Monday, April 27, 2015

My Son's Cheerleader!

I normally try and put my kids to bed with a book or Bible lesson.  The other day our Bible lesson came out of Psalms 103.  This text of scripture is full of description about God's character.  Here's just a sampling from the chapter:

He is merciful and tender toward those who don’t deserve it; he is slow to get angry and full of kindness and love. He never bears a grudge, nor remains angry forever.  (Psalms 103:8-9)

I knew my 12 year old understood the words that illustrated God's character but I was pretty sure my little one didn't.  I wanted to make sure he knew just how much God loves him.  I wanted him to know that God's love is constant whether he made good or poor choices.  There's nothing he can do that will cause God to love him less, just like there's nothing that causes God to love him more.  His "works" won't change God's love.  He's the same yesterday, today, and forever. 

He has not punished us as we deserve for all our sins, 11 for his mercy toward those who fear and honor him is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth. 12 He has removed our sins as far away from us as the east is from the west. 13 He is like a father to us, tender and sympathetic to those who reverence him. 14 For he knows we are but dust 15 and that our days are few and brief, like grass, like flowers, 16 blown by the wind and gone forever. (Psalms 103:10-16)

When I asked my youngest to explain to me about God's personality, his words were poignant and thoughtful.  In his eyes, God is his cheerleader.  He said, "Mommy, God is always there to cheer me on!"  "He tells me, come on Jordan, don't make that bad choice."  "You can do better." 

Wow!  What a beautiful portrayal of God's kindness and encouragement for each of us.  When you feel like you need a cheerleader on life's journey, remember my son's portrayal of Christ!  God is there for you....ALWAYS! (Posted by Renee)

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Fantasy KIDS = Fantasy WORLD

My boys enjoy video games, like most kids.  This generation is so stimulated by those interactive games that it has seeped into our classrooms.  My 4th grader has to complete homework every night on a private educational website that looks similar to Facebook.

Normally, when my boys play on the weekends, I snuggle into take a nap.  It is one of the RARE times in my house that it is quiet.  The other times at home are filled with rowdy boys making crazy noises with their body parts.  

With a simple xbox controller they can CREATE themselves in this fantasy world.  They choose from a plethora of features like eyewear, skin color, hair style, shoes, body type, etc.  They have the ability to build the perfect athlete, with the perfect skills and stamina.  No work has been done to achieve all this, just a little boys creative imagery.  My youngest always HAS to win.  If he doesn't, he carries around an attitude all day, as if he's played a real game - but remember it's all FANTASY.

In the middle of the game, they can switch out players, determine what they will say in the "post news conferences" and even watch as their fantasy player is traded or becomes MVP.  I just shake my head and think, we are raising a society of children and adults that don't know how to deal with their current realities.

What's happened to critical thinking?  Have a problem - find a solution!  

Everything can be altered to create the perfect storm for success in the fantasy world.  It's not just kids but even adults who embrace this illusion of reality.  Have you heard of FANTASY FOOTBALL?  Ok, I think I've made my point.

The reality is, life is a process.  It is a series of experiences that have the ability to grow and mature us.  God, thankfully, does not work on our timeline. We can't become frustrated when "miracles" don't happen overnight. 

The REALITY is - God has eternity as His arsenal of timing.  We live in a world where, hard work should still be valued OVER a spirit of entitlement.   

Colossians 3:23-24New International Version (NIV)

23 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, 24 since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward.  It is the Lord Christ you are serving.

As you start this week wishing for that fantasy job, press on knowing that your hard work does not go in vain.  You can be changing diapers, directing school traffic, flying an airplane or an environmental engineer on a major project - your work and service is unto HIM.  Put in the hard work, understanding that your reward will come in due season.  (Posted by Roslyn)