Christian Perspective

Encouragement

Christian Perspective

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

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Update: Thanksgiving Devotional

Those of you who purchased our new Thanksgiving devotional, The God We Praise, should be receiving it any day. Don’t forget to start it November 2nd!

If you haven’t got a chance to check out the devotional yet, there is still time. You can read more about the devotional on www.christianperspective.net/godwepraise.html

Thought: The Glory Due His Name

We intellectually know that God is the great Creator. We know His power is unlimited. We know His thoughts are higher than our own.

But do we live like we really know our God? Do we really give God the glory due unto His name?

“Give unto the LORD, O ye kindreds of the people, give unto the LORD glory and strength. Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name.” Psalm 96:7-8 KJV

As I’ve worked on writing The God We Praise these past few weeks, I’ve been struck by just how much greater God is than we can ever imagine. He just spoke, and everything came to be! I have also found myself convicted that often I forget to really live in light of God’s character. How often I fail to give God the trust and dependence He deserves!

This month, I would encourage you to focus on who God is and to let the knowledge of His greatness, holiness, and care chase away your fears, pride, and worry. Let’s daily ask God to help us give Him the glory due unto His name—to help us live like we believe He is all He says He is.

Story: Don't You Believe?


Alyssa had been a homeless orphan for as long as she could remember—that is, until the King himself had adopted her. The King had taken her off the street, made her his very own daughter, and given her a place to live in his palace.

Alyssa now had nothing about which to fear or worry. Her father the King was not only powerful, but also wise and good, and he personally oversaw every detail of his children’s care.

But, strange as it may sound, Alyssa kept forgetting about her father’s care. Her governess, Myra, found her one morning curled up on the couch, fretting and wondering how she would obtain her breakfast. Alyssa had already been out on the streets that morning trying to find food, and had failed miserably.

Myra shook her head at her little charge. “Alyssa, dear,” she said in a gently reproachful voice. “Don’t you believe that your father is the king?”

“Of course I do!” Alyssa replied quickly.

“Then why are you worrying? As the king, your father is perfectly capable of supplying your needs.”

Alyssa looked up in surprise. She hadn’t thought of that before! “You’re right, Myra,” she declared. “I won’t be so foolish again.”

However, only a few hours later Alyssa’s countenance was again downtrodden. She had just been downstairs talking with some of the other children. As she had listened to them talk about all their plans for their future, she had begun to wonder about her own future. And as she wondered, she worried.

Bumping into Myra on the stairs, she unburdened her heart to her wise governess. Myra sighed patiently as she listened. “Alyssa,” she began as soon as she could get a word in edgewise. “Don’t you believe the king’s word to you?”

“Why, of course I do!” Alyssa wondered why her governess would ask such a strange question.

“Then why are you worrying about the future? He has promised to take care of you now and forevermore. Why, he has your future all figured out. Trust him to unfold his plans one step at a time.”

Alyssa knew that her governess was right. She just needed to trust her father. “Thank you, Myra,” she whispered. With a light heart, she headed down the stairs to greet guests that had just arrived, never dreaming that within a few minutes she would once again forget about her father’s perfect love and care.

The guests turned out to be some children of the noblemen who lived next to the castle. They had come to invite Alyssa to a grand party they planned to throw the next evening. Alyssa’s eyes grew wide at the prospect of attending the party. She could hardly wait!

Her hopes were cruelly dashed a few minutes later, however, when she was informed that her carriage was broken and she could not go.

Alyssa broke into tears. She wanted to go so badly! All her life she had dreamt of attending a party like this. Now she would miss out on all the fun.

Myra seemed to understand exactly what was going through her mind. “Alyssa,” she said gently, “Don’t you believe that your father is the king, and that as the king, he can do whatever he wishes?”

“Of course I do,” Alyssa replied, a bit crossly. “What does that have to do with the party and the broken carriage?”

“Oh, Alyssa, can’t you see? Your father could order you another carriage very easily if he wanted you to go to the party.”

Alyssa looked at Myra in surprise. She had never thought of that.

“And don’t you believe that your father knows all about the party and the carriage?”

Alyssa nodded. Her father’s letters to her assured her that he knew all about everything that happened to her.

“And don’t you believe that the king loves you perfectly and knows what is best?” Myra continued.

Alyssa nodded again. With sudden understanding, she exclaimed, “Then I shouldn’t complain or feel sorry for myself, should I? I should get up and rejoice, knowing my father knows about what has happened and thought it best for me not to go to the party?”

Myra nodded. “Yes, dear. That’s exactly what I mean.”

Happy once more, Alyssa scampered off to help the cook make dinner. Oh, how good it felt to simply trust her father again!

But a conversation she had in the kitchen soon set her to worrying once more.

“You mean the king simply adopted you?” the question came from Elena, one of the neighboring children who had come over to the kitchen to help out.

“Yes, isn’t it wonderful?” Alyssa replied, love and delight radiating from her countenance.

Elena nodded her assent. “But I say, Alyssa, you must try to earn the love the king has bestowed on you. After all, if you misbehave and aren’t a good princess, the king might stop loving you.”

The thought that she must earn the king’s love or do something to keep it had never occurred to Alyssa before. She devoted the remainder of the afternoon to trying desperately to act like the perfect princess. The more she tried to act like a princess, however, the more she seemed to act like a beggar. She spoke incorrectly, walked incorrectly, held a fork incorrectly—the list went on and on.

Myra found her a few hours later hiding in her closet, too ashamed to show her face to anyone. The kind governess gently gathered the sobbing child into her arms. “Alyssa, dear, don’t you believe that the king loves you?”

“Yes, Myra, I do, but--”

“But nothing. The king himself has promised to never leave or forsake you. You didn’t do anything to earn his love, and you can’t do anything to make him love you more or less. Don’t you believe that?”

“Yes, but-”

“No buts. Live like you believe your father. Serve and seek him out of love, not to try to earn or deserve his love. Now,” Myra added with a smile. “I think it’s time to begin your lessons for the day. Dry your eyes and open up your books.”

Alyssa opened up her lesson books willingly enough. After a few minutes, however, she grew bored. “Myra, do I have to keep studying?” she complained. Why did she have to learn all this stuff anyway?

Myra looked up from her knitting at her little charge. “Alyssa dear, don’t you believe that the king knows what is best for you?”

“Why of course I do! But what does that have to do with my studies?”

“Why, child, the king has personally planned your days.”

Alyssa was quiet for a minute as she let those words sink in. If she really believed the king knew best and planned her days, what right had she to ever complain? A smile lighted her face once more. Oh, why did she keep forgetting her father? Would she never learn to live like she believed him?

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For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light. Ephesians 5:8

Homeschool Tip: The Three "R's"

--By Cris Loop

Did you realize that there are three R’s far more important than reading, writing, and arithmetic? Over and over again the Bible teaches us to remember God and His truths, to respond to His love, and to receive His forgiveness and strength. Teaching our children these three R’s is the most important aspect of our homeschooling.

Let’s briefly take a look at these important “R’s” and how they apply to us as parents.

Remember—

Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome. Nehemiah 4:14b

As I have been recording the Torah (in English) on CD for a Jewish friend of mine, I have been struck this month by our natural tendency to forget. How quickly and easily we, like the Israelites, forget that God is on the throne of our lives, leading, guiding and directing us through each and every day!

Remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. Ephesians 2:12

Not only do we need to remember God’s greatness, but we also need to remember our incredible need for Jesus. We need to recognize that we are, and always will be, truly hopeless apart from Christ.

Most of us parents don’t have any difficulty reminding our children that they need Jesus. But are we willing to remember and admit how much we need Him? Our children need to see us admitting our need and remembering our God throughout our day.

Respond—

One of those listening was a woman named Lydia, a dealer in purple cloth from the city of Thyatira, who was a worshiper of God. The Lord opened her heart to respond to Paul's message. Acts 16:14

Our job in both the salvation and transformation process is to co-operate with God. We need to respond to God’s greatness and love in belief and trust.

The first step toward teaching our children to respond to God’s love is to make sure that we continue to respond to Him each day. It is the simple response of trust that will mold your character and lay an example for your children to follow. Although your children must choose to respond to God for themselves, they will learn how to do this by watching you.

Receive—

For who makes you different from anyone else? What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you boast as though you did not? 1 Corinthians 4:7

As we respond to the Lord in humility and trust, God can pour into our hearts His strength, wisdom, and patience. What a beautiful thought!

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Remember, respond, and receive—these three “R’s” form the basis of our Christian walk. As parents, we have the privilege of teaching these "R's" to our children by first making sure that we are remembering, responding, and receiving ourselves.

My prayer for you this month is that as you teach your children the basics of reading, writing, and arithmetic, you wouldn’t forget the three more important “R’s.” May you continually remember God’s greatness, respond to Him, and receive from Him the strength you need.


Hymn/Poem: Ye Call Me

The following words were found in an old German cathedral. I thought they were a beautiful challenge to live like we really believe God is all He says He is.

Ye call Me Master and obey not,
Ye call Me Light and see Me not,
Ye call Me Way and walk not,
Ye call Me Life and desire Me not,
Ye call Me rich and ask Me not,
Ye call Me Eternal and see Me not,
Ye call Me Noble and serve Me not,
Ye call Me Mighty and honor Me not,
Ye call Me just and fear Me not.

Found in Kenneth W. Osbeck, Amazing Grace: 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions (Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 1990), 302.

Unless otherwise indicated, articles are written by Katherine Loop, 2006.  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.net  or 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.