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Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Step Parenting With Grace

Upon considering marriage to my Mr. Wonderful, I also needed consider my role in becoming a stepmom.  Children contribute a significant part of second family dynamics, and the statistics aren't encouraging.  I found helpful information and some what-to-expect type books.  But I didn't see anything that caters to the basic encouragement for stepparents as we do our best to tackle the needs of the new family.  

I'm so excited to introduce a new personal devotion for step parents.  Within the pages you will find understanding and camaraderie from someone who has been in your very position.  Author Gayla Grace speaks with experience and compassion on matters that are only known within the step family dynamic.  Grace shares from a knowing heart without judgement.

Step Parenting With Grace  is a collection of ninety short devotions that pertain to step family life.  Each idea encourages us to expand our hearts and keep our "Eyes off me," (page 8).  Readers will be inspired to take the long perspective of this life with patience, perspective and perseverance.  Step mom and dads alike with be guided in our unique privilege and lifted in prayer.  Grace also includes quote and mantras from all walks of life from the likes of Elisabeth Elliot and AA.  You will find wisdom from Scripture, African proverbs and the NFL.

For the moments that happen everyday to the special holidays, thoughts in Grace's collection will provide focus for the greater purpose you desire as a step parent: Connection.

Let me know if you order and what you think of this new resource!  Comment about your greatest step parenting surprise and be entered for a free book.

Friday, August 3, 2018

A Tribute to Shelly and to Friendship

Psalm 116:15
"Precious in the sight of the Lord
is the death of His faithful servants."

I've shared much about my support system of best friends who are spread out across the United States.  We learned in late May that one of our group had a dear sister who was facing a health crisis.  I am fortunate to have met Shelly Henderson-Mwamakula, but it has been many years since I saw her in person.  She lived in Tanzania and I was able to keep up with her via Facebook and her ministry reports, along with the updates from her sister who is among my dearest friends.

Shelly and Ray Mwamakula (Photo via Facebook)
Shelly was adventurous, full of joy and laughter and she loved Christ with her whole self.  She served women and children in a society that often considers them as property.  She wrote and developed curriculum used to teach scripture.  Her goal was to empower children and thereby change families for the next generation.

It's heartbreaking that she will not be present as her mission goes forward.  There is no doubt that Shelly's influence and legacy will continue among the people for years to come.  My heart aches for the loss that her family will feel, and I especially hurt for my friend.

Shelly's family selflessly shared Shelly with the world and my respect and admiration are great for them all.  I look forward to when we will meet again in heaven one day, Shelly.

Through the grief, we rallied to be with our friend.  She has faced difficult decisions, loss and pain that we haven't had to walk through for ourselves.  I wanted her to know that she is not alone, she is surrounded by love and admiration.  Our friendship has walked through seasons of joy and of difficulty, now through a season of grief and loss.