Archives For February 2011

“Mom, I don’t like playing soccer anymore. The coach is making us run laps. It’s just no fun anymore. Can’t I quit?”

“Dad, it’s raining outside. I don’t want to rake now.”

“Mom, this book is so boring. Do I really have to read it?”

It seems several times a week (OK, maybe several times a day!) I am faced with one of the more unpleasant tasks of mothering. My kids see it as “pain infliction,” but I’m not talking about spanking.

I don’t want my kids to be truant in the school of hard knocks. I don’t want to let them avoid discomfort just because a task requires hard work, endurance or self-control.

I want to prepare them to take their proper place as mature believers who will rule and reign as God’s ambassadors on the earth. Sometimes, suffering and sacrifice are just part of their education.

Doesn’t sound much like the sweet, American dream childhood of joy, laughter and pleasure, does it?

But I find myself in conflict. Like every mama, I want my kids to have a happy childhood. So how can I ensure that they will not wind up as overgrown babies, too soft and immature to be any use to themselves or God?

Continue reading “Soft Cookies are Great; Soft Kids Aren’t: Parenting Tip of the Week” »

By Lisa Cherry

When anyone asks one of my children if they have their own bedroom, I have to chuckle. In a household with eight kids still at home, the odds are not good. We are very blessed to own a house with ample space for our larger than average brood. But when you do the math— 3700 square feet divided by ten—you find that extra space is in short supply.

Our home had been sitting on the market for a long time when we purchased it in 1999. Not many people wanted a five bedroom house, without a luxurious master bedroom suite. We carved out another bedroom in the large, partially finished basement to round up to six. It was perfect for us. So right now with our first two kids launched out, the next two oldest teens have private spaces, while everyone else has a roommate.

Over the years, we have had many combinations of roommate assignments. It would take a family archivist to keep track of them all. Coordinating nap schedules, room décor, sex and age of occupants has made for nearly annual room adjustments.

Continue Reading...

Protests in Egypt: Decoding the News

admin —  February 18, 2011

By Beth Groh

Note from Lisa: Hi Frontline Moms, this post would make a great discussion starter at family dinnertime. You can help your kids identify the worldview used to filter the news on world events.

You saw the images on TV … swarms of people taking to the streets of Egypt, spreading to Iran, Yemen and other countries in the Middle East.

An uneasy feeling?

Wondering how—or if—or when—it might touch your life?

Your instinctive “unsettled” reaction is wise. You are, as a Frontline Mom, already impacted by this uprising… just not necessarily in the way you might think.

Now I’m not going to muse about the geo-political consequences, the Muslim-Christian tensions, the ominous threat to Israel, the security threat to the vital Suez Canal, etc. All valid issues to consider.

But let’s zero in on something else.

As you watch the events—and, perhaps more importantly, news coverage on these events—you’ll sense an utter bewilderment and denial about the true intentions of the hard-core Muslim Jihadists, who quite possibly will gain influence out of the chaos.

Many so-called analysts and journalists dismiss the words and actions of hard-line radicals who truly want to usher in a new Muslim world order, headed by a Caliphate, where Sharia law reigns and “infidels” are silenced. Have you heard that spin?

Just this week, those words came from former President Jimmy Carter when he spoke in Texas: “I think that the Muslim Brotherhood is not anything to be afraid of,” Carter said. “They will be subsumed in the overwhelming demonstration of desire for freedom and democracy.”

Ask yourself this: Why shouldn’t we believe that certain religious zealots mean what they say when they call for a world Islamic government? And why shouldn’t we fear their potential for growing influence in Egypt and other nations?

I take Muslim radicals at their word—that big hole in the ground that used to be the World Trade Center makes me a believer.

Yet many liberals dismiss the threat. Why?

Once again, we’re in a battle of worldviews.

Those with a worldly, humanistic worldview see the world through man’s eyes. Religion? Optional and often oppressive. No one religion is right—truth is in the eye of the beholder. (Some post-modernists even doubt “truth” exists.)

The Bible is a good teaching tool, they reason, but must be viewed as written by flawed men and evaluated in its historical context. Same with the Koran.

So in that humanistic worldview, only those few “unenlightened” people cling to their Bibles or Korans.

Those with a secular, humanist worldview have a hard time understanding why anyone could feel so passionately about their faith—whether Muslim or Christian.

Die for one’s faith? Hard to fathom, since faith, in that worldview, is often considered a personal choice that is selected—much like a favorite sport or a preferred place to live—and not a core religious belief to govern one’s life.

Therefore it’s no surprise that those of us with a biblical worldview—or even a radical Islamic worldview—seem distant, narrow-minded, powerless.

That’s naïve. And dangerous, if those leaders underestimate the risk and weaken our nation’s defense.

As someone with a biblical worldview, you must learn to watch for—and identify—the worldview of those who are filtering information to you about world events, such as those in Egypt or Iran, or making decisions on your behalf in government on how to respond to those issues.

Be skeptical if you hear assurances like this: “Don’t worry—radical Muslims may talk a tough game but they won’t take control of a country so ‘Westernized’ as Egypt.” Ask yourself: What appears to be the worldview of the person telling you, “Don’t worry”?

A secular worldview minimizes the power of faith. A biblical worldview realizes that faith is power … for evil or for good.

So stand guard, Frontline Moms, and use the discernment that comes from a biblical worldview to analyze events swirling around you … instead of letting others filter events for you and your family with mere human eyes that will distort.

Photo courtesy of osos70 via stock.xchng

sad toy 5421517469_d0d2997eec

By Lisa Cherry

Some of us Frontline moms are serving our families by homeschooling our children. For those of us called to serve the Lord in this capacity, we want to provide some encouragement and support. Please note our new featured tab Homeschooling Moms. We would love to hear from you as we connect our kids to the Father's heart. Invite your homeschooling friends to join us!

As a homeschool mom of ten, with 22 years of teaching under my belt, I have developed some quick tricks to help “boost me” over the hump of the mid-year burn out temptation which, by the way, tends to hit me like clockwork every February and March!

1. Remind yourself about the original vision. This seems pretty basic, but around this time of the year when the lessons are not quite on time to my September schedule and the long months of winter produce loud, bouncy boys wrestling between math lessons, I hear my own thoughts say, “Now why are you putting yourself through this, Lisa?”

At times like this, I have learned to quickly refresh my memory: I am a homeschooling mom because God called our family to this assignment. This isn’t a hobby or a whim. This is a holy mission to disciple and train up a mighty generation for Him. Of course, I will encounter obstacles. That’s part of my assignment. But I will succeed because, “Faithful is He who called us and He will bring it to pass!”

Continue reading “Three Quick Pick-me-ups to Get Over the Midyear Homeschool Slump” »

Standing By My Convictions

admin —  February 15, 2011

By Beth Groh
I cringed when I saw the magazine cover picturing Elton John, his “partner” and their newly adopted baby.

Not because I was personally offended by the photo. Actually I felt quite sad for them because I felt, in my heart, that the happy-looking threesome was living in a world of darkness… despite the glitz and glamour that surrounds the Hollywood elite.

My cringe was over the news coverage itself. I heard the immediate cry of “discrimination” when one retail store bowed to customers’ requests to put the magazine behind a shield so children wouldn’t see the image.

It has become all too predictable. “How heartless for people to treat Elton that way!” And, “Why would anyone consider that offensive?” “So stores can have women in provocative swimsuits but you can’t show two men and a baby?”

I’m tired as a mom of being marginalized by society for wanting to stand behind a Biblical and, still for the most part, a legal view of marriage being the union of a man and a woman.

Continue reading “Standing By My Convictions” »