Category: motherhood

Parenting Completely: Where the Little Stuff Becomes Big

We can’t help it. We want to do something important, something other people think is important, something validated by general nods from society. Something for the Lord.

In reality, however, most of us won’t be called to take the gospel to a tribe of cannibals, or become a renowned teacher. And the thing is, that’s just where God would have us, because His grace is most needed where people are thirsty and need their dirty feet washed.

And it’s in those humble, daily acts of service where we become like Him. It’s the only kind of ministry, in fact, He commanded.

Can we wake up joyful because we are right where He wants us? Can we rejoice for mundane work that, when done humbly, for the glory of God, becomes elevated to honor?

Can we remember that it’s in the daily grind where the Kingdom of God is and grows?

It’s not the big moments that move our children to love Him, to love life, to grow in grace. And we can’t parent completely in “quality time.”

Just like a garden grows…ever so slowly, where the gardener is faithful and consistent.

Mothers Need This, and Our Children Need it More (How to REALLY Make Childhood Magical)

It’s difficult to articulate how much I appreciate this article by Bunmi Laditan. How much I think we desperately  need to read it, yes, but BELIEVE it and live it.

My grandfather was a hard man. And so my father grew up hard. He had to shoot his favorite dog–his pet, his best friend–because the dog attacked the farm pig one day. Dad was 15 and Papa just handed him the gun and said “handle it.”

They had a dirt floor in a log cabin chinked with mud. One Christmas Papa forgot gifts. On Christmas Eve he ran to the drug store and bought my Dad a plastic watch.

My parents didn’t have toys. They didn’t go on vacations. But they turned out really well. Probably better than most.

So maybe these kinds of stories from our ancestors prompt us to give our children more. But then we fall into the other ditch, not realizing what “more” really is, and we sacrifice our time money and sanity for all the wrong things. This ditch is even worse. And in a subtly twisted kind of way, the Internet and social media like Facebook and Pinterest has fed the mania, often turning it into an egocentric, one-up performance.

In I’m Done Making My Kid’s Childhood Magical, the author succinctly makes a case for simplicity and I applaud her. Mothers need it to relieve guilt and anxiety, families need it to relieve time and financial constraints, and children need it to grow up happier.

Read it.

“Parents do not make childhood magical. Abuse and gross neglect can mar it, of course, but for the average child, the magic is something inherent to the age. Seeing the world through innocent eyes is magical. Experiencing winter and playing in the snow as a 5-year-old is magical. Getting lost in your toys on the floor of your family room is magical. Collecting rocks and keeping them in your pockets is magical. Walking with a branch is magical.

It is not our responsibility to manufacture contrived memories on a daily basis.” Read the rest HERE.

 

Diapers & Divine Appointments


I had already changed three dirty diapers today. But there was another one. Which meant an “interruption” in my lunch preparations.

His little face beamed up at mine from the bed. “It’s up to you”, he seemed to say. He depends completely on me for his most basic needs. And it’s then I remember…

“I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these, you did it for me.”

I can change that diaper, with a smile and confident heart, knowing that what the world may call a menial task or an interruption, is an act of love toward my Savior. Isn’t that incredible!

The “interruptions” for a drink of water or a band-aid–those aren’t interruptions at all, but divine appointments to meet my Master’s needs.

And then my heart feels the pang for each time I do grumble as I serve. Do I forget it’s really Him? Yes, I do forget that I serve the King every day. And with whatever attitude I serve, that is what I offer Him.

Is it a privilege? Do I meet the demands of a busy home with a joy that comes from a station of “royal service”?

Let me be so consumed with loving Him that I find delight in the humblest opportunities to express it.

 

5 Lessons I Learned from My 2 Year Old

  1. I don’t remember what you did to make me mad 1o minutes ago. Can we be friends again?
  2. What is my shoe size? It depends on how much I like the shoes.
  3. STOP EVERYTHING!!  There’s a caterpillar.
  4. I didn’t notice you don’t have make up on and you haven’t had a shower and you’re hair looks bad. I still think you’re wonderful.
  5. It’s just peanut butter. And peanut butter is small in the big scheme of things. Don’t sweat the small stuff.

How to Build a Strong Christian Home (New Book Review!)

June Fuentes, from A Wise Woman Builds Her Home has written an extraordinarily practical, wise book about all things building a Christian home culture. For the mom who already understands building her home and the power of her influence, the book is an excellent shot in the arm, jarring us from our daily doldrums.

For the new mom, or a mother just beginning and desiring to understand how important her role is in building a Christian home, June’s book is packed with encouragement but also practical ideas about how to do it.

In a culture that treats home as merely a stopping place for people to eat and sleep, How to Build a Strong Christian Home is a much-needed clarion call for the church, the family and the Christian community, to reestablish the foundation of Christian culture. If we are to ever see the transforming power of Christ’s work in our churches and communities, we must first ignite it in our homes.

Get your copy of  How to Build a Strong Christian Home (#2 on Amazon’s hot new releases in Christian Family!) for $4.99!

BUY NOW

 

Included in the book:

  • The State Of The Home
  • A Multi-Generational Vision: Leaving A Legacy
  • The Exquisite Home Culture
  • The Imperfect Home
  • The Important Role Of Parents And Their Example
  • Discipleship, Shepherding Hearts, And Teaching The Word Of God In The Christian Home
  • Education In The Home: Purposeful And Powerful Kingdom Conversation
  • Preparing Your Home: The Influence Of A Godly Atmosphere
  • The Influence Of Entertainment
  • Making Memories In The Kitchen & Gracious Hospitality
  • Serving On A Mission Together As A Family
  • The Foolish Woman Tears Down Her Home
  • Guarding The Home
  • The Secret To A Happy Home Life

The One Thing That Will Most Determine Your Happiness (And Theirs)

I have discovered what I believe to be THE most important thing we can cultivate in our lives and instill in our children–the thing that will most determine how happy they are in life:

Gratitude.

I know, you were hoping for something more spectacular or less common. But there are shades of gratitude (or ingratitude) we might not readily recognize.

First of all, we understand that gratitude isn’t simply remembering to say “thank you” when someone is kind or giving. Gratitude is a posture of processing everything in life that happens to us through the correct lens of truth.

It’s recognizing that we came into the world with nothing, no one owes us anything (not even God who has already given us the priceless gift of eternal life through His Son’s death) and all that we have is a gift.

Nancy Leigh DeMoss, in her book, Choosing Gratitude: Your Journey to Joy, describes gratitude as the result of humility, and ingratitude the result of pride, because the proud in heart believes he is owed something and can, in fact, never be satisfied with what he gets.

Have you seen a spirit of ingratitude lived out? We can talk about it in a book or a blog post, but until you’ve seen its destructive power you can’t quite grasp just how important it is.

A person with a spirit of ingratitude can’t move forward, especially when trials come (and trails will come!) They become paralyzed with the thoughts of “life is so unfair” and unable to see the blessings, gifts and grace poured out to them along the way.

Conversely, a grateful spirit, when faced with trials, can focus on all he has been given, look at his trial as an opportunity to grow and learn, and though there may be grief still, he doesn’t get bogged down with a victim mentality, shaking his fist at the world, never able to get back up and move again.

He is able to say with Job, even through pain, “The Lord gives and the Lord takes away, blessed be the name of the Lord.”

Of all the many things I wish to cultivate into the hearts of my children, I’m trying fervently to get this lesson across. To point them, even in the smallest of examples, to give thanks for where they are, what they have, and God’s abundant grace, and to recognize how he uses others in our lives to pour out that grace.

I believe it can make all the difference in the world to how they will respond to challenges as they grow up. It will make the difference in an overflowing heart (even in the direst of conditions) or an overwhelmed one.

May we grow them into real joy!

“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”  1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

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