December 31, 2015

"Praying for Boys" ~ End of the Month Wrap-Up

"In our home, we say we're sorry if the result of our behavior was an accident.  When my oldest son knocks my youngest on the floor trying to get to Daddy when he gets home, he can be sorry because it was an accident.

The need for forgiveness occurs when a child (or an adult, for that matter) has deliberately sinned against another.

When little Johnny hits his younger brother out of anger because younger brother won't share, he has sinned.  When little brother steals little Johnny's toy right from his hands, he has sinned.

(Please notice: I said 'steal.'  It's important to think of our children's behaviors--and our own--in terms of biblical language.  Stealing is breaking one of the Ten Commandments and produces a little sinner in need of salvation.  Using biblical lingo helps keep the Bible relevant and helps us to see our sin in its true light.)

It is sin to choose one's own desire in spite of the way it affects or hurts someone else, and sin requires repentance, forgiveness, and restoration.  Maybe it sounds a little like this: 'Big brother, will you forgive me for hitting you? I was choosing to care more about that toy than I was your feelings or safety.'

Often it's the simplest distinctions that have a profound effect on the way we understand the world.  Asking for forgiveness is humbling because we have to admit a wrongdoing and take responsibility for the sin in our hearts.

What a beautiful lesson for the men we're raising to learn.

Let's help them know how, when, and why to ask for forgiveness, and pray God develops repentant hearts and spirits within them."

-Brooke McGlothlin-

" So also my heavenly Father will do to every one of you, 
if you do not forgive your brother from your heart."

Matthew 18:35

December 15, 2015

"Praying for Boys": Mid-Month Discussion Question from Brooke McGlothlin

"Many studies show that withholding forgiveness affects us not only spiritually but also physically.  Has forgiveness been a stumbling block in your life?"


"What is your understanding of forgiveness?
Have you tried to teach your children the difference between asking for forgiveness and offering an apology?"

December 1, 2015

"Praying for Boys" ~ Month 20/21

"And Peter said to them,
'Repent and be baptized every one of you
in the name of Jesus Christ
for the forgiveness of your sins,
and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit'."
Acts 2:38

November 30, 2015

"Praying for Boys" ~ End of the Month Wrap-Up

"So much of the Christian life is a choice.

Every day (multiple times a day) we have the opportunity to choose God or ourselves, choose to say 'yes' to God or 'yes' to ourselves, choose to do what's right in the eyes of God or what's right in our own eyes.

Anger is a perfect example.

You can feel it coming, can't you?
Anger is an almost total out of body experience.

Muscles get tight.
Temples throb.
Jaws clench, and explosion feels imminent, 
wooing us into believing we have no choice but to react.

But it's not true.

We almost always have a choice when it comes to anger 
(or reacting to any other emotion, for that matter).

We can choose to embrace it and sin, 
or we can put it aside and instead choose kindness, 
self-control, compassion, and love.


You see, I've allowed my emotions to control me too many times.  I can tell when I'm nearing the danger zone, or as I like to call it, the downward spiral of emotions.  For a long time, though, I didn't really care.  If I wanted to get angry, I got angry, and if anyone tried to tell me I didn't have a right to get angry, it made me even angrier.

I thought I had a right to feel any way I wanted to, 
whether my feelings were accurate or not, 
simply because they were my feelings.


I've learned these last few years that this way of thinking is not only unbiblical but also highly destructive.

What I can see with my eyes and feel with my heart isn't always the truth.  
In fact, if I'm feeling out of control, 
I've probably embraced the lie that what I want is more important than glorifying God in every situation of life.

God gave us our emotions as a barometer--
something to alert us that there might be something off in our surroundings or in our hearts--
but He didn't give them to us to rule our lives, 
or dictate our behavior.

He wants to rule our lives.

And when we're in Christ, we already possess the power to overcome.  
We just have to choose it.


When someone hurts me, I react out of the need to protect myself, forgetting that God has told me in His Word that He is my protector, my defender, my shield.

The truth is what God says in His Word,
no matter what my feelings tell me.

And as a Christian--
one who has given her life to Christ 
and committed to following Him--
I have the power to choose the truth over my emotions."

-Brooke McGlothlin-
"Leave your simple ways, and live,
and walk in the way of insight."

Proverbs 9:6

November 20, 2015

Favorite Fall Feast

(My oh-so-talented, oh-so-lovely Sister-in-Law)

Ever since Marta made this dish for me back in December of 2012,
I have been obsessed with it and I make it multiple times every fall.
Fall is the best time to make it because of the produce that goes into it,
but it is also a great December dish since it involves pasta AND syrup...
so Buddy the Elf would approve :)
Start with 2-3 delicata squash.
Halve and scoop out the "guts".
Cut into half-circles.
Get a hearty portion of butter heated up in a pot.
(You can use olive oil if you'd rather not use butter... but i'm a Wisconsin girl... so I use butter, duh!)
Toss the squash in the butter...
...then let them steam until they are soft enough to pierce with a fork.
(I toss them every couple minutes while they are steaming.)

Set the squash aside once they are done, and add more butter :) to the pan.
Julienne a red pepper, and start sauteing.
Slice up an onion...
...pretty sure I followed this onion truck down the road near Hermiston while I was on the road trip to Portland with the boys in October... anyway...
add the sliced onion to the saute pan with the red peppers.
"Low and Slow" is my motto when it comes to cooking...
so while those peppers and onions are sauteing lowly and slowly,
start browning some maple breakfast sausage.
While all that is going on, rinse some kale and break it into bite size pieces.
 Once the peppers and onions are nice and soft and juicy, add about 1/3 cup maple syrup, and a tablespoon of crushed rosemary.
 (I didn't include a picture of the kind of "maple syrup" I used because I don't want you to see what I actually used... as I said, i'm a Wisconsin girl... I would prefer real maple syrup, that's all I can say!)

Break the breakfast sausage into small pieces and throw into the pot. Stir.
 Put the kale on top of the veggie/sausage/syrup combination.
 I like a lot of kale, but you can use however much you are comfortable with.
 While that is steaming, cook some angel hair pasta.
 Once the kale is tender, stir the ingredients that are in the pot, and put on top of the pasta.
 Since the squash has been cooling, I reheat it in the microwave really quick, then place as much squash as you desire on top of the dish.

Bon Appetit!

November 15, 2015

"Praying for Boys": Mid-Month Discussion Question from Brooke McGlothlin

"Take a moment to revisit your own struggles with anger.  Do you find it more difficult to keep your emotions under control in particular situations, such as when you're stressed?

Have you experienced times when you did not care if your emotions were under control?

Have you ever considered that your emotions could be wrong, or that they could lead you in the wrong direction, away from the truth of God's Word?"

November 4, 2015

Our First Year Trick-or-Treating!

Batman (Bennett) ready to go!
Sawyer was taking a late nap, so Bennett and Daddy went over to the neighbors (who were leaving at 6 so we had to get there before then!)... so Sawyer missed out on this first stop.
Our American Gothic (awesome!) neighbors :) :) :)

Superman (Sawyer) finally up from his nap and out on the town!
Figuring this out together!

This house was kinda scary, we were going to skip it but Bennett was mesmerized and asked to go to it.  
They weren't sure what to think about it, but it didn't scare them!  
A different scarier house did that job later.... unfortunately :(

Our only family picture of the night... asked a random old man at one of the houses we trick-or-treated at to take it for us... blurry and nowhere near centered, but he was a sweet old man! :)

"Oofta this trick-or-treating thing is exhausting!"

The traditional post-trick-or-treating candy inspection and trade session.

 And lastly, some pictures of my costume for the costume contest at the hospital where I work :)
 Was going for Elphaba from "Wicked"

November 1, 2015

"Praying for Boys" ~ Month 19/21

"Be not quick in your spirit to become angry,
for anger lodges in the bosom of fools."
Ecclesiastes 7:9

October 31, 2015

"Praying for Boys" ~ End of the Month Wrap-Up

If you have an hour to sit down at your computer and listen to this, here is a link for an awesome Francis Chan sermon from April of this year.  It doesn't have a title about "self control", but I found that the message overall was heavy on self control.  Also has a great message about marriage embedded in the middle!
"I have set before you life and death,
blessing and curse.
Therefore choose life
that you and your offspring may live,
loving the Lord your God,
obeying his voice and holding fast to him,
for He is your life and length of days."

Deuteronomy 31:13