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The Dandelion Story

Posted by on May 29, 2018 in Blog, Bonus Days | 0 comments

I grew up on a dairy farm, so my home was surrounded by lots of pastures. One day a friend from church came over so we could play together. As we walked down the road toward the barn, she saw a pretty group of dandelions under the fence. She wanted those dandelions. Being the helpful friend that I was, I quickly crawled under the fence, into the pasture, and grabbed the dandelions. What I didn’t realize at the time was that I also crawled through a patch of poison ivy. Long story short, I spent the next week very red and itchy. I learned a very powerful lesson that afternoon. The thing that looked pretty and friendly was anything but that. I ended up in a mess of weeds with plants that were unhealthy for me. Have you ever...

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Temper Tantrums in the Grocery Store

Posted by on May 21, 2018 in Blog, Bonus Days | 0 comments

I was horrified as I stood in the grocery store aisle. My two-year-old daughter, Darcy, was screaming and flailing her arms as she sat on the floor. “Stop, Darcy! You’re not going to get cookies that way.” Feeling my face flush, I tried to avert my eyes from the scowling woman walking by. I felt like a bad mother, overwhelmed with how to cope with my daughter’s disobedience. But in time I learned some important things to help me respond in a loving way, and I think they might also be helpful to you. I learned not to take my daughter’s behavior personally. I became frustrated because it felt like she represented my bad mothering. But Darcy chose her reaction, and I could only influence her through disciplining her effectively. Therefore, I didn’t need to become angry. I realized...

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Mommy is a Bad Guy

Posted by on May 11, 2018 in Blog, Bonus Days | 1 comment

Red and blue lights flashed in my rearview mirror. My heart sank. My three-year-old couldn’t have been more thrilled. “A policeman is chasing us!” He squealed with delight. “Um, well he’s not exactly chasing—” “And you’re running away! We’re running away from the policeman!” Ben shrieked in excitement. Good grief. How quickly I’d become a fugitive. I pulled over and dropped my head into my hands. This moment was the perfect summary to a frustrating and difficult week. Just getting the kids into the car that morning had taken a ridiculous amount of time and an unreasonable amount of resistance. My hope was to make it to the gym where my kids could play and I could run away—er, I mean, run on the track. And while lost in my thoughts, my foot got a little too heavy on...

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His Grace is Enough

Posted by on May 10, 2018 in Blog, Bonus Days | 1 comment

WHY DOES NO ONE LISTEN UNTIL I AM YELLING? The above phrase leaves my lips far more than I care to admit. I lose my cool more often than I should and I am not the godly mother I need to be as often as I’d like. I have four children, and in their infancy, I had four children under the age of three. Life was crazy and I was in survival mode. I’ve never actually left survival mode and although my children are now school-aged, life is still crazy. I am not perfect. I falter. I fall. I fail often. In motherhood, in life, I need God’s grace far more than I seek, and far more than I deserve. Thankfully, His grace is not earned, but freely given. And I’m so grateful that His grace is enough. As...

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Act Like Men

Posted by on Apr 30, 2018 in Blog, Bonus Days | 0 comments

“Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.  Let all that you do be done in love.” So Paul exhorts the Corinthians in his first letter (16:13-14). We live in a day that often lacks a clear understanding of biblical masculinity. Society does not offer a strong definition to boys of what it means to be a man. The examples in pop culture, sports, and politics often show weak and pitiful models of sensuality, selfishness, and foolishness. However, the church, and more specifically, Christian fathers, can carry the torch of challenging the next generation to be godly men. So if the Bible challenges us to “act like men,” we should be able to answer definitively, “What is a man?” Robert Lewis’ excellent work challenging fathers to raise their sons to be godly men influenced me a great deal several years...

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A Lesson in Respect

Posted by on Apr 27, 2018 in Blog, Bonus Days | 1 comment

My children asked what time their grandmother would arrive at the airport. I could see their joyous expectation of her arrival. On the way to school, they asked, “Will Grandmother be with you when you pick us up this afternoon?” Back when I was young and my grandmother was alive, she lived close enough where we were able to see her weekly. It was a tremendous joy to watch her as she greeted us with the door open and a big smile. In a strong but gentle voice she would look at us, grinning and saying, “Get over here and give me a hug.” The aroma of apple pie baking in the oven was heaven. We always felt the warmth of her love demonstrated through her actions. To give and receive love is a gift from God, and our...

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