Message to my webinar attendees 24.4.2020
Hope this finds you well. This morning we prayed that God will help us to strengthen the family altar. I truly believe God has called us into a powerful season as mothers in Zion.In this season, God desires for family foundations to be strengthened better than ever. Connecting with our children and partners like never before. That vision will require an unwavering commitment and understanding that with God’s help we can do all things. I pray that you find time to truly connect/ know and understand your child/ren. To be committed to praying and speaking Gods promises concerning them.
In the mad rush of previous life, we were robbed of those opportunities. May God help us all. Simple things such as eating together at the dinner table with no phones, are powerful. Be committed to conversations at the dinner table. Start with simple questions such as ‘how has been your day? what did you like and what didn’t you like. Share what you personally enjoyed during the day, what were your struggles and how are you are finding solutions to those challenges.
Whilst it’s tempting to let the children do their own things especially if they are older or even adults, this is a perfect opportunity to effect their lives. Reach out in love. It may be uncomfortable at the start if you are not used to this, believe me, it’s worth the try and sticking it out.
This is also a great time to uproot those teachings in our schools and society. For months some of us were worried about the primary school curriculum. Here we are and it’s our opportunity to plant the truth into the hearts and minds of our children. Remember no topic is out of bounds. Talk about friendships, relationships, sex, faith etc. Our children desire to hear our honest opinions on these matters because we are their parents and they look up to us. Yes, I know sometimes it may look as if they don’t, listen, they do.
How about looking back to the family photos albums that have been piling up for years? It’s also a great opportunity to connect. If there are baby photos, share your pregnant journey. If possible, try not to focus on the glossy bits only, share the struggle and upheavals because life is like that.
Talk about your vision of a family. What do you hope to accomplish as a family.? What values are important to you as a family. For example, mine as a mother family, love and service. I am always encouraging and explaining to my two that family life is important and that value is demonstrated through actions. Things such as the regular video calls to my parents, WhatsApp chats with my siblings and phone calls to the sisters in my life. Relationships are important and we invest time and efforts. My children are fortunate to see some of the impact some of you have in my life.
May Gods love surround you always. May His peace reign supreme in your homes.
With love and blessings
Thank you very much to all those who joined us at 3pm GMT. We were talking the challenges of parenting and Below is a short summary of some of the take-aways from the session.
✨Remember in our parenting journey, connection with our children is key. Be available mentally, emotionally and physically.
✨Prioritise your children. Let your diary and commitments reflect that. Remember with children love is spelt TIME.
✨It’s ok and totally acceptable as an african parent to apologise to your children when you get things wrong.
🌟Faith community leaders, please have a heart for families. Do not hide under political correctness. Remember ‘what would Jesus do?’ and do just that. Consider the single parent homes with the heart of our Lord Jesus.
We explored in depth the issue of supporting single parent homes and providing mentorship for vulnerable young men. There were issues around married men/pastors and leaders being fearful of supporting a single mother. I concluded that if were don’t, someone else will and many a times these are bad guys that we don’t want near our children/ community. If we look at the county lines model; the drug dealer simply befriends and entice our children with gifts and promise of a bright future. We can adopt the same model. If youth pastors/ leaders took the same interest in our children, understand what they like, their fears, vulnerability, I believe we will SOME of them over.
We encouraged faith communities to have properly, well structured programs with safeguarding processes in place to offer mentorship programs.
Jesus was very controversial in most of his relationships, driven by compassion and love for the marginalised as well as vulnerable. Remember the Samaritan woman at well? She had a thing with men yet Jesus risked all that.
For parents struggling with children, please seek help. Don’t stew at home. There is a lot of help available from local authorities to charities such as Migrant Family Support and Father 2 father
For more in-depth conversation, listen to link below:
Remember you are not alone 💕
Motherhood and me: Goal setting
On the webinar we started by acknowledging the need to have ambitious goals when it comes to our #parenting role.
Why set a goal?
• Setting goals gives you long-term vision and short-term motivation.
•By knowing precisely what you want to achieve, you know where you have to concentrate your effort.
•By setting sharp, clearly defined goals, you can measure and take pride in your achievements.
It is important for us as parents to think about ‘what kind of a parent do I want to be?’. The key to answering that question is in visualising what you are trying to achieve. How do I want my role/ position as mother to look like 5, 10, 20 years and beyond?
An example was drawn of having a goal of being a ‘praying mom’, ‘kind mom’, ‘playful mom’. How does one achieve that goal? It became clear that one will need to read books on prayer, praying mothers, prayer for your children etc. One may want to think about other moms who exude those traits. Who do I know personally or virtually as a kind mom, praying mom? etc. What is it about their life that I can learn from and apply now or later in my own parenting journey?
You will also need to make a further investment in an accountability partner/ buddy/ mentor/. This is a person who then hold you accountable to your goals, aspirations and all the things that you are trying to achieve. It is important to find the right person who is able to support you with your goal (s) and the bigger vision of the parent or the mother that you are trying to be. It needs to be someone you can be open and transparent.
While a friend or family member may be the first person who comes to mind, how good are they at holding you accountable? How ready are they to listen and support you with your ambitious goal without feeling a tinge of jealousy or doubts about your capabilities?
Other areas to consider when setting goals are:
•Career – What level do you want to reach in your career, or what do you want to achieve? How is my career going to support my parenting role?
•Financial – How much do you want to earn, by what stage? How is this related to your parenting goals!
•Education – Is there any knowledge you want to acquire in particular? What information and skills will you need to have in order to achieve that parenting goal?
•Family – How are you going to be a good parent? What things do you need to do in order to achieve those goals?
•Spiritual- What is my spiritual life like and what how can I get it to better?
I emphasised the importance of including our spouses/ partners in this goal setting. Some things may be pertinent to motherhood, overall we hope the goals will encompass the role of fathers.
Today’s session was an opportunity to start to think about those goals and who is going to support you achieve them. I encourage you to take time, do some soul searching, revisit those little girls aspirations about the kind of mother we wanted to be. Use pen and paper to write those aspirations down. Pray over them. Discuss them with your spouse or partner. Those with able children, you can choose to include and consult them in your goal setting too. You may be surprised on how your children view your mothering style, vision /values.
It is our prayer that you find the time, energy and resources to do this. We hope you will find the exercise useful and worthwhile. When we meet next time in January 2020, we are offering an opportunity to write those goals down clearly and beautifully during our #visionboard workshop. We will be extending an invitation to our Intentional Parenting Members Club where we share our goals/ visions in a safe space and hold one another accountable.
Look out for updates on instagram stories (intentional_parenting) , facebook and whatsapp
I’m on Instagram as intentional_parenting. Install the app to follow my photos and videos. https://www.instagram.com/invites/contact/?i=jdbmpt64mjl&utm_content=3bmfqzz
May your choices reflect your hopes and not your fears’ Nelson
Some days I wake up with an enormous sense responsibility in raising our children to be everything that they are meant to be. That can be crippling when the what if’s are glaring at you. I do not know about you but those moments can easily leave us in a place of fear when we look at what is around us and what is happening around the globe. I want to challenge you today and say mamma choose hope in place of fear.
Hope is trusting, hope is believing in the beauty of the future with resounding confidence, and that’s what we bestow upon our children. My prayer for you today is that the Lord fill you to overflow with hope as you continue to trust Him.
I pray that you will choose faith. Faith to know that you are qualified and equipped to raise your children. You have it in you. Look deep inside yourself. Faith to reach out in confident surrender when it all gets too much, which it does many a times depending where you are in your journey.
Above all, I pray that you will choose love. That, you will love yourself, yes, you. Love you more, appreciate you more, be in love with you. I believe when we do that, we give others permission to love us and love us better.
Tonight on the webinar we were discussing celebrating milestones. We acknowledged that we go through a lot of emotions as our children reach different milestones; first day at nursery, school, university, girlfriends etc.
With the exam season just gone past, we encouraged each other that we should celebrate the effort we put into things:
– Celebrate our children for completing the exams than waiting to celebrate the grades. It is more important to acknowledge their efforts, dedication and commitment.
– Celebrate ourselves for accomplishing our goals too, be it cooking fresh meals consistency for the week, listening to all the teen friendship dramas etc. Buy yourself some flowers, paint your nails, go out for coffee.
Celebrations can take different forms to suit the family, budget, child’s age personality etc. Examples were given of cooking the child’s favourite meal, prayer, thank you note, verbal acknowledgements of his/her efforts.
I remember the stress we were under when big brother wrote his GCSE. It was monumental! What didn’t help was that his mock results were beyond shocking but appalling in every sense of the word.
Initially, I panicked and then quickly remembered to turn to God. I poured my heart out to Him and I can tell you when I got up from my knees, I looked my boy square in the eye and told him it was going to be ok.
I remember very well sharing this with a sister from church that I was praying and believeing God for my son’s results. The sister chided and reminded me that the boy needs to revise. Yes, that’s true. What I knew was that if his mocks were anything to reflect his current capabilities, there was no way a couple of months’ revision would do to give us acceptable grades. Anyhow, when the boy wrote his last exam, we celebrated. We thanked God that he didn’t buckle down with pressure.
I am grateful to tell you that the boy did pass and exceeded everyone’s expectations. Some may agree with him and say, he is capable. I believe prayer works.
We also wanted to acknowledge and celebrate the #1styear milestone of this parenting webinar. Exactly a year on 31.7.17, we embarked on this journey and it has been phenomenal with lots of learning, support and encouragement.
We would like to celebrate you the mother’s that have encouraged us so much along the way.
Watch the space for more details.
Eternally grateful. ❤🙏🏽
Today I pray for grace. Grace for us to do what we need to do without feeling the strain and pressure. Over the years, I have come to appreciate and understand that grace is the oil that lubricates and eases the friction.
I remember one particular day, 11th November 2017. I woke up as usual and got myself ready for work. However, something prompted me to look in the mirror just as I was brushing my teeth.
As I lifted my head up to look into that mirror, a gentle voice whispered ‘that’s grace’. I stood and stared. I was starring at the person in the mirror. Indeed grace had located her, just as she was. It must have been a whole minute while I stood there and just intently locked eyes with this graced being.
It was in that very moment, that Gods grace became so apparent. Overwhelming, sustaining and incredible grace. I have always had a sense of His presence, enablement, encouragement and comfort. What I didn’t realise is the depth of His grace.
That week, work had been super busy and our son wasn’t feeling very well that he missed the entire week of school. As moms, we often just carry on, being brave, strong and composed. We do not realise how much strain and stress we are carrying. On this particular day, in that mirror moment, I got to understand that His grace is the buffer to my cortisol levels. Grace is indeed what carries and sustains me. The pressure both at home and work front had not gone unnoticed. The long daily commute did not help either. His grace had enabled me to carry on despite it all.
This grace is available to all who would ask for it. He says my grace is sufficient for you too today. Would you receive that grace?
Prayer: Lord, thank you that your grace is available for me today. You know the things I need to do, the places I need to be and all the stuff that needs done. May I not strive but receive your help without feeling guilty or lazy. Amen. 🙏🏽♥️
I am alive and well and for that I’m grateful . I give thanks to the Lord for His many blessings towards me. For those who remember I started my gratitude jar on the 15th of February.
Since then, I have realised so many things and achieved so much personally, professionally and socially. Somehow, my jar has more sticky notes but I can honestly tell you, they do not reflect all the things I was meant to have noted. I have become lazy and somewhat forgetful to write them down. Typical, right? It doesn’t please the father, remember the parable of the ten lepers?
This week I am grateful for a Daddies Girl (DG) who is no longer with us but taught and showed us how to live valiantly and gallantly for the Lord. Yesterday, we had the privilege to attend sister Grace’s beautiful send off. What beautiful testimony of how she touched so many lives with her faith, leading many to Christ. Personally, in the few months that I got to really know her, I learnt so much about faith, being forthright and a woman of integrity. I am grateful to God, for that opportunity I had to watch, listen and learn from her.
The Bible says ‘how can they know if the gospel is not preached? It goes on to say .. how beautiful are the feet of those who carry the gospel. Our lives are letters that can be read, what messages are we preaching at work, home and our communities?
Thank you Lord for all that you are to us. Sovereign king, Redeemer and restorer of our lives. ♥️🙏🏽
Motherhood and well being
We were talking motherhood and well being on the webinar this evening.
The ladies acknowledged that life can be busy and hectic but taking time out to recharge is important. We also acknowledged that as diaspora parents, lack of extended family support is a massive challenge.
Some of the comments from the attendees:
” Know that you do not love your family if your do not look after yourself. Who is going to take care of them if you burn out?”
“Don’t give ashes to your family when you have burnt out”
Remember what they tell you on the plane in case of emergency???
“Put the oxygen mask on yourself first before you put it on your child”.
Strategies used by some of the moms in enhancing their well being.
‘-Me time’ at the swimming pool as well as reading and listening to biblical podcasts.
-Exercising together as family, thereby being a role model and looking after our health.
-Praying alone and with other ladies. Being willing to be open and vulnerable with other mothers about our challenges.
– Building and maintaining a social network.
– Learn and be prepared for the seasons of life. For example unplanned pregnancies potentially may cause a strain on role transition into motherhood.
– Learning from other moms from all age groups and of different seasons.
– Looking to God for counsel and wisdom.
– Empower the older children to help with younger siblings with activities around the house.
-Getting hubby or significant other to help with childcare whilst I attend to ‘me’.
– A bath soak with candles, oils and a book is always a good easy treat.
-Platforms such this webinar, to come and learn together, building our own online village.
How do you unwind? What strategies have you seen or heard that are helpful? Would love to hear from you. xxx
Seed of Hope 💕💕