Becoming a Warrior Mom in a Hostile Culture {Giveaway}

We are raising our children in an ever-changing and hostile culture. We need to become warriors!

Raising children in today's hostile culture requires we raise warriors--and that means we need to become warriors!

When I dreamt of being a mother, I never imagined I'd be having the conversations I have with my children today. There was a time early on in my years of mothering I was lead by fear and wanted to keep my children in a bubble, safe from the world and all the influences that were counter to my values and beliefs. I was afraid the world would eat them alive. 

Eventually, there came a point when I knew I had two choices: 

1. Hide my children away from the world in hopes of protecting them

or

2. Raise my children to be warriors for Christ 

See, when the culture began making significant shifts, I knew raising wimpy Christians was not an option. Maybe that sounds harsh, but I don't want my children just to know of Jesus and believe He existed. They need so much more of a foundation than that if they are going to withstand the storms that will inevitably hit them. And they will. And not just as adults, but as kids growing up around other kids who {have and} will challenge their values and beliefs head-on.

I needed to commit to the task of truly pouring into my children to help them understand why they believe what they believe, and encouraging them to ask questions when they didn't understand something. I try hard to be proactive about talking about life so they are somewhat prepared to handle what it throws at them. 

That's when I began praying fiercely and fervently for wisdom. I needed God to guide me through these waters I was not prepared to navigate. And I really believe prayer was such a huge proponent of God giving me courage and direction to do what I needed to do, as a mom who values the same things Jesus values. And that was to step out in faith and raise warriors for Christ.

It reminds me of a scene in Wonder Woman when Diana wanted to train to be a warrior but her mom had forbidden her to learn to fight. Hippolyta was trying to protect her by keeping her close and in the dark about who she really was. But Diana's aunt was wise to convince Hippolyta that training her to fight would be the best way to protect her, the only way to truly protect her.

Now get this: once Hippolyta agreed to allow Diana to be trained, she told Antiope to train her 10 times harder than any Amazon before her.

Moms, this is where we are right now in the culture we are living in and this is what we need to do. We have a real Enemy on the prowl. He wants to destroy families and steal our lives by breaking us down little by little. He feeds on our weaknesses and that of our children's. Kind of like Aries, the god of war. {Who is fictional, yes. But it's a great metaphor}. 

We need to raise and train our children harder and to be stronger in order to face a culture that is counter to what Christ stands for: righteousness.

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. - Ephesians 6:12

The first thing we must teach our children is love and compassion. 

And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. -1 Corinthians 13:2

As they encounter people who are different from them and have different values, it's important they stand for what is right while still loving people. Otherwise nothing they stand for will matter. Those who are not of the Christian faith will not embrace Christian values, so we can't expect them to. But we can love them right where they are while continuing to live out the life Jesus has called us to.

A MomStrong mom understand that she is a warrior, not just for her kids, but for the generations that follow. -Heidi St. John

Heidi St. John {The Busy Mom} has released an excellent book for moms who want to become "MomStrong"; who want to fight for their families but aren't quite sure where to start.

 

Heidi offers some very practical and encouraging tips to become that mom warrior your children need you to be in the hostile culture they are growing up in.

"And in order to prepare warriors, you have to become a warrior yourself." ~Heidi St. John, Becoming MomStrong

 

As moms, we need to be sure of our calling and stand firm in our role as mothers. We are shaping the next generation and it's not something to take lightly. Not only because of future generations but because our children need to be properly equipped to remain strong in their faith in Jesus as they encounter the world. 

"If we're going to raise a generation of strong children, we must learn to engage our enemy rather than run from him." ~Heidi St. John, Becoming MomStrong

It's time we become Warrior Moms and fight for our children against the darkness in this world. God has given us this responsibility and no one can do it like He has equipped us to. 

I love how Heidi breaks down some of the most important aspects of motherhood and how to meet those challenges head-on. She offers real-life examples from her own experience of how she went through a season of surrender.

She explains throughout her book what being a "MomStrong" mom looks like.  Here are just a few:

  • They embrace the fact that they are loved by God and are precious to Him
  • They have uncommon courage because their courage comes from God Himself
  • They never lose sight of the goal of becoming
  • They don't trust in their own abilities but in a strong, sovereign God

Maybe you're not there yet...and that's okay!! That's exactly what Becoming MomStrong is all about!

Giveaway

Today I'm giving away TWO copies of Heidi's book: Becoming MomStrong: How to fight with all that's in you for your family & your faith.

All you need to do is leave a comment and share one weapon you're using to fight for your children.

My main weapon is PRAYER.

*U.S. residents only. Winner will be drawn on Black Friday!

I was given a free copy of Becoming MomStrong so I could have the privilege of sharing this review and giving away a couple copies. Please see my full disclosure here.

For His Glory,

Christin

The Promises of God Come With a Cost

While God does promise us eternal life, there are still conditions which we must meet in order to receive that promise.

God makes us some pretty amazing and remarkable promises throughout His Word. He promises to be faithful, to be our strength, to never fail us or abandon us, and to guide us--just to name a few. As a mom who is raising children to live for Christ, these are promises I cling to. There is no greater mission field than my home while my children are living there and under my care.

But did you also know that many of His promises don't come without specific conditions being met first? Such as the promise of everlasting life. While God does promise us eternal life, there are still conditions which we must meet in order to receive that promise.

1. We must confess we have sinned. (Romans 10:9)

2. We must repent of our sin (by leaving the sinful life behind). (Acts 3:19)

3. We must believe in Christ's death and resurrection. (Romans 10:9; Mark 16:16)

4. We must work out our salvation. (Philippians 2:12-13)

These are not comfortable conditions. While they will indeed set us free, being faced with our own sin is painful and then leaving behind those things we've grown accustomed to doing is also a sacrifice. Furthermore, working out our salvation by allowing Jesus to mold our hearts and purge out the ugly is not a pleasant process. There are many things He will require of us as we grow in righteousness and most of them are not comfortable.

These conditions require molding the heart and as the heart is molded, our actions should follow.

If we are not moved with compassion for the hurting or lost, then we need to pray for God to remove our heart of stone and give us a heart of flesh. (Ezekiel 36:26)

We find our comforts in many worldly things:

  • Money
  • Food
  • Entertainment
  • A Comfortable Home
  • A Nice Car
  • A Rewarding Job
  • Shopping
  • Freedom
  • A Good Education
  • Books/Podcasts/Blogs/Information
  • Pastors/Evangelists/Bible Teachers/Christian Leaders

When we have all these comforts to rely on, where do we have room to rely on God? Where does God fit into a life that seems to have it all? I find this question of particular interest to Americans.

God's Word is consistent about telling us to deny ourselves (Luke 9:23), put others before ourselves (Philippians 2:3), honor others first (Romans 12:10), and love each other deeply (1 Peter 1:22).

The Bible also communicates at great length about serving God (Matthew 4:10), serving others (1 Peter 4:10), and giving to the poor (Matthew 19:21).

As I've pondered living the comfortable life, I noticed many people deem it as "the blessings of God". Indeed, God does bless us with some comforts...some. But they are never meant to be hoarded or take the place of God in reliance.

I'm reminded of Solomon, whom God not only blessed with wisdom, but also riches. He told Solomon that...

"If you walk before Me as your father David walked, and do according to all that I have commanded you, and if you keep My statutes and My judgments, then I will establish the throne of your kingdom..." ~2 Chronicles 7:17-18

God's promise here was made on an "if" condition Solomon had to follow. God made another promise to Solomon if he turned away from God:

"But if you turn away and forsake My statutes and My commandments which I have set before you, and go serve other gods, and worship them, then I will uproot them from My land which I have given them; and this house [the Temple] which I have sanctified for My name I will cast out of My sight, and will make it a proverb and a byword among all peoples."
~2 Chronicles 7:19-20

The more comfortable I become, the more uncomfortable it makes me. It reminds me I'm not in a place God can use me because I'm too caught up in my own satisfaction.

Being a disciple comes with great cost. But it also comes with a desire to serve God in a greater capacity. The more you seek God, the more you'll willingly give up to serve Him.

But remember, as you seek out the promises of God and claim them, often they don't come without a cost or sacrifice. God wants to take you deeper and that often requires letting go of our own desires and stepping out into uncertainty--which is often very uncomfortable. But He is always there with you.

For His Glory,

Christin Slade

4 Goals for the Purposeful Homemaker

How can we keep our homes running smoothly without getting overwhelmed? Start small...

I look around my home and recognize a great need for order My house is not cluttered (I am so anti-clutter). I would consider it to be a bit unorganized and just plain messy. Granted, I have 7 children and I don't expect my house to look like a museum. It ought to look lived in, but it should be orderly.

In addition, meal times are chaotic and often left "unfinished". Dishes left undone, table not completely cleared, floor not swept.

First, I want to clearly define what a homemaker is: A homemaker is a person who manages the household of her own family. (dictionary.com)

A household is defined as the people of a house collectively (dictionary.com)

The Bible defines our role as homemakers in a couple of places [that I found]: [to set] about her work vigorously (Proverbs 31:17) ...to be busy at home (Titus 2:5) (NIV)

Defining exactly what we are to do helps clarify our purpose. So not only does a homemaker care for the house, but for her family. That opens several more doors of possibilities (and responsibilities), doesn't it? So coupling the above definitions with the needs of my own family, here is my purpose as a homemaker:

To be attentive to the needs of my family, diligent in creating a 'home', and consistent in the everyday essentials. To serve with joy, purpose, ambition and gratitude.

In a more expanded version, my purpose requires that I attend to the needs of my home and family, that I am active (intentional) about creating a home, and that I work constantly at those things that need to be done every-single-day. I intend to do these things with joy, aim, initiative, and thanksgiving.

My goals include [but are not limited to]: to wake up before my children, to create smooth and memorable meal times, follow more closely to my schedule, and be intentional about creating an atmosphere of peace.

As these goals are met, new ones will develop. They are rather specific compared with my purpose. My purpose will generally stay the same.

Perhaps it's a bit simplistic--and that's exactly the point. I don't want anything too complex or too hard to reach for. As it stands, this is challenge enough for me. :)

Here I will expound on my goals and the steps I will take to get there.

Goals:

To wake up before my children

This is probably one of the most important tools [for me] to running a smooth household. I have seen, consistently, what a difference this makes. It takes me some time to "wake up" and I really need to do this before the children are awake so that I am ready for them. Otherwise, I am dragging my feet, making them wait on me. Apparently, one of my "famous" lines is, "Mommy can't even see straight yet." One of my children used to ask me when I wake up if "my eyes were still blind".

  • spend time in prayer and journaling
  • begin VA {Virtual Assistant} work
  • get dressed and ready for the day

Most of this is easy. The hard part is getting out of bed.

To create smooth and memorable meal times

Meal times are one of my biggest challenges. Everything from being prepared with a menu, to having a tidy kitchen to work in. I tend to rush food out and leave the cleaning for "later". Later comes when it's time for the next meal. Who wants to work in a kitchen like that?! Not me! So, it's time to do something about it. Here are the steps--which are just mini-goals--to get me at this place:

  • menu plan
  • serve buffet style (everything on table), rather than serving each child individually from the stove/counter
  • Read Scripture before or after the meal (while seated at the table)
  • Have everyone take part in kitchen clean-up--dirty dishes to sink, table cleaned off, floor swept, load dishwasher
  • Do my part and clean up counters, stove, sink, etc; have kitchen and dining room ready for next meal.

During meal times I want to have fruitful conversations about life. Create memories, talk about God's goodness and pray for others in need.

Follow my schedule more closely

Yes, I have struggled with this since day one. But when I do follow closely to my schedule, the day is bliss! I feel accomplished because I have gotten done [even some] of what I set out to do. It gives me a sense of fulfillment when I follow my schedule. So this is an important area for me. The question is, how will I accomplish this feat? I go back to my purpose and be consistent in the everyday essentials.

  • Start with the basics. Follow the schedule for meals and bed time routines.
  • Reorganize tasks to fit into the best time slots and work through them
  • Slowly add in another task -- one every 2-4 weeks -- ones that are not being accomplished, currently
  • Be consistent. Set hand to the plow.

My fear has been that life will get too redundant, so I resist the schedule. But you know what? I feel myself craving it as the days flutter by with little to show. Ann Voskamp said that fear is nothing to be afraid of--it's just the door we push through to get to the other side.

Be intentional about creating an atmosphere of peace

This was a tough when I had 5 children, 4 of them 5 and under. There was a lot of chaos, whining, screaming, fighting...whatever. That was life. They were in training and were learning, but in the mean time, I was stressed listening to it. In fact, I tended to react as a result.  Don't know if one can ever get used to the chaos.  Now that my kids are older, we have chaos of a different kind. But I need train myself to stop reacting and be proactive on how to cut down on the issues.

  • keep to my schedule, which will cut down on some of this issue
  • teach peacemaking before a problem arises (Young Peacemaker is an excellent resource)
  • have "face time" with each of my children daily (1-on-1 time with each child)
  • don't allow too much free time

This will be a start. Once I put these into practice on a regular, consistent basis I can reevaluate the situation to see if further action needs to be taken.

By no means will I be able to tackle all these goals at once. It will be an ongoing process, probably for months before it becomes more "second nature". But now that I have a clear direction of what my purpose is and some definite needs to fill, I have plenty to do.

Homemaking is not meant to be easy. We can simplify it, but it is still a very challenging role. Resisting and trying to work against our role will only result in more challenges and frustrations. Instead, let's embrace this role so we are free to own it and live it out.

This post contains affiliate links. Please read my full disclosure here.

Why It's Critical to Feed Your Spiritual Life Daily

Just a few reasons why we need to seek God daily to keep our spiritual lives strong and always focused on Him.

I see it all the time. Christians are worn down, not just physically, but spiritually. We are fighting battles we are not equipped to fight. We've lost joy, purpose, and are always focused on our circumstances; allowing them to dictate where we put our faith and our level of love and trust in God.

Serving God Shouldn't Be Circumstantial

If things aren't going well, we think God is out to get us or we are being punished for some past sin. We are worn out from the struggle and don't know what to do next. But this isn't the way a Christian was ever meant to live. I'm not suggesting our lives are always going to go the way we want. But God has given us Himself and rarely do we see Him as enough. Rarely do we go to Him on a daily basis (not just when things get bad) to ask for strength, wisdom, and a pouring out of Himself on us.

When things are going well, we think we have it all handled, so what need is there for God? What purpose do we have going to Him when our life is going well? Why bother with the Bible when we think we have the answers--the solutions that sound good and logical?

But the problem is, God isn't just a God of our circumstances. He is the Creator of our very beings...everything we have, everything we are, everything we've become, and everything we've been forgiven comes from God. He doesn't want to just be Lord of our circumstances. He wants to be Lord of our lives. Our whole lives.

Here's a handful of reasons why we need to seek God daily to keep our spiritual lives strong and always focused on Him. This is by no means exhaustive and are in no particular order.

1. To Mature and Grow as Christians

Sadly, I see a lot of Christians who don't even know God's word on popular issues today. People falsely believe that God will have the same ideas as them because they see their ideas as "good and logical".

There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.
Proverbs 14:12 ESV

Reading God's Word daily ensures we know the Truth about what is good and acceptable and holy. This is God's desire for us as His children. Then we need to live it out.

As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”
1 Peter 1:14-16

2. To Build an Intimate Relationship With Christ

There are a lot of people who speak for Jesus without hardly knowing Him at all. Going back to the above point...we often believe that because we believe a certain way that Jesus does, too, and frequently that isn't the case.

We cannot know Jesus if we never get on our faces before Him, deny ourselves and what we think we believe, and give ourselves to Him. This isn't about head knowledge. It's about walking in the Spirit.

But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.
Galatians 5:16

We cannot know Jesus if we never get on our faces before Him, deny ourselves, and what we think we believe. -Christin Slade

 

It's also about understanding our deep need for Him. Without Jesus, we cannot do anything. We are sinners who are lost and separated from God. Believing in Him is not enough for salvation.

You say you have faith, for you believe that there is one God. Good for you! Even the demons believe this, and they tremble in terror.
James 2:19 NLT

Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.
Philippians 2:12-13 ESV

Once we recognize our deep need for Jesus and His work on the cross, we are compelled to act. It's a deep work of the heart from the Spirit that moves us to action. If you have not yet experienced that work, I urge you to get before God and pray for that revelation and heart-work. It is necessary to for intimacy with Christ.

3. To Suit Up for Battle

When soldiers train, they don't typically do it on the battlefield. They do it before heading to the battlefield. (Though history shows that hasn't always been the case--but the results were catastrophic).

We need to learn to arm ourselves and use those weapons before we actually require them. We are in a spiritual war--constantly. We need to know how to fight off the attacks of the Enemy. The lies, the deception, the discouragement, the temptations. Satan is always prowling around, poking at our weaknesses, looking to gain a foothold in our lives.

When we aren't armed with God's Word and seeking Him in prayer, we will be unable to successfully fight off these attacks.

It is crucial we recognize and understand our need for God, whether our lives are going well or not. God is not a God of circumstances, but of LIFE. And without Him, there is only death.

For His Glory,

Christin Slade

Recommended Resources