Contemplating blogging was challenging enough.  What is blogging I asked myself and how do I do it? After reading several blogs I realized that blogging is simply someone typing out their thoughts as they ponder, think, revisit them. So what can be so hard about “blogging” once a week or daily? Time, passion, values, commitment, choice…those are a few of the reasons one would consider prior to answering the question, “Why I named my Blog fiveof9.” The reason I named my blog fiveof9 is because I am the fifth child of nine my mother gave birth to. I liked spelling out five and using a numeral for nine.

Using this name gave me the identity in which I was coming from. As time has moved on, I identify myself a bit differently in that I am simply a child of Christ. That is my identity that grounds me in all of my decisions, actions and relationships. It gives me grounding rather than being the fifth child of nine total.

The fact that I was the fifth child born gives me a “rank” that many in our culture will give much attention to the detail that I am the middle child and that middle children tend to have certain traits that make them who they are. Rather than identifying myself with such mayhem, my identity in Christ is much simpler in that it encompasses one word and that word is, Love.

Love is what I move forward with and in. This side of Heaven (here on earth) I reside in my flesh and strive to be of love in all my encounters. I don’t always live up to that but it is always my goal. I allow myself the pleasure of grace as Christ has done for me.

To those of you that actually take the time to read this: May the love of Christ, by your choice of accepting Him in your heart, be the everlasting state of your heart and soul to share with others.

As a homemaker and mother of two, my kids have always been a top priority. Understanding who Christ is, my first! Growing up, church was a place we went to every Sunday and Wednesday for catechism. What struck me a few years back about this schedule is that attending these services instilled in me some great truths and a great deal of memorized ritual. The values instilled in me are still with me today and my children experience that as a result.

Being a homemaker has it’s many challenges. Working solo is great, yet there are times when the mundane of each day can be overwhelming. I am thankful for the freedom I have to study my Bible. Being a homemaker allows me to take as much time as I need to read then meditate on the written word. I marvel at the truths that have been revealed to me over the years. And as I am guided, my home reaps the rewards of my obedience.

Working through all my shame, learning what forgiveness means and finding out what “it’s not about you” truly means, has allowed me to be a more peaceful mother. Letting go of all of these burdens has allowed me to break free of the perception of who I labeled myself to be. Going about my day is all about me in “my actions about Him!”

When my actions are about following Christ, I am S T R E T C H I N G for Christ. I marvel at how much my attitude and actions have changed over time. The confidence I buried has blossomed into a desire that can be of use now. The negative ideas have been rerouted up to Him and always when they try and return, my habit is to focus on Christ and they vanish. This allows me to be my best most of the time. I am now available for His will for His Glory.

Making Christ a priority has molded me into the follower He so desires. I will never be perfect on this side of heaven but following a leader that looks over me 24/7 simply guarantees that no matter what, He is always there. I have a Master with a plan, and in stretching myself in whatever direction, He will always be my center.

Homemaking is so rewarding. Following Christ and allowing the Holy Spirit to move me is the best therapy, I could ever ask for. My faith has moved me into a new way of thinking and doing. I no longer need a “worldly” attitude to maneuver through society. Leading by example is one tough act to follow but I’m sure going to give homemaking my all by following a leader I can trust and am eager to obey. The reward is more than words can describe and homemaking has never been better.

May the love that Christ has for you and your home, give you guidance and an eager heart to understand all He so desires for you so that you too can experience a little of that most-wonderful feeling that permeates your soul and ultimately your homemaking.

Really now? Free with respect? Is that what your home envelops? Are you? What are you doing to claim that you respect your whole self? As “mom-in-chief” you can fill these shoes. Simply, it is our most-urgent necessity for respecting those we nurture. How free, with respect, are you and those in your home?

Is your reflection providing freedom, completeness, worth, love, acceptance, grace, truth? Are your interactions allowing those that live with you to explore their reflection? Or do you reflect control, fear, pride, comparison, competition, revenge and legalism? Build your reflection upon the strength of your Maker! He will encourage you and mold you into His most-desirable state. Submission and obedience unveils revelation and instills the core of which you were intended.

Clarity. Perseverance. Action. You are an amazing mother, with intentions of good for those you are caring for. Be free to love and care for each other in awe of the maturity of growth. Both in yourself and those you are yielding to. Watch them in awe. Did you ever plant a seed and marvel at the force in which it was able to sprout out of the soil? Marvel at the strength it takes those you care for (that includes yourself) to move through their walk. Enable them to experience and discover who they are In-Christ.

With respect, truth and grace, nurture their nature. Establish the ground so that water will flow to their roots and allow them to grow free (In-Christ) with respect (to themselves and others) in their environment.

How do these words of encouragement, reflect my nature of growth, and encourage you?

With love.

“Good morning dear Heavenly Father”, eyes closed, alarm off. Pondering that thought, tasks for the day stir as I pour my only cup of joe. Every morning my husband is home he makes a pot of coffee first-thing and it is such a treat for me. Centered in-Christ, I think about the list of things to do for the day. Somehow within the time I start thinking about all that I need to do and want to do I lose my grounding and fall easily into such a negative mode! Where did my “Father go?” Well, “He never left!”

It’s more of a question of where did my thoughts go? Sometimes homemaking can seem so arduous and alone. I love the freedom of homemaking and the autonomy. It’s the self-discipline that I continuously bargain with every day. Losing my focus because of lack of prioritizing and follow-through gets me so off track thus negative thoughts.

Staying productive throughout the day is certainly attainable but just what is productive as a homemaker? There is only so much time in a day to devote ourselves to the purpose of our being. Plan your work and work your plan is an idea I learned many moons ago. Ya think I might use that! I love making a list to start my day and marvel at how many times I am distracted from checking off each item. A productive homemaker is one that continuously realigns their priority as each priority is given the special attention it requires for a pupose. Read that again!

Let’s simplify “productive.” Make a list of all the things you want to have done. This list is everything that you have in mind from raking the back yard, reading a good book, making a list, to attending a meeting. Writing down the list of things you want to have done now becomes divided into smaller lists. Organize your list so that it is broken down into things that need to be done today, things that take more than one day and things that require someone you hire for example. The list of things on your daily list will be things like, prayer time, assemble lunches, make appointment, shop for project, schedule/research vacation, call for advice, make dinner, shop for week, clean floors, brush cat, family meeting, date with spouse, child or friend, help with homework. Whatever it is that hangs over your head needs to be written down. Looking at your list may seem overwhelming but it allows you to look at all the things you see as being important to you in your life.

There is only so much time in one day. Making that initial list is going to be key in seeing just how much you would like to get done. Break that list down so you have manageable time each day to complete each item on your list. Making a list on a daily basis is going to establish self-discipline and direction. Eventually you will see how much time you have in a day to be productive in the areas you truly want to establish yourself in every day. If you want to have time to watch a TV show or browse the internet on a daily basis then include that into your list. That is something you choose to incorporate into your day. If you have a hobby that requires time, schedule that in. Pretty soon you have these priorities either deleted off your list (because you dont’ want them or they are done) or spread out in a more timely manner so that you are free to be flexible yet diligent in the activities you engage.

Align yourself with your Master! (Caution: Don’t make your list your Master) Make your list, refine your list, and move forward giving thanks throughout your day as you serve your master, others and self. Extending grace as it is given to you.

May your day be filled with laughter and love as you complete each task you have put before you. If you have a big house then praise God that you have five toilets to clean. If you don’t like cleaning your toilets then buy a smaller house or give praise to the one who cleans them! Be thankful for all that you have and remember who gave it to you. If you don’t know who gave it to you then I suggest you ponder that and send me a note about what came up for you when you pondered that thought. I would be delighted to share in your discovery!

Happy homemaking today!

“It’s time to go!”, I call out to my daughter as she swiftly collects all she needs for school. Crash! Off track, shoes falling off the shelf she struggles to balance and grasp both shoes.  “Slow down”, I suggest as she makes her way outside slinging her backpack across her back and bending over to retrieve her shoe. “If you slow down, you won’t get hurt and you can make your way with ease.” Those words left me contemplating my own actions as the front door closed.

Trepidation consumed me and I wrestled with the thought that lead me to a place of silence and solace.  Grounded, it was then, that I could see how shoes falling reflected the pace in which we live.  As “mom in chief” mode, I bowed my head for clarity.  Love, joy and peace covered my heart and each task before me I vowed would be covered in that reality.  So easily the choice can be made.

Like shoes falling off the shelf so too can my attitude.  Creating an environment that nurtures peace, love and joy is not something you are going to obtain without help.  Guidance for our children requires steadfast truths. Learning first yourself then leading by example.  What kind of leader are you following?  Do you emulate your leader’s example?  Keep your shoes on the shelf!

Walking in the shoes of a leader has many challenges.  Stand up to the challenge and learn new ways of leading those who are looking up to you for guidance.  Give them room to walk and guide them so the shoes stay on the shelf.

Have fun parenting today!

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Rushing over the windshield, rain, like thoughts, clouded my vision. Wipers erased the rain like thought-change relieves suffering pouring over my soul. As I started to hydroplane, a part of me lurched, as if I too, were slipping until corrected and realined. Accelerated speed enhanced the downpour and the upkeep of the wipers cleared my sight. Entranced in the beauty of the golden road, my soul relieved; the rain was done. Each mile behind me embraced the sweet smell of fresh air only rain can provide. Washed and shiny in a light that emotes a distinction between washout and wet. Wet with the glossy shine only rain provides. Every dust particle removed in newness and shine.

Do you ever wonder how your thoughts can take you down a most destructive path? Choice! Choose to turn your wipers on or remain driving with a clouded vision. Wipers provide clarity and truth. Sometimes our wipers need adjusting to the downpour of thoughts like rain on a windshield and depending on how fast you are driving exhaserbates the stream of thoughts. Adjust your speed according to the weather. And choose to use your wipers so the rain that floods your view when driving around will add clarity to the true you.

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