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Simply...Living For Him

A Slow Letting Go…

As I sit here and type, my eyes are filled with tears and there’s that lump in my throat. My head hurts a little and I have that melancholy feeling of sort of just being out of sorts. It that makes sense.

My boys are outside playing with friends. They’re having a good ol’ July water fight. I bring them towels. I offer freeze pops. They keep shooting water and screaming at each other, and barely notice my offers. I mean, they’re certainly capable of getting towels and freeze pops. Seriously, my two teen boys already tower over me. My presence doesn’t feel like it’s much needed. But I still hover for a bit and then head inside.

It’s quiet inside. I walk from room to room, fussing with a few piles, putting a few things away, trying to find a place that needs tending to.

My 17-year old is gone for the day. In her very own car, out with a friend, and then she’ll drive herself to worship practice this evening. I check in and text her every once in awhile.

Just because.

And then I think to myself, “Was it worse when they needed me incessantly, non-stop around the clock…or not much at all anymore?”

The lump is there. The eyes are stinging.

I know. Everyone said this would happen….one day. But it seemed to come out of nowhere, even though it really didn’t. They went from needing me less and less to not much at all.

And of course, we always need our mamas, but it’s different. It’s a different type of needing.

This past year has been a year of transition. A letting go…a little at a time. As we approach the last six months before adulthood for my oldest, the transition has been a good one overall. There have been bumps and there have been hard parts. But overall, it’s been good.

There are just sometimes, when a little at a time, I just ache. I hear that baby voice in my head, but it has been replaced by the low tone of a teenage boy. I pray with them over life choices rather than teaching them to use their “inside voice.” Instead of worrying about naps and schedules, I worry about them driving.

Times have changed.

I remember the endless nights without sleep, tending to needy babies. Those teenagers now aren’t sleeping at night, but it has changed. It’s not because they’re fussy. Now, they want to stay up late hanging out in our room, laughing and story-telling. I struggle to keep my eyes open past 10 pm, because I know to savor those moments, so I stay awake.

It’s a slow letting go…although a necessary one…this time of life. Teens hanging there in the midst of adulthood.

A mom that was always tending to little ones, now trying to find her place in the big one’s lives.

Yes, a slow letting go. For me and for them.

Yet, I love watching them grow. I love who they are becoming. So this time is just as sweet as it stings. Because they are growing into who God made them to be. And all is well.

 

 

 

Simply...Living For Him

The Great BIG Purge of 2018- Living Clutter Free

I know I write about having less clutter. I know I talk about living with less…but sometimes, life creeps up and you go, “WHAT??”

Yeah. That was us these past few days.

You see, we switched bedrooms for our kids this week. We went from, “Let’s just try moving the beds to see how it looks” to being knee deep in two bedrooms (four kids between those two bedrooms) worth of stuff.

I am telling you. The floor was covered in stuff. There were mattresses in the hallway. There were pieces of beds everywhere. There were clothes, Legos, books, and every little thing these kids have collected over their years. Exploded between the two bedrooms.

At one point I was trapped in my room because the mattresses in the hallway were blocking me from getting out. I laid on my bed and proclaimed, “I can’t do this anymore!”

Now I know in the grand scheme of things, this is not a big deal. But still…

So, there we were knee deep in stuff and I thought, “How on earth am I the Simply Living for Him lady…How did this happen?”

Now on the surface, their rooms really were not that cluttered because our house layout is kind of “different.” The area upstairs (where we all sleep) was intended when it was built to be a small apartment. They converted the layout when they built it for a son to live with his elderly mother, but they never ended up living here. It was still brand new when we moved in and we sort of turned living areas into bedrooms. One for my daughter, and one for my three sons to share. So frankly, their rooms are HUGE. My daughter’s new room is like a studio apartment. So while things never looked cluttered before because it was a large space, when you empty it, you do realize how much has accumulated over the years.

Let’s just say we now have approximately 20+ garbage bags of trash.

And then there was the “homeschool closet.” Part of this cleanup involved our wall length storage closet that we used to keep all of our homeschool books and supplies. It has certainly accumulated stuff over the years from used curriculum sales, well-meaning hand-me-down books, and four kids worth of school. But as I went through it, I realized we will need very little of it. My daughter graduates next year, I know what the boys will use for high school…and my little guy…well we have learned to truly KEEP IT SIMPLE.

So I’ve got TONS of boxes of homeschool books that I am giving away.

It’s been freeing to get rid of this stuff, but the process admittedly was overwhelming. I am thankful for my kids, who have even greater organizational skills that I do, more energy than I do, and certainly a great deal of perseverance.

Join me on Friday when I talk about all that I learned from this massive decluttering~ It is about much more than just the stuff! NEW PODCAST EPISODE will be up then!

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Simply…Seeking Him: A Journal

**TIME IS RUNNING OUT- SLFH2018! Registration Ends June 3oth!

This summer, I am hosting a women’s retreat in Gettysburg, PA. In a world of excess, we are going to focus on that fact that Jesus is enough. The world will tell you YOU are enough. But truly, HE is enough. He is all we need. We don’t rely on ourselves, or earthly comforts, but on Him alone.  I have lived with it all stripped away, and I have seen that yes, Jesus is enough. In fact, Jesus is MORE than enough.

Early Bird Registration is Open! Join us for this life-changing and life-giving event. You will spend two days with other sisters in Christ, tired of what the world offers, and ready to live the life that HE offers.


SIGN UP for Our Newsletter (Grab 2 FREEBIES)—>Newsletter

Check out where I am speaking in 2018—-> SPEAKING (UPDATED)

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Simply...Living For Him, Simply...Seeking Him

I always thank my God

You all know my desire and passion to get all of us in the Word every single day. What better way to use my space here on the Internet than to fill it with Scripture.

Every single day, I will have a new scripture on the blog, sometimes with thoughts about it, sometimes with questions for you to ponder, and maybe sometimes just the scripture itself. But no matter what, I am vowing to publish Truth each day so no matter who comes to this space, can find a treasure. There are no greater words to read than God’s very own words.

So while I will still be publishing my usual blog posts and podcasts, I will also have a scripture each day right here on the blog. I pray this blesses you and encourages us all to get in the Word each day. I also hope the scripture I share here is NOT a substitute for sitting down and opening the Bible yourself…but perhaps a reminder, an encouragement, or a starting point. Ultimately, there is no substitute for getting into His Word each day.

Let’s all vow to be seekers of Truth! Let’s start simply…seeking Him.

See all the posts here

Philemon 4-7

I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers, 5 because I hear about your love for all his holy people and your faith in the Lord Jesus. 6 I pray that your partnership with us in the faith may be effective in deepening your understanding of every good thing we share for the sake of Christ. 7 Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the Lord’s people.

Simply...Living For Him

Exhale

Ahhh… I am finally taking a deep breath to exhale. That is how I feel this morning after a whirlwind few months…this morning as I write, the breeze is blowing in the window, the sun is shining, the birds are chirping, and right across the road I can see horses and sheep grazing. I am content.

This past weekend was my last homeschool convention of the season and boy did it end on a high note. I absolutely loved every minute of my time at NCHE Thrive! Conference. It was held at the Benton Center in Winston-Salem, NC and I can’t say enough about how well run this conference was. The organization does an amazing job. The convention center itself was gorgeous, and the people I met were delightful.

I was a featured speaker and gave five presentations. And for the very first time, Simply Living for Him had a booth in the exhibit hall. We had no idea what to expect as exhibitors since we had ever done it before. My main purpose of the booth wasn’t really to “sell” but to connect with other families. We did sell my books, but I also had the privilege to laugh, hug, cry, chat, and pray with other families. What a blessing! I loved every second of it.

The room I spoke in all weekend. <3

And my family was so supportive. My sons “worked” the booth and really stepped up to the occasion. It was such a blessing to see my oldest truly come to life. He has always been the timider of the four, and this weekend he took charge of everything, handled the booth when I was speaking or unavailable, and worked so hard. It’s a wonderful thing to see God working in the hearts and lives if your children.

I am just filled with joy today. Even though I was weary when we pulled into our driveway at 1:30 am Sunday morning, my heart was bursting. And it still is. What an amazing God I serve!

So this week, we are winding down our school year and basically just finishing some loose ends, I am grateful to exhale. Take a deep breath. I look back at this past convention season and stand in awe. Each trip was fraught with so many trials beforehand. So many distractions. So many unknowns. And to see that God is so much bigger than all of it. When He calls you, He equips you.

My faith is ever-stronger. I see that when I get past those distractions (attacks), He abundantly provides beyond measure. I am just so grateful to do what I love to do with the people that I love. It is a gift.

So…moving forward. The next few days I will continue to breathe slowly. To let the past few months absorb into my soul and to just rest.

Then I gear up for the culmination of a year’s worth of workour Simply Living for Him Retreat which takes place July 12-14. I am beyond excited for this year’s event and there is still time to register. It is our last summer retreat for now…the Lord knows the future! But there will not be one in 2019. So NOW is the time to join us!

I also will be speaking in August at the Family Bible Conference in Washington, DC! More info here—>Family Bible Conference.

I am seeking the Lord’s direction for my ministry, for this website, and more. I will have some changes coming over the next few months and am excited to see where He takes me.

Someone asked me this weekend, “What motivates you? And drives you? And fuels you to do what you do?”

My answer: “Jesus.”

Plain and simple. It’s Jesus.

For now, I exhale. Breathe deep of the Savior’s love and rest…it is good for the soul.