Peace of My Heart

An encouraging voice to drown out the noise

~Strong Couselor~ May 8, 2013

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autumnToday is my daughter, Autumn Rayne’s, 11th birthday.  As some of you may know, I have not been her mother since birth but God chose to give us each other when she was 4 years old.  When she was named, it wasn’t for any particular reason other than her BM (biological mother) liked the way it sounded.  So when I looked up the meanings of each of my children’s names this year for Easter, I was disappointed when Autumn only meant “born in the fall.”  I wanted them to feel special when they looked at the framed picture and nothing about born in the fall signified importance to me, especially since she was born in the Spring!  Then I looked up Rayne.  Rayne means “strong counselor.”  I could not think of a better name for our beautiful Autumn.

She may only be 11, but she has a heart for God.  Her desire to serve Him has made her a leader among her friends and even in this family.  She prays eloquent, heart-felt prayers over those that she loves and even those she does not yet know.  Her daddy and I have often discussed how we feel she is being called into ministry.  We sometimes joke by calling her our little missionary!

This past weekend, we received even further confirmation of just how God wants to use her.  Seeing as how this is her story, I wanted it to be in her own words.  She wrote about her experience and has given me permission to share with you.

“This weekend I went to a kids retreat with my church.  I had a great time!  There we heard two bands, saw one clown, watched four drama skits and went to four great services.  We even had some fun time where I faced my fear and rode my first ever upside down ride, it was AWESOME!  I want to tell you about one particular service.  It was Saturday night, we had an altar service.  It was AMAZING.  The Pastor said if we would like to we could go up to the altar to pray or we could pray at our seats.  I went up to the altar.  We were praying for the gift of God’s language.  When I was praying I heard a voice saying, “Autumn, I want you to serve my son by preaching about him.  I want you to be a pastor.”  I knew that was God’s voice saying that.  I felt joyful!  Right then I bowed down on my knees and prayed that God would guide my life of being a pastor and I thanked Him for everything.”

I was completely overwhelmed when she shared this with us.  As soon as she started to tell me about it, she started to cry…well so did momma.  I am beyond proud of my little girl for being so open to hear from God.  She wasn’t afraid, she didn’t try to tune Him out and she is already putting in the work to do what He spoke into her heart that night.  If only we would all respond to God’s call with such childlike faith.

So now you can see why the name “strong counselor” is so fitting for my girl.  Her BM may not have known why she named her Rayne, but God most certainly did.  I am one lucky woman to be her mother and I thank God for bringing her to me.  She inspires me to be a better person each and every day.  I pray that she would be abundantly blessed as she matures and grows in her faith.

Happy Birthday to my sweet girl and thanks for sharing your personal experience with us!

“At about the same time, the disciples came to Jesus asking, “Who gets the highest rank in God’s kingdom?”

For an answer Jesus called over a child, whom he stood in the middle of the room, and said, “I’m telling you, once and for all, that unless you return to square one and start over like children, you’re not even going to get a look at the kingdom, let alone get in. Whoever becomes simple and elemental again, like this child, will rank high in God’s kingdom. What’s more, when you receive the childlike on my account, it’s the same as receiving me.”

(Matthew 18:1-5 The Message)

 

~Quit Blaming Your Upbringin’~ April 26, 2013

If I hear one more person say, “I can’t help it; it’s just the way I was raised” my next post will be from the confines of my holding cell at the county courthouse seeking bail money for “involuntary face smacking”!

I am well aware that your up-bringin’ plays a major role in what kind of adult you will become.  At some point though you have to stop riding on the coattails of mom and dad and be responsible for your own behavior.

So Mom was an alcoholic and was never there for you because she was face down in the pillow 18 hours a day.  Are you going to dive head first in the nearest bottle and drown your sorrows, setting the same,  shining example in front of your kids or are you going to learn from her mistakes?

Dad was a violent man who beat anything and everything that moved, his preferred punching bag was mom and sometimes you.  Is that going to be your excuse for wailing on your wife and kids every time you are disappointed in yourself or will you refuse to follow in dear ol’ dad’s footsteps?

What about the workaholic parents whose main purpose in life was to be the best at everything?  Everything except parenting that is.

I am not trying to make light of some very serious issues, I am simply trying to show that your past does not have to dictate your future.  As children we have no control over what we are exposed to but when we become adults we can choose how those events will shape us.  You can use the pain and emotion from your traumatic childhood experiences to push you to be a better human being or you can use them as your crutch to behave irresponsibly.

If you were not raised in a godly home and were subjected to these circumstances, you may not know how to be anything different than what was lived out in front of you.  The good news is that there is a self-help book for that.  It is known as the Holy Bible.  It is full of insight and wisdom on how you can be a better version of you.  Perhaps the best place to start would be approximately mid-way through the Bible at the book of Proverbs.  In the opening chapter, it tells us that “Fear of the Lord is our foundation of true knowledge.” (1:7)  Within it’s 31 chapters you will find practical instruction on real life issues such as day-to-day life, money matters, raising children and dealing with social matters.  Don’t stop there.  All throughout the Bible, answers that we all desperately need can be found in order to ensure that we do not simply squeak by in this life.  Promises of an abundant life over-flowing with the blessings and goodness that come by way of a relationship with the Creator can be found throughout the pages.

You see, no matter where you came from, you can always choose to change your final destination.

“Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, so that you and your descendants might live!”

(Deuteronomy 30:19 NLT)

OR

“If you refuse to serve the Lord, then choose today whom you will serve…But as for me and my family, we will serve the Lord.

(Joshua 24:15 NLT)blamegame