Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart. ~ Psalm 37:4 Dale and I always thought early in our married life we would have two children. In 1988, we built a new home … Continue reading
For all you moms who sometimes wonder if you’re getting it right…and pretty sure you aren’t lots of times—this is for you…if you’ve ever felt like you were losing the battle of the wills, or what in the world you … Continue reading
For this post to make any sense, you need a little background information about me. In 2004, I gave birth to an extremely premature little miracle named Gavin. He was 15 weeks early and had seemingly endless medical challenges related … Continue reading
I will forever remember that call I received from my son’s Sunday School teacher….”Mrs. Davis, I am not sure if you are aware of the fact that your son put a large sum of money in the offering toward the … Continue reading
It’s a day very meticulously and thoughtfully designed and planned to celebrate your daughter’s unique passions and dreams for life. The day is never shared with a sibling. It belongs to she and Mom only. It’s a day where there are no other obligations, nothing to cut short your time spent together. It begins early and goes for as long as the fun continues.
Why have a Mom / Daughter Day?
Life is way too fleeting and way too delicious not to have one now and then. You’ll learn, in your one on one conversations, things that you would most likely never hear when other siblings and family members are around.
While having lunch one afternoon with my six-year-old daughter, I asked her if she dreamed of being a Mom one day. She replied with a very well thought out answer, “Yes, I want to have 10 kids and I want to home school them.” I thought I knew her personality as well as I know my own, but that answer revealed to me that I was sitting with a little girl who is, although wonderfully close to me, very much her own person. I decided in that moment that I would make sure to have many of these Mom and daughter conversations. I want to learn as much about her as I can.
When is the best time to have a Mom / Daughter Date Day? Continue reading
If you announced one morning that all electronics, video games and television were banned for the day, would your children know what to do? Yes they can read a book but seriously, is that how you would have spent the day as a kid? No way! We knew how to play! Because of the electronic age, the art of real true “play” is fading away…unless we reclaim it Moms and Dads.
When I was a little girl, my Barbies were my world. As I choreographed their imaginary lives, I could be anyone I wanted to be. I was beautiful, smart, and it never rained on my red sports car convertible. The one thing that I loved to do most with my Barbies was decorate my “Townhouse”. And I had connections. You see my Mom (who I lovingly refer to as Martha Stewart South) worked as a consultant for Home Interiors, a home decorating company. She would save all of her old merchandise brochures and give them to me. I would painstakingly cut out framed pictures, lamps, and figurines and tape them to the walls of my townhouse. Continue reading
This week, our family was given 230 extra minutes! That’s right, we have been given the gift of time. We’ve decided to use this time as if it were a classroom, a giant cloud to fall into, a locker room, an open sky, and a huge concert hall. The interesting part of all of this is that this time is actually spent in a rather small, confined, metal frame where we each have assigned seats. We pull down our safety harnesses because sometimes, it’s a bumpy ride!
With school, baseball, and church alone, 230 minutes a week is about how much time our family spends in the car. Have you ever stopped to think about how much time your family has together in the car? With just a little bit of intentionality, this can be time that changes the dynamic of your family forever!
When you stop to think about it, there are endless things you can teach your children while you’re riding in the car.
(My son has a new interest in all the rules of the road ever since we let him drive the car across our field. What better way to prepare them for driving than to talk about it while you drive.)
- Talk about the nature that’s all around you.
- Teach a new Bible verse.
- Talk about how to be safe.
- Teach your kids the importance of money management.
- Talk about the importance of eating healthy.
A Giant Cloud to Fall Into:
- Make your car a safe haven. Let your children know that they can talk about anything during this time.
- Give your children the opportunity to begin the conversation as soon as they get in the car so that they have the chance to share personal feelings before they lose their nerve.
A Locker Room
- Give your best pep talks in the car!
- Use this time to tell your kids how proud of them you are.
- Talk about how lucky you feel to be a part of this “family team”.
An Open Sky (this is my favorite)
Use this time as if you are handing your children a helium balloon and telling them to write on their balloon anything they need to release from their life. Have them envision releasing their balloons into the open sky straight up to heaven.
- Talk about fears they are feeling.
- Talk about worries they may have about school or friends.
- Ask them whom they want to pray for.
- Encourage them to let go of any kind of regret.
A Huge Concert Hall
- Don’t forget to sing!!
- Make up new lyrics to old songs.
- See just how fast you can sing and still get the words right.
Ways to make the best of your drive time
- Eliminate the criticism (even the constructive kind). Let this time be full of encouragement and laughter.
- Mandate that all the little “boxes” as we call them, are turned off and put away…iPhones, iPads, iTouches…aye yigh yigh!
- Keep the probing questions to a minimum. If you’re dying to ask about a personal situation in your child’s life, perhaps you could first tell a similar story from your own childhood that might naturally spark a conversation instead of interrogating your child.
- Be intentional about studying the lives of your children. Look for what makes them come to life and focus on these things during your drive time.
Your daily drive time can be the way to get back your lost time! Please share with us how you spend your family drive time. We’d love to hear from you.
Kelly Breece- Blogger on The Simplified Family
(Post taken from Kelly’s blog. Check it out!)
“How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!” Isaiah 52:7
Beautiful feet! One of my favorite pictures of our grandchildren is that of just their feet. Whether there feet are wet, dry, dirty, clean or wiggly…they are precious to me! This verse has taken on a new meaning and challenge for me. My continual prayer is that the LORD GOD who created them and has blessed us with them, will raise up four bearers of good news—declaring His plan of salvation. And that their hearts will each be soft, pliable and quick to respond to His calling on their lives. Although each of them has already been given gifts, talents and specific abilities, the greatest accomplishment they can ever achieve is to have a heart open and pliable to hear and respond to their heavenly Father’s voice within. Our job as nurturers is to cultivate these gifts which are yet to be more clearly defined.
I have no greater desire for any of them—Joshua, Nathan, Elizabeth and Jaden—than that they ‘grow in the nurture and admonition of the LORD.’ To accomplish anything else is only secondary in their lives. The gifts and abilities will provide the opportunities for them to share what they learn to experience first-hand about God and His love for and through them.
What stands out the most significant to me of my three children’s lives, has not been their secular accomplishments, as great as they have been, but rather the moments that they have shared spiritual insights of their awareness of God speaking to their hearts and being real to them. When this life on earth is over, it will not be what we have accomplished, but rather WHO we have listened to that will mark our lives with completion on God’s terms.
Whose precious feet are you praying for today? Your children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, small group of children at church, your class at school? They are all precious and beautiful. How has God been leading you to nurture them? Please share with us what this looks like in your life.
Nancy (Nana to my precious grandchildren)
One of the great burdens of my heart has been how we raise a Godly next generation. There is so much competing for their minds, energy, and time. That’s why it’s as important as ever that we recognize our roles and participate in bringing up the next generation as a remnant—passing the baton of faith boldly.
In Matthew 28:19-20, Jesus says, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you….” We often hear the emphasis on the concept of going to the nations to preach the Gospel. I’m certainly for that!
While we should never express that works are what save us, the Bible teaches that it is possible to grow in the sight of God and man:
“Do not let kindness and truth leave you;
Bind them around your neck,
Write them on the tablet of your heart,
So you will find favor and good repute
In the sight of God and man.”
–Proverbs 3:3-4 (NASB)
The NIV translates the first phrase as, “Let love and faithfulness never leave you.” Either way, you can see that adhering to truth is the key to unlock Godly wisdom and grow in the sight of God and others. As Proverbs 8:35 says, “For he who finds me (wisdom) finds life and obtains favor from the Lord.”
There are two examples in Scripture for “growing in favor” with God and man. The first is Jesus. Continue reading
My prayer life ebbs and flows. What about yours? Some days my prayer life is so rich and other days it is lacking simply because I find my self agitated on the inside. Not angry or irritated, but agitated. It feels like a washing machine stirring the laundry. It’s that kind of feeling like I need to be moving all the time or when my brain feels like static. The only way to describe it, is that it resembles the signal on the TV when a channel won’t come in and it has that snowy affect and sound on the screen. These feelings are indicators that something is amiss. Something in my heart or something in the world around me is amiss. It is a warning, that shouts in a still small voice, “Wendy you need to be still and know that I am God and tell me what is going on“. At that moment I just begin to tell God what I am feeling.
At times, this agitated feeling begins concerning one of my children. I begin to become aware of Satan’s strategy to steal, kill, and destroy. In moments like this I know that my battle is not against flesh and blood, but against powers and principalities. As a result, I feel like I am carrying a sword and swinging it wildly at an enemy I cannot see. But the Spirit within me is on alert. So I do what I do most everyday. I pray the armor of God for my children. Continue reading