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Finishing Well• New Podcast Ep 43

As the homeschool year comes to a close, it is very tempting to throw in the towel and just focus on getting it all together next year, but today I want to encourage you to finish well and with excellence this year. Whether you are a homeschooler or a public schooler, or whatever task God has given you, let’s finish well. We only have this moment right now and God expects diligence from us in each task given. Join me today as I chat about not throwing in the towel, but finishing well. (even when all I want to do is forget the books and have a Little House on the Prairie marathon all day! 😉

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Simply...Living For Him

Is This Real Life?

The last two weeks have been a whirlwind. Of all good things.

I have found myself asking more than once, “Is this real life?”

How do I even begin to write about something that my heart can’t fathom yet? God is so good.

I had the privilege to speak at Teach Them Diligently in Rogers, AR two weeks ago and Nashville, TN this past weekend. Both were amazing. Both were a display of God’s work in all things.

My beautiful 16-year old daughter traveled with me to Arkansas and it was an adventure. It was our first time flying anywhere alone and we loved every minute of it. Even the 3 am wake up call for the 6 am flight was no big deal. I ran on coffee and adrenaline the whole time!

We absolutely loved the rural feel of TTD Arkansas. The airport was mindblowing, as we landed straight there in the middle of cow fields with no skyscrapers (or buildings, for that matter) in sight. Quite different from when we took off in Newark NJ! Oh, and there was one road out of the airport. Navigating this area was my cup of tea 😉

I loved every family I was able to meet, the fellow writers and speakers that I have interacted with online for years but hadn’t met in real life, and just being a part of such a God-honoring event.

Amy of Raising Arrows!

Rachael Carmen of Apologia– I have admired her for years and now I am writing for her at Rooted Daily Devotionals <3

Another highlight was this incredible rainbow. Grace and I had gone out to dinner and were driving back to the hotel in a terrible rainstorm. There was lightning and thunder and downpours so bad that we could barely see.

As we neared the hotel, there was a church with these three enormous crosses and I noted to my daughter how God was showing up right there in the storm to make His presence known. I sort of joked and said, “Ok, God, now show me a rainbow.” Now I am not one to tell God what to do 😉 I was really just saying it tongue in cheek. Although I do have a special connection with rainbows (but that’s a whole other story for another time.) 

Anyway, as the words came out of my mouth, I turned my head and literally beside us was this HUGE, double, full arched rainbow. It was SO bright. I screamed so loud that I scared Grace. We were both in awe.

We pulled into the convention center and the rainbow literally went over the entire center. It was nothing short of jaw-dropping, and pictures don’t do it justice. There was this rainbow, but lightning was still striking all around it. It gave me the chills and reminded me of the spiritual warfare going on around us, but God PREVAILS. (just sayin…Ken Ham was finishing up speaking at this exact moment. Crazy, right?)

Anyway, we came home for two days, celebrated my girl’s Sweet 16, and then the whole family headed back on the road to TTD Nashville for the next weekend. It’s about a 13-hour drive, and once again another 3 am wake up call! (but I love it!)

 

What can I say? The Gaylord Opryland is majestic. The convention here is enormous. Everything about it was perfection.

The icing on the cake? My parents joined us! They flew down and met us there. It is always miraculous for me to speak when they are there, particularly when I gave my talk, “Called Home” and told the story of their strong opposition to homeschooling, and how God has worked miracle upon miracle in all of us. Truly a blessing beyond compare.

Another highlight was workshopping with The Gettys! Keith and Krystin Getty did a fabulous job of kicking off the convention with a lovely concert complete with their new children’s hymns and a full choir of children from families at the convention. It was precious.

In Christ Alone!

 

As I try and recoup (emotionally even more than physically) this week, I can’t help but praise the Lord for all He has done. I can’t believe this life I live is real. The opportunities He has provided to minister to others is such a blessing. The people I have met are amazing. None of this makes sense logically…that He would use me for anything…but I will never stop praising for what He has done and continues to do!

If you will be in Atlanta next month, I will be speaking at Teach Them Diligently Atlanta and would love to see you! These events are so truly incredible. Don’t miss it!

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I am so grateful for my family and their support and just doing life together with them!

Here are some more snippets of our time!

 

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See you in Atlanta next month!

Learn more about having less stuff and MORE JESUS this summer!

Grab a ticket now before prices go up!

simplyretreat2017

Get My NEW Book!

 

Check out where I am speaking in 2017—-> SPEAKING

Listen to the Podcast—-> PODCAST

Watch my YouTube Channel–->YouTube

Shop Simply Living for Him——>SHOP

Simply Living for Him, Simply...Living For Him, Spring Cleaning Series

Simplify Your Life: Time Wasters

We live in a day and age where we have so many conveniences. We don’t have to spend all day cooking and preparing in order to serve a warm supper. We don’t have to hunt and gather our food. We don’t have to go anywhere to fetch water. We don’t have to bring our clothes down to a water source to wash. The list goes on and on.

And at our fingertips, we have all the information we could ever need, plus lots we probably don’t even really want!

So then why, why oh why, do we all run around so busy declaring, “we just don’t have time!”

I recently asked my facebook readers what they thought the biggest thing is that eats up their time. The results were definitely in agreement, one of the biggest time wasters is the Intenet. (are you surprised? 😉 )

Why is that we live in a time in history that life is truly easier than any of our ancestors, yet we all run around being busy and wishing for more hours in the day?

With the ease of life these days we should have more time, not less. Therefore, I conclude that we are spending, or perhaps, “wasting” time in all the wrong places.

Clearly, one of the biggest time wasters these days is the Internet. At any moment of the day, we can see what all of our friends and family (plus perhaps that girl from math class in high school ) are doing. We can see pictures of their children, what they are eating for lunch, and where they are going on vacation. Now don’t get me wrong. I love the Internet! It connects me with so many people that I would not be in contact otherwise. I work on the Internet! It has opened doors in my life beyond my imagination. I don’t want to live without it and the truth is I don’t have to.

The problem doesn’t lie within the Internet itself. It is purely a matter of being a good steward of our time.

Would you spend hours in a coffee shop knowing you had other things to do? Or hours watching TV in front of your children? I’m guessing not. So then why does it seem we can be on the Internet for so much time each day? Or worse, while we should be tending to our families, home, etc.

We are all only allotted 24 hours in each day. Same as it’s always been. Our ancestors had the same amount of time. (Doing all those things I listed above mind you.)

So, what we do with our time matters. As someone who works on the Internet, I know the struggle. It’s real. The articles call you. The Instagram feed is entertaining. The facebook page gives us an escape from reality. And because it is so easily accessible, it almost is more difficult to resist. 

But I have a solution I think anyone can benefit from.

Set hours to be online (or minutes.) I set time for myself before school time (after my personal Bible time, and NEVER before.) I try to be strict with this. My biggest downfall can be the alerts on my phone. I am a work in progress and know that I need to turn those off. Just keeping it real here.

Let’s hold ourselves accountable. Find a friend that can truly hold you accountable if they see you on the Internet at times other than those you have set for yourself. Find friends you can trust. We all need each other to help us and not condemn us!

Schedule your Internet time like anything else. Set a time limit and stick to it.

These things sound so easy, but yet many of us still have may have an issue. This is where we move from being good stewards of our time to practicing self-control. 

Self-control is a fruit of the spirit, so if we are lacking in this area, then our spirit may need tending to. If we truly can’t stay within the boundaries set for the Internet, then we need to go to the Word, pray, and spend even more time with the Lord. 

 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23

Once we are controlled by the Sprit, we desire the things of this world less. We are also able to practice self-control when we are filled with His truths. So if we say we just “can’t” control our time wasters, it may be time to evaluate your spirit and fill your mind with truths instead of time wasted on the Internet.

 

For other posts in my new series click here—>SPRING CLEANING SERIES

Learn more about having less stuff and MORE JESUS this summer!

Grab a ticket now before prices go up!

simplyretreat2017

Get My NEW Book!

 

Check out where I am speaking in 2017—-> SPEAKING

Listen to the Podcast—-> PODCAST

Watch my YouTube Channel–->YouTube

Shop Simply Living for Him——>SHOP