Welcome to the first installment of The Connection, a monthly newsletter for RBC moms! We’ve selected a couple articles for you to read below, and you can download the entire edition of The Connection – October 2013 here.
This Is My Job | Maggie Kolb
I think I post at least once a year on Facebook that I wish there was a way to “magic” laundry away. I can’t be the only person who struggles with this, because a bunch of my friends like and comment on it. I don’t know why it surprises me that laundry will need to be done, but I know if I ignore it for a few days, mayhem breaks out. This leads to a Grumpy Maggie. God has been speaking to me about how I treat my role at home. Through conversations, blogs, friends, Pinterest, Facebook, and mentors a message pops up over and over: This is my job, and I should do it with a joyful heart. It is my choice to go to God and ask the Holy Spirit to fill me with joy there. It is my choice to reframe my thoughts about the tasks I have to do on a daily basis. I am BLESSED to do this on a daily basis. I also needed to let the kids do a bit more.
Attitude is everything. If I take the lead on a chore with a cheerful disposition, and make things a game, the kids follow suit. Because a joyful heart is like medicine. How can the kids be grumpy when Mom is making Lego-cleaning a race? Throwing dirty socks at your head while sorting laundry? Playing praise music while cleaning the kitchen? I began to use the techniques I used with the kids on myself, and soon enough, I was approaching my day with a happy heart.
I also began to let go of some of the tasks I had taken control of because I did them the best. My 15-year old daughter does most of her laundry now, and I don’t care how it is folded, or shoved in her drawers. I let my son vacuum, and don’t nitpick about how he missed a spot. Delegation will always be a work in progress for me, but the happiness I feel when my kids can do something for themselves is motivation, indeed.
It’s okay to have bad days, but God is teaching me to find joy in the ordinary and everyday, because that is what my life is made of. I wash laundry, and clean toilets, and I am thrilled when that recipe idea I finally tried from Pinterest worked out. When Julia and Joseph look back at their childhood, I want them to remember me as a woman who loved the position the Lord gave her.
Maggie Kolb is wife to Kim, mom to Julia (15) and Joseph (10), is a green smoothie fanatic and collector of peacocks, owls, and nail polish.
Like Gideon | Kristyn Cole
I sat on my hardwood floor, legs awkwardly propped on the wall, pinning my two-year-old son into the small alcove of our hallway. We were on another marathon of timeouts and I crumpled into a pathetic ball of pity for myself. My three-month old twins howled in the living room because I had to stop nursing them to put my son in timeout. “This is too hard,” I whimpered, milk leaking on my spit-up stained shirt. With tears of desperation, I prayed out loud for guidance. “God, how am I supposed to do this because it obviously isn’t working? I am outnumbered and I feel defeated.”
“God, how am I supposed to do this? Give me the strength and wisdom to raise these boys to honor you.” It is a prayer I pray often. I whisper that prayer as I stand in my sleeping babies’ rooms while the scent of lavender baths lingers on chubby bodies and washes the day’s frustrations away. I also pray this prayer when I am broken and battered, waving the white flag of surrender. When sticker charts, Bible verses read aloud from index cards, positive affirmation, reverse psychology and timeouts have not yielded desired results. When every trick in my mommy bag has been used, I pray this prayer. It is a prayer I pray continuously because the magnitude of what God has called me to do is so overwhelming at times I question and doubt the task He has laid before me. I have been called to raise these young boys to be men of God. I am living among the pages of the ultimate underdog story. I am on a quest to raise children that will go against the grain of everything our culture values, and walk with Christ. Does God really trust me with this task when I can’t even keep my toddler from pushing other children at the park? I often feel like Gideon, scared and doubtful, marching off to defeat the Midianites with a whittled army of 300.
But on this particular day, I felt God speaking through my tired body. I was to teach my son through patience and love. This simple concept, taught in the early years of Sunday school, ignited a flame inside me. God wasn’t just calling me to help teach my son patience when taking turns or when waiting for his soup to cool off. He is disciplining me to learn to discipline with patience, through love, one timeout at a time. In the difficult times of disciplining little ones, I was to be patient and loving, as God is with me. We rarely talk about the patient God. Yet, time and time again, God shows us through His word His patience for us. When Gideon, marked by his weakness, questioned God about how to execute the Lord’s plan to save Israel, God responded to him by saying “I will be with you” (Judges 6:16). When Gideon questioned if God was truly speaking to him, God responded by saying, “I will wait until you return” (Judges 6:19).
My toddler doesn’t understand why he shouldn’t push others. He doesn’t understand why dragging his baby brother across the floor isn’t a loving action. He doesn’t understand a lot, yet; much like his mother. What I do understand is that the bible instructs me to teach my child, to discipline my child and to be patient and loving while doing so. We are both learning. When God blessed me with surprise twins born 20 months apart from their older brother, like Gideon, I felt weak, outnumbered and defeated. Yes, there are numerous blessings on this journey but the days are long, the tasks physically exhausting and the challenges mentally draining. In fact, God told Gideon that his army must be small and the task must seem near impossible or Israel would boast of their own strength saving them. (Judges 7:2). No matter how many children you may have, chances are you have felt like Gideon at times, weak and defeated. God’s love and patience for us is infinite, no matter how impossible the situation may appear. He is willing to love us, no matter how many timeouts it takes.
Kristyn Cole is a Northern Virginia native who lives in Chantilly with her husband and Patriots fan, Ryan. Together they are blessed with 3 boys: Tyson, 2 and six-month-old identical twins, Gavin and Jackson.
Join us Friday, April 19, through Sunday, April 21, for the 2013 Reston Bible Church Women’s Retreat.
The Women’s Retreat is for all women, college age and above, who desire to step aside from their daily routine and focus their hearts and minds on our Lord Jesus Christ for an entire weekend. The retreat will include wonderful Biblical teaching, Christ centered worship, and small group discussion. Saturday afternoon is whatever you want it to be. You can attend a workshop, participate in a service project, spend time with friends, join other women in a planned activity, read a book, or just take a nap.
The retreat is a unique opportunity to gather with other women of RBC. It’s a time to deepen existing Christ-centered friendships and develop new ones; a time to connect with women in your stage of life; a time to meet women across the generations. It is a great opportunity to find community. We hope to see you there!
Dear Ladies of RBC,
I’m writing to personally invite you to the Reston Bible Church annual Women’s Retreat at the Doubletree Hotel in Sterling. The retreat begins Friday, March 9, 2012 at 7 p.m. and ends at 11:00 am on Sunday, March 11, 2012. We’ll enjoy worshiping together, Biblical teaching, small groups plus time to just hang out and have fun.
I highly recommend that you stay at the hotel for the entire weekend so that you can enjoy the full retreat experience—being able to put away distractions, unplug and refocus. The rooms are beautifully decorated and equipped with either two queen beds or one king bed…and I’ve heard they’re really comfortable. But if you would prefer to sleep at home we do offer a “day only” option (you’ll be assigned a small group just like those staying at the hotel). Both options include three delicious meals on Saturday and Sunday breakfast and all the hotel amenities.
The retreat is for all ladies college age and above. If it’s your first retreat and you’re worried about not having a roommate, don’t let that keep you away. There are always other ladies looking for someone to room with. I’ve met some really great ladies that way. I’ve been to many retreats over the 20+ years I’ve attended RBC and have come away not only having met new women but also encouraged in my walk with God. I’ve enjoyed true Christian fellowship around God’s word and just plain old fun. Trust me…this is something you won’t want to miss.
The theme for this weekend is Ruler of My Heart and we’re excited to have Margaret Ashmore from Denton Bible Church in Denton, Texas as our speaker. Margaret’s heart is to help women come to the understanding that the safest place to be on this earth is in the loving, shielding protection of submitting their lives to Jesus Christ. I trust that you’ll be blessed and challenged by what she’ll be sharing with us.
I’d also like to ask for your help. Volunteering to work on a retreat committee is one of the ways I was able to meet so many new people over the years. We have many ways you can be of service and I think you’ll really enjoy being a part of one of these teams. (You can indicate on the registration form where you’d like to serve.)
Prayer Team-will pray before and during the retreat. If you have a heart to cover all aspects of the retreat from planning through the final session, then we welcome you to join with other women with the same desire. There will be morning prayer sessions both Saturday and Sunday during the retreat.
- Registration Table: will check in women as they arrive at retreat. If you are organized and good with details, this is the job for you.
- Greeters: will welcome ladies to the retreat and into each session. This is a wonderful way to show hospitality, whether you’re an extrovert or just someone with a heart to make others feel welcome.
- Table Hostesses: will welcome ladies to their table at mealtimes and make sure everyone is included. If you have a desire to show Christ’s love and encourage other women here’s your opportunity.
To get more information and register go to www.restonbible.org/womensretreat. No matter your season in life I trust the weekend will prove to be worth your while. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call or email me.
Director, Women’s Ministry
New RBC women’s Bible studies kick off in September 2011! For more info and online registration, visit https://www.restonbible.org/women/biblestudies
You know the old saying “The best laid plans…”? Well, God has His own plan and it always, without fail, turns out to be the right one. After many months of planning for the Ladies Annual Retreat we, Barb, Bridget and I, arrived at Sandy Cove the weekend of March 5-7 full of anticipation and excitement. We had decided to try some new things and were eager to see if they would work and how they would be received. And I think we were even a little worried that we had somehow forgotten something. As the ladies began to arrive, there were the sounds of welcoming those we’d just seen at church the previous Sunday as well as the squeals of delight at being reunited with those who we hadn’t seen since the last retreat.
There was an excitement in the air at the prospect of sharing a weekend away from home… eating meals we didn’t have to cook, sleeping in beds we wouldn’t have to make and laughing at jokes that only we would get. But all those things, while good, are not the real reason we make that two hour trip up 95 on a Friday afternoon. And maybe I speak only for myself, but at the heart of it what I was really wondering was “What does God have in store for us this weekend?” and “How will He make Himself known to us in a new way?”
For those women of Reston Bible Church who have sat under sound biblical teaching for, well, forever, most of us entered the weekend titled “Love, Loss and Legacy” (centering around the story of Ruth) with our own knowledge and opinions. After all, it is of one of the great love stories in the Bible. What we didn’t anticipate is how the story would change us all individually and so differently. I’m not sure any one of us could have been prepared for all that God would bring to light through Kelly’s study and teaching. Each lady who attended came away with a view of that amazing story through a new lens. Some of us may have learned a hard lesson about forgiveness, others about loyalty, still others about how to just be still and simply hear from God and let Him guide our paths. I truly believe that every lady came away with a changed point of view about those three women in Ruth who began a journey and the paths they each chose.
As we watched the weekend unfold, we saw God use the plans we’d made in ways we couldn’t even have imagined as well as bring some surprises of His own. At first we may have resisted some of those, but as we watched God work, I believe one thing we all walked away with from that weekend was a greater sense of awe for the God we serve… and we could all use a lot more awe.
Bridget Goetz shares her story of God’s faithfulness as He drew her out of self-reliance to deep dependence on Christ. This video was originally shown at the 2010 Reston Bible Church Women’s Retreat.