Want to try something fun? Set a reminder to go off on your phone and stop whenever you are, even if it means at a friend’s house or in a store, and ask God, “How do You feel about me right now?” This is a great way to increase your spiritual hearing and allow Him to meet you right where you are at. Do it with the kids and allow them to practice hearing from Him too.
- Activities/Teachings, Hearing God's Voice
The Bible teaches us there is a RIVER OF LIFE flowing from the throne of God. Gather everyone in the family room and read together: Revelations 22:1 – “Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the Throne of God and of the Lamb.” Have everyone stand in the same direction with your back facing the throne of God. Picture the river water rising and moving past you as if it were removing things off of you like shame, guilt, worry, fear, sin, temptations, strife, etc. Stand in the river for as long as you need and allow the River of Life to move in, on, and around you. Removing whatever needs to be taken care of, let go, washed, or aligned. Now collectively, turn around facing the same direction with the throne of God in front of you. Picture the River of Life releasing the things of heaven, such as peace, joy, identity, forgiveness, acceptance, belonging, faith, etc. Grab them, pick them up and hold onto them. They are yours!
Read Hebrews 4:16 – “Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” I came down for my quiet time with Jesus one morning and so badly wanted to encounter His love, but a nagging issue was demanding my attention. It was heavy and consuming. I so wanted to let it go but couldn’t seem to find my way to peace about it. I was reminded of this encounter (above) that I had years ago and stood with my back facing the throne and allowed the River of Life to wash this demanding issue off of me, to consume me with His presence. Then I turned around and received the flowing gifts of peace, joy, and alignment to His power! It was breathtaking, life-giving, and so freeing.
Give it a try! The River of Life is waiting for you to encounter the throne of your Living God.
Fear is not a weapon that will keep children safe. Whatever area ignites fear is a landing place for you to rise up in your authority and partner with the God of the universe.
Celebrating those ‘look how far I have come’ moments is a sacred place between a loving Father and a trusting child. Why not carve out some intentional time today to just praise and thank Him for being such an incredible Author of YOUR story. Stop and celebrate how far He has taken you.
I vividly recall the day I put great effort and energy into making a special dinner for my family. I eagerly called them to the table to reveal my effort. I got less-than-sweet comments from each of the children, and they just got up and went off to play. I sat there with a huge mess to clean up and felt somewhat offended. I wanted to go on a cooking strike, vowing never to feed them again, but I realized that wasn’t a good option. I pictured them doing that in someone else’s home, and I didn’t like the thought. I knew I had to figure out a way to TEACH them what honor and gratefulness looked like in that situation. The following morning, they came to the table and I had them draw me a picture. Before they finished, I picked up and said, “Ick. I don’t like purple.” To another one, I said, “Gross. This is nasty”, and another I said, “I hate this.” They were mortified and in complete shock. I asked them how it made them feel. Awful! I explained that when someone makes a meal, it is like their artwork made with love for them. I never forced my kids to eat anything, but I set the bar for them to be grateful, gracious, and kind. After every meal, they are required to thank the person who made the meal and ask to be excused. I am not their maid, slave, or chef; I am their mother worthy of honor and respect.
Take authority over your home and USE THIS to empower your children of all ages. Let me walk you through HOW. The truth is there is sickness going around – always has been – always will be – as we live in a fallen world. Only heaven is sickness free. How you respond to this issue will shape your children when facing future crises. Are you modeling fear and worry or teaching them how to walk in authority full of faith? Either you are partnering with life or death.
Gather the children and talk about C-19. Trust me, if they go to school or own a computer, they have heard about it. We want to explain to them that what makes this virus (use the word ‘cold’ as they understand that better than ‘virus’) different is that it is new to doctors and scientists. Give them an explanation for the fear that is attached to the virus. Cancer, tooth pain, backaches, and tuberculosis all caused the same worry years ago because people were battling things in their bodies, and the doctors did not know how to help them. But over time, God gave the doctors and scientists wisdom in how to help the body through medicine.
Spend time praying as a family for God to give doctors and scientists strategies and solutions to help people! Make a list of how medicine, doctors, dentists, chiropractors, and vitamins have already helped your family. Spend time thanking God for each one of them. Flip your worry to praise.
Declare over your home that the virus is not allowed! Declare that the virus is not welcome in your city! Declare that the virus is not welcome in your country! Pray for a wall of protection against you and any person who is sick! Declare, “Fear, you are a liar, and do not lead me. God does!”
Be wise in taking care of the body given to you by drinking an increased amount of water, consuming less sugar, and getting more rest. This helps your body to become stronger and fight off viruses. Take a family field trip down to the bathroom and practice what it means to wash your hands well (I am being serious). Talk about why it is important to keep hands away from their nose and mouth (and wash often). Talk about facts vs. truth.
FACTS: a virus is unknown to doctors, and they aren’t sure what to do, the virus is making people sick, and the virus feels scary.
TRUTH: God is not surprised by the virus, God is still in control, God can keep me safe, God has a plan, and God comforts me in my unrest.
We want to acknowledge facts but camp out in the TRUTH. Be sensitive to when fear is knocking – both for you and your child. When it comes, do not be chased by fear, but STOP, TURN and FACE the fear. First, identify what the fear is about. Afraid God isn’t in control? Can’t God keep your family safe? Something terrible is going to happen? You will suffer? You won’t be able to protect your children? Identify it and then ASK JESUS for His truth. Release what He told you like a bold statement of truth and hope to those around you. This is how we rise up and become the light in the midst of darkness. Open your mouth in the declaration and speak HIS TRUTH over the situation.
Proverbs 22:6 – “Teach a child to choose the right path, and when he is older, he will remain upon it.”
Teach – verb 1. show or explain to (someone) how to do something. There is a difference between dictating laws and teaching them. Instructions can turn into rules/laws, which is legalism. Teaching is the verb of Jesus! Ex. A child steals something from the store. We can instruct our children that we don’t steal, or we can teach them WHY a loving Father doesn’t desire for His children to steal from others. Ex. A child hits his sister. We can discipline and reprimand the child for his behavior, or we can teach them HOW hitting affects others. Ex. A child doesn’t listen to you. We can pull out parenting tools of control and fear, or we can teach them WHAT obedience looks like. Are you instructing or teaching your children?
I have an above-average sensitivity to whining. It grates on me deeply. I taught my children from the toddler years that if they whine, they lose. I even typed it up and framed it on the wall in our kitchen on their level (along with other house rules). I first taught them in the time of peace what I did want from them, and we role-played what whiny and peaceful words looked like. Then the first time they whined to get their way, I got on their level and said, “When you are ready to use your big girl words, let me know,” and I would walk away. It took a matter of seconds before they came chasing me and changed their tone. Whining is a lack of self-control and orphan. I want my children to speak to me with confidence and self-control. I laid the foundation, and this was something that brought a lot of peace in our homes.
The first thing I ever recall hearing the Father say to me was, “The deaf can hear.” I laughed. And then I argued, “No, they can’t. They are deaf.” But I heard that statement many times. I just assumed that all believers heard God speaking the way I did; after all, that IS what the Word says – His sheep will know His voice. I vividly recall talking to a family member one day about hearing God, and while she loved the Lord, she said she had never heard Him speak. That blew me away. It opened my eyes to the fact that so few children hear their Father’s voice. I started teaching classes on it, and it has been a life mission of mine to help connect young and old to their Father’s voice. I am so passionate about it that I created this resource to help others. In Conversations with Our Creator, you will grow in your ability to hear Him and learn how to teach your children.
Is your heart caught in a cycle of saying “I am sorry” over and over from a mess you made with your children? I ministered to a mom who said with tears streaming down her face, “I will beg my son for forgiveness for the rest of my life.” I told her that needed to stop and that I wanted to help her resolve that once and for all. While the world would tell her she messed up and made poor choices, I see it differently. She is a product of choices that her parents and grandparents made. She did not have the language or tools to discern what was going on in her world. She needed drugs and alcohol to escape the torment and pain. I don’t think that is a bad mom. I think that is a mom who needs help becoming a Daughter. When we make messes with our children (we all do) and partner with the accuser, we wallow in guilt and condemnation. We then come to our children in a bent over, broken, pathetic, insecure way that only makes THEM feel unsafe. We are teaching them that mistakes are fatal. We need to be modeling for them grace, forgiveness, and connection even when we are at our worst. I coached this mom on how to forgive herself, and then I taught her how to minister to her son’s pain. Yes, he suffered heartbreak because of her choices (he was taken away when she was in jail), but IN THAT PLACE is where we get to show them who Jesus is. I coached her on how to begin to have conversations with her son that mistakes do not equal rejection or abandonment. Just like he gets time outs for his choice, mom had hers, but Jesus never left him. This mom who is becoming a Daughter just got reunited with her son full-time! If you think about them, pray for them as they continue to walk this out – together!