New School Year!

New School Year!

The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel: for gaining wisdom and instruction; for understanding words of insight; for receiving instruction in prudent behavior, doing what is right and just and fair; for giving prudence to those who are simple, knowledge and discretion to the young–let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance–for understanding proverbs and parables, the sayings and riddles of the wise. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction. Proverbs 1:1-7 NIV

Get wisdom, get understanding; do not forget my words or turn away from them. Do not forsake wisdom and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you. The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding. Cherish her, and she will exalt you; embrace her, and she will honor you. 4:5-8 NIV

Listen, my son, accept what I say, and the years of your life will be many. I instruct you in the way of wisdom and lead you along straight paths. When you walk, your steps will not be hampered; when you run, you will not stumble. Hold on to instruction, do not let it go; guard it well, for it is your life. Do not set foot on the path of the wicked or walk in the way of evildoers. Avoid it, do not travel on it; turn from it and go on your way. For they cannot rest until they do evil; they are robbed of sleep till they make someone stumble. 4:10-16 NIV

Though there are those in the WH administration who do not think an education is important, those of us who know The Lord, know wisdom and knowledge go hand-in-hand and we should never take access to a quality education for granted.

So, on this first day of a new school year–I’m praying for the students who are entering schools all over the place. I know that some schools (not in Michigan) started weeks ago, but this is the first day for many of our public schools and having access to education through public schools is important.

Of course, Betsy DeVos will never understand that and neither will trump supporters since they think getting an education makes a person “an elitist,” and therefore they are happy to stay ignorant and trump is also happy for them to say ignorant; he can continue to dupe them into believing anything he says. I guess they don’t realize he has a Bachelor’s degree, but then again, the way he talks and writes, no one would believe that anyway.

I’m straying from what I need to say: to the students who are crossing that threshold of your school building–have a wonderful first day and a great exploration throughout the school year. Stay respectful and inclined to learning.

This is a particular emotional day for me since my grandson is beginning his last year of high school–at 15 years-old and will soon be driving (in a few days) on his own. Time flies and next year, he’ll begin his first day of college.

I pray that every student, in every school, will clear their minds of old lazy habits and prepare to receive wisdom and instruction from every teacher in every classroom; by the end of the school year, all will be more knowledgeable about every subject taken than when they were on the first day.

For those 17 years-old and older–pay attention in your history and government classes so you will vote wisely and consider country over political party agendas.

Have a safe and wonderful day!

circumstances

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Fighting The Good Fight!

Fighting The Good Fight!

Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses. I Timothy 6:9-12 NIV

How do we measure progress when we’re doing something for the first time? What standard becomes our benchmark? We’re still determining our direction with our boot camp.

What we didn’t anticipate is a change in our scheduling that makes this attempt almost futile. I say, almost because I’m not one who gives up easily at the first sign of adversity. Unexpected events have taken me away from home during the crucial hours of our scheduling and that has thrown everything off course. But still we muddle forward. Leaving written instructions for someone to follow without being in their presence is not the same as being right there.

While we’re learning how to adapt our methodology and accomplish our goal, I get a better glimpse of how God views us. Though He has set out the guidelines for us to follow in His Word, if we are not totally cognizant of His presence–at all times, we veer off track.

This then, is how we fight the good fight of faith. We must remember at all times, He is a very present help in our midst and we must look to Him for direction in all things. ALL things–every little thing–and never take Him for granted because He knows when we’re faltering in our own wisdom and when we allow Him to guide us–we cannot go wrong.

So, instead of relying upon my memory for the first breakfast of this boot camp, I should have consulted Him–who would have reminded me to look it up and all ingredients would have been included. Had I consulted Him about the week of our plans, He would have provided me with insight as to what else would occur in our lives.

What to do, what to do! Adjust–all plans and determine if there is a need for continuation for another week or even for the next month–one day at a time. I’m waiting to hear but I will continue to provide the necessary building blocks that will ensure my grandson will thrive and be able to resist the temptations that are bound to be put before him.

Lord, though we know to seek Your wisdom in all things, sometimes we think we can handle the minor details without You. Thank You for bringing us back to the realization that You are our focus and without You, involved in all things, we can do nothing. Thank You for reviving us and strengthening to continue the good fight–every day!

Expecting From The Lord!

Expecting From The Lord!

Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, “Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.” And God granted his request. I Chronicles 4:10 NIV

So, the first day of boot camp didn’t quite turn out the way we wanted it to work.

The breakfast I had planned was a miserable fail (baked omelette). Apparently, I forgot something needed in the recipe and we ended up with cheesy egg toast.

Lunch was chicken salad, which for me was enhanced by using the cheesy egg toast for an open-faced sandwich.

Dinner–well, I have no idea since I didn’t eat dinner and left the others to their own devices.  We’ll get better as we go along–I hope.

A rocky start, but most of what we wanted to accomplish for day one–achieved.

Grandson is reading and analyzing specific passages of scriptures, relating them to daily living and other literature designed to open his eyes and open dialogue with us.

More next time–keep praying!

Lord, keep us focused on our task and always dependent upon You and enlarge our understanding of how to move forward in such a way that not only will our grandson learn a valuable lesson, but we will, too.

 

This Is It!

This Is It!

It is coming! It will surely take place, declares the Sovereign LORD. This is the day I have spoken of. Ezekiel 39:8 NIV

For the next few days, this blog will hit a little closer to home. We’re conducting a boot camp (of sorts) to teach my grandson a lesson in “fortitude” and staying the course of being right even in the wrong places with the wrong people.

We have a schedule beginning from 6:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. detailing what we’re doing each hour or block of time set out. He won’t have any free time until 4:00 p.m. and then we enter into our evening schedule of events until time for him to go to be 10:00 p.m.

When we love our children or grandchildren, sometimes we have to take “extreme” measures to get that message across to them in order to help them develop the skills and tools they’re going to need to survive–teenage years, young adulthood into mature adulthood.

So, we including exercises to build mental fortitude, physical fortitude, emotional fortitude and spiritual fortitude. I’m sure I’ll have to say in the coming days about what worked, how it worked and what adjustments we needed to make to ensure the outcome we expect.

We’re trying to help him develop critical thinking skills and how to react to adverse situations that could cost him his life.

Pray for us while we take this unknown journey–striving to reach the finish line of excellence so he’ll be ready for The Master’s use!

This is the day!

Avoiding The Pitfalls!

Avoiding The Pitfalls!

Do not envy the wicked, do not desire their company;for their hearts plot violence, and their lips talk about making trouble. By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established; through knowledge its rooms are filled with rare and beautiful treasures. The wise prevail through great power, and those who have knowledge muster their strength. Surely you need guidance to wage war, and victory is won through many advisers. Wisdom is too high for fools; in the assembly at the gate they must not open their mouths. Proverbs 24:1-7 NIV

There are some snares and pitfalls we can avoid in life, IF we simply take the time to think about what we do–BEFORE we do it. This is not a one-time lesson in life, but an on-going life lesson we must learn, if we are to survive to share our testimonies of how we overcame.

For teenagers–the path to adulthood is an obstacle course–at every turn, they must watch for the snares and pitfalls that are waiting to keep them from enjoying success as an adult. Those snares and pitfalls come in the form of “wrong” friends and giving into the influence that peers force upon others–if they want to be “cool.”

Being “cool” is not always the best route to take to navigate high school or in some cases–middle school. For the peer pressure comes earlier and earlier and even in some elementary schools–kids are pressured to join in or be square.

I’ve been there, but I was considered square because I wasn’t interested in doing anything that could get me in trouble with my mother. “Back in the day” as some would say, at 14 years-old, I had the responsibility of taking care of my brothers and sister after school. It was my responsibility to make sure dinner was cooked (meat, vegetables and a starch), everyone ate, and kitchen cleaned before my mother got home from work. When things went wrong at home and she wasn’t there, I handled it–from the ninth–through eleventh grades–I ran the house. My mother worked two jobs to support us and even though she wasn’t around much, she had instilled a fear in us that made sure we didn’t get into trouble. But then, I was raised in a community of less than 200 people and everyone knew everyone’s business, so there was little chance of getting away with anything.

That’s not the case today. Kids have greater obstacles to withstand if they’re strong enough and wise enough to stand up to their peers. The experimentation with drugs and sex can be overwhelming and the temptation to great to resist, but we must teach them how and show them by example–how to win in life. It’s not easy, but it is necessary. The first obstacle we must teach them to overcome is how to survive in a drug-culture in the schools. Drugs are prevalent everywhere–and it doesn’t matter if it is an affluent or an impoverished community–the more access to money kids have, the greater the likelihood that kids will move from the cheap drugs to the more expensive ones.  But illegal drugs–are bad news–for everyone and we see the results from the crime in the streets, to the overdoses in the hospitals.

So, while we’re praying for them to successfully navigate the murky waters of temptation, we must also teach–and re-teach  them how to be confident enough in who God has called them to be, that they can resist the temptation of the evil set before them, and not be concerned about what others think.

Lord, be merciful unto us as leaders in churches, parents, and school administrators and give us wisdom–abundantly–so we can help our children live and succeed as You would have them to do.

About The Children’s Children!

About The Children’s Children!

A good person leaves an inheritance for their children’s children, but a sinner’s wealth is stored up for the righteous. Whoever spares the rod hates their children, but the one who loves their children is careful to discipline them. Proverbs 13:22,24 NIV

God–in His infinite Wisdom–addressed every situation we would encounter in life–being a parent and a grandparent. This is why we should–not just read The Word, but study it so living life won’t frustrate us.

I’m veering a little today to discuss parenting, children and grandchildren–seeking to reflect upon what I’ve done and what I should do. I’m in one of those unique situations in which I’m a grandparent, raising my grandson–doing the “grand parenting” thing so many of us do.

First of all, the one thing that most parents discover–if they have more than one child–is that parenting is a special task–that eludes instructions–from all, but God. And when a parent doesn’t have a relationship with God, they miss the mark and parent by trial and error. What most realize is that no two children (not even twins, triplets, or more) are exactly alike. They develop their own personalities and defy any logic to make them “fit” any mold. So, parenting with its many obstacles becomes a great training ground for many of us–learning things we never thought we’d have to do.

And if we thought parenting was fun–grand parenting–is a riot! Not only do we discover what we missed while parenting, we get to complete the cycle all over again–without the benefit of spoiling the kid and then sending them home. Now–if the grandchild is living with us–we have to discipline as well as spoil. It’s truly a balancing act–especially going through the teenage cycle, again.

The bottom line–in this short reflection–is that raising a grandchild can be a blessing or a nightmare. It is a blessing when the child in question understands the magnitude of the role the grand parent is in and a nightmare when they don’t. At this point in time–I’m trying to find a middle ground so I can continue to enjoy being a grandmother and yet raise a responsible, respectful young man–who can stay focused on goals to make sure his life is worthwhile.

Here’s what I’ve discovered–we must–at all costs–raise children as God has said–no matter how much we love them, we must stand firm in our resolve when we mete out discipline and love ’em at the same time. The benefit for us–a chance to mold a child’s future–again. The benefit for them–an opportunity to receive the inheritance many of us have planned for our children’s children.

Of course–if the grandchild chooses not to be the responsible, respectful young person God desires for us to have in our presence, then the child gets the reward they deserve–the consequences of their behavior.

Loving living this life to the fullest–and still learning what I almost learned fifty years ago–praying my way through to its end.

 

Band Camp!

This remarkably small band (20 members) consistently earns Division 1 rankings for their half-time field performances. One of the reasons they are so remarkable is because of the intense training and practice they get at band camp every summer.

Unfortunately, some of our band families are not able to financially support an eligible student’s participation and so we find ourselves in a predicament where we are seeking the help of the public. Would you consider a $10 donation to help keep our marching band marching?

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Thank you for considering this tax deductible donation for our students. https://www.gofundme.com/hwpioneers