Journey To One Thousand Gifts 37-45

I’ve been down and out lately; Sick with the flu, keeping busy and living a careful life to the Lord. Mostly just sick with the flu LOL!  I wondered how I would do it all, but then a friend reminded me that I don’t; God does. See in my weakness Christ is made strong; which means I count on God’s strength to redeem my lack of consistency. We are forever supposed to rely on the Lord to fight for us because he is mighty, he knows the roads blindfolded. I realized that if I continue to try to please God with my own solutions and power, I shame the cross that Jesus so humbly allowed Himself to be pinned to. My goal for this week is to not ask God for anything and in return give over everything; praise power, will, strength, prayer. I want to practice more application and less mouthacation if you know what I mean. Okay so Here we go: Will you see the little things in life that God has given? Will you acknowledge with me the beauty of the life that he gave? If so, stay right there and Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are..

Gifts Redeemed: 

37. My soul

38. Time with kids

39. My fears

A Gift Silent, Still, Strong:

40. Peace

41. The air I breathe

42. The Lord’s hand

Gifts Undervalued:

43. Time

44. Presence

45. Goodness

James 1:2-18

Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.

If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do.

Believers who are poor have something to boast about, for God has honored them. 10 And those who are rich should boast that God has humbled them. They will fade away like a little flower in the field. 11 The hot sun rises and the grass withers; the little flower droops and falls, and its beauty fades away. In the same way, the rich will fade away with all of their achievements.

12 God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. 13 And remember, when you are being tempted, do not say, “God is tempting me.” God is never tempted to do wrong, and he never tempts anyone else. 14 Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away. 15 These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death.

16 So don’t be misled, my dear brothers and sisters. 17 Whatever is good and perfect comes down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow. 18 He chose to give birth to us by giving us his true word. And we, out of all creation, became his prized possession

In your struggling this week where can you seek an opportunity for God’s great Joy?? I’d like to hear.

A work in progress

In my last post I talked about some habits I’d like to start forming and some I’d like to get rid of. So here’s a list of some of the things I’d like to accomplish over this month and coming.

Form

  1. Smile more
  2. Continue to be consistent with my daily schedule of readings
  3. Start a weekly bible study with my kids
  4. Stay on track with planning my meals and laundry
  5. Teach my kids the S.O.A.P method
  6. Be patient
  7. Laugh longer
  8. Meditate longer
  9. Cook healthier
  10. Organize better
  11. Have more quiet time
  12. Let kids watch less T.V
  13. Do more Activities as a family
  14. Read every night to my children and talk through their bible verse in-depth with them

Kick to the curb

  1. Impatience
  2. Leaving clothes in the dryer for a few days
  3. Buying a lot of unhealthy snacks
  4. Going to bed at 11:30/12 at night
  5. Forgetting Birthdays (don’t judge me! lol)

Seems like a long list of habits but it all leads to a healthier and more consistent relationship with the Lord. What are some habits you’d like to form this month? I’d like to hear! 🙂

Choose Love 

Journey Through One Thousand Gifts 24-36

Going into October I’d like to form some habits that stick and conjure up some attitudes that bring joy and the light of Jesus to those I encounter. This month, I already know will be full of ups and down as I toil with change but I know that the Lord is doing a new work and something great within me. Counting blessings has forced me every time to look at everything around me and show my gratitude to God. I would like to make a daily habit of it until it comes naturally. So stick with me and Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are..

Gifts Unexpected:

25. A new Job

26. Love

27.Encouragement

Gifts Said:

28. I love You!

29. Have a great day!

30. I’m Sorry

Gifts Accomplished:

31: School

32. Joining a small group

33. Motherhood

Gifts Enjoying:

34. Time Alone

35. family

36. Friendships

This is my gift in HIS word today. The Lord chose to reconcile himself to someone like me, not because I did anything special but because he loves me.

For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross (Colossians 1:19-20)

Joy in suffering

This morning I sat down at what was seemingly my breaking point. My stress and suffering was beginning to wear on me. I’m exhausted, overwhelmed, and overworked and while I began to see my frustration I sat down to look at Jesus and his life. Over the past week I have been reading the book of Colossians and in that I have grown so much. This morning I left off at Colossians 1:24-29/2:1-5. In this passage Paul expressed the importance of his diligence to God’s work, his obedience and his suffering. On my daily reading with the Good Morning GirlsWhitney asks, “What are the keys to being effective for Christ in the midst of challenging circumstances?” This particular question reminded of how selfish I am and how much more that everything I go through or do is all for the glory of God. It caused me to redirect my thinking and turn my thoughts, anger, frustration and stress over to the Lord in return for his joy. In verse 29 Paul says, “For this I toil struggling with all his energy that he powerfully works in me.”(ESV) (“That’s why I work and struggle so hard, depending on Christ’s mighty power that works within me.”NLT) As a Christian living under God, it is important for me not to rely on myself but to pull and draw from the Lord in everything that I do. The bible reminds us of how weak we are and that through the Strength of the Lord are we able to live and breathe and have our being.

Acts 17: 24 “He is the God who made the world and everything in it. Since he is Lord of heaven and earth, he doesn’t live in man-made temples, 25 and human hands can’t serve his needs—for he has no needs. He himself gives life and breath to everything, and he satisfies every need. 26 From one man he created all the nations throughout the whole earth. He decided beforehand when they should rise and fall, and he determined their boundaries.

27 “His purpose was for the nations to seek after God and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him—though he is not far from any one of us. 28 For in him we live and move and exist. As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring. (NLT)

How great is it to depend on the giver of life, the one who can’t be satisfied by anything we give who is high above every name if we decide to bow down to him or not! I asked myself, “when I am frustrated or at the point of breaking am I really fully relying on God and the power that comes from him? Am I really depending on the hope that Jesus gave? Am I really relinquishing my right in exchange for the Lordship of Jesus? I think you can conclude my answer.

From Paul we can grasp that we can rejoice in the Lord through our suffering because of who we are in Christ and that through our suffering, though it is okay for us to be human, we should be diligent in the work that God has called us to. It is in our suffering that God is glorified. Also, that we cannot by any means depend on our own strength to get us through any of this. Jesus is Lord because we couldn’t do this by ourselves. He is Lord because we could not satisfy the wrath of God with our own being or sacrifices. Jesus is the only thing that has pleased the Lord and that is continually pleasing the Lord and because of that we can only walk according to his Lordship, honoring the Lord by walking in the steps of Jesus to do the work that we were called to. So the key to being effective for Christ in the midst of circumstances is relying on the strength of the Son and the joy that the Lord has already given to us in that.

I pray that God gives joy to the one who is struggling to suffer in his name today and peace in the midst of that to understand that God is in control of all things at all times, not just when we can’t figure out the answer to our problem.

WEEKLY CHALLENGE:  Are you in the midst of a challenging circumstance?  Ask a trusted friend to pray that God will give you joy in the midst of your struggle, and that He will use you during your struggle in whatever way He sees fit, for His glory.  Then have that friend keep you accountable in the days and weeks to come! (From the Good Morning Girls)

Counting My Blessings

There is an amazing pro to participating in the blogger world. You get to meet amazing people and partake in amazing opportunities. Fortunately I came across Sheena’s blog post on the mobsociety website which lead me to her blog. Her post spoke directly to me and as I read. I literally recounted my steps just a half hour ago. I sat down at the computer scrambling to just clear my mind and rid myself of the guilty feeling I was trying to digest. I couldn’t find the words to explain but I wanted to exhale it into a blog post. It’s so amazing how God works. Her words were exactly mine, her situation was identical to mine, her feelings I felt. I moseyed on over to her blog to read more and to my surprise, something so great caught my attention. Sheena counts her blessings everyday on her blog and she is aiming to do so until she reaches 1,000 blessings. You can read how she got started here. How many of us allow our daily activities and life blind to us from giving thanks to the Lord for all he has does done? I was so excited to see this and decided that I should participate. I want to form a habit of looking to the Lord in everything that I do in every moment of my life. In counting my blessings everyday I’m sure God will unveil HIS faithful character to me motivating me to be just like HIM and turn completely towards HIM everyday. With that being said, look at me, I’m counting my blessings…

Eneulogeo (Greek) – to bless

Psalm 34: 1-3

 I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.My soul shall make her boast in the Lord: the humble shall hear thereof, and be glad.O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together.

Gifts in HIS Word:

 1. My dear children, I am writing this to you so that you will not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate who pleads our case before the Father. He is Jesus Christ, the one who is truly righteous.

2.  He himself is the sacrifice that atones for our sins—and not only our sins but the sins of all the world.                     (1 John 2:1-2)

3. Christ is the visible image of the invisible God.He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation,t 16 for through him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on earth.He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see—such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world. Everything was created through him and for him. 17 He existed before anything else, and he holds all creation together (Colossians 1:15-17)

Gifts Funny:

4. Walking down the street today I asked Kid Hero what he learned in school and he replied, “A is for apple! A is for apple! B is for Ball! Be my echo! Be my echo! very loudly

5. Hulk Smash giving himself a blue tattoo with markers all over his arm

6. Mommy

Gifts Finished:

7. This post

8. Dinner

9. Family devotion

Gifts Autumn:

10. The leaves

11. Heat on a chilly day

12. Rain

Gifts Eucharisteo:

13. Salvation

14. Smiling little boys

15. Love

Gifts Quiet:

16. Nighttime with God

17. Bedtime

18. Nature

Gifts Made, Masked or Marveled:

19. Canned Peaches and pears

20. Hulk Smash’s face

21. Rain Clouds

Gifts Shared:

22. My children

23. Family

24. Fellowship

Blessings come in all shapes and forms. Believe it or not, everything around us is a blessing in some way. I’m on a quest to consistently show my gratitude to the Lord for the great things he has already done and is doing. You should join me and so many others! Come on and Dare to live fully, right where you are.

Confessions of a SuperMOM wannabe

Nobody ever told me that being a mother of boys was a daunting task that takes courage to approach. I didn’t ask for boys, I even got upset when I had my ultrasound. I didn’t understand why I didn’t get girls, I knew I would be perfect at raising and understanding my own kind but I took the assignment of being a boy mom. I thought I had it planned out. I would give a command, they would do it. I would wipe their faces after they finish wrestling in the grass with their dad and tuck them in for bed. I wasn’t prepared for the seizures, the asthma, the temper tantrums that lasted for hours, the stares, the comments, the frustration, the struggle, the lost for patience. When I applied to be a mom I didn’t expect my requirements to say:

  • Must be willing to work weekends, nights, and holidays.
  • Must be able to draw weird stick figures
  • serious amounts of patience required.
  • Medical experience a plus.
  • Must be experienced in applying bandages and neosporin.
  • Tough cookie a plus.
  • Must be willing to work weekends, nights, and holidays.
  • Medical experience a plus.
  • Basic knowledge of boy-nomics
  • Must be practiced in the art of boo-boo kissing.
  • Must have at least a base knowledge in video game lingo.
  • Moderate to advanced Super Hero understanding recommended.
  • Aversion to blood not ideal.  This job can involve trauma situations.
  • Must be willing to deal with mass quantities of feces removal.
  • Must be able to leap tall building blocks in a single bound.
  •  Stain removal expertise helpful.
  • Sense of humor imperative.
  • Minor degree in zoology a plus, prerequisites in animal handling even better.
  • Referee experience beneficial.
  • Tolerance to the smell of urine necessary.
  • Perseverance in toilet scrubbing required.
  • Sword fighting experience a plus.
  • Must not hold too dearly to breakable items.
  • An intricate knowledge of Lego handling useful.
  • Rough-housing will be sometimes required of applicant. (Some bullets taken from this post on mobsociety.com)

Many nights I’d pray that the Lord would just take away the “tribulation” that we had faced but it never hit me that maybe the Lord chose me, or us for this. Raising boys is a task that only the strongest women can complete. It’s like running through a training maze, every little course prepares you for the next course ahead. I don’t think I’d ever be able to keep going without the grace of Jesus. I mess up repeatedly, I get lazy from time to time and often I lack the mental capacity to just deal. Anyone ever felt like this? My boys have been an intricate part of the work that God is doing in my life. After each hurdle I jump, I earn more wisdom, grow more patient and understand myself in light of Jesus. In some ways I feel that parenting is God’s funny way of saying, “take a walk in my shoes!” I couldn’t imagine having to parent billions of children with different personalities. Even more, the one’s who I provide for, protect and nurture and they deny me as their parent. How hurtful is that?

In my journey as a parent I’m learning to leave fantasy at the door and budget with my reality. No one has perfect children but we do. We have children who God matched us with to complete HIS glory. In my perfect world my children  wouldn’t bother me when I am busy, or scream when I say no to the cookies in target; they wouldn’t ask a million questions in a minute time frame, cry loudly because it’s too early for them to get up for school, write on my light wood table with permanent black marker, tell me no, do leaps in a single bound into the tv, unravel a whole roll of toilet paper and stop up the toilet with it,  poop in their underwear and hide under the table for twenty minutes until I smelled it, or eat up all my food. LOL! I can see some looking at this saying, “yea that’s the perfect world”. Most times I would complain that it’s them and not me but I’ve learned over time that parenting another child takes unselfishness and the willingness to serve and that’s something I am not by human default. I read a post on this blog and was immediately inspired and convicted by Kris’ willingness to serve her family better and lead them in motherly fashion in the presence of the Lord. As I read I see her growing more and more unselfishly and I’m so glad she decides to share.

It’s hard as a single mom to show my boys what it is to be a woman and not get them confused with what it is to be a man because I’m doing a consolidated job. It’s important for them to see what I go through though so that they know what a biblical man and woman are not. Not saying that you aren’t walking in your biblical roles as men and women if you are a single parent. I’m just saying, biblically a man is to provide, protect and lead his family in a servant capacity. I want my boys to know what a Godly woman looks like; a woman who is feminine biblically, who submits to the Lord first and protects the purity of her relationship with the Lord and knows her role as a woman so that when her husband comes along, she isn’t the wife who is controlling, loud in her ways, disrespectful and contentious. Of course there is so much more to being a biblical woman. I also want my boys to know how to be brothers in the Lord and to guard themselves and others against sin in their different relationships but because they don’t see godly men assuming their roles as men too often, it’s cloudy with a chance of wrong direction. Kris’ blog helps me a lot to understand my role as a woman, even more a single woman with children and that it’s okay to be a single mom and show my boys that without compromising my role. I love her post about loving, serving and leading.

Even with my boys not being the perfect children I’ve learned to cater to their strengths and weaknesses. I have one child who is fairly independent and one who is not. One child who is outspoken about everything he does and one who asks a lot of questions. I’ve learned to serve them in their journey as little super-kids training to be godly grown men and to identify different areas of their lives where god has chosen to pay special attention. Their need for love is at an all time high at this stage of their lives but I know that God chose me for this role to bring me a lot closer to HIM and to stay close to him and vice versa. What is your story or confession? What do you feel God is or has taught you through your children? I’d love to hear!

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A Father to the Fatherless-Standing on the rock

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Walking down the street hand in hand with my twenty muppet toes. The biggest little muppet rubbing chapstick all over his face and the littlest muppet yelling to the top of his lungs “get off of me mommy!” Pulling and tugging and my patience growing dim I begin to speak quietly to God, just as if the time had frozen. Looking forward I thought, “God, how do I do this!? Will I one day see gentlemen that honor their women? Men who will stand up and do as you have called them to? Men of God who love you whole heartedly…Men? How do I accomplish this task with such light input? A few days ago I was listening to a podcast about unredeemed fears. The minister stated that fear was the act of living life as God is not the ultimate authority to whom all must give an account and also believing that he won’t provide out of the abundance of HIS character. I heard God say, “I will raise my children, I will provide, they are mine.” My biggest fear has always been failing, at anything, and because of that I hyperventilate everything in my life. I intubate my dreams and goals and distract myself from doing anything that the Lord ask me to do. In other words I detest the thought of God being so mighty and so powerful, so all-knowing and eternal that I revoke the chance of him even being the Lord of Lords or Adonai. When the people of Israel were in the wilderness they focused on the massivity and eternality of God, they focused on the fact that God, in the midst of all they have done, all of their sin, was bigger than their present state, their sinful hearts and even their sacrifices. So with this thought I decided to take my focus off of my own strengths and weaknesses and began to see God in his entirety and to search his character so that I may know how to raise my boys. God is faithful to remain and he never ever changes. It’s the fact that we change and we worry by default over things we cannot control and did not create that helps us believe that God will not provide for us and being in God’s will and walking upright doesn’t mean that we always have to have our act together. It means we live our lives in accordance with God’s grace. When we are in God’s will and walking upright there is especially nothing that the Lord will not do that is good for our life. We may ask for a job with benefits and vacation time but he might provide a job that supplies what is needed and takes care of what is needed. We may ask for a yacht and he may provide a motor boat. Be faithful over little and in return God will trust and provide you with more to be trusted with whether spiritual, physical or material. He wants to know that whatever he gives to you, that he can trust you with the glory that he will bring through it. EVERYTHING is about God, it’s never about us but it’s always about his glory. I’m learning that in my every day struggles. I’m learning to thank God for answering my prayers and to acknowledge him for answering them the way he thought they should be. My boys are healthy, growing,and  learning. They have attitudes that stink at times, they may have disabilities or may not be the child that sits quietly to color,they may not listen all the time when I’m telling them about the Lord but I know that God has opened their ears to hear what he says and I know that he will keep them. Our struggles aren’t for us or because God doesn’t like us. They are for his glory and we were chosen to help execute that plan. We as mothers must not forget that when we get tired or weary. We must learn to be faithful in giving our children up to the Lord and teaching them and admonishing them in the Lord. We must grow with them in love and be active in showing them as well as telling them. True authentic christian character is about holding fast to God, letting him fill our hearts and walking with a righteous reputation unto him. I thank God for the lesson in obedience that he has to teach me over and over; because when trials come it’s easy to forget how good he is and what he’s done but when I let his peace rule in my heart and his joy comfort me, that is a friendly reminder that my life nor theirs is not our own.

God’s peace

Choose Love

Nykiah