inspiredness TM

Copyright 2013


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Out of the Mouth of My Babe

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“Daddy, can we get in the car and go see Jesus?” said one adorable 2 1/2-year-old little girl, who I am happy to call my own.

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If only we could all be this innocent and really, just not know any better! Wouldn’t it be nice to hop in the car {and not worry about having enough gas!} and drive, knowing that your destination is a glorious place where you will be taken care of and loved absolutely unconditionally? Truth is, lately I have been feeling like this…can I just get out of here and be with my one true Father…only it’s been more out of desperation and sadness than out of happiness and hope.
When things get hard in my little world I shut down. I get angry. I feel like my Father has left me to fend for myself…much like my earthly father had done when I was a child. He always turns things around, maybe not always to my liking and not in my preferred time frame, but He always shows up again and reminds me of His love for me. So why do still doubt, why do I still hesitate to trust?

Oh, to be a 2-year-old again.


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Temper Tantrums

(Originally written May 17, 2012)

This has become the common look in our household and not just from Gracie but from just about every member of the family (myself included).

I’m constantly asking myself what is causing these crazy, emotional outbursts. Am I doing something wrong as a mother? Am I  not paying enough attention or giving the wrong kind of attention? Is it due to exhaustion? Maybe it’s a hunger thing? Just a stage? Is it simply because the kids haven’t mastered certain communication skills? Oh, I could over analyze this subject for days, months, years.

The more I think about it, however, the more I realize that even as an adult I have “temper tantrums.” They may not be the classic throw-yourself-on-the-floor-and-scream tantrums but they are emotional outbursts of another kind. I might pout to myself, I may literally bang my head against the wall when I’ve had enough {as I did the other night}, I may be so hurt and angry that I can’t stop crying hysterically.

Toddlers typically throw tantrums in order to express fear and anger and according to Freud, tantrums may be a subconscious way of the tantrum-thrower to force a punishment on himself as a way to put his sense of guilt to rest (Sigmund Freud, Case Histories II (PFL9) p. 257-58). It’s also suggested that tantrums {at least in toddlers} are a result of a blow to the person’s inflated self-image (H. and I. Goldenberg, Family Therapy (2007) p. 172).

I think all of these postulations are valid and definitely true for me when I throw my “temper tantrums,” what about you? Do you ever feel like the world is out to get you, that things aren’t going your way and they never will? Do you ever feel embarrassed or humiliated by your failure and lack of perfectionism? Have you ever gotten caught doing something vengeful, spiteful to someone because you were hurt by that person? Do you ever wish that someone would just slap your hand for the sins that you’ve committed so you wouldn’t feel so bad about having committed them? I can probably raise my hand to all of these {and more}. These are “perfect” reasons to throw an adult-sized temper tantrum!

So go ahead…pout, scream, shout, bang your head on the wall {literally or figuratively} and as bad as it sounds, yell at God. Give Him your anger, humiliation, sadness, guilt, feelings of worthlessness…give it all to Him! Guess what? He won’t slap you on the hand or put you behind bars or disown you as His beloved son or daughter!

I have loved you with an everlasting love…

Jeremiah 31:3


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Comfort Zones

by theologian Reinhold Niebuhr

Where are your comfort zones? Are they centered in Christ? Or do they center around having all the control to yourself? Do they center around fear, worry and unbelief that the Lord won’t pull through for you?

For most of my life…okay, all of my life…I have known nothing more and nothing less than the comfort zones that hold me in a place of worry, fear, mistrust, unbelief, and total self-control and control of others (and my environment).

The fear of failing has always been one of my central comfort zones. What will people think if they see me fail? I will feel utter humiliation, embarrassment, and I know I’ll be a let-down. I won’t try again because I don’t want to fail again; I don’t want to go through the stomach-wrenching emotions again. Even as I write this my heart is racing and my insides feel like they are about to come out! Why would anyone want to stay in a comfort zone when it’s not a comfort?! Because stepping out of those boundaries means you have to do something uncomfortable, something foreign and something scary. Some people thrive on the adrenaline of doing things like this but others, like myself, can only see the failure in it all and that scares me to my bones.

Something that is helping me to reframe my thoughts on fear and failure is a bit I read from a book titled “99 Things You Wish You Knew Before…Stressing Out!” by Lauren E. Miller. Lauren has spoken at my MOPS group a couple times and has such an inspirational story and a strong, healthy presence.

#47 Failure is a perspective

Did you know failure is simply a label you use when you don’t get certain desirable outcomes in life? When something happens in life that you feel is insufficient or falls short of your expectations or assumptions of how it was supposed to be, from your perception, you often label it as failure; this can lead to “less than” feelings about yourself or others.

If you can watch for this in life and choose to observe yourself making these kinds of choices (to label undesirable outcomes as failure), you give yourself the opportunity to reframe into a positive. Whenever you choose to reframe any negative response into a positive, you open yourself up to creative solutions.

Often you say to yourself, “I can’t do that!” This automatic response instantly aligns yourself with your experience of failure. How about saying, “I just don’t know how to do that yet, but I have the confidence in my ability to learn.” Words are powerful to help you link to your God given strengths and abilities to overcome.

Part of moving through those moments in life that you label as “failure” is to practice the prayer of serenity. “God grant me the grace to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to accept the things I can the wisdom to know the difference.” Any time you resist what is before you, you set yourself up for remaining stuck in life. Yes, you will remain in a place of emotional paralysis each time you do accept the things you cannot change…

Know that whatever label you chose to define a situation in life will directly affect the outcome.