*GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED*
Is your glass half full or half empty? Are the difficult things that happen in your life a blessing or a curse?
Our farm family couldn’t have picked a worse season in our life to start thinking about home schooling. The year before we started to educate our children at home we experienced a drought. In “Farm Language” this means that there were weeks and even months when rain did not fall. There were clouds at times that promised rain, but it never happened. Then, late in the August, the little bit of crop that wasn’t destroyed by the drought was decimated by hail. Our main source of income, the grain crop, was nonexistent that year. The other part of our farming operation consisted of raising pigs from farrow to finish. In early fall, we were stunned to discover that our herd of swine was hit with a disease called Pseudorabies and were forced to depopulate. Depopulation is just a nice way of saying you are going to “sell-for-next-to-nothing” all the swine in your herd. Our income for the year prior to home schooling was negligible, yet the Lord provided a full time job for me working as a nurse at a nursing home about 20 miles from our home.
Working outside of the home while I had three small children to care for was the last thing I wanted to do…and yet the Lord used this difficult time to turn my heart toward my children and to set my eyes on what was important to Him. He used this time to create a desire in my heart to stay home and teach them. What seemed like an impossible situation, God not only used to conform me to His will for my life, but also to open our family’s spiritual eyes to see His faithfulness in our everyday lives.
I have a crystal clear memory of a hot and windy summer day. It was about 100 degrees; the wind was blowing at 40 miles per hour. Thick dust clouds, reminiscent of the great Dust Bowl days, were blowing across the gravel roads as I drove home from work. I had worked that day from 8-5 p.m. at the nursing home and it had been a rough day, but it wasn’t over yet! My children daughter age 7 and sons ages 6 and 2 needed to picked up from the sitters, fed, and taken to their T-ball game that started at 7:00 in a town about 8 miles from our home. The lesson I learned that day has stuck with me and I want to share it with you. All we had time to eat before we went to the T-Ball game was cold hot dogs and grapes. As we were sitting around the table and I was feeding my little ones, I gazed thoughtfully around my kitchen. There were undone dishes in the sink. My dirty children looked like ragamuffins, who needed a good hot bath while I was still wearing my nursing whites. With a sigh I grumbled under my breath, “This is such a mess.” Of course I was referring to the kitchen, cold hot dogs, and impossibly hectic schedule…. but, I was also referring to the difficult financial situation our family was in. My daughter piped up and replied to my statement, “Yes, but it is a nice mess!”
Her sweet, simple childlike response was the turning point in my thinking…in my attitude about the situation. There was nothing I could humanly change about my situation. I still had to work 8-5 p.m. 5 days a week and every other weekend. I still had to send my children to daycare. I still had to do dirty dishes. However, I could certainly change my attitude. Out of the mouth of a babe I heard the simple truth. It was a “nice mess”, not because it was pleasant or easy, but because God had placed our family there for a reason and hopefully a short season. In His immense wisdom, God was using these difficult financial times to conform us to His ultimate goal, that being that our family would bear the image of His Son. Ephesians 1:11-12.
Dear parent, please consider right now the difficult situation you find yourself in. I encourage you to hold these events up to the light of God’s word and examine how God could be using this seeming curse to become a blessing in your life. With eyes of faith and hope, take this time to reflect on how God is establishing His purpose in your life through this event. What ever situation you find yourself in, allow Him to change your view from a half empty glass to a half full glass as you see His consistent faithfulness unfold in your life.
Shelley Noonan lives on a farm in Nebraska with her dear husband Robert. They have two sons and a daughter whom they have home schooled for thirteen years. Shelley's passion is to encourage and create tools to assist parents in mentoring their children. Shelley is the co-author of The Beautiful Girlhood Series including The Companion Guide to Beautiful Girlhood, Beyond Beautiful Girlhood and the newest book of this series she and her husband wrote, The Three Weavers Plus Companion Guide: A Father Daughter Bible Study on Purity, and The Party Book! Easy Celebrations with Eternal Purpose! Her books, CD’s, Purity Jewelry, and Tea Time products are available at Pumpkin Seed Press, LLC. Visit Shelley at www.pumpkinseedpress.net.
Now for the giveaways from Shelley and Pumpkin Seed Press!!
Godly wisdom and advice await a mother and daughter who will read through these pages together. The Beautiful Girlhood Bundle contains Beautiful Girlhood and The Companion Guide to Beautiful Girlhood. Contains 32 foundational character training lessons for girls.
This bundle includes The Three Weavers father/daughter book plus The Principles of The Three Weavers CD. This set will help fathers get started with ease. The CD gives direction and encouragement, while The Three Weavers Plus Companion Guide gives a 7-week plan to build father/daughter relationships.
We all know how important the 3 R's of readin', rightin' and 'rithmetic, are for a well-balanced homeschool curriculum. However, did you also know that the homeschool mom needs to apply the 3 R's to her life in order to stay well-balanced? In this fast-paced hour, Shelley will give instruction and encouragement for the weary homeschool mom who needs to be revived and revved up with a three-part plan: Revitalize, Refresh, and Rekindle.
One of you will win all of this!
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Giveaway Ends Friday August 12th at 11:59 p.m.
Good "Luck" friends!