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I Love You 100!?!?

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100

“I love you!”

“No, I love you!”

“I love you more.”

“No, I love you more.”

“Well, I love you infinity!”

“Well then, I love you double infinity!”

 

Has this never ending conversation ever gone on at your house? I know it has at mine. That is until we put a stop to it. Continue reading

Agreements

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Handshake

Have you ever said one of these things to yourself?

I am just a messy person.

I’m bossy – I can’t help it. 

I’m forgetful – they just need to get used to it. 

I’ll never really succeed at that. 

This is how it will always be.  I’ll just have to live with it. 

Perhaps you have made one of these statements.  These are all things that people say about themselves, thinking that they are being practical, or even self-aware.

These, my friend, are agreements.

Remember, God is Truth and Satan is our adversary.  He tempts us.  He tricks us.  He accuses us.  He wants to devour us.

Do you think he has stopped? Continue reading

The Pitfalls of Parenting Praise

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Trophy2

We love our kids, and we believe that using words of encouragement over them is incredibly important.  We try to be involved parents, and because of this we give our kids a lot of praise.

But there is a pitfall to avoid on this parenting praise path.  Like a trap in the jungle, it is disguised to make it difficult to see.  Perhaps this exercise will help uncover it:

Fill in the blanks:

If I am a “winner” when I win, then when I lose, I am a _________. Continue reading

Text Tone

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TextTone

Oh be careful little mouth what you say

Oh be careful little mouth what you say

For the Father up above is looking down in love

So be careful little mouth what you say

Anyone remember this oldie but goodie? Today I was texting back and forth with my husband and noticed myself adding extra inflection to my words as I was telling Siri what to text. Subconsciously I think I was expecting Siri to translate my tone and my humor into the text. I chuckled to myself as I read my text to make sure that Siri interpreted it right. She got the words right, but somehow it didn’t have the extra kick of humor that would have been there if I was talking with Nate face to face. Thankfully my husband knows me well, and I am sure he was able to read each and every text in the tone of voice that I had hoped. Even if he didn’t, he knows and understands my heart.

But it got me to thinking. Not everyone knows me this well. It doesn’t matter how I tell Siri to say it – the recipient of my text will interpret it any way they choose. Scary, isn’t it! Words are so powerful. What we say to others can make a dramatic impact on their mood, emotions and outlook. That is why we must choose our words wisely. We must also choose how to hear words. We can allow words to affect us in a positive or negative way. Only through the help of God can we interpret things in the way that we should.

IMG_0672 Continue reading

Valentine’s Promises For Your Kids

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ConversationHearts

Valentine’s Day is not too far away, and I am sure all of us are trying to figure out how to show love to our spouses.  But it is also a great opportunity to show your kids how you love them, in specific ways.

As Nate and I read book after book, we see a common thread about the inner longings of the human heart. A female longs to be cherished, to be sought after and adored. A male no matter his age needs to know that he has what it takes to succeed. As parents it is our job to speak to those longings. To build their confidence and make sure they leave our homes with the boldness to live out God’s calling on their lives.

What better time than Valentine’s to get yourself in the habit of expressing that love to your children. (And your spouse too, of course!)  Here are two ideas to get your mind a thinking. Continue reading

Funny Things Happen When the Tables Are Turned

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Phone

At the beginning of the summer I took on a part time job at our church. Since April I have served as the Children’s Ministry Coordinator and have loved every minute of it. It is a fun job but a crazy, busy job. VBS filled up most of my summer and the time spent paid off since 48 children made a commitment to the Lord!! (Sidenote: International Spy Academy by Answers in Genesis was AWESOME!! I highly recommend it for your church!  Here is 2015’s Camp Kilimanjaro!)

In the past I worked 12 hours a week as a pharmacist. I got the privilege of working with my husband for most of my working career and loved it. My work schedule was less hectic than my husband’s manager job, but for the most part he took the time to eat lunch with me and connect with me throughout the day. It was great.

Then I got pregnant with our fourth child. We decided it was time for me to stay home. Not having those close connections during the week I started to crave more interaction with my husband. I wanted to know how he was doing, and I for sure wanted him to know what was going on in my day. I desired to hear his voice – to me it comforted my soul. Well, as we adjusted to the new way of doing things, I mourned the loss of our lunch dates and the random phone calls or emails. I began to get hurt when he could only give me 2 minutes of his time before he went on to his next meeting. There would be days when he would forget to call at lunch (which I am blessed that he does call on a fairly regular basis) and I would be sad and feel neglected. Continue reading

Little Pitchers Have Big Ears

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Pitcher

A couple days ago Dana and I were trying to decide whether to attend an upcoming Bible Study or stay home. We are usually faithful attenders, but we had just gotten back from out of town, and we had a lot to get ready before another trip. To seal the deal, we realized that we have 3 evenings planned in the next 2 weeks where we will be going out together and getting a babysitter for the kids. As I picked green beans in my glorious garden, with the kids running around in the yard and helping pick once in a while, Dana and I discussed how we didn’t want to have yet another night where we didn’t spend time with our kids. So, we weighed our options and decided to skip the Bible study this one time. Dana went back into the house and I didn’t think too much of it. But then a minute or two later, Hannah came up and said, “Daddy, I’m glad that you guys think about us, instead of just deciding what to do.” I asked her what she meant, and she said, “You didn’t just decide to go to the Bible Study – you knew that we need you to be with us.” I didn’t know that she was listening…let alone comprehending what our discussion was about. You would think I would know that by now! Continue reading

C13 Mom: Love Does Not Boast, Part 2

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C13MomBoast

“He did all this so you would never say to yourself, ‘I have achieved this wealth with my own strength and energy.’  Remember the Lord your God. He is the one who gives you power to be successful, in order to fulfill the covenant he confirmed to your ancestors with an oath.”

Deuteronomy 8:17-18 New Living Translation (NLT)

Blessed

It seems to me that gratitude is the perfect antidote for boasting.  An attitude of thankfulness can curb a bragging spirit. It will change a person’s perspective of why you have what you have. I love how my husband, Nate is quick to point out all that God has made. He sees God in nature and is constantly showing our children how creative God is and how He put different plants and animals in different environments where they could thrive.  It is easy for him to see and explain that nature is a gift from God – a blessing that we did not earn or deserve, but that we get to enjoy and have a responsibility to take care of.  It is easy for him to give God the glory in nature, which helps our kids think about how awesome God is and consider the many blessings that we have been given.

But the lesson can extend far beyond the natural world.  It is so important to teach your kids that everything you have is God’s, and our job is simply to take good care of what He has entrusted to us.  An important statement you can teach your children is “We are blessed.” This is so much better than “Look what we have!”  We are stewards and caretakers, not owners. Continue reading

Verb Tense

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VerbTense

Words are important.  We use them to shape our future and to direct our thoughts and our actions.  We all probably know that.  But did you know that your verb tense makes a difference too?  I will always remember the lesson that the ICU attending physician gave us.  Once in a while a new resident doctor (in training) would go through a patient’s labs and say, “His potassium is low, so we are going to give him some IV potassium.”  The attending physician who was in charge would say, “You know what to do.  Why isn’t this already done? When you report to me I want the IV to be going already.”  The residents only made that mistake once!

The wiser, older doctor wanted the resident physician to use a verb that was past tense.  “His potassium is low, so we gave him 40mEq of potassium this morning.”  Ah, much better.

Here are three verb tenses for you to compare, exemplifying the way that your verb tense can make or break your effectiveness at work and in your relationships.   Continue reading

Face and Tone

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C13MomKind

The time has come to wrap up Kindness. This week is has been the hardest one for me to write…probably because it is one that I am still struggling to conquer. I believe that kindness has just as much to do with how you say something as what you actually say. You could be speaking truth, but if it isn’t spoken in love it causes the other person to become defensive and reject it. What you are saying may be needed, but you could be hardening the other person’s heart with your tone of voice. What you are saying may be factual, but you could be damaging the other person’s feelings by your facial expressions.

It really isn’t just the words but also your tone of voice and facial expressions that matter.  All three work together to send the total message.   Continue reading