Tag Archive | Bible

The Word is “Kind”

As a friend and I conversed a couple weeks ago, she challenged me to choose a word to study  for the year. By study, she did not merely mean the definition(s) of a word, but explore how it does/can/should impact my life. To be honest, at first I didn’t really consider this task, however, as a particular word kept showing up in my reading I began to reconsider.

One morning my devotional reading centered on Ephesians 4:32.

  “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.”

Then, I overheard a mother telling her child to be kind. I was also reading a biography where the author was emphasizing 1 Corinthians 13:4a.

 “Love is patient and kind”

She shared the hard truth that often we are not patient and do not show kindness to our children and spouse. The question, “If I truly love my family, is it evident through my kindness towards them?” began to haunt me. It hit me like a slap in the face, when I responded in a not-so-kind way to Hubby. That’s what it took for me to submit to the word challenge, and the word is “KIND”.

To begin my study, I looked up the definition and made a quick Bible search. Kind is a willingness to do good or give pleasure, a sympathetic attitude towards others, having a good or benevolent nature or disposition,considerate, helpful. Kind is a popular word in the Bible. Some of the many verses I looked up are Psalm 41:1, 145:17, Proverbs 3:3, 11:17, 16:24, 31:26, Romans 2:4, 12:8, 12:10, Galatians 5:22, Ephesians 1:7, 1:8, Colossians 3:12, 1 Timothy 5:10, 2 Timothy 2:24, 2 Peter 1:7

As I’ve continued to think about the study of “KIND”, I’m realizing what a challenge it will be. You see, I don’t want to merely recognize kindness, but I want my life and love to be overflowing with kindness. For this to happen, I need to study, memorize, and remember God’s words on kindness. I also, need to boldly ask God to reveal the unkindness I harbor, and then repent and ask God to transform the unkindness to kindness.

Have you ever selected a word for the year? If not, would you like to take this challenge? Your word doesn’t have to be the same as mine; maybe God has a different word for you to discover. However, if you’d like to join me with my selected word, the word is “KIND”.

 kind

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Carrying Burdens into 2014

It is with a heavy heart that I make this first blog entry for the new year 2014. The old year slammed shut with a harsh finality for some of my friends. I am left pondering, “How does one sincerely carry another’s burden of grief and loneliness, shock and disappointment, hurt and unforgiveness?”

Three friends with three completely different situations. My heart aches for each of them.

Psalm 55:22 tells us to “Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you.” That is what I’ve been doing on behalf of these dear ones, praying for them and asking God to help them through this difficult time. I’ve also been praying for myself. Why? Because I need wisdom to know how to reach out in love, compassion, and gentleness. I need to let each know that I love, care and hurt for them. I need to be available with a listening ear, a shoulder to cry on, open arms to hug or hold. I may need self-control to keep my mouth shut, or boldness to say what needs said. I need to be proactive in prayer and availability. I need to live out Apostle Paul’s instruction to “Carry each other’s burden.” (Gal.6:2)

As the door of 2013 slammed shut, the cold wind blew open the door of 2014. No matter what happens this year, I know that “the LORD is good. His unfailing love continues forever, and his faithfulness continues to each generation.” (Psalm 100:5)

 “Carry each other’s burdens”  Galatians 6:2

Read and Stay Warm

Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!! It’s been rather frigid lately, and I really am not a fan of cold weather unless I can stay in by the fire. Unfortunately, my children were not blessed with a snow queen for a mom. No, I am the type who enjoys snow and winter weather from inside the house, not the one who is as giddy as the kids ready to bundle in snowsuits and boots. However, I was usually waiting with hot chocolate and a book when they came in to warm up. It seemed that about every other year in December or January we were ready to read (re-read) the same book. Can you guess what it was?

I do not recall reading the Laura Ingalls Wilder Little House books as a child, but when my oldest son was in Kindergarten I began reading them aloud. This became a family tradition, each year that there was a kindergartener in the house I read the series one book after another. I would usually read some during the day as well as a chapter or so before bedtime. It was not unusual for the older kids to check out the book from the school library so they didn’t miss the adventures that were read during the day.

The timing seemed perfect that we were often reading The Long Winter, when the north winds blew arctic air across our plains. I would often sit right in front of the woodstove as I read. Some how reading about the blizzards, ice on the water bucket, nearly running out of food, and knowing how poorly the houses were built, made me cold. Oh, the sweet memories. 

My kids are grown and gone; Little House books sit idly on the shelf, and my sweet pooch gives me a pleading look as if to say, “Pleeeeeeeeeeeease come romp in the snow with me?”

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Have you ever wondered what the weather was like while Joseph and Mary Great-with-Child were traveling to Bethlehem? What about the stable, was it warm and cozy with sweet barn smells, or was it drafty, dusty and musty waking up sinuses producing multiple sneezes? If it was cold, did they have a warm fire to sit, sleep, and give birth next to? Some questions of the very first Christmas, may not be known, but there is plenty of detail we can read. Whether you have children at home, or think you have the Christmas story learned inside and out from yearly repetition, take time to read it again. Read it with awe and wonder as if it is the first time. Read it slowly absorbing the message of love throughout the events surrounding the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

The next few days are supposed to remain cold through much of our country, so pull up a chair, snuggle in a blanket, or sit next to the fire with a Bible and read this wonderful story. Probably the most familiar account is found in Luke 2, but you can also read it in Matthew 1.

Deep Cleaning

For the past month you may have noticed I have been AWOL from blogging. What has kept me away? Oh, you know; just life in general such as work, a new grandbaby (and “BOY” is he grand!),

CAM00180and completing a remodel project that took twice as long as anticipated when I began tearing out all the pepto-bismol pink.

photoThis week, I have been DEEP cleaning trying to rid my house of the multiple layers of dirt and grime that came from the remodel and the lack of cleaning. From top to bottom and in nooks and crannies, the dust bunnies are doomed! They are being sucked into the sweeper and washed away.

This is also a great time to do some deep cleaning within oneself. Galatians 5 has the To-Do list already made for us.

“When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these.”

Cleaning supplies needed are: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

  • Use LOVE to overcome hostility and envy
  • Use JOY to get rid of quarreling
  • PEACE will clean out jealousy and division
  • PATIENCE will sweep up outbursts of anger
  • Get rid of selfish ambition and replace with KINDNESS and GOODNESS
  • Wash out idolatry and sorcery with FAITHFULNESS
  • A good dusting of GENTLENESS will take care of dissensions
  • A firm scrub of SELF-CONTROL will get all the grimy stuff from sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, drunkenness, and wild parties

To really deep clean, we must not overlook the corners of our heart and the nooks and crannies of our attitude. Well, what are we waiting for? Let’s get started! Clean; clean; clean!

What’s Your ‘Tude?

Today was filled with Bible Camp preparations. There is most of a week left before camp begins, but Grandson Will is coming to visit tomorrow and staying until I leave for camp. Therefore, I was trying to get as much done today as possible so this Mema can play the rest of the week.

The camp theme is “What’s Your ‘Tude?” and the scripture focus is from Matthew 5, the Beatitudes. As I studied the devotions for each day, I began to really get excited. Do you remember what the Beatitudes are? They are the verses that begin with “Blessed are the…” Any way, I just know God is going to be transforming lives next week.

Have you been around young teenagers lately? I love that age, but it definitely has its struggles with attitudes. They just don’t quite know where they fit in sometimes. One day they want to be treated like an adult, but the next day (or minute) they just want to be a child. They want to be popular, athletic, musical, liked, included, and the list can go on. Often this age is very self-focused. They also are very energetic and thrive on the attention of older teens and adults.

Next week will be fun-filled, action packed, and life changing. As we study God’s Word, learn what it means to be poor in spirit, meek, hunger & thirst, merciful, pure in heart and peacemakers, and then apply it, we will want to change or adjust our ‘tude.

By the way, what’s your ‘tude?

Parenting: Challenging and Rewarding

Parenting is quite possibly the most challenging AND most rewarding job one can have.  Hubby and I have four grown children.  The fourth was born when the first was 5 years old.  That led to having four teenagers for 1 1/2 years.  We were/are not perfect parents, and we did not have perfect children.  We were like many of you – raising and teaching the best we knew how.

For the past several weeks, Hubby and I have had the privilege to lead a study called “Shepherding a Child’s Heart” by Tedd Tripp. This study has been encouraging and humbling as well.  Some of the information has come 20+ years too late for us. However, we have been able to share from our experiences with the young parents in this class.

The focus of the study is learning how to speak to the heart of your child. Helping your children make right choices from their heart rather than making those choices simply to avoid discipline. The things your child does and says flows from the heart.

“A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart. What you say flows from what is in your heart.” Luke 6:45 NLT

The parents’ goal should not be a well-behaved child, but one that embraces the gospel and continually grows in relationship with Jesus Christ.

We are concluding our study by making a family bible with Mindy Dunn’s Child Training Bible kit. Don’t be misled, this is not to preach at the kids when they have done something wrong.  It is a tool to help the family learn what God has to say about many topics.  Too many times as a mom, I couldn’t immediately recall Bible verses to go along with those teachable moments.  Dunn’s kit is color coded for different topics, making it very user friendly.  The kit even includes conversation starters for each topic. This can be a great tool for family Bible study.  How I wish I would have had this when my children were growing up! I highly recommend the Child Training Bible kit, you can view and order here: www.childtrainingbible.com

We have had some great discussions in our class.  Would you like to learn how to shepherd your child’s heart? If you are in the Meade, KS or surrounding area, I would be more than happy to lead another class.  Just let me know if you are interested.

Dear God, In Psalms you tell us that children are a gift and reward from you. Thank you for such a precious gift – a child. Give wisdom and patience to each parent reading this blog.  May they seek you and your Word daily as they raise their children. Amen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March Madness

Hubby has the tractors going, trying to meet CRP deadlines.  Irrigation wells are pumping due to lack of rain and snow. Our cows are beginning to calve. The early veggie seeds are tucked under loose dirt in the garden. Spring Break has come and gone, and so far my NCAA basketball bracket is not too shabby.  It is March Madness at our Home-On-The-Range.

Each year when we spring forward and lose an hour, our schedule and workload seem to immediately multiply.  Even with good organizational skills, sometimes the madness is like a Kansas whirlwind spinning out of control. For instance, yesterday I was supposed to scan seed sheets and submit the seed orders.  This task needed done so the orders would be filled for the next delivery. Unfortunately, this job was not on my to-do list and was forgotten until this morning.

I dropped the ball, but the game is not over.  Hubby and I need to listen and communicate well to minimize turnovers.  We also need to continue to daily review our play book (Bible) and take Coach’s (God’s) advice. All our hard work is meaningless, meaningless if we do not work as a team for our God.

The wisest and wealthiest man on earth, King Solomon, concludes with these words:

 Here now is my final conclusion: Fear God and obey his commands, for this is everyone’s duty. God will judge us for everything we do, including every secret thing, whether good or bad.
Ecclesiastes 12:13, 14

Everything we do, whether work or play should honor God. It is our duty to obey His commands. In fact, I Corinthians 10:31 says, “Whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”

It’s time to head out of the locker room with game face on, giving my all during this March madness.