Stay True to Self

When a new year comes, there are so many things we notice about ourselves, that we consider changing everything about us.  We consider changing our physical selves as well as our outlook.

Sometimes in the process, we lose the purpose or reason why we thought we needed to change in the first place.  Are we really that bad of a person that we need to change our whole self? Inside and out?  Should our thoughts and actions meet someone else’s approval?

You were created by a Heavenly Father who made you fearfully and wonderfully.  He chose you to be the way you are:  His!  We grow in and out of God throughout our lives trying to fit the standards of what other people think we should be or act.  If we would just Stay True to Self, you know, the one God created us to be, then we wouldn’t need to fix whatever we think isn’t right with our lives.

Be honest with yourself.  Who are you changing for?  Is it just you or someone else?  What are you trying to prove?  Who are you trying to prove it to and why?  If you feel you need to change, you need to ask God to help you and make sure it’s for you and Him.  God can help you discern what you need to change and why.

Staying true to self is hard work!  You have to believe in yourself and who God created you to be.  You have to have high standards and stand by them.  You have to ask God to guard your heart and body from people who want to change you into the standard of the world.  You have to have morals, character and Don’t Settle!

You are too precious to God to think you are less than His Princess.  He loves you just the way you are!

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.  My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.  Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.  Psalm 139:14-16 NIV

 

Where you are is where you’re suppose to be!

Today during a book signing I was invited to attend, I met some wonderful people.  I connected with young and older people, talked to them and shared my book with them.  When you obey God and let Him lead you to the places He wants you to go, He blesses you by blessing others.

 

Let me explain.  I met a lady who asked about my book.  I explained the book to her and she decided to buy one.  I asked her who I should sign it for and she said, “Macy, my granddaughter.”  I said, “ Oh, Wow, my daughter’s name is Macy and this book is about her and my younger daughter.”  What a coincidence.  During our conversation, we talked about God and how he works in our lives.  She shared about her week and the things God showed her.  As we were talking I mentioned some things that God does in our lives that she confirmed had happened to her this past week.  I didn’t know her.  I had never met her before today.  I felt confident talking with her about how gracious God is and how much he loves us and how he helps us find His way.  How not every job is our job and how he put people in our path to bless and how it blesses us.

 

When she left, I felt proud to know all the things to say.  I felt confident how I allowed God to use me to bless this fine lady who needed confirmation of following the right path.  I felt blessed and secure in my relationship with my Heavenly Father who loves me and leads me well.  At that exact moment, I was there for her.  I was where I was suppose to be.  Thank you, God for this wonderful opportunity to share with her and confirm what you were telling her.  Thank you for using me and my life to bless others.  Thank you for all the things along this path that scares me, but makes me brave to move forward.  Thank you for holding my hand and leading me where you need me to go.

 

The day ended with me having a similar conversation with a young girl.  We talked about school, band, chorus and God.  She wanted to be in Bible Club, but it was held during the time of the Yearbook.  She is on the Yearbook staff.  She is a christ-follower and said she gave her heart to God when she was 3 and a few other times growing up, just to be sure.  She didn’t have enough money to buy my book, so I gave her one.  She is going places, that girl, she has BIG dreams.  Thank you God for opportunities to listen to others about you and to share your wisdom with them.

 

Be a beacon, shine your light for others!  And remember God knows what He’s doing and where you are is where you’re suppose to be, at the moment!

Giving Back

Everyone always tells their kids, “You’re too little!” But I believe you are never too little. You are never too little to dream. You are never too little to feel. You are never too little to help. And you are definitely never too little to give back. I teach my students to do all these things because helping others is our way of making sure someone else dreams too!

I know a young man doing just this all on his own. His name is Sam. Sam founded Wyatt’s Garage. He creates hats that are destressed to give them an antique look. Each of them comes with a collectible, vintage patch.

Wyatt’s Garage: Style + Giving

About:

My name is Sam Wyatt. I am the 12-year-old CEO and founder of Wyatt’s Garage. My company was born out of my love for collectibles and helping people. Every Wyatt’s Garage Hat is one-of-a-kind, and for each hat sold, another will be donated to a pediatric cancer treatment center. (wyattsgarage.com) He also gives tablets and gift cards to the patients to ease their norm. He leads by example. This young man has been giving 100% proceeds to the Hurricane Funds of Texas and Puerto Rico. You can buy a hat or give as little as $5.00 to help support the hurricane victims living there.

When we learn to help others we take the focus off ourselves and put it on someone else. My friend Abigail said, “Choose service over self while waiting for your dreams to be fulfilled.” I believe Sam is doing this while he waits to grow up. I can’t wait to see what his grown-up self has planned for him!

I bought a hat because I wanted to give back. As I wait for my hat to get here, I get so emotional about how someone so small can do something so big! It fills my heart with so much joy to be a part of something so wonderful. Littles are my life! Eight years of teaching has showed me how important it is to give everything to them, to show them the how and why of life and the how and why of love. Sam shows this through his service. Someone has taught him well and I thank you!

10-2-17

So, I got my hat today! I was so excited!! It was like opening a Christmas gift! I felt like a kid opening the package and I love it! I thought about all the kids who get to open up their hats when people donate or buy a hat. I wonder if they are as excited as I was opening mine. I hope so! It is so worth it. My grandson said, “I don’t like your hat, but it looks good on you!” Then he decided that he wanted one with dinosaurs on it.

What you should know about me is that I’m not a hat person. I don’t wear hats. But I’ve been following Sam for a while and I love how he takes care of others and puts them first. I wanted to be a part of that, plus my grandson decided we should go fishing. So now I have a fishing hat! Thanks, Wyatt’s Garage!

Visit Wyattsgarage.com to donate or buy at hat. Wear one yourself, give one as a gift or donate so that a child may have one, too. Give of yourself, pay it forward, support a cure for cancer; it all matters, every life matters!

Things I Want My First Graders to Know

I love you!

I believe in you!

You are destined for great things!

After the first week of school and bringing homework home every night and thinking of my little students, I wrote this over the weekend. I wanted them to know how important they are. That you’re not too little to dream, to do great things and to be loved just for being themselves!

I posted it in my classroom and then went over it with them, so they could understand what I was trying to tell them. So they would know who they are and that they are important. So that they would know how I felt about them and that I wasn’t afraid to show it. Then, I read, “You Are Wonderfully and Beautifully Made”, my first authored book. The same words written in that book made a connection to the words I wrote on that poster. That book was written in 2014, three years later I’ve written different words with the same meaning to little ones who deserve to know how special they are.

On Sunday in church while I was worshipping my Heavenly Father,   He reminded me that the words I wrote for my students He wrote for me. I love you! I believe in you! You are destined for great things! And most recently, I’m so proud of you! He created me to be the very person you see today. He purposed me to love, teach and treasure little ones who need to know they are not mistakes or unwanted! They are worthy and highly thought of. They are also purposed to do great things that He created them to be. When they hear they this, their eyes get wide and their mouths open. They look at each other and have the biggest smiles on their faces. Then they know that they are wonderfully and beautifully made.

You are too! You were created on purpose, for a purpose. He knew you way before you were conceived! He wanted you, He needed you! He loves you! He believes in you! He destined you for great things! I know some of you don’t believe in God and that’s ok! It is a choice. But fortunately, you were created by the same Heavenly Father as I! And you too, are wonderfully and beautifully made!

1 You have searched me, Lord, and you know me. 2 You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. 3   You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. 4 Before a word is on my tongue, you, Lord, know it completely. 5 You hem me in behind and before, and you lay your hand upon me. 6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain. 7 Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?   8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. 9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea. 10 even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. 11 If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,” 12   even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day,   for darkness is as light to you. 13 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. 14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful I know that full well. 15 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place,   when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. 16 Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. 17 How precious to me are your thoughts,[a] God How vast is the sum of them! 18 Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand— when I awake, I am still with you. Psalm 139:1-18

Teachers, Prepare To Fight!

As you are preparing for your first day of the new school year, remember to put on the full armor of God. Every day you step into your school and classroom, the enemy will try to fight you through the students, parents, other teachers, administers, county, state and national leaders. He will make you feel insecure, useless, hopeless, and defeated.   You must be prepared to fight back and stand up for what you know is right!

Ephesians 6:10-18

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.

A wonderful and lovely friend reminded me of this passage this morning. The enemy wants our students and schools to fail, so we feel like failures. If our focus is on us and our failures, then the enemy knows it won’t be on God.  But if we put on the armor of God and pray our way through, this very first day of the new school year will be a breeze. In Romans 8:31, it says, “what, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?” And we all know that God wins in the end, right? (smile inserted)

So as you put on your clothes, jewelry, shoes, etc., remember the put on the armor of God to protect you against any evil thing that may come your way. Ask God to come into your classroom and school and to help you be strong and face what may very well be your best year yet!

You are in my prayers! Have a GREAT First Day!

Feeling Defeated and It’s OK!

Sometimes I just feel defeated. No matter how long or hard I pray, no matter how much scripture I read, no matter the truths and promises I remember God said! The last couple of days I have and it’s OK.

I believe some of you will think this is nuts. I am a Christian, a Christ-follower. How in the world can she feel defeated and say, “It’s OK! It’s because of my relationship with God that I can say, “It’s OK.” God knows me because He created me! He knows my strengths and my weaknesses. He knows what makes me feel at peace and feel defeated. He knows there is an enemy that knows these things as well.

I found out yesterday, the job I wanted was given to someone else. Then today, I went on another interview and did my very best as always, but in the car, I talked myself into feeling defeated. How many times before have you done this? One word, one phrase, something about your past, a question they ask you about a past position and you know it’s over, you blew it! If they really, really knew you, man would they love you and want to hire you on the spot.

I didn’t read my “Jesus Calling” devotion yesterday. I read both June 13 and 14th today. Man, what a difference it made. Even though I read it before my interview during my morning “Me” time, I remembered what it said. It penetrated my heart, I longed to read again and believe it. I knew it to be the truth. It was God’s word, his sweet words to me. Telling me He loves me and my faults and weaknesses. Telling me something better is waiting for me, something He created just for me!  It said,“God is creating something new in me! My sinful natures, my passions and my desires have been crucified with Christ! I will keep in step with His spirit! I was chosen by God who loves me with an everlasting love! I am His!” (My paraphrasing) John 3:8, 1 Peter 2:9

My sinful natures of wanting and desiring something so bad, it takes me away from Him; My peace! When I wasn’t worried about finding another job, worried about money or anything else, I had Peace! I like that feeling. It’s hard, not worrying is hard, but knowing that I have a Savior who loves me and cares about me makes it easier. I know if I meet him and call out to him, He will hear me and give me comfort. He will give me Peace!

Tomorrow I get to be with wonderful, loving children who don’t care about what job I want or how much money I make. They’re just glad I showed up to spend time with them. And that’s just where I want to be. His Peace=My Life!

I by far don’t have all the answers, but what I do know is that God loves you and knows you! He created you with strengths and weaknesses. He made you special! He has special things for you, things for you to see and do! That’s right, just you! Trust Him, love Him and call to Him and He will bring you Peace! And it will be OK!

Children and Technology: What is Appropriate?

In our technological society today, we pick up a child from school and give them a phone or tablet and we don’t have to engage with them, talk about their day or even speak to them. I am so guilty of this also. It’s so easy to do this, but what happens is we allow our children to learn from the internet. Do we really want our 3-16 year olds watching YouTube videos of whatever in the car or in their rooms all alone? Do we really know what they are watching? Do we want to have to re-teach simple skills to our children because we were too busy or to lazy?

I find myself in this web (literally) every Sunday afternoon. It’s my quiet time, my me time, time to myself. But when my grandson is finished playing outside with friends, he goes into his room to play video games and watch YouTube. I’m not saying YouTube is bad, I’m saying we need to monitor what our children watch and listen to. They can learn a lot from what they see on the TV, internet and video games, but not in a good way.

Then they bring this knowledge to school, church, shopping, etc. And it is not appropriate. They can’t separate from what they see because they haven’t been taught the difference. Some children believe that what is happening on TV is real or what is being said they can say. But they can’t!

Children need to see us, hear us and listen to us. We need to see our children, hear our children and listen to our children. The worst scenario is at a restaurant where mom and dad are on the phone and the children are bored because they aren’t doing anything. So they are fighting with the silverware, sugar, ketchup or whatever they can find and get reprimanded because they are making a mess.

Talk to your children, find out what they are interested in and let them know what you’re interested in. Have a conversation! Make up a story! Sing songs, make up songs, read a book together or tell a joke and laughed so hard you want to pee on yourself. Be all there! I know, that’s me too! My grandson and I have the most fun doing this at bedtime.   And what really funny is we are not getting ourselves sleepy by doing this. We are actually keeping ourselves awake, but we are having fun.

Find some way to connect to your child and keep them away from things you know are too old for them and things they spend way too much time on. The internet is an interesting and helpful place, but only if used appropriately.