lessons


It’s been so sad to not post like I hoped to.  I am still working on the Love Dare with my kids, and I wish I would have done regular updates however it’s been so crazy around here.  I am also doing a study at church on parenting teens (oldest is a pre-teen).  But this study is really for all parents.  Terrific!!!!

One of the thoughts that has struck me while doing both of these things is that, as Christian Parents, we are not to be ‘A’shamed or ‘D’issapointed with our childrens behavior. 

Now here me out if this sounds wrong to you.  God is not disappointed with us.  He disciplines us to get us where he wants us to be but He is never shocked, dissapointed, ashamed, etc!  So if we take on His traits as a Christian, shouldn’t we be the same way?

I always thought that a certain amount of shame, like a Moms look, you know “The Look”, was ok.; we joke about it don’t we?  Really it’s not part of building a child up with unconditional love (agape love).  That doesn’t mean that we won’t discipline a child or let them experience natural consequences, but that there is no shame in screwing up.  And if we all think about it, haven’t we screwed up a time or two ourselves?  So why would we be surprised they do?  Disappointed and shame is just a way of saying I am shocked that you did that cause I never have or would.

Have a “Shockless” Day!

There will be 40 of these????  Ok, so I realized we are not the movie!  First two days just ask you to be patient and kind.  No problem.  Well as I discovered, harder than it appears when you are with them ALL DAY LONG!!!! 

I feel like I am realizing just how much I need to shut up.  That’s from Day 1. 

Today is to combine the patience from Day 1 and display kindness for Day 2.  Easy as pie!

My oldest is actually the one I am working harder on right now then my little one.  I guess it’s good I am just doing this across the board.  But GOD GIVE ME STRENGTH!  He has had an extra special personality for me lately. 

This morning though I think he knew he was really just making his own life problematic.  We all were moving on.  He got with the program a little while the little one had messy pants before bed and wet sheets and jammies for me this morning.  Now this is not that he can’t get up.  This is the same kid stealing from us at night every chance so it’s a choice.  My house is constantly smelling and it’s a battle. 

For the kindness we went out to lunch.  I don’t think they felt like it was any big deal.  We did have a good time but I don’t think it was like WOW! 

I have noticed that I struggle with conditional treats/activity syndrome.  I don’t want to encourage misappropriate behavior so I withhold treats/activities and such but there is a time where they just need to get them no matter if they are good or not.  We get blessings from our Heavenly Father even when we are not.

This is a great process as I know the Lord is making me into what He needs me to be.  That doesn’t mean it isn’t painful though.

Have a “Painful” Day!  (It just may make you into something beautiful!)

Have you seen the movie Fireproof?  If you haven’t or you haven’t read the Love Dare, let me share a little. 

The movie is based on a couple who is struggling in their marriage.  They are about to divorce when one is encouraged to do things to show love even though they don’t feel like it, for 40 days.

I really enjoyed the movie but the entire time I really wasn’t thinking of my marriage, I must confess.  I am not struggling in this area, right now, although I can always use to work harder.  My thoughts really went to the strainned relationship I have with my adopted son.

I went to purchase the book and have felt the Lord wanting me to use this Lent time to reach out and use this with both my children (my oldest is going through a pre-teen time and thought it can’t hurt). 

Today is Day 1

I am to have patience.  No critical jabs and no nit-picking who knew could be this hard and it’s only 11 am!  I just need to be QUIET!  I didn’t realize, already, how critical I can be.  I see way too much and correct way too much.

I really relate to how he felt that first day he started, in the movie.  I am still mad at some past issues so right now I am just mustering God’s strength to Shut Up!

I feel really good about this God assignment.  I will keep you posted.

Have an “Unconditional Love” Day!

I recently joined a Bible Study at a church that has a homeschooling group.  I figured a little time for them to be around other kids and me to be in a study.  Sounds good!!  Little did I know just how good.

The study I am in is about parenting teens.  My oldest is a pre-teen and I figure I need all the help I can get.  The teacher is Susan Cottrell and her book is ‘The Heart Connected Life.For Parents’.  I can’t even tell you how much I am enjoying this book, but I’ll try.  But first, here is a little bit about her:

I love to write, speak, sing, connect intimately with friends, and I love being with my husband and children. 


Nothing on this little round planet compares with living life on the edge by trusting Him every minute.


My favorite thing is to show people who God is, how much He loves them, and that He can do what He says he can do.

 

I haven’t finished the book but it’s amazing so far.  I know it was self-published, so I am really not sure how easy it is to get but I will put up her info as this book is a wonderful resource!  (I just checked the website, given below, and it’s available on there to order.)

Although it is written for parents with teens in mind, it is good for anyone that wants to connect with God on a heart level instead of a rule level.  You “must” read the tree of knowledge of good/evil.  Then you will see why the “must” is in quotes.   But if you aren’t a parent you will have to understand that this really is about anyone we are in close relationship with.  You can’t change them you have to work on yourself and that starts with a heart for God.

Basically, the book is discussing ways that we need to search our own heart for God’s will for our lives and not the “Christian” List.  And then applied that freedom living to parenting.  It seems so simple but the book really hits home on so many levels.

The sections in the book covers The Heart of Parenting, Whose Journey Is It?, What’s a Parent To Do, and Staying Heart Connected.  In those sections it deals with control, respecting child’s own journey (or others), respect, shame, dating, power of God over law, etc!

A quote, from the book, that echoed in my head today was:

“I have seen my reflection in my children so many times, that now if something is going on in the family, some dynamic, the first thing I look in is the mirror.”

I hope you will find this book.  It is really a great read, but make sure God is wanting it for you first 🙂

www.heartconnectedlife.com

Have a “Heart Connected” Day

I am 38; is that when your mid-life crisis begins? 

Ok, actually I haven’t done anything drastic, but I have noticed a change in my thinking lately.  My oldest is going to be 13 this year.  My hubby turns 40.  We will celebrate our 15th year wedding anniversary. 

As my children grow, as well as other events, I start to realize just how important it is to enjoy the “Season of Life” I am in.  Kids coming over to play, cooking meals for a family, even being busy.  I say that not to encourage busyness but to enjoy being able to go around like crazy and burning a few calories while doing so. 

If this is 38, who knows what I am going to be doing in the next few years as the Seasons begin to change.

What season of life are you in?  Are you enjoying it?

Have a “Seasoned” Day!

You’ll be surprised to find out who this is…

 

KURTIS THE STOCK BOY
AND
BRENDA THE CHECKOUT GIRL

In a supermarket, Kurtis the stock boy, was busily working when a new voice came over the loud speaker asking for a carry out at register 4.  Kurtis was almost finished, and wanted to get some fresh air, and decided to answer the call. As he approached the check-out stand a distant smile caught his eye, the new check-out girl was beautiful.  She was an older woman (maybe 26, and he was only 22) and he fell in love.

Later that day, after his shift was over, he waited by the punch clock to find out her name. She came into the break room, smiled  softly at him, took her card and punched out, then left.  He looked at her card, BRENDA.  He walked out only to see her start walking up the road.  Next day, he waited outside as she left the supermarket, and offered her a ride home. He looked harmless enough, and she accepted.  When he dropped her off, he asked if maybe he could see her again, outside of work.  She simply said it wasn’t possible.

He pressed and she explained she had two children and she couldn’t afford a baby-sitter, so he offered to pay for the baby-sitter.  Reluctantly she accepted his offer for a date for the following Saturday.  That Saturday night he arrived at her door only to have her tell him that she was unable to go with him. The baby-sitter had called and canceled. To which Kurtis simply said, “Well, let’s take the kids with us.”

She tried to explain that taking the children was not an option, but again not taking no for an answer, he pressed.  Finally Brenda, brought him inside to meet her children.  She had an older daughter who was just as cute as a bug, Kurtis thought, then Brenda brought out her son, in a wheelchair.  He was born a paraplegic with Down Syndrome.

Kurtis asked Brenda, “I still don’t understand why the kids can’t come with us?”  Brenda was amazed. Most men would run away from a woman with two kids, especially if one had disabilities – just like her first husband and father of her children had done.  Kurtis was not ordinary – – – he had a different mindset.

That evening Kurtis and Brenda loaded up the kids, went to dinner and the movies. When her son needed anything Kurtis would take care of him.  When he needed to use the restroom, he picked him up out of his wheelchair, took him and brought him back.  The kids loved Kurtis.  At the end of the evening, Brenda knew this was the man she was going to marry and spend the rest of her life with.

A year later, they were married and Kurtis adopted both of her children. 
Since then they have added two more kids. (Actually I believe they have 7 now)

So what happened to Kurtis the stock boy at a grocery store in  Cedar Falls/Waterloo, IA and Brenda the check-out girl?  Well, Mr. & Mrs. Kurt Warner now live in Arizona , where he is currently employed as the quarterback of the National Football League Arizona Cardinals and has his Cardinals in the hunt for a possible appearance in the Super Bowl.  Is this a surprise ending or could you have guessed that he was not an ordinary person.

It should be noted that he also quarterbacked the Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI. He has also been the NLF’s Most Valuable Player twice and the Super Bowl’s Most Valuable Player.

For those of you who have been reading for awhile, you may remember my 2007 12 Days of Christmas posts.  For those new, let me explain.

Our family celebrates the 12 Days of Christmas (prior to Christmas) by donating, serving, and/or volunteering on each day.  We pick different things for each day like wrapping gifts for the homeless or helping a friend in need.

Well tonight we will narrow down our choices and will be starting this weekend.  I hope you will join us.  If not for all 12 days, choose one.  Your children will get a LOT out of it!  My kids pass by the nursing home that we served homemade cookies to last year and always remember the residents there.  Even when we don’t pass by they still talk about all the wonderful things they were able to do.  It also gets all away from the “gimmes”.

Have a “Giving” Day!

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