The spiritual side of parenting a toddler

The spiritual side of parenting a toddler

I really feel like we are in a super sweet spot with Remington.  She’s got SUCH a fun personality, wants to learn, wants to listen (sometimes), and is just generally easy.

(And please spare me the “this will change soon” speech.  I know we go through phases and know that she may not always be easy.  Let me enjoy it while it lasts.)

But one thing I’ve learned in our 1.5 years into this is that I’m understanding SO MUCH about God through being her momma.

I’m learning how much God loves us.  Through several things.  First, how incredibly much I love her- knowing that God loves us infinitely more is unreal. Second, knowing that God gave HIS SON for us (Jesus) while understanding how much I love Remi and how I wouldn’t give her up for anything- He loves us a lot, y’all.

I’m also learning grace and patience. I’m learning by depending on God when the days and moments aren’t as easy, and being led to be gentle and graceful to Remington during trying times. God is THAT  MUCH MORE grace-giving and gentle to us.

I can also VERY CLEARLY see humanity and sinfulness through Remi.  Yes, she’s precious and innocent, but she has a sin nature.  She clearly defies me, disobeys me, and can even be conniving (faking a boo-boo when she wants down from dinner, already!).  We are sinners by nature at birth and WE NEED JESUS.

I’m also learning that so many times God protects me from things- and that I’m not always thankful or even realize it.  I work hard to protect Remi from things, some she knows, some she doesn’t. Sometimes it makes her mad (when she can’t play with the electric plugs, for example) but I have to do it because I love her and care for her.  God does the same for us. He sees more than we can see, and He understands more than we could ever comprehend. So we have to remember that when we don’t understand.

Parents, what does God teach you through parenting? I’d love to hear!

The Person I Want to Be

The Person I Want to Be

I’ve done a lot of thinking over the last few years about the person I want to be.  The wife I want to be.  The daughter I want to be.  The friend I want to be.  The coworker I want to be.

I’m nowhere near that ideal yet, but I try to let those thoughts shape my actions.

Who I want to be includes someone who is thoughtful, positive, happy, faithful, loyal, patient, kind.  I could go on.  I have thought through how that ideal person would respond in situations, and I try to do those things.  I pray a lot for God to keep molding me.

There’s a song called “River God” where the lyrics talk about how stones are smooth once the water passes through.  It takes external situations to “smooth” us into who God wants us to be.

This weekend, I had the honor of going and serving a friend in need.  I did it because it’s where I wanted to be.  It’s where I needed to be.  It’s what that ideal person would have done. She’s caring, she’s a servant, she’s a good friend.

But I don’t want the credit for that.  In sorting out the weekend plans I left behind, I got told “Oh you’re such a good friend for doing that.”  I didn’t go because I wanted any credit or accolades.  I went because there was no where else I wanted to be.

I give the credit to God for his timing – if it was another weekend I wouldn’t have been able to so easily up and go.  If He hadn’t been working on my heart, I wouldn’t have so easily gone to serve. If He hadn’t blessed me with others who served ME so well, I wouldn’t have had the example to go do the same.

All that to say, I’m still working on who I want to be.  But I don’t want people to see me, I want them to see God through me. I am only able to dust off the selfish, the negative, the self-seeking with his help.

Good Things

Good Things

Matthew 7:11 says “ If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!”

I was so so so so (I would add 100 more “sos” there if I could) worried about our situation with Tyler’s job.  I was worried about his hours.  I was worried about what life would look like with him gone all the time. I was worried about being alone so much.  I was worried about when we would find out his assignment after training.

Well, much like the Bible says not to worry, but to pray and ask God about your situation….He, of course, took care of it all.

I have been joking that he answered our prayer in ways that I didn’t even think possible.

He put Tyler on first shift.

That’s right.

My husband got put on days right off the bat.

5 am to 3 pm.

And while he’s NOT a morning person and has to get up crazy early, it hasn’t been a problem.

And even though he works on the weekends, he’s off by 3 pm, so we have evenings together.  I get to cook dinner every night.  He’s home with me.

He has normal hours.

It’s nuts.

We’re both happy.

God did a good thing.

A thing we didn’t even imagine.

All that worry for nothing (of course).

Giving Grace

Giving Grace

Not only have I been trying to be more graceful with myself lately, but also to others.  And let me tell you, it’s hard.  Whooo buddy, it can be hard.

It can be tough to give grace to my husband when I’ve been trying to work on our taxes since January…and all I’m missing is his stuff.  Worldly me wants to be like “I need this tonight. I’m ready to put this behind us. I want to finish this and move on.”  But graceful me says “You’re busy with work stuff.  We have another month to complete this. It can wait.”

Worldly me wants to yell at the friend who was inconsiderate.  Graceful me forgives and forgets.

Worldly me gets frustrated when my doctor is running late and makes me late.  Worldly me’s blood pressure rises.  Graceful me is glad I have a caring doctor who spends adequate time with his patients.  Graceful me takes a moment to pray for the patient who needed extra time with the doctor.

Worldly me wants to be selfish with my time, but graceful me tries to remember others and give some of that time.

There is still so much work for God to do in me, but I’m glad He’s molding me into a more grace filled person.