My quiet time was loud

One of my goals this year was to study my Bible daily, truly STUDY. I was already reading my Bible pretty often but it was very sporadic in nature.  Some days I might find time to do it in the morning during my daughter’s morning nap time (which no longer exists), sometimes I might pull up my Bible app on my phone in between fixing toys, handing out snacks, cleaning messes, doing laundry, making grocery lists or (gasp) checking Facebook and Instagram.  On really good days, I might actually steal a few extra minutes to get my pen, highlighter and Bible and actually STUDY what I was reading.

I knew this lack of dedication in my relationship with Him was not good, and quite frankly it was really bothering me.  In perfect timing, I began reading “Women Living Well.”  In her book, Courtney devotes the entire first section of the book to stressing the importance of our daily “walk with the King,” as she so accurately describes it. Why is this the first section of the book, placed even before marriage or parenting? Because this aspect of our lives should be the most important, taking precedence over anything else. She gives loads of suggestions on how to accomplish this, backed with real life ideas and ways to make this happen.  While things still aren’t perfect, I have learned there are a few key things to creating a consistent, meaningful, beneficial daily quiet time routine.  Here are some things I did:

1.  First, I bought a cute notebook to devote strictly to daily studies.  Some days I might simply make notes, some days I might write out full scriptures, some days I might do some verse mapping and somedays I might actually write out specific prayers.  I am extremely organized, so any reason to buy a new notebook excited me!

2.  I bought a new devotional and Bible.  It’s totally not necessary to purchase an entirely new Bible to become more devoted to a daily quiet time.  However, I had been wanting to purchase a Bible geared toward women/mothers for quite some time, so for me this was the perfect reason to go ahead and do it!

3.  I committed to studying daily.  For me, 30 minutes is the perfect amount of time to schedule each day, anything extra is bonus (and I’ll definitely take it)!  I began the year prepared to give myself this 30 minutes immediately after dropping my son off at school.  However, I quickly discovered that this time isn’t exactly quiet with a 20 month old in the house. In fact, it’s pretty loud…and hectic! Some days I would get lucky and get to spend my full 30 minutes uninterrupted while she played happily, but most days I  found myself stopping every 5 minutes to get out a new toy, turn a toy on, fill a sippy cup, get a snack, etc.  This clearly wasn’t working!

So, where did that leave me?  Honestly, irritated and stressed.  Which is where I’m at now.   I know exactly where this 30 minutes I’m craving needs to come from…my alarm clock, set for 6:00 a.m. instead of 6:30.  This is my biggest hinderance in my daily walk with God. I have always been someone who sets my alarm for the very last second and jumps out of bed and gets ready as quick as possible, not wasting any precious sleep. So, now my new goal is to not only set my alarm clock for 6:00 a.m., but to actually GET UP and take advantage of these 30 quiet minutes before the day gets loud. Honestly, I think I’ll find those extra 30 minutes really are precious…just not for sleeping!


Women Living Well Book Study

Last October I took part in on an online Bible study that truly changed my life.  The study was based on the book “A Confident Heart” by Renee Swope.  Through that Bible study I discovered several awesomely inspiring women bloggers, one of which was Courtney Joseph from Women Living Well.

At this time, Courtney was very close to the launch date of her new book, also entitled Women Living Well.  I downloaded the book after finishing the online Bible study and immediately dove in.  Who was this woman that had the exact same thoughts as me?  To say I agree with Courtney’s views on Biblical living would be a vast understatement.  In “Women Living Well” Courtney discusses topics such as our husband’s being the head of the household, a hot topic after the release of (and subsequent interviews regarding) Candace Cameron Bure ‘s new book (whom I also love and entirely agree with and support). 

Other topics include ideas on daily Bible time, the effects of social media in marriage, parenting and more.  I am very excited to begin working through this book as a full-blown study, rather than a simple reading of ideas.  Will you join me?

First, pick up a  copy of Courtney Joseph’s book, “Women Living Well:  Finding Your Joy in God, Your Man, Your Kids and Your Home.”  It is available at most major book retailers, as well as in many ebook formats. Next, follow this 8 week reading plan:   (click to enlarge).


Then, simply join in the discussion over on Courtney’s book club blog page and be sure to check back here for my insight as well.  I pray this study will impact your life in the days to come!


You have a choice

The choices we make in our marriages have generational effects.  The choices your grandparents made effected your parents and, in turn, effected you and the way you perceive marriage.  In Ephesians 5, the relationship of marriage is likened to that of Christ and the church, the most important relationship there is and will ever be.  Therefore, it goes to reason that our marriages should be as important to us as our relationship with Jesus.  When your walk with God gets hard do you throw in the towel and look for a better God?  Hopefully not!  Why then, when times get tough in marriage, are we so quick to throw in the towel and look for a better spouse?

Our grandparents seem to have had a much better grasp on this truth than our generation today, which is all to willing to resort to divorce at the first sign of struggle.  Maybe you were raised in a home where the ideals of marriage were not Biblically portrayed.  Maybe your own marriage is now struggling.  You have an opportunity to positively impact your children, their marriages, your future grandkids and their marriages.  Value your marriage, respect it and your spouse.  Put as much effort and emphasis on it as you do your relationship with Jesus.  Study God’s word on marriage in Ephesians 5.  Even though this is not society’s ideal of marriage, it is Christ’s ideal of marriage and will truly stand the test of time if we let it.  Imagine the impact this could have on society!

Are you making positive generational decisions in your marriage?  Will your kids and grandkids be able to view yours as a model of Biblical marriage?  If not, now is the time to make changes that will positively impact the path of your family for generations to come.

Building Grandma’s House

Picture your grandma’s house as a kid.  Was it quiet?  Was it calm and peaceful?  Was it well-kept?   Did your grandma seem rushed to get from here to there?  Did she seem in a hurry to finish the next thing on her to-do list? Did she cook dinner (and maybe even breakfast and lunch) every day? Did she work outside the home?

 Now picture your own house.  Is it peaceful or chaotic?  Is it well-kept or does the clutter cause you stress?  Are you constantly feeling rushed and in a hurry to finish the never ending to-do list?  Do you want to cook better meals for your family but still find yourself hitting the drive thru most nights?  Do you work outside the home but feel guilty about time lost with your kids?  Or, do you stay home with your kids but feel like you’re wasting your college degree or loosing momentum in the workforce?  Do you wish things would slow down just a little so you could enjoy life with your kids and family?

 Join me as we use God’s word to discover how we really can, and should, slow down, eliminate distractions and build homes that are loving, peaceful and maybe even old-fashioned.  Join me as we build homes like Grandma had.