The following is a copy/paste of my Facebook post. I think I’ll do this every now and then. “Facebook Funnies” – posts from my own Facebook page that seem to have struck a funny bone.

This one is from yesterday.

Facebook Funny.

I don’t want to embarrass the lovely lady giving me a pedicure. I think she may be new…or perhaps she just thinks I’m a former gymnast. I’m quite sure I shouldn’t be doing a high kick as she scrubs my heels.

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Ponderings Behind the Post.

You see the above post and photo. You chuckle. Of course, that’s one of my goals…to make my FB friends laugh. To me, the author, the mother, I see much more in that photo. I see laughter and fun times. I see the results of God at work in me, changing me, and helping me to enjoy the little things in life and learning to delight in the unique beauty of each child.

Appreciating the heart and unique beauty of each child.

Laura, my daughter, loves to be with people and loves laughter. Being transparent here…sometimes I’d rather organize something while she enjoys life around me. This photo is from a few weeks ago, taken at a time when the youth group gathered lots of items to pack up for Operation Christmas Child boxes. I was busy organizing the supplies on multiple tables for our assembly line. This picture is me pausing a moment, putting aside my own agenda – an important and needed task,  to enter her world…to dress in playful costumes, laugh, make silly poses, and basically capture some straight cray photos with her in the “I-photo booth.”

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I don’t know about you, but I find myself squelching certain kids or certain attributes within my children by unknowingly putting them in a box…MY box, When this happens over and over, we hurt our children. We drive distance between their heart and ours.

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We might, perhaaaappps… not let them wear silver sparkly Toms shoes with a gown to a formal event or purple Converse tennis shoes with a dress on Sunday morning. (Gasp!) Why? Because that’s our box. Wait… And perhaps underneath this decision, if we dig deep, we may see that we are concerned with what people think about us. Image.What I’m learning is that this very thing could wound my child’s heart. Not allowing them to be them. Reigning in too tightly. Not seeing the beauty in how they think and are. I recall the Bible says, “…Man looks at the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart.”

But, hallelujah, as a Believer we have direct access to the Holy Spirit who gives supernatural insight and discernment as we ask. Through our earnest desire to have our hearts connected with our kids, we can seek exposure of our own blind spots – the very things we are doing that “provoke a child to wrath.” Ephesians 6:4 actually says we, the parents, provoke our children to wrath.

  • Colossians 3:21 (NIV) Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged.  
  • Colossians 3:21 (NASB) Fathers, do not exasperate your children, so that they will not lose heart.

The Holy Spirit seeks to do a work in our hearts.  And, He did just that in my life with allowing a different way to adorn her feet (LOL)… and embracing it. Isn’t she beautiful. I delight in the touch of flare that she has. And, quite frankly, I believe I was heading towards “exasperating” my child to “lose heart” had the Lord not changed me.

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Back to the Facebook Funny. The good news is that, despite the leg lift that revealed aging pains in my hip joint, we laughed and carried on, and we ended up with pretty, painted toe nails, and more importantly for me…smooth heels. And, someone walked away with just the perfect touch of “Laura Flare” with her bright orange, glow-in-the-dark nails. They are fabulous!

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I’d say it was a fun day! And, to have the heart of my child… well, in a word… Mama Liiiiike.

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What are some ideas you have for being totally “present” with your children to enter their world?

Rhonda it’sHARDtogettimealonewithONEchild,butMamaLikewhenIdo ellis

8 Comments
  1. Amber

    I have boys who love to play the Wii. A time I was totally present in their world was setting aside some time (usually reserved for hurrying kids to clean up and get ready for bed…and then doing kitchen clean up, etc.) one evening to join them. I don’t care for video games and would rather be doing something else personally, but I spent time playing with them. They thought it was the best. We all laughed together and had a good time!

    • Amber, how sweet that you stopped the world to play a game they love. I bet the smiled and giggled and laughed the whole time. I bet they want to give you a Fun Mom Alert.

  2. Mel

    in response to your inquiry:

    Most teachers LOATHE rainy school days because recess is indoors. It is quite the contrary for me… I thoroughly ENJOY inside recess because I get more accomplished in my classroom & as a result, don’t remain at school as late. Occasionally my students would
    ask if I would join them in Connect 4
    or help them complete a puzzle depicting the 7 wonders of the world.

    Oh, how I love ✔️ing off my agenda & at times would say “not today” or “maybe later”. Later usually never happened.

    Then there were days that I chose people over things/ my agenda. THESE are the times they remember. I know, because they told me.

  3. Mel, wow!! These are indeed great examples. I can see how “parenting” a classroom is so very similar to parenting within our home!! What an amazing teacher you are. Yahooo about your new job at Lincoln! What a blessing you will be in their lives, and I’m sure God has lots of lessons for you to grow that He knew this particular school and group of kids would allow opportunity for. So exciting.

  4. Patty Cunniff

    Rhonda…
    It has been such a long time since we have been in each other’s lives.. You with 4? extra children, me with 1 GRANDCHILD and 6 extra dogs and an empty nest.. But of the several places we have lived in this city, I remember most fondly living across the street from you!! To me YOU were the cray, cray, one!! You were always happy, always smiling and laughing and just plain wonderfully goofy!! You had such an “out of the box” layed back way about you.. which I always admired, and yes, don’t worry, I Do Remember how organized you were!! Which I have forever after tried to emulate!! ( did I spell that right, Teach?)!!
    So to make a long story short(too late) from what I remember, you are the one that passed down ” The Flare”!!! Hugs!!

    • Awww, Patty. Thanks so much for sharing this with me. True story: yesterday I was looking through photo albums to find some pictures for the blog posts. I came across a super cute one of our girls. I’m planning to post it on your FB page. So sweet. One grandchild? Say what? I always enjoyed talking and laughing with you and David. (and remember that time you cleaned my house? It was SPECTACULAR!!!) Miss you!

  5. Misti

    Wonderful post! I am a list person and love to be organized, but with 3 children God has used them to help me not be a perfectionist and not finish my agenda daily. He has chipped away many things in my heart and life through my children. I praise HIM for that! I am glad HE did a work a mighty work in that area. Exciting for me. I too have learned to stop everything and get in the floor and build something with Legos or I built an actual duck one time with Tinker Toys. I am not the engineer Garrison and Gannon are. They build amazing pieces. But I have learned it is being with them. It is companionship. I am spending the time. It is not that I am talented to build it is being with that person in their world. God greatly convicted me one day as many things needed to be accomplished and that still small voice that is quiet and very loud at the same time whispered,”it would be a shame to be home with them for all these years and not really be at home with them!!” I broke and confessed and from that day forward I am more sensitive to being with them not just being a person in the house with a huge list everyday. Changed my life forever on this topic. #lovetheholyspiritandhisleading

    • Misti, what blessed children to have a mom engaged and present in their lives. I love how you said, “it is being with that person in their world.” It’s especially hard for those with the temperament to do,to accomplish, to be organized, to be efficient. I remember my friend saying she could easily just drop everything, leave the dirty dishes, laundry, and go spend the day at the beach with her kids. I wanted to be more like her! She is now a grandmother and doing the same thing with her grandkids. So awesome.

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