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Preview: Help!! I'm Overwhelmed by my Blessings!

Help! I'm Overwhelmed by my Blessings!

motivating and encouraging wives and moms

Last Build Date: Sat, 17 Feb 2018 13:31:26 +0000


Tue, 05 Dec 2017 15:29:00 +0000

This reading plan was published this week on YouVersion.  It's a 6-day plan so you won't be overloaded during this busy holiday season.  I hope you will read and share with your friends.  Let me know your thoughts!

Mary was a Mom

Fri, 10 Nov 2017 13:38:00 +0000


The I Am of All I Ams

I recently completed a YouVersion reading plan "The Book of Mysteries" by Jonathan Cahn. Day 2 of this plan was mind-blowing and life altering for me.  

Mr Cahn shares with his readers the name of God, YHVH, (Yahweh) the sacred name of God that is fairly familiar to Bible readers. 

"It is the most sacred of Names, so sacred some refuse to say it. And yet you say it all the time."

"When you speak of yourself, you say the Name. When you feel happy, you say, 'I am happy.' And when you're not, you say 'I am sad'. When you tell others who you are, you say, 'I am' followed by your name. "YHVH means 'I Am.'

Isn't that profound?  God is so woven into our existence that we aren't able to speak of ourselves without first speaking of Him!  

This realization has made me very aware that when I speak negative words about myself, I am actually taking His name in vain!  I am His precious, chosen daughter.  He created me for good works, yet many times I am blasting near profanities in His face when I speak negatively about myself.  

Let's all be careful when we are tempted to say, "I am worthless, I am stupid, I am a bad mom."  Instead, let's remember that He is our origin, our creator, who gives us our very breath, and let's praise Him remembering that "I am enough" because I AM goes before me!!

I highly recommend this plan.

Let's Do This!

Mon, 23 Oct 2017 19:33:00 +0000

I have been completely overwhelmed (in a good way!), by your comments and emails regarding the YouVersion Bible plans I wrote and submitted this year!  Thank you!

Your comments have inspired me to use this blog again.  I won't commit to a regular writing schedule, but I will be posting here, so hold me accountable! 

I have some good news!  

Read that!  Week 8 was submitted just today, and will be published on October 30.  I can't wait to share it with you.  

Keep those comments and emails coming.  You are a blessing to me!

You Version Bible Plan

Thu, 22 Dec 2016 15:28:00 +0000

If you clicked on this very outdated blog, it may be because you read the You Version Bible reading plan for moms.

I hope you find words of encouragement and hope from my life experiences. Additional devotional days will be coming in January.

Overwhelmed by my Blessings: Encouragement for Moms

You can also read another plan I wrote, Choices.


Tue, 29 Jun 2010 07:42:00 +0000

I'm doing a little bit of blog thinking and have recently moved our blog over to this one. Still unsure what my plans are. I'd like to get back to least occasionally.

For Married Men

Sun, 28 Feb 2010 20:13:00 +0000

Saturday, Dirk and I had the opportunity to share during three breakout sessions during a marriage seminar.  This is the hand-out Dirk compiled for the men.  Have any more thoughts or suggestions to add?  Wives, your input is encouraged too!

For the Men

LOVE your wife…with actions and words.  Ex:  open her car door, praying, reading your Bible, tithe, help put the children to bed.

Be the head…not the tail! (or the butt) Spiritually lead her!

Tell her she’s beautiful.

Listen better….turn off the TV or gaming system.

Write love notes

Bring small gifts…it really is the thought that counts!

Give her longer kisses…not just the peck on your way out the door.

Leave work at work.

Continue to pursue her…even though you’ve already caught her.

Hold her hand.

E-mail and text her

Take her on surprise dates

Take care of the cars

Finish those home repair projects (or hire someone to finish them)

Read your Bible and pray out loud for your family

Give her lots of cuddle time

Be her best friend

Tell her you love her often….and tell her why.

Share your dreams with her:  Family Vision

What Do You Think?

Thu, 25 Feb 2010 21:01:00 +0000


Which is God more interested in?  Our holiness or our happiness?

What are your thoughts?

Warrior Princess or King?

Tue, 23 Feb 2010 12:17:00 +0000

This week Dirk and I are focused on material for sharing at an upcoming marriage seminar. This is a previous post from March, 2008. Share your thoughts?

The message series at right now is “Warrior”. If you didn’t get a chance to see it last weekend, it’s a “must-see”. Watch it here.

In the message, Craig Groschel says that the Church has emasculated our men, our warriors. I totally agree, but I think we women have had a lot to do with that. Even emasculating our own husbands.
Think about it:

We train them to put the seat DOWN after they use the toilet.

We purchase hair removal products, “encourage” them to pluck their eyebrows, and talk about the “disgusting rugs” on their backs.

We invite them into our frilly, pink, lacy bedrooms (or living rooms—hey! I’ve seen some!)

We relegate “their stuff” (hunting trophies, pictures of the guys, military things) into the garage, their bathroom, the closet.

We “encourage” them to speak nicely (translated: “act like me, a mommy”) to our children, even when they have misbehaved. “Honey, you’ll hurt their little feelings”.
I don’t know about you, but if the tables were turned, and my guy expected me to be like him….well,… makes you think.

Maybe some of us shouldn’t wonder why when he:

Shuts down
Quits trying
Doesn’t want to be at home
Won’t go to church with us

Craig encouraged us girls to be Warrior Princesses, to stand by our Warriors . I’m thinkin’ there are a lot of us that just want to be The Princess, or maybe The King.

Ways to Fight Fair

Mon, 22 Feb 2010 08:27:00 +0000

Dirk and I have been invited to participate in a break-out session as part of a marriage conference next weekend.  The subject we were requested to share about:


I'll be sharing some thoughts this week from our preparation.

Our relational discussions really don't have to end up in a blow-out fight if we have some guidelines and boundaries in place.  Then we can be in control of the argument, rather than the argument controlling us.

Here is a hand-out we are working on.


Believe your mate has your best interest at heart

Listen. Ask yourself, "Is there any truth to this?"

See the discussion as an opportunity for understanding rather than for winning.

Remove sarcasm, cynicism, and anger from your words and tone.

Stay on topic.

See the issue as "our" issue, not "his" or "her" issue

Keep the discussion only between you and your mate

Take responsibility for yourself and your actions

Recognize your limits. If things are heating up, agree to a time-out.

Finish the discussion. Don't leave it open-ended.



See your mate as the adversary

Belittle, insult, call names or use abusive language

Label or compare ("You are so ________" or You are just like your _________")

Try to have the last word

Shut down and use the silent treatment

Put up defenses and retaliate verbally

Tear down the other's character and personality. Keep it about behavior.

Use the D word (divorce)

Threaten, yell, scream, slam doors or throw, hit or break things

Walk away or leave the house (except for an agreed upon time-out)

Bring up the past or former unresolved discussions

Blame or make accusations

Generalize - "You always", "You never", "Can't you just...?", "You are so..."

Make assumptions about what you think your mate is saying. Ask direct questions.


What do you think?  Any additions or suggestions?

Can these guidelines help to control the argument rather than it controlling us?

The Word

Sun, 14 Feb 2010 21:24:00 +0000

It has the power to save our souls. James 1:21

It is our life. Deuteronomy 32:47 ; Psalm 119:37 ; Proverbs 4:4

It is Truth we can trust. Psalm 33:3 ; John 17:17

It keeps us from sin. Psalm 119:11

It revives and encourages us. Psalm 119:25 ; Psalm 119:28

It is eternal. Psalm 119:89 ; Isaiah 40:8; Isaiah 59:21 ; Matthew 24:35

It is our guide. Psalm 119:105

It is a source of hope. Psalm 119:74 ; Psalm 119:81 ; Psalm 119:114

His Word is so much more than this!  What is it to you?

Double Nickels

Wed, 10 Feb 2010 08:37:00 +0000

(image) Yep.  Today is my birthday, and I’m now double-nickels (as my husband, Dirk says).

I’ve been around a pretty long while.

Since before

-Barbie dolls and hula hoops

-permanent press fabrics

 -cassette and 8-track tapes (know what those are??)

-remote controls and portable phones

-home computers and hand-held calculators

-power steering & brakes

-Alaska and Hawaii were not even states

The year I was born

-automobiles were required to install seatbelts

-the first oral contraceptive was invented

-the first cans of Coke came out (they were in glass bottles only, before)

-the first McDonald’s and Disneyland was opened

-gasoline was .23 a gallon

“In God We Trust” was added to all US paper currency

You can laugh about all that now, but you’ll be thanking me when I can save you 10% at Ross on Tuesdays! Just saying.

Filled or Flowing?

Tue, 09 Feb 2010 11:32:00 +0000


A lot of people talk about serving and giving to others “out of the overflow”,  speaking of the overflow of God’s presence and love.

I’ve been thinking about this for some time now.

I’m not sure we really serve or love from an overflow.

That idea conveys that we hang on to something, that we get “filled up” and that we can’t give if we’re not filled.

Maybe it’s only a matter of semantics, but I’m gaining a different perspective.

What if we think of ourselves as a conduit?  A pipe.  Open-ended.  A conduit allows things to flow through from the a source.  It never fills up… can’t overflow.

And, what if we see ourselves as connected to The open-ended pipe with an everlasting supply of  Living Water flowing from our hearts and lives to those around us?

 Then we'll never be  filled up.  If we are, we’re hanging on to something that doesn’t even belong to us.

Love always gives, always serves.  It isn’t selfish enough to stay inside, because….well, then, it isn’t truly love.

John 7:37-38-- Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.’” NLT

What do you think? Does that idea give you a different perspective?   Filled or flowing?

The Riddle - Answer Revealed!

Tue, 02 Feb 2010 12:38:00 +0000

Belinda (a long time friend of ours)  guessed right!  The answer to “The Riddle” is simply (drumroll, please)...……opening my car door for me.  Always!

Here’s the funny thing.  Dirk never guessed what the answer was until late last night!  He guessed everything from his singing, patting me on the rear, (seriously?  That attests to his character?)  to telling me he loves me.

My girls (most of them) knew right away.  But, my sons had a harder time guessing.

Which confirmed my original thought:

A lot of men don’t realize that it’s the little things that mean the most to us women.  And often, we forget to tell you. 

Sure, receiving gifts and flowers is always really nice gesture from our husbands.  But nothing replaces the everyday things.  Like when Dirk always puts himself between me and the traffic if we are walking near a street.  Or when he empties the dishwasher, or makes the bed.  Or makes sure there’s gas in my car. 

I’m just saying, the best gifts most husbands can give their wives are FREE!

Do you wives agree?  What are some of the “free” gifts your husbands give to you?

A Riddle

Sun, 31 Jan 2010 21:43:00 +0000

A little riddle for you today. If you really know us, you know the answer for sure. Let's have a little fun and see if we get any guesses. If you do know, just say "I know!"

He’s done it ever since I first knew him, yet it’s never been an annoyance to me.
I’ve never tired of it, even once.
It still makes me smile, if not outwardly, deeply inside.
Yet, I never expect it.
It doesn’t matter if it’s day or night, sunny or pouring.
I never wonder if he’ll forget…he doesn’t.
It’s such a part of who he is. And this action spoke volumes to me of his character, even when we were just teens.
Though it’s nothing deeply spiritual, this one gesture makes me feel so loved and cared for. And proud to be his wife.

Have any guesses?

Dearest Husband

Mon, 25 Jan 2010 08:59:00 +0000

Anna also wrote letters to her future husband.  Since she loves to write, I wasn't surprised  that she had written several letters over the years.  She recently shared a book of letters with me.  The first one she saved is from 2003.  She was 15.  Several  more were written in her book through 2005. 

The first thing I noted was the heading.  Anna wrote her letters to "Dearest Husband".  Being the passionate, romantic she was (and is, still), her many letters were full of hopes of the future, the things she was currently learning and even books she was reading.


2003 "It's hard to write you and not get excited about someday meeting you face to face.  I know someday you'll read these letters and I just pray that God is preparing you just as He is preparing me. "

2004"....I just have to be careful I'm not getting too anxious for you, but remember to just pray for your safety and purity..."

2005. "In Proverbs 31:12 it says that the wife brings good, not harm all the days of her life.  This means that even before I meet you, I should be honoring you with my emotions and most definately my thougths.  I'm  also learing about the sacrifices and unconditional love of Jesus, and how someday I will be able to pour that love out into our marriage. I pray for you, love.  I  pray patience and strength for your fierce heart."

God already knew.

While Anna was dreaming and writing to her Dearest Husband, he (Cody Light),  was entering the Marine Corps in 2003.  In 2004, when she often mentioned praying for his safety, he was in Iraq.  He was there until May, 2005, while she was praying for his patience and strength.

He came back to Oklahoma City in December, 2008 and visited Lifechurch, Northwest Campus, where Anna is on staff.

2005 "How I think of the day we will meet.  Will I know it is you?  Have I already met you, even now as I write you this letter?

No. She didn't know.   In fact, she called him Caleb for several weeks!

Anna and Cody were married on August, 7, 2009.

Isaiah 64:4  For since the world began,
      no ear has heard,
   and no eye has seen a God like you,
      who works for those who wait for him!

Did you write letters to your husband-to-be?  Share your story.

Dear Future Husband (Part 2)

Thu, 14 Jan 2010 18:51:00 +0000

Letter from our youngest daughter, Katie….quite the prophetess!


Written by Katie Meadows Mansour, April 29, 2002.  13 years old

Hey future husband!

I’m writing you because, well, because I’m so excited about getting married and I can hardly wait to start a life and family of my own with you.  I know you must know that God has to be the cornerstone of our marriage, because if you didn’t I wouldn’t have allowed myself to marry you.  What I mean by that is God has to be in everything that we do—decisions, goals, most importantly our relationship.

Right now I am 13, almost 14.  My wishes/fantasies are to get married in about six years on July 12 (my Grandpa, Grandma and Mom and Dad’s weddings were on July 12).  That is two days before my 20th bd.  I will almost be done with college, getting registered for nursing.  I really want to just be a mom, but until we are set financially, my career will be nursing……(she goes on to tell the number of children, boys and girls, complete with names and name meanings)

….I know my wishes and fantasies will change and I’m glad because I want you to have every part and every say that you desire.  I know God has set you apart for me and I can’t wait to meet you!

Your future wife,

Katie Sara Meadows

Eph. 5:22-24

Eph 5:33



Katie met Alexander when she was still young, 15, and actually did marry him on July 12, 2007, in the very same church as her parents' and grandparents' wedding, even though it was a Thursday evening wedding!  She was two days shy of turning 19.

This May she graduates from University of Central Oklahoma with her degree in nursing.

Finding this letter blessed me so much.  The thoughts and desires expressed on paper set a direction for Katie and she stayed with it. It’s hard for me to believe anything other than that the Hand of God was directing her hand, as well as her heart. Alexander’s desires match Katie’s desires, and God is the cornerstone of their marriage.

My hope and prayer for you is that you will be encouraged that God has a plan for you, and for your children. Keep pouring His truths into them. Someday, when you see them grow up and live it out…..well, that’s just an overwhelming blessing!!

Next, I’ll share some of Anna’s thoughts and dreams from her letters to her future husband.


Dear Future Husband (Part One)

Mon, 11 Jan 2010 21:57:00 +0000

I've been cleaning out some old stuff and discovered a small gold mine of Katie and Anna's old spiral notebooks. The notebooks we used for their schoolwork.

One of the prized writings I found was a letter Katie wrote to her future husband.....when she was only 13 years old!

I remember giving Anna and Katie the assignment. I don't remember if I offered any suggestions as to content, but I do know the things they wrote must have helped in giving them direction for the qualities and character they were looking for in a young man. They chose well!

Anna recently shared with me that she saved the letters written to her future husband and presented them in a book to her to-be husband, Cody Light, the week they were to be married, August 7, 2009. Wow! Wish I had done something like that!

So, if you're single, consider doing something similar for your future husband. And really, I guess it's never too late to start writing letters to our husbands. Think I'll give it a start!

I'll post Katie's letter to her future husband next blog. She's quite the prophetess. Come back and see what her 13 yo heart knew even before she married Alexander. Maybe Anna will share some of hers as well.


Santa Baby

Sun, 03 Jan 2010 22:20:00 +0000

Logan Tyler Simms

born October 28, 2009

Our 3rd grandson, our 7th grand!!

Those cheeks are kissable!!

(image) He makes a great addition to our crew, don't you think?

'Twas a Snowy Night

Sat, 02 Jan 2010 12:08:00 +0000

“White Out ’09,” “The Blizzard of 2009,” “Historical Snowfall,” these were the headlines our greedy news outlets used describing December 24, 2009. If anything happened that day or night outside of Oklahoma we missed it. Wall–to-wall coverage of this disputable snowfall led our government officials and weathermen to tell us to stay home. A blizzard on Christmas Eve had created the perfect storm. We all have our stories of that night, but my story is not about the weather. It’s about courage, determination, togetherness and family. Should we have gotten out? Probably not.Stay home on Christmas Eve? No way! We, as a family, had a get together and when my sister-in-law puts on Christmas, it is not to be missed. However, we had a 79 year old and two 84 year olds to get there. How? My brother-in-law selflessly trekked out to collect my mother-in-law and her husband. Robin and I picked up my dad and couldn’t have had an easier time driving in our all-wheel-drive Honda Pilot (dubbed “the Billy Goat” after this storm). What I sensed in our older family members was the same in our younger members: they wanted to come together. The enjoyment of each other’s company and the genuine fun we have together caused us to overlook the dangers of the weather outside..My son-in-law and his two older boys started out in his jeep (which looks more like a lunar rover than an earth vehicle.) With 30-inch tires and an 8-inch lift he could go anywhere. But, there was no room for the presents and my oldest daughter and their new baby. Half-way through our trip we got a call from her that she needed a ride. After dropping off my car load, my youngest son and I went back for her. Living just two football fields away from us, going back to get her through the 40,50 and 60 mile an hour winds with the 3 to 6 foot drifts and the snow coming down was not something you would normally want to do. But for some reason I didn’t mind, because what happened on this night was far stronger than words can express. For me, it was a pleasure beyond the normal everyday experience.The desire to want to come together that night caused us to do things that we normally wouldn’t do. It caused us to get out of our comfort, and yes even our common sense security zones. My oldest son, his wife and two daughters had no problem arriving in our heavier- than-a-boulder, four-wheel-drive dually welding truck, but he was ready to help my second oldest daughter, her husband and two daughters if they had gotten stuck. Her family had to maneuver through the streets of Edmond with all the other crazies that were out and go around all the cars that were strewn and abandoned but they made it. Heck, my youngest daughter and her husband walked to our party, much to our and her own surprise! She hates the cold but her husband is adventurous. Nothing he does should surprise her.The last ones to arrive were our newest newly-weds. They weren’t late because of being newly-wed but because of traffic. What normally would have been a thirty minute drive turned into a three hour wait in a long line of traffic. But, with determination and patience they made it.I purposely wanted to observe this year more than be in the big middle of all that was going on and was really blessed by doing so. I wondered why the 28 of us couldn’t have waited a couple of days to have our get together to celebrate Jesus’ birth, but as our second granddaughter, age 8, read the Christmas story to us, I thought this is what family is all about : a desire to want to come and share in each other’s liv[...]

The Rest of the Story

Thu, 03 Dec 2009 08:45:00 +0000

Maybe you read this about our dining room furniture makeover.  No?  Go ahead.  I'll wait.

OK - now you know about the top being refinished, and the parts you can see being repainted.

What I didn't tell you is a little secret I discovered underneath the table top.

Being that this is written in cursive, I figure Katie must have been about 8 years old when she signed our table.  Certainly old enough to know better.

And here's what I find interesting about this recent discovery.  What once would have caused me to be upset, wonder where I had gone wrong in teaching her, or trying to figure out the best strategy for discipline now only brings a smile to my face.

Why?  Katie is grown now.  She is 21.


She is the wife of Alexander, working on their 3rd year of marriage.  She is working full time at McBride Clinic,  is paying her own way through nursing school and will graduate this May with her RN degree .  She is a loving sister, a fun Aunt Kate-Kate, and a wonderful daughter. She's hardworking, extremely talented and our go-to for medical questions.

So moms and dads.  When you discover those signatures and masterpieces in your closets, cabinets, window sills, etc., just know that some day it won't bother you so much. Your little artists will have grown into amazing adults!

Besides, I'm sure Katie knows by now not to write on the furniture. Wait... maybe I need to have Alexander check underneath their table!

Dining Furniture Makeover

Sun, 29 Nov 2009 19:02:00 +0000

Several years ago, when  honey colored oak when VERY stylish, (of course) we purchased a larger dining table for our ever-growing family.

Now, since honey colored oak is no longer very stylish, and at the suggestion of my stylin' daughter, Ali, I decided to make a change.  And we are all very glad!

First, I started with the bar stools.   A nice improvement, don't you think?


I lightly hand sanded the legs, and spray painted with a black satin finish.  No drips!  The top I sanded with a power orbital, removing the finish.  I used dark walnut Min-Wax Wood Finish for the top, and finished with a couple coats of clear satin water-based polyurethane.

Then, I really got busy!

(image) I sanded, and sanded and sanded and....well, you get it.  It took a LOT of sanding for the top.

Looks better, right?


Again, I removed the finish and stained with the dark walnut, applying several coats of polyurethane to protect the top.  I lightly sanded the legs and this time used a brush and satin finish black latex to paint the bottom part of the table the the four chairs.

So, for more than a week's worth of work, dinner in the living room, a mess in the house, and about $30 of materials, we have a new-t0-us table and chairs.  I think Dave Ramsey would approve.  So does Ali!

Number 23!!

Sat, 28 Nov 2009 07:46:00 +0000

We have GREAT news!!  We are adding ManyMeadows, Number 23, and GRAND number 8 to our family in July!


Andrew and Abbi shared the news with her parents yesterday in Nebraska.  We've known for a short while and have been BUSTIN' to share this happy news with everyone!!

Read more of their story here.

We're so very excited for them....and for us!!

: )

Dread or Great Expectations?

Wed, 25 Nov 2009 07:05:00 +0000

So you're headed to your in-laws tomorrow.  Anxiety is already building, causing spats with your spouse and conflicts with your kids.  You're already dreading the prying questions your Aunt will ask, the tension and comparisons with your siblings, the unresolved issues with your dad.  Or things even worse.

Thanksgiving?  Ha!  It will be more like "Terrible Taunting Turkey Day".  A day you can't wait to be over...and then, there will be Christmas to think about and all those issues to be  revisited again!

But get this!

God's word tells us in Ephesians 3:20

God can do anything, you know—far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! (The Message)


through his mighty power at work within us (New Living Testament)

Is it possible  in pressing circumstances that we could be setting limits on the power of God working in our behalf ?  Might this scripture indicate that He will do just as much for us as we will allow him to do in us?

So why dread the day?

Instead, allow His Spirit to have free reign in your heart, and go to your extended family gathering with a great expectation! Watch for His Divine encounter.   According to His power within us, He can  do more than we can even think or guess or imagine!!

Now, that's a great and freeing thought!!

Name Your Dish

Tue, 24 Nov 2009 07:39:00 +0000

What is your favorite, must-have-at-Thanksgiving dinner dish?


At the Meadows Thanksgiving event, the most asked for side to Dirk's famous smoked turkey, is loaded mashed potatoes, followed by Erin's to-die-for stuffing, and Katie's new asked-for-often recipe, cheesecake squares (minus the nuts).     This year we get to sample Abbi's grandmother's corn casserole.   Can't wait!

So?  Tell us.  What is your favorite Thanksgiving food or side-dish?

Number 19

Mon, 23 Nov 2009 08:28:00 +0000

We gained a daughter-in-love on May 29 this year.  Abbi is now a Meadows, bringing the ManyMeadows' number to 19!

We joke that I hand-picked her for my oldest son, Andrew....and maybe it's not really a joke.  I knew her before he did!


She's an artist...he's a cowboy. She took him to his first art show, he took her to her first rodeo.   She loves New York, he loves home and being outdoors.

And they deeply love each other.


She's a great  5th daughter(image) and a wonderful 2nd mom to Andrew's daughters, Sierra and Mesa.


Check out her blog, and her creations.

She's quite a girl and we're so proud to have her in our family!

(We now have more members in our family!  I'll introduce you to them soon.)