A Look at “A Worthy Mama”

Today you get a look back at a post I wrote just a little over two years ago. Lillie was still a fresh little babe and I was a new full-time stay at home mama. To be honest, I still have a lot of these same feelings. It’s a journey of walking with the Lord and continuing to discern His will for my life.

Though we may not always feel worthy, we can know we are worthy, because we are His!

A Worthy Mama

I’ve been reading and hearing a lot  recently about moms. With mother’s day just behind us, there has been a lot of focus on the wonders of motherhood. I’m now 3.5 months into being a full time stay at home mom, from previously working two days a week as a hospice nurse after Gracie was born. I love being at home with my girls and I wouldn’t trade it for the world (don’t ask me that at 3 o’clock in the morning when they are both awake) but as I expected, I have lost something that made me feel…worthy.

The sweet girl that made me a mommy of two and stay at home mama

It’s a word that was hard for me to pin down. Part of me felt fulfilled by a job that helped people and their families through an emotional last journey that led to heaven. I miss feeling the purpose I felt in connecting with families and giving them support. Now I find myself searching for ways to fill that feeling of being “worthy”.  The problem is that I sometimes have this churning, anxiety like feeling that tells me I need to do it all. All as in everything. All as in going above and beyond and to the moon and back again. I need to do it all,  especially now that I’m not working outside the home.

This nagging feeling tells me, I need to enjoy my time with my girls and help them explore the world around them as they grow. Teach them the ways of Christ and be a godly example for them. This nagging feeling tells me I need to have a clean home, especially now that I’m home more and that it’s something I should do as a gift to my husband. It also tells me that I need to cook better…meat and cheese or cereal for dinner doesn’t really count. It tells me I need to workout and tone up and get back to that pre-pregnancy or even better physique. It tells me I need to stay up to date on the happening of this world and not become ignorant. The nagging feelings tell me I need to volunteer my time to other’s more, find ways to give back daily with small acts of kindness. It tells me that I need to grow my little Etsy shop, increase my sales, and use those profits to support others that need it. It tells me I should be a good friend, make time to hang out. Be a good sister, wife, daughter, mother, coach, neighbor, Christian. It tells me don’t be lazy, don’t be scared, read your Bible more, don’t lose your temper, kiss your husband and the list goes on and on and then some. These thoughts start competing for room, jostling each other around and turn right into that churning, nagging feeling.

I try to check mark the never-ending list of needed improvements in my life that will make me feel more worthy. I compare my journey to others out there and decide undeniably that they are doing a better job at, well, just about everything. Yes, these are all good goals and something that I can continue to work towards little by little as I examine my gifts that I have been given to share, but is being worthy the right goal? And worthy of what? If I don’t have a clean home, or toned arms is God going to tell me I’m not worthy? If you take the time to read just a few stories in the Bible, you will see that God often chose people that didn’t seem “worthy” to fulfill His plans.

So while I will continue to work towards these goals with Christ’s help, my prayer should be one of submission. Submission to His plan and His will. A prayer that He will use me where I am and that I will listen. That He will be the guiding force in my decisions whether it be at home with my girls, or with the stranger at the store. That His light will shine through me where I am and I won’t be afraid to let it out.

If we could all choose to let His light shine through us right where we are, the world would be that much brighter.

Because this picture is just real life, people.  Real life with a toddler and a baby and a moment in front of the camera.

So to anyone out there reading along on this journey, would you join me in this prayer? A prayer to let God use  us today, and tomorrow and the next.

That we will be present in the moments that God has gifted us, wherever we may be. A prayer that God will use us through our mistakes and meet us on our journey. That His light will shine through us and that we will grow. That our gifts would be shared with others and we would know we are most worthy of His love. Focus on the Cornerstone and keep building one brick at a time. Know that His hand is outstretched and His love is always present. I pray this prayer for myself and others that join me. Will you do the same?

God is going to meet us on our journey. Whether we’re in the car, or hanging out of it in our Easter best.

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Every Monday, Keri, and I host a link party specifically for moms to share encouraging posts. We would love for you to link up your posts on motherhood below and connect with some other mamas.  Join us with #mamasharesmonday as we share our moments of motherhood.  

Follow along with Moriah
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Contentment for Today

Cherish the past. Invest in the present. Hope and plan for the future.

Find contentment where you are.

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In the midst of chaos and trials, the unsettling of the world that stirs up our hearts and makes us long for a peaceful day, find contentment. When you are a natural born worrier with the tendency to obsess, and overthink, and in general feel like you have let someone down somewhere, find contentment. In seasons of  hustle, and schedules, and stacked responsibilities, find contentment. In the seasons that move slow and smooth, where the clock ticks slow, and you feel the weight of the should be’s, find contentment.

Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. I can do all things through Him who strengthens me. PHILIPPIANS 4:11-13

Let the contentment flow in and quiet the unsettled cries of your heart that tell you you are not where you should be. Your strength is found in Him and He has placed you where you are for a reason and a purpose.

Our God is good.

He is steadfast and strong.

Our hearts can reap contentment when we sow our  roots into the depth of His love and goodness.

When today rushes in against you and the calls of your to do’s and the cries of your emptiness shout loud, call to the quiet of His contentment. When regrets of the past, comparison for today, and fear for the future unfurls it’s tendrils and squeezes too tight, call to contentment to release their grip.

Today is the day that the Lord has made. He has place you where you are for a purpose. Dwell closely in His love and awaken yourself the truths He holds for you today. Find contentment in the journey.

Find contentment for today.

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Accessorize with Meaning

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I don’t always wear jewelry because of the stage of life I’m in…aka grabby, chubby, adorable hands stage!  The pieces that I do own and wear have special meaning. Most of the pieces I wear have also empowered women in their purchase. When the time is right to pull out a cute necklace, I LOVE what I am wearing. It feels good to accessorize with meaning! Here is a little peak of my favorites, and most of my current necklace collection!

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Oh Tiny Gifts & Smile Africa

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Oh Tiny Gifts & Smile Africa

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Oh Tiny Gifts & Smile Africa

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New Eve Jewelry

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New Eve Jewelry

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Amani

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Amani

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Learning with Littles // Tips for Tot Home School

Learning with two little ones, ages two and four, can have its challenges. Add in a one year old miss Hellen, and schedules can sometimes get a little complicated. We are by no means doing things perfectly. We by no means have it all down, but we are learning-together. Each time I put together and teach a lesson for the girls, I learn something new myself. Whether it be a fun fact that I didn’t remember, or the opportunity to practice some hard core patience, I’m learning. Here are a few tips when trying to figure out how to home school your own tots!

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  1. Be flexible.

    If you’re a parent, you’ve probably already learned this one to some degree. Having kids causes you to have to be flexible in certain situation. Have to leave the house in an hour? Start getting ready now because there’s 100% chance that one of your kids is going to have a poopy diaper, not be able to find her shoes, or have sudden hunger pains! Just like you can plan for some flexibility when you’re getting ready to head out the door, plan for flexibility in your school day! Give yourself permission to skip an activity if focus is just not there. Let them choose between worksheet A or worksheet B. Be flexible.

  2. Start with movement.

    I’ve been starting our school days with songs. There are a few songs we do every time that help create a routine and get them in the rhythm of school time. Then I have been adding a few movement songs to get those wiggles out before we have our listening and sitting time. You can find some fun moving songs here. 

  3. Keep quiet sitting time short.

    Now obviously as they get older they should be able to sit quietly for longer periods of time, but a two year old is not going to sit still and quiet for an hour-most likely. After getting the wiggles out, maximize some time to sit still, listen, and work on activities that may require more concentration. Often 10-20 minutes is enough. You can break up these quiet times and interject more active ones in between.

  4. If at a loss-READ!

    If you’re not sure what to do next, pull out a book! My girls love reading and could bring me book after book to read. There are so many benefits to reading with your kids. You’ll get some quality time with them, and help develop those little brains! Check out this previous post for some thoughts I have on using living books in the Charlotte Mason Way.

  5. Let them play. 

    While playing, kids are learning A LOT! They are learning how to problem solve, be creative, develop fine and gross motor skills, interact with their world and others just to name a few! Play is an important part of childhood, and even in home schooling, it’s important and shouldn’t be forgotten or overlooked!

I hope these tips leave you feeling encouraged as you plan your next home schooling steps! If any other tot home schoolers have any wisdom, I’d love for you to share here with us all! Check out some of my other tot home schooling post here and here for a few more ideas. Or follow my Pinterest board here!

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Fruit of the Spirit // Kindness

Most of us would like to see ourselves as possessing qualities that exhibit kindness. Kindness speaks to me along the same vein of love. It’s easy to be kind when we like the person we are called to be kind to. It’s not so easy to be kind when we don’t like the person we are called to be kind to.

Google biblical kindness and this is what you’ll find:

“An attribute of God and quality desirable but not consistently found in humans.”

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Kindness, just like the other fruits of the Spirit is an attribute of God. We would like to see ourselves as kind, but kindness is not something that we can consistently produce on our own.

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Colossians 3:12

God calls us to be kind, but He knows that because of our human nature, we are going to need a lot of help from Him. We are going to need to consistently and authentically seek Him and listen for His direction.

Kindness can be hard.

I want to be kind, really, but sometimes, my pesky human nature and desires just seem to get in the way. Things like selfishness, fear, and plain laziness can get in the way of reaching out to someone and putting their needs ahead of my own.

It truly is a battle against the devil that we go through daily in one way or another. We have to die to our own flesh and selfish nature in order to show God’s kindness to others.

that, in reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth. Ephesians 4:22-24

But we don’t go into battle alone. We go into battle armed with the Holy Spirit and His good Word.

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. Ephesians 6:10-11

Christ has equipped us.

He has equipped us to share kindness when we dwell with Him and live in the fruit of His Spirit.

When I try to be kind on my own, only the worldly, superficial sort of kindness shows up. When I work to be kind by dwelling in the fruit of His Spirit, Godly kindness is invited to enter in and overflow into the lives of others.

Let’s invite His kindness to take seed in our hearts today.

Let us water and nurture it.

Let His kindness grow and bloom.

BUT THE FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT IS LOVE, JOY, PEACE, PATIENCE, KINDNESS, GOODNESS, FAITHFULNESS, GENTLENESS, SELF-CONTROL; AGAINST SUCH THINGS THERE IS NO LAW. GALATIANS 5: 22-23

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Every Monday, Keri, and I host a link party specifically for moms to share encouraging posts. We would love for you to link up your posts on motherhood below and connect with some other mamas.  Join us with #mamasharesmonday as we share our moments of motherhood.  

Follow along with Moriah
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Follow along with Keri
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The Best for Last // Weekend Links

Sometimes you just want to get all the good stuff right in one place. So to finish off this week, I’m saving the best for last. I’m leaving you with encouragement and inspiration found right on the internet. The internet can be a big scary place, drain your tie, or even lead you down a path of destruction. But the internet can also be a vibrant community, an encouraging story, or an inspiring find. So here’s the good stuff. The best for last stuff. Weekend links.

Encouragement for today

4 steps to take when you’re not ready for the change that is coming

Inspiration for Simple Living

For the health conscious and dessert lovers.

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Spreading Love and Giving Back

Donate to the Woods family as they welcome home their daughters! If you’d like this free print, let me know that you donated!

 

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Wake Up Loved // A Simple Way to Start Your Day

If you are reading this, I just want you to know that you are loved.

There is nothing more that you need to strive for, because your debt has been paid. As a child of God, you know whose you are and who you are living for.

If you are reading this, know that you are loved.

Do you wake up loved?

Do you wake up with this truth nestled deep inside your heart and spreading warmth throughout your soul?

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Do you live like you are loved by the King?

Maybe some days you do.

Maybe some days you jump out of bed, feet hitting the floor and joy and peace flooding your heart. Maybe you feel well rested and well equipped to begin your day.

But Maybe some days you don’t.

Maybe some days you’ve been up half the night with a fussy baby. Maybe you’ve tossed and turned as worries and unknown possibilities and fears have torn at your heart.

Do you live like you are loved by the King?

I’d venture to say that there are many days we wake up feeling groggy, and at best, half heatedly excited about starting a new day.

But what if we woke up each day with the knowledge that we are so loved, and that God is working out our lives for His good!? (Romans 8:28) What if we were filled with excitement,  joy and awe at each new day we’ve been given?

Some morning are just plain hard. The night has been dark, perhaps both literally and figuratively, and the day seems to come too soon or not soon enough. Jesus knows your struggles, your burdens, your hardships. He is ready for you to lay them at His feet. He is ready for His daughters and sons to realize that they are heirs to the Kingdom as princesses and princes of the King.

So here’s the challenge.

When you wake up, find the joy!

Don’t reach for your phone and check your e-mails, Instagram, Facebook- I promise you won’t find true joy there. It’s tempting to feel like these things demand our attention, but do they really? The answer is no, they don’t. Instead, say a prayer, open your Bible, gather your children, your husband, heck, even the cat, and give thanks for this day! Let us rejoice and be glad in it. For this truly is the day that the Lord has made, and you are so loved.

Remember how simple it is.

You are loved.

Let’s meet back here next week for encouragement and thoughts on waking up loved. I hope you’ll be back and join in! #wakeuploved

Check out these posts for more encouragement! You Are Loved // Spread Some Love

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Hellen’s 1st Birthday // In Picture

To celebrate Hellen’s first birthday we had a small gathering with our neighbors in our back yard. Hellen got to dive into her first piece of cake, and from what we could tell, I think she enjoyed it! Enjoy the pics, because seriously, how cute is she!? And also, how has this girl already been one for a week!? She has been standing on her own for awhile, but she is now trying to move her feet a bit to walk…so I think we may be in trouble soon!

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Fruit of the Spirit // Patience

As a mama, this fruit of the Spirit hits me hard. I pray for patience. I tell my kids to be patient. I daily practice patience and daily lose my patience. It can be agonizing to have to repeat something ten times and then your child still completes the given task as slow as molasses. It can be frustrating to have the bathroom door banged on for the fifth time after you told them you’d be out in a minute. It can be terribly hard to hold it all together and let this fruit dwell in your daily comings and goings…especially as a mom.

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Once again, this is not a fruit that we can obtain by our own will. We can’t produce patience on our own as hard as we may try. I’ve tried again and again and again, and without inviting in the fruit of His Spirit, I fail again, and again, and again. As I invite the Lord’s Spirit of patience to dwell with me, it’s still hard, but I’m not alone. I’M not the one working to produce patience all by myself and running on a small amount of steam left from raising tiny human beings. When I invite His Spirit of patience to dwell in me I’m not alone. I’m not running on steam, but running with the strength, endurance, encouragement and steadfastness of the Lord.

May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had. Romans 15:5

To invite in His Spirit of patience,  we have to know Him. We have to purposefully draw near to Christ through dwelling in His word, praying, and being intentional with what we do, and even the thoughts we let into our mind.
I’m currently reading the book, Loving our Kids on Purpose, by Danny Silk. I’m only a few chapters in, but so far I am finding it really encouraging. The key that I’ve gleaned so far is that we have to be intentional. We have to choose loving on our kids even when it’s hard.
To let the Spirit of patience dwell in us is choosing to love well. It is choosing to be intentional with how we react. It is choosing the way that feels hard in the moment, but is often more rewarding. It is choosing to allow God to lead, instead of following your own desires of the flesh in the moment.

Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Ephesians 4:2

Today let’s remember to invite the Spirit of patience into our day. Especially for those mamas out there, find encouragement in this. When you are running on steam, don’t think you have to dig up this patience on your own. Look to the Lord to give you endurance and encouragement and guide you in being intentional and loving well through the fruit of patience.

Invite His fruit of patience to take seed.

Water it daily.

Let it grow and bloom.

BUT THE FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT IS LOVE, JOY, PEACE, PATIENCE, KINDNESS, GOODNESS, FAITHFULNESS, GENTLENESS, SELF-CONTROL; AGAINST SUCH THINGS THERE IS NO LAW. GALATIANS 5: 22-23

mamaharesmondayjpg

Every Monday, Keri, and I host a link party specifically for moms to share encouraging posts. We would love for you to link up your posts on motherhood below and connect with some other mamas.  Join us with #mamasharesmonday as we share our moments of motherhood.  

Follow along with Moriah
Blog // Instagram // Facebook // Pinterest // Twitter

Follow along with Keri
Blog // Instagram // Facebook // Pinterest // Twitter


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Dear Hellen // A First Birthday Letter to Our Foster Baby

Dear Hellen,

Happy first birthday big girl!

I remember the day we first met you. We had just moved to Uganda and it was one of our first times visiting the babies home. You were only a few weeks old. You looked so small and fragile. All I wanted to do was hold you and let you know how much you were loved.

 

You came into our home when we started fostering you at almost four months old. You had already grown so much! All you wanted to do at first was sleep and eat. As you got more used to us, we started to see your personality and you let us know what you did and didn’t like.

When our family went back to Ohio over Christmas you got to stay with Mama Jia, and she loved on you so well. You two have a special bond and it’s quite clear that you now have two mamas!

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You have always been strong and stubborn.

These things can be used for so much good, baby girl. I pray that you grow your walk with the Lord and that even in these first few years we can help point you to Jesus. Grow strong in Him.Don’t rely on your own strength as you walk life’s journey, rely on the never giving up, always and forever love of Jesus. Use your stubbornness to stand firm for what you know is right. Stand up for the weak and don’t let others look down on you for any reason. You have been wonderfully created in the image of our Savior, for a reason and a purpose. You were made with a perfect plan. You were made to glorify Jesus and be a shining light.

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Hellen

Your name means, Shining Light. You are a shining light! I won’t deny that even in the short time we have known you, you have tried our patience. You have tested us and we see how Jesus is refining us through raising you. But even in this short time, you have been a light in our lives. Your smiles, head flinging dance moves, and belly laugh fill our hearts with joy. You are loved.

It is so hard and so special that you have a few different groups of people to call your family. You have a loving father and nine siblings! Whenever we visit them we can see how much they care about you and how much they miss you. They are doing what they believe is the best thing for you. You are loved.

You have also found a family in us. Though we won’t be able to be with you forever, you will forever be in our hearts. You are loved.

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And you will forever have a family in the family of Jesus. If you are ever unsure of where you belong, look to Jesus. You are His. You are loved.

Your birthday may always come with some memories that are hard, but we celebrate you sweet girl!

We celebrate your first year of life!

You were made with a purpose and you are loved.

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