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Royalty, Wife, Mummy, friend, teacher, student & fitness blogger

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Godly women

HS Day 592 – The end of an awesome journey

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& so begins my catch up blogs… I have been very lax in getting my thoughts down ‘on paper’ in the last few months, but in my defence, there has been a lot going on.  Hence the several posts that will follow this one.  So, get a cuppa, find a comfy chair, and put the kids in front of a suitably awesome PG movie so you’ll have a good hour and a half of peace and solitude.

During 2016, I started to have lots of things about a local state high school come across my radar, whether it be in person with a friend, a FaceBook post, something in the local paper etc etc.  I didn’t think too much of these things coming up as we do know quite a few kids that go to this school, so I was really encouraged to hear these positive things about a school that years back had quite a bad rep.  It was encouraging to also find out that young adults from our church were heavily involved in chaplaincy programs there.

As more and more things kept pooping up on my ‘radar’, I began to seek The Lord on these issues, originally simply asking why it kept popping up, and then I began asking what it meant (if anything) for our family.  I strongly felt lead to begin looking into the school itself, made a few calls, met with a few parents of kids there.  (Does this sound at all familiar to the beginning of our HS journey ??  ha ha)

As I have each of the 3yrs we’ve been a HS family, I would ask the kids around the time of the September school hols if they are happy to continue with Distance Education at home, if they’d like to return to mainstream school  (I never wanted to be a HS Mum that MAKES her children stay at home.)  Master 11 had had a particularly rough school year, part of this was because he had some serious eye issues, needing 2 surgeries in July & Nov, but mostly because his older siblings had moved onto online DE curriculum, while he remained on the ACE paces.  Compared to what they were doing, his looked boring, uninteresting and without end.  Now, a quick disclaimer here… I am in no way bagging out the ACE Curriculum as I think it’s great !!  I’m simply relaying HIS feelings about it.  We know a good dozen or so adults who went through their education with predominantly, if not all, ACE curriculum, and they went straight into Uni and onto successful careers.   2 of them are teachers at the local Christian school. So it would seem ridiculous to not see the ACE curriculum for what it is, a full & comprehensive educational material.

So, I wasn’t at all surprised that Master 11 was the first to put his hand up… and rather quickly at that.  There were some health issues to deal with first though, but that’s for another blog post.

Master 14 was quietly interested in the idea, but wasn’t at all committed to the decision until a good two months later.  Miss 15 was barely interested at all.  I was fine with that as I was only going to do what was best for each child.   If that meant one back at school and two still at home, that was fine with me.

We went along to our first meeting with the school guidance counsellor.  DH wasn’t able to attend, so I dear friend of mine came along, which I was very grateful for.  To get her thoughts and opinion on the school, the staff, their practises etc etc was a blessing beyond measure !!  Coz, guess what… sadly, some people are so willing to paint a negative light on a decision you are considering… whether it be to homeschool, return to school, sell your house, have a baby (I’m not), follow the Lord’s leading in changing churches, etc etc etc.  With this in mind, it’s always GREAT to have a good Godly friend to walk alongside you.  Their wisdom will help you through the fog of negativity and/or confusion !! Even better.. (if you’ve read my previous post re getting yourself into a Lioness Pride, you’ll see this coming), have yourself a PRIDE of warrior sisters…. it’ll help you so much in any decision making process, as well as just life in general !!

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We headed home from the school that day with the enrolment forms (and copious amount of other forms etc) with 2 children completely on board with going back to school.  Master 14 was now quite excited about it, which would end up building up to an almost annoying excitement which involved a comment nearly every day that went something like “Why do we need school holidays? Why can’t we do back to school now?”  I simply said to him that the many students that have been in mainstream school all year would strongly disagree with him.

Miss 15 was getting more and more interested in going back to school, but still had concerns about the distraction element.  She loves that she can work uninterrupted and without having to deal with break time social dramas.    She eventually made the decision to go back to school, knowing that she needs to be very conscious of making good friendship choices and also have good time management skills.  She sadly decided to not continue dance in 2017 in order to be able to knuckle down to her schoolwork.  I’m not really sure how I feel about this decision as for one thing, she’s very good at it, and two, we all need an outlet to keep us balanced.   I’m hoping the walk to and from school each day will be enough physical activity in the beginning, and maybe once she’s found her rhythm, she’ll also find time for another interest etc.  Having said all that, YAY for her commitment to her long-term goal of being a Paediatric Nurse !!

Now, speaking of walking to school… that in itself was another clink in the chain towards going back to school.  To walk to this school from where we live now would be approx 45mins, if not more.  While we do have a school bus stop right at the top of our street, I wasn’t keen on the kids getting the bus.  This is more about me being far away from the school if I was needed for some reason, then me having any issue with them getting the school bus.  So began the more intense hunt for a house close to the school and the shops (for me as I don’t drive, and for the kids to get to work.)  We had already been looking around at houses for months, as well as slowly prepping our house for sale, as we wanted to downsize, so it was simply intensified.

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We had almost given up finding anything when this lovely home became available.  It was super close to the shops and school.  We went through the motions, but sadly those motions included finding a nice termite infestation in the walls of this lovely home.  While it was super upsetting at the time, it became apparent that God had His hand over the whole thing all along, as just as this contact went belly up, an even greater house came on the market. It is a little further from the shops and school, but still very walkable, and all in all is a much more suitable home for us.

Our house went on the market as soon as we’d signed on the first home we found (the bug eaten one), but as yet we haven’t had a buyer put in an offer.  Lots of interest though, so that is promising.  I would have loved to have moved by start of school but even if we can’t, we know that God has it all worked out and we trust in His plans !!!!

While all this was going on, we continued with our interviews at the school, as each child needed a seperate enrolment interview with their respective year level HOD.  All 3 of the kids were getting really excited about going back to school, while Mum was a little (ok, a lot) teary at the idea of sending them off each day and not having them at home.  We bought uniforms and ticked all relevant boxes for what needed to be done prior to commencing school. (well, except for stationary supplies… I’m still to do that job.)

Master 11, going into High school, was able to attend a ‘High school for a day’ orientation.  It involved an assembly/sorting of classes and a tour of the school, both of which parents came along to.  Once those were done, the parents headed home and our little grade 7s were left to finish their full day at school.  At the end of the day, there was much excitement about new friends, new teachers and new routines.  He was a little anxious about knowing where he needed to be and when, but I assured him he’ll pick it up in the first week.

Master 14 had been beyond pleased with the subject selection he had access to.  He seriously was blown away by the subjects he had available to him.  (Hence his daily excitement and anticipation to return to school.) Each of the kids know people in their respective year level, so none of them are heading back to school with any nervousness re friendships.  I think this is a HUGE blessing for them heading into a new school !!

Also, personally knowing the President of the P & C has set this Mumma’s concerns to rest.  Being a Christian family heading into a secular school, I have my concerns if I let my mind run away with them… but The Lord has constantly been laying on my heart we are to be Salt & Light to the world.  This has also been a talking point with all 3 kids, that they are going into this school as a follower of Christ. They have a responsibility that needs to be taken seriously.  I’m so pleased to be able to have confidence that all 3 have taken this onboard.

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There are such exciting times ahead !!!  Still some uncertainty with our house not being sold etc, but as I’ve already said, we TRUST in the will of The Lord !!!

Here is a  couple of verses that have been particularly helpful to me thoughout this time

Psalm 77:19  – Your road led by a pathway through the sea – a pathway no-one knew was there.

& of course…… Proverbs 3 Trust in The Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him and will make your paths straight. 

And so…..  Day 592 was our last day as a Homeschooling family.  This day was sad in lots of ways, but also very exciting. We have learnt so so much in these 3yrs being together basically full-time !!  We haven’t always gotten it right.. and we still have so much to learn about ourselves and each other, but while our schooling situation may be changing, our TEACHER has not !!!  We continue to lean on HIS teachings, and strive to live by HIS ways.

Blessing Peeps !!  xox

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Awaken, sleeping Lionesses

“If ever there comes a time when the women of the world can come together, purely and simply for the benefit of mankind.. it will be a force such as the world has never known.”  Matthew Arnold,  British Poet & Philosopher.

(Matthew Arnold (24 December 1822 – 15 April 1888) was an English poet and cultural critic who worked as an inspector of schools. He was the son of Thomas Arnold, the famed headmaster of Rugby School, and brother to both Tom Arnold, literary professor, and William Arnold, novelist and colonial administrator. Matthew Arnold has been characterised as a sage writer, a type of writer who chastises and instructs the reader on contemporary social issues.)

I included that little bit of basic info on Matthew Arnold to make the point that I think he was in a very good position to have made the above statement.  And it quite frankly blows me away to think that he made that comment well over 150yrs ago.  I must say that I do tend to think that we’re predominantly in the mess we’re in since the 1960 or 70’s, as I use the rationale that when my parents grew up, there was far more respect shown to adults/elders/those in authority than there is now.  There was more modest dress, stronger family bonds & commitments, and just more consideration shown for others across the board.  So, with this in mind, it’s interesting to read his statement and note how long ago he would have made it.  Clearly, a very intuitive man.  G. W. E. Russell wrote of Arnold, “He is a man of the world entirely free from worldliness.”

This statement by Matthew Arnold has been quoted by Lisa Bevere at the beginning of her messages since beginning her ‘Lioness Arising’ teachings in 2009.

I went through the Lioness Arising teaching series in January 2012 with the lovely ladies from LifeHouse church.  I found it to be such an informative and enlightening teaching, but it’s very interesting to reflect on how I’ve continued to learn from it in these 4yrs between, and I imagine I will continue to learn from it going forward also.

The cover of the book says ‘Lioness Arising… Wake up and change your world”.  Well, wake up I certainly did that year and I’ve never looked back.

Chapter one of the Safari guide (the workbook that goes alongside the book & message series) begins with these words, “Welcome to the pride, my lovely Lioness sister.”  Now, this right here was an eye-opener for me in that lounge room that night in Jan 2012, surrounded by 12-14 relatively new friends as I’d only joined the church the previous October.  Those beautiful women became my pride for the next 3yrs and I learnt so much with and from them.  God had further plans for our family, leading us away from LIfeHouse and to the church family we now call HOME!  As a result, I have a different ‘pride’ now.  The eye-opening point though had little to do with the small group that is your pride, but realising that we, as women of God, are all in the one pride.   We support each other in our day to day within our smaller ‘prides’, but as a whole, we support the entire pride in prayer also.

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My pride today is stunning… stunning and dangerously wide awake !!  To say I love them and are grateful to do life with them is a huge understatement.   What’s fascinating about our pride is that all five of us have known each other for years…  approx 13yrs is the longest I’ve known one of my Lioness sisters, but some are a little longer, and some a little shorter.  We haven’t always been this pride…. it’s actually come together in solidarity just this year.  In these many years leading up, there’s been weddings (actually, just one, mine.  LOL), pregnancies, miscarriages, births, dedications, relationship tensions, job changes, many a school activity or awards night, family tragedy, mind-blowing blessings, and so so much more.  It continues to amaze me that God’s timing is ALWAYS spot on !  We’ve all known each other for a good amount of years, and have always gotten along, but God has seen fit to bring us together as a pride for THIS time in our lives.  All of us are riding through something at present, whether it be health, relationship, parenting, or something else.. and we’re all there for each other and in most cases can well relate to our Lioness sister’s struggles.

Another thing the 5 of us have in common… we all have a Lioness cub that has been entrusted to our care.

When someone has been given much, much will be required in return, and when someone has been entrusted with much, even more will be required.  Luke 12:48 NLt

Our ‘cubs’ range from 10yrs up to nearly 16 (so yes, we need prayer right now peeps.. ha ha).  There is so so much to be aware of when parenting a daughter and I know it’s been said time and time again, but seriously, the biggest keys are being in a Godly marriage (don’t worry if you’re a single Mum, or your husband isn’t walking with The Lord as in those situations, The Lord is the other parent when needed) The Word of God, and having open communication with your daughter.  The next biggest asset after those is being in a Pride of fellow Lionesses also mothering a cub.

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It’s so important to instil into our girls that while they have no choice but to be IN the world, they most certainly don’t need to be OF the world.  This can be crazy hard with the influence of tv, movies, magazines, books, music lyrics & videos etc etc.  To give an example, my daughter is 15, is homeschooled, goes to dance once a week, attends a life-group with girls her age at our church, and attends youth group and church on the weekends.  She also works part-time at a coffee shop twice a week.  Now, while she is free from a huge amount of negative influences that she used to be greatly effected by when she was in mainstream school, she still comes in contact with those of different beliefs, moral standards etc etc and needs to know how to respond in those situations.  Recently there was a situation at her workplace where someone was upset and resigned.  What followed was very adult conversation topics, bad language and a lack of consideration shown by some in the situation.  I need to know that I am doing the absolute best job to equip Miss 15 to best handle herself in these situations.  I’m pleased to say that she did very well, recognising where it would have been easy to slip into the gossiping with others, but refrained from it.  #proudmummamoment .  We can tend to think that if we just have our girls in youth group/life group at our church, all will be fine, or at least better than ‘out there in the world’.  This quite often isn’t the place.  Probably better, yes, but not smooth sailing by any stretch of the imagination.  Youth group and life group usually involves community kids, so therefore worldly issues, swearing, lower moral standards etc etc.  While we would love to just keep our daughters from these, they need to experience them in these years in order to learn and effectively navigate the big world when they in fact delve into it themselves, whether that be via University, the workplace, or social settings.  Not to mention… how are we to save the lost if we don’t interact with those not walking with The Lord.

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You know another important thing to do with your Lioness sisters….. LAUGH…. Laugh until your stomach and sides ache !!  I’m pleased to say that we satisfy this unwritten pride prerequisite quite well….  especially with this one here….  Oh my goodness we laugh a LOT !!  If I’m a little down, my DH will say to me.. “You need a get together with your bestie… go belly laugh together like you always do.” :0)

Through not only the benefit of laughter, but also friendship and prayer support, we are able to journey together in our walk with The Lord, becoming best equipped to help others.  As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.  Proverbs 27:17

In her book ‘Lioness Arising’, Lisa Bevere writes..  We live in a world filled with ever-increasing opportunities.  We are not limited like our sisters in the 1800s.  We have the ability to stretch forth and reach out to others to do this well.  We must look back and ahead.

 

In Luke 4:18-19 we read God’s Spirit is on me, he’s chosen me to preach the Message of good news to the poor, sent me to announce pardon to prisoners and recovery of sight to the blind, to set the burdened and battered free, to announce, “This is God’s year to act!”   In my humble opinion, to most effectively do this, we women NEED to be in a fully awakened and dangerous pride.

To be able to confidently know not only that I would state the following, but my fellow Lionesses would too…  So now I will attack you like a lion, like a leopard that lurks along the road.  Like a bear whose cubs have been taken away.  I will tear out your heart.  I will devour you like a hungry lioness and mangle you like a wild animal.  Hosea 13:7-8 NLT.  So, who didn’t know that stuff like that was in the bible??  ha ha !!

There is so much we need to shield and protect our daughters from in this current day, but at the same time, prepare them for when they go out into the world and encounter those same things.  Matthew 10:16 says Stay alert. This is hazardous work I’m assigning you.  You’re going to be like sheep running through a wolf pack, so don’t call attention to yourselves.  Be as cunning as a snake, un-offensive as a dove.  

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Take this beauty on the right here….  Doesn’t she look all gorgeous, sweet and lovely??  well, she totally is :0)… but she’s also one of the fiercest prayer warriors I know, and she can be counted on to go to war for one of her Lioness Sisters at a moments notice if needed.

There is so so much more I could include in this blog, but the best I can do is suggest that if you haven’t read Lioness arising, or done the study within a group, GET ONTO IT GIRLFRIEND !!!  There’s simply too much at stake in our world right now, far too many sleeping Lionesses who need to be awakened.  We need to be Proverbs 31:10-31 women, standing by our men, honouring them so they in turn can be equiped to do their part in The Kingdom.  But as we all know, marriage is tough…  so we need our Pride in order to stay strong, weather storms, and not buy into the ways of the world.   I can personally testify to the fact that if you are surrounded by like minded, Godly women as your close friends and support system, your marriage is 1000% better.

I’ll finish with a list of Prayers Roars from the Lioness Arising Safari Guide.  Why not make it a new nightly routine to declare one of these.  I’ll include 7 so that you have one for each day of the week.  These really will set you on a fantastic path to discovering what you actually have in your hand, and how effective you can be in & for the Kingdom.

  1.  I realise I have the potential to be a living, breathing solution to human problems.  Lord, lead me as I embark on this journey !!
  2. I am ready to give expression to lovely, virtuous, capable, inoffensive, cunning, harmless, shrewd, trustworthy, faithful lioness daughters who enrich the lives of those around me and gather to strategise how to ‘do good’.  I am willing to take on this challenge !!
  3. This day, regardless of how I look or feel, I choose to echo the declaration “I am fearfully and wonderfully made.”God’s work in me is marvellous.  I am stunning; but more than just looking good, I choose to develop the strength to do good, I am ready to bear some weight and carry my load, because rather than being busy, I will build, I will shift my focus to gain strength and allow hardship to re-make me invincible in Him.  I embrace my strength and choose to run to win, train hard, give it my all, stay alert and not get sloppy with the Word of God, or the seasons of my life.
  4. I present my strength for you service.  God, I refuse to allow anyone to put me in a position of status.  I choose to serve and lift others by asking “How can I help?”.  I will change the way I look at my life of worship.  It is a banquet of refreshing and strength, not a draining burden.  Show me how to be a lioness among Lions and in the process, raise up others in their strength and encourage them to dream again.  I know acts of honour are never lost in translation, so I look to my future with hope because talking less now doesn’t mean having less in my future.  I am a guide, not a guard.  I live to bring people in, not to keep them out, and enlarge my life.
  5. I pray my release means release for others.  Male and female, help me to always remember that marriage is a union, not a battle.  Let me recognise the gender difference as the affirmation of our need for each other.  I need the men in my world to be all that you created them to be.  God bless the dwellings of unity in my life.  We all need redemption and you alone are worthy of my worship. I will stop being contentious and reading too much into gender differences, because you have ultimate preeminence, may you have your say in my life.
  6. Jesus, we are ready to do something impressive and significant. For your body, show me who I am so I know how to both greet and groom my sisters and brothers.  I want to refresh and restore others.
  7. I am ready to be excellently formed and marvellously functioning.  Teach me to hunt, I am ready to grow up, give me the energy and insight of heaven.  Restore all of my healthy maternal affection that fear has twisted.  I am ready to hunt with my sisters.

Many blessings my Lioness Sisters (& any dedicated blog loving Lions still reading)

Let’s stand together and be POWERFUL !!   (Note I haven’t said anything today about who we’re standing against …. coz I refuse to give him more credit than is due.  It’s like a mozzie to a T-Rex….  We are fully armed peeps with the Word of God.)

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xox

 

 

 

 

40th b’day celebration # 1 * CRUISE *

Hi there blog loving peeps !!

Yes, it’s been a while between blogs but life has been cray cray busy.  This past weekend was a much anticipated event… cruising for 3 nights on Pacific Dawn with 11 of my girlfriends !!

To say it was AMAZEBALLS would actually be an understatement.  We all had such a blast !!  The food was great (& not just because we didn’t have to prepare it or clean up after it), the weather was great, the atmosphere was great…. but what made the weekend so memorable was the beautiful girls I shared the time with.

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Simply boarding was a fun event in itself, seeing the reaction to the ship from those that hadn’t been on a cruiseship before.  Going out under the Gateway Bridge and experiencing the atmosphere of setting sail.  It was a tad windy up the top deck, but well worth the experience.

Our first dinner was in the Waterfront Restaurant.  There was a fair bit of movement from that particular spot on the boat, which didn’t sit too well with a few of the girls, but they powered on like the good fresh sailors they were. They view from our table was well worth every swell. (Of course, I personally LOVED every swell, but hey, that’s me.)

The particular cruise we chose was a Comedy cruise, but I don’t think any of  us attended any of the comedy events… we were just so darn entertaining on our own that we didn’t need to go to a show in order to have a great time.. LOL.  Seriously though…  we really did laugh sooooo much at times that there were sore tummy muscels.. and possibly some Depends could have come in handy…Bahahahahaha

To head down the fashion blog street for just a moment, I wore a new jumpsuit onboard that had only arrived the day before leaving. I hadn’t planned to wear it, but when it arrived in time, I thought..  YES.. this is the perfect outfit for my first official 40th birthday celebration.  A friend of mine who has a freak-tastic fashion blog called styleloving2  (CHECK IT OUT) had highly recommended these jumpsuits as being just so versatile.  I was unsure if i’d like the style so just ordered this one, but have since jumped back online and ordered another in black.  And hold on to your hats for the price peeps…  $15.40 with postage cost bringing the total to $24 !!!!  Miss 14 did my make up for me and then insisted on about 200 pictures being taken once I was ready.  I won’t spam you with them all, but here’s one.  And beside it….  my group of lovelies minus one while we were at Tangalooma, Moreton Island.

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Our cruise began with a Sailing party which had a ‘White Bianco’ theme, which is why we’re all dressed in white in the above pic.  Jules is the rebel in Black.  :0)

Sunday involved eating (buffet breakky.. YAY), relaxing, napping, sunbaking, chats and D & Ms, walking, more eating, more napping, more chatting, lots of photos, some ice-cream, more walking (over 10,000 steps per day according to S-Health on my phone) and then dedicated prep time for the evening’s formal night with a Great Gatsby theme !!!  Now, THIS is where the real fun began.  More black feathers have never been seen before… and man did we LAUGH..  this is a shocking picture of me but it shows just how much we laughed.

This was also the night that my lovely girls organised a birthday cake for me.  It was super delicious and was almost polished off by the 12 of us.  There were also birthday balloons, but there’d been a communication breakdown, so they originally read ‘Happy Birthday Flora’  (LOL), but with some clever artistry, it was sorted out.  However, I think I’ll have the ‘Flora’ joke go on for many years to come.

We all headed into the ‘party’ part of the evening which was lots of fun, dancing & laughing ’til our sides ached.  Us schoolmums really can party it up with the best of them.  :0)

Monday morning saw us anchored out from Moreton Island.  Most of the girls were doing the Tangalooma wrecks snorkel tour at 12.30 so we headed ashore on the tender boats as soon as we had breakky and got ready.  It was a lovely warm day, but the girls still found the water freezing after a time and were very glad of their wetsuits.

Once back onboard in the late arv, we got distracted looking at some of the professional pics and I managed to completely skip lunch, hence why I was ravenous by 6.30pm.  The buffet was enjoyed that night more than at any other time.  New Zealand ice-cream was on the ship so that was a welcome treat on our last night.  I didn’t do as many stairs as I would have liked, but still did well staying on-track healthy-living-wise.  Minimal treats at the buffet.. and lots of walking.

While the cruise was a Moreton Bay only cruise, they had said all along that if the weather was fine we would head out of the bay and venture either up or down the coast. We actually did both… several times.  This is what shows on one of the TV channels onboard.

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I didn’t want to not attend a ‘Movies under the stars’ while onboard, so on the last night, 4 or us were up on deck watching Fast and the Furious 7.  I have never seen 1-6, so I didn’t actually get much of the movie, and didn’t end up staying for the whole thing.

Disembarkation morning was a little strange as they had us all waiting in our designated waiting areas to be let off when they called out our group number, but things were going sooooooo slow… and then we realised some of our group had simply walked downstairs and gone straight off, so of course we did the same.

All in all… it was SUCH A GREAT TIME !!!  So many laughs, so many great chats with those that I see all the time, and those that I see rarely.  I was reminded often over the time that I am extremely blessed with the friends God has placed in my life.  Sadly, one of my dearest friends couldn’t be with us, but she was certainly with us in spirit.

Something I learnt or was reminded of this week – Friends are a huge blessing in ones life and should never be taken for granted.

Scripture I lent on during this time –

John 15 : 12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 15 I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.

John 15 “I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit.

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Positioned like a see-saw

I remember sitting under a teaching a few years back about how our posture as a disciple of Jesus Christ should be with one hand stretched upwards to someone in a mentoring capacity.. to someone who is further along in their walk with The Lord than us. Meanwhile, the other arm reaches down, ‘pulling up’, encouraging & discipling someone coming along behind us.  Someone that is a little further back in their walk with The Lord than where we are.

The person you’re reaching up to has a little more life experience than you, so is able to teach and help you through similar situations.  In turn, you can teach & help the one you are encouraging, because of the trials, struggles and victories you have walked through.

I also remember receiving an image about this, back when sitting under that teaching, of one long road with people littered all along it, all at different stages.  I probably should have drawn in it seeing as I wasn’t able to find something that I felt represented it, but this gives you an idea.

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When I had this come to mind last night, the Holy Spirit gave me an image of a seesaw, but it wasn’t like one end was completely up and the other completely down…. it’s not normally positioned in that way, and I don’t believe it would be nearly as effective either.  I think the image of a set of scales where one end has a slightly heavier weight onboard than the other shows a more accurate picture of the common situation, but as the ‘weight’ part of the image makes no sense, I think the seesaw is better.

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This one is more like it.

The person reaching down needs to have the HUMILITY required to fulfil this role in another’s life, while also having the WISDOM to take on this responsibility.

Something that simple cannot be in the equation is pridefulness !!!

Just because I like definitions, let’s look at some now…

First, a ‘secular’ definition of Humility –the quality of having a modest or low view of one’s importance.  While in essence, this is true, I don’t like it one bit as it doesn’t sit well with me when you consider that we are a temple of The Holy Spirit.  We have the power of Christ within us, so when I consider our ROLE in God’s Kingdom, we certainly do not have a low level of importance.  I guess what it comes down to though is the importance of that role, as opposed to the importance of us as a person.  That’s where the pridefulness can come into it.  If we are prideful about our own importance & think that that importance is  seperate to God, that’s when we will run into trouble.

A biblical definition of Humility  –God says when you are humble, you are free from pride and arrogance. You know that in your flesh you are inadequate, yet you also know who you are in Christ.  I LOVE this !!!  So so true !! Free from pride & arrogance !!

Now for Wisdom… the quality of having experience, knowledge, and good judgement; the quality of being wise.

Not bad…. let’s look at it from a biblical point of view though.

Wisdom begins and ends with the fear of the Lord. It isn’t a fear of being struck by lightning or fear of being struck dead but it’s a deep, abiding, holy reverence and respect for the Lord and for His Word, the Bible. The Book of Proverbs has more to say about wisdom than any other book in the Bible. For example in Proverbs 9:10 Solomon, who was the wisest man on earth, at least until Christ came, said that “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.” Where there is fear, there tends to be obedience and God has said He prefers obedience over sacrifice (1 Sam 15:22; Hosea 6:6). Sometimes obedience comes before understanding and when someone obeys what they know to be true, understanding usually follows. Wisdom begins with reverence for God and a fear for Him and His Word. That’s where wisdom begins. Where there is no fear of the Lord, there can never be any true wisdom. It’s just not possible.

Now, both these two traits can be tricky, and not always easy to uphold, especially in weakness during struggle.  It takes real DISCIPLINE to be HUMBLE & use WISDOM  to take the right path when in a struggle or under attack.

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Two other words that I really think needs to come into the scenario is COMMITMENT & RESPONSIBILITY !!  We need to be there for our ‘person’ at all times, even at times of our own struggles.  The only way we can do that is by walking closely with The Lord, digging into The Word & being accountable.

As a mentor, your role is to teach and inspire by words and example, so you can come alongside someone in their personal development and learning development using your life, Christian experiences, and education as tools.. You are a role model to someone. This is a precious responsibility that is to be taken seriously, but also enjoyed. You need to be one who is growing in the Lord, and who takes His Word and precepts to heart and to life. Because someone is placing his or her trust as a counselor and teacher in you, you need to be real and growing to do this right. Therefore, you are the one the Lord will use to provide opportunities for spiritual learning, development, and growth.

Matthew 12:36 & 37 tell us … I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak,  for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”  Words hold power peeps.. in so many ways, so be careful with your words !!!

If The Lord entrusts you with a ‘mentee’  (that’s probs not actually a word, but you know what I mean) then see it as the privilege that it is, and ENJOY it, but never ignore the commitment and the responsibility that goes along with it.

Oh.. and one last thing…. DO NOT TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THIS RESPONSIBILITY !!  Treat it as the GIFT that it is.  You will grow through every moment as a mentor too… it’s not a one-way deal.  Another thing that has been evident in my walk and I believe I can pass onto others and it be of help, is this…  When God leads you in a different direction… be it towards a different person, or away from a person…. LISTEN TO HIM & ACT ON IT !!

Maybe you will be in a mentor type relationship with someone for a very long time, but often you will not.  People with this need or gifting come in & out of our lives at GOD’S will, not ours !!!  We may be of help, or receive help from someone for a season and that be all God intended for each of our journeys.  When that happens…  seek confirmation from Him.. and then accept & move on, being ever watchful for new doors being opened.

Isn’t it FUN being a child of God !!!!!  Seriously, I LOVE IT !!!!  So much to learn, grow in and become !!!!

Blessings peeps !!!  xox

 

 

Being in good company

I’m gonna be honest. .  I’m struggling tonight. 
I want to be walking the right path.. I NEED to be walking the right path as I have little eyes watching me and little ears listening to me.  (and some big eyes & ears too)
However these very encouraging facts don’t make the path any easier.  The bumps are still there,  the ‘stones’ are still thrown, the misconceptions of me by others are still there. 
I solidly believe that I not only witness to my children through things that I say,  but possibly even more so by things that I DON’T.  When I’m abused by a family member and I don’t respond in like tone or with harsh words.  When I’m treated like a ‘goodie-two-shoes’ but choose to stay silent and not ‘defend myself’.
When I’m outright verbally attacked,  but refuse to take the bait and retaliate. .. they see that.   & you know what else they see… the frustration on the person’s face when I won’t lower myself to their level. 
Isn’t it interesting (& frustrating) that we can KNOW that God’s opinion is the only one that matters and yet the darts fired by others still hurt.  I often wish that I was impervious to these comments etc but I also know that I am taught a lesson through everything single dig at me,  every single comment made. .. and every single not-so-subtle insult on Facebook. 
I actually started this blog last night but the fact that I stopped part way through turned out to be a blessing in itself as I actually needed to be reminded of my own words when dealing with someone today.  
Praise The Lord it was actually a really great day today spent at the beach with Miss 14 & niece 17 (well great day except for the sunburnt back of the legs. .. what on earth).  Lots of time to think and talk to Jesus while the girls were out paddle boarding.  Something about being at the beach (I think it’s actually in any natural setting) that gets me closer to God.

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I am constantly blown away of late with the relevance of each mornings devotion and how it has been speaking directly into current situations & struggles. If you don’t do a morning devotion,  I’d really encourage you to as it is just the BEST way to start the day. 
So, getting back to my title. .. with all that I’ve been dealing with in days of late… I am comforted knowing that Jesus was hated,  he was ridiculed,  he was treated as a fool… so when I feel treated like this. . I know I’m in good company. 
Blessings peeps xox

Godly friends help me to be my Husbands greatest supporter !!

Seriously, the school holidays just draaaaaaag on so much.  I’m sure if I could drive, we’d be here there and everywhere during every school hols, but being stuck at home just makes you feel like you may as well be doing schoolwork.  surprise surprise, the kiddos don’t feel the same way.

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We’ve certainly been enjoying the catchups with friends though.  We spent the day with some lovely friends yesterday who have recently moved house, so it was lots of fun to explore their new property etc.  We came home with a few spoils from their garden…  some cuttings and fruit etc.

We have similar age kiddos, with an extra youngster thrown in in their family, so everybody loves being together.. and has a buddy to pair off with.

And then today we’ve had another great family come to visit with us at our place.  Similar situation where there’s lots of kids to buddy up with… the kids just love it… and the Mums do too.

These great times with great friends really brings it home to me that I am hugely blessed in the sisters in Christ department.  It really blows me away when you look back over the years and see how God brings people into your lives at particular times and those friends help you in ways that you just wouldn’t have ever expected or anticipated.  Actually both of these friends I have seen today and yesturday have actually been my friends for probably 10yrs-ish but we’ve really only become very close in the last two years or so.  It’s amazing how God works things in your life in the exact way that you need it.

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With so much negativity around us these days, it’s beyond a blessing to have such Godly women surrounding me.  I know I probably say these types of things all the time in my blog entries, but it really is a HUGE thing in my life.  To be able to navigate the world as it is today, make Godly decisions, be accountable and stay humble… these types of friends are IMPERATIVE as far as I’m concerned.

It think it requires a maturity too that I didn’t have years ago, in order to make yourself accountable to these good friends.  Just KNOWING that you ARE answerable to others, that you’ve ASKED others to pull you up if needed.  It does take a strong friendship to have someone tell you you’re heading down a bad path.. and take on that advice and heed it.

I big one for me that I know I’ve mentioned before is how much I dislike wives dissing their husband amongst other girlfriends.  Even when I lacked the spiritual maturity I’m still working to improve today, it never sat well with me when women would do this.  Way back then, I didn’t even have a grasp of the spiritual implications & responsibilities of our role as a wife (pretty embarrassing to admit it, but I know I need to focus on the positive that at least I have that understanding now and can move forward in that understanding).

I definitely benefit from like minded female friends (wives) around me, and by the same token, struggle a little when around women that do put their husbands down.  It’s not just the obvious of ‘if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all” but the realisation (& then constant reminder) that we are to be our Husband’s greatest supporter.  (even when they’re being a total Jackass.)  I think what maybe others don’t understand about it is that they assume that we just ‘condone’ rubbish behaviour from our husbands when we refuse to bad-mouth them, but our responsibility goes so much deeper than they imagine.  We need to be the one our husband will go to if he is struggling with an issue (possibly that issues is being a Jackass.. LOL)… and he’s not going to do that unless we have a great relationship in the first place.

From what I’ve seen over the years of broken relationships… so much infidelity comes about because someone took something they were struggling with to someone of the opposite sex, OTHER than their spouse.  Seeing this over the years has certainly brought it home to DH & I that we need to be able to go to each other when needed, coz if we don’t keep up that open comfortable rapport between each other, we may be tempted to take it to others … and that’s just a disaster waiting to happen.

So … to sum up… I am extremely grateful for the women that God has put in my life, because they are instrumental in helping me to be a Godly wife, Mother & Friend.

Blessings peeps !!!  xox

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