We have moved 13 times in the past 15 years. Each time, we have learned more about ourselves and more about the Lord. We have learned that each time we need to put down roots as if we'll be there forever while remaining open to God's leading. Wherever we go, whatever we do, we're striving to Bloom Where We're Planted.
Sometimes a person just needs to make a change. It might be a new hair color, a new paint color, or even a new address. It's awesome to Bloom Where You're Planted, but sometimes you need a new pot or garden in which to grow.
To that end, I'm starting a new blog. It's something I've been mulling over for a while now, and I'm finally ready to take the plunge. While I strongly considered just sprucing up this one and adding to it, I felt like it was just time for a change. While some of the topics will be the same, I want to go in a new direction.
I expect it will go live in the next few days - maybe even tomorrow - when I finally hit "publish" on my first post. It's oddly nerve-wracking!
I appreciate your loyalty over the past few years in reading my (sometime sporadic) posts. Thank you! I hope you'll join me at my new place: http://www.laurabaggett.com. Snazzy, huh? :) If you go there now, you won't see much of anything, but I wanted to let you know it was coming. I will plan to put links to the first few posts here.
Today is my son's 8th birthday. This makes today also my 8th birthday since I got a new identity that day: Mama.
Over the past few days, I've been thinking about those events surrounding his birth and the emotions surrounding them - fear, anticipation, uncertainty, joy. This morning, a new thought occurred to me.
During Nathan's birth, I was injured pretty badly. I will spare you the details (and myself the embarrassment), but let's put it this way: while new Moms are usually out of bed (either by choice or by insistence of the nurse) not long after the birth, I was still in the bed, hooked up to most everything, two days later. What happened wasn't anyone's fault, and thankfully Nathan wasn't hurt in any way. It was just one of those things.
The recovery wasn't fun, and while I have long-since healed, I still deal with some consequences from time to time. But you know what? He was worth it. Absolutely worth it. If I had it to do all over again, I'd - well, I'd have a C-section. :-) If that wasn't possible, though, I'd go through it all again without question.
Every now and then, most often when I'm thinking about my children, it's as though God clears His throat to say, "I've been trying to tell you this!" It happened again this morning. I understood more clearly than I have in a long time that Jesus, if given the choice, would do it all over again for me, without question. Yes, the pain He endured on Good Friday was indescribable (not even in the same universe as labor pain), but He has no regrets. He thinks I was worth it. Absolutely worth it. Ungrateful, wretched sinner me.
He feels that way about you, too.
"But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." ~Romans 5:8 (NASB)
I love you, too, Nathan. Thank You, Jesus, for the unspeakable gifts of salvation and motherhood.
Twenty years ago today, I was a 20-year-old co-ed at Auburn University. I had a small group of close friends including the two pictured with me below, was active in my church, and was just generally progressing through my courses. The guy I thought was going to follow me to Auburn didn't. A couple of crushes from my freshman year had come to nothing. And while the Summer after my freshman year turned out to be the unexpected Summer of Two Boyfriends, neither one had proven to be long-term.
This was during the time when Evangelism Explosion was all the rage in Baptist churches, and Lakeview Baptist in Auburn was no different. I had attended the orientation meeting for EE a few months prior but felt that the Lord was not leading me in that direction (which was pretty surprising at the time). However, in January the classes started up again and, with a lot less on my plate for that term, I sensed the All Clear to go ahead with the training.
I showed up to the meeting all alone. While there, I learned that everyone would be assigned to a team of three people. My name was called out by the leader. "Laura, you'll be with Russ and David." I had no idea who he was talking about, so I went around the room asking, "Are you Russ? Are you David?" Eventually, I found them. (David is on the left, Russ is on the right.)
After some brief introductions, the three of us headed out to Russ's car. He had already been trained as a leader in EE, so David and I were about to get some on-the-job training in visiting some students who had recently attended a service at Lakeview. Before heading out, Russ prayed.
Now, I have to tell you that I am not one of those people who go around saying "God told me this" or "God told me that." Gentle Spirit nudges, yes. But an actual voice, no. This was different. While Russ was praying, I heard - as clear as a bell - "Laura, I'd like you to meet your One" (because, like all good church girls, I was looking for The One, and God, being omniscient, knew the terminology that I used). I actually opened my eyes to see if anyone else had heard what I heard. Nope, just me.
Now, there were two guys in the car with me, but it didn't occur to me to ask God which One He was talking about. I naturally assumed that He must mean the one praying. (To date, Russ is the most awesome pray-er I know.) So when I got back to my dorm room, I told my roommate, the girls pictured above, and my mother (on the phone), that I had met my One. "What's his name?" they asked. "Russ Lynch!" I answered.
Note: my married name is Laura Baggett, not Laura Lynch. (I've always thought the double L thing would be fun. Also, I once had a crush on someone almost exclusively because of his last name. Seriously, don't you love the sound of Laura Heatherly?? But I digress....)
I've written more about The Rest of the Story here and here, if you're interested. Also, I never did complete that story, but I'll do that if anyone seems to care. It's really a pretty unique love story involving tragedy, triumph, and a little black dress.
So, as my 7-year-old son put it last night, today is the 20th Anniversary of us Being Met. I've been reminded by my husband on several occasions that I said, more than once, "Please don't let me marry that boring David Baggett!" But these past 20 years - including 15 years of marriage - have been anything but boring. I love you, David, and I'm so grateful that God assigned me to your team, both then and now.