"Your body is the first thing any child of man ever wanted. Therefore dispose yourself to be loved, to be wanted, to be available. Be there for them with a vengeance. Be a gracious, bending woman. Incline your ear, your heart, your hands to them.... To be a Mother is to be the sacrament - the effective symbol - of place. Mothers do not make homes, they are our home." from Bed and Board, Robert Farrar Capon

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Least of My Brethren

" ... Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:  For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in. Naked, and ye clothed me. I was sick, and ye visited me. I was in prison, and ye came unto me.
... Verily I say unto you, In as much as ye have done it unto the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. "
Excerpts from Matthew 25:34-46

I’ve read this many times before, and I’ve also heard it in sermons. Yet, like most things, I don’t think I’ve ever heard it before. I’ve thought of it as maybe the scruffy guy on the street corner or perhaps that person asking for gas money in the supermarket parking lot. Even as the person in our church who I decided was a "weaker member". This may have some truth, but today, right now, we can apply Luther’s idea of vocation and neighbor. Where am I and who am I with?

I am at home, I am with my two children. Oddly enough, one is mostly naked (but that diaper should come off and a new one put on) and both are hungry. One has a runny nose and my husband needs a coffee. Hmm. Fulfilling God’s commands don’t always lead us to far a way places. Sometimes they lead me back to the place I am living in and place value back on the people nearest.
Maybe one translation of the above scripture could be:
"When my knee was skinned, you bandaged it, when I was hungry you fed me, when my clothes were dirty you washed them, when I was thirsty you gave me a bottle."

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Here's To Good Diapering

Not just for puddings and gravies.
Since we're on the subject, here's another tip for the diaper area.
Once in a while your baby's bottom is raw and maybe even bleeding in spots. Ouch. Very painful. Your baby screams if you try to put ointment on it--because it HURTS. It's futile anyway, because no ointment will stick to those raw spots. When one of my babies was in agony like this, someone told me that cornstarch would dry out that raw skin. It's true!  It's painless, and dries up the skin very quickly.  Hint: I got one of these shakers, filled it with cornstarch, and kept it on my changing table. Perfect.
                               To good diapering.  Bottoms Up!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

The Best Diaper Rash Treatment Ever

Works better than every other medicated rash cream I've ever bought for my babies.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Mother, Meet Attila

"Each new generation born is in effect an invasion of civilization by little Barbarians, who must be civilized before it is too late."               Thomas Sowell

For the last time! Where are my cookies?
No wonder child training can feel like a war sometimes.

And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. Galations 6:9

Give her of the fruit of her hands, and let her own works praise her in the gates. Proverbs 31:31

Be strong and of good courage, fear not, nor be afraid: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with you. Deuteronomy 31:6

Monday, May 14, 2012

But what about ME?

The great truth is that we exist for our functions, not our functions for us. God has given me a purpose and a destiny. He’s placed me in a situation. I was not put here to "get myself happy", but to serve in my role – my God given role. It’s somebody else’s job to look after me. The vocations of mother, wife, and daughter take up all of my time. God has provided a husband for me, part of whose vocation it is to care for me. I am here to fulfill the role of mother.

When I’m taking care of the two precious daughters the Lord has entrusted to me I don’t have time to waste thinking about myself. Yes, I fall back into worry plenty of times, but before I get too deep into it there is always another dirty diaper to change or empty belly to feed, driving me, once again, out of my mind into the world of my little neighbors. Through my hands flow God’s gifts to my children.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mother's Day

"The best thing in married life, for the sake of which everything ought to be suffered and done,
is the fact that God gives children and commands us to bring them up to serve Him.
To do this is the noblest and most precious work on earth, because nothing may be done
which pleases God more than saving souls.  If the need were to arise, all of us should be ready to die 
in order to bring a soul to God.  So you see how rich in good works the estate of marriage is.
God lays souls into the lap of married people, souls begotten from their own body, 
on which they may practice all Christian works.  For when they teach their children the Gospel, 
parents are certainly their apostles, bishops, and ministers."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, #2836

A Toast to Mother

(This is also an encouraging read for the day: Celebrating Mother's Day, Luther-style.)

Saturday, May 12, 2012

It may not seem like a gift, but it is.

It's just not cool in the World today to have a lot of children. You are definitely "sinning" against the World's system, the planet, and society by having them, they say. It's downright shameful in their eyes! But this Mother's Day we get the gift of being dead to this world and alive to Christ and alive to his Word and his being the only definer of what is good for his world, his planet, and society.

Not only that, we also get this totally awesome bonus gift:
to be counted worthy to suffer shame for His name.  Hurray!   *Cough*

We, who bow ourselves under the cross of our God given vocations, who deny the "my will be done" lifestyle that the world highly esteems, and who, by God's grace, and within the holy ark of His Church, say "Thy will be done," submitting ourselves to the Word of God, reverencing our husbands, and by the mercies of God presenting our lives as living sacrifices, being willing to bear and love and train children in the fear and admonition of the Lord, will never be loved by this wicked and adulterous generation.  Never! 

We just need to know that, so we are not shocked when it dawns on us that there is no "cool" way to  put this lifestyle, not even to my own sinful flesh - the Biblical chaste obedient meek humble fruitful multiplying surrendering your will lifestyle. But hey, Jesus never said it would be.  If he is (not was) despised, won't we be also, if we are his disciples?

So when we are called names like uncool, fools, demeaned, wreckers of the planet, stupid, unintelligent barefoot and pregnant housewives, or whatever else, we can rejoice, knowing that our master Jesus Christ was called much worse, and we can go away...

 "... rejoicing that [we are] counted worthy to suffer shame for his name."
 Acts 5:41

So, Happy Mother's Day tomorrow!

Sorry, I'm not trying to be morbid.  I'm just saying this world is not our home, especially for Christian mothers these days. God is our home.  And until we are with him in glory, where he has promised we will be, we, like our Lord Jesus, will not be loved for our obedience to God.  This is the cross we bear in this world - the shame and scorn of those to whom the cross is foolishness.

"To speak more clearly of it, you should not take the cross of Christ to mean this or that 
wood on which Christ hung suspended: but the cross of Christ is the shame and the great 
indignity which Christ innocently suffered....
This is why true Christians must be dubbed heretics and evil doers.
They must be condemned, despised, and judged by all, that everybody wipes his feet on them."

What Luther Says  #1045

Here are some flowers for us.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Spring Cleaning Tips

To fix a slow draining sink, take out the drain stopper or plug and remove any large debris.  Then generously  pour baking soda into the drain pipe.  Next pour vinegar into the drain.  Let the chemicals work until you can't hear any fizzing.  Then put the stopper back in, fill the sink and watch it drain quickly.

2. BATH TUBS (The ones that refuse to get clean.)
That's right, spray this wonderful oven cleaner on the tub or shower and let it sit for 10 minutes (USE BLUE CAN).  Then wipe away years of soap scum build up. 

Use  spray foam glass cleaner to shine up your kitchen and laundry room appliances and give them that sparkling new feel.

Thank you to the women who shared these tricks with me (You know who you are ;-).

Feel free to share your spring cleaning tips or tricks in the comments.  We are all looking for better ways to take care of our households.