Category Archives: Faith

Shine Through

This week my husband spoke at his first leaders conference. Despite being nervous he did an excellent job. Later we talked about steps he could take to be more comfortable on stage when he expressed this very humble concern. He wants to be comfortable enough to effective but he doesn’t want to be so comfortable that he presents himself more than he shares what God is using him to say.

As I prayed and thought about this conversation I realized, not presenting yourself in any situation is very hard to do. Especially with parenting. Our children know more about us than anyone else, save our spouses. They know what makes us happy or sad. They know if we have a temper or if we use harsh language. Our kids see us at our most comfortable, in our most vulnerable state. They should see through us, the love of Christ.

Deuteronomy 6:4-9 “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. “And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. 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. 
Our love for God should invade our lives so much that it seeps into our conversations with our children, that it’s evident in our dealings with them and around them. They should know our love for God and more importantly Gods love for them. 
Father, 
We love you. Thank you for being the wonderful parent you are and for showing us how to be parents through your word. Shine through us and touch the hearts of our children, use us to show them your unfailing love. We love you, we thank you, and we can’t do this without you. Amen.
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Take a nap

Some days Summer can get away with not taking a nap; other days she NEEDS a nap. She gets so frustrated, everything makes her upset, it gets to the point sometimes where she is too mad to sleep. Isn’t this how we get?

We get so frustrated with our finances, work, family, or even church. We get so overwhelmed that everything is an irritant and offense. We get so emotionally wound up that we don’t know where or how to spiritually calm ourselves down enough to rest. 

Well we as parents need to find time to rest and recharge so we can be better parents, so we can pull the all nighters, so we can clean the epic messes and dispel the craziest tantrums.
Matthew 11:28 Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 
Rest is a relaxing period free from exertion. In the above verse Jesus tells us we can get rest through Him. Sometimes these days are a labor, they even feel heavy at times. Jesus tells us to come to Him. What a relief to find rest in Christ Jesus. So when you start getting overwhelmed and easily offended, take a few steps back, find a way of escape and go take a spiritual nap. 
Thank you father for the sabbath. Thank you for reminding us of the importance of resting in you. Thank you for the beautiful children you have entrusted us with and the wonderful lessons they bring. In Jesus name, amen. 

Let it go God will Multiply it

Summer was on my phone playing a game but my phone had a low battery. I plugged in my charger near her table so she could sit and play on my phone while it charged. However, getting the phone from her hands to plug it in was a battle. If she’d just let me plug it into a power source, she could play for hours; without it she had minutes. 

It made me think, “What am I not giving back to God?” Sometimes in life we hold on so hard to friendships, relationships, jobs, money and even our time. God doesn’t take anything from us unless its to bless us, but letting go can also be a blessing to those around us. 
In John 6 Jesus feeds the 5,000 and has food left over because a little boy gave what little he had. This action not only blessed the boy but those around him. Further in John 19 Jesus gave his life for millions and has blessed is tremendously.
So if you feel God prompting you to let something go, or if someone in your life is leaving you behind. It’s ok. Let go, plug into the source and expect something great!
God,
Thank you for being our ever present power source. Thank you for the things you have removed and added to our lives. We trust you and we live out our lives in anticipation. Following your word and looking for your lessons and blessings in our everyday lives. You are amazing and we love you. In Jesus name, Amen.

Annoyances or strengths?

Yesterday my husband and I talked about our differences and though they cause annoyances at times they are often a blessing. For example, I am very creative, Kristian is very efficient. Well, creativity is a process and being efficient doesn’t always yield my desired results. Creativity is also very spontaneous so Kristian doesn’t always know what to expect from me, which is frustrating for someone who doesn’t like surprises. These differences are a great blessing in our lives, family and marriage. I need security and knowing my husband is diligent and willing to go the extra mile provides me with a sense of security. It also gives security to our children because they know that daddy always comes home, and that he will drop everything and play with them. My creativity helps make our family fun. I love finding new ways to explore things with the kids and new approaches to teach them the things they need to know. 
This got me thinking, what are some things about the kids that are challenging but a blessing to our family? Summer is unrelentingly persistent. I know it’s redundant but if you met her you will agree, it fits. She in unwavering when she wants something. She makes us stop and analyze our interaction with God. She teaches us to stop and play, to color outside the lines and to dance in the grocery store aisles. She brings us such joy.
KJ is so calm and peaceful, no matter what. We’ve been having really rough nights so we haven’t been getting much sleep but when he wakes up and I go into his room he looks up at me and smiles. Teaching us though life gets hard, joy can prevail. At 4.5 mos old we are still learning his personality but he is a great blessing. Defiantly a calm in the midst of the storm of life. 
I just want to encourage you today to look at your child(ren)’s personality even the things that annoy you and how those traits bless your family. It’s not by accident your child is in your care. Acts 17:26 “And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings,” God picked you to care for them, he trusted you with their little souls to raise to be who they will be. 
Thank you God for these little people who come equity with such wonderful lessons of your love. Please continue to equip us with the knowledge of your word so we can use wisdom in raising our children. Please send people into our lives that will call out the best in us as people, parents, and your children. Help is be a blessing and to raise blessings. In Jesus name, amen. 

Forgiveness and children

Matthew 6:14-15 “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

I’ve never looked at forgiveness and thought of my children. However, today while correcting SJ, my two year old, God placed the above scripture on my heart. As wonderful as parenting is sometimes its easier to apply God’s word to our lives outside of our home then it is to raising our children.
It’s easy to have a rough night or long day then get an attitude especially when you find yourself saying the same thing over and over again. Or you may, like myself, wonder if your discipline would be more effective if you had an attitude or disaproving look to go with the correction but the bible tells us to train our children. We train them through our example and the way we forgive them and those around us will serve as a model for them to follow. 
I want God to forgive me quickly, I want Him to forget the offense and every time I fall I want His reaction to be as if I fell for the first time. This challenges our paitence, longsuffering and even kindness as parents. Afterall, forgiveness is the only thing in the bible where God action mirrors ours.

Just a Thought

Matthew 7:9-11 Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him! 
When i read this scripture I’m not only reminded of God’s love for me, but how lacking my love is as a parent. God loves us, and our children, so much that He sent His only son to die for us (John 3:16). Yet we look at interactions between our children and ourselves and compare them to our interactions with God. We as parents must always keep in mind that we are more likely to act like our children when relating to God, then we are to act like God when relating to our children.

God’s Grace for Parents

Yesterday I spent two hours on the phone with my mother in law. After comparing out childhoods and that of my husbands we came to the conclusion they weren’t “normal.” I then began to think, “I want to raise ‘normal’ kids. I want them to have balance between a fun and responsible childhood. How can I do that?” Then God reminded me of His grace.

One person who shows us God’s grace is Jesse. Jesse had eight sons. I’m sure he did his best will all of them; after all he raised strong men some of which served in the kings army. Samuel, the high priest, shows up at Jesse’s house and tells him he is there to find the next king. He than asks to see his sons. Jesse shows him the first seven.
1 Samuel 16:10-11 Thus Jesse made seven of his sons pass before Samuel. And Samuel said to Jesse, “The Lord has not chosen these.” And Samuel said to Jesse, “Are all the young men here?” Then he said, “There remains yet the youngest, and there he is, keeping the sheep.”And Samuel said to Jesse, “Send and bring him. For we will not sit down till he comes here.” 
I don’t think Jesse loved David any less than he did his other boys, he just did not consider him when the chance to be king was on the table. Jesse raised David as a shepherd. I imagine had he known David would be king he would have made different choices, but that’s where God’s grace comes in.
God did not need Jesse to train David on kingship. God was going to train him. If you continue reading 1 Samuel you will see God used life to teach David wisdom, resourcefulness and most importantly to trust him; but he did all this in the wilderness. Jesse, having taught David to be a shepherd, equip him to survive the wilderness. 
Due to his shepherd training David was able to defeat Goliath, he was able to lead and he was able to protect. God used Jesse to lay that foundation. 
When Samuel sees David and anoints him king, I imagine Jesse questioning David’s upbringing. This story, however, gives me peace because I know despite my children’s purpose, my responsibility is to do my best to lay a foundation, that God will use life experience, to build upon. 
Daddy, 
Thank you for the foundations that you are building through us in the lives of our children. Help us to read your word and to seek after your heart concerning your plans for them. Thank you for trusting us with such precious souls and help us to guide, instruct, and train them in your way. In Jesus name. Amen.