The Father’s Love

Every day, without fail, my son will take my wife and I by the hand and pull us into his room. Why? Because he desires our attention; our love. He always seems to make up these goofy games that he somehow involves us in. Some of them involve toy cars crashing into each other. Others involve balloons flying in our faces. But his favorite game is to have Melissa and I sit facing each other with about five feet between us, then Tristan takes turns running and jumping into our arms. If we try to hold on to the hug for too long, he let’s us know that’s not his idea of fun. He’s more into the one-or-two seconds-then-on-to-the-next-thing-hug, whereas his parents are more into the hold-on-for-dear-life-ten-second-hug… but it’s a wonderful thing that our precious boy wants to hug us at all.

Drew and Tristan

Just yesterday as Tristan was pulling us into his room again, Melissa said, “He needs our love”. At that moment, something switched on for me. It was a reminder of a loving truth.

That just as our toddler desires his parent’s love and affection, we need the love and affection of the Heavenly Father.

And just as Melissa and I are overwhelmed with love that we get to hang out with such a precious little dude, so our Heavenly Father overflows with Divine love for all of His sons and daughters.

As we spend time daily with the Lord, let us not look at it as a religious activity. Or even as our duty. But rather, let us run into the Father’s arms and let Him embrace us with His boundless grace. Let us listen as He speaks of His endless love for his children in the scriptures. And let us cast our cares at the feet of Him who truly cares more than anyone else could.

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3 Tips For A Busy Mom To Find Time With God

There are days (okay, many days) that as a work-at-home mom I am completely exhausted. I don’t know if I can take one more tantrum or clean up another mess. On those days I can really gage where I am spiritually by my reaction.

Sometimes I yell at my son who I know doesn’t know better. Sometimes I want to have a melt down myself and join him kicking and screaming on the floor. Other days, (and sadly these are rare) I calmly love on him.

What makes some days good and some days so difficult?

“For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks. The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him.” -Matthew 12:34-35

If I am exhausted, running on fumes both physically and spiritually then my outpouring is purely of the flesh. On days when I run to Jesus to rejuvenate my soul and give me the strength needed for the day, then “goodness in” produces “goodness out”. I am able to love and reflect Christ in tough situations.

In Jen Hatmaker’s book, “Out of the Spin Cycle” she says, “If nothing good is stored up, where are we possibly going to draw patience? Grace? Longsuffering? Young motherhood is too demanding to attempt without a deep connection to Christ.” I couldn’t have said it better myself Mrs. Hatmaker. Without God’s truth daily we are running on empty. We have nothing “good” left to give so when we respond we are weak, crippled and unable to respond in love. We must refuel by reading the Word of God.

I don’t have time for “Quiet Time”

We’ve all been there! I still am there most of the time. My days are jam packed and after being up 2 or 3 times with a teething baby the last thing I want to do is wake up early to have a quiet time. But God knows our struggles as busy, sleep deprived momma’s. He knows we are each in different seasons and here is the best part…

There isn’t one cookie cutter way to spend time with Jesus.

Some days you may have more time than others to devote to your time in the Word. Other days, you may be using your iPhone while you are in the bathroom just to find some uninterrupted time to get some “goodness” in. And that is okay. We don’t need to sit down for hour long in-depth bible studies, complete with commentaries and Greek/Hebrew translations. We just need to seek Jesus! 

Here are 3 tips for a busy momma to find time with God!

1. Open your bible. Whether that is literally turning the page or tapping on the App in your phone. Open it! Pick one scripture or passage and read through it a few times. Seek practical application from that verse. How does it apply to your life? Try to repeat or think upon that scripture throughout the day or week. Be intentional with your time. Whether you are a morning person that enjoys waking up to get some chores done before the kiddos arise. Or if you are like me, and you are more creative once the little one goes down for bed. Try to designate a time that you will intentionally meet with God. I say “intentionally” because in our own flesh, we will not feel like it and we will make lots of excuses for why we don’t have “time”.

2. Pray without ceasing. All day I commune with the Lord. I pray when I’m in the shower, cooking, and cleaning. You don’t have to be sitting to talk with Jesus. He is always with us. Always listening. We also need those times to literally “be still” and listen for Him to speak to us through His Word. There is a balance, but don’t think just because you are always on-the-go that Jesus isn’t with you.

3.  Get the kids involved. As parents we want to disciple our children and raise them as warriors for our King. What a great way to spend time in the Word together. You can make it fun for the kids, whether it is a fun scripture sing-a-long CD you can dance around the house to. Or a Veggie Tales DVD that you can chat about how the scripture used applies to their life. Or if you have a young reader, you can ask them to read a scripture to you. There are endless options that will help get your children involved, filling them with “goodness” as well. The same scripture in Matthew is true for children as well. “For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks”. What are you exposing your children to?

Instill Love Instead Of Fear Into Your Children

My childhood came to a crashing hault at the age of 10 when my brother tragically passed away. After his death, I became so fearful that I would lose those that were closest to me. And as any parent would, my Mom and Dad became over protective of their now, only living child. Subconsciously, they instilled fear into me that I am still overcoming by the grace of God.  Fear is so easy to pass on to our children but we can break the cycle.

What do you want to instill in your children?

Today, I am sharing at The Better Mom about how to instill love instead of fear into your children.

 

Being A Mom Is Hard

Dear Fellow Mom,

I salute you. Yes you, the one reading this with spit up on your shirt,  your hair in a messy bun that hasn’t been cleaned in 3 days. I commend you. You are running on maybe 4 hours of sleep and can juggle a baby on your hip, while you unload groceries and make lunch at the same time.  You are my hero and I just want you to know that you are not alone.

I’m going to be real for a moment. I hope that’s okay… I mean, I know you probably think my home is pristine and I spend my day’s making Pinterest wreaths and lounging around in my makeup when I have no where to go.  Let me just pop that bubble right now!

Most days, I can’t wait till 8pm. That is the magical time when I put my 18 month old to bed.

I feel like I have to wait to get all my chores done once my child is asleep because while he is awake it’s my job to save his life numerous times when he decides he is going to leap off the couch. My day consists of cleaning up spilled milk, food and spit up. Very glamorous.

It’s like I am caught up in a whirlwind of chaos and the moment

I try to get something done, my son needs me.

My house looks like a war zone, toys are everywhere. And I mean everywhere, in cabinets, behind the entertainment center, inside the couch and I haven’t seen my son’s rug in a few weeks. They don’t put that on Pinterest. And who has time for all those DIY projects anyway? I can’t even sit a pen and notepad down on the couch without my toddler scribbling on the furniture. So no Pinterest, I will not be bringing out the glue gun.

Right now I have about 3 mounds of laundry placed strategically around my home that I still have to fold and put away. There are probably toys in there too. And let’s not talk about what is under the couch. I hope I’m not the only mom that has tossed out a few mildew bottles because they were just that gross and I didn’t have the time or energy to clean it. What about discipline?

Disciplining a toddler is like banging your head against a wall repeatedly all day long.

Motherhood Is A Beautiful MessCruel torture. I feel like a failure most of the time because my son doesn’t listen, no matter what method I use. Nothing works right now…. “time out” is fun for him, I could literally say “no” till I’m blue in the face and honestly, I am trying not to laugh when he gives me that devious grin that means, “Whatcha gonna do now momma?”

So like I said, being a mom is hard. When my husband gets home and sees the house and a messy momma who hasn’t showered and is still in her pj’s – he must be thinking, “What has she been doing all day?” Thankfully he doesn’t say that.

But that is about the time I break down into tears because unless you are a mom, you don’t understand how hard it is.

You are always worrying about your babies. You are sleep deprived and hormonal. You are self conscious about your post-baby body and feel like you will never live up to the mom’s in your head that you’ve placed on a pedestal. Let me tell you, knock those pedestal’s over ladies because us momma’s are all in the same boat and I can guarantee that same mom agrees with everything above.

No one is perfect and the best part is, it’s okay. We don’t have to be perfect. We don’t have to try to be like the mom down the street, or act like we have it all together on Facebook or Instagram. Embrace your beautiful mess. Some days, I catch myself thinking – oh if only my son were a few years older and he could clean up after himself. Or once he is out of the house, my home will finally be clean.

Oh dear momma, this is the best time of our lives. This is when the tears start flowin’. Once our babies are grown and there aren’t any more toys to be found, we will look back to this season in our lives and we will miss the beautiful mess. We will ache in our souls for the chance to rock our precious baby at 2am or watch Cars again for the 10 millionth time.

So yes, today may have been hard. I don’t doubt that one bit. But I pray that you will find hope in knowing that you are living the best time of your life right now. Embrace your chaos, because it’ll be over sooner than we think.

Love,

Liss

 

PS. Can you pass me a tissue?

UnWired Mom Challenge: Week 2

Can I just say that I love this book! It has so much wisdom crammed into 72 pages!

I feel like this is a book I will re-read every few months just to hold myself accountable and make sure I am not burnt out. In my busy life I tend to say “yes” a lot, thinking I can fit it all in. I am slowly starting to say “no” and concentrate on what God is clearly calling me to.

In Sarah Mae’s book “The UnWired Mom” she talks about “Trying to do it all”. I can so relate. She says:

Life began to roll over on to me; I couldn’t stop it and I couldn’t catch up. I knew I was breaking.

As my husband and I began “Love Uncensored” together I didn’t realize how much time I would have to spend on the computer. Wired – constantly. I instantly became addicted to checking our “stats” page and seeing how many views we were getting. My phone would “ding” each time we received a comment or a new follower and I felt the need to stop whatever I was doing to look at our blog. I noticed I was allowing my son to watch more and more TV and missing out on our morning routine of playing in his room together. I know he is watching me and I would hate if he thought me being “Wired” was more important than him. 

Thankfully our blog isn’t even a month old yet and I feel like God brought this book into my life so I can implement these tools and principles before I completely burn myself out. It’s all about time management and self-discipline.

I am so glad I accepted this challenge (even though I failed miserably most days). I know this came into my life at the perfect time and I will use the tools in this book to protect my time with my family and to keep my priorities in order.

Thank you Sarah Mae!

Don’t forget to Live Authentic and Love Uncensored!

 

UnWired Mom Challenge: Week 1

To be completely honest, this week was a struggle. I am slightly alarmed at how “wired” I am.

The UnWired Mom Challenge is from Sarah Mae’s new eBook. Click HERE to read about the challenge.

One of the first daily challenges is to write out your WHY. Why do you want to be UnWired? Why is it important to you?

My WHY statement: I want to truly be invested in the relationships around me. I want my husband and son to know that they mean more to me than my Facebook status. I want to be a role model for my son and be disciplined in all areas of my life especially social media.   

So that’s my goal. To live in the now, connected to the world around me physically – not by my internet access.

One of the next challenges was to actually turn off the Internet for one whole day! No iphone, no mac, no internet, no wires! I love the concept. I really do, but I had an EPIC FAIL! I couldn’t do it. I know I really didn’t try too hard – but still…

My biggest “take away” from this week was to truly engage in life! There are times I must put my phone away. Do I really want my son, Tristan to see me with my phone in my hand all day? I want to actually PLAY with him. Without worrying about social media or even taking his picture. Sometimes, he just needs undistracted time with his Momma!

I realized how attached I am to my iPhone. This week I really want to work harder to implement boundaries and limit my access. This next week of the Challenge I am motivated to spend more time engaging in life and spending time with my family.

It’s not too late to join the challenge, find out more from Sarah Mae!

Click HERE to purchase “The UnWired Mom”

 

Unwired Mom Challenge

Do you say you’ll only pop online for “5 minutes” but end up being on an hour (or more)?

Do you have trouble going to sleep because you keep checking Facebook?

Do you wish you could be more disciplined with how you spend your time?

Do you want to be fully present with your life and the lives of those around you?

Do you want to not regret your life?

Do you know Sarah Mae? She is one my favorite bloggers and authors. Her newest e-book is called “Unwired Mom”. Its focus is choosing to live free in an internet addicted world.

For the next two weeks she is hosting a challenge. “It is not a stay-off-your-computer-for-two-weeks challenge. It’s a challenge to help you try and break some habits and come up with a vision for living free and whole and un-addicted while still enjoying the benefits of the Internet.”

I don’t know about you – but I struggle with being “wired” all day. In a world where iphones, mac’s, ipad’s and tv’s are constantly powered on, it can distract us from the LIFE and PEOPLE right in front of us.

 

This is what I will be focusing on for the next 2 weeks:

  • Be intentional with my time management: blog, marketing and writing.
  • Limit Internet access to Tristan’s nap times and bed time.
  • Spend quality time with my loved ones – without the TV on or an iphone in my hand!

What does this challenge look like for you?

Read about the Unwired Mom Challenge here.