Archives for May 2013

Nothing Should Supersede Our Love for God

I believe that we all want to live a life of comfort–a life that is free from worry about finances. Pope Francis in one of his homilies tells us that this very, culture of economic comfort deprives us of closeness to the Lord.”

Of course there is nothing wrong about wanting to live comfortably. Are we allowing our love for comfort supersede our love for God? Nothing should supersede our love for God. We can wish for a good life, but we must be careful that we do not wish for more than we actually need. More so, we must see to it that we do not become so engrossed with gaining financial freedom that we lose sight of God’s love.

We must not allow ourselves to be too attached and obsessed with gaining comforts in this world that we miss out on gaining heavenly treasures.

Do not let the economic turmoil of the world pull you away from God. As He said in Hebrews 13:5, “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” Just remember that nothing should supersede our love for God, and that’s that.

Ask and It Will Be Given to You

Reading the post, “Knock and It Shall Be Opened,” prompted me to reflect on the encouraging words of Jesus in Matthew 7:7-8, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find;  knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.”

Reading this text makes me feel very blessed. Imagine how privileged we are to have the maker of the entire Universe tell us how we can have all that we need–ask, seek and knock. Yes, this is a three-step process. Ask and it will be given to you if you take the necessary steps.

Step 1. Ask. We need to humbly come to God in prayer and acknowledge that we are in need of his help.

Step 2. Seek. Asking is not enough. You need to add diligence, determination and action to asking. Seeking in prayer means

God’s Loving and Gentle Correction

I’d like to share with you a very beautiful and inspiring line I read from article on Catholic.org titled, “Receiving the Eucharist: I Have Decided to Kneel For Jesus.” It has to do with God’s loving and gentle correction, and how it makes the author feel.

It never ceases to amaze me how patient and gentle God is with me. The perfect Father, He knows just how and when to reach me. Never impetuous, like me, He redirects and corrects a little here and a bit there as the gardener who sets out to straighten a bent tree.

A lot of people think that God uses physical, emotional, or financial trials and adversities to correct his children. I beg to differ though. I don’t think that our loving Heavenly Father could afford to send us sickness and disease, trials and tribulations just to teach us a lesson–to correct us when we go astray. Instead of chastising us with hard blows to make us realize our wrongs, I believe that God lets us see the direction that we are heading, illuminate the dangers in front of us and gently guide us back to the right course. God’s loving and gentle correction is Him showing us the path to salvation.

Remembering What God Has Done For You in the Past

A question from a blog post titled, “Fan The Flame Friday,” inspired this post today. The question was: “Why is it so important to remember what God has done for us in the past?” Remembering what God has done for you is critical to being a Christian.

Humans have the propensity to forget about God and His goodness. Even the Israelites in the past who had a more close contact with God failed to remember him numerous times. The psalmist King David talked of this tendency in Psalm 78:10-11, “They kept not the covenant of God . . . and forgot his works, and his wonders that he had shewed them.” This very trait of the Israelites is one of the main reasons why they found themselves in a lot of perilous situations–why it took them over 40 years to reach the Promised Land.

Remembering what God has done for us is foundational for living the Christian life. Constantly recalling God’s blessings and deliverance in the past will help us keep our sense of awe and wonder of God’s greatness. By keeping a clear memory of what God did for us, we will be able to face every affliction that rises and say, “My God has helped my before, and he will do it again.”

Vacationing Without Your Kids

I have a few acquaintances who think that is never OK to go on a vacation without their kids. While I understand where they are coming from, I have always believed that time away from our kids is an important element of parenting–positive parenting that is.

The first time we decided to travel out of town without our kids, I spent a great amount of time debating with myself as to whether we should cancel the trip. My parents, husband, and friends kept telling me that I needed and deserved the break. While one part of me yearned for leisurely strolls, unhurried meals, and long, uninterrupted conversations with my husband, the other part of my felt anxious and guilty about doing the trip. Eventually, I was convinced to take the trip, and I was happy that I did. Vacationing without your kids is something your will probably end up doing at some point.

Spending time away from our kids is indeed scary and anxiety-inducing. Nevertheless, it is an important thing we must give to ourselves if we want to remain the loving, caring, and dedicated moms that we are. If we don’t take a break from the daily stressed involved in raising our kids, we are likely going to end up feeling resentful and burned out and not be able to have healthy interactions with our family.

If you want to know more about the benefits of going on trips without your kids, here is a post I would recommend: “5 Ways Vacations Without the Baby Will Make You a Better Parent.”

How about you? What do you think about vacationing without your kids?

The Power of Prayer in Trying Times

Another heart breaking tragedy has hit our nation, this time in the form of a massive tornado. While my family and I are thankful that we were not put through such a horrible calamity, we cannot help but shed a tear for all those who are affected by it. We would like to bring comfort to everyone who is affected by the disaster, we cannot be there for them physically. However, this does not mean that there’s nothing we can do for them. The power of prayer is always available to those who seek it.

As they say, you always have something to give. We may think that there is nothing we can offer others, but the truth is, there is always something that we can do to help. How? Pray–yes, we can give them the powerful gift of prayer. The spirit of love we share with them, magnified through prayer, reaches across the miles to comfort and bless all whose lives have been affected by the calamity. “Our Blessed Pope Francis urged us all to Join Hands And Prayer For Our Brothers And Sisters In Oklahoma. The power of prayer should not go overlooked.

I urge you to say this prayer with me:

Compassionate God, source of all comfort,
We pray for the people whose lives have devastated by rain and flood.
Bring them comfort, we pray.
Protect the vulnerable.
Strengthen the weak.
Keep at bay the spread of disease.
Have mercy on all those working to rescue the stranded and to feed the hungry.
And may our response to their suffering be generous and bring you praise.

For we ask it in Jesus Name, Amen.

Christian Aid

Never forget about the power of prayer. When you feel helpless turn to God in prayer.

God’s Constant and Unconditional Love

I stumbled onto “Always Loved” this morning and it reminded me of just how great God’s love for me is. His love for me is unconditional and undeserved. It reaches beyond my behavior, my circumstances, and my sin. There is certainly no one else in the entire universe that can love me the way God loves me. God’s constant and unconditional love is a beautiful thing.

God knows me–all my flaws and my weaknesses. He knows how sinful, weak, and disobedient I am. Yet, his love for me never ceases and never changes. As if sending his only Son Jesus to die in my place at the cross of Calvary was not enough, the Lord reminds me of his love everyday by showering me with bountiful blessings and taking me through life’s rough patches.

Isn’t it wonderful to know that no matter how many times we fall off-track or run away from him, our Heavenly Father will always take us back with open arms and love? I am so thankful for God’s constant and unconditional love.

Thank you Lord for your unfathomable love for me!

Don’t Leave Your Child in the Car

Lately, I have been reading a lot of articles about the dangers of leaving kids in the backseat of our cars. I feel this like goes without saying (apparently not), but don’t leave your child in the car! However, I have never had the urge to write about it until I read this post: “A Parent’s Worst Nightmare.” The post made me realize that this horrible accident can indeed happen to anyone–even to the most caring, loving parent.

Statistics show that as much as 37 children die every year after they were unintentionally left in a vehicle. So please parents, don’t leave your child in the car! To make sure that you don’t lose your child to such a horrible accident, these tips from Safe Kids USA could help you:

  • Immediately 911 if you see a child unattended in a vehicle.
  • Never leave children alone in a vehicle – not even for 1 minute and not even with the window slightly open.
  • Teach children not to play in any vehicle.
  • Check to ensure all children leave the vehicle when you reach your destination–especially sleeping infants.
  • Set a reminder in your phone, PDA, etc to be sure you drop your child off at daycare.
  • Place something that you will need at your next stop – for example a purse, lunch, cell phone, PDA, gym bag, or briefcase – on the floor of the backseat in front of where the child is sitting.
  • Keep car doors and trunks locked so children cannot play in them, especially when at home.
  • Check cars and trunks first if a child goes missing.

The Effects of Shaming Children are Not Positive

I read an article this morning that I 100% agree with–“Shame Does Not Teach Children to Do Better.” I have seen a few parents on the internet advocating “shaming” as a disciplinary tactic. No matter how much I try to see something positive from this practice, I just can’t find anything. The effects of shaming children are not positive nor have they ever been.

Frankly, I would say that “shaming” is a form of emotional abuse. Some parents may say that it is an effective way to teach a child a lesson. I think that shaming does more than teach kids a lesson, it scars them for life. Well yes, you may be instilling a lesson in your kid’s mind when you humiliate them but at what cost? Ample evidence from academic research that shows that children who are consistently shamed as a punishment grow up to be depressed, anxious, and less confident than others. You could probably guess that the effects of shaming children are not positive, but parents still continue to do it.

As in everything in life, quick fixes are not good. With shaming, you may be able to stop the initial problem fast, but in exchange you are causing some serious damages to your child–damages that will affect them for life.

How Do You Treat Your Child’s Teacher?

I read a post this morning that I think is worth sharing with all of you–“How to Treat a Teacher Right.” Although none of my kids are in school yet, my eldest will be entering formal education soon so I am kind of into these sort of things now. When my eldest goes to school, I want to be as helpful as I can be–not only to him but also to everyone who is involved in his care and education.

Being a mother, I know how difficult it is to be around kids–supervise them, teach them etc. So I could imagine how tough a teacher’s job is–being supervisor to a handful of children. How do you treat your child’s teacher? I have a few friends who are not in the best terms with their children’s teacher and I do not see anything positive coming from such rifts. So I would want to prepare myself so I could better understand my kid’s future teacher and have the best relationship with him/her.

So how do you treat your child’s teacher? How do you maintain a positive relationship with him/her?