Simple Healthy Summer Meals

Photo Credit: Kirti Poddar

Note from Lindsay: My heart is full this week as I process all the intense images and knowledge I gained this past week in the Philippines. My body is also taking its precious time to adapt to the time change. Sleep has been avoiding me. I’m just trying to take it easy and pray for the Lord’s grace to just focus on my priorities this week. Going to launch right into our June theme where we will be sharing about cultivating simplicity and intentionality in the kitchen. Join us!

Post by Contributing Writer, Michele

Summer is usually a time of impromptu gatherings with friends, overnight visitors, and busy children’s activities in our family. On those hot summer days, standing in front of the oven is the last place I want to be, but everyone still needs to be fed.

To keep from resorting to ice cream for dinner (most of the time), I love having some frugal, simple-prep meals/ingredients on hand, using a combination of “once-a-month” meal preparations, a slow-cooker, and fresh produce.

Beans & Grains

Cook up a big batch of beans. You can put them in the slow cooker, if you just can’t bear to turn on the stove, and put it in your garage or shady porch to cook during the day.

I usually find black beans or chickpeas/garbanzo beans pretty versatile for summer meals. Store extras in freezer containers or baggies (stack bags flat in the freezer) for future meals. You can do the same with grains, such as millet or brown rice. (Cooked rice is perfect for making a fried rice to go along with a stir-fry!)

Some fun summer bean meals:

Photo Credit: roland

Blender Meals

On a hot day, a nutrient-rich smoothie can be a welcome side to a meal. You can make a Green Smoothie or a Fruit Smoothie, adding in plenty of whole milk yogurt or kefir. A chilled, blended soup can be refreshing on a hot evening, such as:


When talking with fellow “real food” blogger friends last fall, most of us mentioned the favorite “busy day meal” trio of Popcorn, Smoothies, and Omelets (toss in some garden veggies!). Stuffed Deviled Eggs, Omelets, or even a “breakfast for dinner” of scrambled eggs & soaked waffles are simple, nourishing meals that won’t heat up the kitchen.

Photo Credit: sporkist

Batch Grilling

Not just for burgers; use the barbecue grill, and cook up a whole chicken, big batch of meats, or veggies while the coals are still hot! Leftover cold grilled chicken or beef is perfect for summer salads (such as Southwest Chicken Salad) or sandwiches. Grilled veggies or sausages are delicious in an omelet or soups, as well as Grilled Veggie Sandwiches.

Photo Credit: coanri

Fresh Produce

You may be gleaning produce items from your garden on an as-needed basis (such as lettuce, tomatoes, or carrots). But if you have a veggie drawer or fruit basket full, prep them into salads or veggie trays for quick snacks or appetizers (perfect for those drop-in guests!).

Use a melon baller to make quick work of a large melon, and toss together a fruit salad. A bowl of a nourishing homemade creamy dip is a great option to have on hand, too, with your veggie trays.

Cold salads can be made into meals, too! Stir in some shrimp or canned salmon, and serve in a wrap or stuffed into a bell pepper for a fun picnic meal.

You don’t have to do all your prep-cooking on one day.

Just make extra when you do cook a meal, and put it in the freezer- alongside the Strawberry Ice Cream! What are your favorite summer meals?

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The Hands and Feet of the Gospel

Our Philippines experience comes to a close today. It is a bittersweet moment, for I have truly seen the love of Christ in action and don’t want to forget the beauty of this work. Since the age of sixteen, I have dreamed of coming to the Philippines after reading my first missionary account of a nineteen year old girl who served here. One door opened after graduation only to be quickly shut. And now, this week, that dream was fulfilled and I got to witness firsthand the dreams of others being fulfilled.

I have witnessed extreme poverty, simple faith, joyful worship and abundant laughter.

I have seen children given hope, the love of Jesus, and the ability to grow, flourish, and make a difference in their nation.

I have seen solid national churches partner together with the work of Compassion to bring the hands of Christ to their communities.

I have seen numerous volunteers within the church who tirelessly serve (the majority of which are unpaid) to serve for the benefit of these children. They are passionate for the well-being of these children and willingly give numerous hours per week to their care.

I have seen empowered young people flourish through their youth and into their adulthood who want to love Jesus and in turn pass on the gift to other children. Four beautiful girls that graduated from the sponsorship program and currently students in the Leadership Development Program who are on fire for the Lord partner together to sponsor another and volunteer in the program. It is the gift that keeps on giving.

I have heard the power of the gospel in the life of Maan:

I have seen families come to Christ as their children are helped through Compassion. Mothers, fathers, siblings.

I have experienced impoverished family’s warmly welcome us into their homes and the sharing of their lives.

I have seen Jesus as I’ve entered the homes of Maan…


Mary Rose…

and Florence and Rosa…

…all of which exhibited a glorious beauty, a peacefulness, a joy amidst their obvious poverty.

I have seen Jesus as I have prayed over these families and have received the blessing of these children’s prayers.

I have seen Jesus as I have danced, played games, sang, and worshiped alongside these precious people.These children are not removed from their poverty situation, but rather given a fresh perspective. They are given the tools to be instruments for change and transformation within their community. Ultimately, it is all Jesus!

I am blessed that this child in my womb was able to come along and be blessed by so many hands.

There is no doubt in my heart that this is a good work. The eternal difference made by sending our resources on ahead to our eternal home by loving on little children. It’s beautiful. The transforming affect of the gospel is taking place through the ministry of Compassion and the power of Jesus’ love.

And to top it all off…I had a orangutan pet my belly as if she knew there was baby there in the most unique third world zoo experience. Yes, I will agree that dressing up a monkey is just not humane…but it was sure funny!

My life is changed. Why? Because I want to make a difference. I want my life to count for something. I want to be a blessing to the nations with my time, money, and resources. I don’t want to waste this precious life that I have been given. I have been entrusted with a gift – the ability to love and be loved. I want to live simply in order that I might give generously.

I will go home tomorrow and look forward to sharing with my own four year old daughter about the precious journey we are embarking on in sponsoring Angel. We will commit to praying for her, loving her, and cheering her own, Lord willing, throughout the duration of her experience in the sponsorship program. I pray for the complete 16 years of her time in the program! She will be our adopted daughter. She will be a part of our family. She will grow up with my daughter. My daughter will have a tangible way to pass on the gift of God’s grace to a child in need even when we are world’s apart.

I will go home tomorrow empowered with fresh vision to pursue our family mission of living simply in order to give generously. I want to add more children to our international family!

Compassion is just one way to make a difference. It does not have to be limited to this. But may we all take a step forward today in going forth in Jesus’ name to the nations.

Now that you know…what will you do?

As much as you’ve done to the least of these…you’ve done it unto me. (Matthew 25:40)

Live simply in order that others might simply live.

Only one life, twill soon be past. Only what’s done for Christ will last.

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The Power of a Letter

Who would imagine the power of a written letter? When I was preparing to move a few months back, I remember digging out my memory box. I uncovered all the letters from my childhood received from my father, mother, and friends. They were so special to me. I had stored them all in a manila folder for years. I had kept these cards for a reason. Why? Here is a glimpse into their contents:

“I’m so proud of you.”
“I love to see how you are growing in virtue.”
“Thank you for being so reliable. We count on you. You are a huge help to our family.”

Such sweet encouragement that I am so loved. They inspire me to this day.

On Day 4 in the Philippines, Mrya sits across from us at the lunch table, a sweet young lady of 19, a member of the Leadership Development Program of Compassion International, and shares about her greatest struggle:

“My struggle is that my sponsor is not replying on my letters. It’s really hard. I want to know them more and more. I want to share our journey and what happens in our lives.”

Her face aches with longing. She wants to know about her sponsored family. She wants to hear about their lives, their dreams, their home, their family. Myra graduated from the Child Sponsorship Program and was selected to be in the Leadership Development Program, which is in an aggressive, advanced academic, and leadership training course. She has overcome incredible odds and needs the support and encouragement to thrive in this challenging stage.

Out of 57,000 sponsored children in the Philippines, only 7,000 receive a letter from their sponsor in a month’s time.

Meann (pictured above), on the other hand, had a satchel full of letters and photos and she beamed from ear to ear as she displayed them to us. Each one she had treasured and kept secure in her memory box to review for years to come. She proudly told us about each of her past sponsors and identified them by name.

The financial aspect of sponsorship is obviously essential, but the written letter goes beyond the physical and offers that emotional affirmation that encourages a child to persevere, to dream, to press on towards completing their goals, to know they are loved by you and by the truly Important One, King Jesus.

A letter offers hope, encouragement, affirmation, spiritual inspiration, and friendship. All of which are instrumental to the holistic healthy development of a child.

A study in Ethiopia revealed an improvement academically of 20-30% growth from children who received just two letters a year over those who received none.

How long does it take to write a letter? In our day and age of technology, we have lost touch with the beauty of the written word.

Verbal affirmation is valuable, but the written word is a keepsake. It is something that can be reviewed again and again. When they are discouraged they can look back upon your words to lift them up again. When they are scared they can see that you are praying for them and they are loved from afar.

What Can You Do?

If you sponsor a child through Compassion, I want to thank you for your commitment to this child. It does make a world of difference as we have witnessed first hand. But would you stop and take a moment today and write your child a letter? Include your children in the process. Let them write a letter. Let them experience the impact of corresponding with a child in a foreign country. What a sweet way to expand your child’s worldview, culture, geography and heart for others.

It only requires a piece of paper, pen, a stamp, envelope, and thirty minutes of your time. Include verses, tell about your family, ask about their life, cheer them on. Compassion even makes it easier for those who prefer email. You can write online and it will be forwarded on to your child.

If you don’t sponsor a child, may I encourage you to do so today. Start building a relationship that could impact a child for a lifetime. Or consider the opportunity of being a child correspondent. You can sign up to be a friend to a child around the world.

Lastly, who might appreciate a written card or note of encouragement in your life right now?

Take a moment and write a note and drop it in the mail. Write a gift of grace to another. You never know the long term impact your encouraging words can have. Write to your children. Even if they are too young to read. These will be such a gift to your children when they are grown and gone.

“But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called “Today,” so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.” Hebrews 13:3

For further help on writing letters to your sponsored child, visit the FAQ page. You can write online and/or print stationary from the Compassion website.

Hear more stories of our adventures in the Philippines on the Compassion Bloggers site. You don’t want to miss it!

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The Beauty of Third World Hospitality

Day 3 in the Philippines sees us riding upon a pedicab being escorted down the narrow streets of a community in a large wet marshland with ponds of water scattered about on either side. It is an area succumb to frequent flooding in the rainy season. Houses all around lie a foot deep in dirty slim water with tires and strips of wood to provide stepping stones into their homes. Clothes hang to dry over the water by thin strands of rope.

In one spot the entire road is covered with water with no passage through beyond a cement sledge border running the length of the road upon which people hobble along to reach their homes. Fishing (called milk fish) is the livelihood of the community along with pedicabs escorting people from here to there.

We come to a small wooden tin roofed house built upon two foot high stilts. Underneath lays a sludge of wet marsh. Outside their door is a pile of paper trash of receipts from which the children sort and recycle for supplementary income.

Upon entering the approximately 12 foot by 15 foot home, divided into three small rooms, we are warmly greeted by a vibrant mother and her three young children. There is no furniture besides a bunk bed, dresser and kitchen counter with one office chair for seating.

The father works insane hours as a driver in a distant village. He leaves at 4 o’clock in the early hours of the morning and often does not return till midnight or 1 am the next day. Yet they express thanks to have the extended family and help of neighbors living next door. They share community meals together.

Their home flooded in October of 2009 when a three foot high wave of water filled their home. They were completely stranded and slept upon the upper level of the dilapidated bunk-beds that the children slept upon. They simply had to wait it out. But in their struggle the expression on their faces is one of thankfulness. “We were blessed because we had milk fish swimming through out home that we were able to catch and eat.”

Mary Rose is the oldest daughter at fourteen who thrilled us with her love for singing earlier in the day. Her love for Jesus was clearly displayed on her countenance. She entered the Compassion Child Sponsorship program at age five and testifies of the impact it has made upon her life. She heard about Jesus and chose to give her life to Him. She can now dream. Medals and certificates cover the wall displaying the family pride in their daughter for her success in school and church. She dreams of becoming a teacher and loving on children in the way she was loved. She loves the exuberance of children and wants to help them. Even at the tender age of fourteen, she is already serving by teaching other children in her community through volunteer teaching in the Compassion program. She is a beautiful young lady rescued from her poverty and given an opportunity for a future, and she wants to pass on the gift she has received.

Throughout the duration of telling us their story, the smiles never leave their faces. They are so beautifully content. They thank us incessantly for coming to their home. They spent the day talking among their neighbors of how greatly they anticipated our arrival.

Yesterday, we visited another amazing family of 15 (extended family all living under one roof) cramped into a 250 square foot home. When we asked our host what she had been doing that day, she excited expressed, “Nothing really. We were just waiting for you to come. We were so excited for you to come.”

This family could offer us no more than a simple wood floor or old office chair to sit upon and yet they gave it so freely. They have nothing to give beyond their love and welcoming smiles. How can I ever again be intimidated by the thought of extending hospitality to others in my own home when I see such joyful love extended amidst such poverty? We reside in a culture with such abundance and yet we shrink back at the thought of the uncomfortable nature of opening our homes and lives to others. Here are families that greatly anticipate our arrival and thank us repeatedly for visiting their homes while I stand as one who stresses over the fear and details of welcoming in another.

Today I was loved upon in a way that I will never soon forget. Even in their poverty, they freely gave us their love. Isn’t that what true hospitality is all about? The simple extension of our hearts and hands to show the love of Christ to others? We might not have huge resources to give, and yet we all have a home, a heart, and hands to extent to others. Eight of us sat crowded around their floor but no one gave it second thought.

We have been given so many gifts. How can we pass on what we have without thought to size or substance?

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I Just Want My Child to Be Healthy

“I just want my child to be healthy,” is a most frequent prayer request among the mothers and families we have visited with here in the Philippines. With 24,000 babies under the age of 5 dying each year around the world from common childhood diseases, most of which are preventable in our day and age…this is reality. With the enormous cost of health care in these developing countries, the burden is enormous. Tuberculosis affects families all over the Philippines…and with large extended families living under a tin roof it spreads in rapid succession from adult to child.

Before us stand nearly 20 different young mothers, on Day 2 in the Philippines, with a wealth of small children that come weekly to participate in the Child Survival Program of Compassion International where mothers with children in utero to age 3-5 years are given the skills necessary to develop and thrive in a poverty stricken nation. They ran up to us, greeting us with such exuberance, and wrapped cute bracelets around our wrists. What an overwhelming blessing to be so warmly welcomed despite the fact that we are foreigners. We who intended on being a blessing are instead recipients of Jesus’ love that is not limited by color or nationality.

How frequently I take for granted the simple knowledge we have as mothers into the importance of basic child development and health. We have such easy access to health care that my children’s health is rarely a concern. We have such enormous access to hands on materials to help equip our children, even the simple things of crayons and paper to allow them to develop their creative instincts. These simple blessings are foreign to these women before they enter this program.

These precious mothers have no knowledge as to the impact of lovingly touching and holding their babies, to the hands on experience of developing hand and eye coordination through drawing and other creative play to basic health knowledge of nutrition. I was dumbfounded to hear that in some countries, mothers will not even name their babies for the first year, nor look them in the eye, or really love on them in the likely event that they will die within that time period. Fear of health is so consuming to them and understandably so.

At this program we witnessed mothers learning basic health and nutrition skills. They were given hands on instruction on how to prepare a healthy meal and the gift of the raw materials to take home to prepare it for their family.  Homemade clay was assembled to give them opportunity to sit down and play with their little children in their basic development. Mothers are taught how to start income generating skills of opening their own little storefront at the entrance of their homes to sell snacks, small sanitary supplies, and other cheap items. Through this means they can help support their families. They also have access to health services with regular child check-ups and vaccinations.

They have the same basic needs as our own family. They love their children and desire the best for them. Our children need love, nurturing, health, and developmental play experiences and most importantly the love of God in just the same manner.  These mothers long for support and community. They need fellow mothers to come alongside them and encourage them in their role. They desire companions in the journey. And here in this place they are joining forces in becoming more empowered and knowledgeable mothers in nurturing their children.

One mother of four young children shared how their family was struggling to survive financially when her young infant son came down with pneumonia. With tears filling her eyes she shared how Compassion came alongside her and offered her medication. Through their involvement in her life, she began attending Bible studies that they offered. Her husband was very anger at first but as he witnessed the transforming changes taking place in her life, he wanted it to. They both came to a saving knowledge in Christ Jesus. All from simply extending a hand in offering a little health care for a child.

The children we observed were thriving. They were healthy and happy. They snuggled with their mommies. They delighted in doodling and coloring. Thankfulness abounds on these mothers faces. Just to have a little support, to be a recipient of love extended, to be taught and have the ability to learn. They are simple gifts. Simple needs. And we can be the hands and feet to meet them. What a joy to observe the national church mobilized to meet these needs in their community.

Don’t miss out on hearing the stories of all the Compassion bloggers here. Do you desire the opportunity to be the hands and feet? Sponsor a child for just $38 per month or help rescue a mother and child with a $20 monthly gift.

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Achy Bones & Beautiful Faces

My body aches from lack of sleep in relation to jet lag, swollen pregnant feet from the heat and frequent standing, and my physical body is screaming at me, “what were you thinking traveling overseas at 30 weeks pregnant? Didn’t you realize you wouldn’t have as much energy with your 3rd pregnancy as you had with your previous ones?” I lay sprawled out on the sidewalk awaiting our taxi ride to our hotel. I was seriously starting to question my intelligence. 15+ hours in flight had certainly taken its toll. Every time we landed I had this crazy sensation that I was going into labor. Such strange tightening, spasms, and dizziness.

I questioned…“why am I here?” It was at this moment that I looked up.

All around me I saw faces. Petite, oval, dark, beautiful faces. Beautiful unique faces. Each one fashioned with such intricateness. Each one filled with such yearning. I am shocked to see the huge smiles and welcomes etched across them. I am filled with such a love for these precious people. God loves each and every one of them. He has a plan for their lives and wants me to love them too. I see the longing. I see the hunger. The mad rush of bodies outside the airport communicates the rush and speed of life. Nothing slows down. It rapidly speeds on towards death and separation from God apart from the manifold grace of God. These faces need Jesus.

Her tears are etched across my soul. A poor Grandma, retired and aged without possible income beyond the $28 monthly pension her husband receives. Here she sits before me struggling to raise their only grandchild. Angel is an adorable girl of four with pigtails in her hair and a cute little ballerina skirt around her waist. A precious life that was abandoned at 2 months old by her mother on the doorstep of her Grandparents home. She hides her face in her Grandma’s skirt as we greet her. She is shy, reserved, and quiet and we hardly heard a peep out of her throughout our time together. But slowly…the smiles started to imerge. Playing with sand, going down a slide, savoring a small cup of strawberry ice cream, and enjoying her favorite chicken and gravy. Here she was…four years old. Just like my own precious daughter. Angel loves playing house, hide-and-seek, and babies. Sounds like my own Karis.

Grandma Ida keeps calling us Angel’s new Papa and Mama. At first I am turned off by her declarations of us…but then I begin to see more clearly. This little girl needs lots of love and nurturing. And though we may be thousands of miles away, we have adopted her in some way today. She has stolen a place in our hearts. We have the awesome opportunity to pray for her by name. We can express God’s love for her again and again in our letters. Letters that have power to communicate love, affirmation, and a friendship across the miles. We learned that such letters can improve their educational wellbeing as well as their over overall development. Grandma Ida’s eyes filled with tears as we prayed over them in our parting and partnered with Grandma in the loving nurturing of Angel.

The Lord has graciously given us the opportunity to invest in her life. To provide the means for giving her the holistic services in her emotional, physical, economical and spiritual well-being in order that one day, Lord willing, she might become a responsible and fulfilled Christian adult. That falls right in line with our desires for our own children. Why not adopt her as our own? This is why Compassion International exists. I look forward to exploring how Compassion fulfills that in 56,000 children here in the Philippines as the  week continues.

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Off to the Philippines!

My husband and I depart this morning for the Philippines to participate in the Compassion Bloggers team. I am thrilled to see and hear all that God has in store for us! I will be blogging daily here this next week (May 29-June 3) about all our adventures, so stay tuned!

I would appreciate your prayers for our safety, health (at 30 weeks pregnant!), and the ability to express all that God desires me to communicate with you! I want to see my vision for His mission expanded!

Join us in sponsoring a child from the Philippines! We get to meet our special little girl, Jerry (age 4), during our visit!

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Favorite Reads on Motherhood

I wanted to finish out our series this month on motherhood by sharing a few of my favorite resources on the topic. These are excellent books to help inspire you further!

Mission of Motherhood: Touching Your Child’s Heart for Eternity by Sally Clarkson – my all time favorite book on motherhood drawing our hearts to the beautiful purpose in it all of loving and guiding their little souls to know Christ. Gives such vision for your role as a woman and mother through Scripture with fresh inspiration for every aspect of life.

Ministry of Motherhood: Following Christ’s Example in Reaching the Hearts of Our Children by Sally Clarkson – I love the counsel in this book towards viewing our children as our disciples and learning from Jesus’ training methods. Powerful!

The Mom Walk: Keeping in Step with God’s Heart for Motherhood by Sally Clarkson – Making sure our hearts are in tune, focused, and in line with the purpose of God. Encouragement for the weary mother.

Don’t Make Me Count to Three by Ginger Plowman – Fresh courage and wisdom for disciplining while getting to the heart of the matter peacefully and with joy.

Loving the Little Years: Motherhood in the Trenches by Rachel Jankovic – Are your arms full with the challenges and joys of mothering little ones? Find sweet laughter and honest wisdom from this mother of 5 little ones under 5.

Mitten Strings for God: Reflections for Mothers in a Hurry by Katrina Kenison – A sweet reminder to slow down and enjoy the precious moments of life with lots of creative ideas towards investing fully in a holistic life.

A Mother’s Heart: A Look at Values, Vision, and Character of the Christian Mother by Jean Fleming – Encouragement to moms of all ages and backgrounds by showing women how to distinguish between their role and God’s role in raising children, explaining how to take a spiritual inventory of a child’s life, and discussing how to pray effectively for children.

Every Child Needs a Praying Mom by Fern Nichols – Learn the value and art of praying for your children.

Womanly Dominion: More Than a Gentle and Quiet Spirit by Mark Chanski – While this book is written about godly womanhood as a whole, it has a powerful chapter on motherhood. If you are seeking to understand God’s heart for women, this book is my top pick!

Feminine Appeal by Carolyn Mahaney – Carolyn addresses the various aspects of the Titus 2 woman and includes excellent discussion on women in their role in the home. Beautiful book!

Be strong in the Lord, dear sisters! Your role as mothers is beautiful in God’s sight!

For my recommended resources on natural pregnancy and birthing, visit here.

What are your favorite reads on the topic?

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Little Souls Entrusted to Our Care

God designed motherhood to be a deeply meaningful role. We mothers have the opportunity to influence eternity by building a spiritual legacy in the lives of our children. Through our teaching and influence, morality can be learned and modeled, love and kindness are taught and received, purpose and vision are ignited and passed on.“ – Sally Clarkson

I have two precious souls (with one more making his/her entrance soon) entrusted to my care.

Two little hearts tender to be formed and molded into a man and a woman of God.

Two sweet bodies to be loved and nurtured so they may in turn love others.

Two bodies to dance with and enjoy the beauty of life together.

Two tender minds to be taught the love of learning so they might be equipped to discern truth from error.

Two little mouths to be filled with nourishing food to sustain them and grow them healthy and strong for the Master’s use.

Four little hands to be trained to help, serve, and give gifts of grace to others.

Two little warriors to be equipped with truth so they might be sent out to cause damage on the Enemy’s camp.

Two little voices to sing together in uttering God’s praises for all eternity.

I am called today to pray for these precious gifts, to create life together with them, to offer a listening ear to the cares of their hearts, while always depending hourly upon the Lord for the grace to fulfill this task. To abandon perfection and strive for faithfulness. To be willing to confess my stumbles and short comings.

It will require frequent trips to the bathroom to address heart issues, wiping of many noses, rocking of sick children, many sleepless nights, repeating the same book numerous times, preparing endless meals for thankless children, and many more seemingly mundane tasks. But when I focus on the goal that they are precious eternal souls entrusted to my nurturing care to be brought up as warriors for my King, then I can persevere, as it all becomes worth it. I stand in a very powerful influential place, one that I want to take seriously.

And when I see their smiles, their sweet “I love you, Mommy,” I know this is the best thing I could be doing. When I embrace God’s purpose for me during this season of my life, there is fresh joy to go the distance. They are part of the treasure I am storing up in heaven. Each moment is precious. Each moment is a gift.

I was designed to be a life-giver and to impart life into every day.

Are you giving life today?

“The world may not applaud us for wiping running noses, driving in carpools, or talking with our teenager into the wee hours of the morning. And until they are trained, our children might not thank us either. But as we set aside our own selfish desires and glorify God by joyfully serving our children, we are pursuing true greatness according to the Bible. Let us do so with tenderness, affection, and with a smile!” – Carolyn Mahaney

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Motherhood: My Only Gems

“She came tonight as I sat alone, the girl I used to be…
And she gazed at me with her earnest eye and questioned reproachfully;

Have you forgotten the many plans and hopes that I had for you?
The career, the splendid fame, and all the wonderful things to do?
Where is the mansion of stately height with all of its gardens rare?
The silken robes that I dreamed for you and the jewels in your hair?

And as she spoke, I was very sad for I wanted her please with me…
This slender girl from the shadowy past the girl that I used to be
So gently rising, I took her hand, and guided her up the stair
Where peacefully sleeping, my babies lay innocent, sweet, and fair.

And I told her that these are my only gems, and precious they are to me;
That silken robe is my motherhood of costly simplicity.
And my mansion of stately height is love, and the only career I know
Is serving each day in these sheltered walls for the dear ones who come and go.

And as I spoke to my shadowy guest, she smiled through her tears at me.
And I saw that the woman that I am now, pleased the girl I used to be.

- Author Unknown
Quoted in Womanly Dominion by Mark Chanski

Republished from the archives…

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