living on pb & j

Ordinary moms living on Prayer, the Bible, and Jesus!


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My Favorite Job

As a child, when I was asked what I wanted to be when I grew-up, I would usually say “I want to be a mommy.”¬† Or a “cash register”–meaning I wanted to be a cashier. ¬† ūüôā

For as long as I can remember, I just wanted to have my own family and my own babies and to take care of them. That desire was always there….but it got repressed.

When I was in high school, I got a piece of mail that advertised¬†adoption.¬† The letter informed me that “age wasn’t a problem”.¬† (Of course, they meant that you could adopt even if you were older). ¬† I took it to mean that I could adopt while I was in high school.¬†¬† Ask my mom–I had it all worked out.¬† I was going to adopt a baby (while I was in high school).

I was soooooo upset at her that she wouldn’t even consider it.

Yes, I was that child.  I loved kids, especially babies.

I was so happy when my first nephew arrived.¬† I couldn’t wait until I had my own.

However, I also realized that children came with a husband and, after a few rocky relationships, I decided I would just be family-less.  Thus, that desire got pushed down farther and farther.

Those growing-up years were really full.¬† I volunteered at the library, was a Candy Stripper at the local hospital and worked as a shampoo girl at a hair salon.¬† I played violin in a county orchestra.¬† I had TONS OF FRIENDS, lots of parties. ¬† I went to college, working as a¬†telemarketer¬†(don’t hold that against me) and as a secretary for that college.¬† I went to Europe three times and spent one summer in Africa.¬† I coordinated¬†a¬†ministry¬†team that¬†traveled¬†around the States.¬† I counseled teenagers at a Christian camp four different summers and then, after graduation, became a school teacher.¬† Really, I had a FULL life.

During that whole time, my parents prayed for me.  They prayed that I would find a friend whom I could love as my future husband.  They prayed for that family I had shut out of my mind and heart.

To cut the story short, my husband and I met, were friends for three years before we knew we were mIMG_3257eant for each other, got married, had baby #1 two years later and then, another two years later, had baby #2.

That was a lot of introduction to say this:  In all my years, in all my jobs, in all the craziness of my life, I have NEVER had such an amazing job.  I LOVE being a mommy.  THIS is my favorite job.

I love that God gave me my two favorite kids to be MY KIDS.

I love the funny conversations my son and I have.

I love the giggles and kisses I get from my daughter.

I love coloring with my son.

I love to tickle his belly.IMG_1440 - Copy

I love stomping in puddles with my boy when it rains.

I love making my daughter giggle.

I love the way my daughter chatters.

I love dressing my daughter up in bows and frills.

I love our walks.

I love the way our family hangs out together.

I love mommy-hood!IMG_3267

I’m sure it helps that I have an absolutely amazing husband who is also called “Daddy”

I don’t know where you are in life, but I want to encourage you to think about something.¬† God created most of us to be help-meets, to be wives and mothers.¬† There is no 2nd place or shame in that.¬† Don’t let the world tell you that.¬† We are our sons’ first love.¬† We are our daughters’ first best-friend. We have the best job out there. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

Is it easy?  No.

Is it the hardest job I’ve ever had?¬† Yes, probably.

Is it sooo worth it? YES!

Let my husband handle the workplace, the drama and stress.  Give me the little fingers and toes.  Give me the giggles and hugs. We are creating the next generation. What a privilege!

Give me mommy-hood because the best bonuses come in X’s and O’s.

Rejoicing,

Joy T.


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Audience of One

Life can be exciting.

Life can be hectic.

Life can be hard.

Life can be AMAZING.

There are people in our lives that make it beautiful.

There are people in our lives that make it hard.

It’s fun to share our lives.

It can be a relief to vent about our lives.

…and with technology it seems like we are on a stage of our own, sharing to all the¬†audiences¬†around.¬† When little Billy takes his first step we run to our phones to share with the world.¬† When we get in a car accident, we vent online: #dumbdriver #notmyfault #crying #justpaiditoff or so on. We live like the world is our¬†audience.

Do we think about just shutting it down, looking up and telling the Lord about Billy’s first step?¬† Do we live like we have an audience of One?

There is One who watches us.  He really does care that Billy took his first step and that my car is no more.  He really does care how I treat people publicly and privately.  He is the audience I should care about.

I don’t think it’s wrong to share our journeys and cares with our friends but, remember, we should be living for an audience of One.

Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever. РI John 2:15-17

Can you think of any other great verses that speak of living for God and Him alone? Leave them in the comments below.

Rejoicing in the Present,

Joy


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The Grumble Box

The Bible clearly states in Philippians 2:14, “Do all things without murmurings and disputings:” and in Philippians 4:11 it states, “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.”

These are 2 great verses that I think every family member should memorize. Grumbling and complaining come so easy. Too easy. Many times we don’t even realize that we are doing it.

When we hear our children complain, we are so quick to point out to them that they need to have a grateful heart and they have  so much to be thankful for but does the conviction set in whenever we catch ourselves?

One idea I ran across was called, “The Grumble Box”. ¬†You could do your own variation of it but basically you make a box and entitle it, “The Grumble Box”. (And one of the verses previously stated would be a great reminder if put on the front of the box as well) Then each member of the family is given an “X’ amount of pennies. (You may have to supply them with more later on in the month if they run out – but hopefully they won’t need anymore:)

Whenever a member is caught “grumbling” they are to donate a penny to the Grumble Box. Normally this challenge ¬†would last for about a month. At the end of the month, it’s quite the eye opener to count all the grumbles (aka: pennies) that made their way into your lives. You tell each person at the beginning of this challenge that what money they have left, they get to keep. (You could choose to use dimes. They would add up more in the end and may be a better incentive to not grumble)

But you can see how this would help all of us to hold our tongue and to play the “Glad Game’ instead! There’s too much to be thankful for to be found complaining!

Love, Jenn