At age 14 when my son Sam said he wanted a snake I was sure this was an interest that would pass WITHOUT actually getting a REAL snake!
So, I agree to take him to this animal expo http://allanimalexpo.com/ Sure we will simply LOOK at all the nice snakey snakies, it is not like I actually am going to buy him one!
God truly knows just what ya need and precisely when you need it. Matthew 6:8So do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.
Amazingly there was a “snake man” on the stage with a staff literally covered in snakes and some turtles all of which the children could touch, hold, & learn about. Watching my 5 & almost 4 year old boys and my daughter fearlessly hold and handle these snakes made me stop and think. They were actually enjoying themselves! So after getting a little bit closer to the snakes and drilling the “snake man” with a million questions….I actually held ONE! Maybe, just maybe they are not so bad after all. I was completely reassured that the kinds of snakes we were looking at in no way could eat or harm my children!!!!! It is not like the snakes will be mine or I would have to touch them….it was Sammy my Sam who diligently researched, studied, and learned ALL he could learn BEFORE asking for the snakes.
This was an interest for him, a STRONG interest and he was willing to do the work needed. Just because it wasn’t my interest or I didn’t like it does that mean I should just say NO, does it? If this was encouraging him to learn I mean tenaciously learn wouldn’t I be denying him if I said no! He wouldn’t have the chance to embrace and grow in something he truly is passionate about! This kid is a snake encyclopedia, he knows all the colors, the morphs, the genetics, housing, feeding, breeding and much more I don’t even know about!
Though I would not have chose or even lead my son down this path I am so grateful I chose to see and support his desires that were benefiting him and others well!
1 Thessalonians 5:11 Therefore encourage one another and build up one another, just as you also are doing.
Do you see an interest, passion, or even a burning desire in your child? Now, I challenge you whether it is something YOU like or not, what are you doing about it?
Oh Lord, I want to lift up this Book(the Bible)……I lift up this Book to You!!!!! As Mathew 7:24-27 states “Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them, may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock. Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell—and great was its fall.”
This amazing awe-inspiring Book of life is our foundation for the family!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Satan savagely seeks to ravage, inflict suffering, and oppress God’s most very good creation, the family. Satan has been prevailing in this country, from the Industrial Revolution taking fathers out of their homes and away from their families, to the feminist movement taking mothers out of the home and away from their families. This has left our children to be raised by themselves and the ever-enticing world so ready to devour them.
The FAMILY……..peel back the layers of most any societal devastation and you will find at the root the family…..or what is left of it. When Satan can annihilate God’s most VERY GOOD creation how his evil prevails. One will never fight victoriously without one’s armor, THE WORD. I urge you if you are NOT already reading scriptureday and night not just to yourself but to your children; to take that dusty book off the shelf, pull it out of the closet, or simply pick it up from the coffee table. As soon as your babes can hear begin to fill them with Life, the life of Christ which is everlasting. May this Rock be the one your family is built upon, the Rock of Christ and His mighty word we all so desperately need.
I wrote this story this past December and entered it in a story contest hosted by Vision Forum http://www.visionforum.com/start.aspx. I did not expect to win though that would have been nice since the thousand dollars would have gotten me to Texas this July, but I did not. The experience of writing this was so awesome as God was speaking so clearly at that moment in time.
For the past month I have been going through Emerson Eggerichs’ book Love and Respect as well as watching the group study videos. Repeatedly I am brought to so many parallels and relevant truths that I felt I had to share what my eyes have been opened to SEE. In one of his sessions Dr. Eggerichs talked about feminism and a sinking boat. Would not even a feminist aboard the sinking Titanic be in favor of women and children first? I don’t think there would be a protest there!
In order to shed light on Women and children we must also shine the light on men. We can’t have one without the other…can we! What exactly does God say about the role and the character of men and women? What about the children…..do we, as Christians, understand what God has to say about His children?
If I embrace the inner being, the deep seeded need within a man would Women and Children first really become clearer? Ephesians 5:23For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. So right here is a clear call upon husbands to lead. When I look up head in the dictionary I find the definition the position or place of leadership, greatest authority, or honor. Can you hear those powerful words, leadership, authority, and honor? Then in verses 25 & 33 husbands are commanded to love their wives. It seems that God commands us to do things because they go precisely against every human inclination we have. That fact that God has to command men to do this does speak loudly as to not only they are not naturally wired to give this kind of love, but also to their deepest need. This doesn’t seemingly flow out of a man because it is not what he innately needs. For a man to receive honor and respect is to receive love. In the second part of Ephesians 5:33 a wife is commanded to respect her husband…why? Because God knows that this essential for a man to survive. Again reaffirming without question who a man is in Christ.
Why are so many unruly teenage and older young men sent off to the military? More times than not these men not only become productive but outstanding men of honor…..why? On a daily basis they are being trained in their deepest inner needs, leadership, authority, honor, and respect. When this need is fed and shaped these men are compelled with great dignity and esteem to die for one another. How else could a man willingly and even without fear give up his life, because he is acting upon the core of who God created him to be.
Ephesians also reveals what a wife is to do as well as what she needs to survive. Verse 5:23Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. Submit is defined as to give over or yield to the power or authority of another, to allow oneself to be subjected to some kind of treatment, or to defer to another’s judgment, opinion, decision. Surrendering and trusting in my husband just as I daily surrender and trust in my Lord. In obeying that command I am not only being faithful to the Word, but I also am fulfilling one piece of my husband’s deepest need TO LEAD. It takes greater strength and obedience to submit then to rebel and in doing so one will discover a great fruit that is produced.
Fulfilling your role as a woman only removes the barriers for a man to fulfill his God ordained role. What enables a man to lead his family so well? That mighty command in verse 33and the wife must respect her husband. Through submitting in obedience to God (which is the only way to submit or ya really aren’t submitting at all…are you?) and unconditionally respecting a husband, how can he not be compelled to be your hero unto death!
Ephesians 33 not only commands a wife to love her husband but it also commands a husband to love his wife…..why? Love is a woman’s innate nature and her deepest NEED.God knew what He was doing when He created a woman to carry a child in the womb and to nourish that babe by nursing him. It is out of her God given nature that she can do these things so well. I didn’t say it was easy, but she does do them well. Let’s say we are in the woods taking a hike and out of the forest charges a bear. The first gut reaction of a man would be to find a weapon and attack the bear risking his own life. What would be the first reaction of the woman? She would grab hold of those children of hers and thrust them towards her for dear life and immediately seek a safer location….would she not?
A child, none of us reached adulthood without being one first. Psalm 36:7How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God! Therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of Your wings. The peace that flows when I visually imagine resting under the wings of God. He is our great and embracing wing here to protect His precious creations……His little children.
Matthew 18:1-5At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” Then Jesus called a little child to Him, set him in the midst of them, and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Whoever receives one little child like this in My name receives Me. Receiving a child is receiving Christ.The innocence, the deepest of honesty, and the purest of purity in a child. The immature mind so unknown to the many knowns. Whom of us wouldn’t be willing to save one?
Psalm 127:3Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Heritage is defined in the dictionary as something that comes or belongs to one by reason of birth. Children come to you because He gave them to you. That is so powerful and as if not enough the verse goes on to say that they are a reward. This magnificent, spectacular, and challenging being is my reward from God….I am in absolute awe.God’s rewards, the children that come from and belong to…..Him are given to us to be treasured and dearly protected.
In accepting and relishing God’s commands to submit and give unconditional respect I will find myself receiving the blessing of being protected and loved through a man’s great honor. The more I sculpt and magnify my God-given ability to unconditionally love these children the greater will my ability be to embody my cherished gifts.
So is women and children first Biblical? His truths are clear and ever convicting all one has yet to do….is believe them.
So after all my talkin up of this movie I FINALLY got to see it and then I saw it again and then I watched all the extras and that leads me here. So much to say how to do it without writing you a book. How bout we just start with what should be the obvious. God KNOWS what He is doin. It takes a man AND a woman to create a child because………that child NEEDS a Papa and a Mama to raise him, to love him, and to show him the way.
I understand that I am called on by God to respect my mother and father regardless, and I am finally reaching the place of fully grasping that. Respecting doesn’t always mean agreeing with. I will share with respect the devastation from a girl’s perspective of growing up without a father there. If I had been evaluated as a child a psychologist probably could have precisely predicted much of the path I would later take…..and that is NOT a good thing.
Oh how our daddies set the path for our future husband and pretty much any male understanding. We are most likely to seek what we have known, even if that is NOT good! So, if we have felt rejected, unloved, unworthy, and of NO value at all, quite sadly it will be our tendency to race full force towards men who in-turn give us or should I say deny usour worth and value in Christ. I am not here to blame fathers simply I am pointing out a very sad truth.
I cannot tell you how much I pray for this scene in the movie to be played out in real-life for my daughter. What Nathan gives his daughter is more powerful and priceless than anything else he could do for her. It is so wondrous I cannot due it enough justice…you’ll have to just GO see the movie!
Being a mama of 6 boys, which I just have to think God is laughing at me or something, cause me who had never seen a positive male throughout her life and you give ME 6 sons.…huh! Or maybe God really does know what He is doing and He blessed me with these sons because the more my eyes are opened and the more He reveals the more this sense of urgency to raise these amazing young men up to BE Courageous men. I know the world could use some!
As my oldest reached 18 this past year and the next oldest is 16 there is something truly profound that I am discovering. As a boy is growing into his later teen years there is a transition that needs to occur. I am and will always be his mama and he should respect my authority as his mama, but.……the more I truly grasp what God has to say about the role of a man and the role of a woman, the more I struggle to lead them. You see God commands my husband to be the leader of his home and YES I, a woman am commanded to submit and be subject to my husband.Ephesians 5:22-33, 1 Peter 3:1-7, Titus 2:1-5 So my boys are to be trained that one day they will rise up and be the head of their households and that their wife is to be loved, cherished, and submissive to them. So……how are they supposed to learn to be the head over the woman when it is the woman(me) teaching them to be the head…….do you see the hypocrisy?A son NEEDS desperately to learn how to lead by HIS FATHER! Do you realize that if you peal back most any of today’s devastating destructive forces you will find the butchering of the family at the core! I know, that is a whole another blog and a mighty one. Satan knows what he is doing here and he is attacking full force. So, if you hear it, if you see it, if you get it…….what are you willing TO DO about it??????????????????
Courageous men can’t do it without the unfailing security, respect, & esteem from a wife that is right by their side! For all you wives who scream out how you want a Courageous husband, are you WILLING to be this kind of wife?
How different would your household be if you lived out day by day this Resolution?
We all have heard how important it is to be in the Worddaily and how many of us struggle and flail to achieve that? Then through tenacious seeking & the Holy Spirit’s conviction you finally get to the point of putting this first and foremost and it no longer seems like such a challenge. Your heart of stone becomes that heart of flesh He has given you. Ezekiel 36:26I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. With a grateful heart you make worshiping Him your FIRST priority.
Most Christians discipling their children see the importance of Teaching our children the Word of God, but how many of us see the brilliant sheen in sharing Christ daily, together, and as a family? The unity, empowerment, encouragement. What an amazing deep level of intimacy in sharing Christ with one another.
For the second year my favorite math teacher, Steve Demme, is offering a challenge to encourage and introduce families to being committed to regular family worship. I dearly revere Mr. Demme as I have had the pleasure of hearing him speak several times and I am an avid believer in his math program http://www.mathusee.com/ which 5 of my children currently use. Mr. Demme’s challenge last year really called me out to decide that dinner time was going to be a great way for my WHOLE family to embrace God together. This is now a regular practice without fail! Doesn’t have to be difficult and fancy. Sometimes it is short and sweet and other times it is more meaty. Sometimes the children are completely engaged and other times that’s more of a challenge. The point is I will NOT be deterred I have made the commitment and I am upholding that commitment. I am always seeking new ways to embrace God as a family.
Here is my challenge to YOU…….are you DAILY spending time in the Word together? If not, why? I see the rich blessing of this in my home and the many many blessings yet to come. Will you join me on this journey and enjoy the fellowship of encouragement in each other along the way?
Here is the link to Mr. Demme’s Bible reading challenge
How great would the atmosphere of your household be when serving the One together. Don’t quit cause your family isn’t on-board, don’t quit cause you think you are not a Bible scholar, Don’t quit cause you think you don’t know where to find Him….He has already found YOU!
Grace that underserved unearned free gift from another from which we owe nothing in return, that which makes our God so magnifiscent and so beyond our understanding.
This past September I along with my children were completely wowed by being the recipients of God’s grace through His dedicated servants Kevin and Teri Miller.
What happens when you step out in faith, even when it might be terrifying and the future is completely unknown, AND you trust God for the rest.……? The Holy Spirit motivates your dearest friends to invite you along with 6 of your 7 kiddos to come and stay in their home. To be loved upon, to be cared for, to share life with……..it is truly AMAZING!
So, what happens when you extend God’s grace to the Jimenez family? Why of course we poop our pants, hand wash them and then hang them to dry outside on the deck……only to be found by a horrified poor little old Canyon.
This is just some of what we experienced:
Witness the beauty of seeing our older kids absolutely bond together through talking, bonfires, and making funny faces on the computer.
The sharing of meals
Food was not only provided but cooked also
Gathered and prayed together with our “big” kiddos…….shared Christ together, do you know how profound this was!
Got to hike in the forest
The little people learned how to make like a mini-me
Nando got to “help” Kevin work
What mama doesn’t bask in seeing the beauty of their little ones sharing tenderness, Nando and Serene!
So, what did we leave with? Or should I say what did we learn from them?
We now eat a salad every night before dinner
I realize the importance in each of my kiddos having their own Bibles(we used to just share and pass mine around, though they had their own)
It is enriching to see everyone with so much better to do than watch tv
I am encouraged to say please and sorry to my kiddos more
My children got to witness a man actively taking uphis spiritual leadership of the home-priceless
I got to see two people who genuinely love each other
Encouraged to know that parents CAN be amazingly effective in parenting their kiddos
When I first arrived at the Miller’s home, my sweet Teri hands me a notecard on which Isaiah 61:3 was written. This was the call God placed in her heart and she and her family acted in obedience to that call and here is how that verse was fulfilled.
To console those who mourn in Zion, I am completely embraced To give them beauty for ashes, A radiant shine that is blinding The oil of joy for mourning, So filled with His joy the overflow pours out The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; Humbled to my knees with a head tilted high That they may be called trees of righteousness, Abounding in strength unfathomable from within The planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified.” With deepening roots extending straight towards Him
When grace finds you.…isn’t that how it comes when we don’t see it coming, totally outside of anything we’ve done or could do, not of my own accord, but freely uninhibited without repayment in return….cause really then it wouldn’t be grace now would it!
Here is a helpful tip for ya. If you ever get the honor and blessing of hangin with the Millers DON”T EVER TOUCH TERI’S LAUNDRY…….not even one dirty little sock….totally serious!
When were you recipients of God’s grace through His faithful servants here on earth?
17 hours driving through the night and 6 blissfully sleeping children with one energized ready to go mama……Ok it wasn’t that serene, but seriously that wasn’t to far off from the truth. A few quirmishes in the first couple of hours and then they were out for the night, they didn’t wake till morning, and get this…NOT ONEare we there yet?
So we arrive at Camp Elim around 8:30 am all the way from the Chicago burbs and AMEN for adrenalin cause yeah, I was slightly tired. Nothing a little Colorado beauty can’t wake up! And ok, I need to give a HUGE shout out to my Antonio, cause with that little permit he holds YES he did take over and drive for a chunk of the night
Rock climbing, ziplining, & obstacle courses.
Makin funny faces on some hay, canoeing, & trying to push mom off a rock.
Taking walks together, an amazing cabin to sleep in, & who wouldn’t want to do achery!
Hobo breakfast, water wars kids verses parents, and yes, those are canoes in the swimming pool!
And probably the most favorable of games…..the carpet ball…which I still don’t get, but they loved it!
So among the great camp food, family friendliness, square dancing, & bonfire raging times there was a greater purpose to all of this……Christ. The Creator of the family would not be served if not put right in the center of family camp. We had Chapel 2 times a day and classes specific to each child’s age. I had the privilege of learning from an amazing speaker I had never heard of before Bruce Mcdonald. Let me tell ya, I have a whole new perspective on the donkey.
These are just a few of the things that we did from Saturday morning through Monday at lunch. Great time together as a family…great time together with God. Did it have its hard moments? YES!!!!! Mom on NO sleep and children NOT listening are a BAD combination!Did I WANT to be the seemingly single mom with 6 of her 7 children at a family camp filled with husbands and wives? NO, of course NOT! BUT…..look at what my kids and I would have been denied had I NOT pushed through and done this? God’s blessings have clearly outweighed any of my hardships in pursuing HIM!
So if you are ever out and about in Woodland Park around Labor Day check out their Family Camp you absolutely won’t regret it. Camp Elim just wouldn’t be Camp Elim without Dan and Teri Faulkner, two truly amazing human beings. This lovely couple married for 29 years head up the camp and welcomed my family with open arms more than willing to accomate. Camp Elim has become a permenant part of us and for that I am forever grateful!