SUCCESS! Our Children Stayed The Entire Sunday Service

A modern Western worship team leading a contem...

 

Have you read Touch Topic: Seeing Children as a Blessing, Even in Sunday Service and Touchy Topic: Training Children in Worship?

 

Last Sunday was our third Sunday bringing the boys in service. I was a little nervous we would be “starting over,” since we had missed service the week before due to illness.

 

After Sunday School, I went to get the boys from their classes. Conner ran ahead as I got Elias. When I made it into the sanctuary, Conner was already at our seats waiting on the sill of the frosted windows. I was relieved he remembered and seemed excited! Elias joined him happily!

 

As we had the week before, they were not allowed into their backpacks during praise and worship. They did great! In our arms, in the chairs, in my purse, dancing, clapping, on the bench. At one point I caught Elias dancing in front of me with his hand in the air like someone he was watching! LOVED it! Tried to catch a picture but he moved on too quick.

 

I did have to walk out with Elias twice. Once during praise and worship, and the other during announcements or service… I can’t remember. We walked out and I told him he could not yell out when we were supposed to be sitting quietly. I wanted to make it clear it was not just because we are in a church service because I want this to carry over for weddings, funerals, graduations, and other quiet events we may attend.

 

Once praise and worship ends, James and I usually rush to pass out our attendance notebooks during announcements. James was going to stay with the boys while I did it this week, but Conner wanted to come. I thought, “Well of course!” Serving together in our church is such a blessing, and I desperately want my children to learn to serve in the ministry and not resent it for taking their parents away.

 

So Conner and I went over to get the notebooks. I carried them for him to give to the first person in each row. He was a bit abrupt hitting their arm with it, but almost everyone had a wonderful smile when they turned to see a sweet THREE year old serving in his church!

 

I can just imagine… how different would our church look if everyone was teaching their children, at a young age, to start serving and worshiping together. Ahhhh 🙂

 

CALM DOWN… I am NOT condemning you for not bring your children in service, just a sweet thought of what could be if we all did…

 

After we sat down to listen to announcements, Ne (knee as the boys call her), came to join us for the service. Ne, aka Tina, is like a second mom to both James and I. She loves our kids as her own grand kids! AND, she is conveniently a HUGE supporter of bringing the boys in service. James has to leave us a lot during service, so I sat on one end and Ne set on the opposite side. Elias was in her lap much of the service. He was (mostly) quiet and Conner did well in his own seat, until about 10-15 minutes before service was over. Conner began to beg to go to the nursery.

 

We are soooo close! I am not going to take them to nursery now! We are almost through service! We CAN do this!

 

How about a snack? Good thinking! Too bad I forgot to bring some. Fortunately, I know that the nursery always has snacks for the kids.

 

I told Conner I would get him a snack. He began to loudly get angry and demand to go to the nursery. Well, surely we all know by now, he was certainly NOT going to the nursery now. Then he would know all he had to do was get loud and angry. I whispered in his ear that he was staying in service with or without a snack, and if he would like a snack then he needed to stop throwing a fit. It worked! Whew!

 

Ran to the nursery and brought the snacks in. WOO HOO! They were both happy and sat the remaining time during service, even after finishing their snack.

 

So, to sum up. How did it all go down? Praise and worship – offered nothing to distract them and conveniently a louder time so they don’t have to be completely hush-hush, meet and greet – Conner asks to go see his Wednesday night teacher, so we let them go say hello to people, announcements – began getting the backpacks out and let Conner serve with me, service – backpacks and snacks!

 

We made it through to the very end!!! I was ecstatic! Loving this and feeling so much closer to my kids and God in the process!

 

Did you decide to transition your kids into service after they were in children’s church? If so, share what worked for you? Are you thinking about? What’s holding you back?

 

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Touchy Topic: Seeing Children as a Blessing, Even in Sunday Service

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For a while now, I’ve gone back and forth on bringing my children into church service with me. James and I have discussed it and see pros and cons for both. My husband is the Discipleship and Outreach Pastor at our church, and I’m the business administrator. We are heavily involved in our church and in the service, which makes it easier to use the nursery and children’s church.

Many people encouraged us to take the kids to the children’s church.

“It gives you a break.
You are then free to worship without worrying about your kids.
The kids are presented with the gospel on their level.
Children cannot sit still and stay quiet.”

Obviously, these are all assuming the church has a children’s service offered. Each of these reasons, at one point or another, have been the very reason we have kept our kids in children’s church and we have worshiped without them.

Others have encouraged us to bring them in with us.

“This will teach your children how to worship by watching you.
Children need to learn to sit still and be quiet.
Children are a joy and blessing. They should be with their parents to learn.”

These are the reasons I’ve thought hard about bringing them in the service with us. I’ve also read about children leaving the church when they go off to college and the links between that and children being out of the main service. Also, I am called to teach and train them in the way should go! I AM! Not anyone else. Me!

Now before you yell at me, I don’t think this means we cannot use the help of other people to teach and train our children… sometimes, BUT it is our responsibility to make sure they are taught and trained correctly. Anyways…

I long to see my children as a joy and blessing, always! Can I be honest? Do I always see them as a joy and a blessing? No 😦 But can I be honest again? Looking around at our society and the MANY influences we have around us, it’s not hard to see why this is even more difficult.

Being a mom is hard! It’s not for the faint at heart. But you know what isn’t helping? Facebook sayings like, “I’ve always dreamed of being a stay-at-home mom. Without kids.” And I saw this in a mom’s group!!!!! What?!? We can also see it all over our movies and television shows.

“Ugh! It’s summer. I hate having to be with my kids all summer?!
When are the kids finally going back to school?!?”

Wow… I am getting way off topic :).

Focus!

We have gone back and forth on what is right for our family. OUR family!

Do I think you should take your kids out of nursery and children’s church? Your call, not mine. Do I think the nursery and children’s church are bad for our kids? Absolutely NOT!

I have decided I want to bring my kids in more. We have Sunday School, Sunday Morning Service, occasional home groups with children’s service offered, and a Wednesday night service. They are getting PLENTY of opportunities to fellowship with other children, and to hear God’s Word on their level.

My first Sunday was on June 2, 2013.

The night before, I went to the dollar store and bought them some fun goodies for the service. I knew this would be important, especially in the transition from the nursery to the main service.

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Then I let Conner pack up his and Elias’ backpacks. I wanted to pump him up and get him excited about coming into service with us. He was so excited about his new backpack and could not wait to go into service so he could play with his new stuff.

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Now, overall this is not my goal; for him to just want to play, but I know it will help the process.

So, the first Sunday, I took them out of the nursery after Sunday school. We went into praise and worship and I immediately gave them their backpacks. They stayed 25 minutes during praise and worship with me, by myself!!! My husband was busy doing church business. Conner was on the floor coloring and Elias was in chair and my arms and did well

overall.

I did have a teaching moment too!!! Conner was standing by me at one point, and said, “Mom do like this” and bowed his head. I said, “You know what’s great about praising and worshiping God? You can do it all kinds of ways. Bowing your head, lifting your eyes, lifting your hands, singing etc.” He got so excited and smiled! Great start I’d say!!!

This last Sunday was our second week. My goal was to not give them their backpacks until after praise and worship time. My sweet husband also adjusted his schedule so he could be in there with us more. Not the whole time, but more.

Praise and worship was a mixture of kids in mine or my husband’s arms, standing in the windows swaying, or spinning around next to the chairs. We are a work in progress. I also did my best to explain to Conner that he can dance but this time is for Jesus so that is our focus.

After praise and worship, during announcements, we got the backpacks out. Elias sat in the window with his Bible (see picture above). Conner asked another awesome question! They were announcing a Missions’ Trip our church is taking in the Fall. Conner said, “I don’t know why we do this.” WHAT?! I am not fully sure he knew what he was asking, but I LOVED that he was paying attention enough to ask such an inquisitive question! AND, had he not been in service, we wouldn’t have had this amazing conversation! Another plus to kids in service.

I explained to him how important it is for us, as Christians, to help others in need, and to share the Gospel with everyone. He thought this was so cool and seemed to understand. James is hoping to take this trip if he can get off work. How great will it be if James can go and we can teach the boys how important this is?!

The boys made it through announcements and then I took them back to the nursery. 50 minutes this time!! Twice as long as last week! We probably could have made it longer, but it is new for me too and I could tell I needed to stop in order to not lose my patience. They did great, but we were starting to make a little more noise and get antsy, and service was about to start.

I look forward to continuing this journey and sharing with you how we are learning to make it work for our family. Tomorrow, I am excited to have a guest post on this discussion from Candace at Sacred Mommyhood!!

What do you think about having children in service?

His Rib: Back in Action

ImageWhere in the world has His Rib been?

Well I’ll tell you! Just like you, I am a super busy mom!! BUT, I have terribly missed my blog and I am ready to hit the ground running and strong.

So what’s coming?

I’m so glad you asked! Here is a sneak peek of what is to come in the upcoming days:

  • Come Fly With Me – A day by day guide to keeping up with the housecleaning in the midst of a busy schedule!
  • How to Coupon Successfully:Your 3-Ring Binder and Getting Started Again (or For the First Time) – Apparently I never actually finished this series… OOPS!! So we are going to finish it up and I will show you how we have lived without couponing (but with the benefits of our efforts) and how I am going at it again!
  • Touchy Topic Tuesdays – They are back!! And with great topics such as guest posts on vaccinations, homeschooling, responsibilities for the kids, and more!
  • Thankful Thursdays – Will debut again! We have so much to be thankful daily. I will share with you some of these things each week.
  • Shiloh: My Third Heaven Baby – I will share with you my experiences as I faced my third miscarriage.
  • And so much more!!! There will be menu-planning, and in-depth look at my personal daily meal plan as I journey to get healthy.
  • Did I mention my devotions will be coming back?!?! Have you missed these?? I have missed sharing them with you!

WOW!!! I am soooo excited! I know there is more, but cannot share all my secrets!!! Are you excited with me?!? I hope so! Thanks for joining me in my journey, and I look forward to your feedback on our ride!!

What would you like to see a post on?

A Study Through the Bible: 1 John 2: 7-11

Did you see my post on 1 John 2:3-6?

Hi! Let’s get these devotions back up and going! God is moving in our lives, and we are amazed everyday and that things He is doing in and through us. We thought we were heading in one direction, but God has pointed us in another for the time being. I am excited to see where it will lead me and my family. I am so blessed!

Opening Prayer

God, thank You! Thank You that even when we make our own plans, You step in to guide us the way we should be going. Thank You that You are faithful and providing for us everyday!

Thank You for sending our church a new Pastor!!!! Thank You for leading us through a tough several months, and never giving up on us. Thank You for the amazing things You have in store for our church and this community!

Speak to me today. Use Your Word to confirm the plan You have for each and every one of us! Amen.

Scripture

1 John 2:7-11

7 Dear friends,   I am not writing you a new command but an old one, which you have had since the beginning.   This old command is the message you have heard. 8 Yet I am writing you a new command;  its truth is seen in him and in you, because the darkness is passing  and the true light  is already shining.

9 Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates a brother or sister  is still in the darkness. 10 Anyone who loves their brother and sisterlives in the light,   and there is nothing in them to make them stumble. 11 But anyone who hates a brother or sister  is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness.  They do not know where they are going, because the darkness has blinded them. (NIV)

Application

What a strong command! Obviously one we struggle with often or it would not have to be emphasized over and over again. Love, love, love! If we ever get overwhelmed with the Bible and all of the commands, just love. How can we go wrong if we love?

I don’t mean love the sin. Some argue we should allow things to happen, or it’s ok for people to do this or that because it’s all out of love. “God won’t condemn people for who the love.” and such. This is simply not true. God will still judge those according to their sins, even if it is done in “love.” This scripture speaks to us about loving one another and showing God’s love. God loves all of us, but that does not mean He encourages acts of sin.

Moving on, because that is not the point. So what is the point? We oftentimes hold onto anger, bitterness, resentment. We forget to forgive and show love. Christ loves us and we need to show that same love. People will learn about Christ and His love by how we represent Him. We must be in the light as He is. We must love and forgive as He does. It is so easy to say this, but so difficult to do at times, especially when we are hurt deeply.

I struggled with forgiveness several years ago. I found myself angry at a close loved one and unable to truly love them. I had to pray and pray and pray that God would help me to forgive and learn to love them again. It took a long time to get past the hurt and deep scars, but with God as my strength, I was able to love again and truly forgive.

We must watch carefully for the small acts of hatred we show too. We can see the big ways people hurt us, and we know we need help to forgive, but sometimes it’s the little things we let slide into our hearts. We begin to slowly hate someone without even realize what we are doing, or with simple justifications. I am so thankful that this Word reminds me to love and to live in the light. And, that I serve a God who helps me show the love that may not always be easy for me.

Closing Prayer

God, thank You for the reminder that I need to love. You have shown me so much love even when I didn’t deserve it. Who I am if I do not show that same love in return? Help me show that same love and forgiveness. I love you! Amen.

A Study Through the Bible: 1 John 2: 3-6

Did you see my post on 1 John 2:1-2?

I have missed my blog!!! And my wonderful readers!! We are getting our house ready to sell: boxing up, taping walls, painting, yard work, and about to put in hardwood floors. Whew! In addition, my husband and I decided I would accept an offer on part time job that allows me to bring my kids. This has been quite a change for us this week, and we are learning to adjust. Thanks for your patience on this journey!

Opening Prayer

God, wow what a week! A lot of changes and unexpected things coming my way. I am so thankful that no matter what I am faced with You are with me and I am living in Your Will. Speak to me and give me the strength I need to face what is still to come.  Amen.

Scripture

1 John 2:3-6

We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands. The man who says, “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But if anyone obeys his word, God’s love is truly made complete in him.This is how we know we are in him: Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did. (NIV)

Application

Wow! This is EXACTLY what I needed to be reminded of right now. It amazes me how God knows exactly what we need to hear especially when we are feeling discouraged.

We must obey His commands. He commands us to love Him first. He commands us to love one another. His Word is filled with commands that help us lead happy, fulfilling lives, that share His light. He wants us to be honest and trustworthy people. He wants us to live our lives following His Word.

We may fall short, but, as His Word told us in the previous verses, He forgives us those sins. He wants us to walk in His light. He wants us to read and listen to His Word and what He tells us in our prayer time with Him. We may not always understand why things happen, but we must trust that if we are living as Jesus lived, we cannot go wrong.

We must obey Him to show that we love Him! I believe this is how others will also know we are living with Christ. We can look to see if they are obeying the Word. We can check their actions with the Bible. I am not talking about judgement, but common sense. In order to know who to trust and who to listen to (as in our pastors and teachers), we must first look to see that they are obeying the Word. It is our rule book and teaches us how to live. If people claim to be living for Him, but do not follow His example, we need to be mindful.

This is also how we know how to live our own lives. We shouldn’t just use the Bible to check other people’s motives, we should use it to check our own motives. We should use His Word as a guide. How wonderful that not only did He send His son to die for us, so that He can forgive us our sins, but He also sent His Son to set an example for how we should live our lives. There is no better example!

Closing Prayer

Lord, You are so amazing and Your Word always leaves me to think and check my actions. I need to make sure I am living just as Your son lived. I need to walk in Your light and share Your love. I need to live by the commands You gave me, and as long as I do that then I know I am living and doing just as I should be. Thank You for this confirmation. I love You! Amen.

A Study Through the Bible: 1 John 2: 1-2

Did you see my post on 1 John: 5-10?

Opening Prayer

God, You have amazing ways of opening and closing doors. We do not always understand why things happen the way they do, but I know I am living in Your Will and I am at peace. Show me through Your Word what I need to hear today. Amen.

Scripture

1 John 2:1-2

My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have one who speaks to the Father in our defense —Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also forthe sins of the whole world.  (NIV)

Application

This passage continues his statement from chapter 1. We have all sinned. Even as believers we are still sinners and are in need of Jesus’ defense. How amazing that He loves us enough to defend us even when we have wronged Him.

The Bible is clear, do not sin, but if you do, Jesus Christ has already sacrificed for those sins! Wow! Before I was born He knew I would fall short, and He took care of me even then.

Maybe the last part is even more important, for us as believers, to pay close attention to. Yes He died for us, and that is wonderful, but He died for the WHOLE WORLD! It is so easy to feel happy and content. Yippie… I am going to Heaven! I don’t need to worry anymore!

What about those around us? Our friends and family? What about those in other countries where churches cannot be found every 100 yards or so? What am I doing for them?

I can pray more. I can share more with those around me. I can give more to the missionaries that go where I cannot. Oh how we, as Christians, need to focus so much less on us and more on others. I know I get caught up in my world: me and my cute little family! I need to see and remember that Christ didn’t just die for me, but for EVERYONE! Let’s agree not to be selfish with our God!

*Apparently God really wants me to hear this. Our Youth Pastor, Wade, preached about sharing Christ with others this last Sunday. It was a wonderful message he left us with on his last Sunday at our Church.

Closing Prayer

God, wow! You sent Your son to die for me, but also for EVERYONE else. This is not an exclusive group. You didn’t just select a few. You want everyone! Thank You for loving us that much! Remind me always, to live a life that is a testimony to You, but also to share You with everyone! Amen.

A Study Through the Bible: 1 John 1: 5-10

Did you see my post on 1 John 1: 1-4?

Opening Prayer

God, I need this time, more than ever, this morning. Please show me what I need to hear! Give me peace and open my eyes to the things I need right now. Amen.

Scripture

1 John 1: 5-10

This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all[b] sin.

If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives. (NIV)

Application

Am I the only one who reads God’s Word and ends up with a ton of Christian songs stuck in my head?!? I just think it’s funny!

Anyways… what a strong message today. Let’s take the Word and read it literally. What does it mean if something is in the light? It means it can be seen. There is nothing hiding. What about the dark? Things are unknown, unseen. You don’t know what to expect.

God is light. He shines on us and nothing is hidden. We cannot be with Him, since He is light, and still be in darkness. If I walk outside and the sun is shining on me, I cannot make myself and my area dark, without putting up a wall. God is our light, we have to live by the truth otherwise we have created this wall. I want to live in the light! I want to be seen and I want to live a life worthy of that light.

No one is perfect. We all sin and fall short, but He forgives our sin. This passage talks about not living in darkness, but yet we all sin. Just because we sin does not mean we are living in darkness. Darkness happens when we shut out God. When we build up the wall to create darkness despite the light.

We need to be honest people. We cannot tell the world become a Christian, stop being sinners. We are all sinners, but we have One who restores us and makes us new each and everyday. The point is that in the light the sin is revealed. It can be seen and taken care of. The light allows us to recognize the sin and confess it to God and seek forgiveness.

Closing Prayer

God, what a wonderful message. You are our light and reveal the things we need to fix. Thank You that even though I am not perfect, You still forgive and want me to live in Your light! I pray You continue to reveal in me the things that I need to work on, and give me wisdom to know how to best serve You. Amen.

A Study Through the Bible: 1 John 1: 1-4

Well, for those who have been following my Bible Study, I am sorry it has taken me so long to get 1 John started. I have been researching and trying to find a good site to use. I did not find a super great one, but did find one that gave me some information on the book. You can see it here.

So I have decided to jump in and go for it on my own. Please bear with me, I am not a Reverend like my husband ;-), and he doesn’t always have time to read over my stuff to make sure I am correct, but God created the Word for His everyday people and I believe we can all read it and take from it. Having said that, here we go!!

Opening Prayer

God, I am so very excited to study with You through one of my favorite books in the Bible. Show me and speak to me. Use me to share Your Word and read it for what it says! I love You and look forward to Your Words always. Amen.

Scripture

1 John 1: 1-4

That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched —this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. We write this to make our joy complete. (NIV)

Application

I love this opening. You can sense John’s compassion for Christ and for these believers. He comes to remind them what they have seen and heard. He reminds them that they have a true testimony. John comes to tell what he has learned and that he is learning from God and His son.

We should never listen to teachers or pastors who are not in fellowship with God and His son, Christ. We can tell this by the fruit they bear. John has a heart for the people and he wants to share with them the things he has learned. I love this and love that believers continue to learn from his powerful words! I wonder if they knew then the power their words would have this many years later. Amazing!

Closing Prayer

Lord, You put a special calling on the lives of those who wrote Your word. Thank You for speaking to them and using them so that I can learn from them over 1900 years later! How amazing! I am in awe of You. I love You and look forward to reading through this passage more. Amen.

A Study Through the Bible: James 5:19-20

Did you see James 5:13-18 Post?

Well this is exciting and sad. Today is the last of our study through James! Thanks for joining me. I learned a lot and God really spoke to me. I hope and pray He did the same for you!

Join me next week as I start through 1 John!

I am using this free online Bible study website. Join me!

My Prayer

God, Thank You for the Book of James. It speaks such truth and is still relevant still today. I have enjoyed all that You have taught me and continue to teach me every time I get in Your Word. Speak to me today and guide my heart’s desires. Amen.

Scripture

James 5:19-20

19 My brothers, if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring him back, 20 remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save him from death and cover over a multitude of sins. (NIV)

Application

What a powerful conclusion. We were all lost at one point. God reached out to us and brought us close to Him. We need to do the same for other believers. I have several friends who were hurt by the church and because of this refuse to attend church and some have still have bitterness to God.

When I hear how they were hurt, it doesn’t surprise me that they left, but it hurts me that no one else has been able to reach out to them and bring them back. We are all human in the church, but as believers we should be held to a higher standard. A standard that shows love, compassion, and understanding, rather than judgement and condemnation. We need to remember “There, but for the grace of God, go I.”

When I meet these people, I show them love. I invite them to my church or to church events they may find interesting. I want them to feel the love and warmth of the church through me and the friendship I offer. We are called to bring them back to the truth. That is a big calling so we better get to work. I know too many who are out there!

Closing Prayer

God, Thank You for a strong message today. You have called us to reach the unbelievers, but You have also called us to reach out to those who have fallen away. The church should be a place of love and oftentimes it ends up being a place full of hurt and anger. Help us to remember how our church should be and to reach out to those who have strayed away. Lead me. Guide me. Send them to me. Amen.

A Study Through the Bible: James 5:13-18

Did you see James 5:7-12 Post?

Oh my gosh! I thought I lost this whole post when I was almost finished with it! To make matters worse, I thought I lost it because I thought my computer had a virus. So far things seem fine. I guess it just needed some rest!

I am using this free online Bible study website. Join me!

My Prayer

God I praise You and thank You for all that You have shown me through the Book of James. You Word is amazing and is still relevant even today! Speak to me and open my heart to hear from You today. Amen.

Scripture

James 5:13-18

13 Is any one of you in trouble? He should pray. Is anyone happy? Let him sing songs of praise. 14 Is any one of you sick? He should call the elders of the church to pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven. 16 Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.

17 Elijah was a man just like us. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years. 18 Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced its crops. (NIV)

Application

I remember being a youth at summer camp and I lost my favorite bracelet. I had been walking all over the camp grounds, through the woods, up to the dining halls! The bracelet could be anywhere! I was devastated.

Here I was worshiping God all week and seeking His Will for my life and I lost something precious to me. I know this all sounds silly, but remember I was in youth 😉 and don’t we all have those things (even though we shouldn’t put too much importance into things) that we cherish? This was mine.

I knew I would never find it! I began to pray and pray and pray that I would find it. On my way to worship service that evening, as I walked through the woods, I just happened to look down, and there is was!!! Right there in the dirt, in the middle of this huge wooded area!

This story taught me a powerful lesson at such a young age. Nothing is too small a prayer for God. He hears our cries and answers prayers. When I doubt Him, I remember the sweet, young girl who prayed, even for the small things!

It is so easy to begin complaining or worrying when we are in need. It is easy to run to our friends and family to rant, but sometimes, probably most of the time, we should just stop and pray! This seems like the “Christian” answer, but it is true. He wants us to come to Him with all emotions we go through.

We also need to have accountability. We need trusted Christians surrounding us and encouraging us to make wise choices, especially in areas we would normally fall short in. God also wants us to talk to Him and confess our sins. He knows everything so there is no use in hiding, instead we should seek Him and His strength to overcome our failures. He is wonderful and listens and forgives us!

Closing Prayer

God, Thank You that You hear our prayers. Even the small ones that some may think are silly. You answer all of our prayers in both the way we want and in other ways we may not think we want. Thank You that either way You hear us and love us. Thank You also for forgiveness. Without it we would be condemned to hell. You are so amazing and worthy of praise! Amen.