Rest

It’s something that I don’t do well. Honestly, I thrive on the thrill of constantly being on the go. But lately I have felt so worn out.

I normally try and keep things positive around here, but today I’m struggling. And I feel that, maybe, you may be struggling too.

Life at the moment is so crazy. If I could only tell you what all is on my plate, you would probably tell me that I’m insane.

And today, it’s weighing me down and I’m just trying to hold it all together.

You probably have many hats you are currently juggling. Between being a good wife and making sure your kids get to where they need to be, the laundry (ugh), the meals, the cleaning, the doctor’s appointments, the homework, the grocery shopping…etc. And then if you work from home or outside of the home, you have responsibilities there as well.

For the most part, you keep it all together but every now and then it collapses and you just need to step away and take a day.

I’m here to tell you that it’s ok to step away. It’s ok to stop something you are doing. We have to reevaluate and re-prioritize sometimes. When responsibilities are added to our plates, we may need to let something else go.

We may need to learn to say, “no”.

If you are currently feeling overwhelmed with life, I want to take today and pray for you.

Dear Heavenly Father,

I just want to lift my sister up who is currently at the end of her rope. She is balancing all of her plates and one of them is about to fall and break. She is giving her all in too many things and it’s leaving her exhausted, frustrated, drained and completely empty. She doesn’t have much more to give. I’m asking you Jesus to give her the rest she desperately needs. Help her step back and see what is causing her stress. Allow her to pull back from anything that is not bringing her peace at the moment. I pray that right now you will give her strength. Your word says that you are our strength when we are weak, and Lord we are so weak. You give rest to the weary and today, we need that rest. We need your peace. I pray that today, she will be able to feel your presence in a way that she’s never felt it before. Help us get through our day. Allow us to do the things that we need to do. Help us find that joy that can only be found in you. Help us rest in you, today.

Friend, I’m with you. I know how you feel. I understand you. Don’t lose sight of who you are. And especially don’t lose sight of God. Keep Him as your focus. Rely on Him. Talk to Him. Pour it all out.

I loved this quote I shared on Instagram last night…

“A strong woman loves, forgives, walks away, lets go, tries again, perseveres… no matter what life throws at her.”

But I want to add to that quote. The only way that we are strong is through Christ. And because of Him, we can do all of those things.

I hope you have a great day. You know that you can always reach out to me if you need anything.

XO

Nothing Can Stand Against The Power Of Our God

The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still. Exodus 14:14

We all have times in our lives when we feel like our back is up against the wall. We have times in our lives where we feel stuck in a situation where our first instinct is to fight back, lash out and put people in their place.

But today, God reminded me that the battle is not mine. The battle is His and He needs me to be still.

This battle I’m fighting. It’s not mine to fight. It’s His. He’s got this. He’s fighting for me.

And He’s doing the same for you. God’s got this, friend. Whatever battle you are fighting, let Him fight for you. Be still and get out of His way and let Him work.

Drop to your knees and fight with prayer. Fight on your knees. Lay all your fears, struggles, frustrations at his feet. Let Him deal with those. Let Him defend you.

The Lord is your mighty defender, perfect and just in all his ways; Your God is faithful and true; he does what is right and fair. Deuteronomy 32:4

You have a choice. Be still, trust and let Him fight for you. Or freak out and possibly make it worse. Which will you choose today?

XO

Are You Control Freak?

One of the bloggers that I love recommended this book and loved it! You can read her post about it, here. She gave it a great review and even said it was one of the best faith-based books she’s ever read.

It’s a memoir about a mom letting go of control in her life/work/family/everything. Here’s the description on the back of the book. I tried to paraphrase, but it was so good and I wanted you to read it.

It’s time to get our control under control.Jennifer Dukes Lee never thought she struggled with control. As long as everything went exactly the way she wanted it to, she was totally flexible.But then Jennifer discovered what happens when you try to wrap your arms around everything, thinking it’s all on you: You get burned out on hustle. You toss and turn more at night, and you laugh less during the day. You’re so busy-caring, serving, working, and trying so hard-that you can’t even hear God’s voice anymore.It’s All Under Control is a book for every woman who is hanging on tight and trying to get each day right-yet finding that life often feels out of control and chaotic. Join Jennifer on the journey of learning how to:

  • Overcome the anxieties and worries that burden your heart
  • Prioritize your busy life so you can make choices that align with God’s best for you
  • Find freedom through a new “Do, Delegate, or Dismiss” approach to your daily tasks
  • Let go of what God has not asked you to do, so you can shine at what he has

Discover a new way of living that will free you to be you, and finally experience the peace of knowing a God who truly has it all under control.

I don’t know about you, but I’m a major control freak. Not having control throws me into a major panic. I freak out on my husband and my kids and completely ruin the day when I feel like I’ve lost control.

I definitely have come a long way, but there are seasons in my life where I feel the control freak in me begin to rise from the dead, ha! That is me right now.

I have a lot of hats that I am juggling right now and feel so frazzled because I don’t feel in control most days. So needless to say, I need this book now. I needed it weeks ago.

I wasn’t going to share this book until after I read it, but I felt like God was telling me that someone needs to read this book as much as I do.

I’d love for you to read it with me! I’m going to try my best to read one chapter per day. I’d recommend buying it from Target or christianbook.com. For some reason Amazon was tricky with this one. I’ve ordered this book THREE times. Twice it was lost and never showed up. I decided to try one more time and I finally got it. So just a heads up on that.

I’ll include the Target link at the end of this post.

I hope y’all have the BEST day! We are halfway through the week and the weekend is again, in sight. Love you all!

XO

Let it Go – Forgiveness is Possible

Morning, friends!

A couple of days ago, something happened that triggered some old feelings of unforgiveness. I completely lost it and started crying, which doesn’t happen often.

Losing it like that made me question my decision to forgive in the first place. I became frustrated with myself for letting something that I’ve already dealt with have that impact on me again.

Ugh. Forgiving is hard, but forgetting is even harder.

I started Lysa TerKeurst’s The Forgiving Journal this week. It’s a companion to her new book Forgiving What You Can’t Forget. I was supposed to do a Bible study on it last month, but wasn’t able to. But now I see why. God knew that I would need it this week more than I did last month. God’s timing. It’s always perfect.

I want to share one of the points that she makes about forgiveness in her introduction because it encouraged me.

She writes that forgiveness is a choice, but it’s also a process and healing is a long journey. Did you catch the last part? Healing isn’t instant. It takes time. There will be triggers that remind us of our pain. And that doesn’t mean that our decision to forgive was fake…it just means that there’s more to be done. Forgiving the facts of what happened is done in a moment. But the process of working though all of the emotions from the impact of what happened will take time (Lysa TerKeurst).

I don’t know where you are in your journey to forgive. But I want to encourage you today to take that first step towards forgiveness.

Forgiving someone doesn’t make what they did to you right. But what forgiving does do is set you free. You are causing yourself more anguish and pain by holding on to all the bitterness and pain.

“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” Ephesians 4: 31-32

I know right now it may seem nearly impossible to forgive. And in our own strength, it sure is. But with God, it is more than possible.

The healing journey will not be easy. And at times it may be a very lonely season, but with God we are never fully alone. We may feel like we are being set aside during those times of loneliness when actually, God is setting us apart for a greater purpose. During those hard times, He is molding you and challenging you so that you may grow more fully into the person that He has created you to be.

Stop holding on. Release your hand and let go.

Forgiveness is possible. And it’s is good. Your heart is much too beautiful a place for I healed pain. Your soul is much too deserving of new possibilities to stay stuck here. And today is the perfect day to start taking steps on this unexpected, miraculous pathway to healing.” Lysa TerKeurst

This journey has been long and hard. But it’s been rewarding and full of blessings. I’ve been able to see God’s love for me and depend on Him for my significance and acceptance. Forgiveness doesn’t always mean that things will go back to the way they were. It doesn’t mean reconciliation will happen, but I’ve learned that there’s a reason for that. There’s a reason why God isn’t allowing that relationship back into your life. And when you accept that and move forward, you will be able to freely walk right where God has you.

There may be moments when it’s just you and Him. And that’s ok. He wants you to learn to depend on Him like you’ve never done before. He is enough for you and He wants you to believe that for yourself.

He is enough.

In His time, He will bring new relationships and friendships into your life. And you will see that his love for you is indeed unfailing. You will experience His love that reaches to the heavens and His faithfulness that stretches to the sky.

My journey has made such a mark in my life that I decided to make sure I never forget it.

But I am like an olive tree flourishing in the house of God; I trust in God’s unfailing love for ever and ever.
Psalms 52:8

I wanted a constant reminder that I have a choice to extend the olive branch. I have the choice to forgive.

But my olive branch tattoo is also a reminder that like that olive in its natural state, I can be hard and bitter. That olive goes through a process of washing, breaking, grinding, soaking, mixing and pressing. But in the end, it is able to be used for its intended purpose.

We are like that olive. We are hard and bitter and the journey to become the person God created us to be will take time. God washes us of our sins, breaks every chain and soaks us in His Word. The process doesn’t take place overnight. It takes time. But rest assured that even though we are being pressed and broken from all sides, it’s all part of the process. He is refining us and preparing us. It’s all part of His perfect plan.

“We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed… Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:8-9,16-18

This verse reminds me of the song that says, We are pressed but not crushed. Persecuted but not abandoned. Struck down but not destroy. We are blessed beyond the curse. For His promise will endure. And His joy will be our strength.

You may feel like you can’t take anymore pain. Rest in Him. Give Him your pain. You will not be crushed or destroyed.

You are not alone in this journey. I’ve been there. I am still going through it. But through it all, God is showing me more of Himself and is my constant comfort and friend. And He can be the same for you.

Forgive, friend. Let go of the bitterness and grudge. Let God work in your life, today.

I love you, friends. And I hope today encourages you and challenges you.

XO

Our Big Pop, A Man After God’s Own Heart

On Sunday, our Big Pop went home to be with Jesus.

Big Pop was a man of God. He loved the Lord with all of His heart, mind and soul and loved His family so very much.

The way that he lived and was loved by everyone is a true testament of who Big Pop was. He was kind, selfless, patient, joyful, giving, a hard worker, a true servant who loved everyone no matter who they were.

I am so thankful for his example. And I am blessed to have been a part of his life. It’s an honor to call him my Big Pop.

During the viewing yesterday, they had his Bible out on one of the table displays. I wasn’t prepared for the way that God would speak to me as I picked up his Bible and held it in my hands.

You see, this was no ordinary Bible. It was Big Pop’s Bible and there was no denying that.

It’s engraved with his name and clearly it was used. You wouldn’t think an old Bible that is falling apart would be beautiful, but it sure is.

Inside of the Bible, there were notes written by Big Pop. These notes included dates which I assume are dates where he read certain passages. They also included things like when he had surgery or when he was diagnosed with cancer. He also wrote the date when Joseph preached his first sermon years ago.

If someone was sick, he wrote it in the margin with the date. He also included dates of wars, doctor’s appointments, presidential election results and who was playing in that year’s Super Bowl. He even wrote the date when Uncle Donnie got a new truck and when our nephew was saved. He was so very proud of his family.

He wrote it all down. The good, the bad, the highs and the lows.

It was all written down in his Bible. And I have no doubt that not only did he sit and read God’s Word, but as he wrote things down he talked to God about them.

This Bible sat on the table beside his chair and he read it every single day. There are even notes written from just a couple of weeks ago. He was so very sick and didn’t have much strength, but up until the end of his life he stayed in God’s Word.

As I held his Bible, I could feel God’s presence. I could feel the prayers and the love in Big Pop’s heart. And it challenged me. It made me ask myself the question, “what will my Bible look like when I’m gone?”

Will my children hold it in their hands as they share it with their grandchildren? Will they see that God was my priority? Will they see that I thought of them and prayed for them every single day?

Is my Bible on my table collecting dust or is it being read every single day?

Most importantly, will my Bible give them comfort knowing that I am in heaven? Because as I read Big Pop’s writing, there is no doubt of where he is now. And that bring me comfort. This Bible brings me joy knowing that Big Pop is right where he knew he would be.

When Jesus Comes, We Will Go Home

Big Pop knew God and He knew what His future held. He strived each day to know God more that day than he did the day before. There’s no telling how many times he read certain passages.

This morning in my reading, I read Micah 6:6-8 and it made me think of Big Pop.

With what shall I come before the LORD and bow down before the exalted God? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousand rivers of olive oil? Shall I offer my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.

So often, we want to work our way to salvation and God’s love. We think, only if we could do more or be better that God would love us more. But in this passage, God answers what is required of us. And it’s a simple message.

Do Justice. Love kindness. Walk humbly with God.

“These qualities of the heart that lead to a God-pleasing life have stood the test of time because they reflect the heart of God Himself.” (Louie Giglio)

Big pops walked a life that was pleasing to God. His heart reflected God’s heart. He did justice, loved kindness and walked humbly with His God every single day.

At the front of the Bible, this is what he wrote, “When I die, will I have made a difference? What will I leave behind?”

Oh Big pop, what a BIG difference you made in the lives of everyone that you encountered. You are leaving behind a beautiful legacy of love, strength and faith that we are all so very thankful for. We are honored to have been your grandchildren and we are so thankful for the life you lived.

God’s word is a comfort to us during the best of times and during the worst of times. Big Pop believed that.

I encourage you to start reading your Bible daily. Even if it’s one verse. Open the Word and allow God to speak to you each day. God’s Word is powerful. His Word is alive and active. Hebrews 4:12 says,

“For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”

I hope you can be encouraged today by Big Pop to seek God during the good and bad times. To sit and spend time in His Word daily and allow God’s Word to work in your heart.

In one of the pages Big Pop wrote, “Love God. Love People.” And without a doubt, that’s what Big Pop did.

“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ Matthew 22:36-39

We love you, Big Pop!

God’s Heart is Set on You

What is man, that you make so much of him, and that you set your heart on him, (Job 7:17)

A couple of weeks ago we read through the book of Job. This book has always scared me. I’m always afraid to read it in fear that the awful things that happened to Job would somehow happen to me. Am I the only one who feels this way? It feels weird to actually admit that!

When we read the verse above, i couldn’t seem to get it out of my head.

When I searched the verse on google, I was reminded that David also said this in Psalm 8:3-4 which says,

“When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him?”

When David looked up at the heavens, he felt so insignificant. He wondered why God, a magnificent creator would care about man.

Job felt the same. And it makes me think about this: Job’s life was destroyed. He lost his kids, his wife, his home, his health….everything. He lost everything. But he still asked the question, “what is man that you make so much of him…..?” He was going through the worst season of his life, yet he still felt that God “made so much of man”. Job’s suffering was worthy of the notice of God.

Job’s trials had a purpose. I mean look at us today still learning from Job. In our seasons of trial and suffering, there is always a purpose. And that may not comfort you right now, but let me remind you that God takes notice, God is with you and He strengthens you-let that comfort you.

You are not alone in the battles of life. God is there.

The second part of the verse says “you set your heart on him.”

Our mighty God. The creator of heaven and earth. His heart is set on you. Our God steps down from His throne to be intimate with mankind. I love the way Tara-Leigh Cobble puts it, “God created and is in charge of everything, but His heart isn’t set on the mountains or on Orion or the Pleiades; it’s set on humanity.”

Friend, you may feel insignificant and unworthy. You may be wondering if God even takes notice of you in your suffering and pain. I want to remind you today that the Almighty God, for sure sees you. He is El-Roi, the God who sees us right where we are. In our anguish, loss and anxiety, He takes notice of us. His heart is set on us.

Gosh, that just leaves me in awe of God. Doesn’t it do the same to you? God makes us worthy, He gives us a purpose and an identity. We are His children and He loves us more than we’ll ever be able to comprehend. His love for us reaches to the highest mountain and His faithfulness to the skies. God is faithful. He is faithful when things are going great and He is faithful when they are not.

Trust in Him. Get to know who He is. His heart is set on you and He wants to have a relationship with you. And not just a surfaced relationship, He wants a deep and meaningful relationship.

He sees you, He knows you and He loves you just the way you are.

How can I pray for you today? Comment below or email me at maggieeterno@gmail.com.

I hope you have a great Thursday and I’ll see you back here tomorrow for Friday Favorites!

XO

Love is a Choice

Good morning, friends!

Yesterday was a day, let me tell ya! You know those days when you drop everything, bump into everything, run late to everything, forget to put on deodorant? Yeah, it was one of those, ha!

But we survived (woohoo) and here we are…hello, Tuesday. So glad you are here!

So with it being the week of Valentines… I know, unpopular opinion, but I love Valentines Day. Pink is my favorite color and flowers are my favorite thing to buy for myself. There’s just something about fresh flowers sitting on my kitchen counter that makes me happy.

But like I was saying, with it being the week of LOVE (oooooo), I wanted to share something pretty personal with you.

It’s easy to assume that we all have it all together, right? Social media is a place where, for the most part, is filled with pretty and filtered pictures. I always try to spread joy in my posts and I don’t want to come at you with all of my frustrations every single day because let’s be real, that would not be fun.

But every now and then, I feel like I need to show you that my life isn’t perfect and that I have so much that I need and I’m working on.

Joseph and I have been together since high school. We’ve been friends since middle school. We have grown up together, we were best friends before we were dating and we have a very special relationship. But like all marriages, we have our hard seasons. We disagree and we get on each other’s nerves. We are human.

We’ve had a really busy season of life with work and kids. We’ve also added more projects and have expanded our real estate investment business so we have something going on constantly. We are thankful for the work, but sometimes the busyness can make things a little tense around the home.

When busyness strikes or a new project takes up our time, we can become very short with each other and quick to bicker over the smallest of things, ugh.

I know that we are not alone in these struggles so I wanted to share some of the things that help us get back on track.

First and foremost, we acknowledge and admit that we are being short with each other. Now, this doesn’t always happen right away. Throughout the years, we’ve been able to shorten the time it takes to acknowledge it, but it still takes us a day or so. And sometimes our stubborn selves just don’t want to acknowledge it, ha!

We can all feel when we’re at odds with our partner. We are short with each other, easily annoyed, we probably don’t say much to each other and we lay in the bed as far from each other as possible.

At times, we even find ourselves being quick to snap at our kiddos, because placing our frustration on them just seems easier. Ugh, I hate when I do this.

But you know, just as when we come to Jesus and admit and acknowledge our sins, we have to do the same within our marriage. Acknowledge that there’s something going on that seems to be rocking our world.

Once you’ve acknowledged it, you need to work on yourself. Yes, you, on yourself. Don’t think about all of the things that your spouse should and could be doing. Take a moment and check yourself. What are you doing that’s making things worse? Pray and ask God to reveal that to you I promise, He will. Ask Him to soften your heart towards your spouse and to help you love them as He loves us. Also pray for God to give you wisdom and words to sit and talk things out with your spouse. Because you need to talk it out. Don’t just sweep it under the rug.

Next, talk it out. I am someone who needs to talk things out right then and there. Joseph, not so much. So this has always caused some issues in our marriage. But now that we know that we are different on this, we compromise.

I give him time or I try to anyways ha! And he tries his best, to talk things out.

You may need to give each other space before coming together to talk and that’s ok. Allow each other time to cool down so that you can both be in a good mindset when you discuss whatever it is that’s bothering you.

Sometimes it’s a quick chat and sometimes it takes time.

Communication is key. Your spouse may not know that something they are doing is hurting your feelings or frustrating you.

A good way to approach your spouse is to say,

“Hey babe, yesterday when you snapped at me it made me feel ________.”

Many times they have no idea! Now if you are on the receiving end of this, take a minute to put yourself in their shoes and acknowledge that what you did, hurt them. Maybe you didn’t intend to. Surely you didn’t. Apologize and tell them.

Find ways to help you understand each other and promise each other to do and be better.

Forgive each other and move forward. Don’t keep bringing up the past. Just as God doesn’t bring up our past mistakes, don’t do it to your spouse.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9

Always, always assume the best of your spouse. This is a big one. After God, they are the most important relationship in your life. When the enemy tries to come at you with lies about your spouse, don’t let him. You know your spouse. You know they love you. Don’t fall in that trap.

Show your spouse love. Love is action. Figure out their love language and speak it frequently.

“If you truly want to love someone begin in small ways.” (Gary Chapman)

I know that there are bigger issues in a marriage that may require professional help. Don’t be embarrassed to ask for it. Find a marriage counselor. It’s ok to need help.

We can’t be at peace within ourselves without first, seeking God. We can’t acknowledge and admit and work on ourselves without God’s help. We can’t assume the best without God. But with God, nothing is imposible. Nothing is too far gone.

You may feel frustrated in your marriage right now. I encourage you to seek Jesus. Understand that only He can fill the void in your heart. Our spouses will fail us, but Jesus never will. We can not except our spouse to fill our every need. Only Jesus can do that.

And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19

Be willing to be unhappy while working things out. Our pastor said this on Sunday and it made so much sense. We can be joyful in all circumstances even when we aren’t happy about them.

Ask God to give you joy amidst the hard times. Choose to be ok with the fact that things aren’t great right now, but if you keep fighting and working things out, they will get better. You will experience happiness in your marriage again.

You may think that your marriage is too far gone. Or that there is no hope left. I will say it again, Nothing is too far gone for God. Choose today to fight.

Love is not a feeling. Love is a choice. A choice that we make to love one another no matter what. For better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part.

Choose love, today.

“Life is not over until it is over. Today is the day to turn your life in a positive direction.” (Gary Chapman)

I hope this encouraged you today.

Have a great Tuesday!

XO

Speaking Life Over Our Children

Hi, friends! I hope y’all are having a great week. We are halfway there and the weekend is in sight.

Today, I wanted to share something that is near and dear to my heart. It’s something that I write about often and share every chance I get because it truly changed our lives.

A couple of years ago, a friend of mine shared on social media how they do affirmations with their kids every day. I asked her about it and she shared some of the affirmations that they repeat. She talked about how it had made such a difference in her kids’ lives. I also had another friend that shared on a podcast that they do affirmations with their kids every night.

It’s like God was trying to tell me that I needed to do this.

During that time, I began to notice that my kids were struggling with self-confidence. One of our kiddos was going through some hard things and my heart hurt for them. There’s nothing like watching your child struggle emotionally. It makes you feel so helpless because you are fighting with all the noise around them. Especially as they get older. There’s so much fighting for their attention.

I’ve learned that as a parent we can’t keep troubles away . Just as we struggle and go through hard things, they are going to do the same. And although there may be situations where I feel like I can’t do anything to help them , I’ve learned that I can pray. And that’s one of the most powerful things that I can do.

Because of my friend and the podcast, I learned that not only can I pray for them…I can also speak life over them. And I can teach them to speak it over themselves, too.

My friend sent me some examples of affirmations that she found on the internet. I started with those and then added specific affirmations for each of my children based on their current struggle.

For example, we had one of our kiddos that was dealing with the loss of some friendships and was feeling lonely. This kid also struggled with being happy for others. So we would make this child repeat, “I am a good friend. I am happy for others.”

Another one of our kids struggled with being afraid and anxious so we added to their list, “I am not anxious. I am not afraid. I can do hard things.”

And one of the Eterno kiddos struggles with being slow to anger. So their affirmations included, “I am slow to anger. I think before I speak.”

Here are some that we began to say every single night:

I am strong. I am not afraid. I am not anxious. I am healthy. I can do hard things. I am a good brother/sister. I am a good friend. I loved God. I am a child of God. I am brave. I am smart. I am focused. I am a good student. I love my mom and dad. I am fearfully and wonderfully made. God loves me. I am a conqueror in Christ. I am happy for others. I work hard. I am a good team player. I am slow to speak and slow to anger. I am God’s masterpiece.

And we always, always ended with, “I am an Eterno.”

When we first started, I realized how low their self-confidence was. They felt weird saying these statements to describe themselves. And honestly the first nights were hard because they thought it was silly and they didn’t want to do it.

One of our kids struggled and almost refused to say “I am happy for others.” They had so much bitterness and hate in their heart over this and God used this statement to breakthrough in their life.

I underestimated the power of speaking life over ourselves and our children and the Lord used these affirmations to work powerfully in all of our lives.

When Joseph and I would go out of town, they would call us individually and ask us to please say their affirmations with them. We would say them and they would repeat them.

I won’t forget when Jojo came home one day telling us about being afraid and nervous while he waited to find out if he made the sports team. He told us all he kept saying to himself was, “I am not afraid. I am not anxious.”

When Mary tried out for the cheerleading team, she told us that she kept repeating, “I can do hard things.”

And Mackenzie has told us that when she wants to get mad she repeats, “ I am slow to speak. I am slow to anger.”

It makes my momma heart happy and proud and thankful that my friend shared this with me.

God moved in the lives of my children through the power of our words and I will never stop thanking Him and telling others about it.

Proverbs 18:21 says,

“The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.”

Our words have power. And as parents, Joseph and I realized that our words towards our children were not life-giving. We weren’t building our kids up and that had to change.

We began to change our words even when disciplining our kids.

When they get in trouble we reiterate that that is not who they are. If they lied, we tell them “that is not who you are. You are not a liar. You just made a bad choice. You are a good kid.”

It’s truly amazing to watch your kids grow in confidence before your very eyes.

Here are a couple of examples that I found on Pinterest.

And y’all, don’t just do this with your children. Do it with yourself. Speak life over your life. Quit telling yourself that you are dumb and can never do anything right. 1 Peter 2:9 says,

“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.”

You are His special possession. I love that. Believe it for yourself and speak it over your children.

I hope this helps! If you want to know more, send me an email or message. I’m always happy to share.

I hope y’all have a wonderful Wednesday, friends!

XO

Five in February Challenge

Happy Monday, friends!! Can you believe it’s February 1st? I feel like January flew by.

I am staying in today and getting caught up on laundry. The chore that never ends, ha!

I wanted to invite y’all to do a challenge with me this month. I’m calling it the Five in February Challenge.

I’m thinking of five habits that I want to work on this month.

It’s so easy to become overwhelmed with everything we want to work on or get better at. Choosing five habits helps you narrow it down to what’s most important.

Some of these habits, I’ve mastered before but over the last couple of months, I’ve struggled to get back to doing them.

For instance, I am a bed-maker. I make my bed every single day, but for the last few months I haven’t done it. Also, I have a great laundry system to keep me caught up but I haven’t followed it the last couple of months.

Sometimes we just need a restart. Something to get us back on track and I am choosing this month to get my habits back!

It takes 21 days to form a habit and February has 28 days so that is perfect.

Let’s do this, girls! Let’s get our habits back or create new ones that will help us be more productive with our days.

Here are my Five for February:

1. Make my bed everyday.

2. 1-2 loads of Laundry 6/7 days each week. Fold and put away immediately.

3. Clean up the kitchen every evening.

4. Make my to do lists each night.

5. Eat at home as much as possible.

I’m not going to feel sorry for myself as you shouldn’t either. Life is busy!

But I also know that for me, I can’t be productive in chaos. I need order. And routine helps me stay productive. These five habits will help me get back on track and help me begin and end my days well.

What are you working towards this month? Your habits may be geared towards your health goals or maybe towards your financial goals. Whatever it may be, let’s do it together! Every Monday I will give you an update on how mine are going and I would love to hear from you, too!

Now doing five at once may be overwhelming to you. List all five, but start with one. Do only one for a couple of days and then add a second for a couple of more days and then a third and so on and so on. This will help you baby step it through February. You can do this!

Let’s keep each other accountable while encouraging one another.

We can do this!

Let’s take back our life, babes! One habit at a time!

Here’s an old post I wrote that may help you get started!

Have a fabulous Monday, friends!!

XO

Monday Musings

Hi, friends!!

I hope y’all had an amazing weekend. Ours was busy, but good!

Friday night we went out with friends, Saturday we watched Mackenzie and Jojo in their last basketball games of the season. Yesterday we went to church, did loads of laundry and had everyone clean their rooms to get ready for the week.

Joseph and I left around 4:00 PM to head down to Hilton Head for a couple of days to work on the beach house.

Y’all, I can’t wait to see it. We came in late last night so we didn’t go by. But let me just show you a quick before and after of one of the bathrooms. You ready???

This is one of the smaller bathrooms off the living room.

And here’s a sneak peek!

Ahhh…isn’t it beautiful?!!

We still have to install the pedestal sink, glass door and mirror, but it’s still gorgeous!

I’m going to try and share more on my stories on Instagram so make sure you are following me there for more sneak peeks!

So you all know how I’ve been reading through the Bible this year. I’ve really enjoyed it. We finished Job and came back to Genesis.

God has been showing me so much through stories that’s I’ve read all of my life. But one of the biggest things is that all of these people we read about in the Bible. They are just like you and I.

They are all human. They fail, mess up, do the very thing God tells them not to do. Hello Adam and Eve. Yet God still fulfills His purpose through them. God doesn’t turn His back on them. He’s patient and still sees them as worthy.

And y’all, He feels the same way about us. The same way. He loves us more than we can even imagine. He forgives us before we even mess up. He sees us as worthy.

So many times, we get stuck in our past. We keep looking back when God has already forgiven us. We allow mistakes and failures to weigh us down and keep us from moving forward.

We are so stuck in our past. We walk around with our heads down, ashamed and embarrassed. When God says this in Psalm 103:6-12

The LORD works righteousness and justice for all who are oppressed. He made known his ways to Moses, his acts to the people of Israel. The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. He will not always chide, nor will he keep his anger forever. He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.

Did you read how great his steadfast love is for you??? Did you read how far He removes our transgressions from us?

Yes, there are sins and mistakes that we make where we will experience consequences. But you know what, those experiences, those lessons we learn will only help us. They will propel us forward.

These mistakes will be used by God. Isn’t that amazing? Even our sins, our failures and mistakes will be used by God. Goodness will come from those bad things.

This just fires me up! And if you follow me on Instagram, you can go to my highlights under musings and hear me talk more about this.

Y’all. If you are living in your past. Move on. I’ll say it again. Move. On. Girlfriend.

Ask for forgiveness and receive that forgiveness and don’t look back.

God wants to use your past to not only help you but to help others. Quit walking around with your head down and walk upright in God’s promise to you.

If you’ve never confessed your sin, do it now. Proverbs 28:14 says,

Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy.

And Psalm 32:5 says,

Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the LORD.” And you forgave the guilt of my sin.

And 1 John 1:9,

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

Acknowledge, confess, repent. He is faithful and just.

And once you do that, move on. Walk forward with your head high because you are forgiven. You are a new creation. Nothing you can do will separate you from His love. Walk in that freedom, today.

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!

2 Corinthians 5:17

I love y’all! I hope you have a GREAT day!

xoxo