Christian Perspective

"Look to the Lord and His strength; seek His face always." Psalm 105:4

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Content:

Thought
Story
Homeschool Tip
Hymn/Poem 


 

Thought: Wasted Opportunities

I was trying desperately to make the most of every moment. My busy hands and feet hardly paused all day long as they scampered to finish up several projects. I knew I didn’t have any time to waste.

Yet that evening I realized I had wasted a lot of my time that day. When I got to Heaven, it wouldn’t really matter what tasks I had accomplished in the day. But it would matter whether I had spent each moment fellowshipping with God. Each moment I let slip by without fellowshipping with my Heavenly Father was a wasted moment—a priceless opportunity lost forever.

Too often, we miss the most priceless opportunity in the world: the opportunity to trust God and dwell in His presence. Just think, each moment you have the privilege of coming before the Creator of the universe. The Creator of all wants to spend time with you right now. Don’t miss that opportunity!

“Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is.” Ephesians 5:15-17



Story: Missing the Opportunity of a Lifetime


Long before any one else even thought about stirring, Mrs. Jones was awake and getting ready for another long day. By the time the sun peeked over the picturesque hills that surrounded the city, she had already gotten dressed, eaten her meager breakfast, and carefully packed a small slice of cheese to serve as her lunch. Soon she would begin the long journey toward the castle. She would then take up her position outside the castle walls, selling the basketful of vegetables she had succeeded in gathering from her little garden.

Every morning for the past month, Mrs. Jones had made the same trek to the castle. She had sold her vegetables outside the walls in the blazing heat and in the torrential rain. Yet despite constant hard work, she had not succeeded in raising near the amount of money that she needed. She knew her only hope lay in seeing the King. He would understand. But would the opportunity to present her case before Him ever arise?

Mrs. Jones was an old woman whose husband had recently died, leaving her bereft and penniless. At that time, her landlord gave her three months to pay her rent, or, he heartlessly informed her, she would be turned out onto the streets. She simply had to keep trying. So, despite the blisters on her tired feet and the ache in her old back, she grabbed her basket and once again headed down the path toward the city.

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Meanwhile, the king stood at the castle window, thoughtfully surveying the great city. “Donald,” he suddenly declared to a near-by servant, “I am going into the city today.”

“Sir?” queried the puzzled servant.

“Yes, I think it is a wonderful plan,” the king muttered to himself. Then aloud, he commanded, “I need you to get me a peasant’s garb at once. I will be going down into the city as one of the people for the day. I want to know them and spend time with them. Hurry now! There’s no time to loose.”

And so it happened that a few hours later the king stood in the midst of the market place, dressed as a poor peasant. He watched the people hurry by him. The poor peasants that hurried amongst the crowd, trying to eke out an income by selling their wares or lending their services, did not escape his keep eyes. One old woman particularly caught his attention. She must have been at least seventy years old, yet she darted amongst the crowd, trying desperately to sell her basket of produce.

The king walked over toward her. “Good morning, ma’m. How are you this fine morning?”

The woman whirled instantly around, eager for a sale. “Oh, I’m fine. What can I get you? A squash? Or how about this tomato? You won’t find a better deal!”

The peasant-king laughed good-naturedly, “Oh, I don’t need any vegetables this morning. I just wanted to talk with you.”

The woman stared at him for a moment in bewilderment, but she quickly found her tongue. “I don’t have time to talk! Can’t you see I’m trying to sell these vegetables?” And without giving the man time to say another word, the woman, Mrs. Jones by name, turned and hurried amongst the crowd.

If Mrs. Jones had only known what an opportunity she had just missed! Preoccupied with her task and worries, Mrs. Jones had unknowingly told the great king that she didn’t have time to talk with him. She had missed the opportunity of a lifetime.

Homeschool Tip: Provoking to Anger

--By Cris Loop

And, fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the LORD. Ephesians 6:4

Many of us have chosen to homeschool because we want to bring our children up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. And, certainly training our children at home helps us do this. But there are still ways that, instead of bringing our children up in instruction of the Lord, we unconsciously provoke our children to anger.

Without realizing it, we fall into the perfect parent syndrome. We set ourselves up on a higher pedestal than our children simply because we are their parent. We give the impression that what we as parents say and do is perfect. The Bible, however, says that parents and children are in the same boat—hopeless apart from Christ. When we pretend to be perfect simply because we are a parent, we really forget our own need for God. And instead of pointing our children to the only hope for humankind, we end up provoking our children to anger.

Let me give you an example. I lecture my children for interrupting me. My children leave the room feeling about two inches tall and like the worst children in the world. Later that morning, I enter my children’s room without waiting for an answer to my knock and tell them to come downstairs that instance. My children secretly wonder why it was okay for me to interrupt their conversation. Were they to be bold enough to ask me this, I would inform them that I was the parent. I have just set myself up on a “parent pedestal” and provoked my poor children to anger. How much better it would be for my children to see me treating them with the same respect and kindness I want from them! And even better, when I treat them wrongly, to see me receive correction and humbly apologize.

Our children see our hypocrisy better than we do ourselves, and they will respect true humility much more than false perfection. Are you showing your children that both you and they need God, or are you putting yourself up on a “parent pedestal”? My prayer this month is that we would not provoke our children to anger but rather train them in love.


Hymn/Poem: To See You

I want to see You, Lord,
To have Your peace and life
I want to know You, Lord,
If only I didn’t have all this strife!

Yet, You, Lord, all things ordain,
Sometimes I wonder secretly--
What if You sent the very things of which I complain,
To show me Yourself and Your sufficiency?

Unless otherwise indicated, articles are written by Katherine Loop, © 2005.  Scripture taken from the NIV Bible. Feel free to pass these e-mails along to others in whole or part (please include a link to our website when you do). If you do not regularly receive Christian Perspective's monthly e-mails and updates and would like to receive them, please send your e-mail address to info@christianperspective.netor sign up on our website, www.christianperspective.net.   If you would like to be removed from the e-mail list, simply let us know, and we will promptly remove you. We'd always love to hear from you. Drop us a line sometime and share with us your thoughts and suggestions.