Monday, April 11, 2011

Heart Check

What is your heart telling you? Is your heart physically healthy? Have you been eating well? Exercising? I have been! Ok, ok... the eating part is a struggle, but I'm convinced I'm going to have this struggle forever! I win more often than not, that should count, right? I love being able to bake and cook for my family. It's one way that I can help keep our heart in check. At least my food isn't laden with heavy chemicals to prolong shelf life. And it's pretty darn tasty! Today I made a new bread. I used white, processed flour- simply because I have a LOT of it I need to use. But I'll be able to tweak the recipe in the future. Or use non-bleached white flour. Anyway, the hubby has been asking for Farmhouse Bread for a while, so I finally made him some. OH MY GOODNESS! It's delish!

My grocery shopping is coming along nicely as well. Another way I can keep my family's heart healthy is by reading the ingredients. I'm doing my best to avoid anything with MSG, GMOs, or HFCS! I also try to read the label to see calories, sugar, and sodium. If I don't, I won't know what we put into our body. How is that taking care of your heart?

And of course, one of the best ways to keep your heart in check is to EXERCISE! MOVE IT! MOVE IT! MOVE IT! And I have! I've set weekly goals for my treadmill, or rather, for me on my treadmill. And each week I've met them! And it isn't enough to meet them, but to exceed them. Push your heart to the limit!!! I upped my goal this week! Keep pushing yourself to make your heart stronger.

What about spiritually healthy? Are you breathing? Read God's word and pray to exercise your spiritual heart daily. What is God's word telling you? What have you been praying about? My burden lately has been on my children, and children in general. See, I believe that we put a lot of expectations on our children. We expect them to perform well in school- many times expecting them to learn things that we were much older before we learned. We expect them to perform well at sports- whatever happened to "just have fun"? We expect them to perform well at the house- do we expect too much from them? Are we forgetting that they are just kids? Whatever happened to the careless running around outside for HOURS? Instead, they are allowed to sit for HOURS watching TV or video games. Or on homework. Or perfecting their throw. What's up with this? So yes, lately my heart has been hurting for children.

Naturally, this thought process brings me to serious thoughts about my own children. They do get a lot of childish freedom. They are expected to play outside whenever it's nice, and they don't complain about it. They do watch some TV, but it doesn't consume us. Often it's evening before it's even turned on- and we stay home all day. Since we home educate, we are able to allow them to "go with the flow" when it comes to learning. No extreme expectations and if they need more time to conquer something it's no big deal. But my heart is still burdened for them.

Why? Because children grow up. My prayer lately has been about my children's future. One, specifically for their salvation. Two, their confidence. Three, their respect. It all starts with their walk with God. I quietly petition God to save them knowing that all they need to do is ask. I pray that they will ask God before it's too late. Once they begin their walk with God, I want to continue encouraging them to be confident. Not the confidence that brings cockiness, but confidence in who they are. They are a child of the King! They are prince and princesses. They shouldn't be hindered by what others think because they know they are fearfully and wonderfully made. Last, it's all about respect. You don't have to like what someone is doing, you don't even have to agree with it, but you should respect it. I think that's what's wrong with the world- they've lost RESPECT! (Mainly for God). I want to instill in my children the importance of respect. The every day thank you to respecting themselves- their bodies- and others- other people's bodies. I don't want my daughters struggling with eating disorders and body image problems. I don't want my daughters to desire someone because they feel unworthy. I don't want my son to be what the world considers a "typical" guy. I don't want him gawking at women. I want him to respect them. My husband rocks! I've never seen him check out another girl and he doesn't oogle 'certain' magazines. I've never doubted that I wasn't the prettiest girl he's ever seen. He makes SURE I know that he has eyes for only ME! Now, I'm not saying that all men aren't like this, but it does appear that they are few and far in between. Even in the Christian realm things are accepted that shouldn't be.

So, again, how's your heart? Physically and spiritually? Are you keeping fit? Are you listening to it?

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