Most know that parenting a strong willed toddler, especially a girl toddler, is well, trying. I am blessed with a two year old daughter that has somehow bottled up the vigor of a lion inside of her little frame. She is hilarious beyond her years, and stubborn to the point of maternal mental break downs. Yes, she is going to be a woman with grit I have no doubt. I am so thankful for her just the way she is! I constantly pray for wisdom as her mother, and I am one to hold my parenting to a standard that sometimes, well most times, has to be replaced with the Grace and Forgiveness of God. And after a moment that happened in the shuffle to get my daughter to bed in a timely manner, I heard the whisper of the Lord remind me what my roll is in her life right now as her mother, and that is to “Remind her what she IS”.
This may seem like something a little intense when raising a toddler however, I have found that its actually the simplicity that makes it so difficult. With there being billions of parenting books, blogs, suggestions (most often times unwanted) from family members and friends, and the stigma that haunts most mothers: our compulsion to compare our parenting to others. With all of these forces combined it seems impossible to know what path or style to choose for your child. We all have this idealistic way we want to parent, because we have the idealistic way we want our children to turn out in our heads. Honestly, what parent doesn’t WANT their children to be Happy and Ambitious about their faith and their life! That is the best as a mother, to have happy children! But in the midst of a Toddler melt down, and trying to steer the discipline boat, I ran onto a mound that encouraged me to redirect the sails of this ship.
When my daughter gets tired there is a FINE line between going to bed peacefully and the tipping point where all emotion, and reason fly out the window and she becomes a mess. Last night was one of those nights. As I put her in the bed and tried to reason with her, I told her “You are not listening to mommy, you do not scream at mommy, you are not being kind, you are not doing what mommy and daddy are asking you.” And then she stopped crying, looked at me and quivered her little lip and burst out, “I don’t have Jesus in my heart anymore!?” With a questioning look on her little face. I lost it. I cried out and scooped her up. And in that moment God whispered, “Tell her what she IS!” So I expressed to her that even if we do things that are not what we should that NOTHING and NOONE can take Jesus out of our hearts, not even ourselves! One he is in our hearts he is what we call “Happily Stuck”. She calmed down and we were able to snuggle, I felt so compelled to tell her how much she is loved by me but by Jesus EVEN MORE! I couldn’t believe that at her age she is already thirsty for these type of reassurances and answers in her life. I don’t think that it was wrong to discipline her in the way I did, but now when I want to correct or direct her, I want to do it by reminding her WHAT SHE IS, and that is a Child of God. THAT is the most important thing I can do as her mommy.
3 John 1:4 “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in Truth.”
Have Grit Sweet Ones,
It’s holiday season is a time when many of us travel to be with loved ones, family and close friends. We show kindness to the ones we loves through great food, time, laughter, and gifts. We’re sounded by Christmas Carols, eggnog, and beautiful lights on the Christmas tree.
On the contrary, this is also a time of year where people are reminded of loved ones who have passed away, relationships that didn’t last, and dreams that haven’t yet manifested in the time desired. People who are going through these feelings and moments of pain suffer in silence. They smile and share laughs through standard conversation and cry silently behind closed doors. As those around them share sentiments of joy, they wear a mask to hide tears and sadness. Through the pain, they allow thoughts and memories to dig a deeper wound of pain—which makes their silent turmoil almost unbearable.
As we prepare for Christmas and the New Year, let’s make it a priority to be kind and intentional toward all of those around us. Let’s hug a little longer, show care and concern with authenticity, and give love freely and in abundance. Those suffering rarely open up to cry for help, so your love could be the very thing to help them get through this season.
The end of November is here, yes already, and with it comes THANKSGIVING! I know the commercial world would love it if we all forgot about Thanksgiving and went straight to Christmas, but Thanksgiving is such a vital holiday that we don’t need to just skip over. The heart of the holiday is in the name, giving thanks. Focusing our minds and hearts on the people we are thankful for and the circumstances we are thankful for. Sure giving thanks doesn’t generate money, but it generates gratitude and togetherness, things that can’t be bought in a store Thursday evening. Remember the days when Thanksgiving meant cooking all morning, eating all day, and then sleeping it away all evening until 12:00am came along and TRUE black Friday began? Now, Black “Friday” begins 6:00pm completely cutting between quality family time all in the name of money. Let’s take back Thanksgiving! Let’s make it how special it use to be when we were growing up! I would like to present to you The Strong Thanksgiving Challenge, in which we focus on thanks and gratitude and time spent with love ones, not rushing off to go gather more material things but rather truly being together and giving and showing thanks!
- Put all electronics in a box when guest enter your house or the house that is hosting, this will bring MINDFULNESS
- Help cook or prepare the table with the older generation, this will bring TOGETHERNESS
- Create conversation amongst the table when dinner starts, this will generate MEMORIES
- Let the older generation talk about life when they were growing up and truly listen, this will bring GRATITUDE
- Play a game with your loved ones after dinner, laugh as hard as possible, this will bring THANKFULNESS
- Do not shop for black Friday until 12:00 am Friday morning, this will bring SIMPLICITY
Let us know if you accept and fulfill the challenge and how it changed your Thanksgiving this year!
With love and big smiles,
I know you look at me and see Super-Mama, as that is what you call me when I fix your boo-boo’s or find your toy that you thought had gone missing forever. You feel safe in my arms as I read bedtime stories to you and pray over you before we go to sleep. You feel confident when I say “Great Job!” or “Wow! What an awesome idea.” You feel brave when I remind you that God makes you mighty and strong and you realize that you can conquer anything, even your stinky little brother. I know through your eyes I am unbreakable and super even when I have to correct you, you look at me with those forever hopeful eyes and understand why mommy got upset with you. I have a major secret to tell…are you ready?
My superhero armor is only this strong because of you. You see before you I really only thought about myself. My days were filled with what I wanted to do and when I wanted to do it. I was pretty lost, just doing what everyone else was doing and felt so empty. Then you came into our lives, forever changing it by adding more color, boldness, and truth disguised in tutu’s and singing. I feel super when I get to help you in any way. You make me feel safe when you ask to cuddle up with me or kiss my head when you know I have a headache. You give me confidence by asking me questions and truly wanting to know the answer. You fill me up with bravery every morning that we are blessed to wake up and start our days. I feel unbreakable, I feel strong and powerful because of you. All my superhero qualities are a product of you.
So I guess what I want to say is thank you. Thank you for finding me, believing in me, trusting me and molding me into this confident Super-Mama! Thank you for all the lessons and the plot twist that you often bring about and thank you for being you so fearlessly and unapologetically. Thank you for pulling out the Super hero in me. I love you daughter.
We as wives have a personal responsibility for praying for our husbands. I mean, think about it, if you don’t pray for him fervently, then who will? I have found in my personal journey with my marriage that praying for my husband often stops me from nagging him and the fruit of praying for your husband goes beyond the physical world and into the spiritual world. There is a spiritual war going on all around us and the only thing that fights it is our faithful and fervent prayers. The devil is at work, fighting to get into our hearts and heads and the first place he goes to attack is the head of the home.
The Bible urges us in 1 peter 5:8, Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. We need to be alert and sober minded not only for us, not only for our children but for our husbands too. Physically, we can’t fight anything for our husbands but spiritually, we are prayer warriors, faithfully and fervently praying against every spirit that tries to attach itself to our husbands.
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.
It’s important to know that when your husband seems to be going through something, acting a certain way, or struggling with something that it’s not him that you need to be angry with, rather a spiritual force that is attacking him. We need to put on the full armor of God so that we can stand our ground and fight back. Don’t get angry at your husband, that’s what the enemy wants, you two divided and angry. Instead, focus your energy on praying against the enemy and get angry at him by praying fervently to our God. If you cover your husband with the blood of Jesus and His promises and words the enemy has to flee.
Our husbands are mighty and strong but that doesn’t mean they don’t need our prayers. Commit yourself to praying for your husband daily. I challenge you ask the Holy Spirit for wisdom and insight on what exactly he is struggling with right now and watch the power of God move through him. Write your prayers down and be amazed at how God answers them. Pray for your man and watch it transform him and even you!
With love and big smiles,