Wednesday, December 29, 2010

From Chaos to Calm

I discovered a great on-line devotional series starting up on Jan 3 "From Chaos to Calm; 15 weeks to a happy home" by Melissa Ringstaff hosted by A Virtuous Women ministry. I know I am starting this self-study I am calling the Proverbs 31 Journey in 2011 but after the chaotic year I have just had and satans attach on my family, this looks really good to add in with my own personal study. Here's a little teaser from the website....

If you have been struggling with your home, your marriage, your children, or just life in general this might be the answer you have been waiting for! We will spend 15 weeks working toward a goal for:

- peace in the heart
- peace in the home
- peace with our husbands
- peace with our children

“Then they cry unto the LORD in their trouble, and he bringeth them out of their distresses. He maketh the storm a calm, so that the waves thereof are still. Then are they glad because they be quiet; so he bringeth them unto their desired haven.” Psalm 107:28 - 30

If that has watered your appetite, click on the book icon and check this 15 week study out! See you there!!!

Believing Him~Pamela

Sunday, December 5, 2010

God's Calling for 2011

Its been one of those months where God has been speaking so clearly. The clearer He speaks, the harder it seems to gets though. I know this is part of the refining process but it is really burning (if you get my drift).

This is the time of year where I start asking God to reveal what it is He wants me to work on in the new year. He has revealed some pretty amazing scripture which has lead me to His desire for me in 2011. I have to admit that I did look a little harder, hoping I might be wrong...hoping He would let me choose another card to play. other cards. So, with a soft groan but willing heart, I submit to this assignment. He knows I would much rather run away and hide from it!

This last year satan has attacked our family in a mighty way. It has been v
ery painful and a dark shadow of that pain continues to follow us into the new year. One of the things we have incorporated into our house rules came from Lysa Terkeurst family rules she posted a while back on one of her blogs. It fits well into our family who seems to want to tear each other down rather then bond and unite. The rule? If it isn't "true, necessary, or kind" then it does not need to be said. We continue to work on this one and they will roll their eyes if I say those words but it holds so much value. God's calling of me in this new year of 2011 matches this. Hang with me, I will get there.

Our inability to get it right as a blended family and apparent inability to correct it has been a thorn in my side. God has led me to read 1 & 2 Thessalonians. I keep being drawn to it in my quiet time and the other day, I again read in 1 Thess chapter two but this time verses 11 & 12 really stood out. I heard God say to my heart "this is what I need from you towards your family in this new year and beyond"...

As you know, like a father with his own children, we encouraged, comforted, and implored each one of you to walk worthy of God, who calls you into His own kingdom and glory.(Holman Christian Standard Bible)

Reading this was painful as I had to admit my failures as a wife and mother...when I personally have not walked worthy of the number of times I have hibernated to my room to avoid the girls nonsense or "drama"...the times I have been too busy and missed a statement that implied someone was hurting...or the words that came out of my mouth that sent the message to the person I was addressing that they were not good enough in my eyes for that circumstance...just to shamefully name a few.

As much as I would rather make "mother of the year" or be a model for the Proverbs 31 wife, I can honestly say I would not even be fit to be considered for either.
I have allowed that shadow, that event, to pull me away from my family when they needed me most.

You know that we treated each of you as a father treats his own children. We encouraged you, we urged you, and we insisted that you live good lives for God, who calls you to his glorious kingdom. (New Century Version)

God has made it very clear what I need to do, but satan is not playing fair. When has he ever? So how am I going to be able to encourage, stimulate and charge my family and myself towards a life worthy of God? Me? Seriously....the worst of sinners, so unworthy...

For you know how, as a father [dealing with] his children, we used to exhort each of you personally, stimulating and encouraging and charging you.To live lives worthy of God, Who calls you into His own kingdom and the glorious blessedness [into which true believers will enter after Christ's return]. (Amplified Version)

What I have going for me is that God is on my side. He carried me through last year, He will stand beside me as my protective shade in 2011 (Ps 121:5). I will arm myself by memorizing scripture in the new year that will strengthen and shield me as His servant and as a wife and as a mother. As I have sought Him out about this task before me, He keeps leading me to Proverbs 31. You know, the women who we dream of becoming yet the women who ignites a fear of failure for not being able to be her. I am not unfamiliar with these passages and have studied them before but this time I am gong to make it a year long quest. I'm calling this the " Proverbs 31 Journey".

I am called by God in this pursuit of a Godly living intentionally, by fearing God, respecting Him, and trusting Him. A Godly excellence that will compliment my husband and allow me to lead our girls, my marriage, and myself to live a life worthy of God. Not only do I do that by demonstrating His own influence in my own life, I teach it to them with my words, my actions, my love. God's divine power will make it all possible.

You know that we treated each of you as a father treats his own children. We gave you hope and strength. We comforted you. We really wanted you to live in a way that is worthy of God. He chooses you to enter his glorious kingdom.(NIRV)

I know every mother feels like a failure from time to time...I can't decide if I'm fighting mad or just wore out with the drama satan has caused in my home. Whatever it is, this mama is on a "Proverbs 31 Journey" by starting with a little less of me (who am I kidding-a lot less of me) and a whole lot more of God while working on meeting the needs of the girls and my husband. I'm disappointed in myself and the way I have reacted or not acted this past year. Seven years and the youngest is gone...I have to change, I want to change.

There are a variety of virtues presented in proverbs 31: 10-31. I plan to take and study one virtue per month. I plan to memorize a verse a week related to this virtue and I hope to write here at least monthly on each virtue...the Proverbs 31 Journey. I plan to start on the virtue of reverencing God.

"As women, our lives must be filled, first and foremost, with Jesus Christ. then and only then can Christ's love spill over first to our husbands, second to our children, then to our homes, our friends, our community, and the world." Sharon Jaynes, Seven Life Principles for Every Women (Jaynes & Terkeurst, 2001)

I want to become a women so filled with Christ that His Grace and love flows onto those around me. Oh that I would inspire them to Jesus.

I am being "sent to strengthen [my husband and children], to encourage [then] in [their] faith, and to keep [them] from being shaken by the troubles [they will] go through (1 Thes 3:2&3). I can do this with God on my side-nothing is too hard for Him (Jeremiah 32:17) .

What is God calling you to in the new year?

Believing Him~Pamela