Category Archives: Homemaking

Don’t come down from that wall! Pt. 6

And I sent messengers unto them, saying, I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down: why should the work cease, whilst I leave it, and come down to you?” Nehemiah 6:3

We have looked at several things that are used to either distract or discourage us from this very high calling that our Lord has given us.  Things that would allure us to come down off of our God-given duties. Have you been able to relate to any of them?  I certainly can write all this from experience!  It seems daily that many of these things creep up to bring me down.

Today we are going to talk about a couple of specific temptations to distraction that are very prevalent, especially in our technical age.

The Telephone:

How many times are we distracted off of our duties and tempted to neglect them because of needing to just make one more phone call.  Or just as we were to engage in a heart to heart talk with our children, the phone rings.  Have you ever noticed how often that familiar ring will begin right as you sit down to family worship?  And it is not uncommon to have a quick call to a friend become a long, engaging conversation.  Even calls to “encourage” another sister, can actually be pulling us from our loved ones, if they are made at the wrong time.

I had a friend at one time choose to go on a friend phone fast for a while.  She realized that her focus had to be in her home and with her children.  I am all about Titus 2, godly mentoring, profitable phone appointments between sisters, but it all must be placed in its proper position so as not to sacrifice the best for a good thing.

But perhaps in our culture is an even bigger temptation to distraction is…

Email, Social Media, and ahem Blogging:

I love to blog.  I love the computer.  I love getting and writing emails.  I have a smart phone and use it often to check my Facebook.  But, let’s face it…it is a double-edged sword, isn’t it?  These things can be wonderful tools, but can get out of hand quickly.  Just one more email.  Did someone post something new on Facebook?  Did I get any blog comments?  Oh, I need to answer that comment quickly. And before I know it, chunks of time have passed by.  My dear husband is constantly reminding me that he does not want me neglecting the very thing I am blogging about.

I can be home physically with my children, but not home in my heart.

So how can we help combat these temptations?

~First, we need to pray daily for our priorities to be the priorities the Lord would have for us.

~Consider turning off the phone, or using an answering machine to screen calls during those critical times of the day, when mommy is most needed.

~Carve out time that you know you will have to do these things.  In my home, we have a rest time where if you are not napping, you must be quiet, or outside to give me some down time.  I have let that slip and have tried to enforce it again lately. During that time, I can rest if I need to, or more often I will be on the computer, blog, etc.  Also, my husband does overtime once or twice a week from home, after the children go to bed.  I also have that time to work on this blog or whatever I feel needs doing.

~Ask your husband if he would give you a chunk of time where he can keep the children when he gets home from work for you to have that long, engaging, edifying conversation with another sister in Christ once in awhile.

I am a very social person.  I am thankful for things like email and Facebook.  And I love blog hopping.  But, if it is not controlled we can be as the woman in the scripture whose feet are often abroad without ever stepping foot outside our home.

I am sharing these things because they are constant challenges to me.  So, let’s encourage each other to stay up on the wall today!  I would love to hear any of your thoughts!

My next post I will seek to wrap up this series in speaking of two last temptations we face that is common to most of us.  Stay tuned!

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Did you miss the first part of this series?
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5

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What’s in your wallet (er, couch)?..Link-up!

Written Saturday:

You have all seen that commercial,”What’s in your wallet” right?

It was a lovely Saturday afternoon and I don’t know about you, but by the time Saturday comes around you are sure that an atomic bomb went off while you sleep!  It used to be that on Saturday evenings when the little ones went to bed, Steven and I went into turbo mode and worked like madmen for a couple of hours just to restore an appearance of order.

Now?  Many hands make light work.  I gathered things that were lying around in the main part of the house and put them in the “manly room” where the bulk of the disaster already was and called the troops in!  Yup, especially when Dad is there to declare “Move, move, move!”  It becomes a game and everyone is scurrying like little ants.  Wallah!  It is straightened again.

Next, I can go to work doing the detailing I so enjoy.  And the vacuum comes out and Mom does her therapy (I know, I am a sick woman to love such therapy but I really do!)

And that’s when it happened.  I decided to clean out under the couch cushions (you know, that place where last years candy bar is still hiding and when your kids find it, you can tell them they can still split it…because there are so many preservatives in it, it won’t have spoiled.)

Really, it hasn’t been that long since they were cleaned, but the things down there accumulate faster than the snow up in the mountains of Kilimanjaro.

Then the thought came to me…what a fun link-up for those brave enough to really be honest.  So here is the challenge this Monday morning.

Go clean out under your couch cushions and tell me what is under there.

Here is my list for all to see:

Thermometer case

Playing cards

Pen/Pencils

Hairbands

A dirty sock

A baby outfit

One of my boys lost knives

and…

ahem…

A wet diaper…ewwww!  (Mind you, it was nicely wrapped up.)

Ok, your turn.  Leave me a comment, or link up!

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5 Minute Friday-Every Day


I am participating in 5 minute Friday.  Join the fun and blog hop to others doing the same.  The idea is to take 5 minutes and just write without worrying about editing…just letting the words flow from the fingers to the keyboard.  So here goes!

GO:

Call me over-tired.
Call it having my seventh baby
Call it getting older.
But I don’t have it all together.

I feel like I am missing part of my hard drive

Every day I have 7 hungry birds needing food for their bodies, nourishment for their souls and knowledge for their thirsty brains.

Every day they need it again and again.

And there is only one of me.

My son describes it as having 7 things to plug into only 3 ports in my computer.

Every day I am walking into a room and forgetting what I went in their for.

But…

Every day I am so abundantly blessed that it is overwhelming.

Every day I have so many kisses and hugs I receive.

Every day I am so very, very rich.

Every day I receive fresh mercies.

Every day I have a great God.

Every day I am being sanctified, made more like Christ through self-denial.

Yes, I am thankful for each day.

Every Day.

STOP!

Whew that was fun.

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Don’t come down from that wall! Pt 2

And I sent messengers unto them, saying, I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down: why should the work cease, whilst I leave it, and come down to you?” Nehemiah 6:3
As I mentioned in my last post, there are many temptations that we as mothers face to come down off the wall…to get distracted from our high calling.  Our work is of such eternal value that the onslaughts against it are many! I would like to look at two particular areas today that at least for me, and I am sure for others have been a challenge as a mother.

1. Discouragement/ Lack of Progress:

Do you ever feel like instead of going forward in the teaching and training of your children you are going backwards?  You have corrected for the hundredth time and want to give up? Maybe the area you had thought you had finished your training in raises its head again in your home.  Or maybe you realize that you have been working on the same character issues for years and see very little progress.   I know for myself, this can cause me to want to throw in the towel and sit down in despair and discouragement.  Seeing so very many issues that still need to be dealt with in my children can easily overwhelm me and make me feel ready to sink to my knees on the floor and cry for a good while.

2. Past Failures/Our Own Sins:

We have fallen on our faces, we have lost our tempers with our little ones, been impatient and cranky.  We have come down off the wall many times before, lost momentum and now are so far behind we do not know if we ever can rebuild.  We feel keenly our inadequacy and inability for such a great work as mothering is.  The enemy loves to whisper in our ear ” You are a failure, look at the mess you have made of everything.  What is different this time than the last time you fell flat?”

and he is right…

We are failures, we are nothing, we are inadequate…apart from Christ, that is.  But our God says,

“Faithful [is] he that calleth you, who also will do [it].” 1 Thess. 5:24

“I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” Phil. 4:13

What did Nehemiah do when the enemy was rising up against them threating to overthrow their vision?  They prayed and set a watch.  Let us raise our voices to the One who gave us this calling, who breathed life into these little ones.  He will give us the grace and strength and in leaning upon Him HE  is glorified.

The fruits of our labors may be slow in coming, but the Lord’s word will not return void.  We must press on and not grow weary.

“And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” Gal. 6:9

When the enemy whispers in our ears, we need to speak God’s word back to him.  In the psalms you see David talking to his own heart..

“Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance.” Psalm 42:5

His mercies are new every morning…so today is fresh start.  So love your babies, hug your child a little tighter, smile a little broader, and let’s pick up our wall building tools and get to work.

And believe you me…I am talking to myself…bigtime!


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My Cup Runneth Over

the day is rainy and drizzly

gray clouds, dreary skies

the house has clutter all around

paper, pens, books, toys

I hear children whining

the calling of “mama” swirls around me hitting me from all sides

multitasking takes on a new meaning as I try and handle many things at once

“watch you do cartwheels?” sure

“help you with math?” sure

“bandage your sliced open finger? of course

…and don’t forget the baby’s diaper

I hear bickering and am the referee…again.

my head swirls

I am so fatigued…

where do I look?

“I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.

My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth.

He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber.

Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.” Psalm 121: 1-4

where will I choose to look?

within or upward?

when I look upward I see…

signs of learning and vibrant life everywhere

sweet, beautiful children loving their mama so much they want to be with her

one brother making the other brother a gift as a surprise, which results in smiles and hugs

a daughter that shames me by her humble diligence in her daily tasks

sweet kisses, muddy toes, precious noises of joyful activity

siblings that can’t wait to have their turn holding and caring for their newborn brother

and the conclusion is undeniable–

truly, my cup runneth over

today, dear sister you have fresh mercies filling your cup

may you have a blessed day!

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Mother of Millions

This is a post I wrote on my more private blog awhile back… May it encourage you today.
I have been very blessed by the church family that the Lord has given me. Last night, a friend of mine gave me a “Mother of Millions” plant. As an encouragement to me after my miscarriage she had planted 6 little tiny plants in the pot to represent each of the children the Lord has given to me here on this earth. It meant so much to me for her to think of me in this way.
I noticed to my dismay this morning that in the transport home my pot had been quite disturbed and my little shoots had been uprooted from the dirt surrounding them. I quickly began to tenderly take each little shoot and replant them into the dirt, adding a little water to gently place them in their spots. I had to be very tender as I replanted them, being careful not to crush, tear or damage their little roots or leaves. I could not deal roughly or harshly
 in working with these tiny seedlings.
As I was in the process of doing this it came to my mind, am I as careful and eager to do this with my children? It is food for thought. Am I solicitous and careful over where my little children’s souls are at, if they are going astray or needing to be “re-rooted” somewhere? Am I careful as I am seeking to transplant them from wrong behaviors or thinking to not crush or break them? Do I hover over them with concern as I did these little plants?
It’s definitely a challenge for me and maybe it will be for you today as well.

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10 ways we can prepare for the Lord’s Day


Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy.

We have all learned this verse possibly since childhood when we memorized the Ten Commandments. But, how much thought do we give to the Lord’s Day in our homes? Since it is our Lord’s day, and not our own day it should cause us to rethink how we spend it.
This would include adequate preparation for that high day of the week!

“If a prince were to come to your house, what preparation would you make for his entertainment! You would sweep the house, wash the floor, adorn the room with the richest tapestry and hangings, that there might be something suitable to the state and dignity of so great a person. On the blessed Sabbath, God intends to have sweet communion with you; he seems to say to you, as Christ to Zacchaeus, ‘Make haste and come down, for this day I must abide at thy house.’ Luke 19: 5. Now, what preparation should you make for entertaining this King of glory? When Saturday evening approaches, sound a retreat; call your minds off from the world and summon your thoughts together, to think of the great work of the approaching day. Purge out all unclean affections, which may indispose you for the work of the Sabbath. Evening preparation will be like the tuning of an instrument, it will fit the heart better for the duties of the ensuing Sabbath.”

– Thomas Watson, The Ten Commandments

Here are a few practical suggestions for Saturday evening preparations for the Lord’s day…

1. Saturday night baths
This might go without saying but most children by the end of a busy Saturday have enough grime on them to look like something the cat dragged in. Sending them into the tub for a quick dip does amazing things to bring them back to the beautiful little children that they are.

2. Lay out clothes for the morning
If you can do everything from the outfits, belts, shoes, socks it makes the next morning so much easier!

3. Iron any clothes and shine any shoes that need it.

4. Check or pack your church bag (with your Bible’s notebooks, etc).

5. If you carry a diaper bag, refill and get it ready as well.

6.  Prepare your main meal for tomorrow. We eat at church and all share what we bring, so usually our dish is chicken that has cooked all night to be savory by the next day.

7. Set your table for breakfast the next morning. Last week we were so rushed that we had yogurt in paper cups and bagels for the children to eat on the way. If you have a long drive, this might be an option as well.

8. Tidy up at least the main areas of the house. Everyone feels better with a straightened up house. Set the tone for the day by having it as orderly as possible. When all our children were little, every Sat. night after the children went to bed, dh and I went through the house like bulldozers doing massive cleanup! Now that our children are getting older, they can all pitch in and it is so much easier.

9. End the day with family worship. If you know what your pastor will be preaching on, it is a blessing to read that passage and have some family discussion on it. You will be amazed at how your children will pick up things the next day. Sometimes our children will look at us knowingly during a sermon remembering what we talked about in that passage.

10. Go to bed at a decent time. This is one of our biggest downfalls. We tend to push it too late and are sleepy the next day. But, we cannot bring the Lord our leftovers.

Does our family practice everyone of these? No.  And some weeks we do better than others. We are constantly seeking to be sanctified as a family, just like you. But, even employing a few of these things will be a step towards the right keeping of the best day of the week!

So how do you prepare in your home?

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