On Saturday there were tears, and maybe some gnashing of teeth, as worries over children and their character overwhelmed. As some problems were brought to light and as the new school year looms ever-closer, this mama’s heart was heavy and discouraged. Every fault, every failure, every short-coming, it seemed, could be traced right back to me and I felt, once again, I could never be enough. And Sunday dawned with much needed heart-felt worship and a sermon kicked off with Pharrel Williams’ “Happy”. And the day ended with a LeCrae concert and an unexpectedly amazing time of worship and encouragement and just plain fun. Some things were remembered that Sunday that need to be remembered again and again. Things like God’s faithfulness and His promise and that these children are His and as parents we must do our best, but it’s not about us. Some thoughts from the past couple of weeks that my soul has been holding tightly to:
- Why aren’t we more enthusiastic? (All of the following is from Pastor Jim’s current sermon series, until noted otherwise):
- we forget how good we have it
- we have unrealistic expectations
- we have a grumpy gene (heh 🙂 )
- Colossians 3:12-17 (ESV) – Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another,forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
- Choose to set your mind on the things of Christ.
- Oh my mind has not been here. I have been distracted by so many things; many good things even, but not Christ. But my prayer of late has been that Jesus would make Himself first in my heart again.
- How do we become more enthusiastic?
- Let the peace of the Messiah control your heart.
- Be thankful.
- Let the message dwell richly.
- On parenting:
- Know your child. Know yourself. Know Christ. (oh yes!)
- Some people are just runners. They will run from law and they will run from grace. Law (legalism) does not draw anyone back. Grace draws its own back home. Hold fast to the gospel of grace.
- Romans 12:11 (NLT) – Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically.
And then there was that LeCrae concert, with speakers like Tyrone Flowers and Phil Davis and that oft needed reminder that this world is more than what we see and that there is a daily battle for our hearts and minds. And fresh off my own emotional wrestling over kids and choices and hearts, Tyrone Flowers pulls out Jeremiah 29:11, that verse that has given me hope for over twenty years, and God quietly reminded me that not only does He have a plan for me, He has a plan for them too. Each of those girls sitting to my right was created by Him – on purpose and for a purpose. And while I definitely have a job to do with them, their ultimate outcome is not up to me. He has a plan. I can trust that plan. It may not look like I want it to look, but He has a plan and it is good.
For His Glory ~