Author Archives: wove8415

A Nice Mom

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I am on a field trip with my youngest daughter’s class. There is nothing quite like being on a bus with a group of giggly 7-year-olds. We started our adventure at 6:30 a.m., which is a little early for this mama. I had to “arise while it was yet night” in order to get my bible study and prayer time accomplished before I left. During my prayers, I asked God to give me patience and joy for this day, as I knew I would need it.

I have found myself being a little hard on my daughter lately. I have been frustrated by her inability to follow directions, her adeptness at tattling, and her ability to lose vital things such as homework and shoes. I have lost my patience more than once recently, and you might say she and I have been in a battle of wills. This little girl really knows how to push my buttons!

But today is a new day…a beautiful new day that the Lord has made. It is my choice to rejoice and be glad in it. It is my choice to let the frustrations of the last few days roll off my heart and embrace this opportunity to spend the day with my princess, enjoying a wonderful experience that will create a lifetime of memories.

Already today, I have heard her friend tell her, “Your mom is nice.” I WANT to be a nice mom. I want to be a mama who laughs, cuddles, and shares secrets. I want to be a mama who has forgiveness in her heart, just like God has for me. Be kind to one another, tender hearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. (Ephesians 4:32)

One day all too soon my little girl will be grown. She will move on to her own life with her own family. I will look back on this time in our lives and remember. I doubt I will remember the lost shoes, the messy room, the missing homework, or the tattling. Most likely I will remember her precious hugs, sweet kisses, beautiful smile, and adorable laughter. I will reflect on her kindness to others, her bubbly personality, her sassy walk, and her flair for fashion. Most definitely, I will remember her innocence and her unquestionable love for Jesus.

Lord, help me in my moments of frustration to remember the bigger picture. Help me to embrace and cherish this beautiful gift and make a wonderful difference in her life. When she looks back on today, let her remember what a great day we had, and that she really does have “a nice mom.”

She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue. (Proverbs 31:26)

Love Will Keep Us Together

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Yesterday was my youngest daughter’s 7th birthday. We made a big day of it, doing everything we could to make her feel like the special princess she is. She glowed and sparkled from all the attention she received, the gifts she was given, and the fun she had. She is a real blessing in our lives, as are her two brothers.
Four days from now will mark the sixth anniversary of the day we met these three little blessings. They came to us from foster care, needing a place to be united and loved. And boy…are they loved! They have brought us so much joy…far beyond what we imagined possible.
What a privilege it has been to be chosen to be their mommy. What a privilege it has been to teach them about Jesus, to help them realize the value the Lord places on each of them. What a joy it has been to be the recipient of so many hugs, kisses, giggles, and secrets. What an honor it has been to receive their love. I, as a parent, am overwhelmed by their love. I am sure that is how God feels about us, His children. When we love and adore Him, I am certain that His heart is overflowing.
God has used these three little people to restore broken relationships, fill a void, and create everlasting bonds. He has used them as a visual reminder that “family” is not defined by bloodlines, but by emotions. He has used them to teach us, their parents, that obstacles can be overcome through persistence and prayer. He has used them to teach us compassion for those who come from hard places. He has used them in our home, in our church, and in our community, and they have been mighty vessels for His cause.
Have there been times the kids have been disrespectful and disobedient? Sure! But I love them anyways. Have there been struggles? Absolutely! But I love them anyways. How sweet it is to know that God also loves me, even when I am disrespectful and disobedient, even in the times of struggle. How secure it is to know that He is always near, when I am lonely or afraid, suffering from a lack of confidence, or simply lost.
Will there be days in the future when I will feel frustrated, impatient, and exhausted? Most definitely! But the days that I will feel joy, love, excitement, devotion, peace, and happiness will far outweigh the days I don’t. These kids have some struggles that come from their previous circumstances. We have obstacles to overcome. But through whatever this life brings us, we can rest in the assurance that our Father in Heaven loves us with His strong and mighty love, and we love each other with a strong and mighty love. No matter what the enemy throws at us, we know God loves us and we love Him. We know we love each other. And that love will keep us together.

Precious Firsts

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By Betty Predmore
Another vacation is in the books, and what a splendid time it was. I thank God for the wonderful opportunities He has given me to experience so many “firsts” with my family. I will never forget the first time my children got a glimpse of the awesome Half Dome at Yosemite, the magnificent and breathtaking Grand Canyon, the wonder of driving through the Sequoias, the sunset over Morro Rock, or the spectacular sight of Niagara Falls. These “firsts” can never be duplicated, and are not to be soon forgotten, Perhaps less spectacular, but equally special, would be their first airplane ride, their first boating and tubing trip, their first experience of fishing off the dock at Sandy Pond, New York, their first trip to Kentucky horse stables, or their first visit to Nashville. Still more firsts that we will treasure include the first time we camped in a tent, went to the beach, waded through creeks, and caught lightening bugs in Tennessee. There is also our first camping trip in our trailer, our first hike in the red rock of Sedona, and our first jeep ride.

These are just a few of the “firsts” we have experienced in our family vacations. It is very important to me that my children experience nature and all of God’s beautiful creation up close and personal. I want them to appreciate this wonderful, beautiful land He has given us and have respect for the creatures we share it with. These are the experiences that create memories that will last a lifetime. And while we jokingly dub ourselves “The Modern Day Griswolds”, we wouldn’t trade our adventures for anything. They are priceless, they are unique, they are undisputedly ours.

As important as all of these “firsts” are, even more important are the “firsts” in their spiritual journey. The first scripture they memorized, the first song they learned, their first bible, their first experience with church camp, the first time they felt the presence of the Holy Spirit. I cherish the first questions they asked about Jesus, and the first time they prayed.

I know there will be many more precious “firsts” they experience in this life. I know God has much in store for them; some I will be a part of and some I will not. My prayer is that, as they move along this God-given journey, Jesus will remain FIRST in their hearts. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” Matthew 6:33.

Becoming The Other Woman

 

By: Betty Predmore
So much time has been spent over the years on trying to be a better “me”. I have strived daily, monthly, and yearly to be more like that marvelous woman we read about in Proverbs 31. I have worked diligently, I have loved my family, I have shown respect to my husband. I have received his praise and love for my efforts and the last time I asked, my children still love me. I have been SOME of her every day, but never ALL of her in a single day.

Years have come and years have gone. The hands of time have left their mark upon me. There are wrinkles where smooth skin once resided, and I thank God daily for the hair color that hides my grays. And along those years, as I have put forth my efforts to gain those sweet virtues found in Proverbs, my heart and soul have matured in the things of God. The realization has come to me that although I have been striving for some time to be like that Proverbs 31 woman, I have been slowly becoming that “other woman”. You know the one… we find her in Titus 2:3-5. She is among those women that are older, more mature women, who know the Lord well and have enjoyed that relationship with Him for many years. She belongs to that group of women who are “reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things-that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed.”

When did this happen? How did I get to this point in my physical and spiritual maturity? Am I up to the task? God has used the passage of time and my desire to serve Him to bring me to this place in my life and in my responsibility. He has called me out to be an example to those younger women who are where I was in what seems like such a short time ago. He expects me to live a life that portrays that of a Godly woman, a life that models to others how to act and how to treat those that we love. Is it hard sometimes? ABSOLUTELY! But it is no harder to be that Titus woman than it is to attain all the qualities that the Proverbs 31 lady possesses.

Ladies, are you striving for goodness? Do you find yourself at a level of maturity in which God is calling you to be an example to the younger generation? Are you up to the task? Are you somewhat surprised by the passage of time? What an absolute honor and blessing it is when we get to be that shining example for our beloved Lord! What a sweet and precious gift our maturity brings to others! I pray that your desire is the same as mine today….to open your heart to the opportunity God has placed before you, to pour out your love and wisdom to those who seek to grow in a way that pleases their Lord, and to celebrate that life has brought us to this place in our journeys where He trusts us enough to use us in this way. I am excited to be the other woman! Are you?

A ” Thank You Lord” Moment

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By:  Betty Predmore & Cassie Acosta

Month after month, I share my blogs with you all. Month after month, I give you glimpses into my life, my family, my heart…often with humor for the zaniness that resides in our home, and often with a humble heart for all that God has given me.
This month, in honor of Mother’s Day, I am honored to share with you a blog my sweet daughter wrote for her mama. Just like any mother, I feel fortunate for the children I have been blessed with. Most of the time, being a mama is a thankless job. I know you moms can relate. But every once in a while, a child will do something special that just blesses your heart. Something that makes you stop and say, ” Thank you, Lord, for the gift of this sweet child.” This is one of those moments….a “thank you Lord” moment, for the sweet words and loving heart of a daughter that is such a treasure to me. So I share my gift with all you mamas, and I pray that you have those sweet “thank you Lord” moments in your own hearts:

For you, my dear momma:

I am your typical daughter; there is little that is special about me. The only distinct difference between me and other daughters is the kind of mother that I have behind me.
A mother plays a vital role in a child’s life, particularly her daughter’s. My mom and I have had our fair share of issues but when all is said and done, she is so much more to me than just a mother. She is my mom, my friend, my leader and quite often, my voice of reason when I’ve gotten lost in the ways of this crazy world. The word ‘mom’ has come to hold so much more meaning to me as years go by, I grow older and I find myself needing her more and more.

“She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.” -Proverbs 31:27

My mother is a soldier; an everyday hero hidden amongst the rest of the world. You will find no patches or insignia on her dress, simply a heart for her family that she bares proudly on her sleeve. She has not faced your typical war, but rather the war that exists between mother and child, a war that causes much heartache and yet, she stands firmly all the while. We’d like to assume that when it comes to all mothers (or all parents, really) that the love they have for their child is unwavering. But more often than we’d like to admit, this is simply not the case. I’ve given my mom plenty of reasons to dislike me. In fact, most of my siblings have, but her love has never faltered.

“She is clothed with strength and dignity, she can laugh at the days to come.” -Proverbs 31:25P

My mother is a leader. She exudes greatness in all that she does while maintaining grace and humility. My mom is not perfect, nor would she ever claim to be, but her flaws are often her greatest strengths. She speaks with wisdom, always leading from faithful instruction rather than haste and anger (Proverbs 31:26). My mom is a Proverbs 31 woman, through and through, and is the most wonderful deliverer of the Lord’s message.

My dear mother is my light and my greatest inspiration. She is all that I am and ever hope to be. Thank you God for the ultimate blessing that is my mother. For she is the only one who knows my words before I speak and my heart without question.

“Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.” -Proverbs 31:29

Love, Cassie

 

 

A Resurrected Heart

By:  Betty Predmore

As I sit in this hospital waiting room today, waiting as my son undergoes his 64th procedure, I feel anger bubbling up to the surface. I feel anger at his birth mother, whose lifestyle of poor choices left three small children with different struggles to overcome. This son has a health issue brought on by his mother’s drug use, another son has learning delays, a daughter has speech issues. These children are suffering the consequences of a mother who put her own “wants” ahead of her children’s needs. It makes me angry! I am angry that my daughter struggles at times to be understood. I am angry that one of my sons struggles so much in school. I am angry that another son faces a lifetime of procedures. I can work myself up into a real “fit” if I let myself.

But then God speaks to me. He whispers in my ear in that soft way that only He can. He reminds me that I must have a forgiving heart. He reminds me that this woman has an opportunity to be forgiven of these sins because of the price my Savior paid at Calvary, and that it is not MY place to judge her. He also reminds me that if I want my life to imitate His, my heart needs to be filled with joy and thanksgiving, not anger, resentment, and strife.

So I take a moment and I put to death my heart of anger, and I resurrect a heart of joy and thankfulness. I am thankful that this woman, despite her chaos and addictions, chose to birth her babies rather than abort them. I am thankful that God chose my husband and me to raise these children as our own, to give them love and encouragement. I am thankful that we have the precious opportunity to teach them the Word of God and to live it out before them. I am thankful that every night an 11-year old and a 7- year old hug me and kiss me goodnight, and a 6-year old princess prays for me. I am thankful to be there for the loose teeth, baseball games, camping adventures, and movie nights. I am thankful that I can sit here today in this cold and sterile waiting room, and that my face will be one of the first my son sees when he wakes up.

Most of all, I am thankful that God can take this heart…my resurrected heart….and use it to bring joy, peace, and love to not only my children, but others as well.

Jesus did not sacrifice His life that day so long ago so that we could be angry.  He did not perish so that we had to carry our sins around with us like heavy baggage. He gave His life on the cross so that we could all have forgiveness. He sacrificed so that we could live with joy and hope, and the assuredness of being washed of our transgressions. We find that assuredness through our intimate relationship with Him.

Are you carrying a heavy load today? Are you living with anger, fear, or hopelessness? ~Remember that Jesus was resurrected on the third day and HE LIVES! Let your heart be resurrected through His saving grace. Trade your sorrow for laughter, your anger for joy. “And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7)