Monday, May 27, 2013

A Letter To My Son

Dear Jason,

I didn’t think I would make it to this day.  It has been a year since God came down from Heaven and called you home.  It has been a tough year, I think about you every single day.  I still see your smile and feel your arms around me.  Someone once said that “the love of a mother and son is a bond that can never be broken.”  Well, son it is true—not even death can break that bond.  I have dreamed of you so many times and it is in those times that I know you are still here watching over me.  I know you have gotten to know your brother or sister.  Tell him I love him even though I didn’t get a chance to hold and cuddle him. 

Everyone here is doing fine—we all still miss you and talk about often.  The kids are out of school for the summer and are enjoying the break from school.  Kim said to tell you hello and she loves her big brother.

Tell everyone there I love them and I know I will see you all one day and we will spend eternity together.

I love you son, and that will never change.

Love,

Your Mom

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Mired Up In Life

With all the rains we have had in recent weeks, water covered all the streets in my neighborhood. Our yard looked like a lake or, according to the kids, a giant swimming pool. Naturally, they wanted to go outside and play in the water and mud and were not too happy when I wouldn’t let them. So with three angry kids I went back to complete my long grocery list. Our pantry was becoming bare because of the storms that had blown through. I understood how Noah’s wife must have felt being locked in the ark with her family and all the animals to feed and care for. I just had four kids and one little dog and felt totally overwhelmed.

After giving the three little ones their instructions and making sure their older sister knew I was leaving and she was in charge, I left for my adventure. I had my coupons, list, and money and felt excited because I could have some alone time. This is a sad but true testament to my life—the only alone time is when I am running errands or grocery shopping. I’m sure you mothers out there can understand this.

Although the streets were still wet and, in some cases, a little water was still in the roads, I prayed before I left home and trusted my trip to God. Since I put everything in God’s hand, I felt confident that all would be well. The confidence I had when I started out began to fade turn into anxiety, as I began to encounter more water in the streets. I again prayed as I continued on and began to feel better.

Although the supermarket was only ten miles away I felt as though I had been driving for hours. Suddenly to my relief I was out of the water. Thankfully, I began to praise God for bringing me through the rough spots. The main road was still covered with water but I saw a side street that appeared to be clear. I could see a few “rough” spots ahead but I was full of confidence that I could make it through. “I handled the rough spots so far how much trouble could this small street be?”

Well, I soon found out. The first rough spot was not so bad. My confidence began to build as maneuvered my car around and made it though the second one. Hey, this is not so bad I thought as I attempted to drive around the third spot. But, then it happened! My front wheel dropped off the side of the road and got stuck in the mud. No matter how hard I tried to free my care, nothing worked. All I could do was sit in my car and cry and pray.

Eventually, a man came along in a 4-wheel drive truck and offered to help me. After several attempts and a good mud bath for me my car was free from the muddy grave. I was so happy, I began to jump up and down. I’m sure the poor Samaritan thought I had lost my mind. Before I could ask him how much I owed him, he jumped in his truck and took off.

Fortunately, neither my car nor I was permanently damaged (except my ego, of course) and I was pretty sure that would heal in time. I decided I could not go into the grocery store looking like I did so I carefully turned around and headed back home. When I got home looking like the “thing from the black lagoon,” the kids thought it was hilarious that I was covered in mud from head to foot. After if calmed their hysteria down by threatening to ground them for life, I went inside to clean myself up a bit. I am sure that after a good hot bath for me and a good hot run through the carwash I will feel more like grocery shopping tomorrow. Since I did not buy groceries, I found some popcorn and that is what I fixed for supper. The kids did not mind that at all.

While I was bathing the yucky sticky mud off my worn and tired body, I began to realize that I had asked God to keep me safe. However, when I thought I was in the clear, I took the problem back again to fix my way. I had taken control back from God and tried to do it my way. God did not force His protection on me—He let me go on my own strength. He was there by me the whole time waiting for me to ask Him for help. Yes, God was there but I ignored Him when I thought I could handle the situation.

God will take us through the rough spots in life if we put our complete trust in Him. It’s only when we try to navigate these roads ourselves that we find we are stuck in the mud of life.

Today’s Whisper:

Journal about a tine when you took control back from God and what happened. Did you find life went smoother when you gave him control again?

Today’s Prayer

Father, when the storms of life pound at our door and the water covers our roads of life, help me to remember to leave everything in your capable hands. I cannot navigate the rough roads on my own. It is only with your power that I can make it through. Thank you for never leaving me and always being there to help.

Amen

Friday, May 24, 2013

Vacation

Vacation

Another year has reached its end

And school is out once more.

No children’s voices in the hall

No footsteps on the floor.

No more bells to start a class

Or call the wanderers in.

No more harried teacher’s voice

To be heard above the din.

But we’re all ready for a rest,

As we call “good-bye” to all.

One last sound echoes through the door—

“I’ll see you in the fall.”

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Prayer for Tornado Victims

Heavenly Father, wrap your loving arms around the grieving families in Oklahoma. I know whatever happens happens for a reason. I know you loved these children and they are now in you loving arms. Please protect their families from further grief brought by hate groups that falsely call themselves yours. You are a loving and merciful God but also a just God. I ask your protection on all that are hurting today and let your presence be known. Send your angels to stand guard against the enemies of you and yours

New Wings by Donna Stanley

“When we pray for the supernatural, why are we surprised when it actually shows up?”

Olivia Stanton always knew the spiritual realm exists.  She goes to church and has read about guardian angels.  However, when she prays for God to show her her guardian angel.  She does not recognize him when he does make his presence known.  However, as things begin to happen to her friends she becomes a powerful prayer warrior.  I was surprised to see this book handled many sensitive issues teens experience with grace and integrity.  Among a few of these issues are cutting, date rape, car accidents, and teenage pregnancy.  Ms. Stanley covered this issues with tact and with enough knowledge and tact. 

As things continue to occur, Olivia becomes a very powerful prayer warrior for God and calls upon  God to send His angels for protection.  Although this book deals with both sides of spiritual warfare—angels and demons—it does so with credibility and without sensationalism.  This is a YA novel but it changed my prayer life and has led me to think about my own guardian angel.  If anyone likes novels about spiritual warfare, this is the book for them.

I am giving this book a 5 star rating because it is well-written and a refreshing change from the Vampire novels that are written for young people today.  I am passing this book on the family and friends and hope it changes their lives as it did mine.  The only downside of this book for me is once I started reading it, I could not put it down and read farther into the night than I intended.  In other words, I got up the next morning still sleepy.

I received this book from Glass Roads without monetary remuneration for a honest review.  I was not required to publish a positive review, only one that reflected my opinion.  The opinion in this review is solely mine and under no influence by anyone connected with the author or publisher.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Too Busy

Too busy to read the Bible

Too busy to wait and pray!

Too busy to speak out kindly

To someone by the way!

Too busy to care and struggle,

To think of the life to come!

Too busy building mansions,

To plan for the Heavenly Home.

Too busy to help a brother

Who faces the winter blast!

Too busy to share his burden

When self in the balance is cast.

Too busy for all that is holy

On earth beneath the sky.

Too busy to serve the master

But not too busy to die.

Unknown

How many days have we rushed from one task to another?  Knowing we need to spend time to spend time with our Heavenly Father and read His word, we run around with our never-ending to-do lists.  Instead of pausing long enough to offer a word of encouragement to a fellow traveler, we rush by with a frown lost in our own problems.  When something slows us down and stands in our way we fuss and throw a “poor me” pity party.

We are all busy rushing around and chasing the dream of more money, bigger house, better car without giving a thought about where we will spend eternity.  We don’t have tine to help another person because we are so busy trying to do all we need to do to make ourselves happy.  This is called the “hurry-worry” syndrome and it affects all of us to some extent.  Yes, we might spend all our lives doing more, getting more, and working more but there will come an event  in our lives we have to make time for—the time to die.  We can rush around and obtain all the fame, wealth, and power this world has to offer  and die wealthy but empty.  We can slow down and enjoy our lives and families more and die full of peace.  This choice is one each of us must make.  Which do you choose?

Contentment comes not from having more, but from desiring less.

Unknown

Do not store up for yourselves treasure on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal.  But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy and where thieves do not break in and steal.  For where your treasure is there your heart will be also.

Matthew 6:19-21 (NIV)

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Friendship

Friendship is a special gift

That must come from the heart.

It must offered with sincerity

Right from the very start.

A friendly smile, a soothing tough

And a few comforting words,

It only takes a little time

But oh—what great rewards!

So remember—to have a friend

A friend you must first be.

So invest a little time for a

Gift that will last an eternity.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

A Mother’s Love

A Mother’s Love

A mother’s love is a gift from God

A wondrous blessing to behold.

A mother’s love is a precious thing

Worth far more that diamonds and gold.

God gave her eyes that sparkle like jewels

And a voice soft as a lullaby.

He gave her the gentle touch of an angel

To wipe the tears from our eyes.

He endowed her with the wisdom of Solomon

To help us along life’s rocky way.

He gave her the strength of Samson

To endure each and every day.

So thank God each day for your mother’s love

A love so wonderful and pure.

This special blessing is yours forever

Of this you can be sure.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

The Theories and The Challenges

Before becoming a mother I had a hundred theories on how to bring up children .Now I have seven children and only one theory:love them,especially when they least deserve to be loved.-Kate Samperi

We all have theories—good ones—BC (before children).  I have heard “No child of mine will do that.”  “Why can’t she do something with that child?”  In fact, I have been known to mutter these perfectly good theories myself.  Oh come on, I know you have too.  It’s easy to know what needs to be done, if we aren’t in the game.  It’s like being an armchair quarterback.  Everything is cut and dry, black and white.  But, and this is a BIG BUT, what happens to our theories when  we are in the trenches ourselves? 

In the BC stage life can run smoothly but admit it—sometimes it is boring.  In the AC phase (after children) our lives will never be the same.  I don’t mean just the tons of dirty diapers and the late night feedings—these will stop after awhile.  I mean the “why” questions and the embarrassing things our adorable little darlings do and say in public.  Mine have pulled their share of this sudden desire to let everyone in a mile radius know what they are thinking.  Sometimes we just want to jerk them up and let them have it.  But, there are always those people around that are still in the BC stage and would totally misunderstand our methods of reining in the wild ones.   I remember when my daughter was about 8 years old and we were sitting in a restaurant when out of nowhere she announced to the other patrons:  “Hear ye, hear ye, Momma farted.”  I had not but felt like crawling under the table.  That was our first and last time in that restaurant.  In fact, it was quite a few months before we went out to eat again.  This was funny but it would have disastrous to laugh because she appeared to be ready to say or do something else. 

So we can have all kinds of theories about parenting when we are BC but we throw those theories out of the window when the blessings do come into our lives.  I said throw the theories out of the window—not the children—though sometimes it is tempting.  I have been a parent for many years and have clung to only one theory in child rearing.  I love my kids and let them know that every day.  I love them because they deserve to be loved and especially when they least deserve it.  After all, children a wonderful gift from God and are ours for such a short time.

If you are in the BC stage remember all the theories in the world may sound good but in the AC stage only one holds true—love them unconditionally and always.

Father:

I thank you for my children and grandchildren.  Help me show them love even when they are most unlovable because I know you love me even when I am not easy to love.

I pray this in Jesus’ name.

Amen

Ready for Bed

I did not write this but I wish I had. We mothers are the ones who take care of everyone else. I know that I can’t go to bed until homework is done, clothes ready for the next day, and at least five visits to my room from each of the kids. But we do what we can for those we love. I try to enjoy this time in the kids’ lives because all to soon they will be grown. Of course, if my past is any indication, they will bring their kids home to me just like their mom did. I am not sorry, I do love these kids but one of these days I am going to let my husband have the joy of the nightly routine. Yeah, like that’s gonna happen. But I am rambling. Mothers know our jobs are the most important one in the world and we are paid with love. That is better than any amount of money. I would not change places with anyone at all. Mothers form the foundation of the world and if we do our jobs to the best of our abilities, we will have nothing to regret. So to all the mothers out there HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY and let’s keep up the good work.

 

Mom and Dad were watching TV when Mom said, I'm tired, and it's getting
late. I think I'll go to bed."
She went to the kitchen to make sandwiches for the next day's lunches,
rinsed out the popcorn bowls, took meat out of the freezer for supper the
following evening, checked the cereal box levels, filled the sugar
container, put spoons and bowls on the table and started the coffee pot for
brewing the next morning.
She then put some wet clothes into the dryer, put a load of clothes into the
wash, ironed a shirt and secured a loose button. She picked up the
newspapers strewn on the floor, picked up the game pieces left on the table
and put the telephone book back into the drawer. She watered the plants,
emptied a wastebasket and hung up a towel to dry. She yawned and stretched
and headed for the bedroom. She stopped by the desk and wrote a note to the
teacher, counted out some cash for the field trip, and pulled a textbook out
from hiding under the chair. She signed a birthday card for a friend,
addressed and stamped the envelope and wrote a quick note for the grocery
store. She put both near her purse. Mom then creamed her face, put on
moisturizer, brushed and flossed her teeth and trimmed her nails.
Hubby called, "I thought you were going to bed."
"I'm on my way," she said.
She put some water into the dog's dish and put the cat outside, then made
sure the doors were locked. She looked in on each of the kids and turned out
a bedside lamp, hung up a shirt, threw some dirty socks in the hamper, and
had a brief conversation with the one up still doing homework. In her own
room, she set the alarm, laid out clothing for the next day, straightened up
the shoe rack. She added three things to her list of things to do for
tomorrow. About that time, the hubby turned off the TV and announced to no
one in particular "I'm going to bed," and he did.

Author Unknow

The Biggest Lesson

The best lesson we have to give our children is truth.

-Goldie Hawn

Today with all the trials and lies in the world, we have a hard lesson to pass on to our children.  This lesson is teaching them honesty and integrity.  They are exposed to so much dishonesty in their own world, sometimes this dishonesty seems to be the normal way of life.  It is always easier to pass the blame to someone else than take responsibility for our own actions.  “Who’s to know if I cheat on this test?” “ What does it hurt to take that piece of candy from the store without paying for it?  After all, it’s only one piece, right?” 

If we don’t teach our children the value of telling the truth in all they do, we do a great disservice to them.  Our kids are in school for the majority of the day and busy scurrying to after school activities with friends, but the bottom line is if we don’t teach them how important honesty is, no one else will teach them.  It’s never too early to start the lessons.  Our toddlers can be taught this important lesson by catching “teachable moments” in each day.  We don’t have to make these lessons difficult or overwhelming.  The easiest way to teach honesty to our children is simple—live an honest life and always tell the truth.  Children will always follow our example before they listen to our words.

Father,

I come before you to ask you help in letting me live a life of honesty and truth for my children.  I want to be a good examine for them to follow.  Don’t let my words come back void but let my children see you in me.  I ask these things in Jesus’ name.

Amen

Friday, May 10, 2013

A Strong Woman

A woman is like a teabag. Only when in hot water do you realize how strong she is

Nancy Reagan

I love this quote from former first lady, Nancy Reagan.  It brings to mind many times when I found out just how strong I am when it comes to my children.  I have defended my children in the face of unfair treatment from teachers.  I have also defended teachers when I thought they were right.  I might be easy going and can relate to a lot of people but when my kids are involved, I can become a mother bear defending her cubs. I have gone to school to take my children to school when I found they had skipped school.  I have stood toe-to-toes with teachers who had falsely accused my child.   I have gone out in the middle of the night to find my prodigal and brought them home amid shouts of protest from them.  Why would I do such things?  Because I love my children and will fight to the death for them.  Is there a mother out there who will not say the same thing?  When our children are involved, we will fight to the death for them.

Now that my children are grown, they look back on those times with fond memories.  They knew they had a mother who loved them more than anything in this world.

 

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Best Advice

The best advice from my mother was a reminder to tell my children every day: 'Remember you are loved.'

Evelyn McCormick

 

We know the responsibilities we have as mothers.   We make sure our family has good nutritious food, clean and fairly stylish clothes for school, and homework help when needed. 
As our children grow, these responsibilities do change but our children still need and want advice from us.  Sure they go through a “stage” when they think it is not “cool” to listen to dear old Mom’s advice, but they will still come to us in the dark of night.  They do this so their friends won’t know that they still seek advice from Mom. 

I do not profess to know how to give the best advice but I do know the best thing we can do, is to let them know they are loved.  If a child knows he is loved, he will be willing to listen sometimes even  when he thinks he knows best.  We need to remind our children every day that we love them and then do it—love then unconditionally.  Love them when are loveable and when they are not so loveable.  This means when they are considerate of other people’s feelings and when they refuse to share their toys with a friend.  Sometimes, these same friends will hurt our children’s feelings and this is when we should be available to listen –sometimes listening without trying to “fix” the problem will be all it takes.  Whatever happens in our children’s lives, letting them know they are deeply loved will make the harshest situation more bearable and our children better prepared for life.

Father,

I come before you tonight with a desire that my children know they are loved.  I want to love them in the way that you love me—unconditionally.  I know I am often not so loveable but you still do love me because I am your child.  Give me patience and understanding with my children so they can see your love in me.

I ask these things in Jesus name.

Amen.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Bittersweet

Mother’s Day is always a bittersweet day for me.  I bear a burden in my heart for women who want to have children but can’t.  I know there are many women who fit in this category and I want to say I love each and every one of you.  I did have two children one of which I lost last May when he was 35 years old.  Before my two children were born, I had two miscarriages.  I remember watching other young mothers holding their babies and playing with their children and, I admit, I would throw a pity party for myself.  I was angry, hurt, and bitter because my children weren’t with me. 

I got so tired of the well meaning friends and family that would tell me, “It is God’s will.”  What, God’s will—what does that mean?  I am not good enough to have children?  God doesn’t trust me with children?  Sometimes I would hear, “It’s for the best.”  Whose best?  Not my best, I want to have a child!

So to every woman that wants to have children, remember,  God is watching over you and He knows your heart.  I will not throw clich├ęs or platitudes out at you.  I am praying for you that you find the peace you seek and deserve.   I know it is hard but prayers are going up to Heaven for you.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Moms Are Teachers

What you teach your own children is what you really believe in.

-Cathy Warner Weatherford

Motherhood is full of hard work and responsibility but it is also the most rewarding job a woman can have.  We can do so much for our children by loving them  and teaching them skills and values.  If we teach our children to love God, we will equip them to handle whatever life throws at them.  If we don’t teach them to love God, the world will teach them not to.  Being a mother means being your child’s first teacher and the first few years of life are the most formative years.  We should be careful to pattern our lives in ways that they can see our love of God.  Children are always watching what you do even if they don’t listen to what is said.  I’m not saying motherhood is easy.  It’s not.  We fail at times, we yell at our children, and we expect too much of them at times.  What I am saying is motherhood is important enough to let our children know when we fail and it is okay to say, “I’m sorry.”  No one is perfect not mothers and not children.  But we can teach our children more when they see us fail and get back up.  Let them know failure is not falling but in the staying down.

Our children will remember what we taught them years after we are gone.  Let’s make sure we teach them good values and about God’s love.  Let them see us read our Bible and pray. Let’s talk about God’s grace and love to them.  Children imitate what we do so let’s make sure what we do is what we want them to learn.   Let the lessons be a natural flow of our lives—children know when we are not sincere in what we say and teach.  In other words, in order to lead our children to God, we must first live the life we want them to live.

Monday, May 6, 2013

A Praying Mother

I remember my mother’s prayers and they have always followed me.  They have clung to me all my life.

Abraham Lincoln

The young teen was out partying with her friends.  She had had too much too drink and was alone in a car with the school’s “bad boy”.   They started kissing and he began fumbling with her jeans in an attempt to take them off.  She  weakly tried to fight him off but was so intoxicated she couldn’t.  Just as he got her jeans down and started to rape, a bright light filled the car.  He expected to see a cop standing there but when he looked up he saw a huge man dressed in white.  The man had a sword at his side and glowed with a blinding white light.  The boy became frightened and drove the girl home.  When he arrived at the girl’s house he hurriedly pulled her out of his car and drove away.  Her mother heard the car and went to the door.  She saw her daughter lying on the lawn and ran to her.  She then helped her daughter to bed and tucked her in.

The next morning the mother called the girl downstairs for a talk regarding the previous night.  The girl began to cry and tell her about what had happened.  Suddenly she stopped.  “Mom, I remember seeing a bright light and a huge man dressed in white in front of the car.”  The mom sat there with tears in her eyes.  “Darling,” she said.  “I was praying for you.”

As mothers we do a lot for our children.  We make sure they eat to nourish their bodies and we make sure they have clothes to wear.  We send them to school or homeschool them to make sure they receive a good education.  But are we neglecting to give them the most important  protection we can?  Are we praying for them as they go out into the world each day.  This is the most important thing we can do for them—bathe them in prayer daily.  Ask for God’s protection over our most precious resource.  Prayer should be the first thing we do each morning and the last thing we do each night.  It’s not too late to start praying for our children.  A few minutes spent in prayer can make a difference in a child’s life.  The most powerful prayers that reach God’s ears are from mothers pleading on behalf of their children.  A mother’s prayer is powerful because when a mother prays—God listens.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Power Divine

AMAZING GRACE has set me free.,

JUST AS I AM He came to me.

WASHED IN THE BLOOD my soul was cleansed.

Now I’m STANDING ON THE PROMISES of Calvary.

THE OLD RUGGED CROSS paid for my sins.

BECAUSE HE LIVES I’ve been set free.

He has shown such LOVE DIVINE.

By THE SWEET SWEET SPIRIT HE LIVES in me.

I have been given VICTORY IN JESUS

And must SEND THE LIGHT to the lost.

So ONWARD CHRISTIAN SOLDIERS

JESUS SAVES because He paid the cost.

ALL HAIL THE POWER OF JESUS NAME

Should be our battle cry.

When our life on earth is through

We’ll live with Him IN THE SWEET BY AND BY.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Ask Not Why

When troubles come your way

And brings your spirits down low,

When a cloud of despair holds you tight

And refuses to let go.

When you have a mountain

That seems too high to climb,

Just lift your eyes to Jesus

He will be there every time.

When you are discouraged

And pain tears your heart in two,

Do not ask “Why?” of God,

Rather ask “What can I do for you?”

You’ll find He is always ready

To help you through your pain,

You’ll find that through your problems

You can glorify His name.

For Jesus is the answer

To the problems that come your way,

But to understand His message

You must listen when you pray.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Touched By The Master’s Hand

 

The poor beggar sat by the rich man’s gate

Begging for crumbs that he might eat,

But the rich man showed no mercy

And had him thrown out into the street.

The blind man stared with unseeing eyes

As the people passed him by.

He knew that God had a purpose for him

So he did not question why.

But now the beggar can sit down to feast

And the blind man-- he can see.

For they have been touched by the master’s hand

And from pain they have been set free.

Once I, like the beggar hungered

And like the blind man, I could not see.

But the master reached down His loving hand

And saved a poor sinner like me

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Full of Song

From Charles Spurgeon's "Faith's Checkbook" Full of Song May 1 The mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. (Isaiah 55:12) When sin is pardoned, our greatest sorrow is ended, and our truest pleasure begins. Such is the joy which the Lord bestows upon His reconciled ones, that it overflows and fills all nature with delight. The material world has latent music in it, and a renewed heart knows how to bring it out and make it vocal. Creation is the organ, and a gracious man finds out its keys, lays his hand thereon, and wakes the whole system of the universe to the harmony of praise. Mountains and hills, and other great objects, are, as it were, the bass of the chorus; while the trees of the wood, and all things that have life, take up the air of the melodious song. When God's Word is made to prosper among us and souls are saved, then everything seems full of song. When we hear the confessions of young believers and the testimonies of well-instructed saints, we are made so happy that we must praise the Lord, and then it seems as if rocks and hills and woods and fields echo our joy-notes and turn the world into an orchestra. Lord, on this happy May Day, lead me out into thy tuneful world as rich in praise as a lark in full song. From the Faith's Checkbook Mobile Devotional Android app - http://www.LookingUpwardApps.com/fcb