Category Archives: Daily Encourgement

Life Moments #20 -A Lifetime of Photographs I Can’t Bring Myself to Look at…….

73725_1516395634223_3338784_n

The movie We Bought a Zoo is based on the true story of a man, with his two young children, who decides to buy — and live at — a zoo some time after his wife passes away. In this movie, there is a couple of scenes in which he begins to look at photographs of his deceased wife, but cannot……until the last time when he is finally able to scroll through each photograph, appreciating the memory that pops up with each one.

I used to wonder why he couldn’t look at the photographs. I mean, why wouldn’t he want to remember all the good times with her as she made her mark on their little family.

Right?

And now…..

I get it.

As I meander my way through my daily life, I know that Darren is gone. I know that I will never see him walk through my door again. My head knows it, but my heart seems to not.

A couple of years ago, I made some posts about my older son.

His proms.

His graduation.

Whatever it was, I was highlighting my oldest son.

I started to do the same with Darren. However, he wasn’t able to go to his prom that year so I didn’t get to post about it. And now, this year, he will not be going to prom. He will not be graduating at the end of the school year. He will not be doing anything else ever for me to highlight. So, this post was going to be sort of like a yearbook of his life, complete with pictures and stories of him.

However, I came home from visiting his grave, pulled out my photo books to start going through photos I wanted to use……

well……

As I said, now I get it!

I couldn’t even open the cover of the first book. I couldn’t even pull the book out of the box where they are currently stored.

I couldn’t look at the pages because…..

I am Not. Ready. for. the. Onslaught. of. Memories. that will flood my mind with each picture.

I sat there, looking at those closed albums that are tucked safely in the box and cried.

I cried for him.

I cried for my family.

I cried for my children

I cried for myself.

I. Just. Cried.

It’s not just the picture books because yes, I have all of those memories tucked safely away into the internal baby books, photo albums, children’s accomplishments and failures, baby years, school years, teen years vault inside the mommy part of my brain.

But they are there.

I don’t pull Darren’s out right now.

I can’t.

I can’t yet handle the emotions that will surely come. I can’t handle going through each photo to see so much of him, knowing he will never be here with me again.

My heart knows I can’t handle it.

My head knows I can’t handle.

I know I can’t handle it.

Yet.

Some day, when I pull out those photo albums I will carefully thumb through each one, I will relish every memory of him. I will laugh and I’m certain I will even cry. I will graciously smooth every crease so the photo lies flat and I will embrace every snapshot of him, welcoming each tear that falls because ….well what else can I do? Stay angry? Stay sad and in this place I’m in now?

But today…..

Today. Is. Not. That. Day.

So, I mindlessly put the box back away again.

Today is the day I will continue my life in fear of letting those raw emotions envelope me.

Because, it’s the only place I can handle right now.

Now, I am super thankful I have been a photo hoarder since I gave birth to my first child. I am thankful that I have all these pictures so when that day comes when I can handle facing my memories of him while knowing I will never get another memory with/of him, I can open those photo books.

 

 

 

Advertisements

Apologies

So often, in fact more-often-than-not, I hear people say:

Why should I apologize for what I’ve done……..

Let me tell you why:

We apologize not for the benefit of the other person. We apologize for the benefit of God.

Friends, we cannot control what others do. We cannot control what type of person another is. We cannot control the attitudes of others. We cannot control the beliefs of others. We cannot control A.N.Y.T.H.I.N.G. but

OURSELVES.

My husband and I are constantly trying to get it through our children’s heads that they cannot control one another, but they can control themselves. They can control how they react in any situation. They can control the words they say and the actions they take.

In today’s self-centered world,

Nobody

is made to take responsibility for their actions. For instance, my son was being bullied in school. When he finally stood up for himself, which progressed into a physical altercation between he and the other kid, my kid is the one who got in-school detention (during school hours he had to sit in the principal’s office all day). The other kid only got reprimanded. I understand a no tolerance policy in regard to fighting, but the school also has the no tolerance policy for bullying as well. It makes no sense! After this incident, my husband and I both had conversations with the principal of the school. Please understand I am in NO WAY condoning my child’s behavior. I don’t want children who want to handle their conflicts with their fists.

But, this post isn’t about how I want my children or how we are raising our children to be, it’s about the need for apology.

The world is such an ugly place that apologizing for the wrongs we do tends to make it a little better place, at least in my opinion. The apology itself shows that one isn’t just thinking of him/herself, but is, in fact, thinking of another.

Anyone can have character when situations and circumstances are in a good place. It takes real integrity and character to act with goodness in the face of negative or evil situations/circumstances.

It’s easy to say ‘I have to revenge because said person did this or that.’

It’s in the Old Testament – Exodus 21 – in which we return behaviors based on another’s behaviors. This chapter of Exodus outlines how we treat others. Back in the days of the Old Testament an ‘eye for an eye’ was perfectly acceptable, probably even expected.

However, the new covenant is one of love and forgiveness. Jesus spread the word of love to any and all who would listen. He also teaches actions such as forgiveness.

For instance, Luke 6:29

To the person who strikes you on one cheek, offer the other one as well, and from the person who takes your cloak, do not withhold even your tunic.

Jesus is not implying that we should or should not react out of retaliation. He is, however, inferring that we should return love in situations in which love was not given, such as slapping one’s cheek.

As you can see, when Jesus is going through His sufferings, He never once asked God to revenge His sufferings, but rather, He offered pleading on behalf of His crucifiers,

Then Jesus said, “Fatherforgive them, they know not what they do.”  – Luke 23:34

So, the new mantra should be:

I forgive you not only because I love you, but also because I love Jesus.

In the end, an apology is just a nice thing to do, but it is also a stepping stone in Your walk with Jesus.

We apologize because……..

we were wrong for whatever the action we took or the word we said. The motivation behind what we said/did may not be wrong, but how we handle the situation can be right or wrong. For instance, my son wasn’t wrong for wanting to defend himself. He was wrong in how he defended himself.

We apologize as……….

a sign of peace. I am a person who likes peace. I don’t care for drama or fighting or upset at all. I enjoy peace. But when I am wronged, I try ( I say try because I have a long way to go) to react with God in my heart. As I said, this doesn’t always happen because I do speak and act hastily. A lot! And then it’s me offering apology (peace).

We apologize because…….

we love Jesus and Jesus is the PERFECT example of forgiveness. Did He not forgive those who wronged Him? Did He not continue to love everyone despite the evil He endured?

Walk with peace today, my friends, offer an apology where an apology is due, and offer forgiveness to those who wrong you.

Blessings to you this day.

 

 

 

 

Life Moments #8: Compassion

My husband and I with our three youngest children (5, 4, 8 mths) took a trip to Vegas and then on to Idaho where we bought a van and proceeded to visit family in Montana before arriving back home. It was a nice, busy, chaotic trip as I’m sure any parent can relate to…..three children under 7 in the vehicle for hours on top of hours. Yes, not the highlight of our trip, but enjoyable for the most part, anyway.

32207621_10211697130088598_7541629960918663168_n

However, my real story starts at the time we left. All I could think about was time with my husband – a fleeting concept with seven children in the home – as well as it being my three youngest children’s first time flying. I was excited – six out of nine have now flown! Okay, it might seem silly to some, but since I didn’t fly for the first time until I was 29/30, their first flight was exciting and went incredibly smooth for our young children.  Another exciting part is that we got to see another part of the US. We live in small North Dakota with nothing but flat lands (in our area anyway), fields of golden wheat or green corn stocks as high as I am – probably higher – and cows, sheep, horses. Nice views sometimes, but views that may not seem that exciting to young children. Anyway, we like to travel and I was excited for myself, my husband, and our children to see a change in scenery. Las Vegas was full of desert vegetation that we aren’t used to seeing, lively sparkling lights at sundown, and beautifully landscaped roadways and scenic drives into the hills/desert that contain some pretty awesome rock formations and wildlife. My husband was excited to hike into the hills and to explore the differing landscape. As we drive through the mountains in Idaho, with their winding roadways, small mountain towns, and a rushing river that switched from one side of the roadway to the other, we discovered some hotsprings and many, many beautiful, trees that stood so tall over the sides of the snow-peaked mountain tops. If you’ve never seen it in person just imagine the mountains on the Coors beer can, snow-capped mountains – at least that’s what the mountains made me think of (not the beer, I don’t drink, but the image). Absolutely stunning! But, alas, that beauty was interrupted with my bad moods and the children’s fussiness at being in the vehicle for such long periods of drive time. We tried to stop frequently to stretch our legs and take in the fresh, mountain air, but it’s never frequent enough for children!

The tail end of our trip ended with visiting family in beautiful Helena, MT. Now Helena is a place to visit that I will recommend. It definitely has its’ share of beauty and peace. The best part was just seeing our family though as I’m sure most of you can attest to. When you haven’t seen family members in over a year, possibly more, it’s fun to see the changes in their children, but also to reminisce and collaborate with the adults. To see siblings, brothers in this case, interact with one another is full of wonderful moments.  This was the best part of the trip!

However, one of the most memorable points in our trip was driving in downtown Vegas, past all the sparkling lights and casinos, away from the hustle and bustle of the strip that boasted a wedding chapel on every block and back-to-back hotels fervently calling one tourist after another. The downtown area was whole different place, yet similar to the strip. The architecture seemed to play down quite a bit, but was still full of the culture of Las Vegas, interesting to say the least. It was here, however, in which we saw what is missing in our smaller part of the US, but is a very prominent problem in bigger cities.

Homelessness.

As we drove the streets of downtown Las Vegas, we witnessed one homeless alley after the previous. We drove down one roadway in which we discovered a village of homeless people with their tents scattered about under a roadway tunnel/overpass. When I saw this, the excitement I had at the start of our trip started to wane. I no longer saw the trip as all about my husband, myself and my children. It opened up the concern in my heart that seems so easily lost in our protected, coddled state that we live in, a state in which we very seldom encounter a homeless person, let alone a village of homeless people. We might have our run-ins with jobless individuals passing through trying to get back home or boom/bust out of state workers who’ve somehow lost their earnings trying to get to the next job or their home, but as for full-fledged homeless, jobless people who are truly at the mercy of the city or town in which they homelessly reside, it’s a rare occurrence.

IMG_0054

Witnessing such a life really tends to opens one’s eyes to the problems of this small part of the world we call home. It’s a problem that is world-wide, but until one actually sees it, witness it with one’s own eyes, it doesn’t seem to be an immediate problem, one worth the time and effort it takes to combat it. Unfortunately, driving in this area of town was the night before our plane was leaving. At a loss as to what to do, we did what we thought would be beneficial to someone. We had bought a few groceries for an all-day scenic drive that we took earlier that day, some stuff to picnic with and munch on while driving and exploring. As we came back into town that evening, that’s when we drove through that area of downtown. The next morning, as we got ready to head to return the rental car and head to the airport, we drove back to that area of town and gave the food we had left to the first group of homeless people we encountered. We had spoken with our girls that morning and they fought us because they wanted to keep their snacks. However, after some heart-felt conversation, they finally agreed to give the food away. With heads down and frowns on their faces, they walked with their dad to give their food away. They were not happy about it, but they DID it! To me, that’s the most important part of the trip.

They learned a concept that some never learn,

to give up what they want so others may have.

My husbands’ and my heart was happy.

There is no better way to teach your children compassion than to show compassion yourself.

A Little Faith Boost

I don’t know about you, but sometimes, my faith gets shaky.

I start to question…….

Everything!

When this happens, I delve into my prayer life. I say delve which may seem like I don’t have much of one, which is far from truth. I have a very strong prayer life, but when faith gets tested:

Stronger Prayer Sets My Sight Back on the Lord.

Through prayer, my frayed nerves get calm, my faith gets re-boosted, and I find solace in the quietness with God.

psalm 119 105

However, it’s not just prayer that accomplishes these feats.

Other ways that I can attain calm nerves, a boost in faith, and solace with God:

  • Spending time in God’s word
  • Plugging into spiritual music
  • Slowing down to enjoy the many blessings in my life
  • Having Bible study with my family and
  • Soaking up some of God’s beauty in the outdoors.

Since music tends to list highly for so many people as a mood-enhancer, here’s a 10-song list of my go-to music when my life is off-kilter and chaos is reigning in my home:

So, go ahead. Have a listen. I’m certain you will enjoy as much as I do and that you will find the solace you’re in search of. Of course, if it’s not solace you seek, these blessed songs will give you peace in your heart anyway.

Blessings to you on this beautiful day.

 

 

 

Life Moment #6 – One Tough Cookie #she’snocomplainer

I don’t know about you or you or you, but this little gal grumbles. A lot. Way more than I ought.

I don’t grumble about what I have or don’t have. I grumble about the daily doings of life. I grumble about pain. I grumble about sleep or lack thereof. I grumble about arguing children.

I just grumble.

And you know what my grumbling has done?

It’s taught my kids to grumble. Grumble. Grumble. Grumble.

Complain about this.

Complain about that.

Now? How do I teach my children to go without complaining and grumbling about their lives if I can’t even control my own grumbling and complaining.

Well, I guess I can’t because, as every parenting class, book, magazine, and the Bible says, children learn from their parents example.

Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord alone! Therefore, you shall love the Lord, your God, with your whole heart, and with your whole being, and with your whole strength. Take to heart these words which I command you today. Keep repeating them to your children. Recite them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you get up. Bind them on your arm as a sign[b] and let them be as a pendant on your forehead. Write them on the doorposts of your houses and on your gates.     – Deuteronomy 6:4-9

See?

As parents, we must be the shining example for our children. If not, how shall they learn? Do we want them learning about life and the world from the world or from God?

Every teaching in a child’s life begins in the home.

I want my husband and I to be their first teachers, the first people they trust. I want God to be their leader.

So it starts with me. It starts with my husband.

Therefore, I have been on a mission to way-lay some of my grumbling.

Okay.

So maybe, all of my grumbling needs to be halted. To start, I will daily remind myself of the following Bible verse:

Do all things without grumbling or disputing…… – Philippians 2:14

Don’t let even one rotten word seep out of your mouths. Instead, offer only fresh words that build others up when they need it most. That way your good words will communicate grace to those who hear them. – Ephesians 4:29

Which brings me to my point about grumbling.

My 5 y/o daughter recently had surgery to insert tubes in both ears as well as remove adenoids and tonsils. We were in the hospital on surgery day for about four hours to prep, to do the surgery, and to be in recovery for a couple of hours. Afterwards, she was released to go home for ten days of recovery on a soft food diet. She is home with me for the ten days. Today marks her second day after surgery.

Now, for the lesson:

She is one tough cookie.

My girl is definitely not a complainer. She hasn’t complained once.

About pain.

About being hungry – even though she’s barely eating anything!

Did I say about pain?

She’s not complaining.

About anything.

We could all learn a lesson from my girl about not complaining.

30706242_10211561054766800_5637344498137694208_n
#she’snocomplainer

 

Bitter vs Angry

I was informed the other day that I am bitter. I simply responded with, “No, I am not bitter. I am angry.”

Since that day, I have been thinking about these two words. I probably have been overthinking since that tends to happen with me, quite frequently, I might add.

But regardless, I have been thinking…..

Bitter?

Am I bitter?

Bitter is such an ugly word. When I think of bitter, I think of crab-apples, or even worse!, grapefruit!

I don’t want to remind someone of a grapefruit!

Or….

Am I angry?

Let’s see, bitter vs. angry or any variation thereof…..

Are the words used interchangeably? Can the words be used interchangeably?

According to Miriam-Webster dictionary is the following:

angry (adjective): (a) indicative of or proceeding from anger (b) seeming to
show anger or to threaten in an angry manner

anger (noun): a strong feeling of displeasure and usually antagonism

antagonism (noun): actively expressed opposition or hostility.

bitter (adjective): marked by intensity or severity
(a) accompanied by severe pain and suffering
(b) being relentlessly determined
(c) exhibiting intense animosity
(d) harshly reproachful, marked by cynicism and rancor.

Now that we understand, what the words and their variations mean, let’s understand the story behind what I was told.

The story -in short version- I have two teenagers that don’t belong to my husband. Their dad and I haven’t been together for 15 years – wow, it’s amazing that I can say a number so high in regard to my children! Unfortunately, these two teens were raised mostly by their dad because he had custody. Since our break-up, the relationship between he and I, for the most part, has been non-existent. He had custody so other than required visitation, didn’t try to keep me involved. I was young and naive and was fooled by him and the court for many years. One of the children is now old enough to be on his own. The other is almost there. Over the last few months the younger one came to live with me, got into some trouble and had to go back to his dad’s because of it. Now I could go on and on and on just bashing this man, but I won’t because I really don’t think I am bitter. However, I know I am angry. And I am hurt.

Does that equal bitter?

Regardless of the answer – for now anyway – I have turned to the Bible for my umm…shall we say ‘someone else’s choice of words’ dilemma.

The Bible speaks very clearly about bitterness and anger:

bitterness –
Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. See to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God; that no “root of bitterness” springs up and causes trouble, and by it many become defiled; – Hebrews 12: 14-15

Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. – Ephesians 4:31-32

angry, anger –
For the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. – James 1:20

But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire. – Matthew 5:22

Now, none of these verses really answer my question directly. However, each one is helpful to me.

In the end, I must admit that

Yes, I am angry, but I am also bitter toward my teens’ dad.

So, great, I remind people of a grapefruit!

I guess it’s time for a little heart to heart with God, for a little digging deep exercise that will end in a less bitter, angry heart and forgiveness because as the Bible also states:

Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, – Ephesians 4:26

and

And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.” – Mark 11:25

Therefore, down on my knees I shall go.

Prayers are greatly appreciated.

A blessed day to you all.

Create in me a clean heart, O Lord, renew a right spirit within me. – Psalm 51:10

Life Moment #5 – Visitors w/ a Lesson

There’s a country song that many of you may know aptly named ‘The Heart Don’t (Won’t?) Lie and then the old adage that tells one to follow his heart.

For a long time, I believed exactly that: the heart will never lead one astray.

However, through studying the Bible and attending church, my view has since changed. What you believe about the heart is truly dependant on the state of your heart. To explain: if you are led by the spirit your heart is right in the spirit. If you have a worldly perspective without a religious foundation, your heart will reflect that view. The Bible is very specific in matters of the heart:

Jeremiah 17:9

The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately sick; who can understand it?

or

Matthew 15:19

For out of the heart comes evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander.

When you delve a little more into the Bible and into your devotion to God, other verses start to stand out and make sense:

Matthew 5:8

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.

or

Psalm 51:10

Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.

Recently, I had some visitors. During our visit, we spoke of life and what the other has been dealing with. As one knows, it’s a cruel world we live in and life is hard, much more for some it seems.

Anyway, as I was doling out good-hearted, Bible-proven advice, it suddenly dawned on me how accurately I was describing my own life and how I needed to heed my own advice.

And, to connect with the intro, each story I told about myself or listened to from my visitors, aligned so perfectly to the scripture above.

It’s so easy to get caught up in our sorrows and in the sorrows of others, it takes a great amount of strength, with God’s help, to overcome the sorrows rather than wallow in them.

I do hope my visitors left feeling a little more confident in fighting their battles. I know, upon their leaving, my heart felt a little more comfort in knowing that God is with me always even if I don’t always feel it because as we know, feelings wreak havoc on us and more-often-than-not leave us feeling anxious, broken, saddened or the exact opposite. The only true peace we can ever acquire is God’s spirit within us. It truly is the state of our hearts that determine the outlook we have in this life.

Many blessings to each of you.

 

 

Sometimes the Answer is No

One of the hardest parts of a devoted prayer life and daily walk with the Lord for me is discerning between His will and mine. I battle inside to know if I am following Him or following my own selfish desires/wants/tendencies, but I fear – I know – that it’s the latter.

I read something recently about prayer and the answers we receive. I believe God answers our prayers. I have faith that whatever His answer is, it is the answer we need most. This doesn’t always align with what we want most. A thought to ponder when it comes prayers being answered is

God’s timing is perfect timing and may not always happen when we want it.

I question, when it comes to praying,  how to proceed when the answer I want is not the answer I get. I question whether I received an answer at all.

Within the last month, I found myself, my family, facing a very difficult situation, but someone I know and love with all my heart is smack-dab in the middle of the situation so whatever the result is, said person will be affected most. First I prayed and cried, then I worried and fretted, and then I prayed some more. I prayed very specifically for something concerning the situation because as the Bible states:

Therefore I tell you, all things you pray and ask for, believe that you receive them, and you shall have them. – Mark 11:24

However, I felt slighted because I didn’t get what I prayed for. God’s answer, at that time, appeared to be no, not right now. So then, out of selfishness, I became angry. I broke down and I blamed God. I was distraught. I was heart-broken.

I lost a little faith at that point, but looking back a few weeks ago on that prayer, I have since re-examined the situation to see that my prayer was answered. It was answered according to His will, not mine. I just wasn’t seeing anything very clearly and I wasn’t putting my faith, my trust in God.

So, in essence, His timing is not always my timing, but His timing is always perfect timing.

And to be the best Christian I can be, I don’t have to like His timing,  but I do have to believe that God is looking out for my best interest and have trust in Him.

God bless us all in our daily struggles.

 

Life Moment #4: Love

So ladies and gents, how many of you have ever looked or your spouse and questioned:

  1. Who is this man/woman I married? What happened to my real husband/wife?

or

  1. Wow! How blessed I am to have such a hardworking, devoted, loving spouse! He/she has blessed my life in countless ways!

If you’re anything like me, I would have to say that these statements/questions pop into your mind on occassion. It doesn’t matter which of the above thoughts you have so much as it matters what you learn from those thoughts in regard to your spouse and to yourself. Both thoughts (or something similar) is just one more key to unlocking the most priceless chest in the world, the heart of both you and your spouse.

I admit it.

Life hasn’t been easy. Marriage hasn’t been easy. Parenting hasn’t been easy. Some day, maybe…..hopefully.

However, through all the messy and through all the joy, one thing that has led me in all my relationships (friends, family, kids, marriage) is:

“Love covers a multitude of sins.” 

                                 1 Peter 4:8

Only six run-of-the-mill words, but when used together carry great weight.

I don’t know about you, but I forgive quickly. I forget quickly. I, more-often-than-not, forgive someone for his/her wrong before an apology is even offered, before he/she can admit to his/herself the wrong committed against me. It’s very seldom that wrongs done against me stay on my mind or even in my mind.

I like to think it’s because I choose to be over it, to love rather than be angry.

And I hope it’s something I can teach my children, that it can influence others to follow God.

May God richly bless your marriage.

 

Temptations and Self-Control/Discipline

When January 1st rolled around, I set a goal, as most of us do each new year in the form of a New Year’s resolution. My goal, I decided, was to give up Dr. Pepper. I wanted to give it up just to get healthier. I don’t know about you, but drinking six+ cans a day to nothing is a hard feat to master. At first, my resolve was up. I can do this! I kept telling myself. Over and over. Day after day. I can do this! And I did……..

For a few weeks, but then I started getting headaches which progressed into dizziness…..

and dizziness is terrible!

My resolve started to wane.

I was dizzy

All.

The.

Time.

I started complaining about the headaches and feeling dizzy, quite frequently I might add.

One day I decided, one Dr. Pepper wouldn’t hurt me so I drank a Dr. Pepper just to curb the dizziness.

Then a few days later, another.

And so on and so forth.

Finally, my husband decided its cheaper to buy a pack of them. At first I said no, not to do that because, you know, easier access. At least if I was having to drive somewhere to buy one I wouldn’t drink as many.

Regardless, he did, but he hid them.

My sons acted as Dr.Pepper police and would only get me, from hiding, one can a day. The oldest even told me one day, you’ve already had your one can for the day.

And then I found them!

It was over! Now I could drink them at my leisure. One a day progressed to three a day.

My point here: self-control, self-discipline.

Self-control/self-discipline is a very important concept for us to learn and apply daily in our devotion to God.

Didn’t Jesus exhibit and master self-discipline/self-control when He walked the earth? Did He not have plenty of reason to give in to temptation, while remaining faithful and strong to His purpose?

My husband and I have been hitting this topic pretty regular with our children, trying and trying to help them learn it.

But, it came over me last night, in a conversation with our 12-, 8-, and 5- year old about self control during their fits of anger, that I have not exhibited self-control in my cravings for Dr. Pepper. They witnessed that journey with me. They saw my struggle of going without. And they saw me fail and give in to the temptation.

Now, I ask myself, how can I teach and preach self-control, if I am failing to exhibit it myself?

It was a very sobering thought!

So, back to the drawing board I go.

……And God is faithful, He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. – 1 Corinthians 10:13

I have always believed not only do children learn from their parents but vice versa as well.

Never have truer words been spoken.

Happy parenting!