Monday, February 05, 2018

Comfort Outside of My Comfort Zone

I am so glad when God asks us to step outside our comfort zones He sends the "Comforter" with us.

Moving from Georgia to South Dakota was THE HARDEST thing I've ever done in my life.
Stepping outside my comfort zone was indescribable.
Learning to trust in God for ALL our needs was humbling.
I wasn't sure how I would survive out here SO FAR from my family.
I had never lived this far from everyone I love the most.

The longer we live here, the easier it gets. Each day seems to get better.
The fact that I have been able to go back and see family several times has been very encouraging.
Knowing that its not impossible for me to go back and visit them all.
God has been so good to provide the funds to allow us to do that.

I am not to the place where I feel like this is home.
But when I go back to visit GA it doesn't quite feel like home either.
So where is my home? My home is in Heaven.
This world is not my home, I am just passing through....



The Holy Spirit is our Comforter. He carries us through the hard times.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

What NOT to say to a Homeschooler...

Here are some suggestions on what you should NOT say to a homeschooler when you meet them.
Maybe you are concerned and not sure how to react. I get it, its different, its weird. I know "Why would anyone want to homeschool?" But what do you say to them?
DON'T SAY:

"Aren't you worried about socialization?" {#1 comment I get}
We are not all alone. Our children do see other humans between church, library, field trips and grocery shopping. They even play sports from time to time.
Instead what you should say is "Have you met any other homeschoolers in your area?"
Show you care by being interested in HOW instead of worrying IF we will be socialized.
We will see other kids and form relationships.

"I didn't know people still did that!"
Yeah I know it's kinda like seeing a ghost right. You have heard of other people who have known a homeschooler. You may have seen something on TV about it. Meeting one in real life {mind-blowing}. Instead say "I think you are the first homeschool family I have ever met"
Show us that you are interested in learning more about it. Ask questions about how we spend our days. We already know we are different from most, there's no need to point it out.

"What makes you qualified to teach?" 
This one really hurts because it implies you think I'm NOT qualified. My response is I graduated High School and the state doesn't even require a college degree. Most have never taught before and it is not easy. So don't take a jab in their confidence. Instead say "I'm impressed! That's a HUGE responsibility you are taking on!" It's about taking responsibility for our child's education.
We've been teaching them since they were born.

"How do you stand being around your kids
ALL THE TIME?!"
Often said with a smile and a wink. (the humorous approach). Yes I know kids are "awful" what ever will I do without my me time? I won't pretend to be offended by this. We all love our kids whether are with them 24 hrs a day or 12. We aren't waking kids up at dawn to rush them off to school. We don't spend our evenings stressing over homework. We have challenges they are just different. Instead you could say " Your kids are so blessed to have a teacher who loves them so much."
Some days we do wish a bus would take our kids away. But there are reasons we didn't go that route. Some days it can be hard but not as hard as you imagine.  

"Are you planning to do this FOREVER?!"
When you word it that way you'll get a vague response like "we'll just see how it goes"
This is homeschool code for NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS
Instead say "I hope it all works out and I'll be praying for you"
Unless you're a close family member or a Best Friend we are not going to tell you all our hopes and dreams. We are going against the grain in a harsh society where strangers openly question our children's intelligence. A little encouragement goes a long way. 

There are as many reasons to homeschool as there are homeschool families.

If you've ever said these things just apologize and offer to help and give a mom a break.




Tuesday, January 09, 2018

What is YOUR gift?

God gives each one of us gifts to use for His glory.
I believe God gifted me with the ability to sing.
{I know what you are thinking. "That sounds arrogant!"}
But I really cannot think of anything else I am good at.
There are things I like to do but I'm not the greatest in those areas.
I love to sing!
If it was my choice I probably would not even own a TV.
I just want to listen to music and sing ALL DAY.
But in reality that is not possible while trying to homeschool 4 boys.

WHAT IS YOUR GIFT?

What can you do well and use those talents for the Glory of God?

Have you ever really thought about that?

I try VERY HARD to be humble and not proud about anything in my life.

I don't like to brag on myself or my husband to brag on me when he preaches.

I have been to churches where I wanted to sing and never got the opportunity.

One time I asked and the piano player (who only played by ear and could play everything) said she didn't know how to play my song.

Then at another church I never got the opportunity because it was always the pastors daughters singing every Sunday. 

I would get SO DISCOURAGED....feeling like I wasn't good enough.
"Why can't I sing at church?   What's wrong with me?"

I never want to be THAT PERSON in a church, who always sings every Sunday and makes all the other people think they were not good enough.

I am NOTHING. I know I am not perfect (the devil reminds me of that daily)

I REALLY wish I could just hide behind the pulpit and sing where no one could see me.

Or sit in the back of the church and sing. I DON'T want to be seen I just want to SING!

So when you figure out your gift, try to remember to be humble and use it for God's glory.



Sunday, January 07, 2018

5 Habits of a Woman Who Doesn't Quit

When things get hard and life brings struggles we CANNOT give up!

The devil would love to see us fail. He walks about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour.

I don't know about you but I am STUBBORN.....I don't want to let anyone destroy me.

I like to go against the grain....be different.

Its a lonely life to live though. Being set apart and separated from worldly things.

We are not to be conformed by the world. 

BUT I won't lie....there have been times when I wanted to give up....
stop trying...."WHY BOTHER?!"

Its so much easier to have a spouse that is on the same page with you.

Having the same convictions as my husband and not REALLY doing it alone is encouraging.

5 Habits of a Woman who Does NOT QUIT:

-We have to be open to God's will for our lives
-Do the next right thing
-Pray, Pray, Pray
-Read your Bible
-Focus on your Blessings

"BLESSED ARE THE FLEXIBLE
FOR THEY SHALL NOT BE BENT"

Saturday, January 06, 2018

Examining Expectations

I want my boys to behave and {almost perfect} most of the time.

If I'm honest, I just want them to NOT embarrass me. LOL

But I have to remember they are human. They have the same sinful nature as I do.

I cannot expect any more from them that God does from me.

I fail daily. I make mistakes. He forgives and loves me through it all.

My expectations are too high most of the time then I am disappointed when they make mistakes.

I try to remind myself God feels the same way when I mess up.

If we don't expect perfection the mistakes won't hurt so bad.

Maybe we should just EXPECT our children to mess up,

God knew we would do things we shouldn't but He sent His son Jesus to die for our sins anyway.

WHAT A GOD!!!

"But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us."  Romans 5:8

Friday, January 05, 2018

The Stuggle Is REAL!

Parenting is THE HARDEST JOB in the WORLD!
Training children is a repetitive EXHAUSTING process.
I get so tired of repeating myself EVERY DAY!
I know I'm not the only mom who struggles with this.

"Why can't they remember the rules?!"
{I think to myself}

"Do my children speak English?"
{I often wonder}

Then I remember how much my parents had to repeat things to me when I was a child.

Our children will only be with us for a short time compared to our entire lives.

For example if we are married 50 years, we only have our boys for about 18 years of their lives.

Time is short when you look at it like that.

My window of opportunity is closing in. We are trying to train them up in the way they should go before they leave.

Teaching them life lessons and hoping I didn't forget anything.

I want them all to grow up to be good husbands one day and good fathers.

Mothering is a daily sacrifice of myself, my time, my energy to pour into my children DAILY.

The Struggle Is REAL!

Thursday, January 04, 2018

What REALLY matters?

Winter time is the time of year we tend to get colds and coughs. We sleep less and cough more. I've been using the diffuser for my essential oils daily. Boiling water on the stove keeps moisture in the air. Also using a humidifier upstairs.

Nose bleeds are my new normal. Blowing my nose is scary because I never know when it might start pouring blood.

My homemade remedies for cough, vicks and sore throat soother are used daily.

Its too cold to play outside and everyone just wants to cuddle up on the couch and watch movies.

Then there is the mom guilt. I try not to beat myself up when my kids aren't as active or when I don't keep the house clean.

I have learned over the last 19 years of being married that a clean house doesn't mean I'm a good wife or mother. It just means we live here. "People are more important than things".

Who cares if the laundry stays in the basket a few days?

I have relaxed a lot over the years about the housework. I used to stress out SO BAD about keeping things spotless.

Prioritizing things in order of importance helps me decided what I have to do NOW and what can wait until later.

Here are the order of things in my mind:

Everyone is fed
Everyone is clean
School is done
Dishes are done
Laundry is folded

On the days I have a headache or I'm just too tired the laundry and dishes are neglected.

I try to remember that its not going to kill anyone if the dishes sit in the sink all night. LOL

My husband is great about that too and never complains or fusses about things left undone.

He understands me and knows I will do it all eventually.

Not sure if I could do this life with anyone else....He just knows me.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Finding Encouragement

When I feel discouraged and down about life I go to the Bible. I search for verses to lift my spirit and comfort my heart. 

"And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not." Galatians 6:9

There are days like this when I don't want to do anything and I get sad or lonely.

The feeling of isolation can be overwhelming at times. The devil really knows how to kick us while we are down. 

I have posted scripture all over our house in cabinets and on mirrors to encourage us.

Being the wife of a pastor is not easy and the pressures are stressful.

I know that when I call of the name of Jesus that satan has to leave me alone.

When we are weak He is strong.

"And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness, Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me."  2 Corinthians 12:9

So when we call on Him in our times of weakness He can reveal His strength and help us through our difficult situations.

Learning how to apply this to my daily life has been a very hard lesson.

There is no comfort in this world for a Christian. This is not my home.

I am longing to go to Heaven and be done with all the pain and heartaches of life.

"For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory."
2 Corinthians 4:17



Monday, October 30, 2017

Perspective Problems

Life is really 10%  of what happens to us and 90% how we react!

Perspective is VERY crucial in our lives. You can let struggles ruin you or you can learn from them.

I believe God allows us to go through things in our lives to teach us things. We learn how to trust Him more and rely on Him in times of need.

When someone says something we don't like we should not allow that to ruin our whole day.

People come into our lives as a blessin or a lesson :-)

Whatever we focus on will shape our perspective.


Image result for perspective pictures

Just because we don't always agree or see things the same as others that doesn't mean they are wrong.

Image result for perspective picture of 2 ladies

BE OPTIMISTIC!!!

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Breaking Up With Perfect

I have always wanted everything to be organized and clean. I like things to be in order and always presentable. BUT keeping up with that image is EXHAUSTING!!!

Sometimes I just want to be lazy and not care so much. ALWAYS looking presentable is HARD and I don't always feel the way I look.

I put on make up to try to cover up my flaws on the outside and cover my mood on the inside.

Why do we always feel the need to impress or perform to make others believe we are ok?

I just want to be comfortable in my own skin. Accepting my flaws and learning to be myself no matter who I am with.....

ITS HARD! BEING REAL IS SO RARE THESE DAYS!!!

I am breaking up with perfect. I AM DONE!

That is the best advice you can give any young woman....BE YOURSELF!!!

Don't try to impress or deceive. JUST BE NORMAL.....

Being real means being vulnerable.....letting people in and showing your true feelings.

Its so FREEING~BE {TRUE} YOURSELF!!!

Wednesday, October 04, 2017

Worthy & Wanted

Everyone wants to feel needed. We all have the desire to be appreciated and excepted.

When things happen in our family and we all want to help, it doesn't always work out.
So many of us want to lead but few want to follow.

I enjoy doing behind the scenes things to make it all come together nicely. I don't want to be front and center of attention. I don't want credit for anything just like to be helpful.

Some may not feel worthy to help or participate. Others may not feel wanted to join in.

But we ALL have the desire to be accepted. No one wants to be alone and never needed.

Community is a basic human need. We need connection with others for emotional and mental support. 

To be isolated from everyone and to never have eye contact or friendship is depressing.

So when we realize how lonely it can be and how it makes us feel we should consider that there are others out there who feel the same way.

Instead of being critical and competitive why don't we encourage each other.

Befriend mom at the library who looks exhausted with a toddler.

Start a conversation with a new mom in the line and the grocery store.

Everyone needs that human connection. The brain actually releases dopamine when we make eye contact with other. It really does make us feel important to see others care.

So make someone's day today and smile at the cashier. Talk to the lonely mother at the park. 

Don't every ASSUME that people are ok. Looks can be deceiving. I have battle some depression and one way I try to cover it up and cheer myself up is by putting on make up. It might look like I'm ok but inside I might be sad, lonely, depressed or worse. 

Be Kind to the Unkind people, they need it the MOST!


Friday, September 22, 2017

Creatures of Habit

We are all creatures of habit. Whether you realize it or not you probably do a lot of the same things every day. Most of us like our routines and don't like change. We drink the same things every day and we like to eat the same foods.

We watch the same shows and use the same products for years. Some may call it getting stuck in a rut. Others call it routine. Its really just perspective. I enjoy my routine and I feel like I work better with a schedule and a plan.

My children like routine and seem to do best with a schedule.

I don't like surprises. Knowing what to expect before it happens in comforting.

When you are raised a certain way and taught a specific religion most have a hard time forgetting what was instilled in them.

Ways of life and eating habits are formed at home as a child. I believe instead of saying obesity is hereditary maybe doctors should look at the lifestyle of the parents and grandparents.

It is our nature to stick with what we are taught. To not step outside the box. For the few that decide to go against the grain and blaze a new trail....they will never forget what they were taught as a child.

"Train up a child in the way he should go; and when he is old he will not depart from it."
Proverbs 22:6

Maybe that is why abusive parents raise children who abuse their children.
Maybe that is why obese parents raise obese children. (they are taught bad eating habits)

Instead of labeling everything as a disease or a disorder maybe we should consider it a lifestyle that was taught as a child.





Monday, September 18, 2017

Hurt People.....hurt people

When we change the way we look at people it will change the way we respond to them.

Have you ever been hurt by someone else? We all have at one point in our lives.

Everyone has a past and things we don't like to remember. It effects our personality and they way we behave today.

If we can put on glasses of compassion and pity instead of critical ones, we might be able to relate rather than react negatively.

As Christians we need to be aware of the suffering of others. Try to see past the sarcasm and fa├žade. They are obviously trying to cover up some deep pain and hurt.

Those around us often become the victims of our harsh tones and fits of rage.
We take out our frustrations on others instead of taking our burdens to the Lord and
LEAVING IT THERE.

Our emotional pain causes us to suspect wrong motives of other peoples actions and words.

It really all goes back to treat others the way you want to be treated.

"And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise."
Luke 6:31

Instead of taking our frustrations out on others we need to be nice and hope they will be nice in return. Pray for those who seem grouchy or snippy. Maybe they had a bad day or they were fighting with their spouse. Maybe they had a rough night or they are having cronic pain.

Just BE NICE!!! Our tone of voice makes a WORLD OF DIFFERENCE!!!

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Faith? or Foolish?

While walking through this life there are times we have to learn to have faith in God. 

Trusting He is going to provide for us. Some may think this is foolish to believe in something we cannot see. Others may call you crazy for waiting on God to come through.

I know that God gave us common sense to be safe and logical. We know what the Bible says about faith. 

There is a fine line between FAITH and FOOLISHNESS

Praying for His guidance during the difficult times and believing He is able to take care of you.

We all try to do things on our own. We want to fix things our way, right away.

Learning to wait on God and truly BELIEVING He is able 

“Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,” Ephesians 3:20

Running out of groceries? Can't pay your bills? Need new tires?

I have see God provide in ways we never expected several times over the years.

Pray before using a credit card maybe something is coming in the mail. Don't live above your means. God will not allow His children to go hungry.

Trust HIM and HE WILL PROVIDE!

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Does God Make Mistakes?

No He does not. Sometimes we may not be able to see the reason things happen. 

I believe God knows exactly what He is doing and everything happens only because He allows it. 

The lessons learned from each trial make us stronger and we learn to rely on Him more.

If our lives here on this earth were always perfect without troubles when would we ever call on Him for anything?

Why would there need to be a Heaven? If there wasn't any sickness or pain, sadness or death, life would be perfect and we would never pray to God or trust Him for anything.

So when God allows things in our lives we need to learn to trust that He has a purpose for it all.

He's trying to teach us a lesson. Maybe get our attention. Humility is truly the best teacher.

We cannot do everything on our own. We must be humble for God to use us.

1 Peter 5:6 - "Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may
exalt you in due time."
We are not promised an easy life. 
"These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." John 16:33

Sometimes God allows things to happen so we will acknowledge Him and his strength in our weakness.

James 4:6 - "But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble"

Friday, September 15, 2017

Fresh out of Amazing!

Have you ever met someone who does it all?!
They seem to have a it all together.
The looks, the brains, the perfect children....

It seems like every time you talk to them they are so busy with all their academic achievements and goals. Their children can do no wrong and maybe they have even said to you

"We are all over achievers"  I was in SHOCK when those words were spoken to my face.

No matter what you say or do some people just think they are better.

"Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall." Proverbs 16:18

And like I mentioned in my last post I am not competitive. So instead of try to do better and compete or try hard to live up to those standards I just want to crawl in a hole and hide.

Sometimes you just want to be yourself.....Well all the time really I just want to be comfortable in my own skin and I am while I am at home.

But the second we leave the house and step out into the world it seems to game is ON!!!

I am NOT amazing. My husband is not amazing. My children are not amazing.
JESUS IS AMAZING!

I have a hard time bragging on anyone. People will fail you. I make mistakes all the time.

If we put people up on pedestals and constantly praise them, when they do make mistakes they fall will be that much harder to accept.

So one of the many life lessons I have learned is not to put confidence in man.

"It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man." Psalm 118:8