Saturday, October 23, 2010

What Can It Hurt?

Finally brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble,
whatever things are just, whatever things are pure,
whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report,
if there is any virtue, if there is anything praiseworthy-meditate on these things.
The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me,
these do, and the God of peace will be with you.
-Philippians 4:8-9

The hit TV show "Glee!" seems harmless, right? A series about a high school glee club. Okay, so the cheerleader is pregnant out of wedlock and the teacher's wife fakes a pregnancy to stay married to him while he is lusting after another maybe not so harmless. Then there are the photos. A recent photo shoot (no I will not post any of them nor a link to them...if you must see, then I am sure you can search and get plenty of hits) for GQ Magazine of the cast of Glee! has caused some amount of controversy. The photos are of the scantily-clad cast (at least the ladies are scantily-clad) in provocative and compromising poses. The argument is that these are not high school students in real life, they are actors and actresses in their mid-twenties and that gives them the right to do whatever they want with respect to posing and wardrobe, what can it hurt?

So we ask our tween and teen children to believe that these are peers, kids their own age, when watching the show....but then expect that they will understand that they are really actors that are much older and are able to do things that are not appropriate for the characters they portray on TV.

I think we are overestimating the ability of 12-17 year old childrento be discerning and underestimating the influence these TV stars have on our children.

It makes me think, how often do we say "what does it hurt, just this one time?" or "it's not THAT bad." How bad does it have to be for us to say "STOP", "ENOUGH"? God makes it clear that we are to guard ourselves from the influence of the world. We are to focus on noble and true. In a world that pushes young girls to grow up and dress older like small adults and value physical beauty and material things, we are called to keep our focus on Him and the treasures of heaven.

The wonderful thing is that this commandment comes with a promise...the peace of God! That is the beauty of our Lord and Savior, he demands much, but promises so much more than this world can ever give us.

So I challenge you to draw the line, to say "enough", to see that it DOES hurt, even just this once and it is THAT bad. Draw nearer to God and away from the world and enjoy the promise of peace!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


"Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication,

with thanksgiving, let your requests be known unto God; and the peace of God,

which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts

and minds through Christ Jesus."

Philippians 4:6-8

These are such familiar and reassuring words, but how often do we actually put them into practice. "Be anxious for nothing"...I know for me that is a huge obstacle! How often do I worry about finances, my children, health, work, all kinds of things. So often I turn things over to God in prayer only to take them back moments later.

Recently I have been facing an issue in my personal life that I have desperately needed to trust God with. Yet daily, I try to take it back and solve it myself. I worry over what may happen, even though I know I cannot control the future, only He can. Even though He has shown me over and over that He is in absolute control in my life, I let the lies of the enemy creep and foster doubt and worry in my mind.

That's the real truth of worry and is spawned by the lies of Satan. The Great Deceiver will allow thoughts to infiltrate our minds and turn into worry and anxiety. Often they are disguised as the opinions of "experts" or even friends. The world does not encourage us to rely on God, it encourages us to rely on self, which is a prime opportunity for Satan to do his work.

But God has a beautiful plan for your life and mine. He does not want us to be anxious about our future, he has numbered our days and knows everything about our lives...past, present and future. He promises us peace, not happiness, not worldly things, but true and lasting peace. He wants to carry our burdens for us...will you let Him?

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Falling in Love

"It oughta be....

more like falling in love

than something to believe in

more like losing my heart

than pledging my allegiance."

-Jason Gray

Lord, I want to fall in love with You every day of my life. I want to lose my heart to You each and every moment. Let me meet you in the living room of my heart daily to fellowship with and learn from You. Fan the flames of desire in my heart for You. Let me choose You over all else.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Lessons from a Sponge I admit, I have let my children watch the dreaded of all cartoons...Spongebob Squarepants. But recently, I learned a lesson from our little yellow friend.

My husband and I determined over the summer that we would begin homeschooling our three children this Fall (ages 8, 5 and 2). However, with my husband attending Bible college full-time and working 3/4 time and me still working outside the home full time, we decided to send Logan (8) and Emma (5) to the local elementary school instead. We came up with a variety of excellent "reasons"...but looking back, they were really excuses. Needless to say, we are spending this year preparing to home school next year.

One of the many things I dislike about public education, perhaps the biggest one, is the drive to put children in a "normal" box. Standardized tests, large class sizes, and unbending teaching techniques encourage sameness, often referred to as "equality" (it sounds less intimidating that way). And if my child doesn't fit into that box? Well, we can label him or her with a disorder and medicate them until the do fit!

Don't misunderstand...I am not saying all teachers try to "equalize" their students. In fact, I think there are many teachers that encourage individuality and uniqueness in their students. However, those teachers are not supported by the administration of the education system in our public schools. I also don't think that ADHD and ADD are "fake" disorders, but I think they are over-diagnosed and medication is over-prescribed to make children more compliant and less active in the classroom.

So back to my lesson from Spongebob...on a recent episode he had a desire to become "normal" to fit in with his friend Squidward. So he changed his appearance, his living arrangements, his clothing, his job, his voice, virtually everything about him that made him an individual. The end result was that he was to "normal" for even Squidward!

So the lesson learned is..."normal" is not always better. In fact, God calls us to be outside the mainstream, to be "abnormal". We are sanctified by God, set apart as His children. I don't want to relate to a worldly culture, I don't want my children to fit inside a nice, normal box. I want people to look at me and my family and say..."what is different about them?". I want that difference to be GOD!