Hand

He Holds My Hand in Hard Times and Good Times

January 12, 2018

We need the Lord to Hold Our Hand. If you listen to the news, you know our world is in turmoil.  Terrorist attacks, bombings, and hatred against police dominate the headlines these days. Plus, politicians viciously attack one another. We as women tend to shut all that out, but it’s pretty hard to ignore the chaos in our families. The holidays just ended and many of us had to work hard to deal with difficult family members.

Our children create problems too. They disobey, get sick, fight, have problems in school.

Consider this verse: My peace I give to you. My peace I leave with you. Not as the world gives, do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled  neither let it be afraid. John 14:27

So how can we get this gift of peace?

John fifteen talks about abiding in Christ.

Abide in Me and I in You. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine. John 15:4

That word ‘abide’ is a command, and it means to live there, make that place your home. The Apostle John continues that theme through the chapter. Look at verse nine of John fifteen.

Just as the Father has loved me, I have also loved you. Abide in my love.

That verb commands us to live, stay, remain in God’s love.

What are some ways we can stay there? Live in the midst of God’s love? What an amazing thought!

If we live in the midst of God’s love, we can find peace in the middle of tough times.

My guest today is Carol Kent, and she has written a devotion based on hard times she lived through.  He Holds My Hand is a beautiful devotional that demonstrates how much God loves us.

Learn more about her here.

Reignite Your Faith

Reignite Your Faith in 2018

January 5, 2018
Soundcloud Image - Jan 4, 2018-Erica Wiggenhorn

The holidays are over, and it’s time to reignite your faith. As mothers, we are probably worn out after doing all the celebrating since we are the ones who do the work. And it’s almost a relief to get back to normal with a new year stretching before us.

However, with it’s so important that we do not allow ourselves to become complacent about our faith, even though prayer and devotions, bible study are all part of what we do. Our faith is so vital.

The Apostle Peter knew he would not be among the early church much longer and he had a message to give them. You know when you face death, you don’t do small talk:

2 Peter 1:13 And I consider it right, as long as I am in this earthly dwelling, to stir you up by way of reminder, (2 Pet. 1:13 NAS)2 Peter 1:14 knowing that the laying aside of my earthly dwelling is imminent, as also our Lord Jesus Christ has made clear to me. (2 Pet. 1:14 NAS)

Peter wanted to stir up the church, and I want to stir you up by reminding you how much we have in Christ.

 

2 Peter 1:3 seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. (2 Pet. 1:3 NAS)

How incredible that we have, not some, but everything we need through the true knowledge. (epi gnosis – full and complete knowledge of God.  

2 Peter 1:4 For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, in order that by them you might become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust. (2 Pet. 1:4 NAS)

How amazing that we can become partakers of the divine nature. By the way, divine nature would mean we are becoming more like God!

The early church lived with enthusiasm as they saw God move, and as we face a new year, Erica Wiggenhorn invites you to reignite your faith.

You can find Erica here.

Reignite

Erica Wiggenhorn

 

 

 

 

 

Christmas-Peace

Christmas-Peace Amidst Turmoil

December 21, 2017

Christmas-Peace? We see so much turmoil and division in our country today.  Peace on earth and goodwill to men seem very foreign, but the angels sang those words when they announced the birth of Jesus. Isaiah called him the Prince of Peace, and he came to reconcile us with God.

Today people express their anger in riots, shootings, and violence. We’ve even seen outbursts against police and political figures as well as ordinary people. Many of us worry about how our nation rages against itself. I’m reminded of the verses in Galatians 5 that speak of the works of the flesh:

Galatians 5:19 – 21  “Now the deeds of the flesh are evident… immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing…” Doesn’t that sound like what we’ve lived through?

Compare that list with fruits of the spirit in verses twenty-two and twenty-three: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things, there is no law.

I love that last phrase. In case you didn’t know it, none of the fruits of the spirit are illegal. Can you imagine being arrested for loving your neighbor or being kind to someone?

But there’s more: James 3:17 says ” the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy, and good fruits, unwavering, without hypocrisy.”

Do you see a pattern here? If we walk by the Spirit of God, we will live differently.  Our lives will be full of the fruits of the Spirit. Plus, I think we need to ask the Savior to give us Christmas-Peace this year.

Today I have Rebecca Price Janney, and she’s going to tell a story about World War I that illustrates peace in the midst of war.

Rebecca loves history as much as I do. You can learn more about Rebecca here.

 

sibling-rivalry

Sibling Rivalry and Christmas for Blended Families

December 16, 2017

Christianity offers hope and love to all of us, however, that doesn’t stop sibling-rivalry unless we take steps to ensure each of our children feel our love.

Plan on teaching John 3:16 to your children and live it out in everyday life: “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son that whoever believes in him has eternal life.”

Parents of blended families struggle even more because they cannot control what their ex-partners might do. What if your ex-spouse decides gives excuses why the child cannot come to your house for Christmas? What if he gives more than you can afford? What if he says things about you that hurt or are untrue?

Laura Petherbridge calls herself the Smart-Step-Mom and reaches out to blended families offering help and guidance. She can plug you into an organization that offers support throughout the year.

You can find Laura here.

1:20 What can you do with your kids who want to compete?

2:35 What’s the best way to handle the holidays with sibling-rivalry?

5:45 What if you are in the midst of a divorce and there’s a tug of war between you and your spouse?

7:50 Explain how to put the child’s interest first.

9:15 How do you put away anger at that ex-spouse?

 

 

Christ-centered

Ideas for a Christ-Centered Christmas

December 8, 2017

What does a Christ-centered Christmas look like? December presents us a myriad of activities, and the combination of those can lead to exhaustion, not celebration.

However, I can’t stop thinking about the angel choir which announced the birth of the Savior. That’s the only place in Scripture God sent angels to create a glorious spectacle, and God never confuses his priorities. Imagine not one angel but thousands filling the night sky and singing. How beautiful angels voices must have been. Wow!  The birth of Christ was an occasion for the world. So, it makes sense Christmas should be Christ-Centered.

Consequently, we can conclude the message of Peace on Earth and Goodwill to Mankind takes center stage.  Just think, in a world destroyed by sin, broken, confused, groaning under the curse, God offered hope through the birth of one baby who would die for our sins. His birth and later death led the way to our reconciliation with God, revealed the nature of God, and brought the prospect of eternal life.  A huge blessing!

My guest is Peggy Sue Wells, author, and mother of seven. She will share ideas for creating the perfect Christ-centered Christmas. Check out her website.

Encouragement

Welcome December: The Final Month of 2017

December 1, 2017

Welcome December.  Over the past year, I have been uploading a clickable calendar themed around that month. Together we have celebrated, we have cried, we have prayed, we have had victory, and some of us, like myself, are still waiting for our prayers to be answered.

As we come together to welcome the final month of 2017 let’s not just come together as a “to-do,” but instead, let’s join in on living out a legacy and ask ourselves the daily question: What I am contributing to make the world a better place?

“Father in this month of Christmas and New Year,
may we grasp your greatness and power found in the
birth and salvation of Jesus Christ. In His Name, Amen.”

Download December “Others Centered” Calendar

Key

Finding the Key to Your Child’s Heart

December 1, 2017
Key

When I discovered I was pregnant the first time, I knew I wanted to be an excellent mother. How I longed to find the key to my child’s heart and never make the mistakes my own parents made, even though those blunders weren’t huge. However, as time passed, I had several children, five in all, and I made tons of mistakes.

I came to understand this job wasn’t easy and required careful thought, determination, self-discipline, planning, prayer, guidance, and more prayer. That’s no joke! Each child has a unique personality and may not respond to the techniques you used in the past. One may obey after a scold while others require sharper discipline. My husband and I tossed aside formulas and all the one-size-fits-all patterns. A parent needs to know the child, find the key to what motivates him. If you misunderstand the child’s motives, he will believe you treated him unjustly.

For instance, when I was in elementary school, I was on the see-saw with another girl. At one point, the other girl wanted down, and I agreed she could get off. I had no idea that being way up in the air meant I would fall backward when she got off. I tumbled to the ground and got the air knocked out of me. When I couldn’t breathe, I was terrified and drug myself to the teacher. She frowned and told me I was overreacting and to snap out of it. Her reaction horrified me because I was really uncomfortable and afraid I was dying.

All that to say, knowing your child is key to being successful. Today I have Gwyn McCaslin as my guest. In addition to being a special friend, she is a marriage and family counselor from Sugar Springs, Ohio and chatting with her is always a pleasure.

Harsh

When God Seems Harsh, Cold, or Distant

November 28, 2017

When I have gone through hard times, God often seems distant, even harsh or cold because I cannot sense his presence. Plus, if you read what God did in the Old Testament he appears harsh and brutal.

In Genesis six, the Bible records God became angry over man’s sin and chose to send a flood to kill mankind and animals: “…I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, from animals to creeping things and to birds of the sky, for I am sorry I have made them.”

When God gave the Ten Commandments from Mt Sinai, the people were terrified at his voice: “…if we hear the voice of the LORD our God any longer, then we shall surely die.” Deut. 5:25.

Look what he said to Moses in Exodus when Aaron made a golden calf for the people to worship. “Now let me alone that my anger may burn against them and that I may destroy them, and I will make of you a great nation.” Moses reminded him of his covenant with Abraham and Isaac, and God relented.

Compare that to Jesus in the New Testament who wanted the children to come to him. Imagine Jesus touching babies and toddlers. That presents a very different picture. Or what about the time he said, “Let not your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in me. . . for I go to prepare a place for you.”

In John fifteen Jesus said, “Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do whatever I have commanded you.”

Today my guest is Cheri Cowell, and she has written 365 Devotions for Peace, which answered that question. You can find Cheri here.

1:20 Cheri talk to us about what God is like.

4:30 How long did Noah preach before the flood came?

 

Thanksgiving Ideas

Thanksgiving Ideas Making the Holiday Special

November 16, 2017

Mom, could you use some Thanksgiving ideas to make the holiday special? I have always found it hard to have a thankful heart because it’s easier for me to complain about the things in life I don’t like. However, I’ve interviewed so many authors who shared how they have praised God through tough times and felt the presence of God. Being thankful changes your perspective and gives you a humble heart.

I love Psalm 100. The focus is on God and that’s where it should be:

Shout joyfully to the Lord all the earth

Serve the Lord with gladness

Come before him with joyful singing

Know that the Lord himself is God,

It is he who has made us and now we ourselves

We are his people and the sheep of his pasture

Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise.

Give thanks to him and bless his name.

For the Lord is good and his lovingkindness is everlasting

And his faithfulness to all generation.

Thanksgiving can be harder to celebrate since it surrounds a meal. I’ve invited Peggy Sue Wells to give us tips on celebrating today.  She’s an author who raised seven children, and she’s very creative.

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