Posts tagged raising babies
Posts tagged raising babies
“There are two voices you usually hear, Mama.”
She is six, and loves to talk about a mile a minute when you get her in a car.
“And, God usually gets your attention first and then tells you what to do.”
“Yes, mama. God gets your attention. Kinda how he got Paul’s attention to keep him from killing Christians. Well, maybe not exactly like how He got Paul’s attention with the blinding light, but He still does.” (Acts 9)
I almost had to pull over. She was absolutely speaking Truth, and I get really excited when that happens.
“He gets you to stop doing something bad by giving you that feeling that something isn’t right. Even when Satan tells you to lie, God tells you not to. His voice is bigger than Satan’s. Satan is a bully.”
I pulled over.
“I like when God tells me to do good things most of all. Like when he tells me to help someone on the playground. Or when He told me to help my friend learn to tie her shoes. I like when He tells me to do good things. It feels good when I do what God tells me.”
Deep breaths of a proud mama with a spreading smile.
“When I took that toy I wasn’t supposed to, Mama, God told me not to. But I chose not to listen to Him. That made me feel so bad that I didn’t listen. But then I felt better when I took it back and said I was sorry. That was God.”
Tears in my eyes at the sight of the Holy Spirit in my baby girl.
Following the Holy Spirit does not have to be hard. Why do we make it? It is easy and we make it complicated when we serve our flesh rather than our spirit (Romans 8). Trusting Jesus like a child is what Jesus himself preached (Mark 10:15). The Holy Spirit is with us always and guides us if we choose to listen and obey (John 14:26).
Walk with God.
“Then the church throughout Judea, Galilee and Samariaenjoyed a time of peace and was strengthened. Living in the fear of the Lord and encouraged by the Holy Spirit, it increased in numbers,” (Acts 9:31).
We talk a lot about superheros in our house. In fact, it is part of our everyday life these days. Who is better? Who runs faster? Who is cooler? Who has the most power? In fact, the everlasting conversation about Marvel Comic Superheros versus DC Comic Justice League Superheros lives on and on and on.
My 8 year old in his Ironman mask and Justice League pajamas said, ” I don’t get it. Batman has no superpowers. He uses tools and that makes him a superhero. Ironman is a normal guy (questionable normalcy point here folks) but he puts on his suit or uses his suit as a tool like Batman does and he is a super hero. Why does that make them superheros if they have no actual powers themselves?” Great point, son.
His dad and I jumped at that opportunity to explain this one. His dad first, “That makes Batman even cooler. He can just be himself and use the tools that he has been given.” Our son protested again. “But, Dad, what is his superpower?”
Enter, Holy Spirit.
We are all just normal guys faced with impossible dilemmas to conquer. God sets us apart by giving us incredible superpowers through the Holy Spirit. Powers which enable all of us who believe in Christ Jesus to act supernaturally through the Advocate. To be heroes in our everyday life to those around us by helping the weak, easing the pain, soothing the suffering of anyone who is in need. We use the everyday tools or gifts God has given us to partner with Him. We need only to be open to the filling of the Holy Spirit by seeking Him wholeheartedly.
Are you a Batman, a regular guy who becomes something extraordinary when you use the tools available to you? Do you rely on the Holy Spirit to equip you daily? Do you hold a sister’s hand when her marriage is falling apart, when her child is sick? Do you clean her house when she can’t? Do you bring a meal to feed her family so she doesn’t have to think about it? Do you pray for her before she asks you? These are the acts of superheroes who partner with God. These are the acts of available sisters filled with Holy Spirit.
Look around you, sisters. What simple act of heroism can you perform today? This world needs more Batmans.
“Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. Anyone who does not love me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me. “All this I have spoken while still with you. But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. “You heard me say, ‘I am going away and I am coming back to you.’ If you loved me, you would be glad that I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I. I have told you now before it happens, so that when it does happen you will believe,” (John 14: 23-29) NIV.
I am always the first to miss the obvious. It just escapes me. Sometimes, I am so taken by the little things that the great big elephant standing in front of me just goes unnoticed. For example, I never see the seasons changing. They take me by surprise every time mainly because like many of you I don’t like change. The seasons of change in my children’s lives, the seasons of growth in my marriage, the seasons of maturity in my walk with the Lord all tend to sneak up on me like a ninja, and I feel unprepared.
My youngest is changing by the second. His world is blossoming and much too quickly. To be honest, I would much rather run from it than face the changes that lie ahead. I know; I hear you. How bad could it be? Changes like complete sentences that tell me what he needs, big boy underwear, and a regular bed. Those things are all coming within the next year. Good things. Still, I cannot bring myself to even ponder taking the crib down for the last time. Ever. My first response is always to see what I will be missing and not the blessings that lie ahead. Ecclesiastes 3:1 states, “there is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.” Still, transitioning from one season to another for me tends to look like a fit throwing toddler rather than anything resembling grace.
As I walk through the rest of my summer adventure, around every turn I yearn for a time out. I beg God for it. Please Lord, just stop time from marching forward, especially in the lives of my children and in the life of my father. I just want to stop and enjoy this season right now without the threat of the next season clouding my vision. Thankfully, I hear the gentle, firm voice of the Holy Spirit coming through the pages of Ecclesiastes.
“I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live. That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God,” (12-13).
I can not hold either of them back, my children or my parent. There is a time for them to be born and a time for them to die. Finding satisfaction in each and every season is a gift from God. A gift intended for each of us. A gift I intend to embrace and accept.
There is a promise that comes in Ecclesiastes as well as the lesson that it is pointless to try and change the created order of life. The promise is this:
“He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart,” (3:11).
Through this season of growth for every child and parent, I know God Almighty has made it intentionally beautiful and purposeful. There is a purpose that glorifies God in each season. He has also set eternity through Christ Jesus in the heart of all of us, including my children and my parents. We will enjoy this life for as long as He gives us and eternity in His presence. This enables me to take the next step forward in our life cycle whether it be to scatter stones or gather them, mourn or dance. We are not alone in any season for He stands with us.
As my summer adventure takes on the final cycle, I ask you to be patient with me here at P31Wife as I take every moment captive, take a detour, from my regular schedule of postings, and enjoy the beauty that God has intended for me and my precious family. I pray that you are as taken with the beauty of the season that you are in at this very moment as I am. I pray that you are seeing beauty and appreciating the gifts that God has given you as well in this season of your lives. I pray that you can loosen the grip you have on the ticking clock and love every moment independently and collectively as a season. Whether that be weeping or laughing, I pray that you see and hear God in every step.
“She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue.
She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness,” (Proverbs 31: 26-27).
PS. For those of you taking the Facebook Challenge, I applaud your efforts and success. I have learned much and continue to learn as I go. I am doing well in some aspects and terrible in others. One thing I noticed almost immediately was how absent-mindedly I check FB. Sometimes, it is completely without thought. I deleted the FB icon from my smart phone, and that allowed me a second or two to think about it.
Overall, I feel like the Challenge has been a success for me, even though I have failed it miserably. I am more self aware of how much time I am on FB, and my time is more purpose full. I also have noticed how much I don’t need to post on FB. It does get in the way of how I communicate with the Lord. Because of the challenge, I have refrained from posting many things that normally I would have. Those things were communicated elsewhere, and many to the Lord. This has blessed me richly.
The Challenge ends August 11th. I am praying for you and that you are blessed through it. P31Wife
By the time you read this post this morning, I will be driving to my father’s house in Oregon with my three children. Driving to spend some precious time with my Dad who is in the middle of a grueling battle with Cancer. My dad who all my life was easily described as one of the toughest men a man has ever met. He is a man’s man. He is a determined man. God made him that way. Praise, God.
Hopefully, by the time you have read this, I am still being patient with my children who will have been in the car for far too long. Prayerfully, I will have been love to them all day no matter the circumstances. Prayerfully.
We all make journeys that are filled with trials. Joy and happiness can be found in the trials too. I have been trying to remind myself of this all week. My children are making memories that will travel with them all their lives. I am choosing to be love to them along the way. Sometimes, it has to be a choice, even when you have been in the car for too many hours.
Every Monday, I share something that inspires me on Pinterest. Something that keeps me looking towards the Father. Something that makes me stop and think about the Father’s love and all the blessings in my life, and I like to share them with you. I wrote the scriptures of this pin down on index cards and clipped them together on a binder ring. These verses of love will be riding shotgun, right next to my patience and smile. Hopefully, I will remember to pack them too.
Happy Monday, sweet friends. Don’t forget to be love along the way of your journey no matter the trial. Your legacy depends upon it.
“She is clothed with strength and dignity;
she can laugh at the days to come.,” (Proverbs 31:25).
photo credit can be found here.
Recently during the five-thousandth viewing of The Empire Strikes Back, my almost-eight-year-old-son said, “Oh my gosh, why does 3PO worry so much?” Music to this mama’s ears.
C-3PO is a protocol droid designed to serve humans in the Star Wars saga. While a loyal servant to his Master, he worries a lot. This got me to thinking about how much I worry, or not, and if my kids pick up on that. One thing I know, if I do it chances are they will learn it and model it. I don’t want that.
What does the Bible say about worry?
Worry is telling God He is not in control. Trusting God through prayer eliminates worry, and that’s what God expects of us. Anything less is sin.
As I write this though, my dad is having a serious surgery to remove a deadly disease. His battle with Cancer has strengthened my relationship with the Lord, and increased my faith, proof that God brings beauty out of ashes. Still, I battle
worry sin almost by the minute during extreme stress. I do not want to disobey God, and I do not want to be a C3P0. God gives us reason after reason to trust Him. I constantly remind myself of these things when I tend to worry:
The Bible tells us to “give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you,” (1 Peter 5:7). Thankfully, my Master knows my needs before I do. And while I struggle to remember this, I am grateful for the reminder that he cares deeply for me! Not only do I want to obey the Lord, I want to lead my children by example. Worry only creates more harm. Prayer creates trust. How can you beat that even if you are a droid?
“Her children arise and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
“Many women do noble things,
but you surpass them all.” (Proverbs 31:28-29)
Every Monday, I share something that inspires me on Pinterest. Something that keeps me looking towards the Father. Something that makes me stop and think about the Father’s love and all the blessings in my life, and I like to share them with you. This week, I have six pins from Pinterest to share with you. They made me laugh, cry, be inspired, and reminded me how lucky I am to be in da mamahood. I hope they inspire you too.
1. I love every single habit The Stressed Mom listed here. I do all of these things but not all of these things consistently. Must. Be. Consistent. Check out the site, lots of great suggestions. I am really hoping the laundry suggestion sinks in. “She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks.” Proverbs (31:17)
2. I am a
sappy loving mama. This pin from Team Studer reminded me of just how important my role is as mother of my two boys. I set the tone for them to love their wives. (Which reminds me of this great read.) They are going to be wonderful husbands and fathers. I know this to be true because each and every day God reminds me that every little thing I am doing is for Him and him and him. He has my boys’ best interests at heart. “When it snows, she has no fear for her household; for all of them are clothed in scarlet. ” Proverbs (31: 21)
3. This chart from busykidshappymom.org is a great reminder for different love languages that your child responds to. I like it because it gives me ideas of ideas of relating to them specifically. I love the book The Five Love Languages, and this chart is based on it. I think I will print it and put it up in my laundry room as a good reminder this summer. “She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come,” (Proverbs 31:25).
4. I read this post from 71Toes and adopted one of this mom’s tips. It is my favorite! I write a little initial on my kids fingertips when they leave for school. The initial is based on a trait I love about them or something they do especially well for God. For example, I write you have a wonderful smile “S” and you love to smile at people you don’t know yet, encouraging them to make new friends. Or, God thinks you are awesome “A” because he fearfully and wonderfully made you. I don’t do this everyday, only on days I think they need a little boost. Some days, they ask me for it. Every day that I do it, they come home and ask me to write it again because they have rubbed it off. Apparently, they “looked at it so much.” You can never encourage your kids to much. “She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue.” Proverbs (31:26)
5. Really, nuff said. “Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her” Proverbs (31:28). :)
6. As a mama of boys, and a spectacular little girl who plays like a boy, there is never a shortage of Star Wars Legos hanging around. I did not take this pic, but I have made Jack Sparrow walk the plank. One day, the little Lego guys will be replaced with other things. I want to love these days and squeeze every ounce of joy out of them. Soon the seasons will change, without warning, and I will be missing them- the seasons and my little lovies. “She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness,” Proverbs (31:27).
Love to you, my friends. Happy Monday.
“Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.” Proverbs 31:30
I have this wonderful, glorious friend that God blessed me with. She listens to my prayers for my kids, encourages me in my marriage, points my fears to the Father, and sometimes breathes some life back in to my weary, lifeless bones. I love many things about her. On more than one ordinary occasion, she will turn to me and say one simple sentence, “You are a good mom.” I love that!
She has taught me much about service. She herself has 26 years of service mentoring children through AWANA. (If you don’t know what AWANA is, follow the link and get your kids there asap. You will never regret it.) She encourages me in every aspect of ministry I have ever been involved in and by physically helping wherever she can. I am blessed beyond measure for her wise counsel and faithful mentoring. I have sounded a million ideas off of her and talked through many, many life situations. She patiently listens, offers encouragement, and keeps me accountable with biblical scripture and godly advice.
Paul tell us in Titus 2:3-4 ”Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.” My friend leads by this example. I love that about her the most.
In those special times when my friend tells me that I am a good mom, I hear the Holy Spirit echoing His encouragement. Offering me love and affection and spurring me on to faith and good works with my children. We all need someone in our lives who has done this before, and we all need to be someone in another’s life. Pray for a mentor. I know I did. Pray to be a mentor. I am too. Scripture doesn’t politely ask us to consider it. Scripture demands it. Older women “are to teach what is good, and so train the young woman.” We are all the younger and older woman in one season of our life or another. We have wonderful opportunities on either side of mentoring. We must only take them.
Listen to the Holy Spirit when He offers the guidance and friendship of another in your life. It will bless you beyond your best prayers. And, please, encourage another mama. She may be waiting to hear some simple words herself.
“A wife of noble character who can find?
She is worth far more than rubies.” Proverbs 31:10
Check out this etsy shop if you would like to purchase this cute mug.
First, let me just tell you straight away, I am once again a mom with a toddler. Oh that hurts to say, since I would much rather my baby boy stay—a baby boy. There is a six year difference between my oldest son and my youngest, and I once again have found myself chasing a toddler. I am happy to say, it is not as overwhelming as it was the first go round. I am remembering some things that once caused great thought and sometimes trepidation but now bring me joy.
I made a top five list of things to remind myself or any other mama-homey who finds herself with a toddler to love:
As I once again prepare my house for a curious mind, prepare my mind for teaching to share and not to bite, and prepare my spirit to shepherd another young man for Christ, I pray and rejoice. God has surely blessed me to mother another little brown-eyed boy who will one day be a Godly man. What a wonderful season of life this is. It does not last long, I want to enjoy it. I am surely blessed.
If you are a mother of a toddler or two or three, I pray God’s blessing on you and your babies as you minister to those sweet little faces. What an honor God has blessed you with.
“She gets up while it is still night;
she provides food for her family,” Proverbs 31:15.
I took this quiz from Pinterest with my son (7) and daughter (5). I interviewed them separately, and surprisingly, I was a little nervous. It felt like a bit of a report card when I started. But I quickly remembered how much I love their little hearts. They make me so proud. I am a happy mama.
1. Something mom always says to you?
son- “I love you.”
daughter- “I love you.”
2. What makes mom happy?
daughter- “By listening to you.”
3. What makes mom sad?
son- “Not seeing us.”
daughter- “When we get sick.”
4. How does mom make you laugh?
son- “My jokes.”
5. What was mom like as a child?
son-“Went to college.”
daughter- “Played with your friends.”
6. How old is mom?
7. How tall is mom?
daughter- “14 ft.”
8. What is mom’s favorite thing to do?
son-“Be with us.”
daughter- “Play with her children.”
9. What does mom do when you’re not around?
son-“Cry. Miss us.”
10. If mom becomes famous, what will it be for?
son- “making wreaths.”
daughter- “Teaching kids.”
11. What is mom really good at?
son-“Taking care of your children.”
daughter-“Being a mom.”
12. What is mom not very good at?
daughter-“Reaching high stuff.”
13. What does mom do for her job?
daughter-“Stay home with us.”
14. What is mom’s favorite food?
son-“Fruits and vegetables.”
daughter-“Weight watchers ice cream.”
15. What makes you proud of mom?
son-“Taking good care of me.”
daughter-“Being a good mom.”
16. What cartoon character would mom be?
son-“Kermit, because he is really nice.”
daughter-“Miss Piggy because she is pretty and smart. But she is a muffet (yes, muffet) and not a cartoon.”
17. What do you and mom do together?
18. How are you and mom the same?
son-“We love each other.”
19. How are you and mom different?
son-“I am a boy. She is a girl.”
daughter-“You are bigger and I am smaller.”
20. How do you know mom loves you?
son-“Because you act like it and you’re very kind and you always say I love you.”
daughter-‘Because you say it and you make me feel better.”
21. Where is mom’s favorite place to go?
daughter-“To a restaurant.”
Every Monday, I share something that inspires me on Pinterest. Something that keeps me looking towards the Father. Something that makes me stop and think about the Father’s love and all the blessings in my life, and I like to share them with you. This questionnaire made me think about how blessed I am to be a mom. I love their responses. I love that they know I love them. I love that they say I show them! I love that they have no idea how tall I am but can nail down how old I am! Well, maybe not so much. Wink. Wink.
Being a mom is the greatest, hardest, most rewarding job I have ever had. I was made to be their mom. I thank God for that every day. He has blessed me beyond measure. How about you my mama friends? Have you seen anything on Pinterest that made you think of all the blessings in your life?
“She watches over the affairs of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.” Proverbs 31:27
When my oldest boy made the switch from his private Christian school to public school, it was not an easy transition for a few different reasons. Even with his outgoing personality, the transition was difficult for him.
During the summer, our family was at the new school riding bikes and getting acquainted with the campus. The school custodian was there and my ever-friendly son had a question for him. “Hi. Nice to meet you. Why is it that we can’t worship God at your school?” My boy has his daddy’s flair for subtlety. As the adults picked up their jaws, the custodian laughed and said “that’s a very good question! It is called separation of church and state.” As he kindly explained why we don’t worship God is school, my son interrupted, “But that doesn’t mean we can’t pray and bring our Bibles. We can still worship God if we want to. God is still here. I will just bring my Bible.” He also has his daddy’s sense of cutting through the fluff to the heart of the matter.
My boy packed his Bible for school the very 1st day. He told us, “you never know when you are going to need it.” This made his dad and I very happy. On the 96th day of school, my son shared the gospel and his Bible with one of his peers at school. He shared scripture that he had memorized (John 3:16) and that night we brought our young friend to AWANA. It was completely natural to my son, like breathing. I heard about it only through a couple of the teachers at school. To be honest, when I asked my son if anything cool happened at school that day he said no. I had to press him to get the story out of him.
We only have about 31 days of school left and he still takes his Bible to school everyday. I may never know how many he has shared Christ with at school. I do know that I love how he answers Divine appointments with a natural ease. Children have a dependence upon God and a faith that is unhindered. They do not care about reactions, they care about Truth. Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these,” (Matthew 19:14). Sometimes, I think I learn far more from my son than he does from me.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16