Thoughts From the Mom Who Needs Grace

Thoughts From the Mom Who Needs Grace

I am a girl who loves to sit with a cup of coffee and daydream. I am most passionate about Jesus, my family, and family ministry. My husband and I live in Oklahoma with our two precious daughters. I spend my days with my girls, discovering and growing alongside them! You can usually find us either in our sunroom, the park, or taking long walks through Target. :)
Kristin J
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Thoughts from the Mom Who Needs Grace

It was a normal day at home with my girls. Things were getting a little chaotic and needed to change. Instead of stomping my foot and insisting a different mood, I choose to cultivate one. So I ask, “Would you girls like to help me bake some muffins?”

With holiday tunes humming, and the afternoon light shinning down on our kitchen counter we made cranberry orange muffins.

You pour the scoop, sister goes next. Will you help me stir? Keep the whisk in the bowl!”

We cheerfully made our muffins and I sent the girls on their way while I cleaned things up. 

“It’s so nice when I take time to draw close to my girls instead of griping at them,

I thought to myself.

God’s Grace in Our Chaos

When Adam and Eve were hiding after their sin, God came to them. When his people were miserably missing the point of their relationship with God, God didn’t stomp his foot, shouting “You’d better get your act together or you’re getting a spanking.” No, he came down to Earth through Christ, and he poured out unstoppable love. He draws us to him through the chaos. 

Psalm 18:16-19 is one of my favorite passages.

“He reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters. He rescued me from my powerful enemy, from my foes, who were too strong for me. They confronted me in the day of my disaster, but the Lord was my support. He brought me out into a spacious place; he rescued me because he delighted in me.” 

Our Families Need Grace

As I was pondering these things, a blog post was starting to form in my mind. Then suddenly my attention shifted to the cries I heard from the other room.

One of my daughters had intentionally hurt the other one. With grinding teeth, I sent one to her room, and fetched an ice pack for the other. I felt tears well up in my own eyes as I cradled my girl. 

“Who am I to write about parenting? I’m such a failure,” I thought.

A little later I shared my experience with a sweet friend. She reminded me about a lot of good things including the enemy’s tricks — the way he derails us from the good we want to do. She told me to write the post anyway.

So here I am. 

The Grace We All Need

It just so happened that my advent study on this particular day was about Rahab. In Joshua 2, we can read about a prostitute in Jericho who hid two Jewish spies and helped them exit the city safely.

She was not a woman of God, but she choose to protect these men, and that’s not all. She choose to believe in God. She and her family are then saved, and as we know she became the great-grandmother to King David, the family line leading to Jesus. Her brave actions inducted her into what many consider the “Hall of Faith”.

“By faith the prostitute Rahab, because she welcomed the spies, was not killed with those who were disobedient.”

Hebrews 11:31

Who was Rahab to be used in such a way? 

Ann Voskamp’s words about Rahab in her book, “The Greatest Gift” left an imprint on my heart that day. 

Rahab, in a godless place with a godless past, believes fully- and so lives fully. She’s steps out not in competence but in faith… Great faith is the greatest equalizer, the greatest eraser, and the greatest definer… No personal choice that muddies your life can ever trump the divine choice to wash your life clean. No situation is more hopeless than your Savior is graceful.” 

Grace Doesn’t Compare

I don’t need to compare myself to others, feeling greater or less than. We are all in desperate need of God’s grace. 

Of course, the good news isn’t that we are all sinners. The good news is that we have a way out. 

“Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”  

Acts 2:38

Praise Him! 

So I reminded myself once again, that I don’t have to be perfect. He is the perfect one. I am the one saved by his grace. My girls won’t be perfect either. They need his grace too. 

Who am I?

I am the one to whom God entrusted these two sweet babes. I am the one who can be the giver of his grace. It may get chaotic, but I can go to them still. I can find them, and pour out my love over them. 

So once the “talkings” were had, the consequences laid out, and the tears wiped away, I gathered them close. We curled on the couch a read some stories.

Our favorite, The Little Drummer Boy, reminded us that even when we feel we have little to give we can always offer praise. With holiday music humming in the background, and the glowing of the tree shining on us, I knew that I was giving my best to him in that moment. 

Living Our Faith

Rahab didn’t need competence to save those men, she needed faith. The Bible is filled with many more who did great tasks they weren’t qualified for. God did the work. They believed he would. 

So here I am. I’m not a perfect parent, but I serve a perfect God. He has called me to do great work. Right now, that great work is raising my daughters. It’s the greatest work he’s called me to yet.

I don’t feel qualified. Oh, every day I don’t feel enough. That’s okay. He is enough. He will do the awesome part, and I will have faith. Glory to God in the highest! 

“Come near to God and he will come near to you.” 

James 4:8

Prayer Over Our Hearts

Father God,

Oh, help us! The task of raising our children is not an easy one. We love our children in a deep, maddening sort of way. As we look on them and realize that you look on us in a similar way our hearts are softened.

How great is your love, O Lord?!

It’s both a question and a declaration because we can’t comprehend! Thank you for your grace. Work through us and help us to tenderly show your grace to our children. May we offer to them an expression of your love. May our faith be great! Lord, you are the Holy One! 

In the name of Jesus, Amen 

Teaching and Living Out the Fruit of the Spirit at Home

Teaching and Living Out the Fruit of the Spirit at Home

I am a recovering Army brat who loves to travel and start new adventures. My handsome husband and I met at Oklahoma Christian University and he whisked me away to Kansas. So, I bought some ruby red high heels and made Topeka my home. I have a rough and rowdy Princess 4-year-old girl, amazing twin boys (almost 3) and a newborn baby girl who all make every day an adventure. We are grateful to be part of an amazing church in Topeka who regularly challenges and encourages our whole family. I have been both a full-time working mom and a stay-at-home-mom and/or both at the same time at one point or another. I am constantly seeking God’s wisdom on “balancing it all” and following His plan for my life, not mine.
Elizabeth P
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Guest post by Kelly Finstrom & craft by Elizabeth Patton

Galatians 5:16-17,22 says, “So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with one another, so that you are not to do whatever you want…. But the fruit of the spirit is LOVE, JOY, PEACE, PATIENCE, KINDNESS, GOODNESS, FAITHFULNESS, GENTLENESS, and SELF-CONTROL.”

Teaching and Living Out the Fruit of the Spirit at Home

We all as moms experience these traits off and on, generally when our children are behaving at their best. But what happens when they are NOT behaving like we have trained them to do? What happens when WE as moms stop behaving as the Lord has so clearly trained us to? Our flesh all too often stands in the way of the Spirit’s work.

Romans 8:5,6 ” Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is LIFE.”

Walking by the Spirit

When controlled by the Holy Spirit we die to ourselves but are given life!

Bearing fruit is completely unattainable by our own strength or our children’s. It is only through the Spirit’s work inside of us that we will be able to demonstrate the fruit of the Spirit to our families. It starts with us.

Think about what fruits of the Spirit are or have been taught well in your home. Which fruits are you or your children most struggling with?

The Bible is clear. Walk by the Spirit. Hold fast to God’s Word.

How can we practically do this? Focus on one fruit at a time.

Is kindness a struggle for you or your child? Find specific verses relating to kindness and pray for that fruit to grow over the course of a year or for however long it takes to take root.

You may ask, “What if my child doesn’t have a personal relationship with Christ yet?” Is it possible for these fruits to be developed in their lives? What a relief that God’s control far outweighs our own. He will ultimately work in your child’s heart, but we as parents can train responses to life. Even unbelievers can benefit from the principles in Scripture.

Fruit of the Spirit Craft

You might also try this fun craft to help your kids learn these or incorporate one for a real fruit at breakfast or snack.

Love could be a red apple,

Joy could be a “smiling” banana,

Peace a pineapple,

Gentleness grapes and so on- whatever your kids will eat!

Here is a craft that your family might do to keep these in the forefront of your minds:

Make a construction paper tree- mine is about 18 inches tall but it can be as big or small as you want. You can even just draw a tree on a dry erase board OR your chalkboard OR hang them on a string. Then fold a piece of colored paper in half and make a fruit shaped “card”. This can be lots of different fruit or just one type for the whole tree. We used apples! On the outside I wrote a Fruit of the Spirit and on the inside I found a Bible verse that talked more about that Fruit. I tried to pick shorter verses for my young kids.

For example:

The kids got into it by helping trace the apples and cutting them out. We also ended up with a banana and a watermelon.

We spend time regularly working on pointing out and memorizing these verses as a family which are in a really visible place in our home so they can easily be part of the conversations we have on a daily basis.

Pray for Teeth and Talent: Training for the Soul

Pray for Teeth and Talent: Training for the Soul

Jayne Michener has been married for over twenty years to a "son of thunder" and is mother to two adolescent daughters, one delightfully immersed in nature and another humorous, artistic girl who is devoted to cats.The better days are spent developing Christian culture and character with the educational principles of Charlotte Mason in mind.The worse days are spent with lightly held sanity, tightly gripped coffee, and semi-vocalized prayer.She is on a journey depending on the Holy Spirit to guide her into all truth, whether unseen spiritual realms or earthly ventures, such as education, healing arts, nutrition, neuroscience, and art.Oh, and her children would be horrified if she did not mention that they live with two cats, Blacksmith and Beauty.
Jayne M
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Pray for Teeth and Talent

When my oldest child was eleven, we noticed she had developed a small cavity in a baby tooth, perhaps the result of a brief but thorough period of sugar banditry from the pantry.  As this was a baby tooth and causing no discomfort, the dentist advised that we take no measures other than waiting for the loss of the tooth.

Over a year’s time, this small cavity became a cavernous hole, a shell of bone with a troublesome hollow inside that was prone to collect seeds and bits of every snack or meal.  As a result my daughter began eating on only one side of her mouth for months on end, since that little tooth clung to her mouth like an unwelcome barnacle. The wayward tooth was finally lost after more than a year, and afterwards my daughter tentatively began to eat with the neglected side of her mouth.

Now, we do not tend to think of jaw muscles needing development like the focused effort required in the development of six pack abs, but my daughter found that it was difficult to chew, and her jaw muscles hurt because the muscles had atrophied through disuse.

Parenting and life provide ample metaphors for training the soul.

I considered my daughter’s difficulty, need, and pain in the light of how we might respond in other situations.  We might petition in prayer, “Lord, please strengthen her jaw and remove her pain according to your goodness and mercy.”

Or perhaps we might apply oil to her jaw and pray for healing in Jesus’s holy name.  Could we find scriptures related to strength and healing and say these over her?  Yes, we could perform all these worthy actions, and they would not be wrong, but the Lord had already provided all that was needed.

For her jaw to become strong and without pain, she must stop eating on only one side of her mouth, depending on her own limited strength.  Instead, she must follow God’s plan for personal responsibility and development by exercising the other side.  In this action, the object of her faith would be realized.

Faith without Works

Faith without works is dead.  One could say my daughter’s willingness to chew food with a weakened side of her mouth demonstrated her faith that her jaw would be whole again.

Or, she could continue to do what was easy, refuse to develop and strengthen God’s provision, and then blame God for not answering prayer, or perhaps simply decide that a strong jaw was not His will.

In actuality, though, our action is required to release the potential of what God has already generously given.

Miracles still happen, though oftentimes there is a preparation time that makes way for miracles (Prepare the way for the Lord).  However, God’s usual way of provision is through natural means that must go through a period of growth and development.  It is as if the Lord has given us seeds, and we look at the package in puzzlement, wondering why God did not answer our prayers for vegetables.

Everything develops naturally at its own pace, in its own time, if given the right variables for growth.  From muscles and teeth, to character traits and talents, these gifts are realized with use.

Is My Dedication Really to Christ?

Is My Dedication Really to Christ?

I am an Oklahoman by birth, a Texan by current living situation, but claim the world as my playground.I love to travel and hope to someday soon take our family on adventures to far off lands, where we can share God with others and experience all the wonders He has created.

I am a mother of 5 crazy, homeschooling children ages 10 & under, wife to an amazing man, and daughter of the King of the Universe!I enjoy reading, making my kids laugh, cooking, all things natural, learning to play guitar and dusting off my piano skills.One day I hope to run again, but until then I’m learning patience.
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Is My Dedication Really to Christ?

In essence this is what my 10 year meant when she asked,

“If you had the choice of being killed by a sword or dying for Jesus, which would you choose?”

Me: “I would choose to die for Jesus.” 

10 year old: “But that would really hurt?”

Me: “Yes, but only for a short time. An eternity in hell would hurt a lot more. Remember what Jesus said,So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven,but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven (Matt. 10:32-33). So even if the sword is very painful, I would rather choose Jesus than claiming he isn’t my Savior.”

10 year old: “Oh, yeah. That makes sense. I would rather die in my sleep or of old age than by a sword, but I’d rather have Jesus too.”

Oh, how I love my kid’s questions! This one has allowed us to unpack so much throughout the past couple of days. It has been amazing. It’s like everything that we have been reading in our Bibles over the years is coming together in and understanding is blossoming!  (Happy Dance, Happy Dance!)

Dedication

This question came while we were reading the Hanukkah story. Hanukkah actually means dedication and celebrates the day when the Temple in Jerusalem was once again dedicated to God after being desecrated by the Greeks.

Dedication.

Jesus celebrated this festival of dedication. He knew what it meant to be dedicated. His dedication to redeem our relationship with God that our sin destroyed led him from Heaven to Earth.

Dedication. 

He spent 30 years preparing, so he could live with a fierce focus that would lead to a physically excruciating end on the cross.

Dedication.

He overcame death and destroyed Satan’s hold on us, so that we could live eternally with God.

God sustained Jesus so he could have that kind of dedication.

We have the same choice to live with this kind of dedication. I know it seems out of our reach and if we were trying to do it by ourselves, I would completely agree that it is impossible. But with God all things are possible. With God, Jesus, and the amazing gift of the Holy Spirit, we can overcome. We are called to overcome, not by our own power, but by God’s might!

And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
– Hebrews 12:1b-3

 

Webster defines dedication as:

 

 

The Questions We Must Ask Ourselves

Are we really willing to dedicate ourselves to Christ?

If you are reading this blog, more than likely you at some point in your life decided to follow Jesus. You were overcome by knowing that even if you were the only person that had sinned, Jesus still would have gone to the cross to save you. The truth is we all have sinned and should all be overcome that Jesus dedicated himself to rescuing us from our sin.

Some of us, upon receiving his gift of grace, fall completely into digging into the Bible, learning all we can so that we can follow Christ. While some of us, just talk about how we follow God, but never really understand where he is leading, so we miss following his path, all the while proclaiming that we are on it.

(If you haven’t decided to follow Christ yet, email us, I’d love to chat with you. Honestly, I’d love to chat with you either way!)

So how do we know we are following Christ?

Our dedication to following Christ starts with reading his word. We pick up our Bible and read it. The fact that we have access to God’s word is a miracle in and of itself, but that’s a topic for another post. Don’t waste the miracle sitting in front of you. Take hold of the Bible. Even if it’s confusing now, just read it and pray for wisdom. God will give it to you. Then, prepare your heart.

Dedication Starts with Preparation

We have no idea how to dedicate our lives to God if we don’t prepare ourselves for daily dedication. This daily dedication starts by putting what we read into practice. Yep, it’s difficult. Some days more difficult than others, but it’s something we must do. If we don’t do it, then we are deceiving ourselves into thinking we are following Christ!

Deceiving ourselves?

That’s a bold statement but one James does not shy away from. He wants to make sure that if we say we are followers of Christ, then we actually follow Him.

Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves.

Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like.

 But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.
– James 1:22-25

Dedication to Christ is a daily choice.

We get to daily choose to:

  • Recognize that Jesus has all Authority on Earth and is our Lord and Savior
  • Recognize that Jesus also has authority over all the details of our lives
  • Trust that He has gifted his followers with the Holy Spirit
  • Believe that his Holy Spirit will be our Counselor and guide us to fuller understanding
  • Lean into His strength and wisdom through prayer
  • Plunge ourselves into His Word like a thirsty soul longing for a sustaining drink
  • Dig into the Bible to find answers to how we should live our lives
  • Live for Jesus no matter what the cost

Another Question that Lead to a Better Answer

Later that day, my daughter had another question in regards to whether or not I would allow her to do something.

Instead of just saying “yes” or “no” and explaining my reasoning, I chose a different option this time. One that takes more time, but will serve her much better in the long run. I asked her,

“What does the Bible says about it? Do you believe Jesus would want you to do it?”

She didn’t know any verses right off that would tell her “yes” or “no,” so the next day we pulled out the Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, our Bibles, and read through many passages to which her question pertained. There are many more she can still read to solidify what God’s will is in regards to her question.

The answer she started to find  in the Bible did not line up with what she wanted to do, so now she has a choice and she gets to choose. Will she continue to dedicate her life to Jesus or will she dedicate it to something else?

Taking a break from playing spin the dreidel to dig into the Bible!

As a parent, I pray that I will take advantage of these opportunities to continue guiding her and our other children in the right direction, helping them sort the truth from the lies, and showing them that even when we fail spiritually, Jesus’ grace is sufficient for us.

As followers of Christ, I realize we each get to decide every day if we will continue in dedication to Christ or if we will choose dedication to self. Just so we don’t get complacent, we should ask ourselves often,

“Is my dedication really to Christ?”

 

Taking Responsibility for Our Actions

Taking Responsibility for Our Actions

I am an Oklahoman by birth, a Texan by current living situation, but claim the world as my playground.I love to travel and hope to someday soon take our family on adventures to far off lands, where we can share God with others and experience all the wonders He has created.

I am a mother of 5 crazy, homeschooling children ages 10 & under, wife to an amazing man, and daughter of the King of the Universe!I enjoy reading, making my kids laugh, cooking, all things natural, learning to play guitar and dusting off my piano skills.One day I hope to run again, but until then I’m learning patience.
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Taking Responsibility for Our Actions

Teaching our kids to take responsibility for their actions and choices can be difficult but is a gift we as their parents can give them.

How many times now do we turn on the news, listen to the radio, or overhear someone express how someone else’s actions forced a certain reaction from them.

I hear it all the time in our house of 5 kids. “But s/he made me do it!”

Anytime that phrase “he made me do it” gets thrown out, I can’t help but chuckle. (Not only because my first instinct is always to laugh, but because I remember trying to place blame on someone else too.)

I mean really, who wants to get in trouble for their actions?  No one!  It’s so much easier to try and pass the buck than to accept responsibility…or is it?

This is another lie that Satan tires to thrown our way.

Taking Responsibility Provides Relief

It may be difficult to accept responsibility, especially when we royally goof up, but it provides a relief too. It forces us to confess and repent, and it takes the weight off our shoulders of hiding what we have done.

Yes, we still have to face the consequences but we can beg and plead for grace. Grace is often extended when we readily admit that we have done wrong and are actually remorseful over it.

It’s when we try to cover up our guilt to save ourselves that we pile on the consequences. We see this as adults and we see this when dealing with children.

I didn’t do it…

As an only child, I often tried to blame spills and messes on my cat.  Blaming the cat became a habit that was difficult to break.

One day I accidentally, ran into a potted plant and instead of taking the time to rectify the situation, I just went on with my day and when my mom asked about it, I blamed the cat.

I was quickly caught in the lie because the cat had died a few weeks earlier. So not only did I get in more trouble, but I gave my mother a reason to question my truthfulness.

Losing her trust was more difficult to deal with than picking up the dirt would have been.

Taking Responsibility is Empowering

Teaching responsibility is a lesson we must teach through our examples more so than our words. We know that kids always focus more on what we do than what we say. Gifting the example of putting our pride down and choosing to act right no matter what anyone else does, will bless them throughout their life.

I tell our kids all the time:

No matter how the other person reacts, you get to choose your reaction. 

So whenever anyone acts in a horrific way towards us, instead of sinking to that level, we can choose to be kind and remind our kids that Jesus calls us to love everyone no matter how they react towards us.

But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.
– Jesus, Luke 6:27-28

Isn’t that empowering! It’s exciting to think that our moods and actions are not dictated by someone else. When we teach our kids this, they then can stop thinking they are a marionette puppet in someone else’s puppet show. They can know the truth that their choices have the power to do good in a world full of evil and they do not have to be overcome by it. Praise be to the Lord Jesus Christ who through his Spirit can gift us the ability to love those who hate us and try to mistreat us!

Let’s take that stance with our children. It’s our responsibility to teach them to take responsibility for their actions. It takes time, patience, and consistency, but our families and our society will benefit greatly from it. More importantly, our Lord will be glorified because of it!

 

Becoming a Parent Who Is Slow to Anger

Becoming a Parent Who Is Slow to Anger

I am a girl who loves to sit with a cup of coffee and daydream. I am most passionate about Jesus, my family, and family ministry. My husband and I live in Oklahoma with our two precious daughters. I spend my days with my girls, discovering and growing alongside them! You can usually find us either in our sunroom, the park, or taking long walks through Target. :)
Kristin J
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Becoming a Parent Who Is Slow to Anger

How often do you find yourself feeling angry toward your children? This is hard question to ask myself. I make significant effort to be gentle, but truthfully, it is quite often that I notice myself raging inside as my eldest, almost 4 years old, is becoming more familiar with right and wrong.

My moment of internal strife might play out in this way:

Why won’t she just listen and obey? What if someone gets hurt? What if she behaves like this in Bible Class? 

I can’t let her act like this! I have to show her who’s boss! 

In my anger, I lash out. The power struggle begins.

I make irrational statements in awful tones. I give ineffective punishments.

I feel horrible. She feels horrible.

Later on I hear her talking in the same ugly tone. Hmm… where did she learn to speak in that way?

Why is it that anger is the first instinct for so many of us, especially in regards to parenting? I believe most parents have good intentions. We want our children to act respectfully and we burn inside when we can’t convince them to cooperate. We are desperate. I believe that James, the brother of Jesus, and servant of God, speaks to the heart of this issue.

“My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.” James 1:19-20

Anger Won’t Bring about Righteousness Living

In our Bible Class we recently studied this passage, and though James doesn’t specifically mention parenting, my heart couldn’t help but hear these words from a parent’s perspective. How often am I angry with my daughter because I want her to live righteously. Yet anger won’t bring about this righteousness- in myself or in my daughter. It is my experience that hasty anger often only brings about shame.

Let’s read on to hear the solutions that James offers.

“Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you. Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.” James 1:21-22

“If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless. Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after the orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” James 1:26-27

Righteous living is something that our children will learn through a lifetime of observation and loving instruction. James makes it very clear that being religious is about guarding our hearts and humble service.

Do our children see that in us?

Do our children see that we are humble and compassionate, ready to listen, and slow to become angry?

Do we have a tight rein on our tongue when we speak to our children?

There are many different styles of parenting, and I certainly don’t claim to have all the answers. Often parenting requires direct and assertive responses, but I believe this can be done gently and in love. It is my conviction that the instruction to be slow to anger also applies to our interactions with our children. Does this mean that we will never be angry? No, of course not!

It means that our instinct will be patience,  kindness, and gentleness rather than anger.

We will have open arms and listening ears.

When it is time to be direct, we will try to stay calm. We will be our children’s “safe space.”

This type of parenting does not come naturally for me. I pray multiple times each day for the Lord to help me. I boldly pray for the fruit of the Spirit to be displayed as I interact with my daughters. This passage in James was a strong reminder that I need to make a conscious effort to tame my tongue and be slow to anger in my responses to my children. I absolutely can’t do this on my own. I need Jesus to work through me as I train up my children in the way they should go. We all need him to!

Praying Over Our Hearts

I’d like to end this thought with a prayer.

Father God,

You are our Heavenly Father and we praise you and thank you for wonderfully making our children. Work through us as we train them in the way they should go. In us, express your love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control. Help us to be slow to anger, with tongues that are tamed through faithful dependence on you. May our children see glimpses of you in our interactions with them. Forgive us for our selfish ways and for the times we respond poorly to our children. Give us strength and help when we need it. Soften our hearts and help us to find your joy every day. 

In the name of Jesus, Amen 

 

 

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