Faith

Because He first loved us

Sweating the Small Stuff

Coffee House Mom

It’s listening to my son make super hero noises in the bathroom while he is brushing his teeth, the 6.2 minutes when all three children are reading one book together (in peace), watching my sons become the cutest boy band ever with their perfect rhythm, and air guitars, swaying and singing in front of the fireplace.

It’s also the spilled supper plate, the dropped (and broken) pitcher, the kid who breaks free from your hand and runs into the parking lot.

The big things, the tragedies, the successes may, in part, define us and our character in big ways. But we live those out in the minutes and hours of the day and the days of the week. Our choices, our habits, our work for His glory.

The daily grind is how we live our lives.

It’s the encouragement and advice and instructions of the Proverbs: sometimes, seemingly small stuff. All added up, though, the sum is great, but the sum hasn’t come yet. While we’re alive, we are still working on the parts: our attitude, how we love our families, how we raise our children.

Perhaps not-so-small stuff after all. Don’t sweat too much. Don’t take every moment too seriously, Laugh at yourself.

But a little perspiration is in order. Live obediently. Give weaknesses to Him. Seek joy in the little, and heed His words to work hard and plan well and build up a house and extend kind hands to others.

That will get you sweating, just enough.

Small is the word todayJoin Lisa-Jo Baker and Five Minute Friday.

Choosing to See the Goodness of the Lord

Rhonda Franz, coffee house mom

Psalm 27:13 I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. (NIV)

Such a glorious statement, but have you read the whole chapter? David has been fearful. His enemies are surrounding him.

After pleading and lamenting, he is now calling out to the Lord, speaking about his head being lifted up and staying confident and claiming the Lord as the stronghold of his life.

No army is after me (except for those who prowl with The Enemy), but this I am reminded of in battles and circumstances  - those things that sap my energy, wear on my spirit, feed my weaknesses of anxiety and discontent, and add to the pit in my stomach.

  • Land of the living:  My battery dies in the car ride line at school
  • Goodness of the Lord: the man behind me gave me a jump start, my dad taught me to keep jumper cables in my car, my battery was still under warranty and our mechanic replaced it.
  • Land of the living: I lock my keys in the car at soccer practice while my husband is out of town.
  • Goodness of the Lord: I have the $$ to pay the locksmith, there is such a thing as a locksmith.
  • Land of the living: My child has had a day of meltdowns, and it is all I can do not to have one myself. Eventually, I fail.
  • Goodness of the Lord: There is time in the day left to love on him, choose to see him for the blessing he is, forgiveness is real and immediate from the Lord.
  • Land of the living: Circumstances weigh heavy, emotions run rampant, shame is present, disappointments are overwhelming, and relationships are in peril.
  • Goodness of the Lord: The sun is shining, His mercies are new every morning (Lamentations 3:23), He is in control, even when I’m not, especially when I’m not.

In these moments, I am reminded to stop and remember the Stronghold. Find that to be thankful for. Choose to see the goodness of the Lord.

Maybe an army is after you. It could be fear or anger or shame or just rotten things going on. It could be a lousy marriage relationship or the loss of a job.

What are your Land of the Living moments? How do you choose to remember and meditate God’s goodness?

The beautiful picture of Scripture courtesy of Billy Alexander on stock.xchng

Five Minute Friday: Fight

Coffee House Mom

Fights over superheroes, arguments about toy cars and planes, wrestling matches that started out as fun, but turned into something not-so-fun after someone’s cheek was pinched or one boy’s eye took a hit from another boy’s elbow: these are the conflicts that rise to mind.

It’s a new year. Maybe the rivalry will calm down (a momma can hope).

Besides, that momma also has to gets to fight. And not all fighting is bad.

I’ll be fighting in 2014. Fighting to help a child with a strong will and a lively spirit who gets thrills from doing just exactly the opposite what he shouldn’t, and whose emotions run rampant unexpectedly and often mysteriously.

I’ll be fighting to keep a gracious attitude in the midst of a day, a normal day with spills and stains and hurts and tears and yells and sometimes even screams.

I’ll be fighting the good fight of a Lord’s servant, one who loves Him, but with a heart not always full of faith.

I’ll be fighting for a marriage, a home, one (maybe two) pairs of matched-up socks, an uncluttered kitchen drawer, and an organized house.

What’s your good fight in 2014? Join Lisa-Jo Baker and Five Minute Friday.

 

 

 

 

Yes, Sometimes It Takes a Village (Also Known as the Body of Christ)

it takes a village, the body of Christ, coffee house mom

It was the first night of our church’s VBS (Vacation Bible School).

The VBS that is in the evening, and stretches past my children’s bedtime, making each hot summer day a really long one.

My husband, of course, was assigned to overnight trips each day that week  Lots of hopes opportunity for grace here.

The very cool thing is, our church throws in a meal. Every day of VBS. We feed the workers, the kids, the community, anyone who attends.

Feed the hungry.

What’s that you say? Someone is feeding my children? All week long. Oh, we’re there. We are soooooo there. So on Monday evening, we came, we ate, we fellowshipped. And then Boy Two burned his leg on a motorcycle in the parking lot. He screams, and it echoes through the dining area. You know how burns are.

I hauled him into the church kitchen, because that is where you take children who have an injury – where the food is being prepared. One person grabbed a towel, and stuffed ice in it. Another person grabbed the first aid kid, and a nurse who attends our church fetched some burn cream.it takes a village, the body of Christ, coffee house mom

Love.

Two girls ran over, their mobile phones readied with a game of Pac Man. Someone showed up with a popsicle. Three of us restrained my son while we applied cream to his knee and kept him from rubbing it off. Another mom handed him a sweet tart-looking chewable pill of children’s acetaminophen, which he popped in his mouth without hesitation (I’ve long been opposed to medicine that looks like candy. Not so much anymore).

Joy.

A family swooped up my toddler, who was trying to escape to the great outdoors, sat him down, and fed him a second supper.

Helping hands. Swift feet. The hands and feet of Jesus.it takes a village, the body of Christ, coffee house mom

Someone else made sure my 7 year old got with his group to start out the night.

My neighbor, with whom we attend church, offered to take my injured child home (so I could stay and work), or stay and take my seven-year old home so he could finish out his first night.

Peace. Patience. Kindness.

Turns out, all the attention and distractions and sugar-loading did it. He was saved from himself by a handful of people who cared for a child and helped out a mom. I was able to stay at VBS and work. He and his brothers had a great night.

If one part rejoices, every part rejoices with it.

This whole injury ordeal lasted not 20 minutes, but it was 20 minutes of significance for a mom who needed the quick-thinking hands of others, needed someone to catch her two-year old, and help her absorb the screams and the wails and the cries.

If one part suffers, every part suffers with it.

We had a great, albeit tiring, week. Every single evening with our church family, someone helped me in some way with my kids.

Knowing this child, it’s likely he’ll have learned nothing from his painful experience, and burn himself on a motorcycle again tomorrow.

If so, the village has me covered.

Scriptures: 1 Corinthians 12, Galatians 5, Matthew 25

stock.xchng photos by jynmeyer and gokoroko