To all the Mean Moms out there…Happy Mother’s Day!

There are two things that are guaranteed when you become a mother…

  1. you will catch your child’s puke in your hands;
  2. and you will be called a Mean Mom by one, or all your children

It will happen once, twice, or even more times than you can count. And if you have more than one kid, that can add up!

It will happen when you (gasp) say no to a request to attend a road trip with friends four states away. It will happen when you say no to buying the latest tech gadget, designer shoes, or you say no to a trip to the mall to buy whatever. It will happen pretty much anytime you rain on their parade by saying no. Because you are so dang mean, Mom.

It will happen just about every time they stomp off to their room, slamming the door behind them, because you have the audacity to say no for their own good. Geez, Mom.

>> Being called a Mean Mom is just part of the job of being a Good Mom. <<<

mean mom bad mom t-shirt

To the moms who don’t listen to what other moms say of their parenting style (or think you are a bad mom). We are doing what works for our family, not yours. And our family is the most important one of all. So back off, mean girl.

To the moms who have the guts to stand up and say, “Oh, no you don’t, daughter!” You are not doing that…saying that…or going there.

To the moms who make the hard choices about what to do with their troubled teen. Here’s to making heart-wrenching choices and knowing that in that moment your child hates you as much as you love them. And you do it away because that is mother-love.

To the moms who say, “no” when all the other moms said, “yes”. Because you are their parent not their friend. You know by saying no you are saving them from a potential bad choice or situation. Today they don’t get it, but one day they will.

To the moms who work two jobs or long hours so their children will have a better, easier life. Here’s to the moms who are making it work everyday and are exhausted because of it.

To the moms with mom-guilt. Oh, wait, that is all of us. Here’s to us.

To the moms who go find their underage-child drinking at a party, and drag their butt home. Because embarrassing them in front of their friends is the least of your worries.

To the moms who make the agonizing choice to let their child learn lessons the hard way because they just won’t listen to your advice, over and over again. Here’s to you who pray every night they will find their wings and soar. Before they go to jail.

To the moms who unfriend their ungrateful blaming-everyone-but-themselves adult child on social media because all they do is bad mouth you and your family. You may not want to be their social media friend, but you still love them.

To the moms who tosses their child’s bedroom looking for drug paraphernalia or alcohol. And find it. Then make the hard decisions to ask them to leave the house if they can’t abide by the family rules.

To the mom’s who stand by watching their child complete community service, all the while she will never know it is hurting you more than it is hurting her.

To the moms of my-house-my-rules. Here’s to the moms who have rules and follow through with consequences in their home.

Moms do it all at the risk of being labeled a Mean Mom.

Because we moms know that being mean is done for the love of our children, that, and…motherhood ain’t for those with a weak stomach.

To my mom, who had the courage to be a Mean Mom, and all my friends who care enough to be Mean Moms. Happy Mother’s Day! Keep being a Mean Mom!

We should start a club called the Mean Mom Society. We’ll get t-shirts made and everything. 😉

Don’t be Alarmed

Cross Easter egg

When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus’ body.

Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb and they asked each other, “Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?” But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away.

As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed.

“Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.'”

Trembling and bewildered, the women went out and fled from the tomb. They said nothing to anyone, because they were afraid.” (Mark 16:1-8 NIV)

I don’t know about you, but if I was the one standing in that tomb to find Jesus had risen, I would have been freaking out. I would have ran away, trembling, too.

Do not be alarmed, in other words, do not be afraid. In the Bible, “Do not be afraid”, and other variations of the phrase (don’t be alarmed, fear not, do not fear) appear a lot. One popular myth is that the phrase appears 365 times, but it is actually closer to 150ish times.

The fact is, the words “do not be afraid” appear in the Bible so often because it’s important.

Fortunately for us, the disciples pushed through their initial reaction of fear. They went on to spread the Word, despite the fear of persecution; and they had very good reason to fear persecution.

Today is Easter Sunday. Let’s take in the heaviness of that day. The day the women went to the tomb to find Jesus risen. There was fear, at first, then there was hope, and probably tears of joy , too.

Even in death, Jesus is teaching us a lesson. Push through the fear because on the other side there is hope. There is also faith, comfort, and courage.

The Lord our God is with us. Do not be afraid.

*Originally posted April 5, 2015

Sermon Notes Sunday: Lies in our Head

Speaking of Satan…”…He was a murderer from the beginning, refusing to uphold the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, because he is a liar and the father of lies.” John 8:44

“The battle for your soul is in your mind.” Pastor Kyle

Satan will use anything and anyone to engage you in a lie to mess with your head.

  • “…you’re not a good mom.”
  • “…you’re a terrible daughter.”
  • “…you’re too fat to wear that.”
  • “…you’re not worthy of _______________.”

Satan’s lies tempt us to take our eyes off of God’s goodness.

  • We are the mom He made us to be.
  • We are His loved daughter.
  • We are wonderfully made by the Artist of the universe.
  • We are worthy, because He made us worthy in His eyes.

Genesis 3:1-5: “Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the woman, “Indeed, has God said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’?” 2The woman said to the serpent, “From the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat; 3but from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat from it or touch it, or you will die.'” 4The serpent said to the woman, “You surely will not die! 5“For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

 

truth seeker Genesis 3

Be a Truth Seeker.

Don’t engage in a dialogue with Satan.

Eve engaged in a dialogue with Satan. Instead of ignoring him, she questioned God’s goodness. She questioned the truth. Instead of trusting God, she listened to the serpent; she was swayed by his deception. She let him get into her head. She entertained the idea that maybe God hadn’t been truthful with her. She believed the lie that she could do it better. That she could be like God.

Don’t take the bait.

Satan makes the lie look good or sound reasonable. Like, telling Eve that once she eats the fruit her eyes will be opened; she will be like God. Sounds good, right?

What if your child is having a hard time in school, making bad choices, throwing toddler tantrums in the middle of Target, then, obviously you are a bad mother. Sound reasonable? Of course not.

That is one lie Satan tells us to mess with our head. And he will use whomever or whatever he can to help fuel his lies. One of his favorite tactics is using other people to reinforce the lie. Gossip is a good example. By using others to spread gossip or say mean things about us, it makes it harder for others, and ourselves, to believe the truth. Satan is a user.

Our response to the lies is what will make or break us.

When we believe the lies we are filled with guilt, shame and unworthiness and even bitterness. We then try to hide our true selves from the world and God. Adam & Even hide from God when they realized they were naked in the Garden. (Genesis 3:8)

We might hide ourselves from God by doing good deeds, as if doing good will cover up the doing bad, or the lies we believe that make us bad. We hide our true selves from others by pretending we are someone we are not: the perfect homemaker; the tireless volunteer; the always happy, never depressed wife…you get the idea.

Remember, God finds us even after we’ve taken the bait and believed the lies.

Genesis 3:9: “Then the LORD God called to the man, and said to him, “Where are you?”

Where are you?

God looks for us. He seeks us out. If we are willing to accept, He is there. Once we say, “Here I am,” he covers and comforts us. God covers our guilt and shame, just as he did for Adam & Eve when He clothed them in the Garden after they sinned and realized they were naked. (Genesis 3:21) He was there.

He did it with Jesus’ blood on the cross too. We are covered. He said, “For this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.” (Matthew 26:28).

We are covered.

  • The truth is we don’t need to believe Satan’s lies anymore.
  • He forgave and will continue to forgive us.
  • God comes after us even when we mess up.
  • He is a loving Father who always has a spare room for us when we come running home after failure.

Maybe I want a quiet, simple life

Maybe I don’t want to participate in the rat race, the breaking of the glass ceiling, or climbing the corporate ladder.

Maybe I don’t want to be so busy that I wear busy like a badge of honor.

Maybe I don’t want to keep up with the Jones’, live beyond my means, or have a big house that I will have to clean.

bibles

Source: pexels.com

Maybe I want the world to slow down, stop pressuring me to do, go, get.

Maybe I don’t have a desire to travel to Africa, Haiti, or another far-reaching place to build a church, hospital, or school; but I have a heart to fill bags of food for various food drives & food banks in my city.

Maybe I want to plant Small Seeds by campaigning for Bible donations in Asia, give money for a sewing machine fundraiser, or donate time and money for leukemia research, and blog to inform others about women’s plight in parts of the world.

Maybe I want a life where I have time to binge watch the Netflix show of my choosing and not feel guilty about it.

Maybe I want to buy a nice car but not one that is like a mortgage payment.

Maybe I won’t change the world but I want to change my little world with simple, random acts of kindness.

Maybe I want to work a creative job I like, that is valuable, but doesn’t literally save lives.

Maybe I want to turn my phone off, or not answer a text, just for a little while.

Maybe I want to steal quiet evenings in the backyard with my growing kids and kind neighbors instead of dining in fancy restaurants with too many forks on the table.

Maybe I don’t want hundreds of Facebook friends; instead I want to make real connections with a few like-minded, simple living women, and that’s enough.

Maybe I don’t want my kids enrolled in endless activities and sports training programs; instead I want my kids to have a quiet childhood, free of chaos, drama, and strive, while playing sports or doing activities they love, that encourage them to do better.

Maybe I want to raise good human beings with love, faith, and hope rather than raise children who get into Harvard…although they can do both. It’s about balance.

Maybe I want a quiet, simple life. Is that so bad?

Words for thought

It’s been a crazy, stress-filled week and a half. I am trying, really hard, to stay calm. Last week ended with finally finishing up a huge project at work that had my anxiety monster going crazy. I didn’t get fired (yet) because, like I said, I am crazy. I mean, my anxiety monster  is crazy…I might be a little.

Then, capping off the week, a car accident left mine and Alex’s nerves fried. My new Jeep, that I got in November, is possibly totaled. It’s a blessing no one was seriously hurt. She is enrolled in driving school and this accident, in which someone blew through a red light causing us to smash into his car, has got her even more aware of safe driving. Which could be a silverlining in the worst way.

I could use some calm. I chase calm like an elusive butterfly, just when I think I have it, the calm ducks and weaves, fluttering out of my grasp.

Words, quotes make a difference to me. They help me put things into perspective and remind me to breathe. Here a few quotes (and totally random photos) that remind me to put stress and anxiety into perspective. Because it’s only a moment, woman! Relax and eat a brownie.

“Just because everything is crazy around you, doesn’t mean it has to be crazy within you.” Courtney Carver — Be More with Less

“So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.” — Matthew 6:34NLT

“It’s not stress that kills us, it is our reaction to it.” –- Hans Selye (#truth)

“If you treat every situation as a life and death matter, you’ll die a lot of times.” — Dean Smith

“Don’t underestimate the value of Doing Nothing, of just going along, listening to all the things you can’t hear, and not bothering.” — Winnie the Pooh

And…”Donuts just make you happy.” –Parker

Okay, that last one has nothing to do with stress but when my girl told me that I couldn’t help but smile. Have a blessed and stress-less weekend!