Yesterday after I had my toddler’s class marching around our “wall” in the center of the classroom, yelling when they reached the seventh time with the trumpet blowing loudly I asked them a question: Why did Jericho’s walls fall?
Jericho had completely shut up their city for fear of Israel. There was no way for Joshua to get his men into that city. But then an angel appeared to Joshua with specific instructions. They were to march around the city with the Ark of the Covenant one time each day for 6 days. But on the seventh day they were to do that 7 times and at the end shout as the priest blew the trumpets.
And after my class had reenacted that scene and our make-shift wall fell I asked them why did that wall fall. Was it the marching? Was it the yelling? Was it the trumpets blowing? What made Jericho fall?
God. God made Jericho fall. Why? Because the children of Israel were obedient to His command. Do you think some of those people felt silly waking up each morning to march around the city one more time. Don’t you think it required faith to stand outside your enemies walls and just shout at the top of your lungs because God said so? Their fear didn’t hinder their faith. They obeyed God.
What walls stand in your way today? Has God given you instructions on how to defeat them? What is keeping you from marching around your wall? I am not saying that your wall is there because of disobedience, so please don’t misunderstand me. But I do know that if God can make Jericho crumble at the shout of soldiers then God can remove your wall. God is strong enough. What does God require of us?
Be listening for God’s instructions on how to defeat your wall.
For months and months I have been having conversations with my son, William, about salvation. Our conversations years ago would often be after a punishment. We would explain to him that when he does something wrong it is a sin and sin requires punishment. We have worked our way up from that over the years and our conversations have gotten a little deeper. Continue reading
I woke up to children calling my name. Actually, crying my name. Usually when mornings start like that I know the rest of the morning won’t be much different. Well, I got the kids fed and before I could even begin to make my own breakfast they had begun the “Mom can I’s” of the day. They also like to use “Mom can you…” And it’s exhausting. Before I knew it I was reading books (which I love to do with the kids) and getting drinks and pulling stuck things off of things they shouldn’t be stuck to and my morning had gotten out of control. I hadn’t even had a chance to think for myself yet let alone make my breakfast or have my devotions.
Maybe you don’t have kids but I am sure you can relate to a hectic morning like that. The phone’s ringing, the dog’s barking, you’ve got to be out of the door by a certain time, etc…Everyone knows what it is like to have a hectic morning that gets you frazzled! So how do we deal that? We can’t really prevent them, they just happen. How we handle them is what is important. Here’s how I stay sane when my morning is not!
- Take a breath. A big, big breath. This allows your heart rate to slow down a little bit and just calm yourself. If I don’t take this big breath I will start yelling. And when the kids see me taking my big breath they know they better straighten up!
- Prioritize. What is the most important thing right now? Is it to the dishes or make that phone call? Eat breakfast or mop the floor? Play with the kids or folding the laundry? Decide what matters the most in that moment and drop everything else (for a bit…plan on coming back to it when the most important things are done.)
- Play calm music. One of my very first posts was about the Power of Music. It can either calm you or get you worked up. So choose your playlist wisely.
- Say no. Don’t be afraid to say no to things that you just cannot do. Filling your load will only make it heavier. If your morning is already full don’t attempt to fill it with anything else. If you need to have a few minutes to read your Bible or eat your breakfast tell your child you can’t read that book right now or fill that sippy cup right now. It will not hurt them to wait. In fact, it might do them some good.
- Pray. I saved this for last not because it is the last resort but because I hope it is the obvious reaction to a hectic morning. “When my heart is overwhelmed, it’s to God I cry!” Psalm 3:4 says, “And I cried unto the Lord with my voice and He heard me.” Go to God when you’re having a rough morning and ask Him to help you through it.
Have any of you been part of a blog link up? Many of you probably have. In fact, that’s probably how you came across my blog. But for the sake of the post, let’s assume you haven’t for now.
Link up parties are a great way to meet other bloggers and also get your blog out there. Bloggers will host a link up party on their blog and invite anyone to come and add a link to their own blog posts. Most parties have rules. You will have to link up to a post that relates to the topic of that blog. Sometimes they only let you post one link, other times you can post up to three or even as many as you’d like. Each blog link up party will have it’s own rules so you just have to read them.
Link up parties will be on a certain day each week. For example, I go to ichoosejoy.com every Thursday morning to link up to that party. Then on Friday morning I go to a different blog to link up there. It only takes about 15 minutes to do each morning. It has increased my page views drastically and also has led me to some great blogs that I follow now.
Here are the link parties I join weekly:
Monday- themodestmomblog.com; nourishingjoy.com; whatjoyismine.net; momstheword–livingforhim.blogspot.ca; ishouldbemoppingthefloor.com; foreverjoyful.net
Tuesday- timewarpwife.com; cornerstoneconfessions.com; teachingwhatisgood.com
Wednesday- raisinghomemakers.com; wholeheartedhome.com
Thursday- apronstringsotherthings.com; ichoosejoy.com; thedeliberatemom.com; classicalhomemaking.com
Friday- arabahjoy.com; missionalwomen.com
*UPDATE- I found this awesome list of blog link ups! Go check them out!
There are also Saturday and Sunday link ups but I just don’t do blog work on those days. All of the blogs I link up to have a family and home emphasis. That’s because my blog relates to that. If you have a blog on fitness or fashion then just google fitness blog link ups or fashion blog, or whatever your blog might be about.
Have I missed any other great link ups? I know there are a ton more out there! Share them here! Do you participate in link up parties? What do you think of them?
Welcome back to our weekly series focusing on digging deeper in God’s Word. In the past couple weeks I have given a different ways that I like to study my Bible. But today I want to give you something to think about- a challenge even.
Last week in church, a friend told a story. She said how she was sitting in an empty waiting room and decided to play some scripture songs from her phone while she waited. Not long after starting to play the songs someone called her and asked her to pray about something for her. She shared how God just prepared her heart for that phone call by listening to those Scripture songs.
It got me thinking. How do I prepare my heart for my devotions? A quick skim over Facebook. See if anyone liked my photo on Instagram. Make my coffee. Check my email. Okay, now I am ready for devotions. Or am I? Have I even begun to prepare my heart for the Lord to speak to me? Not at all. And that is a sad story.
And what about during devotions? Is the tv playing in the background? Are the kids screaming on your lap for something (this is a scenario I am very familiar with)? Is your phone sitting next to you for just in case you get a text? Are you really inviting Christ to come speak to you? Are you “setting yourself up for success”? I know it’s not always possible to have complete silence with no distractions while doing devotions, but why not try? Get up earlier if you need to. Stay up later if you need to. Set a show on for the kids for a half hour. Invite Christ to speak to you!
So here’s my challenge for you all this week: have devotions before checking facebook or any other social network each day. Prepare your heart with prayer or godly music. Turn off all the background noise. Invite Christ to speak to you in your devotions this week.
Are you looking for some ideas for your personal devotions? Grace Happening and Young Housewife have been giving some great ideas! You can also find the rest of the Digging Deeper series here.
In what ways can you prepare your heart for devotions? What things do you know need to be set aside until after your devotions?