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Commitment to Christ

Commitment to Christ

Skipping a Generation

October 19, 2017
Skipping a Generation-Cynthia L. Simmons

Each generation whether by force of habit or driven by a nostalgic feeling, loves to speak of what would happen “back in my day”. Usually, when one of these flashbacks occurs, a twinkle will appear in the eye, the chest swells and a two- hour lecture of their youth is to be expected. At times it is quite entertaining to hear of the exploits of yesteryear and it can be really engrossing to imagine this titular character navigate the minefield of life, but there is one stinging reminder of how the present is viewed. An automatically assumed moral high ground stance is laid out and the current generation is usually seen as lost because of one obscure reason or another.

Making the assumption that a new generation starts every 17-21 years, approaching the youth of today- meaning approaching anyone that you have a 17+ age gap over, will seem like a challenge. You have experience and an appreciation for Christian art; they will have more access to knowledge and technology and so both sides will want and demand respect but none will give it first.  Here lies one root cause of the divide between the Church and youth of today.

Keeping in Step with the Times
Placing extensive pressure to go to church and to keep the Lord’s commandments as they appear in black and white will not work. Youth feel disconnected because of their easier access to higher learning and at times the Church will seem as an antiquated system designed to constrain rather than teach. Becoming more educated allows for persons to think in ways previously outlawed by the Church. Most importantly when these thoughts are posed as questions, the rebuke given while strong, usually does not answer the underlying question in any satisfactory way.

Setting the Gold Standard
Understandably the Church cannot change with the world, nor can its standard wane and flux in the same manner of the world. If the Church is to be seen as God’s chosen people and a Royal Priesthood, it must be a strong and sturdy Rock of the Ages. Since the doctrine cannot be changed, how then can the youth be reached?

It starts with personal behavior and understanding that today’s youth can see, understand and interpret your actions at an earlier age. They are not blind and should be respected as individuals at an earlier age. Having greater worldly knowledge does not equate to greater spiritual wisdom, therefore the bible has to be broken down into bite- sized bits to ensure that the proper nursing in the Lord is happening. One simple measure of this is being able to quote His word, but that cannot be the only way. Cramming large volumes of information is quite standard for the youth of today so the Bible may just be crammed too without being understood. A way of measuring spiritual wisdom is the behavior during times of trouble. Does the person wail at calamity or travail in prayer?

Photo by Aaron Burden

Authority of Scripture, Bible, Bible Study, Commitment to Christ, Communication, Heart of the Matter, Spiritual Disciiplines, Walking by Faith

Transformation Through God’s Living and Active Word

June 17, 2017
Transformation Through God's Word

Transformation Through God’s Word

Hebrews 4:12 says, for the word if God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of joints and marrow and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

This verse talks about the Bible and it’s very interesting as it explains what it does. One of the things I did as a homeschool mother was categorizing things with my children. Two categories are living versus nonliving material.  We recognize that a rock is nonliving whereas a bug is living. The scripture said the word of God is alive even though it’s words on paper. However, I have learned that at times, especially times of crisis. The word of God would leap off the page. I understood it before, but at those moments I had a deeper understanding. Plus at those moments the word ministered to me more deeply that I thought possible. God’s word will show you where you need to change. I have to say I’ve seen the Bible be what this verse describes: living and active.

“Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.”

The words Jesus said tell us the value of words from God’s mouth. We need them more than food. Because even if we die, we still have God. He’s what we need. The origin of this came from the time when Moses explained to the Israelites what God was doing when he tested them. He wanted them to realize the felt need they had for food wasn’t their biggest need. Their biggest need was God. He could provide food from heaven, if he chose. And he did. So far from saying our physical life has no value, the spiritual trumps the physical. We require the words from God to survive in this life and the next.

[tweetthis]Bible Study changes you.[/tweetthis]

[tweetthis]God’s Word is Alive[/tweetthis]

Andy Lee

Abuse of Authority, Anger, Authority of Scripture, Bible, Bible Study, Commitment to Christ, Communication, Educating your children, Emotions, Freedom, Heart of the Matter, Parenting, People Pleaser, Submission, Truth, Worry

Attention Control Girls: Learning to Let Go!

June 2, 2017
Control Girl_Cynthia L. Simons

Have you ever had a friend pull you off to the side and say, “Watch out for Emmaline. She’ll be telling you what to do if you aren’t careful.”?

No one likes a woman who has to run every event herself, and our kids really hate it once they are grown. At that point, they are ready to choose for themselves.

A couple years ago, my husband and I started ballroom dancing. We love it. However, I have learned things about myself. The man leads while dancing. His job is to move forward and make his way around the room, avoiding other dancers. When I am facing him, I can’t see where we are going.  I am so accustomed to getting things done that relaxing so he can lead is a real challenge. It takes real effort, but these dance lessons taught me how much I needed to be in control.

What a great spiritual lesson for all of us. Look at what the Psalmist says, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight. When you trust God, you must rest in him, knowing he can do what you cannot.

Today Shannon Popkin is my guest. She has just written the book, Control Girl.

Shannon’s bio;

I’m Shannon Popkin. I’m a wife and mom, a writer and speaker, a small group leader and Bible teacher. I’m so excited about my new book, Control Girl: Lessons on Surrendering Your Burden of Control from Seven Women in the Bible.,  which released in January 2017). With God’s help, I’m on a path that leads from Control Girl to Jesus Girl.
As a speaker, I love combining my love for humor and storytelling and with my passion for Jesus. I speak for ladies’ events, retreats, and moms groups. On my blog, I share stories from my life, which I hope will make you smile, and will encourage you to follow Jesus more closely. I also share posts from the other sites that I contribute to, including True Women.
Learn more here.

[tweetthis]You don’t have to control every detail of your life[/tweetthis]

Control Girl

Shannon Popkin

Authority of Scripture, Bible, Bondage breaker, Commitment to Christ, Emotions, Freedom, Love, Redemption, Relationships, Respect, Rights, Self-Esteem

Breaking Free: Accept How God Made You

May 27, 2017

Breaking Free: Accepting How God Made You:

I’m a big fan of history, and I love to read diaries. Once I read a diary about a girl who lived just before the Civil War. She was an older adolescent at the time. One day she was visiting a friend, and as she walked down the hall, she saw a reflection in the mirror she assumed was her friend. Warm thoughts filled her mind about how lovely and poised she was. However, as she got closer to the sitting room, she realized the mirror was catching a reflection of her own face. She was amazed at how her opinion changed and she found fault with that same reflection she had formerly admired. At that moment she knew she would have liked what she saw if she saw herself from someone else’s perspective.

That story fascinates me because I think that represents what a lot of women feel. We look in the mirror and do not like what we see, yet we long to be attractive. For instance, I have curly hair. For years I wished for straight hair and went to lots of effort to make it appear less curly. As far as our abilities or talents, we don’t take those into account either.

Scripture says Greater love has no man than this, than a man lay down his life for a friend. (John 15:13) Jesus left behind his glory and even some of his privileges as God to lay down his life for us. If God loves us that much we are worth a lot.

If we are going to minister to others, we need to have healthy relationships valuing ourselves with our gifts and strengths as God does.

Tina Yeager is my guest today. She is a counselor and a life coach and this topic is one she will address today.

Tina Yeager

Learn more about Tina here.

 

[tweetthis]You are so special because Jesus died for you[/tweetthis]

[tweetthis]Be who God wants you to be[/tweetthis]

 

 

 

 

Anger, Babies, Balance, Child Development, chocolate, Commitment to Christ, Communication, Doing Family God's Way, Editing your work, Educating your children, Emotions, Encouragement, Family, Guilt, Heart of the Matter, Home Atmosphere, Humor, Keeping our focus, Mother's Day, Mothering, Mothering Advice, Parenting, Praise, Putting Others First, Relationships, Respect, Trust

Mother’s Day: Mother Daughter Duo: Rhonda and Kaley Rhea Co-Authors

May 18, 2017

Mother’s Day: Mother and Daughter Duo: Rhonda and Kaley C0-Authors

As a little girl, I looked up to my mother. I can recall sitting on the couch beside her, her admiring her. She was pretty, smart, and was … a mother. I wanted to be like her. As I grew older and got into my teens, I began to feel like we didn’t communicate. We didn’t have a lot in common, or at least I thought so. There was a communication barrier there I failed to understand.

Now that she is gone, I understand her better because she wrote a lot, and I was able to get a peek inside her mind. And I know I’m a lot like her.

Mother’s Day receives mixed reviews. Some of you may have had great mothers, and you enjoy honoring her. Others had a difficult childhood and may try not to repeat the mistakes your mother made. I remember Mother’s day as painful after I lost my mother. Plus those of you with difficult children may find this season painful.

My heart goes out to all of you who might be hurting.

Today I’d like to give young mothers some guidance on doing well, overcoming obstacles and feeling confident in this important job.

I’m reminded of what Paul said to I Timothy: He obviously believed Timothy’s mother and grandmother impacted his life. “For I am mindful of the sincere faith within you, which first dwelt in your grandmother, Lois, and your mother Eunice, and I am sure that it is in you as well.”

My guests are Rhonda Rhea and her daughter Kaley. They are the authors of Turtles in the Road, an inspirational humorous romance that’s just releasing. They are both TV personalities for Christian Television Network’s KNLJ in mid-Missouri. Rhonda is also a nationally-known speaker, humor columnist and author of 11 other books, including Fix-Her-Upper, a soon-releasing nonfiction project coauthored with Beth Duewel. Rhonda is married to her pastor/husband, Richie Rhea, and they have five grown children. Kaley works at Missouri Baptist University and she and Rhonda both live in the St. Louis area.

Learn more about Rhonda and Kaley here.

Rhonda and Kaley

[tweetthis]#humor is a great way to reach your child’s heart[/tweetthis]

Betrayal, Boundaries, Commitment to Christ, Communication, Emotions, Encouragement, Making choices, Marriage, Relationships, Respect, Safety, Wearing a Mask

Relationships: Living without Masks and being Safe

April 25, 2017
Relationships

Relationships: Living without Masks and being Safe

My daughter is grown and has her own kitty. Her cat loves to eat and is overweight. The vet has put kitty on a very strict diet, so she is careful how she feeds him. one day I was visiting Joy and the kitty was very obviously trying to get fed earlier than usual. As a veteran mom, I was watching her struggle with her cat, I had images of me trying to make my kids behave.

However, she saw me laughing and assumed I was worried about the cat, instead of enjoying the situation. She huffed into the kitchen and fed the cat early. At that point, I was very worried that she misunderstood me and thought I was pressuring her when I was not.

Later, I apologized and tried to make it clear what I was doing. I didn’t want this to be one of those things that became a tug of war between mother and daughter.

We are made to be in relationships, but the give and take of relationships is not easy.

Today I have Laura Petherbridge. We are going to talk about living openly and yet being safe.

1:55 Why shouldn’t you rescue your friends?

2:25 It feels like you are helping them. Why isn’t that true?

4:05 Could we be doing it because we have a poor self-image?

5:40 What’s the difference in enabling and helping an injured person?

10:20 What drives us to be people pleasers?

12:35 What if you cannot tell your spouse you need to work on your relationship? Isn’t that unhealthy?

14:45 What do you mean by marriage with a mask?

20:00 Why do hurting people hurt others?

23:00 Just becoming a Christian does not solve all your problems.

23:50 How did you heal from your ‘daddy wound’?

26:00 What that an epiphany for you?

Author and Speaker

Laura Petherbridge

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Learn more about Laura here.

[tweetthis]Realize God’s love is what you need[/tweetthis]

[tweetthis]God will never fail you.[/tweetthis]

Apologetics, Commitment to Christ, Communication, Death, Easter, Educating your children, Heart of the Matter, Hope, Passover, Resurrection

Why Easter is the Most Important Christian Holiday

April 14, 2017

Why Easter is the Most Important Christian Holiday

Rabbits don’t lay eggs, they bear live young. Someone told me the story of a pagan holiday combined with Christianity. Something about a fertility celebration? It wasn’t Christian, but it got mixed in. However, I found family movies of my first Easter. My brother and I had Easter baskets, chocolate eggs, and fancy outfits. Watching my parents follow me around while I wore my pretty dress almost makes tears come to my eyes. (They are both in heaven.)  In later years, I do remember picking out my fancy clothes and dying eggs for Easter egg hunts. We always went to church to sing and praise God for the resurrection.  However, despite the fact what we celebrated every year, I didn’t”t realize how important Easter was until I got older.  It may have been my fault for not listening, but I didn’t get it. Now I do.

My guest is my husband, Ray Simmons. He’s a Bible teacher and elder at Grace Community Church. We chose a different tradition raising our children, and he will explain why Easter is so important.

Ray Simmons leading Passover

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1:00 Why is Easter so important?

2:10 What evidence do we have that Christ rose?

 

[tweetthis]He is risen. He is risen indeed![/tweetthis]

[tweetthis]Because Jesus lives, we have eternal life[/tweetthis]

 

 

 

Learn more about doing a Messianic Passover here or here.

Armor of God, Bible, Commitment to Christ, Emotions, Encouragement, Heart of the Matter, Hope, Keeping our focus, Living through heartache, Making choices, Perseverance, Walking by Faith

Spiritual Warfare: Persevere with the Armor of God

April 12, 2017
Persevere with the armor

Spiritual Warfare: Persevere with the Armor of God

We are in the midst of a war, how can we find the stamina to keep going? Let me tell you a story.

Let me tell you a story. I have a disabled child and I homeschooled. I took him in for evaluation and the person I used recommended I take him to professionals several days a week for therapy. Leaving that lady’s office, I wondered how I could follow her instructions with my four other kids. I chuckled to myself that I would have to put somebody up for adoption, something I’d never do.

This child’s issues broke my heart every day. When I tried teaching him the simplest jobs, he collapsed into brought blood-curdling screams. “I’m stupid. I’m stupid, I’m stupid.” For instance, teaching a child to count is easy. You pick up blocks and say one for the first, two for the second.The only problem was my son couldn’t do that. Picking up a block required he use his fingers with the right amount of pressure. It took too much concentration.  Saying the numbers in the right order, sequencing was also terribly hard. He could never do the two things at once. I never did do what the lady recommended.

I hired part-time therapists and worked on their goals until we met again. However, it was an inch by inch proposition whenever I taught him anything. He had neurological issues due to his seizures, and he could not concentrate. I had three seconds if I held my face to his, almost touching his nose. That makes teaching really tough. Many mornings I prayed fervently in my bedroom before I went downstairs to work with him.

As wives and mothers, we will face challenges. Where and how will we find the courage and perseverance to stick to the task? Katy Kauffman is my guest today. She has written a Bible study based on 2 Timothy, and it’s about perseverance.

2:50 What does God have to say about not giving up?

3:50 Describe perseverance for Jesus.

5:00  What do you think of Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane prior to his crucifixion?

6:10 How can we deal with those who reject Christ without being preachy?

8:00 What does the heart of a warrior look like?

Katy Kauffman

 

Learn more about Katy here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[tweetthis]Helmet of Salvation: Protect your mind[/tweetthis]

[tweetthis]Don’t forget your armor today, Christian[/tweetthis]

 

Anger, Balance, Boundaries, Caring for your body, Church, Commitment to Christ, Exercise, Freedom, God's temple, Healthy Lifestyle, Heart of the Matter, Keeping our focus, Proper diet

Keeping Life in Balance with Laurie Boulden

March 31, 2017
Keeping life in balance

Keeping Life in Balance:

Ladies, God cares about the choices we make because they impact our lives as well as others.

 

I appreciate the writings of Francis Schaeffer who is now with the Lord. He pointed out that there is no distinction between sacred and spiritual. All of life, minus sin, is lived out before the eyes of the Lord.  He wants us to live in this physical world with integrity in our personal lives as well as our spiritual lives. Because they overlap.

 

We have a tendency to think that brushing our teeth or exercise is not a godly action. Well, it is. Cause you are caring for the body that belongs to God. I used to think changing diapers did not seem particularly spiritual. But ladies, it is. You are caring for a child, and that is all part of raising that baby with love and graciousness.

 

We need to live a balanced life where we keep the important things important and focus on eternityLet’s talk about the fruit of the spirit: That is if you are walking with the Holy Spirit’s guidance, your life will have these qualities.

Galatians 5:22 – 23But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,  gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.

Did you hear self-control? That includes not blowing up in anger, but it also includes good diet and good sleep habits.

Laurie Boulden is my guest today. She has just written the book Weighed Down. The main character learns balance in her life.

4:50 Does any woman think she’s attractive?

7:05 Share how to manage a good diet.

8:25 How can planning help?

10:25 Having realistic expectations

11:25 How can exercise help?

13:00 Share ways to stay spiritually balanced.

14:55 Proverbs 31 lady

15:45 Discuss how prayer impacts our balance

Learn about Laurie Boulden here.

Laurie Boulden

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anger, Commitment to Christ, Communication, Crying out to God, Emotions, Heart of the Matter, Perseverance, Prayer, Trust, Waiting, Walking by Faith

Marlo Schalesky:Finding Peace While Waiting On God

March 24, 2017

Finding Peace While You Wait On God:

If you are like me, you like to get results. I set goals for the day and take great pleasure in checking off my list. When we turn to  God with our prayers, we tend to expect the same thing. How frustrating.  We know from scripture God wants us to pray and to bring him our needs and petitions. Here’s a quote from Matthew 7:7 1a“Ask, and bit shall be given to you; 2seek, and you shall find; 3knock, and it shall be opened to you.

When you read that, you see God’s promise to answer and you expect him to. As Americans, we’d see it like placing an online order. We type in what we want and set up delivery. However, God doesn’t always work like we think he should.  I can recall praying for my parents to get carpet downstairs in their living room. At the time, they had hardwood, which we value more highly now. But they wanted carpet.  I saw no way God could answer that, but they worked in a church

Let me tell you a story. I can recall praying for my parents to get carpet downstairs in their living room. At the time, they had hardwood, which we value more highly now. But they wanted carpet.  I saw no way God could answer that, but they worked in a church ministry and won a contest. Someone had donated carpet to the winner. So God answered my prayer. My parents were impressed and told me to keep praying.

However, many times I have prayed don’t get an answer. Or at least you think that’s true cause lots of time passes. Nothing happens.

So what is God doing?  And why did he make such an open and shut promise like that one I read?

You can read about people in the Bible who prayed like Hannah prayed for a son, but God did NOT have promises at that time.

Today we have the promise that whatever happens, God will turn it into something for our good.

Perhaps your problem isn’t about prayer. You are in transition much longer than you think you should be. Why does God make us wait?

Today my guest is Marlo Shalesky. She wrote Waiting for Wonder. The book is about Sarah and Abraham waiting for a child.

2:10 Why did you write a book on this topic?

3:00 How was Sarah supposed to know she did the wrong thing? Her choice was okay in her culture.

8:00 You say we pray too small. Explain that.

9:00 Isn’t it possible we will see the outcome of our prayers in eternity?

Find Marlo here.

Marlo Schalesky

 

 

 

[tweetthis]We need to pray bigger and trust[/tweetthis]

[tweetthis]Our prayers impact eternity[/tweetthis]

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