February 22, 2018

GCH:POTs (Parents of Teens)- Love God by Belonging to Christ

Hello POTs!

It has been 3 days now since I posted about God having 3 purposes for your teen’s life… Do you remember what they are?

  1. To love God by belonging to Christ
  2. To love God by loving others
  3. To glorify God by fulfilling your “This I must do” dream

Today, we will dive into the first purpose mentioned: “Loving God by belonging to Christ.” I pray that you were able to go to the Lord in prayer about this very purpose over your own life. . Really, if you are able to articulate about how God has impacted your life in this way, it will be much easier to relate it to your teen! If you found it challenging to get started digging deeper about this on your own, that’s okay…. You can work through it with me today and I pray this lesson will help encourage some awesome conversation between you and your teen!

Matthew 22:37-38

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.

As a Christ follower, it is our purpose to love God by choosing (yes, intentionally making a choice…) to be transformed into a new person in the image of Christ. How do we go about doing this in real life? Well, it begins by reading God’s Word and allowing the Holy Spirit to teach to you fully surrender to Jesus as your Lord and Savior.

It is critical that you have help from people around you here on earth to walk this out. I’m specifically talking about your church family (including prayer partners, accountability partners, and mentors). In belonging to Christ, you have chosen to commit to a life of holiness, integrity, right motives, peace, and worshipping your Creator…… as well as helping others to do the same.

Romans 12:2

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by

 the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test

and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

As adults…. This is HARD to do, right? Can you imagine how much harder it is for teens? Typically, their biggest fear is not fitting in with their peers. I know this has been tough for many of my kids, especially in middle school through 9th grade. If we can pinpoint and put names to our struggles with this very idea, then it will be much easier to relate to our teens about it. Do you struggle with this in your workplace? Maybe with friends you still have from before you were a believer? Maybe it’s your extended family that makes it challenging for you to live not of this world?

I urge you to spend some time with the Lord on this in prayer before you start the conversation with your teen. Let Him guide you in opening up with them about what this looks like in your life.

John 14:6

Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life.

No one comes to the Father except through me.

Do you believe this? In your heart and soul, do you believe this? If so, how does this impact YOUR life? Explore that a bit before talking to your teen about it. I truly wish I could be a fly on the wall and hear every conversation each of you have with your teens about this divine purpose God has for their life! Read this scripture with your teen and help them unpack it. You know, they might just teach you a thing or two about your walk with God!

I would love to hear about how this is going in your home. Please share with me in a comment on this blog or by email how it is going working through this with your teen. After all, we are all in this together!

I will be back tomorrow to explore the second purpose God has for your teen:

To Love God by Loving Others!

 

Blessings to you and yours,

Megan

megan@girlfriendscoffeehour.com

https://www.facebook.com/megan.smidt

Sign up for one of our Online Bible Study or Fellowship Groups for Women and Teen Girls here:

http://girlfriendscoffeehour.com/sign-up-for-girlfriends-coffee-hour-online-bible-studies/

GCH:POTs (Parents of Teens) God’s Purposes For Your Teenager

For the Lord is the one who shaped the mountains,

stirs up the winds, and reveals his thoughts to mankind.

He turns the light of dawn into darkness

and treads on the heights of the earth.

The Lord God of Heaven’s Armies is his name!

Amos 4:13

 

I hope you enjoyed getting to know your kids better last week. What types of questions did you ask them? How did they respond? I would love to hear all about it!

This week, we are going to focus on preparing you and your teen for change. I know, I know…. Not many people are fans of things changing, but change is imperative if you want to have a different outcome in any situation. Parenting and communication with your teenager is no different. Having five teens under my roof at the same time, I learned early on that I needed to be willing to try different approaches with each one constantly in order to bring out the best in them and our relationship.

We all want to know our life’s purpose…. Don’t we? Well, our teenagers are no different. In fact, what I have seen with my own kids is that every way they turn, they are even EXPECTED to know their life purpose at younger and younger ages. I’m 37 and I just figured it out two years ago!

I have always admired my oldest son, James, because he knew in kindergarten that he wanted to be a chef and has been unwavering in that goal. Straight out of high school, he went into culinary school and is now a chef! But, what I am finding, is that his focus with his God-given gifts is uncommon and most of my other kids have had thoughts swimming around in their heads like….

  • Why was I born?
  • Will my dream ever come true?
  • What major should I have in college?
  • Should I go to college?
  • Where do I fit in this world?
  • What on earth am I here for?

Our society prompts us, as parents, to pray for God to bring someone or some situation into our kids’ lives to encourage their kids to live more purpose-filled and significant lives beyond video games and texting. Parents want their kids to know Jesus as their Lord and Savior and to live with His peace and joy in their hearts. They want their kids to be self-sufficient and to live rewarding lives in and out of the home.

 

I have news for you. In all of my coaching, parenting,  and mentoring the one way I have found to help make all these pieces fit into place for your teenager is to help them to discover how they specifically have been wired by God with unique, God-given Gifts to make an impact on this world. I am so happy that we are on this journey together…. Now let’s get started!

God has three purposes for your teen’s life:

  1. To love God by belonging to Christ
  2. To love God by loving others
  3. To glorify God by fulfilling your “This I must do” dream

This week, we will be diving into these three purposes to help lay the groundwork with our teenagers. These three purposes are meant to work simultaneously in order  to unleash God’s best in their life. Are you ready to get started?

What I need you to do the next few days is spend some time thinking and praying on how these three purposes fit into YOUR life. Seek the Lord on these three purposes and see what He shows you. If you can talk about how God has impacted your life in these ways, it will be much easier to relate it to your teen!

Let’s pray:

Dear Lord, I thank you for every parent and adult who is reading this blog who has the desire to help bring out the very best in their teen! Thank you for putting this desire in their hearts and I pray that You will continue to strengthen them and give them Your boldness to dare to be different! Help them think outside the box in relating and communicating with their teen to help being out Your gifts in them. Thank You for this provision, Father. In Your Son’s name I pray, amen <3

Blessings to you and yours,

Megan :)

megan@girlfriendscoffeehour.com

https://www.facebook.com/megan.smidt

Sign up for one of our Online Bible Study or Fellowship Groups for Women and Teen Girls here:

http://girlfriendscoffeehour.com/sign-up-for-girlfriends-coffee-hour-online-bible-studies/

GCH: POTs (Parents of Teens) Starting the Conversation

The most important side of your kids….

The inside!

I don’t know about your kids, but mine are experts at talking about nothing… a lot!!! And for years, I was pretty good at keeping things surface with them…. partly because I was afraid to dig deeper, if you know what I mean. God really convicted me in this area and I’m so glad he did!

I have always been really good about knowing exactly what my kids want as gifts and what their favorite foods are…. But what about the really important stuff? Do you know….

  • How their small group is going at church?
  • If they have any Christian friends at school or in your neighborhood?
  • What their hopes and dreams are?
  • What they like most about themselves?
  • What breaks their heart?
  • What their Love Language is?
  • Their biggest fears?
  • If they see you and your spouse as Spiritual Leaders in your home?
  • Who their favorite teachers are?
  • The latest miracle God performed in their life?
  • Who is their best friend?
  • Their biggest challenges at school (not only academically)?
  • How you can pray for them?
  • Fill in the blank_____________________________?

 

My kids had/ have the extra challenge of being non-biological to me and had a whole other set of insecurities and hurts that many kids aren’t challenged with… but that was also a subject that I had to tread light with talking to them about and getting them to open up about because I wanted to protect my heart too, right? Well, once I let that go and let them see they were safe to open up with me, healing was able to begin. Did some of what they told me hurt? YES!!!!! But it really wasn’t about me. It is always so much more important that your kids feel safe talking to you about what is on their mind and heart than how YOU might feel about what they say!

I would like to challenge you for the next few days to engage in meaningful conversation with your kids about God’s unique plan for their lives, based on how God has uniquely created them to be. If you talk about nothing else “deep”,  it’s okay… this is a safe way to start and will get the dialog flowing! Remember…. It’s a DIAlog you’re after… not a MONOlog! 🙂  Think about it…. other than the topic of salvation, I cannot think of any other more important conversation we can have with our teens than the one about personal surrender to God’s will for their life! There is no hat we wear as “parent” that is more important than this… and THAT is why we are starting here with this blog!

In the days and weeks to come, we are going on an awesome, life-journey together with our teens as we grow closer and deeper in our relationship with them. Please don’t wait to do this! Begin to make a difference NOW and join us as we make this intentional stand to give our teens all we’ve got!

Dear Lord, thank you for stirring a hunger in each parent or youth leader reading this blog post to want to be more intentional about how they are relating to their teen! May You be glorified through each and every single conversation. As iron sharpens iron, give us each a boldness to share with each other our successes and opportunities we come across this week. Protect each household and give them Your mighty boldness with their kids! In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen <3

Please leave me a comment on today’s blog about how you plan on starting this conversation with your kids! We are all in this together… so let’s work together to help each other along!

Blessings to you and yours,

Megan :)

megan@girlfriendscoffeehour.com

https://www.facebook.com/megan.smidt

Sign up for one of our Online Bible Study or Fellowship Groups for Women and Teen Girls here:

http://girlfriendscoffeehour.com/sign-up-for-girlfriends-coffee-hour-online-bible-studies/

GCH: POTs….. Parents of Teens (an introduction)

This blog is specifically for parents of teens…

but will be a great resource for any parent.

I am Megan Smidt and I am  a co-founder of this ministry, Girlfriends Coffee Hour, and I also lead our ministry for teen girls called GCH:decaf.

I am an unlikely parent. I have not given birth to any children, but I have 5 that legally and lovingly call me “mom.” I always thought God wanted to use me for His purposes in working with kids, but he has shown me very clearly over the past few years that He needs me with their leaders and parents, specifically, to further His Kingdom.

My Kids

So, I have 5 kids ages 14-21 and I volunteer every week with the high school students at my local church. I have been a parent of teenagers for 8 years already and I have another 6 years to go, God willing. I love them… and I love the amazing journey that each teenaged relationship I have brings my way. I am honored to be able to walk along side  you in this season and I pray that we learn a lot from each other.

As you can imagine, I also know the added stresses of raising teens in a blended family situation. I get that… even though I am the only one who blended into our family. My teens are living through and surviving abandonment, neglect, anger, disappointment, failure, psychological sickness and abuse, and other pain that comes from being a child of divorce and being raised primarily by someone other than their biological parent.

I am a Certified Christian Life Coach who specializes in relationships…. And I really love people…. especially encouraging people in their walk with the Lord.

God has shown me it is important that, as a ministry, we not just be there for teen girls, but that we help bring healing to families through also offering support to their parents. My prayer is that GCH will be an instrument to help families become more fully devoted followers for God and, in turn, thrive in this season. I thank you for being on this journey with me.

I do not believe that kids need to wait until they are older to do something big for God…. They can do it NOW. Understanding their own unique and divine mission is a key step in them accomplishing big things for God. Being a parent myself, I know how important it is as a parent to be there for your children to give them much-needed motivation and encouragement to help a teen take a step towards God, especially being in a fallen world that is trying to get your teen to step away from Him every day.

I will be starting out this blog by writing a few times a week here about how you can help your teen discover God’s mission for their unique life purpose. I pray this blog will change your relationship with your teenager and help you prepare them for a meaningful life that God has so divinely created them for. I plan on helping you have conversations with your teens about such things as….

  • Knowing strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats
  • Praying for courage, perseverance, and miracles
  • Understanding spiritual gifts, best qualities and finest values
  • Rethinking motives, relationships and use of time
  • Writing a Lifetime Dream Statement
  • Surrendering all to Jesus

 We are partners… in this together. We all know it takes a village to raise a child and I pray that you will find this to be a helpful place as you navigate these waters of teenagedom.

Lord, we come to you today praying for your leading. Help me come up with good questions to ask my kids and help me every day to truly hear my kids’ hearts. I am thankful that You have helped me find my life’s purpose in You as an adult and I pray you will use me as a willing vessel to speak into the lives of every family represented here. We thank you in advance for how relationships will be restored through this journey and for all of the incredible discoveries we will make together. Lord, we thank you for this provision! Amen.

Blessings to you and yours,

Megan 🙂

megan@girlfriendscoffeehour.com

https://www.facebook.com/megan.smidt

Sign up for one of our Online Bible Study or Fellowship Groups for Women and Teen Girls here:

http://girlfriendscoffeehour.com/sign-up-for-girlfriends-coffee-hour-online-bible-studies/

Saturday’s with Shandy Showers

6 Weeks to Make Your Home Shine for the Holidays!
Week One by Shandy Showers
 
Forty-seven. Seventy-nine. Eighty-six. Do those numbers mean anything to you? I’ll give you a hint… Thanksgiving. Christmas Eve. New Year’s Eve. Can you believe it?  Have you done anything yet to prepare for the most wonderful time of the year?
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How many of us have had holiday celebrations over the years that have been marred by anxiety because our house wasn’t as clean as we would have liked it to be, or because we waited until the last minute to do everything and exhausted ourselves in the process? I will be the first to raise my hand and say, “ME!” But not this year. Not for me, and not for you if you follow along with us!
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Welcome to “6 Weeks to Make Your Home Shine for the Holidays!” Whether you are a domestic diva or don’t know a duster from a dishcloth, this is for you! Every Saturday for the next six weeks, we will meet right here on the blog to learn how to prepare our homes for the upcoming holidays. (And when we’re through, don’t go anywhere, because we will have a new series on decorating for Christmas and making handmade gifts!) You will check here for your weekly assignments, and are welcome to leave comments and/or ask questions. Maybe you’re not sure how to do something or are wondering if there‘s a better way to do it… just ask 🙂 Then we will head on over to our secret Facebook group, where we can post before & after pictures and have some fun with what we’re accomplishing!
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In my experience, any successful cleaning spree starts with clutter control! So to kick off the first week, we are kicking out some of that clutter! I just moved to a new state this past weekend, and did some major purging the last week of packing. We took nearly 20 bags to Goodwill, made 4 trips to the city dump, put several items out for bulky waste pick up, and gave our neighbor several pieces of furniture and knick-knacks. Even after all that, I bet I can come up with more to banish from my home, so I’m going to do this with you.
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Let’s dive in, ladies! First, take a garbage bag and quickly go through every room in your house. Anything that needs to be thrown away, throw away! Last week’s newspaper, that drawer full of old makeup, junk mail, those shoes that should’ve been retired a year ago, the sweater that’s beyond repair, the bag in your teenager‘s room from last night‘s fast food run… fill up that garbage bag! Now you’re going to take a box or a bag and find 25 more things to either give away or throw away… the pile of sweaters you never wear anymore, the jeans that don’t fit or went out of style in the 80’s, the old toaster you have stashed away as a backup, the old books you’re never going to read again. 25 things. It’s really easy, and your house will start to breathe again.
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I’ve done this before, and because I love a good challenge, I found my first 25 items, then found a bunch more! It feels so good! I encourage you to have your kids do this as well. Maybe start small with them and have them put 5 things in the giveaway box. Or maybe 10. Make it a game and see who can fill up their box the fastest! The only rule: don’t overthink anything. If you have to think about it, it doesn’t mean as much to you as maybe you thought it did.
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We want to see how much you’re clearing out and cleaning up and congratulate you on a job well done, so be sure to take before & after pictures every week! You’ll have the opportunity to share them each Saturday in our facebook group! A clean home is a happy home, and your home is going to be very happy for the holidays!
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Let’s pray:
As we prepare our homes for the holidays, let us remember to do everything enthusiastically, as something done for You, Lord. (Col 3:23-24) May our preparations be done decently and in order (1 Cor 14:40) and let them be an act of service to You and our families, so we are able to welcome the holidays with gladness rather than anxiety, keeping You at the forefront of all our celebrations. Thank you, Father, for these women and for this opportunity to support and encourage each other. Bless our efforts, Lord, and help us make wise decisions so we do not become distracted or discouraged. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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Your assignment:
TODAY – Comment below to let us know you’re taking part in this series and let us know the biggest challenge you face in preparing your home for holiday celebrations.
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Today & Mon – Throw Away & Give Away Challenge (see above) Remove those items from your home right away.
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Tues – Gather/Buy/Make Cleaning Supplies, and you’ll need a 3-ring binder (w/ a clear pocket on the front) and a 3-hole punch. You will be using this binder for this series, as well as future series. We’ll have some free printables for you along the way!
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Wed – Front Porch: Shake out welcome mat. Use your outdoor broom to knock down webs, and to sweep the front porch and walk. Wash windows facing the porch, as well as your front door and doorbell. If your siding or trim is dirty, or if you have railing, take a bucket of warm, soapy water, and wash that as well. Clean outside light fixtures. Tidy things up, and put up some fall decorations if you’d like!
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Thurs – Entryway/Foyer: clean out & organize the coat closet. Wipe down closet door. Wipe down walls, trim, and baseboards if dirty or dusty. Wipe down light switch(es). Sweep and mop floor. Clean light fixture.
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Fri – Catch up on anything you haven’t completed, then enjoy your evening! You’ve earned it!
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We’d like to invite you to be part of our online Bible study! Click on the “Sign-Up Here” button at the top of the page to learn more or to register for the Women’s Bible study and be added to our Facebook group!
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If you have not yet accepted Jesus as your Lord & Savior and would like someone to pray with you, email  Robin@GirlfriendsCoffeeHour.com and someone from our Prayer Team will contact you soon.
Blessings,
Shandy

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Shandy lives with her husband, Scott, and daughter, Gabriella, in Kirkland, Illinois. She also has an adult daughter who lives in Wisconsin.

She’s a Titus 2/Proverbs 31 “virtuous woman in progress” and has a passion for homemaking and raising a family. She considers it a huge blessing to be a modern-day archetype of the classic housewife. Though her infertility diagnosis has prevented Shandy and Scott from growing their family, they are not putting God on a shelf, and are believing Him for their miracle baby.

Shandy believes in old-fashioned traditions and family values, and loves the music and movies of the 1940’s… especially the musicals. She’s loves Elvis, contemporary Christian and country music. She enjoys genealogy, knitting, crafting, country road trips, cozy fires, horseback riding, and living history museums. Her favorite season is autumn, and she loves everything about Christmas!

In addition to blogging about homemaking for our women’s ministry, Shandy is the Executive Administrative Assistant to the Founders of Girlfriends Coffee Hour. She has also served as a Sunday School and VBS teacher in her church, and has also been in puppet ministry, choir, and handbell choir throughout the years. She loves to be involved and bloom where God plants her!

She is blown away by what an awesome God we serve, and endeavors to be salt and light in this world so that others may come to know and love Jesus.