Does your teen have a daily devotional that they enjoy? Something that will help teach them the importance of daily Bible reading times? Check out Amazons review: One of America’s favorite pastors, Max Lucado offers his first 365 devotional for teens, encouraging them to trust God and His perfect plan for their lives. Life is hard, and today’s teens could use daily guidance and reassurance that God is with them, through it all and despite it all. In One God, One Plan, One Life, bestselling author Max Lucado offers teens an accessible way to connect with their Lord. Daily devotions address such topics as faith and obedience but also offer wisdom on topics that teens battle, such as purity, bullying, alcohol and drug use, and self-image. Each day includes a short devotion and accompanying scripture as well as a take-away application that will inspire and challenge teens to trust in God and His plans for them. One God, One Plan, One Life helps teens to cut through life’s distractions and rely on the one thing that is truly important—a relationship with God. Features & Benefits: Max’s first 365 devotional for teens and tweens 365 scriptures, devotional thoughts, and life-shaping applications Encourages daily quiet time and developing a personal relationship with God My husband and I looked through this book and while it is a good devotional, there were some things we had issues with. I didn’t like the dates on the devotional. I would rather have the days say: day 1, day 2 and so on. Instead of January 1, January 2 etc. We don’t care for the Bible versions used, but that may be trivial for some. There are a couple of the devotions we were iffy on. All in all though this is a really good devotional for teens and we will for sure be keeping it on the shelf for our boys. I give it a 4/5 To get your copy click here: In Christ, Laura
When you are so tired that you can barely keep your eyelids open and you look at the clock at its only 2:30 in the afternoon. All you want is a nap and maybe a little peace and quiet but yet you get 12 hours of your name being called every 5 minutes ov…
Too Many Teddies Giveaway Hosted by The Gemini Mama Sponsored by Be That Books Do you have small children or early readers in your life? This book about Trixie and her teddies is a perfect addition to every child’s book collection. Trixie is a girl who loves her teddies and because of this love she receives several teddies over the years. The best part of this story is the lesson that Trixie learns, thanks to the help of her mother. Trixie learns about giving and how it can be rewarding, which is a great lesson for all children. This book is fun story, and is great as a read a loud. It includes themes such as philanthropy and generosity while simultaneously promoting the value of less clutter in your living space. If you would like to win a copy of Too Many Teddies, please enter with the Giveaway Tool below! This giveaway is open to all US residents, ages 18 and older. The giveaway will run from March 10, 2014 through March 24, 2014 at 11:59 PM PST. Entries will be verified. Winner will be notified via email, and will have 48 hours to respond and claim their prize or another winner will be selected. Good luck! Entry-Form Gwen from The Gemini Mama received a copy of this book to facilitate her review, no other compensation was received. Raising Soldiers 4 Christ, and all participating blogs are not responsible for prize fulfillment. This giveaway is in no way associated with social media sites including Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.
This post is going to be short today. I spent a lot of time this weekend preparing for my Modesty and Prom post. Our church also started revival today and I am exhausted :). Today I wanted to be comfortable yet look nice for church. In between services we went to a party, so I needed something I could wear all day. Hat: Fred Myer found on clearance Blue Undershirt: Halftee Pink Tank: I wore this because I felt the blue shirt I wore was to thin. I have NO idea where I got this tank at. Maybe the Exchange? Blue shirt with the tie strings: Goodwill, it is Anne Taylor brand though. I scored it for $2.00 Red Sweater: Bought at Old Navy for $5 Skirt: Zulily Boots: Zulily Make-Up: Arbonne Today’s sermon was so powerful, I may share it next week with you. I have a whole lot of exciting things planned and coming to the blog. What would you like to see? Comment and share :). Also, are you subscribed? If not go ahead and do that so you won’t miss a post! In CHRIST, Laura
Today has been a day, whoo-boy. I went into it a little bit on instagram, but I don’t feel like going into it right now. Maybe next week, when it is a far, distant memory. For now, let’s look at some photos from a quiet moment, when The Bean took forever to eat his dinner, […]
Does your teen have a daily devotional that they enjoy? Something that will help teach them the importance of daily Bible reading times? Check out Amazons review:
One of America’s favorite pastors, Max Lucado offers his first 365 devotional for teens, encouraging them to trust God and His perfect plan for their lives.
Life is hard, and today’s teens could use daily guidance and reassurance that God is with them, through it all and despite it all. In One God, One Plan, One Life, bestselling author Max Lucado offers teens an accessible way to connect with their Lord. Daily devotions address such topics as faith and obedience but also offer wisdom on topics that teens battle, such as purity, bullying, alcohol and drug use, and self-image. Each day includes a short devotion and accompanying scripture as well as a take-away application that will inspire and challenge teens to trust in God and His plans for them.
One God, One Plan, One Lifehelps teens to cut through life’s distractions and rely on the one thing that is truly important—a relationship with God.
Features & Benefits:
Max’s first 365 devotional for teens and tweens
365 scriptures, devotional thoughts, and life-shaping applications
Encourages daily quiet time and developing a personal relationship with God
My husband and I looked through this book and while it is a good devotional, there were some things we had issues with.
I didn’t like the dates on the devotional. I would rather have the days say: day 1, day 2 and so on. Instead of January 1, January 2 etc.
We don’t care for the Bible versions used, but that may be trivial for some.
There are a couple of the devotions we were iffy on.
All in all though this is a really good devotional for teens and we will for sure be keeping it on the shelf for our boys. I give it a 4/5
When you are so tired that you can barely keep your eyelids open and you look at the clock at its only 2:30 in the afternoon. All you want is a nap and maybe a little peace and quiet but yet you get 12 hours of your name being called every 5 minutes over this and that. You are worn down to a nub. You have been up since 4 am thanks to a child with SPD and the inability to go back to sleep..
"Momma, please.. Momma?"
Momma is tired. Momma is worn down.
I haven't stopped since the day you were born. I have made sure that you are comfortable. That you are taken care of. Every night when I kiss you goodnight, I make sure that one by one everyone who is important for you to find slumber are comfortable. I re assure you that this house is protected by a force field that Daddy put up before he left, so that the monsters are kept at bay. I make sure that when I tuck you in, under the many blankets, that you are warm.I read you the same book we always read every single night pretty much since you came into this world. I make sure the night light is on, so when you get startled in the night its there to comfort you. I make sure you know that you are loved by many. And I bid you Goodnight.
You might think that once you begin your journey off to the land of magical school buses, unicorns and the Toy Story gang, that my day is done. I wish it was. I sit for the five minutes of quiet to collect my thoughts, then I begin my task of making sure your reality is a better one. I sit and worry about what is coming next. What is going to be on your path. I worry about tomorrow, I worry about next week and I worry about years from now. I do this because I am your parent. Its what I do. I make sure that life will be as smooth as I can make it for you. I make sure that I am prepared for what ever fight I need to fight for you, just so you have a champion in your corner.
You might think that once my head hits my pillow, my mind goes to sleep. It doesn't. All those worries and fears manifest into this beast. All those what ifs and should have, could have and would haves eat away at me. I worry if what I am doing isn't enough. Maybe I should be doing more.I worry about how I can make this world right for you. I worry that I can't always be there for when you need someone. I worry that if I don't push you hard enough that you will not learn the task in front of you.I worry about the day that will come when you don't need me anymore. Not because I don't think you will survive, but I worry that I won't survive. As you have been my job since you were a thought in my head.
I will awake when you do. When it is 4 am or later. I will soothe your bad dreams away. I will calm you when you need it. I will take all of your worries away, so you don't lose sleep.
"Momma, please Momma!"
Momma is tired. Momma is worn down, but I will do what you ask of me. Child, I will put away my tiredness. I will put my worries on hold, if you wanting me to join you in your happiness, I will do so. As you are my child, my world, and your happiness is number one before my tiredness. And for that I love you.
Do you have small children or early readers in your life? This book about Trixie and her teddies is a perfect addition to every child’s book collection. Trixie is a girl who loves her teddies and because of this love she receives several teddies over the years. The best part of this story is the lesson that Trixie learns, thanks to the help of her mother. Trixie learns about giving and how it can be rewarding, which is a great lesson for all children. This book is fun story, and is great as a read a loud. It includes themes such as philanthropy and generosity while simultaneously promoting the value of less clutter in your living space.
If you would like to win a copy of Too Many Teddies, please enter with the Giveaway Tool below! This giveaway is open to all US residents, ages 18 and older. The giveaway will run from March 10, 2014 through March 24, 2014 at 11:59 PM PST. Entries will be verified. Winner will be notified via email, and will have 48 hours to respond and claim their prize or another winner will be selected.
Gwen from The Gemini Mama received a copy of this book to facilitate her review, no other compensation was received. Raising Soldiers 4 Christ, and all participating blogs are not responsible for prize fulfillment. This giveaway is in no way associated with social media sites including Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.
Today’s sermon was so powerful, I may share it next week with you. I have a whole lot of exciting things planned and coming to the blog. What would you like to see? Comment and share :). Also, are you subscribed? If not go ahead and do that so you won’t miss a post!
Today has been a day, whoo-boy. I went into it a little bit on instagram, but I don’t feel like going into it right now. Maybe next week, when it is a far, distant memory. For now, let’s look at some photos from a quiet moment, when The Bean took forever to eat his dinner, and I sat there and enjoyed the faces he made. He won’t be this little or silly forever, after all.
Nom nom nom toast with guacamole!
Buahahaha the BEST.
“Stop laughing at me!”
Please note Kipp in the background of this one, waiting patiently for The Bean to drop something.
I am sitting on the couch of my livingroom with the front door opened. I am doing something I normally don't do but today I let go and let someone else take charge. H is in the front yard with his three older siblings and his dog. I would never do this not with his inability to understand danger and his lack of ability to grasp our tone of voice to alert to danger or scary situations. Today though with the pleading of his two older sisters I caved. I let someone else take him outside and be responsible for him while I sat in the house. I am keeping him in a visual at all times but he is entranced at the moment.
Suddenly he is not compelled to run down the street or bolt from anyone. He is standing there on the porch engaged in a tube of bubbles with his sister. There is something about it, something about the interaction with this siblings that is different than the interactions with me or a teacher, he was engaged truly engaged in what Ella was doing with him. He wasn't looking for a distraction to make his break, he wasn't getting upset because she was distracting him from that break he wanted to make. What I saw at that moment was a boy and his sister sharing a true bond. I saw his hands flapping wildly, wide eyed anticipating the next big blow of bubbles to come. I saw a true calm come about him that I rarely ever see. He was relaxed in a way that he couldn't do when I tried to interact with him on that level.
I could get upset and offended at this scene unfolding in front of me. I could feel hurt that he can't do that with me like he does with her. I could lose myself in all that negativity or I could embrace a moment that I don't get to see all that often. I sit and stare and feel my smile growing. I see a calm on his face that lets me know he has made a connection and he is embracing this moment just like I am. I wanted to run and snap a photo of this curious, quizzical moment. I always take pictures its my schtick. There is always a photo to remember almost every single moment. However I let him have this moment. I let him have it intruded moment with his sister. I can close my eyes and see that face, those hands reaching out to explore and seek out the bubbles coming at him. The eye contact he engaged in with Ella. Neither one knowing just how important that was. I did though and I smiled from the sidelines and had my own moment without intruding upon theirs.
Sometimes these children open up when we least expect it. Sometimes they open up when they don't feel they are center stage spotlight and every moment is watched with an eagle eye. Ella was able to reach him on a level I have yet to reach him at. It was a carefree let's just be us and not world about the rest of the world around us. I have lost myself in their moment, basking in their laughter, their conversation, their true connection. The moment has now long passed and they have moved on to other things. I am still sitting here with that image smiling thinking of how all this happens, through his eyes.
It is that time of the year to start looking for dresses for your daughters! Dresses for proms, dresses for formals, dresses for semi-formals, it is such a wonderful time to make memories for daughters as well as mothers. It’s likely that you began shopping for dresses months ago. If you have already started this sometimes tedious process, I hope you will hear my heart in this post. Last year at prom time I sat scrolling down my news feed and my heart broke, literally broke!
My mom was not keen on any dances at school. She was raised to not participate in them, even though she did attend one prom herself, but not by choice. One of her classes required she attend prom and she had to fulfill the requirements in order to graduate. I, on the other hand, loved prom. It was was such an exciting time with my mom! I have so many memories of this time with her. The memories of all the talks we had while making the trip to Lexington to pick out my dress. I remember the vast selection and remember all the dresses I could picture myself in. One thing is for sure though, my mom and I was always modest in our selection. She was raised to be a modest woman and she raised me to be a modest woman. She was pretty strict on what I wore. As much as I surely can ride a horse and shoot a gun, and I enjoyed making my share of mud pies growing up, my mom raised me to be a lady. Part of being a lady is embracing femininity. Sadly, these days that seems to be a dying art.
As I sat scrolling through my news feeds and seeing the beautiful young ladies in their prom dresses, I began reading the comments left by various people. I was astonished, for lack of a better word. I wondered WHY my friends would allow their daughters to wear dresses like the ones I was looking at. Most of the dresses that I saw barely covered anything! These beautiful young ladies ranged in ages from middle school through high school. The comments I read included, “Wow! Look how hot!!!”, “You’re SMOKIN!!”, and “HOT!!!” Mommas, is that really how you want your daughters to be known? Even if she is a senior in high school, do you want her to be known by how “smokin” hot she was on prom? Why not be known as a beautiful young lady who looked like a lady?
I may ruffle some feathers over this post and I am sorry. I love you all no matter what clothing you or your children wear. Because I love you, I need to speak out about this. It was not so long ago that if a girl wore as little fabric as some most every girl did last year, they would be labeled some not so nice names….wait actually they still are. My friends, when a person looks at a picture of your daughters and posts “smokin hot”, they are not seeing her inner beauty; they are not even seeing her outer beauty. They are seeing a piece of “meat”.
The posts bothered me so much and I have prayed for these girls. What makes me the most sad is that every single picture I saw on my feed of girls like this were from Christian homes. What are we teaching our sons and daughters? I know that God loves us regardless of our clothing, but let us not forget the scripture and the teachings that we as mommas should pass on to our children, sons and daughters alike –women are to adorn themselves in modest apparel. This doesn’t say every night except prom, or if short sequence dresses are in style then it’s okay to toss it all in for one night. We are to adorn ourselves in modest apparel ALL the time.
You see, sisters and friends, we should be set apart as Christians, even at proms, formals and semi-formals. We are to be in the world but not OF the world. We have to take a stand, even during prom. If you are a mother, please teach your daughters that they must cover their bodies. They must keep their bodies sacred for their husbands. They must not follow the crowd. It is so important to teach them this. I know that it is hard being in school with peer pressure, especially for teens. I know they all want to fit in but they can still look absolutely beautiful at prom or any formal and still be covered. They can still go and have the time of their life, but they can do it and know their Lord is smiling down on them, seeing that they took a stand for what was right.
When did elegance and dressing like a lady get thrown out the window for prom? Here is a great article to read about someone else who asks this, too. Click HERE to read the article.
Recently, I posted an article for dressing appropriately for military formals and much of that applies to prom. While most girls wore very, very short dresses, strapless dresses baring cleavage and dresses with no sleeves last year to prom, evening attire for these formals should be longer lengths. Homecomings are generally where shorter dresses are worn, but they still should be a modest length and cover our bodies modestly.
Here is something else to think about. The Bible tells us to not be a stumbling block to others. Ladies, if you’re out at the mall and your husbands are lusting after a woman who was dressed in similar fashion to what the short skimpy styles are for prom, wouldn’t you have an issue with that? In this day and age men have enough problems with porn and lust. We should be taking great pains, especially those of us who are Christians, to not lay a trap for them. Many of the problems men have with porn starts as teens! So what are we doing to the young men at proms by sending them out to prom with a daughter that is barely dressed and expecting them to “behave themselves?” YES, men are accountable for their own sins. YES, men should be responsible for their own actions around young ladies. However, teen boys with raging hormones and barely dressed young ladies just do not mix! We like to assume that our daughters will make the right choices during this memorable evening, but the power of persuasion from peer pressure and young men with raging hormones can be difficult to overcome. This is a father’s nightmare because he remembers how he was at that age.
My husband remembers his prom vaguely. However, he does remember the level of respect and courtesy he had for the dresses his classmates wore to prom. He viewed the young ladies wearing the modest clothing as pure and innocent, but the young ladies wearing more provocative dresses as wild and hot. My husband is a stand-up man and a strong Christian raising our boys to be strong Christians. But as a teen with raging hormones, he was no different than the teens with raging hormones today. This is how boys think and this is how you must think when picking out the right dress.
Before I get into the rest of this post, I have another take on prom I want to share with you. This is where my mom got her thought about proms from and, honestly, this is something my husband and I will have to be in prayer about as our boys grow older.
Attention Young People and Parents! 5 Biblical Reason Why Saved Young People Should NOT Attend Prom: My intention is not to hurt feelings, argue, or upset, but rather to make aware of the dangers of taking part in things such as prom.
1. Audio- Eph. 5:19 Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;, Col. 3:16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. - You may argue that these verses do not command us not to listen to secular music, and you are right. These verses state that someone who wants to please the Lord, someone who is Spirit filled, and someone who is walking in truth will not want to listen to the music of this world! The music played at proms promotes sensuality, perverseness, promiscuity, drunkenness, drug use, rebellion, ungodliness, etc. Parents is that what you are wanting to instill in your children? We wonder why they go astray, but then we allow this trash music into the ears of our young people. Now there will be an argument over this point, and probably the others, that “you shouldn’t go to Wal-Mart because they play the same music!” Let me say to that that there is a big difference in being exposed to it and being acceptant to it. We can’t control what we are exposed to in the world, but that doesn’t mean we have to put our stamp of approval on it. We should go to all lengths to protect the innocence in the minds and hearts of our young people. Whether it’s rap, rock, or the good ole boy’s country music it’s all worldly and promotes everything the Word of God is against! I doubt they’ll be playing Amazing Grace at the prom this season!
2. Apparel- 1 Tim. 2:9 In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array;, 1 Peter 3:3-4 Whose adorning let it not be that outward [adorning] of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; But [let it be] the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, [even the ornament] of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. - Young ladies I plead with you “dress to be chaste, and not to be chased!” You may think less is best, but you have no idea what it does to the mind of a man. Shame on a daddy who will allow his daughter to go out with a boy for the night in tight, revealing, low-cut, and provocative clothing, and shame on the mama who promotes it and buys it. We are putting our daughters on display like they are some kind of sensual trophy! God help us! Young ladies I beg you to honor your body and give it to the Lord and the best way to do this is to cover it up. I’ve NEVER seen a modest prom dress. Young men by avoiding prom you are avoiding putting that temptation of lust and lasciviousness in your life. Modesty matters and it’s a matter of the heart!
3. Activities- 1 Cor. 7:1 Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: [It is] good for a man not to touch a woman., Col. 3:17 And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, [do] all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him., Prov. 6:27 Can a man take fire in his bosom, and his clothes not be burned? - What are the activities at prom? Well parents they’re not doing the boot scoot boogy! The most common form of dance today(which is promoted by all three genres I mentioned before) is what is called “bumping and grinding.” I’ll not iterate on this because of its vulgarity, but you can imagine what it means. Now according to the above verse(1 Cor. 7:1) “it is good for a man not to touch a woman.” This verse nor any of the others is up for debate. This verse means what it says and says what it means! When these young people are dancing they are going directly against the Word of God! You may say “David danced before the Lord” but my friend that was a holy dance! A dance of worship and reverence to the Lord. It was not a dance of sensuality like the dances of today. When these young people take part in these kind of dances they are taking fire in their bosom and they will be burned. Notice in the verse in Colossians that is says “[do] all in the name of the Lord Jesus” it’s gonna be real hard to convince God that this dancing can be done in the name of the Lord Jesus. 4. Availability- 1 Thess. 5:22 Abstain from all appearance of evil., 2 Tim. 2:22 Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart. 1 Tim. 4:12 Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity. - When you send your young person off to prom for the night you are giving them over to the wiles of the Devil! They will be presented with opportunities of sex, alcohol, drugs, etc. and they’ll be nothing you can do to stop it. You may say “I trust my teenager,” but the only problem with that is they are made out of the same flesh as we are, and they are just as wicked as we are! At prom teens are put in adult situations without the decision-making skills and judgement of an adult. They’ll be things they see at these proms they’ll unfortunately never forget. Is their purity worth it? Is their mind worth it? Is their future worth it? Certainly it is not! Parents please don’t corrupt your children with these events and young people make a decision on your own not to go! 5. Aftermath- Gal. 6:7-8 Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. - After prom parties, riding alone to and from prom, sensuality while there, opportunities to be sexually active that have never been presented before. These are the seeds that will be sown at prom. Seeds that are planted will come up! Harvest is coming! They’ll be overdoses, drunkenness, arrests, fornication, std’s, pregnancy out-of-wedlock, rape, drug use, and even death the nights of prom. You say “not my child!” I hope not, but why put them into the position to possibly be “that one” that falls. Children are a heritage from the Lord and are to be protected and nurtured; not fed to the Devil. I have story after story of young people and parents who said “not me and not mine,” but oh the mess they are in now! Young person if you miss prom you’re not missing out you are being spared! Parents do the right thing and avoid this thing called prom. Take a stand be different! Be a light for Christ! God bless and share this message to everyone you know. This quote was taken from Christ Chloe’ Hewett a Facebook brother in Christ and his website can be viewed by clicking HERE.
This is a special time for you and especially your daughters. Who wants to be the parent that forbid their daughter to attend prom? If you have prayerfully considered allowing your sons or daughters to attend prom, how do you find a modest prom dress? Here are some tips for both the parent and the daughter:
1. Know what true modesty is and what your limits are. Biblical modesty does state that the thighs should not be showing and that your chest should be covered. Those are private areas that should be reserved for your husband (someday girls!). If you are unsure on the level of modesty you should go to, I would encourage you to first speak with your parents or whomever is in authority over you. If you are married and reading this for a formal affair, ask your husband what he thinks. If your parent is not a Christian, you should still still ask for their opinion. I would also encourage you to find a Christian lady who dresses modestly that can mentor you and even assist you in picking out a modest dress that is in accordance with God’s Word.
2. Don’t go shopping until you have a modest dress in mind and you have a plan. If you go without knowing what is modest, you may make a purchase that you regret. When you get to the store, be upfront with the clerk and explain what you want and what your boundaries are. Tell the associate you are looking for a modest dress for your event and give a description of the dress (i.e. length, top, sleeves, etc). Take someone else with you that knows modesty. This will be a huge help!
3. Keep in mind that many dresses can be altered to be more modest. You can make necklines higher and lengths longer. You can also add fabric to places that need it. So keep that in mind as well.
4. I have found formal gowns that I loved, but were sleeveless. I use a shawl, shrug, or dressy jacket for more coverage. The use of any of these can bring out the color pattern of the dress or the shoes, plus it adds elegance.
5. Remember your actions at prom. If you get a modest dress and act provocative, all the hard work that went into you finding a modest dress will be all for nothing. Dress like a lady and act like a lady, too.
Here are some LOVELY prom dress choices: If you click the pictures they will take you to the original website or pinterest.
Welcome to another installment of “Clay’s Corner”. Thank you all for taking the time to read my posts on this blog. Thank you all for taking the extra time leaving a comment. I appreciate all your comments and feedback.
I’ve read many posts, news articles, comments and opinions regarding the accuracy and authority of the Bible. Naturally, this installment will be titled “Authority of the Bible.”
Authority of the Bible
What do we believe?
I must have stared at this question for at least 15 minutes (possibly shorter, possibly longer, but it felt like days). I thought to myself, “Well, duh, we all believe in God’s infallible Word that begins in Genesis and ends in Revelation.” So the question is not “What do we believe”, but rather, “Why we believe.“ I could find a host of scriptures that prove the authority of the Bible. However, I’m not going to. You’ll see why as you continue to read.
Here’s the deal. There are many books that claim to be the Word of God. The Koran claims to be the Word of God. The Book of Mormon claims to be the Word of God. The Hindus believe the Bhagavad Vita is the source of eternal truth. Karl Marx, with his atheistic world view, claimed his writing, the Communist Manifesto, was the ultimate truth.
We Christians believe the Bible to be the Word of God and the eternal source of truth we live by. How do we know the Bible is the Word of God? Can we actually prove that the Bible is truly the Word of God? With just a simple Yes or No, can you prove it? Think about that for a minute and let it register. Can you honestly prove that the Bible is truly the Word of God? If you were speaking to an atheist or a non-believer or someone of a different religion, could you prove to them that the Bible is truly the Word of God? If you picture yourself speaking to a non-Christian, how difficult would that be? The use of scriptures is invalid trying to prove your case because the non-Christian has their own verses from their specific “book”, or their own opinion based on scientific evidence or presumptions. So, back to the question, can you prove the Bible is truly the Word of God to any of the aforementioned people? The answer is YES. It is my intention to show you how and I hope to do just that. So pull up a chair, grab your Bible, sit back, eat some popcorn and enjoy.
Before I begin this written discussion on the authority of the Bible, let me first quote the words of Jesus found in John 15:18-19. Jesus warns his disciples about the attitude the world will have toward those who follow Him. Jesus says, “If the world hates you, know that it hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you were not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.” 1 Peter 5:8 states, “Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.”
What is vital to understand about these passages is the attitude of the world toward God. The world is in rebellion against God, and worldly people under the influence of Satan seek to destroy your faith.
In the light of the times we live in, it is important for Christians not only know what they believe, but, also, why they believe what they believe.
I once read an astounding statistic. It indicated that 80 percent of college-bound students who profess to be Christians leave for school and return home no longer believing in Christ. One of the reasons is this: when a student sits in class and hears the professor, faculty member, or another student discredit the Bible, the student doesn’t have a defense and is easily deceived into believing the Bible is no longer credible. This happens too often because Christians know what they believe, but not why they believe it.
In my experience, there is no book that is criticized and attacked more than the Bible. Many intelligent scholars have written books that attempt to discredit the authority of the Bible. This is another of Satan’s goals: to get man to doubt the Word of God. This is a goal that Satan achieved with Adam and Eve.
To counter this attack, we will study some of the evidence in the case proving the authority and divine origin of the Bible. This knowledge will enable us to make a solid defense of the faith when we are attacked.
In the history of man, there has not been a book that has rocked the world as has the Bible. The impact it has made is phenomenal. Some hail the Bible as the Word of God; others criticize and condemn it. With the Bible facing such opposition today, and with many other works claiming to be the “Word of God,” how do we know the Bible is the true Word of God? Let us take a look at the evidence.
The evidence for the authority of the Bible falls into two major categories: internal evidence and external evidence. Internal evidence is the evidence found within the Bible. External evidence is the evidence found outside the Bible, such as archaeology, science, philosophy, and ancient manuscripts. Let us first consider the internal evidences.
The first fact is that the Bible claims to be the Word of God. The authors knew they were writing the words of God, even though they often did not fully understand what they were writing. 2 Timothy 3:16 states, “All scripture is breathed out by God.” 2 Peter 1:21 states, “For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.” Jesus himself viewed the Old Testament as authoritative and quoted from it throughout His ministry. In fact, Jesus says in Matthew 5:17-18, “Do not assume that I have came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. For I assure you: Until Heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or one stroke of a letter will pass from the law until all things are accomplished.”
The Holy Spirit confirms to us that the Bible is the Word of God. John 16:13 states, “When the Spirit of Truth comes, He will guide you into all truth.” The Holy Spirit who convicts the world of sin also assures the believer that the Bible is God’s Word.
We have evidence concerning the transforming ability of the Bible. Hebrews 4:12 states, “For the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit.” Romans 12:2 states, “do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind.” The Word of God and the Spirit of God actually transforms the lives of people. The Bible has changed the lives of murderers, drug addicts, top government officials, business people, alcoholics, rapists, and students, just to name a few people from every walk of life who have been transformed by the Bible. No other book can make such a claim. This is because the Bible is not a mere book on good living, but is literally packed with power. It is the Word of God with the power to change lives.
The Bible covers hundreds of topics, yet it does not contradict itself. It remains united in its theme. “Well, what’s so amazing about that”, some may ask. To find out what’s so amazing about that, consider these facts.
The Bible was written over a span of fifteen hundred years (that’s 1,500 years).
The Bible was written by more than forty men from every walk of life. For example, Moses was educated in Egypt and became a prophet over Israel. Peter was a simple fisherman, Solomon was a king, Luke was a doctor, Amos was a shepherd, and Matthew was a tax collector. All the writers were of vastly different occupations and backgrounds.
The Bible was written in many different places. The Bible was written on three different continents: Asia, Africa and Europe. Moses wrote in the desert of Sinai; Paul wrote in a prison in Rome; Daniel wrote in exile in Babylon; Ezra wrote in the ruined city of Jerusalem.
The Bible was written under many different circumstances. David wrote during a time of war; Jeremiah wrote at the sorrowful time of Israel’s downfall; Peter wrote while Israel was under Roman domination; Joshua wrote while invading the land of Canaan.
The writers had different purposes for writing. Isaiah wrote to warn Israel of God’s coming judgment on their sin; Matthew wrote to prove to the Jews that Jesus is the Messiah; Zechariah wrote to encourage a disheartened Israel who had returned from Babylonian exile; Paul wrote addressing problems in different Asian and European churches.
If we put all these factors together, the Bible was written over a span of fifteen hundred years, by forty different authors, at different places, under various circumstances, and addressing a multitude of issues. It is amazing that with such diversity, there is such unity in the Bible. That unity is organized around one theme: God’s redemption of man and all of creation. Hundreds of controversial subjects are addressed and yet the writers do not contradict each other. The Bible is an incredible document.
Here’s an example: Take ten contemporary authors and ask them to write their viewpoints on one controversial subject. Would they all agree? No, we would have disagreements from one author to another. Now look at the authorship of the Bible. All these authors, from a span of fifteen hundred years, wrote on many controversial topics, and they do not contradict one another. Amazing, isn’t it?
It seems one author guided these writers through the entire process: the Holy Spirit. Allow me to repeat 2 Peter 1:21, “For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke form God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.” The unity of the Bible is just one more amazing proof of the divine inspiration and authority of the Bible.
Now, let’s take a look at the External Evidences of the Bible; that is, evidences found outside the Bible.
The first external evidence is the indestructibility of the Bible. The Bible is the most well-known book in the history of the world and no book has been attacked more than it. Skeptics have tried to destroy the authority of the Bible for the last eighteen hundred years (1,800). The Bible has undergone every kind of scrutiny possible from archaeology, science, philosophy, and computers. Yet, despite all these attacks, the Bible proves itself to be true again and again. Each time the skeptics have been wrong, and the Bible has proven itself true. Just the fact that the bible has remained steadfast in its authority after two thousand years is another piece of evidence supporting its divine origin.
The next source of external evidence comes from archaeology. Middle Eastern archaeological investigations have proven the Bible to be true and unerringly accurate in its historical descriptions. Nelson Glueck, a renowned Jewish archaeologist, states, “No archaeological discovery has ever controverted a biblical reference.”
Dr. William Albright, who was not a friend of Christianity and was probably the foremost authority in Middle Eastern archaeology in his time, said this about the Bible: “There can be no doubt that archaeology has confirmed the substantial historicity of the Old Testament.”
Here are a couple examples of the historical accuracy of the Bible.
A good example is found in Genesis 14. The Bible speaks of Abraham’s victory over Chedorlaomer and five Mesopotamian kings. For years, the critics stated that these accounts were fictitious and many people discredited the bible. In the 1960s, however, the Ebla tablets were discovered in northern Syria. The Ebla kingdom was a powerful kingdom in the twentieth century B.C. The thousands of Ebla tablets that have been discovered are records of its history. What is important is that many of these tablets make a reference to all five cities of the plain proving the Genesis 14 account to be accurate.
The story of Jericho recorded in the book of Joshua. For years skeptics thought the story of the falling walls of Jericho was a myth. However, in the 1930s, Dr. John Garsang make a remarkable discovery. He states, “As to the main fact, then, there remains no doubt: the walls fell outwards so completely, the attackers would be able to clamber up and over the ruins of the city.” This is remarkable because the city walls fell inward, not outward. The March 5, 1990 issue of Time Magazine featured an article called “Score One for the Bible.” In it, archaeologist Kathleen Kenyon claimed Jericho’s walls had fallen suddenly. Many scholars feel this was caused by an earthquake which may also explain the damming of the Jordan. Additionally, grain was discovered, which shows the city was conquered quickly. This find adds credence to the biblical account. Further study by Brian Wood found the date of the fall of Jericho to match the Bible’s date.
The Bible contains hundreds of prophesies which have come to pass. No book in history has ever come close to the Bible when it comes to fulfillment of prophecy.
The prophesies in the Bible are very specific and accurate. Nostradamus claims to have made hundreds of prophesies that have come true, but if you read his prophesies, you will find them to be vague and unclear. His symbols and language can be taken to mean a number of historical events. Unlike many such prophesies, biblical prophecy is very specific.
Here are some examples of fulfillment of prophecy.
1. In Ezekiel 26, which was written in 587 B.C., Ezekiel prophesies that the mighty city of Tyre would be destroyed. Tyre was made up of two parts, a mainland port city and an island city half a mile off shore. Ezekiel predicted mainland Tyre would be destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar, many nations would fight against her, the debris of the city would be thrown into the ocean, the city would never be found again, and fishermen would come there to lay their nets. In 573 B.C., Nebuchadnezzar destroyed the mainland city of Tyre. Many of the refugees of the city sailed to the island and the island city of Tyre remained a powerful city. In 333 B.C., however, Alexander the Great laid siege to Tyre. Using the rubble of mainland Tyre, he built a causeway to the island city of Tyre. He then captured and completely destroyed the city.
Today, Tyre is a small fishing town where fishing boats come to rest and fishermen spread their nets. The great ancient city of Tyre to this day lies buried in ruins exactly as prophesied. If we were to calculate the odds of this even happening by chance, the figures would be astronomical.
2. There are over three hundred (300) prophesies made of Jesus in the Old Testament. Prophesies such as His place of birth, how He would die, His rejection by the nation of Israel, and so on. All these prophesies were made hundreds of years before Jesus ever came to earth. Because of the accuracy of the prophesies, many skeptics have believed that they must have been written after 70 A.D. – after the birth and death of Jesus and the destruction of Jerusalem. They have, thereby, tried to deny that they are even prophesies.
However, in 1947, the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered. These scrolls contained the book of Isaiah and other prophetic books. When dated, they were found to be written from 120 to 100 B.C., well before Jesus was born. It would have been an incredible accomplishment for Jesus to have fulfilled all three hundred prophecies. Some say these prophesies were fulfilled by chance, but the odds for this would be exceptionally large. It would take more faith to believe in that chance happening than in the fact that Jesus is God and these prophesies are divinely inspired.
No book can match the Bible when it comes to prophecy. Understand that I have only touched the tip of the iceberg. I have only mentioned a few of the evidences to prove the authority of the Bible.
One thing I hear from family and friends over and over is, “I can’t believe you do everything you do!” Well my confession today is that I don’t do it well. I try to do so many things and end up running around like a chicken with my head cut off. It’s not a pretty analogy, but very fitting when describing almost every single day of my life. The chaos has slowly been swirling around me and finally culminated to me being so frustrated the other night that I wanted to just sit down and cry. What finally led me to this you ask?!?! It was a number of things, but the final straw was when Brian was looking through my felt stash and I knew he was looking for the train set I had made him.
Where is it? I still don’t know. I’ve searched in several places and it hasn’t turned up yet. The last time I saw it was when I was planning to take it to our first dinner outing with Mater and the trainers. At the last minute, I decided it would make Brian stim too much and might lead to a meltdown, so I left it at home. Where I put it remains a mystery.
The bigger point is that the chaos kept compounding until it finally overtook me and I had to admit to myself that doing a ton of things poorly was much worse than picking one or two things at a time and doing them well. I’ll admit that I’m a self professed overachiever in certain areas of my life, but at the same time let other areas completely fall apart (mainly my house). I wish I had enough time and patience to be an overachiever at everything but during this period of my journey it’s just not a possibility.
The positive and brilliant light at the end of the tunnel is that I realize my house of chaos is something I can overcome and have started the process by joining some friends in doing the 40 Bags in 40 Days challenge. You can read more about the challenge HERE.
The challenge started March 5th and we’re 4 days in today.
Day 1 and 2:
1 box and 1 bag to Goodwill, 1 bag of trash and 1 bag of plastic bags taken to recycling
Day 3 and 4:
1 bag to goodwill, 1 bag of coffee cans/egg cartons, shoe boxes going to a good home and 1 huge bag of trash consisting of broken toys/missing pieces/etc
Laundry room after throwing everything on the counter during the past several weeks.
Tired of not being organized!!!
Laundry room after taking the time to put things in their proper location.
Feeling sooooo much better!!! Sorry it’s a bad picture because I took it with my phone.
I’m starting to get control over the house and am absolutely LOVING decluttering!!!
7 bags GONE…..33 to go!
Let me know if you’re up for the challenge and post some pictures of your progress on my “Life of Bri” Facebook page.
My time as co-host for Currently is done now, as Randalin has come back from her maternity leave. Welcome back, and thanks, Lindsey, for letting me co-host for a while!
This week, we’ve been…
Declaring that bedtime is never. Ok, maybe just for the past few days? It seems like the boys just don’t want to go to sleep, or they are really tired and take a late nap, and that messes up their sleep. Either way, bedtime has been a mess lately. Right now, they’re watching Super Why while I type this. At almost 9:30pm. I’m giving myself some major side eye for allowing this, but it’s better than the crying, or the coming into my room incessantly. (Guess which kiddo was doing which.)
Saving box tops. I used to give them to John’s mom, who is a teacher, but she is retiring this year. I guess I’d better see if The Munchkin’s teacher collects them… I meant to ask her at our parent/teacher conference yesterday, but forgot.
Demolishing nice, quiet games? The school has been working on getting The Munchkin to be more assertive, and that basically seems to translate to BRAT when he’s home. If he’s playing with something, and The Bean comes over to play with him, (Which he always does, because the boy loves his big brother.) The Munchkin starts yelling “No, Bean. No, Bean! No, Bean. No no no no NO BEAN!” and I want to shoot someone. I explained to him that he has to tell The Bean more; like…no, what, for example. That just changed his yelling to “No, Bean. Stop, Bean. My toy, Bean, no! Mine, mine, it’s mine! NO!” *sigh* At least these are typical three year old problems?
Sniffing little boy butts. Poomageddon is still in full swing over here. No one is happy about it.
Despising different things, depending on who we’re talking about. The boys are despising diaper changes right now because they both have some gnarly diaper rash going on. I swear, The Bean has PTSD because of it, and The Munchkin actually cries out for help during his… Public diaper changes are not fun. I am despising not having enough “me” time. I can either do all my housewife/mom duties, or I can do my own thing. Not both. Or, I could wake up earlier, but hahaha yeah. I wouldn’t enjoy anything I did while up early. John has some shoulder problems right now that might require surgery, so I would guess that’s what he despises at the moment.
That our sons may be as plants grown up in their youth; that our daughters may be as corner stones, polished after the similitude of a palace Psalm 144:12
I am so excited to review this devotional for kids. I love having good devotional material available to for my kids to read. Cassie & Caleb- Discovering God’s Wonderful Design is wonderful! The age recommendation for this book is perfect for ages 5-8. Kids will love the fun, energy, and inquisitive nature of Cassie & Caleb as they discover the beauty of God’s Wonderful Design.
In this book there are 20 wonderful stories in this devotional. They are each wonderfully illustrated and you will love how they draw you in. I love that they are not to short for a child who is growing and able to listen longer, but they are not so long they get bored. At the end of each story there is a “Let’s Talk” section where parents can discuss what the lesson was about, a scripture to bring the lesson together and show God’s word, and a prayer.
The creational principle that “God created man in his own image . . . male and
female he created them” (Genesis 1:27) is extraordinary!That Jesus is in
all of Scripture. The Bible is not a collection of disconnected stories; it is the
one big story of the Triune God redeeming His people.God’s Word is our
authority and His Glory is our purpose.That when we belong to Jesus we
belong to His covenant family, the Church. A Biblical framework for
living and thinking.
The authors do not underestimate the power of
the Holy Spirit in the heart and mind of a child. This book intentionally uses the
rich language of faith, and then builds meaning around the words and concepts as
the stories proceed, providing children the words of life.
You can buy a copy of this wonderful book by clicking the links on this post or here:
Western Chief Kids is introducing the new Flash ‘N Splash Light Up Rain Boots in four different styles for Spring 2014, and they’re a big hit! It’s no wonder! What kid doesn’t love light up shoes? Now they can have rain boots that light up every time they stomp and jump in puddles? It’s a dream come true! When Emilee from Pea of Sweetness was introduced to them she thought she would even love a pair in her size!
Although they don’t make them in her size, she received a pair for their preschooler to review. Besides when he is nice enough to lend them to his big sister for some fun, he is almost always wearing them – or wanting to wear them! He loves that they’re soft inside, and he can pull them on by himself with the pull handles! See more in her full Flash ‘N Splash Light Up Rain Boots Review.
If you know a child that would love these boots as well, here is your chance to win a pair! This giveaway begins on 3/6 at 7:00pm and ends on 3/20 at 11:00pm (times are Central) and is open to US residents ages 18+. Winner will have their choice of style and size. * Exact style and color subject to availability. Please refer to the full terms and conditions in the Giveaway Tools.
I want to begin by saying that I am NOT a fantasy book reader. I have enjoyed the Narnia books, but that is as far as I would go.:)
My oldest, however, loves reading fantasy books, but we really have to be careful what he is reading because of the content for his age. We also have some strict boundaries about what can and cannot be read in our house. So when I was asked to be on the review team for this book, I was thrilled!!!
After the brutal massacre in his village, a broken, grieving boy chooses to live with a golden dragon in the wild rather than go to the mountains to be with his own people. If only he had known then what that choice would mean.
Thirteen years later, Keegan, no longer a boy, learns that his younger sister survived the massacre and sets off to be reunited with her. When Keegan accidentally interrupts a plot against a princess, his simple trip turns into a complicated struggle for survival. A mysterious elder appears, full of wit and riddle. Mythical monsters shed their fictional skin and hungrily pursue Keegan and his dragon. Haunting nightmares begin to tear at his mind. As he continues on his quest to be reunited with his sister, Keegan is only just beginning to understand what it means to be…
Some of the things that I really loved about this book are:
It was very easy to follow-even for me a non Sci-Fi kind of gal!
This book does not contain any content I would be afraid for my oldest to read.
This book contains some slight violence. Nothing too graphic for me to keep my 10 year old from reading it. However, you know your children better than anyone and how they will react to reading it. There is nothing over the top or graphic.Here is some wonderful information to help you get to know the author…..
I think it was when I saw the movie “Dragonheart” as a young child. I thought then how unique it was for a man and a dragon to work side-by-side and how rare it was to hear such a story. It had been the first story I had ever heard where a dragon was good, not bad. I decided I wanted to start making stories about good dragons after that.
What is the most challenging part of writing for you?
Actually sitting down, doing it, and then COMPLETEING it. I find that it is very hard for me to complete something. I get a story rolling, and then another idea bursts into my head and I have to turn it into a story and write it down. Then another idea rolls in and I have to write it down, followed by another, and another, and another. I really have to chain my brain down to the book at hand to get anywhere. People can’t read my stories if they are only half-way finished!
Who is your favorite author?
This is a mean question. I like many different authors.
I like Frank Peretti and J.R.R. Tolkien because they are really deep, intense, and dark… without being evil. I like to read their work when I am in a darker mood.
I also really like Bryan Davis. I’ve never seen another author weave a story like he can. He creates a labyrinth and takes his reader on a twisty-turny high paced adventure through it! I read his books when I am in a bold sort of mood and have a lot of energy to burn on adrenaline. I will actually scream at his characters while I am reading, and that burns up a lot of this couch potato’s energy!
What books have influenced you most?
That is a tough question, especially since I read ALL THE TIME.
I think J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit made the most impression as far as solid plots and character building. Frank Peretti probably influenced my writing style the most though.
What kind of research did you do for this book?
Minimal. That is what I love about fantasy: you create your own world, people, culture, and history. You make it up. However, that being said, I did use a lot of what I have learned through the years from school and from personal experiences. Take the horses in my book, for example. I have worked with horses for most of my life, so I naturally used what I know about them and put it in my book. There was no research done, but I took a LOT of my own experience and knowledge and put it into the book.
What is the biggest lesson you have learned through this process?
It only took me three years to figure it out, but when I sent my book to the editor I finally learned the cold, hard truth: my editing skills…I’ve never had them.
When and where do you usually write?
When? Whenever the inspiration hits me, or when I want the inspiration to hit me. Sometimes I just have to sit down and start writing something – anything – to get inspired and start working.
Where? On my bed. My bed and I have a long history of writing together.
What are your plans for the future?
I plan to write more books and learn how to sketch people so I can draw my own characters someday in the far, far future.
What advice would you give to aspiring authors?
Sooooo….. you want to be an author?
Step 1: Learn HOW to write. Real writing is not just spelling correctly or knowing how to put a sentence together. Real writing is knowing how to express, describe, and feel things using words. Go read your favorite books and analyze them. Figure out WHY they are your favorites. SEE how the author made it real to you. How did they put the plot together? How did they flesh out their characters?
Step 2: START WRITING! Keep a journal. Write in it everyday. Describe how you feel that day, what happened to make you feel that way, and how it is affecting you. Look at pictures. Write down what you see and how that picture makes you feel. Be detailed! And of course, start writing your stories, whatever they are. Short, long, happy, sad, weird, incomplete – just start writing. Find your groove. And keep it up.
Step 3: FINISH writing. You can’t become an actual author unless you publish something, and you can’t publish something unless you have something to publish, and you won’t have something to publish if you didn’t finish writing your story. So FINISH IT! And don’t get discouraged. I have to tell myself this often.
I would recommend this book to my Sci-Fi loving friends! I give this book a 4/5.
If you would like to purchase this book, please click the following links:
***I received this book for free as part of the review crew for an honest and fair review.***
I wasn't going to write anything for today. As there are so many fantastically written pieces already out there. But I feel like I owe to you and myself to write something.
I can only echo what has already been said. There are certain words within our vocabulary that are very outdated. These terms are often used as an instrument of insult. "Retard", "Nigger", "Faggot" "Kike" just to name a few. Sadly the list goes on. With today being the Spread the Word to end the Word, I think it should to be changed to Spread the Word to end all Words.
The nature of an insult can do a number on your psyche, which is why it gets said.There are so many unkind words that get said because people don't understand. As that is what it comes down to. A bully isn't going to fully understand the impact of their words, until they are on the receiving end of the what is being said.And until we start standing up to those who use such insults that were mentioned. Trying to stop the words from being part of our vocabulary is only part of the equation. The other part is standing up to the bullies that use them. If people were more educated about things, imagine how the world would be? But since a lot of people are unwilling to teach themselves, this is going to be a vicious cycle, that keeps going on and on.
I see the hurt in both a child's eyes as well as the parent's eyes when words are used against them. Every time I hear people use outdated slurs it makes me wonder just how much our society has come. Some days I think "Oh how marvelous that we have all this information so readily in front of us, there is no excuse" But then I think.. "Ignorance is a choice." People choose to say the words. Which is very sad. Its sad to me that Human Beings are the most intelligent species on this planet, but yet there are times were we are taught compassion by those species who have lower brain power. Compassion for your fellow human being. What a concept. But yet some many have no idea how it feels.
You feel small. Worth nothing. Like you have no more air to breathe because you don't think you are worth it. If this person thinks that, then everyone else must too. You look in the mirror everyday to try and convince yourself that have a rightful place on this earth. But you see that gets flushed down the toilet at the mention of a derogatory insult. What should it matter to you if I learn differently, practice religion differently, live my life differently or if my skin is different from yours. Am I not just the same as you? A Human being?
So on the day of Spread The Word to End the Word. I challenge people to discard their racist, bigotry, discriminatory and stereotypical ways of thinking, stop using words that are harmful. Stop bullying someone in order for you to feel better. Take a minute and think back to time where you felt small because of harmful words that were said to you. Be the change you want the world to see. And if you have never had an experience like that, well come sit next me and I will tell you all about how that feels.
This is a guest post written by my friend, Aprille from Beautiful in His Time. She’s sharing an update on our situation from her perspective as my friend.
She tells me words I can’t pronounce.
She already has one child with special-needs. He needs therapies and extra attention, and now her three-month-old daughter is showing the signs of neurological problems, birth defects, and extenuating needs.
Her plate, already so full with a child with autism and a newborn, has now had more heaped upon it as she’s seeking for a diagnosis and help for her daughter.
She needs help. People to watch her son, people that can learn how to feed her daughter so she won’t aspirate. Her husband is missing more and more work because she simply can’t do it all.
And I can’t help because I’m nearly 400 miles away and we’ve never even met. I’ve gotten angry with her and for her. I wonder why God would pile more on her plate. I can’t fathom the burdens she carries, looking into the eyes of now two precious babies knowing that there’s just something wrong, some way they need help.
I scrawled these words in a notebook two weeks ago. Since then, more has happened to my friend and her sweet family. They have spent now close to a week in the hospital. Kathryn has been separated from her son so that she can care for her daughter. They have just gone through so much!
On Thursday, baby Liz had an endoscopy, after going nine hours without eating because of delays at the hospital. Kathryn said this after the endoscopy around 9PM on Thursday night:
“They didn’t find anything but are waiting on the biopsy results.
Since she was choking and vomited once they are re-doing the NJ tube and want to see how she does over the weekend. If she continues to choke and aspirated with that then they want to do surgery to insert a more permanent g-tube in the stomach. If she does good with NJ tube then they will send us home to do half tube feeding and half bottle feelings.
They inserted the NJ tube during the procedure, but after they have to do an x-ray to make sure it’s right then find a doctor to approve it. It took two times and two x-rays. And she’s now eating by tube for the first time since 8 this morning.”
On Friday, they got set up at the Ronald MacDonald house so that Kathryn could get some sleep and a chance to visit with Adam.
“Elizabeth is doing ok today. She has caught a bad cold so they are doing a flu and RSV swab and an x-ray to make sure she didn’t catch Adam’s bronchitis or anything else.
Today has mostly been about getting our questions answered which can be quite impossible around here, but we finally have some more answers. She was still choking so they gave her some meds starting this morning to dry up her salvia a little more so she is not choking/aspirating on that. Since she has been on it she has not had any episodes.”
Friday night, Kathryn got her first night of sleep in a real bed after three nights sleeping in the hospital.
“First time seeing Adam in 4 days! We had a blast playing at the Ronald McDonald House!”
On Saturday, she got to visit with Adam and learned how to feed Liz through the tube:
“Liz will be on this feeding tube until we get more answers and I also have a 3 year old who is still being spoon-fed. We will still be traveling all over for follow-ups with 4 different specialists and Adam still has 15 hours of therapy a week and morning school 5 days a week. The problem is coordinating all this and getting enough help to do it all.
I haven’t been home, but I’ve been told that my amazing sister-in-law has been cleaning our house and keeping up with laundry. I’m hoping the feeding tube wont be a lot of work at home and somehow I will manage to have to time to keep up with housework.
There is still a lot of possibilities in the future for Liz. Surgery is one of them. We are just taking it one day at a time.”
On Sunday, they prepared to go home:
“I got trained on the feeding tube yesterday and it’s looking a little easier than I thought. There is a lot to do and remember, but we should be fine. She will be hooked up to it 24/7. It’s going to be interesting going everywhere with this thing in and carrying it all around.
Liz is doing ok. She had a very bad choking episode yesterday afternoon, but that was the first one in awhile. She will be going home on the medicine that drys up her saliva so she is not choking/aspirating on that. They said there should be very few choking episodes, but to continue logging because depending on how many she has she will need surgery. Liz still has a bit if a cold and has been in serious pain from gas. Just been given her gas drops in her tube around the clock, but they think it’s just from everything going on. Please pray it gets better.”
Upon their return home, Liz started choking again and they were reminded that they needed to get her special medicine. But, they found out that there is a national shortage of the medication. They couldn’t get it at CVS so had to go BACK to the hospital, only to find out that Tricare was refusing to pay for the medication. They paid for three days worth of the medication out of pocket.
Liz continued to choke and had 10-15 choking episodes within a 3 hour period, so they took her back to the hospital on Monday, where they remain now.
Liz will be having laparoscopic surgery called Fundoplication later on this week (tentatively Friday) to help with the reflux and hopefully the aspiration.
“During surgery they will insert a G-tube for feeding. This will help with recovery and with her current feeding issues. How long she is on the G-tube is dependent upon how everything goes and what the feeding therapist wants to do from here on out.
We will stay here until then and recovery takes about 2-3 days afterward depending on how she does.
Right now we are concerned about her weight as she has lost 5 oz in the past week, and no one has any idea why since she is on a feeding tube. She is supposed to be gaining at about 1 ounce a day, but she has almost lost that much. They upped her NJ tube feeds from 30 to 35 so we will see if that makes a difference.”
Dear Kathryn’s friends and readers:
I really don’t think there are any words to really express how hard these last few weeks have been on Kathryn and her family. I would request, as one of her friends, that you lift her and her family up in prayer as much as you can. If you know her personally / locally, please check out her personal Facebook page for a link to the meal train (posted on March 2), or consider visiting her in the hospital. Bring some flowers to brighten the hospital room. Hospital food is not the best, so perhaps bring her some healthy snacks, drinks, or a cup of coffee. I’m sure she could use the company and encouragement.
If you would like to send a card or do something financially for Kathryn and her family (such as a gift card), you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will get you details on that. This is not something she has asked for – this is me speaking as her friend who knows that money is tight and only getting tighter with all of these circumstances!
In gods at war, Kyle Idleman, bestselling author of not a fan, helps every believer recognize there are false gods at war within each of us, and they battle for the place of glory and control in our lives. What keeps us from truly following Jesus is that our hearts are pursuing something or someone else. While these pursuits may not be the ‘graven images’ of old, they are in fact modern day idols. Behind the sin you’re struggling with, the discouragement you’re dealing with, the lack of purpose you’re living with is a false god that is winning the war for your heart. According to Idleman, idolatry isn’t an issue—it is the issue. By asking insightful questions, Idleman reveals which false gods each of us are allowing on the throne of our lives. What do you sacrifice for? What makes you mad? What do you worry about? Whose applause do you long for? We’re all wired for worship, but we often end up valuing and honoring the idols of money, sex, food, romance, success and many others that keep us from the intimate relationship with God that we desire. Using true, powerful and honest testimonies of those who have struggled in each area, gods at war illustrates a clear path away from the heartache of our 21st century idolatry back to the heart of God — enabling us to truly be completely committed followers of Jesus.
If you have read Not A Fan, then you don’t want to miss out on God’s At War. Kyle Idleman has gone and done it again with this amazing book. I think this is a resource that everyone will want in their library, especially if you work with teens, young adults, college students and/or involved in the ministry.
Idleman begins with asking great questions:
What disappoints you?
What do you complain about the most?
Where do you make financial sacrifices?
What worries you?
Where is your sanctuary?
What infuriates you?
What are your dreams?
Idleman rightly states that these things are not bad in and of themselves. It is good and well to dream, to seek sanctuary. The primary issue is when these felt needs are ultimate as compared to eternal needs.
Here are some things that are addressed:
Idols are ANYTHING that is more important than God
Money, Greed, and Debt can all be idols
“Good times” such as drugs, drinking and sexual immorality are all idols
People can become an idol
Work can become an idol
Living in fantasy vs reality can be an idol
I think this book is very important for all of us in this day and age. We should not just feel bad about sin but we must realize that we cannot do certain things and engage in certain behaviors. However, there is so much more going on than what is good and what is bad. The answer is simple: Idolatry. If you have accepted Christ as your personal savior, you simply cannot live on both sides of the fence. You must decide. God does not want your spouse, career, children, pleasure, control and other activities or behaviors to root in and take His rightful place in your life. So why do WE allow them to take control? Because simply put they become idols. Yes, even Christians with good intentions can have idols.
I highly recommend this book! I give it a 5/5.
You can purchase God’s at War by clicking here:
*** I received this book for free from BookLook For Bloggers for an honest and fair review***
For your 90th birthday party everyone wrote down their favorite 'Memory with Millie' on a 5x7 card and Toni made a beautiful book for you. You will not find my memory inside your book because I couldn't think of one big memory....... because the truth is, I have millions and millions of memories with you- I couldn't pick just one.
While you lay in your hospital bed, in and out of sleep, I thought this might be a good time to tell you all my memories.....
You and I have similar memories of our grandmothers when it comes to baby dolls- Every Christmas, two very large brown boxes would come to the house from Grandma and Grandpa Shrum- I can still feel the excitement of the anticipation. We would take the presents out and lay them under the tree-They were usually the only presents under the tree until Christmas morning- And I know you probably sent them at least two weeks early because that's just how you are. I always knew the big square box for me was a baby doll-Was it going to be a Cabbage Patch or a Dream Baby this year??? I loved all my dolls and played with all of them until I was probably too old to be playing with dolls. In middle school, you and Grandpa moved to Grand Junction and you even gave me my own room that had a shelf that went all around the top of the room and we put my baby dolls on it- I loved that room.
For my 5th birthday(Adam's 11th/ Podge's 12th), you took us all to Disney World and spoiled us rotten. We had a huge party with presents everywhere- I remember the doll house you gave me with a bunch of perfect tiny furniture to put inside. I also remember the Annie doll... Remember her? She was SO cute with a little stuffed Sandy dog that fit in the pocket of her red dress-You have always been a great gift giver.
How about when you were George's nurse? You sewed my torn up teddy bear all back together and we even went shopping for two black buttons to replace his eyes because one was missing. Gosh, George would be long gone by now if it wasn't for you. (Yes, I'm 35 and I still have him.)
Or what about the time I was in high school and you took me shopping for my birthday? I picked out these shoes at Herberger's that you said looked like 'Cotton Pickin' shoes. I knew you hated them, but you STILL bought them for me........Now, THAT'S a grandmother.
I cannot eat mashed potatoes, okra, biscuits and gravy, or cantaloupe without thinking of you.
And who could forget the 'Ebie My Girl' bridal shower cake and the 'Hey Jes' graduation cake? If there was a graduation- You know Grandma Shrum made the cake.
You'll have to ask Toni about 'ROSA ROSA' and "Booooooooo, OOPS!, spill.' They are memories I have with Toni, but you have a large part in them.
And I think I remember these huge blocks of cheese you use to send us..... and California Raisin figurines????...... I believe you worked at a grocery store and handed out samples? I'm not sure, I just remember eating a lot of cheese.
Some of my favorite memories has been watching you be a great grandmother to all of our kids. Shayne took her first steps at your house in Zephyrhills. Grandpa drove us around in his golf cart and he wouldn't stop feeding her cantaloupe. You taught me how to make an apple pie and biscuits and gravy on that trip, but the biscuits were hard has rocks because Grandpa kneaded the dough too long. Ha! Remember that?
Remember the night Shayne and I stayed at your house in Longmont and it snowed? Shayne hadn't seen snow in a very long time because we were living in Hawaii. You were just as excited as she was. We went around the house and took pictures of the both of you in the beautiful Colorado snow.
Push Rummy, Spite and Malice, Sequence, crochet slippers, cardigans, ponchos and Barbie doll clothes are what I remember most. Thank you for being the ever present grandmother. I know I took you for granted, and I'm truly sorry for that. I'm sure you've forgiven me by now, but I wanted you to know how much I do appreciate you and how grateful I am to have a grandmother like you. I'm one of the blessed ones.
It's hard for me to think of you sick and weak in that hospital bed. You are the epitome of strength for me-I've never known a tougher broad. I only hope I have the quarter of your strength and can somehow be half the grandmother to my grandchildren one day, as you are to me.
For the past week I have only been home once. I have been living in the hospital and partially at the Ronald McDonald House nearby. Hospital living is not what I expected. Of course no one wants to have to stay at a hospital, but looking back I thought that getting the help we needed through staying at a hospital, would be great.
Don’t get me wrong, I am glad we are getting help, but the part about living here and dealing with the every day unknowns is the hardest part for me.
I sleep in a chair every night that folds out into some kind of “bed.” Let me just tell you, this thing is as hard as a rock. Between the nurses coming in every hour or so, the beeping of the monitors and the slamming of doors, sleep here is almost impossible.
Every morning a floor doctor is supposed to come in and talk to us about the plan of care for the day. Sometimes that happens, sometimes that doesn’t. I just get dressed and hope that it does. Every few hours a tech comes in to do weight and temperature checks. A lady named “Nettie” has been our tech for awhile now and she is the sweetest little woman you will ever meet.
My daughter is continuously hooked up to about ten different cords. One being an IV, two being a feeding tube, and several more monitoring everything the hospital can possibly think of. It’s hard to move her from place to place or even play with her without a cord coming apart, or ripping off the tape from her little body. Let’s just say that with all these cords, diaper changes are quite the work out.
After 4 days here, we finally asked if it was okay to give my daughter a bath since no one had told us otherwise. Thankfully, we were allowed to give her a sponge bath around every cord attached to her body.
In preparation for each test being ran (MRI, endoscopy, etc.), food is stopped anywhere from what they tell us is 4-6 hours before. The time they tell you a procedure will be done, is never the time it is actually done. In the end, both times they stopped her food came to at least 12 hours without food. That makes an entire 24 hour period in two days that she didn’t get any food.
We have learned that you never believe what anyone says, even the doctors because no one communicates here at the hospital and for the most part they are wrong. One person says you will go home tomorrow, another says after the weekend, another says probably today. I constantly have to make sure to keep track of everything, every choking/aspirating episode and that every medicine is given on time. I learned this after the one day no one knew if my daughter had been given her new medicine or not and no one could agree on what actually happened. Turns out, I was right.
One of the worst things about hospital living, is not being able to see my son. Due to flu season, no one under age 12 is allowed in the hospital. The only time I have ever been away from my son in his almost four years is when my husband and I went on a post-deployment vacation. Thankfully, the Ronald McDonald house has wonderful facilities: a playground and a playroom where I can see him and play with him. Since we live about 45 minutes away from the Children’s Hospital, he has only been able to come up once, but hopefully that will change in the coming days…
On top of a bad cold, my stomach has been sick from stress, nervousness, and from the constant barrage of fast food I have had over the past month or so with all the appointments leading up to the hospital visits and during. I am so thankful for the meals people have been making, and for the meals donated to the Ronald McDonald House.
While hospital living is not what I expected, we are taking control of our daughter’s health and taking it one day at a time. Sometimes I wonder why God chose us for this life. Why God thought it best to make us parents of two special needs children. We are not supposed to question God, but at times I do. While I love my kids and would never change having them even knowing everything I know now, there are some things I would change.
I would change the hurt I see, the struggles I see. I would change every hardship for them, every sickness taken on as my own, and every need I would want met. I would do anything to see them not have to struggle with things that are supposed to come naturally like eating, talking, and making friends.
I know that through it all I am blessed. I may spend my days doing hours of therapy with my kids, or hours working on teaching them how to eat. I may not get to go to parties, hang out with friends, get manicures and pedicures, or even have time to work out like I would like, but I am still blessed. I am blessed to be their mom. And nothing, NOTHING, will ever change that.
If you are just now reading this and trying to figure out what’s going on, catch up with it all here:
Sometimes I wish it were different. I would wake up and not have the challenges I currently have still in front of me. I have those moments where I want my deck of cards reshuffled.
For the record, I love my husband, I love my children and I love my family. But there are days where I wish I had all that, just playing a different game. There are times where having two autistic children is tough. There are times where having a child with ADHD is tough. And there are times where being military is tough. All of these factors make up my deck. There are days where I want to play all the spades, just so I don't have to deal with getting tag teamed by my children's special needs.Then there are the clubs. Where it feels like I have been beaten down by my cards.Its the diamonds and the hearts that keep this deck alive. The hearts remind me of all of the love that is shared and given. The diamonds are the good times. The joys, the victories. The moments that make this deck worthy. There are times where I feel that I am not playing with a full deck. Where there is more clubs and spades than there are diamonds and hearts. Sometimes the deck is stacked against me and the house wins. But there are days where I luck out and the deck is dwelt in my favor.
Its a silly little analogy. I know.
We take our deck that is given to us and we try to hard to sort them out. Hearts. Spades. Diamonds and Clubs. We sort them out accordingly.We do the best we can. Sometimes its a game of Go Fish and other times its a game of High Stakes Poker. In the end we just want to win the game.
The real reason Flyboy goes to the beach-Pow-Pow shrimp and fish tacos!
This will be the last time we go to the beach for awhile.... The Spring Breakers are starting to take over.....No, thank you! One last clip of the waves crashing....Ahhhhhhh....... Please excuse my awesome cinematography;)