Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Under the Influence

A friend of mine began a line of thought entitled "Under the Influence". She was getting us to think what we were under the influence of. Most people think of people being under the influence of alcohol or drugs or the like. But in all actuality we are ALL under the influence of something. Some are under the influence of food, some type of entertainment (i.e. video games, sports, television, movies, music, etc.), we are ALL under the influence of ourselves (unfortunately).

It is funny that she began this discussion this week, as I had just made some changes in my "areas of influence". I felt impressed by God (after reading a blog post by Ann Voskamp at Holy Experience) that I needed to begin reading my Bible more, thus putting me under God's influence more. We feed our bodies at least three times a day and usually read God's Word once per day, if that. Jesus said that man does not live by bread alone, but by every Word that proceeds from the mouth of God. So, on Monday, we began reading the Bible after each meal. We read one chapter from Proverbs for breakfast, work on scripture memory and catechism and spend time in prayer. For lunch, we read 1-3 chapters in an Old Testament or New Testament book, again we work on scripture memory, catechism and prayer. For dinner, we read one chapter from one of the books of Wisdom (minus the book of Proverbs, since we are reading it for breakfast), we again work on scripture memory, catechism and prayer.

We also begin our school day with a time of Worship. We recite/read the Shema (Deuteronomy 6:4-9)-we read this as a reminder that it is my job, as a parent, to train my children in the Lord DAILY, ALL DAY LONG; the 10 Commandments-to remind us what God expects of us, Jesus said if you love me you will keep my commandments; and Ephesians 6:10-18 (the full armor of God)-we want to be prepared EVERY day to be strong in the Lord, so we must be fully equipped to do just that. We then sing a few hymns and do a Bible study. Throughout the rest of the day we play songs of praise and scripture verses put to music (when it the ladies are done with their book work).

So you see, we are attempting to put ourselves "Under the Influence" of God. What are you under the influence of?

Onward, Christian Soldiers

By Sabine Baring-Gould, 1864.

Read the words to this beautiful hymn. They are so powerful and full of promise. We  have read the end of the book and KNOW what the out come will be! Let us do our part to spread the gospel so God's family will grow and more will join us in our song of victory!

Onward, Christian soldiers! Marching as to war, with the cross of Jesus going on before. Christ, the royal Master, leads against the foe; forward into battle, ssee, His banners go!

At the sign of triumph Satan's host doth flee; on, then, Christian soldiers, on to victory! Hell's foundations quiver at the shout of praise; Christians, lift your voices, loud your anthems raise!

Like a mighty army moves the Church of God. Christians, we are treading where the saints have trod. We are not divided; all one body we: one in hope and doctrine, one in charity.

Crowns and thrones may perish, kingdoms rise and wane; but the Church of Jesus constant will remain. Gates of hell can never 'gainst that church prevail; we have Christ's own promise, which can never fail.

Onward, then, ye people! Join our happy throng; blend with ours your voices in the triumph song. Glory, laud, and honor unto Christ, the King: this thro' countless ages men and angels sing.


Here are a couple of GREAT quotes from Ann Voskamp's blog today. Go to Holy Experience to read the entire article.
"Parenting isn't so much about instructing people as it is about (an) invitation into (His) Presence."  "And we practice the hospitality of parenting -- inviting children into our presence and His."

Monday, August 23, 2010

Multitude Monday

holy experience

231. early morning times alone with God

232. new schedules

233. a new school year begun (although we school all year round, so school really never ends)

234. new routines

235. reading God’s Word as a family three times every day (thank you Ann, for sharing your story)

236. communication

237. answered prayers

238. a husband who won’t hesitate to ask me to pray for him

239. opportunities to share God’s love (it is an action you know, not so much a feeling)

240. the winding down of summer

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Our Entertainment

"I am concerned that our reading and our writing is gravitating to the lowest common denominator so completely that the great themes of majesty and nobility and felicity are made to seem trite, puny, pedestrian. . . . I am concerned about the state of the soul in the midst of all the cheap sensory overload going on today. You see, without what Alfred North Whitehead called “an habitual vision of greatness,” our soul will shrivel up and lose the capacity for beauty and mystery and transcendence. . . .

But it isn’t just the substance of what we say (or write or read or hear or see) that concerns me. It is the way we say it. To write pedantically about radiance or infinity or ubiquity stunts the mind and cramps the soul. To find the right word, to capture the perfect image, awakens the spirit and enlarges the soul. Mark Twain noted that the difference between the right word and the almost right world is like the difference between the lightning and a lightning bug. . . The ancient Hebrew prophets cared enough about their message that they frequently delivered it in poetic form. May new prophets arise in our day that will call us to faithful living in words that are crisp and clear and imaginative."---Richard Foster

Friday, August 20, 2010

Have You Fortified Your Walls

by Charles H. Spurgeon

"And they fortified Jerusalem unto the broad wall." Nehemiah 3:8

Cities well fortified have broad walls, and so had Jerusalem in her glory. The New Jerusalem must, in like manner, be surrounded and preserved by a broad wall of nonconformity to the world, and separation from its customs and spirit. The tendency of these days break down the holy barrier, and make the distinction between the church and the world merely nominal. Professors are no longer strict and Puritanical, questionable literature is read on all hands, frivolous pastimes are currently indulged, and a general laxity threatens to deprive the Lord's peculiar people of those sacred singularities which separate them from sinners. It will be an ill day for the church and the world when the proposed amalgamation shall be complete, and the sons of God and the daughters of men shall be as one: then shall another deluge of wrath be ushered in. Beloved reader, be it your aim in heart, in word, in dress, in action to maintain the broad wall, remembering that the friendship of this world is enmity against God.

The broad wall afforded a pleasant place of resort for the inhabitants of Jerusalem, from which they could command prospects of the surrounding bycountry. This reminds us of the Lord's exceeding broad commandments, in which we walk at liberty in communion with Jesus, overlooking the scenes of earth, and looking out towards the glories of heaven. Separated from the world, and denying ourselves all ungodliness and fleshly lusts, we are nevertheless not in prison, nor restricted within narrow bounds; nay, we walk at liberty, because we keep His precepts. Come, reader, this evening walk with God in His statutes. As friend met friend upon the city wall, so meet thou thy God in the way of holy prayer and meditation. The bulwarks of salvation thou hast a right to traverse, for thou art a freeman of the royal burgh, a citizen of the metropolis of the universe.
—Morning and Evening, originally published in 1896

Homo Unius Libri

I have thought I am a creature of a day, passing through life as an arrow through the air. I am a spirit come from God and returning to God; just hovering over the great gulf, till a few moments hence I am no more seen. I drop into an unchangeable eternity! I want to know one thing, the way to heaven—how to land safe on that happy shore. God himself has condescended to teach the way: for this very end he came from heaven. He hath written it down in a book. O give me that book! At any price give me the Book of God! I have it. Here is knowledge enough for me. Let me be homo unius libri [a man of one book].--John Wesley "Preface to Sermons on Several Occasions, 1746" The Works of John Wesley

Our Children are NOT Wards of the State

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Cheap Grace

"Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance, baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession, absolution without personal confession. Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate. . . . The only man who has the right to say that he is justified by grace alone is the man who has left all to follow Christ. . . . We . . . have gathered like eagles round the carcass of cheap grace, and there we have drunk of the poison which has killed the life of following Christ."--Deitrich Bonhoeffer in The Cost of Discipleship

Preparing Princes

by Nancy Campbell of Above Rubies

"Jehoiachin was eight years old when he became king, and he reigned three months and ten days in Jerusalem, and he did evil in the sight of the Lord."

2 Chronicles 36:9 NASB

We noticed in Preparing Princes, Part 2 that Josiah sought the Lord while he was still a youth. His son is now made king while a child, but the Bible says that he did that which was evil before the Lord. And yet he was only eight years old! Even at an early age children can follow after evil or follow after the Lord.

I am sure it depends on their training. This is why we must be faithful to fill our children with God's living Word even while they are small. Satan is out to get our children and he will try even when they are young. I remember at nine years of age wanting to ask Jesus Christ into my life. I struggled. I felt the power of the enemy holding me back. It was a spiritual battle.

My daughter, Evangeline experienced the same thing when she gave her life to Jesus as a young child. Evangeline shares her testimony: God saved me at four years of age. Even today, it is still the most vivid and powerful experience of my life. I was lying in bed. I still remember the orange bedspread cover. My mother came into my room and said, "Stephen (my twin) has just asked Jesus to come into his life. Would you like to also?" At that moment the world stopped and the fight between the powers of darkness and heaven began. My whole body was shaking. With all my heart I wanted to ask Jesus into my life, but the pull from Satan was so strong. "No, no, no..." the voice of Satan pulled at my heart. The struggle was powerful.

Eventually I said, "Yes" with all my heart. I followed my mother in prayer asking Jesus to come into my life. At that moment I knew God. I experienced the reality of God. He came into my life and filled me. He opened my mind to Him. I was saved for life - no turning back! I have known His powerful presence in my life ever since. Instantly I felt peace. Instantly I was not afraid of the big owl outside my room - or of anything. I have never been afraid of anything from that day.

Satan wants the minds and hearts of our young children. That is why we must be diligent to train them from a very young age. We want them for God, not for the devil's kingdom. This makes me wonder why God-fearing parents allow their children to go into the public school system to be subtly indoctrinated with humanism, socialism and progressivism. It is there they are trained to think like socialists and become more and more conformed to this spirit of this world.

Psalm 1:1 says, "Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night." Many of our children, especially at college, sit under professors who scorn the Bible and the ways of God. God's blessing is on those who do not sit in the seat of the scornful and the counsel of the ungodly. Just imagine if every God-fearing parent took their children out of "the counsel of the ungodly" and brought them home to teach them in the ways of God! We would have a revolution in the country. And we certainly need one!

Back in the days of Israel when they were training princes and mighty men to fight for their country, they didn't train ones and twos; they trained thousands of them. Look at some of the numbers that came to help David to make him king in 1 Chronicles 12.

"The children of Judah... ready armed to the war." ... ... ... 6,800

"The children of Simeon, mighty men of valor for the war." 7,100

"The children of Zebulun, such as went forth to battle, expert in war, which could keep rank; they were not of double heart." ... ... ... 50,000

"The children of Dan, expert in war." ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 28,000

The children of Asher, expert in war." ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 40,000

As I read through the Word of God I don't see any commandments to send our children to God-hating colleges where they are brainwashed to think like humanists. Instead, I see God wanting to pour out His Holy Spirit upon them. Acts 2:17-18 says, "And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters hall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams: and on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy."

Do you want your children and teens to be worldly humanistic thinkers or do you want them to be filled with the Holy Spirit, boldly speaking forth God's truth in this deceived world. This won't happen unless they are in an environment for God to pour His Spirit upon them. That environment is not in a godless education system. Who do you think has the best idea? God? Or man with his own ideas?


Above Rubies,


"Oh God, please help me to raise my children in an environment where you can fill them with your Holy Spirit and prepare them to be mouthpieces for you in the land. Amen."


I'm taking God's side rather than man's!

The Essence of Evil

by John Piper, from his book "When I Don't Desire God", page 33-34

"God defines evil this way when he says, “My people have committed two evils: they have forsaken me, the fountain of living waters, and hewed out cisterns for themselves, broken cisterns that can hold no water” (Jer. 2:13). God pictures himself as a mountain spring of clean, cool, life-giving water. The way to glorify a fountain like this is to enjoy the water, and praise the water, and keep coming back to the water, and point other people to the water, and get strength for love from the water, and never, never, never prefer any drink in the world over this water. That makes the spring look valuable. That is how we glorify God, the fountain of living water.

But in Jeremiah’s day people tasted the fountain of God’s grace and did not like it. So they gave their energies to finding better water, more satisfying water. Not only did God call this effort futile (“broken cisterns that can hold no water”), but he called it evil: “My people have committed two evils.” They put God’s perfections to the tongue of their souls and disliked what they tasted; then they turned and craved the suicidal cisterns of the world. That double insult to God is the essence of what evil is.

So preferring the pleasures of money or power or fame or sex over the “pleasures . . . at [God’s] right hand” (Ps. 16:11) is not like preferring caramel to hot fudge. It is a great evil. Indeed it is the ultimate meaning of evil. Esteeming God less than anything is the essence of evil."

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


“The world takes us to a silver screen on which flickering images of passion and romance play, and as we watch, the world says, ‘This is love.' God takes us to the foot of a tree on which a naked and bloodied man hangs and says,
This is love.’” -Joshua Harris

Doing What Comes Unnaturally

"Denying the flesh. Preferring others. Dying to self. Sounds dour and grim, doesn’t it? But we have it so backwards! “What’s in it for me?” “What will I get out of it?” “I deserve more.” These are common attitudes of the world—but Christians are supposed to walk in truth. And the truth is, without Christ, all any of us “deserve” is hell (John 3:18). We would do well to remember that. If the King of kings suffered a humiliating death on a cross for the likes of me, how can I dare live like I “deserve better?"

Read the entire article by Stacy McDonald at Your Sacred Calling.

God's Sanctuary

—Morning and Evening by Charles H. Spurgeon, originally published in 1896

"Strangers are come into the sanctuaries of the Lord's house." Jeremiah 51:51

In this account the faces of the Lord's people were covered with shame, for it was a terrible thing that men should intrude into the Holy Place reserved for the priests alone. Everywhere about us we see like cause for sorrow. How many ungodly men are now educating with the view of entering into the ministry! What a crying sin is that solemn lie by which our whole population is nominally comprehended in a National Church! How fearful it is that ordinances should be pressed upon the unconverted, and that among the more enlightened churches of our land there should be such laxity of discipline. If the thousands who will read this portion shall all take this matter before the Lord Jesus this day, He will interfere and avert the evil which else will come upon His Church. To adulterate the Church is to pollute a well, to pour water upon fire, to sow a fertile field with stones. May we all have grace to maintain in our own proper way the purity of the Church, as being an assembly of believers, and not a nation, an unsaved community of unconverted men.

Our zeal must, however, begin at home. Let us examine ourselves as to our right to eat at the Lord's table. Let us see to it that we have on our wedding garment, lest we ourselves be intruders in the Lord's sanctuaries. Many are called, but few are chosen; the way is narrow, and the gate is strait. O for grace to come to Jesus aright, with the faith of God's elect. He who smote Uzzah for touching the ark is very jealous of His two ordinances; as a true believer I may approach them freely, as an alien I must not touch them lest I die. Heartsearching is the duty of all who are baptized or come to the Lord's table. "Search me, O God, and know my way, try me and know my heart."

Monday, August 16, 2010

Multitude Monday

holy experience

221. second planting of onions, carrots and spinach

222. HOT summer days

223. contemplating beginning school again

224. homeschooling for most of the past 25 years

225. the writings of Josephus

226. a cool breeze off of the Sound

227. the ability to change recipes and have them turn out GOOD

228. waiting on God

229. living out Love

230. songs that draw to worship God

Thursday, August 12, 2010


Here are some verses that I looked up this morning from the Bible. We must truly take God's Word seriously. We MUST pursue peace with our fellow man and holiness in our lives IF we want to see God. Hebrews says we won't see God without being holy. How many people do you know who live holy lives?
The gate is narrow we are to enter into heaven by and few will actually get there. There will be many that claim the name of Jesus, they think just because they said a prayer once that they are "IN", but many will hear from Him, depart from me I never knew you, because they did not pursue a holy life, they continued in their worldly, sinful, selfish life.
Pray and seek God's Word. Don't take anyone's word, just God's Word, for how to live your life.

 “Pursue peace with all men and the sanctification (holiness) without which no one will see the Lord.” Hebrews 12:14

 “Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” 
2 Corinthians 7:1

 “And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love to one another and to all, just as we do to you, so that He may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all His saints.” 1 Thessalonians 3:12-13

 “This I say, therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you should no longer walk as the rest of the Gentiles walk, in the futility of their mind, having their understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart; who, being past feeling, have given themselves over to lewdness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.
But you have not so learned Christ, if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.” Ephesians 4:17-24

 “Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it."For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.” Matthew 7:13-14

  “Many will say to Me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?' "And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.'” Matthew 7:22-23

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

One Parenting Habit That Changes Everything

by Ann Voskamp

"The food served on plates is but a a corpse, the dead food, and when we partake of it, we eat of the dying world. But when we eat Scripture, we eat the only real food, for Christ is Living Bread and eating He who sustains all things, sustains body and soul. When we eat His Words, we eat of the eternal world."

"Man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by everything that proceeds out of the mouth of the LORD." ~ Deutoronomy. 8:3
Read the entire article at A Holy Experience.


"Saviour, Saviour, hear my humble cry. While on others thou art calling, do not pass me by."  

Words I heard being sung by my daughter as she was doing her ironing. What a beautiful thing to sing while she is working.

Thank you, God for the tender heart of my daughter and the beautiful lyrics to that hymn.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

30 Years!!!

Engagement photo 1980

My Mom and Dad recently celebrated their 30th anniversary.

They are my examples of what a godly marriage is supposed to be like.

When my parents went to a pastor to see if he would do the wedding service he said no, because they had 3 strikes against them:
1.They were too young in his eyes. She was 18 and he was 22.
2.They were raised in different religions, he was raised catholic, and she protestant.
3.Both of their parents were divorced.

They eventually found someone else to marry them. When my parents decided to get married they decided that they would NOT divorce. They have been faithful to that decision since the day they became husband and wife!

“For this reason a man shall leave his Father and his Mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.” Genesis 2:24

"Mamas Don't Let Your Babies Grow up to Be Cry-boys"

Here is an excerpt from a great article from "The Male Domain". Check it out. Go to "The Male Domain" to read the article in its entirety.
So, what shouldn't boys be allowed to cry over? Here's just a few things I've seen them cry over in my 17 years of parenting:
  • Losing at a board game. (If you can't take losing, don't play baby.)
  • Losing at video games. (Ditto)
  • Being given chores. (If a man doesn't work, he shouldn't eat. God made men to work.)
  • When he doesn't get his way. (This is life, get use to it.)
  • When someone calls him a name. (Your identity is in Christ, be secure in that.)
  • When work is too hard. (If you need help, ask, don't cry.)
  • Because they think someone doesn't like them. (If mom and dad do, that's enough.)
  • When his feelings are hurt. (Think about Jesus.)
  • When his brothers use "his" stuff, that mom and dad bought. (It's good to share.)
  • When he thinks others are being treated better. (They might be, parents are sinners.)

Monday, August 9, 2010

Multitude Monday

holy experience

211. the beginning of the next 30 years of marriage

212. strange summer days (feels more like spring or fall)

213. an orderly home

214. glimpses of God at work in our children

215. opportunities to minister with my husband

216. a family that works diligently together

217. seeing God work miracles in the life of a friend’s family

218. a peaceful walk with my husband along the water front

219. LOTS of lettuce still from the garden

220. the ability to plant seeds (for food and spiritually)

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Why Housewives Will Save the World

Patrice Lewis has written another marvelous article for World Net Daily.

"A housewife takes her marital vows seriously and does whatever it takes to make her husband feel like a man by giving him respect, dedication, love, faithfulness, a warm home and happy children. Housewives don't (or shouldn't) speak disparagingly of their husbands. We praise them. Praised men are happy men."

  Read the entire article here.

Thursday, August 5, 2010


"As a very little dust will disorder a clock, and the least sand will obscure our sight, so the least grain of sin which is upon the heart will hinder its right motion towards God." (chapter 25)
—A Plain Account of Christian Perfection by John Wesley

Monday, August 2, 2010

We Don’t Love Children, We Love Drywall

by Kelly Crawford, LAF
My brother and his wife just announced that they were expecting their third baby.  (Welcome to the world of “the large family”, bro!)

Someone asked about our parents’ reaction to the news.
“Oh, they’re very excited!”

To which the (Christian) someone responded,
They have 50 grandchildren and they’re still excited?!” (That was sarcasm, by the way; they have 14.)

We know the reality behind the joke–“more is only better if you really value the thing multiplying in your life“.  Money, accolades, vacations–we can’t get enough.  Cavities?  No more, thank you.

We say we love children, but we don’t put our money where our mouth is.

How do  you afford all those children?” Is that question an attempt to relieve the conscience?  Or do we really dislike multiplication so much we want to make the parents feel guilty? All the while, we’re borrowing money for bigger houses and get high fives for that.  As Kevin Swanson says:  “We LOVE drywall!”
“The very analogy of Christian marriage is to demonstrate fruitfulness just as we expect the church to multiply and fill the earth.  How can we wish for our churches to grow and our families to shrink?”
I’m not talking here of splitting hairs over when and if it’s ever OK to prevent children; we’re way beyond that.  I’m asking, “do we share the heart of God about children or don’t we”? Do we echo what Scripture says about a growing family?  We’ve got to ‘fess up to the idea that generally speaking, Christians do not act like they believe in the blessing of children, nor do they act like they believe that God is the author of life.  Because once we do, it changes what we say and how we live.

If we value life over material things (to which any Christian would attest), why don’t we live like it?  Or talk like it?  After all, we don’t call ourselves “pro-some-lives Christians”.
“Honey! We’ve got to do something!  Our watermelons are growing prolifically–I mean there’s like 15 or 20 of them!  What will the neighbors say? “
Isn’t it reasonable to assume that we try to accumulate more of what we value?

Conversely, it’s reasonable to assume that we try to avoid things that we don’t value, or that cause us pain. That’s why we take medication to get rid of headaches and have surgeries to alleviate unwanted ailments.

We want bigger tvs, more square footage, more cars, more vacations, more money, more free time.  We will do anything for it. Work longer, harder, borrow money that isn’t ours, sacrifice relationships, even when it directly opposes the wisdom of Scripture.

Keep your life free from the love of money, and be content with what you have.” Hebrews 13:5

We tend to ignore a lot of what the Bible says.

“Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house; your children will be like olive shoots around your table.”

If Christians believed this, what would their response to a large family really be?

Comment after comment reveals our abhorrence of multiplying children, despite what the Bible teaches to the contrary.  We love one or two; After that, they decrease in value. And not just for our own families.  We abhor it in other families. I know.  I’ve seen their faces too many times.  I’ve heard people take the Lord’s name in vain upon hearing how many children I had. I’ve seen them look at my other children with sympathy–my children who ask almost daily, “When are we going to have another baby?” I’ve heard them question how we’ll feed them, as if they’ve never read Matthew 6.  These are Christians!  They all want to know if I know how to stop *it*….that “horrid multiplying of those things we don’t want more of”.

(No, it’s not just a personal choice or an issue of neutrality; what we believe about children and the womb has profound implications for a society, and those who don’t conform to the “new standard” feel that lack of neutrality like no one else.  It may be easy to believe that people think of birth control as a personal choice if you’re on the “controlling” end.  But those of us who aren’t know better.)

Since the Bible compares the fruitfulness of the womb to vegetation, why don’t we apply our logic there: “Honey! We’ve got to do something!  Our watermelons are growing prolifically–I mean there’s like 15 or 20 of them!  What will the neighbors say? ” (Hey, don’t you know what causes that?)

And to think, we talk thus of eternal, immortal souls–not watermelons–that God has graciously given from His hand to populate His Kingdom for His glory.

We don’t turn visitors away from our churches. Is it because we are really concerned with more souls in the Kingdom?  Because if that IS our main concern, there should be nothing more glorious to a saint’s ears than to hear that a Christian family has received another child to bring up for His glory–a treasure stored up for Heaven!

Is not a family the basic building block of a church?  The very analogy of Christian marriage is to demonstrate fruitfulness just as we expect the church to multiply and fill the earth.  How can we wish for our churches to grow and our families to shrink?  It’s illogical.

Yet we find every reason under the sun to avoid growing disciples in our homes–and to help others avoid it as well.  Shame tactics, scare tactics, insults, “advice” about being responsible ensure that the average Christian family will cut off the godly heritage before it’s “out of control”….hmmm…sounds like the work of an enemy to me.

As I’ve suggested many times before, the burden of proof shouldn’t lie upon those who receive their children.

Excited about another child or grandchild?

“Like arrows in the  hands of a warrior…”

A Kingdom-minded Christian is!

Preparing Princes

by Nancy Campbell, Above Rubies

"Josiah took away all the abominations out of all the countries that pertained to the children of Israel, and made all that were present in Israel... to serve the Lord their God. And all his days they departed not from following the Lord, the God of their fathers." 2 Chronicles 34:33

While Josiah reigned as king of Israel, the whole nation of Judah did not depart from following the Lord. What a marvelous testimony for the leader of the nation. This was not the testimony of an older experienced man, but of a young man.

2 Chronicles 34:2-3 tells us, "He did right in the sight of the Lord, and walked in the ways of his father David and did not turn aside to the right or to the left. For in the eighth year of his reign while he was still a youth, he began to seek the God of his father." Josiah was only 16 years old when he began to seek the Lord with all his heart. This is the most opportune time for young people to seek God--the time when they are filled with energy, passion and vision. The greatest way they can exert this energy is toward God and His kingdom.

How do we get our young people to seek God? We can't make them do it. No law can make them do it. It has to come from their heart. Therefore, how can we influence their hearts?
1.    Inspire them to a life of serving God and others. Encourage them to get involved with missions and helping the needy. A selfish mentality where everything revolves around "me" is a destructive attitude.
2.    Make sure they are raised on the Word of God. The best way is to have Family Devotions together every morning and every evening.  The Word of God has power to change their lives and draw them closer to the Lord. Give God opportunity to work in their hearts by the daily filling of His Living Word. Make sure this is not done in legality, but with vitality, asking questions and promoting discussion.
3.    Make sure that prayer is second nature to them. This will happen as they pray out loud each day at Family Devotions. Encourage them to have their own daily "Quiet Time."
4.    Train them in character. Don't allow petty attitudes and self-pity trips. Don't allow grumbling and complaining. Prepare them to be able to face all situations in life, to minister equally to the poor and to the rich. They cannot become princes and princesses without training. Everyone born of royalty is consistently, systematically and extensively trained for kingship and queenship. They will not live like children of the King of kings without our faithful training.
5.    Pray for them. Our greatest weapon is prayer. When we pray, the Holy Spirit will work in their lives in answer to our earnest and fervent prayers. Prayer was our greatest weapon as we raised our teenagers.
It saddens me to see so many so-called "Christian" young people today who are taken up with the worldly pursuits of this life. Instead of seeking God and shining with the glory of God, they are more interested in looking at guys, talking immaturely with their friends, chewing gum* and dressing immodestly. "Cleavage" seems to be "in" in the church today, with adult women as well as teenage girls. Where is the example for our youth?  I hardly know where to look when I am amongst church people. What about young guys and men who must be tempted to lust. Do young ladies and women not realize that this relegates them to the "common" instead of belonging to royalty--princes and princesses of the King of kings?

It's time to earnestly cry out to God for our young people. Pray they will not be interested in living the status quo life of the other young people around them, but who, like Caleb, will have a different spirit than everyone else. I love the description of Caleb in Numbers 14:24, "But my servant Caleb, because he had another spirit with him, and hath followed me fully him will I bring into the land... and his seed shall possess it."

When young people become filled with the zeal of God they can change a nation. That's what Josiah did. 2 Chronicles 34:3 continues, "And in the twelfth year he began to purge Judah and Jerusalem..." Josiah was now 20 years of age, still a young man. At this age he began to clean up the nation. He rose up in boldness to expose the works of darkness. He was not only concerned about the evil, but he did something about it. He purged the land of evil, tore down the altars of Baal, chopped down the incense altars, broke them in pieces, ground them to powder and scattered them. He burned the bones of the priests of Baal and tore down the Asherim altars and beat them to powder. This was radical stuff! There was no half-heartedness here but absolute passion and zeal for the Lord. Let's pray for a nation of young people with this passion.

In the last devotion we talked about Psalm 45:16, "Instead of thy fathers shall be thy children, whom thou mayest make princes in all the earth." Do you notice that we are training princes for all the earth? We are getting them ready to go out into the nation and into the countries of the world to take the gospel; to rise up against evil and deception and do something about it! These young people are not the "ordinary" who try to fit in with the "in" crowd. No, they are princes and princesses, living like royalty as they truly represent the King of kings.

* Please, don't get too upset with me. Of course, there is nothing biblically wrong with chewing gum. However, I personally feel that it is not dignified as a subject of the King of kings. Plus, I think it is rather rude to talk to people while chewing. (I agree with Nancy. --Lanita)

Above Rubies,

"Father, please help me to prepare children who will seek after you with all their hearts and be zealous for God. Amen."

I will not give up my vision of training children who will stand strong against evil and take action against it!

Multitude Monday

holy experience

201. 30 years of marriage

202. a wonderful husband who still loves me after 30 years

203. a loving God who gives us a beautiful picture of marriage in His Word

204. remembering those hard times and being thankful that we never gave up

205. 30 years and 13 different homes (so far)

206. 30 years and 5 different states (so far)

207. 30 years and 4 children (dare I day, so far:)

208. the days get sweeter each year

209. learning to love more and more each year(it doesn't seem possible, but it is)

210. looking forward to the next 30 years