Saturday, December 16, 2017

Fighting My Inner Scrooge

How are you? 

Has Christmas' approach found you stressed out and frazzled and maybe a teensy bit discouraged? Are you struggling to find joy and peace and the holly jolly, HoHoHo-ness of the season? ASK ME HOW I KNOW. 

Sometimes the end of the year drains me, too. I'm running around trying to find last minute gifts and shipping delays are giving me tension headaches and so help me- IF I FORGET TO MOVE THAT ELF ONE MORE TIME...

It's easy for me to slip into the Spiritual Doldrums when things get overwhelming. I've got an overflowing plate of responsibilities. I wake up with my mind automatically ticking around items on my To Do List. Taking 20 minutes to sit at His feet, to read His Word and to ask Him to order my day feels impossible. 

But I do it anyway. 

I may grumble to myself and rub my burning eyes as I pour my coffee, but as I grab a blanket and a pen and open my Bible- His peace restores me. I read through scripture and it's like a calm settles in my spirit. (I can't say it lasts forever- especially when the kids wake up and find that the elf hasn't moved. Again.) But even for a brief window of my day- things are right. And I can hold onto that as I refresh my email tracking packages or when I'm calculating exactly how many more Math lessons we need to get through before Christmas or when the tears are shed over sharing the last homemade sugar cookie. 

I read Romans 6 this morning. IT WAS THE MOST ENCOURAGING CHAPTER. If you're fighting the urge to dramatically throw your cup of eggnog against the wall in a fit of Seasonal Affective Angst- listen to Paul's words. I'm sure they'll be as uplifting to you as they were to me. 

Merry Christmas, y'all!

And thanks for stopping by~ Katie. 

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Hymn To A Worthy Woman: Proverbs 31

Last month, I blogged along with y'all as we studied one chapter of Proverbs each day for the month. It was such a good exercise for me to sit down and write each day about what God was using His Word to teach me. 

But there are only 30 days in November. That leaves us one chapter short of finishing Proverbs. Well, that ain't gonna happen. Proverbs 31 is SOLID GOLD so let's do this. 

"Give her the product of her hands, 
And let her works praise her in the gates."
Proverbs 31:31

Ok, so BUT FOR REAL- this last verse of the last chapter of Proverbs both excites and petrifies me because y'all- it is 100% fact. In my life, the things I focus on, the time and effort I put into things, the areas I give highest priority are going to be my fruit bearers. For better or worse, for elation or embarrassment, whatever I have chosen to devote my time and energy and entertainment to- PEOPLE ARE GOING TO SEE IT AND KNOW WHAT IS UP IN MY LIFE. 

If I've let my kids slack off in the Discipline Department, I'm going to have some wild oats to harvest in the grocery store or at church or when I'm trying to stand in line at the post office. Bleurg. My works will be "praising me in the gates" while I shop IN THE MALL, WITH MY KIDS, LESS THAN THREE WEEKS UNTIL CHRISTMAS if I haven't been striving to refine my heart and focus on humility or having more self control. My neck vein will start bulging, I'll get that classic TMJ jaw-clench going and before I know it, I'll have a tension headache and will have unknowingly inhaled an entire Great American Cookie Company shelf in an attempt to self medicate. Not good, bless my heart. 

But on the other hand, if I HAVE been working to point our hearts toward Him- you'll be able to see that, too. You'll see my kids reaching out, talking with some of our elderly church members and bringing them notes and cards they've drawn. You'll watch them play nicely with their friends and siblings while maybe only one tear is shed instead of seventeen. You'll see me roll with the punches when my To Do list is taller than I am and every check out line is stretching to the back of the store. I MAY EVEN HAVE A SMILE ON MY FACE. It will be shocking. 

Our hearts will put out what we put into them. This verse encourages me to fuel it with Him. 

Have a Christ-filled day, y'all! And thanks for stopping by for one last chapter~ Katie. 

Thursday, November 30, 2017

30 Days of Proverbs: November 30th

November 30, 2017
Proverbs 30: The Wonder and Power of God

"Two things I asked of You,
Do not refuse me before I die:
Keep deception and lies far from me,
Give me neither poverty nor riches;
Feed me with the food that is my portion,
That I not be full and deny You and say "Who is the Lord?"
Or that I not be in want and steal, 
And profane the name of my God."
Proverbs 30: 7-9

Go and grab an ink pen or a hi-lighter or one of your kid's broken crayons. Open your Bible- your real life, paper paged Bible and underline these verses. Put a gigantic bubbly circle around them. Star the numbers. Do something to mark their place so that when you open Proverbs 30, these bad boys jump off the page into your brain. 

That's how much I love these words. 

I think comparison and discontent are a few of Satan's favorite tools. They cripple us. They poison our hearts by sewing seeds of bitterness and envy. They keep us from using what we've been given today because we're too focused on what we want to have tomorrow. 

And that's powerful stuff.  

I remember having to check my own attitude a few years ago. A friend of mine was in a different life season than I was because her kids were nearly a dozen years older than mine. I'd call her at 9:07am and her house would be as quiet as a tomb. Mine sounded like feeding time at the zoo. She was able to open her home to friends for coffee and Bible studies. I would open mine to send the kids into the backyard so I could try and remove three days of dried jelly from my kitchen table. I'd talk to her, see her calm and quiet life and I'd have to seriously check my heart for discontent.

But that's not being fed with my portion. That's trying to be fed with hers. 

And it's not just about kids. How do you feel when your friends move into a new house? Or when they get a bigger vehicle? Or talk about their husband's Christmas bonuses? How does your heart react when you see someone else doing things you wished your life allowed at the moment? There's danger in that kind of comparative thinking. There's safety in finding your own place between poverty and riches. 

I can still give with what I have. I can look at the place God has me now and focus on the areas I have been blessed with today. I can look at what He has given me as MY portion and find ways I can use that for Him. It won't look like anyone else's and I've got to be content with that. And as long as I'm not fixating on what others have that I don't- I'll be able to use my energy on the right things. 

These verses remind me to turn my focus inward and recognize how amazing my life is, no matter what season I'm in. I hope it encourages you to do the same. 

Have a Christ-filled day, y'all! And thanks for stopping by~ Katie. 

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

30 Days of Proverbs: November 29th

November 29, 2017
Proverbs 29: Parent Diligently 

"Correct your son, and he will give you comfort;
He will also delight your soul."
Proverbs 29:17

I love my kids. But I don't always like them. ::gasp:: 

Sometimes, y'all- they get on my LAST NERVE. They whine or they fight or they shoot Nerf bullets into my brand new, undecorated Christmas tree. They never flush toilets. They can grind one animal cracker into the floor of three separate rooms. They break stuff. I don't know why I buy them markers because they never put the caps back on them. They eat a single bite of every apple in our produce drawer. 

Spoiler alert: THEY ARE KIDS. Being immature and acting immature is what they do. They aren't 19 years old yet, and its not fair for me to want them to behave like a young adult because they aren't.

 BUT WITH THAT SAID- you better believe I have expectations of behavior for them. They're capable of sitting quietly in a church pew. Of singing with the congregation. Coming when they're called. Putting their clothes/toys/crusty markers away. Eating a green vegetable. Keeping 85% of their tub water INSIDE THE TUB. Playing nicely. Taking turns. Sharing. Using loving words. Not using ugly words. Finishing their school work. Emptying trash cans. Wiping tables. Wearing pants. (Bless it.)

I can always tell when I've started to slack off in the Parenting/Discipline Department. It's usually when I find myself irritated and constantly clenching my jaw. A good, ol' TMJ flare up is a sure sign that I'm stressed. And when the kids are stressing me out, there's usually (almost always) a lack of consistent discipline from me that's playing a part in their negative behavior. 

This verse reminds me that when I Barney Fife them and "nip it in the bud", everyone's lives run more smoothly. They thrive better knowing I'm enforcing consistent boundaries and I don't get a tension headache while they body surf through the empty church foyer after Ladies Bible Class dismisses. It's a win/win for us all and Solomon knew it. 

I'm glad for his encouraging reminder this morning. And I hope it encourages you in your parenting endeavors, too.

Have a Christ-filled day, y'all! And thanks for stopping by~ Katie. 

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

30 Days of Proverbs: November 28th

November 28, 2017
Proverbs 28: Don't Desert God's Law

"The wicked flee when no one is pursuing,
But the righteous are bold as a lion." 
Proverbs 28:1

REAL TALK: I have not felt confident lately. I'm fully blaming the sugar/carb combo from the Thanksgiving weekend for putting me in my funk. Or maybe it's hormones. Or my bad hair day. Or the moon. Low tide? High tide? It's gotta be something. 

But regardless of what put me here- I've had to do some serious searching to mentally get myself out of it today. Honestly, it's been about 93% effective. (The kids aren't asleep yet and I'm fighting the urge to bust up in their rooms and lay the Heavy Hammer of Doom on some rear ends. So yeah, I'm still a work in progress tonight.) I've prayer journaled it. I've had a text-therapy session. I've word vomited it all on my husband, bless his heart. I've drowned myself in coffee and Skinny Chocolate. I've vegged out with the kids while they watched Polar Express. 

I'm still not myself, but I'm light years better than I was this morning. I believe that's because I've taken the time today, despite how I'm feeling, to make the choice to follow the righteous path.

I've put myself in The Word. 
I've laid it bare in prayer. 
I've sought Godly encouragement from a friend that points me to His comfort. 
I've opened up all my ugliness and feelings and words to my husband- the person who, despite my insanity, still chooses to love me. 
I've embraced self care. 
I've found joy in small pleasures. 
I've reserved my energy. Instead of running errands that could have been run, I recognized how thin I was stretching myself and made a conscious decision to stay home and stress less. We might not have bananas for breakfast tomorrow morning, but the kids also didn't have to listen to me holler at them in the car on the way to WalMart. WORTH IT.  

This verse reminds me to seek out my confidence from Him, even on days like today when all I really feel like is a busted can of biscuits. So if you ever find yourself fighting to choose what's right and righteous over how you're currently feeling- remember this verse. I hope it encourages you as much as it does me. 

And thanks for stopping by~ Katie. 

Monday, November 27, 2017

30 Days of Proverbs: November 27th

November 27, 2017
Proverbs 27: Sharpen Yourself. 

"Iron sharpens iron, 
So one woman sharpenes another."
Proverbs 27:17
(Pronouns changed. Bless it.)

Friendship is a blessing. 
Friendship is work. 
Friendship is worth it. 

It's effort and listening and rapid fire text messages and making prescheduled weekly phone calls because two households with half a dozen kids between them thrive on chaos and without a reserved time slot the conversation would never happen. It's brutal honesty and unflattering selfies as you discuss age spots and stress induced balding. It's true confessions about how much cookie dough you binge ate or how you hid the good snacks from your kids in the back of the icebox. It's knowing how much each other weighs. 

True friendship is laying yourself bare and not worrying about rejection or judgement. It's sharing your cyclical insecurities and chronic character flaws and having someone call you on them. It's tough love. Pep talk love. Word vomit love. Hard love. Sin identifying love. Ugly haircut love. Sacrificing love. 

It's easy to have "yes" friends. It's easy to be a "yes" friend. Anybody that's ever had an unfortunate hair cut knows exactly what I'm talking about. You know it's ugly and they know it's ugly- but they'd never admit it. Real friends knit you a headband to cover it. 

Being a "no" friend is hard. Especially if you hate conflict as much as I do. And I LOATHE IT WITH ALL MY BEING. But the "no" friends are worth infinitely more because they care more about your spiritual condition than your feelings. 

Let that sink in for a minute. 

I've been blessed with a "no" friend. She is a jewel. She's my person. My own Ann Perkins! We're so close in fact that we have matching sterling silver bracelets with this very verse on them. She calls me out for being a meddling gossip and I tell her when she's being overly dramatic. 

But the thing that makes our friendship so solid is at the heart of this verse: WE ARE MAKING EACH OTHER BETTER VERSIONS OF OURSELVES. She is such a strong believer; her faith is so strong that she can't help but make me realize my own faults because her Light shines so brightly. 

And that's what God wants for us. He loves to see us building one another up through our relationships. When we take the time to suck it up, to tell the hard truth no matter how nauseated it makes us, to help a friend refine themselves through our example- we are blessed. Likewise, when we swallow our pride, drop our defensiveness and listen to loving rebuke when it comes from a true friend- we are also blessed. 

So take a minute today to think about who sharpens you. Thank them for it! And work to keep your own example one that will help to sharpen the people that see it.  

Have a Christ-filled day, y'all! And thanks for stopping by~ Katie. 

Saturday, November 25, 2017

30 Days of Proverbs: November 25th

November 25, 2017
Proverbs 25: Refine Yourself 

"Take away the dross from the silver, 
And there comes out a vessel for the smith..." 
Proverbs 25:4

Sin weakens us. 

It grabs onto a part of our life, sinks in its teeth and consumes us. It leaves us fragile, broken and unable to withstand the pressures life gives us. 

Ask me how I know. 

And that's why God purifies us. He refines us with trials and temptations. He provides us with opportunities to grow away from sin's grasp because He knows apart from it we will be infinitely stronger. Our lives will be cleaned free from sinfulness and we will be better for it if we allow ourselves to be put through refining fires. 

Remember this verse the next time you find yourself in a battle. Hold onto Him and He will pour off any of the impurities that are eroding your life. You've just got to hang on until He is finished. And that'll happen once He sees Himself reflected perfectly in you. 

The fire will make you stronger. Trust Him. 

Have a Christ-filled day, y'all. And thanks for stopping by~ Katie. 

Friday, November 24, 2017

30 Days of Proverbs: November 24th

November 24, 2017
Proverbs 24: Live Wisely 

"For a righteous man falls seven times, and rises again, 
But the wicked stumble in the time of calamity."
Proverbs 24:16

You're only a failure if you don't get up again. 

I had goals for this year- lots of them. Good ones! And I've been mostly successful in them. The last round of Barnabas letters will go out between now and Christmas and it's been such an encouragement. I'm glad I gave myself something to achieve this year. And I'm glad I achieved it! 

It's going to be Christmas soon and after that will come the season of resolutions. Bless it. Begin now to think about how you'd like 2018 to be. What would you like to change? To improve? To eliminate? To better yourself with? 

Find a goal, pray about it and get to work. Know you'll get sidetracked and lost and you might want to quit for a while in the middle. But remember this verse- and when you do fall just remember to get up again, even if it does take some trying. 
I know you can do it!! 

Have a Christ-filled day, y'all! And thanks for stopping by~ Katie. 

Thursday, November 23, 2017

30 Days of Proverbs: November 23rd

November 23, 2017
Proverbs 23: Watch Over Your Hearts Desires 

"My son, if your heart is wise, 
My own heart will be glad;
And my inmost being will rejoice,
When your lips speak what is right." 
Proverbs 23:15,16 

Happy Thanksgiving, y'all! 

I read over these verses and thought immediately of my kids. These verses are the total summation of what I'm most thankful for as a parent: To be training and raising Godly kids. 

Now don't let the platitude fool you- THEY CAN BE HOOLOGANS. 
My Mom recently came to town and the entire time she was here they were horrible. They didn't listen while we shopped at Sam's, they dove under the clothes racks at Walmart and they spent a good deal of the time we were outside on Saturday bickering with each other loudly enough for the neighbors to hear. I spent half the time either correcting them or looking for a rock to crawl under. 


But then, at the end of the weekend, when we'd come in from church Sunday night, we sat down to have our evening prayer time together and they absolutely melted my heart. They were innocent and humble and repentant when we pointed out their behavior over the last few days. They woke up Monday morning with fresh attitudes and willing hearts that had been obediently molded by His love for them. They were brand new kids. Hallelujah. 

So Solomon's right- my inmost being does rejoice when I get to watch them grow in His grace and favor. And this year, it's one of the things I am most thankful for. 

Have a Christ-filled day, y'all! Eat lots of pie! And thanks for stopping by~ Katie. 

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

30 Days of Proverbs: November 22nd

November 22, 2017
Proverbs 22: Life Lessons

"Do not associate with a man given to anger;
Or go with a hot-tempered man, 
Lest you learn his ways,
And find a snare for yourself."
Proverbs 22:24-25

I talked earlier this month about how the people we surround ourselves with impact us. Solomon hits the nail on the head again with this verse. 

Be careful about who you allow to be close to you. You might not realize it, but their attitudes WILL rub off on you. If they're picky and irritable, you could become that way, too. If they lose their temper in traffic, you could begin to blow your horn and huff around when someone pulls out in front of you, too. If they bicker with their spouse or speak unkindly to you about their marriage, you could find yourself becoming discontent in yours as well. 

It's a slippery slope, y'all because the company you keep will keep you, too.

But it's not all bad! Surround yourself with people who's attitudes you admire. Find a friend who is joyful. Be like her. If there is a woman who's marriage sets a good example for yours- take her out for coffee. Listen to her talk about her spouse and family. Pretty soon you'll be speaking that way about yours, too.  Be an encourager. Lift other people up. Set the bar higher. Leave a room feeling better from having you in it. 

Shine His light. Spread His joy. 

And have a Christ-filled day, y'all! Thanks for stopping by~ Katie. 

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

30 Days of Proverbs: November 21st

November 21, 2017
Proverbs 21: God Examines Our Motives

"It is better to live in a corner of a roof, 
Than in a house shared with a contentious woman." 
Proverbs 21:9

This verse is huge for me because I realize how true it is. 

Solomon's words convict me because they make me recognize that I set the tone in our house. First thing in the morning, when I'm fixing my husband's breakfast and packing his lunch for work- if I'm muttering and sighing dramatically and making myself a martyr while I pour his coffee- what kind of message am I sending him? When the kids wake up and find me violently unloading the dishwasher or hurling clothes out of the dryer- what sort of dynamic am I setting up for us that day? With horrible beginnings like those, it's a wonder if any of us would survive until bedtime. 

But if I choose to begin my day smiling at my family- WHAT A DIFFERENCE THAT MAKES. It's much easier to get the kids to cooperate when we've been laughing over our bowls of oatmeal together. It's way easier to call Matt at work and ask him to run by the store on his way home for a few things if I sent him out the door that morning with a hug and a chortle over some inside joke we have. 

I've been given tremendous power. My prayer is that I use it positively. 

Have a Christ-filled day, y'all! And thanks for stopping by~ Katie. 

Monday, November 20, 2017

30 Days of Proverbs: November 20th

November 20, 2017

Proverbs 20: Live Righteously 

"She who goes about as a slanderer reveals secrets,
Therefore do not associate with a gossip." 
Proverbs 20:19, pronouns changed (Bless it.)

Prepare yourselves, Lady Friends.
 THANKSGIVING APPROACHETH and you know what that means- Pie Talk. 

You've helped get the gravy made and the turkey has (hopefully) been carved into un-golf ball shaped pieces and the blessing has been blessed and the food has been devoured and the kids have eaten approximately half a bite of turkey, thirteen rolls and two cups of sweet potato casserole. You've cleared the table, wiped the cranberry sauce from the kids hands, fixed the coffee and have settled back down at the table with your Mom and aunts and cousins and sisters-in-love and nieces for dessert while the kids run around outside with their cousins like the wild hooligans that they are AND THEN THE PIE TALK COMMENCES. 

You've barely taken that first glorious bite when Someone brings up Someone Else's something-or-other. Maybe it's their new car. Or their old car. Or their kids. Or their husband. Or their recent haircut. Or their need of a haircut. Or their weight. Or the way they fixed the green beans. Or their appalling lack of lip color. But whatever "it" is- you know when it begins. And then it becomes an avalanche of words. Suddenly, the dessert you're enjoying has magically turned everyone at the table into Dr. Phil. There are many and various solutions to real or imaginary problems offered and while it's easy to be taken into these conversations, it's equally hard/awkward/uncomfortable to get out of them. Bless it. The struggle is real. 

Now I'm not saying every family's Thanksgiving is like this. I'm not even saying MY family's Thanksgiving is like this. (Because it's really not.) 

I've gone a little overboard because I'm sure on some smaller level, everyone has experienced at least some version of this at their gatherings. (And y'all all know it's true. DO NOT ACT LIKE YOU DON'T.) And this verse reminds me to keep my trap shut when it comes to other people's business. 

When conversations turn into gossip, your best bet is to run. Take out the trash. Go stir the gravy. Refill your coffee cup. Clean the oven. Slice the can shaped cranberry sauce. Go take one of your kids on an unnecessary bathroom run. (Unless they're twelve. Then they can probably handle that business on their own and that would be awkward.)

 Find some excuse, lame or otherwise to get outta there. And if it's totally transparent- EVEN BETTER. It'll be obvious that you're unwilling to fuel those fires and will go an even longer way to keep them from being rekindled later. So go check that ice maker or the oil in your car. You'll feel much better about your heart and mind and conscience when you do. 

Enjoy your pie but work hard to make sure that's the only thing you consume this Thanksgiving. 

Have a Christ-filed day, y'all! And thanks for stopping by~ Katie. 

Sunday, November 19, 2017

30 Days of Proverbs: November 19th

November 19, 2017
Proverbs 19: Point Your Heart Toward God

"Listen to counsel and accept discipline, 
That you may be wise the rest of your days." 
Proverbs 19:20 


One of my resolutions for 2017 was self refinement and bless my heart, I've gotten it. I've felt convictions about the television I watch and the music I listen to and the conversations I have. And it hasn't felt good.

(Worth notice: Having three sets of tiny ears that are literally under my feet 24/7 does WONDERS for my conversation skills. Since THEY LISTEN TO ALL MY WORDS, I better make sure I'm OK with them being repeated. BECAUSE THEY WILL BE.) 

Having my character flaws and shortcomings shown to me hurts. It's painful to have Matt help me see my sinful (mainly, if I'm being honest- overly emotional) reactions to situations. I want my skin to boil off my bones when I recall conversations I've had with friends that took paths down into gossip or unkind critiques of others. It's noooooot fun. I've gotten very familiar with the taste of crow and humble pie this year. 

But this verse reminds me to stick with it and to stay the course towards becoming a better reflection of Him. The hard parts of listening to the Godly advice of others and owning up to the fallout from some poor decisions that I've made will become the strength I need to stand up and make better decisions the next time I'm in a similar situation. Because after I've grown and learned and matured, I will be 'wise the rest of my days' because of it. 

And that's such a comforting promise to me, Chief of all sins and self refinement. 

Have a Christ-filled day, y'all! And thanks for stopping by~ Katie. 

Saturday, November 18, 2017

30 Days of Proverbs: November 18th

November 18, 2017
Proverbs 18: The Power of The Tongue

"She who gives an answer before she hears,
It is a folly and shame to her."
Proverbs 18:13, pronouns changed 

Read through Proverbs long enough and Solomon'll throat punch you on the regular. Sort of like he does to me with this verse. 

Because I'm 1000% a Fixer. 
Come to me with a problem or a situation or lumpy turkey gravy and I WILL TAKE CARE OF IT. I'll have helpful advice or a recipe solution or a Pinterest link about how apple cider vinegar will cure what ails you. 

Sometimes, MOST TIMES, people don't want to be fixed- they want to be heard
Think about it. 

When you've had a long day at home with your kids, or at work with your boss and all the dominoes have fallen and you're feeling like a deflated tire or a cup of cold, decaf coffee with that weird film on the top- What makes you feel better: to have someone sit, listen and be with you in your story, or to have someone interject their two cents with a bunch of "Well-what-you-should-have-done-s"?? Uuuuuuuugh. Just close yer mouth and open yer ears! 

When the kids have covered the dog in PlayDoh and the schoolwork got chocolate syrup on it and I forgot to defrost ground meat for supper, I don't want to call Matt and have him autocorrect my day. I want him to listen, give me a well-timed "Oh man, that's rough.". I want him to tell me that despite my day, I'm a great wife, a rockstar Mom, the best teacher ever and that he's craving grilled cheese sandwiches for supper. 

So the next time you find yourself being like me and itching to interject your Fountain of Wisdom into the conversation- don't. Let this verse remind you to listen to hear, not to respond. And see how much better that makes your friends and family feel when they've had a long/hard/sad/emotional/tiring time of things. 

Have a Christ-filled day, y'all! And thanks for stopping by~ Katie. 

Friday, November 17, 2017

30 Days of Proverbs: November 17th

November 17, 2017

Proverbs 17: Seek Out The Good Things

"Better is a dry morsel and quietness with it
Than a house full of feasting with strife." 
Proverbs 17:1

Ok, but so FOR REAL- please tell me I'm not the only woman who struggles with comparisons. I mentioned earlier this month about my deleting some of my social media accounts and I CAN NOT TELL Y'ALL how free it has made me. Mercy sakes alive. I love it. 

Eliminating unnecessary informational overloads from my life has given me such peace. I'm grateful that my day isn't ordered by how I feel about how much my friends are exercising or decorating or cooking or cleaning. I miss some of their updates, and their adorable kiddos, and the funny memes they post- but honestly I don't miss it enough to allow it to invade my newfound "quietness". 

If you're struggling with feeling inadequate and have begun to find a correlation between those emotions and the amount of time you're spending watching other people live their lives online- TRIM THAT FAT, Sister. Get rid off it; take a gigantic step back from that "house of feasting" you've been welcoming into your life. Think about your internal strife. SOLOMON KNOWS WHAT HE IS TALKING ABOUT. 

 Let yourself take a break from being over saturated with others. Find your own dry morsel and let this verse remind you to gather your contentment from that place. You'll find you'll be much, MUCH happier with less in your life. 

Ask me how I know. 

Have a Christ-filled Day, y'all! And thanks for stopping by~ Katie. 

Thursday, November 16, 2017

30 Days of Proverbs: November 16th

November 16, 2017
Proverbs 16: Plan Your Life Righteously 

"A grey head is a crown of glory;
It is found in the way of righteousness." 
Proverbs 16:31

Our family is preparing for a season of grief. My husband Matt's grandfather is nearing the end of his earthly life and is awaiting his eternal home and everyone is mourning. 
It's painful. 

Nobody prepares you for facing grief with your kids as a parent.

I've lost all my own grandparents throughout different stages in my life, so I'm well acquainted with the emotions present when you prepare yourself to say goodbye to someone who has been such an integrated part of your own childhood, but I've been sort of taken by surprise at the task of relaying this situation to our own young kids. Especially now, because they are so little.  

They're still just learning about the Foundations of our faith. They're still figuring out Jesus' miracles and The Tower of Babel. They're asking questions about Abraham and Issac, and Rahab's lying and if they're going to be able to have their favorite blankets in Heaven with them. They're growing and learning so much that my heart could burst, but at the same time, there are still so many things left they've got to mature into. 

And death is one of those things. 

This verse reminds me of how blessed I am to be surrounded by such an amazing legacy of faith in our family. All our parents, and all our grandparents have been served faithful, Christian lives. They've grown up and spread the Word and planted their roots deeply in Christ's church and have helped us plant our roots right along there with them. And now, as we are raising our own family, they're leaving their fruit behind as an example for us as we help our kids put down their own roots. 

I'm selfishly thankful for their faithful walk because now, as we tuck our kids into bed at night and have our prayers and devotionals- when we begin to talk to them about death and dying and what that means to families- it has not had to be a sad conversation. Our parents and grandparents personal strength and faith has given us the gift of giving our kids The Happy Ending that comes when a faithful Christian dies. Death is not the end. Jesus has given us His victory over it. What richness that brings to our lives. 

 Now, when we have to talk to them about grief, we are able to tell them it is a sweet beginning to eternity and not a painful, bitter end to their lives here on Earth. We're able to explain to them that a funeral for our Christian loved ones isn't a permanent goodbye but only a temporary farewell. And the joy and relief and peace that leaves our kids with is immeasurable. They're continuing to bless our lives even with their passing. The lessons they grew to teach us will continue to bear fruit for us even after they've left us on this Earth without them. 

And that kind of legacy can only be found "in the way of righteousness". 

Please remember my family in your prayers. And thanks for stopping by~ Katie.