Sunday, July 31, 2011

With you always

Jesus tells his disciples "lo, I am with you always, even until the end of the age".(Matthew 28:20).  This was a very comforting thought in my devotional today.  It's my Father telling me, he will always be with me.  Who doesn't want that.  When you know your Father is with you, you can stand tall.  When your Father is with you, you can walk boldly.  When your Father is with you, you can love passionately.  When your Father is with you, you can give of yourself completely.  When your Father is with you, you don't have to be scared.  When your Father is with you, you feel accepted.  When your Father is with you, you feel strong.  When your Father is with you, you feel free. 

The waves of life beat against and the current of life tries to drag you away, but you can take comfort that you are safe in the shadow of His wings and nothing can take you out of the palm of His hand.  You may feel the beat of the waves but they won't take you down.  You may feel the pull of the current, but it won't take you away.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Help Fight Cruelty to Animals

I am happy to announce my first online event in which a portion of the proceeds will be donated to a nonprofit organization.  The organization I'm teaming up with for this event is the SPCA of Anne Arundel County.  The SPCA is a nonprofit organization that removes animals from unsafe conditions.  They take in 3,400 animals annually and they do not receive any government funding. Please join me as I join them in fighting animal cruelty by shopping my online Avon store!  The link is below
http://andecarr.avonrepresentative.com/online_event/

Lazy Saturdays

I love Saturdays because I don't have to be on such a tight schedule.  It's the one day of the week that I don't worry about cooking or keeping the house in order.  I get to start my morning very slow and I don't have to worry about being ready to get Noah busy by 8:30am doing activities and playing with her.  I don't have to be "productive"  I guess Saturday is my "Sabbath" day in a sense.  Saturday is the day we hang out as a family.  Today we are suppose to go to the pool, then we have the sitter coming at 4pm to watch Noah so Reggie and I can spend some time together. 

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Remembering and Reflecting

Almost 10 years ago I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior.  God somehow got me to the place and time of my conversion.  I can't take credit it.  Somehow God saved me.  I really don't know how He did it, He just did.  I don't know how in the world He reached into my heart and turned it towards Him.  Turning away from the partying, the drinking, the sex.  How in the world?  It wasn't an intellectual process of my thinking these things through and deciding somehow that they were not beneficial for me.  No, that wasn't what happened.  I know for a long time I wanted something better for my life, but I didn't know what that was or how to get there, but God did!  It was all God.  He appealed to my heart in a way that only He can to draw me to Himself and to the life He wants for me.  Trust me, God has a good plan for our lives if we follow His plan. 

Then I got married almost 5 years ago.  I'm not going to lie it was hard in the beginning.  Your bringing all your stuff into a lifelong relationship with someone else and starting the journey of becoming one; it's not easy at first.  As we approach our 5 year anniversary, I find myself comparing it to when I got saved.  Somehow my husband and I have gotten to this amazing place in our marriage.  It's amazing to me, I can't speak for him.  Somehow, I'm on fire for him again just like when we were dating.  Somehow when I take in a glimpse of him I have to look away if I am to contain myself.  Somehow I have this huge crush on my husband.  I'm like "Wow, how in the world did I get here?".  I can't say exactly how I got to this place in our marriage, but I can say that the more I rest, trust, and abide in the grace of God; the more I'm able to receive the grace my husband extends.  It seems "being at rest in the grace of God" is a good look for me and it turns my husband on.   

Overwhelmed? Then God speaks.....

Sometimes.............ok, I'm lying.............Many times, I wake up and I don't feel ready to face the day. My to-do lists along with my aspirations and desires seem to crush me before I can even get started. I get overwhelmed at the very thought of tackling the various things on my plate and on my mind. Then I freeze. You know like when a deer gets caught in front of the headlights of a car in the middle of the night; he freezes right in the middle of the road. Today I had that very situation. So I stopped and took a look at myself. These days I don't like to spend too much time concentrating on myself, because it's not very fruitful. I'd rather look at God. There are times where it is beneficial for me to stop and take a look at what's going on with me (my thoughts, my heart, etc.) I only take a pause.Today, I considered and I said to myself and maybe God was listening (wink) "Can I just take peek inside my life and look at what's going on or what's not going on?" and as clear as day I heard "Do not worry about your life". Then I looked up the scripture that says that very thing:

Luke 12

22 Then He said to His disciples, “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; nor about the body, what you will put on. 23 Life is more than food, and the body is more than clothing. 24 Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap, which have neither storehouse nor barn; and God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds? 25 And which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? 26 If you then are not able to do the least, why are you anxious for the rest? 27 Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 28 If then God so clothes the grass, which today is in the field and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will He clothe you, O you of little faith?
29 “And do not seek what you should eat or what you should drink, nor have an anxious mind. 30 For all these things the nations of the world seek after, and your Father knows that you need these things. 31 But seek the kingdom of God, and all these things[c] shall be added to you. 

So first God tells me "Don't worry about my life" how opposing is that from what we hear in the world.  Then He says to "Consider the ravens."  That is certainly not what the "Life Coaches" of today are teaching us; but it certainly seems to be God's answer to my dilemma today.  Then He says to "seek the Kingdom of God".  God is not leaving me to twiddle my thumbs with nothing to do.  For me, "seeking the Kingdom of God" means making daily decisions in a way that gets attention off of me and keeps it on serving others.  I find that when I don't focus/reflect to much on myself it leads to greater maturity and trust in God and it has also yielded some amazing fruit.  So, there you have it.  It was God's simple answer to my complicated question.  "Do not worry about your life"

Monday, July 18, 2011

Compassionate and Gentle Discipline

Children can bring out the best and sometimes the worst in you. They challenge to your greatest depths and carry you to your greatest triumphs. You fustration and emotions can be taken to great extremes. But I know in my heart that children need to see self control in their parents. If children know they can trigger your fustration or anger than they will work to do it. They feel like they are in control of something when you allow them to control your emotions. One of the things that I don't like doing with Noah is raising my voice. It normally just makes situations worst and it doesn't exemplify a calm way of handling situations. So I am committed to trusting God to help me not to raise my voice at Noah anymore. You are much more in control of your child when you are able to institute punishments and consequences in a calm manner. When I yell at Noah normally it's because I'm trying to talk over her crying and get a point across to her. But I realize now that my getting my point across is not as productive as allowing Noah to calm down and then talking to her. In life we get in such a rush that we sometimes don't even make time to discipline our children in a way that gentle and compassionate. I know, I feel much compassion for Noah in her selfish, rebellious tendencies because I'm the same way. As a child of God, I know I give Him a hard time about stuff in my own childish way. I'm just hoping I can stop trying to compete with her crying by raising my voice.

Hard, but it works!

I love my little girl, Noah. There are times where Noah does some things that warrant more than a timeout or spanking. She gets an actual punishment. The punishments normally have the most impact on her. Most of the time she loses her T.v. Shows for an extended period of time, like for a whole day. If she misbehaves before bedtime and does one of those specific things that warrant a punishment I will let her know she gets no T.V. in the morning, which is her favorite time to watch T.V. This morning Noah is without her "Shows". When I start to feel bad about punishing her, I just remind myself of how much her behavior has improved in other areas as a result of being punished. I remind myself of some of the things she use to do and she doesn't anymore because of being punished. She has done well and I'm very proud of her, but I realize that I have to continue to allow her to experience the consequences of her bad behavior so she can continue to grow and learn. It is our job to train a child up in the way they should. God charges us as parents with that. While He is willing to help us and guide us, we have to be willing. Another thing that motivates me, is when I think about what will happen in the future if I don't discipline her now, not a pretty picture. It easier for them to learn these lessons now than later. And the costs of these lessons will be much higher as they get older.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Get comfortable, it never ends

Many a mom with grown children have told me once you become a mom, mothering never ends. It never stops. I believe them. Because I look at my mom and other mothers in our family with grown children and they are just as busy taking care of family as they ever were it seems.Not only are you still mothering your own children, but you are mothering your grandchildren and sometimes even mothering your own aging parents. This is the cycle of life. I am just beginning my journey in mothering. I think I need to grab some popcorn, a good movie, a cozy blanket and get comfortable because this is my life. There is no turning back now. Mothers are busy not matter what the situation is, whether in the workplace or at home. We are busy serving. However I tend to think a fellow co-worker or superior in the workplace has the capacity to show a little more mercy than a toddler at home. I'm sure many reading this can relate to this. But the minute I get up, the demands start to the tune of "I want juice and a snack and to watch my movie"
"I'm done with my juice"
"I want something else"
"Mommy do you want to play with me"
"Are we gonna do activities?"

These comments summarize what the rest of my day is pretty much going to look like. My daughter has a script that plays out in her mind everyday all day. So predictable, the same script. I'm serious. She is seriously a creature of habit. That's why I do try to force her out of her comfort zones on a regular basis. What else can I say about this mothering thing in the 3 minutes I have before I have to prepare Noah's "activities" for the morning? I think mothering is most enjoyable when you don't try to fight the natural flow of it. Embrace your lifelong journey of nonstop daily service to your family and lean on God the whole step of the way.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

My fellow "Mommy Bloggers"

I am so glad to have come across so many great blogs by other moms. I am learning and getting a lot of encouragement. Many of these women are great business women as well, I can tell. As a mom trying to build a business again, I think that all these friendships that are beginning couldn't of started at a better time. Thank you to all my new friends in the universe of "Mommy Blogging".

A little at a time

Being a stay-at-home mom and having a little one home with me 3 days during the week can make building a business into a very slow process.  But I have to remind myself of the saying that "slow and steady wins the race". While I'm sitting here building my business, feeling like I don't quite know what I'm doing yet, and feeling like the process is at a snails pace;  I remind myself that "my daddy" will bless my efforts.  It's not so much about whether or not I know what I'm doing, as it is about my trusting the Lord.  Trusting the Lord creates the soil that bears the fruit.

$$s for online hosting

I am looking for individuals to host Epartys for my Avon business.  If you would partner with me in hosting a party, you would receive 15% of all the sales from that party.  If you are interested, it's very easy.  I set it up on my Avon website and assign you a promo code.  That's how I will track the party so you get you 15% of the sales. All you would need to do is send out e-mails and/or post on your blog.  You can just tell friends. If you are interested send me your name, contact phone number and e-mail  Partnering is how businesses grow and I am looking for partners.  Fundraising is also an area I'm looking to create partnerships and use this business to help those in need. 

Ande Carr
womenntune@gmail.com

My awe factor

The childlike "awe" factor is an amazing thing in the life of an adult.  Just that thing that never fails to make your mouth fall open as you're thinking "wow".  Mine is the simple fact that God was here before anything thing else ever existed, when the earth was without form and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep.  The fact that God has always been here.  He is like this "Master of our universe, of our world". This person who has been here forever and created this entire world loves me individually, is my friend and my Father.  What kid wouldn't want the "Creator of the whole world" as his/her Father.  That's my awe factor.  God can bring out the child in you if you let Him.

Genesis 1
The History of Creation
 1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was[a] on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Keep it simple

We all have a specific way that we function best. Some of us enjoy being more structured and some not so much. Some of us like a tight schedule, some a loose schedule and some no schedule at all. I think it is important to discover and remember how you function best as a mom and as a person. This world pulls you in so many different directions as a woman, to be so many different things. But what God calls us to is normally simple. Consult the "Lord of Lords" for wisdom on your design. Ask Him the best way for you to function. I believe grace comes with being more accepting of yourself and how you are designed. How fustrating it must be for God, seeing us struggle the way we do trying to fit ourselves into molds that we were not made to fit into. He must wonder "Why doesn't she just ask me, I can show her the mold I designed her for". Keep your life simple and call Him when you need Him.

Acts 4:12
New King James Version (NKJV)
12 Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

Friday, July 1, 2011

They can't help it!

Last week my pastor talked about how Jesus came to set us free. But what really stuck with me was the purpose for which we've been set free. We have been set free by Jesus's loving sacrifice so we would be free to love ourselves and others in a way the pleases God. Young children don't always make that easy. Especially when you are going through something. Like when you barely have a voice and you are trying to get it back for a cruise you are going on in 2 days. I'm just saying............
When I tell my daughter that I need to give my voice a break she goes on like I didn't even say anything, like "I still want you to give me what I want". I know kids are born with selfishness already programmed in them. My daughter seems to mistake me for a waitress/slave sometimes so I'm trying to set the record straight. People like to say that young children are pure. It's so not true. While I believe that when children are young and don't know any better God you can't blame them. I think "they don't know any better" is a better statement to use then the word "pure". But I do know that there comes a time in a child's life as a parent to lovingly start holding them accountable for their behavior. My daughter is 3. I am starting to really enforce consequences for her actions, but I also told her that when she turns 4 yr old we are going to have some new rules in our house for her. I'm not the strictest parent, because it's not my personal parenting style. However, there are times where I have to put my own personal preferences aside in order to be the parent that my daughter needs me to be right now.

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