10 ways to help your kids choose good role models

10 ways good role models

When I was a teenager, I had a variety of posters on the walls of the room I shared with my sister. Rock stars and movie stars lined most of the walls, save the wall on which my sister had hung her baby animals poster. I eyed that piece of prime wall real estate often, trying to coax her into letting us have something less juvenile.

While pictures of celebrities are not bad in and of themselves, we need to think about what these people stand for and why we emulate them. I cringe, not only at my selfishness toward my sister’s one wall poster, but also when I think of the people on my walls – those I looked up to and wanted to emulate.

In hindsight, they are not the type of people I would have wanted to grow up to be like. Actually, they were the exact opposite.

I am astounded sometimes to see what celebrities kids and teens choose for their role models. Some are drug users, authority bashers, anti-American, anti-God people who place a high emphasis on seeing what they can get away with. Not what we would want our own children to aspire to become.

When we think of role models, they can be from a variety of scenarios: celebrities, historical figures, family, friends, or people in the community. They can be people we have never met or they can be those with whom we have a relationship. They can still be alive or they could have passed on years ago.

So, how can we help our kids choose good role models?

Talk over the values and morals that your family embraces. Encourage honest and open dialogue about the principles and behavior that are important character traits.

Be on the lookout for role models. Look to the Bible, your extended family, church, and among close friends for suggestions. If your son or daughter could grow up to be just like someone they know/like, who would that be?

Reinforce the importance of character.

Ask your child who they admire. Ask what traits draw them to that person as a role model.

Consider whether you are a good role model for your child. Ask any parent and they will tell you the shock of the first time they realized their child had “taken on” one of their bad traits. None of us are perfect. Far from it. But with God’s grace and help, we can model godly behavior for our children.

mom and daughter 2

Ponder the following criteria for helping your child choose good role models:

Do they have a heart for God? Do they live a Godly life rather than just saying they are a Christian? There are a lot of people who are a Christian in name only. They say one thing, and do quite the other. One thing I have noticed, particularly in sports figures, is they will declare the name of Jesus, but they won’t take a stand for Him and/or for what is right.

Do they have integrity? Have they been caught “doing the right thing”?

How do they treat the less fortunate? Especially when it is of no benefit to them?

How do they treat others when they think no one is watching?

Are they generous with their time and resources?

photo-of-woman-teaching-his-son-while-smiling-4145355 (2)

Our kids aren’t likely thinking about character when they choose role models. They are more often thinking about the music artist whose music they enjoy listening to, the movie star who has cute clothes and hair, or the classmate who seems to have everything. There’s a real possibility they could be resistant to our suggesting alternative role models to the one(s) they have chosen.

But with our patient help and God’s guidance, they can navigate the wide range of choices in today’s society and choose a role model that will influence their lives for the better.

 

Other posts you may enjoy:

58 fun activities for kids of all ages

7 Ways to Encourage Your Children

5 ways to make your child feel loved

5 ways to be your “sweet self”

the importance of influence

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

every life is valuable

every life

In recent days, I have been deeply saddened by the turn of events in our country.

Those who know me well know that I am a Christian, a conservative who strongly supports religious freedom, the Second Amendment, and the value of life. I am the granddaughter of a former police officer and the relative of numerous veterans who fought for our country. What happened to George Floyd is awful and the officers responsible should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. But the horrific and violent protests will not bring him back.

As disturbing as Floyd’s death was, we as a society need to realize there cannot be a double standard on life’s value. Every life is valuable. Every. Single. One. Including:

The 245 million Christians who are persecuted every year (and 4,136 killed every year for their faith).

The 40 million babies who are aborted each year.

The approximately 4.8 million women and children who are sex-trafficked each year.

Want to know whose lives are important? The elderly, the young, the disabled, the blind, deaf, mentally ill, chubby, slim, couch potatoes, athletic people, the ugly, the attractive, the poor, the rich, the homeless, police officers, military personnel, stay-at-home-moms, white collar, blue collar, and everyone in between.

All life is valuable. All shades of life (and yes, I have friends in every shade) are valuable. Why? Because all life is precious to God. Priceless to a Creator who made us in His own image. Who gave His Son for us.

There is no life that is more valuable than any other.

all live is valuable

 

11 verses about God’s unfailing love

God's unfailing love

Thank you for joining me as we continue journeying through The Scripture Series and diving into the Bible this week to look at verses that detail God’s unfailing love.

We’ve all been hurt by someone we care about, whether that be a friend, relative, or fellow believer. The sting of betrayal is painful and not something that is easily overcome.

But there is One who will never betray us. He will never walk away from us when times get tough. He will never betray our confidence, share our most precious secrets, give up on us, spread gossip about us, or leave us for someone “better”. This is good news in a fickle world where most of us are just one step away from “offending” someone and losing their friendship.

God’s unfailing love can be difficult to grasp. Yet His love is boundless, steadfast, and inexhaustible. It is eternal. And as Romans 8:38-39 tells us, nothing (emphasis on that word!) can separate us from His love. Nothing. Nada.

Nothing we can ever do, or will ever do, can stop Him from loving us. He is forgiving, patient, and merciful. As His children, we are cherished, valued, and precious. So precious, in fact, that He paid a high price for us – the death of His Son, Jesus Christ for our sins. May we never take such a costly gift for granted.

Be blessed by the fact that God’s love is faithful and enduring.

Romans 8 38-39

I am convinced that nothing will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. ~ Romans 8:38-39

1 Chronicles 16 34

Give thanks to the Lord for he is good; his love endures forever. ~ 1 Chronicles 16:34

John 15 13

Greater love has no one than this: to lay down ones life for one’s friends. ~ John 15:13

Psalm 86 15

But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness. ~ Psalm 86:15

Galatians 2 20

I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. ~ Galatians 2:20

Romans 5 8

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this. While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. ~ Romans 5:8

John 10 11

I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. ~ John 10:11

Romans 5 5

And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. ~ Romans 5:5

John 3 16

For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. ~ John 3:161 John 3 1See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God. ~ 1 John 3:11 John 4 10This is love; not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. ~ 1 John 4:10

 

unfailing love verses

 

Other blog posts you may enjoy:

scriptural antidotes for fear

10 Bible verses to start off your day

the importance of mentorship

outside-the-box homeschool ideas

the importance of perseverance

 

 

scriptural antidotes for fear

antedotes for fear

Fear. A common struggle for many people. Dictionary.com defines it as a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, pain, etc., whether the threat is real or imagined; the feeling or condition of being afraid.

We, as Believers, know from God’s Word that we can trust, rather than fear. God knew, however, that His precious children would struggle with this at times. I read somewhere that “fear not” is mentioned in the Bible at least 365 times.

I love that God knew we would worry. That He knew we would fear. That He knew we would need an antidote for angst, panic, and anxiety. Indeed, there is much to fear in today’s crazy world.

Yet, we know that God loves us so much that He sent His Son for us, that we are invaluable to Him, and that He goes before us in those stressful situations. In Matthew 10:31, He talks of us being more valuable than the sparrows, whom He cares and provides for.

The next time fear comes to knock on your door, take some time to dive into God’s Word and let these verses comfort your soul.

Psalm 9 10And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you. ~ Psalm 9:10

 

Isaiah 41 10So do not fear, for I am with you…for I am your God. ~ Isaiah 41:10

 

Psalm 34 4I sought the Lord, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears. ~ Psalm 34:4

 

Philippians 4 7And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. ~ Philippians 4:7

 

Psalm 16 8I have set the Lord always before me; because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken. ~ Psalm 16:8

 

JOhn 14 17Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. ~ John 14:27

 

Isaiah 41 13For I, the Lord your God, hold your right hand; it is I who say to you, “Fear not, I am the one who helps you.” ~ Isaiah 41:13

 

Psalm 56 3When I am afraid, I put my trust in You. ~ Psalm 56:3

 

Isaiah 26 3

You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast because they trust in You. ~ Isaiah 26:3

 

Psalm 23 4Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. ~ Psalm 23:4

 

1 John 4 18There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. ~ 1 John 4:18

 

Psalm 27 1The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? ~ Psalm 27:1

 

Isaiah 12 2aSurely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. ~ Isaiah 12:2A

 

Matthew 6 34Therefore, do not be anxious about tomorrow for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. ~ Matthew 6:34

 

Psalm 46 1God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. ~ Psalm 46:1

 

 

Fear Verses real

 

Other posts you may enjoy:

10 Bible verses to start off your day

a season of hope

20 upbeat songs to encourage you

Where is your focus? Finding peace of mind in a world of negativity

the great toilet paper caper

the importance of authenticity

the importance of mentorship

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10 Bible verses to start off your day

10 verses morning

I am super excited to be starting a new series on my blog called The Scripture Series. I’ll be taking a journey through God’s Word and sharing Bible verses on a variety of topics.

Our first in the series is 10 Bible verses to start off your day. Those first precious moments in the morning that we spend with the Lord, wrapped in His embrace as we pray about the day and turn it over to Him, set the stage for the next 24 hours.

Thank you for joining me for this new series. Be blessed!

 

Psalm 118 24

This is the day the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it. ~ Psalm 118:24

 

Lamentations 3_22-23

His mercies are new every morning. ~ Lamentations 3:22-23

 

Philippians 4 13

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. ~ Philippians 4:13

 

Romans 8 31bIf God is for us, who can be against us? ~ Romans 8:31b

 

2 TimothyFor God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and love and self-control. ~ 2 Timothy 1:7

 

 

Ephesians 6 11

Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. ~ Ephesians 6:11

 

Psalm 19 14

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer. ~ Psalm 19:14

 

James 1 5

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given to him. ~ James 1:5

 

Matthew 11 28

Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. ~ Matthew 11:28

 

Psalm 143 8

Let me hear in the morning of your steadfast love, for in you I trust. Make me know the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul. ~ Psalm 143:8

 

10 morning verses summary

 

 

Other posts you may enjoy:

5 ways to start your day off right

7 ways to inspire others

the importance of gratitude

13 ways to help someone going through a difficult time

12 verses to encourage the burdened heart

 

motherly morsels of wisdom

motherly morsels of wisdom

Moms. A rich source of wisdom passed on for generations.

In celebration of Mother’s Day and as a tribute to moms everywhere, I asked friends across the nation and beyond what was the most important thing they learned from their mom. Here’s what they had to say:

Perseverance, faith, and compassion. ~ Madi A.

My mom taught me that happiness is not how much you have but how much you enjoy what you have. She always says that. ~ Marianne F.

To be kind. ~ Maria F.

Respect, compassion, dedication. ~ Ross W.

To keep Jesus first, cherish family, serve others and never give up hope when things get tough. ~ Margaret S.

The Salvation Message/ to love the Lord. ~ Holly C.

To love like Jesus. To speak kind words. To live by faith. ~ Tammy S.

My mom left me with my grandparents when I was 6 months old & my grandma and aunt wouldn’t let her take me back. Everything I have learned about unconditional love and faith, from a maternal source, I learned from my spiritual mom. She’s been there for me since i was 13, praying for me, taking me to church, reminding me to keep my focus on God, and proving that some people can be trusted not to abandon you. I wouldn’t be who I am without her. ~ Jodi H.

To look to God in hardships… ~ Holly Anne H.

We do not hate, hate is a very strong word. We may not like how someone is or what they did, but we do not hate…….my momma was an amazing woman…..we didn’t have much growing up but we had lots of love and laughter. ~Julie B.

To cherish your family…Just lost my mom 3 weeks ago and she always cherished Family! She was a gracious lady. ~ Tammy J.

My mom told me, “Ninety percent of your unhappiness in life will come from comparing yourself to other people. Just don’t do it.” So far she’s been right. ~ Sam H.

Unconditional love and charity. She would give you the shirt off her back if you truly needed it. ~ Natalie J.

To always remain positive no matter what. ~ John C.

Courage and humor in the face of loss of loved ones, her own severe arthritis, three kinds of cancer, heart problems, dementia. ~ Kathy B.

Kindness, diligence, work ethic, love for my kiddos—because of her love for me and my bro’s, my mom is AMAZING!!! ~ Heather K.

Rudyard Kipling

I’m thankful for my own mom, who taught me the value of hard work. She worked harder than anyone I’ve ever known in difficult labor-type jobs: cleaning businesses and wallpapering homes, so she could stay home with us and help provide income at the same time.

But my mom taught me so much more than work ethic. She taught me to serve others from the time my siblings and I were little, we “adopted” grandparents and visited them, provided for their needs, and learned to treasure them.

But my mom taught me even more than serving others. She taught me compassion and to put others above myself. She taught me how to nurture and care for those who are ailing. She also taught me to be creative and follow my dreams.

But my mom taught me more than that. Now confined to a wheelchair with serious chronic illnesses, my mom has taught me the value of faith and how to rely on God in all circumstances. To keep my eyes on Jesus, even when it’s the hardest (and last) thing you feel you can do. To still serve others in the midst of struggling with her own hardships. To persevere and to never give up. To love others even if that love is never returned.

Moms – you do make an impact on, not just your child(ren), but also future generations. You do this by the way you live, the words you say, and the actions you show day after day.

To all you moms, Happy Mother’s Day. May the Lord bless you for being shining examples.

Mom's motherly morsels

 

 

 

Check out these other posts about and/or for moms:

 

 

 

the struggle is real

struggle is real

Flying down the dirt roads on my parents’ property on our Honda Odyssey go-kart are some of my favorite childhood memories.

There was a time in the field when I landed in a ditch. As hard as I would try, I couldn’t quite get the go-kart out of the ditch without flipping it. I had the knowledge of how to do it, but I just couldn’t achieve that goal. So there I sat, upside down, protected by the roll cage and seat belt, as I struggled to remove the go-kart from the ditch.

While not having anything in common with those fun times on the Honda Odyssey, yesterday, I faced another real struggle.

Having broken a tooth, I sat in the dentist chair for an emergency dental appointment. Sure, I had prayed myself up, asked my family to do the same, and had spent time with the Lord that morning, resting in His unfailing peace.

I reached up and placed my earbud in one ear and adjusted the volume. I needed to be able to hear both my playlist on my phone and the dentist. The songs from some of my favorite Christian artists flooded into my mind.

Yet, as they numbed me up and the dentist arrived with the needle that would inject the anesthetic into my gums, fear and trepidation rose within me.

dentist

If you guessed that I am not fond of needles, you are correct. I join 50 million other people who share the fear of needles.

Doesn’t make it any easier that I am in good company.

This isn’t my first rodeo when it comes to dental work or needles. I’ve been going to the dentist since I was four years old. I’ve had orthodontic work, wisdom teeth removal, and a gum graft. I’ve had my appendix removed and spent a large part of my first pregnancy connected to IVs during a long stint in the hospital with hyperemesis gravidarum and pneumonia. Each year, I have a wellness blood draw with my annual physical. I’ve never put off a medical procedure because of my fear of needles.

But the struggle is real.

Scripture verses flooded my mind as the needle drew closer. Verses about fear, worry, anxiety, God’s comfort, His refuge, and the list goes on.

Psalm 46 1

Verses I know by heart. Verses I have drawn upon many times in my life for comfort.

So why then was I still anxious about that needle? Why was a grown woman struggling with something some would deem minor?

My heart and my mind were in agreement. God would get me through this. I was not alone. He was there with me. He went before me, would never let me go. He created the entire world and everything in it. I knew needles were not a big deal for Him. And yet, I still struggled.

Experts say that everyone has a fear and/or phobia. Many people have more than one (snakes, heights, public speaking, spiders anyone?) Still, I hate the thought of being fearful of an inanimate object. I hate the thought of having to share with the dentist and her team members that taking a needle to the mouth is a hugely stressful event for me.

The procedure was over in an hour and a half. Drowsy, loopy, and starting to feel the pain from the procedure, I staggered out of the room and was driven home by my teenage daughter.

I’d made it through.

In three weeks, I go back for round two, again with another needle (or two). Someday, hopefully long before I enter into eternity, I hope to no longer get ramped up with anxiety at the mere thought of a needle.

But even if I continue to have this fear the remainder of my life, I know one thing is certain. While God’s will may not be that I am fearless, it is His promise that He is with me no matter how many times I have to deal with fears (or anything else).

That His daughter was struggling with the needle at the dentist’s office mattered to Him. I mattered to Him. My seemingly “little” problem in the scope of all of the huge problems in today’s world mattered to my Lord and Savior.

Sometimes struggles are real. Our mind and heart know one thing, but our human selves do not cooperate. During these struggles, God grows us. While we wish He could do it in a less anxiety-provoking and terrifying way, we can rest in the knowledge that He is always with us and everything is in His control.

Psalm 56 3

 

Movie Monday: Free Burma Rangers

free burma rangers

I had never heard of this movie or David Eubank and his family until my sister sent me the link to stream this movie.

Within the first few minutes of viewing Free Burma Rangers, I knew this was going to be a documentary that would stick with me long after the credits rolled.

David Eubank, his wife Karen, and their children serve the Lord in their ministry known as Free Burma Rangers. They go to war-torn countries and train and assist those oppressed by evil armies bent on their destruction. They work in both Burma and Iraq, and have recently expanded into Syria.

David Eubank, the son of missionaries, says at the beginning of the movie that he always felt more like a soldier than a missionary. God has used him mightily as both. With extensive military training and an even stronger faith, David, his family, and a team of other soldiers for Christ have rescued countless people by risking their own lives.

They also reach people for Jesus while tending to the people’s most basic needs.

The movie is gritty at times, showing the true reality of evil bent on taking the lives of the innocent. There are stories of parents losing their children in horrific ways and high casualties. As such, this movie would not be suitable for anyone younger than a much-older teen to adult.

However, while hard to watch in some places – a little girl hiding under her deceased mom’s scarf while surrounded by other dead people for instance – it is well worth the watch. It is gripping and yet tender. David and Karen have a strong faith and portray it authentically and honestly. They lay down their lives for others – the perfect example of what Jesus did for us.

Free Burma Rangers challenges the viewer to look beyond themselves and to seek the Lord’s guidance on how He might lead them to do His work. Sometimes God’s plans aren’t what we might expect, but they are always the right plans. And as David Eubank has come to discover during countless dangerous missions, God gives courage and protection. He makes a way when the way seems impossible.

I would highly recommend Free Burma Rangers. It is excellent in every way and a movie that not only tugs at the heartstrings, but changes us and makes us want to do more for the Kingdom.

For more movie suggestions, please check out my Mom Approved Movies Listing.

are you showing the difference?

showing the difference

My teenage daughters and I were recently discussing how it seems to be getting more difficult to differentiate between a believer and an unbeliever. Sure, we as followers of Christ make mistakes, and by God’s merciful grace, are forgiven.

We pray for His guidance and direction and that we will learn from that mistake and grow in Him. We struggle from day-to-day to live for Him. To love Him with all our hearts, souls, and minds, to love our neighbors, pray for our enemies, make good choices, and reach a lost world for Jesus Christ.

No one, not even a longtime Christian, is even close to being perfect. We will never achieve perfection in this world.

But what about those who profess to be a Christian, but aren’t living for Him and really have no desire to do so? What about the very real possibility that we, as those who profess belief in Christ, are looking oddly similar to the world – the very world we are to be set apart from?

Consider these commonly seen actions in our world today:

Climbing the ladder/selfish ambition. Do anything to get to the top, no matter who is stepped on or shoved aside in the process

Backbiting/backstabbing. If someone dislikes us, disagrees with us, has a difference of opinion, then it is perfectly acceptable to backbite, backstab, accuse, and do what you can to destroy their reputation.

The “importance” of sharing information. Why not share what you know about people – or what you think you know – even if it’s not true?

Wealth. He or she who has the most money should for sure be the most popular. After all, the poorer person can’t donate money to your cause like the wealthy one can. An added bonus? They can buy you things. Befriend those who profit you the most.

Looks are critical. Because our world values youth, thinness, and nice clothes, those who are a little plump, a little wrinkled, a little old, or a little bit ugly really aren’t as important.

Focus on self. Really, when it all comes down to it, is there any room left in the mirror for anyone but ourselves?

Popularity. He or she who is most popular wins. Why side with an “underdog” if it doesn’t further our own agenda?

Christianity is a crutch. Really, who needs to believe in an old book with old verses and stories in it when we can believe what our modern writers/philosophers say?

Lie to get what you want. Honesty is so overrated.

Win at all costs. If you need to pick a fight, go ahead. Prove you’re right.

Never forgive. What they did was wrong and they will pay!

Sadly, the above traits are not limited to some secular people. And by some, I mean that I have many unbelieving friends who are kind, loving, compassionate, and generous  who don’t subscribe to the above list. Far too often, unbelievers who don’t know the hope found in Jesus Christ behave better than Christians.

However, I also know some believers who are manipulative, hateful, critical gossipers.

Friends, this should not be so.

Contrast the following to the above:

Taking the low rung on the  ladder and be happy for others when they succeed.

Letting our words build others up, rather than tearing them down (Ephesians 4:29).

Avoiding gossip as it is the surest way to hurt someone.

Remembering we can’t serve two masters. We will either love God or money. (Matthew 6:24).

Focusing on what is on the inside. In First Samuel 16:7b, we learn that while man looks at the outward appearance, the Lord looks at the heart.

1 Samuel 16 7 (2)

Putting others as more important than ourselves.

Rooting for the underdog. In the Bible, there are several underdogs God uses including David, Gideon, and Moses.

Christianity is not a crutch. It is the Truth.

God values honesty.

Strife and discord are among the things the Lord hates.

Jesus forgave us for all of the times we sin (which are many!)

Revenge is God’s, not ours.

Quite the difference when we compare list to list. Yet, as I write this, many Christians are struggling with being hurt by fellow believers. Other believers may be struggling with they themselves making poor choices that hurt others.

Let’s give unbelievers a reason to want to know Christ. Let’s not blend in with the world and be like them, but let’s rather be set apart for Him. Let there be a difference between us and our unbelieving neighbor.

We must show – and be- the difference to a dying world.

arrested for faith

 

 

 

 

 

 

the importance of perseverance

the importance of perseverance (2).png

Life is not easy. It’s full of challenges, and when we face those challenges, we have a choice. Do we stick with it and persevere? Or do we give up?

My mom texted me yesterday with the results from her recent MRI. On top of severe osteoporosis, fibromyalgia, scleroderma, a herniated disc in her back, and celiac disease, they also discovered she has a radial capitellum capsular edema and a posterolateral  capsular synovial cyst.

All fancy medical terms that contribute to the intense chronic pain she lives with on a daily basis.

She was recently confined to a wheelchair.

In other words, the pain and debilitating illness she now faces are nearly unbearable.

Some days it feels like too much.

It is a lot for her to persevere in these times of chronic pain, uncertainty, and a rapidly deteriorating health.

Hard for her husband, children, and grandchildren to watch as well.

But she perseveres. And no, neither she nor I will tell you that it’s easy or that she doesn’t struggle at times.

Chronic illness.

The Covid-19 virus that has changed life as we know it.

A difficult boss.

A challenging relative.

The effort to lose weight for health reasons.

The challenge to bring up your grades.

Working two jobs to afford basic necessities for your family.

Being a caregiver.

Trying to move on after a death or divorce.

Loneliness

perseverance clip

These can all bring about difficult life situations where it’s easy to give up and give in.

The Apostle Paul went through many trials and hardships and persevered for the Gospel. Missionaries today persist in bringing the Truth to people who may never otherwise hear the Good News of eternal life through Jesus Christ.

Even in families, friendships, and neighborhoods, faithful believers hope to plant seeds. Pastors preach to both believers and unbelievers each Sunday.

Or even the perseverance in raising our child(ren) for Christ in an increasingly sinful and hostile world. Yet, when we continue to instill in our children the importance of a relationship with God, we will someday reap the rewards.

 

Galatians 6 9

How do we persevere and why is it important that we do?

By keeping our eyes on Jesus. The second we take our eyes off of Him, as Peter did in Matthew 14:30-31, we sink.

Realizing that He knows the “big picture.” How it starts, the middle, and the ending. Remember that we see the tiny hand-held TV screen of life, while God sees an enormous big-screen TV. Or to look at it a different way, we see one word in an entire book, while He sees the entire book – every word, sentence, paragraph, and chapter.

Remembering that even in times of hardship, He loves us and will never leave us.

Hebrews 13 5.jpg

Knowing that He is a great listener…and never sleeps. His “line” is open 24/7/365.

Being assured that He’s got this and was not caught off guard.

Spending time in constant prayer, giving thanks for all He has done, seeking His will for your life, and laying down prayer requests are tantamount to a close relationship with Him.

1 Thessalonians 5 17.jpg

Reading God’s Word and learning about the faithful ones of the Bible who persevered. To know we are not alone in our difficulties gives us hope and courage.

Keep going forward…even if you feel like you’re constantly going backwards. 

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Making sure you have a good support system. This can be a loving spouse and children, caring friends, and a faithful church body.

Being encouraged by listening to uplifting Christian music. What we fill our minds with impacts us, whether positively or negatively.

Facing each day one step at a time. Set small and realistic goals.

Remember that He is with us each step of the way. We never have to “do life” alone.

Life is not easy. Everyone has a struggle, or multiple struggles, that they face on a daily or ongoing basis. But with faith in God and perseverance, we can face our hardships head-on and emerge victorious.