Tag Archives: God

Big News About Big Answers

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I have some big news to share with you: I just signed a contract with Little Lamb Books to publish my children’s series, The Big Answers! This is a project that’s been near and dear to my heart for several years, so I’m really excited that Little Lamb is going to bring it to life.

The premise for this series is simple. Little kids ask big questions like “Who is God?” and “What is love?”. But these questions aren’t easy for us parents to answer. Either we aren’t sure of the answer ourselves or we don’t know how to bring it down to a child’s level. Too often, we gloss over the question entirely and miss an opportunity to share something profound with our children.

I believe that big questions deserve big answers, that little ones have the capacity to understand such concepts as God, love, prayer, forgiveness, church, and heaven.

We just need to share these topics in a language and context that kids can appreciate—which is exactly what this series aims to do.

The first book, tentatively titled “Who is God?”, is scheduled for early 2020. I look forward to sharing more with you as this project progresses.

In the meantime, I encourage you to foster your children’s faith by facing their questions head on. You don’t have to be a Bible scholar to “get it right”! Simply ask the Holy Spirit to give you understanding and guidance. Then encourage your kids to ask more questions by reading a children’s Bible together and singing faith-filled songs. As a parent, nothing you do is more important than sharing the love of Jesus with your children.

Do you set aside time to share your faith with your children? What does that look like? Do you find certain resources to be helpful? Share your thoughts below to encourage other readers.

Merry Christmas

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This year, Robby and I are celebrating Christmas in a different way. We’re not worried about gifts, special dinners, or even traveling to see family. This year, all our focus is on this little guy: our new son, Gordon. At only three weeks old, Gordon isn’t old enough to appreciate Christmas, but he’s made us appreciate it all the more.

As I write this, Gordon is snuggled against me in a wrap. He’s content and quiet, giving me a moment to reflect on the meaning of today, this holy day of Christmas.

Now that I’m a mom, I appreciate the story of Jesus’ birth more than ever. As a young couple who had never had children, Mary and Joseph were given the ultimate gift and responsibility: to raise the very Son of God. But God knew Mary and Joseph, and He knew they could handle the job.

Jesus also knew what He was getting into. He knowingly submitted Himself to the frailty of a newborn baby, completely dependent on Mary and Joseph to care for His every need (and babies have lots of needs!).

As miraculous as the Christmas story is, though, it didn’t end in Bethlehem. God is still entrusting Himself to His people—even you! Just as Mary carried Jesus in her womb, we carry the Holy Spirit in our hearts today.

This Christmas, as you celebrate the birth of our Savior, remember that the same God who was born of a virgin lives within you and wants to work in your life. I encourage you to live out this truth on a daily basis, making sure that your words and actions honor the God within you. And as you share gifts with family and friends today, remember that the True Gift is Jesus, and it’s your great honor and responsibility to share Him with the world.

May you have a wonderful Christmas!

~Robby, Ashley, and Gordon

A Pre-Christmas Makeover

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My friend, author Amanda Flinn, really knows how to speak to the heart of mamas. In this guest post, she shares five ways to perform a spiritual makeover, just in time to really appreciate the Christmas season and prepare for the New Year. Be sure to check out Amanda’s blog for more encouragement.


 

At this time last year, I was really in a funk about life.

Not depressed or anything, just overwhelmed, out of routine and really just out of sorts. I was using the cold, dark mornings as an excuse to skip my workouts and my daily quiet time, which definitely added to my sour mood. My marriage was struggling, my gig as a stay at home mom was exhausting and my efforts to follow my dreams were slower than I had hoped. I was basically going through the motions, attempting to celebrate the holidays with friends and family, but not truly engaged. And my feelings were spilling over into my journal entries.

Check out this sad little snippet from November 19, 2017.

“Friendsgiving last night. Nice time, but I also felt tired and a bit disconnected. Aside from eating too much, not sure why.”

Have you been there?

Have you ever spent so much time taking care of others that you have forgotten to take care of yourself? Have you ever been so overwhelmed by life, that you are at the party, but not truly present? Have you ever been so mentally and physically exhausted that you have started medicating with Netflix rather than the Word of God?

That is where I was last year.  And that is where I know so many mommas are at today.

The holiday season is busy and demanding and often times overstimulating, with added pressures to make everything perfect for our families and our friends. We are bombarded by extra activities, extra spending and extra calories and before we know it our schedule, bank account and waistline have been zapped.

What we need, and what I began last year, is a pre-Christmas makeover. A reset of our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual self. A re-boost of our entire being. A reminder that it is important to take care of ourselves and that by doing so, we can better care for others, especially during the holidays.

Here are five simple challenges to start today and get your pre-Christmas makeover in motion:

 

Get Up.

Even if you already wake up early, try getting up thirty minutes earlier than normal. Time alone in the morning is vital to your success. This process starts by telling yourself the night before that you will get up on time, no matter what. If you know you are getting up earlier, then you may need to go to bed earlier. Adjust it out and make it happen.

 

Get Silent.

Just be still. Be present. If God speaks to you then listen, but do not talk. Set a timer and just be in the presence of your Creator. I find that sitting by a fireplace, or a candle, or a lit Christmas tree helps set the mood. I do not recommend staying in bed, under the covers. Trust me on this one.

 

Get Gratitude.

Start with a few gratitude statements. Example: I am grateful for my health. I am grateful for my coffee. I am grateful for my kids. Then move on to some “I am” affirmations. Example: I am strong. I am capable. I am worthy of love. And finally a big dream statement. If you have a dream inside of your heart, there is a good chance it was placed inside of you by a God that is bigger than any dream you could ever imagine. What big idea are you sitting on and waiting around for that you need to hand over to the one who created it? Example: I want to write a children’s picture book. (That was mine last year.)

 

Get Reading.

Spending a few minutes in God’s Word at the beginning of each day is a game changer. There are so many places to start and a multitude of reading plans to guide you through. The book and verse does not matter, just an open heart and a willingness to hear from God. I find that journaling about what I’ve read really helps with this process.

 

Get Moving.

This could be a short walk, a few stretches or a thirty second wall sit. Just spend a few minutes moving your body and build from there. Looking back at my journal, this part of my morning was pretty basic for the first two weeks. After that, I was able to challenge myself to actual thirty minute workouts (which pushed me to get up even a few minutes sooner than before).

 

All of these challenges are simple, but they will take commitment and a willingness to care for yourself—your whole self. Speaking from experience, I know how difficult that can be. I also know how wonderful it feels to come out of that pre-Christmas funk. But like any good plan, it doesn’t work unless you work.

So, get to it. I believe in you and you are worth it.

~ By Amanda Flinn of www.amandaflinn.com