Archives For February 2012

Couple on bike 8814696187_aa564656a6

By Lisa Cherry

What a crazy idea.

We take our kids to Sunday school and church from infancy; we teach them right and wrong; we pray with them and for them; we anticipate their successful launch into mature adulthood by carefully selecting the right Christian education programs…but we do nothing about the cute little couple next door.

You know…that nice couple that smiles at you, backing in and out of their nice little suburban driveway in their nice, newer model cars.  They are so friendly to your teens and tots.  They’re even nice enough to buy the gizmos that your kids offer as fundraisers for their youth group trips.

They just found out they are expecting their first baby, and your family is invited to the baby shower.

One problem. They are not married. They are members of the “counterfeit young couples” club.

And your children will be hard pressed to recognize this. Why? Because cohabitation and those who practice it have been so “normalized” in TV commercials, movies, and novels.

With about two-thirds of couples choosing to live together before marriage these days, we’d better do something with the cute young couple!

At our house, we talk about those abnormal “normals.”  In fact, we talk and talk and talk. If my kids are going to truly grab onto the Kingdom of God normal of purity and marriage, then I, as the parent, must carry the responsibility of thoroughly discipling them on these issues.

My teaching must go beyond the mind gait. Sure I need to tell them of the radical costs of such behavior. But I must also communicate on a deeper level to their hearts and souls. Praying for their love relationship with Jesus, I must inspire a desire for radical purity and radical romance…all in God’s blessed package.

Image: Kat N.M.L. "The One You Love" Flickr Creative Commons
License:  Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

In case you missed them, here are the earlier posts in this series:

Cohabitation: The New Dating?

I Just Live with My Boyfriend Because it is Cheaper,” Cohabitation Part 2

Fornication? What’s That?—Cohabitation, Part 3

There Go the Brides, Cohabitation, Part 4

Bacon Marriage: Kid Worldview

admin —  February 27, 2012 — Leave a comment

A mockery of a mockery…

That’s the conclusion I drew when I flipped the channels and caught a Jack in the Box commercial touting a new burger creation.

“I’m getting married,” the sincere-looking young man confided to his mother. She asked about the bride-to-be and he sheepishly replied it wasn’t a woman.

OK—brace for it, I thought—another profession of a homosexual union?

Hardly.  He was marrying bacon.

The ensuing images of him standing at the altar of a church with a strip of bacon were too absurd to even be funny.

But the shallow parody did make me think:  Is this how far we’ve come in diminishing the God-ordained institution of marriage? We now can mock the mockery?

My mind reached back to recent words I heard preached by Pastor Robert Jeffress, which are echoed in his newly released book, Twilight’s Last Gleaming: How America’s Last Days Can Be Your Best Days.

He asserts that redefining marriage to include same-sex relationships diminishes the very essence of the meaning of God’s gift of uniting a man and a woman in His holy institution.

If any partnership can be “marriage”, then where does it stop? Can a man marry another man? A woman marry a woman? Three men marry one woman? Four women marry one man? A 50-year-old marry a 13-year-old? A man marry “man’s best friend” and unite with his dog? Or, as the commercial quips, a man marry his favorite food?

Jeffress likens this redefinition of marriage to suit the eye’s of men—not God—to renaming all the colors “purple.”

“An apple, a daisy, and the sky are all declared purple,” he writes, leaving the word “purple” stripped of distinctiveness.

“In a world where everything is purple, nothing is truly purple.”

Sadly, we’ve reached a point in our culture where a “bacon marriage” commercial can either be dismissed as offensive…or embraced as a teaching tool.

Ask your children, your spouse, your friends, your co-workers: What is marriage? What does God’s Word say about marriage? Can you reject the notion of same-sex marriage and not be a “bigot?”

We must face cold hard facts: Our youth today are growing up in a culture hostile to traditional marriage. We can “click off” the images or words that perpetuate it, or we can acknowledge the assaults and use them to start deep spiritual conversations that reinforce God’s Word.

By Lisa Cherry

My monthly menu plan has been working very well, especially with our crazy schedule traveling to Acquire the Fire speaking events.  I carefully designed the menu to allow me to do the harder cooking early in the week, while the girls and Dad would be left with the easy, pre-prepped fare when I am gone on weekends.

I calculated correctly except for week 4 Thursday night.  It’s a tough one if I fly out Friday a.m.

Rebekah is my faithful dinner assistant, and what happened one Thursday night recently was certainly not her fault.  I accidentally set her up!

I left her with the pre-cooked and chopped chicken and veggies to assemble the chicken pie.  Should be easy as pie, I thought.

“Rebekah, just grab my recipe card and mix it up,” I told her. “All the ingredients are out.”

So she did.  Only one problem:  After 40 years of cooking I had deleted the instructions from that recipe.  It was simply one long list of ingredients.

Ever wonder what happens when you mix the crust ingredients with the chicken filling ingredients and stir?   My family does not recommend that you try it!

I have substituted a new menu selection for Week 4 Thursday now!  But I thought I would share the recipe with you—the unscrambled version, that is.  It’s one of our favorites.

Chicken pie
Crust:
4 c. whole grain flour (mixture of whole wheat, barley, rice, and/or millet)
2 1/4 c. water
2 1/2 T baking powder
1 c. dry milk
4 eggs
3/4 c. olive oil

Filling:

2 lb. bag frozen mixed vegetables
1 lb. bag frozen corn
3 cans Healthy Request condensed soup (chicken, celery, and/or mushroom)
1 cooked deboned chicken
2-3 cups chicken broth

Mix all filling ingredients. Pour into 2 9x13 baking dishes. Mix crust ingredients. Pour crust mix on top. Baked 350 30-40 minutes.

Bridal bouquets 8472457350_93d909a35e

By Lisa Cherry

When I was a girl, I remember watching a TV series called Here Come the Brides. Set in a wilderness logging camp, a group of men were eagerly searching for women who would be their wives.

I do not remember the show to be sanctified and holy with its made-for-TV sexual humor.

However, the goal of the show seemed to be pretty clear: lots of weddings.

I am not sure that show’s theme would make it in today’s culture. We might want to call the alternative There Go the Brides.

With about two-thirds of couples choosing to live together before marriage and 6.4 million couples self-identified as “cohabiting,” the traditional image of the bride seems to be passing away from our culture.

Now don’t get me wrong. Sales of white dresses have not lagged. Just note the bridal magazines at any Wal-Mart check out line.

We obviously still enjoy the drama and fanfare of a gorgeous party. But what on earth does the white dress mean at our modern weddings?

Most of what’s advertised in Brides magazine looks more suggestive of the lingerie for the honeymoon than dresses for the ceremony!

Contrast this with the Biblical picture of a bride. Jesus, when He returns, will come for back for the church—prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.  In fact Paul tells us Jesus is anticipating a holy bride without spot or wrinkle.  Would our kids even know what that means?

A popular worship song by Hillsong United called Savior King says it like this….  “Let now your church shine as the bride, That You saw in your heart as you offered up your life.”

Parents and grandparents, we must not allow the Kingdom of God definition of the bride to disappear! We are His salt and light to a confused generation.

Image: Katsu Nojiri “Wedding Photos” Flickr Creative Commons
License: Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

In case you missed them, here are the earlier posts in this series:

Cohabitation: The New Dating?

I Just Live with My Boyfriend Because it is Cheaper,” Cohabitation Part 2

Fornication? What’s That?—Cohabitation, Part 3

 

Linking up to Marital Oneness Monday.

By Lisa Cherry

At age five, Josiah has sat through more basketball games than I had sat through in my first 30 years.  He likes to sit on Dad’s lap while he coaches his three big brothers’ team.

From that vantage point, Josiah asked Doug an interesting question the other night during the third quarter:

“Daddy, don’t you guys ever practice boxing out anymore?

Boxing out? I don’t even know what that is!

Okay, I looked it up.  Boxing out is a play used to get rebounds. A player boxes out a player on the other team by getting between him and the basket.

But how did Josiah know what it was, and that the team needed to use it?

Don’t tell me kids don’t learn by watching and listening!  Makes me want to be extra careful of what they see and hear.  How about you?