Archive for the ‘devotionals’ Category

Binge Watching

Tuesday, March 27th, 2018

Do you or have you “binge watched” TV show or series? It has become a phenomena. At first I thought binge watching was for those people who have a lot of time on their hands or who were so busy they couldn’t watch a show live. Then, it seems like a good idea for those who wanted to watch a season all the way through with no stops or commercials. Then, I tried it. Maybe I’m a late adopter.

I thought I would get into one of the hot new shows or some great show but I could only last an hour or two. I don’t know how anyone does 24 hours or all weekend.

Then I had a thought, does anyone binge read the Bible? There was a day in Ezra/Nehemiah where they read the OT all day! I started a new Bible reading plan, 90 days through the Bible by Zondervan, I believe. To complete it, it requires 12 pages, yes they are double columns, a day for 90 days. That’s pretty quick through the Bible. The suggestion is to set aside 45 minutes. I’ve found that some days I will read for longer.

One thing I’ve learned as I read these chunks of scripture, phrases of OT are echoed in NT.  I read so much of the New Testament that now in the Old I have some context and I “see” some connections. It is also great to read stories all of the way through like a Abraham, Joseph, Samuel, Elijah and Elisha, plus David and Solomon building the temple. I see the heart of God and his love for his people over and over.

Catch up on the lastest episode in scripture using the 90 day Bible or youversion or your own Bible.

The Bible is beautiful.

Biggest factor in Kids’ Spiritual Health

Wednesday, February 28th, 2018

You don’t need a drum roll because there is no suspense here, you know it. Reading the Bible regularly in their home was the biggest predictor of spiritual health as young adults. (Lifeway Research study surveyed 2000 church-going parents, from an article is in Facts and Trends magazine, Winter 2018)

Parents, we need to start or continue Bible reading. We impact our children in so many ways and this is a fairly easy way. Regular scripture reading needs to be one of them. Read it for yourself, read it together, read it one on one. Start today.

The article doesn’t mention how long. It simply stated that the families reported reading the Bible several times a week. If I’m honest, I need help with making this happen. There are so many good Houston Astro’s and Rocket’s games to watch, so many shows to catch up on, so many likes that I can double tap on social media. So, I need help. What I do is tell my kids and family, “we are going to do this.” Then, they end up holding me accountable. They don’t let me forget. You need help, too. Find someone to hold you accountable.

What do you read? Use the scripture from the sermon on Sunday, or from a small group lesson. Use a Psalm or Proverbs for the calendar date, Psalm 28 or Proverb 28 for Feb. 28. Or, start in the Gospel of John or the Letter to the Philippians. Go by your church library or Christian bookstore and find a book of family devotionals. Just read, you don’t need to do much more.

As parents, we  generally hope for and deeply desire that our kids will be physically healthy, mentally healthy, and emotionally healthy. Spiritually healthy is usually last or left off the list. We tend to focus on their friends, their grades, and their safety.

Think further down the road. What do you want for them 10 years from now? Same, right? You want them to be healthy in all of those ways. However, the only thing that will get them through the maddening years of middle school, hectic high school, challenging college, fears starting their first job, plus getting married and beginning a family… the only thing that will get them through these life stages is their spiritual health and a growing relationship with Jesus.

You can make a spiritually significant impact on them today simply by reading the Bible!

I Don’t Know How

Wednesday, August 16th, 2017

As mentioned in the previous post one of the reasons given for not reading/studying the Bible is, I don’t know how. Let me ask parents, if your child said that to you, what would you response be?

Try it…you can do it…you have to learn some time…yes you do…

Maybe we haven’t talked about the “why?” We are spiritual people. We have a need to meet with our Creator. The Bible is the best way to learn about God and how He related/s to us. When we read the Bible our faith grows.

Even if you don’t know how, you have to start somewhere. In every other area of our life, not knowing is addressed by research, trial and error, or some other effort. Why when we come to Bible reading do we just give up?

Priorities. We need to rethink and reset our priorities. We spend enormous amounts of time on other things that are not so significant as our spiritual health. To reset priorities we must make a plan. Set a time and prepare a place. Then stick with it. You are beginning a new discipline. It takes time to establish it. Don’t give up! You can do it! Read the Bible for the sake of your heart.

advent musings and devo ideas

Tuesday, December 9th, 2014

Waiting. Play a game with your kids and a stop watch. Set it up by making this a contest to see who can guess when a minute has elapsed. Press start on the watch and have your children guess when a minute is up. Have someone record each guess until the minute is over. Closest to the actual 1 minute mark “wins.” Try 2 minutes for a challenge. This illustrates our skewed sense of time and we tend to think it moves faster that it seems.

Waiting is watching and wanting but not having. It is often the hardest thing about life. I used to think it was waiting when I was a kid and i wanted it now. But, now as an adult waiting seems even harder.

As a culture we don’t like to wait. We’ve invented tons of technology to shorten the wait. We have microwaves, drive thru’s, expressways, online shopping and measure computer speeds in kbs, that is kilobytes per second! We also dislike waiting so much that we distract our waiting with music, TV or other noise.

Waiting has always been especially hard at Christmas time. Ask your kids. How many excited little ones have spent the night awake in bed waiting for Christmas morning and the presents that await?

There are several scriptures and examples of Luke 2:25 mentions Simeon as waiting for the consolation of Israel. How does the scripture describe Simeon? Righteous, devout, Holy Spirit filled. What do those characteristics have to do with waiting?

Then Galatians 4:4 reminds us that waiting on God is a good thing because God’s timing is perfect. The “fullness of time” illustrates how waiting and God’s timing go together. The culture, language and roads of that Roman era were key to the spread of the gospel. In another instance in Luke 12:36 Jesus reminds us to always be ready even though we wait. And Titus 2:13 reminds us we are waiting for something even better than Christmas, the second appearing of Jesus.

Christmas is about waiting. We wait for family to arrive, for meals to get ready, for presents to be opened. But we also need to wait for Jesus. Yes he is already here but if we plan out our schedules to the minute, drown out spiritual reminders with noise we really might miss Him. Take some time and pause wait a minute or two in silence. Light a candle, turn out/dim the lights and thank Jesus for being Christmas.

What are some things you remember waiting on?

How does waiting help you be a better person?

What if God waits on us and our obedience to Him?

Great marriage conversation starter

Thursday, November 21st, 2013

you may know the quirky video hit, What Does the Fox Say? Try it for marriage.

Les and Leslie Parrott work with couples and marriages and have written some great resources. This is a great devotional thought to get you two talking. What do you say?

http://www.lesandleslie.com/devotional/what-does-the-fox-say/

The new school year

Tuesday, September 4th, 2012

The kids are back in school and everyone at my house is tired. It is back to the school morning schedule and then on to the crazy afternoon pick up and more  evening schedule.

The other night, we looked at a couple of scriptures that speak to the newness of life. Lamentations 3:23, Psalm 33:3 and 2 Corinthian 5:17. We asked questions like… What does new mean? What did you like about your new classes? How are God’s mercies new? to you? What will you do new and different this year? Then, we prayed and thanked God for new things. It was short and sweet but we read God’s word and had a important connecting moment that is crucial for families.