16

Broken But Not Forgotten

 

cropped-800px-Soap_bubbles-jurvetson1

She was so bubbly during dinner time. Ate her food so quickly in order to make it on time to church for her usual Wednesday night youth group bible study.  A few hours later when it was over, her mom pulled into the church parking lot to pick her up. She opened the car door to take a seat and immediately her mother noticed that there was something different.  Something heavy in the air. Nothing bubbly about it. Not wanting to be intrusive, her mom casually asked how her night went, to which she answered a short  CeliArt © 2015 @Time2Refuel ™  Mom pressed a bit more to discuss the topic they had studied that night and quickly moved on to ask who she had been “hanging out” with.  The answer was pained, abrupt and disjointed.  Leading her mom to believe that the heavy feeling she felt was not just her imagination but rather in her daughter’s demeanor. Point blank her mom asked, “Are you okay?”
To which she received a quickCeliArt © 2015 @Time2Refuel ™

Her daughter was very insistent and went as far as saying  CeliArt © 2015 @Time2Refuel ™

CeliArt © 2015 @Time2Refuel ™

The truth…she was tired.  Tired of being ignored.  Later on that night she let her mother into the truth of the matter.

CeliArt © 2015 @Time2Refuel ™

CeliArt © 2015 @Time2Refuel ™

Her bubbly demeanor was burst

Can you relate? What do you do when your teen feels pushed aside, forgotten or left out?  My heart breaks every time I think about what she must have felt.  As an adult I’ve experienced that sensation of being left out, not being able to connect with those that we’d like to be friends with and the pain that goes with it. Imagine how much more devastating to a teenaged girl. I can see how that could happen to me because I was quite shy.  This young girl however is extremely outgoing, involved in her church and always willing to help a hand. All the adults rave about her.  You couldn’t ask for a sweeter girl. So why do kids her age not seek her out or include her. The saddest part is that this girl has been battling this issue quietly for several years now.  She confessed to her mother that she even opened up about it during a bible study one night last year.  She told them she felt left out and how she would really like to feel included, like part of the group.  Do you know that not one girl approached her afterward.  Poor thing was so disillusioned.  It just doesn’t make sense.  If anyone has some insight I’d love to pass it on.

As a parent our first instinct would be to protect our child’s heart.  It’s so easy to get caught up in the hurt which quickly turns into defensive anger.  What do you do when they get angry because they just can’t deal with it anymore?

CeliArt © 2015 @Time2Refuel ™

Take this opportunity to speak to them about how God wants them to trust Him completely and that sometimes we place too much emphasis on the wrong things.  How they shouldn’t let circumstances change who they are but rather allow God to mold them into who He knows they can be.

CeliArt © 2015 @Time2Refuel ™

“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe, dark, motionless, airless, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable.”―

C.S. LewisThe Four Loves

I’m praying for God to heal this girls wounded heart and send her some very special, close friends.  That He in turn stir their hearts to seek her out, forming a bond created by His power. That she not allow anger in but rather cast it out in the name of Jesus and let down her walls in order to truly, freely trust that God is in control. 

Though she may feel broken, she is not forgotten

Will you please join me in praying for this young lady that so desperately wants to connect? Also for her mother who is heartbroken for her daughter and probably won’t be getting much sleep tonight. If so please show your support by leaving your prayers and words of encouragement in the comments.CeliArt © 2015 @Time2Refuel ™

 

 

 

CeliArt © 2015 @Time2Refuel ™

 

Happy to be linking up withModest Mondays, Proverbial Homemaker, Motivate and Rejuvenate MondaysA Mama’s Story, What Joy is Mine, The Life of Faith, Mom’s the Word, Titus 2sDay, Testimony Tuesday, #RaRaLinkUp, Purposeful FaithCornerstone Confessions, Blog HopTeaching What Is Good,Wise Woman, WholeHearted Wednesday, Women With Intention, Three Word WednesdayTellHisStoryCoffee for your Heart, Wednesday Prayer Girls, Word Filled WednesdayI Choose Joy Link UpThought Provoking Thursday Link Up, The Deliberate Mom, Growing in GraceA Field of Wild Flowers, Angela Parlin,While I Wait,  Arabahjoy Grace & Truth, Imparting GraceLittle Things ThursdayGraced SimplicityFellowship Fridays,  Friday Favorites, Friday Flash Blog,MomfessionalsFaith Filled Friday,Give Me Grace, The Weekend Brew,Sunday Stillness,A Group Look, Spiritual Sundays, Faith N Friends, DancingWithJesus

3

Careful What You Wish For

CeliArt © 2015 @Time2Refuel ™

 

It was about 5:15 am when he climbed down from his bunk-bed. Stomach spasms and nausea hit like angry, swollen waves forcing him to clutch his belly in desperation. He ran to the nearest sink hitting the kitchen counter first. Oh how I wish I would have emptied the sink earlier. No matter…I need to focus on getting to the bottom of what’s causing this nausea. Did he eat something last night that didn’t agree with him? Could it be the Tupperware full of sweet peppers he consumed after a bag of caramel corn? Not exactly the best combination, but no. The slight heat radiating from his brow was the final tell tale proof…the flu had reared it’s head and it was ugly.
Today I’m playing nursemaid to my youngest. My poor baby…sure he’s 12 and taller than me, but he’s still my baby people. About 2 nights ago as he was doing his homework at the kitchen table he randomly stopped and said “I haven’t been “really” sick in a VERY long time. I wish I would get sick, like really really sick”. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. Who wishes to be sick. Of course he’s just thinking of having a day off from school and not about the pain and miserable discomfort that comes with it. So I proceed to remind him about how terrible it is to wish such a thing and to try and remember how bad it feels. You think he’d take a moment to ponder. He took a moment alright. He took a moment and prayed a really fast prayer that went like this, “Dear God, ppleease, please, please let me get really really sick, Amen”. What the!?!?!? Is he kidding me right now? Who does that? Am I forgetting what it’s like to be 12 or is he off his rocker? I tell you that I still don’t get it, but it did remind me of something.
How many times do we go through rough patches, painful things caused by bad choices we’ve made and as time goes by we forget the severity of the pain it brought and make the same mistakes wishing, praying for the same again. We in essence bring on a “spiritual flu” of sorts. It’s only when the pain hits that we see the error in our ways and ask ourselves “What was I thinking?”
It’s our humanity. We’re broken and scarred but luckily we have a savior that looks passed that and sees our hearts intention. He takes our bad choices and uses them for good. We’re suppose to learn from our situations, choices, decisions. Do we have to bang our heads against the wall each time? No, definitely not but it all lies in the choices we make. What we think is good for us in the moment is not necessarily what’s best for us in the long run. If only we would commit this to memory so that what we’re learning is to change and seek Him first before making any decisions.
In the end He wants what’s best for us, to heal and make us well. Who better to put our plans, future, well-being and trust in? There is none other.

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.Jeremiah 29:11

Now go, Rest in Him and let Him replenish your thirst. Hopefully it’s just a 24 hour thingy.

 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Matthew 11:28

 

I’m linking up with: Modest Mondays, Proverbial Homemaker, Motivate and Rejuvenate MondaysA Mama’s Story, What Joy is Mine, The Life of Faith, Mom’s the Word, Titus 2sDay, Testimony Tuesday, #RaRaLinkUp, Purposeful FaithCornerstone Confessions, Blog HopTeaching What Is Good,Wise Woman, WholeHearted Wednesday, Women With Intention, Three Word WednesdayTellHisStoryCoffee for your Heart, Wednesday Prayer Girls, Word Filled WednesdayI Choose Joy Link UpThought Provoking Thursday Link Up, The Deliberate Mom, Growing in GraceA Field of Wild Flowers, Angela Parlin,While I Wait,  Arabahjoy Grace & Truth, Imparting GraceLittle Things ThursdayGraced SimplicityFellowship Fridays,  Friday Favorites, Friday Flash BlogMomfessionalsFaith Filled Friday, Fath and FellowshipGive Me Grace, Still Saturdays, Saturday SoireeThe Weekend BrewSunday StillnessA Group Look, Spiritual Sundays, Faith N Friends, DancingWithJesus, Renewed Daily

 

 

#Time2Refuel

3

Summer Reading List

cropped-image_2013-11-06_1707571.pngChallenging and age appropriate books can be difficult to find.  It seems that these days everything is riddled with explicit language or sexual connotation. I personally struggled finding books that were both captivating, appropriate and also at my children’s reading level.

I’m not crazy about testing but years ago I had my children tested to find out what their Lexile Reading Measure was.  This was just a way for me to accurately select books that would challenge as well as entertain them on a suitable level.

My daughter was reading at a college level by the time she was in 6th grade and my son was reading at a 7th grade level when he was in 4th grade so you can understand my dilemma.

Maybe you’re in the same position and are struggling to find reading material for your kids.  Below you’ll find a list of some of our favorites.This is a great way to start choosing interesting books for your kids to read.  If they’ve already read these I suggest you look up similar books by entering your book titles on http://www.whatshouldireadnext.com/. I found this site quite helpful when I ran out of options.

If you had your child tested and have a Lexile score then you can go to https://lexile.com/ and look up books within your child’s Lexile Level.

Happy Reading…


http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00JRTM832?creativeASIN=B00JRTM832&linkCode=w00&linkId=UAPSU5IQIIFXZEN5&ref_=as_sl_pc_qf_sp_asin_til&tag=time20b-20http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0440409411?creativeASIN=0440409411&linkCode=w00&linkId=Z5EB5422QWONXQ4G&ref_=as_sl_pc_qf_sp_asin_til&tag=time20b-20
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/044040942X?creativeASIN=044040942X&linkCode=w00&linkId=CTQO6FGIFJPSYTHF&ref_=as_sl_pc_qf_sp_asin_til&tag=time20b-20http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0545316480?creativeASIN=0545316480&linkCode=w00&linkId=QZRT4E2ZDOSXWXZB&ref_=as_sl_pc_qf_sp_asin_til&tag=time20b-20

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0439023521?creativeASIN=0439023521&linkCode=w00&linkId=G3AXZG6Q5JUOFLL5&ref_=as_sl_pc_tf_til&tag=time20b-20http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0842309071?creativeASIN=0842309071&linkCode=w00&linkId=257MLBTODDFBM2YJ&ref_=as_sl_pc_qf_sp_asin_til&tag=time20b-20http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0375826696?creativeASIN=0375826696&linkCode=w00&linkId=MS5J4UN5GZCI46C3&ref_=as_sl_pc_tf_til&tag=time20b-20http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0061146307?creativeASIN=0061146307&linkCode=w00&linkId=2WHNMVRPXURPQ5Q3&ref_=as_sl_pc_tf_til&tag=time20b-20

List of books by Lexile Levels:   

  • The Enchanted Castle by: Edith Nesbit                                                                  Lexile Level: 210L
  • The Castle in the Attic by: Elizabeth Winthrop                                                       Lexile Level: 750L
  • Battle For the Castle by: Elizabeth Winthrop                                                          Lexile Level: 700L
  • Dragon Rider by: Cornelia Funke                                                                            Lexile Level: 710L
  • Left Behind “Kids” Series by: Jerry B Jenkins; Tim LaHaye                                Lexile Level range: 440L-770L
  • Hunger games series by: Suzanne Collins                                                             Lexile Level range: 600L-1030L
  • Eragon Series by: Christopher Paolini                                                                     Lexile Level range: 710L-1200L
  • Series of Unfortunate Events by: Lemony Snicket                                                Lexile Level range: 850L-1370L

Linking up with: Modest Mom Blog, What Joy Is Mine, Nourishing Joy, Moms The Word,
Titus 2 Tuesday, Wise Woman, Giving Up on PerfectTrueAim, Crystal&Co,
6

Happy Mothers Day

 It was a morning like no other.  The last 13 hours of my life had significantly changed more than I could have ever imagined.  Who I was had now been altered, changed, re-created even into a new version of me.
There is no going back. As my eyes slowly fluttered open I gazed upon the most beautiful face I had ever seen.  It was round, flushed and peppered with an auburn sort of peach fuzz. I forgot all the pain.  I forgot all the fear.  All there was now was to focus on this little piece of “us” sleeping softly in my husbands arms and how she had transformed me into “Mom”.
Surely that was the first moment that I felt like a mom, however I was blessed to relive that moment once again four years later. I received into my arms my glorious boy who was the spitting image of his father.  He taught me that I, as a mom had so much love to give. Unspeakable joy!  That’s the only way I can explain what this child brought to me.
With each birth I wanted to be the best mom I could.  I nursed ’til it hurt.  I cared for, swaddled and protected them with all I had. Who needs sleep anyway… As the years have gone by and they’ve grown so much, I continue to care and protect. I definitely sleep more and I had to lay off the swaddling.
These days I’ve been thinking about what I do as mom.  I sometimes have fallen into the trap of feeling guilty that I’m a stay at home mom when people ask me what I “do”.  You’re just a mom?  That sounds insulting and I’ll admit that it makes me feel like less of a person.  Like what I do isn’t valuable.
This week I was thinking about all the jobs I’ve had in my life and I prayed asking God to help me focus on what’s important.  I realized then and there that my “job” as a mom has been the one to provide me with the best reward.

It’s the job I have been most successful at.  That’s not to say that I am flawless at it, but rather that God has blessed me with beautiful, wonderful kids that have grown into truly, lovely souls.  That in it self is the most amazing blessing I could have ever hoped for.

I am cook.  I am chauffeur. I am nurse. I am teacher.
I am Mom…

In giving myself up to You Lord,

that’s where the magic happens.  

In You is where my value lies.

A while back I was one of many contributing authors to a book titled New Life Within.  In which I wrote the story of my pregnancies and the ups and downs of it.  I had drawn this image as an expression of an expectant mother and wanted to share it with you along with this poem I’ve written about the fears that enter your mind about all that comes with being a mom.  Rest assured that there are more blessings than you can possibly imagine.

As you wonder
CeliArt © 2013 celi.camacho@gmail.com
What it’s like
Writing futures
Making life
Doubts that fly
Need wings be clipped
For there is joy
There is hope
There is new life
Within

Happy Mothers Day

Modest Mondays, Proverbial Homemaker, Motivate and Rejuvenate MondaysA Mama’s Story, What Joy is Mine, The Life of Faith, Mom’s the Word, Titus 2sDay, Testimony Tuesday, #RaRaLinkUp, Purposeful FaithCornerstone Confessions, Blog HopTeaching What Is Good,Wise Woman, WholeHearted Wednesday, Women With Intention, Three Word WednesdayTellHisStoryCoffee for your Heart, Wednesday Prayer Girls, Word Filled WednesdayI Choose Joy Link UpThought Provoking Thursday Link Up, The Deliberate Mom, Growing in GraceA Field of Wild Flowers, Angela Parlin,While I Wait,  Arabahjoy Grace & Truth, Imparting GraceLittle Things ThursdayGraced SimplicityFellowship Fridays,  Friday Favorites, Friday Flash BlogMomfessionalsFaith Filled Friday, Fath and FellowshipGive Me Grace, Still Saturdays, Saturday SoireeThe Weekend BrewSunday StillnessA Group Look, Spiritual Sundays, Faith N Friends, DancingWithJesus, Renewed Daily

44

Engraved By Christ

Last week as I went on a walk with my son through our neighborhood I pulled out my camera and started taking pictures of everything that caught my eye.  Lots of beautiful trees, flowers and built up piles of fallen leaves. Oh how I love the natural beauty.

As I looked down at the sidewalk something in the cement caught my eye. they were so small that I almost missed them, but there they were. An imprint of a leaf. Several of them actually, leaves no longer there but the imprints remained. How long had they been there? Who knows, could be years.  All I knew was that these leaves had once fallen at this precise place leaving their mark, proving their existence, leaving a lasting impression in stone. So I took a picture of this imprint as it got me thinking of my own.

leaf imprint

What lasting impression will I leave behind?  Years from now will there even be an imprint? Will I have served my Lord well? What I do now, will it find its way into the future? My children’s future? Their children’s children future?

Not for rewards or for empty praises but rather to know I have guided them toward Christ and loved them so well that they will always remember. A love that has been etched into their hearts and burned into the very fabric of their lives.

“But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen”
2 Peter 3:18

To know that those moments I cried in prayer for God’s blessing on their lives came to be, even if while I am no longer here. That through whatever small kindness they have witnessed they have learned of Christ’s love in action.

“The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace”
Numbers 6:24-26

The things that we do matter. How we affect those around us will mean something if we do it with love.

But, the truth is…

We are flawed and the good we do is like filthy rags compared to God’s love.  So I pray… That despite my selfishness, short comings and sinful nature God will choose to use me in preparing a way for them.

“We are all infected and impure with sin. When we display our righteous deeds, they are nothing but filthy rags. Like autumn leaves, we wither and fall, and our sins sweep us away like the wind.”
Isaiah 64:6

Like a leaf etched into stone or names carved onto a tree, I hope to have helped my children carve the name of our Lord Jesus Christ onto their hearts that they might live a lifetime of joy serving our Father.

That the imprint I leave behind be not that of my own, but rather the one engraved by Christ.

How will you leave your imprint?

I’m happy to be linking up with the beautiful women at:

Modest Mondays, Proverbial Homemaker, Motivate and Rejuvenate MondaysA Mama’s Story, What Joy is Mine, The Life of Faith, Mom’s the Word, Titus 2sDay, Testimony Tuesday, #RaRaLinkUp, Purposeful FaithCornerstone Confessions, Blog HopTeaching What Is Good,Wise Woman, WholeHearted Wednesday, Women With Intention, Three Word WednesdayTellHisStoryCoffee for your Heart, Wednesday Prayer Girls, Word Filled WednesdayI Choose Joy Link UpThought Provoking Thursday Link Up, The Deliberate Mom, Growing in GraceA Field of Wild Flowers, Angela Parlin,While I Wait,  Arabahjoy Grace & Truth, Imparting GraceLittle Things ThursdayGraced SimplicityFellowship Fridays,  Friday Favorites, Friday Flash Blog, MomfessionalsFaith Filled Friday,Give Me Grace, The Weekend Brew,Sunday Stillness, A Group Look, Spiritual Sundays, Faith N Friends,

Thanks to Titus2Tuesdays

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4

You Are More

CeliArt © 2015 @Time2Refuel ™

Its 5:00 am, the day starts off as usual, trudge my way in a sleepy fog off to start the day.  Wake up kids, get breakfast on the table and those lunch boxes ready to go.  They finally get dressed and show up in the kitchen bleary-eyed, but ready to eat.  The morning starts slow but the quiet brings peace that helps conversation flow.

Though daylight has not reached us we’re on our way to the bus stop as my daughter tells me how she’s worried about her grades or that she doesn’t feel smart enough sometimes.  Asks if I think she’s a good writer or if she’s just fooling herself into thinking she can be one someday.  Her eyes upon me wondering, waiting for encouragement.  She cares what I think.  My child needs me. So I tell her the truth.

I don’t say this just because she is my daughter or solely out of love when I say the certainty of her talent is clear. I point out the beauty in the words she pens, the emotion she invokes and how though difficult a feat, she rises to it. I have no doubt she will one day be that writer she aspires to.  She will do great things and she knows I’m her biggest fan.

Next I drive my son to school. At times these drives can be silent when sleepiness is hard to fight.  But today my son had something on his mind.  He blurted out these words, “I know I’m not normal”.  As you can imagine my mind raced trying to process what he meant.  Quickly worried and even briefly blamed myself.  “Why would you say that?” is what came out of my mouth.  What he said next was nothing I had expected to hear.

“I’m not like other kids.  The other boys think all girls are the same, but I know that’s not true.  They’re all different and special in their own way. I think it’s because you homeschooled me Mom.  And I’m glad for that because I learned from being around you and my sister all the time. I know that’s what God wants me to do”.

I thanked him for telling me that but I have to tell you that he has no idea how wonderful that was to hear.

As a mom you work so hard to do everything you can for your children.  You sacrifice and love unconditionally praying that you won’t mess them up and that they’ll grow up to be beautiful human beings. These are the moments, unexpected conversations of the heart that are like payment in full.

My kids know that I love them but cannot even fathom the amount of love I have for them.  These are the moments I want to remember when I feel like I’m not enough.  When I feel overwhelmed and under-appreciated I need to recall these moments, these words, and their love.

I know that down the line I’ll still make mistakes and doubt myself along the way but I’m thankful for God’s reminders. Letting me know that I don’t have to be perfect and in the scheme of things all is well. God has blessed me with an amazing family to nurture and I am privileged to be loved by them.

Proverbs 31:25-28

25 Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come.
26 She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.27 She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.28 Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her.

I encourage you today to take a moment and know that you are loved.  That there is more to being a mom than preparing lunches, making beds or driving your kids around. That all you do is not in vain, all you are is infinitely more important to your family than any mistake you have ever made.  You are more and love covers all.

#Time2Refuel

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2

Careful Little Eyes…

CeliArt © 2015 @Time2Refuel™

It’s so heart breaking to watch our kids forcibly lose pieces of their innocence before they’re ready.  From magazines, T.V. shows, movies and music, they all seem to be pushing the limits.  Are there even limits anymore?  Kid shows are all about relationship drama these days.  Why are these 11 y.o. even dating?

The music that’s played at school dances for kids in elementary and middle school are full of foul language.  I asked my son what songs were played at the last dance he attended and most of the songs mentioned had foul language.  That is totally inappropriate!  He followed up by saying “they bleep out the bad words in the song but the kids just keep singing and blurt out the words anyways”.  This is what they learn from today’s music. Why is this acceptable?

A while back we purchased some concert tickets and as a thank you gift were given some free subscriptions to various magazines. Sports Illustrated was one of them.  When the magazines arrived my son would normally love reading the articles about the players or events.  Until the day the swimsuit edition arrived. I was shocked to see my son holding the magazine. He brought it to me and said that he didn’t think he should be looking at that.I was horrified to see these basically pornographic images right here in my home.  I was so angry and immediately threw it in the trash.  It’s not about being a prude or self-righteous.  It’s about self-respect.  It’s about honor.

Coincidentally, today I just happened to come across a blog post from Nitty Gritty Love regarding a similar situation, but from the view-point of an 11 y.o. boy and I wanted to share it with you.

AN 11-YEAR-OLD BOY’S OPEN LETTER TO SPORTS ILLUSTRATED

– See more at: http://www.nittygrittylove.com/an-11-year-old-boys-open-letter-to-sports-illustrated/#sthash.6crpGpVQ.dpuf

An 11-Year-Old Boy’s Open Letter to Sports Illustrated

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Romans 12:2

So what are your thoughts on this?

#Time2Refuel

http://christianmommyblogger.com/ff62_mission/