How to Trade in Not Enough for Living Loved

My Journey in Galatians

My first six years of motherhood I lived pulled tight like a tug-of-war rope. I didn’t grow up in a Christian home that taught me the Bible, the Gospel, or the way to follow Jesus. I also didn’t know how to make home. How do I manage to keep a house clean? And how do I raise a child to know Jesus—and eat their broccoli? I really wanted to rock it, but I never was enough.

So I pulled out checklists, tugged on self-sufficiency, and clung tightly to a perfect mom image—and I fell in the mud of depression, anger, and failure.

But then God took the rope.

Do you ever play tug-of-war with measuring up? Striving to do enough so you can be enough?

Oh, sweet mama. There is a better way for living and the Book of Galatians shows us.

Living Loved

Photo Thanks To Unsplash

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God Has a Gift For You This Valentine’s

Romans 3:23-24

I have a love/hate relationship with Valentine’s. I love making cards with the kids and reminding people I love them—I hate the expectations of needing to do something. Kind of feels fake if it’s expected.

And then there’s the question, what is love? If it were up to marketing, love must come with roses and diamonds—or breakfast in bed—or kissing on the beach at sunset. Then come kids and the love picture shifts. Love now looks like pictures of mom and dad kissing in a field while kids go crazy.

Whatever picture of love we grasp for, the gifts it offers don’t last. Like a dozen roses, they seem sweet for a moment, but just wither and are thrown out with the weekly trash.

But God has something greater for us, ladies. God has a gift for you this Valentine’s. It’s not wrapped in foil. It doesn’t melt in our mouth. But, oh, it’s the sweetest gift of love—and it’s yours this Valentine’s. Listen below.

God has a Gift For You This Valentine's (more…)

How to Experience God’s Love When You Feel Unloved

3 Things I Learned From Depression

My thoughts trapped me in a dark pit. When I attempted to climb the slippery walls, of “just try harder,” I’d fall back down, more bruised and depressed. God’s love grew dim.

Just try harder. Keep your house clean—serve your husband—teach your kids—be creative—cook healthy—serve the poor—volunteer—start a business—get in shape—be like that other mom. Just try harder.

And as the weeks lagged on, I felt more miserable, constantly failing to measure up — and I no longer felt loved by God.

I labeled myself: unlovable.

Although I believed in the Gospel, I added my list of qualifications on top of grace.

The same thing happened to the Galatians in Paul’s day. So, what can we learn from the Galatians?

How can we experience God’s love?

How to Experience God's Love When You Feel Unloved

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

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1 Comfort When Someone You Love Dies

Truth to Encourage Your Heart

Dad died more than ten years ago. My brother-in-law died less than two years ago. Mom died months ago. And my heart aches. When someone we love dies, it is difficult to process the “what-ifs.” What if we tried another doctor? What if we called earlier? What if…

But God’s Word has a truth for us to free us from the “what ifs.”

No more guilt.

Listen to this week’s video message below or subscribe to not miss the written blog post later this week.

May you find comfort in the Lord in all your losses,

Seana

When Someone You Love Dies

Photo thanks to unsplash

 

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2 Truths About God’s Love When You’re Sinking in Sin

A Sinners Loving Reminder

This week I really messed up in my sin. I acted selfishly and allowed fear to control my thoughts and how I treated my family. When the conviction came, I drowned in shame and guilt.

I wanted to swim away from the Lord—how to face the God I love with my sin-stained failures? Yet as I twisted through the waves of accusation, He pulled the current toward Himself.

Do you ever feel a conviction about your less-than-lovely thoughts or actions? (more…)

A Mom and Abolitionist Speaks About Family Life

REAL MOM LINK-UP

Jocelyn White is a traveling mom advocating for the end of slavery in our lifetime. I recently interviewed her for Christianity Today Women and we talked about slavery, following Jesus, and how God has led her in motherhood. Her insights will encourage you to serve God in whatever way He calls you.

Read it here. 

jocelyn

image courtesy of
International Justice Mission and Christianity Today

How to Walk by Faith in the Real World

In one week our family will be jobless and homeless. Okay, that sounds dramatic, but it’s true. My husband finishes his ministry commitment in Fort Worth this week and our lease ends on our apartment Sunday. We still don’t know where God is leading us in this next season of ministry.  When I call out to God as fear swirls within, the Spirit softly speaks, “Walk by faith.”

How do mamas walk by faith in the real world?

 

Walk by Faith

Remember what God has done.

The Bible is full of impossible things becoming possible.

Of course there is the Red Sea escape, a rock turning into a flowing spring, and bread appearing just in time every morning—while the Israelites wandered in their land of unknowns.

Then there’s the murderer who turned into a great evangelist, the dead child whom Jesus raised to life, and fishermen becoming leaders in a world-wide movement of God—just to name a few.

Remember our own journeys.

As I look back at my own God-story, I see Him doing many impossible things. First and ultimate, softening my stubborn heart to turn to Him—and another was saving my son from the point of death when he was born—or that time we had $67 left in the bank in seminary and someone gave us a large financial gift.

Trust God is with us (Matt. 28:20).

He will never leave. He never gives up, walks out, or stops hanging out. He is our counselor, teacher, guide, and shepherd. God is with us.

Stay in His Word and in prayer.

Speak truth in your heart (Psalm 15:2). Those nasty peace-destroyers of doubt, fear, and lies wiggle their way into our hearts if we let them. Keep reading. Keep praying, even when it feels weird or distant.

 My little ditty I tell myself: Open the Word and put some in, so my heart’s set on Him and not on sin.

Do the next thing we know to do.

For me, it’s pack another box. Don’t know where I’m going, but I’m on my way. As we wait on God we will be making a stop in California while my mom’s house sells and I say goodbye to the home I grew up in.

Scriptures to encourage you:

on my way

So, how do we walk by faith in motherhood? Remember what God has done. Trust God is with us. Stay in His Word and in prayer. Do the next thing we know to do.

PRAY

God, thank you that I can trust you. You promise to never leave me or forsake me. I trust that you will meet all my needs according to your glorious riches in Christ Jesus. Even if I walk through dark trials, your presence sustains me. Help me to see your path when the way seems most unclear. I want to follow You. AMEN.

RESPOND

Question:Is there an unknown you are facing? I would love to pray for you. Please leave your prayer need in the comments. To leave a comment, just click here.

Is That My Kid? What to Do When You Feel Like the Worst Mom in the World

A REAL MOM GUEST POST by Lucille Williams

This week’s post is from a sweet friend, Lucille Williams (I call her Lu). She is a mom to three grown children, married to a pastor, and has given me lots of wise advice and deep belly laughs over the years. Her new-release, “From Me to We” is a candid, funny, and helpful book on marriage.


Lord, please give me the strength and wisdom to get through today. Please Lord, I need energy—I’m not asking for extra—just enough to do everything I need to today.

Many days started like that when my kids were little, but on this particular day all was well—superb even. My day was going so well that I decided to head to my kids’ elementary school, and watch them play on the playground.

Undercover, of course.

I parked at the far end of the school and watched from the street. I wanted to see how my children interacted when they didn’t know Mom was looking. I smiled as I played Mom Detective, a modern day Sherlock Holmes.

What to do when you feel like the worst mom in the world

 

I noticed a little boy chasing and throwing down all the little girls. They dropped like Hulk Hogan throwing down Rawdy Roddy Piper.

My mouth open and with a huge gasp—who is that child’s mother? Unbelievable. (more…)