We Must Be in the Last Days!

The apostle Paul told us that in the last days men will be lovers of themselves more than lovers of God.  This is obvious.  Go to any town all across the US, and you will see more cars at the mall or in the parking lot of Walmart, than at most of your local churches combined.  I can understand the person who does not have faith in God, because he can’t see Him with his eyes or touch Him with his hands, who is more concerned with loving himself than loving God.  But, I can’t understand the parent who loves himself or herself more than his/her children. 

Recently, I witnessed a situation where a teenager was in trouble for a sexual crime against another younger child.  The teen got in trouble for the crime.  But, what really bothered me was the fact that the parent sent the teen to live with the grandparents, because the parent was more concerned about a new relationship with another adult instead of the relationship with the teenager.  Every week in court I see grandparents that are raising their grandkids, not because of tragedy, but because the parents are too sorry, lazy, or selfish to take care of their own children.  I wanted to tell this parent that their child was here first and was more of a priority than the new relationship.  But, I didn’t get the opportunity.

I know that we all can be selfish.  We have a sin nature that causes us to struggle with selfish wants and desires.  But, when you are responsible for bringing a new life into this world, your wants, needs, and desires are no longer first priority in your life.  It is now your duty and responsibility to meet the needs of your children. 

Parents need to grow up and be responsible for their own families.  Quit putting your problems off on others, and quit being so consumed with yourself.  If you raise your children properly, then after they are grown there will be plenty of time for loving yourself.

We must be getting close to the end.  Pray for the peace of Jerusalem.  It is our only hope.

Published in: on January 20, 2008 at 12:14 pm  Leave a Comment  

Sometimes You Have to Tell Someone

When I was sixteen my Dad gave me access to his pickup truck.  Man, I still have great memories of that 1981 Chevrolet Custom Deluxe, v-6, Three-speed on the column.  I had fun learning to drive that thing.  But, a lesson that I learned that has stuck with me for the past 19 years is that sometimes you have to tell somebody what needs to be done.  They don’t always know what to do.

I had been driving for a few months when my Dad wanted to use his truck one afternoon.  So, he took the truck and went to town.  On his way to town, he heard a clack-clack-clack sound coming from the engine.  It seems that noone had the oil changed in the truck, and when he checked the dip stick it was bone dry.  When he got home, he began to chew me out for not checking the oil and not maintaining the vehicle.  Well, noone had ever told me that I had to do those things.  I did not know that I had to check the oil.  Luckily for me the engine did not blow up, and the truck was fine.

There is a lesson to be learned here.  Don’t always expect your children to know how to do things.  We as parents have to tell and teach them how to do things.  Whatever the lesson or skill may be, who is teaching your child?

Published in: on June 9, 2007 at 5:38 pm  Comments (4)  

Denial Is Not A River In Egypt!!!

Some people will never get a grip on reality.  I met a grandmother not too long ago, who is in the process of raising her grandchildren.  I am grateful for the opportunity to help this lady, and I think that she will try to do the things that I will teach her.  But, she is not the problem.

She told me her situation.  She is raising a grandchild, who is in trouble with the authorities.  The child’s father died from a condition that is related to alcoholism.  This lady’s husband is also a recovering alcoholic.  When she came to my class, I asked her where her husband was?  She told  me that he would not come to classes like these.  I told her that he needed to because he was the beginning of this family’s problem.  I tried to be nice about how I said that to her.  But, sometimes you just have to be blount with people.  This lady was trying to be the best that she could be, but her husband is in denial that he is the problem.

Folks we have to wake up and see that we will reap what we sow.  This lady lost a son, and now her grandchild is heading down the same path.  Grandpa needs to get more involved and try to make up for his past failures.  Sometimes when we mess up we need to apologize and make a difference where we can.  I am fearful for this young person, because without a positive male figure in their life the future is dim. 

Published in: on April 16, 2007 at 7:03 pm  Comments (3)  

Do You Really Know Your Child?

I am currently reading a book called “The Blessing”.  I highly recommend this book to any parent.  It will make you think about how you relate to your children.

I just finished a chapter that teaches parents to become students of their children.  I was convicted about how much do I really know my kids.  Sometimes we need to just sit down and get to know them.  I’ve come up with some questions that we can ask our kids.  Let me know what you find out.

     1)  What is your favorite food? restaurant?  drink?

     2)  What is your favorite book of the Bible?  Bible character?  Bible verse?  Preacher?

     3)  What is your favorite hymn?  Gospel singer or group?  Gospel song?

     4)  What is your favorite school subject?  teacher?

     5)  Who is your best friend?  why?  what do you admire most about them?

     6)  What is your favorite sport?  favorite pro team?  favorite athlete?

I think that you get the idea that I am trying to convey.  Do we really know our children?  I want to get to know mine better.  There are also many more questions that I can add to this list.  Also the answers will change many times during their lifetime, so I need to stay in touch with them.

This is also a good idea for getting to know our spouses better.

Published in: on April 4, 2007 at 12:02 am  Comments (1)  

Not Every Kid is Doing It!!!

The Parent Project has hit the ground running in North Augusta, SC.  Last week we had our first class, and had 14 adults, and 13 children visit our church.  This week we had 17 adults, and 23 children.  I am so grateful for the parents who come to the class to learn the skills that it takes to have a phenomenal parent-child relationship.

Just a quick tip this week.  There is a problem with teens experimenting with pre-marital sex.  Recently a counselor told me of the sexual problems in some of the local high schools.  I told her what I tell my parents in every class that I teach.  Teens can’t be sexually active if they are never left alone with those of the opposite sex.  Eliminate the alone time, and there won’t be a problem.  She proceeded to tell me that kids are having sex in the bathrooms at the schools.  I said, not my kid, we homeschool.

Thank God that we still have freedom of choice in this matter of controlling our kids environment.  Most of the parents today only care about the financial future or success of their children.  I not only want my kids to be financially successful, but it is my goal to marry-off my children in purity also.  It can be accomplished, and I will try my best to reach this goal. 

Published in: on March 16, 2007 at 1:51 am  Comments (2)  

Teaching Your Children to be Concerned For Others

This past weekend I attended our state convention’s disaster relief training conference.  I was amazed to see the work that has been done, by Southern Baptists, in the name of Jesus, for those who have suffered from disaster.

It was awesome to see how God allowed these horrible things to happen, then He allowed his people to come in and show compassion to those who were hurting.  It is a humbling experience when you think that God is actually using you to do his work.  I was motivated to get involved more in showing the world God’s love.

But, this is a parenting blog, so I thought of something that might help our children.  If you want your children to be more compassionate, then show them how to do it.  There is so much that can be done for others, and I want my kids to live their lives for God’s glory, so I must be the right example. 

Many of us adults go on mission trips to help others, and we don’t let our kids go along.  For many of these trips kids aren’t allowed.  Maybe we need to find mission work that our kids are allowed to be a part of.  If we want to train them up in the way that they should go, we need to do the training.

There are so many people in our country who need our help.  The people who are in Alabama and Georgia who suffered from the tornadoes need help.  Also, Louisiana and Mississippi will need help for quite some time.  Remember that true JOY is Jesus, Others, and then You.  I want my kids to experience that same JOY that I have.

Published in: on March 5, 2007 at 1:04 pm  Comments (4)  

The Greatest Gift For A Child

I’m back after the hostile takeover.  Since this is the Valentine’s season, I would like to share my opinion about Love. 

I believe that the greatest gift that a parent can give a child is the love for their other parent.  In our world today, with the divorce rate climbing every year, our children need to see that their parents love each other. 

I know that many are thinking that the greatest gift to give a child would be salvation.  I agree, but the point that I am trying to make is, how can you model the love of Christ if you can’t even love your spouse.

Let your children know that you love their mom or dad.  It will give them a strong foundation and some added security in a very chaotic world.

Published in: on February 15, 2007 at 8:03 pm  Comments (2)  

A Hostile Valentine Takeover

Hello Bloggers! This is the wife of the BlueCollarParent, and because today is Valentine’s Day, I’ve decided to do something that will drive my husband CRAZY! Tell you about him (or at least how I see him). I’ve known the BlueCollarParent since before he was a parent! When I met him, he was a young fireball that had the whole world figured out. I’ve watched as he has learned that he doesn’t have all the answers. His desire to be a great dad and husband has come in part from his awareness that he has things to learn.

A professor once told me, “When you stop learning, you die.” At the time I thought he was trying to tell us if we quit studying, we’d croak. With age I realize that he meant until we die, we are learning. One of the greatest qualities I see in my husband of 14 years is that he is not afraid to acknowledge when he is wrong and to learn to do it better. He hasn’t made being his wife an easy thing, but I must say it is getting easier every day. Just because we are learning together how to make our family better.

The First principle of the BlueCollarParent is to show your children love and affection everyday. Today is an EXCELLENT day to let your children know you love them. (And to let your husband know that you love him and Thank God for the gift of his love!)

Cease Fire?

Published in: on February 14, 2007 at 6:56 am  Comments (2)  

Does Diet, Health, and Nutrition Really Matter?

Last night we attended a Valentine’s dinner at our church.  The menu contained food that I don’t particularly care for.  So, when I didn’t eat what was being served, the people at my table began to question me about my dietary standards.

I didn’t want to get into a long discussion about health and nutrition with them.  But, what happened last night caused me to be thinking about health issues this morning.  I’ve added some links to my blogroll that I read on a regular basis.  These sites have helped me try to live a healthier life.

My chief concern in posting these links (Matt Furey, Healthmasters, and Tim Kauppinen), is to get people to think about their health standards.  We are seeing too many people die and suffer from cancer, diabetes, and obesity.  Many of the different kinds of cancer can be avoided.  Men, look at the statistics of  those dying of prostate cancer. 

As a young man who is now in full-time ministry, I know that conducting funerals will be a part of my future.  If I can save my people some pain and suffering, I want to try and do that.

So, do some research folks.  A few changes now in your diet and health practice, may save you some pain, suffering, and heartache down the road.

Published in: on February 11, 2007 at 2:04 pm  Comments (10)  

TIME: We Can Never Get It Back

I want to comment this morning about something that is very important to me.  The subject that I write about is my time.

Paul told the Ephesians:  See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

Time is something that we can’t get back.  We have to make decisions about what we are to do with our time.  Who gets your time?  How much time do you spend with God?  How much time do you spend with your spouse?  How much time do you spend with your children?

In my list of priorities, time with God and my wife are at the top of my list.  But, since this is a parenting blog I want to focus on the time we spend with our kids. 

Have you ever looked at your schedule to see how much time is spent with your kids?  I ask the parents who attend my parenting classes to chart their days for me.  I want them to look at their calendars and see how much time is spent day to day with their children.  The typical parent is lucky to get 30 minutes a day with the child.  Now tell me, how are you going to be the influence that God wants you to be in 30 minutes a day?  Christians look at the statistics being put out.  80% of your converts will be under the age of 18.  70% of those converts will leave the church after graduating high school.   I would love to see these stats change.  I think that if they are to change then the parents have to get more involved.  We need to be a bigger influence in the lives of our children.

If we want to pass along our faith and values, then we have to spend more time with our children sharing those things.  Remember you will reap what you sow.  If your faith and love is important to you, and you want to see these attributes in your children, then you must sow them in.  If faithfulness to the church is important to you, then you must pass this along to your children.  Don’t send your kid to church activities.  Go with them.  Be involved.

There are no do-overs in parenting.  You only get to do it once.  You must make wise decisions with your time.  After my children are grown, I want to be able to look back and say that I did it right.

Published in: on February 9, 2007 at 3:22 pm  Comments (4)