God Doesn’t Always Answer The Way We Think HE Should

Written by Jonathan on . Posted in Blog, Challenging, Dads, Encouragement, Faith Conversations, Prayers

The last two weeks have been difficult. A beautiful, talented, dynamic 17 year old girl from the church where we had served for 12 years did not recover from an injury incurred from a skateboarding accident. As friends of the family and her former youth pastor, I was asked to speak at the service. She was an amazing young woman. I shed more tears in the last two weeks than the last five years. Almost 700 grieving teens, parents, and family members arrived seeking to find comfort and answers.

In the hospital, Haley’s parents and I, holding on to Haley, prayed for almost an hour on our knees weeping, crying out to the Lord of Heaven and of Earth for His healing touch. I recounted all the healings I had personally experienced and those recorded in the Bible. I believed He would answer.

3 Things Every Dad Should Do After Pulling In The Driveway (Part 3)

Written by Jonathan on . Posted in Blog, Dads, Encouragement, Ideas, leaving a legacy, Resources

3 things every dad#1. Find Mom. (click here for part 1.)

#2. Sit  (click here for part 2.)

#3. LEAD.  (Time: 15+)

Not like a drill sergeant.  Your family needs you to lead them to the heart of God; to be a family that faithfully follows Christ.

“As for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.” Joshua 24.15

As the father goes, so goes the family.  Our influence as dads is a mysterious wonder.  We (maybe I’m speaking for myself here) need reminding how our leadership (or lack of) impacts our family.  (Read this article I wrote of a compilation of dad stats.)

It is so easy to rely on vacations, cheering at sporting events and dropping them off church, for checking the box of being a good Christian dad.  There is so much more.

Our Greatest Goal as Parents

Written by Jonathan on . Posted in Blog, Challenging, Dads, Encouragement, Moms

new greatest goalI remember reminding frustrated youth leaders, and members of our congregation, that the students in youth group who were not believers can’t be expected to bear the fruit of one who knows the Lord.  But they insisted they shouldn’t act the way they do. Following Christ isn’t about behavioral modification.

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit…” John 15:5

What about our own children?  Behavioral modification will not produce the fruit a parent truly desires for their child.  It is all too easy (for me too) to fall into the trap of focusing too much on bad behavior (“that wasn’t nice.” “Don’t do that!” “You can do better!”  “You forgot?”)  As parents with a Kingdom vision, our concern is not that they act right.  Our vision is much grander and deeper.  Our #1 mission is that our children join Jesus.  I’ve seen lots and lots of teens do all the right things and then they go off to college and they take a turn for the worse.

We have to remember, Jesus invited us to join Him.  Chuck Bomar, in his new book, Losing Your Religion, states, “The good news Jesus offered was that He invites us into His life. Not vice versa”.   Zacchaeus was a changed man because he responded to Jesus’ invitation.  Jesus said to the disciples, ‘Come and follow me.'”

Our children will not live out a faith in Christ because they attend children’s church every Sunday, attend mission trips, and are a good kid.  They will only grow up and leave the roost following Jesus with all their heart, soul, strength and mind if they accept the invitation to be a part of His life.  There is a difference between inviting Jesus into our life, our plans, our desires and accepting the invitation to join His life, His plans, His desires.

Our greatest goal as parents is to help our children join Jesus.

How are you leading your children to know, love and follow Jesus?

Do they see the Christian life as a bunch rules to follow or an adventure?  What adventures have your family been on?

Love God with everything. Love your kids.  Lead them to the heart of the Father. And with His grace, they will love Him too.

Best Homemade Fireworks and Other 4th of July Fun

Written by Jonathan on . Posted in Blog, Dads, Humor, Ideas

The 4th of July is a great time to forget about all the stuff on our to do list and focus a day (or weekend) on our family.  Dads, I definitely want to encourage you to take some time off from the honey-do-list and projects around the house to create some fantastic memories by having some creative fun.  Here are a few ways to create some memories that will be fun for all!
Steel Wool Sparks You will definitely want to see these pictures!  These are our kids in action!

   

  

These are the best fireworks we have ever done (and the cheapest)!  My dad taught me this as a kid and now my kids have a blast, too. (Thanks Dad!)

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Get some plain steel wool (no soap). There are different grades. Get the middle grade.  The coarse doesn’t lite and the super fine burns too quickly.
  2. Get a whisk from the dollar store, tie it on the end of a metal clothes hanger.  Metal hanger works best, because you can bend the end to make a handle and it keeps it at a distance.
  3. Place the steel wool in the whisk and light it until just part of it is glowing and then start twisting it around as fast as you can!  AMAZING!

WARNING: Homes Devoted is not responsible for any harm or fires started, so perform them wisely. We’ve never had any burning from the sparks.  🙂   Make sure you are in an open area!  Wearing a hat is advisable.


Relay to put the Declaration of Independence in order!    Have fun and teach your kids more about the holiday.  (Divide into 2+ teams for this competition) Click here for all the info


Some Sporting Fun 

  

I probably wouldn’t make it this fancy, but this is a $5 tarp.  Your kids can help you make it.


Like Trivia? Here is a link to a 4th of July trivia game.

 

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Melobourne, FL 32904
Phone: 1-321-223-1163