10 Reasons to be Thankful

10 Reasons to be Thankful

One thing that life has taught me, specifically the Christ-centered life, is to be thankful. There are so many reasons to give thanks to God. I find that if we focus on the little, everyday things, it makes for a more joy-filled and peaceful life. But if we are being truthful, there are times that we are so self-centered that we forget to give God thanks for the simple, everyday things life brings our way.

Last night while I was in prayer I heard the Lord whisper softly, “Remind my people to be thankful.” And while this post will be seen by many, please know dear sister, that I write this list for myself just as much as I write it for you. As you read the items on this list, think of some things that you could be more appreciative of. Be sure and make a conscious decision to be thankful. There is always something to be thankful for, even in the most difficult situations – God is in the midst of it all. Let’s cultivate an attitude of thankfulness today, and every day.

10 Reasons to be Thankful

  1. For the gentle wind that blows our hair out of place. He is with us.
  2. For the ability to kiss our baby’s boo-boo. That band aid may seem simple to us, but He clothes it in love and they remember.
  3. For the slight chill in the morning after a fresh rainfall. The rain may mess up our fashion plans, but it sends nourishment to the earth and yields fruit to bless His people.
  4. For the fever that our baby has. Their body still has the ability to fight off infections and sickness, and that, dear sister is a blessing.
  5. For the ups and downs in motherhood. It makes us stronger and gives us character.
  6. For the messy rooms our children occupy. While the mess can be daunting, the little lives and personalities who live in them are an absolute blessing. I’ll take the mess as long as I can have my babies!
  7. For empty milk containers put back in the fridge. While this used to upset me, I’ve learned to be thankful. I adore the tiny hands that put it there, and for that, I am thankful.
  8. For nights when I don’t sleep because my child needs me. In times past I’ve been tempted to feel sorry for myself when I am sleep deprived for serving my children. I decided to ditch that attitude and thank God I am able to be with my children when they are ill. What a blessing that is!
  9. For the wrinkles that are forming around my eyes. I heard my grandma once say that those who smile often are the first to have wrinkles around their eyes. I adore my soft wrinkles because I smile often.
  10. For the stretchmarks my belly bares. I am a proud momma of 5. While we only have the chance to raise 3 of the 5 here on earth, my belly marks the 5 that this momma will always love in her heart. What an honor to be chosen to be a mother.

My challenge to you (and myself) is to stop and take the time to be thankful in the very moment that you are feeling ungrateful. Discipline yourself to do the opposite of what your flesh wants you to do. Make it a habit to praise God in the very moment that your flesh is telling you to feel sorry for yourself. While it isn’t easy, it can become a powerful habit that will change the very landscape of your existence. And I promise you that it will be a glorious victory! You can see 20 more ways to be thankful if you are looking for even more encouragement!

Cheering you on,

Carlie K. @ Managing Your Blessings

When I Forget To Ask

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Some days seem longer than others.

Those days when I am not the mom I want my kids to learn from.

The other night after each of my children fell asleep I went into their rooms. I felt like I didn’t enjoy them that day.

It wasn’t until they fell asleep, when I realized that my patience level was embarrassing to admit. I held each of their hands and watched their peaceful faces as they were sleeping. I began to cry and ask God for help. I thought about how it was the only time I had asked him for help that day.

I talked to each of my dreaming babies about how much I love them. How much I really do enjoy them but I forget about what really matters. I forget that speaking truth to their hearts is much more important than how they act on the outside.

I was reminded that I wouldn’t need prayer if my life was perfect. I wouldn’t need to depend on God if I never felt the guilt of my impatience. I forgot God’s truth and I relied on myself. My needs and what I thought was best ruled our home—but all of it is broken.

Nothing without God.

I held their little hands and was humbled. I am reminded of the good that I don’t deserve. How sweet is grace, I need it every day.

With Love,

Natalie Falls at nataliefalls.com

4 Practical Ways to Reach the Heart of Your Child

4 Practical Ways to Reach the Heart of Your Child

Our children are in a stage of shaping and growing while under our care. They have so much potential and we have so much influence in this season. Often we have goals and ideals for our children that we want to implement but aren’t sure how to do that in a practical way.

And sometimes I think we can overcomplicate something that can really be quite simple. Sometimes it’s not always easy making the hard decisions for our children, but the Bible gives us some great direction as parents.

So here are 4 things you can do to reach the heart of your child.

Spend Time With Them

This is one of the most tangible things you can do with your children, and honestly, it doesn’t need to be anything fancy. Play a game, read a book, kick a ball back and forth outside. Most of the time, children don’t care what you do with them, just that you do something with them.

Spending time with your children is the most tangible way to show them you love them. That’s how they perceive it best. And there is no way around this very real need. It’s a large part of nurture that cannot be ignored. You can reach the heart of your child by being their biggest fan, by investing yourself in their lives in more ways than just meeting their physical needs.

Protect Their Heart from Negative Influence

There is much debate which abounds when it comes to what is considered negative influence. This is a place where discernment is necessary for you to make those decisions.

It begins with the media allowed in your own home. This may be the most powerful influence aside from their peers. What children take in is what helps shape their beliefs and can either shape their hearts with goodness or with evil. I think because there is so much garbage and very little wholesome media, we tend to compromise.

We cannot lie to ourselves and believe that negative media won’t have a negative effect on our children. That’s not to say that a child will become a criminal for watching negative television, but it can still awaken and feed behaviors and desires that are not of God. It is our duty as parents to keep their hearts protected, especially as they mature. What may be OK for us as adults to watch could be damaging to a child. Be mindful of what their hearts are taking in.

Plant Seeds of Truth

Children are born with a sinful nature and their hearts need to be taught and shaped with the Truth of God’s word. A child left to himself is likely to draw upon his own conclusions when not offered direction and instruction.

This may not seem like a practical step, but learning and knowing God’s word, planting in the hearts of your children, is a very practical step. The more they know the Truth, the more they can draw from it when faced with conflict and situations that require wisdom.

“For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven, And do not return there without watering the earth And making it bear and sprout, And furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater; 11 So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; It will not return to Me empty, Without accomplishing what I desire, And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.” Isaiah 55:10-11

There are so many wonderful resources and tools out there to help with this. Doorposts is my personal favorite. I understand teaching our children the Bible can get overwhelming! Start small.

Our children cannot live God’s truth and know what is good and right and true if they aren’t taught or don’t see it. Which leads to my next way.

Be an Example

Jesus was our ultimate example and we often draw upon His leading to live our own lives. We need to do the same for our children and lead by example. We need to be constantly in the Word, on our knees, and living out what God has called us to do. We need to apologize when we make mistakes and show our children we are not perfect and that we need Christ.

Christianity isn’t about getting all the rules right, because we won’t. It’s about embracing the grace we have been given and utilizing it to empower us to live a life worthy of the calling of Christ. (Ephesians 4:1) When we seek Him, we will find Him. Our children need to know we seek Him and live for Him. It shouldn’t be hidden.

The biggest follow up I can offer you in light of these tasks is to be consistent. Consistency is a key to growth and stability.

For-His-Glory
ChristinSlade.com

5 Scriptures to Bring You Peace

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5 Scriptures to Bring You Peace

When All You Want to Do is Escape from Life

Yesterday, I was a bit overwhelmed (and that might be the understatement of a lifetime!).

I work from home as a writer, and I have a book deadline that is looming. My husband is in Australia for work, and my young kids ages 7, 4, and 4 are always extra needy when John’s gone. (Insert LOTS of testing mom.)

Did I mention I’m also homeschooling? And I won’t dwell too long on my 20-year-old son who lives at home and still enjoys mom time, or my 84-year-old grandmother who lives with our family, or our puppy who’s still in the chewing phase and decided to put a nice hole in the living room carpet! (I wish I were joking!)

When I sat down with my Bible, devotional book, and journal yesterday morning I was empty. If anyone wanted to escape from “life” at that moment, it was me. But as I began to dwell on God’s truths, everything began to change. I was reminded that Jesus never intended for me to carry my burdens alone.

Instead, this is what He had to say:

  1. Come to me. Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” —Matthew 11:28 NIV
  2. Cast ALL your anxiety. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. —1 Peter 5:7 NIV
  3. Do not worry. Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear.” —Luke 12:22 NIV
  4. Do not be afraid. Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the LORD will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you. —Deuteronomy 31:8
  5. Do not be anxious about anything. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. —Philippians 4:6

I’m not sure when I got the idea that I had to handle everything myself. I’m pretty certain God didn’t set up “the perfect storm” and then sit back to watch, thinking, “Well, let’s see how she gets out of this one.”

Instead, God allows the hard stuff of life to happen in order for us to discover Him and lean into Him in the middle of our overwhelmed state. This poem (written many years ago!) explains it perfectly.

Child of My love, lean hard,

And let Me feel the pressure of thy care;

I know thy burden, child, I shaped it;

Poised it in My own hand, made no proportion

in its weight to thine unaided strength;

For even as I laid it on, I said

I shall be near, and while he leans on Me,

This burden shall be Mine, not his;

So shall I keep My child within the circling

arms of My own love.

Here lay it down, nor fear to impose it on a

shoulder which upholds the government of

worlds.

Yet closer come; thou art not near enough;

I would embrace thy care so I might feel My

child reposing on My breast.

Thou lovest Me? I know it. Doubt not then;

But, loving Me, Lean Hard.

—May Prentiss Smith
“Streams in the Desert”, September 12 Devotion

Today, print up this free printable and dwell on these Scriptures. Cast your cares on Him. Lean hard, and wait for peace to come!

As Robert J. Morgan writes in his devotional book All to Jesus:

“No problem is too small for His notice, none too large for His power. He’s concerned about each and every problem I have or would ever have, public or personal, large or little. He can handle them, and I should give them all to Him in total trust.”

Friend, will you give all your cares to Jesus in total trust? He’s waiting for that very thing. Lean in!

For you today,

Tricia Goyer

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