Tag Archives: Jesus

Keeping Focused on the Cross

23 Dec

As the month of December progresses and we get closer to Christmas day, it has become apparent to me how many things we have fighting for our attention, this month more than any other month of the year. In addition to our normal life, there are so many other things to do.  I question myself…

Have I bought enough? Have I bought too much? Did I remember to ship everything on time? Should I get a present for my 3rd cousin’s husband’s aunt?  Have I wrapped everything that I bought?  Does my wrapping paper match my Christmas decorations?

Did I do enough with the kids? Did they see Santa and get a perfect picture in his lap with matching outfits?  Did we do all of the Christmas crafts with glue and cotton balls and paint and cinnamon extract and paint and fingerprints that I pinned?  Did we do enough random-acts-of-kindness?

Did I DVR all of the Christmas cartoons?  Did the kids get to see A Charlie Brown Christmas and How the Grinch Stole Christmas and Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer and Prep and Landing?  Did they get to eat popcorn while they watched them?

Did I forget to send a Christmas card to anyone who will be offended if they don’t get a Christmas card?  Was the picture of the kids on the Christmas card good enough?  Did I spell everything on the card correctly and spread the love of Jesus in 10 words or less?

Add to that the ridiculousness of what is in the media, plus the baking and cleaning that is required this time of year, and it is easy to lose focus.

To all of my brothers and sisters in Christ, Let’s not do that!

All of these distractions are things of the world, not of God.  Christmas is a celebration of Jesus’ birthday, and nothing more.  Santa Claus and cartoons and Christmas cards are awesome and fun and I love them, but they should not distract us from the true meaning of Christmas.

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For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.  Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the LORD Almighty will accomplish this.  Isaiah 9:6-7
For the next 2 days, I am going to stop worrying about the things of this world that the devil is putting in my way.  I am going to know that I am good enough because Jesus has made me good enough.  He left his home in Heaven and was born as a human and lived on this earth so that I can live without fear of sin or death. I am going to celebrate Jesus’ birthday and make sure that my kids do, too, and I will know that that is more important than any cartoons I have DVR’d or crafts I have pinned.
Merry Christmas to you all!

Monday Praises-God Keeps His Promises

2 Dec

I will admit, this Monday got away from me!  It’s hard sending Jason off to work after a little vacation, and Maddie is sick, and I get a bad feeling in the pit of my stomach every time I even think about Christmas play practice last night, and my grandma isn’t doing very well, and, well…blah. I could give a long list of complaints about today.

I have been sitting here looking through YouTube, hoping for some inspiration for this post, and I happened upon this:

Isn’t it wonderful?  Whitney Houston was so talented, and I have always loved this version of Do You Hear What I Hear. I have been listening to it over and over.  Jason is trying to watch a football game and he probably thinks I’m crazy, but i just love it.

I want to praise God now for always keeping His promises, but most importantly His promise for a Savior…a way out.  I have some petty little problems, but God is bigger and Jesus is bigger than any Monday.

An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.  But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.  Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.  This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”  Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,  “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.” Luke 2:9-14

Monday Praises-Buzz Lightyear’s Take on Thanksgiving

25 Nov

Do you ever have so much to say that you can’t say it?  I am feeling that way this morning.  I have so many things to praise God for that I can’t get my thoughts together to put them into words.  I have been in a state of thanksgiving this month, and now here we are with Thanksgiving just a few days away.

Charlie and Maddie are definitely tired of hearing about Thanksgiving and all that we have to praise God for.  I told them this morning at breakfast that this was Thanksgiving week and we would be spending extra time thanking God for all he had blessed us with.  I told Charlie to try to think of some things he wanted to thank God for.  He was dressed up as Buzz Lightyear at the time, and he told me, “I can’t do that.  I am Buzz and all he does is fight aliens.”

I thank God this week for sending his son, Jesus, to die on the cross for me.  I thank Him for allowing me to be born in a country that allows me the freedom to worship Him.  I thank Him for blessing me and my family with food, shelter, and everything we need and also what we want.

I am also thankful that Buzz is around to keep the house free of aliens!

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#DearCongress – A Special Edition of What-They-Said-Wednesday

2 Oct

#Dear Congress,

Hi!  My name is Laresa and I am a middle-class stay-at-home-mom from North Carolina.  I am a conservative Republican and a Christian.

At this point in  my life, I feel very removed from the goings-on in government.  I do take the time to research candidates and vote every 4 years, but other than that I don’t care too much about you.  I have a feeling that you feel the same about me.

I do catch snippets of news and read some news articles, so I am not totally ignorant of the behavior of my elected officials.  I have been paying a little attention to your latest tantrum and the resulting government shutdown, and I ask you this: What are you thinking?

My nephew Aaron, who is 12, is spending the day with me.  I asked him what he thinks of your shutdown.

“I think it’s stupid,” he answered.

“Why do you think it’s stupid?”

“The government can’t just give up because it’s hard.  This is the future of our country.  And that’s all I am going to say.” Gotta love Aaron!

I really appreciate what Aaron said, because he is the one who is really going to be effected by your current actions.  This is his future that we are talking about, and the future of all of our children.

This is hard, isn’t it? But there you are, throwing your tantrum, unwilling to talk or compromise, getting your paychecks, giving up.

You are so removed from normal American people that you have forgotten what hard is, and some of you grew up in such a privileged lifestyle that you never knew the meaning of hard in the first place.  You don’t know what it’s like to wait at hospitals and doctor’s offices and urgent cares, or what it’s like to go to the grocery store with a 2 and 4-year old and try to use your coupons to stay on a budget, or what it’s like to not go somewhere because gas is too expensive, or to decide which bills you can pay on time and which can wait until the next paycheck.

And I’ll tell you, because you have forgotten, that what I have just mentioned is nothing.  My life, what may be hard for me, is not hard compared to others’ struggles.  There are mothers who have hungry children and no diapers and can’t keep their families warm or clothed.  Those are difficulties that I cannot comprehend, so I know that you can’t! Keeping our government running is too hard for you, so you would never be able to survive what normal people go through every day.

I do have hope, but it’s not in you, Congress.  My hope is in Jesus.  He cares about us, about the people who know what hard is.  He understands what we are going through because He goes through the hard times with us.  He shares in our tears and our struggles.  He will judge you harshly one day, as He will all of us, and that’s when you will learn the meaning of hard.

I don’t worry too much about you or think too much about you, not because I am not concerned or because I don’t care, but because my ultimate trust is in Christ Jesus, not in humans here on Earth.  He will take care of me in ways that you cannot, and He doesn’t want me to spend my time worrying.  That’s not how life is supposed to be lived. That’s not why Jesus suffered and died on the cross.

“I am leaving you with a gift — peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give isn’t like the peace the world gives. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” John 14:27

Jesus’ gift of peace of mind and heart is for all of us: Democrats and Republicans, rich and poor, EVERYONE.  Please claim that gift today, then go and do the hard work that we elected you to do. 

Thank you for your time,

Laresa

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/10/07/weekly-writing-challenge-and-now-for-something-completely-different-2/

Monday Praises: What God Can’t Do

23 Sep

Good Monday morning, everyone!

Se excited for my Monday morning link-up today with Walk Humbly With God!  I love starting out my week looking for ways to praise God.

I have so many reasons to praise Him!

Truly Blessed!

Truly Blessed!

I don’t want to give you all the wrong impression: my life isn’t perfect by any means.  I do have Jesus in my heart, however, and even when things are going wrong, which IS guaranteed to happen on this earth, I AM guaranteed to have peace and joy.

I found this great article this morning: 10 Things God Can’t Do.

You know, there are a lot of things I do wrong.  I yell sometimes.  I feel superior sometimes.  I feel like a loser sometimes.  I get worn down and I sin.

But God is always there when I can’t be.  He doesn’t get tired.  He doesn’t think I (and my sin) am too much to handle. He is everything that I can’t be.

I want to praise God today for being there when I am not.  He picks up my slack every day.  He loves me anyway.

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Dying Easter Eggs

28 Mar

We have had a lot of fun this week beginning our Easter traditions.  This is the first year that Charlie really understands what is going on, and of course if Charlie likes it Maddie is totally into it!  We have been learning a lot with our resurrection eggs and some library books about the whole point of Easter-that Jesus died and was resurrected.  We have also been doing the other Easter stuff, like Easter egg hunts and dying eggs.  We dyed our eggs on Monday, and I am just now getting around to posting about it!

I had aspirations to do lots of great, creative things with our Easter eggs, but ended up just buying the good ol’ Paas Easter egg kit and going for it.  We didn’t even write on them with crayons before we dyed them!  Maybe next year…

Both Maddie and Charlie got a big kick out of watching the color tablets dissolve in the vinegar.

Both Maddie and Charlie got a big kick out of watching the color tablets dissolve in the vinegar.

Working...

Working…

They immediately wanted to take the eggs out of the dye!  I had to make them leave them a little longer so the colors would be a little brighter.

They immediately wanted to take the eggs out of the dye! I had to make them leave them a little longer so the colors would be a little brighter.

Green hands!

Green hands!

Our eggs had a slightly more "natural" color since our eggs were blue and brown instead of white!  I like how they turned out.

Our eggs had a slightly more “natural” color since our eggs were blue and brown instead of white! I like how they turned out.

...and displayed on the table.

…and displayed on the table.

Now the kids can’t wait to destroy the eggs on Easter day!  They want to crack them open so badly.

I have seen some other really cool things with Easter eggs.  One of my favorite blogs is Glitter ‘N Glue, and she had a great post today featuring DIY Glittered Easter eggs.  I wish I had seen this before we dyed our eggs!  Click on the link to see her idea: http://glitternglue.com/2013/03/28/diy-decorative-glittered-easter-eggs/.

This site also has some really cool ideas: http://www.thegirlcreative.com/2013/03/24/creative-ways-to-decorate-easter-eggs.html.

Next year, I am definitely getting more creative with our eggs!  Or I may just stay up late one night and do it myself…