Parenting

Kids Need Parents to Show Them They Matter

In spite of the fact that most of us enjoy a vast array of modern conveniences, it feels like we are busier than ever. Our lives are full or work and church and school and chores, all of which are important and necessary. Our kids are busy as well, attending school and Sunday School to receive academic and spiritual instruction, and most play sports or participate in other extra-curricular activities.

Over time, we may find ourselves delegating more and more parental responsibility to schools, churches, health care professionals, counselors, psychiatrists—and since we place quite a bit of faith in specialists and experts, we may forget just how much our children need us in their lives.

It’s tempting to imagine that if we just had more money, more convenience, more resources, and more time, we could do better as parents. To think we must meet our child’s physical need for food, clothing, and shelter, but to also meet their spiritual, emotional, mental, and intellectual needs—why not just admit we feel inadequate, and sometimes downright terrified! Read more about Kids Need Parents to Show Them They Matter

Why Can't We Be Friends?

Today’s ideas about “biblical” love, dating, and courtship come from a variety of sources. Notable influencers in this area have been Bill Gothard, Joshua Harris (I Kissed Dating Goodbye), Josh McDowell and Richard Ross (True Love Waits). I’m sure all of us are affected by our own experiences as a young person navigating the mine field of romantic relationships, and all this combined together may add up to more confusion than clarity.

My biggest concern is the lack of Bible in “biblical” advice about The Search for a Spouse. The Bible guides us in several ways, including command, doctrine, principle, precedent, and illustration. Taking in all the preaching and teaching I’ve heard over the years would lead me to believe that there is a mandate for every Christian to focus on acquiring a spouse with an accompanying list of commandments so each can find The Right One.

We are not very quick to acknowledge the few clear Scriptural reasons we are given to pursue marriage: to avoid fornication, as a picture of Christ and the church, and to raise godly children. Even though Paul advocates for singlehood, we can ignore him whenever he speaks by permission and not of commandment. Right? Read more about Why Can't We Be Friends?

The Importance of Free Will and Purposeful Work for Children

I enjoy reading quotes about a variety of topics. Good quotes are condensed truth delivered in a fashion that is as amusing as it is thought-provoking. But sometimes I read a quote, which at first sounds so wise, witty, or practical, and then after a few seconds I’m like, “What?!”

I recently read a quote credited to Sir Richard Charles Nicholas Branson, a successful businessman, investor and philanthropist, and founder of the Virgin Group, which, by the way, controls more than 400 companies. I’m all for listening to what hard-working, successful people have to say.

You don’t learn to walk by following rules. You learn by doing, and by falling over.

Read more about The Importance of Free Will and Purposeful Work for Children

True Confessions of a Homeschool Mom

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about the number of articles and posts I’ve read where fellow mombloggers are confessing that their lives aren’t perfect. The buzz words today are “authenticity” and “transparency.” Whatever your vocation or message, it has become important to emphasize that you have many flaws and sometimes bad things happen in your life.

OK. So I recognize the need to know we aren’t alone, to gain encouragement from the idea that others have faced similar circumstances, to feel understood. But I thought it was a given that even if someone appears to be blissfully successful, they still have real life problems like the rest of us. I mean, haven’t you noticed how many Hollywood couples can’t seem to stay married (or faithful), for longer than 5 minutes?

Death, disease, betrayal, and fear are felt by everyone—just read the headlines while waiting in the checkout line at the store. Money, fame, and beauty don’t immunize you to sorrow or pain. Tragedy is not a respecter of persons. Read more about True Confessions of a Homeschool Mom

The Importance of the Golden Rule

I’m assuming we’ve all heard The Golden Rule—“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” the origin of which is usually credited to Leviticus 19:18 and the words of the Lord in Matthew 7:12 and Luke 6:31; also known as The Great Commandment.

For people who like techie speak, The Golden Rule represents the ethic of reciprocity. And every major religion, including some not so major, recognize this maxim as words to the wise. Most parents use it as a way to teach children empathy and how to treat others.

I’m Libertarian enough to believe the Golden Rule applies to the role of government, in the sense that individuals have the right to do whatever they wish with their own life, liberty, and property, but the line is drawn at the life, liberty, and property of others.

We’ve heard it so often and take it all so for granted it’s become a cliché.

I was taught The Golden Rule when I was a child, but unfortunately, I don’t think much of it stuck. Or should I say I practiced it instinctively as an aspect of simple self-preservation. However, after receiving Christ I felt a compelling need to embody the love and compassion that Jesus showed to those around Him. Read more about The Importance of the Golden Rule

How should a Christian respond to Banned Books Week?

Every year, book lovers and avid readers build up a head of steam about Banned Books Week. The purpose of Banned Books Week is to celebrate the freedom to read, and to highlight the importance of free and open access to information.

Parents who want to protect their children from harmful influences may sometimes challenge books with objectionable content, which causes a conflict between a freedom loving society and Christian values. How should a Christian respond?

Banned or Challenged?

The term “banned” is a little misleading. The American Library Association’s Banned Books List includes any book that is “challenged,” for whatever reason. Read more about How should a Christian respond to Banned Books Week?

Why Children Should Volunteer

The first thing I want to say about volunteerism and “giving back” is that I don’t believe in such things as an “unfair advantage” or “luck.” If you as parents work hard to feed, clothe, and shelter your children; you love and nurture them, pushing them to be responsible, caring members of society; you spend time, energy and money to ensure they have a solid education so they can succeed in life—then you are a normal family.

What isn’t and shouldn’t be accepted as normal is neglectful, violent, or substance-abusing parents. Children aren’t “lucky” because their parents don’t beat them or there’s actually nutritious food in the fridge. This attitude makes neglect and abuse the norm, and it implies that inhabiting a loving home is some kind of magical “only if you are fortunate” thing.

We understand that all good things come from God, but many good things are a natural consequence of prudent behavior—sowing and reaping works just as well for the unregenerate as for those who are redeemed. The eternal reaping comes later, but that’s not what I’m talking about here. Read more about Why Children Should Volunteer

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