One Pink Toothbrush

Welcome to One Pink Toothbrush, where I will be posting moments from my days as a mum and as a wife. Funny moments, messy moments, thoughtful moments, teary moments.... and hopefully using each moment to see what God might be saying.

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

A Confident Approach

The husband was out at a prayer meeting, and I had finally managed to get all the boys in their different beds at varying times. (After of course, the provision of drinks, stories, answers to life's questions, leaving lights on and getting the uniforms ready). I came downstairs and cleared up the aftermath of dinner, while putting the littlest one back in bed a couple of times. This was stretching the patience a little. I then literally fell into the sofa and 'crashed'. I felt like I couldn't do one more thing if I tried, and imagined the bath being run for me, and maybe someone even carrying me up to bed.

That's when I heard footsteps on the landing. There was nothing at all that a child needed so I just said up the stairs, "back in bed please". Whoever it was started the brave descent down the stairs. I actually wanted to cry. I wanted to be left alone. I had given out and served and reached the end of my capacity. "Go to bed" I said in a louder, more desperate tone. My five year old son, who gets growing pains occassionally, cried out "but mum my legs are sore". And what was my motherly, loving reaction? I shouted back at him, "I don't care! Get in your bed". He ran upstairs crying and I rang the husband crying. I told him through sobs how wrong I'd got it, and he said I needed to go and say sorry and ask God for help and grace once again!

So I headed upstairs with a hot water bottle and told my boy how wrong I had been and how sorry I was. I asked him for his forgiveness and reassured him that I did in fact care. He gave me a quivering lip cuddle and forgave me, in that way five year olds just do!

I headed back downstairs, and opened the Bible app on my phone. I read from Hebrews and came across this wonderful verse in Hebrews 4v16;
"Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need".

I received a text from the husband asking how it was going, and I replied that I was sheepishly approaching the throne of grace. The husband's reply was "lift your head, you are His beloved daughter and He is boldly taking strides toward you". This of course, made me cry even more. But I realised that I had only taken part of the verse seriously. I knew I could approach the throne of grace but I was doing so in guilt and shame with my head held low. The verse actually encourages me to draw near, in confidence. Why in confidence? Because of what Jesus had already done and dealt with by dying on the cross. All my sin, like shouting "I don't care" at my son, had already been punished at the cross. I just needed to say sorry and with my head held high, approach that wonderful throne to receive mercy and grace to help me in my time of need, so that's just what I did.

Friday, 14 September 2012

The Husband

Ten years ago, I walked down the aisle on my dad's arm, to a young fresh faced set of brothers. One was the best man;  my best friend from my youth  and one was his younger brother....the husband. And although he looked like he could have been a page boy rather than the groom, the adventure started there....

We got married in his last year of university and lived  in a cosy one bedroom flat, where we had our first boy 17 months later. At this point we lived on a small wage, as the husband volunteered for the church. A small wage and a huge provision from God. We learnt a lot that year about faith in a faithful God, and trusting Him wholeheartedly. Eight and a half years later, three more boys, a stint in emergency accommodation, a lot of old cars, bidding for our now nearly finished  house, leading a church in a racecourse, and being pregnant again is where we find ourselves today.

And today, I look back and I look forward with a grateful heart. The husband is and never has been perfect, he has never claimed to be. Not perfect, but definitely unique and definitely perfect for me. I don't know anyone else like him; he sings all of the time and often at me, whether I'm in the mood to hear it or not. He makes me laugh so much, not quite as much as I make him laugh, but that's the way it is and that's the way it shall forever be. He arranges meetings in his sleep and talks to me as if I should be awake. We have arrived at a church conference on the back of a pick up truck and we drove to Newday in a prop; yep that's the one God gave me!

He is a pioneer, an adventurer, a risk taker...dragging us all along for the ride. He's quicker than me to say sorry and quicker to forgive too. He serves and loves and cares for me, and for my boys and for those around him. He says things he just shouldn't say, he can't cook and he is known to eat frozen chocolate. 

He aims to love me in the same way Christ loves the church. It's a good aim, and I like it. Even when he misses, it's still a good aim to have. There have been definite times when we have both 'chosen to love' rather than it being about feelings, otherwise you just strangle each other. The husband's love for me, on the good days and the not so good days, points me back to Jesus. I know that Jesus alone is the one who is completely perfect, completely faithful, completely understanding and has completely laid His life down for me. 

So today on my tenth wedding anniversary, I want to thank for God His gift to me - the husband, my husband. I know of some not great husbands and some absent husbands. I know what a blessing it is to have one that not only sticks through thick and thin, but one who loves me, supports me, leads me and points me back to Jesus' unconditional husband love.

"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above..." James 1v17

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

It's a Celebration

For my birthday, I was given a box of Celebration chocolates by a friend of mine. Mostly a good range of chocolates, apart from the Milky Way ones which tend to get left at the bottom of the box, until the day when there's no other chocolate in the house so they'll have to do.

I put the box of chocolates in the middle of the lounge floor, next to some pens and paper and sat down. It didn't take long for curious little eyes and curious little little minds to engage in this sudden mysterious mummy act. One by one, they came and joined me on the lounge floor, even turning the tele off completely unprompted. "Is it a game?" "Are you gonna share them?" "Ooh, I like that one!" "What you doing mum?" came the questions, with some excited giggles and bottom wriggling.

I read them these verses; 
"Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things." 1 Thessalonians 5v11

"Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing." Philippians 4v8

I told them that we were going to encourage one another and build each other up, by focussing on whatever was lovely and admirable about each other. We were going to take turns to choose one person, write something true, encouraging and good about that person and celebrate who they were by giving them a chocolate. After the barrage of questions, which basically were different versions of "Do I get to eat some chocolate?", we began our little exercise in putting the bible into yummy practise. For about ten minutes, my boys honoured one another, the bible was taught and chocolate was eaten! A good day's work in Mummyville really.

Saturday, 8 September 2012


So only a couple of wonderings over the summer...I wonder why?! Could it be those long, sunny and rainy summer holidays? The weeks of having a million children in my house? (Well actually only four, but it felt like more). The endless questions; 'Are trees made of paper?', 'Where do babies come out?' The fun activities? The camping? Newday? The beaches? The picnics? The Olympics? And the brain numbing hours tuned into the Cbeebies channel? Yeah that might be why I haven't sat down to write for a little while. Some wonderings have definitely gone through my head, but they have not made it out the other end, and they have definitely not made it into the written form. They have instead stayed locked up in a place called 'Mummyville'.

'Mummyville' is a strange old habitat indeed. It's a bit like living in Dr Seuss world. The Cat in the Hat is a favourite Dr Seuss character in our house, and I relate to him. He uses lots of words and rhymes and ramblings all at once, whilst juggling many things including a fish in a bowl and he does it all while balancing on a ball. He also has Thing one and Thing Two constantly by his side. I feel his pain, and he does have a lot of fun along the way!

You can't live in 'Mummyville' all the time. You have to take a vacation from it, just for a few minutes at least, to keep your sanity. Most mums try to step out of 'Mummyville' for a minute or two, by locking themselves in the toilet. But even then, the vacation isn't guaranteed. Little people come knocking, or they're even more intrusive than that.

Longer moments holidaying from 'Mummyville' are recommended in order to serve us mums, and help us to go a little less insane. That is why the summer holidays are a dangerous time indeed, as these much needed moments are few and far between.
If mums live in this strange old habitat for too long, like a period of six weeks say, they become ever so tired and delusional and are in deep need of a thing

I heard a preach last week which covered resting; perfect, just what I needed. The guy said that not only do we need to rest, but that we need to recharge as well. I was all for hearing a preach about resting, and even quoting it to the husband in order to get a lie in, but the recharge bit I hadn't necessarily thought about.

He said we needed to be like David in 1Samuel 30, who "strengthened himself in the Lord, his God". It is true we need to"lie down in green pastures" like Psalm 23 says, but we also need God to "restore our souls". This really struck me and I prayed with a friend about it after our church service. She encouraged me the next day with an email recounting her crazy morning, where she wanted to crawl back into bed, but instead she chose to listen to some worship music on the way to work and she had felt her soul being restored.

So, I put the fish bowl down for a minute and got off of the ball. I stepped out of 'Mummyville' for a moment and opened the Bible. I allowed it to restore my soul and I put worship music on. Such wonderful truths I read, I felt blessed and plugged in and recharged before stepping back on the ball and picking up the fish bowl once more.