Friday, January 28, 2011

Wanna Be Great?

So you want to be great? You want to be first? Sure you do, I do, my kids do. We all want significance and we'd like to be first in line to get it please.

I find it amazing that when the disciples argued about this desire for greatness our Lord didnt rebuke them or correct that desire in them, rather He told them how to go about it. Called all 12 of them together for a mandatory How to Be Great Meeting, because like I said, it seems we all want to be great...all 12 of 'em needed to hear Jesus on this subject.

Jesus didnt tell his disciples that their desire to be great was wrong He just explained that in Gods economy the first shall be last and if you want to be great you have to serve. Beautiful huh? Clear instructions from the Lord himself on how to be great. Really great. Significant and worth something.

Now doesnt this help remove the guilt for feeling like our need for significance is a sin, and it removes the pressure to elevate ourselves through worldly measures, because honestly there are plenty of openings for servant positions. Get in line...the last of the line. ;-)

33 Jesus asked them....“What were you arguing about on the road?” 34 But they kept quiet because on the way they had argued about who was the greatest. 35 Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all.”

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Outside Influences

Heres a quote about socializing our children by L E Krueger, from her book Raising Godly Tomatoes...

"Removing the TV and choosing to homeschool are two of the most obvious and effective solutions to the problem of wrong influences, but beyond those, one of the most enjoyable and simple things you can do to produce godly, loving children, is to keep them doing more things with you and fewer things with other children outside of your family. If you keep them with you and teach them all you know about godliness, AND you keep them away from wrong influences when they are young, you will scarcely have to worry about anything else. You will eliminate a myriad of problems that result from allowing or encouraging your children to frequently socialize with other children.

If anyone doubts how much good this can do, just read carefully the many desperate stories of Christian mothers whose children are straying, and pay strict attention to how much the matter of "outside influences" factored into the problems they are having. If you are honest in your assessment, you will find that a vast number of these problems are the direct result of the influence of "friends" outside the family. This is where your children will learn values other than yours. This is where your children will pick up attitudes that are anti-family and anti-authority. This is where your children will be exposed to many things you never wanted them to be have anything to do with. This is where they will lose their loyalty toward you and God and turn their loyalty toward the world. If you want to raise your children to choose the Lord as their God, you must reject the world's unrelenting chant that your children "need" to socialize outside your home. Instead, you must believe the Lord when He says, "Therefore, come out from their midst and be separate."

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior

Just read this fascinating article Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior . I dont agree with all of it and certainly dont admire the Chinese Mothers motives which are based on pride and selfish ambition but I do agree with some of the techniques and reasoning behind what makes a Chinese Mother Superior. Heres the portion that really stood out to me...

"Sucess often require fortitude on the part of the parents because the child will resist; things are always hardest at the beginning, which is where Western parents tend to give up. But if done properly, the Chinese strategy produces a virtuous circle. Tenacious practice, practice, practice is crucial for excellence; rote repetition is underrated in America... "

I think this paragraph holds the key, pushing past the initial challenges until the challenge becomes our childrens character.

I think the secret to success or failure in parenting lies in our willingness to invest huge amounts of time and energy initially in order to enjoy fruit later. Training, disciplining, teaching at home, ...all take alot of time initially.

For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. Hebrew 12:11

I think the Chasten your son while there is hope...scripture points to this theory. We have a limited window of oppurtunity to train and correct our children, just a set amount of time while there is hope. If we are lazy and not diligent during those crucial training years then there really isnt much hope that we can or ever will influence our children. Chinese moms dont waste that time, their motives are often selfish and perhaps even a bit evil but still the law of the harvest is a law God has ordained, it plant, water sow reap. For Chinese moms its a harvest of academic excellence, but I think we could certainly apply these principals to training little hearts for God.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Passive Christianity?

I love it when I feel Jesus teaching me, I know He is always teaching me and the times when I dont feel Him are sometimes His most teachable moments, but isnt it nice when we can hear, see and feel Him?

I feel Him teaching me that living for God is not passive, cant be. We cant say a prayer of repentance and move on, repentance needs a plan. Wisdom is something to be desired but a simple prayer for wisdom wont produce it. In regards to obtaining wisdom the Word makes it clear that we are to diligently seek wisdom....Proverbs 2 tells us to do these thing in order to obtain wisdom.

  • accept
  • store up
  • turn your ear
  • apply your heart
  • call out
  • cry aloud
  • search for it as silver
Christianity cant be passive, its impossible for His Spirit to sit stagnant. He ever liveth.

Ephesians 4:14,15 - Be no longer children, but grow up in Christ.

2 Peter 3:18 - but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

2 Thessalonians 1:3 - The Thessalonians grew exceedingly in faith.

Philippians 1:9 - Paul prayed for their love to abound more and more.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Forgive Our Debts AS We Forgive

Forgive our debts, as we also forgive our debtors... Matthew 6:12.

I am constantly in need of forgiveness, I need the Lord to replace my nature with His Spirit. This scripture tells me that my sins will be forgiven in direct proportion to how I have forgiven others. As. One word. So significant. Also significant to me is the fact that this prayer about forgiveness is supposed to be prayed It helps me to know that Christ knew I would *daily* struggle with this forgiveness thing. No becoming discouraged, Christ makes provisions doesnt He?

For if you forgive others their sins, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others, your Father will not forgive you your sins" Matthew 6:14-15