Combatting Selfishness... with a Free Printable to Help :)

 Maybe a month or two ago, I became very frustrated with the way my girls were behaving on a daily basis at home.  It felt like as a family we had unknowingly slipped into a rut of apathy, problem avoidance, and prevailing SELFISHNESS.  yuck.  My girls were always fighting... complaining that someone else wasn't doing what they wanted.... complaining that they didn't get to do something they wanted.... complaining that they had to do something they didn't want to do... on and on and on it went.   It was time to address these heart issues that some how I had allowed to take over our home!

Selfishness along with a very bad attitude was the main  problem... I determined that loving each other and obeying me without complaining were the prevailing issues.

I discipline for defiant disobedience or sinful behavior... (for more about disciplining, the way the Bible intended it to be used,  I would recommend reading "Shepherding a Child's Heart", by Tedd Tripp and "Don't Make Me Count to Three" by Ginger  Plowman )... but I felt like I needed a dual approach on this ugly matter.  So I decided to try a reward system.

I made two kinds of tickets, one for each of the issues at hand: loving each other and obeying mom and dad...  The ticket would allow them to earn points that they could redeem for sweet treats every Friday.  (They don't get a lot of sugary treats, so this was very special for them.... I also didn't want the reward to be a material item/ toy because they struggle enough with materialism as it is!!)

So I sat down with the girls and we had a talk... about the troubles we'd been having... about what the Bible says about loving each other and about obeying our parents.... and about what we were going to try to do to correct the problem and start behaving in a way that pleases God!

Basically, I explained that I would be watching for times when I saw one of them do something loving (instead of selfish) for a sibling.  I would also watch for an especially obedient and respectful attitude towards their father and me.   I was careful to explain also, that this wasn't about performing or doing contrived acts in order to earn something... rather the reward would be for a genuine display of love or obedience that flowed from the heart.


Fast forward a month or so...  and it's going pretty well.  It hasn't been magical by any means, but we are going in the right direction!  They tend to receive more obedience tickets than love tickets :(  Which to me reveals so much about their little hearts.  I know selfishness is a central aspect of immature little hearts, but I just hate it!  I want them to have genuine compassion for one another...

But we will keep working, and keep memorizing our little verses that serve as excellent reminders of how Christ wants us to act... and this does help.  

"Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you."  Ephesians 4:32

"Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves." Romans 12:10

"A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another." John 13:34-35

"Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise—  “so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”  Ephesians 6:1-3

What do you do to encourage heart change in your children?  ..... to combat selfishness?
I'd love to hear :)

Meanwhile, if you think it might be useful in your home, please download our tickets and give it a try!  Blessings to you as you strive to raise your little ones up in God's truth :)


****As always...File and finished product for personal use only... not for resale or profit of any kind.


Rest... on pretty sheets.

Sunday is a day of rest...

Lately I've been trying really hard to use it for that. 
I tend to be the type of person that is always chipping away at the to-do list, desperately trying to get to the end of it :)  In the past I've made the mistake of using Sunday afternoons to "catch-up", but it was causing me to burn out.  ...then it hit me... ah, yes, this day has been given to us for that very reason! ... to provide rest and allow time to focus on our first love without distractions. 

Now, I take a nap every Sunday afternoon.  My sweet husband, accommodates this even though he is always involved in the Sunday morning worship service at our church.  He knows I need it... he is so sweet :)

So I shut the door... it's quiet... and I rest. 

I bought "new" sheets awhile ago... they are lovely vintage ones that appear to have never been used!  oh, the joy :) 

So I lay in bed... in my calming quiet room, on my pretty sheets... and I thank God for a day of rest.  I ask him to renew my body, give me strength for the week ahead.  I thank him for that husband that takes care of me, and I thank him for those kids that I occasionally need to escape from :) 

It's easy to fall asleep... and when I wake I'm rested, better prepared to face the week ahead.

"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest."  Matthew 11:28

Blessings on your week ahead :)

PRINTABLE Spring Note Cards and Place Cards

As we celebrate Spring and especially Easter this weekend, I have a little gift for you :)

Thought you might enjoy some cheery note cards... to wish others a blessed and joyful Easter... or spring!  (these cards are standard 4 bar size... if you want to find some pretty envelopes to put them in...)
And some little place cards... perhaps for the Easter table!  (or could be cute for journaling/ scrapbooking pages...)

Hope you enjoy...


****As always...File and finished product for personal use only... not for resale or profit of any kind.


****As always...File and finished product for personal use only... not for resale or profit of any kind.



I feel like one of the themes of my life these days is submission.... God keeps calling my attention to it lately.  You see, I'm learning submission one piece of my life at a time.  Five years ago God taught me submission in my marriage, and it has brought me amazing freedom.  Two years ago God taught my husband and me submission with our plans in life on a larger scale... and it has brought us amazing peace.  But today I'm struggling with submission on a daily basis in my home.  How do I lay down my daily life?  How do I give up my control... of my kids, of my schedule, of my work, of my stress?

I was talking to God about it the other day....

"Lord there is so much turmoil in life right now.... so much to fight against and resist.  I'm always struggling.  I never feel at ease.  There are always concerns, stresses, trials.  I'm always exhausted, confused, losing ground.  I don't know what else to do but keep fighting.... because if I don't, I'll drown....  I'll drown.  I'll die.....  Oh.  I'm supposed to die?   So is that what this is all about?  Me dying?  Me dying so that I can be raised to life anew in you?  I think I understand... But Lord, I don't know how to stop striving.  I don't know how to just stop kicking and let myself sink down....down into the calm quiet dark of you.  It scares me.  I don't know what's down there.  How do I know that you will bring me back to life in you?  Trust... I know.  But it's so hard.  Help me Lord.  Help me to trust you enough to stop kicking and fighting life.... Teach me to trust you, Lord... help me to submit."

I think I'm beginning to understand what I need to do...  now just to do it.
Definitely something to contemplate... have some more conversations with God about... as I go into this meaningful weekend.

Blessings to you this Easter season,

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