Transitions

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Spectacular sunrises and sunsets are a reminder this is a new day or time for transition at the end of a day. August or September brings a return to school, the changing of the weather; cool mornings from a scorching summer, watching geese fly in V formation traveling to new destinations; life is ever-evolving.

Whether you have a kid in school or you’ve changed jobs or locations, whether there’s been a change in your family dynamics: life is about transitions.

Are we OK with change? What kind of change are we looking for? Are we seeking the right answers to the questions or are we just trying to plot our path?

God can transform us from the inside out.

Romans 12: 1 – 2 tells us we’re not to be conformed to this world but instead be transformed by renewing of your mind. We’re not to be afraid of transitions or be anxious.

Psalm 34:9-10 NLT
[9] Fear the LORD, you his godly people, for those who fear him will have all they need. [10] Even strong young lions sometimes go hungry, but those who trust in the LORD will lack no good thing.

Proverbs 19:23 NLT
[23] Fear of the LORD leads to life, bringing security and protection from harm.

We are called to anticipation, that’s not in fear but it’s an excitement and awe. Yes, life does march on even if we want to scream, “ I am not ready for new things.”

2 Timothy 1:7 NLT
[7] For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.

Our transition with God can propel us to see the old become new. Life transitions become a place of new beginnings instead of anxiety filled dread.

As I watch my youngest transition to new friends to new beginnings to a new school, I’m reminded that even this mom has to be OK with transitions.

The Merriam Webster definition for transition is: a period or phase in which such a change or shift is happening.

Synonyms: Evolution, adaptation, passage. Antonyms: conclusion, sameness, decline, end

What do you want to be in awe living a transformed life with your Creator God or to remain the same or decline? Our kids watch our emotions and actions. We can pretend we believe the Word of God or we can learn to trust him to our deepest soul.

Singles, married, parents or not, we have a choice: trust God or not? Are we showing our kids that we trust God with their lives? School violence, society unrest, bullying and a host of other things can take us to a fearful life. However, does that bring comfort to our kids or make them question all the foundational promises from God?

Our kids faith will grow independent of our own, let them see their parents believe God and walk in faith.

If there are days when this feels exceptionally hard, we must take our concerns to Jesus, listen to a favorite worship song, reach out to our tribe of Sisters and Brothers in Christ and march with Him anyways!!

“I Stand Here”, by Hannah Kerr, really encouraged me this week. Powerful promises of standing firm are in its lyrics. May it bring strength to you as you turn up the volume. God bless you warriors of the faith in Jesus alone!

Galatians 6:15-16 NLT
[15] It doesn’t matter whether we have been circumcised or not. What counts is whether we have been transformed into a new creation. [16] May God’s peace and mercy be upon all who live by this principle; they are the new people of God.

Hens and Chicks

The queens of the coop

It’s hard to believe I used to be a big city girl. As I sit watching the integration of our white adult leghorn hens and a new batch of chickens, should I say chicks, I am mesmerized.

There really is such a thing as the pecking order. Each particular group of chickens: one set of six adults and one set of seven varieties of chicks, has their own pecking order.

The fabulous 7 chicks

There’s a big white Leghorn chicken, the dominant one, and there are the rest that follow. It really is survival of the fittest. There’s always got to be the leader and the rest are followers. That’s what makes a good coop.

Just like in parenting or life, the leaders job is to protect and keep the group moving especially in times of predatory behavior. Yes, we have fox,coyotes, hawks, and, of course, the dreaded huge great horned owls. Spring into summertime can bring black bear.

In our lives, our homes, and society, there are leaders and there are followers. As a parent, I do my best to guide my chicks. I know one leader that doesn’t change though, his name is Jesus? His wisdom is solid and never changes in over 2000 years.

Scripture tells us Jesus grieved over Jerusalem as he watched their continual turning from his ways and from godly wisdom. He even described it as despair and wanting to gather together these chicks under his wings for protection. Watching my chickens makes me imagine Jesus must grieve over some current events, however, He wants people to make the free will choice to follow Him.

Matthew 23:37-39 NLT. [37] “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones God’s messengers! How often I have wanted to gather your children together as a hen protects her chicks beneath her wings, but you wouldn’t let me. [38] And now, look, your house is abandoned and desolate. [39] For I tell you this, you will never see me again until you say, ‘Blessings on the one who comes in the name of the LORD!'”

You see in those times Jesus came and they believed he would be their King and his people didn’t know him. The Pharisees were threatened by His presence, and their communication to the people spoke hate and Jesus was crucified. He came to lay down His life for us all, sinners.His description of hen to chicks is heartfelt.

John 3:16-21 NLT
[16] “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. [17] God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him. [18] “There is no judgment against anyone who believes in him. But anyone who does not believe in him has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son. [19] And the judgment is based on this fact: God’s light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil. [20] All who do evil hate the light and refuse to go near it for fear their sins will be exposed. [21] But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants.”

The Jewish people at that time thought he was going to save them in a human way. Jesus will come again.

Revelation 1:4-8 NLT
[4] This letter is from John to the seven churches in the province of Asia. Grace and peace to you from the one who is, who always was, and who is still to come; from the sevenfold Spirit before his throne; [5] and from Jesus Christ. He is the faithful witness to these things, the first to rise from the dead, and the ruler of all the kings of the world. All glory to him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by shedding his blood for us. [6] He has made us a Kingdom of priests for God his Father. All glory and power to him forever and ever! Amen. [7] Look! He comes with the clouds of heaven. And everyone will see him- even those who pierced him. And all the nations of the world will mourn for him. Yes! Amen! [8] “I am the Alpha and the Omega-the beginning and the end,” says the Lord God. “I am the one who is, who always was, and who is still to come-the Almighty One.”

I know this is a serious blog post for serious times. Jesus knows the timeline of all things and what the future holds. Crazy times lead me to seek His wisdom through the book of Revelation. As parents, we must share what we learn from God so our children learn who to follow.

I am just a baby chick, however, I want to follow the lead Hen, the leader of my life, Jesus! Because I can’t imagine following anything else.

Mother’s Day hard?

Psalm 145:3-4 MSG
[3] GOD is magnificent; he can never be praised enough. There are no boundaries to his greatness. [4] Generation after generation stands in awe of your work; each one tells stories of your mighty acts.

As a women of infertility, I understand the challenges of observing Mother’s Day. I have learned that God’s family is formed in many ways. Before I became a mom of adoption, He allowed me to feed into the lives of thousands of kids to teens as a nurse and public speaker for injury prevention. He also, gave me places to mentor foster kids as a big sister. There are other places the Lord can use your love and care beyond a biological child. You can make a difference to generations.

You are loved by Jesus

Mother’s Day is a day of multiple emotions; joy, peace, love, grief, loss, and regret. As a mom blessed through adoption, I think of the sacrifice of our birth families along with my love for our children. I think of their loss and willingness to place ( not abandon) their children to my husband and my arms. I know they each ponder, as Mary did in the Bible regarding Jesus, the life of their biological child. Yet their love for their child, according to their own hearts expressed to me and my husband, even in grief and loss, lead them to choose their forever parents. I have a tender heart that grieves with them even in my blessing every year at Mother’s Day.

I extend greetings on Mother’s Day and I receive communication that affirms, a mom never forgets their child and they have communicated appreciation for our loving care. We are the family of extended adoption. We are blessed. It is not easy. It can be emotionally hard for all in the adoption triad (child, birth and adoptive parents). However, spiritually we all must lean on Jesus for closing the holes in our hearts that only He can fill. I share with our children the same message, no mom or dad can fill the space in our hearts meant for Jesus!

It takes trust in God above all (even though in our human emotion it seems impossible). It is hope for our children’s future holding the hand of Jesus for wisdom. It is unfailing love for our children who are created in the image of God.

Psalm 145:8-21 MSG
[8] GOD is all mercy and grace- not quick to anger, is rich in love. [9] GOD is good to one and all; everything he does is suffused with grace. [10-11] Creation and creatures applaud you, GOD; your holy people bless you. They talk about the glories of your rule, they exclaim over your splendor, [12] Letting the world know of your power for good, the lavish splendor of your kingdom. [13] Your kingdom is a kingdom eternal; you never get voted out of office. GOD always does what he says, and is gracious in everything he does. [14] GOD gives a hand to those down on their luck, gives a fresh start to those ready to quit. [15] All eyes are on you, expectant; you give them their meals on time. [16] Generous to a fault, you lavish your favor on all creatures. [17] Everything GOD does is right- the trademark on all his works is love. [18] GOD’s there, listening for all who pray, for all who pray and mean it. [19] He does what’s best for those who fear him- hears them call out, and saves them. [20] GOD sticks by all who love him, but it’s all over for those who don’t. [21] My mouth is filled with GOD’s praise. Let everything living bless him, bless his holy name from now to eternity!

I love this Message version of scripture, Psalm 145. No matter who you are, a single person, a single mom or dad, married, divorced, God sticks by all who love Him, those who fear Him in respect, seek Him, repent from sins and believe He is Lord. Call to Him and feel His love extend to all, moms or not!

LOVE

Jesus loves you !!

Today is Valentine’s Day, a day when those with love interests and those without are deeply effected. We all want to feel loved. It is the most important connection to our human race. It defines our need to fit in and feel a sense of worth. Our Creator made us in His image, Jesus loves you!

Love crosses every human relationship: family, friends, besties, team mates, and then, the more obvious on Valentine’s Day, the romantic relationship.

God gives a template for how to really love another human. The key character traits are found in 1 Corinthians 13, I have found over a few decades of marriage these traits are not always easy but they are mandatory.

Grace, mercy and forgiveness in relationships is a choice. These are the same character examples given to us by our Savior, Jesus Christ. We can’t use these love actions without knowing Him and wanting to reflect Jesus to those we love. It is not in our strength it is in asking Jesus to help us be a loving example. On my own, my responses tend to be selfish, self serving, impulsive, prideful and pretty much it’s “my way”.

So on those days, you feel anger, disappointment or sadness related to a miscommunication in your life, seek Jesus first and be amazed as your response is more like Him.

1 Corinthians 13:4-7 NLT. [4] Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud [5] or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. [6] It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. [7] Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

Love in Action exercise: Reread 1 Corinthians 13 and replace your name in every place of you see love.

As you say aloud: ——— is patient, ——— is kind, etc. you may reevaluate your responses and deep breathe as you exchange your actions in love Jesus way. It isn’t easy however it will be worth it.

Happy Valentines Day! Jesus loves you!

Help me be more

We are so capable of transformation in our walk with Jesus! Did you know He wants to move in your life? We have to submit to His authority not as a judge snd jury but as the One who wants to use us in a mighty way.

Zach William’s lyrics, Less of Me, were so right on for me lately. I want to be more full of grace, mercy, kindness, and less like me.

We all have failures, warts, so to speak in our lives. But we can be healed of the past and be used for the Kingdom of God.

We don’t have to settle for less than God’s best plan. Today’s the day, be willing to be more like Jesus and less of you. First, you must submit to His authority, bend your knee to Him, believe He can transform, say it aloud as Romans 10:8 – 15 reminds.

Romans 10:8-15 NLT
[8] In fact, it says, "The message is very close at hand; it is on your lips and in your heart." And that message is the very message about faith that we preach: 
[9] If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
 [10] For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by openly declaring your faith that you are saved. 
[11] As the Scriptures tell us, "Anyone who trusts in him will never be disgraced." 
[12] Jew and Gentile are the same in this respect. They have the same Lord, who gives generously to all who call on him. [13] For "Everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be saved." 
[14] But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? [15] And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, "How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!"

May you feel the love of Jesus direct your life. It is amazing;)! If you have made this declaration of faith, let me know, I rejoice with you as does the family of Jesus!

10 Ways to Love a Teenager

When my daughter became a teenager, she did something that baffled me. It happened when she was tired or had just woken up. She’d stand in front of …

10 Ways to Love a Teenager

I really appreciate the wisdom I have found from Kari Kampakis. I have two of her books. If you have a preteen, teenager or even young adult kids, you will benefit from her consistent, transparent, God given wisdom.

I am blessed to reblog this post “10 ways to Love a Teenager”. I am sure it will be a great resource. God bless you as a mentor, parent, friend, human. 😉 Mary

Under construction

Become a Tent of Light

Men and women, you are under construction. The architect of your existence made you to be a solid example of the character of Jesus. But, it takes effort and a carpenters tools to break through the character defects. Hammers, nails, drills, whatever is needed.

My hammer occurred this morning as I read Proverbs 14, the words of truth practically bounced off the page. I was given a personal lesson in the life of a women. It is hard work in the building up of faith and tearing down of my character flaws.

The choices I make can bring foolish or rewarding results.
The impulse of my heart ( by the way the heart can be deceitful) can lean to the fool at times especially when hangry, insomniac, or misunderstood. Brain fog, stomach grumbling I can take the bait in communication and bark sometimes. Can you relate?

Words and impulsive reactions matter to God and they should matter to me. Foolish responses effect all relationships. It starts at home in our inner circle of influence. It can be your friend, coworker, family group, or even the places where you find joy such as the gym, with music or sipping coffee with a friend.

Proverbs 14:1
1. The wise woman builds her house,
but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down.
2
Whoever fears the Lord walks uprightly,
but those who despise him are devious in their ways.
3
A fool’s mouth lashes out with pride,
but the lips of the wise protect them.
4
Where there are no oxen, the manger is empty,
but from the strength of an ox come abundant harvests.
5
An honest witness does not deceive,
but a false witness pours out lies.
6
The mocker seeks wisdom and finds none,
but knowledge comes easily to the discerning.
7
Stay away from a fool,
for you will not find knowledge on their lips.
8
The wisdom of the prudent is to give thought to their ways,
but the folly of fools is deception.
9
Fools mock at making amends for sin,
but goodwill is found among the upright.
10
Each heart knows its own bitterness,
and no one else can share its joy.
11
The house of the wicked will be destroyed,
but the tent of the upright will flourish.

Reading this chapter in Proverbs, I pondered the scriptures as if I was looking at the face of Jesus, His image reflecting love and a need for some hammer and nails with a little mortar for my cracks.

I am under construction, we all are under construction. He wants to build in us a solid foundation. The rocks and bricks need to be in His wisdom and we must let Him put the pieces together. Yes, there may be cracks in the dry places but He wants me/us to trust He will patch the breaks and provide living water when we get parched in this dry weary land. Progress not perfection my fellow women and men!

Consider these questions for yourself ( women and men):
Do I build my house with wisdom or tear down those in my home?
Do I understand fear of the Lord is reverence to His instruction and refusal to live otherwise?
Do I lash out in pride using my words without thinking?
Am I an honest example even if it is hard, or do I find ways to speak little white lies to keep peace?
Do I think carefully before I speak or assume everyone must hear my opinion?
Do I make amends when I sin or hurt others ask forgiveness?

We all can think bitter, nasty thoughts, pessimistic attitudes pollute our minds and cause our joy to be snuffed out like the Light of our witness.

Matthew 5: 14 – 16
14
“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.

We want to have a tent of Light, His Light, filled to abundance. We want to help others to see daily life is hard but not impossible when We choose to walk with wisdom. When I seek to choose the better path, the life of those whose paths We cross can be effected for the Kingdom in more hope, love, mercy and grace.

Horse bits and Sparks

Relationship by MM

Is it me or do you feel as if there’s more grumbling and complaining lately than people speaking life and joy to each other? Scripture tells us the grumbling and complaining are not from the Lord and the more we grumble the more discontented and unhappy that we feel.

It could be in our community, it could be in the schools, in politics, and within the church, the attempt of dividing people who are created in the image of God is increasing. Can you relate? It is our own selfish nature that wants to be heard, or have the last word. We can speak without thinking and cause a forest fire.

James 3:2   Indeed, we all make many mistakes. For if we could control our tongues, we would be perfect and could also control ourselves in every other way.

Yes, another blog post on self-control, do we speak life or do we speak death? The tongue is to be used to speak life. In the Book of James, we are reminded the tongue has the potential to speak wonderful blessings or even curses.

James 3:7 - 10   People can tame all kinds of animals, birds, reptiles, and fish, 8 but no one can tame the tongue. It is restless and evil, full of deadly poison. 9 Sometimes it praises our Lord and Father, and sometimes it curses those who have been made in the image of God. 10 And so blessing and cursing come pouring out of the same mouth. 

The tongue is defined, in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary as, “a fleshy movable muscular process of the floor of the mouths..the human speech organ”, or “manner or quality of utterance with respect to tone or sound, the sense of what is expressed, or the intention of the speaker”. What is our intention when we speak?

In the Bible, James chapter 3 is full of wisdom regarding the tongue and learning self-control. It describes the rudder of a ship and the bit within a horse’s mouth. We have horses, most want to please their owner, however, they also have a stubborn streak and are powerful, majestic animals. The horse can be ridden in a halter when there is a great relationship between horse and rider. When the rider needs to ensure more control of the horse, be it a mountain trail, a cattle drive, or a new rider without a relationship, a bit provides pressure inside the horse’s mouth. Some bits are harsh and cruel while other bits are gentle in pressure.

Horse bits are connected to the reins, the reins provide guidance to the horse for the rider. As our kids were learning to ride, I likened the reins and bit to holding the hand of the horse through its mouth. Our horses wanted to please the rider, my daughter could ride bareback in a halter at times in the fields and at 4 H events because of their healthy relationship.

James 3:3 We can make a large horse go wherever we want by means of a small bit in its mouth. 4 And a small rudder makes a huge ship turn wherever the pilot chooses to go, even though the winds are strong. 5 In the same way, the tongue is a small thing that makes grand speeches.

But a tiny spark can set a great forest on fire. 6 And among all the parts of the body, the tongue is a flame of fire. It is a whole world of wickedness, corrupting your entire body. It can set your whole life on fire, for it is set on fire by hell itself.
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

The tongue is one of the smallest muscles in the whole entire body but it can pack a punch or a flame. Why is the tongue a powerful body part? It can hurt or I can heal. It can set your life up for good or create a forest fire, as James shared.

What is your tongue doing today is it providing hope, encouragement, love, teaching, or providing hurt, shame, and guilt? I am checking my own attitude. I want to douse the ashes of conflict and instead pour blessings and life into those I meet. How about you?

A wise elder, your parent or grandparents’ wisdom may have taught deep breathes and counting to ten as a calming technique. It is not just to see if you are smart in math! The pause allows you to reconsider future actions and words you might speak.

James 3: 13 - 18    If you are wise and understand God’s ways, prove it by living an honorable life, doing good works with the humility that comes from wisdom. 14 But if you are bitterly jealous and there is selfish ambition in your heart, don’t cover up the truth with boasting and lying. 15 For jealousy and selfishness are not God’s kind of wisdom. Such things are earthly, unspiritual, and demonic. 16 For wherever there is jealousy and selfish ambition, there you will find disorder and evil of every kind.


17 But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and the fruit of good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere. 18 And those who are peacemakers will plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of righteousness.


Being a peacemaker is possible if we stop the pride and selfish attitude (sin) and instead seek wisdom from God. It does not mean we let people step on us. We all need a little grace. I open my mouth and insert my foot often.

Wise tips: Listen well. Try to reframe the persons statements back to them. Clarify that you understand what they’re trying to say. Validate their feelings. And then answer softly and slowly. Be mindful of your words, this way you can douse the potential of a flame.

We the Messengers is an awesome Christian music artist because his lyrics give wisdom, he speaks disciplined in love, and this song is awesome!! It just reminds us to keep our eyes focused in the right space. “Come What May” is his most recent song. I saw him in concert, the artist is as humble and gifted as he sounds.

Enjoy your day and join me to stamp out a few fires by watching your words. 🙂

Guard

Fall sunset by Mary Mesikapp

Have you started your day stretching in bed and saying,” this is the day the Lord has made, I will make it a great day.” You flip on your favorite music, do you dance as you get dressed? Next, you grab your favorite beverage, jump in the car, and witness a beautiful sunrise or sunset? I used to work a lot of night shifts. Sunsets and sunrises would send me to work and bring me home with a smile.

However, my mood may change when I turn on the radio and am singing along with a song about broken relationships, depression, anxiety, and other topics that bring me down. Or have you walked into a room with a friend or coworker arguing? The next thing you know, you are feeling less joy. It’s like osmosis, the negative mindset is drawing away your joy.

Guard your heart! There are many voices and visions vying for your attention. It is a constant poke and prod from the enemy to distract. It can be culture, the newest app on your phone, a new entertainment app such as a tv or cable series, and even a new song.

Songs can have a steady, catchy beat, a melody, or percussion that lulls you into a cadence. Before you know it, you are memorizing lyrics and in the groove. Every time the song plays on your favorite radio or music venue you sing along.

You feel connected to the song it doesn’t seem to matter what is the message and thus you are a part of the community, you are trendy. Sometimes you pause to consider lyrics but then the beat picks up again and “who cares, no big deal, it’s just a song….”

Here’s the thing, I have a question, “if Jesus was sitting beside you as you traveled down the road, or danced away in your home, would you still sing the song?”

I find myself more diligent at considering lyrics lately after I heard words from current music. I was blown away at the top hits on multiple music genres. I don’t want to sound like an old curmudgeon, “the music of today, is bad.” Parents of generations past would complain about Elvis, the Beatles, and other classic rock bands were seen as evil. Parents wanted and tried to ban music.

However, Each generation has a need to express themselves. I get it! We have to think for ourselves. We have been given a sound mind. We must use it and not just follow the crowd.

2 Timothy 1:7
For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.

I think it’s important to teach my kids to learn to discern what comes from their lips in words or songs. I am working through the same needed character development. Yes, I say it again, I am a work in progress.

We must be self-controlled by the Holy Spirit with a sound mind.

Are my words bringing hope or hurt? Am I pausing before I speak? Am I considering the words in songs of my favorite music artists? Those lyrics can affect my emotions and my projection to others. They can speak affirmation or grumble. I believe you can tell by some of my posts, I love music and the messages that they can send to the listener.

Proverbs 4:23 NLT
Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.

I don’t want to deny my kids music but, instead, I want to come alongside them, teach discernment so they can consider what they see and hear, and does it bring life or death? Is it supportive of honoring men and women or is it describing destruction, abuse, and addiction potential?

It is too easy to become desensitized by the beat of a song. When we dismiss the importance of what we say or in this case sing, we become less bothered by the content.

Does the song edify or honor humans created in the Image of God or demean and insult? It is a choice to make. We can change the radio station or choose different songs on our music app. In our present day, we have options to make our own playlists.

Bad character corrupts even in a song. If we sing about the abuse of women or the joy in alcohol and hooking up, we demean and dishonor the purpose of our fellow humans. God wants each of His children to be loved and respected.

1 Corinthians 16:13-14 NLT
Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous. Be strong. And do everything with love.

Music, movies, and yes, even, the news can suck the life out of you. You can choose what fills your mind, your ears, your eyes. Guard your heart! Let your words and songs be filled with life.

Psalm 141:3 NLT
Take control of what I say, O LORD, and guard my lips.

Our Children

Amy Carmichael was a 19th century missionary from Ireland. Amy opened an orphanage at the age of 28. At this time, women were not on the mission field alone. She loved children and sacrificed her life by serving India’s children. She felt the call of God and left her home of comfort to make a difference.

God delights to meet the faith of one who looks up to Him and says, “Lord, You know that I cannot do this–but I believe that you can!” -Amy Carmichael

Modern day parenting is a challenge, however, Amy was a single woman and God used her in a mighty way. Her quote showed what can happen when you trust God, we are called to speak truth and share our faith in Jesus with our own children. We are called to trust God with the unknown. God calls parents to teach their children His ways. They must love God with all their heart, soul, and strength. They must see these actions in you. Our actions speak louder than words.

Deuteronomy 6: 5 -7 
5 And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. 6 And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today.

7 Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up.

We are called to share the Word of God, found in the Bible, it is wisdom for life. It is our most important responsibility to our child as their parent. I love Proverbs 4, the entire chapter is filled with instructions for parents. We must teach our children to guard their hearts, it is the wellspring of their life. It is the place where purpose flows.

Proverbs 4 :20 -23 
My child, pay attention to what I say.
 Listen carefully to my words.
21 Don’t lose sight of them.
 Let them penetrate deep into your heart,
22 for they bring life to those who find them,
 and healing to their whole body.

23 Guard your heart above all else,
 for it determines the course of your life.

For over 10 years, I felt called to speak about injury prevention, alcohol, drugs, preventable occurrences as a trauma nurse. I cared for many traumatic injuries that were preventable from motor vehicle crashes, motorcycle crashes, alcohol and drug overdoses, etc. I became a public speaker on behalf of other emergency department and trauma nurses. I shared real stories with other people’s children from middle school through high school. My key focus was to tell them that their lives are filled with purpose and God has plans!

God gives each one of us, created in the Image of God, a specific purpose. It is our job, as we live on this planet, to seek to understand who our Creator God called us to be. Our gifts can be hidden as we move day to day, or our gifts can be something that shined since we were young. Either way, there is a great calling on our life. Our choices can detour the end result, but life is not a straight path.

We can have pauses and starts, challenges can give us the opportunity to turn back to God if we have left the path with Jesus. Challenges can give us an opportunity to humble ourselves return to Jesus and choose a better course in the future. We have a God (Jesus, His Son) who walked this planet. He understands our human condition of emotions, impulses and pain. Matthew 4 describes Jesus being tempted by the devil in the desert multiple times. Jesus stood firm with the Word of God. Consider checking on this amazing chapter of scripture.

Jesus took on all our sins, because He loves us that much. If we did not have a loving father on earth it can be hard to believe this truth. Jesus died a sinners death by taking on all the sins of the world for love. He gives us mercy and grace, and cheers us on as we do over our life connected to Him.

John 3:16   “For this is how God loved the world: He gave[g] his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. 17 God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.

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I heard this beautiful song today at a meeting, “For Our Children, words by Amy Carmichael and Charlotte Ryerson. God calls parents to pray and praise Him. Use this song as a love note for your children to Jesus, I share the lyrics here:

For Our Children (Words by Amy Carmichael and Charlotte Ryerson, music by Charlotte Ryerson)

Father, hear us, we are praying,
Hear the words our hearts are saying,
We are praying for our children.

Keep them from the powers of evil,
From the secret, hidden peril,
Father, hear us for our children.

From the whirlpool that would suck them,
From the treacherous quicksand, pluck them.
Father, hear us for our children.

From the worldling’s hollow gladness,
From the sting of faithless sadness,
Holy Father, save our children.

Through life’s troubled waters steer them,
Through life’s bitter battle cheer them,
Father, Father, be thou near them.

Read the language of our longing,
Read the wordless pleadings thronging.
Holy Father for our children,
And where’er they may abide,
Lead them home at eventide.

We come boldly to Thy Throne,
all our hope in Thee alone
Let them see Thy cross and come,
let them glorify Thy Son
in Jesus’name amen 

©Charlotte Ryerson 2014
Amy Carmichael’s 19th century prayer for the children of the Dohnavur Fellowship in India.

In this time of crazy cultural strife, we need to lift up our children to the throne room of God. We can praise the Lord as we lay our children in His strong, scar-filled hands. He loves them even more than we do, after all He created them.

He has a purpose for their lives. If we, as parents or adult family, can release our grip on their hands, then maybe they will be able to reach for the hand of Jesus.

Jesus has transforming power. He can bring hope in a storm. He can heal all the wounds whether spiritual, psychological and even physical. He is the Ultimate Healer.

Let go and let God! Father God, help our children to achieve the purposes that you call them to become.

And for those who do not have children in a biological or adopted way just yet, I totally understand. I was infertile for ten years before I was blessed through adoption.

God calls you to pray for His children. His children are in your community, at the grocery store, the coffee shop and as you walk down a street.

Get to work and pray for His people. May God richly bless your day!!