Sunday Collectives 9/15/14 – 9/21/14
By Jody Neufeld
I have been mulling today. For good or not, Facebook gives a glimpse into people’s lives. And today I was pondering how raising children has changed but still stays the same.
I think the biggest change from my parents’ generation is the decrease in corporal punishment. My children’s generation who are in their mid- to late-thirties believe spanking is not the primary form of discipline. And to a great extent, I agree with them. I believe the most important characteristic of valuable discipline is consistency & judiciousness, meaning – make sure the consequence fits the “crime” and be consistent in handling repeat offenses, no matter how tired you (the parents) are.
By Bill Perry
Grace… Think for just a minute on that. You probably know how it feels when someone has shown you grace or been gracious to you for absolutely no reason other than they wanted to do so. As good as the feeling is to receive grace, it is the gracious character of the one showing grace that captures our attention.
Especially if it is from someone whom we regard as a superior. He or she doesn’t have to act that way toward us, but still does. As we think about it, we say, “Amazing…” And our respect and appreciation for this gracious person only grows. Isn’t that the way it is with God, only more?
We want to borrow grace. We agonize over what others face, taking on their sufferings, imagining how we would feel in their situation. Sympathy and empathy are very important. However if we don’t follow God’s way, even if our intentions are good and honorable, we can find ourselves overburdened and weighted down, far too exhausted to have strength left to accomplish anything for ourselves or for others.
We want God to grant us grace for something that is not ours. God’s grace is sufficient for every problem or difficulty we face. God’s grace is sufficient for every problem or difficulty anyone faces.
By Michele Howe
I was in the car running what felt like a zillion errands and couldn’t wait to get home, unload the groceries, packages, and whatever else, when I heard a radio host ask his interviewee what he felt was the greatest gift of childhood.
To my surprise, this educated educator, replied with one word.
Then, he recounted his childhood and how he spent his time as a boy running through the woods making up imaginary battles with pretend foes wearing himself out physically as he exercised his mind’s imagination and creativity.
By Suzanne Davis Harden
“We have this treasure from God, but we are only like clay jars that hold the treasure. This is to show that the amazing power we have is from God, not from us.” ~ 2 Corinthians 4:7
Has someone ever said something to you that you took the wrong way?
One day, when I had a severe migraine, I lay on my bed thinking about something that my son who lives 3000 miles away from us, had said to me earlier-something that at first I’d thought humorous.
My son has a wonderful sense of humor and loves to make jokes.
By James E. Campbell
One of the biggest areas that I believe the church struggles is in the area of authenticity. Our tendency is to hide behind clichés and church-speak to put on a good front. We paint the outside of the house while the inside may be in shambles just to keep up a good appearance.
We become those white-washed tombs that God’s word speaks of-appearing beautiful on the outside but full of dead men’s bones. The problem with this is three-fold.
First, man looks at the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart. It is not as though an all-knowing God is fooled by our façade of having it all together.
Photo credit: Lili Vieira de Carvalho / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND