Blog, Mission Ideas

Prayer Meal Idea: Oh, Canada…

As it gets colder, I often think of our Northern neighbors, Canada, and I often wonder how in the world they handle the cold?!?  I’m a summer gal through and through! I love a good snow, but I love the southern kind of snow that shuts everything down for a few days and then we head back to school and work and it’s 60 degrees a few days later. I was even complaining this morning because it was a cold 32 degrees. In Canada, their weatherman is already calling for SNOW! I just can’t…

This month we will be enjoying a popular Canadian dish, Poutine. This is an interesting combination of a few of my favorite things. Who doesn’t love fries covered in cheese? But covered in brown gravy and cheese curds? I can’t wait to give it a TRY and spend the evening setting our hearts and minds on people a little further up north and thanking the Lord that we are a little warmer…

For some great recipes for Poutine, be sure to check out our Pinterest board. I had a hard time just picking ONE – there seems to be LOTS of thoughts and ideas on how to best make this yummy messy super unhealthy dish!

poutine 1

And while we are enjoying all the yumminess, we will be thinking of one of our favorite families, the Ostrems , who live in Canada with their family working among internationals through various outreaches. As they get ready to gear up for the winter months, it’s a great time to pray for them and for all that God is doing through them.

Prayer Points:

1. Pray for their Christmas outreach event with around 150 Syrians. They will be hosting a meal and sharing the Gospel. I wonder if they will serve Poutine?! Ha

2. Pray for their sports ministry. They have some great opportunities ahead but are limited on money and staff. But we know God is NOT! So we are joining them in prayer for God to provide!

3. Pray for their family. With winter coming and families not getting out much, depression can begin to set in. Pray for great family time and opportunities during the cold hard months.

They are also a pretty talented family too – Brandy has an incredible doll making business called Blessum&Arrows that you should totally check out! Oh it makes my heart skip a beat to see these sweet little creations she has made with her hands and heart!

Let us know when you try the Poutine around your dinner table! Share a pic over on our Instagram Post!

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Blog, Mission Ideas

Seizing Opportunities: Serving During the Holidays

It’s so easy during the Holiday season to want to draw a circle around your family and focus on yourselves. We all get it – there are a TON of things going on – from parties to family dinners to school programs and even to the traditions that you are striving to start within your family. It’s busy! But I want to encourage you that often times during the Holidays is when others are most open to the Gospel and when we can teach our little ones to set their minds on Jesus and others, and not themselves.

Here are some easy Thanksgiving Service Ideas that you can do with your little ones!

Host a Thanksgiving Feast and Invite Others

If you look around your neighborhood, your office, your child’s school, or at your local college, you will see lots of people who could be spending this Thanksgiving alone. Invite them to your family dinner. Ask them to join you and your family for a meal.  There is always room for one more, right?! And if you have ever had to spend a holiday alone, you will know how incredible it feels to be invited in, to have a place at the table set just for you.

Visit your local Nursing Home 

Holidays can sometimes be hard for those in Nursing Homes and Assisted Living facilities. Encourage your child to make thankful leaves or a fall craft and deliver it to residents to brighten their days. Maybe you can get together with other moms and kiddos and make a fun adventure out of it! Make a craft and then set a time to deliver them all together!

Say Thank You and Give Thankfully! 

Look for ways with your little one to say “thank you” to those in your world that serve your family. This is easy – the trashman, the mail lady, the lawn guy (even if it is daddy or mommy). Make cookies, make a card, draw them a picture, buy them a hot coffee on a cold day – whatever it is, it encourages our little ones to not only SAY thank you but to live and give thankfully!

Collect Food for the Hungry 

We all love to sit down at our Thanksgiving meal but many in your own town won’t be doing that! Contact your local food bank, soup kitchen, or homeless shelter and see how you can partner with them to provide a Holiday Meal.  Let your little ones help you shop for the food items needed. Encourage them to make cards or “turkey hands” to go with the food items. Often times that means more to the family receiving the items than the actual items! Locally, we have an incredible program called Overflow which partners with many churches, our local United Way, and several serving agencies to provide Holiday Bags filled with food items like stuffing, beans, sweet potatoes, etc. and then provides recipes to help a family know how to prepare a Thanksgiving or Christmas feast.

Get Outside and Rake! 

I love all the Fall Leaves but by November and December they are usually starting to pile up! Is there someone in your community or neighborhood who could use a little encouragement and physical help, maybe a widow that goes to your church? Offer to come over with the little ones and spend some time raking and helping them with their yard work. When it’s all piled up, let the little ones have a few jumps in the pile and enjoy the squeals of laughter! I’m sure that sweet widow will smile too!

These ideas aren’t brand new. They aren’t that “ah ha… what a great idea!” kinda thing. They are just simple ideas to help us set our time and our hearts on the right things this holiday season, serving Jesus and others. If we want to raise World Changers, we have to start somewhere and seize those opportunities to lead our little ones to love Jesus and others!

For more Thanksgiving Holiday service ideas, follow Pinterest!

And for Super cute ideas and traditions to start with your family during the Holidays, make sure you are following Ashley over at The Littles and Me! She has great fun activities and resources!

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I want to be like her…

I grew up hearing all about her every Christmas season, her love for the Chinese people that she served, and how she ultimately gave her life serving Jesus.  I also grew up eating the horrendous cookies she was famous for making and sharing with the children that she served.

I don’t know when, but through the years, she just kind of became that missionary hero for me.  That someone I looked up to (even though I never met her obviously!) and that someone that just intrigues me! She lived and served well before her time, especially in the Southern Baptist church culture. It was unheard of to see single women serving and speaking out in such bold and brave ways.  But she did.. and I’m thankful today that she was obedient to what God had called her to do and say.  Lottie Moon’s life and legacy is simply amazing to me for several reasons.

She loved Jesus and the Gospel more than anything else!   When she left for China to share Jesus with a people who had never heard the gospel, she left behind a future of marriage and possible children. She left behind her family and the wealth  and education and the comforts.  She counted the cost and knew that Christ was worth it ALL! And on July 7, 1873 at the age of thirty-three, Lottie Moon was appointed as a single missionary to China.


“O that the people of God would rise to their opportunities!”

“I long to see Southern Baptists rise up to the measure of duty and privilege in giving the gospel. . . .” 


She was BOLD and called others to action! She was known for the letters that she wrote back to her brothers and sisters challenging them to give and to go and to pray like never before.  She didn’t stop even when it seemed like no one was listening. She also didn’t just focus on connecting with single women, like her. No, she boldly called out the pastor, the men, and the women. She wasn’t okay with the status quo and she was bold enough to stand up against it.

She left a lasting legacy! Every Christmas season, millions of dollars are raised by the International Mission Board in her honor. This money keeps missionaries serving around the world. It started with her bold letters when she pleaded with her Christian  brothers and sisters in America to give like never before.  While I don’t believe she ever dreamed that years later the largest missions offering would be collected yearly in her honor, I do believe that she knew God had called her to do and say BIG things, lasting things and she obeyed! Because of her obedience, hundreds of missionaries have been sent to the mission field (including me) and countless people have entered into an eternity with Jesus.

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Picture of Lottie Moon. (Unknown Source)

So I want to be like her in a lot of ways…

I want to set my eyes and my heart, my bank account, my time – all that I am on Jesus. I want to be BOLD. I want to speak words that are filled with truth and that call myself and others to radical obedience, even when it’s a lonely place.   I want to invest in the eternal things so that many more will hear about the Jesus that I love.

What about you? Who’s your missionary hero? Who challenges you to give, to go, to welcome, to send, and to pray like never before?

You can learn more about the life of Lottie Moon here!

There are also a LOT of fun resources to learn and celebrate the life of Lottie Moon over on On Mission Moms Pinterest. You can also get the recipe for the cookies she was known for.

Resources to share with our littles about the Life of Lottie Moon:


Blog, Mission Ideas, On Mission

Reclaiming Halloween

I strongly believe that what the world meant for evil, God can redeem for good. It’s somewhere in the Bible, right? (Actually Gen. 50:20, where Joseph is speaking to his brothers after they sold him…)

I tend to view Halloween a lot like that. While the world often sees it and pushes it as evil, it doesn’t have to be. As believers, we can reclaim it and use it for His good and for His glory!

Here are a couple ways to do that!

1. Use the evening of trick or treating as an opportunity to get to know your neighbors. Have candy for the kiddos but also provide something for the adults too – maybe a cup of hot coffee or cider, maybe a bag of popcorn. Our Life Group (Sunday school class) did this and not only had a great time together but we were able to help some of our friends meet their neighbors and pray with a few parents too! It led to great conversations and connections and who doesn’t love a quick warm drink when you’re walking around forever with your little super hero or princess.

2. Treat (don’t trick) your Neighbors! We have great neighbors and it makes it so fun when we get to surprise them with extra goodies! And they are so sweet to do the same!! Make some special treats for those that live right beside you or those neighbors that maybe aren’t believers and you are developing a great friendship with. Attach a special note and let them know you are thankful for them and praying for them! Look especially for that neighbor that maybe isn’t able to get out or is alone… this can be a stressful and lonely evening for some! So pray for them and stop and chat! You may be their only conversation that day…

What ideas can you share to help us reclaim Halloween and use it as an opportunity to share Christ with our little ones and our neighbors?

Blog, On Mission

Asking the Questions

Call me crazy, but I generally love car time with my girls. It’s a chance to chat and connect and hear about their day especially when I pick them up after their morning of preschool. Often times though, I’m met with silence and tired brains that have been learning and playing hard and as my oldest sometimes says “I just don’t wanna talk about it right now.”

I strive to keep the conversation going though, admittedly so they won’t fall asleep in our five minute drive home, but also so I can learn and encourage and know what’s brewing in their little hearts. I also love to use questions to help them to start thinking about their day and how we are all “on Mission”. I generally ask a question and then we all take turns answering, even the two year old – which is often comical! We usually don’t get more than a couple questions in at a time and that’s okay. My goal isn’t to work through a whole list of questions, it’s to provide a safe place where my girls feel like they can chat and share and open up their hearts. I believe it’s also crucial and more beneficial to ask questions that can’t be easily answered with a yes or a no, but ones they have to give details with. This usually Spurs on deeper conversation.

Here are some great conversation starters centered around leading our little ones to see their lives as “being on Mission”:

  • What did you love about today?
  • What did you not love?
  • What would you do different about today if you could?
  • How were you able to serve others today?
  • How did you serve your teacher and bring her honor?
  • Were you kind and loving in all you did today? With all your friends?
  • Was there anyone who was “left out” or maybe alone today?
  • Were you left out today or maybe felt alone? How did that make you feel?
  • Did you see a special “need” in your class today that maybe you could help with?
  • Were you able to share with a friend today?
  • If you could help or serve anyone today, who would you want to help? Why?
  • What’s the name of a new friend that you played with today?
  • Who did you have an opportunity to share Your bible story or scripture verse with today?
  • Is there anyone or anything you would like to pray for today? (And then we pray for that!)

Let’s be mamas that reclaim the car time and the dinner table time and make sure that it’s a space where our children are chatting and connecting as a family, which starts especially as little ones!

And on those few days when they “just don’t wanna talk about it,” we crank up the silly songs and sing our way home!

What conversation questions do you use with your kiddos to get them talking? Do you listen and share too?

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Serving Others through Hospitality

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While I love to host others in my home, I have to admit it’s not always the easiest or first thing on my mind.  I think sometimes we just get “busy” or if I’m real honest with you, I’m just too fearful to ask others over and it’s comfortable being at home with the hubby and family. I also have been thinking on this lately and feel we’ve made hospitality into something “big” and  hard when it doesn’t have to be! We often times want our homes and our lives to be perfect and “then” we will ask friends and neighbors inside. I’ve had to check my heart a lot lately over this and remind myself that I’m never going to have it all together… and that’s okay! 

Opening our homes and our lives can be really simple and fun but it does take being intentional! Here are some fun ideas and thoughts that I’ve come across lately: 

  1. Ask a neighbor over for coffee and  muffins! Especially if you have little ones and the thought of getting your stuff together to host them for a big meal overwhelms you. Or simply grab some bagels or bakery items from the store. It can be simple and still a great time! 
  2. Take hospitality outside! I recently saw an Instagram post where one mama just sets up tables outside and they have “community dinner”. The kids play and the mamas just bring what they were gonna be having for dinner anyway outside and the families all enjoy it together. That’s brilliant in a lot of ways – it lets the kids play outside and the clean up is minimal! 
  3. Keep it simple! Stick with an easy dinner recipe that is a tried and true one. I have a great chili recipe that I’ve made for several events and everyone loves it and often asks for the recipe. It’s easy and I can pretty much make it from memory now. Put a crockpot of chili on, pull out the paper bowls and relax! While I love a good reason to pull out the Family China, I don’t always have the energy for a four course meal- and that’s okay! Most friends wouldn’t expect that anyway! And, If you are wondering about that chili recipe, you can find it at Cooking Classy. 
  4. Center your time around something to learn – like a book club, or a cooking club, or a knitting club or a party where a friend is “selling” something like Doterra or Beauty Counter or Pampered Chef – I could go on and on with the party ideas. Find something you want to learn about and gather friends to learn with you and support their work too while you are at it!
  5. With the Fall Season, you can also do a Smore’s Night and “fire up” the fire pit outside and toast some marshmallows. Yummy! It’s also football season, which is always a GREAT reason to throw a party and watch your favorite team together.  (Geaux Saints!! ha) Look at the season and see what you could plan! Christmas is also a great time to invite friends in!
  6. Just ask… I think you’ll be surprised! Just ask that new friend you met and want to get to know! Chances are, they are probably wanting to get to know you too! 

More than anything, just open your homes and your heart and your lives for that is where you will find community with one another and opportunities to share Christ with those in your life. 

For more Ideas, be sure to follow our Pinterest Board.

Here are some great resources addressing hospitality that you can purchase from Amazon. (These are affiliate links so we do receive a small percentage of your purchase to help support the work of On Mission Moms!)

Blog, On Mission

On Mission Mom Spotlight: J serving in Southeast Asia

* we can’t share her pic here, her name, or where she serves… but you can pray regardless and be encouraged by this On Mission Mom as she strives to be intentional and balance her time!

Introduce your family and what you guys do, etc.

My name is J and my husband is T. We have four children and we live in a Southeast Asian country that is primarily Buddhist; however, our main focus and people group are Muslim. In our country the people we serve are disliked and hated. They have very little freedom in our country and many struggle just to vote or travel. They are often happy to talk with believers. They feel a closeness to us because we hold many same beliefs, such as following one God.

What’s been your biggest joy in living and serving overseas?

The biggest joy in living overseas is learning this new culture and loving on these people. We have some great people here and they are happy to help. Whenever I am out with the kids, usually someone comes over and helps me carry them or helps guide them in the direction we are going. The people here love to help.

We are beginning to see our children have a love for the nations, because they see this country as home and they love their friends and want to share with them the Good News, even now as children.

What’s been the biggest struggle?

The biggest struggle here besides missing family like crazy, is remembering the culture we live in 24/7. There are days I would like to go to the store and back without someone pinching my kids cheeks. Or having to stop when we are at the park every few feet because everyone wants a picture with the foreign children. My children sometimes get shy and just want to hide when people start talking to them and they don’t understand all that is being said to them. This is not the culture I grew up in, and it takes effort to remember how to react to situations I would see as weird and they think is an everyday occurrence. It doesn’t mean their culture is wrong. It is just different. We look at it in a different way and see what they see. There are many times my baby loves posing for pics, so his brother and sisters get out of it. I think he now thinks it is weird to go somewhere and people not look at him. We love these people and every pinch and picture also shows that they like us also, and are willing to be around us. We can even use that to share with them life changing news!

How do you involve the kiddos in what you do?

Right now in our work there are very few believers in the people we are reaching. We are going out and pr* walking around their places of worship. Also T goes out regularly to share with people and I go to an English club where many girls are trying to learn English. Every Sunday we have a family pr* time for our people and the kids ask for them to hear the Good News. We go to parks and as a family hang out with other families and the children play together and naturally talk about what they know. My oldest child is passionate about wanting to share with people. Our older girls also attend a dance class and on Easter they wore the Easter story in henna on their hand and made cookies for their class to share.

Whats one way that you stay “On Mission” where you live?

One thing we try to do to keep “on Mission” is to remind the kids as we go out that we are being intentional. We are going to keep our eyes open for the person Father is sending our way today. That person may be someone who we are supposed to share with. That could be the kid on a slide with you or the lady giving you candy from her store. Just be ready and willing to share and help Mama and Daddy also recognize and share too!

What’s one thing you are learning as a mom?

The thing I am learning these days is balance. Our schedule can get very busy as most moms know. I am learning how to maximize my time and focus on what He has entrusted to me at this moment in my life. Right now my main focus is homeschooling and discipling my children. In doing that, we also go out to tell others.

How can we lift you up as you love and serve your families and others?

As you think of us just lift up that we use our time wisely. Ask that we recognize the opportunities in our path to share. Ask that our children will be bold and share with us. That we continue to learn language and culture to be better at reaching their hearts.