Thursday, October 24, 2013


Steve and I are in it with this parenting stuff. I mean we're becoming legit parents, with school and sports and talking little humans asking us questions! Lord, help us! I don't know how other parents feel, but half the time I feel like I'm winging it! On occasion I'll do something that will make me look like maybe I read a parenting book some time ago, but then I'll have something come up that throws me off.

We recently took Henry on his first school field trip to the pumpkin patch. Excited about the milestone, Steve and I both tagged along. During the field trip a little blond boy sort of pushed him, nothing to call Dr. Phil about, but enough to make my mommy blood boil. I wondered which little boy my son was, is he the one with no friends, the one that kids pushed aside? Sure, none of them were really doing secret handshakes or walking in unison, telling inside jokes, but just the idea of my son getting pushed around made me panic a little. I looked at my husband and said to him "We've got to switch schools, did you see that kid push him?" Steve assured me that pushing happens in all schools, and this is when I discover that I have loosely based my parenting strategies on the 80s hit...The Karate Kid. I explain to him, "My son is Ralph Macchio, and these other kids are those mean karate boys, the blond one. We know what happens, those boys were always beating up on him!" Thankfully my husband thinks more clearly than I do and gently tells me, "Yes baby, but he beat them in the end." I guess we can stick it out at this school, but my son definitely will be learning Karate!

I am probably certifiable when it comes to parenting, and I'm not referring to a parenting certificate. Too often have the words, "I'm sure I'm messing up my kids" been uttered out of my mouth, sometimes kidding and sometimes not. I have often prayed, "Lord, my kids are yours, I have no idea what I'm doing and I know you can do a much better job than I can" most of this is true, but this weekend I heard something at the convention that beat anything any parenting book could teach me. I trust God so much for everything in my life, I trust him with our finances, I trust him with my marriage, my problems, the big things and the little things. With all this trust, why can't I trust him that he picked the perfect mother for my kids? He picked this nutty, karate kid metaphor throwing, quick to react, mom. There is something in me he saw and needed to carry out his plans for my children and although I may not always understand why I have to trust that he knew what he was doing. I am grateful for a God who would choose me, who would give me a chance. Grateful for a God who maybe chuckles a little when he hears my 'Karate Kid' metaphors and still yet knows I can do the job he's given me.

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths"
-Proverbs 3:5-6

Tuesday, October 22, 2013


I have heard that if you go to MOMcon, there is a possibility you can come back changed. I know, the name sounds a little...silly...begs the question, did we learn how to change diapers, braid hair, sing lullabies?  No, No and No. I'm still trying to wrap my head around the amazing speakers and workshops, the lessons and scriptures that filled me this weekend, broke me, built me up, inspired me. First I'll share some pictures for those of you who come for those. I was a little too wrapped up to get many during the conference, but had fun snapping a few while out for coffee with my sister during a break.  
Inside the conference I was inspired. I could not wait to come home and write. One speaker after another I saw how God used women, wives, moms for mighty...MIGHTY purposes! On the last day I had so much stirring inside me and no clue where to start. I can tell you, if God has mighty plans for me, then he has his work cut out for him. Are you ever afraid to take that first step? I began to question what I would need to do, what would need to change, where would I start. As God stirred my heart, questions flooded inside my head, "Who do you want me to become Lord?" "What do you want me to do?" "What move do I make?" "What's next?"
I sat as the worship service began. I found myself alone in a full auditorium, I pushed out the thoughts, the noise that polluted my head and for a moment began to focus on the awesome God I served. I lifted my hands and I worshipped a God who uses the unprepared, the mediocre, the scared! Every thought, every fear I pushed out for that moment and focused, pressed in and praised God. In that moment I heard God whisper to me..."I want you just like this!" Let me tell you...I...was...broken. He did not want me to worry about what came next, he did not want me to think about who I needed to become, he wanted I am...right now in this moment and pressed in to only him.
"I want you just like this"...He is looking for the most simple form of me. This is the Serena he will use, the one that although inspired and excited by the lives and words of others comes to him first...comes to him humbly...comes to him and instead of asking him a million questions, listens. Listens to his whispers, his directions, his plans for me.
"Your worship must engage your spirit in the pursuit of truth. That’s the kind of people the Father is out looking for: those who are simply and honestly themselves before him in their worship. God is sheer being itself—Spirit. Those who worship him must do it out of their very being, their spirits, their true selves, in adoration.” - John 4:23-24 (MSG)
"I gave them this command: Obey me, and I will be your God and you will be my people. Walk in obedience to all I command you, that it may go well with you. But they did not listen or pay attention; instead, they followed the stubborn inclinations of their evil hearts. They went backward and not forward." -Jeremiah 7:23-24 (NIV)
"With what shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before the High God? Shall I come before Him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams,
Ten thousand rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He has shown you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?" -Micah 6:6-8 (NKJV)
Friends, he is using us, family. I pray that we hear his voice, we listen to his whispers, we come to him how we are, messed up, unpolished, overwhelmed, scared but eager to obey and let him show us what's next!  

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