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Valentine’s Idea, Book/Devotional Recommendations, Washing the Dish ❤️

Happy Valentine’s Day!!! I’m grateful for you!

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My kids love this – write what you love about each of your kids on separate tiny scraps of paper. Then, roll each one up and squeeze them into a balloon for each child (or put one note in each balloon so each child has several balloons).

Then, blow them up, write their names on the balloons and tape them to your kids’ bedroom doors. On Valentine’s Day, they pop the balloons and read what you wrote. Although, they might want to play with the balloons for a bit before popping them!

What are some fun things you’ve done for your kiddos on Valentine’s Day? 😊❤️

 


 

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My kids loved the top two devotionals and the bottom four have made a great difference in my parenting & faith. I’d love to hear abt recommendations you have. Here are the links to these:

Wee Believers “Love Journal” (they’re out of the kindness one): https://www.amazon.com/dp/1944689028/ref=dp_cerb_3

Indescribable: https://www.christianbook.com/indescribable-louie…/…/086101…

Wild things: https://www.christianbook.com/…/st…/9781414322278/pd/322278…

Raising Girls: https://www.christianbook.com/raising-girls-melis…/…/272891…

(The winner of this book Giveaway was Stephanie K. – Congrats! You can get he book right now for $5 at the link I shared above. Enjoy!)

Love Does: https://www.christianbook.com/…/bo…/9781400203758/pd/203751…

Raising Great Kids: https://www.christianbook.com/…/hen…/9780310235491/pd/35499…

Happy reading! 😊And, share with other parents who might be interested.

For more on Faith & Parenting, join me at LinseyDriskill.com.


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This quote by Mother Teresa is both inspiring and challenging to me.

It transforms the way I look at serving and why I do it. I don’t think any of us want our children to help someone because they have to, but rather because they see a need and want to meet it.

How do we teach our kids to do this? I think it starts with us, as they mimic just about all we do. How does it change our day when we don’t grudgingly do daily tasks, but do them out of love for our family and for Jesus?

If we take a moment at a time to pray and shift our perspective, maybe it will change our outlook and rub off on our kiddos.

Wouldn’t that be awesome. ❤️

Waiting, a Prayer, Finding Joy in the Ordinary ❤️

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Isn’t waiting hard!?

Noah is a great example of someone who waited on the Lord.

After being on the ark sooo long, Noah sent a dove out in search for dry land to know if it was finally time to get off the ark (GN 8).

It wasn’t.

But he didn’t send a dove out again the next day to check.

He actually WAITED 7 more days before sending it out again.
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Don’t we often want everything now, at our fingertips, in our timing, when sometimes, we just need to wait a little while longer for His timing?

I wonder how hard that was for Noah to wait longer after already being on the ark so long.
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The dove appeared again, so Noah knew it still wasn’t time.

In the midst of probably feeling frustration and yearning, Noah WAITED another 7 days before sending the dove out again.

This time, the dove did not come back.

I wonder how Noah felt knowing it was finally time to leave the ark.
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Whatever it is you’re waiting on, remember that just because it’s not happening now, doesn’t mean it’s not going to.

Sometimes we just need to wait “7 more days” for His timing. ❤️

“Be strong, take heart, and wait for the Lord.” Ps. 27:14
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To read more about pressing on, check out my article published by Focus on the Family: Pressing on through Rejection


 

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Congrats to Stephanie K. for winning the book Raising Worry-Free Girls. Here’s a link where you can purchase this wonderful book: https://www.christianbook.com/raising-helping-daughter-stronger-smarter-anxious/sissy-goff/9780764233401/pd/233409

Giveaway!, Enjoying Our Kids, & When We Don’t Understand Everything

To enter giveaway, comment below and like this post. Extra entries if you share this post. (: Sissy Goff is a Christian counselor and shares so much wisdom about raising girls in her book.

(Giveaway ends Friday, February 7th at 9am. Winner is picked at random. You must live in the continental United States to enter giveaway.)

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Let’s take time to enjoy our kids today – just for who they are. To take joy in them. ❤️

If they’re driving us crazy, to take a break and breathe. To ask the Lord to help us delight in them as He delights in us.

We can all find faults in our kids when we focus on that, just as anyone can find faults in us when they focus on them.

Today, let’s try to focus on what we enjoy about our kids.

A day at a time.

This doesn’t mean that we don’t instill boundaries and consequences. I’m a big believer in having those set up and doing our best to be consistent and following through, but

I also believe that our kids will respond far better when they know we enjoy them.

Lord, help us simply enjoy our kids. Thank you so much for each of them. Help us remember we’re not promised tomorrow so we can relish in the gifts you’ve given us today. In Jesus’ name, amen.


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It’s Here Right in Front of You, There is Always Hope, and a Prayer

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It can be easy as parents to think we’re missing out – thinking the “big” things and “big” adventures matter most.

But it’s the ordinary moments to relish in.

In the movie, The Greatest Showman, P.T. Barnum pursues his dreams and gets caught up in it all.

At the end of the movie, he has the realization that what matters most is right in front of him. He has his arm around his wife as they watch their daughters’ dance recital, and he sings:

“It’s everything you ever want
It’s everything you ever need
It’s here right in front of you.”

Mama, don’t believe the lie that you’re missing out – that there’s so much more out there. Or, that your kids need so much “more” when they really just want you.

On those sleepless nights and in those ordinary moments, know that you are doing the Lord’s work: you are loving those he’s given you, without being noticed, in the secret.

The Lord sees what you’re doing.
And He is honored by it.

When your mind wanders to those places, remember that what is beautiful and miraculous is right in front of you. You are watching a little human grow before your eyes.

The Lord has us in this place, in this season, in this moment. Let’s open our eyes to the “small” and “ordinary” and relish in it.

“It’s everything you ever want
It’s everything you ever need
It’s here right in front of you.”

“Children are a heritage from the Lord…a reward from Him.” Psalm 127:3

“He has made everything beautiful in its time.” Ecclesiastes 3:10

 


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Encouraging Our Children to Care about Inner Beauty & the Heart Above All

How do we raise our kids to love like Jesus did and look beyond outward appearance to the heart,

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to talk to people even when they think and look differently than ourselves,

to get that each person has a story,

to understand that people long to be known?

I think it begins with teaching our kids what matters to the Lord: “People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” (1 Sam. 16:7)

When I taught at a predominately African-American school focused on racial reconciliation, we were open and honest in our conversations about race.

I remember a conversation in one of my classes. One of my fourth grade students shared a story about white people and said to me, “Well, I’m not talking about you–I don’t see you as white.”

She saw past my appearance because she knew me.

It took knowing me to begin breaking down the walls of stereotype and judgment.

She saw me as a person.

Relationships make that happen.

They strip down the walls and stereotypes we build up.

So, how do we raise our kids to do this?

We teach them to look to the heart of a person.

We teach them that God has created each person uniquely and in his image.

We teach them that we are to love others who are different and similar.

We model it.

Our attitude toward people different than us is reflected to our kids.

I assume that’s what most of us want – to be seen for who we are, on the inside.

We are all very different, but we also have one beautiful thing in common:

Every one of us is made in the image of God (GN 1:27).

I am so inspired by MLK Jr.’s passion and pursuit to bring all people together and to look beyond appearance. I love his words here:

“Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.”

Let’s share these truths with our children so they will see people as people, and look past outward appearance to the heart.

“God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him.” 1 John 4:16


My husband began asking our girls the following question when they were 3 years old: “What makes you beautiful?” At 8 years old, they still answer, “My heart, mind, and soul.”

Let’s share this with our daughters so they will prize loving the Lord & others and inner beauty above all else, and

so they will know what truly makes them beautiful.

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A Prayer for our Children…

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When Our kids Make a Bad Choice, Crumbs, & a Prayer for Our Kids

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When I was cleaning up, I wondered how old my kiddos will be when their crumbs won’t cover the table and floor.

I can get so frustrated with the messes, but as I vacuumed, it hit me that if I had the spotless table and floors, it would mean I wasn’t gathering around the table with my kids.

Because this is the thing – those crumbs mean I have a house full of kids, laughter, noise, chaos, arguing, and joy.

I’ll take that any day over spotless “perfection”.

I sure am grateful for the messes because it means I have this family I love.

The why behind all we do reminds me of this quote by Mother Teresa:

“Wash the plate not because it’s dirty nor because you’re told to wash it, but because you love the person who will use it next.” Mother Teresa

Even cleaning up the crumbs is a way to love those closest to us. ❤️

“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18


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Donating Clothes WITH our Kids, the New Year, & Not Running to the Comfortable

IMG_0121It’s easy to throw clothes in a bag to donate without our kids.

It’s easier if we don’t have to hear our kids complain or argue about missing certain things.

But that defeats the point of giving.

When we get our kids involved with the giving, they can experience the joy of opening their grip, giving, & loving others.

It’s helpful to research the place where you’re donating with your kids so they get an idea of who it helps.

This makes it easier to open our grips on what we’re giving.

It’s great for our kids to join us when we drop the clothes off so they can see where the clothes go.

A lot of these places can also use volunteers to help organize the clothes – an easy way for our kids to help out.

When we did this together, I played music to make it more fun, and several times afterward we had treats to make it even more enjoyable.

Reading a verse about serving beforehand also gets our hearts and minds in the right spirit, reminding us that serving and the little things, is a way to love the Lord & love others.


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I love when the new year begins. Regardless of whether or not we follow through on certain goals, what I love, is the newness.

I love how it reminds us of what it feels like to have a new chance, to start again. To refresh.

I love how it reminds me of the great forgiveness the Lord gives us when he tells us that the old has gone, the new has come.

We are new in the Lord, not because of our “perfection”, but because of Jesus.

What freedom. What freedom we have in Jesus.

There is so much hope in the Lord.

No matter where you’ve been or where you are now, there is ALWAYS hope in the Lord.

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

Accomplishing goals is great, but knowing Jesus – his love, his peace, his joy, his presence – is where true freedom and victory are found.


Why do we always want to run to the comfortable?

I sometimes have this false notion that I should constantly feel at peace and completely happy.

That’s just not reality. I know this, yet my mind still wanders to that place.

It’s okay to feel sad in a season.

It’s okay to feel uncomfortable in a season.

It’s okay to “not feel like yourself” for a season.

It’s okay. Seasons won’t last forever.

We just moved to a new state. It will take time to build community and feel that sense of belonging and at peace in this new place.

It’s easy for me to run from that feeling – to long for the comfortable.

Even though I know the world doesn’t satisfy, my mind and heart can linger to the place of thinking it will.

But, the Lord subtly reminded me that it’s okay to be in the season I’m in. Just to be.

Not to fix it, because

He’s my steady.

He’s the one who is unchanging.

Some seasons are harder than others, but there will be beauty.

When we look to him, the Lord will bring beauty from emptiness.

The Lord will, if we seek him.

Jesus, help us gain our contentment not from approval, affirmations and perfection, but from you. Help us to look for peace in you, not this world. Help us to find joy in you, not in what’s around us. Thank you for giving your life for us – for experiencing so much pain and sadness so you could give us the greatest joy this world has ever known – life with you now and forever. Jesus, I love you so much. Thank you for loving us. no. matter. what. In Jesus’ name, amen.

“But now, Lord, what do I look for? My hope is in you.” Psalm 39:7

Here’s my article about not saving our kids from their emotions, but walking with them in it:

https://linseydriskill.com/2019/05/11/sometimes-kids-have-bad-days-too/