Hope for each Day Devotional Review & Give-away

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I had the opportunity to give my honest review of Billy Graham’s Hope for Each Day kids Devotional.   This is a wonderful kids devotional that is perfect for young readers!

I love how cheery and inviting the cover is and each devotional is geared towards growing kids.   This devotional book is a hard back book filled with 365 devotionals for each day of the year!  Perfect size for little ones! (Enter to win a free copy below) 

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Hope for Each Day devotional corresponds with the adult devotional Hope for Each day which is great for families that are trying to do Bible reading together.

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The author is the well known Evangelist & author Billy Graham  has delivered the gospel message to more people face-to-face than anyone in history and has ministered on every continent of the world in more than 185 countries. Millions have read his inspirational classics, including Angels, Peace with God, The Holy Spirit, Hope for the Troubled Heart, How to Be Born Again, The JourneyNearing Home, and The Reason for My Hope.

Here are a few places you find a copy of Hope for Each Day kid devotional by Billy Graham.    Amazon, Barnes &Noble, CBD & Thomas Nelson.

You can also win one copy for your family or use as a gift for someone below:

(click link below)

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Be sure to Like, Share, Pin, & Tweet about this give-away! 

**Give-away open only to U.S. residents 18 years or older.  All opinions were solely mine and were given in exchange for this book. 

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What does a Godly mother look like?

Open Bible with a construction paper pink heart with MOM printed in the middle.As mother’s day is approaching I believe we all either sit back to remember our mother’s if they have passed on or what start thinking about what kind of mother are we? Of course we anticipate the family dinner or what the kids might be surprising us with….  But sometime during the upcoming weekend we
reflect on what kind of mom am I?

I know for me…..I evaluate myself as mom a lot!  I think if we are all honest you do in some way or another.  Whether you stop to compare yourself to another mom at church or at the local playgroup (I believe we fall into that trap from time to time-it’s a big No No by the way!)or we start to just looking at all our mistakes and failures! (Satan loves to remind us of them on a regular basis)

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But if we are truly desiring to be a “Godly Mother”  then we need to look to what God says a Godly Mother is.   Let’s take a look at a few things we can find in scripture that will help us point ourselves in the direction of being a Godly Mom.

A Godly Mother should:

  • Be a prayerful mother.   Let’s face it…being a mom is hard and we need to be praying always.  We also need to be praying for each one of our children.   Make a list of things that they need in their lives….spiritual growth, God’s will to be clear in their lives, they would grow a love for God, salvation, etc.  Really the list can be super long.  Remember if we don’t pray for our children….who will? Here is a great list of things to pray for your children CLICK HERE.

And in that day ye shall ask me nothing. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you. Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full. (John 16:23-24 KJV) Billy-Graham-Christian-Mothers_6

  • Be a purposeful mother.  This is something you must be intentional and find purpose in everything you do.  Find ways to purposely teach and direct your children to the Lord.   Teach them from the time they are little about God’s love, his salvation, His Word etc.   Here is more about this topic of being purposeful CLICK HERE

And you shall teach them to your children, speaking of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. (Deut.11:19 KJV)

  • Be a passionate mother. If you are passionate about something it means that you feel very strongly about it. It means that you dedicate a portion of your life to whatever it is without allowing yourself to be dissuaded.  Being a Godly mother means we have to dedicate our life to being a Godly mother.  Be passionate about teaching and training them in the admonition of the Lord.  Love what you do…..yes it’s hard and tiring at times but it will benefit eternal rewards.   When your passionate about something…it shows!    11828644_10205650421393521_5417433085676928448_n
  • Be a fruitful mother.  One of the best ways to teach your children is for them to see “fruit” in your life.   If we are going to be Godly Mothers we need to be Godly woman first.  We must have the fruit of the Spirit evident in our lives.  This is a daily process of cultivating…..Love, Joy, Peace, Self-control, etc.  What our children see in our lives is usually produced in theirs.  We need to make sure we are fruitful moms with these qualities showing in our own life. (sometimes that is hard- Right?)

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. (Gal. 5:22-23)

Motherhood is really a journey.  As we grow closer to the Lord in our personal walk, He then in turn adds these characters to our life.   There is no such thing as a “perfect mom”.   We all make mistakes, we all fail, we all have weakness…..but our goal each day should be to strive for Godliness.   We will achieve that when we rely on God’s Wisdom,  His strength, and His Word!   Be the Mom that God wants you to be!!!

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Kids and Technology…from a Christian perspective

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Technology….what a wonderful thing but also challenging when raising children!  Oh what a different generation our kids are growing up in.  Back when I was little there was no such thing as a cell phone, kindle, IPod, or even personal computer!  Boy am I dating myself!  HA!  

Raising kids in this day and age has it’s many challenges.  There are many things pulling for our children’s attention, but one of the biggest struggles can be technology.   Of course most of it seems fun or harmless but in the end it’s an avenue that opens doors to many other “things” that are waiting to trap our kids if we are not on guard!

How do we raise kids in an age where most things come in the form of technology.  Games, reading, movies on the go, educational apps, social media, etc.  The list goes on!  Not saying you “need” those things in your home or life.  Many people do fine with out them, but for most of us, we have some kind of device, computer, smart phone, or game system in the house.

Here a few ways our family handles technology and a few you might want to consider:

  • Have time limits.   Be aware of how much time your child is spending on devices. We all can get busy and time gets away from us, but we need to set limits.  It’s healthy!    Make time limits for the day or the week.  There are many programs out there that can put timers on devices or just keeping track in your mind or paper works well too.  Remember all good things in moderation!  Too much screen time isn’t good for anyone, let alone little ones!  
  • Know what they are on.   This may seem like a no brain-er but you’d be surprised how many parents have NO clue of what their kids are on.   Big mistake!  It’s important to be proactive in blocking certain sites or checking their history and see where they’ve been.  Ask questions, talk to your teens (or young people) and find out what social media hangouts they are on.
  • Install a guard.   At our house we have Covenant Eyes  (affiliate) which is downloaded on each phone, computer and device and it will give a weekly report on what is being accessed and if there is something questionable it will flag it and make you aware of the danger on that site.   It also gives the parents the ability to block certain sites. The cost of this is roughly $10 a month.  (I’m sure there are other programs out there, this is just the one we have used for years)
  • Be a good example.   Honestly we as parents can be just as bad when it comes to technology.  We must also limit our time in front of the screen and have real talk time and interaction.  Take walks, read together, play a game, etc.  Remember our kids watch what we do…it’s helpful when they see us doing other activities that doesn’t involve a computer device.
  • Family plug in station.  This is something we have recently started in our house that I just LOVE!  We have made one location in our house (which happens to be in our bedroom) where all the kids will charge their devices during the night.  This insures that mom and dad can see their device and we know they are not on their devices in the room during bedtime.  That’s a big no no at our house!
  • Have the talk.   It’s wise to sit with our kids and explain the dangers of accessing the internet and other programs on line.  Make them aware of the hidden dangers that are lurking out there.  Obviously depending on their age make it appropriate for them.  We must use these times to educate them on not talking to “people” on line and giving out information, or searching on sites that are not kid friendly.  Show them that Satan has traps of many different sorts to peek their curiosity and lead them down the wrong path!
  • Screen free zone.   Most nights our family will have a time where there are no devices on and it’s designated to reading or just card/board games.  Now this isn’t ALL night but it’s just a time where we unplug and connect with each other.  Maybe doing a few days or a whole week is healthy to unplug and do something different!
  • Know their passwords.  Our kids know that we at any given time we can have access to their devices.  No password is to be changed without us knowing.  We try and keep an updated list of their passwords, which helps with accountability.
  • Be a step ahead.  If you are a parent with any age child you know that they are VERY smart with devices, websites, etc.  Stay informed of what is out there, what is new, what teens/young people are doing these days.  Educate yourself and be aware of what snap chat is, Instagram, YouTube, etc. (there’s a boat load of social media sites)  Check them out yourself and see what content is on them!     It’s eye opening!  Staying a step ahead of them is key.

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Technology can be a fun but it can also be something that Satan will use to corrupt their minds and hearts.  It may seem innocent and fun, but we as parents need to keep our heads in the game and be proactive to what our kids and teens are doing on the internet.

Some days  it would truly be easier to raise kids with NO technology but we unfortunatly can’t go back in time.  We need to be parents that are wise, engaged, and constantly be watchful over our children and the technology that they use. Know what your kids are doing and keep the communication open with them on a daily/weekly basis.   I know for sure that Satan would rather us sit back and do nothing, but as you know this will lead to some serious problems down the road.  Let’s be a step ahead and active in the area of technology!   

1 Peter 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

What things do you do in your home to protect and/or limit screen time?                   Would love to hear!  

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What I learned from reading through the Bible in one year

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Happy New Year!  (yes I’m a few days behind but hey…it’s still “new” isn’t it)  What a wonderful and super busy 2016 it was, with so many life changes and schedules to keep up with.   I’m super excited to share with you what I’ve learned this past year while challenging myself to read through the entire Bible in one year!  Stick around and I’ll get into what has transformed my life.

First, this was a personal goal of mine that the Lord placed on my heart and I have read through the Bible before but it was SO long ago I honestly don’t remember much about anything.   I honestly can’t recall even how old I was….but either way, I wanted to do it this year and I was amazed at how it changed me!

I first had to find a “plan” that best suited me.  There are SO many “reading plans” for going through the Bible, I found a simple one that just worked for me.  Nothing fancy, just going through the old and new testament at the same time.  Keep in mind, I have been reading the Bible each day before this past year but it was more devotional style reading.

What the Lord began to show me was how much I did NOT know!  (honestly that isn’t super surprising)  But it spurred me on to want and desire to dig deeper.    I found myself truly intrigued with all the “stories” of the old testament and how they came alive when I read them.  It really uncovered a passion to want to know more and put a desire to research in a different way.

Another thing that I learned was as busy as I am that if you are serious about reading the Bible it can be done!   Juggling home tasks, schooling, appointments, sicknesses, vacations,  having another daughter graduate and leave for college, church ministry, and the list goes on I was still able to carve out time to read each and every day.  Let me add…..you can too!

Now let me say….there were days here and there that I missed but caught up later on.  But for the most part it became part of what I did.  I looked forward to “that time” when I could sit and read!  I’ll also be transparent that some of the reading was very hard to understand and follow, but I kept plugging away through some of those tougher books.

It taught me how to be disciplined, it taught me to truly value God’s Word.  I honestly know that I’ve taken God’s Word for granted a lot.  Not necessarily on purpose but because we have many copies in our home and we don’t truly appreciate the freedom we have to read it each and everyday unlike other’s around the world.  We are very blessed to have the completed, inspired Word of God and I’ve grown a love for it like never before.

One other thing about reading the Bible through this past year has also encouraged my children to make reading God’s Word important too.  Remember the things your children learn are more caught than taught!  When they see us in God’s Word each day they are encouraged to do the same.  When it’s important to us….it truly does become important in their lives as well too!  

There are many opinions about whether it’s beneficial to read through the Bible, I’ve even heard many say it can even turn into a “duty”.  That can happen when we don’t have the right heart and attitude about it, but when we look to God’s Word to hear the Lord speak and to open our hearts to what we can apply to our lives….it becomes a treasure and something we desire more of!   My opinion is that every believer in Christ should at some point in their walk with the Lord read the entire Word of God.  I’m not saying you must read it in one year, but over time you should take the time to read it from beginning to end.     Just think this is God’s words to us!  What a powerful thing to treasure!

2 Timothy 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:

This year I have challenged myself in another area of my spiritual walk with the Lord.  (be sure to stay tuned)

What areas are you looking to grow this year in 2017?   Or what experience have you had with reading through God’s Word?  Be sure to share and comment below!

 

 

 

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Airship Genesis Kids Study Bible review & give-away

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I was given Airship Genesis kids study Bible by David Jeremiah from Tommy Nelson to review and give my honest opinion.   Let me just say….this Bible is WAY COOL!!!  (I’m also giving away one to one special reader)  Enter below to win!  

First let me say I truly love the preaching and teaching of Pastor David Jeremiah as well as his books, so I was super excited to have the opportunity to review this Bible for my own kids.   This Bible is geared more towards children ages 6 to 8 or a bit older.  I found that my son who is 10 really enjoyed the adventure parts through out this Bible as well as the graphics.

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This study Bible has a lot more than just your standard Bible would.                                         There are features such as:

66 Mission Overviews – Bible book introductions

100 Rupert Reports – short informational notes throughout the Bible

50 Logos Discovery articles – articles that take kids on a journey through the Bible

75 Power Force articles – practical application and Bible truths articles

50 Bible Heroes – character studies of main Bible heroes

100 Bible Blasts – highlighted Bible memory verses

Full color maps

Bible concordance

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What an awesome way to engage your children into digging into God’s Word on a daily basis.  I believe it’s helpful to have books and teachings on their level that will help them to develop an interest is key.

Airspace Genesis Study Bible comes in soft leather or hardcover edition.   If you are looking for a special Christmas or birthday gift for your child or grandchild, I would highly recommend this unique study Bible.  Here’s another peek into a couple of the pages…

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For more information about this study Bible or to order one for your children… click here. 

***If you would like to win a copy of this special Study Bible, please comment below with who you would give it to or why you would love to win!!  It’s that easy!  If you want extra entries you can share on FB, Twitter, Pinterest  (please let me know in your comments that you did)

 

 

 

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Color Code Bible Give-away

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I have so much fun doing book reviews for Tommy Nelson.  This month I had the wonderful opportunity to review Color Code Bible (NKJV) by Tommy Nelson.  What an awesome Bible!!  Color Code Bible is a great tool for kids.  It has resources for their age and to help them easily understand different portions of the Bible.   (I’m also giving away one Bible to one of my readers! Enter below)

Here is a glimpse of the breakdown of colors:

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Gold: God

Navy: Sin, evil,

Red: Jesus

Orange: washed clean from sin, new life

Green: growth in your new life as a Christian and Faith Walk

Blue: Prayer, Praise and Thanksgiving

Purple: Heaven

What an awesome way to help children and adult too understand the Bible as they read.   Of course anytime you can help children get a better grasp on the word of God is always beneficial.  Kids can easily see the colored verses and they can understand if it pertains to heaven, or sin, or Jesus speaking.

Here’s another brief summary from Tommy Nelson:

A vibrant 64 pages in the beginning of the Bible will explain the color system as well as offer expanded study help features especially for a child’s creative and imaginative mind!

The large, readable type, bold in-text subject headings, individual Bible book introductions, and color-highlighted verses all make this Bible a fantastic purchase for any child!

Full of bright colors, memorization aids, and the never-ending truth of God’s Good News, the Color Code Bible is an exciting new way to study God’s Word for everybody.

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Now comes the fun part!  One of you lucky readers will have a chance to win one for your family!  Just click the link below to enter:  (Be sure to share, tweet, and pin)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Changes to liven up your homeschool life

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I’ve now been home schooling over 10 years!  Its super excited to say I’ve graduated 2 of my children from high school too!  YAHOO! (I still have 6 more to go)  I have done a lot of things wrong, right and in between.   I’ve also did various home school styles from videos, to regular teaching, workbooks, and also unit studies.  I also taught in a Christian school for 3 years (that’s another story).

This year I’ve made some BIG changes in our home school plan!  I’m actually really excited about this year and all that I’ve gotten accomplished this past month to get the process going.

We used to have a “school room” a number of years ago, but that changed to our older daughters room and the younger gang have been doing school at the table or in front of the wood stove in the winter!  HA!

Well I truly needed change and so did the kids.  I think sometimes change is good and it’s needed.  We’ve got to reevaluate things and find what works and what doesn’t.  Find what we can spice up or what we can let go of.  For me this summer, change has created a new excitement for homeschooling.  YES!

Recently I’ve decided to turn a section of our basement into a “school area”.   So exciting!  Our basement isn’t the most glamorous, but hey it’s a space that I’ve started working on to add a special feel for the kids and a space that we can be creative and learn.  Also a spot where we can close the door when we are done and not have “school” spread out everywhere!  (why didn’t I think of this sooner?!)

(A few pics of things I’ve been updating in our basement….still in progress)

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Here’s some encouragement to new home schooling moms or even ones that have been doing it for awhile…..

Know that home schooling truly evolves as you go.  What works one year, might not work another year.  Also what curriculum works for one child might not neccessarily work for another one.  It’s truly a process!

Don’t give up when it gets tough!  In all reality home schooling your children is hard and trying at moments but remember it’s also very rewarding and can be fun!  Changing things up can help from burn out!  Let me be the 1st to say….you gotta keep things new and fresh.  This is another reason we are moving to the basement.  I needed change as well as them.  (Remember you don’t NEED a “room” to effectively home school….you can school anywhere, this is just what works for us) 

Pray over your school year, your curriculum and the goals that you want for your home.   Including God is so very important and learning to allow God to direct your steps is key!

You gotta be organized and planned out.  Chaos truly happens when you don’t have plans or goals.  Trust me…I’ve tried it many ways and it’s not pretty when your not planned out.  Here is a great resource to help get your organized in your school time, family time, and everything else. If your needing to get more organized and planned, click HERE to order your planner….it’s a great tool!

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Last but not least….be you!!  You are the only one that knows your kids the best and you are the one that God created to meet their needs.   Don’t compare yourself to what other home school moms are doing, just follow God’s leading and do what He has you do!

Schooling your children is a journey and it is a great opportunity to guide their hearts and their minds towards Christ.  It’s an opportunity to connect with them and spend time cultivating their lives to be faithful servants of the Lord.

How are you changing things up this upcoming year?  Let me hear your ideas!!! 

 

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