Motherhood & Reading God's Word (Part 2)

/ Friday, February 21, 2020


So, you really want to read God’s Word every day but aren’t sure where to start. To begin, we must change our thinking.

Reject the idea that you are too busy or don’t have time.
We know that reading God’s Word is God’s will for us. The Scriptures teach us:

 “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’”
Matthew 4:4
***
Your word I have hidden in my heart,
That I might not sin against You.
Psalm 119:11
***
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.
2 Timothy 3:16-17

And since reading His Word is God’s will for us, then we must see to it. A popular quote by Elisabeth Elliot says, “There is always time to do the will of God. If we are too busy to do that, we are too busy.” Bit by bit throughout the day, we can create the habit, right in the midst of what we’re doing.
Here’s how...

Keep a Bible open all day.
When something is accessible, we tend to use it more often. I remember my Granny always having her Bible open at the dining room table or on the shelf near her seat at the table, ready to use. I remember her facial expression as she would look up at me to answer a question or tell me something. I remember how she would turn the worn pages back and forth. I remember seeing the pages of her Bible marked by her hand-written notes and underlined passages. She diligently studied God’s Word.

So, I’ve learned over the years to just keep my Bible open--on the kitchen counter, on the dining room table, in the school room, etc.--just keep it open to whatever passage I’m reading. For me, the kitchen counter or dining room table are my go-to places for having the Word available all day. These places tend to be the hub of my home anyway, which makes God’s Word easy to read while I’m waiting for something to bake or cook, or for a litte whie at the end of a meal.

Align Bible reading with something you already do.
What is the first thing you can think of that must be done daily? Eating! And that is the perfect time to read God’s Word, which kind of coincides with Matthew 4:4 above, doesn’t it? Read while you eat, and since most of us are eating as a family, read together!

We read our Bibles toward the end of breakfast time each day as the unofficial start to our homeschool day. We’ve invested to make sure each child who is able to read has their own Bible. (For my non-readers, we use a good picture Bible.) We make sure everyone is reading from the same translation and we dig in together. (Note: Never underestimate the power of the Holy Spirit to speak to and influence your children as you read through meaty passages. No need to skip them or alter them. God’s Word is for children, too. He will increase their understanding, just as He does yours!)

Another thing we all do each day is to use the bathroom, yes? And, how many of us moms, if we’re honest, have gone to the bathroom simply for a few minutes alone, or for quiet and refreshing? Well, while you’re in there, get some time in the Word. . .which means the bathroom is another place where you can just leave the Bible open. See how this works?

What should I read?
Before I give my opinion to this question, remember what the Scripture teach us in 2 Timothy 2:16-17:
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine,
for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,
that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.

So, there is no wrong answer. All of God’s Word is good to read.

What I’ve been doing lately is to read all the way through books of the Bible that I’m not familiar with or am trying to gain a more thorough understanding of. I will read just a few verses each day, generally using the headers that are available in most Bibles these days as starting and stopping points. If what I read at one point is something I need a deeper understanding of, I will read it again the next time. I also will take the time to look up other verses that may coincide with the passage for greater understanding before continuing on.

I have read through Exodus, Leviticus, Deuteronomy, John, and Hebrews using this method. I am currently reading the book of Isaiah, bit by bit. The children and I read through the book of John over the summer and fall. This has been so helpful in increasing my understanding, allowing me to soak up God’s Word and not be overwhelmed.

Other places to begin reading may be:
Start with Genesis and move forward.
Read Proverbs and Psalms or begin with one of the Gospels.
Read something you never read like the minor prophets, the book of Jude or Revelation.
Above all, ask the Holy Spirit to guide you and He will.

Memorize Scripture
This is another one that is easily family friendly. I choose Scriptures that are essential to our faith and doctrine as Believers that we learn as a family. We work on memorizing these verses at breakfast or lunch, just working on one verse until we know it before moving on to the next. Some mom’s post Scripture verses up throughout the house to see what they are memorizing regularly: on the fridge, in pretty font on the wall, posted on the bathroom mirror, sticky notes, etc. It will surprise you just how much you are able to retain!

I hope you are encouraged more than ever to read God’s Word regularly. You’d be surprised at how much the Word will resonate with your spirit as you fill it up with what God wants for you. Never underestimate the power of the Holy Spirit as He goes about making God’s Word alive in your heart!

Your word is a lamp to my feet
And a light to my path.
-Psalm 119:105

How do you incorporate reading God’s Word into your daily rhythm?




So, you really want to read God’s Word every day but aren’t sure where to start. To begin, we must change our thinking.

Reject the idea that you are too busy or don’t have time.
We know that reading God’s Word is God’s will for us. The Scriptures teach us:

 “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’”
Matthew 4:4
***
Your word I have hidden in my heart,
That I might not sin against You.
Psalm 119:11
***
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.
2 Timothy 3:16-17

And since reading His Word is God’s will for us, then we must see to it. A popular quote by Elisabeth Elliot says, “There is always time to do the will of God. If we are too busy to do that, we are too busy.” Bit by bit throughout the day, we can create the habit, right in the midst of what we’re doing.
Here’s how...

Keep a Bible open all day.
When something is accessible, we tend to use it more often. I remember my Granny always having her Bible open at the dining room table or on the shelf near her seat at the table, ready to use. I remember her facial expression as she would look up at me to answer a question or tell me something. I remember how she would turn the worn pages back and forth. I remember seeing the pages of her Bible marked by her hand-written notes and underlined passages. She diligently studied God’s Word.

So, I’ve learned over the years to just keep my Bible open--on the kitchen counter, on the dining room table, in the school room, etc.--just keep it open to whatever passage I’m reading. For me, the kitchen counter or dining room table are my go-to places for having the Word available all day. These places tend to be the hub of my home anyway, which makes God’s Word easy to read while I’m waiting for something to bake or cook, or for a litte whie at the end of a meal.

Align Bible reading with something you already do.
What is the first thing you can think of that must be done daily? Eating! And that is the perfect time to read God’s Word, which kind of coincides with Matthew 4:4 above, doesn’t it? Read while you eat, and since most of us are eating as a family, read together!

We read our Bibles toward the end of breakfast time each day as the unofficial start to our homeschool day. We’ve invested to make sure each child who is able to read has their own Bible. (For my non-readers, we use a good picture Bible.) We make sure everyone is reading from the same translation and we dig in together. (Note: Never underestimate the power of the Holy Spirit to speak to and influence your children as you read through meaty passages. No need to skip them or alter them. God’s Word is for children, too. He will increase their understanding, just as He does yours!)

Another thing we all do each day is to use the bathroom, yes? And, how many of us moms, if we’re honest, have gone to the bathroom simply for a few minutes alone, or for quiet and refreshing? Well, while you’re in there, get some time in the Word. . .which means the bathroom is another place where you can just leave the Bible open. See how this works?

What should I read?
Before I give my opinion to this question, remember what the Scripture teach us in 2 Timothy 2:16-17:
All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine,
for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,
that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.

So, there is no wrong answer. All of God’s Word is good to read.

What I’ve been doing lately is to read all the way through books of the Bible that I’m not familiar with or am trying to gain a more thorough understanding of. I will read just a few verses each day, generally using the headers that are available in most Bibles these days as starting and stopping points. If what I read at one point is something I need a deeper understanding of, I will read it again the next time. I also will take the time to look up other verses that may coincide with the passage for greater understanding before continuing on.

I have read through Exodus, Leviticus, Deuteronomy, John, and Hebrews using this method. I am currently reading the book of Isaiah, bit by bit. The children and I read through the book of John over the summer and fall. This has been so helpful in increasing my understanding, allowing me to soak up God’s Word and not be overwhelmed.

Other places to begin reading may be:
Start with Genesis and move forward.
Read Proverbs and Psalms or begin with one of the Gospels.
Read something you never read like the minor prophets, the book of Jude or Revelation.
Above all, ask the Holy Spirit to guide you and He will.

Memorize Scripture
This is another one that is easily family friendly. I choose Scriptures that are essential to our faith and doctrine as Believers that we learn as a family. We work on memorizing these verses at breakfast or lunch, just working on one verse until we know it before moving on to the next. Some mom’s post Scripture verses up throughout the house to see what they are memorizing regularly: on the fridge, in pretty font on the wall, posted on the bathroom mirror, sticky notes, etc. It will surprise you just how much you are able to retain!

I hope you are encouraged more than ever to read God’s Word regularly. You’d be surprised at how much the Word will resonate with your spirit as you fill it up with what God wants for you. Never underestimate the power of the Holy Spirit as He goes about making God’s Word alive in your heart!

Your word is a lamp to my feet
And a light to my path.
-Psalm 119:105

How do you incorporate reading God’s Word into your daily rhythm?


Continue Reading


Written a couple of months ago. . .


I am in a day-by-day season of life where my days aren’t always as predictable as I’d like them to be.  I am mama to 8, my youngest being just 4 months old, and my oldest a few months shy of 17 years old. I have many things going on, at one time, to say the least. If I’m busy doing all the things--late night nursing, homeschooling, diaper changes, helping my husband, keeping my home, teaching teens to drive--where do I have time to study God’s Word?

Throughout my mothering journey, I’ve heard all kinds of things said on the subject. Some will tell women not to worry about reading the Bible during the newborn days, for example, because the Lord will understand the time constraints a little one places on the schedule. If we go that route, we fall into a habit of not reading the Word, convincing ourselves that we just don’t have time.

On the other hand, some will wonder why it is you don’t participate in all the online Bible studies or every small group your church offers. This makes us feel guilty because we aren’t able to keep up with everyone else.

We can also place unreasonable demands on ourselves when it comes to reading the Bible. Somewhere along the way we think that to effectively study and read God’s Word we need these types of things: a friend or group to read along with us, a dedicated reading space, a specified amount of time, complete quiet, special highlighters and pens, no interruptions, a note-taking system, a fancy journal to write those notes in, or a beautifully brewed cup of coffee or tea.

Then we worry about how much we’re reading or what we should be reading. So, maybe we try out one of those “read the Bible in a year” plans that we’ve all seen. We begin the plan, reading huge chunks of Scripture each day, regardless of what we’re able to retain, just in order to check the box. Then life happens and you miss a day. What then? How can you make up all that reading if you are so busy? You try to double up, but you feel overwhelmed. The truth is, doubling up doesn’t work, you’ve lost your place on the plan, so you stop reading altogether. That is the exact opposite of what the goal is meant to be.

While reading plans, study groups, highlighters and coffee can be motivating, they aren’t necessary. And, although motivating, they can be a distraction. I once heard it said that hiding God’s Word in your heart (according to Psalm 119:11) is not a race but a life-long habit. In other words, be consistent and remain committed. Keep it simple; no need to complicate things.

You may be wondering, how do I know what to read? When do I even have the time to read? How do I become consistent in God’s Word? Head over to Part 2 where I’ll share some tips that have helped me, as well as a bit of what I’ve been doing lately. Instead of stressing, remember the main thing is to stay connected to God through His Word.

Click here for Part 2.







I just had my 8th child at the end of the summer, a sweet little baby girl to welcome into our home! Although she is the 5th child to be born in our family since we started homeschooling, this is the first time I’ve had a newborn with high school aged students. And, I must say, this is a game-changer!

You see, homeschooling with a newborn looks different depending upon the season.  My 3 oldest children are 12, 14, and 16 which means they are super helpful with daily tasks. However, when we first started homeschooling, these same children were 4, 6, and 8--and we had a little one born about 4 months in. Some of the advice given to homeschool moms with a newborn on the way may not apply to those who have both older and younger children.

Usually, moms are encouraged to take it slow, to pop in a movie for science or history, and to cuddle as much as possible on the couch reading aloud. I must say, I’ve done my fair share of this over the years, with my little ones. And it continues to be a life-saver  for my children under 8 years old. 

But it doesn’t quite work this way when children are earning high school credit or are a part of dual enrollment at community college. Additionally, my little one was born one week after we began our new homeschool year, so we didn’t have much time to establish new routines. This is what I’ve done to adjust in this season and I hope it helps you if you find yourself in a simliar season as well.

Stick to Tried and True
Now is not the time to change what works for your family life and homeschool! Stick to the natural routines that everyone is used to. Adjust time frames if necessary, but continue going with the flow. For us, this means we start each day with breakfast, Bible, then Math. We’ve begun our homeschool day like this for 8 years and it works for us. Now breakfast might start some days at 9 rather than 8, but the routine is the same.

Repeat Scheduling
Doing the same thing daily (for the most part), and in the same order is a life-saver right now. I used to try to follow the advise of, Language Arts on Mondays and Wednesdays and Science on Tuesdays and Thursdays, for example. Problems arose when something interrupted our week because that meant I’d have to wait until the following week before getting back to that subject. Now, every day (except Fridays) our schedule is the same, with a few exceptions. I don’t have to remember what subject is tied to which day (which is particularly helpful when I don’t know what day it is because my newborn has kept me up all night). Because I’m doing most subjects each day, we are doing a little each day rather than huge chunks of one subject, which is great for my younger children.  And, if a day doesn’t go as planned, I know the very next day I can pick up where I left off.

Increasing Independence
Somehow, a newborn baby sheds light on just how much older everyone else is. So, utilize your children’s independence as much as possible. Mama being out of commission for a couple of weeks is an eye-opener to what assignments they can take on. So, who’s ready to make simple meals? Who can wash the dishes or set the table? Which child can help take out the trash or load the laundry? The newborn days have been a good time for our family to transition into the next level of responsibility for household chores. 

The same idea holds true for schooling. Maybe it’s time for your children to share some of the reading for read alouds, while you do the listening. Sometimes, my older children check their younger siblings’ schoolwork, which frees me to check theirs (think: Calculus and Physics!). My older ones also pitch in with photocopying and filing papers, arts-and-crafts and P. E. activities as well. Let them assist you by taking charge of a few new things.

I hope this has been a help to you, as I am writing from the haze of newborn sleepiness! What ways do you adjust your homeschool life when a new baby is born?

For more newborn encouragement, click HERE.



Me holding baby number 8
My little girl (baby #6) holding her stuffies.

Like mother, like daughter. . .

My liitle girl told me she needed to carry her babies just like me, so we rigged a scarf up to do so.πŸ’žπŸ˜˜πŸ˜
As I tied the scarf behind her back, it occurred to me that this is a reminder to me to be careful of the example I set before my children. The truth is that they are ALWAYS watching.... waaaaayyyy more than I think they are.

As a mother to 5 daughters, I've got lots of girly eyes watching me. My prayer is that my girls follow me as I follow Christ. I pray that I am an example of godly living, that through the help of the Holy Spirit I live out the biblical principals of the Proverbs31/Titus2 woman. I pray they see the value in embracing biblical womanhood, of being wives and mothers who diligently work in their homes and all the blessings that flow from it.

Like Mother, Like Daughter

by on Saturday, December 28, 2019
Me holding baby number 8 My little girl (baby #6) holding her stuffies. Like mother, like daughter. . . My liitle girl told me she n...
{From my Instagram}






We had a birthday this week!! The top set of pictures is the last day of 7 years for my little ol' boy! Reflecting over his precious life is like 😘😍😁😊 on the outside, but πŸ˜­πŸ’™πŸ˜­πŸ’™πŸ˜­πŸ’™ on the inside! #sogladtoseehimgrow #theygrowtooquickly

I am so blessed to have the gift of being his mama. #lovemotherhood

You may or may not know . . .

-he is our rainbow baby and that God used his life to speak to our hearts in such a mighty way. #forevergrateful

-people never counted the members of our family until I was visibly pregnant with him (or S T A R E D at us, or made comments/jokes/rude remarks etc., or started talking fertility in the middle of the grocery store). #nowords

-of out 8 children, he looks most like me, but it's hard to see because he blends in so well with the others. 😁 #Husbandhasstronggenes

-God brought him through a very major surgery just shy of 3 years ago, and I still struggle with the words to write about it. #WonderWorkingGod #prayersstillappreciated

-he is a ray of sunshine and will leave you choked up and smiling  all at the same time. #tenderhearted
Y'all, what can I say? I'm a mama who loves her son!

On his birthday, we began the day blowing up birthday balloons and thanking God for his life!!!! {{E I G H T  Y E A R S}}
Husband was home that day, so no need to wait for the evening for the festivities to begin...which means birthday cake and presents right after breakfast, PLUS #Husband announced no school today!  #homeschoolperk😁 #goodcall #principalmove

Thank you all for all of the love you've shown him today!πŸ’ž He has been beaming all. day. long!!!!πŸŽ‰πŸŽŠπŸŽ‚
Birthday pictures are below.

#number4 #lastdayat7 #firstdayateight #breakfastcelebration #myson #motherandson #myboyandme #mamalovesyou #mybaby #birthdaythings #growingup #thankGod #suchablessing #capturingmoments #loveveryday #love #noidlebread



Birthday Boy

by on Saturday, December 07, 2019
{From my Instagram} We had a birthday this week!! The top set of pictures is the last day of 7 years for my little ol' bo...



On Wednesday, August 28, 2019,
God blessed our family with a new baby girl!!
She was born at 10:14 am
7 lbs, 4.5 oz, 20 inches

This makes 8 children in our family: 3 sons and 5 daughters. My husband and I are so grateful for this newest gift from God, as only He can do all things well!

This year, there have been many changes for my family, lots of journeys, with enough twists and turns to qualify to be a reality TV show. I hope to update and share in this space again very soon! All in all, I know the One who is writing this story and so I will put my trust in Him.





New Baby Girl!

by on Thursday, August 29, 2019
On Wednesday, August 28, 2019, God blessed our family with a new baby girl!! She was born at 10:14 am 7 lbs, 4.5 oz, 20 inche...
THE TINY TRUTHS ILLUSTRATED BIBLE:
The Incredible Story of Who God Is, Who You Are, and Who You Were Made to Be

Created By: Joanna Rivard & Tim Penner
The Tiny Truths Illustrated Bible is a great way to present God's Word to young children. I would say it is perfect for little ones between the ages of 2 and 7. All of my little ones in that age range flock to this book every time I pull it out. They LOVE the pictures! And the truth is, I do, too!! They are bright and colorful, and it's nice to see Biblical illustrations that are more culturally diverse.

{Although Biblical illustrations are not necessary, and none of them could be called completely accurate, what we do know is that most are grossly inaccurate. Most illustrations depict people of Anglo-Saxon, when the entire Bible takes place in present day Meditterranen, Northern African, and Arabic countries. That eats at me from a historical perspective. Anyway, the point is the pictures are surprisingly refreshing!}

This children's Bible is a collection of select stories, 15 from the Old Testament and 18 from the New Testament. Although is is heavily paraphrased, it is very well-written. In general, the integrity of each story is maintained (some discrepancies here and there) and the stories are clearly retold. I do wish that each story included the actual Scripture reference so that children know where to find the entire account in the real Bible, understanding that it was recorded there first. I am a firm believer that children's ears should grow accustomed to hearing the Word of God to build familiarity with it. Because of this, we use children's Bibles as supplemental only.

At any rate, this is a great supplement to family Bible time! Children will be drawn to the pictures and its simple narrative--most of my little ones can read it on their own. I'm glad we have a copy!

An excerpt from the back cover:
"This Bible connects each individual story to the next, clearly showing how all the stories of the Old and New Testament fit together to tell the one big story of God's great love for his children. The Tiny Truths Illustrated Bible helps children discover:
-Who God is--the one who made everything and everyone
-Who we are--his children, whom he loves no matter what
-What we were made for--to love God and others"

Enjoy!



(I received a copy of this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers <http://booklookbloggers.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.)
Powered by Blogger.