I never thought it would be this difficult, did you? When you became a parent did you realize just how hard it was going to be? Most (if not all) would say a resounding, “No!” I know I would. Most importantly, did you know how hard it would be, not just to raise your children in God but also get them to Bible class and worship without losing your mind?
“It is just too hard.”
“My kid doesn’t even understand.”
“We will get them into Bible class when they get into the youth group.”
If we wait until they get into the youth group, we have waited too long.
God gave us these blessings to show them love, support, and how to put God as the highest priority! School is great and sports are fun too. However, when we as parents start putting those things first, we need to look inside ourselves and see if our priorities reflect the Bible’s guidance on the matter.
“Train up a child in the way he should go,
Even when he is old he will not depart from it.”
This scripture is powerful! Training up a child means making God the ultimate priority. If we place him in every part of our life, our kids will follow our lead! As parents, our kids want to be just like us, so we need to make sure we are showing Christ through ourselves first.
The world is already an imperfect, sinful place and it craves for us to be the light. Some in the older generation might say, “This world is going to pot,” or “These kids don’t have a chance.” These types of comments truly break my heart because my kids are growing up in this world. I refuse to believe that they have no chance but to live in a corrupt world!
If we let our kids grow up thinking there is no hope, not only will they feel discouraged but they will lose sight of what God needs them to be and that is THE LIGHT! I pray that we encourage them as much as possible to believe that they CAN make a difference! Bible class and worship reinforce hope in their lives. I witnessed my daughter sharing this hope with another child at my son’s t-ball game. It was the sweetest thing ever and I welled up in tears.
“Did you know that Jesus died on the cross for our sins?
She gets it! And it’s because she is part of the church.
Let’s encourage our entire family to be part of the church. Don’t wait to introduce them to God’s family until their formative years have passed.
A few ways to make life easier and enjoy going to Bible class and worship:
1. Take the kids to Bible class. This gives parents and children the opportunity to connect with the body of believers, and most importantly, they get to learn more about Jesus!
2. Rotate different toys and books. Each week in a small bag or backpack, bring something to worship that they haven’t had the chance to play with in a while.
3. Talk to your kids. Set expectations of how to act during worship before it begins.
- “We need to whisper.”
- “Stay seated on the pew.”
- “We need to pray, sing and listen.”
- “Worship is not about us, it is all about God. If we stay nice and quiet, more people will hear more about God”.
4. Bible class and worship are important. Make it a priority to worship and fellowship with the body of believers. It will become a routine, and worship will become second nature to our children.
This has been on my heart. I hope it is a great source of encouragement to you and plants the seed that Bible class and worship are a blessing. Most importantly, know that your church family doesn’t mind that your little one wiggles and giggles. They are glad you are there. May God bless you and your sweet families!
What are some ways you have found helpful in making Bible class & worship a priority?
What do you think when you think of a mom? The first thing that comes to my mind is love, and secondly, sacrifice, a sacrificial love.
Becoming a mother is the most instant kind of love you can have. It’s love at first sight, literally! At times you feel your heart will burst out of your chest because you have so much love. But being a mother is a complicated love. You have to discipline, make decisions that they may be upset by or not understand, save money for various things needed. There are many different levels to a mother’s love, but most importantly it is unconditional and knows NO BOUNDS!
I love this word because my own mother embodies it. She gives of herself, her time, and her finances to all of her children and their families without a moment of thinking of herself. I have been thankful and blessed beyond measure to have a mom who is the best example of this! She has shown and continues to show me not only what a mom should be, but most importantly how to be Christ-like in every way possible. When you are a Christian mother, so much more is expected of you. From the time your children are born, you must take your Christian responsibility much more seriously because you’re commanded to raise your children in the Lord.
“Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.”
Proverbs 22: 6
The Most Sacrificial Love
As Christians, we come face to face with Jesus who lived and died for us, the most sacrificial love. Thank God! He showed us that example so that we can always live for him and to be the best part of ourselves we can. When we live like Jesus, it demonstrates to our children that one day they can go out and continue to spread God’s love and His Word.
On this Mother’s Day, please let the moms in your life know how much you love them. Thank them for all the sacrifices they continue to make on a daily basis. Being a parent or a grandparent can be trying at times, but none of us would change it for the world. Remember to be an encouragement to others. Look to the Bible for numerous examples of Jesus on guidance, sacrifice, and unconditional love.
“The living, the living–they praise you, as I am doing today; parents tell their children about your faithfulness.”
Mothers are precious.
They are to be lifted up and daily shown love and encouragement for all they do. Learn from what they have shown you and remember who was the perfect example to embody sacrificial love: Jesus.
“A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man.”
1 Timothy 2:11-12
It is a humble word, but in years past the world has twisted the meaning into something negative and something to cause disruption in relationships. Why is this? Women’s rights? Equality? It could be attributed to many different things. I asked my husband what his definition of submission would be. His answer was, “Putting someone else’s desire or will in front of your own.” I love that the man I married–the man I committed my life to–understands that when I am submissive to him that I am putting his needs before my own. And likewise, he also puts my needs before his own.
I pray that you and your husband feel the same way. Being a submissive wife is a beautiful thing. I have never thought of it as negative but I have seen it misconstrued in many ways. As a Christian you are not only to be submissive to your husband but most importantly to God. He commands it. James 4:7 says “Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” Humbling yourself to our Lord–submitting to him–is putting your faith in Him and fleeing from evil.
There will be people who take advantage of this humbling act. Taking advantage of their role as head of the household instead of centering the marriage relationship on what God wants and demands of husbands. 1 Corinthians 7:3 says, “The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband.” We need to be proactive about this but moreover we need to trust our husband and have open communication to further strengthen the marriage. When your marriage is centered on Christ, you serve your husband, and, in turn, serve God’s purpose for a strong Christian marriage.
What Does Being Submissive Mean?
Does being submissive mean you don’t get a say? That what your husband says goes? Absolutely not! Ephesians 5:25 says, “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through word and present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any blemish, but holy and blameless.”
Praise God for the Word! Scripture tells us that husbands are to take their role VERY seriously and to be able “present her as a radiant church.” Being a submissive wife is a beautiful, humbling act. As wives, let’s be mindful that our husbands can be under pressure with having this charged to them by our Lord. Encourage your husband. Always let him know that you appreciate him in all that he does for you and your family. Practice being submissive daily and look to the Bible for encouragement and understanding in this matter.
May God bless you and your marriages. Be the wives that God wants you to be according to Ephesians 5:22:
“Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord.”
How can you be an encouragement to your husband?
So Many Choices Each Day
Every day we make choices: what to eat, where to go, and quite simply how to act. It is amazing when you think about it just how many decisions you make during one 24-hour period, but they can make or break you with each one.
About a year ago my husband and our two small children went to McDonald’s for lunch before a movie. While we were sitting there my sister called me with something important she needed to talk about. I was on the phone for a few minutes when I heard a lady start yelling at me:
“How about getting off the phone and take care of your kids!”
Mind you, my kids are not quiet but this was a time when they were actually being pleasant! I turned around and asked her politely, “What?” because I honestly thought I might have misunderstood her. She, along with three older women, kept yelling at me. I could not believe what I was hearing but I had this incredible urge to leave the establishment and say nothing to them.
I believe that was God guiding me to make the right decision and choose kindness.
Now believe me, I was fuming mad once I got out to the car! I almost got out of my car to go inside and really let them know what I thought but we chose to leave. After we got home, my heart was heavy. Not only that I was yelled at, but that a complete stranger thought it was ok to treat someone like that.
Choosing Kindness isn’t Easy
From that point on, I remember thinking how much harder it is to choose kindness rather than choosing to say whatever is on your mind. It is easy to let people know what you think; it takes strength and character to assess the situation and choose kindness. Does this mean you let people run over you? Absolutely not! You can always show kindness even when you are confronting someone who is harming you.
Jesus has numerous examples of dealing with difficult people and tough situations. One that sticks out is in John 8 when the Pharisees brought a woman who had committed adultery to Jesus and told him that the law said she should be stoned. Instead of being furious for the acts they were committing, singling this woman out, he started writing in the sand, stood up, and asked:
“Let anyone who is without sin cast the first stone.”
Of course no one could because all have sinned. Jesus told her he didn’t condemn her either. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”
I love how Jesus does everything in love and kindness. He had every right to be mad and let the Pharisees know exactly what he thought of their actions but he chose strength in being silent and making a statement in love. I am thankful that I have the Word to lean on rather than the world to show me how to be and how to act. Praise God for that!
A few things that help me remember to always choose kindness:
In any situation, please choose kindness.
It takes more strength to do and say what is right rather than wrong.
Live in God’s Word and not of this world.
The Church needs therapy. Sounds kind of harsh, right? That is not what this article is about. It’s about encouragement, meeting needs, and getting proactive.
What do you think when you hear someone is going to therapy? Marriage issues? Trauma? There are multiple things I can think of, but a lot of times therapy is perceived as negative and I believe there is a glaring reason. Because that’s how our world sees it and they are not all wrong. That is why I feel as a part of the Church that we need to have constant communication and “therapy” sessions to help guide and mold it for generations to come!
How do we do this? Here are a few ways that we can look at on how to help the Church to always be healthy and always working as a whole.
Who doesn’t need encouragement? But specifically, I want to focus on various ways to encourage and to also build church members to be constant encouragers. When we offer words of encouragement to the Church or non-church members it should always be genuine and you should always mean what you say.
How many times a day do you ask how someone is doing? Tons, right? Do you mean it and are you ready for when someone says “no” or “I am ok”? We always should be at the ready to meet those needs and be the light Jesus needs us to be. When you are happy, loving, and encouraging you never know who you will touch and just how much they may need it at that time. Substitute the negative for the positive!
2. Meeting Needs
Meeting needs can be done in various ways. Purchasing something for someone in front of you at the checkout line when they don’t have enough money. Babysitting free of charge so a young family can strengthen their marriage with a date night. Offering a kind word, smile and a friendly “hi”! Just being there is the most important thing we can do. Going through good and bad times it is always good to have someone there for you, no matter what.
3. Get Proactive
Get together and think of different ways to strengthen, build,, and unite the Church. Taking time out of our busy schedules to write cards, attend ladies’ bible classes, or the men’s prayer breakfast. Look inside yourself and see that God has given each of you talents that can help your community, friends, and the church family grow together. Anything to help motivate and encourage church and non-church members to be together as one and working on the common goal of helping all of God’s children get to heaven.
I love this idea because I take it to mean that Christians will help one another in anything they need and that they long to fellowship with one another and have a common goal to help anyone they can. Think of it as a marriage: if you do not have constant communication, time, and showing love then you will end up in therapy.
Let’s look at it a different way though. If we can have frequent “therapy” sessions as the Body, these sessions will be a positive way to navigate and help one another grow. Of course, we do not call them therapy sessions but “fellowship” with one another. Have meetings, luncheons, devotionals–whenever you can get together you should because we all have the same purpose for this life. To get to heaven and help as many others as we can get there too.
How can we help the Church grow together?