Let’s Pray for Kara Tippets

A few weeks ago I was driving to pick Anya up from school and I heard a broadcast on Focus on the Family that captured my heart and broke it at the same time. The broadcast featured Kara Tippets a wife and mother of four who has terminal cancer. Listening to her speak about her journey, and her dependence on grace and God made me slow down for a minute and think about what really matters in my life… God, my family, my health and the time I spend with my loved ones. Kara is incredibly courageous and faithful. Grace has met her in so many ways that she has been gracious enough to share with others.

Her pain is increasing and the cancer is spreading more aggressively in her bones. Today she is getting a surgery and I just ask you to please pray for her and her family during this time. Please take a minute and visit her site, Mundane Faithfulness and look at her Facebook page she will inspire you with her faith, wisdom and light. When you read how grace has met her in so many ways your faith will be renewed! Kara is such a gift and a blessing to all those who know and don’t know her. I’m praying for her and her family and I hope you lift her up in prayer as well.

 

Kara and her Husband

Kara and her Husband

My Prayer for All You Mommas Who Are Missing Their Babies This Holiday Season

Yesterday I wrote a post about having the Co-parenting holiday blues. And tonight I just want all you mommas out there who don’t have their kids this holiday to know that I empathize with you and I understand the pain you feel when your child walks out the door, because I feel that hurt too. For some of you this may be the first holiday you are spending without your child and my hurt is especially tender to you this evening. Just know that God knows your pain and he wants to wrap you up in his love and take away the loneliness and pain you are feeling in your deepest places. I am saying a prayer for all of you out there tonight that God gives you and your children peace. When your heart is hurting it is hurting and nothing can heal that except for God. So ladies, here is my prayer for you:

Heavenly Father, I know that you are with each and everyone of us. You know us so well because you created us, you know every hair on our head and you know when our hearts are swelling with pain. Father, I ask that you surround every momma tonight who is missing her baby with your all encompassing love. I humbly pray that you fill the void we are feeling in our homes and our hearts this holiday season. God so many of us are hurting and although we want our children to spend time with their families, we  miss them. Lord you are the ultimate healer who can mend the deepest wound and so I ask you to touch my sisters out there tonight who need your healing hand. If their children are experiencing any sadness, please restore in them a peaceful heart. God take each of these mother’s hearts and hold it close to you let them know that you are there for them in every circumstance and will never forsake them. Please take away the loneliness they are feeling and let them feel your holy presence and light in their life. In Jesus’ name… Amen.

The Poll Results Are In! You All Are Some Praying Parents!

It looks like 100% of you pray with your kids before school! Well, thank God for all of you praying mommas out there. Our kids need all the prayers they can get and they need to learn that God is available 24 hours a day! This is how we begin to teach our kids the power of prayer by doing it with them! Remember the greatest legacy is a spiritual one and teaching our children to develop their own relationship with God is invaluable! When we pray with our kids we are building a foundation for them that is long lasting and meaningful! We are accountable to God in how we raise our children, we may not be able to control what happens when they live our nest but we can give them the spiritual tools they need and pray for God to take care of the rest!

Praying Into 2013

With 2012 coming to an end shortly, I’ve been reflecting on my spiritual walk with Christ. I’ve asked myself questions like:

  • Am I applying the scriptures to my daily life?
  • What is my real intimate relationship with God like?
  • Is my prayer life what I want it to be?
  • Am I spiritually disciplined?
  • Am I setting a good spiritual foundation for Anya?
  • Am I as involved in church as much as I want to be?
  • Have I shared my love for Christ with others?
  • How can I work for God’s purpose for me?
  • Do I pray for others on a consistent basis?
Some of these areas I feel like I do well in, such as setting a good spiritual foundation for Anya, in other areas I know I need to do some self examination and work on myself. I particularly struggle with prayer. It is’t that I don’t like to pray or that I don’t but my prayer life is lacking. I know that prayer is key in becoming closer to my Father and this is what I desire to do. So, I’m going to intentionally set time aside to pray. If this means I have to stop what I’m doing then I have to stop what I’m doing.
This year has taught me about the awesome power of  prayer and how vital it is to pray for yourself, others, and to have others praying for you. Through all my difficult circumstances this year I had so many people praying for me and I saw God work miracles many times. To those people who prayed for me I am forever grateful and I want to do that for someone else!! I had pray warriors out there who prayed for me daily and encouraged me through God’s word and as a Christian I want to do that for my brothers and sisters. So this year I’m going to end it with prayer and go into 2013 with the intention and commitment to pray, not because to be a good Christian I should but because I want to draw nearer to God. 
I’m reading Colossians and actually may post my bible study of this chapter full of wisdom. But, one verse I would like to share with you is in chapter 4 verse 12,“Epaphras, who is one of you and a servant of Christ Jesus sends greetings. He is always wrestling in prayer for you, that you may stand firm in all the will of God, mature and fully assured.” I don’t know if Epaphras wrestled with prayer the way I do, but I do think what he prayed for was key. He prayed that the people of Christ stand firm in the will of God, becoming mature spiritually and fully assured, meaning there was no doubt only confidence in the Lord’s will and word. This is a great prayer that I’m going to pray for others and myself going into 2013. So pray for me to strengthen my prayer life as I wrestle with the daily distractions that often pull me away from God and my prayer life. Pray that I continually draw nearer. 

Schedule a Date with Your Partner

Developing a relationship with God is the most important relationship you can build. God is your partner so schedule a daily date with him! Here are some easy ways to get in time with God:

• Choose a time when you’re alert and more apt to be focused on God and not your weekly to do list.

• Pick a time when there’s little chance of being interrupted whether it is in the morning before work, lunch or bedtime.
• Take a brisk walk with Jesus and feel good both physically and spiritually. Walking clears your mind and is a healthy way to spend time with God.
• If the kids visit their dad on alternate weekends utilize this time to immerse yourself in prayer and the scriptures. (I’ll talk about spiritual retreats in a later chapter)
• Start your day refreshed with the word of God. If you commute to work using public transportation use this time for bible study.
• If you drive to work invest in an audio bible. You can listen to scriptures and meditate on them while stuck in traffic. This does wonders for your patience.
• If you’re washing dishes, emptying the garbage, or folding laundry take advantage of this opportunity to talk with God.
• Make a lunch date with God. If you work near a park or a quiet area, pull out your bible or sit in prayer for thirty minutes. I can’t think of a more engaging lunch date.
• Don’t pull out the stopwatch out. When you’re praying the hands on the clock should be the last thing you’re focused on. Don’t be so regimented you lose the real purpose of devotional time.

To reap the rewards of a rich prayer life be disciplined, dedicated, and use your time efficiently. Get serious about worshipping and developing a relationship with God. Once you carve out a period in your day dedicated to personal bible study and prayer, stick with it and don’t get sidetracked by ringing phones, Facebook, or screaming kids. Commit to Jesus time and watch your Christian and family life be blessed.

Count Your Blessings in a Prayer and Blessing Journal

“Being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ, unto the glory and praise of God.” Philippians 1:1

When I reminisce over the years I’m amazed and humbled by my abundance of blessings. My father has cared for me on every step of my journey. Even when I didn’t deserve it, and believe me there’s been many times my behavior has been less than Christian. I’m not proud to admit that, but it’s the truth. He’s brought me a long way from the person I was. I’m in awe of the works God performs on a daily basis in my life. He’s done what I’d considered to be impossible and continually demonstrates to me his awesome power. It’s common for single moms to feel that life handed them a bum deal. You may feel cheated that your dream fell apart. Be honest about your feelings and mourn for your loss, but don’t fail to count your blessings.

I’ve recorded my prayers and blessings in a prayer and blessings journal. In these journals I’ve written my thoughts, prayers, blessings, and anything else God has revealed to me. Writing in a journal is very cathartic and I urge you to try your hand at it. If writing isn’t your forte that’s okay. Begin with baby steps and commit to writing in your journal at least five or ten minutes a day or even once a week. Writing in a prayer journal records your most intimate moments with God. It is particularly useful when you’re hitting a rough patch to be able to look back at your prayers and see how God has answered them.

I encourage you to also write down your blessings. When the world is knocking you around take a minute to sit in your sacred space and read your blessings journal. When you take stock of how blessed you actually are your bad mood will change into a state of gratitude.

You may want to invest in two journals one for prayers and one for blessings. Once you start journaling you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how quickly the words fill the pages. Journals are ideal gifts to give fellow single mothers. We need reassurance that God hears our prayers and what better way to be reminded than having a recording of his blessings. David was confident he’d defeat Goliath. His confidence didn’t stem through arrogance. It stemmed through the journal he kept in his mind of how God protected him in the past. He’d previously witnessed the power of God, when he was given the strength to kill a lion and a bear! David didn’t have superhuman strength he had something better a recording of the miracles God performed on his behalf. David had evidence and faith that God would continue to protect him, even against the mighty Goliath. David and the Lord had history that was mightier than any giant! You and I can face our Goliath’s in the same way David did because we too share a history with God. We’ve witnessed the miracles big or small that the Lord is capable of performing in our own life. Looking back at God’s handiwork we’re given the inspiration and confidence to move forward, despite obstacles or barriers.

Don’t Underestimate Your Child’s Spiritual Potential

Anya and I have a  ritual before bed. We get on our knees and say our prayers before bedtime then we read the bible. Anya says the child’s prayer and I’ll say the Lord’s prayer. Last night she wanted to say her prayer first and to my pleasant surprise she said the Lord’s prayer! She said it word for word and then ended it  with may I meditate in God’s word. I had tears in my eyes, here was my precious five year old who I’ve never actually taught to memorize the Lord’s prayer, because I thought it may be a bit difficult for her. Wow did I underestimate her!  Just by listening to me she took it on herself to learn it without saying anything  about it to me. I am blown away by her love and hunger for God already at this tender age. Never think that God isn’t working in your child’s life. Never underestimate your child’s spiritual potential. Praying with your children is essential to their spiritual life and is a wonderful bonding experience for the two of you. Teaching them the power of prayer at a young age is instilling a lifelong lesson and builds their spiritual foundation.

Please Pray for Joanne Heim Today

Good Morning Everyone!!
I got another pray request for another very special mom, Joanne Heim. Joanne has to get surgery today to have her brain flap replaced. Understandably, she is experiencing some fear. Please pray for God to give her comfort and peace. Joanne has made such wonderful progress and this is going to be another stepping stone on her road to recovery. Thank you and please check out Joanne’s site, I love it and her blog is full of fabulous tips on everything from crafts to God to family.
http://thesimplewife.typepad.com/

Staying Spiritually Fit

Nurturing our spiritual life and strengthening our intimate relationship with the Lord is essential to our well being. For the six days you aren’t in church don’t skimp on staying spiritually fit, keep the momentum going at home.Try these tips:

  • Create a personal prayer space void of distractions.  Make it a goal to spend at least 15 minutes to half an hour praying and studying scriptures daily. 
  •  Have a group of friends come over to your home once a week for bible study or a prayer session. 
  •  Keep a journal to record your prayers, blessings and what you’re grateful for.
  • Memorize a scripture for the day or week and take time to reflect upon it.
  • Go on Christianbooks.com or a book store and buy some great discounted uplifiting spiritual literature.