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You Don’t Have to Do It All!

122399669I used to feel guilty about not contributing more to my church when I was a new mother.

It seemed the only thing I had time to do is take care of my little one–no time for anything else.

Whether you stay at home or work outside the home, time is at a premium when you have children. But there are some creative ways to do little things.

–You can fellowship over coffee at home instead of joining the Wednesday night women’s group meeting.

–If your church allows, you can volunteer periodically in the nursery and take your child with you.

Children necessarily limit our time for other activities. But with a little creativity, we can do small things.

Sherry Surratt, CEO of MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers), wrote an interesting article on this topic titled “Mommy Versus Ministry”. You can check it out here: http://www.todayschristianwoman.com/articles/2014/february/mommy-versus-ministry.html She gives more ideas that may be helpful with juggling children and ministry.

Do It Differently

135454689It’s been a while since I’ve connected with you. I apologize for my absence. For the past year, I’ve been pursuing some professional goals: working as a magazine editor, publishing a book; Genuinely Georgetown (http://www.genuinelygeorgetown.com/), both requiring speaking engagements and book signings. And finally, I saw a child off to college.  

But all the while, I’ve been thinking of you and my calling to encourage you. I’m glad to be back with a post for the first day of 2014. I’d like to start by encouraging you to try new things.

5 Ways To Do It Differently

Sometimes as moms, we get stuck in a rut; doing the same dishes, driving the same route to work, getting up and going to bed at the same time. Variety keeps life interesting. Here’s a few ideas to break the monotony:

  1. Spread out a blanket and have dinner outdoors.

  2. Get up before the kids and have coffee or a walk with a friend before the busy day begins.
  3. Ask your kids to memorize the way to school and have them be your GPS as you drive.
  4. Have a no-cook night. Invite your friends with children over for potluck dinner. You provide the dinnerware and a movie, they provide the food.
  5. Read a magazine you’ve never read before: try outdoors and fishing or crochet and paper crafts—something you wouldn’t normally read. You may find new subjects to pique your interest.

Think of other ways you can climb out of the pit and add spark to your life!

What Is A Mother’s Reward?

The ball rolls down the tube and hits the toy truck. The toy truck smashes into a wooden plank and tips another toy truck down a homemade runway. If everything works right, the second truck rolls down fast, hits a block of wood with a needle taped to the front and the needle pokes a red balloon. When the balloon pops, the experiment is a success. It all happens in about 30 seconds.

My daughter is studying physics and her team created this project. While I don’t understand a lick of it, it’s interesting to observe how cause and effect works.

Do you ever wish that the reward for your efforts would come rolling down upon you as quickly as that toy car in the experiment? Or, maybe you don’t ask for that much, just a pat on the back every once in a while.  Sometimes, it does seem as if no one notices what you do.

Paul’s comment to Timothy in 2Timothy 1:5 reminds me of one mother’s (and grandmother’s) reward. Paul was telling Timothy how much he had missed him. And he commended Timothy for his good character: “I have been reminded of your sincere faith, which first lived in your grandmother Lois and in your mother Eunice and, I am persuaded, now lives in you also . . .” Timothy had become a dear son to Paul and Paul loved and admired Timothy because of his character. Imagine how proud you would feel if you had been Timothy’s mother Eunice or his grandmother Lois.

Where did Timothy’s good character come from? Did it come over night? Eunice and Lois surely invested hours of teaching and modeling for Timothy.

We’re no different as modern-day mothers. We teach, we model, we love. From the moment our little ones are born, we pour into them.

Everything you do for your child matters, dear one. You are molding your children into the person God has pre-destined them to be. You won’t always get a thank you or a hug but the blessings will come and that’s a promise from God. The gap between what you are doing today and the fruit that will reveal itself in the future is called Faith. God will abundantly reward your work in the gap in a  far greater way than you can imagine.

Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. Hebrews 10:23

Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. Hebrews 11:1

photo courtesy Google Free Images

Imperfection, the New Beautiful

Nubby raw silk, unevenly woven linen, mahogany tables marred with decades of nicks and scratches: it’s the nubs, kinks and dents—the imperfections—that make ordinary things interesting and authentic.

Authentic? To be authentic means to reveal who we really are—the real us with all of our flaws and imperfections. Authentic:  an uncomfortable word for some adult children of addicts who work hard to cover the shame of growing up in an addicted or dysfunctional home.   However, it is through the total of our experiences, good and bad, that God can mold us into something beautiful. If you give your life to him, he can take all of the snags and tangles and weave them into the beautiful tapestry he pre-designed for you.  God takes all our imperfections, all of our experiences and shapes them into something beautiful.

Read Romans 8:28

Other Resources: The Grand Weaver by Ravi Zacharias

(Photo: Microsoft Images)