All About How You Rock

You rock - Allume

Let’s do something fun today. Let’s celebrate our gifts and talents and what makes us unique as bloggers.

We tend to beat ourselves up for what we don’t do right, don’t accomplish and haven’t  yet achieved.  Sometimes we beat ourselves up so much that we are paralyzed with fear to even take a step. I’m guilty of this very thing.

I have far more things on my to-do list for my blogging than I have actually achieved.  I have unwritten ebooks in my head and widgets to install and posts left half written in my drafts. But today, as I was thinking on these things and starting to get a little depressed, I was reminded that I need to take my thoughts captive.  God knows my limitations and most of these ideals are my own and not pressure that He puts on me.

Let’s allow ourselves to think today about how far we’ve come and what we have learned and achieved.

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. Psalm 139:14

Let’s praise God for how fearfully and wonderfully we are made. For our uniqueness and the way He weaves our stories together for His glory.

Because the truth is that YOU ROCK! There is no one else exactly like you. No one else has lived your life, walked in your shoes and has truth to tell in the same way that you do.

Your blog? It’s awesome! It’s a reflection of you and that is beautiful. Even if you have things to polish up, look for the beauty where it is right now.  It’s a process and I guarantee you that being grateful for where you are at each step of the way will get you farther than beating yourself up ever did.

Speak kind words to yourself today.  Go ahead.  Tell us something absolutely amazing about you and your blog today!  We can’t wait to hear and celebrate with you!

An Invitation to Dream

An invitation to dream

I want to invite you to dream with me for a few moments.  Isn’t that what God does for us?  He asks us to dream with Him. He places longings and desires in our hearts along with giftings and talents from a very young age. He speaks life to those things by giving us dreams that line up with His heart for us and our calling. 

All of our dreams are different. Often times our dreams are shaped by the things we go through and suffer through.  A mother who has lost a child and has been through the grieving and healing process may long to take other moms in the same boat by the hand and walk with them on their healing journey.  A daughter who has suffered abuse at the hand of a man and who has found truth that sets her free may dream of sharing that truth with troubled young girls everywhere. A woman who has had such low self esteem and been in so much bondage all of her life but found freedom may not be able to stand the fact that others are in bondage and long to share truth with them.  A mom who has struggled with believing she is a good mom but has begun to believe what God says about her may want every other mom to know that they are good moms too.

What is the dream in your heart?

Is it a dying ember because you haven’t seen anything happen with it? OR is it a raging fire because you are so passionate about this calling placed inside of you?

Why are we given dreams? Is it so that we can be beaten up every time we don’t measure up? Or suffer comparison every time someone else seems to be doing the very thing we thought we were supposed to do?

No, I am convinced that our dreams are given to us and consume us so that we will partner with God and pray to see them come to life.  We have a choice, we can dream with God, become overwhelmed attempting to make things happen, which almost always causes our dreams to fade or means that we are doing them on our own. OR We can dream with God and in the waiting we can pray.  Every time your dream tugs at your heart you can talk to the One who planted the dream (His dream) in your heart in the first place. Pray, seek Him first and wait.

Imagine if every time you thought about your dreams you asked God for wisdom, provision, to open doors and move on hearts.  How many dreams would we begin to see come alive if we took our concerns, worries and even comparisons to to the Dream Giver and Way Maker?

Let’s awaken some dreams today shall we?  Think about what moves your heart the most.  What have you been passionate about seeing change?  Now close your eyes and imagine what it would be like if that problem was overcome.  Not just moved a little but completely overcome?  How mighty a force for God would we be if that thing was eradicated?

Let me share mine with you to get you started. One Sunday at church I sat in the balcony and looked out over the crowd. I seemed to have eyes only for the women there.  In the past I have suffered loneliness, rejection and hurt by women in my life and God has healed my heart and given me a dream to see women set free and loving one another deeply. On this night in particular God was breaking my heart for women who were broken, needy and lonely.  I heard Him whisper in my heart “Imagine if they all walked in freedom?  What kind of impact would they have for My kingdom?”  I caught my breath and allowed myself to dream that dream with Him. “What if they ALL…”  Not just some of them but all of them, God’s girls, walked in wholeness, freedom, and love?

That’s God’s dream and He invited us into it. His heart is for ALL of whatever He has put on your heart to change.  Not some of it but all.  He calls us into His great plans and invites us to pray in the waiting to be made ready, strong, humble, and brave. 

Imagine if we all began to dream our dreams with Him, pray in the waiting and taking the steps He tells us to take?  I believe we would then begin to see the ALL.  We are an army of dreamers and we can raise up an army of healed, set-free, truth seekers that will continue to change our world and dream with God.  Are you with me?

Share with us today the dream in your heart.  Is it an ember or a roaring flame?  Can you imagine what it would be like if all of those people were walking in freedom? Let’s encourage one another to dream, pray and do today!

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Getting Back on Track When You’ve Lost Your {Blogging} Way

Getting back on track when you've lost your {blogging} wayMost often we start blogging because we feel called to it and the work of it is fun. But sometimes life gets busy and time becomes precious and blogging begins to feel like work. Bloggers can burnout too.  Let’s chat about getting back on track when you’ve lost your blogging way.

I seem to go through seasons with blogging.  I will keep my goals and vision right in front of me, they energize me and I go after them with full steam.  Then life happens and family comes first and blogging loses its gusto for me.  Blogging can begin to feel like a chore and one that I dread rather than the fulfilling thing is started out as.

So how does a blogger get back on track?  Here are 5 tips to help you out:

1. Pray

Seek God first.  Pray and ask Him for renewed direction and ask Him if you need to take a break to rest. Psalms 139:3 in the NLT says:

“You chart the path ahead of me and tell me where to stop and rest. Every moment you know where I am.”

You may be in a season of resting and that’s okay.  While you are in that season you can still ask God for wisdom and direction for your blogging.  Ask Him to remind you why He put it on your heart to start.  Ask Him how to make room for it and to provide you with the time and resources you need to do it successfully according to His will for you.

2. Be patient with yourself and your seasons.

If blogging is not your full or even part time job, then chances are you are just finding small amounts of time to set aside for it.  Life can be unpredictable and get in the way of this time during certain seasons.  Give yourself lots of grace and don’t compare yourself with other bloggers who are in a different season. Perhaps their life gives them the time and space for writing right now and yours doesn’t. It’s always okay to learn from others but don’t follow them to a place that is outside of God’s will for you.  <—-Tweet this

Perhaps you could switch to micro blogging and share smaller parts of life with your readers by posting on Twitter or Facebook or just let your readers know that you need some time and will be back.  They are probably more gracious with you than you are with yourself.

3. Remember why you started

Answer this question: Why did you start blogging?  This will often help you gain perspective and recharge you to keep at it.

4. Take time to dream

Nothing gets me back in the blogging groove faster than spending time dreaming for my online space.  Grab a notebook and pen and write down what your dreams are for your space.  Don’t inhibit yourself in this.  Dream freely and wildly.  God is in the dream fulfilling business and can do exceedingly and abundantly more that you could ask for.  So dream, BIG, and then boldly ask Him for it.  If you’ve already taken the time to seek Him first then your heart is already in the right place.  Keep on seeking and keep on knocking and the door will be opened to you.

If you are at a loss then let God do the dreaming for you.  Ask Him why He has you blogging and if He would show you His dreams for your space.  Then ask that His will be done.

 5. Don’t aim for perfection, just excellence.

Sometimes we burnout because we aim for perfection.  Since perfection, or near perfection, is impossible, we wait to do anything we have thought of or dreamt of.  Instead do everything with excellence – do your best and do it as unto the Lord but remember that you have weaknesses, limitations and are loved just as you are.  Be okay with your limits and resources and move forward.

Do you have a tendency to compare where you are in your blogging journey to where another blogger is?  What one step can you take today to get back on the path that God has just for you?

Love, Kristin of The Beautiful Deep

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For When Being a Mom is Just Hard

Being a mom is just hard.

Having a newborn who sleeps during the day and wants to stay awake at night is hard. Having a toddler who is into everything is hard. Having a preschooler who doesn’t care that it was supposed to only be the “terrible two’s” is hard. Dealing with fighting elementary age kids is hard. Having preteens and teens with major hormone changes is hard…

We all fit in there somewhere and, no matter how good at being a mom you are, it is hard.

This isn’t about wallowing in pity for yourself or not being grateful for what you have but rather being okay with admitting that your job is challenging. Being a mom takes work day in and day out and it’s hard work.

But just because it’s hard doesn’t mean you are doing it wrong.

It can feel like your world is falling apart one moment when you’re tired and the laundry is piled high and the kids are running circles around you with boys being boys (all rough and tough) and girls being girls (all “watch me mommy.”). Or how about when your daughter hits your son (for the fourth time)? Or your teen gives in to peer pressure? Or your toddler peed on the floor (again!)? Or your baby just won’t stop crying?

They feel like failure moments don’t they? They rise up and dump on you with waves of failure.

But in the midst of all this hard stuff you are learning. You are growing. Your kids are learning and their little hearts are on display for you to see.

These aren’t failure moments. They are just the hard moments that need the good mom in you to rise up and meet them.

You are a good mom and you are anointed for the task of mothering. The calling, the anointing, is for the good, the bad, the beautiful and the ugly. It’s okay that it’s hard. It’s okay that you don’t have all the answers. It’s okay that there are moments when you feel like you have messed it all up.

You haven’t.

These are the moments, these desperate moments, when we need to hide. Not under a rock but under the shadow of the Almighty. Hide yourself under His wings and let Him have all of the hard of your day.

God takes hard, difficult, and trying and trades them for wisdom to know how to rise up and meet them. He takes weakness and turns it to strength. He shines a light on the hearts of our children in hopes that we will run to Him for the answers, for the strength, for the tools to carry on.

So, take a deep breath and don’t listen to the lies of failure when this mothering job is hard. Just run to your great God and listen for His “I’ve got you girl.” He knows it’s hard and He’ll supply you with grace, peace, strength, wisdom, joy and rest.

What’s the most difficult mothering challenge you are facing these days?  How can we pray for you as you seek strength for the journey?

 

5 Ways to Awaken Your Dreams for Motherhood

5 Ways to Awaken Your Dreams for MotherhoodDon’t we all long to be good moms?  Sometimes that is why motherhood is so hard.  If we do anything that seems like failure we loose heart and go through the motions without conviction and determination.  Nothing stifles your dreams for motherhood faster than percieved failure.

“You might as well not even try.  You just keep getting it wrong”

Ever thought anything close to that?  You used to dream of all of the great things you would do with your kids.  The list of what you would teach them was long.  Your hopes and dreams had no limits.  Your kids would go far and you would do whatever you could to get them there.

Maybe now you just make it through the day?  Perhaps you wake up and brace yourself for the day and still feel exhausted by mid afternoon?  You can barely think through the week much less to next year.

We grow weary and loose perspective {well, it’s stolen really}.  This is the battle we have entered.  It is a war for the dreams that God planted in our hearts for the children that He gave us.  Raising them up to be all they could be was His dream long before it was yours.  But, if you find yourself with your dreams crushed and broken by the overwhelming day to day, there is hope.

Here are 5 Ways to Awaken Your Dreams for Motherhood

1. Keep them in front of you

Think back to that very first day when you found out your were expecting a baby or decided to adopt. Relive the moments after your child was born.  What dreams were stirred in your heart?  What was alive and awake and fresh for you then?  What ways did you know that you wanted to reach their hearts?  Ask God to stir up the dreams you had and the ones He has for your mothering. Write those things down.

Years ago a friend of mine told me that she longed to have sons who were strong and godly men who were examples to the men in our culture.  I never forgot her declaration because it stirred my heart so much for my own son.  “Yes, I long for that for him!”  It began a thought and prayer process in me of how to get him to that point.  These are the types of things we need to remember, to write down, the keep in front of us and revisit often.  It would even be great to print these dreams out and put them in a place we will see everyday and can you imagine your kids seeing the things you are hoping and praying for them for?  It will teach them to hope and dream too.

2. Remember that the biggest battle is in your mind. Take thoughts captive

I mentioned above the failure-thoughts that we think.  Those thoughts are lies and we must take them captive.  God NEVER tells us anything that isn’t drenched in love.  He IS love and can be nothing less than all loving.  Even His correction is tender and loving.  So these failure thoughts, these “I’m so overwhelmed” thoughts need to be told the truth.  No you aren’t! You are an overcomer. Period.  You are never overwhelmed when you lay everything at the feet of Jesus.  He always overwhelms what overwhelms you.

Meditate on God’s word.  Find scripture that speaks to your circumstances and start telling those thoughts the truth.  Before long you’ll find that your mind has been renewed and transformed.  You’ll recognize those toxic thoughts more quickly and be able to crush them before they crush you.

3. Don’t grow weary in doing good

“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” Galations 6:9

This scripture stares at me and mocks me.  Don’t grow weary?  Ha! I’ve never met a mom who didn’t grow weary. But I missed the point.  God’s Word is telling us not to grow weary in dong good.  This mothering thing is a good thing! Such a worthy investment of ourselves.  God’s word also tells us how to not grow weary. By waiting on the Lord.  IF we wait on the Lord…every day {because God’s presence is like mana, we need it afresh every day} then we “shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” {Isaiah 40:31}

4. Gain outside perspective

I’ve been a mom for over 14 years now.  It can be so hard in the middle of the every day stuff to think of anything but the routine.  So very hard.  I gave birth to 7 babies in 10 years and I get how hard it is.  But now I am past the baby stage.  My youngest is 4 and I sometimes catch myself watching a mom with a fussy newborn, seeing her frustration and desire to settle the child and I just wish I could have spoken to myself in those moments of the earliest days.  Because it’s really going to be okay.  You’ll figure out what your baby needs eventually and they will calm and snuggle into you again.  There’s no need for it to be upsetting but, in the moment, it is.  I could use this example for so many things: for potty training, for spilled milk, for crayon colored walls, for bickering siblings… Sometimes we need to get away from it all and, get outside of our situations and see them for what they really are.

To have hope for dreaming and achieving those dreams we need to be able to stop every once in a while and think about the big picture.  It’s so far outside of the moments we get caught up in.  And we will get caught up in them but when we learn to escape them every so often and take time to think about them with fresh perspective it will begin to change how we handle those things in the moment too.

5. Don’t forget to dream for yourself

Dreams beget dreams.  Rekindle your own dreams.  Let your self go there.  Trust in a good God who is a dream fulfiller and seek His will for your dreams.  Dream with Him and trust Him when He shows you things that stir your heart but scare you.

When you begin to dream in little ways it is like opening up the flood gates.  Once you open the doors to dreams they rush in from all over.  Make time to dream for yourself and soon you’ll be dreaming with and for your husband, and your kids too.

What are some of the dreams for motherhood that you need to revisit today?  Do you have any other steps that you advise we take to awaken our dreams?

Dreaming with you, Kristin of The Beautiful Deep

Momma, You are Called to Greatness!

Momma You are Called to Greatness

I remember telling my mom, in the the shyest of ways, that I felt like there was greatness in me. I knew that God had a calling on my life and I knew that it was significant. That greatness is in all of us who have surrendered to Jesus. His calling on each of us is a call to live with His extraordinary greatness flowing out of us.

For too long I have felt desperate, overwhelmed and have moaned about how hard mothering is. I somehow lost sight of that greatness.

I hear God calling me to wake up. I sense He’s calling us all to wake up to greatness.

Yes, being a momma IS hard but we have a choice to quit moaning and being overwhelmed and saturate ourselves in the presence of God where He calls us to greatness in our homes.

We can lead our children not only to the cross to avoid hell but to God’s face so that they are changed, and the greatness in them is stirred up. So that they hear Him and see Him and KNOW Him. So that He stirs up callings and giftings in their lives while they are but babes and they take their generation for Him because they had a mom who led them to Jesus. A mom who sacrificed her own moaning for an easier life for crying out to God with her children for change. A mom who didn’t just bandage the hurts and wounds of her children but asked God to speak to them and waited on Him with her children in effort to teach them that this is what you do when you are hurt… you run to Him.

You have greatness inside of you. Now let it out! Stir up that greatness in your children by living a life knowing who you are and the using the tools & weapons that you have.

Be overwhelmed with Jesus and not with your circumstances.

Quit fretting about all of your mistakes and how to do it ALL and simply press in, with your children, to see the heart changes you long for, to see God’s power rise up in your home and in their lives.

Pray for their friends as if your children’s lives depended on it (they do). Pray for their schools as if revival is possible (it is). Pray for healing as if it’s yours (it is). Ask for the things you need and watch God move in power and overwhelm what overwhelms you. His greatness is ready – waiting – to rise up in you and do great things.

You are the key momma. You! Yes, all the little things matter and God sees you serving. It’s true. But don’t fall asleep thinking that you can just go about your day and there isn’t an enemy out there waiting and watching for a way to devour you and yours.

Rise up, oh woman of God. Rise up mighty warrior. You are called to greatness. You are called to be a GREAT leader in your home. You are a lioness who has cubs in her care. It’s time to get tough and dirty on your knees before God and even in front of your children. They need to see how you fight. They need you to show them How God fights for them, how He sees them. Quit waiting for something magical to happen in you. You already have everything you need.

Do you feel it rising? It’s called greatness. Now let’s walk in it!

In this with you, Kristin of The Beautiful Deep

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How to do What you are Called to Do Without Failing

How to do what you are called to doPhoto Source

As a blogger you can get pretty lost in all of the “to dos of blogging.” It’s a list that most blogging conferences, or blog posts on how to blog, confirm: promote your blog, use social media, comment on other blogs, guest post, connect, build relationship… It’s not a bad list and it does yield results but it may not yield the right kind of success if you aren’t supposed to be doing those things.

Over my 3 years of blogging I have watched blogger after blogger burn-out. They felt called to write at one point or another but then the demands of it took time away from their families and they couldn’t find the balance so they had to lay it down…completely. I admit to wondering time and time again if I should lay blogging down but every time I seek God about it I hear a clear “no.” I have had seasons of laying it down but have never felt the necessity of letting it go completely. However, It scares me, honestly, that there is such burn-out among bloggers, especially moms.

As I have watched so many bloggers struggle with the balance I could not help but be desperate for the answer to cure the epidemic. “God why do so many women struggle with this, myself included?” and what God spoke to me was a swift and absolute answer.

Only Do what I told YOU to do.”

Oh! I get it. Too often we get caught up in what someone else is doing and attempt to follow their path. Sometimes that is the right thing to do because that’s what God has told us to do. But sometimes it’s not. Sometimes we are just chasing the success of someone else. If you’ve been told what to do then THAT is your path to being successful. If you haven’t been told {or haven’t taken time to ask} please make that a priority before moving on.

When I think back to the beginning of my blogging journey I remember that God called me to write. Every day. He said “Write every day. Live your life and blog along the way.” He never said to catch up with Mrs. Jones who has been blogging for years. He never said promote yourself like crazy. He never said “you have to connect.” He just said “write.”

And I remembered how God is interested in our hearts. Do we trust Him with what He has called us to? Will we be faithful to obey? Even if it isn’t the way it looks for someone else?

Of course I had the potential to burn-out because I cannot expect that God will bless, protect and grow what He never asked me to do {also known as disobedience to what He HAS called me to do}. He equips us faithfully for our calling. We falter when we leave Him behind thinking that we’ve got it now and know how to do it.

{Please note that there is a difference between burning out because you are following the wrong path and God changing your path. And there is ALWAYS grace. I have missed the mark on this so many times and He lovingly brings me back to truth…every time.}

My calling may be different from yours. You may not even be called to blog. You may be called to blog and promote and work long hours to make money at it. You may be called to connect like crazy. BUT if you aren’t you should stop. I had to stop.

Let me leave you with a verse that God has been speaking to my heart over and over. Psalms 23:1 says:

The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want.

Another version says …I have everything I need. Is the Lord your shepherd? You have everything you need. Your calling is enough for you. But get this: in Hebrew the word translated “want” also means to fail or (cause to) fail. So you could also read it like this: The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not fail…

Make the Lord the shepherd over your calling. Do only what He asks you to do. Guard it and your time diligently and You cannot fail. He won’t let you.

Kristin Lemus
The Beautiful Deep

A Prayer for You

A Prayer for you as you live as light - The Beautiful Deep for Allume

My heart overflows for you today sweet Allume community.  Would you allow me to pray for you and sow a seed into your blogging and ministry?

Heavenly Father,

I pray for the precious woman reading this right now. I thank you that nothing surprises you and wherever she is in her blogging journey that you are pleased with her and love her fully right here.  Would you allow her to rest in You right now?  That you have her in this place and this online space for a reason.

Thank you Father, that this woman, this molder of words, is fearfully and wonderfully made.  I praise you that you have great plans to prosper her.  Thank you that you know her every thought and that you delight in the details of her life.

I ask that You would help her to know and understand more clearly the amazing depths of your love for her that she may live a life of confidence in You and the things you have called her to. Holy Spirit, would you speak to her right now about who You are and who she is in You? Reveal any lies she has believed about who she is and flood her heart with the truth of how you see her.

I ask that you would provide for her in every way.  Grant her unusual wisdom, abundantly clear direction and great vision.  Protect her and her family as she walks in this calling and takes back territory that the enemy has held. Arm her for battle Lord, but hold her tightly when she is weary from it.

My heart cries out for you to bring her the encouragement that she needs and the friendships she longs for.  Fill her life with sweet moments, reflections of Your heart, that bring her great joy.

Teach her to let You be her source so that she never runs dry.  Give her a deeper passion for You and Your Kingdom and drive eternity into her heart so that eternity would drive her.

Father, when she fails, help her to know that you You never do.  Then let her rest in your unfailing love as you hold her and wash her with grace. Be her strength in weakness.

Teach her to turn away from comparing herself to anyone else, for comparison is death to what you have called her specifically to do.  Help her to trust Your plan and Your timing.  Thank you that you never look at us in comparison with anyone else but that you see us as you created us to be: beautiful and holy.

I ask for a breakthrough for her this year. Because of Your goodness and her obedience to this call to bare her soul with words, would you tear down walls that have stood in her way?  Will you rain down your favor and blessing in her life in new and fresh ways?

And to you be all the glory and all of the honor for every crown she receives.  You alone are worthy of praise and may you be magnified and lifted up in her real light living.

Amen

With Love, Kristin at The Beautiful Deep

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Which Kind of Shy are You?

which kind of shy are you?

I spot her there, beyond all of the other women.  She’s pressed up against the wall in the corner of the room. She’s trying to not be seen but she stands out to me.

I wonder if the shy girl in the corner hanging her head is hanging it there because someone told her she’s not good enough? Perhaps she’s been told that her words don’t matter, or worse, that if she uses her words she will fail.

Then I wonder if perhaps she is just like Jesus? That shy girl in the corner with her smooth dark hair covering her face as she directs her gaze to the ground.

I picture Jesus in a crowded room of people, all of them desiring to sentence him to their own version of justice due to their feelings towards his radical nature. And I see Jesus there in a corner with his eyes lowered to the stone floor and His face barely visible through tendrils of hair. He wouldn’t answer their questions and they couldn’t figure out why he wouldn’t speak.

And I realize the difference between the two. The shy girl may be listening to lies or to past voices filled with sound waves that are sharp, pierce her heart, and leave wounds raged and deep.  But Jesus, sweet Jesus, He is only listening to His Father and waiting for when His Daddy says to speak now and speak this…

Which kind of shy are you? The one listening to your Father, so loving, to guide your words and be your confidence? Or the one bound by lies and so afraid to be exposed?

Jesus turns us into Jesus. When we spend time with Him we cannot come away the same.  Wounded one, let Him near. Let Him speak to those lies and those hurts and those “you don’t matter and your words are no good” comments. Then let your heart be shy only for Him while waiting for words to rise up and his instruction to speak {or write}.

How I Know That You are a Good Mom

The warm tears slid down my face and were sure to soak my pillow if I stayed there much longer.  I remember staring at the ceiling and not really seeing it, as the weight of my day seemed to sit on my chest with full force.

The day hadn’t been extremely hard. Just a normal day in the life of being a mom with 6 kids.  Lots of messes to clean up and little fights to break up and not getting much else done.

I felt like a failure though as I compared the to dos on my list to what I actually got done and considered that, even with the little I got done, I didn’t spend much time playing with the kids.

I’m a bad mom.

At first I just heard it in my head but it sounded right and I breathed it in and spit it back out. “I’m a bad mom.”

Then something happened that has forever changed my life and made me into the best mom ever. I heard these words:

“Who says you are a bad mom?”

It felt like a punch in the gut and a gentle hug all at the same time as this convicting revelation soaked in deep.

I say you are a good mom. I made you. I made you to be a mom and I declare that you are good and you are a good mom.  When you keep telling yourself that you are a failure and you declare the lie over yourself that you are a bad mom then you are agreeing with that lie and becoming what you confess.  Stop confessing that over your life!  Start confessing the truth, My truth. You are a good mom and when you believe it and start confessing it, then you will become it.”

Wow. All this time… all the frustration… It was all an opportunity to choose who I was going to believe and allow that reality, that truth or lie, to determine my course as a mom.

Now I know the truth and I walk in it {most days}. I am a good mom… because God says that I am.  He says that you are a good mom too.

You don’t have to do everything right to earn that title.  God created you and He declares that you {His creation} are good.  He also created this thing called motherhood and equips you with everything you need to do it well.  All you need to have to do a great job at it is the truth.

If you have believed that you aren’t a good mom, or feel like you are failing, can I encourage you to sit at the feet of the One who made you and ask Him to show you the truth of how He sees you? Soak it in.  Start to declare what He says is true about you and you WILL start to become it.  He doesn’t say you are perfect or that you do everything right the first time but that you are good.  Allow yourself the freedom to be weak {because that is when He is strongest through you} and walk in the goodness that He has called you to.

Have you ever felt like you were a bad mom? How can you start to walk in the truth today that you are good?

With love from a fellow good mom, Kristin from The Beautiful Deep

Something Much Greater Than Just You or Me

You stand at the edge and peer over. Your heart is beating wildly and you hesitate for just a minute…but you know…

…you know that you didn’t walk this thing to be silent about it. You know that this pain, this weakness, this dark place in your heart wasn’t just exposed and healed so that only you could be free.

No, it was for more than that.

So you stand at the edge and look over at this new territory. It’s terrifying. You see others ahead that are beaten and bruised, almost crushed, and they are weighed down with the same thing that held you. You have overcome by the grace of God but they are writhing in pain and held captive with chains too heavy to fight against.

But to pick up your sword and enter the fight is going to cost you something.

It’s going to cost you exposure. You will have to reveal that you were held captive too. That you were weak. You will have to do war again, beyond what you’ve already fought, for these who are bound in front of you.

You could back down. You could stand in your own place of freedom and choose to stay. It’s the safe place to be.

But you are brave. There is a fierceness in you and a call to greatness that you cannot describe. It sees the captives, surveys the territory, and readies for battle.

You pour your heart out with your fingers on keys and your eyes on the screen and you slash through lies. You tell your story and chains begin to loosen. You share how you were weak but He was So strong and the enemy is shaking in his boots as he begins to loose ground in this new territory you are taking. He fights back and fights hard but you know Who to run to when you are in the thick of battle so you fight on.

You are faithful with this truth that set you free. Now you get to be a part of a deeper work that sets others free when you obey the call to write and speak about the radical grace you have found.

Are you standing on the edge of a blog post or a conversation that is terrifying but also powerful enough to break chains for someone else? What will you do with it?  There’s new ground to be taken and we have a choice to join the fight and take it for the King of Kings or to be safe. 

So, when you write on your blog and share your heart {your failures, your weaknesses, and your victories} you are waring over lies that hold others captive.  This blogging thing is no measly hobby.  It’s a chance to be a part of something so much greater than just you or me.

In the battle with you, Kristin from The Beautiful Deep

A Different Kind of Affair

Being a mom is often a thankless job.  So much effort.  So little praise.  It doesn’t matter if you do it amazingly well.  It can seem like it is not rewarding at all in the moment of the nitty gritty, day-to-day, mommy stuff.

Being a good wife has its rewards but even then your effort can go unnoticed at times.  You are expected to do what you should and even the best intentioned husband may miss opportunities to offer his appreciation.

But blogging…oh blogging, how gratifying you can be.  I write a post from deep in my heart and there it is…the praise comes and encouragement follows.  I check my email to find a new comment about how great I write or how touched a reader was by my thoughts.  And my heart leaps and the appreciation makes me want to do this blogging thing more.

If I’m not careful I can forget the unappreciative kids and the husband who forgot to say “great job.”  I can let things go that I won’t get any praise for doing anyway and focus my time and energy on things that gain me attention and praise.

It’s the start of a different kind of affair but an affair none the less.  My heart and it’s affections are not where they should be.  I am doing what I am doing to fill a hole and a deep need in my heart to be loved, appreciated and understood.

So how does a blogger guard herself against this type of affair that surely will hurt her husband and children?  Fill up your heart with truth.  Sit at the feet of Jesus and let Him be your lover, your confidence, your motivation for doing what you are called to.  He is the only whispers of “great job girl!” and “I love you deeply, I see what you do”  that we ever need.  We could run forever on a tank filled up with Him.

If you are a wife you are called to put your husband on top of your priorities.  If you are a mom, your kids come next.  You are God’s daughter and when He is first it is so much easier to put things in the proper order.  Blogging comes somewhere down the line, only you can decide where, but please put it lower than your family and don’t let it become a different kind of affair.