Parent Devotional

//Parent Devotional
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Family Love Makes The Triune God Visible

If we emphasize the unity of God, we picture in our mind, a lonely, mysterious God who, we think, may have created man and woman because he was lonely. Much as a widower might purchase a dog to overcome loneliness, God made man and woman to have a relationship with.

The truth could not be further from this thought. Our God who is one in essence, is nevertheless three in persons. Before time began, God dwelt in perfect community, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Tim Keller states it this way: “So we believe that the world was made not by a God who is an individual nor by an emanation of an impersonal force. But by a God who is a community of persons who have loved […]

The Great Commission Starts at Home

Jesus gave his disciples the Great Commission. “Go and make disciples, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Spirit, teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you,” (Matthew 28:19-20). This command is so crucial that it is repeated in various forms in the other gospels and at the beginning of the book of Acts.  The Great Commission is not just for the “spiritual” people but is to infiltrate the priorities of all Christians.

As my expression of fulfilling the Great Commission, I felt called to leave the area I had grown up (Alabama) and stay in New England to help plant a church to reach this area with the gospel. With only 1-3% of the population in […]

Spurgeon: Tell Your Children

“Tell ye your children of it, and let your children tell their children, and their children another generation.” — Joel 1:3

In this simple way, by God’s grace, a living testimony for truth is always to be kept alive in the land-the beloved of the Lord are to hand down their witness for the gospel, and the covenant to their heirs, and these again to their next descendants.

This is our first duty, we are to begin at the family hearth: he is a bad preacher who does not commence his ministry at home. The heathen are to be sought by all means, and the highways and hedges are to be searched, but home has a prior claim, and woe unto those who reverse the order of […]

Parent Devotional|

Wisdom and Justice VS Lack of Wisdom and Injustice

So give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong…So God said to him, “Since you have asked for this …for discernment in administering justice, I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart…1 Kings 3:10-12
As a parent, I will be called upon to make a myriad of decisions. Should my child take certain classes? Should he or she do this afterschool activity or the other one? When do I push them toward an activity that they don’t want to do, but I think will be good for them? In the midst of difficult situations, when do I make them persevere and when do I allow them to quit? Do […]

Had I Been Joseph’s Mother – A Poem by Ruth Bell Graham

A Ruth Bell Graham Poem.

Had I been Joseph’s mother
I’d have prayed/ protection from his brothers
“God keep him safe./ He is so young,
so different from / the others.”
Mercifully, / she never knew
there would be slavery/ and prison, too.

Had I been Moses’ mother
I’d have wept/ To keep my little son;
praying she might forget/the babe drawn
from the water /of the Nile.
Had I not kept/ him for her/ nursing him the while,
was he not mine – and she/ but Pharoah’s daughter?

Had I been Daniel’s mother
I should have pled / “Give victory!
-this Babylonian horde / godless and cruel –
Don’t let him be a captive – better dead,
Almighty Lord!”

Had I been Mary,/Oh had I been she,
I would have cried/ As never mother cried,
Anything, O God, / Anything…- but / crucified.”
With such […]

Helping our Children Handle Suffering

Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 5:10

As a parent, I want the best for my child. But in wanting that best, I can become confused, using only human wisdom. I hate to see my child suffer in any way. And yet, following Jesus involves suffering. So, if I am going to call my children to follow Christ, then I am going to call them to suffer.

Perhaps the corrective on suffering needs to start in my own mind. Francis Schaeffer argued over 30 years ago that the majority of adult Christians are worshipping the idols of personal peace and affluence. We, the parents, want a Christianity that brings us a sense of tranquility and […]

Painful Love and Forgiveness

Blessed are those that mourn, for they will be comforted. Matthew 5:4

Our families will never be perfect. We will sin against each other and be sinned against. Relationships invariably involve pain. That is the way of love. How we choose to react to that pain will depend on our perspective.

C. S. Lewis makes clear that the choice is between loving and having a hard heart.

Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in […]

Puritan Activities to Encourage Spiritual Growth

At this time of year, it is appropriate to remember our spiritual (and perhaps physical) forefathers.  New England’s first white settlers were those who separated from the worldy Church of England (Separatists).  These “Pilgrims” landed in 1620.  Another group tried to purify the worldy Church of England (Puritans).  But a mere ten years later, the colony was infused with a great migration of Puritans who had finally given up on the Church of England.  Two thousand Puritans emigrated in 1630 alone.  Both of these groups brought with them a rich emphasis on the daily walk of the believer. We can do well to imitate them.  The following notes are from Christian History Magazine, Issue 41,

The Puritans sought a living relationship with Jesus Christ through public worship and private “devotions.”  Private devotions took place in secret exercises, private conferences, family devotions, and private […]

Stability in Times of Uncertainty

In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord, high and lifted up. Isaiah 6:1

He shall be called… Everlasting Father. Isaiah 9:6

We crave stability.

In the 1940’s, Franklin Delano Roosevelt was elected to an unprecedented third and fourth term as a U.S. president. George Washington had set the unwritten precedent that a president should serve only two terms.

How was the precedent of 150 years so easily overturned?

America was traversing the uncertainty of the Great Depression and World War II.  When all around is uncertain, it was comforting to look to the stability of our leaders. The comfort of stability was greater than precedent.

We want leaders we can have confidence in.

Isaiah must have deeply felt this uncertainty when he learned that Uzziah died. The king, whose name […]

Seven Questions to Assess If Your Anger is Righteous

David Powlison on Seven Questions to Ask if Your Anger is Righteous

1. Do you get angry about the right things?
2. Do you express your anger in the right way?
3. How long does your anger last?
4. How controlled is your anger?
5. What motivates your anger?
6. Is your anger “primed and ready” to respond to another person’s habitual sins?
7. What is the effect of your anger?

From “Anger Part 1: Understanding Anger,” Journal of Biblical Counseling, 1995

This is really helpful for those who defend their anger as righteous. Scripture does leave a category for righteous anger. And at times, anger can be our helper. However, in the majority of cases, human anger has a sinful element to it. These seven questions help us to discern any sin.