By Heather Ledeboer | Category: Super Sales
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Posted Thursday, November 1, 2012
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By Heather Ledeboer | Category: Family Focus, Pursuing God
As I shared with you last week Tuesday, I want to encourage you to see your situation, your family, and your life from a new angle by introducing you a few different women who have impacted me. Each of their lives remind me of the beauty that can only come out of adversity and their stories encourage my heart to refocus while living and loving more richly.
Saying yes: a dying mother’s perspective
When you say “no” to your child, is it typically:
1) to set a healthy boundary, or
2) out of selfishness?
Some moments are monumental. For me, the question concerning the origin of my parenting denials was one of them. I can remember the exact moment that my mind was first stretched to consider my own parenting selfishness: through the prompting of a dying mother. It was a quiet evening as I relaxed on the couch with my laptop in front of me. I watched the video of a mother of 2 named Rachel who had fought terminal cancer for 4.5 years speak honestly and openly on the meaning of life and why she says, “death is not dying.” During her talk, there are many profound truths that Rachel spoke of that cut to the heart of what we believe and her transparent self reflection affected me deeply.
In particular, I was struck by this statement and how closely it mirrored my own heart. Rachel said,
“I have found that I say “no” an awful lot and when I took an honest look at myself, I realized I that was saying “no” because it was inconvenient to me. I don’t want them to jump on the bed, because that means I will have to tidy it again. I don’t want to give them a snack, because that means I have to get up from checking my email to get it for them. I don’t want to do that craft now, because that will be another mess to clean up. Hear it? Me. Me. Me. And now when I know my days are few, I find myself saying yes a lot more. Yes you can have that cookie. Yes you can jump on the bed. Yes let’s make that craft . . .“
From that moment on, I was changed–not perfect–but changed. Inquiries from my children began filtering though a selfishness scale and I started to ask myself “Is there a solid, logical reason to say no to this request?”
Allowing this question to filter my answers has allowed for barefoot moments on the beach and swallowing snowflakes.
It has invited creative wardrobe expressions and inventive menu options.
In short, it has enriched our moments and helped create unique memories. It has allowed grace to flow in and encouraged my own selfishness to be bridled.
Lest you fear that my home has become a free-for-all haven for every childish whim, let me assure you of the contrary. In our home we strive for healthy boundaries, age-appropriate responsibilities and consistent, loving discipline (again, we are not perfect, but this is our steady, guiding goal).
Nothing helps realign priorities like perspective. The words of Rachel were the exact perspective I needed. Perhaps they will be for you as well. I encourage you to find a quiet hour and watch and be changed as I was, I promise you won’t walk away unchanged.
After you watch, I’d love to hear your thoughts. Where you challenged? In what way?
*Rachel Barkey (shown above) went home to her Lord on July 2, 2009 at 37 years of age. Rachel is survived by her husband Neil and her children Quinn and Kate.
Posted Tuesday, October 30, 2012
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By Heather Ledeboer | Category: Super Sales
Messy bottle feedings got you down? Feel like your always chasing down a rag or dirtying a fresh blanket? You may not have discovered Bunchees yet! Bunchees Baby Bottle Bibs are an ingenious mom invention that will chase away your drippy baby bottle blues!!
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Posted Thursday, October 25, 2012
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By Heather Ledeboer | Category: Family Focus, Pursuing God, The Journey of Motherhood
I’d like to encourage you to see your situation, your family, and your life from a new angle. In the next few weeks I am going to introduce you to a woman who has impacted me. Each of their lives remind me of the beauty that can only come out of adversity and their stories encourage my heart to refocus while living and loving more richly.
Before I share the lessons I learned from the first woman, I’d like to invite you to meet her and see what lessons her story might speak to your heart. It won’t be a quick lesson. The video is almost an hour long. But I have a feeling it will remain with you for a long time. I’d encourage you to grab a cup of tea, a few tissues and curl up on the couch with your laptop or ipad or find a quiet moment with your computer. Or bookmark it and watch it today during nap time or perhaps tonight after your kids go to bed. I’ll follow up next week Tuesday with the lesson I took away that has left me forever changed.
Meet Rachel: a mother of two who, at the time of this video, had been fighting terminal cancer for about 4.5 years. Listen to her speak honestly and openly on the meaning of life and why she says, “death is not dying.”
Posted Tuesday, October 23, 2012
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By Rachel Steele | Category: Pursuing God, The Journey of Motherhood
Fear settles itself in and is left undisturbed for quite sometime long before I hear it breathing. It reminds me of my cat, Ewok, who likes to sneak inside when I open the door and I’m too distracted by a screaming baby or have my hands full with grocery sacks. She hides under the bed awhile and stays out of sight until she thinks it’s safe to emerge. She silently makes the leap and nestles into my pillow. I find her hours later curled up, warm, purring and releasing tufts of black fur into the crater she’s created on my white down comforter. If I’m lucky, I find her before she’s left wet lick marks where I lay my head at night, and we all know what body parts cats lick! I immediately disrupt her cozy slumber and place her back outside.
Fear is the same way and often lurks and lingers in my mind without notice until one day I explode or maybe I should say implode. If I was on better guard, less distracted, I may have noticed it sooner or never let it creep in to begin with. I often struggle with feeling intimidated, insignificant, insufficient, incompetent and the list goes on.
All of these words start with the same prefix, “in”. They all start with the same letter, “i”. Where do these feelings come from and why? Well, my answer was right there in front of me, plain, easy to read, literally, the actual word! When I focus inward, focus only on myself, and begin to wallow around in my own self-pity, I’m swinging the door wide open for fear to come on in and make itself at home. Then I let it stay for dinner, then it rolls out it’s sleeping bag and stays a couple of nights, and before I know it, it’s an ill-mannered house guest staying indefinitely. I read a good book a couple of years ago entitled, The Gift In You. It is written by Dr. Caroline Leaf who states, “Love and fear are the root emotions, and all other emotions grow from these…They (Scientists) have found a deeper system in the brain concerned with positive love emotions and negative fear emotions. They have discovered that these two systems cannot coexist, that at any one conscious moment, we will be operating in one or the other for each cluster of thoughts we think.” —Dr. Caroline Leaf, The Gift In You.
I must be operating in fear, absorbed in myself, in order for the dark clouds to start rolling in, raining down little droplets of intimidation, then steady rains of insufficiency, and then downpours of insignificance. Fear is being afraid of the uncertain. Faith is knowing that God will never let you face those uncertainties alone. I must try to operate in love, focusing outward, working towards blessing others and encouraging those that fall prey to fear too.
Easier said than done, right? I know I’ll get quicker at shutting that door if I keep practicing, until then, I’ll keep my lint roller handy!
1 John 4:18 “Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.” New Living Translation