Life Goals for Kids

Ever since I was a little girl, I dreamed of what it would be like to have a family.  I always said I wanted 3 kids: 2 boys and a girl.  Well, I have my 3 children and because they are all boys, I’m an official Boymom.  With a teenager, an 11 year old, and a 7 year old who thinks he is grown, I’m quite busy and quite exhausted most of the time.  I’m also far from being a perfect mom. That’s why I own books such as Triggers,  Am I Messing Up My Kids?, and Upside Down Prayers for Parents. Being the best mom I can be for my children is a top priority.

 

With that being said, my children get quite angry with me at times.  At my house, door slamming, stomping, loud voices, and low grumbling can frequently be heard. My kids are pretty well taken care of, but they don’t always get what they want.  In fact, my 7 year old hates that I always make him eat “ba-sketti.” I’m not the mom that allows my kids to do every single thing they want to do or purchase for them every single thing they think they can’t live without.  Their daddy and I work hard to provide for them, yet we make them work a little bit too.

 

But y’all, there’s more on my mind tonight than possessions.  I have a question for you: What are you pushing your children to?  What are you making their life goals?

 

Just last night, we attended an FFA banquet for my oldest son. I’ve always encouraged my children to get involved in many activities.  I want them to be well-rounded and knowledgeable.  I want them to be comfortable with all people. Therefore, my children are involved in both sports and academics, and they are involved in other activities at church. I love watching my boys on the ball field. I love hearing their names called for an academic team or robotics award.  I love seeing them excel in something they love.

 

Yet, I know there is more to life for them.  I want to push them to be successful in all they do, to be proud of themselves, to have a strong work ethic.  But the most important thing, the thing I want the most….I want them to be intimate with Jesus. I want them to surrender their lives to Him. I want them to live a life that brings honor and glory to God.

 

So, as I am training them up in the way they should go, I’m showing them the path to God.  I’m encouraging them to be active in church. I help them to see that we don’t HAVE to go to church. We GET to go to church. There’s a difference.  I’m working with God to be a mom that shows them His light and His love.

 

My kids love cool stuff.  iPhones. Xbox. Legos. Bicycles. Golf clubs. Books. Power Rangers.  I love playing Uno and Rummy and Monopoly with them. We love trips to Starbucks, Red Lobster, and Toys R Us.

 

But even more than stuff….my kids are growing in their love for Jesus.  They love church. They love worship music.  We have great conversations about faith, Christ, and salvation.  They beg for just one more devotional each night. And all of that is what makes this Mama’s heart happy.  My children love Jesus and want more of Him.

 

So, consider this…..What are you guiding your children to?  Is it that particular clique at school?  Is it that travel ball team?  Are you buying the latest gadgets and clothes so they will fit in? Are you making groups and gadgets idols?

or

Are you guiding them toward Christ?  Are you attending church as a family? Are you devoted to prayer time and bible study?  Do you talk about your faith and tell them how God is working in your life?

 

Consider the path you are leading your children on….is it a path to salvation and righteousness through Jesus Christ or is a path of idolatry and entitlement? Are you teaching them to store up treasures in heaven or store up treasures ruined by moths and rust?

 

And then consider this……

 

Are you concerned with your child’s eternity?

 

Are you pushing the issues of big bank accounts and fast cars or are you showing them the path to eternal salvation?

 

How would it feel knowing that at the end of life, we did nothing to help our children know Jesus?  We can’t save them, but we can introduce them to the One who can.

 

Mom and Dad, very few children will grow up to be pop stars and professional ball players. Very few children will grow up to have their names on billboards. However, all of us can have our names in the Book of Life, and that is where we should desire our children’s names be found.

 

I pray for us…..parents everywhere….parents of small children and parents of adult children…..I pray that we lead by example, that we strengthen and grow in our relationship with Christ, so our children will desire a relationship with Him as well.  I pray that we can be role models for them instead of letting the world model for them what they should become. I pray that our children would be men and women of faith who sets their hearts desire on the will of God instead of the will of the world.

Five Minute Friday: Sing

Y’all, I can’t carry a tune in a bucket. Not even if you put a lid on the bucket.  When I sing, my children say, “Mama, just stop.”  Yes, I’m that bad.

 

But I love to sing.

 

I love music. As a lover of words, music is amazing.  I love a good love song. I love a song that says everything I feel. Most of all, I love a song that praises God.

 

During my fourth pregnancy, I found out that our baby had stopped growing. After leaving the doctor’s office, my husband and I needed to stop by a clothing store, but I stayed in the car.  I sat in the car listening to our local Christian station.  Song after song came on about God’s goodness, about His love, grace, and mercy. And with tears streaming down my face, I sang to him.

 

As a Christian, I can sing a new song.  I don’t see the world the same as I once did.  And God doesn’t care about me singing off key. He only cares that my song comes from my heart.

 

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Where Do We Go From Here?

Easter Sunday is over.  At my house, the baskets are piled high with candy that will never be eaten. Our Sunday church clothes are piled in the clothes basket waiting to be washed.  Our bellies are still full from the Easter ham, sweet potato casserole, and macaroni and cheese. The milk chocolate bunny is staring right at me saying, “Do it! Eat the ears first.”

So, now what?

What do I do now with the message of Resurrection Sunday?

First, I can choose to be like the chief priests who tried to cover up the resurrection with lies and bribes, knowing it really happened, but choosing to cover it up due to fear. Yes, it can be a scary thing when Jesus comes in and wants to change your world.  We can deny Him to the end, but we are only hurting ourselves. I almost laugh thinking that these officials seemed to think that if they denied the resurrection then Jesus would be like, “Oh, well I’ll just quit now since they are bribing each other to deny me.”  Today, people do the same. They seem to think, “If I just deny Him, then it won’t matter. God is loving so, well, whatever. It doesn’t matter.”

Another thing we can choose to do is be like Thomas. Thomas chose to doubt.  I think one reason why was because he wasn’t as strong has the other disciples (purely my opinion) for the simple fact he wasn’t there when Jesus first appeared to His disciples behind locked doors.  I have no idea where Thomas was.  It doesn’t matter.  What matters is that to me, it seems like Thomas wasn’t fully following Jesus.  I’d compare him to those Easter and Christmas church  attendees.  Our names may or may not be on any particular church roster.  They know the ins and outs of the Christmas and Easter stories, but are never around to get more out of having a deeper, real,  life changing relationship with Christ. They doubt Christ more than other Christians because they haven’t spent time getting to know Him.  Like Thomas, they have to have that physical proof that Jesus is really who He says He is.

Or I can be Paul.  Paul, like me, walked in darkness.  We mocked other Christians.  We chose to deny Christ.  But one day, Christ revealed Himself to us.  We had a choice as to what we were going to do with that.  Well, you know Paul’s story.  Paul, whom was originally called Saul, gave up the life he knew and chose to live for Jesus.  He chose to walk in light and help others know the Jesus he knew.  He had his thorn in the flesh, something that he wanted to rid his life of, but he knew that God’s grace was sufficient.

When Jesus revealed Himself to me, I admit I was scared.  In fact, I walked away from Him and denied Him that first time.  He kept after me, calling to me, desiring me.  One day, I’d had enough of darkness, and I opened my heart to His light, His love….to Him.  Needless to say, it hasn’t been all mountaintop experiences since that day 11 years ago. However, whatever my thorn in the flesh has been, I have learned that God’s grace is sufficient for me.  Whether it was sick children, job changes, lack of finances to pay bills, deployment, miscarriage, or anger, God was there for me. He walked beside me when I needed it. He pushed me when I needed it. He held me in His everlasting arms when I needed it.  He has covered me in grace and mercy.  He has given me strength.

I’ll be the first to admit that being a Christian is scary.  Sometimes we are fearful, but I do have to remind myself that God hasn’t given me a spirit of fear. That comes from Satan.  When God calls me to do something, He will prepare me for it.  So many people choose not to serve Christ because of fear. If that’s the case, we will all be pew warmers and there would be no discipleship.

When we hear God calling, whether it is that first time that he is convicting of us of our sin or calling us to teach a class or go on a mission trip, we have to truly believe, and not doubt, that He will prepare us, He will guide us, He will be there with us.

As a Jesus lover, I choose to follow Him…..every single day.  Yes, there will be days I totally blow it. I will embarrass Him. I will not spend time with Him like I should.  But…..Here’s where He redeems me.  He will open His arms to me and say, “I know. I am not surprised by your imperfections. I know you better than you know yourself. After all, I did create you.  Regardless of your flaws, I love you and I can and will use you. You need only be still and trust Me.”

That’s what I choose. I choose to trust Him and live for Him every day, not just Sundays.  I am committed to Him.  And you know???? I owe it to Him.  I owe Him my praise, my worship, my thankfulness, my life.  It’s that whole John 3:16 thing….For God so loved the world that He gave his one and only son that whosoever believes in him shall not perish but have everlasting life.

And that is where I go from here….serving Christ. Living for Him. Devoting my life to Him. Where do you go from here?

Empty

Are you lacking?  Are you feeling less than?  Is there an emptiness within?

 

Sometimes, we make choices that tear us apart.  Sometimes, the world around us leaves us feeling empty inside.

 

A certain news story.

A comment from some one.

A passing thought.

 

Whatever the case may be we feel alone. We feel scared. We worry and fret.

 

Tomorrow morning is Easter.  I could focus on the emptiness of the tomb.  But I’d like to say this instead……

 

There will be those that enter a house of worship for the first time, for the first time in a long time, or who is even there regularly, yet they will have an emptiness in their hearts. A yearning in their souls for something more. No matter what it may be, no matter how they’ve tried to fill that emptiness with other things…..sex, drugs, money, food…..there is only One thing that can fill that emptiness……Jesus Christ.

 

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Thank you for joining me for my Saturday edition of Five Minute Friday. If you haven’t stopped by Kate’s for more responses, please do so. You won’t regret it.

 

I hope you and your family have a wonderful Easter weekend.  I pray that you will feel God’s love and peace and that you are able to experience His forgiveness so that you are made whole.

Seeking Submissions

Is there a special teacher in your life? A teacher that has encouraged you and loved you more than any other?  I am seeking submissions to post here on the blog for Teacher Appreciation week.

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Are you a teacher that has been touched by a student during your years in the classroom?  Have you been to the point you’ve wondered, “Is this worth it?” only to have a student prove to you that you are important and the hard work and tears are worth it? I would love to have your stories too.

 

If you have a special teacher that you would like to honor or if you would like to tell us how a student has touched your life, please submit the form below.

 

31 Days Ago

Thirty-one days ago, we opened the book Triggers: Exchanging Parents Angry Reactions for Gentle Biblical Responses.  We began a journey to get back to being the parents God created us to be.  So today, I have a question: Are you the same parent you were 31 days ago? It doesn’t matter to me if you are still on Chapter 6 or you finished the book in one week.  What matters is that God spoke to you through the words of the book, through the scriptures, and through the prayers.

new creation

For me, I feel I’ve been more gentle with my children. I’ve definitely listened to them more, trying to understand them.  Also, I’ve noticed that I’ve been more apt to listen to my students at school, to understand them as well.  Because of this inclination to stop and listen, my voice level has been lower, my words kinder.

I’ve also been making it a point to be present, really present with my boys.  When they’ve wanted to play, I’ve played. When they’ve wanted to talk, I’ve talked. When they’ve wanted to help, cuddle, or whatever, I’ve done my best to put them first.  I have to say, our home has been much more peaceful.

In the past week, we had an incident in our home where one brother was too rough with another brother.  Normally, I would have gone through the roof.  Jeff too. However, we handled the situation quite calmly, and it seems the natural consequences had quite an effect on our children.

Now, I am not saying I’ve become the perfect mother in 31 days.  Not quite.  God’s not done with me yet.  From experience, I know that I will lose my cool again, but I also know that God will pick me up.  I will ask forgiveness from my children. I will try again.

There is hope each and every day that I will be a more Christian mom than I was the day before.

tomorrow jealous

What about you, Friend?  How have you changed the last 31 days? How can I pray for you and your journey to become the Christian parent God has planned for you to be?

God Convicts, Not Condemns

There’s this voice. It nags me and drags me down.  It tells me I’m a failure, that I’ve ruined my kids.  This voice tells me there is no hope, that I’ll never change, that my children will resent me for the rest of their lives.  You know the voice.  It is the voice of Satan filling our minds with his lies.  He has a plan, a plan to discourage us….a plan to damage our homes…..a plan to pull us further from Christ.

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But there is another voice.  A still small voice that whispers, “Yes, you’ve messed up, but I will get you through this. Just lean on me.”

This voice encourages me, “Sweet child, I’m here. I’ll guide you through this.”

This voice lifts me up, “There is hope.  In Me, there is always hope.”

This voice declares, “There is a way. I am the way. Follow me, and I will strengthen you and your home.”

And that is the voice of God.

But the voice of truth tells me a different story
And the voice of truth says, “Do not be afraid!”
And the voice of truth says, “This is for My glory”
Out of all the voices calling out to me
I will choose to listen and believe the voice of truth

While Satan stands to condemn us for our sin, God our Father stands to convict us of our sin.  And in that conviction is a hope and path to redemption.

condemnation

Y’all, I could list for you all the times I’ve felt guilty of my anger. I could rewrite for you here my journal entries about my failure as a mother. But I won’t because guilt condemns us. Guilt traps us. Guilt does nothing for us.  But conviction!!!! Oh, conviction frees.

Every single one of you on this journey, you have been convicted of your sinful anger. That’s why you bought the book. That’s why you joined the Facebook group. That’s why you come here day after day to read my reflection.  Your conviction has told you, “God is for you! There’s hope and He is your hope.  He is your answer. Call on Him!”  And that’s what you’ve done. You’ve cried out to God and admitted your sinfulness to him and asked him to redeem you and restore the peace within your home.

And God our Refuge has met us right where we are.

By His Amazing Grace, The Voice of Truth has Redeemed us!

All my life I have been called unworthy
Named by the voice of my shame and regret
But when I hear You whisper, “Child lift up your head”
I remember, oh God, You’re not done with me yet

I am redeemed, You set me free
So I’ll shake off these heavy chains
Wipe away every stain, now I’m not who I used to be

There is hope for you sweet friend.

Restoration is coming to you and your family.

God is not done with you. He has a plan, yet he will not force himself on you.  Because our Lord loves us, he waits for us, longs for us, and then when we allow him, his will is fulfilled in us.

I don’t know what your specific trigger to sinful anger is.  I don’t know where you are on this journey. I do know that God’s conviction will lead you to righteous redemption.  Listen to him. Listen to his still small voice, and you will be changed.

One of the most amazing gifts God has given us is the gift of community.  Friend, I welcome you into my community. I am here for you.  Let me encourage you. Let me pray for you. Let’s not give up meeting together whether in real life or virtually.  Let us walk this motherhood journey together with our Lord and Savior.

I hesitate to say this is the end……This is the end of the book Triggers: Exchanging Parents Angry Reactions for Gentle Biblical Responses.  Yet, it is not the end of our journey together.  Let’s continue to pray for one another. Let’s continue to confide in one another.

For us, this is the beginning of redemption.

The Straw that Broke the Camel’s Back

I am finishing up this study of Triggers.  Baseball season has started and practices are in full swing until games start in mid April.  My house is a wreck. I couldn’t even find my white cami this morning to wear under my baseball mom shirt. My kids were a bit lazy in getting ready for school.  The cat bit me because he didn’t realize I actually fed him.  One of my students is bound and determined to get kicked out of my class because he will get to go “hang out” in the office and eavesdrop on everything going on. These are all normal everyday things that happen, yet they can cause my stress level to rise.  Let’s pile on top of that a list of bills that need to be paid, a birthday party to plan, lesson plans to do, a child who is involved in some drama, and a child who doesn’t quite feel well and no one can figure it out. Those things can continue to add to the stress.  Then let’s say, another child drops his cup of chocolate milk and it splatters all over the floor and walls.  What’s a mama going to do???? More than likely, I would lose my cool. The spilled milk would be the straw that broke the camel’s back, or in this case, the last bit of stress that pulled the anger trigger.

As moms, and maybe more specifically, as Christians, we have trusted Christ to save our souls.  We’ve turned to him and trusted him with our eternal destination.  Yet, each day, we hold on to the little bitty daily annoyances and obstacles we encounter and don’t hand them over to him.  We allow them to build and collect and add unnecessary pressure to our lives. And then when something minor happens, we SNAP.  We become angry.  We make our children literally cry over spilled milk.

And then we wonder where God was in all of the mess.  We ask him why he didn’t lighten our load.  However, we have to consider this….Did we take it all to him in prayer?

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I love the hymn What a Friend We Have in Jesus, and I think it is appropriate to insert some verses here….

What a Friend we have in Jesus,
  All our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry
  Everything to God in prayer!
O what peace we often forfeit,
  O what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry
  Everything to God in prayer!

O! What a peace we so very often forfeit! What needless pain we bear! And why???? Because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.  Yes,  we trust Him with our eternal salvation, but we don’t trust him to save us daily from our sins and griefs.

Have we trials and temptations?
  Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged,
  Take it to the Lord in prayer.
Can we find a friend so faithful
  Who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness,
  Take it to the Lord in prayer.

As the daily trials of life come at us, as we wallow in sorrow and weakness, we become discouraged. Yet, why do we not take it to the Lord in prayer?

Are we weak and heavy-laden,
  Cumbered with a load of care?
Precious Savior, still our refuge—
  Take it to the Lord in prayer;
Do thy friends despise, forsake thee?
  Take it to the Lord in prayer;
In His arms He’ll take and shield thee,
  Thou wilt find a solace there.

We are weak with burdens. We carry these daily burdens, but our Friend, our Refuge, our Precious Savior wants to wrap his arms around us and give us peace and rest.

Oh, dear friend, how much more sweet would our homes be if we stopped when we first felt discouraged, overwhelmed, frightened, worried, and stressed and knelt at the at the cross, leaving our burdens there?!? Sweet friend, we are not failures as mothers when we ask for Christ to lead us, guide us, comfort us, and strengthen us.  We are not failures as mothers when we cry out to God, “Father, I’ve sinned. I’ve hurt the hearts of my children because I am so stressed out.  Please God! Please restore me and my family.”

come to me

We need to ask ourselves what has changed our focus.  We need to figure out where our eyes are fixed.  Are we focused on the cross or are we focused on our problems?

I want you to reflect on these song lyrics for a moment…..

The things of earth are dimming
In the light of Your glory and grace
I’ll set my sights upon Heaven
I’m fixing my eyes on You

You’re a lion full of power who forgot how to roar
You’re an eagle full of beauty but you can’t seem to soar
Will you return to the garden where you were first made whole
Will you turn to the one who can liberate your soul

Bring your tired
Bring your shame
Bring your guilt
Bring your pain
Don’t you know that’s not your name
You will always be much more to me
Everyday I wrestle with the voices
That keep telling me I’m not right
But that’s alright
Cause I hear a voice and he calls me redeemed
When others say I’ll never be enough
And greater is the One living inside of me
Than he who is living in the world

Are your eyes fixed on Christ or your problems?

Are you bringing him your pain and your problems?

Are you ruling your home with a heart of tyrant because you have forgotten that God can and will carry your burdens and bring you peace?

When Caring for Those We Love Hurts Those We Love

I won’t pretend to know what it’s like to care for a terminally ill loved one. I won’t pretend to know what it’s like to care for a child with a severe illness or disability.  I won’t pretend to know why God chooses to provide earthly healing to some, while providing heavenly healing to others.

All I know is from my own experience, so I would like to tell you my experience with a sick child.

 

When my middle son was born, he was whisked away to NICU due to the amount of fluid in his lungs.  This was a terrifying moment for my husband. I was pretty much oblivious until later on when my husband returned to my room and told me what was going on.  The years to come would be difficult.  My son would have a terrible time with respiratory issues.  He suffers from severe allergies and asthma.  There were nights I got little to no sleep holding him and giving him breathing treatments. There were nights I wrapped his naked body in a blanket and sat under the carport in the coolness of the rain just so he could breathe.  There were nights I’d pray over him for God to heal his little lungs.  And all those nights made this mama exhausted in the days to follow.  I would lose my temper with my oldest son. I struggled taking care of my family in a loving way.

But God redeems and joy comes in the morning.

joyin themornig

I love the story of Lazarus (and did you know that I had a statue of Lazarus in my living room for a few months?).  But even more, I realize the important thing that happened has Martha approached Jesus.   We know how the story goes, Jesus was told that Lazarus was sick. He took his time getting there. Lazarus died.  When he arrived Martha, the same Martha that told Jesus to scold her sister Mary for not helping with preparations, told Jesus her brother would not have died if He’d been there.  But she also said this,  “But even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you” John 11:22.  In her grief, Martha confessed the power of God.

What an amazing testimony.

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Lazarus hanging out in our living room.

Can we do that? Can we confess God’s power in our grief?  Can we confess His power in our exhaustion? Can we confess God’s power in the darkest of nights?

Yes! We can!  I have found, no matter what I’m going through, that joy comes in the morning!  And that saying about dark clouds having a silver lining…..it is true.

I love this quote from Charles Spurgeon,

“O God, I believe that in the darkness You are brewing light, that in the storm clouds You are gathering sunshine, that in the mines You are fashioning diamonds, and in the beds of the sea You are making pearls. I believe that however unfathomable may be Your designs, yet they have a bottom.  Though it is in the whirlwind and in the storm, You have a way that is good and righteous altogether.” 

 

These beautiful words paint an image in my mind. An image of God standing behind the darkness creating something beautiful.  He’s spinning together goodness and mercy to follow us all the days of our life.

If you are going through a difficult season of caring for a loved one, and this season has broken you, I pray that you are able to find peace and hope in Christ our Savior.  If you are going through a season of darkness and grief, I pray that you are able to find mercy and joy in God our Father.

goodness and mercy

How can we pray for you today in this difficult season?

 

What are some verses that you’ve hidden in your heart for these dark times that would encourage others?

 

How has God healed your heart in a season of caring for loved ones?

When Things Change

When you imagined where you would be at this point in your life, what was it like? Is your reality anything like your fantasy? If it is, then was it the easy path you imagined or were there lots of twists and ups and downs?

I never imagined I would be a military wife.

I never imagined I would be a preacher’s wife.

I never imagined I would still be living in my hometown.

I never imagined I would have 3 sons.

I never imagined I would have experienced a miscarriage.

I never imagined I would teach in different schools.

 

I do imagine that you have some similar statements and could add to the list.

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In our lives, we have many transitional experiences.  You may not be familiar with the term transition.  When I am teaching my writing classes and we are learning about transitions, I tell them that transitions move us from one idea to another.  So, in our lives, transitions move us from one way of life to another.

Marriage

Children

Illness

Moving

Deployment

More children

Job change

Loss

All of those are times of transition and thus, can be a trigger to our angry reactions.  Those times cause us stress. Those times change our routines.  Those times challenge us in our relationships with Christ and our family members.  In this chapter, Amber said, “When we are going through change, go to the ONE who never changes.” When our lives change, we need to keep our eyes on God.

Malachi 3:6 says, “For I am the Lord, I do not change; Therefore you are not consumed, O sons of Jacob.” This verse reminds me that I do not have to be consumed by the change around me because God never changes. He is always faithful.   (2 Timothy 2:3)

malachi3During these times of transition when it seems our only reaction is anger, we need to consider these questions:

Am I being selfish?

Do I desire an easy life?

Do I resent where God has led me?

When we consider these questions, it will help us put our eyes back on God. He never takes his eyes off us.  When our eyes are on Christ, we are led by him, not our emotions. And y’all, I’m an emotional person.

I’d like to share part of an old blog post with you. Please bear with me.

 Do you have a thing that brings your comfort?  Something that just makes you feel good?

I have a thing for coffee cups.

They bring me comfort.

I can get up in the morning, open my cabinet and be drawn to a cup.  Freaky, I know.  I have favorites. My Relay for Life cups. My Navy Pier cup. My cup covered in gold stars. My Psalm 118:24 cup. My Space Camp cup (boy, did that one get this mama through a week of Space Camp last summer!).

Basically for whatever season we are having, there is a cup. For whatever mood I’m in, there is cup. For whatever I’m going through, there is a cup.

At least so I thought.

Recently, I opened my cabinet door and just stood there.  I didn’t have a cup to match what I was feeling. I didn’t have cup to match what I was going through. Choosing a coffee cup that morning was hard. And I cried.

To help me find what I was looking for, I ordered one with Carson’s artwork from school (hopefully it will arrive one day) and one with Colin’s artwork from school (Colin saw it and made me wrap it up so he could give it to me for Christmas). I had hoped those would help me out.

I got about 5 new Christmas coffee cups from students yesterday.  But I also got this one from Angela who works in my classroom. It reminded me of something very important.

joycup

What I was searching for that morning wasn’t a coffee cup. My joy doesn’t come from a coffee cup. My joy comes from Jesus.  I was searching for Him.  Regardless of the weather, my mood, or my circumstances, Jesus never changes.  His love overflows from my cup. He has come so my joy may be full, no matter what coffee cup I am using.

 

I wrote these words during a time of transition, during Jeff’s deployment.  I had taken my eyes off God briefly and allowed my emotions to get the best of me.  Yet, God used my friend Angela and my love for all things coffee to get me focused back on him.  1 Corinthians 15:58 reminds us that when we labor for the Lord, our labor is not in vain.  These times of transitions are not in vain if we allow Christ to lead and guide us.  And in these times of transition, we should give thanks.  1 Thessalonians reminds us to give thanks in ALL circumstances. Not just the good times. ALL times.

change

Are you in a state of transition?  What are your needs right now that we can pray about?

 

What can you find during this transition that you can be thankful for?

 

Are there any other verses of scripture that you’ve hidden in your heart to guide you during these times, to keep you focused on the One who never changes?