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Tag Archives: Jesus
Oh, it’s good to be back!
Where have I been, you may ask?
Well, I’m not really sure, honestly. Busy. Unfortunately. Too busy.
But, I’ve missed you. I’ve missed this. I’ve missed writing. Just sharing my thoughts. I’ve missed pursuing God’s calling on my life. I’ve missed sharing what God is teaching me, what He is changing within my heart. I’ve been too busy. Too busy to write, but even worse, too busy to listen.
I’ve been busy being a mommy. A wife. Playing, cooking, teaching, leading, organizing, preparing, cleaning. You know…mommy stuff. Important stuff.
But, busyness is just an excuse for not seeking the One thing that should be most important.
I’ve come to this place just recently where God has been whispering to my heart:
Turn your focus to Me
My perspectives are changing.
I have been striving, self-focused, trying so hard to be “better”, more organized…dare I say to be the “prefect” mom.
Does she exist? No. Never.
But in my mind she haunts me. The harder I try and then “fail”, she reminds me that I’m not enough, I’m not “her”, I’m not ever going to keep my house organized, I don’t laugh enough or play enough with my children, I don’t serve enough. I fall short in her eyes. Always. She brings out my ugly, my comparing tendencies, my heartache and insecurities. She reminds me of who I am not.
So, I keep striving. Keep trying harder. Until now, recently, I have heard it within my soul, that longing that there is more than this, that I am missing something.
God is whispering to my heart.
Do I hear Him? Am I pausing long enough to recognize his voice. He’s beckoning me to be still and know Him. Love Him. Trust Him. Believe Him. Rest in Him.
Just Stop Striving
My life is consumed with so many moments that don’t matter. Yes, managing life is necessary, but should never be consuming. No…life is about God, loving God, loving my family, loving His people-those all important relationships in my life.
The more I have struggled to find organization, peace, to “get it together”, the more my life has spun out of control.
I have been looking for peace. When all the while, I have Peace living within me. Whispering my name. Waiting for me to respond, to believe.
Too consumed with myself and my lists, I’ve missed it. And in truth I know life isn’t about me. But, unfortunately, my life speaks differently. It’s about God. It’s about filling my exhausted, weary soul with His spirit, his breath of life.
I’m sitting outside right now listening to those ever present night-time noises, gazing at a magnificent, glowing, serene full moon.
These are the words a weary soul longs to hear, to experience, to believe in.
I am so small. God is so BIG! So…well, everything.
I am not.
Lord, help me to see my place in your story, your kingdom, your plans. Forgive me for making my plans and then trying to include you, rather than trusting in You to create the plan for my life. Let me seek you. Always. I will find ways to go around you. Sadly. To busy myself…again. Please remind me of who You are Lord…again and again.
Busyness sucks the life out of me.
Say No to the Unnecessary
Say Yes to God
And to those things that fill my soul with joy and bring a smile to my face…
- Being with my children
- Connecting with my husband
- Investing in my family
- Building friendships
- Encouraging women
- Reading God’s word
- Reading books that I love
- Writing words that inspire
- Listening to relaxing music
Seek what your soul has been desiring my dear friend.
He is there. Waiting to embrace you and fill your weary hearts with an overflowing love. But you will have to pause long enough to hear his gentle whisper.
He is there. Close your eyes. Breath deeply. Rest. Your mind, your body, your soul.
Don’t miss this moment. Don’t replace it with an insignificant one.
Do you feel it? The deep inner whisper inviting you to Rest…to slow down?
What is your soul longing for?
Don’t miss it. Especially this season. Especially now. Especially today.
Have courage to REST, to breathe, to say NO, to just “be”, to simplify, to say yes to those things that are important.
Today, I am seeking REST. Please say you will too! Let us leave a legacy that brings peace to others’ weary souls.
Lord, let us mamas make every effort to enter the REST you have called us to. Give us wisdom and guidance, perspective and truth. Help us this Christmas Season to be UN-busy. To stop and smile. To look at our children with wonderment and adoration. Help us to model kindness and generosity to our children. Isn’t that more important than the presents, the shopping, the cultural Christmas norms? To build their character, OUR character? Help us to be intentional with our lives-every minute of every day. Let us not waste what we have been given. May we seek YOU and to glorify you in all we say and do. And let us NEVER forget the Son you sent for us to save us from ourselves. To give us grace and mercy where we need it most and to give us everlasting life with YOU. Thank you just doesn’t seem enough. But, may our humble hearts serve you this season with a heart of joy and gratitude. Amen.
Hebrews 4:11 “Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience.”
Please share how you are seeking REST in your lives today!
My sweet Annabella was putting up a bit of resistance tonight for bed. After the 10th time coming out of her room, it was obvious I wasn’t going to get the kitchen cleaned up at that moment. So, when she asked me to come rub her back, I dried my hands and escorted her back to her room. I tucked her in and rubbed her forehead and her back. She was asleep within minutes. I knew she was tired.
I sat there in that moment, looking at my beautiful daughter and I just smiled.
Have you ever thought about how YOU want to be remembered? Have you ever thought of your life with the END in mind, first?
I’m sitting in Starbucks, creating my life plan for 2014. I started listing my priorities for this current year and was inspired to think about how I want to be remembered. I’ve heard others talk about writing their obituaries. To me, writing my obituary is not inspiring. It’s depressing. But thinking about “How I Want To Be Remembered”, now that is inspiring.
As I started writing, I started dreaming of and envisioning my future. I started really thinking about what people will say about me someday…maybe when I’m gone, or maybe when I’m seasoned and gray sitting and reflecting on the one life God had given me. Who was Alissa Perez? Writing about who I want to become, most assuredly helps me to create who I want to be today.
This is who I hope to become…
how I hope to be remembered…
and who I will intentionally strive for being today.
Alissa Perez loved her family and friends, and her love for her God was contagious. Her faith in God was evident in how she lived her life. She taught others to seek first God’s kingdom and her time with God was sacred. She was a devoted wife and her husband was blessed by her all the days of his life. She loved, served and respected him in all he did. Her children adored her and felt calm and peaceful in her presence. She devoted her life to training her children well. She taught them a love of reading, to fear, love and trust God, to respect themselves and others and a genuine love of learning. She showed her children the importance of serving others. She lived selflessly, caring for the needs of other above her own. She had the best smile. And people felt welcome in her presence. Her strong character was apparent to all: integrity, gentleness, compassion, patience and kindness. She cared about others and their circumstances. Her parents always received her heartfelt respect and honor. She invested in her relationships with her friends and family.
She never seemed rushed or in a hurry. Commitment was important in her relationships. She was devoted to prayer and passionately loved to share the message of Jesus with others. The Bible was her book of wisdom, instruction, guidance and truth. She exuded joy-even in difficult circumstances. Thankfulness was in her heart and on her lips. She tried to live simply in a world of abundance. She stuck to her budget and did not desire excess. She was fun to be around and brought humor and grace into her home. She loved to travel and teach her children about the world She listened to jazz and classical music and loved exposing her children to the fine arts. She was quick to listen and slow to speak. When she spoke, she chose words that brought life. She responded with gentleness and grace, not anger and condemnation. She sought God’s wisdom above her own or the opinions of others. She sought order, not chaos but lived a life of freedom and spontaneity. She chose what was better and turned away from that which deterred her from a full life in Christ.
She was confident in who God created her to be and was thankful for the gifts she had been given. She used her talents to the best of her ability in serving the body of Christ. She was not envious but found joy in the blessings of others. She focused on pleasing God, not pleasing man. She loved unconditionally. She lived purposefully. She chose freedom in Christ over fear from the Enemy. She passed on an inheritance of strong faith and character to her children. They will forever be reminded of her love by the intentional memories she created. She was authentic and real. She chose to live for today and hope in tomorrow, rather than regret her yesterdays.
She lived a life full of faith, hope and love.
And above all else she chose LOVE.
How do YOU want to be remembered?
As I begin to pursue intentional living, I am reminded that I am not only responsible for my own life. As the mother of three sweet, precious children, I am responsible for helping mold their character and their lives. What a huge responsibility! So, I started thinking about two questions that I need to answer. First, what strengths do I possess that I want to pass on to my children? And, second, what weaknesses do I struggle with that I would NOT want my children to inherit or learn from me? Whether I realize it or not, I am passing these traits on to my children. So here is my list and my intentional plan to either promote my strengths or change my weaknesses in order to help myself and my children become all that God intends.
- My strengths…
- Faith in Jesus….I will continue to build my relationship with Jesus. Daily. I will make reading God’s word a priority and I will let them see me reading and praying as much as possible.
- Love of reading…I will read to them daily and have books out around the house for them to access easily. I will stop what I’m doing (as much as possible) to read to them when they approach me with a book.
- Integrity…I will continue to make truth be of utmost importance.
- Love of learning…I will look for and provide them with many opportunities to learn. I will engage their curiosity and their natural enthusiasm for life.
- Mercy/compassion…I will show them compassion at all times and model that for them with others. I will love them unconditionally and empathize with their feelings.
- Optimism…I will look for and find the good in people in all circumstances. I will be thankful and content in all situations.
- Love being outside…I will take them to explore nature as much as possible and show them the beauty of God’s creation.
- Love to travel…We will travel with them to as many new places as possible, near and far, while we have the opportunity.
- Good listener…I will really listen to my children as much as possible. I especially will look at them and get to their level when they speak to me.
- Good encourager…I will encourage them in all things. I will build them up with life-giving words. I will speak truth and encourage them to trust God.
- My weaknesses…
- Fear…I will trust God in all things, at all times. I will teach them that with God, we need never to be afraid.
- Worry…I will work on praying instead of wrestling with worry. I will grow in my prayer life, remembering to pray at all times.
- People pleaser…I will remember that the only person I need to please is God alone. He is my judge and my Lord.
- Disorganization…I will simplify as much as possible. I will work on following through with my tasks. God is a God of order, not chaos.
- Too serious sometimes…I will remember to laugh at myself and life. Stop and enjoy today and smile as much as possible.
- Stubborn/prideful..I will acknowledge God’s sovereignty and power in my life. Knowing how BIG God is, reminds me how small I am. Pray for humbleness.
- Judgmental…I will give the grace that I have been so freely given. I will daily remind myself where I have been delivered from. Praise Jesus!
Oh, Lord, this is who I want to become. This is who I want my children to become. Lord, in my own power and strength, I will never be able to master any of this. But it is through your grace and mercy that I have the opportunity to grow in these areas. It is because of your power and generosity that you allow me and my children to grow to become people of strong character. This is my prayer and my greatest desire…to become more like You. Thank you for loving me enough to want this for me too. Amen.