The Healthy Habit of Laughter

 Posted by on May 14, 2013  1 Response »
May 142013
 

Then our mouth was filled with laughter, And our tongue with singing. Then they said among the nations, “The Lord has done great things for them.”  Psalm 126:2

Studies have shown that laughter is healthy, healing.  It may even have benefits similar to a light workout!   And we all know the verse  ”A merry heart does good, like medicine, But a broken spirit dries the bones.”  (Prov. 17:22)

The Healthy Habit of LaughterHow can we bring laughter into our homes?

Laugh at yourself– I do this on many occasions, because I am by nature a klutz.  I trip over my own feet, spill things, and knock full glasses off tables regularly.  Laughter helps to diffuse the situation and any tension that might arise with it.

Laugh with your children– What you are in essence doing is teaching them to laugh at themselves.  When they do funny things as mentioned above, have a good laugh with them, but not at them.  Make them feel better by sharing a time something similar happened to you.

Laugh in the good times– that’s easy.  When a prayer is answered and I just didn’t see how it was going to happen, when Dad gets a raise, when we finally book that trip to Disneyworld after years of saving… we laugh.  Not a long, lingering laugh such as when you witness something hilariously funny, just a short, happy laugh, reminding you that God is good.

Laugh in the bad times– when we have had financial trials, when several things around the house are broken and we can’t afford to repair them all, when we are under a tornado warning… my husband and I often resort to light joking about our situation.  In our family, it is ok to make jokes about serious things.  We tread lightly here, cautiously.  This would not work for some families but it has helped ours make light of what would normally be stressful situations.

Make jokes!  Nice ones, clean ones.  Just to let a little laughter into your day.  Read jokes– I love to read “Laughter, the Best Medicine” in Reader’s Digest.

Watch funny tv shows in your leisure time– My all-time favorite is I Love Lucy.  I often insert one of my dvds after a tiring or “down” day.  Who wouldn’t laugh at that?  My family does… even though we’ve seen each episode multiple times!

Watch Christian comedians– we have our favorites.  Sometimes I will just pop over to YouTube and watch a two-minute segment of one of them.  Ah, that relaxes me and helps me get on with my day.

Play board games with your family– want to have a long laugh session?  Play Balderdash.  I still have the picture I took of my parents, sitting at our kitchen table when I was in college, with red faces and tears running down their faces because what someone had just written as a “definition” in Balderdash was hilarious.  I treasure this memory!

Never laugh at another’s expense– if it does not edify, we don’t do it.

Laughter heals– One of my favorite memories of the terrible, yet beautiful ordeal we had with our daughter’s accident was the 5th day she was in the ICU.  Her youth pastor had flown up to visit us, and brought her a number of homemade cards from the youth group.  All were sweet and caring, with Bible verses and artistic drawings.  Except one.  One young man, known for his precociousness, wrote a funny anecdote.  Having been cooped up in the ICU for too long, I probably thought it was even funnier than it was, and started laughing so hard tears ran down my face.  I took a break and then read his card aloud again, and laughed again.  My daughter soon joined in with me, and as I looked at her precious, bruised face under the oxygen mask, my heart swelled with joy.  My little girl was healing.

Ah, the power of laughter.

 ~ Written by Kim A.

The Christian Parenting Handbook

 Posted by on April 29, 2013  No Responses »
Apr 292013
 

Today I share with you a wonderful resource! The Christian Parenting Handbook is available for purchase this week. Not only that but when you purchase it you also are provided with $400 worth of additional parenting resources.

Practical. Biblical. 50 chapters of parenting strategies for all ages of children.

I received a digital preview copy of The Christian Parenting Handbook to help spread the word about this great resource. This post contains affiliate links, please see my disclosure policy.

heart approachI’ve been looking forward to The Christian Parenting Handbook since I first heard about it. Remember our sister site, Passionate Purposeful Parenting? Melanie Robbins, owner of Passionate Purposeful Parenting, has a team of authors there. Included are my husband and me. But also – the co-authors of this parenting books – Dr. Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller, R.N. are fellow writers.

Take a few minutes to watch this introductory video about the handbook, then don’t miss entering the mega giveaway below:

Christian Parenting Handbook Video Trailer from Scott Turansky on Vimeo.

Bonuses For You:

Buy The Christian Parenting Handbook between April 29 and May 5 and get a package of free resources valued at more than $400.00. You can learn more on our website about the 8 items contained in the Bonus Parenting Package. In addition, you can get The Christian Parenting Handbook Companion Guide (This is a workbook with audio clips that will help you apply the material in The Christian Parenting Handbook.) for free if you purchase 5 copies or more of the book. Simply make your purchase from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, BAM (Books A Million), CBD or Parable.

To claim your premium, simply forward your purchase confirmation to Gift@biblicalparenting.org and we will email you your special product code for the $400.00 package. If you purchased 5 or more copies of the book, we’ll send you the PDF version of the Companion Guide as well as the audio package.

Now for the Mega Giveaway!

The giveaway includes the following prizes:

  • iPad mini
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Enter the rafflebox widget below:

Christian Parenting handbook giveaway1 Don’t miss out on your package of $400 in resources, get your Christian Parenting Handbook this week!

Apr 252013
 

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You know how sometimes you just need to mix things up a bit. You might need to do something new or it might be something you just haven’t done in a long time. The point is it’s something different from what you’re doing at that very moment. Well, a couple of weeks ago I was at that point. That point of knowing something needed to change. The change needed to effect the good or bad consequences I may or may not be handing out depending on my boys behavior or attitude.
 
I knew I needed to be more intentional with my boys about pointing out their good choices, you know those times they were submitting to the spirit, that is why I am using the Fruit of the Spirit Jar again. I also knew I needed to mix things up a bit when it came time to decide on what to do for their not-so-good choices.
 
You see my boys love video games, so I got into the habit of only taking video games away when the boys made a not-so-good-choice. I just felt like that I needed to add some variety into this type of parenting situation. So, for these not so good choices I put out a “Job Jar”. The Job Jar consist of strips of paper that list out different activities that my boys would consider jobs.
 
You know actual work such as:
  • sweeping
  • vacuuming
  • dusting
  • cleaning toilets, tubs, sinks, baseboards, etc.
  • math worksheets, copy work, practice multiplication tables, etc..
 
If they have to pick something from the job jar, they have to put their initials on the strip of paper. That way if they pick it the next time, they will put it back and pick another one that they haven’t done.
 
This has worked:
  • to add some variety
  • give a little surprise factor
  • for me to get a little extra help with house work
  • for them to get in a little practice in on some important educational skills 
I am very pleased and thankful for the prompting of the Holy Spirit to use both of the jars I have mentioned above.  As I said, sometimes you just need to mix things up a bit!
 
~written by Angie
Apr 092013
 

As homeschool moms, we’re used to taking charge of our households during the day, managing the kids, their schooling, the pets, and the telephone all while juggling a laundry basket on one hip and a laptop on the other. When we finally sit down, we’ve got a school book in one hand and the Bible in the other—trying to improve as a teacher and attempting to live out the walk of the Proverbs 31 woman all at the same time.

1380931_68482931Some days, we’re rockin’ and a’rollin’ like we’ve got super powers and other days we’re hiding in the bathroom hoping no one remembers that there’s supposed to be a wife or mommy in the house. Too often, we try to do it all or at least act like we think we can and inadvertently we get things around the home out of balance. We become of the boss of everything and everyone and then no one wants to help us when we need them.

One relationship that often gets out of whack nearly as easy as your back—and becomes twisted like your neck when there’s a crick in it—is the relationship you have with your husband. When you spend all day bossing (I mean, directing) kids around, it’s kind of easy to do the same thing to your husband when he comes home at the end of the day. It’s sometimes second nature to tell him to pick up his socks or to put his dishes in the sink, just like we’d tell our children. Then when we all of a sudden feel like mommy to not only the kids but to our husbands, as well, we start to blame him and wonder where in the world our manly man we married all those years ago went. We wonder why he won’t step up and be a man.

Just like when your immunity is low and you’re exposed to toxins and viruses and bacteria, forgetting the God-ordained order of your household will cause serious illness in your family and maybe even in the future generations. The best cure for this “disease” and the way to have a happy home is to remember that while we cannot change our pasts, we can direct the future and make a difference. We can make sure our households reflect the Biblical model. 549466_10150920471056213_35500123_n

How can you show your husband that he’s “the man” and not your child? How can you make sure you’re not showing your kids (and others) that you’re your husband’s mommy and not his wife?

Respect your husband. Keep your words and attitudes toward him and about him kind, gentle, and loving. Avoid speaking in harsh tones and being condescending to him.

Encourage your husband. Proverbs 16:24 says: “Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.” Tell him how thankful you are that he works hard to provide for your family. Make special time with him without the kids. He wants to feel like a “grown-up” with you. Although words of affirmation from co-workers and bosses mean a lot to a man, those encouraging words spoken by his wife are priceless to him.

Be his helpmeet. Sometimes we do things for our husbands because we think we can do them better than they can. And then we complain because we have to do everything ourselves. Be a helpmeet without doing everything for him. He is a man, after all. He is quite capable of doing things.

408839_10150468673946213_730756276_n Stop complaining. If you complain that you have no help around the house or complain about how he does things, it makes him want to help you less. If he doesn’t know how to do what you need him to do but he desires to help you, then show him how. Tell him how thankful you are when he helps you with the kids and around the house.

Kids will do things halfway so you won’t ask them to do them again. Is your husband doing things halfway? Maybe he’s trying to get out of helping. Maybe he feels like you’ll go behind him and redo it. Let him fold the towels his own way. Believe it or not, there really isn’t a right way to do it. Let him see that his way is okay too and that you appreciate his efforts. Make sure he knows how valuable his help is to you.

Children naturally want to rebel against what mommy tells them to do. They want to play first and do chores or schoolwork last. If you treat your husband like your child he will not want to help you. He will not want to be with you. He will find something to do elsewhere. He won’t feel like a knight in shining armor or superman.

A word of caution: Check your motives before you lavish your husband with words of affirmation and make sure that you are not showing him false respect and pouring empty words out on him just so he will do things for you. Philippians 2:3-4 says: “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.Remember a marriage and a family is a team.

As the mother of a girl, I want to exemplify what a Biblical woman is like and I want to show her how she should treat her husband. As the mother of a boy, I need to show him how he should want to be treated. I do not want my daughter to take charge of her husband like she will her children. I do not want my son to buckle underneath the badgering of a strong-willed woman. I want him to be respected in his household by his wife and his children. I want my daughter to be blessed with a man who knows he’s the one who provides for and protects her.

As helpmeets and wives we help our husbands tremendously when we don’t treat them as children. When they know they have a wife who loves them, respects them, honors them, and desires their leadership in their lives, men exemplify God’s original design for them.

Photos: Wedding photo and couple hugging photo courtesy of http://www.kaylajohnsonphotography.com

Milkmaid: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1380931 

January 2013 around the web

 Posted by on January 22, 2013  No Responses »
Jan 222013
 

Around the Web 26 Moments That Restored Our Faith In Humanity This Year -Sometimes you need a reminder that people can do wonderful things.

#1 in 2012: 3 things Zig Ziglar told me at lunch | Jon Acuff’s Blog - (It’s fitting that this was the most popular post this year, because this year we lost a legend.) A few weeks ago I had the chance to eat lunch with Zig Ziglar and his amazing family. At the end of the lunch though, when we were getting ready to leave, Zig leaned forward on the table, pointed his finger at me, as if to say, “If you only hear 3 things today young man, hear these,” and then said this:

4 Functions of Sound Doctrine | Blogging Theologically - If you put these things before the brothers, you will be a good servant of Christ Jesus, being trained in the words of the faith and of the good doctrine that you have followed.

Noah’s Ark full-scale replica opens in Netherlands – Arts & Entertainment – CBC … -A full-scale replica of Noah’s Ark has opened to the public in the Netherlands.

The Self-Righteous Wife – The Gospel Coalition Blog -I’ve spoken to newly married girlfriends who have shared their frustrations with their new spouse. There is generally some area that the women wish their husbands would improve on, and they are growing weary waiting. We generally come to the same conclusion—their husbands may need to grow, but perhaps the wives are struggling with being judgmental and self-righteous. We can look at our men, see sin, and be too quick and eager to point it out.

How to Disarm an Angry Person-It is the most difficult of maneuvers. There are no guarantees of success. And the stakes are high. But we have no choice: we must learn how to do it.

Clever Phrase Here: Critical Thinker or Critical Spirit?-But critical thinking, while good in its pure form, can become ugly. Those of us who tend to be analytical can slowly warp into Mr. Grumpy Grumps. As I thought it over, here are a few things I think are signs that my critical thinking has turned into a critical spirit.

Letters of Note: Nothing good gets away- In November of 1958, John Steinbeck — the renowned author of, most notably, The Grapes of Wrath, East of Eden, and Of Mice and Men — received a letter from his eldest son, Thom, who was attending boarding school. In it, the teenager spoke of Susan, a young girl with whom he believed he had fallen in love. Steinbeck replied the same day. His beautiful letter of advice can be enjoyed…

Raising Kids the World Will Hate > The Village Church - I realized that if God answers my prayer for my son to be a follower of Christ, people will hate him. People will absolutely, unquestionably be repulsed by my son.

AlbertMohler.com – How Did This Happen? The Family Crisis as a Theological Crisi…-The first thing to understand about the present crisis of the family is that it did not materialize overnight.” Indeed, it did not. The current crisis of the family must be traced to economic, political, social, and ideological causes. But there is another cause as well. The family crisis is a theological crisis, and this must be the church’s first concern.

My goal is not to raise children who conform to my hopes, wishes, dreams, or standards; my goal is to raise children who walk in the “discipline and instruction of the Lord” (Eph. 6:4). Hence, my reproof must always be geared toward leading them Christward. ~ Voddie Baucham

Kim W. ~littlesanctuary.com