Category Archives: Parenting

A Nice Mom

image
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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)

Precious Firsts

grand canyon

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.

A ” Thank You Lord” Moment

image

 

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

 

 

So Little Time

By:  Betty Predmore
I am often amazed at the passing of time. Although it seems that some days drag on and bedtime takes forever to get here, it is amazing how quickly our days come and go. My children think “old age” is far, far from now, and that they have all the time in the world to “do this”, “go there”, “be that”. I try to share my wisdom with them and let them know that time is fleeting, like sands through the hourglass, and every day needs to be embraced and used to its fullest potential.
It is incredulous to me to think that my 30-year class reunion is this year. It is somewhat puzzling to recall that I have been on this earth almost half a century. Where did this time go? Did I make the best use of my time that I could? And what IS the best use of my time? I try to be a supportive wife and helper to my husband in his activities. This takes time. I try to be a good mom and stay active in the things that interest my children. This takes time. I make every attempt to be a loving daughter and invest in my parents and their needs. This takes time. I make every effort to be a supporter of my community by being involved. This takes time. I strive to be a supportive role model, friend, and spiritual leader. This takes time. I try to keep my house tidy, the laundry done, and the bills paid. This takes time. I try to make time for kisses, hugs, tickles, giggles, sweet laughter, and “I love you”. This takes time. We have all heard the old saying…”So much to do, so little time.”
Jesus had much less time on earth than I have had, and He had far more to accomplish. In his mere 33 years, he did more than any of us can do in a lifetime. He walked his message to thousands, sharing God’s Word and God’s love to all who would listen. He taught his disciples much on how to live and how to teach others to live. He preached to nations. He prayed for humanity. He offered his body as a living sacrifice so that we could have forgiveness of our sins, salvation, and eternal life with God the Father. He had so little time, yet He accomplished so much.
I don’t know how much time God will give me on this earth. I don’t know what experiences He has for me in the future. I only know that I am called to use my time here to be a supportive wife, to be a good mom, to care for my parents as long as I have them, to be a champion for the causes in my community, to be a supportive role model, friend, and spiritual leader. I am to make sure there is time for kisses, hugs, tickles, giggles, sweet laughter, and “I love you”. And most importantly, I am to make sure there is time for God, first and foremost. I am to allow him to direct my days and my time according to His will and purpose for my life. I am to share His love with others, and bring others hope of salvation and eternal life in the glorious heavens. I am to take my time…my so little time…and use it for the glory of the Almighty.

New Year…Same Vows

By: Betty Predmore
2015 is here! Another new year…another opportunity to resolve to “do this” or “be that”…another chance to succeed or fall short. We resolve to lose weight, get rid of our gray hair and wrinkles, exercise more, eat healthier, have more patience, make more money, have more friends…this list goes on and on.

At the beginning of 2014, I made the comment that I would not be making resolutions, I would be making vows. And as I think on this new year, I realize that not much has changed in my vows. They are much the same as last year…and though I haven’t achieved 100% success, I can say that I have continued to work on myself, my relationships, and my walk with Christ every single day. “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling” Philippians 2:12.

I still vow to be the most loving, understanding, and serving wife I can be, and to honor my husband and bring him nothing but goodness. My vow remains to be a loving, compassionate mother who bestows forgiveness when my children need it, rejoices with them in their triumphs, and wipes their tears in times of sorrow. I vow to be a daughter who honors and respects my parents, and gives from the depths of my heart to those who have raised me. I vow to be a sister that is more than a sister by blood, but also a sister of the heart who loves with no limits. My vow continues to be that I am a friend to all, and can share a smile, laugh, hug, or word of comfort, and share in the true blessing of friendship. My GREATEST vow is to love my Lord and Savior wholeheartedly, and to serve Him with a joyful and grateful heart. I want to glorify Him by using the gifts, talents, and resources He has provided to make a difference for others in this world. I want to make an impact on someone’s life in this new year, and help someone draw closer to Jesus. I want my life to be used for His good and perfect purpose. I want to DO SOMETHING for the Kingdom of God!!!

I have no way of knowing what life will bring me in 2015…. what joys and hurts will come into my life. None of us know what the future holds. What I DO know is that I am a precious child of God! YOU are a precious child of God! He has great plans for ALL of us! “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11. I look toward this new year with great expectation of what He has in store for me. My prayer today is that you, too, are looking forward to the rich blessings that are found in our sweet, sweet Lord, and that you receive all the riches He has for you! My hope is that His hand reaches down from Heaven to guide your steps. My sincere desire is that you seek His will for your life, and that you vow to live out that life with a passion to serve Him and share His word.

May 2015 be wonderful, may it bring you much joy, and may you live out this year with the comforting arms of Jesus wrapped tightly around you. To God be all Glory, Honor, and Praise

From Caution To Compassion

 

By:  Betty Predmore

A friend recently shared a touching story with me about how she met a homeless woman while on vacation.  This lady asked to borrow her cell phone, which struck up a conversation between the two. She was looking for a place to stay.  She had only one plastic bag with all of her belongings, and on her feet was only one shoe.  My friend, being the sweet, loving soul for Christ that she is, gave her some money to buy food and whatever else she might need.  She also passed along her phone number in the event that she could help her again in some way.

This God-appointed meeting took place in front of my friend’s car full of children.  One sweet girl in the car removed her flip flops and gave them to this woman in need.  One of the kids questioned his mother about why she had talked to that lady, given her money, and shared her phone.  She responded to him that she acted the way she felt Christ would have her to act.  Which brought about this question from her son:  “But don’t you tell us to stay away from strangers Mom?”

How often do we caution our children about strangers?  We do this, and rightly so, because we want to keep our children safe from the evil that is lurking out there in the world.  This is an important lesson for them.  But at what point do we let down our guard and teach them compassion for those who are so less fortunate, and are suffering through struggles such as poverty, homelessness, and loneliness?  As a mom, I see this as a dilemma.

What is the answer?  I am certainly not sure, and I welcome advice.  However, I do know this.  We can caution our children to be wary and teach them about the dangers in our society.  At the same time, we can show compassion, and live out that example before them.  Let them see us feeding the homeless.  Let them see us offering clothing or necessities.  Let them see us spend a few moments in conversation, and maybe prayer, with someone who looks like they are struggling.  Let them see us welcome those same people into our churches, to be loved on and prayed over.  Let us not think of ourselves as better than those who find themselves lost and alone.  Remember that Jesus said in Matthew 20:16, “So the last will be first and the first will be last.”

By living out our own lives with compassion, we can teach this to our kids.  And by doing so, we can move them from caution to compassion, helping them take those small steps towards becoming a servant of Christ.