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The Simple Marriage Prayer That Will Put Your Focus On God

"When we pray these words, we are acknowledging that He is in control of us, and we are not in control of each other. It is offering our own will in exchange for God’s will."

Dear ‘Good Parents’: This Is How You Miss the Signs of Sexual Abuse in Your Child

How do good parents miss child sexual abuse? It is simple.

Twins Found Floating Face Down in Backyard Pool. 6-Yr-Old Who Can’t Swim Dives in After Them in Bold Rescue.

“They were completely gone, there was no life left in them. They were blue. They were limp. There was no heartbeat. There was nothing."

My Family DOES Do Santa Claus—And We Do It BIG.

Guess what? So does Doc McStuffins, Sophia the First, Transformers, Disney Princesses and every other thing your kids get excited about. Spoiler: Stuffed animals don’t really come to life and talk when adults aren’t present. Girls with magic necklaces can’t talk to animals. Heavens, our parents grew up watching “Mister Ed” the horse talking to Wilbur. It’s just my generation that panics about the psychology behind damaging our children due to skewed realities. What parent sits down with their child after every [TV] show, video game, movie or stuffed animal gift to explain “how this isn’t reality. It’s fantasy and I want you to know the difference.”

Bottom line, they are kids. They don’t get to be kids for long. They will quit believing in magic and make-believe all too soon. They will struggle with identity, acceptance and body image for MUCH longer than if the Elf on the Shelf really traveled to the North Pole every night. Their struggles will be real, and hard, and painful. Reality will crush them and beat them and wound them and scar them. My children are learning of Noah, Moses, Adam & Eve. These are stories of truth and biblical history. But before that first heartbreak, I cherish the fairy tales too.

Don’t come at me with your “Santa pushes good works” fight either. Good. So do I. If you go in the potty when potty training, you get a piece of poo poo chocolate! When you push your sister down, you get in trouble. If you behave properly in Target, I’m probably gonna give you a Cafe Icee because I’m proud of you. Do you get treats for every good thing you do? Nope. I EXPECT good behavior, but sometimes I’m gracious in my treats and gifts. Sound familiar?

Guess what…scripture teaches us we are judged according to our works too. Now, salvation — THAT is free! But our actions and works while we live on this earth will bring both blessings and consequences (in this life and the next). Read the Bible.

I believe I can be both gospel-centered AND have fun this season of my kids’ lives because that’s what it is — a season. This season will be gone in the blink of an eye. Sure, for 30 days I’m cheering on Santa, but I’m also doing everything I can to glorify God 365 days of the year. I take my kids trick-or-treating and when they lose a tooth I’ll put a dollar under their pillow (maybe I’ll even wear a tutu to get in character). They watch Disney and Power Rangers. They eat Cheetos and bread filled with gluten and they love to sing “Jesus Loves the Little Children” and “Let It Go”! They won’t find a scale in my home to weigh themselves and I’ll give them Tylenol or Thieves essential oil…whatever I can find if it makes them feel better. They get vaccinated but it’s usually at an appointment three months behind. They are hopefully balanced and won’t feel the legalism of pro or anti sides. I try not to stress myself. They are God’s and I am a steward of them. He controls their destiny. But while He entrusted them to me we are gonna bake Christmas cookies, feed Rudolph and read the Christmas Story for as long as they will let me.

Candace McDowell
Candace McDowellhttp://pillarsgirls.wordpress.com
Coffee dependent, aspiring Pinterest follow-through creator, attempted woodworker and Girls' Minister living near Atlanta, Georgia. I love teaching girls how to cultivate a deep relationship with their Creator. I love sharing with others the importance of and how to’s of implementing a Girls’ Ministry. I love to teach, speak and write. I am wife to Chris, mom to Everli Raye, Nora Colette and very soon twin girls Madeline Joann & Caroline Price, but most importantly Beloved to my Savior. Psalm 144:12

The Simple Marriage Prayer That Will Put Your Focus On God

"When we pray these words, we are acknowledging that He is in control of us, and we are not in control of each other. It is offering our own will in exchange for God’s will."

Dear ‘Good Parents’: This Is How You Miss the Signs of Sexual Abuse in Your Child

How do good parents miss child sexual abuse? It is simple.

Twins Found Floating Face Down in Backyard Pool. 6-Yr-Old Who Can’t Swim Dives in After Them in Bold Rescue.

“They were completely gone, there was no life left in them. They were blue. They were limp. There was no heartbeat. There was nothing."