Helping women realize their God-given calling and purpose as moms

Your Prayer

Your Prayer

“For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding.” Colossians 1:9 NIV

Do you sometimes go through the entire day and forget to pray.  Never underestimate the power of prayer.

I didn’t understand the power of prayer until I was in a life and death situation. One night when my daughter Rachel was 5 weeks old I was awakened to hear screaming in terror. I tried to get to her but I couldn’t find my way. I was disoriented, I couldn’t breath. Finally I pushed up my window and I realized that my house was on fire and I had now way of getting myself or my baby out of the house.

That was the night that I learned the power of prayer. My mom had been praying for me from Isaiah 43… that I would go through the fire and not be burned.

Don’t forget the power of prayer. As you pray to God He will fill you with knowledge of His will and all spiritual wisdom and understanding. Pray like your life depended on it.

 

	

Your Help

Your Help

Your Help, Your Hope of Glory

“…Christ in you, the hope of glory.” Colossians 1:27

Do you sometimes feel under-qualified as a mom? The great new is that there is a helper that who qualifies you and sets you apart for the task of mothering.

I need all the help I can get as a mom of seven children. It’s those days when I feel overwhelmed that I need to stop and remind myself, that I since I have made Jesus the Lord of my Life, I am not alone in parenting our children …. Christ lives in me (Colossians 1:27), and He has given me the ability to be fruitful in every good work. That includes being a mom!

If I stay connected to Jesus, (John 15) He will strengthen me with all might as I tackle the mundane assignments of life.  He has given me Himself so that I can walk in patience even with little boys that want to talk back rathe than obey right away.  He is the One who has qualified to be the best mom in the world for my child.

 

	

4 Ways to Overcome the Invisible Struggle that Every Mom Faces

4 Ways to Overcome the Invisible Struggle that Every Mom Faces

by Sue Detweiler

The Invisible Struggle

Every day there is an invisible struggle which can be intensely raging in the mind, and it will be seen on the outside through our emotions and actions. Galatians 5 describes the fight:

“So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves. The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions.”Galatians 5:16-17 NLT

What do you crave?

When we choose to satisfy the cravings of the flesh, we will sin. Most of the time when we think about sin, we think about stealing, lying, cheating, quarreling or committing an act of sexual impurity.  However, sin begins as a seed in the mind that takes root and grows into an attitude of jealousy, impurity, idolatry, hostility, and envy, among others. Sinful actions follow these attitudes.  Often the cravings of our souls come from lusting after legitimate needs and trying to fulfill them in illegitimate ways. The Spirit gives us desires that are opposite to what the flesh craves.

The Fruit of Anger

The craving to satisfy one’s own happiness can lead to anger and frustration. An emotion in itself is not good or bad, but how we choose to act upon it can be.  Anger is a normal human emotion that can fuel positive things. Jesus fashioned a whip in the temple and drove out the money-changers who were stealing from people and dishonoring God’s house. Martin Luther King focused the anger of African Americans into non-violent protests that led to overturning racist laws. Candy Lightner took her own devastation of her thirteen-year-old daughter being killed by a hit-and-run driver to found M.A.D.D. (Mothers Against Drunk Driving). These examples show that the human emotion of anger can be a righteous indignation that leads to positive change.

Most of the time, however, we become angry or frustrated when we do not get what we want. We have a goal that has been blocked. Anger out of control can become destructive. It can make you feel like you are at the mercy of a powerful emotion that is unpredictable and at times irrational. Anger can vary in intensity from mild irritation to intense feelings of rage. Anger is accompanied by physiological changes: heart rate and blood pressure go up. You also get an adrenaline rush, which is like gasoline to fuel our “fight or flight” response.

Uncontrolled anger can be devastating to a child. Anger tears down protective boundaries of self. Anger itself can be a weapon of control and manipulation. When a parent uses anger as a weapon, the children will grow in a fear-based environment rather than cultivating a culture of love and respect.

See your Reflection in the Mirror of God’s Word

Have you ever seen your own angry red face in the reflection of a mirror? I never knew I had anger issues until I was faced with the daunting task of potty-training a toddler. By the fourth mishap of the day I was pulling off her jeans with such force that I am sure I scared her. Then I screamed and caught sight of my face reflecting back at me in the mirror: ugly and red, distorted by rage, this was the face my daughter was seeing.

Seeing your reflection in the mirror of God’s Word brings truth of your own need to change. It is easy to point your finger and look at other people who have out of control anger. It is another thing to honestly assess how you personally deal with anger. Whether you express, suppress, or calm your anger is your choice, but anger is not an emotion you can ignore. Unexpressed anger can come out in passive aggressive ways, such as cynical comments, cutting looks, critical judgments, which contribute to broken relationships.

Our children can receive the brunt of our unexpressed anger. We may be angry at a situation at work and seem perfectly calm there, but come home and make life miserable for everyone we encounter. Children pick up on our hostility and blame themselves for it. An angry mother is the source of much pain for her children.

Here are 4 ways to overcome this invisible struggle that every mom faces:

1. Reflect

Jesus gave His followers a pattern to overcome temptation in the prayer that we often call the Lord’s prayer. In this prayer that is prayed across the globe as a model for daily prayer we find what we need to overcome the enemy on a daily basis.

“‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
And forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.” (Matthew 6:9-13)

Just by setting aside in your day to read the Bible and reflect on God’s ways will change everything. When you understand that your role as a mom is bringing God’s kingdom into your very home. His will is being done as you follow Him and teach your kids about His word. Whenever you reflect on what His word says and what His will is you will know how to follow Him. As you pause to ponder, listen and reflect, your questions will be answered and you will receive wisdom that comes from heaven above.

2 Trust

You can trust that God will give you your daily bread as you seek Him. Your daily bread is not just a crusty loaf, it is a metaphor for everything that you need. Anytime you feel overwhelmed in the moment, focus on the fact that God will give you everything you need in the moment.

Earlier I told the story of how I lost my temper while I was potty training my oldest daughter. She is now 23, engaged to be married, and a nanny to 2 twins. The other day she was telling me how she feeds two newborn babies at once and I sat there amazed. Wow – how does she have the patience for this?  The grace to care for newborn twins comes from God.

You can trust God. The things that seem so difficult in the moment are really simple to the God of the universe. You just get to put your tiny hand into His. Like a child look into His eyes and trust Him to show you how to parent even as He parents you.

3. Prepare

Jesus said, “And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the Evil One.” In this prayer, He was teaching us to prepare for battle. Do mom’s do warfare? YES! Every single day you battle against the forces of hell who understands better than you do how you are on the frontlines. You are teaching the next generation how to love God and how to live in the world.

So everyday prepare for the battle. Ask God to lead you in His ways and to reveal the hidden traps. Get dressed in His whole armor (Ephesians 6) and His apron of humility. Let your heart be filled with the fruit of His love which covers a multitude of sins.

Every mom faces this same battle… you can overcome in Him. 

4. Believe

Let your mind and heart hope and believe in Him. Greater things are yet to come and greater things are yet to be done in your home. As you triumph over dishes, laundry, and potty training you are being trained to change the world through the power of God’s love. “The Hand That Rocks The Cradle Is The Hand That Rules The World” is a poem by William Ross Wallace. He praises moms for being world-changers and national-influencers.

Believe that God is able to use you to change history as you fully embrace the task of pouring into the next generation. Let your mind think thoughts of peaceful confidence as you enjoy your daily life as a mom. Reflect, Trust, Prepare and Believe – 4 ways to overcome the invisible struggle that every mom faces.

 

2 Keys to Unlocking Your Potential as a Mom

2 Keys to Unlocking Your Potential as a Mom

by Sue Detweiler

If being a mom were as simple as doing the right task at the right time in the right way, you would have self-help books that would make you an expert. The hard thing about being a mom is that it is not so much about what you do, but it is more about who you are.

Maya Angelou’s famous quote applies to moms, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” This is true of how our children will look back at how we raised them.  If you and I are to be moms that truly connect with the heart of our child, we need to look at those wounded places in our own hearts that imprison us.

Raw Moments as a Mom

If you were to write about your most raw moment as a mom, what would you talk about? Most of the time we do not talk about our mistakes. We have learned if we keep these insecurities under lock and key, we will be more respected.  The problem is this lock and key also imprisons you and I to our flesh rather than granting us freedom in Christ.

Behind Bars

Unresolved issues can put us behind bars. A divorce, a miscarriage, abuse, addiction, disappointment are things that can imprison us in our past. Sometimes we shake the bars trying to get out, other times we just slump down in a chair giving up, believing the lie that we will never change.

How many times do we become trapped behind bars, unable to make progress: Ensnared in emotional jails, confined by financial struggles, or imprisoned in lifeless existence? Sadly, each of us have keys hanging around our necks, temporarily hidden from view, but available to each one.

The Key of Faith

The key of faith in God will unlock the hidden realities of heaven on earth. Jesus died for our sins, not so that we could be miserable until He came again, but so we could live the life of an overcomer. When you put faith in God, mountains move and prison doors unlock.

Martin Luther King Jr. said “Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.” Your faith is in God not in yourself. The key of faith will unlock future possibilities. In order for you to be the best mom in the world for your child. you must be a woman of faith.

The Key of Obedience

To obey God is to make Him the highest authority in our lives. Obedience is to completely follow His Word, His will, in His way. We chose to follow because of our love for Him. We surrender or own short-term preferences, for His eternal promises.

We are called to obey, right away, without delay. Mother Teresa said “Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.” It is in our daily walk of obeying God in the small places in our lives that we apply this key to be truly free.

When we put the keys of faith and obedience in the lock of our jail, the very bars that imprisoned us will become rails of a bridge of breakthrough. This bridge will carry us to a new place of freedom, but it will also help our children as they follow along the freedom path.

Teaching Our Children Faith and Obedience

The best way for you to teach your children about faith is to be faithful to God Himself, to His word, to His will, and to walk in His ways. The best way to teach your children obedience, is for you to have an obedient heart towards God.

Yes, what you say and what you do as a mom is important. But the most important thing is who you are.

 

 

4 Ways to let the Hot Air OUT of your Anger

4 Ways to let the Hot Air OUT of your Anger

by Sue Detweiler

It’s the fourth of July and you want the fireworks that you experience as a family to be in the sky, not an explosion of anger in your home. To celebrate your freedom in Christ, lets talk about 4 steps to let some of the hot air out of your anger.

1. Laugh

I don’t know about you, but I need a dose of humor in order to be a good mom. It’s one of the things that as I look back at my mistakes as a parent, I wish I would have laughed more at the toddler mishaps. Experts say “a well-developed sense of humor can boost a person’s immune system, contribute to a more optimistic outlook on life, and increase self-esteem.”*

In tense situations laughter is good medicine – so laugh! Laugh at yourself and how intense you are. If you are too upset to laugh, take a break. Watch a fun movie to get your mind off the problem. Let the toxicity of the moment evaporate so that you are able to see the truth in the situation rather than the exaggerated details of your mind.

Bill Cosby said, “Through humor, you can soften some of the worst blows that life delivers. And once you find laughter, no matter how painful your situation might be, you can survive it. ”

2. Listen

When I become angry, usually it is a red flag that I am thinking negative thoughts that lead to irrational feelings. Usually I am putting myself and my goals before others. It’s in those moments that if I can silence myself and listen to God and listen to the needs of others. Even a cranky toddler can be communicating that they are tired and need a nap or hungry and need a snack. If I truly stop and listen I am more likely to respond in love rather than anger.

Become a good listener not only of words, but be a discerner of the deeper issues of the heart. Listen to find out what is really happening in the moment. Sometimes the words a person speaks is just camouflage for what they are feeling in the moment. Listen to the needs of others not just your own.

3. Learn

Part of walking with God is being a life-long learner of His ways. If we form a habit of regularly becoming irritable and angry even at the smallest issues with our families, we need to seek to learn a different way. We won’t learn if we continue to make excuses that “I’m a redhead and redheads get angry.” Rather, when we admit that we are wrong, confess our sins to another, we are on the path of learning a new way.

As a young mom when I was learning how to replace my anger with God’s love I would sit myself in time out. The girls were even cute enough to “pray for mommy.” I also began to talk about my anger as sin and to confess it openly to my husband, often in front of the children. I wanted them to know that it was not okay for me to respond in anger. Bringing my own anger into the light really helped me to get free.

4. Love

A mother’s love is unconditional. A mother’s love should not be based on whether or not your child followed all the rules. A mother’s love, like God’s love, sees the best in a child. Calls out the potential rather than criticizes their lack. A mother is able to draw out and encourage. A mother’s love is only able to heal the bruises and bumps of the world if it is completely anchored in God’s love.

Nothing is impossible for a mom who holds the world of her newborn baby in her hands. Love pushes over every wall of rejection and every fortress of rebellion.  Love conquers all.

As you laugh, listen, learn and love you will grow closer to God as you grow closer to your family. The anger of the moment will evaporate when you concentrate on walking in God’s fruit of love.

*http://kidshealth.org/parent/growth/learning/funny_toddlers.html

Every Mom Can Overcome Negative Thoughts and Irrational Feelings

Every Mom Can Overcome Negative Thoughts and Irrational Feelings

Have you every wish that you could push a reprogram button at the back of your head that would immediately erase every negative thought, calm every irrational feeling and free you from every sin pattern in your life?  Instead every mom that I know has unresolved issues that pop up at the most inconvenient times. If you thought you were the only one that still struggles you can rest assured that you are a part of a big company of people – called the human race.

The Day I realized I had an anger issue… Fall 1993

Tormenting thoughts battled in my mind as I drove to Saturday night worship.

“I’m the worst mom in the world…

“I can’t believe I blew it again…

“I hate life…

My knuckles were white as I gripped the steering wheel tightly. Strapped in back were two carseats. Tears streamed down my face and were reflected in the eyes of my three year old and one year old. Another baby girl was growing inside my belly and was strapped in by my seatbelt.

The conversation continued in my brain.

“What am I thinking- trying to be a mother…

“They don’t deserve this..

“God – ARE YOU THERE?’

The last question seemed to bounce off the soiled ceiling of my minivan. Somehow I maneuvered into a parking place and carried the car seat and too tightly squeezed the fingers of my oldest daughter as we walked into the church. After signing them in childcare, I breathed a sigh of relief.

I don’t think I heard the sermon that night. I just remembered communion. That is when I really began to sob as my screaming tirades flashed back in my mind.  Now my hands shook as I held a communion cup.

The fight intensified in my mind.

“Who do you think you are?

“You hypocrite…”

“You will never change…”

This last thought was interrupted by the pastor speaking from the pulpit. “I believe there are some of you who have believed a lie that you can’t change. The truth is that Jesus blood has paid the price for your sin and He has delivered you out of darkness. You are free – You just need to believe it, receive it, and act on it.”

It sounded so simple, so why was I so bound? The turmoil within me began to bubble up then calm as though the toxic thoughts had finally been neutralized by the truth of God’s word.

A new phrase began to take shape in my mind. It was an entirely different thought. In fact, it felt like a whisper from heaven that I was finally listening to.

“You are the best mom in the world for your children….”

“You have been called and chosen for the task of being a mom…”

“I will help you become the best mom for them…

Hope began to fill the deepest recess of my soul. For so long I had floundered under the  fog of the enemies torment that these words were like beams of sunshine bringing a multifaceted rainbow of His promise. His personal promise TO ME!

HE HEARD MY CRIES and His transformation is what has fueled my hope to be able to help other moms who have their own moments of hidden desperation. I hope to hear from you – I would love to hear your stories of pain, triumph and trivia of being a mom. Check back here tomorrow when I talk about some ways to replace your anger with His love.

The Purpose of it all!

The Purpose of it all!

by Kacey Randolph

There it was, staring back at me. My own name with the curser blinking beside it. Staring at me. I hadn’t had to send a “formal” email in quite some time, in fact I can’t remember the last time I had to and for some reason seeing my name on the screen was weird. What was even MORE weird was that is was weird! 

I’m called any variation of Mom all day long – Mom, Mommy, Mama. When my husband gets home its “babe.” My friends call and its straight into conversation because we all know time on the phone is limited when kids are running through the house. The more the curser blinked beside my name the more I felt God speaking to my heart. God lovingly revealed to me that I was compartmentalizing my life. I am a Child of God. I am a Wife. I am a Mom. I am a Friend. I am Kacey.

As women we carry a multitude of roles that require much of us. While my relationship with the Lord is strong, it takes relying on His strength to maintain all of the roles and relationships in my life. It takes putting all of my faith in God to help me maintain all that I am called to do within my family, with my friends, and within my God given purpose. It can be overwhelming at times and I find myself becoming task oriented and focused on getting things checked off of a list. While it is good to be productive, we have to put it all in perspective and know the purpose of it all.

Video: A Mother’s Prayer

Video: A Mother’s Prayer

Sue Detweiler, Founder of ChristianMomTalk.com, shares how a mother’s prayer can change a nation. Using the biblical story of Hannah in 1 Samuel 1, Sue shares how God answers the desperate petition of a mother who surrenders her hearts desire to God. As a mother persists and perseveres in prayer, God hears her petition and answers her prayers in accordance with His will. Surrender your heart completely to God, He will hear your prayer.

Overcoming Postpartum Depression

Overcoming Postpartum Depression

by Christa Ashworth

I was really looking forward to being a mom.  I had my first baby when I was 27 years old, and I felt like I could conquer the world.  I had been able to do almost everything I had put my mind to up until this point in my life, so when I experienced struggle after struggle with my newborn, I started to fall apart.  A few weeks after my daughter was born, I could feel myself slipping into some cloud of darkness.  I was experiencing all the new mom things like not sleeping, not showering and not having a moment to call my own – but also an underweight infant who had breastfeeding problems.  And my hormones must have been in total revolt against me.  I wanted to curl up into a ball on my bathroom floor and never see the world again.