Thoughts from Pastor Randy…

Sent Ones

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Jesus Talk

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Praying on Street Corner

“As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world.” John 17:18

Jesus sent His people into the world.

Go talk to people about Jesus!

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“So he was reasoning in the synagogue with the Jews and the God-fearing Gentiles, and in the market place every day with those who happened to be present.” Acts 17:17

[/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Tools” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%173%%” icon_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.navigators.org/Tools”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Experiences” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%154%%” icon_color=”#c94e7f” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”https://www.facebook.com/groups/1779147522311161/”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]



Doing What’s Best

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Marriage and Family

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Dewater 4

“do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.”  Philippians 2:4

What a week I had last week with my boys! We went on our annual hunting trip to eastern Oregon where my grandparents had hunted for over 50 years. In the last 15 years, our party has only brought home two deer. That changed this year. My 13-year-old shot his first deer at 200 yards on Monday, I got mine on Tuesday, and my dad got one on Wednesday. The bummer was, my wife had school and was not there to see it.

As good of a week we had, I was looking forward to being home with my wife. The only problem was, when I did get home, my mind was on myself, what I wanted, what I felt I needed. It’s funny how when we think only of ourselves, our relationships start going sideways. Thankfully, my wife is very patient with me. I straightened up, asked her and God to forgive me; and we are back on track!

The verse above gives great insight into how we should approach our relationships in life. It is especially important to the ONE relationship that effects family and society; marriage. It is hard for me to always be on the lookout for the interests of my wife, but that is exactly what I need to do if I am going to have the best marriage in the world. Looking out for the best interest of your spouse not only leads to a happy marriage but pleases the Lord!

My encouragement for us this week: Look out for the best interest of your spouse!

When both husband and wife practice looking out for the interests of each other, they will begin to experience a joy that is meant for their marriage.

Have a great week looking out for the interests of your spouse!

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”on” height=”10″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”off” height=”20″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Marriage Scripture” url_new_window=”off” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%254%%” icon_color=”#c6b04d” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”] Ephesians 5:22-33 [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Marriage Tools” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%173%%” icon_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.focusonthefamily.com/marriage”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Discovering Your Spouse” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%176%%” icon_color=”#c94e7f” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.flagpage.com/”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Jesus Talk

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Praying on Street Corner

“do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.”  Philippians 2:4

What a week I had last week with my boys! We went on our annual hunting trip to eastern Oregon where my grandparents had hunted for over 50 years. In the last 15 years, our party has only brought home two deer. That changed this year. My 13-year-old shot his first deer at 200 yards on Monday, I got mine on Tuesday, and my dad got one on Wednesday. The bummer was, my wife had school and was not there to see it.

As good of a week we had, I was looking forward to being home with my wife. The only problem was, when I did get home, my mind was on myself, what I wanted, what I felt I needed. It’s funny how when we think only of ourselves, our relationships start going sideways. Thankfully, my wife is very patient with me. I straightened up, asked her and God to forgive me; and we are back on track!

The verse above gives great insight into how we should approach our relationships in life. It is especially important to the ONE relationship that effects family and society; marriage. It is hard for me to always be on the lookout for the interests of my wife, but that is exactly what I need to do if I am going to have the best marriage in the world. Looking out for the best interest of your spouse not only leads to a happy marriage but pleases the Lord!

My encouragement for us this week: Look out for the best interest of your spouse!

When both husband and wife practice looking out for the interests of each other, they will begin to experience a joy that is meant for their marriage.

Have a great week looking out for the interests of your spouse!

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“So he was reasoning in the synagogue with the Jews and the God-fearing Gentiles, and in the market place every day with those who happened to be present.” Acts 17:17

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Start At Home

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Jesus Talk

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Praying on Street Corner

“And, fathers, do no provoke your children to anger; but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” Ephesians 6:4

Last evening, I took my boys to get a bite to eat at McDonalds. We go to McDonalds not because it is fine dining, but because we can eat there for under $12. I took my Bible with me so that I could read to my boys and talk to them about the most important thing in life; God’s Word. It was an AWESOME time!

I know this is starting to sound like my Marriage and Family blog, but really it is all about talking to people about Jesus. So often, it is almost easier to talk to people at church or strangers at the park about Jesus. When in reality, God would have us start in our own home. Last night was a great reminder for me that my talking to people about Jesus needs to start in my own home.

My encouragement for us this week: Make a plan for when and how you will talk to the people in your own home about Jesus.

When you start talking about Jesus on a regular basis to people in your own home, you will find that you will be more effective talking to others outside of your home about Him.

Have a great week talking about Jesus!

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“So he was reasoning in the synagogue with the Jews and the God-fearing Gentiles, and in the market place every day with those who happened to be present.” Acts 17:17

[/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Tools” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%173%%” icon_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.navigators.org/Tools”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Experiences” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%154%%” icon_color=”#c94e7f” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”https://www.facebook.com/groups/1779147522311161/”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]



Successful Families

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Marriage and Family

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Dewater 4

“Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.” Joshua 1:8

I am challenged today by a statement from the book Family to Family. It says,

“The success of our families will be determined by our commitment to know and live the principles of God’s Word.”[1]

I find that I get lazy in helping my family actually live out God’s Word.

My encouragement for us this week: Get intentional about helping your family live God’s Word.

Have a great week helping your family live out God’s Word!

[1] Dr. Jerry Pipes and Victor Lee, Family to Family, 3.

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Everything You Need for Life!

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Jesus Talk

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Praying on Street Corner

“seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.” 2 Peter 1:3

Do you ever wish that you had more than you have right now? I go through times like that myself! My family really like sports, the outdoors, camping, etc. We have had conversations that started off with, “Wouldn’t it be cool to own a GI Joes store (when they were still in business)! Yah! We could use anything in the store whenever we wanted!” GI Joes had everything a person could want to play, workout, camp, hunt, fish, etc.!

How about when it comes to talking to people about Jesus? Do you ever wish you had more ability, more courage, more opportunity? Me too!

I gave a message in church yesterday from 2 Peter 1:1-11. Of course, it included the verse above that tells us that God has given us everything for life and godliness. Did you hear that? EVERYTHING… Last I checked, talking to people about Jesus is a part of life along with being the godly thing to do. Does that mean that God has given us everything we need to talk to people about Jesus? Yes!

Here is the Key, “through the true knowledge of Him”. There is lots of information in the world. Some of it is true and some of it is not. The same thing applies to information about God. Not all the information in the world is true about God. God wants us to know Him. That is why He gave us His Word. As we spend time getting to know Him through His Word and talking with Him through prayer, we will be receiving everything we need for life. Gaining true knowledge of God is like an outdoorsman owning a GI Joes store. Whatever he could possibly need is at his disposal because God has everything he needs.

As Christians, we have the responsibility to talk to others about Jesus. As we gain true knowledge of God through His word, He will give us everything we need to do just that!

My encouragement for us this week: Work at gaining true knowledge of God! Read two chapters of the Bible every day this week*, think about what it says, and ask yourself these questions, (1) what does this tell me about God?, (2) what does God want me to do?, (3) who does God want me to be?

Have a great week talking to people about Jesus!

 

*If you don’t know where to start, try the book of John.

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“So he was reasoning in the synagogue with the Jews and the God-fearing Gentiles, and in the market place every day with those who happened to be present.” Acts 17:17

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Working Hard and Smart

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Marriage and Family

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Dewater 4

“How blessed is the man who finds wisdom, and the man who gains understanding.” Proverbs 3:13

I have the best marriage in the world!

I am married to my best friend!

Marriage is work, but so worth the effort!

This week my wife started commuting back to school. She completed her first year of nursing last spring and now is moving ahead for her RN. With my wife’s commute, our boys in new schools, my new job, and our new community; this school year is going to be a challenge for our family. In all of this, wisdom and understanding is key to having a marriage that thrives.

Are the statements above your feelings toward marriage today, this week, this month? I am finding that these are not common feelings among the majority of married couples. And yet, God is the one who instituted the marriage covenant from the beginning (Genesis 2:24). When God makes something, not only is it supposed to be a blessing to Him, but it is supposed to be a blessing to us. Marriage should be a blessing to both the husband and wife! This doesn’t mean it’s easy. Marriage is work, but it is a work that is worth the effort! Those who work hard and smart at their marriage will experience the blessing that marriage can be; even in the busyness of life.

When my wife got home from school yesterday, she shared with me that she listened to a couple of broadcasts on marriage from Focus on the Family. This was so excited to me! My wife was listening to teachings about marriage that were helping her have wisdom and understanding to grow our marriage!

So, what does it mean to work hard and smart at marriage. I believe some very helpful application comes from the scripture above when we think about it in light of marriage.

Working Hard to find wisdom will bless your marriage. Proverbs is full of exhortations to search out wisdom. Wisdom does not come from the amount of years one has been alive, nor the amount of years one has been married; Wisdom comes from the Lord (Prov 2:6).  Seeking God for wisdom to be a good husband or wife is the hard work that results in a great marriage. Seek God for wisdom to be a better spouse!

Working Smart to gain understanding will bless your marriage. To understand something or someone is key to having a successful relationship. There are many tools available to gain understanding in regards to marriage and relationships. Work smart by gaining understanding to help your marriage grow!

My encouragement for us this week: Work hard and smart to seek wisdom and gain understanding for your marriage!

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Let It Change You!

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Jesus Talk

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Praying on Street Corner

“And we also thank God constantly for this, that when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men but as what it really is, the word of God, which is at work in you believers.” 1 Thessalonians 2:13

Have you ever read a paragraph, chapter, or book and realized that you really didn’t get it? For some reason, your mind didn’t hang onto the words that were reading. Maybe you were day dreaming of something else as your eyes were following along the sentences; you thought you were reading until you got to the end and realized that you really didn’t read it because you have no idea what you just read. Unfortunately, that happens to me way more often than I would like to admit to.

How about with your Bible reading? Unfortunately, it is no different when it comes to my Bible reading. This morning, I got to the end of a section, and I realized my mind was somewhere completely different. And so, I started over. And then I came to the last statement in the verse above:

which is at work in you believers.”

This statement was a wake-up call to me this morning. The sentence leading up to this statement gives us what is at work in these believers; “the word of God.” I looked up the phrase, “is at work”, to really get a grasp of what is being said here. This phrase means to “produce an effect”.[1]

The word of God is to “produce an effect” in the people that read it. It is not to just go in one ear and out the other. It is to go in, fill our mind and our heart until the message penetrates us so deeply that our thinking and actions become what God desires.

Let’s apply this:

Since God’s word is to “produce an effect” in me; What does this mean for me?

  1. As I read God’s Word, I need to meditate (think and mull over) on it so that it can really produce change in my mind and heart. I need to work at getting something out of it so that can become God’s man.
  2. I should be prepared to give God’s word to others when I have the chance so that it can “produce an effect” in them that God desires.

When I allow God’s word to change me, I will grow in my desire to share His word with others!

My encouragement for us this week: Work at allowing God’s word to change you. Don’t just allow the words to escape you; really work at allowing God’s word to penetrate your heart and mind. As we do this, we will become more effective in sharing His word with others.

Have a great week being changed by God’s Word and giving His word to others!

[1] Dr. Spiros Zodhiates, AMG’s Annotated Strong’s Greek Dictionary of the New Testament, 2117.

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“So he was reasoning in the synagogue with the Jews and the God-fearing Gentiles, and in the market place every day with those who happened to be present.” Acts 17:17

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Family Meetings Make Me Laugh!

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Marriage and Family

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Dewater 4

“Let this be a sign among you, so that when your children ask later, saying, ‘What do these stones mean to you?’ then you shall say to them, ‘Because the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord; when it crossed the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off.’ So these stones shall become a memorial to the sons of Israel forever.” Joshua 4:6-7

Did you have family meetings growing up? I did. Every once in a while, my parents would gather us four kids into the living room and have a serious talk with us about the day to day life of our family. As I recall, it usually centered around the theme of chores; they were probably not getting done and so we needed to meet and talk about it again. I really don’t remember all that we talked about, because I was too busy laughing. You see, I didn’t like getting in trouble, and whenever we had a family meeting I felt nervous like I was going to be in trouble for something. As my parents started talking, I would start laughing from my nervousness. I would laugh uncontrollably. I couldn’t stop. I think I have a block in my mind as to how my parents dealt with that.

Last evening, my wife and I had a family meeting with our boys. The first thing on our agenda was to add to our memorial rocks. We have a tradition in our house to write down on rocks things that God has done in our lives. We store these rocks in a large vase and then once a year we go through them together, one by one, and remember what God has done. There may have been some laughing last evening, but not for the same reasons as I was growing up.

How about you? What traditions does your family have to help you remember what God has done? The scripture above is one example of when the Israelites made a memorial so that their children would remember what God had done for them. In the world that we live, with all the bad and evil going on, it is so easy to forget the good things that God does in our life. To the degree that our families remember Who God is and what He has done for us; it is to that degree that our families will continue to pursue after Him!

My Encouragement for us this week: Take time with your family to remember what God has done!

If you are thinking, ‘I’m not sure what God has done for me or my family’, then spend some time seeking Him and He will help you remember. You could also talk discuss it with a friend or family member to remember what God has done. Try starting with the cross and go from there!

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New Paint

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Jesus Talk

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Praying on Street Corner

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which on the outside appear beautiful, but inside they are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness.” Matthew 23:27

Did you know that pastors paint? I guess probably not every pastor paints, but this one does! This morning I painted one of the women’s restrooms in our church building. It is amazing to me how much cutting in there is in a restroom like that. It took me twice as long as I had expected it would take. Cutting in along the ceiling, cutting in around the light fixtures, cutting in around the toilet stalls where they are connected to the walls. It is such a relief when I get a section cut in so that I can grab the roller and roll the big surface.

In the passage above, Jesus was rebuking the religious leaders of the day because they were only concerned with their outside; what other people saw. They wanted to look good in front of men, but they were not concerned with caring for what was on the inside, their heart. Jesus let them know that the inside is just as important as what is happening on the outside.

Well, painting a restroom is kinda like caring for the inside. It is so nice to have clean, fresh painted walls. New colors, fresh paint smell, a good look. It is important to care for the inside!

What does painting a women’s restroom have to do with talking to people about Jesus? Great question. The thought came to me as I was cleaning up from the job, ‘in order to be truly effective in reaching people for Jesus, we need to pay attention and care for the inside as well.’ Obviously our women’s restroom is on the inside of our church building. But I am referring to the inside of you and me; our hearts! As we strive to reach people for Jesus, we need to make sure that we pay close attention to what is going on inside of our hearts.

My encouragement for us this week: Allow Jesus to wash and paint any surfaces inside of you that may need it this week!  Jesus is concerned with your heart just as much as He is concerned with those you are reaching!

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“So he was reasoning in the synagogue with the Jews and the God-fearing Gentiles, and in the market place every day with those who happened to be present.” Acts 17:17

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Family Transformation!

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Marriage and Family

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Dewater 4

“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:2

One thing my family really enjoys doing together is having a movie night. Often times, we will get pizza and have dessert while we watch the movie. After our last movie night, we were getting ready for bed, and my younger son came into the room. He said, “Dad, why didn’t the elders show up when those guys said they would? Were they lying?” My son’s question was in reference to the part of the movie when Navy Seals were going to rescue someone and they had told the enemy what he wanted to hear so that he would do what they wanted him to do. This was a hard question for me and I wanted to make sure that I answered it the way God would. I knew that whatever I told my son would mark his thinking for the future.

The scripture above tells us something about what we are supposed to be doing with our thinking. You see, the world has a mold or form (ie. Jello mold), that it wants to pour us into. God tells us not to be poured into their form, but to be transformed. This transformation doesn’t happen on its own. It doesn’t even happen by simply reading this one verse and agreeing with it.

The culture in which we live says, “The Navy Seals weren’t lying, they were doing their job to protect someone.” Culture goes on to say that “lying is OK if it helps someone, including yourself.” Is this what I want my son to learn? That if he can help someone or help himself, it’s OK to lie?

God’s word is the only thing that can transform our minds into what God’s wants them to be. Proverbs 23:7 says, “For as he thinks within himself, so he is.” You see, the things we allow our mind and heart to dwell on, that is what we are going to become.

How would you have answered your child? What passage from God’s Word would you have used to help guide your answer?

My encouragement for us this week: Help yourself and Help your Family be transformed by God!

5 Steps You can take to Help Yourself and Help Your Family Be Transformed by God:

  1. Read God’s Word Out loud together
  2. Make a Bible Reading Plan for Your Family to Follow daily/weekly
  3. Pray Together Out loud as a Family
  4. Listen to God Honoring Music
  5. Help Your Family Memorize scripture

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