Tag Archives: direction

True Strength

“Stop trying to be strong and embrace your weaknesses.”               – Pastor Jeremy Deweerdt

We are doing a series at our church. It is entitled ‘Rescue’. In this series, we have been talking about how God rescues us out of many seemingly hopeless situations and how, ultimately, we are (or have been) rescued to be a rescuer (for others). It has been simply amazing and very much eye-opening and life-changing for many, myself included. Today’s message was ‘Rescued from Hardships’. As you can imagine, this is something that many of us have faced at one point or another and something that we may currently be facing as I write this post and as you read along.

There was something very profound that was said in the message that really hit home. Obviously, there were many other great things that were conveyed in this message but I will only touch on this one for now because it honestly made something in my spirit shout “Yes!” My pastor had a number of different hardships that he hit on during this message and then he said the quote above and I knew this was a topic that I needed to do a post on.

Many times, when we are going through difficult times, we try to work things out in our own strength. I cannot begin to tell you how true that has been, in the past, for me. As believers, when we are going through a storm and we say that we “don’t feel God’s presence or strength,” it is many times because we have our hands in the situation and are trying to “fix” it in the way we want it to be fixed. Now, how true has that been for you???

Personally, I have experienced many people that talk about the perceived “strength” of men and women who have found themselves in the role of a single parent. While I do agree there is a strength that shows up in this type of situation, there is also a place where that strength is usually drawn from. I, myself, don’t like to have people tell me how “strong” I must be to have 6 children and to be parenting them alone because I know that is not the truth. My strength, as I have acknowledged before and will continue to talk about until the day that life leaves this earthly body, comes solely and fully from the Lord. I do not parent these children alone because God is my rock and my “co-parent”, if you will. He provides for ALL of our needs. His strength is made perfect in my weakness and I could do nothing without Him. I would not be able to love, guide and care for even 1 child, let alone 6, if it were not for the Lord loving, guiding, caring for and giving me the strength that I need, and being my strength, every single day.

It is kind of funny, to me, that we acknowledge the strength of single parents or the strength it may have took for someone to face their biggest fear and we fail to acknowledge where that strength comes from or what exactly true strength looks like. We are not always quick to acknowledge the strength that it takes to make a marriage work and to parent your child(ren) with your spouse, or the strength it takes to resist temptation, or the strength it takes to be obedient and remain in the will of God, or the strength it may take to continue working a job that you may absolutely hate in order to provide for your family, or even the strength it takes to confess and admit a wrong that we’ve committed against someone. One of the things that I’ve learned, is that we all have weaknesses and strengths. I’ve also learned that many of us like to focus and display our strengths for all to see, while we steadfastly hide our weaknesses. It may be something that we grew up being taught or it may be because we just don’t like those parts of ourselves. Listen, I get it! I grew up being taught to never let anyone see my weaknesses too but I think we need to understand that our weaknesses make us who we are, just as much, if not moreso, as our strengths. And that is okay!

My goal, as a mother, friend and woman, is to teach my children that we all have weaknesses and to not pressure them to ever feel like they have to be perfect, because that is a goal that we can never truly reach on this side of heaven; and to embrace my weaknesses, so that people not only see my strengths but also realize that I am human, I have flaws and that I am, by no means, perfect, although I may appear to be. 🙂 Let’s begin to acknowledge and understand where our true strength lies.

Advertisements

How to Ruin Your Child in 7 Easy Steps

oas_9781621885054_270I am on this journey of reading different devotionals and books. I had not been able to read as much as I’d like to however, lately, I have had this “extra” time on my hands and decided to fill that time with God and with reading. It has been truly refreshing. Recently, I was sent a new devotional, through my Bible app, and I decided to check it out. It was entitled “How to Ruin Your Child in 7 Easy Steps”. Yeah, it was a little weird to me too as first but I promise you I am not making this up.

Usually when we think of having children and raising them, we typically don’t think of harming them and we definitely don’t entertain the thought of ruiningSeven-deadly-sins them. However, as I was reading through this devotional, I began to understand how we really can (and do) ruin our children and make life harder for them, and ourselves, than we may realize. Obviously, this devotional is Biblically-based and, as such, often refers to passages of scripture or sin that opens the door to a parent or guardian ruining their child.

So, here’s a little history (or cheat sheet) on the 7 deadly sins, which is hard-work-vs-lazinessultimately what is used to show how we can ruin our children. The seven deadly sins can be found in various books of the Holy Bible. Here is the breakdown:

  • Lust – to have an intense desire or need: “But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed
    adultery with her in his heart” (Matthew 5:28).
  • Gluttony – excess in eating and drinking: “for drunkards and gluttons become poor, and drowsiness clothes them in rags” (Proverbs 23:21).
  • Greed – excessive or reprehensible acquisitiveness (interest in acquiring money or other material things): “Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, with a continual lust for more” (Ephesians 4:19).wrath
  • Sloth – disinclined to activity or exertion: not energetic or vigorous: laziness: “The way of the sluggard is blocked with thorns, but the path of the upright is a highway” (Proverbs 15:19).
  • Wrath – strong vengeful anger or indignation: “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger” (Proverbs 15:1).
  • Envy – painful or resentful awareness of an advantage enjoyed by another joined with a desire to possess the same advantage: envyjealousy: “Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind. Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation” (1 Peter 2:1-2).
  • Pride – quality or state of being proud: inordinate self-esteem: haughty or puffed up: “Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall”
    (Proverbs 16:18).

As you can see, many of these sins are not things we would normally greed-quotes-1consider to be that bad (or that big of a deal) but God looks at these traits differently than we do. Sometimes we are operating in these things and we do not even know it. Even when someone tries to point these things out in us, many times, we will accuse that other person of being mean or insensitive or just plain wrong about us. Sometimes that may be true but what if they are right about us? Then what?

We often hear people complaining about society and how the world isn’t like it used to be and our youth are not as respectful, compassionate, thoughtful as they used to be but let me pose this question to you. Do
you understand that many of these complaints stem from the way
someone was raised?

pride-quotes-8God has given us, who are parents in any way, the responsibility to raise our children to become the adults that we want to see them become. Raising a child is more than just providing for them financially and physically but it is guiding them spiritually, mentally and emotionally. It is giving them opportunities to make mistakes while they are still under your guidance and care so that you can correct them and help them to understand why something is “this way” and not “that way.” I would encourage any of you that have been given the opportunity to impact the life of a child, in any way, to read this devotional. I truly believe in the saying, “when you KNOW better, you DO better.”

A New Direction

your-future-pic1

So, lately I have been feeling like I have just been “going through the motions” with this blog and with my writing. I have enjoyed writing about the things that I have recently written about however, these are not really topics that I am passionate about so I am going to try to get back to what I do best and know well and I am going to talk about that. This would include just blogging about my life, family and giving encouragement, in any way that I can, through my own story.

I will still periodically talk about fashion and money and all those other things that I still love but I will talk about it as the need arises and as I am inspired to do so. I have learned a lot about myself since I have started writing again, full-time, and I realize that I am not really a person of structure. I mean, I love to have a plan and I love to have things organized but when it comes to having to write about a particular topic, every single week, especially a topic that I enjoy but am not passionate about, I notice that I tend to slack off and not do well with those types of writing tasks so I am going to be true to myself and not going to force it anymore.

I am going to just be myself, write about my life and hopefully you all will still read what I have to say and join in the comments and discussion, as you see fit. Thank you all for your patience and for your loyalty. Those are definitely not common traits in this day and age so I truly do appreciate you all for sticking it out and continuing on this journey with me.

You guys are the best!

So, here’s to the future of reNewedChick and to the great things that I am sure will come from this blog now that I am not going to try to be someone that I am not.

The Hunger Games

Every battle begins with hunger. Whether it’s wealth, power or freedom…we are all hungry for something. Why does this matter? Well, because hunger tends to affect (and be the deciding factor) on the way that we think and behave. Majority of the areas that I am “hungry” in tend to center mostly around my children. There are very few things that I guess I really want for myself, solely. But, I guess that makes sense…right?

I go to a job, that I hate, 5 days a week and I spend time there, really doing nothing, just to earn the almighty dollar (literally, it’s not much). I get home and I am sometimes too tired to even do anything with my children but I suck it up and drive on. After cooking, cleaning, helping with homework – while also doing some homework myself, being the designated chauffeur to my children, getting dinner in their tummies, taking baths, brushing teeth, and bedtime stories, I honestly want to just go to bed and not wake up for a couple of days. But that’s not an option because who’s going to provide for my children, if I don’t?

So, I get up and do the same routine every single day and I must say that this has taught me a lot about myself. One thing that I have come to realize is that I am not super mom, or super woman for that matter, even if I want to be…it’s not happening! I am just a mom that loves her kids more than anything and am doing the best she can with what she has. And I have come to the conclusion that, that’s okay.

I would absolutely love to be able to quit my daytime job and spend that time doing what I love…what I’m passionate about…what I am hungry for. I am working my butt off right now, trying to get to a better place and space in this life so that I can possibly be the role model that I want my kids to follow. And even if I don’t end up ever getting a chance to truly live out my dreams, at least I’ll know that I tried. Okay, who am I kidding…that will never satisfy me! But I digress…

Maybe I’ll be this award winning author or have an awesome blog that everyone wants to read…maybe I will be the entrepreneur that takes great risks and amazing things will follow…maybe I will say something, record something or even write something that will “go viral” (lol) and take my life in a whole new direction. Maybe… I am hungry for change and hungry for something that I have never had and not absolutely sure how to even describe it but I’ll know it when I see it. For now, I am trying to be content in where I am in life but still working to get to where I want to be when this is all said and done.

So, what are you hungry for?