Maybe it’s not just about relationships….

There are teachers who are not good pastors and there are pastors who are not good teachers.  I am sure that there are some who have both qualities but I haven’t found one yet.  I have also heard time and again that people want to just love but there is no scripture behind it.  There seems to be an idea that love alone will do just fine.   Love is great, it’s true.  Love already won the war but there are still battles to be fought.

That might have given you the impression that this is going to be another discussion about the armor of God and while those verses speak their own truths, I want to share something else.

Continue reading

Your facts aren’t facts anymore

I know that every generation has it’s flaws.  I know that there will always be sin in this world because it is a fallen world.  I also know that until Jesus returns there will be plenty of knees that do not bow to His awesome wonder.  But just because I know this doesn’t make it any easier.

In today’s world we have more access to information than we have ever had before.  Where there was once encyclopedias that lined the shelves, now we have Google.  Where there used to be libraries, now we have Kobo’s to hold all of our reading material. Where there used to be truth… now we have bold faced lies. Continue reading

The myth of Christmas…

If I was to tell you a story, but before I did, I told you that this story was true and it was the greatest thing I could ever tell you, I think you would be intrigued.  I think your ears would perk up a little bit even if you didn’t care because it sounds cool, and inviting, and interesting.  So. in my enthusiasm,  I proceed to tell you the story line and it is captivating!  You may have even heard it before a couple times or watched a show that was similar to it.  You are left feeling awestruck. When I stop, you have this yearning to learn more so you find the book I told you about and start reading.  This is when you discover that my story isn’t quite as truthful as I portrayed.  You realize that my story has some flaws. In fact, my story actually consists of just as many fabrications as it does truths.  How would you feel?  Would you come back to ask me about it? Or, would you walk away and never seek further clarification?

These are my thoughts when I see nativity scenes or plays about Christmas .  I wonder if the people who are watching these (whether they know Jesus or not) will eventually open their Bible and wonder why we didn’t tell them the truth.  When I say this, let me also add that the myths that have grown legs in the retelling of the birth of Jesus may not be exactly earth shattering, or life changing — as a burning bush displayed on Noah’s ark might be, or Goliath portrayed as one of the men captive in the lion’s den. Still, I have never seen a story that is one of the most important days in history, so jumbled with non truths and this is my point.

Continue reading

Preparing for Christmas

Every family has their own traditions when it comes to Christmas and each one is special for one reason or another.  When it comes to how Christians celebrate the upcoming holiday there tends to be a lot of discussion on what is acceptable and what is not.  There have been times that I have looked at what another Christian family does and I have judged them on their choices.

In my family, we do our best to start each day with our Christmas Nativity Countdown which consists of reading a small part of the scriptures leading up to Jesus’ birth and then going out to do an act of service within the community.  Now it is day 6 and we have only completed 4 acts of service so we are obviously not perfect at this but it sounds great right?  It sounds so… Christian… but then you look at our other traditions and you find we have put up hundreds of lights and an inflatable snowman, there are two decorated trees and we watch a dozen or more movies about a grinch, reindeers and santa.  There will also be way more presents than my children need under the tree and although we do try to buy things that are practical and not wasteful, they definitely do not lack for anything.   Continue reading

Getting ready for advent!

A lot of people right now are preparing for Christmas!  There is less than a month until the big day arrives and the hustle and bustle has begun.  The Black Friday sales caused havoc and brought out the worst in some and the Cyber Monday sales had people up all hours of the night trying to be the first to close the deal.  A penny saved is a penny earned, right?  Too bad the penny has been retired in Canada because that penny began to cost more than it was worth.

Every year industries sell billions of dollars of stuff that cost more than they are worth and yet the only reason they do it is because we keep buying it.  I’m just as guilty as the next person because my kids’ presents are purchased and wrapped already.  I love Christmas!  I love the excitement, the giving, the treats and the laughter.  I love spending time with family and friends, cookie exchanges and the lights!  I love the singing, the bells and driving around to good old Rudolph.  It is the most wonderful time of the year!

But that isn’t all there is to it…  And even though the world forgets, we as Christians cannot. Continue reading

James 1

Have you ever read the book of James?  There is so much good “stuff” in there.  I know I have learned a lot from watching my siblings but I can’t even imagine being James.  He definitely learned a lot though and I’m grateful that I have these scriptures to learn from too.  If you have never read it, feel free to follow along with me as I go through each chapter and write about it.

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=James+1

Did you read it?  Did it make you kind of shake in your boots?  Welcome to James! Continue reading

Nothing to write about

I’ve been thinking a lot lately… I have been thinking about family, friends, God, life and basically just examining what I am doing.  Yes, I put God after family and friends because this writer isn’t perfect.  He doesn’t always come first in my life even though He should.

In a particularly upsetting moment with my husband I asked him, “What will we have in 15 years when our last child leaves this house?” He didn’t have an answer and neither did I.   Continue reading

When the earth shakes… or doesn’t

Last week was hard.  It’s the only way to describe it.

Last week someone decided to scare people and fill their hearts with fear.  A lot of people.  Multiple colleges, universities and public buildings were notified of bomb threats.  Every school in the smallest province of Canada was evacuated because of the threats leveled against them.  Thousands of people left buildings that should have been safe havens — terrified.  Thousands of small children were told to leave their belongings behind and exit the school.

I read the headlines with a sick feeling in my stomach. I have four nephews, one niece and some other dearly loved children who were being negatively affected by this.  I couldn’t even process the thought that someone thought a bomb scare might be acceptable.  That someone would feel it was alright to scare children.

A few days later, I went about my day like any other when once again there were headlines of buildings being evacuated due to more threats.  These ones were even closer to my home.  Again my stomach was sick, thinking that someone would do this.

However, through the moments of anxiety and unknown, something unusual happened. The news reports and commentary confirmed my resolve to ensure that I raise my children to live for Christ.  Moreover, these events have encouraged me to home educate my kids, because although I cannot protect them from every threat, our decision protected them from experiencing unnecessary anxiety this time. And for me, this is a good thing.

After much reflection, I have concluded that people who send threats to schools like this have not known Jesus. Neither do these people understand how much Jesus loves them.  They do not know the grace and mercy that He has been offered to them and they definitely were not raised to show empathy toward others.

Do you know what else they lacked in their life?  A friend who cared enough to tell them how precious they are.  A friend who came alongside and walked through life with them.

There is a stereotypical person out there who does these things.  There is also a stereotypical response that society declares that everyone else has shown towards them. And, I believe, it is this response which is causing the problem.  We need to stand strong in Christ so that when we meet these people we recognize their need for prayer.  We recognize that they need someone who will demonstrate to them a love like the love Jesus showed for us when He shed His holy blood on the cross for you and I.

I want to raise my child to be that person.  I want to raise my children to be the person who stands firm when the ground shakes … and, even when it doesn’t.  I want you to raise your children to be the same.  Teach our children to read the Bible everyday. Raise them to hear God’s word. Show them through our life how joyful it is to sing His praises. And similarly, to recognize that life without Jesus is no life at all.

From a broader perspective, I want to see the body of Christ move so powerfully that we can eliminate the threat before it happens — His love flowing through us to those around us. Lifting people up and encouraging them to become the light that Jesus wants us to be. And if the ground does shake one day, because our world is full of sin, then I want to have enough faith in Jesus to know that we as believers can be united within the body of Christ, standing firm with one another against any enemy that seeks to destroy.

Standing in the gap #endmomguilt

There is a video that keeps popping up on my Facebook page with the hashtag #endmomguilt.  It started the week I was having some serious mom guilt happening and somehow Facebook knew this.  So I watched the video and it was a few moms talking about how they wish they didn’t yell as much, played more with their kids, wished they could stay at home with them, could afford more things for them, etc.  Some talked about their regret over formula feeding instead of breastfeeding or co-sleeping verses putting them in their crib alone.  It is an endless list of what moms will feel guilty for.

My guilt actually stemmed from me realizing that once again I had let life get so busy that I didn’t have time to enjoy it.  In my frustration from trying to coordinate four kids to do what I needed, I forgot that these little ones are just that… little.  My oldest is 7 and at that age he cannot comprehend deadlines, rush hour traffic, or the large pile of dishes waiting to be cleaned.  My six year old doesn’t notice the pet hair that is floating through the air or the bills that need to be paid so the lights stay on.  My four year old doesn’t understand why he can’t just grab an apple instead of waiting for the chicken to cook.  And the baby… well she is just a baby and is constantly demanding of everyone’s time.  So goes the cycle of sleep deprived, hungry, over worked, under appreciated mom who turns to yelling to get stuff done.

But it doesn’t get stuff done, although it does release some frustration, it definitely doesn’t solve the problem.  So when I realized that I was yelling more than I was loving, I stopped and I looked around.  I breathed… they waited… and I remembered that they are little. Continue reading

Prayer

Prayer.  I have written before on this subject but I don’t think that there is ever too many reminders to pray.

We all have our struggles.  It’s part of living in a sinful world.  Jesus told us that there would be trouble.  I think many of us have stopped there.  We read that part of the verse and think, “well if Jesus wants me to go through this then I guess it’s just what I’m going to have to do.”  It makes me cringe every time I hear someone exclaim that God is gonna teach them a lesson or that God has put this in their path so that we can become a better christian.  Don’t people remember Eden? Continue reading