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Book Reviews

Triggers Chapter 1

Praise Jesus for big, fat, huge, miracles! Amber Lia and Wendy Speake wrote a book together called Triggers: Exchanging Parents’ Angry Reactions for Gentle Biblical Responses. If there is one area in my life that I am the least happy with, it’s my parenting skills. I am perfectly fine with one child and most of the time, I can handle two of them together. When I get all three of my kids together in my small house and they are bickering and someone is hurt and there’s milk all over my floor, and there’s an obnoxious toy going off for the 15th time, I just can’t hold it in any longer. I let all that nastiness spew right out of my mouth and all over my sweet little babies. I know not all of it is their fault and they aren’t trying to push my buttons (all the time anyway), but I just can’t stop the volcano. Once it erupts it just keeps going and going, pushing over anyone and everyone in it’s way. I’ve tried so many methods of changing their behavior, changing my behavior, trying to explain more and yell less, and having conversations with them about what my triggers are (and they know!), but none of it made a lasting impact on my home.

I am completely and totally convinced that this book reaching my inbox was a God-send. For once, I have a resource of Godly inspiration (something I’ve been searching for for a few years now), written by women who have been there and who don’t judge me for the absurd things coming out of my mouth and affecting my children. I know that they are afraid of me and I hate it. I want to change that, and I’m the only one who can.

Would you join me on a short look through this book? I’m going to be also using these posts as a journal to record thoughts, feelings, reactions and how things have changed in my home. I’d love for you to join me if you’d need help as well.

Chapter One – Disobedience

It’s very strange to me how just hearing the word disobedience can make my heart rate kick up a few notches. I really don’t think that there is a more universal theme of parents across the board than the fact that their kids don’t do what they are asked.

Amber is writing this chapter and she gives an example of a mentor running along-side a troubled teen in a running test and how she coached her through it to the finish line. I hope that I’m not the only Mom that wonders why we can be so harsh with our own kids, but we would never be that way with someone else’s. And I would never allow someone else to speak to my kids the way I do, so why is it ok for me? If my voice is going to be their “inner voice” for the rest of their lives, I definitely do NOT want them to remember me screaming at them!

The other piece of this chapter that really touches me is about my own disobedience (something I’ve been struggling with for a long time). It says that God doesn’t beat you over the head with punishment and condemnation. “He reminds us to go and sin no more. And then leaves us to it.” If we get off-course, He rejoices when we repent and ask for his forgiveness. I don’t know about you, but that’s the farthest thing from my mind when I’m angry and feel disrespected because my kids are not obeying, again. But, that’s what we are called to do as daughters of the Great I Am. We are supposed to bring Christ into our homes. Man, I need some more of that.

If you have thoughts, I’d love to hear them!

Good night and God Bless.

31 Days of Praise

31 Days of Praise…Day 3

Thank you for spending a few moments with me today.  This month, I’m praising God for 31 days for all of the blessings that He’s given me, even though I deserve none of them.

From before I even opened my eyes all the way this morning and heard a little voice calling my name from the other room (Praise Jesus for cribs!), far earlier than I anticipated getting up, until now when I am finally sitting in my bed again, Satan has been hitting me hard with every weapon he has.  You see, he doesn’t like it when we try to do things that get us and others closer to God.  The enemy will fight us tooth and nail to keep us far from our Father.  I couldn’t tell you how many obstacles I had to overcome throughout the day (so many that I seriously lost count), but I never lost my composure, and I am absolutely sure that I had nothing to do with it.  The amount of peace you have when you get out of the way and let God be in control and do His job is unimaginable.  With all the different kids and their schedules, financial issues that comes from being a single mom and work days getting longer and longer, the amount of stess I have in my life is insane.  God gets me through it every day.  It’s only by His mercy that I am even still breathing.

I challenge you.  The next time you have this mountain you are facing, tell God (aloud so Satan can hear you!) that He is in control and you trust Him to provide everything you need to get to the other side.  He will NOT disappoint.  Then get ready to explain to others how you can be so peaceful in the midst of the storms.  They will notice a difference.

Would you share with me what you are thankful for?

31 Days of Praise

31 Days of Praise…Day 2

Hi there!  I’m glad you’re back.  For the month of March, I am praising God for the numerous blessings in my life.  Yesterday, I shared with you how thankful I am for the baby steps God gives us to prepare us for our wildest dreams to come true one day.

Today, I’d love to share my cheering section and how fantastic they are!  I’ve always been a people person and I would much rather visit with someone and share ideas with them over food or coffee versus on the phone through text or email.  But, when you are a single Mama of three kids 7 and under, your opportunities for deep and spiritual conversation are limited.  When you do finally have a chance to talk to a mama-friend, we usually end up talking about diapers or the latest sickness going around school.  Also, we moved about 45 minutes from church, so that rules out Wednesday night classes and the Sunday night Single Moms group that I really need!  But, I desperately needed fellowship with other strong, Christian women.  Man, did God blow my mind when He answered my prayers!

I received an email about a year ago that was about taming that out of control to-do list.  I think I laughed out loud at my computer when I read this because I’m not a to-do list maker…mostly I just procrastinate on everything, every single day.  I figured it wouldn’t hurt to check this book out, so I signed up to do this study online, since that was the only way I was ever going to make it studying the Bible work in the midst of my crazy life.  Before the study even started, this group of women who’ve been studying together for a long time reached out to me as the new one in the group and made me feel completely at home.  As Faith Warriors, we have prayed over numerous situations, studied the Word, held each other accountable, lifted our sisters up when they couldn’t do it themselves, and we love to have fun and be silly.  It’s so ironic to me that when I needed friends so badly, that God would give me friends that were looking for the same thing, just all over the country.

I can without a doubt say that without the love and encouragement of my friends, family, church family, and brothers and sisters in faith, both far and wide, I would not be comfortable with standing up and screaming that I want to be a writer.  This dream would never have left my head if I didn’t know that I could trust God’s workers with the tender parts of my heart.  Today, I praise a good Father who knows what we need and fills that need in only a way He can.

Today, I am asking you to think about someone (or several someones) who need your encouragement.  Maybe you haven’t heard from them in a while because you both got caught up in life.  It might be a single mom or dad who has to play both roles and is feeling weak, insecure and like a failure.  Perhaps, it’s someone who is battling chronic illness or their caretaker.  It doesn’t take that long to call them or text them and say, “I miss you.  I love you.  I’m praying for you right now, at this very moment.”  If you can’t think of someone, pray and ask for God to put someone’s name on your heart that needs to feel His love today.


Five Minute Friday…Celebrate


Today, I celebrate the fact that I am making forward steps in my goal of being a writer.  Not just someone who captions photos well or says nice things on someone’s facebook page, but a real writer.

I’m not sure where this adventure will end, but I know it’s going to start with Jesus.  It has been a conversation that He and I have been having for a long time.  Longer than I’d like to admit…but He’s pushing.  I’m part of an online Bible Study and the women are fabulous and encouraging and insanely helpful.  Especially when your biggest accomplishment in life is how well you procrastinate (ha!).

I know that God gave me a gift and it would not be honoring Him if I didn’t share it with others.  If I can bring people to know Jesus because of it, then that will be AMAZING!  The Holy Spirit has been bringing the “go and make disciples” verses to my attention so many times in the last couple of years.  Maybe this is my “How”.

Now, I just need an idea on what to write.  My story isn’t done yet.