Tag Archives: prayers

When We Run Into Problems.

3 We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. 4 And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. 5 And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love. Romans 5:3-5

These verses carried me through the hardest time in my life over 14 years ago. I read this passage again this morning with a different set of eyes. A confident set of eyes. A heart that knows and understands. A life that can testify to it over and over and over again.

Our initial reaction to adversity and problems isn’t, “Well thank you, Jesus. This is going to grow me and strengthen my character.” No. It can be anger, frustration, sadness, disappointment, and so many other things. Certainly not happiness that we get to endure something hard. It’s not a normal reaction. Hey, you’re normal. So, I am I! However, once we get over the initial shock and awe of it, we get to make a choice how we are going to through the problem. Whether the problem is as large as what I endured 14 years ago when my husband walked out or even if it is as small as a conflict at your work, we get to choose to endure it with a confident hope that He will grow us and work it for our good.

So, what do we do after we get over the initial onset of a problem? I wanted to share some things that I do that may help you, too. First, I vent upward. That means I don’t share my problem with someone who isn’t on the same page of life with me spiritually. Because, that person may feed into my anger or resentment where nothing redemptive comes from it. I vent to someone who has compassion but who also brings light to it. They help me process it from a position of forgiveness and understanding. They remind me to trust Him. The conversation is always redemptive.

I slow down. Haste causes us to react instead of respond. It causes a build up of negative emotions and feelings that are hard to come down from. I slow down my responses, my comments, my time. When we slow down, we are able to think more clearly, take captive our thoughts that are negative more easily, and avoid making the mistake of saying or doing something we might regret.

I pray and meditate. This keeps my heart soft and refocuses my thoughts. Philippians 4:6-7 tells us, 6 Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. 7 Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. Don’t worry about your problem. Don’t dwell on it. Tell God what you need, and THANK Him for everything He has already done. Everything He has already delivered you from and made better for you. Re-center your thoughts on Him and on thankfulness. When you catch yourself dwelling on the problem, replace that thought with all of the good in your life. Everything you have to be thankful for. THEN, peace will flood your life.

Finally, I am open to change. What if I am the one that is the problem? What if God is not just working something for my good, but what if He is changing ME? What if I created the problem myself? Stay open to accept responsibility. Allow people you trust to speak into your life.

All problems are meant for our growth. I learned a long time ago to say, “Nothing goes wrong in my world.” Instead, every situation is an opportunity to grow. To learn. An opportunity to be a better friend. A better mom. A better wife. A better person. Without running into hard situations, it is impossible to become BETTER. So, with that knowledge, we really can rejoice in hard times. Because, we are then presented with an opportunity for our lives to be better. We may not always see the end from the beginning and know the hows and whys, but we can trust in the One who is working all things, ALL, for our good.


Filed under God Stuff, gratitude, life, Relationships, Uncategorized

Create Your Calm.

Jett blankie

Jett loves his little, blue blankie. If you’ve seen Jett, you’ve probably seen his blankie. We are working hard on getting Jett to leave his blankie on his bed every morning. And, by “WE” are working hard, I mean Kris. It makes mornings harder, because, blankie…..you know.

Last night as I was putting Jett to bed and praying over him, I added, “Thank You for a smooth morning. Thank You that Jett is patient and cooperative and full of understanding. Amen.”

This morning Jett woke up happy and cooperative and saying, “yes ma’am” to leaving blankie on his bed. Inside, I was thanking sweet Jesus for such a smooth morning and fist bumping Him in my heart. ‘Cause, we got this.

Then, my sweet, cooperative boy spilled my entire cup of coffee all over the coffee table. All over my phone, my iPad, my favorite books, his Legos, and whatever else was in that line of fire. Jett awaited for scary mom to come out. John Henry left the room to get paper towels and not hear scary mom.

And, I paused. I remembered my prayer of a smooth morning. And, I just said, “It’s okay, bud.”

While, we cannot control every part of our day and avoid trouble, we do get choose our response to the bumps and how they control us. And, instead of it ruining our morning, I was able to be a model of peace and self-control and forgiveness to my children. I do not tout this inner fortitude to do this all of the time. I have failed so many times and went scary mom on my children more times than I care to recall. And, self-appointed Holy Spirit in my life, Anna Takle, is always quick to remind me of how I should’ve responded. Bless her. But, today, I made a decision to create my calm. To CHOOSE a smooth morning.

We can pray for things, and that’s okay. We can thank God for things, and that is necessary. But, in as much as I thanked Him for a smooth morning, it was up to me to create it.

You create your calm. You create your peace. You create your smooth. It’s not the hard moments that wreck us or our day. It’s our response to them.

Instead of coming home from dropping the kids off stressed, I came home noticing a beautiful sunrise. I came home pouring out tears of gratitude for this beautiful day. Creating my calm made thanksgiving so easy.

Make the decision to choose your responses today. Create your calm, and let thanksgiving pour out.


Filed under gratitude, Kid Stuff, life, Life Experiences, Motherhood, Uncategorized

He Had Me At Colon Spasm.

So sorry I’ve been MIA from the blog.  And, sorry for the ridiculous title of this post.  I thought I might be dying from the colon spasms a few days ago, but it all worked out okay.  I spent much of last week resting and trying to think of creative ways to drink my food.   That creativity ran out by day one. 

But, seriously, y’all.  Thank you for praying for me the way you did.  I am humbled and thankful!

Now, I’m not one to start yellin’ things like “God caused my pain.”  Because, He didn’t. 

But, He did use it.

To get me still.

I’ve been so focused on accomplishing goals, checking items off of my list, and trying to make this and that happen that I have failed to just be still and listen.

One morning, I woke up earlier than necessary, and I was feeling pretty rotten.  I decided to take a hot bath.  And, I became very still. 

“Okay.  I am still,” I told Him. 

So, I listened.  To Him.  His voice.  Not my friend’s.  Not my mom’s.  Not my sweet pilot’s. 


And, He brought such wonderful reproach in my life.  Yes, wonderful.  Because, it is His goodness that brings reproach.  That corrects.  That tells me I’m not always right.  I didn’t feel condemnation.  That’s not His style.  But, I did feel a holy conviction in a specific issue in my life.  And, listening to Him set me free from it. 

So, my recovery has been more than physical.

And, I’m so thankful.  Thankful that He loves me enough to correct me, so I can live a much more contented life. 

Maybe you are chasing after things so hard right now, and you are not taking time to be still before Him.  To linger with a keen awareness that you are in His presence.  Well?  I’m gonna go out on a limb here and tell y’all to take a moment this week to be still.  He might want to tell you something.  And, that something just might make a big difference.

He is just so good.


Filed under God Stuff, gratitude, health

What I’m Praying This School Year.

JH - 2004

Dear John Henry,

You begin first grade today.  I can hardly believe it.  Really, I can’t.  If it weren’t for the fact you’ve lost four teeth, grown another inch, and expanded your vocabulary, I’d swear you are still the little boy in this picture mesmerized by airplanes. 

Airplanes don’t capture your attention the way they used to.  I’m sure it’s due to the constant exposure and your Daddy Kris being a pilot.  Although, I know you still think that being a pilot is cool.  You do, right?

It’s okay if airplanes and other things begin to fade from your interest list.  What’s important is that your pursuit of Christ doesn’t fade.  That being in relationship with your Creator never grows stale.  Never gets old.

That He always captures your attention.

I prayed the usual prayer I always pray over you last night.  But, just before I said, “Amen,” I prayed something new for you.

I prayed you would begin to hear God’s voice

You know that feeling you sometimes get to make a good choice instead of a bad choice?  Or that feeling you sometimes get to give one of your toys to a friend?  Or that feeling you sometimes get to pray for someone?  That’s kind of what God’s voice sounds like at times.

I’m praying that His voice becomes clearer and clearer to you. 




That’s what I’m praying for you this school year. 

I can’t wait to hear what God tells you.  I know He will tell you what I tell you so often:

I love you, son.


Filed under God Stuff, Motherhood, parenting, prayer, Spiritual Journey

Prayers kids pray.

Our children take turns saying the prayer before we dive into some, I’m sure, delicious meal I’ve prepared.  John Henry not only blesses the food, but he also blesses every ailing person he knows and doesn’t know.  He threw me off Wednesday night when he added this:

“And, I bless that God and Jesus have a good day today in Heaven.”

I feel purr-ty certain they did.

What funny things have your kiddos prayed for?


Filed under Kid Stuff, prayer