Give Them Grace ~ Chapters 5-6 {Book Discussion}

Okay, I am a bit behind in this 3 month discussion of  Give Them Grace: Dazzling Your Kids with the Love of Jesus by Elyse M. Fitzpatrick and Jessica Thompson in the Family Discipleship Facebook group. If you missed the discussion of the foreword, intro, and chapter one, you can find that here, and chapters two through four here. I’d love to hear your thoughts—here and on Facebook. Below is the schedule we’re following in the group.

We'll be discussing Give Them Grace May-July 2015. Here's the schedule!

In Chapter Five discipleship is broken down for us into five separate categories: Management, Nurturing, Correction, Training and Promises. I love charts myself; I need those visual reminders (I admit it) if I am going to stick with something! So the fact that they have charts in this book which direct us to the scriptures relating to a given incident s well as examples and references for each area of discipleship – Its so very helpful to me!  And there are questions too in case at times you struggle with which category of discipleship, exactly, you are dealing with in your circumstance.



Honestly, this is all so new to me, and yet so exciting for me! But I feel such a strong desire to follow this more and more in my home.  And the timing, some things really are of God, this I do believe is one of them. When I seek after, and ask Him to guide me, in a better way, for my children, He provides. All that I have read thus far, it reminds me of His love and training with each and every one of us.


One of my absolute favorite quotes thus far is:


Paul’s command to “bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord” means this: that parents are to think about and remember Jesus Christ and then train their children to understand how everything in their life—their joys and sorrows, their trials and labors, their doubts, sin and shame—is to be understood in the light of Jesus Christ, who descended from David rather than from Levi, died, and rose from the dead. That is the best news any child could hear. Distinctly Christian parenting must be accomplished in the environment of the good news about Jesus Christ or it is not Christian parenting. It may work for a while, it may make your life manageable, and God may use it, but it is not “of the Lord.” (Give Them Grace, page 93-94)


Our children need to know and understand the Gospel for themselves. We need to bring them up in the fear and admonition of the Lord. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of their journey, their experience, with the one true living God!


It reminds me of something I heard this morning that said: Worship involves all of our life… 

Worship is more than just a moment. Its more than this thing we do for a couple minutes before service or a few words uttered about how great and mighty God is. We worship Him in all that we do and say, every moment of our day.  We worship Him when, in difficult times, we seek Him and love Him.  We worship Him when someone wrongs us and we pray for them and love them anyway. We worship Him when we show our children the grace and mercy and love He pours out on us every day. Because we too are sinners. We too need to endure to the end to be saved.

This chapter is such a powerful reminder that love covers all sins. And that without love, we are nothing but noise….

Chapter Six is another very meaty and rich chapter. There were tough questions asked of us, such as: “Is this sin or weakness and immaturity?”  We need to realize how simple our teaching can really be.  It is broken down into four steps:

1) Teach your kids to respect authority

2) Teach them the gospel

3) Trust God to work in your children

4) Confess your own sins

These are very valuable, powerful methods. So simple I am a bit embarrassed I did not see these things before now. But I thank Jesus for this book which helps me to see these things today. Because today is a blessing ~ As is His wisdom and grace. ❤

“We are not telling you to ignore bad behavior; nor are we saying that sinful behavior should not be corrected. We are saying that we should teach our children that sinful behavior does not alter their relationship with us. If our parenting is modeled on the gospel, then their sin, hardness, and unbelief will grieve us, we will seek to discipline and correct it, we will pray for them about it, and we will continue to love and welcome them in spite of it. But we will not demand a show of repentance before we welcome them back into relationship.” (Give Them Grace, page 105)



Ouch! I don’t know about you but I admit I am guilty of focusing on rules more often than not. With a new baby and a to-do list a mile long…I tend to forget that there are more important things than having a perfectly tended yard or garden. I look past the sad or hurting child to what we have to do right now. *sigh*  This was such a revealing chapter for me. SO much truth that I needed to read. And as I read I was reminded again and again of how important God says it is for us to have that right relationship. With Him, with our husband, with our children. It matters so much more than we know. Our children need to know that no matter what, we still love them. They need to hear, in their times of trials, that they are loved. When we are struggling, we need them to see us, show love and repentance too.


I really appreciated this chapter’s constant emphasis on the need for gospel-motivated instruction and how it differs from so many other approaches out there that we use. We need to bring about heart change. It does not matter what we do, or how we do it, if ultimately we do not have a “first love”.  Our children need that relationship, just as desperately as we do, that they may know Him and love Him.  It starts with love.


New Family Discipleship Facebook Community



Leave a comment with your thoughts or feel free to join discussion at Family Discipleship Community!  It’s not too late 🙂

Give Them Grace ~ Chapters 2-4

As you know I have been reading Give Them Grace: Dazzling Your Kids with the Love of Jesus by Elyse M. Fitzpatrick and Jessica Thompson in the Family Discipleship Facebook group. If you missed the discussion of the foreword, intro, and chapter one, you can find that here. I’d love to hear your thoughts if you are reading along. If you care to join us this is the schedule we’re following in the group. Although as you can see I am a bit behind. No pressure though; join in as you can and where you can~

We'll be discussing Give Them Grace May-July 2015. Here's the schedule!
In Chapter Two, these ladies talk about How to Raise Good Kids.. this was so very revealing, and difficult, for me.  Fitzpatrick and Thompson discuss here the difference between goodness and righteousness. And what a huge difference there is.  But how many times are we tempted to tell our kids they are “good” or that they need to be “good”? How often do we shower them with praise? Yet if we are honest with them and ourselves, apart from Christ, there is no good thing to be found in any one of us. Romans 3:9-13 (KJV) says:

 What then? are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin;

 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:

There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.

They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.

Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips:

And then in Mark 10:18 Jesus says:

” Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God.”


Jesus alone is good. Whatever we have, be it finances, home, family, peace, health or righteousness  – it comes from Christ alone. It is through Him alone that we have our salvation. If we praise our kids for being “good”, are we not then giving them a false sense of righteousness? —What can we do to encourage and inspire them to do well, without giving them the impression that it is them alone who can do “good”?

Every word we say to (our children) during the day will be shaped by our view of their ability to be good and how to get them there. Every responsible parent wants obedient children. But if we’re confused about their ability to be good, we’ll end up lying to them about their desperate lostness outside of Christ. We’ll tell them they are good and that they can obey God’s law. (Give Them Grace, page 47)

Certainly as I train up my children, I want them to see their need for a Savior.  I want them to know that we can not do any good thing without Him! The truth of the Gospel can be so powerful if we allow His Word to speak for itself. Let us not interpret it or water it down for our children. Let us trust that as He works in their lives they will gain an understanding and love of His Word.  The truth is what sets us free and it shall set them free as well if we trust in Him.

Are you Sure?

(10) Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.

“Conventional wisdom” is not really wisdom! It is what is generally held to be true by many, yet it may, in fact, be fictitious. Some may be able to convince themselves that they will be safe from what lies ahead because they are with the right church—rather than being right with God. This is extremely dangerous, as it indicates do you trust in the wrong thing?

The letters to the seven churches each are concluded with Jesus saying, “he who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches”—plural—meaning we should glean all that we can from each letter rather than focus on just one.

One cannot conclude that, just because he fellowships with a particular faithful group, he will be carried along in its positive momentum and benefit from the promises of protection and other blessings. An unfaithful individual in a faithful group will reap what he sows, not what the rest of the group sows.


Are you sure you’re on the right side? What evidence do you have that you know Jesus? How will Jesus respond to your laundry list of “Christian” activities?


Please understand…I ask for the same reason Jesus gives the warning. It is the most loving thing I can do!


“Many” will go to hell even though they thought they’d waltz into paradise. Jesus will say to them, “Depart from me, I never knew you (Matt 7:23). The most frightening thing is that word “many” …. Will you sound like the “many” calling out in desperation, “Lord, Lord, did I not….in your name?” (Erasing Hell, Francis Chan)


Be sure you are on the right side. We CAN know.


Matthew 10:22: “And you will be hated by all for My name’s sake. But he who endures to the end will be saved”.


He makes it clear, this is an individual thing – How is your relationship with Jesus?



Trusting Him Tomorrow

My husband doesn’t go to the doctor very often. Truth be told, neither of us do. We have been quite blessed in our health.

But shortly after we came home from the hospital with our latest little blessing he was telling me of a racing heart; he could feel it like it was going to jump out of his chest or explode or something.  A heart beating that fast – we all know (its common sense) that no good comes from that.  Only so long before it stops.


He went to the doctor two days ago and they reported that his heart rate was 170. His doctor is calling it supra ventricular tachycardia.  According to what I read this means that from time to time his heart beats very fast for a reason other than exercisehigh fever, or stress. It is said most episodes are caused by faulty electrical connections in the heart.  There was no mention of any type of treatment other than surgery.


He had to go in the day after that as well for an appointment with the cardiologist who determined that it is actually a narrow complex tachycardia he has.From what little I could find on this, it basically means that there is a rapid activation of the ventricles via the system itself, in turn suggesting the arrhythmia originates above or within the bundle (ie, similar to the a supraventricular tachycardia). The site of origin may be in the sinus node, the atria, the atrioventricular (AV) node, the His bundle, or some combination of these sites.  That’s quite a mouthful.


Anyway so they sent hi home with instructions to take aspirin daily; they scheduled an ECHO for later this month.  They advised him to go to the emergency room immediately when this happens again so that they can see this “in action” before determining any definite treatment (thus far surgery is the treatment from my understanding).


In all of this, we have a wonderful group of prayer warriors praying and believing in a good report!  Its a reminder though, tomorrow is not promised. Today is the day of salvation. Today.

Certainly we would love for God to give us a glimpse into His plan for us in all of this.  We would love for Him to tell us that He is going to heal his heart and all will be just fine again as of May 3rd at 2:44 pm.  But we all know thats not how this works.  And thats okay.


“Those who wait for the Lord gain new strength.” (Isaiah 40:31)


This is the time to surrender, completely, to His will.  This is the time to give it all to God.  To give him my husband’s heart and body and mind and soul because – he is God’s child.

This is the time to dig deeper into His word, the time to worship and praise more than before because while His plan is not always our own, it is good because He is good.


And we know that ALL things work together for good to those who are His.  Now is the time to show some faith:

Because”faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance of what we do not see.” (Hebrews 11:1)

And  trials can only make us stronger; they build up our perseverance,  perseverance builds our character, and character hope. (Romans 5:3-4)

There is no testimony without the test.

Let us fix our eyes on Him; remembering that He goes before us.  Where we are going, He is already there.


When we falter, when we feel like we are growing let us remember how far He’s brought us. His love never fails.

It may sound crazy but I look forward, a bit excitedly, to seeing what He will do in all of this.  What report will we have to share with the many we know who so need to know our great God.  How is He going to use us, use this, for His glory?


We all know He is into “the impossible”whether its miracles or healing, or grace, the impossible is His specialty. 


Interestingly my husband  mentioned that the clock on the doctor’s office wall stopped around the very same time he was told all of this information, on his very first visit.


Prayers are greatly appreciate; of course we are trusting God in all of this. ❤

52 Little Lessons

     I love musicals.  I remember the very first time I saw this on stage; I was in love.  From that point on I read and studied the story, the history surrounding it all – I learned how to play the music, I learned every word to every song.  It was such a beautiful and powerful experience for me.  To this day I still remember, almost word for word, the songs within this musical.  🙂


So when I came across this book – how could I possibly pass it up? This, Victor Hugo’s masterpiece, has never grown old. I do not believe that this story will ever lose its value. At its core it speaks of sin, love and redemption. It shows sacrificial living; it is in many ways an excellent example for us as to how we ought to live.


Author Bob Welch, states he did not seek out to analyze this story but rather he sought to answer a question. Not just any question; it did not have anything to do with France and the time period in which Les Miserables historically occurs, but rather a most simple question:“What can it say to me where I am right now?”


These real such simple lessons. Short reads to ponder for our own life. For example: Lesson 6: “Blessed are the Poor in Spirit”; Lesson 26: “The Past Can Be a Springboard to the Future” and Lesson 40: “Self-Pity Morphs Into Selfishness”  and one of my favorites,  Lesson 38:  Perspective Changes Everything.  These are just a small sample of the lessons within this book. Certainly we all have much to learn as we grow in Christ. 🙂

Typically lessons begins with a short quote from the original story and then continues discussing a specific event or scene, then moving on to “real life” examples as well as scriptural references  Each lesson concludes with a thought provoking question, something that helps to show its application to our own life. They really encourage you to stop and take inventory, and reflect before moving forward.


A good example of this is seen in the character of Valjean; his story and even the characters of those like the Bishop and Enjolras. Fantine and Cosette.  There’s so much life within the pages of this book all full of lessons and ways we can grow ourselves in our own lives.  I love the depth in the one simple line: “even the darkest night will end and the sun will rise.”  Doesn’t that take on a greater meaning when you really stop to consider it?


Such a sweet, simple, valuable read. I do believe this would be wonderful to use as a devotional even.  I plan in the near future to space this out, one lesson to ponder over several days. To really seek His word and way in those pages; there is a greater depth that I do not want to miss!  Certainly this one is overflowing with the most precious of lessons if we only take the time to really allow the words to sit, just as our tea bag steeps in the cup. I definitely will be reading this one again, as a steeping teabag, that I may gain a greater and stronger understanding from every word.


Going to Boot Camp!

If you know me you know how much I LOVE to camp. Not really. Actually I am terrible when it comes to the great outdoors. I love nature; spending time enjoying God’s creation. Relaxing in the shade maybe with a good book ~ I have three children, one more on the way. My oldest one a very rambunctious, loud, constantly, driving us all nuts kind of boy.  So needless to say when I heard of the Boys Bootcamp, and had the opportunity to attend this one, I was SO excited!

I want to do more than just survive my boys. And I don’t know where you are at in your journey, what struggles you my face, but I do know that I do not understand my boys. Especially my oldest (who is 9).  He cannot focus. He is too focused. He is here and there and everywhere. It’s the very first reason we chose to homeschool him so long ago. It’s a challenge teaching a boy like him; I know I am not alone but I admit to feeling very alone. A lot. I don’t want to seem ungrateful or have a spirit that is grumbling and complaining but how do you teach him when he just cannot hold still? When math is on the table and he cannot stop doodling or bouncing or racing back and forth in the house?

And just the other day someone smiles sweetly at me and says, “You just wait ’til they’re teenagers if you think it’s hard now.”  I admit my heart sunk just a bit. 

But  refuse to believe that it has to be this way forever. One day we WILL have fond memories of our time together. And maybe I will look back and laugh a bit over my oldest son, who runs relays through the store when we go out; who has to be loud and in your face, all the time, arguing (he calls it debating) and just being all around out of control.

I mean, with my younger two, I can easily do a trip to the store.  My daughter (3) and my son (5) walk the aisles with me, helping me find things, asking questions and just chatting up a storm. They love to sing worship songs as we are out too 🙂 It’s pleasant and wonderful time spent with these two little ones. But not with my oldest son. With him it is always an emotional roller coaster; I struggle to just try to keep him within social boundaries and by the end of the trip, I am a wreck and he is a mess. But there is a heart in there; one that is so full of joy and love but just doesn’t know how to get in sync.  How to control himself and all of these emotions and ideas bouncing about in his head, a bright young man who has lots of energy and little, to no, ability to manage himself.


Impulsive ~ No off switch on this one.

His impulses would take over.  I know he is a big hearted, good natured kid but how hard it is to remind myself of this when he is constantly pushing everyone’s buttons. And at what point does his inability to control himself become no longer a bi-product of his age? At what point does this not have to do with maturity?



I ask myself and my husband, “Does life have to be more difficult with him forever? Is sullen, moody, rebelliousness just a part of growing up? Do we just have to ride this out and survive these years?”


It simply cannot be. There is more for us, I just know there is a better way!


And so I am packing my bags (haha) and getting ready to head off to Boot Camp 9-12 to:


Get in Shape! Shape up your relationship with your son now before the real challenges hit.

Get Armed! Learn about serious dangers your son will face and develop the weapons to deal with them.

Get a Strategy! Learn how to put together a plan for high school and get it done.

Get Moving!  Start now to prepare your son to pass through the minefields to godly manhood.


Some of the topics that will be discussed are:

Brains Turned to Mush

Temptation Everywhere

Dating and Courtship (not there yet….honestly dreading this one too!)

Homeschooling High School

Jobs & Entrepreneurship

Doing Real Things in the Real World

Becoming Young Adults, not Sullen Teens

Loving these years! (how desperately we need to love these years!)  ❤


The next session will be held April 27, 28, 29 and May 4 and 5.  I for one plan to be delivering our daughter at some point this week. But when you sign up, if you are unable to make any of the live sessions, you can always download any classes you miss. This is great for us too since our schedules are so wacky; plus it allows my husband to listen to the sessions too when he has time.

When I complete this bootcamp there will be an awesome giveaway, care of Hal & Melanie Young: a free download of their book, Raising Real Men in both ebook and audio ebook version. Very gracious indeed!

Hearts for Home Blog Hop
<div align="center"><a href="" title="Hearts for Home Blog Hop" target="_blank"><img src="" alt="Hearts for Home Blog Hop" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

Just Give!

Matthew 25:35 (KJV):  For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:

“Are good works necessary for eternal life?” (25:35-36)

“Jesus did not teach that good deeds form the basis of our salvation. The Bible shows clearly that eternal life results from what God does, not what we do (Titus 3:4-5). We are saved by God’s grace, not by our works. Yet, God intends that those who receive his grace will also do good works (Eph. 2:8-10). True faith is more than just claiming to have faith; there is fruit that can be seen when we have true faith. Others shall know us by what we do. Genuine love for God will be expressed through service to others (1 John 3:16-18)–simply because a heart that truly loves God will be so filled with compassion for others, we will not be able to do anything but what He would do Himself. Jesus set the example for us to follow; he came to heal those in need. Good works that come from people grateful for God’s grace are at the heart of true religion (James 1:27).”


These are some truly challenging verses to pray over and meditate upon.  These actions, they are what show the true state of our hearts.  These are meant to challenge that we would reach out, show mercy, love, seek opportunities to preach His word, to those in need, more and more. Again we are shown how important it is to serve, for just as He came not to be served but to serve, so have we been called to serve.  It’s not about us but about the body of Christ; the community where He has placed us.  We are missionaries in our own homes and neighborhoods.  We must reach out; we must be still that we can hear and see where God is calling us to go, and to speak, to love and to heal. In His name and for His glory. 


We must be willing to step outside of our comfort zone and be “welcoming” to “strangers”.  We are here to meet the needs of those who are “the least of these” — the undesireables (when I was still a social worker my caseload was always jokingly referred to by that name – the ones no one else really wanted or hoped for).   We cannot turn a blind eye; we are called to love as Christ would love them. He never tells us to “play it safe” or  simply “take care of your own.” Rather again and again, He says, “When you love the outcast, you are are loving me.”  


When we are still, we are so much more aware of our surroundings. One lady wrote how this brought to mind the title of a book – The Geranium on the Windowsill Just Died, but Teacher You Went Right On.  In other words, we can be so busy we don’t notice other things around us. Are we too focused on the flowers that have died? Do we see those opportunities and needs which cross our path? 

What could happen if we really could “be still”? It makes me think of snipers – in order to make an accurate shot, they must shoot in between their own heartbeats. To do that, they have to be able to hear their heartbeat.  A study was done to show what happens when people are placed in a completely sound-proof, darkened room. When placed in complete stillness, people can hear their heartbeats, and air passing through their lungs. Can you imagine that? I can barely hear myeslf think some days. 

Imagine if we could be that still with God, what could we, would we, accomplish? Would we miss those dried up, dead flowers? What “urgent” thing could fade away as we focus on Him and His kingdom ~  What would we see that REALLY matters? 

Can I Plan to be Flexible?

I like to think of myself as a flexible, easy going person, but then… Laundry is piled up, meals are not planned, history and math were not even covered today ….. the house is a mess and education? it just has not happened. And I am freaking out! lol

In the beginning we chose home education for our family so we could stop and smell the roses; so we could be flexible. I wanted to inspire a love of learning in my children. I did not want them to grow up thinking learning was something we did at a set time, in a set place, and only certain things at certain ages. And so we started out “on fire” and we burned through boxed curriculums; workbooks and textbooks, we read and visited the library. It worked. Perfectly. Just as I planned. *ahem*

However, I think my oldest ran out of steam. He began to burn out. And we got to that place where we were not longer eager to see what we could learn today; rather we were desperate to get it done. I caught myself pressuring my son; I found myself telling him that if he would just hurry up and get it over with …. sigh  This is not working.  We had programs to complete; we had a schedule to keep. And we were already behind. I don’t have time for this. (talk about a terrible way to inspire learning eh?)

So it was a blessing, and an answer to prayer, when Plan to Be Flexible: Designing a Homeschool Year and Daily Schedule that Works for your Family came my way. And I mean that. In the introduction alone I found myself nodding; my kids hearing me utter “Amen, Amen” periodically. My oldest was surprised by the title and I was shocked when he advised me that I should “plan to be flexible because I am so not flexible”.  Excuse me? lol  After careful reflection (I admit I had to get over the being offended a bit too) I realized that as much as I thought I was, and wanted to be, flexible, I was far from it. And it was taking its toll on all of us. As I read, in the first pages alone, it spoke so clearly and loudly to my heart…. My son and I do school right now, with clenched fists and teeth, its a struggle and no one is really getting anything lovely out of it. it is not inspiring or encouraging, it is the opposite. Already this book has given such a vision, a clarity as to what we must do as mommas, and daddys too, to grow a love and desire within our kids to know and seek and do …its about loving them, trusting Him and sharing the experience and journey together…..we may not always know how but when there are materials like this out there, we have a wonderful guide to walk along the way with us…

As I read there were many times I was challenged (really challenged) to think about what we are doing and why. This is a blessing if you are as burned out as we are; how important is us for us to remember why we chose this path in the beginning. I think often, just as in our walk with God, there are times we need to sit down and look what the Lord has already done. A reminder of those blessings; oil in our lamps to keep our fire burning. Focus on enduring to the end. Joyfully of course. For me this really reminded me of how important I believe home education to be; I as able to remember and meditate upon those scriptures which speak so loudly to me of where my children belong.

“I love the mental picture of a child as a rocket and a parent as the launching pad and ground crew. We parents are given the first 18 years to shape the future trajectory of our little “rocket.” What will we use to fuel up our kids so they can blast off toward their intended destiny with power and conviction? It’s not our job to aim our child where we want them to go, but instead, through the wisdom of God, help the child discern his natural talents and interests and then help point him in that direction. It is our job as parents to prepare, guide and to lead them on their journey.”

As I said there are many gems of wisdom and inspiration within this book. There have been moments of truth; times I have to admit that it is me who wants to do Shakespeare; he wants to learn guitar even though I want him to study piano. We did German because I chose it, he wanted to learn Mandarin Chinese. I said it was too hard. He stood his ground. What example do I set by telling him that one thing is too difficult, or that another just won’t work? How do I know?  Perhaps these things he desires to learn, that I see as impossible, silly even, are things that are a part of the path which the Lord has for him. The question is, can I let go enough, step out in faith, and see what the Lord will do?

So, I cannot resign myself to, as Alicia said “… an inordinate amount of effort barking at my squirmy boys to “sit down” “pay attention” and “finish the workbook” while they moaned and groaned. this driven perfectionist felt shamed and humbled by homeschooling.” I was humbled. All my years of study, all my time as an educator, a social worker, a child development specialist…sigh

” I needed to back way off with school.” So say many veteran homeschoolers. Are they right? As one who almost needs to be organized and on schedule at all times….can I do this?

“It doesn’t matter that you are in the middle of the school year,” they explained. “You don’t want to hurt your relationships with your kids or destroy their love of learning. That is far more important than completing the expected tasks and satisfying school requirements.”

Matthew 7:16: Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?

How can I not do this? I worked through an amazing list of very thought provoking questions (the Appendix has an amazing list that covers anything you could imagine). These range from learning styles, to curriculum used, behavior (and not just the student but teacher too!) My oldest son and I talked; he “likes mom well enough as a teacher” but he admitted that he didn’t see the point to most of what we did each day He didn’t care for the things we were learning. He wanted to build and draw and write; he preferred to read and “do stuff” instead of just reading about it. And why not?

An end of the year date. Have you ever done this? I loved this idea Such detail was provided too – an excellent idea (cannot believe I did not think of it myself) particularly for my oldest son, who at almost nine, already needs his space. Already wants his opinions heard and considered. He is active and quick; curious about so any things. It amazes me that I have never before done something like this with him. And rather than planning it, we kind of just did it. While walking about the neighborhood. Of course in all of this I found that he really needed time to think about all I was asking. He needed to process and ponder a bit before we could really go further. And so as I was gardening the other day, and he was helping me too, we began talking about what bores him and what excites him. We have a lot of freedom in our state when it comes to home education so the sky is the limit in many ways. But he had so many wonderful ideas; creative ways to further his learning and I agreed to consider and pray on much of it, with my husband too, before we moved forward. If you want to more( I will be blogging our path, yesterday today and tomorrow, in the very near future so stay tuned). We are also going to be listing, as I mentioned once before, assessments of the past year and goals for the year to come. I promise I will go into way more detail here at a later date. 🙂

Getting back to Plan to Be Flexible; I had to consider, what little we use, the curriculum needs to be the servant to the student’s learning needs, not the other way around. Another honest assessment to make before we move forward for the year. But have we ever considered this before? I mean, most of us are used to completing programs without a thought to whether or not the material learned was really understood – can they express how it applies in some way? Of course this is different depending on their age but there still needs to be some way that we can assure ourselves that they really got the concept being taught.  What about the teacher? Its a reminder that is gently couched within the pages of every chapter. What about the teacher? What are my goals, how am I living up to those goals? And how can I improve upon my abilities as a teacher and mom while also expanding my own interests, sharing them with my children (after all they love to share their passions with me, only fair I do the same right?).

Have I mentioned how much of a blessing this book has been to me? Honestly, whether you are totally new to this or a seasoned homeschooler, there is much wisdom and inspiration within these pages. I feel so blessed that I was able to review this one and that there are moms like Alicia out there who are eager to share all that they have learned. This book really offers us so much freedom when we read honestly and critically, when we willingly examine ourselves and our families with the determination to win the race. We are so free when we are in Christ. Homeschool should be no different. Let us walk in faith and in liberty as we homeschool as a family, together, with Jesus at the center of it all.

James 2:18: Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.

May our homeschools be a place where we sow and reap a great harvest, for His glory 🙂



Where We Belong

I admit it – I am going to be very transparent here. I am struggling a bit right now. It is challenging me to see some very strong, lovely, Godly people who are having many trials right now – And then to see family members; steeped in sin, far from God – who are doing well. Enjoying their days and good things… I admit – i am not glad for them. It maddens me that they have, and those seeking and living for Him, have not.
I remember growing up – being a young adult- Not once did anyone come to save the day. Not family or friends. I had people there to support me and inspire me. But if I did not work, i did not eat. When I was arrested for doing something stupid, I had to pay the consequences. I had to face the music and admit what I did wrong. When I could not pay my rent; I had to get a second job so I would be able to pay. I went without a phone, I had electricity turned off once or twice.
When did we get to this place? Where kids do wrong and life just goes on. No big deal. How did we arrive in a time where a girl being pregnant, unmarried, loose, and unsure who the father is; makes her privvy to government monies, baby showers and celebrations? Where is the shame? Where is the “grow up” in all of this? My cousin, she is young, she is required to do nothing. In her mess, she is “living the good life” . Her days are full of being cared for by family and friends, even though she is repeatedly wrong. Drugs, alcohol, girls and boys, jail … no job, no education, no desire for any. It angers met. The wicked prosper….
I cannot lie, it truly upsets me. i cannot lie – I shake my fists – I seek God wanting to know why .. steeped in sin, no good thing – yet a life full of good things….It is not right.
I know. We are all sinners. We are saved by His grace and His mercy. BUT, hear me, is there not a BIG difference between those who are His, who are seeking to live ALL for Him. There is a difference between us who do everything and anything, for Him, and those who do not care for Him and the things of GOD. Why?
I am not jealous. I am not wanting those others have But what about that sweet couple who wants a baby? who understands and is ready to be a mom and a dad. what about that inspiring older couple;so full of Him and His spirit – they live a beautiful life that one cannot doubt, is all for Jesus – they can barely get by. Perhaps one has no car and takes the bus or a taxi, faithfully, to church for services. Another teaches Bible Studies, coming to others who are seeking. They struggle, they fight to just keep their head above water. And in all of, for all they have, they give God the glory.
It’s about eternity.  This world – it is not for us. The joy, the things that those of this world have, they do not, and should not, matter to us. I am not angry now. I am sad, for all those out there who are rescued by man again and again, never being left to stand on their own. never having been taught how to make a way. I am sad for those who may never know God, because the world has given them so many good things – too many good days and good friends and good things – they do not need God.  i am sad for them because all of this, counts for nothing, when we consider what really matters. Bless those who struggle, and do so full of the joy only Jesus can give. Bless those who just know, that while the wicked prosper, they have MORE in Christ alone.
Save me Lord for “my feet had almost stumbled, my steps had nearly slipped.  For I was envious of the arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked” (Ps 73:2-3.)  i feel like Asaph truly; so bothered by seeing  the riches of those who are not living for Him. I can admit it. Some days I admit I pray this: “All in vain have I kept my heart clean and washed my hands in innocence.  For all the day long I have been stricken and rebuked every morning” (Ps 73:13-14.)  There is no doubt there are days I have to ask why? Why do I struggle to live for God when those who don’t have so much more? Is there a point? Why is every day a new struggle for me while they eat and drink in joy and sin?
God is so gracious though – to keep our feet in a place where we do not stumble. HE reminds me, as I believe He reminded Asaph (truly a Godly and righteous man): …when I thought how to understand this”… (the prosperity of the wicked compared to  the hardships of God’s people… “it seemed to me a wearisome task, until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I discerned their end” (Ps 73:16-17.)  We praise and we worship; it is then only, that we see how Truly you set them in slippery places, you make them fall to ruin.”   He sets them in a place where they will fall.  God will cause them ruin. Though they seem to have it all right now, in this world…  ultimately in the end is destruction and it will come.  “They will be swept away utterly by terrors.” In the end those whose names are not written in the Lamb’s Book of Life will be cast into the lake of fire where they will suffer forever (Rev 20:15.)  What they have now is of no matter. They enjoy all these things but none can save. Perhaps some days we forget what is in store for those who are so “Rich” right now.
Nevertheless… (Ps 73:23.)”  In all of my foolishness; as I covet an easy life for myself, for those I love…I miss the bigger picture. I forget how much greater what we have, is compared to all that they have. I lose sight; like a dumb animal (Ps 73:21-22.). Who wants the blessings that are upon the wicked? I am ashamed of myself for thinking it at all.
I am continually with you; you hold my right hand.  You guide me with your counsel and afterward you will receive me to glory.” 
God is all I need. HE is all we ever need. Focus on the eternal.
Whom have I in heaven but you?  And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you.  My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever” (Ps 73:25-26.) 
God is our reward. May we never forget. Remove our eyes from those wicked that are before us and look up . Seek His kingdom.  If we look to the world, if we compare with the world ~ there is o comparison. Great is our reward and that reward is Him. For all of eternity. This world is dark; it gets darker all the time. Right is wrong and wrong is right. There is no good thing here for us. As His children, let us never forget we are  in the world but we are NOT of the world.

Build Your Bundle Affiliate Program

I am SOOOOOO excited about joining the Build Your Bundle Affiliate Program!!!!

What is it you ask? Let me tell you:

The “Build Your Bundle” – Homeschool Edition Sale is designed to contain the best educational digital products on the internet! Sprinkled throughout the bundles are well known publishers, including products on Cathy Duffy’s Top 100 list!

Unlike overwhelming bundle sales with nearly a hundred ebooks, the “Build Your Bundle” – Homeschool Edition is a brand new concept that will allow homeschoolers to pick and choose what they want to purchase ~ all at a MASSIVE discount of up to 92% off!

As an afilliate:

  • You can earn 30% commission on your own sales and another 10% commission on sales for affiliates you recruit.
  • There will be focused bundles for the following:  Tot/Prek, K-3, 4-6, Middle School, High School, Charlotte Mason,  and Moms.
  • There will be an option to build your own bundles by picking the grades you want only as well as an option to build your own bundle.
  • These bundles are filled with products from well-known homeschool publishers, even some from Cathy Duffy’s Top 100 Picks!
  • The savings to your readers will be up to 92% off!

Singing … “AWESOME … ”

I usually am not one to promote this kind of thing but if you love your home education and “collect” stuff the way I do, you do not want to miss out on this one 🙂

Sign up as an affiliate for the first ever “Build Your Bundle” – Homeschool Edition Sale and earn money, plus recruit affiliates to join with your unique link and earn off of their commissions too!