It’s Christmas Eve and thoughts of the many MW readers preparing to celebrate this very special day raced through my mind. Many of us have various things going on that could easily damper the merry in Christmas – if we allow it to. Dealing with the death of a loved one, a troubled marriage, children who have gone astray, financial difficulties, and career changes, are just a few issues that life offers. I couldn’t wait to receive the words for this meditation that would bless us this season.
A very soulful rendition of Go Tell it on the Mountain keeps playing over and over in my mind – probably because I’ve been listening to it over and over again. No matter what situations we may be dealing with, our Savior was born to set us free. Our Savior was born to give us life more abundantly. Our Savior was born to give a peace that surpasses all understanding. We must tell this good news to another troubled soul. This classic song isn’t a seasonal message, yet a life long obligation. This good news brings me comfort as I think of the Mother who can’t afford to buy her child presents or the Mother who isn’t in her right mind. We must share our good news! Christ’s birth is our life – our joy – our strength – in spite of what life throws our way. Just because the Christmas season passes, the good news will last forever. Go tell it!
Mark 5:19 (NIV)
... "Go home to your friends, and tell them what great things the Lord has done for you, and how He has had compassion on you."
While shopping for a baby shower gift this weekend, I saw an unusual figurine – a pregnant angel. She was dressed in white with glittering wings and was holding her stomach. I don’t particularly care for figurine angels, yet the longer I studied her the more appropriate she became. Mothers are God’s angels chosen to care for His babies. Sometimes we need a reminder of just how valuable we are to God. I thought of Mary and how special she was to be chosen to bring baby Jesus into the world. There is no higher calling than to nurture and protect God’s children. Not only are we called to be caretakers, yet just as Mary is an example of a Godly woman and Mother, we are called to be examples also. Each of us should strive to be a Paradigm of Motherhood.
It’s easy to fall into a rut and think our role is another ordinary job with mundane responsibilities, yet there is nothing ordinary about being a Godly Mother. Everyday is full of purpose and opportunity. This is the perfect season to reflect on our calling as Mothers and I encourage you to encourage another Mother either in your words or deeds. We are all traveling this challenging journey of Motherhood and there is nothing easy about it. Remember you are chosen – you are called - you have purpose! Let’s walk in our calling and not forget the younger Mothers traveling behind us. Yes, I decided to purchase the pregnant angel, yet was also reminded to give the gift of being an example of a Godly Mother.
I was trying hard to prevent busyness in my life this wonderful month of December, yet it isn’t working. It’s funny how December calls for more of our time and attention. I become irritable when I’m swamped with the stuff of life because my main concern is making sure everything I do is ordered by God. I attempt to avoid my plate being full of self served actions and events, yet I’m not always successful. The weekend was so busy for me I felt like I was running ahead of Jesus and waiting for Him to catch up with me. I couldn’t wait to get in the presence of God this morning to just sit and listen. It was time to be still. No television, no radio, and no people in my ear…I only wanted to hear the voice of my Heavenly Father. I need Him to order my steps, guide me, lead me, and help me to stay focused on Him as I prepare for another week. This time of being still and listening helped to renew my mind and review my priorities. I feel refreshed and empowered to do what I’m called to do as a wife, mother, and every other hat I wear. It’s easy to forget who is in control as we schedule meetings and plan activities. Thank God for the mind to stop, be still, and know God is in control of my life today and everyday!
Psalm 46:10 (NKJV)
Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!
Saturday morning as I sat in my car waiting for my sons’ flag football games to begin, I observed a mother of four completely stressed out, drinking coffee, and smoking cigarettes. She was doing all she could to keep her young children in order and was doing a great job at it. I have difficult moments with my two children and can’t imagine having four; I began praying for her. It was only eight in the morning and she had the whole day ahead of her. Lord, have mercy. Although observing her was like watching an action packed movie, it was probably second nature for her. I wanted to help her, yet remembered I had three football games ahead of me and was in no position to help anyone else, so I didn’t. Christmas came to mind and how appropriate it would be to share the Prince of Peace with the many hurried and frazzled Mothers I’ll come in contact with. So many Mothers are counting pennies to buy presents, looking for part-time jobs for the holidays, over decorating, and splurge spending. The seasoned Mothers who have gone through these early Motherhood moments should share words of wisdom and I should have shared with the Mother of four I observed. I’m sure I’ll see her again on the field and when I do, I will. Who wouldn’t benefit from hearing comforting words about the Prince of Peace? Who doesn’t want peace in their life? What Mother doesn’t want her peace of mind? Because this beautiful season can be hidden with the busyness of the season, we can easily miss the priceless gift of peace. Let’s give the gift of peace this Christmas – the Prince of Peace.
I can't help stressing the importance of exercise ESPECIALLY during the hype of the holiday season. We can forget ourselves in the midst of the shopping, decorating, and entertaining and before you know it, we're sluggish and irritable. This is just a reminder to move something each day to get the blood flowing and to keep your peace of mind!
1 John 1:7 (NIV)But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.
I can’t forget those in physical, verbal, and mentally abusive marriages – please know you can forgive while protecting yourself.
Ephesians 5:2 (NKJV) And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.
Last night I watched a show on facial deformities and I should never have another negative thought about any aspect of my being. The enemy knows the power of a woman and his subtle schemes to destroy our esteem and worth begins in our own mind with the thoughts we have of ourselves. Can you imagine a world of women with total self-confidence and supernatural abilities? Watch out world! For those blessed to have daughters, make it a priority to teach your daughter to love herself. For those of us with sons, let’s teach them to acknowledge women as the beautiful, precious vessels God created. And above all - love yourself as the wonderful woman God purposely and perfectly made!
Proverbs 139:14 (NIV)
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
In the midst of this busy day, I thought of how many times my little one calls my name. Ha! Now, when I get tired of hearing my name called, I'll remember yesterday and just how precious the presence of the Lord is to me. Just calling the name, Jesus, is a comfort to me! A Mother's presence is just as comforting to her children. They call on us for every need, request, complaint, and want. We are truly the Jesus in our home and the Jesus in their young minds. We are the answer to their every need! A Mother's presence is like no other and our children need us. So, when we get tired of hearing our name called, consider it an honor and a privilege to be used - for Christ's sake.
I’ve been promised a life of victory! I don’t have to live my life wondering and hoping about the outcome of my circumstances. I have a choice to maintain a mind of victory or defeat. My life should be anxiety free! These thoughts made me want to jump up and down and run through my living room as if I had won the World Series. What joy! I have God’s favor living a life of promised triumph. It doesn’t matter what the middle of my mess looks like – I have the victory! It doesn’t matter if I’m bringing up the rear – I live in victory! It doesn’t matter if things don’t go according as planned – I’ve got the victory! Helping our children apply these concepts in their small worlds of academics, sports, and other endeavors teaches them spiritual success. Preparing our children for life is one thing, yet preparing them with a mindset of victory is larger than life. The benefits of being obedient and in God’s will are beyond belief, yet real. The Red Sox may have won the World Series, yet when you're on God’s team, you're a winner in life! Live today in victory!
The key to this faith is staying in the will of God and living my life solely for Him. As my tornadoes come and go (and they are coming), they remind me I am not here to fulfill my own selfish wants, needs, and desires. I was created by Him for Him and nothing else matters. Is a tornado visiting you? Well, Hallelujah anyhow!
Psalm 113:1 (TLB)
Hallelujah! O Servants of Jehovah, praise His name.
Proverbs 31:27 (NIV)
She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.
|Tuesday evenings my husband and sons have men’s night. They usually go to a dollar movie and out to eat. I don’t care where they go as long as they leave the house. I use this time to renew my mind and pour into myself. When Mothers are pulled in every direction by so many people inside and outside the home, we are exhausted of all our resources and we need to stop for a fill-up! We’re like a balloon slowly leaking air and as we get to the last bit of air we circle around even faster thinking we’ve caught a second wind, yet we quickly burn out mentally, physically, or both! To never stop to refill ourselves is dangerous to our body and unfair to our family. Is it time for you to stop for a top off? Filler-up or Fill HER Up?|
|I’ve been doing everything in my power to lower my blood pressure and at a recent doctor’s visit; it was lower than ever. I was thrilled, yet my doctor had more news. An earlier series of lab tests indicated I have MCTD. “I have WHAT?” Mixed Connective Tissue Disease is the name of a rare disease wanting to damage my body. I prayed and the peace that surpasses all understanding covered me as my doctor continued to speak. He asked if I was sure I felt alright. When I assured him I felt fine, he said if I had not already been doing the right things, our conversation would not be as pleasant. Eating right, exercising, drinking water, and meditating are part of my daily life - now more than ever. Little did I know working to lower my blood pressure was intervening severe symptoms of this rare disease – thank you, Holy Spirit for your guidance! Besides occasional bouts of dreadful fatigue, other symptoms have yet to visit me. I wish I had been obedient enough to care for my temple anyway – regardless of blood pressure, yet I thank God for his mercy and another opportunity to live right – physically. When will we get it? How many times must we be told the importance of exercise? When will we start drinking at least 8-10 glasses of water each day? When will we start getting the proper rest our bodies yearn for? Hmmm…maybe when we visit the doctor and he tells us we have a disease. Mothers, if you haven’t already, I encourage you to begin today – take care of your temple! How you treat your body today is indication of how it will treat you later. Young Mothers are not excluded from this! Don’t wait to ask God for healing after the damage is done. Ask for discipline to implement preventive measures in your daily life - today.|
3 John 1:2 (NIV)
Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.
|After being with my sons all day long, most evenings I’d like to just sit and vegetate, yet this rarely happens. They love it when the entire family is together. While I’m trying to find a quiet corner to escape in, they’re planning a family night. Even time spent at the dinner table is enjoyable to them; they can sit for an hour after the meal is complete while we all joke and laugh with one another. I’m grateful my sons appreciate their family, yet at the same time I often find myself thinking of other things I’d like to be doing. It’s heaven to me to be in a corner reading a book or somewhere quiet writing. I just need a minute – not a whole day – just a minute! Hmmm…will my boys grow out of this? At ages nine and eleven…yep…I better enjoy this while I can. Children experience changing stages of development, yet spending time with them produces unchanging results. Spending time with them shows a love they’ll never find in their peers. Spending time with them gives a confidence and security they won’t find in the streets. Spending time with them gives them a desire to want to spend time with us. Mothers don’t have a lot of spare time and if you’re selfish like me, you’re trying to find time to yourself, yet it’s not the quantity of time, yet the quality time we spend with our child that makes the difference.|
|The days seem to be passing by so quickly. It’s already Wednesday and I’m trying to remember what I did Tuesday! The hustle and bustle of life hides the sound of the tick tock and before you know it, time has passed by. Work, school, housekeeping, cooking, and errands are all necessities of life that consume time, yet I try to remember the next minute is not promised to me. Enjoy the moment, seize the day, grasp every moment as if it were the last! I really have nothing – no thing – to complain about. I’m alive and just the ability to BE is enough to have joy and enjoy. Life is full of swift transitions and not knowing what the future holds is enough to live each moment to the fullest.|
Whatever you may be dealing with today – it’s already alright! It could be worse and yes, it could be better, yet IT IS WHAT IT IS. Live for today and grasp the moment!
|My eleven year old is on lockdown until he learns to take the trash out without being told. Am I being too hard on him? My Father says if this is my only issue with my son right now, I don’t have any problems. Well, I may not have a problem now, but my son will have problems later if he doesn’t have consequences for his lack of responsibility. Okay, I admit my choice of punishment is a little harsh. I’ll release my son from boot-camp in a few days, yet it’s amazing what no television and play station has done to him. Taking away his most prize possessions has made a difference in his attitude also. I’m loving it! I know he’s putting on a good show until he gets his world back, yet he’ll remember what happened and I won’t hesitate to do it again. I always remind myself I’m raising some young woman’s husband, I’m raising a Father, I’m raising a future employee, I’m raising a future community/state leader. The early habits created today will transfer to his adult life, so as The Loving Mama, it is my responsibility to raise a responsible, contributing citizen with character. Whatever my son decides to do when he leaves the house is on him, but for now…TAKE THE TRASH OUT!|
| My nine-year-old niece ran for vice president of her school student council recently. Her mother was surprised at her strong desire to run for the position plus stand before her peers and deliver a speech, which by the way was awesome! She was allowed to write the speech herself, yet of course her supportive, controlling aunt gave her a few helpful tips. I prayed with her the morning of her speech and waited by the phone to hear the voting results. My niece didn’t win, yet I excitedly told her she was a winner anyway! She didn’t understand, so I explained how things really do work together when you love God and made it clear her defeat wasn’t because she didn’t receive enough votes, yet it wasn’t God’s will for her to win – not yet. It’s strange, yet we learn few life lessons in good times, however, when adversity and disappointments surface, our character is strengthened, we better understand God and ourselves.|
My niece is blessed to experience something so large in her little life and more blessed to have Godly women explain the blessings in tribulations. Her already visible leadership seeds will prepare her for future endeavors, yet they must be properly watered to take root. My own children have gifts and talents - some have surfaced and some haven’t. My youngest told me last night he wanted to be a fisherman when he grew up. Hmmm…can we reach a little higher? It’s not my job to plan his future, yet to watch for the seeds and pray for wisdom as I position him to stay in God’s will. Our children are created with purpose and their disappointments, tribulations, and challenges are only preparing the path. Needless to say, my niece wants to run for president next year. Looks like my little princess of politics learned a few good lessons!
| Working from home is a challenge for me as it is for many Mothers with home businesses. I literally have to steal time from my family to get anything done. This morning I awoke at 2 a.m., so I decided to sneak on the computer and get some work done. The computer is a magnet and as soon as I sit in front of it, the phone rings, the boys desperately need me, and my husband wants to talk. Toooo funny! Well, I took advantage of this early morning rising and truly enjoyed the quietness and lack of disturbances for about an hour. I didn't know how to act! I was amazed at my accomplishments and felt good about my progress. Low and behold, I hear what use to be pitter patter, but now sounds like thump thump of heavy feet hitting the hallway floor. It's my nine-year-old walking towards me, smiling, and waving hello. WHAT? Am I dreaming? This CAN'T be happening. After I swallowed to calm down, I kindly spoke back to my sleepy son. I just waited to see what my young one was going to do. No he didn't! Yes he did! He sat on the sofa and looked at me! "Boy, if you don't take your tail back to bed! It's 3 o'clock in the morning!" Needless to say, he smiled and went back to bed and I exhaled. Whew! I immediately got back to work with confirmation - In order to successfully work from home, I must steal time from my family. Maybe next time I'll use a ski mask and black suit as a disguise.|
|After my morning meditation, I cooked my husband breakfast, put in a load of laundry, made the bed, exercised for 25 minutes, and STOPPED! I went outside to enjoy the fresh, morning air. It was still dark, so I looked up at the bright moon, the twinkling stars, admired the tall trees and I heard one bird chirping away - loudly. It was almost like the bird was yelling at me for not taking time to enjoy God’s beautiful creation before I began my busy day (smile). The morning air felt good on my skin. I took a deep breath and simply enjoyed the ability to inhale and exhale. After being reminded that the next minute isn’t promised to be, my surroundings became brighter, more vivid, and more beautiful. What a waste to hit the floor running and not acknowledge God’s creation. Stop! Enjoy the beauty of the day before you begin your day! |
|Here we are again, another week full of errands, meetings, work, sports, homework, cooking, cleaning, and the stuff of life to fill our days. Another week is upon us to try to get it right. Just thinking of what needs to be done can be arduous.|
Last night after everyone finally turned in, I stood in the middle of my living room, as I often do, and looked around. The boys had their school clothes sitting out - they need ironing, yet we have clothes to wear. Our furniture needs replacing, but it’s enduring the wear and tear. Books were in every corner, yet we have eyes to see and the ability to read. A water bottle was on the floor; thank God we have clean water to drink. The plants need watering – they were gifts from friends and family. The family pictures need dusting, yet we have each other and we are together. It’s so easy to find things to whine and complain about, yet I’m so blessed! Sometimes I can’t see the blessings surrounding me for the mess in my mind. Actually, I’m beyond blessed because my basic needs were met a long time ago. I truly have God’s favor in and over my life.
Dissatisfaction, grumbling, and complaining are all negative vibes smothering the goodness of God. The very breath used to complain with is from God. Having a heart of thankfulness is the least I can do to show my appreciation for blessings I don’t deserve. Things may not be going the way I want them to, yet I’m alive and I have everything I need plus some. I’m beyond blessed! Thank God for this new Monday. I have another chance to get it right. I have another chance to find the good in every situation. I have another chance to focus on my blessings instead of my busyness. I have another chance to acknowledge my Master and say thank you. I have another chance to realize I am beyond blessed!
Have a Happy Monday in Motherhood!
Psalm 5:12 (NIV)
For surely, O LORD, you bless the righteous; you surround them with your favor as with a shield.
I awoke this morning feeling very TIRED! After my morning meditation, I decided to go back to bed for about an hour. Why not? It wasn’t even 6 a.m. yet! I thought some extra sleep would give me the energy I needed to get through the long day ahead of me. Well, that’s exactly what I did. I got back in the bed and it wasn’t a minute later that I got up - again. Sleep wasn’t what I needed at all. I needed to exercise! I made my soy shake and commenced my exercise regime. I immediately felt better physically and mentally. It’s so easy to be lazy, yet it takes effort to do what is right. Not only right for ourselves, but for our family. Yes, they benefit from our exercise. We have more energy and more endurance for them to suck out of us (smile). I can’t afford to be lazy, yet I do play my lazy card from time to time. Our bodies will only take care of ourselves as well as we take care of our bodies.
My life has been a whirlwind lately. My Father has been in the hospital for the past two weeks, soccer season has started, home school is in full force, and my church has been keeping me quite busy also. Oh, did I mention I also have a few personal endeavors? I can't forget about me! Some days I didn't think I would make it, yet the Supernatural Power of God steps in just when I need it most. I always get an extra ounce of grace to keep going. It's amazing how women keep going, and going, and going. Because of this busyness, I've been forced to be consistent in my exercise - it helps me maintain a pleasant demeanor (smile). It also keeps my energy flowing and my mind from straying down the negative track. Busyness has always been scary for me because if I'm not careful, it can cloud my focus and detour Spirit-led direction. I can get so busy living that I forget to live! Staying connected to my only true power source, my Creator, keeps me in PERFECT PEACE.
It's ironic, yet this recent state of busyness has shown me what I'm made of. It's shown me my abilities and what I can do if I just take care of me FIRST. It's also shown me another level of how God's supernatural power can become a natural part of a woman's existence!
|Last week my sons and I had an extended visit in Alabama. The length of our visit was unexpected due to my Father's stay in the hospital, which meant both boys would miss their first soccer game of the season. My puberty-stricken, eleven-year-old was very angry and cried because his plans were tainted. My immediate reaction was to give him a few choice words of his selfish, insensitive behavior, yet I thought of a similar instance when I was in school. My Father volunteered to drive and chaperone a club I was a member of to New Orleans and he became sick. I too, was quite insensitive. I thought it was cruel of my Father to ruin our plans; I was only thinking of myself. I related to my son's feelings and understood these child-like moments will help him develop into a mature, Godly man - if I help him. I shared my self-centered story with my unhappy son. We discussed the many disappointments ahead of him and the importance of keeping his eyes on God in all circumstances.|
I know both my sons will have many heartbreaking days ahead of them and it's my job to stick by them as they mature mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. Until they develop their own mind for Christ, I must be patient and love them through their emotions and issues of life - just as Christ continually loves me through my mess. Yes, there are plenty of growing pains going on in my home. This puberty process is painful for me. My son's changing attitude doesn't always settle well with this Mama, yet I must remember my present reactions impact his future actions.
Galatians 4:19-20 (NIV)
My dear children, for whom I am again in the pains of childbirth until Christ is formed in you, how I wish I could be with you now and change my tone, because I am perplexed about you!
This morning when I walked into the kitchen, I noticed the top of a plastic container, storing brownies I baked, was not closed completely. I then opened the refrigerator door and noticed the container holding chicken I cooked did not have its top on securely either. There was no doubt in my mind; the culprit was my husband. His name was written all over the containers. He knows cooking is one of my least favorite things to do, so you would think he would help me preserve the food I labored over. Hearing the tops snap as I properly closed them made me feel better. I smiled as if I had saved the food from the world. At that moment, a scripture came to mind about guarding my heart (Proverbs 4:23).
The highway of the upright avoids evil; he who guards his way guards his life.
|It’s easy for a Mother to feel defeated, frustrated, and irritated about things going on in the home, yet we can take those same irritating items and use them to build our character and strengthen us where we are weak. We have a choice to be happy or unhappy in our circumstances. We can either cry over spilled milk or wipe it up and keep going. What can we do about anything? Nothing! We have to learn to go with the flow, to maintain our peace, and remember the joy of the Lord is our strength. Whatever you are faced with today, remember…don’t let it ruffle your feathers. Just go with the flow and KNOW we are promised perfect peace in the midst of our chaotic and challenging days! Go forth and go with the flow!|
|This Labor Day weekend, my family spent time with a family we met four years ago. They moved away, so it was great reconnecting with them. At the time we met, I was in the military and my husband stayed home with the children while the other Mother stayed home with her children and her husband worked – he was in the military also.|
Over the weekend, we found out our roles completely made a 180 degree turn. I’m now at home with my children and my husband works and she works outside the home and her husband recently retired. Realizing this was a comfort to me because I often felt she thought I was being unsociable because when I came home from work, I didn’t feel like socializing after being around people all day. Actually, I didn’t have time to socialize because my real job didn’t begin until I got home. On the other hand, she was at home all day and was ready for a break by the time her husband came home from work – she needed to get some time away from the house. We shared the common role of Motherhood, yet we were different. I’m so grateful we are still in each other’s lives and still accept one another for who we are. We better understand how the other feels. Too often, Mothers judge each other on what we see and not what we know. Until you’ve walked in another’s shoes, there is no room to judge or voice an opinion. Acceptance of each other as Mothers can’t be spoken of enough. We are one and have the power to change the world if we come together, yet until we learn to love and accept one another, we will never be as strong as God intended us to be.
Each Monday morning, the Lord strengthens my faith in Him as I sit at my computer wondering what words He’ll give me to share. I never know what the Monday Meditation will be until I begin typing. It isn’t something I plan weeks or days in advance, it’s an on the spot revelation for me as it is for you. It’s mind-blowing for me to experience the “living waters” of God flow through me. This morning the Lord took this living water depiction into my position as a Mother. Some mornings I look around my home and wonder how in the world I’ll do what needs to be done or even if I’ll do what needs to be done. I recall working outside the home and wondering the same thing. It doesn’t matter where you are or what you do, there is work to be done and it’s usually more than we care to recognize. It’s true, a woman’s work is never done and everyday is a labor day, yet instead of focusing on never-ending tasks, we can focus on the never-ending living waters flowing through us. There are days we can’t seem to get going, yet when we acknowledge and allow the living waters to flow freely, our strength, energy, and power are renewed. We are refreshed and others around us are refreshed by watching the power of a living God at work. This sounds good and today I will be put to the test of my words. After enjoying a fun-filled weekend of frolic with friends, today won't be a relaxing day as I intended, yet a Labor Day full of...labor. So, today and everyday packed with labor, let's remember to surrender to God and allow His living waters to flow freely!
There is more encouragement for our Single Mothers! Visit Sherri Speaks and read her candid article titled, "Frankly, I Felt Like Giving Up!"
John 7:38 (NIV)
“Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him."
|Dear Heavenly Father,|
Thank you for this day. Thank you for access to your throne in the name of Jesus. Thank you for waking me this morning. I'm tired, Lord and I'm asking you to fill me with your Spirit. Fill my thoughts, my emotions, my mind, body, and soul with your Holy Spirit. Have your way with me and help me to be Christ-controlled throughout the day. Give me patience and understanding with my children and help me to love my husband unconditionally. Give me strength, energy, and power this day as I walk in love, speak in love, and act in love for your sake. I love you, Lord. In Jesus' name I pray, amen.
|My Father jokes about me saying "I love me" when I was a little girl. The family was saying who else in the family they loved and I said I loved me. Well, if a woman didn't love herself, she'd be in bad shape. This morning is one of those mornings when I need to truly pour into myself. I'm tired, hormones are raging, children are wanting, and husband is needing (smile). Just as we pour into others, women need to pour into themselves with love, encouragement, time, and a little pampering. Who else is going to make sure we get what we need? Right...nobody! When we take care of ourselves, we take care of others better. I love me!|
|I mentally renewed my vows at a wedding I attended this weekend as I witnessed a Catholic and Baptist coming together as one. With my husband sitting to my left and my mother sitting to my right, I reflected on how different my marriage was from my Mother’s. My husband and I share the same religion, which gives us common ground amid our many differences. My Mother is a believer, yet her husband, my Father, is not a religious man at all. They’ve been married for over 50 years and their common ground which has kept their marriage is love. To watch my parents interact with one another in spite of their obvious differences on several issues is incredible. It shouldn’t matter if a marriage has differences in politics, religion, child rearing, or money; God’s Word says love conquers all. We often allow simple irritations and disagreements to get in the way of what’s important in a marriage instead of allowing love to prevail. My Mother has shown nothing but complete love and humility as a wife – always putting her husband’s needs before her own. Even when she may be upset with her groom, her role as a compassionate, helpful, and sensitive wife never ends - I’ve seen it for myself. Her example of showing love when a husband isn’t lovable is incredible and a genuine witness to my sisters and me.|
Weddings are always a great time to assess our own marriage vows. This weekend’s wedding reminded me my love for Christ should be exhibited in everyday relationships, especially in my marriage. When I show love to my husband, I am showing love to Christ. When I am ugly towards my husband, I am being ugly to Christ. My display of love is a measurement of my love for Christ. This weekend, I renewed my vow to love my husband even when he is unlovable – in my actions and thoughts. Thoughts…OUCH! The question is…Do I really love Him?
|I have so much to do today, yet I'm okay with it! My attitude has everything to do with my accomplishments. I can choose to complain about every task ahead of me or JUST DO IT and be thankful for the ability to do what needs to be done. Complaining will only sour my disposition and my attitude and little will get done.|
I arose early and communed with my Heavenly Father and I have perfect peace. I have four cakes to bake for a friend’s family funeral, bills to pay (one in person), clothes to wash and pack for the family for an out of town trip, a gift to purchase for a wedding, school work to be done with my sons, and of course the house needs to be cleaned – as always. I’ve set the tone in my heart, mind, and my home. Soft worship music is playing, the children are still sleeping, a cake is in the oven baking, a load of laundry is washing, tea is brewing for a later break, and my spirit is at peace. God is awesome – He just wants us to seek His help and He is waiting to bless us. I thank God for the gift of peace – the Prince of Peace which sustains me as a woman, a wife, and a mother!!
|Yesterday, I decided the family would have a no television and no playstation day, so all day there was no electronic equipment to compete with. The boys were forced to find other things to do and they realized they can survive without a screen in front of them. Although they are limited to only a few hours of playstation and t.v. a day, it takes away from the family. Can you imagine living back in the day when there was no t.v.? The family sat in front of the radio! What did they do before radio? It's amazing how the home environment changes when your eyeballs aren't glued to a screen. Not only did we spend more time together, we had fun. I usually exercise in the evenings, just dancing in my living room (no gym fees) and the boys joined me last night. We danced for hours and needless to say, I slept like a rock. They had me doing moves I didn't know my body could still do. I wish I had the power to say 'no t.v.' more often, yet we know who rules the remote control!!! Anyway, it was great and maybe I can make a motion to have no t.v. night once a week. It's great not having to compete with the t.v., to spend quality time with your family!|
|My babies are nine and eleven and I will move mountains to protect them! As Mothers, we naturally guard our babies, regardless of age, and we’re ready to defend them from all harm and danger. We must remember our children are susceptible to danger every minute of every day. The enemy is continually on the prowl to attack their minds and hearts – he’s always on his job! As we embark upon another school year, our children will be confronted with many challenges and we must be on our job! Just as we are ready to guard and protect in the flesh, we must stay ready to guard and protect our children spiritually. We can’t afford to become complacent in our prayers – children may be out of sight while in school, yet can’t be out of mind. My children are not excluded from this because they are home schooled. Although they only attend class outside the home once a week, the enemy will find other crafty avenues to attack, which is more reason to be on guard. Our children’s attacks will come in many concealed forms, so we must be aggressive in the fight by praying fervently, praising God regardless of upcoming school issues, and teaching them to call on their Heavenly Father for themselves – they have a parent with them at all times! God promised to give us strength, so our children need to know they are equipped to endure their challenges. They need to know God is with them every minute of the day no matter what happens. He will give them the power to persevere! Let’s stay diligent in the fight for our babies! The beginning of the school year is a good reason for special prayer; yet also a reminder our children, whether school aged or not, are targets everyday of the year and we must continually fight for our babies!|
I come to you, in the name of Jesus, thanking you for the children you've placed in my care. Thank you for the reminder to continually lift them up in prayer to protect them from the traps of the enemy. I ask you to protect them from dangers seen and unseen. Protect them and keep them in your care. Surround them with encouraging friends and loving teachers. Please guard their hearts and minds from unclean spirits and remind them of your love for them. Thank you for the opportunity to be their Mother and thank you for trusting me to love, nurture, and pray for them daily. I love you, Lord. Please give me the strength to endure this new school year and to praise you regardless of the situations you have planned for our family. I want to trust, lean, and depend on you only. Have mercy, Lord. Have mercy on me and thank you for allowing me to stand in your grace. Thank you in advance for all you've ever done for me and all you are doing right now. In your son's name I pray, amen.
|I can be quite controlling and when I am, I deny God opportunities to show me His awesome power and His love for me. Trying to be Superwoman, Supermom, and Superwife takes away from the Supernatural power of God in my life. He waits for me every morning to show me just how great He is and how I can be used by Him, but I must first let go of the reigns of my life. Once I truly surrender my thoughts of control, God will be able to place some super on my natural. Do I really think I have control of anything? Do I really think I am raising my children? Do I really think I'm loving my husband in my own power? God must laugh sometimes at how self sufficient a woman tries to be - trying to meet the needs of everybody without His help in our daily life. Hmmm...this may be the reason women stay tired, frustrated, and dissatisfied - we try to live without His power. We try to handle things on our own, yet when things don't go right, He is there to pick up the pieces - again. Thank you, Lord for this day! Fill me with your holy power! Fill my thoughts and emotions with your Spirit. Take complete control of me and have your way this day!|
|Sometimes I wonder if my sons get tired of being with me all day. They seem to always want to be under me. Hmmm…Yesterday, the family went to the store and we split up - one of the boys went with their Father and the other went with me. I wanted to say, “Go with your Father, aren’t you tired of me?” I didn’t say a word because obviously he was where he wanted to be. I thought maybe he was just looking out for my feelings and didn’t want me to be alone. I would not have minded being alone at all! I should be thankful for their desire to want to be near me because I know one day another woman will capture their attention and they will be gone. I will be expecting phone calls and waiting for visits while trying to recapture the ‘good ole days’ when I had my sons all to myself. Yes, these moments I sometimes smother with my selfishness, are precious and just the thought of my babies leaving me makes me miss them already. Who said you don’t miss your water til your well runs dry?|
|While washing dishes last night, I kept looking onto the back porch where my three men were eating dinner and playing dominoes. What a blessing to have a loving home environment. I began to feel an overwhelming sense of thankfulness as I prayed for them. I’m so blessed to be able to recognize the blessings my family holds because I haven’t always felt this way. I haven’t always looked at my children and felt love. I haven’t always looked at my husband as a gift. Thank you, God for another chance to recognize the blessings in my family. Thank you for allowing me to see them with your eyes. Thank you for allowing me to feel a portion of the love you feel for them. Thank you for giving me the desire to nurture and care for your children. What an amazing emotion we are blessed to experience...being a Mother! Women definitely have God’s favor - He chose us to be the caretakers of the home. Now, tomorrow when I wake up, I may not feel this way, so I’m living in the moment and thanking God for THIS moment in time! Thank God for my family and thank God for this new day - another chance to recognize the blessings my family holds!|
|I read a lot of emails from mothers feeling inadequate and insecure as a Mother. All we can do is our best – nothing more! It helps to not compare ourselves to one another and accept yourself for who you are as a wife and Mother. Do only what works for your home – your family – your children – your husband and not what another woman is doing in her home. Every home is different and runs differently. Mothers are the same, yet quite different. We all have different personalities, ideas, and thoughts about mothering, yet we all have a home to keep, children to raise, and some of us a husband to help. Accepting each other as Mothers will definitely help everyone on our Motherhood journey! None of us are perfect and when you really think about it, we are nothing and can do nothing without the help of God. I remind myself daily that God is raising my children THROUGH me! His love within me is what keeps me loving my husband and my children, therefore, I can’t take credit for anything! I’m just making myself available to be used.|
|Hmmm…my nine year old actually thought he was doing me a favor this morning when he told me he took the trash out for me. Was it really for me? I guess it was since I usually have to ask someone to take it out. Hmmm…does he think it’s my job or was he just letting me know he took the initiative to take it out. Hmmm…does he think it’s my job to do everything around the house? I think he does! Is it my job to do everything around the house or is it my job to make sure everything gets done by delegating? Is this why nothing gets done unless I ask someone to do it? Oh my goodness! I must be a Mother! “Sweetie, thank you for taking the trash out for Mama! I appreciate you!” If you can’t beat em, join em!|
|I'm usually a very composed person while driving, yet this morning while driving home from an out of town wedding; I was a different person. I don't know why, yet I could hardly wait to get off the road. I was anxious and irritable...okay, I was just downright foul. I was acting like a toddler crying to get out of my carseat. I couldn't understand why this road trip was so different; yet my actions and conversation showed nothing but a spirit of discontent. The two hour drive felt like a cross country trip and I didn't like it. Through all of my ugliness, I kept hearing one of my favorite scriptures of contentment over and over in my head. Yes, the Word of God is powerful - it found its way through my muddy thoughts. I thought of what my rush was to get home. Surely I wasn’t rushing home to wash dirty laundry and cook dinner! Not me! I came to the conclusion there was no reason at all - I just didn't like where I was or what I was doing at the moment.|
So often, I find myself in situations and places I'd rather not be in and have to remind myself that where I am that very moment is where God wants me. Being the self-absorbed person I can be, I also have to remind myself that my uncomfortable places in time are not always about me. God may place me somewhere to be a blessing to someone else and vice versa! I continued to have subtle thoughts on contentment and realized as long as I am in the flesh on the planet Earth, I will never be completely content as God desires me to be. This world is not my home and I shouldn't get comfortable in my worldly surroundings, yet while I'm here; I might as well go with the flow in whatever situation I'm in. So often I fight what is going on in my life forgetting God is teaching me, molding me, pruning me, grooming me, BLESSING me! Okay, okay, okay, so the long drive home was needed because obviously I needed a looong lesson in being content and sitting in the car this day in time was God's perfect timing to teach me! Thank you, Lord and forgive me once again for fighting your will in my life!
Philippians 4:12 (NIV)
I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.
|Yesterday I felt like I was in the fog all day! I just couldn't think straight and I have a new appreciation for waking up in my RIGHT MIND! If I didn't have my hormones to blame it on, I'd think I was truly losing my mind. I went to the grocery store and left the check book, my husband asked me to do a few things and I forgot to do them, I was late everywhere I went - AUUUUGH!|
Thank God for my sons because I used them tremendously!! They were my right and left hand and my brain. God is definitely a KEEPER - he kept my mind on yesterday and Lord, I need you again today, tomorrow and every day!
I have alot of things going on right now and it's probably brain overload. I hate busyness, yet this is a busy season of my life and I pray it won't last forever. I have several projects requiring my attention, yet I'm trying to keep my family my priority, which is a MUST! Nothing is more important than family... NO-THING!
Although I felt I was in the fog in a negative way, I have to remember what a friend told me fog stood for ---Favor Of God!