April 28, 2017

GCH:decaf – Friends are IMPORTANT! and so is FAMILY

We have been having a most AWESOME time getting to know each other these last three months.  We began our Teen Ministry with the hopes that we would be able to reach young women all over the world with the love of God and for them to see how much they are worth to the Father.  In the process, we got to know many new hearts and smiles.

Yesterday Diane shared with us about her friend, Jesus.  How many of you truly think of Jesus as a friend?  Does He have a place in your heart like your best friend does?  When bad stuff happens to you, who do you run to?  Is Jesus first, or do you go to a friend, or a parent?  Sometimes Jesus is the LAST person we go to – and only because we couldn’t figure it out on our own.  That’s not cool.  That is not how Jesus wants us to think of Him.  How long would we have a best friend if we only talked to them when we were bored or in danger?  Not long, I think.  Friends need to be cared for even when things are fun and good.

It is a FACT that bad things will happen in our lives.  It is a FACT that we need other people to walk along side of us for support.  It is a FACT that Jesus wants to be that person that we go to FIRST…even before our friends or our parents.

Through this teen ministry of GCH:Decaf I have met some pretty amazing women, teens and friends.  We have been introducing you to some of the girls that responded to our interview questions.  Today, I would like to introduce you to a pair of sisters who I met while doing the first study and preparing for things to come.  It is truly amazing how God works miracles in our hearts and lives when bad things happen to us.  Some things girls go through are just too awful to survive, let alone use that terrible thing as a ministry opportunity.

These sisters reminded me of the scripture in Psalms 34:18, “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”   Through our online study group I met Trinicia and Carlia.  They answered my interview questions very honestly, just like the other girls did.  I love these girls so very much that I want to get to know them in person.  I want to watch their ministry unfold as they walk out the path God has laid before them.  The events in older sister’s life affected the life of the younger sister.  That is the way we were designed to be.  We bear each other’s burdens and joys.  I love that they are sisters and support each other.  I love that they have a heart for God.  Here is their story:

CarliaI first want to introduce you to Carlia.  She is 13 years old and lives in Memphis, Tennessee.  She likes the group One Direction (much like many of our girls here at :decaf) and this girls LOVES LeCrae.  I have to say that I am loving me some LeCrae myself these days.  I got a new CD for Christmas.  J  Her favorite movie is “Home is Where the Heart Is” and her favorite TV show is House of Payne.  By these choices alone you can tell Carlia values “home”.

 Carlia loves to dress eccentrically and to do that she needs to SHOP with her friends. When asked about food, she responded that all things “Rafferty’s” was her fave.  I have eaten at a Rafferty’s and I would have to agree that they have good food.

 Now here is the answer to the question:  What is one thing that changed your life?

“The day my oldest sister told my Mom that my dad had been touching her in a bad way.  It was hard because that was my dad and he was a part of me, but so was my sister and she was a girl, so I could feel what she was saying and it was hard for me to deal with.  It still is sometimes.  It did bring us closer as a family and it has made all of us stronger and more protective of each other.  I love her!”

Carlia loves her big sister, Trinicia.  God truly came close to these brokenhearted sisters, daughters and friends.  He has begun to heal the wounds that have crushed their spirits and out of these precious hearts, a ministry has been born.

 Trinicia

Let me introduce you to 19 year old, Miss Trinicia.  She goes to college in Nashville, Tennessee.  Her favorite singer is Beyonce and her favorite Christian artist is also LeCrae.  Oh, yeah, and he is CUTE, too.  Trinicia said that Disney’s Pete’s Dragon is her all-time favorite movie and she likes to watch Criminal Minds and Cold Case on TV.  Don’t mess with her, she’s analytical.  LOL  Trinicia likes to be casually dressy.   She sounds pretty classy to me.  Her favorite thing to do with friends is go out to eat and her favorite is Chinese food.

 So here’s the kicker for me; when Trinicia was asked about one thing that changed her life she responded:  “Meeting my best friend Devin at a time when I had to disclose to my mom that my stepdad… had been molesting me and raped me.  God has used that horrible time in my life to help other girls and women get through such a horrific moment in their life.  God has really given me a ministry!  He has used something bad and is using it for His good!”

Trinicia could have said that the action was the thing that changed her life, but what really changed her was the friendship of Devin who stood by her when she needed support to talk to her mom.  Do bad things happen to good people?  Absolutely.  Is it fair?  I don’t think so, but life isn’t fair.  The thing that matters is how Trinicia responded to the bad thing that happened in her life.  She gave it over to God to use as He saw fit and now Trinicia has a ministry helping other girls and women recover from these crushing blows of life.

Did you notice that not only did the bad stuff affect Trinicia, it affected Carlia?  Did you notice that Carlia said that their family is “closer” now than before they found out about the “bad stuff”?  How can that be?  I can understand how these sisters were reluctant to join us in our study “A Daughter’s Worth”, but getting to know them I see that they know the Father loves them and they return that love.  They have turned their pain into ministry to others who are hurting.  I truly love these young ladies.

In Matthew 22:37 it says, “Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’”  That verse sums up what we were trying to learn in our last Bible study.  We want to seek God with everything in us, make HIM a part of us that we cannot live without.  We would be lost without our HEART, our SOUL or our MIND.  Make it a point to get to know Jesus this year like Trinicia and Carlia have.  Make 2013 the year you become a true FOLLOWER of Jesus!

I love all my girls,

Mama T

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 If you are interested in sending a private message to Teresa in regards to this blog, please email her at: Teresa@girlfriendscoffeehour.com

Resolution for Women- The Encourager

1 John 3:18

“We must not love with word or speech, but with truth and action.”

_____________________________________

The Intentional Encourager

 In our chapter, Priscilla was amazed that a very young 22-year-old Solomon – when given the opportunity to gain health, wealth, prosperity, and prestige – asked God simply for WISDOM to lead the people he was made king over.  This amazed me as well.  I have 4 children ranging in age from 17-26 and if given the opportunity to gain health, wealth, and prosperity OR wisdom – my crowd would certainly choose health, wealth, and prosperity. What child this age today wouldn’t?  Once again, like Priscilla, my initial thoughts were the same – King David certainly must have raised his child the right way ~ a way different from what I raised my own.  Do you see the similarities of this situation with times today?  They really aren’t any different.  We all have character defects or deficiencies, we all make errors in judgement and King David did as well.  Priscilla says, ‘He made some colossal mistakes in both his personal life and his parenting’; as we all have done and continue to do.

  ‘My son Solomon – God has chosen him alone – is young and inexperienced. The task is great, because this palatial structure is not for man but for the Lord God.’            Chronicles 29:1-2

Solomon has been instructed to build God’s temple – did you get that?  God’s temple!  That is HUGE! …..and although he recognizes that his son is “young and inexperienced”, he also realizes that he is the chosen one.  That God chose Solomon to be king, to lead his people, to get His temple built.  Now it is his job to support, encourage, and most of all BELIEVE and have faith in his son to accomplish this undertaking. David does just that.

Like most parents, I have high expectations for my son and daughters.  I want them to have wisdom, health, wealth, prestige and all the blessings God promises in His word.  Unfortunately there have been many choices made by my children that were not in their best interest, that go against God’s instruction – that have caused me to lose faith in them, that have caused me to stop believing in them in many areas.  Shame on me.   I certainly was not perfect growing up and only in the last 4-5 years have built a relationship with Jesus Christ that has given me the desire and conviction to make my life’s decisions based on my Heavenly Father’s desires, the desires found in His word.  God didn’t give up on me.  God believed in me.  However, it remains very hard difficult to give my children that same gift (virtually impossible! – although we know with God all things are possible!)

As God’s child,  He was with me every step of the way growing up.  I know this because I should have been a ‘street kid’.  As a teenager my brother and I were being raised by my father.  He left our house to move in with his girlfriend and we had free reign.  Our dad wasn’t there giving us parental guidance, he wasn’t cooking for us or taking care of us.  I remember living in that mobile home (our home), just me and my brother (who was only 18 months younger than me) wanting to take care of him. There was no desire to ‘party’ as many teenagers do today. There was no desire to stay out until all hours or to do drugs or drink. God delivered us from what could have been a disastrous young adulthood.  He gave us wisdom.

The lesson being taught to us today is that we MUST be INTENTIONAL (and we have heard this word throughout many chapters n our study) with our children.  We must INTENTIONALLY encourage them, we must INTENTIONALLY provide them support (and I’m not talking about financial support or treasures), we must INTENTIONALLY believe in them.  We have to trust that our Heavenly Father has them – after all, they are His children.  We are simply here to give them earthly guidance and support until such day that they are reunited with their Father in heaven.  They are on loan to us.  We must never give up providing them with the spiritual food they need to get to know their daddy.  We must believe that they are going to do GREAT things in the course of their lives, that they too will build a relationship with God that will allow them to give their children what David did to Solomon.  This is a hard task ladies – a tough, tough task.  It is for me anyway – maybe it’s easier for you guys.  Perhaps you are in a different place in your life than I am in mine.  However, the lesson remains the same.  BE INTENTIONAL with your children.  As we have read in the past chapters, our jobs as parents don’t end when our children become adults.  Even with our grown children we must be INTENTIONAL in our actions towards them and continue to ‘train them up’ in the ways of the Lord. We must believe in them, encourage them, and support them – Intentionally. What incredible life gifts for them!

Let’s Pray:

Father, work in our lives.   Work in my heart Lord and in the heart of every reader here.  Allow us to become convicted and determined to be INTENTIONAL with our children AND the children of this world – those in our churches, in our communities, in  other cities and countries we visit.  Especially those father that do not have a parental figure in their lives.   You know every situation Father – for every parent and every child.  Provide us with the wisdom, guidance, and gentle nudges OR large pushes necessary to give our children the gift of belief in them, of encouragement, and the desire to continue spiritually feeding them regardless of where they are today in their personal lives.  May we be more like David in our daily walk with our children.

Your Assignment:

List some of the immature actions and temperaments in your children that may discourage you.  Keep this list in a place where you can always be reminded to pray regarding them, and consider who you can enlist to encourage your child in these areas (along side of you).  Carefully consider how you can make the overarching tone of your relationship with your child one of encouragement.  Please comment and let us know how we can pray for you in your walk, attempting to be more like David with Solomon.  or God with us.

[My note:  It is very difficult for me personally, psychologically, to see the roses over the thorns many times with my children.  This prohibits me from giving them the encouragement that I need to.  Especially with my son, who is covered in thorns.  This lesson has challenged me.  I will be praying for each of you in your own lives and request you cover my family in yours. Thank you for this.]__________________

Don’t forget, on October 1st, we will begin our brand new Online Bible Study, right here, entitled “Winning Him Without Words” by Lynn Donovan and Dineen Miller.  If you are in an unequally spiritual marriage, you won’t want to miss this study!!  It is AMAZING! (as a personal note, I have read this book – I have communicated with these authors over the past year and they are amazing.  Their personal stories changed my life.  Their words confirmed what my own pastor said when he counseled me in my own marriage.  I pray that you will join us for this study as well!)

To sign up for this study, please send an email to:  Womens@GirlfriendsCoffeeHour.com and we will send you all the details you need to get started!

Don’t forget to stop by Craig’s blog to see what the guys are up to with The Resolution for Men.

www.adversusmundi.wordpress.com

Be sure to jump on over to our Facebook Group for the daily activity!! If you do not yet belong to this group, and would like to, send us an email at GirlfriendsCoffeeHour@gmail.com with FB GROUP in the subject line, and we’ll be glad to add you!

 With the greatest love ever and many hugs,

<3 Kelley

Resolution for Women- The Soul Shaper

1 John 3:18

“We must not love with word or speech, but with truth and action.”

___________________________

In today’s lesson, Priscilla talks about 3 roles a mother must take on if they are going to love their children well….

The Soul Shaper

The Intentional Encourager

The Discipline Dealer

Mama and dear friend…. I need you to understand right now that YOU are a soul shaper for your children.

It is so vitally important that we pray for our children. These prayers need to start forming in our spirit before we even have them and they must continue to grace our hearts and lips even after they leave our nest and have their own homes and children.

A Soul shaper must….

  • beware that her prayers for her child are significant
  • understand that once her child has received salvation, she is God’s primary tool to work alongside the Holy Spirit to see that the transforming process occurs effectively in her child’s soul.
  • know that she cannot accomplish this without involving her church and relatives to assist in the effort.
  • know along with her spouse that the main responsibility of this soul shaping is theirs.
  • not allow anyone else to take her or her spouse’s place as the primary influencers in the child’s life
  • help the child to become sensitive to God’s conviction
  • teach the child how to recognize God’s way of directing them through their conscience
  • continue to walk this out along with the Holy Spirit as the child grows and matures.
  • continue to seek the Lord for guidance for how she can be used to guide her children in their adult lives.

Dear friends, I hope with all my heart that you see what an intentionally BOLD role you play as your child’s soul shaper! You cannot be lazy about it or turn a blind eye. You must intentionally, every single day make this deliberate choice to invite the Holy Spirit to help you in your actions and speech in order to mold your child’s soul. What an honor and privilege!!!

Please…. if you haven’t already been walking out this bold task, start today. Don’t look back but look straight ahead at what the Lord is asking of you on behalf of His children that He has entrusted you with on this earth. HE deserves no less and neither do they. You will not be perfect… I hope you know that and are okay with that. Being human, we are flawed…. but what is so important is that you believe with your whole heart that your parenting is KINGDOM BUSINESS!!!!

You also must come at this call from a proactive stance and not one of defense. Don’t wait until your child is in trouble to cover them in scripture… we must each live each day being creative and consistent in how we clothe our children in the Word of God. What does this look like?

  • diligently and deliberately read the Bible to your kids
  • post scripture throughout the house
  • play worship music
  • be in fellowship with other believers
  • write scripture on the napkin in their lunch for school
  • send them scriptures in txt messages and emails
  • do devotional together as a family
  • ___________________________. (you fill in the blank)

we all know that if WE as women and mothers love the Lord with all our heart, soul, mind and strength, that we can only then be able to fill this role to its potential and be our best for our children. If you are not regularly in the Word and being fed spiritually…. make it happen today. If you’re not going to church regularly, start this weekend. Your children, wether unborn, non-biological or adult NEED you to! As Priscilla so eloquently puts it….

“A transformed child start with a transformed mom”

________________________

Let’s Pray:

Lord, we ask that you give us bold revelation into this area of our lives today. We don’t want to be the same, Father…. we yearn to be THIS deliberate for our children, who are your’s first. Renew our hearts, minds and spirits to be able to give each of them all we have everyday to work alongside the Holy Spirit in shaping their souls. Thank you for this provision, Lord, and we thank you in advance for all you will do. Amen <3

Your Assignment:

Please leave a comment below telling us how you can creatively live your Christian life openly before your children… in REAL LIFE…. be realistic here, friends and tell us what you are already doing or what you are going to do. If you don;t have children of your own, tell us how you can do this with other children in your life. If your kids are grown, how can you begin to think outside the box to do this? If your children are very young, how can you creatively do this now?

___________________

Don’t forget, on October 1st, we will begin our brand new Online Bible Study, right here, entitled “Winning Him Without Words” by Lynn Donovan and Dineen Miller.  If you are in an unequally spiritual marriage, you won’t want to miss this study!!  It is AMAZING!

To sign up for this study, please send an email to:  Womens@GirlfriendsCoffeeHour.com and we will send you all the details you need to get started!

Don’t forget to stop by Craig’s blog to see what the guys are up to with The Resolution for Men.

www.adversusmundi.wordpress.com

Be sure to jump on over to our Facebook Group for the daily activity!! If you do not yet belong to this group, and would like to, send us an email at GirlfriendsCoffeeHour@gmail.com with FB GROUP in the subject line, and we’ll be glad to add you!

 Be a Blessing today and everyday,

Megan 🙂