Friday, February 22, 2013

My Ideal v. My Reality: A Dare to Love and be Loved

In the past, I built a wall that dared one to cross. History filled with wounds and scars as well as painful injuries that I tried to ignore. My body language warned everyone to keep their distance. Too many fractured relationships left my heart calloused and nearly impenetrable. I was on guard, protecting my soul for the inevitable rejection to come. A tomb of relationships early on in life left me pushing away anyone who dared to express love. Hurt people hurt people, I’ve been told. It was true in my life.

Flashbacks of many goodbyes I have had to say come to mind. Some are less painful than others. All of them shape me. When friends move away… someone cuts you out of their life unexpectedly… or even if death determines the finality of a relationship… it hurts. And in each of those moments, where pain blinds my security, I find myself hesitant to reach out and make any more friends.
My initial reaction with disappointment from people is to protect my heart (and the hearts of my family). I think twice before I give away information about my life. Reluctant to make investments that won’t yield a good return, I hold back. Initially, I want to weigh the risks because no one can promise me the future with friendship.

My ideals simply didn’t match up with my reality. Pining over friendship vows sworn by Anne Shirley and Diana Barry in the beauty of Green Gables, left me unfulfilled. Deep down I knew it was unrealistic to think all childhood friendships could stand the test of time. Still, the movie, Beaches, left me longing for bonds that would stand secure at our death beds. My mind understood that even Rachel, Monica and Phoebe had written scripts that helped them work out their differences as Friends. So, how could I put aside the friendship fantasy and embrace reality instead?

I have learned that one has to be willing to risk pain if they yearn to experience joy. True friendship cannot be found in catering to our wounds and refusing to get back up again. In opening our hearts and sharing our experiences, we find that we are not alone. It is only when we are found trustworthy that we experience that same dependability in our friend. When we put our hearts out there to love others, we find the devotion we long for in return. Camaraderie is understood only by those who are willing to take the risk.
I allow my heart to love more than caution tells me is sensible. And another broken friendship leaves me second guessing my worth in this world. Why should I even care? Often, I find myself just wanting to throw in the towel. What is the point of all the pain when the part of my heart I allowed to love big shatters into pieces again? Is there really any point to all of this loving when it ends in a forced letting go?

“When someone fails you, don’t be stunned. It just confirms what the Bible teaches – that we’re all sinners, that there’s none that is righteous, no not one. While it is important to love and cherish our friends, our dependence should be on God alone – for only He is without sin and only He will never let us down.” – Dee Brestin, The Friendship of Women

These days, I appear an open book, putting my everything out there as a statement of “take me or leave me”. As if it doesn’t matter. It’s a dare to love and be loved.

If I were truly to unveil my soul to you, there would be a window I peak through offering but guarding. I extend myself carefully. This is my calling. I am nothing if I will not risk it all for love. Love for my God. Love for others. Trusting is not natural or even easy. Yet I know to dare is the only way to live. There were arms opened wide on the cross reminding me of a cost so great it forbids me from coddling my own wounded heart. I cannot deny His calling on my life. He gave up everything. When I desire to cling to my life, I look at the way He sacrificed His and I lay mine down. In His love I find security and I wish to give others a glimpse of that, too.

My needs and desires will be filled by my God. My fears and scars are for Him to bandage. My life is to fulfill His mission: Love God with my whole heart, soul, mind and strength and to Love others as myself.

“Do not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time, we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” - Galatians 6:9

 I'm linking up with my friend Darcy Wiley at her blog, Message in a Mason Jar for her Take Heart series. This week we are talking about kinship and community. Be sure to check out the encouragement over there!


Take Heart Series ~ Feb 2013

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Mismatched Perspective

(Today is the Third Thursday of the month. Time for the Hearts at Home Home Blog Hop! This month's topic: No More Perfect Marriages. For more stories to reassure you that no marriage is perfect, head over to Jill's blog.)

Mismatched is the hip fashion trend these days. (I’m certain the use of the word “hip” here shows how very out of touch I am with any current trends, though!) My girls separate socks I have perfectly paired together in an effort to express their personalities. Even shoes can be mismatched and look stylish if you know what you’re doing (at least my 4-year-old is able to pull it off)!

As I put the blue lid on the pink cup and insert a green straw, I can’t help but think of the ensembles my little girls are able to perfect. Attempting to disguise my lack of effort to hunt for a matching lid, I deliver juice to my daughter with a declaration that her cup is “mismatched”. Brown eyes light up with a smile that expresses her awe. I have to admit that I gave myself a good pat on the back.

Isn’t this something you’ve condemned your husband for doing?

Conviction has a way of creeping up on me. This helpful man I married receives a lashing of ungratefulness because my judgment of mismatched cups from his hands equates laziness as opposed to embracing a fad. He tries to tell me that there’s more than one way to get from point A to point B. And deep down, I know my way isn’t the only way but… good luck convincing me that it’s not the best way.

This is our marriage: A world of different perspectives, varying opinions, and alternative ways. Frustration is built from too many expectations. “Expectations kill relationships,” I read in Ann Voskamp's book, One Thousand Gifts. I must admit that they have endangered my marriage.

With marriages failing all around me, I’ve pulled out my magnifying glass to examine my own. Under honest scrutiny, I can see myself as the root of the problem. Just the other day, instead of counting gifts, I found myself adding up frustrations.

I’ve told him before that bread doesn’t go in the fridge! I yank the container out. Placing it on the counter, I find myself reflective. My new Lenten practice challenges me to count the gift of a husband who puts away leftovers, allowing me to exercise with friends. This challenges my skewed perspective.

Of course he forgot to relay our daughter’s request the night she asked him to so I could be certain to have her shirt ready! An altered perspective would be realizing it is much easier to point fingers in blame at his mistakes rather than the piles of dirty laundry I’ve been neglecting. Not to mention the fact that he handled bedtime once again as I headed out the door.

The list threatens to grow in length very quickly. Danger is ahead and I am keenly aware. In keeping the frustrations to myself, I give off the appearance of keeping the peace. After all, love covers a multitude of wrongs, right? One of many problems with this is that I wasn’t forgiving and forgetting. I was keeping score for an upcoming war!

My unsuspecting husband’s actions added another offense to my tally in the middle of my thoughts. “I am growing very frustrated with you.” I informed him in a calm tone surprising both of us. “It’s just a bunch of little things but I can feel them building up and I might just explode.”

He looked dumbfounded as he responded, “I’ll be careful to stay out of your way.” Instead of lashing out at his statement, I took it for the unique dry humor it was intended to be. In doing so, I avoided sparking any fires with the choice weapon of my tongue. The volcano never erupted.

Later, my spouse informed me that it is a lot easier to listen to me when he doesn’t need to feel defensive. (Who wouldn’t feel the need to be on guard when they’re being yelled at?) While I excuse it as passion because I care, he shuts off when he perceives my tone as volatile. Maybe there is something to be said for different perspectives?

His late night tendencies give him the energy to deal with our children at bedtime. While my embrace of the morning helps them get off to school on time. Three little girls need a daddy who welcomes silliness. And I need a laid back man who doesn’t complain that I’m far from perfect. For years, I’ve tried to strongly encourage him to live up to my expectations. Slowly, I’m learning that our differences don’t make us a mismatch. The contrasts between us are why God thought we were the perfect team. I may never look at a pair of mismatched socks the same.

Are you able to embrace your marriage as a mismatch made in Heaven?

If you long to be reassured that your life is normal, be sure to purchase up a copy of Jill Savage’s new book, No More Perfect Moms. And don’t forget to sign up for the Hearts at Home National Conference the weekend of March 15-16 in Normal, IL!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

What kind of mother does that?


Seriously, what kind of mother does that? Emotions flooded through me as if I was reliving the moment all over again...

When my oldest was about 2-years-old, a slight misinterpretation of a prescription had me feeling like the worst. mom. ever. While 5-6 drops seemed like A LOT of drug to put into her little body, I trusted our pediatrician. The first dropperful of medication was accepted without a fight. However, when my compliant, cooperative child resisted the rest of her medicine, I sought out help. Asking my husband to hold her down, I forced every last drop inside of her mouth.

"Drop". That's different than "dropperful". I reread the prescription. Suddenly, the realization that I had just overdosed my little girl plagued me.

As I dialed the number for poison control, every fiber of my body shook with worry. While the voice on the other end attempted to calm my fears, my thoughts were irrational. All I could think about was how I had poisoned my daughter... and held her down forcefully to do it!

In the moment, I didn't feel fit for the profession of motherhood. I was certain no other woman had ever made this type of monumental mistake! Thankfully, I can laugh now as I recount the story. My daughter is 10-years-old; happy and healthy; without any adverse side effects!

Initially, this was an account I didn't want retold to any other human being. I was ashamed and embarrassed. The temptation to keep the story to myself was strong. The problem with not sharing is that I was pretending that it never happened. I wanted to paint the picture that I was the perfect mom. While far from the truth, it was the mask I wanted to wear.

"The thing about masks is that they never bring us closer to who we were created to be. Masks always make shallow what God has intended to be deep. Friendships. Marriages. Families. Churches. Everything in our lives get cheated when we choose to be fake." - Jill Savage

Today, friends laughed with me as I retold the perceived horror of that day. In turn, I was encouraged with stories of other women and their own personal moments of asking "What kind of a mother does that?” Despite my feelings at the moment, I was not alone.

I am not alone.

Jill Savage's book, No More Perfect Moms, reassures us of just that very thing. As though she is reading my mind, I am comforted that:

You are not the only mom who yelled at your children today.
You are not the only mom who can't seem to keep up with the laundry and the house.
You are not the only mom who has poisoned her child.

Honestly, she didn't list the last one but she could have.

My prayer is that my friends and I will embrace authenticity in an effort to deepen our relationship with God and others. It starts with removing our masks. I need to get honest with myself. I will never be the perfect mom... but apparently, God thought I was the perfect mom for three little girls. I embrace that.

Do you have a "What kind of a mother does that?" story that you can share in an effort to remove your own mask?

The theme for this year's National Hearts at Home Conference (March 15-16) is No More Perfect Moms. Don't miss out on hearing Jill Savage and Candace Cameron Bure (DJ from Full House)! Register by this Wednesday, February 20th for the best deal!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Wildflowers, Roses, Specks and Logs

I can always count on my husband. My girls can too. Just this morning, our blonde-haired, brown-eyed 7-year-old asked her daddy. "Dad... you know how today is Valentine's Day... and you sometimes bring us home flowers? Can you bring us home some flowers on your way home from work tonight?" My husband just smiled because he had already delivered.



This is a picture of our dining room table this morning. We are a household of females loved on by the one man we all rely upon. The wall art (previously pointed out to my liking) was a gift he successfully went and picked up without my knowledge months ago. The bag of one of my absolute favorite candy bars was a gift that I won't be opening anytime soon for fear of devouring them too quickly. And then there are the flowers...

Apparently, my daughter proved that flowers really are the way to the heart of a girl... a single blue rose for her, a red one for her little sister and a purple one for the oldest. The wild flowers are mine. Funny thing about this standard token of love... while I love the thought, I'm just not a particular fan of things that die. My husband once asked me what my favorite type of flower was. I responded with "the wild kind". Hence the vase of "wild" flowers.

When I said that I like wild flowers, I meant the kind that show their beauty outside. In the ground. Where they belong. He was determined to find a flower that I would enjoy receiving. In his mind, if he is going to buy his daughters flowers, he cannot leave me out. I LOVE his heart! This just reinforces my point that my man is one you can count on.

Can I be really honest? There are a lot of times I feel like I can NOT count on him. Right or wrong, it's what I feel. Today, I actually found myself disappointed. You read that right. Flowers, chocolates, card and a gift and I am not satisfied. I wanted roses.

Shake your head in disbelief.

Go on.

I am.

How is a woman who says she doesn't care about getting flowers still let down because of the type of flowers she receives?

I don't really know.

Do you know what I do know? I am NOT an easy woman to please. (Surprise!) I am NEVER satisfied. And this revelation helped me recognize that it doesn't really matter how I feel. I can barely sort out my own feelings. They are unreliable and my husband deserves a world of sympathy being married to me.

Recently, I heard Matthew 7:3-5 quoted in relation to marriage. “And why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own? How can you think of saying to your friend, ‘Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend’s eye."

I don't think that I went into marriage wanting to change my husband. But that is exactly what I have been attempting to do for the past 16-1/2 years. The root of my unhappiness when it rears its ugly head is me. All too often, I am picking at his specks instead of dealing with the logs I carry around.

In this season of counting gifts, my dependable man in on the top of the list. I'm human. I don't feel love for my man all the time... no matter how wonderful he is. This Valentine's Day, I am choosing to see my husband as the perfect match for me. For while he has never attempted to change me, that's exactly what he has done. I am so much better for having him in my life.

And I will make this choice again next year on Valentine's Day and every day I need to remind myself that my feelings are unreliable. Not my man.

Still counting gifts...
 
111. Midnights announcing new days
112. Little legs pedaling bicycles uphill
113. Dead-end streets
114. Routine
115. Morning Sunrise
116. Dogs whose tails curl when happy
117. Husband I can count on
118. Chocolates
119. Wild flowers
120. Roses
121. Specks and logs that lead to change...

I'm linking up with my friend Darcy Wiley at her blog, Message in a Mason Jar for her Take Heart series talking about romance. We’d love to have you link up with us and share how God has helped you take heart in the midst of your own struggles in singleness, dating, married life or abandonment. The link-up is open through Friday night.
 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

All becomes Gift

A combination of disappointment, frustration and discouragement has made it difficult for my heart to embrace the new year. "Soul weary" is the perfect description for this season of life. The core of my being has been shaken, overcast by shadows of failings.


The words from 2 Corinthians, chapter 3, verses 16-18 are timely and restore Truth I've already known. "Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal." I must shift my vision from the world and all its flaws to my God who will not disappoint.


The Lenten season is upon us and I've been contemplating if I participate in the tradition of old. Growing up, this was never a practice I was encouraged to take part in. Justified by the idea that every day should leave us reflecting on our lives in relation to Christ's sacrifice for us, I didn't think twice about it. With age, however, comes perspective and a broadening of the world. Explanations from friends who value the ritual leave me contemplating what I myself should abstain from for a season.


Coming off of a year where the fulfillment of my personal vow leaves me questioning the purpose of the journey, I struggle with the benefit of another season of self-denial. While eliminating desserts from my life in an effort to seek God more fully appeared valuable enough, the revelations upon release of such a vow are bewildering. Since I am the only one privy to the information in the depths of my soul, it is only I that can see how far God remains from being my first choice for comfort. My problem is far from decadent chocolate and rich desserts. Clarity confirms that comfort is my idol.


Now what do I do in the face of that truth? While I am still working to unravel the mess of this past year's journey, I hesitate to sacrifice something for the sake of sacrifice. Could that possibly have been the only reason to fulfill my journey as the end came into view?


I've heard it suggested that rather than abstain throughout this season, one should consider adding a practice instead. In an effort to keep my eyes on Christ, I am choosing to count gifts this season. As Ann Voskamp states in her book, One Thousand Gifts, "When I realize that it is not God who is in my debt but I who am in His great debt, then doesn't all become gift?" I've already begun counting and experiencing joy at the work of His hand.


1. Days off school
2. No reason to get out of PJ's
3. Kids who love to craft
4. Children learning
5. Redemptive moments
6. Grace extended from husband
7. Crescent moons shaped like smiles
8. Worship songs speaking my heart
9. The Body of Christ
10. Authentic conversations
11. Friends reaching out
12. Pain that brings positive results
13. Opportunity
14. Notebook paper
15. Ink
16. Cursive handwriting
17. The post office
18. Thank you notes
19. Truths that lead to change
20. Hope
21. The written word
22. Traditions
23. Sleeping children
24. Husband's snoring
25. Limping dog
26. Expectant welcomes home
27. Lips that meet mine alone
28. Laughter of little girls
29. Valentines
30. Friends who share
31. 10-year-old creative minds
32. Chatty 7-year-olds
33. Books read aloud by first graders
34. Preschool fingers cutting
35. Awkward teeth peering through huge smiles
36. Bible verses that establish Truth
37. Minds are capable of memorizing
38. Mentoring relationships
39. Prayer
40. Quiet
41. Barbies at play directed by little girls
42. Sofa forts
43. Lego creations
44. Moments of obedience
45. Kissable foreheads
46. Color
47. Books
48. Water
49. Shared recipes
50. Dark nights
51. Warm blankets
52. Soft pillows
53. Warm shelter
54. Arms around me
55. "Pick me ups" from 4-year-olds
56. Being a stay-at-home mom
57. Classroom parties
58. Partnering with other moms
59. Legs able to run
60. Music
61. Freedom in Christ (Ephesians)
62. God's pleasure in bringing me into His family (Ephesians)
63. Without fault in Christ (Ephesians)
64. Showers of Kindness (Ephesians)
65. God's grace (Ephesians)
66. Holy Spirit (Ephesians)
67. God's guarantee (Ephesians)
68. Blankets raggedy from too much love
69. Teddy bears hugged tightly
70. Brown eyes
71. Blue eyes
72. Pop Tarts
73. Cough medicine
74. School bus drivers
75. Children little enough to carry
76. Kids big enough to walk
77. Multiple bathrooms
78. Peanut Butter & Jelly
79. Nutella
80. Smell of fresh brewed coffee
81. My husband's contagious laugh
82. Coats, hats and gloves
83. Singing girls
84. Balloon play
85. Slipper socks and the smile it brings to a 7-year-old
86. Little legs that jump up and down
87. Glistening frost
88. Soft Kleenex
89. Anticipation
90. Blonde dogs bathing in the sunlight
91. A furry face to greet me each morning
92. Puppy spirit in a geriatric dog
93. Morning sunlight through windows
94. Abundance
95. Those who don't grow weary of doing good
96. Lives worth celebrating
97. Season of Winter
98. Laid back spouse
99. Man who provides for our family
100. Goodbye kisses
101. Little ones waving through windows goodbye
102. Caring Daddy who watches and waves in return
103. To be needed
104. To be wanted
105. Blonde godsons
106. Little girls who melt my heart
107. Hindsight
108. Seasons of life
109. Friends who seek God
110. Friends for my husband
 
And the list goes on... What gifts do you have to count today?
 
"It really is a dare to name all the ways that God loves me." - Ann Voskamp
 
 
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Monday, February 4, 2013

Hearts at Home encourages moms to embrace imperfection!


You always knew you would be the perfect mom. Then you had children.
 
Now that you know more, it’s probably safe to say that most days haven’t turn out like you imagined.
 
We’ve all been there.
 
When life doesn’t measure up to our expectations, it’s easy to feel like we’ve failed as mothers and we begin asking, “What’s wrong with me?”
 
The truth is nothing is wrong with you. You are normal. Your frustrations, your disappointments and your struggles are the same frustrations, disappointments and struggles that every mom is going through.
 
Hearts at Home is offering two opportunities for moms to embrace and celebrate their imperfections right along with others who are doing this “mom thing,” too!
 
No More Perfect Moms, the newly-released book by Hearts at Home Founder and CEO, Jill Savage, will help moms rid themselves of the “Perfection Infection.” With refreshing honesty, author Jill Savage exposes some of her own parental shortcomings with the goal of helping mothers everywhere shelve their desires for perfection along with their insecurities of not measuring up to other moms.
 
And, if you purchase the book any time between February 3-9 (online or at a store…and yes, electronic versions such as Kindle and Nook count too!) and send a copy of your receipt to NoMorePerfectMoms@moody.edu, you'll be given access to well over $100 worth of resources that will help you on your mothering journey - absolutely free! 
 
What will you receive? Click here for a full list of audio workshops, printables and books and all the details about how to buy the book!
 
Then plan to join thousands of moms, just like you, as they celebrate their imperfections on March 15-16, 2013, at the Hearts at Home 2013 National Conference, on the campus of Illinois State University in Normal, IL.
 
Registration is open!
 
Choose the two-day Friday PLUS! option for a main session and three or four workshops on Friday, plus choose three or four additional workshops on Saturday or choose to attend either Friday or Saturday. Add Moms Night Out on Friday for a great day – or two – away!
 
Main sessions feature keynote speakers Candace Cameron Bure – mom, producer, New York Times’ best-selling author and actress, and best known for her role as "D.J." on Full House – and Jill Savage – author and CEO and Founder of Hearts at Home.
 
Moms Night Out welcomes Anita Renfroe, well known for her pop culture parody of the William Tell Overture-Mom Style and special musical guest Meredith Andrews.
 
More than 30 workshops with titles including Seven Habits of Highly Effective Moms, Real Ways to Connect With Your Kids, Boys R Us--Raising Boys from 2 to 22, and Wise Women Raising Wiser Daughters, give you the opportunity to design the day around your own needs.
 
With a sell-out crowd at last year’s conference, early registration is encouraged. The Best Value Registration Deadline is February 20, 2013.
 
Click here for full descriptions of all speakers and workshops and to start the registration process. Group discounts are available!
 
 Imperfect mom.jpg

Imperfect and Intentional

If I can just crawl into bed and get a good night of sleep, all will be well in the morning. My bedroom; the pillow; huddled beneath the blankets: This is my goal. Many times, a restful night will do wonders for yesterday's problems in light of the new day's dawning. Frustrating as it may be, my body needs 8 solid hours of sleep or more in order to cope with the roller coaster of emotions that come with any given day.
 
"If she is crabby, make sure she has had something to eat or send her to bed." This is the advice my mother gave my husband shortly before our wedding day. I cannot deny it. At the hour when many children are being kissed into a world of sweet dreams, my friends laugh, "It is past Tristi's bedtime."
 
They are jokes and I smile. Yet the truth is a reminder of my imperfection. Coming off of a weekend where life was lived and solitude was absent, I am left disturbed. Emotions that lead to actions I am seemingly unable to control remind me of my failures. It's downright maddening.
 
We paid a babysitter in hopes of an evening of cherishable memories. My husband kindly takes the blame I place on him. Deep inside, however, I know there is a plank protruding from my eye as I pick at the specks in his. The ticket stubs from last night's musical stare at me from the counter as a reminder of the messiness of life; of marriage; of me. It always comes back to me. Today is no different.
 
I wake up earlier than I really want. The irritating reminder that I am no longer a morning person. Once those early hours were my solitude. No more. Today, with yesterday and tomorrow, I must waken my children from their slumber. It will not be welcomed. If only they understood how very much I wanted to let them awake restfully on their own!
 
The morning routine begins with breakfast orders and complaints of sore throats and coughs that need assessing. All the while, the clock reminds me that were are on a schedule. I will wait to fuel my body until the oldest girls are on their route to an education I on-again; off-again question if we are doing correctly. My youngest cries that she forgot to put her sausage up, out of reach of the dog. She knows the certain outcome and I cannot assure her of a possibility otherwise. When I finally prepare to eat, part of my healthy choice falls to the floor. This morning has brought nothing different.
 
I fight off the annoyances of sharing my life with another. It should be a blessing. Instead, the gratitude I expressed yesterday for my husband's assistance in putting away the dishes is now a distraction of all that is good. Once again, he didn't do it "right". Will I ever be able to overlook what I perceive to be his disregard my desires and see the obvious diamond in the rough?
 
My days are imperfect. Sharing my life with another human being reminds me of that daily. Adding three more has only magnified my need for change. I am selfish. I am flawed. I am imperfect.
 
I need grace. This world does not offer it to me. As I do my best to keep up with the rat race, reminders hit me from every direction that I simply do not measure up. I must quit the comparison game. Winning is an impossibility when I "compare my insides with the outsides of others".
 
Today I will be intentional. I will seek solitude. The quiet I so desperately need will be protected. My focus will turn to the one place grace is always offered. "Be still and KNOW that I am God." It is here: in His presence, pouring over His words of Grace... this is where I will find peace with my imperfection. Not because my selfishness and flaws are to be overlooked. Instead, because He covered them many years ago on Calvary.
 
Solitude. Grace. Peace. Gratitude. They are mine if I intentionally seek them. I will be hard pressed to find them in this world. For the moment, I must pull away until I remember to lay my imperfections at His feet and quit attempting to do it all on my own. God is good. I must keep my eyes on Him.

"That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever." - 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

Be sure to pick up Jill Savage's new book, No More Perfect Moms this week! (By purchasing any time between February 3-9,you'll be given access to well over $100 worth of resources that will help you on your mothering journey - absolutely free!)