Thursday, December 3, 2015

When a child calls me teacher

"Teacher, will you tie my shoe?"
"Teacher, can you open this?"
"Hi, Teacher I love you"
"Teacher, can you read this book?"
"Teacher, can you help me with this puzzle?"

These are normal statements and questions in my preschool classroom this year as well as other years. It's never bothered me when my children call me 'teacher'. However, because of how often I am called "Teacher" with this particular group I've noticed that it bothers other adults.  I've bit my tongue more than once when one of my precious students was told "Her name is Miss Leah" or "that's not her name". I've even been asked "Do they ever call you by your name?"  While I can see where the adult is coming from in regards to respect, and future teachers. I can't really understand why it's so important that they not call me exactly what I am and what I have been called to be. A mother wants her children to call her mom...for that is what she is. So it is with me as their teacher.

It's a constant reminder of what I am suppose to be to these children, often when I'm disengaged from the children one says "teacher" and I'm instantly reminded of my job and my awesome responsibility to these children.

It's a constant reminder that I am in service to not only my students but to my God, and my place of employment which fortunatly for me is also an extension of my church. To God be the glory not to Miss Leah... Maybe it's WLC's fault that I enjoy being a servant leader.

It honestly warms my heart when a little voice calls me teacher with so much simple joy and love in their eyes... I'm not blessed to be called mommy by a child. I'll take what I can get.

I AM "Teacher"

Jesus is known as one of the greatest teachers in history and some of the people that have had the biggest impact on my life; outside of my family have been my teachers. So now, to be able to turn and give back what was given me I am proud to be referred to as "teacher". It's simple and uncomplicated.

 "Of the 90 times Jesus was addressed directly in the gospels, 60 times he was called Teacher. This was the word the multitudes used. This was how the disciples referred to him. Jesus himself used the term when he said, "You call me Teacher and Lord, and rightly so, for that is what I am" (John 13:13). When Nicodemus came to Jesus by night, he said, "We know that you are a teacher who has come from God" (John 3:2) " ~

How am I much different than that? God has called me to teach, it is what I am, I'm not ashamed of my position I don't feel disrespected when they call me "teacher" and not "Miss Leah"

"Go ye into all the world and teach nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you" (Matthew 28:19 KJV.

The last thing Jesus told his disciples to do was go into the world and make disciples, how were they to do that without teaching God's word?

Who am I to say that "teacher" is not a respectable name to be called when the greatest teacher in all of history and our Savior was called "Teacher" himself.

We were commanded to go and teach, to go and serve others....I'm simply lucky enough to not have to look for chances to do just that, but to get paid( allbeit not a whole lot) to do that each and every workday.
I am servant
I am blessed.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

I'm reminded daily how human I am.
How much I screw up even when doing the right thing.
How imperfect, and sinful I am
I am reminded daily that it's still too much about me and not enough about Him.
Ah, my pride is smarting.
I am reminded daily that I NEED a savior.

We all screw up but like I was encouraged today... God can use our screw ups...I mean God uses us all the time and we screw up all the time. There is hope in that.

"All men will hate you because of me, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved. "Matthew 10:22~

I like to think that I don't believe I'm better than others..but if I sit down and search my thoughts and feelings over the past week those who feel or have been calling me judgmental are probably right probably not in the exact way they are thinking but still judging and not loving. It's not so much pointing at a person and saying I am judging you because...It's not intentionally, its not even willingly. I'm just a sinner and we are all victims and we are all continually creating victims.

Instead of showing love I have whined about not being liked, instead of showing love, I have gotten angry when someone pointed out my faults, cause I tried to point out the plank in their eyes instead of taking care of the one in mine.  Instead of showing Christs love through prayer I have been selfish with my prayers. Instead of encouraging people to come to God I've given them reasons to be pushed away or I have done nothing at all and have lost opportunity. So, no maybe I haven't had thoughts about a specific person but I have thoughts like look at me going to church, going to bible study, reading my bible..look at me...whats wrong with you.

No I'm not the only one in the wrong, it's not ALL my fault...but lets get real, its never all anyone's fault.

So I get thrown an amazing spiral suddenly but not at all. Because my sinful nature was in and I didn't even realize it.

A line in the sand, and the war with Satan rages on.

I should know I can't be luke warm, I can't sit on the fence. In this world sides find your right or wrong. But at some point you lean too far one way.  We were not called to be silent...we were called to stand firm, speak love, and remain true to the faith. Today I went with the unpopular option..knowing full well it could make things uncomfortable. Yet had I not stood firm for what I believe in I have no doubt I would be uncomfortable with myself. "I don't want to gain the whole world and lose my soul" (Mathew 16:26). Praise the LORD

Keep watch for we don't know the day or the hour of the LORDS return (Matthew 24:42). But when that day comes which way will you be leaning, oh fence sitters? Isn't there a song that says "You have to stand for something or you'll fall for anything? How much pride, anger, un-forgiveness, and malicious gossip is stored up in your heart ; these things are poison, How much poison is to much?
We need to fill ourselves with love, forgiveness, and encouragement others as Jesus loves you .


Satan must not like where I am going, what we are trying to do. He may be part of this world, he may have a foothold in this place...but take heart Jesus has overcome the world. (Paraphrased John 16:33)

Forgive Me.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Teaching and Class Parties

Dear Teachers (specifically early childhood teachers)

Happy Halloween,

I don't know about any of you but I was exhausted by the end of this week,..but not as exhausted as I have been in previous years...not as exhausted as some of you....

Each year I struggle with my "worth" as a teacher during the holiday season. As I image these days parents struggle with much the same issue. As I watch other teachers prepare for their classroom party and it's all so nice and "pintresty" and just better then mine. Some do it for the kids and they do a fantastic job with all those amazing pintrest games and activities. Some do it for the parents to see as well as for the kids, because parents can be a bit scary and you want them to see what a great job you are doing with their precious child. Some do it because they are natural entertainers and the thought of it doesn't give them a panic attack. Some do it because it's their first year...

Sometimes I wonder if I'm the only broken teacher out there. Am I the only teacher who thinks extravagant parties for 4 year olds is well extravagant? Am I the only teacher who dreads the holiday season because the social pressure is ridiculous? 

None of these reasons for fun days in a classroom are wrong. I remember my first year Halloween went okay the kids had fun; I was miserable the whole time but the kids had fun, That's what mattered. I had sign-up sheets, and the whole deal... it wasn't done like the previous teacher and I actually had parents complain about it because I didn't invite parents specifically and the one that came didn't like the way I did it. 

I have a standing invite in my classroom "Parents are invited and encouraged to drop by and see whats up at any time."

I struggle with my worth it was my first year and I think it's part of the reason class parties stress me out. I also work alone and have 3 different classes which means I do it all: prep, party, and clean up alone and do it 3 times in 2 days...Since my first year I have worked to de-stress my teaching job, KISS (keep it simple stupid) Kids love anything new and different no matter how simple it is like painting a pumpkin no prep needed. I've found that I have more time to interact with and instruct my students when I keep it simple.

 I've found in my 4 years as a preschool teacher, that parents have mixed feelings about parties just like I do. Some want to come to their child's first school party and it's a huge event. Others (most) like the no pressure approach because they can't get of work, or they have other things to do, or they bring their child to school so they can have some time without them. They like the idea that someone else is going to parade 10-20some kids around in costumes and play games with them. I remember class parties in elementary school and grade school but I don't remember parents there with cameras I don't remember a ton of games. I remember less structure and a ton of candy sent home. I remember being excited.

So, now I have low key parties. Usually one exciting activity (this year we painted pumpkins) and a movie because otherwise the T.V. is not on in my classroom. No sign up sheets for parents to bring things, I found that without the sheet I get a couple of parents who want to bring something and there is a lot less waste in my classroom. Some parents asked if I would need help and I told them it's pretty chill but you are more then welcome to come and chill with us! 

No. Stress. 
If I'm not stressed I can have fun and if I have fun the kids have even more fun.  

Yet I look at other rooms with tons of food that kids take one bite of and throw away, tons a things planned and they are fun things all going with the theme of  Halloween (or whatever holiday; it is) and I struggle. Maybe I'm doing it wrong, Maybe their way is better, they are better at this than me.

but that's not it, not really. It's not about me. It's about God and it's about the children. I'm not a bad teacher because I have social anxiety and  prefer to keep it lowkey. I'm not a bad teacher because I let a movie be part of my party...I'm not a bad teacher and neither are you for doing it all and being super enthusiastic and amazing. 

It's not about me.

This job is stressful enough with out new social standard,s new test standards, and your own personal standards. This job is from the heart...This job is love. You.are.Amazing.

Happy Halloween!

Friday, September 4, 2015

And if not...

The hurting is less often....but when it hurts...

I bought this. long before the knowledge that I may never have a reason to display it was even in the back of my mind. It's been in my grandpas trunk for almost 7 years now.

I've never been one to buy baby items and keep them hidden away for that precious little one I would one day have. I've been tempted but I'm thankful now that I haven't. Yet I've kept what was mine...barbies, American Girl Dolls, and my childhood prized collection of original my little ponies all collecting dust (except the barbie house my daddy made which is a staple in my preschool classroom). And this...this one willow tree statue that I broke my own rule and bought...

I found it today in my grandpas trunk tucked away next to the ashes of my kitty Pharaoh who is waiting for us to own a yard in which to bury him properly. Both things beyond me now and a life marching on. 

After putting wishes and dreams on hold yet again this summer and fighting the feelings of just giving up on these wishes and I know I am still holding on to God's Promises...and I know my hearts desires still live tucked away in a corner of my heart. They hurt me but I could not go on without them.  I know this because when I found this simple statue today my first thought was "someday" and if that's not faith than it's hope.

My heart hurts, but life goes on.

So now this statue sits in sight because its mine and I like it and one way or another it's a dream and its beautiful and I haven't given up. 

I hurt, I cry, sometimes I despair...though more often than not I'm okay...because I know as with all my prayers...

"And if not....God is still good." 

Monday, August 10, 2015

Honest with God...

A lot has happened this summer, and a lot I hoped would happen hasn't.

I'm not really sure where I stand on it all...

I'm not really sure whats next

We tried to buy a didn't work out

It didn't work out. I've been struggling with those words with more in my life then just a house.

If you know me you know I have a strong faith. Or at least I give off the appearance of strong faith. When did this world take faking a smile and not complaining as proof of faith. "Oh she seems happy to me, Oh, shes never said anything to me" If we as Christians were a whole lot more open to the brokenness that is in this world, that is in our family, friends, and God forbid even you facebook, pintrest perfect life If we had a lot less look how perfect my life is... I think we would better be able to follow in the foot steps of the amazing men and woman of faith in the bible.

Why is it when a person reaches out in pain to a friend or a mentor that you very rarely get an acknowledgement of that pain. That it does indeed hurt to be in the situation you are in and it's okay to feel that hurt. Why is it when someone who believes in God with all their heart cry's out in anger and disappointment they are told "Have faith" or "God has plans" or "All in his time" I understand it's ment to be a comfort...Not these are bad things to say but lately I've actually been really annoyed and even angry when someone says them to me. I think we(myself included) all to often uses these simply because we don't know what else to say. Sometimes I think we should say sorry and let a person know they can talk to you about it. Or be honest and say I don't know what to say to help you but I am hear for you. Sometimes you don't have to say anything I'm to the point where I would appreciate an "that sucks" more then "God has a plan."

If everyone only knew how much I walk around telling myself God's got it....yes it's a good reminder but mostly I need to know it's okay to feel the way I'm feeling that Jesus understands and hears me in my pain. I think as Christians we are almost to anti-feelings that if you are upset you simply don't have enough faith in God's ability to take care of you and when you respond in the ways I listed above you quit possible add guilt and doubt to someone already dealing with so much.. I don't know about anyone else but when you are hurting for whatever reason...when something you thought was sure is suddenly seemingly impossible... When the next step just falls to pieces in front of you and you are left there with "whats next, when something you believed to be God's will that you had prayed over and mediated on only to have the doors slam shut in your face...... hearing that it's God's plan while  might be truth it's not really helpful.

What do you do when God has disappointing you?? Believe it or not, I think that means you need to get to know God better.

Moses was honest with God in his fear, and his doubt, and his weaknesses.

David was honest with God read the Psalms and hear his pain...and yes his anger...and through it all his hope. Always hope...Psalm 13...this hero,, this man after God's own heart wrote Psalm 13...

The only reason David could end this Psalm with hope was because he was honest in the first few lines.

So maybe when someone has a deep hurt, life changing disappointment maybe instead of saying "God has his plans" maybe ask them if they have said all of this to God. Maybe agree and say it sucks...We need to find a way to point people back to God without making them feel as if they are doing something wrong.

We need to be honest with you are venting to your best friend type of honesty...and then you have to let him fill in that hole in your life with hope and trust. It's not going to solve the problem, it's not going to instantly change the crummy circumstances that is life.It's not going to instantly get you a husband, or a baby, or heal you..but it's a step to having a relationship with God unlike one you have ever had.

So if your hurting, or sick, or lonely, or watching life happen for everyone else....I just want to say that anger, that disappointment that question of why, that desire to scream and cry its not fair...

It's okay God can handle it let him have it. I've learned that keeping it in at least for me is not the solution. I hate to have people think I don't have enough faith in God. That i'm not praying and believing he will give me the desires of my heart because I simply hurt so bad in the moment. Or because I'm finding peace with the idea I may not get that desire...ever... it doesn't mean I'm not still hoping and praying and just means I'm living my life regardless of dreams that scatter and fall like rain.

A week ago I wanted to give up on dreams, and all that i hope for it just seems so.far.away. That's a lie when I started writing this post tonight I wanted to give up. I'm just done having drams and plans and goals and getting crushed. A lot of people go through big things and turn's a pivotal moment in their life and I get that...I've even considered doing the same thing recently...

but that is not who I am, I was made for so much more and though I don't know what, or why, or when, and you may not either; I know that giving up is not an option it's just not who I am and you shouldn't either.

Don't make someone feel small because they hurt, or have doubts...don't make someone feel worse because they have feelings and emotions. Adults are more like children then we care to admit and our feelings need validation, and understanding just like the 4 year old who thinks someone is looking hat him funny, Even if you can't understand why this is a big deal to someone... it's incredibly real to them. Children, Adults we are all trying to survive in a world that is broken, filled with humans that are broken. We need to be honest and not make others feel bad for their honesty...We need to lift each other up carry each others burdens and pray constantly. So the next time someone vents to you about how unfair life is about how much they hurt point them to God and say "I love listening to you and being here for you but make sure you tell God all of this to" Tell someone to get real with God...

in nice words tell them
 Land sacks tell me
Shut Up and Pray.

Better yet...pray with them right than and there because sometimes when you hurt so big to the depths of your soul...praying is nearly impossible...


Sunday, July 5, 2015

Beauty redefined.

Hey Beautiful
Yes I'm talking to you...

You the young girl, teenager, college student, adult

You whether your're single, married, old, who work all day in retail, fast food, daycare, farms, teaching, serving, cleaning, who have watched T.V. shows, commercials leafed through magazines, turned on your portable device.. driven down the road, and have been blasted with the Media infused idea of the beautiful woman. I mean seriously they even made a new Dora.....You who doesn't happen to be the 5%... and no amount of dieting, or new cloths will get you there.

You the average woman who have had children, miscarriages, stress, heart ache, without money to pour into make-up and special designer and tailored cloths, diet plans, expects, personal trainers,   or even all healthy foods. You who simply do the best you can with what this broken and imperfect world has dealt you.

You are fearfully and wonderfully made.

fearfully and wonderfully made....knitted together in your mothers womb...fearfully and wonderfully made...

Just. Remember. That.

Remember it when you look into the mirror in the dressing room at the the dress you think is just beautiful but looks better on the hanger.

Remember it when you doll yourself up to go out clubbing only to be "out shown" by the younger, thinner, taller, curvier...More "American Sweetheart"

Remember also...

You are  not alone in your struggle. 91% of female are there with you...though I wouldn't be surprised if it were more like 100%

  1. Approximately 91% of women are unhappy with their bodies and resort to dieting to achieve their ideal body shape. Unfortunately, only 5% of women naturally possess the body type often portrayed by Americans in the media.

(Apologies power went out and I lost the source...)


  1. pleasing the senses or mind aesthetically.
    "beautiful poetry"

Everyone wants to feel beautiful...everyone wants to be told they are beautiful...everyone wants to be treated accordingly. I'm fortunate to have a husband who reminds me often that he finds me beautiful though I am ashamed to admit that I often don't believe him and I let the lies and ideas of a woman's beauty" in this world control my words and thoughts about my appearance.  

It's not just adults who struggle with this obsession of being beautiful. It's in the conversation with a 12 year old telling her friends she absolutely has to wear make-up because with out it it's bad. It's in the conversation between a 9 year old boy and an 8 year old girl and he tells her It's okay shes not attractive anyway. The 8 year old response to my scolding the boy "It's okay Mrs. Leah, I'm use to it."  What damage have we done to our youth with our thoughtless negative comments about our bodies? What damage do you do to yourself with these negative comments. what damage has T.V. games, Movies, Internet done to us?

Advertising is Brain Damage....

I am blessed with beautiful friends, and beautiful things, we are blessed with beautiful places, art, nature, poetry, music... but the greatest, beauty of all is actually the Passion...the horrible,, bloody, Crucifixion and the amazing resurrection because it's not the outside that was what happened inside. Its what happens that people can't see where he washed us clean, where he went to Hell so we would not have to.  

I wish this world could re-define beauty. Beauty to me is the kindness I've seen in the world in my friends, in strangers. Beauty is in the laughter of a child, Beauty is in the tears of a friend who is crying simply because you hurt and words cant help. Beauty is the person who takes the time to ask are you okay? Beauty yes it's in the eye of the beholder but I think it's so much more. I think if children and adults are to overcome the media infused(Satan driven) idea of beauty they need to be a whole lot more willing to build others up, even strangers and a lot less willing to mock or tear them down.

When Satan uses the world to bring you down and hold you in bondage we need to go back to the bible and be reminded we are fearfully and wonderfully made. Beauty does not come from outward adornment but from within...A man might call you beautiful out of passion but it's more of a complement when you are called  beautiful out of love. As parents should, As friends can, As the right man does or someday will, and mostly as God does.

Beauty redefined in random senseless acts of kindness, compassion, and love. 

You. Are. Beautiful. 

Shine On.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Social Anxiety..

Nobody truly understands just what I accomplished or rather what God accomplished last night at my preschoolers graduation party...

No one with out social anxiety that is.

Social anxiety is the fear of social situations that involve interaction with other people. You could say social anxiety is the fear and anxiety of being negatively judged and evaluated by other people.  It is a pervasive disorder and causes anxiety and fear in most all areas of a person's life.  It is chronic because it does not go away on its own.  Only direct cognitive-behavioral therapy can change the brain, and help people overcome social anxiety.

Triggering Symptoms

People with social anxiety usually experience significant distress in the following situations:
  • Being introduced to other people
  • Being teased or criticized
  • Being the center of attention
  • Being watched or observed while doing something
  • Having to say something in a formal, public situation
  • Meeting people in authority ("important people/authority figures")
  • Feeling insecure and out of place in social situations ("I don’t know what to say.")
  • Embarrassing easily (e.g., blushing, shaking)
  • Meeting other peoples’ eyes
  • Swallowing, writing, talking, making phone calls if in public
This list is not a complete list of symptoms -- other symptoms may be associated with social anxiety as well.

 Here is my list the things that make me shake, and short of breath and anxious, have panic attacks, cry, flush, feel sick...or be annoying to my friends and family...granted some of these make most people uncomfortable but does it render them useless or just make them uneasy??

* People waiting in line behind me, at a bank if it's not a quick in and out, at a grocery store , (I'm the one that if the isle is blocked I turn around and go around or somewhere else rather then say excuse me.) at an event if people are waiting to eat that I know need to get going(like at graduation last night.) Being in the restroom and knowing someone is waiting to use the it....Normal everyday activities, and situations that you can not avoid...if someone is standing behind me waiting I would rather say "don't worry about it I'll do it later and leave" than finish up and make people wait who might be in a hurry or getting annoyed with me. Even if i have a right to do what I'm doing and it's really not talking that long at all...

*Sending food back at a restaurant..I just don't do it, I just can't.

*Ordering over the phone

*Crowds in general

*If I know anyone is upset with me or don't like me for ANY reason. (makes my job rough sometimes when it comes to parents and teacher relationships...)

*When I mess something up (like CD's with pictures for my parents...)

*Public restrooms

*Standing up at a conference/church/staff meeting/movie... to go to the restroom in a room full of people sitting (hence I'm real good at holding it). Even when you are told at the start of the conference that you can go at anytime...(I've put garbage in my purse rather than stand up and find a trash can before).

*Asking for help at a store finding something

*Asking for the price of something at a yard sale (haggling for me is out of the question).

*Going to an event and not knowing where exactly I'm going/parking/what door to use....

*Small talk

*Addressing a crowed (Drama was okay I had lines) Being in front of people doesn't seem to bother me as much as being the only one talking to a group of people.

*Parties where I don't know everyone really really well.

*Parties I'm in charge of much larger then 6 people even if I do know them well.

*Phone someone I don't know really really well or at all. Nor can I talk on the phone if anyone is in the room with me. the fear of dialing the wrong number...Voice mail...nope.

*Working on projects in a small group where if i mess up i mess up everyone's grade/job/whatever/ committees its not that I don't want to do be on them or help....its just that I can't.

*Getting somewhere too early, or too late.

*Hosting anything more than a couple friends over to hang out...ever.

*Ice Breaking activities with strangers, small or large group.

*Being called on or singled out in class/ staff meeting.

*Resort vacations (lots of people) hence most of our vacations are camping/hiking.

* A host of other things I haven't connected yet that I do almost everyday.

As for my symptoms that's easy I just never knew so many of them were connected to such different situations...

panic/ panic attacks
short breath/dizzy
red face/ skin
obsessing (for example I found out people don't like the way I dance and I can't seem to get over it and honestly dancing has not been as much fun in months because of it) its irrational and I know that but it's where I'm at.
An over whelming desire to hide...or leave...or not go. (these often win if I have a choice)
(I would not be surprised if my insomnia has something to do with this as well)

Sometimes at the end of a party like last weekend (actually last weekend went pretty okay...) or an event like last night's I'm so physically and emotionally drained from trying to hold myself together I'm basically broken.  God always get's me through...I don't know what I would have done last night without him...

I normally end up feeling like a bad friend because I say no to parties wither it be baby showers/31/Mary Kay or just a party...

I normally end up saying no when invited out to bars, or events...

I normally end up saying no..or I say yes when I'm invited on a good day but by the time the actually day comes around it's a bad one and I back out.

I normally ALWAYS feel like a bad friend to everyone.

Believe me I've been trying...I've gotten better at dealing with the feelings (they are not gone or at all better, I'm just better at dealing with them) Hence the party last weekend wasn't bad and that is an encouraging thought,  and in other cases like dancing it's gotten worse.

I think it's this that holds me back with my co-workers as well...I'm so socially's painful both physically and mentally.

At cowboy up I'm good if it's not Sat but it took me darn near 5 years to even TRY to really get to know the regulars out there...6+ years... I missed out on 6+ years of some pretty wonderful people because well...because I'm me.

I found a thing on facebook that really got me paying attention to my triggers and why I react the way I do. I really liked it though the pictures were a little much. Yet these things are what I wish i could get my friends to least some of these things. It's not that i don't like you or want to spend time with you...its not even your fault it's painful.

I'm usually the one who sees anything buzzfeed and goes this is going to be awful/judgmental/or offensive. this one was okay. I click on any buzzfeed article with a critical eye and more often then not learn more from the comments then the article...

I always knew I had social problems that I was at least awkward...but as time goes on I would not be surprised if I were diagnosed with moderate social anxiety disorder. In my research they say it can be diagnosed normally in adolescence but major symptoms show themselves in the early 20's right around the age I had my first panic attack. That it will more then likely progress and get worse...I also read that exposing yourself to the situations that make you anxious really doesn't help...

I'm not a big doctor person but if we ever get life figured out I may try behavioral therapy...until then I'll continue to learn my triggers prepare myself for the situation and trust in God to get me through when I fall apart just like he did last night when I almost started crying. I'm just really tired of feeling like a bad friend, an outsider at my job, and uncomfortable line dancing which is one of my favorite things.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Let's all hurt together.

I told myself I wasn't going to do this this year, write that blog. There are so many better blogs out there on this subject. So vastly better then the words stuck in my heart and the back of my eyes. But here I am, time is marching on to another Mothers Day weekend that dreaded second Sunday if May, and I'm writing that blog.

 It's a hard day, it's a hurting day, it's defiantly a struggle. No flowers, cards, or breakfast in bed for us. When you are even more painfully aware that desires of your heart have yet to be granted.  But we have to remember that it's not our fault, it's most certainly not the fault of the amazing mommies being honored. We have to remember it's no ones fault when you go to church, or out to eat and instead of standing up as a mother you remain seated with your head bowed blinking back tears. Instead of being handed a flower you force a smile and walk past...

You have to remember that it's okay...they deserve this...and it's not that you don't.

Because we do... We fight everyday with the lose of what is considered a right of passage for woman. Even if we still have hope and un-shaking faith that it will still change..we fight to keep even that hope. It's real and it's crippling...and on Mothers Day it's all but impossible.

So to the lovely lady in the back of the church, or sitting at a table with your family and their kids, or buying a gift for your own mommy, or even that single lady still waiting for Mr. Right. For all you teachers like myself, helping a classroom full of kids make a mothers day gift, knowing you don't have a child in a classroom making one for you... those with hurts and loses and empty wombs and shattered dreams. THIS IS FOR YOU....

WE are special,

God knows we're strong,  and we deserve to be honored. Hold your head up, remember; they deserve it and so do you. Remember this mothers day we have hope in a future no matter WHAT that future holds. The promises and blessings of Mothers Day are ours as well. Reach beyond yourself and encourage a mother, for they have their own set of hurts. Please, encourage yourself to acknowledge your emotions, the hurt, and please don't feel guilty for them because you are not alone in your pain. We are strong so often that now and then we are allowed to be weak.

Further more, all you lovely, blessed, mothers out there who do so much everyday with out any recognition often all alone. Enjoy your day, God knows you deserve it. Remember those of us who can only watch from the outside...On a day we often feel the most alone and forlorn...encourage us as you are being encouraged.

Because "in the shelter of each other we will live." lets build each other up, lets hurt in our own ways, and carry each others crosses. We are how we treat each other nothing more.


Monday, May 4, 2015

I'm done being ineffective....

" Life as a Christian is one of constant repentance." ~Martin Luther~

A hard prayer to pray...

"Father, show me what I need to change to better reflect you"

This short, simple prayer can be one of the most powerful and painful prayers you pray.
Even if you think  you're doing great...

Things you need to know when you pray this prayer

1. He will show you your weakness, over and over again until you get it. through conversations, meditation, sermons, songs, other peoples trials, or even in the way other people treat you. If you don't get it fast...if you're not open to will show in your daily life. In your peace or lack there of.

2. He will give you the strength to start to change it.

3. The change will not be complete over night, or in a week, or month, and so far in my case not even a year. I'm willing to bet not in a life time but you will notice changes as long as you consciously try.

4. Peace with yourself will come the instant you "get it" and start praying to change it

5. The same flaws have a way of showing themselves in different forms.

6 It hurts, it hurts your pride, it hurts your self esteem...but that hurt will make us better instruments for the Lords work, when we come to realize we are not any better than ANYONE else. A vine will not grow good fruit in perfect soil under perfect conditions. It must be pruned/stressed to bare fruit.

7. Don't pray this prayer if you don't want to change.

The first year I prayed this at the start of the year...I spent the rest of the year and am still learning just how selfish I am. Loud and clear in the still small voice in my head, in the moment after you said or did something selfish that caused me to pause. Selfishness.

The next year I prayed this and spent the rest of the year trying to be aware of my complaining. Which I soon discovered was rooted in selfishness, and so in other words I was still focusing on being selfless.

This year had taken me much longer than past years to get the answer. I'm sure I had it fast and just didn't listen to it or didn't want to, or because I haven't been as plugged into Jesus as before maybe my heart couldn't hear it. Boy do I have it loud and clear now. Guess what...that funk I've been in for near a month, is gone.

The verdict...Judging and guess what, it's rooted in selfishness.
Like I said, it's not a quick fix its a life long battle.

Now, if you are a regular reader you were probably like DUH most of my blogs this year have been about Judging. now I know to be aware of what I write about, it's usually pointing back at me.

So, whats next.
1. Find the cause, the triggers...In this case the negativity that surrounds me. Due to circumstances this fight could be much harder then if I lived in my own home. Is a large part of the reason I want my own place so bad.

2. Plug in. Spend time in prayer, and reflecting on God's word pray for the open mind and heart to understand what he wants you to do next. The  more I pray and reflect the more I get an idea of how to deal with it.

3. Do as he suggests (in my case nudges a little thought or idea) my first steps..Apologies, honestly this part terrifies me, because I have seriously done so much damage hiding behind self-righteousness. Boy does it hurt to admit that. However, often in life apologizing for being in the wrong is the only way to find peace. Even if the person doesn't forgive you. This time its mainly one person...I'm sure there are others but to start with I know it my heart its one specific person.

No one likes to feel judged and looked at. I'm sorry if I have ever made anyone feel such before. I struggle line dancing now, when certain people are there because I feel that they are Judging me. Knowing they don't approve of how I dance makes me uncomfortable and a little angry.
Is that how I make someone else feel? I sure want to stop if I do, but sometimes you get to a point where you're not sure how to fix it. You didn't even realize you were making them feel like that to start with, and they haven't said so at least not to you.

This is where trust comes in.

However, I know perfectly well I'm not to skirt away from the morals of my beliefs to make myself or anyone else comfortable. I have to stand by my beliefs I have to try to show them a better way, with out using those beliefs as a justification for bad actions and thoughts (as I have had in my heart.)  For judging someone else's life choices even when they go against belief isn't the right way to show them the way the truth and the life... because obviously NO one is perfect and obviously that is not love. We all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. 

I have no clue the inner working's of her heart, but I have a guild in God's word and a guess because, from the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks. Our actions, our attitude our willingness to do the right thing selflessly, humbly, out of love reflects a heart anchored in the word. A reminder for everyone.

and just because you can't see it, or its not there at the moment doesn't it will always be that way.

 This does not make them a bad person, nor does this mean they would not be able to do the job elsewhere. This doesn't even mean we can't be friends or that they have no hope for their faith walk..It simply means they do not need to be in a position heading, or partially heading the churches main mission outreach based on where they are right now in their life. period. It's not personal it's a church thing.

Anywhere outside of my church I have no leg to stand on I understand that, I'm glad she works for my church if your're lost, or not sure, or don't know what to do it's a great place to start.

Nor do I have to show pity for someone dealing with the consequences of their poor choices, I also do not think they would want me to do that. It helps no one.  Show them Jesus yes, Love yes, encouragement yes, help yes, friendship yes...but pity no. Life is hard, and we all make choices and then have to live with them. Welcome to being an adult in a sinful and imperfect world. I know it sucks.

"This little light of the shelter of each other, we will live" I haven't been a very good shelter.

No more "why them and not me"...

No more silent condemnation, instead of showing Jesus love.

No more will these feelings and thoughts have any foot hold in me.

" I'm bankrupt without love"

I'm done being ineffective.

My Father the Gardner is pruning me so I can be productive in Christ.

Some bible verses that have been part of sermons the last few weeks that have played a part in bringing me to attention.

~Romans 11:18~
~John 15:1-8~

I'm broken....but I can mend.

You're prayers would be appreciated.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Hope for the Flowers....(a blog in stream of consciousness)

There's a monster inside me, inside all of us...

That, covets, worries, stresses, judges, rants,  raves, complains, and yells "ITS NOT FAIR"

God and it's so so right..

some-days this monster hangs out right in plain sight;
                                                                 in tears, and yelling, and anger and bitter words...
Most often you can only see the monster in someone's eyes, mannerisms, or empty stare..
Sometimes it sneaks around manipulating people, taking advantage and sucking them dry.

other times you can't see it at all,

this does not mean it's not there, it's just sleeping lurking..
                 or pouting because he's being ignored.
and plotting..

.always plotting

calling on its advocates Satan and his demons laying in wait like a roaring lion waiting to devour you and me...

And this monster in any form, oh this monster can destroy lives, and bring down empires...

and demolish hope.....

Hope for the flowers, and the caterpillars, and the people...Hope in the general goodness of mankind...

Lately this monster has been riding me hard... real hard...fighting back...kicking me when I'm down...mocking me... trying to sever the last thread tying me to anything stable and good,


with what I don't have, what I want, what I can't have... never letting me focus for more then a moment on what I do have and what effect I can have on the world where I'm at. from the over flow of the heart....your mouth speaks.

smell your flower....blow out your candle...breathe...

no amount of crying, no amount of whining, can make me whole with demons in the back of my mind.

.now that's a different weapon...when that weapon is a habit...
it. will. be. deadly.

This is not my home..where monsters roam, and leap and roar...

I feel so far away....

hanging on by a thread...but it's enough...

because if there is hope for the flowers...then there is hope for me and you and them.

my thread is connected by a prayer...

and though I don't see it, I can't feel it and often I have a hard time believing it... the shelter of each other is there.  The promise of a lifetime remains..

I'm not sure
       what this was,
                 or is,
                    or will be...

but there it is.
I've got broken wings....


                                                      Love Wins.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

The Power of Music.

Let me preference this blog with this statement I'm a WELS Lutheran, and I like it that way, this not an attack on my synod or even my church and certainly not my pastor...this is simply the way I see music and how I think it could be used better.

Today is Palm Sunday, while in church today my Pastor said something that made me smile.
"Because of Jesus, even little children singing praises, have more power than Satan." Just think about that...this big scary devil running around ruining lives, confusing peoples hearts and minds, has less power then my 4 year olds singing Jesus Loves Me or Hip Hip Hip Hippopotamus...

It's a celebration a way to share the joy and hope of Jesus, It can ignite a fire inside people..

All the people in this world that practice magic and draw power from channels other then Jesus, have less power than than my 3 year olds belting out Jesus Loves the Little Children. I mean just WOW..


Singing is so much more then just worship, it's a way to say thank-you

Therefore I will give thanks to You, O Lord, among the Gentiles, And sing praises to Your name. ~2 Samuel 22:50~

It's a celebration a way to share the joy and hope of Jesus, It can ignite a fire inside people..

Sing to the Lord, all the earth; Proclaim the good news of His salvation from day to day. ~ 1 Chronicles 16:23~

Sing to the Lord, bless His name; Proclaim the good news of His salvation from day to day. Psalm 96:2

Paul and Silas sang in prison, In prison they sang praises...just think about what the jailers or the other prisoners are thinking then...What hope what a testimony, what a way to LIVE your faith.

The Philippian Jailer Saved ] But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. ~Acts 16:25~

There is so much power in singing, you are suppose to sing to children to help them grow, and preschoolers to help them learn, and the sick to bring comfort, it can bring rest for your soul, renewal to your faith, and joy...

Music the universal language...that fact alone has got to make you think about the power.

The Bible contains over 400 references to singing and 50 direct commands to sing.  Bob Kauflin)We're commanded twice in the New Testament to sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs (Ephesians 5:19Colossians 3:16). 

Sometimes I think conservative churches get it wrong. When sometimes for the sake of being biblical we cheat the music, and more modern churches for the sake of being trendy lose a little of the teaching in the repetitious praise. Both of these examples have their strengths and I'm not saying they are bad, repetition if a great way to learn, a great way to reinforce, a great way to draw people in so you can teach them the more complicated messages you often find in old well written hymns.

It's very rare I find a church that can take the two extremes and find the middle ground. To often at my Church I feel like I'm at a funeral, it's beautiful words and poetry, and such a great message but you lose the urge to PRAISE the Lord with song. There is no feeling no passion in the melody while the words are so full of meaning. (Not all of them but the ones that do both are so rarely sang at my church).. I also know you are praising God when you sing but the joy that comes with uplifting music is sometimes/ most of the time missing.  

There is a place for the beauty of different melodies... Harps, and beautiful songs are often mentioned in the Psalms, I'm not saying you have to rock the house to have passion... but a majority of the verses encourage joyful song.

Shout joyfully to the Lord, all the earth; Break forth in song, rejoice, and sing praises. ~Psalm 98:4

Makes me think that praising God should be a party, "Break forth in song" a musical...maybe the Pentecostal throwing themselves on the ground filed with the spirit, the southern gospel swaying and clapping are on to something.  They have so much feeling in their songs, so many old tried and true hymns that don't seem to be touched anymore in Lutheran churches, sometimes I think we try too hard to find hymns that fit the message of the day we lose the novelty of what singing really is...

In a recent service we were re-taught that you don't go to church to be entertained, your not there to learn something new, your there to get the word of God. Your not there to hang out with friends (though there is something to be said for fellowship with people at the same walk in life as you, a fact I'm more aware of now after St. Marcus). Though it's all true, there is an element of necessity in these things. You need to draw people in and since music is the most powerful way and part of worship why not use it the tools God gives to work with the message? 

I left church feeling guilty that day that my feelings about the power of music, or the longing I have to fellowship with people my age is wrong... that it should be enough to simply get the word of God and I was selfish for wanting more from church. It makes me think about the people who don't go to church because they can get the same thing at home, or in nature....I can just as easily open the bible sit by a lake and get the word of God.  So while I see where this message is coming from, I don't think I agree.

Heres a WELS article on the subject..
Here's the part of the article that says what i'm trying to say a lot better.

Grab a Bible, open it right around the middle, and read Psalm 95.

God's people come to church to worship him. We come because God is "the Lord our Maker," who holds "the depths of the earth" in his hands. We come because of who we are: "he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, the flock under his care."
We come because, frankly, we can't help ourselves. What God has done for us in Christ makes us want to "shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation" and "extol him with music and song." We come to church because most of us would feel pretty silly doing these things at home alone in our living rooms. But singing God's praises with other grateful Christians at church is the most natural thing in the world, and we wouldn't miss a chance to do it.

"But singing God's praises with other grateful Christians at chruch is the most natural thing in the world." 

The first reason he gives it to worship him...with's natural.

Granted we do sing songs, and yes now and again we sing that tried and true hymn that everyone knows and loves and everyone sings. But if you a play a song simply because the words reinforce the sermon... in my opinion that takes away from the point of "bursting into song" because you are so full of joy...

The power of music.

I'm not saying you need a live band, and rock music to get people excited. Amazing Grace on a piano excites me just as much as the band SKILLET excites me in my car or at their concert... Or Konie at St. Marcus...

I'm not saying we can't ever try new hymns, how do you know if your congregation likes them or not if you don't try them.  But maybe just one and the others the tried and true and loved hymns...because that is one thing I'm almost sure people won't mind repeating... Why does it have to fit the message perfectly? when the point is to Worship God?

Also, another fault I find in some churches, Is the lack of standing to sing...The honor the respect you show by changes the feeling in the music as well. Sometimes it's all I can do not to stand on the last verse of Amazing Grace or any other powerful hymn...that's OVERFLOWING with joy.. Or maybe I'm just weird.  Yet Lutherans stand up and sit down constantly....why not for song? Singing and dancing and praising God....

I love music, I listen to hymns all the time, and we will sing his praises forever in heaven..I mean if that's our soul purpose in heaven to sing his praises why wouldn't it be one of the main reasons we go to church here on earth?

So sing, even if your voice isn't great, even if your old, because like on that day long ago when the religious leaders tried to shush the crowed and the children...if we don't the rocks way or another God will get his praise.  It can calm your fears...

Singing gives you power over Satan...even the children...

What power...what joy...what a blessing!!


Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Missing Jesus.

Lately I've been missing my Good Shepherds Family. I miss having co-workers that would not only encourage me in the day to day, but also in my walk with Jesus. Yes they all had their own set of problems because who doesn't. But we shared our crosses and we cried together and laughed together and we all went through some really really hard stuff together... and I knew that if I was dealing with something I could talk and I would almost always be pointed back to Jesus. I honestly miss nap time/ break time adult conversation to break up the day.

Sometimes I think I just feel left out, I do my own thing to the best of my ability and then I go home. No one really knows what I do and don't do, but the kids are learning and the parents are happy and God knows...that should be enough... Sometimes when it comes to gossip and complaining being left out is okay...but it also leaves me out of the loop on specific things,like who needs prayer and for what, little things I could do when someone is having a bad day. It's like I've lost my ability to reach out and try to make someone smile. I struggle to find moments to do any random acts of kindness... I've almost lost my energy. I'm goofy with my preschoolers and they love it, but I miss that co-worker to laugh with share that great moment with the kid with. I miss being able to go to another room and just be silly...I miss being comfortable enough around my co-workers to joke around. I miss people who got my sense of humor... Maybe I'm just burnt out...

I think it's because I'm not quit a daycare worker, I'm not one of them... I don't think I want to necessarily go back to being a "daycare worker Not because it's bad but just because it's just not what I want to do anymore...

I miss a lot of things, and a lot of things I don't miss...

Sometimes it would be easy to forget I work at St. Johns LUTHERAN Childcare center...and i think it's that common thread of faith I shared with my co-workers at Good Shepherds Lutheran that I miss the most. It was the common thread that made me part of that family within months...

I miss my Good Shepherds Family.

I miss community group...

I miss church...

I miss Jesus.

I need to get back to my faith walk, I need to get back to intentional thinking. Intentionally choosing NOT to complain about the problem child or not to complain at all. Intentionally choosing to use words that build up not only my soul but my co-workers in what little interaction I might have with them. I need to be reminded that I don't do this job for me, so that I might get complimented, so that the new boss will have a good opinion of me... or noticed for how good of a job I'm doing. I do this for the Lord and for the children...I'm here to serve, reflect Jesus, and teach.

I need to get back to my DAILY walk with God...and that right there will fix everything else...

because today I noticed my words were negative which means my heart is as well. That's not me, this is not who I am. I'm blessed with a job I love, a husband, a house, and so many other things...
"From the overflow of the heart, the mouth will speak"

I need your prayers readers and friends, and your encouragement, and the accountability...


Friday, February 6, 2015

Judging the Broken in us all.

Another facebook inspired post.

Facebook and the News.

Today an article appeared on my news-feed, via multiple friends... When I was scrolling through and saw the picture I said hmm she looks familiar but kept going. Later I came back to it and another friend had shared it...I looked closer. The brokenness of the world was in those eyes. The eyes of a lady who tried to speed away from a police officer and ended up sliding of the road into an embankment. She apparently had her 2 year old child with her and a warren out for her arrest as well as no insurance and an unregistered vehicle. The eyes of a life where all she ever saw was broken...Who is now in jail facing 4th degree child abuse charges...

She has 3 children...all boys..

it's not fair...but...there is a reason whatever it might be I deal with my own demons.

The eyes of a childhood friend...just as lost as she was in 2nd grade when we played cats and dogs and C.J. was the catcher.... or when we would pick apples from the trees in her back yard and get sick from eating to many, play in the corn crib down the road, build snow men, and have sleep overs where I would watch movies my mom wouldn't like me watching. Someone I meet in Kindergarten who I spent years growing with...Someone who watched what sin can do to adults. Who watched a mother deal with pain (MS..if she was being truthful) the best way she new how(drugs)...who watched her mom and dads marriage dissolve.  Who really saw nothing in relationships to hold her together. Who lied...sometimes to survive or get attention she was starved for... or at least to convince others she was just fine. She lied so much I will admit she pushed me away even as a child she could tell fantastic stories and swear they were the truth..and she could  make you believe them. I watched them trun from stories to falsehoods, to lies, to manipulate, strike back, and destroy .....and it's a mental illness...but she falls through the cracks in the system...and shes broken I'm not making excuses but I saw this article and cried..other see it and roll there eyes...mock her, She shouldn't do it but does she know anything else??

A life of choices stretched out behind her, passed on to her from her parents and now to her own children...None of it her fault and at the same time every single choice she has made, lie she has told, hers and hers alone. Her mother didn't hold a gun to her head and say do what I did.... but she showed her the way...

Show your children something more... to rise above.

Because if you didn't know her before 4th don't know her at all. Between the lies and the walls and the life she grew up in...she has survived...somehow allbeit not well. But look at her eyes....

Just an article about a woman who ran from a cop.... posted and shared again and again...for people to read that really don 't need to read it, sure it's in the papers it public domain..but does that mean that old friends, acquaintances need to share it like that?  It use to be if you didn' live in the area you didn't really hear about it...local news stayed people that live in Flordia who had forgotten that this woman existed knows, complete strangers all over the nation...and have formed an opinion based on one small write up...

Isn't it at that point the same as gossip? Is it going to help this woman? Is judging her, calling her stupid going to fix her? Is stating that she won't change because she never has yet really the answer? How many times has she heard stuff like that in her life? Look at her eyes and don't tell me shes not hurting... I'm not saying she can be saved..but has anyone tried. (Maybe they have...idk)

what if she finds this article with these comments (some from people she knew) is it going to motivate her to make her life better..or drive her deeper into the pain she can't seem to get away from? I'm not making excuses for her and honestly if this results with her losing her children thats good. This cycle needs to be broken. I can't wait to be in a position to do foster care and help children placed in situations like this... but

 but things like this isn't going to do it.

"Sounds like a real winner.  Unfortunately this is the kind of person that breeds in this country."

When I see people like that I magically run out of money. Funny how that works. Smh. I can't stand low life lazy people. I bust my ass for everything I have and they seem to always be there with a hand open for a donation.

"Drugs do that to people"

I think a lot of people with mental problems, drug and alcohol abuse problems, tend to stay that way because 1. It's all the know. 2. That's what everyone therefor it must be true.  It's no different then telling a child they are worthless... over and over again...

My heart hurts...this is "Red" (I use to be so jealous of her red hair..but oh how she hated it) This is my friend, even if we haven't spoken in years...

Maybe I feel to much....idk...

She is a human...she does have feelings...I know I've seen them...

She tried to reach out to me a year or so ago when she ran into my mom and gave her her phone number to give to me. I truly wanted to call her...then lost the number...

What if I had...

In highschool she was never ready to hear about Jesus...She was into some pretty dark stuff (also a coping mechanism) but from what my mom said the day she gave her her phone number and from the look in her eyes in this picture. What if I had called her? I know I can't save her but when is the last time she's heard the message? 4th or 5th grade when she left St. Johns? When her life fell apart around her? I never even bothered to water or re-plant that seed to share the hope of a future, and to make it worse God put it on my heart real heavy that day and I still didn't call her.

I can't sleep now.... the hopelessness of those eyes... and the back of my mind...

Tomorrow could be one day to late.

Judge away world, beat her down and make sure she stays there... feel better about yourself...share her misery with the world and let complete strangers judge as well.

I'm a hypocrite though, how many times have I watched someone on the news do something stupid and call them that? Some people really are just bad people...and some people take in a broken world and have nothing left. Seeing a face I now in a article like this, I will now think more before I pass judgment on someone or share the news.... Because sharing is not in and of itself a bad thing, and nothing is going to stop mean comments on something like this. I'm just going to try to check my  motives of why I'm sharing something and see if they are good. Does EVERYONE on your friends list need to know this? Because until today I've never really thought of it.

“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? ...Matthew 7:1,2~

The draw back of small town life, the drawback of the media infused world..

they are both blessings and curses..

and my heart hurts....look at her eyes. (taken from the article photo and cropped by me)

When I find it I'll add the picture of us when we were about 6 or 7 building a snowman...


Here is an article that explains her mental health issues...I think her mother had the same problem.
(I wouldn't be suprised if most or even all of the "Causes" in this definition are true for her.)

it's a sickness...

It's not an's a reason. It doesn't make it right or fair..but when sin entered this world nither of those things are always a part of life.