Spring Into Change

The birds’ songs ring through the morning air, little plant sprouts have shot up seemingly overnight, andwilfried-santer-233377-unsplash the sun has finally made an appearance through the break in the clouds. The warmer air and tree buds give us a sense of renewal and we can’t help but feel good. Welcome to Spring.

By now, we have likely given up on our New Year’s resolutions, but there is just something about spring that lights us up with possibilities. It’s our second chance. We’ve still got ¾ of the year left and we’re determined to make it great. Yes, springtime is a perfect time for resolutions – take 2. But before you choose to renew your resolution, or make a new one, may I make a suggestion?

Let’s change our frame of mind. That’s it. That’s my suggestion. Let’s work on thinking differently.

camila-damasio-259515-unsplashLike the rebirth of spring, each day is a do-over. We have the opportunity to start anew, or hold on to the pain of yesterday. We can choose to view the day as a gift with a new attitude and outlook, or continue to cling to the negative attitudes we tend to have. You can take two people in the same situation, and they could say two very different things about the situation based solely on their frames of mind.

It’s easy to complain about the rush hour traffic, and get angry when our workload is overwhelming. When our kids don’t do what we want them to, we lose our tempers. And the worst thing is we allow these things to ruin our entire day! We let these feelings and frame of mind to turn us into pessimists. Before we know it, we view every interaction and experience through the skewed vision of our negative frame of mind. We start to question people’s intentions – we’re sure they aren’t just being nice, they must want something. We complain about imperfections in everything. But since when has anything been perfect? Why is that suddenly an expectation? Everything we experience is filtered through our destructive mind, forcing even great things to look terrible.

I went on vacation to a beautiful resort in Mexico a couple years ago. This vacation was long overdue and I just couldn’t wait to arrive! I was greeted with cool, damp towels and shown to my luxurious room. But my heart was on the beach, so I wasted no time! As I stood taking in the waves, breathing in the salty air, I heard someone say to their spouse, “This is the ugliest beach I’ve ever been to! Look at all the seaweed!”

To me, the beach was pretty darn close to Heaven. I’d come from a long Kansas City winter, so the sun, sand, and water were exactly what I needed. Sure, there was seaweed and I, too, had been to beaches with prettier sand and water. But I didn’t care. I found it beautiful, because I wanted to.

We often forget how much is affected by our frame of mind. We forget to appreciate ourethan-robertson-132225-unsplash children when they’re trying our patience. We forget that our job is a blessing. We forget that the long drive to work is an opportunity to be alone with God. One day, when our lives look different, we will wish we could go back. We’ll give almost anything to experience our kids at this age again. We won’t remember the work we do, but we’ll remember the people we worked with fondly, and wish we could talk to them again. Think about this for a moment: One day, years from now, you will miss the very thing you’re complaining about. One day, you will wish you would have lived it happily instead of just existing in it.

We also tend to hold on to our mistakes and guilt. We drown in our pain when we’ve been hurt and refuse to forgive. We hold on to our misery until it’s the “right day” or “right season” to let it go; to start over. But that isn’t God’s plan for us. We should be spending time in prayer, asking God to help us let go of all these negative things daily, allowing the next morning be a brand new start. By doing this, you will find it easier to set, and achieve goals instead of resolutions.

A few friends of mine and I are reading “Your Best Year Ever” by, Michael Hyatt. This has been eye opening for us. He talks about setting and actually achieving goals – and mindset can make or break you! I highly recommend this book to everyone! You can change everything about your life by simply changing how you think.

Don’t limit self-evaluation, and resetting your mindset to only once or twice per year. Do it daily. Allow God to show you who you are in Him. Allow God to show you that you don’t need more things, or certain circumstances to be happy. You only need to choose happiness to have it.


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.  Romans 12:2

Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind.  Philippians 2:1-2

Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. Do not quench the Spirit.  1 Thessalonians 5:16-19


“Life Is Beautiful” By, The Afters YouTube

“Life Is Beautiful” By, The Afters Spotify

From Mom-Shaming to Mom-Celebrating

pexels-photo-116151If you’re a mother, you’ve been there. In that moment, you’re desperate. You’d do almost anything to quiet that kiddo down. You tried bribing – something you swore you’d never do. You attempted to bargain with God – “Lord, if you magically put this kid to sleep, I swear I’ll do anything you want!” But, no can do. That monster of yours has just reached a high screech that makes dogs whine, and there is no calming them down. You’re this close to pulling your own hair out. You shoot apologetic glances to those around you who have to listen to your screaming child. And then it happens. Mom-Shaming.

There is nothing worse than standing in a long line at the store with a child who’s throwing a fit. Unless of course, there is someone who is telling you what a terrible mother you are while you’re standing in line with a child who’s throwing a fit. That is most definitely worse.

I’ve often wondered what is going through the mind of a mom-shamer. Do they think their harsh words will give you some sort of ah-ha moment that will make you mysteriously get your kid to stop crying? “Wow! Thank you for telling me what a terrible mother I am – I’ve seen the light!” Does it make them feel superior? No offence, but they should aim higher as that’s not exactly a mother’s best moment. Maybe they really think they have the answers. But if that were the case, what about that delivery is helpful? I try to always assume the best intentions of those with whom I interact. But no matter how I try, I can’t come up with a positive spin on mom-shaming.

It breaks my heart to think that women can be so mean-hearted to one another. Motherhood is hard. (Understatement of the century, right?) So why is it that when we see a mom in a moment of struggle, we decide to (metaphorically) kick her?

Everyone has their own idea of the “correct” way to raise a child. Most mothers are open to advice, especially if this is their first rodeo. But if you get nothing else from this post, please understand this: no one wants advice in the form of hostility. That is not helpful. In fact, it makes the situation far worse. Which brings me back to the question of intention.

Here are three things I’ve learned about mom-shaming.

  1. Mom-shaming isn’t about you.

Most mom-shaming happens from someone who has no idea who you are, or what you have been through. In the example I used at the beginning of this blog, the mom-shamer probably doesn’t know that your child caused most of the items in aisle 15 to fall on the ground in the store and that he hit his sister not once, not twice, but three times in the last pexels-photo-235554ten minutes, and he’s screaming at the top of his lungs because you said he couldn’t have a KitKat bar. She doesn’t know that due to this chain of events, you’ve reached your limit. She also has no idea that you kissed his boo-boo earlier, how he always says “pwease and tank you” thanks to your superb mommying skills, or how you read to him out of a children’s bible every day. It’s in this chaotic moment, with your red face, the vein popping out of your forehead and wild eyes, that this person judged you. I promise it says more about that person than it does you.

  1. We’ve all done it.

Many of you are fiercely denying that we have mom-shamed before. But think about it. In your whole life, have you ever looked at a mother and judged them? The answer is yes. We mustn’t forget that we all make mom-mistakes and that mom-shaming only makes these mistakes harder to get over. Listen, we are forgiven by the creator of the universe for everything we have ever done and will ever do. This is not limited to motherhood, but everything. If the creator – the one true God – can forgive us anything, who are we to cast judgement on a mother just trying to do her best? Would it kill us to say something nice and encouraging to her? What if we said, “do you need anything? Can I help you in some way?” Or “I’ve totally been there. It gets better.”

  1. In the end, it doesn’t matter.

The mom-shamer will go their way, and you yours. Sure, your pride is hurt and you’ll tell someone about that mean person at the store. You’ll question why God gpexels-photo-532389ave you these children when you’re doing such a “terrible job” raising them. But then your baby, the very one who seemed possessed in the store, will crawl on your lap and look at you with big eyes and say, “I love you, mommy”. And you’ll feel sorry for that mom-shamer because she only saw the worst instead of what was really there: true, pure, unconditional love.

Mom-shaming is no different than bullying. People are so quick to judge other moms when we should be celebrating moms. This mom gig is hard! We shine sometimes and just plain stink other times. But isn’t that life in general? I challenge you to “Mom-celebrate”! When you see a mom doing great, show kindness and pray for them. When you see a mom struggling, offer to help, show kindness, and pray for them. It’s really very simple. Choose kindness. Show love. Mom-celebrate!




And he gives grace generously. As the Scriptures say, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” James 4:6 (NLT)

So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most. Hebrews 4:16 (NLT)

Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you. Ephesians 4:32 (NLT)




“With Every Act of Love” by, Jason Gray YouTube

“With Every Act of Love” by, Jason Gray Spotify




You Can

How many times do we say “I can’t…” in a day? A week? A year? How many opportunities, or chances do we miss by giving up before we even begin? There are a few reasons why one might think they can’t do something. And I’m going to discredit these reasons, effectively giving us no excuses. Are you ready for the truth?

Reason #3 why we say “I can’t”:


We’re scared. This is arguably the most common reason we tell ourselves that we can’t do something. Now, we don’t want to admit that we’re scared, because hey! We have our pride, right? If we don’t take chances, we’ll never fail. If we never fail, our egos are never bruised. If we keep things simple, we always look good. We decide to settle for careers that don’t challenge us. We convince ourselves that while we see a need, we aren’t the right “fit” to fill that need. We often leave the difficult tasks to others who are more “qualified” than we are. Why do we do this? Why do we let fear and pride hold us back? Easy. We do this because we are thinking about tackling these obstacles with only our strength and abilities.

As Christian women, we have access to the power of the creator. Read that again. Let that sink in. We have access to His power! We are all likely familiar with Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength”. All things. Ladies, let me tell you something that I hope changes the way you look at your life. You have a talent, you have a passion, and it is not by accident. God has blessed every single one of us with talents in different areas because He wants to use us. And the passion! If you think you are not a passionate person, you need to dig deeper. God made us all passionate about something. If you ask God where and how He wants you to serve, He will show you. Once you find your place in serving, you will feel a passion rise inside of you that you didn’t know existed.

When we start undertaking our dreams, talents, passions, obstacles, ministries, motherhood, marriage using His power instead of ours, there is nothing that we can’t do.

Reason #2 why we say “I can’t”:


We may not have the support of our spouse and/or family members. This is such a difficult place to be. If you are in this position, it’s likely you’ve dreamed of something for a long time. You may have even begun the journey to reach your goals, achieve that dream, or serve God the way you feel led. But despite your efforts, you give up because it’s hurting your relationship. You finally say, “I can’t sacrifice my marriage for this.” And you’re right. If you actively seek your goals when your spouse doesn’t support them, either your goal or the relationship will fail.

But don’t give up! There is another option. If we take a moment to really examine the situation, we will see that this is a job for God, not us! We as human beings do not have the power to change hearts. But it just so happens that God specializes in that very thing.

I challenge you to change your focus. Pray for your spouse instead of praying for yourself and your dream/goal. Pray for your spouse to seek God and His plan. Have an honest and open conversation with your spouse about why you feel led to do whatever it is you want to do and then pray about it together. Finally, speak to your pastor and/or a Christian counselor. All of these actions will give God opportunities to work in your marriage/relationship in multiple ways. Trust me when I say if God wants this to happen, He will make a way.

Reason #1 why we say, “I can’t”:


We’re lazy. Ouch. The truth hurts, huh? We have grown complacent in our lives. We live happily in our comfort zone and the thought of all the work we’d have to do is not appealing. We justify these thoughts by telling ourselves “I’m too busy” or “I’m too old” or “Someone else will do it”. But if God is calling you to do something, no excuse will work. This happens to be something I have personal experience in…

I sang on the worship team for nine years at a church. Singing is a true passion of mine, and singing for God – there really are no words to describe how fulfilling it is. However, due to unfortunate circumstances, we left that church feeling hurt and betrayed. I wallowed in self-pity for two years by choosing to sleep in on Sundays. I didn’t make any effort to further my relationship with God, and I didn’t serve.

My best friend belongs to a local church and she invited me to go every time we talked. Every. Time. It was so annoying! LOL. She even tried to bribe me with chocolate! (I didn’t mind that so much.) God had been telling me to go. But, alas, I am a stubborn daughter. I came up with excuse after excuse, continued to tell God and my bestie “no” over and over. But my time to say “no” ran out.

At a local skating rink for my bestie’s son’s birthday party, she introduced me to someone. She said, “Kristy, this is Pastor Brett. Brett, Kristy wants to sing on the worship team.” Then she turned around and walked away while I stood there gaping like a fish out of water. I auditioned for the worship team the following week, and joined the church immediately after. If you ask my friend, she’d tell you that God called her to get me to church. You see, God wasn’t only telling me to go, He was working on the people in my life too. He set the stage, opened the door, and almost literally pushed me through it.

We can come up with hundreds of reasons why we “can’t” do what God is calling us to do. We’re wives, mothers, single mothers, employees, employers, homemakers, homeschoolers, dance/football/baseball/basketball/soccer/wrestling moms, PTA volunteers, caretakers of our parents, sounding boards for siblings, Aunts, Grandmothers, friends, the glue that holds our families together. But without God, we are nothing.

He made us for a purpose.  He made you exactly the way He wanted you. He wove your talent into you. He placed your dreams and passion in your soul. I’m here to tell you that you can’t ignore it. If you don’t do what you were put on this earth to do, you will forever feel incomplete and unsatisfied. Every single reason you “can’t”, every excuse can be reversed and fixed by God. Seek His will in your life and you will live a life full of purpose and passion. Trust me, YOU CAN!


Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.   Ephesians 3:20 (NLT)

…for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.  Philippians 2:13 (NIV)

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.  Romans 8:28 (NIV)


“Dream For You” by, Casting Crowns (YouTube)

“Dream For You” by, Casting Crowns (Spotify)

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Dayne Topkin on Unsplash

Kyle Broad on Unsplash

Ryan Holloway on Unsplash

In The Middle Of The Storm

As followers of Christ, we are taught to bring our requests to God. When we want that raise or a new job, when we really need to sell the house so we can buy the new one with the extra bathroom, or when we just really would like to get a full night sleep without the baby crying, we pray. We pray for what we need, what we want, and for our parents’ health. We expect God to hear our prayers. We expect God to be faithful. We expect God to do what we want, when we want it. This is where we often run into trouble.

We forget that God is in control. We forget that God has a master plan. He doesn’t have a plan A, B, and so on. No, He has one plan. THE plan. This plan cannot fail. No matter how many things go wrong or seem impossible, God is already hundreds of steps ahead.

We humans have a habit of looking at our circumstances, and basing our opinions, goals, and conclusions on them. We forget that God’s view is by far superior to ours. It’s like comparing a basement window with a view of the brick building two feet away to the view of Hawaii on top of a volcano. There is no comparison. He sees you and your circumstances, but He also sees your future. He is intimately familiar with the storm you’re in, and how it will shape you and make you ready for the brighter days ahead. We merely see the storm.

We get angry with God. We say “What did I do to deserve this?” and “He must really be mad at me.” Nowhere in the bible does it say that once we believe, life is perfect. No, life can’t be perfect because we live in a world full of imperfect people. We all know this, and yet, we expect life to be easy. Why? Where did that expectation come from? Some might say “Well, if He really loves me, then why would He allow this to happen?” I can’t answer that question for you. I can only say that nowhere in the entire world, universe, or beyond will you find someone who loves you more than the way God loves you.

God loves you so much that you are a part of His master plan. Yes, you! You play a leading role. And for whatever reason, you have to go through this storm and trust that He has a very good reason for it. It takes absolute trust in Him to have that outlook. But when you do, it changes your frame of mind. You look at these circumstances differently than you did before. Your expectations change. You realize that God did not forsake you, He’s merely molding you to be the person you need to be for His plan.

It hurts. Trust me, I know. I’m in the middle of a massive storm right now. It’s the most difficult time I’ve ever lived through. But we’re not meant to go through this alone. God gave us arms to hug each other, to comfort one another. God gave us tongues to speak His truth to someone who is hurting. God gave us other women who have been though the same storm you’re in now to speak about their journey and encourage us. God gave us a love letter with all the secrets to life – we only have to read it. God gave us a savior so we will never be apart from Him.

Sometimes we forget how truly blessed we are. We’re blinded by the dark clouds, the long journey, and the pain. But if we’re brutally honest, we can admit that we are extremely blessed. We can see that God hasn’t forgotten us, nor does He hate us.

One day we will look back at this moment in our lives. We will say things like “the only reason I made it through that time was because of God’s strength, God’s love, and the people God placed in my life.” You may even find yourself looking into the tearful eyes of a woman who is in the middle of a storm similar to the one that you endured and you will thank God for the storm that shaped you into the woman you became. You will thank Him for the opportunity to share your experience and His love. One day we will more than understand. We will share His view.



“For I know the plans I have for you”, declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not harm, plans to give you hope and a future.”     Jeremiah 29:11

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”  2 Corinthians 12:9

But the Lord stood with me and gave me strength.  2 Timothy 4:17

piano“Praise You In This Storm” YouTube

“Praise You In This Storm” Spotify