Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Seasons:Encouragement for Women

I love where we live. We get to experience all four seasons more or less. I am always eager to begin a new season, but I try enjoy the season I am in and appreciate the beauty of that time also. 
Notice I said TRY... 
Sometimes in the thick of almost 100* days you ache for a bit of cool, or in the middle of rain and bits of cold you yearn for sunshine and flowers. 

You understand where I am coming from, I'm sure. 

The same is true in life many times. 

Maybe you are a young woman who aches for the time when you will be married with children and you just wonder when that will finally happen for you... I know this feeling, I was there for a long time. I always knew I wanted to be married with a big family. 
Don't become discontent young woman. Pray! Seek God's plan for you right now. God has purpose for you, right where you are... Use your time of singleness as a time to serve others. Volunteer to help out a young mother who has several littles. Be an extra set of hands for her. Help out in your church in the nursery or preschool. Visit with the elderly and soak up as much wisdom as possible! Help with a food bank and pack boxes for those in need. There are so many things you can do with this time... Enjoy this season and pray, get to know God more. 

Mother of young ones who feels that the weight of the world is on your shoulders, who feels like you are never going to get ahead... Take a breath. This is your season. Young ones grow up rapidly. Right now your time is best spent caring and training and loving and nurturing... and it is a very busy, very exhausting season. I understand... I've been there too. With several young ones underfoot, I know how it can feel to never seem to have a minute to breathe. Right now, my advice is pray, seek God's face and ... 
Enjoy this time. 
You don't have to run and do everything available out there to do.You don't have to feel the need to volunteer for extra projects or tons of playdates. You don't have to exasperate yourself to make this time with your children special. Teach your children contentment (I know this may be a bit hard when so many have so much... but believe you me, it doesn't mean you are missing out) Spend time reading together. Spend time learning together. Spend time outside planting or adventuring in your yard. Spend time working alongside one another and talking. Yes, even when they are little.
 Take them to church and teach them to sit and listen. Even if you have to get up ten times... do it, it's worth it. Because with every time you are teaching that learning to sit and be quite and reverent is important and that going to church is a blessing not a burden. 
Give them responsibilities, expect them to accomplish them. Don't do everything for them. Allow them to work with you and learn to do things. 
Don't use tv or video games and iPhones as constants. I know the deep snare it is for those devices. For adults and kids, alike. It is VERY easy to get hooked.  If your kid can sit and play a game on a device, they can sit and be quiet for a service. Video games should be an occasion.... not a given. Even if you decide to allow it each day, see what is best for your family. Just don't let them become a constant... it is a battle, I know. 
(I am not a stellar parent, nor do I claim to be... I just know the struggle, because I have kids myself)

Young mother... enjoy your season. It is probably one of the fastest seasons... even though when going through it, it feels never-ending. Pray over these precious ones. Pray even now for the men and women they will become and be consistent. Your work is NOT in vain.
Mother of big kids... 
This is a lovely season. You see your children becoming their own person. They may be big enough to drive, which is incredible and a bit terrifying. But this is what  you have been teaching and training for... To allow that child of yours to venture out a bit and dip their feet in that water. You can't be certain that your child will always do everything you want them to do. But you can pray, you can encourage, you can be consistent in what you do and what you believe. Don't say something and act another. Be real with your kids. When you mess up, admit it, repent and move ahead. Make a valiant effort to do better. They will see that. Give your child an amount of freedom, but don't toss them out to wolves. Just because the state may say a 17/18 year old is an adult, doesn't necessarily mean your job is done, Mom. They still need you to be present and they need to know you and still depend on you. Encourage them to spread their wings. Give them responsibilities and expect them to accomplish those. DON'T DO EVERYTHING for them!!!!!!!! We have far too many young men and women who never want to grow up... and when everything is done for them, and life is constantly easy, well... they don't want to move past that season.
Mother of big kids, this season is new and different, but still very wonderful. Enjoy it too and don't forget to continue to seek the Lord and pray for these wonderful blessings He has given you. 
Maybe your season is different from these I've mentioned... Maybe you don't have any children, maybe you have already raised yours... Friend, don't think for one second that your job is done. You're just in another season. Maybe you have read all this and see that you haven't used your time and enjoyed it... Don't give up. Begin today. Get in God's word. Learn about Him! Give Him your all and joyfully serve in whatever situation you are in.  
Do you desire to have children in your house again? Have you considered foster care? I know in GA there is tremendous need. Have you looked into service projects in your area? Is there a homeless center you can volunteer in? Is there an area in your church that is needing help? Serve! 
We were placed on this earth not to be served, but to serve others. Our Lord and Savior came and He SERVED people... we should too! Shine that light brightly. Whatever season of life you may be in. Serve with joy. Don't feel you can do everything, but do something. 
Mother... serve your family and as you do, teach them that servitude is a blessing and not a burden.

I pray this comes as a blessing to you.

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