“Direct your children onto the right path, and when they are older, they will not leave it.” Proverbs 22:6

I’m so thankful that Ellie is surrounded by friends who are being raised by parents who love the Lord. This picture brings so much joy to my heart. In this moment I am reminded that as Christians with children, we are responsible to point them in the right directions. This means We put Ellie in Godly social environments so that she can see the difference between a friend who loves the Lord and a friend who does not. We never want Ellie to believe that only “old people”can love the Lord but we want her to know that young people do too. In knowing and seeing this I believe she will build her strongest relationships with individuals who are close with God. We pray that in doing this one day she will fall in love with the right boy who always points her to Jesus like her daddy does for me. We often strive to place our child in the best environment for success. When it comes to our child’s education we place them in the best schools that will help them get the best career. We make sure our kids are on the best teams to help them become the best athletes. However, We often fail to push them toward creating relationships with individuals who know how to stay close to God when everything else falls apart. All relationships are important but as Christians we should want our children to play a significant role in this world and this means they are closest to people who point them to Christ.

A pineapple a day!

1 Peter 5:7 “Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.”

I tend to worry more than what is probably normal. I’m often discouraged by this human nature of mine and each day I try so hard not to let the worries take root. Our human nature is not an excuse to stay broken. The truth is I fail… on many occasions. I am continually learning to turn each worry into a prayer.

Did you know that Jesus is not the least bit shocked by our worries?

I’ve realized that every time I pray about a specific worry I feel God give me permission to let that worry go. We often just need assurance that it’s ok to not worry. When we put all our faith in God and in Him alone we are giving ourselves permission not to worry. Jesus even tells us not to worry.

Matthew 6:25-27

That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are? Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?

When I was in elementary school my family was having a lot of financial trouble. We often worried if there would be enough food to make it through the month. I can remember being so consumed with worry that my family would not have food to eat that I would wake up in the night to check the pantry. I would pull out the little food we had and divide it up into sections on the counter. When there was not enough to make it through the month I would lay awake trying to stretch the food for the month in my head. Eventually my family hit a better spot in life and we had more then enough but you see that time I spent so consumed with “would we have enough” drove me into this feeling of discomfort around food. Suddenly I just didn’t want to eat. This worry drove me to an eating disorder. The worry won’t stop just because the problem has been fixed. The food issue was fixed but the deep rooted worry was not. Sometimes you can spend so much time worried about something that even when the problem is fixed the worry only grows into something bigger. We can’t allow worry to become a habit in our life.

I have excepted that by allowing myself to constantly worry I am only adding more fuel to the fire. I am missing out on all of God’s greatness when I allow worry to overcome me. You are too!

God loves you so much and He does not want you spending your life worried about tomorrow.

When I saw the expression

“A pineapple a day keeps the worries away,” my mind immediately went to God.

Praying daily keeps the worries away and when they comes back continue to pray.

I’m not perfect. I still wake up at 3am with a deep feeling of anxiety but I immediately give it to God reminding myself that I am safe. I now know that I can give my worries to God and He truly makes all the difference. I encourage you to begin turning all your worries into prayers. You have permission to let go and let let God take care of it all. Trust Him.

Oh Be Careful Little Eyes!

“In the same way, encourage the young men to live wisely. And you yourself must be an example to them by doing good works of every kind. Let everything you do reflect the integrity and seriousness of your teaching.” Titus 2:6-7

Yesterday in the church nursery these four were calming their babies by showing them the fish in the tank. This is something they see the volunteers do when a child comes in upset after being separated from their parent. It always works!

Kids listen and they watch us. They repeat what we say and they mimic what we do. Let’s be sure we are helping them say and mimic the heart of God.

The Mom Life!

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Phil 4:13

Moms! Let’s get real Motherhood is hard! Last week I did 15 loads of laundry in a weekend. I’m not sure if I should be ashamed that we have enough clothes to build up 15 loads or worse that I let it sit there that long! After I finished the laundry it laid on Ellie’s bed for a week unfolded. Our house always looks like a bomb went off even when I’m cleaning ALL 👏THE 👏 TIME! We eat out way too much because I can’t cook and I’m too tired at the end of the day to learn. Recently I let Ellie drink two tall glasses of purple kool-aid because quite frankly her smile while drinking it made me too happy to stop her. My punishment: she peed… EVERYWHERE! If I’m being really honest I have slipped a few “No No” words too many times to count and I’m terrified she might repeat them. While I’m on a roll I let her watch T.V, I buy her too much, I think she’s more perfect then what is most likely true, I give her a sucker just so I can make it through the store, and one morning I forgot to feed her breakfast until we were on our way out the door and she started screaming “My breakfast! My breakfast!” To make it worse I lost her for an entire 10 seconds in the mall one day and thanks to a lady seriously sent by God I found her and she was ok. Is it terrible that My favorite part of the day is when Ellie has to do a breathing treatment which means I get 15 minutes to run in place in order to claim my exercise badge for the day?

I don’t write all this because I’m proud of it. Trust me I’m not proud! I’m not complaining either because as a mom I have it good because my amazing husband helps in so many ways. Honestly, I would much rather write all the things I’ve done right as a mother but I think moms need to see especially on a day like Mother’s Day that we are only human, not perfect and in serious need of Gods grace. As a mother who feels like I’m doing it all wrong at times I want you to know you are not alone. It is by the Grace of God and the hundreds of prayers I pray every day that I make it.

The truth is I love being a mom and I’m really trying to be a good one. It’s so hard and the worries that come with motherhood make it that much more difficult. However, Ellie is one of the best blessings that has happened to me. Until I held her in my arms for the first time I never knew how to love like this. I wouldn’t trade this messy chaos for anything else in the world.

To the single moms who do this Mom thing everyday by yourself you are a true rock star. It’s not easy but I see you rocking it!

As mothers we are worthy of being celebrated. Today is our day. When you feel like you are doing it all wrong know that in reality we all feel that way. Being a mom is tough but we can all agree it’s so worth it. Happy Mother’s Day!

Can’t stop won’t stop!

“Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home.” Luke 15: 4-6

I decided to take Ellie to the Willow Bend Play area! I had my eyes on her the entire time. She took off toward the exit at a very fast pace. I obviously took off after her. As she made it out the exit of the play area I accidentally knocked over a two year old little girl because I was frantically trying to catch up with Ellie. In the moment all that made sense was to scream “I’m so sorry” as I left the innocent child on the ground crying and continued to chase Ellie. I finally catch up with Ellie and hug her tight. Then I do the walk of shame back through the play area to apologize to the little girl and her dad. Thankfully her dad as well as three other parents understood the entire situation. They even agreed that they would have reacted in the same way.

This one moment reminds me of Gods love for us. He can’t stop and won’t stop chasing after us. While He might not knock over innocent bystanders in the process He will always chase after us.

When Jesus chased me down I fought hard going where He was taking me. I was scared. I couldn’t see the big picture. He kept chasing me but as His sheep I had to choose to follow Him. Can I just say I am so thankful I did? He had such a great plan for my life but I was going the opposite way. He loves me so much that He continued to chase me even as I continued to run. It’s the same for you. He will always chase after you but you have to be willing to follow Him into the plan He is calling you to. Are you running from His plan? Stop! Let Him put you on His shoulders and take you back to where you are called.

Washed Clean!

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”

2 Corinthians 5:17

I can Remember at the age of 10 taking two baskets of laundry (one stacked on the other) to the apartment laundry mat and then back up three flights of stairs. This will always be the (I walked three miles in the freezing snow) story I tell my kids and grandkids. I did this often and to be honest it was just part of life. However, I very strongly believe that this chore shaped me into the strong and hardworking individual that I am today. Recently I took our big blankets to the washateria because our washer at home is not large enough. While sitting waiting for the blankets to finish God reminded me to never forget where He has brought me from. I don’t mean just in the materialistic or financial way either. God has brought me from complete emotional turmoil to an unbelievable amount of wholeness, maturity and peace. I have so far to go in so many areas but as I watch our dirty laundry be washed clean I’m simply amazed at the level of cleaning God has done in my heart. I’ll be forever grateful that He has brought me so far and is continuing to take me further.

Maybe you are reading this and thinking of all the areas that need work in your heart. You might feel its impossible. I’m here to tell you God can and He wants to make every inch of your heart whole. You just have to open it up and let Him. Will you?