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From One Single Mom to Another <3

I am a single mom of two boys. I've been on my own for nearly three years now. I sure have been in some rough spots where I needed a miracle to climb out of. Let me say this: If there is anything I've learned, it is that God provides and he is faithful.

In April of this year, I was a full time student at a local college. I was taking six classes and fifteen units a semester. I wanted to be successful and I had a plan of my own. When I surrendered my life to God completely and let him take control, it was shortly after that God called me to be a stay at home mom.

It took me a month to accept that it was what God wanted me to do. I had just gotten accepted to my dream school! I was going to an University to finish my bachelor's degree in teaching! But as time progressed, my heart grew and so did my realization when I knew my children were my dream, not my career.

Financially, it would be impossible! The kids' child support was cut down in half! My mother moved out and so did her paycheck. Who ever heard of a stay at home single mom? Not me! I chuckled and said, "God, this is your will and I need you to provide a way."

And God is faithful. When he wants his will done, he WILL provide a way! God promises that his children will never beg.

"I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread."Psalms 37:25

Just don't ask me how I'm making it every month! I can't tell you that! I've done the budget over and over several times and it just made me nauseous. All I can say is that we have a wonderful home and plenty of food in the fridge! Sometimes I do get asked, and I tell others that I get by in faith alone. I have no husband to support me and my kids, but God has taken over and he has become our provider. I've learned to lean on him entirely.

"Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things." Matthew 6:31-32

Here are some TIPS to make it when it gets rough

1. Tithe no matter what, even if you won't have enough left for yourself. God is faithful and will supply all your needs. He will reward your faith in him. Things have GREATLY improved for us ever since I faithfully started tithing! I even found money in odd places constantly, and God blessed everything around me.

2. Sit down and write a list of all your bills. Do you really need that many bills? Eliminate the unneccessary bills. Research for alternate, cheaper options for the bills you need to keep. I only have two bills and that's PG&E and Netflix!

3. When you shop, do the math. We don't always need brand name products, and the generic ones are good and cheaper! I check the boxes for their weight and divide it into the price to see if I am getting my value. (example: 10lb chicken bag for 10.00 would be one dollar a pound, compared to 5lb chicken bag for 3.00. We can get two 5lb chicken bags for 6.00 instead of the 10lb for 10.00)(watch for that)

4. Resturants. I know Americans love to eat out. I am guilty as charged. We should cut down on going out, and if you're at a fast food place, then check out their dollar menus.

5. Apply for WIC, Welfare food stamps, Social Security and there are many programs that can help put food on your table for your kids. A lot of people may look down on government assistance, but single moms usually don't have a choice.

Being a stay at home mom is worth it. It amazes me how many people criticize when a woman decides to raise her children at home. I deal with that too, a lot. But just know this, you are doing what is best for your children. There's also LOT to do too when it comes to training, disciplining, bonding with our children and keeping the home. Single moms don't lay around on the couch, soaking up the sun. It's a heavy job, and we just dont get paid for it. But, when we raise amazing kids, that would be the sweet reward for all of our hard work. That's the true meaning of success.

And never forget, God is always with you.

It Is Well With My Soul.

I heard this story today in my New Horizon's class this morning. It was so beautiful that I couldn't wait to come home, find it online and share it with you guys! It is a story that I think, shows remarkable faith and trust in God. As Christians, we live above the circumstances. We need to remember to trust in God during whatever trials we may face and to know that God is in control. That thought alone gives my soul rest and comfort.

In 1873 the Spafford family planned a trip to England. Mr. Spafford was delayed by business, and so sent Mrs. Spafford and the four girls on ahead. Their ship sunk off of Newfoundland. Mrs. Spafford was one of only 47 survivors. All four of his daughters had drowned. Mr. Spafford received a horrific telegram from his wife: "saved alone". He boarded the next available ship. When Mr. and Mrs. Spafford met up with Dwight Moody in England, Mr. Spafford simply said, "It is well. The will of God be done."

But when his ship had passed through the same place in the river where his daughters had drowned just a few hours before, he wrote this beautiful song: "It is Well With My Soul."

One For the Road!

I came up with a song to sing while I'm driving. I love to sing in the car. It's a good thing that the windows are soundproof though, 'cause I wouldn't want to make everybody else deaf too!

What a great God I serve
He's more than I deserve
He supplies all my needs
And fulfills all my wants
What a great God I serve!

drive morning Pictures, Images and Photos

Update @;-->----

Hi Everyone! I have been posting so much about PROP 8 that I forgot to write about the other stuff that just happend in my life as well. So much has happend this month!

We moved out of our apartment for safety reasons and I just didn't want my kids in the middle of a drug infested neighborhood. I also didn't want a white masked gang banging on our door in the middle of the night like they have been doing (scary!). So, we found a home! And the best part of it is that it's a HOME! I absolutely, positively, and all the 'elys' love this place! It's so clean, SAFE, quiet, and just beautiful! I've been working hard at unpacking and I have very little boxes left! I just have to do this....... *(sQuEals)*

Thank you Lord. Just for the record, God DOES take good care of his children :)

Oh! My mom finally got her OWN place too! She was led to this gorgeous Victorian house that was renting out rooms. We have lived together for 2 1/2 years for financial reasons and emotional support during the hardest times of our lives. Now she can enjoy her own place!

Ok, what else? Landon has been doing TERRIFIC at school and can write the alphabet! I am very proud of him! Brady is also signing so fast and he keeps picking up more signs! They are growing like weeeeeds, but CUTE weeds! Landon just had a birthday and he is FOUR years old! My goodness!!!

And as some of you may know.. I've been struggling with a restaurant addiction. I grew up in restaurants while everybody's mom cooked at home. My sister said that it's a feeling of being at home when we are at restaurants and I guess that's true. When I saw Landon start demanding to go to restaurants, I knew I didn't want to pass that down to my children.

*Sigh*, so I decided to cut it DOWN! Instead of uh.. every single day.. we'll only go out on Sundays after church. Once a week is fine for now. I've been cooking ever since I moved in this new home. In a way, it's a new beginning for many things for me. Landon looked at me the other night and said, "mom, I like your cooking. We don't need to go to restaurants." I just laughed. And I am actually enjoying cooking!! Is the sky falling? lol.

Ok, my rambling is all done. Thanks for listening! May your Autumn be glorious!

Love, Charlene

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My Heart's Cry.

I have been feeling this heaviness on my soul as a feeling of dread. The air is different. It is a feeling that I cannot shake off and it lingers in my soul. I don't know if you guys can sense it too, but a few have told me that they know what I mean. Something is coming.

When I walk, when I drive, when I sleep, all I can think about are those words..

"We need a savior."

I got my baptism picture from church recently. I knew I needed a Savior.

BRING ON THE RAIN!! @;-->-----


Halloween Video!

My mom found this one and it's worthy to share! It's a short one too and won't take up too much of your time!

I was walking through the store today and noticed their Halloween display. It was just horrendous and evil! How can anyone not notice how this is directly from the devil himself and Christian should have NO part of this?

"Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!" Isaiah 5:20

I've Been Tagged*

I've been tagged by the lovely lady, Jess! Check out her beautiful blog here at From the Pages of My Heart!

1. I love wearing & making jewelries.
2. Writing is a passion of mine.
3. I am absolutely terrified of octopusses and squids!!
4. I LOVE spicy foods! MM!
5. Music is a blur to me but God has given me the ability to hear the beat so I can dance, and the words so I can perform it in sign language for his glory.
6. I have never liked tomatoes! :P~

Here are the rules when it comes to being tagged:

The Rules:
Link to the person who tagged you.
Post the rules on your blog.
Write six random things about yourself.
Tag six people at the end of your post.
Let each person know he or she has been tagged.
Let the tagger know when your entry is up.

I don't know very many bloggers, oh hmM!! I will tag...

1. Martha at MerelyMom
2. Monica at ChicBoutique
3. Cassie at Content of Praise
4. Miss Amanda at the Daily Planet

And I don't know 2 more! lol.

And I found this powerful video from SuperAngel's blog! I wanted to share it with you all as well!! Please take the time to read this! It's worth the few minutes to give your attention.

Sunday, October 5th♥

I was baptized this morning! It felt very cleansing and refreshing inside and out! I am honored to be baptized by my wonderful pastor. My mom, my friends and my little boy were there to watch me be baptized. I prayed that this would be my step into a new beginning with God. The old me passed away and the life that I led according to my own desires have passed away. I have emerged from the water all new and given the Lord my heart and soul. My life is his to control. There will be no turning back anymore. Like Bruce Frye, the country singer that came to our church several times sings, "The Old Man is Dead."

"Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new." 2 Corinthians 5:17

And I long to be a handmaiden of the Lord.

"And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her." Luke 1:38

My Story.

When I was ten years old, I went to a small baptist. At that time, I felt a longing to know the truth and I sought after God for the answer. The pastor's wife asked me if I wanted to be saved and I quickly said yes. She brought me into baptismal right away. I was baptized at 10 years old.

I went to a Christian camp a month after that. I felt an urgency in my heart that I still needed the truth. Something was MISSING. I could feel it and it made me so restless. I asked the chapel minister. I asked the people from church. I asked and no one had an answer for me. They said, "do you believe in God?" I said yes, but is that it? Is that all? There just had to be more because the devil believes in God too.

At the end of the week, I was walking to the campfire at night with the youth group. I lingered behind the group and just stared at the stars. There were tall trees swaying in the night sky and the stars were just vividly shining. I felt this great peace and awe. At that moment, it was like God looked right at me. The answer came right from the sky and fell blazenly in my heart.

All of a sudden, everything made sense. It was a click, it made sense. While no one could answer me, God answered. I grabbed my missionary friend and started rambling. I don't remember what I said, but I remembered my knees shaking. I felt this awe, this glory, this beauty enter me and it felt cleansing and thrilling. I was only ten, so I called it 'magic bubbles.'

I knew the answer. It was to make a conscious decision; a deliberate choice to accept Jesus Christ as my Savior. I had to give Jesus permission to save me because I was a sinner and was on my way to hell. He was waiting all along and was by my side from the beginning. All those times, I knew I was never alone.

I grew up and I was a very good girl. I loved God and worshipped him. When I turned eighteen, I was so fascinated with the world. I was caught up in getting attention, wanting to go crazy with my freedom and I had left the church. I read devotionals but I started getting weaker in my faith. I was too caught up with the world. I met my ex husband and fell in love fast! He was not saved or a Christian at that time and I didn't care. I wanted him and I wasn't going to listen to anyone. I did anything to make him happy, and I compromised myself and I broke my vow of purity to God. I felt so ashamed to face him and I couldn't bring myself to pray to God for a whole year.

My life went downhill after that. I had marriage problems. We went to the wrong crowd and I tried drinking to impress my ex husband. I hated it the entire time and I knew I was far from God. Everything literally fell apart because I had left God. I got a divorce and it was so heartbreaking and devastating. I had to drag myself off the floor and I just ran to God. For a long time, I felt like I didn't deserve God at all but I kept desperately clinging to him. God spared me from so much pain and suffering during the worst time of my life.

He led me to my church and my life has changed since then. Dramatically. Literally. Forever. I grew so much in this church and I grew closer to God. My life changed when I handed it over to God completely. I can't begin to describe what this journey has been like. All I know is that God has changed me forever and given me a whole new life. I never want to go back. I want to keep going forward and grow closer to God everyday until I die.

I need an official point even though God has already been pulling me into a new direction. My road keeps turning towards him. I want to make it official. I want a new beginning. I want to take that step where there is no turning back anymore. I want to rededicate my life to God and do it right this time. I am getting baptized again :)

Looking back, in spite of it all, the heartbreak, the devastation, the going astray.. I can find a reason to be thankful. I got to experience God's grace and mercy to the fullest. There is nothing like it in all the world.

Starting over. My God is the God of second chances.

In Awe of the Lord♥

I am just so thrilled and excited because God has answered my prayer! I will explain what happend.

I made a decision not to celebrate Halloween after hearing my pastor in Illinois preach against Halloween. Landon was not even a month old at that time. At first, it was a struggle for me to accept this change because I was already so used to it growing up. I even considered Halloween to be one of my favorite holidays. I loved being scared while I was growing up. But after I heard the truth, I couldn't consciously go back to my habit of ever celebrating Halloween again. Every year, my convictions grew stronger and I can finally put my foot down and say that I am against Halloween.

I was very concerned and worried about my boys this year because they were going to be with their father on Halloween weekend. He does celebrate Halloween even though we both originally decided against it. I came before the Lord and prayed from my heart for God to prevent my sons from celebrating Halloween. I didn't want them to take any part in this satanic holiday. This was beyond my power and I gave it to the Lord. I pleaded with him and then I just believed he would take care of this.

And he did. :)

The day after I prayed, my ex husband came unexpectedly to my door. He showed me his work schedule and he asked if we could change the weekends to the next instead. That would mean the boys would be with ME during halloween weekend! I couldn't believe it! I felt my heart light up and I am just in awe of the power of the Lord. God STILL answers prayers and he is STILL in the miracle business!! Praise him!!

And I knew for certain that the Lord had answered this prayer specifically because he supports my decision not to allow my family to celebrate halloween. God answers prayers that are inside his will. So, I know for certain that God does not want his people to partake of the devil's holiday.

I wrote an article about the truth behind halloween and it is called "Hell-oween." It will be at AgMinistries very soon so keep an eye out!


"And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him." 1 John 5:14-15

(God seeks after prayers that are sought after his will, so we need to pray for the right things. When we pray, we need to believe with all of our hearts that the Lord has heard us, because he will answer our prayers. Remember, God is faithful.)

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