Friday, August 22, 2008

July 27th, 2008

July 27th

Laura Ann's Baptism

21 "As for me, this is my covenant with them," says the LORD. "My Spirit, who is on you, and my words that I have put in your mouth will not depart from your mouth, or from the mouths of your children, or from the mouths of their descendants from this time on and forever," says the LORD.
(Isaiah 59:21 NIV)

39The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call."
(Acts 2:39)

An excerpt from "How Our Children Come to Faith"

by: Stephen Smallman

"If you are not part of a tradition that baptizes children, you can at least respect the sincere conviction that lies behind that practice. It is true, unfortunately, that baptism is misused. In too many instances, the water of baptism is given virtually magical powers to transform a child. For others, the baptism of children is little more than a family celebration. But there are also many, many examples of parents' bringing their children to Christ as an act of faith to ask for his blessing on them. As they see the water applied outwardly, they trust that the Spirit will also be at work inwardly. It is God who will save our children, not baptism, and we can pray that he will start that work in their hearts early in their lives."

In case you read this one day my dear Laura Ann,

You must know how awesome our God is. You only have to look around you or to the intricate workings of your own body to see it. We promised in humble reliance on our Lord Jesus Christ to raise you in the love and admonition of the Lord Jesus Christ on the day that you were baptized. You have been set apart. You are special and have a special purpose to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. The first time that I knew that you were growing inside of me I wanted you to be a woman of God and trusted His promises for you. Your father, brother and I love you very much, but the love of Christ far outweighs our love. We will disappoint you at times but He will not. He is always with you. Your father and I pray often for your relationship with Christ and we even pray for your future husband if God wills that. You are asleep in your crib, unable to get out without being scooped up. This is how salvation works. "He reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters" Psalm 18:16 I know that God will finish the work that He has begun in me. I fall so short of being the woman of God that I want to be and always will until glory. I continue to pray that my life will be a living sacrifice. I pray that by God's grace the sanctification process will have produced many more fruits of the spirit in my life by the time that you are able to understand this. I have been sharpened by my relationships with godly women and I pray to be an example to you of how Christ's work in our hearts can enable us to live as becomes followers of Christ.

I love you but more importantly God loves you.

Sincerely, Mama

Friday, August 1, 2008

Take Heart

Please click on "In my Arms" by Plumb and listen. I found it on a friend's blog just this morning as I was contemplating motherhood and God's grace. This song has a dual meaning for me. I want to be just the mother that God wants me to be. I believe that includes being a safe soft place to fall for my children as well disciplining them. The song also makes me think of our heavenly father's promise to never leave us or forsake us. We are truly safe in His arms, and only through that can we attempt to provide any real comfort or safety to our children.

I still have plans for many posts about football practices, baptism, life in general for the past few weeks. I still plan to do the post about Blessed Be Your Name. I wanted to interrupt my plans to have chronological posts for this one.

This morning I was trying to plan our Fall schedule... football, church, school for a 2nd grader, a nine month old, a 17 year old little sister, a 40 year old man in college.......

I wasn't sure how much that I could handle and still be the mother and wife that God calls me to be. I want to be a good mother. I love both of my children very much and now feel even more of motherly responsibility to my little sister (who now lives with us). Our son Will has been at the forefront of my mind. This is part of an email that I sent to my husband this morning:

"He is so important to me. I want to do even more for him. These years will pass by like lightning. I only have one chance to do this. Oh what an awesome responsibility. Only through Christ can I even attempt it."

He replied with this:

“Take Heart”
Posted: 01 Aug 2008 12:00 AM CDT

“God’s grace means that I can rest assured that I’ll have everything I need to be what he wants me to be and to do what he wants me to do in the situation in which he’s placed me.
I’m no longer restricted to the limits of my own strength and wisdom. By his grace, I’ve a new identity and a new potential. I’m a child of God; the risen Christ now lives inside of me. I need no longer fear people or circumstances; I don’t have to feel weak in the face of suffering or temptation, because I no longer rest in the resources of my own ability. I’m in Christ and he’s in me.
This new identity gives me new potential as I face the realities of life in this bent and broken world. God’s grace gives me reason to ‘take heart.’”
—Paul David Tripp, “Psalm 27: Take Heart”
My prayer is that I provide the safe place that the children that depend on me need while doing all of the things that God calls me to do. May they feel safe with me because we are all clinging to Jesus. I pray that I reflect on God's grace as the anxieties of this world and our enemy call on me to stand down.
My Father in heaven, may I truly find my rest, safe in your arms.
Psalm 27
1 The LORD is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life— of whom shall I be afraid?
2 When evil men advance against me to devour my flesh, [a] when my enemies and my foes attack me, they will stumble and fall.
3 Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then will I be confident.
4 One thing I ask of the LORD, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple.
5 For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle and set me high upon a rock.
6 Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me; at his tabernacle will I sacrifice with shouts of joy; I will sing and make music to the LORD.
7 Hear my voice when I call, O LORD; be merciful to me and answer me.
8 My heart says of you, "Seek his [b] face!" Your face, LORD, I will seek.
9 Do not hide your face from me, do not turn your servant away in anger; you have been my helper. Do not reject me or forsake me, O God my Savior.
10 Though my father and mother forsake me, the LORD will receive me.
11 Teach me your way, O LORD; lead me in a straight path because of my oppressors.
12 Do not turn me over to the desire of my foes, for false witnesses rise up against me, breathing out violence.
13 I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.
14 Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.