Category: Parenting


So it’s been one week…one VERY LONG week, without carbs.

As I told you in my other post: Diet change, I am going low carb which is what I do normally when I’m watching my weight, but this time I’m following a much more strict low carb diet plan called Keto or The Ketogenic Diet

I have struggled a bit but over the last week I have lost 9 (it was 10 but somehow I gained 1 last night.  Bugger.) pounds!!  SHOCK OF THE DECADE, I TELL YOU!!  But what I noticed the most was my belly…

Nope, no sucking in here (I seriously wanted to!!) you got it all hanging out, sorry!  But what a nice little change in one week, huh?!!

I also started a Couch to 5k running program with my daughter Syd, which shouldn’t have been too hard for me…I have remained active a couple times a week at least.  However, the problem I have quite literally run into is that I am EXHAUSTED and barely able to do the running each day.  The Keto plan warns you of the “Keto-flu” and apparently I’ve got it.

Whew.  Not sure how to get over this, but have heard it will go away when my body begins to make new enzymes that burn fat for fuel instead of carbs, so looking forward to that.  🙂

Syd did a great job last week and her legs hurt a bit after the first day but otherwise she looked and felt fine.  She has a beautiful running cadence and looks very comfortable while she runs, and as the week progressed she moved up from her 4.5mph to 5mph, which concerns me a bit because come race day she is going to KICK MY BUTT!!

She was eager to get going today, starting week 2 of training:

Week 2:  Day 1, 2 & 3:
5 minute warm up
Alternating 90 second jog/2 minute walk for 20 minutes
5 minute cool down

Although the 10 year old MACHINE struggled a bit today (it was nice that she was actually human and not enjoying running for a change), she did GREAT!!  It seemed the added 30 seconds of running hit her pretty hard.  She even said “can’t we go back??”

My sweet girl on the DREADmill!!

But she got done, a few tears were shed just like during her Mama’s run this morning…so we’ll see how this goes.  She said she still wants to do the race, and understands (I think) that 3 miles is actually going to take a while to run so I hope this training program helps.

I haven’t changed her diet much except trying to help her make good food choices when she’s hungry.  She is not on the low carb diet that I am trying but she’s more aware of what she’s placing in her body to fuel it and she even lost a pound since last week!!

So as for me, I do miss carbs and have found that EVERYTHING has carbs in it!!  Whoa.  Plus, I need to learn to not watch Cake Boss because that just makes me want frosting.  But I have found that there is one thing that makes me very happy on this diet and I can have lots of it, because how many carbs does it have??  ZERO!!!

The best food in the world.  The “meat candy.”  The bomb:

Mmm … bacon.

“Everyone who competes in the games exercises self-control in all things. They then do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable.”   1 Corinthians 9:25

 

Related posts/articles:

Diet Change: no more carbs…

Everything About Keto   (http://www.reddit.com/r/keto)
Low Carb Food List Blog   (http://elowcarbfoodlist.org/)
The Ketogenic Diet   (http://www.theketogenicdiet.org/)
Linda’s Low Carb Menus & Recipes   (http://www.genaw.com/lowcarb/)

My daughter Sydney and I are now in training.  We are planning on running a 5k race in December called the Santa Hustle. When I register for a race, I am not ashamed to say that I am bribe motivated.  I choose the race and compete, typically, for what the finisher receives: a cute t-shirt or medal.

Cole’s medals…so far 🙂

I haven’t been extremely motivated recently until God worked through a few people to get my attention.

First a friend of mine, who I used to work out with about a year and a half ago, started really watching her food intake and lost a significant amount of weight (with no exercise)!!  It is very interesting how another person’s results can either motivate or discourage.  Lisa’s weight loss did both quite frankly.

You see, I’ve been exercising for several years now after losing a bunch of weight at the end of 2006, however after I checked the run-a-half-marathon box off my bucket list last October, I sort of…well, I sat down and am now experiencing the too-tight-wardrobe phenomenon because of it.

Second, I happened upon the Milwaukee Santa Hustle website and saw the sweet race shirts and gear they give out for the runners and knew I had to do it:

Running with a beard?  Oh I am IN, BABY!!

Third, another friend of mine told me that she is done being overweight, done being miserable and was starting the couch to 5k program in order to be ready for the Berbee Derby on Thanksgiving Day.  My sweet friend inspired me to stop feeling sorry for myself and get back out there.  I know I can do it and if she is motivated, I will get motivated.

Last, my daughter.  My second born daughter, Sydney, was very active as a little girl.  She loved running around, riding her bike, playing soccer and other sports and we found she was good at them.  I was thrilled that I would have another runner in the family when she got older, but what happened was I introduced her to my downfall, my addiction: CARBS.  She, like me, loves carbs, sweets and anything NOT healthy and also like me, she sat down.

I was a heavy 10, 11, 12+ year old who was quickly approaching obesity and now I see so much of myself in Syd.  She struggles fitting into her clothes, prefers to just sit around and is very self-conscious.  I get that, I know EXACTLY where she’s at and it’s a horrible place to be … especially when you’re facing those lovely middle school years and have an older sister who is tall, thin and beautiful.  Yup, I get it.

But I also know Syd; she is a leader, she does very well when a goal is set before her and can be quite headstrong and focused, so I showed her the Santa Hustle website.  She, like me, loved the idea and a new runner is born.

I meant to start training a couple weeks ago, but with birthdays and celebrations getting in the way… I know, nice excuse – cake and ice cream.  Syd and I have started (along with a new lo-carb eating plan – by the way, anyone know anything about the Keto diet?!!) the couch to 5k (Coolrunning C25K) running plan.

Measurements and “before” pictures have been taken…bacon has been purchased and we are on our way.

Syd did great her first day; she walked at a 3.5mph and ran at a 4.5mph!!

Week 1:  Day 1, 2 & 3:
5 minute warm up
Alternating 60 second jog/90 second walk for 20 minutes
5 minute cool down

We’ll see how she feels tomorrow and more importantly on Wednesday when her second run is scheduled!  🙂

Do any of you struggle with your weight or food?  Do you struggle with exercise or staying motivated?

I know there are women who feel the same way and I would love to hear from you!!

What has helped?  What do you struggle with?

What’s your excuse?!

“Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win.”   1 Corinthians 9:24

Please check out my other posts relating to my weight loss battles:
Lacking Motivation
My Motivation
Skinny Jeans
184. Now it’s personal.

Sydney got braces yesterday…and she wants you to know that they hurt.

A lot.

She’s ten years old and doesn’t have all her adult teeth in yet, so she has what the orthodontist calls “2×4’s”; braces on the front four teeth then bands on her back two molars for the orthodontic headgear.

Ouch.

I had to wear headgear when I went through those crazy-snaggle-tooth-ugly-middle-school years so as I watched them place the bands on her teeth and then eventually how to put the headgear on, oh it brought back memories.

YIKES! …but check out the Atari!! Mmmm-hmm, word.

Yup.  My teeth hurt just watching it!

After we left the orthodontist, I had Syd practice putting the headgear on.  She was struggling greatly with getting the tips placed into the tubes correctly and she became more and more frustrated.  She tried over and over and over again with zero success.

Her muscles stiffened, her grasp became more forceful and her eyes squinted as she tried desperately to make it work.  My stomach twisted in knots just willing her to get it, to no avail.  My heart broke for her knowing that she had to get this, she had to figure it out.

Syd was on the verge of tears when I finally told her to stop.  “Say a quick prayer,” I said. “Ask God to guide your hands.  Ask Him to help you get it in and to calm your nerves.”

She immediately closed her eyes.  I was hoping she would pray aloud but as she leaned back, her face loosened.  Her shoulders fell, her arms relaxed and her hands gently cradled the headgear.  Her face was at peace and beautiful.

After several minutes, her eyes sprung open and she lifted the headgear, placed it into her mouth and slid it right into place.

“Hear, O LORD, and be gracious to me; O LORD, be my helper.”   Psalm 30:10

“And the LORD will continually guide you…”   Isaiah 58:11a

God is amazing.  He works so mightily in our lives and we don’t even recognize it.

If He will work through a little girl struggling with something so insignificant as an orthodontic device, how much more will He do in your life?

“For this God is our God for ever and ever; he will be our guide even to the end.”   Psalm 48:14 (niv)

When the weight of this world knocks you down and you feel like you can’t go on, He will never leave your side.

I am so glad I have boys.

Boys love to show how strong, fast and brave they are.  They want to protect the world, rescue the damsel and save the day.  Their heart’s desire is to be the hero and I tell you, a girl and the world wouldn’t mind being rescued now and then.

But because I have these boys in my life and am also married to one, I have been forced to become very familiar with all the great superheroes and villains; their powers, their weaknesses, their costumes and their movies.

I have now seen The Avengers movie more than once and I tell you, it is an absolutely outstanding movie and one I will watch over and over and over again.

The Avengers is a superhero action movie featuring Thor, Iron Man, Hulk and Captain America, who incidentally have movies of their own, but you don’t necessarily have to know about these characters before you see this movie…although I’m sure you’ll want to after you do.

But what I love so much about not only this movie, but superheroes in general, is how God’s character is revealed through them.  The feelings we get and how we respond to watching these superheroes is exactly how we should feel about our amazing, wonderful, strong and powerful God and how He should be seen.

Let’s start with THOR  as Wikipedia describes him: In Norse mythology, Thor is a hammer-wielding god associated with thunder, lightning, storms, oak trees, strength, the protection of mankind, and also hallowing, healing, and fertility.

Clearly resemblant of our creator…

“When He utters His voice, there is a tumult of waters in the heavens, And He causes the clouds to ascend from the end of the earth; He makes lightning for the rain, And brings out the wind from His storehouses.”   Jeremiah 10:13

“He covers His hands with the lightning, And commands it to strike the mark.”   Job 36:32

“Also with moisture He loads the thick cloud; He disperses the cloud of His lightning. It changes direction, turning around by His guidance, That it may do whatever He commands it On the face of the inhabited earth.”   Job 37:11-12

And then there’s IRON MAN  as Wikipedia describes him: Iron Man possesses powered armor that gives him superhuman strength and durability, flight, and an array of weapons. The armor is invented and worn by Stark. Iron Man’s standard offensive weapons have always been the repulsor rays that are fired from the palms of his gauntlets.

Like Iron Man, God offers strength, power and unique protection and also possesses a trait portrayed best by Stark; God wants our eyes focused only upon Him…

“Ascribe strength to God; His majesty is over Israel And His strength is in the skies.”   Psalm 68:34

“Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.”   Ephesians 6:11

“You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.”   Deuteronomy 6:5

“I love those who love me; And those who diligently seek me will find me.”   Proverbs 8:17

“for you shall not worship any other god, for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God”   Exodus 34:14

Wikipedia describes the HULK as a gigantic, green, irradiated, mutated humanoid monster with incredible strength and an inability to control his rage. The Hulk is sometimes characterized as hyper-aggressive and brutal, other times as cunning, brilliant, and scheming. The Hulk possesses the potential for limitless physical strength depending directly on his emotional state, particularly his anger and is resistant to most forms of injury or damage.

Although the Hulk is typically cast as an anti-hero, our God portrays similar attributes; angry and wrathful, although rightly deserved…

“A jealous and avenging God is the LORD; The LORD is avenging and wrathful. The LORD takes vengeance on His adversaries, And He reserves wrath for His enemies.”   Nahum 1:2

“for the LORD your God in the midst of you is a jealous God; otherwise the anger of the LORD your God will be kindled against you, and He will wipe you off the face of the earth.”   Deuteronomy 6:15

“that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the LORD is mighty, so that you may fear the LORD your God forever.”   Joshua 4:24

And I just love the way he takes care of a false god in the movie and the only two words he utters…

 

 

Saving the best for last… my favorite, CAPTAIN AMERICA. As described by Wikipedia, Captain America has no superhuman powers, although as a result of the Super-Soldier Serum and “Vita-Ray” treatment, he is transformed from a frail young man into a “perfect” specimen of human development and conditioning. Captain America’s strength, endurance, agility, speed, reflexes, durability, and healing are at the zenith of natural human potential. Rogers’ body regularly replenishes the super-soldier serum; it does not wear off.

Not only is Captain America a beautiful picture of the power and strength God fills us with, the captain is the epitome of all America and humankind holds dear; truth, humility, justice, strength, love and hope and is the best portrayal of God’s true character.

“The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.”   Psalm 18:2

“… God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble.”   Psalm 46:1

“Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; Lovingkindness and truth go before You.”   Psalm 89:14

There is even one scene where the Black Widow is explaining to Captain America who Thor and Loki are, saying “they’re basically gods”  and it was in Captain America’s response that had me cheering…

 

 

I serve an amazing God.  The sacrifice He made for me is astounding, the love he has for me is astoning, and the fact that He made me and wants to use me is mind-boggling.

My God surely is an Avenger.

Plugged In movie review

“Open my eyes, that I may behold Wonderful things from Your law.”   Psalm 119:18

I took my daughter Sydney to the orthodontist the other day.  I picked her up from school and being just the two of us, she was able to snag the coveted passenger seat…and in a family of six, while not being the oldest child, that doesn’t happen often.

As we were driving, we passed some roadkill and Sydney asked, “what was that?!”

“What” I returned with surprise, “the roadkill?”

As if a light bulb went off in her head, she exclaimed “Ooooohhhh!  That’s what roadkill is!”

I couldn’t believe she had never seen roadkill!

In a state where deer, squirrels, and bunnies practically out number people and one or the other can be found squished on any given side street or highway, you’d think she’d have noticed.  But when I thought about it, vision can be very limited when you sit in the back of a van your entire life.

Because of the seats or other things blocking the view, it is easy to focus on yourself instead of what’s going on outside the van…and often you don’t even realize there is a bigger picture whizzing by because you aren’t able to see it clearly.

When we’re struggling, isn’t that exactly how we see life??  We focus on what is most affecting us; an upcoming exam or paper due, a fight we had with our significant other, the empty fridge or lint filled pockets, our broken or hurting body, job loss, difficult children, unhappy marriage…

The list could go on and on and one may even seem more trivial to us than another, but it’s not to the person in the middle of it.

Thankfully there is more than what concerns us, there is more going on than just our pain.  God has a reason and a plan for everything and although we can not see it, He is using our struggle for His glory and if we remain faithful, He will one day open our eyes, remove the things blocking our view and allow us to see.

“So the ransomed of the LORD will return And come with joyful shouting to Zion, And everlasting joy will be on their heads. They will obtain gladness and joy, And sorrow and sighing will flee away.”   Isaiah 51:11

SIDE NOTE: In God's great wisdom and perfect planning, He allowed Sydney an eye opening, up-close and personal example right in front of our house.  A poor bunny literally lost it's head... and has been just a wonderful illustration.
Will someone come get this thing?  Really...wonderful illustration no longer needed.

Job’s friends continue to call him wicked and accuse him of wrong doing, for why else would he be suffering the way he is??

It must be God’s punishment, they retort.

In Job 20, Zophar explains that justice will reign upon the wicked; in the end they will get what they deserve.  He explains it quite beautifully actually; a great encouragement and reminder to us, although a blunt warning and threat to Job that the bad guy gets what he deserves.

“Surely you know how it has been from of old, ever since man was placed on the earth, that the mirth of the wicked is brief, the joy of the godless lasts but a moment. Though his pride reaches to the heavens and his head touches the clouds, he will perish forever, like his own dung…”           Job 20:4-7 (niv)

I love how God totally has our back; on goes the battle gear and He’s ready to fight!

God puts the bad guy in his place from the inside out…

“Though evil is sweet in his mouth, though he hides it under his tongue, though he is loath to let it go and holds it in his mouth … He swallows down riches and vomits them up again; God casts them out of his belly.”   Job 20:12-13, 15

He pulls on His tactical gloves and draws back the bow…

“…God will send his burning anger against him and rain it upon him into his body. He will flee from an iron weapon; a bronze arrow will strike him through.”   Job 20:23-24

Isn’t it comforting to know that the bad guy doesn’t win?  They won’t get away with it.  Whatever they have done or are doing, they will pay.

“It is mine to avenge; I will repay. In due time their foot will slip; their day of disaster is near and their doom rushes upon them.”   Deuteronomy 32:35

The Bible even tells us that bad guy will get what he deserves!

God ‘will give to each person according to what he has done.'”   Romans 2:6 (niv)

But then why does it always seem like  ?

My daughter Sami tried out for the volleyball team a few weeks ago and there were something like 58 girls trying out.  As it was in the “old” days (I use that term very loosely because I in no way consider myself old), the most coveted team to get on is the “A” team.  If you made it on the “A” team, you would be set…but with only 18 spots available she didn’t even have a 50% chance… the under-par would go to the “B” team and in this case, “B” team 1 or 2!!

Great.

Sam hasn’t played a lot of volleyball.  She loves it and from what I’ve seen she’s, of course, AWESOME…

But the local private sport teams are terribly expensive so our kids often times aren’t able to participate, but I figure Sam has as good of chance as any to get on the “A” team right?

When I went to pick her up from tryouts, I waited anxiously.  She plodded over to the van; head down, shoulders slumped and I knew the outcome. She opened the door, plopped into the seat and huffed a discouraging sigh as she said “I didn’t make it.  All of the popular girls made it.”

“What makes them popular?” I asked and she quickly responded, “They’re the mean girls.  The pretty, rich, mean girls who get everything.”

You can practically hear Job’s incredulous gasp from chapter 21 as he echoes Sami…

“Why do the wicked live, reach old age, and grow mighty in power? Their houses are safe from fear, and no rod of God is upon them. They sing to the tambourine and the lyre and rejoice to the sound of the pipe.”    Job 21:7, 9, 11

It seems in this world that it’s the people who don’t care about others that get the furthest.  The ones who display greediness, selfishness, arrogance and conceit.  The ones who have lots of money and love to control and manipulate with a “me first” attitude.

But take heart, we don’t know God’s plans.  Why one girl gets on the “A” team and her equally talented twin sister doesn’t, is His doing.  Like Job says in verse 21:22, who are we to question?  Whether the bad guy gets it today, a month from now or not in this lifetime, he will eventually have to give an answer…

“For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.”   2 Corinthians 5:10

and one day God will ride in on a fiery steed to swoop us up, save the day and make everything right…

“Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the wine press of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords.”   Revelation 19:11, 15-16

Sami made the “B” team.  “B” team 1 or 2?  It doesn’t matter.  What does matter is that God surrounded her with all of her friends, all of the people who love her.

After all, who wants to be a stranger on the “A” team?!!

God knows what He’s doing.Proverbs 3:5

What can I say?  With four kids the first day of school is always a whirlwind!  This was the third year in a row that I had to leave before the kids left for school…so I didn’t get to do the Happy-Mother’s-Day!-the-kids-are-finally-gone happy dance.

Hmph.

But what a wonderful greeting when I got home from work!  Backpacks and papers strewn all over the house, shoes flung haphazardly teetering upon the couch and coffee table, the kids playing video games and practically grunting their hello-mom-I-missed-you-so-much-today greeting as I walked in.

Yup, feel the love.

I gathered all the school papers; news, calendars, lists and noticed Tristan, my 1st grader, had the most papers and stuff in his backpack.  It was astonishing how much stuff he came home with on his first day of school, and after I took out all that he had left in it from LAST YEAR, he didn’t actually have so much.

Just sayin’.

One of the papers Tristan brought home was titled Sneak & Share.  Each kid is to bring in a special item from home to share in class, but the item is to be brought in a bag so the kids won’t be able to see it.

“So what’s something special that you want to bring in?”  I asked.

He responded; “I want to share something I have with me always but it’s in my heart.”

“What’s that?”  I asked

“God…”

I was in awe.  I am so envious of that boldness.  I love that he doesn’t have to worry about what kids think.  In first grade they are accepting no matter what you look like, who your parents voted for, who your favorite football team is, or what you believe.  He could be himself and share his heart without worry of ridicule.

My heart flew.  Oh what a joy it is to know your child loves God and wants to share Him with others!

“…but what do I put in the bag?”  He asked.

I suggested a little Bible and he turned his nose up, then I said maybe a cross or something else and Tristan’s eyes lit up.  He ran over to a little popsicle cross he made at church a couple years ago that we had sitting on the thermostat on the wall.

He brought it over and plopped it in the bag with a huge grin on his face.

My heart could have burst I was so excited and proud of him.  “So what are you going to say?”  I asked, and he stood there for a moment the smile slowly falling from his face.  He was silent for quite a while then he said,

“I don’t want to bring this.  I want to bring a toy.”

My heart fell.  “Why?”  I asked puzzled.

Tears began streaming down Tristan’s cheeks as he struggled for a response.

“Why don’t you want to bring the cross?”  I prodded gently.

Tristan began sobbing and through his distorted, tear stained face he said,

“Because they won’t understand.”

Boy, do I see myself in him.

How many times do I back down?

How many times have I missed an opportunity to share God with others because of that EXACT thought?

“for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.”   2 Timothy 1:7

I have been in that exact position.  In fact, I wrote about it in my post:
Origin of Species ~Charles Darwin

But what I learned from that experience is precisely what Jax told Tristan;

When we want to share Him with others, that’s God’s whisper…
“tell them about Me.”

When we second guess and begin to question, that’s the evil one suggesting…
“they won’t understand.”

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.”   John 14:27

What has God asked you to do but you still believe the evil one’s lies…

“They won’t understand!”
“You aren’t good enough!”
“You don’t know enough!”

“…do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.”   Matthew 10:19-20 (niv)

Don’t wait another day!

God has given us the Good News, no…the BEST News!  Stand up!  Go out and share it!

In chapter 18 Bildad joins Eliphaz in attacking Job’s character.  They throw sticks; calling him wicked and deserved of his suffering.  Job retaliates tossing stones; telling them they are terrible comforters, terrible friends.

Job’s friends become defensive and angry.  Feelings are hurt adding more fuel to an already smoldering pile of rock and wood.

“Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me!”
Ooooh, I remember saying that phrase.

Even now it brings back memories of times when my feelings were hurt because of what somebody said, and to get back at them I would scream that phrase.

“Now the works of the flesh are evident: …strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy… I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.”   Galatians 5:19-21

The heat of my anger would boil up beginning at my toes running swiftly to my belly then neck and like a bottle shaken I would explode without warning, hurling insults and trying to find words that cut and crush.

Words hurt.  They stick much longer than a bruise and I’m afraid I’m queen of hurting people with my words…especially my family.

As a kid I threw stick and stone words haphazardly hoping they would hit their target.  It was usually back at the mean kid who told me I was fat or ugly.  They said something that cut and I wanted to cut them back, but it’s hard to hurt someone you don’t really know.

Friends and family are much easier targets.  We know the most about them and what makes them tick; their dreams, their desires, what they love, what they treasure…we know what will hurt them to the core and use it as ammunition.

As an adult; as a wife and mom, I am more able to reign in my toss.  I am able to, more subtly, spear those sticks and force those stones in with more precision.

Instead of hurling erratic insults, I catapult blame and guilt with amazing accuracy directly at the heart.  I lash out when I’m not being heard or when I feel unappreciated.  I want them to hurt the way I’m hurting.  I want to get back at them and so I throw sticks and stones at the people I love the most in this world!

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.”   Galatians 5:22-23

I have often said that I am not a fruit bearing tree.  I don’t display the beautiful fruit that I see in people around me.  I have thrown so many sticks and stones that my harvest is damaged.

I praise God that He’s not done with me yet.  He has placed amazing women in my life who do portray the fruit of the Spirit.  They exude the kindness, patience and gentleness that I lack, providing a beautiful picture of how a Godly wife, mother and friend is supposed to act.  I praise God for each of those precious gems in my life and for the example He has set before me to learn from.

“And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.”   Galatians 5:24-26

How’s your harvest?

“I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.”   John 15:5

 

 

Have you ever been a little perturbed over God’s plan for your life?

Sometimes, ok a lot of times, His desires for us don’t exactly mesh with our hopes for ourselves.

Please take a trip with me over to my friend Lee Merrill’s blog: Prayer Gifts as I guest post today and share a story of how God reminded me of His constant presence when He asked me to leave my babies and go back to work full-time!!

“You have multiplied, O LORD my God, your wondrous deeds and your thoughts toward us; none can compare with you! I will proclaim and tell of them, yet they are more than can be told.”   Psalm 40:5

 

Have you ever had a girl crush?

crush   noun   \ˈkrəsh\
Definition of CRUSH : an intense and usually passing infatuation <have a crush on someone>;
(Definition of INFATUATE : to inspire with a foolish or extravagant love or admiration)

You know, you’re a girl and you meet another girl and she’s gorgeous, friendly, funny, sweet, and totally in style.  You feel like you’ve known her your whole life; you have the same beliefs, same views on life, family and God and you totally “get” why her husband married her.

“Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear— but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.”   1 Peter 3:3-4

The Urban dictionary defines it as:

girl crush
feelings of admiration and adoration which a girl has for another girl, without wanting to shag said girl. a nonsexual attraction, usually based on veneration at some level.

These are the girls who are not related by blood and yet love us unconditionally.  They offer their shoulders freely for crying and their sleeves for blowing.  They act as a back board to bounce ideas off of and a coach to guide us.  They are a safe haven to run to in a storm and a gentle hand that picks us up when we slip.

This is a tribute to the girls in my life; those of you who make me want to act better, look better, love my husband and children better, portray Christ better, treat others better, and love my God better.

Thank you for the love and acceptance you have shown me, for the inspiration you have given me, for the wisdom you have shared with me and for the Godliness you have displayed for me.

I praise God for the girl crushes He has blessed me with, and although it is said that a crush is short lived, maybe these are the exception.

You know who you are… and I thank you.

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