Word before World – Putting God first in our busy day

Putting God first in my day has always been an ongoing struggle for me. It is one discipline that I go from being 150% in to completely neglecting it. I can go from getting up at 5:30 and loving that quiet, dark time alone with the Lord, to then waking up grumpy and slowly and just having that quick breath prayer.

Well Watered Women have got an amazing challenge going on right now, and that is the “Word before World” Challenge. Basically it is a challenge for women to get into Gods Word before they get into the day, before they pick up the phone and start scrolling, before they have to deal with emotional kids, before they have to be anything they can just be with God.

I have been following along with the challenge and have had amazing mornings with God, in the quiet, in the dark before my little ones wake up and demand things of me. I have had mornings of sweet connections through the Word with the One who loves me more than anything and as He pours His life into me, I am re-charged and can take on the day.

I have also had days where after a night of a baby boy not sleeping well, or a night of sickness, it is just too hard to wake up and get in any right frame of mind. I feel it, I feel that I needed that time with God but bed was just too comfortable after only 4 hours of sleep. When I do get up the day is already started and I am running behind all day.

There is Grace for us Mums I know that for sure!! But one thing I know is that I am challenging myself that even if all I get is a quick breath prayer before my feet hit the floor, or if it is just a quick verse that I read that is pasted on my mirror, or maybe it is just a  worship song while we are all having breakfast. Regardless of if I get an amazing 30 minutes with the Lord or just 2 minutes with Him, I will put Him before the World!

Would you like to join in on this challenge? To put Him before everything else, even if it is just 2 minutes? I know that God sees our hearts and He will bless us as we push into Him and begin to make Him our priority and Him our first thoughts of the day.

Be encouraged Mummas!!!

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Whispers from God for the defeated Mumma

Mothering is a hard job. It’s 24/7 and a job that is completely selfless and you are constantly pouring out of yourself with little feedback. It can make you tired, emotional and somedays you just feel like giving up. I feel like that some days, actually most days. It gets to the bedtime routine and with all the tantrums, and sibling fighting, and meltdowns, maybe I just can’t do this… maybe I’m not made to be a Mum, maybe I am a failure…

It’s so easy to feel defeated and it is a feeling that I know the enemy loves to drown us Mummas in. If he can make us feel like giving up, make us feel like we are not winning at this life, then he has us in a defeatist mindset, he has us living in fear, bondage, and bitterness, and not at all living the way Christ intended which is a life of freedom, victory and Joy.

We have battles everyday in our life as Mothers. Every one of us will have a different battle that we have to fight. It might be a battle for our little one’s behaviour, or battling through sleep deprivation, a battle of being a single Mumma, or battling through health issues. We all have our own daily battles as well as bigger lifetime battles. One thing I have learnt is that although our battles may look very different they are no less important and no less a struggle for each of us. God’s Word can be used to bring victory into our lives and victory over each of these battles that we face.

God wants us Mummas to know that we have been made for this life of mothering, that He has given us our treasures to disciple and point to Jesus. The only way we can do that well is to do it from a place of victory and truth. Our truth has to come from the Word of the Lord. This is how we get strengthened, refreshed and equipped for every battle that we face as Mummas.

So here are some whispers from God especially for you Mumma. Read them, meditate on them and I pray that God will really speak to you through these truths from His Word.

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But thanks be to God who gives us the victory through Our Lord Jesus Christ

1 Corinthians 15:57

This particular verse is about overcoming sin in our own lives, Now I don’t know about you, but daily I am fighting a battle against myself and the way I react with my children, the way I am quick to be angry, or the way I too easily dismiss them. This verse really speaks to me that the only way we can have victory over these sins in our own lives is through Jesus Christ. It’s through what He has already finished on the cross. It is through the completed work of salvation on the cross that I can have forgiveness from these sins, and I can walk in victory and freedom.

Let me just tell you now there is NO sin that is too great for forgiveness and NO sin is too dirty or messy for God to take away and make clean. The cross covers ALL!!!

So You are not defeated in your battle against sin!! Remember that our victory over sin comes direct through Jesus!!

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No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.

Romans 8:37

This is a truth that would be a great one to memorise. You are more than a conqueror! How do we conquer? How do we have this victorious life? This verse tells us again that it comes from Him who loved us… JESUS. This particular verse comes in the middle of some pretty intense verses that can be hard to understand, but Paul is talking to us about the fact that Gods love is so great for us that nothing can seperate us from it. Nothing on earth, nothing bad, nothing at all, but we can overcome all through Jesus. We can overcome whatever “tribulations” (a fancy word for bad things that happen to us) through keeping our eyes on Him who loved us.

Sometimes bad stuff happens to us or the people around us, whether its financial, physical, health stuff, death of a loved one, emotional stuff…. but you know none of that stops the way God loves us and we have Him to help us to be victorious in our lives throughout those times.

The verse also says that we are MORE than conquerors. MORE – what does that mean?? We will not just make it through these troubles, we will not just survive the difficulties of motherhood, but we will thrive, we will win this battle with no question that we have won. We won’t just beat the enemy 2-1 we will beat Him 200-1 (and quite possibly more!!!)

So You are not defeated in your battle against circumstances around you!! Our Victory comes from Him who loved us, and His love will never change for us. Again it comes directly from Jesus!!

 

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I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.

Philippians 4:13

Sometimes when we are facing a battle everyday, we feel like we are taking one step forward and 5 steps back. It can lead to us wanting to just give up. It is really tiring to fight the same battle day in day out. These ongoing battles are the ones where it is hard to see the small daily victories, and we want a quick fix. God’s Word here tells us clearly that we can face these battles with the positivity and joy knowing that we can do it!

We can do all that God has put before us, whether it is going to be fixed today or tomorrow or next year. We can do all the things that God has for us because He is the one who gives us the strength to do all the things! Our strength doesn’t come from a good sleep, a day off, or even a good coffee (although all of these things are very very good). Our strength only comes through God and His Word for us.

So you are not defeated in your daily, ongoing, long lasting battles. God gives you the strength to be able to face those battles and “You Can Do It”!

IMG_6231But Jesus looked at them and said “with man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.

Matthew 19:26

This verse is talking about deeper battles, the ones that we have for our children’s souls. The enemy would love for us to fail at this battle, that is for sure. The greatest gift and responsibility that God has given to us Mothers is to point our children to God and lead them to the One who loves them greater than any one in this world can. This battle is a hard one. This battle is an impossible one really! We cannot do this one, except though God who gives us all wisdom and has anointed us as Mothers (and Fathers) to lead our little ones to Jesus.

Like this verse says “with man this is impossible” We cannot do it. “but with God all things are possible” Only through God can we win this battle. This is a lifetime battle, as the enemy will do all that He can to steal your children away for Himself. We want to do all we can, and again only through Jesus’ strength, to continually point them to a loving Father, beautiful Saviour, and heavenly Helper.

So you are not defeated In your battle for your children’s souls, no matter how old they are, with God all things are possible and this battle is God’s to fight.

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For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world – Our faith.

1 John 5:4

If we have faith in God, then we don’t need to live a life of defeat, we don’t need to give up. Our faith in Jesus is what gives us the victory over the world. Victory over whatever the world may throw at you. If your faith is securely found in Jesus, your eyes are on Him, then you can walk in victory knowing that you are not defeated and you can keep moving forward in this battle.

We are called overcomers for a reason! We continually, everytime, overcome. Every battle the enemy tries, every battle, we are overcomers!! Through our faith in Jesus as the Son of God. All we have to do is walk it out.

You are not defeated in your battle against the world, or what it tries to throw at you. If you believe Jesus is God then YOU ARE an overcomer!

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Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds.

James 1:2

This one is a hard one to read sometimes, because who feels happy when they are going through a hard time? Not me!! But it is not talking about an earthly happiness here, but a deep, secure joy, that goes beyond our earthly understanding. Joy that can only come from Jesus. Our Joy comes because we know that what we are going through in our battles is either teaching us something, or training us for the future. It is developing our character and this is a great thing! We are always growing in the Lord, there is always something new to learn. Our battles can sometimes be our greatest classrooms. Our greatest learning about ourselves, or our kids, can come from our daily battles that we face.

Do not let the enemy steal your joy when you are in a battle. Your deep, secure joy, comes from knowing that God can and will use this for His Glory.

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And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap if we do not give up.

Galatians 6:9

I hope that out of everything this verse will leave you with Hope and a feeling of Victory! Do not give up in doing good. Do not give up in pointing your kids to Jesus. Do not give up training those little ones in life skills. Do not give up fighting for what is right for your family. Do not give up in your daily and ongoing battles!!! In due time… in God’s time…. You will see a harvest… You will see a breakthrough!!

These are just some of the verses I have for you, Mumma, for when you are feeling defeated, or feel like giving up. The Bible is alive and has such amazing truths for you in it for all areas of your life. Dig deep into His Word to find what He is whispering to you today for your circumstance.

I hope you finish reading this with a renewed determination to keep on going! Walk out your victory daily and stand on the Truth of His promises for you!!

When we let our children down…

I woke up after only having around 4 hours of sleep, I did not feel like I had even gone to bed the night before. It was a rough night with sick children and a baby who still wakes regularly for feeds, and my hubby was traveling for meetings around the Pacific. I was not a happy mummy at all!! I was not a grumpy mummy. I was not a person I recognised at all. I felt like a robot, an emotionless, mechanical thing, just going through the motions as quickly as I could to get my two older girls off to school. I know they talked to me, I’m not sure what my response was but I do know that I was in no way my usual self.

After they had left for school and I was left with baby and myself, I kinda shook myself awake and was completely ashamed and devastated that I had let my children down again. Me. The Mum. The one who was meant to protect them and keep them safe and be their safe place, I had been completely distant and unfeeling towards them. I almost got into the car to go to the school and pick them up and bring them home for the day to try and fix the morning.

But I knew what I needed. I needed God. I needed time by myself with my Rock and rest. I couldn’t fix this by myself. This was not a matter of the amount of sleep I did or didn’t get, this was a matter of the heart and I needed to align it back to God and His heart for my children and for me.

So what do we do? What should we do when we let our kids down? When for whatever reason we are not the parents we want to be? What should we do when we forget who we are and whose we are?

Its not easy to admit that we haven’t got it all together. Its not easy when you come to the realisation that you are not that mum that you thought you would be.

RUN TO GOD
There is only one thing we can do when we get to this point, and that is to run into the arms of the perfect and good Father God. Go to Him and cry it out, yell it out, get it all out to a God who is waiting for you to turn back to Him.

TAKE RESPONSIBILITY
We have to acknowledge that we have not been the best stewards of what He has given us, our precious children. We have to ask for forgiveness from Him for this, then let His forgiveness and Grace come pouring over you. Then walk out this forgiveness and freedom that you have in Him.

SAY SORRY
I am a firm believer in saying sorry to your children as well. Let them know that you realise that you were not behaving in the right way and that you love them and are sorry for not reacting in the best way. This also teaches them how to say Sorry and that if mum says sorry then even they can say sorry for things that they do. It also shows them that you are validating their feelings and telling them that they matter as a person.

QUALITY TIME
Then do something fun! Lighten the mood and change the atmosphere by doing something fun with them. Have a change of scene and go somewhere like a park, the beach or just for a walk. Or put some music on and have a dance party. Play a board game or game of cards, do some craft together. Whatever it is, reconnect with your children on their level and spend some quality time with them, show them you value them.

WORK ON IT WITH GOD
The hardest part and one that, for me anyway, is the scariest, is having to keep myself in check so it doesn’t happen again. I am working with God on lots of little things in my life and one of them is my short temper and yelling at my children. So I am reading Bible verses about anger, I have specific prayers for myself and I am accountable to my husband and some close friends for this. So I encourage you whatever it is that you think you have failed in, go to God about it, get some truth from His Word, pray it over yourself, declare what He says about it. Then find some good wise counsel who can keep you accountable in that particular area.

GRACE
I am not Naive and think that this is going to be fixed after one mistake, although that would be amazing if it could!! But its ok if you keep making mistakes, just take on His Grace for you and Give yourself some Grace. Don’t expect to be changed quickly but celebrate each step in the right direction, growth, even little growth is better than giving up.

Here are some verses that I have found helpful for me when I have made mistakes and in aligning my heart with His again.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. – 1 John 1:9

Keep steady my steps according to your promise,
and let no iniquity get dominion over me. – Psalm 119:133

Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out, that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, – Acts 3:19 -20

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. – 2 Corinthians 5:17

He will again have compassion on us; he will tread our iniquities underfoot.
You will cast all our sins into the depths of the sea. – Micah 7:18-19

So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. – John 8:36

But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. – 1 Corinthians 15:57

No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. – Romans 8:37

Whispers from God for the Tired Mum

7 Verses that bring rest, breathe life and heal a weary, exhausted Mama’s heart.

Being a mum is an amazing experience!! We get to form little minds and slowly guide them and point them to a Heavenly Father who loves them and created them for a good purpose. There is also no denying that being a mum is hard work!! With the monotonous daily errands like washing, cleaning, washing, feeding, washing, tidying and did I say washing? It is also an emotional job. We train them in character, in relationships and all their big emotions.

It is draining, and it’s really easy for us to get exhausted not only physically and emotionally but also spiritually. If we are not being fed spiritually and not getting our time with God daily, we are making life harder for ourselves than it has to be. God has so much to say in His Word to us as tired and worn out Mums. He has given us this beautiful challenge of mothering our treasures, and He will give us all that we need to do it well.

God loves us so much and He completely understands our exhaustion and He encourages us to rest. Isn’t that amazing!!! He wants us to rest, and more than that he calls us to rest. He invites us and begs us to rest. Just as I am writing this I am feeling that beckoning to rest right now. It’s more than just a sleep, more than a strong coffee, more than a holiday even. His rest that He wants to give you is life giving, and a refreshing, strengthening and forever kind of rest!! Thats the kind of rest that I want please!!

I want to share a few of these whispers to you!! I hope you hear them and meditate on them and let the Word soak into every part of your exhausted self!!

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“He will feed His flock like a shepherd; He will gather the lambs with His arm and carry them to His bosom, and gently lead those who are with young”.            

Isaiah 40:11

This is my favourite verse when it comes to being a Mum. It is such a beautiful picture of God watching over us. He leads us gently and holds us through it all. He holds us so close to himself that we can hear His heartbeat if we lean in to Him.

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“Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take up my yoke and learn from me, because I am lowly and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Matthew 11:28-30

This one is such a breath of fresh air for me whenever I read it. God is calling us to come to Him when we are tired and weary and that He will give us rest. He is our rest. We can give our burdens to Him and He will exchange it for His rest!! I don’t know about you but to me that sounds like a pretty good deal.

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“Arise my darling, come away, my beautiful one. For now the winter is past, the rain has ended and gone away. The blossoms appear in the country side. The time of singing has come, and the turtledove’s cooing is heard in our land. The fig tree ripens its figs; the blossoming vines give off their fragrance. Arise my darling, my beautiful one.”

Song of Solomon 2:10-13

The whole of this chapter is a beautiful love song. I love the way it can symbolise God’s love for us as well. It talks about the time of winter is past, and going into a new season of Joy. So even when you feel like the season you are in as a tired mum is going to last forever, it won’t! There is a light at the end of the tunnel (as they say). He is again calling us away to a time of intimacy and rest with Him.

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“ The Lord is my shepherd; I have what I need. He lets me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters. He renews my life; He leads me along the right paths for his namesake.”

Psalm 23:1-2

Again we have a beautiful passage showing God’s care for us and that He provides us with all we need. This includes rest and strength for each day. He is the one who leads and guides us. He takes us to a place of rest, renewal, and restoration. Don’t let the fame of this verse take anything away from the truth that it speaks to us!

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“Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”

Phillipians 4:6-7

We have no need to be worried, anxious, or stressed out because we have an amazing God who asks us to take it to Him in prayer and He will give us all peace!! Peace that we cant even understand. Peace that is rooted in His love and sovereignty over all. Even more than that, He will guard our hearts and minds from other anxious and worried thoughts as we continue to go to Him in prayer.

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“The Lord your God is among you, a warrior who saves. He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will be quiet in his love, He will delight in you with singing”

Zephaniah 3:17

He quiets you with His love and rejoices over you with singing. Can you just let that wash over you for a moment. Just close your eyes and imagine that again. He will quiet you with His Love and rejoices over you with singing!! He absolutely looks at you and smiles. This alone just gives me rest, to know that I don’t have to do anything, He just is delighted in me. We can stop striving and rest in his love and live our life knowing that Our Heavenly Father is delighted in us!

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“But those who trust in the Lord will renew their strength; they will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not become weary, they will walk and not faint.”

Isaiah 40:31

I could not write up a list of verses for the weary and tired mum without including this one. It is such an amazing promise from an amazing God who does not want us to try and do it all on our own!! He will renew our strength, He will give us all we need for every moment of everyday and all we have to do is trust in Him. It’s just that simple.

So there you have it my 7 go to verses for a tired exhausted Mum. Write them out. Print them out. Paint them in the sky. Whatever you need to do to get these truths deep down into your heart.

Let me know if you have any other verses that you go to for your strength. I’d love to read them!!

 

Creating a meaningful morning routine from a sleep deprived Mama!

Firstly I want to tell you that this is something that I am still developing.. something that I haven’t perfected but I am still working out what works for me.

Secondly I want to say that my babies have never been good sleepers… my two older girls only started sleeping from 2 1/2 years old and I now have a 7 month old baby boy who is following in his sisters footsteps and not sleeping great…

So why do I think it’s important for me to have a decent morning routine?? Let me tell you..

  1. I think it’s important for me to be awake and functioning to some capacity when my kids wake up. I don’t know about you but if I get woken up by one of my kids and I’m not ready, I can be quite a grumpy morning monster… I can be snappy and not react well to them at all. However if I’m already awake, and have had some “me” time before they wake up, I actually can be a really pleasant mum, who is happy to see them and ready to take on the day with them.
  2. I think the way that I spend the first 15-20 minutes of my day really sets the tone for my whole day. If I have been woken up and then had to rush around getting kids breakfast, dressed and out the door for school, and am still not quite awake, my whole day feels rushed and disorganised. It feels like I can never get on top of anything, and I usually get upset or cranky about the littlest things. However if I have had time with God, over coffee, looked over my planner for the day, and maybe (If I’m lucky and they are still asleep) a little 10 mins exercise, I am ready for the day. My whole day feels like its happening for a purpose, I am generally way more joyful and settled.

Mission Mumma Bible Time

Ok so let me tell you how I set up my mornings… (I would like to just say that I have completely adapted this idea from Hello Mornings, and Kat Lee’s 3 minute mornings, and her philosophy/mantra of having a purposeful and life giving morning that has 3 parts to it – God, Plan, Move)

So the night before I usually set the timer on my coffee machine, have all my God time needs (Bible, pens, prayer journal, notebook…) and my planner all ready to go, so that in the morning I don’t have to make my coffee, or look for my books, everything is waiting for me. I have a nice space set up in the corner of our loungeroom with a lamp and table and big chair. It’s so warm and welcoming for me in the morning.

Mission Mumma Quiet time

I have my alarm set for 6am, although I am currently finding it is not quite enough time, so I’m thinking of possibly setting it a little earlier but let me just say this is completely with grace… My 7 month old does not sleep well, so if we have had a bad night and I have not had enough sleep then I give myself grace and not push myself to get up that early. Sometimes its only 10 minutes that I end up having, or somedays it just doesn’t happen at all… and thats ok.

I always start with my God time. So I either do my daily Bible readings, or write in my prayer Journal, I pray for my kids, my husband and anything else that I need to first. I plan on showing you my prayer journals and Bible Study tools in a future blog so keep your eye out!! – But what I will say is that there are some awesome Bible Apps for your phone that I absolutely love! The main ones I am using at the moment are the “She reads Truth” app, the “First 5” app and the basic “Bible” app.

Then I grab my daily planner and check my to do list for the day. I add anything that needs to be added, make a plan for the day, scheduling when I will be doing the different things. I then pray over my planner. This may sound silly, but the days I forget to do this step, I always have jobs not completed or I will run out of time on certain things. But if I pray over my to do list and schedule, I ask God to highlight anything I need to focus on, or anything I may have forgotten about or anything that i need to take off my list. My day always run so much smoother and more productive when it has been covered in prayer.

Mission Mumma Plan Time

Lastly I have my ‘move’ time. Now this is probably the area in which I have the most flexibility at the moment. If all I can do is have a glass of water and take my multivitamins then thats fine. If I have an extra few minutes and the kids are all still asleep or entertained then I can do 10 minutes of Pilates or mummy exercises that I have found on Youtube. This is an area I look forward to growing in and changing over time. Somedays this step gets postponed until after the older two kids have gone off to school and I then go for a 30 minute walk with baby.

I just wanted to say quickly that on the days that my baby has a bad night and I have not had enough sleep, I don’t push myself and I give myself grace. Maybe that day I do these steps once the older girls have gone to school, or maybe its done gradually throughout the day. It does make the day a little more difficult for me (but lets face it, it was already going to be a difficult day when i’m living on 3-5 hours of sleep). So don’t push yourself too hard. Be realistic!!

How do you get started?
I would have to say baby steps…. If you haven’t done anything like this before, just try getting up 10 minutes earlier and do 3 minutes of each part. Read some verses, pray over your planner or to do list, and do 3 mins of squats or crunches or something… Then slowly grow it, slowly bring it earlier.

So there you have it, that is my current morning routine, and why I think it’s important… If you want more details contact me, I would love to explain more, or you can also check out the Hello Mornings podcast and website. I have also linked below some of the other pages to have a look at if you are interested in having a meaningful, purposeful morning routine.

Let me know if you have any other ideas for me or if you give this a try.

Mission Mumma Morning

God Time :

She Reads Truth Bible

Cotton and co travellers journal

Plan Time :

Kikki K planners

Move Time :

Mummy Excercises

Quick Pilates work out

Revelation Wellness – Faith and Fitness

Podcasts I love to listen to while walking

God Centered Mom

Mom struggling well

She Proves Faithful