Saturday, November 22, 2014

Raising Kids

            If there is one thing I have come to learn, it is that raising kids is a challenge in today’s society.  One of the reasons it is a challenge is because I am trying to raise them in a biblical way. That is not something that is smiled upon any more.  While there are some who do not agree with the manner in which I raise my children, my wife and I are doing our best to bring them up on the nurture and admonition of the Lord.
            We have one child who is special needs so that makes things a challenge.  He does not respond very well to discipline. I try hard to not take it personally when he doesn’t respond, but it is challenging to me being “old school.” When he talks back or is disrespectful I have to fight an urge inside of me to want to go off. I do rather well by the grace of God to hold back my “barbaric” urges. I want to live according to Proverbs 13:24 and love my sons accordingly. Out of all the jobs I have ever held being a parent has to be the hardest. I feel like a horrible parent most days when I do not just let my kids do whatever it is their little hearts desire. I want them to become good godly men one day. We try and implement rules and regulations for them that each boy has to abide by; we also try and give them age appropriate chores.

            Proverbs 19:18 gives hope to parents who are struggling with their children, it says “Discipline your son, for there is hope….” There is hope in disciplining your child(ren). The hope we have is in Christ. There is no other hope in this world. We have to learn as parents that when our children misbehave it is not always a reflection of our parenting skills and we need to ask ourselves why are we concerned about their behavior; is it because we are worried about what the person next to us is going to think? It is easy to fall in to that trap, we just have to remind ourselves that we are children of grace and to extend that same grace to our children.  When is it kids just being kids, or something more severe? I am no expert on this topic so please don’t take my words to be the final authority. We go to the final authority which is the Bible.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Review of Invitation to Philippians

            Donald R. Sunukjian wrote Invitation to Philippians in 2014. This work was not extremely long (113 pages), but it comes packed with information. Before this work I had never heard of this author, but I quickly grew to like his writing style. If you are looking for a traditional commentary on Philippians this work is not for you. However, if you are looking for a work that helps you think through the work and offers good illustrations then you are in the right place. Each chapter is broken down in to bite size pieces, and is processed in a like manner of a sermon.
            One way this book might be used is if you do not have a trained pastor on staff would be to use this work and let him preach it as though it were his own.  Being a seminary student I  do not always have time to do additional reading on top of school work, this book however was a joy to read and think through. I must say that I focused most of my attention on the section of Scripture I am writing a sermon on for class (Philippians 1:12-18).  Throughout that section I must have highlighted what equates to two whole pages of information. One tidbit I highlighted was, “Paul was in house arrest in Rome. He was able to receive visitors in the house,  but the chains never left his wrist….And even though he had no source of income he still had to pay the rent on the house or else he would be put in some dungeon.”(pg 24).
            This is a work I would happily recommend to anyone wanting to go deeper into the book of Philippians. I do not always give such a broad recommendation, this book however deserves it, with its conversational tone and style it has more mass appeal than some other commentaries on the subject.

I was given a copy of this work for review in exchange for a fair and honest review, I did not have to write a favorable review in order to receive this work.