succulents

 

An Open Letter To The Future Therapist of My Children - 

Dear therapist who will one day be counseling my children,

There are two things I need to say right out of the gate:

1. I tried my best.
2. I hope you have a sound machine.

The second point is more of a personal preference rather than a revelation. Having gone to counseling myself, I appreciate when a therapist has some sort of sound machine that makes you feel like you’re at the beach. Gentle electronic waves lapping against the shore tend to help you forget you’re actually in a strip mall off the highway, wedged between the Dollar Store and a nail salon.

 

 

THAT RELATIONSHIP WILL NOT ‘COMPLETE YOU’

If you’re at all familiar with romantic comedies of the modern era you’ve likely heard of or watched the 1996 hit film Jerry Maguire. Many of us can recall the scene when Jerry walks into the middle of a women’s “divorced and lonely group” and divulges to Dorothy how meaningless his life is without her. His speech crescendos with the words “You complete me,” finally proving to Dorothy that he loves her. The movie ends with the two living happily ever after.

If you’re anything like me, romantic stories like Jerry Maguire can lead you to start contemplating Jerry’s philosophy, thinking there’s someone out there who could “complete you.” As you look on your singleness you can feel dissatisfied and even begin thinking of yourself as a second-class citizen because you lack your true soulmate. In an attempt to fill the void you spend months, and sometimes years, searching for the mythical “one” who will supposedly meet your needs and give meaning to your life.

 

 

Do NOT work toward your dream! – Isabel Hundt

STOP working toward your dream. Instead live it today. Chose to live your dream today no matter if you have accomplished your goals or not. If your actions are no longer bringing you the results you are looking for, it is time to look at who you have to BE.

 

 

Our Children, Our Neighbors

If you asked me the single most important insight that has shaped my parenting, it would be this: Children are people.

It seems self-evident. Clearly, they have arms, legs, ears, noses and mouths—enough to qualify. But the idea of their personhood goes far beyond possessing a human body. It goes to the core of their being and speaks to their worth. Children bear the image of God, just like adults. Well, not just like adults. It is true that they are developing physically, emotionally and spiritually at a different rate than adults, but children’s intrinsic worth and dignity does not increase or decrease depending on the rate or extent of their development. As Dr. Seuss has famously noted, “A person’s a person, no matter how small.”

 

 

 

i am loving NO OTHER NAME by Hillsong

its a very Jesus-centric album – every single song is about jesus – no other name by what we can be saved.  i love the lyrics of this powerful anthemic song.  there is is no one higher, greater, more glorious.  jesus only.  the bridge undoes me and as i watched a programme about domestic violence on tv last night my heart was broken afresh with the brokenness of people.  oh how our world needs jesus. we need walls to fall and chains to break.  we need hope for the lost and hurting.  we need hope for those who hurt.  jesus is that hope.  jesus changes lives.  he restores families.  he completely rebuilds people.  he removes guilt and shame and gives us peace and love.   come Lord, come soon.

One Name
Holds weight above them all
His fame
Outlasts the earth He formed
His praise
Resounds beyond the stars
And echoes in our hearts
The greatest One of all
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our delightful girl turns 9 today.  

delightful is the word that God used to describe her and prophecy about her when she was a day old.  it is the word she is.

she adores ballet, frozen, lego, rugby and Jesus.

she convinced me to become a bible in schools teacher because she told me her classmates needed to know about God’s love.

she devours books and strawberries.

she is tenacious, spunky, kind and yes, delightful.

she is my heart.

 

 

 999_10151277754434258_1846207102_n24602_411454724257_536149257_5148043_5837692_n   big mouthclaire and evangeline princesses copy EVANGELINE old 33P1110561P1150170  P1200153  

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Start is one of those loaded words in my life.

Like CONSTANT.  and OTHERS.  (think LOST)

 

Start is a book by Jon Acuff that revolutionised the way I live and think about living.  

I loved it so much that I made it required reading for our SAS course at The River.  

 

There are only two paths in life: average and awesome. The average path is easy because all you have to do is nothing. The awesome path is more challenging, because things like fear only bother you when you do work that matters. The good news is Start gives readers practical, honest, actionable insights to be more awesome, more often.

It’s time to punch fear in the face, escape average, and do work that matters. // Jon Acuff

 

Start is a bit like a travel guide into the unknown lands of adventure.  

It gives you scaffolds as you step out into new seasons and reminds you over and over again that to grow we must start.

It kicks fear and passiveness in the butt and ignites a spark for more.

 

More begins today.

When we start anything is possible.

 

I love the ad above.  Its for a telecommunications company here in New Zealand going through a rebrand.  Starting again.

It almost mirrors some of the stages Jon talks about in START.  Learning.  Editing.  Mastering.

 

Starting is the single most greatest force in the universe.

Start your big bang.

Give me blogging + coffee

For me blogging is an expression of my own personal mission and purpose: to know God and make  Him known.

I read a fabulous quote today over at Jordan Fortenboher’s blog today that describes my own heart for blogging.  “Intentionality gives your blog both direction and momentum.”

Today I join part of a BLOG HOP which explores why I write and what I am working on.  Answering these questions stretches me out of my comfort zone and challenges me to be introspective about something I do for love and love to do.

Like Bunny from THE MASKED RABBIT who invited me to participate in the Blog Hop I question the validity of giving myself the label “writer”.  But here we are.  Writing.   And nearly 3400 posts on my blog probably backs me up.  That is a lot of words used.

Bunny has a fabulous blog that explores life and faith from her perspective as she lives it out.  I have appreciated her as we connect across the miles to talk about Jesus and walking with Him.  She always has something positive and encouraging to say and has an incredibly creative heart.  I think she has an eye for beauty and sees the potential in people.  God is writing a beautiful story through her life.

So to the matter at hand.  The questions.

Read the rest of this entry »

bathroom #DIY wood mirror with shims

The Problem With The Child-Centered Home – WE ARE THAT FAMILY

I’m not a stranger to a child-centered home. For years, we let our kids determine restaurants we ate at, we gave them ample choices, we backed down from consequences, we centered our lives around their extracurricular activities, we added fun kid stuff to every weekend so they wouldn’t be bored, and when they asked us what they were supposed to do for fun, we told them. Some days, we still reap the effects of it. And then, a few years ago, we started to shift to a Jesus-centered home. Instead of child worship, where we bowed to every whim and demand from our kids, we refocused and prioritized our lives. My children didn’t stop being important. We didn’t stop loving them unconditionally or stop meeting their needs. We just stopped trying to fix every problem and giving in to every desire.

 

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CREATING SACRED SPACE – William Matthews

Our World Has Become Overrun With Noise. Loud Noises, Soft Noises, White Noise, Static. There Is Visual Noise Everywhere As Well. On An Average Day You Are Consistently Being Sold And Marketed To Through Billboards, Store Front Signs, Television Commercials, Web Banners, Etc. Companies And Corporations Spend Billions Of Dollars Annually Toward Marketing And Advertising Some “New Must Have Product” That Will Make Your Life A Million Times Easier. And Though We Are Promised Happiness We Often Are Left Wanting, Aching All The More For Something True, Something Real, Something Sacred.

Sacred
\’Sa-Kred\
A : Dedicated Or Set Apart For The Service Or Worship
B : Relating To Religion : Not Profane : Holy
C : Entitled To Reverence, Respect, Awe

Usually When We Think Of Sacred In The 21st Century We Often Think Back To Ancient Relics, Rituals And Rites Seen And Carried Out By Some Catholic, Anglican Or Jewish Orthodox Tradition. But Those Practices Are Simply Physical Representations Of Spiritual Realities That Are Found In The Heart Of All Believers. Every Believer Is A Priest Who Can Minister To God, Every Believer Is A Guardian Of The Inner Fire, And Every Believer Is A Keeper Of A Sacred Heart. What It Boils Down To Is This, People Who Embrace The Sacred Are Given Completely Over To God In Word Thought And Deed. Sacred People See Themselves Set Apart As Holy Unto The Lord And Their Hearts Are Caught Up In The Reverence, Awe And Wonder Of God.

 

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5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Yell At Your Children

In the heat of the moment, you want to act. You want to solve the problem right NOW. If you wait, it will be too late, right? That feeling of urgency, though, is when you’re most likely to yell at your children. But that sense of urgency is actually sending us into a vicious cycle of more yelling and not actually solving the problem.

 

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broken together – Nate Pruitt

Therefore, our brokenness is a part of us, and it enables us to better empathize and understand the broken ones around us, to meet them with love, and offer what we have to offer.

 

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HOW TO BE MARRIED TO AN ENTREPRENEUR – John Morgan

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times…your environment has a huge impact on your success. Your spouse is a major part of your environment. It’s not easy being married to an entrepreneur. Your better half has to put up with the late nights, crazy ideas, and the constant checking of email.

As if marriage wasn’t hard enough, throw an entrepreneur into the mix and you’ve got some extra chaos to deal with. There’s no questioning how important it is for your spouse to support you. Without a doubt the person who’s had the biggest influence on my own success is my wife Brooke.

So who better to talk to you about the important role a spouse plays in an entrepreneurs life than my very own wife?

 

Ads on television make motherhood look so easy. The babies in them are so sweet, so soft, so snugly, so sleepy and the mothers… well, they look so beautiful, peaceful and together.

Reality however can paint such a different picture.

My life is not a commercial. Unless its one of those ones for washing powder and mud.
(yes thats my son, now 12, in the photo!)

Read MORE about The Antidote to Anxiety over at New Zealand Christian Mums – where I’m a contributing writer today

 

I love this spontaneous song from Bethel Church – it reminds us that we dont worship based on what is happening in the world around us but we worship because God is worthy of every song, every honour, every breath.  We are made to bring Him worship.   In those times when it is hard to worship, THAT is the time to choose worship, to fix our eyes upon who He is, His promises, His heart, His faithfulness and to remind our soul and heart of those realities.

 

 

 

OCT

Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint;
But happy is he who keeps the law.  Proverbs 29:18

The flipside of this proverb is the principal and truth that when you have a vision for your life you cast ON restraint – you have discipline and sacrifice in order to focus towards your vision and goal.

Dreams take action.  Hours.  Energy.

Dreams need nurturing and stoking, like a fire.

Dreams require doing and intentionality. 

Intentional dreaming results in intentional living.  There are choices you will make, both yes and no choices, that will influence the success of your dream and the timing of living it out. 

Sometimes we need to say no to things.  The greater YES within us should keep the dream alight.  Yes to the dream means no to distractions, passivity and living on cruise control.

 

What choices do you need to make to achieve your dream?

1 Peter 1:3

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