Its Friday and my kettle has just boiled - it means just one thing. CUPPA WITH TIME!!! This week I had a chat with the lovely Rachel Edwards (but if you missed last week then catch it here)
It's really nice to meet you - please introduce yourself to us all!
My name is Rachel Edwards, I am a thirty something mom of two, soon to be three God willing, as we are currently in the early stage of the adoption process! I am married to my best friend, Dave and we are part of the pastoral leadership team and worship team at our local church Renewal Christian Centre. I run my own content writing business Rachel Edwards Writes, and as well as being an avid reader/writer, I love nothing more than playing my beautiful upcycled piano whenever I get chance!
Where do you live and what do you like/loathe about it?
We live in the heart of England, in Birmingham and we moved here from Warwick 4 years ago specifically to be closer to the church. Growing up in the countryside, I love green fields and open space which is of course a rarity in our part of the world, although we have access to some pretty spectacular countryside and parks within a short drive. The benefits of city life is that I love being able to travel by train or bus and having everything that we need as a family in close proximity, however I do frequently find myself craving a woodland walk or green view every now and then!
How many kids do you have?
We have two beautiful boys aged 6 and 3, who are the centre of our world. They are both polar opposites, one is adventurous and creative one is sensitive and snuggly. They are such an incredible blessing to us, although having two accident prone and boisterous boys has meant that my trips to A&E have been far more frequent than I had anticipated at such a young age!
What is the best thing about motherhood for you?
Nothing brings me greater joy than seeing my children's smiling faces excitedly greet me with a kiss each morning. To have been entrusted with these little lives is a privilege I don't take lightly and I am their biggest cheerleader. Watching them grow, develop and discover new things is just the most phenomenal reward for all the sleepless nights and toddler tantrums.
And what is the worst thing?!
For me the worst thing is seeing your children reflect the worst in you. So often I find myself in a face off with my 6.5 year old whose wilful nature and stubborn streak remind me more of myself at times than I would care to admit. My eldest is a born leader with big ideas and a big personality, and one of my toughest challenges as a mother is going to be trying to tame his spirit whilst still giving him rein to be all he can be, while his brother is a gentler character who will need a little more guiding and guarding of his vulnerable heart. The biggest struggle I have in motherhood is not treating my children's mistakes as my own, and not taking their tantrums as a mark of my personal failure as a mom. Yes I have a responsibility to model the right way to do or say something, however if they choose not to replicate this then this is not necessarily a reflection on my ability to be a mother, but it is highlighting a child that very much still needs mothering.
How do you try to help your children connect with God and the bible?
We try and read the Bible to the children every day, and bring God and Jesus in to our every day life with a constant prayer conversation. We have a little song that we sing when we are driving to or walking to school where we 'get dressed' in the armour of God, complete with actions too! "We've got our feet in peace, we've got the belt of truth, we've got the breast plate of righteousness, we've got the shield of faith, we've got the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the spirit!" We pray every night before bed and encourage the boys to pray through out the day for a friend or family member if they come to mind and even for passing ambulances! Our eldest attend a wonderful Church of England school and we are blessed with a truly incredible children's ministry at Renewal, and the bible studies and workbooks that the children bring home from both settings give us plenty more opportunity to talk about God and Jesus.
What is your "mission-field" at the moment?
As part of the pastoral care team I am blessed to meet a wide range of people both in and outside the church. I don't know that I have a specific mission field, as I believe that anyone who doesn't know Jesus, whether that is at the school gates or sunday service is someone that I have the potential to encourage and share the gospel with. My hearts desire is that everyone should feel included, wanted, welcomed and valued in the Kingdom of God. I have a heart to help women and young people realise their worth and reach their potential in Christ and also the inclusion and encouragement of the older generation whom I love for their wisdom, teaching and direction. As a christian on a personal and leadership level I want to see the church fully represented by all demographics and empowered, equipped and mobilised to lead the next generation.
What causes or activities are you particularly passionate about and why?
Compassion UK is a cause close to my heart, and my husband and I are proud sponsors of two gorgeous Ugandan boys who are the same age as our children. I think that the concept of being able to be a sponsor, or an advocate to another human being who is in desperate need is one of the most humbling and most heart breakingly beautiful things anyone can ever do. Child sponsorship is the greatest gift that these children will ever receive, and expressing love by reaching out to another is the very essence of what Christ did for us; showing compassion, care and unconditional love to someone who can never repay you for what you are doing.
Where do you blog and what do you blog about?
I write a faith and parenting blog called www.racheldedwards.com 'the musings of a momma in ministry' which covers a wide range of topics and themes that I have navigated in my journey with Jesus. I believe in writing real, raw blogs that reveal probably more of myself than I should be willing to share, however my favourite writers are those that write from the heart, therefore I hope to follow in their very fabulous footsteps.
Wow - thanks so much for sharing with us Rachel and praying for all these amazing things you are involved in.
Labels: cuppa with, kids, mission, motherhood