How to Stand in Faith for Your Children | alyssajhoward.com

How to Stand in Faith for Your Children

The moment my little girls were born, I was overwhelmed. I never knew it was possible to feel so many different emotions all at once. But I found myself mesmerized by their innocence and purity. Sure, they cried a lot, but they were so incredibly… perfect and untainted. I wanted to protect them at all costs, but I didn’t know where to start. Our culture is far from perfect. My children are growing up in a world with reasons to fear at every corner and sin so readily available. I knew I needed to learn how to stand in faith for my girls. Continue Reading

3 Ways to Recover from a Parenting Failure

It happened one sunny day not too long ago. I lost it. And by “it,” I mean that I lost my temper. And when I say “one sunny day,” I mean today. (How’s that for transparency!) I have two little girls, and I love them more than anything. Seriously… they mean the world to me and I would do anything for them. But unfortunately, these tiny humans know how to push my buttons. They know how to get under my skin at the worst possible moments. It’s normal to have a parenting failure from time to time. We would all be lying to say it never happens to us. So how do we recover from the wreckage?  Continue Reading

When Your Children Want Nothing to Do with God | alyssajhoward.com

When Your Children Want Nothing to Do with God

We all want what’s best for our children. I’ve only been a mother a short time, but I’ve learned more about what it means to be a parent in these six short years than any parenting book could have ever taught me. And I am FAR from being an expert! But there is one thing I do know for certain. I love my children. And as a child of God, I know that the only way to raise my children to be all that God intended them to be is to raise them in a way that leads them to the love of Christ. It would break my heart to see them in a place where they wanted nothing to do with God; but unfortunately, I know of far too many mothers (and fathers) who have had to watch their children grow far from Him. Continue Reading

Why It's Important for Your Children to Witness Your Marriage | alyssajhoward.com

Why It’s Important for Your Children to Witness Your Marriage

And they lived happily ever after… From an early age, these are often the words our children first learn about marriage. After all, nearly every princess fairy tale ends in a wedding gown. Most don’t dive into the inner workings of a marriage. We never see Cinderella and Prince Charming in the middle of a heated argument. We only see the dress, the fairy tale, and the happy ending. This is why it is so important for your children to witness your marriage… They need to see what happily ever after actually looks like in the real world. Continue Reading

How to Teach Your Child about Heaven

My family recently experienced the death of a loved one. As I told my young daughters, I was met with a billion and one questions. What does it mean to die? Where do we go? What is heaven like? I truly believe it is important to teach your child about heaven. For Christians, heaven isn’t a far away place in the distant future. It is our home. In fact, the Bible tells us to make it our focus. Continue Reading

What to Do When Your Child Struggles with Nightmares | alyssajhoward.com

What to Do When Your Child Struggles with Nightmares

A few weeks ago, it happened. My daughter had her first real nightmare. It actually caught me off guard. Up until this point, neither of my daughters have suffered from nightmares. Interestingly enough, she didn’t wake up with it; rather, she told me about it the next day. I won’t go into specifics over the details, but it was very vivid. And as her mom, I felt deeply sad for her. I honestly didn’t know what to do for her… so I prayed. Continue Reading

Why My Christian Family Chooses to Embrace Santa Claus | alyssajhoward.com

Why My Christian Family Chooses to Embrace Santa Claus

I never believed in Santa Claus. Sure, my mom would occasionally write “from Santa” on a few of our gifts, but it was always done in fun. I never once believed the gift was actually from the big guy himself. Do I feel deprived of a magical childhood Christmas? Not one bit. In fact, I somewhat enjoyed knowing that my gifts came from people I loved, rather than some jolly man who found a way to shimmy down my non-existent chimney. Continue Reading

How to Honor Your Parents as an Adult (and why you should) | alyssajhoward.com

How to Honor Your Parents as an Adult (and why you should)

Family relationships are important to God. This is made clear all throughout His Word. I’ve always believed that our earthly relationships were put into place to demonstrate our spiritual relationships. For example, God is referred to as our Father. His role in our lives is very similar to that of parents and their children. He provides for us, protects us, guides us, nurtures us, etc. And as His children, we are called to obey Him for the same reason a child obeys their earthly father – He loves us enough to say ‘no’ when we need to hear it. Continue Reading

3 Ways Motherhood Made Me Crazy (and how God taught me to embrace it) | alyssajhoward.com

3 Ways Motherhood Made Me Crazy (and how God taught me to embrace it)

Ever since I was a little girl, I dreamed of one day being a mom. I had no idea what that actually meant as a child, but I knew that I had it in me. And I didn’t just play with my baby dolls… I loved them and took care of them. It wasn’t until I officially entered motherhood that I realized the gravity of taking care of another human being. It’s a lot of work! Continue Reading

How to Build the Kingdom in Your Everyday Life | alyssajhoward.com

How to Build the Kingdom in Your Everyday Life

Throughout His ministry on earth, Jesus gave the disciples a grand mission. They were called to build the Kingdom…

 

One of my favorite things to do as a kid was playing with Legos. And now with two preschoolers, I’m privileged to relive my childhood once more. I’m amazed at how far Legos have come since I was young. You can literally build just about anything! Every time my daughters begin a new Lego project, I ask them one question, “What are you building?”

Sometimes they know exactly what they’re working on. They have a distinct image in their minds of what they desire the end result to be. Other times, they are simply building to build. Either way, they build piece by piece, brick upon brick. And they hope that whatever they are building will be awesome (and that their sister doesn’t come and knock it down!) Continue Reading

3 Ways to Show Love and Serve Your Family (even when you’re stressed)

Let’s face it. In our busy world today, it’s easy to get overworked and tired. If you’re anything like me, your family most likely takes the brunt of your more difficult days (and their accompanying moods). As hard as I try, it’s so much easier to lose my cool when I’m stressed out or exhausted. I find myself feeling under-appreciated, overworked, and temperamental. And when I’m feeling so negative, it’s hard to show love to those around me. I love my family, but my actions don’t always match my true feelings.

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Life, Love, and Dirty Diapers: A Lesson in the Father’s Love for Us

As my oldest daughter turns four years old this week, I can’t help but look back and wonder where the time has gone. It seems like just yesterday that I was rocking her to sleep in my arms, and now I’m lucky if she’ll sit still with me for more than five minutes. (She’s such a busy girl with things to do!)

I know there was a time in my life when she didn’t exist yet; she was just a dream in the far-off future. But looking back, I can’t even remember a world without her in it. It’s as if she has always been here.

 

Life, Love, and Dirty Diapers: A Lesson in the Father's Love for Us | alyssajhoward.com Continue Reading

The Burning Building: A Matter of Life or Death

Let’s pretend for a moment. You are in a room with every person in your life that you care about most. There’s just one problem – this room happens to be in a building that is about to burn to the ground. The fire is closing in, and you know it’s only a matter of time before the whole building goes down in flames. You look around at the people you love. Your spouse, your children, your grandchildren, your closest family and friends – in a short amount of time, it will all be gone.

 

The Burning Building: A Matter of Life or Death | alyssajhoward.com Continue Reading

When Following Your Heart is a Bad Thing

As a good mom, I should encourage my kids to pursue their dreams and set their sights on what they feel is right. At least that’s what our culture tells me I ought to do. It sounds like good advice on the surface. But is following your heart really a good message to be teaching my girls?

 

When Following Your Heart is a Bad Thing | alyssajhoward.com Continue Reading

Teaching Our Children to Love God for Who He Is

Sometimes I wonder if I’m doing my absolute best as a mother. I want my girls to grow up knowing right from wrong – to be smart and to dream big. I want God’s best for them, and I desire that they succeed in all that they set out to do.

As parents, we have an amazing responsibility to our young ones. We do all that we can to raise them well. We teach them to share, to be loving and kind, and to stand up for what they believe in. But is this enough? Is it enough to be educated and successful? Is it enough to be a good person with integrity? In all of our efforts to raise well-rounded children, are we really teaching our children anything that matters in the end?

 

Teaching Our Children to Love God for Who He Is | alyssajhoward.com Continue Reading