bible study · courage · exercise · facing fears · faith · fear · journaling · overcoming fear · parenting · scripture passage · trusting God · worry

We’re Growing!

It’s been a struggle waking up at a decent hour in the mornings!  I’ve spent all week trying to get to exercise classes at the gym (most start at 9:30), but I’ve been enjoying not having an alarm clock and I keep waking up WAY later than I should and I keep missing class.  I’ve been going to the gym, still, but it’s been closer to lunch time.

This morning when I returned from the gym, I found Poppa Bear (PB) standing outside talking to some people in a car that was blocking me from pulling into the driveway.  The car belonged to the parents of one of Cub 2’s friends who were just looking for our house apparently (?).  Cub 2’s friend was one of the students who went on a week long service project trip to the Dominican Republic with Cub 2 a couple of weeks ago.  Cub 2, the mama’s boy cub, took his first airplane ride, first trip out of the country, first time ever being away from family for eight days, and grew more independent just like that!  Since returning from the trip, his little cohort of friends have been meeting up at different places to hang out.  Today’s hangout was at the mall.  They were meeting there to catch a movie and eat.  The girl cubs and I headed out to the beach for the afternoon, and PB agreed to drop Cub 2 off at the mall.

Cub 2 and Friends
Cubs 3 and 4 Playing on the Bay

Did you catch that?  Cub 2 was dropped off at the mall to hang out with friends without us.  Me – the worrier – didn’t flip out over Cub 2 being dropped off at the mall to hangout with friends.  Anyone who knows me knows that this was a big deal, but I didn’t even realize that it was a big deal until later this evening.  Listen, I cannot ignore the fact that we are raising two African-American male cubs.  They have labels placed on them without even opening their mouths.  They get judged just by walking in a room.  They could meet up with the wrong police officer one day and not have the chance to pull out their identification.  So, I do not apologize for the worry.  However, what I’ve learned to do is trust God more than worry.

After surviving Cub 2’s eight-day journey to another country by himself, letting him spend a few hours at the mall with his friends is now a piece of cake.  That’s because I spent time growing up, too.  I spent time growing my trust in God.  I started every single morning in the month of June by writing down scripture passages that dealt with worry and fear.  When a worry or fear would creep in, I was equipped for battle.  #BOOM

My Cubs Are Growing Up!

What. A. Great. Feeling.

What is your thorn or sin that’s keeping you from growing up?  Perhaps it’s time to dig a little deeper and arm yourself with God’s word so that you can battle that thing.  God always wins!

The other cubs have had some growth, too, but we’ll save that for another day.  I’m determined to get up on time to catch a class at the gym.

Who am I kidding?  Tomorrow is Saturday.

Mama Bear

 

anticipation · Book of Psalms · expectations · overcoming fear · praise · prayer · scripture passage · trusting God · waiting for something

Practicing our Faith

Wouldn’t it be great if we had this type of direct communication with God?

Wouldn’t it be nice to hear right back from Him?

We may not get an answer right back as though we are using a megaphone, or even in the way that we want it to be delivered, but we will get an answer.  If we could talk to Him directly and have Him get right back to us, we wouldn’t have the opportunity to practice our faith.

When I make my needs and wants known to God, I would love to get an answer TODAY.  Sometimes, TODAY doesn’t happen and I find myself pleading for an answer tomorrow or by the end of the week or by the end of the month (please!) or even by the end of the year!  That’s when I have to put my faith into practice. Psalm 27 SCREAMS faith. I’m going to cut and paste the whole passage below, and I bet you probably already know bits and pieces of it. I want to encourage you to read this Psalm (the whole thing) over and over again if you have to – memorize it – pick it apart.  It speaks to every anxiety-driven issue I have had/am having/will have.  Okay, here it is:

1 The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; Of whom shall I be afraid? 2 When the wicked came against me To eat up my flesh, My enemies and foes, They stumbled and fell. 3 Though an army may encamp against me, My heart shall not fear; Though war may rise against me, In this I will be confident. 4 One thing I have desired of the Lord, That will I seek: That I may dwell in the house of the Lord All the days of my life, To behold the beauty of the Lord, And to inquire in His temple. 5 For in the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion; In the secret place of His tabernacle He shall hide me; He shall set me high upon a rock. 6 And now my head shall be lifted up above my enemies all around me; Therefore I will offer sacrifices of joy in His tabernacle; I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the Lord. 7 Hear, O Lord, when I cry with my voice! Have mercy also upon me, and answer me. 8  When You said, “Seek My face,” My heart said to You, “Your face, Lord, I will seek.” 9 Do not hide Your face from me; Do not turn Your servant away in anger; You have been my help; Do not leave me nor forsake me, O God of my salvation. 10 When my father and my mother forsake me, Then the Lord will take care of me. 11 Teach me Your way, O Lord, And lead me in a smooth path, because of my enemies. 12 Do not deliver me to the will of my adversaries; For false witnesses have risen against me, And such as breathe out violence. 13  I would have lost heart, unless I had believed That I would see the goodness of the Lord In the land of the living. 14 Wait on the Lord; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the Lord! (New King James Version)

Just a little reminder that He’s got YOU and ME and whatever situation we find ourselves in!  Sleep happy!

Peace and Blessings!

family · parenting · scripture passage

Well-Equipped

Today was the last day of flag football for this year.  Cub 1 played early this morning at 9:00 and Cub 2 played at noon.  Had either of their teams won their first games of the day, I would still be at the football field right now.  However, since both cubs experienced losses in the first rounds of the tournament, I am able to get in a few minutes of blogging before starting my report card comments…and I can easily find twenty other things more important to me right now than writing twenty paragraphs about my MVP’s highs and lows for the first quarter of school.

It was a crisp, breezy 34 degrees this morning when we left for the first game.  Now that we are experienced flag football parents, we knew that layers of clothing and warm blankets (Erin’s Originals) were essential to surviving the games today.  We were well prepared and well equipped for what could have been a full day of games.  The most difficult part of the morning was trying to convince Cubs 1 and 2 to dress in layers under their uniforms.  They moaned and whined about not being comfortable.  They had much attitude when we suggested grabbing thicker coats and hats to cover their ears.  But, noooooooo!  They didn’t want to hear it!  Insert another {I TOLD YOU SO} moment!  Not even ten minutes after being outside, Cub 2 was asking to go back to sit in the truck!

Yet, Cubs 3 and 4 (and MB) could have stayed outside all day!  We were well-equipped for the activities of the day.

I started thinking about how important it is to be prepared for all that this thing called life throws our way.  We have to be well-equipped and well-prepared for what lies ahead.  How can I be prepared, you may be wondering?  Equip yourself with God’s word.  I’m not talking about the catchy feel-good phrases that people quote as though they are from the Bible.  I’m talking about real words from God to get you through whatever may come up in your day to day living.  Here are some that have gotten me through (and are still getting me through) my valley and mountain top experiences:

The Lord will perfect that which concerns me, Your mercy, O Lord, endures forever.  Psalm 138:8

Turn all your anxiety over to God because He cares for you.  1 Peter 5:7

Come to me all who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Matthew 11:28

For Jesus Christ, the Son of God does not waver between “yes” and “no”…as God’s ultimate “Yes” he always does what he says.  2 Corinthians 1:19

Be strong and of good courage; do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, he is the one who goes with you.  He will not leave you nor forsake you.  Deuteronomy 31:6

I’m equipping myself with God’s promises because I know I’ll never be disappointed, and I can promise you that you won’t be disappointed either!

Peace and Blessings!