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Criticism – Something to Value

11 My son, do not despise the LORD’s discipline   and do not resent his rebuke, 12 because the LORD disciplines those he loves,   as a father the son he delights in. Proverbs 3:11-12 Criticism would make few top 10 lists of favorite gifts. While the Proverbs don’t use the term criticism, there are many passages that talk about receiving a rebuke. Almost surprisingly, the Proverbs teach that receiving a rebuke is often a good thing. Chapter 9 goes so far as to say that a wise man will love you if you rebuke him (9:8). Since the Garden, our natural tendency is to avoid blame and shift responsibility to others when our actions are challenged. It is easy […]

Preparing Your Children for Criticism

Like a coating of glaze over earthenware        are fervent lips with an evil heart. Proverbs 6:23 A lying tongue hates those it hurts,        and a flattering mouth works ruin. Proverbs 6:28 Let another praise you, and not your own mouth;        someone else, and not your own lips. Proverbs 27:2 Wounds from a friend can be trusted,        but an enemy multiplies kisses. Proverbs 27:6 The section of Proverbs from   6:23 – 27:6 has some profound things to say about receiving criticism. One theme of this passage is to warn against living for the praise of others.  The wise man (including the wise child) is motivated by the fear of […]

Worldview Summary

When I was a boy in my father’s house,   still tender, and an only child of my mother, he taught me and said,   "Lay hold of my words with all your heart;   keep my commands and you will live. Get wisdom, get understanding;   do not forget my words or swerve from them. Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you;   love her, and she will watch over you. Proverbs 4:3-6 The past three blogs have looked at the issue of worldview and young children. In chapter 4 of Proverbs, Solomon gives a compelling worldview—the ultimate reality check. Two powerful directives frame his worldview. The first directive, in verse 4, says, “…with all of your […]

Toddlers, Futile Thinking and the Gospel

So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking.  Eph. 4:17 But the way of the wicked is like deep darkness;        they do not know what makes them stumble. Proverbs 4:19 Another consequence of children’s natural worldview is futile thinking. Often parents say things like, why can’t children just do what the Bible says, can’t they see it is for their own good? The answer is – no they can’t see that. Ephesians describes the thinking of those who don’t know God as futile. This fits closely with the description of the wicked in Proverbs 4:19. Those without […]

toddlers and worldview part 2

Doing what comes naturally 17So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking. 18They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. 19Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, with a continual lust for more.  Eph. 4:17-19 This passage is seldom applied to child-training and to toddlers. However, there is much to learn from Paul’s words regarding training children. This passage illustrates what happens when children are not brought […]

toddlers and worldview

Toddlers and worldview are not concepts that appear to be compatible at first glance. The image of a 3–year-old sitting down at a computer to type a paper on worldview evokes humor, not reality. However, a toddler does have a worldview. It may be limited, but it is a worldview nonetheless. This worldview is expressed in statements like  – I’m thirsty, he took my toy, I want a cookie, I’m tired, I’m hungry, I don’t want to. Do you see a pattern here? A toddler’s worldview tends to begin and end with him. This is not surprising given that we all start life gratifying the cravings of our flesh (Eph. 2:3). Left unchecked this limited, self-centered worldview will produce a […]

And why do you worry … ?

28"And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his […]

Things to Invest in….

"Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will not be exhausted, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. “ Luke 12: 32-34. In the last post I referenced Luke 12:13-34 with regard to wise investments. Jesus says to invest your life in things that will not wear out, in treasure that will not be exhausted. That raises some questions: where is this treasure, and what are these things that will not wear out? How do […]

Invest Wisely

Do not wear yourself out to get rich; have the wisdom to show restraint. Cast but a glance at riches, and they are gone, for they will surely sprout wings and fly off to the sky like an eagle. —Proverbs 23:4-5 T. Rowe Price. Chuck Schwab. Ameritrade. Scottrade. Fidelity. These investment firms are frequent visitors in your home. No, they aren’t invited guests. They attach themselves to the televised sporting events that are the favorites of American men. So, just after your team scores, Chuck Schwab shows up, encouraging you to make wise investments using his brokerage firm. Just as Chuck is saying goodbye, the owner of Scottrade flies by in his helicopter to let you know how his firm […]

The Emptiness of a Championship

Don Fields left this comment on the second of three posts about the Super Bowl. Excellent thoughts! We cannot view any medium as “neutral.” There is always a motivation and a message and we need to be evaluating and teaching our children to be evaluating. One thing you haven’t covered is that we should discuss the emptiness of a championship. As I watched the coverage after the game I heard much talk about Tom Coughlin, the Giants head coach, telling his players that second to family there is no feeling like winning a championship. This is a message that needs to be dealt with biblically. Thanks, Don for raising an important consideration. As our culture’s spectacles become more elaborate, the […]