The Most Powerful Thing Parents Can Do For Their Kids This Year

I don’t have “one word” or a New Year’s resolution this year but while driving alone in my car (a rarity, indeed!) and chatting with God about some things that were on my heart for my kids, God gave me four words that I could not ignore. I tried, oh trust me, I tried to ignore the words. I tried to convince myself those four words were merely of my own imagination and not from God. But throughout the rest of the day, the four words settled in my soul and I received them not as a challenge, but an invitation. 

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Give Your Kids What They REALLY Want This Christmas

I was pushing my cart through the décor section in Target when my toddler spotted the Christmas section across the way and exclaimed, “Look Mom, it’s a Christmas tree.” Had he not been buckled in, he may have ejected himself with enthusiasm. I wasn’t surprised that my little guy was excited to see the beautifully lit tree. What did surprise me was the answer he gave when I responded and asked, “You’re right buddy. That is a Christmas tree! Do you remember what Christmas is about?” Without hesitation he responded, “Yes! Santa brings us presents!”

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The high calling of a mom set free

I'm guessing you've picked up on a theme in my writing lately. You probably know by now that I love writing about the things we’ve been set free from. We’ve been set free from the pressure to be perfect, the striving to be enough, and the need to control the outcome of all we pour into our kids. We’ve been set free from the power of sin, the sting of shame, the grip of guilt, and the weight of our worries.  And so much more.

But today I thought it would be fun to chat on the blog about what we have been set free for, because even though I don’t write about this as often, I do sense it holds equal significance for us as moms.

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Our Parenting Doesn't Determine Our Child's Path

There's a familiar pressure trying to make it’s way back into my heart. So I’m calling it out and sharing it with you in case you know this one too.

It’s the one that whispers, “Your child’s path is decided by how well you parent.” It’s not surprising that these pressures (aka lies) come creeping back. There’s enough messaging in our culture to make us feel like it’s all riding on how well we perform as parents. But strangely enough, this specific pressure once stemmed from me taking scripture out of context.

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Parenting in remembrance of God's faithfulness

When our oldest son turned thirteen we wanted to do something special for him - something that would help him see himself through God’s eyes of love and mercy. So we asked a group of men, who know our son well, to write him a letter. We asked that they do two things.  First, we asked them to share what they see in him. We wanted them to speak words of life over our son. And we also asked them to share their wisdom about what God has taught them through both failure and success, and how life works best.

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The Glorious Exchange

Growing up as a preachers kid, I have very fond memories of Easter. The church where my Dad pastored always held a Good Friday service that I can remember vividly, even now. The most memorable part being when we would walk up the front, as one would do to receive communion, but on Good Friday, my father would also place a nail in our palm. A nail like the one that was driven into the hands of our innocent Christ. 

But my father didn’t just gently place the nail in our palm. He applied pressure.  Just enough pressure to make you flinch. And he would say “This is how much He loves you.”

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Declaration #11 - A Bad Day Does Not Make Me A Bad Mom

At the end of a difficult day, when our weaknesses have been underlined AND highlighted in the ways we have parented our kids, it can be all too easy to believe the lie that a bad day makes us a bad mom. So if you’ve had some difficult days lately, and the enemy has tempted you to think that anyone and everyone could be doing a better job parenting your kids than you, can I encourage you today.

I believe this is what God wants you to know when you fear you are damaging your kids and disappointing God.

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