Tag Archive Christian

ByAngie

A “Simple” Calling: Breathing

Need help breathing? Turn to scripture...

Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord!

Psalm 150:6 NKJV

How often do you find yourself breathing? Yeah, that’s what I thought. All the time, right? At least I hope… 😉 But how can breathing be a calling? Well, remember how I’ve mentioned before about being the only Bible some may ever read? I’m talking about your every day actions. The things you do without even realizing it. The words that come out of your mouth. The way you come across to others. Being human…

Sure, we all slip up from time to time. I know I certainly do. But in every action, word, thought, & breath I must remember “I never know who is watching. I would hate to cause someone else to stumble. I must be careful, because I never know… I would rather my existence LEAD someone to the Father than to cause them to run away from him.”

The Bible tells us this:

13 “You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men.14 “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden.15 Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house.

16 Let your light so shine before men,  they may see your good works and  your Father in heaven.

Matthew 5:13-16 NKJV

I need to be set apart. Different. Unique from the world. I have to take into account that if I act just like those who are not following Jesus, they will not see the appeal in following him. They won’t see that living the straight and narrow can bring on a happy life also… with many rewards. Hate the sin, love the sinner. Do good. Speak well. Be positive. Give all glory to God. These are phrases I tell myself to remind me.

When we start to “blend” and not let His light shine, we are causing harm to not only ourselves, but others. For example, our speech. What does it say about our heart if we are saying all the same things they are in the world?

34 Brood of vipers! How can you, being evil, speak good things? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.35 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good things, and an evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth evil things.36But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment.37 For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”

Matthew 12:34-37 NKJV

Don't do this!!!

So basically, If I walk around saying the same things that those who do not follow Christ are, how am I any different? If my heart is the same as theirs, what do they see to make them want to follow Jesus? Not much! This is so important, and something that all should take into account. If we talk like them, act like them, think like them… WE ARE THEM. And by doing this, we are not only hurting them, but ourselves… and most importantly, the One who loves us more than anyone. God is not happy when we don’t do as he says. We should never intentionally give anyone any reason to tear us down.

“Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces.

Matthew 7:6

Now, all that being said, we should not judge either. For that, I recommend reading the entire chapter of Matthew 7. SO important. Who wants to be a Christian when they are constantly condemned and preached at? Show LOVE! (And I certainly hope this blog post doesn’t come across as preachy either…)

Just follow your convictions, let your light shine, and do your best. Witness when possible. God will not only bless you, but also someone else!

 

ByAngie

A “Simple” Calling: The Social Networker

Just by being here reading this, you fit into this category. You are reading a blog, which is a form of social networking. Chances are you are on Facebook, Twitter, and other message boards or websites where you interact with others.

How exactly can one minister to others in this venue? The list is long and varied, but we’ll go over just a few… It’s rather similar to the “simple” calling of friendship, but slightly different.

  • When you see a friend or follower is having a bad day, let them know you’re praying for them… and then REALLY DO PRAY FOR THEM. Send them a message of encouragement! A couple days later, ask them how things are going.
  • Invite those in your area to your church. Post an invite on Saturday and ask that they message you for the address. See if they need a ride if you are capable.
  • Write a “note” about how God has blessed you and those you know lately.
  • Worship song stuck in your head? Post a link. If you’re enjoying it, chances are good someone else will also.
  • When a scripture is laid on your heart, post it. It may just be what someone else needs to read.
  • Post prayer requests for those who are in need of prayer. Get the word out that someone needs to touch God and needs a miracle. You can never have too many prayers.
  • Keep your statuses uplifting, encouraging, non-confrontational, and clear. If you feel the need to post about your bad day and are seeking support from friends from time to time, go ahead. But try to have more positive posts than negative ones. When you are angry at someone on your friends list or that is following you, try your hardest not to post a vague update that will only cause confusion. Keep confrontations private. As I said before, we may be the only Bible some people read. When you act out in anger in such a large arena you are only making yourself look silly. (I’m speaking from experience. We’ve all done it, right? Forgive me, Lord.)

It may feel as though you are not making a difference with this ministry, but I certainly guarantee that you are.

What are some other ways that you use Facebook, Twitter, or another social network as a ministry? I’d love to hear your answers!

ByAngie

Living Your Legacy: Walking The Walk And Talking The Talk

It’s really easy to get an idea of what we would LIKE for our legacy to be. Living that legacy, well, that can be another story, right? Just like everything else in parenting, easier said than done.

So how can we set those examples before our children and others?

Well, first of all, we must strive daily to NOT be a “Do as I say, not as I do” parent. Telling our children to live one way while we live another is obviously not the way to achieve a Godly legacy.

Second, if we want our children to grow up and have meaningful relationships we must show them that by our example also. Being a true friend, a loving wife, a good daughter, etc are all ways for them to learn how to interact with others on their own. If we talk trash behind others backs, hold grudges, allow our husbands to put us down or abuse us emotionally or physically, disrespect our husbands, and argue consistently with our families then our children will believe that these actions are acceptable. Plain and simple. When your kids are grown and they shine in their relationships, I guarantee someone is going to say “They must have had a really fantastic mother.” Seriously.

I have to remind myself of these things EVERY day. I am human, and sometimes I have to stop myself and say “Hey! Don’t be a hypocrite! Little eyes are watching you, as are those of others who expect you to be what you say, a Christian. Shape up!”

Thankfully, with diligent prayer and discipline, we can do our best and bring up our children to know the Lord and live his ways… I’m going to try my hardest. Will you?

Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it.

Proverbs 22:6 NKJV

 

ByAngie

The Unexpected Burden

Yesterday afternoon I went out to run some errands with my Mom. I still wasn’t feeling 100%, but I just wanted to get out of the house for a little while. I decided to take Tommy (3 1/2) along and leave Johnny Ben and Molly at home with Daddy.

We had a couple stops, one of them being Target. I was tired, Tommy was tired, my Mom was tired. All I could think of was getting back in her truck and going home. When we came to the register the cashier was just counting in and starting her shift. She greeted us, asked if we found everything okay, and from there stayed silent. The expressions on her face and her mannerisms told me something in her life other than work was bothering her. Her mind and heart were somewhere else, and that somewhere else was not a happy place. Tommy even seemed to notice and asked her to smile, but she pretended not to hear him or was so distracted she did not notice.

I made mental note of the name on her name tag. I was polite but tried not to bother her with idle chit chat. I smiled at her, took the bags, and quietly prayed for her as she continued the process. I did not feel led to ask her why she was unhappy, but did feel a tug telling me to pray.

Since we left the store about 20 hours ago, this woman has come to mind constantly. I have no idea why she has been laid on my heart, but God does. I pray for her, asking God to do what needs to be done and touch her life.

How many times have we been asked by The Lord to do something like this and have ignored it? I know I have before. How many times have strangers done this for us? We many never know until we reach Heaven.

For all we know, when these burdens are laid on our hearts, we could be the only person praying for this individual. We could also be one of hundreds working together. The point is, GOD KNOWS. He really does. He loves that woman just as much as He loves me. He hates seeing her go through pain. He needs someone to hold her up in the spiritual realm just as much as she needs someone in the physical realm. Never ignore the Holy Spirit when he says to pray for someone… For all you know, the next time a burden is laid on a strangers heart… It may be for you!

ByDiania

If We All Pull Together

How many of you remember that little song with the big meaning from your childhood, the one that only had a few repeated choruses about pulling together and how happy we’d be? I think we learn more from our younger years then we even realize, we take little songs and apply them to simple little things without having thought about that little tune since childhood.

Pulling together is the very importance of Christianity, getting the impossible done when it almost seems impossible, raising funds for children you will never meet, but knowing they will be blessed from something you and a handful of others felt led to do.

Pulling together somehow keeps the joy in your heart, the smile on your face and the skip in your walk. Age holds no barrier to helping, God can and will use any one who applies for the job. You just have to be willing. No paper work or application necessary, and you get full benefits with a vacation package your sure to be happy with when you reach paradise…

Today I watched everyone pull together, the job got done and I thank God for letting me be a part of such a wonderful group of Christians, SO IF WE ALL PULL TOGETHER, TOGETHER, TOGETHER, IF WE ALL PULL TOGETHER THE HAPPIER WE’LL BE……

 

 

ByAngie

Your Legacy: How Will You Be Remembered?

Unfortunately, I don't think I'll ever be able to live this one down. Oh yeah, that's my legacy. Go me!

This question has been on my mind a lot lately. How will my children, grandchildren, friends, and family remember me?

Will I be remembered for making gingerbread every Christmas? Will it be for being a woman who strived her best to be a Godly wife and mother? I’m desperately hoping it’s not for being a procrastinating, scatter brained, unorganized, occasionally crabby person who ONE time made a bad batch of tacos and ever since her husband questioned her every time she suggested them for dinner… Or made anything else new for that matter.

How can we make sure that we are remembered for the good and not the bad?

I would say the best thing we can do is to make the positive in our lives outshine the negative. Live with a positive outlook as much as possible. Let Jesus’ light shine through you. Don’t hold grudges, act bitter, be mean, or easily offended. And while it can be an easy way to handle a delicate situation by being passive aggressive, is that really something we would want to be remembered for?

My Grandparents having my Mom dedicated as an infant

Recently I’ve been trying to take note of my habits. Which ones are great to have, which ones I don’t mind or are not damaging, and which ones I would never want to be remembered for. Then I sat and thought of my Grandparents… Two of the most caring, loving, Godly people I’ve ever known. I remember them for all the funny and wonderful things they did. I remember them for raising their family for Christ. I remember them for loving coffee, Diet Coke, and going out to eat. I remember them for being compassionate and passionate for the work of The Lord. Do I recall them having flaws and being human? Certainly! However, more often I remember them leading us by example in a positive, unique, Godly way.

I have taken it upon myself to be sure that I leave a similar legacy for my own children and grandchildren. Why “similar” and not the exact same you ask? Because it’s MY legacy. Not Dorothy’s. Not Paul Benjamin’s. It’s ANGIE’s legacy. I want to pass down all of those same things, but in my own way with some added flare that says “Angie was here…” Part of that is that I MUST agree to have my photo taken more often. While still. Not on a ride at Disneyland making some dumb face. Ugh… 😉

What about you? How will you be sure that you are passing down what would be good habits for your children and not setting them up for a fall?

 

ByAngie

A “Simple” Calling: Being A Patron

Definition of PATRON

3: one who buys the goods or uses the services offered especially by an establishment

The calling can be reversed also... How can you minister to your patrons?

Ever been in a line at the store or sitting in a restaurant when suddenly you hear a customer being down right rude and mean to the employee helping them, or worse, another customer?

What about not even really acknowledging the person helping you, but just treating them as a gateway to get the stuff you want/need NOW?

Maybe you’re on a phone call with a customer service representative and they anger you, so you rip into them?

Sadly, it happens. We’re human, so naturally we make mistakes. We get sensitive or angry about something and we want to blame someone and throw a tantrum until it is fixed. But what kind of message are we sending out as Christians when we do this?

What kind of mood would you be in if you worked here? Think about it...

Think about it, what is the person on the other side going through that day? What if it’s a new job and they are just learning? What if it’s a single Mom working 3 jobs just to support her children and ill parents? I mean, yeah, sometimes the other person is just a jerk and could care less… But shouldn’t we show even them our love? And what about those who are with us when we act this way… We are humiliating our friends, family, & setting a poor example for our children. For some, we are the only Bible they will ever read. What if their idea of a Christian is skewed because of our bad temper?

So, how exactly can we minister? How can being a patron be a calling? Well, it’s actually not difficult at all. Here are a few tips:

  • Pray: Say a quick simple prayer before you leave the house. Ask God to bless those that you come in to contact with and to let his light shine through you. Request extra patience too…
  • Smile: Do it as much as you can. You never know who will have a better day just because you smiled.
  • Take Deep Breaths: When you do encounter someone who is rude, showing poor customer service, or just seems to not know or care about anything going on around them, take a few good deep breaths before you say something and utter a prayer under said breath.
  • Be Kinder Than Necessary: Same idea as smiling…
  • Say Please & Thank You: They really are magic words that go a long way! Your 3rd grade teacher wasn’t kidding!
  • Use Names & Titles Where Applicable: Let them know you see them as an individual.
  • Show Respect & Say “God Bless You” Or Something Similar: Make it difficult for them to be rude to you. Dory (Finding Nemo) says “Just keep swimming”. I would add, once again, “Just keep smiling”.
  • Try Really Hard Not To Be A Hypocrite: Because when you act out, it really hurts the other person’s view point of Christians. Especially if you have a “Forgiven” tattoo, John 3:16 key chain, and a fish emblem on your car.
  • Never Let Them Walk All Over You Either: If the need arises, stand your ground. Just do it as nicely as possible.

I won’t lie, this was hard for me to write. I, myself, have a problem with this from time to time. I’m GUILTY! YES! I said it! And if I’m the only one that learns from this, that’s okay… Because I needed to be reminded.

Thank you for reading! God bless! 😉

ByDiania

Anyone Can Be A Mommy… Can You Be A Mother?

I sit around thinking about things I wish I would have done different while raising my children…

For the biggest part I know most of us do the best we can, and love our children with everything we have. From the time we hear we are going to have our little bundle we are excited for the coming day. We think of our ”BABY” as just that, a ”BABY”. When in actuality we are raising an adult.

The baby years are the fastest years of your child’s life, everything he is taught in his first few years will be carried with him to adulthood. You are his teacher of life; There to show him how to grow into a Godly man. It was never Gods intention just to give you a baby and not expect you to train him up in the ways of the Lord. Whats expected of you goes far beyond diaper changing and toilet training. You have taken on the responsibility of raising one of Gods greatest gifts.

Being a mommy for a few years is the easy part. Being a mother is for life. You can choose to do this job with a loving heart and a lot of prayer, or you can sit back and just pray for the years to hurry and pass… But tell me, what kind of memories will you have if you don’t do your best to raise Gods greatest gift? There is no going back to change what’s already been done.

All the women who write here are not here to condemn or judge. We are simply mothers who have been through what you are going through. Here to try to make it just a little easier. The advice is all free, whether you choose to take it is up to you. How you choose to raise your child is up to you too. I pray you choose to tell him everyday about Jesus and pray for God’s hand to keep him from evil. Someday, when he is older he will thank you and call you blessed. He will know he had the best mother God could have given him. Another one of His greatest gifts.

So from Mommy to Mother, how will you choose to accept Gods gift? My prayers are with every mother out there doing one of the hardest and most important jobs in the world. May God bless you on your journey…

Love,

ByDiania

No Time For Sissies!

Lets start this by saying this week has been one whirlwind of events. The sickness in our church has taken a toll on me. Saying I have been discouraged is an understatement. So I decided it was time to get specific with my prayer, this was no time for sissy prayers.

I let God in on what my heart has been feeling, stating to him that I need to see the hand of God move. After months of praying up against brick walls and seeing nothing happen , it was time for hitting the knees and telling Him I need more. One can only endure so much, and that was where I was.

I don’t believe I was alone in my feelings. For the last couple years we have seen more sickness, the most some have endured in a lifetime. To say the least we have been attacked by the enemy, and it was time to take back what he has stolen from us. I can definitely say when Dean was, frustration filled me to the core. Standing back with sissy prayers was not going to be acceptable. What we needed was a team of serious prayer warriors standing in the gap for a brother in Christ, and that’s exactly what we got.

I love the living testimony of people walking by seeing where we put our trust. In our Lord and savior, the only true physician who could heal beyond what any man could do. I pray those people know where real healings come from.

I never doubt what my God can do, I may get discouraged but He is still in the healing business, and that is what I stand on. Promises of a God that cannot lie, and will not lie. I know for a fact that Dean is on his way to a full recovery. Tonite I sat in his chair and asked God to restore him back to a wholeness of wellness. In the name of Jesus I prayed for every illness Dean has, from allergies to back pain. Get ready Dean your gonna be better then ever, like I said,

You will arise and go forth, in the name of the Lord of host, for he has conquered every foe by his name, by his name, I will declare he is the Lord I will trust and not be afraid I will arise and go forth by his name…………….

I put my faith in God, he came thru once again. Amen……………..I love you Lord, and again I give you the praise…..

 

Originally written by Diania on April 14th, 2011… In reference to Angie’s Dad, Dean… You can read more about the situation we were all in here.

ByAngie

A “Simple” Calling: The Ministry Of Motherhood

Okay, first of all: We’re all mommies here, so we all know that to call motherhood a “simple” calling is really kind of a joke. Being a mom is one of the most difficult and most rewarding jobs one can ever have. But my point can be explained here.

Some of us knew from a young age that we would one day answer the call. We played with dolls, dreamed of having a family, and played “house” every chance we got. Others? They had no idea that motherhood would be a part of their life’s journey. Either their perspective changed or it “snuck up on them”, so to speak. At the same time, some of us came about it very easily and for others it was a full on battle to acquire.

Angie with her 2 oldest children in August of 2006

Regardless, the call is still the same. In reality, it is not simple at all. We are responsible for a new generation that will take over after us. The future is literally on us. The morals that the next generation will have or not have are in our hands. Should we not do our best to bring them up right, we will be the ones who have to answer. Like I said, far from simple.

Let me stop right here and point out I am NOT an expert. I don’t even consider myself an amazing mother. I do my best from day to day, and pray that God leads me to what he wants me to do in this ministry to my children.

So while we are not leading millions to The Lord, we are making a big impression. What can we do with this ministry? Well, here are just a few things, in no particular order…

  • Pray. Without ceasing. Pray for your children when you wake up, when you make their breakfast, when you wash their clothes/dishes, when they are well, when they are sick. Pray when they go to bed, pray when you go to bed. Pray for guidance, and for their souls.
  • Study. Mostly the Bible. But also, Dr. Dobson, Dr. Kevin Leman, and many many others have written many wonderful books on the subject of Christian parenting. I don’t know how many times just studying a true experts suggestions, prayers, findings, and opinions have helped me in my own journey.
  • Teach. Read Bible stories to your children. Make sure they learn manners. Have a weekly memory verse. Give them appropriate chores. Your child learning about Jesus, morals, and character development are imperative. I’m not saying pull your kid out of school and teach them everything at home. To each their own. Do it in your daily life, read a couple picture books with your younger children. Talk about it with your older children. Refer above to “pray” & “study”.
  • Be patient. They are only children. They are still growing, learning, and are constantly adapting. Cut them a little slack. Don’t be too strict.
  • Love. Most importantly, because if you don’t show God’s love to your children, who will? They thrive on love, and as their mother, they need it from you.
  • Discipline. Don’t be afraid of it. However, keep it appropriate and within reason. Once again, I suggest “study”.
  • Make time. Quality time goes a LONG way. Little things like house work can wait. For years many told me this, only as my oldest has turned 10 this year am I realizing I missed out a lot on the first few months of his life while I obsessed over the state of my home.
  • Be an example. Don’t be a “Say as I do, not as I do” mom. Give them something to aim for, not to settle for.

Yeah, I know this all looks great in print but another story in reality. Trust me: I have 5 kids, 2 of which I do not have full time physical but only joint legal custody over. In addition, my other 3 that live with me are all ages 3 and under. I definitely know. Some of this that I’ve listed are really things I’ve only learned recently. Others, things I’m learning right now. Some, I knew from the beginning. But ALL are a challenge.

Once again, motherhood is not easy. But it is call of God. Never think otherwise. Do your best, as it’s all you can do. Before you know it, our babies will be grown and have babies of their own… and we’ll miss this. Deeply.

Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6 NKJV

 

A very special THANK YOU to Diania for her insight on this post… You’re the best!