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Category: » Marriage & Family - Blasted Gourds

Archives for : Marriage & Family

For All The Moms Out There

Here is a fun article that is also very practical and biblical on motherhood.  I know that in the midst of mothering one can be overwhelmed at times and there can be a grasping for purpose and progress.  This article, containing an interview with Holly Ellif , ought to be an encouragement to not grow weary in well doing.  Amidst funny stories of her own experiences as a mother, her main point is clearly made:

Motherhood is about eternity. It is not just about this moment. God clearly defines this in Romans 8:28 and 29. That verse where it says God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose.

What is His purpose? For us to be conformed to the image of Christ. Motherhood is one of God’s very best tools for that molding, that conforming in our life

(ht:tc)

Why Do Marriages Fail?

Lately, I have been reading a small but helpful Banner of Truth book by Walter Chantry,  Shadow of the Cross, and one chapter deals with “Marriage and Self-Denial”.  In it he offers 3 reasons why marriages and homes are falling apart in western society.

  1. Spouses may be ignorant of the well-marked boundaries which God has set for them
  2. Spouses may raise clenched fists of defiance against the Most High
  3. Remaining corruption and slight progress in grace may prevent husband and wife from executing known precepts of the Lord

He concludes this paragraph by quoting Isaiah 45:9 “Woe to him who strives with him who formed him” (ESV).  Our problems in life are usually simply, we or those around us have failed to do things God’s way.  The fix is not difficult to figure out, but is often refused because it requires us to deny ourselves and give up our own way.

Love Dare

Over the last two Sunday nights I have been preaching on “putting on” love and “pursuing” love based upon 1 Corinthians 13 and 14.  I had a friend point me in the direction of  a “Daily Love Dare” at www.familylife.com  It seems to be something based on a book, Love Dare, and the movie Fireproof.   Admittedly, I have never read the book or watched the movie, (I have heard good feedback and read good reviews about the storyline of the movie) I don’t even know much about the familylife website.

All that said, the first days challenge for the Daily Love Dare got me thinking about what we have been looking at on Sunday evenings.  So, here is the challenge:

Love Dare – Day 1

Resolve to say nothing negative about your spouse today.
Ephesians 4:2

First, try it with your spouse or family and see if you have developed negative, unloving, unkind, ungentle habits.  Now take that dare and apply it to the church body:

Resolve to say nothing negative about your church next Lord’s day.

It will be interesting to find out how many negative things you actually say to and about others in just one day, and that day is the one day when you are supposed to be focused the most on being in one Spirit and in harmony.  Come on, I double dog dare you!

College Football and Adoption

I love this time of year. The fall colors, the beat of a marching band, the sounds of college football. Even if you are not a college football fan, the following ESPN story will warm your heart.

And just for fun along the family theme here is an artist/songwriter, Andrew Peterson, that I have really begun to enjoy lately.

(HT: Matt Foreman)

Marriage

Derek Thomas has a great article about the joy marriage is supposed to be, the dangers of sin within marriage, and our objective of having our marriage bring lasting glory to God. It is brief and a bit choppy, but calls attention to the many threatening views our society holds about marriage. It is both an encouraging and convicting read. His thesis statement is pivotal for all to understand:

None of our family relations will be right unless we fear God. This is the soul of godliness – fearing Him

Much of the article is aimed at men, but there is application for all.

Having Kids To the Glory of God

Justin Taylor had a post about adoption that pointed to Shaohannah’s Hope. I watched this video and it reminded me of a thought I had while on my roof cleaning out the gutters Monday (ah my random thought life). While adoptions is a wonderful thing, it is also a reminder that so is having our own children. Sometimes adoption may make what we are doing more intentional, caring for this child, teaching them the things of God, giving of ourselves, etc., but we who have unadopted children need to be intentional as well. Did we have children to glorify God? Are we raising them to the glory of God? No matter under what circumstance you had children, this is the goal. It is so difficult in the midst of daily whiningvand fussing to forget and just try to make it through another day, but God has given us our children as a gift, for our good and pleasure, but ultimately for His glory. It is easy to forget this simple truth, we have a responsibility to bring Him glory in our parenting.
There appear to be 3 attitudes parents fall into:

  1. Shepherds: Rearing children for God’s Glory.
  2. Wardens: Ready to give up or trying to maintain peace, but with no real joy.
  3. Golden Calf Herders: Love their children to the point that they become idols.

I will write about each in the following days.

Why Don’t You go to Bed Song

This video is spreading on the blogs today, but for those of you who haven’t seen it, who have children, enjoy!

(HT: Justin Taylor)

Good Old Fashion Parents are still better than DVD’s

TUESDAY, Aug. 7 (HealthDay News) — DVDs and videos that claim to help boost infants’ ability to learn new words may actually hinder their language development, a new study says.

For every hour a day spent watching baby DVDs and videos, infants between 8 and 16 months old understood an average of six to eight fewer words than infants who didn’t watch them. The baby DVDs/videos had no positive or negative effect on the vocabulary of toddlers ages 17 to 24 months.

“There are only a fixed number of hours that young babies are awake and alert. If the ‘alert time’ is spent in front of DVDs and TV instead of with people speaking in ‘parentese’ — that melodic speech we use with little ones — the babies are not getting the same linguistic experience,” Meltzoff said.

You can read the whole article here.  Several thoughts:

  • be slow to trust new scientific studies.
  • nothing can replace relationships.
  • God knew what He was doing by creating parents and families rather then DVD’s to train children.
  • This applies to adult growth and development as well, one cannot grow as much or properly simply through DVD’s, books, or Internet.  Relationships are a key part of God’s plan for us to grow spiritually.

Ted Tripp is in my Head

Recently several young couples in our church went through half of the video series on Shepherding a Child’s Heart. It was convicting and encouraging then, but more convicting today. He often taught about listening to our children. He encourages parents to ask questions and find out what the deeper issues are rather than provoking our children to wrath on the surface issues that really aren’t the problem.

I had gotten on one of our children today about a tardy note. I wanted her to understand this was not acceptable (we have been working with our children about not piddling). The tardy happened because she wanted to get a notebook out of the school vending machine, had trouble with the machine, and was then late. I was ready to set the course straight, “you should not be tardy!” The discussion caused her to get more upset than I thought it would. Next I saw a very sad face had been quickly drawn on the first page of the new notebook. The issue then moved on to not pouting. Nothing was going to get by me today! During the course of lunch we began to discuss the notebook and why she had all of her friends sign in it. Turns out Dad and Mom had failed to purchase a yearbook, and this week was yearbook week and all her friends had received theirs and were signing each others. Now the tears really poured down, this was the real issue.

We never thought twice about the reason we had been asked for 4 quarters for a notebook the morning before. I spoke too quickly and made a special notebook a mark of shame. The real issue had gotten completely by me and was nearly missed. I was reminded again of how important it is to make sure we are daily connecting to our children. To make sure we are asking questions and then listening, so that we are dealing with the real issues.

Civilized Women

Here is a blip from a recent article found on Dr. Al Mohler’s  blog.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad played the media like a musical instrument, greeting the captives just prior to their release. The Muslim world loved it. Tragically, the most damaging element of Ahmadinejad’s media triumph was handed to him by the Royal Navy in the person of Leading Seaman Faye Turney, the only woman among the captives and the mother of a 3-year-old daughter.

Her presence among the captives taken from the British patrol vessel gave Ahmadinejad the opportunity to make this observation:

“You will know that among the detainees there is one lady who is a mother of a child. Why is it that the most difficult work like patrolling at sea should be given to a woman?

“Why is there no respect for motherhood? Why does the West not value its women?”

Ahmadinejad’s questions still reverberate around the Muslim world. Nothing could more effectively demonstrate the immorality of Western values before Muslim eyes than this — a mother of a little girl sent as a warrior.

As you step back and look at the differences between the Western and Muslim world one of the key difference is the treatment of women, and neither worldview on the topic is totally correct.  We think we are superior and far more intelligent because we have given women “equal” rights and have allowed them to function equal to men in nearly every way.  They think they are superior because they view the woman’s place as in the home raising children, or at the least, certainly not as a warrior.  Funny thing about this?  We consider ourselves more civilized, more educated, and yet we think the elevation of women is to treat them as equals to men.  My wife is not my equal.  There are many ways in which she is superior to me and there are ways in which I am superior to her, and much of this comes because she is a woman and I am a man.  Why can’t we, who are so educated, see the difference?