Tag Archives: Parents

Giving Gifts to Mom

7 May

Mother’s day is this coming Sunday. So what do you get for that special lady in your life? A greeting card for $5.00, a nice bouquet of her favourite flowers, maybe a gift card to the spa? Sounds good! Done and done. No need to think about that one anymore, I’ve got it covered! This is basically the conversation that happens in many people’s heads when it comes to gift-giving, on any occasion, is it not? Throw together a few items and you’ve got a gift, even if it was a last-minute one. It’s the thought that counts, right? Maybe it wasn’t a last-minute gift, maybe it was one you saved for or put a lot of thought into and made by hand. Either way, usually when we think about gifts, we think about tangible, tactile things that one can hold that cost money. Is there such a thing as another kind of gift? I think that there is one that is actually more valuable to a parent than any gift that can be purchased at the mall. It’s the kind of gift that keeps on blessing a mother or father, each and every day. Your life, and how you live it, is going to be either a blessing or a curse to you mom and dad. Listen in to the Proverbs. God has a lot to say about the way children relate to their parents.

Proverbs 15:20
A wise son makes a glad father, but a foolish man despises his mother.

Proverbs 19:26
He who does violence to his father and chases away his mother is a son who brings shame and reproach.

Proverbs 23:22
Listen to your father who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old.

Proverbs 30:17
The eye that mocks a father and scorns to obey a mother will be picked out by the ravens of the valley and eaten by the vultures.

Yikes to the last one. I for one, don’t want to be picked out by the ravens, whatever that means! You can see that wise children make their parents glad, and fools show that they despise them. Wise children are ones who listen to their parents and obey them, and fools are ones who bring shame and reproach. Wise children do not scorn their parents’ instruction, even when they get old! I want to be a wise child because not only do I want to avoid needless suffering as a result of my own foolishness, but I want to honour my parents, the ones who have raised me to know the Lord, the ones who have sacrificed and cared for me, even when I disobeyed and dishonoured them. I want my life, to be a gift to my mom and dad, one that brings them peace and joy to watch, not sorrow and shame.

Maybe since becoming a mom myself, I’ve felt more attuned to the seriousness of the task of Christian parenting. It’s no small thing, let me tell you! Thank God for His grace, and His guidance because it’s a mine field out there and without the Holy Spirit and the Word, we are lost. Looking back and thinking about what it must have been like for my mom to take care of my brother and I, I can now imagine with a very real understanding what it was like for her to make meals, clean diapers, play games, walk to the park, clean more diapers, make more food, and so on and so on. Her life has been one of sacrifice. She did not go out and do other things, spend money on the most up-to-date clothes, or take big vacations. She used her time, and what little extra money she had to care for us. She built a home and that home had its foundation on Christ. We learned Bible stories, heard scripture read and sung, and were witness to the Lord working in our parents’ lives. And now, with Emma, I have the same prayer and desire that I know my mom did. I want her to know Jesus. I want her to come to see her sin and understand that she needs a saviour. And by God’s grace, that will be the best gift I will ever receive! It will be the gift of seeing Him transform her and make her into His image. I want to watch her grow in godliness and love for Jesus. That life, the one of wisdom, the one that comes to obey the truth and love it, will be the one I will cherish most. Yes, I will also love candies (seriously, I really do love candy!), and I’ll love a bunch of lilies and a card, but nothing will compare to that intangible, wonderful peace that I will have knowing that Emma knows my Saviour.

Can you think about ways in which you’ve not honoured your mom in days past? Maybe, this is a chance to ask her forgiveness, and ask God’s grace to live a life that would be a blessing to her, and to Him. Even with all this “intangible gift-giving” talk, that doesn’t negate doing tangible things to show love! So go on, get out there and pick up something special for your mom. And make sure that that gift isn’t followed by a long season of indifference towards your relationship with her. Remember that the day-in, day-out grind is where love builds its strongest bonds, so seek to show it for the other 364 days of the year.

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The Family

3 Nov

Friends! Happy fall to you all. I’m now a bit late on that salutation seeing as Canadian Thanksgiving and Halloween have already passed and Starbucks has made it clear that CHRISTMAS IS ALMOST HERE!!! For my American friends, are you also experiencing the same influx of red and green into your stores?

Time just keeps on passing not giving anyone a moment to catch their breath. Or maybe it’s just me feeling like I have a million things I want to do and I don’t ever get them all done. One of those million being wanting to keep up with this blog and not being able to. No more apologies, I’ll just keep pressing on. Even though I haven’t been posting as often as I’d like, I have been reading. And studying. And searching for useful and relevant info on things that I need to learn about. And right now, the things that I seem to need to know all pertain to being a mama and wife. So that’s why I’ve decided that this next little roll of posts will be about what I’m learning in the hope that others out there, not just moms or wives, will benefit from me trying to bring together a range of pieces of info that I’ve come across or plan to spend time in.

Why the family? To be honest, I’ve wanted to post on this topic for a long time, not just because it’s something relevant to my current life situation. Family means a lot of different things to a lot of people. To some, the idea conjures up painful memories and experiences that one wishes were forgotten. Maybe a broken home, a difficult childhood with a single parent, abuse at the hands of a relative, the list could go on. To others, family might not have that same exact meaning but it might be one of more superficial interactions and detached relationships. And for some, it can mean everything wonderful and comforting about life. I would guess that for many of us it means a combination of theses things. We all have had painful experiences, we all have imperfect relationships with our families, and we all have longings and hopes for what we wish or hope things could or should be.

Regardless of your personal experience, good or bad, there are probably many questions we have about what families are supposed to be. Are they important? Can we do without them? How should families function if they are to function well and who’s to say what that should even look like? Are traditions and rituals and blood what makes a family? The list of questions could stretch miles! I won’t attempt to position myself as some sort of family “expert”, but as a person with a family, who loves her family (not just my little girl and my husband- but each and every relative and extended member), I care about finding answers to those questions and don’t want to just “see how things turn out”. I want to understand what it takes to repair broken relationships and build new strong ones. I want to find answers to questions I have about what the wrong and right ways are to go about living as a member of a family. I do believe that there are real concrete choices we make every day that have a lasting impact, for better or worse. We may not be able to see 20 years into the future as to where we’ll be with our family relationships, but looking back, there is evidence strewn along the road of time that points to the triumphs and many failures of our families. We can see how divorce deeply hurt our cousins or friends. We can see how marital strife caused deep pain for us as children (and adults). And, if we’re honest, we can see ways that we’ve acted that have alienated, hurt, and damaged our relationships with people we love. In looking to find answers as to what the family is supposed to be, and how we can make ours better as individuals and corporately, I’m starting with the presupposition that there are the right ones out there. And not just out there anywhere, but first and foremost in God’s word. And then, coming from that as the basis, there are many helpful resources in the form of helpful words from others who write/talk about this most important topic in order that people would think rightly about the family, and that right thinking would then lead to right living, for our good, and for God’s glory.

For starters I’m going to link you to a fantastic sermon series by John MacArthur called “The Fulfilled Family“. The series is fairly long but is packed with solid Biblical teaching from Ephesians on the roles of husbands, wives, children, and parents. I’ve listened to all and really learned a lot about many things, namely the great importance that God places on families. I encourage you to head on over there and download a message, or 10. Yes, yes, that’s some clicking and downloading and waiting, but it’ll be worth it, I promise! The truth of God’s word never changes, and therefore even though this was preached a while back, everything that’s said is just as relevant and needed today, even more so in a world where the family is under deadly assault. We don’t live in a society that encourages the and supports the nuclear family. In fact, the fact that we have to call it a “nuclear family” implies something in and of itself. Short-lived marriages and children born out of wedlock are no longer taboo but the norm. This to say that there are going to continue to be many forms of evidence that will begin and have already begun to display how these trends have impacted children, to their detriment and to the fracturing of society as a whole. Anyways, listen on and feel free to comment, and if possible, I’ll try to answer and relevant questions or thoughts.