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Welcome to the CMWF Blog! We hope you'll find some encouragement and comfort here through stories of military life and truth from God's Word.


On New Year's Resolutions
On New Year's Resolutions


by Brandis Trionfo


Every year, I make a list of a gazillion resolutions that I swear I'm going to follow through on. I'm going to lose a ton of weight, save money, organize my house, etc.


It takes about a week before, well, life takes over.


This year I was challenged by the leader of my community group to come up with one word. Just ONE word for the entire year for us to focus on.


How hard can it be to choose one word? Harder than I expected. I consulted my Bible, my best friend, and tried to come up with something clever. I kept coming back to the word intentional. It's not a fancy word and I'm not sure it's even the right word, but I can't stop thinking about it.

  
My best friend messaged me on New Year's Day and asked me about my resolutions. I told her rather than come up with a list of things I'd never accomplish, my goal was to be more intentional at diving into God's Word. I wanted to yell less and love more with my kiddos. And in general, I wanted to be more joyful in all I do.

 
Intentional is defined as "done on purpose, deliberate." I want to DO life ON PURPOSE. I want to dive into the Word of God. I want to giggle and tickle and give my kids the mom they deserve rather than the tired, stressed one they're so used to. I want to live life for God's purpose, not mine. 


Proverbs 19:21 says, "You can make many plans, but the Lord's purpose will prevail."


So my goal is to be intentional in all I do. I want to speak life into people I meet, I want to bring joy to myself and my children by living through God's Word, and ultimately I want to have a year that is lived FOR the Lord.

 
Tell me, friends, what's one word that you can use this year to bring yourself closer to God?


Questions for Reflection:

*What is one word you can use to motivate yourself for the new year?

*How can you be more intentional at being in God's Word?


Happy New Year, friends. I hope this year is wonderful for you and I hope at the end I can bring the good news of how intentional I was this year. :)




Brandis is a former Sailor turned Air Force wife, a stay at home mom to 3 kids, and a lover of rustic country decor. She misses the Navy almost daily but is so very thankful for the time she gets with her family, dogs, & friends living near the beach.


Finding Moments of Reflection
Finding Moments of Reflection


by Chantal Graupmann




Sometimes I wonder about Mary, the mother of Jesus. Who was she? How did she worship, parent, love? What thoughts went through her mind during key events of her life? I often wonder about Mary during this time of year. She did, after all, give birth to our Savior, the whole reason behind the celebration of Christmas.

As I started reading through the birth of Jesus in my Bible, a verse caught my attention, “But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart” Luke 2:19. I am still in awe when I read that verse. 

Can you picture this? Strangers are coming from afar to see and prophesy over baby Jesus. Mary is a new mother. Rather than reacting with the fierceness of a mother, she simply listens and ponders. How many of us would react the way Mary did? I know I would not. I would be asking questions, and probably be trying to shield my new baby from this crazy world! 

We can’t know exactly what Mary knew about her son, but I think I am safe in saying she had no idea the impact this little baby’s birth made on the world.

I continued to think on this verse and I wondered, as we get ready to celebrate Christmas, do we do as Mary did? Do we treasure and ponder the birth of our Savior? Most often we do not. We whiz through the many events leading up to Christmas without a moment of true, deep reflection on Christ’s birth and what it meant. 

As I strive to live for Christ, this realization got me thinking how this holiday season should be different for my family. Maybe some activities need to be let go or new ones need to be included. The process of purposefully pondering Christ in our holiday season will likely never be complete, but one thing I know I can always come back to as we add or subtract from our holiday to-do list is this: treasure is not found everywhere, it is carefully kept and often concealed.

 

Prayer:

Thank you, Lord, for your grand plan and the birth of your son. We confess that we often neglect to ponder the true meaning of the season. As we celebrate Jesus’ birth, help us to treasure and ponder the events that have taken place for us. Strengthen us to be open to any convictions the Holy Spirit may place on our hearts regarding this busy season, and help us to seek Christ in a new way. 





Chantal Graupmann is an Air Force wife and mother to two children. She is striving to serve women in the midst of motherhood and military life, and is passionate about building community. She loves finding time for DIY projects, experimental cooking, and travel.


Taking Time to Focus on Christ
Taking Time to Focus on Christ


by Brandis Trionfo



My 4-year-old has recently started singing "Away in a Manger" around the house. I'm fairly certain it's because his preschool is starting to rehearse for their Christmas program. It's so precious to hear and I love how my kids learn about Christ at school.


The song touches me. In modern times, none of us can fathom what it must have been like for Mary and Joseph in that space. Giving birth on hay? Where were the epidurals and sterile blankets? What a miracle to know that Christ did that FOR US.


In these times, it can be so difficult to find even a moment to be still. To step away from our iPhones and technology and television. To find just a moment to breathe. To focus on our maker.

 
During Christmas, especially if you have little ones, at least for most of us, it's all about Santa. What he's going to bring.

 
Last year (thanks to Pinterest--there goes that technology again!) I learned A LOT about biblical Christmas themes. Things like how candy canes are shaped the way they are after the staffs of the shepherds who visited Christ. I've taken these little nuggets of knowledge and made it so I speak them to my kids AS we're celebrating the other stuff. I found a pin about 25 verses to read up until Christmas, to prepare yourself and your family to celebrate Him. This list could go on, but you get the idea.


I find that the little things like that will help us to slow down and focus on what Christmas is REALLY about. It's so hard to wrap our heads around the fact that Christ came for us, knowing already what would happen to him, so that we could be set free.


Isaiah 9:6 (NLT)- "For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. The government will rest on his shoulders. And he will be called: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."


Just think about that for a moment. The words that pop out: Wonderful. Mighty. Everlasting. Peace.


In these times, it's good to have that on your side. Take a moment this holiday season to meditate on the word of our Father. Take a moment to focus on Him and how He is preparing your way. Through the season and the snow and the gifts and the hot chocolate, remember Him. He came so that we might have LIFE. And live it to the FULL.


Enjoy your Christmas. Happy Birthday, Jesus!

 

Prayer:

Lord, I thank you for this season. I thank you that we're able to take a day to celebrate you. I thank you for your grace in knowing that we should be celebrating you every day but sometimes we fall short. I pray Lord that during this time we're able to focus on you and all that you've done for us. I pray that we use whatever tips and tricks we can find to remember what this holiday is all about. I ask these things in your name, Amen.


Questions for Reflection:

*What are some ways I can find to incorporate more biblical truth in my holiday routine?

*How can I slow down and focus on the Word?  

*Do I need to carve out more time for Him?




Brandis is a former Sailor turned Air Force wife, a stay at home mom to 3 kids, and a lover of rustic country decor. She misses the Navy almost daily but is so very thankful for the time she gets with her family, dogs, & friends living near the beach.