Monday, January 21, 2013

Seek Ye First Part 2

Do everything as if unto the Lord. (Col 3:23) Make all you can, Save all you can, so you can Give all you can- John Wesley Measure all council against God’s word. Trust in God and have peace that he is taking you to the right place (Proverbs 3:23) Pay bills on time (Prov. 3:27) Pray for your enemies, and don’t waste time on stewing over their wrongdoings. (Prov.25:21) Help people without being a false savior (Prov. 6:1-5) Use words to edify all people, not destroy (Prov. 11:2) Be thankful for the circumstances that keep you humble. Cover my family with words of blessing (Prov. 10:22, 18:21) Love covers all sin(Prov 10:22) Children are more important than things, so when children break things, show them they are what is of value Don’t say anything unless you fully mean it and are prepared to make good on your word (Prov 12:19,22; James 5:12) Show you believe God's promises by speaking them. Operate in victory, not drama (prov 12:25) The longer you wait for a good thing, the sweeter it is (Prov 13:12) Embrace godly correction (Prov. 13:18) Bless your mess. If we are too clean, nothing is being accomplished (Prov 14:4) If you lack anything, rejoice that you have the opportunity to receive something (Matt 5:3-10) Rushing anything accomplishes a less than favorable result. The fear of the Lord is free, and it’s benefits are priceless (Prov 15:16) It is more important to give mercy than to be right. (Prov. 23:9) Pray about everything. (Prov 19:21) Integrity is an excellent inherintance. (Prov. 20:7) It is not our job to get even.(Prov 20:22) A peaceful house starts with a wife that serves and blesses. (Prov. 21:9) A secure house is ensured with a husband that loves wisdom (Prov. 21:16) The most important lessons for children include godly wisdom. (Prov 21:16) Joy from riches is a lie, so balance your time and be content with what you have.(Prov. 23:5) Be disciplined to fall in love with God. (Prov. 23:17)*Don’t encourage invasive media by involving your knowledge of it. some things are better to be ignorant of. (prov 26:17) Discern when to simply be honest and not to pretend to agree just to avoid conflict. (Prov. 27:6; 28:24)Create an environment of provision (prov. 27:7)Treat everything you have with care. (Prov.27:23,24) Routine will eventually produce blessings. (Prov. 28:20) Confess immediately, and receive mercy (Prov 20:13) Joy is the net that catches souls- Mother Theresa Receive faith and peace so that we can love extravagantly (Gal 5:6) Laughter melts away fear Even in a wicked world, good deeds make a difference. (Prov. 29:16) Sometimes our eyes lie. Trust God over what we see. ( Hebrews 11:7) A house will run more smoothly when we know about God. (Prov 29:18) We should not act in fear of man. (Prov 29:25)Act with a sound mind, full of power and love.(2 Timothy 1:7) The only one trustworthy of our future is God. Our work alone is never good enough. A homemaker never has enough energy, time, money, knowledge, or grace in her own power. However, she must continue to work toward the goal- working hard, managing well, shopping smart, and caring for all while humbly acknowledging the fear of the Lord. (Prov. 31) Everyday should include gratitude, the filling of the Holy Spirit, a release of worries through prayer, and worship in words and deeds. Jesus paid for our transgressions, so we don’t need to punish ourselves. Live in grace. (Hebrews 4) Live life as a victorious adventure. (1 Cor. 2:9) We are here to serve, not to be served. (Luke 9:23) Don’t be easily offended. (Matt 11:16) Giving grace pours beauty on your offender (1 Peter 3:8) People are people- no matter the age or comprehension level. Practice the gifts and interests that God has given you with hope. They are yours for a purpose. Everything fades when we look to Jesus.(prov 3:27) Concentrate on your own responsibilities, not on exposing another’s lack of responsibility. Don’t tattle. (Mica 3:8, James 2:13) When you know God tells you to do something, it may be hard. However, it is easier to do it than to ignore it. (Prov. 3:27) Nothing is impossible.(Mark 10:27)The gift of nature is avaliable everywhere: The trees, the sky, the animals. All it costs is time to appreciate it. There is beauty to be found in every person. Paradise is found by losing yourself. Lose yourself by praising God. Trust God like a child. (Ephesians 5:1) The door to rest is always open. (Hebrews 4) If you offer to do something, don’t turn around and complain about it. (1 Peter 4:9) When life is hard, rejoice that it will get better. (Psalm 30:5) Love relentlessly believes in others. (1 Corinthians 13) If you give, you will not want. My kingdom is far greater than my selfish desires. (John 18:36) There is no such thing as a bad day. (Psalm 139) Fear is a lie and should be fought, not an option to be considered.(John 8:44)Tell your mountain to move. (Luke 17:6) Every face reflects the likeness of God (Matthew 25:37) Pay your taxes without complaining. (Luke 20:25) Love God, love people. This should be the focus of everything. (Mark 12:30-31) Never deny a child a hug. Believe God is who He says He is. (Psalm 77:14) To see God’s power, shrink your “gods”. (Mark 10:21, 9:42-49)We are blessed with spiritual blessings right now.(Ephesians 1:3) Be content right here and now while expecting gain. (1 Timothy 6) Don’t curse each other. (James 3:10) Let the little things excite you. (Zechariah 4:10) Judge yourself by what you know is right; judge others by the law of mercy.Mom and Dad are different, but as good as one. (Mark 10:7-8) God threw your sins to the bottom of the sea (Micah 7:19, Isaiah 43:25) Children should know their heritage. Start sowing today what you can reap tomorrow. (Gal 6:17)God loves beauty. God is beauty. You were made wonderfully, so don’t complain about your body. (Psalm 139:14) Take care of your body, the temple of the Holy Spirit. (1 Cor. 6:19) You can do whatever God tells you to do, with his help. (Ephesians 2:10) Jesus loves children.(Mark 10:14) Defend the powerless. (James 1:27) Strengthen faith with works. Live by faith and please God. (James 2:25-26) Alter your life so that every aspect defends the poor and needy. Then you will know God. (Jer 22:16) Know all people of history, but only immitate the good. (3rd John 11) Be generous (Act 4: 33-35) Celebrate. Weekly, monthly, yearly, successes, milestones, life. Remember what God has done. (John 14:26)Our enemies have no right to ruin our lives. (Romans 8:28) Care about the livelihood of others. (Lev. 25:23) God joys in stretching our influence, blessing our efforts, and causing people to find favor in his children. Live to exalt God, not ourselves. No matter what, there is a reason to rejoice in the Lord. Living in hope is an exciting life. (1 John 3:22) Want is not necessary when I have hope in Jesus. (Psalm 23:1) My greatest desire is to comprehend how big God is and how small my mountains are. (Eph. 1:18) All things work together for good. (Romans 8:28) Ask God to show us his beauty. (Eph. 1:3) Teach children to honor God in their play, then they will honor God in all things. (Matt 25:14-29) Correct children when they are young. It is easier that way. (Col 3:20) Never stop learning. You’ll never know it all. Teach children to respect by respecting them. (Mark 10:14) Teach children to respect by expecting obedience. (Col. 3:20) Share (Hebrews 13:16) Care (Phil 2:4) Heap grace on children. (2 Thessalonians 5: 15) Family is very precious, and worth fighting for. Making a difference for Christ means loving the unlovable. (Matt 5:46) Make the supernatural normal. God likes order with spontaneity mixed in. Ask God because his ways are better. (Isaiah 55:8-9) Don’t glory in your misery. Only in God’s victory. (Isaiah 58) God wants to use you in his victories. (Isaiah 58) Live to win the race. (2 Timothy 4:7)

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Seek Ye First

As I compile the list of things to do and habits to change, another list quickly fills up the lines of the notebook page: needs and wants. It can be overwhelming, depressing, and is one reason why I have procrastinated thus far. I don't want to be obsessed with what I don't have, so I ignore it.

Now I must stand before my oven and do something about the fact that it will no longer broil, and face the fact that my 20+ year old washing machine only gives me hot water during the wash cycle, and takes an hour to fill the rinse. I'm (mostly) a stay at home mom, I have a budget that does not include a new turquoise vintage-style refrigerator (that I would love).

Therefore, do not worry, saying, "What shall we eat?" or "What shall we wear?" (or "How will I cook and clean the clothes?") For after these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all of these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.
Matthew 6:31-33
In the big picture, it seems so vain to accumulate the perfect appliances that will eventually break in order to make my life easier, but we do need them. I could stop giving so we could save more, or I could work more and spend less time with my children. But I'm trusting God, and his economy does not work that way. Today, I think it is a good project to make my needs and wants list, and then make a list of what seeking God's kingdom looks like in this home. Possibly in giving, valuing family, and loving people. The latter will then be used as a guideline for plans, and the former will be handed over for God to supply.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Deep Breaths, No Excuses

In preparation for my challenge to make this house as pleasant as possible, a refuge to those that enter, and a place where my family's needs are met, God has shown me a handful of things today.

1) His promises are in place, and there is no law against the fruit of the spirit. In that is where His will is fulfilled. Anything else needs to be nipped in the bud and done away with. When fears creep in, that is actually a wedge between myself and God, blocking my view of His perfect peace. Pride erases my need for Him, until I fall and can't get up. So on, so forth. But in Him, dreams flourish and joy runs over. Even in scary times, because my hope is in God alone. Otherwise, why would I even pretend to be a person of faith? If this is truth, it is. Selah.

2) My past failures will not define my future. I am a new creature, God's mercies are new every morning. Therefore, clutter can be defeated, order will be restored. My favorite stories come from strengths that come from fears. One example of mine is a very distinct thought of my past. "I could never teach. I would not know how to explain anything because I cannot think like other people." Ironically, this is one thing I can say with confidence that I am good at. My brain is jumping around, looking for a multi-angled approach to teach one simple thing, because if I can break it down and explain it in a simplistic yet relative approach, one step at a time, there is no telling where this lesson will take us. That just makes my heart beat a little faster. I love my job, and no one could have guessed that I was to be called as a teacher.

3) There is never one way to do a thing. God can take 100 different people, with 200 different talents, and make them all a success in their own way. While some people are inspirations to me, they should not be a measuring stick to grade my performance. This is what is called art, and that is why I call it the "art of homemaking". Everyone will do it a little different, and that is a beautiful thing.

From Nate Saint: On a Wing and a Prayer by Janet and Geoff Benge-
As strict as his parents may have seemed, in other ways they weren't strict at all. A lot of things that bothered most mothers didn't worry Mrs. Saint one bit. Meals at the house were served at all hours of the day and night, whenever enough of the children gathered to make it worth setting the table.....nor did they care if the children didn't keep their rooms tidy or had holes in their pants, or if they were late for school.....
Since Mr. Saint was rather forgetful, Nate's mother took care of most of the practical matters around the house. She was organized but, to most people, in a different way.
Because her father, Josiah K. Proctor, was an inventor, Mrs. Saint thought it was important to let the children experiment....Despite being raised in a wealthy home, Mrs. Saint knew that having ideas and trying new things were more important than having lots of money. It was something she never forgot when she had her own children.
Indeed, more often than not, Mrs Saint helped the children carry out their wild schemes. When the children came to her with an idea, instead of saying no, she would say why not?
Behind the studio where his father did his glass work was the Saint family's private, double-track roller coaster. The huge wooden structure had curves to swoop around and drops to plunge down. Mr. Saint had built it in his spare time with the boys. A few stray nails had gone through the roof of the house and caused leaks, but no one worried too much about that. Nate's parents thought it was more important for the children to have fun and to learn something than to keep everything in perfect condition.

Mom called me after reading this and told me that Mrs. Saint reminded her of me. That made me smile, since Nate and Rachael Saint were a few of the people responsible for influencing the savage ways of the Aucas in Ecuador. Mrs. Saint did good.

4) It may seem like you are not moving forward, neither will you ever again move forward, but only God knows the end of a matter. Expect that it will get better every day, and even if it does not, expect it again the next. My Bible study today told the story of Jim Cymbala, who unexpectedly became the pastor of a tiny church called the Brooklyn Tabernacle. It shrunk even more (less than 20) when he took the job, and nothing he did seemed to make a difference- until the day it changed. And it did indeed change.

In a nutshell; all excuses aside.

Lesson #2 The victory is already won. In order to experience it, just don't let anything convince you otherwise.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Preparations of the Heart

I feel the need to qualify every move I make. Why is that? Anyway, I'm methodical. I've been chewing over how to be a good homemaker for the last ten years. I've tried things here and there, and mustered up all kinds of discipline that lasts a day (maybe).

So I thought it's the beginning of a new year, good place to do something. Food is the best place to start. We need to eat and being a dietitian, it's always in an open file in my mind. I was going to not eat out, and to make food from scratch all month. Good plan.

Until we celebrated at the Great Wolf Lodge on New Year's day and they would not let us bring in food. Nachos and soft pretzels for lunch. Then, Sook ordered pizza for the kids while I was at work. After a few road trips resulting in hungry kids mid-way (funny thing about Emporia's city limits), I threw up my hands. God tapped me on the shoulder and said, "I didn't ordain this."

Oops, I did  it again. That is why my plans fail. I hear one little bit of vision and start running. Just like my kids do. (It drives me crazy!)

Oh, no. I'm not even ready to jump into the work part. First, I must master the preparations. The prioritizing, scheduling, meditating, and values identification. That is a little scary. I mean, it's past noon and I am still in my pajamas because I wanted my heart ready to face the day. I've prayed and read and did a few exercises, and I'm just now thinking I might be able to handle what is ahead of me. Of course, this won't (can't) happen every day, but today it can. I was so worried what Sook would say when I came upstairs and saw the disaster as a result of my preparations. Nothing. Just a big smile and kiss while I sat, reading on the couch.

I'm listening now, God.

The preparations of the heart belong to man,
But the answer of the tongue is from the Lord.
All the ways of man are pure in his own eyes,
But the Lord weighs the spirits.
Commit your works to the Lord,
And your thoughts will be established
When a man's ways please the Lord,
He makes even his enemies be at peace with him.
Better is a little with righteousness,
Than vast revenues without justice.
A man's heart plans his way,
But the Lord directs his steps.
How much better to get wisdom than gold!
And to get understanding is better than silver.
Pride goes before destruction,
And a haughty spirit before a fall.
Better to be of a humble spirit with the lowly,
Then to divide the spoil with the proud.
He who heeds the word wisely will find good,
And whoever trusts in the Lord, happy is he.
The wise in heart will be called prudent,
And the sweetness of the lips increase learning.
Understanding is a wellspring of the life to him who has it.
But the correction of fools is folly.
The heart of the wise teaches his mouth,
And adds learning to his lips.
Pleasant words are like honeycomb,
Sweetness to the soul and health to the bones.
There is a way that seems right to a man,
But its end is the way of death.
From Proverbs 16
I am finding that our culture has worked in many preparations of man and called it righteousness. Oh God, show me your righteousness so my works are not done in vain.
Lesson #1: Follow God's leading. His thoughts are bigger and better, His vantage point broader, and His powers are endless.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

The Art of Home Making

My husband changed his Facebook name to Xayachak. Apparently, that is the correct way to spell our last name. Ever since we returned from visiting his homeland, things have not quite been the same. I am pretty sure he is having a mid-life crisis.

I love it. Mostly because I am having a crisis, too. I don't know if it is because I have entered mid-life, however, since I have had my share of crisis throughout life.

So there, we are both a little crazy right now. His is simply a little more contained.

Each day, I look at my children and panic because they are huge, and I don't even remember anything about the first five years of toddlerhood, except that it was insanely hard and I have this incredible pull towards the thought of needing to do it all over again. 

But I also want to travel the world with my current children and share our love for culture, art, music, and people. You can't do that with three or four toddlers.

Maybe we could move to a third world country and I could hold babies all day long and play and teach and watch them grow.

But then again, I 'd love to learn how to start a community garden, preferably near my parent's house, where I can glean some farmer's wisdom and live in wide-open spaces. Or maybe just hide out in the middle of nowhere, free to be as whatever as I want.

I want to write, I want to homeschool effectively. I want my children to always know I have time for them. I want to give food to the hungry and entertain friends. I want a greenhouse and a secret garden. I want to do good, to live a life that will impact something.

But quite frankly, today I have a hard time keeping my dining room table clean. And I won't even tell you how badly I need to wash my sheets.

I'm tired, broke, and sometimes broken. I'm scared. Scared on one hand to put myself out there and face failure, and scared on the other that I will die letting fear minimize my purpose. I'm so confused. Has God given me a dream but said "wait", or did he say "go" and I missed the entry date, or maybe I've just lived selfishly and discontented, missing the whole point?

Because this very present position is not one I've chosen.

And that leaves me with.... nothing. Even though I could give a list of thanksgivings, something is void.

Through many conversations with God, I have decided to be disciplined to be content and to be the best darn homemaker of this home that I loathe (but would have a very hard time leaving). So I, Wendi Xayachak, plan to learn the art of homemaking this year. And I will write about it from time to time if I am not too exhausted from the actual work. Pray for me.

Pray that I don't feel like a failure, having a nine year old and still clueless about how to keep socks together. Pray that I will have insight because I am no longer college age and cannot research all night. Pray that I will be teachable, and maybe will find something worthy of passing along. I've been talking about this for some time, and I've procrastinated long enough.

And maybe when I've conquered being content and caring for what I have, then I can move on and adopt triplets- or move to India. I want to be ready for whatever God has written for me.

Saturday, January 12, 2013


Our new night time routine:

"Mommy, I wannnna.....hmmm...(puts his finger up to his chin, rolls his eyes back, and thinks for a second)...a little kiss."

very soft peck.

"Now I wanna....BIG kiss!" (holds his arms out wide)


"Mommy! I wanna little hug"

so gently, barely touching

"Now a BIG hug!"

huge squeeze

I love teaching opposites.