Our little firecracker

“momma, can I pray for you?”
After a recent bout of sudden sickness that knocked me on my always moving feet, I started to really acknowledge the little prayer warrior that is growing up before my eyes…

Kyre Grace a.k.a. Gracie poo loves talking to Jesus. She many times will ask for double prayers at night time which isn’t motivated by the normal stall bedtime routine. Her heart genuinely longs to talk to Jesus, someone that she can’t physically see or touch yet when there is worship music on you can guarantee she is singing along, and better yet dancing to .

I often wonder what it must have been like for the girls as they grew in my tummy during my years in music ministry. Did the vibrations from my guitar rattle their developing ears, make their skinny little legs desire to move along to each note as it was being played for our Abba father? What was it like to all of a sudden experience loud music and hear their momma belt out songs of praise every Sunday?

My hope is that it all mattered, it impacted the way they try and meet the desire to worship our Savior.

Gracie loves to lay hands on you when praying, she asks Jesus to heal many people. She will start to pray as soon as the family is gathered around the table for our family meals. Good luck trying to take over family prayer time, she will always take the lead. I have even heard her ask the darkness to go away…

“momma, I want to go see…”

If you have made an impression on this little one’s heart, then she will ask to go and see you. If she knows that you are on the agenda to visit then she will run and squeal and pick out her best outfit and will look in the mirror and say “perfect”…humility at its finest.

There have been times when she will specifically ask for someone randomly and won’t relent. In the past, I didn’t put weight to the desires of the 3 yr old’s social time. Then an event took place a month ago. We had received some scary news that a family friend was in an accident. “Lucky” is a term most would use, “divine intervention” is one this family will use. The news came at night time, kids were already tucked in bed. I called Richard to the living room, broke the news and we stopped, held hands and prayed over this family. With heavy hearts we went to bed and hoped to hear some good news. Midmorning, Kyre out of nowhere asked to see her little friend, not knowing he was in the hospital. She has quite a few friends she gets to see regularly, but she only requested this one friend and didn’t like hearing no. Richard and I did not talk about the accident AT ALL around the kids that morning, I know that God had placed this child on her heart.

NOW, after not acting on this sooner, I am convicted to stop what I am doing when a request or question is made about someone by her and listen to see if her un-jaded discernment is kicking in.

“Ya’el, NO ma’am!”

I honestly questioned if Kyre was ever going to recover from being replaced. Out of all of my kids, I still don’t have one that needs me more then her. I honestly wondered if she was going to be able to love Ya’el and not hold her birth against her. It was soon apparent that we actually needed to watch Gracie around Ya’el because she thinks she is the second momma to her. Since the two of them share a room now that we bought our home, their friendship is growing. Many mornings we find Ya’el buried in books due to mommy or daddy not coming and getting them soon enough. When night time comes and we say goodnight, some nights Ya’el disagrees with lights out. You will hear Kyre try to comfort her and tell her “it’s ok baby” and then when that doesn’t work “Ya’el No ma’am”, just to find it quiet shortly after the firm command is given.

“momma, I am going to be four in Se-lattle”

We prepared Gracie too soon for this trip. After two recent trips that left her on the other-side of the island waving goodbye to momma, I assured her she would be going on the next trip. Well, I said that a few months ago and ANY mention of birthday or Seattle, ends with her telling EVERYONE she is going to be four in Se-lattle. Persistence runs deep in this child. Unlike her two other siblings that fall into the perfectionist category and struggle making mistakes like their momma, this one will keep working at something until she gets it right. Thank goodness she got this trait from her dad! Even though nothing special is taking place on our trip this week other than doctor appointments, she is just so excited she isn’t going to be left behind. Our plan is to take her to Yeti Yogurt so she can have Dairy free ice-cream and pick all her own toppings. That is going to be best part of this trip, seeing her eyes light up and be able to eat ice-cream that she can have!


“yes gracie”

“I love you”

Kyre’s passion is like a fire. God is teaching me this. I know that each one of my kids won’t respond the same way, techniques will have to vary with each of them, I can’t put them in a box. I will admit, I do this. I will find a tip, trick, process that is successful and then become completely frustrated when the other one doesn’t reciprocate. Well, Kyre can be described as a fire. Really. We were telling a pregnancy story to a friend, about my ability to handle spicy foods that I found bland, while my husband sat across the table sweating and drinking glasses of milk. Immediately our friend said with assurance “that was with Kyre wasn’t it”.
God wants me to see that the fire he has put inside her is tended in a way that makes sure the flames won’t erupt and consume the kindling needed to keep it going. He also doesn’t want me to disregard it and take momentary heat as a sign that I can just walk away and not look after it.

Does this make sense?

I was recently convicted during some quiet time in the house that I have been living this analogy with Kyre. I have said in past blogs that she is just like her daddy. I still stand by that, but I am having to humble myself and realize she is becoming more and more like me. We both crave solitude. It rejuvenates us, we come out of intentional quiet time and we have a bounce in our steps and can pour into those around us. One day after checking off the final thing on my list of to dos, I realized that Kyre and I had barely interacted that day and it was naptime. We had rushed the older ones off to school, I was powering through laundry, cleaning the house and working on worship. I felt a tug in my heart. Conviction laced with a little condemnation. It became apparent that here are two independent souls living under the same roof, spending our days in our own heads.

Richard will come home from lunch and hear the broadway show that is coming from the playroom as she acts out and sings whatever is going on in her head. I won’t forget the first time he heard this. He asked, “is it like this all the time?” I laughed and told him,” yup!”

I am still trying to figure out the right way to approach this new revelation. I know that I can’t walk away from her and just think the fire is going to keep burning without me adding to it. So now I am going to God and trusting the Holy Spirit to tell me when I am banking on a strength in her ability to not need me interacting 24/7. I need him to show me how to foster that strength, ability to rest in quiet, to not fill time and space with empty things, to not need others to get through the day. BUT I need to be careful that I am attainable to her when she needs interaction and not brush her aside either.

“she just hugged me”

I lose track of how many times I get told this. I have watched her walk over to another table at McDonalds (don’t judge, my dad loves treating the grandkids there) and hug the elderly person in the chair. Not a side hug with a pat on the back, a real hug. You know, arms wrapped tight and you will hear a grunt as she does it. Then her little angelic face lights up as she looks up and smiles at the stranger. Don’t get me wrong, this makes me uncomfortable at times, thankfully it has never been inappropriate. I watch the older lady melt in her arms, her expression changing from pure shock to utter joy… I want to believe a little healing takes place.
I watched her do this at a funeral, march right up and hug a family member in the middle of the service, at the exact moment they needed it. I was kindly assured that she was doing what God called her to do after talking to the person.

She wrapped around the legs of the VERY quiet and at times grumpy old neighbor we had for 6 yrs. We were saying a goodbye in a sense and after the initial shock wore off I watched his shoulders relax, a smile I have never seen grace his face and a gentle pat on her head.

November 12, 2011 seems like so long ago. I am not struggling with time passing, I have, since the moment of her conception been learning a lot about myself. Her life was a gift that I still can’t explain or give enough justice, even when I am sitting here writing about her. She entered the world on a cold winter day. I found peace as the snow began to fall and was able to bundle her up in a white bear bunting suit my dear friend had sent to welcome her to the world. We held her close, breathed in her brand new life smell. Giggled at her strawberry blonde hair and couldn’t believe God had snuck her in to our plans.

4 yrs ago, Kyrene Grace Harney entered the world, entered our hearts and entered into a place that needed a child that isn’t afraid to pray boldly, who leans into the ones God presses on her heart, who has looked past herself and has loved her siblings in ways that amaze us, who won’t neglect those in need of Jesus’s love and is willing to be the catalyst and more importantly who is continually teaching me what HIS grace means.

Happy birthday Gracie Poo, I praise God for the little lady you are becoming and for the sweet little soul you have been created to have. I pray that I will keep that fire burning brightly for our Abba father and that I will make sure I find ways to daily connect with you in a way your quiet little soul craves. 


Deep Waters

The cold crisp air, hand made fall decorations, my sad bald little maple tree in the front yard, northface fleece jacket and the insanely busy schedule all point to the fact that I am entering one of the busiest seasons. Since one of my many hats has the title worship leader, this time of year is when it is OK to listen to Christmas music as you plan for advent sunday services coming up soon. I do so only with my headphones and somewhere I can sing along quietly so I don’t disrupt the rest of the family that is trying to take one holiday at a time. We somehow managed to squeeze pumpkin carving in just 3 nights before Halloween. I was ready to scrap the whole event, but my husband, would not relent. Even though we disagree on the level of participation on said day, I am grateful we did it. I watched baby girl scoop all the guts back into bother’s pumpkin, watched tears stream down my perfectionist child and amazed my 3 yr old with my “talent” of drawing doc mcstuffin on her pumpkin and sat back and realized that I needed a moment, even if it was a rushed one, sitting on the floor with my family and soak up the joy that was written on the 5 yr olds face.

What is it with our fear or inability to be still?!? We know this is a problem of the ages, one that didn’t just happen in the last few generations, since one of the 10 commandments God gave to the Israelites was to “remember the sabbath and keep it holy”. God literally had to make a law that required his people to REST.

I am part a of a bible study group with a few women, there are 4 different churches represented each time we meet…Revival takes place each time hearts come together and break bread while digesting the daily bread God has given us. We are doing a study called “Beautiful Mess” based on the movie “Moms night out”. It is amazing, convicting, eye opening and many times relieving to know that I am not the only one with thoughts, feelings, questions and things that only God’s word can answer. One thing is has been pointing out is owning the gift of motherhood. I have found some great advice and tips to help get me to a place that is constantly leaning on the holy spirit to guide my days. Yet, I have been perplexed with the fact that some of those tips are hard to apply to a large family. I kind of laugh when I say that because I don’t feel like we are large, it feels normal, but when I look outside of us, I realize we are…

Cayden just started basketball, against his own wishes a few wks ago. The poor kid cannot handle change and is horrible at trying new things. After dragging him to the gym in the early mornings with me to a basketball camp, he decided he wasn’t going to play. The camp consists of kids all older then him. When he had to tryout for his division for the city league, I was able to witness first hand the skills he developed in those early mornings. Best part he ended up on a team with his buddies. 

Ezzy and Kyre are both in ballet and decided to tryout again this year for the nutcracker. Now making our Saturdays consists around chauffeuring little girls with tight buns, pink tights and personality soaring out of each twirl, jump or expressive move their body makes. 4 hours of ballet is on the schedule E.V.E.R.Y. single Saturday until December.

Richard is chomping at the bit to get out and hunt. Like every year he feels the pressure most alaskan men do, stock the freezer. Even if we don’t get a deer this year, we are hopeful we might get some geese or duck and atleast make some of his amazing jerky.  He  is spending his free time watching all the taxidermy videos he can fit in.   Even did his own squirrel mount recently…my only request is to leave brains out of my fridge and freezer 😒

I just recently got back from my second conference this year. It at times feels like the things God is calling me to each day are too much. I find myself overwhelmed. I am totally in retreat mode right now. My haven is my home. The place I can listen to worship music all day, grab my Bible and read a verse when my heart stumbles or just get lost in his presence as he meets me without all the demands and distractions I feel. I am having to train myself to not freak out when I see the clock ticking away and my to do list not budging. As my aunt told me last night in a text, its in the busiest seasons that allows God to do his work, IF I let him.

This season I find myself leading a bible study M-F with 14 other women. As I have mentioned in past blogs I am part of an amazing organization called “hellomornings”. Thanks to my former pastor’s DIL I found out about them. After a year and half of just being a participant I heard God loud and clear, after I removed the things plugging my ears, that it was time to step into a new role. It has absolutely added more work to my already full plate, but no matter what, I always find time in the day to study and be prepared each day. Help comes in the form of the holy spirit teaching me to let go of the things that don’t really matter. Did you know that God doesn’t determine my worth as a mother and wife in the estate of my home? I am slowly learning this. Help also comes in the form of a supportive spouse who sends me off to my room after a late dinner or when kids are tucked in bed and tells me he will be patiently waiting for me to finish and join him for the latest episode of “Arrow”.

It has been in the most recent study I am doing with hellomornings that I have been convicted on my obedience to the call, how I view Jesus and whether or not I am resting, better yet abiding in him. It is way too easy to fill my day up, naturally, since there are 6 of us with 11 loads of laundry to do a week, bread to be baked 2x a week, cookies baked every friday, feeding always hungry and growing bodies, (all in my new big kitchen!)

 hugs when life stinks, timeouts when mouths get the better of them, scripture to read when leading them to his truth that can be clouded by the world and little reminders that if the mate God designed me to be with isn’t my second priority in life, then things start to slip.

Where Richard and I stand with one another matters deeply not only to God, but to our home life, that is going to be soon opened up to others. This Sunday, Richard and I will be standing infront of our church body inviting people to come and join our small group. If you know about our family, you know the HUGE risk we are taking in doing this. Deep waters, deep deep waters is what God is calling us to. Recently the two times I read about Jesus walking on the water (1 peter and mark) I realized that Jesus used the storms to call the disciples into a place that revealed their innermost doubts and fears and gave them an opportunity to enact their faith. This is what is happening.

My heart can at times start to pound, I can begin to run through the lists of things that could come and enter our home, its in those moments that I can make a choice: to either worry or worship (thank you Worship Leader Conf ’15 for teaching me this gem).

Folks, do you realize that it is the first week of November?!

That means that Ezzy has been going to school since the last week of August, for the last 70 days. We have heard and watched kids get sick, cringed and almost cried in the quick release that happens when I say goodbye on the school playground. We have received phone calls, texts and fb msgs informing us sick kids were going to be going to school. Thanks to her amazing teacher, she delicately moves her around to try and limit contact with sick kids. My instinct was to pull her and wait with each notification of a sick kid going to school. God wouldn’t let me. I would run to him after failing and leaning on my own understanding, he was and is always there waiting to guide me. Each time God said “trust me”.

Trust me – trust me that I watch over her – trust me that I am her rock and fortress – trust me that I have written her days – trust me that I am calling you to a new season. One that will give him glory. 

Lately God has been showing me the areas that I have not acknowledged his hand moving in mine or my family’s lives. It can be found in the most awkward place, like the treadmill at the gym, where I know he is calling me to lift my hands in praise to him…yeah, I am that crazy person at the gym you want to avoid.

So right now I am choosing to worship him over my worries. I am loving how my “caught by jesus” study asks us to write down our lists each day and then hand them over to jesus and invite him to sit with us as we read the word. It is changing my outlook on life. You should try it, write out the things weighing you down and then asks Jesus to speak to those things. Then worship/praise/thank him for what he has done. Can’t find anything, ASK him and he will show you what he has been up too!!

As we enter this season with our family pulled in many different directions I am ever grateful He is driving the boat and we are all learning in our own ways to TRUST him. I am even more grateful that as I have been resting in my home, prioritizing my to do lists, that I as I make more time for him and less time for me, I walk away fulfilled and the things that have to get done manage to always get done. Not by my strength, by his alone.

So Jesus, I praise you for your protection over our little miracle that was the most perfect gift you gave us to learn about your love for us. I praise you for her health. I praise you for the deep waters of faith and trust you are calling the Harneys into, we thank you for the home you have blessed us with, one that allows for your vision of your bride growing and learning about your plans for our lives to happen in – Amen

Want to pray for us?
We could use prayers of protection as we start this new ministry, prayers that our marriage withstands the attacks that will come, prayers we keep asking him to oversee our to do lists and a selfish request, prayers that I find the time to train and have fun while training for my 3rd 1/2 marathon this year, hello phoenix, I am coming your way!!!!!