Awesome Kids

This evening my youngest and I were driving down our lane and most of the neighbors were on their lawn mowers neatly manicuring their lawns.  This sparked  a meaningful conversation.  She started with the statement “All of our neighbors have yards like a country club.”  My husband and I do our best with the 5 acres we have to manage, but we feel accomplished if we are able to keep our weeds mowed once a week.  I reminded her that most of our neighbors have already raised their children so they have more time and maybe more finances to invest into their lawns.  Then I told her how I would like a perfect magazine cover worthy yard, but what good would that really do?  Grass and weeds will keep growing.  Yard work is never ending like laundry.  It is never really done.  What our priority is right now is raising our two awesome kids.  She asked “We are awesome?”   “The most awesomeness!!”  I replied.  I went on to explain that the yard work will always be there, but that the time we have to invest in helping them to grow into amazing adults is very short.    These sweet conversations are priceless as is the time with our awesome kids!!!

Luke 12:34 “For where your treasure is there your heart will be also.”

Proverbs 27:23-24 “Be sure you know the condition of your flocks, give careful attention to your herds; for riches do not endure forever, and a crown is not secure for all generations.”    Of course there is a bit different context here, but can be applied to investing into our children instead of material things.   We can’t take our yard to heaven, but we can lead our children to Jesus who is the only way to heaven.

Why are we so Sad?

Our family is currently blessed with having an exchange student from Germany.  We have been looking forward to and preparing for her arrival for several months now.  It has been amazing how helpful everyone in the Lucas household has become since she arrived.  Everyone has been cleaning up after themselves and helping without being asked.  Makes me want to have a house guest all the time actually.  What I am truly seeing play out within my own family is the second command that Jesus gave us.  “Love your neighbor as yourself” Mark 12:31

Another amazing thing is how joyful everyone has been.  There has been no bickering amongst my daughters and we all seem more happy and relaxed.  We are all focused on the comfort and happiness of our guest.

It is amazing how when we love God with all our heart, soul, and strength (Mark12:30) and focus on the needs of others instead of ourselves we become truly joyful.

This has been on my heart since she arrived and our special speaker at our church confirmed this even further today.

Why are we so sad in our country and around the entire world?   Where is our focus most often?  If it is on ourselves we are sad, depressed, and angry.

It is as simple as that.  The more we focus on God, His love, and loving Him with everything we have the more He empowers us to love others sacrificially.   The more we give of ourselves to others expecting nothing in return the greater freedom, peace, and joy we feel.  If you are sad and depressed focus on others.  Find a ministry, a person to show love to without expecting anything for yourself.  Love your family and anyone in your life’s path without any expectations.

The two greatest commands Jesus gave have proven themselves true in my life over and over.  My heart is full as I see what is happening in my family right now.

Mark 10:42-45 “Jesus called them together and said, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them.  Not so with you.  Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant,  and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all.  For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

Jesus taught and showed us how to put God and others first.  The world teaches us to put ourselves first.  God’s way is to put others needs before our own and to put all our trust in Him.  The worlds way leads to sadness God’s way leads to joy!!

Being a Goalie is About Sacrificing for the Save

soccer player

One thing I love about parenthood and watching my children grow is watching them work hard at something.  For this mom’s success scale they do not have to be the best, the top ranking, the prettiest, and the most awarded.  When I see them putting all their heart and energy into their task at hand that is what makes them a success in my book.  When I see them being kind to others and putting a smile on another person’s face that is better than any award that can be obtained.

Our oldest has really deepened her love for the sport of soccer.  She likes all the positions in soccer including goalie.  Very few players are willing to be the goal keeper.  She has worked hard and really has been refining her skills as a keeper this year.

As I watched her play yesterday afternoon and saw the grass and mud stained skin of her knees my heart was warm with love for her.  She has been kicked in the face, has had balls flying at warped speed at her body, she has had a concussion, she gets turf fragments in her eyes, ears, and mouth when she dives for the ball, she gets burns on her skin when playing on turf…but she gives all that she has to make the saves…  the best way to win a game is to prevent the other team from scoring goals.

As we are celebrating Easter I am reminded of the one who made the ultimate sacrifice to save the entire world.  Our sinful nature completely separates us from God who created us and the relationship He planned and desires to have with us. The only cure for our sin is the sacrifice of innocent blood.  God provided that sacrifice by sending His one and only Son, God in the flesh, Emanuel (God with Us), JESUS, to this earth to die for our sins.  There has never been a human being that was purely innocent and sinless other than Jesus Christ.  There is also no one that claimed to be a god that has risen from the dead.  Jesus is the one and only who has proved exactly who He is by fulfilling every promise made.  Our souls and the eternal future of them is completely reliant on this one man, Jesus, and what he did.   He took all of our sin to that cross, actually becoming sin, and was completely separated from God the Father at that moment.  He died.  He rose again on the third day just as he said.  When we believe that Jesus is who He said, ask for forgiveness of our sins, and put our trust in him we are given the gift of eternal life of our soul.  It is all about the sacrifice for the save!!

I picture the goal as the pits of hell, Jesus is in front of it on the cross bleeding and breathing His last. Saying “it is finished”. If we cling to Jesus and the cross we will not fall into that pit.  The only way to win in this life is to prevent going into that goal. Cling to Jesus and direct others to him!

Thank you for the sacrifice to save us Jesus!!!

2 Corinthians 5:21 “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”