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Growing in My Role as a Mother – Surrender

Karis turned 7 months old yesterday and definitely has such a sweet personality! She loves people! Yesterday, while I was nursing her upstairs, the door bell rings. As soon as she heard other voices downstairs, she sprang off and started looking curiously around. She knew someone was here other than her mommy and daddy. From then on she was so distracted. You can just assume we didn’t get a good feeding in that time. It was hopeless! I put my nursing cover on and everything, but to no avail!

She also began sitting up on her own this week. It is so precious to see her learn how to balance herself. We have had a few minor accidents with her falling over, but she seems to be brave enough to handle the pain at this stage of the game.

She joined us at the table as well. Her high chair attaches to one of the table chairs, so she is at the same level as Daddy and I. Boy does she enjoy it! Bananas have been her first food and she is very petite and modest in her eating habits. No wide open mouth here, but she still daintily enjoys it. I tried adding squash, but she wasn’t too interested in that. Alas! We’ll stick to the banana for now.

God really has done a good work in me as of late. I am so thankful for this long process, 6 months in fact, of pruning me in regards to my overly passionate desire to have my baby on a perfect schedule. Being inclined to be more organized in my giftings, this has been a significant struggle for me. I have been frustrated, stressed, tearful and overwhelmed by my little one because she wouldn’t adjust to fitting into my schedule and when I wished for her to take a nap and for how long she would rest. I wasn’t too strick about it, but I wanted consistency!!!!! I wanted it too much. The perfect schedule for eating and naps was non-existent or only lasting a few days before it was thrown through a loop again.

I have come to realize that this approach was not strengthening my relationship with my girl, nor was I loving and meeting her needs the way I should. Thank God for His sustaining grace!

Flexibility is not my forte. God has been teaching me to let it go, lay down my desires at His feet, don’t worry about her naps, giving it up! She’ll take a nap when she needs it. If she wakes up earlier than I hoped, than she’ll probably take a longer nap later. Maybe I struggled with the belief that if I carried her in the front pack for her nap, she would get spoiled and never take a nap in her bed. I was believing a lie.

She is my daughter and my priority! She needs my nurturing love and affection. I may not have my hands in as many things as before, but at least I am not missing out on putting my baby before myself. It’s all a part of serving the Master by serving my child!

So I have come from being consumed with the scheduling approach to being more flexible and allowing the Lord to reign in our home. Some of those scheduling books put way to much pressure on the mommy that it has to be done a certain way or else. Praise God for freedom in Christ! I am so much more at peace and joyful now. It’s funny too…as soon as I started letting go, things started going more smoothly. It is amazing how much better we are both doing now than this whole last month. It allows my home to be more of a haven for my husband too since I am removing that gloomy and depressed attitude! Praise God!

There is so much more peace where God reigns and not me!

Is there an area of your life that you need to surrender to the Lord today?

Isn’t she a cutie? I guess I am a little biased. I think she is getting my curly hair! ;)

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Resources for the Holidays

Check out this great site for lots of creative ideas for celebrating the holidays. There are resources for purposeful holiday ideas that can be practiced throughout the year. I am bookmarking some of these ideas in a “traditions” folder so I can look back at them in years to come as my children (Lord willing!) grow older. Really enjoy this resource!

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Self-Denial in Motherhood

Lately, I have been going through a very challenging season with my little one. It seems my milk production has gone down significantly in the evening so as not to provide her with enough to make it through the night. I have had nights of waking up at 1 pm, 4 pm…etc. Some evenings it has taken over two hours to get her to bed. What a difficult feeling it is to not be able to supply her hunger needs. I won’t go into all the details…but I will tell you this.

I have learned that God’s mercies are new every morning and for every little trial I must face in motherhood. I have learned that motherhood is the tool through which God is pruning and refining my character during this season of my life. Why am I so quick to get frustrated and worked up when my baby does not comply with my schedule? Why do I focus on the problems instead of enjoying each moment to treasure and nurture my baby and meet her need? Why am I so quick to doubt God’s care and love for me? I so quickly analyze why in the world would she not go down at this time or with every little problem in her schedule, I want to figure out the reason why! I have been questioning God in this manner.

The hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world. ~William Ross Wallace

Nurturing and caring for my little one is my second most important priority beyond serving my husband; therefore, I must not lose sight that with each day she grows older and my time invested today in her life with impact the tomorrow.

The Lord has changed my heart. He revealed to me my sin over this past week as I grew more and more frustrated with Karis and her inability of going to sleep when I wanted her to. I have gotten angry, tearful, frustrated. I realized I was only living according to my desire and missing out on the investment I could be making in my daughter’s life. He revealed my need for a heart and priority shift. My desire grew as I started to pray for a love to nurture her even in the midst of these trying times…when I am losing sleep over it.

Instead of evaluating every possible reason for this mishap, I need to change my focus to treasuring those times of holding her close and rocking her. I need to re-evaluate my priorities and realign them according to God’s word. This is God’s perfect design for me at this time and season in my life.

How often do I lose sight of the moment and yearn for the future? I think…it will be so much easier when she is older…when teething is past, etc. Each season will have its own trials; I must not lose sight of rejoicing and delighting in the moment! Each day with my little girl is a presence gift! I must focus again with a spirit of thankfulness!

No more pity parties for me!

Psalm 121: I will lift up my eyes to the hills, from where does my help come from?

“Precious Moments” at

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Purposeful Christmas Resources

Here is the start of ideas and resources for your purposeful holiday preparations (as I talked about here)!

This is an excellent site for learning some thoughts on different meanings of Christmas traditions and symbols that are displayed around us. I learned alot as I read through this. Consider how you might incorporate more purpose into your holiday symbols by learning the history behind it all. Should we not put more thought into what the world sees in how we celebrate and decorate for the holidays? One idea would be to frame notes around each decoration with its symbolism and meaning.

One such example is the use of bells in your holiday decorations. Here is what they said:

Bells both call us to worship (church bells) and remind us of the joyous angelic announcement of Christ’s birth to the lowly shepherds.The golden color of ones often seen is a Kingly one and reminds us of our Lord and Savior.

More resources and ideas to come….

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Blessing Our Husbands through Prayer

How else can we effectively seek to serve and bless our husbands if we are not first on our knees interceding on their behalf? “The Power of A Praying Wife” by Stormie Omartian has completely changed my perspective on this important calling for us as wives.

Throughout this book, Stormie gives 31 different focus prayer points to cover each day of the month. Such topics include praying for his: vision, health, protection against temptation, integrity, work, relationship with the Lord, role as husband, father, etc. For each topic she gives a detailed prayer to follow and verses to expand your prayers.

I am also planning on purchasing her prayer cards that are a companion to this book. They list the prayers out so you can post them around the house, or in your Bible, purse, car, etc. as reminders to lift your hubby up before the Lord.

Since beginning the discipline of praying daily for my husband, I have seen the Lord work in some unique ways. One simple example was my burden for my husband to be able to pursue getting physical exercise on a regular basis, as I was concerned for his health. Now as Stormie emphasizes the goal is not to continually remind my husband of this desire and turn into a nagging contentious wife, but to first take this desire before the Lord in prayer. This is what I did and within a few days the desire was his. I was thanking the Lord! In other areas I have had to be a little more persistent, but God is doing amazing things in my husband’s life as a result.

Prayer is effective in keeping my focus on laying my relationship with my husband before the Lord first and foremost, especially in the midst of conflict. I want my husband to be a mighty man of God! Where nagging doesn’t work…prayer is powerful! This is one of the best ways I can love and serve my family.

Prayer is a powerful tool! Praise God for the ability to enter into His courts freely by His grace and lay our burdens at His feet. He hears our cries and answers them in His perfect timing.

Blessings upon you as your pursue this high calling!

Next Friday Blessing Corner: The importance of thank you notes!

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Treasuring God in our Traditions

Treasuring God in our Traditions by Noel Piper is an excellent resource to refer to in planning and preparing for your holiday celebrations and not only that but also the meaning and purpose of it all. Why do we have traditions? Noel Piper believes that by our traditions we can help the next generation treasure God, and at the same time deepen our love for him. Only God can give our children a taste for his sweetness. He uses God-centered traditions and Bible-saturated family patterns and grace-laden heirlooms.

She talks about the importance of having every-day traditions such as family devotions together, worshiping Christ together, praying together over your meals, etc. Secondly, she dives into the “especially” traditions, that of the birthdays, weddings, and planning of the holiday traditions.

“The things we do regularly that help us in our deepest being to know and love and want God, the things that help our lives to be infiltrated with God–those things are tradition. And then if there are children in our lives, pass these God-focused activities to the next generation–that’s what tradition is for a Christian.”

Deuteronomy 11:19 says, “You shall teach [God's word] to your children, talking of them when you are sitting in your house, and when you are walking by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.”

God is the reason we have anything to celebrate. He is the ultimate source of any of our celebrations. As we read in James 1:17, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.”

How will we seek to make Christ our treasure this holiday season? How will we strive to teach God’s word to the next generation through our traditions? How can we be purposeful during this busy and often overwhelming time of year? What are our children and the world around us seeing as the center most focus in our homes? Do others see why we celebrate?

May this time be a reflection of what our lives are–gratitude for the promises that were fulfilled when God gave us the gift of his Son and anticipation of and preparation for Christ’s coming again. ~ N. Piper

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