Category Archives: Family
As a parent that is deeply committee to imparting my faith to my children, I am always looking for resources to help. I am often overwhelmed by the task of sharing my faith with my kids, teaching them, and training them. I fail daily and need the wise counsel of those who have gone before me.
With that in mind, the following list is some helpful resources for everything from praying for your kids to taking them to church. There’s insight on answering kids’ biblical questions and tips for raising Godly kids. And, at the end is a list of books and other resources that can provide further support in your task as a parent of bringing the Gospel to your children. I hope this is a helpful list of resources that provide encouragement and support for you, mom and dad.
Why Require Unregenerate Children to Act Like They’re Good?
“Here are at least three reasons why Christian parents should require their small children (regenerate or unregenerate) to behave in ways that conform externally to God’s revealed will. I say “small children” because as a child gets older, there are certain external conformities to God’s revealed will that should be required and others that should not. It seems to me, for example, while parents should require drug-free, respectful decency from a 15-year-old, it would do little good to require an unbelieving and indifferent 15-year-old to read his Bible every day. But it would be wise to require that of a 6-year-old, while doing all we can to help him enjoy it and see the benefit in it.”
If you want to know how out of touch some liberal feminists are, take a look at how some responded to pro volleyball player Kerri Walsh Jennings’ recent comments about motherhood.
Walsh-Jennings is competing in the Rio Olympic games this week. She was recently interviewed and asked about her life as a mother and pro athlete. It was just four years ago that Walsh-Jennings won the gold medal in London while pregnant, an act that captured the hearts of many. This time around she is competing as the mother of three and says that her kids gave her the perspective she needed. She said:
I watched a short clip recently with Carl Trueman in which the scholar made the observation that one likely reason we are seeing a drop in church attendance is that parents are simply not teaching their kids that it is a priority. Trueman said:
“The church is losing its young people because the parents never taught their children that it was important. I think that applies across the board. It applies to family worship, and it also applies to whether you are in church every Sunday and what priority you demonstrate to your children church has on a Sunday. If the sun shines out and their friends are going to the beach, do you decide to skip church and go to the beach? In which case, you send signals to your children that it is not important.”
Looking around our culture it is apparent that character is not high on the list of priorities. The selfie generation that is all too willing to trade naked pictures for fame has forgotten the pricelessness of strong character. The effects on our world are more than obvious.
I came across an audio series on teaching character to children. As a father I am always looking for resources to aid my efforts to teach and train my kids. I am keenly aware of the need to teach them morals, respect, and character; so anytime I come across a resource that can help with that task I want to share it.
Let’s face it; we live in a society that does not value character. One look at the political landscape, or at the state of Hollywood and it’s quick to conclude that character and morals are not nearly as valuable as the lack thereof. The self-absorbed, entitled mentality that pervades our culture is a by-product of society that rewards laziness, dishonesty, and corruption. As a parent the task of imparting character and training our kids to think independently and be willing to stand in opposition to “the crowd” is even more critical than ever.
The series includes lessons on cultivating self-control and modesty in our kids, certainly traits that are sorely needed in today’s word of excess and indecency. As more kids become desensitized to sending nude pictures of themselves via text message, self-control and decency are clearly much-needed lessons. It also contains lessons on correction, and how to pray for our children which, I think, are valuable to any parent.
I recently watched the Cleveland Cavaliers pull off an improbable comeback to win the NBA finals. With their team down 3-1 the Cavs won 3 straight games to bring home Cleveland’s first NBA championship; a promise LeBron James issued two years ago. It was an exciting game and series for fans, but it also reminded me of how much Americans worship sports.
To be fair, I love sports. I’ve been playing and watching since I was a kid. What I am most thankful for is that my parents never allowed sports to interfere with our family, or our life as part of the church. That doesn’t seem to be the case today.
How often have you said to your pastor, “we won’t be around much the next few months, it’s _________ season.”?
Some people are going to freak out when they start reading this article. It’s going to send you into nervous twitches and make you want to run from the room screaming. That’s because you have so much stuff in your house the thought of getting rid of anything is one of abject horror.
I’m one of those people that really believe “less is more.” A number of years ago I started looking around our house and realized we had so much stuff we didn’t use. There was things in the kitchen, things in the living room, things on the walls, and things in our closets. From clothes to knick-knacks, utensils to tools, we had more than we needed. I began removing some of these unused items in order to “simplify” life. The more I removed the better I felt. That started a journey into minimalism.
I think it all started with a mission tip to Jamaica. I saw people living with so much less and they seemed to be very happy. They didn’t care that they didn’t have the latest iPhone, or that they only had 3 shirts in their closet instead of 30. The Jamaican people I encountered cared far more about the relationships in their life than the amount of stuff.
I came to West Virginia from the great state of Ohio. I’d spent most of my life in Ohio and considered Ohio my “home state.” I was not thrilled about moving to West Virginia in 2001 because all I knew about the Mountaineer state was redneck and hillbilly jokes. A “city boy” like me was bound to be out of place and have little in common with people that considered “giggin frogs” a viable weekend recreation. But I came here for family.
My dad is a pastor. He had just accepted a position with a church in West Virginia and moved when I was at a place of transition in my life. We talked about working together at this new church as a family; my brother, dad, mom, and myself. The thought of working with family was something that I would not fully appreciate until many years after it was over. But for now I was excited to be living and working around my family.
Fast-forward 15 years and I’m now pensive as I leave West Virginia.
I ran across this video explaining heaven and earth at a blog site I frequent. It’s simple in its composition but the depth of theological insight and teaching is definitely there.
Many people are confused by the difference between heaven and earth. Are they one and the same? Are they totally separate? How will God bring them together? Is God bringing them together now or will that happen in the future? There is a lot of questions and the average church attending Christian does not have many answers.
This fun video illustrates the difference and explains in simple terms what God did, is doing, and will do with respect to heaven and earth. Take a look and see if you don’t learn a few things. Watch it with your kids and start a conversation about how they can come directly into God’s presence each and every day.
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As parents we spend a lot of time teaching our kids. Over the years I have helped teach my kids to:
tie a shoe,
ride a bike,
brush their teeth,
vacuum the floor,
and eat with a fork.
These “lessons” were often informal, not something planned with a manual and graded when we were done.
I’m sure you can recall many “lessons” you taught your kids as they were growing up (or maybe you’re still teaching because your kids are young; or hard-headed.) We often teach our kids without even realizing that we are doing so; a truth that is both interesting and somewhat frightening.
We’ve all been told that kids watch our every move and will learn by watching; they will imitate us. So we do our best as parents to be polite, use our manners, and refrain from burping at the dinner table. We want our kids to learn good habits so we try each day to set an example for them. But what about the lessons that can’t be learned by simply watching and observing someone else?
Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep,
If I should die before I wake,
I pray the Lord my soul to take.
That was the first prayer I remember praying. I prayed it each night with one of my parents before going to sleep. Somewhere along the way I stopped praying that prayer and started praying my own prayers. But that prayer was said with the heart of a child that sincerely wanted to talk to God but didn’t necessarily know how.
I don’t know if you’ve ever thought about the idea of children praying and all the theological implications behind it. As a theology student I can say I have not. As a parent I can say it never occurred to me. That is, until I read an article by Tim Challies in which he answers a question about whether or not it is appropriate to let kids pray.