This testimony feels ancient now, but it is a big part of our family’s story. What people didn’t get to hear is that a year later, the people who wanted to buy the house wrote thanking me for asking to be released from the contract. They had a sudden turn of events and thanked me for listening to God. It increased their faith that God was leading them, too, despite the disappointment at the moment. God is a good (and a great) real estate agent!
REAL ESTATE AGENT
I sat in a room with 80 young kids one night. Oh, my word, the world hasn’t yet seen what God can do with a group of children who are hungry for him. One girl said to her friends that her knee was hurting, and they immediately laid hands on her, and was healed. Her response? “Cool.” At first, I wasn’t sure how to process the flippant response, but I heard Holy Spirit say, “Because the supernatural is natural to her.” So powerful!
Encounter as a family with fear: Resolving Fear – YouTube
God has been speaking to me a lot lately about Him being our help in our time of need. Psalm 46:1 – “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in times of trouble.”
He reminded me of a situation that happened when we first moved to Redding. I fell asleep the moment my head hit the pillow only to be woken suddenly a few minutes later by the sound of talking outside my window. I was annoyed that people would carry on a conversation so loud at midnight. I rose to look out and found what appeared to be a girl in an intoxicated state trying to refuse the advances of a male inside a car. My spirit was now wide awake as I watched. I didn’t know if I should call the police, run out there and bang on the window or what. Suddenly I realized I was to pray. I began to pray for her like she was my own child in danger. She went with him into this condo across the street. I could tell she was trying to resist but was too drunk to be firm. My prayers only increased, and this fire came over me to defend and cover her in the spirit. About five minutes later she ran out of the house and safely got into her car.
I have thought about this countless times over the years. That girl never knew I was praying for her, but God woke me to stand with her in the spirit realm and be her covering. I wonder just how many times God has awoken others to pray and cover me over the years. We will never know this side of heaven just how much God is at work in our lives through others.
What would this generation look like if they were taught (by you) to stand on Psalms 46:1 with great faith? Read the verse, talk about it, unpack it, act it out, role-play, talk about real life situations, remind them as they walk out the door… just make sure you DO IT so that they can grab a hold of it.
From the time Ellie was itty-bitty, she would ask me to buy her stuff. I am not a materialistic girl, and the best way to get me to save money is to give it to me because I won’t spend it. I am frugal to the core. Her requests bothered me, and I began to view her as materialistic. I spent countless hours training her to stop asking for things as I saw it as a character issue. One day I realized, oh my goodness, gifts were her love language. All those times, I pushed her away and scolded her when she was not really asking for the toy but wanting to feel loved. I came to her in tears and repented. She smiled the biggest smile, finally feeling understood. Now when she asks, I see it as my clue that she needs some lovin’. If I have to say “No” to her, I assure her of my love and that she means the world to me, though I am not able to buy her that item right now. I handle the request with much more sensitivity than I did before. I also proactively look for ways that I can give her little gifts. It is never the price tag that matters to her; it is the love through it. I am often leaving little things on her bed with a note attached. The other children only have a problem with it when their tanks are low. When their tanks are full to overflowing, they have no jealousy or sense of injustice that their sister is getting more gifts than they are.
God woke me early and revealed something deep within my heart. By the time I was done, I was in complete awe over the revelations and His love that redeems every part of my story. Hours later, a couple came to me for parent coaching. When I asked what they hoped to get out of our time together, the dad began to explain the EXACT same situation with his daughter that God had spoken to me about hours earlier.
I want you to see this – God is sufficient to redeem all things. It is who He is, but how GLORIOUS is it that we get to partner with Him in our parenting so that we can help our children deal with owies IN childhood, so that hurts don’t become adult-sized woundedness, lies don’t become adult-sized strongholds, and offenses don’t become adult-sized bitterness. KUDOS to this dad for doing the hard things so that his daughter doesn’t need to reap the fruit of it for years.
For Hudson’s 8th-grade mission trip, he was offered a chance to work in the church nursery and would tell me about this boy named Micah. His parents took my parenting class, so I reached out to Kelly to tell her how precious it was that they had connected. She said Micah talks about Hudson all the time. Clearly, God was on the connection, so we decided to get them together. When Micah came running out the door to greet us, I was so taken aback by how much he looked like Hudson at that age. Their bond is precious, and I am so thankful for the scores of men who have sown into Hudson over the years and that he has a grid and understanding of what it means to sow into someone’s life. It is so fun to watch your child receive and then grow up to be the one who values passing that gift onto someone else.
This is how I taught my four toddlers how to grow in self-control during story time at the library. I figured it was an excellent place to train them because no one would notice either way. I sat them down at home and talked about the librarian. I asked Lauren to stand up and share the story of her birthday party. As she was talking, I began to interrupt, wave my hands, hang on her, and be super silly. Then I asked Emma to stand up and share what she had for lunch, and I did the same thing. Yes, we were all laughing hard, but we talked about how awkward it is to be trying to share and have people be disrespectful and rude. I role-played being the librarian reading a book. I taught them how to fold their hands and zip their lips. We talked about how we can be crazy loud monkeys at the park, but a library is a place where we use self-control and show respect. I was armed with training and ready to test it out. Before getting out of the van, I reminded them of the rules and what I expected. I praised them ahead of time, letting them know I believed in them. We entered, and chaos broke out as expected. A couple of times, they began to get up, and I would fold my own hands to model for them what I expected. If they were talking, I would motion to zip my lips, point to my ears, and then intently listen to the librarian. If they attempted to get up, I would give a firm no-no motion with my head. If one ran away, I would go after her and pick her up and set her back down. I would whisper that we are listening to the story. It took us three weeks before my children fully understood but let me tell you, the JOY they brought to the room was priceless. I noticed other moms trying to get their children to start listening, too. They got to enjoy the story because they were taught how to pay attention and show respect. I also had them go up to the librarian at the end of each story time and thank her for reading to them. The first time she had a tear in her eye and said, “I dread story time each week. It is the worst part of my job. Thank you for noticing my effort.” I don’t know about you, but as a mom, that isn’t okay with me. By the time school started, they were way ahead of the game because we had already gone after knowing when to be still and quiet and how to listen when adults are teaching/reading. It is training like this at an early age that sets them up for success down the road.
I recently hosted a series of parenting classes at the local rescue mission for moms in crisis with drugs and alcohol. In all honesty, I said yes fully expecting it not to work. I told the manager I would do it once and then we could regroup. I was actually expecting to fail thinking there was no way these keys would work for them in their situation, but I was excited to get in there and pull on heaven for the keys and strategy for them. To my surprise, not only did the parenting classes work (ha!), but it began to transform not only the women but the whole house. God highlighted five women to pull in further and mentor them. We met every week and the most glorious thing happened in our last meeting. I began to prophesy over each person and this powerful presence came into the room. Every single person (even staff) began to weep as we all realized *I* was not the one who He was going to give the keys to, but them!!! These women are learning how to be a Daughter, change the atmosphere around them and pull on heaven for the keys for others in their shoes. I am not sure I have ever witnessed the tangible move of the Holy Spirit like that before. These women are the heroes of their family line, they are the ones chosen, called and anointed to change the direction and lead the way for others to follow!
I was in one of my go-go-go modes and feeling frazzled by all that needed to get done. My daughter came to me so sweetly and said, “Mom, is there anything I can do for you because you really NEED to rest?” She was so gentle and kind but serious about it. She is only SEVEN but understands the concept of staying in a place of peace, rest, and trusting well. It would be easy to partner with feeling like a hypocrite in trying to teach my children about the Kingdom when I still struggle with things, but my kids will never have the years of trauma and emotional baggage I did as a child. While I am unlearning things, they are learning them for the first time at a young age. It is OKAY that I am teaching them about their Father when I am still learning. It is also OKAY that they are surpassing me in many (many) areas already. I think that is awesome, and I welcome the voice of a seven-year-old to remind me that it is okay to rest. She is a world changer and often changes mine!
I received this from a mom who took our online class: “DON’T GIVE UP HOPE!!! If you’d have told me two days ago, that my teen daughter would talk to me till 1 am in the morning, I’d have said it was impossible. If you’d told me that my defiant, self-harming, oppositional girl would also hold me tight and hug me for almost a full minute, I’d have cried, longing for you to be right. If you’d told me that this self-proclaimed atheist girl would tell me that she is ‘giving God another shot,’ I’d have wept, thinking that day would never come. YES… all those things happened last night. I was the hopeless person on this FB page all the time. Some of you have supported me so much through this hard journey and remember my girl. I just HAD to take time to write here that THIS ACTUALLY HAPPENED!!! She is still proceeding with caution, and I am parenting her with SOOO much grace and mercy, and love. DON’T GIVE UP HOPE!!!”