We all have those proud mom moments when our children surprise us and make us look like the mom of the year. You know... that rare family dinner out where all of the kids display their best table manners with no whining or crying and they remember the magic words ... “please” and “thank you” and the waitress and the table of elderly ladies behind you congratulate you on how well-behaved your children are. And your chest swells with pride as your imagination plays a movie of the Mom’s Choice Awards and they call your name. Your children jump to their feet. Your husband plants a big one on your lips. The crowd goes wild. You walk to the stage and pull out your pre-written acceptance speech.
Then suddenly you feel a tugging at your arm.
The tugging continues.
You look to your left. You shake your head and blink your eyes a few times.
“I have to go potty, Mommy!”
You’re quickly brought back to reality and gladly take your little one’s hand in yours and head off to the potty.
Then ... there are those not so proud moments. You’re standing in line and you’re little two year old innocently declares, “That old man is ugly!”
Or ... like the moment my four year old, standing on the church steps with the most distigueshed, godly men at your conservative, Baptist church, grabs his daddy’s hand and says, “Come on daddy, let’s go to 7-11 and get us a beer!”
Yes. That actually happened. And, I must add ... I assure you, he and his daddy, never before (or after) “went to 7-11 to get themselves a beer.”
These are the moments that any mom deserves a respite! A get away. To rejuvinate and be encouraged. To be with other moms who understand and can sympathize. To learn tools to help them through those long, seemingly endless days (and nights) of motherhood. To learn to bask in the messes and enjoy each stage that one day will be a memory.
The PERFECT opportunity for such a respite is happening on July 31 - August 2, 2014 In JACKSONVILLVE, FLORIDA. It is the Southeast’s BETTER TOGETHER Conference for MOMS, MENTORS & MINISTRY LEADERS. With powerful keynote messages and over 40 workshops that will meet YOU right where you are. Laugh together. Cry together. Pray together. Learn to together.
WIN ONE FREE REGISTRATION BY SIMPLY LEAVING A COMMENT ($49 VALUE). *Note: Does not include transportation to Jacksonville, or lodging.
For more information and to register, click her http://www.themominitiative.com/conferences/2014-better-together-m-o-m-conference/
I will be conducting two workshops, and look forward to seeing what God has for me (AND YOU).
And ... the best part is ... if you register before December 1st, it’s ONLY $39*
*Hotel accommodations extra - BUT, special M.O.M. Conference rates are available. Don't delay! Bring your church. Your MOPS group. Your Bible study group. Or ... just yourself. I'll gladly be right there with you!
Recently, with a tear streaked face, I told the Lord, “Okay, here’s the thing God. I’m struggling right now … with trusting You.” I paused for a few minutes looked at my Bible that lay open on my lap and read a few verses. Then, in brokenness and sobbing, I cried, “Okay, it’s not that I don’t trust you, God. I do trust you. It's just that I don't trust that you will work things out the way I feel like I need them to be worked out!"
If God spoke audibly, I probably would have heard a resounding, holy “Well, DUH!”
That’s usually the way it is. If we’re honest, we simply want things to go our way. It’s like the viral You Tube video where the little boy asks his mom for a cookie. He says to his mommy, “I – I – like you, but I don’t like you all da time, I like you when you give me cookies though.” We trust God as long as He’s giving us all the cookies we want, but when the cookie jar dries up and things don’t go the way we would like, our faith is shaken and we begin to wonder if we can really trust God, or worse yet, if He's truly trustworthy.
For some of us, “trust” is a very hard verb to apply. Yet, it is the very thing that can reverse the effect of adversity in our lives. The adversity that the enemy meant to harm us is the very same adversity that God uses to bring about the greatest change in our lives. Joseph understood the effect of adversity by declaring to his brothers, “what you meant for evil, God meant for good.”
The reality is, the more we know God the more we can trust Him … even on those days of uncertainty and human frailty. And, the only way to get to know Him is to spend time with Him -- by seeking His face. How long has it been since you sat at His feet ... just you and God, basking in HIS presence … in expectation … longing to hear from Him? My favorite method of spending time with the Lord is, “reading until He speaks to me.” When I long to hear His voice, I turn to the books of Isaiah, Colossians, Romans, Hebrews or James and I read … until He speaks to me, and then I make a note of it. The truth is, the more you hear His voice, the more you’ll long to sit at His feet. And the more you sit at His feet, the more you’ll get to know Him. And the more you get to know Him, the more you’ll be able to trust Him even when things don’t turn out the way you think they should or hoped they would.
Author, Fay Lamb shares her personal story of how an oft quoted verse (and verse that is often used more as a cliche, than in its deepest meaning) transformed her life. Take just a few minutes and listen to some powerful perspective and truth.
You can find out more about Fay and her latest projects at the following websites: www.faylamb.com & www.writeintegritypress.com.
I had the incredible privilege to interview Stephanie Shott. It aired in Central Florida on the local Christian Radio station and will soon air in Pittsburgh, PA and Huntsville, AL. You will not soon forget Steph's story. Take a listen. I promise it will encourage you in unexpected ways. To learn more about Stephanie and her books, speaking and the M.O.M. Initiative, go to www.TheMomInitiative.com.
A note from Shelly ... If you read, grasp AND apply the truth in this Blog your life will be FOREVER CHANGED. Karen, shares from the depth of her heart and experience. Praying this speaks exactly to where you are today ...
I went to make my coffee this morning. My “half opened eyed, not ready for the world” self, reached for my Almond Joy coffee creamer. As I pulled it out of my fridge, the container seemed too light. It was empty! Someone had been taking my Almond Joy creamer for their own pleasures and returned the empty container to the fridge. I began to think of the many suspects that might be responsible. How dare they!
At that moment, I wasn’t feeling real happy and I didn’t want to throw up my hands and say “Oh God, thank you for not allowing there to be any almond joy creamer for me!” I wanted my coffee and I wanted it to be right. Now, that may seem like a small thing, but you all know what I’m talking about. Your day just doesn’t get started right without the perfect blend your palette craves! I wouldn’t say it put me in a bad mood, but I was not really joyful about it.
But, coffee is the least of my worries today. I have a crisis happening with a child that has become devastating to our family. We are walking with faith and strength from God, but I can’t say I’m at the point I’m thanking Him for this circumstance. I want to be there. I’m just not.
I know its Thanksgiving time and all, but my heart hurts. I want to cry. I want to scream. I do cry. I haven’t really screamed yet, so I might still give that a try. I know God hears me and I see Him working on the problem. I just feel my head has not caught up with my heart yet. My heart wants to thank Him, but I’m not really feeling spontaneous thanksgiving flowing from my spirit. Have you felt that way?
I’ll admit I’ve prayed thanks to Him for His answer, but I haven’t said thanks for having to make this awful journey. How do I get there? This is what I’ve been praying about today.
The answer is this...thankfulness is NOT about how you FEEL. It is a DECISION!
I DECIDE that I am going to honor His Word, follow it, and give Him THANKS for bringing the solution in His perfect timing. I speak out His praise! I worship Him! I express the desire of my heart and I say “THANK YOU, LORD” for what is now unseen but will be SEEN! Hebrews 11:1, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”
THANKFULNESS is not about emotion. It is about obedience and honor.
So this day, I can say, “Lord, my heart hurts, but I am thankful that you are my God and that You will meet my needs according to your riches and glory, not my own!”
If you are waiting on an answer and standing in faith that God is going to move, go ahead and give Him thanks by making the decision to do it and stop worrying about how you feel. His Word is true and He will not fail us! Let’s fool the enemy and thank Him IN SPITE of the circumstances. There is power in your thanksgiving! You can make the decision to be thankful today and it will have nothing to do with how you feel, but how you BELIEVE!
Treasuring You in His Love,
Karen is a Certified Life and Business Development Professional in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She is known as The Treasured Life Coach, as she counsels and coaches women to build a life they will treasure and thrive in. Karen is also the founder of The Treasured Woman Network, a Christian ministry dedicated to teaching women self-worth through Christ and the truth of God’s Word. Married to Ross, she is the mother to five young adults. www.karenjantzi.com.