Martha, Martha

Martha, Martha

Luke 10:39 “And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard his word.”

Luke 10:40 “But Martha was cumbered (distracted) about much serving, and came to Him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? Bid her therefore that she help me.”

Luke 10:41 “And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful (anxious) and troubled about many things.”

What is Christ trying to teach us in this scenario? As Christian women, we live in a hectic, busy, world – one with deadlines, “to do” lists not to mention moms who drive their children and all the other children in the neighbor to soccer practice, basketball practice, piano lessons, etc.  At work, we have deadlines, dinners to attend, etc., entertainment (this is a huge distraction) all those things, which in and of itself is not evil; but too much activity and leaving out the most important things in our spiritual life can truly make our branch of the vine wither, if we don’t stoop at Christ’s feet, which is His word and speak with Him, it is worth nothing. We will not enjoy the spirit – love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith that we so desire and lack in our society.  (Galatians 5:22)

To-Do List

What’s more, how do people view you?  How do other mothers see you?  What example do you set to your children?  Most important, what does your Heavenly Father and Brother Jesus Christ think of you? He wants you to be fed, not only physical food that the Israelites ate daily or it would spoil, but the manna from heaven, Christ’s own words.

Christ also gave another parable concerning a feast that had been prepared and invited many.   Let’s look at this also an indication how Christ’s views sitting at His feet listening to His words compared to spiritual food (the Bible).

Luke 14:16 “Then said he unto him, A certain man made a great supper, and bade many:

Luke 14:17 “And sent his servant at supper time to say to them that were bidden, Come; for all things are now (spiritual food – Bible) ready.”

Luke 14:18 “And they all with one consent began to make excuse. The first said unto him, I have bought a piece of ground, and I must needs go and see it: I pray thee have me excused.”

Lu ke 14:19 “And another said, I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to prove them: I pray thee have me excused.”

Luke 14:20 “And another said, I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.”

Luke 14:21 “So that servant came, and showed his lord these things. Then the master of the house being angry said to his servant, Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind.”

Luke 14:24 “For I say unto you that none of those men which were bidden shall taste of my supper (spiritual food – manna).”

Now as all these things are not bad in themselves, they are very good, in fact, but why was the Christ angry?

Purchasing a piece of land.

Proving his oxen.

Marries a wife.

What did Christ say to Martha concerning Mary…..

Luke 10:42 “But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.”

Let’s take in God’s spiritual food, God’s manna, His word, and build a prayerful relationship with Jesus Christ and our Father.  We will become filled with more and more of His spirit, which will include these things “joy, peace, longsuffering, goodness faith, etc.”

And let us leave a legacy for our children to include in their lifelong pursuit of happiness.  Let’s not let Christ have to say to us “Martha, Martha.”

The song below has great meaning for me as a mother teaching my children that God comes first everyday.  To stop the sound on my blog post, see the right side of the page and click on the pause button.

Momma Liked To Burn The Midnight Oil

“Midnight Oil”

Mama always got up early
And she never went to bed ’til late
Yet, I never heard her complainin’
About her family of eight
There were times she should have been sleepin’
But, late in the midnight hour
She’d get down on her knees
And you could hear her say,
“Lord fill them will your power”[Chorus]
Mama like to burn the midnight oil
Down on her knees in prayer
If you asked why she did it
She said she did it care she cared
Now Mama always talked to Jesus
When she knelt by her rocking chair
Oh, I’m glad my mama was willin’
To burn the midnight oil in prayer

Now Mama’s gone [so quickly]
I’ve got a family of my own
Yet, whenever the clock strikes midnight
You will find me all alone
That’s when I start to call upon Jesus
For His wisdom and His power
Cause it seems that He loves
To hear a Daddy’s prayer
Even in the midnight hour

[Chorus]

Years from now, when my grown little boy
Has a family of his own
Will he kneel down and pray
When the hour gets late
And pass the legacy on

[Chorus]

Cause now there’s a Daddy who’s willing
To burn the midnight oil in prayer

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Published in: on July 7, 2015 at 5:02 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Remarkable Women of the Bible ~ Rahab ~ Chain of Choices

012-joshua-rahab-spies

A Portrait of Transformation

We have gone through the significant faith of Rahab. She certainly demonstrated her faith by her works.

James 2:17-22 “Even so faith, if it has not works is dead, being alone. Do you see that faith was working together with his works, and by works faith was made perfect?”

A Chain of Choices

When we look at Rahab’s faith, we see a series of choices linked together.

What was her first faith link? She chose to believe the spies.

“When Joshua’s scouts said the Israelites would cross the Jordan River and take the land, Rahab believe them. By faith she said, ‘I know that the Lord has given you the land” (Joshua 2:0) and “according to your words, so be it.”

Again, she had heard of the God of Israel and His mighty works through the deliverance of Egypt, the plagues and the miracles. She believed in His supremacy, fastening another link on the chain of her growing faith.

“How long and how strong is your chain of faith? Are you an ever-growing woman of faith? Is that fact evident in the choices you make? Each sunrise, each day, each hour, and each minute brings tests to your faith.” pg 121

Joshua encouraged the Israelites to grow that chain of faith by stating, “Choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve…but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Joshua 24:15)

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“What you believe and whom you serve will determine your choices and how you work out and act upon your faith – which will determine how you behave. For starters, do you believe God’s word?” pg 122

If you believe God’s word, it will make a big difference in the choices you make! In the culture in which we live, if we are Christians, we need to make hard choices at times, and that takes a chain of faith.

Let’s see how the belief in what God said worked in the faith of a few servants of God.

“Abraham, the father of faith, believed God when He promised “I will make you a great nation.” (Genesis 12:2; 15:6)

“The apostle Paul exhibited this same faith during a storm he encountered as he sailed to Rome. He declared, “I believe God that it will be just as it was told me.” (Acts 27:25) pg 122

What is the different between doubt and faith?

“Doubt sees the obstacles, Faith sees the way.
Doubt sees the darkest night. Faith sees the day.
Doubt dreads to take a step, Faith soars on high,
Doubt questions, “Who believes?” Faith answers “I.”

1 Peter 3:12 “For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers…”

Ephesians 6:10 “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.”

Everything about Rahab’s situation seemed to work against her ever becoming a woman who loved God and trusted in Him. She was a pagan, and she was a prostitute.

….but here is another of Rahab’s choices in her chain of faith.

“Rahab chose to secure a promise – believing in the ultimate triumph of Jehovah, Rahab asked for and received a promise from the spies that they would save her life and all her family members when they returned to annihilate the city.” (Joshua 2:12-14)

There are many promises of God in His word. We can choose to ignore them or we can add to our chain of faith by believing them, trusting that God will bring to pass what He has promised.

Here are a few promises that Christ inspired to be written in God’s word:

—-Jesus promised “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Hebrews 13:5).

—-Paul promised “My God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in gory by Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:19)
—-Jesus promised “My grace is sufficient for you.” (2 Corinthians 12:9)

“Your trust in God’s promises – Let us again follow in the footsteps of God’s beautiful woman of gracious faith, Rahab. Let us secure and appropriate God’s promises for ourselves. What is God promising you today? Why not spend some time reading His Word and looking for one of His precious promises. Then, in…and by faith, make the choice to trust.”

Rahab’s Life Before Faith

Place of residence: Jericho
Occupation: Prostitute
Destiny: Condemnation pg 124

Rahab’s Life After Faith

Place of Residence: Israel
Occupation: Wife and mother
Destiny: Salvation pg 126

What’s Our Life Before Faith

Place of residence: Satan’s world.
Occupation: None of His
Destiny: Condemnation

Our Life After Faith

Place of Residence: God’s Household
Occupation: Servant of the most High.
Destiny: Eternal life.

Blessings of faith for Rahab

–She and her family were spared during Jericho’s destruction.

—She lived in Israel the rest of her days.

—She married Salmon. She was the mother of Boaz who married Ruth who bore Obed whose son was Jesse, the father of David…through whose line came Jesus, the Messiah and Savior oft he world! (Matthew 1:5-6)] pg 125

Why not take this moment and begin your chain of faith by making choices and following through using God’s word.

The Transformation Blessing

“It’s been a longtime practice of artists to pain over their less impressive works. sometimes when they do so, they end up creating a grand masterpiece on a canvas that once held a less-than-remarkable picture. Prepare yourself, dear woman of faith, as we view just such a canvas in God’s Hebrews 11 portrait gallery. It’s His picture of Rahab. As we look intently at Rahab’s portrait, we see that hers is a picture on a picture, a “before-and-after” composition.”

Published in: on January 16, 2015 at 1:55 am  Leave a Comment  

The Remarkable Women of the Bible ~ Chapter 10

Rahab Speaks With Spies

Rahab ~ Cameo of Courage

“Rehab took two men and hid them.” ~ Joshua 2:4

When you read Bible stories to your children at bedtime, one may pass over the story of Rahab because of her profession as a harlot. Yet, Rahab is one the most dramatic “before and after” stories in the Bible.

The scene was dark and grim for the idol-worshipping residents of Jericho, as God was leading the Israelites to conquer the land; but the city would not be taken without the power of faith, not only of the men that marched around the walls of the city seven time before God had miraculously caused the walls fall, but also for one special woman, Rahab. This woman lived in a home attached to the walls of the city. Rahab and her people had heard of the Great God of the Israelites and feared Him:

Joshua 2:9 “And she said unto the men, I know that the LORD hath given you the land, and that your terror is fallen upon us, and that all the inhabitants of the land faint because of you.”

Joshua 2:10 “For we have heard how the LORD dried up the water of the Red sea for you, when ye came out of Egypt; and what ye did unto the two kings of the Amorites, that were on the other side Jordan, Sihon and Og, whom ye utterly destroyed.”

Joshua 2:11 “And as soon as we had heard these things, our hearts did melt, neither did there remain any more courage in any man, because of you: for the LORD your God, he is God in heaven above, and in earth beneath.”

I am certain, however, that even though the people of Jericho trembled at what they heard of God’s intervention for Israel, they didn’t have the faith to repent before God, but she did. It’s one thing to hear of God, and another to repent and have faith in Him.

Rahab must have pondered the difference between her wooden and stone idols and the true God, that he had the power over all creation – not only power over man, but power over the earth, the sea, and the sky. Her gods could not do these miracles. Her gods were idols that she know from her childhood. They, however, could not do what the God of Israel miraculously had done. She believed and had faith.

Rehab Letting Down The Spies

You see, Rahab had been chosen beforehand by God because He knew where her heart lay.  She indeed believed in Him and had the courage and the faith to help the Israelites, those chosen of this great God Who had helped them.  Still, it was her choice to believe and have faith in the one true God. We always have choice, dear ones, no matter what situation we find ourselves in.

“After God’s grace touched and cleansed the soul of Rahab the harlot, and after her many heroic acts of faith (which we’re going to inspect one at a time, God opened the windows of heaven and poured out His rich, abundant blessings upon her life.” Pg 112

What were some of Rahab’s blessings? For one, Rahab was spared the invasion, and not only her, but her whole family! Yet, there is more….

Faith in God

 

Let’s fast forward:

— Rahab married Salmon, a prince in the house of Judah.

— Rahab begat Boaz….whose son was Obed…whose son was Jesse…whose son was David (Ruth 20-22)…through whose line Jesus was born (Matthew 1:1,5) Pg 112

But what of the title of this blog “Rahab Cameo of Courage.”

How is a cameo made?

Rahab Cameo of Courage

“Most women admire a delicate and carefully crafted cameo. The process of engraving a cameo begins with a multi-layered stone or shell. An engraver first etches a design, usually the profile of a woman, on the piece and then sets about carving a relief in the top layer. Lower layers serve as the background for the portrait.” ~ Pg 113

The results are a breathtaking contrast, a light color set against a dark background. Indeed Rahab was that light against her dark past and the grim backdrop of godlessness, war, and impending death in his city.

Rahab’s life offers us a cameo – a cameo of courage.

You may be in a dark situation right now or you may have been in a dark situation before God called you. It is the woman who believes and has faith in the one true God no matter what the circumstances are and uses that faith to DO the will of God in her life that are crafted in the cameos of faith.

“Rahab lived out what the New Testament apostle James wrote,

“Be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves…What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works?…Faith by itsef, if it does not have works, is dead.” (James 1:22; 2:14, 17)

“Pray, dear one! Ask God about your faith. Is it merely a “profession” of faith, or is there living proof that you are truly in “possession” of a living faith?” Pg 119

Rahab Woman of Faith

To See Previous Chapter, please click on the categories section at

the top of this page and click on the “Remarkable

Women of the Bible” category. 

Published in: on November 19, 2014 at 12:35 pm  Leave a Comment  

“The Remarkable Women of the Bible” Book Study Chapter 1

The Remarkable Women of the Bible

“Eve – Remarkable Creation”

What first comes to your mind when you think on the creation of Eve? Does rebellion, deception, and an overall feeling of contempt for her because of her choice when it came to her disobedience to God’s command to not take to herself the fruit of the tree of The Knowledge of Good and Evil? I know it happens at times to me when I think of her. Her name brings to mind man’s contempt for God’s authority.  Yet, Eve was just as human as you and I.  Adam and Eve were created flesh and blood. In Romans 8:7, it speaks of the flesh that is not subject to the law of God; and neither indeed was she.

“Because the carnal (fleshly) mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.”

~ Romans 8:7

Adam and Eve were carnal.  They were made of flesh and blood, and so are we.

After Eve Ate The Apple

Would we have done any better? We scoff a bit at that question, but when I think about my temptations in life, sugar cravings, etc. it’s not so hard for me to fathom the pull she must have felt; after all, all of the trees were beautiful to the eye and had fruit to be desired and this one was also desired to make one wise, and it was situated conveniently right in the center of the garden. Also, she had the added trial of Satan right there egging her on. God knew the draw that Satan could possibly have on them.  That is why during God’s soon coming 1,000-year millennial reign, Satan will be bound; God knows the sway Satan has over us; and He willingly pardons our sins if we truly repent.

We do not know if Adam and Eve repented, but God had mercy, killing animals and using the skins to cover their nakedness (Revelation 3:17), which I believe to be their sin. Fig leaves would not do. It takes blood to cover sins. I believe this was a picture of Christ eventually coming to the earth and shedding His blood, reconciling men back to their God. But God  stated in the Old Testament that the blood of bulls and goats can never take away sin, only a promise of a better sacrifice, Jesus Christ could. (Hebrews 9:23-2).  Then, you might ask, why were they thrown out of the garden?  Simply put, without Christ’s sacrificial blood, the power of death wouldn’t have been defeated and there could be no eternal life. So, the tree of Life was made inaccessible to them.

Adam and Eve Cast Out Of The Garden

“And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.”

~ Genesis 3:15

According to the book The Remarkable Women of the Bible,in chapter 1 Eve was remarkable in the “firsts” in her role as the first woman to ever to walk the face of the planet.  She was the first person created to be a man’s perfect help-meet, the first wife, the first mother, etc. Only together could Adam have been complete, in the image of God, and not until both of them were created that God said His creation was VERY good! Notice in God’s word, all the creation days preceding this were proclaimed good, but on the day that Adam and Eve were created, it was “Very good!”

“So God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them.”

~ Genesis 1:27

Eve Created From Adam's Rib

You as a woman are a unique creation.

“Accept your femininity — There’s no need to feel inferior, second-class or second-rate.  No, woman was God’s last, most beautiful creation.  It was only after God presented women that He proclaimed His creation was “very good.” (Genesis 1:31) Adam and Eve were alike, yet they were different from one another.  One was female (Genesis 1:27), yet together as well as individually they reflected God’s image and His glory!” pg 12

You can also reflect God’s glory when:

~ You give life through your physical efforts to care for others.

~ You share spiritual life by telling others about Jesus Christ and God the Father

~ You are the life of your home, bringing the sparkle of laughter and joy to other people.

~ You pass physical life on to your children.

~You can also help your children have the opportunity to come into God’s family by the gospel of Jesus Christ. pg 14

Women's Kindness And Caring

Not only was she the first in the many roles as stated above, including being given the name “Eve – the mother of ALL living,” she was the first to suffer loss, her son (Abel) murdered, first to have her son taken away from her (Cain).  Yet, there was hope, for unto her was given the first evangelistic vision, the coming Savior from the lineage of her womb. A Savior would be born into the world,  paving the way to reconciliation for all mankind. Indeed, she was remarkable!

~ First Lessons in Faith ~

Loss tears at the heart, and Eve certainly suffered many losses.  Just look at the list.  She had lost:

~ her perfect relationship with God (Genesis 3:8)

~ the bliss of sinless marriage (Genesis 3:12)

~ her lack of acquaintance with evil (Genesis 3:22)

~ her ideal home in the Garden of Eden

~ her son Abel

~ her son Cain (gone to a place of refuge) pg 16

Cain Slays Abel His Brother

Yet even through all the loss, the goodness of God shown through.  We can always hope in God! “Adam knew his wife again, and she bore a son and named him Seth, ‘For God has appointed another seed for me.” (Genesis 4:25)

The gift of Seth whose name means “appointed” surely refilled Eve’s empty heart and her equally empty barrel of hope.  Appointed by God, her Seth would not only bring hope to her sore heart, but he would be the one from whom God’s Son would come bringing bountiful and eternal hope to all mankind (See Luke 3:38) pg 16

Eve also was the mother of the first man, whose blood God considered righteous.  Was he one of the first prophets? The Bible does not say, but it does say in Matthew 23:

“Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city.”

“That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar.”

~ Matthew 23:34-35

Serving Elderly

~ Eve’s Message For Your Life Today ~

How do you handle your heartbreaking losses?  Rather than plunge into depression, discouragement, or hopelessness, place your God-given faith and confidence in these hope-filled realities:

God’s Faithfulness: “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.” (Jeremiah 29:11)

God’s Promises:  One of the over 8,000 promises in the Bible assures you that you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you. (Philippians 4:13)

God’s Goodness:  Your lack of hope can never negate God’s goodness.  (Psalms 30:5) For his anger endures but a moment; in his favor is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.” (Proverbs 30:5)

Just as Adam was a reflection of God’s glory, Eve was as well, in His image created He them.  We can be a reflection of God’s glory as God transforms our minds into His spiritual reflection:

Resolve never to make a habit of criticizing or downgrading yourself but instead

Rejoice in your worth in God and your likeness to Him

 Rejoice that you are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14)

Resolve to seek a deeper relationship with God and to

Rejoice that He is near to all who call upon Him (Psalm 145:18)

Resolve to walk by faith paths.  You may not understand and to

Rejoice in the promise of His nearness as He directs your way.

Resolve to live each day as a child of God through His son, Jesus Christ and to be a reflection of His glory, and

Rejoice that, as one of God’s chosen, your name is written in heaven. (Luke 10:20)!

Resolve to spend time communing with God on a daily basis through prayer and the study of His word, and

Rejoice in the strength that He gives, for each day and the hope that He offers for all your tomorrows!

Resolve to reflect His glory and, dear one,

Rejoice in His love. pg 18-19

I Would Love To Hear Your Comments

Chapter 2 – March 26

Mothering Monday: Guarding Our Time

This post is via my daughter Anna. I pray it will be an encouragement to you and your family. Get to know each other and build a strong personal foundation, an example to pass on to their families.

Where My Treasure Is

Time is what we want most, but what we use worst.

 ~ William Penn ~

Have you paused lately to take stock of how your family’s time is being spent?

We moms are the ones who usually bear most of the responsibility for our family’s schedule. We sign our children up for activities, make playdates, and schedule appointments. Many of us wield a significant amount of power in the management of our family’s time and it may be worth considering what we are doing with it.

Over the decade that I taught piano lessons, I had the privilege of getting to know a great many families. For many of these families, my piano studio was only one stop of many that were on the docket for the evening. While one parent would be with her child at my house (the two of them having just come from eating dinner at…

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Published in: on November 20, 2013 at 4:39 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Mission of Motherhood ~ Chapter 5: The Discipling Mother

The Mission of Motherhood

Welcome to my daughter’s Mothering book club, her weekly discussion of  The Mission of Motherhood: Touching Your Child’s Heart for Eternity.

Anna begins, “I hope that you are taking time each week to read through the chapter and let Sally’s insights sink deep down. After each chapter, I find myself inspired to take my role as a mother more seriously and prayerfully!

Let’s begin now with Chapter 5, The Discipling Mother…

“I had to chuckle at Sally’s description of a visit to the home of a “lovely, accomplished Christian friend”, in which she spent the entire time comparing her own children to those of her hostess. Her friend’s children had impeccable manners, wore nice clothes, were very accomplished and even had great haircuts! As the visit progressed, Sally found herself feeling worse and worse about her own mothering and by the time she left, she had a lengthy mental list of things she was going to “start working on” with her kids right away!

We’ve all been there, haven’t we?

I know that many times, I’ve felt that same pressure when I’ve been with families who seem more “with it” than our family.

As moms, one of our greatest desires is for our children to be happy. In many ways, that’s how we were designed – we have a strong drive to protect, nurture and comfort our children. We want to provide them with everything they need to be successful.

Yet, often times we allow the myriad of deafening voices out in the world to tell us what that success should look like, instead of letting God tell us what really matters.

Let’s go back and look at one of the passages of scripture in which God gives us a glimpse of what is important to Him:

“Let not a wise man boast of his wisdom, and let not the mighty man boast of his might, let not a rich man boast of his riches, but let him who boasts boast of this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the LORD who exercises lovingkindness, justice, and righteousness on earth; for I delight in these things,” declares the LORD. – Jeremiah 9:23-24

Isn’t it amazing that today, over 2,000 years later, people still seek success through these same three areas – the intellect; power and status; and riches?

What about us? Do we let ourselves get sucked into the world’s definition of success? Do we think that if only we can choose the right curriculum or get our children into the right school/college, they will have a great life? If only we can earn enough money to make our children “fit in” with their peers, then they will feel at peace? If our children would display wonderful manners, we could actually be a “good witness” to others?

Sally says:

The reality is that no matter how we try to control these external factors, each of us will fall short. No matter how we try to control life, we cannot make it behave. And pursuing only these worldly goals has a diminishing effect on us as mothers as well as on our children. Comparing ourselves to others and all they have will almost inevitably cause us to focus on the shortcomings of our families instead of progressing in truly important areas. (p. 83)

So, what is the most important thing to focus on?

The heart.

God does not look on the externals; He is most concerned about the state of the heart. Therefore, it makes sense that our primary job as parents is to focus on our children’s heart attitudes.

Sally offers four areas that we can focus on as we strive to reach our children’s hearts.

the heart 1

Our Time.

Jesus developed the hearts of His followers by spending time with them – instructing, advising them, and modeling right behavior. He spoke with them one-on-one and in small groups. He included them in His ministry and in His daily life.

Compare that with how we try to reach children’s hearts today. Often we value activity (busyness) over long-term personal relationships. Again, I think this stems from our desire as moms for the very best for our children. We don’t want them to miss out on anything!!

But as Sally says:

All of the going in the world will not make us or our children spiritually deep or alive. It is only by coming to the living God and developing intimacy with Him that we will really draw near in our hearts to Christ.

Signing up our children up for every “spiritual” activity or organization may or may not make any difference in them developing a heart for God. Giving them time with someone (that’s you!) who knows and loves God, however, will make a tremendous one.

Instruction

Intentional instruction in God’s Word is crucial to developing our children’s hearts for God. We cannot expect our children to know the truth or how to behave or how to think until they know what the Bible actually says.

There is no easy way around teaching Scripture. It takes dedication and time. No amount of “quality videos” or Bible-themed crafts can replace plain and simple instruction from the Word.

Although it may seem daunting, it can be done. In this chapter, Sally offers some practical suggestions on how to incorporate Biblical instruction into the day with young children by way of storytelling, memorization, and family devotions.

Training

Although at first glance it may seem like it, training and instruction are not the same thing.

Training is the practical application of a learned truth to actual life.

Training involves helping our children to form “pathways” of thought and action and often involves confrontation. Are we willing to risk the unpleasantness associated with training our children in the interest of their growth in righteousness?

There are various methods for training and discipline, but we must always remember to exercise our training with love and patience.

Sally mentions that one of the main tools they used in their family was to teach their children the Clarkson’s “24 Family Ways”. You may recall me mentioning a few months back that Dan and I have used the Clarkson’s Ways in our own family. Though it is not a formula for parenting, it has been a very useful tool for us to use as we try to train our children in the ways they should go.

Guarding

This might be the most controversial segment of Chapter 5, because people tend to be unbalanced one way or the other in regards to guarding their children’s influences. I believe that Sally offers a balanced approach to this topic when she says that young children need protection and guidance from outside forces that would threaten their future growth.

The thing is, there is no formula for exactly how to go about this, especially in this exceptionally perverse generation that we live in.  It is one of those areas where we have to take each and every step by faith coupled with lots of prayer.

Sally reminds us that while we work toward guarding our children from ungodly influences, we need to also give them access to positive influences and also opportunities to have compassion on others who live by different standards than we do.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Whew!

This chapter is a tall order! It’s almost overwhelming when I think about it.

And yet, I know that if I am following after God every hour, He will provide everything I need to raise my children. Because in reality, they are His children.

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If would like to visit my daughter’s blog page, you can find a treasure source of inspiration here at WhereMyTreasureIs.

Rescuing His Bride

Bride of Christ

God’s women are scattered around the world, but we have one desire, and that is to prepare to meet the Bridegroom when He returns to take us to the marriage supper. This is one of the aspects of the Feast of Trumpets along with Christ returning to reign as King of kings and Lord of lords.

Christ is coming and in a sense, rescuing His spiritual bride, the church. I’d like to speak concerning this not only to you younger women who have been blessed with a stable family and home, but also to all you ladies who are hurting, those of you who have been raped, battered, abandoned, and/or abused….and there are more than you think sitting next to you during weekly church services. These women often keep the secrets of their wounds hidden for fear of being judged. Oftentimes their abuser convinces these women that they were not good enough to deserve respect and deserve the punishment they are forced to endure, not worthy of anyone’s love, and that includes God’s. Yet, God in His mercy has clothed all His chosen people in linen white if they come before Him in true repentance. We are special and treasured by our betrothed, not belittled and made to feel ashamed. When we feel defeated, we need to hang on to those promises no matter who tries to convince us otherwise.

The church needs be a place of safety for those who are hurting, extending its hands to those women, and we can do our part by having a nonjudgmental ear. The church needs to be a safe place for them to talk of their hurts and confusion. I pray that all of our churches have a ministry to those women. If you are one of those women, perhaps you have mixed feelings concerning Christ’s return. What if we are not good enough? What if we are not worthy? While we need to consider these things as we prepare for Christ’s return, women who are still deeply wounded from their experiences perhaps feel overwhelmed by these feelings and no matter what they do, they feel unworthy to be invited to the wedding supper; but, they don’t need to be. We are all worthy of death, and without God’s grace, we would be standing alongside each other on death’s row. We thank God for His mercy for all of us and His loving kindnesses.

Most all of us have read the story of Cinderella, etc. and internally put ourselves in the place of these fictitious characters, being rescued by our prince charming. Sometimes those women who have been abused feel a great deal of comfort by these scenarios. After all, one  does not have to be perfect to be rescued. Unfortunately, these stories of fantasy don’t tell the real story.  It’s not a magical being whose powers they must depend upon.  In this world of secularism, the Bible is also looked upon as a myth, a story told and retold and does not hold any real truth to its origin. The truth is, however, that it is neither a myth nor magical, but accomplished with a perfect God, Who has chosen to to cleanse us to make our sins white as snow if we repent and trust in Him. God’s word is a sure foundation, speaking of our future with Christ, reigning as kings and priests under His rule.

We are to imitate Christ as we rule. Who is this King? Who is our real Prince we look forward to, to become His bride in His kingdom? Let’s look in scripture and find out the heart of our Betrothed Jesus Christ.

Psalms 34:18 “The LORD is near unto them that are of a broken heart; and saves such as be of a contrite spirit.”

Psalms 147:3 “He heals the broken in heart, and binds up their wounds.”

Revelation 21:4 “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.”

Isaiah 41:10 “Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.”

Psalms 55:22 “Cast thy burden upon the LORD, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.”

And Christ is the same today as He was yesterday, a God of all mercy.

Deuteronomy 10:18 “He doth execute the judgment of the fatherless and widow, and loves the stranger, in giving him food and raiment.”

Psalms 68:5 “A father of the fatherless, and a judge of the widows, is God in his holy habitation.”

Psalms 10:14 (NKJV) “But You have seen, for You observe trouble and grief, To repay [it] by Your hand. The helpless commits himself to You; You are the helper of the fatherless.”

Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.”

Hebrews 13:8 “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.”

Deuteronomy 31:6 “Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.”

In fact, the women who have gone through these experiences, those given the victory and comfort in Christ are in reality equipped to work a great work to render comfort and hope to those wounded who have experienced like pain and suffering in that soon coming World Tomorrow. At His return, they can play a vital role in showing the mercy and comfort He has given bestowed upon them, teaching others that God is a God of love and compassion, and teaching them their true worth that God bestows upon them, that being much greater than any man can give. We are so loved by Him, that He gave His own precious Son so that we could live forever. (John 3:16)

2 Corinthians 12:9 “And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”

Romans 8:28 “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”

If you are struggling with someone abusive, there are many places of safety. Please call your local hospital to gather those resources. You are not worthy of beating or any other abuse. Many times these women are beaten down so mentally and physically, just so that the perpetrator can gain the upper hand.

To all you women who have been abused in any way, I speak to you. God, is not like your abusers, but steps down from His throne to lift you up and set you in a safe place with His precious care and is looking forward to holding your hand personally and taking you to His wedding supper in His Kingdom that shall never end.

*If you are presently living in these situations, please take respite in shelters where you will be safe.  God does not want you to suffer from the hands of men, but wants you in a safe place, where you will be protected.  You are so precious to Him!

To learn more about Christ’s return and articles concerning abuse, see below for more information:

Christ’s Return

http://www.ucg.org/booklet/gods-holy-day-plan-promise-hope-all-mankind/feast-trumpets-turning-point-history/

Articles on Abuse

http://www.ucg.org/christian-living/abuse-take-action-your-life-may-depend-it/

http://www.ucg.org/christian-living/word-what-christians-need-know-about-sexual-abuse/

http://www.ucg.org/files/reprints/pdf/Abuse.pdf

Rescuing His Bride

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Published in: on September 6, 2013 at 10:28 am  Leave a Comment  

Mothering Monday: Teaching Respect for the Elderly

This is one of my daughter’s posts. We involved our children in many activities to help them learn the value of getting to know and serve the elderly.

It’s the very heart of God for us to visit the “fatherless and widows in their affliction,” for this is true religion.  To have the mind of God is a virtuous woman’s most prized endeavors.

James 1:27 “Religious observance which is pure and spotless in the eyes of God our Father is this–to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself uncontaminated by the world.”

Where My Treasure Is

iliana mary

“You shall rise before the gray-headed
and honor the presence of an old man,
and fear your God: I am the LORD” 

Leviticus 19:32

One of the legacies passed on to me by my parents was respect for elderly people. In today’s society where older people are often seen as irrelevant at best and useless at worst, it has become very important to me that I find a way to instill this same value into my own children. I’ve been reviewing in my mind the ways in which my parents taught us that old age was not something to disdain, but rather to honor. I’d like to share them here as a way of reminding myself of these practical ways so that I may cultivate this value in our family.

“Cease listening to instruction, my son,
And you will stray from the words of knowledge…”  

Proverbs 19:27

First, we were…

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Life without a smartphone

Where My Treasure Is

Razor phone 001      Razor phone 006

Here is the last {cool} phone that I owned. Yes, I used to be cutting edge.

Today, I am the proud owner of the most basic pre-paid TracFone available, which I keep in my van for emergencies. Although it is probably classified as a “dumb phone” (no camera or touchscreen), it is apparently still too smart for me. When I’ve handed it over to baby Emma to keep her busy when she’s gotten fussy in the van, she has (more than once!) dialed an emergency number while the keypad was locked. When they’ve called me back to see if I was dying or something, I’ve had a hard time convincing them that I cannot for the life of me figure out which button it was that she pushed! Of course, I’ve apologized profusely and assured them that it will never happen again. (If only I could find that button!)

The technology train has long since run me over and gone barreling on…

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Published in: on April 10, 2013 at 2:53 am  Leave a Comment  

Mothering Monday: Time To Play

I thought my daughter’s blog was full of wisdom in helping a child explore and be imaginative in their play, what all children need during their growing up years. Thank you Anna.

Where My Treasure Is

As the weather warms up and the frenzy of spring activities gets underway, please don’t neglect to give your children this very special gift ~ time to play!

(Re-posted from the archives)

This past weekend Dan and I were outside enjoying the beautiful day – he was working hard on a project and I was holding Grace. I could see our other children in various locations around the property, each involved in his or her own pursuits – running, climbing, jumping and digging. I was overcome for a moment and shared with Dan how thankful I am for the home that he has provided for me and the children. To see my children running free like the wind brings me so much joy and peace.

I believe there are so many benefits of giving children plenty of free play time as opposed to involving them in too many structured activities outside…

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Published in: on April 9, 2013 at 2:05 am  Leave a Comment