Sabbath Matters

SabbathWe started a new series at Christ Community Church on the Sabbath. You can listen along on our website, but we’d love to have you join us in person sometime!

Here’s a humorous, but very serious, ‘test‘ as to whether or not you need Sabbath in your life from Pete Scazzero.

This post encourages us to think about our children’s need for rest and that, as parents, we are not powerless to the demands of society for them. It also share the important lesson that Rhodes Scholar and Basketball player Clay Christiansen learned about the Sabbath: “life is just one series of extenuating circumstances not to do what is right.”

Also, Sabbath takes practice. Take it from this chaplain!

Look forward to more posts on the Sabbath in the weeks to come. Until then, may you enter into God’s rest.

Kids and TV

Kid watching TVToday we’re sharing three links to help parents with deciding what, when, and how to shape TV time.

The first comes from the Washington Post and can be used for any technology that requires a screen: “Screen-time tips for parents.”

The Banner, a Christian magazine, offers five links to websites that will help parents review content for video games, movies, music, books and smart phone/tablet apps.

Especially in Christian circles, I hear plenty of pontificating on the evils of American entertainment, but as a parent, what I need most is realistic advice for the world I live in. Most of us are not going to burn our TVs. Most of us need a positive and practical model for how to raise “media wise” kids. That model should address not just the content of what we show our kids, but also the form it comes in and how it’s made. That’s why media literacy matters.

-Andrea Palpant Dilley

Read Andrea’s guide to media literacy for parents on Christianity Today‘s website.

Photo by Gustavo Gomez. Used with permission. Sourced by Flickr.

Got the Parenting Blues?

I forced down a sob when I said the words, ‘This parenting thing is so hard.’

Been there, felt that? Kristen shares more in, “When Parenting Knocks the Breath Out of You.”

As a single parent sometimes easily overrun by decisions and judgement calls needed to be made, I try my best to parent beyond me.

Let Guy share more of his journey as a single father with you in, “Parenting beyond Me.”

Every time I ask the kids if they want to go to church with me and they say no, it’s hard not to become upset or even angry. At them, for not wanting to go. At Jason, for making it easier for them to say no. At the Church, for not being absolutely irresistible to them. At me, for not being a better example of why we should go to services.

Alise shares about the struggles of faith and seeking when only one parent believes in Jesus in “Christian Parenting When Only One Parent is Christian.”

Finally, find some encouragement as a parent (or as a child looking to avoid being like your parents) from the genealogy of Jesus found in Matthew. It’s “An Unlikely Source of Reminder” that

Children do not always follow in the ways of their parents.

Parents don’t always guide their children into their ways.

 

This post is for parents and is meant to encourage them in various circumstances, including single parenting.

Family Devotions

We know it’s important. We also know it can be hard to make family devotions both relevant/meaningful and enjoyable.

Here’s a good place to begin: A Quick Guide to Family Worship

If you’re looking for some new material, here’s a new series on the Psalms for families with members of all ages from the Reformed tradition.

Finding yourself a little discouraged because you aren’t doing family devotions or worship? Take courage and try out some of these alternatives.

This post is for parents as they lead their families in devotions and worship.

It’s Thanksgiving, eh!

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Monday is Thanksgiving Day in Canada. More than just a day off of work or school, it’s a holiday that reminds us of what motivates everything in our lives: thankfulness to God.

But the holidays aren’t always easy– juggling in-laws and schedules, strained family relationships, steering clear of hot-button issues… Russell has some ideas on dealing with family tensions at the holidays in a godly manner.

Does listing the things you are thankful for make you feel childish? Does thanking God for rainbows and ice cream seem too trivial? Jean shares how she worked through this issue to see the blessing of counting your blessings, naming them one by one… Read more in: “Thanksgiving: it’s not trivial.”

Finally, Ann shares 15 ideas for parents to encourage and teach thankfulness to their kids.

Back to School

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September’s here, and for many of us, that means a return to the classroom for some of the ones we love.

Michael shares the prayer he wrote after dropping his kids off for their first day of school.

Christopher’s piece on peer pressure is helpful for parents of teens as well as adults in the workforce as he reflects on how some lessons need to keep being learned. We aren’t so different from our kids after all…

Parents and college students alike may find the College Transition Initiative helpful. The site desires to provide resources that prepare “Christian students and parents to bring Glory to God during some of the most formative years of a young person’s life.” Topics range from social activities to college debt to ways to grow in faith.

This post is for parents and older teens/young adults and provides resources and stories that deal with the transition back to school.

Photo by Jens Rost. Used with permission. Sourced by Flickr.

School isn’t just Prep Work

It’s easy to fall into the trap of preparing for the next stage of life. But, as Maureen Herrig challenges us, there’s much to learn and to enjoy in the moment. As parents, you can ask different kinds of questions at the dinner table.

Instead of just asking about where to go to college, ask what do you love to do?
Instead of just asking what grade they got on a test, ask did you learn something that amazed you today?
Read the post and the rest of the questions on ThinkChristian.

 

This post is intended for parents of teenagers and children in school. It is meant to encourage a different kind of attitude about school and learning.