Posts Tagged ‘family’

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!

Parents’ talk

Monday, November 14th, 2011

In light of several current topics and news stories, we have a prime opportunity for, Parents’ talk!

I mean it, really, Parents talk, parent’s talk!

And not just to each other about how crazy the kids are or what the latest problem is. The news story of last week should have given parents around the country a reason to talk about several topics. Sex, for one. What is right and wrong. Appropriate actions between adults and kids. Not to hide or cover up problems. You always get caught. It gets worse and affects more people the longer you wait to do what is right.

Marriage and who to marry could have been on the list in the last few weeks, too. Finances may be another constant topic available out there.

Talk is important to your kids as you discuss your heart. Bring your thoughts and beliefs into the conversation as they ask questions and think about things. Believe me they are thinking and hearing a lot of other conversations about these topics and events. Don’t put such pressure on the conversation that you never have it.

Deuteronomy 6:5-9 talks about weaving your faith into daily things. The book of Proverbs identifies several topics for fathers and parents to talk about: wisdom, finances, family, marriage, morality, friends, character, etc. Use the web for a scripture search on BibleGateway.com or similar. Search the topic and have a couple of verses ready. Then just start, call a family meeting, whether they like it or not. It is that important. If they ask “why” and they will, tell them because it is time to talk. It is always the right time to do the right thing. It’s your responsibility as a parent to talk to your kids and shape them because one day they will need to be adults and parents who talk to their kids.

Real Joy

Tuesday, October 18th, 2011

I’ve watched the past few nights as professionals jumped up and down, hugged, giggled and ran around like little boys playing a game after a win. Of course they were men playing a game but look at a win several months ago. There’s a line up and smiles, some high fives and pats on the head as they walk across the field into the dugout. During the last few nights after winning a playoff series that propels them on to a bigger game, the players celebrated in a makeshift mob, jumping, skipping, slapping more than hands, with gloves thrown in the air and soaking each other with the spray of ginger ale. Out of context, someone might think there was something wrong.

So, I was thinking about real joy in life. When and why do I experience real joy? How do I express it? Does my family experience joy? What does your celebration “dance” look like? And, what are some joy killers?

Clearly there is something to the hard work and success of a team (we can include family here); achieving common goals over a period of time; emotional vulnerability, discipline and sacrifice. Where does that happen in your life?

Think about it for a minute or two… What causes real joy in your life? What are some joy killers?

Being shade

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2008

My family and I have spent several weeks this summer on vacation and semi-vacation. One was a vacation to Disney World and the other was the semi-vacation to a Little League World Series in Alexandria, Louisiana. Both of those places definitely qualify as hot, as in temperatures, and let me say, it is not a dry heat!  

In Florida as we entered the park du jour we would grab a map and then some shade to plot out our path to our favorite attraction. Along the way we would dart from shade and shadow to enjoy the subtle coolness of the temperature difference. If we ended up standing in line, shade was a premium commodity. Otherwise, out in the open staying in the sun we would wilt as the humidity and heat seemingly smothered us.

In Louisiana most of our games were played around 1pm, in the heat of the day (the weather forecast called for heat index of 107 degrees!). Thankfully the stands and dugouts were covered providing shade for the fans and players. Each day we would try to pick which side we sat on based on the movement of the shadow cast by the roof over those stands. I think I must have said, “Sit down and take a drink” a thousand times.  

As I thought about the shade and shadows I was reminded of a song lyric and some scripture. The song was by 80s artist Steve Camp, titled, Shade for the Children. In it he sings, “I want to be shade for the children…” Several verses mention shade and shadows as a refuge from the heat and protection from enemies. Psalm 36:7 reads, “…the children of men take refuge in the shadow of your wings.” In light of parenthood I was reminded of our responsibility to teach and protect our children. They don’t know the life or death potential of playing in the hot sun. Their body heat rises, the sun and humidity adds to that plus they are having so much fun they don’t stop to rest or take a drink which could be a bad combination.

Heat and its effects can be subtle just like evil. There are so many other environments where we must be wise and ready to act and speak for our children. Children need us to think ahead for them at this stage in their lives. We can be the shade they need to rest under and provide a reprieve from the “heat” of the day. And, if I’m in God’s shade that is the safest place for my kids. So, I’ll look for God’s shade and shadow in those choices I make for me and for my children.