Girl, Read Your Bible

Rachel Hollis wants to say, “Girl, Wash Your Face.” You should be a girl who reads her Bible.

Dig into it! Study it! Show yourself approved as a daughter of the King!

Be ready to give a defense for the hope that is in you!

In a world where girls can blabber off their favorite worldly t.v. show and secular music artists be the girl that is able to encourage others with scripture you have memorized.

Be the girl that shares biblical counsel rather than worldly cliches.

Be the girl that can offer REAL hope because you know the Lord of lords and recognize that it is His ways, not the world’s, that will truly bring about lasting change in yours and others lives!

In a world where girls spend hours and hours learning how to put on their makeup and dress in a way that gets all the “wows” be the girl that seeks to have a gentle and quiet spirit because you know that that is what your God sees as true beauty.

In a world where girls are continually looking for ways to look younger be the girl that embraces signs of aging recognizing that gray hairs, according to your Maker, are a sign of wisdom.

In a world where girls are more confused and depressed than ever be the girl who recognizes where true joy comes from! Point these sad, tired, lonely girls toward the One that made them and knows their every need and desire and longs to fulfill them in a way this world never can!

In a world full of girls, be a woman. A woman after God’s own heart. A woman that seeks to be biblical, not trendy. Lovely, not sexy. Calm, not anxious. Be the woman who makes heads turn not because your clothing is so immodest revealing your body but because there is just something about you that screams: “I’m different! I am not so concerned about washing my face as I am about the things of God!”

Girl, go read your bible and while you’re at it look for people to serve. 

Love, Katie

 

Does A Wife Have Any Say?!

Many Christian women wonder: “Do I have any say? I know I’m supposed to submit, but does my opinion even matter?!”

Of course your opinion matters. My husband often says that after the Holy Spirit and Word of God the wife should have the loudest voice in her husband’s life.

Here are a few problems though:

1. Women are controlling. It’s true. And if you think you aren’t then read Genesis 3:16 where it says that part of the curse is for us women to “desire our husbands but they shall rule over us.” Since it’s part of the curse this surely isn’t talking about us desiring them emotionally or physically, nope, it’s a desire to control. Look up Genesis 4:7. God uses the EXACT SAME HEBREW WORD for desire when He is talking to Cain about sin’s desire for him. Does sin desire us in some lovely way? No. Sin wants to control us and take over our lives…like many wives want to do to their husbands. We have to control that sinful desire rather than seeking to control our husbands.

2. Women are often nags. We just don’t know when to stop. The bible says we are to follow our husband’s lead. We are to adapt to him, not the other way around. But we like to push and push and sometimes push some more, often in manipulative ways. Each husband has a different threshold for nagging 🙂 Some men are just too passive to speak up and let their wives know. I like to ask my husband if I am approaching the nagging line and he lets me know. I have also given him permission to tell me no more talking about certain subjects if I am just pushing it too much.

3. We think we want our husbands to lead but usually we just want them to lead the way we would lead. This is just another form of control. I am guessing if most women who whine about their husbands not leading got to experience what that is like for even a week they would find out quickly it’s a lot harder than they imagined since our husbands leading often means us not getting what we want. Which leads me to number four.

4. Submission means NOT getting what you want. When God calls us to submit, He’s requiring that we bend when we don’t want to. He’s calling us to put ourselves under our husbands when we don’t agree. If we agreed that would be agreement, not submission. 

5. Many women are overly concerned with how their husbands are failing and not concerned enough with how they are failing. Yes, your husband is not loving you perfectly like Christ loves the church, how are you doing with submitting to him as the church is to submit to Christ? Do you think you would be a lot better at it if he were a better husband? Well, you are called to submit to Christ every day and He is the perfect Husband and you fail in that…I fail in that, EVERY day. Don’t blame your husband. Blaming our husband’s for our lack of submission gets us no where but bitter.

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After reviewing these five problems and prayerfully considering them I would say women are in a better mindset to “voice their opinion.”  Usually voicing our opinion is a form of control, nagging, not wanting our husbands to lead and not being willing to submit. But, sometimes, we are genuinely passionate about something and rightfully so! Like moving. That’s a huge decision. When we were considering moving to WA from CA I voiced my opinion clearly but I told my husband in the end: “Ultimately this up to you, it’s on your shoulders and I will support your decision.” We need to have that attitude of support.

Other times maybe we are voicing our opinion on something we do or don’t want to do. Sometimes we are being flat out selfish. Sometimes we are genuinely concerned… only we can know our true motives. One time I voiced my opinion about something to my husband and I made it clear that I was concerned of having a panic attack if we did it. I wasn’t being manipulative or selfish, I just didn’t want to lose my mind. I have had 2 of those in my life and I am finding my threshold for things is lessening as I have more kids (I have 7 children ages 10 and under right now). My husband knows this about me and out of his love for me and wanting to take care of me as Ephesians 5 instructs him to do. he “submitted” and didn’t move forward out of concern for me.

Some of you are married to non-believers. This changes things drastically. In 1 Peter 3 God says the best way to “win your husband over” is without words. That’s right, words don’t work. He says your godly behavior is what will win him over. Nagging him, controlling him, complaining to him…are not godly behaviors. Submitting, encouraging and supporting him are godly behaviors. Does this mean to submit to abuse? No, by all means talk to your pastor about how to be safe and do what is necessary.

Too many of us wives are more concerned about our agendas and plans rather than God’s. We are very anxious about whether or not we will get our way. May we repent of that and see God’s desires for our lives and marriages!! His desire is to make us holy, not necessarily happy. We as wives are to picture the church’s relationship to Christ. A gentle, submissive spirit is how the church is to be toward Christ, not a rebellious, obsessive spirit that dominates and controls. May we be better at saying “Thy will be done” rather than constantly saying in different ways: “My will be done”.

The Lord will bless us as we submit to our husbands and seek to make God’s agenda our agenda. His agenda is for us to adapt to our husbands and have a gentle and quiet spirit that trusts in Him.

Love, Katie

Click here to see an extensive list of bible verses on us submitting to our husbands. 

If this article was interesting to you click here to get my husband’s marriage book! 

My 7th Birth Story

This is my least favorite. It really was death of a vision.

I have done four hospital births and two home births. I wanted this one to be at a birthing center and thought it would be the best of both worlds. I could get away and have someone take care of me and not have people bugging me constantly.

I started having contractions that were noticeably different Sunday morning. I sat through my husband’s preaching and had to close my eyes a few times 🙂 My five year old was sitting next to me and said: “Mama! Open your eyes!” (Didn’t want me sleeping through daddy’s sermon).

I came home and thought: “Hmmm, might be today!” But… the contractions were so sporadic.

Sunday night around 7 p.m. my family went to evening service and I stayed home with somewhat painful, erratic contractions. We decided to have my kids go stay at my inlaws and my sister’s house in case I went into labor at 2 a.m.

Welp, 2 a.m. rolled around and we decided to go to the birthing center. I had anxiety about it because my contractions were still… strange… all of my labors up to this one have been very similar but his one was…different and just not progressing like the others have…

I was a four when I got to the birthing center…I laid in the bed and it felt like the labor really slowed down… It was stressful because I felt like I was wasting the midwives’ time. At about 4 a.m. I asked my midwife what I should do. She gave me some tincture (cedarwood maybe?) and told me to take a shower and rub my chest to stimulate contractions. I did that and after only two doses of the tincture and a shower I felt like things were changing. I got back in bed to get ready and sure enough I felt a BIG one coming… BAM! My water broke with that contraction and my midwife came in. We both seemed excited and I knew things were progressing…but then…we saw the meconium. She looked at me and asked: “Did you have an ultrasound recently?” Me: “No…” having no idea why she asked that… She said she wanted to check me again… I laid down and she said: “Katie, I’m so sorry but your baby is breech and we can’t legally deliver her. You’re going to have to go to a hospital and I am guessing they will want to do a c-section.”

I was bummed….but said: “Ok, let’s go then…” We pulled up to the ER and went in. I was trying my hardest not to cry and keep my sense of humor going. When the midwives said: “I’m so sorry.” I just replied: “I’m ok, God is sovereign over all of this.” That was really the only thing comforting me at the time. Knowing that God knew Ruby would enter the world via c-section.

I got checked into my room and the Dr. came in and said: “Hello, I am the one doing your surgery today.” No questions like: “Would you like a c-section?” Nope. I was going into surgery and that was it. Unfortunately, I was ready to go at 7 a.m….right when everyone switches shifts so I had to labor for another hour while everyone got checked in and ready.

By the time they were wheeling me into the operating room I was full on shaking… I usually do that right before I start pushing. Bummer.

They did the spinal tap. Creepy. And I laid down to get cut open.

I was still shaking hardcore and it was not a good feeling to think people would be cutting into me while I was shaking…. I started dry heaving over and over but couldn’t throw up. It was terrible. For anyone who thinks a c-section is the “easy way out”, think again…

After some serious tugging I got to see my sweet Ruby Nell. They held her up to the plastic screen and I started to cry… believe it or not that was the first time I cried when seeing my baby. Usually I was almost giggly and would say things like: “My baby! My baby! Look at my baby!” 🙂 But I think all that bundled up emotion came spilling out when I finally got to see her.

They had to take her aside and do breathing treatment on her as well as pull out lots of stuff from her lungs. I didn’t get to hold her or have her next to me till after I was all stitched up. When they finally plunked her on my chest I was so ecstatic.

They wheeled me back into the room where I started throwing up…not sure what that was about.

We got wheeled from that room to a recovery room and it was a lovely room.

The recovery from a c-section has definitely been worse for me physically but for whatever reason my emotional recovery has been my best yet (I have been taking lots of supplements though including ones to improve my gallbladder health…so…who knows?)! I did have two weepy days over having a c-section…wondering if I could have really pushed the hospital and forced them to let me have a breech birth…but I have counseled myself to move on since there is nothing I can do about it now. My midwife did tell me I am a great candidate for a vbac if the Lord should choose to fill my womb again. That’s encouraging.

So. That’s it. My 7th birth. I can’t believe I have done this 7 times. It really feels like my 3rd time. I still feel like a “new mom” 🙂

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Everyone is excited about Ruby Nell…But I think Noah is the most excited 🙂
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Here she is. So perfect.

 

3 Opportune Times To Share The Gospel With Your Kids

#1 When they tell you all the good stuff they did that day.

The other day one of my littles came to me and said: “Today I did extra chores. I cleaned the downstairs without you asking and I gave my toy to my sister.” This child is one of those kiddos that really wants to please mommy and daddy. Which may sound like a good thing, and it is a good thing, but it can also lead to wanting to please peers later. I have heard some of the most rebellious children were the most compliant growing up.

Anyway, when this child shared this with me I asked: “Did you ask Jesus to help you do any of those things?” She looked at me with a peculiar face and said: “No.”

I explained that in life we will be called to do many good things and that without Jesus’ help we will become really weary. We need His help to do the many good works He has called us to. He died for us not only to be there for the next life but for this life as well. He wants to be the vine and us the branches right now!

“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” Eph. 2:10

The key part to that verse is: IN CHRIST JESUS. We must be abiding in Him in order to do the good works He has called us to.

Explaining this to our little people is so important. Good works are good, but apart from Christ they mean nothing. Our good works are like filthy rags apart from the work of the Spirit in our lives. Our children need to understand that they are doing their good works as unto the Lord while also recognizing that those good works are not what makes them righteous. It is their position in Christ that makes them righteous.

#2 When they mess up.

This is probably our most opportune time to be sharing the gospel with our children. It’s also the most opportune time to remind ourselves of the gospel.
When our children mess up we need to be an encouragement to them (unless they are in a prideful/rebellious state of mind in which we need to remind them more of the wrath of God rather than the grace of God so they do not sin more, read Romans 6:1). But usually our children are broken over their mistakes. We need to remind them during these times that that is why Christ came. Remind them that if we were perfect and could earn our way to heaven then He certainly died in vain.

#3 When they talk badly about others.

When anyone talks badly about others it is always from a place of pride. Pride comes before a fall and blocks us from seeing the cross accurately. The cross says: “You are all sinners in need of a Savior. You all fall short.” Reminding our children when they talk bad about others that they are no better than them helps them to see the cross more clearly and understand their sinfulness in a truer light. Hopefully we are setting a good example for our children in this and speaking well of others or not speaking of them at all. At the foot of the cross we are all wretched sinners in need of a Savior.

*Feel free to share in the comments the most opportune times in your home that you share the gospel with your children!

Hope to see you Mother’s Day Weekend at the upcoming marriage conference my husband and I are putting on! Great way to spend mother’s day-a night away investing in your marriage.

 

 

Forget About Your Child’s Self-Esteem

There has never been a time in history where self-esteem has been more of a focus. You can’t walk through an elementary school hallway or enter a psychologist’s office without hearing about the importance of our children having self-esteem.

I say it’s not working. In fact, I think it is making things worse! Focusing on ourselves was never our Designer’s plan! Focusing on ourselves only leads us into a downward spiral! 

Suicide rates have been climbing amongst teens despite all the world’s efforts to raise self-esteem. In an article by NPR they said: “There is one age group that really stands out — girls between the ages of 10 and 14. Though they make up a very small portion of the total suicides, the rate in that group jumped the most — it experienced the largest percent increase, tripling over 15 years from 0.5 to 1.7 per 100,000 people.”

These poor girls. They aren’t being pointed toward a God who loves them and sent His Son to die for them, they are being pointed toward a mirror and told they are beautiful and that they need to love themselves. That doesn’t work because we were made for a much greater love. We were made to direct our love and worship toward the Creator of the universe, not toward ourselves. In other words, self-esteem is really turning into a form of idol worship giving the praise and focus to the wrong person. 

Our children don’t need more self-esteem, that is an endless, vain pursuit. We were never meant to esteem ourselves but to esteem Christ.

You won’t find in the bible a verse that exhorts us to love ourselves. You will find God exhorting us to love others as we love ourselves because we already have loving ourselves down. We think about ourselves plenty.
Children are being pointed in the wrong direction and more confused and depressed than ever before. Worrying about their self-esteem is only plummeting them into deeper depression and insecurity because their identity is to be in Christ.
They are being taught to fix their gaze on themselves rather than their Maker who is the only One that can satisfy their pursuit of being fulfilled anyway.

May we repent of encouraging our children to be confident in themselves and help them place their confidence in the One that will never let them down!

Am I saying you can never say an encouraging word to your child? No. But I feel like the emphasis is in the wrong place when it comes to raising our children. The focal point of our hearts and minds is to be on Christ. If you want to encourage your children while making sure that their confidence is in Christ alone then go for it!

Love, Katie

“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” Gal. 2:20
 

“fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.” Hebrews 12:2

But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Cor. 12:9-10

Do You Let Your Husband Rebuke You?

Rebuke. Our flesh hates that word.

Coddle. Comfort. Encourage. Compliment. Our flesh likes those words!

Rebuking is loving though. Rebuking can be even more loving than comforting or encouraging because those we truly love receive not just compliments from us but the truth spoke in love from us. 

God gave us our husbands for many reasons and I think one of the best reasons is to help refine us. The Holy Spirit can use our husbands in our lives to make us more like Christ, IF WE LET HIM.

My husband has helped me SO MUCH in my weaknesses. Even though my flesh hates it, my spirit rejoices in knowing how God is using him to refine me.

Maybe you talk too much. (ahem, that would be me). Maybe your husband has told you that you dominated conversation somewhere and your flesh flared up and you defended your flapping lips by saying something like: “People like what I have to say!” and then you call your best friend that doesn’t have the guts to tell you the truth and so she coddles you and tells you: “No! You don’t talk too much.” And then you proceed to ignore your husband’s counsel only to continue in your conversation-dominating ways. 

Maybe you waste too much time on the internet and your house is losing out because of it. Maybe your husband has shared with you that he has noticed your priorities seem out of order and you get super defensive and offended saying he doesn’t appreciate how hard you work when all the while in the back of your mind you know you aren’t prioritizing keeping the home and he is totally right.

Maybe you are wasteful and your husband wants you to be more accountable with your spending…so you start to hide purchases from him rather than admitting you are buying more of what you want rather than what your family needs.

Maybe you’re a little dramatic and constantly complaining to him about other people so he tries to point out good things about the very people you are wanting to trash talk and rather than thank him you get upset and go and vent to someone else.

Maybe you worry too much. Maybe you are a total freak when it comes to your kids being sick and your husband is just trying to help you look on the bright side. Rather than thanking him you yell at him and tell him he doesn’t care about the children.

Maybe your relationship with your children is suffering because of your anger or lack of affection toward your children or any other number of things you do or don’t do. Maybe your husband tries to give you some counsel on how to love them better and you proceed to point out all of the ways he’s failing as a father.

There are SO MANY THINGS that we need to work on and change in order to be more self-controlled, God-honoring women. Who better to help us in this than the man who sees us day in and day out in the raw?! Who better to help point out where we can grow than the man who is best acquainted with our weaknesses?!

No, it’s never fun to hear about ways we may be “failing” or struggling in… but this life isn’t all about us never facing the truth. God wants to walk with us in our journey toward Christ-likeness and He wants to use our husbands to help us in this journey! Don’t inhibit what God wants to do through your husband. Pray for humility and a heart to grow more than a heart that wants to walk in pride and never be challenged.

Proverbs 9:8-9 could be written like this for us as wives: “Do not reprove a scoffer, or she will hate you; reprove a wise woman, and she will love you. Give instruction to a wise woman, and she will be still wiser; teach a righteous woman, and she will increase in learning.”

The opposite could be true too:

A scoffing wife hates her husband. When you reprove her she will reject your reproof. When a husband seeks to give instruction to an unwise wife she will refuse to be wiser and she will continue to decrease in her learning…

Don’t be a scoffing wife. Be a righteous, wise wife who considers her husband’s counsel…even when it hurts!

Love, Katie

 

 

3 Things I Do To Make The House Run More Smoothly

So many things to do. So many ways to do them. Here are three ways I do things to make our house with 6 children 10 and under run more smoothly.

1. Set a timer. I love my little black and white timer. We have a schedule that is blocked out in 30 minute increments. We set the timer at the beginning of each 30 min. time increment and the kiddos go to their name to see what they are supposed to do during that block of time. One of my biggest tips that involves the timer is what I call: “12 item pick up!” Every time the timer goes off the kids know they need to run around and pick up 12 items. This has changed recently though. I have my 3 year old only pick up 5 things and my 9 year old checks laundry (making sure no rooms have dirty laundry in them, if they do he brings it to the laundry room. He also switches the laundry over and brings clean dry laundry out to living room where I or my 7 year old sorts it and puts it in the right room). This helps in the upkeep of the house SO MUCH.

This is the timer I have. Only $5!

This is what my daily schedule looks like. Super blurry pic but just wanted to give you a glimpse:

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Here is the book I used to make up this schedule. I HIGHLY recommend it!

2. Subscribe and Save. I LOVE THIS! We hardly ever run out of: paper towels, paper plates, toilet paper etc. And I get an additional 15% off of the already low price!

Here are two tips in doing subscribe and save:
1) Make sure you check them every time you get an email from amazon saying: “Review Your Monthly Subscription Delivery”. Many people ignore this and get frustrated when the toilet paper shows up at their door and they have no place to put it because they have so much toilet paper already from the last delivery.
2) Be accurate in how often you receive the item. If you really only use some item every 3 months make sure your delivery button isn’t activated for a delivery every month. Make sense?

Here are some of my subscribe and save items:

3. Jurisdictions. Major game changer. I felt like my days were consisting of arguing over who did what. So I assigned each child (except for my 1 year old) a jurisdiction that they were responsible for every day. No, I don’t have a spinny wheel to spin and get a chore. I don’t “change it up” and have them do a different one each month to make it fair. Life isn’t fair and I am sure in the future my children will have to do the same things day in and out because that’s how life is and so, they have the same jurisdiction every day.

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Ricky, age 9, has the dining room every day. Johnny, age 7, has the living room every day (and because the laundry gets dumped on the couches when clean, he also sorts the laundry and puts it in the correct rooms). Rhea, age 10, has the kitchen every day. Chloe, age 3, unloads the dishwasher every day. Charis, age 5, cleans the girl’s room (including putting all the clothes away) every day. Throughout the day I will say: “Jurisdictions everyone!” There is no confusion. They all know what that means 🙂 We automatically do them after every meal and before bed.

Love, Katie

Be sure to check out my husband’s books! Both 5 stars on Amazon!