Why in the World Did We Have a BABY?

The other day, I was thinking to myself randomly, “Why did we have a baby?” This is not a begrudging question towards my offspring at all, but an honest question to my own heart.

Why does anyone have kids these days? Because that’s what married people do? Because they think it will be fun??? Do we think it will be rewarding and exciting? It is those things sometimes, but most of the time being a parent is hard work. These little people are put into our care by God so that we, as mature adults, can teach them and disciple them into adulthood. What a daunting task that seems…

In some circles today, having kids is seen as a hindrance, a burden, or an obstacle to having the “dream life.” Having kids means taking away our adult freedom to do whatever we want whenever we want. To be perfectly honest, I had a hard time adjusting to that fact that I no longer fully controlled my life and schedule. My daughter trumps everything I plan because her needs come before mine. Talk about self-sacrifice. I had never had to do that before. I am at her beck and call 24-7. And most days I still struggle with some form of selfishness to want to do what I want. But I disagree completely that she is a hindrance, a burden, or obstacle. If anything, she is a greatest task God has given me. There could not be a more important job for me to do in this season, and I wrestle with that fact every day I am her mom.

So, why in the world did I have a baby? Well, I knew I always wanted to be a mom. The title and job sounded so beautiful, and I have a wonderful mom who made everything look so easy. I thought it sounded glorious to be a mom, and babies are just so darn cute! Maybe I had the illusion that parenting would be fun–that this cute little person that looks like me and my husband would just follow our lead all the time. She would go right along with our schedules, our agendas, and just keep up with us. But parenting doesn’t work that way. Your whole life changes in a mere second when this human being enters the world and needs you ALL THE TIME.

Sometimes I try to remember what Josh and I did before we had Corra. I think to myself, “What DID we do? Did we just sit around all the time? Did we have long conversations about something besides what our daughter ate for lunch, what her poop looked like today, and how many times we’ve read the same book to her?” I’m convinced we didn’t really do anything very important before we had her because I can’t remember most of it. She has changed our lives so much we can’t remember life before her, and I don’t want to imagine my life without her. I love her. I love her deeply. God put her in my life to show me how to love like Jesus. I think, wow–this is what unconditional love feels like. I love Corra even when she is not doing the right things, on our hardest days together. She is the sweetest and most precious girl in my eyes, just like God sees me as His daughter (and Corra also). Even though I will never love perfectly like Jesus did, I see God using my relationship with her to teach me to love others better than myself (Romans 12:10). That is HUGE.

I believe we had a baby because that’s what we felt God next step was for our little family. It is beautiful amidst the hard. God knows why we had a baby. To refine us. To grow us. To grow our family and glorify Him in the example we set in our relationships with one another. Are we perfect parents? No, and we never will be. But I pray that God’s grace will shine through in the way we rise our children. That people will see Jesus through us–through our mess, through our authenticity, and through the grace He shows us.

Grace to you and all your peoples tonight.

 

Hello Again

I don’t really want to count the number of times I have tried to start blogging again these last few years and utterly failed. Life tends to sweep us away like a big tidal wave, and it sometimes take quite some time to recover and cough up all the salt water we swallowed up in the wake of it all.

Well, I am back…hopefully for the long run this time. After buying a house, having a baby, and transitioning into motherhood, I should have a wealth of wisdom, right? Nope. Still trying to figure a lot of things out. I think writing will be a good way to process everything going on in life. Even if only my family and friends read this, they will at least feel like they are a part of our grace-full lives.

How many titles for my blog have I gone through? Again, too many time to count. I finally settled on the title “These Grace Full Days.” Not because I am graceful or our lives are graceful (they are anything but that), but because every day as a wife, mother, friend, and ultimately, a child of God, I am learning to live and accept God’s truly amazing grace.

I have known the song “Amazing Grace” practically whole life, just like other good church-going children growing up. But it has only been in the last few years that I have soaked in every word of that hymn. Becoming a wife four years ago taught me much about grace as my new husband continually extended grace to me as I navigated the waters as a new wife (let’s just say I didn’t really know what I was getting myself into). We both had to forgive and extend grace to one another each and every day as we learned to live with someone of the opposite sex every day.

Then last year I became a mother, and grace slapped me in the face (if you can even use grace in that context). My first year of motherhood was rough, and I fought a lot of the things motherhood brought my way. But God used some very difficult days to steer me in the right direction towards forgiving myself and learning to trust Him. I speculate that being Corra’s mom has taught me way more than I have taught her so far. While she was meeting developmental milestones, I was working on spiritual ones. When she was learning to sit up, I was learning to live selflessly by continuing to change her, feed her, and play with her even when I was totally exhausted. When she was learning to crawl, I was learning to be content with my sometimes boring, mundane days as a stay-at-home mom. While she was practicing pulling herself up and walking, God was teaching me to remain a loving and thoughtful wife even when I didn’t feel like it after a long day. As Corra started learning her first words, I was learning to hold my tongue when words of complaint and ungratefulness started to spill out of my mouth.

Every day, I am learning to lean on the loving arms of Jesus and to remember what He did for me on the cross. I want my daughter to know that we can do nothing without Him. I will write as a testament of my faith and a legacy to my daughter (and future children, hopefully) that I could not do anything without God’s grace. If my life amounts to nothing but living out this truth and pointing my kids to Jesus, it will have been a life well spent. No matter what the culture or society says. Some days I don’t always feel like that, but God will see me through.

My husband said something i won’t forget a few weeks back when I was beating myself up for getting frustrated with Corra. He said, “You are not a bad mom. This is a grace-filled house. You are not disappointing God.He loves you just as you are, and so do I.”

So come on over, you will be entering a grace-full home when you come to visit us. Bring your baggage, your struggles, and your sorrows. Jesus will be here waiting. On this blog or in our real home. Visit anytime. I will most likely have just made a fresh pot of coffee, tea, and some gooey cookies. Mmmmm…View More: http://camillemariephotography.pass.us/tiegsfamily

 

 

I Lift Up My Eyes

“I lift up my eyes to the mountains–where does my help come from?

My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.” 

Psalm 121:1-2

As I sat down to write this post, the verse above echoed in my head. This verse truly resonates with me during this season of life (and not just because I can literally lift my eyes up to the Rocky Mountains behind my house). I have every intention of continuing to write because I feel God gently nudging me in this direction. However, when I began this blog, I had no idea what life was going to throw at me this summer. I will not go into the details, but combine having a new baby with my husband’s stressful work schedule and I was bound to have some issues. But the circumstance that topped it all was finding out that my mom has cancer. In the course of three months, my mom has had more doctor appointments than I dare to count, multiple tests and biopsies, and has gone through major surgery on her lung to remove a tumor. It has been a crazy, scary, bring-you-to-your-knees kind of summer. For my mom, it has been that times ten. I have felt pulled in so many directions–trying to care for my baby girl, supporting my husband through a stressful work experience that has tested us both, and trying to support my mom from afar. I am tired. I am worn. I am weary. But I am also grateful.

Through it all, God has been faithful. He has been loving. He has been forgiving when I doubted and feared. He has been my help even when I had no words to cry out for help. There have been many days this summer where I have not felt like doing my devotions or reading my Bible. I have struggled spiritually, emotionally, and mentally. But God is still there. He was in the beautiful song that came on the radio. He was in the laughter my husband and I shaed when our daughter giggled for the first time. He was in the tears I have shed many times these past months. He was in the

You Rock My World

The Urban Dictionary defines the phrase “you rock my world” as follows: when someone/something makes life so much better. I’m not exactly sure when this phrase popped up into the vocabulary of chicks and dudes around the world, but I’m pretty sure I started encountering it in movies from the 90s and early 2000s. It was the new and cool way of saying, “I like you” or even “I love you.” I have always considered this phrase very cheesy and unsentimental. It can also be referenced to material things, like “that chocolate cake totally rocked my world!” It is shallow and unfeeling even when said with feeling.

Lately I feel that life is chasing me, and I am trying to run and stay ahead of it. I’m consistently afraid that it is going to catch up with me and completely run me over, leaving me in the dust. Ever since my daughter was born, I feel like I can’t keep up with all that I need or would like to get done. Every day my to-do list gets longer, and I get more and more tired. Corra has been changing so quickly, and trying to keep up is a whirlwind. This is where the phrase, “you rock my world” morphs into something much deeper.

Being a mom has forever changed me. I will never not be a mom again. My precious daughter has turned my world upside down. Nothing is as it was before. All of our close friends said that becoming parents would completely change our lives. They were more than right. It is by far the hardest job in the world, and there is NOTHING you can do to really prepare ahead of time. My daughter has completely “ROCKED MY WORLD.” She has shaken up my life until it no longer resembles the life I had before she was born.

A mom-friend and I were chatting the other day about the craziness of motherhood. We both agreed that becoming a mother is God’s way of showing us how much we need to become selfless. I have also heard this about marriage, but in marriage our spouse can help us, support us, and work with us as wives. They can give of themselves to us much more than a baby or toddler can give to us. There is often little or no return for our efforts until our children are older. I have realized more since having a baby how very selfish I am. For the last 25 years, I have lived for and taken care of me, myself, and I. This little being God trusted me with demands all my time, energy, and attention. I have learned in a very short amount of time that my life is not my own any longer. The funny thing is that it never was in the first place.

I believe God uses children to bring us even closer to Him. I have never had to rely on God more in my life. I do not always know what to do for my daughter. I don’t always FEEL like taking care of her after a night of disrupted sleep. I don’t always FEEL like holding her and playing with her when I have already done it several times over the past 10 hours. But I do anyways because I love her and she totally rocks my world! She makes my life richer, deeper in so many ways. Little does she know how much she has done for me already. I thank God for my sweet bundle of joy, spit-up, and poop.

Another person who totally rocks my world is my husband, Josh. When I met him, his quiet strength was mysterious and felt very comforting. After we married, his love shattered all my predetermined notions about love, marriage, and commitment. He has loved me like Jesus loves, with all the grace and affection that I ever hoped for in a marriage. His love has brought me to a better understanding of God’s love and grace. Josh does not always love me perfectly, and he is quick to admit it. Nevertheless, I don’t think I can thank God enough for giving me my handsomely bearded husband.

Then there is the Rock of my world, the Foundation of my life that will never crumble–Jesus Christ. I still don’t fully understand all that God has done for me through His Son. Our sinful, depraved minds cannot fully fathom what it means to be loved by the Father. I don’t think we will fully understand until we see Him in glory. I do not always lean on my Rock as I should. Thankfully motherhood is causing me to do this. I think Jim Gaffigan is a hilarious and witty comedian, but he said something very profound the other day about having lots of kids.

Comedian Jim Gaffigan has 5 children; here’s how he answers the “Why so many?!” question:

“Well, why not? I guess the reasons against having more children always seem uninspiring and superficial. What exactly am I missing out on? Money? A few more hours of sleep? A more peaceful meal? More hair? These are nothing compared to what I get from these five monsters who rule my life. I believe each of my five children has made me a better man. So I figure I only need another thirty-four kids to be a pretty decent guy.”

Well, I’m not so keen on thirty-four, but I do hope to have a “quiver full” (Psalm 127:4-5). However many God grants us is and will be a blessing. I feel so blessed just to have Corra in my life.

The Rock of my salvation has rocked my world through marriage and motherhood, and I certainly hope he continues to do so in all areas of my life.

Keeping my eyes wide open until next time…

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