Monday, July 28, 2014

Get to Know Me Blog Hop


Well. The first thoughts I have about the image above is... "That sounds a bit self-centered." Ugh.

Let me explain.

I was invited by Katie Reid to participate in a writer's blog hop, where I'll answer 4 questions about my writings (always the same four questions). Then by introducing  3 of my blogger friends, I "pass the baton" to them and they answer the questions. I couldn't find 3 bloggers who wanted to participate, because they had already done it, were doing it soon, or were too busy to do it now. So, I will introduce 3 of my blogging friends without expecting them to answer the questions again.



Here goes.....my answers to the 4 questions....

1. What am I writing or working on?

I just got done with a 40 day prayer challenge for wives. Right now I'm in a bit of a dry season when it comes to writing. I have all these thoughts and great inspirations, but somehow getting them on paper isn't working so well. At first I felt bad. Almost guilty.

Then panic set in. If you're a blogger you get that. Thoughts like "what if I lose all my readers?" "What will they think?" That lasted for maybe 1 minute, because the fact is,

I need to take a blogging break. Maybe just a slow down.

The #1 reason I haven't felt led to share many of my writings is because I need to focus more on my first ministry: my marriage, my family, my home. I haven't actually been neglecting them...blogging has always been second to all that. But, what blogging does do is take time, energy and a lot of emotion. I need a blogging break and He has finally given me the OK to take it!

However, I won't stop writing because the second reason I need to slow down is because I have felt convicted to focus more on writing a book. Will it happen soon? Nope! Will it happen in a year...maybe. Maybe not. I don't know. While I am excited about all this, you probably don't need to get your hopes up! Nevertheless, that is what I'm working on long term.

To all my blogger and writing friends, if you have published a book, PLEASE share which publishing company you chose or if you chose the self-publishing route and why? This little Amish girl is quite lost in this world of techy-talk. Any advice would be appreciated!



2. How does my writing differ from others in its genre?

I have no idea. Is that an answer?

There aren't many blogs whose greatest focus is on a wife's character and role.

Maybe mine is different because I'm a teacher at heart. Most of what I've written doesn't have a personal testimony or story line approach. But, most of what I've shared has an educational aspect, practical wisdom and biblical approach. I like diving into His word, so what I share must be backed up and proven by it.



3. Why do I write what I do?

This one is easy...

Because I have to!!!

You don't understand that, do you?

See, I scorned writing, speaking and blogging until about 10 months ago, when God once again convicted me that I am to be involved in women's ministry. I say "again" because when He first tried, I gave Him a flat out "no". I said something like this, "Go find someone else. You've got the wrong Kaylene in mind. Nope, not doing it."

....can anyone relate? Or is it just me?! ugh.

That was 3 1/2 to 4 years ago. All that time, I couldn't ignore Him, and I couldn't run away.

When I finally said "yes, Lord," I also tacked on "but don't make me speak and don't make me write."

... I wonder if you're smiling because you know what's coming...

Now I write, and have had the honor of holding my first speaking engagement.

I love both.

Why? Because it's all His plan.

I write what I do because when I obediently pick up a pen and start writing, His words fill the page. 


4. How does my writing process work?

Uummm... I'm drawing a blank again.

I don't have a process.

Furthermore, I didn't know I needed one!

I just write....I write when it's hard. I write when is easy. I write when its a joy. I write through the tears. I write when its a sacrifice. I write as an offering.

As close to a process that I can think of is, I usually write in the morning before my family wakes, or during my children's nap times/quiet times, so maybe that's a process?

I don't know....I just know that for now, I'm supposed to write. 

So I do.

Well, I've answered all the questions on the list. I must say this is one of the more personal posts I've shared. It feels good to share a little of my story, my feelings, maybe even a little of my spunk? (smile)


There are many of you who have asked questions or would like to ask questions about me. Some have, others aren't sure it's OK to ask.

So, to this post, I will also add a few questions I get asked about myself and my blog, ALL THE TIME.


1. Why don't you write about the Amish? This mostly comes from ex-Amish people, so this answer is directed toward that crowd.

Because that's not what He wants. Moreover, I refuse to write about past wrongs or dig up old bones when His word tells us to "forgive as He forgives" (Matt6) and to "strain toward what is ahead, pressing on toward the goal" (Phil3). How much heavenly 'goal reaching' are we going to do if we keep dwelling in the past?

Proverbs 17:9 says "He who covers over an offense promotes love, but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends." (NIV) Other translations say "one who dwells on disputes will alienate a friend" (NRS) "gossiping about the sin breaks up friendships" (NCV) "he who keeps talking of a thing makes division between friends" (BBE). Personally, I don't want to be around people who are always bad mouthing others. It's exhausting. It's angering. It causes dissension, one of the 7 abominations. (Proverbs 6)

So, no, you will not find any Amish bashing on this blog. EVER. I lost a lot of readers when this was discovered. How sad. But, neither do I care. I don't need that negative energy.

I prefer to learn and grow from hurts and wrongs, not dwell in them. Doesn't mean I don't still feel them. Doesn't mean I don't know how you feel. But, it does mean, if you want to get fired up about hurts in your past then you'll need to take yourself to an actual Amish hate blog. They can be found.

Strong words? Yes. Facts are tough sometimes.


2. Is your writing affected by your heritage? This comes from non-Amish.

I used to think, no. But, I've come to accept that yes, my writing is affected by my heritage. Amish is who I was for 22 years. You can't live that much life rooted in a setting and not be largely affected by it, whether positively or negatively. Many of the values or principles found in my writings, I learned through my parents, family, and the quiet, slower pace the Amish life brings.

3. Do I miss it? This comes from both ex-Amish and non-Amish, and always feels like a trick question!

Amish culture? No.

Quiet life? Yes.

Can a quiet Christian life be established without the Amish setting? Yes. And we try, because that's what we love. Simple is better. Relaxed is rejuvenating. Quiet is sane. Slower goes too fast. I can't imagine making what goes so fast, go even faster by adding an excessive amount of going or an over abundance of doing.

Do you have a burning question you'd like to ask me? Go ahead and ask in the comments below! I'd love to hear from you!



Now I will introduce my 3 friends. These ladies have been a pleasure to get to know through the world of blogs. I hope you hop over and read a few of their writings. You will be blessed!

Introducing Katie:
Picture

Katie Reid is a recovering perfectionist, who is learning to slow down and breathe deeply, as she fumbles to receive and extend grace in the everyday moments. She delights in her hubby and four children and their life in ministry. Studying God's Word, singing/songwriting, blogging, photography, and heartfelt conversations are a few of her favorite things. She blogs at Echoes of My Heart and also has an album by the same name on Amazon. She'd love to connect with you on Facebook and Twitter.

I met Katie through her #inspireandgrow link-up party. We have further found common ground in that she lives among an Amish community. Here she has shared a few things she has observed from 'across the fence'. I love the honesty and heart in her writings. I love her energy! There's never a boring moment when reading her blog.



This is Laura:
Laura Connell head shot
Laura shares, “God’s Girl is my love letter to Jesus. The goal is for the blog to be a place where women gather to grow in confidence and walk in freedom through knowledge of the Word and a deepening relationship with Christ.
Through the truth of Scripture I have been healed of many addictions and hang-ups including body image issues, alcoholism, post-abortion trauma, anger, and people-pleasing.
I believe God speaks to each of us individually through the verses of Scripture according to our spiritual needs. He meets us there and teaches us to grow and change so we can walk in the freedom His Son bought for us with His blood.”
You can find Laura Connell at: God’s Girl – Growing together through Christ.
I met Laura through her weekly link-up party. She was so sweet as to further share the blog post I shared there. Her presence and faithful readership of my blog ramblings is very appreciated. Her writings breathe of her gentle healing spirit. Truly a blessing to get to know. I hope you take a moment to visit her.


This is my sweet friend Beth:


Beth Stiff is Simply Beth, at least that’s what her blog is called. A wife to her Army Reserve husband and a mom of two boys, with her oldest son serving in the Navy, and a mother-in-law too. She a Jesus lover, a family gal who loves her friends, and reading with a hot cup of coffee. Her life is changed, even after 20 years of marriage with a love that grows stronger. But the bottom line, is in the heart. Beth loves the heart things and to speak about the Love that changed her and keeps changing her. She’s an encourager who thrives on being in our corner. You can also find her over here, bloggingTwitteringFacebooking, and posting pictures to the Pinterest world.
I have no idea how I met Beth. Maybe through her weekly Three Word Wednesday Link-up?? Maybe through a comment she left on my blog? How ever we met, she has turned into a very dear friend. She was my first "blogger friend". The one who reached out and made me feel welcome and heard in this crazy blogging world. This is nothing new. That's just what Beth does; she cares. Just a sweet, sweet lady, loved by many. I am beyond honored to introduce her to you.


Remember that book publishing advice you had? Yeah. I need that.
What about that burning question you wanted to ask? 
Now would be a good time to ask it! Please use the comment section below.


I might be sharing with these wonderful blogs.

Friday, July 25, 2014

40 Prayers to Pray Over Your Husband



Attention: This is the post you'll want to save, pin, share, bookmark, whatever you do to keep something easily accessible!


We have such a huge impact on our husband's life and our family's legacy by simply turning to prayer; the all powerful, life changing, uninterrupted connection to our Lord and Savior, so below you will find links to 40 prayers to pray over your husband. >>TWEET THIS<<

I wish I could wrap it up, slap a bow on top and give it to you in person, because simply putting them here in this numbered row, on this cold stark screen, does not do justice to how I feel about them or how I would like to give them to you. .....maybe I should put them in a book..... that dream still seems so far away. Yet, it is a dream and someday it just might happen....it just might happen!

In the meantime, this little tech-illiterate Amish girl with peck them out on her keyboard and trust someone will be blessed by them. All the while knowing, He will reach who needs reaching, send who needs sending, and bless who needs blessing, in His time and in His way.

I love these prayers and what they have done for us. Namely, how my heart has softened toward my husband. They are heartfelt, written with lots of love and care, prayed with deepest sincerity and faith.

So today, if you are here struggling in your marriage, feeling a disconnect somewhere, maybe a wall is under construction or maybe that wall has been there for years, whatever your story, I trust that with your faithfulness in turning to unrelenting prayer, you will first be transformed and then see your marriage transformed into a beautiful testimony for Him.




5. His Faith 
13. His Feet 
18. His Joy


Don't forget to save and share!

 Sharing with....The Missional Call, Essential Thing Devotions, A Look at the Book, Beauty Observed, Nancherrow, Counting My Blessings, Children are a Blessing, Renewed Daily, Sandra Heska King, A Proverbs 31 Wife, Soul Survival, The Beauty in His Grip, Marriage Motherhood and Missions, Moms the Word, What Joy is Mine, The Modest Mom, Yes they are all Ours, The Wellspring, She Lives Free, Cornerstone Confessions, The Time-Warp Wife, Teaching What Is  Good, Rich Faith Rising, diamonds in the Rough,Juana Mikels 7 days Time

Friday, July 18, 2014

Five Minute Friday: Bloom of Iron

Over at lisajobaker.com the fabulous Lisa hosts a weekly blog party called Five Minute Friday.

The rules are simple:

  1. She decides on a one-word writing prompt. This week it is "Bloom".
  2. Bloggers everywhere set their timers for five minutes.
  3. Our pens fly....can you hear the frantic scritchety-scratch? 
  4. We publish our five-minute masterpiece & share with the world. 


Bloom....Flowers....."Bloom where you are planted."

Those are thoughts that came to mind at first.

But, that's what most others thought, too. So that was too easy. Too mainstream for me. (smile)

Yes, I want to bloom where I'm planted. I also want to my children to bloom where they are planted...graciously, peacefully, beautifully. But also strongly, firmly and courageously.

Then a bloom of iron came to mind.

   iron bloom

An iron bloom is the mass of iron left over after iron ore has been smelted. After enduring the fire and the oxides have been  removed, this iron bloom can then be heated and shaped into tools, sculptors, towers and building material. The iron bloom after being heated, shaped and pounded becomes wrought iron. Wrought iron will last virtually forever if painted and maintained regularly. (1)

Like all raw iron ore, we have impurities in our soul. When we come under fire, the trials of life, we must persevere and endure, so the oxides, impurities of our souls, are slowly removed and we become a mold-able spirit.

Like the iron bloom, when in the fire we are being shaped into whatever the Master Crafter has in mind.

Like the iron bloom, we will emerge stronger, becoming a wrought iron pillar of faith leaving a legacy that will endure throughout generations.

Although wrought iron is used less today than it was in generations past, wrought iron sculptors and towers are still standing today. The most famous would probably be the Eiffel Tower, standing since 1889.





I want to bloom where I'm planted. But, I don't want to be like a flower whose beauty lasts only a few days, or wilts in the heat of the day.

I want to be like the iron bloom, mold-able, enduring, and persevering. Emerging  from the fires a strong, sturdy, immovable, intimidating, unyielding, stout-hearted bloom of iron; a flower of everlasting faith.


"You made me bold and stouthearted."
~Psalm 138:3~

"Surely he will never be shaken;
a righteous man will be remembered forever."
~Psalm 112:6~

He alone is my rock and my salvation;
He is my fortress,
I will not be shaken."
~Psalm 62:6~







Wednesday, July 16, 2014

40 Prayers for my Husband: His Future


...sigh...we have come to day 40. I'm sad. But, I don't plan to stop praying for my husband today! He has experienced so many benefits from this prayer challenge. Not to mention, or make it all about me, but....so have I!!! (smile)

I hope these 40 days have strengthened your resolve to pray for your husband daily. It sure has mine! I trust you have seen an answer to many of these prayers and your own, more personalized prayers, either the day you prayed them or progress in the area we prayed for.

What an awesome ride this challenge has been for us! Most days it seemed the prayer of the day was exactly what needed to be prayed over that day. Here are a few of those times:

1. My husbands business future looked bleak and we were needing to pinch pennies. The day I prayed the prayer for His Work, He got 3 calls establishing enough work to provide finances for most of the summer. It didn't stop there. He has been getting regular calls ever since. How awesome is our God!

2. The day I prayed over His Wisdom he made some of the wisest choices in his life. His future and our families future will be forever impacted by his wise standing.

3. The day I prayed over His Patience was a challenging day of parenting. I was exhausted emotionally and physically. He stepped in and dealt patiently with his children and his tired wife. What a blessing!

4. The day I wrote, (not the day I posted) but the day I wrote and personally prayed for my husbands Spiritual Leadership, he expressed a desire to be more diligent in doing family devotions. Praise the Lord!

These are only a few!

Whether or not you have seen or heard an answer, He hears you when you pray. Do not lose heart. Continue praying faithfully. He will not let you labor in the spirit for your husband's soul without a good and abundant return. He is faithful and just. Always. 

We need only be patient and let Him work His perfect will in His perfect timing. 

Blessings to you and your husband!

Prayer #40. His Future

Father, thank You for this man You have set in my life to lead me and our family. I pray you will give him a clear vision of what Your plan is for him. I pray that he will not pursue things of his own will but seek You first in all things, so he can lead us in the way that is good, right and beneficial to each member of our family.
Instruct him, Lord, even as he sleeps in the way You would have him go. Stay at his right hand so he will not be shaken. (Ps.16:7) You have promised to give to each person that which he has done. I pray my husband will be a man who persistently seeks to do good so that he may inherit eternal life. (Romans2:6-7)
Father, surround him with Your mighty wings, illuminate the path You would have him walk, strengthen him to march courageously onward, whether the storm is favorable or unfavorable, always willing to obey You. May he make his plans by seeking advice from You or sound counsel from godly men. (Pr.20:18) I pray he would always be careful to live uprightly and act wisely, never letting an opportunity to bring glory to You go to waste. (Eph.5:15-16)
Lead him ever in the way that is right, so that it may go well with him, his marriage, and his descendants. In Jesus' precious name. Amen.

"Whether it be favorable or unfavorable,
we will obey the Lord our God,...
so that it may go well with us"
~ Jeremiah 42:6 ~


I wonder if you too had profound answers to the daily prayers? I trust you did or will in the future. I'd love to hear your story!


Sharing with... Raising Homemakers, Simply Beth, A Soft Gentle Voice, Holley Gerth, Woman 2 Woman, Messy Marriage, So Much at Home, Wake Up Wednesdays, Serving Joyfully, Jenni Mullinix, Joy Dare Photography Blog, Graced Simplicity, Imparting Grace, Jennifer Dukes Lee, Eat Sleep Be, Creative K Kids, 7 Days Time, Nancherrow, A Look at the Book, Counting my Blessings, A Proverbs 31 Wife, Mom's the Word, Cornerstone Confessions

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

40 Prayers for my Husband: His Past




A man's history can have an incredible hold on the way he sees life and responds to its challenges. Whether its something that happened in his childhood or is a more recent happening, today we pray for him to be released and set free from any bondage that may have set in.

To have his wife pray for him to be freed from past hurts, heartaches or sin, will open opportunities for him to walk through that door of complete freedom. We know the human mind cannot willfully forget, but we can pray that he will choose to let it go and forgive those who hurt him. For him to chose to be set free, will not only benefit him, but his marriage, his children and generations to come.

Prayer #39. His Past

Dear Jesus, You are our Healer. Thank You that You are able to set us free from all things past and present. You heal the brokenhearted and bind up their wounds. (Pr.147:3) You have made a way for us to experience true freedom, and for that, I humbly thank You.
Bind up my husbands wounds, Jesus. Soothe his heart. Pour grace and mercy into him so that he can forgive those who have hurt him. While it may be hard to forget what has been done to him, or what hasn't been done for him, I pray he would not lose heart, but be renewed day by day. May he see that his troubles on earth are but momentary, so he can fix his eyes on You and cling tightly to Your great promises. (2Cor.4:16-18)
Father, You have told us to let go of former things and not dwell on the past. (Is.43:16,18-19) I pray my husband will not live in the past, or let it dictate him in any way. Instead, heighten his ability to do better for his children than was done for him. Strengthen him to stand against any generational sins that may be holding onto him. Help him see that You have a great and wonderful plan for him and all generations following him. Show him that he is the one You are calling to set a new direction, a new and worthy heritage for his descendants; that You are capable of renewing all things, establishing a way through the desert of generational bandage and making streams of life flow through wastelands of sin and pain. I stand against any powers and principalities of darkness that have been making him believe otherwise, and proclaim my husband is an over-comer and though thousands fall around him, he will not be shaken.
Father, I pray that through his complete deliverance, he would grow to have an appreciation for his past. Match and multiply the days of his gladness in proportion to his affliction. (Ps.90:15) May his past serve only as a reminder of what he has overcome, and result in great praise to You for his healing and growth. May only peace, joy, thankfulness and greater faith come from the pain he has endured. In Jesus' name. Amen.

"do not lose heart....
For our light and momentary troubles
are achieving for us an eternal glory
that far outweighs then all.
So we fix our eyes
not on what is seen,
but on what is unseen."
~2 Corinthians 4:16-18~

Monday, July 14, 2014

40 Prayers for my Husband: His Habits



"for a man is a slave
to whatever has mastered him."
~ 1 Peter 2:19 ~

Be it a substance addiction or a habitual activity that consumes him, today I pray that my husband will not be mastered by anything on this earth.

Prayer #38. His Habits

Father, You have sent Your Holy Spirit to live in us. Our very bodies are His temple. I pray my husband will let nothing consume his body, mind or time that would destroy him. For you have said, he who destroys Your temple You will destroy also. (1Cor.3:16-17)
I pray he will not be addicted to any  food or substance that is harmful to his health, not participating in drunkenness or gluttony. I pray he will not be tempted to sin against his body, Your temple, by using and participating in pornography, sexual immorality, orgies or the like. Keep his mind pure. Do not let him fall into the habitual ways of thinking that come from jealousy, anger, dissensions, witchcraft, idolatry, or dissensions. Remove any tendencies to gratify the flesh or seek self satisfaction. (Gal.5:19-21) Do not let him be a man mastered by sinful desires. (2Pet.2:19) Instead, establish in him a clean heart with pure motives matched by the will and strength to stand against the enemies temptations. 
I stand humbly before You, Lord, asking that You keep my husband from willful sin. Do not let him be ruled by his flesh. (Ps.19:13) Surround him with Your mighty protection. Lift him when he stumbles, carry him when he is weak. Strengthen him when he is tempted, convict him to persevere in what he knows is good, for this will establish a greater faith in him. (James1) Remind him to be careful how he lives-not as unwise but as wise, making the best choice in every situation. (Eph.5:15) After he has persevered, may he praise You knowing he can do all things through Your Son who gives him strength.(Phil.4:13) In Jesus' precious name. Amen.

"Keep your servant from willful sins;
may they not rule over me.
Then will I be blameless,
innocent of great transgression."
~ Psalm 19:13 ~


Sharing with... A Proverbs 31 Wife

Sunday, July 13, 2014

40 Prayers for my Husband: His Emotions




"He who trust in his own heart is a fool,
but he who walks on wisdom is kept safe."
~Proverbs 28:26~

Praying for my husbands emotions, doesn't occur to me very often, but it is a very vital prayer. This prayer will open paths for him to experience peace beyond understanding, helping him know that its okay to be human and have feelings. It will also help him express his emotions without feeling ashamed.

Prayer #37. His Emotions

Father, thank You that You have given my husband a sound mind and teachable heart. You are the great Instructor. I pray You would instruct my husband regarding his emotions, letting him know that its OK to feel and its OK to express. Free him to be able to express his emotions in healthy ways and not bottle them up inside. Let him not be ashamed to show sorrow. Help him also smile and laugh, so he isn't always weighted down by seriousness.
I pray You would far remove any diseases of the mind or unhealthy emotional behaviors like anger, depression, indifference, fear, hopelessness or suicidal thoughts. Deliver him from any negative ways of thinking. Help him not be anxious about anything, but in everything give thanks. (Phil.4:6-7) When he feels depressed, remind him to call upon Your name and You will give him peace that passes all understanding. You will supply him with great joy in Your presence. Redeem his soul, spare him from sinking him into despair. (Ps.30:3)
When he is angry or frustrated give him the wisdom and strength to control his words and actions. Do not let him be controlled by anger, or fits of rage. Instead renew in him a gentle, understanding spirit.
I pray he would not be a jealous man who is always seeking but never finding; always wanting and lacking contentment. Jealousy itself develops greed and frustration. Pour into his heart thanksgiving and appreciation for what he has been given.
Father, anoint him with Your oil of joy (Is.61:3) renewing him, strengthening him and empowering him against any effects negative emotions bring. In Jesus' name. Amen.


"The Lord redeems His servants;
no one will be condemned
who takes refuge in Him."
~ Psalm 34:22 ~