Keeper of His Home

by Chelsea McCafferty

How Will My Daughter Remember Me?

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The human brain is a funny thing. Sometimes mine works well and other times not so much. I’ve learned to accept that and just laugh at myself when my brain decides to malfunction. When it comes to memories, I have very little memory of my young childhood. I’d say most of what occurred in my home before the age of ten is something of a mystery to me. I have flashes of memories, but not much detail. My younger brother, however, has a very good memory and he can tell stories of his young childhood with vivid detail. Interesting how the brain works.

I may not remember much of my childhood, but I’d say I’m more on the uncommon end of the spectrum in this. Most children have memories from much younger than ten years old. The truth is, children remember what they see going on around them. They form memories and impressions very early in life. They are taking it all in visually and aurally much earlier than most of us realize. They are forming memories and associations with those memories perhaps even before they know how to express what they are seeing/hearing/feeling.

So why is this important?

I’ll confess that there have been times I’ve been very convicted about the way I spoke or an action I did in front of my young daughter when she was three, four or five years old. In times of weakness and in the flesh, I’ve made comments to others that were hurtful or even sinful with her in the room and I’ve very foolishly assumed she wasn’t paying attention because she was playing or because she was too young to understand what I was saying. I’ve criticized my husband in her presence. I’ve gossiped. I’ve flippantly made comments that were just silly and unedifying. She has heard me say these things, and though she perhaps hasn’t responded or reacted in that moment, she has taken some of it in. She has formed memories and connections based on my sinful words.

Now before you get all bent out of shape or start judging me, understand that I have repented of this sin and am forgiven. I thank God that we can be real and honest and open about our struggles with the flesh and with sin. 1 John 1:8 says, “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” I thank Him even more than we are saved by grace through faith and not by works. I have no problem confessing this sin because I know that God has offered me forgiveness for all of my transgressions, but why bring it up?

“You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.” Deut 6:7

God tells us that we are to teach our children something here. What is it we are supposed to teach them? The answer is in the context.

“Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.” Deut 6:4-5

Our God is one Lord and that we shall love the Lord God with every part of our being. That’s what we are supposed to be teaching our children, but notice what God says about how we are supposed to teach them this. Do we teach it by simply reading this scripture and then going about our life in any manner we like? Nope. We are supposed to teach them by talking about the Lord in our homes, when we are out, when we lie down, when we rise up….basically we teach our children to love the Lord by talking about Him and loving Him ourselves at all times.

That’s pretty convicting. We need to remember that our children are always listening and watching. They may hear us proclaim Christ when we are in a good mood and things are going well. They see us smile and shout “amen” at church. They may even see us read the Bible from time to time. Is this sufficient? I’m convicted that the words of my mouth should always be glorifying to the Lord, and that while I speak and act out of love for Jesus, my daughter is learning how to love Him herself. Nothing is more important. Nothing.

Knowing the calling God has on me in this, and knowing what a failure I am in this way, I ask the Lord for Holy Spirit power to reign in my tongue and to make my speech and actions a constant reflection of my love for Jesus. I pray that the flesh would be triumphed over by the grace of God and His Spirit working in me. I pray most of all that my daughter would not remember a mother who only loved the Lord in some parts of her life, but rather a mother who was sold out for Jesus every day. I hope she remembers that, when I failed, I confessed and repented. I didn’t pretend to be perfect, but rather understood God’s grace in my life, thus compelling me to seek Him more.

Children remember what they see and hear from very young. Their young hearts are being molded even now. The things we say and do matter to them. While I may never be perfect on this earth, I pray that my daughter will remember me as someone who genuinely and deeply loved the Lord with all of my heart, soul and might and that she will love Him all the days of her life.

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Why Do I Love Jesus?

 Jesus. Name above all names. Just to say His name is to bring hope, healing and peace. Jesus. I love Him. Some may wonder why. Why do I love Jesus?

I love Jesus….

Because of who He is. Creator of the universe. Maker of all things. The first in authority over all the earth. The Son of God and God in the flesh. The Lamb who takes away the sin of the world. Jesus is amazing! He loves deeply and unconditionally. His love and mercy have no limits. He was gentle as He ministered to the lost and broken, and yet He was strong enough to go through the pain and humiliation of beating and crucifixion. Jesus is the definition of awesomeness. Full of love, compassion and beauty. How could you not love Him?

I love Jesus….

Because of what He did. Jesus left His place of glory and praise, motivated by love, and came to this world that He Himself created to save sinners like me. He served with startling humility. He loved with abandon and without concern for how others viewed Him. He washed the feet of His disciples, and even washed the feet of His betrayer. He choose to die on the cross, taking upon Himself the punishment for your sins and mine. He suffered for me. Bled for me. Died for me. He did it for you too. He did it so that we could have forgiveness for our sins and spend eternity with Him in Paradise. How could you not love Him?

I love Jesus….

Because He loved me first. While I was still a sinner, lost and filthy, this King of Glory looked down upon me and loved me. He saw me and decided I was worth it. I was worth stepping down from His throne to die in my place. He touched me when no one else would. He loved me when everyone else abandoned me. Jesus loves you too. He loves you whether or not you love Him. He loves you whether or not you believe in Him. It makes no difference. He hates our sin, but He loves our souls and desires that none should perish, but that we should all come to know Him. He loves you so very much. How could you not love Him?

I love Jesus….more than anything else. I love Him more than I can even understand. There is none like Him in heaven or on earth. There is no one that deserves our love and adoration more than Jesus. Mostly I love Him because He has never, ever given up on me. When I fall (which is often), He picks me back up. When I’m feeling alone and scared, He embraces me and reminds me that I’m special to Him.

I love Jesus, and loving Jesus is the most important part of my life. Another important part is sharing Jesus with others so that they might love Him too. If you don’t love Jesus, it’s because you don’t know Him. When you get to know Him, your heart will soften and you’ll realize that He is what you’ve been searching for and haven’t been able to find anywhere else. You’ll see that He is what you need. He brings healing and hope. He brings forgiveness and love. He brings salvation. He loves you. Get to know Jesus and give your heart to Him. It’ll be the best choice you ever made.

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