Stop believing everything you think.

I had an ah-ha moment this weekend. Not just like, ‘hmmm…. interesting, but more like, ‘That’s me! I do that and I need to stop it, type of ah-ha moment.

They say good things come in three’s and that’s what happened with this message.

I’m often challenged and inspired by the messages at Life Church and this week was no exception. Here’s a short cliff-notes version of Sunday’s message from Pastor Patrick Herzog:

It’s unhealthy to make decisions based on thoughts and decisions that aren’t based on God’s truth. When we wake up in the morning the loudest voice is our feelings. When that feeling controls you, it takes little or no effort to think or act on your feelings. We need to make an effort to focus on the truth. Things can be up and down, but we have a God that is faithful. What he says or promises is more important than what I’m feeling or seeing. I need to remind myself:

When that feeling comes over you, it takes little or no effort to think or act on them. We need to make an effort to focus on the truth. Things can be up-and-down, but we have a God that is faithful. What he says or promises is more important than what I’m feeling or seeing. I need to remind myself:

‘I will not be controlled by the feelings in my soul, instead I will stand firm in the truth and live in his grace.’

Wait, what? I’m not supposed to believe my feelings? Obviously, I get that this isn’t rocket science. I’ve just never stopped to give it much thought. Like he said, it’s easy and takes little to no effort to simply believe your thoughts and act on them. It takes more effort to make a conscious decision to challenge those thoughts and focus on the truth. It’s a decision, a daily decision and a dedication to live a life of truth.

After sharing this with my husband, he said, “Yes! That’s why whenever I feel down’s I listen to You Say by Lauren Daigle. My thought was… say what? So he pulled the song up and we listened to it. It’s one of those songs that you just relate to. In a world where we are all yearning for more personal engagement, usually feel like we are never getting it right or doing enough, we need to remind ourselves of who we really are. We need to remind ourselves to make an effort to focus on the truth.

Now, if all of that didn’t already speak to me… during a meeting at work today, my colleague told me about a book called No Ego by Cy Wakeman. She started to share with me how this Reality Based Leadership speaker teaches others on becoming great by recapturing the emotional waste and upcycling it into results. Seriously… mind-blown. If you can’t tell, ah-ha moments really excite me. I don’t have moments like this often where something so simple, yet effective just really resonates with me. I couldn’t help myself, I immediately started telling her everything else I’d recently learned/heard about this exact thing. This was leadership based, not christian based, but both had to do with focusing on the truth and not allowing your emotions and temporary thoughts to make big decisions for you.

I get that this may not resonate with everyone that reads this, but if it helps even one of you, it was worth it. I found great peace in this and am committed to making a conscious effort to no longer believe everything I think, but rather to focus on what is real and what is the true. I’ll listen to the song mentioned above. I’ll read books, like Cy Wakemans… and I’ll continue to learn and grow so I too can live and be great.

My road to the lake. I’m always happy here.

I did it!

To read from day 1 click here.

What we hoped to be the last day of the program, Carter woke up to a letter of encouragement from dad. He read it out loud and I think it helped him get ready for the day. We drove to Fargo for the 9th time in two weeks with high hopes of graduating from the program. We are ready for a break from the intensity that is eating under the microscope and timers. But more excitedly, ready to move on to eating at home, which was the end goal all along.

IMG_0404The first session of the day was hard. For breakfast he had:

  • A sausage patty
  • a bowl of cereal with milk
  • Apples slices

He ate, but not fast enough. The sessions are timed to increase the feeding speed. He eating more variety, but he over chews and takes him a really long time to eat a whole meal. Given the average school lunch is 15 minutes (too short) we need him to speed up if he’s going to gain nutrition and have a full tummy. Despite not ‘beating his timer’ as we call it, I was so very proud of him because if he wouldn’t have picked apples he would have beat his timer. Fresh apple slices take way more time to chew than mandarin oranges or peaches from a can. So even though he didn’t ‘pass’ we hopped in the elevator and I gave him the biggest high-five and hug because I still cannot believe what he is eating.

IMG_0428

Even though he did well, he couldn’t play iPad. He could read, but he opted for a nap. Lunch time was another big challenge. We grabbed his food from the cafeteria, which still had no air conditioning for the short-term. Apparently the air conditioning was still under repair. It was hot and sticky and the food choices were limited.

He had:

  • Hamburger with ketchup (no gluten free buns available)
  • French Fries
  • Mandarin Oranges
  • Corn

He didn’t make his 30 minute timer this time either. This meal was actually one of the hardest meals. After 30 minutes the rule says I need to leave the table. This was hard because he said,

‘No, Mom don’t leave me!’

I swallowed my emotions and left the room… I watched the remaining 30 minutes (sessions are capped at 60 minutes) from the viewing room. I talked with his team and how to move forward. Since Carter is eating everything, just slowly they feel he is ready to go home since they know we are dedicated to following through with the same rules the program applies. We prepared to discharge, but Carter had one more ‘snack’ session at 4 p.m. He had:

  • Peas
  • A Cheese Stick
  • Grilled Chicken

He beat this timer with no issues. Which was great to end on a successful session. He was so proud. One of his team members said he could have a popsicle if he beat his timer. Since he accomplished this, he played out his secret handshake with one of his favorite team members and remembered his reward, below:

After we left, Carter got to go to Party City to get a new collection of bouncy balls that Mom and Dad promised him after graduating. All of the packages were removed from the rack so he could choose the best one. I think he made a solid choice with his ‘Mega Value 40 Bounce Balls’ which are all mixed in to his bounce ball collection already.

Overall, I couldn’t be more pleased with the outcome of this program. While it was ‘intense’ as the program is appropriately titled, it was worth it. The crying, the gagging, the rocking, it’s less and less every time he eats. Yesterday, we visited the mall and he ate a taco for the first time. Last week we visited Zorbaz and he ate nachos. We went to a family picnic and he ate several different salads and even brisket. There are still a lot of foods he doesn’t love, but what matters is that he is now willing to try them and eats what is put in front of him. There is still some queuing, but he’s doing a great job and we are really proud of him.

This is another unique challenge that he has overcome. He’s learned to teach his sensory processing disorder who’s really in charge. The best part is when he eats something new and says,

 ‘Hey, that’s good! I’ve been missing out!’

Not anymore, little pal. Let’s eat!

xoxo

Kerri


1MinnesotaMom@gmail.com

Our parental identity.

IMG_9453.JPG
Coloring dads face with sidewalk chalk. Why not?

This fathers day I’d like to reflect for a moment on a message that genuinely changed my perspective and approach for parenting.

The overall message spoke about our insecurities as parents:

We are consumed with what others think of us as parents.

So often, as parents, we are so busy rushing our kids to practice, games, and school events just for slight opportunity at an athletic scholarship or so our kids will be ‘happy.’

The message challenged listeners with the following questions:

  • What are we willing to invest in their spiritual life that contributes to their overall happiness into adulthood?
  • Is our approach contributing to a life filled with grace and hope?
  • What drives my belief as a parent?
  • Why have I been given children?
  • How do I make decisions regarding my children?
  • Who and what brings your children fulfillment and purpose?
  • Do you make them look good so you look good?
  • Are you the envy of your community, but in agony in your home?

Instead of constantly defending our insecurities, we instead need to defend our identity as parents with a movable pliable approach.

Instead of making excuses for our children, we need to ask ourselves, ‘Is this really happening? Do I need to change my approach? What can I do? Can this person teach me something so I can become a better parent?

When we parent out of insecurity, we pass that insecurity on to our kids. If we teach our children to live in grace with hope and purpose, we pass that on instead.

Nothing else matters. Not what kind of shoes they have or how many theme parks they’ve visited. They are happy and satisfied when you give them your time and are surrounded by grace and love.

To learn more about this message, visit:  “Whose Kids Are These Anyways?”

My identity as a parent?

IMG_9452
Color my face too, daddy!

This message meant a lot to me as a busy working mom of three little boys. Some might be offended by it. I get it. Parenting is a personal thing and we all want to be great at it. That feeling of being judged as a parent, or even worse the lack of communication where you’re just wondering what someone else is thinking of the oatmeal in your hair or the 3 little boys in your cart chanting songs as you check out in the grocery store. The truth is, we are all doing the best we can.

Parenting is the hardest thing I have ever done. More difficult than college, more difficult than being married, more challenging that any job I’ve ever had. But I do know that seeking a grace filled life makes my job as a parent 100% more enjoyable and meaningful. I’m not perfect, but I’m also not alone in this world. I have the grace and support I need all around me and together with my husband, I’m teaching my little boys to be compassionate people and who focus on what really matters in life.

IMG_8673.JPG

So hears to the dads out there (and moms) who need a little encouragement, a little high-five, a little ‘Go ‘team-parents! You’ve got this.’ You are not alone. If you seek the truth and teach your children to do the same, the insecurities that keep you questioning your identity as a parent and keep you from finding joy in your everyday life will soon fall away.

I don’t know about you, but I love the freedom found in parenting by the standards that we believe are most important and not what our culture or the media tells us should be. I can’t keep up with all of that. I won’t even try to. Instead, I’m going to enjoy our little boys and focus on what really matters.

xoxo

Kerri


1MinnesotaMom@gmail.com

 

%d bloggers like this: