I have never been one to meal prep. I literally stunk at it for the better part of... my LIFE! Until now that is. I have found a secret that all mothers will not just appreciate but will LOVE. It all stated with a reoccurring grocery bill, a bill that was pushing $300 every week!!! Gulp and pass out. Now this blog with be a little different for each one reading it. It all depends on your size family, but the results will be the same. Meal prepping this way will not only save you BIG bucks but it will also save you stress, anxiety, worry, frustration and lets be honest; what mother doesn't need less of those things in her life.
See, we are a growing family of five. Two ladies and three men. I say men because that is how my boys appetites will be here very shortly. Before we had kids I remember my husband and my budget was $50 a week. Ahhh! It was awesome, but then came the babies which weren't bad until they started eating solid food. From there it was a down hill spiral. But NOT ANYMORE!!! Below I am going to list the simple step you need to take to make your life easier and your bank account heavier.
Breakfast - same thing for the week
Lunch - same thing for the week
Dinner - same thing for the week
CHANGE MEALS & REPEAT!!!
That Was It And It Is Working!!!!
Now let me go into detail on this meal plan. Every week I pick a breakfast meal for the kids. This week is frozen waffles, mandarin oranges and chocolate milk (I have actually started letting the kids choose on some weeks which I'll explain later). Lunch is mac-and-cheese, green beans and bananas. Last for dinner is chili (a tradition for Halloween). So every day from Sunday until Saturday the family eats the same thing (for the most part. The hubs and I would be ... not healthy if all we ate was the mac-and-cheese, more on that later as well) and then we start over with something new the following week.
My Kids Wont Eat The Same Thing Every Day
WRONG, WRONG, WRONG!!! Yes, there will be an adjustment period. I remember Leonidas choosing to go to bed instead of eating the same thing he didn't like again. However, now that they know this is their option they have all started eating what is served to them.
I Can't Eat What My Kids Eat
No problem momma. Simply use the same strategy on yourself. Lunch for my husband and I tend to be the hardest so I simply meal prep salads for us for the week. Salads are so diverse you can totally change them completely every week. Or, do something else that is better suited to your needs, just stick to the same routine.
What Will I Gain From This?
1. Forget rotten food and wasted money: Before this routine I would TRY to meal plan each day and each meal. I was literally running a restaurant for my kids. By mid week I was so exhausted that I would forget about the meal planning and order take out and the food would be forgotten. Eventually the food would go bad and I would throw unopened this and unopened that away.
2. Learning To Eat Leftovers: So my kids (and if I am being honest me too) hated left overs. They wanted something fresh and new every meal so left over meals would go bad and ... go into the trash. Now it is the norm for my kids and they eat it!!! I couldn't believe it, but it was true. By the end of the week left overs were gone, the fridge looked sparse, no wasted food!!!
3. Stress level dropped: Meal planning this way has drastically dropped my stress levels because I am only needing to plan for three meals (roughly, if I need something different it is 4). Grocery shopping is FAST! I use instacart which lowers my stress even less. Highly recommend the delivery or at least curb side pick up despite the slight up charge. Last is the stress relief of just popping dinner back in the oven to warm up or turning the crock pot back on, when that's done I am free to have down time or do whatever.
4. Budget Friendly (SERIOUSLY FRIENDLY): So remember I told you our average grocery bill was about $300 a week. With the new plan, and seeing the total in my cart BEFORE checking out (allows you to take off un-needed items if you are over budget) we have dropped our grocery bill down to $130-$150 a week. That is a HUGE difference. More money and less waste.
Last Minute Tips
1. When your children have gotten settled into this routine and accept it, let them help. Let them pick out one meal for the week (within reason); let them help cook it (my kids actually like whatever is made more if THEY help make it).
2. Don't go overboard!!! So our week looks like this, Sunday is the fresh meal of the week. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, (+\- Saturday depending on if grandparents invite us over) are the days we do the planned meal as a left over. Wednesday we are out late because of gymnastics so we eat out as a family. There is money for that (still try to eat at restaurants that offer deals for kids) now that our grocery bill is so much lower. Friday is our family fun night so we do whatever, eat out, fruity pebbles, frozen pizza, whatever (but don't make it another big dinner, something quick and fun!!!)
3. I told you about instcart and for our family it is the best fit, despite the small up charge (I just love not GOING to the store, less compulsive buying!!!); but for kicks and giggles I decided to give ALDI a try. You know, just to see. My total for the entire week of food was ... $60!!!!!!!!!!! If you can refrain from compulsive buying and stick to your list you WILL save more money going to the store yourself.
I hope you enjoyed this fun, off my normal, blog post. I would love for you to try this and get back with me on how you liked it!! You can do that by clicking any of the links below and leaving a comment. If you have a question about it feel free to ask and I'll get back to you. As mothers we shouldn't be so stressed over food and feeding everyone. It should be quick and easy so we can get back to what is really important. Living life with our families.
It has been the hardest few months of my life. I never knew the negative impact that social media could have on my naivety. Then to add insult to injury, being a mom who couldn't get help answering her questions from those who said they cared; yet without those questions answered she felt like she was lying to her children every day. But that is what happened and it has been the hardest journey to push on through.
By now you are wanting to know what possibly could I be talking about and why would it make me lose my faith? It all started when I was browsing through my twitter feed. I rarely do this, as I try to only be on social media to promote my blog, and to read about happy things. Seeing as there isn't much of that these days, more insult added to injury, I am just not on Twitter that much. But there I was scrolling down. A tweet came up, it was a tweet about a verse in the Bible not being in any Bible newer than the New King James version. Well naturally I had to see this for myself. Sure enough, the number for the verse was there in my NIV but not the verse that went with it.
My logic and reason started spiraling from that point on. First, I was naive about it and angry. I wanted to know why such context was removed from the Holy Bible (how can it be holy if it is being changed?). I had good willed friends and even a stranger point this upset mother to an article as to why this was happening. Unfortunately, the article paved the way for more questions. The article went on to say that it was doing this in newer Bible's to try and only put in original text and translations, something the New King James version and older failed. Apparently they had added to the so called Holy Bible. https://www.biblica.com/resources/bible-faqs/why-does-the-niv-bible-omit-or-have-missing-verses/ ( there are more then one of these links to confirm the reasoning).
This one seed of realization was beginning to eat away at my faith. The way that I saw it was, if the Bible could be altered by "so and so" because of "this and that" then ultimately the Bible is a very long story of telephone. For those moms that don't know this game, you basically say something in someone's ear and then they turn to the next person and say what they heard and so on and so on. By the time the last person says what the original person stated it is completely different. So, now doubt had begun to creep into my soul. If I couldn't believe every word of the Bible as true then what was true? And further more, it could now make it plausible (for the naive) to question whether God existed at all!!! Yep, there it is, I said it AND I meant it!! The doubt, logic and reason grew so strong that for about a month I doubted the existence of God Himself.
I know this sounds crazy after what I experienced at my Rachel's Vineyard retreat!!! And I HATED myself for it.
How could I believe what I experienced about my daughter, Adara and her brother, but doubt God's existence? Things were getting progressively worse to the point I was having a hard time praying with my kids at night because I felt I was lying to them. I felt like I was lying to them!!! Depression set in and so I pulled out the mask of "everything is okay" for my children. Again, the help I was needing and answers to questions that were making be LOSE my faith never came. I waited with silence from those who are suppose to help with this very thing. Then God put a memory in my head... (thank goodness someone cared enough for this poor mom). I do believe that despite my doubt, it was my concern for my children's eternal souls (you know, just in case, lol) and my continuing to read the Bible and pray (though it felt fake and empty for the first time in 36 years) were what saved me and opened my eyes.
Years ago, when my faith was strong but I was having the typical questions regarding God's sovereignty and why He allows bad things to happen, my sister gave me a book to read. I Don't Have Enough Faith To Be An Atheist is the name of the book. This book is not like any other Christian book you will ever read. What kind of book is it? It is a hard book to read. It is a hard book to comprehend. It is a book all about SCIENCE! In this book the references to the Bible are few. One quote in the book got my attention (I had to wait until chapter 3). Who did God send me to help me with my doubt? Albert Einstein, who stated "Science WITHOUT religion is lame; religion WITHOUT science is BLIND." Read that again if you have to mommy. It means we NEED to use science to back up our faith because if our truth only comes from the Bible (that can be changed) then what will we do when our children question the faith? We need to have more. This book will give you that. In correlation with the book A Case For Faith you will not risk the chance of doubt eating at your faith. You will lose the lenses of naivety and see the TRUTH through more then blind faith.
In the end, thanks to God, I have my faith restored and am a WISER mom going forth for my children.
Today was the first time I was able to pray and read the Bible and feel somewhat connected to Him in several months. My sister recently told me something that really stuck with me.
A plant that lives in doors and cared for can't hold up to the wind. So now and then the caretaker will stick the plant outside in the wind for a little while to strengthen its weak stem... before returning it inside.
Moms, most of us are the same way. God cares for us inside the comfort of the norm, but to keep us strong enough to weather the storms, He will put us out of the comfort zone now and then. What an awesome God we serve! God knew that I needed more then blind faith to shoot my children out into the world someday with their faith strong. So He stuck me outside and let the wind blow me over but never let it fully break me; and now He is starting to return me safely to where He had me and I will be stronger now. When my children questions things in the Bible I am going to have the wisdom to answer back more then just "God's ways are not our ways".
As mothers we can sometimes think we have all the answers, but in truth we are still just children of God with a lot of learning left to do.
2 Peter 1:5-8 For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith, goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ ~
Last night as I lay in my bed pondering what to write about and my thoughts racing, I started thinking about the house. I started thinking about the mess it was in. As the images of each room started to fill my head and make my anxiety rise I thought about what part of the mess was NOT my kids. I am not going to lie, part of it was mine. After picking up day in and day out of other peoples things I tend to get burned out and throw my hands up in the air and give up. But that is a small part. Then there is my husband. As I thought about his part in this mess I started thinking to myself about those particular messes.
See I know that my kids are growing up and will one day be out the door and I wont be cleaning up after them anymore. But, then there is my awesome husband whose mess I will continue to pick up until one of us is 6' deep. (Insert the mom's laugh from that 70's Show here). I will be honest, I started thinking about those things I would not have to deal with anymore if he left first. I wouldn't have to worry about the white socks that I find in the strangest places; the "worn once but not dirty" clothes that lie next to the bed and just accumulate would be gone; the packed suitcase from a trip this is still on the floor months after his return would never haunt my feet at night again (because it never fails if I have to go to the bathroom I will always hit it with my foot!). The list could go on and on! Facial hair after I clean the bathroom, dirty garage (to be fair, the kids are an equal part in that mess), dishes in the sink despite the dishwasher being empty. Pondering these things in the middle of the night would make any wife want to role over and punch her sleeping husband's arm.
Then I remembered my husband was asleep in with one of our boys because he had had a rough day and wanted his daddy. At that point new thoughts started coming to my mind. A huge thought was the reason I was currently awake with a mind racing...
1. Sleeping Alone
Now that I have been married for over 10 years I am so used to having him by my side. He is my comfort when I sleep (Because I am 36 and still afraid of the dark. Don't judge me. LOL). Not having him next to me at night leaves me with discomfort, it feels wrong not to have his strong body next to mine. And in the winter when I am freezing? Heck no! I love having him in bed with me. I have such a peace knowing he is right there if I need him. Without him I would probably die of sleep deprivation (there are no essential oils strong enough out there to change that). Ha!
2. Financial Responsibility
We have been blessed over the year with his career that I was able to retire after our daughter was born. I currently am homeschooling our three children as well as running this household. The thought of having to take on a full time job to keep us afloat if he wasn't here is a daunting thought. Homeschooling would probably have to go and that would crush both the kids and me. As the STRESS of it all being on my shoulders? Yikes!!!! Thank goodness, my husband sacrifices 80% of his year (that includes 6 hours a night for sleeping to recover and do it again mind you) to providing for us. Even right now, when it is very hard for him to find the motivation to go to work because the possibility of an upcoming sale of the company. He still gets up and takes that full weight onto his shoulders. Without him I would have to make that same sacrifice and if you couldn't tell yet, I am kind of selfish in these areas and DON'T want to do that.
3. I Would Have To Kill...Scorpions
Yep! That's right. If he wasn't here I would not only have to protect our home from thieves but also scorpions. Insert "barffing" emoji right here. I HATE HATE HATE scorpions, we have had 4 in the house this year and he has rescued me from all of them. Which also leads into the fact I would have to treat and spray the house for bugs! Lord knows I wouldn't make enough to hire someone to do it (Because that money is so much better used at Chick-fil-a to buy their new mac and cheese. Ha!). Without him the sole protection of our home would fall to me, whether it be human, natural disaster, or creepy crawlies.
4. I'd Have No Best Friend
Lance is my best friend in every way. He is my lover, he is my frustration, he is my comic relief (despite me almost killing that part of him when we were first dating), he is my annoyance, he is the one I do it all with, and the one I do non of it with. I would be alone without him. Yes, I would have my children and friends and family, but it would not be the same. My children would grow and move on with their lives, stopping by here and there. My family would do the same and friends can be in and out in a matter of weeks. Without him I would be lonely.
So why on a mommy blog page did a write about this? Well for starters, without my husband I wouldn't be a mommy. LOL. But also, because I realized (and deep down I already knew) that I love my life with my husband. He is a strong (yeah, I mean physically, sizzle), funny, handsome (yeah baby!), caring, loving, supportive, and helpful husband. Sure, he can drive me crazy sometimes, but so do my children, my family, my friends, heck even myself at times!
I remember a story a long time ago of a group of old ladies sitting on a porch having tea. One of the ladies is talking about her husband going inside her house tracking some dirt onto the floor from his boots. The other ladies scoff and gripe about how they would never let their husband get away with that. The owner sadly looks down at her tea and tells them how that used to be with her husband and how he had passed away and she would do anything to have him walk through her door again with dirt on his boots.
Remember how I told you I was a selfish person at times? Well here is the proof. I hope and pray that I die first. I don't want to live on this earth without my protector, comedic relief, financial provider, and best friend right there with me. To some of you, you may be scoffing and thinking that I don't know what I am missing. Or that I have no independence. I would tell you, you are wrong. I worked at a prestigious veterinary oncology facility as their lead nurse before I retired. I owned my own home and car and paid all my own bills. I killed all my own home intruders (only bugs I promise). I had dogs that slept in my bed with me. But I was still lonely! So I am telling you, I don't EVER want to go back to that spot in my life. It was good while I had it but being with my husband is SOOOO much better. I love him and cherish him, even when I find a pair of his socks on the fireplace mantle (True story). He is my best friend and I don't want to do a single day of life without him. So God, I'll go first if you don't mind (unless you want to let us go together, perfectly fine with that too. Ha!)
Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other one up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken ~
I watch as you open your suitcase and start placing things inside. So tenderly you fold everything so they are just right as you lay them down. You have a calm and subtle smile on your face as you look at a picture in a simple frame. But the memory of that picture is a strong one, one you'll remember forever. Despite your bag being full you gently lay the picture under a layer of clothing. It will be needed for this trip, it will give strength when strength waivers.
As I continue to watch you, you peacefully go through your house tidying up to make sure there is no mess left behind. The last of the drying dishes you put away in the cabinet. Quietly you go through the whole house making sure to shut off all the lights. Yes, you are very sure everything is in order, leave things better then you found them. That is what you were taught.
I keep asking you if you have to take this trip. Why now? Why can't you wait a little longer? Tears well up in my eyes as I look at you, confused and hurt. This doesn't seem right, you shouldn't be going so far away. You gently kiss the top of my head where grey hair has replaced the blond. Years of love poured out and given to those I cherished most. You tell me you will miss me but how excited you are to take this trip. You go on and tell me that you have been waiting and that you know I wanted to take this trip first, but life is never predictable. You tell me everything is going to be okay and then you turn and start walking away.
I call after you that you forgot your suitcase. You look over your shoulder with the childlike grin you used to give me when you were young and tell me it was never meant to go with you. I look down at the suitcase puzzled by the response, when I look up you are gone. I look up and down the street but you are nowhere in sight. I look down again and slowly unzip the suitcase.
Inside I see the clothes you packed. Your suit from your wedding, your costume from a play in college, your football jersey from high school, your baby blanket from the day I brought you home. I smell in the blanket deeply and my eye catches the picture you packed. I pull it out and see myself holding you right after you were born.
I weep like a child, there in the street, oblivious to who is watching. My soul aches for you to be there when I look back up. My heart is breaking. It wasn't mean to be like this, I was the one who was to take the trip first. But as I sit rocking, holding what's left of your presence, a gentle peace washes over me. As hard as this will be I have peace in where you went. I have peace in knowing it wont be forever. I have peace in knowing God needed you home first...
As mothers there is no greater fear then the thought of God calling our children home before us. It haunts our dreams, it causes endless gray hairs on our heads, and no matter how old our children get that fear persists. That has now become the reality my grandparents are facing with their youngest son, my uncle. Most families are probably not that close, or there have been several members that have gone on home to heaven already, or some other example.
Well let me tell you about my family. We ARE close! We don't all live in the same town or even the same state, but we are close non the less. In fact I am almost 40 years old and other then one grandfather when I was 20 I have not lost a single family member. I am so grateful for that, but it scares me too. I know that the odds are starting to pack up against me and loved ones will be heading to their forever home soon. But I was still not ready to accept that even when I heard it from my dad's lips.
I will never forget where I was. Sitting watching my son practice at his gymnastic's facility I heard my phone ring. I never handle anything well when my dad is choking up, and this was no exception. "Your uncle Monte... your uncle Monte has... has pancreatic cancer." The anguish in my dad's voice at the news of his baby brother was heart breaking. This uncle, my uncle Monte is the comic relief in our family. He always has been. He was always the one growing up that would entertain us with songs or silly voices or sledding or tag. If there was fun going on at my grandparent's house it was my uncle's doing. He is the goof ball of the family and all his nieces and nephews love him for it.
My uncle got his family later in life then most. But they are an amazing family! They have been through so much and have put God in the heart of every decision, every obstacle that came their way. He wife Missy is sweet and caring and adores him. I have never seen my uncle happier then I have since the day he married her. They share a special bond that few other couples know. As a blended family they never faltered with their faith in God. All family's have ups and downs to go through, but my uncle and his wife tackled them together as a team. She gives him such life! My favorite picture below is the one to the right. Can you see the look on my aunt's face and I can tell my uncle has the same smile on his face as she does. United as one, lovers, with God at their core.
My uncle has three older siblings. They are all close but have not always gotten along. It is important as mothers to remember that no matter how hard we try, our children are going to have issues with each other. These issues will usually not be resolved with us in their face's telling them to work it out. In the later years our best tool for these relationship is to pray for them. My uncles and aunts I have watched over the years connect and then disconnect. I have seen pretty much every behavior happen in their adult years as I have in my children's young ages. Siblings will always be siblings. As mothers it is important to instill in them the importance of the bond that is their relationship; that way there is always someone to fall on in tears, rejoice with in good times, and every now and then diagree (strongly).
At our core, we are family; and when one member is going through something we all are. We go through it together and support and help each other, because that is what family does. When something like a new baby is born, we rejoice. When a loved one is diagnosed with cancer, we cry. There is nothing weak about it, it is in these times our family's strength truly shines through.
The last thing I will tell you about my uncle, before I tell you why this post is important to you, is his love for his daughter. He is a hero to her. Whether she sees it yet or not, he is. I have watched him love her, be firm with her, and hold her when she is sad. He has been there for her even when at times life made it hard. He cherishes her, a gift from God, for him. If every dad could be so present for his daughter what a wonderful world it would be.
So by now you are probably wondering how this pertains to you. As mothers we must remember that even as our children grow we still need to cherish any time they will spare for us. Even when they marry and move on to start a new branch of the family's legacy we need to still be there. They will want and need to ask for advice, and we need to share our wisdom with them. When they have their children, we need to be there. We need to help them when they ask for help babysitting; or if we know they are stressed, invite them over for dinner so they don't have to cook. If we live far away then we need to travel while our bodies still allow us to. As mothers we need to keep the family united as best we can, even when our children are adults and don't agree with each other's political views or how they raise their children. Pray for them, with the hopes that once you are gone, they will go on loving each other and supporting each other. And heaven forbid, if God should call one of our children home before us, we have so many happy memories made that when the devil tries to slither in feelings of guilt or regret, we can pull up one of those beautiful memories to fall back on.
I don't know what the future holds for my uncle Monte. I don't know when God will call him home; I am praying expectantly that he will be so old that he drives a little buggy around so wildly he gets glares from young people he almost runs over (because that would be my uncle). What I do know is this. My uncle is going to heaven someday, and if that is sooner, then heaven is preparing an awesome celebration for him! But for the rest of us, it will hurt. For my gandparents, I can not imagine the pain, but the rest of us will be there to be a shoulder for them to cry on. It isn't the people leaving for this trip that it's sad for; (For my uncle would be partying it up with his famous "You're old, you're old, you're old" song in heaven) it's knowing we can't see them again on this earth, and that is the most painful part about death. So mothers, please remember, in the end we are all packing for this ultimate trip with a suitcase full of memories that will not go with us. Instead it will be tenderly left behind to help in comforting those we loved.
Pslam 73:26 My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever ~
DEDICATED TO MY AWESOME UNCLE MONTE WHO IS FIGHTING CANCER WITH THE STRENGTH OF GOD AND THE HUMOR THAT IS PART OF HIS LOVING CHARACTER
I am asking for prayers from anyone who reads this for my family and my uncle. Prayers that my uncle receives complete healing and that God plans on letting him grow really, really, old. Prayers that my family be covered in peace and grow even stronger in our relationships with each other. Thank you.
Strategy 10: Attacking Your Relationship With Your Children (Don't Let The Devil Steal Your Motherhood)
If I were your enemy, I'd work to create division between you and your children. I would seek to dissolve any potential your children and you could make uniting against me. I would scheme to make you operate individually, blinding you and your children from the truth of how much you need each other. Strength in family and unity of purpose… I would not allow things like these to go unchecked ~
Lord have mercy! God never fails to have me walk through the fire I am talking about. This finale post of "Don't Let The Devil Steal Your Motherhood" fits right into life right now. We currently are not having the attack, but I fear it is brewing and gearing up depending on a large decision that needs to be made.
Last week, Leonidas, my middle child, the one always placed on the back burner, sweet and STRONG son, was invited to join the competitive team for his gymnastics. There is a testing period; a test of strength and a test of endurance, four test total. He has passed 3/4 above average. Here is my dilemma, to commit to this path for him would mean extreme sacrifices for everyone else in the family. Ten hours of practice a week, eight state competitions all over Florida, in a nutshell this road would take up 1/7 of our year. And it is an every year commitment. The cost is staggering in itself, but the time is the more pressing concern. This week the other two have already been voicing objections to having to "go and be bored" at his classes. If you haven't noticed this is a Thursday post because I couldn't get to my blog yesterday, it has already begun changing the family dynamics and routines.
I am afraid of this commitment. I am afraid this will hurt our family, but I am afraid I am being selfish to hold my little Grunt back for an amazing opportunity... So this brings us to today's blog, and the already present attacks the devil makes against our relationships with our children.
Did this scare you? IT SHOULD!!! Satan has no plans for you to love let alone speak to your children in the end. He is here for one purpose in your calling of motherhood. One purpose for your children and you… to lie, destroy and kill ANYTHING and EVERYTHING that pulls you
and your children to Jesus and to each other. And that is seriously scary stuff. The gospel we believe in was and is meant to be shared TOGETHER, both the giving and receiving of grace, inspiring each of us to strive for a relationship with our children that shines outwards to others and draws them in. So lets fight back!
Step 1: Pray WITH Your Children
We have plenty of other strategies that we can pray on our own time. But Satan is after our relationship with our children NOW. Get them in on the fight! Start disciplining them in how to fight back. There is no time to wait. Pray with them about anything and everything. Let them speak from their hearts to our Father even if their prayers are, lets face it, sometimes petty. You can be sure, our Father is smiling in love for their words to Him. Let them also hear our prayers. That is how, as they age they will learn how powerful we can be with God always there.
Philippians 2:2-4 - Make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose. Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely
look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.
Step 2: Communicate WITH Your Children
"Sticks and stone may break my bones, but words will never hurt me." I DON'T THINK SO!!! Words do hurt. If they didn't then the statistics for suicide, divorce, etc would be way lower. A friend of mine had her nephew try to hang himself at the age of 9 because of words. Words can and do hurt. It is the devil's biggest weapon against us. Not only can he influence people to say hurtful things, but even if what they say isn't hurtful; he can manipulate the receiver into thinking they heard something entirely different. So use his own weapon against him, talk with your children. When something they say is hurtful talk to them about it. Try to find out if the words they are using match the way they are feeling. If they do seek the Bible for guidance on how to help them resolve those feelings. If we do this then they will be open with us when we have said or done something to hurt them.
Hebrews 10:24-25 - Let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another and all the more as you see the day drawing near.
Step 3: Grow YOUR Army
We want to have Satan scared. We want to have his tools against us useless. Because if we can have peace in a Christlike relationship with our children, then we are creating witnesses. Now we are moving as one body, with one purpose. Now we have strength in numbers. Our children, like us, were born to be warriors. Each one has a very strategic purpose that God needs them to fulfill. We need to be their
commanders. They need to have such a strong relationship with us that when the devil tries to attack they know God and their mothers are right there to back them up. Teach them now! Teach them how to fight Satan right this minute.
Psalm 18:32-34 - The God who equipped me with strength and made my way blameless. He made my feet like the feet of a deer and set me secure on the heights. He trains my hands for war, so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze.
So now I must weigh the options before me, carefully praying for wisdom to see where the devil will attack in both outcomes, how I will fight the attacks, how in the end (no matter what) my relationship with my children stays strong as well as their relationship with EACH OTHER; because one day I wont be here and they will still need each other.
Isaiah 41:10 - Fear not, for I am with you: be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand~
FINAL BATTLE STRATEGY: PRAYER ROOM - EVEN IF YOU CAN'T CLEAN OUT AN ENTIRE ROOM OR CLOSET, FIND A SECRET PLACE TO PUT YOUR MOST URGENT PRAYERS. VISIT IT EVERY DAY. SEEK THE LORD IN THIS PLACE AND WATCH YOUR LIFE CHANGE.
MATTHEW 6:6 - BUT WHEN YOU PRAY, GO INTO YOUR ROOM, CLOSE THE DOOR AND PRAY TO YOUR FATHER, WHO IS UNSEEN. THEN YOUR FATHER, WHO SEES WHAT IS DONE IN SECRET, WILL REWARD YOU
Are you ready mommy? Are you ready to take your weapons into battle and reclaim your motherhood? Reclaim your calling?
Credit and quotes from Fervent and the Holy Bible