Monday, September 13, 2010

Child-Like Faith

Lately I have been so encouraged by how soft Elijah’s heart has been towards the Lord, and also how genuine his faith appears to be. While I’m hesitant to tell him I think he’s “saved” or to encourage him to pray a prayer, I think that to the extent that a four year old can have faith- he has it.

Lately when he disobeys, when we send him to the bathroom to await discipline, he prays during that time (audibly where I can hear), “God, please help me to obey!”

Yesterday, when Nathan was giving each kid an obedience challenge for the day, he asked Elijah to really work on not arguing or answering us with “But…!” After Bible time, Elijah said, “When I get to Heaven, God will take away all my buts! And all my other sins!”

Today during Bible time, Nathan was working through the Old Testament, and went through the 10 Commandments with the kids. He explained stealing (which the kids have had a bit of a problem with. If they like a toy from the church nursery, for example, they just put it on their pocket and take it home.) Last week while we were at the Belches, Elijah really liked a certain plastic toy soldier, and brought it home. I explained that it was stealing, but then he lost it, so we took one of our soldiers over to their house in exchange. After Bible time today, Elijah exclaimed , “I’m sooo sorry that I took that soldier from Buelo and Buelas house! I shouldn’t have done that!” It was so encouraging to see him apply scripture and feel conviction over sin!

A few minutes ago, while watching the movie "Prince of Egypt," Elijah turned to Levi and said, “Levi, Moses doesn’t want to be a king anymore, he wants to be a new man, who God likes!”

On a lighter (and maybe t.m.i.) note, Elijah is in the habit of describing his poops every time he finishes. There are turtles and sticks and rocks, and wet and dry, etc. Yesterday after finishing his business, he cried out, “HEY! This poop is like Jesus walking on the water!” (it was a floater).

Oh how I long to see all of our kids walking by faith and letting Christ be their King. I'm so thankful for encouraging glimpses of seeds taking root in our eldest's heart!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Cactus Balls

Nathan took the three kids on a hike behind the house to retrieve the sundry of items that had fallen (eh hem... been thrown) over our wall. Namely, we needed to fetch Levi's precious Nalgene water cup that came from "across the ocean" and is irreplaceable here.

Eliana found what looked like a fun little ping-pong ball, but in reality was a cactus ball that appeared harmless, but upon further examination (or grasping), appeared to have hundreds of nearly invisible, hair-like thorns that embedded themselves into poor Eliana's hands and fingers. When she got home, I had the fun task of using tweezers and duct tape to extract the dozens of little pokers. Many of the thorns transferred themselves into my fingers, Nathan's arms and chest (from carrying her home).

Lesson learned... nature doesn't produce any safe ping-pong balls.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

So, how have we been doing?

So, a few people have asked how we've been doing lately, and I realized I haven't done any blog updates for several weeks, so I thought I'd post a somewhat lengthy update on how how each of our Thiry Clan are doing...

The kids are doing well. Elijah is super soft spiritually, which is a huge encouragement to my heart. I know he's very much a people pleaser, so I'm not at all encouraging him to "pray a prayer" or anything, but we talk a lot about making Jesus his King and obeying Him each day in each circumstance. He loves to pray! I catch him praying throughout the day on his own... praying that Jesus will help him catch a lizard, praying that Jesus would help Levi obey so he won't get thrown into the lake of fire... etc. Every time he sees the sunset, he jumps up and down and exclaims that Jesus is coming back. He has such a strong child-like faith. He has this cool evangecube keychain that unfolds to the different pictures of the gospel. He loves to wear it clipped to his pocket every day, and he's even shared with some strangers using it!  Elijah continues to miss his best friend, Sophie, and talks about her quite a bit. I'm hoping their Spanish improves soon so he can start relating to kids on a different level than just running around screaming insanely. (screaming and insanity seem to transcend language barriers.)

Levi is getting a bit softer spiritually. He's at least more responsive to me, more affectionate, and more teachable. He still has a strong independent streak, but I'm learning better how to interact with his personality, and seeing how my response to him greatly affects how he then responds to me. He's a very dear boy who is brave, daring, independent, and yet loves necklaces, bracelets, shoes and "looking good." I know the day is coming when he'll be 14 and starts begging for an earring! He has become quite a bully to Eliana, so we're working on that. Both boys are SUPER excited to have a new brother soon and fight over who will be his best friend. Levi is our most grateful kid. He sincerely thanks us for nice things he receives. Yesterday he got his first black eye as a result of a run in with a slide... or so I've been told.

Eliana is as gorgeous as ever on the outside, but her insides are showing some very ugly corners. She has the most hideous angry temper. If one small thing isn't done "her way." She screams and pitches a most horrendous fit. For example, today, she wanted to sit on the potty and try to go pee and wipe herself. Nathan let her try for 5 minutes or so (she's never actually gone potty yet), but then told her to be all done as he had other things to do. She got so angry that she was flailing, hitting, screaming, and writhing. I'm not talking about a sad, "oh I'm sooo disappointed" cry. I'm talking about an, "if I were bigger and had a weapon, you'd all be dead..." scream... a rage from the inner depths. We discipline, teach, hug, repeat over and over. Honestly, I some times think she has a medical condition that makes her not feel much pain. Several people have commented at how she can fall, take a hit, receive very firm discipline on the backside and seem unaffected. I'm not sure if she really can't feel it or if her will overcomes her pain. By faith, we're just trying to be obedient to what God's word says about discipline and trusting that in time, we'll see fruit in her life. You could pray for patience and a genuine love for her when she's being unlovable. Apart from that, she's obsessed with pretty things- purses, bracelets, shoes, lotion--- oh vanity, here we come! She abhors anything that looks like it may be a toy, and much prefers to scour the house for anything that looks inappropriate for her. It cannot be soft or made of plastic. It's best if it's breakable, stains, or disgusting. On the bright side, she's our best eater and eats literally whatever is in front of her. She knows I have a baby in my tummy, and loves to see babies, but I have a feeling she'll be Lucas' greatest danger. I think she'll be quick to poke, pinch, hit, pick up, and feed Lucas at every opportunity. I'm so convinced of this, that we're actually contemplating moving his crib into the boys room and letting Eliana have her own room. Eliana also continues to love Nathan more than life itself. As much as I was looking forward to having a daughter to follow me around and to teach how to be a godly young lady, I'm thankful she has a daddy who is such a good role model of what to look for in a future husband and leader.

Nathan continues to work hard, by serving us as a family, taking on responsibilities at church, studying Spanish, working on getting his license, and loving on the lost guys in our area. He is truly a great man. We were blessed on Saturday to celebrate our 6th wedding anniversary together.

I am as big as a house, tired, cranky, etc, etc. I'm thankful for God's grace in the daily tasks, and that He gives me a love for my kids each day. I'm getting excited to start homeschooling Elijah this year, but I'm also torn as I'd love for him to be able to go to a GOOD public school here to learn Spanish and make friends. Continue praying for God's wisdom in that arena. I'm pretty tired these days. After the intestinal illness went away that had me in the hospital for two days, we got hit with a horrible cold/flu bug that's lasted 5 or so days. Nathan and I have it the worst-- super tired, achy, tons of sinus congestion... now it's in my chest, but at least I can breathe, and so sleep at night a bit better.

In case you don't think I qualify as being as large as a house, this pic is now a month old.

We just ended 10 weeks of constant house guests, which was a blessing but also taxing as a family. Nathan's mom, Trina, comes in 11 days, for which we are thankful, as she loves the kids as her own and works so hard to serve us and help around the house.

Our van is in it's 11th week in the shop. I hardly remember what it looks like. Lord willing, we'll get it back before Trina or Lucas arrives, otherwise, we'll need a rental to be able to haul more than the 5 we already have. Everyone asks when Lucas will arrive, and of course, I have no idea... but if I had to guess, I'd say around the 20th of September. I'll gladly take votes though. The winner can come fly here to see us (travel expenses not included :-)

Our Kia (aka, K.illed I.n A.ction)
This morning, 2 ladies from church came over to deep clean my kitchen and living room. It was humbling, but a blessing too. They cleaned parts I didn't even know existed! Now I don't want to ever cook again so my kitchen stays this shiny.