Tag Archives: family devotional

Trust in the Lord with ALL your heart

 

Several years ago I was listening to a high school age young man practicing his sermon for a youth event with his church. His theme scripture was Proverbs 3:5-6 which says “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.”

The young man’s example of trust was his alarm clock. He trusted it to wake him up in time for school. Every night he went to sleep without worrying about whether or not he would be able to catch the bus on time because he trusted his alarm clock would keep doing its job.

God is far more faithful and trustworthy than an alarm clock, but we don’t always trust God.

Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commandments.” Deuteronomy 7:9

We KNOW that God is faithful. He has given us a covenant (a contract, an agreement) of his love. Unlike humans, God will never break a covenant or contract. In fact, saying He keeps this covenant of love to 1,000 generations is a symbolic way of saying He will keep it indefinitely.

…if we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot disown Himself.” 1 Timothy 2:13

Even when we break our promises, even when we aren’t faithful God is still faithful. Unlike an alarm clock which may run out of power,  God’s faithfulness never fails.

As I listened to that young man speak I kept having more examples of misplaced trust pop into my head. I thought about how we trust food processing companies to only sell things that are safe and healthy. I thought about how we trust pharmaceutical companies to only develop drugs that will help us and not harm us. I thought about how we trust government agencies to adequately test all new medicines, all new food additives, all new technologies before letting them be used in our homes. We trust man made flavorings and colors. We trust bioengineered food. We trust that government ideas and policies and mandates are really in our best interest.

We place our trust in all kinds of things that may or may not be deserving of trust.

It’s time for the alarm clock to sound! It’s time to place our trust in the One who created us, the One who knew us before we were even born.

Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest on the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.‘” Psalm 91:1-2

It’s time for us to stand up and declare “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust!”

I am spending some of my social-distancing-isolation-quarantine time diving into God’s word. I am also praying more and learning more about Christian meditation. Even though I have been reading the Bible for probably 50 years (it’s weird to realize that!) I am still learning new things, discovering new things, and I’m eager to read and study more each day!  I used to think I knew a lot about the Bible, but now I am realizing how much I still have to learn!

Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and shun evil. This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones.” Proverbs 3:7-8

It is no surprise that trusting God is good for your body as well as your soul. When we start trusting God we can stop worrying about everything and trying to manage everything ourselves and instead we can give our cares and worries to God!

What amazing freedom and relief from stress that is! To be free from worry!

Cast all your anxiety on Him because he cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7

I pray you can find time with your family in the next few days to read these scriptures together and talk about them. One of the blessings of having to stay home is all of the opportunities parents and children have to talk about anything and everything!

Questions to ask yourself and your kids:

  1. What do we trust in every day?
  2. When have we made a promise? Did you keep the promise or did you break it?
  3. What things do we worry about?
  4. Bonus questions – can you name other covenants that are common today?
  5. Bonus questions – how long is a generation? how many years is 1,000 generations?

Enjoy spending time talking with your family. I also hope you are cooking together as a family too!

Wise Men Still Seek Him, a Family Christmas Lesson

 

Amahl and the Nigh Visitors is an opera that tells about the Kings stopping for the night at the home of a poor, crippled shepherd boy and his widowed mother. King Kaspar has a very special box which makes Amahl very curious.

Our gift to you this season!

Here is Number Three in a series of lessons I have written for family Bible study or homeschool devotional time. The lessons should work for approximately ages 6 to 13, but younger or older children are certainly able to participate!

Here is Lesson One: The Prophets Foretell Jesus’ Birth

Here is Lesson Two: Jesus is Born!

Click here to download lesson three.

What is this lesson about?

Once again we begin with a memory verse, because we feel it is very important for everyone to memorize God’s word. This builds confidence for further memory work, and also gives us each a personal library of scripture to reference whenever we need it.

Lesson Three goes into detail about who the Wise Men, or Magi, really were, how they give us a great example to follow, and what their gifts symbolize.

Special gifts you can make for friends and family included

As with the other lessons I have included sections to bring the lesson to life in many ways. There is a delicious spice cake recipe that makes enough to share with friends and family as a special gift this Christmas season. When you give them the cake you can also tell them about the Wise Men and how we are also wise today when we seek Jesus!

Also included in the lesson is a recipe to make a healing salve with frankincense and myrrh essential oils that makes enough to share. Plus a link to a heartwarming family holiday opera to watch, and lessons about art and history, too!

How do I use this lesson?

The lesson is long, and you can break it up into sections to complete over a series of days or evenings to help bring your family’s focus back to the true meaning of Christmas.

Going Further

When you finish this lesson you can continue the discussion with your older children and teens about how we arrived at December 25th as the date to celebrate Christ’s birth. Use this link to read more.

Click here to download Lesson Three

Merry Christmas!

Jesus is Born! A Family Christmas Lesson

This painting by Bernardino Pinturicchio hangs in the church of Santa Maria del Popolo in Rome. The photo is from our family’s trip to Rome in 2010.

Our gift to you this season!

This is the second in a series of lessons I have written that are appropriate for a family Bible study or homeschool  devotional time. The lessons are suitable for approximately ages 6 to 13, but younger children can be included with some extra explanations from mom or dad. Older children of course can participate! They will probably have their own insight to share.

(Here is the link for Lesson One: The Prophets Foretell Jesus’ Birth )

Click HERE to download the lesson.

What is this lesson about?

Each lesson begins with a memory verse. It is so important that our children, and parents too!, are able to memorize portions of God’s word and, as the Psalm says, hide it in our hearts.

This lesson contains several sections to help link the wonderful story of Jesus’ birth to music, art and history. Of course there is also a recipe – this is Well Fed Family after all!

How do I use this lesson?

The lesson is somewhat long for smaller children to sit through all at once. I like taking each section, or maybe two sections together, and stretching the lesson out over a few days or evenings. Give your children time to really study the art examples and then create their own masterpiece. Take time to sing the selected Christmas carols together as a family. Maybe you can find performances of these songs to listen to on YouTube or Pandora, or maybe someone in your family plays a musical instrument and can read the music provided and play for your family.

The Writer of the Gospel of Luke

This lesson focuses on passages from the Gospel of Luke. For a journalist’s perspective on Luke’s writing and reporting style you and your older children might be interested in Jamie Dean’s commentary on The World and Everything In It from December 12, 2018. Use this as a starting point for some family discussions on Christian worldview.

Click HERE to download the lesson!

Merry Christmas!