Tag Archives: Scripture

Week 4 of Advent Printables!

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Week 4 of Advent Printables!

If you missed weeks one, two, or three, feel free to click on the links to catch up!

Our last week is a short one: only 3 days of coloring pages! On the last day, Christmas, I hope you all will join me in reading Luke 2 with our families to celebrate Jesus’ birth.
I also skipped the activities, music, and art altogether, because if you are like me, you are doing a TON of last minute gift wrapping, shopping, and/or other activities! Enjoy these last few coloring pages, and the blog will return to regular programming in the New Year. That being said, I do have another exciting project in the works for the future, but one I will take a LOT more care and time creating. Perhaps I will try my hand at an E-book or curriculum package. Time will tell.
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Without further ado: The coloring pages.

Day 22-Dec 22
Day 23-Dec 23
Day 24- Dec 24
Day 25- Dec 25 – Read Luke 2 aloud with your family, using your own nativity figurines as players on the stage! Get the kids involved, give everyone a character to act out as you read aloud (and hopefully they are able to recite with you!)

Before we all dive into the last few days of our Christmas prep, I want to end this series with this thought: Slow down a minute and think about Christ’s incarnation, and how this is an integral part of the gospel. How does this affect me today? My children? I know this horse has been beaten dead, but what are we doing as we celebrate Christmas? Every day I am reminded by what my children see as my priorities by what comes out of their mouths. “From the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks.” I am giving an example to my children on what Christmas should be focused on. Enjoy this Holiday with your children for what it truly is.
Peace on Earth is a phrase so overused by everyone without much meaning, but it is  beginning to have a different meaning for me now. At some point it was an ambiguous thought. But it is not any more. Peace on Earth? How can that be possible this Christmas when it seems as if our world is changing its ideas of peace, love, joy, hope, and Jesus? Christ did not come to institute an earthly Kingdom *right now* he came to save that which was lost. This does not mean he is not King (He is!) or that he can’t have a material change on the world around us (He can!) But it does mean that the peace on earth begins with the gospel. Because without the gospel, we have no peace. The Holy Spirit brings about regeneration in men’s hearts, and changes men’s lives, and through this, we can see “Peace on earth, goodwill to men.”
Remember too, that God has the power to bring this about, and he did 2000 years ago, starting with one small baby in his Mother’s womb. I am encouraged by the account in Luke 1 of Mary’s submission to some very scary circumstances, that only got harder as she became older. I am amazed by God’s planning and working, even while Jesus was yet in the womb. I am blown away by how God prepared the way for Jesus, using John the Baptist, giving him the Holy Spirit while he was even yet in the womb (Luke 1:15.) God can and will accomplish all his Holy Will, and this Christmas, I am remembering how he did that very thing 2000 years ago, is doing it today, and will accomplish all his holy will tomorrow as well. He is the same yesterday, today and forever. Take comfort in the beauty of the incarnation, Christ becoming sin for us, who knew no sin, and taking upon him our own sins. Peace comes when we recognize God’s Sovereignty, his plan, and  submit to it. From our own hearts, to training and preparing our children as well. Keep it up Dear Mama, God can accomplish all his holy will!

Merry Christmas!

Advent Free Printables Week 2

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Advent Free Printables Week 2

This week may differ a bit from last. Last week was a LOT of Advent activities. This week will focus on just a few, all laid out here. And of course, the Free Printable Pages.  Enjoy! Did you miss week one? That’s ok! Check it out here.

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There is one activity that I KNOW is a lot of fun for this age! Making your very own salt dough ornaments. I stretched it out over DAYS, and it suited a week of “Christmas time” for me. By the time week 2 of Advent rolls around we have parties and meet ups and play dates galore! Something about this time of year lends itself to overwhelming activities. So when it comes to throwing yourself into Advent things to do, this week will be noticeably quieter than last. But the most important part: scripture memorization, is still front and center.

Music contentA beautiful cantata written by Bach. Complete with translations and a bit of backstory in the video description.

Art content: Norman Rockwell is one of my favorite artists, and he has a plethora of beautiful Christmas Artwork. The one linked here is adorable, but a warning, if you do a subsequent google search of Mr. Rockwell’s Christmas Art, be prepared for a lot of typical American Christmas fare, a lot of Santa Claus, Tree trimming, and gift giving. If this isn’t your scene, this one artwork in particular is pretty tame, but if it is, I highly recommend a good stretch at google with your wee ones snuggled in. Lots of laughs to be had, since Mr. Rockwell’s sense of humor shines in his art.

The Coloring Pages:

Day 8- Dec 8 Luke 2:7

Day 9- Dec 9 Luke 2:8

Day 10-Dec 10 Luke 2:9

Day 11- Dec 11 Luke 2:10

Day 12- Dec 12 Luke 2:11

Day 13- Dec 13 Luke 2:12

Day 14- Dec 14 Review: Luke 2:7-12

Now for the activity for this week: Salt Dough Ornaments. We tried these in our house, and it took us almost a full week to do them. We spent one day making the dough, rolling, cutting, and baking it.
The next day, we painted it. It took a lot longer to dry.

We finished out our “gift preparation” week with shopping at A.C. Moore for small wood crafts, and a few acrylic paints and glitter. Using a coupon, all told, it set us back less than $10 for the children to buy and make gifts for one another. Each day, a different child had “time alone with Mommy” painting her set of gifts for the other children. This took me the whole rest of the week. But the anticipation was palpable, and the fun of helping each child prepare, incomparable.

This year, our oldest, who is 7, will sew doll pillows for her sisters. The other two will buy the woodcrafts (with their own money) and use leftovers from last year’s paint and glitter. Hence why this is a “dry spell” for activities this week. I highly recommend a visit to your local Hobby Lobby or other such store.

Eternal Perspective- The Impact of One

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Disclaimer: Although I have strong convictions about what God wants for my life, and my husband and I are in agreement as to how that looks in our home, in our family, I have no authority to tell you how to live your life. I do encourage you to look in scripture with your spouse, and seek God’s will in your life.  But that does not mean I think you need to do things EXACTLY as I do, or that I am some awesome amazing lady who does everything right. I am just a blogger who needs God’s grace desperately, and his peace. Please take my words as just that, words.  This article is meant as an encouragement, not a condemnation of you. Only God knows your life, your heart, your intentions. I’m just expressing how he is working in this area of my own life.

If you have any questions about the article, or disagree with what I’ve written here, I welcome your comments.

I have been feeling a bit discouraged lately. Feeling that, although I know what scripture says about my role as a woman, a wife, a mother,and that I agree wholeheartedly with it.  I just have the nagging feeling, a feeling of frustration and disappointment that there are people in my life who find my calling as wife and mother to be of little value.  I feel as if in choosing to make my role in our home my first priority, in my case, being a full time stay at home, homeschool teacher/Mom, some may think I  waste my own human potential. Like there is something better that other folks think I could/should be doing.
As if, not only strangers, but people whose disappointment I feel palpably, are offended by my rejection of modern womanhood, and the principles it stands for. My life speaks loudly for an ideal that many people view as narrow, old fashioned, a prison for women. Or as Betty Friedan put it: “A comfortable concentration camp” of family life, where my purpose is to be a “parasite.”

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t miss my career, or my schooling, I don’t want to go back to that world of leaving my family behind for personal fulfillment, and selfish ambition. I know that I can still be creative, aspire learn more, do more, and all while making my own home my number one priority. My occupation is to keep my home, love my husband, love my children, be the driving force in our family life. The hub of our home. The Proverbs 31 woman who is a wife, a mom, a business woman, an artist, a compassionate philanthropist, a source of strength and wisdom. A woman whose worth is far more than rubies.

But I do sometimes regret and feel sad that I have lost the respect of people in my life whose opinion I once valued highly. People who value an ideal of womanhood that I have ultimately rejected, in my words and actions.  I wish they could be happy for me, or approve of me. I’d even settle for a healthy sense of respect.
No matter what they say about how feel, actions seem to speak louder than words. I know the ignominy of going to a gathering and having nothing “interesting” or “worthwhile” to say.  Of sitting alone in the corner with my lineup of kids, cutting hotdogs and tossing out little reminders like:
“Keep your skirt down, nobody wants to see your underpants.”
“Sisters don’t like it when you pick your nose and wipe it on them.”
“Please don’t fling your ketchup. It is for eating.”
I have nothing of urgency or excitement to report. No bigwig meetings, no career accomplishments, no amazing trips, no promotion to brag about. My only accomplishment in the public eye is wiping noses and popping out babies. The most exciting promotion I receive is another baby, or a new grade level accomplished, or even more exciting, a lightbulb moment where a child *sees* the truth in scripture, and matures visibly as a result. And while I DO see these as promotions, and I cherish each one, I feel a sense of disappointment that no one else seems to see these triumphs as much more than ordinary life, as if the sheer number of these happenstances make them less precious, or meaningful. They are the stuff of eternal investment. There is nothing more lasting I can do, than to shepherd and guide little souls to a saving faith in Christ, and a life devoted to God’s glory.

So how do I handle this? I write a blog post mostly. Haha!
Well, really, I look in scripture, and my most recent disappointing moments, and subsequent scripture digging led me to writing this post. I wanted to encourage other moms who KNOW the emptiness of “something more” but feel the absence of “something more” if not in themselves, but in their family and friends.
I wanted to encourage you not to give up on Biblical Womanhood because of discouraging outside pressure. Scripture has a lot to say on what our roles as men and women should look like, and it is complete, it is sufficient. Ladies, there is nothing more important than the charge God has given us in our families. Proverbs 31 alone details the value in what we do, the creativity, ingenuity, and patience it takes to be what he expects of us, and God does provide for encouragement, and support, in Titus 2, when he talks about mentorship. So how do we deal with those moments when we feel the red hot gazes of someone who disapproves, or hear the disappointment in another woman’s voice when she hears “where we are now.” Or worse, a casual dismissal of our task.

Firstly, our worth isn’t in impressing other people, no matter how we love them, or crave their approval. The only approval that matters, is God’s.
Here, watch this:

So there you have it. God values us, loves us, sanctifies us, and refines us. It isn’t what people say that matters. What matters is our eternal perspective. Who do we want to emulate, be like? Where is our worth, our value? Is it in “human potential”? As I’ve heard often, humans have potential only to sin. Paul reminds us in Romans: “All have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”  Our human potential means nothing without the work of the holy spirit to regenerate our hearts to conform to what is “that good and perfect will of God.” (Romans 12:1-4) Our human potential, our own selfish pursuits will help no one. But laying down our life, sacrificing our own purpose to fulfill God’s will to love and teach our children, to serve our husband as laid out in Duet 6, Titus 2, Genesis 2, etc. That is something worthwhile, an eternal investment.
We don’t know what God will bring about from that act of submission, not only to our husbands, but to God most of all. We need to stand firm in our conviction, and run right back to what matters. We need to act in the interest of God’s glory, not personal gratification. Who knows how a commitment to God’s purpose will play out eventually?

Just a Season

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imagesLately, as I’m struggling through a few things at a time, I’ve had to say to myself often: This is just a season. A short time in my life, that while it is overwhelming now, will eventually pass, and become a memory of a moment. I wish I had known this before, as it has been helpful in enduring things that are difficult, and with patience I’ve never experienced before.  But then, God hadn’t matured me that far yet.  This is just a season. We are facing so much right now, things that seem insurmountable, impossible to live through, but if being married for 5 years, parenting children for 6, and seeing God work through all of that has taught me anything, it is that a brief moment of suffering, discomfort, and difficulty does not define who I am. God does. He created me, he has a purpose, a plan for me (Jeremiah 29:11) and this moment of sanctification will work as he intends, for good (Romans 8:28.)

Today, during my personal devotions, I found comfort in Psalm 139:
”    O LORD, you have searched me and known me!
You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
you discern my thoughts from afar.
You search out my path and my lying down
and are acquainted with all my ways.
Even before a word is on my tongue,
behold, O LORD, you know it altogether.
You hem me in, behind and before,
and lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
it is high; I cannot attain it.
Where shall I go from your Spirit?
Or where shall I flee from your presence?
If I ascend to heaven, you are there!
If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!
If I take the wings of the morning
and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
even there your hand shall lead me,
and your right hand shall hold me.
If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me,
and the light about me be night,”
(Psalm 139:1-11 ESV)

No matter what my husband and I face, however hard it is, and however I may wish to change these circumstances, there is a peace, and a patience that comes with the “Just a season” concept. Sanctification isn’t easy, but it is worthwhile, as day by day, we become more like Christ.  I hope this thought is encouraging to someone, anyone, because I know it is comforting to me. I wish I had known it years ago… 🙂 But then, it was what happened years ago, that has matured me to what I am today. Regrets? There are none, just thankfulness in the Almighty hand of God in my life. His ways are not my ways, and I do not know what he is doing (Ecc 3:11) but I do know it will be good.