As a Stay At Home Mom God’s Grace is My Super Power

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2 Corinthians 12:9 NIV

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”

As a stay at home mom (SAHM) of three children four and under, God’s grace is definitely my super power. The scripture above is one of my favorites because when I’m feeling overwhelmed and tired, I quote this verse and keep it moving. I know Jesus is my help. He blessed us with our babies and He has given us the grace needed to care for them.

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Our four year old, Elyssa, is a super energetic, happy, inquisitive,creative, helpful and talkative girl. She keeps me on my toes for sure.

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Our 22 month old, Elaina, is a nurturer, she’s also sensitive, observant, affectionate and a joyful girl.

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Our soon to be 9 month old son, Eddie VI, is busy speed crawling and discovering the world around him. He’s active, inquisitive and loving.

Eddie is doing a great job nursing, he has since the day he was born. He’s always latched great and my supply has always been high. I’m grateful to God that I had successful nursing relationships with all of my children.

As a SAHM, I where many hats and my job is never done. Some days are happy and productive. Other days are draining and completely unproductive. Some days the children are cooperative and happy and other days they struggle to listen, fight over every toy and whine about everything. My relationship with God keeps me going on the good and bad days. I can talk to him, mediate on his word, play some praise and worship music and know that He is with me and His grace is sufficient for me. I was created to be a great mom, not of my own strenth but of His!! It’s a great feeling to know that my Heavenly Daddy has my back. Hes leading and guiding my husband and I as we raise godly children. My husband and I are a great team and he’s a awesome hands on father.

So be encouraged mommies!!! You’re doing an awesome job. No one is perfect and no child is perfect but we serve a perfect, all knowing God, who promised to never leave us or forsake us. Rest in His peace and His promises!! And the next time the children do things to drive you up the wall, take a second to thank God that he blessed you with your children and ask him for a extra dose of His grace!! He’s faithful, he will give it to you!!!

Eye Spy: What We Learn About Relationships From Our Parents

Last night, my husband and I attended a 1 year Anniversary Celebration for a group called Truth Parties. Truth Parties are a group of singles that meet once a month to discuss different topics surrounding healthy relationships. Mrs. Nneka Owens, the founder of the group, is my supervisor for my counseling licence. Nneka is a licensed counselor, an awesome woman, wife, mother and Christian who lives according to the word of God. The celebration included dinner, comedy, poetry reading and dancing. The special guest was Horace H.B. Sanders, a Christian comedian who was seriously hilarious!!

Nneka said something at the party last night that stuck with me. She encouraged the parents in the room to make sure they were demonstrating healthy relationships in front of their children. She reminded them that their children are watching and what they see will affect them as they grow up. Nneka asked the crowd what they remember seeing in their homes regarding their parents interaction as children. She had a friend of her’s read a poem that she wrote about relationships and how people are affected by the negative and positive messages that they see and hear growing up. In the poem, Nneka talked about messages people receive about unforgiveness, divorce, low self esteem, rejection etc. The end of the poem spoke of the truth that the women in the poem later embraced after learning to see herself how God sees her, after she received her healing from the past and made a conscious decision to do better and live better for her children. It was a powerful message.

Now I ask the same questions to you. What messages did your parents teach or show you growing up? Were they positive or negative? Maybe you observed a lot of arguing, domestic violence or grew up with an angry struggling single parent. Maybe you grew up in a two parent home but they were distant and rarely appeared to be happy together. Maybe your mom told you “Don’t trust men. They only want one thing and if they get you pregnant, they will leave you all alone,” or your dad told you “women just want your money. Never give your heart to a woman, just play the field.”  Whatever those negative messages may have been, you have to FIGHT to renew your mind and DETERMINE in your heart that you will not accept those thoughts and live in that mindset anymore.

My dad is the best dad in the world but his father was far from that to him and their family. My grandpa was not an active parent. He went to work each day, helped pay the bills and to my knowledge, that was pretty much it. He cheated on my grandma, he didn’t go to any of my dad’s sports events, he wasn’t loving, affectionate or encouraging must of the time. He was a nice man and he loved his family but maybe he was only doing what his father taught him about what it means to be a man, father and husband.

We must break the generational curses in each and every one of our families!! As a social worker, I see many families where the grandmother was a single mother, high school drop out with 8 kids. She did not teach her children about healthy relationships or the importance of getting an education, therefore her children dropped out of HS and had babies outside of marriage too. One of her children would become my client and have the same issues going on in her family. It would be up to that parent to make sure her children have a better life. She would need to make sure the children got up every day and off to school, she would need to teach her children about sex and the importance of respecting their bodies. If we don’t teach our children these things, who will????

My parents got saved when they were 19 years old and they decided that they were going to live according to the word of God and abandon ideologies of their past. They both made up in their minds that they would be better parents and better spouses than what they had seen. I say that to say this, we can no longer live in the excuses of “I’m like this because of what my parents did.” When you know better, you must do better. I’m truly sorry that some of us did not get the love, nurturing, affection, support, encouragement etc that we deserved BUT this is a new day and if God woke up you, He has given you all that you need to be successful!

If you are struggling with your past experiences regarding your parents, relationships, self esteem etc, you need to seek godly counsel to get restored, renewed and recharged. Make it a point to do that soon, don’t wait. Read your word, talk to a minister at your church, get with other saints and seek their support. Find out what the word of God says about you. You don’t have to be another statistic. If you are a parent, remember your children are watching the verbal and nonverbal messages you are giving them about relationships, life, men, women, parenting, religion, work ethic, etc.

As yourself, what would you like to have seen growing up regarding healthy relationships and then make sure you give that to your children or future children.

Here is a little more information on Truth Parties. Truth Parties are designed to bring  men and women together to discuss relationships in a candid and respectful manner.  The goal is to heighten awareness and promote longevity in relationships, while also exposing negative thought patterns, through purposeful communication. Truth Parties are not about men vs. women; it’s not about male or female bashing.  Truth Parties encourages individuals to assess where they stand in their relationships, and decide if they need to define or re-define their position.  Truth Parties are intense, educational, fun and sometimes entertaining!

Truth Calender:
May 21, 2010 – What would you do if…..? Part 2 Role Plays/Discussion

June 25, 2010 – Summer Kickoff – Grilling on the Patio (discussion to be determined)

July/August – Break

September – Back to the Truth

Location:
The Fairlane Club
5000 Fairlane Woods Dr.
Dearborn, MI 48126
off hubbard/across from fairlane mall

http://nnekaowens.net/TruthPartiesforRelationships.en.html

Nneka J. Owens, LPC NCC
313-999-9888
2312 Monroe
Dearborn, MI 48124

info@nnekaowens.net

Why Did I Get Married

 I know lots of people have seen the movies Why Did I Get Married and Why Did I Get Married Too. I saw both movies and thought they were entertaining. I can’t say they changed my life or taught me things about marriage that I hadn’t already heard before. The movies did stress the importance of forgiveness, communication, fidelity, honesty etc. I thought both movies had good messages.

When I ask myself why did I get married, the answers were pretty simple. I wanted to get married because I wanted companionship. I wanted a man of God who was faithful, loving and hard-working and fun. A man who I could share my life with and raise godly children with. I wanted to have a marriage that represented Christ and was an example to others. I wanted a wonderful husband to go to bed with each night and wake up next to each morning. I wanted to get married to a man who would make me better and a man who I would make better. These a few of the my reasons.

It always confuses me when I see married couples who act like their still single. In those situations I ask myself, what was the point of them getting married? If people are going to live like they are roommates who occasionally have sex, why did they get married? Some married folk don’t want to share their time, money, career, ministry, body etc with their spouse. They want to have separate friends and separate lives. The problem is, most people don’t understand what marriage is all about when they say I Do!

Marriage is about becoming one. It’s no longer about whats yours and mine, its ours. We need to share and collaborate and be a team. We are in this together, sink or swim, good times and bad. We are to love, cherish, respect, honor, submit, serve, give, give, and give some more to one another. If you don’t want to do these things PLEASE DONT GET MARRIED!!!

Our church and many other churches provide premarital classes or counseling for their congregation and those in the community. It’s really important that all couples seek counseling BEFORE walking down that aisle and saying I Do! So many topics are explored in premarital classes and each topic is explored from a biblical perspective. We wanted to know what the bible said about marriage, sex, raising children, discipline children, in-laws, husband and wives responsibilities, etc. Our church, Word of Faith, does an awesome job of teaching what the bible says about everyday issues and how we can apply the word and walk out the scriptures in our everyday lives. Were all supposed to live according to the word and allow God into all areas of our lives. He is not just an on Sunday God. We need His guidance in all areas.

I’m so thankful that we had and have godly examples of strong marriages around us, the Bible as our guide and the teachings from our church and singles ministry about the purpose, joys and challenges of marriage. Too many people get married blindly for the wrong reasons and their marriages end quickly. Even Christians are getting divorced at an alarming rate these days.

Messages to Singles

I encourage single folk to ask themselves, why do I want to get married? Ask those around you that are saved and happily married about what they enjoy about marriage and what challenges they have faced. Pray and seek God about what needs to be changed and sharpened on the inside of you regarding your preparation for marriage. There are pros and cons to singlehood, married life and parenthood. Remember to be content in all stages of life and don’t let anything cause you to feel anxious about when your time will come. We must all remember that God knows best!!

Here are some secular quotes about marriage that I thought were sort of interesting. Any thoughts?

Quotes on Marriage from About.com

1) “A happy marriage has in it all the pleasures of friendships, all the enjoyment of sense and reason – and indeed all the sweets of life. – Joseph Addison

2) I am a good friend to my husband. I have tried to make my marriage vows mean what they say. I show up. I listen. I try to laugh.” – Anna Quindlen, A Short Guide to a Happy Life

3) “Marriage is not a ritual or an end. It is a long, intricate, intimate dance together and nothing matters more than your own sense of balance and your choice of partner.” – Amy Bloom

4) Sexiness wears thin after a while and beauty fades, but to be married to a man who makes you laugh every day, ah, now that’s a real treat.” – Joanne Woodward

5) “We are told that people stay in love because of chemistry, or because they remain intrigued with each other, because of many kindnesses, because of luck. But part of it has got to be forgiveness and gratefulness.” – Ellen Goodman

6) “Marriage has many pains, but celibacy has no pleasures.” – Samuel Johnson

7) “Love is an ideal thing, marriage a real thing.” – Goethe

8 “A happy home is one in which each spouse grants the possibility that the other may be right, though neither believes it.” – Don Fraser

9) “A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, and always with the same person.” – Mignon McLaughlin

http://honeymoons.about.com/cs/wordsofwisdom/a/marriagequotes.htm

Question: Married folk, what were the top 3 reasons why you got married? Single folk, why do you desire to get married?

What the bible says about marriage:

Ephesians 5:22-33

22Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.

 23For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.

 24Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.

 25Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;

 26That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,

 27That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.

 28So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.

 29For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:

 30For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.

 31For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.

 32This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.

 33Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.