Monday, May 24, 2010

My Orange Plaid Chair

While my two year old daughter Heather was napping, I took the opportunity to read for a few minutes in my favorite orange, gold and brown plaid chair. (Yes, it was the 70’s, right up there with avocado.) An article piqued my interest.

The writer discussed praying for our children. “Of course,” she said, “We pray for them to develop a heart for God, their friends, the right teacher, safety, etc, but start praying for your child’s future mate the day they are born.” As a fairly new Christian, that prayer request had never crossed my mind, but that day, my prayers began for a little boy, unknown to me, who would eventually become Heather’s husband. I prayed for all facets of his life-- his faith, schooling, friends, decisions, influences, his parents to lead him in the right direction and that he would come into Heather’s life at the right time.

When Paul appeared on the scene 22 years later, I looked at an answer to prayer.

Last weekend, we had the privilege of watching Paul cross the stage to receive his Doctorate of Ministry. What an amazing moment! I immediately thought of Jeremiah 33:3, “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” From a few minutes spent in my orange plaid chair, to thirty-three years later, God graciously continues to reveal His great and mighty things.

I continue to pray for my adult children, but now I also have the privilege and responsibility to pray for my four grandchildren.
Yes, all the usual prayers for them too, but also their future mates. Somewhere, there are four children probably between one and five who may eventually enter our family. I only know at this point, that my job is to “call”. When we finally meet them, I have no doubt that I will see how God has molded their lives, but I also know that more is yet to come.

Blessings as you pray,

Marilyn
www.marilynnutter.com

Monday, May 10, 2010

The Grandma Test

My husband is a super “Papa” so the episode below doesn’t apply, but I received this email (and I'm sorry that I don't have an author's name to give credit), but I couldn’t resist sharing with you. Hope that you smile too.


THE GRANDMA TEST

I was out walking with my four-year-old granddaughter. She picked up something off the ground and started to put it in her mouth. I took the item away from her and asked her not to do that.
"Why?" my Granddaughter asked.
"Because it's been on the ground; you don't know where it's been, it's dirty, and probably has germs," I replied. At this point, my granddaughter looked at me with total admiration and asked, "Grandma, how do you know all this stuff? You are so smart."
I had to think quickly. "All Grandmas know this stuff. It's on the Grandma Test. You have to know this stuff or they don't let you be a Grandma."

We walked along in silence for two or three minutes, but she was evidently pondering this new information. "Oh .......I get it!" she beamed. "So if you don't pass the test, you have to be the Grandpa."

"Exactly," I replied, with a big smile on my face.


If you were writing a “Grandma Test”, what is one question you’d ask? And…what’s the answer?


With a smile,
Marilyn
www.marilynnutter.com

Monday, May 3, 2010

Lessons from Facebook

Facebook has it pluses and minuses. It can be very time consuming but Facebook can be an encouragement too. Since I have moved around a lot and have friends all over the US, FB has served as a way to reunite and connect.

As I read notifications and "wall", friends will often give prayer requests and answers, a quote, Bible verse, share exciting happenings and family updates and be just plain fun. Sometimes people will ask for advice: “Any ideas for a cheap family vacation?”

Well last week, a young mom asked for advice. She wrote: “I re-instituted quiet hour after lunch (when and why did I ever stop doing that?) and now I’m faced with a dilemma: use the time to do some much needed house cleaning or cuddle up with a good book and possibly nap. Oh, the difficult decisions of life?!? :)”

In the comments section, friends answered her question:

I'd clean for 15 minutes and read for 45. :)
We all need that time to get recharged!!

That's easy...take a nap! :)

There will ALWAYS be something in need of cleaning. Read a book, maybe it will have the same effect on you as me, helps you fall asleep, (if you let it :).

Easy…self care: a book, nap, soft music, a cup of tea, any or all of the above.

The final post revealed her choice:
Okay, hold on to your socks! I actually opted for the book and a short rest. It was wonderful and gave me that extra boost I needed to get the cleaning done afterward. YAY!

It was followed by an affirmation from a friend:
Good choice!! :)

I’m glad that Ann opted for self-care and has learned this lesson early. I admit that it took me a long time before I realized that self-care wasn’t self-ish but necessary if I wanted to be all I should and be all I could to the people in my life.

After all, don’t the flight attendants tell us that if we are traveling with children, to put our oxygen mask on first so that we are in good shape to then put one on your child?

Have you learned that lesson? How do you live out self-care? If not, is today the day to start?