Tag Archives: parents


For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.  I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.  My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place.

-Psalm 139:13-15a

Most everybody knows and LOVES this verse.  I know it has been used to advocate for the unborn; I’ve used it that way myself.  While it speaks to the life that begins in the womb, it speaks beyond.  I remember thinking initially when Hayden was born, that he was perfect.  Ten perfect toes.  Perfect fingers that immediately grasped mine. That misconception was quickly killed.  I’ll never forget our shock when Hayden had that first “welcome to parenting” tarry black diaper that spilled over the sides as Jason and I (yes both of us) attempted to change him.  Jason went immediately to get the nurse; he jokes now that he thought Hayden was broken.  With each of our much adored children, we have had constant reminders that they’re not perfect, but they’re straight from God who has created them uniquely and according to his plan.  And that we can’t forget.


Diagnoses increase every year; new disorders are identified all the time. One disorder, dyslexia, has gained recognition over the last fifteen years. I have had the privilege of identifying and teaching intervention to students with dyslexia.  I never had the dream of teaching dyslexia, but twelve years ago I had a precious student who struggled learning to read and write.  He had a persistent and heart-broken mother who would stop at nothing to help him.  In my inadequacy and in fear of this mama bear who was confronting the problem, I found myself searching for the cause of his struggle and for ways to help him.  I won’t lie.  That was a rough year.  I will say though, that working with students with dyslexia, and their parents, has become a true passion of mine.  I hope to always convey some reality to those struggling with dyslexia:

  It doesn’t identify who you are.

  Though there is difficulty involved, don’t ignore the beauty that comes along with a brain that is wired differently. 

People with dyslexia are usually extraordinarily creative.  Their giftedness is many times overlooked. These children are often persistent, ambitious, curious, imaginative, with excellent reasoning; the list goes on.  The same is so with other disorders.

Going even further, whether it's dylexia ,or another disorder, a noticeable birthmark or being extraordinarily tall- those who are viewed as dissimilar are at times rejected or even pitied.    They are viewed as a spectacle; or sometimes face feeling isolated and ignored.   The way people stare and what we imagine people are thinking can get the best of us.  Whether we are discreet and secretive of our child’s difference, or we are angry at the world demanding everyone accept our child for the way she is, or both- the simple but vital question remains.

Is the way we view our child’s difference, in light of God’s good and perfect word? 

I’ve come to dislike the word disorder. One of my children has been diagnosed twice with a disorder.  I want to be familiar with the struggles that may come along with that diagnosis, and with ways to help my child, but it will not overwhelm who my child is.  She has ADHD.  He has Aspergers.  He has Bipolar Disorder.   To say that a child has a disorder can insinuate there was a malfunction in his ordering or in his formation; like something went wrong.

When we say along with the Psalm, I am wonderfully made; does that just refer to our parts which seem normal or like everybody else?

When God says he “knit us together” and that our frame “was not hidden from {him}” do we believe that; do we know it “full well”?

We may wonder what we did wrong or didn’t do right.  Or we blame God.

 Could it possibly be, that we what we see as different or label a disorder, God sees as having beautiful purpose?

My children are so diverse.  Hallie has a large space bubble; only few are welcomed inside.  I think the first sentence we taught her was "I need my space".  Hayden, on the other hand, wants to touch EVERYTHING. I have his permission in telling you all of this. When he was younger, I had to watch to make sure he didn’t touch the cake at a wedding.  He wanted to touch other people’s food.  One time at HEB he ran his hand along a shelf of small potted plants sending them to the floor, spilling everywhere.  I’ve been embarrassed at times, and other times angry, like the time someone criticized his touching all the cookies saying he put his germs on them.

I remember a specific moment when we were checking out at Wal-Mart, not that many years ago.  As my purchases were being sacked, I noticed Hayden lifting up the conveyor belt and looking under it touching what was underneath.  The lady behind us stared.  But at that moment, I felt God whisper that it was ok.  I began to think that maybe God created him to touch.  I can’t recall how many times his hug or an awkward arm around my shoulder has reminded me that I am loved as his mother.   He’s crafted some meaningful, beautiful gift with those hands. I’ve come to a thankful place where I believe God uses that gift of touch. It was in his plan all along.  God will use those hands to touch lives.  Though those hands will not always find themselves in God’s will, I will commit them to God’s use-he's the one who designed them.

If you’re still reading, you are maybe thinking of someone you know who has faced rejection because they didn't look, act or perform similar to those around them. You probably love someone who has been diagnosed with a disorder. Along with disorders and distinct differences comes struggle, I understand this.  But diversity is divine.

The child with Cerebral palsy is not like the other children.  He is not even like the other children with Cerebral Palsy.

  He is the perfectly- woven- together creation of God; knitted in unique fashion.

If those around us are to see that all children are marvelously made, we need to believe it ourselves.  You have been called to be that parent.  You have been called to pray for that parent.

Let’s ask God to help us in our struggle, be thankful for our difference, and to truly see the beauty that was made in the secret place


Pictured above:  This is a picture I got to snap playing with some girls in an orphanage in Kenya-one of the BEST times of my life.

 Are you the perfect daughter?  Answer these questions honestly.  If you don't have, say a brother or sister, answer the brother/sister questions by answering how you think you would react.


When I’m asked to clean my room, I:

A.Ask if my brother has to clean his

B.Clean it halfway, stuffing things under the bed

C.They don’t have to ask, I keep it clean

D.I whine, then clean it

2When your mom asks you to change your shirt, you

A.Roll your eyes then change it

B.Ask why

C.Change your shirt immediately

D.Beg her to let you wear it

3Your sister tries to get you in trouble every day, you:

A.Finally decide not to talk to her anymore

B.Think about revenge

C.Pray first asking God’s help.  Then talk to your sister or mom about it.

D.Start telling on her for every little thing she does-see how she likes it

4You know your mom’s going to be upset because you made a really bad grade on your math paper, you:

A.Hide the paper

B.Remind her that grandma told you that your mom was really bad in math too

C.Tell her you’ll try to do better and mean it

D.Tell her how half the class did worse than you

5When your dad tells you to put the magazine away, you say:

A.It’s not a magazine

B.Ok. Just a minute.

C.Yes sir.

D.Why do I have to?  It’s not my bedtime.

6Your most common reaction to getting in trouble is to:

A.Roll your eyes


C.Think to yourself my parents probably know what they’re doing



7Mom feels bad.  You :

A.Use the time she’s napping to steal away extra TV time

B.Fight with your brother

C.Try and think of something you can do to help

D.Wake her up because you can’t find a snack

8Your dad has wrongly accused you of leaving your shoes in the yard, you:

A.Tell your mom he’s being unfair


C.Remember that everybody makes mistakes.  Pick up the shoes. Then you tell him that your sister borrowed them and left them outside.

D.Get them. Throw them in your room and pout.

9The thing you do concerning your brother/sister most often:



C.Pray for


Easy Score Scale:

All C’s-  You are the DAUGHTER OF THE YEAR!!!  I would love for you to come stay at my house for a week to tutor my kids.  But seriously, ALL C's?  Nobody's that good.

Not all C’s- You are like most precious daughters I know; you have room to improve.  Be thankful for your family.  Be forgiving.   Obey your parents even when you don’t agree.  Remember that arguing, eye-rolling, sighing, tattling and pouting are reactions that come easily and automatically.  Pray for God’s help when it is hard to be that loving sister or that respectful daughter that God has designed you to be.

Oh I wish I was there with you to see your answers.  Please let me know how you did!

One more thing!  -Don't forget to check out the Family Contract and Lovely List Family Project (to be posted soon)!! It will be under the QUIZZES AND QUESTIONS and DEVOTION POSTS categories.



At a recent Mom’s prayer meeting we were praying for a couple of moms who were having difficulty getting their kiddos into the car-seat without a struggle.   I remember those frustrating days.  I also remember momentarily feeling some instant freedom when my children were out of car-seats and could buckle themselves in.  But as I was praying with these moms I was overcome with sadness.  My kids aren’t car-seat babies anymore.  And while I don’t have to buckle them in, I CAN’T buckle them in anymore.

Hayden will be sixteen in six months.  I won’t always be able to be in the car to tell him to slow down a little quicker when approaching an intersection.  Soon when he is finding that special someone, I don’t get to tell him she’s not enough like me.  Hallie recently shared a secret with a friend.  When I asked her to share it with me she said NO!  In the last couple of years some tears have been shed.  I haven’t always been next to Hallie, tissue in hand, there to hug her.  When Rylie is at school reading and she comes to a word she doesn’t know, I’m not there to sound the word out with her part by part.  I have lunch with her at school every Monday while volunteering.  Are they always going to let me do that?   Is she always going to WANT me to do that?  The awful part is, physically and later geographically, the distance will grow as time goes on.

I am thankful that even though my children are growing tall and independent, they still lavish me with hugs.  Hayden still puts his arm around me at church. Rylie still crawls in our bed occasionally in the morning.  Hallie, our most independent child, spends special girl time just with me once a week.  And they all still sometimes hold my hand.


While in the car alone this evening, I heard a song.  Instantly I thought of my children. There are times when they will face trials and feel alone. There have already been those times. There are times when I can’t be there; times I can’t fix it- I would if I could. There are times I’ve been the one to let them down.  I am more than grateful that I have the blessed assurance that God IS there.  The God who sees is with Hayden when he takes that frightening Math test.  He is with Hallie when she sits alone.  He is right beside Rylie in Sunday School as she is learning who he is.


I’m a little jealous that God sees and knows their every step.  He has stolen their hearts, but how can I complain when he has given me eternity with him and with them.  I pray that every day on this side of eternity this song would be the song of their heart:

Click here:  all this time

My phone wouldn't upload this video.  If you have the same problem you can go to the youtube link and search- All This Time Britt Nicole




 Well, yesterday I went to the dentist.  Even the word dentist makes me nervous.  I’m not exactly sure why I have such a dislike for going to the dentist because it usually ends up not being as bad as I imagined.  In fact, most visits I’ve made were pretty much pain-free.  The dentist who checked my teeth and the lady who cleaned my teeth were super friendly.  I thought they could tell I was one of those patients that needed some calm reassurance.  I’ve wondered before if the folder they have with my name and dental record has a brightly colored sticker on front warning- “special (hard to work with) patient”!  Am I the only one who feels this way?

     I brushed my teeth twice as long and flossed extra good in the morning.  I wanted to make sure my teeth looked dazzling.  I also wanted to ensure that there wasn’t much work that they would have to do.  I ‘m a pretty good girl.  I brush and floss daily though I doubt I’d get an “A+” on my teeth care report card.  Truth be known, I don’t brush after every meal.  And even though I make sure and brush the front and back, down low and every gum line, it doesn’t make up for the times that I don’t brush.  I should also mention that I didn’t go to the dentist for six years.   So, in some ways I’m doing great, in other ways-UTTER FAILURE!

      While I was lying back in the dentist chair I tried to distract myself.  I could see the giant metal hook scraping my teeth moving back and forth.  (It’s easy to notice when it’s right between your eyes!).  So I tried closing my eyes, but the sound has got to be just as bad.  It equals nails scratching a chalkboard.  I had decided at this time I should try and think about how even this moment was in God’s hands.  And immediately I began to think about sin.  Yes, sin.  You see plaque, the sticky film that forms on our teeth naturally, is bad for our teeth.  It can harden and cause tooth decay and gum disease.  While we can brush and floss, it is necessary to go the dentist regularly to have it removed.  And like sin, plaque can be hidden in places where we don’t see it.  It often takes a professional to see the “plaque” and remove it.  Though my mouth is often tender after having my teeth cleaned, I know that my hygienist is preventing bigger problems in the future.  Likewise, when God is helping us rid ourselves of some sin in our life it may be uncomfortable.  I can think of a particular time growing up I was caught in a lie.  My cousin and I were cleaning my aunt’s living room with a friend.  While vacuuming I stepped on a lamp cord and my aunt’s beautiful glass lamp hit the floor shattering into pieces.  My friend saw what happened, but blamed my cousin.  That lie worked in my favor so I went along with the story that it was my cousin’s fault.  My aunt knew we were lying and sent us home.  That was so embarrassing!  Looking back, I know that it was a good thing that I was caught in that lie. It hurt my aunt and my cousin and maybe even my friend who knew I was a Christian. Would I have even thought twice about that lie had my aunt not revealed it?   Even more sad are the hidden sins I’ve committed; sins I’ve held onto with an exhausting grip.  Like plaque that hides beneath the surface, sin quietly grows and eats away at our peace.  God wants us to have peace. And though sometimes the process is uncomfortable he offers to clean up our “sticky” situations.

  Even as a child you know the rules.  Don’t lie.  Be kind.  Don’t be jealous.  And most of the time I bet you follow the rules pretty well.  Does it seem like the one time you break a rule there is an adult there to catch you?  You heard me say catch right?  When you’ve done something wrong it’s easy to feel like an animal caught in a net with nowhere to run.  I want you to picture getting caught differently.  Picture someone falling from a height with nowhere to go but down.  That person wants to be caught.  God has put our parents and other adults in our life as our safety net.  They are in our life and in our business to help us rid ourselves of what isn’t good for us.  You’re fighting with your sister and your parents get on to you?  Just maybe they’re thinking of what’s best for you. (Thank you mom and dad!). Next time I go to the dentist and they’re in my face and in my space I intend to grin and bear it.  And when I have a beautiful smile to show for it, I will remember the ones who patiently worked with me and be thankful. 

1.Can you remember a time when you were caught doing wrong?

How did it make you feel?  Angry?  Guilty?  Sad?  Disappointed?  Mistreated?


2. Who are some people God has placed in your life to guide you and correct you?


Listen to this prayer and say amen if you agree.


Dear God,

We know that we are not perfect.  And we know that there is no perfect adult.  But we know that you have placed adults in our lives to guide us.  Help our moms and dads, grandparents and teachers, coaches and other adults to listen and trust you so they will be able to lead us to you.  Even when adults seem unfair, help us to be obedient.  Help us to know that you will bless our faithfulness to obey.  And help us to always remember that you want every part of us; good and bad.  There is nothing that we should hide from our parents.  And there is nothing we could hide from you.  Most of all, help us remember that by knowing you “neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of (you) God”

 (Romans 8:39)