Monday, March 31, 2014


My morning with Lucy as already gone different than many mornings before.  I will be the first to admit, I was way more intentional in my parenting of a toddler with Ivy than I am with Lucy.  Especially with Matt being sick, sometimes I just run Lucy along, quick discipline her behavior and keep running.  Last night our pastor, Byron( gave a great talk on Parenting.  It had so many great reminders.  So…it didn't take long this morning for Lucy to get upset when I told her that it was time to turn off the TV and play with toys (rough life of a four year old).  She went to her room, she got punished and then we had a nice talk.  About Jesus.  About us and our sin.  About how much God loves us and why He sent Jesus.  About how our sin breaks our relationship with God and how He sent someone to fix it.  It's day by day baby steps.  As I sat there last night I realized in a year and a half Lucy is in school.  Away from me for 8 hours a day.  I need to seize the time.

You can get on the church website and listen to his lecture but I know that most people won't do that so I am giving you my notes.  I'm not going to add any explanation because it speaks for itself and you can think it through.  Knowing that this time with my kids goes fast, I am thankful that it is not over yet.


1.  Don't place your faith in your parenting.  (their faith outcome)
2.  Don't place your self worth/identity in how your children behave in public (it's all law/no grace) That makes it about you and not your kids.
3. Don't expect the church to fix, save, to correct your children.
4.  Don't forget that much of your children's behavior is from imitation. (the one most like you is who you tend to struggle with the most)
5. Don't make the mistake of giving your kids the impression that they are a project to fix. (that they are a burden)
6. Assume that your kids are going to struggle.

GOAL OF PARENTING- To introduce your children to Christ (and their need for Christ)
Functional goal- Creating a home where your kids are allowed to struggle with sin.  Where I can correct.  Allow them to grow as people.

You don't have a lot of time with your kids so there needs to be primarily LOVE.
You want your kids to give you their hearts.  You want your kids to come to you for advice.

Advice to parents with toddlers-WIN haha!
DISCIPLINE and STRUCTURE  Kids thrive on that.

You don't want to make your parenting where they think God is an unsatisfied Judge instead of a loving Father.

In spanking.  Tell your kids why they are sinning through scripture.  GRACE!

The biggest mistake in parenting is the absence of grace.  Make a distinction between law and grace.  Rules of the home are an extension from God's law.  They point their need for God and for their protection.  Your kids need to know that they will never truly satisfy the law.  Only Christ has done that.

Most kids think that they will only be accepted if they obey the rules.  True Christian parenting is your unending acceptance of them.  You discipline BECAUSE you love and accept them.

Most of the time,  when a toddler is out of control, the dad has been absent in discipline.  Dad needs to step up.  A father's role is essential.

Most of their kids rebel against their parents because the only get attention they get is when they get chastisement.

Don't punish out of irritation, anger or frustration.

Don't confuse mistakes and disobedience.

Recognize the difference in your children.  Observe…Dads be involved!

Don't give unreasonable demands.

Be unified as parents when it comes to discipline.

Focus most your attention on rules that affect the heart.

1.  (example: lying, deception) "If you tell me the truth, I will respond in grace."
2.(example: tone and volume)  How you talk to each other.  No screaming, no stomped feet.  Reinforcing self control.
3.  You need to submit to the same rules. (as parents)
4. No threats in dicipline.  You have to follow through.
5. You don't only have to have devotions at scheduled moments.
6.  Have a home of joy ( do fun and crazy stuff)
7.  Pay attention to hearts and person more than behavior.
8.  Praise them more than correct them.  Praise them for more than their behavior…who they are, their talents.
9.  Give them a lot of affection.

Friday, March 21, 2014


Psalm 118:28-29 " You are my God, and I will give thanks to you; you are my God; I will extol you.  Oh give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; for His steadfast love endures forever!"

Thank you all so much for your prayers as Matt's biopsy results came in yesterday.  My short answer is that there is still no leukemia in his bone marrow!  Praise the Lord!  We were so excited to hear that.
He starts his new round of chemo on Monday (if his cold goes away, so pray that it goes away!)  This is a six week treatment.  If after the end of the treatment, the next biopsy shows no leukemia, then he goes into the maintenance stage for the next couple of years.  It is much easier on his body.  We were elated to hear this because we didn't know that we could get to maintenance so soon.  There are still a lot of hurdles to cross and we ask for your prayers.  Matt has to be able to endure the full doses of chemo during these next 6 weeks.  That is something that his body has not been able to take in the past and our goal is to keep him out of the hospital.

The Dr. explained to us yesterday that every time he has to lower Matt's doses of chemo treatment, the curability rate goes down so the goal is always to give him the maximum amount of drugs for the maximum amount of time.  He didn't let go of the subject of a bone marrow transplant, saying that if Matt couldn't handle this last part of treatment that we might need to discuss it.  He talked with us about the risks of that and also that our insurance would not be covered there so we would have to leave our Dr. and our treatment facility and go somewhere else.  Of course we don't want to do any of that and we are asking the Lord to see us through these (hopefully) final weeks of intense treatment.

All four of us have lingering colds so we are praying that it leaves us fast.

It was such a blessing to share the news with the girls last night and sit together and thank the Lord for his protection, for the cancer to still be in remission and to pray for the future.  Lucy keeps reminding us that we are team dad and we can do it!  I am so thankful for these girls!

God is so gracious and kind.  It is during our darkest moments that He is the most near.  I love these times with the Lord for that.  I'm so thankful for the way He has provided for us and for the way we have been ministered to.  I keep thinking of the words to the hymn "Great is Thy Faithfulness"……

"Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth, Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide; Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow.  Blessings all mine and ten thousand beside!

Thank you for your continued prayers and for being on #teamdad!