What Can Happen With A Changed Heart?

In order to give people the love they need and deserve, one’s OWN heart has to be transformed.  That change requires us to do the hard work. The work of deep excavation. But if you are willing to do the work, the reward will be immeasurable. The ripple effect of love has the power to heal our land.

 

Love Triumphs.

 

With a heart transformed, you are free to love without fear.  So much of parenting is done from a place of fear; fear of what they’ll do and who they’ll become. But when we illuminate our hearts with love, fear is cast away and we are free to give them the love they need and deserve.  When we love children wholly, we truly have the ability to change our world, one heart at a time.

 

This is just one nugget from my recent interview with Joy Williams. Come on over to hear the rest.

 

What are you waiting for….CLICK HERE to jump over to Joy’s where we’re sharing hope for the heart and joy to the soul.

 

As always, it is my prayer that you’ve been Inspired To Live Fully!

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Beware of These Three Signs

Superwoman

 

Wonder Woman

 

Storm

 

Somehow the world has come to believe that we really are SUPER women. And we’ve bought into the lie. “I’m every woman, it’s all in me.” I can be assertive in the boardroom, passionate in the bedroom, gentle and patient with my children, slay on the runway, slice and dice in the kitchen, all at the same time with a smile on my face. And in the meantime in between time, I don’t require self-care because I don’t have time for ME while I’m tending to everyone and taking care of everything.

 

We’ll I’m come by today to shed the light of truth on this situation here and now. I pray this frees someone today for whom the Son sets free is free indeed!

 

The ability to do all and to be every woman because “It’s all in me” comes at a price.

 

Have exhaustion and weariness become your standard mode of operating? Have you been pouring out pouring out and pouring out some more until you’ve got nothing left?

 

To give and to serve are dear to the heart of God.

 

Repeatedly Jesus gave and served. But we also see Him break away from the crowds to reflect, restore and refresh so that He could then reengage from a place of power and strength.

 

Have you embraced self-care as part of your wellness routine? Are you exhibiting these three signs that indicate self-care is sorely overdue?

 

Join me over at TiffyTalks to continue reading.

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3 Steps For When You’re Feeling Weak

“Girl, you are superwoman!”

 

For once and for all let me dispel this myth. I am no superwoman, more like super mistake maker, super grace receiver, super Jesus girl. Truth be told, I am vulnerable. I get tired. I too have my kryptonite. If only you saw me when the pot of rice was on the stove burning, the baby was crying, trying to help three with homework and emailing the teacher about a missing assignment all at the same time; you’d would see my fragility.

 

Without my Jesus, I am nothing. Apart from the vine we are nothing.

 

“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.” John 15:5

 

That’s as super as it gets. We should all strive to be super vine clingers. Have you ever tried to be Superwoman? Have you ever tried to do and be everything to everybody? How’d that work out for ya? I don’t know about you, but that left me depleted. You can only love through Christ who strengthens you. You can only give through Christ who strengthens you. You can only serve through Christ who strengthens you.

 

Beware of falling into the pit of perfection. Perfect wife. Perfect employee. Perfect mommy. There is no such thing. You don’t have to try to do all and be all. Stay in your lane and be proficient at what God’s called you to do. He’s given YOU a specific assignment so stick to it. It’s when you go picking up other things, in all YOUR super strength and might that your hands get too full you can get into trouble.

 

I invite you to join me in clinging fiercely to the Father. From this place you don’t have to worry about perfection but will be the recipient of his unmerited favor. Do you ever feel unqualified, inadequate, weak or incapable? Sometimes I do. Sometimes I wonder if all my efforts will pay off. But the wondering is usually a trick of the enemy. When he sees a crack in your finish, he attempts to seep his poison in. He’ll try to play on your weaknesses and parenting is an area in life where we can feel the most weak.

 

So what do you do when you’re feeling weak?

 

  1. Give Yourself Permission To Be Vulnerable

 

Open your heart, release your concerns and fall into the loving arms of the Lord. In His strong arms you can be vulnerable.

 

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.  That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

2 Corinthians 12:9-10

 

Not only are you made strong when you are weak, but God wants to use you right in that place of weakness.

 

When people see me with my children and say things like “Motherhood is your ministry” my flesh used to prickle because the voice of the accuser said, “Yeah but they didn’t see you roll eyes at your kid last night”. But I know the truth. I KNOW that the Lord has supernaturally taught me to love, nurture and shepherd this little flock. I know he’s using me right at my point of weakness. Just like He used Moses. Doubting Moses. Unqualified Moses. Fearful Moses. Moses who was fearful and ran from his staff when it turned into a snake; God told him to PICK UP that very thing and use it as a sign. The same thing that Moses ran from was the very instrument that would hit a rock to bring water to nourish the people and would part the waters so they could cross on dry land. God used Moses’ weakness and He wants to use yours too.

 

Your weaknesses aren’t flaws to be magnified but opportunities for God’s grace to be glorified. Click To Tweet

 

  1. Acknowledge That It Is Okay To Make Mistakes

 

Making mistakes is part of the human experience. Give yourself permission to experience a full range of emotions and partake in the depth and breadth of your personal experiences, including the messy days.

 

  1. Be Compassionate With Yourself

 

To be compassionate is to care about the misfortune or suffering of others. But where is your self-compassion? I say you owe it to yourself. Be compassionate with yourself. The danger of being too harsh with you is that it can translate to being harsh with others. If you are overly concerned with how other views you, you can end up being harder on your loved ones than necessary. Then you can become even harsher on yourself for having been harsh to your loved one when that wasn’t even your original intent. This can be a painful cycle. So as you extend compassion and grace to others, make sure you start with yourself.

 

Remember, in your weakness you are made strong. Be strong in His might today.

 

To continue this story, pick up a copy of my new book, Purposeful Parenting.

 

As always, it is my prayer that you’ve been Inspired To Live Fully!

 

Happy to partner with these friends sharing the Good News Mommy Moments, Purposeful Faith, Chasing Community, Grace & Truth

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Are You An Intentional Encourager?

“Don’t!”

“STOP!”

“No!”

 

So easily these words can flow off the tongue of a loose-lipped mama and I’m talking about myself here. Think about the words you’ve shared with your children in the last four hours. Were the bulk of your words corrective or encouraging in nature?…READ MORE

 

Today I’m hanging out with an Intentional Encourager Nisha Muschette from Embracing The Call. She has a heart for living intentionally and I’m delighted to sit with her. Come join us.

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Will You Allow Yourself To Be Led?

All morning the song played in my head, “You’re a good good Father. That’s who you are. And I am loved by you.”

Those words were a balm for my weary soul. Though it doesn’t often consume me, the void I felt in my heart this Mother’s Day was palpable. My mother died when I was just 18 years old. And even before that, her presence in my life was irregular.  So as I sat, heart hurting, wondering how on earth I could even mother my little flock of six, when I had not been mothered myself, God bought me a reminder……READ MORE

 

Today, I’m hanging out again with my friend Katie M. Reid. Katie is a sweet friend, doting sister, loving mama and she’s got a heart for Jesus. Come JOIN US

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How Do You Reach A Child’s Heart?

So much of parental life is consumed with meeting temporal needs. Endless piles of laundry, shuttling children to and from activities, cooking meals, you know the drill. Not to mention adding in the amount of time, energy and effort expended in trying to get children to DO things they really could care less about or to get them to STOP doing things they are perfectly content with. Perhaps you’re ready to blow a gasket because you’ve told your pre-teen boy for the millionth time that he needs to shower daily. And you can’t recall how many times you’ve told your toddler not to jump on the furniture. While requests for showering and not jumping on furniture are reasonable, they do not serve as an investment in connecting with the hearts of our children.

 

The job of parenting finds us doing many seemingly important things for our children. But we want to be cautious to not miss out on the needed thing. Just as Jesus affirmed that Mary had chosen the better part, let us choose the better part and that is connecting with the hearts of our children.

 

Shuttling kids to soccer practice, hurrying up to get them to choir rehearsal, and rushing them off to bed, may be required at times but can have a way of choking out meaningful interaction. So how do we connect with our children when most of our daily interactions are moving them through to the next activity? We’ve got to be PURPOSEFUL!

 

Nobel Peace Prize recipient and novelist, Toni Morrison appeared on an episode of Oprah’s Lifeclass. On the show, the prolific author dispensed this wisdom,

“It’s interesting to see when a kid walks into the room… does your

face light up? That’s what they’re looking for…when my children used

to walk in the room when they were little, I looked at them to see if

they had buckled their trousers or if their hair was combed or their

socks were up…so you think your affection and your deep love is on

display cause you’re caring for them, it’s not. When they see you they

see the critical face…what’s wrong now? …But then if you let your face

speak what’s in your heart. Because when they walked in the room I was

glad to see them. It’s just as small as that, you see.”

 

She so eloquently illustrated the difference between meeting temporal needs and maximizing on the opportunity to connect with the heart. Oprah went on to say that one of her biggest learning lessons of the early 90’s was that the common denominator in the human experience is that everyone wants to be appreciated or validated. Given that, what are we teaching our children by spending so much energy on things that may not matter in five years, much less ten? How many moments will we have missed? How many hugs would not have been shared? How many smiles would have been deterred?

 

Will our children feel connected, loved, if the words we dispense are focused on what they haven’t done right, what they aren’t doing or what they’ve done wrong?

“You haven’t…”

“You aren’t”

“When will you ever…”

“You can’t…”

“You won’t…”

“Don’t…”

“Stop…”

“No…”

Yup, I’ve said them all too but I’m learning to do better. It requires reframing the dialogue. “Well what CAN I do then?” That’s what their hearts want to know. Purpose to fill their hearts with what they CAN do. Let us connect in ways they can perceive and receive. Research Professor, Dr. Brene Brown says, “We are hardwired to connect with others, is what gives purpose and meaning to our lives, and without it there is suffering.” Will you help minimize suffering by proactively connecting with the hearts of your children?

 

We connect with children by being adults who are vulnerable, humble and gentle.

 

We reach them through open communication, connectedness, inviting them, listening with the heart, knowing them and encouraging them.

 

Let’s pray!

 

Eternal one and lover of my soul, thank you for always extending yourself and seeking to connect with my heart. I pray that you will open the eyes of my heart so that I will be available to my children. Enable me to connect with their hearts through purposeful interactions. May I present myself gentle, humble and vulnerable so that they feel I am approachable. May I keep my eyes and ears open so that I can learn who they are and know them deeply. May my words be filled with grace. May I be intentional in maximizing upon opportunities to communicate with them. Knit me closer to my children now and evermore.

 

For the practical steps on how to reach them, order a copy of my new book PURPOSEFUL PARENTING, available now on Amazon.

 

As always, it is my prayer that you’ve been Inspired To Live Fully!

 

Happy to connect with these friends sharing the Good News Mommy Moments, Purposeful Faith, Chasing Community, Grace & Truth

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Do we ever REALLY know what we’re doing?

Considering people have been rearing children since the dawn of humanity, one would think we'd… Click To Tweet And if the theory of evolution that we’ve been taught is accurate, surely we’d all be awarded PhD’s in parenting.

Yet…

~We question our ability to get it right

~We make parenting blunders almost daily

~We can be wracked with guilt for the decisions we make regarding our children

 

We don’t know for certain how they’ll end up so we spin our wheels trying to ensure the best possible outcome. We carefully manufacture every facet of their lives right down to marching into the principal’s office to demand the teacher of our choice. We want them to be “well-rounded” so they must play a sport, speak a foreign language, go on missions trips, and travel on competitive teams. Yup, I know all about it. You’re not the only one. Been there, done that and wearing the t-shirt. . But not only that; they must eat only organic, gluten free, and sugar free. So dinner at grandmas becomes a delicate dance as to not offend her. What are we really doing?

 

I was having a conversation with a woman recently and she posed a very interesting thought. She said, and I quote, “People should learn how to become parents before they have children.” Is that really possible? It made me think of preparing for childbirth. You can read about each month of pregnancy and what to expect. You can tour the hospital where you’ll deliver. You can attend Lamaze classes, practice hypno-birthing or practice the Bradley Method, but when that first contraction hits, it can catch you off guard as if you’ve had no preparation at all. It can take your breath away and sends most women into a panic screaming for an epidural.

 

Parenting is somewhat like that. You can read the parenting manuals. And believe me there are plenty of them on the market. You can read about gentle parenting, conscious parenting, helicopter parenting, free range parenting, Christian parenting and the list goes on. But until you come face-to-face with certain childhood situations, you don’t know how you’ll respond. Your own experiences as a child, your child’s temperament, and your environment all play into how you will respond.

 

What I do know is some days I seem to be lost in the parenting maze.  I’ve been sucked into the vortex of meeting temporal needs that on occasion I’ve left the needs of the heart untended. What about you? And we don’t do that on purpose right? We merely want to raise successful adults and somehow equate having teeth brushed and rushing off to soccer practice as essential components for arriving at the goal.

 

But I say no more! It’s time we reclaim parenting. Let’s turn to the hearts of our children and turn away from our plans to engineer the next crop of productivity robots. We’ll get back to loving and laughing, teaching and training.

 

And this can only be done with the help of the Holy Spirit. He is our Teacher and our Guide.  He gently leads those with young (Isaiah 40:11). Having had broken experiences in being parented and not wanting to pass that onto my children, I rely on the Holy Spirit to partner with me in raising my children.  And He does not disappointment.

 

Could you use some encouragement for your parenting journey? Then check out my new book Purposeful Parenting officially releasing a week from today. But guess what? The ebook is already available on Amazon so download it now, don’t delay. Let us embark on this quest together. Healing humanity, one heart at a time starting within our circle of influence, right with the young people we know.

 

 

As always, it is my prayer that you’ve been Inspired To Live Fully!

 

Happy to partner with these friends sharing the Good News Mommy Moments, Purposeful Faith, Chasing Community, Grace & Truth

 

 

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Would You Dare?

“I triple dog dare ya!”

 

A saying children would make to taunt you, to incite you to take the dare.  Well as a child I didn’t take the dare and as an adult I’m not much of a risk taker still.  No big bold claims, no risky financial investments, no bungie jumping or parasailing. NOPE. I like to keep my feet firmly on the ground with some semblance of control.

 

But what is control? Just an illusion, really. A false sense of security.  The risk taker is willing to surrender control, throwing caution to the wind, thus creating space to catch the current and take flight.  Yesterday I watched a majestic bird in flight.  This bird sailed, dove, rose again and swooped down and up again he went, gracefully catching a current and riding it.  He would have expended much more energy flapping his wings to set about his course.  But the bird knows he can take a risk, catch a current and allow the current to carry him as opposed to fighting against it.

 

Last night I was given a challenge, a dare of sorts. I was asked to write down the ONE thing I needed God to do for me this week.  I was asked to take a risk and take God at His word. I was asked to BELIEVE God for just ONE thing and to write it down.

 

But would I dare. An immediate panic hit my heart. I dare not utter the THING that I really wanted Him to do this week. Let me play it safe. I’ll tuck away the thing I really need to believe Him for in order to choose the safe thing.  I’d rather pick the safe thing because if the true thing that I want to offer up isn’t fulfilled but this other thing is then I won’t be disappointed.  If I pick this other thing then I won’t be let down.  Yeah, let me pick the safe thing.

 

But the Father, in His loving kindness is always close at hand and close in our hearts.  He gently tapped me and asked, “Daughter why do you doubt? More than you know I want to help you. I see the situation and I’m ready to work a miracle.”

 

Even in light of that truth, I backpedaled even further, layer reasoning on top of what the Father already uttered. So off to sleep I went, not writing down that ONE thing. But when I awoke as I do every morning a song played in my heart.  And the song this morning says, “You’re a great God. You are great. Yes you’re a great God. You are great!” As that refrain repeated over and over, my mind began to catch up with what my Spirit already knows. Indeed He is a great God and wants to move mightily in my life and in yours.  But have we tied His hands?

 

Have you, by way of your thinking, restricted God’s mobility? Do you have the Father in a straight jacket?  Have you put the Holy Spirit under house arrest? He wants to lead you, to guide you, to walk you into the fulfillment of His will for your life but are you hampering the process with your hesitation to take a risk?

 

If you’re going to taste and see….it requires you to take a bite.

If you’re going to try Me now in this…it requires you to exercise your faith.

If you’re going to walk in paths of righteousness…it requires you to take a step.

 

I don’t think I’m much of a risk taker. But when I look back over my life I see that I’ve taken many risks. As a child I went all over the city on public transportation by myself. RISK. I left all that was known and familiar to attend college. RISK. I took rides with strangers. RISK. I quit my job to become a homemaker. RISK. I surrendered my womb and as a result have bore 6 children. RISK. I allow Him to lead me daily not knowing where my life is headed. RISK.

 

So I guess I am a risk taker after all.  I challenge you. I double dog dare YOU. Take a risk. Take God at His word.

 

What is ONE thing you need Him to do for you this week? As my sister challenged me, tag, you’re it. I now challenge you. WRITE IT DOWN. Believe. And watch God work a miracle. Would you type that ONE thing in the comments so I can pray with you? I know He’s able to bring it to pass.

 

As always, it is my prayer that you’ve been Inspired To Live Fully!

 

Happy to connect with these friends sharing the Good News Mommy Moments, Purposeful Faith, Chasing Community, Grace & Truth

 

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A Breadcrumb of Faith

FAITH

 

The substance of things hoped for.

 

FAITH

 

The evidence of things not seen.

 

FAITH

 

All is takes is a crumb. This size of a mustard seed is enough.

 

By faith God can perform miracles!

 

Join me over at Breadcrumbs of Faith where I’m sharing my faith story. Be inspired to activate and increase your faith.

 

As always, it is my prayer that you’ve been Inspired to Live Fully!

 

Happy to connect with friends sharing the Good News Mommy Moments, Purposeful Faith, Chasing Community, Grace & Truth

 

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United For The Journey

My Sweet Friends,

 

You ever have God call you to do the hard thing?

 

You ever have God challenge you to do the needful thing?

 

Well last year He did just that to me.

 

You see, I’ve always been a writer. Ever since I was a little girl, I knew one day I’d write books. I’ve got a purple notebook on my bookshelf that I’ve had for over 20 years with book ideas in it. And last year I was in the process of writing my first book on Honoring The Temple.

 

But God!

 

He has a way of stepping right into your situation. He told me to put that book down. He told me to resurrect the dry bones. Those were His exact words. In that, He was telling me to dust off writing I had done year’s prior when I wrote and facilitated an 8-week course called Raising Godly Children. He said He would put meat on the bones of that work and that that would become my first book.

 

Well I wasn’t really interested in that. It was much more fun for me to write about honoring the temple. It was easy to talk about what God says about proper nourishment, rest and exercise. It was exciting to delve into the scriptures and make parallels between the spiritual temple and the physical temple.

 

But to dive into a discussion on parenting?! Well….not as much fun for me. While I love being a parent, it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done. It’s not so glamorous. It’s not always easy. It’s the thing that keeps me clinging FIERCELY to the cross. Hence, it is the needful thing. But at times I can be a little more Martha than Mary. But in this instance, He was urging me to choose the better part.

 

And for that reason, God said that’s the very thing I need you to write about. That thing that makes you cry. That thing that has you calling out to Me. That thing that you have to believe Me for and trust Me for. Yes that thing that you can only do by My power and only with My grace. Yes, you will address THAT THING said the Lord.

 

Well nearly having a tantrum, I agreed to do that thing. When I went to resurrect that old material, I couldn’t find most of it. That nearly sent me into a tailspin as I panicked that all was lost. And again the Lord eased my worries. He said, “It’s okay. I’ve given you a new perspective and new grace for parenting so some of that old material isn’t applicable anymore. I will give you fresh words for the book”. And that He did.

 

57,000 words later, Purposeful Parenting was completed.

 

It was an arduous journey to complete this project. But through the journey God did an amazing work in my own heart. He softened my heart. He showed me His unfailing love toward me. And now I want you invite you to embark on the journey with me.

 

My book, Purposeful Parenting: Allowing God to Change Your Heart so He Can Reach Theirs will officially be released on May 30th. And I would love for you to experience the life changing transformation that I have experienced in receiving the Father’s love then being able to pass that on to the children in your lives. You will have the opportunity to read the book before it is released and you will be the first to sound the clarion call of Purposeful Parenting.

 

This group of people, the book launch team, will lead the way in loving children of any age wholly and completely. It starts with us. It starts with adults who know the way, go the way, and then show the way. In this group we will learn:

~How our own beliefs impact our ability to parent

~God’s plan and purpose for our children

~How to accept children for who they are

~How to connect with our children

~An extra bonus of how I was able to complete a book as a busy mama of 6

 

And much more!

 

If this sounds like something you’d like to be part of, you can sign up by CLICKING HERE. I’d love to have you partner with me as we directly impact our world for the good by pouring love into the hearts of children. And along the way, we will share laughter and maybe even shed a tear or too but that’s okay because we’ll do it in the safety of community. I thank you in advance for joining me in our quest to parent with purpose on purpose.

 

As always, it is my prayer that you’ve been inspired to be a Purposeful Parent!
Happy to connect with these friends sharing the Good News Mommy Moments, Purposeful Faith, Chasing Community, Grace & Truth