My son inspires me to exercise.

I think it is really, really important, the way two pieces of bread is necessary for a sandwich, the way two hands must come together to make a clapping sound, the way the wind is needed to disperse the cotton seeds; I think in the same way, family success can only happen if every member of the family sees himself as a key component to making it happen.

I have been struggling to exercise consistently, I would start then stop, start then pause, start then……nothing……:).    But the lovely and interesting fact is, I really love to exercise.  Once I get started, I feel alive, renewed and invincible.  Interestingly, I always feel like the Holy Spirit is nudging me to exercise.  Is he trying to show me that I need to take steps towards a healthier lifestyle?  But he does not have to keep reminding me right?  It just makes sense to exercise; results of research bombards us of that fact.  But still…..I struggle.

Well, I publicly confess, I need to be motivated from time to time to keep doing it.

Today, I am motivated. How come? Why?  Jonathan.    His passion to work out has finally rubbed of on me and when he invited me again to work out with him this week, I finally caved in.

I really appreciate his interest in getting him mama “moving”.  I allowed him to instruct me through the warm up routines, watched him select a suitable work-out set for me and listened to his wise instructions.   God is using my son to get me moving :).

The end result was good!   I did the routine again for a second time this week without him nudging me, and I feel really accomplished.

We really need each other as family. 

As our children grow older, we need not to resist the fact that they are growing very knowledgeable and eager to teach us a thing or two or even three.   They exhibit responsible behaviours that sometimes leaves us as parents with mental confusion :);  “Where did my baby go?”.

Well my babies are still with me, but they no longer need my wet kisses, they need me to respect the fact that they can teach me a thing or two or even three.

So I have decided I would stick with my son as my Keep-fit trainer, at least for now.

Treasure each member of your family as that second hand that is needed to produce the beautiful clapping sound.

 

 

Treasured Lessons from my Mother – Lesson 7

Honour your husband even when you don’t feel like it

There were times when I wished my mom would be more vocal or less patient.   There were those times when I would wonder, how does she do it?   It truly takes grace to serve with a humble and kind spirit consistently.

Mom gave up personal dreams to serve at the side of her husband, who was very active in ministry as a Pastor, for most of their married life. He Pastored three different churches during his days as a Pastor, he was also actively involved in evangelism, teaching bible school and counselling.  His active schedules meant, at times, lonely days and lonely nights for mom.

Being a Pastor is no easy job, especially with a wife and family who needs you.  Mom was often the stabilizer at home from the time Dad accepted the call to serve full-time in Leading local churches, evangelizing, teaching and counselling.  Such a call requires much sacrifice on the part of the wife and of course an understanding spirit.

While my parent’s marriage was an example for me to follow; there were certain aspects of it that I would’ve changed, it was not Perfect!!   Mom desired and still desires more effective communication and intimacy (not speaking of sex here – intimacy is much more). But what stands out to me is her faithfulness in service at home despite how she felt, how big her emotional needs were and how much she disagreed with Dad, at times.    She served so well and is still doing it today at the age of seventy-seven.  She was not known to harbor malice,  unforgiveness or bitterness; she was never one to hit back because she felt hurt, instead she would find herself kneeling at her bedside in prayer.  Having a relationship with her Heavenly Father helped her to cope.

I have a vivid picture of mom preparing meals daily for Dad and serving him his food either at the table or wherever he would prefer.  Those servings were always healthy looking, attractive and tasty.   Meals were hardly late.  I also remember her inquiring about his well-being, firmly discouraging him against overworking or pushing himself too much.  She facilitated his comfort, her unconditional love and support made it possible for him to be effective as he sought to obey God’s calling.

Application:  That we who are married mothers, learn to serve our husbands beyond our feelings, loving our husbands unconditionally.  It is our duty to communicate to our children what a healthy marriage looks like.  It is not easy, and it never will be, but submitting ourselves to God’s biblical instructions makes it possible.  Serve with a pure heart and as you serve, trust God to fix the areas in your marriage that needs fixing.

Thank you so much for reading, it was my pleasure to share these Lessons.  There is much more, but I’ll stop hear for now….:)

Treasured Lessons from My Mother – Lesson 6

You can overcome

My mom’s childhood is very similar to many, instability at home and poverty.   She struggled as she sought to find her identity fighting defeating thoughts about herself, even after turning to God as a teenager.   Through her determination to discover more about God and to trust in his promises, she overcame.   She overcame, and it allowed her to minister effectively to her husband and her children and to many hurting people she met in her journey through life.

Because of her testimony, I have adopted the same attitude, that by pursuing God and his word and by trusting in his promises, I can overcome anything.   I have found that one of the fiercest battles in one’s life can be the battle of the mind.  I have learnt and I am still learning how to guard my mind from destructive thoughts, beliefs and perceptions.  Mom thought us how to preserve our mind and our heart, how to embrace love, joy and peace, how to think only on the things that were just, and lovely, and of good virtue.  She confessed with her mouth, the victory bestowed upon us by God himself; she claimed it, it became her survival mechanism or rather God became her survival mechanism..

Like many others, Mom has won the battle against negative thoughts, a poor self image and fear of speaking up.  She read and memorized scripture passages that renewed her mind, established hope and exposed the real nature of the Evil One, who is fixed towards destroying men.

She really believed that she was valuable to God and that he had a purpose for her even as a stay-at-home Mom and Pastor’s wife; she certainly discovered that she was not a loser or a lost and defeated nobody but rather a Queen, worthy of being considered and thought of by the most powerful being in this earth.   Now that she has overcome, she is living in God’s freedom even in the midst of many who are still trapped in personal bondage.

Application:  We can easily sink into depression and self-pity, if we allow ourselves to focus on the negative experiences of growing up.  Instead look for the lessons to be learnt and embrace them.  Get to know God by reading the Bible regularly and understand what he thinks about you and the wonderful plans he has for you.  Only God can help you understand the correct perception of you.  He describes you as wonderfully made and made in His Image; that’s just awesome!!

Final Lesson on Thursday……

Treasured Lessons from my Mother – Lesson 5

Passionately intercede in prayer for your children daily

No matter, what your children have done, no matter how far they have drifted from God or how long they take to come back home, keep offering those prayers to heaven on their behalf;  something will happen eventually.   I firmly believe that the prayers of a faithful mother accomplishes a lot and it is a commitment all mothers should make.   Praying daily for your children is a necessity and it comes from a mother who deeply loves and cares about the welfare of her children; from the time they are born until the time she leaves this earth.

The Word of God says “Ask and it shall be given”.   Shouldn’t we start asking on behalf of our children, even before they are born.  I am sure it would place them at an advantage.   Ask God to draw them to him at an early age, ask Him to give them a hunger for righteousness, ask Him to bless them with intelligence and wisdom and let them be a beacon to those they meet.   ASK!

Talking to God on the behalf of our children shows that we recognise that they are only gifts to us and it is our God-given awesome responsibility to grow them up to reverence God and that involves lots of praying as well.

Application:    Start praying daily for your children!  Do not be too busy, invest significant time praying for them daily.  Be specific in your prayer, you can pray for anything and everything; for them to excel in school, for them to choose the right career, for them to choose the right spouse and more importantly for them to reverence God!!  In addition to praying daily, sometimes the Holy Spirit alerts you that something is wrong and he urges you to pray “NOW”, don’t hesitate, stop whatever you are doing and obediently pray.

more on Tuesday……

Treasured Lessons from my Mother – Lesson 4

“Greater is He that is in me, than he that is in the World.”

Well, my Mother always spoke to the Devil! “Get thee behind me Satan!”  I learnt at a young age that there is evil and there is good but if I would trust in God, who is more powerful than the Devil, I will be fine.   It was more than just saying “Get thee behind me Satan!”.  I learned as a little girl that my mind was always tossing up good and evil thoughts, seeking to fight back against temptations to be disrespectful or disobedient.   I knew at a young age that there was a special blessing of long life, joy and peace if I choose to obey God and not my feelings.   I learnt that the Devil had no control over me, unless I let him.

There was a little song we learnt at Sunday School, which in my view, was quite popular.

It goes like this:

“Get thee behind me Satan, Get thee away.  I don’t want anything to do with you today.   Get thee Behind me Satan, Get thee away.  I want to be a Christian Soldier and I want to learn to pray”.

My Mom, knew the word of God, so she knew that the one who lived within us was mightier than the evil one. She knew that we (those who truly believe in Christ), through the Holy Spirit, can overcome any temptation, hence we can boldly say “Get thee behind me Satan”!

Application: May we be mothers who read the word of God and seek to understand and believe it.   Part of understanding God’s word is applying it when having discussions with our children, when disciplining and guiding them towards safe living, living outside of the devil’s clutches. Assist your children in memorizing this verse: 1 John 4:4;  “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the World.

More lessons on Saturday…..

Treasured Lessons from my Mother – Lesson 3

“You are beautiful!”

I must credit my mom for the way I feel about myself.  These words are embedded in my mind forever!

The first place where I understood what beauty was and how beautiful I was, was at home, as the words came from my mother’s lips, “You are beautiful”.  My mom was my greatest admirer, she frequently told me about my beautiful attributes, physically and otherwise; she made me feel good about myself.  Growing-up, Mom was my sanctuary for down times or those times when I needed to be reminded that my beauty was not defined by others.  While I desired acceptance by my peers, deep down, it really did not matter what others thought about me; my mother said, I was beautiful and that is what mattered.

Mom’s words served to build me up, it gave me confidence to face the world.   I look back now, and I see how intentional she was, making a point to instill values of self-acceptance and love of one’s self.  Mother, knew when I was sad and quickly applied a double-portion of her loving words and hugs (even when I did not feel like hearing or feeling them), to brighten my day.

Women often walk the streets and feel uncomfortable (I guess men too these days) when strange men see them and comment about a part of their body they admire and sometimes it could be so embarrassing to hear what comes out of their mouths.  You feel violated just by their lustful expressions.

I remember returning home from school and even from work, as a young adult and sharing these disturbing moments with my mother and she always found a way to get me back on track, feeling awesome and beautiful again.   Today, I am thankful that very early in my life, I was thought that I am beautiful, and subconsciously, even now, as a mother, I am still trying to live up to the standard set for me by my Mother.

Application:   As parents, it is our duty to let our children know how beautiful and how special they are.  Let them know they have beautiful eyes or beautiful teeth, beautiful skin or beautiful smiles; tell them daily.  It is our duty as parents to allow our children to develop a healthy perception of themselves early.  Having a correct perception of one self can lead to that child’s ability to guard him/herself from destructive criticisms.

 

Special Promotion!! Ongoing until offers are claimed! NO LONGER AVAILABLE!

Today, marks the start of a special promotion, geared toward encouraging more persons to subscribe to my blog; inspireothersonline.com.

The first two persons to subscribe and to get three (3) other people to subscribe will receive one of the lovely necklaces in the featured picture above.   This first offer is extended to readers in my home country, Grenada! Don’t worry, there will be other offers for other destinations.

Before I tell you how you can get this special offer, let me tell you more about the items being offered:

The pendants of the featured necklaces were hand-made by Roland Benjamin, a contemporary visual Artist, who is from Grenada.  He creates art using valuable resources that we find in our environment.  Roland believes in the power of creative ingenuity and design, and has a passion for working with wood, leather and other fine precious metal.

The Pendant on the left is made of White Cedar, decorated with Wilks’ (Sea Snails) Shells, with a strip of leather at the top.  The pieces are tied together using copper wire. The Pendant on the right is made of Campeche Wood, with a Ring of Coral and again Wilks’ Shells.  The pieces are tied together using stainless steel.

When I saw these pendants, I thought they were beautiful and I decided, while I would love to keep them, I would rather enjoy the thrill of giving them away.  So, with the help of “This and That” Craft Shop in Grenada, I added silk twine to the one on the left and a suede chord to the one on the right, with rings and clasps, making them into exquisite necklaces.  I really love them, and I hope whoever is blessed to get them would love them and take  very good care of them.   The pieces of wood (white Cedar & Campeche) can be maintained by applying a little mineral oil every now and them.

Now, this is how you can get one of these beautiful necklaces:

  1. Access my blog through https://inspireothersonline.com
  2. Scroll down until you see the “subscribe” box on your right and follow the instructions to subscribe, which would also include going to your e-mail inbox to complete the process.
  3. Read a few of the articles and think of friends or family members who can be inspired by these articles, or who you would love to encourage to read more.
  4. Contact them and encourage them to subscribe also.
  5. You need to get at least three (3) persons to subscribe. Once that is accomplished, send me an e-mail with the names and e-mail addresses of the three persons who have subscribed, so I can confirm it on my end. E-mail me at fleurjerry4@gmail.com.   Remember, you need to subscribe first and be able to share with others on articles that have inspired you.

Anticipating your e-mails!! 😊

If you wish to find out more about the unique items produced by Mr. Roland Benjamin, you can contact him on telephone no. 1-473-457-8499

Treasured lessons from my Mother – Lesson 2

“Be industrious, work with your hands skillfully.”

As a child, my family ate home-made snacks like, fudge, sugar-cake, “tolum”, caramel pop-corn (crack-a-jack), sweet rolls, buns, cookies, sweet potato pudding, plum stew, damsel stew, guava stew, tambarind balls, paw paw balls, milk & sugar, farine & sugar (yes, I am serious), and the list goes on.

My mom was good at cooking, baking, cleaning, ironing, gardening, writing, counselling and teaching.  She was also a Designer and a Seamstress, sewing beautiful dresses for her daughters.

Our home was always fairly clean, (not spotless ☹); it was easy to find stuff and it was always tastefully decorated, of course within our affordability, because we were not rich nor middle class.

Mom was a farmer, she raised chickens for the purpose of eggs and for cooking, she produced coconut oil, tomato catch-up and vinegar.   Yes!!.  Thinking about it, she was a local manufacturer; she was actually into agro-processing, all for the consumption of family, neighbors and friends.

She certainly showed me how to be make very good use of the hands God has given me.   Trust me, I am no where close to competing with such a record for industrious behavior.

Because Mom was industrious, our food choices were very healthy!  Because Mom was industrious, we knew we could be industrious too, it was all about choice.   Because Mom was industrious, we never went hungry. Because Mom was industrious, we have great memories that bonds us today as siblings.

Mom is much older now, she is still industrious, while she is not doing as much as she used, but that’s ok, because, for she certainly did not waste time with her hands, when it mattered and we are all grown now!

Application: When we are industrious, we create a way out of our need, building beautiful memories.  When we are industrious, we are actually being obedient to the word of God, which admonishes us not to be slothful, or to hate work, but rather to use our gifts, talents and abilities, to be good keepers of our homes and to be hospitable.

More lessons from my Mom on Tuesday……..

Treasured lessons from my Mother! – Lesson 1

Do you know the saying “Kids say the darnest things”?  Well, I think mothers say the most precious things.

“Be wise as a serpent and harmless as a dove”. 

These are the words my Mother told me almost every day as I left for school.  I treasured those words and took heed to them, as she hoped.   Many years later, today, I am realizing, how rich and powerful those words were and still are.    The origin of these words are:  Matthew 10:16 which says “Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents and harmless as doves.”  In this passage, Jesus was speaking to his Disciples as he prepared them to preach to the world, giving them spiritual advice.  He is actually teaching them to be like Him.  My understanding is that the word “wise” in this context has more to do with being shrewd (sharp, smart), someone who plans carefully, strategizing in such a way to get his mission accomplished and at the same time not ruining his testimony (be also harmless as doves).

My mother never knew what each day would bring forth, as we as children stepped out to embrace each day, hoping to return home safely.  She knew however,  that the world was a dangerous place and people could be mean, she also knew that we could be negatively influenced by people who did not have our best interest at heart.  By repeating this statement to us daily, she sought to amplify the scriptures in such a way that it became memorable, almost as if it was written on our foreheads.  As a result, I was constantly reminded to choose wisely.

Application:  If we ought to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves, it means that we need to think carefully before making decisions, even before we speak.   We should seek to make sure that our decisions do not cause us to inflict harm on ourselves and others.  

Look out for more lessons from my mom……I am sure you have learnt many lessons from your mom as well.  Feel free to share as a comment.

A Mother’s role – Featuring the Beutow Family

When we think about living purposeful lives as parents, we ought to always remember that we have a very important responsibility.   From the time you conceive and there is a baby growing in your womb, to the day you die, your responsibility as a mother is with you.  What we need to understand is that as our kids grow their needs change and it requires you to be adaptable and sensitive to those needs, if you are going  to continue playing a significant role in their lives.

Sometime in February or early March, I was scrolling through my Facebook home page and an article written by one of my F.B. friends caught my eye.  Once I started reading, I wanted to read it to the end.  I immediately connected with the story, as a parent, and also, because it came across as sincere and honest and yet tenderly sweet and touching.   Immediately, I thought, this is so good, others should read it; or rather, the world should read it.   My friend was simply sharing her heart, and her experience, as a Mother of three.

I linked her up after reading it and asked if I can share her thoughts/story on my blog.    I am so happy she said yes, and because she did, you too can read it.  Thank you Misty!

This piece of writing is more of an inspirational testimony or reminder of the precious things in life: Written by Misty Beutow, on February 26th, 2018.  Misty is a Godly Stay-at-Home Mom seeking to honour God in her service as a mother and a wife.

Here is her short story. (Featured pic; Misty & Andrew)

“Yesterday Andrew and I took a short road trip; it’s about a 2-hour drive.  For the first 30 mins or so, we enjoyed our road trip snacks and had great conversation.   After a bit he wanted to read his book, but the sun was too bright, so he hopped in the back seat.,,,,,,silence.

Then, on the way home, he wanted to read his book, more silence.   As he sat in the back reading and I drove in the quiet, I began to think back on what my mother-in-law said over the weekend. “When I walked into your house, it was different.  It used to be chaos, loud and crazy.   Now I walk in and it’s so quiet.”

It’s a new stage of life at our house; gone are the days of diapers and “sippy-cups”.   No more pulling on my pant leg and crawling up in my lap.  No more, mommy can you get me a snack.  No more cleaning up mess after mess after mess, only to find another mess.  Those days were exhausting; 3 children, ages 3 and under, can wear a mama out.

But things are different now. While my kids may not have the mindless and yet physically exhausting demands, they still need their mom. They may not need me to make them a snack, tie their shoes or kiss their ouchies, but they do need me emotionally.  They need spiritual guidance; they need me to help them navigate their independence. They need a shoulder to cry on when their heart is hurting and they need me to be their biggest cheer leader and greatest fan.

As your kids get older, and they seem to be more independent, don’t pull away from them.  Don’t let them do too much of their own thing.  It may seem like they don’t need you, but they do. Now more than ever, they need your guidance.  They need you to point them to Christ, they need you to teach them how to love when they want to fight. They need you now more than ever!  So, while there maybe silence (And you thoroughly enjoy it😉) there is still a need for you, mama ❤”

The Beutow Family.

Hope you mothers are inspired to gracefully embrace every stage of your child’s life.