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Emotions of a Stressed-out Housewife

This season has been stressful. I aint gonna lie.

As I previously posted, we started a HUGE addition on our home this summer. To say that it has been challenging would be an understatement. We have gone through so many emotions. Excited. Overwhelmed. Hopeful. Exhausted. Contemplative. Excited. And everything in between.

I think most seasons of life have these vast array of emotions. Not to say that these are necessarily a bad thing, but they can be daunting, nonetheless. However, I have learned as of late that these emotions can be good for you. Stretching. If you learn to “ARREST” them.

You see, I have often prided myself on not letting emotions dictate my reality. I have thought of this as a sort of strength. A “super-power”. But, When I sit back and look at all of the situations where I have allowed myself to push my emotions down, or disregard how I feel about something, inevitably, anger follows. At least eventually.

Perhaps it is all in how you look at it. I recently had a nice conversation with someone I love about the mind. How the mind has such a power over your heart. How when you focus on any one thing for too long, you become that thought. Although I fought that thought-process for a little while, I ultimately understood it. It’s true. What you think about, makes you who you are. How you feel. How you act.

I began to analyze where I was in my mind. I began to look at the thought processes that took hold of my thoughts and emotions. How I was letting my emotions (however pushed down I may place them in my heart), were actually dictating how I acted to everyone around me. How the lack of control on my mind was actually destroying my joy. Annihilating my ability to see the beauty in this season of my life. the beauty that God was TRYING to show me. I realized that I was too distracted with myself. That I had begun looking at all of MY “woes” and troubles, and it made me negative, frustrated and…stressed out. In the end, it brought me to a place of prayer, repentance, and ultimately…peace.

Peace. In the midst of chaos.

“For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as in the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” 2 Corinthians 10:3-6

The Word of God is so powerful. It so often hits home for me, and usually gets me out of the “rut” of self-doubt and personal struggles.

I believe when we “take every thought captive”, we can be liberated from our negative thinking and stress. We can take those thoughts of, “Everything is stressing me out”, or ” my kids are driving me nuts”, or “I can’t do one more day of dishes, laundry or cleaning”, and arrest it. We can literally say in our minds, “I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me,” and therefore…ARREST it.

You see, we can CHANGE our thinking. We can “arrest” those thoughts and send them packing!

Please don’t get me wrong…I struggle with this. I really do. I struggle every day to be obedient to Christ. My selfish side is strong, and I have to literally be constantly giving my mind over to God. My thoughts of frustration, anger, pride.

Being a housewife is no joke. Believe me, I could do anything I want with my life, but God has called me to be a stay-at-home mom. It is by far the hardest job I have had, or ever will have. But I tell you what…it requires a daily “pick up your cross” mentality. It requires constant service. Although I feel it is almost “un-natural” for me…I have decided in my mind (where it all starts), to do it to the best of my ability. To serve my husband and my kids with my best.

Do I fail often? Yes. Do I want to give up sometimes? Yes. Do I feel inadequate most of the time? Heck yes. But, with God on my side, and the ability to “cast my burdens on Christ”…I can, and I will do it!

So, with all that said, I pray that even one person can be encouraged to keep going. To continue to take every “stressed-out” thought or emotion and ARREST it. Send it packing through God’s strength. Because, it starts in our minds.

God Bless!

-Z

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Z's Opinions

It’s not about the Bunnies!

Happy Resurrection weekend! I pray that you have a blessed weekend, full of family and memories! I just wanted to present some research on the origins of Easter and how the traditions came about.

Have you ever wondered where the Easter Bunny came from? What about the eggs? Here is a very brief explanation of where some of our easter traditions came from, and WHAT we actually have to celebrate in this awesome season! Hope this short read blesses you!

The Origins of Easter

“According to various sources, the name Easter has its origin with a goddess of the Anglo-Saxons named Eostre (also Estre, Estara, Eastre, Ostara, and similar spellings in various sources). It is believed that she is the goddess of the dawn and was worshipped in the spring by pagans in Northern Europe and the British Isles. In The Two Babylons, Alexander Hislop claimed Eostre is actually a name derived from the Babylonian goddess Astarte. Hislop extended this connection to include goddesses from around the world: Ishtar, Ashtoreth, Venus, and others. In fact, Hislop argued that all of the systems of gods and goddesses find their origin with Nimrod and his wife Semiramis at the Tower of Babel. Thus,

every primary god is a figure of Nimrod, and every primary goddess is a figure of Semiramis.” https://answersingenesis.org/holidays/easter/is-the-name-easter-of-pagan-origin/

Although Easter has become a very important holiday for christians and non-christians alike, I think it is important to understand the origins of the holidays that we celebrate. We can still have family traditions and especially celebrate the amazing resurrection of Jesus, but it’s always good to know the WHY behind traditions.

When we know the origins of holidays, we can then teach our kids the meaning of what they celebrate, or maybe even why we may not celebrate them.

The History behind the Bunnies

Have you ever wondered where the bunnies come from? Where the heck do you get a bunny that lays eggs, as part of a traditional christian celebration? Let’s look at what the History Channel (a very secular and liberal station) says about the easter bunny…

“The Bible makes no mention of a long-eared, short-tailed creature who delivers decorated eggs to well-behaved children on Easter Sunday; nevertheless, the Easter bunny has become a prominent symbol of Christianity’s most important holiday. The exact origins of this mythical mammal are unclear, but rabbits, known to be prolific procreators, are an ancient symbol of fertility and new life. According to some sources, the Easter bunny first arrived in America in the 1700s with German immigrants who settled in Pennsylvania and transported their tradition of an egg-laying hare called “Osterhase” or “Oschter Haws.” Their children made nests in which this creature could lay its colored eggs. Eventually, the custom spread across the U.S. and the fabled rabbit’s Easter morning deliveries expanded to include chocolate and other types of candy and gifts, while decorated baskets replaced nests. Additionally, children often left out carrots for the bunny in case he got hungry from all his

hopping.”https://www.history.com/topics/holidays/easter-symbols

Although I complete disagree that the easter bunny has become a “prominent symbol of christianity’s most important holiday”, I think it is interesting to read secular perspective on what historical traditions are.

Secular historians do not see that for christians, the most important celebration is the resurrection of Jesus from the grave. Our celebration lies in the defeat of death itself! Jesus, raising from the grave to fulfill the prophesies and delivering us from an eternity separated from God. THAT is our celebration! 

Sure, the kids have fun with the egg hunts, the candy and the bbq’s…but that is merely tradition. The easter bunny is NOT what we celebrate.

Celebrate!

“And behold, there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door,and sat on it.
 His countenance was like lightning, and his clothing as white as snow.
 And the guards shook for fear of him, and became like dead men.
 But the angel answered and said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified.
 ‘He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.'” –Matthew 28:2-6

You see, we DO have something to celebrate! Jesus conquered death! He died for our sins, He rose from the grave, AND He is coming back again!

What is not to celebrate???

We do not have to celebrate a little bunny bouncing around, laying eggs and delivering sugar to our children…But we can celebrate the King of Kings raising from the dead! We can celebrate our Jesus conquering death and sin!

I’d like to start a tradition of calling our celebration “Resurrection Sunday”. We are, in fact, celebrating His resurrection, right?

So, this Sunday, as ya’ll are spending time with your families and celebrating…remember WHY we celebrate!

JESUS IS ALIVE! Let me leave you with this awesome song/story…

God Bless and HAPPY RESURRECTION SUNDAY!

-Z

 

Hands-on Housewife · Z's Opinions

Girl Worship Leaders

The “controversy” and the defense.

Welcome to Talk Tuesday! Today we will be talking about the role of a WORSHIP LEADER.

The Controversy

 I am a worship leader. And I am a girl!

There are some out there that would argue that “women should be silent in the church and definitely not be leading worship”. 

Yes, that is the opinion of some people. I disagree.

It’s unfortunate that these sort of things (opinions) cause such division in our churches. Especially (in my opinion), when there are so many other more important things to spend our energy on “arguing” about as christian brothers and sisters. (Not that we should be arguing at all. Lol).

Unfortunately, There were other subjects that were brought up about other disagreements such as song choices, clothing style, prayer, etc.

At first, I started to doubt myself. Why? Because I didn’t want to “stumble” anyone, and I for sure did not want to be doing something that was not biblical. When I started hearing that some people disagreed with my role as worship leader, it really weighed me down. I began to become bitter and started over thinking how I lead worship on Sundays. I had thoughts like, “I wonder if people are angry with me being up here?”, or, “are these songs choices “stumbling” someone right now?”, “Does someone disagree with what I am wearing today?”.

These people probably had good intentions, but didn’t realize that this disagreement with my role, for me was very personal.

It was more of a harmful distraction that I later realized was so un-needed and un-founded. It made me frustrated and distracted from what I was supposed to be focused on…God.

The Defense

Fortunately, my husband was very encouraging, as well as some other people who I really respect. We began to search the scriptures on the topic, and finally concluded that it is, in-fact very biblical for women to lead worship in the church. 

God can use anyone, anywhere for his glory.

Obviously, this conviction needs to be your own personal conviction, but I believe that God wants us to use our gifts to benefit the body of Christ (the Church), Whether we are male or female. We all have different gifts that we can use to serve others in our churches.

“We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us…
Now about the gifts of the Spirit, brothers and sisters, I do not want you to be uninformed.
There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them.
to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit,
And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then giftsof healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues.”
-Rom. 12:6, 1 Cor. 12:1, 4, 9, 28
The Bible has never been gender specific on the role as a worship leader. Some people would say that if you are a worship leader, then you are “shepherding”, “teaching doctrine” and leading men (if you are a female) in a leadership role.
I disagree.

There is a distinct difference for me between a worship LEADER, and a worship PASTOR.

  • As a worship LEADER, your role is to organize, lead in music, schedule band practice and teams, administrative responsibilities, motivate and encourage, etc.
  • As a worship PASTOR, your role is to lead every member in a “shepherding” sense, guide and counsel members of the team, disciple and lead studies, teach doctrine during the worship set or in a teaching role, administrative responsibilities, motivate and encourage, etc.

I personally have the conviction that women shouldn’t be pastors. However, I believe that God has called us as christians to be always ministering to people. No matter if you are male or female.

I believe that ministry happens wherever you are.

The worship ministry leader role allows for a lot of ministry. The relationships that I build with people who are in the ministry allows me to have so much influence, ability to serve, and gives me the opportunity to invest in them.

Do I need to be a PASTOR to do that? Nope.

Like I said before, ministry happens wherever you are.

sibling music
Playing and singing with my siblings. One of my favorite things to do!
music
We always have a blast leading worship!
music ministry
It’s such a privilege to serve with such awesome people!
Setting up for practice.
All of my babies at practice.

 

 

 

My Brother and Sister. Two of my favorite people.

The Conclusion

So, to settle this topic, I just wanted to finally put my belief into words. I have struggled for a couple of years now, how to speak truth to people who may have (possibly with all good intentions) caused division and or frustration for me as a worship leader.

I have come to the conclusion that God has to convict them. The Holy Spirit has that role, not me. I can only be obedient to what God has called me to do for “such a time as this”. I am not perfect. I am no “professional” musician (that’s for sure), but I believe God has called me to use my gifts in music and leadership.

Meanwhile, I will continue to be faithful and consistent in my role as worship leader. I will give of my time, my energy and my recourses whenever I can, because I believe that leading and serving others in worship is one of the most important things I can do for my church. I want to be an example for my children of what serving others looks like.

I believe in consistency. I believe in being faithful to your calling.

Whatever your role is in your church, I just encourage to continue in it. There will always be people who disagree with “something”.

Don’t be discouraged like I was. Know that God is delighted in you! He loves you and is using you in serving others for His glory! It can be so rewarding!

Isn’t it amazing that the God of the universe uses us for His ministry???

I pray that you will be encouraged.

Thanks for reading! Have a blessed day!

-Z

 

Hands-on Housewife · Z's Opinions

Guns & Girls

Hi! Welcome to Talk Tuesday-Guns&Girls! We will be discussing self-defense, CCW’s, the 2nd amendment and women with guns! Join me!

“… My Cold Dead Hands…”

One of my favorite quotes of all times is…

“I’ll give you my gun when you pry it from my cold, dead hands” -Charlton Heston 

The phrase gained newfound popularity following the 129th NRA convention, in Charlotte, North Carolina on May 20, 2000, when the actor, and president at the time of the NRA, Charlton Heston ended a speech by concluding:

“For the next six months, [Democratic presidential candidate and then-Vice President of the United States, Al Gore] is going to smear you as the enemy. He will slander you as gun-toting, knuckle-dragging, bloodthirsty maniacs who stand in the way of a safer America. Will you remain silent? I will not remain silent. If we are going to stop this, then it is vital to every law-abiding gun owner in America to register to vote and show up at the polls on Election Day.”

Heston then paused to pick up a replica of a flintlock long rifle and continued:[5]

“So, as we set out this year to defeat the divisive forces that would take freedom away, I want to say those fighting words for everyone within the sound of my voice to hear and to heed, and especially for you, Mr. Gore: ‘From my cold, dead hands!’[6]”

— Charlton Heston, May 20, 2000 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/From_my_cold,_dead_hands

 

family gun session
My handsome husband, Son Jesse and I.
Does all this mean that I love guns? H-E-Double-hockey-sticks, Yes!!!! As a true-blooded American female, I love guns. Guess what? THERE’S NOTHING WRONG WITH THAT!
I believe that as an American citizen, it my right to “bear arms”. In-fact, in this day and age where morality is almost non-existent, I think it’s a necessity to carry a weapon, especially as a woman. To be able to teach my children how to operate a weapon in a safe way is a privilege!
Now, for all you who did not leave the website as soon I said that, you might ask, “how do I go about carrying a weapon in a legal manner?”.

2nd Amendment Right

Did you read that end part? “…shall not be infringed.” Our rights were written down by our forefathers with the intentions of giving the freedoms to live FREE lives. The 2nd Amendment is no exception.

Have you ever wondered what it would be like if we were not able to carry a weapon, and have the right to do so?

Chaos. That’s what would happen. Although this picture is a photo of the L.A. riots in 1992, this is a picture of what could happen if citizens did not have the option or right to carry a weapon for self-defense. Total anarchy and chaos.

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” -Edmund Burke

 

Concealed Carry Weapons Permit (CCW) 

The sad fact of the matter is, California is one of the hardest states to get a CCW. Fortunately, in San Bernardino County (my county), you have a far easier possibility of getting a CCW. Yay!

The requirements to apply for a CCW in the County of San Bernardino County are:

To qualify you must

  • Be of good moral character
  • Full-time resident of San Bernardino County
  • Be at least 21 years old
  • Own and have a gun registered in California
  • Not have any open criminal cases or pending citations
  • Not have any felony convictions or specified misdemeanors per Penal Code Sections 29900-29905
  • Not be on active probation

To get an application for a CCW, just click on the link below. (You know you want to;)

http://cms.sbcounty.gov/sheriff/CCWFAQ.aspx.

History of Right To Carry laws:

Concealed weapons bans were passed in Kentucky and Louisiana in 1813. (In those days open carry of weapons for self-defense was considered acceptable; concealed carry was denounced as the practice of criminals.) By 1859, Indiana, Tennessee, Virginia, Alabama, and Ohio had followed suit.[5] By the end of the nineteenth century, similar laws were passed in places such as Texas, Florida, and Oklahoma, which protected some gun rights in their state constitutions.[6] Before the mid 1900s, most U.S. states had passed concealed carry laws rather than banning weapons completely.[7] Until the late 1990s, many Southern states were either “No-Issue” or “Restrictive May-Issue”. Since then, these states have largely enacted “Shall-Issue” licensing laws, with numerous states legalizing “Unrestricted concealed carry“. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Concealed_carry_in_the_United_States

Women Should be armed

Did you know that 1 in 5 women are raped at some point in their lives (nsvrc.org)? That’s crazy!!! Why is this statistic so high? I was quite shocked! Did you also know that  As many as 200,000 women use a gun every year to defend themselves against sexual abuse (https://www.gunowners.org/sk0802htm.htm)??

Those statistics don’t lie. I would much rather be on the other side of that barrel then be caught without a weapon to defend myself and my family with! That is why I advocate for women, not only being able to defend themselves, but to be able to carry a gun for self-protection.

Heres another interesting piece of info…

Iron Defense Firearms Training

fullsizeoutput_7d8a.jpeg

Meet my sister. Her name is Mel, and she is a firearms safety instructor! I know right? Pretty cool! She has always had an interest in guns, and has always been an advocate of women’s gun safety and training. She teaches people (especially women) how to handle a firearm in a safe manner. She is very knowledgeable on not only gun safety, but also the laws that are being passed to try to stifle our right to bear arms.

Her website is a great place to stay up to date on local gun laws and events. You should check her out! Just click here: https://www.irondefensetraining.com

There is a ton of info Mel shares on her website, and a bunch of opportunities for women to get involved in learning and supporting our 2nd amendment right!

If you  live in Southern California and would like to schedule a private lesson or maybe take a group of like-minded people who would like training in gun safety, hit her up!

Melody Johnson |       mel.sjohnson@icloud.com

 

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