Cultivate Christ

“And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God.” John 17:3

I still get goose bumps when I read this verse. We can have a taste of eternal life here and now. We get to know, experience and relate to the God of the universe who cares so much about each of our lives.

Living our lives for Jesus brings peace and order to a heart, despite living in a chaotic, flawed and dying world.

My goal is to recognize God’s hand in every aspect of our lives – both the exciting and the mundane. He created all of it and as I learn to recognize this, I find a joy that is indescribable. His fingerprints are everywhere. We just need eyes to see.

As a parent, I want to help my children make these connections as well, so that as a family we would bask in knowing Jesus and be His hands and feet to a world that is crushed and hurting.

Nothing is more important than cultivating our relationship with Jesus. It needs to be a priority not only in my own life, but also take priority in how I raise my kids.

Here are some links to articles and resources that have been helpful and inspiring to me as we walk this journey of faith.

Related posts on this subject:

 

Knowing Him More

Carving out time each day to talk with God and read His Word are critical. That is when I refuel, seek direction and just enjoy being with God.  When this takes place is constantly in flux as parenting never tends to be a static scheduled kind of thing. 🙂  Currently (since I’m sleeping through the night – mostly) it works best to do it in the quiet early morning time before everyone else comes downstairs.  Other times it is during naptime, after the kids go down for bed or those drastic moments when I grab a few minutes with the bathroom door locked to cry out to God or read a few verses and prepare myself for those next moments…  However and whenever this happens, I’ve found that I can’t survive without spending time with Him.

In addition to prayer and meditation, I’ve found it so helpful to be grounded in His Word. We learn more about God, fall deeper in love with Him and learn how to interact with each other and a hurting and dying world through the Bible.  It is indespensible as I take on this task of raising my children.  I need to know what the Bible says so I can discern and live out this new life that I profess to have.

Precept Bible Studies ~ There are many different types of Bible studies out there. I love the Precept studies because it encourages me to read God’s Word for myself and discover that He has to say instead of merely relying on other’s interpretation. I consider my time studying the Bible not only an investment for me, but also one that benefits my kids. As I grow and learn, I’m able to pass this on to my kids.

Good Morning Girls ~ If you don’t have time to get out of the house to a study or want something a little simpler than a Precept study, I highly recommend doing a study with the Good Morning Girls.  I love their simple method of getting straight into scripture, making observations, applications and then praying the Word.

AWANA – This Bible club for kids (3yrs-12th grade) gives kids and parents a framework for laying a great foundation in the Bible. I love this program because of its focus on God, His Word and how we relate to Him instead of just how we should behave. Its age appropriate focus on scripture memory is so helpful as I seek to consistently and lovingly introduce my little one’s to Jesus. I did Awana growing up and the Holy Spirit uses those seeds that were planted in my formative years to encourage me now. I’ve blogged about it here. While I could institute a Bible memory program here at home, I love how this keeps us accountable and moving right along instead of putting it off which I’m often times prone to do…

Seeds Family Worship – these are wonderful, catchy Bible verses put to song. Truth put to song is a wonderful way to combat worry, stress, disappointment and life’s temptations for both the kids and for us!

The Big Picture Story Bible – A delightful Bible is a compelling telling of God’s love story for us and how redemption is woven all thru the Bible.

The JESUS Story Book Bible – another favorite

Arch Books – these rhyming Bible stories are a great way to introduce Biblical accounts to children. I read these as a girl and loved them. I appreciate that they go beyond the ‘typical’ Bible stories and really help with Bible literacy. Where else will you get a picture book about Zerubabel or Pentecost?

10 Adventure Books to Build a Boy’s Faith 

Enjoying His Presence

“Our real problem [of not experiencing God in the routine of life and work]…is not a lack of time; it is, I fear, in too many of us, lack of joyful, enthusiastic delight in Him, lack of deep, deep-drawing love directed toward Him at every hour of the day and night.”
 ~ from “A Testament of Devotion” by Thomas R. Kelly

Practicing the Presence of God ~ Brother Lawrence wrote beautifully of using the everyday, mundane moments of life to draw near to God.  I love reading and re-reading his words and am inspired!

Holy Available: What If Holiness Is about More Than What We Don’t Do? – A beautiful book about surrending to the transforming presence of God every day of our lives.

 

Living a Holistic Life

“Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work,
and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering.”
Romans 12:1 (The Message)

 

 
“Earth is crammed with heaven,
and every common bush afire with God;
but only he who sees takes off his shoes.
The rest sit around it and pluck blackberries.”
~Elizabeth Barret Browning

Spiritual Parenting

For the Children’s Sake (reviewed here)  Amazing book relating to Christian parenting and education.

Grace-Based Parenting – An inspiring vision of parenting like God father’s us!

Poetic Parenting ~ “Instruction can only thrive in the soil of authentic relationship. Before offering instruction, consider how to touch the child gently. Think on how to frame all instructions in the context of a loving, affirming relationship.”

Leading Little Ones to Jesus

Teach Me about God – A wonderful little book with a story and related tips to help parents explain big truths to small children.  It covers topics like salvation, prayer, the Bible, The Holy Spirit, The Lord’s Supper and Baptism.  My kids ask me to read this over and over again!

Helpful Blogs

Holy Experience blog – Her beautiful writing will inspire you to draw closer to God and bring your children along!

Oh Amanda ~ I love Amanda’s heart and the wonderful hands-on ways she shares to bring big truths to our little people!

Our Family for His Glory ~ This mama of 6 is full of wonderful ideas and encouragement to share Jesus in every moment with our children!

Doorposts blog – I love their materials for character training that is biblically grounded. They post all kinds of interesting tidbits and tips on their blog.

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