myself

Advertisements

Quote Challenge

Today’s challenge on the blog is a quote contest.  Who said the following:

“There’s a big, wonderful world out there for you. It belongs to you. It’s exciting and stimulating and rewarding. Don’t cheat yourselves out of this promise.”

Leave your answer in the comment section below, and no googling the answer.

Winner will receive a No Prize and bragging rights on the interweb. Have fun!

Sore but blessed

I woke up this morning, sore all over.  What?!  Why?  the grands had gone home on Saturday, so why was I so achy, I asked myself?

As I pondered my sore back and legs, I remembered that yesterday we had volunteered for nursery duty at church.  Ah, ha! That explained it.

During our time in the nursery, we’d spent ninety minutes playing hide and seek, and singing songs, and doing yoga, ballet, and exercises of various types. We’d washed farm animals on the floor and sang more songs, and did a spa day, which included all kinds of things to beautify our little ladies.

petitefilleetlego

We’d read books, climbed on furniture, and built towers with Legos before smashing them down again. We sawed things and hammered other things, and organized and rocked, and looked out the windows, and sang some more, before cleaning up everything and getting ready to greet mommy and daddy once more.

All this we did with the help of a bevy of babes more precious than gold.

Last week I had a lot to say about the lack of help in church nurseries. You can read about that here. Today, I want to say how much fun I had with five little girls in the nursery over the weekend.  Much of the fun of that time is due to my sister-in-law, who is amazing with the wee ones. She doesn’t have any grandchildren yet, but I hope she gets some eventually. She would make a terrific granny.

As we played with the girls in the nursery yesterday, I was reminded that play is learning, and learning is growth; that mentoring is fun, and imaginations are incredible gifts from God, and that I was privileged to be a part of all God had planned for these tiny wonders on one Sunday afternoon. Each girl is a part of His creation and each one displays His majesty in her speech, her thoughts, her actions, and her love.  Most amazing of all, the girls did not fight or cry for one minute out of that whole ninety.  Isn’t God good?!

When was the last time you volunteered for nursery duty?  What was the most fun you had during your experience?

Nursery Time

Be a Hero to a Baby! (1)

Staffing the church nursery–it’s a problem!

I can’t figure out why.  I mean, I know working the nursery takes time and effort, but it’s for the kids, right?  What wouldn’t you do for your kids?!  Could you not sacrifice one hour a week for others, as well.

GOOD ROLE MODELS ARE IMPORTANT

Little ones need big ones to love on them and show them the way through life. Show them the ropes, ya know?  Research says that those who have good role models do better throughout life than kids who don’t.  Not too surprising.  So why do we have such a hard time finding volunteers for church nurseries?

BE A HERO FOR A KID!

Working the nursery means you get a chance to a hero to a little kid.  It means you get to set yourself aside for a time, in order to benefit someone else.  You get to serve in a very important way.  And I’m not just talking kids here.  Moms, real live Moms and Dads, they need your help.

Who, more than parents of infants and toddlers, need to hear a word of encouragement on Sunday morning, more?

Who is more in need of a few minutes alone?

Who could benefit more from being able to hold their mates hand and snuggle in, without sharing the space with their wee one?

Who is more deserving of a spiritual recharge, an emotional break, or a little wink from their mate?

Tell me, who?

THINK ABOUT HELPING OUT!

Think about helping out at your church’s nursery this summer, won’t you?

Pray about it, and see if God isn’t calling out to you about this need.

It doesn’t take much to make a huge difference in the life of a needy family. Just an hour of your time.  Just one hour a week…and the rewards are huge!  If wearing a cap and mask makes you feel any better about being a toddler’s hero, let us know. We’ll fix you up.  But for goodness sake (and the sanity of moms and dads alike), would you please help out?

When your kids were small, did you send them to the infant nursery?  Do you have an active list of volunteers for your nursery at church?

 

You’re Not Listening!

We all yearn for that day when our wee ones will be able to speak to us in full sentences, but moms/dads, do we know what we’re asking for when we ask for speech?

Listen to this clip and the hustle this lil guy has learned to use to defend his actions.

Reminds me of me, trying to argue my case with God.  Hilarious!

When has your kiddo done something hilarious and you caught it all on tape?  How good are your listening skills?

 

A reminder for those who fear

 

bro_andrew_devotion_fear

Courage: it is the fuel that burns down fear. But it’s hard to come by. It’s a resource that we have to thirst for, hunt for, search out; it doesn’t come easily to us.

In order to be brave, we must first fear.

So, let’s get down to it.
What do we fear?

Upsetting people
Rocking the boat
Other’s opinions
Pain

We fear that we’ll screw up
That our intellects will not be strong enough to compete or comprehend
That we’ll dishonor God

We fear that we’re not enough, after all
That we won’t be perceived as gracious, loving, nurturing, or feeling enough.

But what are we afraid of, really?

Looking stupid?
Making mistakes?
Offending others?
Ruining our lives?
Suffering for our miscalculations?

Aren’t these born of pride?
Aren’t they all redeemable?
Can’t they all be addressed with an apology, an amends, and a prayer?

Isn’t our God forgiving, to the nth degree?
Isn’t He merciful?
Doesn’t He command us to be strong and of good courage?

That supposes that we will be facing fear in many places.

I need to get over this fear thing.
I need to trust God more.
I need to introduce my fears to my God!

Do I trust Him, or don’t I?
It really IS that simple.
It just plays hard.

Fear not, for I am with you;
Be not dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you,
Yes, I will help you,
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’ Isaiah 41:10

Fear is not my vision, nor goal, and I need to remember that.

Let’s stop looking at all the obstacles in our way, and focus on our Father.
Daddy won’t let us down.
Never has, never will!
Remember, then take courage and make it your own.
Act, bravely!

What is your biggest fear? How often have you been afraid, only to discover a lion roaring inside and your courage regained? Do tell…

 

Acceptance fuels Hope

Acceptance-1

The wilderness will rejoice and blossom. Like the crocus, it will burst into bloom. Isaiah 35:1-2 NIV

Acceptance is the answer to all my problems today. When I am disturbed, it is because I find some person, place, thing, or situation—some fact of my life—unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity until I accept that person, place, thing, or situation as being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment. Nothing, absolutely nothing happens in God’s world by mistake. 12 Step Prayer

Your life and life experiences, right now, do you love them, hate them, resent them or rejoice over them? Feelings are such strange creatures, aren’t they?

Whatever my emotions might like to speak to my soul today, I know that God has me where I am because it is what I need to mold and shape me in the image of His Son.  Honestly, I don’t always like it, but I am beginning to learn to accept it with a little more grace.

As Christians, we don’t believe in happenstance or chance. Luck is not our friend, nor is it the way forward for us. For us, it’s important to accept that God is in control and will remain so for the entirely of our existence. It’s what makes Him God and it’s truth, so we need to consider it.  It also should bring us hope and a firm assurance, to realize that God is God and forever in control, for we know that He has our good in mind at all times.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

Some people use Jeremiah’s words to assure themselves of good things ahead for themselves. But what kind of hope do they have for the future? Will God’s blessing over them bring them riches, and if so, what kind of riches? What are we looking for from God?

Wealth?

Health?

Power?

Prestige?

A safe haven?

A place to live free and happy in the light of God’s love?

Jeremiah was talking to a people about to go into captivity when he delivered his assurance promise. No one needed it more than the audience to whom he preached.  His message was one of restoration. The pain Israel was about to bear would not last forever. One day, God would restore what sin had stolen.

It’s important that as we enter into a time of trial and temptation, when our defenses are down and our souls are weak, that we have a promise to cling to…something to get us through the hard.

This morning, as I spend a considerable amount of time in prayer (because yeah, today I need extra of God and His consoling Spirit), I’ll remember God’s promise to me.

If we will trust Him with our tomorrows, He will get us through today.

If we will confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us (1 John 1:9).

If we will blossom where He plants us, He will make us into testimonies to His love.

Today, I’m using prayer to get me willing.

How do you become willing to obey God and bloom where you’re planted?  How important is hope to you, in the hard times?