CWAHM Devotional

Do Life DifferentDo Life Different
Work-at-home mom: take a deep breath and Do Life Different as you allow these devotions for work-at-home moms to fill the vacuum of your needy heart in the chaos of your busy world.
 
Order Your Copy!

CWAHM Video Devotions

Get Our Updates!

Join our monthly newsletter!

Archive for Mixing Faith & Business

Jan
09

Why We Must Talk About Failure

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on Why We Must Talk About Failure

success or failureFailure.

Just thinking about that word makes me cringe. I think I can honestly say that there is nothing that I hate more than failing. And sadly, I fail a lot…

…every day it seems.

I set goals for myself – to eat right, treat my spouse with more kindness, not get frustrated with my kids. But it seems like the bar is constantly moving and I am consistently failing.  And my business life is no better. I set many goals each month and I may meet a few of them, but I regularly fail to meet goals as well.

So, what do we do with all this failure? Is there anything GOOD about failing?

Well, after years of failing, I’m happy to report — there is HOPE in failing.

I know that sounds like an oxymoron, but it’s true. God uses our failures to develop our perseverance in life, allow us to practice patience {thanks, God!}, and to mold us into the people He wants us to be. Each failure in our life is a notch on our…

…’becoming-more-like-Christ’ belt.

1 Peter 3:15 tells us, “…we must be always ready with an answer when asked the reason for the hope that we have.”  I don’t know about you, but each failure that God has walked me through has become part of my answer.

A couple of years ago I put my business up for sale. I was convinced that it was what I wanted and I was pretty-almost-sure that it was what God wanted, too. We caught the eye of a buyer and thought the sale was for sure. A week later the deal fell through.

I was devastated.

The failure to make this deal made me feel like I was, at my core, a failure.

But, as God walked me through that failure, He began to open my eyes to beauty in the midst of the loss. God used the failure I experienced to reignite a passion within me for my business. As my passion grew, my business grew – and it has doubled in size since that time.

Without that failure and that precious time with God as He walked me through the pain, I’m not sure where my business would have ended up. I can tell you, though, that I’ve had the opportunity to share that experience with many others who have found themselves in a place of failure and disappointment. I’m able to share with them the hope that can be found shining through…

…in those moments of despair.

And that is exactly why we MUST talk about our failures. Stuffing them down and hoping no one ever finds out we’ve failed is a losing battle.

We all fail.
We all face disappointments.
We all mess up.

And it’s ok.

The apostle Paul was a Christian killer before God met him on the road to Damascus. Talk about failure! He thought he was pleasing God when in fact he was doing the very opposite. And yet in Phillipians chapter three, Paul explains how he handled that failure:

“…forgetting the things that are behind and reaching out for the things that are ahead, with this goal in mind, I strive toward the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Phillipians 3:13-14

We all fail.

Let’s get a dialogue going and admit our failures to one another with the purpose of building each other up in the faith, encouraging each other to “strive toward the prize.”

Question: What has been your biggest failure? How has God redeemed it and used it for His glory? Share you comment below.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Jill Hart is the Founder and President of CWAHM. Jill’s entrepreneurial career began in her teens when she spent a summer working with her father who ran his own business. When he put her in charge of a Coke machine and allowed her to keep the profits, she saw the benefits of being her own boss. She is the founder of Christian Work at Home Ministries and the co-author of So You Want To Be a Work-at-Home Mom. Jill has articles published in In Touch Magazine, P31 Woman magazine and Focus on the Family’s Thriving Family, as well as across the web on sites like DrLaura.com.

Jill has appeared on national television and radio talk shows and can be heard every Monday morning on KGBI, 100.7 FM. She speaks to audiences around the country about faith and business topics. Learn more about Jill and connect with her on Facebook , Twitter, and Instagram.

Comments Comments Off on Why We Must Talk About Failure
Jan
02

Who Are We Becoming?

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on Who Are We Becoming?

“We usually focus on what we’re doing or where we’re going, but God’s primary concern is who we’re becoming in the process.” – Mark Batterson, The Circle Maker

I can’t tell you how much I LOVE this quote. If I could tell each women that I speak to, each client that I coach only ONE thing, this is what I would want to tell them, “God, in the end, isn’t nearly as concerned with your success as you are.”  He is much more worried about who you are becoming on the inside. When we get our focus right – abiding in Christ and making the choices that will help you become WHO God wants you to be, only then will we find…

…true success and true contentment.

I spent many years building a business, worrying whether or not I was doing things right. When I finally grasped the concept that Batterson is talking about, it freed me from these 3 traps of the enemy:

1.  The Comparison Trap – When I am solely worried about pleasing God, it doesn’t matter what those around me are doing. Their road to success may not be the road that God wants me to take … and that’s ok.

2. The Failure Trap – I used to see failure as a big ugly monster just waiting to trip me up around every corner. Now I can view failures learning experiences. They don’t drag me down like sinking sand any longer. I can acknowledge them, learn from them and move on. One step closer to WHO God wants me to be. Read More→

Comments Comments Off on Who Are We Becoming?
Dec
26

It’s Okay Not To Fit In

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on It’s Okay Not To Fit In

stand out“Wow!”

“Whoa! Look at that!”

“Mom … are you sure this is OUR hotel?”

These were the reactions of my kids, on a vacation we took a few years ago, as we pulled our tiny Subaru into the valet parking drive of a four-star hotel in downtown Colorado Springs. Because of the cost, we generally stay at lower-class hotels (think Holiday Inn), but this time we were able to manage something a bit nicer.

As we walked into the hotel after turning our car over to the valet, I looked back at our little buggy. We had come out of church the Sunday before to find a nice, big dent and scrape down one side and there hadn’t been time to get it fixed before leaving on vacation.  I had nearly forgotten all about it.

…until I looked back.

What I saw when I looked back was a picture similar to the Beverly Hillbillies arriving at their new mansion. There were expensive, sleek looking cars lining the circle drive in front of the hotel … and then there was our car, tiny, dented and dirty from the drive.

I began to sense that “we-don’t-measure-up” feeling in the pit of my stomach. You know the one I mean – the one that causes you to look around and compare yourself to everyone in sight. What I saw didn’t help. Marble floors. Crystal chandeliers. Thin women with perfectly dressed children walking serenely about in the lobby. Ok, maybe they weren’t all thin … and not all of their children were walking serenely … but still.

That entire week I found myself battling the pressure of comparison. Nothing about me felt like it measured up. My hair wouldn’t cooperate, my clothes weren’t right, my kids weren’t wearing khaki pants or frilly dresses. Read More→

Comments Comments Off on It’s Okay Not To Fit In
Dec
19

Compassion Instead of Comparison

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on Compassion Instead of Comparison

Do you ever find yourself judging others? I don’t intend to judge the way those around me dress or talk or style their hair. And when I am consciously thinking about it, I know that I am certainly no better than anyone…

…if anything I’m probably worse.

But those judgmental thoughts still creep in.

In the grocery store when a fellow mom can’t seem to control her cranky two year-old. My children never acted like that.

In line at the Post Office when another woman has on an old, out of style outfit. I would never wear that.

It happens all the time. Without even consciously planning to judge others, we consistently compare ourselves to others in our minds to see how they stack up to how we see ourselves.

Gulp.

As followers of Christ, we know that we are not to judge others. I came across a verse recently that was a painful reminder of why we are commanded not to judge:

“For who makes you different from anyone else? What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you boast as though you did not?”  1 Corinthians 4:7 NIV

Ouch!

We are no different than anyone else. King Solomon, the wisest king in history, laments this same thing in the book of Ecclesiastes.

“The wise man has eyes in his head, while the fool walks in the darkness; but I came to realize that the same fate overtakes them both.” Ecclesiastes 2:14

We all want to be special. We want to stand out from the crowd. Be the best, the prettiest, the smartest. But the simple truth is that as humans, we are all sinners. We all fall short of the standard of holiness when we compare ourselves to the only One worth comparison – God (see Romans 3:23).

So, the next time we find ourselves comparing ourselves to the woman in line in front of us; the next time we think that we are somehow better than another person, let us remember that all that we may have – beauty, money, education – all of those things we have received from God.

And may that thought bring us to a place of humble gratitude that helps shape our minds so that we can catch those judgmental thoughts and cast them away immediately.

Let’s nurture attitudes of compassion instead of comparison.

Will you join me?

Comments Comments Off on Compassion Instead of Comparison
Dec
12

When You Want To Quit

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on When You Want To Quit

Office Worker with Mountain of PaperworkHave you had one of those days where you just wanted to quit? I reached that point recently – I just wanted to lay everything down and take a nap…

…a five year nap.

I felt overwhelmed, stretched-too-thin and had convinced myself that certainly anyone else could all these things better than I could. So why bother? Why not step away from it all and quit?

What do you do when the world feels like it’s crumbling around you? When all those plates you’re spinning in the air seem as if they are tipping in different directions, ready to crash down upon your head at any moment?

Do you give in and run away, like I was tempted to do? Or do you dig your heels in and tell yourself, “This too shall pass.”

It frustrates me that at times like these my first reaction is always to run and hide (and long for that nap…). I’m grateful that God places people in my life to remind me of His truth and my responsibilities.

I shared my feelings and sense of being overwhelmed with a trusted friend during this time and they gently nudged me with the truth straight from God’s Word. In 1 Peter chapter five, we’re told, starting with verse six: Read More→

Comments Comments Off on When You Want To Quit
Dec
06

Seeing Our Work (No Matter What) As a God-honoring Calling

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on Seeing Our Work (No Matter What) As a God-honoring Calling

We all want our work to have meaning.Bible and coffee

It’s pretty much as simple as that … and has been since time began. Way back in the time when the book of Ecclesiastes was written (many scholars believe it was written in the 3rd century B.C.), the author’s main frustration was that he wanted his work to be meaningful.

So I hated life, because the work that is done under the sun was grievous to me. All of it is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.  I hated all the things I had toiled for under the sun, because I must leave them to the one who comes after me. What do people get for all the toil and anxious striving with which they labor under the sun? All their days their work is grief and pain; even at night their minds do not rest. This too is meaningless.

Ecclesiastes 3:17-18, 22-23

Pretty uplifting stuff, huh?

Since the beginning of time we humans have desired to make a difference in the world. For our work here to COUNT for something. And, whether we know or not, for our work to glorify God. Only then can our work have meaning.

But, what if our work isn’t centered around sharing the gospel. What if we don’t work in a church? Can our work still be a God-honoring calling?

The answer is a resounding yes! Read More→

Comments Comments Off on Seeing Our Work (No Matter What) As a God-honoring Calling
Nov
18

It’s All About Attitude

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on It’s All About Attitude

stay-at-home-momsWe have been having an attitude issue around our house lately. When we ask our kids to do something or remind them of something they need to do, their reply is, “I know.”

When they are corrected, they respond with, “I knew that.”

Maybe this doesn’t sounds like a big deal. And the words themselves aren’t bad in and of themselves. It’s the attitude behind the words, the attitude that shines through the tone of how those words are said that gets under my skin. In fact, their attitude about drove me crazy until I realized…

…my kids had learned it from ME!

I heard myself say it one morning. I was reading my Bible just soaking up God’s Word, reading a passage I was very familiar with when all of a sudden one of the verses jumped off the page and my heart was convicted about something within me that needed to change.

And guess what my next thought was?

I know.

Followed closely by, “But I’m working on it Lord. That’s enough, right?”

Here I was responding to God Almighty with the glib answer of “I know,” just like my kids answer me. Read More→

Comments Comments Off on It’s All About Attitude
Nov
09

Marketing Offline Can Increase Your Online Business

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on Marketing Offline Can Increase Your Online Business

jill-new14The Internet can be a scary place for those looking for a home-based business opportunity. The fear of not connecting personally with others is one concern and many people have been “taken” by online scams in their search for a legitimate business and are fearful to take any more risks. One way to overcome fears such as these is to market your online business locally. By simply offering the person a contact that they can speak to and possibly even meet face to face you will making the statement that your business is legitimate and trustworthy.

It is effective to market your online business locally primarily because potential customers and business recruits prefer to have the option of speaking with the business owner face to face. By attracting customers locally, you can maximize the opportunities to meet with them. You will no longer be that “someone they found online,” but someone that they will be able to relate to and feel confident doing business with.

But how do you market locally? Here are some excellent tips:

Besides the common local advertising routes, such as Newspaper Ads, Yellow Pages, Etc., another effective (and inexpensive) way to advertise locally is to post business related flyers around your community. Many grocery stores, libraries, bookstores, and office supply stores offer bulletin boards for this purpose. Make yours stand out and be recognized, yet professional enough to warrant someone trusting you with their business. Also, if possibly have a tear-off section on your flyer so they can take your number and leave your flyer.

Look for events geared toward small businesses. There are organizations, such as your local Chamber of Commerce, that hold events across the nation to help promote the small business owners. At events such as these, you can purchase a booth and make hundreds of local contacts, as well as sales, all in one day. Read More→

Comments Comments Off on Marketing Offline Can Increase Your Online Business
Oct
11

My Wish For Superpowers

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on My Wish For Superpowers

Jill Hart - Mixing Faith & Business blogDo you ever wish that you had a superpower? My son, who was 4 at the time, told me not long ago that when he gets to heaven, he’s going to ask God for super powers … specifically, “laser eyes.”

My Wish for Superpowers, by Jill HartI’m not sure that I’d want laser eyes (sound painful!), but maybe the power to control things – my life, my kids, my housework. :) This week, though, I’ve been wishing that I had the power to get it all done. So many days I feel as if I need an extra 3 or 4 hours just to accomplish the day to day tasks of life.

What superpower would you choose?

As I pondered super powers and the word “Power,” I realized that although it is many times defined using words like “strength” or “might,” in Jesus we see another definition of power. He IS power in the true sense of the word. Even when he humbled Himself to be human, He didn’t use power to destroy or to have control over mankind. He was the embodiment of power, yet the power that He exemplified was a power of servanthood. Read More→

Comments Comments Off on My Wish For Superpowers
Oct
04

Top Tips on Finding a Telecommuting Opportunity Today

Posted by: | Comments Comments Off on Top Tips on Finding a Telecommuting Opportunity Today

My first step into the work-at-home world was as a data extractor for a company in my local area. Believe it or not, I found that job in the Classified Ads section of the newspaper. That, however, was ten years ago. A lot has changed in the last ten years – the internet alone has grown by leaps and bounds. So, what are some of the best ways for people in today’s market to find a telecommuting opportunity?

Top Tips on Finding a Telecommuting Opportunity Today, by Jill HartClassified Ads – One good thing about the technology available to us today is that most Classified Ads are now not only listed in print newspapers, but online as well. Take a look through these to see if there are businesses in your area looking for local at-home workers. Keep in mind that you must do your research on any company or opportunity that interests you. Check with your local BBB or other local organizations to make sure the companies are in good standing before you apply.

Online Job Sites – Most online job websites now offer telecommuting listings. Use the search term “telecommute” to help give you the best results. There are even websites that cater to the work-at-home crowd such as HireMyMom.com. Remember – always be sure to read the fine print, and research each company/opportunity that interests you.

Freelance – More and more at-home workers are freelancing on a contract basis. Writers, web designers, graphic artists, and more are finding this a viable option to allow them to work from home. There are websites, such as upwork.com, that cater specifically to the freelance community and make it easy for freelancers to connect with companies and individuals looking to hire them. Read More→

Comments Comments Off on Top Tips on Finding a Telecommuting Opportunity Today