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Everything posted by christianmom

  1. Yesterday (Sunday), I wanted to post this, but it was Sunday, so I opted for some family time over computer time :) It was the first day our church was open for services for everyone. Volunteers went for a few weeks before this. Then information was released and it was opened so anyone could attend. But, you did have to register first. It was also only open to the first 300 people. First come, first serve church. It had to be done some way. I'm not complaining at all. I know our church and they have spent this past year preparing for this day. Planning, running tests with volunteers about how to navigate the challenges of making it a safe experience for everyone. I can't imagine those first phone calls between pastors and staff. I used to be in leadership in my church many years ago. I've thought many times how I would have reacted. Probably just stunned silence. So, I'm breathing a sigh of relief that they on their way back to functioning fully as intended. They do good things, they do good work. They help lead people to Christ and change lives. I have friends who've been back at church for months. They go to much smaller churches with not as many logistics or sheer people to manage. We happen to go to what some might consider a mega-church (I've seen much larger though), but it's a mega church compared to any small town church. Sunday mornings for us meant a bit of reunion of sorts with friends after we each survived a busy week. We would see certain friends as we walked through the halls. We'd meet greeters at the doors to the sanctuary and some Sundays my friend, a fellow "dance Mom". would be there we'd hug and update each other on our now college aged kids and what was happening. We'd see people we'd known for years. It seemed every week we would meet someone new! Then we'd go in and find a seat and either save seats for friends or find friends who'd saved seats for us. There was almost always someone around us who was visiting for the first time, and as old as we are, the world gets smaller and smaller so there was always a surprising story or connection to be found. We would sit as close as we could, leaving no seats in between us because during the opening announcements, we'd always do the Sunday morning "scoot" to make room for those who were arriving right as the service was starting. Maybe they were parking, running to the bathroom, getting a child settled in the nursery, etc. We'd leave the end seats of each row open if there were seats, so they could easily find a seat without having to climb over someone in the "dark". We'd always explain it to any new visitors. The reason I'm sitting so close to you is if I don't do it now, I'm going to be in the next few minutes so we might as well just get it over with now! haha! They were probably thinking what is wrong with these people? haha Then they understood. After a few announcements, we'd all turn to those all around us and shake as many hands as we could, maybe even hug if it was a friend. We stood for opening singing, very close sometimes, close to the area where the singers and musicians were. I like sitting up front. I feel more engaged. When you get older, it helps you stay awake, too. hahaha Plus I was raised Baptist and we seemed to fill the back half of the church first! ha! This brings back a memory, of my time in choir at one church I attended. We had a guest soloist, and as a choir, we sang with them, which was a great experience. However, after a few rehearsals, when it came time for the performance, we all had a little trouble singing and not laughing and keeping our composure. It turns out once the stage lights were on (there weren't that many, but just enough), the singer unknowingly would SPIT as they sang and it traveled for miles it seemed. (actually it was just like a shower spray, it was a lot!!) No, not every singer does this. But it was one of those perfect storms. I don't think the congregation/audience could see it at all. But so many of us in the choir could and we were weak with laughter at some points. Thank heavens there were more mature people that kept singing and didn't notice the hilarious situation, haha! I never imagined in my lifetime that there would come a day I would go this long without setting foot in a church. I've been going since I was born, I guess. I wonder if it's changed us all, or are there some people who've managed just fine with online services and sermons? It seems like maybe it's an advantage to be young during all this, because you just adapt and go on with your life. Thankfully, in a church building or watching online or doing nothing but reading your Bible and prayer, we know God has not gone anywhere. We may feel like we've drifted away, but I feel like I've been tethered by Him the whole time. Maybe some days just by my husband reassuring me of hope and showing love. Friends who've been there reminding me to take care of myself not just physically, but mentally, too. I'm guilty of always worrying about others, and putting off myself. I miss my people, I miss church, I miss singing, I miss providing music. I'm going to look for somewhere in the interim that I can attend outside, just to be safe. I pray this time we've had helps me never take it for granted again. What have you done this past year to stay connected and engaged, and what has worship looked like for you? Much Love, Carla ChristianMom
  2. Dear friends, I'll be working on some new blog posts to share and discussion questions...but just last week - I slipped in some pinestraw and fell towards my back steps and stopped myself with my hand/arm/wrist! OUCH!!! So thank heavens for talk to text and autocorrect! Haha I initially I went to the local urgent care and tomorrow (Monday) I have my doctor's appointment with a hand/wrist specialist! Updates later! xoxo Carla
  3. Here we are, now months into living life amidst this pandemic! I'm curious to know from each of you - how are you handling your daily routines? Are your kids going to school in person, or just digitally? Are you going into grocery stores now, or still doing delivery or pickup? Are your churches open, or still online, or not open at all? Are you working from home, or back in your office? How have your devotions changed, or have you started a new habit of them? I'd love to hear how life looks for everyone now - has this hurt or strengthened your faith - what is your outlook for the future?
  4. Hi! Welcome! Wow - 5 kiddos! Bless you! We are just getting this site back up and running after a few years off (of me raising my kids!) Glad to have you here - feel free to share with others!
  5. Thank you for sharing these prayers! Sometimes we can be at a loss for words, even in prayer, and these can be a great place to start!
  6. It's interesting to think about our plans vs. God's plans. I usually envision Jesus just chuckling at our frail attempts to plan every detail of our lives. These days have thrown us all for a huge curveball. A week ago, my daughter and her finace should have had their college graduation commencement ceremonies. In the same college, walking together, launching into their new lives. "Postponed" till August for now, if that works out. My son's Wedding was tomorrow (Sat). Months of preparation, the dress, the flowers and the day after we visited the caterer for a tasting for the reception meal, the stay at home order was put in place. Vendors contacted us, we them, and hope for a date later this year. My Granddaugher's 1st Birthday this past week was held over a "zoom call" with Grandmas and Grandpas, Aunts & Uncles, cousins and friends who should have been here squeezing the love out of her little pink cheeks and showering her with gifts in boxes that she liked better than the gifts. Ha! I'm fine with staying at home, helping flatten the curve, caring for my own family, trying to keep them safe and well so someone else doesn't have to. My heart is breaking for the job loss and stress and worry that is causing. Most of all, the heartbreak of loss of life. You would think there would have been a switch to flip so everything could run along smoothly in the world, while we took precautions to prevent spread of this virus. I'm not a doctor or scholar, so I don't engage in much back and forth of what is correct and what is not. It's crazy to be witnessing this first hand. Be kind to the others around you and help and love them how you can. If you need help, someone to talk to, etc., don't hesitate to reach out to friends, family and those around you. When you talk to someone via phone or online or in person, just like before, you may not know what kind of day they've had. Be sensitive, some of the trials of life go on without knowing or caring we are trying to deal with this virus, too. It surely doesn't seem fair to have to think about or deal with one more thing. Talk to your kids, hug your kids, for a long time. Think about their social media use and consider a different kind of monitoring or engagement. They can't get together with their friends like normal. Ask them who they are talking to, and how they are. Ask about their parents. Suggest they check on friends they may not have heard from in a while. I like the saying "we are all in the same storm, but we are not in the same boat." (I think that's how it goes, correct me if I'm wrong please!). We are all handling this in different ways. What a moment in history to be in the word and recall every bible study you've ever done. Beth Moore, are you there? ha! Shoot I hope she's writing one during or for these times! Watching church online in the comfort of our own homes, gathered together, some of us 2 or more (or more!), and He is with us there. Depending on what you believe, for example. does the Lord let this happen because he wants to see us slow down and not even leave home to engage in worship or hearing His message?) Just some thoughts, and I get too busy to engage in a lot of research or study. But I feel there is so much to be learned during this time. Let me know what plans you've had that have had to be changed?
  7. My Mom was a wonderful woman with a strong faith and I miss her terribly. She passed away 5 years ago, yesterday. It was hard to lose her right before Mother's Day! She died peacefully, and I trust she is with my Dad in heaven and many relatives who've gone before. (Part of me is thankful she's not here to suffer through this pandemic). Every day I still think I want to tell her some random thing. That seems to never go away. She had a wonderful way of showing care and concern for everyone she met and had a wonderful sense of humor. So did my Dad, and I remember a lot of love and laughter anytime we were together, just the 3 of us, or with our family. I hope to instill many of the things she taught me into my children and grandchildren. Her hope for all of her children and grandchildren was that they experience the love of Jesus. I've loved nothing more than being a wife and a mother. It was my greatest hope and dream. More than any career or job. Parenting isn't always easy, but I realize with each generation, we hope are own kids are wiser than we were and learn from their mistakes and ours (and hopefully they will make less of them!) Happy Mother's Day to all our Moms out there! You are blessed! Some quotes from my Mom: Laughter IS the best medicine! Things will look brighter in the morning Listen to the music of the falling rain Do it right the first time, you won't have to do it again. Don't be a quitter, follow through and finish]. Do what you say you are going to do
  8. https://michaelhyatt.com/how-to-balance-remote-work-and-family-life/ Love the business advice and information on this blog! Michael Hyatt: https://michaelhyatt.com/
  9. Would love to share with each other some of each other’s go to favorites for dinner! We occasionally get take out food, especially now to support some of our local businesses. Deciding what to make for dinner each night is always re-energized when sharing ideas!
  10. I've seen a lot of posts online about staying healthy, getting proper exercise and eating healthy during this quarantine!. What are some things you are doing to help you manage meal preparations, eating right and what are you doing for exercise!
  11. Thinking of all of the Moms who "stay at home" Moms and may also work part or full time from home - you were already used to being home - but maybe the transition is to EVERYONE being at home with you now (kids doing digital learning, kids home from college, spouses working from home, etc.) All of our situations are so unique! I am praying for these adjustments and transitions, praying that some things are only temporary and that God will make all things work together for good. What are some of the good things that have come from this extra time at home for you and of everyone being at home?
  12. Thank you to our member ABC for sharing some amazing prayers during this time! Sometimes individually we can't find the right words for our own prayers, and it's nice share with each other what is on our hearts, because we will find many things in common right now!
  13. Reaching out to the Mom's who have transitioned to working AT home who usually don't - Thinking of you and praying for you as you may be about to return to the office or continue to make it work by telecommuting so you can keep observing "stay at home" orders and social distancing during this time. Any advice to other Mom's in this situation? Or do you have something you need advice about or need someone to share ideas with you on how to make working from home during this time?
  14. Beloved and bestselling author Bob Goff provides you with a year's worth of inspiring, unexpected, humble teaching on grace and love that will prepare you for the day ahead. Built on Bob's trademark storytelling and unique way of helping us to see things in a new way, Live in Grace, Walk in Love takes us through an entire calendar year of meditations on how we can step out in love and confidence in every aspect of our lives. Each of the 356 daily devotionals: Include full in-text Scripture references Are 1-2 pages; great to read on your own or with a family! End with thought-provoking questions to encourage journaling and prayer Start each day with these small nuggets of wisdom, or finish your day focused and inspired. This beautiful hardcover book also makes a great gift!
  15. Welcome! So glad to have you here! We have recently updated this site so members are just coming back along with some new ones. There are some interesting old topics and some new ones - take a look around and let us know how you are doing!
  16. What did you "take for granted" even just a few short weeks ago? Many phrases and sayings like this - I've had to clarify with my children somewhere along the way. The most entertaining is since they are now adults, hearing what they thought something meant, and how they messed up the meaning and used it in the wrong way at some point. Teaching a child, or an adult for that matter, to appreciate something or someone in the moment is about as complicated as explaining love, grace, forgiveness, empathy, honor, respect, etc. Its an important lesson and it takes time. Since finding my faith and maturing in it, I've made an effort to be thankful, grateful and appreciative. I didn't understand this as a child. Colossians 4:2 says Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. And 3:15 says Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body, you were called to peace. And be thankful. This current health crisis/global pandemic has me and my closest friends lamenting over the small and large things we took for granted. It's interesting how something like this puts into perspective what is really important. We've been quarantined at home, like many others, and with all members of our immediate family. My daughters, who for many years were at dance and music lessons during the traditional family dinner hour as they were growing up, have been a little alarmed at the emphasis on dinner time in our house right now. Yet, gathering for a meal is a tradition across time and many cultures and an act that feels familiar and comforting to us. If anything, for us right now, it brings us together from where we've scattered in the house, so we grab food, reconnect, watch the news or a movie or just hang out and play with the dog and baby. I've known all along, going through our day to day lives, in my mind, to compare the freedoms we have, to somewhere else - where we couldn't do whatever we wanted, whenever we wanted. This virus and the way it's brought every day life to a screeching halt has made many of us think about what “was”, and the “way things used to be”. We wonder what will *never* be the same again? The future is uncertain and the pain and sorrow this has caused is something I never dreamed. It has humbled me even more. I don't think the list of things I'm realizing that I took for granted will end any time soon. The most powerful ones aren't even about me, it's about others, their sacrifices, what they didn't really "sign up for" when they took a certain job or entered a specific career field. I'm also remembering the things I'm thankful for, good and happy memories. Some I pray we will get to enjoy again! I've also read about changes that might be good for the future! (the first good one I heard a few weeks ago was for those now working at home "so now we know that 3 hour meeting could have been handled over a few emails"??). Fortunately my husband is able to work from home for a while. It's a dynamic he has to adapt to, but the stress of the drive in traffic, the ease of a step outside or playing with the dog a few minutes are all positives he doesn't experience in an office. But he misses the camaraderie with his co workers, the idea sharing and in person discussion, a shared lunch, a quiet office to just think and plan. There are advantages to both. I told my daughter today to think 10 years or so from now, when she hears one of her favorite songs she's listening to now, it will remind her of these days. I know things will be drastically different then, but I hope she remembers the lesson we are all learning, young and old of how easy it is to take things for granted and remember to be thankful in the moment and thankful for all things. What specific things have you realized you really took for granted before all this? It can be something large or small or in between? I'd love to hear your thoughts!
  17. I agree with ABC - you can say you are excited to share with everyone your family's celebration of their marriage. Be short and to the point, but it's a chance to remind your daughter and son in law of how much you love them! If you feel there is someone out there who will be sad they weren't there, you can briefly say/explain it was a small ceremony with just some family members and you wanted to share pictures. Don't be afraid to share how much love you have for them and that you are a proud Mom! You could say the balloon and ultrasound are in celebration of a "special gift" coming soon, who you know will be loved by so many! I'm not sure if you have other grandchildren yet or not - but I can say it is wonderful, and I hope and pray the same for you!
  18. Welcome back! Glad to have you here and happy to see you got the message about the site! Looking forward to connecting with everyone.
  19. Welcome back! i’m glad the message got to you! Glad to hear you are doing well! Enjoy the discussions as time allows! Great to hear from you! Stay safe and many blessings!
  20. From my kid's church at college - March 29, 2020 sermon (before this state was under shelter in place, but already moved to online services):
  21. You, oh Lord, are my refuge You are holy and just You are faithful and righteous You, oh Lord, are my refuge By Your mercy, You cover me Under the shadow of Your wings Lord, in Your presence I'll remain You are forevermore the same You are my refuge, my only refuge
  22. 4 Let not your heart be troubled: you* believe in God, believe also in me. 2 In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you* unto myself; that where I am, there you may be also. *"ye" changed to "you"
  23. Having taken part in many bible studies over the years, reading, memorizing and sharing scripture is a great source of comfort for myself and countless others. Instead of focusing on one particular study right now, please share scriptures you enjoy that might bring reassurance and comfort to others who land here! Colossians 3:12-17 12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. 15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. 17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Colossians 4:2-6 2 Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. 3 And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. 4 Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. 5 Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. 6 Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.
  24. Hi Lillie! Congratulations! I'm thankful for ABC's response to you above^^ Your first child - such an exciting time! I'm mom to 3 and grandma to an almost 11 month old!) We Mom's are never forgetful of our own birth experiences! The first thing I thought of when you talked about a playlist of songs - so wonderful that you have that option! If that is what relaxes you then that is a must! Also - please forgive every one of us Moms out there who can't help ourselves and tell you all our stories, good and bad! I had an epidural with the first and it all went great and no pain, but I also didn't feel much at all. Waiting for it to wear off took some time, but I wasn't running around anywhere anyway, I was too busy learning how to nurse! 2nd child, epidural also, but they had changed it where it just took the "edge off" of the pain and so I could feel to push and I it wore off much sooner. I had planned and done classes for natural childbirth for both, and ended up both times with epidural. My sister had all 4 of hers with no epidural - I wanted to be like her! I had a neighbor who was a delivery room nurse for 31 years and she kept telling me "don't be a martyr, have the epidural" hahaha - all with a sweet spirit of course! Her advice was the Mom's just enjoyed the experience so much more. I have no regrets in my change of plans, and I know it's split about 50/50 among my Mom friends on what they ended up doing. So you do what you and your doctors think is best! I had many reasons I didn't want to have it and literally at the last minute changed my mind. It all depends on a million things - how fast you progress, etc. So I think the best advice is to prepare like you are to not going to have it, but be open to having it if you or doctors feel you need to. I'm not a doctor, of course, so just my opinion. Side note - it was my husband that had more issues with the epidurals than I did - he didn't like needles - he almost passed out! (shhhh, don't tell him I told you) haha! Epidural or not, practicing relaxation techniques was the most helpful thing to me, time in prayer and scriptures, prayers and encouragement from others, etc., and there is nothing more wonderful and miraculous than that moment when you hold your baby in your arms! Keep us posted on how you are doing!
  25. christianmom

    New in Town

    Absolutely one of my favorite movies! Tapioca!

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