- Breast Reconstruction, Boy Momming and Believing God

Category Archives

64 Articles

BOY MOM MONDAY – Proverbs 16:25 The Right Path

IMG_5047 - Copy

Proverbs 16:25 There is a way that seems right to man, but in the end it leads to death.

Our family enjoys backpacking together. Following a trail in the woods away from regular life gives us quality uninterrupted family time, great exercise and an appreciation for all the modern conveniences we enjoy in our day-to-day. You know, like beds and toilets. 🙂

But it is important to stay on the trail. Veering off can lead to injury and/or getting lost.

A couple years ago, one of our boys decided to walk along the rocks in a river. Not a big deal. He wasn’t at risk of getting lost, and what boy doesn’t love climbing on rocks and playing in the water? What he didn’t take into account however, was that rocks are slippery when they’re wet. He took a tumble right into the river.

This did not lead him to death as our Proverbs verse says today, but it did lead to drenched clothes. Clothes we had to hang from sticks over a campfire to dry.

Our kids don’t always think clearly through the path they are going to take and find out too late that the rocks are wet. As they mature, my hope for my boys is that they will learn to discern God’s “right path” from the path that seems right to them. And that in doing so they can avoid consequences far worse than wet clothes.

Dear Lord, I pray that my kids will not be deceived by their own sometimes skewed perspective of the right path, and that they will seek you and follow your path, even when the wrong one is enticing. Amen.

0 views

BOY MOM MONDAY – Proverbs 15:31 – Rebuking

boy mom monday pr 15

(My Boy Mom Monday devos came to a halt in January because, well, cancer. I’m still committed to making my way through the Proverbs in prayer for my boys, and now that cancer is no longer occupying 100% of my time and energy, I’m ready to get back to it. I’d love for you to join me. Our boys need praying mamas.)

Proverbs 15:31 He who listens to a life-giving rebuke will be at home among the wise.

During my freshman year of college, I made a decision that I knew was contrary to what God wanted for me. I tried to ignore the voice inside of me that kept reminding me I was heading the wrong direction.

Sometimes it was easy. And sometimes it was hard.

It was easy when I hung out with people who didn’t have a problem with my choice. People who were not going to “judge me” as we are so fond of saying these days.

It was hard when I was surrounded by people who wanted to keep me accountable to scripture. Though I had given my life to Christ at a young age and mostly wanted to live according to his ways, I had this one area where I willing disobeyed, and I kind of wanted to keep it that way.

My first thought when I realized I’d be sharing a dorm floor my sophomore year with a lot of Christians was “Oh crap, I’m gonna be convicted about this sin all the time.”

And I was.

I shared living space with young women who saw my sin and weren’t afraid to call me out, and it was just what I needed. It was a tough decision, but I turned from that sin. And now, 20+ years later, I’m still extremely grateful for the friends who helped me turn around.

I thank God for putting women in my life who weren’t afraid to call a sin a sin and who loved me through a broken heart; the result of my sin.

I pray that as my kids grow and make bad choices, (and they will no doubt make some bad choices) that they will have friends who love them enough to call them out. And that they will be sensitive enough to accept the truth in the form of a loving rebuke and change their ways.

Prayer: Lord, I pray that as my kids grow, you will deepen their friendships with guys who will not stand by and let them choose sin. I ask specifically for friends who will be bold enough and loving enough to call them out when needed, and will see them through as they deal with the consequences of their bad choices. Amen

0 views

BOY MOM MONDAY – Proverbs 14:23 – Hard Work

flip

Proverbs 14:23 All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty.

“Hey mom, can you come spot me? I’m gonna try a backflip.”

My middle son Owen asked me that question just as offhandedly as he might have asked me to help him with a math problem. In his head, it was something he wanted to do so he was gonna try it. In my head, it was a crazy thought, and he would probably get over it in the near future.

But he didn’t.  Instead, he did what kids these days do and found YouTube instruction videos. Then he started practicing. He’s always done crazy stuff off the diving board, but I really didn’t think he’d figure this one out. In fact, I pretty much laughed him off.

But he was not deterred. First he used a futon mattress for protection. Once he was able to successfully land a flip on the mattress, he moved to an exercise mat. Now he can pretty much flip off of anything anywhere.

I considered shutting him down right away. I didn’t really believe he would succeed, and I wasn’t really hot on the idea of an emergency room trip. But he worked at it until he got it, and now he reaps the benefits of being able to do something pretty cool that most people wouldn’t even think of trying.

Hard work comes in different shapes and sizes, but the reward is generally the same. Satisfaction in a job well done and a sense of accomplishment. If my boys have a good understanding of that before they grow up and leave this house, I will be a happy mama.

Dear Lord, I pray that you will help me to train up my boys to know the value of hard work. Help them to understand that hard work leads to profit. Amen.

1 view

BOY MOM MONDAY – Proverbs 13:5 – Hate Sin

abc05

Proverbs 13:5 The righteous hate what is false, but the desires of the diligent are fully satisfied.

Our kids are growing up in a society that loves making evil good and good evil. It’s a confusing and frustrating generation for Christian kids to be immersed in.  The Bible draws clear lines between what is false and what is true, but our society no longer finds its morality within scriptures. Instead we live in a world of shifting mores. Whatever feels right right now, must be right. In this dangerous way of thinking, “truth” shifts as often as the seasons.

Movies, TV shows and even school curriculum lead our kids to believe things that are false are really true. We see it in biology and the big bang theory, we see it in the absolute lack of respect for purity, we see it in the all out pursuit of pleasure with disregard for anything or anyone that gets hurt along the way.

Hate is a harsh word, and people don’t like to use it in our culture, but God doesn’t tell us to tolerate what is false. He doesn’t tell us to ignore what is false. He doesn’t even tell us to avoid what is false. He tells us to hate it.

When we hate what is opposed to God, we are obeying his commands. This doesn’t mean hating people. God never calls us to hate people. He does however call us to hate sin. Our own sin and the sin of others. When our kids are able to see the evil of sin, they will more clearly understand their desperate need for the cross.

And more than anything, I want my kids to see their need for the cross.

Prayer

Dear Lord, I ask that you will help my kids to clearly see evil for what it is. Help them to see through the sugar-coating society puts on sin and have an understanding of the depravity of it, that they may on the flipside, see the absolute beauty of the cross. Amen.

0 views

BOY MOM MONDAY Proverbs 12:26 Friendship

by KimHarms 0 Comments

 carterjosiah

12:26 A righteous man is cautious in friendship, but the way of the wicked leads them astray.

One of my oldest son’s best friends is the son of one of my college friends. It is not by accident.

When our boys were in third grade, my friend and I became proactive in their friendship, orchestrating times for the boys to hang out together. Theirs is a friendship that probably wouldn’t have blossomed without a little push because the boys didn’t naturally cross paths. In all of their years of elementary school, they were only placed in the same classroom one time, and our families attend different churches so they didn’t see each other on the weekends either.

But Jen and I knew that they would be a good pair, so we made the effort to help them develop a friendship. They are now teenagers, and they are pretty tight. From shooting hoops, to playing video games and watching movies they spend a lot of time together. Sometimes they even get up to work out together before school in the morning.

I don’t regret the role I played in their friendship. I would do it again in a second.

Carter and Josiah’s friendship is a blessing, but I know I can’t handpick all of their friends. I can, however, pray.

I’m happy to say that my boys have picked some pretty awesome guys to hang out with, and I am not concerned that their friends are leading them down a wrong path. As they get older though, the temptations from the world will get stronger, and it is absolutely vital that I pray for my boys to be cautious and wise in developing friendships.

Prayer

Lord, I thank you for the good friendships you have blessed my boys with. I pray that you will lead them away from friendships that will pull them away from you, and help them to be the kind of friend that in both their actions and words is trustworthy and committed. And may their friendships honor you. Amen.

0 views

BOY MOM MONDAY Proverbs 11:2 Humility

by KimHarms 0 Comments

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Proverbs 11:2 When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.

My Owen loves to play football.  Before he was old enough for school ball he played on a youth team, and man did he enjoy it.

One of those years his team won one game. One game.

They practiced hard and played hard, but they just couldn’t pull off a win.

I credit his coaches for instilling in the boys the love of the game, even in loss. They encouraged those boys continually. And each week the kids went out and gave it their best. And they never stopped believing in their potential to win.

It’s hard to watch your kid lose week after week, but we tend to learn more from loss than from a win don’t we? Repeated loss is humbling, and wisdom comes when we are humble.

I think of that old football movie Rudy. Rudy dreamed of playing Notre Dame football. He was small. He was poor, and nobody really believed in him. But he never gave up believing in his potential to play, and his long hard road to being a part of the Fighting Irish shaped him into a man of character.

Of course I love to see my kids win when they play sports, but above that I prefer to see them have a humble attitude. Not one of cockiness and self-importance, but one of character that exudes an understanding of the value of loss and appreciates the joy of simply playing the game.

Prayer

Dear Lord, I pray that as my kids compete in various activities, you teach them humility through loss. I also ask that that humility will carry over into their wins. Amen.

0 views

Church Vs. Kid’s Sports: 5 Principles for Making the Tough Call @ TCW

IMG_5539

I love watching my kids play sports. I’m a quiet person by nature, but when a game gets intense sometimes I yell a little. And sometimes I grind my fingernails into Corey’s leg. And sometimes I think he’d prefer to sit with someone else.

As much as I enjoy watching my kids play, extra-curriculars on Sunday are hard for me. When I was growing up, Sundays were untouched by youth sports. In fact, they were untouched by pretty much anything but church and family. (I can’t think of a business that was open in my small hometown on Sundays.)

Our culture has changed, and we are faced with decisions our parents didn’t have to make. My article at Today’s Christian Woman today focuses on the dilemma we face when church activities and youth sports collide. The right answer for my family may not be the right one for yours, but I believe it is so very important Christian families think through how the can be involved in sports without pushing God aside.

Should I Skip Church for Youth Sports? 5 Principles for Making a Tough Call

I always thought it would be a simple decision to make. Church before sports. End of discussion. Easy peasy lemon squeezy. But, as is often the case, the thought of making a decision and the act of making that decision are very different things.

My friend and I’d had a conversation over morning coffee about our decision to not let our children miss Sunday morning church services to take part in sporting events. That very evening I received an email containing my son’s basketball schedule for the weekend.

Two games were scheduled for Saturday and two for Sunday. The first Sunday game was slated for 9:30 A.M., smack dab in the middle of church.

I sat at the kitchen table waffling on the decision I had confidently shared with my friend hours earlier. Well, maybe it’ll be okay if he misses this one time, the little voice in my head reasoned. Weighing most heavily on my heart was the fact that I knew my son would be disappointed if he couldn’t play. Like most folks, I don’t like to see my children disappointed.

In the end, he did miss that game. He sat in church with his father, his brothers, and me while his team played a game across town. It was painful. Painful, I tell you.

But it was also fruitful. You see, my husband, Corey, and I didn’t tell our son outright that he couldn’t play that Sunday. The conversation went something like this:

“Hey, Owen, what do you think about that game being scheduled during church?”

“It stinks,” he answered. After a short silence he followed up with, “But I can still play the other games, right?”

He was disappointed for sure, but he knew without prompting from his parents what it meant to have a game scheduled during church. It was a proud mommy moment when I witnessed him come to that conclusion himself.

Making the Tough Call

The last thing I want to be is judgmental toward parents facing this common predicament. We all live in the same over-scheduled society where, in the great drama of life, church is often cast as the understudy and sometimes doesn’t even get a part to play. Christian parents are in a tough spot when it comes to church vs. sports conflicts.

It’s imperative that we think through our family priorities and make wise decisions about kids’ sports and other extracurricular activities. We are called to be a light to this world, and sometimes that light may shine brighter when it is missing from the basketball court. . .

Find the rest of the article here Should I Skip Church for Youth Sports?

2 views

BOY MOM MONDAY – Proverbs 10:19 Speech

speech-bubbles

Proverbs 10:19 When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise.

One of the things that attracts me to and conversely makes me want to strangle my husband is that he chooses his words carefully.  If the average number of words spoken by a male really is 7,000 as they say, Corey could easily get by with 3,500.

If it doesn’t need to be said, he doesn’t say it.

I hate this when he’s been gone for an extended period of time and returns home to describe the whole experience in two sentences. What?!? How is that even possible?

I love this when we are in a serious discussion or when I witness him discussing something meaty with others. Some people process externally and can do it well. But the more words that are said, the higher the opportunity for sin to squeeze in. So many of us tend to speak first and think second. This doesn’t necessarily lead to sin. It can, however, lessen the value of each statement.

Most of time when Corey says something, it is after much thought, and it is meaningful.  A number of people have told me over the years that whenever they are in a meeting that includes Corey, their ears perk up when he starts talking.

He thinks before he speaks, and his spoken thoughts are valuable and insightful. People recognize and appreciate that about him.  I hope that my sons will see this in their dad and strive to follow his lead in communicating wisely.

Prayer

Lord, I pray my children will take after their father and think before they speak. May you develop them into good communicators, not necessarily good talkers. Let their words represent a mature thought life and may the words of their tongues bring you glory. Amen.

0 views

BOY MOM MONDAY – Proverbs 9:9 EFFORT

by KimHarms 2 Comments

file7071266529091

Proverbs 9:9 Instruct a wise man and he will be wiser still; teach a righteous man and he will add to his learning.

My kids aren’t big fans of the 8:00 – 3:00 school day routine. (It’s boring, they say.) And it perplexes them that they must go to school for nine months of the year while summer break lasts only three months. In their minds, to be fair, school should be six months of the year and break should fill the other six.

They wouldn’t say that they think learning is fun, but my oldest son found an appreciation for the hard work of studying last year. School has always come easy to him. He can spell pretty much every word in the English language (it’s not uncommon for his dad to ask him how to spell something), and he took Algebra in seventh grade.

That Algebra class introduced him to the world of studying.

Never having studied a day in his life, he found himself in a class where everything didn’t just fall into place for him. He had to learn to study. The weekend before semester tests, he and his dad studied for 6 hours together. (Whew! My brain hurt just watching them.)

But you know what? He learned the material and got an A on the test.

I hope that as he grows, he will not just slide by on his natural abilities, but that he will appreciate what studying can do. And may he realize that though he is a smart kid according to the school’s standards, he can still add to his learning if he puts forth effort.

Prayer

Lord, I pray that my kids will understand the value of listening to instruction and learning new and sometimes difficult things. And as they study and learn the things they need to in school, I pray they will find that they can grow in wisdom by studying your word as well. Amen.

2 views

Boy Mom: 5 Tips to Communication with Your Son (@ TCW)

IMG_4623

My latest article went LIVE at Today’s Christian Woman. (Insights from my years of learning to communicate with the man-children God so richly blessed me with.)

You can start reading it here and click the link at the end to get the rest of the story.

Boy Moms: 5 Tips for Communication with Your Son

It’s 9:55 P.M. A lover of sleep, what I want to do right now is curl up in bed with my hubby and watch an episode of M*A*S*H on Netflix while I fall asleep on his shoulder.

Instead, I flip to Chapter 33 and start reading Unbroken (a book about an Air Force lieutenant in World War II). It’s just me and my two middle school boys in these final moments of the day. And though my body longs for sleep, my heart is full.

In this last half hour of the night, I scratch the backs of my ever-growing boys, and then we read. Together we enter a different world. Sometimes it’s fantasy. Sometimes it’s history. Sometimes it’s biography. And sometimes after we return from the book’s world, the boys invite me into their worlds, sharing their thoughts and dreams. Though these times are rare, it’s taken me a lot of work and learning to get to this point.

Here are a few key elements I’ve found to be necessary in order to successfully communicate with my sons.

1. Don’t Push

My sons’ worlds are not open to me all the time. In fact, more often than not, their thought lives do not welcome a visit from Mom.

In their early elementary years, this seriously bothered me. To counter it, I pummeled them with questions on the ride home from school each day: “How was your day? Who’d you play with at recess? How’d your spelling test go? Did you eat all your lunch?”

Their grunts and two-word responses didn’t satisfy my need for information, and my barrage of questions annoyed my boys. After completing seven long hours of school, the last thing they wanted to do was talk about it.

I had to back off…   http://bit.ly/1PEB1hs

2 views
%d bloggers like this: