Saturday, September 17, 2011

Hello Mornings

Inspired To Action Button

I've followed Kat over at Inspired to Action on twitter and through her blog for quite a while.  I'm ashamed to admit how long I've been familiar with her blog yet never read there much.  A few weeks ago the Lord began to do some things in me and I found her blog and began to read.   I was instantly impressed for a couple of reasons.  1. She totally must have a camera in my house. 2. She has written some excellent things to help me and anyone else that cares to read them and put them out for FREE.  Now I have no problem paying for the work that people write or create but put quite simply money is very tight right now.  I can't express how blessed I am that her materials are FREE.  Did I mention they are FREE right now?  

One thing I struggle with is is going to bed at reasonable time and getting up early in the mornings.  I've always struggled with this and I hate that it's so hard for me to do what I need to do to take care of my family and myself properly.  I WANT to get up before the sun rises and have my quiet time with the Lord but I don't.  I WANT to be up and showered before the boys so that I'm ready to tackle the day with them but I don't. I DON'T WANT to be exhausted and short tempered with my boys and husband but I am.  I DON'T WANT to be consistently behind in house work and laundry but I am.  The answer is so simple.  Go to bed early and get up in the morning early.  By doing this I would have my sweet time with the Lord before the day. I would be showered and ready to cuddle with Jacob when he wakes.  I love having a few minutes to sit and hug him and discover what's in that brilliant little 5 year old mind.  If I woke early I could have Bible study with Joshua.

I've read so many books, blog posts, Cd's etc. on this very topic.  We as Christians and homeschoolers have multitudes of help out there to us and I've used facets of all of those materials.  But I never was able to make them my own, so to speak, and follow through with them.  It's hard to take someone else's specific answer to prayer to their own issues and make it your answer to prayer to YOUR specific issues.  If you know what I mean.  All the other materials out there have helped and I've used them in some fashion.  Kat's materials have been different.

So what made Kat's materials different for me you ask?  I'm so glad you asked!!  Kat kept things simple and gave step by step actions to take to help you begin to Maximize Your Mornings.  She doesn't cram her specific morning routine at you and tell you you are failing if you don't follow it to a T.  She includes forms for you to fill out that will help YOU develop YOUR OWN morning routine.  The best part?  Maximize Your Mornings is only 32 pages long!  I  was able to read it in one sitting and the forms were not time consuming in the least.  They were direct and to the point.  Time is of the essence for me.  If I'm sitting down not doing anything something is not getting done (I won't bore you with how many loads of laundry aren't done and how bad my living room and school room look right now). I needed straight forward and Kat gave it to me.  Kat has also graciously included calendars that will help you pray for your kids and husband and so much more.  Really!!  All FREE.  Did I say that already?  Be sure and read through all of Kat's resources HERE.

So this next week begins a NEW journey for me.  I'm going to set my alarm and get up early no matter what time I go to bed.  I'm going to do that until it's a habit for me.  I'm going to do my best to go to bed earlier.  If I'm up earlier and getting things done it should be easier for me to go to bed without feeling like late night is the only time I can get some things done....or feel like that's the only alone time I can get.

I know this will be hard.  I know there are days when I will want to just give up and go take a nap.  But I'm committed to changing things. I'm tired of feeling like a failure.

Is there anything that has motivated you to action lately?  Tell me about it.  I'd love to hear all about it.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Mirror, Mirror On The Wall, I Don't Like What I See

It's 9:45 and the lights just went out.  I'm laying there with heart aching after reading about the suicide of Trey Pennington.  I'll ready admit that I didn't know Mr. Pennington.  I didn't even follow him on twitter.  What weighed so heavy on me was how hopeless he must have felt to make the choice to end his own life.  I thought of how hopeless I've been at different points in my life.  Many years ago I was very near suicide.  As the tears begin to flow I try to conceal them from my husband laying next to me.  I don't want to have to explain my shame if he asks me whats wrong.  I'm consumed with the children who are starving, dyeing of preventable diseases.  How hopeless must they feel?  That hopelessness eats them up from inside.

I'm standing in my (admittedly) small kitchen railing about the injustice of having to endure this travesty of a kitchen, house even.  I'm angry.  I'm fussing because there aren't enough pots and pans to cook the way I want to. My kitchen is the size of some families HOUSES.  I wish I could tell you I realized my own travesty right there in my kitchen and stopped dead in my tracks.  Sadly, I did not.

That night the tears flow hot and I look in the mirror and I don't like what I see.  Shame and disgust eat me up from inside.  I cry out to Jesus and tell him just what I think of myself.  I fully expect the disappointed silence.

His arms around me pulling me up into His lap, holding me tight, so there's no question Who has me.  He says "I know but I still love you." and I feel it in my bones.  I KNOW He does still love me.  Really?  This black heart?  You still love me?  INCONCEIVABLE!!  How?  Why?  "Because you hate the black Paige.  You keep pressing into Me so I can wash you white as snow."  I do?  I don't feel like I do.  I feel like I stand and spew black sickness all over my kitchen and house because I'm a self absorbed, whining, bratty child.  No more words, just arms so strong and safe I know the truth that is HIM. He need not speak.  I know and feel His truth in His all consuming grip.

You've probably noticed a bit of a focus change here on my blog over the last few weeks and even this year.  God wrecked my whole idea of life before Christmas 2010.  I've not known what to do with myself, this blog, since then.  The last few weeks the Lord has been making my call clearer.  Things carried from childhood are starting to make sense.  Things that didn't make sense before are getting clearer.  Praise the Lord!!

I'll still write about homeschooling and my family.  I'll just be sharing more about how I'm learning to live in this first world with one foot firmly planted in the third world.  There is so much He wants us to learn.  So much He wants us to do.  Life won't be dull if you'll step into God's story with me.  You won't be able to control it at all but in the end that's where the Life Abundantly will come from.

In honor of Shaun Groves new record Third World Symphony I'm starting a Third World Thursday meme.  What is Third World Thursdays you ask?  Every Thursday I will post something in regards to third world countries, the children and families that live there, their living conditions, how I'm helping a child or family in a third world, how I'm reconciling our first world with their third world, Compassion or any other child advocate organization, projects these organizations are creating to help release children from poverty, a child that needs sponsorship or clean water or food.  You get the idea.  If you are blogging about third world issues, children, needs, or even how to live more simply so that they can simply live, this is the place to link up.  The linky will be active from Thursday to Wednesday for each week.  Come and join me as I seek to be the hands and feet of Jesus for the least of these.

Ready! Set! Go!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Meet the Newest Member of Our Family!!!

I can not tell you how excited I am to post this news!!  This was a long time coming for our family too!  Today Joshua and I ended up having a very serious heart to heart talk about many things but in the end we found ourselves at the Compassion website looking over profiles of kids that needed a sponsor.  I picked the country and Joshua set about looking over boys profiles and reading about each one.  He settled on this handsome guy and I immediately felt that this was the child the Lord would have us sponsor.  We prayed about it and we both agreed that this young man was the one.  So without further delay let me introduce you to....

Dawit from Ethiopia
Dawit is 12 years old and his favorite activities are soccer, swimming and singing.  Maybe one day we'll get to hear his sweet voice singing praises to the Lord. 

We'll be patiently waiting (yeah right) for all our paperwork from Compassion so that we can begin writing letters to Dawit.  I can't wait to tell him how much Jesus loves him and how much we love him too.  

Stay tuned as I hope to be able to share about Dawit and the work of Compassion frequently.

Praising Jesus!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Third World Symphony

I'm 2 days late for this and that truly breaks my heart.  On August 30th Shaun Groves newest album debuted.  Third World Symphony has been a long time coming for Shaun Groves.  You can listen to the whole album AND you can download for FREE the single titled All Is Grace.  Remember your purchase of Third World Symphony will help many a child be released from poverty.


Go on!!  Why are you still here?!?  Get on over there right now and check it out.


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