About Teresa

Hello! I am wife to a pastor and mom to three grown children. Author of #BecomingAPeacefulMom and a speaker. Connect with me at www.celebratethefamily.org!

Finding Rhythm

“When our children were very young, I spent too many hours fretting that I didn’t have balance in my life. My time—which no longer felt like my time—was no where near evenly distributed among categories like exercise, time with friends, time for myself, Bible study, time with my husband, and rest. Several of those categories were hit or miss weekly.

After yet another day of stressing over this, I put pursuit of balance on the shelf and decided to pursue a daily rhythm.

Rhythm is pattern and flow. It’s not the same thing as a schedule, but schedule fits into our rhythm. The beauty of rhythm is that it can be as unique as we individually are. We can identify a rhythm design that works for us and works for our home that settles peace in our heart—even when the day is crazy busy or discouragingly hard.

Our rhythm can have variety or change temporarily. For instance, our rhythm on the weekend is likely different from the rhythm of a school day, or the rhythm of our day off is different from the days we work. Circumstances can affect rhythm. When we move to a new city, our rhythm is altered until we are settled. A job change, a new extracurricular activity for a child, or a new special needs circumstance for a child or aging parent makes modifications necessary.

A healthy rhythm reflects attention to our sense of personal order, how we plan, how we communicate, flexibility, and enjoying our life.

Our day is unpredictable to us, never to God. No matter what comes, his peace can anchor us. How we live the day affects our antennae for God’s peace. Cultivating rhythm—pattern and flow—helps.”

This is the beginning of a chapter in Becoming A Peaceful Mom. Go HERE to read more.

Do you or does someone you know crave peace? Read Becoming A Peaceful Mom and learn to partner with God. Grow stronger and more confident and begin to see yourself the way God sees you—as a woman, as a mom and as his child.

When Circumstances Overwhelm Us

I have friends in Houston, Texas, and surrounding towns—you may also—who are experiencing the rains and winds of Hurricane Harvey’s lingering effects. For all that can be predicted, they know they have to wait and then live through what actually comes. And that’s hard. At the same time, all other challenging matters of life haven’t evaporated. For the moment, they may shrink in comparison, but they’re still there.

You know what I mean. A new trial develops, yet the other hard things remain, too. We press on, hanging in there, until sometimes we wear down, fall apart, cry, pray, vent, and try our best to keep praying—to keep holding on to the One who holds us and holds all creation.

“I have been pouring out my soul before the LORD . . . speaking out of my great anxiety and vexation.” (1 Samuel 1.15b-16)

All week I’ve been planted in this passage in 1 Samuel 1.1-20, where God unfolds how Hannah perseveres in faith and how he attends her heart through her circumstances. Hannah prays for years to conceive a child, plus her husband’s other wife regularly provokes her that she’s born multiple children. One big trial compounded by another—Can you relate?

Hannah is “deeply distressed and prayed to the LORD and wept bitterly.” (v.10)

Anxiety, worry, pain, and frustration accompany Hannah’s heart. Yet, the Companion whose company she steadfastly chooses is her LORD. She takes her experiences and feelings to God, not holding back. She unloads every aspect of her burden, letting tears wash her empty.

This is intimacy with God. Raw and honest, yet worshipful. God is Hannah’s heavenly Father and Lord.

“Then the woman went her way and ate, and her face was no longer sad.” (v.18b)

Her face was no longer sad. She went “her way,” back to the circumstances that currently define her life. Yet, she went changed—changed by her encounter with the living God. Changed by his love that filled all places in her heart when she emptied all that burdened her. She “went” with God, with His peace that passes all understanding.

Hannah’s no-longer-sad face reflects a heart that has overcome the overwhelm of circumstances in the power of God’s love. She trusts God—that He sees, listens, holds, and loves her through all circumstance.

Dear God,
Thank you for sharing a segment of Hannah’s life and relationship with us. Help us seek to know you more as our Father and Lord, who loves us immeasurably. Teach and prompt us to steadfastly walk with You through all circumstances. Amen.

Prayer for New Beginnings

Is a new beginning in front of you?

New beginnings occur daily. We start a new job or gain more responsibilities, move in to a new apartment or house, move to a new city, start dating someone or become single again, get married, or have a baby. If you’re a mom, a big part of your heart focuses on each child’s new beginnings—preschool, elementary school, middle school, high school, college, or a new activity, new job, new relationship, or a move.

As you step in to something new, step with God.

“It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.” (Deuteronomy 31.8) Moses said this to Joshua as Joshua prepared to step in to two new beginnings—as the new leader of God’s people and to take them into the Promised Land.

This week you are on my heart to pray for you concerning new beginnings. I thought I might also share a couple of prayers . . .

Dear God, you knew this day was coming. I invite you in to this new beginning. I want and need you to lead me. Prepare me now and every day because only you know what each day holds. Make me and mold me through the good days and hard days. Help me remember to keep talking to you. Help me learn to listen and discern your guidance. Thank you that you love me so much. I love you. Amen.

If you’re a mom, and your child is stepping in to something new, step with God.

Dear God, I give you my child and all my anxieties. I am comforted that you are with her/him every minute. Fill my child with your love and peace. Prompt me to pray, especially when my mind wanders. Help me faithfully disciple my child about your great love and how to depend on you. Help me depend on you and trust you fully. Amen.

It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.