Parenting: Leveraging Literature for Spiritual Growth

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Engaging children through literature is an easy way to pass on such needed swords in our battle to protect them against the world. And not just protect them, but equip them with the armor of God: the helmet of salvation, the sword of the Spirit.

Reading secular literature as a Christian has been a topic of debate for as long as there have been books and Christians. As parents, we often question whether our children are reading appropriate material at school. We worry they are independently selecting the wrong stories…, stories too violent, or worldly, or sinful. It becomes especially difficult when we see a trend in young adult literature emerging that we aren’t sure is appropriate for our children. Take The Hunger Games for example. This series ignited interest for children who had never read before. Because some parents weren’t reading it for themselves first, there were probably children reading about particular topics that would have been unacceptable to parents if they had known. We must be a critical component in guiding them through secular literature through the eyes of a believer.

As parents we must be intentional with our book choices for our children.

As parents we must be intentional with our book choices for our children.

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Created for Physical Activity

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If you take a moment to daydream about the differences between our lives today and our grandparents or great-grandparents lives years ago, you’ll identify some drastic change.  It really is mind-boggling.

I love the efficiency, productivity and value that technology brings to my life today.  However, for most of us the gift of technology has created a daily routine which repeatedly places us in a comfortable chair sitting in front of a screen for 8-10 hours each day (at a minimum).

The gift of technology has not only changed our work in dramatic ways but it has changed the way we spend our time away from work as well.  Whether sports, movies, reality television, or the latest Disney hit on replay, we spend so much of our time sitting in front of a screen.  Oh, and don’t forget that little screen that once was only for phone calls but now provides all sorts of games and social stalking.

The balance between our physical and spiritual health has suffered a slow but undeniable erosion over many years.

The balance between our physical and spiritual health has suffered a slow but undeniable erosion over many years.

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Are There Better Things to Do on Sunday Morning?

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Recently I had a great conversation with a friend around the complexities of evaluating our priority of ‘attending church.’  There really are a lot of complexities.

After all, perfect church attendance is not how we are rescued into the hope and joy of being in Jesus Christ.  We are instructed to live our entire lives as worship (a living sacrifice), therefore our worship is not confined to a Sunday gathering.  Today, more than ever before, we have great Bible teaching available to us anytime and anywhere through a plethora of podcasts.

The truth is that we have so many demands on our time that this discussion becomes very relevant.  Can we or should we be doing something else each weekend rather than gathering together with the church?  Or, maybe we are asking how important it really is so that we can measure it against the other opportunities that arise on occasion?

Perfect church attendance is not the path to righteousness.  So, where is the line that must be drawn?

Perfect church attendance is not the path to righteousness. So, where is the line that must be drawn?

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Emotion vs. Intellect: Another Battle of Preference?

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Church is something that becomes very personal, at least here in the West.  Too often church also becomes a battlefield where the bloodshed of opposing opinions takes place.  History tells us of controversies ranging from whether or not women should wear pants to the seductive rhythms where drums are present.

In recent days there has been church damaging battles over the appropriateness of hymns or choruses in the worship gathering.  The battles also reach over into the sermon length as well.  In one corner you might hear that a sermon is not a real sermon unless it is 60 minutes and over no more than two verses.  In the other corner are those who define a sermon by twenty-five minutes and an alliteration of five to seven letters that includes marriage or finances.

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There is another division that is a bit less obvious.  It subtly glides below the surface of outward conversation, yet peeks through in smaller huddles.  It is so subtle because it manifests itself in so many different ways.

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Loving Our Sons into Leadership

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The last post highlighted many of the similar principles with which we love our sons and daughters.  There are nuanced differences, but these differences fall short of fully loving our sons into their biblical role of leadership.  Let’s move beyond the basics of the previous posts and look at our unique gift of discipling the next generation of men in Christ’s Church.

As Parents we have the unique opportunity to disciple our sons with the prayerful hope of them growing to be great men who love Jesus and lead in His Church.  As Fathers, we have the unique gift of showing our sons an example of this faithful life lived out daily.

How can we love our sons into biblical leadership?

How can we love our sons into biblical leadership?

Here are a few thoughts on how we can love our sons into biblical leadership:

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