Tuesday, September 8, 2009

I can't, but He can

Our 8 year old daughter Alivia e-mailed me this Friday afternoon...

Hi mommy how was your day?
school is so boring
i cant do school
well bye mommy love you
when you see this email me back okay
love you !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

"I can't do school".
I know what she means. After spending a weekend away,this morning I feel like...

I can't do work
I can't do grocery shopping
I can't do bill paying
I can't do dinner
I can't do laundry
I can't do work again at 11pm

This past weekend we went to the Labor Day Family Camp at Timberlake Ranch Camps.
This camp is a familiar place for me as my sister and I grew up spending one week out of our summers at this camp. Lots of wonderful memories were made at TRC.
Our two oldest, Alyssa and Aaron have also been campers at Timberlake and both loved it.
And years ago my parents took my sister and I to the Family Camp.
We have a 30 year history with this Christian camp and the director is still the same guy.

Last year was the first time Gene and I took our family.
I loved the peace and quiet and the bonding that Aaron would never admit he did with Alivia. Being just the two of them, they had no choice but to bond with each other and they had a blast. This year we included our 16 month old granddaughter Amiyah and so it was a different peace and quiet. I kept telling her that I was so glad she came with us and she would take my face and give me kisses. The memories we all made together was so worth a little less quiet.

I don't have my pictures downloaded off the camera yet, but here are a few off my cell phone.

Here is her first canoe ride...

WHAT is happening?
I think I like this...

Going back to the e-mail I received from our daughter, it was hard to come back to reality last night.
Driving home I thought, I can't do real life. I want to live at Timberlake forever.

Last night, Alivia and I were coming home to different realities.
Her list of responsibilities are on a different level of what mine are, but to her they are still huge. She has to keep her room clean, empty the bathroom garbage, empty the dishwasher and go to school. I have to pay bills, work so we can pay the bills, dirty the dishes from cooking and go to the grocery store so we can eat.
Different things we can slap "I can't" in front of, but all things that God wants us both to rely fully on Him to get us through. I can't, but the truth is that He can.

When we feel like we just can't do life, we need to rely on God to get us through everyday.
I'm slowly learning that He wants me to be leaning on Him not just for the emergencies in my life, but the everyday tasks that are before me. The laundry, bills, work...

When I try to rely on my own strength my life looks a lot like that first picture of Amiyah in the canoe. She looked worried, confused and even scared. Then she realized that her uncle Aaron was behind her rowing, someone she trusts, and before the dock was out of sight, she was relaxed and she enjoyed the ride. By the time we rowed up to our cabin, she had her shoes off and her feet over the edge of the canoe, splashing the water.

The days we feel like we just can't do life, we must choose to trust Jesus no matter what and the ride of life becomes a lot smoother and we look much like the 2nd picture of Amiyah.
Full of pure joy.
When we try to do this life on our own and leave Jesus out of the picture we just become plain exhausted like Amiyah was at the end of her first day of camp.

Does Jesus have your trust today?

~Many Blessings~


Runner Mom said...

That picture is just too cute for words!! Great post, my sweet friend!!
Love ya,

Jennifer said...

How right you are. We can do all things with Him, by ourselves just doesn't work. Love the pictures. She is beautiful!


Yolanda said...

Hugs and much love,

Paula said...

Thank you Lelia. I've had a pretty rough 24 hours and this is just what I needed to read as I prepare to go to work. There were so many "I can't" moments in the lawt 24 hours that I cringe thinking about them now. Thank our God for the blessing of Jesus. I pray that I ably put all my trust in Him today. xoxo

2nd Cup of Coffee said...

When are you writing a book, Lelia??? Between hospice and your kids and being so in tune with the Spirit, you have so much to say.

Andrea said...

Amen...I do not do reality so well either...well not on my own. I must cling tightly to my Heavenly Father to make it through this life.
Blessings, andrea

Maggie said...

Thanks for stopping by. Lysa has such wonderful encouragement, doesn't she?! Sounds like you have your own special journey too. I hope to get more time to come back and read more. God bless!

HisPrincess said...

What an adorable little girl.

And a lovely encouraging message from you. Thanks for uplifting me today.

Danielle said...

Oh, how I just want to pinch those cheeks. And that smile... melt your heart.

I remember growing up all the camping and family fun we had... every cousin and aunt and uncle. A HUGE family thing. We don't do that anymore now that our kids are growing up. It's sad in some respects, yet in others, I don't know if I'd want my daughter around the family for that long of a time period. *sigh* But, we are making new family memories and friend/family memories.

Anonymous said...

I seem to forget that when I am weak, He is strong! :) Thanks for the reminder.

KelliGirl said...

I don't have a family tradition of family camp, but I love reading stories of those who do. Maybe if I read enough of them I can recreate my past!

I can totally relate to wanting to stay on the mountaintop, away from "real life." I felt that way after our mission trip this summer. The day-to-day is hard work.

As you said, thankfully we have Jesus...who can.

Just Sayin' said...

That is exactly what I needed to read today. Thank you for sharing.

Beth.. One Blessed Nana said...

Too precious.

Thankfully, Jesus is our strength. Without Him and without His power and might, we are just a canoe floating unmanned and with no destination.

You are a blessing to me!

Tracy said...

What a great post! I can SOOO relate. Love the visual images. Praise God for his strength at work within us.

I haven't visited in has been crazy and there's no end in sight, but wanted to say Hello and thank you for this Word today. I needed it.

Blessings my friend,

Susan said...


Oh, I just love the way you share the most awesome truths by your everyday experiences.

You see GOD everywhere. He's always speaking to you!

The pictures were precious, and I loved the one of her resting, just like Jesus wants us to do, ALWAYS!

Love you girlfriend♥

Laura said...

Oh--I know that feeling. Do I have to get back to real life? Can't I just stay on vacation forever?

You are right, girlie. I can't handle it alone (but if I had a cutie beside me, like the one in your pics, it just might be easier!)

Giving it all to Him.

Liz said...

As I read this, I am reminded of a devotional I read years and years ago, about coming down from those mountain top experiences (retreats, camps) so that we can work with Him with all our strength during the times that we are in the trenches! It's weekends like your Labor Day camp that HE gives to us so that we CAN - and only with His help.
Great timing for this post and thought as I leave for retreat tomorrow!
Love you! And Amiyah is becoming more and more beautiful!

Sande said...

Can I change my can't to a ..'I don't feel like it'?

Just got back from a few days away with my man. Amazing; Amazing; Amazing. Want to go back.

But I'm sure we would tire soon enough. And I"m sure if I trust Him to walk me through the "I don't feel like it", I will get into what even it was I didnt feel like in the first place.

Know Rome wasnt' built in a day but it definitely didn't build itself either so better get back into things

.... help me God!!

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

I've had a few "i can't" moments lately, but as you so beautifully painted here both in picture and in word, with God's help we can! Left to myself, I'm just a complete pile of mush and nothingness. With Jesus, I'm enabled to participate in the "divine nature" Peter talks about in 2nd Peter 1. God's enabling Spirit within is my strength from day to day. When I am tempted to offer my "i can'ts" I remember God's presence in me.

You're speaking some good truth here, friend. You're not alone on the road. Take that one to the spiritual bank!


Paula (SweetPea) said...

Aww...sweet. Love the pics of Amiyah as always she brings such a smile to my heart and face. So much to be learned from the little they trust and love so purely and freely.

I love how you relate your responsibilities with Alivia's...yes on different levels but the same degree of "hugeness" for the person.

I can do all things through Christ Jesus who strengthens me. Phil. 4:13.

Only through power of Jesus and grace of God can we accomplish anything at all. Only.
So glad you had such a restful and peaceful weekend. Sounds wonderful. Love the image of Amiyah letting go, trusting, and dangling those cute feetsies of hers.
Love ya.

Jenny said...

I'm with you on the I can' that a word?? Either way, it's fun to look back and be excited about how the I can't turned into I did because of Jesus!