a good 10 seconds to see if you're just being a baby.
wait. you are a baby.

this amazing company, called kiwi crate sent us a fun box of crafts to do together. every month they send you a fun activity box. everything's all there... so cute!

 but this activity sat on my desk for a long time. i sort of dreaded it. because well, it was just too fun. not productive enough for me! we have things to do.

but we busted it out the other night and it really was so much fun to be together. and just laugh and adventure together in the neighborhood. it wasn't an errand, it wasn't my stuff. it was us, having fun. with no strings attached.

it was strange to me.

and i saw my sin in it. why is God so kind to me? to let me enjoy something and whisper, i want more of this for you. i want to change your heart in this.  just mind blowing and gentle, but exposing.

i think it would be easy to say, here's my deal and here's what i obviously need to do. 
i need to swing more towards type A. more structure. more planned out fun times. more organized days. be a better mom. and a better friend.

but every time i do that i fail. i try to be more structured. i try to change... it lasts for a bit, but then i eventually fail.
gosh, i feel a lot of shame for it.
and you've walked with me long enough on this blog to see me do it too. (i mean, no need to go back and find all my attempts at structure. haha. awkward sigh, look away.)

shame is not the same as conviction. because conviction brings hope.
shame brings darkness and slavery and is unending, cyclical.
no real solution if you're the solution.
but conviction says, here's a problem(fill in your blank). now here's the solution: look to the cross. it ends here.
you're off in this way, come sit in the shadow of the cross. look up! see where your savior said, no more shame? see where the blood says, i can change you, but you can't change you?

conviction brings hope, through death to self.
death to me: 
doing the good work.
trying harder.
being amazing.
doing better.
bringing the awesome.
believing in myself.

the truth is, i do need to change. and my family and friends would benefit from more structure and more intentionality(perhaps you're the opposite and your family would benefit from you not controlling every part of the day). whatever it is, we all sense the need to do better.

but what will we do with this sense...this conviction? will i wake up and say, we're doing things different today, giving myself over to the shame cycle? or will i ask God to do a work in me and make me different. a miracle. i literally need a new mind in so many ways. i'm so weak, i can't even follow through on simple tasks. i have little self control! i'm not a good mom or a good friend so much of the time.

use my weakness, God and change my heart. give me a new brain and a new heart, so that you will be glorified not me. this is where i want to sit and REST. this is the shadow of the cross, not the scorching sun of shame and the slavery of trying and failing once again.

a craft box did this to me.

God used a freakin' craft box to expose my sin and gently lead me to see the cross as my only hope for lasting change. he's wonderfully weird and creative.

thank you kiwi crate for sending us this awesome activity box. it was so much fun and much appreciated. i know it was a part of the summer discovery series, but i think it would be so so so great in the fall too! the little lanterns that glow are adorable. the stickers and colors and already ready crafts were wonderful.

(playing a matching game with the cards you sent us!)

or you can get $10 off your box when you sign up through this link!


  1. And sometimes He uses a blog. Wow. This is so me as well. Too productive. Praying for change. Thank you for sharing.

  2. I'm learning the same thing! (I think). This morning I heard a story about a lady who wanted to get pregnant so bad that she never did. As soon as she adopted, she got pregnant with twins. This preacher said it's the same spiritually...we want to bear fruit, we try to bear fruit, we are too stressed and don't bear the fruit. But as soon as we adopt His fruit as ours ("It is finished"), we relax, rest in His love, start to become who we really are and we bear fruit!!!! Thanks for letting me 'verbally process' that.
    I really enjoyed reading your post...thanks.
    D'Arcy Young

  3. so cute!! can i still do this if i don't have kids?! haha love your honesty in this post. thanks for sharing your heart!

    xo, sarah grace

  4. You should write a book. I would buy it, read it, cry over it (because even without being a mom myself your words are always so convicting I sometimes don't even want to read them), lend it to a friend, and then buy 10 more copies because I'd have more people I'd need to lend it to. This should happen. :]

  5. We all fall short but He is always enough. I love how creative God is and the things he uses to get our attention - even a box. Happy weekend!

  6. Jami!! All from a craft box. I love it. Thanks for being vulnerable. It is so encouraging. See where the blood says I can change you but you can't change you?" Love it

  7. beautiful and (convicting) post. it' so cheesey but so damn true: kids spell love, t-i-m-e. simply as Americans I think we tend to struggle with relaxation and having fun doing nothing. I love the way you describe shame. I will sit with you and REST in the shadow of the cross, knowing the only way to "improve" ourselves is in him and in that space.

  8. Yes! This is ME!! Maybe I need a craft box ... Lol. Thinking about this stuff a lot lately ...

  9. Thank you Jami for your honesty. You always seem to speak what I am thinking/feeling. I am the opposite of you (controlling) and I could let go more often. Thank you for always pointing it back to the cross.

  10. I really appreciate this post...for a couple of reasons. I have a very challenging relationship with my mom who was very much busy with every thing else when my sisters and I were growing up- I don't ever remember her playing with us or spending fun time with us. She didn't work, she was just too busy. I am trying to appreciate that side of her as an adult. On the flip side, I tend to do the opposite. I choose to spend my time with those who are dear to me and then figure out how to fit in the organization that must come. My house is a mess on a regular basis, my closets and pantry look like I'm hiding something and the laundry is a never ending race. Life is about those tricky balances, isn't it? Kudos to you for being sensitive to this part of you- I pray that the Holy Spirit will naturally balance this in you, so that it is not a struggle. Thanks for sharing. :)


leave a message after the beep.