31 July 2011

Seasons and an Update on the Lues Family 2011

My 200th Blog Posting!  

Wow, Thank you to all my Blog friends for reading my ramblings and for taking the time to comment.  I really love to hear from you.

It is almost 18 months since I did an update on the Lues Family.  So much has happened since February last year.  When I have to describe it with a sentence, it would be: “I came to know a little more about the Lord’s Seasons.” talked about in Ecclesiastics 3:
Everything Has Its Time
 To everything there is a season,
      A time for every purpose under heaven: 
        A time to be born, 
And a time to die; 
      A time to plant, 
And a time to pluck what is planted; 
       A time to kill, 
And a time to heal; 
      A time to break down, 
And a time to build up; 
       A time to weep, 
And a time to laugh; 
      A time to mourn, 
And a time to dance; 
       A time to cast away stones, 
And a time to gather stones; 
      A time to embrace, 
And a time to refrain from embracing; 
       A time to gain, 
And a time to lose; 
      A time to keep, 
And a time to throw away; 
       A time to tear, 
And a time to sew; 
      A time to keep silence, 
And a time to speak; 
       A time to love, 
And a time to hate; 
      A time of war, 
And a time of peace
This is so what I’ve experienced the past 18 months.

We had the joy of a newborn baby;

the blessing of a Mauritius vacation

the challenge of homeschooling

the excitement of another Knysna family vacation;

the overwhelming emotions of an Andre Rieu concert; 

the welcoming surprise of another life in my womb, but then the devastating moment of learning that we will only have the privilege of knowing That Life, in the Life To Come.
Since we lost our Unborn Baby in March this year, I’m on a roller coaster of emotions.  Especially since I’m already in my 40’s and I’m sensing the Lord is gently pushing me into a new season. 

I thought I would be strong enough to take the winds that announces the turn of the season.  But the past few months, with the signs of a new season dawning on to me, I came to know I’m not ready to leave the season I’m in, neither am I prepared for the new season!
For years I struggled to understand, figure out and make peace with the season the Lord put me in.  Yes, it didn’t come naturally to me.  For years I had to renew my mind constantly to align myself with God’s purpose for my life.  

Being pregnant, having babies, surrendering my womb to the Lord, partaker in Life giving together with all the exhausting, exciting, overwhelming and joyful emotions that comes with it.  And so, just when I embraced the season I’m in, its all changing again!
I’m most probably entering a new season.  But what is my purpose in the next season?  

I was so busy trying to understand the purpose of the current season of Life-Giving-Fruit-Bearing, I never thought about the next season. Life is now, 

enjoying every moment of every day, though some days are more about surviving the day. Yesterday is gone, tomorrow still has to come.  God want us to live this season, not longing for seasons gone by, or living in an unreal world of tomorrow. But now, with a new tomorrow almost here, I’m kind of lost.  Why do life have to be so complicated? What will this new season be asking from me? What will be the sacrifices of this new season? Oh, I do know there will be fruit, much more than in the previous season, and I’m so looking forward to it, but pruning comes before fruit bearing. 

And pruning is painful, challenging, dying to self, little by little.  
And though I have no idea what the new season is all about, it is kind of exciting to have a glimpse on the new season.  Children entering young adult life.
CJ turns 17 in the next few days.  

Wow, how I enjoy this young man in my home.  I not only love this Firstborn of mine to bits, I also like him so much!  He reminds me of his Dad, and that is so comforting.  Strong, steady, calm and a Leader.  But there is also something of my Dad; his love for horses, his sense of humor with a bit of mischief.  And there is something of myself, perseverance.  

Over the past year, CJ experienced many ups and downs in the horses.  He took part in the 2010 Junior SA Show Jumping Championships, but his horse got an eye infection weeks before the championships. Days before they had to leave for Port Elizabeth, the Vet declared Mary unfit to take part. A dear friend offered her horse for CJ to take to the championships. CJ and XP was privileged to have one practice (yes, only one) before they left for the championships. 

But CJ’s calm and relaxed personality, together with his gifting with horses, provided him a great time and he earned very valuable experience.  They started planning for the 2011 Junior Show Jumping SA Championships, when the owner of Mary decide to withdraw her from show jumping and CJ was without a horse.  But the Lord is never caught off guard.  CJ’s previous trainer had two horses that needed a rider and CJ currently had his hands full riding two horses.  

The reality though was, that he had to start all over again by training a new horse. I sense that this is all about training in this season of his life, training his perseverance.  
He also got the once in a lifetime opportunity to be a Stunt Jumping Rider for a movie shoot. 

He enjoyed every moment of it with the vitality of a young teenage boy!  In his studies, he is diligent and purposeful, which make my work as his educator very satisfying.
Then there is the young lady who is developing in my home - Heidi-Mari who just turned 14.  

Oh, how gracious the Lord was the day He gave me this girl, who is truly in the transforming phase of being a lady.  She is my best friend and co-worker in the home. 

She is a true friend to her siblings, but also my right hand in looking after her siblings.  So much so that she and her brother CJ looked after them for 7 days with only a little adult support, while we were blessed with our Mauritius vacation.
Heidi-Mari started her own crafting blog last year, she became a Design Team Member for two Card Making Challenges and this month she started her own Baking Challenge.  She is making small steps towards walking in her calling of being a Virtuous Woman and that is so precious to witness.  
Josua my almost 11 year old is showing signs of growing in his own identity.  

My ‘Thinking-Out-Of-The-Box-Boy’ - he does not know of the existence of a box!  
Danika is walking in the footsteps of her sister, but with a strong personality of her own.  

She also started her own crafting blog a month ago and crafting evenings are now devoted to her.
And then there are my four, full of energy, 

keep me on my toes 

and alive little boys, Andrew, David, Daniel and Michael. 
Andrew just turned 6 and is surely leaving his toddler steps behind and has started walking the path of a young boy!  

How precious to witness that stage again, a time of developing his personality. Asking many questions, reasoning and thinking in his unique way.  
Little David, four years, is walking more and more in the calling of his name! 

He is an individualist, he needs nobody’s approval to do what he believe is right - a challenge in itself for his parents (!) - but so sensitive, with his sweet spirit.  
Daniel at three (tomorrow on the 1st), is only my older baby!  

Oh, he still needs me so much, though it is so easy to forget he needs me.  He’s still chubby like a baby, looks like a baby, experience life like a baby, and when he looks at me with his precious big baby face, everything in me crumble and I embrace my sweet little boy!
And then there is baby Michael. 

In only two months from now, he would not have been my baby anymore, that is if our precious unborn baby stayed in my womb.  But in the Lord’s wisdom He decided Michael will still be my baby at 18 months, unlike his three older brothers. They all had a younger sibling between the age of 16 and 20 months.  
And then the Lord gently reminds me of the second part of Ecclesiastics 3:
“The God-Given Task
What profit has the worker from that in which he labors? I have seen the God-given task with which the sons of men are to be occupied. He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end.
  I know that nothing is better for them than to rejoice, and to do good in their lives, and also that every man should eat and drink and enjoy the good of all his labor—it is the gift of God.
      I know that whatever God does,        It shall be forever.        Nothing can be added to it,        And nothing taken from it.        God does it, that men should fear before Him.        That which is has already been,        And what is to be has already been;        And God requires an account of what is past.”
I praise the Lord for little Michael who is still my baby, maybe my last, a very precious gift....  

One whom I can still cherish and hold, care for, while I don’t know when my current season will end and when the new season will dawn.  
But one thing I do know, in the new season, even more than the current, God will, through this broken vessel do things that will be forever.  

Every season is beautiful, every season has a God Given purpose if we keep eternity in our hearts.
And therefore I will rejoice and do good, and in due time, enjoy the good of the labor of  yet another God-given season. 
With love


"And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water,
that bringeth forth his fruit in his season;
his leaf also shall not wither;
and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper."
Ps 1:3


Wilma Gray said...

You are really an inspiration to me. Thank you for sharing your story with us and we all get encouragement through it. I wish I can have 8 kids! What a awesome blessing you have!

Lizelle said...

Thanks, Linni, it's always a blessing to read your blogs. May this new season be the most blessed yet!

Anonymous said...

Dankie vir die update. Sjoe jou mensies raak groot.

Dankie vir jou eerlike gesels oor moeilike seisoene.

Anonymous said...

You have a beautiful family Linnie.

Sonja said...

Julle het inderdaad n baie vol en besige jaar agter die rug!Sterkte met n nuwe seisoen! Jesus is met jou!

Anonymous said...

Oh Linnie, that is just so beautiful!! I almost don't know what to say! What precious children. I hope there is another precious little one for you but if there isn't I know God will bless you incredibly in this scary exciting new season - but I also so understand your pain. Thank you for your inspiring words. lots of love and a big hug! Karyn

Linnie said...

Thank you Wilma, Lizelle, Sonja and Karyn! Thank you for caring and taking the time to comment and encourage me.
Lots of love

Heidi de Jesus Ferreira said...

aah, your blog post made me cry! Really beautiful, you are raising a family of such godly character, I really wish I knew how you did it. I'd love a family as large, but at the mo only have 2 toddlers, and feel so unexperienced and so clueless as to how to raise them in the ways of God. I wish I could be your neighbour hehe :) Beautiful family, you really are blessed. Im sorry to hear about your mc, I also had one, it is heartbreaking, but God knows the bigger picture. We are also going to be homeschooling, what cirriculum do your children follow? Thanks for posting. x

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