Holy Ghost

Recently I came across a video on YouTube that absolutely moved me and stirred something up in me. It was a video of a little boy, maybe 7 or 8 years old. He was at the alter of a church just praying his heart out, completely covered by the Holy Ghost, and speaking in tongues! The service was over but he just kept going  and going as people were walking around and watching him. Towards the end of the video the adults begin to freak out a little as they begin to see white specs floating all around him as he continues speaking in tongues. It was just such an amazing sight!

My spirit was stirred. My boys are 4 and 2 years old at the moment. After seeing this video I got it in my head and my heart that I want them to receive the gift of the Holy Ghost by the time they are 5 years old! It might sound crazy to you but all I could think was that the word of God clearly states that it is a gift for ALL who ask to receive it. And as if I wasn’t already stirred enough in my spirit, the following church service I’m at the alter call with my boys. The alter call was coming to an end so we got up and went back to our seats. Next thing I know my oldest peanut says, “mama I wanna go pray some more at the alter.” I was surprised but I was like ok of course go! I went and stood nearby thinking he might get out of hand or just mess around. To my amazement he knelt down, bowed his little head and began to pray. As he continued, he stood up and raised his hands to heaven, his eyes closed tight, and he continued to pray until the alter call came to a complete end. He ran back to me and said, “mama I was praying for Jesus with the Holy Ghost and I was speaking in tongues!”My heart just melted at his sincerity. This only fueled my new desire for them even more!

My husband always refers to John 14:12 saying that he wants his children to do greater things than he’s done and at an earlier age especially when it comes to the things of God. So I’m using now too. I want them to receive the Holy Ghost at an earlier age than I did! In all that was going on in my mind and as I would picture my son receiving the Holy Ghost the Lord took me back to when I received the Holy Ghost. I was at home with my mom. Every day she would go in her room to pray as my brothers and I sat on her bed and watched her or played in the living room. This particular day my mom was having a fervent prayer and I was just sitting there watching her. Next thing I knew she said, “come here Becky we’re gonna pray and God is going to fill you right now!” All I remember after that was the music playing in the background, Remolineando (a Spanish  shout song) and I began speaking in tongues. I remember we were standing and as my lips stammered under the unction of the Holy Ghost I could not contain myself. I was speaking in tongues, weeping, and dancing in worship as the music played. It was an amazing experience! 

Years later as I spoke with my mom about that day she said something that I believe is why God brought it back to my memory. My mom told met hat that morning when she was praying she was seeking the Lord for help in ministering to the congregation my father and she were pastoring at the time. She told me that she felt the Lord tell her, “before you go out there you need to start right here in your home, start with your daughter.” That day when I was only 8 years old, at home, it wasn’t even some amazing camp or service, I received the Holy Ghost!

I feel that is the perfect example of what the word of God means when it instructs us to train up a child in the way he should go. As I’ve said before our children are our ministry, and our most important ministry at that! I think raising our children in the way they should go goes beyond taking them to church with us. I believe it is actively guiding them, teaching them the word of the Lord, and letting the Holy Ghost and faith act on us to minister to them before anyone else. 

So today I just want to encourage you and remind you what a beautiful ministry our children are. I realize how easy it is to get busy with life and the many roles we play outside of being parents. I realize many parents are great assets to their churches and hold many ministries. In all this remember these children are also a ministry and the best one! All we need to do is point them in the right direction. When the job is done, when they’ve grown into the men and women God created them to be they will be able to look back and say my parents ministered to me so that I could become what I am in Christ today! Be ready because I will be sure to let you know as soon as my boys receive that wonderful gift of the Holy Ghost!

  
‭‭“As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth.”‭‭ Psalms‬ ‭127:4‬ ‭KJV‬

“And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.” ‭‭Deuteronomy‬ ‭6:6-7‬ ‭KJV

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Seeing God Through Parenting Eyes

  
I keep seeing so many, too many, things in a completely new light now that I’m a parent. Like now I can say I fully understand why my parents always seemed to be losing their minds… It’s because they were! Raising kids, especially stubborn children is no easy task! I have two boys who are now 2 and 4 years old, and boy it’s a challenge every single day! Some days are easier and some are more difficult to remain calm through but, at the end of the day, my love for them seems to grow bigger and bigger with each day that passes. 

Lately, we have really had to set punishments and consequences for Peanut (our 4 year old) as a result of bad behavior, talking back, and simply being blatantly disobedient. I promise sometimes I think he’s a full grown teenager! Recently we had decided we to walk to the grocery store together as a family. Usually when we do this we will treat the boys to a snack or something special. In this particular day Peanut  was just not having a good day. He threw fits all morning over the smallest of things like having the light on in the living room when he wanted it off. He fought with his younger brother again and again. Point of the matter is he had a few spankings and time outs that morning. Finally we were all dressed and on our walk heading to Walmart as I remembered we had a few dollars on a McDonald’s gift card. I looked over at my husband and whispered that we should sit and buy the boys an ice cream cone and maybe some fries (their fave) to share. We did and we had a good time just watching our boys enjoy their little treat. It was a great day. 

Later on as the boys were napping I began to think, kind of amazed at my husband and I. I realized that although our little guy had misbehaved all morning long when it came down to it, as parents we still wanted to do things to make him happy! He didn’t exactly earn or deserve to have such a treat that particular day but, all the mornings events had completely disappeared from my mind at the thought of an opportunity to bring a smile to his face. 

My mind just took these thoughts over to our Heavenly Father. Again something about being a parent was revealing to me something about how wonderful and loving our God is. That’s exactly how God is towards us and even more so. We make mistakes, we fall, sometimes talking back trying to do things our own way and still at the end of the day He continues to love us. Our Heavenly Father withholds no good thing from us. This great marvelous God whom we have the honor of calling Father still chooses to bless us daily in spite of every bad behavior we may have shown previously just because He loves us and enjoys bringing life and joy to us every day. If us as human parents do this for our children how much more Him! All I can say is that to this day the biggest joy I have found in parenting are the little insights parenting reveals about God’s own character. 
“If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?”

Matthew‬ ‭7:11‬ ‭KJV

The Annoying Precious Moments

For a while my oldest son peanut, who is soon to be 4 years old, would wake up every single night around 2am. And every single night he would sneak into bed with my husband and I. Me being the type of person who needs space and comfort to be able to sleep right, would get annoyed and grouchy. Sometimes I’d give up my spot completely and just make my way over to the couch! Finally, it seemed, peanut was done with this little routine and I was soooooo happy about it. At last I could sleep comfortably by my husband’s side. Until about 2 weeks ago it started again! It hasn’t been every single night but he has been sneaking over to our bed in the middle of the night again every couple nights or so. One of the nights I found myself beginning to get annoyed and suddenly I heard myself tell him, “well you won’t always do this so I’m just going no to enjoy you.” I pulled him into my arms and snuggled until we both dozed off. Sometime in the night my husband took him back to his bed and I was in such a deep sleep I didn’t even notice. Guess I slept well!

This night kind of stuck around in my mind these last few days. My response surprised me. I’ve started to realize that there are many things when dealing with toddlers that can become annoying, frustrating, or just chaotic at times. Things like potty training, or having to hand feed them, maybe cleaning up messes 10 times a day as they learn to feed themselves, and even sharing small spaces and every second of every day with them as they go through their attachment phases. These moments could become a nuisance but they are simply precious moments in disguise.

 I feel I’m a little different than many moms in the sense that I don’t think I want them to stay little forever, I can’t wait to see them grow up! I love seeing them learn new things and words and so on. However, I have this feeling that once they are grown, just like every other mom I’m going to realize how quickly they grew and I’m going to miss those moments from their childhood. My baby won’t always want to squeeze into bed with me. These gorgeous little boys won’t always want to sit by my side in church. These gifts God has lent me will one day be completely self sufficient and go out on their own to fulfill whatever purpose God has for their lives. 

So today I’m going to choose to take the disguise off of these “annoying” moments and see them for what they really are. I’m going to see them as the “precious” fleeting moments that they are because, they are here today and sooner than I realize, they will be gone. I think I’ll simply choose to be thankful for every little moment I get to have with my beautiful boys even the hard ones because after all, they are the greatest gift God has given me!
1 Thessalonians‬ ‭5:18‬ ‭KJV‬

“In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”

  
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God chooses you!

Don’t worry about the mistakes you’ve made. It doesn’t matter how inadequate you feel. Being a mom is a high calling. God has chosen to entrust you with caring for HIS children. He trusts you and knows that you are able to do this. When you feel at your weakest, feel like everything you’re doing is wrong, or simply feel like you’re not good enough remember that HE knows you better than you know yourself and HE says you can. Don’t quit fighting, don’t quit pushing, you are raising the next generation of kingdom fighters. 
Matthew 22:14

“For many are called, but few are chosen.”

Seasons…Tantrums And All!

This week at our Friday night service I found myself completely distracted from the message that was being delivered from the pulpit. It’s not that I had my mind wandering or anything. I was really trying to focus and receive the word of God that night. The problem was there were two little people fighting for my attention, spilling their snacks on the floor, and suddenly screaming to have their way! I ended up walking out of the chapel carrying my one year old and pulling my screaming three year old by the hand. I of course, was completely mortified. As you might guess as soon as we stepped out of the chapel all the screaming and fussing ceased! Really? This happens every time! It’s like these little children just want to keep me away from Jesus sometimes! 

As I stepped outside I found myself accompanied by three other mommies in stilettos dealing with their screaming, hyper, and fussy toddlers as well. As usual the conversations began about how desperately we need a nursery at out church. We began to express how so many times it felt like there was no point in coming to service because we end up outside missing the message that could’ve been just for us, all because of these cute adorable raving lunatics! In the moment we find ourselves frustrated but we can’t help but love our precious babies and understand that sitting through the service isn’t always easy on them. 

They say hindsight is 20/20. I agree. After those moments are said and done, you see it’s understandable that these little ones would get the way they do. So, there we go trying it again the next service. In hindsight you realize that things won’t always be this way. These little toddlers will eventually grow up to be 10, 15 , and on to adulthood. These fussy times outside the church will become sweet memories to laugh over. The best laughs will be when its their turn to be outside with their own little monsters! As I thought about this I was reminded that even God speaks of seasons in His word. “A time to weep and a time to laugh.” Those stick out to me even more so now.  For now we may cry in frustration a bit, but in time we will laugh. I realize how even through these little gifts God has blessed us with, He is ever molding us and ever changing us into the treasure he created us to be. So when you find yourself in those moments be encouraged and remember this season won’t last always. This season will pass and the next one will come. Most of all, remember you are not alone. Though you may not see us, your in good company as other mommies continue to strive in this race to be faithful to our God in all we do. Even more so in raising the treasures he has placed in our care. 

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

P1 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: 2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; 3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; 4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; 5 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;  6 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away 7 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; 8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

Stay Home Mom-Working Mom

The debate always comes up amongst stay at home moms and working moms. Which is harder to do? Working moms will debate that their tasks are much more difficult as they must juggle their jobs/school and still stretch their time and energy to fulfill the mother/wife duties that they have. Stay at home moms will present the argument that being at home with babies and toddlers all day is just as difficult, if not more, than working outsid the home is. 

Well, I’ve had the privilege of experiencing both sides. I’ve been a college student juggling up to 14 units at a time, homework, chores, playtime with my toddlers, and wife duties as well. My children will be 2 and 4 this year! I was fortunate enough to have a husband who worked from home the whole first year of my oldest son. I would come home between classes to nurse then head back. (Luckily campus is 5 minutes away) I would stay up til 1 or 2 am studying and finishing homework. I’d be up by 6 am the latest and off I went. I believe it was the end of last October that I took a step of faith taking time off of school. You see for me this was a step of faith because I do not know when I will return, but I am so desperate and set on finishing my education. I felt Hod was calling me to be home with my children although I so desperately wanted to just stay in school and leave them with sitters. My step of faith was trusting that in God’s time I will return and fulfill my dreams, now I’ve placed every hope and dream into his hands to do with as he desires. Now I’ve been home full time over 6 months. Boy does it have its challenges! I will have to say that I truly believe being a stay at home mom is the more chall gong of the two. At least if you have children that are not yet school aged.  Why? It seems to me that being a stay at home mom requires so much more patience, diligence, and self maintaining. You spend your entire day with children and are limited to actual adult conversations. Keeping your sanity is sometimes the greatest challenge of all! I feel that while juggling work and children you at least get to keep a sense of who you are. You are able to get your mind off of diapers, bottles, and routines for those few hours you are gone. It’s not always easy to remember who you are  outside of caretaker when you’re a full time mom. 

To be honest I look forward to returning to school. I love my children to death! Still there are days when all I want to do is go away and spend some time with other grown ups and not think about my precious boys at all. So if I had to choos which of the two is the hardest between staying at home full time or being a working mom I must say its staying at home. I know that soon I’ll be back in the role of working mom so to all those beautiful mothers who so selflessly make the sacrifice of staying at home full time, I tip my hat off to you in admiration. As of late God has been placing a scripture before me time and time again. I feel it’s Gods way of saying. “this is a temporary stage of your life. They will grow and things will get easier. Your future is in my hands and I have great plans ahead just for you. ”
For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome. 

Jeremiah‬ ‭29‬:‭11‬ AMP

Real Moms Do Not Sleep

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You ever have one of those days in which all you want to do is sleep? One of those weeks in which all you can think of is sleep? Yea I’ve been stuck in one of those for a while now! Waking up at 4 am and my day ending past midnight every day. Wether you work or stay at home with your little ones, if you are mommy to children who aren’t yet school aged you probably have no recollection of what a good night’s sleep feels like. It’s hilarious how things work. Night’s when you think, “yes I’m in bed at a decent time today”, are the night’s you’re 3 year old wakes up with growing pains every hour! Then, you have those nights when you think to yourself, “ok I’ve got 3 hours to sleep” and of course, right as you finally slip into your comfortable position in bed your gorgeous 1 year old wakes up crying at the top of his lungs completely inconsolable thanks to teething!

So as I was saying, it’s been one of those weeks! I actually think I’ve been sleep walking all week long… I’m so serious about this. So much so that I came home from doing laundry Saturday night and lost my car keys. Monday came, my apartment was turned upside down and still no keys! Ended up having to pay $100 for a new key. If that wasn’t bad enough I lost my wallet, a phone charger, and a remote control. Still no clue what I did with them. My defense is simply lack of sleep, well sort of, I feel I’ve been just sleep walking and that is why I’m clueless as to where everything is.

If there is one word to describe being a mom it’s, exhausting! I’m now begging my husband for a weekend getaway just so I can sleep all day, get room service, and leave the cleaning to someone else. If we are being completely honest being a mom is full of joys that unfortunately can be hidden by exhaustion and sleep deprivation more times than we care to admit. Just a friendly reminder from one mommy to another, when we are weak then His strength is made perfect in us. When you really need it He will give you rest.

2 Corinthians 12:9 KJV
And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
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Psalms 127:2 NKJV
… For so He gives His beloved sleep.