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From the Mouths of Babes

Youngmotherhood

This week is a celebration of life’s greatest nurturers.  Nurses, teachers and mothers are given days of recognition for their huge contribution to society.  When I think of these professions, I immediately think of children and how much time and care is poured into their lives.   Nurses, of course care for all age groups, but looking at their profession, the way they nurture children is through physical care and health.  Teachers nurture children through educational growth and being mentors to them.  Mothers nurture children in all aspects of life through physicals, emotional, mental, and spiritual needs.  But, my thoughts this week primarily go straight to the child.  I’m a mother, my son just turned eighteen.  He’s entering adulthood, but he will always be my child. Motherhood is one of the greatest and most important roles that I have.  It’s a hard job, emotionally and physically draining at times. However, children are a gift that cannot be measured or taken lightly.   I have grown close to many kids throughout my life, those who are in my family, those who were my sidekicks before I was a mother, and those who I’ve taught or worked alongside of through the years.  Each of them has given me something to learn about life and has a huge place in my heart.

Children can teach adults as much as adults can teach kids.  I really love kids because they are so transparent and speak directly from the heart and with considerable bluntness.  Even the mischievous ones can’t help but tell on themselves, without meaning to.  As much as we pour into their lives, they reciprocate just as much into ours.  I met a kid last week who was visiting my next door neighbor.  I went outside to take out the trash, when the little girl approached me.  In my neighborhood, the houses are super close, so we often share visitors without set boundaries.  Anyway, she greeted me and asked me my name.  I told her and she replied with her name.  Her name was really similar to mine.  She proceeded to tell me about her parents being split up and in each of them in other relationships, among other little details.  The funny thing with kids is that they can immediately spill their life history in less than five minutes, if they feel the need to do so.  Anyway, when I came back into the house after our conversation, I started thinking about how she trusted me enough to unload on me and how easily she let me be a sounding board.  This instance, made me think of Jesus and how he said in the Bible to come to him as a child.  He continues to say; whoever humbles himself like a child is greatest in the kingdom of Heaven.

How often in our adult life do we casually go up to God and just unload on Him?  How often do we treat Him as the friend He really is? How easily do we trust Him?  How quickly do we confess the things that bother us or admit our shortcomings?  Anyone who has been around kids for just a little while will quickly hear at least one or two innocent confessions, even it’s in a roundabout way.

So, this week as we celebrate teachers, nurses, and mothers, let us recognize as well how much life children give to us.  Listen to them and feed back into them with rich nutrients of life that will help them grow in every dimension of their being.  Help them to know that they are valuable and are loved.  And remember how much you can learn from them.

Children grow up fast, enjoy every moment with them.

“Bring up a child by teaching him the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn away from it.”  Proverbs 22:6

When I think of kids, I always think of this literary piece as well.  It’s one of my favorite readings. I had to include it in this blog.

On Children – Kahlil Gibran

 And a woman who held a babe against her bosom said, Speak to us of Children.

     And he said:

     Your children are not your children.

     They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.

     They come through you but not from you,

     And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.

 

     You may give them your love but not your thoughts,

     For they have their own thoughts.

     You may house their bodies but not their souls,

     For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.

     You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.

     For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

     You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.

     The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far.

     Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;

     For even as He loves the arrow that flies, so He loves also the bow that is stable.

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Labor Day Weekend Musings

workLabor Day weekend is a great time to enjoy an extended weekend and take a breather from your job or profession. I have been looking forward to this weekend for several weeks now. What have I looked forward to the most?  Having one extra day where I do not have to set the alarm clock and wake up later than usual.

My parents instilled a strong work ethic in me. They led by example because they both are hard workers.  My mom stayed home with my sisters and me when we were younger.  But she didn’t slack at all.  She kept a very clean house and made sure that dinner was on the table for us in the evening and the yard was kept up. To me she was a bit OCD with some things.  She taught us to clean well.  She made me redo my chores a lot when I tried to shortcut them.  My dad worked hard too.  He worked in his father’s grocery store when I was a kid.  He also worked part time for a gas station in town and volunteered at the fire department.  He was my hero in many ways.  I bragged to my classmates about how hard he worked for his family.

When my sisters and I got a little older, mom got a job outside the house. She worked retail for a little while and also went back to college to pursue her dream of becoming a teacher.  She made straight A’s in college and did her job proficiently.   She got her degree about a few years before I got my college degree and she went on to teach high school English.  She retired from it this year.

During my summer and winter breaks in college, I worked for my dad at the grocery store that he was manager of. He enjoyed his job and took it very seriously.  I appreciated working alongside him, but learned quickly that he’d let me know if something wasn’t done right and correct me on what to do or not do.  My parents weren’t rich by any means, but they provided for us and kept the bills paid, food on the table, and clothes on our backs.

My husband is diligent in his work as well. Throughout our marriage, he has worked hard to build his businesses.  I’m proud of all that he has accomplished in his work.  He is brilliant in his field, he is kind hearted and is ethical in all that he does.  Being a business owner isn’t an easy job.  People, who aren’t business owners, do not usually understand the pressure and stress that comes along with it.  I help my husband by managing the embroidery shop that he bought almost ten years ago.  Because of the way I was taught, I have many pet peeves that revolve around laziness, tardiness and poor work ethic.

Anyway, I say all of that to conclude that I am thankful for times of rest and replenishing. We were created to work, but also created to take time to rest.  God created the earth in six days and on the seventh day, he rested.  In Exodus 20:8-11, it says “Remember to observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. You have six days each week for your ordinary work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath day of rest dedicated to the Lord your God. On that day no one in your household may do any work. This includes you, your sons and daughters, your male and female servants, your livestock, and any foreigners living among you.  For in six days the Lord made the heavens, the earth, the sea, and everything in them; but on the seventh day he rested. That is why the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and set it apart as holy.” 

 
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Posted by on September 4, 2016 in Life

 

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Imitation of Life

Image“Do as God would do. Much-loved children want to do as their fathers do. Live with love as Christ loved you. He gave Himself for us, a gift on the altar to God which was as a sweet smell to God.” Ephesians 5:1-2 (New Life Version)

Often the first person we imitate is our parents or guardian.  This happens the first few months of life.  A baby recognizes the parents face and learns gestures and facial expressions from them.  A baby learns to smile because the parent smiles at the child.  To imitate means to follow as a pattern or to be or appear like the person copied.  The Latin root of the word comes from the word image. 

As we grow up and become teenagers, we strive to imitate celebrities, peers, and people we think are cool.  Even as adults, we look to imitate other people who work alongside us or seem to have things we want.  Who should we be imitating though?  We should be imitating God.  He is the image we should strive to be like.  It makes sense doesn’t it?  We are made in His image and He is our Father.  So, ask yourself this week as you go about your life, who are you imitating?  Strive to do as God would do.  Live a week following after Him and imitating His actions. 

 
 

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