Tag Archives: Jesus

Fruit of the Spirit: Discovering Your Joy

Have you ever met a person that seemed no matter their circumstance to be full of joy? I have been accused of being that person. I say accused because I am not sure I am as full of joy as I might like to be or even should be. Perhaps it is all a process and all I can do is to press on and strive to be more like the one who has saved my soul. So today the wisdom I share with you is wisdom I am still learning. It is not my own wisdom that I seek to share, and I am writing to remind myself as much as anything else, today.

Discovering Your Joy

How To Discover Joy In Your Life

As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.” John 15: 9-11  Here we see Jesus instructing us to keep his commands and in doing so we will remain in his love. It is through him and his love that we discover joy and that our joy can be made complete.

To find out what Jesus commands of us all we must do is go to: Matthew 22: 36-40. “‘Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?’ Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”  It won’t always be easy to love your neighbor as yourself, but it will be worth it. Tough times will come and you may question how God could even be a loving God, and then you might even begin to wonder how you could love God when it doesn’t even feel like he loves you.

But he does love you. He loves you so much that he has something better in mind for you, for each of us. “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 So even though we live in this world that is broken and filled with pain and sin, God loves us enough to offer us a path to his salvation. All we need to do is accept Jesus.

 

It is through these three truths that we can begin to discover a deep and lasting joy. This is a joy that no one can steal from you. It will not be dependent on your circumstances, but rather you can radiate this joy even in the toughest of times.

 

***Please feel free to comment with any thoughts or questions. I welcome feedback. Thank you for visiting. Now if you have missed any of my prior posts here are the links just for you:  IntroductionLove Your GodLove Your Wives, Submitting To And Respecting Our Husbands, Love Your ChildrenLoving Your Neighbor, and What is Joy.***

 

Fruit of The Spirit: What is Joy?

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law” Galations 5:22

“But may the righteous be glad and rejoice before God; may they be happy and joyful.” Psalm 68:3

What is Joy

The Lord calls to his people and tells them to be joyful, to be full of joy, but what is joy? A simple search of the bible leads to 242 references to joy. Realizing this it can become rather overwhelming to dissect what is joy.

This can be further complicated with a simple search around the web.

Webster’s Dictionary defines joy as:

 

  1.  a:  the emotion evoked by well-being, success, or good fortune or by the prospect of possessing what one desires : delight b:  the expression or exhibition of such emotion :  gaiety
  2. a:  a state of happiness or felicity :  bliss
  3. a:  a source or cause of delight

 

DL Moody is quoted as saying, “Joy is love exalted; peace is love in repose; long-suffering is love enduring; gentleness is love in society; goodness is love in action; faith is love on the battlefield; meekness is love in school; and temperance is love in training.”

The more you dive in quotes the more complicated and messy it seems to get. A look at Websters or a Google search for quotes on joy seem to give the impression that joy is happiness. A look at the quote from DL Moody or even a look at all the various scripture verses containing joy seem to give another picture.

This other picture indicates joy is deeper, and more than a feeling.  It would indicate that the Lord is calling us to experience something deeper than a feeling. The Lord is calling us to a joy that radiates out from us no matter our circumstances, meaning even during times of trouble we will still be a joyful people. (James 1:2)

***When you think of joy what are some verses or quotes best exemplify joy? Or perhaps how would you best define joy?***

****As always feel free to share, but please link back to the original post. Here is last week’s post Loving Your Neighbor, if you missed it.****

 

 

 

Fruit of the Spirit: Love Your Children

(Disclaimer: This blog contains affiliate links.  Meaning I will get a small referral rate if you purchase after having clicked on the link. I will not endorse a product I do not believe in, so any endorsement on my part is purely my own.)

“Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged.” Colossians 3:21

 

“These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts.  Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.  Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates.”  Deuteronomy 6:6-9

 

“Children are a heritage from the Lord, offspring a reward from him.  Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are children born in one’s youth.  Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them.  They will not be put to shame when they contend with their opponents in court.”  Psalm 127:3-5

 Under the Sun - Fruit of the Spirit: Love Your Children

From these three verses it is clear what the Lord expects from parents. What is not clear is how we implement these truths. That there, is the beauty of the deal. There are many ways to raise your children in a Godly, loving home, and still seek after the truth of these three verses.

Whether you homeschool or send your children to the local school, you are still doing the best job you know how. Maybe instead you did CIO or maybe you co-slept. Maybe you used formula or maybe you were a mother who did extended breastfeeding. There is no winner and no loser. One parent is not better than the other. We are each doing the best job we know how to do, but still there are a few things that EVERY Christian parent should be seeking to do with their children.

Colossians 3:21 tells us though that no matter our choices we still need to speak love into the lives of our children. Our children have tender hearts. They are seeking love and approval. Clay Clarkson in his book, Educating the WholeHearted Child — Third Edition, says, “God has designed your children’s hearts to expect love from their parents. When they don’t receive familial and parental love, it is a kind of neglect of their spiritual and emotional nourishment, in the same way that not receiving food would neglect their physical nourishment. A child whose need for love is neglected will begin to close their heart and emotions out of self-protection.” See though you don’t have to embitter, as the bible says, or neglect their spiritual and emotional nourishment, as Clay describes it. Instead encourage them, express your love in words, hug them, and show them just how much you value them. Are your actions matching your words?

Deuteronomy 6:6-9 clearly expresses that we need to teach our children what the bible has to say to them. We can not do that though if first we are not seeking the knowledge ourselves. Live a life that you would be proud for your child to imitate. Are you spending time reading and learning from the Lord each day? Do praise and worship songs fill the air of your home? (They need not be the only songs, but are they given any air time?) Our children are aware if what we are preaching is matching up to the life we are leading. We don’t need to do everything perfectly, but we need to continue to grow in the Lord. Even in our mistakes they can learn much. But it doesn’t stop there. Are you spending time reading to them, and teaching them how to apply what they read to their lives? Guide them.  They need us to be an active guide, not just modeling the behavior we expect, but teaching them how to find the answers for themselves as well.

Children are a heritage

Psalm 127:3-5 Is a reminder that I have written on the black board by my laundry room. Our children are one of the great gifts that the Lord has to offer. Yes there will be days they challenge you. Parenting seems to stretch you in ways you never realized you needed stretching, and when the days get long and your patience gets thin, it can be easy to forget they are a gift from the Lord. So today I remind you to breathe and tell yourself that the Lord gifted these children to you. He didn’t bring them to anyone other than you. God saw to it that you would be the parent to your child. Appreciate that for a moment. He has trusted you with his workmanship (Ephesians 2:10,) his sons [and daughters] (Galatians 3:26-27.) It is that reason I have Psalm 127:3 wrote in large letters in my home, so when my patience runs thin I can remember that they are his gift to me. And your children are the Lord’s gift to you.

So today I say love your babies. Go raise them with the knowledge of the Lord. Get through the day-to-day issues of this world the best way you know how, and know you are loved. (John 3:16)

***If this post has touched you in any way please feel free to share this post. The only thing I ask is to please back to the original. And as always feel free to share via social media. If you have missed any of my prior posts in this series you can find them here : Introduction, Love Your God, Love Your Wives, and Submitting To And Respecting Our Husbands.*** 

 

Creative K Kids

{Rusty} Under the Sun: Fruit of the Spirit- Love Your Wives

Ephesians 5:25-28 “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.  In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.”

Fruite of the Spirit: Love Your Wives

I spent nearly a decade on active duty in the US Navy.  I saw more than my share of failed marriages.  Many never even knew God.  I have been married to Sara for over a decade now.  We have had our rough seas, but we have made it through, and I can’t help but think that it’s because we’ve had God guiding one or both of us.

Far too many men think that “I am married, so she does what I say, and that is that!”  Boy, are you wrong!  The vast majority of failed marriages are because one or both of the participants don’t think the other is pulling their share.  A lot of the times it’s the men that think they are entitled to a hot meal when they get home, a cold beer, and an uninterrupted game on the tube after.  Wrong again!

If you want to make a marriage work, then you need to approach it the way Jesus approached his bride, the Church.  He didn’t demand anything from her.  On the contrary, he helped her, washed her, got her ready, and then when she was clean and dressed in the purest of linens took her as his bride, in front of the whole world.  He made this promise, everlasting, so that we would know what we should model our relationships after.  All we have to do is be willing to put our mate first.

So often, you will find that a woman is willing to bend over backwards to please her husband.  Cook his favorite meals any day of the week.  Mix a drink after a tough day at work.  Let him out for a night with the fellas.  How often do men try to “hang the moon” for their wives anymore?  Today’s society is so male-centric that it’s sometimes frowned upon when a man shows an interest in taking care of his wife the way he ought to.  It is really quite simple;
If you want your spouse to do it for you, then you should be willing to do it for them!!!

I can’t say that enough.  In our house, Sara tends house and raises the girls.  I have to work outside the home.  If she wanted to swap, I would be happy to let her, and she knows it.  I also know, that if I can’t take people anymore, that she is willing to go back to work and I can stay home.  We both help out with the farm chores.  We both take care of the girls when we can, but for the ten to twelve hours a day that I am gone,  it’s her.  She’s pretty good at it, and I don’t tell her often enough.

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***Please join me next week as we look at the  exhortation for the wife, “must respect her husband.” If you have missed any of the prior discussions in this series you can find them here: Introduction, Love Your God. As always please feel free to share the posts, just remember to link back to the original. You never know who will be blessed because you shared this.***

 

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Creative K Kids
’Called

Fruit of the Spirit: Love Your God and The Bloggers Brag Pinterest Party

Before we can love our husbands, our kids, our friends, our neighbors, or even our enemies we need to know God and love God. It is from Him that we  learn what love is to look like. It is from him we learn how love is to behave. It is from him that we learn to recognize love when it shown to us. “Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” 1 John 4:8

Love Your God

It is through spending time in scripture that we get to know who God is. It is through the development of our relationship with him that we get know him. Once you commit your life to God have you continued to pursue Him? Or does your pursuit of God simply occur on a Sunday morning? Getting to know who God is, who he was, and who he will be, can not be fully achieved by hearing one man speak once a week for 15-30 minutes at a time. You need to fill your heart and your mind with His word. In the same way, we must nourish our bodies with good healthy food daily so we have energy to go complete our tasks, so must we nourish our souls daily. “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17

As we get to know God we learn that we are called first to love him with all our being. (Luke 10:27) The question so often when faced with this though is what does this look like? Well in part it is talking(praying) and listening (reading scripture) to Him. Another facet of loving God is acting on that love, and stepping up answering the call he has set forth to believers. “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.  In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5: 13-16 In other words live in such a way that you are pointing others back to God in all that you do.

At the end of the day remember this: God loves you. God is the perfect example of unconditional love. No matter how much we love Him it will never be perfect. We will stumble. We will fall. At times we may even backslide in our walks with Him. God knows this. He is not surprised by our sinful and selfish nature. That is why he sent Jesus to die on the cross. So you wouldn’t have to pay the penalty for your sin. Jesus paid that penalty. All you need to do is accept Jesus. Have you? If not I would be more than happy to discuss this more with you. Just know that you do not need to earn God’s love. He loves us right where we are. That is not to say he doesn’t call us to live a life that would be honoring to him, because he does, instead I am saying as long as you are seeking him and putting him first in all you do then you are on the right path.

Join me next week as we take a look at things from the husband’s perspective, and reflect upon the verse, “However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.” Ephesians 5: 33 And if you missed last week’s post on love please go check out Fruit of the Spirit: Love -Introduction.

***Have you ever considered your walk with God to be a relationship of give and take? In what ways do you seek to develop your relationship with him?***

***If there is anything on your heart that you would like to share that I didn’t cover, please feel free to bring it up in the comments. I would love to be able to answer questions, even if only to say that is a good question I had never considered it and I don’t know. Either way know I am here for you and would love to hear your thoughts.***

Now I would also like to introduce The Bloggers Brag Pinterest Party. I have contributed to the Pinterest Party for a couple of weeks now. It has been a great opportunity for my blog to find new readers and for me to find helpful blogs on a variety of subjects. Last week my introduction post on love (for the fruit of the spirit) gathered the most clicks of any link shared. This gave me the opportunity this week to co-host. So with no further adieu I bring to you The Bloggers Brag Pinterest Party.

 

 

Bloggers Brags logo

My post for Fruit of the Spirit:  Love was the most clicked on the last Bloggers Brags Pinterest Party, and so that means that I am the

BloggersBragsWeeklyPinterestPartyfeaturedblogger

  and the co-host for the Bloggers Brags Pinterest Party this week!    What that means for you is that you are able to link up this week here at [Sara] Under the Sun as well as at Creative K Kids and Denverista and A Life in Tune!  Link up and tell your friends!  The most clicked link will be the featured blogger next week as well as have the opportunity to be the co-host!  You can go here to see my post about Love (Fruit of the Spirit)!

Fruit of the Spirit

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LET’S GET OUR PARTY ON!

Rules of the Bloggers Brags Weekly Pinterest Party

  • Be a follower of your hosts and co-hosts.

Pinterest Party Hosts Are...

Pictures of the Bloggers Brags Pinterest Party hosts

{Misty @ Denverista (facebook) or twitter or Pinterest or google+}  

{Tammy @ Creative K Kids (facebook) or twitter or Pinterest or google+}

Follow this week’s Co-hosts:

sara & rachel

{Rachel @ A Life in Tune (facebook) or Pinterest}

{Sara@ [Sara] Under the Sun (facebook) or Pinterest}

  • Pin our Pinterest party button or a visible link onto your sidebar, post, or party page. This will help others to find our party and will bring more visibility to your links! 

Creative K Kids



  • Please make sure that you link directly to your post’s URL and not to your blog’s URL.
  • Pin the two links before yours! If EVERYONE pins, then everyone will get more Pinterest love!
  • Link up a maximum of 3 links. They can be old or new–they’re all new to us, and we want to see them!
  • OPTIONAL: Follow our Bloggers Brags Board on Pinterest. You don’t have to do this; but of course, you’ll want to! We will be pinning all of these links to that board which will also gain more exposure for you! You can find the Bloggers Brags board here.

Here are just a few more details!

  • Whoever receives the most clicks from Monday through Thursday will be featured in the next Bloggers Brags post! Not only will they be featured, but they will be offered the optional opportunity to be a co-host for the week in which they are featured. Everyone that links up will be required to follow the co-host as well as the hosts; and in return, the co-host would be required to add the linky to their blog on the day the linky goes live. So tell your friends and followers to come link up and to visit your blog through your link!
Creative K Kids



  • Disclosure: By linking up and including a picture, you agree to allow Creative K Kids and Denverista and any co-hosts to use your pictures and links in any future posts. Your photo may also be used for promotion on all social media outlets of Creative K Kids and Denverista as well as any future co-hosts.  We also may link your printables and other resources up to our permanent linkys to gain you more exposure.
  • If you include your e-mail in the linky form below you will be added to a weekly reminder e-mail when the link party goes live. Your e-mail will not to added to any other lists or given out.
  • If you’ve been featured, please grab the featured button below to add some brag to your sidebar!
  • Please do not add any shops, reviews, giveaways or link-up parties.  Links that do not comply may be removed.

‘); // ]]>

Have A Happy Thanksgiving: You are Blessed

Alright, so I know I am a day early on this, but since I post a whole three days a week I wanted to wish you a Happy Thanksgiving today. I think the older I get the more it becomes my favorite holiday. It is a day set aside to remember our blessings. No matter how bad things get there are still things to be thankful for.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving: You are Blessed

This last Sunday in church the pastor told a story about a local man who had just lost his home in a storm. It was a horrible storm that had completely scattered his four walls and his belongings. One of his neighbors had come up to him and said, “Bob.” (Let’s call him Bob because I don’t remember his name. “Bob, you have lost everything.”

Bob replied, “No I have not. I still have my wife, my family, my friends, my health, the ability to work and the drive to go earn a living. And not least of all I have the assurance of my salvation through my faith in Jesus Christ, who died on the cross.”

Now while I may not have quoted the tale exactly I know I have captured it’s essence and that is what is important today. See Bob understood that there are things in life that are far more valuable than his stuff. It is those intangible things that we possess even in the trials that we should be remembering to give thanks for.

Sometimes though life might throw you a curve ball or two or ten, and you can’t claim to have your health, job, family, etc… It is then I would suggest that Christ is there for you more than anyone else. He has stepped into the gap, washed you clean, and provided you a chance at salvation. All you need do is believe in him. Believe that he was, who he said he was. Believe that he was persecuted for you, and that he died for you. Christ died for each of us, while we were still yet sinners. He did not wait till we got things right. So when things are a mess Jesus is not revolted. He is there, ready to welcome you with open arms. If you have turned from those arms, run back to him today and wait for his warm embrace. If you have never known the love of God, and want to accept him, I am here to pray with you.

Happy Thanksgiving

“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9

“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

***What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving?***

As always please feel free to share or any post if it has touched your heart in anyway. I appreciate the support that you show me by sharing my posts with others. Thank you.

 

Three Things You Can Do To Be More Like The Proverbs 31 Woman

I like to read. You will often find that I have 2-4 books going at any one time.  Recently I have been on a kick reading about being a Proverbs 31 woman. I have been soaking up the inspiration and the advise on becoming more like this famed woman in Proverbs. The Proverbs 31 woman is called blessed by her husband and family. She is also a blessing to her family. I know this is something that I seek after and want to encourage other women to seek after.

Proverbs 31 Woman

It occurred to me while I was doing the dishes, though while I seek to become more like the Proverbs 31 woman, I am doing it all wrong. I am looking to these authors to give me the answers. I am putting this woman at a higher place in my life than Jesus. Lastly I am not asking my husband’s input.

So I am here to offer you three ways you can become more like the Proverbs 31 woman.

1. Authors do not have all the answers.

We who write might do lots of research, or have lots of experience writing about our topics. That still does not mean we have all the answers. There are many wonderful books and blogs out there. These books and blogs can encourage you to seek to make your husband and your family a priority but they do not have all the answers. Pinterest can provide you with many links to inspirational: cleaning schedules, menu plans, work from home deals, ways to teach your kids, ways to get in shape, and more. No one item on there is going to be “it.”

So just remember to see these things for what they are: inspiration, a source of encouragement, or just the kick in the butt you needed to get moving in the right direction. If you want some blogs that provide excellent encouragement in this area I recommend Club 31 WomenWomen Living Well, and Time Warp Wife. For the military wives out there I recommend my friend Reta over at Steps of Faith. If there are others that you know of or that you love please feel free to share.

2.  “Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.” (Deuteronomy 6:5)

If we are placing all our effort on becoming more like the Proverbs 31 woman, we are placing our effort on the wrong thing. Yes this is a wonderful example that the Lord has called us as women to be more like, but we are still not to place this calling first in our lives. By placing her first, we are making an idol (or god) out of her. (See Exodus 20: 23 to see what God has to say about idol worship.)

Gods can be made of anyone or anything we place more value on than the Lord and our time with the Lord.  All too often I see God-loving women get side tracked on their walk with God, by shifting focus from God to the Proverbs 31 woman. When such a shift occurs, what we are failing to remember is how she was praised because she was a woman who feared the Lord (Proverbs 31:30.)

3. If you want your husband to rise and call you blessed, ask him what he values in his home. 

Proverbs 31 Woman

My husband and I both appreciate the time I spend making yummy goodies.

Maybe  a clean home is of high importance to your husband but you are not skilled in that area. See about hiring help. The Proverbs 31 woman didn’t go it alone, Proverbs 31:15 even mentions she had servants. So see, it is alright to ask for help. Maybe you can’t afford a housekeeper, but perhaps you have a friend who is gifted in organization. Maybe she would be willing to help you set up a system that would work for you and your family.

Ultimately this is probably the biggest suggestion I can give you. Find inspiration from your spouse and then from others on what will work for your family. If you are putting your effort into areas that your spouse doesn’t value and you are completely missing what he does value then you are setting yourself up for burnout and contention.

I am not saying that if he doesn’t see the value in cleaning then it shouldn’t be done, what I am saying is perhaps then it doesn’t have to be perfect. I am also want to remind you that you don’t have to do everything alone. Ask for help. Last and certainly not least, don’t forget who you are working for in your day. “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”  (1 Corinthians 10:31)

 

TheBetterMom.com

How I am Teaching My Children to Rise Above

The bible is an excellent tool in teaching children to rise above temptation

Scrolling through my Facebook feed, this morning I noticed a friend was contemplating acting vindictively. I am actually not here to discuss that, while I don’t feel we should act in a vindictive manner, I think we all would agree we have  felt those urges. Some of us have acted upon them, and others  of us know how to rise above those feelings. What struck me really was in the comment section.

Hiding among the encouragement, for my friend, to walk away from the negativity and for her to set healthy boundaries, was the suggestion to simply give into that side of human nature. I don’t disagree it is human nature. What I disagree with is the idea that we should simply give into it if it is natural. There is a whole generation that believes if it is natural then it must be alright to do.

I would argue that emotions are just temporary, no matter how natural that it is that we have them, and our responses should not be based on the temporary. I understand the appeal; there is short-term gratification, some times it is just easier, and other times we know no other way. Instead I believe as a Christian I need to be seeking to live a life that brings me closer to my God. That life does not include room for the negativity.

I also believe that as a parent that it is my responsibility to be teaching my children how to rise above temptation, and that is one of the benefits for me in homeschooling. I can show them how I am living this out in my life everyday.

It is in the little things we build relationships.

It is in the little things we build relationships.

How I am teaching my children to rise above:

1. Drop to their knees

Prayer, prayer, and more prayer. We pray at every meal. We pray at bed time and nap time. They see me pray when I lose my temper, when I am hurting, and any time I am called to.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Philippians 4:6

2. Open the Good Book

We read bible stories together. We read from Psalms together. (I found at my children’s young age they handle the poetry better, than the long stories found in many of the other books.) We talk about what we read. They see me reading it on my own.  They know this is a book that is a part of our days, and not just decoration for our homes.

“I have not departed from the commands of his lips; I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my daily bread.” Job 23:12

3. Live transparently

In other words, I let them see me succeed and mess up. When I succeed I seek to show them how to do so humbly and graciously. When I have messed up and fallen short, which is often, I model apologizing, repenting, and simply trying again.

John 13:1-17 Is a beautiful example of Jesus modeling behavior.

4. Praise

When I see them displaying the character traits that I am hoping to instill upon them I praise them for their effort and hard work at it.

In Titus you will see where the Bible talks of encouraging one another in Godly behavior.

2013-06-26 10.59.56

Homeschooling allows my family the opportunity to do this each and everyday throughout the days. I know homeschooling is not the answer for every family, but it is for mine. I can best model this behavior when they see me consistently doing this.

Now if homeschooling is not the answer for you, great. Just don’t forget you can model the behavior you want to see when you spend time together as well. As I have read in multiple posts and heard in multiple venues recently, “More is caught, than taught.”

***What do you think? Is this something you can do? Is this something you are doing? Do you want to do this? Is there something more that you include in teaching your children to rise above?***

TheBetterMom.com

Journey to Enjoying the Wee Morning Hours

My Sunshine Wind Chimes. It would be lovely to drink coffee and sit on the porch and listen to these early in the mornings.

My Sunshine Wind Chimes. It would be lovely to drink coffee and sit on the porch and listen to these early in the mornings.

Recently, I have read a great deal about the benefits and blessing to rising early in the morning. By early I mean starting the day before my kids wake up. I have read that there would be great merit to starting my morning as little as fifteen minutes earlier. In fifteen minutes I could stretch, pray, read a devotional, start coffee, listen to the bible as I start breakfast, or I could just relish an uninterrupted shower.

The fact of the matter is the Bible has a great deal to say on this subject. In Psalm 5:3 the psalmist writes, “In the morning, Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly.”  Later on in Psalms you read, “Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days. (Psalm 90:14)” In Mark 1:35 you see even Jesus waking early to spend the time in prayer. My only conclusion from these verses is that this must be a sweet time to spend with the Lord.

I imagine, I would have a better chance at starting my days off on the right foot, if I have enjoyed some quiet moments with my maker. I could share my hopes for the day with him and lay my concerns down at his feet. I could find encouragement in his word. I could enjoy the silence of my home, coupled with the hope of a new day. I might even be able to find an extra dose of patience for the kid’s antics.

Instead, now I am dragging my tush out of bed after the big girls have woke me. Most days this leaves me feeling stuck behind the eight ball, constantly trying to catch up. You could argue well, “Sara, you have a good excuse, at the moment. You have a breastfeeding infant in the house.” While it is true I do, I don’t want to use Madelyn as an excuse. The truth is I am not particularly a morning person. This is going to be a discipline I have to develop.

The only major road block I have, aside from my distaste for early mornings, is the kids. I know I can train myself to wake up 20-30 minutes before them. In fact, I have done this several times in the past. Every time I have accomplished this in the past, though, they turn around and start waking up even earlier then they had been.

So that is where I am at in my journey to enjoying the wee morning hours and starting the day with my family off right. (I think part of that must start with going to bed sooner.)

***Are you an early bird or a night owl? If you are a night owl do you ever feel the pull to join the early birds? If you are a converted night owl, how did you overcome your desire to be up late? And finally, any suggestions on dealing with little girls who like to push their wake up time earlier and earlier?***

 

 

 

 

The Mother Your Children Need

 

I have a confession. As much as I enjoy reading, everything from books to blogs, sometimes if I over saturate myself with what everyone else is thinking and/ or doing, I feel inadequate as a mother. I get to thinking how nice it must be to be able to watch the sun rise each morning and blog with a cup of coffee in hand. Or how I should get up before dawn and pray for my little ones.

If my reading material of choice at the moment is parenting related I start to second guess my own instincts. I worry that I am not doing enough to teach them about God or his love. I worry that we don’t have enough play time or perhaps that we have too much free play time. I worry that their skills are not as far all as a friend’s child.

Chloe's family portrait.

Chloe’s family portrait.

I can weigh my days down with worry, yet that worry will not get me anywhere. Worry will not give me more hours in my day to accomplish more. You can see in Luke 12:25 where Jesus says, “Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life?” I can try all the latest tips and tricks for stream lining my day according to all the so called experts, but they may still fail and I shouldn’t feel guilty about that, nor should you.

We need to remember as we look around the world, that God did not create us all the same. We were each created with different abilities, desires, and tolerance levels. So just because ‘Mary’ can make homemade meals every night, homeschool her children, and keep a perfectly tidy house doesn’t mean you can or should have to. Maybe you work outside the home, spend 95% of your time at home playing with your kids, and have quick meals, that is alright too.

There are a multitude of ways to be a good mother. You don’t need to conform to any one else’s idea of what makes a good mother. Just remember to trust your gut instincts and to love them. It also wouldn’t hurt to look to the creator as to what he would have you do, and then you will be the mother your children need.

 

At Maybury Farms with my two oldest girls last summer.

At Maybury Farm with my two oldest girls last summer.