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Monday, December 10, 2012

For My Surviving Mamas

When someone asks how you're doing, do you ever respond, "We're surviving," and then add a little sarcastic chuckle directly following? Well, I have...more frequently in the past year than ever. Life is full of trials and hardships, challenges and disappointments. Financially scraping by, barely making it emotionally, running on coffee and Pinterest (hey Pinterest energizes me!). Well let me just say, SURVIVAL MODE SUCKS.

We are not destined to just survive. We are destined to Flourish. We should have an abundance of joy and peace no matter how much money we have in our bank accounts, no matter how much sleep we've gotten, and no matter how many things have gone our way that week. So...why don't we? Why don't I?

First I think it's because we are humans..We know in part, we see in part and gravity tends to keep us from looking up at Jesus. I think that is the key to living according to the Kingdom--setting your sights on things above (Colossians 3).

I came up with a list of things to help keep focused on what really matters. Thought I'd share it with you:)

1. Spend time daily in the Word. Even if it's 5 minutes. The ideal start to my day is coffee in one hand and Bible in the other. Meditating on truth for me is the beginning of intimacy with Him. It opens my ears to truth, to His Voice. It opens my mind for revelation from above. I'm going to start trying to end my day in the Word also, or even with a good book about Him.

2. Know thyself. Socrates was wise. It is wise to know your weaknesses. How do you get weary? More recently it was we all got sick. Before that, it was having a lot of different events going on. Sometimes I can just feel the weariness creeping in. I begin to think I don't need to spend time reading, I need to do that load of laundry or make another hat! That should be the red flag. When that happens maybe turn to the Lord and say, "Remind me that I need Him and help me desire what I need the most."

3. Slack! I picture this rope being pulled extremely tight..I'm on one end. Pulling or being pulled. The rope being my life and all the things I have going on. Too tight for anything else. This is a harder one for me.  I love all the things I do. But then there's no room for time with Ben. Or time for myself. Or time to dance. Or just simply be. Whether it's giving responsibilities to someone else or saying to heck with the laundry one day. We all so desperately need to simplify our schedules.

4. Habits. Check out Ann Voskamp's blog. She has so many great articles on building habits, which to me is really having discipline. Doing the same things everyday at the same time every day. Like meditating on Scripture. Exercise. Play an instrument. An activity with your children. Praying for your husband. You get the point, but seriously. www.aholyexperience.come will rock your world in all the right ways.

5. Schedules.  This has helped me immensely get a grip on the domestics. I try to have a meal schedule and cleaning schedule. www.imperfecthomemaking.com has some great printables for meal scheduling and grocery list making. I found an awesome cleaning chart that has helped me big time from this fellow blogger: http://tipsandpix.com/?p=76. I have stayed way less overwhelmed this way. I never follow it perfectly but it is better than no list. Doing a load of laundry automatically every morning helps. This even goes along with the habit thing. Try to do a load of laundry every morning for 2 weeks. It will help build that habit into your life. It can be as simple as that. It may seem a little trivial, but even being caught up on laundry frees mind space to think about higher things... :)

I love the number 5 so I'll stick with that. I seem to fall away from these things that have helped me in so many ways but I believe as time goes on, I am getting better and better. Isn't there some scripture about that somewhere? We are a work in progress? That he is faithful to complete?? :) Hang in there. I don't want to simply survive.
May I say a little prayer for us?  Lord, revive us from that state of surviving. That we would be fully alive and awake to all of your goodness within every moment of our days. Lead us by quiet streams, far and help us to stay near to that quiet place with you, with our eyes on things above.

Please Please Please feel free to share anything that helps you live more abundantly!

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