Grace and Truth ~ Becoming a Titus 2 Woman

I’m getting older.  There is no doubt about it…although, several weeks ago, a sweet elderly lady told me that I did not look ‘old enough’ to have a 16-year old.  She was shocked when I told her I am 43.  She is now my most favorite person on the face of this earth!  I learned so much over my 20+ years of adulthood…and I’m not even half way through my adult years (that’s CRAZY!).  I am finding myself transitioning into the ‘older woman’ zone – offering wisdom and advice more often than getting (yes, I still need advice and wisdom – and thankfully I have some even older women in my life whom I can trust to give me Godly wisdom and advice).

We are called to make disciples.  The best way to make disciples is to be in relationship with others.  To be in relationship with others means that we have to actually spend quality time with them, being vulnerable and transparent.  And this is really the essence of the Titus 2 woman.  Us ‘older women’ have the responsibility to teach the younger woman and the younger women have a responsibility of learning from the older women.  Because I understand the importance of the Titus 2 woman, I really appreciated Melissa’s post, Becoming a Titus 2 Woman, on her blog Humble Faith Family Wellness.  I chose her post as my feature this week.  Please head on over to her site and read her wonderful post.

Melissa, please be sure to grab this “I’ve Been Featured” image below and add it, with a link to this page, to your post so that your readers can celebrate with you!  Simply right click the image and save it to your computer. Grace and Truth Link-up https://aimeeimbeau.com Now for this week’s link up!  Let’s bless and encourage one another in our walk with the Lord. Read More

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6 Essential Ways You Can Build Unity Within The Church

As the final details settled into place, our excitement grew.  We’d be moving to a new town (albeit only 20 minutes away), a new home, a new neighborhood…and a new church.  Over the last few months before the move, Marcus and I talked about visiting several different churches in our new town so we could get a feel for where we were to attend.  One of our top priorities was a place where our kids felt safe and cared for.  We had visions of experiencing several different churches and then choosing from that list of abundance where we would settle.  Well, it didn’t happen that way at all.  Has that ever happened to you?  You make all of these awesome plans, but then they get thwarted by someone’s bigger plan?  Yeah.  That’s pretty much what happened.  We were distracted by our own ideas and plans.  We forgot something important – something vital to the church – we were meant to build unity.  I figured I wasn’t the only one who forgot this wonderful plan of God’s, so I compiled this special list: 6 Essential Ways You Can Build Unity Within The Church.

Our desire to attend something can undermine God’s bigger plan for the church. Changing the way we look at church is vital to fulfilling His Master Plan. We need to remember that this is our family, and with family, comes responsibility. 6 Essential Ways You Can Build Unity Within The ChurchWe visited a total of 2 churches.  That’s it.  2. 

Oh, there were plenty of options.  So many churches to choose from.  However, on our way home one Sunday morning, I started to cry.  My heart was missing something.  A home.  My heart was missing a home.  A place to gather with other believers and do life together.  Now, don’t get me wrong.  I don’t think there is anything wrong with testing out a variety of churches to get a feel for where God wants you to be.  I think that’s a very healthy thing to do.  But, when God calls you to be faithful to one family, then it is best to heed that call.  And that’s what He was doing that Sunday morning.  Thankfully, when I expressed my feelings to Marcus, he was in complete agreement.  We were unified in this decision.  

Here are the 6 Essential Ways You Can Build Unity Within The Church that we have learned.

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Grace and Truth ~ 10 Valentine’s Day Bible Verses + Free Printables

Valentine’s Day is next week!  Do have any special plans?  For Christmas, I gave our family a binder with a year of family dates – this month’s date is on Valentine’s Day and I am making a Cupid Cafe.  Each child will get a menu and order the menu items.  They will not know what each code word item is until it comes to the table for them.  I am really excited about this date!  I do like Valentine’s Day.  I don’t like all of the commercialism – and my husband will say that he doesn’t like someone telling him what day he can love me (if he was really honest, he’d just say he doesn’t like being told what to do, period!).  But I like the idea of taking the time to focus on love.  Especially since God is love.  And shouldn’t we all celebrate His love on the 14th – and every day?  But if you need a bit more help in celebrating V-Day with your guy, I have some ideas here.  And the Dating Divas always have some fun ideas.

When I saw Joy’s post, 10 Valentine’s Day Bible Verses + Free Printables, I knew I was going to love it.  What better way to kick off the day with God’s word and being affirmed in His love for us?  Plus, I LOVED the printables for the kids!  And the “Love Never Fails” printable is gorgeous.  Head on over to her site to be reminded of God’s love and get a collections of special printables.

Joy, please be sure to grab this “I’ve Been Featured” image below and add it, with a link to this page, to your post so that your readers can celebrate with you! Grace and Truth Link-up https://aimeeimbeau.com Now for this week’s link up!  Let’s bless and encourage one another in our walk with the Lord. Read More

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The Simple But Remarkable Purpose Of The Church

The house was dilapidated and run down. It was clear that this house had seen better days. But those days were long gone. I was certain that no one had inhabited that lonely house for at least a decade. No one maintained the structure and the signs of neglect were apparent. I bet that the contractor of this house never intended for this home to be vacant.  I wonder if he had visions of families loving each other and caring for one another within the walls of that home. Because that is what a home is designed for, right? Homes are never built to sit empty. Families are meant to dwell in homes. This is the same for us. For our faith. But we sure like to complicate things, don’t we? We need to understand The Simple But Remarkable Purpose Of The Church.

Do you ever wonder why we need the church? Too often all we see is all out war within the church, so really, what’s the point? Maybe we need to look beyond our own selfishness to see His purpose for His church. Maybe then we will truly get it. The Simple But Remarkable Purpose Of The Church.God has been constructing us, building us up into the people He longs for us to be.  And we were not created to be alone.  He created us to be in a family.  In the family of God.  Our churches, the houses of God, are meant to have people living in them.  Yes, I know the church building is just a building and that we are the Church.  But it’s the living people that make the church what it is…or what it is supposed to be: Read More

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Grace and Truth ~ An Unexpected Divorce Court Detour Saved Our Failed Marriage

Those first several years of marriage were super hard.  My expectations were high.  I believed that Marcus would ‘complete me’ (WOW – what a HUGE responsibility and burden to place on another human!).  I thought he’d save me and make me happy.  My attitude and contentment were dependent upon him.  How wrong I was.  Very, very wrong.  

God had to help me make a lot of changes in my heart and in my life.  When I started being the Godly wife He desired me to be, He started working on my husband.  If there is one piece of truth I’d love to share with women on the verge of marriage, it is that.  Do the work to become the Godly woman and wife God intends you to be.  

When I read Sheila’s post on Candidly Christian, her story resonated with my heart.  An Unexpected Divorce Court Detour Saved Our Failed Marriage is a story of hope for marriage.  Head on over to the site and read her post.

Sheila, please be sure to grab this “I’ve Been Featured” image below and add it, with a link to this page, to your post so that your readers can celebrate with you! Grace and Truth Link-up https://aimeeimbeau.com Now for this week’s link up!  Let’s bless and encourage one another in our walk with the Lord. Read More

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5 Practical Ways The Church Can Help The Single Parent

Hey, friends!  I have something very special in store for you today!  One of my regular readers, Abby, has written a very special post for me.  She shares her heart and tackles a topic that I don’t have experience in.  But it is one that desperately needs to be shared!  I have gained insight and understanding on how to help those in my church who have some of the greatest needs.  I am so thankful that she chose LIFE – in more ways than one.  And I am so thankful that she found a church home that loves her and her son the way the Church should.  Please welcome Abby here and leave her an encouraging comment at the end of her post!  Here are 5 Practical Ways The Church Can Help The Single Parent.

Are you unsure of how to minster to the single parent families in your church? Or just in your circle? Sharing the love of Christ is so much simpler than we tend to think – we just make everything so complicated! Here are 5 Practical Ways The Church Can Help The Single Parent

One topic that I see is relatively untouched in Christian circles is the single parent. I personally know the struggle of being both a Christian and a single parent as well as having seen others struggle with this. There are many types of parents in this situation including those never married, divorced, or those who are widowed or choose to adopt while they do not have a spouse. I am going to mainly be addressing single parents like me that have never been married.  However, all of this can be applied to any single parent within the church.

When my son was conceived, I was engaged, but that relationship did not last. I share that as my background so that you understand everything I share next. Often single parents are starting over in multiple ways one of which can be with God. The church can be instrumental in showing God’s love to them and in building them and their children up. These are the 5 Practical Ways The Church Can Help The Single Parent.  I learned these truths through firsthand experience in my own church.

1. Accept

Remember, if this is the case, someone else’s sin does not change how we are supposed to treat them. If Jesus has forgiven them after they have repented do what He commanded in Mark 12:30-31, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” (NIV). Also, Romans 14:13 states, “Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister.”

In my case, I started coming to my church two days after finding out I was expecting and already knowing I would be a single, unwed mother. I knew my old church would not accept me back. I had repented of my selfishness and my sinful nature. When I sought membership at my new church, my pastor simply asked if I had confessed and repented. I told the truth and he said there would never be a problem in our church, and there has been nothing but love.

2. Encourage Them To Get Involved

Do not assume that they are too busy to be an active member of God’s body. Come alongside them and let them help. After I became a member I started helping with Vacation Bible School in a minor role. My son and I were in church the day after we were released from the hospital, even after a very traumatic birth. I wanted and needed to be with my church family. I dedicated my son a few months later.

They also helped me successfully complete an internship through them to become a Christian counselor. I am still involved in the children’s program as well. My church has never once made me feel excluded from being involved or forced me to be. They invite me to do numerous things both in and outside the church, and in doing so they attach my heart and my son’s more and more to them and our church home.

3. Give Generously Of Time, Prayer, And Means

If you have the resources and you see the single parent struggling please help them, even with just prayers. I sincerely believe the only reason my son and I survived his birth is that my church family was praying for us. During my labor people in the church woke up and not seeing an announcement of birth yet on Facebook, they prayed. At 3 am when they could have ignored the call and went back to bed they hit their knees. That’s love! In the beginning of that pregnancy and all throughout it there were numerous complications.

On top of that, these children of God have given us a tote full of food and clothes, two love offerings, and gave my mom a temporary nursery job because I was still unable to go back to work from the complications I had. They often ask if we have holiday plans, if we need anything, ask me how we are, and bake for us as well. Hebrews 13:16 says, “And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.” Another great passage is 1 John 3:17, “If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person?”

4. Shower Them With Love

Love them and their child! This one should be easy! If you show these single parents and their children the love of God, they will never leave the church. Children with single parents struggle enough, they need to know that God loves them. Most children view God as an abstract thought.  If they see people come in His name with love that child will connect that God is love.

Proverbs 22:6 states: “Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.”

For my son’s first birthday nearly everyone from our church came. We had more church family than our biological family or our friends there! My church sister and two of my best friends did not let me lift a finger during the party. They took over and refilled supplies.  These wonderful friends did all the “behind the scenes” work that most moms get stuck doing.  I was free to celebrate my son. They will never realize what that help meant to my soul. These wonderful church people do not see my son as any less than the son of a two-parent family and they love me also.

5. Build Each Other Up

Encourage each other! Not just the single parent but all your church family! I cannot tell you how good it feels deep in my heart and soul when an amazing mother (honestly she is my Christian mom goal) tells me I am a good momma. Ephesians 4:29 sums this up perfectly, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.”

1 Thessalonians 5:11 also encourages us to build one another up. Let’s face it, this world will beat us up enough. If our family, our church family, stands as one, builds with one another, and loves each other nothing can stop us!

Above All, Point To Jesus

Always know that you never anticipate who is starting their walk with God over or who is stumbling. If the single parent comes to your church welcome them as you would anyone else. Involve them as much as they want to be involved. Love them and their child and build a relationship based on that love. Remember, the church members are to encourage one another and never be a stumbling block to each other. Be God’s trampoline that propels them to go higher in their relationship with Jesus instead of the boulder in front of them!

 

Thank you, Abby, for writing this wonderful and helpful post on how we can nurture, encourage, and support single-parent families.  Readers, is there anything else that you would add to this list?  If you are or were a single parent, what things did you find most helpful?  

Are you unsure of how to minster to the single parent families in your church? Or just in your circle? Sharing the love of Christ is so much simpler than we tend to think – we just make everything so complicated! Here are 5 Practical Ways The Church Can Help The Single Parent

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5 Ways To Make Sure Your Life Is Not All About Curb Appeal

I wanted out of there!  The awkwardness and tension were thick as molasses in December.  I felt out of place.  There was a sense of something deeper going on in this family, something toxic.  I couldn’t possibly know exactly what it was, but I felt it.  I could not get out of that house fast enough.  Do you know what I’m talking about?  From the outside, the home looks beautiful.  The lawn is perfectly manicured.  The flowers are in full bloom without any dead foliage (not like my flower bed!). Everything is meticulous.  But once you step inside, it all changes.  They are spiritual hoarders.  It’s a complete mess and the spiritual smell is  – well – it’s just nasty.  Here are 5 Ways To Make Sure Your Life Is Not All About Curb Appeal.

Are you trying to clean up your act before coming to Jesus? Tired of striving for approval? Want to try God's grace and mercy instead? 5 Ways To Make Sure Your Life Is Not All About Curb Appeal

I’m sure we’ve all been in a home like that.  One where we just feel so uncomfortable and we can’t wait to escape.  But what about those homes you just love to visit?  How are they different?  In a spiritual sense, it always smells good.  The conversation is always encouraging.  It feels like you are a part of the family and you leave feeling nourished.  The heart of that house was amazing.  This is the goal for my home – when people leave, they want to return.  It has become one of my regular prayers that God will bless my home so that when people come over they will feel His peace.

God longs for us to build our lives His way.  He wants us to become the amazing women He intended us to be.  And this means making our hearts like the home mentioned in the paragraph above – full of His presence.  5 Ways To Make Sure Your Life Is Not All About Curb Appeal will help you understand how to have His presence in your life – resting in His grace and mercy.   Read More

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Grace and Truth ~ 5 Danger Zones Women in Ministry Need to Watch For

Being active in Women’s Ministry in a variety of ways, including leading WM in my church, I want to be aware and intentional about my serving.  I want to continue having the joy of serving in my calling.  So, I appreciate posts with tips on ensuring I keep my heart in the right place as I serve.

Jaime’s post is one of those articles.  I loved the 5 points she shared and I saw myself in some of them in previous areas of ministry.  And I know there is one I really need to keep in check right now (#2 – gotta maintain a balance while checking those blog stats!).  Head on over to Candidly Christian to read 5 Danger Zones Women in Ministry Need to Watch For.  

Jaime, please be sure to grab this “I’ve Been Featured” image below and add it, with a link to this page, to your post so that your readers can celebrate with you! Grace and Truth Link-up https://aimeeimbeau.com Now for this week’s link up!  Let’s bless and encourage one another in our walk with the Lord. Read More

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When God Needs to Look Under the Fluff

If you told me 10 years ago that I’d be blogging, I would’ve said ‘not a chance‘.  If someone said to me 15 years ago that one day I’d lead Women’s Ministry in an active and healthy church, I’d shake my head and tell you that it was not even remotely possible.  And mentoring women in marriage and Godly womanhood?  If someone even used those phrases in conversation to me 18 years ago, I would not have believed them.  I was too damaged.  Too broken.  Too much of a mess.  And yet, here I am.  Doing those things and more.  But God needed to look deeper.  This is for When God Needs to Look Under the Fluff.   

If we really want change in our lives. If we truly wish to become the amazing women God desires us to be, then we need to get to the heart. We must rid ourselves of the fluff and allow God to heal the broken. When God Needs to Look Under the Fluff.

Several years ago, before I had children and not long after Marcus and I married, I had the opportunity to have my church family pray for me.  Now, Marcus was not a believer at the time.  In fact, our marriage wasn’t all that great.  We were struggling.  But I was given a prophetic message during that time in prayer.  This is what was spoken to me: Read More

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Grace and Truth ~ Who Do We Pray To?

Prayer is one of my favorite topics.  Why?  Because it is what brought my husband to faith in Jesus Christ.  That’s not the only reason, of course, but it’s one of the biggest reasons.  You see, it wasn’t my nagging (wait, I don’t do that!), or my begging.  It wasn’t manipulation (oh, I would never try such a dreadful thing…umm…) or guilt trips.  Nope.  It was my prayers that moved the hand of God to convict my husband and draw him close to Himself.  

Prayer is also what has brought significant healing to this broken woman.  When I didn’t think I could take another breath…when I didn’t want to take another breath, it was my cries to God that sustained me.  

When my child fell into sin and I had no idea what to do, it was prayer that held me together.

That’s why I have chosen Rachel’s post, Who Do We Pray To?, as my feature post this week.  I love the reminder that sometimes we just need to get back to the basics of prayer.  Head on over to her site and read her post.

Rachel, please be sure to grab this “I’ve Been Featured” image below and add it, with a link to this page, to your post so that your readers can celebrate with you! Grace and Truth Link-up https://aimeeimbeau.com Now for this week’s link up!  Let’s bless and encourage one another in our walk with the Lord. Read More

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