5/11/06

Encouragement for Today

(Principal #3)

 

“Children are a Blessing”

Tracie Miles, Graduate of She Speaks Conference

http://proverbs31.gospelcom.net/ss_intro_2006.htm

 

Key Verse:

Psalms 103:13, “As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him.” (NIV)

 

Devotion:

Have you ever had one of those days in which you wondered if God made a mistake by entrusting small children to your care?  I had those thoughts one winter when sickness seemed to be running rampant through every school in our community, and my household was not left unscathed.  Either one, two or all three of my children were sick for six straight weeks, and my husband and I both had our own turns with illness.  When our children are sick, we feel such sympathy for them and they look like little angels lying there all quiet and red-cheeked. But isn’t it so irritating when their discomfort won’t subside and they start taking it out on you?!  

 

I was already annoyed that illness had plagued our family for nearly two months, when I started yet another day off on the wrong foot.  Miraculously, this particular morning everyone appeared to be fever-free, (unless my thermometer had shorted out due to over-usage).  However, peace still escaped us.  As my 3-year-old son was kicking his little legs as fast as they would go while I was relentlessly trying to dress him because he “hated his clothes.”  My middle daughter was having an emotional breakdown because she forgot to write one of her spelling words on her homework sheet, and my oldest daughter was in tears because I refused to purchase more junk from the most recent school fundraiser.  All this was compounded by the Lucky Charms that seemed to have exploded in the kitchen.  I still had to pack lunchboxes and search for everyone’s misplaced shoes. I felt myself losing my grip.

 

I managed to get everyone out the door and off to school, and began my morning commute, all the while feeling angry and frustrated.  It was then that I finally realized I had not looked to God on this busy morning.  I asked God’s forgiveness and asked for Him to help me be the loving mother I’m sure I was yesterday.  

 

I began thinking about my children and thanking God for them despite my bad morning. I recalled how my middle daughter had earned the nick-name the “boo boo queen” at an early age. Between the ages of 18 months and five years old, she visited the emergency room six times.  One of her most serious accidents involved falling through a hole in the floor of an attic on the second floor of a two-story house.  The moment she vanished into thin air and fell through that hole, I helplessly looked down in horror as her little body plunged to the concrete garage floor 15 feet below.  But something miraculous happened - I watched her bounce off of the hard concrete floor as if she had landed on a big fluffy pillow.    She had a small knot on her forehead, but not a scratch, bruise or broken bone in her tiny little body. There is no doubt God was with her that day, protecting her. 

 

I was reminded that I am his child too, even though I am all grown up now.  God reassured me that He wants to protect me from harm as well, and He will always be there to catch me when I fall.     

 

As we care for our children’s endless needs and wants, may we never take for granted how blessed we are to have them in our lives. If we focus on the demands such as changing diapers, checking homework, or the many expenses children bring, we will soon lose sight of the treasures right in front of our eyes.

 

Mother’s Day is a day for women to receive appreciation for all the endless loving things they do for their families.  It is a day to thank our mothers and mother figures for all of their loving efforts throughout our lives.  Mother’s Day is also a day for mothers themselves to be thankful ... thankful that God blessed us with children, and gave us the Bible to teach us how to be godly mothers.  Most of all, we can each be thankful to Him for “mothering” us despite all our falls.

 

My Prayer For Today:

Lord, please guide my thoughts and actions as I carry out my daily tasks, whether big or small. Please guard my heart so that I can handle struggles with love and compassion in my heart.  Teach me through Your loving words, how I can become a godly mother and help me raise children who will glorify You.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 

Application Steps:

Seek God’s forgiveness for any lack of patience with little ones.  Pray that He will grant you unnatural patience and compassion to deal with future challenges, which will surely come when dealing with children.  Thank God with your whole heart for the children in your life, and ask Him to help you never lose sight of how precious they are.

 

Reflection Points:

Have you thanked God recently for the children in your life, whether they are your own or children that God has placed in your path?

 

Do you ever find yourself yelling at your children for mistakes when you know in your heart that you should deal with the situation with loving, tender discipline instead?

 

Do you ever feel guilty for lashing out your loved ones, when it could have been prevented if you had taken that problem to the Lord first?

 

Power Verses:

Proverbs 31:28, “Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her.” (NIV)

 

Romans 8:16, “The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.” (NIV)

 

1 John 3:1, “How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God.” (NIV)

 

Mark 10:14-15, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.  I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.” (NIV)

 

Additional Resources:

Being a Great Mom, Raising Great Kids, by Sharon Jaynes

http://proverbs31.gospelcom.net/newresources_greatMom.htm

 

The Mommy Manual, by Barbara Curtis

http://proverbs31.gospelcom.net/newresources_mommyManual.htm

 

Out of the Mouth of Babes, by Wendy Pope

http://proverbs31.gospelcom.net/newresources_mouthBabes.htm