Mommy, Concentrated

Jesus Centered Family Focused

Village People

The little people really threw me for a loop today. For about an hour, all I could do was shake my head and wave my hand. At a loss, I thought about seeking  feedback from the moms in my Facebook group because at that moment, I just needed a “Yeah, girl” and an “Mmm-hmmm.” But after considering it for a moment, I decided I’d do my usual: sit and stew and fuss. It’s funny. When I was tearing up my own mama’s house Mama would actually pick up the telephone, not the laptop. She’d commiserate with women who lived around the corner or across town; people she’d see at church, in the grocery store, or at work; friends she touched and talked to on a regular basis. They dropped by the house with potato salad or to borrow a hat for Sunday. These ladies knew each other by the names their own mamas and daddies gave them, not a user name they plucked from the Internet stratosphere to hide behind. Mama recognized her buddies when she saw them live and in person; she didn’t have random LinkedIn connections. Her children played at her friends’ houses, ate their food, and slept in their beds—we even got disciplined right alongside their own children because they knew us and loved us. So, when Mama told Alice what her daughter had done, Alice would offer more than an “Mmm-hmmm.” Alice would say, “I know exactly what you’re talking about because I saw her do that last week when she was here with so-and-so. This is what I told her.” Thing is, I’m not really of the...

A Banner Day

On our drive to the beach we passed a Jeep loaded with sun-soaked, smiling young men. And flapping in the breeze just as happily behind them were our nation’s Stars and Stripes and the Confederate flag. It truly baffles the mind. Even if you say it’s not about love and hatred, the two represent two totally different ideals. One stands for the Union; one for secession from that same Union. One interdependence, the other independence. One national pride, the other the pride of self-rule. How can you proudly support both? For me, it’s like…          ◊frying Songbird’s turkey bacon in bacon grease.          ◊watching Lone Ranger hide her Littlest Pets from Brown Sugar and then share them with friends.          ◊me posting about servanthood and whining about motherhood. Contradictory flags a-wavin’ in air. I don’t think today’s hot-button political issues boil down to North versus South, them versus us, Republican and Democrat, Liberal against Conservative. In God’s eyes we’re not opposites, separate, better, or less than. One label doesn’t save; the other doesn’t condemn. The answer is more black and white: we’re either for Him or against Him. As a believer, my battlefield is in the spiritual realm and not at a national convention. When I wave my red-stained cross high above, behind, and before me, there’s no room for other flags, colors, and allegiances. It blocks out issues that distract me from my important purpose as a faithful citizen of God’s kingdom. It helps me forgive past and present sins and focus on what’s eternal over what’s temporal. Heaven matters,...

Little Things Mean a Lot

  Okay. I birthed seven children with barely a stick to bite on. I broke my pinky toe and shed a few tears. I got hit by a car as a child and walked away with six stitches and a Mountain Dew. But oh, the pain of this thorn in my index finger! It’s a wonder how such a tiny thing can affect so much—pin curling my hair (I know it’s not the 1960s, y’all, but I still do that); texting, (yes, Songbird, my one-finger “mommy texting”); and just breathing…It hurts. All I want to do is cradle my finger. Having Hubby poke and prick it was so painful—and fruitless—because it is way deep and it refuses to budge. I remember that day when I couldn’t have been more than four years old, and mama had styled my hair. Oh, how I hated it. So, as my sister and I headed across the street to visit a neighbor I asked her to redo it. Well, mamas see everything, and before we knew it, we both got called home, spanked, and sent to our room. Again, such a little thing that led to painful consequences. Tiny details make all the difference. Yesterday, we all oohed and ahhed as a cute yellow ladybug crawled over Think Tank’s arm. Now, if that had been a spider….! We could’ve charged the neighbors admission because we’d have certainly entertained them. Two tiny legs mean the world in our book. That’s how sin is. I tell my peeps, it’s never a little lie, or a little disobedience. We must diligently dig out these inclinations and temptations,...

Dearly Beloved

I was alright until Maven told me, “I hope they didn’t end up in the trash can.” “They”…my wedding rings. Until that moment I’d undertaken a casual search, starting with the usual places: the pockets of my pink robe, my yellow robe, and the gray shorts I’d worn the day before; my jewelry box I never use, in the dust balls under the bathroom cabinet. Then I moved on to the bottom of the clothes hamper, the green dish on the kitchen island, the top of the chest, and the bowls on the bookcase. After that, I started gently interrogating folks and working my way through each room in the house, leaving no stone or little person unturned. I even offered get-out-of-jail free cards to possible offenders. I still didn’t panic until Maven shook her head and used the words “trash can” and “rings” in the same breath. That’s when I prayed, “Lord, only You know where they are. And only You can tell me where to find them.” I continued looking and hoping and praying, writing a mental blog about the whole thing, until finally, at 1 a.m., I resigned myself to a morning hunt through used Kleenex, last week’s pork loin, soured milk cartons, and other scary goodies from our kitchen trash. In other words, I was at a loss. So I gave up. I recognized this sense of hopelessness all dressed up in faith and resignation. I felt it during each miscarriage. I’ve felt it when seeking healing in broken relationships. I’ve felt it in little things like losing my keys. I’ve felt it regarding my publication efforts. So many...

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