For Mothers and Daughters

We have a Mother’s Day gift for you!

It’s a “reading,” created for all you moms and daughters out there. It’s sole purpose is to get you two alone together for a few moments, unplugged and undistracted, as you read God’s truth to affirm, cherish, and remind each other that you are in this thing together. There’s something very special about the relationship between mothers and daughters, and our prayer is that through this reading, relationships will be strengthened, hearts will be mended, and faith will rise as you speak these words of life over one another.

It was initially written for a Mother/Daughter retreat my sister and I were speaking for the weekend. But seeing the response it had on the moms and daughters, we knew we needed to share it with others!

So I called on my good friend Logan Pyle. He loves Jesus and uses his talents and giftings to point the world to Him. (He and his wife, Karissa, are a breath of fresh air. Their family couldn’t be more precious!) I told him of my idea and he was as excited as I was! He brought the beauty of this piece to life… real life.

THEN… who would be the mother-daughter duo?!?! Actually, I couldn’t wait to beg my friend Lori and her daughter Blake to be a part of this project. Lori’s got this parenting thing down-ha! Okay, who really does? She’s a mess… a beautiful, humble, God-fearing, light bearing, masterpiece of motherhood mess! She knows this life is about clinging to her God as she leads her children to do the same. She and her husband, Scott, are the BEST! I know it’s been a teary season as they are days away from watching their sweet girl graduate from high school! This project was special on many levels as they end one era to lean on their God as they begin another.

Again, Happy Mother’s Day! Here’s the printable version for YOU! Seriously, click on this link, it’s for YOU: mother daughter reading

{p.s. Daughters, you will totally surprise your momma if you print out the reading before she does. She’ll probably fall out of her chair! Print out one for her and one for you. This is waaaay better than picking out some hallmark card at Wallyworld! Bring some tissues and some chocolate for extra bonus points.}

{p.p.s. Moms, you can leave hints, you can tag your daughters in this video, but they still may not pick up what you’re putting down, so don’t wait for your daughters to stumble upon this video and print out the reading like good children, download the pdf and tell your daughter(s) you know what you want for Mother’s Day! Boom! Girl time!}

_______

The video was filmed and edited by: Logan Pyle
The adorable Mother/Daughter Duo in this project: Lori & Blake O’Dell

_______

 If you are new to Dancing On My Ashes… WELCOME!

To learn more about Dancing On My Ashes,
you can watch Heather & Holly’s 3 minute video: go here

To check out their book, Dancing On My Ashes: go here

If you are interested in learning more about God: go here

In other BIG, HUGE, GIGANTIC NEWS:

The Take Me Away! Women’s Retreat Cruise with us is March 2-6, 2017.

We’d LOVE for you to join the fun.

It is a short cruise so families could manage without ‘mom’ and she would come back rejuvenated, tan, with her soul refreshed! This is a perfect retreat for women’s groups or individuals. If you organize a group for the cruise you can earn your trip!

It may be just the perfect getaway what you moms and daughters need! *wink wink*

Advertisements

Hiding

by Heather Spring

After Zachariah wakes from his afternoon nap there are a series of events that follow.

The very first thing: “I hungry, Mom!” SNACK TIME!

The next: “Let’s play cars!” CAR TIME!

The other day, after bringing him his snack I left the room to change over some laundry. A few minutes later I called out to him, “Are you done, Zach? You ready to go play with your cars?”

There was no response. So I walked into the living room and saw him hunched down behind the arm of the couch. “Wacky Zachy Dean, come on, let’s go play with your cars upstairs!” Silence. “You know you want to!” I said playfully. His response, “I’m hiding, Mom.”

IMG_2990

“Hiding? Why? You want me to find you?”

“No.”

“Buddy, I want to play with you.” It brought back memories of when we were potty training. Both my boys would always “hide” in hopes to evade the dreaded number two. So, I thought, just in case, I’d ask, “Do you need to go poopie?”

“Nope. I’m just hiding.”

I let it go a few minutes more before I began my next tactic… the lure. “Zach,” I called out to him at the top of the stairs, “I’m upstairs looking at your cars. Do you want to join me? Come see some of the cars I’ve got lined up here.”  Surely, that will seal the deal.

“I’m hiding.”

Hmmm… If that didn’t get him running over himself to get upstairs, there was obviously something HE was hiding.

I decided to investigate a little more thoroughly. “Hiding, huh? Well, I think I can find you.” I could see the top of his brown-hair poking out from around the arm of the couch. As I knelt down next to him, “You weren’t hiding very well…” And then as I took in my next breath, my investigation was complete. I could “smell” why he was hiding. “Zachy?” I patted him on the bottom, “You poopied in your pants!?” My fully-potty-trained-3-year-old had momentarily forgotten the sequence of events that are supposed to happen when one needs to “go.”

Rushing him to the bathroom, he continued to deny the evidence.

Zach had made a mistake… you could say, he went “toot” far. And his fear of Mom’s wrath led him into hiding and denial. (I’m that scary, people!)

Reminds me of a conversation I’ve read many many times.

They heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. Then the Lord God called to the man, and said to him, “Where are you?” He said, “I heard the sound of You in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid myself.” (Genesis 3: 8-10)

Adam and Eve had a lot in common with my Zachariah. Because of fear they went into hiding. Playing with matchbox cars wasn’t on the top of their list, but strolling and conversing with their Creator God was. And just like Zach, these two had a nugget in their drawers—they had eaten from the only tree in the Garden that was off-limits.

God: “Where are you two?”

A & E: “We’re hiding.”

God: “Well, that’s silly. It’s a beautiful day for a stroll, don’t you think? Let’s walk and talk.”

A & E: “We’re hiding.”

Adam and Eve’s shame over the sin they had committed kept them in hiding. They weren’t very good at hiding either. He could probably see their little heads ducking behind the trees as they tried to stand as still as they could. Our hiding keeps us from dealing head on with the issue we’ve made between us. No matter what has caused us to go into hiding, nothing is too “bad” that we need to stay tucked behind trees or a couch.

So here’s the gist of my lesson learned… are you ready? Don’t let the poop get in between you and God.

God wants to show us that if we present ourselves to Him, our mess and all, that our relationship can be immediately restored as we confess and as He reminds us of His tree. He says, “If you are looking to hide, I have a great spot. You can hide behind my tree… the cross.” If we have put our faith in Him we are IN Him… we are covered by what happened on His tree. So if you’re going to hide, hide there and only there, for the cross of Christ frees us to enjoy that same relationship that Adam and Eve began in the Garden.

So… come out, come out, wherever you are! May we not miss moments with Him due to our shame, guilt, pride, and sin. He’s bigger than all that stuff.

Zach learned that although I wasn’t happy that it happened, (and, yes, he gets that I don’t want him filling his britches anytime he wants), ultimately, I love him and nothing he does is worth breaking our relationship. Nothing. There’s moments to be had together, adventures to share, cars to be driven. I am called to train him up into a successful human being. Part of that training requires moments where discipline is a healthy part of our relationship. But even then love is at the heart of my no’s, do’s, don’t do’s, tearful talks, and consequences. I long for him to understand, even in those moments, that he doesn’t have to let mistakes rob us of sweet time together. He should never let the poop come between us.

IMG_2991

I am mad at you!

by Heather Spring

My son Noah is five and is learning so much this year! He’s been working on writing words. He’s learned how to break down sounds and write what he hears. I am a VERY proud momma! So the other day he handed me this note:

Image

I held it in my hand and sounded it out: ” I am mad at you!” Staring down at the penguin notebook, I immediately started praising him for writing a sentence, “Buddy, that’s GREAT! I can read this—good job!” As I began to look up, still commending him for his job well done, I was greeted with a big scowl and arms folded in disgust. “Ooooh,” I said, “I get it… you’re mad at me! I’m sorry I’ve made you mad… but, YOU ARE WRITING!”

I’ve been thinking about this over the last few days. And it’s made me think about my relationship with God. (There’s nothing like a good old fashion hate note to get you thinking, right?) When we accept Jesus as Lord, we are told that we can call Him Abba! Daddy! (Romans 8:15) He says we can speak to Him. We can crawl up in His “spiritual” lap and enjoy simply being with our Daddy. We can tell Him anything… even that we’re mad at Him. We can storm off to our room and then slip Him a note on a penguin pad that says, “I um mad at yo! (Insert mad face with VERY furious eyebrows!) We can fold our arms and give Him the best pouty face we can dare muster up.

Communicating our frustration with Him is better than the alternative… not talking to Him at all. Not trusting Him with our feelings, with our frustrations, or with our disappointments. Growing distant or giving God the silent treatment does not grow our relationship—it hinders it.

I have to admit, that’s a habit/cycle in my life that I’ve had to work really hard to break. There have been times I’ve thought I could teach my spouse a lesson by giving him the cold shoulder. I’ve grown cold to friends in hopes that they would get the message that “I am not happy with you!” I’ve even thought I could teach God a lesson, by pulling away. But lack of communication with God hurts us. Distance cannot mend. It cannot bring about healing or understanding. It is not a relationship builder—it is a relationship breaker. It thwarts growth and steals the opportunity to love despite differing opinions. And lets be honest, we have a skewed and limited perception of real love and what that looks like. Can’t we just take Him at His word that Father knows best?

I’m thankful Noah felt comfortable enough to say to me, “I am mad at you!” I want to know how he’s feeling. Maybe truth will reign as we communicate. And maybe he’ll hear my heart as I seek to show him there is love even in discipline. There’s love even in the “No’s.” That simple expression of frustration might usher in deeper intimacy and trust despite feelings. Honesty is vital! You can’t understand His love for you if you are not willing to be real before your Daddy.

Maybe there’s someone out there that needs to stop being religious and start being real. Sometimes we play the “I’m fine” card when we are anything BUT fine!

Have you had this conversation?

“What’s wrong?”
“I’m fine,” I say, purposefully not making eye contact and scrubbing the counter.
“Are you sure? You don’t seem fine.”
“I’m FINE!” I say with more force as I seek more things to clean in a rage. (Sidenote: you think you can get a lot of cleaning done when you’re mad, but you just start cleaning in circles. I don’t recommend it.)

My husband won’t let me play the “I’m fine” card. Here’s one of my favorite moments when I tried to play my card and Dallas called me out! We’d had the above conversation and at that point he had been following me around as I cleaned in huff. After tailing me from room to room with no interaction he said, “I feel like Patrick Swayze in that scene in Ghost when he’s following around Demi before he realizes he’s a ghost.” At that point I turned and made eye contact with him and began laughing so hard I seriously forgot what I had been fuming about. And after I remembered… I was mad again… just kidding! We had honest communication and the relationship was strengthened.

God’s not Patrick Swayze. He’s alive! He longs for us to be real and talk to Him… even if we need to confess, “I’m mad at You!”

Tell Him how you are feeling even if you know that you are not justified in your feelings! Honest confession is not only beneficial in this relationship, but it’s necessary. And the good news is… if He has anything to do with it, you won’t stay mad long. His kindness leads to repentance and repentance leads to our growth and growth leads us to wholeness and in our wholeness we mirror our Daddy. And there’s nothing like looking more like Him.

So what do you need to say to Him today?