Archives For accountable

December, oh how I love you! It brings colder weather, Chase’s birthday, snow on occasion and the Christmas season! It really is my favorite time of the year! The joys of bundling up with a good book in hand while the fireplace sends off it’s warmth, decorating the Christmas tree, shopping for loved ones in wonderfully decorated stores that are playing those catchy Christmas tunes. And you can’t forget all the fun Christmas movies that are always a great addition to this time of year! There is only one thing that puts a damper on this glorious season… STRESS! We all get stressed from time to time. Those packed shopping malls can be the cherry on top of a stressful sundae. You all know what I am talking about… the crowded walk ways that no one can ever get through without feeling squished. Then there are all the other stresses that can come around this time… budgeting for presents. We all want to be able to afford to give everyone we love something nice for Christmas, but on a nice fee-sable budget The last thing anyone wants is to give a gift that screams budget.

While most of these things are never really that big of a deal, when the moment comes that we feel overwhelmed the stress has finally come and everything is a big deal! Here is a confession… when I am stressed chocolate and I are best friends-especially Reese’s peanut buttercups! I know, this is a terrible habit to form. It’s either the chocolate or crying. Well this month I am attempting to tackle this issue! Month two of my Searching for Simplicity began this week and I am doing the stress fast. Yes, I am well aware that I can not prevent from stressful situations coming my way, but that is not the point of this fast. This month is all about being intentional in how we respond to stress, making it a habit to run to God in prayer instead of our typical responses.

This fast is all about setting aside seven times in my day for prayer, praying over specific subjects during each prayer time. Currently my alarms are set for midnight, 6:00 a.m., 9:00 a.m., noon, 3:00 p.m., 6:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m.! Yes that’s right, my alarm is set for midnight! It won’t be easy, but already in the first week I am amazed at what I have begun to learn about myself, but that I will share with you another time!

 

Photo Credit: Allie Caulfield

“Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.” Psalm 119:105 (NIV)

With this year coming to an end and the new year right around the corner a lot of people are thinking about new year resolutions. I myself don’t have any this year. The reason for that is a few months ago I made a 30 before 30 list and a lot of the things that are on there would have been things that I would have used as a new year’s resolution. Instead I will just continue to work on my list and cross things off one by one. The item on my list that comes to mind for a new year’s resolution is reading the Bible all the way through. I have heard many resolutions to spend more time in the Bible and more time with God daily. I agree with those resolutions, in fact those are great ones for every Christian to have each year. I have been finishing up a devotional plan from Youversion and come January 1st I plan to open up to Genesis and start my journey reading through the Bible. I don’t know how long it will take me, I don’t have a certain timeline in place for when I want to be done. I plan to just enjoy God’s word and see what He has to show me as I read His word all the way through. I look forward to my “resolution.” Do you have one?

Photo Credit: Ian Bailey-Mortimer

“The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender.” Proverbs 22:7 (NIV)

“If you will live like no one else, later you can live like no one else.” Dave Ramsey 

My husband and I have never been bad with money. We have made a few bad choices… but who hasn’t? We learn from these lessons and move on. Any time Financial Peace University by Dave Ramsey has been offered at our church Chase and I always felt like we already knew what it was about, we manage our money and we don’t have a bunch of credit cards so we don’t need to go. Last weekend Chase told me that he feels like we should be more serious about it. We have been working to be debt free but haven’t necessarily done it the Financial Peace way. Now we are. Thankfully we do not have much debt, but we want to be able to get to the point where we have the freedom to do with our finances what God wants… the ability to give generously when He prompts us and the ability to truly be good stewards of what He gives us. I think because we have been working on paying things off on our own made us feel like we didn’t have to take the suggestions of others. But, God changed our heart. We don’t want to go about life acting like we know everything, Financial Peace has worked for so many people making them completely debt free. I know that we will get there! We will be able to look at our finances and truly have the freedom He intends, to give as He intends… instead of being tied down to a monthly payment. We have begun our journey to being debt free!

“You became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you welcomed the message in the midst of severe suffering with the joy given by the Holy Spirit.” 1 Thessalonians 1:6 (NIV)

“The Lord’s message rang out from you not only in Macedonia and Achaia—your faith in God has become known everywhere. Therefore we do not need to say anything about it” 1 Thessalonians 1:8 (NIV)

I have started a Bible reading plan from YouVersion. The reading plan I started is about living a divinely inspired life. The daily readings have really been a helpful reminder that we all have a purpose. These two verses though were a part of a daily reading about living a life worthy of imitation. Thinking about that really puts the truth of accountability on your mind. It is easy to live however you want but as a mom when you are raising your children they will imitate what they see. So, I have to live a life that I would be happy and proud to see them imitate. I am accountable for my life and the way I live it. I am also accountable for how I raise my children. I can not raise my children to believe that it is okay for you to “stand” for something yet your life reflects the complete opposite. No, I want my children to see in their mom that what she says she believes to her very core and her life reflects just that. I want my children to know that we are all accountable for our actions and for them to live lives that are worthy of imitation. Knowing that we must live our lives in a way of imitation gives us a reminder that we are accountable for how we live. We can either live in imitation of Jesus or we can not, but we are accountable for that. Because this is something I strive to teach my children then I must make sure they see it in me first!

“So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.” Romans 14:12 (NIV)

“Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.” Hebrews 4:13 (NIV)

Yesterday’s post was about legacy, what kind of parent are we and what legacy will we leave to our children. With that in mind I am writing todays post about accountability. We can not leave a good legacy behind if we do not first acknowledge the fact that we are accountable. The kind of person we are, the kind of child, sibling and parent that we are will all be things that we will be held accountable for. So I guess the big question is then… is the way that we are living our lives reflecting the accountability that we have to God? Are we living in a way that brings Him the glory? Are we striving to do His will and please Him? Or, are we living for ourselves? I will be the first to tell you that I screw up. No one will get this right all day every day. But, we can not ever live our lives with out this at the front of our mind. If there is ever a time that we let it slip from the front of our minds then we may stop feeling accountable and then what kind of example are we setting for our children? I know it is hard to remember that in all areas of our lives God holds us accountable, but that is part of living a life worthy of being His child. The blessings we will receive will far out way the day to day challenges we face to live how we should. Growing up I was taught to find an accountability partner because it helps keep that point more tangible to us, makes us realize it a little more. Perhaps this is something we should all consider, maybe we should commit to find another mom that we can join together to help keep each other in check.