Not that we are fully settled into our new home and area, as this will take time but our home is 90% done and the time has come to get back on track. The Lord has really been prompting me, through the Word, to do a better job at guiding my home and to kill every lion that I see in the street so as to not hinder me from being about that which He has called me to. (Proverbs 22:13) As I have been seeking the Lord for wisdom and direction in this matter I came across an old study that I had done a few years ago and I was so blessed by it that I revamped a few goals and am seeking to walk forward in these areas. I share this with you for several reasons.
1. I thought that perhaps it might be a blessing to someone else and
2. For accountability for me. :-)
Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.
As I begin to set forth some areas that I feel I need to be more disciplined in I am reminded of two things from thee above verse –
1. He is able to far more in my life than I can or could ever image or think of doing.
2. All that I do and am is for His glory not mine.
for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.
Possession of the qualities (especially mental qualities) required to do something or get something done
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.
The act of denying yourself; controlling your impulses
The trait of resolutely controlling your own behavior
Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, "You shall be holy, for I am holy." And if you call on him as Father who judges impartially according to each one's deeds, conduct yourselves with fear throughout the time of your exile, knowing that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot.
How I spend my time is not optional! As I walk in my flesh and spend my time foolishly on earthly or fleshly pleasures, I am in disobedience.
Psa_143:8 Let me hear in the of your steadfast love, for in you I trust. Make me know the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.
Each morning I want to seek the Lord in prayer to
1. Be in the presence of my Heavenly Father and fellowship with Him
2. and to seek the direction that He has for me in that day.
Mar_1:35 And rising very early in the , while it was still dark, he departed and went out to a desolate place, and there he prayed.
Following the example of Christ, I want to arise very early in the morning and first seek the Lord in prayer.
My goal is to arise at 5:30 each day and to spend 60 minutes in prayer and study.
Mat_21:22 And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith."
Rom_12:12 Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.
Php_4:6 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
Jas_5:16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.
Psa_119:9 How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to your word.
Psa_119:11 I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.
Pro_29:18 Where there is no prophetic vision the people cast off restraint, but blessed is he who keeps the law.
Pro_30:5 Every proves true; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.
Psa_119:105 Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
1Ti_4:8 for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.
Pro 31:17 She dresses herself with strength and makes her arms strong.
Pro 31:25 Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come.
While I would not say that the scriptures put a great deal of emphasis on physical exercise it does speak that is of some value. Therefore this should not be a great focus of my life but does have some value to be a stronger vessel for all that the Lord calls me too.
My goal is to exercise Monday through Friday at 6:30 a.m. I want to include cardiovascular and strength training.
Getting ready for the day
Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
Do not let your adorning be external--the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear-- but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God's sight is very precious.
likewise also that women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly attire, but with what is proper for women who profess godliness--with good works.
Freedom from vanity or conceit
Characterized by socially or conventionally acceptable morals
What is important in getting ready is that it also be done for the glory of God. It is not me that I want others to see but rather for others to see Christ in me. My inward person is far more important and pleasing to God than my outward. My focus needs to be the inner person, while being careful with what I put on outwardly as it too reflects my Lord. Be neat and orderly but being careful that neither my hair nor clothing nor my body language draws attention to me.
My goal is to shower and get ready for day after exercising at about 7:30.
Business of the day
Mat_6:34 "Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.
For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; a time to tear, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace. What gain has the worker from his toil? I have seen the business that God has given to the children of man to be busy with. He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man's heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end. I perceived that there is nothing better for them than to be joyful and to do good as long as they live; also that everyone should eat and drink and take pleasure in all his toil--this is God's gift to man.
Schedule is important. There should be set times that things are done. I think the end of this passage is such a key component. Be joyful and do good and take pleasure in our toil. Work is not part of the curse rather it is a gift from God. An interesting thought to ponder and to have an appropriate attitude toward. Consider, what is the work God has called me too? This too is a key component, as there are many things that could call for our time, but what work has God given to us to do. A careful look at this is needed.
5:30 Get up, do devotions
7:30 Shower – get ready
8:00 Make sure younger children are ready
8:30 Morning chores – out and in
9:00 Catechism or Proverbs study with younger children
9:30 Class time
Afternoon hours include: naps or reading time
4:00 Play time for children
Office work or study for me
Evening hours include: Family worship
8:30 Bedtime for 4 youngest
10:00 Bedtime for everyone else
Rom_6:21 But what fruit were you getting at that time from the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death.
Anything that is done for or in the flesh is shameful. I must remember that it is only what is done for the glory of God that is important and needful. There should be godly purpose in all that I do or spend my time thinking on.
1Co_10:31 So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.
Was I vacillating when I wanted to do this? Do I make my plans according to the flesh, ready to say "Yes, yes" and "No, no" at the same time?
John Gill writes:
2 Corinthians 1:17 When I was therefore thus minded, did I use lightness?.... When I had thus determined to come to you, and had signified the same by writing, or messengers, did I use lightness in my resolutions and promises? did I act rashly, unadvisedly, and without consideration? did I promise certainly that I would come, without annexing any condition to it? did I not say, I would come to you shortly, if the Lord will? see 1Co_4:19.
Or the things that I purpose, do l purpose according to the flesh? do I consult myself? my own interest and advantage? do I seek the gratification of any carnal affection, as covetousness, ambition, or vain glory? &c. what sinister end could have been obtained, if I had come as I purposed, or is answered by my not coming? or when I have purposed anything, have I resolved upon it in my own strength? have I thought it lay in my own power to effect it?
that with me there should be yea, yea, and nay, nay? as if I could make my "yea" continue "yea", and my "nay, nay?" when all actions are weighed by God, and all events are at his dispose; man appoints, and God disappoints; and who can help these things? or thus, has there appeared such contradictions in my words, and such inconstancy in my conduct, that my "yeas" are "nays", and my "nays yeas?" that I say one thing at one time, and another at another time, or both in the same breath? that I should say one thing, and mean another, on purpose to deceive, and change my mind and conduct without any reason?
My schedule and plans must be made and done in prayerful consideration, taking direct orders only from my Master. I must put aside my desires and think soberly of His desires for my day.
Thus my goal is to prayerfully put in place a schedule where there is a time for all things. Not to be rigid so that I walk in my flesh but to have a spirit led schedule that honors and serves God in all that He has for me and those that I am in charge of their time. Pro_16:9 The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps. Schedule stated above. J
Teaching the children
"Now this is the commandment, the statutes and the rules that the LORD your God commanded me to teach you, that you may do them in the land to which you are going over, to possess it, that you may fear the LORD your God, you and your son and your son's son, by keeping all his statutes and his commandments, which I command you, all the days of your life, and that your days may be long. Hear therefore, O Israel, and be careful to do them, that it may go well with you, and that you may multiply greatly, as the LORD, the God of your fathers, has promised you, in a land flowing with milk and honey. "Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. "And when the LORD your God brings you into the land that he swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give you--with great and good cities that you did not build, and houses full of all good things that you did not fill, and cisterns that you did not dig, and vineyards and olive trees that you did not plant--and when you eat and are full, then take care lest you forget the LORD, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. It is the LORD your God you shall fear. Him you shall serve and by his name you shall swear. You shall not go after other gods, the gods of the peoples who are around you-- for the LORD your God in your midst is a jealous God--lest the anger of the LORD your God be kindled against you, and he destroy you from off the face of the earth. "You shall not put the LORD your God to the test, as you tested him at Massah. You shall diligently keep the commandments of the LORD your God, and his testimonies and his statutes, which he has commanded you. And you shall do what is right and good in the sight of the LORD, that it may go well with you, and that you may go in and take possession of the good land that the LORD swore to give to your fathers by thrusting out all your enemies from before you, as the LORD has promised. "When your son asks you in time to come, 'What is the meaning of the testimonies and the statutes and the rules that the LORD our God has commanded you?' then you shall say to your son, 'We were Pharaoh's slaves in Egypt. And the LORD brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand. And the LORD showed signs and wonders, great and grievous, against Egypt and against Pharaoh and all his household, before our eyes. And he brought us out from there, that he might bring us in and give us the land that he swore to give to our fathers. And the LORD commanded us to do all these statutes, to fear the LORD our God, for our good always, that he might preserve us alive, as we are this day. And it will be righteousness for us, if we are careful to do all this commandment before the LORD our God, as he has commanded us.'
As I begin looking at this topic of teaching the children, which is another important aspect of my day, I was reminded of this passage in Deuteronomy. Educating the children is not simply teaching them the “academic” subjects, but rather encompasses so much more. Yes they need to learn the “academics”, however, this is actually a small part of there education. This verse really speaks of the aspect of walking along side, which is a moment by moment, hour by hour happening. I must be in tune with the children and see the opportunities throughout the day to teach the children. Home educating children is not about bring the public school system home. It is a very different concept.
Do all things without grumbling or questioning, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain. Even if I am to be poured out as a drink offering upon the sacrificial offering of your faith, I am glad and rejoice with you all.
I find this verse so challenging and encouraging as a mother. This must be the attitude within me. Put off self and serve and minister to my husband and children without grumbling or questioning the ways of God. However, it does not stop there. I must put my whole heart in it. Being willing to be poured out as a drink offering for there spiritual well being. My focus must be eternal. This takes wisdom!
I am currently diligently seeking to put together our school schedule for the year. I am so excited to begin working with Esther and Sarah this year on reading and to incorporate many areas of learning with the children that are truly new to us all as our climate and culture are so different here in South Georgia. A big focus this year is going to be gardening and bugs.
Jas 1:5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.
Prayer is so essential!
“The fire shall ever be burning upon the altar; it shall never go out.”
Keep the altar of private prayer burning. This is the very life of all piety. The sanctuary and family altars borrow their fires here, therefore let this burn well. Secret devotion is the very essence, evidence, and barometer, of vital and experimental religion.
Burn here the fat of your sacrifices. Let your closet seasons be, if possible, regular, frequent, and undisturbed. Effectual prayer availeth much. Have you nothing to pray for? Let us suggest the Church, the ministry, your own soul, your children, your relations, your neighbours, your country, and the cause of God and truth throughout the world. Let us examine ourselves on this important matter. Do we engage with lukewarmness in private devotion? Is the fire of devotion burning dimly in our hearts? Do the chariot wheels drag heavily? If so, let us be alarmed at this sign of decay. Let us go with weeping, and ask for the Spirit of grace and of supplications. Let us set apart special seasons for extraordinary prayer. For if this fire should be smothered beneath the ashes of a worldly conformity, it will dim the fire on the family altar, and lessen our influence both in the Church and in the world.
The text will also apply to the altar of the heart. This is a golden altar indeed. God loves to see the hearts of his people glowing towards himself. Let us give to God our hearts, all blazing with love, and seek his grace, that the fire may never be quenched; for it will not burn if the Lord does not keep it burning. Many foes will attempt to extinguish it; but if the unseen hand behind the wall pour thereon the sacred oil, it will blaze higher and higher. Let us use texts of Scripture as fuel for our heart’s fire, they are live coals; let us attend sermons, but above all, let us be much alone with Jesus.
(July 15 Morning devotion from Charles Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening Devotional)