I know, I know…where have I been?! lol It has been a little busy around the Kees household this week I guess. I wanted to share with you that I had my first MOPS meeting yesterday since I’ve been back home. Man, was it good to be back! The ladies were equally as thrilled to have me back, which was a very warm welcoming. I was soo happy to see all the ladies again! I have missed them dearly! I am finally getting back to being me again, which is so nice. I was really starting to miss me. I know that sounds a little silly, but it’s true. If you’ve ever experienced what I went through after going to work, and not being myself and feeling sad/mad/depressed all the time, you know exactly what I’m talking about. So it is nice to feel alive and happy again!
If you are a mother to young children, I encourage you to check around and see there is a MOPS group in your area. It is such a wonderful ministry for women. I love being able to serve on the steering team and minister to these fellow mommies and wives. Even if you are an older woman, with grown children, MOPS groups always need mentors. What a great opportunity for you to minister to young moms, to help guide them and support them. You don’t have to know it all, or be a Mother Theresa…you just have to have a loving heart and a willingness to share your life and advice with young mothers. Women’s ministry is very near and dear to my heart, and there is always such a need for it in all areas of the world.
Are you a member or mentor of a MOPS group? If so, where at? I would love to hear from you, and hear about your MOPS experiences. I would love the opportunity to pray for your group!
God has certainly had a lot to tell me recently. The song ‘Better Than A Hallelujah‘ by Amy Grant was on my mind all week long. I just could not get it out of my head, nor could I hear it too many times. I love this song, and the message it sends! It is such a simple song, packed with so much truth, and has been so special to me given all the circumstances. So, as if God hasn’t been speaking to my heart enough lately…guess what song was featured for our music special Sunday morning at church! Yup, that very song. A lady at church sang this beautiful song Sunday morning. As soon as the first measure began, tears came to my eyes. I knew God was there! Most of all, I knew God was there to meet with me that day. Since this is such a special song to me, I wanted to share it with you all!
Hope you enjoy!
On Sunday morning, Bro Philip preached a message about Jonah. He talked about how Jonah had been running for God. Jonah thought he could hide from God. God continued trying to get Jonah’s attention, wanting Jonah to repent, but Jonah just would not do it. He would have rather died than to repent! This is what got Jonah thrown overboard the ship, and how he found himself inside the belly of the fish, or whale. You see, God loves us so much that he chases after us when we run from him. Bro. Philip discussed how the storm in the story also represents our storms in life. When we have sin in our lives, or when we are trying to hide from God, rather than follow his will, he will place storms in our lives in order to get our attention. Maybe it is a marriage falling apart, or illness, or financial struggles, or issues at work, or even our conscience. God designed us so that even when we are pushing him away, we can’t avoid our conscience. God will use all of these things to get us to come back to him. Sometimes we may have storms in our lives, but after we spend time in prayer and looking at our own lives, we realize that we are not the cause of these storms, but maybe our spouse or a family member. Because when someone is going through something, or dealing with issues, it will effect those around that person. But that is really getting into a whole different conversation. As Bro. Philip preached this incredible message, God revealed something to me….I have been running from God. Me! How could that I be?…I talk to God all the time!…I repent even when I say an ugly word, or think an ugly thought! How could I be running, God? How? Then I realized that I hadn’t been running due to sin, but in following God’s will. You see, I made a choice back in the summer to ignore God’s calling and put my child in public school, rather than homeschooling her. We made the choice to do so because we needed money, which meant I went to work and our daughter went off to school. I knew this was not God’s will, but I knew that we needed money and God would understand. Wrong! Immediately once I started working, God started working on my heart and mind. I felt so guilty! Each and every single day I felt guilt and sadness. About a month after I started working is when our daughter was diagnosed with HSP, and I began having to take off work a lot. As time went by, the guilt and sadness continued. Stress added to it, and the last couple of months I began feeling depressed. God was placing all of these storms in my life to get my attention. All he wanted was for us to trust him and follow his will. During these past few months, my husband also found out that he will be soon be out of a job. So needless to say, it is like we have become the modern day Jonah. Of course, last week I left my job to be back at home so that I can be there for my daughter whenever she needs me. Immediately I felt peace in my life. We have some work ahead of us in following God’s will for our lives in order to get all of this mess worked out, but we are on our way. I no longer feel guilty or sad, and I am trusting that God will provide. God spoke to me on Sunday in an incredible way. He truly showed me the error of my ways. We are people of such little faith. We claim to be strong Christians, but the truth of it is, we are human and in the face of struggles and problems in life, we think we are in control and our faith just doesn’t measure up. I know for me, its time for that to change. My theme for 2012 is ‘God is in control!’. I may have to tell myself this a million times a day, but if that is what it takes for me to just trust him and have 100% faith in him, that’s okay with me.
Before Sunday’s message, I would have never even thought of myself as trying to run from God. But boy, what I wrong! My question to you is….are you running from God? If you are….STOP! God is bigger than you are. God is bigger than any and every problem you have. God loves you! Just let go, and stop running! God is faster than you, and smarter than you. You can run from God, but you certainly can’t hide from him.
Thanks for reading! God Bless!
I posted recently about a lesson I had learned, but I didn’t give the back story as to how I learned that lesson. Well, let me share. Last year my husband and I wrestled with the idea of homeschooling. However, we were feeling some financial pressure, so I jumped on the bandwagon to work and we sent our daughter off to school. I didn’t work very long before I really started questioning what we had done. Even so, I brushed it off and went on, as I knew we could really use the extra salary. About a month after I began working, our daughter was diagnosed with HSP. This is not a life threatening condition, and will go away at some point during the year, but it can be a scary condition as it can cause permanent kidney issues in some cases. From that point on it was doctor appointments every two weeks, and labs every few days. Then it was off to see a specialist, and more labs, and more appointments. I was always having to leave work or miss work. On top of this stress, I began feeling a huge sense of guilt for sending my child off to school and taking a job. I felt like I wasn’t following God’s will for our family. In recent months I have even felt depressed; often sad or mad for no reason at all. Finally, this week it was like God hit me over the head with it. He said “just let go!”. So I did. I resigned from my job to be back at home. Let me tell you, I have never felt more peace in my life…even with all the stress we do have right now. It was just right. My asst. principal had noticed a difference in me a long time ago, and had been waiting for me to come talk to him. He said I had done an amazing job, but something changed; that I had all the qualities of an amazing teacher, but this just wasn’t God’s will for my life right now. Wow! I was speechless! God was speaking through that man…right to me. God proved to me even more that this was right for us…in less than 48 hours they had filled my position. No teaching job ever gets filled that quickly! God has had his hand on all of this, all along. He taught me that he is in control, and I need to relax and let him go to work. So I am not home, and even though my daughter will be in school until May, I can now take her to school, pick her up, go on fieldtrips, go to school parties, and help out in her class….things I never got to do before, and things I would have never gotten to do during her Pre-K year had I not listened to God. So for once in a long, long time…I have amazing peace. Spare yourself the grief I felt, and listen to God! He is such a good God! And I promise you, if you give him the chance, he will work in your life. Is my family budget more than tight now that I’m back home….oh yea!…but God will provide. I may need to find a part-time job, or a night job, but never again will anything come before my family…nor will any job other than my job as mom be put first. This is God’s will and calling for me…it may not be for you, and that’s okay, but always listen to what God says.
As you see from the title, we only got 3 days in this week. On Wednesday M was feeling under the weather, and I honestly didn’t have the motivation at 4am to get up and go alone. However, I did get my husband out with me that evening for a mile and a half. He walked, I ran a little. It was better than nothing. Wednesday night we had some icky weather which kept us up with the dogs until after 1:00am, so by the time we got the dogs back out, in bed and asleep, it was a good 2:00am. By this point I wasn’t feeling hot and was super tired, so Thursday was a no go. This morning however, we started our run with prayer. What an awesome way to start the morning! We were able to run every bit that the program calls for! That means we ran 1/2 mile without stopping! I’m so proud of us! That 1/2 mile was the 5 minute stint, which we did again at the end. In total we ran 16 minutes – 20 minutes, which was equal to about 2 miles. Isn’t that great!! For the first 5 minutes of running, we started going up a hill with a slight, steady incline. It is so tough, but I was determined to do it! The whole way up that hill I prayed, and thanked God for many things. With every step, I praised him! I thanked him for family members, for having M to run with and push me, for having the ability to run, for having such support from friends and family, for having the motivation and desire to get healthy, for having the motivation to get up every morning at 4:30am….I just spent that time praising Him! It helped me and empowered me so much! It was nice to have my mind on something other than, “when is 5 minutes going to be up?!” for once. Now the numbers on the scale are at a standstill again this week, but I can hear God telling me not to worry about the number. If I become worried about numbers, like weight and size, I will become obsessed, which will result in me using unhealthy methods to get the numbers down. I know that, and God knows that. And I know that does not please God, and it does not lift Him up in any way. As long as I am working hard, and getting my body healthy, that is all that matters. I will continue to check my weight because this does give me an idea of what my body is doing, as well as some extra motivation, but I most def. can’t make this all about the numbers, and for once in my life….I’m okay with that. I know that God will continue to reveal things to me, and motivate me, and work in and through me.
Have a blessed Memorial Day weekend! Thanks for reading! On to Week 5 on Monday!
Here in good ole Louisiana we had some rain last night, and early this morning. Therefore, we did not get to go for our morning run. I wasn’t exactly devastated by that considering I’m sick and very, very sore today. It was nice to get to sleep in late this morning, but I knew I needed to get out and run. I put my daughter in the stroller, all bundled up (seeing as how it was like 59 degrees here this morning), and took off. It didn’t take long for me to feel the burn. Needless to say, I didn’t do so hot. I only made a mile, which resulted in me running about half of it total. I was pretty disappointed, but realized it is very important for me to stay positive. I mean it is only day 2 on this journey. Later in the day I decided to do a little indoor walking workout to help supplement what I had lost this morning. That seemed to help give me a little boost, and like my husband said, what I did was better than doing nothing. That is so true! I never thought about it like that before, but even the shortest, low intensity workout is always better than no workout. I continue to pray that the Lord give me strength, knowledge, self-control, determination, and power to do this. Although most days I want to cry when I look in the mirror, I know God gave me these struggles for a reason. I know that if I draw near to him, rely on him, and just hang in there, I will make it through.
I think it is important you know that I have lost weight before. In high school I lost 35 pounds in just a few months. So I know it can be done. Of course it was much easier then; I was playing sports, had no real responsibilities, and healthy meals prepared for me daily. Today it is a little more difficult with a family of my own, a busy schedule, and a lot me weight to shed this go around. Some days I am very positive and it is easy to workout and eat right, and some days I really struggle. Some days I just want to give in and say I’ll be fat and just learn to love who I am, just the way I am. Then it’s like God says “Whoa!” and I realize that is so silly and weak. I am not healthy, and this truely has nothing to do with me. This journey is about getting healthy for my family and for my future health, as well as being a worthy temple for the presence of the Lord to dwell within. Yes, this is hard. It is very hard. But I’m reminded that anything worth having/achieving in life does not come easily. It’s like being a Christian; it is so hard to give up our old ways and relinquish control to God, and once we do follow him, it is even harder to live out the day to day struggles. Even as Christians, we are only human and deal with the same temptations and problems as everyone else. Every day we have to choose to say yes to God. We have to choose to give up wordly things and do what honors God. We have to choose to carry on our relationship with him. We have to choose to sacrifice things for Him. We have to choose what kind of life and what kind of example we will be for others. It is all about choices, and the right choices don’t mean they’re easy choices.