What Does it Mean to Rest in God

What Does it Mean to Rest in God

What if resting in God isn’t an escape from pain but a posture we take through the pain?
When mom and dad died I had this supernatural fight in me to stay faithful to God and grounded in His truth (in spite of what my eyes were seeing). Girl, I put on that full armor of God and I went to battle every single stinkin’ day (Ephesians 6). I fought hard and I fought well by God’s grace. While many were questioning God, I had laser focus on what was eternally important. The fight got long, excruciating and exhausting but I saw God’s grace all over the place reminding me, “I’m still here” and that’s why I could take another step. I guess you could say my fight was to see Him and not the reality that was in front of me, which screamed “hopeless”.

 

Time went on and I got to move out of this constant place of war and into a place of rest but I don’t know what to do with it. In fact, I don’t know that I’ve ever known how to rest in God. I feel like a baby whose mom switches from milk to actual food for the first time and I’m saying to God, “what on earth am I supposed to do with this?! Why do I want to change what I’ve been doing, especially since it’s been of help to me? I’m scared to rest in You. What if you allow more pain? I’ve rested before and look what happened? Why are you calling me to rest when all I know is to fight?” As I kick and scream He gently reminds me that my fight morphed into fear and anxiety and my trust in him has turned into doubt of His goodness for me. I’ve been a proclaiming Christian for a long time but have I ever really known what it means to rest in God? If I’m not resting in Him, am I really trusting Him? There is a broken belief about Him, and I don’t know where the break happened. Naturally, in true Maria form of wanting to take control, I try to find the break so I can go back and fix but I can’t. Plus, every time I do attempt to fix the break, fear wells up and you can find me crying (quite literally) and screaming NO! Here’s the deal, our broken beliefs about who God is can NOT be fixed by us and must be fixed by Him. In my failed attempts to fix what is broken, I’ve exchanged his gift of rest for fear and worry and I need a Savior. Sometimes, I’m such a mess there is nothing I can do but keep the posture of calling out, confessing, repenting and asking “please Lord, not again…not another tragedy. Please don’t teach me about your goodness like that again.” I wait and I trust that He is faithful and able to do immeasurably more than I can ask or imagine being that someday, I will know what it means to rest in Him as I stay faithful. I can’t do this one on my own, I can’t save myself from my unbelief but He can and I trust He will.

 

Lord, help us not to return your good gifts of grace in exchange for anxiety, fear, and worry of the unknown. You are a good God and I ask that you show me just how good you are. Help me know what it means to receive your good gifts yet to still hold loosely to this world.
His Word covers our “what ifs…”

2 Timothy 1:7 “For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love, and self-discipline.”

James 1:17 “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”

Colossians 3:2,3 “Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.”

Isaiah 26:3 “You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.”

Philippians 4:8 “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable-if anything is excellent or praiseworthy-think about such things.”

Romans 8:28 “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to His purpose.”

Philippians 1:29 “For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe in him, but also to suffer for him …”

 

Learning to rest in Him & lean into His goodness,

Maria

5 Tips for Exclusively Pumping Mamas

5 Tips for Exclusively Pumping Mamas

There is no need to make this post any lengthier than it needs to be, so let’s get right to it …

5 Tips for Exclusively Pumping Mamas:

  1. Find a good app to document your pump schedule. I have been loving the Pump Log App because it’s easy to navigate and free!
  2. Don’t hassle with cleaning your pump supplies every time you pump. Instead, only clean pump supplies once a day by keeping the bottles and shields in your refrigerator after each pump. Doesn’t this sounds so much better than cleaning pump supplies after every single stinkin’ time you pump?!
  3. To go along with cleaning your supplies once a day, have enough bottles that you only have to wash and clean them one time a day. My goal is to help you only have to clean the bottles and pump supplies one time a day. You should not have to be at the sink cleaning bottles all day!
  4. Plan your pump schedule for the day at your first pump of the day. You will save yourself stress and time if you plan your pump schedule. Trust me on this one.
  5. Hands-free bra will become your best friend if you are an exclusive pumper. This is one item I would not go without, especially if you have more than one kid. In fact, I even pump in the car because of this item. Now, I have gotten pulled over while pumping but that’s for another blog post …
I hope these tips help save you hassle, stress and making pumping enjoyable because it can be! Be sure to check out How to Exclusively Pump for more helpful tips!
Photo Credit: Brittnee Burn Photography

How to Exclusively Pump

How to Exclusively Pump

My first baby was born in 2011. I worked tirelessly to exclusively breastfeed her. I tried every tip and trick in the book, but it just didn’t work out for me and for her. In fact, I wound up with mastitis 3 different times (if you’ve experienced mastitis, you are probably cringing right now). It got to be so bad that my Doctor asked me to be done breastfeeding her. At 6 months postpartum, I ended up weaning and formula feeding my first baby. Fast forward to baby 2 and, you could say, I wised up. I decided to be an exclusively pumping mom. The purpose in this was to avoid all of the issues I had with baby 1, and I’m so glad I made this choice. I’ve exclusively pumped my last 2 kids and learned some helpful tips along the way. I hope this post can bring some encouragement and help because there just isn’t enough information out there for exclusively pumping mamas. Below you will find a “How To” list to help you get started the right way with exclusive pumping.

How to Exclusively Pump
1) Make the decision at the hospital: if you want to get a full milk supply and not have any problems being an exclusive pumper, it is best to know that is what you are going to do right away. Ask your postpartum nurse for a pump and tell her you will be exclusively pumping. Note: hospitals have all of your pumping needs so you won’t need to bring anything for this, but you will want to make sure you have all the right equipment for when you get home.
2) Choose a good pump: for your sanity, please do not go the cheap route! If you are an exclusive pumper, you don’t want your pump pooping out on you. You will be in a major bind if this happens. The pump I recommend and used was Medela Breast Pump. This puppy lasted me all 3 kids (and I pumped for a year with 2 kids)! Be sure to check with you insurance company because you may get your Medela Pump free!
3) Make sure you have all of the right equipment: when you purchase your pump, all of the equipment should come with it and usually you can purchase anything at your local store. However, there are some pieces that must be ordered online like you tubing, so make sure to double check that you have all of the tools you need to start exclusively pumping when you get home from the hospital.
4) Pump 8 times a day: in the beginning, you will want to be sure you pump 8 times a day (about 120 min/day). It used to be standard to pump every 3 hours but that’s since changed. Plan out your pump schedule for the day and just make sure it includes 8 pumps. Note: I pumped 8 times a day for the first 2 months and eliminated a pump starting at 3 months. At 4 months, I eliminated another pump and only pumped 6 times a day and maintained this until my babies reached 12 months. This may work for you. If you notice your supply dropping, simply add your pumps back and be sure to pump 10-15 min each time.

Congratulations on your little one, Mama! I hope this post finds you happy, healthy and anticipating the arrival of your little bean! Be sure to visit 5 Tips for Exclusively Pumping Mamas for more helpful information!

 

(photo credit: Brittnee Burn Photography)