Tag Archive | Family

Family Worship – Beeke

The book Family Worship by Joel Beeke is available in a free pdf which can be sent to your Kindle or read online.

Family Worship PDF

Every church desires growth. Surprisingly few churches, however, seek to promote internal church growth by stressing the need to raise children in covenantal truth. Few seriously grapple with why many adolescents become nominal members with mere notional faith or abandon evangelical truth for unbiblical doctrine and modes of worship.

I believe one major reason for this failure is the lack of stress upon family worship. In many churches and homes family worship is an optional thing, or at most a superficial exercise such as a brief table grace before meals. Consequently, many children grow up with no experience or impression of Christian faith and worship as a daily reality.


Difficult Family

Seems like every family has difficult people in it.  You know those extended family members who no matter what happens, they tend to get upset and offended about something.

  • The one who points out that no one considered them when planning get togethers.

  • No one fixed anything they could eat.

  • The children get on their nerves.

  • They can’t watch the football game because you don’t have cable.

  • They never like the gift they are given, but are offended if not given a gift.

  • Their measure of love is by how much money you spend on them.

I’m sure most people can add to the above list many, many more instances.  So what do you do?  How can you best deal with family members who choose to be unhappy and want everyone to be unhappy right along with them?

I’m afraid there is nothing much we can do to change difficult family members.  No amount of talking with, catering to or appeasing will solve the problem.  🙁   There are some people who just enjoy being miserable and trying to make others miserable along with them.  As any believer knows the only hope for a miserable person is Christ.  Yet, no matter how much we pray and share with them we cannot give them Salvation ourselves, only the Holy Spirit can bring them to Salvation.

So what do we do?

I have found that praying for the difficult family member regularly helps me.  I’m sure it also helps them, just it isn’t instant.  🙁  But when I know I will be with a difficult family member I try to spend specific time in prayer for that person.  Used to my prayers were full of “Lord change them.”  While I do still pray that they will change due to becoming a child of Christ,  that isn’t my focus, praying to change them.   I pray for their Salvation most importantly, with an eternal perspective.

But I also pray for how I interact with them.  Family members can learn how to push another’s family members “buttons”.  I pray that I am able to not be offended or take personally the attacks and jabs.  I pray to be able to deal graciously with them and not to get my feelings hurt no matter how hard they may try.  I have found praying for difficult family members and my response to them has helped immensely.  I rarely get my feelings hurt over such.  Verbal jabs and intential slights just don’t bother me anymore, usually.  I do find that it is harder to not be bothered when the slights and jabs are directed at another without reason.  But I typically don’t react with an emotional response anymore.

Try spend a week of praying ahead of time for a difficult family member and just see if it doesn’t change you and make things more pleasant.


What Are Your Thoughts About Leaving Sodom?

The posts on raising your children in Sodom and or Chorazin have caused some discussion about whether families should be getting out of Sodom.

Raising Your Family in Sodom – GTY

Sodom or Chorazin?

I know I typically never get a chance to read the comments left for another website’s post so often I do miss the best parts. So I’m encouraging you to read over the comments on Raising Your Family in Sodom.  It is a hard subject and there is no clear cut direction from Scripture such as once XYZ happens in a city we are to pack up and leave.

How do you determine whether or not to stay in a location?

What are the criteria?

I must add a disclaimer I’ve never really been to a big city.  Atlanta is the biggest city I’ve been in as an adult, I guess, and all the cities I’ve been in have been in the South which I’m sure is different from other big cities.  When I was 16, I traveled to London but that was a long time ago and the things I remember striking me there as bizarre; dyed hair, body piercing, tattoos, strange clothes and hair styles are pretty commonly seen today.

My best understanding that I arrived at is this:  (this is from a comment box yesterday)

Obviously homeschool is not a panacea for the evils of the world. There are many homeschooling families that I would not let my children spend much time with. However, homeschooling has the advantage of allowing parents to be with their children and know what is going on and being taught. That is one of the biggest advantages. There is a big difference in being in Sodom along with your children and sending your children out in Sodom alone.

Granted Lot was told to leave Sodom and we should all obey the Lord when and if He says leave. But while often the focus is on Lot and Sodom, we tend to forget that some of the biggest problems were when Lot withdrew to a cave with his daughters. He was out of Sodom and yet his “holing up” mentality is what led to his and his daughter’s sins. We are never as NT believers told to leave the world and “hole up” in a seemingly safe place; no place is safe without being in the Lord’s will.

We are told to not love the world:

1 John 2:15 (ESV) Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

Nor to be transformed to the world:

Romans 12:2 (ESV) Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

The problem is we do not distinguish between the world and brothers in Christ. When those who claim to be Christians are living like the world, we are to separate from them particularly, but not necessarily the unsaved world. Obviously there is a distinction to be made.

1 Corinthians 5:9-13 (ESV)
9 I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people—
10 not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world
11 But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one.
12 For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge?
13 God judges those outside. “Purge the evil person from among you.”

America’s problem today is that there is no distinction between the world and the brothers in Christ. So maybe we should be running from the worldly churches. Yet not running from the unsaved world in the cities, but running toward them with the gospel.

So what do you think Scripture would have us do?