Monday, March 30, 2015

Worship: What's Your Role?

Have you ever gone to a concert, show or sporting event and cheered and yelled so loudly for an artist or sports figure you actually go hoarse from it? Have you watched a sports game and yelled and cheered for your team? Have you just ever wanted so badly to meet, face to face, with a celebrity or sports figure? Did you know these actions can cross into a form of worship for that person? That's not what God intended worship to be, though!

God intended us to only worship Him. In fact, He says so in the Ten Commandments:

It's not enough that we choose to not bow down to celebrities, singers, politicians, sports figures, etc. We must take action, too. Everywhere we read in the Bible about worship, it speaks about a posture. There are things we can do to worship with our body, soul and spirit! Here are some key verses:

  • John 4:24 "Worship in spirit and truth."
  • Genesis 24:26 (Abraham's servant after finding Rebekah who would become Isaac's wife) "Then the man bowed down his head and worshipped the Lord."
  • 2 Chronicles 6:12 (after Solomon had made a bronze platform) he "knelt down on his knees before all the assembly of Israel and spread out his hands toward heaven..."
  • Psalms 143:6 "I spread out my hands to You; My soul longs for You like a thirsty land."
  • Philippians 2:10 " the name of Jesus every knee shall bow, of those in heaven, of those on earth and of those under the earth."
  • Psalms 47:1 "Clap your hands all you people! Shout to God with the voice of triumph!"
So when you worship, think about these postures you can take, this action you can do, worshiping the Lord:
  1. bow down
  2. kneel down
  3. spread out your hands to worship
  4. clap your hands
  5. shout for joy
Worship is the awareness of God's holiness and presence...

Let's be in His presence this week, worshiping the Lord Jesus as we celebrate His life, death and resurrection!!


Monday, March 23, 2015

You Want Favor? Begin to EXPECT It!!

Have you ever had a time when it just seems like everything is going against you? A bill comes in that has to be paid today, the dog threw up in the living room and guests are on their way over, your youngest child had an accident while trying to make it to the potty, a driver cut you off pulling into a parking space, the oil light came on in the car, you mistakenly made two appointments for the same day with two different doctors and for two different children? Maybe it's just me...

These things are simply distractions in our daily walk with the Lord. Paul says in 1 Thessalonians 3:3, "But you know that we are destined for such troubles."

But the favor of God is where our expectations should be, not on what's coming next to take us down! In Psalm 41:11

He favors us in all that we do! We're blessed, and blessing equals favor.

Are expecting the worst? Or are you expecting God's favor in your life?  Purpose to look for His favor working for YOU today!!


Friday, March 20, 2015

Friday 'Fess Up

Every once in while, I get in a mood or get an attitude. I don't want to do this or do that. I just want someone to justify me having an attitude because I didn't sleep well or moody because of hormones or cranky because I didn't have caffeine today or because nothing goes my way and EVERYONE is against me.

Does any of this sound like something you've done? If not, great! But there are times in my days that I just want to complain or whine or pout or yes! Maybe throw a temper tantrum because life feels out of control and that's how I deal with it. But I have a choice to make! I can sit and continue to feel sorry for myself and allow myself to be in a bad mood that will ultimately effect my husband, my kids, those around, and even strangers! OR I can choose to not be in control, give it all over to God and focus on Him manifesting the solution in my life, giving me peace, and making my day a great one.

Which seems better to you? 

If you happen to find yourself in a situation where you just want to whine or you snap at people, consider your choices: continue to have an attitude or choose not to allow that in your life and give it over to God!


Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Homeschool Hump Day Encouragement

Textbooks and workbooks and printables, Oh, my!

If you are  new to homeschooling, you no doubt have seen the vast collection of curricula available to us. Everything from hard cover textbook to spiral bound workbook, videos to CDs. It can be overwhelming to consider which path to choose for schooling your children! So which path do you choose?

I was talking with a friend who is new to homeschooling. She had so many questions about the variety of teaching tools available and where to begin, that she was practically in tears. I could tell she was overwhelmed, so I simply mentioned that until her child is in 3rd grade (or thereabouts), should could utilize those workbooks sold at stores like Walmart and Target. School Zone is one brand and I used them with all of my children. Comprehensive Curriculum of Basic Skills is another.

As the children need more variety in the delivery of skills mastery, I turn to printables. These are worksheets found on websites that can be printed off for use as needed. Some of my favorite sites are:
Math Fact Cafe
ABC Teach
Writing Wizard

I have used these for years and find these Websites provide a strong tool for reinforcing skills.

As for textbook, I didn't begin to collect these until my oldest was in Fourth Grade. I chose non-consumables (books that can't be written in and can be used by a umber of students year after year). Consumables are workbooks that can be used once usually by just one student and must be replaced. This will be a decision you make for your family based on how many children you have and if the others will be homeschooled as well.

Whatever type of curriculum you choose for your family, know that there is no right or wrong. You are not a cookie cutter homeschooling family. Your school doesn't look like mine and that is okay! 

You've got this, Homeschooling Mama!!


Monday, March 16, 2015

New Week, New Mercies

I don't know about you, but I had a pretty tough week. I had an attitude problem with some people, treated a few harsher than they deserved, and I didn't sleep well so I allowed myself to be cranky toward the ones I love. At one point, I felt as though I had disappointed God so deeply that I could not even think about coming to Him about my behavior.

But then I re-read this verse:

See, even if I screwed up the way I should have acted, things I should have said and the amount of time I should have spent in the Word and repenting for my actions yesterday, His mercies are new every morning. It's like getting an opportunity to start over each day. And this time, I get to choose how I react to those people who I allowed to annoy me, choose to be gentler to others even if they are harsh to me, and to not make excuses for my own stinking attitude and behavior toward my family.

This is a new week and that means His mercies start new TODAY...and TOMORROW AND the next day!!

Whatever happened yesterday, whatever shortcomings you feel you had (real or perceived), His mercies are new to us so we can start over fresh.

Make a choice to not let what happened yesterday condemn you today...His mercies are new to you and me--TODAY!!


Friday, March 13, 2015

Friday 'Fess Up

Every Thursday, my children attend a supplemental school to give them opportunities that homeschooling alone cannot offer. Things like musical theatre, choir, music lessons, certain academic classes, and computer programming to name a few. The kids are there at the school for 8 hours and when I pick them up, I can't wait to spend time with them! I truly miss my children when they aren't with me.
The school they attend that one day a week is about 30 miles from our house, so I do get to spend time with my older daughter, too. But I miss when my chicks aren't all together and I look forward to when we get to talk about the day on the drive home.
Some people think I'm strange for wanting to be with my children all the time. But it's what's in my keep them all close to me.

What things do you enjoy most about your time with your children?


Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Homeschool Hump Day Encouragement

Homeschooling Mama, are you feeling overwhelmed by some of the subjects your child has to be YOU?! Well, don't stress about this area because I know that God puts people in our lives for a reason. I am proof that even when you don't like a particular subject (for me, it's MATH!), God will bring someone into your path that can and will help you by filling that void.
Math and I have never really been best friends. More like that friend you want to like, but you just don't quite understand so it's easier just to ignore...I digress. So a couple of friends of mine who absolutely LOVE math began meeting with kids from our church to tutor them in--MATH! It was then, and has been nearly two years later, such a blessing to me! These people are God sends!

On the other hand, one subject I really do enjoy is English and language arts. Well, I never dreamed that God would use me in a similar manner to help tutor some of my children's friends in everything from basic language arts to college level literature and English! I am in such a wonderful place with these kids and being able to share what I like with them in a way they can relate to and fully understand.

So when you hit those science or math or English levels and you just don't know where to turn, trust the Lord to bring the right people into your life to help. After all, isn't that what we're called to do for our brethren?


Monday, March 9, 2015

Believing What You Read

If you're like me, you read the stories of the Bible and look on them as lessons. Maybe of what TO do in life and maybe of what NOT to do. We believe the Bible is a living manual, the very Word of God to us. But how many times have we read a Scripture, even spoken it out, but maybe we didn't wholeheartedly believe what we were reading would or COULD happen?

May I encourage you with this one phrase from Mark 11:22-23...

I understand it is difficult to believe that the Lord wants to restore our relationships, bring us from poverty to prosperity, or even heal us completely from chronic sicknesses and diseases, especially when we constantly see the dissolved marriages, overdrawn bank accounts, and regular reports of widespread sickness. But if we fix our eyes on Him and understand that Jesus took not only our sins and shortcomings on Himself but also our sickness and disease, then we can walk in the knowledge that we can cast off Satan's hold on us in those areas!

God gave us the authority to overcome those areas of lack, destruction, and stolen things in our lives! But it's not enough for us to possess that authority, the power of God's Word spoken. We must use it for it to be effective! And don't keep going back to what you see going on in your life. God has sent the solution to your situation and it's on its way!!

Speak reconciliation over your life (Romans 5:11). Speak prosperity over your life (3 John 1:2). Speak healing over your life (Isaiah 53:5, 1 Peter 2:24). There are many more verses to speak over these common areas where Satan tries to kill, steal and destroy us, but these will get you started. Start speaking the Word and believing it NOW!

Read the Word, speak the Word and believe what the Lord says in His Word WILL COME TO PASS!!