- 2016Jul 20
It is easy to re-live the hurt of a devastating divorce or failed relationship over and over again. We replay the words of old, the wounds they left, and how they’ve forever scarred us. We think of what he said to us and what he did. We stew. We steam. We fester. We mull it over. And if we aren’t careful, we allow that hurt (whether warranted or not) to affect our ability to successfully co-parent that precious gift from God that was left behind.
Single Parent, be careful. Be very careful. The children that God has given you to steward are far too precious to allow anything to affect their futures. The lack of a second parent in the home is hard enough. Don’t make it even more difficult by allowing the enemy to bring fault over and over again to the other parent (even if he or she has done wrong). There is no joy in that place.
Want some friendly words of advice?
Swallow your pride.
Bite your tongue until it nearly falls off.
Edify your children with words of encouragement. Don’t tear them down with words of defeat about their opposite parent.
Pray for your ex more than you talk about them.
Jennifer Maggio is an author and speaker. She is also CEO and Founder of The Life of a Single Mom Ministries. She is passionate about helping single parents find freedom in Christ and healing from their past. For more information, visit www.thelifeofasinglemom.com.
- 2016Jun 29
Volunteers are a critical piece of the body of Christ and most ministries, communities, and nonprofits. And while we know that Jesus was the perfect example of servanthood and the ultimate model for our own behavior as Christians, it is also important that we honor our volunteers in our churches.
Volunteers take time for their busy schedules to serve in your ministry, organization, or church, because they are passionate about your cause. They want to see single moms encouraged. They want to feed the homeless. They want to honor the Lord with their talents and skills. While most do not do it for any type of recognition, it is always important to honor those who are sacrificing their time away from family and friends. It is important that they know you value them and that their work within your church matters.
Take a volunteer to lunch. It’s such a simply gesture, but so powerful. Taking the time to get to know a volunteer and using personal time, such as your lunch break, to do so, not only let’s them know you appreciate their service, it gives them the gift of your time.
Pray for your volunteers. The best way to honor a volunteer is to stop and pray for their specific needs. Believe God with them that their child will be healed, their finances will improve, or their path will be made clear. Whatever the need, taking that few minutes to pray is worth it.
Hold an honor banquet in their honor. Banquets don’t have to cost a ton of money. Set up a nice dinner at your home. Take a moment to share something special about each honoree.
Write a card or letter. Who takes the time to do this anymore?! What a neat surprise for a volunteer to receive a handwritten note from you telling them how much you appreciate their service.
People often gravitate to places where they are celebrated. While none of these suggestions will break the bank or even amount to much of your time, they can go a long way in encouraging your support team to keep on keeping on. Most support groups, ministries, and churches couldn’t survive without the commitment of faithful volunteers. Celebrate and honor your volunteers today.
Jennifer Maggio is the CEO/Founder of The Life of a Single Mom Ministries, a nonprofit committed to connecting single mothers to a local church. The Life of a Single Mom works with churches around the globe to help them establish a support group for single parents, host life-changing single parent events, and offer Bible study and resources materials. For more information, visit http://www.thelifeofasinglemom.com.
- 2016Jun 15
I recognize that holidays can be a difficult time for anyone, but particularly if you are parenting alone. My hope is to equip you with tools that will encourage you along your journey.
If not careful, Father’s Day for a single mom can be a disaster. What is often a celebration in May on Mother’s Day can become a tragedy in June on Father’s Day, unless we are mindful of our thoughts and actions. Mother’s Day is a celebration of all things mom. It is a time to focus on the great mothers in our lives – mom, grandmother, sister, friend, or aunt. It is a time to give thanks to God for those precious kids he has blessed us with.
Sadly, Father’s Day can be a time for single moms to focus on lack, e.g. lack of an active father in their children’s lives, lack of what you had hoped would be a forever-marriage, etc. Now, of course, this isn’t all single mothers, but if you do happen to find yourself there today, here are a few tips to encourage you:
- Focus on what you do have. Maybe your children do not have an active father in their lives. Do they have a male mentor? A grandfather? A youth group leader? A pastor? A neighbor? Choose to focus on the positive male role models in your children’s lives and honor them. And if there is a shortage of male role models, we can absolutely turn the focus on an amazing Heavenly Father!
- Your Heavenly Father fills the gap. Maybe Father’s day is hard, because you know that you couldn’t possibly fill the role of mom and dad… and frankly, you are exhausted from trying! Know that God is an amazing Father and he is strong, where we are weak. He can and will fill in the gaps in your home, in your children’s lives, and in your weaknesses.
- Don’t discount the value of your child’s father.Okay, so this one is a toughie. Maybe your child’s father isn’t Father of the Year. Maybe you are really struggling with forgiveness, because there have been times (maybe many), when your children have been disappointed by a missed visit or broken promise. If their father is in their life, even if the situation isn’t great, choose to honor their father’s position in their life. Your children love their dad, even if he has made some poor choices and disappointed them, and even if they are older and act out! He is part of them. And there is little worse you could do than destroy their father verbally in front of them. Choose the high road, even if the same courtesy hasn’t been done to you. God (and your children) will honor you for it.
- Be active today. Maybe your children are with their father today and you are alone. Do something worthwhile. Invite friends over for a barbecue. Read a good book, that you wouldn’t otherwise have enjoyed with the kiddos there. Clean out a flower bed or rearrange your living room. Don’t sit by and let the day pass you by, feeling sorry for yourself. The same can be true, if your children aren’t with their dad. Choose to make this day a great one!
Jennifer Maggio is the CEO and Founder of The Life of a Single Mom Ministries. From her personal experiences of tragedy and single parenting, she has a deep desire to show others the love of Christ in a tangible way. She is author to four books and mother of three. For more information, visit www.thelifeofasinglemom.com.