"You know that quote, 'She believed she could she did?' I learned this quote from a different end: “She believed she couldn’t, so God did.” -Lara Casey
I had the honor of chatting with Lara Casey over the phone. Lara is a mama to virtual twins (6 months apart) who are both under two and a sweet 5 year old. She is HarperCollin's best selling author of Make It Happen: Surrender Your Fear. Take the Leap. Live On Purpose. She loves to garden and is a work at/from home mom.
I read Lara's Make It Happen in January 2015 as we began our adoption journey. She touched briefly on a miscarriage they walked through and something in my gut told me to "prepare" for our own...which happened two months later. I also remember her sharing a bit about adopting while pregnant and hoping our story would unfold into a crazy type of beauty too.
So here we are.
As a full time working/work at home mom, I was dying to know how Lara manages to "get it all done." I asked her if she had a schedule or routine fitting her family's style. They do!
They wake up at...ready? FIVE A.M. to start the day. Everyone has breakfast together.
Lara exercises for an hour, whether a stroller-walk or jogging up and down the stairs, it gets done. Her caregiver arrives around 8 am and helps prepare for preschool. Everyone is off and in their spaces by 9 am!
She works in her home office until about 6 pm. "Throughout the day I am so grateful to work from home: I get to hang out, have lunch with the kids, help with challenges."
Lara's favorite way to spend time with her kids is on the floor, with their toys, watching them learn and interact, "Nothing structured or scheduled, just dancing around."
I asked Lara, "What truths do you hold onto for strength and encouragement, especially when everything feels out of control?"
"Scripture through the day. It all goes back to remembering in conflict or challenging situations, I am cultivating something eternal with the kids, along side the Lord. At times I mess up; I then have an opportunity to talk and pray through that with the kids. Even in the small things, we are cultivating something eternal and big, with God."
Lara shared with me the most freeing decision and boundary she has made was to work from home. "There is nothing emergent about my work. Everything can wait if needed, when it comes to the needs of my kids. I am respectful of my staff and commitments, but I know I am cultivating something that matters in these kids. That’s important. Working from home gives me the ability to put work on hold and tend to their needs."
I asked her about feeling heavy with self-given expectations and obligations: how do you respond and what do you turn to?
Lara: "Its funny because I have been feeling that today. I have been asking, "Lord why am I feeling this way? What do you want me to grasp onto?" I think I have to look back to the bigger picture: my life is to be a gospel song. It is supposed to point back to him. In my mess, not my perfection. I cling to that: the big picture. We get so narrowly focused on getting things done, on what’s happening, on circumstances. I have to step back and think “whats going to matter” when I see God’s face."
Lara's next book, Cultivate, is releasing June 27th. I asked her to share with me a bit about it:
"I wrote this book about imperfect progress.
"Cultivating little by little with the Lord instead of something giant happening overnight. I experienced this very thing as I wrote the book. It took me over 2 years to finish the book, I failed to meet deadlines, we had two babies.
"You know that quote, 'She believed she could so she did?' I learned this quote from a different end: “She believed she couldn’t, so God did.”
"I actually can’t do anything truly good without Him.
"In Cultivate, I touch on our journey through our adoption, through loss of miscarriage, and all sorts of different seasons.
"I continue to find that the Lord is never done refining us.
"It is about being on the path, not about being finished. I hope it encourages a lot of people to not buy into all the lies we believe.
"A lot of this book has a lot to do with seasons of waiting, how these are seasons of ripening. He loves us in what feels hard, [sometimes more intimately] than in what seems easy.
"I look back on our season of miscarriage and see how much He refined in me in the fire. He grew a community around us, a lot of it was grown through grief, and we needed that community while in adoption process. It is easy to say 'He is not with me' when in the thick of it. But blessed are those who mourn, we will meet Him there."
In celebration of what God is doing in and through Lara, Harper Collins has agreed to give away a copy of BOTH her books, Make It Happen and Cultivate!
ENTERING IS SIMPLE:
All you have to do is comment on this blog post. It can be as simple as, "pick me!"
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Giveaway ends June 14th and will be responded to in the comments below.