As Christian parents, is it enough to take your kids to church every Sunday? Absolutely not. We need to find every opportunity possible to teach them about God. We need to start them at a young age of reading their Bible every day and learning how to pray. They need to lean about God through the examples that we set – how we spend our money, the words we use and the tones in which they are said, what we watch on TV, and how we react in rush hour traffic. The need to see mom and dad modeling a Christian marriage. Every moment of every day. That’s what God expects from us.
In Deuteronomy God said we are to be diligent about teaching them the ways of God. We should be teaching them at home, on the road, walking through the park, as they lay down to sleep each night, and the first thing when they wake up in the morning. We should teach them to recognize God’s blessing and to hear His “still, small voice.” We should teach them about tithing. We should teach them to be servant leaders. We should teach them to bear the image of Christ. We should teach them to be salt and light in the world. We should teach them to love their neighbors – no matter who they are and without prejudice. We should help them memorize Bible verses to hide in their hearts. We should teach them songs that honor and glorify God and teach them how to thank Him for everything.
Did you notice the word that is used here for what parents are supposed to do? We are to diligently teach them to our children. Another translations says, “Impress them on your children…” When does something leave an impression? Let’s say you have some cast iron chairs on your deck or porch that have a pattern on them. If you sit on that chair for even a few moments, it will leave an impression on your backside, but quickly fade once you get up. But if you sit on it for 60 minutes, you’re going to be walking around with an impression on your backside for quite some time. The longer you sit, the greater impression it leaves. God wants us to spend time with him and his Word so that he may leave a lasting impression on us. The more time we spend with God’s Word the greater impression it leaves on us. It is an impression of God’s love, faithfulness, power and promises. An impression that reminds us of just how valuable our relationship with Christ actually is. When we model that to our children, it will leave a lasting impression on them.
For fathers, you have the opportunity and responsibility of leading your family and growing them spiritually. But good spiritual leadership doesn’t happen by accident. It requires a deliberate investment of yourself into the people in your home. It begins with your own spiritual leadership. You cannot invest into the spiritual development of your family if you are not first investing in your own. Husbands and fathers only lead well when they have paid careful attention to their character and ensure they are both teaching and modeling Godly character. You need to remember that they know you better than any other person, so you won’t be able to hide even small character flaws from them. Your life is their model, and they will be following your lead. To lead your family intentionally, you need to have a plan for yourself. Ask yourself the question: “Do I have a plan for my development and growth as a man, husband, and father?” If not, you better get one, because your leadership is only as good as your plan—and subsequently how you work that plan.
As a husband, everything you do to nurture your relationship with your wife will have a direct impact on the overall health of your entire family. How you love your wife, honor her, respect her, listen to her, and forgive her not only teaches your children how to treat others, but it also prepares them for their own future marriage relationship. Your sons are learning everything about how to treat a woman by watching you and how you treat your wife. Your daughters are learning about how a man should treat them. Ask yourself: “Do I want my children to have the same kind of relationship with their spouse as I do with my wife?”
As a wife, everything you do to nurture your relationship with your husband will also have a direct impact on your entire family. How you love your husband, honor him, respect him, submit to him, listen to him, and forgive him, teaches your children about God’s design for a Christian marriage. Your daughters are watching you and learning these vital relationship skills that she will carry into her own marriage relationship one day. Momma’s, ask yourself: “Do I want my daughter to have the same kind of marriage relationship with her spouse as I do with my husband?”
Parenting is tough. It’s hard work. It takes investing time, effort, and energy. That can be hard after a long day at work – but it’s an investment that has lifelong dividends. Even simple investments in the life of your children will demonstrate your love for them and show them they are important to you. In the dairy of Winston Churchill’s father, he penned, “Spent the day fishing with Winston. A day wasted.” Leading our children requires us to have an invested relationship with them. That means we can’t sit on the couch with the remote or game controller in our hand and issue commands or ignore the kids. Their life is directly impacted by the investment of your time. Be present with them in pursuits that matter to them. Engage casually with them. Take them for one-on-one dinners. Ask them for prayer requests and pray for them and with them. Extend grace to them when needed. Show them how to do something new, such as building something together, working on a car or a home repair project together. Maybe your something new looks more like teaching a craft or hobby such as crochet, sewing, baking, etc. Or refurbishing a piece of antique furniture together. Have a significant, age appropriate talk with them on a controversial topic and be sure you are showing them in God’s Word what God has to say on the topic. From time to time, ask them about their “high and low of the day” and discover their challenges and disappointments. If you find that spending time with them feels like wasted time, they are likely to spend their entire lives trying to prove their worth to you or trying to earn your love and respect. Is the non-verbal message you are sending to them saying they are waste of your time or that they are valued and loved and worth your time? Just as Jesus invested in his disciples by spending time with them gave them the skills they needed for the work He was calling them to do, so your spending time with your children will prepare and equip them for the life they will have.
Every parent messes up at times. But even the “mess ups” become opportunities for teaching children about God’s grace and forgiveness. It also empowers them with the skills for extending grace and forgiveness to others. Don’t allow your pride to keep you from saying, “Son, I was wrong. I need you to forgive me.” Then use your “mess up” as grounds for teaching them what God says and about how God forgives us. When you become vulnerable an real with your children by sharing your failures with them, they will soak up your values, beliefs, and faith.
No matter the age of your children, the years you have them at home to influence them are short. Before you know they will be grown adults and stepping out into the world on their own. You will never get those years back. You will never get a “do over.” So invest in them by modeling Godly behavior, developing them spiritually, and investing your time with them.
God, thank you for the blessing of our children. Bringing them up in the admonition of the Lord is hard work, but with Your help, we commit to raising them in the full knowledge of who you are. Help us to parent them well, teaching them diligently about your commandments and love for them. Help us to model obedience to Your Word as we diligently train them every moment of every day in every circumstance.
Below are some resources on Christian Parenting from Christian Book Distributors:
Shepherding a Child’s Heart, Revised and Updated – By Tedd Tripp / Shepherd Press
Many parenting books are based on hit-or-miss theories steeped in secular thinking. This one draws from Pastor Tripp’s seasoned experience as a father-and from God’s Holy Word. Grounded in the Bible’s divine plan for parenting, this guide defines your goals as a parent and provides the Scriptural methods for accomplishing them.
Praying Circles Around Your Children – By Mark Batterson / Zondervan
Become a praying parent! Based on his bestseller The Circle Maker, Mark Batterson shares five key lessons to help you become extraordinary influences in your children’s lives. With biblical insights and practical advice, he illustrates how to create prayer lists unique to your family, claim God-inspired promises for your children, and discover their individual life themes.
Parenting: 14 Gospel Principles That Can Radically Change Your Family –
By Paul David Tripp / Crossway
In Parenting: 14 Gospel Principles That Can Radically Change Your Family, author Paul David Tripp explores 14 practical and gospel-centered principles that will help parents see their role through the lens of God’s Word and change the way they interact with their children. Principles include grace, identity, lies, authority, foolishness, and character.
Raising Giant-Killers: Releasing Your Child’s Divine Destiny Through Intentional Parenting – By Bill Johnson with Beni Johnson / Chosen
Discover the keys to successful parenting in God’s kingdom! The Johnsons help you gain the wisdom and practical tools to shape your children’s hearts, minds, and values. As you help them follow the Lord’s destiny for their lives, you’ll lead them to become the awesome people he created them to be. 239 pages, hardcover from Chosen.
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Don’t forget to learn this week’s memory verse:
Don’t forget to learn this week’s memory verse:
1 Chronicles 28:9
Know the God of your father, and serve Him with a whole heart and a willing mind; for the LORD searches all hearts, and understands every intent of the thoughts. If you seek Him, He will let you find Him.
Meditate and apply:
Will you commit to praying with us in 2020 that God will revive His people, renew our faith, and redeem our land? We feel such an urgency and desperation for revival. If God is moving your heart for revival, write your revival prayer in the comments along with your state or country.
#knowGod #headknowledge #heartknowledge #revivalinAmerica #revivalin2020 #WCM
This week’s featured design is taken from Matthew 17:20. A mustard seed is tiny; yet that is all the faith it takes to move mountains. Don’t be afraid to use your faith.
You’ll find this week’s design in two formats: a floral and a “mustard label.” Available in tees for men, women, kids, mugs, bags, and other products. The design is also available in white print or black. Check them out in the Spreadshirt shop.
All proceeds go to the advancement of Wellspring Christian Ministries.
Thank you for helping us grow!
#mustardseed #faith #notafraidtouseit #teespring #spreadshop
BOOKING NOW! Be a host site for the NEW God, Love & Marshmallow Wars Book Tour & Couples Conference:
This event helps couples understand why the daily activities found in the book will equip them to build a stronger marriage and the book provides them with 365 intentional activities to take what they learn at the event and apply it on a daily basis. Through the event, couples will discover the Biblical “why” behind the categories of activities found in the book and the “how” these activities are important to building a stronger marriage. Focus points of the event includes :
- How memorizing scripture together and studying God’s Word together as they study, meditate and apply scriptures related to marriage and life issues will help them develop marriages that honor God.
- Why utilizing fun conversation starters that spark meaningful conversations will keep interest alive as they continually learn new things about each other.
- Why keeping romance alive is essential to intimacy and connectivity.
- How making memories and working together builds relationship investment bonds and how these investment bonds can become the knots that keeps them together through the tough times.
- How they can understand what they are or are not contributing to the marriage as well as how they might be contributing to problems or potential problems within the relationship through the use of targeted, intentional personal reflections
- Why it is important that couples never stop dating and how group dates with Christian friends can be both an encouragement and accountability to their own relationship.
During the event, couples will be given an activity from each focus point to do together, making this event an interactive, fun, and engaging event with practical, hands-on learning. Unlike other couple events that are over when the event ends, couples who attend the GLMW event will be able to apply what they learn when utilizing the book on a daily basis for a year. Since the book is not dated, couples are able to reuse the activities year after year to continue being intentional in strengthening their relationship with each other and with God as they strive to live out God’s design for marriage every day.
Learn more about hosting this event at your church or conference site by clicking here.
About the book: The GLMW book contains 365 daily challenges for couples to strengthen their relationships to each other and with God. Couples will complete activities such as Scripture memory, conversation starters, relationship builders, learning about Biblical marriage, romance builders, personal reflections, and date ideas. Click here to purchase your copy. (This link will open a new widow and take you to Westbow Press’ bookstore.) It is also available at Christian Book Distributors, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble
#GLMW #couplesevent #GLMWbook #intentionalmarriage #Godlymarriage
Looking for a keynote speaker for your next ministry event? Julia is now booking for 2019 and 2020 Christian events for women’s and couples’ ministries for both small and large events.
Book with us now.
Julia is CEO of Wellspring Christian Ministries, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping people and couples develop a passionate relationship with God. A public speaker, conference trainer, event planner, and blog writer, Julia is a two-time graduate from Grand Canyon University with a bachelor in Psychology and a masters in Professional Counseling. Saved as a child and raised in church and in a Christian home and private Christian School as a Pastor’s kid, Julia has taught Sunday school, led music, played the piano, served as Children’s Director, and engaged her gifts in many other areas of church life. Previously employed with the Florida Baptist Convention, Julia organized events and led conferences for church ministry assistants. Today, Julia enjoys sharing her journey as a growing Christian with others looking for a deeper connection with God. Through Bible study and her own life experiences, God has given Julia a passion to help couples understand God’s design for marriage while they learn to place God first in their marriage, cultivate meaningful relationships, build intimacy, and address the tougher issues that come in every marriage so that they can experience a marriage that honors and glorifies God. Julia also loves mentoring, teaching, and working with women to help them learn to live as Godly women.
With her history and experience growing up in both small and large churches, Julia enjoys bringing top level quality events to churches of all sizes. Her father largely pastored small churches and therefore she understands that these vital parts of the believing community need to be good stewards of the resources God provides them with. This knowledge inspires her passion for being available with a fresh perspective for those who want to provide their congregations with meaningful spiritual growth opportunities, regardless of size.
Or call us at 904.524.8073
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at CBD through any of these links. Your cost to purchase any item through an affiliate link is the same as purchasing directly from CBD.
Clicking any affiliate link will open a new browser page and take you to Christian Book Distributor’s website.
Check out these items from Christian Book Distributors.
|Made to Move Mountains: How God Uses Our Dreams and Disasters to Accomplish the Impossible
By Kristen Welch / Baker Books
|The Key to Living by Faith (Hebrews)
By Harvest House Publishers
This powerful series is ideal for personal study, small groups, Sunday school classes, family devotions, and discipling others. Days One through Six provide approximately 15 minutes of guided lessons to help you discover God’s precepts, purposes and promises on your own. Questions for group discussion or individual study are provided on Day Seven along with commentary and a memory verse. Find the wisdom you need to address the issues of life and grow closer in your relationship with God.
|Faithful, Abundant, True – Member Book: Three Lives Going Deeper Still
By Beth Moore, Kay Arthur & Priscilla Shirer / Lifeway
The Faithful, Abundant, True: Three Lives Going Deeper Still Member Book is a versatile study guide that can be used in a retreat setting or for a seven-session study. Beth, Kay, and Priscilla each present two weeks of study in a brief format that will take most women 15 to 30 minutes daily. As a bonus, Faithful, Abundant, and True Member Book includes a partnership with HomeLife Magazine in which each of the three speakers’ section also includes an article from HomeLife that illustrates faithfulness, abundance, and truth. The Member Book includes 6 Weeks of Guided Study, a Retreat Plan (great for a Friday evening – Saturday evening schedule), and Group Leader Helps.
|Pursuing A Deeper Faith-Life Principles Study Series Vol 19
By Charles F. Stanley / Thomas Nelson
Each workbook in Charles Stanley’s Life Principles Study Series features ten lessons that include Scripture study, questions for discussion or reflection, and application. In Develop a Closer Relationship with God, Stanley shares God’s invitation to grow in a heart relationship with Him, to hear His voice speaking to your spirit, and to feel a deep assurance that you are locked into a forever relationship that cannot be severed. Perfect for small group studies, a Sunday school class, or individual study.
|Everything is Possible Study Guide: Understanding the Six Phases of Faith
By Rick Warren / Zondervan
How’s your faith? Is it strong or weak? Is it steady or stretched? It’s an important question, because there’s a lot riding on your answer. More importantly, would you like your faith to be stronger? That’s what this six-session video study from ‘America’s most influential spiritual leader’ is all about. Faith, according to Pastor Rick Warren, is like a muscle. It needs to be exercised and developed.
And God uses a predictable pattern and process to build your faith. It’s what Warren calls the Six Phases of Faith. Once you understand these six phases, you can cooperate with God in the process of strengthening your faith and building your character. The Six Phases of Faith is a groundbreaking small group video study with participant’s guide that will help you uncover and participate in God’s unique plan and purpose for your life.
|Mustard Seed Pendant
By Angel Star
Mustard seed pendant features seed surrounded by clear acrylic. 1″ pendant on 18″ nickel free chain with 2″ extender.In the story of the Mustard seed, even with faith the size of this tiny seed, you can still move mountains. These real seeds are reminders that with just a little faith, anything is possible.
|Rounded Mustard Seed Drop Earrings, Silver
By Finesta Corporation
Rounded silver-tone drop earrings with mustard seeds on earring wires. 0.5″.
|Mustard Seed Stone
By Angel Star
Mustard seed pocket stone features Faith with seed surrounded by clear acrylic. 1.25″.In the story of the Mustard seed, even with faith the size of this tiny seed, you can still move mountains. These real seeds are reminders that with just a little faith, anything is possible.
By Jim Cymbala with Dean Merrill / Zondervan
Pastor Jim Cymbala calls us back to a fiery, passionate preoccupation with God that will restore what the enemy has stolen from us: our first love for Jesus, our zeal, our troubled children, our wounded marriages, our broken and divided churches.Born out of the heart and soul of Brooklyn Tabernacle, the message of Fresh Faith is illustrated by true stories of men and women whose lives have been changed through the power of faith.
The same faith that can transform your life – starting today, if you choose.
|Beautiful Outlaw: Experiencing the Playful, Disruptive, Extravagant Personality of Jesus
By John Eldredge / FaithWords
Jesus was accused of breaking the law, keeping bad company, and drinking. He had a sense of humor; his generosity was scandalous; his anger was fearsome; and he said outrageous things. Eldredge replaces our 2-dimensional picture of the Savior with a brilliant portrait—and invites you to experience an intimate relationship with a colorful Christ! 240 pages, softcover from Faithwords.
|Faith Like a Mustard Seed, Matthew 17:20 Bracelet
By Finesta Corporation
Chunky fashion bracelet of purple and silvertone beads with mustard seed cross charm and engraved Scripture tag If you have faith as small as a mustard seed…Nothing will be impossible for you. Matthew 17:20.Textured and engraved beads add style on stretch bracelet with toggle clasp; 7″ stretch bracelet designed to fit the wrist of most women; A unique and beautiful Christian jewelry design to encourage you to trust God.
Please note: the faceted stones on this topselling bracelet may vary in shading depending on the light in which they are photographed.
|Finding God Faithful, Bible Study Book
By Kelly Minter / Lifeway
Trace the path of Joseph’s life in the Book of Genesis to observe how God’s sovereignty reigns, even in our darkest moments. Learn to recognize when God is working during periods of waiting, trust God’s plan when life doesn’t make sense, and rest in the sufficiency of His presence in every circumstance. His provision is enough, His presence is constant, and His purpose is unstoppable. (8 sessions)
|Better: A Study of Hebrews, Bible Study Book
By Jen Wilkin / Lifeway
|Ever Faithful: 365-Day Devotional
By David Jeremiah / Thomas Nelson
Embrace a stronger understanding of God’s nature—and transform your faith into a living, breathing relationship with him! Jeremiah’s daily devotions feature Scripture; a brief meditation on topics including trusting in God’s faithfulness, the Lord’s plans for his children, and how to live in his peace; and insightful questions for reflection. Includes a ribbon marker. 400 pages, hardcover from Nelson.
|Follower: Becoming More than Just a Fan of Jesus
By Kyle Idleman / Zondervan
Jesus calls us to chase after him—not cheer for his cause! Idleman invites you to take an honest look at your relationship with the Lord. He believes Christian faith isn’t about walking a comfortable and reassuring path, but stepping into a new identity as a follower of Christ. Based on his bestseller Not a Fan. 160 pages, hardcover from Zondervan.
|Don’t Give Up: Faith That Gives You the Confidence to Keep Believing and the Courage to Keep Going
By Kyle Idleman / Baker Books
There are times in life when the giants seem too big and the game gets too intense. We want to throw in the towel, preserve ourselves, and hide. But we are called to more!
In Don’t Give Up, Kyle Idleman explores the seasons of life where we feel as if we are hanging by a thread. Through relatable stories and Biblical encouragement, he encourages us to cast our concerns on God, trust in his love and timing, pray for patience and strength, and seek out support in the family of God.
|Come With Me: Discovering the Beauty of Following Where He Leads
By Suzanne Eller / Bethany House
It’s the ultimate invitation! Christ is calling you to a lifetime of unpredictable adventure. Now you must decide whether to accept. As you study the stories of Jesus’ disciples, you’ll be challenged to step back from your day-to-day worries and “to do” list; and move toward the One who promises to delight and surprise his people.
|Only Jesus: What It Really Means to Be Saved
By John MacArthur / Thomas Nelson
What does Jesus mean by “Follow me”? Your answer is crucial to your understanding of the Christian gospel! MacArthur explores what the Bible says about who this Galilean is, defines saving grace, clarifies why Christ must be savior and lord of your life, and more. An update and abridgment of The Gospel According to Jesus. 173 pages, 4.5″ x 7.25″ hardcover from Zondervan.
|Moving Mountains: Praying with Passion, Confidence, and Authority
By John Eldredge / Thomas Nelson
Is there a right way to pray? Why doesn’t God always say yes? Is he listening? Countering the idea that prayer’s purpose is to seek divine intervention, Eldredge shows that it’s actually about partnering with God. Discover your role in breaking sin’s strongholds, bringing about healing, and more as you claim your authority as God’s child! 256 pages, softcover from Nelson.
|Walking With God: Talk to Him. Hear from Him. Really.
By John Eldredge / Thomas Nelson
Walking with God moves through a year in the life of John Eldredge, showing and teaching what an intimate relationship with God looks like day-to-day. Among other important points, it will teach you how to make decisions aligning with God’s will, understand barriers and “agreements” keeping you from the life God intends, and how to fight spiritual battles for yourself and others. Learn how walking with God intimately can be a normal part of the Christian life.
By Kay Arthur / Harvest House Publishers
* Discover the truth of God’s Word for yourself! The Book of Romans is Paul’s clearest presentation of the gospel—and includes answers to some of life’s most important questions. How can I have peace with God? How can I know God’s will? Does being religious make me a Christian? For personal or group study. 144 pages, softcover from Harvest.
|Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire
By Jim Cymbala with Dean Merrill / Zondervan
Every Tuesday night the Brooklyn Tabernacle is standing room only—for a prayer meeting! In this expanded edition, Pastor Cymbala shares updated stories of what God continues to do there. You’ll be led on your own journey to spiritual awakening; and be inspired to listen more closely for his voice and pray with utter dependence on him. 224 pages, softcover from Zondervan.
By Julia M. Bruce / WestBow Press
There’s no doubt that marriage is hard work. Yet it can also be one of the most fulfilling relationships you can experience, outside of your relationship with God. However, many marriages leave God outside of the relationship. Godly marriages do not happen without cultivating it, investing in it, and putting God first in your individual lives and in your marriage.
This book includes 365 daily activities and takes you on a journey through Biblical principles about Godly marriage that you can then apply to your marriage, as well as helping you talk through concepts that can help you develop a solid relationship. Inside you will find simple, quick activities that include:
• Scripture to memorize and meditate on
• Conversation Starters
• Concepts from the Bible on Godly marriages
• Romance Builders
• Relationship Builders
• Personal reflections
• Date ideas
• Group date ideas for you and other Christian couples