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Young people - How teachable are you? Do you eagerly receive from older Christians in your life? Or do you roll your eyes and think you know better? Do you seek out thoughts from those older and wiser, or do you surround yourself with young people who agree with you? I was a stiff-necked youth who thought I knew it all - trust me, the warnings in Proverbs are there for a reason. Having a teachable spirit is a mark of growing wisdom. If you're young, learn to be a listener. "A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion." (Proverbs 18:2) ~ Stacy McDonald

A lesson in selflessness  

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When I was pregnant with my first son, a wise mother of five told me that you don't realize how selfish you really are until you have children. When a baby is born he is helpless, incapable of doing anything for himself. Sometimes it seems that the little baby is an energy sucking machine. And just when you think you have nothing else ot give, he needs cared for again. It truly is a test of selflessness for the parent. I didn't understand what she meant back then. I did not think I was a selfish person. But I find myself face to face with my own self-serving desires every day. She was so very right.

Hymn "OUR BEST"  

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Words: S. C. Kirk, 1912.

Hear ye the Master’s call, “Give Me thy best!”
For, be it great or small, that is His test.
Do then the best you can, not for reward,
Not for the praise of men, but for the Lord.
Every work for Jesus will be blest,
But He asks from everyone his best.
Our talents may be few, these may be small,
But unto Him is due our best, our all.
Wait not for men to laud, heed not their slight;
Winning the smile of God brings its delight!
Aiding the good and true ne’er goes unblest,
All that we think or do, be it the best.
Night soon comes on apace, day hastens by;
Workman and work must face testing on high.
Oh, may we in that day find rest, sweet rest,
Which God has promised those who do their best.

A mother's love  

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I loved you the minute I heard you were coming. I loved you the minute you were born; then I saw your face and fell in love some more. You were only a minute old, but I knew I would die for you and to this day I still would. When you choose to have a child, you make a conscious decision to allow your heart to walk around outside of your body.

What a Mother Must Sacrifice…  

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Want to be challenged to be a better wife/mother/teacher? Read this article..... it will stop you in your tracks; it did me.

What a Mother Must Sacrifice…

Houses may be bought, built, or borrowed.

But homes can only be made, and that with bits of ourselves.

Or so the ducks told me.

They told me without a sound, just simply as they preened and nestled, a painting, oil on canvas. The children press in close too, for a better look at Alexander Max Koester’s painting Ducks, and I read aloud the caption below the brushes of color.

“Mother ducks pick feathers from their chests to line their nests.”

see the rest of this article here.

Lessons from Mary Poppins  

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I just finished watching Mary Poppins with my young'uns. It never ceases to amaze me the misplaced priorities represented in Disney's movies. However, I had not noticed before in the older movies.

It struck me that in Mary Poppins, the one person who was not expected to spend time with the children was their own mother, Mrs. Winnifred Banks. Feminism at work again. Subtle. But present. After all, she was busy with important work: the liberation of women from the dominion of men!

My children actually identified this before I did by remarking "She's not a very good mommy, is she?"

My children continually amaze me.

answers to the ills of modern times.  

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The following is a statement containing answers to many of the ills of  modern times.

The other day, someone at a store in our town read that a
Methamphetamine lab had been found in an old farmhouse in the
adjoining county and he asked me a rhetorical question, "Why didn't
we have a drug problem when you and I were growing up?"
I replied, I had a drug problem when I was young: I was drug to church
on Sunday morning. I was drug to church for weddings and funerals. I
was drug to family reunions and community socials no matter the weather.
I was drug by my ears when I was disrespectful to adults. I was also
drug to the woodshed when I disobeyed my parents, told a lie, brought
home a bad report card, did not speak with respect, spoke ill of the
teacher or the preacher, or if I didn't put forth my best effort in
everything that was asked of me.
I was drug to the kitchen sink to have my mouth washed out with soap
if I uttered a profanity. I was drug out to pull weeds in mom's garden
and flower beds and cockleburs out of dad's fields. I was drug to the
homes of family, friends and neighbors to help out some poor soul who
had no one to mow the yard, repair the clothesline, or chop some
firewood, and, if my mother had ever known that I took a single dime
as a tip for this kindness, she would have drug me back to the woodshed.
Those drugs are still in my veins and they affect my behavior in
every­thing I do, say, or think. They are stronger than cocaine,
crack, or heroin: and, if today's children had this kind of drug
problem. America would be a better place.
God bless the parents who drugged us."

Together is better: "Stranded" by Matthew Price  

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Leaving a Legacy... I couldn't say it better myself.  

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Grace's Secret Weapon  

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Sweet Grace explains in her post about a concept that transformed her marriage. Wonderfully put, it was a delight to read. I encourage you to chech out her blog Grace is Blessed by God.

the true nature of a woman's strength  

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I thought I would share this poem with you. I read it on the blog simply yin and was deeply moved. How true it is. How often we as wemon mistake the true nature of our strength.

A strong woman works out everyday to keep her body in shape, but a woman of strength kneels in prayer to keep her soul in shape
A strong woman isn't afraid of anything, but a woman of strength shows courage in the midst of her fear.
A strong woman won't let anyone get the best of her, but a woman of strength gives the best of her to everyone.
A strong woman makes mistakes and avoids the same in the future, a woman of strength realizes life's mistakes can also be God's blessings and capitalizes on them
A strong woman walks sure footedly, but a woman of strength knows God will catch her when she falls
A strong woman wears the look of confidence on her face, but a woman of strength wears grace
A strong woman has faith that she is strong enough for the journey, but a woman of strength has faith that it is in the journey that she will become strong

For the love of a doll  

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I cuddled the tiny little doll in my arms, swaying back and forth.

She was perfect... beautiful.

My newly-adopted cousin had pulled my name in the gift exchange, but I suspect that it was my Aunt Linda who had in fact chosen the lovely little treasure in my arms. Some feelings cannot be expressed in words. My aunt must have understood that as she looked down at me as I was caressing the beautiful golden curls of my Christmas gift.

I named her Sally. She was my precious little treasure. She was like a real baby. Her little bottle could be filled with water and she would actually drink it. Then her soiled diaper could be changed. I felt like I was a real Mommy. It was as if  my greatest dreams had come true.

I packed Sally with me to play. I brushed her hair and changed her clothes. I even took her into the bath with me, then wrapped her in my baby blanket and tucked her into bed with me to sleep.

She was my special show-and-tell in Kindergarten. Much to my dismay, Teacher said I could not keep her in the class room unless she had my name on her. And she handed me a permanent marker. I wrote my name “SaRAh A.” with a backwards “R” on her forehead, the only place I could find that didn’t have clothes covering her, since I also wasn’t permitted to undress her in the classroom. I was very angry at the teacher that she had forced me to ruin my beautiful little baby. I came to greatly dislike that teacher.

I tried everything later to get the permanent marker off, but to no avail. She was ruined. I cried, but finally had to accepted that I could not change it. And I accepted her the way she was; I still loved her in spite of what had happened to her.

When I was six I decided to wash her hair when I was bathing with her. It was disastrous. Apparently her hair was not intended to be washed. All the beautiful tight little curls unfurled and stood on end like a stiff afro. Again I cried. But I could not undue it. By this time I had come to grips with the fact that my doll was not perfect, but she was still my doll. I tried to make up for her afro by tying her hair in pointy pony tails, or covering it with a bandanna.

When I was nine, Momma taught me to sew. I took Sally’s little white baby dress (which I thought looked like a wedding dress) and sewed a little white pearl button onto it’s front. I thought it was a great improvement.

I don’t remember if I had other dolls growing up or not. If I did, they didn’t leave an impression: Sally is the only one I remember.

As I grew older, Sally moved from my bed with me to a little cubby hole at the front of my bunk bed. Wrapped in my baby blanket, I knew she was safe there. And when I needed a good cry, as all teen girls do, I would pull out my baby Sally and my blanket and hold them tight.

When I was sixteen I received a Hope Chest for Christmas. Soon Sally was lovingly tucked away to wait another little girl who would, some day, love her as her own while she dreamed of becoming a mommy.

That day has not yet come. So far, I only have boys, who in classic boy fashion, think she is very funny looking. But once, when he thought I wasn’t looking, I saw one of them lovingly caressing her hair and rocking her to sleep. The men in my family love babies.

Today she isn’t far from me: I keep her in my top dresser drawer. And on a hard day she can still make me smile.

And remember.

Remember that this is what I dreamed about all those years ago.