Wednesday, August 26, 2009

"A Mom after God's own heart"

God has really been working on me lately. A few years ago I went through a study at church by Elizabeth George called "A Mom after God's own Heart" but i was going through a rough time and unfortunately didn't run towards God and really concentrate on the study, but instead ran away from him and didn't get much out of it. Then about 6 months after that I went through "A woman after God's own heart" with a lady from my church and I got more out of that. Lately I have been realizing that when I do quiet times I am doing it "just to get by" but not to really learn or change my life. I have been really convicted about my walk with God and if I am teaching my children at 100% to follow God themselves. I comforted myself in the things my husband and I are doing right. We do a bible time at dinner and another one before bed. My 5 and 3 year old are memorizing verses, joseph knows 4 and samuel is learning 2. We teach them to pray and turn to God in all situations. So i sit back sometimes and think "i'm doing ok....i'm doing better than some other moms I know". But God doesn't want us to just do enough to get by, he wants us to give him all of ourselves.

So along with me setting limits on our technology, I am re-doing the study A Mom after God's Own Heart. It was so refreshing today during my kids rest time (sam and jonathan nap, and joseph spends some time watching t.v or playing in his room) I sat down and read my daily devotional in my Women's devotional bible, then I read the first chapter in the book, and did part of the study guide for that chapter. It talked about mothers in the bible, and how their heart and what's most important to the mom will show through her actions and her children will pick up on it.

I need to make sure my walk with God is growing and thriving, so that I can really teach my kids how to have a walk that is growing and thriving.

Some key points I got out of the chapter today are:

"The role of godly parents is to make sure the hearts and minds of their children are saturated with the Word of God" pg 21

" From a godly home life and upbringing, a child can learn how to live a godly life in a sinful world." pg 18

" God works through faithful parents who, in spite of dark and difficult days, walk obediently with him." pg 17

And for my friends who are moms and going through rough times in their homes listen to this great message from the book, in reference to a story about Timothy.

"Do you need encouragement? Take these words to heart-" "Despite division within the home, Timothy's mother instilled in him a character of faithfulness that carried into adulthood... Don't hide your light at home. Our families are fertile fields for receiving gospel seeds. It is the most difficult land to work, but it yields the greatest harvests. Let your children ... know of your faith in Jesus."

One final note, she gives 5 things that you should do to start becoming a mom after God's own heart.... some of them i was already working on but some of them I needed to focus on. The stuff in paranthesees is from the book, then I paraphrase what it is we should do.

1. "Develop a template for your weeks"- what do you want to accomplish- are there bible times for you and your kids every day.

2. "Analyze your TV time"- not only limit how much TV your kids are watching but you yourself too.

3. "Choose a devotional book"- Get into the word and start feeding your spirit so you can feed your kids spiritual food.

4. "Memorize one verse"- We as moms needs to be memorizing scriptures right along with our kids.

5. "Pray for your heart"- Out of the heart, the mouth speaks. We need to give our hearts to God each and every morning.

My challenge is for the mom's out there and to myself- Make sure that you are getting spiritually fed so that we can truly make sure our children get good spiritual food. This is an area I have been weak in. I was making sure my kids did their quiet time, but didn't always make sure that I did mine. They need to see my love for Jesus, so that they will know how to love him and serve him as well.

Well that's all for now.... keep me in your prayers... as I try to grow closer in my walk with God...

Transitioning to a less technological life.... well.. sort of

My last blog was about how I feel that too much technology is stealing my time away, and so I wanted to tell you all how things are starting to change. It is a little bit harder than I thought, but so far so good. I am watching more how much my children are playing the wii, watching T.V. and on the computer. I am only on facebook about two or three times a day and just for about 15 minutes or so. It is difficult though when you take a step back and look at how much the T.V. and computer and video games can overwhelm your life.

One of my best friends chose to delete her facebook all together, and I am proud of her, she did what she needed to do. If my decrease in technology doesn't prove to be enough, I might do a "no screens" day, or a part of the day that is "no screens".

The hardest days are the ones where I am tired, or overwhelmed and it's so easy to turn on the T.V. or the computer or the WII.... but I have realized that these changes don't always happen overnight. Sometimes they are a day by day lesson. You learn each day to make a choice to seek God instead of facebook. To spend more time with your kids then having them watch T.V. for that hour. To enjoy being a family playing a game, or just spending time with each other instead of all facing the T.V. So even though I am not where I want to be today, I have faith that we will get there. It just takes making the touch decisions each day, and then seeing what a blessing it is when we make those small changes.

I'll keep you all updated!!!

Friday, August 21, 2009

What kind of home do I want????

Do i want a home like the duggars??

A home where the TV is never on, the computer is used rarely. A home where devotions are done as a family every day, and time with each other supercedes any other activity that they could be doing.

Do I want a home like some of my friends???

I've been thinking a lot lately about what kind of home I want to have. Not what kind of house I want, but what kind of home. I was watching the Duggars last night and I admire so much about them and most of all the parents. I saw their kids wrestling in the foyer, throwing a ball around, being normal kids. I also saw how they respected each other, helped out with chores, and one HUGE thing i noticed... they didn't spend time watching T.V., or playing computer games. Not that those things are all bad, but i'm wondering if families nowdays spend too much time enjoying technology instead of each other.

I've noticed a lot of days that I am sitting and logging onto facebook, but I haven't yet opened my bible up and done my quiet time. I find myself looking forward to playing a new computer game, but I haven't sat down and played with my kids yet that day. It's not just me, I know several people that are like this, and it just kind of got to me last night. Somewhere along the road of facebook, computer games, and 24/7 noggin channel, I've lost sight of why I am a stay at home mom. When i worked in a pre-school, those children didn't watch T.V. all day. They were playing, doing activities, etc... here I am a stay at home mom..... and I think sometimes I am dropping the ball. I only have so many years with my kids before they go to school. I've allowed technology to creep in and steal my time away. I'm going to go on a minor fast. I'm going to limit incredibly my time on the computer and my kids time watching T.V. and playing video games. I am going to increase play time and reading time with my kids. Try to regain some of the time that I have lost......

I'm not saying that letting your kids watch T.V is bad, or playing on the computer... etc... but for me .... I am just convicted that I am wasting these precious years on Farm Frenzy, the Wii and Noggin..... so as I am figuring out reasonable time limits, activities etc, I will keep you posted. And if there are parents out there who have any insight and advice, please pass it along my way!!!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Boys will be Boys.....

My husband and I decided to read through James Dobson's book called "Bringing Up Boys" together as our evening devotion together. Last night one particular paragraph stood out to me. I always knew that boys were rambuctious, and as Joseph was a toddler and doing things like jumping off the coffee table or climbing up whatever he could get his hands on I was thinking this was normal boy behavior. Some people told me otherwise.... and although I did discipline him and try to keep him for doing things that hurt himself, it just seemed in his nature to do these things. My son samuel at the age of 2 and 1/2 decided to color the living room (see earlier blogs!) Sometimes i wonder when my boys are bouncing off the walls, if this is normal.....Well check this out....

Pg 4 (excerpt from book)

" one of the scariest aspects of raising boys is their tendency to risk life and limb for no good reason. It begins very early. If a toddler can climb on it, he will jump off it. He careens out of control toward tables, tubs, pools, steps, trees and streets. He will eat anything but food and loves to play in the toilet. He makes "guns" out of cucumbers or toothbrushes and likes digging around in drawers, pill bottles, and mom's purse. And just hope he doesn't get his grubby little hands on a tube of lipstick. A boy harasses grumpy dogs and picks up kitties by their ears. His mom has to watch him every minute to keep him from killing himself. He loves to throw rocks, play with fire, and shatter glass. He also gets great pleasure out of irritating his brothers and sisters, his mother, his teachers, and other children... As he gets older, he is drawn to everything dangerous-skateboards, rock climbing, hang gliding, motorcycles and mountain bikes. At about sixteen he and his buddies begin driving around town like kamikaze pilots on sake. It's a wonder any of them survive. Not every boy is like this of course, but the majority of them are."

So far what I gather from the rest of the chapter is Boys WILL be Boys and that my job is to help them turn their God given energy, and risk taking and fearlessness and help them to use it for God. I can't stop them from being boys and i wouldn't want too... I am here to guide, instruct, and love. So if my house looks like a tornado hit it, if they come home and i can't make out who they are because of the dirt... if i have to keep telling them on the playground to quit trying to jump off the highest point of the jungle gym.... i'll be ok. I understand there are boys out there completley opposite of this, but it does make me feel good that when my boys have their moments of craziness, I know that for generations boys have been like this, and that we will all be ok. Looking forward to seeing what adventures are coming up!!! And as we are reading this book.... I will continue to share with you the things I am learning....

Sunday, August 16, 2009

A day in the life of a mom with 4 boys!

We were having some friends over today, and the boys room look like a tornado had hit it, so I decided to pick up before church this morning. The boys and mike had left because I also needed to nurse Jonathan and so I figured I would just drive us in a little bit. I was picking up things and looked down into one of the boys jeeps. Well there were some toys in there and a little pretend frog. I was thinking "man that looks like a real frog... and I don't remember seeing a toy like that before". We had my nephews over the night before so I thought they had left a toy over and so I decided to pick it up so I could return it. I touched it and then made the very startling discovery it was a REAL baby frog!!!!! I screamed several times very loudly, hyperventilated a little bit.... my heart was racing and then I decided that i needed to pull it together. I went and got an empty bin, and scooped him up and took him outside. I know this is the first of many surprises (as i'm told by other moms of boys), but I am hoping it never gets worse than this!!!

Friday, August 14, 2009

The simple things...

As summer is coming to an end we decided to do a family day with the older boys. I took jonathan to my moms and me, mike, michael, joseph and samuel all went to the pool. I always tell my children that sometimes when things don't go your way, their is a reason. Sometimes God just has better things in mind, so however minor this may be, to me yesterday it was an example to my children, something I have been trying to teach them.

We had planned on going to the pool in Washington, there is a great kiddy area, with lots of toys, a lazy river and 2 water slides, one for smaller children and one large one. As we approached the pool, got out of the van and was just getting ready to put on the sunscreen I spotted a family coming out and I just said "is the water cold?" and the little boy said "at first.... and they have the kiddy area closed". I was so upset, the whole reason for the venture that day was to show michael that area and the boys were so excited to play in it. I remember someone saying the union pool was cool, so i called them and found out they were open until 6. We all headed over and wow what an AWESOME time we had.

There was something for everyone. I even got to go down waterslides with michael and i haven't done that since i was 15! The best part is we only spent 10.00 for 5 of us to go swimming. We had sooo much fun and then we walked across the street and I had packed us a picnic dinner and we ate and then played at the park. It was so neat to just watch my children being children. Of course the boys were getting dirty and jumping off stuff but that's ok... i've accepted being a mom to 4 boys means lots of dirty clothes and although I haven't had my first trip to the ER due to an injury I'm sure it's not far away. I got to see Michael spending time with Joseph and the smiles beaming on their faces... it was just a GREAT day. On the way home as i was driving and everyone was asleep... i just felt so at peace. God has given me an incredible family and through that day showed me how the simple things can bring so much joy into a persons life. I'm kinda sad summer is coming to a close, but I am going to make sure I treasure the small things and thank God for them too.

Friday, August 7, 2009


Ok I was always taught that you thank God for everything, pray for everything, even the small things, he cares about it all. Well today two miracles (in my opinion) happened. One major, the other minor however major to my 5 year old.

Last night I went to walmart and I always just carry my billfold in instead of a purse, well today I got the kids loaded in the van to go and get some gas and mail a letter when I noticed my billfold was not in the van. A frantic search began, the van, the house, the van again, the house again. I decided to call wal-mart and they said they did not have a billfold in my name. I called my husband who prayed for me about it. I ran home one more time to check at home, and as i walked in i saw the phone light up so i ran over and answered. It was First Bank telling me someone from wal-mart had called them to tell me my billfold was there!!!! I thanked them about a hundered times.... ok maybe two or three and ran to the van to tell my kids that I knew where it was. I said "thank you God" about a million times... Joseph and Samuel asked why i was saying that and I got to tell them about how awesome God is and how he protected my billfold from being stolen and that he should be thanked for it. Got to walmart and they said a cart guy had found it, so thankfully it had been in no one else's hands!!

Then joseph was looking for one of his cars named Boost (from the cars movie) we looked all over for it and couldn't find it and he said "mommy maybe we should pray about it" so we did.... about an hour later a thought popped into my head to check under my bed... guess what.. there it was!!! That may seem like a minor thing, but to me it was just more evidence of what a great Father in Heaven we have and how he shows me not only in the big things, but in the small things too that he loves us so very much!! Joseph thanked God too for helping me find Boost!!

An addition

You know although my stepson Michael isn't my biological child, I have known him since he was 3 and 1/2 (2001) and have watched him grow into a handsome loving young man.I love him as one of my own children, and it's amazing how much he has grown and how God has blessed my life through him in many ways. Here are some photos of he and I throughout the years....

Growing Up

In the past couple of months I have seen my boys grow and change so much. My firstborn Joseph turned 5, my secondborn Samuel turned 3, got potty trained this year, and my newest little boy Jonathan has changed sooo much in the 4 months of his life so far. It's sad, it's exciting, it's hard to watch them grow, but yet extremely rewarding to watch them as they grow. I love listening to Joseph as he has been memorizing scripture lately. I love hearing Samuel as he is learning new things, and Jonathan it's amazing that each new day it seems like he is learning something new. I love the song by Plumb called In my Arms.... here are the lyrics and today.... i'm just thankful that God chose to let me protect them for a while... but know ultimately we are all under his protection.. our heavenly father...

I'm going to steal an idea from a fellow blogging friend and post pictures of my kids at various stages of life.... but as you read and listen to the words of the song... it's just heartwarming!

Here is the youtube link to the video if you want to hear it....

In my arms

Your baby blues
So full of wonder
Your Curly Que’s
Your contagious smile
And as I watch
You start to grow up
All I can do is hold you tight

Clouds will rage in
Storms will race in
But you will be safe in my arms
Rains will pour down
Waves will crash all around
But you will be safe in my arms

Story books
Are full of fairy-tales
Of kings and queens
And the bluest skies
My heart is torn just in knowing
You’ll someday see
The truth for lies

Clouds will rage in
Storms will race in
But you will be safe in my arms
Rains will pour down
Waves will crash all around
But you will be safe in my arms

Castles they might crumble
Dreams may not come true
Cause you are never all alone
Cause I will always
Always love you

Clouds will rage in
Storms will race in
But you will be safe in my arms
Rains will pour down
Waves will crash all around
But you will be safe in my arms

In my arms
In my arms