Tuesday, April 30, 2013

KEEP Encouraging One Another


The Holy Spirit has placed it on my heart to re-post this. "Praiseworthy Mommy" posted on Sunday has the same message. God bless and I hope we reach the people God is leading us to. 

Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. - 1 Thessalonians 5:11 (NLT)


We all need to be encouraged at one time or another. Even when things seem to being going great. We've all answered the ever common "fine" when asked, "How are you?" even when it's not totally true.

Take this time and ask God to lay at least 3 women on your heart to encourage within the next 3 weeks. You can encourage one per week or all three today if you want. 

Here are some ways to encourage her:

1 - Mail a card or a note.
2 - Go for a visit.
3 - Take her to lunch or for coffee.
4 - Compliment her.
5 - Ask her for a prayer request.
6 - Give her a hug.
7 - Buy her a gift.
8 - Send her a song. (youtube link)
9 - Call her.
10 -  Email or Text her.

But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called "Today," so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness. Hebrews 3:13 (NIV)

Father, I pray for the disheartened and lonely. For those who feel alone even when surrounded by people. Lord, let her know that You hear her prayers. Comfort her with Your loving embrace. Remind her of Your everlasting love. Use us Lord, to encourage our sisters in the faith. We love You and we thank You for new mercies everyday, in Jesus' name, Amen.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Rest


The LORD replied, "My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest."  Exodus 33:14

Escape. Run away. Blow this joint. It’s how I’ve been feeling lately. Outnumbered. Tired. At my breaking point. Add to that external pressures and trials galore…that has been my life lately.

However, in the midst of my storm, I have sensed Jesus on the boat with me…sleeping. Instead of waking him up and screaming, “Do you even care that I am drowning?” I want what HE has…REST for my soul.
I don’t want to fear what is or what is to come. I want to know that God is on the throne. He knows I am being rocked about, and he is right there with me. No matter how I feel, I AM NOT GOING TO DROWN.

God’s still, small voice has been sending me little messages of hope through my trials: the prayers of family and friends, a timely song on the radio, etc. Yet, this past weekend as I got away with my husband to go to a discipleship conference (another God-story I will be sure to express later), I felt like God was talking to me in waves! Experiencing a flood of emotions, I cried. God was speaking to me in so many ways. I knew that he had done more than heard my cry. He was in the boat with me.

One of the many things that God spoke to my heart about is the importance of scheduling REST into my day, my week. I need to be intentional to take the time to take care of myself. Some days I feel like I need to be an octopus mom with eight arms to be able to tend to my three kids, 5 and under. Yet, I don’t think I am going to get that…nor do I really want it. What I really need is a head start on them—a little bit of “rest” at the beginning of my day before they wake up.

It’s a funny thing that rest would require sacrifice on my part, but I need to wake up earlier than them and spend time with the Lord. I do not like having my kids wake me up. I feel like I can barely get up and go potty (sorry…TMI) before they start with their litany of requests. They wake up on full throttle—ready to take on the day with my help. I don’t! I need time with my heavenly Father before I can joyfully spend time with them. I need to be filled up with HIS peace, love, and joy so that I can pour that same peace, love, and joy on my kids.

Jesus modeled this thing called rest so many times in scripture. He didn’t run away and escape. He spent quality time with his Father, got filled up with HIS spirit, and was ready to serve again. I am not smarter that Jesus. If he needed time with his heavenly Father, then so do I.

You see, there is a difference between escaping and resting. When I escape, I am purely selfish. I am running from problems. I usually come back feeling guilty, and my problems are still waiting for me. However, when I plan rest: time with the Father and time to go out with my hubby or friends, I feel refreshed. God wants us to have a healthy rhythm of work and rest. We need to abide in him, so that he can send us out…“out” to our coworkers, our kids, our hubby, our mom friends, to the lost.

Mom, let’s be intentional about this life we have been given. Let’s schedule our rest with the Father. Let’s schedule some time with our hubby, for ourselves. Let’s create some healthy rhythms of work and rest so we can pour our lives out instead of being drained out. Will you join me?

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

Prayer:

Heavenly Father,
Your love for us is great, and all your ways prove true. You created the world in six days, and then you rested. Your son Jesus modeled a perfect life for us. He would go off to the mountainside and pray. He had genuinely relationship with you. Help us do the same. Help us to find our rest in you, to abide in you. Fill us with your love, your joy, your peace, your kindness, your faithfulness, your goodness, your gentleness, your self-control…so that when the trials of this life come, we will not be shaken. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Praiseworthy Mommy!

 Do not let any unwholesome talk
 come out of your mouths,
 but only what is helpful for
 building others up 
according to their needs, 
that it may benefit
 those who listen. 
- Ephesians 4:29


It's so easy to criticize. We look at another mom and question why she does what she does. We judge and share how we would do it differently and tell of a better approach. I have also found that many times we hold back the praise for those moms we see doing something PRAISEWORTHY. As our eyes notice a mom shining bright in her parenting skills we may smile but rarely do we encourage them with our lips. 


A few weeks ago my sister came to visit, from NC, with my little seven month old nephew. We had a sweet time of catching up and my boys LOVE spending time with their cousin.  As her week visit progressed, it seemed as if my boys were misbehaving and out of control. I was disappointed that I was having such a hard time with my kids. I worried my sister thought I was not parenting well. After all, we as moms, are our worst critic, right?

After the visit with us, my sister left and traveled to stay at another mom's home, who had little ones like me as well. She called me within a day of staying there and praised me for the mom I am and how well behaved my kids were. I was shocked and blessed all at the same time. My sister chose to bless my heart with words of praise, about my parenting and the behavior of my boys, which allowed me to be so encouraged.  



Why don't we do that more often? When we see a mom doing good in her parenting skills lets remember to praise her for the fruit of her labor. Moms need that. Being a mom is exhausting and many times we just need a breath of fresh air, from the lips of another. It is those words of edification that spur us on to greater work. 

Take time right now. Stop reading. Pray and ask the Lord to reveal a mom who needs encouragement. Call, text, or email that mom you think is impacting the next generation for Christ in a positive way. Allow your words to be that cold glass of water. Refresh. Revive. Watch Him use your words to uplift another! 

"...those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed." 
- Proverbs 11:25

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Preparation is KEY to Preventing CHAOS


Isaiah 14:24 
The LORD Almighty has sworn, "Surely, as I have planned, so it will be, and as I have purposed, so it will stand."


With only a few weeks away from meeting the newest Seawell baby (my due date is May 15) we are getting super excited. My "nesting" is definitely in definitely in full throttle and I am trying, somewhat, to get things in order for the "chaos" that follows weeks after having a newborn :) 

I have gone to Target and gotten some much needed new blankets and bought a baby carrier as well. But as I prepare for the newest adventure in my life I am reminded of this one undeniable truth....."PREPARATION is KEY to PREVENTING CHAOS"! True in life but highlighted especially in parenting decision making as well. 

Case in point: 
Over the past couple of weeks I strategically sought to find a solution to my boys struggling with self-control in the car rides. 
Each day we go to a park as an outlet to the high energy my boys have :) Afterwards, on most days, we will go to the store for those items I forgot on the "list" or just to peruse in the cool air (since I am 37 weeks pregnant and HOT all the time!). It seemed as if each time our seat belts were buckled that their hands were glued to each other- trying to frustrated and irritate. One would instigate and the other jump in to retaliate. SO exhausting and dangerous as I would turn around, multiple times in our drive, to discipline the kids.

But the Lord gave me a great idea to help with this problem and goes along with our theme....
"PREPARATION is KEY to PREVENTING CHAOS"
SO....
each day before heading out to the park or store, I prepare a clipboard with school work, that reviews the previous days' lesson, and have my older son work on that in the car ride on our drive. This prevents our chaos tons! 

There are 10 words he must write out and a math sheet he must do. If he is diligent and does his work then he can play once at the park. If not, then he must finish at the park bench until done. This takes preparation on my part to get the clipboard ready before our drive but it is well worth it for the peace it provides.

My other son is young and still learning but as he has watched his older brother work hard he too wants to do school work in the car, so we are working on getting some workbooks for his age (3) as well :) 

What is that "thing" that the Lord is asking you to prepare for so that the chaos can lessen?


Proverbs 21:5 
The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty.

Friday, April 26, 2013

My Girl...Michelle...


Once again, stolen from my daughters blog, "Delighted!"

on happiness

APRIL 17, 2013
05cbab20708c7e159b6086119270293dimage found here
I have been thinking about God’s will a lot lately. I’ve been thinking about how we know (and can be certain of) His plan for our lives.
So this was my divinely inspired thought a few days ago;
My happiness doesn’t mean I’m in God’s will.
My unhappiness doesn’t mean I’m not in God’s will. 
I know what you’re thinking “duh, Michelle”.
But for me, I needed to verbalize it- write it down and say it out loud few times.
You see, I’ve lived a lot of my life this way, without even realizing it.
I look back on difficult situations and circumstances in my life and think “Oh well, I was out of God’s plan then.” or “I must have done something bad and ‘walked away from God’s will’ “. I look towards the future and think ” Well, if we’re happy then we’ll know we’re in God’s will”.
Yes, it’s embarrassing to admit that I’ve been thinking like this (and that’s why I’m writing it here).
Now with this new perspective, I see more clearly that God has used those rather “unhappy” times to make me the person He wants me to be. And He’s used the “happy” times to bless me.
God hasn’t guaranteed our happiness….
“I don’t think the way you think.
The way you work isn’t the way I work.” Isaiah 55:8 (the message)
He has promised us other things…
“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” Romans 8:28

PS Michelle, I'm delighted in YOU!!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Crowned King


Then God said, "Let the earth bring forth the living creature according to its kind: cattle and creeping thing and beast of the earth, each according to its kind"; and it was so. Gen. 1:25

I was sitting in a waiting room with a lady I knew through my husbands work, talking about church. Knowing they don't attend anywhere or really believe, I was a bit excited to be having this conversation. After I invited them to visit our church, she replied "yes, my husband has been telling me we need to get the kids to church". In times past I would grab hold of that and run with it, excited that someone was coming to church. This time however, I heard in my head; "it will never work!"

 My friend in the waiting room had a sincere but misguided belief that she can give her children something she really doesn't fully believe or deem valuable for herself. We are creatures producing offspring after our own kind so as parents, our children will value what we value and do what we do, not what we say. If we have things alongside of God, altars, if you will, we sacrifice on and try to draw life from, our kids will have them as well. Things like tv entertainment, obsession with our weight/looks,  shopping, relationships, work, projects and busyness in activities.  Then when our kids respond with self-centeredness, greed and rebellion,  we determine that they need "more" God. So we may strive harder to give them more church, more rules and godlier outside influences, only to see it all swallowed up. 
"They sow the wind, And reap the whirlwind. The stalk has no bud; It shall never produce meal. If it should produce, Aliens would swallow it up." Hos 8:7.  

Could it be that aliens swallow up what is received, because we fail to recognize sin in our own life and how it affects our children?  I'm not saying all sin in our children is our fault but I'm simply challenging us to ask God to show us how much of what we dislike in them is an impartation of our sin and wrong heart. 

"For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life." Gal.6:8
1 and 2 Samuel mentions that David was crowned king many times. When he was a child, God anointed him, then the people of Judah did, then all Israel made a covenant and crowned him king. It gives me hope for our lives that we can reclaim some lost ground with Gods help, not one time only (coming to faith) but continually crowning Christ as king in more areas as we grow. Maybe we've kept Him out of our finances, friendships, leisure time and work. But the motivation has to be more than "I'm doing this for my children".  We have to own that ground as our own to see our sons and daughters inherit it and benefit. The bible says "Love The Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind and all your strength".  There will be enemies to dethrone and ground to reclaim but the victory will be sweet and the reward great.

God, help us to crown You king in more areas and fight the enemies of our hidden life in Christ. The worldliness, idols and wills not broken for You, are all sins that rob us of the life You have. Make us more free so our children can be also. Amen
By Maggie

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Ye of Faith


This past weekend our family went camping in the Keys.  By the end of the weekend, I was bothered by the fact that we didn’t sing worship songs around the campfire or read Scripture aloud like I figured a bunch of Christians should do.  However, as I thought about it, we were worshiping God, but just in other ways than songs we all know or the Word read.  Here’s a few ways we lived the Word and experienced God.

Our campsite was RIGHT on the ocean so we were glad we brought our kayak.  My husband Ryan and our son Matthew were out on that boat for much of the weekend and watching from afar, they looked so peaceful.  Matthew’s favorite Bible story these days is from Matthew 14 when Jesus and His disciples were in the boat and a storm arose so they all freaked out except Jesus – He was asleep.  Ryan and Matthew talked about that story while out there in the boat.

The second night it was hot, lightening striking all around and the radar showed a big storm with rain headed right for us.  As I was sandwiched in between the blow-up mattresses and (real) kids I laid there thinking of Matthew 14.  Also as a mom, I needed to be sure my first-time campers were comfortable, not scared, not cold, not too hot or going to fall off the edge of the mattress.  Needless to say, I hardly slept a wink with all my extra thinking.  But in Matthew 14 Jesus knew the character of His Father, the One who was directing the waves.  In that light, why was I worrying about all these things? 

One family in our group of campers had a flimsy tent and prayed for God to spare them from the ensuing storm that second night.  A little later they re-checked the radar and sure enough, God Almighty literally split the storm in half to go on either side of the Key/campsite we were on.  Wow!

“You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.  You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.  You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.  Deuteronomy 6:7-9

“Believe in the LORD your God, and you shall be established.” 2 Chronicles 20:20

“for the battle is not yours, but God’s”  2 Chronicles 20:15

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Encourage One Another

Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. - 1 Thessalonians 5:11 (NLT)


We all need to be encouraged at one time or another. Even when things seem to being going great. We've all answered the ever common "fine" when asked, "How are you?" even when it's not totally true.

Take this time and ask God to lay at least 3 women on your heart to encourage within the next 3 weeks. You can encourage one per week or all three today if you want. 

Here are some ways to encourage her:

1 - Mail a card or a note.
2 - Go for a visit.
3 - Take her to lunch or for coffee.
4 - Compliment her.
5 - Ask her for a prayer request.
6 - Give her a hug.
7 - Buy her a gift.
8 - Send her a song. (youtube link)
9 - Call her.
10 -  Email or Text her.

But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called "Today," so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness. Hebrews 3:13 (NIV)

Father, I pray for the disheartened and lonely. For those who feel alone even when surrounded by people. Lord, let her know that You hear her prayers. Comfort her with Your loving embrace. Remind her of Your everlasting love. Use us Lord, to encourage our sisters in the faith. We love You and we thank You for new mercies everyday, in Jesus' name, Amen.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Exposed


“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.” John 15:1-2 (NIV)

It was a beautiful tree. It had big lush green leaves, a winding trunk, and big fuscia-pink flowers. It provided the perfect amount of privacy from my kitchen table to the front street. I loved to sit at the kitchen table of my old house and look out toward that tree and the beautiful landscaping around it. It was such a peaceful, quiet time spot for me. Well, one day the landscapers came to “spruce thing up” as they made their rounds through the neighborhood mowing loans, trimming hedges, and shaping trees. They usually did a good job, except they always cut the trees back too low…I thought they were just being careless and lazy…just making sure they didn’t have to trim the trees often.

On this particular day, I made a special note reminding myself to ask the landscaper to trim the tree slightly so it did not look haggard by the time he left. Well, I heard them coming as they were making their way from the neighbor’s yard to my yard. One guy was cutting the grass, so I figured I had a few minutes before I needed to make my way outside. I didn’t. I went to complete a task only to come back and find that another guy had come at the same time to trim the tree and the hedges.

Sticks were the only things left of this beautiful tree. It was beyond hideous! Not a single flower or green leaf was left. How could they call this landscaping?! I was mad. So mad that I let the landscaper know how frustrated I was that he had just butchered my tree. There was no more privacy. As I sat at the kitchen table for quiet time, my neighbors going on their morning walk would look toward my direction and wave. Ahhhhh! I was frustrated!

BUT the strangest thing happened: after a couple of weeks of sun and rain, that tree started to bloom from the inside out. Green leaves, buds, and flowers had sprouted up all over the barren branches. It turns out that even though that tree was bountiful on the outside, the inside was barren and needed some sun and rain. The inner branches had to be exposed in order to bear flowers.

Has there ever been a time in your life when you felt pruned to the max? Like God had given you too many burdens, too much pain? Have you ever felt barren or exposed or vulnerable? I have! I can name quite a few times: when my brother and dad died, when we miscarried our second child, when my husband disappointed me, when I felt like my kids were testing me to my limits, when we had to short sale our house.

BUT God was faithful through it all, and just like that tree, He produced fruit and spiritual muscles in my life that I did not have before. Some of those times of trial had produced an incredible surge in my spiritual growth. If you know someone who is going through a tough time, where they feel completely pruned, or if you are going through a tough time of pruning, I want to encourage you that God will transform the haggard brokenness into beauty.

Challenge: Do you know someone who is hurting? How can you better serve them? Remember that one of the best things you can do for them is to remember them in your prayers. Stand in the gap for them. Pray that God will shower them with his Son and the light that only He can give.

Prayer:
Heavenly Father, you love us so much. In fact your Word says that you are love. Yet you often allow seasons of pain and pruning in our lives that we don’t understand. Please hold us when we need it the most. Shower us with the love of your Son. Rain your Holy Spirit on us so that we may know that you are near. Help us to be soothing balm to those who are hurting and feeling exposed. Help us to not just pray for our own needs, but for the needs of others. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

Further reading: John 15:1-17

***This is a repost of an earlier blog last April, but I am reposting it because rereading it has encouraged me greatly. Once again, my family and I are in a season of intense pruning. I do not like the process, but I find myself thanking God for the results. I have grown in so many ways, and I am so thankful that I am not the woman that I used to be. I pray that this blog post blesses you today.

In His love,
Teresa

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Go To The WORD


It was a few days ago that I sought out my wise friend, a mother of four, for some counsel on the subject of friendship between siblings. My boys love each other greatly but have been fighting more than normal these days and I knew she, having older kids, probably dealt with this herself. I questioned if she had ever done a "friendship" study for kids or knew of any material that encouraged love and kindness between kids.

For lack of guidance a nation falls, 
but victory is won through many advisers.
 - Proverbs 11:14


My sweet friend reminded me of truth. She said each time her kids struggled with issues she would seek out that theme in the word of God. Doing a word study on that issue coming up with scripture, to highlight and solve the problem at hand. 

This was brilliant to me. Here I was looking for some study to buy and use, when she encouraged me to study on my own (refreshing my heart in the Word through this process) and find examples in the Word to give hope to my family. Not only would my boys be encouraged but my heart would be learning as I studied as well. She is such a smart friend! 


So that is my goal from now on. When I find myself dealing with issues with my kids and want to "Google" a study to buy, I will now first seek out the Word on my own to see what lessons I can pull out. This process draws my heart back to truth and allows my kids to see that first and foremost we go to the Word before anywhere else. 

After all, it is the ONLY book that has every answer to any issue we have! 

All Scripture is God-breathed 
and is useful for teaching, 
rebuking, correcting and training
 in righteousness
- 2 Timothy 3:16

P.S. This wise mom, shared with her kids, the story of David and Jonathan when describing what friendship looks like. Also asking her kids what were good and not so good examples of friendship in their own life. 


Do you seek out wise counsel when curious as a mom?

Is the Word of God a source of information you go to for wisdom in times of crisis of parenting? 

Saturday, April 20, 2013

The Wise Listen to Advice


Instruct the wise and 
they will be wiser still;
teach the righteous and 
they will add to their learning. 
- Proverbs 9:9


Since moving to Naples, my husband now works from home a lot more. I love this and he has such great support for what I do as a mom more now than ever before. After all he is now seeing how I parent up close and more frequently. With that, my struggles are surfacing and he lovingly has shared with me how I can be a better mommy for my boys. I so appreciate this, as hard as it is to swallow, because it's as if the Lord is holding a mirror up for me to see the zones I need to hone in on and work on. 


A wise son heeds his father’s instruction,
    but a mocker does not respond to rebukes. - Proverbs 13:1

I wish I could say that my heart is always ready to receive words of  challenge as I parent, but that wouldn't be true. Sometimes it takes a little while for the truth spoken to sink in and taken to heart. Sometimes it takes time for my wall of pride to come down. Thankfully the Holy Spirit encourages me in many ways as He guides me on how to parent. The Lord doesn't give up on me and allows me room to grow and patience to see me through. I want to be the wise "son" who heeds my heavenly father's instruction on parenting. In order to do this, I must soften my heart when the Lord speaks to me (through my husband and others) about the changes I need to make in my parenting. 

I am so grateful that I have a friend (my awesome hubby) willing to speak the truth in love. Loving me enough to walk me through my struggles. Holding my hand the whole time. Being a vessel the Lord uses as an "agent of change" in my life. Do you have a friend like that?

The way of fools 
seems right to them,
but the wise 
listen to advice. 
- Proverbs 12:15

Do you receive constructive criticism, on your parenting, well?

Has the Lord been speaking to you about your parenting?

Have you been listening?

Pray that the Holy Spirit would soften your heart and make you ready to receive encouragement and correction so change can happen. 







Friday, April 19, 2013

The Diamond is Coming!!


(Google Image)

    
      I love the honesty that shows up on the posts of Parakaleo.  Just moms trying to sort this “mom” thing out.  It is often reflected within the posts of how we get into a routine with our parenting.  Each day seems like the last.  We even can find ourselves having a little pity party and licking our wounds about what “isn’t” or equally disheartening about what “is.”
     I have been reminded of the analogy of our oldest as she was waiting for her proposal from her Prince Charming.  Our son in law had come to both my husband and I individually and asked permission to marry our firstborn.  However, he is a planner and had to get all the circumstances just right. 
     Michelle got ready every day thinking with each meeting of her boyfriend, she might come home with a beautiful ring, representing his love and commitment to their lives together.  As one day ran into the next, Michelle got anxious and disappointed.  She came home day after day disheartened that Cole had not proposed. 
     I have the honor as her mom to hear exactly what she was mulling over.  She would say things like, “maybe he doesn’t really love me” or “if he can’t make up his mind, maybe we should break up.”  My responses had to be casual and yet try to get her to see she didn’t know the whole picture.
     As I have shared their story you know she and Cole did get engaged and married.
The point is this…the diamond ring was coming!
    As we parent we may feel like nothing is changing. The children continue to argue, the bills stack up, you are spending more time in the pediatrician’s office than you do in the park.  You are making meals, taxing kids…
    Can I encourage you moms with this thought…The Diamond is coming!  It may seem “late” or you may question “His” love.  Don’t give up! Don’t break up! Don’t even question His love!  The Diamond is coming!
Galatians 6: 9
So let’s not allow ourselves to get fatigued doing good. At the right time we will harvest a good crop if we don’t give up, or quit.
(The Message)


     

Thursday, April 18, 2013

WHO'S FIRST




I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me Galatians 2:20

He advised me he was going to start studying again for a promotional test. What you may be thinking is, "oh, how great! a husband who works hard to provide" and you would be absolutely right! However, what I heard was: 
I am going to be studying for 6-8 hours a day between my 24 hour shifts, I know you also work 13 hour shifts 2 days a week and we are in a busy season of 7th grade and track not to mention the 5 and 3 year old, and I also know I did this 1 year ago for a different promotion but I am doing it again!


I was not very excited about this thought at all. You see we had just done this and I knew what it would take and what sacrifices would have to be made in order to accomplish this task. I was trying to be supportive and be a "good Godly wife" but ladies my flesh got the best of me! I found myself a month and a half in to the studying tired, overwhelmed, and feeling like a single-mom of 3 and it all spilled out. I knew my husband was under immense pressure and I felt horrible after the fact. We were both able to pray and talk through it. We realized where we had both gone wrong and were able to come to a solution for the rest of the process. Though I knew I would have to make some sacrifices and die to my flesh we were able to make it through and reap the benefit of my husband passing his test!! Praise God!! and I also feel like though I got frustrated half way through I was able to pass mine. :)



Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:2

Mom's, we pour out into our children, care for our friends, help our coworkers, and give in so many ways but we have to remember that God has placed us in a marriage that we would first serve our husbands. Be careful not to get these out of order. Also, open communication in a gentle and humble way is essential in every marriage. Pray before you speak and pray about your attitude. Where are your feelings coming from? Could they be your flesh? Be careful not to put extra stress on your marriage because you may be having a tough day. You can still communicate how you are feeling with your husband without causing damage and hurt feelings. 

Father in heaven help us to be the submissive wives you have asked us to be. Lord when we are weary give us strength. When we just don't wan't to give anymore of ourselves help us to give even more. Help us to die to ourselves and pick up our cross on a daily basis and reap the benefits here on earth and in Heaven!! In Jesus name I pray blessings on each mom and wife who reads and writes on this blog. Amen

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Letting Go...Again

"Do not put out the Spirit's fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt.  Test everything. Hold on to the good.  Avoid every kind of evil." 1Thessalonians 5:19-21

I tend to be a passive person until it comes to my children.  I have hopes, dreams, prayers, and opinions when it comes to their today and tomorrow.  However, what I've been learning lately is that by letting go of some control of them (Samuel 17 and Bailee 15) and letting the Lord do his work, I actually feel more in control.  Does this make any sense?  Before you get freaked out, it's baby steps.  Both for you and your children.  As christian parents we so desire our children to know and love God and for them to live a life that reflects they do.  As they enter their pre-teen and teen years we so pray for them to take ownership of their faith and relationship with Him.  To grow in and grow up in Jesus.  The only way they can be free to do that is if we as parents begin to let go.

For example, my son is a junior in high school.  He has been getting inquires from those around him about what he will be doing after high school.  I have been wondering that also.  I see many of Sam's God given gifts and talents.  I have my opinions about what I think he should do.  However, at this point in his life, instead of dictating his every move, the Lord has been showing me that I need to pray more and speak less.  To encourage and Sam to seek Him.  Yes my views and opinions can be helpful, but where the the "real" growing up comes from is Sam learning to discern the Lord's voice. I was reminded of Jeremiah 1:3; "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations."  Again in Psalm 139:16; "All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be."  It is crucial to allow our children the opportunity to seek, listen, and discern the Lord.  Oh boy is it hard!  But wow, what a sense of freedom when you see them walking in confidence with Him.  Yes they will make mistakes.  However, I'd rather they were still under our roof making them than ill equipped out there in this world.  Would you agree? 

Be encouraged godly mom.  As you have sown the Word of the Lord in your children and continue to do so, the Lord is faithful.  Begin to show your children that you trust their relationship with God.  Give them permission and freedom to seek him for the direction of their lives.  Pray and watch the Lord work.  Never forget that He loves them more than you do.
Teenage years are fun!