Friday, April 23, 2010


Written April 23rd
....Coming home with a new child or being a new bride ~~ these roles can put you in a season of vulnerability. I do remember questioning my mom about getting from raising a newborn to having such a loving relationship with her and getting to know God as I grew up. How was I going to repeat that experience with Alison, our first born? It would be easy to have an ABC plan and it also would be easy to give into the fear that is quick to come.

The years that our girls have dated and married (Hannah's sweet day is quickly approaching) have helped me see our marriage as new when we actually have been married over 30 years. It is helpful to see how the guys have pursued them - flowers, notes of endearment, laughing. Watching them has reminded me what we can lose or forget along the way. Fear can enter in and we become vulnerable and give up on this relationship that can at times be so hard.

This week, I heard that Do Not Be Afraid is the most frequent command in the Bible. I need to go check that out on Bible Gateway. The next chapter in Sacred Parenting sites verse after verse about fear and what God wants for us as parents. Satan is constantly trying to convince us to give in to fear and vulnerability, which can lead to robbing our children of experiences needed for their growth. The author reminds us, "Courage doesn't always get rewarded with success...through sacred parenting we learn to act courageously, regardless of how afraid we may feel. And when we step out in faith, we allow God to shape our souls in ways that will develop us far beyond the parenting part of our lives."

I am finally finishing up this post today, May 23rd. As you know much has been happening in our lives even when I wrote this back in April. I did not finish the book, Sacred Parenting before Alison and Justin left to return to Lima, so let me know if you have purchased it and are reading it and what you think.

Many pictures will follow about our wonderful time with Alison/Justin and the grandkids and also of the great experience of Hannah and Jason's covenant with God and one another. Blessings to all!!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Listening and JOY

A couple of weeks ago I experienced a time of more intense listening. The idea of listening as a spiritual discipline came to mind. I found it very hard to hold back, I so enjoy talking and I certainly have to pray against pride. Listening is fun, though, when it is intentional. I spend time with one of our precious girls at Hope and we had a time of reading the Bible and praying together. Our reading time was mainly reading and letting her comment - I told her I only wanted to listen. She is very wise for her age and I totally loved some of her comments. When we prayed we enjoyed just some silence. We were sitting at Jacob's Dream on ACU campus and we could hear the sound of the water and the birds. It was wonderful and a great memory we now share. The same week I read the next chapter in Sacred Parenting entitled Seizing Heaven - How Raising Children Teaches us to Listen to God. Not an accident that something on listening came my way. I love the way God puts experiences together for us.

Verses shared in this chapter include:
  • Listen and understand. (Matthew 15:10)
  • He who has ears to hear, let him hear. (Mark 4:9)
  • Again Jesus called the crowd to him and said, ‘Listen to me, everyone and understand this.’(Mark 7:14)
  • Consider carefully how you listen. (Luke 8:18)
  • Listen carefully to what I am about to tell you, (Luke 9:44)
  • My sheep listen to my voice. (John 10:27)

    Gary L. Thomas says, "Listening to God provides the true test of our humility. Humble people listen; prideful people never seem to have the time to wait on God."

    The next chapter is on JOY. It taught a lesson that I also learned from Calm My Anxious Heart. Think about the two most often requests you have for your children -- Protect them and Change them .... is that true in your prayer life? Well, Gary Thomas suggest a third request. Prayers of thankfulness. They have a way of putting life in perspective. Praying for only protection and change has the emphasis on fear and their weakness. As we put into practice thanking God for His work in their lives, thanking Him for the progress they are making, thanking Him for who our children are (their strengths) then the mind set is very different.

    This whole chapter is about JOY and how God wants us to not be so serious. I love the sense of humor Daniel has added to our family. I'm way to serious and need too read the verses about JOY more often!!