Monday, September 30, 2013

Bye, September!

My favorite month coming up!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

I Am Love

I shared this poem on Facebook and love it so much I want to have it here too. This is about the essence of love and I like that much of it is about the love within the family.

Some say I can fly on the wind, yet I haven't any wings.  
Some have found me floating on the open sea, yet I cannot swim. 
Some have felt my warmth on cold nights, yet I have no flame.  
And though you cannot see me, I lay between two lovers at the hearth of fireplaces.  
I am the twinkle in your child's eyes.  
I am hidden in the lines of your mother's face.  
I am your father's shield as he guards your home.  
And yet, some say I am stronger than steel, yet I am as fragile as a tear. Some have never searched for me, yet I am around them always. 
Some say I die with loss, yet I am endless. 
And though you cannot hear me, I dance on the laughter of children.  
I am woven into the whispers of passion.  
I am in the blessings of Grandmothers.  
I embrace the cries of newborn babies.  
And yet, some say I am a flower, yet I am also the seed.  
Some have little faith in me, yet I will always believe in them.  
Some say I cannot cure the ill, yet I nourish the soul.  
And though you cannot touch me, I am the gentle hand of the kind.  
I am the fingertips that caress your cheek at night.  
I am the hug of a child.  
I am love....  
Author Unknown

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Mother, All This is Lovely

"What associations with all that is lovely are connected with that blissful word 'mother!' To that sound the tenderest emotions of the human heart, whether in the bosom of the savage or the sage, wake up. The beauty of that term is seen and its power felt alike by the prince and the peasant, the rustic and the philosopher. It is one of the words which infant lips are first taught to lisp, and the charm of which the infant heart first feels. It is a note to the music of which it is difficult to say whose soul most responsively vibrates, that of the parent or the child. Humanity, however semi-brutalized by oppression, ignorance, or even vice, has rarely been sunk so low as to have the last spark of maternal love extinguished or the last sensibility of this kind crushed out of it..." ~ John Angell James
(Artist: Leon Perrault)

Greatest Need of Families

Actually, this is the greatest  need of today. The future of this society depends on it. We need a godly, moral, and strong generation to confront the difficult issues present and future. And yes, it starts with the parents. Mrs. Elliot made this statement some years ago and as true as it was then, it's even more so now. May God have mercy on us if we don't train our children in His ways and walk in those ways ourselves. I suppose we need to be praying for each other.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The Mulberry Bush

This is so cute. But the best thing about it is what it says about Sunday. You can be sure this little song was from long ago! Enjoy.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Importance of Example

XIV. Train them remembering continually the influence of your own example.

"Fathers and mothers, do not forget that children learn more by the eye than they do by the ear. No school will make such deep marks on character as home. The best of schoolmasters will not imprint on their minds as much as they will pick up at your fireside. Imitation is a far stronger principle with children than memory. What they see has a much stronger effect on their minds than what they are told.

"Take care, then what you do before a child. It is a true proverb. "Who sins before a child, sins double.: Strive rather to be a living epistle of Christ, such as your families can read, and that plainly too. . . Think not your children will practice what they do not see you do. You are their model picture, and they will copy what you are. Your reasoning and your lecturing, your wise command and your good advice; all this they may not understand, but they can understand your life. . .

"Even so, the parent who tries to train without setting a good example is building with one hand, and pulling down with the other."

~ From the Duties of Parents, J. C. Ryle, See the first post in this series.

[This is so good. So much truth. And we all know it! Mr. Ryle says it so well; this is only a small taste of it.]

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Perpetua: A Christian Heroine

I just read about some Voice of the Martyrs representatives who went to an Arabic church here in the US, where the members are from Egypt, Jordan, and Iraq. I would imagine the people from that church would know something of what persecution is. These representatives showed the children from the church a DVD made by VOM. This DVD is the story of Perpetua. Do your children know about her?  If you look her up, you'll find she was a young woman in her early twenties who became a Christian when it was illegal to do so. She was married and had an infant son but could not bring herself to turn from her faith in Christ. She was brutally martyred for that.

After viewing this story of Perpetua in the above mentioned church, the kids were asked what they would do if they woke up one day and found it was illegal to be a Christian. Some of their responses are recorded at the Kids of Courage blog and they're very interesting. You might want to read them here

I wonder what many of our children would say after reading the life of this one Christian heroine and that of many others. I wonder how it would impact their lives to learn more about the courageous Christians who gave their lives in service, and some who gave their lives literally.

I hope and pray some of us will take this to heart in our homes. And may our great God bless your children for it.

Maxine, a/k/a Nanna

Friday, September 13, 2013

Jigsaw Puzzles

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28

Isn’t that ever an important truth to teach our children? So many things in life, when taken alone, will never give us real insight into what God’s big plan is for us. His ways are right and good, though very often we're not able to see that rightness and goodness at a particular time. Some of those “things” are difficult and painful. Some bring joy and gladness. But if we are to trust this beloved passage of Scripture and embrace it, we have to believe it in the dark times as well as when the sun is shining.

Sometimes children go through darkness; life isn’t always bright and carefree for youngsters. There are times when sickness comes, either in their own bodies, or in that of someone dear to them. If you think hard enough, you'll even think of some children you know who are right now going through tough times.  Actually, there are often valleys which children have to go through, more than we may think, if it hasn’t touched our own kids’ lives yet.

I have a suggestion: use jigsaw puzzles as a means to teach this truth. How about finding one where the completed picture is one which will be pleasing to them, a picture of something they enjoy or like. Work on the puzzle together, pointing out that some of the pieces have colors which are not very attractive when taken alone. But then you can tell them how those particularly “unattractive” or darkly colored pieces are each a necessary part of the total. In fact, the finished work would be lacking without them.

My oldest granddaughters both like doing jigsaw puzzles and I LOVE doing them with them.The older one has done a few really complex ones all by herself. Both girls are delighted when they get one all finished and so are the rest of us.  I sure do hope they continue to enjoy doing these puzzles and that their parents will take every opportunity to help this activity teach them Romans 8:28. Hopefully, I can have some input too. Perhaps this will be an incentive for you to make use of this important tool for teaching many spiritual truths.

Maxine, a/k/a Nanna 

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Never Forget Free Pages

These notebooking pages are free today. Go here for more information.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Important in the Life of a Child

“A hundred years from now it will not matter what my bank account was, the sort of house I lived in, or the kind of car I drove…but the world may be different because I was important in the life of a child.” ~ Forest E. Witcraft

I stumbled upon this quote one day, knowing little of this man other than that he was a scholar, teacher, and scout leader. But what wisdom are in these words. They are particularly relevant to parents and teachers, but they should be remembered by all of us. Even after we’ve raised our own children and retired from our occupations, we can still make a difference in the life of a child. From our homes, if we can scrape up a few dollars a month to sponsor one in another country, or even talk a bit to the neighborhood children, who knows what good we can do for the future of not just our own country, but the world? After all, that future is in the hands of today’s children.

And you know that the most good you can do is to help point them to Jesus, who is the only hope for the future everywhere. We can point our children and grandchildren to Him; we can point our students to Him; we can speak of Him to the children out on the streets after we befriend them; and we can support Christian organizations that are serving Him by ministering to the needy little ones.

I need to be more diligent in being “important in the life of a child” in the ways that matter most. Do you?


Maxine, a/k/a Nanna

Thursday, September 5, 2013

The Roots of a Family Tree

"The roots of a family tree begin with the love of two hearts." (source not known)

I just posted this photo and quote at the HCG Facebook page because after seeing this quote, it reiterated for me how important this truth is. As we think about the spiritual and moral growth of children, I daresay we can feel fairly confident that this best happens in the confines of a loving and caring marriage of the dad and mom. And the hope of a child having a good family tree, a subject we touched on not long ago, starts with good marriage. Now that's a precious truth indeed.

Praying all dads and moms will nurture their married relationship first and give it their top priority. It was ordained by God you know.

Maxine, a/k/a Nanna

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Follow God's Plan of Training

XIII. Train them remembering continually how God trains His children.

"Now God the Father is ever training the members of this family for their everlasting abode with Him in heaven. . .Reader, if you would train your children wisely, mark well how God the Father trains His. He doeth all things well; the plan which He adopts must be right.

"See, then, how many things there are which God withholds from His children. Few could be found, I suspect, among them who have not had desires which He has never been pleased to fulfill. . .

"See, too, how often God leads His people by ways which seem dark and mysterious to our eyes. . .

"See, also, how often God chastens His people with trial and affliction. He sends them crosses and disappointments. . .

"I ask you to lay to heart the lesson which God's dealings with His people is meant to teach you. Fear not to withhold from your child anything you think will do him harm, whatever his own wishes may be. This is God's plan.

"Hesitate not to lay on him commands, of which he may not at present see the wisdom, and to guide him in ways which may not now seem reasonable to his mind. This is God's plan.

"Shrink not from chastising and correcting him whenever you see his soul's health requires it, however painful it may be to your feelings; and remember medicines for the mind must not be rejected because they are bitter. This is God's plan.

"And be not afraid, above all, that such a plan of training will make your child unhappy. I warn you against this delusion. Depend on it, there is no surer road to unhappiness than always having your own way. . . To be indulged perpetually is the way to become selfish; and selfish people and spoiled children, believe me, are seldom happy."

~ From The Duties of Parents, J. C. Ryle (See our first post in this series)

[If we believe God loves His children, isn't He the best example for us? In this section there's a lot of food for thought along the same lines which of late have been brought out in quotes at the Facebook page.  This theme of not giving children all their wants and desires is almost as important as the one of not withholding correction. You'll be further impacted when you read the portions I left out. ~ mr]


Monday, September 2, 2013

Happy Labor Day

Hope you have a great Labor Day! Thankful for all the hard workers who helped make our country prosperous.