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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:


Mission Ideas, On Mission

Thankful Leaves: A Printable

If you could write out all the things you are thankful for, what would you write? We have so much to be thankful for! I’m so thankful that my sweet gals are napping in their rooms right now as I write this! Ha

Seriously though, this time of year just gets me! I love Thanksgiving and turkey and of course the pecan pie! But a huge part of it is the tradition that Dan and I started when we first got married. We began a thankful “tree” and each evening at dinner, we spent a few minutes writing what we were thankful for from that day on a little “leaf” and tying it to the tree. Some things are funny. Some things are just plain silly. Some are sweet. And some just make me cry like a baby. Once our gals came along we knew we wanted the tradition to continue and each year just gets better and better! And we also love keeping the “leaves” and going back and reading them… lots of things change from year to year.

I also have noticed that when we are more focused on things we are thankful for, our gals begin to also do the same. It’s funny how that works, eh…

So how do you foster thankfulness around your home? Do you have any traditions like a “thankful tree”?

If you don’t, I want to encourage you to start a simple tradition and take time to voice and write down things you’re thankful for this year!

Here’s a simple (like super simple) leaf printable that you can use. Just print and cut and then punch holes and tie on your tree!

Click the Link Below to Download your free printable!

Our “tree” is pretty basic too – just find a good mason jar, fill it with sticks and there ya have it! I think they even have some great “real” trees now at Hobby Lobby or Target?!

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What thankful traditions do you have?! Share your ideas here or over on our Instagram!

Here’s the free Printable!

Mission Ideas, On Mission

Growing Thankful Hearts…

“But mommy…. just one more! One more piece of candy!” Seems to be said and heard a lot around our house during this time of year.

At Times, it makes me want to pull my hair out and scream, “can’t you just be thankful that I even let you have ONE piece….” (while that silly pumpkin taunts me from the counter…)

But, then I take a step back and a few minutes of “mommy timeout”, and remember that it’s my calling and honor to teach my girls how to have thankful hearts. They definetly don’t and can’t learn that on their own!

This is a great and easy time of year to take a step back and spend some time developing little thankful hearts.

1. It starts with you! Are you thankful for the things which God has given you? Your home? Your family and your friends? The clothes you wear? Spend some time personally thanking God for all that He has blessed you with. A wise friend once reminded me that “if I were to wake up today with only the things that I thanked God for yesterday, what would I have?” Thats convicting! I can sometimes skip The thankfulness and move right into the petition. When you invite your children into your thankfulness, it’s huge! Do they hear you say “thank you” to your hubby or for that special gift or for the food or for the raise you surprisingly received at work? Or are they hearing you whine “just one more….”

2. Be intentional! There are lots of great ways to foster thankfulness. For us, we have the tradition that dates back to the beginning of our marriage of having a thankful “tree” and each evening during November, we take time at dinner to share one or two things we are thankful for from that day. It may be a phone call from a friend, a walk with the dog, a hug from one of the girls… it can be anything. But we write it down on a “leaf” and tie it to the tree. And over the month it’s always fun to watch the tree begin to fill up. There are other fun ways too celebrate and foster thankfulness.

3. Read about it! Start with scripture and share what it has to say and talk about it with your little ones. 1 Thes. 5:18, Col. 3:15, Col.4:2 and I could keep on going! Just look up “thankful” in your bible! Memorize a few of those verses this month. My favorite is 1 Chronicles 16:34. God’s word is active and alive and can change their hearts! There are also really great books and stories to read together. One recent resource I came across is the “I will Thank You” scripture and art journal from Kids Read Truth! So good!

3. Say it and show it! Take time with your kids to say “thank you”. Make a special card for a grandparent that watched the kids overnight, or the maillady that goes above and beyond with your mail, or the trash man who is faithful to pick up your trash each week. Take time and make cookies or buy a coke or coffee for that teacher who loves on your kids when you can’t. And do this with your kids by your side! Does it take you longer? yep! Can you whip up cookies during nap and be done with it? Probably? But look for ways to bring your kids in to the activity and chat about the whys and watch them grow in their own thankfulness.

What other ideas do you have? What has helped grow thankfulness in the heart of your little one?

Check out our Pinterest Board to see fun ideas to say and grow thankfulness in our little one’s heart! And of course, if you have an idea or resource to share, please do! That is how we grow and learn!

And let me say “Thank you” to each of you who continue to follow On Mission Moms! Thank you for sharing your ideas! Thank you for sharing these posts and inviting your friends to be on Mission with you!! Thank you for pushing me on toward more and more love for Christ and love for others!

Mission Ideas

Shoebox Gift Ideas for Little Gals

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We love putting together the Operation Christmas Child Shoeboxes each year and it’s such an easy way to get our little ones involved, from going to the store and buying a few items with their own money to actually putting the items in the box, coloring a picture and praying for their new friend who will receive it. We typically choose a little gal box because it’s easiest to connect with that for my girls. Here are some cute ideas that I’ve found that may be making their way into our box this year (or something similar)! I’ve found the best place to head is to the Dollar Aisle at Target, here at Amazon, or Hobby Lobby!




Are you noticing a theme here? My oldest just loves all things pink and princess right now so our sweet little gal around the world just had to get pink and princess too! We will be adding other items in the box too like flip flops, a shirt, a little notepad to color in, a toothbrush and of course a “masterpiece” that is already in the works!

What have you put in your box this year? Where have you found the best deals? Do you let your little one help you pick out the items? Be sure to check out the Service Idea link for ways to get your little one involved with you as you pack your shoebox! Also check out Samaritan’s Purse  for GREAT ideas to fill those boxes and for a list of items that you CAN’T put in the box!

 

*I am participating in an affiliate program so I do make a small percentage when you buy from the links that I have provided! Thank you for supporting On Mission Moms through your purchase!

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!)