To Be Greater

It’s that time of year again! Backpacks were stuffed, hair was straightened, outfits were selected (and changed, and selected again), cinnamon rolls were devoured (with fried eggs. I promise I did not send them to school on sugar with no protein!), signs were made at the very.last.minute, and pictures were taken.


Some good pictures, even!


I won’t lie, I teared up a bit after posting this one to Facebook last night. This little baby, the one born during the heyday of this blog after a year-long 3yo prayer. (Gosh, I really teared after finding the link to that one!) I sent him off to kindergarten today! Actually, he practically ran there himself, 20 minutes early and a good 50 meters in front of the rest of us. He was all settled in at his desk when we arrived, smiling ear to ear.


He’s ready, and so am I. I’ve long bragged on our Tiny School. This year their theme is Super Heroes and they’ve already made some heroic additions to the junior high schedule, broadening the availability of classes to our kiddos, meeting their needs right where they are at, even when budgets are nowhere near bountiful. The staff works together, often with limited resources, and they get it done with a great attitude.

That’s my goal this year. To Be Greater. Mostly in attitude. I need a Super Hero attitude.

Stacey says it best. My attitude is the MOST important thing I have control over in the day-to-day as a work from home, homemaking mom. I do a lot around here (contrary to what the corner cobwebs would tell you), but what I do isn’t nearly as important as how I do it and how I treat my people.


No one cares about scrubbed toilets if mom’s a grump.

The (necessary) paychecks brought in, whether from VA work, writing on this blog, or sharing a wellness lifestyle with essential oils, aren’t appreciated much if mom is constantly shooing the people away so she can “get back to work.” The work is important, but these people are my life.

It’s hard to do it all (and I, of course, DON’T) with the kids’ active schedules, littles who need attention and supervision, meals to prepare, messes to clean up (again and again), and distractions from jobs that live in my computer and are pinging dinging ringing all the live long day. But I can still be a Super Hero to the people who need me most, and do it joyfully.

The more mature I become (I can’t possibly be getting older, right?), the more I realize that Super Hero status isn’t earned from Pinterest Boards. It’s not doled out based on what I do or do not feed my family. I don’t earn awards for how much I save at the grocery store (but, yesterday, saved $50, total bill $70, so BAM).

My goal this year is To Be Greater in how I handle the everyday, right where God has me. To work through my day with purpose and intention, shaving off wasted time, bringing back the Joy in interruptions and messes, because this is what I signed up for, and it truly is a privilege.

Greater_Poster (2)

Ever cry watching a movie trailer? Ever ordered the book real quick so you can get it read before the movie comes out? I’m a sucker for inspirational, real-life stories, and friends, this is it! Brandon Burlsworth was “nothing special.” He just wanted to do what he loved, and was determined To Be Greater.

GREATER is an inspirational movie based on the life of Brandon Burlsworth that reminds us that any dream is possible. Brandon had one dream – to play for the Arkansas Razorbacks.  Unfortunately, Brandon was a clumsy player who lacked the physical prowess to make the team.  He was written off by coaches and teased by his fellow teammates.  Undeterred, Brandon continued to show-up for practice.  He woke up before anyone else and worked harder than anyone else, until his determination paid off.  Not only was he given an opportunity to walk-on and play football – he became one of the greatest players on the field, and was drafted to the Indianapolis Colts. GREATER releases in theaters this August 26.

I see date night in the near future!




Who shows you how To Be Greater in your life, friends? Comment below. I have a $25 WalMart gift card for one of you to share with your Super Hero! (Giveaway ends Sunday, August 28, at 12pm, CST. Winner will be randomly chosen and notified by email.)








  1. Love your phrase “bring back the joy in the interruptions and messes”. It’s really all about perspective. So wise.

    Staying focused on purpose and connected to the One who gives purpose makes a big difference in my days.

  2. Kelly Hess says:

    Great inspiration today! I try to show joy as much as possible in front of my kids!

  3. My friend, Mindy, shows me how to be greater, which usually equates to finding sanity during the craziness of motherhood! Plus, she tries all the Pinterest projects first and then I get to do all the ones that her kids loved the most without any fails! Ha!

  4. My kids show me how to be greater everyday!

  5. Linda Shifflett says:

    I have a few friends that help keep me well grounded. We work together as a team to help each other and that certainly makes us greater individuals.

  6. Glad to have you back blogging!

    My friends who are not only mamas to their own kids, but who open their hearts and home to kids who need a safe place via fostering–those are the ones who show me how to be greater.

  7. Thank you for this post and challenging me to step up and be greater. At this season in my life, where we are, there are a few blogs that I hang on to because they challenge me in this way. I have dedicated myself to pouring into those around me (at home and at church) but there isn’t always someone there to push, to inspire, and to challenge me to more. Thankfully, because of a blog challenge last year, I am back to reading my Bible on a near daily basis, and that is probably where I get the greatest help, encouragement, push, reproof, and example of what God expects of me.

  8. My son Andrew. He’s 16 and has been thru alot in his short life but has triumphant over it all and his turning into an amazing young man. He definitely shows me how to be greater with each passing day!!

  9. I have to say My kids are the ones that have shown me HOW to be greater…being their champion and cheerleader…I need to remember that when the going gets tough or the roller coaster hits a new “bump”

  10. Oh, how I’ve missed your blog. This post just hits home in so many ways–I just checked out three books about relationships and not yelling at your kids. I’m learning that it is a slippery slope from “I don’t yell that much” to knowing that really, I YELL TOO MUCH. Yes, this year, I NEED TO BE GREATER. The movie sounds awesome.

    Oh, and your hope-inspiring mention of your infertility journey also brings a smile to my face. With an only-child-9 year old, and 5 years of “trying” under our belt, it reminds me that we never know where life is headed. We’ve recently made some traction in our journey–completing our adoption home study and also working with a creighton-model based physician that identified some luteal defects and hormone issues. Like you, I don’t know where this wild journey will end up, but I’m confident that God has a plan that will challenge and bless us beyond our wildest imagination!

    Welcome back!

    • Beth, I found Amy’s blog back when she had only three kids and they were praying and praying for more. I prayed for her and she prayed for me (five years of marriage, lots of miscarriages, no kids).

      Four and a half years later, she’s got SIX KIDS and I’ve got three, one by adoption and two by birth. I’ve also mothered four others through foster care for varying lengths of time. And Amy, nothing like ALL THESE KIDS to inspire us to be greater, for them.

      Keep seeking answers. God likes kids, God likes families.

      • What an awesome journey you’ve had as well! And-so so true …”God likes kids, God likes families” Thanks for the encouragement! Blessings!

    • You’re so sweet, Beth. Hugs to you! Gosh. “creighton-model” “luteal defects” You are speaking my language. I might email you with a couple of resources.

  11. I have so many people showing me how to be greater in my life, both from my upbringing with my parents and grandparents, to the people I am around every day today. I am very fortunate.

  12. Rebecca S. says:

    My Husband inspires me to be greater. He works hard at his job as a high school assistant principal. He helps kids everyday and makes hard decisions. I am thankful for him and his support as I stay at home and home school our three kids: two high school age and one middle school age.

  13. Hey, Amy!
    When I got home from the Kingman County Fair Friday night, I wondered if that was you in the matching “Choose Joy” t-shirt! (God bless Crystal for her sweet design). I wish we could have stopped that “taxi” so we could meet. Maybe someday? Thank you for being real. We mamas need to give one another space to REAL! My children are my super heroes– they bring the best and the worst in me so that we can learn to repent together. I do CHOOSE JOY 😉

    • Oh my goodness!!!!! Yes, we must meet sometime! I badly wanted to stop the taxi so we could take a picture together to send to Crystal, but I wasn’t sure I wanted to be THAT crazy lady! 🙂

  14. Myeshia U. says:

    My husband inspires me to be greater. He is always there to listen to my happiest moments and there to encourage me through the rough ones.

  15. Barbara Youngren says:

    My kids and grandkids show me how to be greater! I am long over the hill from the stage you are at with your kids and applaud you for recognizing the importance of attitude. Long after your kids are out of the house, they won’t remember what you did for them nearly as well as remembering those attitudes, kind words, sweet smiles. Keep it up!

    • I always appreciate “been there” reminders from moms in a further stage of parenting. Thank you!

  16. My daughter

  17. Laura Oller says:

    My older mom friends inspire me to be greater. I’m happy to see you posting again as well!

  18. My husband inspires me. He is a teacher and is always trying to improve his classes and find new ways to inspire his students and to help meet their individual needs.

  19. I am lucky to have many friends who inspire me to be greater whether it be because of the struggles and challenges they face on a daily basis that make my life look easy or those friends that remind me on a daily basis that I am greater than I give myself credit for. Blessed to have both types or friends.

  20. My husband and kids.

  21. My kids, my husband, and some great friends who have gone/are going through very difficult situations with much better attitudes than I’m sure I’d have

  22. Great post! Glad to have you back 🙂

  23. My pastor inspires me to be better. He challenges me to see past my own desires and seek the Lord above all else!

  24. Jennie C. says:

    My little people…oh do my flaws come popping through way too often…they deserve better…I can do better….

  25. My daughter inspires me to be greater everyday! I learned to ask for help to conceive her. I realized my strength after 32 hours of labor for her. I learned to trust myself when the bulk of her medical care fell to me. I watch her live a happy & healthy life everyday despite her diabetes. She makes me want to be a greater mother, woman, wife and Christian more than any other person I’ve ever met! Tomorrow is her 4th birthday and the anniversary of the day I promised to be more!

  26. My children! I inspire to be more patient and loving with them.

  27. Hi Amy!
    So good to see your blogpost! You have been missed, but I totally understand and admire your commitment to focus on the everyday life with your family. It’s awfully hard to experience “the finer things” when you’re neck-deep in too many commitments.
    My oldest is a senior this year, and my others are right behind her so I’m feeling, acutely, the reality that my time with them at home is fleeting. My focus, now more than ever, is to be present and intentional and savor all the moments.
    Any my sweet husband, who leads and loves us all so well, is definitely my superhero. 🙂

  28. My kids are inspiring me to be Greater and I’m using some wonderful writers and blog-posters to learn to get there!

  29. chickie brewer says:

    Mine is my Christian supervisor. He is dealing with cancer and now he has to get radiation therapy soon… He still comes to work and is very encouraging to me and others.

  30. Birdiebee says:

    I have two BFF’s that show me to be greater in life and that is why they are my BFF’s.

  31. My family inspire me to be greater…..I feel like I fail them daily. My prayer this summer has been to be more like my Lord and it seems like the harder I pray that them more I fall short. My family deserves my best side, my greatest effort. Funny how sometimes our families see and get the worst of us!

  32. My husband inspires me

  33. My husband. If I get cranky, he gets nicer. If I try to pick a fight (not that I’ve ever done that), he diffuses it.