Tuesday, September 25

let me tell you what i did yesterday with
my three hours with colben. the baby-doll
of my life.

brandt is deployed, but when i walked into
their little house, he was skyped on the computer
setting right where i could see him. a huge surprise.
such a blessing. and we tried to visit, but colben had
just awakened from his nap and ran into my arms with
two of his little fingers in his mouth. and when this baby
shows up, i just forget everyone and everything. i'm so
absorbed and charmed by this precious baby boy that
everything sort of becomes a blur. brandt and i spoke of
how much we love each other, and he checked out. i
somehow, inspite of all my flaws and failures, have the
four, most-loving sons.

well, jasmine has her first cousin living with her (i LOVE
this 17yr. old like i love jasmine), and i gave them a little
money to go have lunch somewhere, and a raley's grocery
store gift card that this amazing friend of mine sent. they
are going on a camping trip this week end with their church,
and i told them to buy whatever they needed at the store.
i felt like a millionaire being able to give them that gift card.
i carry that gift card around as if it is solid, pure, 24carat gold.

they headed out the door, colben and i waved good-bye.
and then, we began to play together. dragging toys out of
the toy box. opening his dresser drawers, and letting him
pull out his clothes. then, we put everything away, and i
started looking for his shoes. gone! i called jasmine, and
she laughed. the shoes were in her car, with her. so...i put
little shorts on him, went out the door with him on my hip,
and told him we were going to get ice cream. out of the house
and into the sunshine where people were watering their lawns
and motorcycles and buses were passing and dogs barking
behind fences. rite-aid was three blocks away, with only
gravel on the side of the road to walk on. i in my flats, and
an atm card in my pocket.

we waved at people and sang all his favorite little songs that
are ours and when i said, "oh, grandma loves you!" he leaned
over and kissed me on my lips. i didn't put him in his fancy
stroller because i couldn't talk to him and sing with him. so
i walked on little stones in the worst shoes imaginable, and
set him on my hip and headed, with focus, to treat him to ice

we got a bubble-gum cone...the worst colors possible...that
ran down his chin and onto his tummy (i had taken his shirt off)
and all over his hands. pink and blue everywhere, even in his
hair. we sat on a patch of grass in front of the store and with
every lick, he'd say "yummmmm". over and over. and now and
then he would hand it to me, to have a lick. people and cars
passed and there we sat, and i didn't care what anyone thought.
not one single bit. we went back into rite-aid's restroom so i
could wash him off, and headed home on the arduous walk in
the blistering sun. complete and joyful and filled.

glorifying Jesus! that is what i did all the time i was there,
and on the long drive home. glorifying the awesome and amazing
God who made me and gave will and me these four, treasured
sons, and now, colben. a baby doesn't care how old you are,
or if your make-up is right or if you are over-weight with a crooked
nose and pursed lips. all they see is the love.

that is how we are to love each other. NEVER to judge anyone,
but only see their hearts. and unconditionally, pour whatever we
have into them so they will feel whole and free and complete no
matter what imperfections and pain they have. this is how God loves
us. ALL of us. i GLORIFY Him, and ask Him, over and over,
to forgive me for every second i forget and see a flaw in someone
rather than just loving them exactly as they are.

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