Things I'm thankful for #2

1) The Bible
2) Salvation
3) Assurance of Salvation
4) A good church to attend
5) A Christian family who are a great support
6) True friends
7) Sunshine that makes you feel happy
8) Rain that refreshes
9) Rainbows to brighten a dark day
10) God's promises
11) A car
12) A driver's license
13) Furniture
14) A computer
15) Sermons online
16) A phone to connect with loved ones
17) Good books
18) Crafts and the fun of Creativity
19) The Beauty of God's Creation
20) Living in a country that doesn't have war
22) God's amazing love
23) Music
24) A Husband who is loving, faithful, hardworking, honest, reliable, loves God, has his priorities right, spends time with his children, spends time with me, spends time alone with God, loves and honors his parents, never hurts me on purpose etc.
25) A wonderful mother and father who have given me a Godly heritage
26) Lovely Christian in-laws
27) Sisters
28) Romans 8:28
29) God's grace is sufficient
30) Prayer

There are so many things to be thankful for! My Mum gave me some advice the last time I saw her. She knew that something was coming up in my life that would be a bit difficult. Her advice was (in short), "Be thankful and enjoy the moment." Then she started to name some of the things that I would have to be thankful about during the difficult time. It gave me a different mindset! There were positives I had never thought of. I am remembering her advice and it has helped me. Instead of focusing on the negative things, I am trying to notice and count all my blessings.


Things I'm thankful for #1

Yesterday I was talking with a friend about how much we have to be thankful for. So I decided to write a list. The reason I'm sharing it is because I read a post on a blog awhile ago about what a lady was thankful for about her husband. It challenged me because some of the things she mentioned are things I just take for granted in my husband!  So hopefully this list might challenge someone else to realize their blessings.
1) I'm alive today!
When I was around 5yrs old I remember stepping onto the road to cross it and a driver slamming on his brakes. I was nearly run over. A few years later, me and my younger sister were swimming at the beach and the tide was going out. We got caught in the tide and nearly drowned. As a teenager learning to drive I had many close calls, and when I did roll my car, I got nothing more than a bump on my head.
2)I'm usually painfree.
3) I can see, hear, smell, feel, walk etc.
4) The ability/energy to run my household.
5) A house to live in.
6) A godly heritage.
7)Appliances that make life easier--oven, fridge, freezer, jug, vacuum cleaner, washing machine etc.
8) Electricity.
9) Laughter.
10) Humor.
11) Smiles. :)
12) Trials to keep us close to God.
13) God is in control.
14) Colors
15) Such variety of foods
16) 3 healthy children
17) Marriage
18) Beautiful Flowers
19) Running water in my house
20) Religious Freedom
There is too many for one post, so will share some more next time!


A Big Lemon

I thought mothers were supposed to teach their children, but sometimes it is the children who teach their mothers!
My 3yr old has a thing where she likes to call people things. For example if she is eating morning tea, she might say "Mummy is a big peanut." or "Esther is a big cracker."
Usually I laugh as I know she is just being silly, but what she compared me to the other day really made me stop and think! After I had made a lemon loaf, Hannah said, "Mummy is a big lemon!"
Ouch! She is right! Sometimes Mummy is a big lemon with a sour attitude and a grumpy voice.
A lemon is the last thing I want to be compared to!
This lesson has stuck with me this week, and a few times when I've had difficulty coping I have prayed... "Lord, help me not to be a big lemon today!"


Ways I Encourage Myself

I listened to a very helpful sermon a while back. It's a bit difficult to share the sermon as there is not a direct link, so thought I would share the notes I wrote down, but they are written in my own words. I hope they make sense! (The sermon was by Jeff Fugate.)

"David encouraged himself in the LORD." 1 Samuel 30:6
There are times when there is no source of encouragement or times when no one understands and we have to encourage ourselves in the Lord.

But first we have to ask ourselves....
Do I want to be encouraged or do I want to wallow in self-pity??
You'll never accomplish the will of God by feeling sorry for yourself.
We all have the tendency to feel sorry for ourselves. We have to want to be encouraged.
You can't do the will of God and be discouraged.

We also have to be willing to control our thinking.
We shouldn't listen to feelings. We must stay on the top side. Refuse to live in discouragement and depression.

6 Ways to Encourage Yourself
1)Remember the blessings of the past.
Write them down. Teach your children what God has done for you in the past.

2) Think of others.
The will of God doesn't focus on me but on others. Think of other people like missionaries etc. who don't have much.
Try and be the encouragement rather than always wanting to receive it. That is spiritual maturity.
One day we'll face those who died for the cause of Christ and how big will our problems seem compared to theirs??

3) Think of the need all around us.
People need Christ. We don't have time for a pity party.

4) Remember when I encourage myself it will encourage others and they in turn will encourage me. (I didn't quite get that point as the way it was said was a bit of a tongue twister!!)

5) Look for the lesson in the trial.
Don't complain, you have a chance to grow.
Nothing can happen that God doesn't allow.

6) Expect problems.
You'll handle them better if you expect them. We have to go through trials to get to the place of blessing. Just like you go through boot camp for military training.

We need to stay on top. Other need it. And it is good for our health.


Time Wasting...

...or Child Training??
A few weeks ago it was Sunday morning and the clocks had gone forward an hour. So it was a bit of rush to get ready for church in time. I told my 2yr old to get her shoes. She refused. I asked her a few times but didn't want to obey. She was determined not to get her shoes. I decided to persist and deal with her until she would obey instead of just getting them myself.
But...I was frustrated. I thought, "I don't have time for this!" Straight away I was convicted. The thought came to me, "This is not time wasting. This is child training."
I've had to remind myself of this phrase many times since then. "Child training not time wasting."
Discipline is the one thing about being a Mum that I find the most difficult. .I've always been a "softie." I would rather look the other way and pretend I didn't see.
I would rather quickly do things myself than take the time and effort to teach my children how to do them.
The main reason is, I just can't be bothered. I'm lazy! It's not nice to admit, but it's the honest truth.
Another reason is, I often don't see the great value of teaching and training my children. And yet it is one of the most important jobs the Lord has given me.
I have to have time for this! I can't afford not to.
Some parenting methods may be time and patience wasting.
For example, telling your child over and over rather than just following through with a consequence. (Sometimes it's more about wisdom than having a huge amount of patience.)
But being consistent and faithful to train our children to listen and obey is a must! 
A lot of what they will be as an adult depends on how much time, training, effort and prayer we have put into them while they're still little.

Correct thy son, and he shall give thee rest; yea, he shall give delight unto thy soul. Proverbs 29:17