Noticing, A Simple Visual of God’s Love, & Contentment

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Noticing

My mind was spinning as I thought of our hectic schedule with sports, activities, and school.

As I prayed, I remembered Jesus’ words: “Give us TODAY our DAILY bread.”

I want to notice

the praying mantis on the rock,

the funny thing my son said I might have overlooked,

the stellar handstand my daughter did when she repeatedly asked, “Watch!”.

This is what happens when we are in this day; this moment; this memory.

We don’t miss it. We slow down. We see it.

I asked the Lord to help me be in today. To just give me what I need today. To help me SEE today. To really see it.

The spinning of a million things loosened, and I could breathe.

I felt time slow down.

None of us are promised tomorrow.

But we do have a choice to live in today.

I want to do that.

I don’t want to miss the cool praying mantis trying to camaflouge himself on the rock, I don’t want to miss my son’s funny saying, my daughter’s handstand, my other daughter’s cool creation, or the little things I love about my husband.

I see so many more things when I open my eyes to today and close them to tomorrow.

Lord, help us not to miss it. Help us see the wonder of today. The wonder of You. Please give us today our daily bread so we can slow down, notice, and really live today. In Jesus’ name, amen.


A Simple Illustration of God’s Love

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I remember being shown this when I was a kid and it has always stuck with me.

In the picture on the left, God’s hand grips us tight. No matter what. Even when we mess up (shown by the other hand coming loose). When we mess up and when we don’t mess up (represented by the picture on the right), God is ALWAYS with us- he never leaves us.

This is a simple way to show our kids (and us) that nothing can get in the way of God’s love for us.

Better said in Romans 8:39: “Nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Amen.


Contentment

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Ecclesiastes 7 spoke so much this morning. Verse 10 reminds me to be content in the now. Jesus, help us do this.

Help us follow your words in verses 8 and 9 too. When our spirits feel provoked, please settle them as we focus on you.

When our minds laser in on every issue, it dismantles us, but Lord, when our minds are steadfast on you, our Rock, it brings us peace.

Please be our peace. Where there is anxiety, replace it with your presence and calmness. Where there is anger and pride, settle it with your peace and humility. Where there is confusion, replace it with a clear focus on You. When we are too serious about everything, replace it with laughter and joy. Where we have preoccupation with ourselves, please replace it with a heart to love you and others. Thank you, Lord. In Jesus’ name, amen.


 

 

Mimicking Our Kids’ Pace This Summer

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My daughter can be sooooo slow getting ready. I found myself getting really frustrated trying to get out the door, and rushing her. Then, I read this verse: “Calmness can lay great errors to rest.” (Eccl. 10:4)

That morning, instead of hollering up to my daughter to hurry up and come downstairs, I went up to see if she needed any help. After trying the former many times, I prefer the latter. We walked downstairs to breakfast in peace.

Before we left for school, we started the process five minutes earlier, so even though she was taking a long time to simply put her shoes on, I didn’t need to rush her.

The words, “Hurry up”, wanted to seep out of my mouth, but I sealed my lips.

And one minute later, she was ready. Our morning was much more peaceful for her, her siblings, and me, because I didn’t rush her.

One minute. It was worth it to bite my tongue.

Believe me, I’m not always that patient, but I sure hope to get better at it. Instead of creating moments of worry and anxiety, I can help create moments of joy and peace.

Instead of depleting those moments, we can add to them by LEADING with peace.

I love this quote from Ann Voskamp’s book, “One Thousand Gifts” about one pastor’s greatest regret in life:

“Being in a hurry. Getting to the next thing without fully entering the thing in front of me. I cannot think of a single advantage I’ve ever gained from being in a hurry. But a thousand broken and missed things, tens of thousands, lie in the wake of all the rushing.”

Let’s embrace the thousand gifts, tens of thousands, right in front of us, by slowing down, mimicking our kids’ pace, and welcoming His peace.

Let Summer Begin!!!