By His Wounds We Are Healed

By His WoundsWho has believed our message and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?

He grew up before him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground.

He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.

He was despised and rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain. Like one from whom people hide their faces he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.

Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted.

But he was pierced for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.

We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.

He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.

By oppression and judgment he was taken away. Yet who of his generation protested?

For he was cut off from the land of the living for the transgression of my people he was punished.

He was assigned a grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death, though he had done no violence, nor was any deceit in his mouth.

Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer, and though the Lord makes his life an offering for sin, he will see his offspring and prolong his days, and the will of the Lord will prosper in his hand.

After he has suffered, he will see the light of life and be satisfied; by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many, and he will bear their iniquities.

Therefore I will give him a portion among the great, and he will divide the spoils with the strong, because he poured out his life unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors.

For he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

-Isaiah 53

Teen Talk with Grace: The Pressures of School

Welcome to Teen Talk with Grace! We are so glad you’re here!

This week we’re talking with Grace about the differences between being a middle school and high school student. Grace talks about homework, hard classes and the pressures students face.

Click HERE to watch “Teen Talk with Grace”

Teen talk with Grace

Plugging Into Her

by Jenifer Metzger

The world today is a “plugged in” world.  At any given moment we are connected with anyone and everyone.

While at the park, I see parents sitting on benches with cellphones in hand.  At the ball field parents sit in the stands on ipads or cellphones.   Teenagers walk down the street with ear buds in ears and cellphones in hand {in my neighborhood teens walk down the street with open laptops?!?}.  Everywhere we go, we are plugged in.

Being connected is great. I love that I can get on Facebook and see how my family and friends are doing. I love that I can see how my best friend’s children are growing even though they live hundreds of miles away.

Being connected, being plugged in, is a good thing.

pd_mom_talking_teen_080303_msBut sometimes we need to unplug from the rest of the world and plug into our child.

She is growing. She is changing.  Her life is hard, not hard in the same sense we have as adults, but her life is hard.  She is faced with many temptations and challenges.  She needs you.  Listen to me please, she needs you.

Unplugging from the rest of the world and plugging into your daughter is so important.  Here are a few ideas to plug into her.

  • Take time out for her, just the two of you.
  • Go to the coffee house.  Teens love coffee these days.  Head to a coffee house for a mocha.
  • Show an interest in the things she loves.  If she loves tennis, play tennis with her.  If she loves cooking, cook with her.
  • Head to the salon together.  She needs a hair cut, you need a hair cut, do it together!
  • Do at home mani/pedis together.

This is a vital time in your daughter’s life and you need to plug into her.  Be intentional about this.

What are ways that you plug into your daughter?

 

The Power of Truth on a Tough Morning

By Natalie Snapp

The morning was off to a rough start.

Her bagel didn’t have enough peanut butter. She didn’t want to wear the outfit we had laid-out the night before. She wanted to stay in bed. Her stomach hurt, then it was her head and then finally, she tried to blame it on a toothache.

She was grasping for an excuse. Desperately searching for a reason to stay home. And I knew it wasn’t because of anything physical. She was perfectly healthy.

Alone in the car without the prying ears of two little brothers, I prod her to speak to me, to tell me what it really is that’s making her want to stay home.

As she reluctantly admits that she doesn’t want to tell me, I gulp heavy air and sigh. My mind wanders to mean girls bullying on the playground. Or maybe she’s being left-out during recess or even being teased for being so painfully shy and soft-spoken.

But what wounds me the most are the words “I don’t want to tell you.”

I just discovered last week that my daughter, who turned eight years old two days ago, is considered a tween. I had no idea. I thought that happened around the age of ten—clearly, I still have so much to learn with this whole parenting gig.

When I read this new information, it was if the pieces of the jigsaw puzzle I had been trying to assemble since last fall were finally coming together. I was beginning to see the big picture. Though she might be entering into the land of the tween, I was determined to keep the lines of communication open.

Five minutes after our conversation, I could still see the sadness on her face. The same face I gazed into during those late night feedings. The same face that became streaked with crocodile tears when I left her at Mom’s Day Out. The same face that revealed her pure joy when the tide crashed into her ankles.

Faces that will forever be imprinted into the depths of my heart.

We reach a stoplight and I pray because that’s all I know to do. There are so many moments like this in my parenting journey, so many times I’m at a loss.

The light turns green and it occurs to me to just speak truth to her. I can see the lies battling in her mind written on her face; I can almost hear their mocking voices reverberating through her thoughts. “No,” I think to myself. “I won’t let you have my daughter.”

After reassuring her that she can trust me and I’m always on her side, I begin to tell her she’s fearfully and wonderfully made. That she’s loved so much she was knit together in my womb. How He knows how many hairs she has on her head and how He says she is His. How she’s beloved.

Though still sullen when we arrive at school, a fleeting smile dances over her face for the briefest of moments. As she exits the car, I pray that God would pour an extra measure of grace over her and comfort the unease I could see festering in her heart. I continue that prayer throughout the day.

Later in the afternoon, she bounds through the door with a smile and a hug. I ask about her day, she grabs a snack. As she sits down at the table, she reveals that she really just didn’t want to go to school because she was tired and she just wanted to stay home. “It’s so unfair that you don’t ever have to get up and do anything you don’t want to do or go anywhere you don’t want to go,” she laments.

I giggle at the irony and reassure her that yes, I still have to do things I don’t want to do pretty much every day and I sometimes have to go places I don’t want to go as well.  “What do you do then?” she asks.

I tell her that I pray and rely on the truth of His word—pretty much what we did in the car. I’m suddenly reminded of the importance of the voices of truth speaking louder than the lies of the enemy.

And once again, I discover that He’s taught me through my child yet again.

So we do the only thing I know to do at the end of a tough day—we bake chocolate chip cookies, vow to go to bed early, and just lean into the cross.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Moms Sound Off

By Erin Bishop

We heard from many of you last week when we launched our “Our Daughters Deserve Better” Campaign.  Like us, you are fed up and you want better for your daughter(s). Never underestimate the power of moms uniting. < Click to Tweet. We can make a difference with our voices, our dollars, and most importantly, our prayers.

To keep the momentum of our campaign going, we’re starting something new called  “Moms Sound Off” where we moms can sound off on the good, the bad, and share our prayer requests.

If you’re like me, you appreciate it when a friend passes on some good information such as, where to get cute and modest tanks for your daughter. And, you also appreciate knowing not to bother with a certain store that “all the girls are shopping at” because their mannequin models only feature double zero sized jeans. My daughter wanted to go into a particular store on a recent quest for jeans. I finally relented. We weren’t there for more than a few minutes before Grace said, “it’s like they’re promoting anorexia, Mom! Let’s get out of here!”

So, whether you want to share about a great store or a bad store, or a great book, or to leave a prayer request, we hope you’ll join us.

I’ll start.  First, let me tell you that I loathe shopping.  Actually, loathe isn’t a strong enough word. So, when my daughter asked me to take her to the mall to exchange a pair of jeans, I need to tell you I responded rather immaturely. To say that I did not want to go shopping would be a gross understatement.  I sulked and frowned.  I behaved exactly how my kids get in trouble for behaving.   Not one of my finer parenting moments. I drug my feet the whole way and grumbled between clenched teeth that this was an “in and out trip”, no looking at stuff.

When we got to the store, Vivo, at the lovely River Park Square Mall, my attitude slowly changed. Pink chandeliers. Everywhere. My kind of place! We made our way to the counter to process our exchange and were greeted by a very friendly sales associate. I glanced down and saw some wallets that said “Faith, Hope and Love”. You don’t see those everyday. I looked around the store. “Is this by chance a Christian business?” I asked.  The associate told me “yes” and gave me some information about their other locations. Grace pointed to the ceiling “Hear the Third Day, Mom? They’re playing Positive Life Radio!”

I actually enjoyed myself at this store and plan to visit often. Well, as often as someone who doesn’t enjoy shopping, but who has a teenage daughter goes shopping.

If you live in the Spokane area you can visit Vivo at any of their five locations. They are also opening a new store in the Tri-Cities area, which will be their largest store yet.

Have you ever heard of or been to Vivo? I hope you will go check them out and support this nice Christian owned business. And, if you plan to come to our conference next year, you can go visit Vivo!

Your turn to add something good, bad, or a prayer request.

 

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