Lead By Example

August 26, 2011

By 7pm I feel so exhausted most nights I can’t wait to get the kids to bed so I can go to sleep! Some nights I actually hear myself saying, “You guys need to go to bed so I can!”  Did I really say that?
After the battle of getting jammies on, brushing teeth and one last trip to the bathroom for the boys to at least try to go, I get them tucked into their beds. Of course, they both have ‘one more thing’ to tell me. I listen patiently trying with all my exhausted effort to not get annoyed because all I’m thinking is getting me to bed.
Then I hear it. “You didn’t pray.” I think, “Tomorrow, it can wait till tomorrow. I am so tired.” Then I hear Him again, “You didn’t pray” and I have been convicted. We didn’t pray.
Oh how many times do I call out to God asking for His help, guidance and wisdom in raising my boys to be godly men! He is faithful and He is helping me right here and now by gently reminding me we didn’t pray. Not only didn’t we pray, but I didn’t read them a Bible story either. Here I am skipping the most important thing, talking to God because I am too tired! And even worse, I try to reason and put it off until tomorrow.
I am convicted.
What kind of an example am I setting? Not a good one that is for sure! I always tell my boys, “God likes it when we talk to Him and when we thank Him for giving us all we have.” But through my actions, the message I am giving instead is, ‘We only pray to God when we feel like it and only when it’s convenient for us.’
Shame on me.
So, I announce with renewed strength, “We didn’t pray! We are going to pray!” Lately, my boys don’t want to say their own prayers (hmm, I wonder why?) so I have been praying a family prayer. I ask them, “Is there anything specific you want to pray?” Sometimes, I get a response to pray for a toy or healing a boo-boo and sometimes I get just a few grunts.

But, on this one night, as I began to pray my three year old said, “I want to pray!” Oh, I was so excited to hear those words! I tell him to go ahead. He prays, but we can’t hear him because he is speaking so quietly and covers his head with his blankets. Then my six year old says, “I want to pray too!” Yippee! I tell him he can pray when his brother is finished. Unsure if the three year old is done because we can’t hear him, my now half a sleep six year asks, “Are you done?” And we get a nod, so I tell the older one you can pray now.

And this was his prayer, “Jesus, please forgive me for kicking my brother in the head today and keep our hearts pure…” To be honest, that’s all I heard. My heart filled with joy and I couldn’t believe my ears. He prayed for forgiveness, which I don't think he has ever done before and with no prompting from me!

Now I think how many times do I ask God for help and then ignore Him when He is so faithfully here to do so always. How many times do I let my own selfish needs inhibit my children‘s spiritual growth?

Thank God, I Think He Gets It!

August 25, 2011

I took the boys to the fair in town. It was a night spent with good friends, rides, and yummy fair food. It was a late night too.
When we got home, my main goal was to get the boys into bed. Just when I was going to announce, “Okay guys, it’s time for bed!” my oldest brings me our Jesus storybook bible. I was thinking wow -he wants me to read this! It is normally part of our nightly routine. Once the kids are all tucked into bed I read one story from this book, but many nights I get some grumbling because it’s not a book about cars, trucks, or tractors. So, I have to admit, I was a little surprised!

This particular night’s reading was titled, “The Good Shepherd”.  Part of it was actually a paraphrase from Psalm 23 “The Lord is my shepherd…” and the story tells how God gave David this song to remind his people He will always love them and look after them like a shepherd does his sheep. My son stopped me and said, “Mom, it’s just like us. You are the shepherd leading your sheep!”
Let me tell you my excitement was overflowing. I hugged him and told him he was so right and it was wonderful he made that connection!

I know this was genuine because even though I blog about my ministry leading my boys hearts to Christ I never discussed it with my kids.

Thank you Lord for hearing my prayers! What an awesome reassurance from You that with Your leading I am planting the seeds You will water and together we will cultivate the hearts of my children to follow You!


Psalm 23

The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness
for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil,
for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

Have a blessed day!

Five Minute Friday: New

August 19, 2011



GO
New life, gifts from God
New outlook on life
New dreams, aspirations
New joy
New strength, wisdom and encouragement
New miracles, signs and wonders
New jobs, new homes
New opportunities
New hope
The beginning of a new day
I have been made new
All through Jesus Christ! Amen!
STOP

Have a blessed day!

We Need to Pray!

August 17, 2011

“You are having a boy! That’s great, boys are easier than girls.”

“You are having another boy?! They will always have each other.”
These are only some of the comments I received when I was pregnant.  Now these baby boys are quickly growing into bigger boys!

Being a single mom from the very start, I knew I couldn’t do this alone. I also knew how I wanted to raise my babies. Being a mom is more than changing diapers, wiping noses, feeding the kids and kissing boo-boo’s. Being a mom is more than caring for the physical needs of our children.

Being a mom is what God has called us to be. It is caring for the hearts and souls of our children by teaching them about who created them, planting seeds and leading them, by example, to Christ.  

God does know what we need and He does provide us with the ability to do what He has called us to do. For this reason, I believe discovering Brooke Mcglothlin’s book Warrior Prayers was not a mistake. This book has been a blessing to me and so many other moms!

On September 6th the 21 Days of Prayer for Sons challenge begins again based on this book. I am SO excited to participate in this challenge again! So, if you are a mom of a boy or many, newborn or grown and out of the home, won’t you please join me and thousands of other moms purposefully praying for our sons!

Please visit the Warrior Prayers for all the details and to purchase the ebook.

Have a blessed day!

Tug-O-War

August 15, 2011


I am only one.
And many days I feel torn…in…two.

I am constantly being pulled in opposite directions…to the left, to the right, back and forth, this way….no that way! Aah! Sadly, it leaves me to the point where I sometimes wish I could just leave my own body and walk away.

My boys are almost three years apart and generally speaking they like similar things, which should make life a little easier. Well, one would think. But, often times they don’t want to do the same thing. One wants to go to the park with the huge sandbox and trucks while the other wants to go where there are bike paths. When one is all for going to the store, the other gives me a hard time. One wants me to play monster trucks with him while the other one wants me to sit and snuggle. We have compromised; we have taken turns, and even have given in (usually the older one to his younger brother).

My heart is tugged one way then the other.  It is a continual, non-stop tug-o-war. No matter how we come to a resolution, someone is unhappy (at least for a little while). Then my heart is tugged and pulled this way, then that way because as a mom, I want both my boys to be happy. Oh and how I do know I cannot make them both happy all the time, at the same time!

One thing I can do is turn these moments into learning moments for them and teachable moments for me that will help my boys with relationships at school, church and later in life with colleagues and spouses.  Don’t get me wrong, these moments more than not, leave me like a withered flower, a lifeless lump on the ground. I need to be reminded through God’s strength and His gentle nudging that it is not about me and how worn I feel. It is about raising successful men by teaching them how to be. It is about extending grace to one another, as He gives grace, even when we desperately want our own way.

Have a blessed day!

Today's Love Note

August 14, 2011









Have a blessed day!

Five Minute Friday: Beauty

August 12, 2011

The Gypsy Mama has been talking this week about how to weed out the lie that you are not beautiful and the surprising place that ugly sometimes comes from. Today's five minute Friday prompt is on beauty.

GO

I have been telling myself I need to start exercising again. The main reason is I know it’s good for me and I will be healthier. Who am I kidding? What I really am thinking is, “It will also make me feel more beautiful”.  But I have yet to begin an exercising program. Instead, I focus not on my outside beauty, but what do I look like on the inside? I try to let God mold me and transform me into the beautiful person He created me to be.

I look around me and focus on all the beautiful blessings God has given me and His hand at work that surrounds me. My children, His Son! Blue skies, green grass, flowers, summer rain, thunderstorms…
When I put my focus on these things my view of beauty is not based on the world’s standard, but on God’s!

STOP

Have a blessed day!

Be Shepherds

August 10, 2011

“Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them—not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve; not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away.”
1 Peter 5:2-4 NIV

These verses are actually speaking of the elders of the church and as I was reading my Bible one night they really touched my heart.

I may not be considered an elder in the church, but I am an elder in my own home. As a mom, God has called me to raise these precious gifts he has entrusted to me to know and follow His voice. Therefore, I am the shepherd leading (as least two) of God’s flock, who are under my care. 

His words remind me to be an example by modeling Christ. My attitude should be the same of Christ, caring for my children with a servant’s heart, providing selfless care and sacrificial love always.

I am thrilled as I grasp the concept that motherhood is my ministry. As a single mom of two young boys I believe God has purposefully placed in my path wonderful people, books and other resources to encourage me for this journey. Through His Word I am filled with wisdom and life to lead. I trust in Him, who is leading me first down the right path and with my children right behind me. I visualize this so clearly in my mind it brings me peace because when our days are chaotic and overwhelming I know we are not alone, never alone.

Have a blessed day!

I Need Him

August 07, 2011

It’s quiet except for the crickets and the hum of the air conditioner. My body feels heavy. I don’t think I can move. I was only going to lie here until my boys fell asleep.

It’s quiet. I don’t think I want to move.

A dull ache in my temples, tension in my jaw. I must have been clenching my teeth. There is pain in my neck. Am I stressed? Yes, perhaps I have been.

All of a sudden I realize it’s not one particular thing. It is all of it and how did this happen? Schedules, routine, structure all went out the window. It’s summer, so it’s okay to let the kids stay up late…just this once. Well, once turned into many, then allowing them to drift off to sleep in my bed. I, of course, get pushed out.
I stay up way too late, an attempt to squeeze in some ‘me’ time. Although I am too tired to read, I make my way to the computer. I want to learn digital scrapbooking. So I scour the internet and quickly become overwhelmed with all the possibilities.

Tomorrow comes too quickly, yet it is a new day. I tell myself I will get us back on track today. My determination is overcome with exhaustion. I work a full day and I’m cranky. I clench my jaw. The headache is there – always there. I’m in a trance, no energy and the attempt to overdose on coffee doesn’t help.
I have zero patience with my kids. It’s now dinnertime. What is for dinner anyway? I didn’t plan. I didn’t think and now I can’t think and now I don’t even want to try to think. Ah, order a pizza! I skip giving baths, the house is a mess.

Tomorrow.
Yes, I will clean tomorrow. I drag my feet, the kids get to bed too late….again.

And as I try to fall asleep, the "I'm a bad mom" guilt starts to creep in. Yes, tomorrow. I will make it up to them tomorrow.

This is a true story. This was me only the past few weeks. Have you ever been caught in the vicious circle? My prayer life and quiet time with God also suffered, which only made me even crankier.
Thankfully, God scooped me up! I could go on and on right now about how the Lord is my strength, His grace is sufficient, keep your eyes on God, do not be anxious or fear and trust Him in all areas of your life, but I need to save that for another time.

Today I planned our meal, the kids got baths, a bedtime story, said our prayers and now they are fast asleep in their own beds, where I am headed myself!

Sweet dreams!

Who says change isn't good?

August 01, 2011

I couldn't resist. I modified my blog again. Small changes, but nevertheless enough to give me a boost!

One reason why I like to use photos in my header is so I can easily change it up a bit!

If you are wondering <or maybe you are not!> I do re-arrange the furniture in rooms that I can often. It energizes me and lifts me up. Especially those long winter months!

As I was changing my blog appearance I was also thinking I need to change some things about me too. It is a slow process to change ourselves.

Now that I'm satisfied with the look of my blog <for now> It's time to get to work on those 'self' changes!

Have a blessed day!
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