035 Labels are Useful… and Stupid

LABELS ARE USEFUL…AND STUPID

In this week’s episode we discuss the use of labels in Christian culture, how labels can be dangerous and what the Bible says about says about labels.

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034 Christmas in July!!

CHRISTMAS IN JULY!!

We are back from summer break and diving right into….Christmas? Yep you read that right. The best way to have a peaceful holiday is to be prepared for it. Join Sandy and Elisabeth as they discuss their current holiday prep and share some tips and tricks to make your holiday season a little more magical this year.

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033 Changes, Self-Care and Summer Break

CHANGES, SELF-CARE AND SUMMER BREAK

This week we talk about what’s been going on in our lives, why we’ve been a little quiet the past couple weeks and our upcoming summer break.

As the craziness of summer break sets in make sure you carve out some time for Jesus and some time for yourself every day. Happy Summer!

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Even though you won’t get a new episode for a few weeks we will be hard at work behind the scenes getting content ready so if you have a topic you want to hear about now is the time to let us know:

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032 Divorce Perspective: What It Looks Like and How You Can Help Someone During Their Walk

DIVORCE PERSPECTIVE: WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE TO WALK THROUGH IT AND HOW YOU CAN HELP SOMEONE DURING THEIR WALK

This week we discuss divorce, including what it was like to go through it and how you can help those around you while they are going through it.

031 Homeschooling Part 2: It’s Not Just For Cults and Weirdos

HOMESCHOOLING PART 2: IT’S NOT JUST FOR CULTS AND WEIRDOS

This week Sandy and Elisabeth continue their discussion on homeschooling including their reasons for homeschooling and the differences between Christian and secular curriculum.

1 CORINTHIANS [15:33] Do not be deceived: “Bad company corrupts good morals.”

We can’t control our kids or their environment forever but we can give them a good start, a firm foundation, a strong faith and a support system to handle the things they cannot control.

PROVERBS 22:6 Train up a child in the way they should go, even when he is old he will not depart from it.

HOMESCHOOLING BENEFITS:

  • Strengthen Faith
  • Character Development
  • Creating a Personalized Path to Learning Success
  • Stronger Family Bonds
  • Establishing Active Lifestyle and Healthy Attitudes Towards Food
  • Encourage Creativity
  • Creative and Critical Thinking
  • Safety
  • Socialization and Dealing with Social Anxiety
  • Dealing with Special Needs
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • More Outdoor/Nature Time

CHRISTIAN HOMESCHOOLING PITFALLS:

  • Biased Curriculum
  • Inaccurate History
  • Lessons Focused on Scripture Instead of Education

CONCLUSION:

There is nothing inherently evil about homeschooling but there is also nothing inherently evil about traditional schooling. Either way, it is our job as parents to train them up, both in their education and in their faith and school choice is only a small part of that choice.

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030 Homeschooling Part 1: Our Personal Experiences and Why We’re Doing it for Now

HOMESCHOOLING PART 1: OUR PERSONAL EXPERIENCES AND WHY WE’RE DOING IT FOR NOW

This week Sandy and Elisabeth discuss their unique and very different experiences being homeschooled themselves and why they are choosing homeschooling to start their own kids educations.

TOPICS COVERED:

  • Education abuse by parents and churches. (Using homeschooling to keep children ignorant of certain information such as geology, scientific theories, and history)

  • A comparison of homeschooling, private schooling and public schooling.

  • The flexibility of homeschooling.

  • Our lifelong dream of traveling the country while schooling.

FUN LINKS ABOUT EDUCATION IN THE US:

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Jesus Freak

Listening to Jesus Freak. It’s bringing back the feels.

If you grow up in church, you often grow up thinking that “Jesus Freak” means missions trips and youth conferences and “Official” ministries, titles, numbers of converts and endless Sundays of never resting. A checklist of do’s and don’ts. Checklist Christianity even with the highest of intentions.

As I get older, how it plays out in real life, as an adult who’s lucky enough to live in the US, is less checklist and more day to day choice of attitude and small to large self-sacrifices. It’s loving the people around you and telling them “Hey, the creator of the universe loves you more than you can fathom”, and then treating them as if they are loved and have value in the eyes of our creator. Yes, sometimes being a “Jesus Freak” means not chewing out the person who fully deserves it, but responding in gentleness. It means taking the time you don’t have to be there for someone, regardless of if they’re a “Christian” or not. It means less Starbucks for you and more coffee for the homeless dude on the corner. It means seeing people in the context of their value to Christ, not their value to you. It means loving God, and loving your neighbor as yourself, no caveats.

It’s seeing Jesus more and more as you mature and realizing more and more how much you need Him, and just how perfect He was while He was here, and reminding yourself He’s still alive, just not here. It’s remembering that every person you encounter is created in the image of a Holy God, and Jesus is proof that God longs for each and every one of them to be reconciled to Him no matter what sins they’ve committed.

It’s realizing that Jesus was a REAL PERSON, who REALLY sees us and loves us, not some vague humorless figure from ancient tests whose name we use to prop up our political and societal agendas (thanks to Radio Free Babylon for the much needed modern context!).

It’s the pull to be more like Jesus – who loved perfectly – than to be more like our own reasoning of what a “good person” is, which for me personally calls for more gentleness and patience than I possess within myself.

If you are not an American or in a country that practices religious freedom, being a Jesus Freak, particularly in the last year or so, sometimes looks like being arrested, separated from your family, mutilated and raped, possibly blown up with your children for worshiping the Risen Savior on Easter Sunday.

Whatever being a “Jesus Freak” looks like for you today, I want to remind you, to encourage you, that He is worthy. Whatever your cost, He has paid the ultimate price, not just for you, but for the super annoying person next to you. Following Christ isn’t merely a checklist of things, but a heart and mind that are oriented around honoring God and being more like Christ.

-E

029 Modesty of Wealth (#Preachersneakers)

MODESTY OF WEALTH (#Preachersnsneakers)

This week Sandy and Elisabeth talk a little more about the subject of modesty. Discussion includes the extremely popular Instagram account @preachersnsneakers, why that should matter to the modern church and what Paul’s message on modesty really was for the early church.

Our discussion of Paul’s message to the early church is pulled from 1 Timothy chapters 1 & 2. Yes the entire chapters. We won’t be adding any specific quotes in these notes because taking brief statements from Paul’s letters have led to massively out of context dress standards and unBiblical ideas on modesty, clothing and wealth. Instead we go into an in depth explanation of the purpose, context and instruction that Paul gives us. Spoiler alert: It’s NOT a checklist!!

There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. Galatians [3:28]

CONCLUSION

Does God really care if your pastor wears $3,000 sneakers? Yes, yes He does.

I beg you to shepherd God’s flock for whom you are responsible. Watch over them because you want to not because you are forced. This is how God wants it. Do it because you are eager to serve, not because you want money. 1 Peter 5:2

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Freedom

“The Lord God has put His Spirit in me because the Lord has appointed me to bring the good news to the poor. He has sent me to comfort those whose hearts are broken, to tell the captives they are free, and to tell the prisoners they are released.”

Isaiah 61:1

We first see these words in Isaiah, but that’s not the last time we see them. When Jesus is starting His life in the ministry He goes to the synagogues to teach, and in Luke Chapter 4 we have the first written account of what Jesus is teaching. What is it? Isaiah 61

This powerful message is often overlooked because He’s just reading Scripture in the synagogue. But actually, He is announcing to the world that He is here to fulfill the prophecy. Jesus is announcing His purpose. He has come to set us free.

He is freedom from pain. Freedom from grief. Freedom from oppression. Freedom from illness. Freedom from death itself.

Recently, God has been showing me that He is also freedom from guilt. For so many of us Mother’s Day is a painful time. Losing a child, losing a pregnancy, and infertility come with overwhelming guilt. And even though I no longer avoid church on Mother’s Day, it still brings mixed emotions for me.

Survive. It’s the most basic instinct for all of us, but for moms, we would trade our survival in the blink of an eye to make sure our children would. A mother’s most important job is to keep her children safe from harm.

So when you lose a child, a pregnancy, or when you are unable to conceive, you feel responsible. Even when we know without a shadow of a doubt that there is nothing that we did wrong and there was nothing that we could’ve done to prevent it, you still feel at fault.

This will be my 10th Mother’s Day, yet my oldest child is only five. It’s a very weird holiday for me, and millions of other women, who feel like they have failed as a mother. I am so blessed with two amazingly beautiful children. I am grateful for the opportunity to raise them, guide them, and love them. But, I am still mourning my children that aren’t here, and I still feel guilty.

But in Jesus I don’t have to live in that guilt. I have freedom.

It’s not easy to let go. The guilt is oddly comforting. It is easier to feel guilty than it is to trust. It is easier to be ashamed than to be bold. It is easier to sit in chains than it is to break free. But Jesus didn’t come so that we could stay in darkness. He came to set us free. And those He sets free are truly free.

So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

John [8:36]

So if you are like me, and you are struggling with motherhood guilt this week, let’s pray together that God would lift us out of the darkness and into His light. That we would be free from the grip of guilt just as we are free from death. And that we would be able to forgive ourselves just as Christ has forgiven us.

-S

028 For Those Hurting on Mothers Day

For Those Hurting on Mothers Day

A special message for those who grieve on Mother’s Day.

If you are mourning you are not wrong.

ECCLESIASTES 3:1-4 There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under Heaven: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot. A time to kill and a time to heal; a time to break down and a time to build up; A time to weep and a time to laugh; a time to mourn and a time to dance.

If you have lost a child they are in the arms of an angel.

MATTHEW [18:10]-11 See that you don’t think these little children are worth nothing. For I tell you that they have angels in Heaven who are always in the presence of my Father in Heaven. The Son of Man came to save that which was lost.

If you don’t have any experience with this type of loss be joyful because you have hope, be patient when trouble comes and pray at all times.

ROMANS [12:10]-13; 15 Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality… Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.

If you aren’t sure how to respond, the answer is always love. Not just in word but in action. Remember the broken hearted. Don’t let the fear of saying the wrong thing keep you from saying anything. Your silence speaks so much louder.

1 JOHN [3:18]- My children we should love people not only with words and talk but by our actions and true caring. This is the way we know that we belong to the way of truth. This is what God commands: that we believe in His son, Jesus Christ, and that we love each other, just as He commanded. The people who keep God’s commands abide in God, and God abides in them. We know that God lives in us because of the Spirit God gave us.

CONCLUSION:

If you are mourning this Sunday, you are not alone. You are seen. You are loved. You are important. And you are covered by our prayers.

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