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8 Reasons the Word of God is Relevant in 2017

8 Reasons the Word of God is Relevant in 2017

A plumb line is a weight that is suspended by a string.  This is similar to a water level that helps someone doing construction determine if a board is perfectly level. These are standards by which we can measure something.  It is an objective look at something.  I can use a plumb line or a level to see if some particular object meets a particular standard.  This is particularly important when constructing a building.  If you don’t know if something is a water level you run the risk of an inferior construction.

The Word of God is our plumb line.  Amos 7:8 says “The Lord said to me ‘What do you see, Amos?” And I said, “A plumb line.” Then the Lord said, “Behold I am about to put a plumb line in the midst of My people Israel.  I will spare them no longer.

This plumb line of the Word of God is a gift that we can build healthy, whole lives upon.

With so many challenges to our families and children, it is good to know there are some things that can be leaned upon as a standard.  Certain things don’t change and that helps us to know how to conduct ourselves.  When the boundaries are fluid and subject to change, we don’t have a sense of stability.  Boarders, boundaries and fences are put in place to keep dangerous things out and keep that which is within those boundaries safe.

Stability provides security and it allows us to explore new things knowing that there are some things that do not need exploration.  Those are the things that have grave consequences and could cause harm.  A former of pastor of mine said that experience is not always the best teacher. That statement has stayed with me and allowed me to know that I do not want to experience certain things.  I can look to the experience of others that have made those mistakes before me or I can look to the Bible to gain instruction.

Money and Wealth

It may take work to increase wealth but it can be had.  It is not only money that we are talking about here.  Families that are strong and connected have immeasurable wealth.

Marriage

  • Ephesians 5:21  Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God. Wives,submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.  For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.  Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing. Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it.

Yep, this passage requires a lot more comment than what I am going to offer here.  There will be more.  Keep your eyes out.  Let me just point out here that there is sacrifice on both parts in the marriage covenant Click To Tweet and the husband has a great responsibility to his wife.  This passage connects that the love that a man is to show his wife is like the love that Jesus showed the church.  That love sent him to the cross. Much to think about when entering to the covenant of marriage.

Raising Children

  • Gen 18:19 For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.

The creator of the Universe, God, took note of Abraham’s character and saw that Abraham was going to teach his children about the one true and living God.  The Lord treasured this and entered into a covenant that impacts the entire world even to this day.  Fathers and mothers have a heavy responsibility to the children in their household.  This is where the young ones will learn of the Lord.  We must be about our Father’s business when it comes to our children.

Wisdom and Education

 

Business and Partnerships

  • Amos 3:3 Can two walk together, except they be agreed?  Pay attention to who you are entering into business partnerships with.  If there are some ethical issues that are negative, this will impact your reputation and success.

Friendships and Associations

  • Proverbs 22:24 Make no friendship with an angry man; and with a furious man thou shalt not go:  Have you ever noticed that when someone gets really angry they stop listening to the other person.
  • James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.  The ways of the world are often in direct opposition to the ways of God.

Peace

  • Romans 5:1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:
  • Isaiah 26:3 Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace,whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.

Self-Control

  • Galations 5:23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

There are many more than just 8 reasons and I am sure you could add scripture references to the ones listed here.  Leave a comment and let me know how the Bible has been relevant in your life.  I am plan on updating the list with your thoughts.  This may serve as an encouragement to those that feel that the Bible is outdated and irrelevant.  Help me share the Good News!

Be sure to join my newsletter for more engaging conversations.

 

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Healthy Families! Bad for Children! Read How You Can Help.

Healthy Families! Bad for Children! Read How You Can Help.

Healthy families are bad for children! I couldn’t believe it!

Reading to your children is unfair!

Providing a nurturing atmosphere is unfair to children!

I couldn’t believe my eyes as I read a Facebook post questioning the value of reading bedtime stories to children. This is what healthy families do!

Children benefit from healthy family interactions. Read to find out how important healthy families are to the health of our children. #Children #Family #families #HealthyFamilies.

Parents read to their children.

They talk with their children.

They play with their children.

I quickly shot a response to the Facebook post letting all those parents that might be confused about the benefits of reading to their children. My response made it crystal clear that reading to your children is a good thing.

Little did I know that the premise of the post was that families are unfair to children. My jaw dropped as I read the work of Adam Swift which acknowledged the benefits of families but also proposed that maybe we need to do away with families Click To Tweet.

Healthy families are unfair to children.

Swift was interested in understanding factors that contributed to people having access to opportunities. His research demonstrated that having a loving family nurtures and protects children.

He determined that this is unfair to those children that do not benefit from a loving family. Many of the responses that I read indicated that people understood that the idea that family life should not be supported was ridiculous.

The post originally popped up in my Facebook feed sometime in 2015.  I hadn’t given it much not thought until I saw it again in May of 2017.

I thought I should do a little research and make sure I wasn’t just reacting to some crazy story that was not true.  We know there are plenty of those floating around. Much to my dismay, the post was based on actual research done by a professor by Adam Swift Click To Tweet.

As noted earlier, he found that healthy families are unfair to children that do not have the benefit of a family life. It seemed logical to him that family activities, such reading bedtime stories to your child, or eating meals together are activities that nurture children.

Truly these are some of just a few things that he regarded as unfair to children that do not live in healthy families.

Families are good and should be nurtured and not done away with. If there is any confusion left.  Let me say it loud and clear.

Healthy families are good for children!

Healthy families are good!

Furthermore, reading to your children is a good thing! Go ahead, snuggle together and read!Reading to your children is a good thing! Go ahead, snuggle together and read! Click To Tweet

Participating in other activities within the family context is also good for children. So, to all of you mothers and fathers out there that are pouring into your children by playing with them, providing opportunities to participate in sports, ride bikes, have play dates with friends and any number of other things that happen in families, I say be encouraged and keep doing your part.

Let me give you some more indicators that families are good. Thankfully, we can look to the Word of God.

Gen 1:28 KJV And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.

Healthy families serve a specific purpose

Here we see that God had a plan and design for the family.  He is telling Adam and Eve to be fruitful and multiply.

He tells them to replenish the Earth. If we take a closer look at the word “replenish” we notice that there are some interesting synonyms for the word.  There are words like restore, renew, provision, furnish, provide.

The definition of the word is To make full or complete again, as by supplying what is lacking, used up, etc. In Psalm 68:6  God setteth the solitary in families.

The previous scriptures indicate that within the family, we have the opportunity to grow and learn, love and be loved, and create and tame.

We also learn that we are different with unique gifts and talents and we each have a specific call on our lives.  

In the family, we also see the concept of passing something of value down from one generation to the next. In addition, Gen. 18;19 makes it clear that family roles are important to the health of the family and in turn to society.

Gen 18:19 For I know him, he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.

Clearly, God had in mind that in the family unit, there would be instruction and correction.  God saw the character of Abraham and noted that he would be a man that would instruct and direct his children.

The scripture says that God knew Abraham would keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment.  Our children learn about justice and how to conduct themselves from their parents.

Healthy families help children.

Clearly, there are children that struggle in life for a variety of reasons.  This is where the Church and families step in and support those children and families.

I encourage you to not spend any time feeling guilty about being a part of a healthy family.  Adam Swift thinks that it is appropriate for you to feel guilty if you are nurturing your family.

I disagree.  That is misplaced guilt that will sap your energy.  Furthermore, carrying that burden will prevent you from reaching out the family that is need of your strength.

On the contrary, pour more love on your children.  Encourage them a little more.  Let’s not embrace this idea that families are unfair to children. Be strong, healthy and able to help other families in need.

Healthy families are good for society

The healthy loving family environment strengthens human beings. These strong, healthy individuals are the people that are going into our schools and in our courthouses as lawyers and judges.

They will impact government and business.

Healthy individuals will have character and integrity. These are important elements that we need.

What sense would it make to do away with an entity that strengthens our society and provides safety for future generations?  How would that be a good thing?

I don’t understand how making everybody come down to the lowest common denominator is a good thing.

The other thought from Swift is to have children take the driver’s seat in the family.

They would create the atmosphere and the protocol for the family and the parents would simply facilitate.   I would venture to say that this is one reason why we have “snowflakes” running around on college campuses now.

Well, I have done my duty. I have made it clear that families are good.  My children are grown and just about on their own so I can’t read them a bedtime story.

Let me see.

Where is my cat?


Let me know what some of your healthy family habits are.  What can you as a family unit do to help a child that is not part of a healthy family? Leave a comment below.

Key Habits That Make Life Run Smoothly

Key Habits That Make Life Run Smoothly

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Smooth Running 

Good habits make life run smoothly Click To Tweet. Charlotte Mason (1842-1923) talked about habits being the tracks that we can run our lives on.

Charlotte Mason was a British educator that Loved the Lord and loved children. She observed children and taught others how to nurture children and guide them to their destiny.  Her approach is used in many homeschools and some charter schools.


Her philosophy has not only impacted the education arena but has also impacted the home life of many families.

Habits Make Life Run Smoothly

Good habits lay the foundation for the character of a man later in life. What is a habit? How would you answer that question? I would say that a habit is something you do, on some level of frequency, without much thought. For example, I don’t give much thought to buckling my seat belt when I get into a car.

Do you?

I just reach for the seat-belt and fasten myself in while I am thinking about something else or talking with someone in the car. I don’t expend much mental energy at all in getting that task done.  It’s a good habit that keeps me safe.

Step by Step

What if I had to think about every step of brushing my teeth? Normally, when we brush our teeth, we think about a million other things. Or if you are like me, you are half asleep in the morning or falling asleep as you get ready for bed. 

It’s a good thing that brushing my teeth is a habit. We do not have to give much thought to the process. When we brush our teeth, we think about so many other things at the same time. 

It’s not uncommon for your mind to be engaged in something totally unrelated to brushing your teeth because it’s a habit. It is second nature to you. You’ve done it for a long time, right?

Think back to when you first started brushing your teeth.  Don’t worry. This will be a quick trip down memory lane.  When you were much younger you had to figure out how to hold the toothpaste tube just right. You thought about how to hold the tube. You figured out how NOT to squeeze too much toothpaste out. Then you start brushing your teeth. 

Did you ever push too far back and nearly choke yourself? Or maybe you were a little too aggressive and you scraped your gums. Oh yeah, someone had to watch you and make sure you were doing it the right way.  Thankfully, you learned how to brush your teeth so well that you didn’t have to spend hours going over each part of the process. We all have good habits and bad habits. Even though habits do not take much thought, they impact our lives greatly.  

If you have a good habit of washing the dinner dishes after you have eaten dinner then you have the wonderful delight of walking into a kitchen with a clean sink every morning.  (I’m still working on that one).

Good Habits Make Life Flow

Making up your bed every morning after you get out of it means you are going to have a neater looking room when you get ready for bed. Those habits make your life more pleasant and easier to manage.

What are some of your good habits that make life more pleasant and productive? Your habits can also take place in your head. Your thought life is an important part of your life that we all need to pay attention to. Good Habits make life run smoothly

Thought life

Recently, the Lord has been drawing my attention to my thought life.  He highlighted some negative thoughts I began entertaining. The thoughts centered around a loved one that has some habits that annoyed me.  I’m sure you can relate to the reality that those closest to us can irritate us the most.

I hear you mothers out there!  Oh, there are several dad hands up as well.  So, you can relate, good?

As I allowed the negative thoughts to bloom and grow in my head, the Lord arrested my attention and prompted me to think about what was happening.  I was allowing negativity to take a color my mood.  The color was very dark and unpleasant.

Those negative thoughts can creep in without our realizing it. There was nothing positive or productive coming from those thoughts.  In fact, I sensed frustration and agitation as the thoughts lingered.

Our Thoughts are Powerful

The alarming thing that occurred to me was that the person I was thinking about wasn’t even present.  I was getting annoyed and agitated by thoughts and the person was nowhere near. I promptly repented and asked the Lord to forgive me and help me with the thoughts.

He, in turn, had me bless the person I was thinking about. He reminded me that  “The weapons of my warfare are not carnal but they are mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds” (My paraphrase of 2 Cor 10:4).  Our Heavenly Father is a good father and will teach us good things.  He will help us form good habits.

Renewing the Mind is Powerful

The Lord also highlighted the importance of renewing my mind. Romans 12:2 tell us not to be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. Click To Tweet The enemy is relentless in his fight against us.  It takes an emersion into the Word of God to keep our thoughts healthy.

What Comes Next!

I am excited to see that long-term fruit comes as a result of taking unhealthy thoughts captive and allowing the Lord to purify them. The immediate benefit is that my attitude changed from being ugly to being more pleasant but I am sure there will be more benefits as I allow the Lord to help me tweak my habits.

 Establishing Habits Early

Parents have a wonderful opportunity to assist their children in developing good habits that will make the home a happy and peaceful place.  These habits will also help the child as they grow into adults.  As mentioned earlier the habits of the child are the character traits of the adult.

Habits of observation

Let’s take some time and look at Habits of Observation.

 Careful and close observation are key to narration.  Narration is a skill that Charlotte Mason stressed in helping children attend to something and then report on what they noticed. This is a habit and a skill that serves children and adults well.

We will discuss what observation is and how it can enhance life in different areas.

Observation is putting your mental energy on a particular thing and allowing yourself to experience what you are seeing or reading to the fullest extent.  Parents can encourage observation skills in many different ways.

Employ the senses

 Key Habits That Make Life Run Smoothly | rosemerryblash Read about how good habits can make life run more smoothly. Good habits make for peaceful days. #CharlotteMason #habits #peace

 

When doing nature studies, children can look at a tree and notice colors and textures.  They can further the observation experience as they touch the tree in different areas. Children can be directed to ask themselves questions about how the tree feels when they touch the trunk and how the leaves feel.

Smell is an important element of observation as well.  How does the trunk smell?  How about the leaves?  Children can note sounds they hear when they are observing a tree.  The leaves make a particular sound as the wind blows by.

As far as taste goes, you would not encourage a child to use this sense when observing outside.  This can be saved when you are inside preparing dinner.

Spices and sauces can be sampled.  Children will develop the ability notice different spices and how they change the taste of certain foods.  You may discover you have a budding chef on your hands as you explore different tastes.

Benefits of observation

Careful observation helps children store up pictures in the mind.  These memories can be recalled at any time and individuals can enjoy those memories even into their adult years.

Observation can help children take notice of the needs of someone else.  Children need to be aware of the needs of others. This helps the children focus on someone other than themselves.  Parents can guide children to notice the needs of others and assist where appropriate

Careful observation also causes individuals to be truly present with their family and friends. Many people are easily drawn in by phones and other electronic devices and miss connecting with people around them.

Connecting with the people that we love is important and makes life pleasant, rich and full.  The attachment to electronic devices creates an empty atmosphere that leaves people feeling lonely and detached.

Observation also enables us to focus more intently.  This applies to reading a book or listening to a sermon or lecture as well as to our children and family.

Academic excellence

This practice of focus and observation lays the foundation for improving academic performance. Click To Tweet

A student is able to pay close attention to what they are reading or listening to.  As attention is given to these platforms children and adults remember what has been said or read.  This will enable the person to receive the information or concepts shared.

They are able to use their power of thought and concentration to learn from what has been shared.  A child will learn to judge for him or herself whether or not what is being taught is true or not.

This skill is becoming more important as time progresses.  People have agendas and would like to skew information to promote a particular narrative.  Our children need to be able to recognize faulty thinking when they come upon it.

Children will also be able to pay close attention to directions given. This is important because often students breeze over directions and as a result, the work they produce is sometimes lacking in accuracy.  Furthermore, children will increase the stamina in their ability to read and write.  This will also translate to writing and composition skills.

 Crystal Wagner, at Triumphant Learning,  does an excellent job of further describing the benefits to developing Habits of Observation.  She also describes different activities that can be used to teach our children how to observe in different ways. Check out her post and take advantage of the resources she highlights.

 

What habits have you been working on?  How has the Lord helped you with those habits?  Leave a comment in the comment box and let me know.

 

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