Preparation Day Thoughts, Sharing My Heart

Birth Pains…

A lot is going on right now in the news. A lot of fear is going around. A lot of worries are on the minds of many people. Since I am home much of the time, I was curious if what I was hearing was actually happening or if the media was making a big deal about nothing. It didn’t take long to find out for on Wednesday, I made my weekly shopping trip to town and found that there indeed was no toilet paper to be found.

There is much that could be debated. One could fight out the reasons why the coronavirus isn’t something to worry about any more than the common flu. One could argue why toilet paper isn’t going to save a person during a quarantine. One could reason out why limits should be instated. But this isn’t the issue.

The issue is that we are right now witnessing a “BIRTH PAIN”. In Matthew 24, we read that Jesus was preparing us to meet the times that are going on today. Are you prepared? Or did this new coronavirus hit like a thud? Was it a shock? Were you prepared for the way people reacted? Were you prepared for the fear or worry you have in your own mind? Do you walk around looking at people with sniffles like they are the enemy? What was your reaction to this birth pain?

Matthew 24:7 (KJV) clearly tells us this, “For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.”

What I want you to focus on is the word “pestilences”. I looked it up to be sure because I don’t want to just throw out my opinion and lead someone astray. The definition of pestilence by Merriam-Webster: 1) a contagious or infectious epidemic disease that is virulent and devastating 2) something that is destructive or pernicious.

Now, isn’t that interesting? This isn’t the first pestilence we have dealt with in my lifetime and it likely will not be the last. However, this again is no reason to fear. Jesus did not want us to fear and that is why He gave us a heads up. He didn’t leave us without a warning to prepare for the things that will happen during the end times or these early birth pains. And like birth pains, they will come closer and closer together. It appears that is what is happening with pestilences.

So what does this big alarm with the coronavirus really mean for us as Christians? Does it wake you up and make you think? Does it scare you? Does it make you mad because life isn’t “normal” anymore?

For me, it clarifies in my mind our place in history. It clarifies that time is running short. It clarifies to me that there is more to be concerned about than simply our time on this earth. I find myself asking…How is my relationship with Jesus? How is yours?

More importantly, as these pains become closer, are you ready to meet your Saviour? Are your children ready to meet your Saviour? Is your family ready? Your friends? Your neighbors? It sure makes life look different, right?

I find myself wondering if I am prepared for the times to come? While I trust that God will keep us and deliver us, I do wonder if perhaps these birth pains are more to wake us up. More to nudge us on for the duty we have as Christians. Maybe to help us see that we aren’t as ready as we thought we were. Do we know our Bibles? Do we live what we believe (or say we believe) in our homes with our children? Do we share the truth and love that we know and have in our hearts with those around us and those we meet?

My prayer for you as this week closes, is that we draw close to God. I thank Jesus for the message He shared with us so we can be prepared for these times we live in. Let us not live in fear, but rather in boldness and courage. Let us live out the faith we proclaim to have. Let us teach it to our children and be willing to share it with those around us. May our hearts be renewed and have that relationship with Jesus that can last through troubling times…and on through eternity.

“Have I not commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.” Joshua 1:9

May your Sabbath be blessed!

character, Online Resources

New Resource: The Lion and His Men

I was excited to come across this new You-Tube channel.  I think you will be, as well!

The Lion and His Men is a new ministry by Sean Nebblett that is beginning this year. I am excited because it is for men.  I, also, believe this would be equally beneficial for older male teens, possibly 14-15yo and older, that are trying to figure out who they want to be.  (Parents, please review to see if it will be a good fit for your child at his age/maturity.)  They will get some awesome guidance in some very specific character traits that can “shine” in men.

So, please check it out.  You can click the logo image above to find the channel, and check out the embedded video below.

Thanks, Sean!  We want to encourage you with this new ministry!  May God guide and direct you with each new episode you produce!

 

character, Motivation Monday

Motivation Monday

This past week was a busy one for me. I got a call, early morning on the first, that my oldest daughter was in labor and I needed to head up quickly to watch my grandkids. They took the kids to friends of theirs a couple blocks away as I made my way up. I got a text just before getting to my grandsons that she had already delivered the baby, just minutes after arriving at the hospital.

I picked up the boys and headed to their house. We made breakfast, washed dishes together, got dressed, played and read books until Mom and Dad returned home later in the afternoon. I really enjoyed my time with my grandsons. Their smiles. Them taking my hand and showing me new things that I hadn’t seen before. Them snuggling close as we read stories together. Their squeals of laughter as we made silly movements to a silly song. My heart was softened and refreshed by spending time with them.

As a new parent, I remember thinking that I now had little ones that I needed to mold and nurture. While this is true, part of parenting the child molds and grows us as adults. As I recalled my own children being born, I can look back and see how each child challenged my own character. Each one taught me something new about myself. Each one created an awareness that I still had work to do in my own character.

Moms and Dads, we live in a very busy world today. I want to challenge you to take time to be with your children, not on your phones, not on the computers, but really invest one on one time with your children. It will not only draw them close to their Lord Jesus as you train them up, but it will soften and strengthen your own character. May this quote encourage you today.

jessica-rockowitz-5NLCaz2wJXE-unsplash

Noble Traits are Developed in Caring for Children. – I have a very tender interest in all children, for I became a sufferer at a very early age. I have taken many children to care for, and I have always felt that association with the simplicity of childhood was a great blessing to me….

The sympathy, forbearance, and love required in dealing with children would be a blessing in any household. They would soften and subdue set traits of character in those who need to be more cheerful and restful. The presence of a child in a home sweetens and refines. A child brought up in the fear of the Lord is a blessing.

Care and affection for dependent children removes the roughness from our natures, makes us tender and sympathetic, and has an influence to develop the nobler elements of our character.
The Adventist Home, p. 160b

Sharing My Heart

Sharing My ❤: New Starts…

It’s January; the beginning of the new year. A time many think about making a new start. A time of year that tends to draw us to look at new goals. A time of the year that slows down for reflection. A new year for new goals and a chance to do better than last year.

I am not one to normally use January 1st as a time for restarting things in my life. However, having just served on the Nominating Committee, I have had time to look forward and to also review the past year. Not only at church, but with myself as well. Where am I headed; where does God want me to put my focus?

I have felt that I perhaps have failed in many parts of my life. It causes me much grief to look back to see how I may have hurt others, to see how I may have moved forward before God was calling me, to see how I made so many selfish choices. I have let those things stall me. I have let Satan throw them into my thoughts time and time again, only to shrink back from moving where I feel God is calling me to go. I have let Satan distract me with things that wasted my time. I have let others steer me into much busywork (I hate to say no) instead of following the things that I feel God has placed on my heart to do or to share.

I know that I cannot let Satan win at this battle. I need to trust that God is leading and step forward. I need to shout at Satan, “Get back! Jesus died for me. He died to save me from my sins. He died that I might be forgiven… and given a new start.” Maybe you, too, feel that calling, yet are unsure about stepping forward. Maybe it’s time?

You will see some changes around The Adventist Home Educator. They may come on slowly, as I learn how to incorporate these new ideas within our home schedule and gain the skills to make some of the ideas become realities. I pray that you are patient with the upcoming changes, with the challenges I will face and with the mistakes I am sure to make. However, I pray that you will be blessed by the sharing to come.

So, I guess for me, this is a new start. A new start to put on my Christian Armor (Ephesians 6) and humbly, yet boldly step forward. I would love your encouragement and your prayers for me personally and for the ministry of The Adventist Home Educator.

Be sure to check out our Instagram account, our Pinterest account, sign up to follow our blog and our newsletter so you can be sure to see the new things coming your way. Feel free to share this with your homeschooling friends and family. Also young families may be encouraged with thoughts shared here. We are thankful for those that help us share and encourage Adventist families.

Warmly, ~Melissa, The Adventist Home Educator

Motivation Monday

Motivation Monday

If you are one that is taking time to reflect on this past year and move in new ways this coming year, we share these verses and pray that it will guide you as you make plans for change or refinement in your path forward with the Lord.

“Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.* Then will I teach transgressors they ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.”

Psalms 51:10-13 KJV

*The SDA Bible Commentary says that “uphold me with thy free spirit” means: with a willing mind, ready to obey God and to serve Him.

Praying for you all this week!