Wednesday, May 16, 2018

The Teaching Of A Mother

When thinking about a mother we tend to think, loving, caring, compassionate, devoted and all around a great person, but is this truly all a mother is? What does it take to be a mother? The following represents the duties a mother should expect to fulfill in her daily life; Encourager, Personal Chef, Head Cheerleader, Housekeeper, Sacrificial Giver, Taxi Driver, Photographer, PhD in Anger Management, Hair Stylist, Spiritual Advisor, Keeper of Secrets, Nurse, Food Tester, Alarm Clock, Family Therapist, Toddler Wrestling Coach, Errand Runner, Laundry Machine Operator, Janitor, Teacher, Toy Repair Expert, Finance Manager, Chief Craft Creator, Landscaper, Potty Trainer, Keeper of the Band-Aids, Champion Tickler, Lifeguard, Personal Assistant, Hostess, Wardrobe Stylist , Personal Shopper, Toothbrush Inspector, PTA Mom, Play-date Coordinator, Birthday Events Director, Sleep Scientist, Scary Monster Patrol Officer, Dramatic Story Teller, Backyard Safety Patrol, Professional Bedtime Singer, Boo-Boo Fixer, Kiss and Hug Expert, Vacation Coordinator & Tour Guide, PhD in Reverse Psychology, Separation Anxiety Counselor, In-Law Mediator, Seamstress of Frilly Dresses and Super Hero Costumes, Mrs. Fix-It, Fort Engineer, Stain Removal Expert, Bodyguard, Lady MacGyver, Nurturer, Plumber, Nutritionist, Interior Designer, the list continues. But of all the responsibilities of a mother maybe the most important one is being a leader and more specifically leading your children to Christ. 

Leading your child to Christ is one of the most critical jobs a mother has. Your example is one they are looking to each day and each moment. You lead them in the way that they should go, support them in the trials that face them, and help them to depend on God and trust Him for their every need, showing them by example what a true Christian walk looks like. Being a leader is a difficult job. You're under immense pressure and feel as though you cannot ever mess up and must be perfect at every turn. As humans, perfection is unattainable (I John 1:8), but as a mother we strive for it nonetheless. The ‘perfection’ God is looking for is not the same perfection we attempt to attain, but rather a perfection in your willingness to keep trying when you fall (Psalm 27:24).
Perhaps being a teacher is the second most important role as a mother. The Bible instructs us as mothers (parents) to diligently teach our children the commandments and talk of them daily, in our house, when we walk, when we lay them down to sleep, and when they rise in the morning (Deuteronomy 6:6). We are to train up a child in the way he should go; so even when he is old he will not depart from it (Proverbs 22:6), we are instructed to teach them so they can hear the Word and make a commitment for themselves to serve the Lord and obey His commandments. We have been given a promise by God that is not only for ourselves, but for our children and their children and every generation to come (Acts 2:39).

As a mother, we are blessed with our children, “children are an heritage of the Lord: and the fruit of the womb is his reward” (Psalm 127:3). The Lord requires not that we be a ‘good mom’ in the eye of the world but that we are a godly mom, and raise our children in love, discipline, nurturing them, teaching them, modeling integrity, and above all leading them to Him. No, we are not perfect, nor will we ever be, if you think you are, take another look (Galatians 6:3).
When I think of the mother I want to be, I’m drawn to the Proverbs 31 woman.  If we will strive to be that woman our children will rise and call us blessed, and truly that is the blessing I wish for every mother, that you be blessed; not just by your children, but by the Lord. 

“Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life. She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands. She is like the merchants' ships; she bringeth her food from afar. She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens. She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard. She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms. She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night. She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff. She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy. She is not afraid of the snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet. She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her clothing is silk and purple. Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land. She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant. Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come. She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness. She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness. Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her. Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all. Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised. Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.”

-Written By Meghan West

Friday, April 27, 2018

Committed To Serve

Committed To Serve

Thinking back to my teenage years.... every Thursday evening after dinner, my parents would run errands and leave my older sister, my younger brother and I to do dishes and clean house. Each of us would have been assigned chores that were expected to be finished by the time they came home that evening. To a teenager who didn't care to do housework, that couple of hours my parents would be gone seemed like an eternity! We had quite a list and did not have time to play or dilly dally. My parents instilled in all of us a work ethic. 

I didn't realize back then that not only was I taught work was important, but I also learned that knowing how to work would give me a sense of accomplishment and it also gave me the ability to help and serve others as I aged. I can tell you that mopping floors, sweeping carpets and stairs, cleaning bathrooms, and polishing furniture was no picnic. We didn't jump for joy when Thursday came around knowing there was not only homework and dishes to do, but our bedrooms also had to be in order. Yes, there would be times we tried to get out of some responsibilities, but ultimately, we wanted our parent's approval and knew shortcuts were bad decisions.

Now that I am older I find that "work" can be a friendly word when it comes to helping or serving others. Paul wrote in Titus 2:7, "In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works...". In Verse 9 he says, "Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own masters, and to please them well in all things; not answering again;" (or, don't talk back).
Jesus said in Mark 9:35, "....If any man desire to be first, the same shall be last of all, and servant of all." Over and over again Jesus stressed and told parables and stories concerning servanthood. He demonstrated at the Last Supper His own servant attitude when He washed the Disciple's feet. In Luke 22:27 He said, "...I am among you as he that serveth."

In the Old Testament, Ruth was a wonderful example of a servant, not by profession, but in her attitude, especially toward her mother-in-law, Naomi. How many daughters-in-law would leave their own family they are so close to to follow their bitter, widowed mother-in-law to a strange land and culture where they knew no one? What would drive an outsider and a heathen such as Ruth to do such a kind and committed act toward Naomi and a people who had been enemies of her people? What would cause Ruth to express compassion to her mother-in-law after bidding her and her sister-in-law to go back to their own mothers to say in Ruth 1:16-17, "... Entreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God: Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the LORD do so to me, and more also, if ought but death part thee and me."
Ruth was a reminder to Naomi of her loss, yet she was committed. There was something Ruth picked up in her 10 years of knowing her in-laws that endeared her to Naomi and her people and was willing to leave everything she had ever known in her world to serve a strange people and their God. In Ruth 1:14 it says, "...but Ruth clave unto her". She was fastened to Naomi and wasn't budging! She was willing to do whatever she needed to, even to die for Naomi. This was no easy task and would have taken long serious thought in order to make such a life decision!

Ruth had a committed servant's heart! The book of Ruth tells us that she was willing to work to provide sustenance for Naomi and herself by going out to the fields with the reapers to glean corn. She happened upon part of a field belonging to Boaz, a relative of her deceased father-in-law, and she quickly found favor with him. It was revealed to Boaz everything Ruth did for Naomi and he wanted to reward her and protect her. Then eventually, he married her. Because of her commitment and willingness to serve someone who should have been an enemy, God showed her favor and He blessed her. Ruth eventually became the great grandmother of David and in Matthew 1:5 she is mentioned in the lineage of Jesus.
Hard work and servanthood is synonymous in God's Kingdom just like obedience and humility. When we are committed to serve our sisters (and brothers) in The Lord, or anyone for that matter, even an "enemy," and we serve with a willing and pure heart whether we agree with them or not, there are rewards awaiting us. They may not be apparent at the moment we think they should be, but in God's time, whether it is here in this life or the next, we shall reap our reward.

Galatians 6:9 says: "And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not".

Who knew all those years ago when I was washing windows and weeding gardens as a youth that some day blessings would come my way in commitment to doing for others? And believe me, they have. Paul said in Acts 20:35, "...It is more blessed to give than to receive." Whether we serve by giving of ourselves in actions, encouraging words, or offerings, we bless those to whom we are committed to serve and we ourselves are also blessed..... everyone wins!

-Written By: Becky Spann

Monday, March 26, 2018

Christ Is Risen

Hallelujah, Christ is Risen!

When I was approached to write a post for this blog, I admit being a bit out of my element. However, it is hard to run out of things to say about the Lord being risen!

Looking back to 6 years ago before I was in church, I knew there was more to life than what I was living. In fact, I remember a Christian being on campus shouting something about avoiding Hell. At the time, I thought it was hilarious that some weirdo thought anyone on campus cared what he said! The fact that I remember this moment 6 years later tells me a couple things: I actually didn't like the idea of being condemned to hell, but some dude shouting on the sidewalk didn't compel me to seek salvation either. What did compel me to come was a miracle moment and the friendship of a Holy Ghost-filled believer.

Everyone runs into this kind of a moment where they look down and realize they are wearing grave clothes, chained to things of this world that will pass away. Our souls cry out to Jesus no matter our current state of salvation, and Easter is the perfect time to be bold in the spirit and reach out. A seed could be planted, watered, fed, or saved for Easter 2018! However, the person next to you may never know you were thinking about them on a spiritual level if you don't reach out.

So here is my action point for us: be brave for at least three seconds and ask someone if they'd want to come to Easter service with you. Even if 99 people say no, 1 soul coming to repentance is worthy to rejoice and praise the risen King. God bless!

Written By : Tami Hulbert