Survey

The Greatest Ministry we Have as Parents

As followers of Jesus, it can be easy to think that we need to go, go go, do, do, do, or live in some far away country to do what Jesus wants us to do.

Yes, sometimes the Lord does call our families to do that, but sometimes he calls us to stay right where we are.

In Mark 5, Jesus heals a man whose heart is so moved by Jesus that as Jesus is getting in the boat to leave, the man begs to go with him.

But, “Jesus did not let him.”

He said, ‘Go home to your own people and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.’

So the man went away and began to tell how much Jesus had done for him. And all the people were amazed.”

This verse makes it clear: sometimes the Lord just wants us to stay right where we are and to simply minister to the people closest to us.

As we raise our kids, we are doing one of the greatest ministries we could be doing: loving and leading our kids.

Remember that you can be a follower of Jesus by simply “going home to your family and telling them how much the Lord has done for you.” ❤️

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After things go how we prayed, we sometimes say, “prayer works.” But, the thing is, prayer always works. 

The phrase can infer that if something didn’t happen according to our prayers, then prayer doesn’t “work”. I understand that’s not what’s intended, but it can come across that way. Just because something goes how we prayed, doesn’t determine that “prayer works,” because prayer ALWAYS “works”. 

Prayer is powerful. 

Prayer aligns our will with God’s will. 

Prayer makes us less and him more. 

Prayer connects us with the Lord.

When Jesus prayed this from the depths of his soul: “Take this cup from me; yet, not my will but your will”, he reflected a beautiful prayer of honesty and wanting God’s will above His own.

Because God’s will prevailed, we can have life now & forever when we believe in him.

We can pray for ALL things. The Lord wants us to. 

But, I think it’s good to remind ourselves that when we pray, whether things go our way or don’t, God’s ways are above our ways. And, also to remember that prayer is powerful, one of its most beautiful aspects being how it connects our hearts to God’s heart.

Lord, make our hearts want what you want. Thank you that your ways are above our ways, that you are good, and that you always hear us and answer us. Thank you for loving us always. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Isaiah 55…
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.”

To all the Tired Mamas.

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This might seems simple, but in our busyness, it can be so easy to overlook. Lord, help us do this more! ❤️

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Worship & Working Through Truths With our Kids

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When our kids question or don’t grasp a particular truth about the Lord, it can be easy to want to make them believe it.

The other day my daughter and I sat on the lake dock talking. She was grappling with forgiveness. I wanted to pull the words out of her, but I knew I couldn’t.

So, I shared Scripture with her and what the Lord tells us about it and left it at that. I wanted to keep going, keep talking about it, but I didn’t. I was bothered some, but she wanted to talk about something else, so we did.

The next few days I did one of the most powerful things we can do as parents for our kids. I prayed. I prayed for the Lord to speak to her heart and give her understanding.

The next night, when I was tucking her in, she brought that talk up. A talk that I didn’t think went very well, but to her, sitting on the dock and talking was one of her highlights.

She had come full circle and the Lord’s words had settled into her heart. She put His words into action and we prayed together.

I know we don’t always get to experience that. Whether we don’t or do, as parents, we are called to love our kids and to continue praying for them, to continue connecting with them, and trusting the Lord with the rest.

When we’ve spoken Truth to our kids, if we can give them space to grapple with and reflect on aspects of the Lord, without trying to force particular words from them, they’re more likely to stand stronger with the Lord – to not be swayed, because they came to an understanding after reflecting and pondering.

I wonder if that’s why Jesus asked so many questions in the gospels, many being reflective ones, like when he asked about 80 questions just in the book of Luke.

For example, in Luke 10, “An expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

I love Jesus’ response – he didn’t give an answer, but asked a question: “What is written in the Law?” Jesus replied. “How do you read it?”

The man answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’

“You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”

That in-between place is hard. It’s hard to see our kids grapple with things and to wait.

But, that’s not all we can do. We can do one of the most powerful things available at our fingertips – pray for them, intercede for them, pour our hearts out to the Lord for them,

and then, Trust Him.

Our kids were the Lord’s before the beginning of time and they still are, so we can rest in that. His love for them is deeper than we could ever imagine.

Lord, As we parent our kids, help us in the in-between times. Give us wisdom to know when to speak and when to be silent. We pray the Holy Spirit would speak to our children’s hearts. Lord, show them Your Truth, Your ways, Your love and draw them to you. Thank you for the gift of our children. Help us to love them deeply and simply enjoy them today. In Jesus’ name, amen.

“And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.” Ephesians 3:17-19

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Jesus, help us be like you. ❤️

How We Begin & End Our Days With Our Kids Matters

Grogginess can take the place of devotions and weariness can override tuck in time. But, how we start and end our days with our kids matters. 

There’s no magic formula – just in some way, what is key, is making time to connect with the Lord and our children. 

Some mornings are busier than others, but it’s great if we can get in a routine most days.

It doesn’t have to be long, complicated, or drawn out. It can be simple. 

In comments below, I’ve listed some devotional recommendations that we’ve loved. I’d love to hear yours as well – pls list the ages it’s for as well. 

But, even if we just read one verse and talk about it together at breakfast, that can make a difference.

What is your nighttime routine like? 

At night, I ‘ll sing a simple song to my kids (Even though I can’t sing AT. All., they still love hearing me sing for some reason!) I’ll sing “Jesus loves [my child’s name], for the Bible tells me so…” or another song with their name in it. 

Then, I’ll say, “Tell me something about your day. Good or bad – anything on your heart.”

Taking a few minutes in the morning for a devotional and a few minutes at night to tuck our kids in makes a difference.

We all fall short, we all have busy mornings, we all have moments when we’re not feeling it, and that’s okay – there’s SO much grace with the Lord.

It’s okay. 

But, if we can strive to open and wrap up our days with connection, our relationships will see the fruit of that.❤️

“These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.” Deuteronomy 6:6-7

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On the hard days & great days with our kids, Lord, remind us of the gift our children are. ❤️

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To those struggling in your marriages (a note & a prayer),

I know it can be tough to scroll through and see people’s families or marriages that appear “perfect”. Ones that seem so much happier than your own, maybe evoking hurt, loneliness, and emptiness.

But, everyone has tough moments and seasons in marriage. 

And, moving through the conflict is part of what makes our connections deeper and closer. 

Since you can’t control your spouse’s actions or how they are, it can feel helpless at times, as you watch other marriages that appear to be easier and more seamless than your own.

But, that’s okay. Every. Single. Marriage. is different. There is not one way it is. 

When your heart pains you and you can’t see hope, there is hope in the Lord. The Lord loves you dearly. No matter the situation, you can ALWAYS pray and have hope in him. HE can change hearts. You can always bring it to the Lord. Always. There is power in that.

Know that I’m joining in prayer for you now. The Lord knows you. Your heart. Your hurt. Your pain. He sees you. 

Jesus, would you be with the person who is struggling. The one who has felt pain, loneliness, or hopeless in marriage. Would you bring hope and healing to them. Would you connect them and fill them with your peace, humility, presence, reconciliation, and joy. 

Thank you, Lord, for your unending mercy and grace. We pray by the power of your Spirit, that you would bring connection, life, and joy to their relationship. 

Where one wants to sow discord, help that person sow peace instead. 
When one wants to be defensive, help them put their armor down. 
When one wants to respond with rude words and a rude tone, help them speak with kindness instead. 
Where one continues reflecting on the pain, help them walk in forgiveness. 
Where one continues to argue, help them to lead with humility. 
When one wants to attack in judgement, help them to look inward to see what they need to change instead. 
Where one is building a wall, help them to be vulnerable, 
Where one is keeping distance, help them to come close, 
Where one sees the other as their enemy, Lord, help them look at one another with a graceful love that comes straight from you. 

Thank you, Lord, for how you are working and moving. Help us all reflect YOU in our marriages by loving one another well and choosing to love. In Jesus’ name, amen. 

*If you haven’t read the marriage devotional, “The Love Dare”, it is worth reading. 

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13 ❤️

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Martha Gets a Bad Rap & 3:00

Martha gets a bad rap. 

We often hear about how Martha was busy and distracted in Luke 11, while her sister, Mary, chose what was better and sat at Jesus’ feet and listened. 

But, do you know which of the two sisters was the first one to greet Jesus after her brother, Lazarus, died? 

Martha, but “Mary stayed at home.” (John 11:20)

That’s the part about Martha that often gets left out: Martha listened to Jesus and changed. 

Jesus cares deeply about us changing and turning our hearts to him. 

Martha wasn’t distracted this time. She went out to meet Jesus right away. 

What we see in this story is a beautiful testimony of change. 

Martha didn’t worry about preparing her home for Jesus like last time, but went out to meet him. 

Martha was given another chance and chose what was better: Jesus.

And I think that was pretty honoring to the Lord. 

Friends, that’s the gospel.

Change.

Hope.

Newness.

Redemption.

In Jesus. 

Through his death and resurrection.

We are given new life and new hope, when we turn to him.

In our mess-ups, our mistakes, our less than, Jesus meets us there. 

He lets us know where we can have real life, and then wants us to choose that. To choose Him.

Martha might have chosen jealousy and bitterness at first, but later she chose what was better. 

When we seek the Lord, he transforms our hearts and also gives us a chance to choose what’s better. 

We will fall short time and time again since we’re human, but Jesus longs for us to choose the better way: Him.

“Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’” John 14:6

“I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live.” Jesus (John 11:25)–_________________________________

Thankful that His grace and mercies are new every morning. ❤️

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During WWII, people all over the world prayed for peace at the same time every day. It is called The Silent Minute. 

At 3pm each day, my friends and I are praying for our country and the world, and we’d love for you to join us! I set a daily reminder for 3pm to remind my kids and I to pray for 3 things:

1. Healing, peace, & reconciliation for our country and world,
2. Wisdom for leaders, and
3. For people to turn to Jesus.

I hope you’ll join us! There is power in praying together. ❤️

“The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” James 5:16