Tuesday, May 14

"Aloneness" can hit us at the strangest times. The worst time is when it happens inside the church walls. You would think this would not be the case. But church is not a place where people are perfect. It's a place where people are sinners saved by grace. And where there is sin, there is imperfection. Hearts can get hurt. Not only can it happen to us, but if we aren't careful and deliberate with the words we choose to say to another woman, we can be the one who unknowingly makes another woman feel isolated. On the flip side if you are the woman who begins to have these feelings of aloneness at church, don't be discouraged. YOU can be proactive and know this is a weakness you have felt and tackle it head on beforehand with the LORD's help. I have experienced this deceptive feeling before at church and that is why I share it with you. This is how I handle the feelings that seek to destroy my heart while seeking the LORD.

1. Know Your Weakness
There are topics of conversation that can immediately put up an imaginary wall between two women in a packed room. Children vs. No children. Married vs. Single. Married vs. Divorced. Working mom vs. Stay at home mom. School Mom vs. Home school Mom. I could go on. But you get the picture. Know your weakness. Know the areas that you struggle with and deal with the insecurity with the LORD. 

The longer you hide your feelings about your life from yourself and aren't confident in WHO you are in the LORD, the easier it will become to feel alone at church. Why? Because the topic of conversation will all of a sudden come up and strike a nerve and expose the insecure feeling or choices you have not dealt with. Whether its the choices you made in the past or the choices you are making at present, or just an insecure feeling about yourself,  the more you push your weakness aside, the greater are for an attack against the enemy (It's not the woman. It's something greater! The enemy comes to steal, kill and destroy).

2. Pray Before Church
It's something you do at church and something you probably do before church. But do you spread your weaknesses out before God before going to church knowing that you have had a struggle? If not, this is the BEST thing to do before walking into the place where you have felt under attack. My struggles have been many. But I know that when I lay it out before God, pray about it before I go to church, my heart walls are strong and not susceptible to a surprise attack.

3. Remember It's Only A Feeling
Feelings change like the clouds that float by in the sky. God's truth does not. It's solid. It's secure. It's the true voice you need to be preaching to yourself when the "feeling" is clouding your mind. Your past does not define you. Your present does not define you. They are significant life experiences that have happened to you. YOU are a child of God. A daughter of the Most High King!!!

4. Change Your Friends
I am not saying be rude to the people that have hurt you unknowingly. Extend grace. But if there topic of conversations and the way they talk is too painful for you to handle, seek to make new friends. You don't have to best buds with everyone. But you do need a woman who you can trust to lift you up and you lift her up. Women who don't have a clue that they have torn you down, even if you have shared that with them, don't get it. You are wasting your time in a relationship that is not going anywhere. Pray about seeking new friends and always be kind to the women you used to spend time with. Pray for God to open their eyes to how they have cut others off by the words of their mouth.

Last, it's reflection time.
Ask yourself the following questions:

"Am I doing my part to make an effort to get to know others?"
"Do the words of my mouth build others up?"
"Have I really poured myself into making connections beyond the church walls with this/ these women?"
"Have I really dealt with my insecurity?"
"Is this a relationship I need to re-evaluate?"
"Why have I felt alone at church?" 

Dear sister, you are NOT ALONE!!! Many women have felt the same way not just at church but other places. Get to the root of your feeling. Pray. Reflect. Remember it's a feeling and it will pass. And if you need to seek new relationships seek them out. God didn't send Jesus to win the victory over sin and death so we could always feel alone. He gave us the victory so we could overcome these things on earth. But you have to bring it to Him and let Him teach and guide you.

Dear LORD, please heal my hurt. My feelings of aloneness. Help me get to the root of this issue that is keeping me from being effective for you at church. Give me truth to combat these feelings that destroy my heart. Show me the next steps I should take and help me walk forward looking at YOU with each step I take.
In Jesus name, Amen.

Pin It!

Monday, May 13

Happy Monday y'all!

Some days, I don't need to read a devotion. I just need to sit at the table of the LORD and feast on His word.

Today, I give you a Scripture Feast of God's Word from the book of Psalms.

Take a few minutes to: Sit.
 Simply run your cursor over each verse and it will show up.

Psalm 18:1-3

Psalm 119:41

Psalm 19:8

Psalm 31:1

Psalm 105:4

Psalm 91:4

Psalm 75:1

Psalm 73: 26

Psalm 143:10

Lord, may each woman who reads your word today in this post be lifted up, renewed and strengthened to face a new week. May she feel closer to you by the reading of your word. Satisfy her hunger for you. You are a great God and are greatly to be praised. We thank you that you are a God who loves us, who is with us, and is always working in our lives. In Jesus name we pray, AMEN.

Pin It!

Wednesday, May 8

DEAR Mother: A Letter to Myself as a New Mother 
(What I would tell myself about motherhood now that I didn't know then!)

Dear Mom,
Oh sweet girl, congratulations! You have become a mother! Treasure each passing moment. Your son will change so quickly and you will forget so many things.  Write each phase down on paper so you won't easily forget. Oh, your brain has now become a mommy brain and it functions way different than your old brain. You will forget stuff! So write!!!
Stare at your boy, because each day he is growing, changing. One day you will wake up and he will be grown.
Never look back. Never live your life in the "what I could have done" thoughts. Just learn from your mistakes and grow and change as a mom. READ lots of books on parenting to help equip you with ideas on how to be a better parent. Glean what works for you and teaches you something you didn't know. But be careful not to forget your main resource as a parent- the BIBLE- use truth as your main guide to become a godly parent.  
Have fun!!!! Your boy will want to play outside, catch bugs, play in the dirt, and make funny noises with his mouth. LAUGH! Have fun with him.  
Your heart will now ache in a way it has never ever ached before. It will ache for someone besides yourself or your husband. When your boy is sad, gets hurt, or gets his feelings hurt, you will hurt. You heart will ache. Long after  your boy is comforted, you will still will ache for him after he has forgotten all about it. Don't dwell on the ache too long because you don't want his hurts to become what he identifies himself with or how you parent him. Failing, hurting, falling down....these are ALL ways God is growing him and you. 
There will be days when you say to yourself, "I need a break." TAKE ONE! Learn to communicate to your husband that you need a break. Don't wait for him to see that you need a break. He most likely won't even be aware that you need a break. He can't read your mind. Just Learn to take a break for an hour to just breathe! Then rise up the next day with hopefulness and take it on with new eyes. Never give up teaching your child. You will feel like a broken record at times, but keep teaching.  
Pray for mommy friends. Friends that you can grow in the LORD with and your kids can grow with their kids. This is a hard one. Because it takes work. Most women are already secure in their group of friends and find it difficult to step outside the group to deepen a relationship with a new friend. Don't give up trying. Focus on being a friend to all mommies you meet and never take anything personally. Mommies are busy. 
Pour Scripture into your boys heart continually through reading, memorizing and songs. Talk about it during your day. Point his heart continually on knowing and pleasing the LORD.  
Learn to talk to your boy each day. Give him time to tell you what is on his mind. You will be surprised in learning that he will begin to tell you things if you ask and just listen. 
Don't worry your mommy moments away by focusing on the things your boy is having difficulty getting like potty training, leaving places and not sharing. He will get it. Be patient with him. GOD IS PATIENT with you!!! 
Hold his hand as long as he will let you because one day he might not want to hold your hand. Hug and kiss him and tell him you love him continually. As fast as he came into your life and you had to learn how to care for him continually, you will also have to learn to let go. To let him learn. To let him gain independence. Your heart will hurt every time he does more for himself because you will know he is becoming less dependent on you. It's the way God intended. Jesus grew in wisdom, in stature and in favor with God and man.  
There will be many days you wonder about your mothering. It's called "doubt." That's OK. It's totally normal. Don't worry about the "doubt" feeling. It comes and goes. The more your worry about "how" you are mothering, the less focused you become as a mother. Learn to replace your doubts with truth and prayer. 
Discipline brings life and freedom to your boy. He needs boundaries. Learn what works for you. Determine a plan that you KEEP consistently. That means if you have to leave a playdate for him to learn the consequence of his actions, leave. Your boy needs to learn that he is not the one controlling your parenting. He needs to learn the word "no." God told Adam and Eve the word "no." He followed through with the consequence by expelling them from the garden. He knew best. So do you. 
When you think everything is going well in your parenting. Don't get comfortable with that feeling, because everything can change in a minute. Learn to identify when your boy is moving from one stage of life to another. Appreciate the moments or days when there isn't change.   
It's OK to not wash your hair some days. (Big earrings and lip gloss can distract every one's eyes from looking at your hair!)  
Some days, a cookie is the best way for you to get a little more done in the home. (smile)
You will begin to have a feeling like you can't get everything done, like you are always behind. You aren't. Learn to take a few minutes to just breathe. Then, try to get done what is possible to get done in a day. Learn to make goals for your week and then pursue them. You will feel a sense of accomplishment in doing so.  
Finally, at the end of the day, you are a GOOD parent. No one will give you a performance review. Stay teachable. Stay young at heart. Stay close to the LORD. Remember, feeling inadequate is how you learn. It's not a sign that you are a bad parent. It's a sign that you are teachable. Love the job God has given you and take it to heart. You have great purpose!

Pin It!

Monday, May 6

My church is having a missions conference this week which began yesterday morning. It has already been an incredible time of learning as well as worship. The conference theme is "GO." There are 25 missionaries from around the world visiting us and we have had the opportunity to hear their hearts as well as encourage them. As I listened to two of the missionaries speak about their work and what God had been showing them in their part of the world, I found myself asking the question, "Are we (as followers of Christ) really going?" where we live in our communities? 

Are we really living out the Gospel on a daily basis in our neighborhoods, work, and schools? Are we really going? Are we really moving when it comes to sharing the Gospel? 

                   Ordinary People/ Extraordinary Obedience
What struck my heart is that these people were just like you and I going about their business when they felt the Holy Spirit's leading to leave their life in the states and go to another country. The difference is that they answered the call, made the sacrifice, and obeyed God despite what they felt or could see. 

One of the missionaries I listened to yesterday left their jobs to go to Vienna, Austria where most of the people do not want any part to do with God because of the history of the church during the Roman Empire. He shared that although it was a lovely place, it was a very dark place in terms of believing in Christ. He even shared how he and his wife can even be taken as religious fanatics by most people in Vienna. He said the most important witness to the Austrians was not so much hearing about theology, but seeing truth lived out in daily life. 

Wow! Isn't that what people want to see here in our country too?

At present, I may not be able to go overseas on mission, but I have a mission here at home. 
Am I really going out on mission for Christ where I am? 
Am I really reaching outside the church walls to shine light to a dark world?

What about you? What is your mission? Is it the neighbors next door? The friend your child plays with? The co-worker who constantly attacks your beliefs? A family member who is lost or far from God? Who is it you can "go" and tell the gospel to this week? This month? This year?

Today's post Scripture focus is from Romans 12:1 The Message

"...Take your everyday ordinary life-your sleeping, eating, going to work, walking-around life- and place it before God as an offering."

Offer your life as an offering to God. Offer your life as a light to a dark world around you and GO!!!!

Pin It!

Wednesday, May 1

Three Ways to Show Respect to Your Husband Today

These are a few things I have been kicking around in my mind since re-reading the book of Love and Respect by Emerson Eggrich. As wives, it can be easy to disrespect our husbands. Why? Well, there are many components that play into our disrespect. 

First, we don't think that way toward our husbands. We think more in terms of love and romance. We pursue love more in our relationships than we do in showing respect. God created men to need respect. We aren't taught that as women. Even movies focus more about love than they ever do respect when it comes to men. Our society cuts men down in talk shows, advertisements and movies while promoting women as the better halves. But as followers of Christ, we must be careful that we too don't get sucked into the destructive cultural attitude against disrespecting men. 

Second, we lack practical knowledge of how we are to show respect to our husbands. This can be hard to grasp when we naturally want to show love. Learning how to practically show respect in your marriage can feel awkward because you are going against what you naturally want to do. 

Third, our hearts are covered up in the unconfessed sin of pride. Sin is the main obstacle that leads us to disrespect our husbands. Our very own prideful thoughts that "we are better" and "we know better" and we will not be some kind of "submissive doormat" are just a few of the things women can struggle with internally when it comes to learning how to respect their husbands. 

So here's a little test for you today. If you answer "yes" to any of these, you are showing disrespect to your husband and you aren't realizing it.

Today you can begin showing your husband respect by telling him you respect him. Tell him in a card. Tell him before you go to bed. But just tell him how much you respect all he does for you and the family.

1. Instead of rolling your eyes at something he says or does, look him straight in the eye when you disagree. Show him you are listening and value his opinion.

2. Encourage him by looking for something he has done "right" for you or the kids and thank him. Hold your tongue when you want to cut him down in front of other people or your kids in regards to his faults. Learn how to discuss both of your faults in private.

3. Don't verbally compare him to another husband who does all the "right" things for his wife.

4. Show him respect by not blaming him for every problem you have in your marriage. Marriage is two flawed imperfect people living in a fallen flawed world so there are always two sides to every story. 

Showing respect means you show your husband that he is needed in the marriage and family. That his opinion is highly valued. That you desire his influence in the marriage and home. That you have confidence in him.

Showing respect is hard work in your marriage. It doesn't come naturally.
I could go on, but today I pray that some wife is encouraged and challenged by today's post. 
Pin It!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...