19 October 2010

Unexpected Blessings!

Friday was such a special, blessed day!
Early in the morning we discovered I’ve won a card making challenge I entered with the sample card I’ve made for Heidi-Mari’s First Blog Anniversary Card Making Challenge. 

It is the most amazing feeling to open a challenge blog and see your name and/or the picture of your card.  I normally feel like someone who dream when I see Heidi-Mari’s name and have to look twice! She has won quite a few challenges until now (she confesses, she still experience an initial shock every time!), so when I saw my own name, I was pleasantly surprised!  I won 3 digital stamps for Heidi-Mari’s digital stamp collection!  
The rest of my Friday was taken up with normal chores, cleaning the house (how is it possible that a house can get so dirty in a week?), doing laundry, taking care of the many needs of my many children, in between home schooling and driving the older children to their extramural activities in the afternoon.  
I also gave little Michael his first haircut!  

Oh! My baby has grown up so quickly and is becoming a little boy.  It felt like yesterday that my baby was born, but he is already 8 months old.  He is developing a personality of his own, but also amazingly share personality traits of his siblings! 

Since he got his first haircut he is even more adorable (if it is possible).  David (turning 4 end of October) will often tell me “Your baby is very cute”  I’m sure you’ll agree when looking at this precious little face!  

Then when Christo came home after work, Friday afternoon, he handed me a parcel.  Now I’m mad about surprises and since I was not expecting anything, it was even more exciting!  I couldn’t find scissors quick enough to open my parcel!   Inside this unexpected gift was a book, 8 rubber wrist bracelets and a very encouraging thank you letter!  

The book:  Nancy Campbell’s newest book ‘100 Days of Blessing’
I couldn’t believe my eyes, for the second time the day! I read about Nancy’s latest book in her  newsletter and decided I just had to have it, but didn’t have the time to order it yet.  What a blessing to receive it as a gift!
While making Daniel asleep that night, I read Day 1 with my LED headlight and already I’ve been blessed!  It was such a powerful message and taking into account the unexpected blessings/rewards I’ve received during the day, it hit home even stronger!  
“Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.”
1 Cor 15:58
How easy do we get weary in the very demanding job as a mother!  I almost daily receive e-mails and phone calls from weary mothers! I myself have days that weariness is in every single part of my body! It is no easy job to raise a growing family, with Godly standards, in an ungodly world!  It is a selfless work, serving your family, mostly 24 hours a day, with a joyful spirit, while human strength often cannot keep up the pace! 

Then it is a lowly  job in the eyes of the world - wasting your time and talents!  Often family don’t even understand why you are doing it, giving you moments of heartache and disappointment.  I myself just recently got an unexpected blow from a family member for having so many children, embarrassing them in front of their friends!  
Friends don’t encouraged us in raising our children ourselves, either.  The moment you confess weariness in a moment of weakness, they are quick to tell you they are glad it isn’t their job, they will never manage, they don’t have the patience!  Not very encouraging when you are weary!  
Raising godly children, one need to have a long term vision. Often we don’t feel strong enough for the challenges that lies ahead and fruit or rewards on your hard work is few and far between!

But in 1 Cor 15:58 we read the Lord want us to ‘abound’ in our work for Him!  Where can women find a more valuable work in the eyes of the Lord than caring for the needs of children and train them on His behalf! God also exhort us  not to become weary in doing this work for him - He has a promise with His challenge!  He will be our Rewarder!  
Wow, how encouraged and full of joy and excitement my day ended on Friday, because of my unexpected gifts!  How much more will be our joy and excitement when the Lord returns with our rewards!

To keep going with the work He set before us, we need to renew our minds and think what is important for God!  We need to separate our selves from the thinking of the world and take every thought captive. We need God’s Word in our hearts and minds so we can recall His promises when we get weary!  And to help me with this, I’m so thankful for my rubber wrist bracelets!  

Here is how the Wrist Bracelets where ‘born’ in Nancy’s own words:
When my sister, Kate, was proof-reading my book, 100 Days of Blessing,
I noticed loads of little Post-it Notes sticking to her arm.

"What on earth are you doing, Kate?" I asked.

"There are so many statements in this book that are life-changing. I don't
want to forget them," she replied. "

You should get bracelets with these slogans on them so mothers can look
at them and be reminded of these truths throughout the day," she

It sounded like a pretty good idea to me.

It would be too expensive for mothers to purchase fancy embossed
bracelets so I have printed eight different rubber wrist bands with...
Powerful and Positive affirmations for 

wives and mothers!

The ones currently 

available are:

Over the past few days I constantly wore them on my wrist and were reminded of my high and mighty calling as a mother and wife! 

While writing this posting  I’m wearing I’m a Nation Builder!  What an incredible goal and to see it every time when I look down, it is such a strong reminder!
When I received the bracelets on Friday, I immediately put on ‘I love my Husband’!  It was amazing what effect it had.  My husband was really tired and stressed out when he came home!  On top of worked very hard the whole week, the new DVD player he bought the day before, didn’t put out sound after CJ connected all the wires.  He had to work through the whole system to find the fault and that wasn’t good.  While he had all these challenges, I saw my ‘I love my Husband’-bracelet while I took of the washing from the line, bathed the little ones and did the dishes.  It was just so much easier to encourage and love my husband while he was tired!
Over the weekend I went with 6 of my 8 children to buy summer clothes!  Christo and the two older boys were at the WP Junior Show Jumping Championships.

Heidi-Mari and I had to take the 5 younger children with us! What a challenge!  So I put on “We’re a smiling family” Wow it was so powerful!  Every time when weariness and frustration wanted me to give up on being a loving, smiling, patience mother, I saw my yellow bracelet and I could smile with my children, again! How powerful is the smile of a Mother!
I’m going to wear my bracelets every day and change them as I’m facing challenges, to help me win the everyday battles that come with being a Godly Wife and mother!  My only hope is in the Lord! 
“Father God, please help me to have an abounding attitude as I mother in home - abounding in joy, fun, laughter, nurturing, sweetness, love and wisdom. 

“If I only do what is required of me, I am a slave.  When I do more than is required, I am a free person.”*
* Taken from 100 Days of Blessing
Nancy Campbell
For South African Readers:  I’m going to import these bracelets and Nancy’s 100 Days of Blessings as soon as possible.  I’ll post here when it arrives.
With Love


Sonja said...

Baie geluk Linnie! Jou kaart is so pragtig,ek wens ek kon sulke mooi kaartjies gemaak het,jy het n talent daarvoor soos ek min gesien het! Laat weet asb wat die boek gaan kos! Wat n wonderlike idee is daai armbande! Ag en gee al die kleine wangetjies vir my part soentjies! Wens ons was nader aan mekaar om mekaar meer te ondersteun,maar die Here het ons met opset oral oor versprei want ligte kan nie almal op een plek staan nie,dan is die res van die wereld donker!

Nella said...

Dankie Here dat U vir Linnie oor my pad gestuur het. Sy maak my elke dag bewus van U groot liefde en oneindige genade! Sy is my "unexpected blessing"!

Karyn said...

Wow, Linnie
Thank you for that wonderful inspirational encouragement!
I have been struggling so with family comments and the way they see our family. Its so hard when you know they'll never understand but you know this is so right in God's eyes. Children are such a precious blessing.
Trusting HIM! Book looks awesome.
Love, Karyn

AutumnVine said...

Baie geluk! Dis wonderlik. Geniet elke oomblik.
Is daar ander boeke ook beskikbaar of waar kan ons dit bestel/kry?

Linnie said...

Hallo Esther,
Ek het so pas die armbande bestel en hoop om dit hier te he voor die einde van die jaar. Die 100 days of Blessings moet ongelukkig saam met die volgende Above Rubies, met die skip kom, sal dus bietjie langer neem.
Ander boeke van Above Rubies wat ek beskikbaar het, kan jy kry op die Above Rubies Suid Afrika Website: www.aboverubies.co.za
Power of Motherhood, Gate Keeper of the Home, Family Meal Table and Hospitality, Where are the Real Men of God, Be Fruitful and Multiply is uitstekende boeke wat jy kan oorweeg!

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